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Title: Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Vol. 26, November, 1880
Author: Various
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Vol. 26, November, 1880" ***

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text by =equal signs=. Footnotes have been moved to the end of the
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  NOVEMBER, 1880.

 Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1880, by J. B.
 LIPPINCOTT & CO., in the Office of the Librarian of Congress, at


 THE RUINS OF THE COLORADO VALLEY.           Alfred Terry Bacon.     521
 THE ARTS OF INDIA.                          Jennie J. Young.        521
 ADAM AND EVE.                                                       547
       CHAPTER XXXIII.                                               547
       CHAPTER XXXIV.                                                552
       CHAPTER XXXV.                                                 556
 A PIVOTAL POINT                                                     559
 THE MISTAKES OF TWO PEOPLE.                 Margaret Bertha Wright. 567
 LIMOGES, AND ITS PORCELAIN.                 George L. Catlin.       576
 THREE ROSES.                                Julia C.R. Dorr.        585
 THE PRACTICAL HISTORY OF A PLAY.            William H. Rideing.     586
 HEINRICH HEINE.                             A. Parker.              604
 DAWN.                                       John B. Tabb.           612
 MRS. MARCELLUS.                             Olive Logan.            613
 AUTOMATISM.                                 H.C. Wood, M.D.         627
 OUR MONTHLY GOSSIP.                         C. B. T.                637
       PEOPLE'S HOUSES: A DIALOGUE.          L.W.                    640
       "TIME TURNS THE TABLES."                                      642
       SEEING IS BELIEVING.                  A. T.                   642
 LITERATURE OF THE DAY.                                              645
       BOOKS RECEIVED.                                               648


[Illustration: HOUSE OF A MOQUI CHIEF.]

It was about seventy years before our English race gained a foothold
on the eastern coast of America that, far away in the West, the seeds
of another form of Eastern civilization began to fall upon ground
which now belongs to our national territory. In the wilderness near
the western border of New Mexico there stands a great crag, torn into
curious shapes by the wear of ages, bearing on its summit a ruined
fortress of a forgotten people and on its side hieroglyphic writing
which no one can decipher. The same smooth sandstone surface which
invited the picture-writing of the ancients has also tempted later
passers-by to perpetuate their names. A long series of inscriptions
in Spanish, begun before the first English had landed at Jamestown,
tells how explorers, conquerors, government emissaries and missionaries
of the Cross, passing that way, paused to leave their names on the
enduring rock. That imperishable monument bears record to all time that
this remotest region of our country, the last which the new life of the
nineteenth century penetrates, was the first point to be touched by
European civilization, if we except one old Florida fort. It is three
hundred and forty years since the Spaniards entered New Mexico. There,
almost at the centre of the continent, in the valleys of the Rio Grande
and Colorado, the old Spanish life has remained, as unprogressive as
a Chinese province, continuing to the middle of this century a kind
of modified feudal system. But this old declining civilization of the
South-west is new in comparison with that which the Spanish conquerors
found existing in the country when they entered it. A remnant of that
old half-civilized life lingers still, almost unchanged by contact with
white men, in the seven citadels of the Moquis perched on the high
_mesas_ of Arizona, while in the Pueblo villages of New Mexico we find
it more affected by the Spanish influence.

The attraction which drew the conquerors of Mexico forty-five days'
journey away into the North was the fame which had reached them of the
Seven Cities of Cibola (the buffalo), great in wealth and population,
lying in the valley of the Rio de Zuñi. To the grief of the invaders,
they found not cities, but rather villages of peaceful agricultural
people dwelling in great pueblos three and four stories high, and they
searched in vain for the rumored stores of gold. At that time the
pueblos held a large population skilled in many arts of civilization.
They cultivated large tracts of ground, wove fabrics of cotton and
produced ornate pottery. Their stone-masonry was admirable. But even
three hundred years ago it seems that the people were but a remnant of
what they had once been. Even then the conquerors wondered at the many
ruins which indicated a decline from former greatness. The people have
not now the same degree of skill in their native arts which the race
once had, and it is probable that when the Spaniards came and found
them declining in numbers the old handicrafts were already on the wane.

In a remote age the ancestors of these Pueblo tribes, or a race of
kindred habits, filled most of that vast region which is drained by the
Colorado River and its affluents, and spread beyond into the valley of
the Rio Grande. The explorers of a great extent of country in Utah,
Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado have found everywhere evidences of
the wide distribution and wonderful industry of that ancient people.
On the low land which they used to till lie the remains of their
villages--rectangular buildings of enormous dimensions and large
circular _estufas_, or halls for council and worship. On the sides of
the savage cliffs that wall in or overarch the cañons are scattered in
every crevice and wrinkle those strange and picturesque ruins which
give us the name "Cliff-dwellers" to distinguish this long-forgotten
people. And on commanding points, seen far away down the cañons or
across the mesas, stand the solitary watch-towers where sentinels might
signal to the villagers below on the approach of Northern barbarians.

It is only a few years since Mr. John Ruskin rejected a suggestion that
he should visit the United States, urging among other reasons that it
would be impossible for him to exist even for a short time in a country
where there are no old castles. We Americans were disposed to resent
this slap at our country, and not a few newspaper editors relieved
their minds by intimating that we could get along quite comfortably
without old castles and without Mr. Ruskin. But, after all, it is a
consolation for our national pride to know that the fault is not in
our country, but in Mr. Ruskin's ignorance of American archæology.
We have old castles without number in the Western Territories--ruined
fortifications and dwellings of an unknown antiquity, perhaps as old as
Warwick or Bangor, as impregnable as the highest cliff-built castle of
the Rhine, as grand in situation as the Drachenfels or Dover Castle.

Only the more eastern part of the great domain held by that ancient
people has yet been examined thoroughly with reference to its
antiquities. Within the last decade Mr. W H. Jackson of the United
States Geological Survey has brought to notice, by his admirable
photographs and descriptions, the remains in the cliffs and cañons
of South-western Colorado and the adjacent region. Thirty years ago
Lieutenant Simpson described the ruined pueblos of New Mexico. But
in regard to the ruins farther west, seen by Major Powell in his
headlong course down the Colorado River, and the innumerable remains
of cities, fortresses and canals mentioned by visitors to Arizona,
but little careful investigation has been made. I believe that few
richer fields for an antiquary can be found in the world than this
south-western region of our own country. I cannot doubt that a thorough
comparative examination of these remains would throw a new light upon
the relationship between the ancient and modern civilized tribes, and
upon their connection with their far more civilized Aztec neighbors of
the South. As yet, hardly an attempt at excavation has been made in the
Colorado Valley.

[Illustration: GUALPI.]

There is no other district which embraces in so small a compass so
great a number and variety of the Cliff-dwellers' ruined works as the
cañon of the Little Rio Mancos[1] in South-western Colorado. The stream
rises in a spur of the San Juan Mountains, near the remote mining-camp
called Parrott City. Flowing southward for a few miles through an open
valley, it is soon enclosed between the walls of a profound cañon
which cuts for nearly thirty miles through a tableland called the
Mesa Verde. The cañon is wide enough to permit the old inhabitants to
plant their crops along the stream, and the cliffs rising on either
side to a height of two thousand feet are so curiously broken and
grooved and shelving, from the decay of the soft horizontal strata
and the projection of the harder, as to offer remarkable facilities
for building fortified houses hard of approach and easy of defence.
Therefore the whole length of the cañon is filled with ruins, and
for fifteen miles beyond it to the borders of New Mexico, where the
river meets the Rio San Juan, the valley bears many traces of the
ancient occupation. The scenery of the cañon is wild and imposing in
the highest degree. In the dry Colorado air there are few lichens or
weather-stains to dull the brightness of the strata to the universal
hoariness of moister climates: the vertical cliffs, standing above
long slopes of débris, are colored with the brilliant tints of
freshly-quarried stone. A gay ribbon of green follows the course of the
rivulet winding down through the cañon till it is lost to sight in the
vista of crags. The utter silence and solitude of the wilderness reigns
through the valley. It is not occupied by any savage tribe, and only a
few white men within the last few years have passed through it and told
of its wonders; and yet its whole length is but one series of houses
and temples that were forsaken centuries ago. I can hardly imagine a
more exciting tour of exploration than that which Mr. Jackson's party
made on first entering this cañon in 1874.

Above the entrance of the cañon the evidences of pre-historic
life begin. On the bottom-land, concealed by shrubbery, are the
half-obliterated outlines of square and circular buildings. The houses
were of large size, and were plainly no temporary dwelling-places,
for an accumulation of decorated pottery fills the ground about them,
indicating long occupation. No doubt they were built of adobe--masses
of hard clay dried in the sun--which the wear of ages has reduced to
smoothly-rounded mounds. For some miles down the cañon remains of this
sort occur at short intervals, and at one point there stands a wall
built of squared sandstone blocks. Along the ledges of the cliffs on
the right bits of ruinous masonry are detected here and there, but for
a time there is nothing to excite close attention. At last a watchful
eye is arrested by a more interesting object perched at a tremendous
height on the western wall of the cañon. It is a house built upon a
shelf of rock between the precipices, but, standing seven hundred feet
above the stream and differing not at all in color from the crags about
it, only the sharpest eyesight can detect the unusual form of the
building and the windows marking the two stories. The climb up to the
house-platform is slow and fatiguing, but the trouble is repaid by a
sight of one of the most curious ruins on this continent. Before the
door of the house, part of the ledge has been reserved for a little
esplanade, and to make it broader three small abutments of stone, which
once supported a floor, are built on the sloping edge of the rock.
Beyond this the house is entered by a small aperture which served as a
door. It is the best specimen of a Cliff-dweller's house that remains
to our time. The walls are admirably built of squared stones laid in a
hard white mortar. The house is divided into two stories of three rooms
each. Behind it a semicircular cistern nearly as high as the house is
built against the side of it, and a ladder is arranged for descending
from an upper window to the water-level. The floor of the second story
was supported by substantial cedar timbers, but only fragments of
them remain. The roof, too, has entirely disappeared, but the canopy
of natural rock overhanging serves to keep out the weather. The front
rooms in both stories are the largest and are most carefully finished.
Perhaps they were the parlor and "best bedroom" of some pre-historic
housewife. They are plastered throughout with fine smooth mortar,
and even in that remote age the mania for household decoration had a
beginning: floor, walls and ceiling were colored a deep red, surrounded
by a broad border of white.

The same cliff on which this house stands has on its side many other
ruins--some half destroyed by gradual decay, some crushed by falling
rocks, none so perfect as the one described; but all are crowded into
the strangest unapproachable crevices of the cañon-wall, like the
crannies which swallows choose to hold their nests, far removed from
the possibility of depredation. Some are so utterly inaccessible that
the explorers, with all their enthusiasm and activity, have never been
able to reach them. How any beings not endowed with wings could live at
such points it is hard to conceive: it makes one suspicious that the
Cliff-dwellers had not quite outgrown the habits of monkey ancestors.

As the cañon widens with the descent of the stream, the ruins in the
western wall increase in number. One fearful cliff a thousand feet in
height is chinked all over its face with tiny houses of one room each,
but only a few of them can be detected with the naked eye. One, which
was reached by an explorer at the peril of his life, stands intact:
ceiling and floor are of the natural rock, and the wall is built in a
neat curve conforming to the shape of the ledge.


A mile farther down the stream there is a most interesting group of
houses. Eight hundred feet above the valley there is a shelf in the
cliff sixty feet in length that is quite covered by a house. The
building contains four large rooms, a circular sacred apartment and
smaller rooms of irregular shape. It was called by its discoverers
"The House of the Sixteen Windows." Behind this house the cliff-side
rises smooth and perpendicular thirty feet, but it can be scaled by an
ancient stairway cut into it which ascends to a still higher ledge.
The stairs lead to the very door of another house filling a niche a
hundred and twenty feet long. A great canopy of solid rock overarches
the little fortress, reaching far forward beyond the front wall, while
from below it is absolutely unapproachable except by the one difficult
stairway of niches cut in the rock. In time of war it must have been
impregnable. These dwellings have given more ideas about their interior
furnishing than any of the others. Among the accumulated rubbish were
found corn and beans stored away. In the lower house were two large
water-jars of corrugated pottery standing on a floor covered with
neatly-woven rush matting. In a house not far above were found a bin
of charred corn, and a polished hatchet of stone made with remarkable

From this point onward both the valley and the cliffs are filled with
the traces of a numerous population, every mile of travel bringing many
fresh ones into sight. Among the cliff-houses there is of necessity
a variety in form and size as great as the differences of the caves
and crevices that hold them; but among the buildings of the low
ground there is more uniformity, not only in this cañon, but in all
the valleys of the region. Most of them may be classed as aggregated
dwellings or pueblos with rectangular rooms, round watch-towers and
large circular buildings. To these must be added a few which seem to
have been built only for defence. The straight walls have generally
fallen, except the parts supported by an angle of a building; but, as
usual in old masonry, the circular walls have much better resisted

About midway down the cañon the curved wall of a large ruin rises
above the thicket. It is a building of very curious design. The outer
wall was an exact circle of heavy masonry a hundred and thirty feet in
circumference. Within, there is another circular wall, concentric with
the outer, enclosing one round room with a diameter of twenty feet.
The annular space between the two walls was divided by partitions into
ten small apartments. Other buildings of the same type occur in this
region, some of much larger size and with triple walls. Even in this
one, which is comparatively well preserved, the original height is
uncertain, though the ruin still stands about fifteen feet high. The
vast quantity of débris about some of them indicates that they were
of no insignificant height, and their perfect symmetry of form, the
careful finish of the masonry, the large dimensions and great solidity,
made them the most imposing architectural works of that ancient people.
I find no reason to doubt that they were their temples, and the
presumption is very strong that they were temples for sun-worship. The
occurrence of a circular room in connection with nearly every group of
buildings is of special interest, as seeming to link the Cliff-dwellers
to the modern Pueblo tribes in their religious customs.

Most striking and picturesque of all the ruins are the round
watch-towers. On commanding points in the valley, and on the highest
pinnacles of the cliffs overlooking the surface of the mesa, they occur
with a frequency which is almost pathetic as an indication of the
life of eternal vigilance which was led by that old race through the
years, perhaps centuries, of exterminating warfare which the savage red
men from the North waged upon them. To us the suffering of frontier
families at the hands of the same bloodthirsty savages is heartrending.
What was it to those who saw year by year their whole race's life
withering away, crushed by those wild tribes?

Near the lower end of the cañon stands one of the most perfect of these
towers, rising sixteen feet above the mound on which it is built. It
was once attached to an oblong stone building which seems to have
been a strongly-fortified house. The rectangular walls, as usual, are
prostrate, and have left the tower standing as solitary and picturesque
and as full of mystery as the round-towers of Ireland.

After the stream breaks from its long confinement out into the open
plain of the San Juan Valley the traces of old life are still abundant,
but they present no features very different from those above. At the
cañon's mouth an Indian trail strikes away toward the north-west. It
passes a remarkable group of ruins at a spot called Aztec Springs, and
continues to the McElmo, the next _arroya_, or dry stream-bed, west of
the Rio Mancos. Aztec Springs no longer deserve the name, for within
a short time the last trace of water has disappeared from the spot,
showing that the slow drying up of the great South-west country,
which has been going forward for ages, and which starved out the old
inhabitants, is still progressing. In the dry season there is no water
within many miles of this spot, though it is strewn with the remains
of stone buildings covering several acres and indicating a large
population of industrious people who must have lived by agriculture.
Until a long comparative study has been made of all the remains of this
race it is mere guesswork to estimate the age of the ruins; but when
the prostrate condition of these walls is compared with the state in
which the Chaco ruins of New Mexico are found, and when we consider
that the latter have no doubt been deserted for at least three hundred
and fifty years, it is reasonable to suppose an age of a thousand years
for these massive walls at Aztec Springs. Many other great structures
of this region, which seem to be coeval with these, are situated many
miles away from any perennial water, and the time which has elapsed
since those sites were suitable for large farming-towns must be counted
by centuries. In this group are two large quadrangular buildings with
walls still fifteen feet high, two of the circular estufas, besides a
multitude of half-distinguishable walls of dwellings. It is the largest
group of ruins in Colorado.


Not many miles beyond these so-called springs the trail leads into
the dry bed of the McElmo near its head, and another long succession
of antiquities is entered upon, but to enumerate them further would
be tedious, for the ruins of the Mancos are good representatives of
all those which are found along the courses of the Animas, La Plata,
McElmo, Montezuma, Chelley and other tributary valleys of the San Juan.
Nevertheless, there are a few buildings here and there of some unusual
interest which cannot be passed by without mention. On the verge of a
little side-cañon of the McElmo there is a curious instance of the keen
ingenuity of this people in taking every advantage of the fantastic,
castle-like shapes which Nature has formed out of the cañon-walls.
High on the edge of the mesa appears the ragged outline of a ruinous
watch-tower sharply drawn against the clear, unvarying blue of the sky.
It seems to be a tower of unusual height, but a closer view shows it
to be half of Nature's building. A tall fragment of rock, torn from
its bed, has rolled down the slope to the edge of the steep descent.
This rock the old builders have chosen to crown with a little round
tower where a sentinel, guarding the village behind him from stealthy
attacks, could command a wide sweep of country. The same thing on a
larger scale is found at another point where the dry McElmo meets with
the drier Hovenweep--a tributary without tribute. In this position
stands an enormous rock nearly cubical in shape. Its high sides make
it a natural fortress strong against an enemy without artillery, and
to its natural strength the Cliff-dwellers have added a battlement of
masonry. But among all the ruined strongholds of the region that which
is called the Legendary Rock has a pre-eminent interest on account of
the Moqui romance or tradition which clings to it. The rock is a grand
and solitary crag standing on a plateau of sandstone from which the
soil is washed away. It is far from water: a garrison must have been
dependent wholly on the very precarious rain-supply. About it runs an
outer rampart of stone, and on the rock itself is built a fortress. It
is several years since an aged member of the Moqui tribe first confided
to a white man versed in his language the legend of this rock. It has
been widely published, and considered of much significance. The Moqui
patriarch related how his people in the old time were many. Their tribe
dwelt in the North-east. One year they were visited by strangers from
the North, who came peaceably at first, but came again another year,
and year by year encroached and grew more warlike. At last the Northern
strangers gained the mastery and drove them from their homes. In a
long, slow struggle the Moqui forefathers gradually lost their ground,
till at last they made one final, desperate fight for their old homes
at the fortress of the Legendary Rock. They conquered their besiegers,
but with such fearful carnage that the rocks bear still the stains
of the blood-streams that flowed in that battle, and the remnant of
the besieged were glad to make an unmolested retreat to the mesas of
Arizona, where they dwell to this day.

The story is an interesting one, and has been honored by the explorers
with a place in their government report, for it shows a belief among
the Moquis that those old builders were their kinsmen. But, considering
the fact that the first Spanish discoverers found the Moqui tribe
in nearly the same condition as we see it now, and that this story
therefore must have been handed down for at least three hundred years
among an unlettered people, I am as much disposed to distrust the other
details of it as I am to doubt that the red iron-stains in the rock
were caused by the blood of their ancestors.

In the neighboring Montezuma Cañon, just beyond the State border, there
are some remains built after an unusual manner with stones of great
size. One building of many rooms, nearly covering a little solitary
mesa, is constructed of huge stone blocks not unlike the pre-historic
masonry of Southern Europe. In the same district there is a ruined line
of fortification from which the smaller stones have fallen away and
are crumbling to dust, leaving only certain enormous upright stones
standing. They rise to a height of seven feet above the soil, and the
lower part is buried to a considerable depth. Their resemblance to the
hoary Druidical stones of Carnac and Stonehenge is striking, and there
is nothing in their appearance to indicate that they belong to a much
later age than those primeval monuments of Europe.

All the certain knowledge that we have of the history and manners of
the Cliff-dwellers may be very briefly told, for there is no written
record of their existence except their own rude picture-writing
cut or painted on the cañon-walls, and it is not likely that those
hieroglyphics will ever be deciphered. But much may be inferred from
their evident kinship to the Moquis of our time; and the resemblance
of the ancient architecture and ceramics to the arts as they are
still practised in the degenerate pueblos of Arizona gives us many
intimations in regard to the habits of the Cliff-dwellers.

It was centuries ago--how long a time no one will ever know--when that
old race was strong and numerous, filling the great region from the Rio
Grande to the Colorado of the West, and from the San Juan Mountains
far down into Northern Mexico. They must have numbered many hundreds
of thousands, perhaps millions. It is not probable that they were
combined under one government or that they were even closely leagued
together, but that they were essentially one in blood and language is
strongly indicated by the similarity of their remains. That they were
sympathetic in a common hostility to the dangerous savage tribes about
them can hardly be doubted. They were of peaceful habits and lived by
agriculture, having under cultivation many thousands of acres in the
rich river-bottoms, which they knew well how to irrigate from streams
swollen in summer by the melting snows of the high mountain-ranges.
We read of their dry canals in Arizona, so deep that a mounted
horseman can hide in them. We know that they raised crops of corn
and beans, and in the south cotton, which they skilfully wove. That
they had commercial dealings across their whole country is shown by
the quantity of shell-ornaments brought from the Pacific coast which
are found in their Colorado dwellings. They did not understand the
working of metals, but their implements of stone are of most excellent
workmanship. Their weapons indicate the practice of hunting, and while
the race was still numerous their forts and their sharp obsidian arrows
made easy their resistance to the wandering savage hordes.


I believe that no instance can be cited of a people still in their
Stone Age who have surpassed that old race in the mason's art: indeed,
I doubt if any such people has even approached their skill in that
respect. The difficulty of constructing a great work of well-squared,
hammer-dressed stones is enormously increased if the masons must work
only with stone implements. Imagine the infinite, toilsome patience of
a people who in such a way could rear the ancient Pueblo Bonito of New
Mexico, five hundred and forty feet long, three hundred and fourteen
wide and four stories high! In one wall of a neighboring building of
stone less carefully dressed it is estimated that there were originally
no less than thirty million pieces, which were transported, fashioned
and laid by men without a beast of burden or a trowel, chisel or hammer
of metal.

Nothing marks more strikingly the vast advance which these people had
made from the condition of their savage neighbors than their evident
efforts not only for household comfort, but even for the beautifying
of their homes. I have referred to the rush-carpeted floor of the
"House of the Sixteen Windows" and the decorated walls of the two-story
house on the Mancos; but they, like other semicivilized peoples,
found the first expression for their love of the beautiful in the
ceramic art. The variety of graceful forms and decorations found in
their pottery is endless. In some regions the country for miles is
strewn with the fragments of their earthenware. The ware is usually
pale gray shading to white: the decoration is in black or red, often
in the angular designs commonly called "Greek patterns." The Moquis
of our time produce a handsome ware closely resembling that of the
ancient people. But the old cliff-painters and the modern potters often
sacrificed beauty to a passion for producing the most wildly-grotesque
forms. There is a certain general resemblance, which often strikes me
forcibly, but which is almost indefinable, between the ceramic and
sculptured forms of the Mississippi Mound-builders, the Pueblo tribes
and the ancient Mexicans. The resemblance seems to lie partly in a
certain capacity which those peoples possessed in common of producing
the most frightfully-grotesque forms ever evolved by the human
imagination--forms plainly intended to suggest living beings, yet not
at all transgressing the injunction against "anything that is in the
heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the waters
under the earth." The resemblance seems to me very significant.

At the time of the Spanish conquest the Pueblo tribes were worshippers
of the sun and fire, like all the races of this continent which were
above barbarism. To-day, even in those pueblos where a corrupted form
of the Roman faith is accepted, there are traces of the old sun-worship
mingled with it, and in all pueblos there are large circular rooms
called estufas reserved for councils and for worship. The invariable
appearance of estufas among the ruined towns, and even on the ledges
of the cliffs, shows what sacredness was attached to the circular room,
which perhaps was symbolic of the sun's orb: it indicates a unity of
religious faith between the ancients and moderns.

The priest who chronicled the events of the first expedition to New
Mexico was impressed with the great ruined towns which they saw
even before crossing the desert of Arizona. There is good reason to
believe that the cliff-dwellings, the last retreats of a persecuted
people, were abandoned before that time. But how could a people so
numerous, intelligent and civilized fall a prey to stupid, roving
savages? The wild tribes never could have won the fight against their
more quick-witted neighbors if the ancients had not begun their own

The story which they have left recorded on the face of the country
is of this sort. At some very remote time they began agriculture in
the valleys of the South-west. They found the rainfall of the region
too limited for farming without irrigation, but the whole country
was intersected by streams fed through summer by the snows of the
mountain-tops and the abundant springs of the wooded slopes and
uplands. Thus their crops were watered and yielded increase with a
regularity unknown to farmers who must look to the summer rainfall
for success. The people prospered, multiplied and spread over a wide
country. In every green valley rose their great common dwellings and
circular temples. By superior numbers and intelligence they were
strong against their enemies. But the spreading population required a
great wood-supply. The finest of the trees were felled for timbering
their houses, and whole forests were swept away to give them fuel and
perhaps to feed perpetual sacred fires. The country was all too little
watered at the best, and the mountain-sides, once stripped of their
covering, oftentimes dried up and no new growth of trees appeared. Old
men began to observe that the streams did not maintain their even flow
through the whole year as when they were young, and lamented the good
old times when there was no lack of water for irrigation. The streams
began to be swollen with disastrous floods in spring and winter, and
to dwindle away alarmingly in summer. So through centuries the gradual
destruction of the wood brought ever-increasing drought, and drought
led in its train famine, disease and wholesale death. The people were
decimated and discouraged, and on the northern frontier began to be at
the mercy of savage raiders. They fled from their pleasant valley-homes
to hide in caves and dens of the earth, and built the cliff-dwellings.
There a remnant lingered in unceasing fear of the foes who coveted the
fruits of their toil; but even from these refuges they were driven
ages ago. Where they used to build villages and cultivate fields
are now barren gulches where two or three times a year a resistless
flood rushes down from the mountains that can no longer retain their
moisture. Thus ended their national suicide.


It was a strange ignorance that led them to their own destruction, was
it not? Yet we as a nation from Maine to California are recklessly
working the same ruin. We are stripping our mountains a hundred times
more rapidly than they, but who cares whether the forests are restored?

As a child I played and bathed in a pretty tumbling brook among the
Litchfield hills, and wondered that so small a stream but fifty years
before had given power to all the mills now ruined on its banks. Twenty
years more have passed, and now in the heat of summer there is hardly
water for a child to bathe. The hills are stripped, the stream has
dwindled, but the spring floods tear through the valley like a deluge.
Even the larger streams that still turn the mill-wheels and make the
wealth of Connecticut are not the trusty servants that they once were.
In summer they grow weak and must be supplemented with steam, and at
times they rise in fury and carry destruction before them. It is the
beginning of woes, but our Atlantic slope with its heavy rainfall
cannot easily be changed to a desert. In the far West it is different.
Colorado, Nevada and California, with a less regular rainfall and
with greater floods and smaller streams, would soon find the desert
encroaching on the habitable land. But in these very States the waste
of timber is most extravagant. Mining-camps and cities devour the
woods about them, and in every dry summer many hundred square miles
are burned by the recklessness of Indians and white men. Where the
Californian mountains have been cleared, the browsing millions of sheep
keep down all new growth, and, bringing great wealth in our age, they
threaten to impoverish posterity.

The dreary experiment has been tried by the ancient races of both
continents. Why should we repeat it? The question should command the
earnest attention of State and national governments. In our own land
already one old race has wrought its own destruction in this same way.


[Footnote 1: In studying the ruins of the Mancos and neighboring cañons
I have made constant use of the reports of explorations by Mr. W.
H. Jackson and Mr. W. H. Holmes in _Bulletins of U. S. Geolog. and
Geograph. Survey_, Second Series, No. 1, and _Annual Report_ of the
same survey for 1876.]



The study of the industrial arts of India, if the warnings of learned
Orientalists are to be of any avail, is not a matter to be rashly
undertaken. All Indian art must be viewed in reference to Indian
religion. Forms, materials and colors have meanings that can only be
caught by familiar acquaintance with a symbolism both intricate and
obscure. Little decorative touches that to the untaught Western eye are
introduced merely to give an artistic finish to an involved design, or
to give room for bringing in the bit of color demanded by the sense of
harmony, have all a meaning not necessarily connected with art. While
in the West the problems of art are dealt with by men whose eyes are
bent on art alone, the Oriental artist solves these problems while
keeping his eyes fixed upon religion. The maturity of Indian religious
life was reached several centuries before our era began: it then took
a form which it still retains. There is no secular life from which it
can be distinguished. When a domestic utensil is examined, the first
question to be answered is, What religious meaning attaches to it?
This is an appalling fact, for it means that the arts of India cannot
be appreciated as the Hindus appreciate them until we have mastered an
accumulation of mythological and legendary lore such as possibly no
other country has amassed.


To appreciate the full extent of a task that already seems to hang
like a shadow over the whole of what yet remains of one's life, it
may be pointed out that the Vedas form only one of four groups of
sacred writings, that there are four Vedas, and that each one of the
four consists of four parts. Then there are Upa-Vedas, Ved-Angas and
Upangas; and under the last-named fall the epics of the _Ramayana_,
of ninety-six thousand lines, and the _Mahabharata_, of two hundred
and twenty thousand long lines, not to mention others. These are mere
glimpses into a vista long and dark, and it seems a little odd that
one should be called upon to go through so much in order to appreciate
a specimen of carving from Vizagapatam, an inlaid table-top from
Agra, a box of Cashmere lacquer or a panel of carved sandal-wood from
Canara. The fact is, that the matter may be looked at from another
point of view--that taken up by those who decline to see anything in
a painting but canvas and paint--who care for nothing in the shape
of sentiment or story, but have a single eye to art. In this way the
beauty and harmony of Oriental coloring, the delicacy and wonderful
finish in all manner of carvings, the skill displayed in inlaying and
chasing--in a word, all the points of industrial art in India--may be
both enjoyed and understood without a reference to the Puranas or the
Code of Manu, or without the observer's being able to enumerate the
avatars of Vishnu. The inquirer is thus borne up against the deterrent
influence of specialists, with the plaintive notes of whose voice he
has become in all probability elsewhere familiar. It is the same voice,
to all intents and purposes, that haunts the graves of Egypt, the
ruins of Rhag[oe], the tombs of Etruria and Magna Græcia, the workshops
of King-teh-chin and the mounds of Pachacamac. It is heard, in short,
all round the world, and its burden is ever the same: "Understand the
religion of a people before peering into their arts." The obvious
answer comes: Life is short and art is long: if to art religion be
prefixed, all knowledge of art is at an end. It would be pleasant, no
doubt, to tell at a glance what legend or myth is represented on a
Greek vase, but meantime we can admire the form. It would be equally
pleasant to be able to interpret the painting on a Chinese historical
vase, but meantime we can admire the colors. So with Egypt, Persia and
Peru: it will be well for the many to get at the industrial secrets of
these countries if they never obtain even a glimpse of the underlying
religious idea of the craftsman.

It is merely thrown out as a suggestion by the way, and without any
intention of belittling the importance of studying the superstitions
and philosophies of the world or of aiming at something more than a
strictly industrial view of industrial art, that so much attention may
be bestowed upon religions as the sources of ideas as to obscure the
form and manner of their expression in art. Possibly the formation of
an Indian museum at South Kensington may be productive of a longing
desire to become acquainted with Rama and the lovely Sita, the strong
Arjuna and the beauteous Draupadi; but it is hardly likely that
this was the object of its formation or that it will lead to the
acquisition of any more abstruse knowledge than such as comprises
the weaving of rich textures, the blending of gay colors, or the
industrial arts of damascening, carving and working in gold and silver
and precious stones. In what has here to be said, at all events, only
such references will be made to religion and legend as are absolutely
necessary to a general understanding of the conditions under which
Indian art has developed, and of the forms under which it is most
frequently seen.

The Indian Museum--or rather the collection forming the Indian section
of the South Kensington Museum--is of very recent formation. It may
be said to have grown without developing. Its nucleus was formed in
the days of the East India Company, and was stored in a little museum
in Leadenhall street. There it long remained, and one of its chief
attractions was Tippoo's tiger, now occupying a place of honor near
the musical instruments, to which it bears some kind of a relation.
The "tiger" is a wooden animal of ferocious aspect represented in the
act of tearing a prostrate European soldier dressed in the military
red coat and wearing a broad-brimmed felt hat of decidedly civil make.
It was taken at the fall of Seringapatam, and was probably made by
some European artificer for the delectation of the Tippoo Sultan. If
not symbolical it was undoubtedly suggestive of pleasant thoughts to
Tippoo, although as a musical instrument it could never have been
much of a success. To tickle the sultan's ear the tiger when wound up
emitted startling roars and groans, while its victim feebly moaned.
But on a certain festive occasion after the "tiger" was brought to
England the winding-up was unfortunately overdone, and long afterward
the soldier stoically declined to moan. The odd musical toy has been
brightened up to suit its new home, and its internal construction has
also received proper attention to such purpose that the roaring can
be reduced to something like method by merely passing the hand over a
keyboard, and the resuscitated struggling red-coat moans as lustily as
he did in the palmy days at Seringapatam.

Such is the instrument which played an important part in the Leadenhall
Street Museum. When the East India Company passed away and the British
government assumed the direct control of India, the tiger and all the
other curiosities were sent first to Fife House, and thence to the
India Office. The latter step was possibly taken on the advice of
some utilitarian who wished to bring within reach of the officials an
opportunity of acquiring some knowledge of India. Any such object was


The director and curator were the only individuals known to visit
the collection. It was then sent to South Kensington and placed in a
temporary building, but still nobody looked in upon the tiger and the
jade, the carvings and Bidri-work. They were still under the control of
the India Office, and at length became a burden to it. Their failure
to interest the public naturally led to a desire to transfer the
responsibility of guardianship. This is not to be wondered at. The
collection had, as has already been pointed out, merely grown in bulk.
It was promiscuous in the worst sense. It consisted of a fortuitous
concourse of articles taken in war or bought upon no ostensible system
in peace. To these old Indian officers occasionally made testamentary
additions of things picked up in their travels or acquired by
inheritance or otherwise. International exhibitions have always been
good for museums. The unsalable is often valuable, and exhibitions have
been a source from which the Indian collection has reaped many solid
benefits. Thus the accumulation increased in bulk and intrinsic value,
but practically it still continued valueless. It was neither arranged
nor inventoried. It continued to illustrate little more than the manner
of its accumulation. Very naturally, the India Office in looking for
relief from a useless burden turned first to the Science and Art
Department under which South Kensington was flourishing. Its offer of a
transfer was at first declined, but the authorities at the India Office
would take no refusal. Their object was at once to get rid of the
collection and of the cost of maintaining it, and at the same time to
preserve its representative character and such individual identity as
it possessed. They ultimately succeeded in both respects, though their
success was not perfect. A part, including the collections of economic
botany of wild Indian silk and lac, went to Kew. The zoological
collection is in the hands of the trustees of the British Museum, and
will eventually take its place in the new Natural History Museum at
South Kensington. To the British Museum have gone the Indian Buddhist
sculptures, but casts of these may hereafter be placed in the Indian
Museum: certainly, in view of the influence of architectural decoration
upon industrial art, they seem necessary to its completeness. All else
was on the first of January last handed over to the Science and Art
Department, and came under the management and control of Sir Philip
Cunliffe-Owen, K. E. M. G., C. B. and director at South Kensington.
It was characteristic of Sir Philip that he should undertake to have
within six months a collection arranged and ready for public inspection
which had not for twenty years been seen in anything like order. It
had never before been catalogued, and had never before been so placed
that it could be seen intelligently or at one view. The first thing
to be done was the drawing up of an inventory. This work occupied six
weeks, and on its completion the discovery was made that the collection
was altogether inadequate to its purpose. It represented neither the
arts nor the industries of India, and gave a very disjointed view of
the resources of that country. The work, however, went on. Sir Philip
used all his influence, both personal and official, to supplement
defective departments. He made purchases and applied for loans. Her
Majesty, the prince of Wales and the duke of Edinburgh made selections
from their magnificent collections, and others were not slow to follow
their example. The result was that in his race against time Sir Philip
won by more than a month, making allowance for what has yet to be done
with the contributions still being made. Few other men could have won
a victory so complete with such apparent ease, because there are not
many who could have imbued contributors with similar confidence or so
thoroughly inspired an entire department with his own spirit of energy
and well-regulated activity. A word or two may be said of his career.

His father was Charles Cunliffe-Owen, a captain in the royal navy, and
at the age of twelve Philip entered the same service. He served for
five years in the Mediterranean and the West Indies, and at seventeen
was obliged by ill health to retire, but taking with him the habits a
naval career was well calculated to engender or develop of promptitude
and decision. After a rest of a few years he was appointed to the
Science and Art Department, and gradually won the notice and confidence
of his superiors. He was quick of apprehension, prompt in action and
accurate in execution. Sir Henry Cole recognized these qualities in
him, and entrusted him with the post of one of the superintendents
of the Paris Exhibition of 1855. A few years took him upward through
the rank of deputy-general superintendent of South Kensington Museum
to that of assistant director in 1860. At subsequent international
exhibitions he filled various offices as follows: at London, in
1862, director of the foreign sections; at Paris, in 1867, assistant
executive commissioner; at Vienna, in 1873, secretary to the royal
British commission; at Philadelphia, in 1876, executive commissioner;
and at Paris, in 1878, secretary of the royal British commission.
Meanwhile, in 1873, he was created a Companion of the Bath, and was
advanced to the directorship of the South Kensington and Bethnal Green
Museums on its becoming vacant by the retirement of Sir Henry Cole. In
1878 he received the honor of knighthood.

A good linguist and possessing rare tact and wonderful executive
ability, Sir Philip has succeeded where many of his countrymen
fail--namely, in making a favorable impression upon foreigners.
Prepossessing in appearance and manner, he can dash through business
at a speed calculated to astonish men of less energy and of a lower
vitality, and he does it, moreover, without the faintest taint of the
_brusquerie_ which almost as a rule bristles all over the less capable
official. Red tape he abhors, and is as easy of access as a republican.
He transacts his business as it arises, knows nothing of arrears, keeps
nobody waiting, rises early, works incessantly, drinks nothing stronger
than tea, has no office-hours and no rules--making both subservient to
the business in hand, instead of following the example of the greater
part of the world in fitting business to rule and time--and is only a
little forgetful of social engagements. Such is the man to whom more
than any other the credit is due of India's being first fairly if not
fully represented in Europe by a museum containing specimens of all its
native arts and industries.

[Illustration: R. REID. DEL.

Certain general impressions will be received from a walk through the
galleries and from a hurried view of the sculptures, textile fabrics,
arms, pottery, jewelry, furniture, lacquer and metal-work. Forms,
combinations and decorative styles will catch the eye which seem not
new, but merely changed from something seen elsewhere, as the ear will
catch a well-known melody running through a profusion of intricate
variations. The alternative questions occur: Is India the home of all
the arts? or, Has it no original art? In one place stands a small
table of Cashmere lacquer in which a great part of the decoration is
surely Chinese: a small gold cup has a sculpturesque decoration as
surely Greek. Here is a coffee-pot of Mongolian type, and a parcel-gilt
vase of Greek: there are gold dishes after the Saracenic, inlaid-work
decidedly Persian, and mosaic-work most certainly Florentine.

It is long since the connoisseur of Indian art awakened from the dream
that India has been an isolated country. The fact is, that it lies in
the way of all commerce between the far East and the West, and that
it can be, and has been, approached as easily from land as from the
sea. It has a long legendary history, but a comparatively short real
history. The immigration of the Aryan race is said to have taken place
about B.C. 3101, but from that period until the rise of Buddhism,
in the sixth century B.C., there is nothing to guide us but legend.
Putting aside what may have been learned of India by the Greeks from
the troops from the Panjab and Afghanistan which swelled the gigantic
army of Xerxes, Alexander's invasion of India (B.C. 327) may be
said to have really opened the way to the acquisition by the Greeks
of something like an exact though partial knowledge of the country
pronounced by Herodotus the wealthiest and most populous in the world.
In truth, the writings of Greeks who accompanied Alexander, and of
Chinese pilgrims, and some temple-inscriptions, constitute the basis of
Indian history. The commerce of India at a very early period extended
far and wide. Arrian, an Alexandrian merchant of the second century,
mentions the muslins of the Ganges, cloths of all sorts, colored shawls
and sashes, purple goods, gold embroidery, lac, steel, jewels, perfumes
and spices. How long this trade had been going on we cannot say. It
was, however, encouraged by the Ptolemies, who established a port on
the Red Sea and organized a system of conveyance by means of caravans
to the Nile, and so to Alexandria. In this way Indian manufactures
reached Europe, while the Persians were at the same time carrying on an
extensive trade in the same materials. The Indians further contributed
to the advance of commerce by becoming road-builders, and thus bringing
the manufacturing places along the valley of the Ganges into connection
with the Panjab in the north-west and with ports and trading-stations
in the west and south. Thus, Egypt and Assyria were brought into
commercial intercourse with the eastern tract of the valley of the
Ganges--that lying between the modern Allahabad and Calcutta. That
commerce spread in other directions there can be no doubt. Within three
centuries of the foundation of Buddhism it had penetrated to Ceylon,
and reached Tibet and China in the first century of our era. Let us
look at one stupendous fact as indicative of international intercourse
with India--namely, that Buddhism, which has all but disappeared from
the land of its birth, is at the present moment the religion of about
five hundred millions of human beings occupying the continent of Asia
from the Caspian to the Pacific, from Tartary to China and Japan.

Leaving both religion and commerce aside--the latter of which might
have been brought down to the opening of maritime intercourse between
Europe and the far East by way of the Cape--there have yet to be taken
into consideration the several invasions of India, which afford yet
another possible explanation of the manner in which its arts may have
been affected by contact with foreigners.


There were many schisms among the Buddhists between the sixth and third
centuries before our era, but in power their community grew year by
year. Asoka brought all Northern India under his power, and, becoming
a good Buddhist, sent missionaries all over India from Cashmere
to Ceylon. After his death India was for some centuries under the
Indo-Scythians, until the fourth century of our era. From that time
Buddhism declined rapidly. The Brahmans were ever its enemies, and
toward the eighth century began to push northward from the retreats
they had sought when Brahmanism, a thousand years before, had given
way to Buddhism. About the same time began the Arab invasions which
ultimately led to the establishment of Mohammedan rule. This was the
beginning of about twelve hundred years of war. The Arabs came first
in A.D. 664, and again in 711. The Turkomans entered the Panjab in
976, and the Afghan dynasties of Mahmud of Gazni and Mohammed of Ghor
followed in the tenth and twelfth centuries. The third Afghan dynasty
established its rule at Delhi in the thirteenth century. With this
century we approach the conquests of Chingis Khan in Central Asia and
of Hulaku Khan, and then in rapid succession came the Mohammedan
incursions into the Dekkan and the Mongolian subjugation of India,
which was begun in 1298, carried on by Tamerlane in 1398, and completed
in 1526 by Sultan Baber. The Mogul period ended with the British
conquests of 1803 and 1817.

If the rise and fall of these various tides of commerce and war are
followed, it will be seen that not only has India not been an isolated
country, but, on the contrary, through a hundred channels it has held
communication with the world beyond the Himalayas. Its art has no doubt
been affected by such intercourse. The effect of architectural forms
upon the decorations made use of in industrial art has already been
referred to; and when we find that the Buddhists acquired a knowledge
of the use of stone in building from the Greeks and Persians, we at
once see why Doctor Leitner's collection of fragments of sculpture from
Peshawur in the north of the Panjab, and now in the museum, should be
called Græco-Buddhistic. Indian architecture is based upon Greek, and
the influence of the latter lasted so long that Mr. Fergusson, who has
made a special study of Hindu temples, says that he could not find
anywhere in Cashmere the slightest trace of the bracketed capital of
the Hindus, but that the Doric or quasi-Doric column is found all along
the valley in temples dating from the eighth to the twelfth century.
Doctor Birdwood, again, has succeeded in tracing the inlaid woodwork or
marquetry of India from Shiraz in Persia to Sindh, Bombay and Surat.
Further, the mosaic-work of Agra is of Florentine extraction, having
been introduced by Austin de Bordeaux in the seventeenth century, and
recently revived.


Let these examples suffice to show that India did not originate all the
arts it now practises. Unfortunately, all that has been borrowed by it
has not been to its advantage--such as the Dutch black-wood carving
at Bombay--and it is scarcely possible that Anglo-Indian art will add
anything to the laurels won by the workmen of the same presidency. It
is moreover to be feared that the machine-made dry goods of England,
the French patterns of Cashmere, the introduction of machinery, the
absorption of hand-weavers by factories, and, above all other things,
the establishment of art-schools, may ultimately break down the
barriers which for two thousand years and more have, in spite of war,
commerce and the introduction of new arts, preserved in the work of the
art-craftsmen of India an element essentially indigenous.

Many conservative agencies were no doubt at work in preserving to
Indian art a distinctively national character. Amongst these the
religious epics and the Code of Manu come first. Of the former, those
already referred to, the _Ramayana_ and the _Mahabharata_, show what
the art and life of the Hindus were between the fifth and the third
centuries before Christ. The Code gave them a form which they preserve
to-day in at least all essential respects. The arts have been handed
down from father to son for countless generations, and traditional
skill has reached its high perfection chiefly by the village-system
of the Code. The centre of the political interest of the Hindu is his
own village. In our sense of the word he has no country, but he has a
village home, and his loyalty is absorbed by the administrators of that
home's affairs. He is unmoved either by conquest or commerce. His life
has crystallized into a certain form. It is the life his forefathers
led, and it is the life his children will lead. His village is to all
intents and purposes an independent community. This is the account of
a traveller: "Outside the entrance, on an exposed rise of ground, the
hereditary potter sits by his wheel moulding the swift-revolving clay
by the natural curves of his hands. At the back of the houses which
form the low irregular street there are two or three looms at work in
blue and scarlet and gold, the frames hanging between the acacia trees,
the yellow flowers of which drop fast on the webs as they are being
woven. In the streets the brass- and copper-smiths are hammering away
at their pots and pans; and farther down, in the veranda of the rich
man's house, is the jeweller working rupees and gold mohrs into fair
jewelry--gold and silver ear-rings and round tires like the moon,
bracelets and nose-rings and tablets, and tinkling ornaments for the
feet--taking his designs from the fruits and flowers around him or from
the traditional forms represented in the paintings and carvings of the
great temple which rises above the groves of mangoes and palms at the
end of the street above the lotus-covered village-tank." By and by the
work-day closes with feasting and music and the songs chosen from the
religious epics. In the morning the same routine begins again: the same
sounds are heard, the same sights seen, the same pleasures indulged in.
It is the life of the Code and of the great epics--a happy, contented,
frugal and, in a sense, cultured life, based upon a religion which
gave it expression and form long before our era began, and fenced it
in from the influences of external change. All its conquerors have
succumbed to the social and religious life of India. They came and
found themselves within a magic circle. All that they brought of art
was Indianized. A new art meant nothing more than a new illustration of
Hindu religion. We have seen the craftsmen at work, and the fountain
of their inspiration is not far to seek when we are told that the
stories of the _Ramayana_ and the _Mahabharata_ are told nightly all
over India to listening millions. Let us suppose the village-festival
is approaching its close. Then "a reverend Brahman steps upon the scene
with the familiar bundle of inscribed palm-leaves in his hands, and,
sitting down and opening them one by one upon his lap, slow and lowly
begins his antique chant, and late into the starry night holds his
hearers, young and old, spellbound by the story of the pure loves of
Rama and Sita, or of Draupadi who too dearly loved the bright Arjuna,
and the doom of the froward sons of Dhritarashtra."


Can we wonder, then, that from these legends of the heroic age are
taken figures for the sculptor, scenes for the carver and the graver,
and subjects for the jeweller and the worker in ivory? Religion is thus
the greater conservator of Indian art as it appeared in its earlier
forms, and reduces into conformity with it all that comes from abroad.

Further agencies toward the same end are the caste-system, in the large
cities trade-guilds--or, as we would call them, trades unions--and,
finally, hereditary offices in both village and city. Under the
village-system artisans may be said to have undergone successive
generations of training, and the result is that in a country where
_manufacture_ means, literally, "making by hand," any object of
industrial art represents the development of hereditary skill. His
craftsmanship is the father's richest legacy to his son.

One point more deserves consideration. In America and Europe nearly
everything is done by machinery: in India nearly everything is made by
hand. Whatever is done, therefore, is the expression of a thought; and
that art in the East is not trammelled by tradition may be inferred
not less from the variety of its productions than from the Indianizing
process to which foreign arts are subjected. The hand leaves almost
unconsciously the impress of the workman's individuality. There is room
there for patronage to lead to superexcellence. The saving of time
and rapidity of output are not important objects when a prince lends
his encouragement to art and his influence to its elevation. In the
East--in China, in Persia and in India--artisans have worked directly
under the imperial power. All that was asked of them was good work. In
India offices of this kind were, in the imperial workshop as in the
villages, hereditary; and without trouble about subsistence, without
a thought of time, without limit in expense--without, in short, one
disturbing element--the art-workers labored only for their art and for
the approval of their king or chief. In the museum is a rug of silk
woven by deft fingers which have for possibly three centuries been
still. Four hundred knots occupy every square inch, and the size of the
rug leads to the total of three and a half millions of knots, between
every two of which the pattern demanded a change in the treadles of
the loom. We turn from this to a bowl of jade beautifully engraved
upon which were expended the labors of three generations of workers in
the employ of the emperors of Delhi. It is in this way the best work
of all kinds is produced to-day. Spinning, weaving and embroidering
are, moreover, practised all over the country in the homes of the rich
and in the dwellings of the poor. "Every house in India," says Doctor
Birdwood, "is a nursery of the beautiful." The words are suggestive.
They imply that correct taste is best formed by practice. We who
have lectures on decorative art and technological schools live in
too fast an age ever to rival the industrial art of India, and shall
in our hurry do well if we arrive at something like an understanding
appreciation of the works of the villagers of Hindostan.


The general attributes of Indian art as displayed in the museum
are richness of decoration, great manipulative skill, good taste,
brilliancy, harmony of color, intricacy of decorative forms, and the
due subserviency of both color and design to decorative effect. Nearly
all these qualities are illustrated by the textile fabrics, the dresses
and turbans, the horse and elephant caparisons, the carpets and the
rich canopies of the howdahs. These are the tissues that spread the
fame of India on every side. It is not known how long it has possessed
the art of weaving. Possibly it originated in the Valley of Roses or by
the banks of the sacred Ganges. The weaving of silk India appears to
have borrowed from China, but when or how it first wove silk we cannot
tell, any more than we can tell when first it wove its marvellous gold
brocades or gauzy muslins. It was weaving cotton in times beyond the
realm of history, and continues weaving it to-day all over the Panjab,
Sindh, Rajputana, Oudh, Bengal, the Central Provinces, in Assam, Bombay
and Madras. The prince of Wales obtained a few pieces of the famous
muslin of Dacca, requiring about six yards to weigh an ounce. Of this
kind one was called _shabnam_, or "dew of the evening," because if laid
upon the grass it became undistinguishable from the dew; another was
called _bafthowa_, or "woven air;" a third was called _abrawan_, or
"running water," because when placed in water it became invisible. Even
the prince's pieces weigh nearly twice as much as the older tissues.
Indian lace in gold or silver, cotton or silk, is in texture and design
the highest representative of that most beautiful fabric. The brocades
are glories of color and rich with glittering flowers of gold, and the
embroidery on velvet, silk, wool or cotton is both pleasing and rich.
The museum contains several examples of the gorgeous embroideries
of the Dekkan, and we find in one or two of the costumes and some of
the fans a beautiful embroidery of shining green beetle-wings and
gold. As to the carpets, they are as a rule satisfying to the eye and
possess a general simplicity of design blended with richness of color.
In all the more brilliant textile fabrics of India warmth is secured
without violence of contrast; and one fact it will be well for Western
manufacturers to study--namely, that floral or animal decoration is
invariably flat.


In furniture the Hindus do not follow the prevailing American rule:
with them, the less furniture the better. There are, however, specimens
from Bombay of their works upon forms supplied by Europe--as, for
example, two sofas and a high-backed chair, the backs of which are so
perforated that they seem as cool and light as cane. A sideboard from
Bombay has its top and panels so perforated that one wonders how long
a time it took to weave the endless flower-stems of the design and to
carve the fruits and flowers and the griffin-like monsters that support
the upper shelf. Some of the heavy, deep-cut flower-stands are less
pleasing. On the other hand, a dark wood stand from Ahmedabad is carved
in a fine, close and perforated pattern which is altogether appropriate
and admirable. It seems to have been made in parts. The bottom or
stand is solid and deeply cut in twining snakes and leaves: to this is
fastened the lowest section, hollow and perforated in a floral design;
above this is another of a different design; a third section supports
the vase and cover, which are also perforated. The work throughout is
elaborate and exquisite. A good deal of the furniture and many of the
tables, trays and boxes or coffers are variously lacquered and colored,
but when color is used lavishly it is never inharmonious. Ivory is
frequently employed in conjunction with ebony, and the effect is often
striking. The carving of ivory is practised in many parts of India, and
the Berhampore stately state-barges with their rowers all in position,
and the elephants with howdahs on their finely-modelled backs, are all
that need be mentioned, though there are numberless objects that come
from Bombay carved in low relief or perforated. Even after the small
ivories and the larger chess-tables, cots and palanquins in which ivory
is employed, the sandal-wood carving is amongst the most attractive in
the museum. There is a model of a doorway from Ahmedabad cut after a
microscopic pattern, and all around are designs, some mythological and
others purely naturalistic. The low-relief foliated ornamentation of
Bombay seems more attractive than the mythological designs of Canara
and Mysore, or than the mixed foliated and mythological designs of
Ahmedabad, possibly because the Western mind finds less to sympathize
with in the figures of the Hindu Pantheon than in the exuberant wealth
of India's gorgeous flowers and shady groves.

There are many carvings in horn and tortoise-shell from Vizagapatam and
Belgaum; pots, vases, bowls and bottles in marble of various colors,
solid, mottled and variegated; in soapstone, flowers, and notably a
model of a tomb, in which the most minute details are reproduced;
and specimens of the original Florentine inlaid marble-work of Agra.
In the latter we find white marble inlaid after various designs
with agate, chalcedony, topaz, jasper, garnet, lapis-lazuli, coral,
crystal, carnelian, and even with pearls, turquoises, amethysts and
sapphires. It demands judgment in the selection of the stones, skill
in their handling and taste in their arrangement in order to be what
may worthily be called artistic. It is ever too easy to perpetrate the
grossest crimes against good taste in the richest materials, and it is
the crowning glory of the industrial art of India that mere richness
of effect is never sought at the expense of taste.


Lac is used in an endless variety of ways--from making lacquered
walking-sticks, boxes, toys and bangles to bracelets and beads. The
best work is found in house-decoration and furniture. In the case of
some of the Sindh boxes the decorative design is worked out by covering
the box with successive layers of variously-colored lacquer and then
cutting away the pattern to the depth required by the color-treatment.
Sometimes metal rings appear to be let into incisions, and again the
decoration consists exclusively of surface-painting in bright colors.
The latter is found upon the _papier-mâché_ of Cashmere, which ranks
with the best lac-work of India.

We pass the pottery, merely noting the beauty of the colors, and
especially of the turquoise-blue, and the graceful simplicity of some
of the early forms, the trappings and caparisons, and glance round the
magnificent collection of arms, from the rough robbers' clubs bound
with serrated iron to the finest chain-mail and rifles inlaid with
gold. From Sindh comes a flintlock gun having the barrel inlaid and
plated with gold at the muzzle and breech, and bearing an inscription
inlaid in gold. Round the muzzle are set nine uncut rubies, and an
emerald forms the "sight." The stock is rosewood, curved and expanding
at the butt, enriched with mounts of chased gold, and attached to the
barrel by three perforated and chased gold bands. In some cases the
woodwork is almost obscured by the gold ornaments. On all sides are
weapons richly chased and damascened in gold. Weapons are there of
the steel that Persia, and even Damascus, never equalled, and they
come, as to a masquerade of the dread weapons of war, with handles
of crystal, of jade set with rubies and emeralds, of gold and green
enamel set all over with table diamonds, and sheathed in green velvet
scabbards gleaming with diamonds and fitted with cap, band and chape of
green-enamelled gold.

If this people carried such arms, what must their jewelry be? An
answer is found in the museum. We again find jade set with emeralds
and rubies. From Trichinopoly are gold chains of the snake pattern so
finely wrought that the scales are almost invisible, and the chain
doubles like thread, or chains and bracelets of rose open-work, most
minute and beautiful. From Madras and Delhi comes granulated gold
made into ear-drops or set as bosses in open-work. About everything
there is a lightness as far removed as possible from Western ideas of
handsome solidity and valuable weight. In the museum a model stands for
the purpose of showing how the woman of India wears jewelry. She has
not only "rings on her fingers and bells on her toes," but in nose and
ears, on her hand, dropping over her bosom, round her arms and waist,
and loading her ankles, are stringed gems and hoops of gold.

Akin to the jewelry is the gold and silver plate. The cup, or Buddhist
relic-casket, already mentioned, is interesting as being one of the
oldest examples found in India, and its age, about two thousand years,
only tells how much India art-work in the precious metals has been
destroyed or lost. There are many excellent examples of the parcel-gilt
work of Cashmere, and one shrine-screen of silver, pierced and
repoussée, is exceptionally fine in design and treatment. There are
tinned brass vessels with incised decorations, sculptured vessels of
brass, brass incrusted with copper and copper incrusted with silver,
but which can be called the baser and which the richer metals when
all assume shapes of such wondrous beauty as the _lotas_ and _sarais_,
and are decorated with designs so pleasing and with a skill so perfect
with damascened work, incrustations or enamel? The metal excipient is
forgotten in the art. The enamelled huku-stand in the illustration
belongs to the best Mogul period of transparent enamelling, and is
painted in green and blue enamels. At Jaipur red, blue and green
enamels are laid upon pure gold, and the richness and brilliancy of the
result have raised the enamels of that place to the first rank among
those of all the East.

Here our round of inspection may close, and as the doors shut behind us
a remarkable fact presents itself: that in no branch of industrial art,
either in metal-work, weaving or carving, can the science of Europe
cope with the plodding industry of the East.




While the small party of soldiers were employed in attracting the
attention of the inhabitants to the meaningless parade of taking down
the offer of reward and replacing it by the announcement of discovery,
the larger portion of their company had already entered Uncle Zebedee's
house and seized upon Jerrem, their object being to avoid any defence
on the part of the neighbors, which Adam, with a view of preventing
further search being made in the house, had assured them was certain to
take place unless they could find a means of very speedily effecting
their purpose. Although little disposed to be influenced by any of
his suggestions, the force of this one was greatly strengthened by
the necessity of dividing themselves into two parties, one of which
must take Adam on, while the other returned to Polperro to seize the
prisoner. And this they managed with such promptitude that in less than
ten minutes they had entered the house and had dragged out Jerrem, who,
half stupefied, was pinioned and marched off before he was sufficiently
aroused to thoroughly comprehend or realize his situation.

The tattoo of the drums announced to the men on the quay that the
capture was effected, and the party, hurrying off by the Warren, had
joined their comrades, already half up Talland lane, before those who
had been spectators of one calamity could exchange their evil tidings
with those who had witnessed the other.

Yes, Jerrem was gone--led off to disgrace, maybe to death, through the
treachery of his shipmate, his comrade, his--all but in blood--brother.
What would come next? Ghastly fears crowded in upon all present.
Vengeance grew rank, hatred spread out on all sides: the earth thirsted
for his blood, and the air was thick with curses showered on his name.
Even Joan turned relentless and flung pity from her heart; while
old Zebedee, stung to the quick by the odium brought upon his name,
disowned Adam for his son and took God to witness that so long as life
remained every farthing he possessed should be spent in saving Jerrem.

At early dawn of the next day, Joan, at the instance of her uncle and
in company with several trusty friends, set off first for Liskeard, and
then, if need be, to get on to Plymouth or to Bodmin, at one of which
places Jerrem, they said, was certain to be tried. Bodmin jail and
Plymouth clink had both been familiar in days gone by to many who still
lived to tell their tales and give their experience, and schemes were
already abroad to put the larger boats on wheels, so that, if Bodmin
were selected, conveyances might be supplied by which the mass of the
people could be transported there and see fair play dealt out to their

But days went by without Joan coming back, and Eve, who was left behind
to look after Uncle Zebedee, had to sit and listen to the terrible
outpourings of wrath against his son to which the old man gave vent in
the presence of his neighbors, and see the more heartrending desolation
of spirit which bowed him to the ground when no strange eye was near to
witness his weight of woe.

So entirely had the chain of circumstances overpowered Eve that this
climax of disaster seemed to have sealed up the flow of her emotions,
and listening to and looking at the tears, exclamations, sighs and
groans with which the excitable, sympathetic Cornish folk expressed
their anguish and their indignation, she asked herself, "Had all
feeling left her? Did she no longer care what happened to herself
or anybody around her? Was it nothing to her that her life was, as
it were, at an end, her future blighted, her hopes dead, her lover
disgraced, reviled, disowned and denounced by his own father and his
own family?" Any way, she could find no tears to bewail her sad fate
in, no sighs to relieve her burdened heart, no groans to ease her
desolate spirit: all was chaos, over which two dark shadows moved--the
spectral forms of herself and Adam.

"Uncle, what do you think's become of him? where can he have gone
to?" Eve asked one night as, no longer afraid of his neighbors seeing
him, the old man tore off the armor under which in their presence he
concealed every softer feeling.

"To bottom o' sae, clane gone out o' the warld, I hope, where I wishes
I was too," groaned Zebedee. "Awh! to think e'er a boy o' mine should
ha' sarved us so!--that he us counted 'bove all other flesh and blood
should ha' bin the whiles carryin' 'bout the heart of a fausse Judas in
his body!"

"Perhaps he was mad," said Eve, dropping her voice in terror of the

"Lord send I could see un ravin'!" cried Zebedee. "Why," he added, his
voice breaking under the pictured joy, "I'd thraw mysel' 'pon un and
hug un to me close, though he tored out my heart 'pon the spot for 't.
Naw, lass, naw," he sighed, "he ain't mad: 'tis the devil has seazed
hold on un somehow: that's what's brought un to this."

"Didn't he say nothing that seems now as if he'd told you that night
what he meant to do?" urged Eve.

"Naw, nothin'."

"And you didn't say anything to him, did you?"

"Iss, there 'tis: that's what sticks by me and shaws me plain the
vengeance that was in un, 'cos I tawld un that us was tryin' to dale
double, so as to manage for Jerrem to stale away."

"You didn't tell him about the soldier?" faltered Eve. "No, you
couldn't, because you didn't know anything about it yourself, did you?"

"Iss, I did. Jerrem tawld--he allays tawld me everything Jerrem
did--and I ups and tells Adam."

An icy grip seized Eve by the heart. "Oh, uncle!" she groaned, "could
it be because of that--that he thought about me?"

"What damon's in the maid now?" cried the old man, starting to his feet
and standing before her with clenched hands and quivering limbs. "Do
'ee give heed to what 'tis you'm sayin' of? Doan't 'ee knaw that if I
thought that 'twas you was the cause of it I'd scat out yer brains on
the planchin' where you'm standing to?"

Eve shrank back in terror, while Zebedee, after a minute's pause,
his outburst ended, sank down into his former despondent attitude,
muttering, "There! there! let be! let be! Awh, I wander what 'tis a
keepin' o' Joan so? Things is all bottom side upmost when her's out o'

But two days more passed before Joan returned, bringing with her the
startling intelligence that, instead of Bodmin or Plymouth, Jerrem was
to be tried in London, to which place report said Adam had already
been removed. But, though every one thirsted for news, beyond the bare
facts Joan had little with which to satisfy them: she had failed in her
endeavor to see Jerrem, of whose present whereabouts even no one could
speak with certainty; she could learn no positive tidings of Adam,
neither had she been able to ascertain any trustworthy account of the
betrayal, only that it was in every one's mouth that Adam had done it,
and had meant to do it from the first moment he found that the shot
fired against his will would bring them all to trouble. Mr. Macey, the
lawyer at Fowey, who had always managed Uncle Zebedee's money-business,
had said 'twas a terrible job of it, and though he couldn't take it
himself he'd see 'twas carried through by somebody sharper at such work
than he was; and he'd sent Uncle Zebedee word that not a stone should
be left unturned or a guinea unspent while hope was left that Jerrem's
life might be saved; but he also sent a solemn warning to him and to
all the Lottery's crew to keep quiet and out of sight until 'twas
seen whether they meant to carry their vengeance further, or whether
Jerrem's life alone would serve to content them.

"Wa-al," sighed Zebedee, who had listened eagerly to the whole of
Joan's details and patiently to old Mr. Macey's friendly warning,
"they'm fair words and kindly spoken, and, so far as they goes, I'll
bide by 'em. But hark 'ee here, Joan: if the warst comes to warst, mind
this--though they strings me up with un and we swings together, I'll
stand yet wance more face to face with Jerrem afore he dies."

"And that you shall," said Joan; "and so will I too, for while in life
us cherished un, so while life lasts us 'll never desert un."

"And as for t' other wan," said the stricken old man, his wrinkled face
growing pinched and sharp, "may the wound that he's planted in my heart
rankle and fester in his own! May he live to know the want o' they he's
cast hisself off from, and die a stranger in a furrin land, and be
buried where none who knawed un here can point to the grave that holds

"Uncle!" cried Eve, thrusting her fingers into her ears to keep out
these terrible words from falling on them--"uncle!" But Joan's upraised
hand warned her to keep silent, and turning she saw that a sudden
change had fallen upon Zebedee: his features had relaxed, his stretched
eyelids were half closed over his glazed eyes, his head drooped low and
was sunk down upon his breast.

For some minutes the two girls stood anxiously gazing at him, until
Joan, terrified by the ashen pallor which had blanched his usually
ruddy cheeks, ventured to speak, and at length succeeded in so far
rousing him that he allowed himself to be persuaded to go to bed, and
the two girls were left alone.

"You're wanting to run up to your mother's, Joan, ain't you?" said Eve.
"I'll sit and watch Uncle Zebedee while you're gone."

"No, never mind for to-night," said Joan wearily.

"Then let me go," said Eve: "'twon't take me any time, and I want a
breath of fresh air;" and she rose from her seat as she spoke.

But Joan intercepted. "No, now sit down," she said hurriedly: "there
ain't no call for neither to go; 'sides which, 'tis too late. I don't
wan't 'ee to go wanderin' 'bout in the dark: you'm too much given to
goin' out by yourself. It won't do now: 'tain't safe, you knaw."

Eve stared: "Not safe, Joan? Why not?"

"Well, now, I'd rather you didn't. Sit down now, like a dear."

Eve sat down, but, her curiosity awakened by Joan's agitated, nervous
manner, she said, "Joan, what is it? I'm sure you've heard something.
Tell me, what makes you say we oughtn't to go out by ourselves, eh?"

Joan hesitated. "I wonder," she said, "whether I'd best tell 'ee or
not? It may be nothin' but a passel o' mazed talk, only I wouldn't have
a finger o' harm laid 'pon 'ee for warlds."

"Why, what is it, Joan?"

"Well, my dear, you see, I've see'd Jonathan. Through Adam's tellin'
he was tooked off too and lodged in Plymouth clink; but findin' they
couldn't make un spake a word o' sense, when they carr'd Adam away they
left Jonathan bide; and there he is, and there I hopes he'll stay."

"You do? What for?" asked Eve, amazed.

"Why, 'cos o' you, Eve. Iss," she said, answering her look of surprise,
"he's for all the world like anybody ravin' mad agen you."

"Against me? But why against me?"

"He will have that you'm the cause of it all," said Joan; "and 't
seems now he let out to Adam 'bout the letter that Jerrem writ and he
broffed, and then he drove un further mad by a passel o' lies he's
somehow got tagged on t' it--that you'd ha' told the sergeant, and
through that he dropped a bit o' paper, tellin' of it all, into the
rendevoos winder; for, seemin', that was how they got scent o' the
Lottery's landin'."

"And Adam believed him?" gasped Eve.

"He must have," sobbed Joan; "and then I reckon somethin' he see'd or
heerd that night finished un."

"Oh, Joan!" cried Eve, flinging herself down and burying her head on
Joan's lap.

"Iss: don't it seem as if us all must have some hand in tightenin' the
rope that's round that poor sawl's neck?"

"And Adam could believe that I would betray them--would betray him?"
and, clasping her hands, Eve looked up as if making an appeal to some
unseen presence--"him," she said, "for whom I would have given my
life--for whom," she cried, breaking down, "oh, Joan, I would give my
life now!"

"Iss, I know you would," said Joan, hugging her close to her. "Why,
haven't I called un everything bad before 'ee, o' purpose 'cos I should
see 'ee flare up agen me for doin' it? and haven't I blessed 'ee in my
heart for stickin' to un through thick and thin? Awh, Eve, my dear,
don't 'ee judge me hard for keeping all to Jerrem's side. 'Tain't only
love for Jerrem makes me do it, but that Adam sha'n't never be fouled
by havin' the stain o' blood restin' 'pon un. If 'twas only for that
I'd spend my last breath to save Jerrem from hangin'."

"They think they'll try to hang him?" said Eve in a faltering voice.

"Iss, for certain they'll try; and, though I didn't say so to uncle,
all Mr. Macey fears is that wan life won't content 'em, neither."

"Could Adam have known that?" whispered Eve.

"He knawed 'twas death to whoever was took, and a free pardon to
whoever told on 'em, or else why didn't he take and knock him on the
head hisself? Jonathan says," she added after a minute's pause, "that
when he'd told un 'bout you he sprung on un like a tiger and shook un
like a rat; and after, when it comed to 'bout the letter, he roared out
like a bull belvin', and then fell flat down 'pon his face like one
struck for death."

"Oh, why, why did Jerrem send that letter?" moaned Eve, wringing her
hands in desperation.

"Iss, why indeed?" said Joan. "Though that could have had nothin' to
do with the findin's out, that I can see; for, if 'twas the last word
I spoked, I could take an oath to never havin' quitted a word 'bout it
to a single livin' sawl; and as to you meetin' the sergeant, why, you
never stirred from this, did 'ee?--Let's see: what did us do that day?"
she added, trying to recall the past events; while Eve, sensible of
having concealed her meeting with Reuben May, averted her face so that
Joan might not perceive its terrible pallor.

Over and over again had Eve endeavored to screw up her courage to
tell Joan of this meeting, since which one misfortune after another
had crowded so thickly upon them as to make each endeavor seem
inopportune. For days after the interview she had every now and again
been seized with terror lest Reuben should make his appearance, and
great was her relief when, as time went on, she began to be released
from this anxiety. But no suspicion that he could in any way have
been connected with the betrayal had ever entered her mind until now,
when, as Joan spoke of her being the supposed betrayer, a sudden dart
of terror seemed to strike her. Was it possible? Could she have said
anything that Reuben had laid hold of against them? For an instant Eve
wrestled with the doubt and tried to crush it, but so vividly did it
rise up before her that at any cost she felt it must be set at rest,
and seizing Joan's hand she blurted out, "Joan, there's one thing
I've never told you of--that the day we expected them all back, after
Jerrem's letter had come, I went out for a bit by Talland way, and
there, just down before you come to the Warren stile, I met--"

"Not he! No, doan't 'ee tell me you see'd the sergeant!" cried Joan,
forcing her hands up to Eve's mouth as if to keep back the words.

"The sergeant? no!" said Eve indignantly; "but the young man I told you
of from London--Reuben May."

"Reuben May, Eve? Why, however did he come down 'long this ways? What
broffed un here, eh?"

"He was coming to see me," said Eve. "He had come in Capen Triggs's
vessel because of something he'd heard about us, and the minute he
saw me he began about uncle and Adam, calling them both thieves and
robbers, and I can't tell what."

"But that wouldn't make 'ee tell un nothin' 'bout their landin'?" said

"No: I feel sure I never mentioned that. I told him they were expected
home, because I feared he'd want to come that night and see you all;
but then we fell to quarrelling again, and parted in such anger that I
said I hoped never to see his face again."

"But whatever made 'ee keep it to yourself and never spake of it till
now?" said Joan, turning her eyes upon Eve with a look of anxious

"I never meant to keep it from you, Joan," said Eve earnestly; "and
only that your mother and Mrs. Climo and the rest were here, I should
have told you the minute I got back: then, when they were gone, I
said, 'I'll tell her as soon as we come down from the cliff;' but what
happened there put everything else out of my head for that night,
and since then, though I've had it on my lips to say twenty times,
something has always come up to hinder me from speaking."

"I'd a made sure you'd never cast eyes on any man outside the place,"
said Joan, perplexed by this new opening-out of difficulties.

"I wish now, more than ever, that it had never happened," sighed Eve.
"Still, Joan, the more I think of it the more certain I feel that
Reuben May had no hand in it, unless it could be that anybody might
have watched us together. That's not impossible, although I never met a
single soul, coming or going."

Joan made no comment: for a minute she seemed to struggle and debate
with her thoughts; then, suddenly looking up, she said, "Eve, you'll
have to go back home to wance: it 'ull never do to have 'ee stayin'
here now."

"But why, Joan? Has what I have told you made you think ill of me?
Don't you believe that I am speaking the truth when I say that what
kept me silent were the bitter words that Reuben May spoke? I meant to
tell you of it, because I had spoken of him to you before, but I could
never have told Adam that one I had counted as my greatest friend had
called him a thief over whose head the gallows was dangling;" and at
the remembrance of how near those words seemed now to the truth Eve
burst into a passion of tears.

"Now, don't 'ee go for to cry like that," exclaimed Joan, dashing
away the drops which were blinding her own eyes. "Whatever 'tis, I
loves 'ee too well to think harm of 'ee for it; and whether 'twas he
or some other man, t' mischief's done now and can't be set straight
agen. But, Eve, us mustn't let more harm come to us if we can hinder
it; and I tawld 'ee that I didn't like the angry words and the manin'
looks o' Jonathan, and he gived two or three twists o' hisself while he
was spakin' that made me turn as cold as death, and 't seemed as if I
couldn't draw my eyes away from the glarin' roll he was lookin' about
un with."

"Oh, I'm not afraid of Jonathan," said Eve, trying to brave down
the tremor of nervous fear which was creeping through her--"a poor
half-witted creature, who says one thing this minute and forgets all
about it the next."

"Awh, my dear, don't 'ee sneer at Jonathan," said Joan reprovingly:
"he's a bitter foe, I'll warn 'ee. And when," she added, dropping her
voice to a whisper, "he talks of maidens who loves to stand gazin' 'pon
the sea growin' dizzy and fallin' in, and o' folks bein' 'ticed fro'
their homes and never comin' back 'longs agen, 'tis time to steer clear
of un, Eve, for there's devilry in his words and mischief broodin' in
his mind."

"Why, Joan," gasped Eve, "surely he wouldn't--you don't think he'd
murder me?" and as the words came trembling out her very lips turned
white with horror.

"I wouldn't like to lave 'ee in his way," faltered Joan.

"But he'd be afraid, wouldn't he?"

"Wa-al, if so be he could get free to tell his story there's no knawin'
what might come of it. I had to dale double with un as it was, and
manage so that neither wan but me got in to see un; and 'fore he gets
set free altogether, Eve, you must put miles atween you and they who,
when they'd listened to his story, would awnly be too quick to shut
their eyes to what they wasn't axed to take part in."

"Of course, in that case," said Eve, "'tis best I should go back by
myself again to London."

And as the words came slowly dragging forth, the narrow street, the
obscured sky, the stifling air weighed down upon her, and crushed her
with a sense of gloom unknown before when her thirst for freedom was
but a want unsatisfied. Her whole being revolted against the cruel
exchange: her nature cried out in protest, but in vain.

The more they discussed the point the more convinced they both became
that there was no other possible alternative; and the money for her
journey being supplied by Uncle Zebedee, under pretence of accompanying
Jochabed Giles in one of her stolen visits to Plymouth Eve set off late
one afternoon, intending to rest by the way, and get on the next day to
Plymouth, whence she would take coach to London.

There was to be no leavetaking, for no one must know that she was going
away. So, with only a nod of good-bye to Uncle Zebedee and a moment's
desperate clinging to Joan, Eve left the house, and in silent sadness
followed Jochabed down the street, past the Warren, and away along
by the cliff-path until they came to the jutting point which, once
past, shuts out all view of Polperro from beyond. Here Eve paused, and
motioning Jochabed to go on she turned and bade her eyes gaze round
upon the scene and look their last farewell.

The sun, which all day long had shone hot and fierce, had run its
course and sunk to rest, leaving its trail of glory to tip the hills
above and be reflected down in crimson glow upon the sea below. The
mist of heat which all day long had hung over the land, though rolled
away from there, still floated in filmy clouds before the harbor's
mouth, veiling the little haven and casting broad shadows on the rugged
cliffs, up whose steep sides the white-faced houses clung, higher and
higher still, till they were lost amid the tangle of the ridge which
crowns the valley's sides.

Like an echo awakened by some tuneful strain which jars on the ear and
smites the heart because the voice which gave it melody is still and
hushed for ever, the sunset calm of that peaceful scene jarred on the
misery of her who stood stricken and desolate. Involuntarily she shut
her eyes, that through them at least her heart should be no longer
pierced; and when she opened them again a mist of gathering tears
obscured her view and blotted out the prospect from her sight. Then,
slowly turning, Eve went her way, knowing that while this life should
last the face of that fair portion of earth would never meet her eyes


Reuben May had been but a short time back in London when one evening,
as he was closing the shutters of his small shop, a boy presented
himself, saying he was the landlady's nephew at Knight's Passage, and
had been sent by her to ask Mr. May for some of the things he was
taking care of for Eve Pascal.

"Why, what does she want them for?" asked Reuben curtly.

"She wants them for Eve Pascal herself," said the boy. "Eve Pascal has
come back again: she came back this morning, only she hadn't got any
one to send till now."

"All right," said Reuben, returning to his shutter-closing and then
proceeding to fasten the door: "I'll go round and speak to her myself."

"Then you won't want me?" said the boy, not sorry to be released by his
stern-looking companion.

"No: you can go your own way," replied Reuben, already several paces in
advance, and walking with such rapid strides that a few minutes brought
him to the house which had been the scene of all the romance his life
had ever known.

"Oh, Mr. May!" but, paying no heed to the landlady's voice and without
a pause, Reuben ran up the different flights of stairs, knocked at the
door, opened it, and found himself at once in the presence of Eve:


And then silence, each looking at the other, wondering what could
have wrought such a change; for the bodily fatigue and mental anxiety
undergone by Reuben had told as heavily on his appearance as the sorrow
Eve had endured had told on hers, although the absence of original
comeliness made the alteration in him less generally noticeable.

"Have you been ill, Eve?" and as he put the question a wild thought
sprang up that perhaps her suffering had been on his account, and,
stirred by this prompting, Reuben took her hand in his and looked with
tender anxiety into her face.

"No," she said, quietly withdrawing her hand, "I have not been ill.
Have you? You look very ill."

"Oh, that's on account of my having walked most of the way back here
from Plymouth: it's a stiffish tramp, you know, and took the little
flesh I had off my bones."

Eve paused for an instant, as if trying to repress the over-haste of
her question: then she said, while her face was half turned away, "Did
you go straight on to Plymouth after I saw you?"

"I got to Plymouth before daylight the next morning. I was forced to
rest a bit here and there on the way, as I'd come the same ground
once before that day; but the night was fine; so, as I didn't care
about stopping anywheres, I stumped on without waiting to see Triggs
even--made a message do for him--and started off on my journey."

"Then you never went near Looe at all?" Eve exclaimed with eagerness.

"Ah!" replied Reuben, evading a direct reply by a little laugh, under
which he heralded his answer, "you may be sure I didn't stop to inquire
the names of all the places I passed through: I was in too hot haste to
turn my back on them for anything of that sort."

"Oh, thank God!" said Eve; and at the words her whole mind and body
seemed to relax from the strain imposed on them by the suspicion that
in some indistinct way on her had rested the blame of the betrayal.

"'Thank God'?" repeated Reuben sharply. "Thank God for what?"

"For not making me the betrayer of those who put their trust in me."

Reuben's face turned crimson, but so engrossed was Eve by her own
satisfaction that his sudden confusion was lost upon her, and she
continued: "I may as well tell you, Reuben, that a terrible trouble
has fallen upon me and mine since I parted with you. That very night
some one played us false and betrayed the Lottery into the hands of the

"I can't see what else was to be expected," said Reuben stolidly: "when
men run their necks into a noose they may be pretty sure of some day
finding the knot drawn tight."

"I was so afraid that you might have laid hold on anything I said to
you, and had been led in any way to tell it against them," sighed Eve,
paying no heed to the taunt with which Reuben had hoped to sting her.

"And supposing I had," he said, "oughtn't you to thank me for doing it?
Don't tell me, Eve"--and he threw into his tone a mixture of contempt
and bitterness--"that you've come to take it as a trial that those you
talk of belonging to are forced into taking to honest ways."

"Those I belong to have been hunted down like dogs," she cried. "A
price has been set upon their lives, and one of them has been dragged
away up here that they may try and hang him if they can."

"What?" exclaimed Reuben, starting to his feet--"hang him? Who are they
going to hang? What can they hang him for? Is it your cousin, Adam
Pascal, you're talking of?"

"No: I wish it was," said Eve, her face quivering with the emotion the
relation of these details stirred within her; "but, though 'twas in
fair fight, 'twas Jerrem shot the man."

"Shot what man?" gasped Reuben.

"The revenue-man. The Lottery was lying still, waiting for the tide to
come up, when the boats crept up behind them in the dark; and if it
hadn't been for Adam not one among their crew would have lived to tell
the tale, but by his word he kept his own men quiet--all but Jerrem,
who fired his gun, and down the revenue-man fell, dead."

Reuben stifled the exclamation which rose to his lips, and Eve, to
whose days of pent-up misery the repetition of these woes seemed to
bring relief, continued: "At first all blamed Adam and praised Jerrem,
but almost at once the soldiers came, and they'd only barely time to
hide away from them. Adam went to the mill, and was there a week and
more; and then some one told him that 'twas I was the cause of their
being betrayed; and it drove him so mad with jealousy and rage that he
told of the place where Jerrem was hid; and the next day the soldiers
came again, dragged Jerrem out and carried him away. And now, though
uncle spends every guinea he has got, 'tis almost sure that through
Adam's word Jerrem will be hanged; for they say they've brought them
both to London, and that they're lodged in Newgate jail."

Up to this time Reuben's eyes seemed riveted upon Eve's face, but as
she paused he bent his head and sunk it down upon the table near--a
movement that at any former time would naturally have awakened some
surprise, but now Eve had grown so familiar with the aspect of sorrow
that she regarded all visible emotion as an outburst of the certain
sympathy to be expected from her hearers. "Now you know why it is,
Reuben," she continued, "that I feel so glad that you had no hand in
anything of this; for you must overlook the anger that I showed at
that time. I've been sorry for it often since, and feared you'd count
me over-bold for talking as I did. Not that I'm changed, Reuben, nor
think one bit the less of Adam for what's happened. No; and though all
the world should turn their backs on him, I'd stand by his side; and
to prove it I must find him out and tell him that, in spite of all
they've told him, in heart and tongue I've never been untrue to him."
And, filled with the desire of seeing the man she loved, Eve clasped
her hands and sat trying to revolve her plans, while Reuben commenced
pacing the little room with a troubled air.

Suddenly bringing himself to a stand before Eve, he said, "Eve, be
sure your sin will find you out."

"No, Reuben--no;" and she put up her hand as if to avert the
continuance of any homily: "'tis of no good talking like that. Sorrow
has sealed up my heart against taking condemnation or comfort from
anything of that sort."

"It isn't of you I'm thinking," he exclaimed. "Oh," he cried, giving
vent to his pent-up feelings, "down into what a pitfall a minute's evil
passion may fling a man! To think that I, while I was crying vengeance
against others, was drawing down the wrath of God upon my own head,
stamping myself with the brand of Cain, and doing the devil's work by
sending men to death with all their sins still heavy on their souls!"

"Reuben, what is it you mean?" and seizing hold of him with both her
hands, Eve gazed into his face.

"That the thought you had was true," he said, "and that 'twas me who
dropped the paper in that told them where the Lottery would be found;"
and a tremor ran through Reuben's frame: his pulses for a moment
quickened, and then grew faint and seemed to die away; while Eve
uttered neither word nor sound: her eyes drooped, her hold relaxed,
and tottering she sank back into the seat behind her, and there sat
motionless and still as one carved out of stone.

The abandonment of hope, the unutterable despair of face and form,
so unlike anything which Reuben had ever seen in Eve, touched him as
no reproaches could have done. That depth of misery which words can
neither describe nor express pierced his inmost soul and added to the
stings with which conscience was already smiting him. Not for the act
of betrayal, for had there been no Eve to prompt him Reuben would have
looked upon it as an act of justice that he should aid the law against
men who set order and government at defiance, and though each man on
board had met his death Reuben would have held his conscience free of
any tittle of reproach; but, equitable and unyielding to himself as
well as to others, he full well knew that when he wrote the words which
sealed the Lottery's fate justice was clean gone out of his mind. He
neither knew nor cared what might become of the men whose safety he
betrayed: the whole rancor of his hate was turned against his rival;
and the paper he flung into the rendezvous window was as much a blow
aimed at Adam as if he had dealt him a thrust and had stabbed him in
the dark.

"Eve," he said, "words are but poor things at a time like this, and if
I spoke from now till never I couldn't make you see by them the misery
I feel; but if you'll trust me this far, I swear by Him who sees us
both and knows our hearts that no stone shall be unturned, no thing
undone. I'll walk London over, and neither rest day nor night till I
find out Adam Pascal and his comrade and tell them the whole truth.
And when I say this," he added, his face working with emotion, "don't
fancy 'tis because of love of you, Eve: I know that, come what may, we
never can be nothing more than friends now; but oh--" and he held out
his hands toward her--"let's at least be that, Eve: let me help you to
set yourself clear with the man who, be he what he may, it seems you've
given all your heart to; and you--you help me to rid myself of the
thought that I've led into sin and hurried on to death fellow-creatures
whose godless lives I'd now give my own to save. Together, if we set
our minds to work, there's no knowing what we mayn't do yet. Warrants
have been quashed and pardons given when men have reached the very
gallows' foot; and as for getting in, why Mr. Osborne knows Newgate
prison, every inch, from going there with old Silas Told when he was
living, and he'll do anything for me; so there'll be no fear about
that. And you know _me_, Eve: you know how when I'm set upon a thing I
strain my utmost nerve to get it done;" and, pausing, he stood watching
with mingled hope and fear the effect of his words--first, the flush
of spreading color, then the quivering mouth and eyes, and finally the
rush of tears which lifted up and cleared away that stone-like gloom.

A ray of hope seemed once more near, and catching at the feeblest
chance of being brought again face to face with Adam, Eve, unable to
speak, stretched out her hand, which Reuben took, grasped it almost
to pain, then let it go, and with it every hope of love that lingered
still for Eve.

The rest of the time was spent in explanations of the various incidents
relating to the all-engrossing event, the details which bore upon it,
the circumstances which surrounded it, until, from following out all
these into their different channels, Reuben began to have a clearer
conception of the men, their characters, their individual virtues and
collective failings, growing interested in them almost against his
will. The hour was late before he recollected that until he reached his
home he could hardly settle his plans so as to secure an entrance into
the prison on the following day. Bidding Eve good-night, he left the
house and walked away, only stopping at the turn of the street to step
into the road and cast his wistful gaze up to the window of the room
which to him now was as the tomb of his dead love.

An ordinary workingman standing in an obscure street is not a figure
to arouse much interest, and Reuben's stolid face gave little index to
the varied emotions which surged within his troubled heart. He was able
to return the gruff "Good-night!" the watchman gave, and the old man,
passing on, went wondering as to the cause of such anxious survey on
Reuben's part. For as he stood his thoughts ran here and there, and by
the magic of their power showed to his view the long-gone joys of other
days. He watched the struggling birth of love, scorched himself in its
flame, and felt by turns the tortures and delights its presence gives
to those who live on hope alone: then sadly saw it fade from out his
sight, sicken and faint almost to death, and yet it did not die until
by that one action he had robbed it of life and killed it evermore.
Yes, love was dead, and love was Eve; and for Reuben May the Eve he had
loved so fondly lived no longer.


During the time which had elapsed since the night on which Eve Pascal
and Reuben May renewed their bond of friendship many an anxious
incident had occurred to test its value and cement its strength.

Jerrem and Adam were familiar names to Reuben now, and the men who
bore them were often before his eyes and constantly in his thoughts.
Prepared as Reuben had been for undergoing much awkwardness in
delivering himself of the tale he had to tell, he found he had greatly
underrated the pain and humiliation he actually felt when, through the
interest of his friend, he found himself within the walls of Newgate
and in the presence of Adam. Reuben was no coward, yet it needed all
the strength of his strictly-disciplined mind to open up and lay bare
before a rival's eyes those wounds which love had made and time had
had no space to heal. He shrank from placing in front of Adam the
picture of himself and Eve as they had stood in the days when, Adam all
unknown, the balance of a happy future seemed trembling still within
the hand of Fate; and he paused from time to time as he spoke, hoping
some word or sign would make his task more easy; but Adam never spoke
or turned aside his eyes, and under that fixed gaze Reuben was forced
to tell his tale out to the end, constraining his pride to give out
word for word what Eve had said in Adam's praise, and searing the green
memory of his love by making his lips repeat those vows which she had
told him bound her to another.

At length the task was ended, the jealous rage, the mad revenge, was
all confessed; and satisfied that, whatever guilt it might please Adam
to lay to his charge, he had at least shown that Eve was free from any
shadow of stain, Reuben paused, and the two so strangely linked stood
looking at each other with envy, jealousy, distrust clouding their
minds, while a chord of sympathy drew them together as they recognized
a similitude in their actions which made each self-abasement uttered
find an echo in its listener's breast. Proud, stern, unyielding to
emotion as both these men had lived, it was not in them to take comfort
in the shifts and excuses weaker natures find: the hearts that had
refused pity for their neighbors would not entreat it because they
themselves now stood in need. As they had judged their fellows so they
arraigned themselves, and thus unwittingly rendered the first atonement
man is called upon to make.

The sight of Adam's strong, powerful form shaken and bowed down by
the remorse he strove in vain to control moved Reuben strangely. The
haggard pallor of his striking face, the sunken eyes, the untasted
food, the unslept-in bed,--each told its tale of misery and woe, and
opened out to Reuben a depth of despair his own experience hitherto had
furnished him with no gauge to measure. What if with no further warning
he fetched up Eve to Adam's aid? The thought would bear no hesitation:
a thousand jealous "Noes" battled with the suggestion, but Reuben's
better self resolved to have its way, and, seizing the opportunity of
Adam's head being bent down in his arms, Reuben went swiftly out and
along down to the keeper's room, where Eve had been left impatiently
awaiting his return.

Although the grating of the hinge roused Adam, he neither stirred nor
moved until, satisfied by the unbroken silence that Reuben had left him
to himself, he ventured to raise his head. Where could he go? where
hide himself from human gaze? And as the thought of all his shame came
crowding to his mind he started up and wildly stared around, and then
around again, seeing each time the walls, which looked so near, draw
nearer still. No hope! no hope! Here he must live until the hour when
those who brought him here would drag him forth to swear away his
comrade's life. O God! how helpless he felt! and as he let himself drop
down each limb gave way and nerveless fell, as if Dejection claimed him
for her own. The time had been when Adam's mind was racked by thoughts
of what lay in the hearts of those he had left behind: their pictured
hatred and contempt stung him to madness; the words they would say,
the curses they were uttering, seemed ever ringing in his ears. But
Reuben's tale had for the time swept this away and filled its place
with dark remorse for what he had done to Jerrem. True, Reuben had
shown that Jerrem's hand had wrought his own and their destruction,
but what of that? Adam through him had wreaked his vengeance on them
all--had, Judas-like, delivered them to death: henceforth, branded and
disgraced, he must be an outcast or a wanderer. As this fallen spectre
of himself rose up and flitted in his sight a cry of wild despair burst
forth, wrenched from the depths of his proud heart--a cry which some
one near sent echoing back; and as it came his hands were caught, and
Pity seemed to stretch her arms and fold him to her breast.

Was it a nightmare he was waking from--some hideous dream in which our
bodies slumber while our fancies live a lifetime? Would this vision
of Eve (for Eve it was who knelt close by his side, her arms around
his neck) melt away and fade as many a one of her had done before? She
calls him love--her love, the husband of her heart. What! he, this
guilty outcast--can he be this to any one, and most of all to Eve?

A finger's touch seemed laid upon the veil which hitherto had shut out
hope from Adam's view, and as it shrivelled up and rolled away the
light revealed that Mercy still sat throned on high, and bowing down
his head on Eve's neck he let his stricken soul take comfort in the

       *       *       *       *       *

But while Adam was thus cast down under suffering, sorrow had taken but
a slight hold on Jerrem, who, after the first shock produced by the
horrors of a place then branded as "the darkest seat of woe this side
of hell," gradually regained his old elasticity, and was soon ready to
treat, laugh and drink with all who came near him. His merry jokes, his
quaint sea-songs, the free handling he gave to his plentiful supply of
money,--all served to ensure his popularity, so that, instead of the
man sunk under misery and despair whom Reuben, after leaving Adam, had
girded himself up to encounter, he came upon Jerrem rollicking and
gay, a prime favorite with all the authorities, and a choice spirit
amid the crew of tried and untried prisoners who in those days crowded
together in the foul wards of Newgate.

Fresh from the sight of Adam's dark remorse, filled with compunction
at the thought of all the ills their joint passions had hurled on
Jerrem's head, Reuben had invested Jerrem with a sense of wrong, to
make reparation for which he had come prepared to offer whatever
sacrifice he should demand. To find the man for whom all this feeling
had been conjured up reckless and unconcerned, casting oaths against
his ill-luck one moment and cutting jokes at his possible fate the
next, jarred upon Reuben terribly, and made him at once decide that it
would be worse than useless to urge upon him any necessity for taking
thought for his soul when he was so utterly reckless as to what would
become of his body. The story Reuben had to tell of himself and Eve,
the betrayal, and the suspicions it had aroused against Eve in Adam,
merely affected Jerrem as a matter for surprise and curiosity. He
seemed pleased to hear that Eve was close at hand, but still expressed
no wish to see her. He talked about Adam, and with a painful absence of
all malice told Reuben to say to him that he'd best lay it thick on his
back, so that the judge and jury would let the other chaps go free. The
circumstance of being brought to London to be tried seemed to afford
him immense satisfaction--a thing, he said, that hadn't happened for
sixty years and more, since old ---- swung for it; and then he fell
to wondering how soon that might be his fate, and if so how many from
Polperro would make the stretch to come so far. He'd promise them it
shouldn't be for nothing: he'd show the Cornishmen that he could cut
his capers game. Only one subject seemed able to sober or subdue his
reckless spirit, and this was any mention of Joan or Uncle Zebedee: to
them the poor soul seemed to cling with all the love his nature could
command. And when Reuben, instructed by Eve, told him how stricken
down the old man lay, and farther on promised to write for him all
the messages he wished to send to Joan, a heart of wax seemed given
to his keeping, in which it now must be his care to mould the little
good there yet was time to teach. And so it happened that in all his
future visits--and every hour that Reuben had to spare was given up
to Jerrem--Joan was the theme that threaded all their discourse, and
by her power Jerrem's soft heart and softer nature became to Reuben
as an open page, wherein he read of actions in which good and bad
were so mixed up and jumbled that in the very midst of his reproof
and condemnation Reuben was often forced to stand abashed before some
act of generous pity which found no echo in his former life. And out
of this humility, which grew in strength, there sprang forth greater
merits than from all the weary efforts he made at working out his own
atonement; for Reuben, like Adam, had been over-satisfied about his
own rectitude, and took pride in the knowledge that if ever he had
committed a wrong he had acknowledged it freely and expiated it to
the uttermost farthing; while Jerrem, for the first time in his life
brought to see guilt in what he had counted pleasure, scarce dared to
listen to a hope of mercy for himself, but rather craved Reuben to beg
it for the many who had been thoughtless sharers in his folly. His
ruling desire was to see Joan once more, and no sooner was he told that
the admiralty session had begun and that his day of trial, although not
fixed, was near at hand, than he begged Reuben to write and ask Joan to
delay her promised visit no longer; and this Reuben did, adding on his
own account that, from what the lawyer said, it would be best she came
at once by the coach which would reach London on the following Thursday
week, on which day Reuben would be waiting to receive her.

Now, at the onset of this disaster had such a letter reached Polperro
not a man in the place but, short of knowing it would cost his life,
would have risked all else to go to London, and if Jerrem was to die
give him courage by mustering round their comrade at the last. But
the downpour of disaster had cowed these daring spirits, and the men
who had not known what fear meant so long as success was secure now
trembled and gave way under the superstitious certainty that Ill-luck
was following them and Misfortune had marked them for her own. Their
energies paralyzed, they succumbed to what they looked upon as Fate,
and in most cases were seized without a struggle and led off to the
nearest prisons without an effort on their own part toward resistance.

The money over which, from the small scope for spending it, they had
seemed so lavish and reckless, when needed for lawyers and counsel and
bribes went but a small way; and though they made a common purse of all
their hoards, not a day passed without some house being stripped of the
substance which adorned it, so that money might be got for the husband,
the son, the brothers who had brought these treasures home. The women,
on their knees, pressed on the farmers' wives their chintzes, their
lace, their gaudy stock of jewelry, and when this market failed toiled
along to Liskeard, Plymouth and Launceston, carrying their china,
silver plate and bowls in the hope of finding somebody to buy them.

With a revenue cutter--often two--always in sight, landing parties
of king's men, who, recalling ugly thoughts of the hated press-gang,
roamed hither and thither, ready to seize any one who happened to
show his face; with half the husbands, sons and brothers in Plymouth
clink or Bodmin jail, and the rest skulking in farm-houses or lying
hidden in the secret places; with plenty vanishing and poverty drawing
nigh,--the past circumstances which had led to this desolation were
swallowed up in the present misery it had entailed upon them; and
though every one now knew the whole story as it stood--how that through
Jerrem writing to Eve she had had it in her power to tell Reuben May,
her former lover, who, led on by jealousy, had betrayed them to the
revenue-men--so familiar had Reuben's good services to Jerrem become
known that it was taken as only one more of his many friendly actions
that he should write to Joan, urging her to come to London without
delay, and promising to meet her and see that she was taken care of.
If any among them thought that Joan would go probably to Eve's home,
they made no mention of it, for Eve's name was by a tacit understanding
banished from their mouths, and the memory of her lay as a seal to that
dark sepulchre wherein, with bitter scorn and hate, Adam lay buried.

There was no question now of Uncle Zebedee going, for the confinement,
the excitement and the degradation had been too much for the old man,
whose free and happy life had never known trouble or restraint, and
his mind had gradually weakened under the burden imposed upon it; so
that now, except when some unexpected incident roused the flickering
flame of memory, the past few months were blotted from his mind, and
in company with Jonathan--who, broken down by ill-usage and turned
out of prison to die, had managed to crawl back to the friends he knew
he should find shelter with--he roamed about harmless and contented,
always watching for the Lottery's return, and promising, when she did
come back, that he would give them all a fling such as Polperro had not
seen for many a day.

It was an easy matter to cheat him now, and when, her journey all
arranged, Joan stepped into the boat which was to take her round to
Plymouth and left old Zebedee standing on the shore, raising his thin
cracked voice to fetch her ear with cheery messages for Jerrem and
for Adam, whom she was going to meet, her cup of bitterness seemed to

  _The Author of "Dorothy Fox."_



We are but beginning to understand what this America of ours is to
do for the Old World. If we consider it under the figure of a vast
steamship journeying to the relief of the mother nations, surely the
beef and the flour, the cotton and the corn, even the inventions, with
which it is freighted, form the least portion of its immeasurable
cargo of supplies. Now, imagining our republic to be such a vessel,
if Alaska be the stern and Florida the prow turned toward the other
hemisphere for the peaceful conquest thereof, then must New York on
the left hand and Texas upon the right be, in the days to come, the
great paddle-wheels which shall drive it onward--New York not more so
in a commercial than Texas in an agricultural sense. But it is with
Texas only that we have here to do, and this in order to detail certain
things hitherto unpublished which may not be without their use to the
Humes and Motleys, the Froudes and Macaulays, of our nation in the
wonderful future.

It is well to bear in mind from the outset that Texas is by far the
largest of the States. To get even an idea of this, place within its
boundaries New England, New York, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Ohio
and Pennsylvania: even then you must pack into the crevices between
these two or three granite boulders each of the size of Massachusetts
to make a solid territory as large as Texas. As to that, however,
Alaska is vast, and so is Sahara. If you set out upon a journey south
and south-westward, beginning at the Potomac, and visit every Southern
State in its order upon the map, you will find--and that almost
immediately upon your arrival in Texas--that you have reached that
State of them all which surpasses the others as much in prosperity as
it does in dimensions. Near as Texas is to the equator, the oxygen of
its abnormal growth is perceived by the newcomer in almost his first
breath. There is a combination of causes for this. The Puritan who
landed on Plymouth Rock gave character to, and transmitted himself
down, the after ages of New England history; and the same is true
of the influence of the Connecticut Austin who in 1820 began the
settlement of Texas. The lapse of two centuries may have given a more
earthward direction to the old energy, but the energy itself is there;
and, somehow, the character and history of this larger New England of
the West have been along the same line. Everything has helped forward
the prosperity of the State. General health, moderate taxation,
fertility of soil, astonishing diversity of product, cheap and rapid
construction of railroads along lines both of latitude and longitude,
immeasurable reserves of alternate sections of land held sacred for
education,--these are some of the causes which are attracting an
immigration of about a hundred thousand a year to a realm so vast that
the two millions already there seem but pioneers of the coming hosts.

But that which strikes the stranger most is the seemingly small
proportion of negroes to whites in comparison with other Southern
States; and this is becoming more marked every year. In one thing the
population seems to be unanimous, and that is that Texas shall remain,
vast as it is, one undivided State, a recent legislature having set
apart three millions of acres toward the construction of a new capitol
at Austin which shall be worthy of that one of the United States which
is also, and in itself, an empire so much larger than Germany that
to bring the balance to a level you must cast into the scale with it
Jamaica, Holland, Denmark, Belgium and Greece. There is the momentum
as of its enormous bulk in the prosperity of Texas; and not a man of
us, however wide awake he is, but is a Rip Van Winkle as to what it is
coming to be.

But all this is said in order to something else. Heaven knows that the
history of Texas was romantic enough during the era of the mysterious
Aztec, then of the Frenchman, the Spaniard, the Mexican, and after that
of the original and unadulterated Texan of the battles of '36, and yet
there is a page, unprinted hitherto, of its annals, in connection with
the Confederacy, which is, in some senses, the most interesting of
all. To appreciate it one must remember that, unlike any other State,
Texas was once a republic which had won its independence with its own
sword. Of its own free will it deliberately abdicated its nationality
as such to become one of the United States. When the fever of Secession
set in, of all the Southern States it was, on account both of its size
and strategic location, the most important. An anecdote in regard to
Mr. Lincoln may illustrate this. One of the early settlers of Texas
was a gentleman whom I will designate as Mr. S----. There is hardly a
citizen of the State but will know who is meant, so long and thoroughly
has he been recognized over its broad domain for his indomitable
energy, sagacity and magnificent success, as well as for an integrity
and high sense of honor unimpeached by any. Except as he was compelled
by the very qualities of his clear-headed character to be a Union man
during the rebellion, Mr. S---- has never meddled in politics, and no
man stands higher to-day in the estimation of the best men in Texas
than he. As a Union man he was obliged to absent himself from the
State during the war, and was in Washington in 1864. As soon as Mr.
Lincoln knew of his arrival he sent for him, and held three different
interviews with him in regard to Texas. During these conversations
the President dwelt at length and with the utmost energy upon the
necessity, in a military sense, of Texas to the Federal cause. "If we
held Texas," he said, "we should not only outflank the Confederacy by
land, but by water also;" and he developed the statement in all its
details. "Go back," he entreated Mr. S----, "and say to your State that
if it will return to the Union the slaves will not be interfered with."

"But the Emancipation Proclamation has been issued," Mr. S----

"No matter for that. We will consent to any plan for gradual
emancipation the Texans will make," replied the President: "they may
arrange for it not to go into effect for forty years to come if they
will but return. We will fix it to suit them. One thing is certain,"
he went on: "even if the Confederacy should succeed with the other
Southern States, we will never give up Texas. With it we can fence in
the Confederacy, and whatever befalls we can never let Texas go--never!"

After much further conversation the President led Mr. S---- to the
window and pointed to the trees. "Do you see," he said, "how the buds
upon those boughs are swelling as they yield to the coming spring and
summer? So is it in regard to the matters of which we are speaking:
there is a Power mightier than we which, inevitable, irresistible, is
dealing with them. Upon that Power we also can afford to wait. But we
will never give up Texas, Mr. S----: never!"

Let it be added here, as casting light upon the characteristics of
Texas, that it was never conquered by the Federal forces. Although
attacked often and from almost every quarter, it invariably repelled
the assault. When it succumbed at last it was from within, and not
as the result of any victory achieved by Federal troops upon its own
soil. But all this is merely to show that, superior in many respects
to every other Southern State, the case of Texas was unique in almost
every point of view; and this is stated with reference to what is now
to follow.

When the rebellion began, General Sam Houston, who had been president
of Texas when it was a republic, was governor of the State. In common
with the overwhelming majority of the people, Houston was utterly
hostile to Secession. With them he knew too well what Texas had been
and how it had come into the Union. There was a certain grand inertia
of the great State which resisted the noisy efforts of South Carolina
to drag it out, as a stately ship resists, of itself and although
its crew be passive, the attempts of a little tug to tow it along.
Not one-fourth of the people of the State voted, when the test came,
for Secession, and no man opposed it more determinedly than did its
governor. If, like Texas among the States, he towered among men, almost
a giant in stature and breadth of person, like Texas also he was
peculiar every way. It required men of marked individuality to settle
the country, to wrest it from Mexico, to erect it into a republic; and
no Texan was more emphatically "himself and nobody else" than was the
ponderous chief magistrate. Manifold stories illustrative of this are
still afloat there: let one suffice, even if it shows also the weakness
of the man. One morning when he was president of the republic the
envoy from France called to confer with him upon an affair of critical
importance. The executive mansion was but a log-cabin boarding-house at
the time, and the only thing to be done was for the portly president
to promenade up and down the long porch in front of the building, the
envoy, who was the most polished and nervous of Frenchmen, walking by
his side. But a small nurse-girl was engaged in drawing a screaming
baby upon the porch in a roughly-constructed child's wagon. When
he passed it the president said, with the politeness which always
characterized him when anything female was in question, "Will you be so
kind as to roll your charge somewhere else?" The nurse merely stared
at him, and continued to drag the squalling infant up and down upon
the squeaking wheels, the president and the envoy conferring together
as well as they could as they walked. "My young friend," the former
remonstrated at last as he halted before the girl, "I will esteem it
a singular favor if you will go elsewhere." But it was little the
nurse cared for the affairs of empires, and she paid no attention
to the request. It so chanced that when the rival occupants of the
porch passed each other the next time it was opposite the steep steps
leading down into the yard, the Frenchman being upon that side. As the
president came upon the rolling nuisance, now noisier than before,
he whirled about. "I had rather," he shouted to the astonished girl,
his face ablaze, his arms extended, "meet all hell in harness, and be
dragged down the streets of the New Jerusalem by wild horses, than meet
your horrible cart!" and, glancing around for his companion, he saw
that in the violence of his explosion he had hurled the represented
majesty of France down the steps and into the dirt.

He was an older man when Jeff Davis came along trundling _his_
species of nuisance upon their common path, but he was no milder in
his denunciation. Morning, noon and night, in public addresses and
in private conversation, he left no shadow of doubt in the mind of
any as to his opinion of Secession and its certain result. "Texas
and the Federal government are like two noble mastiffs," he told the
people from the steps of the Capitol at Austin in the earliest days
of the rebellion, "and these miserable politicians are like little
curs snapping and snarling about them to provoke them to fight. When
the mastiffs are launched at last into bloody battle these wretched
curs, holding themselves carefully out of danger, will circle about
the big dogs which are tearing each other to pieces, with their shrill
bow-wow-wows." And the writer remembers how well the old hero imitated
as he said it, and with more accuracy than dignity, the vicious
feebleness of the querulous spaniels.

Nor was the governor backward in doing also what he could to save his
State from the coming chaos. A well-known and efficient lawyer of Texas
hastened to Washington and had an audience with President Buchanan at
the very outset of things, commissioned, doubtless, to do so by General
Houston. "Relieve the officer now in command of that department," he
urged upon Buchanan, "and appoint Houston in his place. Do that, do it
at once, and we can assure you that you need have no fear of seeing
Texas secede." The poor President shrank aghast from the proposition.
We know how clerical in appearance Mr. Buchanan was, especially in the
spotless whiteness of his ample necktie. "When I mentioned Houston to
him," the lawyer said afterward, "he turned as pale as his cravat."

What was to be done? Governor Houston demanded it of himself as he
sat and whittled shingles in his easy-chair at the executive office
in the basement of the Capitol. General Twiggs was in command of the
United States troops in that department, and they comprised one-fourth
of the entire army then at the disposal of the Federal government.
There were one hundred and twenty-one commissioned officers then
in Texas--three thousand troops in thirteen forts and ten camps,
including seven companies of the Third Infantry. At the general's
head-quarters in San Antonio were fifty-five thousand dollars in cash,
and thirty-five thousand stand of arms and seventy cannon within
reach, with horses, mules, ammunition, wagons, tents, in abundance.
In other words, General Twiggs, with a disciplined army and military
stores of the value of over three millions of dollars, was available
for resistance to Secession. But what about the officer in command?
When General Twiggs shortly before had gone on leave of absence to
Georgia, he had left Robert E. Lee in charge, remarking even at that
early date, "If Old Hickory were President he could hold things." But
Twiggs had returned, and Lee had left Texas, saying, "I am going to
Virginia to turn planter. There will be at least one soldier the less
to do the fighting." Could the governor rely upon General Twiggs?
Captain R.M. Potter of the army, then in Texas, assures the writer that
Twiggs did it merely as a ruse and to save time, but the governor had
received tidings from him two months before that he could rely upon
him. As it was, the United States troops were scattered six hundred
miles along the frontier, and something must be done, secretly and
instantly. Governor Houston knew that he could count upon many thousand
volunteers. And not upon men merely as Union men: throughout the State
were multitudes of those whose devotion to Houston was more almost of a
religious nature than a matter of politics. These "Houston men" would
have rallied to him rifle in hand, more or less indifferent to the
cause he espoused, so that if there was to be a fight, and Houston was
to command, he could have had plenty of soldiers, whoever and whatever
was to be fought for or against.

And so the old governor sat awaiting events, a King Canute upon the
seashore, and the ocean already lapping his feet. Almost every one
of the many papers of Texas was ablaze with the prairie-fires of
Secession. Everywhere the men were being rapidly organized into
companies, ladies were making and presenting banners, editors,
recruits, haranguing politicians rushing into the affair as purely from
sentimental considerations, and with as little sound consideration,
as the youngest and most frivolous of the excited beauties who were
decking out lovers and brothers to their death. But the Secession
convention assembled at Austin: how could the governor prevent it?
Resisting the importunities of inflamed, remonstrating, exasperated,
vituperative, threatening men, the old man sat in the executive
department silently whittling away, a cypress shingle in one hand, a
jack-knife in the other. The swarming politicians could not but revere
and be afraid of him. Was he not "Old Sam," "the hero of San Jacinto"?
He had been president of the republic, United States Senator, possible
President of the United States. He was, as has been said, a very large
man, of commanding aspect, and he threw his whole weight, so to speak,
into his detestation and denunciation of Jeff Davis and all his crew.

As he sat and whittled he could not but hear the uproar in the
legislative hall overhead in which the convention was assembled: the
vehement applause of clapping hands and stamping feet reached his ears,
even if he could not hear the eloquence which had aroused it. So far,
he had fired blank shot only from behind his entrenchments, but he
outnumbered--and all knew it--in his one person, and ten times over,
the throngs of brave but mistaken men discussing and rushing through
grandiloquent resolutions above, not a man of whom but was thinking
all along of the governor down stairs as of a sort of legitimate Guy
Fawkes who might at any moment blow their noisy parliament to the moon.
"What do you think Old Sam will do?" That was the question of the day
with them beyond every other. Alas! that was the conundrum which the
governor, ponder as he might, was so far unable to answer. He had
conquered and driven out the Mexicans; had sent the Texan soldiers home
with the one charge, "Go and plant corn;" had seen Texas grow into a
republic under his care; had rejoiced when he had helped place it in
the Union. Now the imperial State was in the act of being hurled into
what he confidently regarded as the most causeless of catastrophes;
but what could he do? That was the supreme question. "What can I do to
prevent it? What ought I to do, to-day and before it is too late?"

Early one morning a man entered the executive office, locked the door
behind him and walked up to the pondering governor, his felt hat in
his hand. It was not his name, but I will content myself with calling
him Jack Jones. You would not have looked at him a second time had
you passed him in the street, for he was merely a tall, pallid-faced,
pigeon-chested, stoop-shouldered victim, apparently, of consumption,
and as mild as could be desired in tone and manner. Governor Houston
knew him well, however--knew him so well that he gave him a cordial
reception and listened to him to the end as his visitor proceeded
to unfold his plans. They were exceedingly simple, and in substance
this: "I hate these scoundrels of the convention as much as you do,
governor, and you know it, and you know _me_! I have got eight hundred
men of the same stripe up in Burnet county. We have plenty of guns and
ammunition, and are more than ready. We can save Texas. Only say the
word, governor, and we will clean out the convention in twenty-four
hours. What do you say?"

The governor debated with himself as he sat. Suppose he consented.
There would be a fight, possibly a bloody massacre. Might not the
Secessionists call another convention to meet at Galveston, Houston,
somewhere else? In any case, war, civil war in its worst form, would
follow. Hat in hand, the messenger waited for his answer. "Thank you,
but not quite yet," the governor said. "Go back to Burnet county and
hold your men in readiness. When I send for you come, and come quick."

There was no time to be lost. "But these men: how am I to feed them
when they come?" the chief magistrate asked of himself.

"About two months before the passage of the Secession ordinance," said
the Mr. S---- to whom allusion has already been made, and in reluctant
answer to the questioning of the writer, "General Houston, Mrs. Houston
and some of their children drove out to my house in the country near
Austin, ostensibly upon a friendly visit. General Houston and myself
took seats on the porch, while the ladies retired to the parlor. After
some of the usual small-talk, the general remarked of the roses then
in bloom, 'I see you have a beautiful garden: let us take a walk among
them.' We did so, but soon took our seats in the arbor. There, after
pledging me to secrecy, he said, 'Although Mr. Lincoln is not yet
inaugurated, he has sent a Mr. Lander to me as an agent to assure me of
all the aid I need the day he takes office if I can but hold the State
until then. General Twiggs,'the governor added,'has agreed to do what
he can to help me. I have eight hundred men waiting to come at a word.
Volunteers will pour in. I am sure that I can, with the aid of General
Twiggs, hold Texas against any force the Confederacy can send. But my
men must be supplied with powder and lead, and must be fed. Above all,'
added the governor, 'they must have plenty of coffee. Can you undertake
the task? I am not going to rob the State treasury, but I pledge you
my honor as governor that you shall be paid in the end. Abundant
assurances have been made me from Washington that the money will be on
hand as soon as Lincoln is inaugurated, and no appropriation will be
necessary from the State.'

"The next day," continued Mr. S---- in narrating the facts to me, "I
saw the governor in his office. Locking himself with me into an inner
apartment, we discussed the whole matter, and I agreed to supply five
hundred thousand rations, and as many more as possible, the governor
insisting again and again upon there being, whatever else might be
lacking, an abundance of coffee. For these rations I was to be paid at
the rate of thirty cents each, and transportation. The governor then
wrote out the contract, spelling out every word aloud, according to his
habit, as he did so. I hastened away with the contract duly signed,
and, going down to Houston and Galveston, I purchased two hundred and
fifty-seven sacks of Rio coffee to begin with--all I could find--and
enough percussion-caps, bacon, rice and flour to meet the emergency
impending. Meanwhile, I could not but laugh at what seemed to me the
puerile efforts at fortification going on in Galveston;" and my friend
paused, as he told me the story yesterday, to unroll and put into my
hand the commission given him by the governor as quartermaster-general
upon his staff with the rank of colonel.

"In two weeks," continued Mr. S----, "I was back again, but the instant
the governor had locked me with him into his inner office he turned to
me with rage in his face. 'Sir,' he said to me in a manner and tone of
voice which I can never forget, 'Twiggs is a traitor!' Then he sank
into a chair, the tears trickling down his heroic countenance, and
sobbed like a child. He then clenched his fist and smote the table
with what seemed to be a suppressed curse, long and deep. After he had
somewhat recovered he repeated to me the message Captain Smith had
brought him from Twiggs. It was in such cautious language as to the
general's isolation and want of instructions from Washington that I
suggested to Governor Houston that possibly he misunderstood General
Twiggs. 'No, sir,' the governor exclaimed, again smiting the table with
his huge fist, 'there can be no mistake. Twiggs is a traitor! We are
to have a fearful civil war;' and he appealed to God for wisdom and
protection in a manner which touched me to the heart. In a few weeks
thereafter," added Mr. S----, "the ordinance of Secession was passed,
and Twiggs surrendered everything to a stageload of politicians and a
preconcerted show of a few men improvised as soldiers whom a corporal's
guard of loyal men could have easily dispersed if there had been any
one to give orders. About a year after this an ex-governor of Texas and
an ardent Secessionist whispered to me in the street, 'Take my advice
and destroy that contract with General Houston.' How it had become
known that there was such a contract is and for ever will be a mystery
to me. But the pity of the whole thing was that Governor Houston was
not the man he had once been--was too old."

Mr. S---- was perhaps the largest merchant at the capital, but the
choicest of his merchandise just then was seven tons of rifle-powder.
This was seized ere long by the Confederate authorities. When Mr. S----
protested against it and refused Confederate money in payment, the
State treasurer hastened to give him his price for the powder in silver
thalers which happened to be rusting in the vaults. Would the Federal
authorities have been as complaisant toward a man in their midst known
to be a rebel and who refused greenbacks? Surely, as in the hesitation
already alluded to of Twiggs and Lee, while the feelings of the leaders
were fired their judgment must to the last have remained but half
convinced as to the justice, and therefore ultimate success, of the
Confederate cause. Gallant as, in most instances, they were, they would
have struck more unhesitatingly, more vigorously, more victoriously,
had every man been able to put his entire self, brain and conscience as
well as heart, into the blow.

It was extremely little of themselves that the Union men of Texas
invested in their show of obedience to Secession when that was
required of them at last. How well the writer recalls the rueful
aspect of a body of these who, to save themselves from worse things,
had been organized into a military company! They comprised some of the
best citizens of Austin, but Falstaff himself did not have, morally
speaking, as forlorn a set of recruits when they formed into dismal
lines under the trees of Court-house Square. Every man had his weapons,
but they dispensed with music: gladly would they have marched and
countermarched without a flag also. But there were ladies ardent in the
cause of Secession who, unasked and with malicious haste, constructed
a particularly large and gorgeous Confederate flag for them. If it was
presented with enthusiasm, it was received by the dolorous warriors
in sepulchral silence, and the wheelings hither and thither of the
ununiformed heroes thereafter were more funereal, if possible, than
before. The one spark of hope in every bosom was that in some way
Governor Houston or somebody else might suddenly employ them against
the flag, more hateful to them than Fluellen's leek, which they were
constrained for the time to flaunt. "Never mind, men," a certain
Mr. O---- in their ranks whispered to them as they sadly trudged
along--"never you mind. Some day we may prove to be the _mucilage_
around which a Federal army will rally."

It so happened that the writer was about this time at the house of
Captain Whitely, a noble-hearted officer of the army who remained true
to the Union. It was in San Antonio, and one morning General Twiggs
drove up in his carriage and entered the parlor. He was a large and
unwieldy man, with an exceedingly red face, and he sat for a time
in sombre silence. "Whitely," he said at last, "what can I do? The
Southern people hate the North as Comanches do the whites, and the
North returns the compliment. Five times have I written to General
Scott, and not a word of instructions has he sent me. What can I do?"

Ignorant as the writer was of such matters, he easily conjectured,
what Twiggs must have well known, that all despatches to and fro were
intercepted. "Ah! what an opportunity!" he thought as he looked at
the hesitating man--"what an opportunity for you to act on your own
responsibility! You may become, if you do, as one of the immortals."

"You are my superior officer," was the only reply of Captain Whitely,
who knew what Twiggs had already determined to do, himself in
consequence thereof soon after a prisoner of war.

And so in a few days Governor Houston's fears were realized. Everything
was surrendered to the Confederacy. As Twiggs rode through the streets
of San Antonio with his disgraced army, many of them weeping as they
went, in such triumphal procession as Rome never knew in its worst
degradation, it was not for nothing that San Antonio had given a large
majority against Secession. An old watchmaker known by everybody
shouted as Twiggs went by, "Hurrah for General Hull!" But the people
did not recognize the name of the man who in other days had dishonored
America by his surrender. They should know what was meant. Mounting
upon a goods box, his white hair upon the breeze, and in a voice heard
by all, the aged patriot shouted, "Three cheers for Benedict Arnold!"
In due time, as we know, the name of Twiggs was struck from the Army
List as a coward and traitor, nor did he make a new name for himself
in the Confederate ranks. The paymaster did not hand over the military
chest to the new authorities. Was there not the half conviction as to
Secession in this also? He placed it upon the porch of his house, and
let them take it instead. I know not how true it is, but it is said
that Davis could not be induced afterward to give employment to this
man, whose name has slipped into oblivion from my memory also.

Somehow, there is always a flash of farce even in the agony of the
darkest tragedy. When Twiggs surrendered his stores he demanded that
somebody should receipt to him for the three millions of United
States property which he gave up. Three small politicians stepped
eagerly forward and signed the document. But Twiggs was not content.
"I must have a more responsible name," he said. And so a Mr. M----,
the wealthiest man in San Antonio, was brought in, and, "as a mere
matter of form" he was told, he attached his name beneath that of the
others. Afterward the possible import of what he had done began to
dawn upon Mr. M----. One day, as he walked the troubled streets of San
Antonio, he was observed to stop and soliloquize aloud. "A---- has
signed that paper," he said to himself. "A----? Yes, he is worth about
one thousand dollars. B----, he signed it, and he couldn't raise over
three thousand to save his life. C----? Heavens! he is not worth one
cent! Three millions of dollars! Good Lord! and _I_ am responsible for
it all!" and, slapping his hand upon his forehead, he rushed away to
digest the thing in private.

The hurly-burly is hushed into silence now. Good men and bad, gallant
but mistaken heroes, and those who faltered not in the fiercest blowing
of the terrible storm--the whole period has come and gone. Like the
sudden "northers" peculiar to Texas, the tempest broke upon it and
passed away, leaving its imperial expanse all the greener and more
fruitful, as if enriched by the blood of so many of its noblest sons.
But for my part, as I look back into the darkness of those days, the
central figure of them all is that of the old governor sitting in his
chair in the basement of the Capitol, the tumultuous convention in
session overhead, sorrowfully meditating what it were best to do. As he
sat a day came when the officer of the gathering up stairs summoned the
old man three times to come forward and take the oath of allegiance,
as governor, to the Confederacy. I remember as yesterday the call
thrice repeated--"Sam Houston! Sam Houston! Sam Houston!" but the man
sat silent, immovable, in his chair below, whittling steadily on. The
pert lieutenant-governor stepped at last with brisk willingness upon
the platform, and was sworn in to an official nothingness in Houston's
place. Very early next morning, when the old man went as usual to his
office, he found his seat occupied by his smirk successor, and there
was nothing for him to do but to abandon his last hope of help from any
quarter and retire. Withdrawing to his plantation, he died before the
war ended, a Union man still.



It seemed an extraordinary chance which brought those two people
together upon that dirty little Neapolitan steamer. But then any
incident of our human lives, divorced from the chain of cause and
effect that has been forging since the world began, would seem
an extraordinary chance, just as this did, which really was not
extraordinary at all.

For the lady had been busy all winter in Rome copying in the Borghese
Gallery, and it was not until she had found herself almost alone among
the deserted rooms, whence all her companions of the year had fled
before fear of the fever, that she had also sought some place where
she could paint, and rest from painting when she would, the remainder
of the summer. This and a second-class railway-ticket were what had
brought her to Naples, where she had driven to the Mole and embarked
upon the little steamer just five minutes before the gentleman, who had
come from Rome in a first-class carriage, also stepped upon it.

His appearance there, just upon that day of all days, might be called
stranger than hers. For, really, there was no reason whatever for his
being there that sleepy midsummer day. Indeed, reason had nothing
whatever to do with it. It was brought about by something quite remote
from reason--by an indescribable longing, which was perhaps, however,
as unyielding a link in the chain of cause and effect--or of destiny,
let us say--as any more visible and tangible one.

These two people were not entirely strangers to each other. Fifteen
years before they had spent a summer together in an old farm-house far
away beyond where the sun would set this evening behind old Roman Baiæ.
That farm-house was wonderfully picturesque, although picturesqueness
had been none of its original builder's intention. It had been a sort
of manor-house, built by a blond and robust English family in memory
of the Elizabethan mansion in which, father and son and son's son,
they had thriven and decayed across the sea. Generations had come
and gone since then. The Tudor gables and overhanging stories, like
the Tudor nose in Westminster Abbey, had felt the tooth of time. The
nose is imperious still, although its royal end is broken off, and it
points heavenward with its regal pride not in the least abated with
its proportions. Unlike the Tudor nose, the Tudor gables had weakened,
and sunk and bulged in all sorts of picturesquely-pusillanimous lines
and curves under a soft veil of moss. The house had become a medley
of quaint humps and protuberances, huddled together without rhyme or
reason by the taste or needs of each succeeding heir. But, flooded and
dashed with blooming, radiant neglect, throttled with many-fingered
vines, the gray centre of a rainbow of wild brier, syringa, hollyhocks
and sunflowers, it was a delight to artistic eyes.

"It's only 'cos pa's enjoyed such pore health for long back, and we
bein' all girls, that the ole place looks so like creation," would
always say one of the "girls," thus apologetic of the dilapidation and
decay which were the chief means of the family's support. For never an
artist passed that way that he did not stay his steps and beg to be
sheltered by that quaint old roof for at least a day or two. And when,
gone hence, the strolling artist would sing of the idyllic nook he had
found in a crescent of hills by the sea, where heaven came down to
earth and board was but two dollars a week, others of his kind would be
sure to be lured by echo of his strain to the same spot.

Thus every summer for three years the house had been full of boarders.
Its owners gained thus the means to live during all the year, and also
were able to secure a reservoir of gossip and tittle-tattle from which
to draw refreshing streams during all the arid days between October's
late dahlias and the earliest roses of June.

The two people upon the Neapolitan steamer had met for the first
time in the great dining-room one noon of June. It was at a farmer's
dinner of beef, potatoes and dandelion-greens, finished with a sort
of machicolated decoration of square pieces of rhubarb pie set beside
each plate in saucers--nicked saucers, whereon indigo mandarins floated
airily over sky-blue hills on their pious way from one indigo pagoda
to another. Dancing vines at the open windows spread quaint, shifting
embroidery over the coarse tablecloth, yellow walls and unpainted
floor. The drowsy hum of bees was heard above the iron clatter of
knives and forks. Sweet incense of myriad rose-censers floated above
the vulgar odors of the meal, and the open doorway with its flat white
doorstone was a picture-frame sculptured in foliage and bloom around a
foreground of wild garden, of black sea-weed and sea-shell, roughened
rocks, and then a borderless stretch of blue glittering sea and sky.
There were half a dozen men and women around the table, who chanced at
the moment the new boarder appeared to be elevating half a dozen noses
in the air before the alkaline fumes of the hot biscuits.

She was rather a pretty little thing, with blue eyes, a collar all
awry, and the headless, leafless stalks of what had once been red roses
standing up valiantly in her brown hair.

"What a flutter-budget!" he thought as he saw by the swift, birdlike
motion of her head that indeed flowers must needs have more than
flower-like frames to remain long undecapitated amid all that

And indeed "flutter-budget" was not amiss as a descriptive word for her
who sang oftener than she spoke, because it was her nature to, and who
danced more naturally than she walked, because God had made her so.

It was rather ridiculous to think of her painting pictures. One
could scarcely imagine her doing anything that required a moment's
repose, and therefore was not unnatural the remark whispered by the
monochromatic Miss Grey into the ear of the water-colored Miss Bray as
the newcomer floated to her seat: "_She_ paint! Mmnph! I wouldn't trust
her to paint a yellow dog!"

Miss Grey, by the by, didn't paint: she only taught Art in five lessons
at seventy-five cents a lesson.

But the monochromatic maiden was right. Annie Deane would have made
a queer mess of painting a yellow dog. But if one chose to give her
an order for a flower-piece, then would be seen how she rivalled
the pearly finish of Nature--how she gathered the rare tints, the
marvellous transparencies and shadows, the breath-broken dewiness,
almost even the fragrance of field and garden favorites, upon her
paper. Thus in time even the yellow-dog sceptic was brought to realize
that there are artistic triumphs even for one who quails and cowers
before the ochreous canine.

"Shall I help you to some more of the greens?" were his first words to
her, seeing her indigo mandarins loom up dimly from her nearly empty

"No, thank you, but I will trouble you for the vinegar," were her first
words to him.

There was nothing novel or suggestive in this, was there? Is there
often anything novel or suggestive in the first greetings we exchange
as we float upon the sea of life with those who hereafter will cause
our wreck or share it?

These two people, He and She, became great friends that summer.
Her fresh, blithe nature was pleasant to him, although, it may be
confessed, its manifestations were sometimes confusing. He was of
rather elephantine temperament, as he was also heroic of stature and
handsome. He was so unswift of speech and motion that she could dance
around him a dozen times before he could say "Jack Robinson;" which, by
the way, he never did say. She often got sadly in the way of his slow,
conscientious sketching from Nature, but he did not complain, for she
was pleasant, he thought, to look upon, even though his palette dried
and the cloud-shadow on hill and sea floated miles away while he did

It was not a sentimental relation that grew up between them. How could
it be when everybody said there was "no sentiment in Ben Shaw, or even
in his pictures"? They were never known to raise any clamor concerning
their "kinship of souls" and all the usual sentimental etcetera. They
liked each other, and took "solid comfort" in the companionship that
made that summer's sketching so much pleasanter than had sketching ever
been for either of them before. That was all.

It was not very long before he very naturally took the place of teacher
and she of pupil, for it was an open secret that she aspired to higher
art than still life, while he, although not six months her senior,
had been longer a student than she. Simpletons that they both were,
they grappled audaciously with the purple, gold-filtered, ever-elusive
and brooding mystery of the distant hills, and struggled with the
infinite suggestiveness of the great, awful sea. They came home every
night from both grapple and struggle with canvases as expressive of
the mighty influences they had labored with as a child's fairy-tale
hints at the divine splendor of mystery of the book of Revelation, and
sat down to their supper of cold beef and doughnuts believing they
feasted on ambrosia and nectar, and lived as divinely as were those
not Massachusetts but Thessalian hills. How insolent is youth, and how
foolish, to us who have outlived it!

Unsymmetrical as this friendship was--that is, so dwarfed on the
sentimental side--there was one of those two silly mortals who thus
fooled themselves with the fancy that this was Olympus and their green
apple-sauce honey of Hymettus who would not have changed places with
the divinest divinity of all the immortal host.

As one moon after another waxed baby-faced and then pined away to a
wan shadow the friends became more inseparable than ever. And, behold!
seeing these things, all the masculine boarders and the "girls" of the
manor-house looked at each other obliquely with an expression that
consorts best with paganism and pig-tails, while the lady-boarders
smiled with that exasperating significance which when given to one's
own affairs makes one yearn for the smiler's scalp. But in spite of
these oblique glances and significant smiles, in spite of everything
indicative of the contrary, they were not an atom in love with each

Unless they both of them fibbed! Which young people in their
circumstances were never known to do.

Nevertheless, one day Annie Deane was sitting in an embrasured window
writing, school-girl fashion, upon an atlas in her lap. She wore a blue
gingham dress in the style of a loose blouse. The skirt was short, and
had no scruples about revealing two nicely-booted feet crossed one over
the other, the toe of one pointing to the zenith, the other toward the
coast of Europe. This was her sketching-costume, and she had not found
time to change it for the more conventional one in which she usually
took tea, as she was hurrying to finish a letter in time for the
butcher, who would soon pass by on his return from Mansfield, to take
to the post-office at Baysville.

The room was spacious, and tried its best to be gloomy. The canopied
bed against the wall was hung with funereal drapery, and reminded one
somehow of a _Cinque-cento_ tomb. When an occupant was extended there
the resemblance could not but be dolorously striking. A tremendous old
chest of drawers opposite, mighty among furniture as Goliath among men,
hung its brass rings massively downward; and I was forcibly reminded
of that chest of drawers the other day when I saw how the sainted dead
of imperial Rome were packed away in the Catacombs of St. Calixtus.
Imagine a chest of drawers which gives an impression that upon pulling
its brass rings one will see, not dainty garments frothy with lace and
ruffles, but a spectacle of rich animal mould and white holy bones!
There were one or two dignified old chairs--judicial, majestic chairs,
which evidently imagined that they impressed the vulgar radicals
of this New World with the idea that in their own country they had
been thrones or something of that sort. It was a most dignified and
impressive room in spite of its rag carpet, its cane-seated rockers,
camp-stools, books, the sketches pinned upon the walls, flowers, and
all the odds and ends of feminine finery that betrayed the levity
of its modern habit. That is, perhaps one might better say it would
have been dignified and impressive had one ever been able to see it
otherwise than as merely an architectural background, like the chairs
behind Giovanni Bellini's gracious Madonnas, to the pretty picture of
youth and content writing there by the seaward window. Everybody always
spoke of Annie Deane as "little," although she was five feet four in
her stockings. Everybody always ran away with the impression--and
treated her accordingly--that she was very young, although she had
seen every day of twenty-five years. "I was born young, and have never
learned much of anything since," she would laughingly say when somebody
had called her "child" and advised her about her manners.

She _was_ a child spiritually, and it certainly seemed as if she would
never be spiritually grown up. Her father had died at sixty, so springy
of step, so airy of movement, so jaunty, so natty, so nice in his No.
3 gaiters and his nobby hats, that to see him ten paces off one would
have sworn he had not twenty years upon his canary-bird head. Annie was
like him, and her head swung and swayed, fluttered and tiptilted on its
graceful neck, as much as his had done as a young canary-bird's ways
are like an old one's.

"Ef the air of that girl ain't enough to make a hoss larf!" said,
with edifying perseverance, the youngest and burnt-umberest of the
burnt-umber maidens with whom they boarded.

Miss Roberta Editha was sentimental and thirty-five. She pressed a
vision of beauty to her virginal breast. Years before she had cut
from some illustrated paper a very pretty picture representing some
strolling actor who played Hamlet and Claude Melnotte upon the boards
of rural theatres. It had miraculously large eyes, a small mouth with
downward curves, and flat rings of hair upon its pallid brow. Its air
was generally cankered and worm-eaten, but Miss Roberta ("Old Bob,"
some of the graceless artists called her behind her back) interpreted
that air as expressive of a soul which found this life of too rank and
coarse a flavor for its daily food. She had cut out this woodcut, and
had worn it for years in a massive heirloom locket around her long,
brown neck.

It was the Ideal of her Yearning Soul. "Never till I meet a Being like
this will I give my heart," she had said, now these many years. Once
she thought she had met that Being: it was the natty clerk who sold her
calico and clothes-pins at Mansfield. But when that mercenary Hylas
married a Baysville widow with money she wept a while, and then saw
clearly through her tears that the deceiver looked not in the least
like a Being, but only like a very commonplace man. Once again it was
an artist who had boarded with them a summer, and whose red hair fell
over his rosy brow in a manner that indicated a possible Being. But it
turned out that this artist was married and the father of a thriving
family; whereupon he too faded out of Roberta Editha's ideal world into
the prosaic region where are not Beings, but only men and women. After
that it was several artists, all of whom in turn had died, under some
blight, out from the thoughts of the burnt-umber maiden. Latterly she
had been bending soulful eyes upon Ben Shaw, sure that at last in his
lineaments she could trace the adored image. Ben's eyes were neither
miraculously large nor superlatively dark: neither had he a small mouth
with downward curves. He was blond and robust, inclined to be rather
high-colored, especially after dinner, which proved his digestion
defective or that appetite outran it; but, setting such little
discrepancies aside, she was sure her Ideal was there.

But while Roberta Editha described Annie Deane's airy manners in such
unflattering terms, it is more than probable that Ben Shaw would be
saying to the latter at that very moment, "Never lose your youthful
nature, and always preserve your young ways, Annie: they are your
greatest charm." For this was a habit with Ben Shaw.

She was smiling and bridling now as she wrote by the seaward window,
although she must have known that nothing could see her save that
turquoise crescent of sea, the blue arch of the sky and the swaying
rose-globes and leaves that shadowed her paper. She could not even
dip her pen into the ink like anybody else, but must needs poise over
it for a breezy instant, just as a humming-bird flutters over honeyed

She had just written these words: "Truly, mamma dear, he has never said
a word of love to me, and yet, strange as it may seem, I am as sure
that he loves me as--"

A voice called up from the southern-wood thicket under her window,
where somebody, rubicund with stooping, was picking burdock-burrs from
off his trousers' legs, "Miss Deane, will you go with me to see the
sunset from Castle Rock? We can be home in time for supper."

When the butcher rattled by in company with a staring calf's head
and quivering pig's liver, nobody hailed him from the Tudor mansion.
Roberta Editha was kneading bread on top of a flour-barrel in the
buttery; Ethelberta was picking over currants on the back doorstep;
and Miss Bray stood a little way off toward the lichen-grown stone
wall blocking in her Antignone wailing over Polynices. Miss Bray had
chosen the elder and more commonplace Ethelberta for her suggestion of
a position, rather than the younger and more poetic Roberta Editha, for
the simple reason that the former's attitude over her currants was more
suggestive of an heroic corpse on her knees and less of a chastised
infant than Roberta's would be under any circumstances.

Rowena, the eldest of the "girls," was busy at that moment, if the
truth must be told, in looking to see if any of the boarders had
carelessly left bureau-drawers or writing-desks unlocked. The boarders
were all absent upon hill or shore, the invalid father slept in his
chair, the mother in Baysville cemetery, and the Tudor mansion was

On a monster rock a mile or more away two figures made silhouettes
against the jewelled sunset.

"Annie," said one of the figures, "I did not wish to make a
sensation by telling it first at the supper-table, and I want _your_
congratulations before any others. I have sold my _Esmeralda_. I go to
Boston to-morrow, and shall sail for Europe next week."

Her sight was darkened, her heart stood still. Life seemed to die out
of her with one horrible pang. Nevertheless, in an instant her head
tiptilted, and she twittered her congratulations as airily as if the
whole universe had burst into a sudden marvel of bloom and beauty and
she were the first humming-bird born into it.

"Always keep your young nature and preserve your young ways, Annie," he
said admiringly: "they are your greatest charm."

Then they turned and walked supperward together.

       *       *       *       *       *

The Neapolitan steamer was greasy and smelled of garlic and bitumen.
The red-shirted sailors were singing "Santa Lucia" from high and low,
and a stalwart contadina was accompanying them with her tambourine down
in the third-class place. Very few passengers were scattered about the
deck, and the general speech was of the Blue Grotto. Evidently, of the
first-class passengers only two were making more than an excursion from
Naples, the excursionists intending to return with the steamer after a
peep into the famous cave.

One of these two persons was rather a remarkable-looking lady. She wore
a jaunty hat many years too young for the face: it did _not_ shade.
Her coquettish jacket and short skirt made her from a distance--a very
long one--seem like a girl of eighteen. She wore her hair in a girlish
braid--alas, woefully faded! She was airy of motion and coquettish of
gesture, evidently one of those sad women who, burying their heads from
the sight of the passing years, fancy that Time forgets to touch them.

The other person was a handsome gentleman of more than forty. The
Hyperion curls had been thicker on his brow than now, and his shadow
more slender, but it by no means follows that he was as bald as
Cæsar or as bulky as the Belvidere Torso. He was dressed in elegant
travelling costume, and, as well-dressed men must be, with coat
evidently of London make and trousers Parisian.

As he dropped a handsome travelling-satchel on the coal-flecked seat
beside the lady's color-box he chanced to meet her eye. It was a
curious meeting of eyes that had last met so differently. He had only
time to commune with his secret soul, "What a larky old girl!" when a
look of half-startled recognition came into his face.

It was reflected in hers, and a humming-bird tremor passed over her.

"Was this not formerly Miss Deane?" he asked.

"It _is_ Miss Deane, Mr. Shaw," twittered the lady, with head tiptilted
like a frosted flower.

Alas! what a tyrant is that power which makes and moulds us like
potter's clay to her own patterns, whether of glory or shame, and whom
we call Nature!--a tyrant which forms us into that which we would cry
and pray not to be were there any ear to be moved by our beseeching.
Alas, poor Annie! It was not her fault that Nature took a canary-bird
for her model. And it is the fault of none of us that the graces of our
youth become grotesquenesses with our forties.

"Who would ever have dreamed of our meeting here? And to think you
are still Miss Deane!" he exclaimed with obtuseness pre-eminently
masculine. "But you are very pale: does the motion of the steamer make
you ill?"

Nearer and nearer came the opalescent isle, drawn like a jewelled
chariot by thousands of blue coursers with foaming mouths.

After fifteen minutes or so of vague reminiscences and comparisons of
experiences of travel the gentleman seemed to fall into a brown study
and to become almost rudely oblivious of his companion's presence. His
eyes were riveted upon the island with a strange intensity. Could the
airy little old maid by his side have heard the beating of the heart
in that broad bachelor bosom, she would have been astonished, as would
almost anybody else, to hear its sentimental music. "At last, after
all these cruel years!" was its refrain.

Cruelty was evidently a discipline that did not impoverish his physical

Upon the beach was a scene of uproar and confusion. Brown-faced
peasant-girls, with dark eyes like wild sylvan creatures, thrust
wilted flowers into the travellers' hands and clamored for _soldi_.
Fisher-boys, almost as naked as bronze cupids, yelled offers to guide
anybody and everybody up the heights to the village. Bright-shirted
and bare-legged boatmen, with Indian locks and huge gold crescents in
their ears, bellowed to each other, while weatherbeaten crones screamed
till they were hoarse that here were the saddled donkeys on which _i
signori_ could ride.

Mr. Shaw assisted Miss Deane--whom, until he saw her nearly pulled in
pieces between two donkey-women, he had quite forgotten--upon one of
the most docile-looking of the animals.

She mounted with such thistledown sprightliness that she nearly went
over the saddle and down on the other side. He looked astonished as she
fluttered above his hat, and then--forgot her.

If any one find this portly bachelor discourteous and basely recreant
to certain of the best memories of his manhood, let that one stop a
moment and think. This frisky lady, who always seemed carrying on a
most desperate flirtation with some invisible adorer, was certainly not
the Annie of his summer in the Tudor mansion. She was spiritually not a
day older than Annie, but her face was very much older; and what, after
all, is the same soul to us if the casket is strange? What is a young
face grown old to us who knew its youth and have not seen its changing?
Moreover, that perennial youth of hers, touching and sad as it may
possibly seem when thought about, would have been the object of your
ridicule could you have seen it face to face.

Much as we may prate of natures ever young, there is no more melancholy
sight in the world than soul and body that miss step with each other in
this heavy and forced march called Life. Why should we seek to keep our
hearts young, we who must die? For unto youth or youthfulness what is
death but darkness and night at noonday?

Then another thing to excuse Mr. Shaw's apparent neglect: he was
approaching a crisis of his own life, and what are the convulsions of a
universe compared to those quicker heart-beats which we call Crises in
our little lives?

After assisting Miss Deane he mounted another donkey, and rode, not
exactly like paladin of old, but like a portly and absent-minded modern
tourist, silently by her side up the steep path, whither their luggage
followed them upon the heads of women.

Between their donkeys strode a bare-legged woman in a ragged petticoat.
She was bronzed and wrinkled, with straggling hair thrust through with
a silver arrow, and coarse brown chemise falling widely open over an
unlovely neck and breast. She uttered many a strident yell, accentuated
by heavy thwacks of her club upon her donkeys' flanks. She was dirty,
wild-eyed and hideous. It were as difficult to imagine her comely
and young as to believe this little dried-up old girl had not been a
flirting old maid from her cradle.

Ah, but Nature is cruel to woman! Freshness and beauty of flesh are
hers, not that she may rejoice in her own beauty and freshness, but
that she may become the mother of men. Bearing children, in the bearing
dies one beauty and charm after another, just as trees die, leaf
by leaf, which have enriched the world by their allotted harvests.
Childless, her beauty and freshness die of her unfruitfulness, while
Nature's pet offspring, man, waxes strong and proud years after all her
leaves have fallen.

Look at these three people: the handsome and robust bachelor was the
oldest of them all.

"What a capital model she would make for an Erinnys hunting Orestes to
his fate!" thought Miss Deane.

She was bumping up and down in her saddle like a rubber ball.
Nevertheless, in the pauses of those bumps she had time enough to grow
very angry at something she saw. She turned a regular Spitzenberg red
as she detected the searching, passionate gaze her companion bent
upon every pretty islander they met. She saw the black-eyed girl with
a huge bundle of fagots on her head, the brown-eyed one with immense
building-timbers pressing down her curly locks, the blue-eyed one with
copper water-jar gleaming goldenly over her dagger-thrust braids, smile
significantly after coquettishly returning his gaze.

They are not so guileless as one might think, those picturesque,
brown-skinned island-girls. Too many foreign artists have come this
way, and too many strong-limbed, full-chested girls have become first
their models, then mothers of their children, and then their wedded
wives, not now-a-days to look upon every gazing _forestiere_ as a
possible husband, or at least lover.

Yet is it true that not one of them dreamed of the feeling beneath that
immaculately-laundried shirt-bosom as the wearer turned away from them,
one girl after another. Why should they, forsooth? Had not even Ben
Shaw's own friends always declared there was no sentiment in him, or
even in his pictures?

At one of her donkeys' stumbles over the lava-stones the driver yelled
so horribly in Miss Deane's ears that that lady's discomfort puckered
her face up like a frozen apple.

Mr. Shaw saw it. "By Jove!" he remarked to his donkey, who laid back
its ears and pretended to understand English, "I must have been very
veally ever to find that face pretty! But there's one thing sure: she
has taken on a thousand girlish airs and graces with every year she has
lived since then."

Poor Annie! Not an air or a grace had she more than fifteen years
before. And how was she to know that she was too old for a girl's ways,
she who had never ceased to be a girl to become wife and mother?

Quoth Mr. Shaw to the driver, "My good woman, if you will drive these
beasts with less noise it will be better for your _buona mancia_."

The "good woman" stared. She had done a good deal of staring since they
left the beach far down below. Her eyes in this moment looked out
fiercer than ever from the bed of wrinkles folded about them by many a
tropical sun and scorching sirocco. "Has the signor ever been upon the
island before?" she asked a moment later.

"Si, madre mia: I was here one summer several years ago. I lived in
yonder palm-shaded house facing toward Sicily. I painted pictures
here. Afterward I went away to my own country." Then he added, with
melancholy intonation, half under his breath, "I ought to have returned
long ago: I have come only to-day."

Miss Deane was looking over the tops of lava-walls that narrowed in
their climbing way. She saw pale-green vineyards changing color and
trembling in the sea air like a maiden under her lover's first kiss.
Gloomy stone-pines guarded the hills like eternal sentinels. Through
dim gray-green olive-thickets houses that seemed of alabaster shimmered
and shone in the sunshine.

They had now climbed so high up the orange- and lemon-flecked sides of
the island that Vesuvius yonder seemed to sink low and slumberously
upon the bosom of the radiant bay, while Naples across the little
stretch of sea showed vaguely white in the golden distance, scarcely
more real than a city sculptured in snow beneath an August sun. Up from
vineyard and thicket, down from the village and the cactus-pencilled
heights beyond, came the long-drawn, melancholy wail which is the
islander's song at his labor, but which is weird and mournful enough to
be the swan-song of a parting soul to its mate.

She was aroused from her artistic dreaminess by the croaking of a voice
broken by years of vociferous yellings: "Dio mio! si: you painted
Antonia Pisano. Yes, yes, I remember. You painted her over on yonder
cliff, from whence she watched the barca of her lover Giuseppe gone
fishing for coral over on the African coast. You called the picture
_Good-bye, Sweetheart_. Si, I remember. You were handsomer than you
are now, and your shoulders were not so broad. There were patches all
over your velveteen blouse, and you remained here after all the other
foreign artists were gone, because the money came not with which you
must pay Giaccomo for the macaroni you had eaten for months, and the
barber Angelo in the piazza for the canvases and colors you had used in
painting Antonia all the months of that summer. Si, si, I remember."

The handsome bachelor looked distressed at the coarsely-vivid realism
with which the woman pictured that most idyllic summer of his life.

Miss Deane considerately pretended not to have heard, and kept her blue
eyes vaguely set in the direction of the dread volcano dreaming in the
arms of the bay. But she had mistaken the cause of her countryman's
embarrassment. And who would not have done so, believing as all the
world does that romance and robustness mate not together?

"Yes, I was very poor in those days. Many and many a dinner did I go
without, that I might buy a new kerchief for Antonia or send to Naples
for another string of beads for her neck. Those patches betrayed
only half my poverty, for nobody knew that I put them there myself
to save the few soldi a seamstress would demand, that I might give
Antonia another festa and worship her wild grace as she danced the
tarantella and rattled her castanets upon the moonlighted roof of some
fisher-friend's house."

He seemed to address Miss Deane, for he spoke in English. She, in
common politeness, could not do less than say, "Indeed! And who was

"She is the loveliest creature on the island, and as good as she is
beautiful. She came as straight from the heart of Nature as a flower
or a bird's song. Neither poetry nor painting could ever grasp the
freshness of her wild sweetness: one must see her to know the abject
poverty of their highest efforts."

To hear such adolescent rubbish from middle-aged lips what sensible
mortal would not have giggled in his sleeve?

Strangely enough, it was the donkey-woman who proved her good sense and
surprised them both not only by laughing discordantly aloud, but by
speaking in very broken but intelligible English: "Si, si, I remember.
And why have you come back to the island, signor?"

Actually, the bachelor blushed. "To marry Antonia," he said as
bashfully as if he weighed one hundred instead of two hundred and
twenty pounds, "and to remain on this savagely-beautiful isle all the
rest of my life."

This he had said in Italian. But he continued, half musingly, in his
mother tongue: "I could not take her away with me _then_, even though
I loved her with all my heart and she was willing to share my poverty.
I had not the heart to see her pine and pale in narrow city streets. I
knew that she was a wild flower that would lose fragrance and beauty,
would die, if transplanted from its native soil. I went away to earn
money enough that I might come back and live with my darling where only
she could live at her best. I have worked hard for her in all these
years. I know I ought to have come sooner, but it insensibly grew a
habit with me each year to wait yet one year more, that I might come to
her a little richer. But I have come at last. I have sent her letters
and presents each year, and she has written me often through some
amanuensis, for she cannot write herself; and I am come to her able to
say truly that she is the only woman I ever loved, or ever imagined
myself to have loved, in all my life."

How little that man dreamed who heard him say this--that one heard him
who for fifteen long years had guarded in the purest crystal of her
memory the belief, "though all things fade and die, and even he forget
me, yet _once_ he loved me"! This to her, the faded, slight little
old maid, thumping up and down on her donkey like a Neapolitan girl's
fist on her tambourine, whose crystal-guarded treasure turned to dust
before her eyes, and who knew thus for the first time that it was but a
spurious treasure she had guarded since that summer by the sea!

She seemed somehow much smaller and paler, more faded and wrinkled,
than before, when the donkey-woman laughed again. That unlovely
creature said, with witch-like laughter, "You told Antonia that you
loved her better than Giuseppe ever could--that you would marry her and
make her a signora who should wear a gold ring and have shoes for every
day. You went away saying that you would come back when you had sold
your pictures. You have not come back until to-day, and you come back
to laugh at poor Antonia for being such a fool as to believe a foreign
signor would tell the truth to an island-girl."

She gave a thundering thwack upon the donkeys' flanks as the party
rushed across the tiny lava-paved piazza where all the island was
gathered to see the new arrivals pass on through a dusky-arched street
to the albergo-door.

The cook, chambermaid, landlord, facchino and landlady rushed to bid
the travellers welcome in island fashion. The landlord was barefooted;
the landlady was the fruitful bough from which hung an apple-shaped
infant; the cook, chambermaid and facchino were each armed with
the insignia of their different professions--stewpan, broom and

Returning their salutations, the gentleman and lady descended from
their steeds. Mr. Shaw turned to pay the donkey-woman for her services.

And, behold! she lifted up once more that hoarse, broken voice to croak
with frightful glee, "Make it a good buona mancia, Signor Ben, for the
sake of old times. It was Giuseppe who answered your letters: I am
Antonia his wife, mother of his ten children. It should be a good, a
brave buona mancia that I did not wait for you--not thirteen years, not
even six months, only till Giuseppe came home from his coral-fishing."

Till her dying day the little old maid will never forget the look
that settled upon his face after the first paralyzed moment in which
he realized the woman's meaning. It was such a look that she hastily
averted her eyes and tremblingly followed the chambermaid up the wide
stone stairs.

She never saw him afterward, for he left the island that same evening.
But she heard of him only last summer. He has married a sprightly girl
of eighteen, and has some renown in his own country--that of being
the heaviest eater, sleeper, talker and _sitter_ of the Lotus Club.

As his friends always said, he has no sentiment, even in his pictures.

As for Miss Deane, she is no older now than then. The volatile drops in
her blood effervesce as of old, and her flirtation is as desperate with
that invisible adorer as if she were twenty instead of--more.

But it is true that sometimes, at long intervals, she takes a bit of
yellow paper from a secret place, and her spectacles grow dim (she
wears them only in private) as she reads, in a feminine hand that seems
to skip and chipper all over the page, "Truly, mamma dear, he has
never said a word of love to me, and yet, strange as it may seem, I
am as sure that he loves me as--" Then she usually giggles, in queer,
mirthless fashion, as she chirrups, "What a ridiculous little goosie
I was!" before she folds the paper away for another long repose,
readjusts her coquettish but scanty frizzes, and goes down stairs again
to her invisible adorer and her perpetual flirtation.

And nobody hears the wail in her foolish old-young heart as she goes:
"Ah, why might it not have been?"

Alas! why not?

For then she might have been less lively, and he less dead, both grown
side by side into richer, fuller, sweeter ripeness for the great
harvester whom we call Death.



The traveller who, leaving Paris by express at 10 A.M., reaches the
Orleans dépôt at Limoges at six in the evening, will see spacious
boulevards, imposing buildings and a general air of stateliness and
pretension, recalling the metropolis he left behind him in the morning.
His omnibus will whisk him through streets crowded with promenaders, a
picturesque panorama of well-dressed people, with a generous sprinkling
of the light-blue jackets of the chasseurs, the gleaming helmets of the
dragoons, the red kepis of the infantry, the broad-brimmed hats and
sable mantles of the priesthood and the red-and-orange head-kerchiefs
of the working-women. If it be late in the season and the days are
short, he will see at every turn cafés ablaze with light, and the wide
sidewalks before them lined with tables at which, cool as it may be,
crowds of loungers are seated sipping bier, absinthe or eau sucrée.
But, looking up the dingy side-streets, here and there he may detect,
by the lines of flickering, straggling gas-lights, glimpses of another
Limoges--glimpses of steep streets ending in stairways; of narrow and
darkened passages where the opposite buildings nod to each other from
across the street until they all but touch; of courts where curious
little enshrined images of the Madonna and the saints look down from
niches in the corners, and where heads are peeping out from every
window to catch a whiff of evening air; and of sombre alleys, each
lighted by a single lamp suspended midway, under the uncertain rays
of which swarms of children and dogs are vying to awaken the loudest

A great conflagration devastated Limoges in 1865, but it proved to
that city what our political economists would have us believe the
national debt has been to the United States--a blessing in disguise.
Incident to the rebuilding of the burnt quarter a spirit of general
renovation seems to have crept over the minds of the city fathers, and
from that time to the present the work of tearing down old buildings
and widening or straightening narrow or crooked streets has been
pushed forward to such a degree that were some Limousin Rip Van
Winkle, after a twenty years' slumber in the adjacent mountains, to
happen in suddenly upon the haunts of his childhood, he would open
his eyes as wide as did his Knickerbocker namesake. But there are
some things that no amount of outlay or engineering can accomplish;
and though many costly improvements have been made in modernizing
Limoges and bringing it up to a realizing sense of its dignity as the
great porcelain-manufacturing city of Europe, there are yet within its
walls some streets so crooked that nothing short of total demolition
will ever straighten them, and others so steep and rocky that enough
nitro-glycerine to shake down a hundred neighboring houses would have
to be employed to level them. So it has come to be acknowledged that,
with all the goodwill in the world for putting on modern airs, there
are tumble-down, straggling, rickety relics of the past in Limoges
which no amount of municipal resolutions or appropriations--nothing, in
fact, but an earthquake--can ever remove. Every lover of the antique
and quaint will fervently pray that no such disaster may ever come to
efface the curious reminders of a time gone by.

For they are the pages upon which successive centuries have left their
imprints. Here, for instance, is a street called the Rue du Consulat.
By a happy coincidence, the United States consular office fronts upon
it, but let not the patriotic American flatter himself that the street
thence derives its name. Here lived one of the Roman proconsuls, and
here stood the building in which the governors of the city, formerly
known as "consuls," held their sessions. In this simple fact we
discover a suggestion of the impress left by the domination of the
Romans. But on their heels, in turn, came the Visigoths; then Clovis,
who made Limoges one of his first conquests; and then the Saracens, who
barely set foot on the soil ere Charles Martel's victory at Poitiers
compelled them to leave. Some fragmentary bands, however, remained
in the province, and one of them founded the neighboring city of
Eymontiers, where buildings of Arabic architecture are still standing.

The Moors, surging northward from Spain, have left their impress in
these fertile valleys that border the Vienne--an impress everywhere
visible in the olive complexions and the costumes of the people, and
audible in their language. The ethnologist is astonished at discovering
so far to the North all the characteristics of a Spanish population.
On fair-days, when the peasantry from a wide circuit are gathered on
the Champ de Foires, one hears spoken a dialect incomprehensible to
ordinary Frenchmen. It is a patois, a rolling, mellifluous brogue, much
resembling the Gascon or the tongue spoken in the Basque provinces
among the Pyrenees. Nor are the country-people the sole monopolists
of this singular accent: the talk of most of the town-people is more
or less tinctured with it. It is to the pure French what a good sweet
Irish brogue is to the pure English. It is "Gascon"--and, after all,
that is the only word that describes it--and you hear it spoken at
every corner in Limoges, just as you meet everywhere swarthy faces,
lustrous black eyes, raven hair and a marked dominance of the Southern

Limoges has had many masters. Charlemagne made a present of it to
his son, Louis le Débonnaire. On another occasion, though the place
is nearly two hundred miles inland, the Norman pirates came marching
in and sacked it utterly. Louis the Stammerer, Carloman and Eudes
were each in turn here crowned king of Aquitaine, and the last in 876
established the line of viscounts of Limoges, the last of whom, Henry
of Navarre, reunited the domain to the crown of France. These viscounts
inhabited from the thirteenth century the castle of Chalusset, about
ten miles distant from the city. Its ruins are still interesting, and
are a favorite resort for pleasure-parties. But still more frequently
visited are the ruins of the castle of Chalus or Chabrol, where
Richard C[oe]ur de Lion fell in 1199. A railway-ride of an hour to
Bussière-Galand, and another hour by stage, bring the visitor there.
The very spot on which Richard fell is pointed out, and even at
this late day it is proposed to erect there a monument bearing this


After Richard's death Limoges kept on changing masters as before.
In 1355, Edward the Black Prince unfurled the British flag from its
battlements, but Bishop Jean de Crose, in whose charge he had left it,
delivered it over to the king of France. Edward returned in wrath,
recaptured it and put many of the inhabitants to the sword. Under
Charles VII. Limoges became permanently a French city, retaining its
peculiar form of local government by twelve consuls, which constituted
it a sort of independent republic. As Jeanne d'Albret, mother of
Henry of Navarre, was viscountess of Limoges, it was impossible that
the surrounding province should escape being drawn into the wars of
religion. At Roche l'Abeille, a few miles south of the city, is the
battle-field where Admiral Coligny's Protestant army met and defeated
the royal forces under the duke of Anjou. But with the accession of
Henry IV. came a new order of things, and the visit of that monarch in
1605 opened an era of industry, prosperity and peace.

To this day the butchers of Limoges have good cause to remember Henry's
visit. That chivalrous but improvident ruler was always pecuniarily
embarrassed, and never, it appears, more so than on that October
day when, preceded by the flower of the military, magistracy and
ecclesiastical dignitaries of the province, he rode in through the
gorgeous gateway surmounted by a colossal figure of the giant Limovex,
the traditional founder of the city, which held a silver key in the
right hand and a heart in the left, by way of tendering to His Majesty
the submission and affections of the city. The butchers' guild was at
that period notoriously prosperous and wealthy. A happy conceit entered
the royal mind. For and in consideration of a handsome sum of money and
so many horses he offered to accord them in perpetuity the right of
heading the escort whenever thereafter royalty should enter the city.
The butchers took up the offer, paid the cash, produced the required
number of horses, and in return received a charter and privileges
which they have jealously guarded to this day. In 1810, when the duc
de Berri, and in 1844, when the duc de Montpensier, visited Limoges,
the butchers, with their white flag bearing a green cross, led the
van in the processions that escorted them. The butchers form a little
community, living all to themselves in the heart of the city, and
intermarrying to such a degree that only five or six surnames are to
be found among the eighty-odd families composing them. In the crooked,
narrow little street, only two blocks long, which they inhabit--it is
called the Rue des Boucheries--there are none but meat-shops, and the
names "Cibeau," "Malvolin" and one or two others predominate on the
signs over the doorways. In this babel of patronymics nicknames become
necessary to distinguish one from another, and accordingly we find one
man known as "_alias_ Louis XVIII.," another as "_alias_ the Captain,"
and so on through a variety of amusing sobriquets. These butchers are
richer to-day, if anything, than they were in Henry's time, and there
is no impecunious monarch to levy on them now. They have their own
place of worship too, a little chapel dedicated to St. Aurelien, and
standing modestly aside in a court at the foot of their narrow street.
It is scarcely larger than the vestibule of an ordinary church, and
its exterior is as plain as that of any country barn. But step quietly
in, and as soon as your eyes are accustomed to the gloom look about
you. What a surprise! Frescoes, stained glass, paintings, statuary,
tapestries and vessels of gold and silver are crowded together with
lavish profuseness in that little sanctuary. A monolith cross dating
from the fifteenth century stands just outside the portal, bearing
exquisitely-carved representations of Christ, the Virgin and the
apostles--a gem of sculpture rearing itself unexpectedly in the midst
of a muddy and squalid neighborhood.

The history of Limoges, like that of most European cities, is
closely interwoven with that of its churches. St. Michael of the
Lions, familiarly known as the Church of the Boule d'Or from a large
gilded ball which adorns its tapering spire, stands upon one of the
highest points in the city. About its base, in the niches between
its projecting abutments, cobblers and dealers in old clothes and
bric-à-brac have, with the sanction of time, reared unopposed their
rickety shanties, so that the church-walls, with their ancient carvings
and quaint designs, seem to spring up incongruously out of a medley
of combustible rubbish. On the steps at the main doorway, in careless
disorder, are to be seen the three life-size stone lions which gave the
church its name. They date from the twelfth century, and are so worn by
time that only the outlines of their features are still discernible.
St. Michael's spire, which is one hundred and sixty-five feet high and
ascended by an iron ladder on the exterior, was completed in 1383.
The interior of the church is richly adorned, though somewhat defaced
during the Revolutionary days of '93, when it was reared into a temple
of Reason and witnessed many a saturnalian orgy, during one of which
one of its finest windows was broken to fragments.

But it is at the cathedral that the Revolution has left most plainly
visible to future generations the marks of its iconoclastic hammers
and chisels. To reach it from St. Michael's we must thread our way
across the town from the heights to the plateau overlooking the river,
where, in the heart of the ancient quarter known as "the Cité," stands
the grand old cathedral of St. Étienne. Its cornerstone was laid June
1, 1273, though two other churches and a Roman temple to Jupiter had
previously stood on the same site. Successive bishops have pushed it
toward completion, but it was only in 1847 that a complete restoration
of the edifice was begun. Monsigneur Duquesnay, the present bishop, has
raised a subscription of half a million of francs for that purpose.
The tower, one hundred and eighty-six feet high, when viewed from any
point in the environs looms up a conspicuous object in the picture.
Within, the church is remarkable for the boldness of its vaults and
arches and the elegance of its workmanship. Numerous works of the
Middle Ages and the Renaissance--among which are six bas-reliefs
representing the Labors of Hercules--adorn the walls. These classical
works the Revolutionists spared: it was only upon the ecclesiastical
sculptures that they sought to wreak their hate. In the chancel the
remains of three bishops--Raynard de la Porte (1325), Bernard Brun
(1349) and Jean de Langeac (1541) repose beneath stone mausoleums,
the last of which contains fourteen bas-reliefs of the Visions of the
Apocalypse. These mausoleums too are sadly defaced: the full-length
stone figures of the deceased prelates which lie recumbent on top of
their respective tombs are minus noses and hands.

But to the antiquarian the most interesting feature of the cathedral
is that portion of its foundation which formed a part of the Roman
basilica that stood on this site. It was transformed from a temple of
Jupiter to a Christian church by St. Martial, a contemporary of the
apostles, sent hither from Rome to preach the gospel to the Gentile
Lemovices. St. Martial is honored to this day as the patron saint
of Limoges. When he died some pious priests formed a brotherhood to
preserve his tomb, and at that tomb have since knelt Popes Urban II.
and Clement V., Edward of England, Blanche of Castile, Henry IV.,
Louis VII., XI. and XIII. of France, and many great lords and princes,
who, it must be remembered, had to journey hither in days when no
palace-coaches and lightning mail-trains were at their disposal.
Railroads have put a heavy discount on the ancient pilgrimage business.

In the tenth century a terrible plague, known as the _mal des ardents_,
swept off forty thousand Limousins in a few weeks. The survivors,
hopeless save of divine intervention, prayed that St. Martial's remains
might be brought from the tomb where they had been reposing for nearly
a thousand years and exposed to public view. All the relics of other
saints that could be collected in the neighborhood were brought into
Limoges, as if to form a cortége of honor to the remains of the patron
saint of Aquitaine. Upon a hill in the environs, now known as the Mont
de la Joie, the sacred fossils of the departed just were held up that
all might gaze upon them and be healed. By what particular process
the manifestation of these osseous fragments of defunct ecclesiastics
resulted in a banishment of the pestilence one finds it difficult to
explain, save on general principles of faith and Professor Tyndall's
prayer-test. Nevertheless, history records that the plague was stayed.
A chapel was erected upon the hilltop, which is now tunnelled by a
railroad, and from that day the public display of these saintly relics,
at intervals of every seven years, has become an established ceremonial
known as the Festival of the Ostension. It is celebrated on Thursday
of Mid-Lent by a procession conducted with great pomp and ceremony.
The flag of the brotherhood of St. Martial, an immense white banner
with a red cross, is first blessed by the bishop, after which, followed
by a numerous cortége, it is borne through the city to the sound of
music and an incessant fusillade of musketry. It is then hoisted to the
summit of the spire of St. Michael, which forms the repository of St.
Martial's remains.

The procession itself is a curious and motley spectacle. So great
is the emulation in the preparation of costumes that many families
are accustomed to buy the materials and begin the work two years in
advance. In the ranks are to be seen represented all the saints both of
the Old and New Testament, the seven Maccabei, and the entire Passion,
including our Saviour, the Virgin Mary and the apostles. Twenty-four
angels carry the instruments of the Passion. "We participated in
this festival in 1820," writes the late Abbé Tesier, "and can recall
the tears, and even indignation, of the multitude when the personage
representing Our Lord fell under the weight of an immense cross." On
the same occasion four thousand pupils of the College of St. Mary
marched in line, representing the prophets, martyrs, confessors and
virgins. After them came long lines of soldiers fantastically clad in
the military costumes of the Middle Ages, and equipped with crossbows,
matchlock arquebuses and all varieties of ancient weapons, which
had been handed down in families from generation to generation to
be used on these occasions. There were in line, too, all the rulers
and magistrates of the province, and scores of religious orders and
brotherhoods to which successive centuries of Romanism had given birth.
Chief among these latter are the Penitents, a curious fraternity which
merits more than a passing mention.

Though dating from the thirteenth century in France, it was not
until 1598 that the order made its appearance in Limoges. It gained
ground there so rapidly, however, that in 1789 but one other city,
Marseilles, contained a greater number of lodges. Each lodge, to obtain
its charter, had to bind itself to rebuild some ruined church, name
some special mission of good it was to accomplish and choose some
special color for its costume. Thus at Limoges we find Black, Blue,
Gray, White, Purple, Violet and Dead-Leaf Penitents, each charged with
some special benevolent function, such as settling disputes between
alienated members of one family, escorting the condemned to the
scaffold and holding the crucifix to their lips, relieving imprisoned
debtors, and so on. People of all ages and conditions flocked to their
ranks. A unanimous election was required to obtain admission. The order
grew so wealthy and powerful that at times it even dared to oppose the
authority of the Church itself. The annual procession on Holy Thursday
called out the entire population. It took place at nightfall, the
brethren marching disguised and barefoot through the streets, holding
lighted tapers and lanterns suspended from long poles, carrying a
cross covered with crape at their head, and chanting a dirge as they
went. But by and by trouble arose, and the Penitents found themselves
in hot water. In 1742 a malefactor whom they escorted to the scaffold
managed to escape, through the aid, it was believed, of the throng
of disguised Penitents about him. Henceforward their interference in
executions was forbidden. The Revolution dealt what was practically
a deathblow to the order, for, though revived in 1804, it provoked
ridicule as out of keeping with modern ideas. The Ostension procession
of 1862 saw the six surviving lodges parade together for the last time.
The events of 1870-71 finished the work of disorganization, and to-day
the costumes and ornaments of the Penitents Noirs--who, it seems, had
survived all the others--remain as curiosities in the possession of the
last treasurer of the lodge.

The stranger at Limoges is perforce an early riser. He is aroused
from his slumbers at daybreak by a furious reveille of drum and bugle
from the numerous barracks about the city, and from that time on
bugle-practice and drum-practice hold high revel, until the despairing
visitor is obliged, in sheer self-defence, to rise, dress and stroll
out to see where all the racket comes from. He will understand it when
he learns that of the seventy thousand people in the city about him,
ten thousand are soldiers. If he would gain some idea of the number and
extent of the _casernes_ in which this good-sized army is quartered--in
fact, if he would have a view of the whole city just awakening to its
daily life--let him stroll up through one or another of the steep
streets leading to the Place d'Orsay, a hilltop park crowned with
forest trees and overlooking all Limoges. There was once a Roman arena
on this spot, but its memory now lives only in the name of an adjacent
street. If the morning be clear the view from this point is superb.
Let the spectator turn where he may, he looks over densely-crowded
housetops toward a vast amphitheatre of surrounding hills dotted with
châteaux and farms, and enclosing the circular valley or basin in the
centre of which, upon a knoll, stands the city itself. About him the
busy hum of toil is already audible. Scores of tall chimneys puffing
out smoke and flames mark the numerous porcelain-factories scattered
here and there through the city's limits. Close at hand the tapering
spire of St. Michael's, and beyond it that of St. Pierre, stand out in
clear relief against the morning sky, while farther in the distance the
cathedral looms up grand and shapely among the morning shadows rising
from the river at its base.

By this time the shops are opened, everybody is stirring, and the
visitor may as well take a stroll over to the market-place. On his
way he will pass the Palais de Justice on the Place d'Aisne and the
military club-house on the Rue Darnay, both of them elegant structures;
he will traverse a quarter where the names on the signs and the noses
on the shopkeepers' faces give an emphatic answer, so far as Limoges
is concerned, to the time-honored query, "Where, oh where, are the
Hebrew children?" he will pass through the fashionable shopping-region,
where great dry-goods stores, dedicated "Au Louvre," "À la Ville de
Paris," etc., glare at him with their enormous plateglass panes and
a wealth of fabrics within; he will remark a surprising predominance
of pastry-shops and drug-stores, though it need not necessarily be
inferred that one is the complement of the other: in some streets
he will find the sidewalks wide and well laid, in others they are
rough and painful, tapering off to nothing alongside the base of some
projecting building. If he asks a question of the shopkeepers in the
doorways, they answer him pleasantly and politely; if he scan the
faces of passers-by, he finds them bright, hopeful and good-natured.
Groups of neatly-dressed, bareheaded working-girls go chatting by: men
in blouses and slouch hats, carrying tin dinner-pails, hurry past.
Vellum-faced old women crying vegetables in the shrillest of voices;
here and there a guard of soldiers following a forage-wagon piled high
with loaves of bread two feet long; milkmen's wagons, bakers' wagons,
and an occasional patient donkey toiling up-hill with a stout country
dame and a load of cabbages in the cart behind him; sedate housewives
hurrying homeward, followed by little _bonnes_ with laden baskets on
their arms,--all tell the observer that he is in the neighborhood of
the market.

What a babel of confusion it is, this motley gathering of fruit-and
vegetable-women, seated in long rows of improvised stalls along the
paved slope, enclosed on all sides by tall buildings, which forms the
market-place! They all wear red-and-yellow head-kerchiefs, and are
chattering away for dear life. It is a recognized principle in their
code to ask any price they think they can get for their wares, but
for all that living is not costly at Limoges. Good beef and mutton
sell at eighteen cents a pound, and articles of _charcuterie_, such as
ham, sausage, _pâtés_ and _galantine_, are sold in great quantities.
Vegetables of all kinds are plentiful and cheap, and in the season
there is an abundance of pears, apples, grapes and figs. In the
autumn, too, thousands of bushels of a giant species of chestnut are
gathered and sold or shipped to other markets. Mushrooms as large
round as a dinner-plate are sold by weight, and women and children
can be seen munching them as they would crusts of bread. Wine is poor
and high-priced, for the Limousin is not a vine-growing province, and
with the recent rise in price the poorer classes have to forego the
daily litre of _vin rouge_ which their compatriots in the neighboring
Charente still consider indispensable to their health and happiness.
Looking at these market-people about him, the observer can easily see
that they are not habitual wine-drinkers. They take a little cider, a
little beer, but wine only now and then. Simplicity and frugality of
diet, in fact, mark the habits of all the people, rich and poor, of
the province. A cup of coffee on rising, a plate of soup at nine, a
substantial meal at mid-day, and another plate of soup between six and
eight in the evening, make up the bill of fare for the day.

The hotels, however, keep up the Parisian hours for meals, and as
breakfast does not come until eleven o'clock, it would be well for our
visitor to devote his remaining morning hours to the famous Ceramic
Museum, which is not far from the Place d'Orsay, and which contains the
finest collection of faïence and porcelains in the world excepting that
at the Louvre. All the principal European countries are here found
represented by specimens of their wares, but the United States, alas!
is conspicuous by its absence, notwithstanding the fact that last year
a notice was generally published throughout the American press advising
our porcelain-makers that samples, if sent by them to the United States
consular agent at Limoges, would be exhibited in the museum side by
side with the rest. In connection with the establishment a free school
for drawing and porcelain-decoration has been inaugurated by the city,
and with such success that it numbers six hundred and fifty pupils of
both sexes and all ranks of society.

After his morning stroll our visitor to Limoges will doubtless
breakfast well. At either the Boule d'Or, the Richelieu or La Paix
he cannot fail to do so, provided he furnish the appetite. There are
other hotels, some of them rejoicing in such fanciful names as "The
Golden Chariot" or "The Silver Eagle," but the three first named are
those that the arriving stranger generally hears screamed in his
ears by the runners at the railway-dépôt. The prices at either of
them, varying from a dollar and a half to two dollars per day, seem
ridiculously cheap to an American, for the bill of fare embraces an
elaborate array of courses at the table-d'hôte, and wine is included.
Carriage-hire, too; is remarkably reasonable: for a five-franc piece
one can hire for the best part of the afternoon either a one-horse
coupé or a two-horse barouche with a liveried driver. Tell the coachman
to drive you out of town anywhere to get a good view of the city. He
will touch his hat, crack his whip, and away you go. He will probably
take you past the statue of Marshal Jourdan, the Cercle de l'Union--a
splendidly-appointed private club--and so down through the Cité to the
Boulevard Pont Neuf, leading to the bridge of the same name. The view
up and down the river as you cross is extremely picturesque, the banks
ascending in steep declivities on either side. Above is the ancient
bridge of St. Étienne, and below is the equally ancient bridge of St.
Martial, each, like the Pont Neuf, leading to its faubourg beyond
the river. Under the shade of the shapely poplars lining the placid
current hundreds of laundresses are to be seen kneeling in little
wooden boxes at the water's edge, each having before her a smooth flat
stone on which she scrubs, kneads and pounds somebody's family linen.
The roadway up through the faubourg is dirty and tedious: unkempt
children are playing in the street and ill-bred dogs run out to bark as
you pass. But beyond are the loveliest of rural scenes--long, shaded
road-ways where, through the closely-aligned trees, one looks down upon
the city and the river spread like a picture beneath: here and there,
standing back from the roadside and embowered in foliage, are ancestral
châteaux, seeming to care very little for the common world about them.
The farms are models of agricultural industry and neatness. Prosperity
and thrift are written in large letters all over the cultivated fields
and well-cared-for pastures that meet the eye at every turn. Men and
women are working together among the grain or in the hay-meadows. A
turn in the road brings us to Panazol, a little hamlet with not over
twenty houses, yet with a vine-clad toy of a church, and a little shed,
New England like, adjoining it, for the convenience of the farmers
who come here to mass on Sundays. Before the doors peasant-women sit
working at their looms, and bright-faced matrons sit knitting in the
windows. The village streets are grass-grown and still, and but for
an occasional old woman, with an immense broad-brimmed straw hat on
her head and a load of fagots on her back, our carriage might dash at
breakneck speed through Panazol without fear of injuring any one.

Within a radius of a few miles there are a dozen pleasant points
for afternoon drives--Rochechouart, with its historic château; St.
Yrieix, a bright and pretty town, with a church that has a history;
St. Léonard, with its famous church, an exact model of St. Sepulchre
at Jerusalem; the abbaye of Solignac, where St. Éloi worked as a
silversmith; and Aix, farther down on the Vienne, where you can
drive down for dinner, and then return home along the river-bank by
moonlight. Either one of these trips would prove interesting: your
gorgeous driver is very communicative, and tells you all about the
owners of this place and that, what their family pedigrees are, whom
they married, how much they are worth and how much they paid per
hectare for the property.

There is a fair theatre where one can hear _Le Petit Duc, Les Cloches_
or some other popular opera sung three times a week. One sees very
few elaborately-dressed ladies in the audiences, for the city, being
an industrial one and with a large majority of its population given
to their daily labor for support, is not much wedded to fashion: it
is practical rather than worldly. The constant round of dinners,
soirées, balls and receptions which characterizes French high life in
many and even smaller cities is lacking here. The wealthier people,
as a rule, are the porcelain-manufacturers, who live in a quiet,
substantial, sensible way, eschewing the follies and fatigues of
fashionable existence. Full half of the population depends, directly
or indirectly, on the porcelain industry for its support. It was only
a hundred and thirty years ago that this industry had its birth. For
centuries before that, it is true, Limoges had been famous through all
Europe for its enamels. Bernard Palissy was a citizen of Limoges, and
Léonard Limousin was appointed "enamel-painter in ordinary" to King
Francis I. It is possible that this art was brought here from Italy by
some Venetian merchants, who in 977 built up a portion of what is now
the Faubourg St. Martial and established an extensive trade in fabrics
and spices with the Levant. But it was not until 1765 that Doctor
Darnay, a surgeon of Limoges, discovered near the neighboring village
of St. Yrieix the inexhaustible quarries of kaolin which were destined
to become a source of wealth and employment for all the surrounding
population. Like most discoverers, he failed to realize any substantial
benefits. A Bordeaux druggist, one De Villaret, managed to secure a
patent in advance of him, and poor Darnay, defeated in a suit for
damages, had to content himself with the posthumous honor of having
a street named after him in the city which has most profited by his

In 1772 the first porcelain-factory was established at Limoges by
Messrs. Massier, Fourneyra & Grellet _frères_, under the protection
of the wise and liberal intendant Turgot. It is the decoration of the
porcelain that gives it its value as well as its charm. Its manufacture
is comparatively easy and simple. The kaolin, a dry, whitish-yellow
clay, is first taken in lumps from the quarry and carried to one or
another of the numerous mills lining the Vienne, where it is ground
fine and reduced to a liquid paste closely resembling bread-dough. In
this shape it is carried in sacks to the factory, where, having been
again worked over to secure fineness and pliability, it is ready for
the moulder's or the turner's hands. Nothing can exceed the deftness
and skill with which, under the magic touch of the experienced workman,
shapeless lumps of this prepared clay are fashioned into cups, dishes,
vases and every conceivable form of the most delicate pottery. It is
so quickly done, too! One handy operative can make two hundred cups
a day. Once moulded into shape, the piece of pottery is dipped into
liquid enamel which gives it hardness and brilliancy. It receives too
the stamp of the manufacturer. It is then placed in what is called a
_gazette_ to be put into the oven to bake. The gazette is composed of
a pair of deep earthen saucers fitting tightly together and forming
a circular box, varying in dimensions according to the sizes of the
objects to be baked. The greater part of those in use are little
larger than an ordinary soup-plate. In this gazette the piece of
porcelain is hermetically sealed up, and then it goes into the oven
with thousands of other gazettes, until the great circular furnace,
twenty feet in diameter and two stories high, is packed full from side
to side and from bottom to top. Then the doors are closed, the fires
are lit, and for a period varying from thirty-four to fifty hours the
baking process goes on at a temperature of thirty-two hundred degrees
Fahrenheit. Even after the fires are extinguished the heat in the
furnace continues intense, and twelve hours more must elapse before
it subsides sufficiently to permit the workmen to enter, remove and
open the gazettes, take out the porcelains, which are now hard and
brilliant, and send them to the artists for decoration. There are in
all some seventy of these ovens in Limoges, with an average capacity of
six thousand pieces. As most of them are kept going night and day, the
reader can form some idea of the amount daily manufactured.

But thus far we have only followed the process through its homelier
stages. The decorative work, yet to come, is the most delicate as it
is the most interesting. But not every piece of porcelain that comes
out of the oven reaches the decorator's hands. Of every hundred pieces
baked, an average of twenty-five are thrown out as inferior, and the
remaining seventy-five are divided or sorted out into four grades,
known as second choice, choice, élite and special, in the average
proportion of thirty, twenty-five, fifteen and five to each class
respectively. The special is employed only for very rich decorations;
élite is recommended for best selection; the choice is for ordinary
usage; and the second choice is of such fair quality as to be
pronounced less imperfect than the best porcelain sent from China and
Japan, and specially recommended as the most economical pottery. The
price of decoration varies according to the selection of porcelain to
which it is applied. Thus, for instance, the lower grades of artists
are employed upon the second-choice porcelain, while the best painters
and decorators work upon the élite: the special is only given to
artists of the most exceptional merit. The various artists, painters
and decorators, are paid salaries which, according to the French
standard, are considered munificent, though they sound small enough
to American ears. Much of the decorating, such as flowers, birds,
vines, etc., is done by laying the paper designs upon the porcelain
and painting over them. The gilding is more laborious, and enormous
quantities of pure gold-leaf are used. The gold, once laid on, can
only become permanently part and parcel of the porcelain by being
subjected to an additional six hours' baking at a temperature of eight
hundred degrees Réaumur.

Not less important is the decoration of faïence-ware, which varies
infinitely according to the desired effect. Haviland & Co., who may
be taken as a standard, classify their faïences into six groups--viz.
cream faïences, which are thus named from their color, and which are
decorated with paintings under the enamel or with translucid enamels;
enamelled paintings, possessing all the tone, richness and variety of
oil-paintings; grand-fire fresco paintings, or exact representations
of wall frescoes, and especially adapted for panels or architectural
ornaments; gilt enamels, reproducing Chinese lac-paintings or vases of
precious stones; Limoges enamels, very similar to the ancient enamels
of Léonard Limousin; and sculptured faïences, painted either under the
enamel or in grand-fire frescoes: the figures alone are never painted
in these latter. Each piece of sculptured faïence is the model itself,
signed by the artist: not one of them is ever reproduced by moulding.
In the museum connected with the Haviland works are to be seen some
remarkably fine specimens of their faïence-wares. The Havilands,
themselves Americans, who by their enterprise and integrity reflect
credit upon their country, have done much to popularize the love for
ceramics in the New World, and the head of the house, Mr. Charles
Haviland, was worthily decorated with the ribbon of the Legion of Honor
at the close of the Paris Exposition. The firm has recently completed
the manufacture of an elaborate dinner-service for the White House at
Washington, based upon designs by a well-known American artist. Long
may that service grace the board of the first magistrate of our nation
as a souvenir and symbol of the two great republics of the world--as a
substantial evidence of what French resources, combined with American
industry, have produced from the rough and shapeless clods of clay
which so many preceding centuries have passed by unnoticed!



    "Oh, shall it be a red rose, a red rose, a red rose,
      A deep-tinted red rose?" said she.
        "In the sunny garden-closes
         How they burn, the dark-red roses!
      How they lift their glowing cups to me!

    "Oh, shall it be a blush rose, a blush rose, a blush rose,
      A dewy, dainty blush rose?" said she.
          "At its heart a flush so tender,
          With a veiled and softened splendor,
      How it droops its languid head toward me!

    "Oh, shall it be a white rose, a white rose, a white rose,
      A fair and shining white rose?" said she.
        "With its pale cheek tinted faintly,
         Like a vestal pure and saintly,
      Lo! it lights its silver lamp for me."



"THE play, the play's the thing!"--not whereby, as moody Hamlet hath
it, to catch the conscience of the king, but as a possible means
of emancipation from the galling and unprofitable conditions of a
literary career. A book which embodies months of research, the refined
outcome of scholarly labor and reflective observation, may secure a
definite and honorable place for its author, but it is not likely to
yield as much in a pecuniary way as the salary of a good clerk. Even
a successful novel which strikes the popular fancy and circulates
through many editions is only a matter of a few hundred dollars. We
look over the whole field of bookmaking and periodical-writing without
discovering one practitioner of average ability, any man with every
requisite but genius itself, who, though diligent and adaptative to
circumstances, can find in the general work of his profession the
income of an average doctor or lawyer. There is a veteran whom we are
reminded of, each of whose books has had a sale of more than five
thousand copies, while some of them have exceeded fifty thousand--which
is nearly forty-nine times more than many volumes reach--and we know
that he, with this exceptional success and by the industry of a
lifetime, has not accumulated the smallest fortune, though he has been
fertile and has lived within five thousand dollars a year. The ground
is overcrowded, the struggle for place is exhausting, and the man
who is wholly dependent on his profession for bread and butter finds
himself elbowed and pushed against, not only by competitors of his own
class, but also by many to whom literature is a recreation, a source of
distinction, or collateral to some other business, and not the obdurate
necessity it is to him.

The literary gift is too often a faculty which exists by itself, and
is not conjoined with versatility. Weary though he may be, the author
has no alternative, and must drag along in his profession, feeling
that he were better out of it, and yet that he is useless for anything
else. His future is held in the Acherontic depths of his ink-pot, and
all he is capable of winning is in solution there. He thinks of the
theatre in his despair, and may find comfort in the reflection that
one substantially-successful play brings its author more money than a
poet or historian receives for all the masterpieces of his life. Harry
Esmond mentions with pride somewhere in his history that a play of his
writing had the honor of being represented two or three times; and in
the colonel's day dramatic literature was scarcely more profitable
than other kinds of writing. Now, however, a new play, produced at a
metropolitan theatre with the elaborate mounting and excellent acting
that are customary, is considered a positive failure if it is withdrawn
at the end of a month, and it is not unusual to see two or three pieces
filling the whole season. The metropolitan successes are also wanted by
managers in other cities; and from one manuscript, about one-third the
length of an ordinary novelette, the author may derive twenty thousand
dollars or more in two or three years.

The play holds out the one possibility of a fortune which literature
without transcendent genius offers, and though the chances of winning
are known to be few, the prize is so splendid that it is tried for
by men of every intellectual calibre. The poet, the essayist, the
novelist, the newspaper editor, the newspaper critic and the newspaper
reporter, the scholar and the airy _raconteur_, have all written
something for the theatre, and visions of the auditorium filled
with a well-dressed, perfumed, smiling throng, of the lights, the
applause and the excitement, have given speed to their pens. Beyond
its profitableness the drama has another and powerful fascination for
its author. Presupposing that it is competently acted and mounted with
the exquisite taste and completeness of detail that we see at such
theatres as the Union Square in New York, the manuscript is touched as
by a magician's wand and from a collocation of words becomes a living,
visible world, and a beatific, almost deifying, consciousness of
creation fills the author as he contemplates the embodied offspring of
his brain.

The poet, the essayist and the others have written their plays,
inspired and accelerated by dreams of a sweeter success than they have
known before, and if the reader should ask what has become of them we
might answer by begging him to consult the theatrical records and find
out how many new plays by American authors have been produced during
the past ten years. The end, if not the history, of nearly all of them
is the same. They have been received by the managers with a degree of
attention measured and varied according to the positions and influences
of the persons submitting them. Some of the authors have written to
theatres praying for a hearing, and have waited in vain for an answer;
others have succeeded in getting their manuscripts into some manager's
hands, and have been promised a decision which has been put off from
month to month, until at the end of a year or so they have been glad to
recover their work, though it has not been read; a few have had their
plays accepted, and are only sanguine at the beginning of each season
to become disheartened before its close as this or that success of
London or Paris has occupied the theatre and deferred the production of
their own work, which is effectually entombed in an office-safe: these
live on wearily, ever in sight of a desired object to which they never
come nearer; and, finally, there are a limited number who, impatient of
the delays or rejected at houses where alone production would be worth
while, have withdrawn their plays and given them to secondary managers
or "stars"--a course fatal to both pecuniary and artistic success.

After many vicissitudes all the manuscripts usually come home to their
parents, who do not repeat their experiments, but, looking back on
their dead ambition, shake their heads with an air of great sagacity
when play-writing is mentioned and point ominously to a pile of leaves
in some corner of their desks. Years ago, when we told a literary
veteran who had written tragedies and other trifles for the Bowery
in its palmy days that we were engaged upon a drama of our own, he
vehemently protested against the folly. "Don't do it!" he cried. "They
will tear your heart out," referring to the managers, who certainly
deserve small credit for the way they treat the literary men who submit
work to them. Nevertheless, in all the leading theatres there is in
some part of the building an office, usually undiscoverable by the
uninitiated, where plays are actually read and sometimes accepted.
It is a small apartment guarded by an attendant, who instinctively
knows to whom the manager is "at home" and to whom he is not--who
has a welcoming smile for the critic of the big newspaper and an
impatient shrug of disparagement for the author who calls for the
twentieth time to see if his play has been read. There is a bunch
of programmes hanging from a nail in the wall, and there are proofs
of lithographic window-sheets and posters strewn upon the desks and
chairs. The newspapers are filed, and copies of the latest editions
are so profuse that the effect is more journalistic than theatrical.
But the conversation is assiduously "professional," and there is a
somewhat unusual familiarity of address among the persons present,
who call one another by their Christian names. Sometimes an actor or
actress attached to the theatre looks in, or a playwright who is in
favor, or a provincial manager, or a fashionable "man about town" who
in some occult way has obtained the _entrée_ of the managerial sanctum.
It strikes one that for an overburdened business-man the manager is
very affable and patient. This is only during his moments of leisure,
however, and when a play has to be discussed, the characters to be
"cast" or engagements to be made none but members of the staff are

Not more than a dozen original plays by Americans have been produced
at the three principal theatres of New York during the last six years.
The most notable of these have been _Pique_, by Mr. Angustin Daly, who
was his own manager; _The Banker's Daughter_, by Mr. Bronson Howard
in collaboration with Mr. A. R. Cazauran, the former an experienced
playwright, and the latter assistant manager of the theatre at
which it was produced; _The False Friend_, by Mr. Edgar Fawcett, an
established literary man; and _Conscience_, in collaboration, by Mr.
A.E. Lancaster, a critic of distinction. It is worth observation that
in each instance the author was in some measure intimate with the
theatre and possessed some knowledge of stage-effect, the requirements
and exigences of the companies for which he was writing. Literary
ability alone will not make an acting play, even when it is wedded to
the constructive faculty and dramatic instinct; and we often see a
novelist whose characters are forcibly contrasted and whose climaxes
are thrilling failing in stage-work, because he makes the fatal mistake
of supposing that it can be done by the same methods as his stories.
In a novel the author may be explanatory and analytical, telling how,
why and wherefore, while in the play he must be concise, suggestive and
synthetical, making his characters define themselves by emotion and
action rather than by words.

What we have said, perhaps, shows how many things a candidate for
dramatic honors requires to succeed. He must have literary ability
of course, and not only must he have a nervous style, but he must be
able to invent a plot of sustained interest and strong situations, and
possess the faculty of prevising the effect what he is writing will
have when seen by an audience under very different circumstances and in
very different surroundings from those of his study.

But neither the difficulties nor the limitations of the market frighten
away the aspirants. One theatre receives more than two hundred
manuscripts a year, some from persons of education and literary
training, from whom acceptable work might come, but many of them from
men and women who are wholly disqualified for any sort of literature by
the completeness of their ignorance. Border dramas, with five or six
scenes to an act, are submitted to establishments where only elegant
comedies and emotional dramas are produced, each with one scene to the
act; high-flown tragedies in blank verse come begging at the doors of
the theatre where airy musical pieces are a staple; and plays with all
parts subordinated to that of a "star" are sent in to houses which
depend on their stock companies and the carefully-balanced distribution
of characters. It is not alone orthography and syntax that many of the
people who write plays are deficient in: they lack the simple common
sense which directs the man with chickens for sale to the poulterer
and the farmer with potatoes to the grocer's. Perhaps this is why
the manager makes a wry face when a new play by an unknown hand is
mentioned to him. Such a mass of impracticable stuff is submitted to
him that he loses heart and faith in turning it over. But generally it
is turned over, and if among all the chaff one grain of wheat is found
there is rejoicing, and the author finds himself elect.

The reader is usually a member of the executive staff of the theatre,
who selects from all the manuscripts sent in those that are at all
feasible, which are then read by the manager or assistant manager,
and either rejected or held for future consideration. A few strong
situations, a novel character or a brilliant piece of dialogue, though
set in unequal surroundings, will often delay the final judgment, for
the manager is as apprehensive of throwing away a good thing as of
accepting a poor one, and if he sees a gleam of power he is reluctant
to decide upon it without cogitation. He mentally revolves the question
to see it from every point, and wonders if after some "fixing up"
the play might not prosper. Should it prosper, it would be much more
profitable to him than to the author: should it fail, it would involve
a loss of several thousand dollars and injure the reputation of his
theatre. While he is debating the matter, which is a serious one to
him, a piece may be filling his house and he may have already selected
the play to follow it. He looks over the new work at his leisure, and
invites the criticism of his principal assistants; he considers its
feasibility in reference to the peculiarities of his company, and if
there are parts which his actors cannot fill he inquires whether others
are disengaged who could fill them; he considers it in reference to the
scenic capacity of his house, and the very size of his auditorium has
some influence upon him, for what tells on a small stage often fails
on a larger one. He is cautious, and dismisses the subject for a few
weeks, perhaps to think it over again at odd moments--at his club, over
his dinner, in his _coupé_ or at his office. Meanwhile the play is
lying on his desk or in the safe, and an outraged author is consuming
himself with disappointment and bitterness, demanding an answer from
day to day and being put off so often that at last he insults the
manager and reclaims his manuscript.

But, supposing that the author is patient and lets the matter take
its necessarily tedious course, and that finally the manager accepts
the play and signs a contract for its production, it may still be
months or years before an opening can be found for it. At some time or
other a date is fixed for it, however; it is underlined in the bills
and mentioned to the critics, and the practical work of building up
the acting drama from the manuscript is now begun. One of the staff
revises the stage-directions and marks the exits and entrances of the
characters, having a diagram of the stage with its various doors before
him; and when he is finished all the "business," on the technical
completeness of which the author, especially if he is callow, has
probably flattered himself, is cut out. The phrases which are prolix or
redundant are dropped, and a character may be swept out of existence
by the stroke of a pencil or a new one added, a comedy-scene written
in to relieve the gloom of some serious business, or an element of
pathos introduced where the shadows are not deep enough. It is a
fearful ordeal for the author, but the prospect of having the curtain
lifted upon his work buoys him through it, and he discreetly keeps
his temper, though unconvinced that all the changes are for the
better. We are speaking of a tyro. When the playwright is a veteran
his stage-directions are likely to be valuable, though few plays reach
the public unaltered; and in some instances the suggestions of an
inexperienced man are serviceable.

The revised manuscript is then given to the copyist, a subordinate
actor usually, who replicates it, and alternates each page of writing
with a blank leaf, for a purpose to be explained anon. The cast is
meanwhile exercising the brains of the manager. Which member of his
company will best suit this part? and which that? As in the choice of a
piece, the soundness of his judgment is put to a severe test, and that
verisimilitude and identity between the actor and his impersonation
wherein art has its fulfilment are only attained by a critical
perspicuity which places him on a much higher plane than the mere
commercial purveyor of amusements. His opinion of the most effective
distribution of parts will probably not be shared by the actors
themselves if each member of the company has not a great opportunity
allotted to him; which of course is impossible. The vanity of human
nature is inordinately developed in the bosom of the player, who loves
to linger on the stage and to be central and preponderant. A popular
leading-man is not easily replaced, and when he feels that he is more
or less indispensable he is apt to be as arrogant as he is vain, and
begrudge his associates the attention or applause of the audience for
a moment. Even the withdrawal of a minor person is felt in a company
whose members have been drilled together for some months and whose
abilities are harmoniously balanced. But the manager is firm and at
the same time conciliatory: he is like a patient father with wayward
children, whom he controls by mild arts when despotic commands would be
ignored or combated.

The cast being decided upon, two more gentlemen are introduced into
the managerial council: one is the scene-painter and the other the
"property-man." "I want for the first act," says the manager to the
painter, "a scene in the diamond-fields of South Africa; for the
second, the exterior of an Elizabethan house; for the third, a handsome
library; and for the fourth, a conservatory. The diamond-fields must be
shown as at evening, the house and the library must be characteristic
of the home of an old and prosperous family, and the conservatory
must be as fine a 'set' as you can paint." After listening to these
instructions the painter submits a number of plates from which he
thinks he may gather a definite idea of the exact requirements
of the play: a picture from the _Illustrated London News_ or the
_Graphic_ may give a suggestion of what is wanted for the scene at
the diamond-fields; the illustrations of a work on the baronial homes
of England may include such a library and exterior as would suit; and
perhaps for the conservatory he submits a hasty water-color drawing of
his own or a design from some book on architecture. "That's the thing,"
says the manager, pointing to selections from these, and he picks out
the plates which fit his idea of what the scenes should be; and the
artist gives him an estimate of the cost of production, specifying the
quantities of lumber, canvas and paint that will be required to build
up a diamond-gully, the Elizabethan mansion and the conservatory.
Perhaps the estimate is too large, and is reduced, but the management
is apt to be over-generous rather than stinting, and more probably the
artist is instructed to prepare his models with few limitations as to

Now the property-man is consulted. The rocks that will lie about the
stage in the diamond-field scene, the cataract in the background, the
implements of the miners, the tents and the wagons, the furniture in
the library scene and all the appurtenances of the conservatory, are
to be made or procured by him and disposed of on the stage before
the performance begins. The rocks are to be of papier-mâché, and the
cataract is to be simulated by a revolving drum of tinsel or glass
beads with a strong light upon it. It is his business to construct them
and the artist's to paint them. Every article used on the stage is in
the property-man's charge. The crowns of kings, the cross of Richelieu,
the whip of Tony Lumpkin, the bleached forehead of Yorick, the bell
which the victorious hero strikes before having the discomfited villain
shown to the door, and the fat purse with its crackling bank-notes
and jingling coin which the honest but virtuous clerk refuses in the
face of temptation,--all belong to the property-man's department. The
demands on his ingenuity and research take him into every kind of
shop in every quarter of the city. He has dealings with ironmongers,
milliners, upholsterers and merchants of curios. The magnificent and
costly suite of carved oak in the library--scene, which is not veneer
but substantial furniture, and the most trivial objects--a handbag or
a hat-rack, perhaps a baby for some "side-splitting" farce, whatever
the play calls for--he must secure and put, night after night, in
the exact place which the stage-directions have prescribed. Each new
play requires, of course, some new articles, and the accumulated
stock is uniquely various from which the accoutrements of princes and
potentates, beggars and nobles, soldiers and lackeys, priests and
highwaymen, the riotously anachronistic material of a fancy-dress ball,
may be gathered.

The scene-painter is provided at the preliminary consultation with a
"scene-plot," wherein the exits and entrances, the doors, windows and
other openings necessary in the action of the play, are specified:
at the same time a "property-plot" is handed to the property-man,
enumerating the articles involved in the action; and we cannot better
illustrate the diversified character which the latter sometimes have
than by quoting from the plot of _French Flats_, which was produced in
New York last season. In the first act the property-man is required to
provide a double step-ladder, a long low trunk, a lady's hatbox with
a hat in it, a cane and an umbrella, a very large basket filled with
china and crockery, a Saratoga trunk, a bundle of clothes tied up in
a sheet, upholsterers' tools, a roll of carpet and "the portrait of a
female with a hole through the eye." For the same act he also has to
provide "a crash of wood and a noise outside," a very large bouquet
for Mariette, two vials for Vallay, a law-book for Bonnay, a comb and
curling-iron for Martin, a switch of hair and a box of pills. Among
the properties required in the second act are two pianos, objects of
_virtù_, a broom for the Baroness, tongs and a tray for Vallay, a photo
album, two small combs for Riffardini the tenor, a feather-duster,
French bank-notes and two Catalan knives for the Marquis. The third
act requires large blue spectacles for Pluchard, a paper cap for
the painter, paint-brushes and paint-can, a newspaper for Billardo,
"crockery to break," plenty of writing-materials and money for
Billardo; while the fourth act, the scene of which is the parlor of the
tenor, requires bric-à-brac, a hand-glass on the table, musical parts,
newspapers, a tuning-fork, a wig and beard, a whip for the Marquis,
and several wreaths of laurel. As we have said, each article has an
appointed place in which it must be put by the property-man, and we all
know the embarrassing consequences of any negligence of his, as when
the leading actor sits at a table to sign away his birthright and can
find neither the pen nor the ink which the property-plot calls for.

One other person has to be considered in mounting the play, and
that is the machinist, who builds up the framework of the scene and
constructs the mechanical appurtenances, such as the flight of steps
down the rocks in the diamond-gully, the galleries in the library, the
balustrade in the conservatory, and all the doors and windows. The
artist, the property-man, and the machinist are together the architects
of the drama, and when they have been fully instructed--when the artist
has his plot, the property-man his, and the machinist his, which is the
same as that of the painter, and when the painter's models have been
approved by the manager--the actors are called to hear the play read.
A word in parenthesis is necessary here as to what the scene-painter's
models are, for the term is misleading. He has a small stage, upon
which he paints and sets each scene exactly as it is to appear on the
larger one, except that it is on the reduced scale of half an inch or
less to the foot of actual space; and the miniature, which is called
a model, serves to guide him in his work and to give the manager a
preliminary glimpse of what the finished scene will be.

Somewhere against the wall in that mysterious precinct which in other
days attracted the wits and gallants of the hour, who met and exchanged
familiarities with the players that were not always sweet, and which in
this better epoch is reserved for the use of the persons for whom it is
intended,--somewhere in the "green-room," where the actors gossip, or
put the finishing touch to the rouge and pencillings on their faces,
or adjust their costumes, or rehearse their parts while waiting to
be summoned before the audience, there hangs a board or a glass case
in which the official notices of the management are exhibited; and
one day a written slip is pinned or pasted in it which contains these
words: "Company called for _A Lame Excuse_ at 10 A.M. Monday," _A Lame
Excuse_ being the supposititious name of the new play. There have been
rumors of "something underlined" among the actors already, and when
the call is made the nature of the work, who of the company will be
required in it, what parts there are, and the probabilities of success,
are discussed with much volubility. Should the author be a beginner
whose connections with the stage have hitherto been impersonal, and
who yet has had that desire to affiliate with its practitioners which
belongs to adolescence and inexperience, he now has an opportunity to
acquaint himself with as many as he will care about knowing. _One_
introduction puts him on affable terms with a crowd of "professionals"
connected and unconnected with the theatre at which his play is to
be produced, and before long he is _en camarade_ with various little
cliques that gather around the small tables of bier-saloons, cafés and
club-houses after theatre hours. Between the first call and the reading
particularly he is sought and questioned as to the characteristics
of his play. The leading lady, who is pretty and cultivated, sends
him an invitation to call upon her, and receives him with flattering
attentions when he appears. The leading man invites him to a nice
little dinner. He has cocktails with the low comedian, lunch with the
"eccentric comedy lead" and oysters (late at night perhaps) with the
soubrette. His unprofessional acquaintances should also be mentioned,
for they take many pains to be remembered. Young Potter, who is athirst
for notoriety, and who, with maledictions in his contemptible little
heart and fulsome compliments at his tongue's end, will cringe before
any man who happens to have the public by the ear, trusts that our
author is not offended by anything he has written in the obscure little
paper with which he is connected. Bludgeon, who is such a hypocrite
that his unusually large nose is like a partition-wall between the
smiles that he shows and the scowls that he conceals, slaps the author
on the back and with effusive goodwill congratulates him, and declares
that nobody could be worthier of success, though in reality Bludgeon
detests him, believes the management is going to the dogs, and is
already endeavoring to invent biting phrases for his criticism. The
potentialities of the new playwright bring him innumerable offers of
services and pledges of cordiality. If he is not wise the promise of
success will intoxicate him by its fumes before the cup that contains
the fruition reaches his lips, and it may be well for him if he is not
over-confident, for the draught may prove bitter enough.

On the morning appointed the company assemble in the green-room,
sauntering in with unbusiness-like irregularity and addressing one
another with that familiarity of which we have before spoken. There
is a good deal of banter and some scolding. The author grasps each
member of the company by the hand as they enter: he is pleading and
ingratiating in his manner, and after some delay he sits at a small
table and begins to read his manuscript, or if he is too nervous the
manager or the assistant manager reads it, and he scans the faces of
the actors with a touching desire to find some responsive thrill
as his best points are reached and passed. A faint smile of the low
comedian as a grotesque line is read, a murmur of the leading lady at
some climacteric phrase of the heroine's, or an ejaculated measure of
applause from the leading man over some strong emotion in the principal
part, yields gladness to him--he foresees how much stronger they will
be spoken in character with dramatic enunciation--and as the lines
which he has thought effective fall unnoticed a gloomy apprehension
possesses him. At the end of the reading there is an interchange of
civilities, a private chat between the manager and the author, and the
little green-room, which has the mildewed appearance of a lodging-house
parlor from which the sun is shut out like a conspirator, is left to
the ghosts that float in the empty spaces of a theatre during the

Soon afterward the cast is announced, and then the unreasonable desire
to be central and preponderant, to fill the play with himself, that
affects the best of actors as well as the poorest, leads to a turmoil
which is only quieted by the diplomacy which is indispensable in
holding together the jealous elements of a stock company, wherein
pre-eminence in individual branches must be subordinate to the
maintenance of a general excellence. At the same time that the cast
is announced each actor is provided with his part and the cues which
precede each of his speeches, copied from the manuscript. The first
rehearsal is "with parts"--that is to say, the company are allowed to
read the lines from the copies given to them--and while this is in
progress the manager has the complete play with the alternate blank
pages before him, upon which he writes whatever alterations seem
desirable; and already, though none of the accessories are used, the
preliminary exercise, so to speak, shows that some speeches which
have seemed striking in the reading do not "go" well when spoken by
the actor. This rehearsal "with parts" is amusingly incongruous to
the spectator. The leading actor reads in an ordinary conversational
tone, "My heart is filled with a hatred which checks my utterance, and
though you see me now penniless, trodden upon and in these rags, Fate
may have in store for me that which will make you humble before me;"
while, instead of being at all impoverished or threadbare the leading
actor is dressed in a fashionable walking-suit and has every appearance
of prosperity. Again, the leading lady sits with complete indifference
in a chair and swings her parasol and chats with her neighbor while
one of the gentlemen opposite to her reads a declaration of love in a
sing-song voice from a roll of paper in his hand. Another member of the
company has the lines, "Here for centuries the Mordaunts have lived
the simple and honorable lives of English country gentlemen; here they
have been born; here they have died; and among them all not one of
them has ever done aught mean or base. Here, in this grand old hall,
a reputation has been built which the proudest of nobles might envy;"
and should the spectator, following the wave of the actor's hand, look
for the hall to which the speech refers, he would only discover the
stage before him, with no scene set upon it, with the wings and the
"flats" stacked up at the rear, the company gathered in the centre, and
a few gas-jets paled by the rays of daylight issuing from a yellowish
window. The heroine at another point, wandering, as the lines suppose,
about the ample gardens of the Elizabethan house at twilight, bids her
lover come and hear the soft echoes of the cuckoo, but it is only the
knocking of the machinist's hammer and the voices of the property-man
and the scene-painter, who are working in the "flies" high above the
proscenium, that are audible, and not the whistle of a bird. The
incongruity which amuses the stranger to the theatrical arcana is
unnoticed by the actors, whose profession is made up of anomalies.

When a play has been actually rehearsed and all the arrangements have
been made for painting the scenery and procuring the properties for
it, the manager is not likely to abandon it: his self-interest commits
him to it, and the author may usually feel assured that at last his
work will be seen by the public. But so difficult is it to judge from
the reading of the manuscript what the effect will be when the lines
are distributed and spoken by many different voices that more than
once an experienced manager has found to his cost, at a second or
third rehearsal, that some play which has gone thus far in preparation
will not do. The author is very much to be pitied in such a case: the
disappointment is not an ordinary one. The first rehearsal of _A Lame
Excuse_ confirms the manager's favorable opinion of it, however, and a
few days later another is called "without parts;" that is, the actors
are expected to have learned what they have to say. The rehearsals are
then continued from time to time, and at each something is added in
gesture, tone or movement which strengthens the representation. The
toil, perseverance and discipline which are entailed cannot be imagined
by one who has not traced the progress of a new play at such a theatre
as the Union Square. Whenever it seems that the most has not been made
of a line or a situation it is repeated again and again. The "business"
is gradually improved, and the author sees the company working with
greater fluency at each of the twenty or more rehearsals which are
given. Somewhere about the eighteenth rehearsal a demand is made upon
the artist, and he promises to have the scenery ready in a few days.

The date of production is now announced: the actors don their costumes,
and the manager becomes nervous and excitable. On the first night a
brilliant crowd fills the theatre to the doors. There is a murmur of
interest and curiosity. The curtain is lifted, and, seated in a small
box invisible from the auditorium, but overlooking the whole stage,
are the manager and the author, both of whom are overwrought with
excitement. A member of the staff is seated in the orchestra, where
he can survey the house and observe how the audience is affected. At
the end of the first act this useful person announces a success to the
manager, who has already been reassured by the applause. Through the
second act the applause is louder, and when the third act is ended
there is a spontaneous call for the author, who, flushed and happy,
steps before the footlights. And here we will leave him, trusting that
this night relieves him of some literary drudgery, and that Bludgeon
and Potter and better critics will treat him kindly and fairly.



It was a long and arduous journey that lay before her: unknown
difficulties and adventures were to be encountered, but urgent family
considerations forced Helen Gerard to leave her home in the South, and
her brother who was engaged in the service of the Confederacy, and, to
make her way through the enemy's lines to New York. She left Mobile on
the evening-train for Meridian, Mississippi, after taking an affecting
farewell of her brother, whom she never spoke to again. As they stood
on the platform of the railway-station, waiting for the hour of
departure, she vowed at his earnest solicitation, and out of the depth
of her affection, that never, under any possible circumstances, would
she be induced to take the oath of allegiance to the Federal government.

It was three o'clock in the morning when the train reached Meridian,
and Miss Gerard was guided by the feeble light of a smoky lantern to a
dilapidated inn miscalled an hotel. She was shown to an apartment the
darkness of which was scarcely relieved by a smouldering pine-brand
in the fireplace, a mere flickering, expiring glimmer. Forlorn and
exhausted, Helen hastily threw off part of her clothing and crept into
a spacious bed; which she had scarcely done when the room was left in
total darkness. The boisterous breakfast-bell awoke her in the gray of
an October morning, and at the same time aroused her to the horrified
consciousness that she had a bedfellow. Be it said, to the credit of
the house, that it was a woman, as Helen was immediately assured by the
voice of the stranger inquiring whether Miss Gerard was to leave on an
early train. Hastily catching her breath, Helen replied, "Yes."

"Then you cannot make your toilet and take your breakfast too quickly,"
said the woman.

Springing to her feet and hastily adjusting the rich masses of curls
that rippled over her shoulders to her waist, Miss Gerard was able to
catch the morning-train to Jackson, Mississippi, crossing Pearl River
on a pontoon-bridge. In a nondescript vehicle between a carriage and
a cart she climbed the sandy hill on which Jackson is situated, and
was soon established in a moderately good boarding-house. Both here
and elsewhere during her journey she bore herself in such manner as to
convey little idea of her actual circumstances, partly to elude any
suspicion that she carried concealed on her person four bags of gold to
defray the expenses of her journey to New York.

On the morning of the sixth day Mr. Firth, the guide whom Miss Gerard's
brother had sent to pilot her through the lines, arrived at Jackson.
He was a Scotchman by birth, although long a resident in the South,
and was between fifty and sixty years of age: his beard and locks were
sprinkled with gray; under bushy eyebrows his keen eyes flashed with
intelligence and indicated decision and reserve; but the gravity of
his features showed the imprint of perpetual sadness. Heavily built
and athletic, he was withal a handsome and very noticeable man. At
this time Mr. Firth was in the secret service of President Davis, but
exactly in what department Helen could not learn.

Giving her his hand with a hearty, honest grasp, Mr. Firth announced
himself to Miss Gerard as the guide her brother had appointed by
telegraph to conduct her to the Mississippi. He requested her to have
her small trunk ready to forward at once by army transportation,
stating that she would find it at the destined point on the river, and
that as soon as she herself was ready they would start. In less than
an hour she was prepared, and seating herself in a low, old-fashioned
country vehicle drawn by one horse, they soon left Jackson in the

All that day they journeyed through rough, untrodden forests. Often
they were forced to ford streams which came up to the box of the wagon
and obliged the travellers to lift their feet on the seat to escape a
ducking. Between one and two in the morning they reached Raymond, and
found a hospitable welcome in the house of a Mr. Moore on the edge of
the town.

Although the hour was so unseasonable, a warm supper was at once
prepared for the weary travellers. On the following morning Mr. Firth
informed Helen that he should leave her in those quarters for four
days while he went away on business of the secret service. But instead
of four days, three weeks had passed before he returned. Early on the
morning following his arrival they were up and prepared to start,
provided by their hospitable friends with lunches of cornbread and
meat stowed in the pouches of the saddles, as for the future they were
to journey on horseback; and Miss Gerard was also furnished with a
black skirt of Mrs. Moore's remodelled into a riding-habit. With eyes
swimming in tears Helen bade farewell to those who, though strangers,
had welcomed her as a friend, and with downcast heads, under the rays
of the hot morning sun, the travellers rode away, prepared to penetrate
the tangled forests of Mississippi. But first they crossed the clearing
memorable as the battle-field of Raymond, fought over when General Grant
was making his march on Vicksburg. The traces of the conflict that
terminated so sadly for the Confederate States were still everywhere
visible, and the trees showed abundant signs of the hailstorm of war
which had swept over them. Little thought Helen as she rode over those
trampled fields that her fate was mysteriously linked with one who had
bravely borne himself in that battle, and whose face she had not yet
seen, while here it was that, unknown to her, his destiny first crossed
her life.

During the daytime the travellers made their way through the forests
by compass, ignoring roads and paths and avoiding all traces of
civilization. Helen now found it of inestimable service to her that
from childhood she had been a thoroughly-accomplished and enthusiastic
horsewoman. As they forced their way through the densely-woven brake
and underwood, shreds of her riding-habit were left on the logs, trees
and under-brush which they were compelled to jump, until actually
nothing was left of it but the binding and the pocket; and her
under-dress being now too short to protect her ankles, she soon saw
her stockings dashed with blood from the rude scratches made by the
merciless twigs and thorns.

Hunger and thirst at last overtook the travellers, but before they
could find a clear brook out of which to drink it was three o'clock
in the afternoon. After feeding the horses and resting an hour they
journeyed on till midnight, when, wellnigh exhausted, they halted in
the gleam of a pale moon under a venerable oak tree on the brow of
a hill at whose foot murmured a stream lazily waiting to be their
lavatory at daybreak.

A dwelling of some sort was indistinctly visible in the distance, and
the guide, to sound the character of the inmates, proceeded thither
on the plea of asking for a match. But their manner was so distant
and inhospitable that his suspicions were aroused, and he deemed it
advisable to camp out for the night under the shelter of the oak tree.
With Mr. Firth's army-cloak so adjusted as to serve her both for
covering and pillow, Helen slept without waking until dawn, while her
faithful guide kept half an eye open and slept but little. At daybreak
they bathed their faces in the creek and breakfasted on the mossy
banks, while the horses champed their oats under the breezy oak.

The travellers now followed a course at right angles to that of the
preceding days, heading directly for the Mississippi River. But when
noon-time arrived, and, half famished, they looked to their pouches for
refreshment, they found only a gaping emptiness, which compelled them
to stop at the first house and buy some pones and raw bacon. Helen was
obliged to eat even this frugal and not wholly palatable fare in the
saddle, for Mr. Firth urged the necessity of unremitting travel, having
a certain point in the plan he had laid out which must be reached that
night. This was a sparse, uncanny settlement of two or three shanties
occupied by a disreputable set of squatters who bore a very bad name.
The most important dwelling was a wayside dram-shop, called, in local
vernacular, a "coffee-house." Before alighting Mr. Firth cautioned Miss
Gerard to look well to the door of her chamber, to nerve her courage,
and on no account to enter into conversation with any of the inmates.
At the same time he handed her one of his revolvers to lay under her

Passing at once through a dusky, noisome hall and up a steep flight
of stairs under the guidance of a heavily-bearded ruffian whose
appearance boded no good, Helen reached the room she was to occupy. It
was separated from the adjoining apartment only by a partition of thin
boards full of seams and cracks. But she was too much fatigued by the
exhausting ride of two days to lie awake long worrying over possible
dangers, and, throwing herself on the rough pallet in her clothing, she
was soon fast asleep. She was summoned at dawn by her trusty guide,
who was so impressed with the dangerous character of the house that
he would not allow her to eat before mounting, or even to be seen by
the men who were tarrying there. Leading her at once to the stable, he
hastily saddled the horses and urged her away while the gray light was
still so faint they could hardly distinguish one object from another.
Helen took a scanty breakfast in the saddle--a meagre preparation for
the perils and hardships that must be encountered before another sun
should set. At the next settlement fresh horses were procured, and a
man engaged to return to Raymond with the jaded steeds they had ridden
thus far. They were informed that several miles in advance there had
been a great freshet which had swollen all the streams and made them
wellnigh impassable. But time was pressing, and, finding that Miss
Gerard was willing to face the rushing waters, the guide decided to go

After fifteen miles of hard riding they found themselves on the edge of
a wide stream dangerously swollen and rushing by with great turbulence,
shooting roots and branches of dislodged trees along its seething
current. But this was no time for hesitation or dismay. Hugging her
horse's neck and laying herself length-wise along his back, the heroic
girl urged him into the stream and gave him the rein. The horses swam
gallantly, and succeeded in making a landing on the other side far
below where they had plunged in. Struck by rushing logs, sometimes
almost hurled from her precarious seat, Helen preserved her presence of
mind, nor was she disheartened by the thrilling peril she had escaped,
but with the same fortitude guided her horse across several other
dangerous streams before night.

Twilight found the travellers entering the plantation of Mr. Clayton,
a domain so vast in extent that several miles had yet to be traversed
in the gloom of starlight before the mansion was reached. On alighting
Helen expected to pass only one night, or at most a day and a night,
enjoying the warm welcome of these kind people, but was told, to her
dismay, that the freshets had so swollen the streams that further
advance would be impossible for some days. Finding that delay would be
disadvantageous to the service upon which he was engaged, Mr. Firth
announced to Miss Gerard that he must reluctantly leave her there, but
would return for her when the fords became more passable. Being a man
of action, no sooner had he informed her of his determination on the
following afternoon than he ordered his horse to be saddled and led up.
To Helen's surprise, her horse was also brought to the house saddled
and bridled, and Mr. Firth gracefully invited her to accompany him a
short distance--a proposal which she gladly accepted, because it was
not without a slight regret that she felt that the only one in the
neighborhood in whom she could confide was about to leave her among
total strangers.

In a moment Miss Gerard had donned her riding-habit and was ready to
mount. But on reaching the portico her guide strangely lingered, and
showed a hesitation altogether unusual in his ordinarily abrupt though
courteous manner. Taking her hand in both of his, he looked down into
her eyes with a meaning which spoke more than words. Then for the first
time Helen realized with a shock that burned her cheeks and made her
tremble that he who had been her guide through such varying scenes for
weeks past now craved the boon of filling the same calling for her
through life.

With a few tenderly-spoken words Mr. Firth made known the love that had
been aroused in his bosom by the steadfast heroism of the beautiful
girl whom it had been his lot to learn to appreciate under such
peculiar circumstances. Helen was quite overcome by the singular and
altogether unforeseen turn which affairs had so suddenly taken, while
she was at a loss to know what action of hers might have led him to
mistake expressions of gratitude for utterances of a love which she
did not feel; and difficult indeed was her present task, requiring
even more than the usual tact which so rarely failed her in critical
moments, to explain the delicate distinction between love and esteem.
After making her real sentiments known, Miss Gerard, fearing further to
wound the feelings of a man for whom she entertained so high a respect,
consented to ride a short distance with him, and with the golden light
of the setting sun glinting among the trees they were soon in the
forest once more.

On the way Mr. Firth explained the cause of his habitual melancholy,
giving her certain details of a tragical career which are now buried
with him in the grave where he has lain for these twelve years past.
When they had reached a spot some five miles distant from the house
where two roads met and divided, "Here we part," Mr. Firth said; and
Helen watched his receding form in the golden haze of the setting sun
as he passed from her sight for ever.

Miss Gerard returned alone to linger among strangers, upon whose
hospitality she must be dependent until the floods should subside and
a favorable occasion present itself for her to proceed on her journey.
These excellent people treated the fair girl so singularly entrusted
to their care less as a guest than as a member of the family: they
lent her all the clothing she required and took her out daily on their
hunting-parties. But, pleasantly as the time seemed to pass, she was
impatient for the opportunity to continue her journey, and at last it
occurred in the week after the New Year. A proposition was made to her
by the widowed sister of Judge Clayton, whose husband had died suddenly
in New Orleans, leaving his affairs in such a condition that her
presence was required in that city. It was suggested to Helen that if
she would chaperon the mother, daughter and little son across the lines
they would provide the mules and vehicle necessary for the journey. She
adopted the plan without hesitation, little thinking when she did so
that she was accepting troubles greater than any she had yet braved.

Everything was speedily arranged for departure on the following
morning. A plain country-wagon with board seats, drawn by two mules
driven by a negro, held the Clayton family of three, while Helen
accompanied them in the saddle. They passed over roads of the roughest
description, in parts almost impassable on account of the recent
storms, but Helen often shortened the distance when they came to a
curve in the road by urging her fleet horse by a short cut across the

Much fatigued, the party lodged comfortably that night with an
acquaintance of the Claytons. Similar hardships the following day
brought our travellers at noon to the banks of the Bayou River,
opposite Port Gibson. The bridge had been burned by the Confederates
on the approach of Grant's army, and a few small wherries now offered
the only available means for crossing to the town. So small, indeed,
were these boats that the wagon had to be taken apart in order to be
ferried over, the body being placed in one boat, the wheels in another
and a mule in a third. And thus, one by one, women and child, driver,
mules and wagon, were taken across. Here once more Miss Gerard came
into unconscious contact with one already alluded to whose future was
mysteriously interwoven with hers.

Within five miles of Rodney, Helen, happening to precede the wagon,
was suddenly confronted by a scout who cried, "Halt! Whither?" She
responded, "To Rodney," and with rare presence of mind added the
ambiguous language of her old guide, Mr. Firth, in the hope of
repeating the password, which in reality was unknown to her; and before
the scout had time to interrogate her further she asked him in whose
command he was, if there was any news, and trusted that he would be
_vigilant_ in his duties. At once he respectfully touched his hat and
turned to halt the party in the wagon, which was now just coming up.
Helen, turning in the saddle, cried out to Mrs. Clayton, "Mother, I'm
glad to see you safe thus far on our journey, as we are within sight of
Rodney." Completely deceived by this ruse, the scout permitted them to
pass on without further parley. In another hour the party stood on the
brow of the steep bluff overlooking Rodney, up whose slope the climbing
roofs of that city are built, and Helen for the first time gazed on the
waters of the Mississippi.

The following morning she went to the bank of the river and,
sentinel-like, awaited the welcome appearance of a gunboat. Soon
she was rewarded by discovering one approaching. Vigorously waving
her handkerchief, she had the gratification of seeing her signal
recognized. A small boat was lowered, and in charge of an officer in
Federal uniform was rowed toward the young girl on the shore. After
the usual salutations Helen made her wishes known, and was awaiting
the officer's reply when she was most unexpectedly interrupted by the
voice of Mrs. Clayton, who had come behind her unobserved, and now,
with unmeasured volubility, detailed all her grievances to the officer,
whether domestic or otherwise, adding a long tirade of abuse, and even
attributing the loss of her husband, who had died peacefully in his
bed, to Federal interference.

When the old lady stopped to take breath the officer, astounded at
such impudence and folly on the part of one who was looking to him for
assistance, said, "Ladies, I cannot do anything for you," and ordered
the crew to row back to the gunboat. In silence Miss Gerard and her
companion walked back to the hotel. Silence was judicious in a strange
place in time of war, and so Helen gave no expression to her indignant
feelings until they had reached their apartment. She then locked the
door, and, quietly laying aside her hat and gloves, seated herself on
a trunk. Thoroughly aroused, she opened her batteries on Mrs. Clayton,
assuring her in forcible terms that a repetition of such unseasonable
loquacity during their journey would cost her her liberty. She turned
to the daughter and made an appeal to her for aid in the matter. At
that moment a tap at the door was heard, and she turned her wrath
to smiles, for on opening the door her long-lost trunk stood before
her. How or whence it came she was not able to learn, but its welcome
appearance was like the magic apparition in a fairy-tale.

Many days were passed on the river-bank watching vainly for a
steamboat. Helen decided that a dormer-window in the attic of the
hotel would be a better point of observation, and with field-glass
in hand spent many weary days before she saw the smoke of a steamer
puffing down the river. While it was making the bend in the river our
anxious heroine hastened to the bank and once more floated her white
handkerchief in the air. In her simple dress of homespun and palmetto
hat she was indeed an object to gratify the eye of an artist or a poet.
The signal was seen, and this time the gunboat herself bore down and
came alongside the bank. After the plank had been thrown out an officer
stepped on shore and inquired what was wanted. Helen replied, "A New
Yorker desires to return to her home after an absence of some years.
Family matters alone make it imperative she should do so."

"Are you alone?" he asked.

"No: Judge Clayton's widow and family accompany me to New Orleans. I
wish from your captain transportation for us all to that point."

"I will speak to the commanding officer: wait for me here," he replied.

"One moment," exclaimed Helen: "what is the name of your commander? and
where from?"

"Captain Belknap of New York," he answered.

In another moment the officer returned with orders to escort Miss
Gerard on board. She was led into the presence of a gentleman six feet
tall and of herculean frame, with light hair, blue eyes and a face that
wore an expression as gentle as that of a woman. Glancing at the lady
from head to foot, Captain Belknap asked how so young and interesting a
woman could be so far from her mother.

"A sister's love carried me away, and a daughter's love takes me back,"
she replied.

"Are you travelling with the baggage of a Saratoga belle?" he asked.

"No. Such might be the case if I were the belle. My baggage consists of
two trunks for four persons."

"I fear, my young miss, I can render you no assistance," he said. Then
ensued a silence which carried despair to her heart. "I might consent
to take you," he resumed, "but the taking of a Confederate family is
another matter."

"Unless they can accompany me I refuse any such offer," said Helen.

She turned to leave him, when he said, looking at his watch at the same
time, "In fifteen minutes my plank will be taken in and my boat headed
up the river: if you and your friends are here within that time I will
take you on board."

With a hearty "Thank you," Helen fairly ran from his presence, down the
plank and through the streets up to the hotel with the fleetness of a
gazelle. On the way she encountered a wheelbarrow drawn by a decrepit
old negro. Accosting him hastily, she exclaimed, "Here, uncle: I'll
give you five dollars for the use of your wheelbarrow for ten minutes,"
and, snatching the handles out of his grasp, left him to follow as best
he could, for she far outran him. Rushing into Mrs. Clayton's room,
in a few hurried words she gave the news. She had kept her own trunk
in readiness for departure at a moment's notice, and had advised the
Claytons to do the same--advice they had taken care to neglect, as
she now discovered to her dismay. While Miss Adèle gathered the loose
articles about the room and jammed them into their trunk, Helen seized
the street-garments of the mother and hurriedly threw them on the old
lady. By this time the negro had arrived, breathless with astonishment.

"Here, uncle," exclaimed Miss Gerard: "catch hold of the other handle
of this trunk while I take this one--and you, my friends, follow;" and
in the next instant she was wheeling the barrow and both trunks through
the streets in the van of the party, watched by a gaping crowd, with
the dogs barking at her heels and the old man bringing up the rear.

As they reached the bank the whistle of the steamer was blown for
departure. While the crew hastily carried the trunks on board the negro
hove in sight. Helen waved the five-dollar Confederate note over her
head, which made the old fellow quicken his tottering steps, and he
tumbled ahead as if in the last efforts of Nature, his short gray hair
blowing like an aureole around his head.

After Miss Gerard and Mrs. Clayton had introduced each other to the
captain he courteously invited them to lay aside their bonnets and make
themselves as comfortable as his limited accommodations would allow.
When he left them to give some orders on deck Helen took advantage of
his absence to admonish the old lady to maintain a discreet control
over her tongue. When the captain returned he found Helen looking at
the pictures hanging on the panels. Coming to her side, he kindly
explained some of them which represented scenes in his life, and by
the frank courtesy of his manner soon relieved her of whatever fears
she might have had as to the treatment they were to receive on board a
United States ship of war.

While they were thus engaged a waiter spread the table for supper,
and, singular as it may seem for one of her social position, Helen
questioned in her mind whether a place would be assigned to her at the
captain's table or elsewhere; but those were times of war, and the
heavy pressure of the mailed hand of the North on the South made the
people of the latter section imagine that discourtesy toward ladies
would characterize the conduct of Northern sailors and soldiers.
Hence, Miss Gerard, as she cast furtive glances toward the table,
could not help questioning whether the four additional covers were for
the officers or for herself and her companions. Meeting the eyes of
Mrs. Clayton, Helen perceived the old lady was also revolving similar
thoughts in her mind. Could it be that enemies would be permitted to
eat with so high a functionary?

Their suspense was soon relieved by supper being announced. Captain
Belknap gallantly invited Miss Gerard to preside as his _vis-à-vis_,
Mrs. Clayton being seated on his right and the daughter and son on
his left. A delicate meal on white china and silver gave zest to the
appetite of our heroine, while her mind reverted to the dry bread and
raw bacon she had so recently eaten in the saddle, not without a relish.

Four delightful days passed rapidly while they glided over the waters
of the Mississippi. Then, as the gunboat was patrolling to and fro,
watching the banks of the river, our party had to be transferred to a
packet bound for New Orleans, and were told to be in readiness, as one
was only three miles distant.

"The packet is alongside, ladies: are you ready?" inquired Captain
Belknap, coming into the cabin. "I see you are," he added, and turning
to Miss Gerard, "You remain while I escort the others on board." And
she was left standing in a dazed condition, listening to the footsteps
passing away as in funeral procession to her further hopes, wondering
what new skeleton she was now to encounter. Could there be a conspiracy
against her liberty concealed under this semblance of hospitality? and
would her companions thus selfishly abandon her without so much as an

These gloomy forebodings were not lessened when Captain Belknap
returned to her side and with an authoritative voice requested Miss
Gerard to show him every letter or document she might have about her
person, for he had already searched her trunk and found none, and the
presumption was she must have them concealed in her dress. Without a
word she handed him a package of unsealed letters from her pocket. He
opened one and a bit of tape dropped to the floor. Picking it up, he
commenced reading the letter, but before finishing it replaced the
tape and opened another, when a Quaker-colored scrap of silk, the size
of a dollar-bill, pasted at one end to the paper, met his scrutiny.
Lifting the other end of the silk, he glanced over the first few lines
of a closely-filled sheet of foolscap and impatiently exclaimed,
"Are all these letters of the same character--dress-patterns and

Helen answered, "No doubt, although I have not read them."

Returning her the letters, he said, "I shall be compelled to detain
you, while I have given your friends a pass to their destination."

Tears fell fast from her eyes as she turned them from his gaze and
realized her helplessness and the futility of all she had thus far
endured. For the first time her courage failed her. After an interval
of several moments she looked up and discovered the packet still
alongside; which astonishing fact caused her to inquire why it lingered.

Evidently, Captain Belknap thought this circumstance would have evaded
even her keen observation. Laying his hand gently on her shoulder and
looking kindly into her tear-streaming eyes, he said with a quiet
laugh, "I'm only joking with you, and yet in my dreary sailor life the
past four days have been too happy for me willingly to part with you."

"Please let me go! please let me go!" she pleaded.

"Why, certainly," he replied, "though I shall miss you more than you
can ever know. Forgive me for this joke and let us part friends."

Wiping away the tears, which had given place to smiles, she laid both
her hands in his and said, "I will not only forgive, but bless you for
your kindness."

Drawing her hand into his arm, the captain took her on board the packet
and gave her a pass to New Orleans.

The passage down the river occupied several days, the boat touching
at only a few points. The little party from Rodney, still under the
direction of Miss Gerard, who never relaxed the discipline of her
authority, were chiefly dependent on each other for society: for
obvious reasons she was reluctant to form acquaintances on board, and
so great was her vigilance that whenever Mrs. Clayton's voice became
too animated or her language of a nature to attract suspicion she would
pinch her arm with a severity that could not be mistaken.

One evening the purser, Mr. Anderson, came to Miss Gerard with a book
in his hand. After introducing himself he remarked that he had with
him a most entertaining novel, and it had occurred to him that perhaps
she would like to read it. Naturally, after passing through so many
ordeals, Helen asked herself, "Now, what can this man want?" However,
she replied without hesitation, "With pleasure: after a couple of
days, when I have read it, I wish you would come to the cabin and I
will return it to you;" and again she said to herself, "In this way I
shall see more of this man and learn his motive." At a later day she
discovered that he was from New Orleans, a paroled Confederate prisoner
who knew of the Claytons. How he became an ally at a critical moment
will presently appear.

Helen found the book sufficiently interesting to divert her thoughts
from dwelling on the further perplexities which she knew were yet to
come to vex her soul and perhaps hinder her journey. Retiring to her
state-room on the following morning after breakfast, she had again
become absorbed in the pages of the novel when she was startled by a
loud, authoritative voice in the cabin. Curious to know who it could
be, she opened the state-room door, and a glance revealed a new danger.
She saw an officer in Federal uniform and with a conspicuously large
military moustache about to seat himself at the centre-table, at
the same time spreading a large book before him. She perceived that
the hour had arrived which was to put to the test all her courage
and ingenuity. Unnoticed, she stepped back and locked the door, and
climbing up to the highest berth quietly awaited events. Nervously
turning the leaves of her novel, she noticed some words written with
a pencil on the fly-leaf. With eager eyes she read, "Should you need
a friend call on me," signed "Purser," and dated on the previous day.
At that instant she was shocked by hearing Mrs. Clayton's loud voice
in the cabin. Putting her face close to the lattice over the door of
the state-room, she saw the portly Southern dame, who up to this hour
had stoutly affirmed that _never_ would she take the horrid oath of
allegiance to the wicked Yankee government, standing by the table with
her right hand uplifted and deliberately repeating the words dictated
by the officer. Few people have a conception of what an exquisite
instrument of torture was invented when the famous "iron-clad oath," as
it was called, was devised for unrepentant rebels. To refuse it was to
abridge liberty and privilege, while to take and keep it was to abandon
a cause bred into the bone and sinew of the Southerner.

Descending softly but in all haste, Helen unlocked the door, and then
climbing back to the berth again she drew her form out to its full
length and carefully covered herself with the bed-clothing, smoothing
out the wrinkles and entirely concealing herself. Scarcely had she
completed this arrangement when the door was opened, and she recognized
the voice of the colored chambermaid inquiring if any one was in the
state-room who had not yet taken the oath. Fortunately, she did not
enter the room for the purpose of making a close inspection. Aware
that the woman would return, Helen, as soon as the door was closed,
lost no time in getting down from the upper to the lower berth and
taking an easy position with the open book in her hand, in order that
she might be seen on the next visit. No sooner had she done this than
the chambermaid again peered through the door, and seeing Miss Gerard
inquired if she had taken the oath.

With a yawn Helen answered, "Aunty, that matter has all been attended

"All right, honey;" and the negress left, satisfied with having
thoroughly done her duty. In another moment the Federal functionary,
with the great book under his arm, departed, evincing evident
gratification at having performed his duty.

One great danger had been successfully avoided by Helen, but another
was not far distant before she could be permitted to land, of which she
was forcibly reminded when Mr. Anderson came that evening for his book.
She rose to meet him, in order that they might not be overheard. When
she handed the book to him he said in an undertone, "Are you furnished
with the necessary documents to go ashore, as in a few hours we shall
be in New Orleans?"

Avoiding a direct answer, Helen replied, "I do need a friend."

He answered, "Rely upon me, and when going ashore cling closely to my

She gave a searching look at his face, and instinctively divining that
she might hazard herself in his power, replied, "Many thanks: I will do
so," and returned to her seat, not without a vague uneasiness, however.

The spires of New Orleans appeared gleaming in the rising sun of the
following morning, and the steamboat, with all her freight of hopes and
fears, glided up to the levee. Each holding in his hand the official
permit to leave, the passengers pressed into the gangway, where two
officers with crossed swords barred the passage and carefully examined
every paper. The Claytons, having taken the oath, went through without
difficulty, while Helen hastened forward to Mr. Anderson, whom she
found waiting for her in the gangway. He motioned to her to pass in
advance of him. When she came to the crossed swords he cried, "Let this
lady, my sister, pass." The swords separated like magic, and with a
fast-throbbing heart she stepped on shore, and in another moment was
seated in a carriage with her companions. She alighted at the City
Hotel, where she parted with the Claytons.

Once more entirely alone in a strange city, Helen considered the next
step to be taken in her eventful journey. The following morning, the
4th of February, she proceeded to the agency of the steamer Morning
Star, advertised to sail on the 8th, and purchased a ticket, but
was informed that she must procure a pass from the provost-marshal
before attempting to go on board the steamship. The pass could only be
obtained in person. Here was indeed a difficulty, but she soon decided
to confront the danger boldly, and trust to unforeseen circumstances
to suggest some way of extricating herself. Without delay our heroine
reached Carondelet street. Ascending to the second story of a
conspicuous building where the marshal's office was located, she became
one of a crowd impatiently pressing for an audience and separated by
an iron railing from the functionary who presided over the scene.
While awaiting her chance she had an opportunity carefully to study
his handsome features, and quickly discerned him to be a man of action
and decision. His keen, dark-gray eye--that gray so often mistaken for
black--also cautioned her to beware.

It was soon apparent that he had singled out the attractive young lady
from the motley crowd as one who merited unusual attention, for he
ordered his clerk to open the gate and admit her within the official
domain. As she entered the marshal signalled to her to take a seat at
his side, while he continued signing passes. But Helen was conscious
that he was furtively observing her quite as much as the paper on which
he was writing.

Suddenly he turned and inquired of her, "To what place do you wish a

"To New York," she answered.

"Have you taken the oath?" he asked again.

"Not yet," she said: "I should like to do so unobserved."

Folding and placing a large folio under his arm, the officer said,
"Follow me to my private office, where I will administer it." So
saying, he led the way up another flight of stairs to a spacious room.
Spreading the registry of oaths on the table, he bade her be seated.

"Never in the presence of a Yankee officer," she exclaimed.

"Well, as you please," he said impatiently: "now hold up your right

"Nor will I take the oath of allegiance," she added with an emphasis
and audacity that made him start.

"What?" he exclaimed. "Who are you? and where did you come from?"

In a few brief words Miss Gerard told her story.

"And after this you presume to ask a pass of me!" said the officer;
and, putting his pen behind his ear and springing impetuously to his
feet, he led her by one hand to the window, while with his other he
pointed to a gloomy-looking brick building plainly in sight, and
sternly said, "Do you see that parish prison?"

"I do."

"Well, I shall have to put you there unless you consent to take the
oath of allegiance."

Thinking to mollify his wrath, Helen replied in a winning tone, as
only a woman can, "I shall not object to prison if you will be my
jailer"--words that had a prophetic import, as the event proved.

To conceal his feelings, for while she aroused his anger this
fascinatingly perverse girl also strangely attracted him, the marshal
said, "I shall leave you here for a few moments to consider the
matter," and suddenly left the room, but he took the precaution to
lock the door, taking the key with him.

Her eye caught sight of some books and photograph-albums on the table.
Taking up one of the latter and turning over the leaves at random,
her heart stood pulseless for a moment when she saw the photograph of
her own brother; and now she was impatient for Captain McDowell, the
provost-marshal, to return and explain to her this singular possession.
The unexpected sight of a face she loved more than her own life was
enough in this critical situation; not for worlds would she be untrue
to the vow she had given him, whatever might be the result of such
firmness; and she trembled with these violent emotions while she rose
and walked the floor.

After two hours' imprisonment Miss Gerard heard the key turn in the
door, and the captain entered. He asked at what hotel she was staying
and what hour she dined.

"The City Hotel--at five o'clock," she replied.

"I beg your pardon for keeping you here so long," he said. "You may go
now, and I will be there at that hour to dine with you."

Gladly did she avail herself of the permission, saying to herself, "At
dinner I will learn how he came to have brother's picture;" and she
was stimulated in the idea of entertaining the handsome officer by
the thought that she was to show courtesy to one who was perhaps her
brother's friend, and might therefore prove himself an assistant on her
way home.

Helen paid unusual attention to her toilette on this occasion. All
weapons are lawful in war, and none are more conclusive than those fair
woman employs to the confusion of the peace of the masculine mind.
Scarcely were her preparations for the campaign completed when Captain
McDowell was announced. She descended into the parlor to meet him,
full of eagerness to learn about the picture, but she controlled her
curiosity until dinner was over and they were seated in the parlor. She
was then informed that her brother had been a paroled prisoner under
the charge of Captain McDowell until exchanged. A friendship had sprung
up between them, and when parting they had exchanged photographs. The
captain assured her of his pleasure at meeting with the sister of one
he so highly regarded, and that he was ready to assist her out of her
present predicament in every way consistent with his official duties.
He left her with the promise of dining with her on the day of sailing
and of seeing her on board.

The hour of departure found Miss Gerard at the wharf with Captain
McDowell at her side. When they reached the plank leading to the
steamer's deck the provost-marshal's authoritative voice to the
officers detailed there with crossed swords was a sufficient open
sesame to enable Helen to walk quietly on board. After they were in
the cabin the gallant captain lingered at her side until he obtained
from her a promise to correspond with him. Strange inconsistency! one
may say of our fair girl, but not singular in a woman, that after such
fidelity to the cause of the South, and bound by such an inflexible vow
to her brother, which she never verbally broke, she was at that very
hour actually touched by a tenderness for one who was doing all in
his power to overthrow the Confederacy, and had proved his earnestness
on many a hard-fought field, especially at Raymond and Fort Gibson,
where they had already trodden the same path without being aware of
each other's existence. But this very inconsistency is, after all, the
strongest proof that politics holds a secondary place in the heart of
woman, and that love is always the first necessity of her being.

Helen, after such various and hazardous adventures, found herself once
more in her native city, New York. Many solicitous and finally tender
letters passed between the captain and Miss Gerard, but when the formal
proposal of marriage was made she placed the missive in her father's

"Daughter, is your heart in this?" he asked.

"Yes," was her modest reply; and the next steamer carried a joint
letter from father and daughter extending a cordial invitation to
Captain McDowell to make them a visit. In the following autumn one of
October's fairest days saw Helen the bride of the officer in blue coat
and brass buttons.



Somewhat more than twenty years have elapsed since Heine's death. Had
he lived to the present time he would have been little past the age of
eighty, and there are many of his contemporaries and associates who are
still alive. Though an exceptionally isolated figure in the world of
letters, he serves to connect us in a great measure with the heroic age
of German literature; and not in point of time only, but by the nature
of his work, which exhibits certain elements of the Goethe-and-Schiller
period, combined with others of the school of "Young Germany," so
called. This, at least, is the position always assigned him; and the
following pages may not be uninteresting in showing to some extent,
and by means of a few of the more striking points of his character and
genius, how far he really occupies this place in literature.

How came Heinrich Heine to be a product of German soil at all? is the
first question which naturally arises in regard to him--that "son of
the Revolution," as he somewhere styles himself, who made France his
adopted country for nearly half his life; with his ardent sympathy for
French ideas; with his wonderful wit, which laid presumptuous claim to
the mantle of Voltaire and Aristophanes; with such rapid and facile
powers of expression for his thought as makes even Lowell, who greatly
amuses himself at the expense of German composition in general, admit
that "Heine can be airily light in German;" with his intense belief
in the progressive spirit of his own time, and his intense hatred of
its accompanying advance of utilitarianism and philistinism? Even the
poet's laurel, the closest tie that bound him to his own people, he
would have been willing to lay aside. "I do not know," he writes, "if I
fairly deserve to have my grave adorned with the poet's laurel. Poetry,
however much I loved her, was always but a sacred plaything to me, or a
consecrated means to divine ends. I have never laid much stress on the
poet's fame, and care little if my songs get praise or blame. But ye
may lay a sword upon my coffin, for I was a brave soldier in the War of
Liberation for humanity." And yet, in spite of it all, by his culture,
by his sentiment and by his real sympathies, Heine belonged to the land
of his birth rather than to the land of his adoption.

But there is one circumstance which must be regarded at the very outset
in treating of him--a circumstance of race, which colors more deeply
than any other his intellectual as well as his worldly career, and
leaves its mark on almost everything that comes from his hand: Heine
was a Jew, possessing certain indelible characteristics of his race.
This we must never forget, for Heine himself never forgot it. His
Jewish origin was always a mingled source of bitterness and pride. His
deification of the chosen people and the pitiless mockery which he
bestows on them would be hard to reconcile in another. He gloried in
what their past could show, but spared no words of ridicule and scorn
for the days of their weakness and infirmity: he became unfaithful to
their traditions, and was baptized a Christian in order to obtain a
university degree; and yet he never escaped what he himself calls "the
ineradicable Jew in him."

To be a Jew in Germany in the early part of the present century meant,
if not actual physical persecution, a political and social one of the
crudest kind for all whose intellectual and spiritual necessities
carried them beyond the barriers imposed by legislation and by society.
It is true that in Berlin there had gathered a brilliant circle of
cultivated Israelites who had risen to the highest intellectual
attainments; but they were excluded, as well as their less-enlightened
brethren, from all national existence, and even from all the learned
professions except that of medicine. They had formed, what was called
a "Society for the Promotion of Culture and Progress among the Jews,"
in which Heine himself was at one time much interested, but after his
baptism he seems to have mingled as little as possible with his own

Heine's conversion to Christianity--or rather his baptism, for the
word "conversion" cannot be applied to the renunciation of one form
of religious dogma and the adoption of another for purely material
ends--has been the cause of more controversy than any other incident
of his life, and has always been used as a main stronghold and point
of attack by his enemies. There is not much defence to offer for the
act, for Heine, in spite of a Voltairean scorn of dogma and creed,
possessed a deep tinge of religious feeling, and that he felt keenly
the humiliation of his position--to use no harsher term--can be seen by
the following expression regarding it. "Is it not foolish?" he writes
to a friend. "I am no sooner baptized than I am cried down as a Jew:
I am now hated by Jew and Christian alike." And again, in speaking of
another converted Jew who is engaged in preaching his newly-acquired
doctrine: "If he does this from conviction, he is a fool: if he does it
from hypocritical motives, he is worse. I shall not cease to love Gans,
but I confess I had far rather have learned instead of this that he
had stolen silver spoons. That you, dear Moser," he continues, "should
think as Gans does I cannot believe, although assured. I should be very
sorry if my own baptism should appear to you in any favorable light.
I assure you if the laws permitted the stealing of silver spoons I
should not have been baptized." The jest has its pathos as well as its
wit, for Heine's pecuniary prospects were always precarious, and the
fatal baptism, which only brought upon him the pity and contempt of his
friends and doubled the insults of his enemies, defeated its own ends
and contributed nothing to his material needs.

Heine's personal history is unusually obscure. An interesting and
valuable _Life_ of him has been written by Herr Adolph Stroeltmann,
but the author's materials are avowedly scanty, and the Heine memoirs,
which have long been watched for with hungry eyes by the critics and
biographers, are still withheld from publication by members of the
family, with the prospect that they will never be given to the public.
He was born at Düsseldorf on the Rhine December 13, 1799. "On my
cradle," he writes, "fell the last moonbeams of the eighteenth century
and the first morning-glow of the nineteenth"--words not a little
significant of the lifelong sense within him of the genius of a bygone
age and the spirit of a coming one. His boyhood was passed during the
time of Napoleon's supremacy in the Rhine provinces, and among other
changes wrought under French jurisdiction was the establishment by
imperial decree of certain state schools called "lyceums," at one of
which Heine received the greater part of his school-education. The town
was garrisoned by French troops, and here it was that the boy became
acquainted with the old French drummer whom he afterward commemorates
so charmingly in the sketch of his childhood known as the "Buch Le
Grand." These early influences must certainly have been at the root of
that passion for French ideas and French manners which characterized
his later years, just as his boyish visions of the Great Emperor as he
passed through Düsseldorf never quite lost their enchantment in after
life, and long blinded him to the real meaning of Bonapartism.

Twice he saw Napoleon--once in 1811, and again in the following
year--and his impressions are worth recording, especially as they are
given in his most characteristic manner: "What were my feelings when
I saw him with my own favored eyes!--himself, hosannah! the emperor!
It was in the avenue of the court-garden at Düsseldorf. As I pushed my
way among the gaping people I thought of his battles and his deeds; and
yet I thought at the same time of the police regulations against riding
through the avenue on pain of a five-thaler fine, and the emperor rode
quietly through the avenue and no policeman stopped him. Never will
his image vanish from my memory. I shall always see him high upon his
steed, with those eternal eyes in his marble imperial face looking down
with the calmness of Fate on the guards defiling by. He was sending
them to Russia, and the old grenadiers looked up to him in such awful
devotion, such deeply-conscious sympathy, such pride of death!--

  Te, Cæsar, morituri salutant!

Sometimes a secret doubt creeps over me whether I have really seen
him, whether we really were his associates; and then it seems to me
as if his image, snatched from the meagre frame of the present, melts
ever more proudly and more imperiously into the twilight of the past.
His name already sounds like a voice from the ancient world, and as
antique and heroic as the names of Alexander and Cæsar." Even to
Heine, Napoleon was the representative of the great principles of the
Revolution: moreover, he assumed at one time the rôle of liberator of
the Jews by conferring on them civil and political rights, while in his
armies positions of the highest distinction, dependent only on personal
merit, awaited them. But this too ardent hero-worship did not last.
"Take me not, dear reader, I pray, for an unconditional Bonapartist,"
he says sorrowfully on the battle-field of Marengo. "My homage does
not touch the actions but the genius of the man, whether his name be
Alexander or Cæsar or Napoleon. I did love him unconditionally until
the Eighteenth Brumaire: then he betrayed liberty." And again, later:
"It is true, it is a thousand times true, that Napoleon was an enemy of
freedom, a crowned despot of selfishness:" "he could deal with men and
personal interests, not with ideas; and that was his greatest fault and
the reason of his fall." "At bottom he is nothing but a brilliant fact,
the meaning of which is still half a secret."

Among Heine's home-influences during his childhood that of his mother
stands most prominent for good, and he never speaks of her but with
reverence and affection. Of the character of his father very little
is known. Harry, as the boy was originally named, was destined for
a business career, as his parents were unable to send him to the
university, and he was placed for this purpose in a banker's office
in Frankfort. The situation was exceedingly distasteful to him, and
he left it at the end of two weeks. Another attempt was made to
establish him in the banking-business at Hamburg under the charge of
a millionaire uncle, one of Hamburg's most worthy and respectable
citizens, who plays an important part in the earlier part of Heine's
career. Here he remained about two years, but with little better result
than before. His Hamburg life seems to have been a failure in almost
every sense. He got into trouble with certain of his uncle's relations,
fell in love with one of his cousins, who shortly after married a more
successful rival, and chafed under the dreary monotony which a business
life offered to his susceptible temperament; until finally his uncle,
seeing that he was in every way unfitted for his occupation, determined
to send him to the University of Bonn, under the condition that he
should fit himself for the legal profession. Thus Heine was pledged,
as it were, from the first to his conversion--a fact all the more
remarkable as Solomon Heine, the uncle, was a sturdy adherent of the
Jewish faith himself.

The next five years were passed, with certain intervals, at the
universities of Bonn, Göttingen and Berlin, and the elder Heine must
have watched with some natural concern the career of his wilful
protégé, who pursued anything but the course of study marked out
for him, and turned his attention mainly to Oriental and mediæval
literature, history, philology and other congenial pursuits, quite to
the detriment of his professional studies. It was during the years of
his university life that he appeared before the world as an author.
His first volume of poems was published in 1821, soon followed by the
two tragedies of _Ratcliffe_ and _Almanzor_--deservedly the least
popular of all his works--and the first volume of the _Reisebilder_.
Never were the writings of an unknown author greeted with a speedier
recognition, and he stepped at once into the full sunshine of his
fame. Nevertheless, fame alone without its more substantial benefits
could not free him from a pecuniary dependence on his uncle which was
often as humiliating as it was indispensable. "Had the stupid boy
learned anything," replied the latter once when congratulated upon his
distinguished nephew, "he would not need to write books;" and these
words betray an abundant source for those wearisome and ceaseless
misunderstandings between uncle and nephew which only ceased with the
former's death, and indicate perhaps one reason for the unhappy temper
of the young author's genius.

There is but one theme in nearly all the early poems of Heine, and
more particularly in those of the _Lyrisches Intermezzo_. The sorrows
of an unhappy love are sung with a passion and a fervor such as one
finds only in the higher forms of poetry. He adopted for his verse
the old mediæval ballad-metre, preserving in a wonderful degree the
limpid simplicity of the original, and infusing into it, as into all
that comes from his pen, the modern sentiment and spirit. He calls upon
all external Nature to share his sufferings, and invests every natural
object with an intense personal interest which belongs only to that
people whose egoism has outlived centuries of obliterating influences.
The following songs, although they are very familiar ones, illustrate
particularly well the characteristics just mentioned. I give them in
the original, as they suffer unusually by translation:

    Und wüssten's die Blumen die kleinen,
      Wie tief verwundet mein Herz,
    Sie würden mit mir weinen,
      Zu heilen meinen Schmerz.

    Und wüssten's die Nachtigallen,
      Wie ich so traurig und krank,
    Sie hiessen fröhlich erschallen
      Erquickenden Gesang.

    Und wüssten sie meine Wehe,
      Die goldenen Sternelein,
    Sie kämen aus ihrer Höhe,
      Und sprächen Trost mir ein.

    Die alle können's nicht wissen,
      Nur eine kennt mein Schmerz:
    Sie hat ja selbst zerrissen,
      Zerrissen mir das Herz.


    Warum sind denn die Rosen so blass,
      O sprich, mein Lieb, warum?
    Warum sind denn im grünen Gras
      Die blauen Veilchen so stumm?

    Warum singt denn mit so kläglichem Laut
      Die Lerche in der Luft?
    Warum steigt denn aus dem Balsamkraut
      Hervor ein Leichenduft?

    Warum scheint denn die Sonn' auf die Au
      So kalt und verdriesslich herab?
    Warum ist denn die Erde so grau
      Und öde wie ein Grab?

    Warum bin ich selbst so krank und so trüb,
      Mein liebes Liebchen? Sprich!
    O sprich, mein herzallerliebstes Lieb,
      Warum verliessest du mich?

Heine could never write in any of the classic metres, and an amusing
anecdote is related by Maximilian Heine, the younger brother of the
poet, of an attempt once made by the latter at hexameter verse. This
brother, Max, was at the time in one of the upper classes of the
Gymnasium, and, pluming himself greatly on his own proficiency in the
composition of hexameters, urged the young poet to try his skill in the
same direction. Heine complied, and came in due time to read to his
brother the result of his efforts. Hardly had he reached the third line
when Max broke forth impatiently: "For Heaven's sake, dear brother,
this hexameter has but five feet!" and he pompously scanned the verse.
When convinced of his error Heinrich petulantly tore the paper into
bits, exclaiming, "Shoemaker, stick to your last!" and nothing more
was heard about hexameters until two days later, when Max was awakened
early one morning to find his brother at his bedside. "Ah, dear Max,"
he began with a piteous air, "what a fearful night have I passed! Only
think! Directly after midnight, just as I had gone to sleep, I felt
a mountain's weight upon me: the unhappy hexameter had come limping
on five feet to my bedside, demanding of me, in terrible tones and
with the most fearful threats, its sixth foot. Shylock could not have
insisted more obstinately upon his pound of flesh. It appealed to its
primeval classic right, and left me with the most frightful menaces,
only on condition that I never again in my whole life would meddle with
a hexameter."

The time of Heine's entrance in the field of literature was no
unfavorable one for an individual genius like his own. The so-called
Classic and Romantic schools of Germany had each in its own direction
reached the ultimate limits of its development. Schiller was
dead, Goethe was at work upon the second part of _Faust_ and the
_Westöstliche Divan_, while such of the Romantic writers as were left
had penetrated far into the realms of mediæval mysticism to bring
to the light only wild and distorted forms of imagery and the most
extravagant creations of morbid fancy. In Heine, who could sing of love
and moonlight and nightingales with the best of them, they thought they
had found a new champion to revive their now declining glory, little
dreaming that ten years later, in his famous essay on the Romantic
school, he was destined to deal their cause its deathblow and disperse
for ever the lingering mists and spectres of German Romanticism.
Nevertheless, all Heine's earlier writings, prose as well as verse,
show very clearly the influence of the school. "I am tired of this
guerrilla warfare," he writes in 1830, "and long for rest. What an
irony of fate, that I, who would rest so gladly on the pillow of a
quiet, contemplative inner life--that I should be destined to scourge
my poor fellow-countrymen from their comfortable existence and stir
them into activity--I, who like best to watch the passing clouds, to
invent (_erklügeln_) metrical magic, to hearken to the secrets of the
spirits of the elements and absorb myself in the wonder-world of old
tales,--I must edit political annals, preach the topics of the time,
stir up the passions!" A little later comes the news of the Revolution
in Paris, and all these vague romantic longings have vanished into air,
melted away by the beams of the July sun.

These tendencies may have first roused the determined hostility with
which the followers of Goethe greeted the new poet and indignantly
repelled the claims of his friends for his succession to Goethe's lyric
muse. There was, at all events no love lost between the great Goethe
himself and his younger contemporary. Goethe simply ignored Heine,
and the latter, though he could not reciprocate in this way, did not
spare his mighty rival certain home-thrusts on his most vulnerable
side. He made a pilgrimage to Weimar in 1824 on his return from the
famous Harz journey, but he is exceedingly reticent on the subject,
and the following humorous account from the _Romantische Schule_ is
almost the only one to be had of the visit. "His form," he writes, "was
harmonious, clear, joyous, nobly-proportioned, and Greek art could be
studied in him as in an antique: his eyes were at rest like those of
a god. It is generally the distinguishing mark of the gods that their
gaze is steadfast, and their eyes do not wander in uncertainty hither
and thither. Napoleon's eyes had this peculiarity also, and therefore
I am convinced that he was a god. Goethe's eyes were as divine in his
advanced age as in his youth. Time had covered his head with snow,
but it could not bend it. He bore it ever proud and high, and when he
reached forth his hand, it was as if he would prescribe to the stars
their course in the heavens. There are those who profess to have
observed the cold lines of egotism about his mouth, but these lines
belong also to the immortal gods, and above all to the Father of the
gods, the great Jupiter, with whom I have already compared Goethe. In
truth, when I visited him in Weimar and stood before him, I glanced
involuntarily aside to see if the eagle and the thunderbolts were at
hand. I came very near addressing him in Greek, but when I noticed
that he understood German I told him in German that the plums on the
road between Weimar and Jena tasted very good. I had pondered in so
many long winter nights over all the lofty and profound things I should
say to Goethe if I should ever see him, and when at last I saw him
I told him that the Saxon plums tasted very good; and Goethe smiled
with the same lips that had once kissed the fair Leda, Europa, Danäe,
Semele, and so many other princesses or even ordinary nymphs."--"My
soul is shaken," he cries elsewhere, "and my eye burns, and that is an
unfavorable condition for a writer, who should control his material
and remain beautifully objective (_hübsch objektiv bleiben soll_), as
the Art School requires and as Goethe has done. He has become eighty
years old by it," he adds with incomparable irony, "and minister, and
well-to-do (_wohlhabend_). Poor German people! this is thy greatest
man!" To all this there is a keenly personal edge, but the real gulf
between the two lies deeper than wounded vanity on the one side and
possible jealousy on the other, and is as wide and impassable as
Heine's own distinction between the Hellenic and the Judaic views of
life. Heine, vitally absorbed in all the questions that the present
brought, and in the very heat and stress of its conflicts, watched the
"Great Pagan" in the fulness of his years crystallizing his life's
experience in beautiful and polished, but ever more and more lifeless,
forms of verse, striving toward pure Hellenism, as Goethe's followers
called his imitation of classic forms, withdrawn from all the social
and political problems of the day far into the realms of scientific
research; and he cried out impatiently about coldness, indifference to
the true interests of mankind--compared Goethe's creations to the Greek
statues in the Louvre, with no humanity in them, but only divinity and
stone. But Goethe, with his theory of color, with his botany, anatomy,
osteology and the rest, had caught a spark from what was to be the
genius of a future generation, and this Heine was not prophet enough to

The time, we have said, was favorable for Heine's entrance into
literature: it was anything but favorable for the rôle which he began
almost at once to play--that of political and social agitator. The
political atmosphere of Germany during the years that preceded the July
Revolution was stifling in the extreme. The famous War of Liberation
had freed the people from the grasp of Napoleon, but seemed only to
have increased the weight of home despotism: the press was subjected
to searching government investigation, and as a result all political
opinions were suppressed in the daily journals, which in lieu of
politics supplied little else but theatrical and musical gossip.
This was no condition of things for Heine, who could never move in
prescribed paths in any direction, and who had to submit to seeing his
work scarred and mutilated by the red pencil of the censorship; and he
began to look toward France as a land of refuge in case of accident,
as it were, until finally, after the July Revolution, the Rhine
became a Jordan and Paris a New Jerusalem to his longing eyes, and he
emigrated thither, to the land of freedom and "good cheer," to return
but once again to his native country. There is no real evidence of his
exile being a compulsory one, but under such circumstances his life
at home must have been at best a precarious one. According to his own
delightfully humorous account, he had learned from an old councillor
at Berlin who had passed many years at the fortress of Spandau how
unpleasant it was to wear chains in winter. "'If they had only warmed
our chains for us a little they would not have made such an unpleasant
impression: they ought, too, to have had the forethought to have them
perfumed with essence of roses and laurel, as they do in this country.'
I asked my councillor if he often had oysters at Spandau. He said, 'No:
Spandau was too far from the sea. Meat,' he said, 'was quite rare there
too, and there was no other kind of fowl than the flies which fell into
the soup.' And so, as I really needed recreation, and Spandau was too
far from the sea for oysters, and the Spandau fowl-broth did not tempt
me especially, and the Prussian chains were very cold in winter and
quite detrimental to my health, I resolved to journey to Paris, and
there, in the fatherland of champagne and the Marseillaise, to drink
the one and to hear the other sung."

Few particulars of Heine's Parisian life are known, notwithstanding
that during its earlier period he reached the zenith of his fame and
popularity, and lived, according to his own statement, like a god--a
life to end, alas! only too soon. He set himself during these years
to the task of bringing about a mutual understanding between the
French and the German people, and with this end in view he wrote his
famous essays on the _Romantic School_ and _Religion and Philosophy
in Germany_, and sent to the Augsburg _Allgemeine Zeitung_ those
letters on the politics and art of the day which give one of the most
brilliant and vivid pictures in existence of Paris under the "Citizen"
monarchy. Well for Heine if those bright Parisian days had lasted! He
was overtaken only too soon by a fate as terrible as any that martyr
was ever called upon to endure. His nervous organization had always
been an exceedingly sensitive one, and he had long suffered from severe
and frequent headaches. During the latter part of his life in Paris his
health gradually declined, until in 1848 he received his deathblow in a
stroke of paralysis which left him almost blind, crippled and helpless,
and subject to frequent attacks of intense physical agony--a blow which
did not kill him, however, for eight years. His patience--nay, his
heroism--through all his lingering torture was the testimony of every
one who was a witness of his sufferings; and, what was more wonderful,
he retained the powers of his mind in undiminished vigor to the very
end. He died in February, 1856, poor as he had almost always lived, and
almost in obscurity, for the world had withdrawn from the spectacle of
so much suffering, and only a few friends remained to him to the last.

Such a death is terribly sad, but its heroism has all the pathos and
nobility of real tragedy, and atones in more than full measure for a
life that was not always heroic. Can it atone as well for a literary
name that was not wholly untarnished? Nothing can quite justify certain
literary sins which Heine at times committed, but when such offences
are noted down it is best to let them go. Heine's life was certainly
one of unremitting warfare--one long record of personal attacks on his
enemies, of broils with his critics, of unblushing license of speech,
of undaunted adherence to the ideas for which he lived and wrote--one
long cry of protest against the outward conditions of life and society
as he found them, which rings in those strange minor tones of feeling
that are the keynote of his genius, rising sometimes to an almost
childish petulance, and sinking again into chords of the truest pathos.
Where is his place and what was his achievement it is very hard to say.
He was one of those figures which arise here and there in the history
of literature--of men intensely penetrated with the spirit of the age
in which they live, who are alike bitterly impatient of its follies
and its conservatism. They cannot see far into the future, they cannot
always estimate the past: their genius is not universal, but it has
always something of the vitality of present interest about it, and is
subject in no common degree to the errors of contemporary judgment.
Byron was another such figure, and, though his genius had almost
nothing in common with Heine's, the ideas for which they fought were
very nearly the same--ideas which were the outgrowth of the Revolution,
by which they sought to stem the tide of reactionary feeling that set
in so strongly from every direction, in religion and politics as well
as in literature, during the early part of our own century. Their
method of fighting, too, was the same, for they both used their own
persons as weapons in their cause; but where Byron's egotism becomes
dreary and oppressive, Heine's awakens that vivid feeling of interest
which comes usually with personal intercourse alone. He uses himself,
along with and as a part of his material, in such a way that his very
egotism lends to his writings the greater part of their force and
originality, and becomes one of the most potent instruments of his
irony and wit.

Heine chose for himself the sword of the soldier rather than the
poet's laurel, but he chose to fight alone, and the nineteenth century
is not the age nor its society the field for single-handed combat.
That he seems to have felt this himself, one of his latest poems from
the _Romancero_ will show. I give it in Lord Houghton's admirable
translation: it is called


    In Freedom's war of "Thirty Years" and more
      A lonely outpost have I held in vain,
    With no triumphant hope or prize in store,
      Without a thought to see my home again.

    I watched both day and night: I could not sleep
      Like my well-tented comrades far behind,
    Though near enough to let their snoring keep
      A friend awake if e'er to doze inclined.

    And thus, when solitude my spirits shook,
      Or fear--for all but fools know fear sometimes--
    To rouse myself and them I piped, and took
      A gay revenge in all my wanton rhymes.

    Yes, there I stood, my musket always ready,
      And when some sneaking rascal showed his head
    My eye was vigilant, my aim was steady,
      And gave his brains an extra dose of lead.

    But war and justice have far different laws,
      And worthless acts are often done right well:
    The rascals' shots were better than their cause,
      And I was hit--and hit again, and fell!

    That outpost is abandoned: while the one
      Lies in the dust, the rest in troops depart.
    Unconquered, I have done what could be done,
      With sword unbroken and with broken heart.

This little poem represents rather pathetically, and in a certain
sense the limitations of Heine's genius; for it is impossible not to
feel that his genius never found its highest expression--that confined
within a narrower channel its force would have been irresistible where
now it is only brilliantly dispersive. It seems as if literature in its
proper sense had lost something by Heine's personal enlistment in all
the conflicts of his day--as if the man of ideas had tried to approach
too closely and too curiously to the realities of life, and had only
succeeded in bringing into glaring prominence the irreconcilable nature
of the forces at work in the world and in ourselves; and never was
reconcilement less possible between the real and the ideal than at the
time of which we speak. This is the meaning of the _Weltschmerz_ and
the _maladie du siècle_ of which we hear so much, and everything
seemed to conspire to render Heine its chief representative.

But a negative judgment is not enough for a final estimate of Heinrich
Heine. Much of his service to literature and to mankind was of a very
positive character. As a man of letters he created a prose style
unequalled in clearness and brilliancy by anything previously known
in German literature--Goethe's prose is ponderous in comparison--and
its influence will be felt long after certain of its mannerisms have
passed into oblivion. His wit is destined to immortality by reason of
the serious purpose that underlies it. It has a spontaneity which no
wit exercised merely for its own ends can ever have. Those who call
Heine frivolous and a mocker, simply because he can jest at serious
things, can only know him very superficially or else must be ignorant
of the real part which humor has to play in the world. Perhaps there
never was a writer who shook himself so free of all conventionalities
of style. His very mannerisms--and his writings abound in them--have a
spontaneity about them, and only become affectations in the innumerable
imitations which cluster around all his literary productions. This
is his service to literature: his service to posterity was as great.
He did some goodly service in the "War of Liberation of humanity,"
if in no other way, by setting the example of a man who could speak
unflinchingly for principles at a time when such utterance was not easy.

It will not be possible to follow up these general statements with any
further examination of Heine's life or his writings. It has been the
present purpose to indicate only in the broadest outlines the scope and
general character of the man and his work, and leave to the reader to
prove the truth of what has been said by his own investigation. There
is no single literary figure that is better worth the task of study
than Heine, and to sum up briefly what this article has been mainly
designed to show, we must pronounce him if not one of the greatest, at
least one of the most original, figures in all literature.



    What was thy dream, sweet Morning? for, behold!
      Thine eyes are heavy with the balm of night,
    And, like reluctant lilies, to the light
    The languid lids of lethargy unfold.
    Was it the tale of Yesterday retold--
      An echo wakened from the western height,
      Where the warm glow of sunset dalliance bright
    Grew, with the pulse of waning passion, cold?
    Or was it some heraldic vision grand
      Of legends that forgotten ages keep
        In twilight, where the sundering shoals of day
      Vex the dim sails, unpiloted, of sleep,
        Till, one by one, the freighting fancies gay,
    Like bubbles, vanish on the treacherous strand?




All the celebrated creatures whom Fate or the lecture-committee chance
to bring to our town profess themselves amazed that Mrs. Marcellus
should continue to make this little-celebrated locality her home.
The comment has a double import, containing at once a compliment
and the reverse. If therein be conveyed an intimation that Hurville
as a place of residence is devoid of those varied opportunities for
self-improvement, gayety and æsthetic culture which render existence
in the great centres so diversified and so charming, or even should
the insinuation go so far as to clearly express the indubitable
fact that it is a crude, ragged little town, with a few staring red
brick business-houses fronting each other on the muddy or dusty
or frozen main street (according to the season), and a numerous
colony of wooden cottages dotted around "promiscuous" as an outer
fringe--nay, should Hurville even be apostrophized as a "hole," as
it was once by a lecturer who came during the mud-reign and failed
to draw a house,--why, even the most enthusiastic Hurvillian need
take no offence. But whatever the town may be, think what our
fellow-townswoman, Mrs. Marcellus, is! One of the greatest favorites
our lecture-committee secures for us each year, a dramatic reader
with a stentorian voice and a fine frenzy rolling around loose in his
eye, expressed the whole thing in what I may call a Shakespearian
nutshell by a happy paraphrase of the great bard. "It was not," said
Mr. Blankenhoff, "that people appreciated Hurville _less_, but Mrs.
Marcellus _more_." That settled it.

I have been very frank, as you see, about Hurville, because, although
many of our business-men, in a sort of small beer of local patriotism,
insist upon taking up the utterly untenable position that Hurville is
the only "live town" in the country outside of New York and Chicago, I
am unable to recognize this astonishing vitality myself, and I always
say that if Hurville is "live," I should like to know what something
dead looks like, acts like, and especially buys and sells like. The
commerce of the place has been completely stagnant for several years,
and in Hurville, if ever anywhere, is it a mystery to one half the
world how the other half lives. I believe both halves would now be one
complete and thoroughly defunct whole were it not that the vital spark
is kept alive in both sections by Mrs. Marcellus. Her position in a
community so provincial, and in many respects so narrow-minded, as that
of our little place, has always been an exceedingly singular one; yet
she was lifted to the throne of leadership of our choicest circle on
her arrival, and has wielded the sceptre uninterruptedly ever since,
without the slightest breath of disaffection having arisen among her
courtiers. When she first came to Hurville, fifteen years ago, she was
a young widow of thirty, very handsome, very travelled, very cultured,
very stylish and passably rich. She is all this yet, and much more that
is good and lovable as well. On the left-hand side of the account there
is nothing to make a blur except that she is now a motherly lady of
forty-five, instead of being, as she was when she first came, just on
the last step of the stairs where girlhood shuts the door in a woman's
face finally--at thirty.

Her coming to Hurville was rather odd, and at first she had not the
slightest intention of remaining. Her object in visiting the place
was to negotiate the sale of the residence she now occupies, the
best house in the town yet, and fifteen years ago considered a very
imposing mansion--so much so that when the railroad came the heavy
men of the community insisted on the track being laid in such a way
that passengers inside the cars could get a full view of the Marcellus
house as they whizzed by. The house was built for the father of Mrs.
Marcellus's husband, a sharp old fellow who came to the town when the
general impression prevailed that Hurville was going to make Chicago
shut up shop, and ultimately to see the grass grow in what are still
very thriving thoroughfares of the city of New York. Old Marcellus
made all the money out of Hurville that the town will afford for the
next half century at least, and died in the shanty he had always lived
in just as the builders were putting the last touch on that elegant
mansion, which was supposed to be but the first of a series of princely
residences which when completed would make Fifth Avenue and Walnut
street wonder what they were begun for if thus so early they were done
for by the wealth and enterprise of Hurville. Old Marcellus's son never
came to Hurville. He was educated abroad, and married this lady, a
young New Yorker, at her home. He was in poor health and died in Paris,
leaving his wife a good deal of property, including this house, and two
little daughters to take care of.

She stayed a few weeks at the hotel of those days, a most comfortable
one--for, though the building was of frame and the furniture old
and shabby, travellers often say that the meals were better and the
bed-linen cleaner and better aired than in the present imposing
Dépôt Hotel--and finding no one willing or able to buy the Marcellus
house at anything like its value, she one day astonished everybody
by saying that the house was now withdrawn from sale and that she
was going to live in it herself. What a sensation occurred when her
furniture arrived! She had brought over all her elegant belongings
from Paris, those being days when household effects which had been
in use by Americans abroad for a year were passed free of duty at
the custom-house. Even now you can scarcely find in any community a
house more beautifully furnished than Mrs. Marcellus's. She still uses
the things she brought from France, and never allows her head to be
turned by any vagaries respecting house-decoration. Her pale-yellow
satin drawing-room furniture is charming, a real reminiscence of Marie
Antoinette's at the Little Trianon at Versailles. Bronzes and marbles
of chaste and beautiful subjects, water-colors and oil-paintings signed
by noted names, fresh flowers in lovely abundance at all seasons of the
year,--oh, it is a rare home of beauty and culture! And the best of it
is, as Mrs. Marcellus often tells us at her pleasant dinner-parties or
her cozy Saturday evenings, that by living in Hurville she can enjoy
this agreeable and ladylike mode of existence, can do what we know she
does for the poor, can subscribe to all periodicals of the day in any
way worthy, can entertain her friends often--to their great delight,
all loudly exclaim--without being haunted by the slightest shadow of
anxiety regarding her income. If she had continued to live in New York
she would by this time probably be bankrupt, for a similar manner of
living in that costly city would be a dozen times more expensive than
it is in Hurville. As it is, she even lays up money; and when her
daughters both married, as they did on the same day five years ago,
Mrs. Marcellus astonished all the wedding-participants by announcing to
them the growth of a plum to the credit of each which she had planted
and preserved for them in the hothouse of an old reliable banker's safe
in Boston.

I have mentioned Mrs. Marcellus's Saturday evenings. They are the sole
means of intellectual exchange Hurville possesses. In fact, without
them our mental condition must have degenerated long ere this into
something analogous to that of the cabbage, for most of us are too
poor to take trips to the cities to brush up our brains, and we have
no public or private library worthy the name in the place. Of late
even our lecture-course--which used to be renowned as one of the
most successful in the country, for a small town--has dwindled down
almost to nothing, the hard times affecting this as everything else.
No, not everything: hard times make no difference in Mrs. Marcellus's
Saturdays, thank the powers! Every Saturday evening we gather around
that yellow satin furniture, inspect once more those oft-inspected
pictures (always discovering new beauties in them), try to air a little
art-jargon concerning the statuettes and bric-à-brac, look over the
last new periodicals, sniff the flowers and say "How sweet!"--the women
always asking how she keeps them with the gas, and Mrs. Marcellus
always answering that she doesn't: she has them changed. At nine
o'clock tea and etceteras are served up. The fine tea-service of rarest
old blue Nankin is laid out upon a tablecloth of daintiest linen
deeply embroidered with blue of a corresponding shade. Tea-cakes and
pâtés whose ingredients are to be found in no cookery-book whatever
greet the delighted and unexpectant palate. With her white, shapely,
graceful hands Mrs. Marcellus tenders us these luscious lollipops and
again and again refills the steaming bowl. At eleven o'clock precisely
the neat and pretty maid, who always wears a white cap, brings in Mrs.
Marcellus's small bedroom lamp; and this means good-night to visitors.
These evenings are the pride and comfort of the town, and it is a
point of honor with those of us who know we are welcome to attend
every Saturday without intermission. Whenever the gathering chances
to be small you may be sure that the cause of it is to be found in a
weather-condition when to say "raining cats and dogs," "blowing great
guns" or "snowing like Siberia" is to use a comparison quite feeble
and inexpressive. But even on such occasions a few gentlemen always
contrive to drop in. They are sent by their wives when these cannot
come, and they always find Mrs. Marcellus her amiable, reposeful self,
whom no chances of temperature can affect.

On a particularly stormy and disagreeable Saturday of the past winter
I hesitated long about making my usual call. Not that I did not want
to go, nor that I cared much for the weather, but it seemed to me
impossible that on such a night Mrs. Marcellus should take the trouble
to light her gas-jets (always supplemented by a large, softly-beaming
oil-lamp for the centre-table) or ignite the splendid roaring fire of
wood and coal mingled which, burning redly in a deep, low, richly
colored grate of brass and steel, gives in winter the finishing touch
of comfort and home-likeness to that delicious yellow satin drawing
room. In summer the grate is entirely removed, and the vacant space
is filled with flowering plants, tastefully framed by the hanging
mantelpiece valance above and long, narrow, gracefully draped curtains
at the sides, which take away all look of bareness from that central
point of interest in every apartment, the fireplace. Yet the prospect
of spending in my own cheerless room and quite alone the only evening
of the week on which circumstances permit me to sit up at all late
was scarcely flattering. I have to be at the store every morning
before eight, and therefore on every night but Saturday I retire at
an hour of a primitive earliness only equalled by that prevailing in
well-regulated nurseries. On Sunday mornings I am able to sleep rather
late, but pay for the privilege by the enforced juxtaposition of the
heavy breakfast sausage with the tough dinner roast beef, my landlady,
in a fit of the contraries, always advancing dinner many hours on the
day when of all others it should be very much retarded, and would be if
the digestive apparatus of the American people had any rights which the
landlady of the period were bound to respect.

But these details have small bearing on the story I am relating.
To resume: Driven out, in spite of the stormy weather, by the
cheerlessness of my room, I hastened on the Saturday evening in
question to seek the warm and comforting shelter of Mrs. Marcellus's
abode. All was as serene within that model home as if the raging
elements themselves had been subdued by the grand white hands of Mrs.
Marcellus, and at her order had been stuffed with eiderdown and covered
with yellow satin by a Paris upholsterer. How soothing to the rasped
nerves was this interior--the crackling fire, the lights, the flowers,
the soft rays from the lamp falling on the gray silk dress and the
lace headdress of Mrs. Marcellus as she sat at the solid, large round
centre-table with a basket of gay-colored embroidery-silks before
her! Besides myself there were five visitors, all gentlemen of course,
and most of them individuals who are not much given to loquacity.
The lack of conversation was somewhat marked. Still, no one felt any
obligation to keep the ball of small talk rolling. Mrs. Marcellus says
that when people come to see her she wants them to converse or to keep
silent as the spirit moves. The wings of silence brooded over this
gathering again and again, yet no one felt guilty. There were many
pleasant and home-like sounds--the tintinnabulation of the teaspoons
and sugar-tongs, the pricking of the needle through the stiff linen,
the whirl of a book-leaf, the laying down of card upon card in the
game of solitaire which some one was playing, the bloodless execution
of a paper-knife cutting apart the sheets of a newly-arrived magazine,
the rustling of the Saturday's local paper, delivered just at dusk
and not opened till now, the fresh ink made doubly pungent in the
warm atmosphere till it yielded to the pressure of the summer-like
temperature and dried up--like the rest of us.

"It is odd," said Henry L. Thompkins at length, closing a novel which
he had been reading by slow instalments at Mrs. Marcellus's Saturdays
for the last year at least, and whose finis he had now reached, "that
so many authors write love-stories."

"Why shouldn't they," said Mrs. Marcellus, "when so many readers like
to peruse them?"

"Who likes to peruse them?"

"Why, you do, I should think, else you would have laid down that
book long ago. You've been perfectly absorbed in it: there have
been chapters which made your color come and go with their exciting
interest. I've watched you;" and she shook her needle at him accusingly.

I scarcely remember how it was that when upon this the conversation
became animated it instantly drifted into love-stories and love-affairs
and jiltings and heart-breakings, and all the rest of it. Everybody
had something to say which he fancied had never before been said about
the tender passion; and suddenly a proposition fell from the lips
of Mrs. Marcellus which certainly took the company by surprise. She
said that she wished, just for curiosity's sake, every one present
would tell her about the last love-affair he had had. It would really
be fun: she wished they would. Objections and modest declinings were
unanimous at first, of course, but our hostess insisted; and finally
this conditional agreement was decided upon: that her desire should be
acceded to, provided Mrs. Marcellus would relate her own experience
in this line and tell the company the particulars of _her_ last
love-affair. She instantly consented, though I thought I detected a
flying blush tinge her cheek at the rush of recollections brought about
by the proposal.

The first autobiographer was Henry L. Thompkins himself. Mr. Thompkins
is the principal banker of our place, and, from the almost dead level
of Hurvillian impecuniosity, he is considered to be a man of colossal
fortune. He is very well off in respect to wealth, and has been a
widower for many years. In the grief and loneliness which engulfed him
at the loss of his wife, he told us, he had sought solace in the warm
affections of his sister, a widow lady with a large number of sons,
and had recklessly adopted her boys and promised to be a father to
them--an engagement which had placed him in such a position toward a
lot of young spendthrifts that by actual experience he was now fully
qualified to perform the part of the testy old uncle of Sheridan's
plays, whose principal duty in life is to shake a stick in his nephew's
face and exclaim, "Zounds! you young rascal!" or "Egad! you young dog!"
But instead of one scapegrace nephew he had half a dozen to bleed him.
During one of his visits to his sister, who lived in the West, he found
there, also on a visit, a young lady who made a marked impression upon
him. She was rather good-looking, kind, sensible and quiet in her ways.
For her sake he lengthened his visit: every day her influence over him
became stronger. On the final Sabbath of his stay it happened that
of all the household he and she alone were able to attend service.
The sermon had a distinct bearing on the sanctity of wedded life. As
they walked home he resolved to sound her feelings on the subject of
marriage. He began by saying that he was glad to see she was a friend
of his family, because that empowered him to ask her this question:
Would she like to become a member of it? She blushed, bit her lip
and said, as Heaven was her judge, she would, but she had no fortune
of her own, and she had seen too much of married life in poverty to
dare to enter it under those circumstances. "Poverty!" exclaimed Mr.
Thompkins: "you need have no fear of that. I will see that you have
every comfort--indeed, every luxury." The girl was so startled she
stood still in the street and gazed at him, tears flooding her handsome
eyes. "Oh, Mr. Thompkins," she murmured, "you are the best man in the
world, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart. But I have felt
from the first moment how really noble and generous you are; and it
was only last evening I told Edward, when he took me to the Minstrels,
that I believed if he'd muster up courage to ask his uncle for money
enough to set him up in business, and tell him he wanted to marry and
settle down, that you would do it." The only thing consoling about the
affair was, that the girl never suspected anything. She married his
eldest nephew, whom he has since set up in business three consecutive
times (three consecutive failures following), and the couple are now
rearing a plentiful crop of grand-nephews, who, though still young,
have already developed to perfection the paternal eye for searching out
the main chance, and invariably expect--nay, obstreperously claim--a
full line of costly presents at Christmas, New Year's, Thanksgiving and
all the anniversaries of everybody's birthday, wedding and demise.

We were very glad that Mr. Thompkins so framed the concluding sentence
of his story as to allow us to laugh. We knew very well, from the
character of the second speaker, that we should require all our store
of thrills and shivers for his recital. He was a long, thin, red-headed
man named McLaughlin, who by perseverance had absorbed the most of
the leather and findings trade of Hurville and round about, but was
always talking of the brilliant and exciting early days of his career,
when, fired by a story he had read of the dangers and pleasures of
life before the mast, he resolved to run away, and did run away, to
sea. His love-story was a wild and inconsequent recital, with staccato
stops, of an adventure he had when he was a sailor and his vessel lay
in one of the ports of India for some weeks--at Calcutta, I think.
Anyhow, there were tiger-skins mixed up in it, and elephants' tusks,
and long, moist, horrible serpents trailing after people, and a house
where his lady-love lived which was provided with traps and secret
panels in the walls and other such trifles; and the lady-love was
a native woman who desired to renounce the faith of her people for
him, but was interfered with by a cochineal-colored father of a very
unpleasant sort, who rampaged around twirling the lance he used in
pig-sticking, and often finishing off his enemies with a poisoned
creese, such as you read about. Of course there was nothing left for
McLaughlin but to fight a duel with this unreasonable parent--a duel
which suddenly became contagious, the whole population of Calcutta
joining in it; the foreseen conclusion of the terrific narrative being
of course that everybody was killed except McLaughlin. No one dared
even to smile at this sanguinary catastrophe, for McLaughlin was really
a fiery-tempered fellow, and on more than one occasion had been known
to back his opinions by inserting his hand under his right coat-tail
to find an additional argument wherewith to enforce a similarity of
political views. Nevertheless, our hostess slyly asked if it could be
possible that the native lady who had wished to relinquish the faith
of her cochineal-colored fathers was the amiable--and she might have
said, the essentially pale and milk-and-watery--lady who was known to
the community as Mrs. McLaughlin, and who would have been, save for
the storm, "one of ours" to-night. Mac said, Of course not; but what
was the use of sitting down to talk about the jogtrot events of these
later years, during which destiny and leather had bound him, as it
were, to Hurville? He thought we wanted romance while we were about it.

No. 3 was our military man, an ex-brigadier-general who still wears the
Kossuth hat of his grade, and who holds, to the satisfaction of all,
the berth of postmaster at Hurville. Like most amateur army-officers,
the general thinks that as regards military tactics he is a very
Napoleon, and he has so impressed this opinion on Hurville that we
know full well, though the country at large may not, exactly what
brigadier-general it was by whom the stamping out of the rebellion was
principally performed. In the various engagements which have taken
place between the armies of Europe during the last decade none have had
so satisfactory a termination as they might had our postmaster-general
(if I may so compound him) been in command of the field. The French,
for instance: it seems a great pity that that brilliant people should
not have put themselves in communication with Hurville, if only by
wire, at the time of the disastrous Prussian war. There was our
general, every Saturday evening at Mrs. Marcellus's, winning the most
stupendous victories for them on a large map of the seat of war, with
little flags mounted on pins stuck all over it; and it was really
exciting to see how the general caused the Prussian standard to
retreat at Sedan, the tri-color advancing in triumph at the head of an
overwhelming body of troops rushing upon the enemy _en masse_, hemming
him in on all sides, while the stirring tones of an imaginary brass
band entoned the glorious Marseillaise, its clarion cry proclaiming
once again to _tout le monde_ that _les enfants de la patrie_ had
won another victory for _la grande nation_. "_Marchons! marchons!_
tum-ti-tum--and victory or death!" Oh dear! what a surprise it was
to us all when the cable-despatch came announcing a very different
termination to the fray at Sedan! At first we were incredulous. The
brigadier clapped his hand to his head, seized the paper, ran with
it into a corner and turned his back on us, that he might study the
matter from the strategic point of view undisturbed by uninformed
comment. When he returned he said he saw quite clearly how it was:
the French had failed to advance their left flank--the despatches
showed it--and there was the fatal error. The despatches also showed
quite clearly that the French had no left flank to advance, nor right
either, not to speak of any rear; but the general said he couldn't
help that--they should have advanced their left flank: that was the
only really soldier-like thing for them to do. When armies meet on
the battle-field they should almost always (I think he said) advance
their left flank. Again (to hasten to recent events), here were these
puerile, unspeakable, unutterable heathens, the Turks. Vile as their
moral status was, their military advantages were such that had they had
among their pachas one man who possessed the slightest glimmering of a
conception of the art of war they would not only have held Stamboul,
but they would have advanced their left flank right into the heart of
Russia and set the Crescent flag to flying from the tops of the palaces
on the banks of the Neva.

Naturally, knowing his bellicose proclivities, we were fully prepared
to hear that the general's love-affair was intimately connected with
the war-period; for Mrs. Marcellus herself proposed that the general
should follow Mr. McLaughlin's example and relate, not his last
love-affair necessarily, but his most romantic one. Everybody present
respected the active, self-helpful wife of the postmaster too much
to desire, even for a joke, that the fine sentiments which drew such
a woman into marriage should be made the theme of a story told by a
fireside for the beguilement of a winter's evening. So the general
started by saying that prior to courting and wedding his dear wife
he had been led into an affair of the heart: with a contrite spirit
he confessed that that affair was one which might have had the most
fatal consequences. Luckily, his eyes were opened in time. But had
circumstances been otherwise, had the government at Washington known
the brink on which he stood, he who was now honored by his country's
confidence to the extent of the postmastership of the town of Hurville
might instead be figuring in the reprobatory annals of the republic's
history along with Benedict Arnold and Major André. The conviction
instantly spread among the listeners that we were now to learn that the
general himself on some important occasion had failed to advance his
left flank: if so, we should have him on the hip in future--the left
hip, of course. But the dreadful episode occurred, it seemed, not on
the battle-field, but during the leisure hours when nothing was astir
in camp. It was no question of infantry, cavalry or artillery, but the
old, old story of a pair of brown eyes. "She" was a Southern girl; they
met by chance; he ordered her to walk under the flag; she smiled at him
as she did so; stolen interviews followed; she swore to renounce her
allegiance to the "Lost Cause" and accompany him to the North. Deceived
by her promises, he told her when, how and at what time the corps was
to strike tents and leave the locality--secret information. On the
night prior to the morning they had fixed upon to go the order to march
was countermanded, and the general hastened to his lady-love to tell
her the change of plans. Thinking to give her a lover's surprise, he
crept up to the veranda of her house on tip-toe and noiselessly peered
into the parlor where his enchantress was wont to sit swinging away the
heavy hours in the sweet dalliance of a rocking-chair. To his surprise,
he found she was not alone: a Confederate officer stood by her side,
his arm encircling her taper waist, his lips ever and anon tasting
the honey that dwelt on hers. In intervals between these caresses the
treacherous beauty poured into her lover's ear all she had gleaned
about the change of base of the army from her too credulous brigadier.
A movement made the next day by the Confederates showed they had formed
designs in accordance with the information the girl imparted, but the
Unionist plan having been altered the consequence was in no degree
disastrous to our troops.

The termination of this story found the listeners all very silent. No
one seemed to know what comment to make. From the pained expression
of the brigadier's face it was evident that he still looked upon the
experience as one which but for an accident might have brought danger
to the country and shame and disgrace to himself. Mrs. Marcellus said,
as usual, just the right word. She assured the general that she could
not see in what way he had swerved from his duty as a loyal soldier
in the affair, since the lady had won his confidence by the false
assertion that she desired to renew her allegiance to the flag.

The editor now had the floor. The editor is of course the oracle of the
community, and his newspaper, in the opinion of the entire population
of Hurville--including himself--is an organ which for real power
and earnest writing exceeds any of the monster dailies of the large
cities, whose fame, stupidly enough, extends the length and breadth
of the land, while the _Hurville Gazette_ blushes unseen, claiming
only an average circulation of two thousand; and some say this is
an exaggerated figure. The editor's story was of course thoroughly
characteristic--editorial, so to speak--the recital going straight to
the point at issue without redundant phraseology or extraneous matter
of any kind: it was, in fact, a report, as epigrammatic as a six-lined
local paragraph, boiled down to the utmost limit of concentrated
fact-essence. Yet the gist of the story greatly surprised us. He had
become interested in an anonymous female contributor of love-poems
sent every week to a newspaper he was then editing in the West. At
length, by dint of perseverance, he had unveiled the incognita of the
poetess, in time won her affections, and finally married her. The
general impression was that this must refer to a former wife, of whom
we had never heard, for every one knew the editor's better half to be a
diligent housekeeper, patient mother, a ceaseless sewing-machinist, a
walking encyclopædia of cookery-recipes, and the least literary woman
of our set. Poetry she never read, and she had even been known to sneer
at rhymesters, especially those of her own sex, who, she averred,
might find some better and more profitable way of passing their time
than scribbling nonsense. Yet this change of views, the editor now
assured us, was due solely to the influence of time and a very large
and uncommonly obstreperous family of boys.

The next speaker was the head of the firm of E.T. Perkins & Co.,
dry-goods merchants of the Perkins Block. An extremely religious though
not a bigoted man, generous, good-natured and jovial, everybody likes
him, and we all looked forward with pleasure to hearing his story. He
seemed to have difficulty at first in remembering anything sufficiently
unusual in its incidents to interest us; for, as he said, we all knew
that he had married Mrs. Perkins when he was a clerk in the dry-goods
store of her late father, and had succeeded to the business on his
death, his wife giving great impetus to trade by her own extravagance
in dress, which spread like a contagion among the other ladies of the
town, who until then had been mostly satisfied with nice calicoes and
cheap merinos. As for love-affairs, continued Mr. Perkins, if he had
ever had any before he met Mrs. Perkins he couldn't remember them; but
in a _friendly_ way a curious kind of thing had happened to him many
years ago in New York, when he was in the white-goods department of one
of the big wholesale houses. He was a very young man, not twenty-one,
and trying hard to do right amid the trials and temptations of the
great city. He was a church-member, and in aid of the funds of the
church to which he belonged he had taken one winter a subscription to a
course of lectures to be delivered in some hall down town which has now
disappeared. Seats were reserved for ticket-holders; and so it happened
that he found himself twice a week seated next a lady and her husband
to whom he had been previously introduced by a friend after service
one Sunday evening, but with whom he had had till then but a bowing
acquaintance. Now they fell to chatting of course. He considered the
lady very handsome, though older than himself--about thirty perhaps.
She was of a full figure--might even have been called stout--with
rosy cheeks, pouting lips, laughing black eyes, glossy hair, and a
gay, pleasant manner that was very attractive. Her husband was very
much the senior of his wife, and was cross, ugly, lame and asthmatic.
Sometimes he would leave the hall in the middle of a lecture and go
and sit outside in the cold till it was over, when he would join his
wife, grumbling at everything in general and her in particular. During
these absences Mr. Perkins and the lady had time to exchange many of
their views on various subjects, which were found to be very much in
accord. In brief, the acquaintance was so pleasant that young Perkins,
at the last lecture of the course (the husband having stepped out),
made bold to hint that he would be glad to have it continue, and would
be happy to call, if agreeable. To his surprise, the lady whispered
a few hurried words in his ear of a startling character. Her husband
was exceedingly jealous--utterly without cause, of course--and the
idea of a young gentleman calling at the house in a friendly way was
one that was not to be entertained for an instant. This was a state of
things such as young Perkins had never dreamed possible except in the
exaggerated and wearisome pages of long-winded novels and unreadable
poems in cantos. He immediately exalted himself into a hero of romance,
nor was the sensation diminished when he felt the folds of a bit of
note-paper slipped between his fingers as he shook hands with the lady
at parting. When he returned home he made himself acquainted with the
contents of the mysterious billetdoux, and the sentiment of adventure
was heightened when he read therein a request which the lady must
have written previously to coming to the lecture-hall, since it was
in ink. She desired, she said, to bid him adieu before parting _for
ever_, and as it was impossible for her to do that at her own home,
on account of _something_, she had asked a friend of hers to let her
see him at _her_ house. The call must be made at rather an _unusual_
hour--half-past six in the morning. She was going to see a departing
friend to the _boat_, and she would stop in Hudson street on her way
back. Now, what was more natural, continued Mr. Perkins, for a foolish
young fellow to do than to go to the place on the day appointed? The
hour _was_ rather unusual, and the morning being bitterly cold the
experience was anything but pleasant. The friend's house proved to
be in a very disagreeable neighborhood, and the parlor into which
he was ushered was a small, musty room, with a dirty carpet on the
floor, and otherwise furnished with a few cane-seat chairs and a
rickety marble-topped centre-table, the place being rendered still
more uninviting by a sheet-iron stove which belched forth volumes of
smoke from the unwilling beginnings of a rebellious fire that had just
been kindled in it. Mr. Perkins sat down in the cheerless apartment,
and waited long, half numbed with cold. Having left his home so early,
he was breakfast-less, and that fact did not render his condition any
the more comfortable. The romance of the adventure oozed out of him
from every pore in an almost perceptible stream. The absurdity of
the situation became every moment more painfully apparent, when at
length in walked the lady. But could this indeed be she? Why, she was
completely changed. Instead of the gay, bright, trim, rosy, laughing,
sparkling-eyed lady of the evenings, he beheld a stout, untidy,
sallow-complexioned, faded-out woman of forty. She was old enough to be
his mother--old enough to be ashamed of herself. Never was a youth's
foolish illusion more quickly dispelled. He took her proffered hand
listlessly, and declined the invitation to reseat himself, pleading the
necessity for getting to the store at once. His exit must have been
farcical in its abruptness. The most jealous husband in the world could
have found no occasion for complaint in such conduct, unless indeed
he had changed his views and objected to his wife being treated so
cavalierly. The lady's billetdoux had indeed possessed the essential
element of truth, as opposed to the fiction of poetry: they bade each
other adieu before parting _for ever_.

There may be little enough humor in this story, given thus barely, but
Mr. Perkins's droll tone of voice and the mirthful twinkle in his
eye kept us in peals of laughter while he related the adventure. The
history gained an added zest from the frankness of the narrator, for it
proved once again how little the gold of his nature was cheapened by
the dross of an assumed ultra-holiness, which more than anything else
is repulsive to young people when coming from a religious Mentor. "Was
_you_ ever a little girl?" asks the pranksome Miss Lotta in one of her
nursery-rhyme plays of a particularly cross and crabbed old grenadier
of an aunt. A similar question was never propounded to Mr. Perkins.
No boy in Hurville--even the copper-toed ruffians of the editor's
wife--entertains any doubts of the unadulterated boyishness, at some
remote period, of Mr. Perkins. His pious monitions and enthusiastic
essays to lead the boys in the path of a noble manhood lose nothing
from the knowledge.

It was now the turn of Mrs. Marcellus to speak. We peremptorily bade
her unfold herself, as did Hamlet the Ghost. She smiled and craved
a minute's grace in which to serve us all anew fresh jorums of the
fragrant Kyshow Congou--a tea unparalleled which she imports herself
direct from Oxford Circus in famed London Town--and when the incense
of the fragrant brew rose on the ambient air of the yellow satin
drawing-room our hostess desired us to rattle our teaspoons and clatter
our cups and saucers with a will, as she thought, she said, that a
little confusion would enable her to get through the recital with
more courage. In spite of this request, the most unobtrusive mice
could scarcely have been more noiseless than we as we listened to her
narrative, not a word of which escaped our attentive ears.

"You know," began Mrs. Marcellus, "that it is now five years since the
double wedding of my two darling daughters, parting from whom was such
a dreadful cross for me to bear. Every mother knows how sharp a pang
it gives to transfer to another, almost a stranger--a man whose very
existence six months or a year before was unknown to us--the treasured
being whose smiles and tears have been since babyhood her mother's rain
and sunshine. Ah me! if mothers suffer in this way at the marriage of
one daughter, think how doubly great must the trial have been to me
when I was called upon to relinquish both my girls at once--to see
them both go away on the train, joyous and happy with the men of their
choice, while nothing was left for me but to come back here into the
empty house and begin a new plan of existence with the vivifying and
soul-sustaining element of constant and ever-present love left out! I
don't think any one in Hurville had the slightest glimmering of an idea
of what I suffered."

Mr. Perkins, who sat next her, shook her hand in testimony of the
appreciation of all Hurville of her kindness in never once remitting
(in spite of her private feelings) the pleasant social gatherings which
were so prized by the community; and all present gave audible assent to
the unanimity of opinion on this head.

"You know that some two months before the double wedding I took my
daughters to New York for the purpose of completing the purchases I
considered necessary to furnish each with a suitable trousseau. Much
had been bought here at Mr. Perkins's nice store, almost all the
underclothing which was so much admired by their Boston friends when
the girls arrived at their husbands' homes was made here by the neat
fingers of our Hurville seamstresses, but there were a few things
for which the New York style was necessary, or at least so the girls
thought, and that was the same thing. We were in New York about ten
days, and though every moment, except when we were asleep, was absorbed
by the intricate duties of our shopping, my sense of approaching
loneliness grew deeper and sadder, until it became so overwhelming that
in spite of my efforts to conceal it from them I feared my daughters
would observe my melancholy, and that it would cast a gloom over the
last joyous days of their maidenhood. But they were too full of spirits
and excitement to notice it, and attributed whatever was unusual in my
manner to the exceptional fatigue of the occasion. Finally, our task
seemed finished, and we started for home laden with purchases, leaving
a number of unfinished orders, which were to be sent us by express when
completed. We got to the dépôt rather late, and I found a long line of
people standing before me at the ticket-office window. I was almost at
the tail of an elongated serpent of humanity which wriggled forward
with despairing slowness, and after standing a while I impatiently
left the ranks and went to where my daughters were sitting. 'We shall
never get all that baggage checked in time,' I said: 'I'm afraid we
can't get off by this train.' At that moment a young gentleman who was
awaiting his turn, and was only the second or third person from the
window, leaned toward us and said to me, 'I'll get your tickets for you
if you'll allow me. How many? Three?'--'Yes,' I answered: 'three for
Hurville, please,' offering him the money. 'Never mind that now: wait
till I bring you the tickets;' and I saw him pay for them out of his
well-stuffed wallet. Of course I refunded, with many thanks, as soon
as he brought the tickets, which he did in a minute or two, and I then
hurried away to check the baggage, while the girls went on the train to
secure seats together and get the conductor to let us face each other.

"We had a pleasant day for our journey, but the train was uncomfortably
crowded. A succession of way-passengers, one after another, absorbed
our vacant seat, and prevented the girls from indulging in that
exchange of secret, and in general highly-laughable, confidences
with which young people of their age are always bubbling over. Some
of these local passengers were not very pleasant company, being
frequently encumbered with market-baskets which were not only in
everybody's way, but proclaimed by unmistakable odors the nature of
their contents. Seeing that it was impossible for us to retain the
fourth seat, and having learned from the conductor that there was no
room in the parlor-car, it was really a great relief, as a certainty
of escape from unpleasant companionship, when the same young gentleman
who had kindly helped me at the ticket-office came up and asked if we
had any objection to his sitting there, as he had given up two seats
in succession to ladies, and had been standing the most of the time
since we left New York. Of course we assented, and for the first time
I examined our fellow-traveller minutely. He was very good-looking--a
blond, a style of coloring that I have always particularly admired in
a man when it does not degenerate into effeminacy, as it certainly
did not in this instance. In figure he was tall and slender, with
the erect and graceful carriage of the accomplished soldier, not the
awkward stiffness of the recruit. His eyes were a deep, rich blue,
almost violet--eyes that in themselves would have been sufficient
to make a woman's reputation for beauty: his long silken moustache
shaded from blond to golden red, and was parted fanlike over his
vermilion lips, fragrant and glowing with youth and health. His manners
were essentially those of distinguished society, and his well-cut
gray travelling-suit, his superlatively fine linen, his tiny gold
watch-chain with a valuable pearl set in the slide, his fresh gloves,
his dark-blue necktie carelessly twisted in a sailor's knot, his fine
shoes fitting every curve of his aristocratic foot and covered by
neat cloth gaiters buttoned at the side, his elegant travelling-rug
rolled in a pair of Russia-leather straps, his stylish umbrella, his
fine handkerchief embroidered evidently in Paris in quite a new way--a
fac-simile of a seal in red wax, with a monogram and crest standing
out upon it--above all, his silver-fitted travelling-bag, even finer
than those we had priced at Tiffany's for one hundred and fifty dollars
each,--all gave evidence of a position of something more than ease in
regard to money; while his beautifully-white teeth, his exactly-parted
hair, his scrupulously-tended hands, all spoke of that extreme care
of the person which unmistakably indicates the habit of contact with
people of dignity and good-breeding. Remember, friends, I did not
judge my new friend from the point of view, naturally restricted, of
Hurville. I looked at him from the summits of the forty centuries
of civilization of the European capitals, and I at once adjudged him to
be a man of the world and a gentleman.

"Of course we fell into conversation, and his tone of thought and
mode of expression fully coincided with the elevated character of
his appearance. He was English by descent, he told us, but American
by birth. His reading had evidently been extensive, and his comments
on every subject that arose showed that an original as well as a
scholarly mind had been brought to bear upon it. Yet never was he so
absorbed in the discussion as to neglect any of those attentions which
are so agreeable, even so necessary, to ladies while travelling. His
politeness was constantly on the alert, and his quick eye detected
wants even before they were fully felt, much less spoken of.

"His journey might or might not be so long as ours. He had taken his
ticket for a place he named, a small station in Pennsylvania, where
his father's horses and carriage would be waiting to drive him to the
town where their home was, a bustling lumber-centre back among the
Alleghanies some twenty miles off the railway. His father was the owner
of an immense tract of timber-land there, a property which had come
into his hands many years ago in England as an offset to a very bad
debt incurred by some scamp who had inherited it, but had never seen
it and knew not whether it was valueless or the reverse. For thirty
years his father had paid taxes on these unpromising forest-lands, and
then suddenly there was a rush of enterprise in that direction and the
property became a fortune. The timber was of the finest and the demand
for it unlimited. He was his father's business-representative in the
cities, and had been to Europe also, where he had visited their English
relations, who were very high-toned and all that, but not quite so
well off now as those of the family who were in the plebeian bustle of
successful trade-enterprise in America--to wit, his father and himself.
If the coachman and team were at the station when we arrived (we were
to take supper there), he should go home with him: if the man and
horses were _not_ there, he should find a telegram from his father, in
which case he was to go on to Pittsburg, and would see us at breakfast
in the morning at the place where we changed cars for Hurville.

"In the course of conversation I mentioned to him the peculiar and
interesting circumstance which had called us to New York, the girls
both blushing and ejaculating in a duet, 'Oh don't, mamma!' But I
know so well the heart of youth, both male and female, that I did not
think it right to expose this young man to a misconception in regard
to the position of my girls, more especially as ever since he had
joined us he had sat and gazed at the seat which I occupied with my
younger daughter with a look in his eyes which betrayed the secret of
an inward and sudden yearning which was almost pain. To my surprise,
the announcement of the approaching wedding of both my girls produced
no especial effect upon him. He seemed interested, and indulged in a
little graceful badinage; but this was what struck me as so strange:
every time he spoke to the girls he was smiling and gay and joking,
but every time he turned his eyes on me his expression of face,
his whole manner, changed. His gaze became riveted on my features,
and his soulful eyes lingered there with a fixity that abashed and
disconcerted me. I could not understand it. Why did he look at me so?
Years had passed since last that sort of gaze had been fastened upon
my face, for it was a gaze which unmistakably says, 'You have made
an impression upon me which I cannot resist: everything about you is
pleasing to me.' Try as I would to avoid this look, turn my head as I
might to escape the gaze of those bewitching eyes--even when I closed
my own and feigned sleep--still I felt their tender rays upon me, and
never once did I find it otherwise.

"It is this point of the story, friends, where I feel confession
so difficult. You who have known me for fifteen years, pursuing
unswervingly the prosaic path of duty, will find it difficult to
understand the power of the impression this stranger made upon my poor
heart, widowed in its prime and at that moment about to be further
robbed of all it had to love and cherish. All the years during which I
had employed the most rigid rules of subjection over myself seemed to
vanish like a mist. Every moment I felt more and more strongly a belief
that this new-born passion was sincere, and knew that if it should
really prove so the time when it would meet with full and grateful
return on my part would not be far distant.

"So wore on the daylight hours. Dusk came early, and after the lamps
were lit first one and then the other of my girls wrapped herself in
her shawl, and cuddling together on one seat with the head of each on
the other's shoulders, they both dropped asleep. He and I were now
sitting side by side. For a long time neither spoke. I persistently
stared out of the window at the flying landscape, almost invisible now
in the increasing darkness; but I could feel, though I did not even
glance at him, that he had turned in his seat, his elbow resting on
the back of it, his cheek on his hand and his eyes on me. At length
he bent over toward me, and in so low a tone of voice that the girls
could scarce have heard it had they been awake he whispered, 'Will you
permit me to say a few words to you?'

"'I have no objection,' I answered coldly--'always with the proviso
that what you have to say to me is something which it will be no
derogation of my dignity as a mother of grown daughters to hear.'

"'Could you, madam, for a moment believe me capable of saying anything
unworthy you, unworthy myself?' he exclaimed reproachfully. 'Oh no:
I do not think I have given you any cause to believe me other than a
gentleman. I am not in search of a love-affair, believe me, nor have I
hitherto been considered as at all of an impressionable nature. I am
perhaps not quite so young as I look, and certainly the opportunity of
meeting beautiful and fascinating women has not been lacking to me.
I know scores of such, and still I have borne hitherto an unoccupied
heart. Now, I -- But I am tongue-tied: I fear to give offence. I know
very well you would not let me tell you that you have inspired in me
one of those passions which, born in an instant, often shape a whole
destiny--that I love you as fondly as a man ever loved a woman. No,
no, do not stop me. I say that I do _not_ make such assertions, because
I know you would not allow me; but there is one thing I will make bold
to do--one favor I must crave at your hands. Will you grant it?'

"'What is it?'

"'This: that you will let me count myself among your friends. Give me
that foothold, and something I feel here in my innermost heart tells
me that by it I may lift myself to a niche in yours which no other man
now fills. Let time try the sincerity of what I say. All I ask of you
is that if I ever come to Hurville (as I surely shall if I'm alive),
you will allow me to call upon you merely as a friend: I ask no more.'

"'Are you sincere in this wish?'

"'As Heaven is my judge, I am. In less than an hour this train will
arrive at the station where, in all probability, we shall have to
part. I cannot endure to think that in a formal shake of the hand at a
railway-dépôt you and I are going to separate, never perhaps to meet
in this world again. Both of us have made plenty of such impromptu
acquaintances before now, and have seen the end of them approach with
the utmost indifference, and never given another thought to these
chance friendships of a passing hour. But I feel in my innermost heart
that this meeting between you and me was brought about by the hand of
Providence itself, and for a purpose that we at this early stage of
our knowledge of each other cannot divine. I will not, I cannot, see
it fade away. Will you give me leave to come and see you at Hurville?'

"'With pleasure,' I replied.

"He sprang to my side as I assented, pressing against me so closely
that I withdrew myself hastily lest it should become an open embrace.
Yet even as I repulsed him he smiled fondly on me and said in a tender
voice, 'Thank you, my friend: this is all I ask. I shall soon see you
again, and I warn you I shall see you often. I am willing to take my
chances for the future. Time will try me.'

"'Come, come!' I answered: 'these hints and insinuations are mere
folly. It would be disingenuous in me to pretend not to understand
them; but let them stop here: let us banish all nonsense. I am older
than yourself by some years, and when you become better acquainted
with me you will find that there is nothing in the least extraordinary
about me. I am simply a middle-aged, might even be called an old,
woman, wrapped up in a pleasant but very unromantic set of friends,
and with all the love of my nature buried in the grave of a dead past,
except what survives in the persons of those two sizable young ladies
who sit nodding opposite.'

"'Every word you say,' he said, again drawing near to me in an
affectionate way, 'but confirms the impression you first made upon me.
I think you are a woman of the noblest nature, the soundest sense,
the warmest heart, I ever met. I admire you as much, as deeply, as
I respect you. But this you must permit me to say: you are doing
yourself a great injustice by laying out for yourself a loveless
future. You will feel the heart-void very powerfully when your
daughters leave you. You are _not_ an old woman, even in years, while
in appearance you are not even middle-aged: no one would dream of your
being the mother of these young ladies. Now, is it right in a woman so
exceptionally endowed with affections as you are to say you will never
love again? Leave the future to take care of itself: you do not know
what it has in store for you.'

"With that he pressed my hand, and I pressed his in return, and then
drew away from him, and, covering my face with my veil, nestled,
half frightened, half joyous, into the window-corner. The emotion he
had caused me filled my eyes with tears, yet whether I shed them in
happiness or sorrow I could not tell. There was the dead love, the
girlhood's sweet dream so cruelly finished, my long conviction that
on this earth never again would the delicious oneness of wedded life
be mine. Could it really be that I had inspired in the bosom of this
thoughtful young man the sentiments which lead to the devotion of one
soul to another? Even as I questioned thus my inner self I raised my
veil, and meeting the fixed gaze of those lovely eyes they smiled an
assent, and I sank back, trembling in the ecstasy of my new-found joy.

"We arrived at the supper-station, and with his usual gentlemanly
care our friend helped us from the car and escorted us into the
supper-room. He seated us at a table, and turning down a chair for
himself he whispered in my ear, 'I'll go now and see if there is a
despatch for me. If there is I shall just have time to jump on the
Western-bound train. That is it, there: it is only waiting for this
connection. If there is no despatch and my father's man is here, I
will come back and have supper with you before starting home. In any
case I'll see you soon in Hurville.'

"I was too agitated to partake of food. I tried to sip some scalding
tea, but could not, and rising from the table told the girls to pay
for the supper when they had finished: they would find me outside on
the platform. I heard the whistle of the departing westward train, and
as its ponderous weight thundered over the gleaming rails I saw that
he was in it, kneeling on a seat and peering anxiously out, trying, no
doubt, to get a parting glimpse of me. Just as he was whirled away I
saw the flutter of a handkerchief, and knew that at the last instant
he had recognized me where I stood.

"'Where's our friend?' said one of the girls, who had now finished
supper and come out. 'I thought he was going to have supper: he turned
down a chair.'

"'He left on the Western-bound train,' I answered.

"'I suppose he got the despatch he expected and hadn't time to come in
and say good-bye.'

"It was the first time a secret had ever come between me and my
daughters. I felt distressed, and even guilty.

"'Girls,' said I when we were again seated in the train, 'what did you
think of our travelling-companion?'

"My elder girl thought he was a perfect gentleman, evidently rich,
very well bred, very handsome, and, strange to say with all this, a
scholar. She had no doubt he moved in the best society wherever he

"My younger girl's impression was quite different. In spite of all
he had told us about his wealthy father and his lumber-forests, she
said she didn't believe but what if the truth were known he would be
discovered to be a New York drummer in the button business or perhaps
a Western man in the ham trade.

"'Well, my dears, I am going to tell you something about him that will
surprise you. He is not what you have said, Minnie, nor what you have
said, Jennie, nor what he himself said: he is simply nothing more nor
less than a pickpocket!'

"The girls were first horrified, then they laughed: the farce of a
thing is very apparent to heedless youth. No doubt the other youthful
individual was laughing at the farcicality now. As for me, I could
scarcely see the joke. The matter was not so serious as it might have
been, however, for the bulk of my money was stitched in the bosom of
my dress; but I had kept out about four hundred dollars to pay for a
set of silverware which was not ready at the last moment, and that
money my friend had seen in my pocket-book when I paid him for the
tickets. I discovered the loss at the supper-table almost the instant
he left my chair, and my rising and going outside was the natural
impulse to stop a thief. I knew now only too well when the transfer
had taken place: it was at that blissful moment when this new pattern
of a Romeo had pressed up to the side of his silly and elderly Juliet
in a tender half embrace. The youthful philosopher was quite right in
saying I did not know what the future had in store for me: I had not
the remotest conception that in less than an hour it would disclose
to my dull mind that I had met a pickpocket in the guise and with the
apparent feelings of a gentleman--not to say a lover."

The termination of this recital naturally drew forth comment. Henry L.
Thompkins said he really thought better of his nephews now: at least,
they never picked pockets. McLaughlin startled the company by declaring
that he had met this very man some thirty-five years ago when he was
lying off the Bahama Islands--he was sure of it: and even an exact
computation, which showed conclusively that the individual in question
could not have been born then, was not sufficient to shake him in his
belief. Mr. Perkins observed that he hoped the young man might meet
Christian influences, and so reform: it was a pity he could not have
had Mrs. Marcellus's Christian friendship, for it might have been his
salvation. The brigadier's conclusion was that the whole plan was a
scheme of deep revenge which had a much broader basis than the mere
purloining of a pocket-book. It was the old story of national hatred on
the part of England. This man was of English derivation: that he was
an American born was no matter--was, in fact, most probably untrue.
But Englishmen could not bear, even after the lapse of a century, to
think that this grand empire was not under the control of the British
crown. The military facts connected with the war of the Revolution had
been so galling: Washington's masterly strategy in always advancing his
left flank had proved, as it ever must, the utter annihilation of the
redcoats, and had occasioned a series of defeats hard then and now for
the proud-spirited British nation to bear. Depend upon it, this pocket
had been picked in a spirit of international revenge. When Cornwallis--

Here the editor advanced _his_ left flank unexpectedly by asking Mrs.
Marcellus if he might put the story in print: the fellow should really
be hunted down, if possible, even at this late hour, and brought to
punishment. But our hostess would not consent to this, and motioned to
me with a smile to begin my confession. But just at that moment the
good-night lamp was brought in, and never since then have stories been
in order at Mrs. Marcellus's Saturdays.




A new-born babe has been defined as a lump of possibilities: it is a
mass of rudiments, the unfolding of which constitutes its growth. But
_protoplasm_, which, unlike the babe, is a structureless substance,
of undefined form and apparently void, is the basis of _all_ life,
and contains within itself the germs of an infinite development. The
microscopist sees in it only a transparent mass, the chemist so many
atoms of carbon, hydrogen, oxygen and nitrogen. But while seemingly
the same in its chemical constitution, it differs immeasurably in its
properties--always distinguished, however, by the soul of unrest that
is within it, by its never-ceasing, self-sustained and self-generated
movements. Protoplasm makes the saliva which moistens the morsel of
bread; protoplasm bides its time in the new-laid egg; protoplasm weaves
the tissue of the most highly endowed brain: its agency, in short,
is visible in all the meanest and the supremest acts of life. No
difference can be detected between its highest and its lowest forms.
Yet difference must exist. The most primitive forms of life consist of
simple specks of protoplasm, mere masses of organic slime, in which the
particles enjoy all the life-functions share and share alike. As the
babe develops into the man, so in ascending the scale of life, from the
protoplasm of the infusorial am[oe]ba to that of a Newton's brain, it
is step by step along a constant development and separating of dormant
powers. There is nothing in the man that was not in rudiment in the
babe, and so also does the am[oe]ba in its microscopic speck represent
the life-power of a universe.

In the separation of the protoplasm for various specific duties very
early is a part of it set aside to constitute a so-called nervous
system. The simplest form of this system occurs in the sac-like
infusoria known as ascidians. This nervous apparatus is composed of a
grayish central mass and certain white fibres which radiate from this
mass to the outer surface of the sac that constitutes the body of the
ascidian. The central mass contains much of very active protoplasm: it
is for the ascidian the chief source of all nervous power and action,
and is the simplest form of a so-called "nerve-centre." In the higher
forms of life the nerve-centre is very complex, but is really formed
by superadding small centres, like to the single central nerve-mass
of the ascidian, one above the other, and binding them together with
innumerable threads of white matter. The white threads seen in the
ascidian are the earliest expressions of the white cords of the higher
animals which every one knows as nerves. It is the function or office
of the gray nerve-centre to originate waves of nervous influence,
whilst to the white threads is given the duty of conducting such waves
or impulses. The two parts may be well compared to the cells and the
conducting wires of a galvanic battery. There are always at least two
sets of the nerve-threads or conductors--one leading from the surface
of the body to the nerve-centre, and the other from the centre to the
exterior of the organism. Those fibres which start from the surface
carry impulses to the centre, and are known by the scientist as
afferent nerves: in the higher animals they conduct to the centres of
consciousness impulses which give rise to sensations; hence they are
often known as _sensory_ nerves. The nerve-threads which carry impulses
away from the centre to the outer regions of the body are known as
efferent nerves, because through them motion is produced as _motor_

To the primitive organic slime, which is the lowest form of life,
consciousness can hardly come. The ascidian with its distinct though
simple nervous system is a different and much higher being. In its
microscopic world some floating particle touches it roughly: the
ever-sensitive end of the afferent nerve thrills; the vibrations pass
along the nerve-fibres to the central nerve-mass and provoke it into
action: forthwith it sends down the efferent nerve a strong impulse
which travels out until it reaches a mass of contractile tissue known
as a muscle and causes it to shorten. In the ascidian, however, the
limits of nerve-life are very narrow--no eye to see, no ear to hear,
no separation of one kind of sensation from another, if indeed there
be sensation at all, for we do not know whether the ascidian lives
like the plant, to itself unknown, or whether it enjoys a twilight
of semi-consciousness, feeling dimly its own existence and that of
surrounding objects. The movements which it makes do not seem to
emanate from consciousness, but always to originate in the contact
of some foreign body with the exterior of its organism. The central
mass of nervous protoplasm appears never to flash of its own volition
nervous energy to the muscle, but only when aroused by an impulse from
without. All movements seem to be _reflex_--that is, produced by an
impulse passing up from the surface along the afferent nerve to the
central mass, and thrown or reflected back, as it were, along the motor
nerve to the muscle.

Such simple reflex movements occur in all, even the highest, animals
as the most primitive expressions of nervous energy. The exigences
of lives fuller than that of the ascidian demand, however, other
movements, whose complexity is continually increasing as the scale of
life is traversed. Keeping pace with this elevation of function is
a progressive setting apart of certain parts of the nervous system
for certain purposes. In other words, as function or office becomes
more complicated and more separate and particular, so also does the
anatomy or structure of the nervous system. The whole nerve-life of
the ascidian dwells in one cell or central point and a few fibres: that
of the man is divided up between some millions of similar cells and
fibres, each set aside for the performance of only one act or class
of actions. Special powers everywhere require special structure. From
the nervous system of the ascidian to that of man is a transition like
that from the universal workman of a barbarous society to the complex
factory of modern civilization, in which one man does only one little
thing, but does this perfectly.

The general structure of the nervous system in all vertebrates from the
frog to the man may be thus described: The cerebral hemispheres, or
_upper brain_, a large double central nerve-mass which has no distinct
nerves; the _lower brain_, which is also situated within the cranium,
but below the cerebral hemispheres, and is provided with afferent and
efferent nerves; and a _spinal cord_, which springs out of the lower
brain and has an abundant supply of nerves connecting it with all parts
of the body.

Of these great central nerve-tracts the spinal marrow is the simplest
in construction. It is the "silver cord" of the old Hebrew poet, and
owes its whitish appearance to the innumerable nerve-like fibres which
run up and down or across to bind all parts of the cord together or
to pass out from it into the nerves. In the central portions of the
spinal marrow is a continuous tract of gray matter which is composed
of an infinitude of protoplasmic masses closely resembling the central
nerve-mass of the ascidian. This gray matter is indeed a series of
such nerve-centres, each capable of discharging energy precisely as
the central nerve-mass of the polyp does. The white fibres are the
conductors of impulses: during life they are continually occupied in
carrying messages to and fro between different portions of the spinal
gray matter, or up and down--that is, to and from the brain.

In order to study the functions of the spinal cord the physiologist
takes a frog from the ditch and with one sweep of a sharp knife
beheads it, or, what is the same thing, severs the spinal cord just as
it enters the skull. No pain is produced, or at most a momentary pang.
The spinal cord is thus isolated from the two brains, and all conscious
sensibility is lost. The heart continues to beat, and life may go
on for hours, but all the muscles are relaxed and the whole body is
without feeling. Hang the creature up, and the long legs dangle passive
and motionless. Bring, however, a cup of strong vinegar slowly upward
from beneath the leg, and the moment the irritating liquid touches
the toes the foot is drawn up. The parallel of this experiment may be
repeated in the hospital ward. Cross the dangling, insensitive legs
of that man whose back has been broken by some one of the murderous
engines of modern civilization, and strike it smartly just below the
knee with the edge of the hand, when out flies the leg; or as the
patient lies in bed tickle the soles of his feet and see how they are
drawn up, although all sensibility has vanished. Such movements as
these in the frog or in the man are evidently similar to the wrigglings
caused in the ascidian by the contact of an external bit of matter.
They are, in a word, reflex: to produce them an impulse has travelled
up the sensory or afferent nerves to the gray matter of the spinal
cord, and has been reflected back along the efferent or motor nerves to
the muscles.

It is possible that in the ascidian the impulse which causes a reflex
movement may be dimly perceived, and therefore awaken some sort of
consciousness, but the man whose spinal cord is broken by accident or
disease feels nothing below the injury, even if his feet be burnt to
a crisp. It is plain that any faculty of consciousness which existed
in the central nerve-mass of the polyp has been taken away from the
spinal cord of the vertebrate, to be concentrated and perfected within
the skull; or, in other words, that in the man, and also in the frog,
consciousness and ordinary reflex movements have been separated, the
one pertaining to the higher, the other to the lower, nerve-centres.

These unconscious reflex movements are in man of prime importance and
frequency. The machinery of conscious movement is far more complex than
that of reflex action, and every new cog-wheel, so to speak, involves
a loss of time as well as of motion. Most of us do not appreciate the
period of time between the willing and the making of a movement, yet
the astronomer has to take note of it, and, finding that it varies in
individuals, allows for the "personal equation" of the observer. We
all recognize that one man is slower than another--_i.e._ that his
physical machinery of thinking and doing moves more slowly than does
that of his fellow. Every sportsman must have paralleled a little
personal experience of my own. Last fall I shot at a flying quail
between which and myself at the time of firing a sturdy oak tree raised
its trunk. The bird was put up, aimed at, and the impulse sent by the
will to the trigger-finger: before the impulse reached the finger I
distinctly recognized that the bird had dodged behind the tree, but
the countermand sent by the conscious will to the finger could not
overtake the first order, and so, in defiance of my wishes, the gun was

There are many processes necessary to comfortable human life for which
consciousness is far too slow in its operations. Had the eye to wait
for conscious perception the dust which whirls in the air would soon
blind it; but, as Nature has arranged the mechanism, when the speck
approaches the eye the lid shuts instantly through a reflex act, even
though the man be unconscious or sight has been lost. It will be
noticed that in this movement of the eyelid a purpose is served: it is
as though the man perceived the speck and willed to close the lid in
order to protect the eye. An action done to serve an apparent end is
spoken of by the physiologist as "purposive." It would seem at first
that such an action implies consciousness, but it has just been shown
that this--in regard to the eye, at least--is not the case, and before
this paper is ended it will be demonstrated that adaptation for a
useful end is no proof that an action is directed by consciousness.

If, instead of putting the feet of the prepared frog spoken of a few
paragraphs back in acidulated water, we drop the irritant upon the
thigh, the corresponding foot is raised at once and bent upward so
as to brush off the acid. If the foot has been cut off, the bleeding
stump will still be bent upward, and if it be too short to reach the
irritated spot, then the other foot will be raised and a determined
effort be made to remove the offending liquid. All these movements
certainly look as though the frog felt the acid and endeavored to get
rid of it. Not so, however. Drop this same frog into water which is
gradually heated. The batrachian does not try to get out, but sits
motionless until he is boiled. Surely, if he felt the drop of vinegar
on his foot, much more would he feel the boiling water bathing his
whole surface. Curiously enough, if the acid be put upon the leg of the
frog while in the water, the movements will be the same as if he were
on the table.

These experiments and the experiences of daily life clearly show the
truth of the assertion recently made, that the fact that an action
has a purpose does not prove its connection with consciousness. If
Evolution be correct, there is no difficulty in explaining the doings
of the beheaded frog. It is a law governing nervous function that
every time an action is repeated the tendency to repeat the action
is increased, until at last habit becomes a governing law, and under
certain circumstances actions, at first wilful, become unconscious.
The first earth-born batrachian, perhaps, felt during the first hour
of his existence some irritant on his leg and scratched it away. The
next hour the process was again gone through, and so on until the frog
was gathered to his fathers. His children found themselves a little
more disposed to scratch than was their progenitor; and at last, so
well accustomed did the spinal cord become to move the feet when the
irritant touched the leg that the motions were carried out without
waiting for the will to command, and the particular reflex movements
which astonish the late-born human philosopher became a fixed habit.

In such movements as have been described are to be found the simplest
form of _automatism_, the term being used to express the doing of
actions which are performed for an end, but in which consciousness
plays no part.

Having studied the spinal marrow, the physiologist, leaving this
untouched, cuts off the upper brain of the frog, leaving the lower
brain in union with the spinal cord, and unharmed. A frog so mutilated,
sitting upon a leaf or tuft of grass in a swamp, would be apt to be
passed unnoticed as anything extraordinary. He sits perfectly still
when approached, but touch him and he leaps off vigorously. If an
obstacle be in the way, he does not strike it, but springs above,
below or to one side as circumstances may favor. If dropped into
the water, he swims as well as ever, and if the water be gradually
heated, he soon endeavors to get out. If, as he sits upon a board, the
latter be quietly and not too suddenly moved, he does not jump away,
but continually shifts his position, so as to maintain the centre of
gravity in its proper place and to keep the normal erect posture.
Stroke the back of the frog gently and he croaks responsively, as if
the titillation called back pleasant memories of caresses received in
some lover's tussock-bower. The answer to the stroking is so certain
that, as suggested by Goltz, a chorus of brainless frogs might be
obtained whose batrachian voices would delight the nerves of old
Aristophanes with a triumphal burst of _Brekekekéx! koáx! koáx!_

Many other things will the brained frog do--almost enough to convince
a superficial observer that the cerebral hemispheres are a luxurious
superfluity to the physical and mental well-being of the average
inhabitant of the swamp. But no. A little watching shows that for
this seemingly intelligent creature past, present and future are
alike blotted out. Let the frog alone and it sits motionless, buried
not in the profundity of its thoughts, but in the abyss of its
thoughtlessness. In the midst of abundance it starves--not, like
Tantalus, because it cannot gratify its desires, but because it has no
desires to gratify. It feels no hunger, or if it feels hunger seeks
no food. A perfect automaton, it moves when touched, it croaks when
stroked, it answers to a multitude of external irritations, but when
untouched and left to itself it is as a lifeless clod until the sun
dries it up and the winds blow it away.

The fish whose cerebral hemispheres or upper brain has been taken away
has, like the frog, all conscious perception blotted out, but, unlike
the frog, it is in perpetual motion. Stopping not for food, it rushes
through the water, avoiding obstacles, but never ceasing its mad race
until muscle-power or nerve-force fails because of excessive use and
lack of nourishment.

The cerebral hemispheres can also readily be removed from birds. The
pigeon so mutilated presents phenomena similar to those offered by the
frog. He remains perfectly quiet, balancing himself readily on his
perch, but with drooping eyes and sunken head, motionless so long as
undisturbed. Move his perch, and he struggles to maintain equilibrium;
fire a pistol near him, and he starts, only to fall back at once into
his apathy; approach him in the dark with a bright light, and he gazes
at the candle with a fixed stare, and sometimes follows its movements
with his head; strike at him from the front, and he will draw back;
pinch his toes, and he moves. It is therefore plain that he in a
certain sense sees, hears and feels. Yet when perishing with hunger he
never pecks at the corn which he sees placed before him, and if left
alone dies. If, however, the food be placed in his mouth he swallows it
eagerly, and by care can be kept alive for an indefinite period.

Removal of the cerebrum has been repeatedly practised also upon the
rabbit and the guinea-pig. The mutilated rabbit sits motionless whilst
undisturbed, starves in the midst of plenty, cries out with its
peculiar pathetic scream when pinched, draws back when ammonia is put
to its nostrils; in a word sees, hears, feels in the same sense as
does the pigeon, and, like the pigeon, undisturbed remains passive
until death. Tread, however, upon the rabbit's foot, and perhaps with
a little scream it darts forward in a furious race. Once started, it,
like the brained fish, does not stop until exhausted or until it has
dashed its head against some obstruction, for, unlike the mutilated
fish, it does not have the power of avoiding obstacles.

Such are the phenomena which in the various species of animals follow
the removal of the true brain. Many of the acts are seemingly so
purposive, and certainly so complicated, as to suggest that they
must be conscious. It has, however, been shown that the fact that an
act is apparently purposive and complicated does not prove that it
originates in consciousness, and certainly in the brainless animal the
past, present and future have been blotted out. There is absolutely
no conscious memory, else the needed food would be taken when offered
and spontaneous movements would occur. It is hard to conceive of
consciousness without memory, and it is certain that no purposive
act can be directed by consciousness when memory does not exist in
any degree or form. If all memory be lost, though consciousness be
preserved, that consciousness would not have the knowledge which should
enable an animal to perform a complicated purposive act; nor could
it acquire knowledge by experience, because each movement would be
forgotten as fast as produced. The phenomena exhibited by the brainless
animals must therefore rest upon some other basis than consciousness.
The first point to be observed in looking for this basis is that
movements never occur so long as there is no external irritation. The
frog, the pigeon, the rabbit, all maintain the same absolute repose
unless the impulse comes from without. The fish is a seeming, but not
a real, exception to this rule. The frog, the pigeon, the rabbit,
all are quiet on the land, because their surface is not irritated:
the fish in the water rushes forward, because the play of the liquid
is all the time irritating the exterior of the body. Throw the frog
into the water, and it is seized with the madness of the fish; toss
the pigeon in the air, and it dashes forward; set the rabbit once in
motion, and its course also is a headlong fury. Placed under parallel
conditions, these various animals exhibit parallel phenomena, and
remain quiet unless disturbed by surface-irritations. The facts show
that for action in the animal whose upper brain has been removed some
external irritation must generate the impulse, which travels upward to
a nerve-centre, and then brings into activity certain masses of nervous
tissue (ganglia), which, thus aroused, send impulses out to the various
muscles without the intervention of consciousness. Movements generated
in this way are _reflex_ or _automatic_. In brainless[2] animals the
reflex actions are not different in their essence, but only in their
degree, from those performed in the frog with a cut spine; or, in other
words, the acts originating in the lower brain are reflex and similar
to those arising in the spinal cord, only more complicated and more
apparently purposive.

The complexity of the reflex movements which are produced through the
lower brain indicates a corresponding complexity in the apparatus
concerned. In accordance with this, we find that whilst only one
kind of nerves capable of carrying impulses from the surface to the
nerve-centres enters the spinal cord, to the lower brain pass not less
than five distinct varieties of afferent nerves, which carry impulses
of as many different characters to the centres. Contact is necessary
to arouse reflex movements through the spinal cord. The effect of a
pistol report upon a brainless animal demonstrates, however, that its
nerve of hearing is capable of carrying to the middle brain an impulse
which stirs that centre to action. The brainless pigeon follows with
its head the lighted candle: its nerve of sight is therefore capable of
taking part in the creation of a reflex movement. The same bird will
eat largely when appropriate food is placed in its mouth--an indication
that the nerve of taste is also active. In a word, to the middle brain
the nerves of sight, of hearing, of tasting, of smelling, as well as
those of common sensibility, bear impulses which find their appropriate
nerve-centres and give origin to complicated reflex movements. Partly
in the number and variety of the afferent nerves, and partly in the
number and variety of the nerve-centres crowded into the lower brain,
lie the causes of the great intricacy of the automatic movements which
originate in this region.

Of all the acts performed by the brainless frog, fish, bird or mammal,
the most difficult to understand are those connected with standing,
jumping, swimming, walking, flying, running, etc.; or, in other words,
with equilibration, or the function of maintaining the equilibrium.
Why does the brainless frog, the automaton, shift his position as the
board upon which he sits is slowly tilted? There are apparently no new
contacts of the skin: the motion is so quiet, so gentle, that it would
seem as if there was nothing to produce irritation of the surface of
the body so as to cause reflex acts. If it be true, as is asserted
by some observers, that taking off the skin of the legs of the frog
(a procedure which causes no pain, as the frog has no consciousness)
prevents his shifting himself to maintain his equilibrium when his
resting-place is moved, it is plain that the surface-irritations
which cause the reflex alterations of position in the brainless frog
originate in the skin of the legs and through the sense of touch. There
are, however, certain facts which indicate that the impulses under
discussion are not of so simple a character.

Before inquiring into these facts it should be observed that there
is no movement which the uninjured frog ever performs to restore
his equilibrium that the brained frog does not also make with equal
promptness. Lay it on its back, on its head, twist its legs into
unnatural positions, fix it as you may, so soon as released this
unconscious automaton restores itself to its sitting posture. This
being the case, it is plain that all the machinery of equilibration
must be present in the mutilated frog, and must therefore be situated
in the lower brain and its dependencies; and, further, that when the
uninjured frog consciously attempts to maintain the erect position or
to alter the gait, it simply calls into action the machinery provided
for it in the lower regions of the nervous system. What is true of the
frog is also true of the man; and the question naturally arises, What
is the character of this machinery which the conscious will employs?
This apparatus consists of two parts: first, certain exterior parts
which are affected by disturbances of the equilibrium, and which when
thus excited send up impulses to the lower brain; beyond, certain
nerve-centres which when aroused by impulses derived from the external
parts send back in a reflex manner impulses to the various muscles,
which by their contraction produce motion or rectify the mistakes
of position. Touch has much to do with equilibration: sight also
has much to do with it. There is a disease of the spinal cord known
as locomotor ataxia which destroys the sense of touch in the legs.
A person suffering from this disorder is said to be ataxic. When a
completely ataxic man puts his feet upon the pavement he feels nothing.
Under these circumstances the man is unable to walk with his eyes shut.
Even if the ataxia be not complete and some sense of feeling remain,
the gait becomes so uncertain that progression is impossible. The
pavement feels nearer or farther off than it is, and the result reminds
one of his experiences in going up stairs in the dark and stepping
out at the top in the belief that another step exists. Long before
sensation is completely paralyzed the power of walking in the dark is
entirely lost by the ataxic; for, indeed, the man, who has still as
much muscular power as ever in his legs, may be unable to walk under
any circumstances or even to stand unaided by a cane. The movements are
vigorous, but uncontrollable: the legs fly about in all directions,
refusing to obey at all the most strenuous efforts of the will.

The loss of the sense of touch in the skin is not, however, the sole
or even chief reason that the ataxic man cannot walk. I once saw a
patient who could march very well by night or by day, although the
skin of his legs was so dead that a live coal would scarcely awaken it.
The sense that is wanting in locomotor ataxia is that form of general
sensibility which is known as the _muscular sense_; that is, that sense
or feeling which tells the lower brain exactly how much a muscle is
contracted, and when to urge it more, when to let it relax. This is
evidently a guiding sense, of whose action we are barely conscious,
but of whose existence there is no doubt. We do not feel a muscle
contract ordinarily, but we do so when attention is directed to a
muscle at work. Thus we judge of the weight of a body by the amount of
force which our muscles must put forth to lift it. Any one can satisfy
himself by a very simple experiment that the judgment of weight is not
founded upon pressure on the skin. Lay the hand upon the table, place
the heavy body upon it and try to judge of the weight. Again, whenever
we endeavor to estimate accurately how heavy a body is, we raise it
again and again into the air, evidently that we may feel the muscles
contract again and again, and by repeated efforts judge how much of
force they put forth.

The phenomena of ataxia are of great importance as corroborating the
experimental proofs spoken of a few pages back, which show that walking
is automatic and not simply performed by a conscious power of the will.
Thus the ataxic may be able to walk with his eyes open, when he cannot
even balance himself erect with his eyes shut. If the conscious will
really did by a direct effort produce walking, it should be able to
control the movements by itself, and the ataxic man should be able to
walk although impulses from the exterior of the body no longer reached
his lower brain. The man who turns a cog-wheel himself is independent
of external power, but the man who directs a clockwork moved by a
spring can only push back the stop and release the spring: if the
spring be broken he is powerless. The impulses from the exterior are
the springs of locomotion, and all the will can do is to withdraw the
checks and call the machinery of walking into action. When the external
impulses are no longer transmitted to the lower brain walking becomes

As already shown, general sensibility, including in the term the
sense of touch and the muscular sense, is of prime importance in
equilibration, but it is unquestionable that the nerves of the other
senses carry to the nerve-centre impulses from the external parts
of the body which are necessary to the highest development of the
function. The partially ataxic man can walk with his eyes open,
although he does not feel the floor, because sight replaces touch.
The blind man, certainly, cannot balance himself so well as he whose
eyes are perfect. We all know that the sight of a yawning abyss or the
gazing upon whirling objects is prone to produce giddiness.

Some experiments made by the English physiologist Crum Browne show that
there must be guiding impulses which are connected with equilibration
besides those already discussed. The observer mentioned found that
if a blindfolded man lies on a table with a movable top placed upon
a central pivot, he can judge in regard to the movements lateral or
vertical, even if they be made so carefully and slowly that the man
is perfectly quiescent. The subject under experiment is almost always
able to decide correctly not only the direction of the motion, but also
the angle through which the motion has extended. It is possible that
the guiding impulses under these circumstances originate in all parts
of the body. Thus, when we lie with the head downward we are at once
sensible of a feeling of fulness or pressure due to the gravitation
of the blood and other liquids of the body toward the head. Position
undoubtedly affects the gravitation of liquids in all parts of the
body: the man whose forces are reduced by a low fever gets a congestion
of the back of the lungs if he lies too long upon his back. It may be
that this flow of fluids toward any unusually dependent part of the
body makes an impression upon the nerves of touch, which pass through
all parts of the organism, and that in this way peripheral impulses are
generated which reach the lower brain.

On the other hand, the extreme delicacy of perception of movement
which some persons evince when laid upon the table-top would seem to
require a more delicate apparatus than that just spoken of; and there
are many facts which point to a peculiar structure in the inner ear
as having connection with equilibration. If in the frog the disk back
of the eye be wounded deep enough to affect the nerve of hearing,
the creature falls upon one side, entirely deprived of its power of
balancing itself. Perfectly similar phenomena are seen not only in
the mammals operated upon by the physiologist, but also in human
beings, in whom wounds of the nerve of hearing, as well as ruptures
of blood-vessels in the inner ear, produce a peculiar vertigo, with
staggering and loss of power which have been mistaken for apoplexy.
Some years since there was under my professional care a man who had
been shot in the face, the bullet passing backward toward the inner
ear. In this case there was complete loss of hearing on the injured
side, and a peculiar giddiness, with staggering gait similar to that
which follows hæmorrhage into the inner ear. The bullet had certainly
penetrated into the aural region, and the vertigo was evidently like
the deafness due to an injury of the inner ear. In the inner ear of all
animals are the so-called _semicircular canals_, which are provided
with membranous walls, and are filled with liquid. At the end of each
of these canals is an enlargement known as an _ampulla_, upon which
is a delicate expansion of nerve-tissue derived from the nerve of
hearing. These semicircular canals are so placed that every motion of
the head must produce disturbance of the liquid contents of at least
one of them, and consequently alterations of pressure on the nervous
tissue in the ampulla. The structure and peculiar arrangement of these
canals and their contents suggest very naturally that they have some
other function than that of aiding in hearing, and that they are in
some way connected with equilibration--that they are, as it were, the
spirit-levels of the body, and that by the shifting of their contents
impulses are constantly sent up to the lower brain to direct it in
the maintenance of position. This suggestion is confirmed by the
results of experiment: in the pigeon and in some mammals the canals
can be readily reached and divided. Such injuries to them are followed
by great disturbance of the motor function of the animal, the nature
of the disturbance being chiefly dependent on the seat and character
of the injury. Repeated somersaults backward or forward, bizarre
contortions, spinning around worthy of a whirling dervish, loss of the
power of balancing on a moving perch or board, staggering gait,--these
and other similar phenomena mark the disturbance of equilibration
produced by wounds of the semicircular canals.

The balancing of the body which occurs even in standing, much more that
of walking, running or flying, is the result of a very complicated
series of movements, numerous muscles antagonizing one another
by regulated contraction, so that just the right position may be
secured. To preserve the equilibrium innumerable unfelt impulses are
continually passing from the eyes, from the semicircular canals, from
the various muscles employed, up to the nerve-centres in the lower
brain, where they are, as it were, assorted and reflected back as
co-ordinated or arranged impulses to all parts of the muscular system,
and produce just such contractions as are required for the purposes of
equilibration and locomotion. When a child is learning to walk it is
simply educating this intricate machinery and developing its latent
powers. Very much as the will of man aids a setter in developing the
natural instinct to hunt, so does the child's will direct, check and
in every way assist the complicated and delicate machinery which
presides over locomotion. Perhaps a better comparison is to be found
in the drill-sergeant training and educating his squad of men, who at
first are utterly unable to obey his will, but who by his reiterated
efforts are finally so trained that they move as one piece in strict
obedience to his word or go through complicated man[oe]uvres without
command. No wonder the child requires so many days of effort to get
all its delicate machinery of walking, running, etc. so trained that
it works smoothly and without conscious effort of the will. But as the
training becomes more complete, the lower brain becomes more and more
independent of the conscious will which resides in the upper brain or
cerebrum, until at last the automatic action is so perfect that walking
without consciousness is possible. Very many of my readers have no
doubt in their younger days, when hard pressed with a lesson, walked
to school studying as they went, their attention riveted on the book,
their feet carrying them along the well-known pathway. Under such
circumstances consciousness does not direct progression. Walking in the
sleep is only one step beyond this. In the days of Antietam a friend
of the writer's, worn out with the forced marching, whilst on guard as
a sentinel, erect and soldier-like in posture, slept until the dark
lantern of the relief officer appalled him with its sudden flash. Once
after a long tramp I myself, laden with a heavy pack, nearing home,
trudged in the unconsciousness of sleep along the oft-trodden road. In
the cavalry raids around Richmond during our late war it was not very
unusual for men and beasts to become so exhausted that both would go to
sleep on the homeward night-march when they were straining all their
powers to escape. The whole regiment asleep, horses staggering along in
loose order, men swaying to and fro in their saddles, when there was a
sharp turn in the road it was necessary to post sentinels to waken the
passing ranks, which otherwise in the unconsciousness of sleep would
have continued right on into bush or brake. Indeed, in one instance
that came to my notice a horse with an officer on his back did in this
way walk over a precipice some twenty feet high.

With the knowledge which we have acquired the feats of somnambulists
are stripped of all mystery. The various accounts of these
sleep-walkers vary in regard to the eyes being open or shut, and no
doubt the fact also varies, the wanderer sometimes going about with
open, sometimes with shut, eyes. In either case the sleeper passes from
place to place because the automatic apparatus of locomotion is set
in action by a dream, and is perfectly able to perform its function
unaided by consciousness. I think it will be found that difficult
somnambulistic feats are performed with the eyes open, or, in other
words, with every unconscious sense in fullest activity. Most of us
have read of, if not witnessed, the perilous walkings of somnambulists
over housetops and in difficult places, and wondered that a man in
his sleep should be able to pass such narrow ledges with safety. The
fact is, that often in these cases the walker escapes _because_ he is
asleep. The delicate automatic mechanism presided over by the lower
brain when well trained performs its function with marvellous accuracy,
while often in times of danger it is baffled by consciousness: fear
seizes on its centres and paralyzes their efforts; giddiness whirls
it into a fatal slip; conscious will hesitates in its selections and
is lost. In the somnambulist all attempt at direction by the will is
laid aside, and the clockwork moves along undisturbed, carrying its
possessor through deadly peril that sickens him the next day as he
looks upon the place over which he has passed and hears the story of
his nocturnal wanderings.

Walking is only one of the numerous acts of life, and there are various
other automatic actions, commonly mistaken for conscious and wilful,
which originate in the lower brain. Enough has, however, been said to
illustrate the way in which the lower nervous system works, and some
of the more important of these automatic acts not now spoken of will
naturally be brought into the foreground in another article, in which
it is proposed to discuss automatism in the higher manifestations of
passion and thought.

  H.C. WOOD, M.D.

[Footnote 2: The term _brainless_ is here applied to animals whose
upper brain has been removed.]



I know of no brighter, sprightlier, more sensible and energetic young
woman than my fair cousin Sue, who having recently graduated at an
eminent female college, is universally regarded by her fair companions
as a miracle of learning. Sue has several times filled the poet's
corner of the county newspaper of late, and the other day read a poem
before her maiden friends which they unanimously pronounced good enough
for the ----; whereupon Sue concluded the matter by furbishing up
her rhymes and sending them to the editor of that popular magazine.
Presently they came back to her enclosed in that ugly bit of printed
paper with which every reader who has had any literary aspirations
whatever is acquainted, in which the editor "regrets" that owing to the
pressure on his columns, etc., he cannot "make the enclosed article
available." Sue came to me with the printed paper in her hand, looking
more disturbed than I had ever seen her.

"Cousin," said she, "you are a favorite with the editors: can't you
teach me how to succeed with the flinty-hearted creatures? I've spent
more time at school than you; my teachers assured me that I had
literary talent, and ought to improve it; I take the greatest pains
with my poems, and yet they always come back to me with only these
printed regrets."

I took paper and poem and read both. "Sue," said I at length, "I want
one of those long after-dinner talks that we used to have before you
went to college; and if I probe a little deep, as I used to, you must
remember that it is the 'galled jade' that winces."

Not long before I had been in the den of the managing editor of one
of the great metropolitan dailies, and the conversation had turned
on the mass of unavailable communications that flooded his office on
the arrival of every mail. "What is the proportion of accepted to
rejected manuscripts?" I inquired.--"One in a hundred," he replied,
and continued: "It is strange what crude ideas people have as to the
needs and capacities of a daily journal. For instance, in this pile
of 'unavailables' are poems, sketches, love-stories, theological
disquisitions, scientific treatises, book-reviews, political squibs,
biographies and essays on civil and social reform--not one rising
above commonplace, and the majority the veriest trash imaginable;
and this is sent to us in the face of the fact, which ought to be
apparent to all, that we have a regular corps of trained writers and
correspondents."--"And who are the producers of all this matter?" was
my next query.--"Well," said he, "an editor who is harassed by them
three hundred days in the year soon gets to classify them correctly,
I think. There are three great classes. First, the dilettante
scribblers, young men and young women of elegant leisure, who think
literary distinction 'very nice,' and plunge into authorship for a
little pleasant excitement or in the hope of winning fame. There are
often glimpses of talent in the productions of this class, and with
hard work they might succeed; but they only skim the surface, and the
result is that their work doesn't reach even the respectable. The
second class are those who without special talent embark in literature,
expecting to make a living by it. The third class I pity: it consists
of those who have some literary talent and a desire to improve it,
but who lack the gift of expression or the constructive faculty, or
some other requisite, and are simply incapable of producing anything
worth putting in print. It is this class of incompetents that put the
greatest strain on an editor's sensibilities, for their articles are
almost, but never quite, available. If I could reach these literary
aspirants I would whisper in their ears that modern journalism is
an organized, elaborated profession, and that every conductor of a
better-class journal, whether newspaper or magazine, has a corps of
trained writers at command who to literary talent add the experience of
years, and whose contributions are generally satisfactory. Yet it by
no means follows that first-class articles from outside correspondents
are neglected: on the contrary, it is because an occasional nugget
is found that readers are employed to examine their miscellaneous
correspondence. There now!" he added, laughingly, "I have given you
some points for a sermon to the scribbling public, and as you have
plenty of leisure you ought really to improve the opportunity."

I told all this to Sue, adding, "I am no sermonizer--not, at least,
since my lamentable failure at the obsequies of poor old Tabby--but
I feel in the mood for a few plain, honest words on this topic this
evening, and only wish I had a larger circle of hearers. I shall not
take up any of the points mentioned by my friend the editor, for he
has exhausted the subject: he has told you why many fail. I wonder if
you have any idea what it costs the successful writers to win, because
if you have not I have a friend who is entitled to be placed in this
category, and I should like you to know what it cost him to attain
his present position. He was eighteen when he discovered an aptitude
for literary work by publishing a sketch in the village newspaper,
and he was twenty-nine before he succeeded in gaining the slightest
public recognition. These eleven years he spent in study, travel, close
observation and literary labor, writing home letters to provincial
newspapers whose editors published them readily enough, but forgot
to send the author either money or thanks; and when he knocked at
the door of the paying journals, as he did occasionally during these
years, he was dismissed with the same politeness and complacency that
you complain of. All this time, remember, he was living the life of a
recluse, shunning general society and almost an anchorite as regards
the sex: at the same time he was well aware that his friends, who
were all engaged in the general scramble for wealth, regarded him
pityingly as a man of a chimerical turn of mind, who, despite their
efforts, _would_ continue to the end in the profitless pursuit of a
phantom. Notwithstanding, he held to his purpose with a tenacity of
will worthy of the old Scotch Covenanter from whom he descended. His
final success, he has often declared, was owing to a lucky chance. When
twenty-nine years of age he wrote a book, and succeeded in finding
subscribers enough among those interested in his specialty to publish
the work. There was evidence of talent in it which somehow attracted
the attention of an editor in Massachusetts, conductor of a high-toned
literary journal there, who wrote it up, and was followed shortly after
by a New York editor of equal standing: this aided little in selling
the book, but it gave him literary standing--a coign of vantage but
little appreciated by young writers. Our friend next wrote a sketch
half romantic, half historical, and armed with it gained a hearing
from the editor who had favorably reviewed his book, and who in turn
introduced him to the managing editor of his journal. This gentleman
was induced by the author's representations to read the manuscript
himself, was pleased with it and inserted it in his columns, together
with many others of similar character; and as they were unique both
in subject and style they were widely copied and commented upon, and
placed the young author in the high-road to success.

"Now, Sue, it is possible that with equal exertion of will,
perseverance and endurance you may win equal success; but suppose you
do, will it pay? I grant there is no joy greater than that of the
literary neophyte when his work first obtains recognition in quarters
where recognition is worth something; but this is pretty nearly all
there is to be gained in authorship. Ease, position and wealth are to
be left behind when one embarks in it in earnest. I question if there
can be found a civilized people that takes less interest in literature
and literary workers than do Americans. Congress, that intensely
practical body, has persistently refused to protect or encourage them,
reasoning, evidently, that while the author may be a pleasing and
graceful ornament to the kingly power, he is a useless appendage to a
republic. Again, it is not for the interest of a publisher to encourage
American authors, whom he must pay for their work, for he has the cream
of English literature at his command without money and without price.
As to the American public, it doesn't read books. It prides itself on
being well read, I know, and it is in magazines and newspapers, but
the figures in our publishers' offices prove incontestably that of our
fifty millions of people between one and two thousand only are regular
buyers of books. Forty years ago the case was different: then wealthy
men bought books, as they now buy pictures, to encourage American art,
and the genial sun of their patronage called out such men as Bryant,
Cooper, Irving and Hawthorne. But under the changed conditions of
our times what writers have risen up to fill their places? Brilliant
magazinists, versatile journalists, skilled producers of the lightest
of light literature for summer-resort consumption, I grant, but few
distinctive names; for one might as well expect roses to bloom in
January as a true national literature to grow and bloom under the
blight of universal neglect and indifference.

"But I am carrying my generalizations too far: it is my purpose rather
to narrate for your benefit some cases of individual hardships on the
part of authors that have come under my own observation. My friend, the
accomplished magazinist of whom I spoke, wins the wage of a grocery
clerk; and as nothing could induce him to leave his profession--it
is his life--he will continue to eat the bread of poverty all his
days. I know authors who have fared far worse than this--who would
be glad to exchange all the fame their books have brought them for
money to meet the obligations incurred in their publication. I have
a friend who was not a tyro in authorship when he came up to New
York with a newly-completed book seeking a publisher. He first gave
his manuscript to a leading publishing-firm, which, after keeping it
three weeks for inspection, informed him in the politest manner that
their reader did not advise them to undertake the publication. He then
sought another publisher equally eminent, who in due time consented
to take the book on the following terms: He would publish it, give
it the benefit of the firm's imprint and push its sale through the
trade for a certain commission, the author to pay the entire cost of
the stereotype-plates when delivered, and also the cost of printing
and binding the first edition. The publisher admitted the hardship
to authors of this plan, but declared that since the decline of the
book-trade it had been almost universally pursued by publishers as a
means of ensuring themselves against loss. But, as it happened, my
friend succeeded in making better terms with another publisher. In the
course of their conversation the latter remarked that he could offset
the author's experience with a much severer one, and proceeded to
relate the following incident, which he declared to be strictly true:
Not long ago a well-known lady writer made arrangements with a large
New York publishing-house to publish a book for her. In return for the
firm's name on the title-page she agreed to pay the entire cost of
the plates and of the first edition of two thousand copies, and the
usual per cent. commission for introducing the book, and in addition
not to call for any settlement of accounts until the entire edition
was exhausted. She did this the more readily as she supposed that the
books would be sold in two or three months at the farthest. Time flew
on, the book-trade was dull, and the last half of the second year was
approaching ere fifteen hundred copies had been sold. She was in urgent
need of the money, and to obtain it sent a buyer into the market who
bought for her the remaining five hundred copies, paying the publisher
his commission on them: in this way she secured payment for the entire

"In these instances I have only hinted at the hardships endured
by authors. I mention them not to excite your sympathy for the
guild--although none are more deserving of it--but to show you
plainly some of the lions in the way of the literary aspirant; and
I regret that I have not in my audience the ten thousand brave,
capable young men and women in our country who are looking forward to
a literary career--some in the hope of winning distinction, and some
as a profession to be used in bread-winning. Certainly, nothing will
justify man or woman in embarking in it but the possession of the
true _afflatus_, the rich gift of imagination, constructive power and
expression which we call literary genius."

Happy is the preacher who sees the seed he sows fall into good ground!
Not many days after our talk, happening to glance into the parlor, I
saw Sue in suspicious proximity to Fred Alston, the young bank-cashier,
and only last night she blushingly announced her engagement to him,
assuring me that she was content to shine in a literary way only in the
home-circle. Fred is a good fellow, besides being desperately in love
with her, and, as he hasn't a particle of literary talent himself, will
set all the more store by Sue's.

  C. B. T.



_Frank Beverly._ Now that I have a house of my own to furnish, I find
that I have a strong reaction of taste in favor of the things I was
used to as a boy. It is all very well to go into other people's rooms
and see fantasies in sage and olive-greens and peacock-blues--to admire
stained floors and French Turkey rugs, tiles and dadoes, decorated
curtains and portières (which latter invention, by the way, I call a
mere nuisance, always in the way, letting in draughts and depriving you
of the comfort of closed doors). So I tell Ethel that for my part I
don't want any of these things.

_Mrs. Beverly._ What Frank really wants he does not know himself: he
is simply too bigoted and old-fashioned to move with the new currents,
but all the time has nothing better to propose. We have bought the
house, and have gone twice to look at it. I know exactly what would
suit me. I should like to have it done up with inlaid floors and
wainscotings--tiles in the fire-places, with brass fenders and
andirons. The dining-room should be in oak and brown and gold--Queen
Anne's style--the parlors in blue and olives, and the bedrooms in

_Mrs. Markham._ That would be perfectly lovely. One may always be
certain of your taste, Ethel.

_Philip Markham._ I confess I don't see any marvellous display of taste
in furnishing rooms like everybody else's.

_Mrs. B._ But the general styles now-a-days are so thoroughly artistic!

_Philip M._ I suppose they are. I shall be very glad, however, when
this ever-lasting refrain of artistic household furnishing is done
with, and people settle down into their surroundings and really get to
living. Then, after a little wear and tear, one may find comfort in
these new houses: everything is too fine at present. Now, the other
night at Gregory's dinner I sat with my back to the fine Eastlake
fireplace and was scorched by the blazing wood-fire. I suggested to
the servant that he should put a screen behind me: you know the house
is full of Japanese screens. On my word, had I proposed burning the
house down Mrs. Gregory could hardly have made more of it. She told
everybody, as the most delicious joke, that Mr. Markham wanted to put
one of her exquisite silk hand-embroidered Japanese screens before the
fire! Of course I grinned and made light of it, but I was roasted alive
and made almost ill.--Now, that would just suit you, Ethel, to have a
fine house and then begrudge the use of it to people.

_Mrs. B._ But the idea of spoiling one of those lovely screens in that

_Philip._ What were they made for, any way?

_Mrs. B._ For decoration.

_Frank B._ I go into very few houses which suggest actual living. The
drawing-rooms are Fairyland to look at, but might as well be a show
suite in upholsterers' shops. I had a pride and pleasure in my mother's
house which had nothing to do with the furniture: its charm and
elegance linger in my memory like a perfume. There was no room which
did not contain a low chair belonging to my mother, with a work-table
and work-basket beside it. She always sat, a living presence, in either
parlor, dining-room or library. I heard her once tell a lady-friend,
"I always stay down stairs and arrange my occupations here, that I may
be within reach of my husband and sons." You need not doubt but what
the first impulse of any one of us on entering the house was to seek
her. We were often all grouped about her at once. When I go into the
lifeless, dreary houses of most women, I am amazed that they do not
cultivate this habit of my mother's.

_Mrs. M._ There is a good deal in what you say. A set of rooms has
quite a different air when the mistress habitually sits there. When I
am making visits I have a sort of reluctance to ring the bell at houses
where I feel certain of being forced to wait twenty minutes in a dim,
empty parlor.

_Mrs. B._ But then a lady should be ready to receive her guests

_Mrs. M._ Of course she should, but, all the same, she never is ready
save on her regular reception-days. She sits up stairs in her own room,
and it seems absurd to wear a nice dress when she is not certain that
anybody will come. She slips, naturally, into her wrapper in order to
enjoy her fire and easy-chair, then when the bell rings has a hurried
toilette to make.

_Mrs. B._ I shall make a point of sitting in my parlor.

_Mrs. M._ Those delicately-furnished rooms grow shabby and faded very
soon when lighted and used freely.

_Frank B._ You see we come back to my notion that in order to live
elegantly one must have a house furnished in a certain solid,
old-fashioned way.

_Philip M._ Exactly. Nothing is more inelegant than being over-fine.
True elegance consists in the fitting of our surroundings to our needs.
There is no elegance in extravagant furniture, which must claim the
first place in one's thoughts and forbid real comfort and ease. I don't
spend many days at home in the course of the year, but when I am in the
house Jenny has a bad time of it, and actually suffers for her chairs
and sofa. I like to "glorify the room," as Sidney Smith used to say. I
_will_ have light everywhere; I _will_ have the good of my furniture:
if the fire is too hot to bear, I will put a screen in front of it; if
the screen is too fine, it is direct impertinence to me: I consider
myself more precious than the screen.

_Frank B._ Speaking of Sidney Smith, he had good views respecting
household comfort. Every guest in his house was formally introduced
to a particular easy-chair, table and reading-lamp in the parlor, and
informed that said chair, table and lamp were to be sacred to his or
her individual use so long as he or she remained.

_Philip M._ Now, that was a man's idea. Men are the only judges of what
is pleasant and convenient in a house: women know nothing whatever
about it.

_Mrs. M._ (sarcastically). Oh dear! no!--nothing at all!

_Philip M._ Women always want to save in essentials that they may
waste in non-essentials. If a woman orders a dinner--that is, unless
she has had a long and valuable experience under some sensible man's
directions--she will stint you in everything except entrées and dessert.

_Mrs. M._ For shame! Women are so lectured, so tutored, about
extravagance, that they feel the necessity of making their money go as
far as it can. Most of us experience a positive sense of guilt when
we assume a masculine prerogative and insist upon having the best of

_Philip M._ Indeed! So far as my limited experience goes--

_Mrs. M._ It is all very well to be sarcastic about us poor women, when
you know all the time that you are dependent upon us for everything
that makes a house pretty and cheerful. You men know just one thing
about furniture--how to spoil it; and one thing about meals--how
to eat them. As to knowing how to live, that is wholly a feminine

_Frank B._ I quite agree with you, dear Mrs. Markham, but then how few
people do live! _Mrs. M._ My instinct tells me what you mean--that
there is either vacuity or an air of bustle and haste about our lives;
that we waste our strength upon what is not worth having when it is
attained; that we are never satisfied with to-day, but are always
longing for the morrow; that we surround ourselves with beautiful
things, but fail to get the worth of them in improved ideas and culture.

_Frank B._ Precisely.



    Ten years ago, when she was ten,
      I used to tease and scold her:
    I liked her, and she loved me then,
      A boy some five years older.

    I liked her: she would fetch my book,
      Bring lunch to stream or thicket--
    Would oil my gun or bait my hook,
      And field for hours at cricket.

    She'd mend my cap or find my whip--
      Ah! but boys' hearts are stony!
    I liked her rather less than "Gyp,"
      And far less than my pony.

    She loved me then, though Heaven knows why;
      Small wonder had she hated:
    For scores of dolls she had to cry
      Whom I decapitated.

   I tore her frocks, I pulled her hair,
      Called "red" the sheen upon it:
    Out fishing I would even dare
      Catch tadpoles in her bonnet.

    Well, now I expiate my crime:
      The Nemesis of fables
    Came after years. To-day old Time
      On me has turned the tables.

    I'm twenty-five: she's twenty now,
    Dark-eyed, pink-cheeked and bonny:
    The curls are golden round her brow;
    She smiles and calls me "Johnny."

    Of yore I used her Christian name,
      But now, through fate or malice,
    When she is by my lips can't frame
      Five letters to make "Alice."

    I, who could joke with her and tease,
      Stand silent now before her;
    Dumb through the very wish to please--
      A speechless, shy adorer.

    Or if she turns to me to speak
      I'm dazzled by her graces:
    The hot blood rushes to my cheek;
      I stammer commonplaces.

    She's kind and cool: ah, Heaven knows how
      I wish she blushed and faltered:
    She likes me, and I love her now.
      Dear! dear! how things have altered!


There is a prevalent impression that Spiritualism is on the decline,
but proof to the contrary exists in the fact that no class of books
commands such rapid and extensive sales as those which narrate
Spiritualistic experiences and discuss Spiritualistic phenomena. Mr.
Howell's last novel is one of the many instances of such popularity.
To any one who can remember back about thirty years _The Undiscovered
Country_ revives vanished impressions, renews old problems and brings
up portraits of fervid enthusiasts of every age, all bent on getting
an answer to the unanswerable. That was the time when all over the
country a favorite social amusement was for a company to sit about a
table of light weight in a dusky room, each with his or her fingers
lightly pressed upon the board and just sufficiently touching their
neighbor to form a connecting link. In this position the "spirits" were
patiently waited for: known as they were to be inconsistent, capricious
and elusive, their eccentricities were regarded as sacred. The least
sound which disturbed the stillness was interpreted as a message from
the other world: any inclination to rock on the part of the table gave
evidence that the company was surrounded by invisible but powerful
spiritual forces. Sometimes everybody waited in vain: the spirits might
be invoked from their vasty depths, but would not come. Again, the
faithful believers in the group were the victims of an outrageous hoax
on the part of some one of the circle who could creak joints or tip
tables. But there would come times when patient waiting and intense
belief were rewarded--when tables walked, when floor, ceiling and
furniture all resounded to startling raps. Then came the opportunity to
leap the gulf from time into eternity--to measure distance and compare
finite with infinite knowledge.

"Mr. A----," the medium would observe, "there is a spirit who wishes to
communicate with you."

Mr. A---- would be thrilled with a sort of ghastly gladness. The
angelic visitant was anxious to define his personality by the aid of
the Spiritual alphabet, and turned out to be Mr. A----'s father. In
life he had signed his name William C. A----, but after suffering the
great change the middle initial had been altered into H. But what
matter? Such trifling inaccuracies were not counted.

"Miss S----," the medium would say, "I see a spiritual form standing by

"Is it my mother?" miss would cry, the tears gushing to her eyes.

"I think it is. She is dressed in gray silk, with lace about her
throat. Her hair is dark, and she wears some sort of ornament among the

"Are you sure the hair is dark?" cries Miss S----, almost in hysterics.
"My dear mother's hair was quite light, a beautiful golden."

"I see more clearly now," the medium would reply: "the hair is golden."

"A little gray on top?"

"Yes, a little."

"Oh, my mother!" Miss S---- would shriek, gazing beyond vision to find

There was much to disappoint--much, in our experience at least, even to
disgust--the seeker after truth in these séances. Still, in spite of
a general easy method of pronouncing it all humbug, there were things
which could not be explained. A light table might be tipped by visible
hands if two people agreed, but how could a dining-table, so heavy that
a servant could not move it alone, contrive to rise a foot from the
floor, and then, when pressed downward with all the strength of which
three stout men were capable, remain there, poised in air?

But the strangest manifestations were cheapened by the gross
impositions of some of the professional mediums. I distinctly remember
the advent of a noted Spiritualist from Hartford who was to conduct a
séance in a house where I was staying. He looked about the parlor with
a critical air.

"I don't see the right kind of a table here," he said to his host.

"I supposed any table would do."

"Far from it," was the reply. "The spirits require to be absolutely
suited in all minor details before they will appear."

In order to suit these fastidious visitants from the other world all
the light tables in the house were produced.

"This will do," said the medium, choosing one; and, sitting down and
placing his hands upon it, he rocked it violently to and fro. "This
will do," he said. He did not find it necessary to explain why he
needed a table which his lightest touch could control. I distinctly
recall the séance which followed. There was a small, rather pretty,
lady present, with long curls on each side of her pale face. She
averred that she was always accompanied by at least three spirits:
they were in the habit of clustering like stars over her head. She
also confided to us the grisly fact that when she retired to rest at
night the headboard of her bed actually resounded with knockings.
Sometimes she was even prevented from going to sleep, and was forced to
expostulate with her visitors, who, when implored to be quiet, would
come to her pillow, press it gently, and then subside.

I also remember a noted medium of that day, a Mr. B----, who went
from place to place accompanied by his daughter Virginia, a girl of
nineteen, and, as I recall her, possessing remarkable beauty. Unlike
Mr. Howell's hero, Mr. B---- was something of a charlatan. He boasted
of his powers as a magnetizer, and would not admit defeat even in the
face of failure. His daughter was his favorite subject, but, unlike
Egeria, had no distinct powers of her own. I have frequently heard Mr.
B---- say that he could call his daughter from no matter what distance.
At such times he merely uttered her name and half closed his eyes. As
soon as she could traverse the distance between her and her father
Virginia was certain to enter, already in a magnetic sleep. Almost
every one having first or last witnessed the phenomenon of magnetism,
it is not worth while to dwell upon it.

I had a friend by the name of Abbey whose condition during the five
years before his death interested even while it repelled me. He had
even as a boy been excessively delicate in health, and in manhood he
broke down under the pressure of excessive mental labor. Could a medium
or magnetizer have got hold of him his hallucinations or clairvoyant
powers might have been made a source of considerable profit. He was
calling in my study one day when one of his trances came on. He had
been exceedingly anxious to get out of town by the three-o'clock train,
and this necessity pursued him even into his unconscious state. He lay
on my lounge facing a bookcase and a window whose shade was pulled
down. At his back, and quite at the other end of the room, was a small
clock on the mantel, with a face so indistinct that I was obliged to
get up and peer directly into it in order to find out what time it was.

While I was sitting by the poor fellow he began to moan and mutter. "I
must get away," said he, "or I cannot take the three-o'clock train. It
is already twenty minutes past twelve."

I took my watch from my pocket. It was twenty minutes past twelve. But
how did he know it? He had been lying before me with his eyes closed
and his ears apparently impervious to sound for about two hours.
Twenty-five minutes later he remarked, "It is a quarter to one." He
kept along with the time, and when three o'clock came was in a state of
wild delirium over his loss of the train. Had he looked at his watch
every other moment for the past three hours he could not have kept a
more accurate account of the time.

I saw him frequently in these trances, which sometimes lasted two
days. I have held before his closed eyes a succession of photographic
portraits, each of which he has recognized without seeing, uttering
the name of the person. Once I laid down the pile beside him, and
his hands, which always had a trick of feebly wandering, sought the
pictures. I waited to see what he would do. He was at the time deeply
infatuated with a young lady whose carte-de-visite I had shown him. By
some inscrutable instinct he contrived to select it from the others.
His face lighted up when he held it, and as long as I permitted his
hand to close upon it he wore an expression of rapture. When I took it
away he seemed to suffer a violent shock.

I could now and then, when he was in this state, arouse his mind and
persuade him to take an imaginary walk. At such times he frequently
startled me, used as I had become to his phenomenal powers of vision,
by seeing something which was actually taking place half a mile away.
Once he said, "There is the water: I see six sails. What is it they
are doing on the tower of Mr. B----'s house? _Oh! oh! oh!_"--here he
became violently agitated--"_the scaffolding is giving way! There is a
man falling!_" At that very moment the scaffolding on the tower of Mr.
B----'s house did give way and a man did fall--without injury, however.

Abbey was ardently attached to his mother, and during her final illness
was in terrible distress of mind. Toward the last, worn out with
anxiety and watching, he lay down on a couch in the sick room, and at
once went into one of his trances. This was at nine o'clock in the
evening. The rest of the family, whispering together, declared that the
sick woman, although unconscious, was better.

"She will die," muttered Abbey, who was apparently far out of hearing,
"at twenty-five minutes to four."

His mother did die at twenty-five minutes to four the next morning.

A thousand curious circumstances connected with poor Abbey are fresh in
my memory, but I refrain from giving more. Although he was under the
care of several of our best physicians, he was never long free from his
malady. Strange to say, it never affected his general health. He died
finally, not from any disease, but quite by accident.

  A. T.


 Byron. By John Nichol. (English-Men-of-Letters Series.) New York:
 Harper & Brothers.

"The quiet, uneventful life of a man of letters" is a phrase not
infrequently used, generally by way of excuse for some dull biography.
It is doubtful, however, whether the life of the poet, the novelist,
or even the scholar, is not apt to be quite as varied and full of
incident as those of men whose callings are considered more active and
adventurous, while the interest that attaches to the relation of it
is almost certain to be more personal and concentrated. The career of
the statesman or the warrior is commonly merged in the events of his
time; that of the discoverer or the inventor furnishes matter for a
chapter in the history of scientific progress; the mere "man of the
world" is one of the least important figures in the shifting scenes
and disconnected pictures of which his recollections may supply the
only memorial. But the man of genius whose writings we have studied
with a constant sense of the influence of mind upon mind--his mind
upon ours, stirring our emotions, quickening our thoughts, enlarging
our conceptions--becomes in his biography a subject for close
investigation and analysis, in which every fact is significant, actions
and impressions have equal importance, efforts and achievements,
success and failure, are viewed as the direct outcome of character and
intellect, all events have a common centre, and the world's affairs are
noted only in reference to the individual, whether, like Rousseau, he
has given them a strong impulse, or, like Dante, has been the victim
of their turbulence, or, like Goethe, has stood apart in the attitude
of contemplation. The office of such men is to reveal the needs and
aspirations of humanity; their voices rise above the general din in
musical plaint or exultation; their utterances lead us to examine
and understand ourselves; and hence their lives, even when outwardly
tranquil, cannot fail, if fully and rightly portrayed, to enchain
our sympathies. But it is the exception, rather than the rule, when
genius is linked with an apparently serene or commonplace existence.
It is the fashion now-a-days to deride the notion that a man of genius
is almost necessarily deficient in prudence, and consequently little
fitted to steer his way securely amid the ordinary perils of life.
Nevertheless, the fact remains that in the great majority of cases the
most highly-gifted natures appeal as strongly to our pity or tolerance
as to our admiration, that under similar circumstances their errors and
misfortunes have been greater or more frequent than those of commoner
natures, that with them the "inward storm and outward strife" in which
the great lesson of life--"das schwer-verstandene Wort"--is learned--

  Von der Gewalt die alle Wesen bindet
  Befreit der Mensch sich der sich überwindet--

are not lighter, but more severe and destructive, than with others.
And in cases where there has been a conjunction of high intellect and
a fiery temperament with outward conditions equally remote from those
of ordinary life, the biographer is provided with materials which the
novelist would not dare to grapple with, and which the tragic writer
would scarcely need to mix with any stronger element of his art.

That Byron's was one of these rare cases no one will be inclined
to deny. His genius, if not of the highest order, was marvellously
brilliant and fertile, and almost unparalleled in the potency of its
charm. His nature was chaotic, his position full of incongruities, his
fame an eruption, his career meteoric. "No one ever lived," remarks
Mr. Nichol, "who in the same space more thoroughly ran the gauntlet
of existence." And all the experiences of his life, all the contrasts
in his character and his intellect--his nobleness and his baseness,
his sincerity and his affectations, his giant power and his puerile
weakness--are reflected and exhibited in his works with a directness
and completeness that do not belong to the self-mirrorings of any other
writer, not excepting Rousseau. Never has there been a great poet who
was less of an artist; never one who could so little transmute an
experience or embody a thought as to give it a universal significance;
never one whose productions, however diversified in form, have an
equal sameness in theme and tone, or present themselves so palpably
as fragments of an autobiography. We follow him in his travels, we
are witnesses of his thinly veiled adventures, we find his cravings
and caprices, his piercing mockeries and fantastic imaginings, in the
Selims and Conrads, the Manfreds and Cains, the Harolds and Juans,
whose forms he assumes as the disguises of a masquerade, we receive
the outpourings of his confidence in every mood and on every topic--we
gaze, in short, incessantly into the inmost recesses and watch all
the wild and wayward movements of a heart that is never at rest and
that never shrinks from exposure--and, if strongly impressionable,
we yield to the spell, accept the magic, echo the cry, undergo the
same sensations, and identify ourselves with the being that has taken
possession of us by this strange and violent egotism. One thing more
must be remembered in accounting for the intensity of Byron's influence
on his contemporaries, the wideness of its diffusion and the suddenness
of its decline: this personality, which seems at once so peculiar and
so self-engrossed, is nevertheless the child of an epoch, itself full
of agitations and contradictions, feverish and tumultuous yet wearied
and disgusted with its past excesses, ardent and aspiring yet scornful
of its ideals, lavish of its energies yet unable to concentrate them,
in revolt against conventional and outworn forms, but powerless to
create fit ones for the inrushing life that seems, for lack of them, to
spend its force in vain. Had Byron's been a loftier, clearer, calmer
spirit, it would not have so well represented the age or impressed
it so strongly: its sway would have been less transitory, but not so

Happily, the period of fascination and that of the inevitable reaction
are now both past, and we can examine the phenomenon that was once
thought so transcendent and afterward so trivial and delusive with
an unbiased judgment. To the question whether the magic that riveted
the gaze and enthralled the minds of so many and diverse observers
was real or false, we find the reply easy, that it was both. It
seems to us difficult to dispute the dictum of Mr. Carlyle, that "no
genuine productive thought was ever revealed by Byron to mankind."
It is just as undeniable, as Mr. Nichol freely allows, that his gift
of expression, with its almost matchless sweep and facility, never
embraces that exquisite phraseology, that suggestive and untranslatable
diction, that perfect marriage of words to thought, which is of
the very essence of poetry. Furthermore, no writer not palpably
imitative ever betrayed in such a degree the influence of his great
contemporaries, or culled more unsparingly from books to enrich his own
compositions. His total lack of the dramatic faculty is admitted on
all hands. It would seem impossible, therefore, to assign him a place
in the creative order of minds, or to rank him, as some continental
critics still do, with the great masters of poetry. Judged by the
strictest tests and soundest canons, one is in doubt whether he should
be reckoned as a poet: with the Romans he would have been one, no
doubt, but scarcely with the Greeks. But if not a son of heaven, he is
a chief among the sons of earth. His intellect is of the keenest, his
wit of the sharpest, his passion of the strongest. Every scene, every
event, every thought, every feeling, strikes him with electric force
and is reproduced with the vividness and intensity of the original
impression. His imagery has the effect of physical sensations. His
descriptions do not merely represent or suggest, but steep us in
the emotions of "a living presence." The sea and the mountains, the
night and the storm, the "dewy morn," the "hush of eve," the "light
of setting suns," the battle-field and the shipwreck, the chamber
of death, the desert and the ruin, the rage of fierce passions, the
calmness of despair, stamp themselves upon the reader's brain, and
linger like the haunting effigies of personal experiences. Scrutiny
reveals innumerable flaws, reflection discloses a want that makes the
whole fabric seem little better than phantasmal; but we never lose the
sense of an abounding life, of a vigor that cannot be repressed and a
splendor that cannot be dimmed, of a genius always ripening, though
condemned by its very nature to perpetual immaturity.

We have left ourselves little space to speak of Mr. Nichol's execution
of a not too easy task. With matter so abundant his restrictions in
regard to treatment could not but press hardly upon him. Too often
he is compelled to summarize baldly or to rely upon the reader's
previous familiarity with details. But subject to the qualifications
arising from the conditions imposed upon him, his performance may be
pronounced satisfactory and successful. The arrangement is skilful,
the story is well told, and the criticism, if somewhat deficient in
definiteness and force, shows both sympathy and comprehension and
steers with tolerable directness between the extremes of praise and
censure. Opposing judgments are quoted or referred to with needless
iteration, and sometimes, as in the case of Carlyle and Goethe,
with an exaggerated emphasis and a misapprehension of the relative
points of view. It would be easy to take exception also to particular
judgments or the manner in which they are expressed. When we are
told, in allusion to _Cain_, that "Lord Byron has elsewhere exhibited
more versatility, fancy and richness of illustration, but nowhere
else has he so nearly 'struck the stars,'" we cannot but demur to the
substitution of a borrowed rhetorical phrase for the more literal
statement which the preceding limitations lead us to expect. When we
find it said of the _Vision of Judgment_ that "every line that does
not _convulse with laughter_ stings or lashes," and of the _Letter to
the Editor of the British Review_ that "no more laughter-compelling
composition exists," we can only infer that Mr. Nichol's risible
muscles are much more flexible than those of most people. But whatever
its faults or shortcomings, this volume, as well from the deep interest
of the subject as the ability with which it is handled, is one of the
most agreeable, and can hardly fail to be one of the most widely read,
of the series to which it belongs.

 Four Centuries of English Letters. Edited and arranged by W. Baptiste
 Scoones. New York: Harper & Brothers.

It is hard to decide what may not be done by a clever littérateur with
tolerable success in these days of hasty condensations and picturesque
generalizations. An age of materialism has its advantages. If it cannot
enjoy the inspiration of a distinct and vital idea to shape its own
consciousness and give life and originality to its own achievements, it
has a good chance to study with curious pains the methods and processes
of all preceding epochs. There is, to be sure, something pathetic in
our wealth of opportunity--something defeating, even impoverishing, in
the very facility with which we set to work to extract the juices and
essences from the dry bones of history.

Mr. Scoones must have enjoyed the labors which have their result in the
book now before us. It has always seemed to us a pleasant task--worth
the carrying out by a man of wealth and leisure--to select a library
which should contain all the published letters of the world. The
editor of this collection is no doubt familiar with such a library,
and his aim has been to help others to his own sources of pleasure.
He has given a fair selection of English letters, not attempting to
classify them except by historical periods, which do not, however,
always present them in regular sequence. This sort of book is supposed
to suit the modern mind, which is understood to aim at the mastery of
a little of everything. It is an attractive notion that since nobody
now-a-days has time to read all the letters of a single writer, it
is a capital thing to read a single letter of every writer. Yet the
true significance of a book like this can only be felt by one who has
studied the literature of letters familiarly and lovingly. To the
student of history the mere turning of its pages brings an influx of
thoughts and memories, half of pain, half of delight. In the confused
medley the keynote of many a strange, melancholy strain is struck. The
history of the world is a very sad one, and never seems more sad than
when the relics of all the ages are thus jumbled together. Even what
was in itself light-hearted and joyous becomes half tragical, because
it belongs to the strange old story. Such a book, to be understood and
cared about, must be read more through the imagination than through the
eyes. John Dudley's letter from the Tower on the eve of his execution
calls up all the passionate, painful, terrible history of one of the
world's cruelest times and mirrors it anew for us. Yet it is not the
duke of Northumberland's fate which makes our hearts shudder and our
eyes moisten, but something that comes more nearly home to us.

Regarding the discrimination shown in the selection of the letters,
there must be naturally as many opinions as there are lovers of
letters. The reader turns to find the epistles he likes best, and
missing them decides that much of what was most worthy has been
omitted. It would seem as if Horace Walpole's letters might have been
more carefully selected; Charles Lamb's have apparently been taken
haphazard, without any accurate idea of their true valuation; and as
for Keats's, those everybody ought to know and love him for have been
left out altogether.

But unsubstantial things like letters, of which the charm is so
delicate and elusive, stand less for what they are absolutely than
for what they have come to mean for us. Sharply contrasted as now when
bound up in a single volume, it becomes an interesting literary study
to compare the style of one writer with that of another. Some of the
"elegant letter-writers" seem barren pretenders enough when their
vague, imposing, but patchwork sets of phrases are set side by side
with the genuine outcome of real thought and feeling. Some very famous
names are appended to tolerably indifferent effusions. It is very easy
to decide whom we should have chosen for familiar correspondents. They
are, after all, few, and first of all our choice would have been Cowper.

 Pencilled Fly-Leaves: A Book of Essays in Town and Country. By John
 James Piatt. Cincinnati: Robert Clarke & Co.

Mr. Piatt has written a pleasant series of essays on a capital list
of subjects. He makes a sort of confession in the title of his book,
and in his preface besides, of their being inspired by his favorite
authors. They may originally have filled a particular column in some
journal, and in such a case were certain to have been turned to by its
readers with an expectation of pleasure which they never failed to
answer. It is the fashion with critics to make mention more or less
slightingly of detached pieces bound up in book-form. But, after all,
how else should we have had Lamb and Hazlitt? And such essays, from
their enforced brevity, are apt to contain a freshness and spirit often
lacking in more ambitious papers, where, with the same amount of actual
material, three times the space must be filled. Mr. Piatt is a poet,
and sees the poetic side of every-day things. He is, besides, a genial
optimist, and finds in the disagreeables of life--for instance, going
to bed in a cold room--a delightful experience: "But blessed and thrice
blessed is he for whom hardy choice or a most beneficent--even when
least smiling--Fortune has made his bed and smoothed his pillow in a
cold room! He sleeps in Abraham's bosom all the year, indeed. To him
are given, night by night, such new sensations as those for which kings
might throw away their foolish kingdoms. He conquers his Paradise at
one shuddering although faithful leap, and the gentle tropics over the
feathers and under the coverlets breathe their tenderest influences to
confirm its enjoyments."

The last paper, "How the Bishop Built his College in the Woods,"
is the most interesting in the book, giving the history of Kenyon
College. It is not probably generally known through what privations and
struggles Bishop Chase carried his hope and his resolution to found
a college in Ohio, nor how he gained his victory at last. Both the
seminary and its site were named after munificent English patrons who
came to the good bishop's aid when American friends turned from him.
The episode of his runaway slave, Jack, the effect his emancipation
had upon the fortunes of his master's beloved enterprise, is a curious
one. We may add that Bishop Bedell, who now presides over the diocese
of Ohio, has made Kenyon College one of the most interesting religious
institutions in the United States.

_Books Received_.

 The Diary and Letters of Frances Burney (Madame D'Arblay). Revised and
 edited by Sarah Chauncey Woolsey. 2 vols. Boston: Roberts Brothers.

 The Congregationalism of the Last Three Hundred Years. By Henry Martyn
 Dexter. New York: Harper & Brothers.

 The Historical Poetry of the Ancient Hebrews. By Michael Heilprin. 2
 vols. New York: D. Appleton & Co.

 Uncle Jack's Executors. By Annette Lucille Noble. ("Knickerbocker
 Novels.") New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons.

 Shakespeare's Tragedy of King Richard the Third. By William J. Rolfe,
 A.M. New York: Harper & Brothers.

 A Stranded Ship. By L. Clarke Davis. ("Knickerbocker Novels.") New
 York: G.P. Putnam's Sons.

 The Sisters. By Georg Ebers. From the German by Clara Bell. New York:
 William S. Gottsberger.

 American Manual of Parliamentary Law. By George T. Fish. New York:
 Harper & Brothers.

 Critical Essays and Literary Notes. By Bayard Taylor. New York: G.P.
 Putnam's Sons.

 Judge and Jury. By Benjamin Vaughan Abbott. New York: Harper &

 Life and Letters of Horace Bushnell. New York: Harper & Brothers.

 The Octagon Club. By E.M.H. New York: G.P. Putnam's Sons.

 Half a Century. By Jane Grey Swisshelm. Chicago: J.G. Swisshelm.

 Salvage. (No-Name Series.) Boston: Roberts Brothers.

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