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Title: Graham's Magazine, Vol. XXX, No. 5, May 1847
Author: Various
Language: English
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Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

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                           GRAHAM’S MAGAZINE.
                 Vol. XXX.      May, 1847.      No. 5.


                           Table of Contents

                    Fiction, Literature and Articles

          The Loyalist’s Daughter
          The Irish Match-Maker
          Margaret’s Well: A Tale of the Great Civil War
          Mandan Indians—Lover’s Leap
          Frank Beverly
          The Islets of the Gulf
          A Dream
          Game-Birds of America.—No. VI
          Review of New Books

                                 Poetry

          Sonnet
          The Stolen Child
          Night
          Settlement of the Genesee
          To Mrs. P——, of Chestnut Street
          Sea-Side Musings
          “Are They Not All Ministering Spirits?”

       Transcriber’s Notes can be found at the end of this eBook.

                 *        *        *        *        *

[Illustration: Drawn by J. Smillie from a sketch by T. Addison Richards.
  Graham’s Magazine, 1844.
Engraved by Rawdon, Wright and Hatch & Smillie.

 LOVER’S LEAP.
 CHATTAHOOCHEE RIVER]

                 *        *        *        *        *

                           GRAHAM’S MAGAZINE.

           Vol. XXX.     PHILADELPHIA, May, 1847.     No. 5.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                        THE LOYALIST’S DAUGHTER.


                   A TALE OF THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION.


                         BY P. HAMILTON MEYERS.


                               CHAPTER I.

The world-renowned city of Paris, always gay, was, perhaps, never more
so than in the autumn of the year 1776. Most prominent among the
exciting topics of its excitable populace, at that period, was the
American war. Possessed of an innate love of liberty, and a generous
sympathy for its oppressed supporters, and acting, doubtless, in part,
under the influence of an habitual opposition to the British government,
the citizens of Paris, and, to a less extent those of all France, had
watched with anxiety the growing rupture between the colonies and their
parent country, and now hailed with unconcealed delight the prospect of
their final separation. Each item of intelligence which gave token of
the spirit of the republicans, or the prospect of their success was
sought with avidity, and discussed with animation. Not a city in the
colonies themselves could boast of a populace so united in their
opinion, or more enthusiastic in their anticipations on this engrossing
subject. Whatever mistaken ideas of loyalty there might be in America,
to arrest the cause of popular freedom, no such obstacle existed in
France. They at least owed no fealty to the House of Hanover.

The feeling upon this subject at Paris had been brought to its height by
the appearance of Franklin in that capital. Never, perhaps, had an
untitled foreigner attracted so much attention, or been received with
such distinction. In addition to the cause of his country, his personal
reputation as a philosopher, his venerable years, his singular costume
and manners, combined to throw around him that charm of novelty so
seducing to the multitude. Wherever he appeared in public, crowds
gathered to admire. The hotels and club-rooms resounded with the name;
the gazettes were filled with his aphorisms and _bon-mots_; and in every
place of public resort, conspicuous among the embellishments the
portrait of the American envoy, with grave and sage-like countenance,
arrested attention.

That the presence of so decided a _lion_ should be eagerly sought for at
the fashionable parties and _levees_ was quite a matter of course. Nor
was the American backward in availing himself of all legitimate means to
increase the popularity of his cause.

The _clairvoyance_ of imagination, more potent than that of Mesmerism,
shall unroof for our benefit the marble and pillared mansion of the
Countess De Berne, and give to us a bird’s-eye view of its interior, on
the evening of one of her most brilliant _fêtes_. A flood of light, a
blaze of beauty meets the eye. Sitting, standing, promenading, the
votaries of fashion, in numberless brilliant groups, are seen. Eminent
among this throng for his personal appearance, and his graceful and
agreeable manners, was Mr. Francis Gansevoort. American by birth, he had
been spending several years in travel on the eastern continent, and only
for a few weeks past had been a sojourner in the French metropolis,
where he had gained, not without desert, ready access to the first
circles of society. The son of a distinguished and wealthy loyalist of
New York, he had left his home before the commencement of hostilities,
and until his arrival in Paris, had heard but little to awaken his
sympathies in behalf of his native land. He had for the last year been
traveling in the eastern states of Europe, ignorant of the great events
which had taken place at home, and unconscious of the rapid development
of those great political principles for which his country was
contending. The state of feeling which he found existing in Paris on
this subject, the enthusiasm, the ardor with which every thing American
was spoken of, operated with an electric effect upon his mind. If any
thing were wanting to fan his emotions into a flame, a letter, which he
at this juncture received from a much loved sister at home, was that
_desideratum_. It had been written many months before, and although its
general intelligence was not new, its details were full of the most
exciting interest.

Standing beside Mr. Gansevoort, and engaged in animated discussion with
him, was a French gentleman of about his own age, who had been the
companion of his more recent travels. Their acquaintance had commenced
at Paris, about a year previous to the time now spoken of, and had
ripened into a warm friendship. Louis De Zeng was a count of the French
empire, and a gentleman of the most unsullied reputation. Like
Gansevoort he was a tall and commanding person, and possessed of that
rare grace of manner which compels admiration.

Central amid another group, beheld with reverence, addressed with
respect, listened to with the most profound attention, numbering the
highest nobility among his admirers, was Benjamin Franklin. The winters
of more than seventy years had left their frosts upon his brow, without
impairing the strength of his intellect. Conspicuous among those who
thronged about the philosopher, was a youth of about nineteen years,
himself the object of no inconsiderable degree of respect. Evidently of
exalted rank, his fascinating manners and address were well calculated
to adorn his elevated station. None listened with more earnest and
polite attention to the envoy, none asked more minute and pertinent
questions than the young Marquis de La Fayette. It is needless to say
that the struggles of the revolutionists, their exploits, and their
prospect of success were the principal topics of conversation. The
circle was soon joined by De Zeng and Gansevoort, both of whom hastened
to pay their respects to the American minister, and afterward to the
marquis, with the latter of whom each appeared to be upon terms of
considerable intimacy.

“Our friend, the marquis, calls this the American camp, Mr. Gansevoort,”
said Dr. Franklin; “I am happy to see that you are disposed to join it.”

This was no random remark. The speaker had been made acquainted, in a
few words, with the peculiar history of his young countryman, and
designed to sound his views. The friends of Gansevoort, all of whom were
in equal doubt as to his intentions, listened eagerly for his reply.

“I fear the points of resemblance between this brilliant assemblage and
the American camp are but few,” was the answer. “I design, however, that
a few months shall enable me better to institute a comparison.”

A thrill of pleasure pervaded the breasts of the listeners at this
remark; and the venerable patriot did not hesitate openly to express his
delight, and promise his personal influence with the American
commander-in-chief in his young friend’s behalf.

“You are of those who ‘forsake father and mother’ to follow the good
cause,” he said; “May your reward be proportionate.”

Count De Zeng came to the relief of his friend, by remarking that if the
latter forsook father and mother, there was one at least whom he was not
required to forsake, but who was herself among the pioneers of liberty.
He then spoke enthusiastically of the letter of Miss Gansevoort, which
he had been allowed to see, and begged a similar favor for Dr. Franklin.
This having been granted, the latter, after perusing a few lines, asked
the privilege of reading a portion of it aloud. The request was so
earnest, and so heartily seconded by the bystanders, that it would have
been uncourteous to refuse. The best educated classes of France, it is
well known, fully understand the English language when spoken, although
but few can converse in it with precision or elegance. The part selected
for perusal was a brief description of the battle of Bunker Hill, of
which Miss Gansevoort had had the extraordinary fortune to be a witness,
while on a visit at Boston.

The crowd thickened around the majestic form of the ambassador, as with
distinct but slightly trembling voice, amidst a general silence he read
the following extract from Miss Gansevoort’s letter:

“The British army, under Gen. Howe, crossed the Firth about noon, in a
multitude of sloops and boats. Every house-top in the northern part of
the city, every steeple, and dome, and hill, was crowded with
spectators. The anxiety of all classes was most intense, and especially
of those who, like myself, sympathized with the patriots. It seemed as
if on the passing hour hung the final destiny of our land. It was the
first real struggle, and its issue was to animate or forever dampen the
hopes of her gallant defenders.

“The attacking army had formed on the opposite side, and advanced in
solid column toward the American redoubt. How breathlessly I awaited the
shock! I was in the midst of my loyalist friends, and on every side I
heard nothing but confident predictions of an immediate rout of the
Americans.

“‘Now, now,’ were the whispered words, ‘in a moment you’ll see them
fly.’ I could not reply—my voice was choked. I could only send up
silent prayers to the Throne of Power; and I firmly believe that tens of
thousands of petitions were at that moment ascending simultaneously to
Heaven in behalf of our army.

“The British approached nearer and nearer to the cloud-like cluster
which hung upon the summit of the hill, without an opposing gun being
fired. A death-like silence prevailed in the American camp. ‘They’ll
surrender without a blow!’ exclaimed one. ‘They _have_ surrendered,’
said another. In the midst of these remarks, a flash of lightning seemed
to pour down the sides of the hill; one long, continuous, rapid roll of
musketry was heard, while shouts, and charging cheers rose wildly on the
air. Ceaseless, unremitting, deadly, was that fearful discharge of
musketry from the camp. The ranks of the assailants were decimated at a
breath. Appalled at this unexpected reception, they wavered, and
rallied, and wavered again. Still downward poured the iron hail. Vain
was their valor. No human courage could have withstood the shock. The
British army retreated rapidly down the hill, and one wild shout of
triumph rent the sky. From every roof, from every dome and height, those
thrilling cheers went up. So great was the consternation of the
retreating army that many fled precipitately to their boats. But their
officers, with indomitable skill and courage, succeeded in rallying them
at length to a second attack. In the mean time the flames of Charlestown
were illuminating the heavens. A detachment of the British had fired
that beautiful town, and its pillars of flame and smoke, ‘volumed and
vast,’ formed a terrific background to the tragedy enacting on the hill.
The charge was renewed with increased ardor. Heedless of their galling
fire, the Americans, as before, silently awaited the near approach of
the enemy, and again greeted them with the same resistless deluge of
balls. Completely broken and routed, the British a second time fled to
the shore. Their dauntless general, Sir William Howe, remained for some
time alone on the field of battle—all the other officers being either
killed or wounded.

“But the contest was not yet decided. The well-disciplined troops of Sir
William were rallied to a third attack, and by the aid of Gen. Clinton,
who, witnessing from the city their imminent peril, had crossed rapidly
to their relief another and more judicious assault was planned. There is
little reason to doubt that even this, although made with tremendous
force, might have been successfully sustained, but for a most
unfortunate and unforeseen event. The ammunition of the patriots began
to fail. They were also unprovided with bayonets; and, after a brief
resistance, they abandoned the works, and retired with but little loss.

“That the Americans were virtually victorious in this contest is allowed
even by many of their enemies; but however that may be, the effect of
the battle upon the people is quite the same as that of a victory. It
has inspired them with the fullest confidence in their powers, and will
lead, beyond doubt, to still nobler achievements. The whole country
rings with the tidings.”

A murmur of approbation succeeded the silence which had prevailed during
the reading of this epistle. Conversation at once became animated, and
the compliments, which were showered with a lavish hand, were divided
between the American army and its fair encomiast.

“When do you embark?” inquired De Zeng of his friend.

“Within a few weeks,” said the other.

“I will go with you,” was the sententious reply.

He who had watched the excited bearing of the young marquis at this
moment, and the proud flashing of his eye, would not have doubted that
in his breast also was forming that lofty resolution which was
subsequently carried to so glorious a fulfillment.


                              CHAPTER II.

The city of New York was at this period in the possession of the
British. Forced to evacuate Boston, and glad of permission peaceably to
depart, Sir William Howe had retired with his troops, temporarily, to
Halifax, and soon after, landing at Sandy Hook, had fought his way to
New York. Naturally most anxious to visit his relations in that city,
Gansevoort had resolved on crossing to London, for the purpose of
embarking at that place. But here a difficulty occurred. The English
government, irritated by the evident encouragement which France had
given to the revolutionists, kept a vigilant eye upon the movements of
her military men, and gentlemen of rank. Numbers of these had already
enlisted in the American army, and no French officer could at that
period have ventured within any of the colonial cities, which were in
possession of the British, without liability to arrest and detention. It
is true that such an one, so far from being regarded as a prisoner of
war, would doubtless have been allowed to re-embark for his own or any
foreign shore; but this, in the case of De Zeng, would have been to
defeat the very object of his mission. Neither himself nor Gansevoort
could endure the idea of separation from each other, nor could the
latter possibly forego his design of visiting his friends before
entering the army. If another and still more potent cause influenced the
count in persisting at all hazards to accompany his friend, it will be
readily surmised by the reader. Miss Gansevoort had already taken full
possession of his glowing imagination. Incidentally he had become
acquainted with the prominent traits of her character, and had learned
her surpassing beauty by the accidental sight of a miniature in her
brother’s possession. He earnestly desired to form her acquaintance,
without any well defined idea of the motives that influenced him.
Unless, however, he could meet her before entering the army, there was
but little probability that any subsequent opportunity would occur. Let
not the sedate reader be alarmed with the idea of being entrapped into
the perusal of a love tale, abounding with disguises and stratagems,
when informed of the expedient resorted to by the volatile Frenchman in
this dilemma. He resolved to accompany Gansevoort as a
_valet-de-chambre_, laughingly protesting that the latter should impose
no duties upon him beyond those absolutely essential to the sustaining
of his assumed character. To this seemingly absurd proposition his
companion, with great reluctance, was prevailed on to accede. Indeed, De
Zeng would not be denied, and for the purpose of overcoming the scruples
of the other, frankly acknowledged the motives that actuated him.

The plan was duly carried out. The friends proceeded to London, and took
passage in an armed packet for New York. Their fellow-passengers were
but few in number, and as fortunately none of them were familiar with
the French language, they were enabled to maintain nearly as
unrestricted an intercourse as usual. A few weeks brought them safely to
port. It is unnecessary to depict the delight which marked the re-union
of the young American and his friends, whose attachment to each other,
years of separation, so far from diminishing, had tended only to
increase. It was not, therefore, without deep regret that Gansevoort
thought of the pain which he should be obliged to inflict upon his
father, by avowing his political principles, and his determination to
support them.

In this trying crisis his sister proved a ministering angel. She
reminded him of the paramount claims of his country, and of the great
probability that, by the course he had chosen, he would render an
essential service, ultimately, to the parent whose wishes he was now
obliged to contravene. With a degree of natural eloquence, unusual among
her sex, she recounted briefly, but feelingly, all those deep and
burning wrongs which had been heaped by British arrogance upon our land.
She spoke of the martyrs who had already laid down their lives in its
behalf and the self-denying labors and perils of those great men who
were still engaged in the cause, and who were destined, she said, to an
immortality of fame, and to the unceasing gratitude of posterity.

“Do not think, dear Frank,” she concluded, “that I am transcending my
proper line of duty. I talk only to you. But if propriety must seal my
mouth in the presence of others, I only _feel_ the more deeply.”

The Count De Zeng, in his assumed character, was a witness of this
interview. Ellen had been told by her brother that she need not hesitate
to talk in his presence, and inasmuch as he himself spoke only in the
French language, she had inferred that he could comprehend no other;
there was, therefore no restraint upon her feelings.

As, with a heightened color, and eye lighted with strong emotion, she
concluded, her brother smiled and replied: “You are the same artless,
impulsive girl as ever; but, as usual, you are in the right. Do not
believe that your persuasive powers were needed in my behalf. I have not
traveled three thousand miles to engage in this war with a faint heart
or hesitating mind. But there is another, an ardent lover of liberty, on
whom they may not be entirely thrown away. Allow me to introduce you to
my friend and fellow-traveler, the Count Louis De Zeng. He travels, as
you perceive, under a cloud at present; but I think I may safely trust
to your discretion.”

Astonished and bewildered, Ellen could not believe that she had heard
aright; and it was not until some moments after De Zeng, with entire
self-possession, had advanced to pay his respects, which he did in
unexceptionable English, that she found words to reply.

“I know that I have made myself very ridiculous,” she said, blushing
deeply; “but if Count De Zeng is really a republican at heart, he will
make due allowances.”

Count De Zeng _was_ a republican at heart, but at that moment he felt
that there was something at his heart besides republicanism. If ever, in
the course of his approaching warfare, he should have occasion to storm
a citadel, he could ask no better success than had attended Miss
Gansevoort’s undesigned assault. She had carried the outworks, glacis,
fosse, and parapet, at a single blow, and stood at that moment in the
centre of the works completely victorious. What terms she would be
disposed to allow the vanquished, was a question yet to be settled.

Gansevoort hastened to explain to his sister the necessity of his
friend’s disguise, and the importance of preserving the secret; and
Ellen, delighted, as she believed, at this accession to the American
ranks, promised to use all necessary discretion.


                              CHAPTER III.

The senior Mr. Gansevoort was himself a military man. He had been
engaged in the last war between France and England, prior to the period
now spoken of, which, as is well known, was prosecuted with no
inconsiderable warmth on this continent. He had held the rank of colonel
in the British service, and acquitted himself with credit; and although
now unfitted for a military life, his zeal in the royal cause was none
the less ardent. His acquaintance among the English officers resident in
New York was extensive, and for several of them his house was a place of
frequent resort. Sir William Howe himself was occasionally seen at his
table. Among his most frequent visiters, however, was Sir Philip Bender,
a gentleman who held the rank of major in the army, but who had seen no
actual service. He had come to this country in the _suite_ of Lord Howe,
and was supposed to be secretly connected with the mission of that
nobleman, and Sir William, to establish peace by negotiation. Profligate
and unprincipled, he was a fit agent for some of those disgraceful
schemes which were set on foot by the British government, to acquire by
fraud what they could not gain by conquest. Major Bender had early
manifested a partiality for Miss Gansevoort, nor was either the colonel
or his daughter left long in doubt as to his wishes. To the one he was
as acceptable as to the other odious. Yet another individual, whom it is
necessary to introduce to the reader, was a young American, who had
attached himself warmly to the royal cause, and who held an ensign’s
commission in the army. To say that Edward Wiley was a friend and
confidant of Sir Philip may perhaps be a sufficient indication of his
character. In boyhood he had been a companion and schoolmate of young
Gansevoort, but even at that age his conduct had been characterized by
cunning and deceit. There were of course others among the officers with
whom Gansevoort now found himself in occasional communication, who were
in every respect worthy and excellent men. From these, as well as from
those first named, he met with frequent solicitations to enter the army;
and although it was no difficult matter resolutely to decline the
alluring offers that were held out to him, the necessity of concealing
his sentiments was a source of continual pain and mortification.
Suspicion was already aroused, and if confirmed might lead to his
detention. He therefore prepared to depart. Convinced that it would be
unsafe to acquaint his father with his intentions, he resolved that he
should learn them first from the camp of the enemy. Nearly a fortnight
had now elapsed since his arrival, nor had De Zeng allowed the time to
pass entirely unimproved. Occasional opportunities were afforded him of
interviews with Ellen, which had resulted on his part in the fullest
confirmation of his first impressions. Unfortunately, however, Count De
Zeng knew but little of the female character, and hardly daring to hope
for a prize which he valued so highly, he construed reserve into
aversion, and failed to discover any sufficient encouragement in the
conduct of Miss Gansevoort, to justify a direct avowal of his feelings.
Thus, unfortunately, they parted; each uncertain of the other’s
sentiments, but both painfully conscious of their own.

The theatre of war at this period was exclusively in New Jersey. But war
in reality there was none. That celebrated campaign of Washington, by
which, with an inferior and enfeebled army, he had driven Howe and
Cornwallis from almost all their strong-holds in that state, had drawn
to a close. The severity of the season was an effectual bar to further
military operations, and by tacit consent, hostilities, with the
exception of a few slight and occasional skirmishes, were suspended. The
quarters of the American commander-in-chief were at Elizabethtown, and
thither, without delay, Gansevoort and De Zeng repaired. The reader may
perhaps be aware that the time now spoken of was that critical period of
the war, in which, for the sake of the common safety, Congress had
invested General Washington with a degree of dictatorial authority.
Among other plenary powers, he had been authorized to levy and organize
a very large force, in addition to those already in existence, and to
appoint and remove all officers under the rank of brigadier-general.

Franklin had not failed of his promise to commend Gansevoort to the
special attention of the commander-in-chief, nor was a recommendation
from so high a quarter ineffectual. Both himself and friend immediately
received a colonel’s commission in a regiment of light-horse, of which
several were then being formed, but which were not designed for service
until the ensuing spring. In a skirmish which soon after took place
between a small party of the Americans under Gansevoort, and a foraging,
or rather pillaging party of the enemy, the young officer displayed so
extraordinary a degree of skill and courage as to elicit the particular
commendation of Washington. It led to an unexpected result. The
commandant at Fort Constitution had signified his desire to retire
temporarily from that station, by reason of ill health; but it was
difficult, at that juncture, to supply his place. Washington would have
offered it, unhesitatingly, to Count De Zeng, who, although scarcely
twenty-six years of age, had brought with him a distinguished military
reputation from abroad, but he could not conceal from himself the fact
that there was a growing dissatisfaction among the people, at the number
of foreigners already promoted in the army. The appointment was to be
but temporary. The fort, completely garrisoned, was considered entirely
invulnerable, and could be safely entrusted to any officer of integrity
and common skill. He resolved to place it in the hands of Gansevoort,
and, in order that the latter might be able to have the advantage, if
necessary, of a larger experience than his own, signified his desire
that the count should accompany his friend. It is needless to say that
this arrangement was most acceptable to both. It led to results but
little anticipated.


                              CHAPTER IV.

Fort Constitution has been not inaptly termed the Gibraltar of America.
Situated in an almost inaccessible fastness, about thirty miles above
New York, and commanding the Hudson river, as well as the passes of the
mountains on its western shore, its possession was considered a matter
of the utmost moment to both parties. At this period it was most
earnestly coveted by General Howe, for a reason unknown as yet to
Washington. The northern expedition of Burgoyne, although not yet
undertaken, had been fully planned, and was to be set on foot in the
ensuing spring. General Howe was, of course, cognizant of these intended
operations, to the full and complete success of which, nothing seemed
wanting but the ability on his part to form a timely junction with
Burgoyne on the banks of the Hudson—the one army descending from
Quebec—the other ascending from New York. Fort Constitution, the key of
the county of Albany, as it was termed, would be the principal
impediment to this movement on the part of General Howe. Thus, it will
be seen, circumstances combined to render its possession, at this
period, the very point on which the issue of the whole war might depend.
Its fall would have struck terror into the whole country.

Count De Zeng, who, with the commandant, had immediately repaired to the
fort, did not hesitate to express the liveliest gratification at the
condition of the works. The garrison also was complete, and the count,
with the spirit of a true soldier, saw only one thing to regret, which
was the entire improbability of an attack. There was but little duty to
perform, beyond an occasional sally in defence of the neighboring
settlements against the incursions of tories and savages; and even those
calls were rare, the Indian operations being chiefly confined to a more
northerly region. During this repose of arms, there was, therefore,
abundant leisure for other and more pleasing pursuits. A village of no
inconsiderable size, which lay sheltered beneath the guns of the
fortress, afforded the means of an agreeable social intercourse to the
officers, and festivities were in reality more frequent, and probably
better enjoyed, than in the “piping times of peace.” Of its inhabitants,
although the most were republicans, some of course were loyalists.
These, however, remaining entirely inactive, claimed to have their
rights, if not their opinions, respected. The society was too small to
allow of any political line of demarcation, and the friends of King
George and the supporters of Congress were seen mingling harmoniously
together in the evening parties, or at the midnight ball. It is true,
there were some whose naturally sour dispositions, rendered more
rancorous by the events of the war, kept them entirely aloof from their
opponents, and some, more despicable still, who concealed the bitterest
animosity under a pleasing exterior.

Not belonging to either of the classes last named, although a loyalist,
was Captain Wilton, a friend and former companion in arms of Colonel
Gansevoort, but a gentleman of more liberal views, and of the most
perfect integrity. He had two daughters, whose characters may be briefly
described. Both were exceedingly pretty. The elder was graceful and
gifted, but vain, conceited, and imperious. The preponderance in her
character of that one quality, which is so often the bane of beauty,
subverted what would otherwise have been a sound and discriminating
judgment. The younger, with more than her sister’s charms, possessed
almost none of her faults. She had been taught, by the daily and hourly
deportment of the other, to believe in her own comparative inferiority,
and was consequently but little conscious of her attractions. Thus had
she grown up, as it were, in the shade, but fortunately under
circumstances favorable to the development of all those pure and winning
graces of the heart, which so immeasurably transcend the flitting charms
of beauty. Cheerful, modest, confiding and affectionate, Alice Wilton
was “a gem of purest ray serene.”

Gansevoort was a frequent and welcome visiter at the house of Captain
Wilton. Although attracted unconsciously by the charms of Alice, the
ingenuity of her sister, Arabella, contrived to make him, ostensibly at
least, a suitor of her own. She did not hesitate to appropriate his
attentions exclusively to herself although she could not fail to see
that they were otherwise designed. Indeed Arabella was possessed of an
art, which it is to be hoped is lost to her sex of the present
generation, of _compelling_ the addresses of the gentlemen. Gansevoort
was far from considering himself a suitor of either of the sisters. His
mind was chiefly engrossed by the duties of his station, and his hours
of relaxation were controlled mainly by accident. Thus, therefore,
without giving sufficient thought to the subject to enable him to fathom
the designs of Miss Wilton, he allowed himself to appear to the public
in the character of her professed admirer.

It has been said that the winter was rigorous and severe; but it had not
yet been sufficiently cold to entirely close the lower part of the
river, which was still navigable from the fort to the city of New York.
Occasionally a ship of war, from the latter place, penetrated up to the
neighborhood of the fortress, (avoiding, of course, an imprudent
proximity,) for the purpose probably of facilitating intercourse with
some parts of the interior. From one of these, a messenger, under the
protection of a flag, was sent to the fort, to request permission for
Ensign Wiley to visit some friends at the adjoining village. Gansevoort
readily gave the desired permit. At an interview which he soon after had
with Wiley, the latter seemed disposed to claim the full benefit of
their early acquaintance and intimacy. The commandant did not repel his
advances, chiefly, perhaps, lest any coldness which he might manifest
should be attributed to the pride of superior station. They met
frequently, and at all times with apparent frankness and cordiality.
Wiley did not even hesitate to introduce and discuss the subject of the
war, and its probable results. New and formidable forces of the enemy
were hinted at. Defection in the highest quarters in our own ranks was
boldly asserted. Negotiations were now pending at New York, he said, by
which several distinguished leaders of the republicans would return to
their allegiance, and receive the clemency of the king. Gansevoort, of a
cool and phlegmatic temperament, often listened without reply; and the
other, mistaking his silence for conviction, or at least for doubt, grew
still more bold. Those, he said, who were the first to claim the royal
favor, would doubtless receive it the most abundantly. But little merit
would attach to the submission of those who submitted only when there
were no longer any hopes of effectual resistance. These remarks,
however, were kept carefully free from every thing of a personal
character. They were made, too, with an air of the utmost _nonchalance_,
as if they were on a subject in which neither speaker or hearer had the
slightest interest. Gansevoort was, fortunately, a man of quick
perceptions. Not slow to discover when himself was insulted, or his
cause dishonored, he yet had that fortunate command of temper, which, in
all controversies, is of such immeasurable importance to its possessor.
Like the true Italian diplomatist, as painted by McCauley, his eye was
large, dark, and dreamy, expressing nothing, but discerning every thing.
The interviews alluded to usually took place at the house of Captain
Wilton, where Wiley also was a frequent visiter. He was, of course, not
admitted within the fort.


                               CHAPTER V.

Nothing could exceed the grief and anger of the elder Mr. Gansevoort on
learning the conduct of his son. The first burst of his resentment fell
upon poor Ellen, whom he had long suspected of entertaining disloyal
views, and who he now fully believed had been chiefly instrumental in
forming the sentiments of her brother. Her continued repugnance to the
addresses of Major Bender, had already incensed her father most highly,
and, his anger being now literally without bound, he notified her, in
the most peremptory manner, that she must prepare for her immediate
marriage with that gentleman. In vain did she expostulate. “You alone,”
he said, “remain to inherit an ample estate, derived from the bounty of
a generous sovereign. Never shall it pass to rebellious hands. Son, or
son-in-law, never shall a traitorous subject lord it in these halls.”

Ellen was not without the most serious alarm. She knew well her father’s
firmness and her own helplessness. She did not doubt his power, in
conjunction with Sir Philip, to execute his threat in relation to her
marriage. The times were favorable to almost every scheme of iniquity
and fraud. Indeed, an event similar to the one threatened, and which had
proved almost tragical in its termination, had but recently taken place
in the city. There was none to whom she could look for help. Her mother
who alone had ever possessed any real influence over the iron will of
her other parent, had been many years deceased. She was literally
confined, a prisoner in her room, excepting when compelled to descend to
the parlor to receive the visits of Sir Philip, who did not fail, on his
part, to use every art and blandishment which a life of gallantry had
placed at his command to overcome her dislike. He painted in the most
alluring colors her reception in England as his bride; the sensation
which her beauty would make in the highest circles, and the prospect of
his own expected elevation to the peerage. It is needless to say that
his assiduities only increased her abhorrence. At length he assumed a
sterner tone. He claimed her hand as a matter of right, alledging that
prior to her brother’s arrival, her encouragement of his addresses had
been such as to constitute an implied contract of marriage. This
assertion was palpably false, but the change which he supposed Francis
had wrought in her political sentiments, he thought would give color to
it. The fulfillment of that contract, he said, he had a right to
enforce. Her father was anxious for their immediate marriage, and if she
persisted in interposing her childish objections, means could readily be
found to overcome every obstacle.

“Do not think,” he said, “that when every thing conspires to favor me, I
will be thwarted by a foolish whim. But let me beseech you to lay aside
your scruples; and if your regard for me is not now all that you would
desire, doubt not it will become so. The attachment which commences
after marriage, if less romantic in its character, is often the most
permanent. If my society is now displeasing to you, you shall be
relieved from it at once, until your feelings become tranquillized.
Business of the utmost importance calls me immediately from town, and my
absence may continue for several weeks. Let but the ceremony be
performed—”

“_Never!_ Sir Philip Bender,” she exclaimed with emphasis, starting from
her seat, which he had gradually approached. “It shall _never_ be. The
God of Heaven will protect me. I will _never_ be your bride.”

A flush of mingled mortification and anger reddened the cheek of Sir
Philip. Pausing a moment to recover his self-command, he coolly replied,

“My bride you certainly will be, although I can scarcely find it in my
heart to deprive the stage of so admirable an actress.” Having thus
spoken, he formally took leave, but with an expression of countenance
that bespoke the most determined resolution.

Frightened by threats, galled by taunts, every nerve strung to its
utmost tension with excitement, Miss Gansevoort hastily retired to her
room, where for many minutes her violent sobs, and the convulsive
heavings of her breast, alone testified her irrepressible emotion.

On the afternoon of the ensuing day, Colonel Gansevoort, and his
intended son-in-law, were seated together in a private parlor in the
mansion of the former. A profound silence existed, excepting the noise
occasioned by the scratching of Sir Philip’s pen, who was diligently
engaged in writing.

Answering the violent ringing of a bell, the maid of Miss Gansevoort
made her appearance.

“Is my daughter ready?” inquired Col. G.

“Please, sir,” responded the maid, “Miss Ellen is in a dreadful way. She
pulls out the roses—”

“A curse upon the roses!” exclaimed the other. “Fling them into the
fire, and see that she is dressed and in the adjoining parlor within ten
minutes.”

“If you please, sir, she is almost ready now. Every few minutes she gets
faint-like, and then we go on.”

Entirely unmoved by this statement, Bender deliberately finished, and
laid upon the table a neatly embossed marriage certificate, ready for
signature.

“Your priest can be depended on, I hope, Sir Philip?” inquired Col.
Gansevoort.

The other smiled as he slowly replied, “Doctor Felton owed his
appointment as navy chaplain to me, ten years ago, at a time when he had
not lost more than half of his faculties. His sight is dim now at the
best, and in a judiciously darkened room, will be found all that can be
desired; and as to hearing, he has laid no claim to the use of that
organ within my memory. But even were both senses perfect, I do not
think he would either see or hear more than I desire.”

Scarcely had he finished speaking when the clergyman was announced. His
appearance fully justified the eulogy which had just been pronounced
upon him. Of bulky form, and rubicund face, he shuffled with unsteady
gait into the room, and with attempted gayety, but in a husky and
scarcely audible voice, replied to the salutation of his patron.

“You may find my daughter a little eccentric in her conduct,” said
Colonel Gansevoort, after being introduced to the priest. “She is young
and romantic. It will not be necessary that you should take any
particular notice of these things.”

“Yes, sir—no, sir—of course, sir—certainly not, sir,” mumbled the
chaplain rapidly, as with unsteady hand, in compliance with an
invitation from Sir Philip, he helped himself at the sideboard, to an
antidote against the cold.

The maid now made her appearance, to announce that her mistress was
ready; and the little party immediately proceeded into the adjoining
room, where, half sitting, half reclining upon the sofa, white as the
dress she wore, and to all appearance lifeless, sat the bride elect. She
was in reality in a swoon. No questions were asked—no explanations
made. Sir Philip stood beside her, and the ceremony went rapidly
forward. The priest knew the service by rote; he held his book merely
for form. Not a word of its contents could he have seen, if it had been
necessary. “Does she answer?” he inquired, putting his hand to his ear,
when the decisive interrogatory was put. Bender bowed, and the ceremony
went on.

“The ring?” inquired the chaplain.

Sir Philip produced the golden circlet, and after it had passed through
the hands of the priest, proceeded with gentlest motion to place it upon
her finger. The touch was like electricity to her frame. She sprang to
her feet, and catching the robe of the terrified chaplain, sank upon her
knees before him.

“No, no, no!” she shrieked, “it must not, shall not be.”

Bender hastily disengaged her hold, and leading Dr. Felton out of the
room, informed him that Miss Gansevoort was laboring under a fit, to
which she was subject, but which would soon pass off.

“Certainly, sir—yes, sir—of course, sir—poor thing!”

“Father, dear father,” exclaimed Ellen, turning next to him, and gasping
for breath as she spoke, “you do not, _cannot_ mean it. I implore, I
beseech you by the memory of my dear, sainted mother, to spare me. See,”
she said, pointing suddenly to a portrait of her deceased parent, “she
_looks_ at you! She _speaks_ to you! Her _eyes_, her _lips_ are moving!
God of heaven!” she exclaimed, “_she is coming down from the canvas!_”

Wrought up by excitement to a point of positive delirium, Ellen once
more fell senseless to the floor.

Her father, shocked and terrified, hastily threw open a blind, and gazed
for a moment in awe at the picture. It hung motionless against the wall.

Summoning her maids, he then ordered them to bear Ellen directly to her
room. To Sir Philip’s expostulations he briefly replied; “Do not believe
that my purpose is shaken. On the contrary, it is more fixed than ever.
I know that I am doing my duty, and that she will yet thank me for it.
But it is impossible to proceed now. One week from to-day she shall be
yours. Attend, then, with your wooden priest, and the honor of Edmund
Gansevoort stands pledged for the fulfillment of his word.” Bender saw
that it was vain to reply. Having therefore enjoined the strictest
confidence upon the chaplain, and made an appointment with him to attend
on the day named, that obsequious gentleman took his leave, muttering as
usual,

“Yes, sir—no, sir—of course, sir,—certainly not.”


                              CHAPTER VI.

Nearly a week had passed since the arrival of Ensign Wiley in the
neighborhood of Fort Constitution, and he had as yet manifested no
disposition to return. The vessel from which he landed still lay
sleeping at anchor, just beyond the reach of the cannons of the fort;
and himself, mingling freely in society, was every where received as a
welcome addition to its limited numbers. Gansevoort, at this period,
received a letter from his sister, which she had found means to send to
Washington’s camp in New Jersey, and which had been forwarded from
there. It was of recent date, and fully detailed the unparalleled
persecution to which she had been subjected, and to a recurrence of
which she was so soon to be exposed. Utterly astounded by this
intelligence, and moved almost to madness by her earnest appeals for a
relief beyond his ability to bestow, his grief yielded only to the most
bitter and burning wrath against the infamous author of her sufferings.
Long and anxiously he revolved the subject in his mind, without being
able to decide upon any feasible plan of relief. The time appointed for
the compulsory nuptials was so close at hand, that no action but the
most speedy could be of the least avail. There was no possibility of his
quitting his post, without special leave of the commander-in-chief,
which could not be obtained within the requisite time; and to complete
the combination of untoward events, his friend and counsellor, the Count
De Zeng, was temporarily absent from the fort. His return was not
expected until the ensuing morning, and Gansevoort was compelled
patiently to await that event, with the very faint hope that some means
of rescue might be devised. In the mean time, hoping to meet Wiley, and
obtain from him some information that might be serviceable to his plans,
he made an evening visit at the house of Captain Wilton, where, for the
first time, he found himself alone with Arabella. Conversation, as was
not unusual, took a political turn, and the affairs of King and Congress
were discussed for some time in a semi-jocular vein.

“Colonel Gansevoort is now in the camp of the enemy,” Miss Wilton at
length remarked; “if I could expect him to speak the truth under such
circumstances, I should be disposed to trouble him with a very serious
question.”

“Colonel Gansevoort will speak the truth, if he speaks at all,” replied
the latter, smiling, “even in the enemy’s camp.”

“Tell me, then, Frank,” she rejoined, assuming a familiarity that their
acquaintance in early life may possibly have justified, “tell me if you
really desire to see the independence of these colonies established.”

For a moment Gansevoort was too much astonished at this question to
reply. While he hesitated, a light of startling intensity broke upon his
mind; but subduing every sign of emotion, he still remained silent.

“I know,” she continued, “that although Congress has declared
independence, there are many of its supporters who in reality desire
nothing more than an honorable peace with Great Britain, as her
subjects. Suppose, then,” she added, “that you had it in your power to
contribute to that end, and thus to promote the best interests of your
country, and spare the effusion of human blood—would you not do it?”

Still Gansevoort did not reply.

“Suppose, also,” she continued, “that in so doing an honorable,
praiseworthy action, you could secure to yourself affluence and
distinction, would you not do it?”

Her companion at length spoke. “Why should we waste time in these idle
hypotheses?” he said; “I know of no such opportunities.”

“But would you avail yourself of them if presented to you?”

“If Miss Wilton believes that I would not act in accordance with what
was at once just and honorable, best for my country, and most
advantageous to myself, she certainly gives me but little credit for
discretion.”

“You have spoken at last, sir oracle, and like a man of sense and
spirit. You seek the substantial good of your country. For this alone
you have taken up arms; and for this, when it can be best accomplished
by so doing, you are willing to lay them down. You are ready to take
part in that patriotic and spontaneous movement which is every where
making to promote a permanent peace. You are a prominent and influential
man, whose example will lead others to return to their duty; and as
such, his majesty is ready to testify his regard for you, in a
particular and most gratifying manner.”

“His majesty has long had the reputation of being a gentleman of
benevolence,” replied Gansevoort. “May I inquire in what manner he
proposes to display it toward so insignificant a personage as myself?”

“Francis Gansevoort,” said Miss Wilton, “it is not unknown to the
officers of the king, that your patriotism has brought upon you the
curse of a loyal father, and that you are a disinherited and penniless
man. You shall see that your sovereign is more easily propitiated than
your sire. The royal exchequer will furnish an ample substitute for a
forfeited patrimony. A free gift of ten thousand pounds will testify the
approbation of our most gracious sovereign for his friend and subject,
_Sir_ Francis Gansevoort.”

“Is it possible?” exclaimed Gansevoort; “Is it possible?” now carried
away by real surprise. “But,” he continued, after a pause, “is there
nothing expected from me in return for such munificence, besides renewed
allegiance?”

“Nothing,” replied Miss Wilton, “literally nothing. It is true, that
merely as a proof of your sincerity, you will be expected to give up
this useless air-castle of yours, which, now that the war is exclusively
in another quarter, is in reality of no value either to King or
Congress.”

“It is an air-castle, truly,” exclaimed Gansevoort, glancing momentarily
from the window at the flag which floated among the dark clouds of
night. “Have I not reason to suspect that your dazzling project is also
a castle in the air and of less substantial texture? Kings do not
usually employ such agents in their negotiations.”

“His majesty does not lack an agent far more worthy to represent him
than myself. When you are prepared to enter upon the negotiation, he
shall be forthcoming. Ensign Wiley—”

“Enough!” cried Gansevoort; “I do not treat with ensigns. My own rank,
and the importance of this transaction demand an envoy of far higher
station, and one whose word is capable of binding the British
government.”

“Be satisfied, then,” said Miss Wilton; “at this hour to-morrow, and at
this place, you shall meet with one, to whose name, and rank, and
authority, the utmost fastidiousness could not object.”

“Doubt not I will meet him,” was the reply. And thus they parted.

A few hours later in the evening now referred to, two individuals were
seated in the cabin of the British sloop-of-war Dragon, engaged in
earnest conversation. Both were in military undress. The one was young,
slight, and good looking, with an air, however, of recklessness and
audacity, that spoke the fitting agent of dark and hazardous deeds. The
other was a middle-aged man, of more dignified and gentlemanly
deportment. His demeanor was one that denoted station and influence, but
his countenance bore that sinister expression, which nature often stamps
upon the vile, and which no effort of assumed honesty can fully
eradicate or conceal. Like the mark of Cain, it is indelible; but,
unfortunately, unlike that sign, it is perceptible only to an eye
practiced in the study of the human visage. An animated discussion had
been followed by a prolonged silence, when the latter, after rising and
rapidly pacing the floor, turned suddenly to his companion, and said,

“If you have made sure of success in this matter, Wiley, we shall have
accomplished a work of the utmost magnitude, and your reward will be
proportionate.”

“I assure you there is no room for doubt,” was the reply. “I have felt
my way step by step. Our conversations have been frequent and prolonged.
He believes that his cause is declining; that the leaders are rapidly
giving in their adhesion to the crown; that all oppressive measures will
be abandoned, and thus the chief object of the war attained. What
wonder, then, that he should hasten to be among the earliest penitents,
and thus secure to himself so brilliant a reward. In truth, I begin to
regret that you bade so high.”

“It is too late to think of that,” said the other, musing. “And Miss
Wilton is his affianced bride. Well, well—we have played for a heavy
stake, and won. How will these tidings rejoice Sir William!” Thus
muttering to himself, he continued to pace his limited apartment, until
his companion reminded him of the lateness of the hour.

                                           [_Conclusion in our next._

                 *        *        *        *        *



                         THE IRISH MATCH-MAKER.


                           A STORY OF CLARE.


                        BY J. GERAGHTY M‘TEAGUE.


Those of my readers, (and particularly of my fair readers,) who may
expect to hear a love story, will, I am afraid, be grievously
disappointed; for though my legend certainly treats of that which, in
most countries, is the _consequence_ of the contrivances of the cunning
little god, yet we will hazard our affirmation that the course of true
love, as it runs through the hearts of the lads and lasses of Columbia,
is widely different in its manner among those of the west of Ireland,
and of all places in Ireland, the county of Clare.

To those who are familiar with the truly glorious tales of William
Carleton, all this is unnecessary; for these, with wonderful humor and
pathos, faithfully portray the endless peculiarities of Irish character.
Who that has alternately roared with merriment which he could not
suppress, and sobbed with strong emotion at the history of the “Poor
Scholar,” can ever forget it?

Among all Carleton’s delineations of Irish character, that of the
Shanahus is the one which chiefly bears on our present subject. “And who
is the Shanahus?” you ask. Well, I will tell you a few of his
characteristics from my own personal knowledge and observations.

In most countries under the sun, the getting of a wife is no such
railroad-speed kind of affair; and, (dating from the _first_ eloquent
glance of a bright eye, or sly _squeeze_ of a lily hand, to the happy
day when a certain little ceremony is performed,) occupies some little
time, and, as many probably will be inclined to admit, no little
anxiety, interlaced with a thousand little disappointments, &c.; all
very well known, and very delightful in their way, no doubt, _when all
comes right at last_. But in the land we are treating of, unlike all
others, except in some particulars the Eastern nations, from whom many
of our customs are derived, affairs are carried on in another kind of
manner.

The week before Lent, or Shrove, is the great time in Clare. And, oh!
what a study is here for the plenipotentiary, the _attaché_, or the
financier. A young man, (suppose, for instance,) hears of the “great
fortune” of some young lady in the neighborhood, or, what generally
happens, he is waited on by one of his friends, (_quite by accident_)
when a conversation to the following purport occurs:—

“Well, Jimmy, who do you think I’ve in my eye for you?”

“Why, then, how do I know, Corny?”

“What do you think of Judy Tucker?”

“Oh, that would be _great_, Corny! I hear she has a good stockin’ full?”

“Is it her? Two hundred pounds—no less; she’s no great beauty, but—”

“Oh, never heed, Corny. Do you think you could manage it?”

“Oh, let me alone.”

Corny then mentions it to his wife, and she takes an early opportunity
to go over to Judy’s residence, where she (quite casually) mentions
Jimmy Melish.

“Oh, but that’s the nice boy, Judy, agrah!”

“Is it Jemmy Melish you mane, that lives beyond the old church of
Kilbricken?”

“Yes, agrah!” (softly.) “Oh, but it’s he would make you the dashin’
husband!”

“Oh, yeh! what’s that you say?”

“_A husband_, dear! And _sich_ a beautiful _farm_! Ten cows—no less,
and every one of them white with a black star on their foreheads. Did
you ever see him, Judy?”

“No, I never did.”

“Well, come wid me to mass on Sunday, an’ I’ll show him to you.”

And thus is the ice broken. But who is Corny, all this time? Why he is
the veritable _Shanahus_; and he it is who is the oracle for all the
matches in the neighborhood.

Every district has its “Corny,” and it is he who has been the projector
of half the matches that have been made for years in that part of the
country; and seldom does it happen, so good is his judgment, that any
bad selection takes place.

As soon as the ice _is_ thus broken, sundry meetings take place at the
houses of both the suitor and the sought. In former days, countless were
the gallons of whiskey swallowed on these occasions, and bitter the
disputes. I have known a match broken off altogether from a discussion
as to which party was to provide the spirits for the wedding banquet;
but they are frequently annulled, even now, by a dispute about a pig,
which one side insists on being added to the “fortune,” and the other
refuses.

And now you see, my fair readers, that love has but little to do with
_these_ matches. I can positively state, and many will bear out my
assertion, that the blooming bride, and the happy bridegroom, have
frequently never before set eyes on each other until they stand up to
the ceremony, and it is singular to see the lady nudge a neighbour on
the arm, and say “_which av ’em is it?_” Yet these things are; though
I’ve no doubt they will gradually wear out, become matters of history,
and Clare grow “_like the rest of the world_.”

It is but justice to my country people to say, that in all my life, I
have never heard of an unhappy match. _Unfortunate_ it may be, and the
dire cravings of hunger may be often felt; but though these strange
people may show but a faint trace of what we call love in these
matrimonial _speculations_, of which I have given you a slight outline,
that they possess the strongest affections for their partners, in their
joys and sorrows, cannot for one instant be questioned. In sickness,
health, joy, sorrow, fortunes, and reverses, we will, for constancy and
affection, defend the “choice of the Shanahus” against the whole world.

Will it, then, be considered amiss, if we pass away one of these
evenings, or wet days, as the case may be, by relating a few of the more
remarkable doings of a pretty good specimen of the _genus_, who existed,
or (as we may truly say) _flourished_, in the county of Clare, some
little time ago?

Mehicle O’Kelopauthrick, (or Michael Fitzpatrick) then, was eminently
fond of his jokes, and was accounted, by all, the most knowing fellow in
the parish of Ballinacally. He had, withal, a happy genius, and was
peculiarly famed as a mediator in matrimonial arrangements. On this
account, Mehicle’s advice and assistance were frequently solicited to
transact these little matters of business, and truly surprising was the
consummate tact he would display on such occasions. Were he engaged on
the part of the “boy,” who, perhaps with scanty means and expectations
of his own, wished to secure a rich heiress, his _forte_ consisted in
making him appear, in the eyes of the opposite party, as rich again as
he really was. Was he, on the other hand, on the side of _her_
friends—in that case, he had to exert all his abilities in putting the
very same “boy” off with the least possible amount of fortune.
Notwithstanding, Mehicle was a jolly fellow, and no one could enjoy more
than he a good-humored frolic, especially when coupled with an affair of
this kind, which was ever to his fancy.

Now, some particularly “cute” things, which Mehicle did at various
times, bid fair long to live in the remembrances of the good folks of
Ballinacally; and if a sample or so will be at all acceptable (that is,
amusing) to my readers, they shall have one, and “lead mille failte”
into the bargain.

Mehicle, then, had occasion one season, in conformity, alas! to a too
general custom, (which would plunge me too much into an Irish agrarian
political discussion were I to describe,) had occasion, I say, to sow
his “handful of pratees” on a farm some miles from his own house, and
might be seen, early and late, going to and returning from his work.

He had been for some time thus engaged in preparing his potato-field,
when he observed that every day a young man of his acquaintance
regularly passed through the end of the same field, on his way to and
from the house of a rich old farmer, who lived on the other side of the
hill.

Now, as Mehicle watched him night and morning, he could not help
guessing (and he guessed rightly for once, for he was a shrewd observer
in these matters) that this young man was hard at work making love to
the said rich farmer’s daughter.

It happened, that between the field in which Mehicle was sowing his
potatoes, and that which led to the rich farmer’s house, there was a
wide water-course; not exactly a drain, but a hollow, wet, rushy place,
that divided the lands. It was dry enough in summer, no doubt; but, in
its flooded state it was, though very wide, quite such a place as a
young, active fellow like Aidey Hartigan, who possessed a clean pair of
stockings, and brightly polished shoes, would rather risk a flying jump
across, than wet the one, or sully the lustre of the other, by splashing
through.

Not a little surprising was it to Mehicle to observe his friend Aidey,
every morning, after having come out of the farmer’s house, (where he
had spent the night,) walk straight through this nasty, wet, boggy
place, to the great detriment of the nice clothing of his nether man;
but what still more astonished him was, that just when he was about to
leave off work, he saw Aidey, as he was coming to the farmer’s hopping
and jumping as he neared the trench, and clearing it at a bound.

Mehicle, who as I have hinted, was ever inquisitive, could at last no
longer bear to see Aidey going on in this manner, and determined not
only to inquire the reason of this strange behavior, but also to try to
have his hand in the making of the match, if such was in view; and
accordingly, when Aidey appeared next morning, after having as usual
covered himself with bog-dirt and mud, in blundering through the trench,
he went forward to meet him, and they addressed each other with the
usual salutations. Let me detail their conversation, as Mehicle used to
relate it, and fond was that very same boy to tell over all the
adventures, schemes and diplomacies, in his life of _Shanahusy_.

“Good morrow, Mehicle! God bless your work.”[1]

“And you likewise, Aidey. How are you to-day?”

“Why, then, middlin’, only! but there’s no use in complainin’!”

“Indeed, faix, Aidey, you’re airly up! but an’ sure they say it’s the
airly thrushes get the airly worms. Whisper! what are you about above
here at big house?”

“What house? Is it Brian Mungavan’s you the mane?”

“Yes, to be sure!”

“Ah! _myself_ that knows that! Maybe, though, I might tell _you_, in the
course of time, and maybe yourself might assist me for a bit.”

“Oho! is that the way? Well _that_ it may thrive with you! _That’s_ a
business, at any rate, that serves all men, includin’ the priests!”

“And Shanahuses!” said Aidey, grinning, “and I ever knew you to be a
capital one!”

“Well, I’m glad you’re going to make a trial of me, and I say again,
_that_ it may thrive with you! But, aisy awhile, and answer me one
question. I’ve been noticing you, and I’ve seen you passing backward and
forward, these few days past, being, as you see, diggin’ the place of a
half acre of pratees for myself, and every morning, when you used to be
coming out of owld Brian Mungavan’s house, and over that wet place
beyant, you used to walk straight through it, and not mind the wet one
straw; but when you used to be going in to Brian’s when I was lavin’ off
work for the day, and when I was wairy and tired enough myself, it’s
then I used to see you give a hop and a jump, and clear the trench in
flyin’ colors. And faith it’s not such a bad jump aither, not at all;
and it’s no wonder (so it isn’t) that you’d like to carry a dry shoe in
to _herself_; but why shouldn’t you do the same when you’re comin’ out?”

“Why, then,” answered Aidey, mournfully, “I’ll tell you. Every word of
what you say is true; and I’m much afeard it’ll be the cause of my
giving up Brian Mungavan’s house; and what’s worse, Eileen herself; and
what’s worse again, her _fortune_—for the rale honest fact is, I _must_
do it; I can’t stand it any longer—for, indeed, when I come out of
Brian Mungavan’s house, Mehicle, I am not able to jump over the trench.”

“Why, man alive, why not? Wouldn’t one think now, that the good dinner
you’d get, and good supper, and good sleep, _and the sight of herself_,
would put you in the best of spirits, and that you’d clear the trench in
a jiffey? But, God help you! Sure you’re in love, I suppose. As Larry
Burk says in the song,—

    “_Love, she_ is a _killin’ thing_!”

“Ah, let me alone! Faith, then, that’s not what’s killin’ _me_, I can
tell you. Little you know what a place that house above is. Little you
know what sort of a man is Mungavan. There! redden the pipe, and let’s
sit down behind the rock, and I’ll tell you all about it, and let you
know the hobble I’m in.”

“Very well, out with it,” said Mehicle, as he drew a puff of his pipe;
“and if I can serve you, you know _me_, and what _I_ am.”

“Oh, well I know who and what you are; and that the dickens a better
Shanahus than your four bones ever stood in shoe leather to undertake a
bargain of the kind; and so I’ll ask your opinion. And, first and
foremost, you must know that there’s not such a kinnadt[2] in the
province of Munster, than that same Brian Mungavan—and himself knows it
well; and it’s an unhappy life he lades his poor wife, and his nice girl
of a daughter, he’s such an owld crust himself; and, indeed, myself
believes he begrudges even the crusts to the poor dogs. In fact, I’d
have run off with Eileen long ago—for I could do it in a minute—only I
know if I did, I’d never finger a penny of her fortune, which is pretty
nice, too.”

“But,” said Mehicle, “what, in the name of goodness, has this to do with
jumping over the trench?”

“Every thing,” said Aidey, groaning—“wait a minute. When I go in, you
see, at night, I’m in tolerable good spirits; and then I think nothing
of the trench—so much for that. Well—that’s all very well. I go in,
and after a while, we all sit down to dinner; and, to be sure, to do the
man justice, it’s not a very bad dinner at all that he gives us. Well,
we begin; and all of us pelt, and cut, and tear, and ate away at the
dinner, as hard as ever as we can; but all wont do, Mehicle. Brian ates
twice faster nor any of us; and in less than five minutes he purtends to
be done, and—‘Here, now,’ says he, ‘take away,’ says he. ‘Remove those
dishes immediately,’ says he. ‘The Lord be praised, we’ve had enough!
and thousands of the poor starvin’ all over the country,’ says the big
rogue; and all the while, Mehicle, we haven’t half enough to ate, nor a
quarter; and then it’s a poor night’s rest a man gets on an empty belly,
Mehicle. So, then, for fear of bein’ starved intirely, I start off
before breakfast. I don’t go home at night, (because she and I can get a
great dale of talk before bed-time, and then it’s too late to be goin’
home so far.) I go, I say, before breakfast, for then I’m lost
altogether with the hunger, and I’m not able hardly to move, and I come
to the trench, and it bothers me entirely, and I’m _obligated_ to
_wade_. And, Mehicle, Eileen tells me it’s the same way at breakfast,
and he allows them but the two meals a-day; _but_, and listen to me,
now. She says he gets up in the night, and gets things that’s left from
the dinner, and ates them within in his bed, the dirty, unmannerly
brute! Now, did you ever hear of such a rascal? Oho! Muvrone! if I ever
get the fingerin’ of any of his cash, it’s I’ll show him how a good boy
can spend good money. But how can we manage it, Mehicle? Can you give me
any resate to cook the old scoundrel with?”

“Faix, I can _so_!” said Mehicle, handing him the pipe, “and a good way.
It’s easily known that you’ve not the laste sperrit, though, indeed,
you’re a fine, likely lad—but, to be sure, you’re in love? _You_ can’t
do a single ha’porth. No, if you really want to _cook_ that chap, you
must get an _owld trainer_ like me, and then, maybe, if both of you help
me right, we may get some good out of him; at any rate we’ll have
diversion, and, Aidey, my boy, take courage, and if you _do_ lose her,
_and_ her dirty fortune, I’ll be bound, by the pipe in your mouth, to
secure as good a one for you in the space of one month.”

“O, Mehicle, I don’t doubt that in the least; but my heart is for
Eileen, and you must try and get her _first_, any how.”

“Very well, Aidey, we’ll try. ‘Worse than lose we can’t,’ as Mike Gorman
said, when the doctor pulled out his tooth; do you stop diggin’ here
along with me to-day, it’s the least you can do. I have a famous dinner
here in the basket—we’ll ate that soon, and then we’ll have a
tremendious, grand, famous appetite by evening; and my hand and word to
you, we shall have enough and lavins at dinner to-day.”

“Do you think so, Mehicle? God bless you for sayin’ so! I always heard
you had a great head for these things.”

“Yes, maybe I have; but two heads are always better than one, even
supposin’ they were no better than a couple of boiled pigs’ heads.”

With this profound reflection, they set to work, and with the help of
the dinner which Mehicle had brought, and the tibbacky, managed to dig a
good piece of the stubbles; and when evening came on, they made their
way over the hill to Brian Mungavan’s house.

“And now,” said Mehicle, “do you introduce me just as your friend, but
say nothing whatever about the match; lave all that to my management.”

They went in accordingly, and were welcomed, civilly by Mrs. Mungavan,
coolly enough by Mr. Mungavan; but as for Miss Mungavan, it may not be
too great a presumption to suppose that the fault would not lie in
_that_ quarter, were the match not made.

Dinner, the much dreaded dinner, was announced; and, as faithful
historians, we must say, too, _what_ was for dinner. There were, then, a
couple of good sized fat fowls, a turkey, too, and some bacon, with a
proportionate supply of cabbage. Miss Mungavan, on being asked the dish
of her choice, preferred, for certain reasons of her own, the delicate
_breast_ of the turkey; Mehicle, before whom were placed the fowls, not
a little to the astonishment of all, who stared at so unusual a
proceeding, clapped one on Aidey’s plate, and kept the other himself,
observing that “it wasn’t worth while to be dividin’ them for birds.”

Mr. Brian Mungavan, from old custom, gobbled up his bacon and cabbage
with all celerity; but when he raised his eyes, and beheld the fierce
and determined attack on the good things, he evidently foresaw it was
useless to give the accustomed order to “take away;” for that if given,
it would remain perfectly unheeded.

A fowl a-piece, with the bacon and various other appurtenances, was not
a bit too much for men who possessed such keen appetites as Aidey and
Mehicle; Miss Mungavan, as she had some one to keep her in countenance,
also transgressed the rules, and doubtless enjoyed her share; the old
woman, her mother, had enough; in short, it was a great day for that
family. A dinner so completely discussed, was there, a rare occurrence.
Such a day had never before been seen; but it was but a trifling
forerunner of what was to come.

In fact they ate enough, and after they had eaten, they drank, all but
the old kinnadt; he seemed quite lost in amazement at the quantity
eaten, and bewildered at the assurance of Mehicle, who laughed, and
talked, and played all sorts of antics, and cracked lots of jokes, as he
always did, when engaged in an adventure just to his mind, as this was.

At length night came on, and bed-time was declared. All separated to
their respective rooms, with the exception of Mehicle, who was to remain
where he was, and to be content with occupying a “settle-bed” near the
kitchen fire—and a not uncomfortable berth it is. But not long had
Mehicle O’Kelopauthrick enjoyed his first sleep, when as he was, I
believe, chuckling inwardly, while he dreamt of the tricks he was
playing, a slight noise near the fire attracted his attention, and
rousing him from his slumbers, caused him to raise his head cautiously.
Peeping over the side of the settle-bed, he discovered Brian’s wife in
the act of kneading on the table a cake of wheaten flour.

“Oho!” thought Mehicle, “this must be the supper that Brian gets every
night, the scoundrel. He begrudges honest people the bite, and the sup,
and it would be only a proper good deed to chate him out of it himself.”

So Mehicle waited until he saw the old woman finish her cake, and cover
it carefully in the hot ashes that still remained red on the hearth; and
as soon as she had gone in to her room, he got up, slipped on his
clothes, took his seat at the fire, and in a short time, out came the
old woman, thinking the cake was now almost ready.

“O,” said Mehicle, “good morning, ma’am. I heard the cock crowing, and I
thought it was break-of-day, and then I got up and sat here; and after
that I considered it _couldn’t_ be day, or you’d be up; but _now_ I see
it is.”

“See _that_, now,” said Mrs. Mungavan, “you’re wrong all the while. Our
cock always crows at twelve o’clock, and it’s not one at present; but my
husband has a _great tooth-ache_, and he says he’d be the better for a
smoke, and I just came in for a red coal, and I’d advise you to go to
bed again.”

“So I will, ma’am, by and bye; but as I’m up at all, I’ll wait until
he’s done smokin’, and when I’ve got a puff of the pipe myself, I’ll go
to bed.”

“O, wisha, wisha!” thought she, “what’ll I do? I’ll be kilt both ways.
I’d be ashamed to take up the cake, and it’ll be burned entirely—and
what’ll _he_ say?”

“What are we to do?” said she, going in to her husband, “there’s that
man, bad manners to him, up, and sittin’ near the fire; and I don’t like
to let him see me take up the cake, but he says he’ll go to bed when he
smokes; he heard our old cock, bad luck to him, bawlin’ and he thought
it was day.”

“Well, here,” said Brian, “take him the pipe, and make haste and bring
me the cake; but don’t let him see you takin’ it up.”

“Here, sir,” said she, “here’s the pipe; his tooth-ache’s _greatly_
better. Well, now, to be sure, tibbacky is a fine thing. Myself takes a
sly puff now and again, to comfort me; can you tell me, sir, where it
grows? I heard it grew up in Ulster?”

“O, not at all ma’am, but in _Americky_, ma’am, where there’s plenty av
land idle, and wantin’ occypation; and, faix, indeed, ma’am, that’s not
the way here, when we’re a’most starved, and it’s so scarce, and
wonderful dear; sit down here, if you plaze, ma’am, and I’ll tell you
all about _my own_ land, and how I lost it, and the hobble I’m in. Will
we put down some turf, and make a good rousin’ fire?”

“O, yeh, no, sir!” getting frightened about the cake, “we’d never get to
bed if we’d a good fire.”

“Well, then, never mind, ma’am. You see, about my farm. I was tellin’
you, ma’am, my farm (puff) was just like _that_,” pointing to the ashes
smoothed down quite flat over the _cake_; “well, my farm was quite
smooth, and level, and flat, just like _that_; but if it was, ma’am, my
second brother, Pat, ma’am, (p-p-f-f-f)—here, ma’am, here’s the pipe
for you, and smoke for a bit.”

“Thank’e, sir. Well! well, what about your brother Pat?”

“O, I’ll tell you. My second brother, Pat, ma’am, went to a blackguard
’torney, and got _an advice_, and found out that he’d as good a right to
the farm as I had myself; and he went to law with me, and he bate me,
ma’am; and then it was all left to arbitration, ma’am, and,” said
Mehicle, taking a piece of broken scythe in his hand, as if to
illustrate his description, “the rascals were bribed, I’m sure; but,
however, they made me divide the land into two halves, just now as I
might divide _this_,” making a desperate cut across the ashes, and, of
course, through the centre of the cake.

“O, dear, sir! _that_ was _terrible_,” said she. “I _hope_ they didn’t
do _any more_ to your land?”

“O, yes; that was _nothing_, ma’am. The next brother, Terry, then,
ma’am, says, says he, ‘Why hasn’t myself as good a right as them two?’
says he. ‘I’ll go to law,’ says he; and so _he_ went to law, and we did
our best, but he bate us, and it was left to arbitration; and then we
had to divide our land somehow _so_,” cutting across again, “or, stop,
I’m wrong, there was more of a corner cut off than that—it was more
like _this_;” another sliver, “and there was a wall running across, as
it might be _so_;” and here followed another slice; by this time, too,
the cake was pretty well minced.

“O, dear, dear!” said she, “it must have been _spylte entirely_ for you,
then, sir;” said she, thinking of the cake.

“O, musha, then! indeed it was, ma’am, not worth one fraction. But that
wasn’t half of the misfortune; my youngest brother, Jack, ma’am, says,
says he, ‘Why,’ says he, ‘why isn’t it mine as much as theirs?’ says he.
‘_I’ll_ go to law,’ says he; and _he_ went to law, and it was left to
arbitration; and _they_ were bribed, and if they were, they made us
turn, and mix, and twist it all to and fro, higgeldy piggeldy, in and
out, this way and that way, just for all the world like _that_,” said
Mehicle, mixing ashes and cake all up together with the bit of scythe;
“and see, now, it’s all destroyed and ruined, and broken up, just like
_that_,” pointing down at the fire.

Mrs. Mungavan was, to be sure, grievously vexed, but said nothing till
she went in to her husband.

“O, Brian,” said she, “that’s a terrible man, that man at the fire. He
has cut up and spylte your eligant cake, tellin’ me a story;” and here
she told her husband how it happened.

“Well, Molly, accidents can’t be helped; but, indeed, faith, I’m very
hungry. What else is there in the house?”

“Nothing, agrah, nothing. Them lads eat every bit that we had at
dinner—howld on, there’s the cabbage that was boilt with the bacon, and
maybe some av the bacon itself.”

“O, that’s right. Is that man in bed?”

“O, I’m sure he is.”

“Well, where’s the bacon and cabbage?”

“In the skillet, near the settle-bed.”

It was rather dark in the room; however, he found the right skillet,
which Mehicle watched him putting down, determined, however, to cheat
him of it if he could. As soon as Mr. Mungavan had put down the cabbage,
he retired to bed, and Mehicle hopped up.

Seeing another skillet near him, he examined it, and, O, joy! it was
half full of tar.

In one minute the bacon and cabbage had vanished down his own throat,
and in another the tar was beginning to hiss slightly in the skillet on
the fire. Just then, said Brian to Molly, “Don’t you think, Molly,
agrah, but the cabbage is near bein’ warm enough?”

“I think it ought to be now, Brian,” said Molly, “will I get a spoon for
you?”

“O, no—wasn’t fingers made before forks.”

So out he came, and walking straight up to the fire, sat down on his
heels, and flopped down his hand into the now nearly boiling tar, but
quickly drew it up, all covered with the horrid stuff, and was hardly
able to bear the pain.

“O, the divil carry it away for a skillet! O, Monum un ustha, but my
fingers are all destroyed! Oh! oh!—I put down the wrong skillet! Well,
I’ll not bawl out, I’d waken this honest man, and all the people—and
they’d only laugh at me; O, voh! what’ll I do at all?”

In his agony, he bolted out into the garden, while Mehicle slipped out
of the window, shillelah in hand, and though it was dark, saw Mr.
Mungavan run to the cabbages, and begin stripping off the leaves, while
he rubbed them to his fingers, in his vain attempts to cool his hands,
and get the tar off.

“Hallo!—who’s this!” said Mehicle, running up with the stick, “who’s
this?”

“O, dear! _so you’ve caught me_,” said Brian, “who are you?”

“Ah, ha! I’ve caught you, have I? I’ll let you know who I am. Here, Mr.
Mungavan! Mr. Mungavan! quick! come out! jump up! here’s a man staylin’
your cabbages! Take that, you scoundrel; how dare you come here!” And
here Mehicle began whacking him as hard as he could.

“Don’t strike me!” said Brian, “don’t! _I’ll do any thing you like._ Oh!
Oh! don’t! Don’t you see it’s _me_ that’s here?”

“O, I see you well enough! Come out, Mr. Mungavan!” said Mehicle,
continuing to beat him.

“O, stop! and God reward you! stop! Sure _I’m Mr. Mungavan_!”

“O, thunder, and pratees, and buttermilk! Why didn’t you tell me so
before! Sure I wouldn’t do such a thing if I _didn’t_ know it was you.
Come in to the house. Poor man! are you _much_ hurt?”

And now, many were the explanations on both sides. When they came in,
Brian set to work, and called up all that were in the house, as it was
now daylight. “And,” said he, “here, in the name of all that’s good and
bad, let’s have breakfast, for I’m famished, not to spake of the
scaldin’ and batin’ I got; but sure it’s all accidents, and can’t be
helped.”

Breakfast was prepared and finished, and Brian got, gradually however,
into better humor. But when that was over, his wife called him aside,
and said,

“Now, Brian, all these accidents happened through your own fault; so, by
all the books in Connemara, you must take my advice to-day. Have a fine
dinner, and make them ate and drink enough; and if it’s Eileen that boy
wants, faith, he’s a smart young man, and we couldn’t do better. Say
you’ll give her a hundred pounds, or two, if one wont satisfy him; but,
for goodness sake, give that Mehicle enough to ate.”

What a truly sensible speech was this. Here was the proper view of the
question. Brian Mungavan overcame himself for once, and was generous.
And there was _such_ a dinner! Eileen took good care of _that_. Turkeys,
geese, and all manner of delicacies, graced the board. Take the words of
a contemporaneous poet:—

        “Mutton, and good fat bacon
         Was there, like turf in creels.”

Or rather in the language of the old song:—

        “There was _lashins_ of beef there,
         And _stammins_ of sheep there,
         And whiskey came pourin’ _galore_.”

And then it was, when all, including Mr. Mungavan, were in that happy
state denominated _soft_, that Mehicle opened his unerring batteries,
never yet known to fail.

Let us merely now wish them a happy wedding; but we somehow cannot help
thinking there is in this tale a


                                 MORAL.

Be _ever_ hospitable; but, if you invite a friend or two, _beware_, when
you say “Take away;” for you know not whether some time or another you
may not fall in with a Mehicle O’Kelopauthrick.

-----

[1] The invariable salutation, in the West of Ireland, on approaching
one who is at work.

[2] Old stingy fellow.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                                SONNET.


    My wandering feet have trod those paths to-day,
    Where I so late with thee in joyance went,
    And gladly thitherward my steps I bent,
    Turning me from the dust and din away,
    And tracing with a quiet joy each spot
    Hallowed by some remembrance dear to me,
    A smile, a tone that cannot be forgot—
    Places whose every charm was won from thee;
    And therefore do I love that grassy way,
    And every spot which thou hast wandered o’er,
    And as a miser counts his secret store
    When darkness has obscured the light of day,
    So in thy absence, which is my heart’s night,
    Thy treasured words and smiles tell I with deep delight.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                           THE STOLEN CHILD.


                        BY THOMAS BUCHANAN READ.


    “There’s a glory over the face of Youth—
      And Age as fair a light displays,
    When beautiful Love and spotless Truth
      Have guided all her ways!

    “But Sin is a hideous thing to see,
      His eyes are dulled before his prime,
    And each year leaveth the mark of three,
      For he hurries the hand of Time!”

    Thus spake the awaiting Angel Death,
      By a way-side beggar-crone,
    Who wrestled with the reluctant breath
     On a pillow of broken stone!

    ’Twas a fearful sight to see her gasp,
      And clutch the air in her sinewy palms
    As if forcing from a miser’s grasp
      The miserable alms!

    But a sight to bring the tear-drops down
      Was the little maiden pale and thin
    Who stood by her side in a tattered gown
      Which let the sharp air in!

    Hatless and shoeless she stood in the rain,
      And shivered like autumn’s leaf,
    Trembling with very hunger and pain,
      And weeping with fear, not grief!

    “What ails you, mother?” the maiden cried,
      “What makes you tremble and stare?
    Why do you look so angry-eyed
      As you strike the empty air?

    “I fear you mother! Your angry brow!
      Your wild and piercing eye!
    Oh, do not, do not hurt me now,
      There is no one to see me cry!

    “Oh, mother, why do you beat me so?
      And why do we walk all day,
    And rest at night, if it rain or snow,
      In cold, wet beds of hay?

    “Oh, why do the village children play
      And seem so very glad?
    And why are they dressed so clean and gay
      While I am so meanly clad?

    “Do not their parents beat them too,
      To make them moan and cry?
    Or are their mothers weaker than you,
      And the children stronger than I?

    “I’ve seen the parents kiss and hold
      Their little ones on the knee!
    I, mother, am well nigh ten years old,
      You never did so with me!

    “Why am not I as pretty and good
      As the little girls in the town?
    Are mine the meaner flesh and blood
      Because I am burnt so brown?

    “And why do they go with happy looks
      Up where the chapel stands,
    Some with their little shining books
      And flowers in their hands?

    “Oh, mother, I wish you would take me there!
      For often as we go by
    Their voices come through the happy air
      As if from the open sky!

    “Oh, mother, I wish I could join the strain,
      And learn their beautiful words;
    I am sure they do not sing for pain
      No more than the little birds!

    “You know how once we followed them out
      To the forest green and gay;
    How they danced and sang a song about
      The beautiful flowers of May!

    “Oh, they seemed like a band of angels, free
      From hunger, pain and strife;
    As a lady once told me I should be
      If I lived on honest life!

    “Then I wondered if we were to die that night,
      If we should be angels fair!
    But, mother, what makes your cheeks so white,
      Why, why do you shiver and stare?

    “Oh, mother, mother! you have often said
      You’d kill me yet in some lonely place
    If I did not steal—and did not shed
      More tear-streams down my face!

    “And when in the prison cell we lay,
      Because you took the purse,
    I remember how I heard you say
      A very dreadful curse!

    “How then you threatened to take my life
      Because I lied not more!
    And I remember still the knife
      You said you had used before!

    “I fear you, mother! more and more!
      You groan and give such fearful starts,
    Ah, spare me now! and at every door
      I’ll cry till I break all hearts!

    “But, mother, see, arise, arise!
      A carriage comes up the vale;
    They cannot, I’m sure, refuse our cries,
      Now that you look so pale!”

    Thus spake the maid—and the carriage came,
      And she stood as with hunger wild;
    While suddenly burst from the coach a dame
      Crying “_my child! my child!_”

    The crone half rose from her dying place,
      With her mouth and eyes all wide!
    And she knew the injured mother’s face,
      Then fell on her own and died!


              PART II.

    One day in the summer garden fair
      The mother and daughter strayed;
    With trembling tongue and timid air
      Thus spake the little maid.

    “Oh, must I call you mother, indeed?
      And are you really so?
    And may a useless way-side weed
      In a beautiful garden grow?

    “Yes, you have told me all the tale,
      How I was stolen away,
    And how you grew all thin and pale,
      Grieving for many a day!

    “Day after day my heart repeats
      The story o’er and o’er!
    And when you say you love me, it beats
      As it never did before!

    “Oh, what are all these flowers that load
      The bushes with red and white?
    There are many growing beside the road,
      But none so large and bright!

    “Along the fence the alder grows,
      To shade the dusty way,
    And by the brook the briar blows
      Where the cat-bird sings all day!

    “Down by the meadows long and wet,
      The willow-walks are made;
    And now and then a violet
      Grows in the willow’s shade.

    “The dandelion and mullin bloom
      By the glossy buttercups’ bed;
    And the thistle looks like a soldier’s plume
      With its beautiful tip of red!

    “The blackberries grow by the stony wall,
      You may pick them as you pass;
    The strawberries, too, but so scattered and small
      You must hunt them in the grass!

    “All these along the highway shine;
      And as I see from here
    The turnpike’s long and winding line,
      My heart sends up a tear!

    “For they were the only things to cheer
      The long and weary mile!
    The only things for many a year
      That ever wore a smile!

    “Oh, mother, in our idle hours
      We’ll wander down the glen,
    And I’ll show you some of the simple flowers
      That smiled upon me then!

    “Come, let us walk by the road and search,
      There where the poplars stand;
    That I may carry some flowers to church
      To-morrow in my hand!

    “Then, where the old woman is doomed to lie
      In the mound so new and bare,
    I’ll slip aside, as we go by,
      And quietly lay them there.

    “So that if she is up in Heaven,
      Singing the angels’ psalms,
    She may know that all has been forgiven
      By these beautiful bright alms!

    “The good man told us, the other day,
      We must forgive our foes!
    And I forgive her; though she, you say,
      Was the mother of my woes!

    “I love to hear the church organ blow
      When the people rise from their places!
    And the children stand in a shining row
      And sing with happy faces!

    “Their sweet hymns make my heart rejoice
      Like a blue-bird in the spring;
    But when I try to raise my voice
      I weep; for I cannot sing!

    “Their strain has a sweet and delicate tone;
      But mine has none of such;
    It seems more like the wind’s low moan
      Of which I have heard so much!

    “Then, since my voice will not join with theirs,
      In my heart I try to pray,
    And I whisper o’er those little prayers
      You taught me how to say!

    “Say, mother, why did the preacher place
      His dripping hand on the little child?
    And did you not mark its rosy face
      How angel-like it smiled?

    “When I was so very, very small,
      Did you carry me up the aisle,
    And when I felt the waters fall,
      Say, did I weep or smile?

    “And then again in the afternoon
      They brought another there,
    The while the organ’s solemn tune,
      Hung heavy on the air.

    “But this one in its coffin lay,
      While its mother sobbed aloud;
    And its little hands were cold as clay,
      And its face was white as its shroud.

    “Then they slowly lowered it into the ground,
      While the pebbles down after it slid;
    And, mother, I still can hear the sound
      Of the gravel upon the lid!

    “Asleep or awake I hear it fall,
      And it’s grown to a pleasant noise;
    It seems like a loving angel’s call—
      And I must obey the voice!”

    Thus spoke the child—And the Sabbath calm
      Brought the loud organ’s sorrowful sound,
    And the great bell tolled its solemn psalm
      As they laid her in the ground!

                 *        *        *        *        *



                            MARGARET’S WELL:


                     A TALE OF THE GREAT CIVIL WAR.


  BY HENRY WILLIAM HERBERT, AUTHOR OF “THE ROMAN TRAITOR,” “MARMADUKE
                              WYVIL,” ETC.


             Ay me! For aught that I did ever hear,
             Did ever read in tale or history,
             The course of true love never did run smooth.


It was toward the close of a lovely summer’s day, in the eventful year
of 1643, that a young cavalier might have been seen riding at a slow
pace, and in a somewhat sad and thoughtful mood, through a green and
winding lane in the pleasant county of Warwick, not far distant from the
pastoral banks of famous Avon.

But though the young man’s brow was now overcast and clouded, though his
fine gray eye was fixed abstractedly on the mane of his charger, and
though a heavy shadow, such as is believed by the superstitious to arise
from the prescience of coming fate, gloomed over all his features, it
was evident that such an expression was alien to the face, such a mood
unusual to the character of the man.

He was as handsome a youth as you might see in a twelvemonth, even in
that land, so justly famed for the manly beauty of its sons; tall and
well-made, and giving promise of uncommon strength and vigor, when
mature manhood should have swelled and hardened his slender form and yet
unfurnished muscles. His face was frank and open, with a fair broad
forehead, a well-opened, laughing, deep gray eye, and a mouth, the
dimpled angles of which could not be divested of their natural tendency
to smile, even by the heavy despondency which seemed now to weigh upon
his spirit, and alter his whole countenance, even as a sunny landscape
is altered by the intervention of a storm-cloud, blotting out all the
laughing rays, which gave it mirth and radiance.

He was well-mounted on a horse that seemed adapted, by its mingled blood
and bone, to bide the shock of armies, and caparisoned with demipique
and holsters, as became the war-steed of an officer. Nor did the rider’s
dress, though not what we should now call military, contradict the
inferences that would be drawn from the charger’s make and
accoutrements; for in his steeple-crowned slouched beaver he wore a
single long black feather, and across the left breast of his velvet
jerkin a baldrick of blue silk, sustaining a sword of heavier and more
war-like fabric than the court rapiers of the day—the baldrick and the
feather indicating a partisan of the king, as clearly as the sword and
war-horse showed that he was bound on some longer and more perilous
adventure than a ride through rich green meadows and among flowery
hedge-rows.

He rode quite alone, however, which was at that day something unusual;
for the custom of going forth accompanied by several armed servants or
retainers, even in times of profound peace, was still prevalent among
men of any pretension to gentle birth, and such, unless every indication
of natural appearance, gentle bearing, and free demeanor failed, was
evidently this young cavalier.

The sun was perhaps still an hour high, and the skies were filled with
rich yellow lustre, while all the face of the green country was
checkered with bright gleams and massive shadows, according as the level
rays streamed gayly over the open fields, or were intercepted by the
undulations of the ground, the frequent clumps of trees and patches of
dark woodland, or the thick hawthorn hedges which diversified that
pleasant landscape, when the lane which the young man followed began to
rise rapidly over the eastern slope of a steep hill or down, the summit
of which, a bare wild sheep-pasture, cut clear and solid against the
rich gleam of the sunset heavens.

Here, for the first time, the youth raised his eyes, and after casting a
rapid glance over the evening skies, as if to read the hour in the
fading hues of day, checked his horse with the curb, and touching him at
the same time lightly with the spur, cantered up the ascent with more
animation in his air than he had hitherto displayed, and with a slight
gesture of impatience, as if at the unexpected lateness of the hour.

A few minutes rapid riding brought him to the edge of the bare down,
which was in fact a mere ridge, with but a few level yards at the
summit, beyond these, sinking down almost precipitately into a singular
lap or basin of land, nearly circular in form, and about two miles in
diameter, walled in as it were from the external world, on every side,
by tall, bare, grassy downs, treeless and bleak, without a sign of human
habitation or of human culture, and limiting the range of the eye to
that narrow and cheerless horizon.

Looking downward into the hollow, the scene was, however, entirely
different; for all the bottom of the basin, and all the lower slopes of
the hills were covered with dark shadowy woods, the gigantic trees and
massive foliage of which bore witness alike to their great antiquity,
and to the mild and favorable situation, sheltered from every wind of
heaven, which had induced their unusual growth. The hills at this hour
intercepted all the light of the setting sun, and the whole space within
the valley was filled with a misty purple shadow; through which, from
out the glades and skirts of the black woods, the silvery gleam of many
clear, still ponds met the eye; and beyond these, nearly in the centre
of the landscape, the tall gables and twisted chimneys of an old
dark-red Hall, with a solitary column of blue smoke soaring up straight
into the cloudless sky, arose the only indication in that wild scene of
the vicinity of any human being.

But although we have paused a moment on the bare brow of Clavering Edge,
to point the reader’s eye to this sequestered spot, the youth in whose
company we have journeyed hither made no such pause; but, too familiar
with the scenery, perhaps too impatient to reach the end of his ride,
turned his horse’s head short to the left, and trotted, as rapidly as
the nature of the ground would permit, along a faintly marked foot-path
which traversed the hill-side in a diagonal line, the steepness of the
declivity forbidding any more direct progress to the bottom, leading to
a narrow gorge which ran half way up the ascent, feathered with rich
dark timber.

As soon as he reached the covert of the woodland he dismounted, and
leading his horse a little way aside from the path, fastened him by the
chain of his cavalry head-stall to a tall ash-tree in the centre of a
thick coppice. Then, with a rapid step, he hurried down the path, which
became every moment more clearly defined, as it followed a clear, rapid
brook of slender volume along the gorge, which gradually widened into a
beautiful wooded valley. Within ten minutes he came to a tall park
paling of solid oaken plank, at least ten feet in height, all overrun
with the giant ivy which flourishes so verdantly in such moist
situations, affording access to the park within only by a low wooden
portal, closed by an antique iron lock of large dimensions.

This formidable barrier was, however, easily passed by the cavalier; the
lock giving way readily, and notwithstanding its rusty guise smoothly
enough, to a key which he drew from the bosom of his jerkin. Before
opening it altogether he paused, however, for a moment, and gazed
anxiously through the chink, to see, as it would seem, if there was any
one observing him. Then, satisfied that all was safe, he passed in
quickly, closing the door with a noiseless hand behind him, but taking
especial care not to lock it against his own egress.

Within, the scenery was very beautiful, though still impressed with the
same character of loneliness, and almost weighing on the spirits by its
unnatural and almost awful silence and repose. The glen expanded
rapidly, sloping from the park palings downward toward the mansion, but
so thick were the woods on either slope and in the bottom, that nothing
could be distinguished in the foreground but the huge trunks of the
giant oaks and beeches, with the tall lady fern growing in rank
luxuriance under them, nor any thing in the distance but the twilight
foliage of their heads, as they descended rank below rank in the great
amphitheatre. Even at this early hour, indeed, that deeply wooded dell
would have already been as dark as midnight, save that adown its centre
there ran a chain of long, narrow, shallow fish-ponds, each raised by a
dam above that next below it, until they reached the level
bottom-ground; all overarched, it is true, with shadowy branches, but
all reflecting the last western gleam which stole in through the arch of
leaves, dark as the portal of some gothic aisle, through which the eye
caught a glimpse of a smooth grassy lawn, glimmering in the dewy
twilight.

Between the young man and the head of this chain of ponds there lay a
belt of thick alders, with here and there a stunted willow, fringing the
margin of the brook which fed them, and separating it from the path
which gave access to them from above, and to the lawn below, and thence
to the gardens and the Hall.

Along this path he now bounded with a fleet and impatient step, as if
anxious to discover something which might be hidden from his eye by its
leafy barrier; a few paces brought him to the termination of the brake,
and to a large clear tank, immediately beyond it, fed by the brook, and
itself the feeder of the calm pools below. It was perhaps three yards in
length, by two in breadth, walled on all sides with solid masonry, and
partly covered at the head over the inlet of the stream by a groined
arch of stone-work; on every side the ground sloped down to it, covered
with deep rank grass; and above it six or seven enormous elm trees
shadowed it with a constant gloom. The water within was as transparent
as glass, showing the sandy bottom in all parts, though of extraordinary
depth, with the pure cold springs boiling up from a dozen little
whirlpools, and sending their trains of sparkling bubbles, like the
tails of so many comets, through the limpid darkness of the pool.

And here, once more, the young man paused, and gazed anxiously about
him, and down the walk toward the quiet lawn. Then seeing that he was
alone, and that there was no person in sight, even at a distance, he
cast himself down on the turf at the foot of one of the great elms,
where the shadows would conceal him from any casual observer’s glance;
crossed his arms on his breast with a sort of impatient resignation, and
muttered to himself half angrily—

“It is past the hour, and yet she is not here. Oh! if she knew, if she
but knew what a hell it enkindles in my heart to be kept waiting, to be
set doubting, to be tormented thus. But no!” he added in a moment, as if
reproving his own vehemence. “No, no! something has fallen
wrong—something has hindered or delayed her. And yet what should it be?
Can we have been betrayed, discovered? God!” he exclaimed, springing
again to his feet, “Great God, forgive me! as I cannot endure this any
longer. Away with my word, when hers is broken thus! away! I will go
seek her even in—”

But as he made the first motion to take the path leading toward the
house, his impetuosity was arrested, and his rash speech cut off, by the
apparition of a figure entering the verdant arch from the lawn, and
advancing with a slow and hesitating step, as if timid or reluctant,
toward the tank and the upper glen.

The young man’s heart beat rapidly and high, as that form,
distinguishable only in the increasing duskiness of evening by its
relief against the twilight sky, entered the green arcade; and it was a
minute or two before he could discern with any certainty the sex, much
less the identity of the person approaching him.

There is, however, in the senses of a lover something intuitive, that
can for the most part discern unerringly the presence of the beloved
object, by sounds, by signs, perhaps even by perfumes, so slight as to
be imperceptible to any one, whose every nerve were not supernaturally
sharpened by the influence of passion. Something it must have been of
this amorous prescience, which rendered the cavalier almost certain,
long ere the eye could inform him, that the figure approaching was no
other than the person to meet whom he had ridden hither, and whose delay
had caused him so much anxiety.

Nor was he deceived; for ere long the fluttering of female habiliments,
might be distinguished clearly, and in another moment the well-known
sounds of the light gentle footstep, and the silvery tones of the soft
low voice assured him.

He bounded from his covert to meet her, and she too quickened her step,
as she saw and recognized her lover.

She was as beautiful a girl, of some eighteen or nineteen years, as ever
gladdened the eye of man. Considerably taller than the ordinary height
of women, her figure, although very delicate and slender, with feet and
ankles of the smallest and most fairy model, was yet so exquisitely
rounded, so perfect in the rise and fall of every graceful and
voluptuous outline, that it was not until you stood beside her, and
compared her stature with your own, that you perceived how far she
overtopped her fellow fair ones in height as in beauty. Her face was of
perfect Grecian outline, with large soft gentle eyes, like violets
surcharged with dew, and a mouth the most beautiful that ever adorned a
female face, both for shape, color and expression; an expression so soft
and so wooing that it would almost have been thought sensual, but for
the candid artless innocence, not all unblended with a touch of pensive
melancholy, which breathed from every other feature of that most lovely
and love-inspiring countenance.

Her hair, profuse even to redundance, of the richest and sunniest brown,
with a golden tinge running through it where it met the light, fell down
in soft and silky masses on either side of the pale oval face and the
swan-like neck, and waved in floods of heavy ringlets over the splendid
arch of her falling shoulders, and the dazzling fairness of her bust, so
far as it was shown by the square cut bodice of her dark velvet dress.

“Margaret,” said the young man, as he sprang forward joyously to meet
her, “my own sweet Margaret, is it at length thou? Oh! I have so long
tarried, and so—”

“Sorely tormented thyself, Lionel,” interrupted the fair girl, “is it
not so? tormented thyself with fears of I know not what, and doubts of
poor Margaret, that thou wert even half mad, between jealousy and
apprehension! Now out upon thee for a self-tormentor, and most
discourteous knight, to misdoubt thus thy true lady’s word! For did I
not promise thee, Lionel?” she added, laying aside the playful air in
which she had at first addressed him, and speaking now in the gentle but
earnest tones of pure calm affection, “did I not promise that I would
meet you here this evening, and when did I ever fail in my promise? Oh!
Lionel,” she continued, laying her hand fondly on his arm, and looking
full into his eyes with those large dark orbs of hers swimming in
mournful languor, “how, when I see you thus fiercely moved, thus
rendered doubtful and suspicious and unhappy by things of so slight
moment, how can I hope that you will bear the real crosses and
afflictions, the genuine woes and trials, of which so great a portion of
life is composed, with that serene and manly dignity, that resolute and
noble patience which alone in the end can make yourself or those who
love you happy? Oh! cast this temper, Lionel, nay but subdue it
altogether; and do not, do not, my beloved, make me too doubt and
tremble for my future.”

“Beautiful counsellor,” he answered, “I listen to your eloquent words,
your womanly and graceful counsels, and while I listen, I would swear to
guard them as my soul’s best guides; would swear to abide by them
forever; but when once your lovely face has vanished from before my
eyes, when once your sweet voice sounds in my ears no longer, when I am
once again alone, and all around me is left void and cheerless, then my
heart burns apace, and my imagination darkens, and of my very craving
and insatiate desire for your dear presence grows fear of every thing on
earth, and almost doubt of every thing in heaven. But be once mine, let
the dark dread of losing you forever be effaced from my mind, and you
shall see me calm and patient as—as thyself, my own Margaret.”

“Ah you are selfish, Lionel,” she answered. “Your very love makes you
selfish, and in the warmth of your own passions, in the anxiety of your
own impatience, you forget that I too have my trials to endure, that I
too wax at times impatient under the cold constraints, the small
punctualities that fetter me, that I too—” and she paused in beauteous
hesitation for a moment, until she marked the pleading glance, which he
cast to her eyes—“that I too love, and dare not disclose that love,
Lionel.”

“Ay, that is it,” he replied moodily. “All my requests are ever met with
‘I dare not;’ all my affections cast back coldly on my heart with ‘my
duty.’ I know not how these things should be; I am a poor casuist,
Margaret, but I can _feel_; and I _do_ feel that to genuine, honest,
deep-souled true love, there is nothing that may not be dared—that to
the plighted there can be no higher duty—”

“Peace, Lionel,” returned the fair girl, gravely, almost severely; “for
if you _will_ speak thus to me, I must not, and I will not hear you. You
know that, from the first, when I owned that my heart was yours, and
promised that my hand should be so likewise, I told you plainly that
although nor force, nor flattery, nor fraud, should ever make me the
wife of another, yet never would I swerve from a daughter’s obedience,
though my heart-strings should burst asunder in the strife between my
love and my duty. You know all this of old, dear Lionel; then wherefore
torture yourself thus, and afflict me, by these wild and unprofitable
outbreaks. You are assured that I love you, with all the truth and
strength of a young maid’s first affection; you have my promise to be
yours, or to die a heart-widowed maiden; you know, that the obstacles
between us are no wise insurmountable; that my good father, although
somewhat over tenacious, and self willed on points which he deems
essential, is kind and gracious; that he loved you well—”

“Loved me!” exclaimed the young man, impetuously, “loved me! ay! fondled
me when I was a curled stripling, as one would fondle an ape or a
popinjay! loved me, forsooth! until he found that I aspired to his fair
daughter’s hand, and then—spurned me—spurned me from his door like a
nameless cur! Loved me! Great God! I marvel at you, Margaret!”

“And I both marvel at you, and grieve for you, Lionel,” cried the fair
girl, indignantly. “You are unkind, unreasonable, and ungenerous. I
thought you had come hither to say farewell, before riding forth to win
honor in the field of loyalty; I thought you had come hither to speak
kindly with the woman you pretend to love, the woman whom you may not
see again for months, for years, perhaps forever. I thought you had come
hither as a man, to console a fond girl’s sorrows, to point a sad girl’s
hopes, to strengthen a frail girl’s weakness. I thought you had come
hither, nobly and manfully, and generously, as it should beseem the
king’s cavalier, to give and to derive strength for the endurance of
long separation, the struggling against hard trial—and how do I find
you, captious, unreasonable, jealous-spirited, unkind—seeking to
afflict, not to console; to take away, not to give hope; to unnerve, not
to strengthen. Now, out upon you, Lionel, I say—out upon you, and for
shame! Is this the frame of mind wherein a gentleman should part from
the lady of his love? Is this the high prophetic spirit which pointed
you erewhile to fields of honor, and to deeds of glory, which should
perforce win the consent—the reluctant consent, if you will—of my
father, and compel him to be proud of his daughter’s chosen husband,
even as he was fond of his daughter’s youthful playmate? Out upon you, I
say, Lionel. It almost shames me to confess that I have loved, to
confess that I still love one so high and spirited to aim at great
things afar off, so faint-souled when it comes to the touch to win
them.”

She spoke fervently, indignantly; and as she spoke her tall form seemed
to dilate to a grander and more majestic height, and her soft blue eye
flashed, and her pale cheek kindled with the glow of proud and generous
emotion.

Lionel gazed at her half in admiration, half in wonder; for though he
had seen her in many moods, and admired her loveliness in many guises,
never had he seen so much of animation, so much of high-born, haughty
fire in her air, as at this moment; yet, though his mind was moved by
her eloquent words, and his heart touched by the justice of her tender,
although spirited remonstrance, he answered again ungenerously,
resisting the promptings of his better nature, which would have led him
to cast himself down at her feet, and confess his injustice and
ill-temper; but no, man to the last, unjust to woman, he kicked against
the pricks of conscience, and said harshly,

“Proud! proud!—you are proud, too, Margaret. There spoke the temper of
Sir Hugh! There spoke the haughty heart of the proud Claverings.”

“And God forbid,” she replied, meeting his gaze with a firm yet
melancholy eye, “that in my tongue should not speak the temper of my
noble father—for it is a temper all of loyalty, and nobleness, and
honor. God forbid that in my breast there should not beat the haughty
heart of the Claverings, for in their haughtiness to the high they ever
have borne themselves humbly to the low; and in their pride toward the
proud and great, they ever have protected the poor and the forlorn. God
forbid, I say, Lionel Thornhill, God forbid that I should not be
proud—for I am proud only of gentle blood, and gentle deeds, and
honorable bearing. And you, too, sir, should rejoice in that pride of
mine; for had I not been proud, too proud to value wealth, or rank, or
title, apart from that nobility of soul which alone gives them value,
proud enough to esteem the man of my choice, honored by his own virtues
only, and his innate and natural grandeur, far above loftier suitors,
then had I never said to thee, ‘I _do_ love, Lionel,’ never had brought
my pride to be humbled thus, by reproach whence I should have met
gratitude; by insult, whence I should have looked for support. But it
matters not. If I have erred, I can retrace my steps; and I have erred,
sir, erred fearfully, if not fatally. I fancied you all that was high
and great, all that was generous and gentle, all that was true and
tender, all that was chivalrous and courteous. I worshiped you almost as
a god; my eyes are opened, and I find you—a mere man!—and a man of no
manly mould. We have both been mistaken, Lionel. You never have known me
in my strength, nor I you in your weakness. But I will neither upbraid
nor explain. Better to part now forever, with warm hearts, and no
unkindly feelings, than to be linked irretrievably together, and find,
too late, that we are uncongenial souls, and wear out years of bickering
and growing coldness, and hate, perhaps, before we die—”

“Hate!” exclaimed Lionel, now alarmed by her earnestness, despite his
wayward mood, and fearful, at length, that he had gone too far—“and
could _you_ hate? could you hate _me_, Margaret?”

“I could do more,” she replied, “I told you that you know me not. I
could despise, if I found you worthless.”

“But I am not—I am not worthless, Margaret. Great God! I worthless! I
who would lay down life to win honor, honor itself to win you—”

“To lay down honor were the way to lose, not win me.”

“_You_ are unjust now, Margaret. You go about to put constructions on my
words, to warp my phrases from their meaning, to torture my thoughts
into evil. _You_ are unjust and ungenerous, and unkind. I will waste
neither words nor affection on you any longer—hate me you may, despise
me if you can, proud girl; but you shall not wring my heart thus. I cast
you from me in your pride—I renounce you. Go, go, unkind and haughty
creature, go to your gothic halls, and gaze upon your long descended
portraits, cherish your little pride with the details of bygone
greatness; go, and confess to your overbearing father that you have been
but a degenerate daughter, to stoop even in thought so low as to a
beggarly Thornhill; go, and console his wounded pride by your
repentance; go, and profess your willingness to be the bride of titled
imbecility and noble baseness, in _his_ chosen suitor. Go, I say, go,
Margaret Clavering. Go, and forget that Lionel Thornhill, whom you once
swore to love forever—that Lionel Thornhill, who now gives you back
your oath. Go, Margaret Clavering, go; and farewell for ever.”

“Farewell, Lionel Thornhill.”

And with a calm demeanor and firm step, but with a heart so full that
she fancied it would burst at every step she made to leave him, the fair
girl turned away. It was a mighty, mighty effort, and her brain reeled
dizzily, and a mist darkened her eyes. “My God,” she moaned within her
heart, “My God, how have I loved this man, that he should thus deal with
me; but it is better, it is better so to part, and God will give me
strength to bear it.” And without looking once behind her, she walked in
bitterness of spirit down that dim walk, which she had not an hour
before ascended full of glad thoughts and joyous aspirations; convinced
in her own mind that this was, indeed, a final rupture between herself
and her impetuous and reckless lover, and thoroughly determined that she
would neither return nor relent, unless on the exhibition of an altered
and amended spirit on the part of him whom she indeed loved with all the
sincere and earnest depth of a mind as powerful as it was pure, but of
whose many faults of character and temper she was already but too
painfully aware.

Nor was this resolve on her part in any degree the result of any idle
coquetry, or weak and unworthy desire to try her lover’s patience, or
exert her influence over him. It was rather the consequence of a
perception which had been long gaining upon her, that the spirit of
Lionel, although high-toned and ambitious of good and high ends, and
full of noble aspirations, was yet altogether deficient in stability and
self-reliance; that his character was marred by a sort of jealous
irritability and impatience, and that he was in no small danger of
becoming in the end that most unhappy and unamiable of beings, a
self-doubter, and a doubter of all around him.

It had been well, perhaps, for her, had nothing occurred to break her
resolution, but so it was not, not so was it like to be; for the
quarrels of lovers are proverbially of brief duration, and the temper of
Lionel was as placable as it was easily excited.

Margaret Clavering had not, therefore, gone twenty paces on her homeward
path, ere a fleet foot sounded behind her, an arm was thrown about her
slender waist, and her repentant lover was at her feet.

Five minutes more and all was forgiven and forgotten; and, arm-in-arm,
the young and beautiful pair sauntered back to the edge of the deep
tank, and there seated beneath the shade of the gigantic elms, sat till
the evening had closed in dark around them, weaving a tissue of gay
prospects for the future, exchanging protestations of eternal faith, and
consoling and confirming each the other with promises of perfect
confidence, and resolute endurance of whatever should befall them.

Before they parted, neither of the two entertained a doubt that Lionel’s
career under the banner of his lawful monarch, displayed, alas! in civil
war against his own rebellious subjects, and the glories which he would
achieve with his good sword, would reconcile Sir Hugh, in due season, to
the comparatively obscure birth and lowly fortunes of his daughter’s
suitor; and that time alone and constancy were needed to insure to both
ultimate and eternal happiness. Rings were exchanged, and locks of dark
and golden hair; and it was understood between them, that in case of any
sudden need, or perilous emergency, at sight of his ring returned to him
by a trusty messenger, Lionel Thornhill should return hither with all
speed of horse and man, and look to meet his faithful mistress—faithful
through life and unto death, by that same tank, on whose green edge they
parted. They parted, with many a tear, and many a fond embrace. They
parted! When shall they meet again, and how?

                 *        *        *        *        *

A year had passed since Margaret and her lover parted; a year of
incessant strife and warfare throughout England; a year of suffering and
sorrow and trial to the fair young girl, such as she never had endured
before, since the day of her joyous childhood. The war, which had raged
at first so fiercely in the western counties, had now, by the partial
success of the royal arms, swept inland; and the royal host lay at
Oxford where the court was assembled, and where the loyal parliament,
for there were now two parliaments in the distracted kingdom, held their
sittings. Tidings were, it is true, in those days carried to and fro
with difficulty; split up as the whole country was by borough towns and
hamlets, by the castles of the great, and the cottages of the poor,
between the two contending factions; still, in spite of this, those who
were interested in the fortunes of the contending armies, or in the fate
of friends or relatives engaged on either side, contrived to ascertain
which way the tide of events was setting, and of which host on every
stricken field, the more and nobler victims had gone down before the
merciless surge of civil fury.

On the latter point, unhappily, the tale, for the most part, ran one
way; for while the parliamentarians, even in their most galling and
disastrous routs, lost only a few low-born fanatics, pimple-nosed
serving-men, as Oliver himself has set down the bulk of the rebel
forces, small shop-keepers, or broken farmers; the king’s army, even in
its most glorious victories, had to deplore the fall of the good, the
great, the far-descended, and the noble; so that for one man of quality
and parts, and education, who had gone down on the rebel side, twenty of
higher rank, and equal merit, probity, and valor, had been lost to the
king’s supporters.

It may be easily imagined, therefore, what must have been the constant
agony of Margaret, as day after day brought tidings of some desperate
skirmish or well-fought pitched battle, or some fierce onslaught, or
slow famished leaguer; while weeks, perhaps, nay, months, elapsed before
the names of those who had fallen were clearly ascertained, to relieve
the breasts of the happy from anguish for a while, and to plunge their
hapless neighbors in that only sorrow for which there is no earthly
medicine.

Thus far, that last stroke had been spared to Margaret; nay, hitherto
from all that she had learned of her lover’s career in arms, she had
derived unmixed satisfaction, and had been led at first to form sanguine
hopes of the accomplishment of all her wishes.

From his first action to the last of which the tidings had arrived at
Clavering-in-the-Hollow, he had distinguished himself by his spirit, his
coolness and judgment in the council-chamber, and his fiery, impetuous
ardor on the battle-field. From a captain in Colonel Bagot’s regiment of
horse he had risen so rapidly, as to be given the command of that
regiment, on the appointment of the gallant officer who raised it to be
governor of Litchfield.

For a while, as Sir Hugh Clavering noted the encomiums passed on the
conduct of the young man, whom he had, indeed, loved until he discovered
what he considered his presumption, in aspiring to his daughter’s hand,
he had expressed some pleasure; for he was of a generous and noble
temper, although stern, unyielding, and exacting, and had even, on the
occasion of his promotion, declared at the supper-table, when the news
reached him, not without something of self-gratulation at his own
prescient sagacity, that he had always foreseen that Lionel Thornhill
would do great things, and rise to honor, should opportunity be
vouchsafed, and fortune favor him.

Unfortunately, however, poor Margaret, delighted at hearing her lover’s
praises flowing from that unaccustomed tongue, had displayed her emotion
and her joy so visibly in her flushed cheeks, clasped hands, and
sparkling eyes, that the stern old baronet at once perceived his
error—an error into which he would not have fallen, had he not been
well assured, from the unconscious manner and absolute tranquillity of
his sweet child, that absence, and time, joined to the knowledge of his
determination, had eradicated all the traces of her misplaced and, as he
hoped, transient passion from the maiden’s breast.

Once satisfied that such was not the case, with the decisive, energetic
obstinacy, which was his principal characteristic, he had resolved to
compel her at once to an union which he had long desired to bring about,
but which was so repugnant to his daughter, whom, in spite of his
severity, he loved more dearly than any thing else on earth, that
although he had often given her to understand that it must be at some
future time, he had yet so continually delayed, and so entirely forborne
to press it, that she had begun to regard it rather in the light of an
old story adhered to from pertinacity, but in truth signifying nothing,
than as a real peril, immediate, and threatening her happiness.

Now, however, changing his plans on the instant, he constantly invited
the suitor of his choice to Clavering, though still without speaking on
the subject at all to Margaret; encouraged him to persist in his
attentions, in spite of the coldness, and sometimes of the aggressive
impertinence of the overwrought maiden, and directed the servants to
treat Sir Andrew Acton in all respects as the future husband of his
daughter, and as their future master.

Margaret was not slow to perceive the meaning of these machinations, yet
she hoped still, although they wrought upon her spirit fearfully,
wrought even on her health, and dimmed the resplendence of her dazzling
beauty, that by patience and self-control, and the calm endurance of a
noble mind, she should be enabled to protract matters at least until
something should fall out which might give her an advantage over her
persecutors, in the deep and wily game they were playing against her.

Thus time wore onward, until the latter days of autumn, the autumn of
1644, were fast approaching. The dark woods of Clavering-in-the-Hollow
had changed their deep garniture of summer greenery for the sere and
melancholy russet; the dead leaves came whirling slowly down through the
still and misty atmosphere, and lay in thick decaying masses, red and
rank, over the steamy grass. The solitary fish-ponds were veiled by the
white vapors which hung over them even at noonday; and a faint
mouldering, earthy odor, reminding those who perceived it of the scent
of a burial-vault, dwelt heavily among the deep, moist woodlands, and
rendered those wild wood-paths, which were so cool and attractive in the
budding days of early spring-time, and the fierce heats of summer,
loathsome and almost insalubrious.

Even in the open lawns and trim terraced gardens which surrounded the
old hall, the faint and sickly sunshine fell but for a few hours at
mid-day, and then with a melancholy and as it would seem reluctant
lustre.

A gloomy place, and solitary at the best, in such a season, was
Clavering-in-the-Hollow; but now it was doubly so, from the total
absence of all animation, all sound, or show of human life within its
precincts. Old age, and fast growing infirmities had long since debarred
Sir Hugh from his once loved field-sports; sons he had none, nor
nephews, nor kindred, except his one fair daughter; and thence it was,
that no baying of the merry fox-hound was ever heard in those deep
glades and tangled dingles; no ringing report of the birding-piece or
carbine awoke the echoes of the bare downs above; no merry cavalcades of
gorgeous cavaliers and merry ladies, with falcon on fist, and spaniel at
heel, were ever seen sweeping over those solitary lawns, and filling
those lonely places with sounds and sights of beauty.

Sir Hugh mused ever by the hearth, or pondered over some huge tome of
heraldry, or told old legends of his youth, sternly and briefly, and
with none of the garrulity of complacent old age, to the dull ears of
Sir Andrew, who, now almost a constant inmate of the Hall, listened
unmoved and stolid to tales intended for the most part to urge him on to
something of action or exertion; too indolent and listless for field
sports, too dull and unintellectual to take delight in books or
paintings, he would lounge away half the morning playing at
shovel-board, his right hand against his left; or setting the terriers
and mastiffs by the ears, or quaffing mighty tankards of toast and ale,
until the dinner hour should subject poor Margaret to the petty
persecution of his unmeaning speeches, his simpering smiles, and his
impertinent assumptions, which she affected not to perceive, and treated
with indifference, unless absolutely thrust upon her, and then with cool
contempt.

Meanwhile it was observed by the old servants, who worshiped the very
ground on which she trod, that, although in the presence of her father
and of that hated suitor she bore up with a brave front against those
small, and mean, and irritating persecutions, which act on a high and
noble spirit as the incessant drip of water on the intrenchant granite,
that although she was calm and self-possessed, and dignified, nay, at
times quick and high-spirited, and prompt at eloquent and cutting
repartee, she was, when left alone, another creature.

She, whose whole nature, in old days, was gentleness and woman
mirthfulness, who never could walk across a room, or athwart a grassy
lawn, but her gay soul would send her bounding like a happy fawn in some
unpremeditated dance-steps; she, whose lips poured forth, not from the
lack of thought, but from the very superfluity of fancy, one constant
stream of blithe imaginative song, would now sit brooding for whole
mornings in dark silence, with her hands folded in her lap, and her
eyes, hard and tearless, and abstracted, riveted on those thin, wan,
burning fingers; hearing no sounds from without, and if forced to lend
her attention, starting with a wild stare from her revery, and gazing
around her like one awakened suddenly from a deep sleep, and answering
sullenly, querulously, and at times even harshly to addresses of the
kindest meaning.

Evening after evening, when she could escape, favored by the deep
musings of her father, and the deeper potations of Sir Andrew, she would
wander away into the deep, moist woods, heedless of the chill dews and
loathsome mists, roaming the desolate paths like an unquiet ghost, and
terminating still her melancholy walks at the margin of that deep,
transparent tank, beside which she had parted from her lover.

The old forester at first, who had known and loved her mother when she
was as young and as fair, and almost as wretched as her miserable child,
was wont to follow her steps at a distance, so deeply was he impressed
with the idea that all was not right with her gentle spirit; and he had
whispered once into the ear of a fellow-servitor, as old and as faithful
as himself, that he had seen her make strange gestures with her hands,
and noticed that her lips moved constantly without giving utterance to a
sound.

But it was not long before she discovered that she was watched; and the
moment she discovered it, assuming instantly her usual calm and graceful
dignity, she turned about, left the path which she was following, and
walked directly up to the old man, where he stood half concealed by the
boll of a huge oak, and alarmed now at the consequence of his own
precaution.

Fixing her soft eyes mournfully, and with half reproachful glance, on
those of the old servant, she laid her hand lightly on his arm, and
said, with an attempt to be playful, as of old, which was in truth most
melancholy, “Ah, I have found you out for all your hiding, Jeremy. So
you were watching me in these wild woods;” and then altering her tone in
an instant, as if she had become aware that the effort was in vain, “but
no,” she added, “no, no—you are mistaken; I am not mad, indeed I am not
mad, only most miserable; though God knows, and he only, how soon they
may make me mad also. Now listen to me, Jeremy, you must promise me
here, and now, that you will do from this time forth whatever I may ask
of you. I know that in old times you were good to my mother, and now,
God help me, unless it be you alone, there is no one left to be good to
her daughter. Say, will you promise me, old Jeremy?”

“I will—I will, Mistress Margaret,” replied the old man, moved even to
tears by the earnest incoherency of her address. “I will, if they kill
me for it! I will do what you bid me, though it be to lose my own life,
or—” and he bent his brows darkly, and clenched his hand and repeated
in a deep whisper, “or—or to take that of others!”

For one moment she gazed at him so wistfully and so wildly, that he
imagined that he had hit upon her meaning, and that she only lacked the
nerve to speak out her desire openly. He fixed his eye, therefore,
firmly and confidently on hers, and tapping the butt of the heavy
cross-bow, which lay in the hollow of his left arm, with the fore-finger
of his right, “There is no doubt,” he said, “nor any danger. I can send
a broad arrow through his heart, as he rides home some night in his
cups, I warrant me, and none the wiser.”

“Hush! hush!” replied the girl severely. “_You_ must not speak of such
things, nor _I_ think of them. You misunderstand me, and offend me.” But
it was remarkable that her cheek did not pale, nor her lip quiver, nor
her soft eye blanch, nor any start of disgust or horror shake her frame,
at that dark and bloody proposition. A little month before, and she had
recoiled in awe and loathing, had fled in utter scorn and hatred from
any one who should have dared to impute such meaning to her words. But
now she listened calmly, and though she refused and rebuked the offer,
she did so with an unmoved and deliberate demeanor, as if she were
herself familiar with thoughts of blood and death; as if she had
accustomed herself to envisage such ideas calmly, perchance herself to
look at man’s worst enemy or best friend, as it may be, no longer
through a glass darkly, but steadily, and face to face.

It must have been, indeed, strange misery, awful despair, which had
changed a being so merry and innocent, so delicate and womanly, and
gentle, into one so resolved and stern, and so calm in her resolution,
whether for good or evil.

“No, no,” she continued, “you must promise me, in the first place, never
to follow or watch my steps any more, but, on the contrary, to observe
others, lest they do so; and if you see or suspect any one attempting
it, frustrate or intercept him. Do you promise me this?”

“I swear it.”

“It is well. Now tell me, how long shall it take, with the utmost speed
of man and horse, taking relays wherever they may be had, to reach
Oxford.”

“I will be bound to do it, Mistress Margaret, between sunrise to-morrow
and noon the third day hence; a younger man might do it quicker by well
nigh a day; but I am near to fourscore years old now, and my limbs grow
stiff, and my breath fails, but my will is good, lady, and my heart is
as stout as ever.”

“I doubt it not, Jeremy; and that will do right well. Now mark me. I may
have need to send ere long to Oxford a messenger whom I can trust, and
may have no occasion to speak with you. See, here is gold, thirty broad
pieces. Now observe this ring which I wear; if I send it to you at any
hour of night or day, or give it you myself, or drop it in your path
that you find it, tarry not for one moment, but take horse and ride—and
ride for life, for life, and—” here she dropped her voice, and caught
the old man by his hand, and whispered in his ear—“bear it to Lionel
Thornhill, and with your own hand place it in his hand. Do you mark?—Do
you comprehend? Will you do my bidding?”

“If life and limb hold out, I will.”

“Enough! I ask no more. God’s blessing on your head, and a lone orphan’s
prayers for your spirit’s rest, if you be true—the curse of Judas on
your soul if you betray me. Farewell, and remember.”

She wrung his hard hand, and turned away abruptly, and rushed homeward
with a heart perhaps a little lighter that it had unbosomed thus to a
true ear something of its sorrows. In the meantime events were drawing
on rapidly, and the crisis was at hand yet more nearly and more suddenly
than she imagined.

When the supper-bell rang, which it did within ten minutes after her
return, and she descended into the great hall, she found her father,
instead of sitting, as usual, in his large arm-chair by the fireside
half dozing, was striding to and fro across the oaken floor, speaking
with great animation, and holding in his hand a news-letter, as the rare
and incomplete gazettes of the time were called, while Acton, listless
as usual, and without one spark of animation apparent in his inert but
handsome features, sat toying with a terrier dog, and provoking it to
bite at his fingers, and then beating it for doing so.

“Have you news from the host, father,” cried she, as she saw how he was
employed, “is it well for the good cause?”

“Great news, and gallant doings, daughter,” replied the old man quickly.
“Basing-House has been gloriously relieved by valiant Colonel Gage, and
a small band of partisans, who have slain thrice their number of the
Roundheads; and the king’s army has gone into winter-quarters with
higher hopes than it has yet had cause to entertain of bringing this war
to a close in the next campaign.”

“Great news, indeed, and happy. Let me see the news-letter, father.”

“Not now, not now, darling,” replied the old man; “let us to table now,
the goose-pie is growing cold, and your lover here has been looking
angrily at the baron of beef these ten minutes.”

“My lover!” she exclaimed, in tones of ineffable disdain, and gazed on
him with wide eyes of cold astonishment.

“A very true, if a very humble one, fair Mistress Margaret,” replied the
indolent baronet, sauntering up to her, and offering his hand to lead
her to the table.

“No one can be a lover of mine, Sir Andrew,” she replied, very shortly,
“who is not a lover of honor also. In times like these, no lady should
smile on any suitor but him who dares the furthest, and does the most
for the king’s cause;” and refusing his offered hand, she walked by
herself to her place, and did the honors of the coming meal, which
passed in gloomy and unsocial silence.

When it was ended, however, and they had all retired into the
withdrawing-room where the lamps were lighted, and a wood-fire sparkling
cheerfully, Margaret possessed herself of the forgotten news-letter,
while her father returned to his heraldic musings, and the baronet
applied himself to seek consolation for his late rebuff, in the ample
spiced posset, which was set, with wine and comfits and manchet-bread,
on the board before him.

Suddenly, springing to her feet in great excitement, and letting the
news-letter, which she yet held in her hand, fall by her side at arm’s
length, Margaret cried out in shrill tones,

“Why, father, dearest father, why, I beseech you, did you not tell me
this, for this is, indeed, great news”—and she burst into a flood of
passionate tears; but they were tears of joy. Alas! alas! poor Margaret,
the last tears of joy that she should thenceforth shed forever.

“What, what!” cried the old man, startled by her vehemence, and by her
sudden fit of weeping, “what tidings? I did tell you, surely.”

“Not,” she returned, forgetting every thing in the joy of the moment,
“not that our friend and neighbor, Colonel Thornhill, has been stricken
a banneret by the king’s own hand, for his glorious deeds in the relief
of Basing-House; not that he has been ennobled, and created a
baronet—Thornhill of Thornhill-Royal. Oh, happy, happy day!”—and again
she burst into tears, and clasped her hands to her heart, as if she were
fearful that it would burst from the excess of happiness.

“And, I beseech you, what may it concern Mistress Margaret Clavering,”
asked silly Andrew Acton, “that a beggerly gentleman, scarcely a
gentleman, indeed, at all, should be rapped over the costard with the
flat of an old rapier, under a rag of painted bunting?”

“What does it concern me, sir?” she burst forth, her eyes lightning
glorious indignation as she spoke, “that my promised husband has won
deathless honor, by his good sword, in a great and righteous cause? Whom
should it, then, concern—or what should concern me more than such
tidings?”

“Your promised husband, Mistress Margaret!”

“Your promised husband, minion!” thundered Sir Hugh, in almost
inarticulate fury.

“My promised husband!”

“I thought I had that honor!” faltered the witless baronet.

“You thought, sir—you _thought_!” she replied, contemptuously. “This is
the first time I have ever heard that _you thought_ at all! Now, mark me
well, Sir Andrew Acton, and let it, I pray you, be once and for all. I
think you never asked me to become your wife; and I know, that if you
had done so, and if you had been a man and a gentleman, instead of a
paltroon and a winebibber, and almost an idiot, I had made answer, as I
make answer now—never! never! never! The wife of the grave, if God will
it so, but the wife of Sir Andrew Acton, never! Now are you answered,
sir? If you are, and if you have one drop of gentle blood in your veins,
one touch of gentle feeling in your heart, you will torment me no
further, but begone, and leave me, as you have made me, wretched.”

But he simpered, and stood there unabashed, dangling his bonnet, and
shuffling his feet, and making no movement to withdraw, until Sir Hugh,
who saw that the decisive moment had arrived, bowed his head gravely and
said, “I pray you leave us awhile, now, Sir Andrew; I would confer alone
with my daughter. I will see you again to-morrow.”

Then he attempted a sort of shuttling bow, and left the room awkwardly,
like a cowed cur, fearful of the lash; but when they were left alone,
the obstinate old man stood up, and walking straight to his daughter,
shook his fore-finger sternly in her face, and said,

“You know me, Margaret. I am not a man of many words, but when I have
spoken, I never go backward from my speech.”

“I know it,” she said, firmly, “and I am of your own blood, father, and
not base-born.”

“And I have said that you shall marry Andrew Acton.”

“And I, that I will die sooner.”

“Enough of this!” he replied. “I am no dotard, to be driven from my just
purpose for a silly girl’s love-sick fancies.”

“Nor I,” she answered, “a mere puppet, to be driven to misery, and
perchance to sin, for a father’s prejudice. Oh, hear me!” she cried the
next moment, altering her tone, and throwing herself at his feet, “oh,
hear me, beloved father! spare me, but spare me this one thing! force me
not, for God’s sake, to be this odious varlet’s wife! bind me not to
this life of anguish! and I will swear never to marry any one without
your free consent; nay, I will swear never to ask for your consent;
never to meet, or see, or speak to the only man on earth whom I can
love. Oh, grant me, grant me, father, this one, this reasonable prayer.
I adjure you, by your own gray hairs, by my dead mother’s soul, do not,
do not drive me to madness and despair.”

“Margaret, listen. It is now Wednesday at evening. A ship sails from
Bristol one week hence this day, for St. Maloes. At Rennes there is a
nunnery of Ursulines, wherein my sister is the prioress. On Wednesday
next, by that ship you sail, to take your vows in that nunnery, or you
accept Sir Andrew Acton as your husband. Are you answered? I have
spoken.”

“I am answered,” she replied, rising slowly to her feet. “And I, too,
have spoken—I will die sooner. May God forgive you, father, you know
not unto what you drive me.”

She moved away as if to leave the room, but ere she reached the door she
turned again, and stretching out her arms, cried in a piteous voice,
“One boon, at least, one boon, my father. On Tuesday night you shall
have my answer; but, oh! for the love of God, let me not during this one
week, be tormented by his hateful presence.”

“Be it so,” replied the old man, thinking that she was about to yield.
“Whither go you now?”

“To bed, to bed. Would that I never might rise thence any more.”

But ere she laid her down, she took a large pair of scissors and clipped
the circle of her ring asunder, unseen by her waiting-woman; and then
giving it to her, bade her carry it to old Jeremy, the forester, and let
him bear it to the goldsmith at Stratford the next morning.

Day after day lagged on—night after night crept on, in cloud or in
starlight, over her sleepless couch; and she waxed paler every day, and
thinner, and more ghost-like. She never spoke, or smiled, or left her
chamber, except to go through the wretched semblance of partaking her
father’s meals; but sat muttering inarticulate words, and sometimes
wringing her hands, when she was alone; but when others were present,
perfectly calm and tranquil, though very sad and silent.

The third day came, and she grew restless and eager. There was a hard,
red spot on her cheek-bones, and an unnatural glitter in her clear,
ghastly eye. Her hand trembled nervously; she was quick in her mood, and
irritable to her attendants—a quenchless and insatiate thirst tormented
her.

The fourth day came. It was the blessed Sabbath; but for the first time
in her life she refused to accompany Sir Hugh to the village church, and
kept her chamber during the noon-day meal. As sunset drew near she
became more impatient; and as the early twilight settled down on the
sere woods and silent waters, she donned her cloak, and sallied forth
alone, and took her way up the accustomed path toward the tank, which
still bears her name—Margaret’s Well.

It was quite dark when she returned, wet with the night-dew, and
shivering with cold; but she declined all refreshment, knelt down by her
bed-side, and prayed fervently, and laid her down, not to her sleep, but
to think, to hope, to despair.

The fifth day came, and again she went not forth until evening; again
took her sad, fruitless walk; again returned, colder and sadder and more
silent than before, again dismissed her woman, and prayed, and laid her
down in mute and tearless agony.

The next day came—the last; and she must either accept Acton’s hand
this night, or on the morrow quit her native land forever.

Meanwhile anxiety had grown into fear, concerning the absence of the old
forester, who had not been seen for a week; and the country was searched
far and near, but no tidings were had of him, and it was whispered that
the old man had been murdered. But the secret had leaked out among the
household of the terrible decision which was that day to be made by
their young mistress; and the fate of the forester was forgotten in the
horrid anticipation of something more awful yet.

At noon, Sir Andrew Acton returned to the Hall, for the first time that
week, and was closeted with Sir Hugh in his own study. But Margaret knew
not, heeded not—she was immersed in the deepest and most awful
meditation.

Just before sunset, she braided her hair firmly, trained her beautiful
ringlets to fall down over her fair shoulders, arrayed herself from head
to foot in spotless white, as a virgin bride, and then wrapping a
heavily-furred mantle round her, and covering her head with its
capuchin, or hood, stole forth softly, and sped with a quick, silent
step up the dank, gloomy wood-path.

“I will fly with him—I will fly with him, if he be here,” she muttered.
“This absolves me from all duty; and if not—Jesu, Jesu have mercy, and
forgive!”

She reached the tank, and gazed about her earnestly. All was lonely and
dark and silent as the grave.

“Lionel!” she shrieked aloud. “Lionel!—Lionel Thornhill!” and her wild,
thrilling tones were re-echoed many times from wood and hill, but no
answer came—and again all was silent.

The sun had already set—the distant clock from the stable turret struck
seven.

“It is past the time,” she said calmly. “And thou, too, hast forsaken
me. But I will wait—I will wait yet one hour. When we last met here, I
chid him for impatience; I will not, therefore, be—impatient.”

And she laughed bitterly. Oh! what an awful sound was that! how
fearfully indicative of a broken and disordered spirit? and she folded
her arms on her bosom, and sat down at the base of the very tree beneath
which he had sat at their last meeting—sat down awaiting the next chime
of the distant clock.

The dews fell heavily around her; the sere leaves dropped upon her
motionless head; an aquatic bird cried several times hoarsely and
fearfully from the ponds below, but she moved neither hand nor foot, nor
spoke, nor sighed, nor trembled—but sat there a dark statue.

What awful thoughts passed through her mind in that strange place, in
that terrific hour, one knows alone; what fearful misery it was that
drove that gay and innocent young spirit to such despair, one knows
alone——may HE be merciful.

The stable clock struck eight. Then she arose and cast off her shrouding
cloak, and stood in the murky night pure in her virgin vestments, cold
and resolved, and—was she fearless?

She knelt her down, and buried her face in her hands, and prayed, or
seemed to pray, for a little space. Then she arose again, listened one
little moment—

“It is too late—too late. Jesu, forgive us both! Jesu, sweet Jesu!”

There was a heavy plash, a sullen plunge! two or three bubbling sobs,
and dull undulations of the water followed, and all again was solitude
and silence.

The dews fell heavily, the leaves dropped silently into the tank above
her, once more the aquatic night-bird shrieked in the sedges—but that
immortal soul had gone before its Maker and its Judge.

It was, perhaps, half an hour later, when the clang of a horse’s hoof
came thundering at mad speed down the steep hill-side—it ceased—a
rapid footstep followed it, bounding in frantic haste along the rugged
path. A loud voice, trembling with anxiety, cried—“Margaret! Margaret!”
but Margaret was not—to hear those beloved accents.

Lionel Thornhill rushed into the little space, but all was vacant. A
nameless feeling led him to the base of that tree; he trod on something,
he knew not what, of a strange texture, stopped—it was Margaret’s
mantle.

One bound to the tank’s marge, and there, revealed in the gloom of
night, in the blackness of those awful waters, by the brightness of her
own purity, he found his lost one.

At that same hour, in Margaret’s withdrawing-room, sat two men by a
blazing hearth, with cheerful lamps above, and a steaming posset cup
between them.

They talked, they laughed, they were merry.

Sir Hugh Clavering and Sir Andrew Acton.

There came a strangely sounding footstep, fleet as the wind, yet heavy
as lead, on the road before the house. The hall door was cast violently
open—the strange step came direct across the oaken hall, across the
antechamber, along the corridor, every door dashed open with rude
force—the door of the withdrawing-room the last; and in the door-way,
with that snow-white, dripping figure, its long locks of gold, lank and
disheveled, its white robes clinging to the unrivalled form, cast a dead
weight upon his shoulder, stood Lionel Thornhill, the brave banneret,
the successful soldier.

One stride brought him to the table, one stroke swept posset-cup and
goblets from the board. Then, reverentially he composed the dead form
thereon, while the soul-stricken pair gazed on him, scarcely conscious,
and aghast, and at a single motion removing his hat and unsheathing his
rapier,

“If that,” he said, pointing to the body, “if that sight slay not,
swords are useless. For the rest, you, who have done this thing, and
another that is yet to be, look to it! Margaret! Margaret! I tarried
not; and if I came too late—nor do I tarry now—Margaret! Margaret! my
wife, I come!”

And with the word, he drove the sword into his own breast with so true
an aim, and a hand so steady, that the point cleft his heart, and he was
a dead man, while yet he stood upon his feet.

They lie in nameless graves—their murderers beneath emblazoned
monuments. No record is preserved of them, save in this humble tale, and
in these touching words carved on the brink of that fatal tank:—

                            Margaret’s Well.
                               Stranger,
                           who drinketh here,
                     Pray for the soul of Margaret.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                                 NIGHT.


                             BY ALICE GREY.


    Night on the mountain—the beautiful night!
    The bright stars are beaming with silvery light;
    And the pale crescent moon, sailing calmly on high,
    Looks down on the earth from her home in the sky;
    Oh the sunniest day has no lovelier sight,
    Than the tranquil repose of the beautiful night.

    Night in the valley—the tall forest trees
    In whispers reply to the voice of the breeze;
    The streamlet glides softly amidst its green bowers;
    The air is perfumed by the night-blooming flowers;
    And the song of the bulbul, the fire-fly’s light,
    Proclaim through the valley, night, beautiful night.

    For soon—far too soon—comes the loud busy day;
    Slowly and sadly the stars fade away,
    As if even they, in their glory, could grieve
    A world of such exquisite beauty to leave;
    But with eve they’ll return, and their pure holy light
    Long, long shall illumine the beautiful night.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                       SETTLEMENT OF THE GENESEE.


                        BY WILLIAM H. C. HOSMER.


      Let Ruin lift his arm, and crush in dust
        The glittering piles and palaces of kings,
      And, changing crown and sceptre into rust,
        Doom them to sleep among forgotten things!—
        Let Time o’ershadow with his dusky wings,
      Warriors who guilty eminence have gained,
        And drank renown at red, polluted springs—
      Sacked peaceful towns—the holy shrine profaned
    And to their chariot-wheels the groaning captive chained!

      But the self-exiled Britons, who behind
        Left Transatlantic luxuries, and gave
      Their parting salutations to the wind,
        And, scorning the vile languor of the slave,
        Rocked with the little May Flower on the wave,
      To immortality have prouder claim:
        Let the bright Muse of History engrave
      Their names in fadeless characters of flame,
    And give their wondrous tale an everlasting fame!

      No empty vision of unbounded power—
        No dream of wild romance—no thirst for gold,
      Lured them from merry England’s hall and bower—
        Her Sabbath chime of bells, her hamlet old;
        At home religious bigotry controlled
      The struggling wing of thought; a gloomy cloud,
        Charged with despotic wrath, above them rolled;
      And haunts they sought where man might walk unbowed,
    And sacred Truth might raise her warning voice aloud.

      No waving flag, gay plume or gleaming casque
        Proclaimed them masters of war’s bloody trade;
      Less daring spirits from the mighty task
        In terror would have shrunken: tender maid,
        And daughter gently reared, for God to aid
      Their feeble natures, breathed the words of prayer,
        And in Heaven’s panoply their soul’s arrayed—
      Speeding the good work on, though frail and fair,
    When sterner manhood felt the faintness of despair.

      Old Sparta in exulting tones may boast,
        Of ancient matrons who could deck the bier
      Of sire and husband, slain where host met host,
        And, in the flush of pride, forget the tear:
        Our pilgrim mothers, too, could conquer fear,
      And stifle sorrow; but their hearts enshrined
        The soft affections: Who loves not to hear
      Their praises sung?—their constancy of mind,
    Amid thy daughters’ Greece, we strive in vain to find!

      White lay the snow flakes on the lonely shore,
        And Winter flung his banner on the blast—
      Behind swept angry waters, and before
        Spread waving woods, dark, limitless and vast,
        When a new continent received at last
      Our houseless sires. The red man, gaunt and grim,
        On the strange scene his falcon vision cast;
      And nameless terror shook his tawny limb
    While, drowning ocean’s roar, went up their triumph-hymn;

      And when the bold survivors of the band
        Reached the decaying autumn-time of life,
      And locks were white, and palsied was the hand,
        Barbaric swarms, with axe and deadly knife,
        And painted, plumed, and quivered for the strife,
      Rushed from their trackless lairs to burn—despoil—
        Butcher the cradled babe, the pleading wife;
      Then swept the nodding harvest from the soil,
    And scattered on the wind the fruits of patient toil.

      When the green, shrouding moss of time o’ercrept
        Mounds in the vale and on the mountain-side,
      Where the stern founders of our empire slept,
        Improvement, moving with gigantic stride,
        Still hurried onward:—patient Labor plied
      The ringing axe; and from his old domain
        Fled drowsy Solitude; while far and wide
      The scene grew bright with fields of golden grain,
    And orchards robed in bloom on hill and sunny plain.

      The wand of Enterprise to queenly states
        Gave wondrous being; rivaling the spell
      That reared round Thebes a wall of many gates
        When proud Amphion[A] swept his chorded shell,
        The tuneful gift of Hermes: pastoral bell,
      With tinkling murmurs, woke savannahs green,
        And roused wild echoes in the woody dell,
      Where late the cougar, of terrific mien,
    Devoured the fawn, or rocked upon his perch unseen.

      With his penates, to the distant shores
        Of our broad western streams, Adventure hied,
      And pierced the soil for rich metallic ores,
        Or, with a keen, prophetic vision, spied
        An unborn mart upon the river-side;
      While Traffic trimmed her bark to brave the gale,
        And meet the terrors of a chartless tide—
      In nameless havens furled her tattered sail,
    Or toward Pacific seas, pursued the red man’s trail.

      The buskined lords of bow and leathern quiver
        Were thy admiring sponsors long ago,
      And named thee “Genesee,” my native river,(1)
        For pleasant are thy waters in their flow!
        Though on thy sides no bowers of orange grow,
      The free and happy in thy valley throng,
        O’er which the airs of health delight to blow—
      No richer, brighter charms than thine belong
    To streams immortal made by proud Homeric song.

      Although thy tide that winds through pastures now,
        By fleecy flock and lowing kine is drank,
      A river of the wilderness wert thou,
        When mixed in deadly combat on thy bank
        The yelling Savage and impetuous Frank:[B]
      Thy wave lifts up no murmuring voice to tell
        Where the red, bubbling stream of carnage sank,
      When rattling gun, loud groan and fiendish yell
    Thy hollow murmur drowned, and gasping valor fell:

      And Nature, in the moss of time attired,
        On her green throne of forest sat, when came
      The host of Sullivan, with vengeance fired,
        To rouse upon thy shore the beast of game,
        And wrap the lodges of fierce tribes in flame,
      Fresh from unhappy Wyoming, and red
        With scalps of hoary age and childless dame:
      Gone from thy borders are the oaks that spread
    Their yellow, autumn palls above the martial dead.

      Eastward the soldiers of that campaign bore
        Glad tidings of unpruned but pleasant lands,
      Washed by thy surges, like those spies of yore
        Who brought ripe grapes from Eschol to the bands
        By Moses led across the desert sands.
      Regardless of the sons of Anak, soon
        Bold men, of dauntless hearts and iron hands,
      Left home, while life was in its active noon,
    To hear the forest wind thy flood’s deep voice attune.

      They fled not, like scourged vassals in the night,
        From dungeon, rack and chain, with footstep fleet:
      The halls of their nativity were bright,
        And fraught with recollections, fond and sweet,
        Of childish hours; and hearts that loved them beat
      Beneath their pleasant roofs: forsaking all—
        They roused the wood-wolf from his dim retreat,
      And boldly reared the gloomy cabin wall
    Of rude, misshapen logs, amid the forest tall.

      They little thought, while roving near the site
        Of thy proud city,[C] deafened by the sound
      Of waters tumbling from a fearful height,
        And darkened by the wilderness around,
        That soon its hollow roaring would be drowned,
      By the deep murmur of the mighty crowd,
        Amid thick domes, with tower and turret crowned;
      The din of whirling cars, and clatter loud
    Of mills by human art with iron lungs endowed:

      Nor did they dream that, in communion grand,
        Broad Erie’s wave, and Hudson’s mighty tide,
      Within a channel shaped by mortal hand,
        Ere half a century elapsed, would glide:
        That soon fair Buffalo, in queenly pride,
      Would spring the Carthage of our inland seas,
        And wave her sceptre o’er the waters wide—
      To shipping change the patriarchal trees,
    And launch a thousand barks to battle with the breeze.

      The foreign tourist gazing on thy vale,
        By rural seat and stately mansion graced,
      Stands mute with wonder when he hears the tale
        Of thy redemption from the sylvan waste:
        That only fifty years their rounds have traced
      Since Phelps, the Cecrops of thy realm(2) forsook
        The peopled haunts of Genius, Art and Taste,
      While doubting friends with apprehension shook,
    And love upon his form fixed sad, regretful look.

      On the broad green acclivities that round
        The lovely lake of Canandaigua rise,
      The groves in deep, majestic grandeur frowned,
        Hiding their gloomy secrets from the skies,
        And scarred and worn by storms of centuries,
      When painted hordes, with streaming locks of jet,
        Terrific garb, and wildly glancing eyes,
      Him and his daring band in treaty met
    Though late with Christian gore the tomahawk was wet.

      A magic mirror girt by emerald,
        In shade embowered, the diamond waters lay;
      While the proud eagle, king-like, fierce and bald,
        Throned on the blasted hemlock, eyed his prey:
        Sweet wild-flowers, guarded from the blaze of day,
      Delicious odor on the soft air flung;
        And birds of varied note and plumage gay
      On shrubs and vines, with ripening berries hung,
    Folded their glittering wings, and amorously sung.

      The water-rat and darting otter swam
        Amid the reedy flags that fringed the shore;
      And the brown beaver to his rounded dam,
        With patient toil, the tooth-hewn sappling bore:
        The lonely heron, surfeited with gore.
      Smoothed on the pebbly beech his plumage dank:
        Earth, sky and wave an air of wildness wore,
      And nimbly down the green and sloping bank
    Came stag and timid hind, on silver hoof and drank.

      The pen of voiceful narrative may well
        That solemn congress in the forest call
      A thrilling and romantic spectacle:
        The trunks of oaken monarchs, huge and tall,
        Were the rough columns of their council hall;
      Thick boughs were interwoven overhead,
        And winds made music with their leafy pall:
      Below a tangled sea of brushwood spread,
    Through which, to far-off wild, the beaten war-path led.

      Few were the whites in number, and about
        The council-fire were gathered dusky throngs,
      From whose dark bosoms time had not washed out
        The bitter memory of recent wrongs.
        Some longed to wake their ancient battle-songs,
      And on the reeking spoils of conflict gaze—
        Bind the pale captive to the stake with thongs,
      And hellish yells of exultation raise,
    While shriveled up his form, and blackened in the blaze.

      The compact for a cession of their land
        Was nearly ended, when a far-famed chief
      Rose with the lofty bearing of command,
        Though lip and brow denoted inward grief:
        Nought broke the silence save the rustling leaf,
      And the low murmur of the lulling wave;
        He drew his blanket round him, and a brief,
      But proud description of his fathers gave,
    Then spoke of perished tribes, and glory in the grave.

      “And who be ye?” he said, in scornful tones,
        And glance of kindling hate—“Who offer gold
      For hunting-grounds made holy by the bones
        Of our great seers and sagamores of old?
        Men who would leave our hearths and altars cold—
      Unstring the bow, and break the hunting-spear—
        Our pleasant huts with sheeted flame infold,
      Then drive our starving, wailing race in fear
    Beyond the western hills, like broken herds of deer.

      “Wake, On-gue-hon-we![D] Strike the pointed-post,
        And gather quickly for the conflict dire;
      You Long-knives are forerunners of a host,
        Thick as the sparks when prairies are on fire;
        Let childhood grasp the weapon of his sire—
      Arm, arm for deadly struggle, one and all
        While wives and babes to secret haunts retire:
      The ghosts of buried fathers on ye call
    To guard their ancient tombs from sacrilege or fall!”

      Dark forms rose up, and brows began to lower,
        While many a savage eye destruction glared;
      But one came forth in that portentous hour,
        Ere shaft was aimed, or dagger fully bared,
        And hushed the storm. Old Houneyawus dared
      His voice upraise; and by his friendly aid
        The knife was sheathed—the pioneer was spared;
      Above that humane warrior of the shade
    Let marble tell the tale in lines that cannot fade.

      All hail our early settlers! though with storm
        Their sky of being was obscured and black,
      And Peril, in his most appalling form,
        Opposed their rugged march, and warned them back:
        They faltered not, or fainted in the track
      That led to empire; but with patience bore
        Cold, parching thirst, and fever’s dread attack;
      While ancient Twilight, to return no more,
    From far Otsego fled to Erie’s rock-bound shore.

      They toiled, though Hunger with his wasted mien,
        Stalked through their infant settlements, and night
      Lured from the gloomy cavern, gaunt and lean,
        Droves of disturbing wolves, that hated light,
        Some wan and trembling mourner to affright
      With their dismaying howls, around the place
        Where coldly still, and newly hid from sight,
      Earth folded loved ones in her damp embrace,
    Without recording tomb their forest mounds to grace.

      From clearing rude, and dismal swamp undrained,
        Fumes of decaying vegetation rose;
      While the fell genius of distemper reigned,
        And filled the newly-opening realm with woes;
        Brave manhood smiting—though his lusty blows
      Tall ranks of warrior oaks in dust had bowed,
        And robbing widowed beauty of her rose,
      Or weaving, while the voice of wail was loud,
    Round childhood, early lost, the drapery of the shroud.

      Born in the lap of plenty and of wealth,
        Mindless, too oft, are children of the sire
      Who purchased at the fearful price of health,
        And even life, their heritage. The lyre
        Should call forth music from its proudest wire
      In praise of men who brave, to bless their kind,
        Tempest, the sword, foul pestilence and fire;
      Their names in grateful hearts should be enshrined,
    When crumbled are their bones—their ashes on the wind:

      And those who left the venerated breast,
        And soil of proud New England, to reclaim
      Our smiling El Dorado of the West
        From centuries of gloom, and haunts of game
        Change to Arcadian lovelines, and tame
      The virgin rudeness of the shaded mould,
        Should not be unremembered:—on the same
      Eternal page where Fame, in lines of gold,
    Hath _pilgrim virtue_ traced, their names should be enrolled.

-----

[A]

    Dictus et Amphion, Thebanæ conditor arcis,
    Saxa movere sono testudinis, et prece blanda
    Ducere quo vellet.    _Hor. de. Art. Poet._

[B] Allusion to De Nouville’s invasion, in 1687, of the Genesee valley.

[C] Rochester.

[D] A title assumed by the Iriquois, or Five Nations, meaning “men who
surpass all others.”

                 *        *        *        *        *


                                 NOTES.

    (1) “And named thee Genesee,” &c.

The word Genesee is of Seneca origin, signifying “Pleasant Valley,” or
“Valley of Pleasant Waters.”

    (2) “Since Phelps, the Cecrops of thy realm.”

It may seem strange to many of the millions who are now reveling in the
comforts and prosperity which the last half century has diffused through
western New York, that the course of Oliver Phelps and his associates
should have been then considered so hazardous, that the whole
neighborhood of Granville, Mass., their native town, assembled to bid
them adieu—a final adieu, as many thought; for it seemed a desperate
chance that any of that intrepid band should ever return from their
enterprise through a region to which the Indian title had not been
extinguished. The wilderness was penetrated as far as Canandaigua Lake,
and I am indebted to an old number of the New York American for the
description that follows, of a treaty held on its banks with the Senecas
by Phelps and his companions.

    “Two days had passed away in negotiation for a cession of their
    land. The contract was supposed to be nearly completed, when Red
    Jacket arose. With the grace and dignity of a Roman senator, he
    drew his blanket around him, and with a piercing eye surveyed
    the multitude. All was hushed. Nothing interfered to break the
    silence, save the rustling of the tree-tops under whose shade
    they were gathered.

    “Rising gradually with his subject, he depicted the primitive
    simplicity and happiness of his nation, and the wrongs they had
    sustained from the usurpations of the white man, with such a
    bold but faithful pencil, that his Indian auditors were soon
    roused to vengeance, or melted into tears. Appalled and
    terrified, the white men cast a cheerless gaze upon the hordes
    around them. A nod from the chiefs might be the onset of
    destruction. At that portentous moment Houneyawus, known among
    the whites as Farmer’s Brother, interposed.”

                 *        *        *        *        *

[Illustration: Drawn by Ch. Bodmer      Eng^{d} by Rawdon, Wright & Hatch

Mandan Women
Engraved Expressly for Graham’s Magazine]

                 *        *        *        *        *



                      MANDAN INDIANS—LOVER’S LEAP.


We present our readers this month with two beautiful American plates.
The Mandan Indians is one of a series of the spirited pictures of
Bodmer, who, in a visit through the west and south-west, made sketches
from nature of the most striking scenes, and of incidents in Indian life
and warfare. We have still on hand several very fine pictures by this
artist; and we think we hazard nothing in saying, that, for artistic
effect and skill, these engravings are far superior to any thing that is
met with in the Magazines. The dance of the Mandan women was taken, as
represented, from a group, by Mr. Bodmer.

Our other engraving, is one of the fine series of Georgia views that we
are running through the Magazine; and the “Lover’s Leap” is another
evidence of the charming bits of scenery with which that state abounds.
We have now in the hands of artists, sketches of scenery in Virginia,
North Carolina, Ohio, and other states, and purpose in coming volumes,
to present to the readers of Graham, views of every state in the Union,
engraved in a style to do credit to the country and the work. The
American character of the embellishments and literature of Graham, are
rallying around the work thousands of true friends yearly.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                             FRANK BEVERLY.


                         BY MARY SPENCER PEASE.


Late in the evening of the last day of September, A. D. 18—, a stage
stopped at a small inn, and deposited two trunks, with their two owners:
then rattled on to its final stopping-place, six miles further.

The two trunks with their two owners were shown into the best
sleeping-room the house afforded, and left with a “dim, religious light”
for company. The light showed them (the trunk’s owners, not the trunks)
to be men—good-looking and young. Their conversation proved them to be
cousins, and on their way to Beverly Park, the home of the handsomer of
the two, whom the less handsome addressed as Frank.

“But, Ned, speaking of pictures, and furniture,” continued Frank,
interrupting himself in his description of Beverly Park and its picture
gallery, “you never have seen Clara. Three years ago she bid fair to be
a beauty. To-morrow will prove whether time has or has not fulfilled his
promise. Three years ago she was a fairy thing of sweet fifteen. I say,
Ned, did you ever see a more horrid place than this inn?”

“Yes, many.”

Frank laughed. “Any way,” said he, “you must acknowledge it is a most
dismal apology for a ‘house of entertainment for man and beast:’ I
wonder if his godship, Mr. Morpheus, ever deigns to visit it. I feel
wonderfully like making the trial. What say you, Ned, shall we court him
to wrap us in his mantle of oblivion?”

“With all my heart.”

The friends resigned themselves to sleep. Blessed be the man who first
invented _sleeping_. There is poetry in sleep: there is music in it.

Have you never watched the young child, with its fair hair reposing so
quietly in clustering curls around its cherub, happy face? Its low,
soft-breathing—one little dimpled hand grasping a toy—one fair,
rounded arm pillowing its young head. The little rosy mouth in a half
smile—smiling to the fairies that come whispering to its heart? This is
poetry. Were you never in a stage-coach with an old man for one of its
passengers, clad in the greasiest snuff-colored coat and vest
imaginable; and bearing upon them any quantity of dull brass buttons—a
round-crowned, dirty white beaver upon his red-haired Medusa-like head:
he himself fast “locked in the arms of _omnibus_,” and snoring loud
enough to awake the seven sleepers? _This_ is music.

Morning came. The landlord was duly paid, and the cousins proceeded on
their way to Beverly Park.

“Three years seems a long time to be away from one’s home, eh! Ned?”
said Frank, after they had ridden a long way in silence. “I hope you
will like my sister Clara.”

“I do not doubt that I shall, if she is any thing like her brother.”

“Thank you. These are fine old elms, are they not? I like elm trees; I
like them in the moonlight, when the silver-tipped shadows flit among
their dark green leaves; they bring to mind old ruined castles. I can
fancy ivy-clad turrets, and the soft eyes of fairy maidens gazing from
them. Their eyes, as they gleam forth from amid the night-colored
boughs, look dreamy and fitful. I see them twine, with snowy, shadowy
arms the dark green ivy amid their coal-black tresses. I love elm trees
thus bathed in moonlight, they remind me of all the wild things I have
ever read, thought or dreamed.”

“Have a care, Frank, or some one of these same moonlight nights your
imagination will carry you off _vi et armis_.”

“Never fear, Ed. But here is my home. My father had taste, had he not?”

“All around is the perfection of taste. Your father must have spent much
of his time in planning such a Paradise.”

Francis made no reply; but with all the impetuosity of his ardent nature
rushed into the house. When Edward, left to the guidance of a servant,
entered the hall, he found a fair-haired girl clasped to his cousin’s
heart—a mild-eyed matron, he knew was Frank’s mother, so strongly did
she resemble him, looking love and joy upon him.

That was a happy family assembled at Beverly Park. Within a week from
the arrival of its heir, the many chambers of the old Hall were nearly
filled with friends and relatives of the Beverlys, who had come to spend
the winter with them. So mirth was the order of the day at Beverly Park.

“Cousin Ed,” said Frank, one sunny morning, “you and Clara seem so happy
in each other, and have so much to say, there is not room for me to put
in a word: I see I am _un de trop_. Mamma is reading, I cannot talk with
her; Kate and George are at that everlasting chess-board; the Miss
Linwoods and the rest of our party are out riding, so poor I have
nothing to do, nor no one to talk with.”

“A sad case, brother mine,” said Clara, laughing.

“I’ll be revenged some way. I’ll go out on an exploring expedition, all
alone. _Au revoir!_” . . . .

Upon the grass-green banks of a flower-fringed, dancing stream, a little
child, of four bright summer suns, was playing with the pebbles at its
edge. She had the “_curlingest_” little head of gold-brown hair in the
world. Her form was faultless: her eyes—warm, soft hazel.

As the child threw the shining pebbles into the water, and laughed with
delight to see the bubbles and dimples she created, the step of a man
sounded on the mossy sward.

The child looked up but evinced no fear.

“Come here, pretty one.”

The child came bounding toward him, and peered up into his face so
winningly, that he caught her up in his arms, and kissed her young brown
eyes, and fair round cheek, until she put her little hand upon his mouth
and told him he was naughty.

“What is your name, little one?”

“Nina: What is yours?”

“Frank,” replied the other smiling. “What is your mother’s name, pretty
Nina?”

“Mamma. What is yours?”

“What is her other name beside mamma?”

“Papa calls her Agnes,” lisped the child.

“_Agneth_,” said the man; “and what, pretty one, is thy father’s name?”

“Tell me the name of yours first.”

“I have no papa, little one.”

“No papa!”

“None, little Nina; he is dead.”

“Dead! What does that mean?”

“Nina, where do you live?”

“My papa’s name is William: now tell me what dead means.”

“You could not understand me, dear child, if I were to tell you; show me
where you live and I will come and explain it all for you.”

“Over there we live,” and the child pointed to a cottage half hid among
the trees. It seemed a perfect love of a cottage. Frank felt
irresistibly tempted to go and see “Agneth;” but he merely kissed the
little Nina good-by and put her down. The child went to her pebbles and
Frank turned toward his home. He had gone but a few steps on his
homeward path, when a slight scream caused him to look around, his
little friend in attempting to cross the small bridge of planks, had
slipped and fallen into the brook. An instant more and Frank was on the
way toward Nina’s home, with Nina in his arms.

The little girl was wet and frightened, but did not seem hurt. She
nestled tremblingly in his bosom, making no complaint, save a low sob
that came less and less frequent.

“There is my mamma!” exclaimed she, as Frank entered the garden gate.

Nina sprang from his arms and ran up to her mother. Frank thought he had
never seen so beautiful a creature; she did not seem older than his
sister Clara.

“See, mamma!” eagerly said the little Nina. “Here is Frank. I fell into
the brook and he took me out. Wasn’t he a nice Frank? You must love him,
mamma.”

The mother rested her eyes, full of gratitude upon the young man: her
eyes, so dark and earnest, spoke to his soul. He felt a new life spring
up within him; a life he had only dreamed of till then. Her eyes were of
that peculiar shade of hazel, neither light nor dark, sometimes both, at
times almost blue: a ring of heaven enclosing a world of earthly love.

Agnes led the way into the cottage, and asked Frank, with a voice as
sweet as her eyes were beautiful, to follow her. She left him in the
drawing-room, taking with her the little Nina.

Frank had time to admire the rooms, as he stood drying his clothes by
the cheerful grate; the days had then begun to be somewhat chilly. All
around bespoke the most elegant simplicity, the utmost refinement. The
eye of the young man was delighted as it wandered around the
room—books, music, flowers—all was softness and ease. Frank was
enchanted. Still more was he enchanted when, all radiant, the sweet
mistress of the cottage entered. A thousand smiles of joy beamed from
every part of her face. “She brightened all over,” like Moore’s
Nourmahal. Her face was of that strictly classic mould, so beautiful
even unaccompanied by expression. Expression was her chief attraction:
the color came and left her face as shadows do beside a bright fire.
Soul was in all she did. _Her_ soul was like a blazing mass of
pearls—bright and soft. Frank was completely charmed. She thanked him
so prettily for rescuing her child—was afraid he would take cold—were
his clothes perfectly dry?

“Perfectly,” replied Frank.

They glided from one topic of conversation to another, scarcely knowing
they were talking, with so little constraint did their words flow. What
she said came so from her heart. Frank had heard the same things
uttered, but there was an indefinable charm accompanied her every word,
however commonplace the subject was.

Music came up at length. Both her piano and harp were brought into
requisition. Agnes played and sang well. Frank was an enthusiastic lover
of music, and just what and all he loved did she play. Never sang so
sweet a voice as hers.

Music! dear Music! What nurse like thee will soothe the world-worn,
weary soul? When we are sad and sullen, what will bring us to
ourselves—to _hope_ again—like music? Soft, wild music. Bellini music!

Agnes played, Frank listened. Agnes talked, Frank listened—his heart
beat a young whirlwind. Time flew by unheeded—unmarked.

Francis recollected himself before it was quite midnight, and rose to
go.

“I am so sorry William is not at home; you would like him. He is very
much like you. He went this morning to the city, and will not be home
till to-morrow.”

“William!”

“Yes. My husband.”

“True. I had forgotten.”

“But you will come again?”

Frank smiled a _bon soir_, and went home feeling as he never felt
before. He did not own to himself he was in _love_, but he _did_ own
_she_ was a _most_ lovely creation.

Clara rallied him next morning on his silence.

“You seem but moody, brother mine; what change has clouded the spirit of
your dream?”

“A spirit of beauty that ministered to my dreams last night.”

“In what shape did it come?”

“In the guise of a mermaid I suspect. Frank is very fond of such
mysterious beings.” Edward laughed as he said it. Frank thought there
was a little mischief in his cousin’s eye.

“I don’t envy him his visitant,” said Cousin George. “Mermaids are cold
creatures, I doubt if they have hearts.”

Frank tried hard to enjoy the party at Beverly Hall, but his thoughts
would wander to the cottage, and the afternoon found him again by the
side of Agnes.

Some part of every day at length saw him at the cottage; the little Nina
learned to welcome him with a wild cry of delight.

He always found some good excuse for going. Agnes was to sing him some
new song, from some new opera—or he had promised Nina a ride on his
pony—or he had not finished a discussion with the father upon some
political question.

Agnes had said right when she told Frank he would like her husband: he
_did_ like him, and the husband liked Frank, and was as glad to see him
as was either Agnes or Nina.

Little did the husband and wife dream of the chain fastened and
tightening around his heart—gnawing to that very heart’s core. He was
in a dream—a nightmare. He would have given worlds to have been able to
keep away from the cottage, from seeing Agnes, but the more he resisted
the fascination the less could he overcome it, and the more often did he
find himself at the cottage.

Agnes had too pure a heart, and loved her husband too entirely, to dream
even that Frank had other feelings for her than those of friendship. The
husband was unsuspecting—he knew not, could not know, how all in all
his bright Agnes was to the heart of Frank.

The husband and wife loved each other so truly there was no room for
doubt in the heart of either.

The winter months had nearly passed. Each day the little fairy Nina grew
more interesting and lovely: and then she loved Frank so—he _must_ go
and see her. The pretty Nina.

“How remarkably fond your brother seems of solitary rambles,” said Miss
Linwood to Clara one day.

“Very,” quietly responded Clara.

“He is a very singular young man: he has grown so melancholy and
reserved, so different from what he used to be. Don’t you think so,
Clara?”

Clara _did_ think her brother had altered. He looked so pale and seemed
so sad. Something must be the matter with him.

Something _was_ the matter with him undoubtedly. At home he was gloomy,
silent, abstracted. He lived only in the light of the brown eyes at the
cottage. He loved without owning to himself he loved. And to _her_! He
would sooner have torn out his tongue than to have sullied her pure ear
with a whisper of the maddening love that devoured his soul.

The cousins seemed to have changed characters. Edward chatted and
laughed with his lively cousin Clara from morning to night. Frank was
silent and thoughtful.

The gay party at the Hall wondered not a little at the repeated absences
of Frank.

Edward declared his cousin had found some sweet simplicity of a being at
whose shrine to worship.

“I would be willing to wager my happiness for a year to come, that you
_are_ in love, brother mine,” said Clara, one day when the inmates of
the Hall were assembled in the library. “You are not the same brother
Frank you were last autumn. I shall have to call you Francis, for you
are not _frank_.”

Frank smiled, made some gay repartee—half acknowledged, in a laughing
way, Clara was right.

The party grew more merry, and Francis, from being very low-spirited,
became the merriest there. Sparkling words fell from his lips, and
sparkling glances fell from his eyes, in uncontrolled profusion.

“Let me take your hand, Francis,” said Clara. “Did you know I was a
seer? No! then listen.”

The laughter-loving girl took his hand, and putting on an _awful_ look,
she began—“Where grow the tall elms greenest, lies hid a vine-covered
cottage. Ha! you start, brother mine. I am right! That we will take for
granted. We will also take for granted that the said cottage is a
paragon of a cottage. Within—ah! there’s the charm. What! blushing,
Frank! Am I not a good diviner? Let me see—oh! she is beautiful! A Peri
come down on earth to live. A fairy—for naught but a fairy—no mortal
maiden could be fashioned fair enough to suit my _perfectionist_ of a
brother. Here is a line I do not quite comprehend. Ah! I see—there is
some difficulty: it only proves what the great bard said—‘The course of
true love’—you know the rest. The fairy maiden does not look kindly on
you. See! these lines cross one another: but the cross line is short;
after that all is clear. Her eyes will yet look love on you. Her home
will yet be in your heart. So, courage, brother!”

All were now eager to hear their fortunes, but the capricious girl
turned to the piano; before she had half finished her song she abruptly
asked,—

“Mamma, what is love?”

“Love, my dear?—why it is a principle inherent within us. The feeling I
have for you is love. God is love, and all his creation is ruled by the
laws of love.”

“Cousin Edward, what is _your_ definition of love?”

“Love,” said Edward, looking into the depths of her laughing blue eyes,
“love is love.”

“Good!—that will do for you. So now, Frank, it is your turn
Francis—brother.”

“What, Clara?”

“Where are you wandering?”

“To the vine-covered cottage you were telling me of.”

“Well, come back from there, and tell me what love is.”

“Love? Love is the devil! An angel of light—madness—gladness! Gladness
in the presence of the loved one, and—”

“And madness away from the dear one. Is that it? Yes, you _are_ in
love.”

Miss Linwood was appealed to for _her_ opinion of what love was.

“Never having experienced the mysterious influence of the blind deity,”
said she, “I feel myself totally unprepared to give an opinion on the
all important subject.”

Miss Laura Linwood giggled and said nothing.

Mr. Ralph Linwood gave it as his belief that love was animal magnetism.
Much more he said by way of illustration; hardly worth repeating
however.

Kate and George agreed with Edward, viz., that _love was love_.

Another cousin, little Lilla, they called her, a sister of Kate’s—a
child—a very pretty one, too, said that love was the son of Venus, and
that he was named Cupid—for her Heathen Mythology said so; and that he
always kept a bow and arrow to shoot into the hearts of mortals.

The child was right.

One maintained that love was friendship continued, the allegory of a
metaphor.

“Love is like a dizziness, confound it, ’t wont let a fellow go about
his business,” said George.

And so the merry party kept rattling on;—nonsense, to be sure—but what
is this world good for without some nonsense?

The group at length became divided—the conversation less general.
Edward and Clara sat over on a lounge by the window, talking with each
other in a very animated strain. The rest cut up in small cliques were
equally full of life. Frank alone seemed sad. His buoyant spirits had
deserted him. He rose to go.

“What, off again, my brother?”

“Yes, I am going in search of that cottage you described. I am impatient
to see the lovely fairy it contains.”

“Then you never have seen her? Say not no,” said Clara, shaking the
fore-finger of her little hand at him.

Frank was off. He mounted his horse, and as though he were on his way to
his last ride.

“I have come to say, good-by,” said he, on entering the conservatory at
the cottage, where Agnes was tying up her flowers.

“What! are you going? Where?”

“To—to Lapland.”

“Lapland!”

“Yes! to see if I cannot freeze the burning weight at my heart.”

Agnes looked surprised. The truth half flashed upon her, and when she
saw how wretched Frank looked, a thousand little things he had done and
said that she thought nothing of at the time, came suddenly to her mind,
as though to corroborate her suspicions.

“No, it cannot be,” said she to herself, blushing at having even
_thought_ she was beloved by Frank. She warmly expressed her regrets for
the departure of her friend. And the little Nina—she hardly knew what
to make of it. She crept up to Francis, and climbing upon his knee, hid
her face in his bosom, to hide her own tears.

“Is good Frank going to leave his poor Nina? Naughty Frank.”

“Yes, pretty one,” said he, fondly passing his hand through her
clustering curls. “Give me one of these sunny ringlets, Nina; I will
keep it always.”

Quicker than thought the child sprang down, and ran to her mother.
“Mamma, where are your scissors? Frank wants one of my curls.”

The mother gave her the scissors. Nina, selecting the prettiest curl she
could find, off it came.

“Here,” said she, handing it to Francis. “Now give me one of your nice
curls, and I will keep it forever.”

Frank let her cut off the lock that pleased her best. The child actually
screamed with delight; and dancing round the room with true childish
glee, she held it up for her mother to admire, and said she would “show
it to papa as soon as he came home.”

Francis Beverly went. . . . .

Twelve or thirteen years after, a solitary equestrian was seen to enter
the tangled avenue leading to Beverly Park.

He was fine-looking, very. There was a calm, almost subdued look about
him; yet the great blue eyes that looked out upon the world through
their long, dark lashes, told of passions deep and strong. The brow
above them was clear, open, and broad. A mass of chestnut curls
clustered around his brow, glancing out from under the thick folds of
his traveling cap. Such was the master of Beverly Park. All around the
Hall looked overgrown and neglected, as though the place had long stood
sadly in want of a master. . . . . .

“Do you know, Mr. Bev—”

“Call me Frank. You always did when you were a child, sweet Nina.”

“Frank,” repeated the soft voice of Nina.

“What were you going to say?”

“Oh, I have forgotten.”

“Nina, when I went away you begged some of my hair—have you it yet?”

“Why, Mr. Bev—, Frank, I mean, how _do_ you think I could keep a little
lock of hair thirteen long years?”

“Then you have lost it, or thrown it by; yet I remember, you _said_ you
would keep it forever.”

“I did not say I had thrown it away, or lost it, for I have done
neither. I had it imprisoned right away in this little locket, and have
worn it around my neck ever since, for fear of breaking the promise I
made.”

“That was the only reason of your wearing it?”

“Certainly, if I except a strong childish liking I had for ‘Frank.’”

“Your hair has grown darker, dear Nina. See! I have worn this bright
tress upon my heart ever since you gave it to me. I would, dearest Nina,
its owner would make _her_ home there. Nina—”

Just then the door opened and Agnes entered. Thirteen years had trodden
lightly over her head. She was scarce altered from the bright Agnes of
his first love-dream.

The inmates of the cottage had warmly welcomed Frank, after his long
absence. Since his return he had gradually gone more and more often to
the cottage, until he had almost become its inmate. The charm _now_ was
not Agnes, or rather it _was_ Agnes—a _second_ Agnes. Francis could
hardly persuade himself that the gentle, playful Nina, was not the Agnes
he once loved so madly. The wild, unsettled years that had passed; the
thirteen restless years of wandering through foreign lands in search of
happiness—of oblivion, seemed like a troubled dream to him. He lived
again in the present—in the sunshine of Nina’s warm, brown eyes. He was
happy in the present, with the sunny-hearted Nina beside him, playing
for him, singing for him, laughing for him. Frank told her he was going
to have her laugh set to music by the fairies, and have it sung by the
brightest birds of Eden.

The afternoon was warm and dreamy; a soft haze shrouded the air; the
softest breeze floated through the thick summer foliage.

Nina was mounted upon her coal-black Zephyr—a most _zepherial_ little
piece of horse-flesh, fleet as the wind. Frank was by her side.

“Which way to-day, dear Nina?”

“Which ever way Zephyr takes.”

Zephyr took the road to Beverly Park. The Hall had been refitted, and
looked itself again. The two rode through the park and grounds, viewing
the improvements that had been made, alighting at length before the
great door of the Hall.

“Stay, sweet Nina; there is one spot I wish to show you, you never have
seen it. It was not completed till yesterday.”

Frank led her through the garden to the most poetic little arbor ever
Eastern dame sighed in. Recal to your mind the most beautiful poetry you
ever read or dreamed of—your beau-ideal of poetry—whether it be
Byron’s, Shelley’s, Shakspeare’s, your own, or Mother Goose’s, and the
little poem of an arbor stands in its beauty before you.

Nina’s delight was rapturous. After exhausting all the known adjectives
in its praise, Nina sat quietly down within it, Francis by her side, and
talked with him about music, and flowers, and poetry, and all the bright
things in nature. She was playful and enthusiastic by turns. Every thing
by fits, and nothing long.

Frank took her hand at last—her little, soft, warm hand—and calling up
a serious, tender look—

“Nina,” said he, “I have traveled the world over, ay, more than once; I
have seen many, very many beautiful beings; but never one like thee,
sweet Nina. I will not _say_ thou art the most beautiful, but I _will_
say, thou art the most necessary to my existence, to my whole nature, of
all earth contains. I love thee. _Dearest_ Nina, may I call thee mine?”

“Whew! The girl and her fleet Zephyr were gone.”

“Gone!—well—”

“Well what, good Sprite?”

“Is that all?”

“Yes, my very good Sprite. What then?”

“I may be allowed to criticise?”

“Certainly.”

“I do not like your story. It is not—”

“No!”

“It is neither well expressed, nor well arranged, nor at all
satisfactory. The _sequel_! Were they, Frank and Nina, married? What’s a
story without a wedding?”

“The sequel thou shalt have; the wedding too. They _were_ married, just
three weeks after the arbor scene—Frank and Nina.”

“What became of Edward and Clara?”

“They became one, shortly after Frank started on his thirteen years
pilgrimage.”

“Frank’s mother?”

“Went to live with Edward and Clara. She died at a happy old age,
blessed with good children, and good grand—”

“Kate and George?”

“Were united in the holy bands of wedlock.”

“The Miss Linwoods?”

“_Miss_ Linwood, never having made up her mind on ‘the all-important
subject,’ remained in _statu quo_. Miss Laura Linwood eloped with a
younger son’s younger son.”

“Was Edward a Beverly?”

“Yes.”

“What was Nina’s name? Nina _what_, before she became a Beverly?”

“Nina—I have forgotten what.”

“Strange.”

“Any thing more, good Sprite?”

“Much more; you seem to forget the great importance of a moral.”

“Not in the least, good natured Sprite. The moral is, doing right is its
own exceeding great reward.”

                 *        *        *        *        *

[Illustration]

                 *        *        *        *        *



                        THE ISLETS OF THE GULF;


                             OR, ROSE BUDD.


           Ay, now I am in Arden; the more fool
           I; when I was at home I was in a better place; but
           Travelers must be content.    As You Like It.

BY THE AUTHOR OF “PILOT,” “RED ROVER,” “TWO ADMIRALS,” “WING-AND-WING,”
                       “MILES WALLINGFORD,” &c.


    [Entered, according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1846, by
    J. Fenimore Cooper, in the Clerk’s Office of the District Court
    of the United States, for the Northern District of New York.]

                      (_Continued from page 228._)


                               PART VII.

             Thou art the same, eternal sea!
             The earth has many shapes and forms,
             Of hill and valley, flower and tree;
             Fields that the fervid noontide warms,
             Or winter’s rugged grasp deforms,
             Or bright with autumn’s golden store;
             Thou coverest up thy face with storms,
             Or smilest serene,—but still thy roar
           And dashing foam go up to vex the sea-beat shore.
                                                       Lunt.

We shall now advance the time eight-and-forty hours. The baffling winds
and calms that succeeded the tornado had gone, and the trades blew in
their stead. Both vessels had disappeared, the brig leading, doubling
the western extremity of the reef, and going off before both wind and
current, with flowing sheets, fully three hours before the sloop-of-war
could beat up against the latter, to a point that enabled her to do the
same thing. By that time, the Swash was five-and-twenty miles to the
eastward, and consequently but just discernible in her loftiest sails,
from the ship’s royal yards. Still, the latter continued the chase; and
that evening both vessels were beating down along the southern margin of
the Florida Reef, against the trades, but favored by a three or a four
knot current, the brig out of sight to windward. Our narrative leads us
to lose sight of both these vessels, for a time, in order to return to
the Islets of the Gulf. Eight-and-forty hours had made some changes in
and around the haven of the Dry Tortugas. The tent still stood, and a
small fire that was boiling its pot and its kettle, at no great distance
from it, proved that the tent was still inhabited. The schooner also
rode at her anchors, very much as she had been abandoned by Spike. The
bag of doubloons, however, had been found, and there it lay, tied but
totally unguarded, in the canvas verandah of Rose Budd’s habitation.
Jack Tier passed and repassed it with apparent indifference, as he went
to and fro, between his pantry and kitchen, busy as a bee in preparing
his noontide meal for the day. This man seemed to have the islet all to
himself, however, no one else being visible on any part of it. He sang
his song, in a cracked, _contre alto_ voice, and appeared to be happy in
his solitude. Occasionally he talked to himself aloud, most probably
because he had no one else to speak to. We shall record one of his
recitatives, which came in between the strains of a very inharmonious
air, the words of which treated of the seas, while the steward’s
assistant was stirring an exceedingly savory mess that he had concocted
of the ingredients to be found in the united larders of the Swash and
the Mexican schooner.

“Stephen Spike is a capital willian!” exclaimed Jack, smelling at a
ladle filled with his soup—“a capital willian, I call him. To think, at
his time of life, of such a handsome and pleasant young thing as this
Rose Budd; and then to try to get her by underhand means, and by making
a fool of her silly old aunt. It’s wonderful what fools some old aunts
be! Quite wonderful! If I was as great a simpleton as this Mrs. Budd,
I’d never cross my threshold. Yes, Stephen Spike is a prodigious
willian, as his best friend must own! Well, I gave him a thump on the
head that he’ll not forget this v’y’ge. To think of carryin’ off that
pretty Rose Budd in his very arms, in so indecent a manner! Yet, the man
has his good p’ints, if a body could only forget his bad ones. He’s a
first-rate seaman. How he worked the brig till he doubled the reef,
a’ter she got into open water; and how he made her walk off afore the
wind, with stun’sails alow and aloft, as soon as ever he could make ’em
draw! My life for it, he’ll tire the legs of Uncle Sam’s man, afore he
can fetch up with him. For running away, when hard chased, Stephen Spike
hasn’t his equal on ’arth. But, he’s a great willian—a prodigious
willian! I cannot say I actually wish him hanged; but I would rather
have him hanged than see him get pretty Rose in his power. What has he
to do with girls of nineteen? If the rascal is one year old he’s
fifty-six. I hope the sloop-of-war will find her match, and I think she
will. The Molly’s a great traveler, and not to be outdone easily.
’Twould be a thousand pities so lovely a craft should be cut off in the
flower of her days, as it might be, and I _do_ hope she’ll lead that
bloody sloop on some sunken rock.”

“Well, there’s the other bag of doubloons. It seems Stephen could not
get it. That’s odd, too, for he’s great at grabbin’ gold. The man bears
his age well; but he’s a willian! I wonder whether he or Mulford made
that half-board in the narrow channel. It was well done, and Stephen is
a perfect sailor; but he says Mulford is the same. Nice young man, that
Mulford; just fit for Rose, and Rose for him. Pity to part them. Can
find no great fault with him, except that he has too much conscience.
There’s such a thing as having too much, as well as too little
conscience. Mulford has too much, and Spike has too little. For him to
think of carryin’ off a gal of nineteen! I say he’s fifty-six, if he’s a
day. How fond he used to be of this very soup. If I’ve seen him eat a
quart of it, I’ve seen him eat a puncheon full of it, in my time. What
an appetite the man has when he’s had a hard day’s duty on’t! There’s a
great deal to admire, and a great deal to like in Stephen Spike, but
he’s a reg’lar willian. I dare say he fancies himself a smart, jaunty
youth ag’in, as I can remember him; a lad of twenty, which was about his
years when I first saw him, by the sign that I was very little turned of
fifteen myself. Spike _was_ comely then, though I acknowledge he’s a
willian. I can see him now, with his deep blue roundabout, his
bell-mouthed trowsers, both of fine cloth—too fine for such a
willian—but fine it was, and much did it become him.”

Here Jack made a long pause, during which, though he may have thought
much, he said nothing. Nevertheless, he wasn’t idle the while. On the
contrary, he passed no less than three several times from the fire to
the tent, and returned. Each time, in going and coming, he looked
intently at the bag of doubloons, though he did not stop at it or touch
it. Some associations connected with Spike’s fruitless attempts to
obtain it must have formed its principal interest with this singular
being, as he muttered his captain’s name each time in passing, though he
said no more audibly. The concerns of the dinner carried him back and
forth; and in his last visit to the tent, he began to set a small
table—one that had been brought for the convenience of Mrs. Budd and
her niece, from the brig, and which of course still remained on the
islet. It was while thus occupied, that Jack Tier recommenced his
soliloquy.

“I hope that money may do some worthy fellow good yet. It’s Mexican
gold, and that’s inemy’s gold, and might be condemned by law, I do
suppose. Stephen had a hankerin’ a’ter it, but he did not get it. It
come easy enough to the next man that tried. That Spike’s a willian, and
the gold was too good for him. He has no conscience at all to think of a
gal of nineteen! And one fit for his betters, in the bargain. The time
_has_ been when Stephen Spike might have pretended to Rose Budd’s equal.
That much I’ll ever maintain, but that time’s gone; and, what is more,
it will never come again. I should like Mulford better if he had a
little less conscience. Conscience may do for Uncle Sam’s ships, but it
is sometimes in the way aboard a trading craft. What can a fellow do
with a conscience when dollars is to be smuggled off, or tobacco
smuggled ashore? I do suppose I’ve about as much conscience as it is
useful to have, and I’ve got ashore in my day twenty thousand dollars’
worth of stuff, of one sort or another, if I’ve got ashore the valie of
ten dollars. But Spike carries on business on too large a scale, and
many’s the time I’ve told him so. I could have forgiven him any thing
but this attempt on Rose Budd; and he’s altogether too old for that, to
say nothing of other people’s rights. He’s an up-and-down willian, and a
body can make no more, nor any less of him. That soup must be near done,
and I’ll hoist the signal for grub.”

This signal was a blue-peter, of which one had been brought ashore to
signal the brig; and with which Jack now signaled the schooner. If the
reader will turn his eyes toward the last named vessel, he will find the
guests whom Tier expected to surround his table. Rose, her aunt, and
Biddy were all seated, under an awning made by a sail, on the deck of
the schooner, which now floated so buoyantly as to show that she had
been materially lightened since last seen. Such indeed was the fact, and
he who had been the instrument of producing this change, appeared on
deck in the person of Mulford, as soon as he was told that the
blue-peter of Jack Tier was flying.

The boat of the light-house, that in which Spike had landed in quest of
Rose, was lying alongside of the schooner, and sufficiently explained
the manner in which the mate had left the brig. This boat, in fact, had
been fastened astern, in the hurry of getting from under the
sloop-of-war’s fire, and Mulford had taken the opportunity of the
consternation and frantic efforts produced by the explosion of the last
shell thrown, to descend from his station on the coach-house into this
boat, to cut the painter, and to let the Swash glide away from him. This
the vessel had done with great rapidity, leaving him unseen under the
cover of her stern. As soon as in the boat, the mate had seized an oar,
and sculled to an islet that was within fifty yards, concealing the boat
behind a low hummock that formed a tiny bay. All this was done so
rapidly, that united to the confusion on board the Swash, no one
discovered the mate or the boat. Had he been seen, however, it is very
little probable that Spike would have lost a moment of time, in the
attempt to recover either. But he was not seen, and it was the general
opinion on board the Swash, for quite an hour, that her handsome mate
had been knocked overboard and killed, by a fragment of the shell that
had seemed to explode almost in the ears of her people. When the reef
was doubled, however, and Spike made his preparations for meeting the
rough water, he hove to, and ordered his own yawl which was also towing
astern, to be hauled up alongside, in order to be hoisted in. Then,
indeed, some glimmerings of the truth were shed on the crew, who missed
the lighthouse boat. Though many contended that its painter must also
have been cut by a fragment of the shell, and that the mate had died
loyal to roguery and treason. Mulford was much liked by the crew, and he
was highly valued by Spike, on account of his seamanship and integrity,
this latter being a quality that is just as necessary for one of the
captain’s character to meet with in those he trusts as to any other man.
But Spike thought differently of the cause of Mulford’s disappearance,
from his crew. He ascribed it altogether to love for Rose, when, in
truth, it ought in justice to have been quite as much imputed to a
determination to sail no longer with a man who was clearly guilty of
treason. Of smuggling, Mulford had long suspected Spike, though he had
no direct proof of the fact; but now he could not doubt that he was not
only engaged in supplying the enemy with the munitions of war, but was
actively bargaining to sell his brig for a hostile cruiser, and possibly
to transfer himself and crew along with her.

It is scarcely necessary to speak of the welcome Mulford received when
he reached the islet of the tent. He and Rose had a long private
conference, the result of which was to let the handsome mate into the
secret of his pretty companion’s true feelings toward himself. She had
received him with tears, and a betrayal of emotion that gave him every
encouragement, and now she did not deny her preference. In that
interview the young people plighted to each other their troth. Rose
never doubted of obtaining her aunt’s consent in due time, all her
prejudices being in favor of the sea and sailors, and should she not,
she would soon be her own mistress, and at liberty to dispose of herself
and her pretty little fortune as she might choose. But a cypher as she
was, in all questions of real moment, Mrs. Budd was not a person likely
to throw any real obstacle in the way of the young people’s wishes; the
true grounds of whose present apprehensions were all to be referred to
Spike, his intentions, and his well known perseverance. Mulford was
convinced that the brig would be back in quest of the remaining
doubloons, as soon as she could get clear of the sloop-of-war, though he
was not altogether without a hope that the latter, when she found it
impossible to overhaul her chase; might also return in order to
ascertain what discoveries could be made in and about the schooner. The
explosion of the powder, on the islet, must have put the man-of-war’s
men in possession of the secret of the real quality of the flour that
had composed her cargo, and it doubtless had awakened all their distrust
on the subject of the Swash’s real business in the Gulf. Under all the
circumstances, therefore, it did appear quite as probable that one of
the parties should reappear at the scene of their recent interview as
the other.

Bearing all these things in mind, Mulford had lost no time in completing
his own arrangements. He felt that he had some atonement to make to the
country, for the part he had seemingly taken in the late events, and it
occurred to him, could he put the schooner in a state to be moved, then
place her in the hands of the authorities, his own peace would be made,
and his character cleared. Rose no sooner understood his plans and
motives, than she entered into them with all the ardor and self-devotion
of her sex; for the single hour of confidential and frank communication
which had just passed, doubled the interest she felt in Mulford and in
all that belonged to him. Jack Tier was useful on board a vessel, though
his want of stature and force, rendered him less so than was common with
sea-faring men. His proper sphere certainly had been the cabins, where
his usefulness was beyond all cavil; but he was now very serviceable to
Mulford on the deck of the schooner. The first two days, Mrs. Budd had
been left on the islet, to look to the concerns of the kitchen, while
Mulford, accompanied by Rose, Biddy and Jack Tier had gone off to the
schooner, and set her pumps in motion again. It was little that Rose
could do, or indeed attempt to do, at this toil, but the pumps being
small and easily worked, Biddy and Jack were of great service. By the
end of the second day the pumps sucked; the cargo that remained in the
schooner, as well as the form of her bottom, contributing greatly to
lessen the quantity of the water that was to be got out of her.

Then it was that the doubloons fell into Mulford’s hands, along with
every thing else that remained below decks. It was perhaps fortunate
that the vessel was thoroughly purified by her immersion, and the
articles that were brought on deck to be dried were found in a condition
to give no great offence to those who removed them. By leaving the
hatches off, and the cabin doors open, the warm winds of the trades
effectually dried the interior of the schooner in the course of a single
night, and when Mulford repaired on board of her, on the morning of the
third day, he found her in a condition to be fitted for his purposes. On
this occasion Mrs. Budd had expressed a wish to go off to look at her
future accommodations, and Jack was left on the islet to cook the
dinner, which will explain the actual state of things as described in
the opening of this chapter.

As those who toil usually have a relish for their food, the appearance
of the blue-peter was far from being unwelcome to those on board of the
schooner. They got into the boat, and were sculled ashore by Mulford,
who, seaman-like, used only one hand in performing this service. In a
very few minutes they were all seated at the little table, which was
brought out into the tent-verandah for the enjoyment of the breeze.

“So far, well,” said Mulford, after his appetite was mainly appeased;
Rose picking crumbs, and affecting to eat merely to have the air of
keeping him company; one of the minor proofs of the little attentions
that spring from the affections. “So far, well. The sails are bent, and
though they might be newer and better, they can be made to answer, it
was fortunate to find any thing like a second suit on board a Mexican
craft of that size at all. As it is, we have foresail, mainsail and jib,
and with that canvas I think we might beat the schooner down to Key West
in the course of a day and a night. If I dared to venture outside of the
reef, it might be done sooner even, for they tell me there is a
four-knot current sometimes in that track; but I do not like to venture
outside, so short-handed. The current inside must serve our turn, and we
shall get smooth water by keeping under the lee of the rocks. I only
hope we shall not get into an eddy as we go further from the end of the
reef, and into the bight of the coast.”

“Is there danger of that?” demanded Rose, whose quick intellect had
taught her many of these things, since her acquaintance with vessels.

“There may be, looking at the formation of the reef and islands, though
I know nothing of the fact by actual observation. This is my first visit
in this quarter.”

“Eddies are serious matters,” put in Mrs. Budd, “and my poor husband
could not abide them. Tides are good things; but eddies are very
disagreeable.”

“Well, aunty, I should think eddies might sometimes be as welcome as
tides. It must depend, however, very much on the way one wishes to go.”

“Rose, you surprise me! All that you have read, and all that you have
heard, must have shown you the difference. Do they not say ‘a man is
floating with the tide,’ when things are prosperous with him—and don’t
ships drop down with the tide, and beat the wind with the tide? And
don’t vessels sometimes ‘tide it up to town,’ as it is called, and isn’t
it thought an advantage to have the tide with you?”

“All very true, aunty, but I do not see how that makes eddies any the
worse.”

“Because eddies are the opposites of tides, child. When the tide goes
one way, the eddy goes another—isn’t it so, Harry Mulford? You never
heard of one’s floating in an eddy.”

“That’s what we mean by an eddy, Mrs. Budd,” answered the handsome mate,
delighted to hear Rose’s aunt call him by an appellation so kind and
familiar,—a thing she had never done previously to the intercourse
which had been the consequence of their present situation. “Though I
agree with Rose in thinking an eddy may be a good or a bad thing, and
very much like a tide, as one wishes to steer.”

“You amaze me, both of you! Tides are always spoken of favorably, but
eddies never. If a ship gets ashore, the tide can float her off; _that_
I’ve heard a thousand times. Then, what do the newspapers say of
President ——, and Governor ——, and Congressman ——?[3] Why, that
they all ‘float in the tide of public opinion,’ and that must mean
something particularly good, as they are always in office. No, no,
Harry; I’ll acknowledge that you do know something about ships; a good
deal, considering how young you are; but you have something to learn
about eddies. Never trust one as long as you live.”

Mulford was silent, and Rose took the occasion to change the discourse.

“I hope we shall soon be able to quit this place,” she said; “for I
confess to some dread of Capt. Spike’s return.”

“Capt. Stephen Spike has greatly disappointed me,” observed the aunt,
gravely. “I do not know that I was ever before deceived in judging a
person. I could have sworn he was an honest, frank, well-meaning
sailor—a character, of all others, that I love; but it has turned out
otherwise.”

“He’s a willian!” muttered Jack Tier.

Mulford smiled; at which speech we must leave to conjecture; but he
answered Rose, as he ever did, promptly and with pleasure.

“The schooner is ready, and this must be our last meal ashore,” he said.
“Our outfit will be no great matter; but if it will carry us down to Key
West, I shall ask no more of it. As for the return of the Swash, I look
upon it as certain. She could easily get clear of the sloop-of-war, with
the start she had, and Spike is a man that never yet abandoned a
doubloon, when he knew where one was to be found.”

“Stephen Spike is like all his fellow-creatures,” put in Jack Tier,
pointedly. “He has his faults, and he has his virtues.”

“Virtue is a term I should never think of applying to such a man,”
returned Mulford, a little surprised at the fellow’s earnestness. “The
word is a big one, and belongs to quite another class of persons.” Jack
muttered a few syllables that were unintelligible, when again the
conversation changed.

Rose now inquired of Mulford as to their prospects of getting to Key
West. He told her that the distance was about sixty miles; their route
lying along the north or inner side of the Florida Reef. The whole
distance was to be made against the trade wind, which was then blowing
about an eight-knot breeze, though, bating eddies, they might expect to
be favored with the current, which was less strong inside than outside
of the reef. As for handling the schooner, Mulford saw no great
difficulty in that. She was not large, and was both lightly sparred and
lightly rigged. All her top-hamper had been taken down by Spike, and
nothing remained but the plainest and most readily-managed gear. A
fore-and-aft vessel, sailing close by the wind, is not difficult to
steer; will almost steer herself, indeed, in smooth water. Jack Tier
could take his trick at the helm, in any weather, even in running before
the wind, the time when it is most difficult to guide a craft, and Rose
might be made to understand the use of the tiller, and taught to govern
the motions of a vessel so small and so simply rigged, when on a wind
and in smooth water. On the score of managing the schooner, therefore,
Mulford thought there would be little cause for apprehension. Should the
weather continue settled, he had little doubt of safely landing the
whole party at Key West, in the course of the next four-and-twenty
hours. Short sail he should be obliged to carry, as well on account of
the greater facility of managing it, as on account of the circumstance
that the schooner was now in light ballast trim, and would not bear much
canvas. He thought that the sooner they left the islets the better, as
it could not be long ere the brig would be seen hovering around the
spot. All these matters were discussed as the party still sat at table;
and when they left it, which was a few minutes later, it was to remove
the effects they intended to carry away to the boat. This was soon done,
both Jack Tier and Biddy proving very serviceable, while Rose tripped
backward and forward, with a step elastic as a gazelle’s, carrying light
burdens. In half an hour the boat was ready. “Here lies the bag of
doubloons still,” said Mulford, smiling. “Is it to be left, or shall we
give it up to the admiralty court at Key West, and put in a claim for
salvage?”

“Better leave it for Spike,” said Jack, unexpectedly. “Should he come
back, and find the doubloons, he may be satisfied, and not look for the
schooner. On the other hand, when the vessel is missing, he will think
that the money is in her. Better leave it for old Stephen.”

“I do not agree with you, Tier,” said Rose, though she looked as
amicably at the steward’s assistant, as she thus opposed his opinion, as
if anxious to persuade, rather than coerce. “I do not quite agree with
you. This money belongs to the Spanish merchant; and, as we take away
with us his vessel, to give it up to the authorities at Key West, I do
not think we have a right to put his gold on the shore and abandon it.”

This disposed of the question. Mulford took the bag, and carried it to
the boat, without waiting to ascertain if Jack had any objection; while
the whole party followed. In a few minutes every body and every thing in
the boat were transferred to the deck of the schooner. As for the tent,
the old sails of which it was made, the furniture it contained, and such
articles of provisions as were not wanted, they were left on the islet,
without regret. The schooner had several casks of fresh water, which
were found in her hold, and she had also a cask or two of salted meats,
besides several articles of food more delicate, that had been provided
by Señor Montefalderon for his own use, and which had not been damaged
by the water. A keg of Boston crackers were among these eatables, quite
half of which were still in a state to be eaten. They were Biddy’s
delight; and it was seldom that she could be seen when not nibbling at
one of them. The bread of the crew was hopelessly damaged. But Jack had
made an ample provision of bread, when sent ashore, and there was still
a hundred barrels of the flour in the schooner’s hold. One of these had
been hoisted on deck by Mulford, and opened. The injured flour was
easily removed, leaving a considerable quantity fit for the uses of the
kitchen. As for the keg of gunpowder, it was incontinently committed to
the deep.

Thus provided for, Mulford decided that the time had arrived when he
ought to quit his anchorage. He had been employed most of that morning
in getting the schooner’s anchor, a work of great toil to him, though
everybody had assisted. He had succeeded, and the vessel now rode by a
kedge that he could easily weigh by means of a deck tackle. It remained
now, therefore, to lift this kedge and to stand out of the bay of the
islets. No sooner was the boat secured astern, and its freight disposed
of than the mate began to make sail. In order to hoist the mainsail well
up, he was obliged to carry the halyards to the windlass. Thus aided, he
succeeded without much difficulty. He and Jack Tier and Biddy got the
jib hoisted by hand; and as for the foresail, that would almost set
itself. Of course, it was not touched until the kedge was aweigh.
Mulford found little difficulty in lifting the last, and he soon had the
satisfaction of finding his craft clear of the ground. As Jack Tier was
every way competent to taking charge of the forecastle, Mulford now
sprang aft, and took his own station at the helm; Rose acting as his
pretty assistant on the quarter-deck.

There is little mystery in getting a fore-and-aft vessel under way. Her
sails fill almost as a matter of course, and motion follows as a
necessary law. Thus did it prove with the Mexican schooner, which turned
out to be a fast sailing and an easily worked craft. She was, indeed, an
American bottom, as it is termed, having been originally built for the
Chesapeake; and, though not absolutely what is understood by a Baltimore
clipper, so nearly of that mould and nature as to possess some of the
more essential qualities. As usually happens, however, when a foreigner
gets hold of an American schooner, the Mexicans had shorted her masts
and lessened her canvas. This circumstance was rather an advantage to
Mulford, who would probably have had more to attend to than he wished
under the original rig of the craft.

Everybody, even to the fastidious Mrs. Budd, was delighted with the easy
and swift movement of the schooner. Mulford, now he had got her under
canvas, handled her without any difficulty, letting her stand toward the
channel through which he intended to pass, with her sheets just taken
in, though compelled to keep a little off, in order to enter between the
islets. No difficulty occurred, however, and in less than ten minutes
the vessel was clear of the channels, and in open water. The sheets were
now flattened in, and the schooner brought close by the wind. A trial of
the vessel on this mode of sailing was no sooner made, than Mulford was
induced to regret he had taken so many precautions against any
increasing power of the wind. To meet emergencies, and under the notion
he should have his craft more under command, the young man had reefed
his mainsail, and taken the bonnets off of the foresail and jib. As the
schooner stood up better than he had anticipated, the mate felt as all
seamen are so apt to feel, when they see that their vessels might be
made to perform more than is actually got out of them. As the breeze was
fresh, however, he determined not to let out the reef; and the labor of
lacing on the bonnets again was too great to be thought of just at that
moment.

We all find relief on getting in motion, when pressed by circumstances.
Mulford had been in great apprehension of the re-appearance of the Swash
all that day; for it was about the time when Spike would be apt to
return, in the event of his escaping from the sloop-of-war, and he
dreaded Rose’s again falling into the hands of a man so desperate. Nor
is it imputing more than a very natural care to the young man, to say,
that he had some misgivings concerning himself. Spike, by this time,
must be convinced that his business in the Gulf was known; and one who
had openly thrown off his service, as his mate had done, would
unquestionably be regarded as a traitor to _his_ interests, whatever
might be the relation in which he would stand to the laws of the
country. It was probable such an alleged offender would not be allowed
to appear before the tribunals of the land, to justify himself and to
accuse the truly guilty, if it were in the power of the last to prevent
it. Great, therefore, was the satisfaction of our handsome young mate,
when he found himself again fairly in motion, with a craft under him,
that glided ahead in a way to prove that she might give even the Swash
some trouble to catch her, in the event of a trial of speed.

Everybody entered into the feelings of Mulford, as the schooner passed
gallantly out from between the islets, and entered the open water.
Fathom by fathom did her wake rapidly increase, until it could no longer
be traced back as far as the sandy beaches that had just been left. In a
quarter of an hour more, the vessel had drawn so far from the land, that
some of the smaller and lowest of the islets were getting to be
indistinct. At that instant everybody had come aft, the females taking
their seats on the trunk which, in this vessel as in the Swash herself,
gave space and height to the cabin.

“Well,” exclaimed Mrs. Budd, who found the freshness of the sea air
invigorating, as well as their speed exciting, “this is what I call
maritime, Rosy dear. This is what is meant by the Maritime States, about
which we read so much, and which are commonly thought to be so
important. We are now in a Maritime State, and I feel perfectly happy,
after all our dangers and adventures!”

“Yes, aunty, and I am delighted that you _are_ happy,” answered Rose,
with frank affection. “We are now rid of that infamous Spike, and may
hope never to see his face more.”

“Stephen Spike has his good p’ints as well as another,” said Jack Tier,
abruptly.

“I know that he is an old shipmate of yours, Tier, and that you cannot
forget how he once stood connected with you, and am sorry I have said so
much against him,” answered Rose, expressing her concern even more by
her looks and tones, than by her words.

Jack was mollified by this, and he let his feeling be seen, though he
said no more than to mutter, “He’s a willian!” words that had frequently
issued from his lips within the last day or two.

“Stephen Spike is a capital seaman, and that is something in any man,”
observed the relict of Capt. Budd. “He learned his trade from one who
was every way qualified to teach him, and it’s no wonder he should be
expert. Do you expect, Mr. Mulford, to beat the wind the whole distance
to Key West?”

It was not possible for any one to look more grave than the mate did
habitually, while the widow was floundering through her sea-terms. Rose
had taught him that respect for her aunt was to be one of the conditions
of her own regard, though Rose had never opened her lips to him on the
subject.

“Yes, ma’am,” answered the mate, respectfully, “we are in the trades,
and shall have to turn to windward, every inch of the way to Key West.”

“Of what lock is this place the key, Rosy?” asked the aunt, innocently
enough. “I know that forts and towns are sometimes called keys, but they
always have locks of some sort or other. Now, Gibraltar is the key of
the Mediterranean, as your uncle has told me fifty times; and I have
been there, and can understand why it should be,—but I do not know of
what lock this West is the key.”

“It is not that sort of key which is meant, aunty, at all—but quite a
different thing. The key meant is an island.”

“And why should any one be so silly as to call an island a key?”

“The place where vessels unload is sometimes called a key,” answered
Mulford;—“the French calling it a _quai_, and the Dutch kaye. I suppose
our English word is derived from these. Now, a low, sandy island,
looking somewhat like keys, or wharves, seamen have given them this
name. Key West is merely a low island.”

“Then there is no lock to it, or anything to be unfastened,” said the
widow, in her most simple manner.

“It may turn out to be the key to the Gulf of Mexico, one of these days,
ma’am. Uncle Sam is surveying the reef, and intends to do something
here, I believe. When Uncle Sam is really in earnest he is capable of
performing great things.”

Mrs. Budd was satisfied with this explanation, though she told Biddy
that evening, that “locks and keys go together, and that the person who
christened the island to which they were going, must have been very weak
in his upper story.” But these reflections on the intellects of her
follow-creatures, were by no means uncommon with the worthy relict; and
we cannot say that her remarks made any particular impression on her
Irish maid.

In the meantime, the Mexican schooner behaved quite to Mulford’s
satisfaction. He thought her a little tender in the squalls, of which
they had several that afternoon, but he remarked to Rose, who expressed
her uneasiness at the manner in which the vessel lay over in one of
them, that “she comes down quite easy to her bearings, but it is hard
forcing her beyond them. The vessel needs more cargo to ballast her,
though, on the whole, I find her as stiff as one could expect. I am now
glad that I reefed, and reduced the head sails, though I was sorry at
having done so when we first came out. At this rate of sailing, we ought
to be up with Key West by morning.”

But that rate of sailing did not continue. Toward evening, the breeze
lessened almost to a calm again, the late tornado appearing to have
quite deranged the ordinary stability of the trades. When the sun set,
and it went down into the broad waters of the Gulf a flood of flame,
there was barely a two-knot breeze, and Mulford had no longer any
anxiety on the subject of keeping his vessel on her legs. His
solicitude, now, was confined to the probability of falling in with the
Swash. As yet, nothing was visible, either in the shape of land or in
that of a sail. Between the islets of the Dry Tortugas and the next
nearest visible keys, there is a space of open water, of some forty
miles in width. The reef extends across it, of course; but nowhere does
the rock protrude itself above the surface of the sea. The depth of
water on this reef varies essentially. In some places, a ship of size
might pass on to it, if not across it; while in others a man could wade
for miles. There is one deep and safe channel—safe to those who are
acquainted with it—through the centre of this open space, and which is
sometimes used by vessels that wish to pass from one side to the other;
but it is ever better for those whose business does not call them in
that direction, to give the rocks a good berth, more especially in the
night.

Mulford had gleaned many of the leading facts connected with the
channels, and the navigation of those waters, from Spike and the older
seamen of the brig, during the time they had been lying at the Tortugas.
Such questions and answers are common enough on board ships, and, as
they are usually put and given with intelligence, one of our mate’s
general knowledge of his profession, was likely to carry away much
useful information. By conversations of this nature, and by consulting
the charts, which Spike did not affect to conceal after the name of his
port became known, the young man, in fact, had so far made himself
master of the subject, as to have tolerably accurate notions of the
courses, distances, and general peculiarities of the reef. When the sun
went down, he supposed himself to be about half way across the space of
open water, and some five-and-twenty miles dead to windward of his port
of departure. This was doing very well for the circumstances, and
Mulford believed himself and his companions clear of Spike, when, as
night drew its veil over the tranquil sea, nothing was in sight.

A very judicious arrangement was made for the watches on board the
Mexican schooner, on this important night. Mrs. Budd had a great fancy
to keep a watch, for once in her life, and, after the party had supped,
and the subject came up in the natural course of things, a dialogue like
this occurred:

“Harry must be fatigued,” said Rose, kindly, “and must want sleep. The
wind is so light, and the weather appears to be so settled, that I think
it would be better for him to ‘turn in,’ as he calls it,”—here Rose
laughed so prettily that the handsome mate wished she would repeat the
words—“better that he should ‘turn in’ now, and we can call him, should
there be need of his advice or assistance. I dare say Jack Tier and I
can take very good care of the schooner until daylight.”

Mrs. Budd thought it would be no more than proper for one of her
experience and years to rebuke this levity, as well as to enlighten the
ignorance her niece had betrayed.

“You should be cautious, my child, how you propose any thing to be done
on a ship’s board,” observed the aunt. “It requires great experience and
a suitable knowledge of rigging to give maritime advice. Now, as might
have been expected, considering your years, and the short time you have
been at sea, you have made several serious mistakes in what you have
proposed. In the first place, there should always be a mate on the deck,
as I have heard your dear departed uncle say, again and again; and how
can there be a mate on the deck if Mr. Mulford ‘turns in,’ as you
propose, seeing that he’s the only mate we have. Then you should never
laugh at any maritime expression, for each and all are, as a body might
say, solemnized by storms and dangers. That Harry is fatigued I think is
very probable; and he must set our watches, as they call it, when he can
make his arrangements for the night, and take his rest as is usual. Here
is my watch to begin with; and I’ll engage he does not find it two
minutes out of the way, though yours, Rosy dear, like most girl’s
time-pieces, is, I’ll venture to say, dreadfully wrong. Where is your
chronometer, Mr. Mulford? Let us see how this excellent watch of mine,
which was once my poor departed Mr. Budd’s, will agree with that piece
of yours, which I have heard you say is excellent.”

Here was a flight in science and nautical language that poor Mulford
could not have anticipated, even in the captain’s relict! That Mrs. Budd
should mistake “setting the watch” for “setting our watches,” was not so
very violent a blunder that one ought to be much astonished at it in
_her_; but that she should expect to find a chronometer that was
intended to keep the time of Greenwich agreeing with a watch that was
set for the time of New York, betrayed a degree of ignorance that the
handsome mate was afraid Rose would resent on him, when the mistake was
made to appear. As the widow held out her own watch for the comparison,
however, he could not refuse to produce his own. By Mrs. Budd’s watch it
was past seven o’clock, while by his own, or the Greenwich-set
chronometer, it was a little past twelve.

“How very wrong your watch is, Mr. Mulford,” cried the good lady,
“notwithstanding all you have said in its favor. It’s quite five hours
too fast, I do declare; and now, Rosy dear, you see the importance of
setting watches on a ship’s board, as is done every evening, my departed
husband has often told me.”

“Harry’s must be what he calls a dog-watch, aunty,” said Rose, laughing,
though she scarce knew at what.

“The watch goes, too,” added the widow, raising the chronometer to her
ear, “though it is so very wrong. Well, set it, Mr. Mulford; then we
will set Rose’s, which I’ll engage is half an hour out of the way,
though it can never be as wrong as yours.”

Mulford was a good deal embarrassed, but he gained courage by looking at
Rose, who appeared to him to be quite as much mystified as her aunt. For
once he hoped Rose was ignorant; for nothing would be so likely to
diminish the feeling produced by the exposure of the aunt’s mistake as
to include the niece in the same category.

“My watch is a chronometer, you will recollect, Mrs. Budd,” said the
young man.

“I know it; and they ought to keep the very best time—_that_ I’ve
always heard. My poor Mr. Budd had two, and they were as large as
compasses, and sold for hundreds after his lamented decease.”

“They were ship’s chronometers, but mine was made for the pocket. It is
true, chronometers are intended to keep the most accurate time, and
usually they do; this of mine, in particular, would not lose ten seconds
in a twelvemonth, did I not carry it on my person.”

“No, no, it does not seem to lose any, Harry; it only gains,” cried
Rose, laughing.

Mulford was now satisfied, notwithstanding all that had passed on a
previous occasion, that the laughing, bright-eyed, and quick-witted girl
at his elbow, knew no more of the uses of a chronometer than her
unusually dull and ignorant aunt; and he felt himself relieved from all
embarrassment at once. Though he dared not even seem to distrust Mrs.
Budd’s intellect or knowledge before Rose, he did not scruple to laugh
at Rose herself, to Rose. With _her_ there was no jealousy on the score
of capacity, her quickness being almost as obvious to all who approached
her as her beauty.

“Rose Budd, you do not understand the uses of a chronometer, I see,”
said the mate, firmly, “notwithstanding all I have told you concerning
them.”

“It is to keep time, Harry Mulford, is it not?”

“True, to keep time—but to keep the time of a particular meridian; you
know what meridian means I hope?”

Rose looked intently at her lover, and she looked singularly lovely, for
she blushed slightly, though her smile was as open and amicable as
ingenuousness and affection could make it.

“A meridian means a point over our heads—the spot where the sun is at
noon,” said Rose, doubtingly.

“Quite right; but it also means longitude, in one sense. If you draw a
line from one pole to the other, all the places it crosses are on the
same meridian. As the sun first appears in the east, it follows that he
rises sooner in places that are east, than in places that are further
west. Thus it is, that at Greenwich, in England, where there is an
observatory made for nautical purposes, the sun rises about five hours
sooner than it does here. All this difference is subject to rules, and
we know exactly how to measure it.”

“How can that be, Harry? You told me this but the other day, yet have I
forgotten it.”

“Quite easily. As the earth turns round in just twenty-four hours, and
its circumference is divided into three hundred and sixty equal parts,
called degrees, we have only to divide 360 by 24, to know how many of
these degrees are included in the difference produced by one hour of
time. There are just fifteen of them, as you will find by multiplying 24
by 15. It follows that the sun rises just one hour later, each fifteen
degrees of longitude, as you go west, or one hour earlier each fifteen
degrees of longitude as you go east. Having ascertained the difference
by the hour, it is easy enough to calculate for the minutes and
seconds.”

“Yes, yes,” said Rose, eagerly, “I see all that—go on.”

“Now a chronometer is nothing but a watch, made with great care, so as
not to lose or gain more than a few seconds in a twelvemonth. Its whole
merit is in keeping time accurately.”

“Still I do not see how that can be any thing more than a very good
watch.”

“You _will_ see in a minute, Rose. For purposes that you will presently
understand, books are calculated for certain meridians, or longitudes,
as at Greenwich and Paris, and those who use the books calculated for
Greenwich get their chronometers set at Greenwich, and those who use the
Paris, get their chronometers set to Paris time. When I was last in
England, I took this watch to Greenwich, and had it set at the
Observatory by the true solar time. Ever since it has been running by
that time, and what you see here is the true Greenwich time, after
allowing for a second or two that it may have lost or gained.”

“All that is plain enough,” said the much interested Rose, “but of what
use is it all?”

“To help mariners to find their longitude at sea, and thus know where
they are. As the sun passes so far north, and so far south of the
equator each year, it is easy enough to find the latitude, by observing
his position at noon-day; but for a long time seamen had great
difficulty in ascertaining their longitudes. That, too, is done by
observing the different heavenly bodies, and with greater accuracy than
by any other process; but this thought of measuring the time is very
simple, and so easily put in practice, that we all run by it now.”

“Still I cannot understand it,” said Rose, looking so intently, so
eagerly, and so intelligently into the handsome mate’s eyes, that he
found it was pleasant to teach her other things besides how to love.

“I will explain it. Having the Greenwich time in the watch, we observe
the sun, in order to ascertain the true time, wherever we may happen to
be. It is a simple thing to ascertain the true time of day by an
observation of the sun, which marks the hours in his track; and when we
get our observation, we have some one to note the time at a particular
instant on the chronometer. By noting the hour, minutes, and seconds, at
Greenwich, at the very instant we observe here, when we have calculated
from that observation the time here, we have only to add, or subtract,
the time here from that of Greenwich, to know precisely how far east or
west we are from Greenwich, which gives us our longitude.”

“I begin to comprehend it again,” exclaimed Rose, delighted at the
acquisition in knowledge she had just made. “How beautiful it is, yet
how simple—but why do I forget it?”

“Perfectly simple, and perfectly sure, too, when the chronometer is
accurate, and the observations are nicely made. It is seldom we are more
than eight or ten miles out of the way, and for them we keep a look-out.
It is only to ascertain the time where you are, by means that are easily
used, then look at your watch to learn the time of day at Greenwich, or
any other meridian you may have selected, and to calculate your
distance, east or west, from that meridian,by the difference in the two
times.”

Rose could have listened all night, for her quick mind readily
comprehended the principle which lies at the bottom of this useful
process, though still ignorant of some of the details. This time she was
determined to secure her acquisition, though it is quite probable that,
woman-like, they were once more lost, almost as easily as made. Mulford,
however, was obliged to leave her, to look at the vessel, before he
stretched himself on the deck, in an old sail; it having been previously
determined that he should sleep first, while the wind was light, and
that Jack Tier, assisted by the females, should keep the first watch.
Rose would not detain the mate, therefore, but let him go his way, in
order to see that all was right before he took his rest.

Mrs. Budd had listened to Mulford’s second explanation of the common
mode of ascertaining the longitude, with all the attention of which she
was capable; but it far exceeded the powers of her mind to comprehend
it. There are persons who accustom themselves to think so superficially,
that it becomes a painful process to attempt to dive into any of the
_arcana_ of nature, and who ever turn from such investigations wearied
and disgusted. Many of these persons, perhaps most of them, need only a
little patience and perseverance to comprehend all the more familiar
phenomena, but they cannot command even that much of the two qualities
named to obtain the knowledge they would fain wish to possess. Mrs. Budd
did not belong to a division as high in the intellectual scale as even
this vapid class. Her intellect was unequal to embracing any thing of an
abstracted character, and only received the most obvious impressions,
and those quite half the time it received wrong. The mate’s reasoning,
therefore, was not only inexplicable to her, but it sounded absurd and
impossible.

“Rosy dear,” said the worthy relict, as soon as she saw Mulford stretch
his fine frame on his bed of canvas, speaking at the same time in a low,
confidential tone to her niece, “what was it that Harry was telling you
a little while ago. It sounded to me like rank nonsense; and men _will_
talk nonsense to young girls, as I have so often warned you, child. You
must never listen to their _nonsense_, Rosy; but remember your catechism
and confirmation vow, and be a good girl.”

To how many of the feeble-minded and erring do those offices of the
church prove a stay and support, when their own ordinary powers of
resistance would fail them. Rose, however, viewed the matter just as it
was, and answered accordingly.

“But this was nothing of that nature, aunty,” she said, “and only an
account of the mode of finding out where a ship is, when out of sight of
land, in the middle of the ocean. We had the same subject up the other
day.”

“And how did Harry tell you, this time, that was done, my dear?”

“By finding the difference in the time of day, between two places—just
as he did before.”

“But there is no difference in the time of day, child, when the clocks
go well.”

“Yes, there is, aunty dear, as the sun rises in one place before it does
in another.”

“Rose, you’ve been listening to nonsense now! Remember what I have so
often told you about young men, and their way of talking. I admit Harry
Mulford is a respectable youth, and has respectable connections, and
since you like one another, you may have him, with all my heart, as soon
as he gets a full-jiggered ship, for I am resolved no niece of my poor
dear husband’s shall ever marry a mate, or a captain even, unless he has
a full-jiggered ship under his feet. But do not talk nonsense with him.
Nonsense is nonsense, though a sensible man talks it. As for all this
stuff about the time of day, you can see it is nonsense, as the sun
rises but once in twenty-four hours, and of course there cannot be two
times, as you call it.”

“But, aunty dear, it is not always noon at London when it is noon at New
York.”

“Fiddle-faddle, child; noon is noon, and there are no more too noons
than two suns, or two times. Distrust what young men tell you, Rosy, if
you would be safe, though they should tell you you are handsome.”

Poor Rose sighed, and gave up the explanation in despair. Then a smile
played around her pretty mouth. It was not at her aunt that she smiled;
this she never permitted herself to do, weak as was that person, and
weak as she saw her to be; she smiled at the recollection how often
Mulford had hinted at her good looks—for Rose was a female, and had her
own weaknesses, as well as another. But the necessity of acting soon
drove these thoughts from her mind, and Rose sought Jack Tier, to confer
with him on the subject of their new duties.

As for Harry Mulford, his head was no sooner laid on its bunch of sail
than he fell into a profound sleep. There he lay, slumbering as the
seaman slumbers, with no sense of surrounding things. The immense
fatigues of that and of the two preceding days,—for he had toiled at
the pumps even long after night had come, until the vessel was
clear,—weighed him down, and nature was now claiming her influence, and
taking a respite from exertion. Had he been left to himself, it is
probable the mate would not have arisen until the sun had reappeared
some hours.

It is now necessary to explain more minutely the precise condition, as
well as the situation of the schooner. On quitting his port, Mulford had
made a stretch of some two leagues in length, toward the northward and
eastward, when he tacked and stood to the southward. There was enough of
southing in the wind, to make his last course nearly due south. As he
neared the reef, he found that he fell in some miles to the eastward of
the islets,—proof that he was doing very well, and that there was no
current to do him any material harm, if, indeed, there were not actually
a current in his favor. He next tacked to the northward again, and stood
in that direction until near night, when he once more went about. The
wind was now so light that he saw little prospect of getting in with the
reef again, until the return of day; but as he had left orders with Jack
Tier to be called at twelve o’clock, at all events, this gave him no
uneasiness. At the time when the mate lay down to take his rest,
therefore, the schooner was quite five-and-twenty miles to windward of
the Dry Tortugas, and some twenty miles to the northward of the Florida
Reef, with the wind quite light at east-southeast. Such, then, was the
position or situation of the schooner.

As respects her condition, it is easily described. She had but the three
sails bent,—mainsail, foresail and jib. Her topmasts had been struck,
and all the hamper that belonged to them was below. The mainsail was
single reeled, and the foresail and jib were without their bonnets, as
has already been mentioned. This was somewhat short canvas, but Mulford
knew that it would render his craft more manageable in the event of a
blow. Usually, at that season and in that region, the east trades
prevailed with great steadiness, sometimes diverging a little south of
east, as at present, and generally blowing fresh. But, for a short time
previously to, and ever since the tornado, the wind had been unsettled,
the old currents appearing to regain their ascendancy by fits, and then
losing it, in squalls, contrary currents, and even by short calms.

The conference between Jack Tier and Rose was frank and confidential.

“We must depend mainly on you,” said the latter, turning to look toward
the spot where Mulford lay, buried in the deepest sleep that had ever
gained power over him. “Harry is _so_ fatigued! It would be shameful to
awaken him a moment sooner than is necessary.”

“Ay, ay; so it is always with young women, when they lets a young man
gain their ears,” answered Jack, without the least circumlocution; “so
it is, and so it always will be, I’m afeard. Nevertheless, men is
willians.”

Rose was not affronted at this plain allusion to the power that Mulford
had obtained over her feelings. It would seem that Jack had got to be so
intimate in the cabins, that his sex was, in a measure, forgotten; and
it is certain that his recent services were not. Without a question, but
for his interference, the pretty Rose Budd would, at that moment, have
been the prisoner of Spike, and most probably the victim of his design
to compel her to marry him.

“All men are not Stephen Spikes,” said Rose, earnestly, “and least of
all is Harry Mulford to be reckoned as one of his sort. But, we must
manage to take care of the schooner, the whole night, and let Harry get
his rest. He wished to be called at twelve, but we can easily let the
hour go by, and not awaken him.”

“The commanding officer ought not to be sarved so, Miss Rose. What he
says is to be done.”

“I know it, Jack, as to ordinary matters; but Harry left these orders
that we might have our share of rest, and for no other reason at all.
And what is to prevent our having it? We are four, and can divide
ourselves into two watches; one watch can sleep while the other keeps a
lookout.”

“Ay, ay, and pretty watches they _would_ be! There’s Madam Budd, now;
why, she’s quite a navigator, and knows all about weerin’ and haulin’,
and I dares to say could put the schooner about, to keep her off the
reef on a pinch; though which way the craft would come round, could best
be told a’ter it has been done. It’s as much as _I’d_ undertake myself,
Miss Rose, to take care of the schooner, should it come on to blow; and
as for you, Madam Budd, and that squalling Irish woman, you’d be no
better than so many housewives ashore.”

“We have strength, and we have courage, and we can pull, as you have
seen. I know very well which way to put the helm now, and Biddy is as
strong as you are yourself, and could help me all I wished. Then we
could always call you, at need, and have your assistance. Nay, Harry
himself can be called, if there should be a real necessity for it, and I
_do_ wish he may not be disturbed until there is that necessity.”

It was with a good deal of reluctance that Jack allowed himself to be
persuaded into this scheme. He insisted, for a long time, that an
officer should be called at the hour mentioned by himself and declared
he had never known such an order neglected, “marchant-man, privateer, or
man-of-war.” Rose prevailed over his scruples, however, and there was a
meeting of the three females to make the final arrangements. Mrs. Budd,
a kind-hearted woman, at the worst, gave her assent most cheerfully,
though Rose was a little startled with the nature of the reasoning, with
which it was accompanied.

“You are quite right, Rosy dear,” said the aunt, “and the thing is very
easily done. I’ve long wanted to keep one watch, at sea; just one watch;
to complete my maritime education. Your poor uncle used to say, ‘Give my
wife but one night-watch, and you’d have as good a seaman in her as
heart could wish.’ I’m sure I’ve had night-watches enough with him and
his ailings; but it seems that _they_ were not the sort of watches he
meant. Indeed, I didn’t know till this evening there were so many
watches in the world, at all. But this is just what I want, and just
what I’m resolved to have. Tier shall command one watch, and I’ll
command the other. Jack’s shall be the ‘dog-watch,’ as they call it, and
mine shall be the ‘middle-watch,’ and last till morning. You shall be in
Jack’s watch, Rose, and Biddy shall be in mine. You know a good deal
that Jack don’t know, and Biddy can do a good deal I’m rather too stout
to do. I don’t like pulling ropes, but as for _ordering_, I’ll turn my
back on no captain’s widow out of York.”

Rose had her own misgivings on the subject of her aunt’s issuing orders
on such a subject to any one, but she made the best of necessity, and
completed the arrangements without further discussion. Her great anxiety
was to secure a good night’s rest for Harry, already feeling a woman’s
care in the comfort and ease of the man she loved. And Rose did love
Harry Mulford warmly and sincerely. If the very decided preference with
which she regarded him before they sailed, had not absolutely amounted
to passion, it had come so very near it as to render that access of
feeling certain, under the influence of the association and events which
succeeded. We have not thought it necessary to relate a tithe of the
interviews and intercourse that had taken place between the handsome
mate and the pretty Rose Budd, during the month they had now been
shipmates, having left the reader to imagine the natural course of
things, under such circumstances. Nevertheless, the plighted troth had
not been actually given until Harry joined her on the islet, at a moment
when she fancied herself abandoned to a fate almost as serious as death.
Rose had seen Mulford quit the brig, had watched the mode and manner of
his escape, and in almost breathless amazement, and felt how dear to her
he had become, by the glow of delight which warmed her heart, when
assured that he could not, would not, forsake her, even though he
remained at the risk of life. She was now, true to the instinct of her
sex, mostly occupied in making such a return for an attachment so
devoted as became her tenderness and the habits of her mind.

As Mrs. Budd chose what she was pleased to term the ‘middle-watch,’
giving to Jack Tier and Rose her ‘dog-watch,’ the two last were first on
duty. It is scarcely necessary to say that the captain’s widow got the
names of the watches all wrong, as she got the names of every thing else
about a vessel; but the plan was to divide the night equally between
these _quasi_ mariners, giving the first half to those who were first on
the look-out, and the remainder to their successors. It soon became so
calm, that Jack left the helm, and came and sat by Rose, on the trunk,
where they conversed confidentially for a long time. Although the reader
will, hereafter, be enabled to form some plausible conjectures on the
subject of this dialogue, we shall give him no part of it here. All that
need now be said, is to add, that Jack did most of the talking, that his
past life was the principal theme, and that the terrible Stephen Spike,
he from whom they were now so desirous of escaping, was largely mixed up
with the adventures recounted. Jack found in his companion a deeply
interested listener, although this was by no means the first time they
had gone over together the same story, and discussed the same events.
The conversation lasted until Tier, who watched the glass, seeing that
its sands had run out for the last time, announced the hour of midnight.
This was the moment when Mulford should have been called, but when Mrs.
Budd and Biddy Noon were actually awakened in his stead.

“Now, dear aunty,” said Rose, as she parted from the new watch to go and
catch a little sleep herself, “remember you are not to awaken Harry
first, but to call Tier and myself. It would have done your heart good
to have seen how sweetly he has been sleeping all this time. I do not
think he has stirred once since his head was laid on that bunch of
sails, and there he is, at this moment, sleeping like an infant!”

“Yes,” returned the relict, “it is always so with your true maritime
people. I have been sleeping a great deal more soundly, the whole of the
dog-watch, than I ever slept at home, in my own excellent bed. But it’s
your watch below, Rosy, and contrary to rule for you to stay on the
deck, after you’ve been relieved. I’ve heard this a thousand times.”

Rose was not sorry to lie down; and her head was scarcely on its pillow,
in the cabin, before she was fast asleep. As for Jack, he found a place
among Mulford’s sails, and was quickly in the same state.

To own the truth, Mrs. Budd was not quite as much at ease, in her new
station, for the first half hour, as she had fancied to herself might
prove to be case. It was a flat calm, it is true; but the widow felt
oppressed with responsibility and the novelty of her situation. Time and
again had she said, and even imagined, she should be delighted to fill
the very station she then occupied, or to be in charge of a deck, in a
“middle-watch.” In this instance, however, as in so many others, reality
did not equal anticipation. She wished to be doing every thing, but did
not know how to do any thing. As for Biddy, she was even worse off than
her mistress. A month’s experience, or for that matter a twelvemonth’s,
could not unravel to her the mysteries of even a schooner’s rigging.
Mrs. Budd had placed her “at the wheel,” as she called it, though the
vessel had no wheel, being steered by a tiller on deck, in the
’long-shore fashion. In stationing Biddy, the widow told her that she
was to play “tricks at the wheel,” leaving it to the astounded Irish
woman’s imagination to discover what those tricks were. Failing in
ascertaining what might be the nature of her “tricks at the wheel,”
Biddy was content to do nothing, and nothing, under the circumstances,
was perhaps the very best thing she could have done.

Little was required to be done for the first four hours of Mrs. Budd’s
watch. All that time, Rose slept in her berth, and Mulford and Jack Tier
on their sail, while Biddy had played the wheel a “trick,” indeed, by
lying down on deck, and sleeping, too, as soundly as if she were in the
county Down itself. But there was to be an end of this tranquillity.
Suddenly the wind began to blow. At first, the breeze came in fitful
puffs, which were neither very strong nor very lasting. This induced
Mrs. Budd to awaken Biddy. Luckily, a schooner without a topsail could
not very well be taken aback, especially as the head-sheets worked on
travelers, and Mrs. Budd and her assistant contrived to manage the
tiller very well for the first hour that these varying puffs of wind
lasted. It is true, the tiller was lashed, and it is also true, the
schooner ran in all directions, having actually headed to all the
cardinal points of the compass, under her present management. At length,
Mrs. Budd became alarmed. A puff of wind came so strong, as to cause the
vessel to lie over so far as to bring the water into the lee scuppers.
She called Jack Tier herself, therefore, and sent Biddy down to awaken
Rose. In a minute, both these auxiliaries appeared on deck. The wind
just then lulled, and Rose, supposing her aunt was frightened at
trifles, insisted on it that Harry should be permitted to sleep on. He
had turned over once, in the course of the night, but not once had he
raised his head from his pillow.

As soon as reinforced, Mrs. Budd began to bustle about, and to give
commands, such as they were, in order to prove that she was unterrified.
Jack Tier gaped at her elbow, and by way of something to do, he laid his
hand on the painter of the Swash’s boat, which boat was towing astern,
and remarked that “some know-nothing had belayed it with three
half-hitches.” This was enough for the relict. She had often heard the
saying that “_three_ half hitches lost the king’s long-boat,” and she
busied herself, at once, in repairing so imminent an evil. It was far
easier for the good woman to talk than to act; she became what is called
“all fingers and thumbs,” and in loosening the third half-hitch, she
cast off the two others. At that instant, a puff of wind struck the
schooner again, and the end of the painter got away from the widow, who
had a last glimpse at the boat, as the vessel darted ahead, leaving its
little tender to vanish in the gloom of the night.

Jack was excessively provoked at this accident, for he had foreseen the
possibility of having recourse to that boat yet, in order to escape from
Spike. By abandoning the schooner, and pulling on to the reef, it might
have been possible to get out of their pursuer’s hands, when all other
means should fail them. As he was at the tiller, he put his helm up, and
ran off, until far enough to leeward to be to the westward of the boat,
when he might tack, fetch and recover it. Nevertheless, it now blew much
harder than he liked, for the schooner seemed to be unusually tender.
Had he the force to do it, he would have brailed the foresail. He
desired Rose to call Mulford, but she hesitated about complying.

“Call him—call the mate, I say,” cried out Jack, in a voice that proved
how much he was in earnest. “These puffs come heavy, I can tell you, and
they come often, too. Call him—call him, at once, Miss Rose, for it is
time to tack if we wish to recover the boat. Tell him, too, to brail the
foresail, while we are in stays—that’s right; another call will start
him up.”

The other call was given, aided by a gentle shake from Rose’s hand.
Harry was on his feet in a moment. A passing instant was necessary to
clear his faculties, and to recover the tenor of his thoughts. During
that instant, the mate heard Jack Tier’s shrill cry of “hard a-lee—get
in that foresail—bear a-hand—in with it, I say.”

The wind came rushing and roaring, and the flaps of the canvas were
violent and heavy.

“In with the foresail, I say,” shouted Jack Tier. “She flies round like
a top, and will be off the wind on the other tack presently. Bear
a-hand!—bear a-hand! It looks black as night to windward.”

Mulford then regained all his powers. He sprang to the fore-sheet,
calling on the others for aid. The violent surges produced by the wind
prevented his grasping the sheet as soon as he could wish, and the
vessel whirled round on her heel, like a steed that is frightened. At
that critical and dangerous instant, when the schooner was nearly
without motion through the water, a squall struck the flattened sails,
and bowed her down as the willow bends to the gale. Mrs. Budd and Biddy
screamed as usual, and Jack shouted until his voice seemed cracked, to
“let go the head-sheets.” Mulford did make one leap forward, to execute
this necessary office, when the inclining plane of the deck told him it
was too late. The wind fairly howled for a minute, and over went the
schooner, the remains of her cargo shifting as she capsized, in a way to
bring her very nearly bottom upward.

-----

[3] We suppress the names used by Mrs. Budd, out of delicacy to the
individuals mentioned, who are still living.

                                                  [_To be continued._

                 *        *        *        *        *



                    TO MRS. P——, OF CHESTNUT STREET.


    Gentle as Aurora’s dawning,
      Ere she wakes the blushing day,
    Broke the light of girlhood’s morning
      O’er her bright exulting way:
    All her hopes were buoyant—glowing;
      Rapture plumed the winged hours;
    And, with mirth and music flowing,
      Every foot-print filled with flowers.

    Such was E—’s spring-day dreaming
      As her path, through smiles and tears,
    Beckoned her to visions beaming
      On the front of after years:
    O’er her form while Time was breathing
      All of Beauty’s affluence now,
    Grace and loveliness were wreathing
      Garlands round her sunny brow.

    ’Midst her tresses archly smiling,
      Love, the wily urchin, played;
    Through her eyes he peered beguiling,
      Round her lips he ever strayed:
    In each limb, o’er every feature,
      Unrestrained he seemed to move,
    Till at length the peerless creature
      Yielded all her soul to love!

    Again her bark is on the billow,
      Where the pageant Pleasure glides;
    Not a thought disturbs her pillow
      As she skims its sparkling tides:
    Not a shade of earthly sorrow
      Dims the wonder of her eye,
    While its lustre seems to borrow
      Radiance from tranquillity!

    Still, at times, a touch of sadness
      In its calm expressive beam
    Strives to pale the light of gladness
      That illumed her early dream:
    And ’tis said she’s lost to feeling—
      Spurning Nature’s high behest:
    Ne’er by look or word revealing
      Aught of passion in her breast!

    Nay! though summer’s pride may wither;
      Azure skies may lose their blue,
    And the bee no longer gather
      From the flower the honey-dew;
    In her world of bright emotion,
      Woman’s heart must beat the same,
    Cherishing some deep devotion
      With a pure undying flame!

                 *        *        *        *        *



                           SEA-SIDE MUSINGS.


                           BY ADALIZA CUTTER.


    I stood beside the moaning sea one bright autumnal day,
    And careless as a singing-bird whiled golden hours away;
    Above me was a sunny sky, the winds were hushed to rest,
    Gently the waves arose and fell, upon old ocean’s breast.

    I gazed into the blue above and saw the sun’s rich glow,
    I turned, and saw another sun gleam in the blue below,
    One fleecy cloud like fairy robe upon the air did ride,
    One little cloud, its own fair mate, sailed o’er the glassy tide.

    A bright plumed bird was in the sky, its glitt’ring pinions free,
    Another tiny bird I saw, for in the azure sea,
    Down flew the one, the other up from ocean’s coral floor,
    They kissed, then lightly flew away, and they were seen no more.

    I almost thought a mermaid’s form would greet my eager view,
    That water nymphs would rise and dance upon the waves so blue,
    Or that some little fairy queen, with all her elfin train,
    Would come and hold their festivals upon the sunlit main.

    As on that sunny beach I stood, I fancied I could hear
    Their voices low and musical, their silvery laughter clear;
    I almost wished myself a fay, that I might join their throng,
    To laugh, and dance, and dive with them, and sing the merry song.

    I wished I had a little boat—a tiny painted oar,
    That I might float upon the sea, far from that sandy shore,
    Far, far away, until no sight would meet my kindling eye,
    Save the blue ocean at my feet, and the blue boundless sky.

    Far off, as far as eye could see, the white-sailed ships did glide
    Like spirits o’er the bounding deep, in glory and in pride,
    Like light clouds on the ocean’s breast these vessels seemed to be,
    For thousand times ten thousand waves rolled between them and me.

    O pleasant, pleasant were the hours I spent upon that shore,
    Their memory within my heart will linger evermore,
    Ay, they will live within this heart among the bright and fair,
    The beautiful and sunny things which I have garnered there.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                                A DREAM.


                           BY FANNY FORESTER.


There is a great deal of reading in the world now-a-days, and some
strange reading—reading that furnishes food for dreams, and not a
little that would starve the intellect of a sleeping butterfly—the
_pâté de fois gras_ for the _gourmand_, and the wholesome brown bread
for the multitude. The most, however, is of the first and second kind;
both very useful—for even a famine has its uses. Last night I chanced
upon a long article which lulled me to sleep in the third paragraph; but
its soporific qualities were not sufficiently powerful to put the mind
at rest entirely. Oh! how the busy little sprites from dream-land raced
through the corridors and tripped it in the dark saloons of my poor
brain! And what queer phantasies they braided! As it pleaseth thee,
reader mine, a page or two shall be broidered with the shreds they left,
when they scampered off at the first day-dawn of waking reason peeping
through the windows of their festal palace. It will serve as a clue to
the kind of printed lullaby which furnished the wine for their revels.

It seemed a day in winter, chilly and boisterous, and as I drew my
stuffed-chair to the window, I mentally thanked God for the comforts of
a quiet, happy fireside; and thought with more uneasiness than I should
have cared to express of one who, could he have divined my thoughts,
would have laughed at me for the womanly sympathy. It is impossible to
comprehend a strength or power of endurance beyond our own; and my young
brother, with his ready scoff, on the very mention of the word
_fatigue_, and his strong hand playfully pinioning me as with a chain of
iron, had always been a perfect marvel to me. I looked out upon the
scudding clouds, and whirling snow, and upon the trackless road, and
wondered if there were any sufferers abroad; but before the thought had
fairly flitted across my brain I caught a glimpse of the figure of a
woman. A woman out on such a day! poor creature! Yet—_could_ I be
mistaken? No, it was—it surely was—my Cousin ’Bel! I did not wait to
wonder whence she came; it was enough to see her there, and in such
woful plight. On she came, now nearly buried in an enormous snow-drift,
now rising, the mark for the bold wind’s buffetings, her cloak
unclasped, and flapping about her like the wings of some great bird, her
hood made fast to the back of her neck by the strings which seemed
cutting into her reddened throat, her loosened hair streaming out in
every direction, all powdered over with the fleecy snow, and her veil
caracoling high in air, performing all the antics of a tumbler’s pony.
The snow was deep—_so_ deep! ugh! it makes me shiver to think of it!
But flouncing on she came, her beautiful face distorted and purple with
the cold and exertion—on, unaided, but not alone. Close behind her,
leisurely walking in the path she was making, who should I see but _big
Sam Jones_! Everybody knows Sam Jones, at least everybody about
Alderbrook, with his brawny shoulders and long, strong locomotives. He
might have tucked poor ’Bel into the hollow of his arm, and fancied he
was carrying a kitten. But not he. He folded his arms on his tough
sinewy chest, and sauntered along, till ’Bel, worn out with toiling and
tugging and battling with wind and storm, sunk down at last exhausted.

“Lost footing, Miss? It isn’t much of a storm,” observed Sam, with the
most good-natured, though contemptuous indifference; and on he passed,
leaving the lady to _find footing_ as best she might. Poor ’Bel! She was
(not poetically, but literally) in “snowy vestments, pure and white,”
when, panting and struggling, she resumed her way; and, by that time,
the tracks of big Sam, “far between” at best, were nearly filled with
snow.

“Bless me! ’Bel Forester! What _can_ have brought you out on such a day
as this?” I exclaimed, drawing her through the half-opened door, and
shivering as the cold air burst in at the gap, and whisked about my
ears. “Anybody sick? Any—”

“No-h! no! wait—till—uh!—till—I—get breath—uh!”

Great alarm were we in, and there was rubbing of hands, and chafing of
temples, and screaming among the children, and running for salts, till
finally the steaming cup was brought from the kitchen, and poor ’Bel was
scalded back to life.

“What is it, ’Bella?” I again inquired, when a proper time had elapsed.
“Do tell us what has happened!”

“Nothing. I thought I would just step in and bring you a paper. The
critics have taken you up.”

“ME!”

There _was_ something shocking in it, inconceivably shocking; and my
heart cut an involuntary pigeon-wing, (it hasn’t learned the Polka,)
while I mechanically stretched out my hand for the paper. But there was
a look on the face of Cousin ’Bel, unlike the one she wore when she
first encouraged my first timid sketch; and I felt that I should have
but partial sympathy. (Thank Heaven, it was only a dream!) Under such
circumstances, it was best not to appear too anxious.

“Is the criticism so very important,” I inquired, turning my eyes with
desperate resolution from the paper, which rustled in my shaking hand,
“that you should come to bring it me on such a day as this?”

“Pretty important, as things go now; and, of course, the storm would
have no influence in keeping me in doors.”

“_Of course!_”

“Ay! you act as though you had not heard of the Great Reform.”

How my curiosity was divided between the news and the criticism!

“Alderbrook is an out-of-the-way place,” interposed my mother.

“And so you really have not heard of the mighty revolution—the
establishment of principles of equality—the practical adoption of that
great first truth upon the face of our constitution, which is the
corner-stone of our liberties, declaring that not merely all men, but
all mankind are created free and equal.”

How eloquent ’Bel had grown! what _could_ it mean!

“In a word,” said my mother, rather entreatingly, “soberly and simply,
’Bella, we do not understand all this. What is the Great Reform?”

“In a word, then, aunty,” (’Bel forgot for a moment her pompous tone,)
“the establishment of Woman’s Rights.”

“Indeed!” (I thought I detected a pleased look even in my mother’s calm
eye; and for myself I turned a _pirouette_. Why, I did not exactly know,
but there was something in the words to tickle the ear.) “Indeed! and
what has that to do with your exposing your health in such a storm as
this?” (Ah! I was mistaken. My mother was older and wiser than ’Bel and
I.)

“Health! Never fear; we are not to be so whimsical as to mind those
things any more. Since we have succeeded in making men acknowledge, not
only our intellectual equality, but our entire fitness for the
performance of all the duties which have hitherto devolved on them
exclusively, we have set about establishing another point. Indeed, we
never shall be secure in the possession of our _rights_ till this point
is gained. We find that the general impression concerning our physical
weakness and delicacy of constitution is of great disadvantage to us, a
drawback on our enterprise, and we intend now to prove that we have as
much muscular strength as the other sex. We are their equals _in every
respect_; and if the truth be not willingly acknowledged, it must be
done upon compulsion.”

“Bless me, ’Bel!” But I broke off suddenly. _Could_ that be Cousin ’Bel?
If so, how metamorphosed! What an unnatural expression had crept over
her face! And how completely indurated were the once flexible muscles!

“Our new theory concerning this,” resumed my cousin, “is that the
imagination—”

But I lost ’Bel’s explanation, for by this time I had dipped into the
criticism, and the Great Reform, thrilling as the news had been, was
forgotten. She talked on, and my mother replied, but their voices
sounded like the murmur of a sea-shell I had no ear nor eye for any
thing but the great iron-shod foot that had suddenly planted itself on
my violet-bank.

“Sentimental.” True; but is sentiment, pure sentiment, a sin?

“Young-womanly.” Well, what else should the doings of a young woman be?

“Commonplace.” Ay; so is the poetry written by God the world over. I did
not profess to bring original creations—I but copied, here and there, a
touch from the simple things I loved.

“No depth of thought or strength of expression.”

I read on. Heavier and thicker came down the stunning blows, till I
could think of nothing so like it as Saturn among the poor frightened
fairies. I finished, and lifted my hand to see if my head were safe.

“Why this is preposterous!” at last I exclaimed, gaping in utter
amazement at the Procrustean bed on which I found my poor little fancies
stretched. “Every word is true; but who would think of whipping the poor
fawn into becoming an elephant, or of _faulting_ (as the New-lights say)
the same timid little trembler for not having the strength and courage
of the lion? Robin-red-breasts will not be allowed to fly hereafter,
because, forsooth, they have not wings fit to battle with the whirlwind,
eyes of flame, and hoarse screaming voices. Why I never professed to be
more than a Robin-red-breast, ’Bella.”

“True, but you must profess it _now_; and attain to something higher,
too, or feel your inferiority. Since the Great Reform, women do not talk
of one thing’s being proper for _them_ and another improper—every thing
is proper that they can do; and they _must do every thing that man has
done_, for it has been decided that they are fully his equals.
Henceforth in literature you must cultivate _strength_ at the expense
of—”

“But _our tastes_, ’Bel—if there were nothing else in the way—”

“We must correct our false feminine tastes. Recollect that hereafter we
are not to be the toys of the drawing-room, nor dawdle away our time in
the practice of airs and graces—”

“Ah! ’Bel, ’Bel! that’s a masculine accusation—don’t copy.”

“Well, then, we are not to lounge by the fireside—rocking cradles,
tending flowers, and arranging pretty dresses. Our influence is
extended, our sphere is widened. Our voices are to be heard—”

“What a pity, ’Bel, that the election is over; it would be such a
charming thing to ‘Hurrah for Polk and Dallas!’”

“Time enough for that four years hence; and, by the way, you may as well
begin to prepare for the next campaign. I intend to adopt oratory as a
profession; and you would do very respectably in that line, too, I
think.”

I looked despairingly at the paper in my hand, and wondered if I _could_
make a speech! At any rate, my literary career was ended. I _spoke_ of
the simplicity of my tastes, but I _felt_

        (“My gentle boy, remember this
        Is nothing but a dream.”)

a conscious weakness, as though I had suddenly been called upon to swing
an axe or lift a sledge-hammer. I could admire St. Paul’s, but (I speak
guardedly, lest my capabilities should be questioned,) it would not be
in accordance with my taste to conceive the plan or perform the labor of
building. So, though I might read some pages of Lord Verulam—nay,
actually admire them—their production would not have been to
me—_agreeable_. But the plea would do no longer: the mantle of feminine
tastes had suddenly been torn from me, and the wren was to be measured
by the king of birds.

“To the stump then,” thought I. “What a glorious reform this is, after
all! From being a scribbler in a small way, who knows but I may in time
become the first orator in the land? Women are proverbial for tonguely
gifts, and orators do not require very great depth. Like the belle with
her chit-chat, it is the tone and manner which do execution. To the
stump! Hur—”

I didn’t finish the hurrah. I might have done so, but for a little
womanly squeamishness, which could not be overcome all in a moment. Then
such influences! Up started my birdie with a rustle and twitter, shaking
its pretty wing, to tell me I must feed it if I would have it give me
music; a “wee toddling thing” tugged at my skirt, and lisped in a way
that I thought particularly bright and precocious, “take me up, sissy;”
and there was many a thing about the room—the work of my own fingers,
the charmed companions of holy hours—many things that laid a finger
upon the lip of my spirit. There is an atmosphere hovering about the
altar of a happy, love-guarded home, which—no matter! it had a very
troublesome, _hush-up_ way, in my dream of the Great Reform.

“I must get away from these reminiscences of past days,” said I, “before
I can _whoop_ or _hurrah_ to any purpose. I will get father to take me
to the city—”

“_Take_ you to the city! Take you, you say! And why not take yourself
there? What an arrant simpleton! I thought you would have more spirit,
Fan.”

“And—can I go alone?”

“Alone! certainly; alone and independently. Why, everybody would laugh
now-a-days to see you hanging to your father’s arm, like a child that is
just learning to walk.”

“Bless me, ’Bel! how could I—excellent! Then I never shall be obliged
to stay at home for lack of company, but can go when and where I please.
And I am not to be annoyed any more by officious collectors and captains
putting themselves every half hour in my way, to know if I am
‘comfortable, Miss?’ Alone and independently! Jubilate!”

“Thoughts have wings,” poets say; and they have said it so often that
parrot prose has taken up the echo, and thinks the sentiment its own
property. But “thoughts have wings,” nevertheless; and, at a flap of the
wing of that last exultant thought, home, Cousin ’Bel, and all vanished;
and I was on board a North River steamer, “alone and independent.” But
did I shout “_jubilate_” now? It was the least bit in the world
forlorn—that standing on the deck, with crowds of people all about me,
no one caring a clay pipe-stem, whether I was happy or miserable,
comfortable or suffering from fatigue and chilliness. I looked down into
the water, up at the sky, gazed at the shore (rather vacantly, I must
own,) and then turned to the people jostling past each other with a
care-for-naught air, as though “number one is the first law of nature”
had been the creed of everybody. “Independence may be a fine thing,”
thought I, “no doubt it is a fine thing, but—heigho!”

Somebody stepped on my dress. “Pardon, Miss!” The words popped pertly
from the lips, as men make a kind of pretence for an apology to each
other, with the head turned the other way. Dear me! what had I done to
forfeit my claim to that respectful deference of manner which I had
always considered a woman’s birth-right? My face reddened, half with
anger, half mortification; but luckily I soon remembered that “we were
_equal_ now;” and that the sacrifice could not all be on one side. There
was a _leveling up_, and a _leveling down_ in the Reform. Of course, we
could not gain an equality of strength and independence and maintain a
superiority of delicacy. That would be giving us a decided advantage. On
reflection I became reconciled; but the incident had disconcerted me a
little, and my position was not made more comfortable by observing that
staring had become quite the fashion. It was one of the fruits of
_equality_, to be sure; but while I drew my thick green veil, and turned
away to gaze into the water, I was very nearly guilty of the heresy of
wondering if we had not lost almost as much as we had gained. While I
stood here, the bell rang for supper, and there was a general rush to
the cabin. I hesitated a moment, (for I was afraid of being knocked down
in the confusion,) and then stepped along very timidly behind.

“It will be so awkward to go in and brush about for a seat!” said
bashfulness, pinching at my cheeks until there seemed to have been a
fire kindled on each.

“Pooh!” answered the Reform-spirit, “elbow your way through the crowd,
and allow yourself to be bullied by nobody.”

Bashfulness attempted another faint remonstrance, but I choked down the
foolish suggestions, as quite unworthy a woman of spirit, and made my
way resolutely along. My troublesome timidity had made me slow of foot;
for, by the time I gained the door, all the passengers were seated, and
the earnest clatter of knife and fork made my heart quake. “It is
nothing,” thought I, “I _will_ go in.” But I didn’t; _I was alone_.
“This is foolish,” urged common sense, “just step in quietly; nobody
will mind it.”

Ah! that was the thing. Nobody would mind it, except to look up with
that rude stare which I had already learned to dread; and if there
_should_ be any trouble about finding a vacant seat—oh, it would be
_too_ much! An ounce more of mortification, and I should jump into the
river. I was pretty hungry, but supper was nothing in comparison, and I
retreated to the deck. By and by, the passengers returned; and by this
time I had become sufficiently composed to watch others instead of
thinking all the time of myself. Men were sitting, and women standing
all about the deck, engaged in arguments which I found partook not a
little of the tone and manner which characterized most of the
contentions of last autumn. There is less of courtesy; men are more
bitter and vituperative in an argument on politics than on any other
subject, for the reason that they have not merely that one proposition
to defend, but pride of party to support; they are not holding an
argument with one man simply to establish a truth, but they are opposing
a party which it is conducive to their interest—whether right or not,
they _think so_—to put down. Precisely so was it in this case; though a
few of the more magnanimous among men, or a few, tired of “making
themselves slaves to keep their wives and daughters on a throne,” as
somebody has it, might not have been annoyed by the Great Reform, yet
the generality felt the party-spirit strong within them, and a theory
did not gain any thing in their eyes by being broached by a woman. I
remembered that in former days women were always the winners in a
controversy; though sometimes there was a biting of lips, and a forcing
of smiles, and bows, to let it be so; but now it was exactly the
reverse. Perhaps you will think the cause of truth gained by the change.
No such thing. There was no more impartiality than before. The
volubility of the women tried hard to match itself against the
stentorian voices of the men, and sometimes succeeded; the former were
gainers in the light-artillery of wit, but the latter invariably came in
with a heavy cannonade of _put-down-ism_, which would never have been
attempted even by a stage-driver, in such a presence, under the _old
régime_. While I was watching these doings, and wondering what would
become of myself in this new state of things, we were all of us startled
by a sudden bustle in another part of the boat—loud, angry voices in
altercation, accompanied by blows. The confusion lasted but a moment,
and I saw the combatants separated—a very pretty, spirited woman, and a
fat elderly gentleman, who looked as though he might, in general, be
quite temperate in the matter of treating himself to a fit of anger. But
this time he had been provoked beyond endurance, by taunts that would
have roused the good old Doubter, and had resorted to _caning_. The lady
did not carry a _cane_, but she used the sharp point of her _parasol_ to
very good purpose, until the spectators interfered, and the combatants
were obliged to content themselves with _looking_ canes and parasols.
The next _stirring_ incident was the jingling of a bell along the
saloon, by way of an accompaniment to “Those passengers as has not paid
their fare, please step to the cap’n’s office and se-et-tle!” What next?
I had hoped for a few moments of quiet, and now to commit myself to the
tender mercies of the crowd! I saw a great broad-shouldered woman thrust
a baby into the arms of a sheepish-looking man, probably her husband,
and pull from her capacious pocket, with some ostentation, an enormous
leathern-wallet. “She is going to the cap’n’s office,” thought I, and I
twitched her sleeve.

“Will—will you, madam, be kind enough to procure a ticket for me?” To
make such a request of a woman! But she smiled and bowed very
condescendingly, flattered by the compliment I had paid her superiority.
“This is a little too bad,” thought I, as the woman put the ticket in my
hand. “I do not care to pass for an idiot, and I must make an effort; I
see what it is that I need.” So I thought all night of the landing, and
resolved, and re-resolved to “act worthy of myself” on that occasion.

“Have a cab?” “’ve cab?” “’ve cab?” “cab?” “carriage?” “cab?” Fifty
voices, and fifty whips pointing, and twice fifty arms extended in a
manner which seemed to me at least threatening. Oh! what could “a poor
lone woman” do? I was stunned, frightened—it was very silly, and I knew
it was, but that consciousness did not make me wiser. Trifles became
matters of mighty import, now that I was alone, and should be obliged to
look after every thing myself. I made a great effort, and at last got
ashore, my baggage beside me.

“’Ve cab?” “’ve cab?” “_have_ a cab?” Somebody was peremptory, and I
might as well answer. I opened my mouth, but something choked back the
sound.

“’Ve cab?” “carriage?” “cab?” It was like being amid a troop of yelling
savages; I could bear it no longer, and I pronounced “_yes!_” with
something between a shriek and a howl. On the instant, together went a
half dozen bent heads with a tremendous thump; five recoiled—_not_
speaking very gently—and left my trunk the prey of one, who was
probably superior to the others in hardness of skull. I was very glad to
escape that test of equality, at least. The man whisked my trunk lightly
over his shoulder, took my carpet-bag in hand, and strode away. If I
should lose sight of him! He went very fast, and my trembling limbs were
nearly helpless. Then all the men looked alike; all had trunks on their
shoulders, and carpet-bags in their hands, and all had very funny caps,
and very red ears, so—if I _should_ lose sight of him!—If he should
carry off my trunk! was my next practice in the use of the mood
subjunctive. (Lest it should be thought that ladies are subject to such
fears, which everybody knows would be, like mine of the cabman, a
wrongful suspicion, I must again remind the reader that this is _only a
dream_.) If he should carry off my trunk! There was something alarming
in the supposition; I was sufficiently fatigued and excited before; my
limbs were trembling, my face burning, and my heart fluttering; I gave a
bound forward and—_fell headlong_. I heard a coarse burst of laughter,
and thought of all those red, bloated faces turned toward me; and then
my dream became a kind of nightmare, and so ended or changed.

Next, I was before a large public building, around which a crowd of
people had gathered, and I was trying to force my way in. Nobody moved.
Some dreamer, whose remembrance of past things was assisted by good
nature, said something about “a lady;” but the crowd, instead of parting
and standing back, as in other times, at the talismanic word, laughed my
Don Quixote in the face. How I got in I know not, but I was in, at last.

“Better ’ave staid on the outside!” said a burly individual near me,
“there aint no seats to be had for love nor money.”

It was easy enough to be seen that nobody would owe a seat to courtesy.
So I leaned against a pillar, and tried to forget that I had a body. It
was no easy task, for here was an ache, and there a tremor, and there a
faintness, which made me very sensible of not being all spirit. I seemed
to be in a court-room, and a woman was speaking with great earnestness
in behalf of her client, a dog-stealer. She was very red in the face,
and very fierce in the eye; her voice, which was roused to its topmost
pitch, had a shrill squeak to it, which grated on my nerves like the
finger-nail upon dried plaster; and I could see the eyes of her
“honorable colleague” intently regarding her dress, from which two or
three hooks had bounded, apparently scared from their post by the
vehemence of her eloquence. He was undoubtedly meditating a joke at her
expense. One of the judges was a very pretty woman, who seemed to have
just come in possession of a new bracelet; for she kept up a constant
clasping and unclasping, and was evidently very well satisfied with the
curve of her arm, whatever she might have thought of the lawyer’s
speech. Another one observed the arm too—a neighbor on the bench, whom
I suspected of being a susceptible sort of a widower—and I thought to
myself that I should be very sorry to be a prisoner, looking for justice
to those two pre-occupied judges. The jury were half men, half women.
But I will not record my observations, lest it should be thought that I
dreamed very perversely. Suffice it, that I again pitied the poor
prisoner.

Oh! the difficulty of imagining oneself a spirit, with such fleshly
reminders! _Could_ I stand another moment? I looked as pleadingly as I
could about me, but nobody moved. Getting out seemed impossible, for the
passage was crowded. Oh! how I longed for “the good old days, the dear
old time, and all my peace of mind”—not forgetting somebody to find me
the _best seat_! It was no place to be in love with _equality_. I was
(it was very wrong, I know, and I might not be so tempted when awake,) I
was ready to sign myself Esau, jun.—barter my birthright of intellect,
and power, and independence, in short, every thing we had gained by the
Reform, for but the strong arm and protecting presence to take me
through that crowd. Luckily, I lacked the means of making my madness
practical, for not an arm offered itself, and not a face turned toward
me for any better purpose than to favor me with a familiar stare—an
expressive acknowledgment of _equality_, which had been one of the first
features of the Reform.

“Rather tiresome standing,” observed the burly individual before
mentioned, seeing me balance on my toes, and twist from side to side,
and try by various other methods of equal importance to rid myself of my
fatigue. “Rather tiresome standing,” and he changed his comfortable
position for one of like comfort; and stretched his arms along the back
of his seat with provoking complacency. I assented with a sigh.

“Missed it not coming earlier,” and he lolled back, resting his big head
on his own shoulders. Wouldn’t I have liked to be Robin Goodfellow, to
give him a pinch or two? There was no prospect of any body’s vacating a
seat; my limbs ached, I gasped for breath, reeled, and clutched
instinctively at the nearest object. It was the shaggy locks adorning
the big head; and they shook like a lion’s mane, recalling me to my
senses in time to evade the compliment of a doubled fist, which the
bewildered and resentful owner seemed inclined to offer me.

“I wonder if anybody would carry me out if I should faint,” thought I;
but I was not given to fainting, and I doubted whether I could do it
with the proper grace, though to be sure, gracefulness was a matter of
little moment, since (pardon! sleeping ears are dull, and my harsh word
is from Dreamland) _help one’s-self-fulness_ came into vogue. “What
_will_ become of me?”

“You little trembling simpleton,” whispered the Reform-spirit,
“strengthen up your head, and plant your foot firmly. Your fatigue is
all in the imagination. See how patiently those men are standing
yonder!—_imitate them_.”

“If I could. But what a hero the imagination must be to bring upon me
all these tortures!”

“You must control it—though, perhaps, it is expecting rather too much
of you at once; particularly as regards the physical woman.” (Woman was
the new name for the human race, not that the arguments in favor of its
adoption had been so very potent, but, luckily, the women had the
majority in the Senate.) “There is a barber’s shop over the way; you had
better walk in and rest yourself.”

“But how shall I get out? the passage is crowded.”

“Oh, never mind that—you can easily make an opening. Just put on a look
of resolution and walk straight-forward. They will grumble and push
some, but they will let you pass.”

“Ah! the look of resolution! Where am I to get it?”

“Why, if you are a miserable, paltry coward, of course, the meanness
will be visible on your countenance, and you cannot hope to deceive
anybody. The truth is, modesty has been stripped of its false charms
lately, and shown to be nothing more nor less than rank cowardice. What
is it that makes your head droop, and your cheeks redden? Are you afraid
anybody will harm you?”

This was a little too much; and my cheeks grew redder, but my head
elevated itself. “No! it is a something which God planted in my bosom,
something of which no Reform can rob me, an inherent principle to which
that judge, that lawyer, and those jury-women, are all doing violence
to-day—a light electric chain circling the fairy ring, which Heaven
intended should be our sphere; a chain which makes its subtle fluid tell
on every nerve, when it is handled too rudely, and which, when
broken—oh, wo to those who have the strength or daring to break it!”

“Heresy! rank heresy! Why, you would be hooted at, mobbed in the
streets, if you were heard to avow such sentiments.”

“Ay, I know it. That is one of our _rights_, secured to us by the
Reform—the right to be mobbed—and behold, another!”

The lungs of the _lawyeress_ had been exerted until her voice had broken
and sunk into a hoarse whisper. “Louder!” “Louder!” “Louder!” came the
cries from every part of the court-room. “Order!” “Order!” “Order!” rung
out the echo. The court put on all its dignity, and looked very
portentous; the constables exerted themselves manfully (_womanfully_;)
the _lawyeress_ raised a last screech, and the crowd hissed and groaned.

“Carry her out! carry her out! she has swooned!” shouted several voices;
and an old seaman at my elbow, gave, with a round oath, his opinion that
it was “only a woman’s trick to steer clear of the breakers.” He added a
grumbling word or two about the doings of a certain _captainess_ in a
late storm; but at this moment I caught a glimpse of the face of the
lady-lawyer as she was borne past me; I started with surprise, and
awoke. That I should have such a vision of _my cousin_ “_’Bel_!” Well,

“If it comes three times, I thought, I’ll take it for a sign.” Oh! if it
should!

                 *        *        *        *        *



                “ARE THEY NOT ALL MINISTERING SPIRITS?”


                          BY S. DRYDEN PHELPS.


    ’Tis sweet to think that spirits pure and holy,
      Are often hovering round the pilgrim here,
    To banish thoughts of grief and melancholy,
      And bid the trembling heart forget to fear.

    Bright angel forms, on soft and airy pinions,
      Like carrier birds, the messengers of love,
    Leave the fair precincts of the blest dominions,
      With choicest favors from the world above.

    They come, and give to solitude its pleasures,
      And throw a hallowed charm around the heart;
    Bear up the thoughts to heaven’s unfading treasures,
      Where kindred spirits meet no more to part.

    They come, from those celestial hills descending,
      Sent by the bounteous Ruler of the skies;
    We feel their presence with our spirits blending,
      When evening orisons to heaven arise.

    They come, when o’er the sorrowing heart is stealing
      The wasting blight of earth’s consuming wo;
    They come, a ray of heavenly light revealing,
      Amidst the darkness of our path below.

    They come to dry the mourner’s fount of sadness,
      To pour their blessings on the drooping head;
    And bid the soul awake to hope and gladness,
      Along the vistas of the future spread.

    The mother, whose beloved infant slumbers,
      Cold, in the silent chamber of the tomb,
    Oft hears its pleasing voice, like seraph’s numbers,
      Fall on her ear amidst surrounding gloom.

    The lonely orphan, by the world forsaken,
      Oft seems the kindness of the dead to share;
    And feels a thrill of new-born joy awaken,
      As if embraced with fond, parental care.

    The saddened lover, and the joyless maiden,
      Stript of their cherished ones by death’s chill hand,
    Commune with their returning spirits, laden
      With love undying from the glorious land.

    Joy for the mission of those guileless creatures—
      That Heaven to us such guardians should send;
    Oh, wear they not the well-remembered features
      Of many an early loved and long lost friend?

    Ye sainted forms of dearest ones departed,
      Methinks I hear your music in the breeze;
    And oft, ’mid scenes of sadness, lonely-hearted,
      My spirit’s eye your joyful presence sees.

    Still, still around my chequered pathway hover—
      ’Tis sweet to hold communion with the pure;
    And welcome me at last, when life is over,
      Where love and joy eternal shall endure!

                 *        *        *        *        *



                     GAME-BIRDS OF AMERICA.—NO. VI.


[Illustration]


                VELVET DUCK. (_Oidemia fusca._ Fleming.)

Another of the family of the Anatidæ, common to the waters of the
Chesapeake, is the Velvet Duck. This species, like the Scoter Duck, with
which it is often confounded, feeds entirely upon shell-fish, which it
procures by diving. Though the flesh of the old birds has a rank, fishy
flavor, they are much sought after in some parts of the country; and the
young birds, whose flesh affords better eating, meet with a ready sale
in our markets. The Velvet Duck is distinguished from the other dark
species of the sub-genus Oidemia, by the name of the White-winged Coot.
The Velvet Duck is nearly related to the Black, or Surf Duck, which
breeds along the shores of Hudson’s Bay, and extends its migrations as
far south as Florida. Its flesh is remarkably red and dark when cooked,
is fishy, and has little to recommend it; the young birds are better
flavored, but the whole are of little consequence as game. Commonly
associated with the Velvet Duck is another kindred species, the Scoter.
They are common in the bay and sounds near New York, and in the
Chesapeake. Like the American Scoter and the Velvet Duck, their flesh
has a rank and oily taste—the young birds only being considered
palatable by epicures. All these fishy flavored birds, in the times when
the use of flesh was prohibited with great strictness during Lent, were
decided by the ecclesiastical authorities to be a sort of fish which
might be eaten with impunity. They all have the bill broad and gibbous
above the nostrils; its margins dilated; camelliform teeth, coarse; the
nostrils large and elevated, and nearly in the middle of the bill; the
tail numbers fourteen feathers. The prevailing color of the plumage is
black in the males, in the females brown. They do not come much upon the
fresh waters, but keep the shores of the sea, and find great part of
their food by diving. Their breeding places are not much known, but it
is supposed that they resort far to the northward. Most of them are
common to the northern parts of both hemispheres.


           THE SUMMER OR WOOD DUCK. (_Anas Sponsa._ Wilson.)

Linnæus has justly conferred upon this most beautiful of all the species
of Duck the name of _Sponsa_, or the Bride. The name of Summer Duck it
has derived from the circumstance of its remaining with us all the
summer; and its habit of breeding in hollow trees, has gained for it the
appellation of Wood Duck. It rarely visits the sea-shore, or salt
marshes; its favorite haunts being the solitary, deep, and muddy creeks,
ponds, and mill-dams of the interior, making its nest in old trees that
overhang the water, and carrying its young to the ground in its bill.
The food of this duck consists principally of acorns, seeds of the wild
oats, and insects. Their flesh is inferior to that of the Blue-Winged
Teal; and they are not uncommon in the market of Philadelphia. Latham
says that they are often kept in European Menageries, and will breed
there. Wilson, from whose account we have extracted the above
statements, furnishes a description of the plumage of this duck, which
we subjoin, as it is so exceedingly accurate as not to admit of any
improvement. The Wood Duck is nineteen inches in length, and two feet
four in extent; bill red, margined with black; a spot of black lies
between the nostrils, reaching nearly to the tip, which is also of the
same color, and furnished with a large hooked nail; irides, orange red;
front crown, and pendent crest, rich glossy bronze green, ending in
violet, elegantly marked with a line of pure white running from upper
mandible over the eye, and with another band of white proceeding from
behind the eye, both mingling their long, pendent plumes with the green
and violet ones, producing a rich effect; cheeks and sides of the upper
neck, violet; chin, throat, and collar round the neck, pure white,
curving up in the form of a crescent nearly to the posterior part of the
eye; the white collar is bounded below with black; breast, dark violet
brown, marked on the fore part with minute triangular spots of white,
increasing in size until they spread into the white of the belly; each
side of the breast is bounded by a large crescent, and again by a
broader one of deep black; sides under the wings thickly and beautifully
marked with fine undulating parallel lines of black, on a ground of
yellowish-drab; the flanks are ornamented with broad alternate
semicircular bands of black and white; sides of the vent rich, light
violet; tail-coverts, long, of a hair-like texture at the sides, over
which they descend, and of a deep black, glossed with green; back,
dusky-bronze, reflecting green; scapulars, black; tail tapering, dark,
glossy-green above, below, dusky; primaries, dusky, silvery-hoary
without, tipped with violet blue; secondaries, greenish-blue, tipped
with white; wing-coverts, violet blue, tipped with black; vent, dusky;
legs and feet, yellowish-red; claws, strong and hooked.

[Illustration]


                AMERICAN TEAL. (_Anas Crecca._ Wilson.)

The Green-Winged, or American Teal, (_Anas Crecca, Wilson_,) has
received the name of American Teal from the naturalists of Europe, as
being a distinct species from their own, an error exposed in a
satisfactory manner by Wilson. Like the Summer Duck, it prefers fresh
water, and frequents ponds, marshes, and the reedy shores of creeks and
rivers. It is very abundant among the rice plantations of the Southern
States; and its flesh is accounted excellent food. It is said to breed
in Hudson’s Bay, and to have from five to seven young at a time. It is
known, according to Latham and Bewick, to build in France and England,
but, so far as we know, it does not breed in the United States. The
Common Teal is so highly esteemed in England as to bring five shillings
a pound in the London market. We believe that as our sportsmen become in
a greater degree scientific naturalists, an advance which cannot be much
longer delayed in this progressive age, the highly interesting class of
the Anatidæ will become accurately known, the concealment with which it
has hitherto been suffered to cloak its habits and its history, will be
torn away, and the artifices of the naturalists exposed, who are far too
prone, when unable to point out the proper locality of any duck, at any
season, to “send it to Siberia,” and put it into sort of Arctic
parchment. Thus with many of the ducks, but of those that have been said
to rear their broods in the inhospitable climes of the north, very many
have never been seen there; and we are greatly inclined to believe that
many described as winter visitants are resident birds, passing the
summer dispersedly, and in places where they have but little chance of
being seen. After the pairing time, the males are peculiarly retired and
silent; and the close sitting females do not come abroad until they are
able to launch their young ducklings upon that element of which they are
in future to be so much the ornament.

                 *        *        *        *        *



                          REVIEW OF NEW BOOKS.


    _The Life of Napoleon Buonaparte. By William Hazlitt. New York:
    Wiley & Putnam. 6 Parts, 12mo._

Hazlitt never mistook his powers more than when he aspired to write
history and biography. As a critic and essayist his brilliancy and
acuteness compensate, in a considerable degree, for his bitterness and
prejudice; but as a historian, his faults of mind and disposition are
too glaringly evident to pass without rebuke. He could not have selected
a subject where his unfitness was more apparent than that of Napoleon.
His admiration of the “child and champion of the Revolution,” and his
hatred of the established governments of Europe, amounted to a disease.
His production, therefore, though containing many striking thoughts, and
some splendid composition, reads more like a vigorous party pamphlet
than an impartial history. Every thing is seen through a distorting
medium of rage and prejudice. The political sins of the monarchs he
condemns and inveighs against, were of the same kind which Napoleon
himself had no scruple in committing, and we see no reason why an
usurper of superior power and abilities, should be puffed for the same
crimes for which his adversaries are hooted at. Falsehood and perfidy
should be especially branded when they are committed by apostate
patriots, and champions of the rights of man. It is well known that
Napoleon, among the many “infirmities” of his genius, was one of the
greatest liars that ever existed. He not only disregarded truth, but had
a contempt for it. One would suppose that such a quality as this ought
to give a slightly dark shade to his character, even as delineated by a
servile biographer. But Hazlitt’s faith in his hero is proof against all
sense and propriety; and, in the name of democracy, he baptizes the most
tyrannical and infamous acts committed by the most despotic of modern
sovereigns.

This book resembles Carlyle’s Cromwell in its object—and its object is
detestable. If history is to be written to any good purpose, the
historian must not adopt the passions of the time he describes as the
principles by which he judges of persons and events. History, written on
the model of Hazlitt or Carlyle, would become more corrupting than the
most licentious novels. Men of great abilities, loaded though they be
with offences against human nature, would be held up as appropriate
examples; and every ambitious politician would be practically told, that
the way to win the gratitude of posterity was to trample on the rights
of the governed, and violate every principle of legislation and morals.
No historian of any acuteness can be at a loss for plausible excuses for
crimes if his love for the criminal exceeds his love for justice and
truth. The course by which Carlyle makes Cromwell out the wisest and
most religious of men, and reconciles morality with massacre, might be
advantageously employed to extenuate the offences of many an unfortunate
gentleman whom society exhibits on a gallows, or employs in the business
of pounding stone in its prisons. There are already too many temptations
in the way of selfish ambition to make it desirable that historians
should add another.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _American Comedies. By James K. Paulding and William Irving
    Paulding. Phila.: Carey & Hart. 1 vol. 12mo._

This volume contains four comedies, the first of which, entitled “The
Bucktails, or Americans in England,” is the production of James K.
Paulding, and the remaining three of W. I. Paulding, a young man
scarcely one-and-twenty. “The Bucktails” was written shortly after the
last war with England. The sentiment of the play, and a good portion of
the humor, are somewhat old. The ignorance of the English characters is
somewhat overcharged, and the nationality of the American too
obtrusively impertinent. The fun of the piece is apt to run either into
mere caricature or jokes “which no young lady should read.” There is,
however, with many defects in plot and characterization, considerable
merit in the dialogue, which is sharp, brisk, and terse, and explodes at
times, like a series of percussion caps. The last act is very clumsy,
and the patches of blank verse put into the mouths of Frank and Jane,
positively ridiculous. We are surprised that Mr. Paulding did not
re-write the play, and prune it of many obvious absurdities. It contains
a great deal that is excellent.

The remaining comedies are “The Noble Exile,” “Madmen All,” and
“Antipathies, or The Enthusiasts by the Ears.” They are the production
of a young man of evident talent, and give promise of much excellence in
the department of literature to which he has devoted his powers; but
they are crude in their present shape, and many of the faults and
follies they satirize have been repeatedly ridiculed in the same way. We
should judge, also, that the writer’s favorite author was Ben Jonson—a
bad model, though a man of great talents and remarkable character. The
most laughable piece of comic writing in the plays, is the second scene
in the second act of Madmen All, in which Phil, assuming the character
of a Vicksburg “screamer,” bamboozles an Englishman with stories of the
character and manners of the South and West. Phil is asked what were his
sensations on being blown up in a Mississippi steamer, and he
replies—“Why, sir, it is the pleasantest and most elevating feeling you
can imagine. May I be scalped, sir, if it is not just like being kicked
into chaos. No man, sir, knows what the sublimity of life is until he
has had a biler burst under him.” The whole scene is exceedingly
spirited and effective. Indeed, Mr. Paulding wants but culture and
practice to make a good dramatist. The present volume is rather an
indication than an exponent of his capacity. He does individual scenes
well, and here and there hits off a character happily; but he does not
so combine his plot and personages as to produce an artistical effect
upon the mind.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _History of the Roman Republic. By J. Michelet. Translated by
    William Hazlitt. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 12mo._

In this work Michelet displays his usual qualities of style, with,
perhaps, more condensation of remark and peremptoriness of judgment. He
never writes without having studied his subject thoroughly, and he seems
to conceive that this elaborate preparation qualifies him to decide all
debateable points. His intellect has some vices of system, and he is too
apt to run his facts into the forms of his theories, and generalize
where he ought to narrate. He states an event in language which also
contains an opinion of the event. He also bothers the unlearned reader
by narrating occasionally by allusion and implication, and thus is
condensed at the expense of simplicity and clearness. The present work,
though very able and interesting, requires a previous knowledge of Roman
history to be appreciated, as much almost as Carlyle’s “French
Revolution” demands a previous acquaintance with French history. It is
rather an addition to the other histories of the republic, by a man of
original and splendid powers, than a work embodying a complete history
in itself.

Michelet’s power of picturesque description and delineation of
character, and his faculty of applying principles to events, are
displayed prominently in this work. His sympathy with the Roman people
and their objects, is also strikingly manifested. Nothing but an
extended review of the book could do justice to its mingled wisdom and
extravagance. The chief defect in this, as in every work of the author,
is the obtrusion of his own peculiar personality into every picture and
reflection. We cannot get a view of Hannibal, Scipio, Cæsar, Brutus, or
Anthony, without seeing Michelet by his side, doing the honors of
introduction, and warning us that his is the only shop where the true
article may be obtained.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _Spaniards and their Country. By Richard Ford. Part 2. New York:
    Wiley & Putnam._

The second portion of this work is as amusing as the first. It does not
give us a high opinion of the author, if we except the gratitude we
naturally feel to a person who sacrifices his personal dignity for the
pleasure of his reader. The book is flippant, light-hearted, and often
shallow, with the egotism and arrogance of the Englishman, modified by
the graceful impudence of the Parisian; but it is singularly acute in
the detection of the qualities which immediately underlie the
superficies of national character, and singularly brilliant in style and
description. Without any very sparkling passages, its tone of pleasantry
is uniformly sustained, and draws the reader on to the conclusion by the
fascination of its volatile spirit. The subject is comparatively new,
and rich in materials of interest. These advantages the author has
skillfully improved, and made a book worth a hundred “Tours in Spain,”
written by gentlemen with a philosophical tone of mind. There is a
spirit of enjoyment in the book which is communicated to the mind of the
reader. As the author, good-naturedly, takes the world as it is, the
reader is content to take him as he is; and thus his coxcombry excites
no anger, and his pleasantry is left to operate undisturbed.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _Hyperion. By H. W. Longfellow. Fourth Edition. Boston: Wm. D.
    Ticknor & Co. 1 vol. 12mo._

This is an elegant and tasteful edition of an exquisite book. It has
been deservedly the most successful of the author’s prose compositions.
Indeed, as a proof of the fertility of Longfellow’s imagination, the
delicacy and sweetness of his sentiment, and his general poetic view of
nature and life, we should appeal to this romance as readily as to his
poems. It is full of delicious imagery, beautiful description, and
striking thoughts, and the style is richly sensuous and musical. The
strain of sentiment running through the book, however, is not strong and
bracing enough for our climate. Its general tone is too much that of a
sad sweetness, though passages are replete with a firmer and sterner
feeling. It reminds one more of Fletcher than Milton; of the “Faithful
Shepherdess” than of “Comus.” The leading characteristic of Longfellow’s
mind is that peculiar blending of sensation with imagination, commonly
called sensuousness—a characteristic of all poetic genius, but which is
apt to bewitch the soul with a sense of the beauty of things, to the
forgetfulness of their other qualities and relations, and by this
forgetfulness to lead the mind away from the contemplation of the
highest intellectual and moral beauty. “Hyperion,” however, ranks among
the first books of its kind in English letters, and might be
appropriately entitled, “Prose, by a Poet.”

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _Chefs-d’Œuvre Dramatiques de la Langue Française. Par A. G.
    Collot. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 12mo._

This is an excellent French Reader, worth a thousand of the common
collections going under the name. It contains whole dramas by Corneille,
Racine, Voltaire, Molière, Piron, Scribe, and Berquin, carefully edited,
with explanations to facilitate the progress of the student. Such a work
has long been wanted. It enables the student to study the French
language as used by some of the master-spirits among Frenchmen. As a
collection of five dramas, also, it will be interesting to many who
understand the language, but are unable to purchase the whole works of
the authors from whom the plays are selected.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _Probabilities: An Aid to Faith. By the Author of “Proverbial
    Philosophy.” New York: Wiley & Putnam._

Tupper seems to have been a little crazed by his popularity, and to have
obtained the idea that he was a great philosopher. The result of this
self-deceit is contained in the present little book. We confess we have
been unable to wade through it. To compel a critic to read a series of
works like this, would drive him into the insane hospital in a month.
One of the probabilities of Tupper is, that the star Acyone, which Dr.
Madier considers the central sun of the systems of stars known to us, is
the place of the Christian Heaven, and that our moon is Hell. This may
be classed under those probabilities which are important, if true. To
use an austere remark of Dr. Johnson, the elaborate consideration of all
the trash in this volume, would be to “waste criticism on unresisting
imbecility.”

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _The Amenities of Literature, consisting of Sketches and
    Characters of English Literature. By J. D’Israeli. New York:
    Harper & Brothers. 2 vols. 12mo._

This is the fourth edition of a work peculiarly valuable to the student
of English literature. It consists of original investigations into the
mines of English letters, with some curious speculations grounded upon
the results. D’Israeli, however, with all his merit as a literary
antiquary, will never be an interesting author. His works are
labor-saving machines to all critics and miscellaneous writers, and will
always be read; but they are incurably dull. It is fortunate that he did
not write a history of English literature. There is no juice in the man.
The dust of old folios has entered into his soul, and given an arid
character to every opinion and expression. We say this with many twinges
of conscience, for he has spent his life in researches which have saved
better writers years of toilsome investigation.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _Froissart Ballads. By Philip Pendleton Cooke. Phila.: Carey &
    Hart._

This is one of the most delightful volumes which we have met with for
many a day. We have long known and admired the fugitive poems of Mr.
Cooke, and now heartily welcome our old favorites, with their new
companions, in the beautiful dress which the publishers have given them.
In the “Proem To Emily” there is an exquisite freshness which delights
us exceedingly. We hardly know how to characterize the peculiar beauty
of its spirit; but it seems, while reading it, as if we were dreaming in
the delicious shade of quiet trees, and looking down upon golden
valleys, wherein pass to and fro the valiant knights, stately dames, and
lovely maids of the misty days of chivalry. So it _seems_ while perusing
the proem, but in the “Master of Bolton,” we have the reality, and it no
longer seems. This poem, while being in Mr. Cooke’s peculiar and
happiest vein, has about it a dash, which strikes us as Scott-like, and
a spice of the “Christabel;” not in a degree, however, which could be
said to amount to imitation, but evincing rather, a mind sensitive to
the same romantic impressions. What could be more beautiful and graphic
than the following characteristic sketch—or rather let us say picture,
which we extract from the “Master of Bolton?”

  “All heard a merry signal cry,
  And a swift heron, from a marsh,
  Mounted with sudden scream, and harsh,
  Beating the air in wild alarm.
  Then hawks were cast from many an arm;
  And it was a gallant sight to see
  The fleet birds tower so valiantly,
  Each for the vanguard challenging,
  But none went forth so swift of wing—
  Mounted so boldly on the wind,
  As the brave bird of Jocelind.

  With winnow and soar he won the height
  At point above the quarry’s flight,
  And balanced in air, and made his stoop;
  But the swift heron shunned the swoop,
  And, wheeling aside, a moment stayed,
  Just over the gazing cavalcade;
  A wild-eyed, terror-stricken bird
  The Kentish hawk had canceliered,
  But now drove back upon his prey,
  Ire-whetted for the fresh assay.
  The lady’s heart with pity filled,
  The quarry’s mortal dread to see,
  And in her gentleness she willed
  To ward its dire extremity;
  With uplift hands and eager eyes,
  And cheeks bereft of their rosy dyes,
  ‘Gawen, my Gawen! come back,’ she cried,
  The hawk, true vassal, turned aside,
  Doubtful, upon his pinions wide,
  Then, like a servant of a charm,
  Sank to his perch on the lady’s arm,
  The damsel in her loveliness,
  Made lovelier by that kind distress,
  Repaid the bold bird’s loyalty
  With gentleness of hand and eye.
  That silver call, so sweet to hear,
  When will it die on the master’s ear?
  ‘My Gawen—come back!’ the truth to say,
  He pondered the words for many a day.”

It must be remembered that the bird had been named in honor of his
former owner, the Master of Bolton, and this was he

  “Who pondered the words for many a day.”

Mark, too, a little further on, how gloriously our author reproduces the
iron-rattle and fiery jostle of the tourney:

  “Into the lists Sir Gawen rides,
   Manful upon his charger black,”

to break a lance for his lady’s sake.

  “At signal of a bugle blast—
    Sharp and sudden sound,
  The knights set forward, fiery fast,
    And met in middle ground;
  Met with stern shock of man and horse,
    And din of crashing spears;
  But neither champion won the course,
    They parted there like peers.
  Again! again! and respite none
    Will not Lord Siampi yield,
  Swift he demands, with haughty tone,
    Renewal of the field!
  Whereto, Sir Gawen urged to speak,
    Answers as haughtily,
  ‘By God! sir knight, I nothing seek
    So much as strife with thee.’
  Thus spake he, and his visor closed,
    As to his post he passed;
  Again the armed men opposed
    Await the signal blast!
  Sudden it came, with hearts of flame,
    The champions, at the sound,
  Drove each his steed at furious speed,
    And met in middle ground.
  The Frankish champion struck amain—
    Struck with a force so dire—
  On Gawen’s helmet, that his brain
    Streamed with a flood of fire.
  But Gawen smote the knight of France,
    Full on his sturdy breast,
  And driven, perforce, the trusty lance
    Through shield and corselet prest—
  Crashing through steel, the weapon good,
    Lord Siampi’s bosom found,
  Nor broke until the sudden blood
    Gushed darkly from the wound.
  Manful against the lance’s force
    Lord Siampi bore him well,
  And passed Sir Gawen in the course,
    All upright in his selle—
  But with the gallop of his horse,
    He reeled—and swayed—and fell!”

“The Mountains,” “Florence Vane,” the poem of “The Bards,” and “Young
Rosalie Lee,” are exquisite gems. Altogether, this volume of “Froissart
Ballads, and Other Poems,” fully deserves the hearty reception, which we
are glad to see so universally extended to it by the press.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _A System of Intellectual Philosophy. By Rev. Asa Mahan. Second
    Edition. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 12mo._

This work is written by one who has evidently studied intellectual
philosophy with all the ardor of a lover. The book presents, in a
compact form, a system of metaphysics, whose basis is spiritualism. The
author acknowledges his indebtedness to Coleridge, Kant, and Cousin. The
leading ideas of these philosophers frequently appear in the work. We
are aware of no book which gives in a small space, so much that is
valuable to the student and thinker. We have been particularly pleased
with the analysis of Imagination and Fancy, and the accounts of the
various German systems of metaphysics.

                 *        *        *        *        *

    _An Exposition of the Apocalypse. By David N. Lord. New York:
    Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 8vo._

This work is valuable to all theologians, and also to all who desire
light on the dark topics it discusses. It is very able, and does honor
to the author’s learning and ingenuity. We especially admire the courage
with which Mr. Lord grapples with the difficulties of his subject. Such
a work must have been the result of the patient toil of many years.

                 *        *        *        *        *

Transcriber’s Notes:

Table of Contents has been added for reader convenience. Archaic
spellings and hyphenation have been retained. Punctuation has been
corrected without note. Other errors have been corrected as noted below.
For illustrations, some caption text may be missing or incomplete due to
condition of the originals available for preparation of the eBook. A
cover has been created for this eBook and is placed in the public
domain.

page 266, Frith about noon, ==> Firth about noon,
page 267, and unforseen event. ==> and unforeseen event.
page 270, posssessed of an art, ==> possessed of an art,
page 274, the _attacheé_, or the financier. ==> the _attaché_, or the
  financier.
page 275, the rich farmers’s house, ==> the rich farmer’s house,
page 277, they eat enough, ==> they ate enough,
page 279, enough; and and if it’s ==> enough; and if it’s
page 281, The blackberrys grow by ==> The blackberries grow by
page 281, And its grown to a ==> And it’s grown to a
page 282, baldric and the feather ==> baldrick and the feather
page 284, boddice of her dark ==> bodice of her dark
page 289, supper-bell rung, which ==> supper-bell rang, which
page 290, she answerd, “a mere ==> she answered, “a mere
page 296, assembled at Beverley ==> assembled at Beverly
page 296, relatives of the Beverly’s, ==> relatives of the Beverlys,
page 296, I am _une de trop_. ==> I am _un de trop_.
page 297, Frank felt irresistably ==> Frank felt irresistibly
page 297, sung well. Frank ==> sang well. Frank
page 297, Never sung so sweet ==> Never sang so sweet
page 300, it be Byron’s, Shelly’s, ==> it be Byron’s, Shelley’s,
page 301, captal willian, I call ==> capital willian, I call
page 303, his own arrangemants. He ==> his own arrangements. He
page 317, under the _old regimé_ ==> under the _old régime_
page 317, gingling of a bell ==> jingling of a bell
page 319, raised a last screach, ==> raised a last screech,

[End of Graham's Magazine, Vol. XXX, No. 5, May 1847]





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