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Title: Graham's Magazine Vol XXXIV No. 2 February 1849

Date of first publication: 1849

Author: George Rex Graham (1813-1894)

Date first posted: Sep. 10, 2014

Date last updated: Sep. 10, 2014

Faded Page eBook #20140916

This ebook was produced by: Mardi Desjardins & the online Distributed Proofreaders Canada team at http://www.pgdpcanada.net

Drawn and Engraved by W. E. Tucker
Engraved expressly for Graham’s Magazine

Whilst now with rapture burning,

Thy smiles and sighs returning,

Say wilt thou love be mine?

See—the songsters’ wings are spreading,

Each grove and arbour threading,

To seek their Valentine.


Then while all hearts are striving,

And at Love’s Arts conniving,

Send offerings to his shrine.

May we, our pledge renewing,

Our patrons favor wooing,

Prove their true Valentine.


Vol. XXXIV.      FEBRUARY, 1849.      No. 2.

Table of Contents

The Young Lawyer’s First Case

The World


The Ennuyee

The Man in the Moon

The Mirror of Life

To the Thames, At Norwich, Conn.

The Song of the Axe

The Wager of Battle


St. Valentine’s Day

The Past

A Song

A Recollection of Mendelssohn

Jasper Leech

My Bird Has Flown

Lessons in German

The Phantasmagoria

The Beating of the Heart

Doctor Sian Seng

The Highland Laddie’s Farewell

A Twilight Lay

The Chamber of Life and Death


Eleonore Eboli

History of the Costume of Men

Wild-Birds of America

The Old Year and the New

The Lost Notes

An Hour Among the Dead

Gems From Late Readings

Review of New Books

Editor’s Table

The Bells of Ostend

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


Vol. XXXIV.      PHILADELPHIA, FEBRUARY, 1849.      No. 2.






In one of those long, low, one-story, unpainted houses which succeeded the log-houses in Vermont as the second generation of human habitations, lay a sick woman. She knew, and all her friends knew, that her days were numbered, and that when she left that room it would be in her winding-sheet for the grave. Yet her face and her spirit were calm, and the tones of her voice, like those of the dying swan, were sweeter than those of life. She had taken an affectionate leave of all her children, in faith and hope, save one—her eldest son—a mother’s boy and a mother’s pride. By great economy and unwearied industry this son had been sent to college. He was a mild, inoffensive, pale-faced one; but the bright eye did not belie the spirit that dwelt in a casket so frail. He had been sent for, but did not reach home till the day before his mother’s death. As soon as she knew of his coming, she immediately had him called to her room, and left alone with her. Long and tearful was their conversation. Sweet and tender was this last interview between a mother and son who had never lacked any degree of confidence on either side.

“You know, my son, that it has always been my most earnest wish and prayer that you should be a preacher of the gospel, and thus a benefactor to the souls of men. In choosing the law, you are aware, you have greatly disappointed these hopes.”

“I know it, dear mother; and I have done it, not because I like the law so much, but because I dare not undertake a work so sacred as the ministry, conscious as I am that I am not qualified in mind, or body, or spirit, for the work. If I dared do it, for your sake, if for no other reason, I would do it.”

“In God’s time, my dear son, in God’s time, I trust you will. I neither urge it, nor blame you. But promise me now, that you will never undertake any cause which you think is unjust, and that you will never aid in screening wrong from coming to light and punishment.”

The son said something about every man’s having the right to have his case presented in the best light he could.

“I know what you mean,” said she; “but I know that if a man has violated the laws of God and man, he has no moral right to be shielded from punishment. If he has confessions and explanations to offer, it is well. But for you to take his side, and for money, to shield him from the laws, seems to me no better than if, for money, you concealed him from the officers of justice, under the plea that every man had a right to get clear of the law if he could. But I am weak and cannot talk, my son; and yet if you will give me the solemn promise, it seems as if I should die easier. But you must do as you think best.”

The young man bent over his dying mother, and with much emotion, gave her the solemn promise which she desired. Tender was the last kiss she gave him, warm the thanks which she expressed, and sweet the smile which she wore, and which was left on her countenance after her spirit had gone up to meet the smiles of the Redeemer.

Some months after the death of his mother, the young man left the shadows of the Green Mountains, and toward a more sunny region, in a large and thrifty village, he opened his office; the sign gave his name, and under it, the words, “Attorney at Law.” There he was found early and late, his office clean and neat, and his few books studied over and over again, but no business. The first fee which he took was for writing a short letter for his black wood-sawyer, and for that he conscientiously charged only a single sixpence! People spoke well of him, and admired the young man, but still no business came. After waiting till “hope deferred made the heart sick,” one bright morning a coarse-looking, knock-down sort of a young man was seen making toward the office. How the heart of the young lawyer bounded at the sight of his first client! 86 What success, and cases, and fees danced in the vision in a moment!

“Are you the lawyer?” said the man, hastily taking off his hat.

“Yes, sir, that’s my business. What can I do for you?”

“Why, something of a job, I reckon. The fact is I have got into a little trouble, and want a bit of help.” And he took out a five dollar bill, and laid it on the table. The young lawyer made no motion toward taking it.

“Why don’t you take it?” said he. “I don’t call it pay, but to begin with—a kind of wedge—what do you call it?”

“Retention-fee, I presume you mean.”

“Just so, and by your taking it, you are my lawyer. So take it.”

“Not quite so fast, if you please. State your case, and then I will tell you whether or not I take the retention-fee.”

The coarse fellow stared.

“Why, mister, the case is simply this. Last spring I was doing a little business by way of selling meat. So I bought a yoke of oxen of old Maj. Farnsworth. I was to have them for one hundred dollars.”

“Very well—what became of the oxen?”

“Butchered and sold out, to be sure.”

“By you?”


“Well, where’s the trouble?”

“Why, they say, that as I only gave my note for them, I need not pay it, and I want you to help me to get clear of it.”

“How do you expect me to do it?”

“Plain as day, man; just say, gentlemen of the jury, this young man was not of age when he gave Maj. Farnsworth the note, and therefore, in law, the note is good for nothing—that’s all!”

“And was it really so?”


“How came Maj. Farnsworth to let you have the oxen?”

“Oh, the godly old man never suspected that I was under age.”

“What did you get for the oxen in selling them out?”

“Why, somewhere between one hundred and thirty and one hundred and forty dollars—they were noble fellows!”

“And so you want me to help you cheat that honest old man out of those oxen, simply because the law, this human imperfection, gives you the opportunity to do it! No, sir; put up your retention-fee. I promised my dying mother never to do such a thing, and I will starve first. And as for you—if I wanted to help you to go to the state’s prison, I could take no course so sure as to do what you offer to pay me for doing. And, depend upon it, the lawyer who does help you, will be your worst enemy. Plead minority! No; go, sir, and pay for your oxen honestly and live and act on the principle, that let what will come, you will be an honest man.”

The coarse young man snatched up his bill, and muttering something about seeing Squire Snapall, left the office.

So he lost his first fee and his first case. He felt poor and discouraged, when left alone in the office; but he felt that he had done right. His mother’s voice seemed to whisper, “Right, my son, right.” The next day he was in old Maj. Farnsworth’s, and saw a pile of bills lying upon the table. The good old man said he had just received them for a debt which he expected to lose, but a kind Providence had interposed in his behalf. The young lawyer said nothing, but his mother’s voice seemed to come again, “Right, my son, right.”

Some days after this a man called in the evening, and asked the young man to defend him in a trial just coming on.

“What is your case?”

“They accuse me of stealing a bee-hive.”

“A bee-hive!—surely that could not be worth much!”

“No, but the bees and the honey were in it.”

“Then you really did steal it?”

“Squire are you alone here—nobody to hear?”

“I am all alone.”

“Are you bound by oath to keep the secrets of your clients?”

“Certainly I am.”

“Well, then, ’twixt you and me, I did have a dab at that honey. There was more than seventy pounds! But you can clear me.”

“How can I?”

“Why, Ned Hazen has agreed to swear that I was with him fishing at Squanicook Pond that night.”

“So, by perjury, you hope to escape punishment. What can you afford to pay a lawyer who will do his best?”

The man took out twenty dollars. It was a great temptation. The young lawyer staggered for a moment—but only for a moment.

“No, sir, I will not undertake your case. I will not try to shield a man whom I know to be a villain from the punishment which he deserves. I will starve first.”

The man with an oath bolted out of the office, and made his way to Snapall’s office. The poor lawyer sat down alone, and could have cried. But a few dollars were left to him in the world, and what to do when they were gone, he knew not. In a few moments the flush and burning of the face was gone, as if he had been fanned by the wings of angels, and again he heard his own mother’s voice, “Right, my son, right.”

Days and even weeks passed away, and no new client made his appearance. The story of his having refused to take fees and defend his clients got abroad, and many were the gibes concerning his folly. Lawyer Snapall declared that such weakness would ruin any man. The multitude went against the young advocate. But a few noted and remembered it in his favor.

On entering his office one afternoon, the young man found a note lying on his table. It read thus,

“Mrs. Henshaw’s compliments to Mr. Loudon, 87 and requests, if it be not too much trouble, that he would call on her at his earliest convenience, as she wishes to consult him professionally, and with as much privacy as may be.

Rose Cottage, June 25th.

How his hand trembled while he read the note. It might lead to business—it might be the first fruits of an honorable life. But who is Mrs. Henshaw? He only knew that a friend by that name, a widow lady, had lately arrived on a visit to the family who resided in that cottage. “At his earliest convenience.” If he should go at once, would it not look as if he were at perfect leisure? If he delayed, would it not be a dishonesty which he had vowed never to practice? He whistled a moment, took up his hat, and went toward “Rose Cottage.” On reaching the house, he was received by a young lady of modest, yet easy manner. He inquired for Mrs. Henshaw, and the young lady said,

“My mother is not well, but I will call her. Shall I carry your name, sir?”

“Loudon, if you please.”

The young lady cast a searching, surprised look at him, and left the room. In a few moments the mother, a graceful, well-bred lady of about forty, entered the room. She had a mild; sweet face, and a look that brought his own mother so vividly to mind, that the tears almost started in his eyes. For some reason, Mrs. Henshaw appeared embarrassed.

“It is Mr. Loudon, the lawyer, I suppose,” said she.

“At your service, madam.”

“Is there any other gentleman at the Bar of your name, sir?”

“None that I know of. In what way can you command my services, madam?”

The lady colored. “I am afraid, sir, there is some mistake. I need a lawyer to look at a difficult case, a man of principle, whom I can trust. You were mentioned to me—but—I expected to see an older man.”

“If you will admit me,” said Loudon, who began to grow nervous in his turn, “so far into your confidence as to state the case, I think I can promise not to do any hurt, even if I do no good. And if on the whole, you think it best to commit it to older and abler hands, I will charge you nothing and engage not to be offended.”

The mother looked at the daughter, and saw on her face the look of confidence and hope.

The whole afternoon was spent in going over the case, examining papers, and the like. As they went along, Loudon took notes and memoranda with his pencil.

“He will never do,” thought Mrs. Henshaw. “He takes every thing for granted and unquestioned; and though I don’t design to mislead him, yet it seems to me, as if he would take the moon to be green cheese, were I to tell him so. He will never do;” and she felt that she had wasted her time and strength. How great then was her surprise when Loudon pushed aside the bundles of papers, and looking at his notes, again went over the whole ground, sifting and scanning every point, weighing every circumstance, pointing out the weak places, tearing and throwing off the rubbish, discarding what was irrelevant, and placing the whole affair in a light more luminous and clear than even she had ever seen it before. Her color came and went as her hopes rose and fell. After he had laid it open to her, he added, with unconscious dignity,

“Mrs. Henshaw, I think yours is a cause of right and justice. Even if there should be a failure to convince a jury so that law would decide in your favor, there are so many circumstantial proofs, that I have no doubt that justice will be with you. If you please to entrust it to me, I will do the best I can, and am quite sure I shall work harder than if I were on the opposite side.”

“What do you say, Mary?” said the mother to the daughter. “You are as much interested as I. Shall we commit it to Mr. Loudon?”

“You are the best judge, but it seems to me that he understands the case better than any one you have ever talked with.”

Loudon thanked Mary with his eyes, but for some reason or other, hers were cast down upon the figures of the carpet, and she did not see him.

“Well, Mr. Loudon, we will commit the whole affair to you. If you succeed we shall be able to reward you; and if you do not, we shall be no poorer than we have been.”

For weeks and months Loudon studied his case. He was often at Rose Cottage to ask questions on some point not quite so clear. He found they were very agreeable—the mother and the daughter—aside from the law-suit, and I am not sure that he did not find occasion to ask questions oftener than he would have done, had it been otherwise.

The case, briefly was this. Mr. Henshaw had been an active, intelligent and high-minded man of business. He had dealt in iron, had large furnaces at different places, and did business on an average with three hundred different people a day. Among others, he had dealings with a man by the name of Brown—a plausible, keen, and as many thought, an unprincipled man. But Henshaw, without guile himself, put all confidence in him. In a reverse of times—such as occur once in about ten years, let who will be President—their affairs became embarrassed and terribly perplexed. In order to extricate his business, it was necessary for Henshaw to go to a distant part of the land, in company with Brown. There he died—leaving a young widow, and an only child, Mary, then about ten years old, and his business in a condition as bad as need be. By the kindness of the creditors their beautiful home called Elm Glen, was left to Mrs. Henshaw and her little girl, while the rest of the property went to pay the debts. The widow and her orphan kept the place of their joys and hopes in perfect order, and everybody said “it didn’t look like a widow’s house.” But within four years of the death of Mr. Henshaw, Brown returned. He had been detained by broken limbs and business, he said. What was the amazement of the widow to have him set up a claim for Elm Glen, as his property! 88 He had loaned Mr. Henshaw money, he said—he had been with him in sickness and in death; and the high-minded Henshaw had made his will on his death-bed, and bequeathed Elm Glen to Brown, as a payment for debts. The will was duly drawn, signed with Mr. Henshaw’s own signature, and also by two competent witnesses. Every one was astonished at the claim—at the will—at every thing pertaining to it. It was contested in court, but the evidence was clear, and the will was set up and established. Poor Mrs. Henshaw was stripped of everything. With a sad heart she packed up her simple wardrobe, and taking her child, left the village and went to a distant State to teach school. For six years she had been absent, and for six years had Brown enjoyed Elm Glen. No, not enjoyed it, for he enjoyed nothing. He lived in it; but the haggard look—the frequent appeal to the bottle—the jealous feelings which were ever uppermost—and his coarse, profane conversation, showed that he was wretched. People talked, too, of his lonely hours, his starting up in his sleep, his clenching his fist in his dreams, and defying “all hell” to prove it, and the like.

Suddenly and privately, Mrs. Henshaw returned to her once loved village. She had obtained some information by which she hoped to bring truth to light, for she had never believed that her husband ever made such a will in favor of Brown. To prove that this will was a forgery was what Loudon was now to attempt. An action was commenced, and Brown soon had notice of the warfare now to be carried on against him. He raved and swore, but he also laid aside his cups, and went to work to meet the storm like a man in the full consciousness of the justice of his cause. There was writing and riding, posting and sending writs—for both sides had much at stake. It was the last hope for the widow. It was the first case for young Loudon. It was victory or state’s prison for Brown. The community, one and all took sides with Mrs. Henshaw. If a bias could reach a jury, it must have been in her favor. Mr. Snapall was engaged for Brown, and was delighted to find that he had only that “white-faced boy” to contend with; and the good public felt sorry that the widow had not selected a man of some age and experience; but then they said, “women will have their own way.”

The day of trial came on. Great was the excitement to hear the great “will case,” and every horse in the region was hitched somewhere near the courthouse.

In rising to open the case, young Loudon was embarrassed; but modesty always meets with encouragement. The court gave him patient attention, and soon felt that it was deserved. In a clear, concise, and masterly manner, he laid open the case just as it stood in his own mind, and proceeded with the evidence to prove the will to be a forgery. It was easy to show the character of Brown to be one of great iniquity, and that for him to do this was only in keeping with that general character. He attempted to prove that the will could not be genuine, because one of its witnesses on his death-bed had confessed that it was a forgery, and that he and his friend had been hired by Brown to testify and swear to its being genuine. Here he adduced the affidavit of a deceased witness, taken in full before James Johnson, Esq. Justice of the Peace, and acknowledged by him. So far all was clear, and when the testimony closed it seemed clear that the case was won. But when it came Mr. Snapall’s turn, he demolished all these hopes by proving that though James Johnson, Esq. had signed himself Justice of the Peace, yet he was no magistrate, inasmuch as his commission had expired the very day before he signed the paper, and although he had been re-appointed, yet he had not been legally qualified to act as a magistrate—that he might or might not have supposed himself to be qualified to take an affidavit; and that the law, for very wise reasons, demanded that an affidavit should be taken only by a sworn magistrate. He was most happy, he said, to acknowledge the cool assurance of his young brother in the law; and the only difficulty was that he had proved nothing, except that his tender conscience permitted him to offer as an affidavit a paper that was in law not worth a straw, if any better than a forgery itself.

There was much sympathy felt for poor Loudon, but he took it very coolly and seemed no way cast down. Mr. Snapall then brought forward his other surviving witness—a gallows-looking fellow, but his testimony was clear, decided and consistent. If he was committing perjury, it was plain that he had been well-drilled by Snapall. Loudon kept his eye upon him with the keenness of the lynx. And while Snapall was commenting upon the case with great power, and while Mrs. Henshaw and Mary gave up all for lost, it was plain that Loudon, as he turned over the will, and looked at it again and again, was thinking of something else besides what Snapall was saying. He acted something as a dog does when he feels sure he is near the right track of the game, though he dare not yet bark.

When Snapall was through, Loudon requested that the witness might again be called to the stand. But he was so mild, and kind, and timid, that it seemed as if he was the one about to commit perjury.

“You take your oath that this instrument, purporting to be the will of Henry Henshaw, was signed by him in your presence?”

“I do.”

“And you signed it with your own hand as witness at the time?”

“I did.”

“What is the date of the will?”

“June 18, 1830.”

“When did Henshaw die?”

“June 22, 1830.”

“Were you living in the village where he died at the time?”

“I was.”

“How long had you lived there?”

“About four years, I believe, or somewhere thereabouts.”

Here Loudon handed the judge a paper, which the judge unfolded and laid before him on the bench.

89 “Was that village a large or a small one?”

“Not very large—perhaps fifty houses.”

“You knew all these houses well, I presume?”

“I did.”

“Was the house in which Mr. Henshaw died, one story or two?”

“Two, I believe.”

“But you know, don’t you? Was he in the lower story or in the chamber when you went to witness the deed?”

Here the witness tried to catch the eye of Snapall, but Loudon very civilly held him to the point. At length he said, “In the chamber.”

“Will you inform the court what was the color of the house?”

“I think, feel sure, it wasn’t painted, but didn’t take particular notice.”

“But you saw it every day for four years, and don’t you know?”

“It was not painted.”

“Which side of the street did it stand?”

“I can’t remember.”

“Can you remember which way the street ran?”

“It ran east and west.”

“The street ran east and west—the house two story, and unpainted, and Mr. Henshaw was in the chamber when you witnessed the will. Well, I have but two things more which I will request you to do. The first is to take that pen and write your name on that piece of paper on the table.”

The witness demurred, and so did Snapall. But Loudon insisted upon it.

“I can’t, my hand trembles so,” said the witness.

“Indeed! but you wrote a bold, powerful hand when you signed that will. Come, you must try, just to oblige us.”

After much haggling and some bravado, it came out that he couldn’t write, and never learned, and that he had requested Mr. Brown to sign the paper for him!

“Oh, ho!” said Loudon. “I thought you swore that you signed it yourself. Now one thing more, and I have done with you. Just let me take the pocket-book in your pocket. I will open it here before the court, and neither steal nor lose a paper.”

Again the witness refused, and appealed to Snapall; but that worthy man was grinding his teeth and muttering something about the witness going to the devil!

The pocket-book came out, and in it was a regular discharge of the bearer, John Ordin, from four years imprisonment in the Pennsylvania Penitentiary, and dated June 15, 1831, and signed by Mr. Wood, the worthy warden.

The young advocate now took the paper which he had handed to the judge, and showed the jury, that the house in which Mr. Henshaw died was situated in a street running north and south—that it was a one-story house—that it was red, the only red house in the village, and moreover, that he died in a front room of the lower story.

There was a moment’s silence, and then a stifled murmur of joy all over the room. Brown’s eyes looked blood-shot; the witness looked sullen and dogged, and Mr. Snapall tried to look very indifferent. He made no defence. The work was done. A very brief, decided charge was given by the judge, and, without leaving their seats, the jury convicted Brown of forgery!

“That young dog is keen, any how!” said Snapall.

“When his conscience tells him he is on the side of justice,” said Loudon, overhearing the remark.

It was rather late in the evening before Loudon called on his clients to congratulate them on the termination of their suit, and the recovery of Elm Glen. He was met by Mary, who frankly gave him her hand, and with tears thanked and praised him, and felt sure they could never sufficiently reward him. Loudon colored, and seemed more troubled than when in the court. At length he said abruptly, “Miss Henshaw, you and your mother can now aid me. There is a friend of yours—a young lady, whose hand I wish to obtain. I am alone in the world, poor, and unknown. This is my first law-case, and when I may have another is more than I know.”

Mary turned pale, and faintly promised that she and her mother would aid him to the extent of their power. Then there was a pause, and she felt as if she, the only one who was supposed to be unagitated and cool, must speak.

“Who is the fortunate friend of mine?”

“Don’t you suspect?”

“Indeed, I do not.”

“Well, here is her portrait,” handing her a miniature case. She touched a spring and it flew open, and in a little mirror, she saw her own face! Now the crimson came over her beautiful face, and the tears came thick and fast, and she trembled; but I believe she survived the shock; for the last time I was that way, I saw the conscientious young lawyer and his charming wife living at Elm Glen; and I heard them speak of his first law-suit!





What wiser is the world in this bright age—

  What better than in the darkened days of old?

  Survey the Past, its blotted scroll unfold;

Compare it with the Present’s golden page—

It is no worse; the world was cruel then,

  And hearts were trampled on, and spirits bled,

  And tears and blood like summer rain were shed,

And men were what they always will be—Men!

  Experience teaches naught, man will not heed

  And profit by the lessons. Fools can read;

The task is said by rote; we do not learn,

  But live in ancient ignorance and crime.

There is no hope—the Future will but turn

  The old sands in the failing glass of Time!






Bright dreams were mine in life’s young day,

  Too bright, too fair to last,

Fresh flow’rets sprung beside my way,

  And fragrance round it cast;

And hopes as radiant as the dyes

  That angel-artists spread,

Upon the western sunset skies,

  To my young heart were wed.


Bright days, sweet days, forever gone!

  Ye can return no more,

I’m doomed to tread the sands alone

  That skirt life’s desert shore!

Afar, upon the ocean wide,

  My bark of hope went down,

I saw the angel leave my side,

  And all things on me frown.


But there are paintings hanging yet

  In memory’s ghostly halls,

And bright young faces looking down

  Upon me from the walls.

The gentle smile that thrilled my soul,

  In life’s young break-of-day,

The small white hands once clasped in mine,

  Are pictured there for aye.


There is a form, I see it now,

  More radiant far than all,

The full, dark eye, the snowy brow

  That held my heart in thrall.

But, O, that voice, so low and sweet!

  I ne’er shall hear it more;

The fond, warm heart hath ceased to beat—

  My dream of bliss is o’er.


And still another picture there—

  A being young and bright;

The captive sunbeams in her hair,

  A form of love and light;

The deep blue tints that stain the sky,

  When summer bids it gleam,

Are mirrored in her laughing eye,

  Like violets in the stream.


I deemed those forms forever fled

  From time’s bleak desert shore,

And that the light upon me shed,

  Could visit me no more.

But late I saw a vision bright,

  And fair as those of old,

That taught to me this lesson trite—

  The heart can ne’er grow cold!


O, charming, charming young Christine

  Long years may pass away,

But cannot seize the love I ween,

  Of young life’s joyous day!

O, would some gem like thee were mine

  Upon my breast to wear,

Through Sorrow’s dreary hour to shine,

  And light the night of Care;


My glance upon mankind should fall

  Contented, happy, free,

And I should richer feel than all,

  My only treasure thee!

But, O, my lot is wild and drear,

  And sad the night-winds moan;

Upon life’s tree the leaves are sere,

  And I am all alone.





It hath been said, “for all who die,

        There is a tear;

Some pining, bleeding heart to sigh,

        O’er every bier;”

But in that hour of pain and dread,

        Who will draw near,

Around my humble couch, and shed

        One farewell tear?


Who watch life’s last dim parting ray,

        In deep despair,

And soothe my spirit on its way,

        With holy prayer?

What mourner round my bier will come,

        In weeds of wo,

And follow me to my long home,

        Solemn and slow?


When lying on my clayey bed,

        In icy sleep,

Who there, by pure affection led,

        Will come and weep?

And by the moon implant the rose

        Upon my breast,

And bid it cheer my dark repose,

        My lowly rest?


Could I but know when I am sleeping

        Low in the ground,

One faithful heart would there be keeping

        Watch all night round,

As if some gem lay shrined beneath

        That sod’s cold gloom,

’Twould mitigate the pangs of death,

        And light the tomb.


Yes! in that hour, if I could feel,

        From halls of glee

And Beauty’s presence, one would steal

        In secresy,

And come and sit and weep by me

        In night’s deep noon;

Oh! I would ask of memory

        No other boon.


But, ah! a lonelier fate is mine—

        A deeper wo;

From all I love in youth’s sweet time

        I soon must go,

Drawn round me my pale robes of white

        In a dark spot,

To sleep through death’s long, dreamless night,

        Lone and forgot.








Away with weary cares and themes!

Luring wide the moonlit gate of dreams!

Leave free once more the land which teems

  With wonders and romances!


I know that thou wilt judge aright

Of all that makes the heart more light,

Or lends one star-gleam to the night

  Of clouded Melancholy!

J. G. Whittier.

I fancy, my good reader, that you are about as familiar with the physical appearance of this exalted personage, the far-famed Man in the Moon, as is your most obedient. That you have gazed upon him with love-kindled eyes many and many a witching summer night, I have not the shadow of a doubt—that you have often lamented the provoking imperfectness of your vision, which presents such insurmountable difficulties and obstructions in the way to your beholding clearly what manner of man he truly is, I cannot have much hesitation in believing; reasoning as I do, from my extensive knowledge of what passes in the minds of other people, and from the thoughts and feelings I have had myself in regard to the peculiar personalities of this mysterious gentleman.

Until recently I never indulged in the hope of being counted among the benefactors of my race, but, my fair countrywomen, I hope I do not presume too much, when I say that I shall hereafter merit this honor at your hands, for am I not going to speak to you of events which, wonderful as they are, have hitherto never come to the knowledge of our present generation? I cannot conscientiously make known to you the mysterious means by which I became cognizant of the following events, yet do I hold myself clear of any breach of confidence when I lay before you these wondrous facts, upon the truth of which you may rely, on my veracity as a story-teller!

Long, long ago there lived in a far country, among the mountains, which towered to heaven much in the manner of mountains now, a young maiden, who must certainly have been one of the progenitors of “The Sinless Child;” for in personal beauty, and in excellence and purity of mind, this girl was unsurpassed, perhaps unequaled in her day. A “rare and radiant maiden” was she, albeit unaccomplished and unlearned.

Kind, generous and affectionate was Rose May, having withal such a reasonable amount of spirited independence in her nature, as a child born and bred among the mountain wilds would be like to have.

It was a glorious dwelling-place, that of my heroine! Grant May, her father, was a shepherd, a rugged man of middle age, whose furrowed face bore testimony to the fact, that he had encountered and weathered many a hard storm in the course of his life. A true son of the mountains was he; for three or four generations back his fathers had lived, shepherds, in these same wild heights, and I doubt much if this son of his father could ever have breathed the warmer and gentler air of a less elevated home. Occasionally, but at long intervals, he had wandered away to the world below him, but, like the eagle, his eyry and his affections were fixed amid the towering heights, the rugged scenes and bracing air of the mountains—there was the home for which Nature and a forty years’ residence had fitted him.

The shepherd’s house was built in what, to an eye unaccustomed to such scenes, would seem a most dangerous situation. But it was just to the contrary. Erected on the side of a deep ravine at the bend of the stream, it was sheltered on three sides from the rough, wild winds of winter; and in summer it seemed half buried in the vegetation, which was nowhere on the mountains so abundant as about this place. Above, beneath, and around the cottage there were hardy bushes and flowering shrubs, and towering high above them the pine-trees and the strong-limbed offspring of that rugged clime; and higher still above the flowers, and bushes, and pines, spread the bright deep blue sky, which seemed to rest its mighty arches on the peaks and crags of those great heights.

Yes, it was a glorious home, a noble dwelling-place, that of young Rose May! The voice of the southern wind, when it crept so softly up the mountain, and through the branches of the pines, to kiss her brow, and tell her of the wild beauty of the land from which it wandered, that voice was sweet and welcome music to her ear; but no less loved and welcome was the trumpet-blast of the storm, when it came rushing like a fiend’s voice past her home, or like the challenge of a giant fresh from the strong fortress where the soldiery of Winter were garrisoned. Rose loved the flowers, the gay bright blossoms which in midsummer bloomed about her home, but more keen was her delight in the grandeur which made her heart to thrill, and her blood to leap wildly through its veins, when on awakening some dreary 92 mornings of winter, she saw the pine-trees loaded with the wealth of glittering icicles, which glowed and blazed with a splendor greater than if the treasuries of all the kings and princes of earth had been melted and poured over those same stately scions of the soil.

Nature in all her phases was beautiful, and welcome to Rose May; but there was something in the heart of the girl which made her sympathize with, and rejoice more keenly in the grand and terrible shapes the great Queen chose during more than eight months of the year to appear in. Therefore Rose May was most truly a daughter, a bright, strong-hearted, noble daughter of the mountains.

They had aptly named this maiden after the queen of the flowers. For though there were many sons in Grant May’s household, Rose was the only daughter, and she was like a rose indeed, the fairest as well as tenderest bud opening beneath the family roof-tree. The bloom of health was on the maiden’s cheek—the glow of health was in her veins and in the calm beating of her heart, which told so steadily “all’s well.”

While Grant May and his sons were absent from their home all day, tending to their many flocks, Rose remained with her mother at home, assisting her with willing hand in the domestic toils; and a steady and invaluable helpmate was she, spinning yarn from the sheep her father called her own, and then knitting the proceeds into stout socks and mittens for them who labored out of doors; and ingeniously contriving numerous garments, whereby to keep the ears, necks and feet of her wild, light-hearted brothers warm in the dreadful winter weather. Rose was, in fact, quite a pattern maid; never complaining, or caring to rest herself even when she was aweary, while there was any work left for her mother to do—and the last thing she ever would have thought to boast of was ignorance of any part of the book of domestic economy—which volume, if you, my dear reader, have had any occasion to thumb, you know very well is not printed with the most readable or understandable type.

Rose May had not many companions. There were, it is true, other families, and numbers of them, scattered among the mountains, but these lived at long distances from each other, and were so circumstanced as to preclude the possibility of frequent visitings. But when these far-off neighbors did meet, it was with the warm and earnest good feeling which people so situated would be likely to entertain for each other. Perhaps their mutual interest was even more sincere and honest, their friendship more generous and truthful, than if they had been able to hold more frequent and familiar communication with each other, partaking, as necessarily they did, each and all, of the mundane nature, for they had scarcely time to discover one another’s particular failings and short-comings.

There were two families, however, whose members maintained a more familiar intimacy with the household of Grant May than the other mountaineers. And for this reason. In both these families there was a son—each, only sons, too, who regarded Rose May with fonder eyes than mere friendly interest would warrant; they both loved her with all the devotion their wild, earnest spirits were capable of—both acknowledged her the queen of the mountain flowers, and the object of their supreme regard.

One of these youths was named Joseph Rancy; his father was the wealthiest of the shepherds—the son would be the old man’s sole heir. This fact alone was one calculated to greatly enhance the merits of the young man—to make him a favored guest—a much sought for friend—and an acceptable suitor, especially in the eyes of parents who had a double eye to their daughter’s happiness and good fortune.

Joseph was a tall, robust, free-spoken youth, with a heart whose honesty forbade his lips ever speaking a word which could not safely be echoed in its recesses. But his very bluntness, though it arose from his honesty of purpose, was not perhaps calculated to make him a great favorite with that class of people said to be lovers of soft words and honied speeches. Joseph was a great favorite with Grant May and with the young brethren of Rose. They liked him for his generosity and daring, and for many noble traits of character he evinced, which I will not now stop to enumerate. The young man knew he stood well in their eyes—but about her whose favor he cared for more than all the rest, he was as yet in a state of doubt and perplexity.

The other youth who visited so frequently Grant May’s cottage was Rob Horn. To say Rob was handsome as a picture would be rather a doubtful compliment; but handsome he was, tall and straight as an Indian, with a bright, smiling face—which (but for a treacherous expression sometimes seen lurking about the mouth) seemed to hail every man a brother and friend; then his hair was black as a raven’s wing, eyes ditto—a becoming bloom on his brown cheeks, graceful, light-hearted, cheerful and companionable—there, you have Rob Horn—is he one you would suppose Rose May might love?

Rob also was an only son—but the great difference between him and Joseph Rancy was, that his father was far from wealthy, having only managed to keep partially “above board,” during all the long years of his earthly pilgrimage.

More than once Rob had roved away from his mountain home to the low-land villages, for his was a restless spirit, and his were roving eyes, that grew weary at times of looking always on the same grand scenes; but still he seemed to retain an unextinguishable affection for his native home, for after a short absence he always returned to his father’s humble cot, with his head full of the scenes he had looked upon in the busy world, but with his curiosity satisfied, and his heart all right toward home. The reason, however, of his invariable return was, that up in the old eagle’s eyry (that is in Grant May’s cottage) there was the little bird whose wild, free-gushing songs was the attractive power which always called him back.

And among the fairer faced damsels who lived in 93 cities, were there none whom Rob thought comparable with the unfettered-by-fashion Rose May? Was there none whose smile made his heart thrill with rapture? Was there not one whose voice was sweeter than an angel’s to his ear, whose words were dearly remembered, and treasured long after they were uttered? Let us see.

Sitting by the blazing fire in Grant May’s kitchen during the long, pleasant winter evenings, and telling to the gathered family the strange fashions and habits of the people with whom he had occasionally mingled—describing to the wondering children modes of life which they in their simplicity had never dreamed of, and to the father the changes which had occurred in public affairs, and to the mother, of the women, whose acquaintance he had made, and of the friends she had known in her girlhood whom he had chanced to meet, it is not to be supposed that he neglected all this while, and thought not at all of the fair young listener, to please whom he would have talked on forever, had that been necessary—no, indeed, she was not forgotten, for during many years Rob had been incessantly at work, forming a telegraph route between his heart and her own; he was even then, during those winter evenings, busy in that great work of his life, and ere long he was determined to prove if the work was perfect—but he delayed sending the first real dispatch—he feared lest it should be uncomprehended and unanswered.

To Rose, Rob had always seemed kind, and noble, and honest—in short, all that man ought to be—all that Joseph Rancy was. And a keener insight than she possessed, or many mortals on earth possess, would have been requisite in this case to detect the true gold from the glittering dross. Even when the maiden’s father discovered how all the inclination and affection of his child chose Rob instead of Joseph, he did not see any insurmountable objection lying in the way to the child’s union with the former—and it was only with a sigh for the fortune which might have been his daughter’s, that he gave up all idea of her ever wedding Joseph Rancy.

These two boys had always been the most intimate and best of friends. In earlier days the visits which they planned together to make to their young friend, Rose, were unmarred by jealous thoughts, they were marked as the best of their weekly holydays. No matter how deep the snow might lie on their path toward Grant May’s cot, these appointments, which they made between themselves, were ever regularly kept; for the thought of the bright faces which always gave them such a hearty welcome, and made for them a place by the warm fire with such ready zeal, was a sufficient inducement for them to brave the coldest weather, and the stormiest day.

But as the two grew older, and learned to distinguish between friendliness and love, they did, sorry am I to tell, grow jealous of one another, and at last, before they had concluded it were better to make these visits to Rose alone, each by himself, when Rose had unwittingly spoken in a tone more kindly to one of them, and evinced in any way an innocent and thoughtless preference, the other walked homeward with closed lips and aching heart, and in most unsocial mood.

Joseph Rancy had never dared to speak openly to Rose May of love. It was strange that one so stout-hearted as he, with all the advantages of wealth, beside possessing much personal beauty, should falter as he tried to tell a simple mountain maid he loved her! But so it was. The words refused to obey his bidding when he tried to utter them. He had not lived even in those busy places where men and women congregate, yet he did know that “faint heart never won fair lady,” and the very knowledge of that truth but increased his fears. Poor fellow! he doubted his own powers to please, and he knew that Rob Horn was a powerful and much to be feared rival. But Joseph was one who could not easily give up a thought he had cherished for so long. It was a hope it would have been hard for him to relinquish; he could never forget that he had loved Rose May, even though she turned a relentlessly deaf ear to his suit; his heart would never be satisfied with the affection of another woman. And I say but the truth, when I tell you he was worthy of her love—more worthy, if a less dashing lover than Rob Horn. There was less glitter in him, far more real worth, less of admiration, and passion, than deep and earnest love in his thoughts of Rose.

He had placed his hopes upon her returning affection; and it is not agreeable with the natural order of things, to suppose that he would for ever continue irresolute in a case momentous as this; and so, once again, with the express desire to hear his fate decided by her lips, he set out on a summer morning, determined that his resolution should hold out till he had heard his doom from her own voice.

The day was favorable; oh! if the event might only prove so, too! The time also seemed propitious, for before Joseph had half way reached her father’s house, he met Rose May. She was gathering wild-flowers, and when she saw him coming toward her, she gayly bade him assist her in the pleasant work. I know not if those simple people ever studied the “language of flowers;” perhaps, however, the science is a natural one, but this I know, that there was a great preponderance of mountain-roses, buds, and half-opened blossoms, in the flowers Joseph gathered for the little lady. Ah, what a lucky wight! the beautiful summer morning—the silent wood—the naturalness of the offer of his heart with the flowers he gave her! Surely Fate, for once, was propitious! But notwithstanding the chances were with him, and the hour was one of a thousand, Joseph still hesitated and delayed; and it was not till all the flowers were gathered, and Rose had actually set out on her homeward path, that Joseph nerved himself to the pitch requisite.

And, indeed, it was quite a point in his destiny he had reached; the next step you plainly see was an important, an all important one to him. It had been the hope of years that he might win, and one day wed, Rose May; he had lived in that hope; its working out had been one of the most blessed of his thoughts; and 94 now, in five short minutes (perhaps less) he would know if this dear dream were to have fruition, or was it to pass away like the morning dew, leaving him no possibility of ever indulging in it again, that is, with reason—and Joseph was a reasonable youth.

As I have stated, he was an uneducated youth, that is, uneducated in the schools, and ignorant and innocent of polite learning, therefore he knew but one way of discovering a fact, and that was by asking a question point-blank. When Rose was about emerging from the wood, from whence a little path led down the ravine to her father’s house, he paused in the walk, and said quite distinctly,

“Wait a moment, Rose May. I came to ask you a question I have thought to ask you this long time—will you love me—will you be my wife?”

“Yours, Joseph,” replied Rose, as honestly and unreservedly as the question had been put; “Yours—how can you think of such a thing?”

“I have thought of it for years, Rose. You have so many brothers and friends, like enough you have considered me as one of them; but I, I have no sister, Rose, no friend I hold half so dear as you. It does not strike me as such a very strange thing to ask you; if you will only think of it, I do not ask you to answer me to-day. Perhaps when you think it all over, the matter will not seem so strange; and I would not have you answer me in haste, dear Rose.”

“Never, Joseph Rancy,” answered Rose, speaking rapidly, but kindly, though so firm. “I have always thought of you as a dear friend, that is true, but I can never be any more than that.”

“Will you not say any thing more, Rose? Think again; you call me your dear friend, oh, be my wife, my best and dearest friend. Your home is so happy, think of mine, lonely and dreary as it is now; what a paradise it might be were you there! Rose, dear Rose May, I pray you only to think again.”

“I have thought, Joseph; do not speak to me so any more, it pains me; there are many others who might make your home as happy, far happier than I; forget that you have had such thoughts about me, my friend.”

“How can I forget,” said Joseph, sadly, while for a moment longer he retained her to hear his words, for she was hastening away. “Tell me, Rose,” he said, falteringly, “is there any other—do you love any body better than me?”

“Yes, my father and mother.”

“Not them—I don’t mean them; the love I ask is not the kind you give to them—but is there another—”

“It is not right in you to ask me such questions, you know it is not. Don’t make me think the less of you as a friend by going too far now.”

“Forgive me dear, dear Rose—I’m going. Don’t let what I’ve said trouble you; I’d let my tongue be burned with hot iron before speaking what I have to you to-day, if I thought ’twould make you less happy.”

“Good-by, Joseph, now you are what you always have been, generous and good; and if I don’t love you as you could wish, I honor you from my heart—good-by.”

There was a lingering sadness in the maiden’s voice as she spoke, that convinced Joseph she was honest in her words, and that she did sincerely grieve to have been the cause of disappointment to him; yet that knowledge did not soothe nor allay the heart-wound she had given him; and he went back to his home, feeling, as I suppose many a poor mortal has felt before, disconsolate and unhappy. Still Joseph was a young man of sound mind, and he loved Rose May even better than ever he had before; her very firmness made him respect her for it, though that firmness was all directed against his suit.

Often as he thought over the unmeasurable distance there must forever be, even in thought, between them, so often came the soothing remembrance that it was not lack of worth on his part that made her reject him. Had she not said she honored him? And was not such respect and kindly feeling, indeed, the highest and the purest kind of love? Might he not some day convince her that it was also the best love, and the one most conducive to happiness in wedded life? But, alas! close upon this thought came the death-blow to all hope, for Joseph was convinced that she would wed another.

Yes, and there was one she had promised to wed—one for whom she had more than respect—one whom she more than honored—and he none other than Rob Horn! He was the fortunate youth whose telegraph-dispatch was successful in receiving a speedy and satisfactory reply. Fortune favored him; does she favor only the good, and the deserving, and true?

The home of one of the most powerful of the spirits was in these mountains—a spirit loving justice and equity, who watched the scales wherein the good and evil were weighed with jealous eye. This being of power took much interest in the affairs of the shepherds; sometimes she had even deigned to speak with them in her quiet, unostentatious way; and when she taught them, it was generally on some subject of domestic good or household economy. Almost all her instructions had been of this nature, for they were a quiet, religious people among whom she lived, giving away very rarely to the temptations of vice; but once or twice the spirit had spoken in rather strong and understandable language, to an offender who rarely in his sinful life had any “compunctious visitings.” No one had ever seen her bodily, and yet there was but one person who dared to disbelieve in the spirit’s existence, but one who would not recognize her power; and who should this reckless one be but the wild youth, Rob Horn? He dared to say, and say openly, too, that there was never any such being in existence, and that from the very nature of things there never could be. Some people will never believe in any thing out of the ordinary range of facts, more especially if they be in a state of partial ignorance—and of this very class of persons was Rob; the spirit had never manifested herself in any shape to him, and he, poor mortal! fancied she never could.

It was the only point in her lover’s nature that Rose May feared—this skepticism; for Rose was a 95 firm believer in all spiritual existences; and often, but unavailingly, she had besought Rob to at least speak in a manner more respectful of the powerful agent, who would, she knew, work him wo if he continued obdurate in his unbelief. But there was nothing in the natural world the young man feared, there was no danger he dared not brave—why then tremble at the unseen, unknown, unheard? Why give heed to the superstitious fears of old women and maidens? Instead of being able in this case to convince her lover, Rose, after all, was herself almost persuaded by his jests and ridicule to doubt the existence of the power, which she also had never seen or heard. She began to give place in her mind to Rob’s words, that it was the idlest thing in the world to believe in such romantic impossible existences. But as yet Rose had kept her growing infidelity to herself; she would not have dared to breathe to her mother even, who was firm in the faith, her strengthening doubts; perhaps it was well for her she did not dare.

It was night—the night previous to his bridal day—and at a late hour Rob left the home of Rose, and bent his steps through the rough path that led to his own dwelling-place. The happy fellow, if we may judge from facts, was in a most delightful state of mind, well-pleased with himself and his bride-to-be, and with all the world beside. “To-morrow” was his wedding-day, and ever thereafter Rose May, the brightest flower of the mountains, was his own! And well might he rejoice.

Grant May had yielded to the youth’s solicitations with a good grace when he found his child’s hope and love were directed toward Rob; and it was no difficult thing to win the consent of the mother, for he had always been in high favor with her, since he brought her from his wanderings in the valley, the inestimable gift of a few bright pieces of useful furniture, which occupied the most honorable places and positions in her household.

In a few days after the festivities following the great occasion were over, Rob, with his bride, were to make the journey to the nearest large town, which plan was of itself half enough to make young Rose wild with joy, for the greatest multitude she had ever seen gathered, was on the Sabbath days, when twenty or thirty of the mountain people met in the little church to worship.

It was a bright moonlit night, the soft light streamed over the path he was to tread, as Rob returned home. The parting kiss of Rose was warm on his forehead; he fancied she was beside him, walking in the same path, and nearly all the way he talked soft words of love as though she were by to hear. When the young man had nearly reached his home, he encountered Joseph Rancy. These two had been far from cordial in their greetings of late, and with good reason, for Rob’s manner to Joseph had been that of triumph, and Joseph’s that of a man heart-sore and jealous of the success of his rival.

This night, however, Joseph Rancy had come out with the express purpose of meeting his friend of other days, and to speak with him in the manner of by-gone time, as kindly and as generously. When he had come up directly in front of Rob, he was still unobserved; he paused then, and holding out his hand, said,

“I came out on purpose to meet you, Rob.”

Horn took the proffered hand in his own, and said,

“I am glad to see you, truly, Rancy; we have not met of late.”

“No; we haven’t been the friends we once were, Rob. I have shunned you because—because you seemed to triumph over me, my old friend. You who have been so successful where I failed so bitterly.”

“Was it my fault that I succeeded in winning Rose May, tell me that,” replied Horn, sharply. “Where’s the blame, then, if I did rejoice?”

“No blame, none, none,” said Joseph, mildly, “you have been fortunate indeed, I wish you and yours much joy Rob, now and ever.”

“Hold,” cried Rob as Joseph turned away, “you will come to the church to-morrow, will you not. You will wish to see Rose married?”

“Rob!” exclaimed Joseph, in a tone of deep reproach, “no—I can bear to know you are going to marry her—I can hope for you, and pray for you both—but to see her married to another! You will not need me there.”

When he finished speaking Joseph went off quickly on his way, and Rob Horn pursued his path home; the only answer he returned to Joseph’s grief was a smothered laugh, which stifled as it was in the stillness of the night, the disappointed seeker of peace heard distinctly.

All that night Joseph Rancy sat on the opposite bank of the ravine where he might look on the dwelling-place of Rose May, and all that night he prayed for her happiness, and strove hard to banish all unfriendly thoughts toward Rob Horn from his mind. But when the morning came, long before the sun rose he wandered away among the mountains, that he might be far off from the place where she would be given to another.

Rob went on to his home—the cot was still as sleep, for his father and mother had hours before retired to their rest. He went to his chamber, and soon upon the easy couch he slept. And then Rob dreamed; of course there was but one he could dream of all that night, his young and beautiful bride, the girl he would be so proud to hear the old priest pronounce his wife. But though he could only dream of her, it does not follow that his night visions were pleasant—far enough from pleasant was the truth in this case.

He fancied that the spirit of the mountain, (the same in whose existence he had doubted for so long,) came to him with an angry frown on her spirit countenance. He trembled, yes he, the strong iron-willed youth trembled when he looked on her; he had never feared or quailed before. When she had come quite close to his bedside, and rested her hand upon his shoulder, where it lay like lead, and gazed so sternly upon him, Rob said to her:

“Why dost thou come here to disturb me, and trouble my dreams, thou terrible shape?”

And the spirit answered:

96 “Tell me instead, what is it thou art about to do?”

“That is quickly told,” said Horn, “to-morrow I shall marry Rose May, the loveliest maid the sun ever shone upon.”

“Ah, Rob Horn, Rob Horn,” said the spirit sternly, interrupting him, “bethink thee what it is thou wilt do! bethink thee what has become of thy betrothed in the distant village? does she wear thy ring? does she remember thy kiss, and thy love vows? what of her Rob Horn?”

When the spirit spoke thus Rob was amazed, and he could not hide his amazement; his face became suddenly very red—was it the confusion of guilt? and for a moment he was completely abashed. But soon he rallied again, and said,

“I cannot marry two wives. I have loved Rose May all my life—I must marry her; the maiden in the village can find another bridegroom.”

“Thou art not worthy to wed one like Rose May, but there is one worthy of her whom thou hast triumphed over many a time, and even this very night, because thou hast been more successful than he—beware, thou may’st go too far.”

“Too far! She will be mine to-morrow—what power in heaven or earth can separate us? She is mine—mine—mine!”

“Thou mayest deceive thyself. I ask thee, wilt thou not give up Rose May and betake thee to the pale and sorrowing maid who has awaited thy coming so long?”

“Give her up? My Rose! never! Thou fool to ask it of me!”

“And yet I do ask thee again, wilt thou not be just? Do that which thine honor and truth require of thee—the girl thou hast deserted will die.”

“Be death her bridegroom then! Who art thou to take my Rose from me? She is mine, I will wed no other!”

“Why so sure? Did ever such wickedness as is in thee prosper? Thou hast a bad heart Rob Horn, and a thousand things may come between thee and her, even after the priest proclaims her thine. There is nothing sure or stable for one like thee! give her up now, or beware—a fate more terrible than thou canst think may be in store for thee.”

“Begone thou prating fool! rather will I give my life up than my Rose, my bride, my beautiful!”

So firmly was this third repetition of his determination spoken that Rob awoke, and as might be supposed he found himself alone, and the sunlight streaming brightly through his little window. Heartily congratulating himself that it was all a dream, the young man arose, and ere long had tastefully adorned himself with the new raiment prepared for the momentous occasion.

The morning was verging toward noon, when in the simple church the wedding party gathered before the altar.

There was beautiful Rose May and her handsome bridegroom, and after the manner of things, of necessity, the twain never in their lives looked so charmingly as then. And there were the parents of the bridegroom and the bride, happy as parents might be, who believed they were about to witness the consummation of their children’s joy. And there also were all the young brothers of Rose, bright and smiling, as such little folks on such occasions invariably are. These were all gathered about the altar; the body of the church was nearly filled with the young friends of the to-be-married ones, and the sturdy old mountaineers with their wives.

It would not be strictly cleaving to truth to say that Rob Horn was wholly at ease that morning—far otherwise, for that strange dream of his tormented him. It was foremost in his mind, claiming even in that holy hour more of his thought than the gentle, excited girl who leaned in trusting fondness on his arm. Why should a merely ugly dream annoy him so? Was the young skeptic’s disbelief in spirits shaken? Had he in reality a promised bride awaiting him in the far-off village? Have patience with me, by the dénoument you will know it all.

They were kneeling before the altar. The consecrated hands of the old priest were raised in blessing above them, he was about pronouncing the uniting words, and Rob, the bridegroom, was thinking even then if there were in reality spirits he had overpowered his visitant, at least, by his boldness and firmness, when suddenly there came a shape of light floating through the open door of the church. It moved on noiselessly through the holy edifice above the heads of the astonished and alarmed congregation, until it came to the altar, and there it paused. And then a voice soft and thrilling as the voice of the summer breeze, yet distinctly audible to every soul gathered there, said—

“Rise, Robert Horn, thou shalt not speak the marriage vows!”

And pale as death, Rob, unable to resist these words, lifted up himself.

Then distinctly as before, the voice said—

“Did I not tell thee to beware? Did I not forbid thee to wed this maid, thou, who hast another plighted to thee, one who waits and watches for thee, wondering at thy long delay? Did I not bid beware—didst thou not laugh at my words? Answer me, Robert Horn?”

The bridegroom lifted up his eyes to the shape before him and said, but with a voice that trembled—

“Thou didst bid me beware, but I am here notwithstanding—here to take this woman for my wife, and Rose is here, she is mine, and thou, whatsoever thou art, canst not and shalt not part us.”

“Thou hast sealed thy fate,” answered the Spirit of the Mountain, “for thy wickedness, thy falseness, and thy unbelief, thou shalt be banished away from the earth for ever! And it shall be a part of the misery of thy banishment, that once in every month from thy prison-house thou shalt look down upon this lower world. Thou shalt see, and know, and feel, all the pangs, and the bliss, and the glory of love, and yet hereafter never share it with any mortal! The water-brooks, the oceans, and the seas, shall reflect thy image, and thou shalt know the bitterness of seeing even these unconscious soulless things unknowing thee, uncaring for thee. Thou shalt live on for 97 years till they are counted by centuries, long after she thou hast so shamefully deserted sleeps the quiet, blessed sleep of death; thou shalt live to mourn and to lament over a fate thou canst not change. Thy doom is more dreadful than thou canst yet conceive of! Come, wait not even for her last embrace, come—come—come!”

Swiftly away they passed, the spirit and the wifeless bridegroom, without one parting look, or kiss, or word with the trembling girl forever separated from the forever exiled youth. In an instant the little church was vacant, and without its walls might be seen gathered a group of terrified people, and foremost among them the widowed Rose, gazing on the far upper flight of poor Rob Horn.

The new moon that night came up in all her glorious beauty, and sailed on calmly as she was wont to do over the broad blue upper sea; and night after night she glided over the vast expanse, unfurling gradually wider and wider her sails, till in full and perfect splendor she at last appeared. And then, yes then Rose May beheld her lover once more; but oh that shadowy glimpse she caught of him was worse to her than had she looked on utter vacancy. She knew that he was gazing on her home, that he looked in despair on her, but, alas! she saw no more the tender light that filled once his beautiful, dark eyes; she heard no words from his silenced lips, and it was like a torturing dream to her to look upon him thus, and fancy all the horrors of his banishment.

And what of Rob? He dwells in moon-land yet! among the elevated “mountains of the moon,” instead of those dear, wild heights his dwelling place on earth. Who ever could have dreamed that the wretched Wandering Jew had an unknown companion in yon bright sphere, whose lot was yet more miserable than his own? Who ever thought a “breach of promise” might be visited on unfaithful man, in quite another and more effectual way, than by laying strong hold on his most precious purse-strings?

Oh, ye soft-hearted maidens, I pray you henceforth bear in mind who is the captive knight to whom so oft your fond eyes are directed, “oft in the stilly night,” when he doth stand on the brink of the “moon mountains” and gazeth down so sadly on the world, remember ye this story I have told, and turn away and leave him quite alone. Sing not in pensive strains the praise he loves to hear, laud not the beauty of the exile’s home, for oh his strained ear is strong to catch your words, his eye is quick to note your admiration. Let him not gladden in one word from thee.

And ye, gay-hearted knights, so strong to promise, and so slow to do; ye who do count it pastime to win woman’s love, and then fling it away as ye would cast aside the flower of lost fragrance, but be ye warned in time, for spirits are, and moon-land yet may find room in its borders for thy feet!

And now what more remains for me to tell. You have guessed, I know, how the warm-hearted spirit taught Rose May that Joseph Rancy possessed all the good and attractive qualities of the lost lover, with none of his sins and follies! You have guessed that one gay morning the old church doors were opened for another bridal party—that young Rose stood again in marriage garments before the altar, and Joseph by her side. You have guessed how the Spirit once more glided through the “place of prayer,” to add her blessing to that which the priest pronounced over the bridegroom and the bride.

Why speak of the happy home where Joseph Rancy dwelt with his beautiful lady-love? Why tell of all that wedded bliss which people for the most part in our world have heard of already, or else desire in an especial manner to hear of, and to know. And why say that all the teachings and advice which the Spirit deigned to administer to these two blest mortals, was ever received and heeded by them with the utmost care and gratitude?

Do you believe in dreams? No! Why not? Have you, indeed, yet to learn, that through them the good spirits whisper to us advice, and peace, and warning, and consolation! Are you so cold and dull as to believe there are no ministering spirits, no guiding guardian angels? Do you, can you scornfully repel the idea that the forests and mountains, the oceans and the plains, have their myriad viewless intellectual inhabitants? Ah, foolishly unwise, may these powerful agents have mercy on you, and charitably bear with your shameful, willful blindness!

What then—must I set you down as more ignorant and unlearned than even simple Joseph Rancy? Fling all your book-learning aside and be a very child in all knowledge, I beseech you, if that will give you faith in these surrounding millions, to believe in them, and a keen mental eyesight to behold them. And do not, above all things, dare to brave the possible malignance of Rob Horn, that is, if you regard the preservation of your worldly wealth. Gather not in your harvests, and your winter stores, while he is gazing full upon you, rather follow honest Joseph’s example, shear all shearable sheep, reap in the wealth of your apple-trees, and massacre your swine while Rob is sleeping in the shade of the mountains, just before he awakens from his slumber to gaze openly upon your doings. And if you manifest your faith in my story in no other way than in doing this, I shall be satisfied, and feel, whether you admit it or not, that I have for once “well done.”


Engraved expressly for Graham’s Magazine




Sweet child, whose gentle eyes upon

  The mirror’s polished surface rest,

Thy heart no grief has ever known,

  No anxious care disturbs thy breast.


O, may the coming time, to thee

  Calm as the present ever prove;

And she who guards thy infancy

  Live years of rapture in thy love.







Hail, Father Thames! ’Tis joy to me

Once more thy face and haunts to see;

For lingering verdure, soft and rare,

Makes thine autumnal carpet fair;

And ’mid thy bordering heights is seen

The strong and patient evergreen,

While checkering sunbeams gild thy way,

And lightly with thy ripples play.

  Spare not to give me smile of cheer,

And kindly bid me welcome here;

For some, who erst my hand would take,

And love me for affection’s sake,

Sleep the cold sleep that may not break;

And though to fill their vacant place

Are blooming brows and forms of grace,

Who still a favoring glance extend,

And greet their parent’s cherished friend,

Yet mingling with that welcome dear,

Are voices that they may not hear;

For visioned forms around me glide,

And tender memories throng my side,

Till tears, like pearl-drops, all apart,

Swell in the silence of the heart.




Methinks thou speak’st of change. ’Tis true;

What hand may hold the morning dew

All unexhaled through lengthened day,

To sparkle ’neath the westering ray?

Who dreams his flowing curls to keep,

While years roll on, in eddies deep?

The elastic feet, that sprung untired,

Where cliffs o’er towering cliffs aspired;

The heart, untaught a pang to bear,

The cheek that ne’er had paled with care,

The eye, undimmed by sorrow’s rain—

How could I bring these back again?

Change hath a part in every loan

And gift that youth doth call its own,

Nor grants old Earth a bond or claim,

Without the endorsement of his name;

So, that’s the tenure, father dear,

By which we hold possession here,

And be not strict to mark with shame,

Unless thyself wert free from blame,

For, in thy presence be it told,

That even thou art changed and old.

  Methinks, with wild resentment’s flash,

I hear thy rising currents dash—

But still my charge I’ll deftly prove;

Where are the healthful flowers that wove

Fresh garlands here, in copse and grove?

The golden-rod, of sunny hue,

Heart’s-ease and violets deeply blue,

The lustrous laurel, richly drest,

That through the sober alders prest;

These blossomed when I saw thee last,

Yet now, dismantled branches cast

Keen challenge to the mocking blast,

And fallen leaves, in eddies dank,

Reproachful strew thy mottled bank.

  Thy shrouded dells, where lovers stole,

Or poets mused with raptured soul—

Where are they now? I ask in vain;

Strange iron steeds that scorn the rein,

With shriek, and tramp, and nostrils bright,

The herds amid thy pastures fright;

And clashing wheel, and spindle’s force,

Oft drain thy faithful allies’ source,

Shetucket, with his roughened breast,

And Yantic, that I love the best;

While granite walls, and roofs of grace,

Usurp the moping owlet’s place.

Yes, thou art changed, the world hath made

High inroad on thy hermit shade.

  But, say’st thou, that with spirit true

Thou keep’st a glorious goal in view;

Heaven speed thee on, with feet of glee,

And bless thy bridal with the sea;

Dear River! that doth lingering stay,

Laving the sandals, on thy way;

Of the fair city of my birth,

Perchance, the loveliest spot on earth.

  Be thou our guide. Thy steadfast eye

Might teach us our own goal to spy;

For to that goal, through smile and tear,

Each winged moment brings us near;

Oh! may it be that blissful shore,

Where chance and change are known no more.





Let the poet-lord bepraise the sword

  That gleams on Conquest’s track;

Be’t mine to prolong a humbler song—

  The song of the woodman’s axe!

’Tis meet to sing of th’ lowliest thing

  That graces the reign of Peace,

And add our praise, in hearty lays,

  Or prayers for bright increase.


In the ruddy flood of battle’s blood

  Its splendor ne’er was dimmed,

For a gentler fame awaits its name

  Than e’er the soldier hymned.

Like a pioneer, with voice of cheer,

  It breaks the forest’s gloom,

And maketh the earth give joyous birth,

  And like a garden bloom!


And the palace dome, or peasant’s home,

  It rears with brave command;

For no towering oak its lusty stroke

  Could ever yet withstand.

Ho! the axe is king of the wildwood ring,

  And of the lordly trees,

For before his blow they bow them low

  That laugh at the mountain breeze.


And his trophies bright are truth and light,

  And Plenty’s golden store;

For no drop of teen e’er dims the sheen

  That flashed in days of yore!

Then praise to the king of the wildwood ring,

  The woodman’s shining axe;

For a gentler fame awaits its name

  Than the sword or Conquest’s tracks.








The analysis of the dreaming faculty has never yet been made. The nearest approach to it is in our own time, and by the doctors of Phrenology. The suggestion of a plurality of mental attributes, and of their independence, one of the other, affords a key to some of the difficulties of the subject, without altogether enabling us to penetrate the sanctuary. Many difficulties remain to be overcome, if we rely upon the ordinary modes of thinking. My own notion is, simply, that the condition of sleep is one which by no means affects the mental nature. I think it probable that the mind, accustomed to exercise, thinks on, however deep may be the sleep of the physical man; that the highest exercise of the thinking faculty—that which involves the imagination—is, perhaps, never more acutely free to work out its problems, than when unembarrassed by the cares and anxieties of the temperament and form; and that dreaming is neither more nor less than habitual thought, apart from the ordinary restraints of humanity, of which the memory, at waking, retains a more or less distinct consciousness. This thought may or may not have been engendered by the topics which have impressed or interested us during the day; but this is not necessary, nor is it inevitable. We dream precisely as we think, with suggestions arising to the mind in sleep, spontaneously, as they do continually when awake, without any special provocation; and our dreams, in all probability, did not our memory fail us at awaking, would possess that coherence, proportion and mutual relation of parts, which the ordinary use of the ratiocinative faculties requires. I have no sort of doubt that the sleep of the physical man may be perfect, even while the mind is at work, in a high state of activity, and even excitement in its mighty store-house. The eye may be shut, the ear closed, the tongue sealed, the taste inappreciative, and the nerves of touch locked up in the fast embrace of unconsciousness, while thought, fancy, imagination, comparison and causality, are all busy in the most keen inquiries, and in the most wonderful creations. But my purpose is not now to insist upon these phenomena, and my speculations are only meant properly to introduce a vision of my own; one of those wild, strange, foreign fancies which sometimes so unexpectedly people and employ our slumbers—coherent, seemingly, in all its parts, yet as utterly remote as can well be imagined from the topics of daily experience and customary reflection.

I had probably been asleep a couple of hours, when I was awakened with some oppressive mental sensation. I was conscious that I had been dreaming, and that I had seen a crowd of persons, either in long procession, or engaged in some great state ceremonial. But of the particulars—the place, the parties, the purpose, or the period, I had not the most distant recollection. I was conscious, however, of an excited pulse, and of a feeling so restless, as made me, for a moment, fancy that I had fever. Such, however, was not the case. I rose, threw on my robe de chambre, and went to the window. The moon was in her meridian; the whole landscape was flickering with the light silvery haze with which she carpeted her pathway. From the glossy surface of the orange leaves immediately beneath the window, glinted a thousand diamond-like points of inexpressible brightness; while over all the fields was spread a fleecy softness, that was doubly pure and delicate in contact with the sombre foliage of the great forest, to the very foot of which it stretched. There was nothing in the scene before me that was not at once gentle and beautiful; nothing which, by the most remote connection, could possibly suggest an idea of darkness or of terror. I gazed upon the scene only for a few moments. The night was cold, and a sudden shivering chillness which it sent through all my frame, counseled me to get back to bed with all possible expedition. I did so, but was not successful in wooing the return of those slumbers which had been so unusually banished from mine eyes. For more than an hour I lay tossing and dissatisfied, with my thoughts flitting from subject to subject with all the caprice of an April butterfly. When I again slept, however, I was again conscious of a crowd. A multitude of objects passed in prolonged bodies before my sight. Troops of glittering forms then occupied the canvas, one succeeding to the other regularly, but without any individuality of object or distinct feature. But I could catch at intervals a bright flash, as of a plume or jewel, of particular size and splendor, leading me to the conviction that what I beheld was the progress of some great state ceremonial, or the triumphal march of some well-appointed army. But whether the procession moved under the eagles of the Roman, the horse-tails of the Ottoman, or the lion banner of England, it was impossible to ascertain. I could distinguish none of the ensigns of battle. The movements were all slow and regular. There was nothing of strife or hurry—none of the clamor of invasion or exultation of victory. The spectacle passed on with a measured pomp, as if it belonged to some sad and gloomy rite, where the splendor rather increased the solemnity to which it was simply tributary.



The scene changed even as I gazed. The crowd had disappeared. The vast multitude was gone from sight, and mine eye, which had strained after the last of their retreating shadows, now dropped its lids on vacancy. Soon, however, instead of the great waste of space and sky, which left me without place of rest for sight, I beheld the interior of a vast and magnificent hall, most like the interior of some lofty cathedral. The style of the building was arabesque, at once richly and elaborately wrought, and sombre. The pointed arches, reached by half-moon involutions, with the complex carvings and decorations of cornice, column and ceiling, at once carried me back to those wondrous specimens which the art of the Saracen has left rather for our admiration than rivalry. The apartment was surrounded by a double row of columns; slender shafts, which seemed rather the antennæ of graceful plants than bulks and bodies of stone and marble, rising for near thirty feet in height, then gradually spreading in numerous caryatides, resembling twisted and unfolding serpents, to the support of the vast roof. All appearance of bulk, of cumbrousness, even of strength, seemed lost in the elaborate delicacy with which these antennæ stretched themselves from side to side, uniting the several arches in spans of the most airy lightness and beauty. The great dome for which they furnished the adequate support, rose too high in the but partial light which filled the hall, to enable me to gather more than an imperfect idea of its character and workmanship. But of its great height the very incapacity to define its character afforded me a sufficient notion. Where the light yielded the desired opportunity, I found the flowery beauty of the architecture, on every hand, to be alike inimitable. To describe it would be impossible. A thousand exquisite points of light, the slenderest beams, seemed to depend, like so many icicles, from arch and elevation—to fringe the several entrances and windows—to hang from every beam and rafter; and over all, to cast an appearance so perfectly aerial, as to make me doubtful, at moments, whether the immense interior which I saw them span, with the massive but dusky ceiling which they were intended to sustain, were not, in fact, a little world of wood, with the blue sky dimly overhead, a realm of vines and flowers, with polished woodland shafts, lavishly and artfully accumulated in the open air, so as to produce, in an imperfect light, a delusive appearance of architectural weight, magnificence and majesty. An immense avenue, formed of columns thus embraced and bound together by the most elaborate and fantastic carvings, linked vines, boughs, flowers and serpents, opened before me, conducting the eye through far vistas of the same description, thus confirming the impression of cathedral avenues of forest. The eye, beguiled along these passages, wandered into others quite as interminable, with frequent glimpses into lateral ranges quite as wonderful and ample, until the dim perspective was shut, not because of the termination of the passage, but because of the painful inability in the sight any further to pursue it. Each of these avenues had its decorations, similarly elaborate and ornate with the rest of the interior. Vines and flowers, stars and wreaths, crosses and circles—with such variety of form and color as the kaleidoscope only might produce in emulation of the fancy—were all present, but symmetrically duplicated, so as to produce an equal correspondence on each side, figure answering to figure. But these decorations were made tributary to other objects. Numerous niches opened to the sight, as you penetrated the mighty avenue, in which stood noble and commanding forms;—statues of knights in armor; of princes; great men who had swayed nations; heroes, who had encountered dragons for the safety of the race; and saintly persons, who had called down blessings from heaven upon the nation in the hour of its danger and its fear. The greater number of these stood erect as when in life; but some sat, some reclined, and others knelt; but all, save for the hue of the marble in which they were wrought—so exquisite was the art which they had employed—would have seemed to be living even then. Around the apartment which I have been describing, were double aisles, or rather avenues, formed by sister columns, corresponding in workmanship and style, if not in size, with those which sustained the dome. These were deep and sepulchral in shadow, but withal very attractive and lovely places; retreats of shade, and silence, and solemn beauty; autumnal walks, where the heart which had been wounded by the shafts and sorrows of the world, might fly, and be secure; and where the form, wandering lonely among the long shadows of grove and pillar, and in the presence of noble and holy images of past worth and virtue, might still maintain the erect stature which belongs to elevated fancies, to purest purposes, and great designs forever working in the soul.

But it would be idle to attempt to convey, unless by generalities, any definite idea of the vast and magnificent theatre, or of that singular and sombre beauty with which I now found myself surrounded. Enough, that, while I was absorbed, with my whole imagination deeply excited by the architectural grandeur which I surveyed, I had grown heedless of the progress of events among certain human actors—if I may be thus permitted to designate the creatures of a vision—which had meanwhile taken their places in little groups in a portion of the ample area. While mine eyes had been uplifted in the contemplation of things inanimate, it appears that a human action was in progress on a portion of the scene below. I was suddenly aroused by a stir and bustle, followed by a faint murmur, as of applauding voices, which at length reached my ears, and diverted my gaze from the remote and lofty, to the rich tesselated pavement of the apartment. If the mere splendor of the structure had so fastened upon my imagination, what can I say of the scene which now commanded my attention! There was the pomp of courts, the pride of majesty, the glory of armor, the grace and charm of aristocratic beauty, in all her plumage, to make me forgetful of all other display. I now beheld 101 groups of noble persons, clad in courtly dresses, in knightly armor, sable and purple, with a profusion of gold and jewels, rich scarfs, and plumes of surpassing splendor. Other groups presented me with a most imposing vision of that gorgeous church, whose mitred prelates could place their feet upon the necks of mightiest princes, and sway, for good or evil, the destinies of conflicting nations. There were priests clad in flowing garments, courtiers in silks, and noblest dames, who had swayed in courts from immemorial time. Their long and rustling trains were upborne by damsels and pages, lovely enough, and richly enough arrayed, to be apt ministers in the very courts of Love himself. A chair of state, massive, and richly draped in purple and gold, with golden insignia, over which hung the jeweled tiara of sovereignty, was raised upon a dais some five feet above the level of the crowd. This was filled by a tall and slender person, to whom all made obeisance as to an imperial master. He was habited in sable, a single jewel upon his brow, bearing up a massive shock of feathers as black and glossy as if wrought out of sparkling coal. The air of majesty in his action, the habitual command upon his brow, left me in no doubt of his sovereign state, even had the obeisance of the multitude been wanting. But he looked not as if long destined to hold sway in mortal provinces. His person was meagre, as if wasted by disease. His cheeks were pale and hollow; while a peculiar brightness of the eyes shone in painful contrast with the pale and ghastly color of his face. Behind his chair stood one who evidently held the position of a favorite and trusted counselor. He was magnificently habited, with a profusion of jewels, which nevertheless added but little to the noble air and exquisite symmetry of his person. At intervals he could be seen to bend over to the ear of the prince, as if whispering him in secret. This show of intimacy, if pleasing to his superior, was yet evidently of different effect upon many others in the assembly. The costume of the place was that of the Norman sway in England, before the Saxons had quite succeeded,—through the jealousy entertained by the kings, of their nobles,—in obtaining a share of those indulgences which finally paved the way to their recognition by the conquerors. Yet, even in this respect of costume, I was conscious of some discrepancies. Some of the habits worn were decidedly Spanish; but as these were mingled with others which bore conclusive proof of the presence of the wearers in the wars of the Crusades, it was not improbable that they had been adopted as things of fancy, from a free communion of the parties with knights of Spain whom they had encountered in the Holy Land.

But I was not long permitted to bestow my regards on a subject so subordinate as dress. The scene was evidently no mere spectacle. Important and adverse interests were depending—wild passions were at work, and the action of a very vivid drama was about to open upon me. A sudden blast of a trumpet penetrated the hall. I say blast, though the sounds were faint as if subdued by distance. But the note itself, and the instrument could not have been mistaken. A stir ensued among the spectators. The crowd divided before an outer door, and those more distant bent forward, looking in this direction with an eager anxiety which none seemed disposed to conceal. They were not long kept in suspense. A sudden unfolding of the great valves of the entrance followed, when a rush was made from without. The tread of heavy footsteps, the waving of tall plumes, and a murmur from the multitude, announced the presence of other parties for whom the action of the drama was kept in abeyance. The crowd opened from right to left, and one of the company stood alone, with every eye of the vast assemblage fixed curiously upon his person.



And well, apart from every consideration yet to be developed, might they gaze upon the princely form that now stood erect, and with something approaching to defiance in his air and manner, in the centre of the vast assemblage. He was habited in chain armor, the admirable work, in all probability, of the shops of Milan. This, though painted or stained thoroughly black, yet threw out a glossy lustre of incredible brightness. Upon his breast, as if the love token of some noble damsel, a broad scarf of the most delicate blue was seen to float. A cap of velvet, with a double loop in front, bearing a very large brilliant, from which rose a bunch of sable plumes, was discarded from his brows the moment that he stood within the royal presence. He stood for a brief space, seeming to survey the scene, then advanced with a bold and somewhat rapid step, as if a natural spirit of fearlessness had been stimulated into eagerness by a consciousness of wrong and a just feeling of indignation. His face was scarcely less noble than his form and manner, but it was marked by angry passions—was red and swollen—and as he passed onward to the foot of the throne, he glanced fiercely on either hand, as if seeking for an enemy. In spite of the fearlessness of his progress, I could now perceive that he was under constraint and in duresse. A strong body of halberdiers closed upon his course, and evidently stood prepared and watchful of his every movement. As he approached the throne, the several groups gave way before him, and he stood, with unobstructed vision, in the immediate presence of the monarch. For an instant he remained erect, with a mien unsubdued and almost haughty, while a low murmur—as I fancied, of indignation—rose in various portions of the hall. The face of the king himself seemed suddenly flushed, and a lively play of the muscles of his countenance led me to believe that he was about to give utterance to his anger; but, at this moment, the stranger sunk gracefully but proudly upon his knee, and, bending his forehead, with a studied humility in his prostration, disarmed, if it had been felt, the indignation of his sovereign. This done, he rose to his feet with a manly ease, and stood silent, in an attitude of expectation, but with a calm, martial erectness, as rigid as if cut from the inflexible rock.

The king spoke, but the words were inaudible to 102 my ears. There was a murmur from various parts of the assembly. Several voices followed that of the monarch, but of these I could not comprehend the purport. I could only judge of the character of what was said by its startling effect upon the stranger. If excited before, he seemed to be almost maddened now. His eyes followed the murmuring voices from side to side of the assembly, with a fearful flashing energy, which made them dilate, as if endangering the limits of their reddened sockets. A like feverish and impatient fury threw his form into spasmodic action. His figure seemed to rise and swell, towering above the rest. His arms were stretched in the direction of the assailing voices. His clenched fist first seemed to threaten the speakers with instant violence. Unintimidated by the presence in which he stood, his appearance was that of a subject, not only too strong for his superior, but too confident and presumptuous for his own self-subjection, even in the moment of greatest peril to himself.

He resumed his composure at last, and the murmur ceased around him. There was deep silence, and the eyes of the stranger were fixed rigidly upon those of his prince. The latter was evidently moved. His hand was extended—something he spoke which I again lost; but, strange to say, the reply of the stranger came sharply and distinctly to my ear.

“Swear! Why should I swear? Should I call upon the Holy Evangel as my witness, when I see not my accuser? Let him appear. Let him look me in the face, if there be lord or knight in this assembly so bold, and tell me that I am guilty of this treason. Sire! I challenge my accuser. I have no other answer to the charge!”



The lips of the King moved. The nobleman who stood behind his throne, and whom I conceived to be his favorite, bent down and received his orders; then disappeared behind one of the columns whose richly decorated, but slender shafts, rose up directly behind him, like some graceful stems of the forest, over which the wildering vine, and the gaudy parasite clambers with an embrace that kills. But a few moments elapsed when the favorite re-appeared. He was accompanied by a person, whose peculiar form and aspect will deserve especial description.

In that hall, in the presence of princes, surrounded by knights and nobles of the proudest in the land, the person newly come—though seemingly neither knight nor noble, was one of the most lofty in his carriage, and most imposing and impressive in his look and manner. He was not only taller than the race of men in general, but he was obviously taller than any in that select circle by which he was surrounded. Nor did his features misbeseem his person. These were singularly noble, and of Italian cast and character. His face was large, and of the most perfect oval. Though that of a man who had probably seen and suffered under sixty winters, it still bore the proofs of a beauty once remarkable. It still retained a youthful freshness, which spoke for a conscience free from remorse and self-reproach. His eyes were of a mild, but holily expressive blue; and, beneath their rather thin white brows, were declarative of more than human benevolence. His forehead was very large and lofty, of great breadth and compass, in the regions of ideality and sublimity, as well as causality; while his hair, thick still, and depending from behind his head in numerous waving curls, was, like his beard, of the most silvery whiteness. This was spread, massively, upon his breast, which it covered almost to the waist. His complexion was very pale, but of a clear whiteness, and harmonized sweetly with the antique beauty and power of his head. His costume differed in style, texture and stuff, entirely from that which prevailed in the assembly. A loose white robe, which extended from his shoulders to the ground, was bound about his body by a belt of plain Spanish leather, and worn with a grace and nobleness perfectly majestical. His feet were clothed in Jewish sandals. But there was nothing proud or haughty in his majesty. On the contrary, it was in contrast with the evident humility in his eye and gesture, that his dignity of bearing betrayed itself. This seemed to be as much the fruit of pure and elevated thoughts, calm and resigned, as of that superior physical organization which made this aged man tower as greatly above the rest, in person, as he certainly did in air and manner.

He advanced, as he appeared, to the foot of the throne, gracefully sunk before it, then rising, stood in quiet, as awaiting the royal command to speak. His appearance seemed to fill the assembly with eager curiosity. A sudden hush prevailed as he approached, the natural result of that awe which great superiority usually inspires in the breast of ignorance. There was but one face among the spectators that seemed to betray no curiosity as he came in sight. This was that of the accused. With the first coming of the ancient man, I had instinctively fixed my gaze upon the countenance of the nobleman. I could easily discern that his lips were compressed as if by sudden effort, while his usually florid features were covered with a momentary paleness. This emotion, with the utter absence of that air of curiosity which marked every other visage, struck me, at once, as somewhat significant of guilt.

“Behold thy accuser!” exclaimed the sovereign.

“He! the bookworm!—the dreamer!—the mad-man!—sorcerer to the vulgar, but less than dotard to the wise! Does your majesty look to a star-gazer for such evidence as will degrade with shame the nobles of your realm? Sire!—if no sorcerer, this old man is verily distraught! He is lunatic or vile—a madman, or a bought servitor of Satan!”

The venerable man thus scornfully denounced, stood, meanwhile, looking sorrowful and subdued, but calm and unruffled, at the foot of the dais. His eye rested a moment upon the speaker, then turned, as if to listen to that speech, with which the favorite, behind the throne of the monarch, appeared to reply to the language of the accused. This I did not hear, nor yet that which the sovereign addressed to the 103 same person. But the import might be divined by the answer of the accused.

“And I say, your majesty, that what he hath alleged is false—all a false and bitter falsehood, devised by cunning and malice to work out the purposes of hate. My word against his—my gauntlet against the world. I defy him to the proof! I defy all my accusers!”

“And he shall have the truth, your majesty;” was the firm, clear answer with which the venerable man responded to this defiance. His tones rang through the assembly like those of a sweet bell in the wilderness.—“My life, Sire, is sworn to the truth! I can speak no other language! That I have said nothing falsely of this lord, I invoke the attestation of the Lord of all. I have had his sacred volume brought into this presence. You shall know, Sire, what I believe, by what I swear!”

He made a sign, even while he spoke, to a little girl whom I had not before seen, but who had evidently followed him into the assembly. She now approached, bearing in her hands one of those finely illuminated manuscripts of an early day of Christian history in Europe, which are now worth their weight in gold. I could just perceive, as he opened the massive volume, by its heavy metallic clasps, that the characters were strange, and readily conjectured them to be Hebrew. The work, from what he said, and the use to which he applied it, I assumed to be the Holy Scriptures. He received it reverently from the child, placed it deliberately upon one of the steps of the dais, then knelt before it, his venerable head for a moment, being bowed to the very floor. Then raising his eyes, but without rising from his position, he placed one hand upon this volume, raised the other to heaven, and, with a deep and solemn voice, called upon God and the Holy Evangelists, to witness that what he had spoken, and was about to speak, was “the truth, and the truth only—spoken with no malice—no wicked or evil intent—and rather to defeat and prevent the evil designs of the person he accused.” In this posture, and thus affirming, he proceeded to declare that “the accused had applied to him for a potent poison which should have the power of usurping life slowly, and without producing any of those striking effects upon the outward man, as would induce suspicion of criminal practice.” He added, with other particulars, that “the accused had invited him, under certain temptations, which had been succeeded by threats, to become one of a party to his designs, the victim of which was to be his majesty then sitting upon the throne.”



Such was the tenor of the asseverations which he made, fortified by numerous details, all tending strongly to confirm the truth of his accusations, his own testimony once being relied on. There was something so noble in this man’s action, so delicate, so impressive, so simple, yet so grand; and the particulars which he gave were all so probably arrayed, so well put together, and so seemingly in confirmation of other circumstances drawn from the testimony of other parties, that all around appeared fully impressed with the most perfect conviction that his accusation was justly made. A short but painful silence followed his narration, which seemed, for an instant, to confound the guilty noble. The sad countenance of the monarch deepened to severity, while a smile of triumph and exultation rose to that of the favorite behind his throne. At this sight the accused person recovered all his audacity. With half-choking utterance, and features kindling with fury rather than faltering with fear, he demanded,

“Am I to be heard, your majesty?”

A wave of the monarch’s hand gave him the desired permission, and his reply burst forth like a torrent. He gave the lie to his accuser, whom he denounced as an impostor, as one who was the creature of his and the king’s enemies, and tampering, himself, with the sovereign’s life while pretending to minister to his ailments. He ridiculed, with bitterness and scorn, the notion that any faith should be given to the statements, though even offered on oath, of one whom he affirmed to be an unbeliever and a Jew; and, as if to crown his defense with a seal no less impressive than that of his accuser, he advanced to the foot of the throne, grasped the sacred volume from the hands by which it was upheld, and kneeling, with his lips pressed upon the opened pages, he imprecated upon himself, if his denial were not the truth, all the treasured wrath and thunder in the stores of Heaven!

The accuser heard, with uplifted hands and looks of holy horror, the wild and terrible invocation. Almost unconsciously his lips parted with the comment,

“God have mercy upon your soul, my lord, for you have spoken a most awful perjury!”

The king looked bewildered, the favorite behind him dissatisfied, and the whole audience apparently stunned by equal incertitude and excitement. The eyes of all parties fluctuated between the accused and the accuser. They stood but a few paces asunder. The former looked like a man who only with a great struggle succeeded in controlling his fury. The latter stood sorrowful, but calm. The little girl who had brought in the holy volume stood before him, with one of his hands resting upon her head. Her features greatly resembled his own. She looked terrified; her eyes fastened ever upon the face of her father’s enemy with a countenance of equal curiosity and suspicion. Some conversation, the sense of which did not reach me, now ensued between the king and two of his counselors, to which his favorite was a party. The former again addressed the accuser.

“Have you any other testimony but that which you yourself offer of the truth of your accusation.”

“None, your majesty. I have no witness of my truth but God, and it is not for vain man to prescribe to him at what seasons his testimony should be given. In bringing this accusation, my purpose was not the destruction of the criminal, but the safety of my sovereign; and I am the more happy that no conviction can now follow from my charge, as from the dreadful oath which he has just taken, he places 104 it out of the power of human tribunal to resolve between us. For the same reason, sire, he is in no condition to suffer death! Let him live! It is enough for me that your majesty is safe from the present, and has been warned against all future danger at his hands.”

“But not enough for me!” cried the accused, breaking in impetuously. “I have been charged with a foul crime; I must free my scutcheon from the shame. I will not rest beneath it. If this Jewish sorcerer hath no better proof than his own false tongue, I demand from your majesty the wager of battle! I, too, invoke God and the blessed Jesu, in testimony of my innocence. This enemy hath slandered me; I will wash out the slander with his blood! I demand the trial, sire, his arm against mine, according to the laws and custom of this realm.”

“It cannot be denied!” was the cry from many voices. The favorite looked grave and troubled. The eyes of the king were fixed sadly upon the venerable accuser. The latter seemed to understand the expression.

“I am not a man of blood, your majesty. Strife hath long been banished from this bosom; carnal weapons have long been discarded from these hands.”

“Let him find a champion!” was the fierce answer of the accused.

“And of what avail to me,” returned the accuser, “the brute valor of the hireling who sells for wages the strength of his manhood, and perils for gain the safety of his life. Little should I hope from the skill of such as he, opposed in combat to one of the greatest warriors of the realm.”

“Ah, sorcerer! thou fearest!” was the exulting cry of the accused; “but, if thy cause be that of truth, as thou hast challenged the Most High to witness, what hast thou to fear? The stars which thou searchest nightly, will they not do battle in thy behalf?”

“Methinks,” said the favorite, who now advanced from behind the throne, “methinks, old man, thou hast but too little reliance on the will and power of God to assist thee in this matter. It is for him to strengthen the feeblest, where he is innocent, and in the ranks of war to do successful battle with the best and bravest. Is it not written, ‘the race is not always to the swift, nor the triumph to the strong?’”

“Ah! do I not know this, my lord. Do not think that I question the power of the Lord to do marvels, whenever it becomes his will to do so; but who is it, believing in God’s might and mercy, flings himself idly from the steep, with the hope that an angel’s wings shall be sent to bear him up. I have been taught by the faith which I profess, to honor the Lord our God, and not to tempt him; and I do not readily believe that we may command the extraordinary manifestations of his power by any such vain and uncertain issue as that which you would now institute. I believe not the truth is inevitably sure to follow the wager and trial of battle, nor will I lean on the succor of any hireling weapon to avouch for mine.”

“It need be no hireling sword, old man. The brave and the noble love adventure, for its own sake, in the paths of danger; and it may be that thou shalt find some one, even in this assembly, noble as him thou accusest, and not less valiant with his weapon, who, believing in thy truth, shall be willing to do battle in thy behalf.”

“Thyself, perchance!” cried the accused, impetuously, and turning a fiery glance upon the speaker. In this glance it seemed to me that I could discover a far greater degree of bitterness and hate than in any which he had shown to his accuser. “It is thyself that would do this battle? Ha! thou art he, then, equally noble and not less valiant art thou? Be it so! It will rejoice me shouldst thou venture thy body in this quarrel. But I know thee—thou lovest it too well—thou durst not.”

“Choose me for thy champion, old man,” was the further speech of the favorite, with a difficult effort to be calm. “I will do battle for thee, and with God’s mercy, sustain the right in thy behalf.”

“Thou shalt not!” exclaimed the king, vehemently, but feebly, half rising as he spoke, and turning to the favorite. “Thou shalt not! I command thee mix not in this matter.”

More was said, but in such a feeble tone that they failed to reach my senses. When the king grew silent, the favorite bowed with submissive deference, and sunk again behind the throne. A scornful smile passed over the lips of the accused, who looked, with a bitter intelligence of gaze, upon a little group, seemingly his friends and supporters, who had partly grouped themselves around him. Following his glance, a moment after, toward the royal person, I was attracted by a movement, though for a single instant only, of the uplifted hand of the favorite. It was a sign to the accused, the former withdrawing the glove from his right hand, a moment after, and flinging it, with a significant action, to the floor behind him. The accused whispered to a page in waiting, who immediately stole away and disappeared from sight. But a little while elapsed when I beheld him approach the spot where the glove had fallen, recover it adroitly, and convey it, unperceived, into his bosom. All this by-play, though no doubt apparent to many in the assembly, was evidently unseen and unsuspected by the king. I inferred the rank luxuriance of the practice of chivalry in this region, from the nicety with which the affair was conducted, and the forbearance of all those by whom it had been witnessed, to make any report of what they had beheld. The discussion was resumed by the accuser.

“I am aware, your majesty, that by the laws and practice of your realm, the wager of battle is one that may be freely challenged by any one accused of treason, or other crime against the state, against whom there shall be no witness but the accuser. It is not the fear of danger which makes me unwilling to seek this conflict; it is the fear of doing wrong. Though the issues of battle are in the hands of the Lord, yet who shall persuade me that he has decreed the combat to take place. Now I do confess that I regard it as unholy, any invocation of the God of Peace, to be a witness in a strife which his better 105 lessons teach us to abhor—a strife grossly at variance with his most settled and divine ordinances.”

“I am grieved, old man, to hear you speak this language,” was the grave censure of one who, from his garments, seemed to be very high in authority, and the church. “What thou sayest is in direct reproach of holy church, which has frequently called in the assistance of mortal force and human weapons to put down the infidel, to crush the wrong-doer, and to restore that peace which can only owe her continued existence to the presence ever of a just readiness for war. Methinks thou hast scarcely shown thyself enough reverent in this, thy bold opinion.”

“Holy father, I mean not offence! I do not doubt that war, with short-sightedness of human wisdom, has appeared to secure the advantages of peace. I believe that God has endowed us with a strength for the struggle, and with a wisdom that will enable us to pursue it with success. These we are to employ when necessary for the protection of the innocent, and the rescue and safety of those who are themselves unwilling to do harm. But I am unwilling to believe that immortal principles—the truth of man, and the value of his assurances—are to depend upon the weight of his own blows, or the address with which he can ward off the assaults of another. Were this the case, then would the strong-limbed and brutal soldier be always the sole arbiter of truth, and wisdom, and all moral government.”

We need not pursue the argument. It has long since been settled, though with partial results only to humanity, as well by the Pagan as the Christian philosopher. But, however ingenious, true, or eloquent, was the venerable speaker, on this occasion, his arguments were entirely lost upon that assembly. He himself soon perceived that the effect was unfavorable to his cause, and exposed his veracity to question. With a proper wisdom, therefore, he yielded promptly to the current. But first he asked:—

“And what, may it please your majesty, if I decline this ordeal?”

“Death!” was the reply of more than one stern voice in the assembly. “Death by fire, by the burning pincers, by the tortures of the screw and rack.”

The venerable man replied calmly.

“Life is a duty! Life is precious!” he spoke musingly, looking down as he spoke, upon the little girl who stood before him, while the big tears gathered in his eyes as he gazed.

“Do you demand a champion?” was the inquiry of the king.

“No, Sire! If, in behalf of my truth, this battle must be fought, its dangers must be mine only.”

“Thine!” exclaimed the favorite.

“Ay, my lord, mine. None other than myself must encounter this peril.”

A murmur of ridicule passed through the assembly. The accused laughed outright, as the exulting warrior laughs, with his captive naked beneath his weapon. A brief pause followed, and a visible anxiety prevailed among the audience. Their ridicule afforded to the accuser sufficient occasion for reply:

“This murmur of surprise and ridicule that I hear on every hand, is, of itself, a sufficient commentary upon this trial of truth by the wager of battle. It seems to all little less than madness, that a feeble old man, like myself, even though in the cause of right, should oppose himself to the most valiant warrior in the kingdom. Yet, if it be true that God will make himself manifest in the issue, what matters it whether I be old or young, strong or weak, well-skilled or ignorant in arms? If there be a just wisdom in this mode of trial, the feeblest rush, in maintenance of the truth, were mighty against the steel-clad bosom of the bravest. I take the peril. I will meet this bold criminal, nothing fearing, and will, in my own person, engage in the battle which is thus forced upon me. But I know not the use of lance, or sword, or battle-axe. These weapons are foreign to my hands. Is it permitted me to use such implements of defense as my own skill and understanding may invent, and I may think proper to employ?”

“Thou shalt use no evil arts, old man,” exclaimed the Churchman who had before spoken, anticipating the answer of the monarch. “No sorcery, no charms, no spells,—no accursed devices of Satan. I warn thee, if thou art found guilty of arts like these thou shalt surely perish by fire.”

“None of these, Holy Father, shall I employ. My arts shall be those only, the principles of which I shall proclaim to thyself, or to any noble gentleman of the king’s household. My weapons shall be those only which a human intelligence may prepare. They belong to the studies which I pursue—to the same studies which have enabled me to arrive at truths, some of which thou thyself hast been pleased to acknowledge, and which, until I had discovered them, had been hidden from the experience of men. It cannot be held unreasonable and unrighteous that I employ the weapons the virtues of which I know, when my enemy uses those for which he is renowned?”

Some discussion followed, the demand of the accuser being strenuously resisted by the friends of the accused.

“The weapons for knightly encounter,” said they, “have long since been acknowledged. These are sword, and battle-axe, and spear.”

“But I am no knight,” was the reply; “and as it is permitted to the citizen to do battle with staff and cudgel, which are his wonted weapons, so may it be permitted to me to make use of those which are agreeable to my strength, experience, and the genius of my profession.”

Some demur followed from the churchman.

“Holy father,” replied the accuser, “the sacred volume should be your guide as it is mine. My claim is such as seems already in one famous instance, to have met the most decisive sanction of God himself.”

Here he unfolded the pages of the Holy Scriptures.

“Goliah,” said he, “was a Philistine knight, who came into battle with the panoply of his order. David appeared with staff, and sling, and stone, as was proper to the shepherd. He rejected the armor 106 with which Saul would have arrayed him for the combat. The reproach of the Philistine knight comprises the objection which is offered here—‘Am I a dog,’ said Goliah, ‘that thou comest to me with staves?’ The answer of David, O king! shall be mine: ‘And all this assembly shall know that the Lord saveth not with sword and spear; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give you into our hands.’—Such were his words—they are mine. God will deliver me from the rage of mine enemy. I will smite him through all his panoply, and in spite of shield and spear.”

He spoke with a momentary kindling of his eyes, which was soon succeeded by an expression of sadness.

“And yet, O king! I would be spared this trial. My heart loves not strife. My soul shrinks in horror from the shedding of human blood. Require not this last proof at my hands. Suffer me to keep my conscience white, and clear of this sacrifice. Let this unhappy man live; for as surely as we strive together, so surely must he perish.”

“Now this passeth all belief, as it passeth all human endurance!” exclaimed the accused with irrepressible indignation. “I claim the combat, O king, on any condition. Let him come as he will, with what weapons he may, though forged in the very armory of Satan. My talisman is in the holy cross, and the good sword buckled at my thigh by the holiest prince in Christendom, will not fail me against the devil and all his works. I demand the combat!”

“Be ye both ready within three days!” said the king.

“I submit,” replied the aged man. “I trust in the mercy of God to sustain me against this trial, and to acquit me of its awful consequences.”

“Ready, ay, ready!” was the answer of the accused, as with his hand he clutched fiercely the handle of his sword, until the steel rung again in the iron scabbard.



The scene underwent a sudden change, and I now found myself in a small and dimly-lighted apartment, which seemed designed equally for a studio and a laboratory of art. The walls were surrounded by enormous cases, on the shelves of which were massive scrolls of vellum, huge parchment manuscripts, and volumes fastened with clasps of brass and silver. Some of these lay open. Charts hung wide marked with strange characters. Frames of ebony were thus suspended also bearing the signs of the zodiac. Other furniture, of quaint and strange fashion, seemed to show conclusively that the possessor pursued the seductive science of astrology. He had other pursuits—a small furnace, the coals of which were ignited, occupied one corner of the chamber, near which stood a table covered with retorts and receivers, cylinders and gauging-glasses, and all the other paraphernalia which usually belong to the analytic worker in chemistry. The old man, and the young girl described in the previous scene, were, at first, the only occupants of the apartment. But a few moments elapsed, however, when an inner door was thrown open, and a third party appeared, closely enveloped in a cloak of sable. This he threw aside, and I discovered him to be the same person who had been the chief counselor of the king, and whom I supposed to be his favorite. At his entrance the damsel disappeared. The stranger then, somewhat abruptly, began in the following manner:

“Why, O why did you not choose me for your champion?”

“And why, my lord, expose you to a conflict with one of the bravest warriors in all the realm?”

“He is brave, but I fear him not; besides, he who fights against guilt hath a strength of arm which supplies all deficiencies. But it is not too late. I may still supply your place.”

“Forgive me, dear lord, but I have made my election.”

“Alas! old man, why are you thus obstinate? He will slay you at the first encounter.”

“And if he does, what matter! I have but a brief space to live, according to the common allotment. He hath many, which were well employed devoted to repentance. It were terrible, indeed, that he should be hurried before the awful tribunal of Heaven with all the blackness in his soul, with all his sins unpurged, upon his conscience.”

“Why, this is veriest madness. Think you what will follow your submission and defeat? He will pursue his conspiracy. Others will do what you have refused. He will drag other and bitter spirits into his scheme. He will bring murder into our palaces, and desolation into our cities. Know you not the man as I know him? Shall he be suffered to escape, when the hand of God has clearly shown you that his purposes are to be overthrown, and his crime to be punished through your agency?”

“And it shall be so, my dear lord. It is not my purpose to submit. The traitor shall be met in battle.”

“But by thyself. Why not a champion? I am ready.”

“Greatly, indeed, do I thank and honor thee, my lord; but it cannot be!”

“Methinks there is some touch of insanity about thee, old man, in spite of all thy wisdom. Thou canst not hope to contend, in sooth, against this powerful warrior. He will hurl thee to the earth with the first thrust of his heavy lance; or smite thee down to death with a single blow of battle-axe or dagger.”

“Hear me, my lord, and have no fear. Thou knowest not the terrible powers which I possess, nor should any know, but that this necessity compels me to employ them. I will slay my enemy and thine. He cannot harm me. He will perish helplessly ere his weapon shall be twice lifted to affront me.”

“Thou meanest not to employ sorcery?”

“Be assured, my lord, I shall use a carnal agent only. The instrument which I shall take with me to battle, though of terrible and destructive power, shall be as fully blessed of Heaven, as any in your mortal armory.”

107 “Be it so! I am glad that thou art so confident; and yet, let me entreat thee to trust thy battle to my hands.”

“No, my dear lord, no! To thee there would be danger—to me, none. I thank thee for thy goodness, and will name thee in my prayers to Heaven.”

We need not pursue their dialogue, which was greatly prolonged, and included much other matter which did not concern the event before us. When the nobleman took his departure, the damsel reappeared. The old man took her in his embrace, and while the tears glistened upon his snowy beard, he thus addressed her:

“But for thee—for thee, chiefly—daughter of the beloved and sainted child in Heaven, I had spared myself this trial. This wretched man should live wert thou not present, making it needful that I should still prolong to the last possible moment, the remnant of my days. Were I to perish, where wert thou? What would be the safety of the sweet one and the desolate? The insect would descend upon the bud, and it would lose scent and freshness. The worm would fasten upon the flower, and a poison worse than death would prey upon its core. No! my poor Lucilla, I must live for thee, though I live not for myself. I must shed the blood of mine enemy, and spare mine own, that thou mayest not be desolate.”



While the tears of the two were yet mingling, the scene underwent a change corresponding with my anxiety for the dénouement. A vast area opened before me, surrounded by the seats and scaffolding as for a tourney, and the space was filling fast with spectators. I will not attempt to describe the splendor of the scene. Lords and ladies, in their most gorgeous attire, occupied the high places; princes were conspicuous; the people were assembled in thousands. At the sound of trumpets the king made his appearance. A grand burst of music announced that he was on his throne. Among the knights and nobles by whom he was attended, I readily distinguished “the Favorite.” He was in armor, but it was of an exceedingly simple pattern, and seemed designed for service rather than display. He looked grave and apprehensive, and his eyes were frequently turned upon the barriers, as if in anxious waiting for the champions.

The accused was the first to appear. He was soon followed, however, by the accuser, and both made their way through the crowd to the foot of the throne. As the old man approached, the favorite drew nigh, and addressed him in subdued, but earnest accents.

“It is not yet too late! Call upon me as thy champion. The king dare not refuse thee, and as I live, I will avenge mine own and thy wrongs together.”

“It cannot be, my lord,” was the reply, with a sad shake of the head. “Besides,” he continued, “I have no wrongs to avenge. I seek for safety only. It is only as my life is pledged equally to the living and the dead, that I care to struggle for it, and to save.”

The face of the favorite was clouded with chagrin. He led the way in silence to the foot of the throne, followed by the venerable man. There, the latter made obeisance, and encountered the hostile and fierce glance of his enemy, whom he regarded only with looks of sorrow and commisseration. A breathless silence pervaded the vast assembly as they beheld the white locks, the simple majesty of his face and air, and the costume—singular for such an occasion—which he wore. This did not in any degree differ from that in which he had always appeared habited before. It consisted of a loose, flowing robe of the purest white, most like, but more copious than the priestly cassock. His opponent, in complete steel, shining like the sun, with helmeted head and gauntleted hand, afforded to the spectators a most astonishing difference between the combatants. The wonder increased with their speculations. The surprise extended itself to the king, who proffered, as Saul had done to David, the proper armor of a warrior to the defenseless man. But this he steadily refused. The king, himself, condescended to remonstrate.

“This is sheer madness, old man. Would’st thou run upon thy death with uncovered head and bosom?”

“Oh! Sire, I fear not death, and feel that I am not now to die. Yet would I still implore that I may be spared this trial. Once more, I lay myself at the foot of the throne, to supplicate its mercy.”

“For thyself!” cried his enemy, with a scornful taunt.

“For myself and for thee!”—was the firm reply—“that I may be spared the pang of sending thee before the Eternal Judge, with all thy unatoned crimes upon thy head.”

The voice and words of the venerable speaker, deep and solemn, thrilled, with a sensible effect, throughout the assembly. Whence should he derive this confidence? From heaven or from hell. The conclusion to which they came, more than ever confirmed their belief in his reputed sorceries; and his words inspired a deep and silent terror among the crowd. But the accused, strong in his skill, courage and panoply of steel, if not in the justice of his cause, mocked scornfully, and defied the doom which was threatened. Some of his friends, however, shared strongly in the apprehensions of the vulgar.

“He hath no visible armor,” was their cry; “with what would he defend himself? How know we that he hath not magic arts, and devices of hell, with which he secretly arms himself?”

“Thou hast weapons—visible weapons, as I hear”—remarked the King.

“They are at hand, Sire;—they are here.”

“Thou hast dealt in no forbidden practice?”

“None, Sire, as I stand uncovered in the sight of heaven. The reverend father in God, to whom thou did’st give in charge this inquiry, is here, and will answer to your majesty. He hath heard and seen the secret of my strength—that strength which I know and declare is powerful to destroy my foe. He knows it to be a secret of mortal wisdom only, as patiently wrought out by human art and labor, as were the sword and axe of him who now seeks my 108 destruction. I have warned him already of the fearful power which they impart. I would still have him live, unharmed by me.”

“Peace, insolent!” cried the accused; “I am here, your majesty, to fight, not to prate!—to chastise, not to hearken to the speeches of this pagan sorcerer. Let his power be what he esteems it: I trust to my good sword, and to the favor of the Mother of God,—and I doubt not of this good steel, which hath been crowned with a three-fold conquest, on the plains of Saracem. I entreat that your majesty will give command for the combat.”



The eye of the venerable accuser, regarded the face of the speaker with a sad and touching solemnity; but at this moment, the little girl who had before accompanied him, was conducted into the foreground by the Archbishop. She bore in her hand a sarbacane,—seemingly of brass, long and narrow like a wand, and crowned, at the extremity, by a small globe or bulb of the same material. The length of this instrument was fully six feet or more. The old man took it into his hands, and having unscrewed a part of the bulb—which seemed a mere sheathing of brass, he discovered beneath it another globe, similar, in shape and size, to that which had been removed; but the inner bulb was manufactured of glass, of a whiteness equally chrystallic and beautiful. He then took from beneath his robes a little box of ebony, which he unlocked, and from which he produced a head-piece, the face of which, instead of being hard steel or iron, was of glass also, very thin, and quite transparent, through which every muscle and motion of the features might be seen with the greatest distinctness. To the thoughtless vulgar, such a shield seemed only a mockery of that more solid furniture of metal, which, in those days, thoroughly encased the warrior for battle. The inference, accordingly, was very general, that if by any possibility, the accuser succeeded in the combat, he would be indebted solely to supernatural agency for his good fortune. His wand of brass, with its chrystal bulb—his glassy vizor and helmet,—were only regarded as designed to divert the scrutiny from the more secret agency which he employed.

“I am ready,” said the accuser.

“Hast thou prayed?” demanded his enemy in a mocking fashion. “If thou hast not, get thee to thy knees quickly, and renounce the devil whom thou servest. Verily, but little time is left thee.”

“I have prayed and confessed to the Holy Father. Do thou likewise, and make thyself humble and contrite. Repent thee,—for, of a truth, my lord, if the King forbid not this combat, thou art doomed this day, to go to judgment.”

The heart of the accused was hardened within him. He replied with a hiss of defiance and contempt to this last appeal; at the same moment he declared himself in readiness also. They were then withdrawn from the presence for a brief space, and were severally approached by their friends and attendants. The Archbishop, and the King’s favorite went aside with the accuser, and when the latter returned to the arena, in order to the combat, the Archbishop led away with him the little girl, upon whom, at parting, the old man bestowed many caresses, accompanied by many tears. The spectators were all very much moved by this tenderness, and now began to regard him as one set apart for sacrifice—doomed to be separated forever, and by a violent death, from the object of his affections. And when the opponents stood, at length, confronting each other—with none to go between—awaiting only the word for the combat à l’outrance;—when they regarded the strong soldier-like frame, and the warlike bearing of the accused—beheld the ease with which he strode the lists, and displayed his weapon;—and contrasted this image of dire necessity and war, with the feeble, though erect form of his venerable accuser,—habited in vestments like a priest or woman—with the simple unmeaning wand within his grasp, and the frail mask of brittle chrystal upon his face—a loud murmur of regret and commisseration prevailed among the multitude. But this murmur was soon quieted by the cry of the master of the tourney—

“Laissez aller!”

Then followed a painful silence.

“Now, sorcerer,” cried the knight, raising his glittering sword, and advancing as deliberately and with the confident manner of the executioner. The aged accuser simply presented the bulbous extremity of his wand, and before the accused could smite, the frail glass was shivered against the bars of his enemy’s mouth-piece. At this moment the knight was seen slightly to recoil; but it was for a moment only; in the next instant he darted forward, and with a fierce cry, seemed about to strike. The old man, in the meantime, had suffered his wand to fall upon the ground. He made no further effort—offered no show of fear or fly, but with arms folded, seemed in resignation to await the death-stroke of his enemy. But while the weapon of the man of war was in air, and seemingly about to descend, he was seen to pause, while his form suddenly became rigid. A quick and awful shudder seemed to pass through his whole frame. Thus, for a second, he stood paralyzed, and then a thin, mistlike vapor, which might be called smoke, was seen to creep out from various parts of his frame, followed by a thin but oily liquor, that now appeared oozing through all the crevices of his armor. His arm dropped nervelessly by his side; the sword fell from the incapable grasp of his gauntleted hands, and in an inconceivable fraction of time, he himself with all his bulk, sunk down upon the earth—falling, not at length, prostrate, either backward or forward, but in a heap, even upon the spot which he had occupied when standing; and as if every bone had suddenly been withdrawn which had sustained them, the several parts of his armor became detached, and rolled away—his helmet, his gorget, his cuirass, his greaves, his gloves—disclosing beneath a dark, discolored mass—a mere jellied substance, in which bones and muscles were already decomposed and resolved into something less than flesh. Above this heap might be seen a 109 still bright and shining eye, which, for a single second, seemed to retain consciousness and life, as if the soul of the immortal being had lingered in this beautiful and perfect orb, reluctant to the last. But in a moment it, too, had disappeared—all the brightness swallowed up and stifled in the little cloud of vapor which now trembled, heaving up from the mass which but a moment before had been a breathing, a burning, an exulting spirit. A cold horror overspread the field, followed by a husky and convulsive cry, as from a drowning multitude. The people gazed upon each other and upon the awful heap in unspeakable terror. It was annihilation which had taken place before them. Awful was the silence that prevailed for several minutes; a vacant consternation freezing up the very souls of the spectators. But the reaction was tremendous.

“Seize upon the sorcerer! Tear him in pieces!” was the cry from a thousand voices. This was followed by a wild rush, like that of an incoming sea struggling to overwhelm the headlands. The barriers were broken down, the cries swelled into a very tempest, and the mammoth multitude rolled onward, with souls on fire, eyes glaring with tiger fury, and hands outstretched, clutching spasmodically at their victim. Their course had but one centre, where the old man calmly stood. There he kept his immovable station, calm, firm, subdued, but stately. How will he avert his fate—how stay this ocean of souls, resolute to overwhelm him. I trembled—I gasped with doubt and apprehension. But I was spared the further contemplation of horrors which I could no longer bear to witness, by the very intensity of the interest which my imagination had conceived in the subject. There is a point beyond which the mortal nature cannot endure. I had reached that point, and was relieved. I awakened, and started into living consciousness, my face covered with clammy dews, my hair upright and wet, my whole frame agitated with the terrors which were due wholly to the imagination.

It would be easy, perhaps, to account for such a dream, assuming, as we did at the outset, that the mental faculties never know abeyance—that the thought never sleeps. Any speculation in regard to the transition periods in English history, would give the requisite material. From a survey of the powers of physical manhood to those rival and superior powers which follow from the birth of art and science, the step is natural enough, and the imagination might well delight itself by putting them in contrast and opposition. But we have no space left for further discussion.





Forget the dead, the past? O yet

There are ghosts who may take revenge for it;

Memories that make the heart a tomb,

Regrets which glide through the spirit’s gloom

And with ghostly whisper tell

That joy, once lost, is pain.



When the warring voice of storm is heard

Across the sea goes the summer bird,

But back again the wanderer flies

When April’s azure drapes the skies,

    With carol sweet

    The morn to greet,

But the radiant girl whom we deplore

To the bower of Home will return no more.


Decay, a loathsome bridegroom, now

Kisses with mildewed lip her brow;

Her heart is colder than the rill

When winter bids its tongue be still;

    Yet Spring will come,

    With song and bloom,

And unchain the silvery feet of waves,

But break no bonds in voiceless graves.


Wasting away with a sad decline,

Far from these northern hills of pine,

She would wander back to them in dreams,

To hear the roar of their rushing streams;

    And often spoke

    Of a favorite oak

On the door-sill flinging pleasant shade,

And under which, a child, she played.


When beat no more her snow-white breast,

Strange hands the lovely ruin-drest,

Smoothing, upon the forehead fair,

Loose, glittering flakes of golden hair;

    And strangers gave

    To our dead a grave,

Sprinkling above the frail remains

Mould, moistened by autumnal rains.


Ah! since she died a wilder wail

Is uttered by the midnight gale,

And voices, mourning something gone,

Rise from the dead leaves on the lawn;

    And sadness broods

    Above the woods

Moaning as if endowed with soul,

For through their depths she loved to stroll.


The lute that answered when she sung

Old airs, at twilight, is unstrung—

She wakes where the sainted dwell alone

An instrument of richer tone;

    And angel’s smile

    On her the while,

And to garland her sinless brow of snow

The rarest blossoms of Heaven bestow.







Happiness, it appears to us, is a cause, as well as the effect of virtue. When the heart is warmed with rational enjoyment, it is naturally grateful to those that promote the pleasure. When it is excited to the indulgence of generous feelings by the operation of kindness in others, it pours out those feelings upon all within its influence. It does not confine the reflection of pleasure to those from whom the pleasure springs; but seeks to dispense it upon all within its influence, as the planets, receiving their light from the sun, dispense that light to all the stars in the system. And the effort to promote the enjoyment of others—the true rational enjoyment of others—is a virtue. Those, therefore, who create an occasion for such social intercourse as produces rational pleasure, are promoting, in some degree, the cause of virtue.

It has been a common remark that there were not enough holydays in this country—general holydays—those that are holy or sacred to all. We have indeed the Christmas, but that day, though it would seem to be commended to the observance of all Christians, yet is not, for reasons well understood by most of our readers, a general observance; not from any want of respect to the event which the day is intended to celebrate, but partly for a disagreement as to the mode or the time of the celebration—and what is worse, perhaps, while one part of our countrymen have grown up in a sort of doctrinal disrelish of any celebration of the day, another part has extended its celebration through many days, in a way which deprived the whole of all ideas of sanctity, and gave to the rejoicings an appearance of those orgies which paganism devoted to the honor of some impure divinity and the gratification of some unclean appetite.

Christmas, it may be remarked, however, is gradually coming into a more appropriate appreciation; and, throughout the length and breadth of the land there is a growing disposition to honor to the day, and to make it a season of renewed thankfulness to God, and of the exercise of good-will to, and among, men. So much the better, it is one day redeemed and set apart for the exercise of high and holy feelings, and the indulgence of domestic intercourse, enlarged by the temporary union of various branches of the family-tree with the fruits thereof.

Washington’s Birth-day was once more generally celebrated than it is now; and even now when a celebration is had on that day, so sacred to the dearest recollections of patriotism, and the sons of freedom assemble together, Satan comes also among them to embitter the occasion with the gall of party feeling, infused into every toast which is offered, and squeezed into every glass that is emptied. So that Washington’s birth-day has ceased to be a general holyday, or rather to be celebrated with that community of feeling which makes a true holyday.

The Fourth of July, one would suppose, should be set apart for universal celebration wherever an American can be found, or wherever national freedom can be appreciated. But the day, even when celebrated without reference to party politics is not inclusive. Patriotism has in it a dignified reserve which asks for a solemnity on the national birth-day; and so instead of a general rejoicing, there is a special and limited celebration—and when the celebration falls into party hands, then the day is neither holy nor sanctified. At best the Fourth of July must be celebrated with pomp, show, military display, bonfires, and eating and drinking. Appropriate as all these may be, they are not the ingredients for a real general holyday in which the fancy, the feelings, and the affections find play, and gravity is dismissed to the next sun rise.

We are not referring of course to Sunday, and other days set apart for religious services; they are, as they should be, made specially referable to our connection with, our dependence upon, and our duty and obligations to, our God. May they be kept sacred from all worldly intrusion, and by their holy character lend a sanctifying influence unto all the other days of the week, so that whether we eat or drink, whether we laugh or cry, whether mourn or rejoice, (for there is a time for each of these,) we shall do all with a solemn deference to the duties which we owe our Maker.

There is a movement, or rather there has been a movement toward the restoration of a holyday, in which childhood and youth have a direct interest, and manhood and age may find, if not a direct, at least, a reflected pleasure; and we shall think better of the age in which we live for the restoration to homage and joyful devotion of good old St. Valentine of blessed memory. Who, whether he was a bachelor or a widower, gave encouragement to the good work of courtship, and became canonized, if not for the miracles he wrought upon the bodies of his devotees, at least for his wonderful work upon the hearts of those who knelt at his shrine. It has always been a matter of regret that the proceedings of the sacred conclave in which Valentine obtained canonization were not made public. We are sure that the cardinal who took the part of Devil’s advocate in the trial of the saint’s claim to the honors, must have labored hard if he meant to obtain future fees; for, of all the antagonism to real sanctity nothing is equal to hatred, and of all the principles which the Evil Spirit would oppose nothing can equal affection. 111 No one could get Satan’s permission to promote loving feelings.

We are glad, on more accounts than one, that St. Dominic was not selected, and even St. Augustine. They had their respective merits and deserve special consideration, but dear old St. Valentine is commended to the gentler affections of all, by the loveliness and beauty which his own purity and grace threw around the affections of the human heart, and the loftiness which his own goodness gave to the character of earthly love, assimilating that passion with our affections for things divine, and showing the intimate connection between the two—the difference being only in degree consequent upon the objects.

Valentine was one of the early Christians; whether he was a bishop or only a presbyter, it is now difficult to ascertain; and, truth to say, it does not make a button’s difference, for he would not be the better for his mitre nor the worse for his stole in the good work of love to which he devoted himself, and for which he is now distinguished and remembered. He was a good man and full of affection, and so Claudius caused him to be put to death, and for good reason too, we think, at least on principles of consistency—what could the murderer find to admire in the mild and lovely character of Valentine, and what but exposure to the husband of Messalina must be the chaste and affectionate teaching of the apostle of pure affection.

We shall be told, we suppose, one day in February was set apart by the pagan Romans for the celebration of their Lupercalia, when young men drew from a box the name of some female favorite for the year. Well, what then? Shall we not thank the returning sense of the people that installs a Christian saint in the niche into which the pagans had thrust their god Pan, who, by his ugly face and hideous howls, could drive away wolves? Do we not all owe a tribute of thanks to those who instituted the delightful festival of St. Valentine to supply the beastly orgies of the Luperci? There is indeed some similarity in the merriment. The Roman youth ran through the street with thongs, and the Christian youth hasten with more agreeable presents; but in both ancient and modern times it seems that the females were anxious, for various reasons, to be the objects of the merriment.

Before we issue another number of Graham, the high and the augmenting festival of St. Valentine will be celebrated. Celebrated this year, we venture to assert, with a pomp and circumstance very far beyond that of any other February since the office of Juno gave a name to the month. Celebrated in a way to demonstrate the growing estimation in which the kindly feelings are held.

This will be as it should be. A day has been found in which all may have an occasion for present pleasure; some (and most) to be active in the circulation of those delicate compositions or handy-works which express regard and sometimes promote affection; others will look back upon the years past, and remember with a silent tear how the beautiful and beloved ones, that made them happy by the transmission or the acceptance of the token, are now mouldering in the earth, insensible to all those affections which once made them happy, unconscious even of the regret which their departure created and their absence keeps alive. Mournful indeed is it to take from the secret ark, where affection has enshrined it, the emblem of a love that death has severed; and still more painful is it to gaze on the return of the anniversary of proffered vows, upon that pledge which time never redeemed, and to feel that she who might have been happy in ministering to your happiness, is miserable in a union (the only point of union) with another.

We saw a lad conveying to the residence of the loved one the Valentine, whose form and decoration told of its donor—no record of name was made, nor was it necessary to the receiver—none was politic for the witnesses. There was a secret love—a love unannounced to the world, yet not unknown. The giver and the receiver of the Valentine were married before July—yet not to each other. That Valentine was the cause of misery. The new husband knew that she loved another, yet persisted in his courtship, and with the influence of his wealth over the mother, procured marriage. He knew during the honeymoon all that had ever occurred, and yet was content with his winnings—the accidental discovery of the Valentine, though not where it could have been hoarded away, as if of value, not placed as a memento of affection, but as if thrown aside, because useless, and left as forgotten—the accidental discovery of that Valentine awakened the bitterness of jealousy—not jealousy of honor, but that contemptible narrowness of selfish esteem, which demands that the eyes of a wife should always have been closed—while the eyes and appetites of the husband are always roving. Was the Valentine then an evil? Nay—rather would not any object, or rather no object, in two months have roused the unreasonableness of the discoverer? Where there is much filth, spontaneous combustion will save the application of the lighted match.

One who is reading the preceding paragraph while we are preparing for this, tells us she obtained the best husband in the world by means of a Valentine, and she has never forgotten the saint’s day since. It would, probably, be more germain to the matter to say, that her husband got the best wife in the country by a Valentine—though on second thought, she may be right—women generally know best, and remember most.

We repeat our expression of pleasure, that there has arisen such a general devotion to good St. Valentine, and we are sure that regard to that canonized Christian’s memory will enlarge the spirit of true devotion, so that if we had another saint in the calendar who stood in the same relation to the pagan Cupid which Valentine does to the Luperci, that saint would find his shrine greatly enriched by those who commenced their devotion on the 14th of February.

We are glad to see that the regard to good St. Valentine is presenting of works, and that the devotion does not pass away in the breath that utters vows; but, beside the incense that springs from the 112 burning thurible, there are offerings laid upon the altar—rich, tasteful, elaborate, simple, magnificent or humble. Every kind may be had, and will be had from those who minister to the wants of the Valentinans, as of old did the sellers of doves in the temple provide the means of sacrifice to the unprepared devotee.

St. Valentine’s day then is becoming, nay, it has become, a national holyday—one that brings smiles of pleasure to the young of both sexes, and the joy of recollected pleasure to the old. It is a festival in which the feelings need no stimulant, and in which it asks no boisterous expression. Beautiful is the anticipation of such a season. Some hearts beat quickly in the thought of what may be sent, and who will send it. Some hopes will be excited by the manner of reception—all will be joyful in preparing to give; all will be gratified in examining the gift. Not all—one at least will go to the shrine where affection has deposited the gift—and as she drops a tear upon the cherished memorial, will send her thoughts far, far upward to the home of the giver—or backward to the hour in which it was given. Yet this is joy—this sanctified Sabbath of the young heart seems doubly hallowed when its light is reflected from the memorial of affection, an affection made sure in one by the icy hand of death; fixed undyingly in the other, by a consecration which no change can divert from its hallowing purpose.





When the young bird goes from her early home,

  Though the swift-winged moments in happiness fly,

Though the bridegroom is near with a gentle tone

  And a truthful love in his deep dark eye—

Though the future is strewn with the roses of hope,

 And peopled with phantoms too brilliant to last—

She turns with a tear to the friends of her youth,

  To those who were dear in the past.


The wanderer far, far from kindred and friends,

  In fancy revisits his dear native cot;

He views the clear stream where the willow tree bends,

  And the cowslips that brighten the spot.

He views the dark wood and the green sloping hill,

  The porch, with its graceful white jessamine hung,

The half-open window that looks on the mill,

  And the garden where honey-bees hum.


And before him appear, as distinct as of yore,

  His mother’s soft eye, and his sire’s furrowed brow;

His Mary’s light form, as when last on the shore

  He bade her remember her vow;

His sister’s long hair, with its sunshiny gleam,

  Like a banner of gold to the summer wind cast—

But one touch of the present dissolves the light dream,

  And he sighs for the joys of the past.


Though surrounded with blessings, and favored with all

  That God in his bounty bestows,

We revert to the pleasures we ne’er can recall,

  And the tear-drop unconsciously flows.

While roving, entranced, ’mid the fairest of scenes.

  A cloud o’er our warm glowing hearts will be cast,

If we think of the blossoms, the birds and the streams

  That were lovely and loved in the past.


Creator and Father! Oh! teach me to live

  With thy precepts divine for my guide,

Oh! let my young bosom thy lessons receive,

  And divest it of folly and pride,

That, when this lithe form is decrepit and bent,

  When my color is fading, my pulse waning fast—

I can look back with joy to the moments well spent,

  And muse with delight on the past.





Dark clouds are hovering round me

  With all their train of care:

A thousand woes surround me,

  Drear shadows of despair!

But what are they?—a richer gem

  Shines radiant from above:

It throws its sunshine over them,

  And oh!—that light is Love!


Then why should cares alarm me,

  Though adverse fortune reign?

Why frowns of wo disarm me?

  Why sorrow give me pain?

For what are all!—a richer gem

  Shines radiant from above:

It throws its sunshine over them,

  And oh!—that light is Love!






Scarcely a year has elapsed since the musical world has been painfully moved by the death of Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy. No loss, which the divine art has sustained since that of Von Weber, will be so difficult to replace, and probably no man of genius was ever more sincerely mourned, as a man. He not only possessed that universal sympathy with humanity, which is so noble a characteristic of the highest genius, but, unlike many great men, whose very isolation of intellect creates an atmosphere about them which the world is awed from seeking to penetrate, the familiar scope of his warm nature descended to an equality with all he met, and though all who named him as a composer, may not have understood or appreciated him, all who knew him as a man, could not choose but love him. The career of genius, unhappily, is not often surrounded at the onset with the worldly advantages, nor watched and cherished with the fostering care, which fell to his lot. His nature was never embittered by early struggles with an unrecognizing world, nor was his natural faith in man shaken by a keen encounter with selfishness and persecution. The development of his moral nature thus calmly ripened in harmony with his mind, each sustaining and ennobling the other. The contemplation of such a character is in itself exalting, and seems to give his memory a more than ordinary consecration.

At this time, when we are still constantly reminded of his loss—when those to whom his works have a voice and a power never mention his name but with the unconscious sadness of a reverent heart, all which may help to recall his living image possesses a universal interest. I trust, therefore, that the relation of an interview, the recollection of which is among those hours, for whose bestowal I am most grateful to the past, will need no apology. On the contrary, it is rather the discharge of that duty which we owe to art, as all her worshipers will acknowledge.

A winter’s residence in Frankfort, which of late years is somewhat distinguished for the excellence of its opera, and the high degree of culture attained by its various musical unions, sufficed to make me familiar with many of the great works of the German composers. Fortunately, it was not until after I had learned to feel the all-pervading soul of beauty which inspired Mozart, and paused in awe on the borders of Beethoven’s vast and solemn realm, that I heard the music of Mendelssohn. Thus prepared, in part, the simple and severe grandeur of his style impressed me with a consciousness of its power, though I could not always grasp the spirit of the sound, and follow it back to the sublime conception—as, when a schoolboy, I first opened the pages of Milton, and read with wonder and delight what it would have puzzled me exceedingly to explain. Mendelssohn’s music is of a more purely intellectual character than that of any modern composer, and his greatest works are those which but few thoroughly appreciate. While, in his “Songs without Words,” and the simple grandeur of his sacred melodies, he comes nearer to the general sympathy, his “Walpurgisnacht,” and “Fingal’s Cave,” creations of startling power and sublimity, which stand alone in the character of their expression, are rarely produced, except in those German cities where the taste for music has not been led away from the standard set up by the schools of Bach and Hayden, by the voluptuous melodies of the modern Italian opera. Frankfort is one of these cities, and I was fortunate enough to hear the Walpurgisnacht performed by the Cæcilien-Verein, or Society of St. Cecilia. The poetry of Goethe and the music of Mendelssohn!—it was a sublime marriage of genius. The works of the latter are as full of wild and stormy pictures as those of the former, and he has described in music the crags and breakers of the bleak Hebrides, with as much power as Goethe exhibits, in painting the savage scenery of the Brocken.

Mendelssohn was living in Frankfort during the winter I spent there, and I was naturally anxious to see the face of a great man, whom there was no probability of my ever being near again, in the course of my wanderings. One sunny day in March, when all the population of Frankfort seemed to have turned out upon the budding promenades which belt the city, and the broad quays along the Main, to enjoy the first premonition of spring, I went on my usual afternoon stroll with my friend and countryman, W——, whose glowing talk upon the musical art was quite as refreshing to me after the day’s study in the gloomy Marktplotz, as were the blue mountains of Epessart, which are visible from the bridge over the Main.

There had been a great inundation the week previous, and the cold, wintry storms which accompanied it, had just given place to sunshine and milder air. The boatmen upon the flat, clumsy barges which come down from Würzburg and the upper Main, were loosening their lashings and preparing to trust themselves upon the swollen waters. The music of Savoyards and bands of mountain singers was heard in every open space, and brave, ruddy-looking Tyrolese, wild-eyed Bohemians in their quaint, national costume, and the men of Suabia and the Black Forest, mingled with the crowd, till it seemed like a holyday assemblage made up from all the German provinces. We threaded the motley multitude, finding a pleasant pastime in reading their faces and costumes, turning rapidly, as it were, the leaves of a historical picture book.

114 My eye was finally caught by a man who came toward us on the quay, and whose face and air were in such striking contrast to those about him, that my whole attention was at once fixed upon him. He was simply and rather negligently dressed in dark cloth, with a cravat tied loosely about his neck. His beard had evidently not been touched for two or three days, and his black hair was long and frowzed by the wind. His eyes, which were large, dark and kindling, were directed forward and slightly lifted, in the abstraction of some absorbing thought, and as he passed, I heard him singing to himself in a voice deep but not loud, and yet with a far different tone from that of one who hums a careless air as he walks. But a few notes caught my ear, yet I remember their sound, elevated and with that scarcely perceptible vibration which betrays a feeling below the soul’s surface, as distinctly now as at the time. W—— grasped my arm quickly and said in a low voice, “Mendelssohn!” I turned hastily, and looked after him, as he went down the quay, apparently but half conscious of the stirring scenes around him. I could easily imagine how the balmy, indolent sensation in the air, so like a soothing and tranquilizing strain of music, should have led him into the serene and majestic realm of his own creations.

It was something to have seen a man of genius thus alone, and in communion with his inspired thoughts, and I could not repress a feeling of pleasure at the idea of having unconsciously acknowledged the influences around him, before I knew his name. After this passing glimpse, this flash of him, however, came the natural desire to see his features in repose, and obtain some impression of his personal character. An opportunity soon occurred. The performance of his “Walpurgisnacht,” by the Cæcilien-Verein, a day or two thereafter, increased the enthusiasm I had before felt for his works, and full of the recollection of its sublime Druid choruses, I wrote a few lines to him, expressive of the delight they had given me, and of my wish to possess his name in autograph, that I might take to America some token connected with their remembrance. The next day I received a very kind note in reply, enclosing a manuscript score of a chorus from the “Walpurgisnacht.”

Summoning up my courage the next morning, I decided on calling upon him in person, feeling certain, from the character of his note, that he would understand the motive which prompted me to take such a liberty. I had no difficulty in finding his residence in the Bockenheimer Gasse, in the western part of the city. The servant ushered me into a handsomely furnished room, with a carpet, an unusual thing in German houses; a grand piano occupied one side of the apartment. These struck my eye on entering, but my observation was cut short by the appearance of Mendelssohn. A few words of introduction served to remove any embarrassment I might have felt on account of my unceremonious call, and I was soon set entirely at ease by his frank and friendly manner. As he sat opposite to me, beside a small table, covered with articles of vertù, I was much struck with the high intellectual beauty of his countenance. His forehead was white, unwrinkled, and expanding above, in the region of the ideal faculties. His eyes were large, very dark and lambent with a light that seemed to come through them—like the phosphorescent gleam on the ocean at midnight. I have observed this peculiar character of the eye only in men of the highest genius—the sculptor Powers is another instance in which it has been frequently remarked. None of the engravings of Mendelssohn which have yet been made give any idea of the kindling effect which is thus given to his face. His nose was slightly prominent, and the traces of his Jewish blood were seen in this, as well as the thin but delicate curve of the upper lip, and the high cheek-bones. Yet it was the Jewish face softened and spiritualized, retaining none of its coarser characteristics. The faces of Jewish youth are of a rare and remarkable beauty, but this is scarcely ever retained beyond the first period of manhood. In Mendelssohn, the perpetual youth of spirit, which is the gift of genius alone, seemed to have kept his features moulded to its expression, while the approach of maturer years but heightened and strengthened its character.

He spoke of German music, and told me I should hear it best performed in Vienna and Berlin. Some remarks on America led him to speak of a grand Musical Festival, which was then in the course of preparation in New York. He had received a letter inviting him to assist in it, and said he would have gladly attended it, but his duty to his family would not permit of his leaving. He appeared to be much gratified by the invitation, not only for the personal appreciation which it implied, but as a cheering sign of progress in the musical art. My friend W——, who had met with Mendelssohn the summer previous, at the baths of Kronthal, said that he had expressed much curiosity respecting the native negro melodies—which, after all, form the only peculiarly national music we possess—and that he considered some of them exceedingly beautiful and original.

I did not feel at liberty to intrude long upon the morning hours of a composer, and took my leave after a short interview. Mendelssohn, at parting, expressed his warm interest in our country’s progress, especially in the refined arts, and gave me a kind invitation to call upon him in whatever German city I should find him. I left Frankfort in two or three weeks after this, and although I was never afterward enabled to fulfill my promise and desire, I was often forcibly reminded of his person and his genius—and never more gratefully than when I stood beside the marble monument to Sebastian Bach, in the promenades of Leipzic—raised to the memory of that patriarch of harmony, by the generosity of Mendelssohn.




The hero of my sketch, Jasper Leech, was, to use the stereotyped expression, born of poor but honest parents; his infancy exhibited no remarkable diagnostics, by which to illustrate or establish any peculiarity of character, saving, perhaps, the simple fact, that with him the process of weaning was protracted to a curious extent, any attempt to cut off or diminish the maternal supply being met with obstinate resistance, in spite of all the ingenious artifices usually resorted to on such occasions to induce a distaste, still he sucked and sucked, until the female visiters, one and all, noted it; shameful in a great fellow like that.

At school, young Jasper was famous for the steady snail-pace at which he crawled through the rudiments, and also for the extraordinary penchant he evinced for any thing in his proximity which was, or appeared to be, unattainable at the moment; say that one of his school-mates was in possession of a new toy, Jasper would first envy him, then covet it, cunningly waiting the moment when, the novelty being past, the boy was open to negotiation, then would he chaffer and diplomatize, almost invariably gaining his desired end. Thus he went on steadily accumulating, until what with a natural appetite for trading, and a calculating eye to the profitable side of a bargain, he managed to shut up the market altogether by exhaustion. The very springtime of life, which generally passes by in gleesome sport, was to him a period of anxiety and care; for while his mates were rioting in boisterous play, he would sit apart, his whole brain wrapped in the maze of speculation—a swop is in progression, and he must have the advantage.

Thus passed his boyhood; his schooling over, with his strong common sense undulled by too much book-lore, he was duly inducted into the mystery of shoe-craft. He served out his time with exemplary diligence, working leisurely of days that he might keep reserve of strength to spend the nights for his own profit, thereby saving a considerable sum from the employment of his over-hours.

Once his own master, he deliberated long what road he should travel in the pursuit of the blind goddess, invisible as well as blind—that intangible phantasma which men wear out life and energy in the seeking, only when found to confess with tears of bitterness how misspent was time in the attainment.

At last our ambitious friend ventured humbly into trade on his own account, declaring that should any thing approaching to success crown his efforts, and that at the end of five or six years he could command a thousand dollars, he would be the most contented, the happiest fellow on earth.

He was lucky, curiously lucky; it seemed as though, Midas-like, all he touched turned to gold; money swept in, so that before he had been three years in business, instead of the limited one thousand, he was master of five. “Now,” said he to himself, “if I could but make that five ten, I might not only be enabled to enlarge my stock, and thereby increase my returns, but I think I might even venture to look about for a helpmate with an equal sum;” for Jasper would just as soon have thought of investing the best part of his capital in the establishment of a lunatic asylum, as of marrying a portionless woman.

The sun shone on—in less time than he could possibly have anticipated—ten thousand was at his command. Very good, thought he; this, with ten or fifteen thousand more, as a premium for encumbering myself with a comforter of the snarling sex—for the ungallant Jasper had a thoroughly mercantile business man’s opinion of the angelic species—will be sufficient. I must investigate.

So he set out on a tour of the watering-places, and such like wife-markets, where Cupid, the most wide-awake of auctioneers—it’s a libel to say he’s blind—knocks the little darlings down to the highest bidder. Of course, Jasper stopped at the first-class hotels, where he scrutinized the habitués of the ladies ordinary with uncommon interest. There’s no use in disguising the fact, he sought not a wife, but a fortune; in extenuation, allow me to say, he was not at all singular, there are plenty of those individuals extant, young, tolerably good-looking fellows, bien gante, and redolent of whisker, who linger about the ladies’ drawing-room, in the faint hope of fascinating something available, (prudent maternity avoids this class with pious horror,) middle aged beaux, who dress sedulously, and toady chaperons, carry fans, are always so attentive and so obliging, dine regularly, and affect a Burgundy decanter, which looks easy circumstanced, but which the poor waiter is tired of carrying backward and forward, ticketed some hundred and something.

These animals are generally great scandal-mongers, and always dangerous, sweet-voiced but adder-tongued, their modus operandi is to poison the ear of the person addressed, against any other individual, hoping thereby to elevate their own characters upon the slaughtered heap. Let no woman suffer such pestilent breath to be a second time breathed within her hearing.

Jasper, though indefatigable as you may well suppose, met with strange adventure during his wife-hunt. Pretty women, after short experience, he avoided utterly, for he found that they were usually too extravagant in their expectations with regard to personnel, and as Jasper could not, by any stretch of his imagination, fancy that he ranked in the category of Fredericks and Augustuses, he endeavored to make up the deficiency by a liberal display of wealth-prefiguring ornament, a kind of strong-box index, 116 which he shrewdly suspected might tempt some ambitious innocent to investigate the contents thereof.

Perhaps it would be as well, at this period, as our hero is gotten up at no small expense, to give a rough pen-and-ink outline of his appearance. In the first place, he was twenty-eight years old, by his own account; as he could scarcely be expected to know exactly himself, it’s not to be wondered at that he and the parish register differed a few years; but that was of little consequence, for he had an accommodating peasant-colored complexion, which, as it made him look at least forty, will no doubt return the compliment by making him look no more at sixty; his hair was about as indefinite, being a factitious auburn, a dry, wiry red, something like the end of a fox’s brush in hot weather, crisp and tangible, like fine copper-shavings; one could not help fancying that if he shook his head, each individual hair would jar audibly against the other. The whole arrangement gave one an idea of intense heat, and an involuntary hope that the poor fellow had but a sprinkle of hydrocephalus, he was of undecided height also, varying from five feet four-and-a-half to five feet four-and-three-quarters, at the option of his boot-maker; but the most remarkable features, if we may use the expression, in his conformation, were his hands, which were gaunt and bony, of a tanned-leathery consistence, and of a streaky, mottled, castile-soap color, covered with a straggling crop of light, sandy hair, and ornamented with several wedding-rings—evidences of broken-hearts, which some men are fond of displaying as certificates of gallantry. Dressed in irreproachable black, and capped and jeweled in the most orthodox style, it may be imagined that Jasper was an object of no small solicitude to the “anxious mothers of slenderly-portioned daughters;” he certainly had an air bien riche, if not distingué—and that’s the marketable materiel after all.

Months were unprofitably spent, and Jasper was beginning to think the time irretrievably lost, when an occurrence of some little interest varied the cateraceous-drinkability of hotel monotony. The Blodgerses arrived, en route to the fashionable ruralities.

Now the Blodgerses were extensive people in their way. They were originated somewhere in Pennsylvania, and affected the tone of the far south; traveled with huge trunks, two lap-dogs, a parrot, and a liveried African. The head of the family was a pursy, important, chairman-of-an-election-committee-looking man, with a superabundance of excessively white shirt-frill, and a great deal too much watch-chain; the latter appendage he invariably swung round as he conversed, its momentum indicating the state of his temper during an argument; let him speak upon uninteresting topics—literature, for instance, or any of the useless arts—you notice but a gentle apathetic oscillation, but let him get upon the tariff; let him hurl denunciations against his political enemies, or eulogize his particular presidential candidate, and round it goes with astonishing velocity.

Blodgers had been a grocer, or something of the kind, and having, during a life of assiduous saving and scraping, accumulated a very large sum, now flung himself with extraordinary abandon upon the full stream of gentility—and, to say the truth, most uncomfortable he found it; for many a time would he acknowledge to his wife that “This flying about from steam-car to steamboat, was far more fatiguing, and not quite so profitable as quietly serving out lump sugar.” Then would Mrs. B. indignantly check such compromising thoughts, for she was a person of great pretension, had had a slight acquaintance with Mrs. Judge Pinning, and once visited by accident Mrs. General Jollikins, so felt herself bound to talk of “society.” “They don’t do this in our set;” or, “it’s not the etiquette in society;” and such like sidewinded hints of her position, formed the staple of her conversations. As for the heiress to the wealthy grocer’s store, there was an indescribable something in her air and manner which plainly indicated, “I am worth looking after!” She talked loudly, stared mutely through a magnificent Parisian double-glass, and in fact broke through all the recognized rules of good breeding with that insolent familiarity which but poorly imitates the nonchalant ease of the really distingué.

No description of deportment could have made so great an impression on Jasper. She looked ingots, she spoke specie, and her prestige was altogether redolent of roleaux. He was struck, but the stricken deer took the precaution to investigate realities before he advanced a step toward acquaintanceship. Now, thought he, if she but happen to have some ten or fifteen thousand, she’d be just the wife for me. The result was satisfactory. He discovered that a larger sum was settled to be her marriage-portion—and so laid vigorous siege instanter.

Now Araminta Blodgers, although decidedly unqualified to grace the pages of the book of beauty, had a strange predilection for “nice young men;” so that at first Jasper met with decided, and not over-delicately expressed, opposition. But he was not a man to retire from the first repulse; he persevered, and finally so deceived the sympathetic Araminta into the belief of his ardent affection, that, one fine summer evening, she sighed forth an avowal that she and her expectations were at his disposal.

Fresh from this successful attack upon the heiress’ susceptibilities, with a feathery heart, Jasper snapped his fingers at love, and danced down the corridor of the hotel, to the infinite wonderment of the waiters. Either from force of habit, or as a means of tempering the exuberance of his spirits, he plunged into the mysteries of the guest-book, where, alas! for Araminta Blodgers, and for true love! the first name he saw was that of Mrs. Skinnington, the rich widow from his own immediate neighborhood; she whom he had sedulously church-ogled from the opposite pew every Sunday, astonished at the vastness of his presumption; she, the bona fide and sole possessor of nearly half his native town. Here was the shadow of a shade of opportunity. She was alone. Jasper hesitated. Araminta’s fortune was ample, but when there was a chance of more, it wasn’t 117 enough! Finally, he determined to wait the first interview with the widow, and be regulated by her manner.

They met at dinner, and she was singularly gracious. The fact is, those eye-assaults had told a little; and I’m sorry to say, for the character of the sex, that the widow, in case the siege should be renewed, had predetermined on capitulation.

The result may be anticipated. The endurable Araminta was thrown over for the intolerable widow and her superior wealth. They were married in a curiously short space of time; and when Jasper found himself master of the widow’s hoards, “Now,” thought he, with a glowing heart, “a few thousand dollars more, and I shall be content. One hundred thousand is the acme of my desire; let me but achieve that, and I shall then retire and spend the remainder of my days in quiet comfort.”

In process of time he did realize the coveted amount; but did he keep his word and retire. No! he had enough of that. Home was to him the worst of all miseries, a sort of domestic Tartarus; the presiding fury, his elderly wife, who, incapable of inspiring a sentiment of affection herself, yet assumed all the caprice of a girl. Jealous to very lunacy, she gave vent to the agonizing sensations of her soul by scribbling heart-rending sonnets for the Fiddle-Faddle Magazine. Thin, withered, romantic and exacting, you may suppose that to the unfortunately lucky Jasper, home was no dulce domum.

The consequence was, that he, dreading the tête-à-tête domestic, confined his attention to his monetary affairs. Retirement with an unlovable and moreover intolerably suspicious companion as Mrs. L., or, as she signed herself, Sappho, was out of the question; so he determined to stick to the counting-house. And now a great idea filled his brain almost to monomania, which was, to make his one hundred thousand two. Once conceived, every thought and action was merged in that one absorbing idea. Heedless of the domestic tornadoes that ever and anon swept over his devoted head, he slaved, fretted, lied, I think I may venture to say, cheated, but honorably, and in the way of business, until after a few years of health-destroying worry, he beheld himself within sight of the desired haven. But five thousand more, and the sum would be accomplished; one stroke of luck—one piece of indifferent fortune, and he would then be really content.

Worn out by constant exertion, he fell dangerously sick. During his illness, news arrived which brought him within a few hundreds of his desired maximum. Notwithstanding his bad health, and in opposition to all remonstrance, he called for his books, and with weak hand, and weaker brain, attempted to calculate. After many hours labor, altogether unaware that he was thus unprofitably expending his last flickering of life, he gave a long sorrowful sigh, and gasping forth, “Not enough! not enough!” expired.

Not many days after, a few feet of earth were sufficient for THE MAN WHO NEVER HAD ENOUGH.






[Written on reading “My Bird,” by Fanny Forester.]

My bird has flown, my gentle bird!

  Four autumn suns gone by,

She left, to cheer our loneliness,

  Her own dear native sky.


With love, the precious treasure came;

  I drew her to my breast,

Gazed in her heaven-lit eye of blue,

  And felt—how richly blest!


She grew in beauty day by day,

  More dear each passing hour,

Until we came to feel our bird

  Would never leave our bower.


The rich, wild sweetness of her song,

  Rung on the morning air,

And mildly, on the evening breeze,

  It told the hour of prayer.


We thought when darkness frowned above,

  And wint’ry winds went by—

’Twould still be summer in our home,

  And sunshine on our sky.


With our own sweet minstrel ever near

  No sorrow could invade;

Her song of love would cheer us still,

  And bless our woodland shade.


Now, many a weary day hath passed

  Since from my tearful eye

Her untaught pinion cleft the air,

  And vanished in the sky.


Why has she gone? Seeks she afar

  Some green isle’s shadier bowers?

Some happier nest—serener airs—

  And purer love than ours?


Oh not on earth! not here—not here!

  Clouds veil our brightest skies,

And summer’s mildest breezes,

  Chill our bird of Paradise.


The treasure which we deemed our own

  Was briefly lent, not given.

Our Father knew his spotless bird,

  And called her home to Heaven.







“Tut-tut-tut! don’t tell me ‘it means nothing,’ Sara,” said my uncle Waldron, as he assumed quite an air of resentment, and seized in his hand a cluster of cousin Sara’s beautiful ringlets, school-master fashion, as if about to “pull her hair” for some just discovered mischief.

“Why uncle!” expostulated Sara, looking up in his face, with a smile that would have melted an iceberg, so warm and sunny was it—much more did it melt the feigned frown on the brow of my bachelor uncle—“do let me assure you”—

“I don’t want any assurances niece—what need has a man of assurances when he sees with his own eyes, especially if he has as much reason for confidence in his visual organs as I have in mine,” smilingly retorted uncle Theodore. “Don’t I catch him here most provokingly often? and is there not such a commerce in books between you, as would justify the suspicion that I have not a library of five thousand volumes, of all sorts of books, in all sorts of languages, both living and dead, besides shares in I know not how many circulating libraries”—

“But uncle,” I interposed, “you must remember that Mr. Greydon is the minister, and he comes to make cousin Sara pastoral calls, and to impart spiritual counsel—” I left my apology unfinished, for I was obliged to stop and laugh at its mis-placed sanctimony.

“Yes, yes, yes, miss!” replied uncle The., fairly driven into one of his merriest laughs—“and by all means his ‘spiritual’ what-did-you-call-it, must be communicated in German—no medium but German now—a little while ago nothing but French—by and by it will be hocus-pocus, or some other such gibberish!”

“Dear uncle,” interrupted poor blushing Sara, “I’m studying German, and Mr. Greydon is so kind as to give me two lessons a week, out of his very valuable time.”

“Fol-de-rol, every word of it—if you wanted a German teacher, why didn’t I ever hear of it, so I could have procured a genuine imported one. But suppose he does come twice a week to give you a lesson, he comes the other twice to—what, Sara? Help get it?” And Sara, finding herself circumvented on that track, blushed redder, and uncle Waldron laughed merrier than ever.

My other apology for the frequency of Mr. Greydon’s visits, was so nearly a failure, I concluded this time, silence was the “better part of valor,” so I left cousin Sara, to her own extrications from the cross-examinations of a wily old lawyer. As soon as she could make herself heard above uncle’s successive peals of merriment, she said, rather imploringly—

“Why, uncle Waldron, don’t make so much sport of me. You know I am so much alone—I am sure I think Mr. Greydon is very kind.”

“Yes, yes, niece—very kind, indeed—I see. ‘Alone so much,’ did you say? How comes that, pray? Isn’t here Maria, and isn’t she company enough? You pay my guest but a wretched compliment, putting her society down as nothing.”

“O no, no, uncle,” said Sara, “I don’t mean that—indeed you are too wicked to-night. Maria knows how truly I value her society. But she is here only very little—didn’t I stay all winter alone, when you kept promising me a cousin or friend to stay with me?”

“Well, well, uncle,” said I, “there is one thing for your assurance—cousin Sara has repeatedly declared she would not marry a clergyman!”

“That’s what she has—Sara,” said uncle Theodore, looking rather equivocally in her face, as if he were prepared to overturn whatever she might depose, “do you hold of that mind still?”

“Certainly, sir,” responded Sara, with some ill-concealed hesitation, and not a little confusion, “I am not wont to vacillate much in my opinions.”

“And you make a life-long bargain with me to retain your post as my house-keeper, in presence of cousin Maria as witness, do you?”

“Yes, sir, unless you release me some time, at your pleasure.”

“You are a noble girl, Sara, darling—I’ll buy you that Arabian to-morrow, and you shall have a groom on purpose to attend him;” and my uncle laid his hand tenderly on cousin Sara’s beautiful head, in token of his satisfaction.

By this time it was his stated hour for retiring—he took the “big ha’ Bible” from its place, reverently read a holy psalm, and then commending his household to the care of an Almighty Protector, in a low and fervent prayer, he bade us good night, and left the drawing room.



My uncle Waldron, or Judge Waldron, for he had been promoted to “the bench,” was a bachelor—a hopelessly confirmed bachelor. Not that he under-valued woman—no—he regarded her with the noblest, loftiest, and most rational admiration of any man I ever knew. But his notions were peculiar, and perhaps not a little fastidious in the matter of what a wife should be, so he never proposed himself as a husband to any lady of his widely extended and really valuable circle of acquaintances, to the infinite astonishment of some of them. In the course of long years he became thoroughly tired of being a boarder—of never realizing any of the quiet pleasures and sympathies that cluster round the hearth and the 119 heart of home. So he erected a beautiful villa, just a delightful drive from the city, adorned it within and without with all the decorations and elegancies which could be suggested by the highest refinement of taste, and a liberal expenditure of the amplest means, and then we surely thought, as who would not, that having built his nest, my uncle was about to choose his mate, and pass the winter of his life in the calm sunshine of domestic bliss. But we “reckoned without our host,” in that calculation. Uncle Waldron had other intentions.

Now cousin Sara was the eldest niece in the family circle, and from her very birth she had been uncle Theodore’s acknowledged favorite—even in her extreme babyhood he had condescended to take her in his arms, and rock her for half-an-hour—an instance of partiality, by which none of us could boast of being distinguished. We all wished that we could have been the eldest niece, so we could have been the favorite—how much more we wished we could be just like cousin Sara.

Well, when his house was all complete, uncle Waldron proposed to Sara to assume the responsibilities of its mistress, and threatened, in a way she quite understood, to “cut her off with a shilling,” in case she declined, so she followed her own inclination, and very readily assented.

Cousin Sara was a star of the first magnitude in one of the most elegant and policed literary constellations in her native city. Faultlessly lovely in person, in manners, and in mind, her heart over-flowing with the freshest and most cheerful piety, woman’s brightest ornament, it was a mystery to us all, how she happened to live till she was twenty-seven years old, without taking those responsibilities which most of our sex, without a tithe of her attractions or her abilities, assume, long enough before they have the maturity and richness of twenty-seven invaluable years in their favor—especially strange we thought it, when so many most enviable inducements had been urged upon her acceptance. But nobody seemed to please our fastidious cousin Sara.

When she had been some months at uncle Waldron’s, it became very evident to us, quizzical spies of cousins, who took great pleasure in spending a few weeks with her now and then, that she was more interested in the society and person of the Rev. Robert Greydon, than she was really willing we should discover. She hushed our impertinence in a moment, if we undertook to rally her on the subject, by a peculiarly imploring expression of countenance, which only made us think so all the more. Mr. Greydon, as has been already intimated, was the clergyman of the church where uncle Waldron worshiped. Cousin Sara had often declared that she would not marry a clergyman or a widower. Mr. Greydon, though still a young man, united in his person both those disqualifications, so we managed, in the face of all indications to the contrary, to conclude that we had nothing to fear. If he had not been a widower and clergyman, we should have chosen him, out of all the world, for Sara’s husband—for he possessed all those rare and invaluable excellencies of character, which Sara deserved, if ever a lovely woman did, in the man of her choice.

Mr. Greydon was a very prudent man in his pastoral and social intercourse. He did not wish to give the “silly women” of his parish, who, as in duty bound, would keep a very faithful look-out after him, any occasion to tattle—but the arrangement of the German lessons was just the thing—it afforded him the most unimpeachable excuse for enjoying Sara’s society without sounding an alarum in any body’s ears.



“I would not light the lamp yet, Miss Hastings—this moonlight is so magical,” said Mr. Greydon, as he sat in the bay window of uncle’s drawing-room, one glorious evening in early summer. Indeed it was as lovely an evening, and as fair a scene, as pencil of artist ever aspired to sketch. I was sitting on the broad piazza, trying what my tyro pencil could do with a landscape so wonderfully beautiful.

“You are sad, to-night, Mr. Greydon,” said Sara, desisting from her purpose, and taking a chair by the table that had been drawn near the window.

“No—not sad exactly, Miss Hastings—only of a doubtful mind,” replied Mr. Greydon.

“Indeed!” gayly responded Sara—“but that must not be—it is expressly forbidden in Scripture and—”

“I know it Miss Hastings,” interrupted Mr. Greydon, with forced playfulness in his tone, as if he were determined to rally himself—“but it does not respect any matters of doctrine—rather of practice, I might say. You are always so cheerful and light-hearted, Miss Hastings, it is almost a sin to be moody in your presence.”

“If I had the burden of a pastoral charge”—Sara checked herself—“indeed, I fear it is the advantage of circumstances rather than of temperament, Mr. Greydon,” she concluded.

There was a pause—the German lesson was finished long ago—Sara had been singing, and Mr. Greydon accompanying her piano with the mellow tones of his flute. There was a hush on the air, and a hush upon our spirits. Perhaps it was the moonlight—perhaps it was the music—I don’t know—but it became oppressive, and I began to feel that it was somebody’s duty to relieve somebody’s embarrassment, by introducing a new theme for conversation, and I was about to draw their attention to some glorious shadows falling on the water in the distance, when Mr. Greydon spoke.

“Miss Hastings, I have heard—but I hope it is not true—that you have declared your intention never to marry a clergyman.”

“Indeed! Mr. Greydon—” stammered Sara, “I—who can have so mis—people report so many—” Sara stopped; I never knew her self-possession so completely recreant. Her heart assured her that if such had been her resolution at any time, certain recent circumstances had essentially shaken her purposes—so she could not assent; and to deny it just at this point would make her more uncomfortable 120 still. She was about to conclude the remark as a very impertinent one, when Mr. Greydon continued,

“I hope that determination is not invincible, Miss Hastings; my future happiness depends—”

My sense of honor forbade my remaining in that neighborhood any longer. I had innocently heard already more than was intended for the ears of a third party; so I gathered up my drawing materials with what haste I could, and without the sound of a foot-fall, made good my retreat to the library.

I did not see cousin Sara again till we sat at the breakfast-table the next morning, and then she looked as if she had attained the acme of a pure and rational happiness. I never saw her half so lovely—half so cheerful—half so spiritual; the dream of her whole life seemed about to unfold into a blessed reality. As we sat in her dressing-room, after breakfast, with a simplicity and confidence that made me love and admire her more than ever, she told me of her engagement with the Rev. Robert Greydon.

I opened my eyes and threw down my sewing in the most mischievous surprise.

“Why, Sara Hastings! you have said a thousand times you would not marry a minister! How can I believe you?”

“O, don’t, Maria—pray show me a little mercy; do you think, uncle was so wicked as to tell Mr. Greydon so! The truth is, young ladies had better not make such resolutions, and if they do, it is better not to express them. People cannot tell with much certainty what they will do, and what they will not, till the inducement is before them.”

I assented to Sara’s philosophy, declared I never would say any such thing, and with a kiss on her glowing cheek, I heartily congratulated her, and told how sincerely I rejoiced at her choice, and her prospect of earthly happiness.



There is to be a wedding at Uncle Waldron’s early in September, and I am to be the first bridemaid! Truly an enviable appointment. Sweet Sara Hastings will be the bride—Mr. Greydon the proud and happy bridegroom. My dear old uncle will give away his “treasure,” and with her his villa and all its elegant arrangements, as “a marriage dower.” The villa is to become the “manse,” and uncle has, of course, stipulated that he shall, through his whole natural life, be regarded as one of the indisputable fixtures of the establishment.








The morn is looking on the lake,

  Beside the ruined abbey;

And its fingers white on the waters shake,

Like the quivering curls of a silver snake,

For the pale old moon it must keep its wake

  In the dark clouds thick and shaggy!

The night-wind hath a moaning tone,

  And it cometh moaning by;

The Hart’s-tongue on the ancient stone,

That years have crumbled, one by one,

Answereth—sometimes like a groan,

  And sometimes like a sigh.


A little light through the forest-trees

  Is twinkling very bright,

Like a distant star upon waveless seas,

  Or a glow-worm of the night;

’Tis scarcely bigger than a pin,

  The little light of the village inn!


It is a parlor dimly lit,

And shadows on the arras flit;

Shadows here and shadows there,

Shadows shifting everywhere,

Very thin and very tall,

Moving, mingling on the wall—

Till they make one shadow all!


An old clock in the corner stands,

  Clicking! clicking! all the while;

And its long and shadowy hands

Would seem to say this hour is man’s,

But Life hath swiftly running sands,

  And may wither in a smile.


A fire is blazing upon the hearth,

And it crackles aloud as if in mirth;

By its flickering flames you may chance to see

There are six men sitting in groups of three;

They laugh and talk—they drink and drain

Their goblets, till to drink is pain,

And the eyes are brighter than the brain.


Three gamble at the pictured vice,

And three upheave the rattling dice,

    The cards go round—

    The boxes sound—

A king!—an ace!!—a deuce!—a doublet!!

For luck a laugh—for loss a goblet;

An aching smile and a muttered curse,

A beating heart ’gainst a broken purse,

Ha! ha! ha! ha! how wild the din

Of hearts that lose and hearts that win!





Near the corner, and near the clock,

Sits a man in a dingy frock;


A slouchèd hat on his head wears he,

So sunken his eyes you cannot see;

His clothes are turned of a rusty hue,

All worn with age and damp with dew,

A traveler! I’ll be sworn he be,

This stranger man so strange to see,

Weary with driving adown the lea;

He hath ridden hard—he hath ridden long,

And would like a meal more than a song!


The rattling dice come rattling down!

  The pictured tablets glide;

But a deeper shade on the light hath grown

  Of the parlor dim and wide,

And the embers utter a fitful blaze

  On the forms that sit beside:

For three look white in its ghastly rays—

White as the corpse of ended days—

While three are dark, and yet darker gaze

On the cards and dice with which each one plays

  In the parlor dim and wide!


And near the corner—near the clock—

  In silence sitteth still,

The stranger motionless as a rock—

The stranger man with a dingy frock—

Who entered the room without nod or knock,

  As quietly as a rill.


Clicking!—clicking!—all the while,

  The old clock soundeth on,

As if it never had seen a smile,

But was kin to that in the abbey-aisle—

  Chiming for mortals gone!


Click—click! and hearts are beating

  High with the fate of game;

Click—click! the clock is repeating

  Its lesson still the same—

But one has uttered a fearful word,

And started up like a startled bird,

  To dash the dice-box down;

And with the click of the ancient clock

Is heard the click of a pistol’s cock—

And then—the deep fall, in a sudden shock,

  Of a body lifeless grown.


The stranger is standing beside the board—

The stranger that entered without a word—

And to five who with cowardice quail and quake,

As white as the moon looking on the lake,

It was thus that the noiseless stranger spake:—


“The blood which has ceased in the veins to run

Of this form that shall nevermore feel the sun,

This blood—a score of years ago—

Belonged to a noble hidalgo,

With a great estate and a greater name,

And a palace proud, and a beauteous dame,

And a little child—his only heir—

Soft as the dew in the morning air,

And as opening roses fresh and fair.


“And it was this noble hidalgo

Who sat in this chamber dim and low,

But now a score of years ago,

With a youth who bore beside his name,

Which had never known the weight of blame,

A treasure placed in his trusty hand

By the sovereign lord of this mighty land.


“And it was in this chamber dim and low,

As the pendulum wide swung to and fro,

That this youth and the high-born hidalgo

  Rattled a cursèd horn;

That they played for the treasures of the king,

Played till the cocks began to sing.

And the youth had become a worthless thing—

  A mark for shame and scorn.


“The youth knelt down at the noble’s feet,

And, weeping, prayed that he should not meet

The eyes of his master, the injured king,

Who had trusted him well—a worthless thing!

Yet he turned, the wretch! to stalk away,

When a cry arrested his cruel way,

And he heard a voice in agony say—

A voice departing from its clay—

‘It shall follow thy house—it shall blast thy pride—

It shall be as a thorn in thine aching side—

Yea, learn, unpitying child of sin,

Not always lucky are those who win;

For they who would thrive with unthrifty clod,

Who would reap where fortune’s wheel hath trod,

Are the foes of man and the cursed of God!’

The blood which has ceased in the veins to run

Of this form that shall nevermore feel the sun,

This blood—a score of years ago—

Belonged to a noble hidalgo,

And I am—”


            Here the ancient clock,

  With a rusty, rumbling sound,

Shook as it struck—and the matin cock

Answered the solemn chime of the clock,

  Till it echoed round and round!


The embers that on the hearth-stone lay

Down into ashes dropped away,

While from the lattice worn and white,

In the moonshine waning with the night,

A steed was seen like the drifted snow

As it galloped across the plain below,

Swift as an arrow from its bow;

With the slouchèd hat and the dingy frock

Of the figure that sat near the corner and clock,

And which came and went without nod or knock.


And they that remained on each other bent

  Glances so dim and drear,

That neither could tell what the other meant,

Save that in all there was fear blent

With a something which told them Heaven-sent

  Was the doom of the dead man there.


One was a laborer tough and tanned,

With the toil of tilling his meager land;

The next, a veteran who did wield

The sword on many a bloody field;

The third, a friar grave or gay,

As chase or chancel led the way,

With shaven crown and cassock gray;

The fourth, a publican, sorry elf!

Who cared for no one but himself;

And the last, a chield, as we often ken,

Unknowing their ways in the walks of men.


And these departed homeward all,

  Far holier than they came;

For the sights which their visions did appall—

The signs and sights in the haunted hall—

Like to the writing on the wall,

  Spoke with a tongue of flame.





Torches are gleaming to and fro,

  In the abbey’s ancient vault;

While a mute procession slowly go

Into its mouldering depths below,

  And, in solemn order, halt!


A monk hath chanted the midnight mass

For a soul that tempted its final pass;

And the little, gloomy sacristan

Striveth to soothe an aged man,

As they lift from the blazoned bier

  The stately drooping pall;

And the old man sees him lying there

  His son—his heir—his all!


Thou canst not soothe him, sacristan,

  Go to thy cord and corse—

It is a fiend which gnaws that man;

  The worst of fiends—Remorse!

It is a fiend which whispereth still,

Or noon or night, or well or ill,

From the dark caverns of the past,

Through all their chambers dim and vast,

“For they who would thrive with unthrifty clod,

Who would reap where fortune’s wheel hath trod,

Are the foes of man and the cursed of God!”


The lights have vanished—and the gate

Of the abbey closed up desolate,

And all is silent as before

The key was turned in that rusty door,

To add a slumbering mortal more

To its never, never failing store;

All is silent save the owl

That moans like a monk from beneath his cowl,

As the moon is looking on the lake,


  Beside the ruined abbey;

And its fingers white on the waters shake,

Like the quivering curls of a silver snake,

For the pale old moon it must keep its wake

  In the dark clouds thick and shaggy!

The night-wind hath a moaning tone,

  And it cometh moaning by;

The Hart’s-tongue on the ancient stone,

That years have crumbled, one by one,

Answereth—sometimes like a groan,

  And sometimes like a sigh.





Heart that beateth, trembleth, yearneth,

  Now with grief and pain assailed,

Now with joy triumphant burneth,

  Now in sorrow veiled;

Moveless us the wave-worn rock

  In the battle’s deadly shock,

When the charging lines advance,

    Doom on every lance;

Yet melting at some mimic show,

    Or plaintive tale of wo!


Faint with love—of conquest proud—

  Seared with hate—with fury riven,

Like the fire-armed thunder-cloud

  By the tempest driven:

Hark! the chords with rapture swell,

  Flood on flood melodious flowing,

Sudden! strikes the passing bell,

Swinging with reverbing knell,

  While the soul is going!


Though at times, “Oh, Death!” I cry,

  “Ope the door, thy son entreateth!”

Though from life I strive to fly,

  Still the heart-clock beateth—

No, not yet I wish for thee,

  Gaunt and pale remorseless king!

Soon, too soon, thou’lt come for me,

  O’er life triumphing.


Glow and dance in every vein,

  Crimson current, ruby river,

To thy source return again,

As the teeming summer-rain

Seeks again the parent main,

  The all-bounteous giver;

Beat, dear heart, against my breast,

  Tell me thou art there again—

Life and thee together rest

  In that hold of joy and pain—

Stronghold yet of life thou art,

  Restless, ever-working heart!


Night comes draped in shadows sombre,

  Morning robed in light appears,

Minutes, hours, withouten number,

  Days and months and years

Pass like dreams; yet still thou art

Ever busy, restless heart!


When his doom the captive heareth,

  How thy summons, stroke on stroke,

Tells the fatal moment neareth,

  Sounding like the heavy stroke

  Distant heard as falls the oak!


How the maiden fair would hide

  Thee within her bosom white,

Still against her tender side

  Throbs the soft delight;

Every pulse reveals the flame,

  Every fibre softly thrills,

But how innocent the shame

  That her bosom fills.


In the hero, firm as steel,

  In the virgin, soft as snow,

In the coward, citadel

  Where the recreant blood doth go

  Hiding from the sight of foe.

In the mother’s anxious breast

Who can picture thy unrest?

  When her babe lies low—

With the fitful fever burning,

No relief—still restless turning

  Ever to and fro!

In the bride what mixed commotion

  When the words, “Be man and wife”

Thrill her with that soft emotion

  Known but once in life.


Priceless jewel! hidden treasure!

  All the world to thee is naught;

Working loom of ceaseless pleasure,

Weaving without stint or measure

  Woof and web of thought:

Hive of Life! where drone and bee

Struggle for the mastery,

In the never-ceasing motion,

Like a great star in the ocean,

Shines the soul! thy heavenly part,

  Throbbing, life-assuring heart!







I, the Doctor Sian Seng to Tching-bit-ha-ki.

On receipt of this letter forthwith go to Houang-xa, to the yellow temple of Fo, and burn upon the altar a stick of camphor for me, for I have arrived safely at Paris. I have sailed five thousand three hundred and twenty leagues since my embarkation at Hoang-Ho, with peril of life beneath my feet the whole voyage—and Providence has protected me.

May my ancestors deign to watch over me more than ever at this moment! Paris is a field of battle, where bullets are represented by wheels and horses; those who have neither carriage nor horses, perish miserably in the flower of their age. There are seventeen hospitals for the wounded; I saw one yesterday with this inscription, in large letters, “Hospital for Incurables.” The wounded who are carried there, know when they enter that they will never come out alive—they know their fate! It is very charitable on the part of the doctors. You can now see that the Barbarians understand civilization!

Notwithstanding the sage precepts of Li-ki, and the law of Menu, I have purchased a carriage on four wheels, drawn by horses, and have wept in anticipation of the unhappy fate of those I am about to send to the “Hospital for Incurables;” but there are but two modes of living in Paris—you must crush others, or be crushed yourself. I think it most prudent to do the first.

I went down to the river to make my ablutions, and was about to commence this holy act, when a policeman threatened me with his baton. In looking at the water, I was consoled for the deprivation, as it had not the pure and limpid flow of our own Yu-ho, which runs by Pekin under the marble bridge of Pekiao. The Seine is a dirty yellow stream, which descends to the ocean for a bath. I shall wait until it comes back!

I was told that Christians take a bath at home, which costs two francs. I called for one, and was furnished with an iron box, very much resembling the coffins in the cemetery of Ming-tang-y; one gets into them and lies upon the back, with the hands crossed upon the breast, like a true believer who has died in the faith of Fo.

In Paris, each house is governed by a tyrant, who is called a porter. There are twenty thousand porters here, who make a million of inhabitants unhappy and desolate. They sometimes make a Revolution to overturn a poor devil, called a king; but they have never overturned the twenty thousand porters. Mine receives my orders with loud explosions of laughter, and when I threaten him, he says to me, “You are a Chinaman!” Since he thinks to insult me by calling me by the name of my country, I make the matter equal by crying, “And you are a Frenchman!”

Render insult for insult,” says the sage Menu. These things have most astonished me in Paris.

My first duty (in quality of my rank in the Ming 124 tang, the greatest society of savans in the universe) has been to visit the Royal Library, renowned here as “a vast depot of all human knowledge.” This asylum of meditation, of reflection and study, is situated in the most noisy street in the city; the millions of books it contains shake continually with the passage of carriages and other vehicles. It is very much as if you and I should go for instruction between the bridge Tchoung-yu-Ho-Khias, where all the cats in Pekin are sold, and the street Toung-Kiang-mi-Kiang, where salutes are fired night and day!

One of the librarians received me with great politeness, and offered me a chair.

“Sir,” said I, in tolerable French, “I would be much obliged if you could lend me, for a few moments, the ‘History of the Dynasties of the Five Brothers Loung, and of the sixty-four Ché-ti’? You know that these glorious reigns commenced immediately after the third race of the first emperors—those of the Jin-Hoang, or the Emperors of Men, to distinguish them from the second race, called Ti-Hoang, or Emperors of the Earth.”

The savant did not appear as if he knew it. He put into his nose some of the forbidden opium, and after reflecting awhile, said,

“Lao-yé, we have not that.”

He appeared pleased to show me that he understood that “Lao-yé” was equivalent to “sir,” and repeated it a thousand times during our conversation.

“You know, sir,” said I, continuing, “that after the glorious reigns of Koung-san-che, of Tchen Min, of Y-ti-ché, and of Houx-toun-che, came the reigns, still more glorious, of the seventy-one families, and that so much glory was only effaced by the birth of the immortal Emperor Ki, the greatest musician the world ever saw, and the inventor of Chinese politeness. I would like to consult, in this ‘vast depôt of all human knowledge,’ the history of the immortal Ki.”

The nose of the philosophe received a second time a pinch of the forbidden opium. He then opened an enormous handkerchief of Madras, and suddenly jerking the head, neck, and hand, made a great noise resembling that of a prolonged stroke upon a gong. When this tempest of the brain had passed by, he folded up his Madras, drew it five times across his face, and said,

“We have not the history of the immortal Ki, your emperor.”

“You have nothing, then,” said I, with that calmness which arises from wisdom, and which is humiliating to those Barbarians whom the genius of Menu has never enlightened.

The learned man crossed his hands and inclined his head, shutting his eyes, which means “Nothing,” in the language of the universe.

Nevertheless, I continued my requests.

“Since you have no books in this ‘vast depôt of all human knowledge,’ have you any maps?”

“Oh, maps!” said he, with the smile of a resuscitated savant, “we have all kinds of maps, from the map of the Roman Emperor Theodosius to that of ‘dame de cœur.’”

This answer, I have since been told, is a bon mot, apparently made by this man of study to relieve his mind of ennui.

“Will you then show me,” said I, “the map of the Celestial Empire, called Tai-thsing-i-thoung icki?”

The Madras again covered the visage of the savant; the box of opium was exhibited, and a shake of the head, covered with a white powder, announced to me that the map I sought did not exist at this vast depôt.

“Wait,” said he to me, with a joyous expression, “I can, nevertheless, show you a few Chinese books which will please you. Follow me, lao-yé.”

I followed him.

We descended into some subterranean galleries, like to those of the Indian temples of the “Elephant.” The air was infected with camphor and whale oil. Right and left one could see by the twilight a great quantity of busts, in plaster, of the great men of France, all dead—because, I am told, there are never any living great ones there.

“See!” said my conductor, “this is the shelf of Chinese books.”

They were Persian.

I thanked the philosophe with that simple politeness which was invented by our immortal Ki, and left the library.

As I passed to my lodgings, I saw a crowd collected near some scaffolding; and on inquiring of my coachman what was the cause of it, was told that they were erecting a monument to a great man, dead two hundred years ago, whose name was Molière. He composed chefs-d’œuvre, which were hissed at their performance; he was persecuted by the court, martyrized by his wife and his creditors, and died miserably at the theatre between two suet candles. They refused the honors of burial to his remains; and now, two hundred years after his death, his countrymen, to show their gratitude, erect a monument to his memory, to recompense his sufferings.

In most things the French are lively and mercurial; but in the matter of gratitude, they take two centuries for reflection.

There is no great stone in the valley which has not “the ambition to emulate Mount Tergyton,” says a verse of Li-Ki; so at Paris they have taken it into their heads to imitate our large and endless Street of Tranquillity, “Tchang-ngan-Kiai,” which runs the whole length of the imperial palace at Pekin, and terminates at the most beautiful of the seventeen gates of the city, “Thsiam Men,” the gate of “Military Glory.”

I felt pride while traversing their Rue Rivoli, in thinking what a miserable imitation it was of our incomparable “tchang-ngan-Kiai;” my national vanity was appeased.

It was in following this street that I came to another palace, inhabited by the four hundred and seventy emperors who govern Paris, France, and Africa, and whom they call “Deputies.” One must have a little dirty piece of paper to gain admittance 125 there. You give this little paper to a man with a red face and a saucy-looking nose, who permits you to enter. The four hundred and seventy emperors, each sit at the bottom of a dark well, which seems lighted by the moon in her last quarter. An old emperor, with a pleasing and paternal countenance, named Mr. Sosé, governs the four hundred and seventy others, by playing tunes upon a little silver bell. This spectacle is very amusing. The emperors are all badly dressed and coiffé. They talk a great deal—walk about—play tricks—sleep, or write letters to their wives, while an emperor, perched up on a high seat, sings in a low voice something mysterious, to a monotonous air, which resembles our “Hymn to our Ancestors,” without the accompaniment of our national music. Each emperor has the right to mount this seat, and sing to himself his favorite song, turning his back upon Mr. Sosé. I asked a person sitting by me, “What they called this play?” The “Representative Government,” he replied.

Salutes are not fired at Paris, except on the birth-day of the king, which renders a sojourn here almost insupportable. I suppose this wonderful spectacle does not amuse the inhabitants, since they only give it once a year; and if it does not, why do they have it even on the king’s birth-day? I asked this question of a man whom one calls a friend here, one Mr. Lefort, my neighbor at my unfurnished lodgings, who answered, “I do not understand you.”

This answer is made to me every day. One would imagine I spoke to them in Chinese.

Being deprived of these “feux de joie,” which delight us at Pekin, each evening I go to spend a few hours at the Opera, which is a theatre where they pay public screamers salaries of fifty thousand francs per annum. When a young man frightens his family by his cries, they shut him up in a place they call “the Conservatory,” where a professor of screaming gives him lessons for twenty-four moons. The pupil then enters the Opera, and acts a part before fifty copper instruments, which make a thousand times more noise than he does himself. You can well comprehend that a good Chinaman, habituated from infancy to the soft melody of the “Hymn to Aurora,” does not feel inclined to have his ears bored twice by these public screamers at the Opera; so I was about to make my adieu to the theatre the first evening, but having learned that, with a contradiction peculiarly French, they performed other pieces, in which not a word was said, I continued my visits. I was delighted with this spectacle, which they call the “ballet.” Nothing is so admirable at Paris as this performance; so that when seeing it one does not even regret Pekin. Figure to yourself fifty women, with Chinese feet, dancing “à ravir” without uttering a word. I have taken a box for all the “ballets.”

There is a danseuse among them called Alexandrine, and surnamed Figuranté. I suppose on account of her fine figure. She has splendid black hair, which flows down in torrents to her feet; and those feet so small that, in her perpetual whirlpool of pirouettes and entrechats, they disappear from the sight. For ten nights, would you believe it, I have watched this “danseuse” with particular attention, forgetting the high mission with which I was entrusted, and the forty revolutions of twelve moons which rest upon my head.

One evening the door of my box opened and a man entered, bowing profoundly, and with much respect, said, “Light of the Celestial Empire, Star of Tien, I have a favor to ask.”

I made him the universal sign which means, “Speak.” He did speak.

“I am a decorator of the Opera,” said he, “and am at this moment putting the finishing touches to a Chinese Kiosque for the new ballet of “China Opened, or the Loves of Mademoiselle Flambeau, of Pekin;” may I request you to come, during the interval of the acts, and give a glance at my work, and suggest any improvement that may strike you?”

“Sir,” replied I, “your request is not disagreeable. Show me the way—I will follow you.”

We walked for some time along subterranean damp galleries until we arrived in the “coulisses” of the Opera. The decorator showed me his work, and I had nothing but praise to offer him; it was in the most exquisite Chinese taste.

There was a soft whispering near us of sweet and girlish voices, which caused me to turn suddenly. It was a group of young danseuses, who profited by the interval to gossip a little to relieve themselves, like mutes delivered from a régime forcé. A blaze of light made me close my eyes—Mademoiselle Alexandrine was there.

I looked for my friend the decorator to keep me in countenance, but he had disappeared.

I invoked the spirits of my glorious ancestors, and asked of them courage and calmness of mind, those two virtues so necessary in love and war.

Mademoiselle Alexandrine had the carriage of a queen; her well-rounded and graceful person was sustained solely by her left foot, upon which she stood proudly, while the right one undulated from right to left, the heel and toe only touching the floor. My eyes followed that wonderful foot and never left it.

Imagine my astonishment when I heard the mellifluous voice of Mademoiselle addressing me with a boldness worthy of a captain in our Imperial Tiger Guard.

“Will you do us the honor, sir, to assist at the first representation of the Ballet Chinois?”

I quitted the foot to look up at the face of the danseuse, and answered with a well imitated Parisian accent, “I should be delighted to be there, Mademoiselle, to put my eyes at your feet.”

Mademoiselle Alexandrine took me caressingly by the arm, and made me promenade with her behind the scene.

“So it seems, sir, that China really exists, and that the Yellow river is not a fable? Tell me, are not all Chinamen made of porcelain? Do they really walk and talk like you and me? I did not know that 126 there were any other Chinamen than our Auriol de Franconi—do you know Auriol?”

All these questions were asked so rapidly as to defy answer. At her last word, the danseuse, called upon the stage by a signal, quitted suddenly my arm, and bounded away with the grace and springiness of a gazelle, humming the air to which she was to dance. I awaited her return to answer her questions; but when she again took my arm, she had apparently forgotten them; her gayety had disappeared—care contracted her brow.

“Have you noticed how cold the audience is this evening?” said she at length. “Is there an Opera in your country?”

“No, Mademoiselle.”

“What a miserable country! Without an Opera! What do you do, then?”

“One is miserable s’ennuie, Mademoiselle, because you are not there!”

“That is very gallant. By the bye, you have beautiful fans in your country; the nephew of a peer of France gave me a Chinese fan as a New Year’s gift—un bijou adorable; the sticks were of ivory, with incrustations of silver filigree work, and the picture of two yellow cats playing with their tails as they ran in a circle; but I lost it at ‘Muzard’s.’”

“It is very easy to replace it, Mademoiselle; I brought thirty-three with me, made at the celebrated manufactory of Zhe-hol.”

“Is it possible! And what will you do with such a collection?”

“They are intended as presents for the wives of ministers and ambassadors.”

“Bah! the wives of ministers will laugh at your fans; and they are only old withered faces! If I had your thirty-three fans, I would make all the first danseuses in Paris die of chagrin.”

“Mademoiselle, they shall be at your door to-morrow morning.”

“No one can be more French than you, sir; but who would have expected it of a Chinaman. I will give you my address—“Mademoiselle Alexandrine, de Saint Phar, Rue de Provence, on the first floor.” My porter receives my presents any time after seven o’clock in the morning, and places them scrupulously in the hand of my chambermaid after mid-day.”

She made a pirouette, and disappeared.

Returning to my hotel after the Opera, I wished to meditate upon my position, but my ideas wandered. You know my harem of Khé-Emil—it is the most modest of harems—scarcely can one count in it fifteen women of Zhe-hol of Tartar blood, and as many of Thong-Chou-fo, of pure Chinese race, not to speak of some twenty or more odalisques, maintained merely as decorations to the seraglio. Well, if Mademoiselle entered that harem, she would eclipse my favorites among its women, as the light of the full moon puts out the morning star. Yes, I have, unhappily, discovered that her face charms me more than my whole thirty, shut up in my modest harem. It is an unhappy fate! Happy are the three mandarins of the seventh class, who have accompanied me to Paris. They dine at the Rocher de Cancale; they eat beef in spite of the beard of Menu; they attend the minister’s soirées, and know nothing of the exquisite foot of Mademoiselle Alexandrine de St. Phar.

The next morning at eight o’clock, I sent to her porter the thirty-three fans, with a box of the delicious tea of “Satouran.”

In the afternoon I dressed myself in court costume, my mandarin’s cap of canary-yellow, ornamented with a plume of Leu-tze, and long robe of the color clair de la lune, with gloves of citron-colored crape. My glass told me I resembled the young Tcheon, the Prince of Light, and Son of the Morning. Flattered by my mirror, I went to visit Mademoiselle Alexandrine, and was introduced with the most surprising facility.

Her dress costume only rendered her more beautiful; her foot alone was always the same. It seemed to live in a perpetual motion; one might well say that it contained the soul of the danseuse, and that she thought with her dear little toes.

“Sir,” said she, taking me familiarly by the hands, “I am the happiest girl in the world! your present is truly royal. Sit down upon this chair, and let us converse a little. I wish to present to you my little sister, a perfect angel, as you’ll see.”

A young girl about twelve years old, as graceful as a fawn, leaped into my arms, and seized my mandarin’s cap from my head.

“What do you think of her,” said the danseuse.

“She is your sister,” said I, with an expressive glance.

“Still gallant, dear doctor!”

“What is her name, Mademoiselle?”

“She has none yet, doctor; she waits for a godfather—it is the custom at the Opera. Will you be hers?”

“Very willingly, Mademoiselle.”

“Give her, then, a pretty name—some name of your country.”

“Very well; then I name her ‘Dileri,’ which is a Mogul name.”

“What does it mean?”

Light of the eyes. Does it please you, Mademoiselle?”

“Dileri is charming! Do the Moguls have such soft names, doctor?—and they are still Moguls. It is wonderful! Mademoiselle Dileri, thank your godfather.”

With that marvellous refinement with which the spirit of the great Fo has imbued his faithful followers, and which renders them superior to all of human kind, I asked Mademoiselle Alexandrine, negligently, “if she had any taste for marriage?”

“Ah!” said she, crossing her beautiful feet upon a footstool of crimson velvet, “it is not marriage that I fear, it is the husband. You do not know French husbands, dear doctor. Such egotists! They marry a pretty woman to have a slave, in spite of the law which forbids trading in human flesh; and when they have her fast enchained, they show her as a curiosity to their friends to excite their envy. Well, 127 since China is now opened, we will go to China to seek husbands. Dear doctor, you will not find in all Paris a husband who would give his wife thirty-three fans without any pretension, as if he merely said, ‘good-day!’ Are the Chinamen good husbands, doctor?”

“Mademoiselle, ’twas a Chinaman who invented the honeymoon!”

“I do not doubt it. What a pity the Chinawomen have such queer eyes.”

“For that reason we come to seek wives at Paris.”

“Truly, doctor, you are adorable! and I am confused by your kindness. I do not know how to express my sense of your compliments, and gratitude for your splendid presents. May I not offer you a box in the fourth tier for your suite? Giselle is performed to-morrow. My cousin has written a play for the Theatre d’Ambigu; I will ask him for a box for you this evening. Perhaps you will accept a free ticket for a month on the railroad to Rouen.”

“Thanks, Mademoiselle! I am as grateful for your kind offers as if I had accepted them. But I have a favor to ask.”

“It is already granted—speak.”

“I have brought with me some Indian ink, and I beg you will permit me to make a picture of your right foot.”

“What a Chinese idea!” cried the danseuse, with a rich burst of merry laughter. “Do you call that a favor? Take your crayon, dear doctor, I give you up my foot; will you copy it au naturel, or in an odalisque’s sandal?”

“I will paint it as it is at this moment.”

“As you like; meantime I will amuse myself and little sister by admiring your thirty fans.”

At the third fan I had a striking resemblance of the wonderful foot. The danseuse glanced at it and uttered a cry of admiration, saying,

“Dear doctor, you have taken it with a dash of the pencil.”

“Mademoiselle,” answered I, “it is said of me that I could copy the wind, if I could see it pass. I have copied your foot which is more agile than the wind.”

“If you continue these compliments, doctor, I am afraid I shall fall in love with you; I, who the other day shut my door in the face of a Greek prince and two bankers.”

The candor of innocence was imprinted on the features of the danseuse; and I bowed my head in reverence before this ingenuous woman, who unveiled her heart to me without reserve. In taking leave of her I was allowed to touch with my lips the ends of fingers which rivaled her feet in beauty.

The Secretary for Foreign Affairs awaited me at five o’clock, to inquire concerning the ceremonies used at Zhe-hol and at Pekin, at the reception of European ambassadors, and to sound me in regard to certain political secrets relating to the Chinese empire and Queen Victoria.

During the audience I experienced many distractions and made many mistakes. May Ti-en grant that my errors may not one day cause trouble to the Celestial Empire. Whilst the great minister of the Christians was speaking to me, I was thinking of the foot of Mademoiselle Alexandrine St. Phar! You see that that foot will overturn Pekin yet!

After dinner, a perfumed billet, the paper of which resembled a butterfly’s wing, was brought to me, and I read as follows:

Dear Doctor,—I hear that you have brought to this country numberless Chinese curiosities. Dileri, your charming god-daughter, is so much delighted in looking at your fans, that she longs to know all the wealth of her godfather; a childish folly! But I have promised her to visit you to-morrow at 12 o’clock.

“Your god-daughter kisses you between the eyes, and I place you at my feet.

Alexandrine St. Phar.

You know, my dear Tching-bit-ha-ki, that I have not brought with me many of our toys. I only provided a few as presents to attachés’ wives, and perhaps ministers. Happily, when I received the billet of Mademoiselle Alexandrine, I had not yet distributed any of them; nevertheless, I felt that my collection was too contemptible to be honored with a glance from the divine danseuse, and I resolved to add to it before showing it to her. I obtained all the information I could, and then went to Darbo’s, Rue Richelieu, and to Gamba’s, Rue Neuve de Capucines—two merchants of celebrity in Chinoiseries. I purchased at these shops two screens, a pagoda of rice, two boxes of cloves, four tulip vases, two complete services of porcelain, with a chamber tea service, a table of sandal wood, inlaid with cypress, four figures of mandarins in clay from Pei-ho, twelve pairs of embroidered slippers, a shop in miniature, a chamberlain with his wand of office, two leaves of tam-tam, a parasol, two lions frisés, and a copy of the royal carriage of the brother of the sun and moon, the Emperor Tsieng-Long.

Most of these Chinoiseries were made in Paris, and I doubted particularly the royal carriage; but the imitation was so good, that a mandarin only of the first class could distinguish the true from the counterfeit. I did not cheapen these things, and paid the bill, an enormous sum—thirty-seven hundred francs.

Night arrived; I went to bed to enjoy dreams of happiness to come, and slept with my copy of the divine foot in my hand. My first thought in the early morning was to put my Chinese riches in order, to exhibit them to the best advantage. What a happiness, said I to myself, if she will deign to point her foot to some one of these bagatelles, and say, in her flute-like tones,

“Dear doctor, give me that for my boudoir.”

At length 12 o’clock struck, and my door opened.

Oh! the City of Houris will be one day destroyed for having forgotten to produce Mademoiselle Alexandrine de St. Phar! I was thunderstruck at her morning beauty. The divine danseuse led her little sister by the hand. She threw her hat and shawl upon the first chair, pressed my hands, ran about the room, pirouetting before each Chinoiserie with cries of pleasure and joy which went to my very 128 heart. When she had exhausted every exclamation of delight, she said to me,

“Dear doctor, I am sorry to have brought your god-daughter with me—she asks for every thing she sees. Oh, these children! one should never show them any thing. It is true I am somewhat of a child in that way, too. If I had to choose some one of these things, I should be in great embarrassment, and would not dare to do it, lest I should to-morrow regret that I had not taken something else.”

In saying these words with delicious volubility, she pushed out her right foot from the protection of the shortest of robes. She might have seduced the most virtuous Lama of Lin-Ching.

“Mademoiselle,” said I, “permit me to point out a plan to avoid that difficulty.”

“Ah, will you! Dear doctor, tell me this plan!”

“Will you swear to act according to it?”

“I swear it!”

“You will keep your oath?”

“I will.”

“Well, Mademoiselle, take them all.”

The divine danseuse raised her arms gracefully, threw back her queenly head, and her bosom of ivory palpitated with sudden gladness, like the throat of a bird that sings with very happiness.

“You are a rare fellow,” cried she; “after your death, your body should be embalmed, and your tomb be a ‘Mecca’ for all true gallants from thenceforth forever. But, dear doctor, remember that I am a woman. You do not know to what you expose yourself. Suppose I were to take you at your word?”

“I should say you were a woman of your word, and knew how to keep an oath.”

“No, no, dear doctor, no joking! you wish to try me!”

“Not in the least; I speak seriously. All these curiosities belong to me no longer—they are yours.”

“Then you must be the brother of the sun and moon and cousin to the seven stars in disguise. Long live the Emperor!”

[Conclusion in our next.





Come an’ sit thee doon langside me now, my ain, my darling Sue,

Let your laddie view those e’es, lass, that match yon heaven’s blue:

Dearie, pit that wee saft han’ in mine, whiles swear that ye’ll be true

To Willie when he’s gane awa’, to fight for hame an’ you.


Here’s a bonnie sprig o’ broom, I plucked it yander on the lea,

Pit it in the auld ha’ Bible, ’twill mind thee aft o’ me,

Ken ye weel the motto o’ the broom? ’tis “hope an’ constancy;”

An’ dinna, lass, forgit me when I am far awa’ frae thee.


Ye will roam where we hae roamed, lassie, langside the mountain rill,

An’ think how aft thegither we hae watched the brooklet fill:

Ye will miss my step come bounding ’mang the heather on the hill,

But in spirit I’ll be there, lass, an’ guard thee frae all ill.


When the moon is saftly beaming, love, an’ a’ are wrapt in sleep,

When starlets frae the curtains o’ the sky come forth an’ peep,

When the heath-bell bends its tiny head, while dew-draps o’er it weep,

’Tis then my spirit shall its welcome vigil o’er thine keep.


When the haly Sabbath morn comes roun’, an’ sweet the kirk bells ring,

When wee birds wake the dingle with the songs o’ praise they sing,

When ye bend before the throne o’ Him to whom all praise we bring,

Oh! ask him then to guide me, lass, an’ guard me with His wing.





This glorious sunset I behold,

  This lovely closing scene of day,

The western sky embathed in gold,

  The calm, low murmurings that play

    Upon the quiet ear of eve;—

Yon fields, in waving beauty spread,

  The summer-rose now paling here,

The sunflower’s gently drooping head,

  Proclaim the day, the hour near,

    O’er which, for aye, I vainly grieve!


No more the rapture now, that grew

  Within our hearts, pale sleeping one!

While dwelling on that gorgeous view

  Unfolded by the setting sun—

    No more thy loved, thy lonely flowers

Will bend to kiss the gentle hand

  Outstretched to train their heavenward bloom;

No more that angel form will stand

  Beside me, in the twilight gloom,

    To light with love my darkened hours!







A light was seen gleaming at an unusual hour, in one of the rooms of —— college. The sole occupant of said room was Willard Carlton, a member of the junior class. He was a diligent and successful student, but was not wont to trim the midnight lamp. By a wise employment of sunlight, by avoiding the loss of isolated moments, he accomplished as much mental labor as the laws of health would allow, and devoted a large portion of the night to refreshing sleep.

The light attracted the attention of a friend and fellow student, who was laying the foundation of a life of suffering, by prolonging his night studies to the morning hours. He repaired to Carlton’s room, and found him leaning upon his table, his countenance marked with deep dejection.

“Are you ill?” said Temple.

“I am not,” said Carlton, pointing to a seat.

“I knew there must be some cause for your being up at this late hour, I thought it could be nothing less than sickness.”

“It is something more than sickness.”

“Is it any thing in regard to which I can be of any service to you? I am entirely at your command.”

“Thank you—you can do nothing for me. I have received a letter from home.”

“It contains bad news.”


“Is your father ill?”

“My father is well; but I am informed that another—friend has a mortal disease.”

“Another friend! a lady?”

Carlton bowed his head in reply.

Temple was silent. He knew that Carlton had no relative in his native place except his father. He inferred at once the nature of his connection with the invalid whose situation caused such deep solicitude. He felt a little hurt at the reserve with which he had been treated.

“Perhaps,” said Carlton, rightly divining what was passing in the mind of his friend, “I should have informed you of my acquaintance with Miss Warren. I have tried to do so more than once. My silence has not resulted from a want of confidence, or from a desire of concealing my engagement.”

“I think,” said Temple, “I can understand and appreciate the reason. Does Miss Warren live in your native place?”

“Yes; her parents removed there just two years ago. I became acquainted with her in the course of the first vacation after I entered college. We have been engaged nearly a year. She has recently been traveling for several months in hope of benefiting her health. My father incidentally mentions that her lungs are diseased beyond hope of recovery.”

“What is her age?”

“She was eighteen yesterday. She has seen only eighteen summers, and yet she must go down to the grave.”

“May we not hope that the fears of her friends have led them to overrate her danger?”

“The error always lies in the other direction.”

“Is it your purpose to go home?”

“I have written to my father for permission to do so,” pointing to a letter which lay on the table. “It is useless for me to stay here. When she is gone, I shall have no motive to study. I have desired distinction for her sake. I have lived for her alone.”

Temple strove to think of some topic of consolation which he could appropriately present. He knew his friend too well to suggest any thing which did not fully meet his case. He was constrained to leave him to his own reflections. Assuring him of his sympathy, and exhorting him to seek repose, he withdrew to his own apartment.

Carlton remained in his seat until his lamp was paled by the morning light. He then vainly sought an hour of repose; then rose, and having obtained leave of absence, seated himself in the morning stage-coach, and was borne over the hills and plains toward his native village.

The forests were putting on the scarlet and gold of autumn; but he saw not their beauty. He was like the shipwrecked mariner whose eye is fixed upon the bark which is fast receding in the distance. He was well nigh insensible to every thing around him.

His father was surprised and alarmed as the coach drew up at the door, and his son alighted. The pale and anxious countenance of the son had no tendency to dispel the fears which his sudden appearance had occasioned. To the hurried inquiries made respecting his health, he gave satisfactory replies, and then added:

“I came home solely on account of Miss Warren. Have you heard from her to-day?”

“She is not quite so well to-day,” said the father, in a tone of sympathy which went to the heart of his son. He comprehended at once the state of the case. Sympathy for the evident suffering of his son, prevented him from making even the mental inquiry, whether that son had not failed in duty to him, by not seeking his approbation in a matter so momentous in its influence.

It was not from want of respect or regard for his parent, that Willard had not made known to him the state of his affections. In all ordinary matters, the wishes of his parent were a law to him; concealment was foreign to his nature. But when those dreams, and longings, and aspirations which the young heart is scarcely willing to confess even to itself, began to 130 cluster around a living object; when, ere he was aware of it, all the wealth of his ardent soul was bestowed upon Eliza Warren, he felt an almost invincible repugnance to speak of it to any one but her.

After attempting to partake of some refreshment, he directed his footsteps toward the chamber of sickness, and to him of sorrow. His father kindly offered to attend him, but he begged permission to go alone.

A chill autumnal wind swept through the branches of the shade-trees, which were rapidly losing their foliage in consequence of the early frosts. The hues of evening were falling upon the landscape, and it seemed to him that it would never more be illumined by the morning sun.

As he reached the door of Miss Warren’s dwelling, he met the physician, who advised that she should not see him, or be apprised of his arrival until morning. Willard turned and made his way slowly homeward. His father, not expecting his speedy return, had gone out. The house was desolate—his mother had died when Willard was an infant.

He went to his chamber. Exhausted nature claimed repose. He slept till the light of morning began to struggle for entrance through the window, thickly shaded by the woodbine, which had not yet felt the influence of the frost.

At an early hour he presented himself at the door of the invalid. She was dressed in a robe befitting the sick-chamber. She attempted to rise as he entered, but her strength was not equal to the effort, and she sunk back in her chair. The crimson attendant upon the attempt was succeeded by a deadly paleness, which, however, did not drive the sweet smile from her lips. He stood and gazed upon her, as if upon a statue of surpassing loveliness, or a vision from another world. It was not till her hand was extended to invite him to approach her, and the tears began to fill her eyes, that the spell was broken, and he advanced to press her thin hand to his aching heart. He sat down by her side without speaking.

“I am glad to see you,” said she, almost in a whisper, which to his ear had a sepulchral hollowness. “When did you hear of my return?”

“Have you a cough?” said he, not heeding her question.

Before she could answer, a paroxysm of coughing, which she strove in vain to repress, shook her delicate frame in a manner which caused him to feel from that moment that there was no hope. He rose and paced the room in agony.

“Sit down,” said she, as soon as she had recovered strength to speak. “I shall use no ceremony with you now—sit down here,” and she drew the chair he had occupied closer to her own. “I have heretofore I felt—shall I own it?” and here a smile, such as first won his heart, lighted up her features—“a little afraid of you. I do not feel so now.”

“You do not expect to get well,” said he, as he sat down and took her hand in his.

“I do not,” was her reply, but her countenance underwent not the slightest change. A convulsive burst of grief on his part caused her to weep in sympathy.

“Do not,” said she, “make me weep. Dry your tears and let us talk together.” He endeavored to obey her request.

“Have you suffered much since I saw you?”

“Not much physical pain.” She did not say how much she had suffered when the darkness first fell upon all her prospects and hopes of life. She did not tell him how much she had suffered in view of the anguish which her early death would give to her friends, and most of all to him.

“How can it be,” said he, as though speaking to himself.

“It can, and must be,” said she, with entire composure, “and there is one thought connected with this dispensation, which does more than all other things relating to earth, to reconcile me to it.”

“Nothing can reconcile me to it”—said he, in a manner indicating disapprobation of the expression she had used.

“You surely would not have me like the imprisoned bird which wounds itself against the bars of its prison?”

“Oh no, I was selfish in the remark. I was thinking only of myself.”

“No, Willard, you shall not do yourself injustice, you were thinking of me. But the thought I alluded to is this—all your hopes have had reference to this world. They have not reached beyond the horizon of time. You have loved me as I do not deserve to be loved. I know and appreciate the depth of your love. The loss of your idol may cause you to take off your thoughts from the earth, and fix them on an enduring portion. If my death could be the means of your spiritual life, I think, solemn and awful as is the change which it brings, I could willingly meet it. And will it not have that effect? When I am gone will you not seek a better portion—even an heavenly?”

“When you are gone life will be utterly valueless to me.”

“Do not say so. You cannot say so and be blameless. If I now speak with calmness respecting our situation, you will not ascribe it to indifference to life, and the objects it set before me. You are not less dear to me than I am to you. Nothing has kept my heart from breaking in view of the blighting of all my earthly prospects, but a firm conviction that all events are ordered by Infinite Wisdom—that I am in the hands of a Being whose tenderness far surpasses that of my earthly parents, and whose power will cause all things to work together for my everlasting good. This conviction, and the hope that you will be induced to seek a better portion, enable me to go calmly forward by easy, but somewhat rapid stages, toward the grave. I have ever been very anxious on your account. Even in my happiest moments I have often trembled lest I should be the means of your continuing to rest contented with this world.”

The entrance of the physician prevented further conversation. He found her pulse accelerated, and advised that she should seek repose.



Young Carlton had not enjoyed the advantages of early instruction in religious truth. His pious mother died while he was in his infancy. His father took the utmost pains with the intellectual, social, and emotive education of his son. The subject of personal religion was never mentioned by him. He was not a disbeliever in Christianity; but he gave little heed to its peculiar claims. He was much in public life, and a reputation for high and honorable principle was all the religion to which he aspired. It is not strange therefore that Willard was ignorant of those consoling truths which formed the support of Eliza in her dark hour of trial.

In his view, she was a perfect being. He questioned the justice of the decree which was about to consign her to an early grave. He questioned the right of the Great Disposer to take from him his portion and destroy his hope. His life had been marked by strict integrity. He had no sympathy with the sensual. His aims had been purer and higher than those of the great majority of men. Why should the scathing bolt fall upon him, while the mercenary and abandoned passed on and realized their ends? Thoughts like these passed through the mind of Carlton, and as he walked to and fro in his chamber after the interview above described, they had no tendency to calm his agitation. The tempest in his bosom at length overpowered him. His father found him in a sleep bordering upon insensibility.

A day of illness intervened. On the next morning he again visited Eliza. There was the game voice and smile—perhaps the one was a little fainter—the other, if possible, a little sweeter than at the previous interview. Eliza entered upon a series of cheerful inquiries respecting his studies, his friends, and his purposes: she failed to chase away the deep expression of sorrow that rested upon his brow.

“It is useless,” said he, comprehending her purpose, “let us speak of what concerns us more, or let us enjoy each other’s society in silence. When with you I can even now speak of enjoyment.”

“I hope you will speak of it and feel it when I am gone; but I know that you cannot unless your affections are set in right tune by the hand of God. You are different from all other men. In my young dreams I used to fancy one whose whole life should consist in the exercise of affection. I never expected to find such a being. I have found one. Those affections will be to you ministers of sorrow, unless they are fixed upon something more enduring than an earthly object.”

“I can now think of nothing but you. If I am to have you but for a short time longer, do not attempt to turn my thoughts to other things. If I survive you, I will do all you wish.”

“I shall insist on the fulfillment of that promise.”

“Can you tell me,” said Willard, after a brief interval of silence, “why the heartless and cruel are suffered to remain, while the pure and gentle are taken away?”

“I cannot. I cannot tell why the summer flower was not made to endure as long as the mountain rock. We can only refer it to the wisdom and the will of God. But I begin to feel too much fatigued to converse longer. Will you read to me?”

“From what book?”

“From this, if you have no objection”—handing him a small copy of the New Testament, which she drew from her bosom. He took it and pressed it to his lips. He then read chapter after chapter, as she named them to him. Occasionally he would steal a glance at her countenance as she shaded her closed eyelids with her hand—beautiful as a statue, yet revealing the priceless soul in every vein.

“I wish you could pray with me,” she whispered, as he closed the volume and rose to depart.

“I cannot,” was the reply. This answer did not drive away the smile that was upon her lips—it was transferred to his, as they met.

“How long before you return to college?”

“I shall never leave you again.”

He retired. His last expression caused a flowing of tears more copious and exhausting than had been shed during the whole period of her decline.

Day after day Carlton took his station in the chamber of the consumptive, and watched her rapidly decaying strength. He spent much time in reading to her, occasionally from their favorite poets, but generally from the sacred volume. He thus became familiar with its truths, and no longer wondered at the calm confidence with which his beloved could look forward to lying down in the dark and narrow house.

At length she became too weak to rise from her bed, except for a few moments—usually at the close of the day. One evening she was sitting supported by her lover. Lights had not yet been brought into the apartment. The beams of a full October moon streamed through the casement, and painted its outlines in silver upon the floor. They sat and gazed in silence upon its soft brightness. For a few moments she leaned upon him more heavily, as if in sleep; then partially raising herself, she said:

“I saw many bright beings all clothed in that silver light, and they promised me that they would take care of you, and bring you to me.”

“Where were you?” said he, a chill creeping over him as if the inhabitants of the spirit world were around him.

She did not seem to hear his question, but continued—“Oh, it was beautiful—not an imperfect flower on all that plain—and such delicious gales—and such a firmament—and they looked upon me as the eyes of beloved friends, and I knew that they would watch over you for good.”

“Where was this?” said Willard, almost with terror. Still she heeded him not.

“The stream was as smooth as glass, and the moonbeams covered it with silver—it was wide, wide, and I could not see you. I looked in the far distance and saw a boat swiftly gliding toward me, and I knew you were in it, and were safe.”

“You are dreaming, dearest.”

She leaned more heavily upon him, and slept. He feared she was passing away. He tried to still his 132 heart while he listened. He heard her gentle breathing. He laid his hand upon her heart. It still kept up its workings. He laid her as gently as one would lay an infant upon her bed, and summoned her attendants. She continued to sleep. The physician assured him that death, though near, was not yet at the door.

The next morning revealed a marked change in the condition of the invalid. At first, she did not seem to recognize Carlton. The cloud, however, soon passed from her mind, and she gave him her usual smile and welcome.

“I shall never rise from my bed again,” said she; “do not leave me except when I sleep. My mind begins at times to give way. Remember your promise to prepare to meet me in the better land.”

“I will,” said he, nerving himself to composure for her sake. He then read the Scriptures to her, and, unasked, kneeled and offered a prayer in her behalf.

Ere long the aged pastor of the village church entered the chamber. He had been absent some time on a visit of mercy to a prodigal son of one of his parishioners. He silently pressed the hand of Carlton, and passing to the bedside, impressed a kiss upon the forehead of Eliza. His experienced eye told him that the silver thread of life was well nigh broken.

“You are on the verge of Jordan,” said he.

“Yes,” was the calm reply.

“Its waves are not rough?”

“Calm and peaceful.”

“You have no fears of death?”


“Thanks be to God who giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. You can say Thy will be done?”

Looking for a moment with unutterable tenderness upon Carlton, she closed her eyes and said, in a low but thrilling tone, “Thy will be done.

Her parents were called in. After uttering, from the depths of his experience, a few words of consolation, the pastor kneeled down and offered a prayer, first for the dying girl, then for him who watched over her, and then for her parents and friends. During the prayer Carlton held her hand in his, and felt its feeble pressure as the petitions had reference to him.

She sunk into a brief slumber almost as soon as the prayer was ended. Perfect silence was preserved, that she might not be disturbed. Carlton still retained her hand. The mother was about to make a whispered inquiry of the pastor, when the sleeper awoke.

“Did you hear that music?” said she.

“No, dearest.”

“It was the sweetest I ever heard. It must have come from the golden harps. Hark! hear it again.”

She closed her eyes. Carlton felt her hand relax its feeble grasp. He looked toward the pastor who came to the bedside.

“She is with her God,” said the old man, bending down and imprinting a kiss upon the cheek which felt not the warm tear that fell upon it, “and you my friends”—turning to the parents—“can say, ‘the Lord gave, and the Lord hath taken away, blessed be the name of the Lord.’”



Carlton remained by the bedside of the departed one till the attendants came to prepare the body for the grave. He then repaired with apparent calmness to his chamber, and remained there till summoned to attend the funeral. He took his seat in the church with the afflicted parents, and with them followed the coffin to the grave-yard; but no tear fell from his eye, nor, in view of the multitude, at least, did his countenance wear the expression of deep sorrow. Some thought he was wonderfully supported, and others doubted the strength of his affection for the departed one.

When the last sod had been laid upon the grave, he returned home, and seated himself by his father’s side.

“You will hardly be disposed to return to college this term, my son,” said the sympathizing father. “Consult your own inclinations in relation to the matter.”

“I shall return to-morrow,” was the unexpected reply. The father made no objection. He looked upon exertion as the great antidote of sorrow.

Early the next morning Willard arose, and having visited the grave-yard, and laid his head upon the sere turf of the new made grave, he set out on his return to college.

The evening found him at his room, surrounded by his friends, who came to express their sympathy for his bereavement, or their joy at his return. At an early hour he intimated his desire to be left alone. His well-known habit of retiring early, and the painful scene through which he had passed, formed, in the judgment of his friends, an ample apology for any want of courtesy implied in the intimation.

If there were any who thought that his affliction would weaken his devotion to intellectual pursuits, they were disappointed. His friends soon found that their society was not desired by him. Even Temple was constrained to feel that his presence was irksome to his friend. He seemed to desire to spend every moment in study. No light burned later than that which threw its rays upon the page before him. Modes of mental exertion, which he had formerly neglected, now received his earnest attention. In the halls of debate which he had seldom visited, he was now present on every occasion, and the energy with which he grasped every question awakened the highest admiration. In whatever he undertook there was an exhibition of power never before suspected even by his partial friends.

But the tense chord was at length broken. An impassioned burst of eloquence, which, in the judgment of those present, surpassed any thing they had heard from mortal lips, was followed by the ravings of lunacy.


Engraved expressly for Graham’s Magazine

Released from the control of the will, the mind revealed 133 the thought which had wrecked it. The name which had never passed his lips, since she who bore it ceased to be an inhabitant of earth, was now constantly repeated in tones which drew tears from eyes “unused to weep.”

He was removed by his friends to a lunatic asylum. After a long and dangerous illness, his brain began gradually to resume its proper functions. Several relapses, however, were experienced, and it was not till the spring and summer had passed, that his mind was fully restored.

He then returned, feeble and wasted, to his native village. With the consent of his father, he took up his abode with the parents of the lost one, and occupied the chamber in which she breathed her last. He passed the days sitting in her chair, looking out upon the landscape which she had loved to gaze upon, and in reading the New Testament which had lain in her bosom.

For a few days his strength seemed to increase; but there was little to justify the hope of his friends that he would be restored to health.

The aged pastor visited him, and kindly inquired respecting the state of his soul toward God.

“He is too strong for me. I cannot contend with Him,” replied the humbled sufferer.

“It is well for us to be convinced of that truth. It should lead us to acquaint ourselves with Him and be at peace.”

“I am devoting all my time to the attainment of that knowledge and peace.”

He that seeketh findeth! What a blessed assurance!”

After some further inquiries and appropriate counsels, the pastor withdrew, strongly hoping that that chamber would be the scene of spiritual birth, and as strongly fearing that it was again to bear witness to the power of death.

The apparent improvement in the health of Carlton was of short continuance. Once only was he able to walk to the grave-yard, and rest upon the turf which was now green upon the grave of Eliza.

“Tell my father,” said he, one day to the physician, who had not expressed his opinion upon the case, “that I shall not recover.”

“Have you no desire to live?” said the pastor, who was present.

“I think I can say with her, ‘Thy will be done.’ I see that life is altogether a different thing from what I supposed. If it were God’s will that I should continue here, I could perform as an hireling my day. But he excuses me, and I am content; though I have to regret that I have been of no benefit to my fellow men.”

His departure was much more sudden than was expected. On going to his chamber in the morning, his friends found that his spirit had fled. Her New Testament was between his hands, which were clasped upon his bosom. Apparently he had passed away as gently as did the former owner of that precious volume.

The autumn leaves were falling as the procession wound its way to the church-yard, and laid him to rest by the side of the grass-grown grave made just twelve months before.





The breeze is blowing fresh and strong;

  The rocking shallop chafes its chain,

And the billows are breaking in swells of song,

  That call me forth to the deep again:

A fiery charger paws the sand;

  A hound looks up with watching eye,

To scour the forest and valley land,

  And bay with the winds on the mountain high!


Let horns be heard in the gray ravine,

  And stormy songs from off the sea!

There’s blood in my heart, where tears had been,[1]

  And the blood of Youth is bold and free!

Leave, weary Soul, the hermit-lore

  Which kept this arm from the Life of Earth—

Lie down to rest on the quiet shore,

  While the dust, exulting, marches forth!


Thou hast wasted weak and pale, oh frame,

  That once wert ruddy as the dawn!

But the Earth, thy mother, is filled with flame,

  Whose sturdy warmth to thee has gone.

Thy locks shall toss on the mountain air—

  Thy limbs shall cool in the sparkling brine;

She will brace thy nerves with her forest-fare,

  And warm thy veins with generous wine!


Thy loins shall grow to a pard-like power,

  On the wild slopes of craggy hills;

Thou shalt bore thy breast to the arrowy shower,

  And catch in thine arms the icy rills:

Thy vigorous blood shall exult the same,

  When fevered cares in the spirit start,

As a pine, when the mountain is swathed in flame,

  Keeps green and fresh in his spicy heart!


Thou shalt go where the battle clarions blare,

  With the fierce, heroic rage of old;

The lust of the soldier thy brow shall wear—

  Thy heart shall swell like a banner’s fold.

In the shrieking hail thou shalt stand, my frame,

  Nor shrink from the path of thine arm’s employ,

When the thews are steel and the veins are flame,

  And Death to thee is a terrible joy!


Then, tighten the girth and loose the rein!

  Unleash the keen, impatient hound,

And deep in the seething foam again

  Let every quivering oar be drowned!

We will rock on the ocean’s solemn roll,

  Or follow the charging music’s mirth,

And the vine’s bright blood shall crown the bowl

  That brims for us with the Life of Earth!

Mon cœur, au lieu de sang, ne roule que des larmes.









In the garret room of a little two-story house in Philadelphia, sat two women, both of whom were foreigners. A child reclined in the lap of one of them, who was haggard and thin, yet beautiful. Her features were of the Grecian cast, with a most fascinating smile, and hair of a light auburn, that curled naturally and in profusion around her finely modeled head.

The appearance of the other woman was common-place, but she had a frank and kind expression that redeemed her bad looks. They were both French; the blonde had evidently a Parisian air, whilst the other as evidently came from one of the provinces.

“Ah, Madame Eboli!” said the latter, “now that I am going to join my husband in New Orleans, what is to become of you? You must not stay in this tiresome Philadelphia, where the women have no grace, no tournure; and the men never wear a moustache! not even an imperial! It is not astonishing that I should be able to bear it, having been condemned from my earliest youth to a country-life, where I was sometimes compelled to bring myself in contact with such rusticity! But you who come from our dear Paris, what a blow to your feelings to be placed among these savages! What a horror!”

“My dear friend,” returned Madame Eboli, “the world has of late altered in my eyes. The outward forms of men had once an effect on me; now, I see little beauty in even the finest features where there is no expression of sympathy for the unfortunate. As to remaining any longer in this city it is impossible. My funds had been exhausted two days previous to your sending me that last piece of sewing. I cannot get sufficient employment by my needle to support myself and Eleonore, and if I could I should fear the consequences. Bending over my work from early morning till late at night, makes me very ill. I have now a constant pain in my side. It is but nine months since I crossed the sea, when my poor husband died, and I wish to be near the sea, for then I do not seem so far away from him whose grave it is—”

“You are a good musician, can you not teach the piano or the guitar?”

“Ah, Madame Persaune! I have tried that, but no one would take lessons of a stranger. My garb was an evidence of my poverty, and in their eyes of my inefficiency; my face had the sufferings I have endured written upon it.”

“It is true that the ground is occupied by those of high reputation and long standing, and I see no other means by which women can earn a livelihood in this detestable country. Now in France you might go into one of the shops kept by women, or make pastry in a confectionery. But in this country men monopolize all the labor, with the exception of sewing and taking care of the children. However, I must go now and pack my trunks. God be with you and dear little Eleonore! You must accept this from me. God bless you!”

The good woman hurried away before Madame Eboli could speak. Her friend had left her a well-filled purse. “There is money enough,” thought she, “to take me to New York. In New York I shall find countrymen, and it may be friends. If I die, they will then take care of Eleonore.”

“Dear mother, kiss me!” said the little three-year-old Eleonore.

“Yes, my child, and we will leave this place, and I will take my angel to New York, where I may find some old friends. My aunt thought of going there with my boy cousins. Were I only to see her dear face once more! She always loved me, and when I married poor Gustave and my father and mother cast me from them, she addressed me with words of kindness. Dear aunt!—and my sweet sister too. Alas! I shall never see her more. Dear sister Eugenie! so young and so beautiful. But come, Eleonore, bring thy doll; we will go to New York this very day.”

The poor woman was too ill, however, to accomplish this, so it was put off till the following day. A good dinner gave her renewed strength, it being the first she had eaten for many weeks.

They were several days on the journey, and late on the afternoon of the day of their arrival, Madame Eboli, with her child in her arms, stopped at the door of a small house in Seventeenth street. By dint of gestures and broken English, the Irish, who were its inhabitants, were induced to relinquish a room to her. She had wandered the city through, until weary and way-worn, her feet refused her further support.

She sank on a bed exhausted with fatigue, anxiety, and want of food. Her child she had fed with cakes, and the little creature had fallen asleep, wearied by the excitement of the day.

Many and bitter were poor Madame Eboli’s reflections. She cared little for herself, but she thought that her tender and beautiful Eleonore was without a home and without friends. Not a countryman had she seen that whole day, and she had been followed by the jeers of the rude and ignorant German and Irish who form our suburbs, and who felt no pity for the poor stranger who could not make herself understood.



Maman veut du feu!” said a little girl, as she pushed open the door of an Irish shanty, and stood with a shovel in her hand.

“Was there ever the like!” said Bridget, resting her fists on her hips. “Now this be’s the third blessed day that the child has been here for coals and said that same thing!”

The child went quietly to the hearth, took some coals on her shovel, and departed.

“I’se been thinking it isn’t our language she’s a speaking, though she’s such a bit of a thing one couldn’t tell rightly what she’d be afther? I’ll follow her, belike she’s in mischief, though it isn’t in my heart to think ill of such a purty little cratur!”

So away ran Bridget, down one pair of stairs and up another, following the child, who pushed open a door with her shovel; and there on the naked bed she saw Madame Eboli, with no covering but a shawl. Madame Eboli spoke, but so faintly that Bridget could not understand her; she then laid Bridget’s hand on her forehead, when the Irish woman instantly perceived that she was dying with fever.

Bridget flew to a poor friend of hers, whom she knew was attended by an eminent French physician of the city. He had been kind, she thought, and done much for my sick friend, why should he not do the same for this woman, who was also in distress? Fortunately he was at the bedside of his patient when Bridget arrived.

“Och, sir! an there’s a poor woman in Seventeenth street, what’s a terrible faver on her, and no clothes to her bed, and nothing to ate; maybe yees’d go and see her a bit! She’s a nice looking woman, and got as purty a child as ever I see.”

“I will come to her directly,” said Doctor Breton.

“I think she’s a foreigner, maybe yees could talk with her, being one yoursel; she’s so wake, poor thing! there’s no telling what she’d be saying.”

It was but a short ten minutes after Bridget’s summons when the doctor opened the door of Madame Eboli’s room. The little girl was crying, and making vain efforts to turn her mother toward her. As the child spoke in French, he addressed the mother in that language, giving her at the same time, some reviving medicine. After taking it, she was able to give him an account of herself, and also to tell him of her anxiety concerning Eleonore.

The doctor left the house, promising to return in an hour or two. Proceeding to the hospital, he procured an entrance for her, and by the afternoon she had been carried there, placed on a nice clean bed, and her wants well attended to—thanks to the generous kindness of a Christian heart! He then exerted himself in behalf of the little one. He related the strange history of the mother to all his French patients, and raised a subscription to pay for the child’s board after her mother’s death, which was evidently near.

On his way to the hospital one morning, he over-took one Mr. Carron, and told him Madame Eboli’s sad story, asking his aid. They had by that time reached the door of the hospital, and Mr. Carron accepted Doctor Breton’s invitation to enter and see the little Eleonore.

Mr. Carron was a very impulsive man. He never hesitated, never reflected, (never asked his wife’s opinion, as every reasonable man should,) but went into raptures over little Eleonore’s beauty, and offered on the spot to adopt the child as his own—an offer that was thankfully accepted by the poor mother.

It was but a week after this, that the doctor found Madame Eboli much worse. On leaving her he requested to be called should any change take place in her symptoms.



. . . . . It was ten o’clock. The night-lamp of the infirmary showed with a horrible distinctness the haggard inmates who were tossing and groaning on their pallets. The doctor sat beside the bed of Madame Eboli. They were discoursing concerning Eleonore.

“I conjure you,” said the doctor, “tell me the name of your family. It is necessary to the future welfare of your child!”

“My parents cast me from them. They loved me not—how should they love my child? No! it is better that she should eat the bread of strangers, and receive good and evil from their hands, than suffer only insult and degradation from her mother’s parents.”

“Then at least tell me your husband’s name, and where his relations are to be found?”

“Alas! Gustave Eboli was an orphan, and poor; therefore my father said I should not love him. . . . But I feel very faint—you said I should see my child soon?”

At this very moment the sound of advancing steps was heard, and Monsieur Carron entered with Eleonore in his arms. He placed her on the bed with Madame Eboli. The little creature nestled close, kissing and embracing her mother in a transport of delight; soon, however, the strange sounds, the shadowy figures that flitted past with noiseless footsteps, startled and awed the child. And then her mother looked so sadly on her, that she wept, scarce knowing why, but in a subdued tone, as though some grief swelled her little heart too deeply to be given utterance.

“Poor child!” sighed the mother, “this is thy first real sorrow. . . . But I have a request yet to make. In my basket you will find a miniature of my sister, set in a pearl necklace; and a ring, my dear aunt’s gift. Should she ever come to this country, which she has spoken of doing, her first inquiries would be concerning me. The name of Eleonore Eboli and these jewels, would be sufficient evidence. . . . . There are two letters also, which I would have saved for Eleonore; they are her father’s. . . . . . . My sister and my aunt are the only persons of my family who knew that my destination was America.”

Here she paused, as if exhausted. Little Eleonore had ceased crying, and was gazing earnestly at her mother.

136 “Fear not for your child,” said Mr. Carron, “I will take care of her. You may trust in me.”

Madame Eboli continued—“And now, my Eleonore, listen—you must be good, and stay with this gentleman, who will love you like papa.”

“It is not papa? Where is papa?” and the little lips quivered.

“Where I shall soon see him, dear Eleonore! I am going to leave you. Never forget your poor mother.” She then kissed the child several times. “There is some of papa’s hair in the locket around my neck.” Then addressing the gentlemen, she added: “Take it when I am gone—not till then.”

Madame Eboli then sank into a stupor, in which she lay for half an hour; then opening her eyes, she only said:

“Gustave says come! . . . . My child we will watch over thee. . . . . Protect her, she is so young—so innocent. I come, Gustave—I come!”

And the angel of death passed by and received her last breath. Sixteen summers had found her a child, eighteen a woman, and at twenty she was laid where the aged sleep.

“Be her sleep calm and deep,

Like theirs who fell, not ours who weep.”[2]

That same night, in the adjoining room of the hospital, died the son of Marmontel, from the effects of exposure and hunger. He had been traveling over North America, when from some cause his remittances from France were discontinued. He found himself at Albany utterly without resources. Leaving his trunk there, he walked to New York in hopes of finding the money, or of borrowing some from the French consul. His journey was a lone and toilsome one, and the exposure to the cold induced the return of a fever from which he had but lately recovered at the West. The French consul treated him harshly, disbelieved his story, and sent him to the hospital. The day after his death a large sum directed to him, was received through a packet-ship, which had been detained at sea by a succession of disasters, two months longer than her usual time.



Eleonore became at once, by the death of her mother, an inmate of the Carron family. Mr. Carron petted the child for a short time, and then she was given over to the servants, Madame Carron having something else to do, as she said, beside taking care of orphans.

Eleonore vegetated—I cannot use any other word—in the servants’ rooms for six whole years. At the end of that time, fortunately for my heroine, Mr. Carron’s affairs obliged him to leave this country suddenly. It was rumored that he ran away from his creditors, but I know nothing of the matter. The consequence to Eleonore was, that she was left with Mr. Carron’s brother Jerome.

This brother Jerome had a very sensible wife, who was quite shocked at finding that the poor orphan had not been instructed even in the common rudiments of knowledge. Her health was delicate, and as she could not undertake the charge of Eleonore’s education, she placed her forthwith at Mr. Delombre’s boarding-school, one of the best in the city of New York.

I remember perfectly well the first time that I saw her. She was led by Madame Delombre into the school-room, and was there introduced to numbers of children of every size, from her own up to the grown woman. I, who write this memoir, was there among the rest. It was intermission, and we were all amusing ourselves in the way we liked best. A desk next to mine was empty, and Eleonore was placed there. She looked sad and frightened, and was withal so pretty, that I felt attracted to her. I essayed to make acquaintance by offering a part of my luncheon—she declined. I then continued, the ice being broken.

“Do you like going to school?”

“I do not know. I never went.”

I suppose my eyes expressed astonishment, for she blushed. “I wonder if we shall be in the same class? How old are you?”

“I am twelve years old,” answered Eleonore.

“Oh dear! I am between ten and eleven years old. I am afraid they will put you in the class above me!”

“What will be my studies?” said the young girl, timidly.

I gave her a catalogue of my own lessons, which made her look very blank, and I then proceeded to tell her who the scholars were, and which I liked the best; and I also gave her some information respecting the rules and regulations of the school.

“It is one o’clock,” said the teacher. “The intermission is over!”

We hurried to our desks. I went to my lessons, and though Eleonore sat beside me I could speak no more to her that afternoon. I saw, nevertheless, that there would be no danger of her getting in the class above me for a long time to come.



Two years and a half have passed since I introduced Eleonore as my companion at the desk. She was now between fifteen and sixteen. A tall and finely formed girl for her age, her personal appearance was so pleasing that she attracted universal attention wherever she appeared. Her hair still curled in the same long golden locks; she had the straight Grecian nose, and the deep, large blue eyes of her mother, and a noble forehead. Monsieur Delombre had more than fulfilled his promise. She was his best scholar.

Our intimacy had continued increasing, and we had become inseparable. Every other Saturday had been spent with her uncle and aunt; but as I was something of a favorite with Mr. Delombre, I was allowed to take her with me on the intervening Saturdays to my mother’s house.

Oh, how happy we were then! She was so gay and so cheerful, except when we talked of France, for papa Carron had intimated in his letters to his brother, that the time was approaching when Eleonore must leave America, she being now of an age in which her services would be required by the family.

“She loved uncle and aunt Carron,” she said, “and she dreaded papa and mamma Carron. She had kind friends in Mr. and Mrs. Delombre, and also in my mother’s family. It was hard to be obliged to leave them, and live with those who cared not for 137 her. But she would try to gain their good-will by all the means in her power.”

Thus she talked as we were seated, one warm summer’s afternoon, side by side on the green sward before my mother’s cottage.

As the evening shadows fell, she grew more communicative, and gave me the little history which I have here related. Since then it has been attested to me by those who saw her mother.

. . . . . . . . The next winter passed by, and when the spring came my mother took her children to the country again for the summer. I bade Eleonore a gay adieu, under the promise of a long visit from her during the vacation. Alas! instead of a visit, I only received a brief but affectionate note, stating that in two days the “Silvie de Grace” was to take her as a passenger, and she should leave forever the shores of America.

Men and women usually laugh at the friendships of school-girls. It is true they are often transitory and of a frivolous character, but they are often, too, of a lasting nature, and founded on real esteem. I felt and appreciated the worth of Eleonore, and for years regretted her loss. Marriage, and a long residence abroad again brought me in contact with her, but under very different circumstances.


Paris, November 1st, 18—.

My dear Winifred,—Now that I am safely housed in Paris, I shall give you a short account of my journey. We were but four weeks on the ocean, and had no storms to boast of (at least the captain maintained this,) though we were all much frightened one windy night, when a gale arose that shattered our sails, and tossed us about in a most unceremonious manner.

“I was very sick, and as I lay in my berth I could feel each wave as it upheaved the ship, and when she pitched, headlong down its side, I wondered sometimes if we should ever see the light again. But I felt no fear, I was too sad for that. I thought of the happy home I had left behind, and its probable contrast with that of Papa and Mamma Carron’s establishment, I remembered that it was my mother’s birth-place, that I should visit Paris. Paris was my goal! There every object would acquire new interest in my eyes, each house would seem the one in which my mother passed her girlhood, each beautiful girl my mother’s darling sister, each man her brother, the aged her parents; ALL AGES would have the charm of mystery to attract me, and my fancy would quickly vision forth the family to which I was related! But I will talk no more of this.

“The captain of our ship conducted me to Paris. He was very kind, and to gratify me, took the route up the Seine from Havre to Rouen in the day-boat, that I might see picturesque Normandy, with its lovely valleys, its cottages, with their thatched roofs and gables; the varied costumes of its peasantry, and its giant horses, which move with the power and majesty of elephants.

“I was very inquisitive, and the captain often found a difficulty in ascertaining the names of the villages and the castles situated on the banks of the river, to reply to my queries. A young gentleman seeing our trouble, obligingly offered his guide-book, which contained all the information we needed. He also gave us many anecdotes concerning the nobility who lived in the chateaux. In the course of conversation he mentioned that his father lived but fifteen miles from Rouen, and that he was now on the way to visit him. His own name is Lazun.

“When he heard that I came from America, he immediately offered to be our guide in visiting the cathedral, and other curiosities of Rouen, an invitation which we gladly accepted.

“On separating for the night, our traveling companion said that we might expect him punctually at half-past ten the next morning to escort us. But when the hour arrived Mr. Lazun did not appear. The little French gilt clock on the mantel-piece struck eleven o’clock, then twelve, then one. The captain was fairly angry, and I must confess I was not at all pleased, for I had imagined he would come earlier than the hour. I am afraid I have but little penetration.

“We sallied out alone, but the day was hot, and the city dirty. We could not find the cathedral, and the captain would ask for no directions; so we returned to the hotel, where we had but just time to eat our dinner before the Diligence arrived to take us away to Paris. You see what civility we meet with!

“I cannot say that I am happy. Yet I do not complain, for I am well fed and well clothed, but my heart and mind are oppressed by my dependent situation, which is hinted at on every occasion. I do my best to assist the family, but they are never satisfied with my efforts. Little Adele is at a boarding-school, so that I have no one to love; but say nothing of all this to any one. I would not have others know that I am unhappily placed.

“After my first communion, which is to take place next year, I shall endeavor to gain my own living, though I do not know yet in what way.

. . . . . “Write to me soon dear Winifred, for I am very lonely, and believe me, I remain always your sincerely attached friend,

Eleonore Eboli Carron.”



Two young men were walking in the Rue de Rivoli one fine morning.

“There is a grand figure before us with a majestic walk,” said one of them. “Walk faster. I would see her face.”

“What! you run after a woman because she walks well? I thought you only admired intellect. Beauty never possesses it, don’t you know that yet, Victor Lazun?”

“No; you don’t know any thing about the matter. Faith! ’tis the lady I met on board the steamboat between Rouen and Havre! I could not then ascertain her name, nor have I caught sight of her since till now. You know my father’s illness compelled 138 me to leave Rouen at a minute’s notice, and you know I only arrived in time to bid him farewell. But I will not now lose sight of her. I will know where she lives.”

“You can easily do that!”

Monsieur Lazun saluted the lady; gave the reasons for his singular behavior at Rouen, which were kindly received, and taking leave, asked permission to call upon her, which she granted.

On returning from her walk she informed Madame Carron of having met Mr. Lazun, and of her giving him her address. A storm of reproaches followed this confession of her indiscretion, so that Eleonore concluded that if she made any friends it would not be through the aid of Madame Carron. In future she should not mention those she met.

But a few days elapsed before Eleonore met Mr. Lazun again. She gave him to understand, very delicately, that her guardian did not like to receive strangers. Which he answered, by saying that he should wait upon Mr. Carron at the earliest opportunity and show him some letters of recommendation, and also bring a friend with him, who was one of the first bankers in Paris, slightly acquainted with Mr. Carron. He thought he could satisfy any one as to his character and social position.

Eleonore heard this with pleasure, for she felt interested in Mr. Lazun, and as she had so few opportunities of conversing with agreeable people, looked upon the young man as quite a god-send.

It was not long before Mr. Carron received a visit from the two gentlemen, and upon the banker’s sending up his name, they were immediately ushered into his study with great attention; but when the object of the visit was made known, “mine host” changed his tone, and rudeness took the place of courtesy. There was no mistaking his manner, and Mr. Lazun knew that his acquaintance was not desired, and that he must give up all thoughts of the fair Eleonore who had made so strong an impression on his fancy.

But fortunately, or unfortunately, my hero and heroine frequently walked in the same direction, (drawn probably by some mesmeric attraction)—by degrees they became strongly attached to each other, and finally, an engagement of marriage took place.

A hint from one of the servants, who had met the lovers in one of their walks, made madame send the young lady directly to the convent of St. Germain, for her communion. She was ordered never to think of marriage, (for Eleonore had immediately confessed her engagement,) she must make herself useful in the family to whom she owed every thing, and work she must and should for them all her life.

Eleonore made no reply to all this, but afterwards, in the solitude of her convent cell, she made this decision: “I will marry Victor Lazun—my debt of gratitude has been paid to my guardians. As a child, my only expense to them was clothing of the poorest quality. My food was not missed in the extravagant household which they kept. To their brother and sister I owe much, and also to Mr. and Mrs. Delombre. They taught me all that I know. Since my arrival in France I have embroidered all madame’s collars, I have done the marketing, overlooked all household affairs, made preserves, done up the muslins, beside mending, sewing, and any little odd job which madame did not like herself.

“This has gone on for two years, and I have done it willingly, but now I am old enough to choose my future course, and shall do so.”

This passage I have copied from a note which she sent to Victor Lazun on her departure for the convent. There, of course, he could not see her, but he well knew that his pretty cousin Victorine La Graviere was at the same convent, and with a little coaxing, he persuaded his aunt to take a note to Victorine, in which he begged his cousin to show Eleonore some kindness for his sake, though without mentioning his name or their relationship.

The acquaintance of the two girls soon ripened into friendship, and it was not long before young Lazun thought his aunt sufficiently interested in Eleonore through his own representations and Victorine’s eulogies, to confide his secret to her care. Yes, dear reader! it was a secret, and you would have laughed to see the dismay on the face of the gentle Countess La Graviere when she learned of his intended marriage.

“But you are not going to marry this poor orphan, are you, Victor? With your rank and favor at court it is quite absurd?”

“I certainly shall, my dear aunt. As to my rank she knows nothing of that, nor my fortune either; so, thank God! she loves me for myself alone.”

“Is this indeed so, Victor?”

“It is all settled. I am my own master, and will marry whom I please. I do wish you would ask her to visit you at your country-seat during the next month. You will be delighted with her. She is the very image of your sister-in-law the Marchioness Eugenie.”

“She must be very beautiful then. I will see her, Victor, and invite her for your sake. But do not be hasty about the marriage. Think it over coolly. Your relations will be mortified, and I fear that the king will be much displeased.”

“The king cares less for rank than most of his subjects. And as to my relations, I marry the girl, not they.”



We must now allow six weeks to have passed by, and we shall find Eleonore at the chateau La Graviere, dressing for a fête which is to celebrate Victorine’s birth-day. Victorine is assisting Eleonore.

“Only look at this pearl necklace of mine. It is beautiful, and you must wear it this evening,” said Victorine.

Eleonore returned—“I have also a pearl necklace, which I value highly. It contains a miniature of my aunt. Here it is.”

“What a resemblance to the marchioness. If I did not know that it was impossible, I should say that your aunt and mine were one and the same person. It is strange, now I perceive you have the 139 regular Grecian La Graviere nose. Papa will fall in love with you at once. He is always looking at my nose, and wondering there is not danger that it will not become one-sided. I believe if I were to fall from a carriage the first question he would ask, would be, ‘Have you hit your nose?’”

“Your father will soon be here, will he not?” asked Eleonore.

“Yes, if the Duke of Orleans do not detain him. There will be eight gentlemen beside from the court. But I hear carriages. The neighboring guests have began to assemble, and I must help mamma to receive them—come!”

The ball-room was brilliantly lighted, and Eleonore’s beauty was the theme of every tongue. Her dress was white satin, covered with white lace and looped with white roses. The only ornament she wore was the miniature necklace, clasped tightly around her throat.

The countess was delighted with the appearance of her young guest, and introduced her to all her particular friends. In about half an hour there was a rush in the hall; the folding-doors of the ante-chamber were thrown wide open, and the prince royal entered, leaning on the arm of Monsieur La Graviere, and followed by his suite.

Monsieur La Graviere, after saluting his wife and presenting her to the prince, turned away to pay his compliments to some of the ladies present, when his eye was suddenly caught by Eleonore’s face, as she stood within a few feet of him. “Good God! my sister!” he exclaimed, impetuously.

“She does indeed resemble Aunt Eugenie! We all observed it,” said Victorine.

“Introduce me, my child. What is her name?”

“Eleonore Carron.”

“Carron—it was not his name. It is impossible.”

The introduction was made, and the master of the castle was inquiring if she was a native of Paris, when he stopped short—started, and then said:

“Forgive me, mademoiselle; but is not that a miniature of my sister Eugenie in your necklace?”

Eleonore trembled, but she stood erect, and answered firmly. “It is a miniature of my aunt.”

“And what was her name?”

“You will excuse my not answering any further questions.”

“I hope you will forgive my rudeness, when you see its likeness to my sister,” continued the count. “Here she comes!”

Eleonore turned pale, for she felt that the hour was at hand that would reveal her name and kindred. Her self-command increased in proportion. Pride forbade any manifestation of emotion before those who spurned the mother who gave her birth; yet when she saw a face streaming with tears before her, that she knew belonged to her mother’s only and dear sister; when she received a warm embrace, and heard in a soft voice, these words—“I know it is Eleonore Eboli, my beloved niece!” The poor child sighed “Yes!” and then fainted.

She was quickly carried out, and though soon restored to consciousness, did not venture again into the saloon. She was in the arms of an aunt, a cousin sat beside her; they both gave thanks to God that she had been brought to them; they wept when she told them of her mother’s death. And the poor marchioness said—

“I will be your mother in future, dear child! you shall no longer be an orphan. I am rich, and all that can be done to contribute to your happiness will be freely bestowed.”

Here Eleonore summoned courage, and with down-cast eyes and faltering words, told her aunt that her destiny was decided, she should become the wife of a young architect of Paris. He was poor in purse, but rich in affection, and she begged her aunt to say nothing against their marriage, till at least, she had seen the youth.

“She is like her mother in heart as well as in form,” sighed the marchioness. “But come, Eleonore, I think we must go to bed; we have had happiness enough for one night, and you, Victorine, must return to the ball; his royal highness will miss those bright eyes!”

With many a kind embrace they then separated for the night.

About an hour before breakfast, Victorine and Eleonore were taking their morning promenade on a terrace that overlooked the Seine, and Eleonore was unburthening her heart to her cousin, when Victorine exclaimed—

“Here comes the prince!”

“Good God! he is arm in arm with Victor Lazun!”

“Yes, that is my cousin, but not yours.”

“Your cousin!!! with the prince too. Ah! what will happen next; I hardly know now what I am saying, my senses are bewildered, one strange scene succeeds another till I almost doubt my own identity!”

“I salute you, ladies,” said the prince. “My lord duke and I have been rifling your flower-beds. May I present you this bouquet?”

“My flowers will feel grateful for your highness’ attentions,” said Victorine.

“Forgive me, Eleonore,” said young Lazun, “you will not love me the less now that I am a duke and peer of France. I am still Victor Lazun, as you are Eleonore Eboli.”

I had recently arrived in Paris. A ball was given at the Tuilleries, and many Americans were there. We stood in rows through which the royal family passed, followed by several maids of honor and ladies of the bed-chamber.

I caught my breath as one passed near me. “Who is that?” said I to a friend, who was well acquainted at court.

“It is the Duchess of Lazun, the intimate friend of the Princess Marie of Orleans. She is a great favorite with all the royal family, and her husband also. But here she comes again.”

Our eyes met, we recognized each other—my readers may guess the rest.







(Continued from page 72.)

The costume of the Catholic church at the altar has always been prominent and unchangeable, and even the secular garb of its priests has undergone fewer mutations than that of any other class of the community. All, however, will be struck with the marked difference between the following portrait of a young abbé and the churchmen of to-day.

We have to do, generally, in this and the following articles merely with the fashionable dress of the day, and therefore might omit all that related to what the noblesse were pleased to call the bas peuple; we will, however, give a portrait of a famous French Intendant of that day, filling an office the English call a steward. Except that the coat is plainer, that there is no sword, and that the coiffure is less labored, it is almost identical with the first engraving given.


An examination of the above will show that one great difference between the costumes of that day and our own was the use of powder; a stupid fashion which nothing but the confusion of the French revolution could do away with, yet which was adhered to with the most wonderful tenacity. Another whim was the habit of wearing the sword, which may be said yet more positively to separate the eighteenth from the nineteenth century. This habit, which had its use in the days of the Ligne and the Fronde, lasted till the commencement of the present century. Etiquette absolutely required that all who presented themselves within the sacred precincts of Versailles should be thus decked, and it became ultimately a passport, so that the shopkeeper, dancing-master and coiffeur had only thus to deck themselves, and they might jostle in the stairway of the palace gentlemen as noble as the king. This, however, all disappeared amid the revolution, when the pike and musket usurped the place of the gilded rapier.

The materials of the fashionable coat of that day were Brussels’ camlet, velvet or silk. At this time we can form little idea of the variety of colors worn; black, green, blue, rose, yellow and violet all were seen. The waistcoat was not a gilet, but reached the hip, extending below which were breeches, which being worn like a sailor’s, without suspenders, had from time to time to be hitched up by the hands. In the cold winter of 1739 the English gaiters and over-coat were worn for the first time, and to this new fashion an old French nobleman attributed the decay of the monarchy.

The fashions of the present time date from the days of Louis XVI. and when we come to treat of his reign, we shall see the passing away and development of the old and new modes. Nor do they disappear alone, for classes go with them. Having been rejected as a livery unworthy of men, the beings who had glittered in them disappeared like shadows, either because they had really been annihilated, or had been regenerated under the new order of things. Among the classes which thus disappeared was the Morgues, the gilded type of French folly, not the creature, but the butt of the wit of Moliere; a compound of pride, insipidity and wit, of politeness and impudence, of gallantry and impertinence, of affectation and good manners. Not even comedy preserves them. Dandies are eternal—for such were the Muscadins, the Mervelleux and the Incroyables, but the Morgues are gone. With the Morgues disappeared their younger brothers, the abbés and mousquetaires, and with their estates the intendants.

[To be continued.







This noble songster, the pride of the American forest, is peculiar to the New World. So greatly superior are its powers of melody to those of any European bird, that long after the discovery of the western continent, reports of its existence were treated as a mere fable, akin to the other unnatural marvels with which an excited imagination peopled our vast forests. And this skepticism will appear the more excusable when we remember that few persons, who have never heard the mocking-bird, have any sufficient conception of his powers of imitation, the sweetness of his melody, or the wildness of his native tones. When these are in full display, the forest resounds with a succession of notes, as though from every warbler of the grove, so that the listener, instead of believing that he hears only one bird, seems to be surrounded with myriads. Nor is this power confined to imitations of song. With the strains of the Thrush and Warbler, chime in the wail of the Whippoor-will, the crowing of the cock, and the loud scream of the eagle. The mewing of cats, the whistling of man, and the grating sounds of brute matter, form variations to this singular chorus, blended and linked together in so artful a manner as to surpass immeasurably every performance of the kind in the whole range of animated creation. “With the dawn of morning,” says Nuttall, “while yet the sun lingers below the blushing horizon, our sublime songster in his native wilds, mounted on the topmost branch of a tall bush or tree in the forest, pours out his admirable song, which, amid the multitude of notes from all the warbling host, still rises pre-eminent, so that his solo is heard alone, and all the rest of the musical choir appear employed in mere accompaniments to this grand actor in the sublime opera of nature.” Nor is the power of the Mocking-bird confined to mere imitation. His native tones are sweet, bold and clear; these he blends with the borrowed music in such a manner as to render the whole a complete chorus of song. While singing he spreads his wings, elevates his head, and moves rapidly from one position to another. Some observers have even fancied a regularity in his motions, as though keeping time to his own music. Not unfrequently he darts high into the air with a scream which at once silences every warbler of the grove.

Writers on Ornithology have sometimes amused themselves by comparing the powers of the Mocking-bird with those of the Nightingale. Barrington, a distinguished British naturalist, who had heard the American bird, declares him to be equal to the Nightingale in every respect, but thinks the song spoiled by frequent mixture of disagreeable sounds. On this opinion Wilson has the following remarks:

“If the Mocking-bird be fully equal to the song of the Nightingale, and, as I can with confidence add, not only to that, but to the song of almost every 143 other bird, beside being capable of exactly imitating various other sounds and voices of animals, his vocal powers are unquestionably superior to those of the Nightingale, which possesses its own native notes alone. Further, if we consider, as is asserted by Mr. Barrington, that one reason of the Nightingale’s being more attended to than others is, that it sings in the night; and if we believe, with Shakspeare, that

The Nightingale, if she should sing by day,

When every goose is cackling, would be thought

No better a musician than a Wren,

what must we think of that bird who, in the glare of day, when a multitude of songsters are straining their throats in melody, overpowers all competition, and by the superiority of his voice, expression and action, not only attracts every ear, but frequently strikes dumb his mortified rivals, when the silence of night, as well as the bustle of the day, bear witness to his melody; and whenever in captivity, in a foreign country, he is declared, by the best judges in that country, to be fully equal to the song of their sweetest bird in its whole compass? The supposed degradation of his song by the introduction of extraneous sounds and unexpected imitations, is in fact one of the chief excellencies of this bird, as these changes give a perpetual novelty to the strain, keep attention constantly awake, and impress every hearer with a deeper interest in what is to follow. In short, if we believe in the truth of that mathematical axiom, that the whole is greater than a part, all that is excellent or delightful, amusing or striking, in the music of birds, must belong to that admirable songster, whose vocal powers are equal to the whole compass of their whole strains.”

Confinement does not seem to have much effect upon the Mocking-bird’s song. In the cage it is a most agreeable pet, seeming to exert itself to give pleasure. Even at night, when all else is hushed to rest, it pours forth its magical notes, which ring along the solitary haunts of man with strange cadence, and as echoes of a more beautiful sphere. Its chief pleasure consists in deceiving the animals of the household. “He whistles for the dog,” says the author quoted above, “Cæsar starts up, wags his tail, and runs to meet his master. He squeaks out like a hurt chicken, and the hen hurries about with hanging wings and bristled feathers, clucking to protect her injured brood. The barking of the dog, the mewing of the cat, the creaking of a passing wheelbarrow, follow with great truth and rapidity. He repeats the tune taught him by his master, fully and faithfully.” Those taken when wild are the best singers; when raised by hand they should be kept perfectly clean, and at first fed regularly every half hour, on milk thickened with Indian meal. This should occasionally be mingled with cherries, strawberries, cedar-berries, insects, especially spiders, and fine gravel. Meat, cut very fine, is also given. Attempts, partially successful, have been made to breed them in confinement.

The Mocking-bird is found in all our forests from the Great Lakes to Mexico. It was once abundant in the neighborhood of Philadelphia, but has been driven thence by the amateur sportsman. It delights, however, in a warm climate, and especially one like that of Carolina, low, and near the sea. From the middle of April to the middle of May embraces the time of building, the season varying with the climate and nature of the spring. The nest is mostly placed upon a solitary thorn or cedar-bush, often close to the habitation of man, whose society this bird seems to court. The eggs are four or five in number, blue, with large brown spots. The female rears two broods in a season, during which time she is closely guarded, fed and enlivened by the male. The courage of these birds in defending their young is astonishing. During the period of incubation, neither cat, dog, animal nor man can approach the nest without being attacked. Their great enemy is the black-snake. When the male perceives this wily foe, he darts rapidly upon it, and to avoid its bite, strikes rapidly about the head and eyes, until the enemy, blinded and baffled, hastens to retreat. But his little antagonist pursues, redoubling his efforts until the snake is killed. Then joining his mate, the victor pours forth his loudest strains, seemingly in celebration of his good fortune.

The Mocking-bird is nine and a half inches long, and thirteen broad. The upper parts of the head, neck and back are a brownish ash color. The wings and tail nearly black, tipped with white. The male is distinguished by having the whole nine primaries of the wings of a clear white, while but seven are of that color in the female, with whom also the color inclines to dun. The tail is cuneiform; the legs and feet strong and black; bill of the same color; the eye yellowish, inclining to golden. His plumage, like that of the nightingale, is sober and pleasing, and his figure neat, active and inspiriting.

A bird, called by Nuttall, the Mountain Mocking-bird, possesses considerable powers of imitation. It is found on the vast table-lands of Oregon and Mexico. It is smaller than its valuable relative, somewhat different in shape and color, and possesses much power and sweetness of tone. The eggs are emerald green. Little, however, is known of this bird.





Here, on the threshold of the year, we feel

  New thoughts. New plans perplex the mental view,

And fain would we endeavor thus to heal

  The Old Year’s disappointments in the New.


As ends the year, to us all time must end—

  As time’s knell soundeth, to our knell must toll—

Oh! may our lives so pass, that we may mend

  The BODY’S sorrows in the RISEN SOUL.






“You could not have made your application at a more apropos time, my good fellow,” said a pale, emaciated invalid, who was seated on an easy chair in his own chamber, addressing a fine, intelligent-looking young man near him; “I had exactly the sum you want paid to me very unexpectedly yesterday. I had the good fortune some years ago to assist a friend with a few hundred dollars, but though the money was serviceable at the time, he eventually became a bankrupt, and as I had only his note for the loan, I never expected to receive any thing from him. Yesterday, however, he came and put into my hand two bank notes of a thousand dollars each, which was the amount of my own money and the legal interest upon it. I am very happy to be able to accommodate you, though I am sorry at the same time to find you are under the necessity of borrowing.”

“It is a painful circumstance,” replied the other, “but happily it does not arise from any fault of my own.”

“I never imagined it did,” returned the master of the house, “and consequently had no hesitation in promising to assist you. But pray, may I ask what has occasioned so painful a necessity?”

“I came with the full intention of explaining it to you,” said the young man, whom we will here introduce to our readers by the name of Norman Horton. “Do not leave the room, Lucy, I beg,” he continued, addressing a lovely girl, who had hitherto sat sewing at a distant window, but who at this moment rose to quit the apartment. “I have nothing to say that I would not wish you to hear.”

“I am sure you have not,” said Mr. Woodford, “so sit still, Lucy dear.” Then turning, as his daughter resumed her seat and her work, to Horton, he added, “My lease of life is so nearly expired that I am afraid to let my nurse leave me even for a few minutes, lest my warning to quit should come when she is away from me. The spasms to which I have for some time been subject have of late increased so much in violence, that I believe my physicians have little hope of my surviving another. But I am interfering with your explanation, which I am anxious to hear; for, though so nearly done with this world myself, I still retain my interest in the welfare of those I esteem. So go on, Norman, and let me hear what you were going to say.”

“You are aware,” returned Horton, with an expression of countenance that proved the subject to be a painful one to him, “that my poor father frequently involved himself in difficulties. At one time he became so embarrassed that his farm was condemned by the court, and would have been sold by the sheriff, had not his friends, for my mother’s sake, made great efforts in his favor. It is unnecessary for me to trouble you with all the particulars; suffice it to say, that the person who had intended to sell took a mortgage on the place, for two thousand dollars, still retaining the right which the court had given, of making a sale at any moment that he chose. This mortgage and privilege he last year transferred to old Hinkley, and he, though his interest has been regularly paid, and though he has never even asked for the principal, is, I find, about to seize upon and sell the property.”

“Is it possible? Are you sure of it? Have you heard it from himself?”

“Yes; I went to him as soon as I had an intimation on the subject, and found him determined; nor could I prevail upon him to promise to give me any time to look about me, except on a condition, which he had before proposed to me, but which I cannot possibly comply with.”

“And what may that be?” asked the master of the house.

“That I would consent to become his son-in-law,” replied Norman, whilst his cheeks became tinged with a color not unworthy of a young girl.

“Truly, I should suppose that would be no very unacceptable proposal,” returned Mr. Woodford, with a smile. “Maria Hinckley is a very sweet, pretty girl, and is generally thought a very amiable one. Beside which, it is well known she will have a very handsome fortune.”

“That is all very true, and I admire Maria exceedingly; but, unfortunately, there is an insurmountable obstacle in the way.”

“You mean, I suppose, that you are not in love, whatever she may be.”

“I have no reason to imagine that she is any more in love with me than I am with her.”

“But may it not be worth while, my young friend,” said Mr. Woodford, in a serious tone, “to consider whether this love which young people are so apt to think indispensable, is really so essential as they imagine. I am myself disposed to think that if there is care taken to choose a partner with amiable dispositions and correct principles, there would be as much real happiness found in the end, as if they allowed themselves to be wholly guided by the love that is proverbially blind.”

“But if the little god has happened to stumble in the way first,” said Horton, laughing, “what is to be done then?”

“Ah, true, that is another matter. I forgot at the time what was whispered about that pretty little Miss Shirley, who paid your mother so long a visit last summer. She was, indeed, a very fine girl, and as she and Lucy have been such great friends ever 145 since they became acquainted, I would advise you, if you are not quite sure of your ground, to bespeak the interest of your old school-fellow and playmate. What say you, Lucy? You would do your best to aid Norman’s cause, would you not?” But Lucy, who had before been sewing at a wonderful rate, just at the moment her father appealed to her, happened to drop her needle, so that when he paused for a reply, she was too much occupied in searching the carpet to give it.

“Let me assist you,” said Horton, but before he reached the place where the needle had dropt, she had found it, and risen from her bending posture.

“Why, my child, you have sent all the blood of your body into your face, by stooping to search for that foolish needle,” said her father. And, indeed, the poor girl’s face was a perfect scarlet, and the beautifully defined shades of white and red, which were amongst her striking beauties, were completely destroyed.

“You haven’t told us yet,” continued the father, as Lucy made a slight effort to shake back the bright auburn tresses which seemed to try to curtain her face till it recovered its usual hue, “whether you will give Norman your vote and interest.”

“Oh, certainly, papa! Norman knows well enough it will always give me pleasure to be of service to him,” said the young girl, but in consequence, perhaps, of the blood having been forced into her head, her voice had not its sweet silvery sound, but seemed husky and scarcely audible.

“As soon as I have settled Hinckley’s affair, I believe I shall be tempted to come and make a trial of your kindness,” said the young man; “but as long as I am in his clutches, it would be inexcusable in me to try to involve any other person in my fortunes.”

“We will soon give him his quietus,” returned Mr. Woodford; “Lucy, dear, where did I put those notes?”

“I don’t know, papa, I never saw them. Indeed I didn’t know you had received them till I heard you mention it just now.”

“That’s strange! You are always with me, and know every thing I either do or say.”

“But you know you sent me yesterday morning to see brother Henry, when sister sent word he was sick; and I suppose the gentleman came while I was away.”

“Ah, true, so he did; and where was I dear—what room was I in. Sickness has destroyed my memory so entirely that I cannot remember any thing.”

“I left you in the breakfast-room reading, and when I came back, you were in this room lying down.”

“Yes, I remember now, I felt what I thought were premonitory symptoms of spasms, and hastened to lie down. But no doubt I put the notes by first, though where I don’t recollect. Go, dear, and look in my desk. You will probably find them in the large red pocket-book or in one of the little drawers, or—”

“I will look everywhere, papa,” interrupted Lucy, who had now recovered her voice and natural color, and immediately left the room.

“It seems a strange thing,” said Mr. Woodford, turning to his companion, “that I should be so careless about such a sum of money; but the fact is, I had already set my house in order, as far as money matters are concerned, and was therefore almost sorry to have my mind called back to such a subject, from things of so much higher importance.”

“There is one thing, however, in the business,” said Norman, “which cannot fail to be gratifying, and that is the proof your friend has given of his honorable feelings.”

“Yes, that gave me sincere pleasure; and, indeed, I don’t pretend to say that the money itself was not very acceptable, for though we have had enough to live upon comfortably whilst all together, it will be but a small portion for each when divided amongst my large family.”

Lucy now returned to the room, but with a look of disappointment. The notes were no where to be found. Again and again she was sent on various errands of search, but all proved equally fruitless.

“I should not wonder, after all,” said the invalid, “if I merely put them into my pocket till you came home;” and as he spoke he began to draw one piece of paper out of his pockets after another—but the right ones were not there.

“Papa,” said Lucy, and the color almost forsook her cheeks, “you gave me some paper out of your pocket last night to light the lamp with.”

“And what sort of paper was it?” asked the father.

“It was too dark for me to see it, but it felt soft and thin.”

“Was it single or double?”

“It was double; but I cannot tell whether it was in one or two pieces.”

“What did you do with the part that was not consumed? If the number is left, the money may still be obtained.”

“I threw it into the fire,” replied Lucy, in a mournful tone.

“Then I am afraid it is gone,” said the father “But keep up your spirits, Norman, I have promised my aid, and you shall have it, unless death overtake me before I have time to make the arrangement. I cannot think of letting one so deserving be trodden on by the foot of persecution.”

“For myself,” returned Horton, “it would not be of much consequence to have to begin the world again, even with very limited means. I am young and healthy, and have had an education which has put many resources in my power. But my poor mother! It would go hard, indeed, at her age, and with her delicate health, to be turned away from the scene of all her early pleasures, and which is endeared to her by a thousand tender associations.”

“It must not be,” said the invalid; “and I will see after the business as soon as I have taken a little rest; but at present I feel rather exhausted.”

Horton then took leave, and Lucy, after assisting her father to lie down, resumed her accustomed seat, 146 and began to sew, her active mind keeping pace with her no less active fingers. With painful anxiety she dwelt on the state of her only surviving parent, and on the loneliness and destitution in which she would be left were he to be taken from her. It was true she had a brother older than herself, but she remembered with a sigh, how little either he or his wife were calculated to fill up the vacuum. The rest of the children were all younger than herself, and were consequently of an age rather to require protection than to render it. A sister of her father’s had promised to remain with the younger branches of the family, but though a well-meaning woman, she was but a poor substitute for the parent that was about to be taken from her. Then her thoughts would turn to Norman Horton’s embarrassments, and to the distress of his poor mother—and the tears of sympathy often filled her soft beautiful eyes, though they were as often dashed away, lest they should be observed by her father. Indeed, the gentle, self-denying girl, had learnt to deprive herself, almost wholly, of the luxury of tears, from an anxiety to keep her parent’s mind composed and tranquil. But nature would sometimes have its course, and on this day it was unusually imperative. “It would be strange if I did not feel for Mrs. Horton,” she argued with herself, as if anxious to find an excuse for the tears which in spite of her utmost efforts would course each other down her cheeks. “It would be most ungrateful of me did I not do so, for ever since mother’s death she has behaved to me with even maternal tenderness. It is true I have not seen much of her of late, but that is certainly not owing to any fault of hers.” The truth is that since the visit of Miss Shirley to Mrs. Horton, Norman and Lucy had met much less frequently than formerly. That young lady had hinted to Lucy the probability of an engagement taking place between herself and Norman, and as he had since that time been a much less frequent visiter at Mr. Woodford’s, Lucy concluded that the engagement had actually taken place. It was a subject which she had never ventured either to inquire into, or even to examine her own bosom upon, for though in the habit of scrutinizing her thoughts and feelings on all others, on this one she was a complete coward, and preferred remaining in ignorance to risking the result of an investigation. It was true that from what Norman had said that morning, it was evident no actual engagement yet existed, but as it was equally evident that it was a thing he desired, she was determined to use whatever influence she had in forwarding his wishes, though she at the same time felt ashamed of the strange sensations that the probability of being called upon to perform such an office, excited in her mind. She was, however, routed from these interesting though painful reveries by the voice of her father. On going to his bed-side she was exceedingly alarmed at the expression of his countenance, and the blueness round his mouth, which always preceded one of his severe attacks.

“Go, Lucy,” said he, in a feeble voice, “and look in the private drawer in my writing-desk. I had my desk open to write a receipt, and I may perhaps have put the notes in that drawer.”

“But, papa, you will be left alone,” objected the daughter.

“Send your aunt to me,” returned the invalid, “and look well, for I am exceedingly anxious on poor Norman’s account.”

Lucy did as desired, but with a faint and trembling heart; first, however, dispatching one of her brothers to summon the doctor, for there was a something about her father’s look that seemed to say, they would soon be an orphan family.

The writing-desk was diligently searched, and every paper it contained carefully examined, but in vain, and she was just turning the key to lock it again, when she was hastily called by her aunt, who said her father had made two or three attempts to speak, but she could not understand him. Lucy ran with all the speed of which she was capable to the bed-side of the invalid, but could scarcely restrain a scream of horror at sight of the frightful change that had taken place in the few minutes she had been absent. The blueness that she had before observed around his mouth had extended to his lips, and his whole face wore that expression that all who have attended the bed of death know as the indications of approaching dissolution. The moment she appeared he motioned to her to put her head close to his mouth, when he said, in a voice scarcely audible, “I know now, they are in the—” but the last word, though evidently spoken, could not be heard.

“Never mind the notes, dear papa,” cried Lucy, in an agony of distress, “only keep yourself composed and let them take their chance.”

But the dying man shook his head, and again attempted to speak. “Look in the—” but again the word died away, and though the anxious girl laid her ear close to the blue and stiffening lips, she was unable to catch a shadow of the sound which they emitted. After lying a few minutes as if to collect the small portion of strength yet remaining, the sufferer made another effort, and again Lucy put her ear to his now cold lips, and stretched every faculty to catch the sound, far more, however, for the sake of satisfying him, than on account of the money itself; but the word “in” was all she could distinguish. Distressed beyond measure at seeing his ineffectual efforts, she cried, “Don’t attempt to speak, dear papa, but let me guess, and if I am right only make a motion of assent.” She then guessed the breakfast-table drawer, the drawer in her own work-box, and a variety of similar places, but received no intimation in return. Whilst thus engaged the physician arrived, who, struck with the extreme stillness of his patient, endeavored to raise his head, but in so doing he found that life was already extinct, and the spirit which had made its last effort in an attempt to aid a fellow-creature, had burst its prison bars.

We pass over the grief of the mourning family. Those who have never experienced such an affliction could have little idea of it from our description, and those who have already tasted the bitter cup, 147 have no need of any thing to give clearness to their perceptions. Suffice it, then, to say, that after the first paroxysms of grief were over, Lucy’s mind reverted to the state of her friends from whom she had received many kind and sympathizing messages, and assurances that nothing but severe sickness would have prevented Mrs. Horton from offering them in person. After some consideration about how she should act, Lucy determined it would only be right to inform Norman of her father’s ineffectual efforts to serve him, and for this purpose she sent a request that he would call upon her. He was not long obeying the summons, and entered the room with a countenance little less agitated than her own.

“I would not have waited to be told to come,” said he, in a tone of deep feeling, “had I not been afraid of my visit being attributed to a selfish motive.”

“I know well that selfishness forms no part of your character,” replied Lucy, making a strong effort to speak with composure; “but though my poor father was deprived of the pleasure of serving you, I was anxious you should know that his very last efforts were made in your behalf. Could I have made out his last words, you might still have had the assistance you require.”

“I beg you will not trouble yourself any more about the matter,” returned Horton, endeavoring to speak cheerfully. “The worst, I believe, is now over, for the sheriff is already in possession of the place.”

“And your mother?” said Lucy, raising her soft eyes in anxious suspense to his face.

“She has been, and is still ill, but I hope she is gradually becoming more resigned. Transplantation, however, will, I fear, go hard with her.”

“Take care, Norman,” said Lucy, earnestly, “that you bring not severe repentance upon yourself by exposing her to it.”

“But what can I do? I have no alternative. I have left no stone unturned to procure the money; and if a few months had been allowed me, I could easily have obtained it, but this is just the time when everybody’s money is locked up.”

“Mr. Hinckley offered you an alternative,” said Lucy, timidly.

“And is it possible that you can advise me to accept it, Lucy! Can you, who know what it is to love, offer me such advice?”

“Who told you I knew how to love?” asked Lucy, in a tone of extreme alarm.

“I scarcely know whether it is honorable in me to repeat what was told me in confidence, but I had it from Emma Shirley that you had accepted the addresses of Joseph Constant.”

“Then she must have been trying the extent of your credulity,” returned the young girl, with a look of ingenuousness that could not for a moment be doubted, “for she knew very well that he was an object of actual dislike to me.”

“And yet he has visited you for a long time both regularly and frequently,” said Horton, whilst his eyes began to sparkle, and the cloud that had for months overspread his fine countenance was rapidly dispersing.

“He has come to the house both regularly and frequently, it is true, but never with my consent. Brother Henry, I scarcely know why, has undertaken to espouse his cause, and to bring him here. Though exceedingly annoyed at the circumstance, I could not bear to complain of it to papa, for fear of agitating him, and therefore satisfied myself with taking good care that my own sentiments were clearly understood.”

“Lucy,” said Horton, taking her hand tenderly, whilst a soul full of happiness and affection beamed in his eyes, “as long as I believed your heart to be disengaged, I used to flatter myself with the hope of one day making it mine; and now that I find it is still at liberty, the same fond hope is again swelling in my bosom and urging me to renew my endeavors. Say, dearest Lucy, would the effort be altogether a hopeless one?”

We cannot pretend to say what was Lucy’s reply, but we know the hand he had taken still remained in his possession, when an hour or two had elapsed and they began to think about the passage of time. Never once during that period had the thought of old Hinckley and his inveterate persecution entered their heads; or if for a moment the circumstance of having but little to commence life with obtruded itself on their recollection, it was met without fear or apprehension. They were both young, vigorous and active, and though they might have to work a little harder, their toil would be sweetened by the delightful idea that they mutually labored for each other.

“It will still be a hard struggle for my poor mother,” said Horton, after his full heart had so far found vent as to enable him to turn his thoughts once more on his sorrowing parent; “but she loves us both too well to grieve long when she sees us so happy.”

“And though,” said Lucy, “she will have to live in a much smaller house, and to exchange her large and beautiful garden for a very circumscribed one, she will still have the rich garden of nature to look at; and beside, she will have another child to watch over her, and administer to her comfort.”

The day of sale arrived, and it having been proposed by Lucy that Norman should bring his mother to spend that day with her, that she might be out of the way of the noise and bustle with which the house would necessarily be surrounded. The old lady came at an early hour, and Lucy exerted her every art to amuse her, and divert her mind from what was going on at home. As she was still a great invalid, she was obliged to recline almost constantly on the sofa, but she proved how much her thoughts clung to the home that was about to be so cruelly taken away from her, by the frequent questions she asked.

“Are the people beginning to gather yet, Lucy?” she asked, as she observed Lucy’s face turned toward the window which commanded a view of the place.

“Every thing seems very quiet yet,” returned her affectionate attendant.

148 “I see two, three, nine, seven wagons,” said Lucy’s little sister.

“And I see a great many men riding,” said a little fellow still younger than she who had just spoken. Lucy, anxious to stop the children’s remarks, enticed them away from the window by giving them a picture-book to look at. Then turning to Mrs. Horton, she asked if she could not read something to her to amuse her.

“Amusement is out of the question, dear,” said the invalid, “but you may read something that will give me a useful lesson. Take the Bible, my child, and read the sermon on the mount. I always feel myself a better woman after I have read it.”

Lucy took her father’s large quarto Bible, and the children, leaving their own pictures, came to stand by her as she did so, for it was beautifully illustrated, and they were anxious to see the engravings, which they had seldom a chance of doing, as it was too valuable a book for them to be allowed to touch themselves. But just as Lucy was opening it, the little boy, who happened to turn his head to the window, exclaimed, “Look! look at that man standing up above all the rest, and flourishing something in his hand!” Mrs. Horton heaved a deep sigh, and turned her face toward the back of the sofa, whilst Lucy, making a motion to the children to be silent, began to read. But just as she had pronounced the words, “Blessed are they that mourn, for they shall be comforted,” a servant came to tell her she was wanted, and giving the children permission (by way of keeping them quiet) to look at the pictures whilst she was absent, she left the room. She was not gone many minutes, but when she came back she found that they had been disputing which should turn over the leaves, and in the struggle they had let the ponderous volume fall on the floor, where it still lay, with the leaves doubled in all directions. Mortified to see a book that her father had always forbidden the children to touch so abused, she ran to lift it up, and as she did so, two pieces of paper fell from between some of the leaves. But what was her surprise and delight, on looking at them, to see they were the two lost notes. Uttering a scream of delight, she ran out of the room, without even stopping to tell Mrs. Horton what she had found, from the fear that the auctioneer’s hammer might fall before she got within hearing. Camilla herself could scarcely have flown more rapidly across the intermediate fields, and just at the moment that the hammer was descending, evidently for the last time, she contrived to make her cry of “stop! stop!” heard, and the auctioneer’s hand was instantly arrested. The next moment Norman was at her side. The rest may be easily imagined. There is none, we presume, who will not rejoice at the defeat of Norman’s ungenerous persecutor; nor is there a heart so cold as not to sympathize with the invalid mother at finding she was still to remain in the home endeared to her by so many tender reminiscences, or with the young lovers, at the happy prospect that was opened out before them by the recovery of the lost notes.






Alone, withdrawn from all the thoughtless throng,

  I seek in solitude a peaceful hour,

Nor deem that others who are gay are wrong,

  If midst multipled cares they have such power.

But I would commune with my heavy heart

  Beneath the foliage of this lonely bower;

Perchance a soothing vision here may start,

  Or at my feet may rise some tender flower,

Refreshing to the wounded spirit’s thirst,

  Which for the moment I may call my own,

Unlike the hopes and buds that gladdened first,

  And paled and withered ’neath the world’s rude frown.

But hope seems vain, for round me sleep the dead,

  Who quaffed their pleasures, and at last laid down,

While all the aims and sweets of life have fled,

  And twining grass is now their mournful crown.


Yet there is something soothing in the air;

  The thrush sings softly as it flits along;

The towering trees shut out the sun’s bold glare,

  And round my temples breathes the wind’s low song:

A katy-did chirps on a marble urn,

  The distant doves their plaintive moans prolong,

And sweet perfumes arise where’er I turn,

  To woo a wand’rer from a world of wrong.

And why should one look further for a grave,

  And seek vain pomps and plaudits ere he die?

Earth’s gold is venom, each great king a slave

  To some vile passion, and enjoyments fly

We know not whither, but they ne’er return;

  And memory brings but a tear or sigh

For moments lost, for bliss we once could spurn,

  Bright dreams of youth, or friends that buried lie.


Under yon willow bending near the brook,

  Where crystal waters glide the shrubs among—

Where a lone mortal, with abstracted look,

  Is brooding o’er some grief his heart hath stung

Methinks that one might bid a last farewell,

  To all the foes that here his bosom wrung,

And like the martyr who, forgiving, fell,

  Ask no sad requiem o’er his ashes sung.

O, in the final and oblivious rest,

  I would recline beneath such hallowed sod,

Where flowers sweet might bloom above my breast,

  No longer mark for Slander’s pointed rod!

And yet a day must come when e’en the dead

  Will bid adieu to the dark valley’s clod,

And all the just, with spotless pinions spread,

  Shall soar above to their effulgent God!




The soul really grand is only tested in its errors. As we know the true might of the intellect by the rich resources and patient strength with which it redeems a failure, so do we prove the elevation of the soul by its courageous return into light—its instinctive rebound into higher air—after some error that has darked its vision and soiled its plumes.


            You tread on dangerous ground,

A mental bog that quakes beneath your feet.

These words would seem to come from humbleness,

And low opinion of yourself and man,

Yet are engendered by the rankest pride,

Arrayed in robes of meek humility—

Stop! the next step is infidelity!

Contempt for man begets contempt for God;

He who hates man, must scorn the source of man,

And challenge, as unwise, his awful Maker.

The next step, doubt—and then comes unbelief;

Last, you raise man above all else beside,

And make him chiefest in the universe.

So, from a self-contempt grows impious pride,

Which swells your first-thought pigmy to a giant,

And gives the puffed up atom fancied sway.

God is! Philosophy here ends her flight!

This is the height and term of human reason;

A fact that, like the whirling Norway pool,

Draws to its centre all things, swallows all.

How can you know God’s nature to Himself?

How learn His purpose in creating man?

Enough for you to know that here you are—

A thought of God made manifest on earth.

Ah, yet His voice is heard within the heart,

Faint, but oracular, it whispers there;

Follow that voice, love all, and trust to Him.


I never see a fairy girl, with health’s glow upon her cheek, and love’s light in her beaming eye; I never hear her silvery laugh, and listen to the echo of her sweet voice, but I think of the darkness of coming years. I have seen so many a beautiful thing wither and fall to the grave; I have watched the overthrow of so many earthly schemes, and noted the death of so many earthly hopes, that I tremble for the trusting, warm heart, which I know must ere long bleed over some faded dream or withered idol. I have stood by the low, calm resting-place of age, where the aged man, with his snowy locks, was sweetly sleeping; but I shed no tear over his fate. For must it not be pleasant, after a long life of care and toil, and it may be of suffering, to lie down at last in the grave, to bid adieu to a changing world, and welcome the joys of everlasting life? But my tears have watered the fresh sod beneath which slumbered the young, the gay, the beautiful. I have wept, Heaven knows how bitterly, over the blighting of youthful loveliness—over the faded wreath of earthly love. But amid all the gloom, all the decay around, there comes a soft, sweet whisper—a low, gentle breathing, as from an angel’s lips, soothing the heart, and pouring into the bleeding bosom the balm of consolation.

The following beautiful poem is taken from a volume recently published in London, entitled, “Poems by a Sempstress,” and has never been reprinted in this country. It possesses great merits, and if the authorship be authentic, is certainly a remarkable production.


Not in the laughing bowers,

Where, by green twining arms, a pleasant shade,

A summer-noon is made;

And where swift-footed hours

Steal the rich breath of the enamored flowers;

Dream I—nor where the golden glories be,

At sunset paving o’er the flowing sea,

And to pure eyes the faculty is giv’n

To trace the smooth ascent from earth to heaven.


Not on the couch of ease,

With all appliances of joys at hand;

Soft light, sweet fragrance, beauty at command,

Viands that might a god-like palate please,

And music’s soul-creative ecstasies;

Dream I—nor gloating o’er a wide estate,

Till the full, self-complacent heart, elate,

Well satisfied with bliss of mortal birth,

Sighs for an immortality on earth:


But where the incessant din

Of iron hands, and roar of brazen throats,

Join their unmingling notes;

While the long summer day is pouring in,

Till day is done, and darkness doth begin;

Dream I—or in the corner where I lie,

On winter nights, just covered from the sky;

Such is my fate, and barren as it seem,

Yet, thou blind soulless scorner! yet, I dream.


And, yet, I dream—

Dream what, were man more just, I might have been!

How strong, how fair, how kindly and serene,

Glowing of heart, and glorious of mien,

The conscious crown to Nature’s blissful scene;

In just and equal brotherhood to glean,

With all mankind, exhaustless pleasure keen:

Such is my dream.


And, yet, I dream—

I, the despised of fortune, lift mine eye,

Bright with the lustre of integrity,

In unappealing wretchedness on high,

And the last rage of destiny defy;

Resolved, alone to live—alone to die,

Nor swell the tide of human misery.


And, yet, I dream—

Dream of a sleep where dreams no more shall come;

My last, my first, my only welcome home!

Rest, unbeheld since life’s beginning stage,

Sole remnant of my glorious heritage

Unalienable, I shall find thee yet,

And in thy soft embrace, the past forget!

Thus do I dream.



From “Life and Literary Remains of Keats,” by R. M. Milnes.

With your patience, I will return to Wordsworth—whether or no he has an extended vision or a circumscribed grandeur—whether he is an eagle in his nest or 150 on the wing; and, to be more explicit, and to show you how tall I stand by the giant, I will put down a simile of human life, as far as I now perceive it; that is, to the point to which I say we both have arrived at. Well, I compare human life to a large mansion of many apartments, two of which I can only describe, the doors of the rest being as yet shut upon me. The first we step into we call the infant or thoughtless chamber, in which we remain as long as we do not think. We remain there a long while, and notwithstanding the doors of the second chamber remain wide open, showing a bright appearance, we care not to hasten to it, but are, at length, imperceptibly impelled by the awakening of the thinking principle within us. We no sooner get into the second chamber, which I shall call the chamber of maiden-thought, than we become intoxicated with the light and the atmosphere. We see nothing but pleasant wonders, and think of delaying there for ever in delight. However, among the effects this breathing is father of, is that tremendous one of sharpening one’s vision into the heart and nature of man, of convincing one’s nerves that the world is full of misery and heart-break, pain, sickness, and oppression; whereby this chamber of maiden-thought becomes gradually darkened, and at the same time, on all sides of it, many doors are set open—but all dark—all leading to dark passages. We see not the balance of good and evil; we are in a mist, we are in that state, we feel the “Burden of the Mystery.” To this point was Wordsworth come, as far as I can conceive, when he wrote “Tintern Abbey,” and it seems to me that his genius is explorative of those dark passages. Now if we live, and go on thinking, we too shall explore them. He is a genius and superior [to] us, in so far as he can, more than we, make discoveries and shed a light in them. Here I must think Wordsworth is deeper than Milton, though I think it has depended more upon the general and gregarious advance of intellect than individual greatness of mind. From the “Paradise Lost,” and the other works of Milton, I hope it is not too presuming, even between ourselves, to say, that his philosophy, human and divine, may be tolerably understood by one not much advanced in years. In his time, Englishmen were just emancipated from a great superstition, and men had got hold of certain points and resting-places in reasoning which were too newly born to be doubted, and too much opposed by the rest of Europe, not to be thought ethereal and authentically divine. Who could gainsay his ideas on virtue, vice, and chastity, in “Comus,” just at the time of the dismissal of a hundred social disgraces? Who would not rest satisfied with his hintings at good and evil in his “Paradise Lost,” when just free from the inquisition and burning in Smithfield? The Reformation produced such immediate and great benefits, that Protestantism was considered under the immediate eye of heaven, and its own remaining dogmas and superstitions then, as it were, regenerated, constituted those resting-places and seeming sure points of reasoning. From what I have mentioned, Milton, whatever he may have thought in the sequel, appears to have been content with these by his writings. He did not think with the human heart as Wordsworth has done; yet Milton, as a philosopher, had surely as great powers as Wordsworth. What is then to be inferred? Oh! many things: it proves there is really a grand march of intellect; it proves that a mighty Providence subdues the mightiest minds to the service of the time being, whether it be in human knowledge or religion.


The woes that cannot in any earthly way be escaped, are those that admit least earthly comforting. Of all trite, worn-out, hollow-mockeries of comfort that were ever uttered by people who will not take the trouble of sympathizing with others, the one I dislike the most is the exhortation not to grieve over an event, “for it cannot be helped.” Do you think, if I could help it, I would sit still, content to mourn? Do you not believe that as long as hope remained I would be up and doing? I mourn because what has occurred cannot be helped. The reason you give me for not grieving, is the very and sole reason of my grief. Give me nobler and higher reasons for enduring meekly what my father sees fit to send, and I will try earnestly and faithfully to be patient. But mock me not, or any other mourner, with the speech, “Do not grieve, for it cannot be helped. It is past remedy.”

What a single word can do!

Thrilling all the heart-strings through,

Calling forth fond memories,

Raining round hope’s melodies,

Steeping all in one bright hue—

What a single word can do!


What a single word can do!

Making life seem all untrue,

Driving joy and hope away,

Leaving not one cheering ray,

Blighting every flower that grew—

What a single word can do!


There are certain classes of passions and vices which people often find an excuse for indulging by persuading themselves that they are invariably connected with some great or noble feeling. Now, of this character is revenge, which men are apt to fancy must be the offspring of a generous and vehement heart, and a fine, determined, and sensitive mind. But this is a mistake. Revenge, in the abstract, is merely a prolongation throughout a greater space of time, of that base selfishness which leads us to feel a momentary impulse to strike any thing that hurts or pains us either mentally or corporeally; and the more brutal, and animal, and beast-like be the character of the person, the greater will be his disposition to revenge. But we must speak one moment upon its modifications. Revenge always proceeds either from a sense of real injury, or a feeling of wounded vanity. It seldom, however, arises from any real injury; and when it does, it would (if possible to justify it at all,) be more justifiable; but in this modification, a corrective is often found in the great mover of man’s heart, and vanity itself whispers, it will seem nobler and more generous to forgive. The more ordinary species of revenge, however, and the more filthy, is that which proceeds from wounded vanity—when our pride or our conceit has been greatly hurt—not alone in the eyes of the world, but in our own eyes—when the little internal idol that we have set up to worship in our hearts, has been pulled down from the throne of our idolatry, and we have been painfully shown that it is nothing but a thing of gilt wood. Then, indeed, revenge, supported by the great mover of man’s heart, instead of being corrected by it, is insatiable and everlasting. But, in all cases, instead of being connected with any great quality, it is the fruit of a narrow mind, and a vain, selfish heart.

Oh, if people would but take as much pains to do good as they take to do evil—if even the well-disposed were as zealous in beneficence, as the wicked are energetic in wrong—what a pleasant little clod this earth of ours would be for us human crickets to go chirping about from morning till night.



Poems. By John G. Whittier. Illustrated by Hammott Billings. Boston: B. B. Mussey & Co. 1 vol. 8vo.

This is a beautiful and highly decorated volume, splendidly bound, and well printed. It is illustrated with engravings after original designs by H. Billings, a Boston artist of great and peculiar merit, whose fine and fertile genius we should like to see oftener employed in the illustration of the poets.

Whittier is a positive force in the community, and has popularity as well as reputation. As a poet of sentiment and imagination he is known wherever American literature is read, and has been recognized as an originality by criticism. But even if the critics had denounced, it would have made little difference with his popularity, for his burning lyrics have been sung and declaimed by thousands who know nothing and care nothing for questions relating to style and rhythm. A man with so grand and large a heart—a heart that instinctively runs out in sympathy with his fellow men, must necessarily exercise influence. But this sensibility, though an important and noble element in Whittier’s genius, occasionally does more than its portion of the work of production. Passion, of itself, is not a high peculiarity of a poet, but impassioned imagination is, perhaps, the highest. Now Whittier has passion and has imagination, but they are not always combined. Sensibility is only valuable as it gives force and fire to thought, and the grandest poems in the present collection are those in which conceptions are penetrated with emotions, and the least valuable are those in which emotions get the start of conceptions and roll out on their own account. The reader of the present volume, however, will find a class of poems in it essentially different from those which are intellectually vehement or passionately vehement—a class which are pure utterances of the author’s soul in its most contemplative moods. These are exquisitely tender and beautiful, giving evidence of a mind which to all lovely objects in the material world can

                “——Add the gleam,

The light that never was on sea or land.

The consecration and the poet’s dream.”

No one can read the present volume without being struck with the vigor and variety of the author’s mind, the breadth and intensity of his sympathies, and the true manliness of his character. The success of such a work is certain.

Remarks on the Science of History; Followed by an A Priori Autobiography. Boston: Crosby & Nichols. 1 vol. 12mo.

This is one of the most original and striking books ever published in the United States, and if it were not marred by some needless obscurities in the preface and notes, would be likely to obtain a popularity commensurate with its merits. It evinces a mind of great power in the region of pure thought, and of great acquisitions in metaphysical science. The leading object of the volume is to present universal history under the form of biography, and its hero is a person who lives the life of the race. It is assumed that he who thoroughly understands the present epoch must have reproduced, and lived through, in his private experience, all the religions, dispensations and civilizations which preceded it; and accordingly the author supposes the case of a man whose mind, in its development, passes through all the leading systems of philosophy which have successively appeared in the world, and lives them in thought as in different ages they have been lived in action. His hero accordingly lives and outlives sensuality, diabolism, atheism, deism, pantheism, Platonism, necessitarianism, transcendentalism, until he arrives at the belief of a living God and a Christian dispensation. The mental moods as well as the opinions of these different systems are represented, and an almost audacious expression given to some of them. Though the work is deficient somewhat in artistical as distinguished from logical completeness, and is too condensed in passages where expansion would have aided the reader, no person who avoids the notes and adheres to the autobiography, can fail to notice the clearness as well as the depth and force of mind it evinces. We are aware of no other book in which so much knowledge of mental philosophy is conveyed in so small a space. The exposition of Plato’s theory of Ideas—the stringent logic applied to the doctrine of necessity—the keenness with which the weak points of atheism are detected, and the remorseless analysis with which they are probed, and the masterly power of impassioned argumentation, fierce, rapid and close, with which the subject of the Will is cleared from its obscurities, all indicate a mind of no common order. The author is evidently a man destined to leave his mark on the philosophical literature of the country. In the present volume there are important and original ideas which will sooner or later become influential.

Remarks on the Past and its Legacies to American Society. By J. D. Nourse. Louisville: Morton & Griswold. 1 vol. 12mo.

Those of our readers who have any taste for the philosophy of history, and who are desirous to see how an American writer can handle the problems which have tasked the acutest and most comprehensive European intellects, had better procure this work. It is written in a style of much energy, beauty and clearness, and is the result of forcible and patient thinking on a wide basis of historical facts and principles. The author is a Kentuckian and a scholar in the true sense. Although the book evidences a familiarity with the productions of others in a similar department of letters, it is still original as well as powerful. There are sentences in it which deserve to pass into maxims; and through the whole volume none can fail to observe the steady and almost triumphant march of an independent and forcible intellect. We do not know how the work has succeeded at the west, but if it has failed to attract notice there, it shows that Kentucky is not so ready to recognize marked ability in letters as in politics. The author, from his position as an American, really holds an advantage over his European rivals; and the felicity and comprehensiveness of his grasp of some great principles, and the power with which he wields them, are in a considerable degree referable to his freedom from many prejudices which beset the largest minds abroad. This volume ought to give Mr. Nourse a name, and we trust it will have that large circulation which its importance and usefulness so richly merit.

Romance of Yachting. By Joseph C. Hart. New York: 152 Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 12mo.

This is a sprightly book, written in a dashing and defiant style, bristling with paradox and sparkling with whimsicalities. The peculiarity of the book consists in its dogmatism, and like all dogmatists the author gives as confident expression to the extravagances of his caprice as to the deductions of his understanding. Many topics are discussed which the title of the book would never suggest. Such are the remarks on the Puritans, Shakspeare, and the Moors in Spain. With regard to the first, the author chimes in with the opponents of the Puritans, and administers twenty lashes to “New England Conceit.” We do not know but that our Eastern friends have dilated a little too much on their ancestors, and been too prone to consider every thing excellent as dating from the Puritans, but certainly the style in which our New York brethren are now bragging about their progenitors, promises to outshine in pretension and impertinence every thing of the kind we have had in Massachusetts or Virginia. Mr. Hart, especially, fairly crows a note higher than any antiquarian chanticleer of ancestry it has ever been our fortune to meet in literature. There is a long passage in the book on Shakspeare, in which the author attempts to prove that in the plays published under Shakspeare’s name, there is little property belonging to him but the rant and obscenity. If Mr. Hart means his dissertation on this topic as badinage, it is rather tedious joking; and if he is in earnest, he shows a strange ignorance of facts and arguments which are as familiar to every student of English letters as his alphabet. Seriously, to combat such a clumsy specimen of irony would only turn the laugh against the critic, and no honor could possibly be gained in proving that the sun shines, or that “eggs is eggs.”

Apart from some extravagances of the kind we have noticed, the book is a grand and exhilarating one, and cannot fail to prove interesting to almost all classes of readers. To seamen, and to all who go out upon the sea in ships or yachts, it is an invaluable companion. The vigor, elasticity and decision of the style are in fine harmony with the frank, cordial, and somewhat chivalric nature of the author.

The Great Hoggarty Diamond. By W. M. Thackeray. New York: Harper & Brothers.

We believe that this novel was published before Vanity Fair, and it certainly cannot compare with that brilliant work in incident or characterization; but it is still well worthy a diligent reading. It relates principally to that pinchbeck class of English swells, known as “gents,” and represents English society, as seen through the medium of a cockney’s mind. Mr. Sam Titmarsh, the worthy autobiographer, is a vain but innocent gent, and tells his story with delicious simplicity, and occasionally with much pathos. His little wife is a gem. The scene in which she obtains the office of nurse to Lady Tiptoff’s child, is exquisitely natural and pathetic. Every reader is inclined to echo Mr. Yellowplush’s opinion, even as expressed in his original orthography. “You see, Tit, my boy,” he remarks to the happy husband, “I’m a oonnyshure, and up to enough; and if ever I see a lady in my life, Mrs. Titmarsh is one. I can’t be fimiliar with her as I am with you. There’s a somethink in her, a jennysquaw, that haws me, sir.”

The Forgery; a Tale. By G. P. R. James. New York: Harper & Brothers.

It is a common charge against critics that they do not read the books they review. We acknowledge the charge in the case of Mr. James’s latest novel, with a feeling akin to exultation. We have read some twenty of his romances, more to verify an opinion than to gratify a taste, and certainly the man is to be praised for doing so large an amount of business on so small a capital. Though his mind is exceedingly limited in its range, he has contrived to fill more space with his books than the most comprehensive and creative of intellects would be justified in occupying. His success must be mortifying to all novelists who really possess original power, and who consider that a new character is something else than an old one with a new name. If Mr. James possessed sufficient force to stamp any character, incident or description, on the imagination, he would miserably fail in the application of his science of repetition and philosophy of dilution. His salvation from popular martyrdom is owing to the very feebleness of the impression he makes on the popular mind.

Moneypenny; or the Heart of the World. A Romance of the Present Day. Illustrated by Darley. New York: Dewitt & Davenport. 1 vol.

This book has passed to a second edition, and promises to take a high rank among American romances. It is so altogether above the general run of novels published in a cheap form, that it is important for the public to understand that though in yellow covers, it has none of the nonsense, stupidity, and ribaldry commonly associated with yellow-covered literature. The author not only understands practical life practically, but he is a scholar and a man of original power. The work is exceedingly interesting, evinces a strong grasp of character, is well written, and while it deserves and will reward the attention of the more tasteful class of readers, it will tend to give a more important, because more numerous and sensitive class, a higher notion of the requirements of romance. We cordially wish the author success.

Model Men, Women and Children. Modeled by Horace Mayhew. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 12mo.

This little volume is crammed with shrewd and diverting satire, and illustrated by appropriate cuts. The series originally appeared in Punch. The author evidently understands all the fooleries and deviltries as well as most of the humanities of practical life; and he has commented upon them in a style which is universally appreciable. There is a sort of percussion-cap explosion of wit and satire which keeps attention constantly awake. The book, apart from its brilliancy and readableness, is a good medicine for “snobism” of all sorts.

Greyslaer; or a Romance of the Mohawk. By Charles Penno Hoffman. Fourth Edition. New York: Baker & Scribner. 1 vol. 12mo.

The sturdiest champion of literary nationality must concede to Mr. Hoffman the merit of being an American writer. He knows the country, is familiar with its scenery, sympathises with the events of its history, and understands its people, aboriginal and imported. The present novel, which has now reached its fourth edition—an honor enjoyed by few fictions—is a pregnant illustration of the author’s thorough nationality. He is an American without being an Americanism. We have not the least doubt that this edition of Greyslaer will receive a cordial welcome from all who are capable of appreciating the grand and chivalrous spirit which breathes through and animates the fine talents and large acquirements of the author.

Mirror of Nature: A Book of Instruction and Entertainment, 153 Translated from the German of G. H. Schubert, by William H. Furness, pp. 497. Philadelphia: Thomas, Cowperthwaite & Co.

Here is a good book, full of practical instruction, and of information that makes other knowledge practical. A German writer, a good man, has brought a well-stored mind to the task of preparing a volume that shall give the great authors on natural study, without the minuteness of a class-book, or the elaborate development of a thorough treatise. He has opened up the beautiful operations of Nature and her works, and has not neglected to recognize the soul as the antecedent of the body. So that while one is studying about the mighty gatherings of mineral wealth, the wonderful effects of chemical operations, and the instincts of animal life, he is constantly kept above his theme by the declared truth of his superiority to all these, in the possession of an immortal soul. A Christian American has given the work in an English form—good, pure, simple, expressive English—no Germanisms to offend the ear—and yet an occasional adaptation of a German mode of expressing thoughts shows the intimacy of the translator with the original, and his power to select the most expressive forms.

In this volume man is considered, and his power of mental and physical existence developed. The outreaching of the human mind is regarded as worthy of consideration, and lessons of usefulness derived therefrom. The volume before us is admirably suited to the classes of our public schools and to the general reader—and when furnished as it will be with a set of questions suited to the text, it will be a handbook for the classes, of immense usefulness.

Poems. By Charles G. Eastman. Montpelier: Eastman & Danforth. 1 vol. 18mo.

This volume is a collection of songs and short poems from the pen of one of the ablest political editors in Vermont. The book shows that the author’s heart is in what is called the right place, in spite of the stir and fret of politics. The characteristic of the volume is simplicity in the expression of emotion. There is no parade of ornament, and very little fanciful decoration, but the author contrives still to express a variety of moods in a most genuine way. The verse has a spring and elastic vigor in its movement, which continually suggests the notion of impromptu composition. The finest poem in the volume is the first, entitled “The Picture,” and certainly no poet could begin a collection with a piece more calculated to propitiate the reader, and make him look lovingly on what follows.

Foot-Prints. By R. H. Stoddard.

A copy of this neat little volume has been laid upon our table, and we have read it with great pleasure. The poems it contains are, generally, good. Some of them are marked with great felicity of thought and power of expression. Mr. Stoddard is familiar to the readers of “Graham’s Magazine,” as one of the contributors to its pages, and we have now on hand some of his poetical articles which we design publishing in due order. His contributions are favorite ones with our readers, who, if they wish to have a collection of the author’s writings, cannot do a better thing than obtain from the publishers, or at any of the principal bookstores, a copy of “Foot-Prints.”


The Mirror of Life.—We have caused to be prepared, as one of the embellishments of our Magazine for the present mouth, a picture entitled “The Mirror of Life.” As a picture, we think it good, excellent indeed, artistically considered; and the face of the female, the mother, nay, the whole form so far as visible, may be considered as beautiful. We had, in truth, some stronger terms to use with regard to this figure, but we forbear them now, and refer our male readers to the picture itself, to say whether they have seen any thing more handsome, more really beautiful, than that for a long time. And to the ladies we appeal with equal confidence, whether any one of them has seen so beautiful a representation of the female face and form for years—excepting only that which she sees reflected from her own mirror.

As for the little boy, we will confess, that though he has grown more comely under the burin of Mr. Tucker, we do not mean to claim any particular credit for his beauty; the truth is, the child looks like his father.

But the lesson of the picture is what concerns us. The prima facia evidence of this picture is against the character of the mother for proper discipline; she has given her child a mirror for a plaything, a hammer would complete the picture and the mirror. But that would be to regard the representation physically. The child is looking into the mirror with earnestness. Do our readers mark the Johnsonian cast of the little philosopher’s head? Do they see how he has set his eyes and mouth, as if he would see and taste what of life lies before him. And with no less intensity does the mother gaze into the mirroring eyes of her child; and as he gathers from the glass in front of him the shadows which coming events cast before them, she collects the facts from his eyes, and is wrapt into the future, not of herself, but of her child.

What would one give to learn that future? to gaze into the mirror of life, and discover its terrible lessons in advance! Could we prevent them by learning?—Alas! no—if we could, we could not learn. Can we look into the future and see what is to take place, and then by efforts prevent the occurrence? If we could prevent that which we saw, how could we see it?

But the little fellow is peering down the vista of time, and he is seeing care and anxiety dogging his heels; he is looking at the antagonistic movements of his life, and wondering how life can be, and be thus opposed. He is seeing his future self, bowing down to the object of affection, and he is hearing her calculations of the advantages which his offer had over that of another; and his young heart sickens at the mercenary selfishness of the idea.

But if the mirror reflects or prefigures truly, his own heart had made the same calculations before it was offered. And this is the common experience of life. Men pause in the midst of their business or their pleasure, and begin to think about marriage; they are reminded of this by the movements of others, or the customs of their kind. Do they look about and see where they can bestow the most of benefit, or confer the greatest amount of good? Do they say, “I have wealth and position, here is a lovely 154 female, poor and humble, the ascentive power of my possessions will take her up?” Or do they set down and make the calculations as to the amount of personal benefits which they would derive from the match?

Ninety-nine times in the hundred the calculations upon a wife and her uses, are as carefully and as selfishly made by man, as are those upon the purchase of real estate, or stock for a stable or a farm. And we do not mean to say that on the whole marriages resulting from such calculations are not productive of as much content as those which seem to be made with all the disinterestedness which novelists ascribe to their favorite heroes and heroines.

Well, when the calculation is complete, the gentleman hastens off and proposes to the lady; if the female is found to pause upon the proposal, and to ask herself, or to ask some one who knows, what are the means which this lover possesses to make her happier than she is now, or as happy as twenty other young men who are ready (when they have finished their calculations) to make the same offer; if she pause thus and inquire, she is set down as a cold-hearted, selfish, intereste girl, with no force of affection, with no ideas of a married life beyond the bargaining of the shopman.

Yet if two months after marriage that same woman should be found holding such discourse with herself about any of the affairs of life in which she or her husband may have an interest, the whole world would pronounce her a woman of sound principles, of good common sense, and a pattern of wives. Yet, in the transaction which of all others most concerns her, she must not urge advantages, must not calculate the probable chances, must shut her eyes, and leap into a gulf which can never restore her to the situation which she left. Perhaps some of our young female readers will look over the shoulder of the child, and see what the mirror says about such parts of life.

Doubtless the mirror of life furnishes much of pleasure, much of high distinction to the young gazer into its vaticinating depths; for what child of such a mother ever lived long without desirable distinction? All that we have of value in our character, and even in our later condition, seems to spring from our mother. Wealth and consequent position may be derived from the father, but unless the gentle monitions, the constant watchfulness, the careful mind-moulding and character-forming devotion of the mother prepare the child to retain and exalt his position and augment his wealth, the legacy from the father will waste away; wealth will be dissipated and position lost in the early encounters of the youth with the world. But from infancy to adolescence, from youth to manhood, and onward to age, the legacy of the mother has continual increase; the beauties of mind which she imparted augment with development, and the lofty lessons of virtue which she gave, comes in man’s intercourse to be the rule of his conduct, and means of his distinction.

Is it not probable that the mother is now giving one of her lessons to the child, imparting some instruction which shall hereafter be fruitful of good?

It does not seem that the heavenly look which rests upon her face is the consequence of a mother’s love for the fame and fortunes of her child. She is just entertaining the bright idea of the immortality of her son. She is looking deep into his heart through his eyes, and she is thinking how she shall impart that mighty thought to the boy; how she shall make him comprehend her views about the antecedence of his soul, that doctrine upon which must rest all her lessons of life, and all her hopes of good from these lessons.

The mother has caught the idea (whether true or false it matters not) that her infant has some high remembrances of a former existence, and that struck with what he sees in the mirror of life, he is attempting to recall something of that state from which he came to animate the body where youth seems to overshadow the past in his soul and clog its movements toward the communion it once enjoyed. She sees, or thinks she sees, something of this, and she catches the ennobling thought that the antecedent of that soul, its primary and indefeasible right to consideration, demand her utmost care, and that the cultivation of the higher powers of the intellect must be made subservient to this still higher power—the immortal principal—where this union of soul and body shall be made profitable to both. That is the mission of the mother; her reward is not in the wealth, the honor, or the happiness of her child—circumstances, consequent though these be upon her teachings—her great reward, the certain and abiding compensation to the virtuous mother for rearing her son to virtue, is found in that state where virtue has its full appreciation, and affection its perfect work. “The mirror of life” is full of lessons; it reflects truths that need only appropriate display to make them profitable; and happy will it be for all, if, catching some of the foreshadowings of the mirror of life, we adapt our conduct to the events; and though we may not be able to change an order of Providence, we can at least make the effect of that Providence beneficial to ourselves.



My Dear Jeremy,—Do you ever think of our boarding-school loves, and wonder where all those bright eyes, which used to blaze as from a battery upon us from that pyramid of laughing faces, rising one above the other to the topmost pane of those ample windows, are weeping or laughing now? Do you promenade on the west side, as of yore, without a sigh, and gaze into those deserted windows, from which smiles and rose-tinted notes were showered down upon us with such munificence, without a thought of the fair hands and glad hearts which then gave a sort of sunlight to our devotion—the Mecca to which we turned in our morning prayers and evening rambles? Is it not a sad thought, that as we journey through life, the very innocency of boyhood, the first fresh feelings of the heart, are things of which it is conventional to be ashamed? As if it were a happiness, which we should call a conquest, to learn the bitter lessons of life, at a sacrifice of all the fond recollections of youth, a triumph to know the secret of deceiving with smiles, and of wringing the hand kindly, of people we despise. Yet must we learn the uses of adversity by time, and feel that the brightest of our days are passed forever; that hope, having cheated us for a thousand times, has become bankrupt in our esteem, while the past, brilliant and certain in joys experienced, recalls with the flitting present, doubts of true happiness for us again. It is a stern lesson—that which experience teaches us as we advance in years, to live a life of distrust and doubt, to believe all goodness assumed, and friendship but a cheat; to think that every man’s hand is either raised against his brother, or is thrust into his pocket, and that there is no such thing as self-sacrifice, except among the Hindoos.

But, Jeremy, not to speak of instances, all of which must be as fresh to your memory as to mine, I come back to the first question—do you ever think of our boarding-school loves? and mingle with the remembrance those unexpressed hopes and fears which flutter in the hearts of all of us. My falcon towered above yours in ambition then; nothing less than a mistress of rhetoric and belles letters tempted the magnificent swoop of my poetry and ambition; yours had a fierce and Byronic generality, which made it dangerous for the whole covey 155 of lesser birds. How many were you in love with, Jeremy? At least, how many were made goddesses by your poetry? “You decline,” under present circumstances matrimonial. Well, a man with a growing family, I suppose, owes something to appearances and to example. I have no such excuse to plead, and can be as open as the day.

I really was in love then, Jeremy. Don’t you think so? But I was as jealous as a Turk—a passion which you, from a lack of concentration, thought very unreasonable. It was, too, considering that it was engendered before I had ever spoken to the lady, and finally exploded very foolishly, and harmlessly, too, I believe, upon the head of an innocent old teacher of Latin Grammar, or something of that sort, old enough to be the lady’s grandfather, who would be looking over her album. I wrote my last piece of poetry after that, which did my business in that quarter, for the lady refused to see me or my poetry any more. The loss, I think, was hers in the long run, though I suffered with a heart-ache and prospective suicide for a month or two. I was very much like the poor man in the story book, however,

“For when I saw my eyes were out,

With all my might and main,

I jumped into another bush,

And scratched them in again.”

The process was a rough one, and left a scar behind. I never saw the lady but once afterward, and that was at Niblo’s. I confess to a heart-fluttering, Jeremy, and some of that Spanish fierceness for making declarations, which you used to laugh at; but fortune or fate denied me means and opportunity; when the Vaudeville was over she was led off by her party—and I lost her.

“I saw her depart as the crowd hurried on,

Like the moon down the ocean, the graceful was gone!

On my ear her adieu, with its dulcimer swell,

Like the gush of cool waters in melody fell.


“Starry stranger! so dazzlingly distant—unknown—

And observed in thy luminous transit alone;

By what fiat supreme must thy brilliancy quiver

O’er the depths of my darkened existence forever!”

But our old friend C——, he’s married now, and is the happy father of eight children, I believe. He always had an insane passion for crowds. Do you remember the night he escorted the whole boarding-school home with his umbrella; he always would, like the author of “Calavar,” have his umbrella with him—a green one—and this night the gods were propitious. It blew a hurricane, and the rain came pitching down in sheets, as if Niagara had attached a spout to the passing clouds. C—— plied between the concert-room and the boarding-school, with the regularity and precision of a Brooklyn ferry-boat, showing his regard for the fair. After having deposited the fifteenth damsel safely, he totally upset the propriety of an elderly lady who opened the door with a polite invitation for him to “walk in”—an open sesame worth a ducat—with the information that “he was afraid some more of the folks were without umbrellas, and he must see them home!” A spirit of self-denial and enlarged philanthropy worthy of a martyr.

Do you remember the exploits of S—— with those gay girls? He was a determined dandy and lady-killer, and resolved to take the whole school by storm, and to punish the refractory. But some how or other they wouldn’t be taken; so after firing into the flock a dozen times, with his most distinguished bow, and letting off a whole volley of passionate verses upon imprisoned damsels generally without execution—for no enamored Julia threw herself at his feet, or replied—he resolved to pick his bird. S—— had a cousin who visited a Miss T——, who was immured in that dungeon which frowned most terrifically, in S.’s mind, upon those within as well as those without; and he made, through this channel, her acquaintance. A walk to church in company with his cousin and Miss T—— perfected his little plot of taking the whole castle by this entrance; but a simple incident destroyed the forces of the enemy, and routed him, horse, foot, and dragoons. A violent storm came on while they were at church one Sunday evening, and the streets were flooded when they came out. The storm had passed, however, and a dull moon lent but a feeble light to the escort. S—— dropped his cousin at her door—it was the first chance he had, and starting on with Miss T——, opened the batteries of the sentimental upon his victim in most magnificent strength and style. As they crossed Canal street, S——, who had been carefully piloting the way, releasing the lady’s arm gently from his, and taking hold of the tips of those taper fingers with a grace that D’Orsey could not have excelled, requested her to “please step upon that stone,”—which the dull moon had made in the water—and, presto! the lady stepped into a pool which would have discolored the belt of a grenadier of six feet; and in his horror at his mistake, S—— missed his footing, and plunged in with a dive that would have gained him admirers in frogdom.

You remember the wit of Miss T——; she was out of the water almost before he was in it, and turning round with a gay laugh at the discomfited dandy, begged that “if his thoughts of suicide were confirmed, to try the river the next time, but she must decline being either the disconsolate mourner, or a party to the folly!” and with a light trip was off, up the steps, and had rung the bell before S—— could gasp an apology.

This, with most men, would have been a settler, but S——’s vanity was water and bullet-proof both. He dispatched the whole affair, to his own satisfaction, in a sonnet; and the next day, at two, strode past the school with the step of a conqueror, the mark of a score of quizzing-glasses and laughing faces. S—— bore the infliction this once with a nerve that would have taken any man to the cannon’s mouth. But he grew fiery and retaliatory under its repetition. “I will settle this business with a twenty-four pounder,” said he; and he did. The next day S—— begged the spy-glass of an old pilot, and walking calmly down with his dexter-eye on the enemy, surprised his forces by a cool, steady, deliberate gaze through his blunderbuss with glasses. The mistress ended the flirtation and supposed conquest by a threat, delicately conveyed, that “any future conduct of the kind would be intimated to the police.”

S—— determined to “die game,” and marched by with his Spanish mantle on each particular cold day, with the step of a grenadier; but fate, jealous of his valor, tripped him up one exceedingly wintry afternoon, when boys were experimenting with skates upon the side-walk. Poor S——, who had given his cloak an extra turn over his shoulders, fell at full length exactly opposite the window of the boarding-school, and floundered in his vain attempts to extricate himself, like a salmon thrown upon the land, his “Oakford” most ruinously crushed by a passing omnibus; and to crown his confusion, in the midst of a dozen windows suddenly thrown up, an Irish cabman hastened to his rescue, and having unrolled him and placed him on his feet, considerately asked, within hearing of two score of ears, “whether he had been long there?” The glory of the conqueror was gone!

“So fades, so languishes, grows dim, and dies,

All that this world is proud of.”

The bright faces, laughing eyes, and happy hearts of our youth, with its early friendships, have been replaced 156 with sadder views of life, and you and I, Jeremy, are older—the world would say, wiser—but are we happier, Jeremy, think you?

G. R. G.

Mrs. Davidson.—We present our reader this month with a well engraved portrait of Mrs. Davidson, the mother of the celebrated and talented girls Margaret and Lucretia Davidson, made immortal as well by their own genius as by the beautiful volumes of their works, edited by Washington Irving and Miss Sedgwick, and published by Lea & Blanchard in 1841. Lucretia was born in Plattsburg, New York, on the 27th of September, 1808, and died on the 27th of August, 1825, just one month before her 17th birth-day. Margaret was born at the same place, on the 26th of March, 1823, and died on the 25th of November, 1838, at the early age of fifteen years and eight months. The early fate and singular genius of these youthful poets occupied for so long a time the attention and sympathy of the literary world, that it is needless for us to say much here, but we cannot refrain from quoting two passages from a distinguished critic upon their works.

“The name of Lucretia Davidson is familiar to all readers of poetry. Dying at the early age of 17, she has been rendered famous not less, and certainly not more, by her own precocious genius than by three memorable biographies, one by President Morse of the American Society of Arts, one by Miss Sedgwick, and a third by Robert Southey. Mr. Irving had formed an acquaintance with some of her relatives, and thus, while in Europe, took great interest in all that was written or said of his young countrywomen. Upon his return to this country, he called upon Mrs. Davidson, and then, in 1833, first saw the subject of the memoir, a fairy-like child of eleven. Three years having again elapsed, the MSS., which formed the basis of his volume, were placed in his hands by Mr. Davidson, as all that remained of his daughter. Few books have interested us more profoundly. Yet the interest does not appertain solely to Margaret. In fact, the narrative, says Mr. Irving, ‘will be found almost as illustrative of the character of the mother as the child; they were singularly identified in taste, feeling and pursuits: tenderly entwined together by maternal and filial affection, they reflected an inexpressibly touching grace and interest upon each other by this holy relationship, and, to my mind, it would be marring one of the most beautiful and affecting groups in modern literature to sunder them.’ In these words the biographer conveys no more than a just idea of the loveliness of the picture here presented to view.”

“In the way of criticism upon these extraordinary compositions, Mr. Irving has attempted little. . . . In respect to a poem entitled “My Sister Lucretia,” he thus speaks, ‘We have said that the example of her sister Lucretia was incessantly before her, and no better proof can be given of it than the following lines, which breathe the heavenly aspirations of her pure young spirit, in strains quite unearthly. We may have read poetry more artificially perfect in its structure, but never any more truly divine in its inspiration.’”

“Lucretia Maria Davidson, the elder of the two sweet sisters, who have acquired so much fame prematurely, had not, like Margaret, an object of poetical emulation in her own family. In her genius, be it what it may, there is more of self-dependence—less of the imitative. Her mother’s generous romance of soul may have stimulated but did not instruct. Thus, although she has actually given less evidence of power than Margaret—less written proof—still its indication must be considered at higher value. Margaret, we think, has left the better poems—certainly the more precocious—while Lucretia evinces more unequivocally the soul of a poet.”

We had intended to have said more of the mother—since deceased—of these remarkable girls, but our space warns us, that in this number, it is impossible. Enough has been indicated above, to show her strong sympathy with her daughter’s tastes, and how much she aided in forming them.

The January Number.—We confess to a great degree of pride, from the reception of our January number, by the newspaper press all over the country, and from the regular subscribers to the work. It has been pronounced, indeed, in several influential quarters, “The best number of a monthly magazine ever issued in the language,” and this not alone from the number and beauty of the embellishments—every one of which imparted a value as a work of art to the number—but from the worth, variety and amount of literary matter. In issuing a double number to our readers, we were fully aware that we were repaying but a part of what we owe them, for the liberal encouragement extended to us for a period of ten years, without deviation or diminution; but we were scarcely prepared for the large increase to our list of new friends which, in two cities alone, extended to over three thousand new names.

From every part of the country each mail comes freighted with clubs from persons with whose subscriptions we have not heretofore been honored, and our old friends, with astonishing unanimity, continue to cling to “Graham as the best and only good Magazine” amidst the mass of periodicals which now make up in noise and promises, what they lack in merit and ability to perform. To say that we are not flattered by this mark of favor extended to us by the readers of this country would be useless, but so far from this fact lessening our exertions, it only spurs us on to new endeavors to maintain that ascendancy over all others which we have always held, by issuing a Magazine incomparably better than any that attempts to rival it.

Our February number, we think, will show no falling off in our exertions, and the two numbers of the volume are an earnest of what our readers may expect during the whole year of 1849. May it prove a prosperous and happy one to our subscribers, as it has opened auspiciously for ourselves.

A New Sea Story.—We are gratified to be able to announce a new Sea Story for the pages of Graham’s Magazine, by W. F. Lynch, of the navy, whose recent explorations of the Dead Sea and vicinity, have so much occupied the attention of the newspapers and scientific bodies generally. The story is written with marked ability, and will be quite an attraction in the coming numbers of Graham.

Our Premium Plate.—We shall forward promptly to clubs and subscribers entitled to our large premium plate, copies, carefully done up for preservation, as soon as the artist completes it. It will be a very beautiful parlor ornament when properly framed.

Our Fashion Plate for this month has been delayed by the ocean steamer, and as we issue this number early, we postpone it till next month.

Painted by Cook         Engd by Rawdon, Wright & Hatch


Mrs. M. M. Davidson

Engraved Expressly for Graham’s Magazine








No, I never, till life and its shadows shall end,

Can forget the sweet sound of the bells of Ostend!

The day set in darkness, the wind it blew loud,

And rung as it pass’d thro’ each


murmuring shroud.


My forehead was wet with the foam of the spray,

My heart sighed in secret for those far away;

When slowly the morning advanc’d from the east,

The toils and the noise of the tempest had ceased:

The peal from a land I ne’er saw seemed to say,

Let the stranger forget all his sorrow to-day.




Yet the short-lived emotion was mingled with pain—

I thought of those eyes I should ne’er see again;

I thought of the kiss, the last kiss which I gave,

And a tear of regret fell unseen on the wave;

I thought of the schemes fond affection had planned,

Of the trees, of the towers of my own native land;

But still the sweet sounds, as they swelled on the air

Seemed tidings of pleasure, though mournful to bear;

And I never, till life and its shadows shall end,

Can forget the sweet sound of the bells of Ostend.

Transcriber’s Notes:

For illustrations, some caption text may be missing or incomplete due to condition of the originals available for preparation of the ebook. In the story The Wager of Battle, the Chapter VI heading is missing due to being absent from the original publication. Hyphenation and archaic spellings have been retained. Punctuation has been corrected without note. Obvious typographical errors have been corrected as noted below.


page 90, leaves are sear, ==> leaves are sere,

page 93, to make their ==> to make to their

page 104, whispered a page ==> whispered to a page

page 106, cylinders and guaging ==> cylinders and gauging

page 107, for the denouément ==> for the dénouement

page 107, I glad ==> I am glad

page 110, from all wordly ==> from all worldly

page 111, none was politec ==> none was politic

page 111, of their Lupercalla ==> of their Lupercalia

page 113, the wordly advantages ==> the worldly advantages

page 113, Mendelsshon’s music ==> Mendelssohn’s music

page 114, Druid chorusses ==> Druid choruses

page 119, Greydon, then she ==> Greydon, than she

page 121, tonge of flame ==> tongue of flame

page 125, from a regime forcé ==> from a régime forcé

page 127, merchans of celebrity ==> merchants of celebrity

page 128, ask him them ==> ask him then

page 132, sod have been ==> sod had been

page 132, sear turf of ==> sere turf of

page 145, havn’t told us ==> haven’t told us

page 146, physican arrived ==> physician arrived

page 150, maiden-thought be- becomes ==> maiden-thought becomes

page 151, style and rythm ==> style and rhythm

page 152, invaluabte companion ==> invaluable companion

page 153, with the orginal ==> with the original

page 154, down and mak ==> down and make

page 155, was her’s ==> was hers

page 155, an open sessame ==> an open sesame

[The end of Graham's Magazine Vol XXXIV No. 2 February 1849 by George Rex Graham]