* A Distributed Proofreaders Canada eBook *

This ebook is made available at no cost and with very few restrictions. These restrictions apply only if (1) you make a change in the ebook (other than alteration for different display devices), or (2) you are making commercial use of the ebook. If either of these conditions applies, please contact a FP administrator before proceeding.

This work is in the Canadian public domain, but may be under copyright in some countries. If you live outside Canada, check your country's copyright laws. IF THE BOOK IS UNDER COPYRIGHT IN YOUR COUNTRY, DO NOT DOWNLOAD OR REDISTRIBUTE THIS FILE.

Title: Graham's Magazine Vol. 35 No. 2 August 1849

Date of first publication: 1849

Author: George Rex Graham

Date first posted: July 1, 2017

Date last updated: July 1, 2017

Faded Page eBook #20170663

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


Vol. XXXV.      AUGUST, 1849.      No. 2.

Table of Contents

Fiction, Literature and Articles

The Curtain Lifted
Indian Legend of the Star and Lily
Jasper St. Aubyn
Sketches of Life in Our Village
Mary Wilson
Olden Times
Two Hours of Doom
The Captive of York
A Memory
Wild-Birds of America
Editor’s Table
Review of New Books

Poetry, Music, and Fashion

Watouska: A Legend of the Oneidas
The Improvisatrice
The Eighteenth Sonnet of Petrarca
Faith’s Warning
Lament of the Gold-Digger
To Mary
Little Willie
Words of Waywardness
Translation of a Recently Discovered Fragment of a Poem by Sappho
Ermengarde’s Awakening
This World of Ours
My Spirit
Le Follet
Yes, Let Me Like a Soldier Fall

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



Vol. XXXV.     PHILADELPHIA, AUGUST, 1849.     No. 2.







The Deacon.

Everybody called Mr. Humphreys a good man. To have found any fault with the deacon would have been to impugn the church itself, whose most firm pillar he stood. No one stopped to analyze his goodness—it was enough that in all outward semblance, in the whole putting together of the outward man, there was a conformity of sanctity; that is, he read his Bible—held family prayers night and morning—preached long homilies to the young—gave in the cause of the heathen—and was, moreover, of a grave and solemn aspect, seldom given to the folly of laughter.

All this, and more did good Deacon Humphreys; and yet one thing he lacked, viz., the sweet spirit of charity.

I mean not that he oppressed the widow, or robbed the orphan of bread; no, not this, it was the cold unforgiving spirit with which he looked upon the errors of his fellow man—the iron hand with which he thrust far from him the offender, which betrayed the want of that charity “which rejoiceth not in iniquity, suffereth long, and is kind.”

He was also pertinaciously sectarian. No other path than the one in which he walked could lead to eternal life. No matter the sect, so that they differed from him, it was enough—they were outlawed from the gates of Heaven. Ah! had the deacon shared more the spirit of our blessed Saviour, in whose name he offered up his prayers, then, indeed, might he have been entitled to the Christian character he professed.

Mrs. Humphreys partook largely of her husband’s views. She, too, was irreproachable in her daily walks, and her household presented a rare combination of order and neatness. The six days work was done, and done faithfully, and the seventh cared for, ere the going down of the Saturday’s sun, which always left her house in order—her rooms newly swept and garnished—the stockings mended—the clean clothes laid out for the Sabbath wear—while in the kitchen pantry, a joint of cold meat, or a relay of pies, was provided, that no hand might labor for the creature comforts on the morrow. As the last rays of the sun disappeared from hill and valley, the doors of the house were closed—the blinds pulled down—the well-polished mahogany stand drawn from its upright position in the corner of the sitting-room, which it occupied from Monday morning until the coming of the Saturday night—the great family Bible placed thereon, while with countenances of corresponding gravity, and well-balanced spectacles, the deacon and his wife read from its holy pages.

Thus in all those outward observances of piety, whereon the great eyes of the great world are staring, I have shown that the deacon and his good wife might challenge the closest scrutiny. Nor would I be understood to detract aught from these observances, or throw down one stone from the altars of our Puritan fathers. We need all the legacy they left their children. The force of good example is as boundless as the tares of sin—let us relax nothing which may tend to check the evil growth—and who shall say that the upright walk of Deacon Humphreys was without a salutary influence.

But it is with the inner man we have to do. The fairest apples are sometimes defective at the core.



Grassmere and its Inhabitants.

Grassmere was a quiet out-of-the-way village, hugged in close by grand mountains, and watered by sparkling rivulets and cascades, which came leaping down the hillsides like frolicksome Naiads, and then with a murmur as sweet as the songs of childhood, ran off to play bo-peep with the blue heavens amid the deep clover-fields, or through banks sprinkled with nodding wild-flowers.

A tempting retreat was Grassmere to the weary man of business, whose days had been passed within the brick and mortar walks of life, and whom the fresh air, and the green grass, and the waving woods, were but as a page of delicious poetry snatched at idle hours. Free from the turmoil and vexations of the city, how pleasant to tread the down-hill of life, surrounded by such peaceful influences as smiled upon the inhabitants of Grassmere, and several beautiful cottages nestling in the valley, or dotting the hill-side, attested that some fortunate man of wealth had here cast loose the burthen of the day, to repose in the quiet of nature.

Although our story bears but slightly save upon three or four of the three thousand inhabitants of Grassmere, I will state that a variety of religious opinions had for several years been gradually creeping into this primitive town, and that where once a single church received the inhabitants within one faith, there were now four houses of worship, all embracing different tenets. But the deacon walked heavenward his own path, shaking his skirts free from all contamination with other sects, whom, indeed, he looked upon as little better than heathen.

The pastor of the church claiming so zealous a member, was a man eminent for his Christian benevolence. His was not the piety which exhausted itself in words—heart and soul did he labor to do his Master’s will, and far from embracing the rigid views of the worthy Deacon Humphreys, he wore the garb of charity for all, and in his great, good heart loved all.

He had one son, who, at the period from which my story dates, was pursuing his collegiate course at one of our most popular institutions, and in his own mind the deacon had determined that Hubert Fairlie should become the husband of his only daughter, Naomi. In another month Hubert was to return to pass his vacation at Grassmere, and Naomi looked forward to the meeting with unaffected pleasure. They had been playmates in childhood, companions in riper years; but love had nothing to do with their regard for each other, yet the deacon could not conceive how friendship alone should thus unite them. At any rate Naomi must be the wife of Hubert—that was as set as his Sunday face.

The deacon was a man well off in worldly matters. He owned the large, highly cultivated farm on which he lived, as also several snug houses within the village, which rented at good rates.

But the little cottage at Silver-Fall was untenanted. Through the inability of its former occupant to pay the rent, it had returned upon the hands of the deacon, and although one of the most delightful residences for miles around, had now been for several months without a tenant.

A charming spot was Silver-Fall, with its little dwelling half hidden by climbing roses and shadowy maples. Smooth as velvet was the lawn, with here and there a cluster of blue violets clinging timidly together, and hemmed by a silvery thread of bright laughing water, which, within a few rods of the cottage-door, suddenly leaped over a bed of rocks some twenty feet high, into the valley below. This gave it the name of Silver-Fall Cottage—all too enticing a spot it would seem to remain long unoccupied. Yet the snows of winter yielded to the gentle breath of spring, and the bright fruits of summer already decked the hedge-rows and the thicket, ere a tenant could be found, and then there came a letter to Mr. Humphreys from a widow lady living in a distant city, requiring the terms on which he would lease his pretty cottage.

They were favorable, it would seem, to her views, and in due time Mrs. Norton, her daughter Grace, and two female domestics, arrived at Silver-Fall.



One Fold of the Curtain drawn back.

A new comer in a country village is always sure to elicit more or less curiosity, and Mrs. Norton did not escape without her due share from the inhabitants of Grassmere. With telegraph speed it was found out that she was a lady between thirty and forty years of age, dressed in bombazine, and wore close mourning caps. Miss Norton was talked of as a slender, fair girl, with blue eyes, and long, flowing curls, and might be seventeen, perhaps twenty—of course, they could not be strictly accurate in this matter.

Bales of India matting were unrolled in the door-yard—crates of beautiful china unpacked in the piazza—sofas and chairs crept out from their rough traveling cases, displaying all the beauty of rosewood and damask, until finally by aid of all these means and appliances to boot, Mrs. Norton and her daughter were pronounced very genteel—but—

“But, I wonder what they are!” said Mrs. Humphreys to the deacon, as talking over these secular matters she handed him his second cup of coffee.

Not that the good lady had any doubt of their being bona fide flesh and blood; neither did she believe they were witches or fairies who had taken up their abode at Silver-Fall. “I wonder what they are!” must therefore be interpreted as “I wonder what church they attend,” or “what creed they profess.”

The deacon shook his head and looked solemn.

“It is to be hoped,” continued Mrs. Humphreys, complacently stirring the coffee, “that at her period of life Mrs. Norton may be a professor of some kind.”

The deacon dropped his knife and fork—he was shocked—astounded.

“I am surprised to hear you speak thus lightly, Mrs. Humphreys—a professor of some kind! Is it not better that she should yet rest in her sins, than to be walking in the footsteps of error—a professor of some kind! Wife—wife—you forget yourself!” exclaimed the deacon.

“I spoke thoughtlessly, I acknowledge,” answered Mrs. Humphreys, much confused by the stern rebuke of her husband. “I meant to say, I hoped she had found a pardon for her sins.”

“Have you forgotten that you are a parent?” continued the deacon, solemnly. “Can you suffer the ears of your daughter to drink in such poison! A professor of some kind! Naomi, my child,” placing his hand on the sunny head before him, “beware how you listen to such doctrine; there is but one true faith—there is but one way by which you can be saved. Go to your chamber, and pray you may not be led into error through your mother’s words of folly!”

But there were others at Grassmere most anxiously wondering, like good Mrs. Humphreys, “what they were,” ere they so far committed themselves as to call upon the strangers. Sunday, however, was close at hand; Mrs. Norton’s choice of a church was to determine them the choice of her acquaintance.

Does the reader think the inhabitants of Grassmere peculiar? I think not. There are very many just such people not a hundred rods from our own doors.

Unfortunately, on Sunday the rain poured down in torrents. Nothing less impervious than strong cowhide boots—India-rubber overcoats, and thick cotton umbrellas, could go to meeting, consequently, Mrs. Norton staid at home, and on Monday afternoon, after the washing was done, and the deacon had turned his well saturated hay, Mrs. Humphreys put on her best black silk gown and mantilla, her plain straw bonnet, with white trimmings, and walked over with her husband to Silver-Fall cottage. As the widow rented her house of them, they could not in decency, they reasoned, longer defer calling upon her.

A glance within the cottage would convince any one that Mrs. Norton and Grace were at least persons of refinement—for there is as much character displayed in the arrangement of a room as in the choice of a book.

Cream colored mattings, and window-curtains of transparent lace, relieved by hangings of pale sea-green silk, imparted a look of delicious coolness to the apartments. There was no display of gaudy furniture, as if a cabinet warehouse had been taken on speculation—yet there was enough for comfort and even elegance; nor was there an over exhibition of paintings—one of Cole’s beautiful landscapes, and a few other gems of native talent were all; nor were the tables freighted as the counter of a toy-shop; the only ornament of each was a beautiful vase of Bohemian glass, filled with fresh garden flowers, whose tasteful arrangement even fairy hands could not have rivaled.

The few moments they were awaiting the entrance of Mrs. Norton were employed by Mrs. Humphreys in taking a rapid survey of all these surroundings, the result of which was to impress her with a sort of awe for the mistress of this little realm.

“My stars!” said she, casting her eyes to the right and left, half rising from the luxurious couch to peep into one corner, and almost breaking her neck to dive into another, “my stars, deacon, if this don’t beat all I ever did see!”

But the deacon, with an air worthy of a funeral, shook his head, closed his eyes, and muttered,


The door opened, and Grace gliding in, sweetly apologized for her mother, whom a violent headache detained in her apartment.

“Well, I do wish I knew what they were!” again exclaimed Mrs. Humphreys, as she took the deacon’s arm and plodded thoughtfully homeward.

Then going to a dark cupboard under the stairs, she rummaged for some time among the jars and gallipots, and finally producing one marked “Raspberry Jam,” she told Naomi to put on her Sunday bonnet, and carry it to the cottage, and⁠—

“Naomi, you may just as well ask Grace Norton what meeting she goes to.”

Delighted to make the acquaintance of Grace, Naomi threw on her bonnet and tripped lightly to the cottage, thinking little, we fear, of her mother’s last charge. At any rate it was omitted, and so the night-cap of Mrs. Humphreys again threw its broad frilling over an unsatisfied brow.

In the morning the deacon received a very neat note from Mrs. Norton, requesting to see him up on business.

“And now, my dear sir,” said she, after the common courtesies of the day were passed, “I have taken the liberty to send for you to transact a little business for me. If not too great a tax upon your time, will you purchase a pew for me?”

The deacon grimly smiled, and rubbing his knee, replied,

“Why, yes, Mrs. Norton, I shall be glad to attend to the matter. True, it is a busy season with us farmers, but the Lord forbid I should therefore neglect his business.”

“Do you think you can procure me one?” asked Mrs. Norton.

“O, I reckon so, for I am certain there are several pews now to be let or sold either.”

“And what price, Mr. Humphreys?”

“Well, I guess about sixty dollars; and now I recollect, Squire Bryce wants to sell his—it is right alongside of mine, and I reckon my pew is as good for hearing the word as any in the meeting-house. I am glad, really I do rejoice to find you a true believer.”

“You mistake my church, I see,” said Mrs. Norton, smiling, “I belong to a different denomination from the one of which as I am aware you are a professor.”

“Then,” cried the deacon, rising hastily and making for the door, “excuse me—I—I know nothing of any other church or its pews. I cannot be the instrument of seating you where false doctrines are preached! I—good morning, ma’am.”

The widow sighed as the gate slammed after her visiter, but Grace burst into a merry fit of laughter.

“How ridiculous!” she exclaimed; “was there ever such absurdity!”

“Hush, hush my dear child,” said Mrs. Norton, “Mr. Humphreys is without doubt perfectly conscientious in this matter—we may pity, but not condemn such zeal in the cause of religion.”

“Do you call bigotry religion, mamma?” asked Grace.

“A person may be a very good Christian, Grace, and yet be very much of a bigot,” answered her mother. “That such a spirit as Mr. Humphreys has just now shown may often be productive of more evil than good, I allow. His aim is to do good, but he adopts the wrong measures.”

“Why, mamma, one would have judged from his manner that we were infidels!” said Grace.

“O no, my child, he did not really think that,” replied Mrs. Norton, smiling at her earnestness. “He only felt shocked at what he deems our error—for he sacredly believes there can be no safety in any other creed than his own. Without the charity therefore to think there may be good in all sects, and lacking the desire to study the subject, or rather so much wedded to his belief that he would deem it almost a sin to do so, like an unjust judge, he condemns without a hearing. There are too many such mistaken zealots in every creed of worship. O, my dear child,” continued Mrs. Norton, her fine eyes bathed in tears, “would that members of every sect might unite in love and charity to one another! They are all aiming alike to love and serve Christ, and yet take no heed to his commandment, ‘Love ye one another!’”

“Well, mamma, for the sake of his sweet daughter, Naomi, I can forgive the good deacon. I have never seen a more interesting face than hers, and her manners are as graceful and lady-like as if she had never seen the country,” said Grace.

“And most probably a great deal more so, my love,” replied Mrs. Norton, “for nature can add a grace which courts cannot give. But I agree with you in thinking Miss Humphreys interesting; she is, indeed, so, and if her countenance prove an index of her mind, I think you may promise yourself a pleasing companion.”

But the deacon, it seems, was of a different way of thinking, and no sooner did he enter under his own roof, place his oak stick in the corner, and hang up his hat on the peg behind the door, than going into the kitchen where the good wife was busily employed preparing the noonday meal, assisted by Naomi, he made known with serious countenance, that he had discovered what they were at Silver-Fall cottage!

Of course, Miss Norton was not such a companion as they would choose for Naomi. True, she was a pretty girl, and Mrs. Norton a lady of faultless manners; but then so much the more danger, and therefore Naomi, though not forbidden, was admonished to beware of their new acquaintances.



Love Passages.

The summer passed, and in the bright month of September, came Hubert Fairlie, to pass a few weeks beneath the glad roof of his parents, whose only and beloved child he was.

Their warm welcome given, the first visit of Hubert was to Naomi. They met as such young and ardent friends meet after an absence of months, and Naomi soon confided to him her regret that her parents would not allow her to cultivate the friendship of Grace Norton, whom she extolled in such warm and earnest language, that Hubert found his curiosity greatly excited to behold one calling forth such high eulogium from the gentle Naomi.

An evening walk was accordingly planned which would lead them near the cottage, hoping by that means to obtain a glimpse of its fair inmate. Fortune favored them. As they came within view of the cottage, a sweet voice was heard chanting the Evening Hymn to the Virgin, and Hubert and Naomi paused to listen to as heavenly sounds as ever floated on the calm twilight air. Then as the song concluded, Grace herself still sweeping her fairy fingers over the strings to a lively waltz, sprang out from the little arbor, and with her hair floating around her like stray sunbeams, her beautiful blue eyes lifted upward, her white arms embracing the guitar, and her graceful figure swaying to the gay measure like a bird upon the tree-top, tripped over the greensward.

Among other amusements which the deacon held in great abhorrence was dancing, and Naomi had been taught to look upon all such exhibitions as vain and sinful. Yet never, I may venture to say, did any pair of little feet so long to be set at liberty as did Naomi’s—pat—pat—pat-ing the gravel-walk where they stood, urging their young mistress to bound through the gate and trip it with those other little feet twinkling so fleetly to the merry music.

The cheeks of Grace rivaled the hue of June roses, as she suddenly encountered the gaze of a stranger; but seeing Naomi, she hastened to greet her, and thereby hide her embarrassment. Naomi introduced her companion, and then Grace invited them to walk in the garden, and look at her fine show of autumn flowers. Minutes flew imperceptibly, and ere they were aware, Hubert and Naomi found themselves seated in the tasteful parlor of the cottage listening to another sweet song from the lips of Grace.

As this is not precisely a love tale, I may as well admit at once, that Hubert became deeply enamored of the bewitching Grace, and from that evening was a frequent and not unwelcome visiter—a fact which was soon discovered by the deacon, for noting that Hubert came not so often as was his wont to the farm, he set about to find out what could have so suddenly turned the footsteps of the young man from his door.

Alas, for his hopes of a son-in-law in Hubert! He found those footsteps very closely on the track of as dainty a pair of slippers as ever graced the foot of a Cinderella.

Nothing could exceed his disappointment, save the pity he felt for his minister, whose son he considered rushing blindly into the snares of the Evil One. Nay, so far did he carry his pity as to warn Mr. Fairlie of the dereliction of Hubert. But when that worthy man reproved his uncharitableness, and acknowledged that he could hope for no greater earthly happiness for his son, than to see him the husband of so charming and amiable a girl as Grace Norton, the deacon was perfectly thunderstruck! It was dreadful—what would the world come to! In short almost believing in the apostacy of the minister himself, the deacon went home groaning in spirit, as much perhaps for the frustration of his own schemes, as for the “falling off,” as he termed it of the reverend clergyman!

The swift term of vacation expired, and Hubert returned to college. His collegiate course would end with the next term, and then it was his wish to commence the study of the law. Mr. Fairlie was, perhaps, somewhat disappointed that his son did not adopt his own sacred profession; but he was a man of too much sense to force the decision of Hubert or thwart his wishes. He hoped to see him a good man whatever might be his calling; and if ever youth gave promise to make glad the heart of a parent, that youth was Hubert Fairlie.

The intercourse between Grace and Naomi from this time almost wholly ceased, much to the regret of both. Yet such were the orders of Deacon Humphreys, whose good-will toward the widow and her daughter was by no means strengthened by the events of the last four weeks.



The Practical and Theoretical Christian.

“Why what have you done with Nelly to-day?” asked Mrs. Humphreys, of her washerwoman, who came every Monday morning, regularly attended by a little ragged, half-starved girl of four years old, whose province it was to pick up the clothes-pins, drive the hens off the bleach, and keep the kittens from scalding their frisky tails—receiving for her reward a thin slice of bread and butter, or maybe, if all things went right, and no thunder-squalls brewed, or sudden hurricanes swept over the clothes-fold, a piece of gingerbread or a cookey. “What, I say, have you done with Nelly?”

“O, ma’am, she has gone to school—only think of it, my poor little Nelly has gone to school! It does seem,” continued Mrs. White, resting her arms on the tub, and holding suspended by her two hands a well-patched shirt of the deacon’s, “it does seem as if the Lord had sent that Mrs. Norton here to be a blessing to the poor!”

“Humph!” ejaculated Mrs. Humphreys, spitefully rattling the dishes.

“Only think,” continued Mrs. White, “she has given up one whole room in her house to Miss Grace, who has been round and got all the children that can’t go to school because their parents are too poor to send them, and just teaches them herself for nothing! God bless her, I say!” exclaimed the washerwoman, strenuously, her tears mingling with the soap-suds into which she now plunged her two arms so vigorously as to dash the creaming foam to the ceiling.

Mrs. Humphreys was at once surprised and angry. She could not conceive why a lady like Mrs. Norton should do such a thing as to keep a ragged school, and that, too, without pay or profit. She had forgotten the words of our blessed Lord, “Whoso shall receive one such little child in my name, receiveth me,” or, “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these, ye have done it unto me.” Charity alone, she argued in her selfish nature, could not have influenced Mrs. Norton to put herself to so much trouble for a troop of noisy, dirty, half-clothed children! No, there must be some deeper motive—some sectarian object, perhaps, to be gained; and, impressed with this idea, she said tartly,

“I think it is a pretty piece of presumption in Mrs. Norton to come here and set herself up in this way, telling us as it were of our duty. She is a stranger, and what business is it of hers, I should like to know, whether the children go to school or not!”

“O, Mrs. Humphreys, indeed, I think the spirit of the Lord guides her!” said Mrs. White. “Miss Grace came and asked me so humbly like, if I would let her teach my Nelly, and then kissed the little fatherless child so, so—that—that—O, I could have worshiped her!” and fresh tears streamed down the cheeks of the washerwoman.

“Worship a fiddle-stick!” exclaimed Mrs. Humphreys, out of all patience, “I know what she wants—an artful creature; yes, she wants to make Nelly go to her meeting!”

Poor Mrs. White could not help smiling at the idea of attempting to form the religious creed of a child scarce four years old.

“Well, if she will only make her as good as she is, I don’t care!” she answered, “for the Bible says, ‘By their fruits ye shall know them!’”

Mrs. Humphreys was more and more shocked at this. She whispered it to Mrs. Smith, who whispered it to Mrs. Jones, who told Mrs. Brown, who told all the society, that the Nortons were wicked, designing people, come into the village to stir up schism in the church! Yet all sensible persons applauded the good deed of the widow, and cheerfully aided her efforts. The little school prospered even more than she had dared to hope; the children were cheerful and happy, and those whose parents could not afford them decent clothing, were generously supplied by Mrs. Norton—and many a heart blessed the hour which brought her among them.

As the thunder which suddenly rends the heavens, when not a cloud on the blue expanse has heralded the coming storm, was the calamity which now as suddenly burst over the head of Mrs. Norton.

She retired at night to her peaceful slumbers, supposing herself the mistress of thousands. With the early dawn there came letters to the cottage, telling her that all her worldly possessions were swept from her. The man to whose care her fortune was entrusted, had basely defrauded her of every cent, and now a bankrupt, had fled to a foreign land.

The stroke was a severe one. She must have been divine to have resisted the first shock which the tidings caused her. But that over, like a brave and noble spirit she rose to meet it. Her treasures were not all of earth—in heaven her hopes were garnered; and, although henceforth her path in life might be in rougher spots, and through darker scenes than it had yet traversed, to that heaven she trusted to arrive at last.

It happened, unfortunately, that the half-yearly rent of the cottage became due that very week; and Mrs. Norton, thus suddenly deprived of her expected funds, had no means to meet it. Where should she raise two hundred dollars! Her courage, however, rose with her trials. A little time to look into her affairs—a little time to form her plans for the future, and she doubted not she should be able to liquidate the debt. Unused to asking favors, she yet courageously went to Mr. Humphreys, and stating candidly her inability to meet the rent, requested a few weeks indulgence.

The deacon was not caught napping. Evil news always travels with seven-league boots—and long ere Mrs. Norton knocked at the door of the farm-house, it was known throughout the village that her fortune was gone.

Now the deacon, good man that he was, was “given to idols,” and Mammon was one. Moreover, he owed the widow a grudge, as we already know, and the old leaven of sin was at work beneath the crust of piety.

He was accordingly well prepared to receive her. And sorry, very sorry was the worthy deacon, but he had just then a most pressing necessity for the rent—he really must have it, if not in cash, perhaps Mrs. Norton might have some plate to dispose of; he would be happy to oblige her in that way, for the Lord forbid he should deal hard with any one—but, the amount must be paid when due. Wait he could not—and if the rent was not forthcoming on the day stipulated in the contract—why—why—he was very sorry—but he should be obliged to take other measures, that was all!

Mrs. Norton soiled not her lips by making any reply to this Christian Shylock—no expostulation or entreaty—but coldly bowing, she took her leave.

As soon as she reached home she sent for a silver-smith, brought out her valuable tea-set—doubly so from having been the marriage gift of her father, requested its appraisal, and then duly attested as to its weight and purity, it was forwarded to the clutches of the deacon.

Mrs. Norton met with a great deal of sympathy in her misfortunes. During the few months she had resided among them, the villagers had all learned to love and respect her. Even the poor came from their humble homes, and with looks of sympathy and out-stretched hands tendered their offerings—their hard-earned wages to the kind lady who had taught their little ones; they would work for her—they would do any thing to serve her. With a sweet smile Mrs. Norton put back their grateful gifts, and thanked them in gentle tones for their love—to her a far more acceptable boon than gold could buy.

Again Silver-Fall cottage fell back on the hands of its owner.

Dismissing her attendants, Mrs. Norton took a smaller and cheaper house. Her choice and beautiful furniture she sold, only retaining sufficient to render her now humble residence comfortable. The avails of the sale amounted to several hundred dollars—enough at any rate, she deemed, for present necessities, while she trusted in the meantime to find some means of subsistence by which she and Grace might support themselves.

What more noble spectacle, than an elegant, refined woman thus meeting, uncomplaining and cheerfully, the storm of adversity.

And Grace, too—sweet Grace—sang like a skylark, and made her little white hands wonderfully busy in household matters. Hubert Fairlie was yet absent, though his long and frequent letters brought joy to the heart of his beloved.

And had Naomi forgotten her friend in this season of trial! Not so; yet forbidden as we have seen from the society of Grace, all she could do was to sympathize deeply in spirit, happy when a chance opportunity brought them together; and those meetings although rare, only served to strengthen the friendship which united these two lovely girls.



The Pestilence. The Curtain wholly lifted.

It was now the middle of October.

“Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light, and the landscape

Lay as if new created, in all the freshness of childhood:

                All sounds were in harmony blended.

Voices of children at play—the crowing of cocks in the farm-yard,

Whirr of wings in the drowsy air, and the cooing of pigeons,

All were subdued and low as the murmurs of love.”

When suddenly the Angel of Death folded his dark wings, and sat brooding over the peaceful, pleasant village of Grassmere.

A terrible and malignant fever swept through the town, spreading from house to house, like the fire which consumes alike the dry grass and the bright, fresh flowers of the prairies. Old and young, husband, wife and child, were alike brought low. There were not left in all the village those able to attend upon the sick. From the churches solemnly tolled the funeral bells, as one by one, youth and age, blooming childhood and lovely infancy, were borne to the grave-yard—no longer solitary—for the foot of the mourner pressed heavily over its grass-grown paths.

Still the contagion raged, until the selfishness of poor human nature triumphed over the promptings of kindness and charity. People grew jealous of each other; neighbor shunned neighbor;

“Silence reigned in the streets—

Rose no smoke from the roofs—gleamed no lights from the windows.”

save the dim midnight lamp which from almost every house betokened the plague within.

None had shut themselves up closer from fear of infection than Deacon Humphreys. His gates grew rusty, and the grass sprang up in the paths about his dwelling. And yet the Destroyer found him out, and like a hound long scenting its prey, sprang upon the household with terrible violence.

First the pure and gentle Naomi sank beneath the stroke, and ere the setting of the same day’s sun, Mrs. Humphreys herself was brought nigh the grave.

Like one demented, pale with agony and terror, the deacon rushed forth into the deserted streets to seek for aid. His dear ones—his wife and child were perhaps dying; where, where should he look for relief—where find some kind hand to administer to their necessities.

At every house he learned a tale of wo equal to his own. Some wept while they told of dear ones now languishing upon the bed of pain, or bade him look upon the marble brow of their dead. Others grown callous, and worn-out with sorrow and fatigue, refused all aid, while some, through excess of fear, hurriedly closed their doors against him.

Thus he reached the end of the village, and then the small, neat cottage of Mrs. Norton met his view, nestling down amid the overshadowing branches of two venerable elm. From the day he had almost thrust her from his gate, with cold looks and unflinching extortion, Mrs. Norton and the deacon had not met, and now the time had come when he was about to ask from her a favor upon which perhaps his whole earthly happiness might rest—a favor from her, whom in his strength and her dependence he had scorned. Would she grant it? He hesitated; would she not rather, rejoicing in her power now, revenge the slights he felt he had so often and so undeservedly cast upon her. But he remembered the sweet, calm look which beamed from her eyes, and his courage grew with the thought.

Putting away the luxuriant creeper which wound itself from the still green turf to the roof of the cottage, hanging in graceful festoons, and tinged with the brilliant dyes of autumn, seemed like wreaths of magnificent flowers thus suspended, the deacon knocked hesitatingly at the door.

It opened, and Mrs. Norton stood before him, pale with watching—for, like an angel of mercy had she passed from house to house, since the first breaking out of the scourge. In faltering accents he told his errand; and, O, how like a dagger did it pierce his heart, when, with a countenance beaming with pity and kindness, and speaking words of comfort, the widow put on her bonnet and followed him with fleet footsteps to his stricken home.

All night, like a ministering angel, did she pass from one sick couch to the other, tenderly soothing the ravings of fever, moistening their parched lips with cool, refreshing drinks, fanning their fevered brows, and smoothing the couch made uneasy by their restless motions.

Unable to bear the scene, the deacon betook him in his hour of sorrow to his closet, where all through the dreary watches of the night he prayed this cup of affliction might pass from him. His heart was subdued. He saw that like the proud Pharisee he had exalted himself, thanking God he was not as other men.

At early dawn came Grace also to inquire after her suffering Naomi, and finding her so very ill, earnestly besought her mother that she might be allowed to share the task of nursing her. Mrs. Norton had no fears for herself, yet when she looked at her only and beautiful child, she trembled; but her eyes fell upon the bed where poor Naomi lay moaning in all the delirium of high fever, and her heart reproached her for her momentary selfishness. Removing the bonnet of Grace, she tenderly kissed her pure brow, and then kneeling down, with folded hands she prayed, “Thy will, O Lord, not mine be done! Take her in thy holy keeping, and do with her as thou seest best!”

From that day Grace left not the bedside of her friend.

On the third day Mrs. Humphreys died. Her last sigh was breathed out on the bosom of the woman whom she had taught her daughter to shun. For many days it seemed as if Death would claim another victim; yet God mercifully spared Naomi to her bereaved father; very slowly she recovered, but neither Mrs. Norton nor Grace left her until she was able to quit her bed.

With the death of Mrs. Humphreys, the pestilence staid its ravages, while, as a winding-sheet, the snows of winter now enshrouded the fresh-turned clods in the late busy grave-yard.

The eyes of Deacon Humphreys were opened. He became an altered man. He saw how mistaken had been his views, and that it is not the profession of any sect or creed which makes the true Christian, and that if all are alike sincere in love to God, all may be alike received.

I have said this was no love tale, therefore, by merely stating that in the course of a twelvemonth Hubert Fairlie and Grace were united, I close my simple story.






Away, in a forest’s gloom,

  Where the shadowy branches wave

O’er a rude and moss-grown tomb,

  Is an Indian maiden’s grave:

None knoweth that music-haunted spot⁠—

Save a far-off one, who forgets it not.


He dreams of that silent shore⁠—

  ’Tis a holy spot to him,

A solemn stillness broodeth o’er

  Those forest-aisles so dim;

Bird-music, and wave-melody,

Blend with the murmurings of the bee.


He knows when the wild-rose showers

  Its blossoms o’er her breast;

When the summer-winds, ’mid flowers,

  Whisper above her rest:

And he deems he hears, on his far-off shore,

The music of the cataract’s roar

  From that Island of the Blest!


She passed from earth away⁠—

  The young, the beautiful,

In the long dreamy day

  When golden shadows fell

O’er wave and vine, and moons had sped,

Yet there, while that brief season fled,

  He’d kept Love’s vigil well.


He comes, that warrior-chief,

  Once more, in the pale moon’s wane,

When the dews weep o’er each leaf,

  To that haunted spot again⁠—

But morn with its glorious beauty woke

Him not—the warrior’s heart had broke.





In the wigwam of the Indian during the evenings of spring, that season when nature, loosed from the bondage of winter, awakes to new life, and begins to deck itself with beauties, the old sage gathers around him the young men of the tribe, and relates the stories of days long since departed.

I have seen these youths sit in breathless silence, listening to the old man’s narrative. Now and then the tear-drops would course down their cheeks, and fall to the ground, witnesses of the interest they felt in the words of their teacher.

To induce the sire to narrate a tradition, the Indian boys would contrive some ingenious plan by which to get some tobacco, which, when offered with a request for a story, would be sure of a favorable answer. Frequently it happens that from sunset to its rise these clubs are entertained, and they do not separate till daylight calls them to the chase.

One of the most interesting traditionary stories I ever heard related, was told by an elderly Indian, one evening in spring. The winter was just leaving, the snow and ice were fast disappearing, and the streams were swollen with the unusual quantity of water from the mountains.

“There was once a time,” said he, “when this world was filled with happy people, when all nations were as one, and the crimson tide of war had not begun to roll. Plenty of game were in the forests and on the plains. None were in want, for a full supply was at hand. Sickness was unknown. The beasts of the field were tame, and came and went at the bidding of man. One unending spring gave no place for winter, for its cold blasts or its chills. Every tree and bush yielded fruit. Flowers carpeted the earth; the air was filled with their fragrance, and redolent with the songs of myriad warblers that flew from branch to branch, fearing none, for there were none to harm them. There were birds then of more beautiful plumage than now.

“It was then, when earth was a paradise, and man worthy to be its possessor, that Indians were the lone inhabitants of the American wilderness. They numbered millions, and living as nature designed them to live, enjoyed its many blessings. Instead of amusement in close rooms the sports of the fields were theirs.

“At night they met on the wide, green fields. They watched the stars; they loved to gaze at them, for they believed them to be the residences of the good who had been taken home by the Great Spirit. One night they saw one star that shone brighter than all others. Its location was far away in the south, near a mountain peak. For many nights it was seen, till at length it was doubted by many that this star was as far off in the southern skies as it seemed to be. This doubt led to an examination, which proved the star to be only a short distance, and near the tops of some trees. A number of warriors were deputed to go and see what it was. They went and returned, saying that it appeared strange and somewhat like a bird. A council of the wise men was called to inquire into and, if possible, ascertain the meaning of the phenomenon.

“They feared that it was an omen of some disaster. Some thought it a precursor of good, others of evil. Some supposed it to be the star spoken of by their forefathers, as a forerunner of a dreadful war.

“One moon had nearly gone by, and yet the mystery remained unsolved.

“One night a young warrior had a dream, in which a beautiful maiden came and stood at his side, and thus addressed him:

“‘Young brave! charmed with the land of thy forefathers, its flowers, its birds, its rivers, its beautiful lakes and its mountains clothed with green, I have left my sister in yonder world to dwell among you.

“‘Young brave! ask your wise and your great men where I can live and see the happy race continually; ask them what form I shall assume, in order to be loved and cherished among the people.’

“Thus discoursed the bright stranger. The young man awoke. On stepping out of his lodge, he saw the star yet blazing in its accustomed place.

“At early dawn the chief’s crier was sent round the camp to call every warrior to the Council Lodge. When they had met, the young warrior related his dream. They concluded that the star they had seen in the south had fallen in love with mankind and that it was desirous to dwell with them.

“The next night five tall, noble-looking adventurous braves were sent to welcome the stranger to earth.

“They went and presenting to it a pipe of peace, filled with sweet-scented herbs, were rejoiced to find that it took it from them. As they returned to the village, the star, with expanded wings followed, and hovered over their homes till the dawn of day.

“Again it came to the young man in a dream and desired to know where it should live, and what form it should take. Places were named. On the tops of giant trees or in flowers. At length it was told to choose a place itself—and it did so. At first it dwelt in the wild rose of the mountains, but there it was so buried it could not be seen. It went to the prairie, but it feared the hoof of the buffaloe. It next went to the rocky cliff, but it was there so high that the children, whom it loved most, could not see it.

“‘I know where I shall live,’ said the bright fugitive, ‘where I can see the gliding canoe of the race I most admire. Children, yes, they shall be my playmates, and I will kiss their brows when they slumber at the side of the cool lakes. The nations shall love me wherever I am.’

“These words having been uttered, she alighted on the waters where she saw herself reflected.

“The next morning thousands of white flowers were seen on the surface of all the lakes and the Indians gave them this name; Wah-be-gwon-nee—(White Lily.)

“Now,” continued the old man, “this star lived in the southern skies. Its brethren can be seen far off in the cold north, hunting the great bear, while its sisters watch her in the east and west.

“Children, when you see the lily on the waters, take it in your hands and hold it to the skies, that it may be happy on earth, as its two sisters (the morning and evening stars) are happy in heaven.”

While tears fell fast from the eyes of all, the old man lay him down and was soon silent in sleep.

Since then I have often plucked the white lily and garlanded around my head; have dipped it in its watery bed, but never have I seen it without remembering the Legend of the Descending Star.






Go bear the voiceless harp away!

  Its latest note is spoken,

And like the heart that beats within,

  Its last frail chord is broken.


This soul of mine was never made

  For glad or peaceful life,

But cast in rude, imperfect mould,

  For bitterness and strife.


I never was a careless child,

  For in my early years

The founts within were gathering,

  Of anguish and of tears:


And when I looked upon the stars

  In all their golden sheen,

The presage of a broken heart—

  It always came between.


And then the Voice of Song awoke

  Within my wayward soul,

And bade the wearing tide of thought

  Forever o’er it roll.


And dreams of words that should go forth

  To bless and elevate,

Ambition’s charmed and serpent lure,

  The passion to create;


Were mingled in my spirit’s depths,

  Till with displacing power

Came Love with gorgeous diadem,

  The phantom of an hour!


And soon the mockeries of Hope

  Fled smiling from my breast,

And left a dark and fearful curse,

  The cravings of unrest.


And Life became a weary load,

  And Nature’s face a pall,

And each red drop that passed my heart

  Was turned to seething gall.


From day to day the lyre within

  Waxed passionate and frail;

It trembled at the zephyr’s breath,

  How could it brook the gale?


Now Death has o’er my pillow bent,

  I’ve seen his glancing eye,

And watched the silvery gleaming of

  His pinion passing by.


Go bring me back my harp again!

  I feel a strength for prayer,

And o’er the shattered chords within

  Creeps an unearthly air.


Go bring me back my harp again,

  I may not now restore

The sounding strings I loved so well,

  Or tune it as before;


But I would lay my hand upon

  The trembling chords and riven;

I feel mine own are healing fast

  Beneath the eye of Heaven.





Had I but waited patient in the cell

  Where great Apollo erst became divine,

  One bard might call himself a Florentine,

Like those who once in other lands did dwell.

But here the holy ichor doth not swell,

  And fate hath willed another lot be mine.

  ’Tis meet that I relinquish high design

And drink the waters of life’s turbid well.

  Sear are the olive branches now, the stream

    Near which they grew and looked toward the sky

      Hath sunken deep beneath the rock again.

  Fate or my fault hath aye dispelled the dream

    That made me fix my early hopes so high,

      Unless God will their height I should attain.






(Continued from page 15.)


The Wakening.

He saw her, at a nearer view,

A spirit, yet a woman too.


When Jasper St. Aubyn opened his eyes, dim with the struggle of returning consciousness and life, they met a pair of eyes fixed with an expression of the most earnest anxiety on his own—a pair of eyes, the loveliest into which he ever had yet gazed, large, dark, unfathomably deep, and soft withal and tender, as the day-dream of a love-sick poet. He could not mark their color; he scarce knew whether they were mortal eyes, whether they were realities at all, so sickly did his brain reel, and so confused and wandering were his fancies.

Then a sweet low voice fell upon his ear, in tones the gentlest, yet the gladdest, that ever he had heard, exclaiming⁠—

“Oh! father, father, he lives—he is saved!”

But he heard, saw, no more; for again he relapsed into unconsciousness, and felt nothing further, until he became sensible of a balmy coolness on his brow, a pleasant flavor on his parched lips, and a kindly glow creeping as it were through all his limbs, and gradually expanding into life.

Again his eyes were unclosed, and again they met the earnest, hopeful gaze of those other eyes, which he now might perceive belonging to a face so exquisite, and a form so lovely, as to be worthy of those great glorious wells of lustrous tenderness.

It was a young girl who bent over him, perhaps a few months older than himself, so beautiful that had she appeared suddenly, even in her simple garb, which seemed to announce her but one degree above the peasants of the neighborhood, in the midst of the noblest and most aristocratical assembly, she would have become on the instant the cynosure of all eyes, and the magnet of all hearts.

Of that age when the heart, yet unsunned by passion, and unused to strong emotion, thrills sensibly to every feeling awakened for the first time within it, and bounds at every appeal to its sympathies; when the ingenuous countenance, unhardened by the sad knowledge of the world, and untaught to conceal one emotion, reflects like a perfect mirror every gleam of sunshine that illuminates, every passing cloud that over-shadows its pure and spotless surface, the maiden sought not to hide her delight, as she witnessed the hue of life return to his pale cheeks, and the spark of intelligence relume his handsome features.

A bright mirthful glance, which told how radiant they might be in moments of unmingled bliss, laughed for an instant in those deep blue eyes, and a soft, sunny smile played over her warm lips; but the next minute, she dropped the young man’s hand, which she had been chafing between both her own, buried her face in her palms, and wept those sweet and happy tears which flow only from innocent hearts, at the call of gratitude and sympathy.

“Bless God, young sir,” said a deep, solemn voice at the other side of the bed on which he was lying, “that your life is spared. May it be unto good ends! Yours was a daring venture, and for a trivial object against which to stake an immortal soul. But, thanks to Him! you are preserved, snatched as it were from the gates of death; and, though you feel faint now, I doubt not, and your soul trembles as if on the verge of another world, you will be well anon, and in a little while as strong as ever in that youthful strength on which you have so prided you. Drink this, and sleep awhile, and you shall wake refreshed, and as a new man, from the dreamless slumber which the draught shall give you. And you, silly child,” he continued, turning toward the lovely girl, who had sunk forward on the bed, so that her fair tresses rested on the same pillow which supported Jasper’s head, with the big tears trickling silently between her slender fingers, “dry up your tears; for the youth shall live, and not die.”

The boy’s eyes had turned immediately to the sound of the speaker’s accents, and in his weak state remained fixed on his face so long as the sound continued, although his senses followed the meaning but imperfectly.

It was a tall, venerable looking old man who spoke, with long locks, as white as snow, falling down over the straight cut collar of his plain black doublet, and an expression of the highest intellect, combined with something which was not melancholy, much less sadness, but which told volumes of hardships borne, and sorrows endured, the fruits of which were piety, and gentleness, and that wisdom which cometh not of this world.

He smiled thoughtfully, as he saw that his words were hardly comprehended, and his mild glance wandered from the pale face of the handsome boy to the fair head of the young girl bending over him, like a white lily overcharged with rain.

“Poor things,” he whispered softly, as if speaking to himself, “to both it is the first experience of the mixed pain and pleasure of this world’s daily trials. God save them scathless to the end!”

Then, recovering himself, as if by a little effort, from his brief fit of musing, he held forth a large glass goblet, which was in his right hand, full of some bright ruby-colored liquid, to the lips of Jasper, saying—

“Drink, youth, it will give thee strength. Drink, and fear nothing.”

The young man grasped the bright bowl with both hands, but even then he had lacked strength to guide it to his lips, had not his host still supported it.

The flavor was agreeable, and the coolness of the draught was so delicious to the feverish palate and parched tongue of Jasper, that he drained it to the very bottom, and then, as if exhausted by the effort, relaxed his hold, and sunk back on his pillow in a state of conscious languor, exquisitely soft and entrancing.

More and more that voluptuous dream-like trance overcame him, and though his eyes were still open he saw not the things that were around him, but a multitude of radiant and lovely visions, which came and went, and returned again, in mystic evolutions.

With a last effort of his failing senses, half conscious of the interest which she took in him, yet wholly ignorant who or what was that gentle she, he stretched out his hand and mastered one of hers with gentle violence, and holding it imprisoned in his burning fingers, closed his swimming eyes, and sunk into a deep and dreamless sleep.

The old man, who had watched every symptom that appeared in succession on his expressive face, saw that the potion had taken the desired effect, and drawing a short sigh, which seemed to indicate a sense of relief from apprehension, looked toward the maiden, and addressed her in a low voice, not so much from fear of wakening the sleeper, as that the voice of affection is ever low and gentle.

“He sleeps, Theresa, and will sleep until the sun has sunk far toward the west, and then he will waken restored to all his youthful power and spirits. Come, my child, we may leave him to his slumbers, he shall no longer need a watcher. I will go to my study, and would have you turn to your household duties. Scenes such as this which you have passed will call up soft and pitiful fancies in the mind, but it behooves us not overmuch to yield to them. This life has too much of stern and dark reality, that we should give the reins to truant imagination. Come, Theresa.”

The young girl raised her head from the pillows, and shook away the long fair curls from her smooth forehead. Her tears had ceased to flow, and there was a smile on her lip, as she replied, pointing to her hand which he held fast grasped, in his unconscious slumber.

“See, father, I am a prisoner. I fear me I cannot withdraw my hand without arousing him.”

“Do not so, then, Theresa; to arouse him now, ere the effects of the potion have passed away, would be dangerous, might be fatal. Perchance, however, he will release you when he sleeps quite soundly. If he do so, I pray you, come to me. Meantime, I leave you to your own good thoughts, my own little girl.”

And with the words, he leaned across the narrow bed, over the form of the sleeping youth, and kissed her fair white brow.

“Bless thee, my gentle child. May God in his goodness bless and be about thee.”

“Amen! dear father,” said the little girl, as he ended; and in her turn she pressed her soft and balmy lips to his withered cheek.

A tear, rare visitant, rose all unbidden to the parent’s eye as he turned to leave her, but ere he reached the door her low tones arrested him, and he came back to her.

“Will you not put my books within reach of me, dear father?” she said. “I cannot work, since the poor youth has made my left hand his sure captive, but I would not be altogether idle, and I can read while I watch him. Pardon my troubling you, who should wait on you, not be waited on.”

“And do you not wait on me ever, and most neat-handedly, dear child?” returned her father, moving toward a small round table, on which were scattered a few books, and many implements of feminine industry. “Which of these will you have, Theresa?”

“All of them, if you please, dear father. The table is not heavy, for I can carry it about where I will myself, and if you will lift it to me, I can help myself, and cull the gems of each in turn. I am a poor student, I fear, and love better, like a little bee, to flit from flower to flower, drinking from every chalice its particular honey, than to sit down, like the sloth, and surfeit me on one tree, how green soever.”

“There is but little industry, I am afraid, Theresa, if there be little sloth in your mode of reading. Such desultory studies are wont to leave small traces on the memory. I doubt me much if you long keep these gems you speak of, which you cull so lightly.”

“Oh! but you are mistaken, father dear, for all you are so wise,” she replied, laughing softly. “Every thing grand or noble, of which I read, every thing high or holy, finds a sort of echo in my little heart, and lies there forever. Your grave, heavy, moral teachings speak to my reason, it is true, but when I read of brave deeds done, of noble self-sacrifices made, of great sufferings endured, in high causes, those things teach my heart, those things speak to my soul, father. Then I reason no longer, but feel—feel how much virtue there is, after all, and generosity, and nobleness, and charity, and love, in poor frail human nature. Then I learn, not to judge mildly of myself, nor harshly of my brothers. Then I feel happy, father, yet in my happiness I wish to weep. For I think noble sentiments and generous emotions sooner bring tears to the eye than mere pity, or mere sorrow.”

And, even as she spoke, her own bright orbs were suffused with drops, like dew in the violet’s cups, and she shook her head with its profusion of long fair ringlets archly, as if she would have made light of her own sentiment, and gazed up into his face with a tearful smile.

“You are a good child, Theresa, and good children are very dear to the Lord,” said the old man. “But of a truth I would I could see you more practically minded; less given to these singular romantic dreamings. I say not that they are hurtful, or unwise, or untrue, but in a mere child, as you are, Theresa, they are strange and out of place, if not unnatural. I would I could see you more merry, my little girl, and more given to the company of your equals in age, even if I were to be loser thereby of something of your gentle company. But you love not, I think, the young girls of the village.”

“Oh! yes, I love them—I love them dearly, father. I would do any thing for any one of them; I would give up any thing I have got to make them happy. Oh yes, I love Anna Harlande, and Rose Merrivale, and Mary Mitford, dearly, but—but⁠—”

“But you love not their company, you would say, would you not, my child?”

“That is not what I was about to say; but I know not how it is, their merriment is so loud, and their glee so very joyous, that it seems to me that I cannot sympathize with them in their joy, as I can in their sorrow; and they view things with eyes so different from mine, and laugh at thoughts that go nigh to make me weep, and see or feel so little of the loveliness of Nature, and care so little for what I care most of all, soft, sad poetry, or heart-stirring romance, or inspired music, that when I am among them, I do almost long to be away from them all, in the calm of this pleasant chamber, or in the fragrance of my bower beside the stream. And I do feel my spirit jangled and perplexed by their light-hearted, thoughtless mirth, as one feels at hearing a false note struck in the midst of a sweet symphony. What is this? what means this, my father?”

“It is a gift, Theresa,” replied the old man, half mournfully. “It means that you are endowed rarely, by God himself, with powers the most unusual, the most wondrous, the most beautiful, most high and godlike of any which are allowed to mortals. I have seen this long, long ago—I have mused over it; hoped, prayed, that it might not be so; nay, striven to repress the germs of it in your young spirit, yet never have I spoken of it until now; for I knew not that you were conscious, and would not be he that should awaken you to the consciousness of the grand but perilous possession which you hold, delegated to you direct from Omnipotence.”

He paused, and she gazed at him with lips apart, and eyes wide in wonder. The color died away in a sort of mysterious awe from her warm cheek. The blood rushed tumultuously to her heart. She listened breathless and amazed. Never had she heard him speak thus, never imagined that he felt thus, before—yet now that she did hear, she felt as though she were but listening again to that which she had heard many times before; and though she understood not his words altogether, they had struck a kindred chord in her inmost soul, and while its vibration was almost too much for her powers of endurance, it yet told her that his words were true.

She could not for her life have bid him go on, but for worlds she would not have failed to hear him out.

He watched the changed expression of her features, and half struck with a feeling of self-reproach that he should have created doubts, perhaps fears, in that ingenuous soul, smiled on her kindly, and asked in a confident tone⁠—

“You have felt this already, have you not, my child?”

“Not as you put it to me, father; no, I have never dreamed or hoped that I had any such particular gift of God, such glorious and preëminent possession as this of which you speak. I may, indeed, have fancied at times that there was something within me, in which I differed from others around me—something which made me feel more joy, deeper, and fuller, and more soul-fraught joy, than they feel; and sorrow, softer, and moved more easily, if not more piercing or more permanent—which made me love the world, and its inhabitants, and above all its Maker, with a far different love from theirs—something which evermore seems struggling within me, as if it would forth and find tongue, but cannot. But now, that you have spoken, I know that it indeed must be as you say, and that this unknown something is a gift, is a possession from on high. What is this thing, my father?”

“My child, this thing is genius,” replied the old man solemnly.

The bright blood rushed back to her cheeks in a flood of crimson glory; a strange, clear light, which never had enkindled them before, sprang from her soft dark eyes; she leaned forward eagerly⁠—

“Genius!” she cried. “Genius, and I! Father, you dream, dear father.”

“Would that I did; but I do not, Theresa.”

“And wherefore, if it be so, indeed, that I am so gifted, wherefore would you alter it, my father?”

“I would not alter it,” he replied, “my little girl. Far be it from my thoughts, weak worm that I am, to alter, even if I could alter, the least of the gifts of the great Giver. And this, whether it be for good, or unto evil, is one of the greatest and most glorious. I would not alter it, Theresa. But I would guide, would direct, would moderate it. I would accustom you to know and comprehend the vast power of which you, all unconsciously, are the possessor. For, as I said, it is a fearful and a perilous power. God forbid that I should pronounce the most marvelous and godlike of the gifts which he vouchsafes to man, a curse and not a blessing; God forbid that, even while I see how oft it is turned into bitterness and blight by the coldness of the world, and the check of its heaven-soaring aspirations, I should doubt that it has within itself a sovereign balm against its own diseases, a rapture mightier than any of its woes, an inborn and eternal consciousness which bears it up, as on immortal pinions, above the cares of the world and the poor consciousness of self. Nevertheless it is a perilous gift, and too often, to your sex, a fatal one. Yet I would not alarm you, my own child, for you have gentleness of soul, which may well temper the coruscations of a spirit which waxes oftentimes too strong to be womanly, and piety which shall, I trust, preserve you, should any aspiration of your heart wax over vigorous and daring to be contented with the limitations of humanity. In the meantime, my child, fear nothing, follow the dictates of your own pure heart, and pray for His aid, who neither giveth aught, nor taketh away, without reason. Hark!” he interrupted himself, starting slightly, “there is a sound of horses’ hoofs without; your brother has returned, and it may be Sir Miles is with him. We will speak more of this hereafter.”

And with the word he turned and left the room.

When he was gone she raised her eyes to heaven, and with a strange rapt expression on her fair features rose to her feet, exclaiming⁠—

“Genius! Genius! Great God, Great God, I thank thee.”

Then, in the fervor of the moment, which led her naturally to clasp her hands together, she made a movement to withdraw her fingers from Jasper’s deathlike grasp, unconscious, for the time, of every thing around her.

But, as she did so, a tightened pressure of his hand, and some inarticulate sounds which proceeded from his lips, recalled her with a start to herself.

She dropped into her seat, as if conscience-stricken, gazed fixedly in his face, then stooped and pressed her lips on his inanimate brow; started again, looked about the room with a half guilty glance, bowed her head on his pillow, and wept bitterly.



The Recognition.

They had been friends in youth.


The evening had advanced far into night before the effects of the potion he had swallowed passed away, and left the mind of Jasper clear, and his pulse regular and steady. When he awoke from his long stupor, and turned his eyes around him, it seemed as if he had dreamed of what he saw before him; for the inanimate objects of the room, nay, the very faces which met his eye, had something in them that was not altogether unfamiliar, yet for his life he could not have recalled when, or if ever he had seen them before.

The old dark-wainscoted walls of the irregular, many-recessed apartment, adorned with a few watercolor drawings, and specimens of needle-work, the huge black and gold Indian cabinet in one corner, the tall clock-stand of some foreign wood in another, the slab above the yawning hearth covered with tropical shells and rare foreign curiosities, the quaint and grotesque chairs and tables, with strangely contorted legs and arms, and wild satyr-like faces grinning from their bosses, the very bed on which he lay, with its carved head-board, and groined canopy of oak, and dark green damask curtains, were all things which he felt he must have seen, though where and how he knew not.

So was the face of the slight fair-haired girl who sat a little way removed from his bed’s head, by a small round work-table, on which stood a waxen taper, bending over some one of those light tasks of embroidery or knitting which women love, and are wont to dignify by the name of work.

On her he fixed his eyes long and wistfully, gazing at her, as he would have done at a fair picture, without any desire to address her, or to do aught that should induce her to move from the graceful attitude in which she sat, giving no sign of life save in the twinkling of her long, downcast eyelashes, in the calm rise and fall of her gentle bosom, and the quick motion of her busy fingers.

Jasper St. Aubyn was still weak, but he was unconscious of any pain or ailment, though he now began gradually to remember all that had passed before he lost his consciousness in the deep pool above the fords of Widecomb.

So weak was he, indeed, that it was almost too great an effort for him to consider where he was, or how he had been saved, much more to move his body, or ask any question of that fair watcher. He felt indeed that he should be perfectly contented to lie there all his life, in that painless tranquil mood, gazing upon that fair picture.

But while he lay there, with his large eyes wide open and fixed upon her, as if by their influence he would have charmed her soul out of its graceful habitation, a word or two spoken in a louder voice than had yet struck his ear, for persons had been speaking in the room all the time, although he had not observed them, attracted his notice to the other side of his bed.

It was not so much the words, for he scarce heard, and did not heed their import, as the tone of voice which struck him; for though well-known and most familiar, he could in no wise connect it with the other things around him.

With the desire to ascertain what this might mean, there came into his mind, he knew not wherefore, a wish to do so unobserved; and he proceeded forthwith to turn himself over on his pillow so noiselessly as to excite no attention in the watchers, whoever they might be.

He had not made two efforts, however, to do this, before he became aware of what, while he lay still, he did not suspect, that several of his limbs had received severe contusions, and could not as yet be moved with impunity.

He was a singular youth, however, and an almost Spartan endurance of physical pain, with a strange persistence in whatever he undertook, had been from very early boyhood two of his strongest characteristics.

In spite, therefore, of his weakness, in spite of the pain every motion gave him, he persevered, and turning himself inch by inch, at length gained a position which enabled him clearly to discern the speakers.

They were two in number, the one facing him, the other having his back turned so completely that all he could see was a head covered with long-curled locks of snow-white hair, a dark velvet cloak, and the velvet scabbard of a long rapier protruding far beyond the legs of the oak chair on which he sat. The lower limbs of this person were almost lost in darkness as they lay carelessly crossed under the table, so that he divined rather than saw that they were cased in heavy riding-boots, on the heels of which a faint golden glimmer gave token of the wearer’s rank, by the knightly spurs he wore.

The lamp which stood upon the table by which they were conversing was set between the two, so that it was quite invisible to Jasper, and its light, which to his eyes barely touched the edges of the figure he had first observed, fell full upon the pale high brow and serene lineaments of the other person, who was in fact no other than the old man who had spoken to the youth in the intervals of his trance, and administered the potion from the effects of which he was but now recovering.

Of this, however, Jasper had no recollection, although he wondered, as he had done concerning the girl, where he had before seen that fine countenance and benevolent expression, and how once seen he ever should have forgotten it.

There was yet a third person in the group, though he took no part in the conversation, and appeared to be, like Jasper, rather an interested and observant witness of what was going on, than an actor in the scene.

He was a tall, dark-haired and dark-eyed man, in the first years of manhood, not perhaps above five or six years Jasper’s senior; but his bronzed and sunburnt cheeks curiously contrasted with the fairness of his forehead, where it had not been exposed to the sun, and an indescribable blending of boldness, it might have almost been called audacity, with calm self-confidence and cold composure, which made up the expression of his face, seemed to indicate that he had seen much of the world, and learned many of its secrets, perhaps by the stern lessoning of the great teachers, suffering and sorrow.

The figure of this young man was but imperfectly visible, as he stood behind the high-backed chair, on which the old man, whom from the similarity in their features, if not in their expression, Jasper took to be his father, was seated. But his face, his muscular neck, his well-developed chest and broad shoulders, displayed by a close-fitting jerkin of some dark stuff, were all in strong light; and as the features and expression of the countenance gave token of a powerful character and energetic will, so did the frame give promise of ability to carry out the workings of the mind.

The dialogue, which had been interrupted by a silence of some seconds following on the words that had attracted Jasper’s notice, was now continued by the old man who sat facing him.

“That question,” he said, in a firm yet somewhat mournful tone, “is not an easy one to answer. The difficulty of subduing prejudices on my own part, the fear of wounding pride on yours—these might have had their share in influencing my conduct. Beside, you must remember that years have elapsed—the very years which most form the character of men—since we parted; that they have elapsed under circumstances the most widely different for you and for me; that we are not, in short, in any thing the same men we then were—that the gnarled, weather-beaten, earth-fast oak of centuries differs not so much from the green pliant sapling of half a dozen summers, as the old man, with his heart chilled and hardened into living steel by contact with the world, from the youth full of generous impulses and lofty aspirations, loving all men, and doubting naught either in heaven above, or in the earth beneath. You must remember, moreover, that although, as you have truly said, we were friends in youth, our swords, our purses, and our hearts in common, we had even then many points of serious difference; and lastly, and most of all, you must remember that if we had been friends, we were not friends when we last parted⁠—”

“What! what!” exclaimed a voice, which Jasper instantly recognized for his father’s, though for years he had not heard him speak in tones of the like animation. “What, William Allan, do you mean to say that you imagined that any enmity could have dwelt in my mind, for so slight a cause⁠—”

“Slight a cause!” interrupted the other. “Do you call that slight which made my heart drop blood, and my brain boil with agony for years—which changed my course of life, altered my fortunes, character, heart, soul, forever; which made me, in a word, what I now am? Do you call that a slight cause, Miles St. Aubyn? Show me, then, what you call a grave one.”

“I had forgotten, William, I had forgotten,” replied Sir Miles, gently, and perhaps self-reproachfully. “I mean, I had forgotten that the rivaling in a strife which to the winner seems a little thing, may to the loser be death, or worse than death! Forgive me, William Allan, I had forgotten in my selfish thoughtlessness, and galled you unawares. But let us say no more of this—let the past be forgotten—let wrongs done, if wrongs were done, be buried in her grave, who was the most innocent cause of them; and let us now remember only that we were friends in youth, and that after long years of separation, we are thus wonderfully brought together in old age; let me hope to be friends henceforth unto the grave.”

“Amen, I say to that. Miles St. Aubyn, amen!”

And the two old men clasped their withered hands across the table, and Jasper might see the big drops trickling slowly down the face of him who was called William Allan, while from the agitation of his father’s frame he judged that he was not free from the like agitation.

There was a little pause, during which, as he fancied the young man looked somewhat frowningly on the scene of reconciliation; but the frown, if frown it were, passed speedily away, and left the bold, dark face as calm and impassive as the surface of a deep unruffled water.

A moment or two afterward, Sir Miles raised his head, which he had bowed a little, perhaps to conceal the feelings which might have agitated it, and again clasping the hand of the other, said eagerly,

“It is you, William, who have saved my boy, my Jasper; and this is not the first time that a scion of your house has preserved one of mine from death, or yet worse, ruin!”

William Allan started, as if a sharp weapon had pierced him,

“And how,” he cried, “Miles St. Aubyn, how was the debt repaid? I tell you it is written in the books that cannot err, that our houses were ordained for mutual destruction!”

“What, man,” exclaimed Sir Miles, half jestingly, “do you still cling to the black art? Do you still read the dark book of fate? Methought that fancy would have taken wing with other youthful follies.”

The old man shook his head sadly, but made no reply.

“And what has it taught thee, William, unless it be that this life is short, and this world’s treasures worthless; and that I have learned from a better book, a book of wider margin. What, I say, has it taught thee, William Allan?”

“All things,” replied the old man, sorrowfully. “Even unto this meeting—every action, every event of my own life, past or to come, happy or miserable, virtuous or evil, it has taught me.”

“But has it taught thee, William, whereby to win the good and eschew the evil; whereby to hold fast to the virtuous, and say unto the evil, ‘get behind me?’ Has it taught thee, I say not to be wiser, but to be happier or better?”

“What is, is! What shall be, shall be! What is written, shall be done! We may flap, or flutter, or even fight, like fish or birds, or, if you will, like lions in the toil; but we are netted, and may not escape, from the beginning! The man may learn the workings of the God, but how shall he control them?”

“And this is thy philosophy—this all that thine art teaches?”

“It is. No more.”

“A sad philosophy—a vain art,” replied the other. “I’ll none of them.”

“I tell thee, Miles St. Aubyn, that years ago, years ere I had heard of Widecomb or its water, I saw yon deep, red-whirling pool; I saw that drowning youth; I saw the ready rescue, and the gentle nursing; and now,” he cried, stretching his hands out widely, and gazing into vacancy, “I see a wilder and a sadder sight—a deeper pool, a stronger cataract, a fierce storm thundering on the hills, and torrents thundering down every gorge and gully to swell the flooded rivers. A young man and a maiden—yet no! no! not a maiden! mounted on gallant horses, are struggling in the whelming eddies. Great God! avert—hold! hold! He lifts his arm, he smites her with his loaded whip—smites her between the eyes that smile upon him; she falls, she is down, down in the whirling waters—rider and horse swept over the mad cataract; but who—who?—ha!” and with a wild shriek he started to his feet, and fell back into the arms of the young man, who from the beginning of the paroxysm evidently had expected its catastrophe, and who, with the assistance of the girl, supported him, now quite inanimate and powerless, from the room, merely saying to Sir Miles, “Be not alarmed, I will return forthwith.”

“My father!” exclaimed Jasper, in a faint voice, as the door closed upon them.

The old man turned hastily to the well-known accents, and hurried to the bed-side. “My boy, my own boy, Jasper. Now, may God’s name be praised forever!”

And falling into a chair by his pillow, the same chair on which that sweet girl had sat a few hours before, he bent over him, and asked him a thousand questions, waiting for no reply, but bathing his face with his tears, and covering his brow with kisses.

When he had at length satisfied the old man that he was well and free from pain, except a few slight bruises, he asked his father eagerly where he was, and who was that strange old man.

“You are in the cottage, my dear boy,” replied the old knight, “above Widecomb pool, tended by those who, by the grace of God and his exceeding mercy, saved you from the consequences of the frantic act which so nearly left me childless. Oh! Jasper, Jasper, ’twas a fearful risk, and had well-nigh been fatal.”

“It was but one misstep, father,” replied the youth, who, as he rapidly recovered his strength, recovered also his bold speech and daring courage. “Had there been but foot-hold at the tunnel’s end, I had landed my fish bravely; and, on my honor, I believe had I such another on my line’s end, I should risk it again. Why, father, he was at least a thirty pounder.”

“Never do so—never do so again, Jasper. Remember that to risk life heedlessly, and for no purpose save an empty gratification, a mere momentary pleasure, is a great crime toward God, and a gross act of selfishness toward men, as much so as to peril or to lose it in a high cause, or for a noble object, is great and good, and self-devoted. Think! had you perished here, all for a paltry fish, which you might purchase for a silver crown, you had left to me years—nay, a life of misery.”

“Nay, father, I never thought of that,” answered the young man, not unmoved by the remonstrance of his father, “but it was not the value of the fish. I should have given him away ten to one, had I taken him. It was that I do not like to be beaten.”

“A good feeling, Jasper; and one that leads to many good things, and without which nothing great can be attained; but to do good, like all other feelings, it must be moderated and controled by reason. But you must learn to think ever before acting, Jasper.”

“I will—I will, indeed, sir; but you have not told me who is this strange old man?”

“An old friend of mine, Jasper—an old friend whom I have not seen for years, and who is now doubly a friend, since he has saved your life.”

At this moment the door opened, and the young man entered bearing a candle.

“He is at ease now,” he said. “It is a painful and a searching malady to which at seasons he is subject. We know well how to treat him; when he awakes tomorrow, he will remember nothing of what passed to-day, though at the next attack he will remember every circumstance of this. I pray you, therefore, Sir Miles, take no note in the morning, nor appear to observe it, if he be somewhat silent and reserved. Ha! young sir,” he continued, seeing that Jasper was awake, and taking him kindly by the hand, “I am glad to see that you have recovered.”

“And I am glad to have an opportunity to thank you, that you have saved my life, which I know you must have done right gallantly, seeing the peril of the deed.”

“About as gallantly as you did, when you came so near losing it,” he answered. “But come, Sir Miles, night wears apace, and if you will allow me to show you to your humble chamber, the best our lowly house can offer, I will wish you good repose, and return to watch over my young friend here.”

“My age must excuse me, that I accept your offer, whose place it should be to watch over him myself.”

“I need no watcher, sir,” replied Jasper, boldly. “I am quite well now, and shall sleep, I warrant you, unto cock-crow without awakening.”

“Good-night, then, boy!” cried Sir Miles, stooping over him and again kissing his brow, “and God send thee better in health and wiser in condition.”

“Good-night, sir; and God send me stronger and braver, and more like my father,” said the youth, with a light laugh.

“I will return anon, young friend—for friends, I hope, we shall be,” said the other, as he left the room lighting Sir Miles respectfully across the threshold.

“I hope we shall—and I thank you. But I shall be fast asleep ere then.”

And so he was; but not the less for that did the stalwart young man watch over him, sitting erect in one of the high-backed chairs, until the first pale light of dawn came stealing in through the latticed casement, and the shrill cry of the early cock announced the morning of another day.



The Lovesuit.

He either fears too much,

  Or his deserts are small,

Who would not put it to the touch,

  To win or lose it all.


The earliest cock had barely crowed his first salutation to the awakening day, and the first warblers had not yet begun to make their morning music in the thick shrubberies around the cottage, when aroused betimes by his anxiety for Jasper, Sir Miles made his appearance, already full dressed, at the door of the room in which his son was sleeping.

For he was still asleep, with that hardy young man still watching over him, apparently unmoved by the loss of his own rest, and wholly indifferent to what are usually deemed the indispensable requirements of nature.

“You are afoot betimes, sir,” said the youth, rising from his seat as the old cavalier entered the room; “pity that you should have arisen so early, for I could have watched him twice as long, had it been needful, but in truth it was not so. Your son has scarce moved, Sir Miles, since you left the chamber last night. You see how pleasantly and soundly he is sleeping.”

“It was not that, young sir,” replied the old man, cordially. “It was not that I doubted your good will, or your good watching either; but he is my son, my only son, and how should I but be anxious. But as you say, he sleeps pleasantly and well. God be thanked therefore. He will be none the worse for this.”

“Better, perhaps, Sir Miles,” replied the other, with a slight smile. “Wiser, at least, I doubt not he will be; for in good truth, it was a very boyish, and a very foolish risk to run.”

The old man, for the first time, looked at the speaker steadfastly, and was struck by the singular expression of his countenance—that strange mixture of impassive self-confident composure, and half-scornful audacity, which I have mentioned as being his most striking characteristics. On the preceding evening, Sir Miles had been so much engrossed by the anxiety he felt about his son, and subsequently by the feelings called forth in his inmost heart by the discovery of an old comrade in the person of William Allan, that in fact he had paid little attention to either of the other personages present.

He had observed, indeed, that there were a fair young girl and a powerfully framed youth present; he had even addressed a few words casually to both of them, but they had left no impression on his mind, and he had not even considered who or what they were likely to be.

Now, however, when he was composed and relieved of fear for his son’s life, he was struck, as I have said, by the expression and features of the young man, and began to consider who he could be; for there was no such similarity, whether of feature, expression, voice, air or gesture, between him and William Allan, as is wont to exist between son and sire.

After a moment’s pause, however, the old cavalier replied, not altogether pleased apparently by the tone of the last remark.

“It was a very bold and manly risk, it appears to me,” he said, “and if rash, can hardly be called boyish; and you, I should think,” he added, “would be the last to blame bold actions. You look like any thing but one who should recommend cold counsels, or be slack either to dare or do. I fancy you have seen stirring times somewhere, and been among daring deeds yourself.”

“So many times, Sir Miles,” replied the young man, modestly, “that I have learned how absurd it is to seek such occasions without cause. There be necessary risks enough in life, and man has calls enough, and those unavoidable, on his courage, without going out of his way to seek them, or throwing any energy or boldness unprofitably to the winds. At least so I have found it in the little I have seen of human life and action.”

“Ha! you speak well,” said Sir Miles, looking even more thoughtfully than before at the marked and somewhat weatherbeaten features of the young man. “And where have you met with perils so rife, and learned so truly the need of disciplining natural energies and valor.”

“On the high seas, Sir Miles, of which I have been a follower from a boy.”

“Indeed! are you such a voyager! and where, I pray you, have you served?”

“I cannot say that I have exactly served. But I have visited both the Indias, East and West; and have seen some smart fighting—where they say peace never comes—beyond the Line, I mean, with the Dons, both in Darien and Peru.”

“Ha! but you have indeed seen the world, for one so young as you; and yet I think you have not sailed in the king’s ships, nor held rank in the service.”

“No, Sir Miles, I am but a poor free-trader; and yet sometimes I think that we have carried the English flag farther, and made the English name both better known, and more widely feared, than the cruisers of any king who has sat on our throne, since the good old days of Queen Bess.”

“His present majesty did good service against the Dutch, young man. And what say you to Blake? Who ever did more gloriously at sea, than rough old Blake?”

“Ay, sir, but that was in Noll’s days, and we may not call him a king of England, though of a certainty he was her wise and valiant ruler. And for his present majesty, God bless him! that Opdam business was when he was the Duke of York; and he has forgotten all his glory, I think, now that he has become king, and lets the Frenchman and the Don do as they please with our colonists and traders, and the Dutchman, too, for that matter.”

The old man paused, and shook his head gravely for a moment, but then resumed with a smile,

“So, so, my young friend, you are one of those bold spirits who claim to judge for yourselves, and make peace or war, as you think well, without waiting the slow action of senates or kings, who hold that hemispheres, not treaties, are the measure of hostility or amity.”

“Not so, exactly, noble sir. But where we find peace or war, there we take them; and if the Dons wont be quiet on the other side the Line, and our good king wont keep them quiet, why we must either take them as we find them, or give up the great field to them altogether.”

“Which you hold to be unEnglish and unmanly?”

“Even so, sir.”

“Well, I, for one, will not gainsay you. But do not you fear, sometimes that while you are thus stretching a commission—that is the term, I believe, among you liberal gentlemen—you may chance to get your own neck stretched some sultry morning in the Floridas or in Darien.”

“One of the very risks I spoke of but now, Sir Miles,” replied the young man, laughing. “My life were not worth five minutes’ purchase if the Governor of St. Augustine, or of Panama either, for that matter, could once lay hold on me.”

“I marvel,” said the old cavalier, again shaking his head solemnly, “I marvel much—” and then interrupting himself suddenly in the middle of his sentence, he lapsed into a fit of meditative silence.

“At what, if I may be so bold—at what do you so much marvel?”

“That William Allan should consent,” replied the cavalier, “that son of his should embark in so wild and stormy a career, in a career which, I should have judged, with his strict principles and somewhat puritanical feeling, he would deem the reverse of gracious or godfearing.”

“He knows not what career I follow,” answered the young man, bluntly. “But you are in error altogether, sir. I am no son of William Allan.”

“No son of William Allan! Ha! now that I think of it, your features are not his, nor your voice either.”

“Nor my body, nor my soul!” replied the other, hastily and hotly, “no more than the free falcon’s are those of the caged linnet! Sometimes I even marvel how it can be that any drop of mutual or common blood should run in our veins; and yet it is so—and I—I—yet no—I do not repent it!”

“And wherefore should you? there is no worthier or better man, I do believe, than William Allan living; and, in his younger days at least, I know there was no braver.”

“No braver?—indeed! indeed!” exclaimed the young man, eagerly—“was he, indeed, brave?”

“Ay, was he, youth! brave both to do and to suffer. Brave, both with the quick and dauntless courage to act, and with the rarer and more elevated courage to resolve and hold fast to resolution. But who are you, who, living with him, know both so little and so much of William Allan? If you be not his son, who are you?”

“His sister’s son, Sir Miles—his only sister’s son, to whom, since that sister’s death, he has been—God forgive me for that I said but now—more than a father; for surely I have tried him more than ever son tried a father, and he has borne with me still with a most absolute indulgence and unwearied love.”

“What—what!” exclaimed Sir Miles, much moved and even agitated by what he heard, “are you the child of that innocent and beautiful Alicia Allan, whom—whom—” The old man faltered and stopped short, for he was in fact on the point of bursting into tears.

But the youth finished the sentence which he had left unconcluded, in a stern, slow voice, and with a lowering brow.

“Whom your friend, Durzil Olifaunt, betrayed by a mock marriage, and afterward deserted with her infants. Yes, Sir Miles, I am one of those infants, the son of Alicia Allan’s shame! And my uncle did not slay him—therefore it is I asked you, was he brave.”

“And yet he was slain—and for that very deed!” replied the old man, gloomily, with his eyes fixed upon the ground.

“He was slain,” repeated the young sailor, whose curiosity and interest were now greatly excited. “But how can you tell wherefore? No one has ever known who slew him—how, then, can you name the cause of his slaying?”

“There is One who knows all things!”

“But He imparts not his knowledge,” answered the other, not irreverently. “And unless you slew him, I see not how you can know this. Yet, hold, hold!” he continued impetuously, as he saw that Sir Miles was about to speak, “if you did slay him, tell it not; for if he did betray my mother, if he did abandon me to disgrace and ruin—still, still he was my father.”

“I slew him not, young man,” replied the cavalier, gravely, “but he was slain for the cause that I have named, and I saw him die—repentant.”

“Repentant!” exclaimed the youth, grasping the withered hand of the old knight, in the intensity of his emotions, “did he repent the wrong he had done my mother?”

“As surely as he died.”

“May God forgive him, then,” said the seaman, clasping his hands together and bursting into tears, “as I forgive him.”

“Amen! amen!” cried the knight, “for he was mine ancient friend, the comrade of my boyhood, before he did that thing; and I, too, have something to forgive to him.”

“You, Sir Miles, you!—what can you have to forgive?”

“Tell me first, tell me—how are you named?”

“Durzil,” answered the youth, “Durzil, Nothing!” he added, very bitterly, “my country, and my country’s law give me no other name, but only Durzil—its enemies have named me Bras-de-fer!”

“Then mark me, Durzil; as he of whom you are sprung, of whom you are named, was my first friend, so was your mother my first love; and she returned my love, till he, my sometime confidant, did steal her from me, and made his paramour, whom I had made my wife.”

“Great God!” exclaimed the young man, struck with consternation; “then it must, it must have been so—it was you who slew my—my father!”

“Young man, I never lied.”

“Pardon me, Sir Miles. Pardon me, I am half distraught. And you loved my mother, and—and—he repented. Why was not I told of this before? And yet,” he added, again pausing, as if some fresh suspicion struck him, “and yet how is this? I heard you speak yester even to my uncle, of wrongs done—done by yourself to him, and of a woman’s death—that woman, therefore, was not, could not have been my mother. Who, then, was she?”

His mother,” replied Sir Miles St. Aubyn, calmly, but sadly, pointing to the bed on which Jasper lay sleeping tranquilly and all unconsciously of the strange revelations which were going on around him. “If my friend robbed me of William Allan’s sister, so I won from William Allan, in after days, her who owned his affection; but with this difference, that she I won never returned your uncle’s love from the beginning, and that I never betrayed his confidence. If I were the winner, it was in fair and loyal strife, and though it has been, as I learned for the first time last night, a sore burthen on your uncle’s heart, it has been none on my conscience; my withers are unwrung.”

“I believe it, sir; from my soul, I believe it,” cried the young man, enthusiastically, “for, on my life, I think you are all honor and nobility. But tell me, tell me now, if you love, if you pity me—as you should do for my mother’s sake—who slew my father?”

“I have sworn,” answered the cavalier, “I have sworn never to reveal that to mortal man; and if I had not sworn, to you I could not reveal it; for, if I judge aright, you would hold yourself bound to⁠—”

“Avenge it!” exclaimed the youth, fiercely, interrupting him; “ay, were it at my soul’s purchase—since he repented.”

“He did repent, Durzil; nay, more, he died, desiring only that he could repair the wrong he had done you, regretting only that he could not give you his name and his inheritance, as he did give you his dying blessing, and your mother his last thought, his last word in this world.”

“Did she know this?”

“Durzil, I cannot answer you; for within a few days after your father’s death, I left England for the Low Countries, and returned not until many a year had passed into the bygone eternity. When I did return, the sorrows of Alicia Allan were at an end forever; and though I then made all inquiries in all quarters, I could learn nothing of your uncle or yourself, nor ever have heard of you any more until last night, when we were all so singularly brought together.”

“I ought to have known this; I would, I would to God that I had known it. My life had been less wild, then, less turbulent, less stormy. My spirit had not then burned with so rash a recklessness. It was the sense of wrong, of bitter and unmerited wrong done in past times, of cold and undeserved scorn heaped on me in the present, as the bastard—the child of infamy and shame! that goaded me into so hot action. But it is done now, it is done, and cannot be amended. The world it is which has made me what I am—let the world look to it—let the world enjoy the work of its hands.”

“There is nothing, Durzil,” said the old man, solemnly, “nothing but death that cannot be amended. Undone things may not be, but all may be amended, by God’s good grace to aid us.”

“Hast thou not seen a sapling in the forest, which, overcrowded by trees of stronger growth, or warped from its true direction by some unnoted accident, hath grown up vigorous indeed and strong, but deformed and distorted in its yearly progress, until arrived at its full maturity, not all the art or all the strength of man or man’s machinery can force it from its bias, or make it straight and comely? So is it with the mind of man, Sir Miles. While it is young and plastic, you shall direct it as you will—once ripened, hardened in its growth, whether that growth be tortuous or true, as soon shall you remodel the stature of the earth-fast oak, as change its intellectual bias. But I am wearying you, I fancy, and wasting words in unavailing disquisition. I hear my uncle’s step without, moreover; permit me, I will join him.”

“Hold yet a moment,” replied the old man, kindly, “and let me say this to you now, while we are alone, which I may perchance lack opportunity to say hereafter. Your mother’s son, Durzil Olifaunt—for so I shall ever call you, and so by his last words you are entitled to be called—can never weary me. Your welfare will concern me ever—what interests you will interest me always, and next to my own son I shall hold you nearest and dearest to this old heart at all times. Now leave me if you will—yet hold! tell me before you go, what I am fain to learn concerning your good uncle—the knowledge shall perchance save painful explanation, perchance grave misunderstanding.”

“All that I know is at your service,” answered the young man, in a calmer and milder tone than he had used heretofore—for he was, in truth, much moved and softened by the evident feeling of the old cavalier; “but let me thank you first for your kindly offers, which, should occasion offer, believe me, I will test as frankly as you have made them nobly.”

To his latter words Miles St. Aubyn made no answer, except a grave inclination of his head, for his mind was preoccupied now by thoughts of very different import—was fixed, indeed, on days long passed, and on old painful memories.

“This girl,” he said at length, “this fair young girl whom I saw here last night, is she—is she your sister? I think you had a sister—yet this fair child hath not Alicia’s hair, nor her eyes—who is she?”

“God was most good in that,” answered the seaman, with much feeling, “he took my sister to himself, even before my mother pined away. A man’s lot is hard enough who is the son of shame—a woman’s is intolerable anguish. Theresa is my uncle’s child—his only child. His love for her is almost idolatry, and were it altogether so, she deserves it all. Lo! there she passes by the casement—was ever fairer face or lovelier figure? and yet her soul, her innocent and artless soul, has beauties that as far surpass those personal charms, as they exceed all other earthly loveliness.”

“You love her,” said the cavalier, looking quickly upward, for he had been musing with downcast eyes, while Durzil spoke, and had not even raised his lids to gaze upon Theresa as she passed through the garden. “You love this innocent and gentle child.”

The young man’s cheek burned crimson, ashamed that he should have revealed himself so completely to one who was almost a stranger. But he was not one to deny or disguise a single feeling of his heart, whether for good or for evil, and he replied, after a moment’s pause, with an unfaltering and steady voice, “I do love her, more than my own soul!”

“And she,” asked the old knight, “does she know, does she return your affection?”

Again the sailor hesitated, “Women, they say,” he replied, at length, “know always by a natural instinct when they are beloved, and therefore I believe she knows it. For the rest, she is always most affectionate, most gentle, nay, even tender. Further than this, I may not judge.”

“Father,” exclaimed a faint voice from the bed, at this moment. “Is that you, father?” and Jasper St. Aubyn opened his eyes, languid yet from the heavy slumber into which the opiate had cast him, and raised himself up a little on his pillow, though with a slow and painful motion.

“My son,” cried the old man, hurrying to the side of the bed, “my own boy, Jasper, how fare you now? You have slept well.”

“So well,” answered the bold boy, “that I feel strong enough, and clear enough in the head, to be up and about; but that whenever I would move a limb, there comes an accursed twinge to put me in mind that limestone rock is harder than bone and muscle.”

Meanwhile, as soon as the old cavalier’s attention was diverted by the awakening of his own son from his trance-like slumber, Durzil Bras-de-fer, as he called himself, and as I shall therefore call him, left the room quietly, and a few minutes afterward might have been seen, had not the eyes of those within the chamber been otherwise directed, to pass the casement, following the same path which had been taken by Theresa Allan a little while before.

[To be continued.





And they came to Elim, where were twelve wells of water, and threescore and ten palm-trees, and they encamped there by the waters.

Exodus xv. 27.

Noon on the burning desert!

  Unutterable noon!

On the wandering band, from Goshen’s land,

  Shod in the wondrous shoon!


Blasting the man of might,

  Blighting the infant flower,

And quenching the light to the mother’s sight

  As it droops in the fearful hour!


Look out o’er the blinding heaven!

  Look out o’er the searèd ground!

Is naught in view save the torturing blue

  And the maddening sand around?


Behold a speck afar!

  It seemeth a cloud like a hand,

And it beck’neth us on through the raging sun

  Away to the Promised Land!


Is it the Angel of Death,

  Sent forth as a mocking guide?

Is it the trace of the warrior race

  As they scour the trackless wide?


No! by the Cloudy Pillar!

  No! by our Fiery Friend!

From the bush of flame the great I AM

  Hath bidden us onward wend!


On to the Seventy Palm Trees!

  On to the water’s brink!

Where the wayfaring rest on the green earth’s breast,

  And the fainting pilgrims drink!


Drink! and forget their misery,

  And remember their toil no more;

Rest! while the breeze sways the stately trees

  Those dark, cool waters o’er!


Drink! parched and panting Israel!

  In those draughts of mercy deep

There mingles no tide of the Marah wide

  Where thy innermost soul shall steep!


Rest! worn and weary Israel!

  In the dream of thy sleeping eyes

There dwelleth no thought of the ruin wrought

  By coming centuries!


Oh, Elim! loveliest Elim!

  Gem of the desert old!

Green be thy mighty shadows,

  Pure be thy waters cold!


How often, ’mid life’s vast desert,

  My heart within me swells,

As I sigh for thy Seventy Palm Trees,

  And for thy Twelve Deep Wells!





The vital elements of all things gifted

  With promise or with truth,

By God’s own hand benignantly are lifted

  Into perennial youth.


O then, with gentle reverence, surrender

  The wish to interfere,

Behold the miracle, devout and tender,

  But enter not its sphere!


Childhood, with meek intelligence, appealing,

  When guardians annoy,

As gush the sympathies its life revealing,

  Asks freedom to enjoy.


Genius, by graceful waywardness, achieving

  Its claim the boon to share,

A narrow doom in Fancy’s world retrieving,

  Expands untrammeled there.


The throes of nations plead that right be tested⁠—

  The Present grapple fairly with the Past,

For Liberty’s pure zeal if unmolested,

  Will triumph at the last!


Profane not Love in its divine seclusion,

  If true, its hope is sure,

Born in weak hearts it is a chance illusion,

  That vainly would endure.


For all things destined to survive, engender

  Their own progressive life,

And Truth, forsaken by her last defender,

  Yet conquers in the strife.


In its dim crypt of mould the seed implanted

  Will germinate and spring,

Poised in her azure realm the lark undaunted

  Exultingly will sing!


The prayer of wisdom in these later ages

  Is for unchartered right

To turn, at will, her own elected pages,

  With unimpeded sight.


To their own law abandon all things real,

  Nor, with incessant care,

Strive to conform to thy perverse ideal

  What God created fair.





’Tis the grief for their fate gives me mystical lore,

 And coming events cast their shadows before.


’Tis evening, and I stand alone

  On San Francisco’s desert shore,

The wandering night-winds sadly moan,

  And shrieking sea-birds round me soar.

The weary sun hath sunk to sleep

  Beyond the great Pacific’s wave,

While here I stand and idly weep

  That I have been to gold a slave!


O, curses on the maddening cry

  That echoed through my own green land,

And sent me forth, unwept to die,

  Upon this lonely desert strand!

With spirits fresh the hills I trod,

  And in the eager strife for gain

Forgot my country and my God,

  And fevered fancies flushed my brain!


It came at last, the bitter thought,

  That I was linked with toiling slaves,

Whose very life-blood had been bought

  By selfish and designing knaves.

But all too late conviction came,

  And with a down-cast, tearful eye.

I thought with anguish and with shame

  I’d chased an echo here—to die!


O, vain was all our strife for wealth,

  We ploughed the bed of many a stream,

All idly, and with ruined health,

  Heaped curses on our fevered dream,

That drove us from our homes away,

  Athwart the ocean’s furrowed breast,

To find with terror and dismay

  That we were houseless Famine’s guests!


My heart grows sick—my eye grows dim,

  As o’er the watery waste I gaze,

And powerless droops each nerveless limb,

  And manhood’s pride and strength decays.

Adieu, my childhood’s home, for fate

  Hath dimmed the brightness of my sky,

I’ve “dug” my grave, and found too late

  I’ve chased an echo here—to die!






“You seem to have a great deal to say lately about this Miss Hattie Atherton,” said my brother, looking up from his book as I entered the parlor, after escorting to the door a friend who had been making me a morning call.

“Well,” said I, “I hope you have no objection.”

“Objection—no indeed. But what is there in Miss Hattie, that you all like so much? Your friends have been perfectly absorbed in admiration of her for the last three days.”

“If you knew her you would not wonder that we are all glad to have her at home again. She has been absent four years at a boarding-school, and as she is reported to be wonderfully accomplished her return makes quite a sensation in our quiet circle. That is the reason you have heard her name so frequently mentioned.”

“A regular paragon of boarding-school accomplishments, I suppose,” said Fred, with his most scornful sneer. “She doesn’t know a cow from a sheep—works worsted dogs—paints in colors excessively watery—considers her father and mother quite countrified and vulgar—and knows enough of the languages to Frenchify her name into Harriette, or into the more unmeaning diminutive of H-a-t-t-i-e.”

“You are really savage,” replied I, laughing, “but, my good sir, you are quite mistaken in your enumeration, for though she had adopted the diminutive of her somewhat stately name, she is innocent of working worsted dogs, and she rejoices in the knowledge that of the two animals, the cow is the largest. Really, Fred, she is a very lovely girl, perfectly unaffected, and exulting like a freed bird to visit again her old haunts,

“‘In the grove and by the river.’”

“Ah, she is one of that sort, is she? Raves of nature and falls on her knees to a pigweed. For my part, I could never imagine why a boy wasn’t just as natural as an alder bush.”

“You are really impertinent, Fred, to talk so about my friends,” said I, a little vexed.

“Beg your pardon, sis; but you may depend upon it, all boarding-school girls belong to one of two classes—the smart and affected, or the soft and sentimental. You, my dear Mary, are the only one I ever knew to pass the ordeal without being spoiled.”

“Which escape, I presume, you impute entirely to liberal share of advice bestowed by my wise brother. I am quite provoked with you, for your unsparing sarcasms on women.”

“Ah, if they were only all like you,” replied Fred, rising to come to me, and then falling back on the sofa with a growl at the pain the attempt had caused his sprained ankle. Gentle reader, that sprain, which had confined him four days to the sofa, was the sole reason why my good-natured, sensible brother was so “uncommon” cross.

There was a pause, during which Fred cut his nails and I sewed most industriously. “I think,” said he at length—but what he thought was lost forever to the world, for at that moment the door opened and Hattie entered.

“Speak of angels and one sees their wings,” said I, as I rose to welcome her. “You have come just in time to verify the proverb, for we have been speaking of you.” Fred gave me a beseeching glance. He did not know of a plan I had formed, which was quite inconsistent with any attempt to prejudice Miss Atherton against him.

“I hope angels don’t tear their wings as badly as I have torn my shawl. I have come to you for aid, and you see I carry a flag of distress,” replied Hattie, holding out her shawl that had one corner nearly torn off.

“How did you get such a rent in it?” exclaimed I.

“I have been paying a visit to your friend, Murray, and caught it on a nail in his door,” said she laughing.

“What in the world were you doing at Murray’s?”

“I went down to see his child. When I looked out of my window this morning, I was horrified to see that hop pole, whose graceful clusters we were admiring yesterday, lying on the ground, and shorn of its glories. On inquiring the cause of this outrage, I found that Murray went to our house last evening for some hops to make a tea for a sick child, and mother told him to get some from this pole. In doing so, he managed, with Irish dexterity, to throw it down directly across the bed of Dahlias.”

“Your beautiful Dahlias—what a pity!”

“I was very sorry, but fortunately they are not all destroyed. I thought the poor man must have been in desperate haste to do such a thing, and so I went to see if the child were dangerously sick.”

“Those Murrays are protegés of mine, but I didn’t know that any of them were sick.”

“The child seems to be threatened with a fever, but I made them give it a warm bath, and put baths of hops on its head and feet, and before I left, it was quite relieved. I staid to superintend the operations, lest they should not do it properly, for I fancy they are not accustomed to the use of water. To be sure, dirt is the native element of that class—but aren’t they uncommonly dirty?”

“I think they are,” replied I. “Last winter I asked Mrs. Murray why she didn’t wash the children before she put on some new clothes I had provided for them, and she opened her eyes in astonishment. ‘Sure ma’am,’ said she, ‘sure and the dirt keeps ’em warm when they’ve nothin’ else to kiver ’em.’

“I suppose she thinks the same reason applies in summer by the rule of contraries, for they were none of them very clean, and I thought they were rather alarmed at the sight of a tubfull of water. Murray asked if I “wasn’t afeard the child ’ud cotch cold,” but he says he thinks “hops is werry good things,” and she imitated the deep guttural tones of our gardener with a perfection that was perfectly startling.

“You are quite a doctress,” said Fred, when he had done laughing—“can’t you prescribe for me?”

“I should think patience and resignation—an ounce each, thoroughly compounded—would be the most necessary remedy for a sprain,” replied Harriet—and the conversation turned on other subjects.

We examined the shawl, and pronounced it unmendable and I offered to lend her my mantilla. “I will accept it,” said she, “if you will yourself accompany it and assist me in making some purchases this morning. Sally Murphy, who has lived with us so long, is about being married, and father intends furnishing her house for her. It is a small tenement with only four rooms, but it will be all her own, and she would not be more delighted with a palace.”

I was soon ready, and we walked to the cabinet-makers, who was delighted to furnish what we wanted, and then to that “omnium gatherum,” yclept, “the dry goods store,” where we found every thing necessary for our purpose, from the lace for the bride’s dress to the carpet that was to adorn her “keeping-room.” “These are my part of the wedding presents,” said Hattie. “I earned the money—you know how?”

I have said that I had a plan in view, in which my brother and Hattie were to be the principal actors, and you will readily perceive that though not much given to meddling with the affairs of other people, I was sufficiently feminine in my tastes to be something of a matchmaker. Notwithstanding his fine intellectual powers and considerable knowledge derived from men and books, Fred had always been exceedingly deficient in the ability to say and do those graceful nothings that are the usual stepping-stones to an acquaintance between ladies and gentlemen, and this, added to a certain bashfulness that frequently attends a proud, sensitive nature, had kept him from finding any intimate friends among the ladies he had met in his college life, and in his subsequent wanderings over the world. Unfortunately, too, for my matrimonial schemes in his behalf, he was provokingly contented with the prospect of being an old bachelor; and since his establishment in our village, had confined his visits to a few married ladies who were vastly superior in cultivation of mind to any of the unmarried ones of our acquaintance. Thus with a handsome person, and more than ordinary powers of pleasing, had he chosen to exert them, my brother had passed to the shady side of thirty, without having his large, warm heart stirred by a deeper emotion than the quiet love excited by the home circle. I was determined this state of things should not endure much longer, and to Harriet I looked for aid in breaking the spell of indifference that was consigning him to the lonely and selfish existence of a confirmed old bachelor.

Some weeks after the morning on which my story opens, Fred invited me to walk with him to one of his favorite places of resort—a grove that was situated about a mile from the village. The purple light of sunset was thrown like a glory over the surrounding hills, and fell upon the bosom of the river which, foaming in successive rapids through most of its course, here spread out in a broad, deep current, as it swept with graceful curve between its steep wooded banks. Following the path that led down the bank, we came out from the shadow of the trees into a point of land that, jutting out into the river, was covered with a soft greensward. A willow grew on its extremest verge, and on a flat rock under its overhanging branches Hattie Atherton was seated, with her sketch-book on her knee. Her hat lay beside her on the grass, and the wind sweeping back the long, shining curls that usually hung over her face, revealed her broad, intellectual brow, and the perfect contour of her features, while her slight, delicate figure was relieved against the dark trunk of the tree. So absorbed was she in her occupation that she did not know of our approach till we were beside her, and I had taken her book to show Fred her accurate drawing of the view before us. She started up with a slight blush, and turning to my brother said, with a low silvery laugh,

“You ridicule romantic school girls, Mr. Stanley; and as I presume you think I look very much like one at this moment, I must tell you how I happened to be here. Father told me to-day that the course of the M—— railroad has been altered, and it will pass directly along this bank, so that our beautiful grove will be spoiled.”

Great was our indignation at the idea of this invasion, and when we had exhausted almost every expression in the language, Fred declared he would get up a remonstrance and defeat their sacrilegious purposes.

“It will be of no use,” said Hattie. “It is the march of improvement, and we must submit.”

“Worse than the march of the Goths and Vandals,” exclaimed Fred, wrathfully; “the idea of sacrificing these grand old trees to the whims of a few railroad contractors—it is too bad, for the other route will be more convenient for everybody else.”

“I felt sorry enough, as you may imagine,” replied Hattie. “I have spent so many happy hours here that I determined to sketch the view from this point before the measuring-rod or the steam-engine should disturb its quiet beauty.”

“And your pencil has immortalized it; how perfectly you have copied the flickering light that falls on the smooth, dark waters, through those overhanging trees. Really, Miss Atherton, I shall be exceedingly obliged to you for a copy of this picture.”

“You shall have one,” said Hattie, frankly. “I intended making a picture from this, and giving the drawing to Mary, for I know she loves this scene as much as I do. I have so many pleasant associations connected with it, that I feel as if I were to part with an old friend.”

“I can realize your feelings,” replied Fred, “for I, too, have loved to listen on this spot to the many voices of nature. How often have I sat beneath these trees to watch the daylight fade from the hills, and the twilight throw its shadows over the landscape, seeming to descend lower and lower till they rested on the bosom of the river, and I could see nothing but the white foam gleaming through the dark, where it falls over the rocks away yonder. Then the low, thrilling, whispering of the wind among the pines, and the melancholy scream of the night-hawk—I declare they have made me quite poetical, as you see,” he added, smiling, and slightly embarrassed at having been thus betrayed out of his usual composure, which embarrassment was not at all relieved by meeting Hattie’s large dark eyes fixed on him with an expression of wonder and gratification. Perhaps it was this mauvais honte—perhaps it was the argumentative spirit which had occasioned us to give him in the family the soubriquet of “the opposing member”—that gave so singular a turn to this sentimental conversation, when at this moment, in turning over the leaves of her book, Fred found a slip of paper covered with verses of Harriet’s composition.

“So you write poetry, too!” said he, looking up at her with a smile.

“Oh, give it to me—I wouldn’t have you read it for the world,” exclaimed she, springing forward with such evident distress that he reluctantly relinquished the manuscript.

“You needn’t be afraid of his criticism, for he writes poetry sometimes,” said I.

Do you?” said Hattie, incredulously.

“Certainly,” answered my brother; “everybody does now-a-days. In the class from which I graduated at college, there were forty-five, of which forty wrote poetry.”

“Wrote verses, you mean,” said Hattie, demurringly.

“There is very little difference. The Horatian maxim, ‘Poeta nascitur non fit,’ which has so long been thought to countenance a distinction, simply means that men and women who write poetry, like other men and women, are ‘born.’”

“I suppose, then,” replied Hattie, humoring the idea, “that the doctrine that poets were obliged to gallop up the sides of a steep mountain in Greece, on a vicious nondescript called Pegasus, is to be considered wholly metaphorical.”

“Just so,” said Fred. “Pegasus is now a mere omnibus horse, and timid people need no longer be afraid of entering the coach lest they should get a kick from the rampant animal, or be thrown into the depths of Helicon.”

“The doctrine of inspiration is also exploded,” said I, laughing. “Burns used to compose some of his nice little sonnets while engaged in the groveling occupation of ploughing, and if any thing more elaborate than usual was wanting, he took a glass of Scotch whisky.”

“Byron, too,” continued Fred, “wrote under the influence of gin; and it is said of Wordsworth, considered by the Lake school the greatest of modern poets, that he had an assistant feeding him with bread and butter while he was writing the ‘Excursion.’ Whoever, then, can drink whisky and gin, or as coming within the circle of the ‘pledge,’ can eat bread and butter, need fear no lack of inspiration.”

“How ridiculous!” exclaimed Hattie. “What would these great immortals think, could they hear your nonsense.”

“Immortals! there is another false idea that should be given up by all sensible men. Every thing else that is made is made for some object, and its excellence is determined by its fitness for that object—why shouldn’t it be so with poetry. Cheese, for instance, in Connecticut, is made with especial reference to the time of its consumption, and one kind is labeled ‘to be eaten immediately,’ another, ‘in one year,’ ‘two years,’ and so on. So with poetry. Some of it is better to be kept some years and go down to posterity like ‘Paradise Lost’ and Shakspeare, that were not much esteemed at first, you know; other kinds, more fit for present consumption, may be read by moonlight, cried over, and applied to other purposes of poetry.”

“You remind me,” said I, “of a definition I heard the other day, which said, ‘poetry is only pleasant, metrical, musical, writing which amuses and astonishes one’s friends, makes one’s enemies bite their lips for envy, and may be counted on the fingers.’”

“That’s very good,” replied my brother, “but the easiest way to make poetry is to take prose and turn it. I was quite surprised, at an instance of this, I found yesterday, in reading Napier’s History of the Peninsula War. He had been describing the battle of Corunna, and in speaking of the death of Sir John More, he says, very nearly in these words: ‘it was thought best to retreat without waiting for the break of day. The body of Sir John was hurriedly deposited in the earth, near the rampart, without music or even a farewell shot being fired over his grave.’ Mr. Wolfe has immortalized himself, as it is called, by turning this account into verse; and just notice how closely he has followed the prose original:

“‘Not a drum was heard, nor a funeral note,

  As his corpse to the rampart we hurried;

Not a soldier discharged his farewell shot,

  O’er the grave where our hero was buried.’”

It is strikingly like,” said Hattie, “not even the usual descriptive adjectives, and very little amplification. That shows how easily pieces of poetry of great celebrity may have been written. Perhaps you and I may one day be famous. I have often thought how a pensive man, looking at the water in this river during a mild fall of snow, might say very naturally, in thinking of the transitoriness of the pleasures of this world,

‘Like snow falls in a river,

A moment white, then melts forever,’

and yet be unconscious that he had uttered a beautiful comparison.”

“So, too,” said Fred, “any one who has ever cooked a certain kind of shell-fish before sunrise, could not help saying, as the light broke upon him,

“‘Like lobsters boiled—the moon

From black to red begins to turn.’”

“Come,” said Hattie, when our laugh had subsided, “it is getting dark, and as I promised to be at home in time to see Sally dressed for her bridal, I fear if we don’t go now, she will remind me of the pouting dame who sits at home,

“‘Gathering her brows like gathering storm,

Nursing her wrath to keep it warm.’”

After we had left Hattie at her own door, and were proceeding homeward, Fred broke out in his most earnest tone. “That Miss Atherton is a very nice girl; what an intellectual face she has—have you seen any of her poetry—does she write much?”

“Oh, yes—you have read some of it, which she has published anonymously, (but this is a great secret, remember,) and her motive in doing so is as honorable to her heart as the verses are to her poetical powers. You know Mr. Atherton lavishes his wealth upon his children without bounds, and Hattie says it does not seem very benevolent for her to give away her father’s money, so she devotes the proceeds of her literary labors to purposes of charity. She is very kind to the poor; I wish you could see how their faces brighten at her approach.”

“Well done! that is what I like in a woman. She is really a very sensible girl,” replied my brother.

“Even if she does write her name H-a-t-t-i-e,” said I, with a sly glance. Fred pinched my arm, but said nothing.

Time passed on, and I was satisfied that my brother had found out “what there was to like in Hattie Atherton;” but a proud man deeply in love is the most timid of mortals, and he sped but slowly in his wooing. His favorite books were offered for her perusal; and long evenings were spent in arguments upon questions of metaphysics and philosophy, and though Hattie had sufficient strength of intellect to sustain her share of the conversation creditably, she was too much impressed with awe of Fred’s menial abilities to feel perfectly at ease while he was thus drawing forth the powers of her mind; and, mistaking her dignity and slight reserve of manner for indifference or aversion, he dared not betray the strong affection with which she inspired him.

One evening, late in the summer, as I was sitting alone in the twilight, Fred entered hastily, and throwing himself into a chair, exclaimed, “I have just heard very bad news—do you know—have you seen Harriet to-day?”

“No—what has happened? Tell me, for mercy’s sake,” said I, half frightened out of my wits at the sight of his pale face.

“Mr. Atherton has failed.”

“Oh, is that all,” replied I, with a feeling of relief on knowing that nothing dreadful had befallen my friend.

“All!” retorted Fred. “I should think that was enough. It will nearly kill the old man, he has such an overwhelming horror of debt.”

“How did it happen?” said I, rising and putting on my bonnet as I spoke.

“Are you going over there? I will go with you, and tell you about it on the way,” replied Fred, throwing my shawl around me, and giving me his arm. The story was soon told. The loss of a ship which was wrecked without insurance some months before, had somewhat embarrassed him, and the sudden failure of two large mercantile firms in Boston, with whom he was connected had completed the ruin.

As we approached the house through the garden, I proposed that we should go in through one of the parlor windows, which opened upon a grass-plot, and formed a convenient entrance in that direction, of which we had frequently availed ourselves. Never shall I forget the sight which presented itself as we stood before the window. Mrs. Atherton was reclining on the sofa, sobbing bitterly. Mr. Atherton was seated in an arm-chair, his face buried in his hands, and his whole frame shrunk and collapsed, as if beneath a weight of shame and agony. Harriet stood beside him, bathing his head and raising with her smooth, white fingers, the gray locks he had pulled over his brow. The light which fell full on her face, showed that she had been weeping violently; but now there was a faint smile on her trembling lips, and she was talking earnestly. We could not hear what she said, but the tones were full of encouragement, and her attitude and expression betokened firmness and hope. As we gazed, the old man suddenly uncovered his face, and throwing his arms around her neck, drew her mouth down to his, and kissed her fervently.

“We will not intrude here,” said my brother. There was a strange huskiness in his voice, and I felt his whole frame tremble as it did when he was strongly moved.

We walked slowly home again and talked sadly of the misfortune that had befallen our friends—of their plans of quiet happiness that must be given up—of their munificent charities that must be now contracted, and of the anxieties and embarrassments which would harass that honorable old man, but when I said that Lizzy must come home from school, and George must discontinue his studies, Fred replied resolutely that “It must not be;” and when we entered the house, he seated himself before the writing-desk and commenced a letter. Having occasion to cross the room as he was closing it, I took a sister’s liberty to peep over his shoulder, and saw—“So, my dear fellow, do not think of leaving, but draw on me for whatever funds you may require.”

A fortnight elapsed, during which I saw little of Harriet. In his professional capacity, as a lawyer, Fred was busy most of the time with Mr. Atherton, canvassing the business—settling accounts and making assignments; and it was a season of mental torture to the ruined father which could hardly have been borne had it not been for the gentle ministrations of his daughter. She it was who nerved her invalid mother to meet calmly their change of circumstances, and to aid her in consoling the care-worn, haggard man, whose sorrow they so deeply shared. The sight of her lovely face beaming with cheerfulness and affection, the sound of her low musical voice, as she sung the songs he loved, or repeated to him words of religious faith and consolation, seemed to operate like a charm in driving away the cares that haunted him, and gradually her firmness and courage were imparted to him, and he was enabled to lift up his head once more and hope for better days.

Early one morning Hattie entered the room where we were sitting at breakfast, with a face so much more joyful than she had for some time worn, that I knew she must have some good news to communicate.

“It is, indeed, so,” said she, in reply to my inquiry. “I came to tell some news, and also to beg your assistance for to-day.”

“I am at your service,” I answered; “but first tell me what has happened to please you so much?”

“I must premise,” replied she, “what you already know, that on settling up his affairs, father has found that he can pay every cent he owes, and we shall have our dear old house and garden left; and as father has a thousand dollars a year from his land agency, we shall be able to get along quite comfortably. But in order to do so, Lizzy must leave school and George must help support himself for the next eighteen months which elapse before his studies are finished. Now you know he inherits mother’s delicate constitution, and his health is too feeble to allow him to apply himself as closely as will be necessary if he is to earn his own support. Father has a sort of nervous horror of his getting into debt, (and George is as particular as father is on that point,) so, to make my story short,” she added, hesitating a little, while a bright blush suddenly suffused her face, “I am going to support them, and father can keep the old homestead⁠—”

“You support them—how?” we both exclaimed.

“Through the kindness of my old teacher, Miss W——. Lizzy mentioned in her last letter that Miss Foster, who has so long taught drawing and music at the Seminary, had left to be married, and their present teacher was not considered competent. So I wrote the day after our misfortune came, without saying any thing to father, and applied for the situation, and this morning I received an answer, filled with the most flattering expressions of kindness, and offering very liberal terms.”

“You do not seriously mean that you intend teaching?” said my brother, in a tone that deepened the flush on Hattie’s cheek.

“Certainly I do. Why should I not make my acquirements available. I intend to ‘improve my talents,’ and as that old-fashioned Jewish coin is not current in this country, I must exchange it for something that will pass more readily. I am quite delighted, too, with the terms Miss W—— offers me, though I fear I shall not be worth so much money. She says, if I will let part of the salary go to pay Lizzy’s school-bills, she will give me five hundred dollars a year, on condition that I engage to remain two years.”

“That will be about four hundred dollars in money,” said I, musingly; “yes, that is quite good pay, to be sure; but, then, what will your father and mother do without you for two years—have they consented to your plans?”

“They have, after some opposition. They will be very much alone, but I shall depend upon your kindness to cheer their lonely hours, and your brother will perhaps spend an evening with father occasionally,” added she, glancing timidly at Fred, who was drumming on the table with a very dissatisfied air.

“When do you leave?” asked my mother.

“To-morrow,” she answered, rising; “and that reminds me that I have not yet told you, Mary, that I came to request your assistance to-day in making my final preparations. I did not expect to go so soon, and have many little things to arrange before I leave.”

“Why do you go to-morrow?”

“In order to be there at the commencement of the next term—you will come, wont you?”

I promised to be with her in a short time, and she departed; and Fred, after putting salt into his coffee, and mustard on his bread, in a vain attempt to finish his breakfast, took his hat in desperation, and went out after her.

“Miss Atherton,” said he earnestly, as he overtook her, “let me persuade you to give up this scheme—we can’t spare you for two years.”

“I am quite astonished at opposition from you, Mr. Stanley,” said Hattie, in some confusion at his earnest manner. “It is but a few weeks since we had that long talk about woman’s duties and powers of usefulness. You remember what you said then?”

“Yes; but with you,” replied Fred, in a low tone, “with you it is ‘to gild refined gold, to paint the lily.’”

A long silence followed, for both were too much agitated to speak, when Fred repeated, “Do give up this plan—there is no need of it. I have written your brother to draw on me for any amount he may need to complete his education.”

“You are very kind,” said Hattie, tremulously, and her soft eyes were filled with a dewy light, as for a moment they met his impassioned gaze. Just then they reached the garden-gate, and in attempting to unlatch it at the same time, their hands met. The touch thrilled through each frame like an electric shock. Fred took her hand and drew it within his arm as they proceeded up the walk.

“If I could only persuade you,” said he, “how gratified I am to be of service to you. If you could have the faintest adequate idea how necessary is your presence to my happiness—how I have lived for weeks, months, only in the hope that I might one day tell you how fervently my whole soul loves you. Oh, dear Miss Atherton, is it all in vain?”

There was no reply, but the small, trembling hand that rested on his arm, placed itself in the hand that lay near it, and nestled there, as if it would cling forever. A glad, hopeful smile sprung to his lips. “Harriet—dear Harriet, you will let me love you?”

Again those expressive eyes were raised to his, and her heart spoke through them, as her low dear tones answered, “I will love you.”

“And you will not leave me—you will be my wife—you will give me the right to assist your brother?”

“Some time hence, but not now. You must not strive to break my resolution. I trust in you fully, and the words you have just spoken, are to me like sunshine breaking through the clouds that have enveloped my life; but for Lizzy’s sake, and for George’s, it is best that I should not relinquish my purpose.”

They entered the house and sat down together. All the barriers of doubt and distrust that had separated them were removed, and these two full, strong hearts, were revealed to each other. With all the eloquence of affection, Fred endeavored to convince her that it was not her duty to leave the home that was now more than ever dear to her; but the gentle girl was firm in her noble resolve, and at length her pleadings won from him a reluctant consent to its fulfillment.

The two years, which had seemed so long in the prospective, passed rapidly away, as time always does when one is in the steady performance of duty. Hattie’s visits at home were short and unfrequent, but she won the admiration of her pupils. Lizzy was at school with her, and Fred found so much business to compel him to visit the city, that he was considered quite a public benefactor by certain postage-saving acquaintances, who besieged our door with inquiries when Mr. Stanley would go to B——, and would he take a package?

It was the evening before the wedding-day. The sisters had returned three months before, and George had been some time at home, and was soon to be ordained as pastor over the church where for generations his fathers had worshiped. Having assisted Lizzy in arranging the bridal paraphernalia for to-morrow morning’s ceremony, I went down stairs to bid Hattie good-night before I went home. She was standing by the window, with her head leaning on Fred’s shoulder. One of his arms was around her, and with the other he was holding back the curtain that the brilliant moonlight might fall full on the beautiful face that was raised to his with an expression of confiding affection. A sudden recollection flashed upon my mind, and crossing the room, I threw my arms around them as they stood together, and said to my brother, “Fred, have you found out what there is to like in Hattie Atherton?”

“I have found,” replied Fred, drawing her fondly to his heart, “that there is every thing in her to like except her name; she will change that to-morrow, and then she will be perfect.”





’Twere vain, dear Mary, to attempt

  To sound your praise in rhyme;

Though oft I’ve gazed upon your face,

  You’re fairer every time.


The stars are bright—but your sweet eyes,

  Are lovelier far than they,

And diamonds, were they half as sweet,

  Have scarce a brighter ray.


And, oh, such winning fondness lies,

  In your gay, gladsome smile,

I scarce can look on you, and think

  I do not dream the while.


And then your form—light as the air,

  And perfect as a fairy;

Though many strive for beauty’s prize,

  None can compare with Mary.


Oh, Mary, may thy future life,

  Be bright, as thou art now,

And not a shade of sorrow rest,

  Upon thy snow-white brow.


And when thy gentle spirit soars,

  From its abode of love,

Oh, may it leave this world of cares,

  To dwell with God above.





My beautiful—my beautiful,

  Upon thy baby brow,

The stern, relentless hand of death

  Has placed his signet now!

The golden threads that span thy life,

  Are breaking, one by one;

Let me not hold his spirit back⁠—

  Oh, God! thy will be done!


My beautiful—my beautiful!

  Thy life has been a dream;

A moment more, and it has passed,

  Like sunshine on a stream;

Or like a bud, whose perfumed leaves

  Unfolded for an hour,

To gaze with rapture on its God⁠—

  Then droop beneath his power.


My beautiful—my beautiful!

  I would not call thee back;

I joy that thou hast fled the storms

  That beat upon life’s track;

I love to know thy sinless soul

  Has burst its bonds of clay,

And watch thy spirit as it glides

  So pleasantly away.


And when I gather up the folds

  Around thy pale, cold face,

And when I weep to see thee laid

  In thy last resting-place,

I’ll mind me that the fearful storm

  By which my soul is riven,

Has borne my dove an olive branch,

  And wafted him to Heaven.






“She never told her love, but deep

  Within her heart concealed there lay

The worm that prey’d upon her cheek,

  And stole her bloom away.”


Mary Wilson was an only child. Her parents were exceedingly wealthy; and, though possessing extended landed estates, they were as parsimonious in hoarding up riches as though they were only in moderate circumstances. Mr. Wilson was rather aristocratic in his manners, yet, in many respects, he was quite liberal to those of his neighbors who were not as fortunate as himself in accumulating property. He was a gentleman of great influence, around whom gathered the elite of Cincinnati—whose favor was courted and sought by the wealthy and great. In his earlier days Mr. Wilson had laid out the rules which were to govern him through the world, and, in whatever circumstance in life, he fully resolved to abide by the course he had adopted for his guidance. He had retired from the active capacity of a business man; and yet, whenever he found an opportunity for speculating, he was just the man to engage in it.

About the time our story commences, the fever of speculation in the Western States raged to a marvelous extent. The excitement was great, and many had invested their whole patrimony in the speculation, with the ardent assurance that they would become immensely wealthy. But, alas! their expectations were but “castles in the air;” for the excitement soon subsided, and those who had invested their all in purchasing land, now found, to their great astonishment, that they had lost all they possessed. Many who were independent one day, and had the brightest anticipations of the future, the next were penniless and destitute, not knowing where or how to procure a sustenance for their families.

Among the most unfortunate in this respect was Mr. Wilson. He had invested all—even to the last dollar—of his immense possessions; he had bought lands at an exorbitant price; but he was perfectly satisfied that in the speculation he would make his thousands. His wife and daughter remonstrated against his entering so largely into the meshes of the excitement, and of involving himself to so great an extent; but he was too deeply resolved upon making money to pay the least regard to their remonstrances. He endorsed largely for others, and appeared lost in the agitation which existed. Speculation was the all-absorbing topic—with him it was a sort of magic, which usurped his entire thoughts, and, to a great degree, restrained his manly virtues. But soon his dreams and anticipations received a relapse, the effect of which had a serious impression upon his feelings. The day of speculation had passed, and the entire capital which Mr. Wilson had invested, was gone! He had lost all! he was reduced to poverty! Many others shared the same fate. Wealthy citizens were stripped of all their property; many of whom, who had not lost all in speculating, were sufferers from the evil consequences of endorsing for others. In short, a depression of business ensued seldom witnessed in a commercial city.

Reduced to want, Mr. Wilson’s ambition was gone! his pride preventing him from engaging in any ordinary business; and his constitution too feeble for manual labor, he felt keenly sensible of the unpleasantness of his situation. He knew not what to do! His splendid mansion—the home of his childhood, whose hallowed associations filled his heart with happiness—had been given up, to satisfy the demands of the law; his furniture was sold; and still unliquidated claims pressed daily and heavily upon him for payment. Friends who, in the days of his prosperity, flocked to his hospitable board, now shunned him, as one whom they regarded as their inferior, both in point of wealth and respectability. Mr. Wilson observed the change with the keenest sense of injustice, and now felt how painful it was to be thought inferior to his fellow-man.

Mary was a girl of uncommon pretensions, whose amiable disposition and beauty attracted to her side a host of admirers, who, in their prosperous days, sought to rival each other for her hand—among whom was Charles Tomlinson, the son of a wealthy merchant of Cincinnati. Charles was a young man of rare talents, prepossessing deportment, and affable disposition. He possessed all the qualities of a noble, generous-hearted man; but, notwithstanding the purity of his daily “walk and conversation,” he had imbibed many vague sentiments in regard to the Bible and the precepts taught in that holy book. Mary observed this, and felt pained to see so much talent wasted in useless attempts to prove the Bible false; but yet she loved him. Their attachment daily grew stronger, until they were betrothed, and the day appointed for the consummation of their vows. Before, however, the time for their marriage arrived, Mr. Wilson’s misfortune came, the tendency of which was an entire revolution in the feelings of Mr. Tomlinson. He now resolved that he would not marry her, because her father had failed, and, in all probability, would never be worth a dollar again. With this resolution on his mind, he was at a loss in what way to acquaint her of his determination, or how he could honorably release himself from his engagement. He had too little fortitude to unmask his change of sentiment to her, personally; and to do so by letter would betray a want of manliness, which he had the reputation of possessing. In the midst of this trying situation, he called to his assistance a friend, in whom he had placed the utmost confidence, and to whom he had entrusted the transaction of much important business. To this friend Mr. Tomlinson gave instructions how to proceed, directing him at the same time to use the utmost caution in the information he wished to convey. His name was Samuel Gordon.



“She seldom smiled—and when she did,

  It was so sad, subdued, and brief,

As though her mourning heart she’d chide,

  And strove to smile away its grief.”


The attachment between Tomlinson and Miss Wilson, thus far, had been secretly kept from her parents, they preferring to make it known but a few weeks previously to their marriage-day. But Mrs. Wilson, with the watchfulness of a mother, perceived their intimacy, and, in a gentle manner, addressed her thus:

“Mary, for some time past I have noticed rather more than a friendly intimacy between you and Mr. Tomlinson, and, as a mother, I feel it my duty to give you advice on the subject. I would not do aught to give you pain; but I am not favorable to the addresses of Mr. Tomlinson.”

Miss Wilson, deeming it no longer prudent to keep the truth of the matter concealed from her mother, replied:

“Dear mother, I hope you will forgive my rashness, for we have long since been engaged. I hope you will overlook my disobedience.”

Their conversation was broken off by a quick ring of the bell, and Mary hastened to the door to respond to the call.

“I have a message from Mr. Tomlinson, and wish to see Miss Wilson alone for a few moments,” said the stranger.

“I am Miss Wilson. What is your business with me, sir?” she asked.

“I have,” he continued, “unfortunately to announce to you that Mr. Tomlinson, since he has lost so much in the misfortunes which have fallen on so many of the citizens of this city, deems it, at present, a rash undertaking to marry, while circumstances of such an aggravating character continue. I think it would be better for you to be as calm as possible, and wait with due patience until a more favorable turn of fortune, which I anticipate will not be very long.”

Had an ice-bolt entered the heart of that young girl, it could not have had a much greater effect. His words fell upon her ears like the solemn knell of all her hopes; for, since their misfortunes, she had fondly supposed that her marriage with Mr. Tomlinson would, in a great measure, retrieve the reputation of her father. She could not believe that Mr. Tomlinson would be guilty of such duplicity, and thought a stranger had imposed upon her. But how he, stranger as he was, knew any thing in regard to their engagement, was something more than she could solve—an enigma which cost her much anxiety and thought; for even her parents, until that moment, had not known it. Her mother saw the hectic flush mantle the cheek of her child, and felt conscious that something serious would be the consequence. That Mary loved Tomlinson was unmistakable. She read it in the deep blue of her eyes; she saw it in every lineament of her features; she discovered it in all her actions; and, with the sympathy of a mother’s own feelings, she endeavored to console her in that, her “hour of need.” But the effect was too much for her delicate constitution to bear. She “loved not wisely, but too well;” and, day after day, she sat pensively surveying the beautiful scenery before her, and silently reflecting on her own unhappy condition.

“Her silvery voice was heard no more⁠—

  She sang not, and her breathing late,

Which never knew neglect before,

  Now lies alone—forgotten, mute!

Or, if a passing strain she rang,

  So mournfully its numbers rose,

That those who heard might deem she sang

  A lorn soul’s requiem to repose!”

On a lovely autumn evening, just as the sun was shedding its last rosy beams on the tops of the surrounding hills, Mary looked from her chamber window, and drank in, at a glance, the golden glories of expiring day, and thought how calm it would be for her to die as sweetly as the sun was sinking to rest behind the hills, so that her memory might live, like the beauteous twilight, long after her frail body had mouldered again to dust. She called her mother to her side, and told her that she was dying! At such a beautiful hour, when the day began to close, and shadows were no longer broad-cast from the clouds, but were stretched along the surface of the earth by the interception of a tree, or hill-side, Mary breathed her last!

As these precious but fleeting scenes pass like sober thoughts across the face of earth, or intermingle side by side with gay and brilliant passages of light of equal evanescence, making all tender and beautiful, which otherwise had been lustrous and sparkling, they call up within the heart the memory of the past; and by an association we can scarcely trace, characters reappear of friends who have passed away before us.

Thus ended the life of Mary Wilson. Struck down in the vigor and bloom of youth, this young maiden has left many friends to mourn her loss. She was much esteemed; so much so, that every personal defect was forgotten in the charms of her spirit, with which she imparted to her friends a look of kindness and a blessing.

“Yon willow shades a marble stone,

  On which the curious eye can tell

That underneath there lieth one

  Who loved not wisely—but too well.”





Hah! for the tide of the blood’s hot gush—

Hah! for the throng or proud thoughts that rush,

Reckless and riotous—why should they be

Iced by thy frown, Reality?


Give, give me back the early joy

  Of youth’s warm hopes, of vows believed⁠—

Again, again a dreaming boy

  Let me be happy—though deceived.



they say, is but a name,

And woman’s love a meteor flame,

That feedeth upon fancy’s breath

A little while, then perisheth.

Out, out upon thee—out on thee!

Thou hideous hag, Reality.


Hah! tears again! dost ask me why

  The tear upon this burning cheek,

The half repressed, yet bursting sigh?

  The tear, the sigh, themselves must speak;

Must tell a tale of by-gone hours,

  A vision of all fair and bright⁠—

When my young path was strewn with flowers,

  And every throb was of delight.

When joys were of each moment’s birth,

  Nor care, nor doubt, an instant stole

From days of ever-changeful mirth,

  That changeless shone upon the soul.

When hopes, that in mist-distance gleaming,

  In promise e’en outvied the past,

Came ever, halcyon heralds seeming,

  Of peace and bliss for aye to last.


But where is now the sportive wile

  Of youth—so guileless and so gay⁠—

The soul of love, of fire—the smile,

  That spoke that soul—oh! where are they?

Of days that could such joys impart

  What now remains? Their memory⁠—

A cheerless, blasted youth—a heart

  That breaketh fast, though silently.

And those proud hopes so fondly cherished,

  Have they too proved, like Friendship, breath?

Ay, one by one, they all have perished⁠—

  Yet no—not all—there yet is death!

There yet remains to choose some spot,

  Where, far from man and scorn, to lie⁠—

And there, unheeded and forgot,

  Alone—oh! God—alone to die.


Who talks of dying, while around

  The earth’s so fair, the sky so bright?

With Folly’s wreath let day be crowned,

  And Mirth and Music rule the night.

Another chord—the purple hills

  Are bowing to the yellow vales⁠—

The vales are smiling to the rills⁠—

  The rills make music for the gales,

That with the sunbeams twining hands,

  Through groves and meads and streams are glancing

Adown the lanes, and on the sands

  Of brave old Ocean madly dancing.

And brave old Ocean roareth so

  His honest laugh, to see those Misses,

The pretty flow’rets bending low,

  As though to shun the wired-god’s kisses.


Kisses—hah! hah!—around this string

  Of other days what memories twine⁠—

Bring, merry comrades, quickly bring

  Youth-giving and song-making wine.

Fill, fill—on the faithful brim

  Pile up the sparkling flood⁠—

Drink, drink, till the living stream

  Run conqueror through the blood.

Drink to the hill, the vale,

  The stream and its jeweled brink,

To the warming ray and the cooling gale,

  To earth and to ocean drink.

Drink to each thing that seems

  Or loving or glad to be—

Nor wait to ask if those joyous beams

  Be nature’s hypocrisy.


I’ve quaffed the brimming bowl

  In mirth’s and madness’ hours⁠—

And drenched my thirsty soul

  In goblets crowned with flowers.

Of draughts so pure as this

  ’Tis luxury to sip,

But draught of purer bliss

  Doth dwell on woman’s lip.


I’ve felt the glowing sun

  Steal warmly to my heart’s

Faint throbs, when gazing on

  The skies of southern parts.

But oh! a sun more bright,

  A purer, warmer sky,

Of joy-embathing light,

  Is found in woman’s eye.


’Neath holy Music’s spell

  Hath lain each dream-rapt sense,

While on my spirit fell

  Its gushing eloquence.

But oh! a spell there is

  More potent to rejoice—

The soothing lowliness

  Of woman’s whispered voice.


Then wonder not, if now

  To her I pledge this cup,

To whom my earliest vow

  First sent its incense up—

To her—the soul of verse,

  Our hope, when hope-bereft—

Our blessing ’neath the curse—

  Our all of Eden left.


Give, give me back the early joy

  Of youth’s strong hopes, of vows believed⁠—

Again, again a dreaming boy

  Let me be happy, though deceived.

For who hath caught the answering sigh

  Heaving sweet woman’s timid breast,

His longing soul fed on her eye,

  And learned the rapture to be blest⁠—

In lingering dalliance now to sip,

  In boldness now of ardor roving,

To drink from eye, cheek, forehead, lip,

  Of one beloved, and seeming loving.

Upon the tell-tale cheek to breathe,

Closer the clasping hands to wreathe,

As if no earthly power could sever

The bosoms met, as met forever⁠—

While each responsive fluttering heart,

  Beating as though ’twould gladly break

  To tell the joy that tongue ne’er spake,

Longs from its heaving breast to part,

Nearer and nearer still to press

The soul of its soul’s happiness.

Oh! who has felt around his soul

  The spells of this idolatry⁠—

And wished not that his days should roll

  Thus spell-bound to eternity.


Away with wisdom—’tis a cheat⁠—

  Away with truth—’tis all a lie⁠—

Madness alone hath no deceit⁠—

  Falsehood alone no mockery.







The town or borough of Harrisburg, the political capital of Pennsylvania, lies on the bank of the Susquehanna, about 107 miles west of Philadelphia. I say on the bank, not the shore; for here a bold bluff rises a few yards from the northern margin of the river, and the town is, therefore, from ten to fifteen feet above the stream—a fact of consequence to the inhabitants; as the Susquehanna, which, in summer, may be easily forded by children, will frequently, during the spring freshets, rise from six to eight feet, threatening all upon its borders. The houses are built only on the north side of this front street, so as to face the river and leave, besides the beautiful avenue, a handsome esplanade in front of the town, overlooking the river.

Few places can present a more delightful promenade than this front of Harrisburg; and the writer hereof has more than once sought to express his appreciation of the walk and the gorgeousness of the views to be enjoyed therefrom. The scene is ever fresh—ever delightsome, to one who has an eye for the beautiful of nature, and a heart to be warmed into the enjoyment of that beautiful. No frequency of indulgence palls the appetite here—no change of season diminishes the attraction. Whether the stream murmurs round the projecting rock and over masses of pebbles that mark its bed and are visible in summer, or whether the current dashes deep and bold, fed by the melting snows of the upper mountains, it is beautiful; beautiful in its simple exhibition—beautiful in its terrible grandeur. Whether the setting sun steeps the current in liquid, tremulous light, or the wild, tempestuous blasts of January heap up the waters in dark and chaffing masses, all is beautiful; and men go forth to gaze in quiet enjoyment on the peaceful flow of July, or to enrich and stimulate their feelings with the all-conquering power of the down-rushing torrent of March.

Indulging in dreamy pleasure one morning late in June, while contemplating the loveliness of the scene, I cast my eyes away to the mountains through which the river forces its course a few miles above the town, and was delighted to see the first evidences of the rising sun in the yellow light that tinged the topmost peaks of those mighty promontories, while heavy wreaths of mist, engendered on the ground below, were rolling upward, like giants anxious to bathe early in the sunlight—an enjoyment that must have cost them existence, or, perhaps, only present visibility.

I can now recall some of the reflections to which the magnificent scene gave rise. Those children of the mist, that tended upward, were they only imaginary beings? only the workmanship of my fancy, upon the crude materials that sprung up from the fens? or were those misty shapes indeed the essential forms of spirits, whose tendencies were upward—who, though dragged downward by the grossness of their outward covering, which affected its home and would abide in its cold, dark birth-place, struggled upward to the light and heat, and were released from the clogging properties of the visible and the impure, while they put on the invisible and the purified?

I knew the law of physics, by which the ascensive power of matter is augmented by heat, and consequently felt that some of those who were sleeping in the vicinity, would have referred all those misty images of the mountains to well known and always occurring circumstances. I admit that natural causes produce just such effects as the ascension of these wreaths of mist. But may not He who enacts the laws by which all these events occur, connect also the state, habits and tendencies of some class of beings with the operation of those laws? Because the sun gives light and heat to the system of which it is the centre, because we know that it riseth and goeth down, and because we can calculate the influence of its light and heat upon our planet, does it follow that the same body may not be the home of millions of rational beings, who would laugh if told that we, mundane men, thought that luminous body made for the convenience of the earth?

I was calculating the effect upon one who should, while standing on that mountain, venture to address these wreathy forms, and find himself understood and answered, when the presence of a person whom I had once or twice seen, at the peep of dawn,

“Brushing, with hasty steps, the dew away,”

renewed a resolution of putting to him a question as to the origin of a certain enclosure in the vicinity. There was, between the upper bank and the edge of the river, directly in front of the town, a small enclosure, perhaps fifteen feet square, surrounded by a decaying board fence, and having in it two miserably looking Lombardy poplars, touched with all the squalidness of decay which characterizes the age of that short-lived tree. Brambles, too, had sprung up in the enclosure, and they covered a small rising of the ground, with some invisible emblems. My object was to know why such a place was allowed in front of the town; why it was made, and why thus continued.

“That,” said my friend, “is the grave of old Mr. Harris, for whom the town was named, long before they thought of building the capitol yonder. But there is a long story connected with the matter, and you can learn the whole of it if you will call, with proper motives and in a proper manner, upon a descendant of the old patriarch who resides in the neighborhood.”

Now, I saw in this man some signals of fancy, and I felt determined to get the story out of him. But he professed to be in too much haste; he had his day’s work to perform, and he had almost forgotten the story. But I persevered with him and obtained some account, which, after eleven years, I put on paper, not venturing to quote my friend for authority, telling the story not exactly as ’twas told to me, but as I recollect and reconstruct the narrative.

Mr. Harris was one of the pioneers of Pennsylvania. He saw the country rich and beautiful before him, and “went forth and stood and measured the earth” in and around the place where now stands the borough which bears his name. The beauty of scenery, the delicate softness of the valley contrasting with the towering summits of the mountains around, made the place exceedingly desirable. He, like the men of his times, had an eye for the beautiful, and a far-reaching ken that took in the future with the present; and so he sat down on the shores of the Susquehanna, on what was then perhaps an island, though now a part of the main land.

Mr. Harris was a man of the world—I mean what I say—he was emphatically a man of the world. Calmly and coolly had he, in his youth, sat down to reflect upon the policy which would best subserve the purposes which he had in view; and, after mature deliberation, he came to the conclusion that the precepts of his mother were well founded, and that however much the gay might ridicule, or the short-sighted neglect, the rules which she had prescribed, and which she had made him, in boyhood, follow—on the whole, “to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly,” would serve the affairs of a long life as well as they would produce effects after death. So, Mr. Harris sat down on the banks of the Susquehanna, an honest man from habit—an honest man from principle; a Christian by birth—a Christian by all his actions. He had nothing Utopian in his views, nothing impracticable in his plans. If he bought or sold, it was with a view to his own advantage in the transaction, and neither white man nor red man could outbargain him; but either white man or red man would be welcome to all that his wants required at his hands; and those who failed to get one quart of meal more than he would allow in trade, found no difficulty in procuring a peck whenever their necessities appealed to his feelings of charity rather than to his rule of business.

The means of the founder of the settlement had been somewhat diminished by an act of goodness, which few could appreciate at the time. A stout black man was about to be torn from his wife to be sent into slavery at the South. The ability of the slave enhanced his price, while his goodness of heart made the separation more intolerable to him. The wife was free—should she go into voluntary slavery in order to follow her husband? and if she did, who could tell her that the first inducement to the owner to sell her husband might not result in a separation, which no sacrifice on her part could prevent, nor could it mitigate the evils thereof. In this state Pompey appealed to Mr. Harris; he promised fidelity, industry and gratitude; Mr. Harris saw that he could prevent misery, and he paid the price of the man, and thus became his owner.

“Massa Harris,” said the delighted black, as he saw the accomplishment of his heart’s desire, “I’ll do something for this by and by.”

“What will you do, Pompey?”

“Don’t know, massa; but guess ’twill come sometime or other.”

Pompey formed a part of Mr. Harris’s establishment in his small settlement upon the Susquehanna, and by his light heartedness and his labor, seemed to repay all obligations which his purchase devolved upon him. He had a song for the youngsters who visited the place, and he could dance with the Indians that resided a short distance above; and whether in the field or at the mill, he was trustworthy, active, industrious, and never for a moment did his worthy master find cause to regret his purchase.

“Done enough for to-day?” would Pompey inquire.

“You have done more, Pompey, than I directed, and you have done it well; and excepting your habit of singing foolish songs, and dancing like a madman among the Indians and squaws that come down from the Juniata, I have been well compensated for your cost.”

“But I have not done that,” said Pompey.

“I tell you, Pompey, that I require only the discharge of ordinary duties; I do not expect you will meet with any occasion for any extraordinary effort in my behalf.”

“Well, well, massa—it will come, bym’by, I tell you.”

The peaceful, gentle manners of Mr. Harris had their effect upon Pompey’s movements, but not to the extent which the master desired. The servant was honest, industrious, and did all the work that was required at his hands, but he could not pretermit his sport. The day of gloom closed with Pompey when Mr. Harris saved him from the sale to the South and the separation from his wife, and Pompey felt a sort of devotion in his wild, irregular dances and his loud, shrill singing. His spirits rose with every recollection of the kindness, and, as he broke into a verse of some favorite song or shuffled out upon the hard earth with bare heels the time of a quickly moving tune, he felt that he was only giving expression to gratitude for his kind master; and who shall say that the offering of the joyous black was not made acceptable above, by the sincerity of the feelings in which it was presented?

It was a clear star-light evening of July, the moon had not risen, and the planetary worlds above seemed to magnify themselves in the absence of the great source of day; a gentle draft of air down the stream was felt, and occasionally a rustling among the foliage was caused by the wind, augmented into a temporary breeze. The whole bank of the river was covered with tall forest trees, save where Mr. Harris’s little settlement was placed. On a bold bluff, now washed away, but which then jutted out into the stream, as if for the site of some defensive works, stood a female. She had been long looking up into the firmament, and then casting her eyes around, as if expecting some one to share with her the “contemplation of the starry heavens.”

The young woman stepped forward and looked down upon the waters below her for some time, and then murmured: “They are now, as in years past, above and below—the glorious constellations shining on, and year after year returning, with all their train rich in their lustre, and surveying themselves in the waters beneath. But we change. Year after year passes, and my fathers’ race, if they appear at all, present themselves in diminished numbers and in wasting forms. The foot of the white man is on the soil, and he treats us as he does the forest trees. Where he finds our race convenient, he leaves them to perish for want of communion with their like; where he needs their lands, he strikes them down as cumberers of the ground; and I, who love the race—I dwell among the pale faces, in peace; nay, I dwell among them of choice. I love their people, and I reverence the precepts by which some of them are governed—by which all profess to be guided. Oh, spirit of my fathers! must all pass away like the wreaths of mountain mist, and, as they fall, shall it be the disgrace of their name that vice, and not vengeance, swept them from the earth?

“Oh, what is this new principle which the whites have infused into my soul—the means and condition of future happiness? What is it that bids me forbear the wish that I was a man—a chief among my fathers’ people, that I might chase the intruder from our hunting-grounds, and restore to our nation the land which was purchased by trinkets and baubles, costless to the whites and useless to the red men? What is that principle that bids me, nay makes me, pray for the good of the whites around me, and look to the destruction of my father’s race as a means of that good?

“I cannot tell. And the teachings of the whites concerning the requirements of their own religion, become dark and confused when they attempt to reconcile their practice with their precepts; at least, those who teach most do most confound. But Father Harris, who has little to say, how good are all his deeds! how like the shining of those stars upon the water is his benevolence to my race! beautiful in itself, and reflected in the hearts of the red men with constant lustre. Oh, if all were like him! but then—”

“Then what, Dahona?”

The interruption was caused by a young man who had followed the speaker to a place of frequent resort.

“Then what, Dahona?”

“Nay, William, nay, do not call me Dahona; at least, do not call me thus in this place—do not call me thus when you find me alone—when the wildness of the scene begets wildness of thought, and the breeze which comes down from the hunting-grounds of my fathers, seems to fan into a flame the lingering sparks of native fire which civilization, as yet, has not quenched. Do not, by such a name, call up my almost buried thoughts of those who owned these lands when the white men were enjoying that which they stole from their conquered enemies; do not tell me, in the midst of these returning pangs of pride and regret—do not by that name tell me, that I am the daughter of a chief killed upon his own hills; and when I would calm down those feelings of vengeance, which come with longer intervals, do not, with the name of Dahona, goad me on to those wishes which must be sinful, for they are unjust to Father Harris.”

“Well, then, my dear Rebecca, if all the whites were like Father Harris, what then?”

“They are not all like him. Those who taught me to read and write, and who tried to teach me to pray, are not like him. They talked of the equality of man, and yet treated me as the child of a monster. Father Harris knows that I am human, like himself, and he treats me as if I was immortal, as he is.”

“Well, should not the virtues of such a man redeem from censure a thousand offending whites?”

“Perhaps so, William—I think so now; but there are times—moments like some which I pass alone on this point of land—in which the virtues of that good man seem to me a motive for vengeance upon him. Were he like others, the red man could strike; were he like others, I could strike; if, instead of kindness, which demands gratitude, and constant care and parental watchfulness, which beget affection, he had treated me as other whites treat my race, it might be long ere the hunting-fields of the tribe submitted to the plough. But the virtues of the whites subdue the feelings of the Indians, and the vices of the whites destroy the race. And yet, William, Father Harris, with all this virtue, forbids our union!”

Forbids it, Rebecca, but does not hinder it.”

“Not hinder it? Does he not hinder it by his refusal to sanction it?”

“May we not go down to the lower settlement and be married, as others are?”

“Will that procure his consent, William?”

“No; but, of course, it will be followed by his pardon.”

“Alas, William, even the poor theology of my native tribe forbids the hope of pardon for a sin committed in the hope of pardon.”

“But he has no right, Rebecca, to prevent our happiness by his refusal to sanction the union.”

“He has over me the right of a father, and shall never complain of a want of obedience. I may suffer by his refusal, but if he is wrong he must bear the consequences. No, William, no. I have told you that I would marry none other than you; but I will not marry you without the consent of Father Harris while he lives, with power to give or to withhold that consent.”

“His reasons are insufficient.”

“Nay, William, say not that; though he has not told me his reasons, I think I comprehend them. In the first place, you are the son of his old friend and relative; can the strong prejudices of your race be appeased, if you should marry the daughter of an Indian? It is true that I was a princess; and the whites whom I met at the school in the city, always appeared to worship those of royal blood, and I do not know that the crown of the parent country might not devolve upon the head of a man or woman as black and as curly as our Pompey, if such an one should, by the accidents of taste and the favor of the right creed, fall into the channel of succession by an admitted marriage. That strong prejudice, I am persuaded, influences Father Harris.”

“But it does not influence me, Rebecca; and why should it? Associated with the best of our people in the city, you have acquired their habits; you have, with all the delicacy of your sex, twice the learning that can be boasted of by many of ours; and if⁠—”

“Yes, yes, William; you mean by ‘if,’ that if I had ceased to feel, and sometimes act, like an Indian, then—But I have not ceased to feel and to act, sometimes, like my father’s child; and all the learning which the whites have imparted, seems only to enable me to appreciate more correctly the sufferings and wrongs of my people; and if it were not for the gentle teaching of that Quaker woman—nay, the teaching rather of the spirit by which she is influenced—I should, perhaps, make my knowledge a means of vengeance. But, William, there is another cause, founded on sound policy, for the refusal of Father Harris.”

“And what is that?”

“I am the daughter of a chief of a tribe that scarcely thinks of peace; and when my father was tortured by his conquering foes—tortured to death, but not to a groan—and my mother was struck down by the hatchet of a warrior of the tribe above us, I was redeemed from captivity by Father Harris—saved from a miserable death—treated, educated and loved by him as his child. While I am here, it may be that the warriors of my tribe will respect his settlement; if I should marry you, the tribe above, always friendly, might grow jealous of the connection.”

“There is more of worldly policy in that than Mr. Harris is wont to exercise,” said William.

“Let us be content,” said Rebecca “with his decision for the present. He who has always intended right, cannot long persist in wrong.”

The dialogue of the lovers became less and less argumentative, and was soon changed from that of an educated, high-minded woman and a deferential young man, to the gentle intercourse of two lovers—more pleasing to themselves, though perhaps less interesting to my readers. The moon had risen, and the light of its diminished form was dancing on the ripples of the river, and lay broad and lovely upon the side of the mountain above.

“What was that sound?” asked Rebecca, with evidence of fear. “Surely some one is abroad.”

“It was only a deer, or some such animal, on the other side of the river.”

“But, William, the deer does not move thus by night, unless alarmed by the hunter or some animal. Let us return; we may be injured, even on this side the river.”

The pair withdrew to the little settlement; and as they passed one of the out-houses, they discovered, through the interstices of the logs of which it was constructed, the white teeth and shining eyes of Pompey, who, not having any love affair on hand, was very willing to have a laugh at “Massa William,” or a little knowing wink at Rebecca, the next day.

Rebecca was soothed to repose by the quiet of her conscience and the healthful, gentle influence of the prayer with which she sanctified her little chamber—prayer that included blessings upon the head of her benefactor, her early friend and father—prayer that expressed confidence and love for Him who was her “Father in Heaven.” The noise of the river, hastening downward in its eternal course, was lulling, and in the strong light which the moon poured through the little window of her chamber, the enthusiastic girl seemed to find the forms of guardian angels; and she sunk to sleep in the confidence that she was in the care of Heaven.

And was she not? What but Heaven provided for her the ample affection of Harris? What but Heaven made his teachings operative upon her conduct? What threw across the dark mind of the Indian girl the light of Christian truth?—a light whose reflection was certainly tinged with a portion of the hues of the object which it reached, but which still was Christian light, doing its perfect work and effecting, by constant operation, the character, condition and habits of Rebecca.

It was but a short time before daylight that the young sleeper, who had retired to rest in the consciousness of Heaven’s guardianship, was alarmed by loud cries, and on looking abroad she saw that one building of the little hamlet was wrapped in flames, while the wild yells of the savages told the poor girl what was the cause of the danger, and left little doubt as to its extent; and she knew, too, that the savage intruders were the people of her own tribe. Scarcely had she thrown a few clothes around her, and wrapped herself about with a blanket from her bed, when the voice of Pompey, as he passed her window, was heard. One sentence only did the poor fellow utter:

“Save all the time you can, Miss Rebecca!”

In two minutes more the little settlement was surrounded by the savages. William, who had been aroused later than the black, sought to save Mr. Harris, but failed, and seeing no chance of escaping through the line of Indians, he rushed into the room of Rebecca, and opening a small door took refuge in a cellar beneath.

Rebecca, it was known, incurred little personal risk. She was of the tribe of the invaders; and vengeance upon the whites, and the spoliation of their goods, were the objects of the attack.

Scarcely had William reached his hiding-place when the chief of the small tribe of invaders presented himself at the door of Rebecca’s room, and demanded William.

“He is not in my room. Do you think men are to be found in my bed-chamber?”

“A white man may be found any where in time of danger,” said the savage. “But I do not care for the fellow; I want to know where Harris has hidden his goods—especially where he has concealed the rum.”

“I do not keep his goods nor hide his rum.”

“But you know where he hides them, and you shall tell me, or I—”

“Or you will kill me—kill a woman! Brave chief! Has the influence of the white man reduced our tribe to that?”

“I did not threaten you, Dahona; but I will strike where you can feel as keenly as on yourself. Tell me where these goods are secreted.”

“I will not; and you dare not take vengeance on me.”

“Look, Dahona, through yonder window!”

The girl turned her eye to the window, and by the broad blaze of the burning building she saw a stake erected, near the river, and numerous savages were heaping around it quantities of wood.

“Is that for me?”

“No—for Harris.”

The young woman checked the exclamation which was rising to her lip:

“And you will release him if I will point out to you the goods; you will do no personal injury to any one, and spare the rest of the property?”

The Indian hesitated; but the lie which seemed to struggle for utterance, against the habits of his race, was spoken:

“I will spare all—”

“And the people of the tribe—will they spare?”

Just then a band of savages was seen conveying Mr. Harris down to the stake.

The spirit of Rebecca was shaken. She did not know, indeed, where any goods were concealed, and the small amount which had been put aside was then brought forward by some of the Indians, who were more occupied with the rum they had secured than with the other articles.

She looked through the window again, and Harris was at the stake, and, with impatient yells, the savages were making ready for the sacrifice.

“Spare him—only spare the life of Harris, and take all!”

“We have all, and now we will consummate the work. Hark ye, Dahona! Harris must suffer the torments to which our captives are condemned. We have been injured by the whites. Your father was our chief—they destroyed him; and whose blood has flowed in revenge? You, the daughter of that chief, have been made to despise the people of your tribe, and to adopt the faith of the whites—a creed that makes one portion cowards—afraid of the life or the death of a warrior—and leaves the other portion to commit what crimes they choose upon the red men.

“Now, hear me, Dahona. It is the creed that makes the man, and not the man the creed; and the influence of your profession of that creed—the devotion which you pay to that book now lying at your feet—are weakening the attachment of our people to their chiefs, and giving power to the whites. Renounce the creed, spurn the book at your feet, and follow your brethren to their hunting grounds, and we will spare Harris.”

“I will follow you whither you wish—take me now; but first release that man.”

“Do you renounce the white man’s creed—will you spurn the Bible in presence of our men?”

A few hours before, the troubled spirit of Rebecca had been moved almost to doubt the truth of the religion into which she had been initiated; but when the question was its renunciation, she felt the hold which it had upon her mind—she showed the hold which it had upon her heart. Could she, with some mental reservation, make the renunciation, and thus save her benefactor’s life? She was not well versed in casuistry, but she knew that religion was of the heart.

“Speak,” said the chief; “the people are waiting my signal.”

“Give me a moment to think.”

“Take it. I will leave you until the messenger returns twice with new combustibles for the old man’s fire.”

The chief closed the door, and Rebecca turned to seek guidance in her troubles.

The savage crew had seized upon the person of Mr. Harris, and dragged him from the house to the place appointed for his torments. A slow fire was to be lighted around him, and his dying moments were to be embittered by their blasphemies, and his pains augmented by the torments which they would inflict before the flame should have done its work.

The good man looked around. William he had heard in the first of the attack, and he now believed him dead. He knew that he had little to fear for Rebecca; her captivity might be irksome, but beyond that they would not injure her. But Pompey, with all his professions, where was he at such a time? How useful he might have been—how consoling, even now, to have seen him near, and to have sent by him messages to his friends. But he was forsaken of all—of all but his enemies; and so he looked upward, to One that had ever been his friend. Release was not to be expected. Mercy, fortitude, resignation—and the good man breathed a fervent prayer.

“The time is up,” said the stern chief, as he opened the door of Rebecca’s chamber. “What say you—life or death to Harris?”

“Let me see my father, even as he is—let me commune with him for one moment, and I will answer.”

The chief led forth the girl; and as he passed two of his men he said, in his own language:

“Watch the house; and when the fire is lighted at the stake, set the house on fire—both the white and black are in it some where. See that none escape.”

Rebecca heard and understood the terrible order.

The young woman ascended the pile, and threw her arms around the neck of Harris.

“My father! my father! must this be?”

“There is no preventive,” said he, “short of a miracle.”

Rebecca sobbed into the ear of her benefactor, the condition of his release.

“They will never release me,” said he; “they may make you an apostate, but they will also make me a martyr.”

“My father, they have sworn the oath that has never yet been violated, when given from Indian to Indian, that they will release you on those conditions.”

“Has that oath never failed?”

“Never—never, my father.”

“Let me not fall into the hands of man,” said the prisoner; “in this hour, God, be my guide and counsel.”

“What is the answer, my father? Remember, your life—your precious life, may be saved, and that of William,” she whispered softly in his ears. “Do not hesitate.”

“I do not hesitate for myself. How, my child, is thy faith?”

“Firm—fixed, my father.”

“Will you renounce it, if by that you could save the life of William and become his wife with my consent?”

“I would not renounce that faith to add one moment to my life. Now, more than ever, do I see and feel its excellency. But you, my father, in whom it shines, may, by a protracted life, disseminate that faith to thousands.”

“Shall I insure the faith of others by my own apostacy? You have my answer.”

Rebecca gave one wild, frantic shriek, and was forced, almost lifeless, from the embraces of Harris.

“And what says Dahona now?”

I will not renounce my faith.

The signal was given, and the men arranged themselves between the river and the stake, and two or three sprung forward and applied their torches to the dry wood; slowly the smoke ascended, and then the blaze crept upward, while the loud shouts of the exulting savages drowned the prayer and groans of Harris and the wild shrieks of Rebecca.

“Apply the tortures,” said the chief, and he sprung forward to give the example; when, suddenly, he pitched forward upon the fire, and the crack of numerous rifles told whence his death had come.

In one minute the ground was filled with Indians of another tribe, and the survivors of the invading band ware escaping down the river.

Through the mingled throng of living, and over the bodies of the dead, sprung one being upon the burning pile, and with a hatchet released the sufferer from his perilous position, as the fire was doing the work which the savages had left unaccomplished.

As the rescuer laid Mr. Harris on the ground, he exclaimed:

Hi! Massa Harris, didn’t I tell you, great while ago, ‘bym by come sometime or odder?’”

Pompey had escaped before the Indians surrounded the house, and knowing the attachment to Mr. Harris of a tribe a short distance above, and their hostility to those who had invaded the settlement, he was sure of aid if he could summons them in season.

The friendly Indians descended the river rapidly in their canoes, and were only in season to save the life of the whites.

William was brought forth wounded, but not dangerously, and the family assembled in prayer and thanksgiving, while their friendly deliverers were discharging some of the minor offices of their calling and celebrating their victory by some characteristic attentions to the wounded whom the enemy had left on the shores of the Susquehanna.

“Did you not hesitate, my child,” said Mr. Harris to Rebecca, “when death or apostacy was proposed?”

“When your death was the alternative, I did.”

“Where, then, was your faith in Christianity—in its author?”

“Father, I am weak. I owe you obligations—I would sacrifice my life for your comforts; I knew you good—I knew you would decide correctly. My faith, then, was in you.”

“In me?”

“In you—in you, oh, my more than father. You are the embodiment of that spirit by which I am guided. My faith in you, then—is it not my faith in the creed which you profess, and by which you live?”

No sooner had William recovered from his wounds, than Mr. Harris called Rebecca to him and signified his consent to the union between her and William, and his determination to make their circumstances as comfortable as the state of the neighborhood would allow.

“It is late, now,” said Rebecca to William; “let us separate. The morrow will require our early attention, and Father Harris will be astir early in the morning.”

“And he not the only one,” said William; “for some of us must go down and bring the magistrate up, to perform the ceremony. We will meet early to-morrow morning.”

Before the dawn of the day fixed on for her marriage, Rebecca left her chamber, and hastened along the banks of the river to the jutting promontory that she so much loved. Leaning there upon the side of a rock, she gave vent to all those feelings which spring up in the heart of a girl who stands upon the verge of marriage. Welling up from that heart were the waters of pure, holy affection for Harris, and of deep, abiding love for William. There was no want of all true feelings—no doubt of the high deservings of her lover. But Rebecca’s education was imperfect; it had never eradicated the strong feelings for her own people; it had led her to see how rapid must be their decay, but it had not made her cling with undivided love to those whose superiority in certain points was exhibiting itself in the destruction of the natives; for she saw that the friendship of the whites was as fatal to the Indians as was their enmity. The lands passed as fast by cession as by conquest, and vices were sent with the wampum of peace as readily as with the weapon of war. And while she felt that she could apply no remedy, or become a preventive, she yet felt for those whose blood was in her veins—whose fathers’ fame had been her glory.

“Oh, children of the forest,” said she, as she bent her eyes upon mountains and table lands above, “ye are passing away like the leaves of autumn. The frosts and the sunshine are alike fatal to you, and ere long you will be known only by your decay. Men will tell of your glories—but who shall see them? Dim shadows yet linger on the forest edge, and I catch the view of half fading forms as I look along the valley of the stream. Are these the spirits of my fathers come to chide me, their daughter, for my apostacy? Alas! what an apostacy is that of their sons, who retain the customs of the tribes, and yet adopt the vices of the whites.”

“The light of another day is springing up, and a thousand shapes are visible; are these spirit-hunters of the red men—do they sanctify the night by their chase? They are not like the red men of those days. Mighty ones they are, and they pursue the mammoth for their sport. But how they depart before the coming light, as their descendants waste in the influence of the arts of the white men!”

“But ought I to wish it otherwise? Will not science make more happy, and religion repay by its influences all the evil which has been brought on its name? Has it done it? Alas! I am distressed. What is to be the effect of all? Are the white men, with their religion, to drive the red men from their possession only to have more ample scope for vice, only to waste each other by the fraud with which they, in most places, overcome the Indians? or is the establishment of both to produce the happiness to all which is promised by their leaders? And are these doubts, these apparent difficulties, the result of my inability to judge of what is to follow, as the vision is now disturbed by the uncertainty of the dawning light, whose perfection will restore all things to their proper appearance?”

“Oh, let me yet, as I shall abide with these conquerors of our people, let me at least acknowledge that it is not they but their religion that detains me. No, deeply as I reverence my Father Harris, and much as I love William, I would join the wasting, the decaying remnant of my tribe; and if I could not revenge their wrongs, I would die with them undisgraced by treachery. But that religion—ah, they hold me there; they have driven from my heart most of the creed of my childhood. Only here and there is found a belief, green, from its association with infancy, but still beautiful, still cherished. While they have erected in my heart the form of their own faith, unfinished yet, but still promising, still sheltering. They have dealt with me as with our forests, in which our tribes had their home, they cut them down, leaving here and there a tree to tell of the things that were, and placing incomplete edifices for their own shelter—edifices that they promise shall be sufficient and beautiful in time.”

The sun was rising above the horizon, and not a cloud stood in his whole pathway to the west. The tops of the mountain caught and reflected its first rays. As the warmth increased, the mists, which had fallen thick toward the base of the hills, began slowly to rise and roll in massive columns upward, or to pass off by the gap through which the river rushes. Rebecca gazed at the scene until her fancy moulded these morning mists into the forms of cherished beings. The whole energies of her tribe seemed to revive within her, and all of the wild and the unearthly that distinguished the dreams of her childhood rushed back upon her mind.

“I see you all,” said she, “chiefs, warriors and women. I know ye now; every one has his form, and ye are returning from the hunting-field of spirits. Ye return mournful, though borne down with game; sad, for ye cross the fields which the whites have torn from your descendants; angry, for a child of a warrior is to be of those who are your enemies—and yonder group of little ones, they are my brothers and sisters, airy ones now, but happy in the mimic hunt, happy till they turn their faces on me, the last of all the household. And, father—oh, my father, the death-wound is yet upon thy breast, as thou movest onward in the air. Mother! mother! look not thus on thy child! Oh, turn not to me that breast whence I drew my life-nurture; that breast on which I rested when the life-drops were oozing forth from the wound which the enemy inflicted. But they are happy—happy in their union, happy in the smiles of the Great Spirit whom they adored in their homes and their hunting-grounds, whom they propitiated by terrible vengeance upon those who desecrated those homes and destroyed those hunting-grounds. They are happy, for the mist that gathers round my mother’s brow is resplendent with rainbow beams, and as she passes upward to the mountain’s summit, she waves her hand to me in peace. Thy pardon and thy blessing, oh, my mother—prostrate, I invoke them both.”

William, who had witnessed the last agonizing scene, then stepped forward and raised the girl from the deep earth. She scarcely noticed his presence, the wildness of her eye denoted thoughts differently placed; and it was several minutes before she recovered her usual self-possession.

“It is passed, William, and we will now return to the house.”

“But, Rebecca, why should you thus have exposed yourself and your health by such a yielding to the influence of your feelings and your imagination?”

“William, I am, or I would be, a Christian; and when I have given myself to you and to God, I would have no reserve in my heart from either, and therefore, before the sacrifice was made, as the daughter of the Judge of Israel went forth upon the high-places of her land to mourn, so I came hither to weep for what I was to leave, and to leave that for which I wept. The last sacrifice upon the altar of my fathers and my fathers’ deities has been made. I have torn from my heart the flowers which grew upon the Indian’s belief, and have prayed that the tree of life may over-shadow the wild plants, that they blossom not again. I have taken down from the recesses of my soul, the gods which my mother enshrined there, and have taken leave of the living and the dead of my father’s race. And now, William, now my beloved one, I am thine—thine in all seasons and all changes—thine, loving and loved; but, oh, do not forget that my mind, though dedicated to Christianity now, has been the home of the red man’s creed, and may yet while it is sanctified by the new altar, reflect something of itself, its other self upon the purer worship, as the temples dedicated to the pagan god seem to cast some air of their origin upon the new and sanctified rites which they now enclose; and in moments of feeling, or when some additional wrong to my fathers’ race is done in the name of our new creed, bear with me, if for a moment, I forget the blessed teaching of the gospel, and yield to the earlier influences of blood, of education and patriotism. It shall not be often, not for the world. Henceforth, my beloved one, I am thine; all of childhood’s home—all of a people’s wrongs—all of a nation’s faith and a nation’s gods, are given up—and all of thine adopted. Thy breast shall be my pillow in trouble, and thy smile my token of joy; thy welfare shall be my happiness, thy dwelling shall be my home, ‘thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God.’”

William pressed to his heart the confiding, beautiful girl; and they turned to leave the eminence upon which they stood, and to join the family below.

The exceeding beauty of the morning induced them to look once more and admire the scene. The whole broad river below them seemed one floating mass of light; and as the current passed on, its surface was disturbed by the boughs of the overhanging trees that dipped into the water, and created ripples that reflected all the hues of the moving light. The mountains in the west seemed clothed in gorgeous sunbeams, and nature appeared to have assumed her richest garb, to bless the nuptials that were about to take place.

“I love this scene,” said Rebecca, “it tranquilizes me—it soothes my spirit, it elevates without agitating my mind—such a morning is a teacher of religion.”

“The Spirit of God is teaching every where,” said William.

“True, true,” said Rebecca, “but I seem to lack some visible object, something upon which my eye may rest, something like the ladder of Jacob, by which I may ascend; the visible is necessary to me, to fix my thought upon and draw it up to the invisible. Is not your creed deficient in that?”

“Can there be a better man than Father Harris, and have you ever heard of one less influenced by the visible and tangible, and more guided by faith in the unseen?”

“True—but it is his goodness, his attainment in that grace which enable him to dispense with the visible. You white men cut and blaze the trees of the forest so that you may recognize the course by which you are to reach a desired point, but the Indian passes onward through the densest wood, with no visible sign, no outward evidence of the path.”

“But, Rebecca, the white men find that their cuttings and blazings are imitated, so that it is difficult to tell in time which is the right mark, and resort must be had yet to the invisible to correct the visible. The former deceives us often—the latter never.”

Hand in hand the pair returned to the mansion of Mr. Harris, and the day thus begun in sacrifice and prayer, was closed in festivity. And William received to his arms his Indian bride.

The little enclosure at Harrisburg is a frail but eloquent memorial of the virtue and sufferings of Mr. Harris, and the fidelity of Pompey. The former handed down his name and his virtues to a numerous posterity.

Pompey, undoubtedly, is represented by some of his own color even in the present day. The great reward which he claimed for his successful exertions to save his master’s life, was permission to introduce a fiddle into the settlement; and for years afterward the banks of the Susquehanna were made melodious by the joyful notes which Pompey drew from his favorite instrument, while blithely and strong was heard the footfall of the young at night, as they danced to the music of the Orpheus of their time.

William’s descendents are in and around Harrisburg, holding office when they can get it, and dividing themselves between the two, or occasionally among the many parties, so that the advantage of ascendency by either fraction may not be entirely lost by all. These are not the children of Rebecca; she died young—her frame of mind was not favorable to long life. She died a Christian, firm, consistent, active, growing always in faith, and full of good works; and yet it was remarked by the excellent clergyman whose teaching she followed, that her mind seemed never to have dismissed entirely the creed of her childhood—and all her pure faith, all her Christian zeal, all her holy life, appeared to have some tinge of the creed of her fathers—not to alter the body of her faith, but merely to give it, at times, a color. “And,” said a successor of that clergyman, “have not the teachings she adopted, teachings of Christianity, always been thus affected by the previous character of the community or individuals by which they have been received?” No requirement diminished, no duty changed, no obligation dispensed, but a sort of reservation of a non-essential, which served to reflect a separate ray upon the admitted and the requisite. Religious truth, though enforced by divine grace, must in general be conveyed by a human medium, which will impart a portion of itself or its accidents, as the color of the atmosphere through which light is conveyed to earth gives hue and tinge to the rays, without diminishing essentially their powers to guide by their light, or invigorate by their heat. Nay, when we concentrate these rays to convey them to particular objects, the light not only takes the tinge of the medium, but it has also the divergency and eccentricity consequent upon the inequalities of surface, or the impurities of the glass through which it comes.

Rebecca lived to bless her husband by her domestic virtues and her unfailing affection. Her death was mourned wherever her beautiful example of womanly virtue and Christian integrity was known.

[After the above narrative was prepared for the press, numerous letters that passed between Rebecca and her school-mates—one or two to Mr. Harris—and some to her lover, and two to her husband, near the close of her life, were supplied to the writer by the same person who furnished the materials for the story. They could not well be introduced with the narrative, but may be given hereafter, should it appear that they have interest enough for the pages of this Magazine.]






Thou’rt like the apple—maiden young and fair⁠—

  That sees its fellows gathered, one by one,

While, on the topmost bough, though ripe and rare,

  It unmolested sits and blooms alone:

Forgotten? No—a mark for every eye,

But for the gazer’s longing hand too high.

Published in Walz, Rhetor. Græc. 8. 883.





HOUR I.—A Betrothal.

The princes of the night came, one by one, into the halls of Heaven, and each, from his refulgent throne, sped far and wide through space his beams of glory. The earth saw the regal train, and rejoiced, saying, “I am their sister;” then the shadows passed away from her bosom, and she stood in radiance amid her starry compeers, sending back ray for ray.

“My Lillian, let us look upon the night,” cried Kenneth—and he led her forth beneath the stars. They smiled upon the maid, and crowned her forehead with their beams, and her beauty grew as lofty and mysterious as their own.

The pair walked in silence, for each bosom throbbed heavily, with its burden of unspoken love; they walked in silence, for youth was in flushing, and they heeded not the speeding hours.

First Kenneth spoke, for man must act while woman muses, and the spells of night oppressed him.

“Look, Lillian, on the shining orbs above us, circling their mysterious round! Knowest thou, the starry firmament is a vast prophecy of things to be? Yon burning record of the decrees of fate rolls its stupendous riddles in mighty round, and mock our earnest inquiry. The learning of the Magi, the ‘Persians starry wit,’ may catch but faint and far-off glimpses of the truths they blazon yet conceal. The boasted lore of the Chaldean, reads but imperfectly their dim revealings, while the Gheber, wiser in his ignorance than either, bows in worship to the celestial mysteries he presumeth not to compass or comprehend.”

There was a majesty and gloom in the boy’s conceptions that charmed and oppressed fair Lillian; and, as woman is prone to do, she turned from all the rolling worlds of which he spoke, to the deep, silent, and no less enigmatical world of her own heart.

He looked again upon the heavens on which was written, as he believed, the fate of nations, while her meek eyes followed his, striving to read from the jeweled scroll, her own doom.

“Kenneth,” she cried, abruptly, and in awe, “I feel that I am approaching a crisis in my fate!”

“Thy fate, sweet one, is also written in letters of light above us. I am not deeply versed in heavenly lore, but from thy presentiment and mine, I read a crisis is at hand. Seest thou yon pale orb,” he continued, raising his hand aloft, “my father told me once it shone upon thy birth, and from that hour it has been the object of my vigil and study; so pale, so pure, it seemeth like thy fair face set in heaven. Of late methought it shone with sadder beam, and wandered from its track. See!” he cried with a shout, “it journeys the skies, side by side, with yon red-eyed planet.”

Lillian raised her soft eyes, and met the lurid glare of the blood-red star.

“What orb is that?” she inquired, with a shudder, clinging closer to Kenneth’s side.

The star of my nativity!

“Lillian! my Lillian! tremble not, beloved! hath not kind Heaven given thee to me?” He wound his arms around her frail form, and laid her to his heart.

“Dark youth, I fear thee!” she shrieked, and bursting from his embrace, fled into the night. Suddenly she paused, and covering her face with her hands, crushed the big tears that were gushing from their fountains, “ay!” she murmured, “but I love thee also!”

“Thou dost, my fawn!” said Kenneth, as he regained her side, “swear, then, to be mine.”

The maiden hesitated, for the angel whose ward she was, whispered a warning.

“Swear not, for his brow is dark and his heart fierce—his path lieth through blood, and endeth in blackness!”

Then love lifted up his voice, crying, “What grief so great as parting from thy beloved! What wo so heavy as a disappointed heart!”

And the maiden said, “I swear! Whether for good or evil, for blessing or for blight, my doom is sealed, and I am thine.”

“The crisis is past, beloved,” whispered the wooer—“where is now thy fear?”

The maiden abode in the halls of her sires, while the youth rode forth intent on valiant deeds, for ’twas in the days when a hero’s laurels were his bridal gift. But his heart was not strong in hope—neither was it girt with patience—neither was it seasoned with denial; and temptation beset him by the way and endurance failed, and when he returned, his knightly spurs were dimmed, and tarnished his knightly honor.

“Oh, spurn me not, beloved!” he cried, in agonized abasement.

And the lady answered, “Through glory and shame I will be true to thee.”

Then was Kenneth comforted by her tenderness, and strengthened by her counsels—and he went forth with hope to retrieve the errors of the past.

But the glory of his youth had departed, and the fear of God dwelt no more in his bosom; and his heart was curdled by the scorn of men, and hardened against his kind; and his right hand became a hand of power, but it was red with wrath—and injustice, and oppression, and cruelty, and wrong, and rapine, and murder, stalked in his train. Then he returned to his lady, and stood before her with a sullen brow, saying,

“By my valor have I won my bride!”

“Ah, Kenneth!” she faltered, “thou hast despised my counsels, thou hast mocked at my love; thy path hath been a path of blood, and thy crimes rise mountain-high between thee and thy affianced! Oh, why hast thou done this?”

The scales fell from his eyes in that pure presence, and looking back over the guilt of years, he felt appalled by his own sins.

“The stars, in their courses, fought against me,”[2] he answered gloomily—“it was my destiny.”

“Oh, abandon that fearful error, and cease to burden Fate with thy misdeeds. Thy destiny hath been of thine own choosing. Didst thou not turn a deaf ear to the pleadings of all good angels? Didst thou not yield an easy prey to the devices of thine own heart? For the sake of the future, look back upon the past, and tell me if thou canst not recall the hour when two paths were spread before thee, and thou didst choose thy lot; tell me no more of destiny!”

“My lady hath forgotten her meekness as well as her love.”

“Kenneth, reproach me not! I have wasted my youth in vigils for thee; I have watched, and wept, and waited, now in hope, and anon in hopelessness, until sorrow shadowed my father’s halls, and mildew settled down on my heart. Now in the depths of my despair I love thee still, but I dare not wed thee! Go in peace; if man may ever meddle with his fate, mine shall be of my own moulding.”

“Fashion it as thou wilt,” he answered fiercely, “I will come to claim thee in the appointed hour!

Fair Lillian sitteth in her husband’s home, but a great shadow lieth athwart the hearth; ’tis the memory of an earlier, wilder, fonder love; and the fierce fame of her warrior, reacheth her ever, terrible as the roar of distant battle.

The stars in their courses fought against Sisera.

Judges, chap. v., verse 20.


HOUR II.—The Consummation.

The princes of the night mounted their flaming steeds and coursed through heaven. Lillian sat in widow’s weeds, and watched them from her great round tower. Suddenly the clang of a mailed heel rung on the winding stair, and her cheek paled—for those halls no longer echoed with martial sounds since Lord Ulric had been gathered home. Near and more near, loud and more loud, and a warrior strode into the apartment, and folded the lady in his embrace!

I have come!

Those old, familiar, long beloved tones, how they broke upon the loneliness, thrilling to its centre her sorrow-stricken heart. What marvel if she wept unresistingly on his broad breast, in her agony of surprise.

“I have come to claim my bride!”

Then was the spell broken, and her soul awoke to a sense of its stern resolves. She freed herself from that passionate embrace, saying,

“I may not wed thee, Kenneth.”

“But listen to my pleadings, my long lost one; canst thou not divinely forgive the past, and be my guardian angel for the future? Hast thou ceased to love, or hast thou learned to fear me?”

“Kenneth, thou art accursed of God, and abhorred of men, and yet I fear thee not. Thou wert the lover of my youth, ever fond, ever tender; and thy name, so dreaded in the land thou hast scourged, is to me but a talisman of gentle memories. I fear thee not. But I have walked through life with a strong hand on my heart, curbing its warm impulses, crushing its fond love. It hath plead passionately for thee, but I hearkened not, and by this bitter schooling have I learned to resist even thee.”

“And I, have I not, ’mid sin and sorrow, ’mid wreck of hopes and ruin of soul, preserved undimmed my one bright dream of thee? Have I not sat by a lonely hearth, while thy smile filled the home of my rival with joy? Have I not forborne to tear thee thence, because I would not offer violence to thee or thine? And now wilt thou reject the love which youth hath sanctified, and manhood ripened?”

“Oh, why hast thou not wedded and forgotten me?” she cried, in anguish.

“Because the hope of thy pale waning beauty was dearer to my heart than all the daughters of bloom. Because I would be ever ready for the hour when fate should say, ‘arise, make ready thy bower for thy promised bride;’ that hour has come! Mark the heavens where ’tis written, thou art mine. Once, long ago, we looked upon the night with all its circling stars; thou seest them now, as then, treading their solemn round, unchanged, unchangeable. Not one of all the starry hosts may wander from its appointed pathway; and canst thou, child of destiny, escape thy fate? The hand that guides them, governs thee, and the decrees of the Omnipotent have been, from all eternity, and are immutable.”

“Oh, tell me no more of thy stern, unpitying faith! thou hast imbued my mind with thy belief, until, like the scorpion girt with fire, I have almost turned on myself despairing. I would fain believe that the struggles and strivings of humanity are not without their fruits; that the fervent prayer, the earnest effort, are heard, and heeded; that man may wrestle all night with his Maker, and when the morning breaks, prevail.”[3]

Very touching was the fierce man’s tenderness, but the lady was strong in her heart’s martyrdom. Then he turned away, saying,

“Thou hast destroyed the hope of a lifetime, and my father’s lore hath failed me. How could I thus misread the stars!”

From the battlement he looked on heaven thus questioning, and the stars grew dim beneath his gaze.

The orb that beamed upon his lady’s birth, sent down its calm, cold ray; his own more fiery planet blazed in lurid light, while an ocean of space rolled between.

“Lost to me!” he murmured.

As he spoke, the red planet shot madly from its sphere, careering athwart the concave like a sword of fire, it rushed from being, and deeper darkness brooded o’er the expanse.

Again his eye sought the milder light of the star he worshiped, when lo! it had been swept from the face of heaven.

“Be it so, lost Pleiad!” cried the lover, and folding in his arms the pallid lady, leaped from the turret, into the abyss below.

Exodus, chapter xxxii.





                    Dear God and must we see

All blissful things depart from us, or ere we go to Thee?

E. B. Barrett.

It was an altar worthy of a god!

  All of pure gold, in furnace fire refined;

And never foot profane had near it trod,

  And never image had been there enshrined;

But now a radiant idol claimed the place,

And took it with a rare and royal grace.


And the proud woman thrilled to its false glory,

  And when the murmur of her own true soul

Told in low, lute-tones Love’s impassioned story,

  She dreamed the music from that statue stole,

And knelt adoring at the silent shrine

Her own divinity had mode divine.


And with a halo from her heart she crowned it,

  That shed a spirit-light upon its face,

And garlands hung of soul-flowers fondly round it,

  Wreathing its beauty with immortal grace,

And so she felt not, as she gazed, how cold

And calm that Eidolon of marble mould.


Like Egypt’s queen in her imperial play,

  She, in abandonment more wildly sweet,

Melted the pearl of her pure Life away,

  And poured the rich libation at its feet,

And in exulting rapture dreamed the smile

That should have answered in its eyes the while.


And all rare gifts she lavished on that altar,

  Treasures the mines of India could not buy,

Nor did her foot-fall for a moment falter,

  Though the world watched her with an evil eye,

And sad friends whispered “Soon she’ll wake to weep,

For lo! she walks in an enchanted sleep.”


Oh! glorious dreamer! with dark eyes upturned

  In wondering worship to that godlike brow,

How the rare beauty of thy spirit burned

  In the rapt gaze and in the glowing vow,

How didst thou waste on one thy soul should scorn

The glory of a blush that mocked the Morn!


She turned from all—from friendship and the world⁠—

  Only Love knew the way to that dim glade,

And calm her sweet, yet queenly lip had curled

  Had the world’s whisper reached her in that shade,

But she was deaf and dumb and blind to all,

Save to the charm that held her heart in thrall.


And Love, who loved her, flew at her sweet will,

  Bringing all gems that hoard the rainbow’s splendor,

And singing-birds with magic in their trill,

  And what wild-flowers fairy-land could lend her,

And flower and bird and jewel all were laid

To grace that golden altar in the Shade.


Fair was that sylvan solitude I ween⁠—

  The lady’s charmed and trancéd spirit lent

The starlight of its beauty to the scene,

  And joy and music with the fountain went,

While in a still enchantment on its throne

The lucid statue cold and stately shone.


Love lent her, too, th’ enchanted lute he played

  And she would let her light hand float at will

Across its chords of silver, half afraid,

  Like a white lily on a murmuring rill,

Till Music’s soul, waked by that touch, took wing,

And mingling with it hers would soar and sing⁠—


“Dost thou see—dost thou feel—oh, mine idol divine,

How I’ve yielded the soul of my soul for thy shrine?

Dost thou thrill to the tones of my melody sweet?

Does it glide to thy heart on its musical feet?

Dost thou love the light touch of my hand as I twine

My passion-flower wreath for thy beauty benign?


“Dost thou know how I’ve gathered all gifts that I own

To bless and to brighten the place of thy throne,

How my thoughts like young singing-birds flutter and fly

With a song for thine ear and a gleam for thine eye,

How Truth’s precious gems, that drink sunbeams for wine,

Are wreathed into chaplets of light for thy shrine?


“How Fancy has woven her fairy-land flowers

To garland with odor and beauty thine hours,

While Feeling’s pure fountains play softly and free,

And chant in their falling ‘For thee! for thee!’

Dost thou feel—dost thou see—oh! mine idol divine,

How I’ve yielded the soul of my soul for thy shrine.”


Thus sang the lady, but her waking hour

  Drew near; for when her passionate song was mute,

And no fond answer thrilled through that hushed bower

  Into her listening heart, she laid the lute

Within her loved one’s clasp and prayed him play

Some idyl sweet to wile the hours away.


From his cold hand the lute dropped idly down

  And broke in music at the false god’s feet;

Love’s lute! ah Heaven! how paled the peerless crown

  Above that brow when with a quick wild beat

Of fear and shame and sorrow at her heart,

The lady from her dazzling dream did start.


And the dream fell beside the broken lute,

  And the flowers faded in their fairy grace

And the fount stopped its glorious play, and mute

  The birds their light wings shut in that sweet place,

While the deep night that veiled the woman’s soul

O’er shrine and idol cold and starless stole.


And in her desolate agony she cast

  Her form beside Love’s shivered treasure there,

And cried, “Oh, God! my life of life is past!

  And I am left alone with my despair.”

Hark! from the lute one low, melodious sigh

Thrilled to her heart a sad yet sweet reply.


Then through the darkness rose a voice in prayer,

  “My Father! I have sinned ’gainst Thine and Thee.

The idol, whom I deemed so grandly fair

  That its proud presence hid thy heaven from me,

Shorn of his glory, shrunk to common clay,

Behold for him and for my heart I pray.


“Take Thou the lute—the shattered lute of love⁠—

  And teach my faltering hand to tune it right

To some dear, holy hymn—which, like a dove,

  From silver fetters freed, may cleave the night,

And fluttering upward to thy starlit throne

Die at Thy heart with blissful music moan.”





The winter of 1692 was no mild specimen of the climate of the New England wilds. The settlers on the inhospitable coast of Maine found its severity to exceed all their apprehensions. The few comforts which they had as yet been able to gather around them, were inadequate to the wants of that long and dreary season. Many fell victims of hardships and despondency; while not a few toiled on, cheerful and uncomplaining examples of endurance and suffering. It was perhaps more fortunate for the northern settlements than their pioneers, that they were commenced in summer, for the cold and inclemency of their early winters were enough to sadden the heart, and blast the hopes of the most visionary dreamer. The stranger who built his rude open hut in pleasant June, fanned by cool breezes during his summer toil, wot not that a few months would bring a bleakness of which he had little conception. The settlements on the Piscataqua are among the oldest in Maine; and to those who first selected the romantic site of the now beautiful village of York, it seemed enchanted land. Primeval forests covered the whole country through which the Piscataqua and its Naiad Sisters wound their way to the sea. The delicate foliage of the beech and poplar, the deep sombre green of the hemlock and fir, the pale, graceful willow, and the bright emerald maple, all blended to form a perfect forest robe, as yet untouched by the devastating hand of man. Bald peaks lent wildness to the scene, already diversified by the commanding banks of the rivers which lay calmly mirrored in their deep, clear waters. No wonder the early adventurers looked with rapturous delight upon the broad bays studded with islands, the green promontories and quiet harbors into which the streams widening their channels, gradually lost themselves in the Atlantic. The sea-fowl bathed its drooping plumage unmolested on the shores, the wild-cat ran at will, guided only by the impulses of its savage nature, and the graceful deer proudly reared its antlered head, and bounded away, the undisturbed inhabitant of the mighty wilderness.

To him who, tired with the bondage of the old world, sought refuge in the new, these were glowing emblems of that liberty he so earnestly longed for. He hailed the land spread out before him, in all the magnificence of nature, as that which would realize his most chimerical ideas of happiness. Imagination added to its charms, and converted what was truly wild and beautiful into a paradise. The toils and dangers of the frontier life vanished away; and with a buoyant heart the wanderer adopted the unknown soil, alike ignorant and unmindful of the ills that would cluster around his future path. When want shall have been encountered in every form, sickness endured, famine driven from the door, and “hope, the star that leads the weary on,” delusive hope, shall whisper of bliss to come, he is destined to find in the savage tribes of the country, enemies more formidable than the evils of his condition. Hard fate! to survive the strife of the elements, to escape pestilence and danger only to perish by a relentless human foe.

The settlement of York had enjoyed several years of prosperity, the effects of which were perceptible in a considerable degree of neatness and comfort about its dwellings. This appearance of thrift made it a surer mark for destruction. In January, 1692, a band of Abenakis and French burst upon this defenseless village, “offering its inhabitants captivity or death.” A terrible storm had just covered the earth with snow, to a depth which would have proved a barrier to any but these intrepid barbarians. They had walked on snow-shoes, the long distance from the basin of the St. John’s, the difficulties of the way only serving to increase their insatiable thirst for bloodshed. It was a serene winter’s evening, when the Abenaki braves surrounded their council-fire, a few miles from the doomed village, to determine upon their mode of assault. The purity of nature in these snowy solitudes strangely contrasted with the sanguinary deeds plotted there. She witnesses in silence the offences of her children. She beholds the members of the great brotherhood of man rise up and destroy each other, yet thunders no warning to the victim, nor hurls the fire of heaven upon the destroyer.

Stealthily advanced the murderers, while the peaceful inhabitants of York were gathered around their happy firesides. Ah, never more will those family groups meet around the altar of prayer, never again together join the festive dance. That ringing war-whoop which strikes the ear is the death-knell of the unsuspecting villagers. Mother, take a last look at thy darling, ere its baby face is snatched forever from you. Husband, clasp thy wife to thy bosom, for that fond embrace shall be the last. Lover, thou art vainly striving to wrest thy cherished one from the barbarian’s grasp—thy agonizing efforts to save her, make her a prize in those savage eyes; and, unfortunate girl, instead of mingling thy blood with thy kindred, a captivity awaits thee a thousand times more horrible death.

This lot befell Amy Wakefield. She saw her mother fall lifeless from the first blow of the tomahawk. Her father, with the fury of a madman, sprung upon the assassin, and proved the avenger of his wife. Swift as thought, however, he was overborne by the comrades of the dead Indian, and he lay a mangled corse beside his beloved companion; one son and a servant girl shared the same fate. Poor, gentle, timid Amy! there she stood petrified by the awful sight before her, but she made no effort to escape. Vain indeed would have been the attempt; her nonresistance saved her life, and prolonged her sufferings. No scalping-knife was uplifted over her head, but as if her sentence was written on her brow, they proceeded without a moment’s hesitation to bind her hands behind her. Richard Russel rushed into the street at the first alarm, and ye who know a lover’s heart can tell why he flew with the speed of lightning, to seek Amy Wakefield—his betrothed bride. He entered the dwelling where he knew carnage and death were doing their dreadful work; but what was danger to him, with such an object at stake!

“Oh, Richard,” said Amy, opening her lips for the first time since her mother’s dying shriek had sealed them, in a tone which would have melted a heart less sensitive than his. He darted forward, seized the Indian who was binding her, and with a maniac’s gripe wrestled for the mastery. Young Russel, tall and athletic, was considered the most vigorous young man in the colony, but his strength was unequal to that of the sinewy son of the forest. A blow from a war-club felled him senseless to the earth. “Merciful God!” cried poor Amy in the anguish of her soul, as her last earthly hope was quenched within her. She was dragged from the spot where lay all she held dear. As she passed the door, a kindly stupor seized her; neither the screams of the villagers, nor the kindling flames of the cottages, roused her. She looked vacantly around, but heeded not what she saw. She felt no grief—she had no consciousness. The scenes of the past half hour had banished her senses, and bewildered her mind. They seemed like a terrific vision in a dream—hideously vivid, without the power of realizing or escaping from it. Why did not oblivion forever steal over the past, or delirium cheat the soul in future?

The work of death was done. The slain were sepulchred in the ashes of their cottage homes; the captives were divided as spoils among the warriors, and toward morning they started for the northeast. Amy Wakefield and three other prisoners were the especial care of two Abenakis and a Frenchman, Jean Mordaunt. The whole party moved rapidly, lest the neighboring settlements should see the light of the burning village, and pursue them; but this little company were the foremost. The other captives with Amy were men, but she kept pace with them and the Indians.

She hurried along as if she were fleeing from enemies. All that day she traveled on, taking no food, uttering no complaint; and at last, when night came, she sunk down unconcernedly to sleep. It was one of their former stopping places, and the Indians rekindled the fires, which had scarcely expired. The poor captives gathered around them and welcomed the burning heat, though hardly more comfortable than the chilling blasts to which they had been exposed. Oh, the sorrows of that weary journey—cold, hunger and thirst were among the least of them. The Indians returned by the trail in which they came; but the snow was untrodden and deep, and the path lay through forests and across rivers. Some drooped by the way and received beatings for their manifestations of fatigue, whilst many found snowy graves. For many days they traveled on together, but finally separated in little bands for the settlements where they belonged, each carrying with them their captives. This last sad comfort of friends and neighbors traveling together in their misery, was now denied them, and they looked each other a last adieu.

I said Amy slept. It was a blessed sleep, for it carried her back to childhood’s days; now she was gathering violets with her little brothers on the river’s bank; now she saw her brother’s angel face, and heard her father’s “dear little Amy.” Then time flew by, and she felt her lover’s warm kisses; years seemed moments, and moments years—and still she slept on. Would that she might have slept “that sleep from which none ever wake to weep.”

The sun was high in the heavens ere they roused them from their slumbers. The labors of the previous day were exhausting even to the Indian’s strong frame. Some of the wretched captives had passed a sleepless night from fear or excessive weariness; and to some their aching limbs forbade rest. But Amy still lay with her head thrown back, her hands clasped; her marble face and motionless lips rendered still more striking by the profusion of black hair lying disheveled about her. The Indian who advanced to awaken her, paused, as if he shrunk from such a personification of purity. He took hold of her shoulder and shook her; but it seemed as if her senses were bound by death’s icy chains. He struck her a rough blow on the side of her head. She opened her eyes, and tried to rise, but her limbs refused her support, and she fell back. She looked up—her consciousness returned. The sight of the Indian’s face brought back the scenes of that dreadful night, and she trembled like an aspen leaf. But another blow for her tardiness, brought a full conception of her situation, and a flood of tears. Her stiff, feeble movements, the tears running in torrents down her cheeks, were a strange counterpart to the day before. They started; she tried to proceed, but her limbs seemed paralyzed, and her heart died within her. She forgot all around, even her own wretchedness; she remembered only that cottage scene, Richard, and her parents—and she prayed for death. Her sobs were heart-rending, still the cruel savages urged her on. Oh, were there no friendly angels abroad in the earth; was mercy fled, and vengeance dead! At length the Indians, enraged at what they considered the girl’s obstinacy, raised a club to strike her, but Mordaunt, who, perhaps, had enough of humanity to be touched by the spectacle before him, leaped forward, averted the blow, and talking with them a few moments in their own rude, wild tongue, seemed to calm their anger. Soon after this there was a division of the company; Amy and some others, who were incapable of keeping up with the main party, were put together and allowed to proceed more slowly; still she went weeping on—that painful way was traced in tears, and the desert solitudes echoed with her sighs. After about three weeks, the Indians discerned their “smokes” in the distance, and saluted them with shoutings and expressions of great joy. Amy’s peculiar grief had awakened some little pity, even in the bosoms of her savage captors. To this, and the influence of Mordaunt, whose notice she had attracted ever since the first morning, when she lay an unconscious sleeper beside their fires, she owed her comparatively easy lot. She was given to Wiloma, the wife of Great Turtle, the last king, who kept her to do her menial drudgery, but treated her with some kindness.

Jean Mordaunt was a Jesuit missionary. He belonged to a class of whom mankind has drawn widely varying pictures. Pious, devoted, self-sacrificing, ambitious, crafty and revengeful, are, doubtless, all true descriptions of this fraternity, who have left no country without its representatives, and whose name is Legion. America, the “land of mountains and eagles,” early drew them hither, and here we see their character in all its phases. They penetrated nearly every recess on the northern part of our continent, and visited almost all of the Indian tribes, teaching them the name of Jesus and the Virgin Mother; some affirming in their enthusiasm, that “the path to heaven was as open through a roof of bark, as through arched ceilings of silver and gold.” “Not a cape was turned, nor a river entered, but a Jesuit led the way,” says the eloquent historian, Bancroft. “The cross and the lily, emblems of France and Christianity,” were carved on the trees, and inscribed on the rocks. Many, like Mesnard, or the gentle Marquette, found quiet resting-places in the wilderness; and the western waters which wash their graves, perpetually sing their dirge. But Gabriel Lallemand, Father Jaques, Jean De Brebeuf, René Goupil, and many others, sealed their labors with their blood. Their memory is precious to the mother church; and what wonder that her sons and daughters revere them as saints. But there were a vast multitude who claimed the same mission of love and mercy with these martyrs of holy zeal, whose lives and characters too plainly betrayed their hypocrisy. There were those whose religion cloaked their ambition, and others in whom intrigue had supplanted all the simplicity of the gospel. Instead of religious teachers, they often became artful politicians. That the French Jesuits participated in, and often instigated the attacks upon the English border settlements, is so well attested, that it cannot be denied. The enmity between the French and English nations was too deeply seated to be forgotten by their colonists, and often led them to rouse the merciless savage against their unguarded neighbors. It is difficult to conceive how a minister of that blessed religion which proclaims “peace and good-will to men,” should have so far forgot its precepts, as to be present at the bloody massacre of York; but Jean Mordaunt was there. Perhaps he did not stain his hands with blood, but he spotted his soul with guilt.

Amy Wakefield gradually recovered her spent energies. Her elastic constitution rebounded from the severe shocks it had received, but her sufferings left an indelible impress on her spirits. Time could not restore the loved ones sleeping in the dust, and smiles bade adieu to her once happy face. Like Egeria of yore, she forever mourned her heart’s lost treasures. Mordaunt dwelt upon that beautiful sorrowing face until it seduced him from his priestly vows; but it was a problem to the wary Frenchman how to approach Amy. Though a submissive slave, she was unapproachable; she answered no signs, nor noticed the broken English addressed to her. She shunned every one, and seemed to scorn sympathy with her foes. Months passed, and still she toiled on in Wiloma’s cabin, but her grief was not assuaged, nor the fountain of her tears dried up. As spring came, she would steal away by herself without the wigwam to admire the opening buds, which filled the air with their perfume, and with delight would listen to the carol of birds, as they hopped merrily from branch to branch, fit emblems of happiness. The cheerfulness and beauty of all around her, contrasted strangely with her own condition, but at times she would forget her sadness, and soothed by the wild music of the waterfall, lose herself in some day-dream of happiness.

Old Wiloma scarcely watched her captive. Indeed, the thought of escape never entered the mind of Amy. Where should she fly, when all she loved were in heaven. True, she did not know that two of her brothers were dead. The eldest, Winthrop, was at a distant settlement at school; and little Johnny, the pet, was sweetly sleeping in the chamber when they were attacked, so it seemed certain that he was slain. But the chance of life vanished when Richard fell.

“Alas! the love of woman; it is known

  To be a lovely and a fearful thing;

For all of hers upon that die is thrown,

  And if ’tis lost, life has no more to bring

To her, but mockeries of the past alone.”

Amy was one day sitting in the wigwam-door when she saw Mordaunt coming toward her, and rose to retire. “In the name of Jesus, tarry,” said he, in a manner so earnest and imperative, that she stopped involuntarily. “I have prayed for thee to the Holy Virgin and the Saints,” continued he, crossing himself. It was the first intelligible sentence in her own language that Amy had heard since she parted with her companions in misery. Some of the Indians spoke a broken English that she understood, but she had never heard Mordaunt utter a word before.

“I need not thy prayers to thy saints,” said Amy, after recovering from her astonishment, and recollecting the teachings of her infancy.

“Speak not lightly of prayers, child, thy soul hath need of them,” said Mordaunt.

“I know it, but those now sleeping in death, taught me that there is but One that heareth prayer,” said she, her eyes filling with tears, “and He is our Father in Heaven.”

“They were heretics, and knew not the communion of the true church,” said the Jesuit. “They taught thee wrongly, child; and I fear their souls are now suffering the pains of purgatory, but for thy sake I would gladly pray them out.”

Amy’s eyes flashed indignantly. “That may be thy portion, deceiver; but those of whom you speak, killed by your murderous bands, are angels in heaven. I know it,” said she, with an assurance that silenced Mordaunt. “I saw them last night, they beckoned me upward. Oh, Father, have mercy!” and she lifted her eyes and hands heavenward, with an expression, as if her soul were quitting its earthly tabernacle. Mordaunt was awed. He sat silently gazing at her, and she into the azure above. Old Wiloma, who had been asleep in the wigwam, at this instant awoke, and calling Amy, brought her wandering senses back to earth. She rose and obeyed the bidding. Mordaunt departed, but the expression of that upturned face haunted him. There was a touching serenity about Amy, as she gazed into the land of spirits, that commanded his admiration. Duplicity had indeed made him its disciple, but it had not entirely blunted his perceptions of the beautiful; his coarse heart was not impervious to a scene like that.

He sought another interview, but Amy avoided him more than ever after that conversation. Mordaunt often visited old Wiloma’s cabin, for she had learned the sign of the cross, but never could he gain an opportunity of speaking with her who now had his every thought. Cupid’s arrows were too deeply transfixed to be withdrawn, and the more he was foiled, the more necessary seemed the object he would gain. One day Amy was walking in the woods, when Mordaunt coming up hastily behind, surprised her with, “My dear mademoiselle.” She could not retreat, and had not time to reply, before his pent-up feelings found utterance in the best English he could command. He talked not of saints, or the “blessed Virgin.” He had been seeking this opportunity too long, another was too uncertain, and above all, he felt too deeply to allow of any delay.

In a broken and tremulous manner he told her of his love; how his thoughts had dwelt upon her night and day, and swore to be faithful forever, would she but bless him with her affection. Amy’s countenance indicated no participation in the confusion manifested by Mordaunt. The color came and went upon his cheek, as hope or fear predominated—a fitful anxiety pervaded his whole frame. Nothing could have astonished Amy more than the declarations of Mordaunt. She had felt a decided aversion to him, without knowing why, or having the slightest suspicion of his real state of feeling. Her features were rigid, and bespoke no emotion, her voice calm, and her whole manner self-possessed.

“I have given my heart to my own dear Richard, and though he lives no more, I will not, I wish not to recall it. Where he lies, there lie buried my earthly hopes and affections.”

“But,” said he, “you are pining in this captivity—love me, and I will rescue you. I will fly with you. We will make our home amid the vine-clad hills of France; I will be thy deliverer and protector, and happiness shall crown thy days.”

“I am pining,” said Amy, “but it is not captivity that makes me sigh; I grieve for that which thou canst never restore; happiness has fled from my sad heart. The world is desolate. This wilderness is lonely, but even here nature has left witnesses of her loveliness,” said she, pointing to the flowers at her feet.

“But be my bride,” continued the impassioned lover, “and forget thy troubles.”

“Never! never! I cannot forget, I would not be thy bride.”

Mordaunt saw in her firm, determined manner, the death-blow to his bliss; but in her refusal there was something so pensive, so mournfully beautiful, that it set his soul on fire; he could not be refused—he begged on, as wretches do for life, for one assurance of her affection, but in vain. Flatteries, promises and entreaties were alike to her—she spurned them all. Mordaunt really loved Amy as purely as he was capable of doing, and could he have gained her by persuasion, the base passions of his soul might not have been roused from their lethargy; but the object was too precious to be abandoned until every expedient was exhausted. Desire prompted him—there was one art untried; principle deterred him not—he had no honor to forbid. He knew Amy’s shrinking nature; he had observed her tremble when the Indians approached her, as if she dreaded contamination.

“Proud girl,” said Mordaunt, “thou must marry me or an Indian.”

“Terrible alternative, but rather the savage than thou, and rather death than either.”

“Well,” responded the Jesuit, seeming to be satisfied; “thy fair form will pander to the appetite of Manuki. He will exultingly gloat over his pale-faced bride. Thine is a good taste. Mordaunt or the savage.” The last sentence fell from his lips livid with anger; but Amy noticed it not. Had a thunderbolt flashed out from the clear sky above, she would not have been more terrified than at this disclosure. She had been more kindly treated than the other captives—but was it for this? Was it that Manuki, he who had torn her from her home, and murdered her lover, should press her to his bosom? Once, indeed, the appalling idea, that she might be forced to become her captor’s wife had crossed her mind, but it was only a momentary suspicion. Manuki had been gone for weeks on a hunting excursion, and the thought had never returned until now—but now all was clear; Mordaunt had confirmed her worst fears; it must be so—he had all the Indian’s secrets. The announcement was awful. A ghastly paleness overspread her face, and cold sweat stood upon her brow. She was a picture of misery and despair. She uttered not a sigh, but a crushing heart-sickness came over her, and she resigned herself to her fate. The keen eye of the priest marked the change. He thought the victim was within his grasp, and slowly advancing with an air of fiendish triumph, he took her gently by the hand,

“Poor girl,” said he, “while Mordaunt lives thou art safe. Love me, I will save you from that you so much dread.”

“No,” she returned, “the Indian’s embrace would be less terrible than thine, thou hollow-hearted seducer.”

This was too much for Mordaunt. The two passions, love and anger, drove him to desperation. Firmly grasping her arm, he said through his clenched teeth, “Heretic! thou canst not escape me!”

At this Amy seemed transformed; her eyes rolled wildly in their orbits, and she quivered with anger. In an instant Manuki and every thing connected with her captivity was forgotten. One only thought took possession of her soul, and that was of the priest before her. Hitherto she had feared and hated, now she despised him. She shook him from her, as if he had been a viper, saying, as she drew herself up to her full height, “Back, vile wretch, back! call upon thy saints, count thy beads, and pray poor souls out of purgatory, but touch me not—I know thee.”

This was said in a tone so imperious and commanding, that Mordaunt, accustomed as he was implicitly to obey superiors, shrunk involuntarily back, and Amy, turning slowly around, walked away. But there was so much of the heroic in her despair, so much loftiness of spirit in her defiance, that he dared not follow. He knew not why, but there was something in that poor girl that awed him.

On that night, memorable to York, when so many closed their eyes in death, Amy and the Indians left Richard Russell senseless, and, as they supposed, lifeless. But He who holds the springs of life, had ordered otherwise, and reserved him for future purposes. The blow which prostrated, stunned him so completely, that it effectually deceived his enemies. Mr. Wakefield’s house was one of the first attacked, and some time elapsed before the pillagers had finished their work, and were ready to fire the village. Richard lay in an oblivious insensibility for a while; but when partially recovered, he opened his eyes, and discerned by the flickering firelight the devastation around him. He comprehended his situation, sprung to his feet, and running out the back way, and creeping behind fences, he escaped unobserved just as the flames were blazing out from the neighboring cottages. A large hollow tree stood near the fence back in the clearing, and Richard bethought himself of this asylum. He crawled until he reached it, and gave a long leap into its capacious trunk, sinking into the snow, and heaping it over his head. By this artifice he saved himself. He staid there long after the sounds of savage warfare ceased, until he was nearly frozen. At length exhuming himself, he looked toward the village, but he saw nothing save the consuming habitations—he heard nothing but their crackling timbers. He soon ventured out, and was going to warm himself, but when the scorching heat struck his chilled body, it caused intense pain. This, and the fear of some lurking foe, induced him to direct his steps toward the nearest settlement. He ran most of the way, rubbing and striking his almost torpid limbs, else he had never survived to tell the woful tale of his sufferings. Half dead from fear and pain, he reached the neighboring colony. The kind settlers bound up his wounds, and ministered to his wants. He now, for the first time, began to feel his loss, and exposure added to injuries and dejection, threw him into a violent fever. For weeks he lay upon the borders of the grave, the prey of racking pains and fierce delirium. Sometimes he seemed struggling with an unseen foe; at others he would call wildly upon Amy, and anon beckoning, seemed to fancy her by his side, and fall gently to sleep. At last the disease left him, but he was helpless as an infant. Gradually he recovered his strength, but months had passed, when he again stept upon the earth. Health returned to Richard, and with it came thoughts of Amy. From his best recollection of her it seemed certain she was made a captive. She must be redeemed. But was she alive? Could she outlive the dangers of the journey she must have taken, when he sunk under the few trials he endured? Long months had elapsed. Had she been burnt at the stake, or more probably, had she not been sacrificed to the passions of the Indians? All these were painful suspicions, which constantly forced themselves upon his mind. But Hope, the “lover’s staff,” as Shakespeare truly says, stayed him up. As soon as he was able to ride on horseback, he started to find Winthrop Wakefield, who was about fifty miles distant, and the only one of all the inhabitants of York whom he knew to be alive. By riding slowly he performed the journey in a few days, and found Winthrop, who was quite overjoyed to see him, and learn that there was any reason to believe that Amy was still alive. From what he had gathered from the uncertain reports of the destruction of his native village, he supposed himself both orphan and friendless. This seemed confirmed by the fact that no tidings of any of his family later than that fatal night had ever reached him. Winthrop needed no persuasion to enter into a plan for rescuing his only sister from her deplorable condition. It wanted more eloquence to enlist others. All pitied the misfortunes, and were interested in the deliverance of the unhappy girl, and the other captives, if yet living: But there were so many difficulties attending the project, that to most it seemed entirely impracticable. The general direction of the Abenakis they knew; but it was a long and difficult expedition; the tribe was large, and scattered over an extensive tract of country, and they would be a feeble, unprotected band, without knowing to what particular point to direct their efforts. It was late in the spring—just the season when it was absolutely necessary for every man to be upon his little plantation to provide for the coming year.

But Peter the Hermit was not more indefatigable or importunate than Richard. To him the crusade was imperative, and the importance of the end to be secured exceeded the perils of the enterprise. He at last succeeded in inducing eight men from the different settlements to accompany Winthrop and himself. Providing for, and arming themselves as well as possible, they started on their hazardous excursion. It was the beginning of summer, and nature had on her gayest mantle. Fragrant blossoms strewed their path, and the groves were vocal with the melody of birds. As they advanced new objects called forth their admiration. The weather was fine, game was plenty, and they met with no insurmountable obstacles. Their march was much less tedious than they had anticipated. A different history theirs from that of the gloomy passage made by the captives the winter previous. When they had arrived at the Penobscot, they were surprised to find a man, whom they soon ascertained to be one of the captives of York. Escaped from the Indians, he had traveled many days, living on plants, twigs or roots, without a gun or knife, with which to procure food or defend himself. The poor man evinced the greatest joy on meeting them, and offered to return and guide them near where he conjectured Amy might be, though he had not seen her during his captivity, and had no positive knowledge concerning her. With more confidence and renewed courage, they now pressed forward rapidly, not a little stimulated and incited by the melancholy narrations of their guide. He led them until they heard the sound of the waterfall, when he prudently concealed himself, knowing that he would be a sure mark for the missiles of the vindictive savages.

After the last interview with Mordaunt, Amy was distracted with tormenting fears. The more she thought the more painful became her apprehensions of coming evil. She knew she had made a bitter enemy of the Frenchman, and his lowering visage, and uneasy, troubled appearance, boded no good. She was each day more strongly convinced of the truth of the frightful intelligence he communicated. She knew the warriors were to return during that moon, which was a festival time with the Abenakis, and she felt assured Manuki would then carry his designs into execution. Her misery was now complete. Distressing surmises by day, only gave place to horrid dreams during her unquiet sleep at night. Amy resolved to attempt an escape. She knew not where to go; she had a vague hope, but no expectation of reaching the haunts of civilized men. But, thought she, “I would welcome death in the wilderness, with no covering but the leaves of the forest, and no memorial save the flowers that would spring from my dust, rather than life and pollution with the Indians.” In this state of mind she left old Wiloma’s cabin, as if for her customary walk, intending never to return. She looked back toward the wigwam where she had passed so many wretched hours, and breathed a prayer for its old occupant, whom she had seen for the last time. She had none but feelings of good will toward Wiloma. She had suffered her to go and come when she pleased, and treated her kindly in her own way, and Amy felt something akin to regret on leaving her. She bent her steps toward the waterfall, for as she often walked there, it would excite no suspicion. It was a beautiful afternoon in the latter part of June; every thing animate, save herself, seemed rejoicing. Since the day Mordaunt overtook her in the woods, she had ventured but a few steps away from their hut. For two or three days she had missed him, and presumed he had gone to meet the returning party; nevertheless, she wound her way along, cautiously, and afraid, starting back from the springing partridge and flying hare, timorous, as if each rustling leaf portended danger. The cascade which Amy often visited, was, indeed, a charming sight. It was produced by a little mountain-stream, which came tumbling impetuously down a ledge of rocks, and lost itself in foam. By the distance and vehemence of its fall, rather than the volume of water, it made the hills resound with its mimic thunder. The predilection which the red men have ever manifested for the roar of water, was probably the reason why the principal rendezvous of the Abenakis had been selected within the echo of this little cataract. Amy seated herself upon the rocks, where she could look into the sea of bubbles and diamonds below. The roar of the cataract contrasted strangely with the quiet of every thing around, but it was in harmony with her own agitated heart, and its dashings drowned the tumult of her spirit, and calmed its perturbations. She gathered the rich hanging moss which grew in profusion about her, and felt irresistibly enchained to the spot. Thus spell-bound by the simple grandeur of the place, she forgot for a time her perplexities, and even her original intentions. Ah, little did she think danger or deliverance were so near.

After leaving their guide, Richard and his party proceeded in the direction indicated by the sound of the waterfall. Their plan was to secrete themselves in the cliffs about there, until they could discover if the chief part of the Indians were away. If so, they would fall upon the villages and secure the captives; but should the “braves” be there, they must await some more favorable opportunity. Advancing noiselessly, they came up within sight of the cascade, when a female figure attracted their attention. She was loosely clad; a robe of hair, dripping with spray, hung wildly down her shoulders, and, as she sat on a projecting rock, seemed the genius of the place. The keen eyes of Richard and Winthrop failed to recognize Amy. Her dress was devoid of every thing characteristic of civilization, and they thought her an Abenaki maid; still, something led them to doubt it. They halted, and Richard proposed to go forward alone and ascertain who it was. He could not see her face, but felt assured, as he advanced, that hers was no Indian form. Could it be Amy, thought he, proceeding less cautiously. Hearing his footsteps she turned her head. One wild scream of joy, and she was in Richard’s arms. That meeting! who could describe its smiles and tears? “Absence, with all its pains, was by that charming moment wiped away.” To Amy it was a resurrection from the dead; to Richard a long lost jewel found again. Winthrop’s affectionate heart was not long in comprehending the scene before him, and following Richard, he embraced and kissed his sister again and again. Tears of joy choked his utterance as he sobbed forth his delight. Amy and Winthrop had passed the morn of life joyously with each other; they “grew together, slept together, learned, played, ate together,” sharing their childish happiness and wo; and when Winthrop heard the tidings of his family’s misfortunes, it was the loss of Amy that brought forth his bitterest tears. This meeting brought back the associations of days gone by; but the past, as well as the present, was clouded by the recollection that all those near and dear had passed away, save only this, “his first love and his last.”

Amy was not mistaken. Mordaunt had gone to meet the returning Abenakis. They advanced with shoutings, as usual, but the noise of the cataract overpowered every thing beside, and the unguarded trio were too much absorbed by their unexpected happiness to think of safety. The reserve party heard the yellings of the Indians, and foresaw the threatening danger, but tried in vain to arrest the attention of Richard and Winthrop. One of them bravely started forward to warn them; but he had not advanced more than a hundred paces when he saw the Indians emerging from a little ravine opposite the falls, and sunk down into the thicket. A shower of arrows was the first premonition of their approach to the unfortunate dreamers. One bruised Amy’s arm, one entered Richard’s hat and grazed the top of his head, and one sunk deep into the breast of Winthrop. “I am killed,” cried he, as the fatal shaft pierced his vitals. Richard caught the gun that lay at his side, and, fleeing, discharged it toward their enemies. Amy, following him, ran until the sounds of the Indians grew faint and distant, and convinced them they were not pursued.

Poor Winthrop had run but a few steps when he fell dead into the bushes, unobserved by his forward associates. “Where is Winthrop?” asked Amy, as soon as recollection returned. The last few moments had too much happiness crowded into them—evil spirits looked down with malignity, and a blight came over the scene. But who shall tell the frighted Amy that Winthrop is no more? They listened—there seemed a howling joined with the roar of the falls. A thrill of horror passed over Amy as she thought that her poor brother might have fallen, wounded, into the hands of their foes. Exasperated at her loss, he would find far less humanity than she had experienced. Still that moaning sound continued and increased. Richard climbed a tall tree, thinking he might hear more distinctly, and perhaps discern what it was. What was his amazement when he found that his position enabled him to see the Indians—for in their hasty flight they had not noticed their ascent of a hill. He saw them crossing the stream below the waterfall. There were a multitude of them near together, winding their way upon the rocks. Richard had an acute, far vision; he never exerted it more than now. The howling swelled upon the breeze—what were they doing? “Oh, Heavens!” murmured he, “it is Winthrop.” They seemed carrying a man, and occasionally he could distinguish the face of a white person. He looked again and again—it was not a red man. But then, thought he, would they be mourning over a slain enemy? It must be for a captive lost. They were crossing from the same side on which they had first seen them. There had not been sufficient time, and there could be no motive for crossing and recrossing with a dead enemy; more probably they would leave him to the wolves. But one thing was certain—Amy and himself were in danger, and would be pursued. He quickly descended, and taking her concealed themselves in a clump of cedars growing thick and full from the ground. So close was the covert that a pointer could scarcely have found them. “Where is Winthrop?” said Amy, imploringly. Richard dared not—could not tell her his fears, but spoke cheerly, and whispering of love she soon forgot every thing but her lover and her joy in seeing him once more. But the more Richard considered upon what he saw from the tree, the more inexplicable it appeared, and he resolved to relate it to Amy.

“Ah,” said she, “it was Mordaunt, that dead body; and for him they were mourning. That random shot of yours killed their priest, wicked, miserable Mordaunt. You, Richard, have avenged my wrongs,” continued she, bursting into tears at the remembrance of her insult.

“Yes, that accounts for all—their carrying the body, their howling, and not pursuing us,” said Richard, still dwelling upon the sight and sounds of the afternoon. “But dry up your tears, my sweet Amy; deliverance and happiness have come at last,” and he strained her in ecstasy to his bosom. But the transport of her lover’s embrace soon gave way to grievous apprehensions for the welfare of her favorite and now only brother. “We will go and seek him and our party,” said Richard. “The Indians will scarcely follow us now; the burial of their priest will occupy them too much to think of pursuit.” It was dim twilight when they crept forth from their hiding place. They had gone but a little distance when they heard a whistle, which started Mary, but which Richard understood was from one of his comrades, and soon they saw a moving figure near them. This proved to be the man who had vainly endeavored to warn them of their peril before their attack.

“Have you seen Winthrop?” asked Amy.

“Alas! my poor young woman,” said the kind, honest man, “I hate to grieve you, if you do not know it, but I saw the dear lad fall by the way.”

“Tell me where he lies,” said the shocked, terrified girl.

“May be I can,” said the man. “I was looking for some one to come with me, when I heard you and whistled.”

He led the way and they followed silently, except the exclamations of grief that ever and anon broke from Amy. They had nearly reached the falls, the sight of which recalled the few delightful moments spent with Winthrop, when their leader, stooping down into a bunch of alder, said—“Poor, brave boy, here he lies.” It was not yet dark; the pale twilight just revealed his pale, dead face, his garments dyed with blood, and the murderous arrow still deep in his breast. Amy kissed his cold, pallid cheeks, and bathed them in tears. “My ransom was too dearly paid,” said she bitterly. “Why was Winthrop, so happy, so noble and so young, the one to fall by savage hands, when death would have been sweet to me, their wretched slave?”

“Even so, Father, for so it seemeth good in thy sight,” ejaculated their pious companion. “Clouds and darkness are about His throne, but He doeth all things well. We must not linger here.”

He and Richard bore the dead body, and Amy followed, until they heard a signal, which told them they were in the vicinity of their party. They halted, and their friends gathered around them. The object before them disclosed the tragical history of the afternoon, and they mingled their tears for one whom they all loved. The full moon rose, and looked down through the forest trees upon that weeping band. The head of the dead Winthrop rested upon Amy’s lap. He was even yet beautiful—the lustre of his eye was gone, but the clustering curls still lay life-like upon his placid brow, and his features were tranquil as if he were sleeping. There they sat, surrounding him, “dumb as solemn sorrow ought to be.” At last a low voice fell upon the air, and prayer arose from that stricken group—such prayer as only ascends from the dependent, helpless and bereaved wanderer in the wilderness. Comforted and refreshed, they removed the fatal dart, brought water from a spring and washed the body of poor Winthrop, wrapped it in a blanket, and buried his bloody garments. They resolved to relieve each other by turns, and carry the body with them until morning.

“I know they cannot hurt his corpse,” said Richard, “but let us take it out of the enemy’s country. He would have performed the like service for any of us.”

An affecting sight was that funeral train. That solitary female, bent like a drooping flower by the tempest of grief that had swept over her, the chief mourner, followed close behind the dead, borne without coffin or bier. All that night they walked in slow procession, the stillness only broken by the occasional sobs of Amy, when her overwhelming grief burst its barriers afresh. There was a “mournful eloquence” in that mute sorrow. It bespoke deeper emotion than the clamorous wailings of the Indians over their dead. The moon sunk behind the hills, and the quiet stars shed their mild radiance upon them, until their twinklings were lost in the light of the breaking morn. Weary and sad, they were cheered by the signs of returning day, and by faith the pilgrims hailed it as the blest harbinger of the resurrection morn, when, after the long night of death has passed, the final trump will awake the righteous to “life immortal in the skies.” Just as the silver clouds began to streak the east, they reached a beautiful green slope, with but few trees and a gentle streamlet bounding two sides of it. They stopped—every one seemed impressed with the fitness of the place for the burial. Amy first broke the silence, exclaiming, “It is a lovely spot!” but as they proceeded to lay down their unconscious burthen, she commenced weeping, and said, “Will you leave Winthrop here?” She uncovered his head and again pillowed it in her lap, kissing and caressing it, as if, perchance, she might awaken a smile upon that ghastly face, then mourning as if her heart would break when attracted toward the grave they were preparing for him. It was under a spreading oak that they chose his resting place. The earth around was carpeted with flowers, the rivulet gliding below, and the place was in unison with the young and beauteous form they were about to entomb there. They finished their work—they brought shrubs and flowers and sprinkled in the grave, and wrapped their cherished one in his rude pall and laid him in the narrow bed. They knelt around, Richard supporting Amy, who seemed to forget every thing but that form so soon to be buried forever from her sight. The same good man who led their supplications the evening before, was now their chaplain, and his prayer brought holy consolation to the hearts of the afflicted. He spoke of the blessedness of the dead, who had passed from the cares of earth and entered “the mansions of rest above.” He prayed most fervently for the living, who would, if faithful, soon partake of the same glory. When they arose death seemed disarmed of his terrors, and Heaven appeared very near. They covered their companion with boughs and fresh earth, and Amy cheerfully brought honey-suckles and strewed over his grave. The sun had begun to pour his mellow beams over the wakening world when, with grateful and subdued hearts, they bade a final farewell to the burial place of Winthrop.

What though they left him without guard or memorial, alone in the wilderness! Kind hands had laid him there, prayer had hallowed the spot, tears of affection bedewed his grave, and guardian spirits would watch with jealous care his “sleeping dust.” “Rest, thee, my brother, last of my kindred,” said Amy, sending a lingering look backward.

“There softly lie, and sweetly sleep,

      Low in the ground,

The storm that sweeps the wintry sky

  No more’ll disturb thy deep repose,

Than summer evening’s latest sigh,

      That shuts the rose.”






Sofuk, the Sheik of the Shammar Arabs, was the owner of a mare of matchless beauty, called, as if the property of the tribe, the Shammeriyah. Her dam, who died about ten years ago, was the celebrated Kubleh, whose renown extended from the sources of the Khabour to the end of the Arabian promontory, and the day of whose death is the epoch from which the Arabs of Mesopotamia now date the events concerning their tribe. Mohammed Emir, Sheik of the Jebour, assured me that he had seen Sofuk ride down the wild ass of the Sinjar on her back, and the most marvelous stories are current in the desert as to her fleetness and powers of endurance. Sofuk esteemed her and her daughter above all the riches of the tribe; for her he would have forfeited all his wealth, and even Amsha herself.

Layard’s Nineveh.

The black-eyed children of the Desert drove

Their flocks together at the set of sun.

The tents were pitched; the weary camels bent

Their suppliant necks, and knelt upon the sand;

The hunters quartered by the kindled fires

The wild boars of the Tigris they had slain,

And all the stir and sound of evening ran

Throughout the Shammar camp. The dewy air

Bore its full burden of confused delight

Across the flowery plain, and while, afar,

The snows of Koordish Mountains in the ray

Flashed roseate amber, Nimroud’s ancient mound

Rose broad and black against the burning west.

The shadows deepened and the stars came out,

Sparkling in violet ether; one by one

Glimmered the ruddy camp-fires on the plain,

And shapes of steed and horseman moved among

The dusky tents, with shout and jostling cry,

And neigh and restless prancing. Children ran

To hold the thongs, while every rider drove

His quivering spear in the earth, and by his door

Tethered the horse he loved. In midst of all

Stood Shammeriyah, whom they dared not touch⁠—

The foal of wondrous Kubleh, to the Sheik

A dearer wealth than all his Georgian girls.


But when their meal was o’er—when the red fires

Blazed brighter, and the dogs no longer bayed⁠—

When Shammar hunters with the boys sat down

To cleanse their bloody knives, came Alimar,

The poet of the tribe, whose songs of love

Are sweeter than Balsora’s nightingales⁠—

Whose songs of war can fire the Arab blood

Like war itself: who knows not Alimar?

Then asked the men: “O Poet, sing of Kubleh!”

And boys laid down the knives, half-burnished, saying:

“Tell us of Kubleh, whom we never saw⁠—

Of wondrous Kubleh!” Closer flocked the group,

With eager eyes about the flickering fire,

While Alimar, beneath the Assyrian stars,

Sang to the listening Arabs:


                          “God is great!

O Arabs, never yet since Mahmoud rode

The sands of Yemen, and by Mecca’s gate

That wingéd steed bestrode, whose mane of fire

Blazed up the zenith, when, by Allah called,

He bore the Prophet to the walls of Heaven,

Was like to Kubleh, Sofuk’s wondrous mare:

Not all the milk-white barbs, whose hoofs dashed flame

In Bagdad’s stables, from the marble floor⁠—

Who, swathed in purple housings, pranced in state

The gay bazars, by great Al-Raschid backed:

Not the wild charger of Mongolian breed

That went o’er half the world with Tamerlane:

Nor yet those flying coursers, long ago

From Ormuz brought by swarthy Indian grooms

To Persia’s kings—the foals of sacred mares,

Sired by the fiery stallions of the sea!


“Who ever told, in all the Desert Land,

The many deeds of Kubleh? Who can tell

Whence came she, whence her like shall come again?

O Arabs, like a tale of Sherezade

Heard in the camp, when javelin shafts are tried

On the hot eve of battle, is her story.


“Far in the Southern sands, the hunters say,

Did Sofuk find her, by a lonely palm.

The well had dried; her fierce, impatient eye

Glared red and sunken, and her slight young limbs

Were lean with thirst. He checked his camel’s pace,

And while it knelt, untied the water-skin,

And when the wild mare drank, she followed him.

Thence none but Sofuk might the saddle gird

Upon her back, or clasp the brazen gear

About her shining head, that brooked no curb

From even him; for she, alike, was royal.


“Her form was lighter, in its shifting grace,

Than some impassioned Almée’s, when the dance

Unbinds her scarf, and golden anklets gleam

Through floating drapery, on the buoyant air.

Her light, free head was ever held aloft;

Between her slender and transparent ears

The silken forelock tossed; her nostril’s arch,

Thin-drawn, in proud and pliant beauty spread,

Snuffing the desert winds. Her glossy neck

Curved to the shoulder like an eagle’s wing,

And all her matchless lines of flank and limb

Seemed fashioned from the flying shapes of air

By hands of lightning. When the war-shouts rang

From tent to tent, her keen and restless eye

Shone like a blood-red ruby, and her neigh

Rang wild and sharp above the clash of spears.


“The tribes of Tigris and the Desert knew her:

Sofuk before the Shammar bands she bore

To meet the dread Jebours, who waited not

To bid her welcome; and the savage Koord,

Chased from his bold irruption on the plain,

Has seen her hoof prints in his mountain snow.

Lithe as the dark-eyed Syrian gazelle,

O’er ledge and chasm and barren steep amid

The Sinjar hills, she ran the wild ass down.

Through many a battle’s thickest brunt she stormed,

Reeking with sweat and dust, and fetlock deep

In curdling gore. When hot and lurid haze

Stifled the crimson sun, she swept before

The whirling sand-spout, till her gusty mane

Flared in its vortex, while the camels lay

Groaning and helpless on the fiery waste.


“The tribes of Taurus and the Caspian knew her:

The Georgian chiefs have heard her trumpet neigh

Before the walls of Teflis; pines that grow

On ancient Caucasus have harbored her,

Sleeping by Sofuk in their spicy gloom.

The surf of Trebizond has bathed her flanks,

When from the shore she saw the white-sailed bark

That brought him home from Stamboul. Never yet,

O Arabs, never yet was like to Kubleh!


“And Sofuk loved her. She was more to him

Than all his snowy-bosomed odalisques.

For many years she stood beside his tent,

The glory of the tribe.

                        At last she died.

Died, while the fire was yet in all her limbs⁠—

Died for the life of Sofuk, whom she loved.

The base Jebours—on whom be Allah’s curse!⁠—

Came on his path, when far from any camp,

And would have slain him, but that Kubleh sprang

Against the javelin points, and bore them down,

And gained the open Desert. Wounded sore,

She urged her light limbs into maddening speed

And made the wind a laggard. On and on

The red sand slid beneath her, and behind

Whirled in a swift and cloudy turbulence,

As when some star of Eblis, downward hurled

By Allah’s bolt, sweeps with its burning hair

The waste of darkness. On and on, the bleak,

Bare ridges rose before her, came and passed,

And every flying leap with fresher blood

Her nostril stained, till Sofuk’s brow and breast

Were flecked with crimson foam. He would have turned

To save his treasure, though himself were lost,

But Kubleh fiercely snapped the brazen rein.

At last, when through her spent and quivering frame

The sharp throes ran, our hundred tents arose,

And with a neigh, whose shrill excess of joy

O’ercame its agony, she stopped and fell.

The Shammar men came round her as she lay,

And Sofuk raised her head and held it close

Against his breast. Her dull and glazing eye

Met his, and with a shuddering gasp she died.

Then like a child his bursting grief made way

In passionate tears, and with him all the tribe

Wept for the faithful mare.

                          They dug her grave

Amid Al-Hather’s marbles, where she lies

Buried with ancient kings; and since that time

Was never seen, and will not be again,

O Arabs, though the world be doomed to live

As many moons as count the desert sands,

The like of wondrous Kubleh. God is great!”





The shadows are dark on thy soul,

  And thoughts of the lost will throng,

For a voice hath vanished from the earth,

  Sweeter than the spring bird’s song.

Thou lookest on the still blue sky,

  And pinest ’mid its peace to be,

For the grass springeth green on a grave,

  And the world hath a grief for thee.

The flowers may be bright as they were,

  And a fragrance as soft may fling,

But the verdure hath faded from thy life⁠—

  And the heart hath but one sweet spring!

I was a transient dweller in a strange land—one distant from my childhood’s home, and far away from those who knew me first and loved me best. Gradually, as the vivid excitements of life had surrounded me, as new ties had sprung up and old hopes faded, I had lost the intimate knowledge of the welfare or the afflictions of many who had formerly been familiar friends, and a lengthened separation had produced that ignorance of the details of their destiny frequently occurring, even where affection still lingers unaltered. But there are periods when, as it were, remembrance irresistibly presses upon us, and we all have seasons when old times and buried associations crowd around us with inexplicable distinctness—when the actual loses for a while its absorbing interest, and the past, with all its radiant dreams, its rainbow illusions, is enchanting reality once more.

I was sitting alone, at the close of a lovely autumn afternoon, before an open window, my fancy busy with the throng of older associations, and inattentive to the beautiful view stretching beneath me, strikingly fair as were its features, now glowing through the crimsoning sunlight. But something—I know not what, for such glimpses are among the spirit’s mysteries—had recalled other times, and my soul communed with itself and was still. The mind has its own restless and concealed creation—its hidden world of active silentness; and to those who have battled with the depression attendant on human experience, there is untold luxury in reveling amid the crowding memories that “longest haunt the heart.” Even as I sat thus idly reflecting, a paper reached me, sent by some friendly hand from my early home, and earnestly as I would have read a loving letter, I pored over the contents of that every-day record. It spoke to me as a messenger from the absent; each well-known name mentioned in its columns, held a thousand clustering reminiscences for me; the trivial local news was like welcome household tidings; and I spoke aloud the old familiar names I had not heard for years, as if a spell lay in their sound. Last of all I turned to the page where, side by side, were chronicled marriages and deaths. The first were those of strangers; among the last was noticed the final departure of one whom I had once loved, as we only love in the purity of youth. The announcement was worded in the usual form with which we herald to the careless world that a soul has gone to the mysterious future. Nothing was there to arrest the contemplation of the reader—to speak of inevitable human destiny to a throbbing human heart—to reveal the agony of mortality, the bitterness of death, or the trials of the wearily burdened and loving ones, perchance well-nigh borne down by that one event. “Died at sea, during her homeward voyage, Mary Vere, aged 24, for three years a resident missionary in Persia.” And this was all! The ending of the saddest life I ever knew, the knell of as pure a spirit as was ever bowed and fettered by earthly cares—this was the cold, brief recording of the history of a warm nature, that had patiently toiled and uncomplainingly suffered—that even in its youth had been old in grief—that had wandered abroad and found no rest, and then, like a wounded bird, had winged its way homeward to die! Ah, Mary! little dreamed we, in our sunny days, that mine eyes should ever trace the chronicle of such a destiny for thee!

We had first met, in childhood, at the country residence of a friend, where we were both spending the summer months. She accompanied her mother—her only surviving parent, then slowly declining in the last stage of consumption. Mary and myself, thrown continually together, without other companions, speedily became warm friends, though her pensive, irresolute disposition, had little in common with my natural impetuous animation. She had been the attendant on suffering from her earliest recollection, for her father had died after a lingering illness, during which he had desired the constant enlivenment of his only child’s society, and her mother had for years been a resigned but hopeless invalid. All who have closely observed children, are aware of the influence such things half-unconsciously exert over minds susceptible to every impression, and it was not strange that one so used to look on sorrow, should have learned at last to doubt the very existence of happiness.

Mary was a strikingly beautiful child, with dark, soul-revealing eyes, bright with the mystical fire of the burning thoughts within. I well remember their rapturous expression when she was excited by some tale of heroism—for she was full of a strange, quiet enthusiasm, that wasted itself in fruitless sympathy with the moral greatness of others, but shrank with painful distrust from reliance on its own impulsive guidance. She was quick of feeling, and easily touched by the most trivial deed of kindness, and her being was too sensitive for her ever to be thoughtlessly happy. Her look and manner were peculiarly winning in their tranquil, subdued gentleness; and when this was, occasionally, though rarely, laid aside for awhile, amid the irrepressible mirth of childish amusement, her laugh had the ringing, silvery melody which seems the musical essence of enjoyment. For two successive summers we met and were inseparably intimate, and then four years elapsed before we were again together. During this interval Mary’s mother died, and she went far from my home, to reside with a distant relation. We had, from our first parting, corresponded regularly, and her letters were, like herself, poetical and visionary. I know not wherefore, for she wrote no murmur, but they left the impression that she was not satisfied with her new home, and my heart yearned to comfort her, to remove from her lot its loneliness, from her soul its dimness. But she shrunk, with what then appeared to me morbid delicacy, from all approach to confidence on this subject, and gradually grew in all things less communicative regarding herself, as if doubting the response of sympathy. There was evidently a constraint placed on her spontaneous emotions—a quiet concealment of her deeper interests, which to me spoke mournfully, and recalled that silent, dejected consciousness of mental and spiritual solitude, which is the saddest portion and the most touching consequence of an orphan’s unshared and melancholy destiny. It was not until long afterward that I learned the domestic trials and annoyances to which she had been subjected, and the dreary, joyless routine in which she dragged on the years that should have been her brightest ones.

It was with many a sweet anticipation of friendly, unreserved intercourse and affectionate solace—such dreams as are borne by loving angels to hearts strong in youth and rich in tenderness, that I looked impatiently forward to my next meeting with my old playmate, for now we had both glided from childhood to womanhood, and the firm bond was between us that links those who remember together. I shall never forget my astonishment when, after our first fond and impetuous greeting, I turned, with tearful eyes, to mark the alteration time had wrought in the appearance of my companion. She was calm and composed, almost to coldness, and there was no visible exhibition of the agitation struggling beneath, or of all the afflicting reminiscences which I knew were recalled by looking on my face again. She had grown from the timid, irresolute girl, to the proud, self-possessed woman, and her manner had the tranquil air of one aware of her own moral strength, and of the existence of impulses and feelings too pure and sacred to be lightly displayed to a world which had nothing in common with them. She was more beautiful than ever, and I have never seen a being whose polished, intellectual tranquillity was so faultlessly graceful. She had acquired the early maturity of mind given in kindness to those who are tried in their youth; for she had evidently “thought too long and darkly;” her feelings were still from their intensity, and hers was the reflective repose which, wearied and desponding, folds its drooping pinions and sleeps on the bosom of darkness.

Ah, me! it is a dreary thing to feel alone in the world—to have no eye brighten at our coming, no voice ever ready with its eager welcoming, nothing to tell us we are beloved, and that fond thoughts and wishes are around our onward pathway. O, ye who have never felt this worst of desolations—ye whose best affections bind ye still, who have no link broken, no yearnings unfulfilled, fold to your hearts the precious blessing that lives in domestic ties and speaks in household love, and greet kindly and gently those whose life is lonely—who look around them and find no answering gaze, who pine with many tears for one glimpse of the tenderness whose living light is daily yours, who go forward sadly and silently, with none to love them, save those who are angels in Heaven.

But there is a romance in every one’s experience, evanescent though it be; and at length its bright change rose upon Mary’s existence. I heard she was soon to be married, to a young clergyman, of whom all spoke in terms of approval and admiration. I sincerely rejoiced at an event so calculated to relieve at once her perplexities and regrets, and to summon sweet visions for one who had too long lived without affection in the world. I wrote to her, expressing all I felt—all my fervent hopes for her dawning welfare. I longed impatiently for her answer, anxious to discover if she realized as I wished the brighter career opening before her; but several weeks wended on, and brought me no reply. It was from another source I learned the dangerous and protracted illness of her lover, and a paper, tremulously directed by Mary’s hand, at length informed me of his death.

Finally a letter came, with its black seal. It was the last farewell of one who loved me—the last pouring forth of tenderness from a heart that was broken; and yet, sorrowful as those lines were, they spoke of hopes unshadowed and immortal—of a pilgrimage troubled and toilsome, but full of reward, and of all an enthusiast’s delusive anticipations in the sacred enterprise before her.

She wrote on the eve of her departure from her native land, and with her singular, acquired shrinking from the avowal of her feelings, she made no allusion to the connection recently broken; and not a word revealed the grief that clouded over her fairest prospects and sent her forth an exile. Frequently afterward I saw her name mentioned as one of unwavering zeal in her adopted cause, and faithfully devoted to the laborious responsibilities of her mission. But between herself and her early friends a gulf seemed to be, perhaps because she did not wish to revive the over-powering recollections of the past. The absence of all communication with those once dear to her, must have been intentional, for she was not one to forget. Three years of this unbroken existence of care and labor had gone by, and then I had thus accidentally learned the mournful doom of a being endowed with all earth’s purest impulses, yet so soon recalled from its wanderings. Hers is no uncommon history—for many such are on our daily annals. O! give them kind thoughts and words, for these are the sad heart’s treasured gems!





This world of ours is beautiful—right beautiful, I ween,

Are all its mountains tipt with gold, its valleys tinged with green,

Its thousand laughing streams that sport, half sunshine and half shade,

Like love’s first herald seen upon the rosy cheeked maid.

The springing flowers are beautiful that open to the day,

And spread their perfume far and wide along the sunny way;

The vine-clad rocks and shady dells that bask in beauty’s sheen;

This world of ours is beautiful—wherever it is seen.


This world of ours was beautiful in those good olden days

When knights would battle valiantly for ladies’ smiles and praise;

When in the list and on the turf, with lance and spear and sword,

These iron-handed men would meet no bond but plighted word.

Each castle was a fortress then; each man could bend the bow,

Or lead the dance, or join the song with voice as soft and low,

As maidens when at night they hear their lovers’ whispered praise;

Oh! was not the world beautiful in those good olden days?


This world of ours was beautiful, when troubadours first sang,

And castle hall and cottage roof with love and glory rang;

When high-born damsels clustered round—perhaps to hear of one

Who joined the armies of the Cross, to fight ’neath Syria’s sun;

How he had borne the banner high amid the thickest fight,

And placed his name where it will shine like stars amid the night;

And then bright eyes would brighter beam, despite the truant tear;

Oh! was not the world beautiful when minstrelsy was here?


This world of ours was beautiful when Rome was great and free,

And proudly shone her mountain-bird, the type of Liberty;

When Freedom found a resting-place within those trophied walls,

And circled with her eagle wing its temples and its halls;

When on the yellow Tiber’s wave the shouts of victory came,

And pride and glory mingled with the conqueror’s lauded name;

Then came the proud triumphal march, the heroes crowned with bays;

Oh! was not the world beautiful in those her palmy days?


This world of ours was beautiful when Venice ruled the tide,

And thousand voices rose to greet the old man’s ocean bride;

The waters gladly danced around the castles old and proud,

And from the latticed balconies, upon the passing crowd,

Gleamed forth the light of beauty’s eye—Venetia’s daughters fair,

With hearts as pure as were the gems that glistened in their hair;

As bold in danger, true in love, as brave men’s brides should be;

Oh! was not the world beautiful when Venice ruled the sea?


This world of ours was beautiful when ’neath Italia’s skies

Her passion sons, like meteor stars, flashed on their wondering eyes.

Born in that sunny clime of love, where beauty tints the air,

And earth and ocean, sun and shade, are more divinely fair;

No marvel that their minds upgrew full freighted with each tone,

And Love and Beauty sheltered them within their magic zone,

Till all they saw and all they felt found in each work a birth;

Oh! was not the world beautiful when Genius walked the earth!


This world of ours was beautiful when by fair Arno’s stream

Sweet Florence lay bedecked with gifts, like beauty in her dream;

So soft her skies, so mild her suns, such perfume in each breeze,

Such songs of gladness from her plains, such flowers upon the trees;

And then her dowered children stood like jewels in her crown,

Or sun-clad monuments on which Time’s rays come proudly down,

To gild with beauty e’en decay—but what decay hast thou?

Oh! was not the world beautiful when Florence decked her brow?


This world of ours was beautiful in England’s palmy times,

When merrily from church and tower pealed out the sportive chimes,

When deep within the greenwood haunts dwelt honest men and free,

With hearts as gay and minds as light as birds upon the tree;

Right honestly the day was passed; at night, upon the green,

All joining in the merry dance the young and old were seen,

And many a jocund song was sung, and many a tale was told;

Oh! was not the world beautiful in those good days of old?


This world of ours was beautiful when valiant men and true

Spread their white sails, and sought a home beyond the waters blue⁠—

They found it ’neath the forest old, ’mid wild and savage men,

Beside the ocean’s rocky shore, within the mountain glen;

And there was heard the childish laugh, and there the mother’s tone,

Brought joy and gladness in their sound to many an altar-stone;

Men toiled and strove, and strove and toiled, through all the weary hours,

Oh! was not the world beautiful, this western world of ours?


This world of ours was beautiful, when Freedom first awoke,

Its cradle song the trumpet call, its toy the sabre stroke,

Full armed, like Pallas, then she stood amid the deadly fight,

And man by man stood boldly up, and clenched their hands of might,

The tempest came, no cheek turned pale, no heart unnerved with fear,

They grasped their swords more tightly then—’twas victory or a bier;

Long was the struggle, hard the fight, but liberty was won;

Oh! was not the world beautiful beneath fair Freedom’s sun?


This world of ours was beautiful in times long, long ago,

When those good men of earnest souls dwelt with us here below;

Large was their faith in human kind; their mission seemed to be

To teach man all his duties here—Love, Faith and Energy,

To link each man to brother man, with links of firmest steel;

Then touch the spark of sympathy, and all the shock will feel;

Stamp the nobility of truth upon each deathless soul;

Oh! was not the world beautiful beneath such pure control?


This world of ours was beautiful, and still is so to me;

Since boyish days I’ve clung to it, with wildness and with glee;

Have laughed when others talked of wo beneath so fair a sky,

When time, like flights of singing birds, with melody went by,

Have roved amid its fairy bowers, and drank of every stream

Of joy and gladness, till I lived within a blissful dream,

And life, deep ladened with its fruits, slept like a weary child;

This world of ours is beautiful as ’twas when Eden smiled?


This world of ours is beautiful despite what cynics say;

There must be storms in winter time as well as flowers in May;

But what of that?—there’s joy in both the sunshine and the shade,

The light upon the mountain-top, the shadow in the glade.

Be free of Soul, and firm of Heart, read all life’s lessons right,

Nor look for roses in the snow, nor sunbeams in the night.

Up! up! to action, armed with Love, Faith and Energy;

And then this world is beautiful, as beautiful can be.





Spirit, my own proud spirit!

  We may not sleep in dust,

There is a path marked out for us

  Of a high and a holy trust;

Spirit, tried spirit, we were not born,

  To die as cravens die,

With no proud niche for the wreathed urn,

  No record on the sky.


We came up life together,

  We have lived but a few short years,

We have tasted well at the fountain head

  Of human hopes and fears;

Yet life is young, shall we not be so?

  Shall we not drink and sing

Of the many glorious hopes that flow

  From many a hidden spring?


Ay, and the streams shall gather

  In a broad and open sea,

The laving of whose crystal tide

  Is immortality;

There shall be a time when we shall rest,

  Some gentle summer even,

With a calm content, upon its breast,

  And an opening view of heaven.


Storms will be wild around us

  Before that time shall come,

And the thunder of blame will fill the air,

  And the voice of praise be dumb;

Yet as we draw from the glorious stars

  Beauty and light and love,

Hope’s wing shall gild the closing bars

  That shut us from above.


Spirit, my own proud spirit,

  Thou wilt not fail me now,

Thy hands shall wreathe the chaplet well

  And place it on my brow;

Spirit, tried spirit, we were not born

  To die as cravens die,

With no proud niche for the wreathed urn,

  No record on the sky.





Sarcoramphus Gryphus, male.

THE CONDOR. (Sarcoramphus Gryphus.)

This bird is one of the largest of the vultures. The early Spanish writers on America gave the most exaggerated accounts of its size and strength; and its true history and dimensions have been only recently ascertained. The bird was compared with the Roc of the Arabian romance writers. Acosta says that the bird called Condor is able singly to eviscerate and devour a whole sheep or a calf. Garcilaso de la Vega makes them measure 16 feet from tip to tip of the extended wings; he says their beaks are sufficiently strong to perforate and tear off a bull’s hide, and to rip out its entrails; and that a single Condor “will set upon and slay boys of ten or twelve years;” which last exaggeration, though now exploded, has found its way into our common school geographies.

Investigation has shown that the Condor is merely a large, perhaps not the largest of the vultures. “The Condor,” writes Mr. Bennett, “forms the type of a genus, a second species of which is the Vultur papa of Linnæus, the king of the vultures of British writers. They are both peculiar to the New World, but approach in their most essential characters very closely to the vultures of the Old Continent, differing from the latter principally in the large, fleshy, or rather cartilaginous, caruncle which surmounts their beaks, in the large size of their oval and longitudinal nostrils, placed almost at the very extremity of the cere; and in the comparative length of their quill feathers, the third being the longest of the series. The most important of these differences, the size and position of their nostrils, appears to be well calculated to add to the already highly powerful sense of smell possessed by the typical vulture, and for which the birds have been almost proverbially celebrated from the earliest ages. There is also a third species, the Californian vulture, two noble specimens of which, the only pair in Europe, are preserved in the London Zoological Society’s Museum, rivaling the Condor in bulk, and agreeing in every respect with the generic characters of the group, except in the existence of the caruncle, of which they are entirely destitute.

“In size the Condor is little, if at all, superior to the Bearded Griffin, the Lämmergeyer of the Alps, with which Buffon was disposed conjecturally to confound it, but to which it bears at most but a distant relation. The greatest authentic measurement scarcely carries the extent of its wings beyond fourteen feet, and it appears rarely to attain so gigantic a size. M. Humboldt met with none that exceeded nine feet, and was assured by many credible inhabitants of the province of Quito that they had never shot any that measured more than eleven. The length of a male specimen somewhat less than nine feet in expanse was three feet three inches from the tip of the beak to the extremity of the tail; and its height, when perching with the neck partly withdrawn, two feet eight inches. Its beak was two inches and three quarters in length, and an inch and a quarter in depth when closed.

“The beak of the Condor is straight at the base, but the upper mandible becomes arched toward the point, and terminates in a strong and well curved hook. The basal half is of an ash brown, and the remaining portion, toward the point, is nearly white. The head and neck are bare of feathers, and covered with hard, wrinkled, dusky reddish skin, on which are scattered some short brown or blackish hairs. On the top of the head, which is much flattened above, and extending some distance along the beak, is attached an oblong firm caruncle or comb, covered by a continuation of the skin which invests the head. This organ is peculiar to the male. It is connected to the beak only in its anterior part, and is separated from it at the base in such a manner as to allow a free passage of the air to the large oval nostrils, which are situated beneath it at that part. Beyond the eyes, which are somewhat elongated, and not sunk beneath the general surface of the head, the skin of the neck is, as it were, gathered into a series of descending folds, extending obliquely from the back of the head over the temples, to the under side of the neck, and there connected anteriorly with a lax membrane or wattle, capable of being dilated at pleasure, like that of the common turkey. The neck is marked by numerous deep parallel folds, produced by the habit of retracting the head, in which the bird indulges when at rest. In this position scarcely any part of the neck is visible.

“Round the lower part of the neck both sexes, the female as well as the male, are furnished with a broad white ruff of downy feathers, which forms the line of separation between the naked skin above and the true feathers covering the body below it. All the other feathers, with the exception of the wing coverts, and the secondary quill feathers, are of a bright black, generally mingled with a grayish tinge of greater or less intensity. In the female the wing coverts are blackish gray; but the males have their points, and frequently as much as half their length, white. The wings of the latter are consequently distinguished from those of the female by their large white patches. The secondary quill feathers of both sexes are white on the outer side. The tail is short and wedge shaped. The legs are excessively thick and powerful, and are colored of a blueish gray, intermingled with whitish streaks. Their elongated toes are united at the base by a loose but very apparent membrane, and are terminated by long black talons of considerable thickness, but very little curved. The hinder toe is shorter than the rest, and its talon, although more distinctly curved, is equally wanting in strength, a deficiency which renders the foot much less powerful as an organ of prehension than that of any other of the large birds of the raptorial order.”

The Condor is found in various parts of the vast mountain chain on the western border of the American continent, but it is most common in Peru and Chile. Its habitation is most frequently at an elevation of 10,000 or 15,000 feet above the level of the sea, and there these birds are seen in groups of three or four, but never in large companies like the true vultures. Some of the mountain peaks bear names which in the Indian tongue mean Condor’s Look-out, Condor’s Roost and Condor’s Nest. Two of them will attack a vicuna, a heifer or even a puma, and overcome it by repeated strokes of their beaks and talons. When gorged, says Humboldt, they sit sullen and sombre on the rocks; and when thus overloaded with food they will suffer themselves to be driven before the hunter rather than take wing. They do not attack men or even children, although it is admitted that two of them would be a match for a powerful man without weapons. Sir Francis Head gives an amusing account of a contest between one of his Cornish miners and a gorged Condor, which lasted an hour, and terminated in the escape of the bird.



My Dear Jeremy.—I presume you are shaking the spray from your locks, and are over head and ears in love with salt water, while I am among the weeping willows in these days of hydrophobia, when water—that we cannot get at—provokes a feeling of madness. You glory in a proprietorship over which your plough passes, turning up soil that is all your own, while the nodding grain, golden and pulpy, ripens in your absence for your abundant granaries, while I cultivate this, my small patch, “a tenant at will,” whose harvest of gleaning would be blown to the winds without a painstaking care and watchfulness. You are the lord of acres, while I wander around forbidden enclosures, and look upon many a Castle of Indolence longing but for a yard of ground all my own, upon which to plant a firm foot, to sound the challenge and cry—war! The very utterness of poverty is grandeur and riches, compared to the feeling of having the pent-up energies which have found a full outlet in enterprise, growing fiery in inaction, and panting for room, continually battling at the heart, and knocking in vain for freedom and exercise. But if you have ever felt the utter insignificance of wealth and high advantage combined with indolence and inactivity, and forever do-nothingness, before the godlike attributes of persevering energy and indomitable will, you have felt the pride of manhood in its full force and power. You have reaped in anticipation the rewards of high courage, of manly resolve, of personal industry and victory. You have enjoyed in your day-dreams the full fruition of assured success—and awoke to hope on, to resolve and to conquer. Consider me, my dear Jeremy, as winding myself up for the next seven years, after having run down—as having stopped, if you please, to blow; and while you are luxuriating in the surf, and shaking the briny water from your shoulders, as throwing off surfdom, with a defiant air, and a determined purpose of taking a few strides forward, to meet that “good time a coming.”

Who does not love the sound of the breakers at Cape May, who has once listened to their wild melody? What a chance for love-making is the evening stroll upon the beach. On the one side the rugged bank, on which the white houses sit like a flock of wild-birds suddenly alighted, and the faint twinkle of rush-like lights dancing like fire-flies in the night air; on the other, the wild waters—sad emblem of the wild unrest of the human heart—their huge waves reflecting from their sides the quiet light of the moon, while the white-caps come trooping in, like a squadron of dragoons, with their plumes dancing, and a roar, as if the tread of an army were near, and a thousand park of artillery were booming in the distance. The music of rich voices hushed amid the uproar—the light of kind eyes sparkling with a subdued eloquence—the loved face impressively thoughtful, indicating that God has laid his hand upon the heart, and whispered amid the tumult of its worldly thoughts, “be thou still!”

It was my good fortune to see both Cape May and the Falls of Niagara, for the first time, by moonlight, and whether the hush of evening naturally associated in the mind with twilight, deepened the impressions of awe and wonder with which I gazed upon them, or to the greatness of the novelty was added through the misty twilight, a dim religious sanctity to the impression, I know not, but they have never since charmed me so much in the broad glare of day, as in the evening, with a quiet moon looking placidly down upon the flashing foam, seemingly rebuking the uproar.

The bathers, too, at mid-day, screaming like sea-birds amid the surf, with their many-colored garments dancing amid the foam—beauty floating upon the breakers as calmly as if reposing upon the virgin snow of her own pillows. Manhood breasting the billow, and riding securely far out where the huge porpoise rolls lazily along, while tiny feet go patting, and tiny hands go clapping along the shore, the very idleness and luxury of the sport impressing upon the beholder a sense of enjoyment, a feeling of relief from the work-day world, a consciousness of manhood and freedom above the value of dollars—a heart eased of the oppressiveness of brick and mortar, and open to a sense most acute of the very luxury of being idle.

If Philadelphians had made half as much of Cape May as the New Yorkers have of Saratoga, or the Yankees have of Newport, its visiters from all parts of the country would number tens of thousands; but I question whether its present character of being Philadelphia in holyday dress, let loose for a romp, does not add much to its charms. The relief from absurd ceremony, where every face is familiar. The easy, unrestrained life, the freedom of remark and retort, and the exuberant gayety of the whole company, add to the enjoyment of the place, and make it a home in a family circle greatly enlarged and full of good humor.

But, my dear Jeremy, you must have observed that at Cape May we got along comfortably, without the towering and overshadowing influence of the “upper ten thousand,” which stands up to be worshiped by the people without money or brains. It might be a serious question, how long a man may exist, with great self-complacency, without heart, or intellect, yet with a purse well lined with gold—regarding the world of men and of matter as especially made for him—the lord paramount of the soil, and of the sinews, which of right belong to his betters. Cannot some one curious in nature and philosophy, analyze one of this genus, and tell the world how the appearance of humanity can be preserved without a single attribute of it, existing life-like and active in his breast. The whole effort of this air-drawn animal appears to be to rise, to get up in society, to overlook the pigmies who toil and sweat for bread—to loose his identity in the upper circle, that he may forget his grandfather, the soap-boiler, upon whose bubbles he has been shot upward—as we expel a pea from an air-gun. Prick the bubble, and the thing vanishes into air, without leaving behind him a trace of existence of the value of a pepper-corn, and so,

      ——“Grows dim and dies

All that this world is proud of.”

The gifts of God are equal. He sheds upon us all the same glorious sunlight, and gives us the same heritage of dew and showers. The air has no monopolist, but its balmy odors as kindly kiss as well the beggar as the king. The mountain stream and the mountain flower acknowledge no master but the hand that formed them. The very beast that roams over the boundless prairies, and tosses his wild mane to the breeze, snuffs in an atmosphere sanctified by its freeness. God, over all his own works sheds the benignant light of universal benevolence and goodwill. The hues of a heaven-tinted charity blend kindly together the world over—the laws of a love undistinguishing are impressed upon all nature.

It is man—but a handful of his mother earth—that wrongs her kind bosom, and says to his brother, stand aside, the heritage is mine—we are not equals in birth-right. I claim by pre-emption a supremacy which makes me thy master. The very purple I wear, when contrasted with the faded russet of thy poor garb, makes me thy lord. The jeweled rings of these fingers clasp thy neck, and make thee bondsman. Thou shalt go at my bidding and come at my call. Thou shalt toil until thy weary bones crack, to pamper to my luxurious desires! Thou shalt not even think but at thy peril! By the high authority of what is called LAW, thou art enslaved!

By this right of law, how many wrongs are done, which the cold eye of day gazes on in silence, whilst hearts wrung with anguish weep on unpitied. This strong arm, when its fist clutches dollars, how terrible is it in its willingness to crush and overwhelm the unsheltered, the unbefriended, the poor, unpitied victim. But if a breast sparkling with diamonds interposes, how palsied and feeble becomes the blow—the justice, the equity of the law, how considerate and kind!

Yet law, according to the lawgiver, “is the perfection of reason,” which must account, I suppose, for the difficulty which the learned counsel experiences in expounding it to an “intelligent jury.” The poor thief therefore remains in profound ignorance of the equity of the decision, by which he is consigned to three years of penitence is solitary confinement, while his gayer brother in crime dashes through the streets with his carriage and scarlet housings, basking in the worship of wondering and approving eyes, his penalty for having started a bank, and stopped it, by which thousands of poor men lost the dollars which paid for the equipage, and furnished the viands for his pampered appetite, the meanest of which would have driven starvation from their doors. He is beyond the law. Let an hundred operatives agree in thinking that the wretched pittance for their daily labor will not suffice to feed the mouths of a half dozen famishing children, the law has its kind and protecting eye upon them at once—and if they dare express so infamous a sentiment, it immediately takes care of them as conspirators. But the masters of an hundred mills may openly avow their determination to close their doors and send starvation into a whole village, the law instantly closes its watchful eye, and dozes over the scene, deeming it right and proper that capital should be indulged in its absurdities.

Should John, upon the box of a gentleman’s carriage, come in contact with the hub of the humble cab of Jehu, and thereby disfigure the carriage and irritate the temper of the great owner, his honor, who may have had dealings with him, deals with Jehu, who is glad to get off for his five dollars, and thinks it a kindness that he is not imprisoned for the intolerable crime of John not giving an inch of the road to a vulgar cabman. When diamonds are trumps, take care of knaves.

It is a fiction of law—for even “perfect reason” has her fictions, it seems—that people who are standing at a distance in a riot, are as culpable as those who are throwing the brickbats—and it is certain they are the more likely to be killed, probably from a humane feeling of not wishing to irritate those who are too near—and it is for this reason, we presume, that after the riot is over, a number of citizens, against whom nothing can be proved, are arrested, to assert the majesty of the law, while the real rioters and murderers are perfectly unknown to the police. The law being discriminative thus administered, as well as stringent when necessary.

Great names, which provoke a riot, or lack the nerve and manliness to suppress it, have an overshadowing influence, which awes even the majesty of the law—it would be indecorous in the law to meddle with greatness, even when it is impertinent.

“La-w me!” exclaims an old lady, who has upset the contents of her frying-pan into the fire. But the poor soul little knows the calamity she invokes. It is doubtful whether fire and frying-pan would not follow, if her request were complied with. The law being at times both expensive and speedy.

So wags the world along.

But, my dear Jeremy, I have rambled somewhat in this letter, so without more ado, I’ll CUT this.

G. R. G.



By my right hand, Graham! by my right hand, which for —— odd years hath traveled and travailed over much foolscap, (and under much fool’s-cap quoth the fiend,) I am more and more convinced of the truth of the words of the preacher, “Vanity of vanities! all is vanity!” I have just laid aside “Mardi,” (the gift of my warm-hearted friend, L. G. C., of the Knickerbocker,) it lies atop of old Du Bartas and some withered budlets of forget-me-not, and in like manner I sit with a few fragmentaries of old literature at bottom for my primiter, some tender remembrances for my secondary, and for the alluvial stratum of my pericranicks (as gentle Charles hath it) these fripperies by the Author of Typee. Confound the book! there are such beautiful Aurora-flashes of light in it that you can almost forgive the puerilities—it is a great net-work of affectation, with some genuine gold shining through the interstices.

Let us turn over the leaves a little—hear ye now⁠—

“And what to me thus pining for some one to page me a quotation from Burton on Blue-Devils.” V. I. p. 15.

What is paging a quotation?

“Anoint the ropes and they will travel deftly through the subtle windings of the blocks.” p. 33.

Why not say—“apply some oleaginous substance to the ambulatory cords, and prevent the inarticulate dissonance caused by the inharmonious attrition of the flaxen fibres against the ligneous particles?”

But this passage I especially commend:

“Good old Arcturion! Maternal craft, that rocked me so often in thy heart of oak, I grieve to tell how I deserted thee on the broad deep. (‘Maternal craft—maternal old oaken-hearted craft—maternal old oaken-cradle hearted craft’ is good!) So far from home, with such a motley crew, so many islands, whose heathen babble echoing through thy Christian hull must have grated harshly on every carline.” p. 38.

“Many there are who can fall,” says Martinus Scriblerius, “but few can arrive at the felicity of falling gracefully.”

How beautifully he embellishes the most commonplace ideas:

“Among savages, severe personal injuries are, for the most part, accounted but trifles. When a European would be taking to his couch in despair the savage would disdain to recline.” p. 96.

“At Ravavai I had stepped ashore some few months previous; and now was embarked on a cruise for the whale, whose brain enlightens the world!” p. 1.

Jarl steals a keg of tobacco⁠—

“From the Arcturion he had brought along with him a small half-keg, at bottom impacted with a solitary layer of sable Negrohead, fossil-marked, like the primary stratum of the geologists.” (Ahem! primary stratum fossil-marked!) p. 68.

He surmiseth that Samoa likes to get swipesy⁠—

“Nor did I doubt but that the Upoluan, like all Polynesians, much loved getting high of head; and in that state would be more intractable than a Black Forest boar.”

Sometimes he breaks into hexameter:

“In the verdant glen of Ardair, far in the silent interior of Amma,

 Shut in by hoar old cliffs, Yillah the maiden abode.”

This reminds one of Evangeline⁠—

“In the Acadian land, on the shores of the basin of Minos,

 Distant, secluded, still, the little village of Grand Pré

 Lay in the fruitful valley.”

Let us hexametrize another passage, and we will have done with these fopperies:

“’Tis no great valor to perish sword in hand, and bravado

 On lip; cased all in panoply complete. For even the alli-

 Gator dies in his mail, and the sword-fish never surrenders.

 To expire, mild-eyed, in one’s bed, transcends the death of Epam-Inondas.” p. 46.

I have done with Mardi—one is reminded in reading it (after Typee) that “there is as much skill in making dikes as in raising mounts—there is an art of diving as well as flying,” and who knows but what the author, after attaining a comfortable elevation by his former works, may not have made this plunge on purpose, as men do who climb to the top of a high mast that they may dive the deeper.

Now do those crushed, withered budlets of forget-me-not, peeping from under the book covers, remind me of those beautiful hope-flowers that opened their pale blue eyes in the morning of my life, and bloomed and drooped—and passed away⁠—

  “How fair was then the flower—the tree!

   How silver-sweet the fountain’s fall!

 The soulless had a soul to me!

   My life its own life lent to all!


“The universe of things seemed swelling

   The panting heart to burst its bound,

 And wandering fancy found a dwelling

   In every shape, thought, deed and sound.

 Germed in the mystic buds, reposing,

   A whole creation slumbered mute;

 Alas! when from the buds unclosing,

   How scant and blighted sprung the fruit!”

Alas! alas! young life, and young hopes are not perennials; even in the lofty conservatories and crystal hot-houses of wealth and station they flush into a sickly existence, and then perish like the meanest flower by the wayside. Did it ever strike you how much we are alike in this particular? Every one looking back upon his past life as the shipwrecked merchant looks upon the broad sea that hath swallowed up irretrievable treasures. Do you believe that if one had the power of investing his new created babes with a course of life, that he would say, “Do as I have done—pass through my joys and my afflictions, and in the experience of my experience you will be happy!” Do you believe that any one—even the wisest, the purest, the best could say this? By my faith, I do not! And the great focal-glass of a common destiny brings down prismatic, many-hued humanity to a point hue, as a convex lens gathers and concentrates prism-bundles of light and heat from the broad disk of the sun. Human suffering is the chord universal that swells from the vibration of numberless strings.

“Thou seest we are not all alone unhappy;

This vast and universal theatre

Contains more woful pageants than the scene

Whereon we play—”

But, “Mardi” and forget-me-nots have spoiled three good sheets of foolscap, and I fear that I am too much i’ the sentimental vein; let me therefore conclude with quoting a sweet little piece of philosophy, and lay aside these lender’s books for a period.

    “A swallow in the spring

Came to our granary, and ’neath the eaves

Essayed to make a nest, and then did bring

    Wet earth, and straw, and leaves.

    “Day after day she toiled,

With patient heart; but ere her work was crowned

Some sad mishap the tiny fabric spoiled,

    And dashed it to the ground.

    “She found the ruin wrought,

But, not cast down, forth from the place she flew,

And, with her mate, fresh earth and grasses brought,

    And built her nest anew.

    “But scarcely had she placed

The last soft feather on its ample floor,

When wicked hand, or chance, again laid waste,

    And wrought the ruin o’er.

    “But still her heart she kept,

And toiled again; and last night, hearing calls,

I looked, and lo! three little swallows slept

    Within the earth-made walls.

    “What truth is here, O man!

Hath hope been smitten in its early dawn!

Have clouds o’ercast thy purpose, trust or plan?

    Have FAITH and struggle on!”


Here endeth the second fifth.—Richard Haywarde.


Characteristics of Literature. Illustrated by the Genius of Distinguished Men. By Henry T. Tuckerman. Phila.: Lindsay & Blakiston. 1 vol. 12mo.

Mr. Tuckerman has written many interesting books, but we think the present volume is his most attractive if not his best production. It is characterized by his usual refinement of analysis, wealth of illustration, felicity of allusion, and mellow richness of style, while in the range it evinces over widely varied provinces of thought and character, it indicates more versatility than any of his other compositions. The volume includes a discussion and representation of eleven departments of literature, through a searching examination of as many authors, each of whom is taken as the exponent of a class. Thus Channing stands for the Moralist, Sir Thomas Browne for the Philosopher, Swift for the Wit, Shenstone for the Dillettante, Charles Lamb for the Humorist, and Macaulay for the Historian. The selection of men to illustrate the subjects is, of course, not free from cavil. We should say that Burke was not exactly the man to stand as an expression of the Rhetorician, for his rhetoric, though matchless of its kind, is secondary to his philosophy. He appears to us, even as analyzed by Mr. Tuckerman, in the character of a profound, vigorous and vital thinker, and is no more a rhetorician, in any exclusive sense of the term, than Bacon, Hooker, Taylor, or even Milton. Where style is the incarnation of thought, the visible image of the mind that employs it—and this is its nature in all the greatest authors—the word rhetoric is hardly applicable to it. Macaulay is more emphatically the rhetorician than Burke.

Select Comedies; Translated from the Italian of Goldoni, Giraud and Nota. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 12mo.

A volume like the present, giving the English reader a good idea of the spirit and form of Italian comedy, has long been wanted, and we have little doubt that it will be successful. To the lover of the English drama the plays may seem to lack solid character and unctuous humor; but they are still distinguished by a fertility in the invention of ludicrous incidents and positions, and a mischievous quick-footed spirit of intrigue, that no person with a sense of the comic can read them without exhilaration. The translations are, we believe, from an American pen, and appear to be well executed. Six complete comedies are given, and the translator has been fortunate in his selections both in respect to merit and variety. The two comedies of Goldoni are alone richly worth the price of the book.

Kaloolah, or Journeyings to the Djebel Kumri. An Autobiography of Jonathan Romer. Edited by W. S. Mayo, M. D. 1 vol. 12mo.

It is something strange for a writer to present himself for the first time as a candidate for public favor with a volume indicating so much power and originality of mind, and such practiced talents of composition as the present. The book is a regular tale of adventures, as interesting as exciting incidents racily told can make it, and inweaved with the story are many graphic descriptions of scenery and keen delineations of character. Considered in respect to the originality of its conception, the new vein of romance it opens, and the admirable method of the narration, we think the volume cannot fail to attract the attention which it will certainly reward.

The Earth and Man: Lectures on Comparative Physical Geography, in its Relation to the History of Mankind. By Arnold Guyot. Boston: Gould, Kendall & Lincoln. 1 vol. 12mo.

The author of this valuable Manual is Professor of Physical Geography and History in the same institution to which Agassiz is attached, and originally delivered the present lectures in French to an audience in Boston. They have been elegantly translated by Professor Felton, of Harvard University, and are very warmly recommended by the New England Savans for their union of profundity and simplicity. The subject is one of the most important in the whole range of science, and is one in which all can take an interest, and all obtain information, as popularized by Professor Guyot. Agassiz says of the book and its author: “Having been his friend from childhood, as a fellow student in college, and as colleague in the same university, I may be permitted to express my high sense of the value of his attainments. Mr. Guyot has not only been in the best school, that of Ritter and Humboldt, and become familiar with the present state of the science of our earth, but he has himself in many instances drawn new conclusions from the facts now ascertained, and presented most of them in a new point of view. Several of the most brilliant generalizations developed in his lectures, are his; and if more extensively circulated, will not only render the study of geography more attractive, but actually show it in its true light, namely, as the science of the relations which exist between nature and man, throughout history.”

The Life of Maximilien Robespierre. With Extracts from his Unpublished Correspondence. By G. H. Lewes. Phila.: Casey & Hart. 1 vol. 12mo.

The author of this biography is but little known in this country, and has hardly received his deserts from the critics on either side of the water. He is a clear, close, vigorous thinker, an accomplished scholar, and a nervous, condensed and brilliant, though slightly aphoristic writer. Though his ideas and style occasionally betray the influence of Carlyle, and though his English nature has been a little modified by an infusion of French metaphysics, he generally appears as an independent as well as a forcible thinker. In the present volume, though he appears largely indebted to the works of Lamartine, Michelet, and Louis Blanc, he has still produced a book original in the main, and has been especially happy in steering a middle course between those writers who have represented Robespierre as a monstrosity of malignity and cruelty, and those who have tried hard to make him appear a persecuted and virtuous patriot, whose most questionable acts sprung from exalted motives. The reader closes the book with the feeling that he has gained a better insight into the character of the immortally infamous revolutionary leader than he had before. The letters of Robespierre, which the author obtained in MS. from Louis Blanc, and the extracts from his speeches in the Convention, add much to the interest and value of the volume.

History of Maria Antoinette. By John S. C. Abbott. With Engravings. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 16mo.

This is another of Mr. Abbott’s beautiful series of pocket histories, having for its subject a story so exciting and so mournful that the novelist or dramatist could hardly treat its incidents with more pathetic effect than the chronicler who confines himself to the literal facts. The characteristic merit of Mr. Abbott’s books is the knowledge they display not merely of their subjects but of the exact nature of the ignorance of the general class of readers, and this merit is well illustrated in the present volume. The French Revolution is to most minds a confused mass of terrible events without any connecting principles; but few can read its history, as far as it is presented in Mr. Abbott’s simple and orderly narrative, without obtaining clearer ideas of the whole matter.

A History of American Baptist Missions in Asia, Africa, Europe and North America. By William Gammell, A. M., Professor in Brown University. Boston: Gould, Kendall & Lincoln. 1 vol. 12mo.

We like the present volume for the indication it gives of the rich materials for history and biography which lie almost unused in the various records of Christian missions. All the heroic qualities developed in man and woman by religious principles and religious passions, are visible in those records to the initiated eye, but they are commonly so submerged in the affected phraseology and sectarian jargon of mediocre compilers, that they are commonly set aside as vulgar and fanatical by the general reader. Professor Gammell has written a volume in which all the worn and wasted terms of the pedants of cant are discarded, and the subject, as far as the Baptist missions are concerned, is treated in a style intelligible to all who have any perception of beauty, holiness or heroism. The work, apart from its theological character, is one of great interest and excellence.

Sacred Rhetoric; or Composition and Delivery of Sermons. By Henry J. Ripley. Boston: Gould, Kendall & Lincoln. 1 vol. 12mo.

This treatise should be carefully pondered by all clergymen who have a contempt for the graces and proprieties of composition, arising from their apprehension of being interesting to their congregations. Professor Ripley has produced a searching treatise, in which, with a true critical remorselessness, he lays bare the defects of arrangement and composition most likely to beset the productions of his profession, and gives a clear statement of those principles which should guide the brain and pen of the preacher. The volume also includes Dr. Ware’s admirable “Hints on Extemporaneous Preaching.”

History of Wonderful Inventions. Illustrated with numerous Engravings on Wood. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 12mo.

The publishers of this elegantly printed volume have included it in a series called the Boy’s Own Library, but its interest and value are hardly confined to youth. It is a book containing carefully written accounts of the invention of the Mariner’s Compass, Gunpowder, Clocks, Printing, the Telescope and Microscope, the Steam-Engine, the Electric Telegraph, and many other wonderful events in the history of the intellect. We never read a volume of this sort without giving a new and vivid impression of the grandeur of human nature, considered as possessing the powers of creation and combination.

Manual of Ancient Geography and History. By Wilhelm Putz. Translated from the German. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 12mo.

Professor Green, of Brown University, is the American editor of this valuable manual, and his name is a guarantee that it has been revised and corrected with scrupulous care. To the general student of history the volume will be of great service, as it maps out the whole ground of historical study, gives the names of the authorities for the history of each nation, and in the smallest possible space consistent with dearness, presents a view of the history, geography, religion, literature and art of all the ancient nations, European and Asiatic. The work indicates an erudition as minute as it is vast.

The Spy, a Tale of the Neutral Ground. By the Author of The Pilot. New York: Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

Longevity is no characteristic of novels, and Old Parr is the last name which could be applied to a hero of fiction. The romances which flare in the parlors of one year are pretty sure to repose in the cemeteries of the next. To this empirical law, Cooper’s Spy is one of the honorable exceptions. It at once attained popularity, and it has kept it, surviving all those mutations of the public taste which, since its first appearance, have consigned so many brilliant fictions to oblivion. As an old friend in a new dress, we welcome this volume. Its value is enhanced by the revision of the author, and the addition of an introduction and notes.

A Visit to Monasteries in the Levant. By the Hon. Robert Curzon. New York: Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

The author of this volume is careful to write himself down an “honorable” on his title page, and the whole tone of the composition evidences that self-satisfaction which is so apt to accompany social position. Though the reader is inclined to be prejudiced against an amateur author who assumes so confident a tone, the feeling wears away as he reads the volume. It contains a great deal of information pleasantly told, has some capital sketches of curious character, and ranks among the sprightliest of recent books of travels. The American edition is illustrated by numerous wood-cuts.

The Adventures of Captain Bonneville, U. S. A., in the Rocky Mountains and the Far West. Digested from his Journal and Illustrated from various other sources. By Washington Irving. New York: Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

This delightful work forms the tenth volume of the revised edition of Irving’s works, and has for its subject a theme especially interesting at the present time, when more than ever, “westward the course of empire takes its way.” We hardly know of a more felicitous partnership than that of Bonneville and Irving—one to perform the deeds of adventure which the other records.

Life in the Far West. By George Frederic Ruxton. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 12mo.

The author of this volume died at an early age, but not before he had partly fulfilled the destiny to which his talents and adventurous spirit pointed. “His adventures in Mexico and the Rocky Mountains,” and the present work, indicate not merely the courage and enthusiasm of a traveler, but much felicity in transferring to other minds the objects and incidents which filled his own.

Pottleton Legacy.

This is the title of a novel, by Albert Smith, published in the cheap form of the present day, by Carey & Hart. It is a pleasant, readable, and interesting work, and will be found caustic as well as funny. The characters are well sustained and the plot well developed.


Anaïs Toudouze


Boulevart St. Martin, 61

Toilettes de Longchamps,

Chapeaux de Mme. Baudry, r. Richelieu, 87—Plumes et fleurs Chagot ainé, r. Richelieu, 81,

Robes de Camille—Dentelles de Violard, r. Choiseul 2bis.

Graham’s Magazine.







My father, he was not a king,

A soldier brave was he.

He fell responding to the call

That made his Country free.

Yes! let me like a Soldier fall,

Upon some open plain.

This breast expanding for the ball,

To blot out ev’ry stain.

No prouder title I would claim,

No prouder boast! ’tis well,

The blood that courses thro’ my veins

No brighter birth may tell,

The blood that courses thro’ my veins

No brighter birth may tell.

No brighter birth may tell.


Brave manly hearts confer my doom

That gentler ones may tell,

Howe’er forgot, unknown my tomb,

I like a Soldier fell.

Howe’er forgot, unknown my tomb,

I like a Soldier fell,

I like a Soldier fell!





My mother she was not a queen!

  Nor titles graced her brow;

But hers a free and noble heart,

  In heaven rests ere now.

And I in Freedom’s mould am cast,

  No prouder boast! ’tis well,

The blood that courses thro’ my veins

  No brighter birth may tell.





I only ask of that proud race

  Which ends its blaze in me,

To die the last and not disgrace

  Its ancient chivalry.

Tho’ o’er my clay no banner wave,

  Nor trumpet requiem swell,

Enough, they murmur o’er my grave,

  He like a Soldier fell.





There is a land where Freedom dwells

  A land where all are blest,

A land that holds the glorious tombs

  Of heroes now at rest;

That land I love, it is my home,

  Of it I boast, ’tis well!

The blood that courses thro’ my veins

  No brighter birth may tell.

Transcriber’s Notes:

Archaic spellings and hyphenation have been retained as well as some spellings peculiar to Graham’s. Punctuation has been corrected without note. Other errors have been corrected as noted below. For illustrations, some caption text may be missing or incomplete due to condition of the originals used for preparation of the eBook.


page 75, In the mornining ==> In the morning

page 76, derelection of Hubert ==> dereliction of Hubert

page 77, up the close-pins, ==> up the clothes-pins,

page 77, over the close-fold, ==> over the clothes-fold,

page 78, its apprisal, and then ==> its appraisal, and then

page 85, persistance in whatever ==> persistence in whatever

page 87, ere I had had heard ==> ere I had heard

page 91, with an unfaultering and ==> with an unfaltering and

page 93, sprained ancle. Gentle ==> sprained ankle. Gentle

page 93, world was you doing ==> world were you doing

page 93, the bed of Dalhias ==> the bed of Dahlias

page 93, Your beautiful Dalhias ==> Your beautiful Dahlias

page 95, the battle of Corrunna ==> the battle of Corunna,

page 96, harrass that honorable ==> harass that honorable

page 107, was brought fourth wounded, ==> was brought forth wounded,

page 107, some characteristic attententions ==> some characteristic attentions

page 109, the day thus began in ==> the day thus begun in

page 118, played, eat together, ==> played, ate together,

page 122, I poured over ==> I pored over

page 122, a strange, quiet enthuasm, ==> a strange, quiet enthuasm,

page 126, beak was too inches ==> beak was two inches

page 127, common in Peru and Chili ==> common in Peru and Chile

page 131, betray the ininfluence ==> betray the influence

page 132, By William Gammel ==> By William Gammell

music page 2, But her’s a free ==> But hers a free



[The end of Graham's Magazine Vol. 35 No. 2 August 1849 edited by George Rex Graham]