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Title: Graham's Magazine Vol. 35 No. 5 November 1849

Date of first publication: 1849

Author: George Rex Graham

Date first posted: July 26, 2017

Date last updated: July 26, 2017

Faded Page eBook #20170724

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


Vol. XXXV.      November, 1849.      No. 5.

Table of Contents

Fiction, Literature and Other Articles

Jasper St. Aubyn
Men at Home: or The Pretty Man-Hater
A Year and A Day: or The Will
Major Anspach
The Battle of Trenton
Mr. Merritt and His Family
The Life Insurance
The Balize
Wild-Birds of America
Editor’s Table
Review of New Books

Poetry, Music, and Fashion

The Broken Household
Fragments of an Unfinished Story
The Fear of Death
The Seminoles’ Last Look
To My Sister E . . . . A.
Bunker-Hill at Midnight
Spiritual Presence
Flower Fancies
Le Follet
Wake, Lady, Wake

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

Engraved and Printed expressly for Graham’s Magazine by J. M. Butler.


Vol. XXXV.     PHILADELPHIA, NOVEMBER, 1849.     No. 5.






(Continued from page 213.)

Reader, the heart of man is a strange compound, a deceitful thing.

Jasper St. Aubyn did love Theresa Allan, as I have said before, with all the love which he could bestow on any thing divine or human. His passion for the possession of her charms, both personal and mental, was, as his passions ever were, inordinate. His belief in her excellence, her purity, in the stability of her principles, the impregnable strength of her virtue, could not be proved more surely than by the fact, that he had never dared an attempt to shake them. His faith in her adoration for himself was as firm-fixed as the sun in heaven. And, lastly, his conviction of the constancy of his own love toward her, of the impossibility of that love’s altering or perishing, was strong as his conviction of his own being.

But he was one of those singularly constituted beings, who will never take an easy path when he has the option of one more difficult; never follow the straight road when he can see a tortuous byway leading to the same end.

Had his father, as he pretended, desired to thwart his will, or prevent his marriage with Theresa, for that very cause he would have toiled indefatigably, till he had made her his own in the face of day. Partly swayed by a romantic and half chivalrous feeling, which loved to build up difficulties for the mere pleasure of surmounting them, partly urged on by pure willfulness and recklessness of temper, he chose evil for his good, he rushed into deceit where truth would in fact have served his purpose better. A boyish love of mystery and mischief might probably have had its share likewise in his strange conduct, and a sort of self-pride in the skill with which he managed his plot, and worked the minds of older men into submission to his own will. Lastly, to compel Theresa to this sacrifice of her sense of duty and propriety, to this abandonment of principle to passion, appeared to his perverted intellect a mighty victory, an overwhelming proof of her devotedness to his selfish will.

If there were any darker and deeper motive in his mind, it was unconfessed to himself; and, in truth, I believe, that none such then existed. If such did in after times grow up within him, it arose probably from a perception of the fatal facility which that first fraud, with its elaborate deceits had given him for working further evil.

Verily, it is wise to pray that we be not tempted. The perilous gift of present opportunity has made many an one, who had else lived innocent, die, steeped to the very lips in guilt.

Such were the actuating motives of his conduct; of hers pure love, and the woman’s dread of losing what she loved, by over-vehement resistance.

At the dead of a dark, gusty night in autumn, when the young moon was seen but at rare intervals between the masses of dense driving wrack which swept continuously across the leaden-colored firmament before the wailing west winds, when the sere leaves came drifting down from the great trees, like the ghosts of departed hopes, when the long mournful howl of some distant bandog baying the half seen moon, and the dismal hootings of the answered owls, were the only sounds abroad, the poor girl stole, like a guilty creature, from her virgin chamber, and, faltering at every ray of misty light, every dusky shadow that wavered across her way, as she threaded the long corridors, crept stealthily down the great oaken staircase, and joined her young lover in the stone hall below.

Her palfrey and his hunter stood saddled at the foot of the terrace steps, and, almost without a word exchanged between them, she found herself mounted and riding, with her right hand clasped in his burning fingers, through the green chase toward the village.

The clock was striking midnight—ill-omened hour for such a rite as that—in the tower of the parish church, as Jasper St. Aubyn sprung to the ground before the old Saxon porch, and lifting his sweet bride from the saddle, fastened the bridles of their horses to the hooks in the churchyard-wall, and entered the low-browed door which gave access to the nave.

A single dim light burned on the altar, by which the old vicar, robed in his full canonicals, awaited them, with his knavish assistant, and the two witnesses beside him.

Dully and unimpressively, at that unhallowed hour, and by that dim light, the sacred rite was performed, and the dread adjuration answered, and the awful bond undertaken, which, through all changes, and despite all chances of this mortal life makes two into one flesh, until death shall them sever.

The gloom, the melancholy, the nocturnal horror of the scene sunk deeply on Theresa’s spirit; and it was in the midst of tears and shuddering that she gave her hand and her heart to one, who, alas! was too little capable of appreciating the invaluable treasure he had that night been blessed withal. And even when the ceremony was performed, and she was his immutably and forever, as they rode home as they had come, alone, through the dim avenues and noble chase, which were now in some sort her own, there was none of that buoyancy, that high, exulting hope, that rapture of permitted love which is wont to thrill the bosoms of young and happy brides.

Nor, on the following day, was the melancholy gloom, which, despite all her young husband’s earnest and fond endeavors to cheer and compose her, still overhung her mind, in anywise removed by the tidings which reached the manor late in the afternoon.

The aged vicar, so the tale went, had been called by some unusual official duty to the parish church, long after it was dark, and in returning home had fallen among the rocks, having strayed from the path, and injured himself so severely that his life was despaired of.

So eagerly did Jasper proffer his services, and with an alacrity so contrary to his usual sluggishness, when his own interests were not at stake, did he order his horse and gallop down to the village to visit his old friend, that his father smiled, well pleased and half laughingly thanked Theresa, when the boy had gone, saying that he really believed her gentle influence was charming some of Jasper’s willfulness away, and that he trusted ere long to see him, through her precept and example, converted into a milder and more humanized mood and temper.

Something swelled in the girl’s bosom, and rose to her throat, half choking her—the hysterica passio of poor Lear—as the good old man spoke, and the big tears gushed from her eyes.

It was by the mightiest effort only that she kept down the almost overmastering impulse which prompted her to cast herself down at the old man’s feet, and confess to him what she had done, and so implore his pardon and his blessing.

Had she done so, most happy it had been for her unhappy self; more happy yet for one more miserable yet, that should be!

Had she done so, she had crowned the old man’s last days with a halo of happiness that had lighted him down the steps to the dusky grave rejoicing—she had secured to herself, and to him whom she had taken for better or for worse, innocence and security and self-respect and virtue, which are happiness!

She did it not; and she repented not then—for when she told Jasper how nearly she had confessed all, his brow grew as dark as night, and he put her from him, exclaiming with an oath, that had she done so, he had never loved her more; but did she not repent thereafter?

It was late when Jasper returned, and he was, to all outward observers, sad and thoughtful; but Theresa could read something in his countenance, which told her that he had derived some secret satisfaction from his visit.

In a word, the danger, apprehension of which had so prompted Jasper’s charity, and quickened his zeal in well-doing—the danger, that the old clergyman should divulge in extremis the duty which had led him to the church at an hour so untimely, was at an end forever. He was dead, and had never spoken since the accident, which had proved fatal to his decrepit frame and broken constitution.

Moreover, to make all secure, he had seen the rascal sexton, and secured him forever, by promising him an annuity so long as the secret should be kept; while craftier and older in iniquity than he, and suspecting—might it not be foreseeing—deeper iniquity to follow, the villain, who now alone, with the suborned witnesses, knew what had passed, stole into the chancel, and cut out from the parish register the leaf which contained the record of that unhappy marriage.

It is marvellous how at times all things appear to work prosperously for the success of guilt, the destruction of innocence; but, of a truth, the end of these things is not here.

It so fell out that the record of Theresa Allan’s union with Jasper St. Aubyn was the first entry on a fresh leaf of the register. One skillful cut of a sharp knife removed that leaf, so as to defy the closest scrutiny; had one other name been inscribed thereon, before hers, she had been saved.

Alas! for Theresa!

But to do Jasper justice, he knew not of this villainy; nor, had he known, would he then have sanctioned it. He only wished to secure himself against momentary discovery.

The ill consequences of this folly, this mysterious and unmeaning craft, had now in some degree recoiled upon himself. And delighting, as he really did, in the closest intercourse with his sweet young bride, he chafed and fumed at finding that the necessity of keeping up the concealment, which he had so needlessly insisted on, precluded him from the possibility of enjoying his new possession, as he would, entirely and at all hours.

He would have given almost his right hand now to be able to declare openly that she was his own. But, for once in his life, he dared not! He could not bring himself to confess to his kind father the cruel breach of confidence, the foul and causeless deceit of which he had been guilty; and he began almost to look forward to the death of that excellent and idolizing parent, as the only event that could allow him to call his wife his own.

It was not long before his wish—if that can be called a wish, which he dared not confess to his own guilty heart, was accomplished.

The first snows had not fallen yet, when the old cavalier fell ill, and declined so rapidly that before the old year was dead he was gathered to his fathers. As he had lived, so he died, a just, upright, kindly, honorable man. At peace with all men, and in faith with his God.

His last words were entreaty to his son to take Theresa Allen to his wife, and to live with her unambitiously, unostentatiously, as he had lived himself, and was about to die, at Widecomb. And even then, though he promised to obey his father’s bidding, the boy’s heart was not softened, nor was his conscience touched by any sense of the wrong he had done. He promised, and as the good man’s dying eye kindled with pleasure, he smiled on him with an honest seeming smile, received his parting kiss, and closed his eyes, and stood beside the dead, unrelenting, unrepentant.

He was the Lord of Widecomb; and so soon as the corpse by which he stood should be composed in the quiet grave, the world should know him, too, as the Lord of Theresa Allan.

And so he swore to her, when he stole that night, as he had done nightly since their marriage, to her chamber, after every light was extinguished, and, as he believed, every eye closed in sleep; and she, fond soul! believed him, and clasped him to her heart, and sunk into sleep, with her head pillowed on his breast, happier than she had been since she had once—for the first, last time—deviated from the paths of truth.

But he who has once taken up deceit as his guide, knows not when he can quit it. He may, indeed, say to himself “thus far will I go, and no further,” but when he shall have once attained the proposed limit, and shall set himself to work to recover that straight path from which he has once deviated, fortunate will he be, indeed, if he find not a thousand obstacles, which it shall tax his utmost energy, his utmost ingenuity to surmount, if he have not to cry out in despair⁠—

Oh, what a tangled web we weave,

When first we practice to deceive.

Jasper St. Aubyn did honestly intend to do, the next day, what he that night promised; nor did he doubt that he could do it, and so do it, as to save her scatheless, of whom he had not yet grown weary.

But, alas! of so delicate a texture is a woman’s reputation, that the slightest doubt, the smallest shade once cast upon it, though false as hell itself, it shall require more than an angel’s tears to wash away the slain. All cautiously as Jasper had contrived his visits to the chamber of his wife, all guarded as had been his intercourse with her, although he had never dreamed that a suspicion had been awakened in a single mind of the existence of such an intercourse, he had not stolen thither once, nor returned once to his own solitary couch, but keen, curious, prying eyes had followed him.

There was not a maid-servant in the house but knew Miss Theresa’s shame, as all believed it to be; but tittered and triumphed over it in her sleeves, as an excuse, or at least a palliation of her own peccadilloes; but told it, in confidence, to her own lover, Tom, the groom, or Dick, the falconer, until it was the common gossip of the kitchen and the butlery, how the fair and innocent Theresa was Master Jasper’s mistress.

But they nothing dreamed of this; and both fell asleep that night, full of innocent hopes on the one hand, and good determinations—alas! never to be realized, on the other.

The morrow came, and Sir Miles St. Aubyn was consigned to the vault where slept his fathers of so many generations. Among the loud and sincere lamentations of his grateful tenantry and dependents, the silent, heartfelt tears of Theresa, and the pale but constrained sorrow of his son, he was committed earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust, to his long last home, by the son of the aged vicar, who had already been inducted to the living, which his father had held so many years before him.

The mournful ceremonial ended, Jasper was musing alone in the old library, considering with himself how he might best arrange the revelation, which he proposed to make that very evening to his household of his hitherto concealed marriage with Theresa, when suddenly a servant entered, and informed him that Peter Verity, the sexton, would be glad to speak six words with his honor, if it would not be too much trouble.

“By no means,” replied Jasper, eagerly, for he foresaw, as he thought, through this man a ready mode of extricating himself from the embarrassment of the disclosure, “admit him instantly.”

The fellow entered; a low, miserable, sneaking scoundrel, even from his appearance; and Jasper felt as if he almost loathed himself that he had ever had to do with so degraded a specimen of mortality. He had need of him, however, and was compelled, therefore, much against his will, to greet him, and speak to him fairly.

“Ha, Verity,” he said, “I am glad you have come, I should have sent for you in the morning, if you had not come up to-night. You have managed that affair for me right well; and I shall not forget it, I assure you. Here are ten guineas for you, as an earnest now, and I shall continue your annuity, though there will be no need for concealment any longer. Still I shall want your assistance, and will pay you for it liberally.”

“I thank your honor, kindly,” answered the fellow, pocketing the gold. “But with regard to the annuity, seeing as how what I’ve done for your honor is a pretty dangerous job, and one as I fancy might touch my life.”

“Touch your life! why what the devil does the fellow mean!” Jasper interrupted him, starting to his feet, “I never asked you—never asked any man—to do aught that should affect his life.”

“You never did ask me, right out in words, that is a fact, your honor. You was too deep for that, I’m a thinking! But, lord bless ye, I understood ye, for all, as well as if you had asked me. And so, be sure, I went and did it straight. I’d ha’ done any thing to serve your honor—that I would—and I will again, that’s more.”

“In God’s name, what have you done, then?” exclaimed Jasper, utterly bewildered.

“Why, seeing as your honor didn’t wish to have your marriage with Miss Theresa known, and as there wasn’t no way else of hiding it, when the old parson was dead and gone, and a new one coming, I went and cut the record of it out of the church-register, and I’ve got it here, safe enough. So if your honor fancies any time to get tired like of Miss, why you can e’en take another wife, and no one the wiser. There’s not a soul knows aught about it but me, and black Jem Alderly; and we’ll never say a word about it, not we. Nor it wouldn’t matter if we did, for that, when once you’ve got this here paper. And so I was thinking, if your honor would just give me five hundred guineas down, I’d hand it over, and you could just put it in the fire, if you choosed, and no one the wiser.”

Jasper cast his eyes up to heaven in despair, and wrung his hands bitterly.

“Great God!” he said, “I would give five thousand if you could undo this that you have done. I will give you five thousand if you will replace the leaf where it was, undiscovered.”

“It ain’t possible,” replied the man. “The new vicar he has looked over all the register, and made a copy of it; and he keeps it locked up, too, under his own key, so that, for my life, I could not get it, if I would. And I’d be found out, sure as God—and it’s hanging by the law! nothing less. But what does it signify, if I may be so bold, your honor?”

“When my poor father died, all cause of concealment was at an end; and I wished this very day to acknowledge my marriage with Mrs. St. Aubyn.”

The man uttered a low expressive whistle, as who should say, “Here is a change, with a vengeance!” But he dared not express what he thought, and answered humbly,

“Well, your honor, I don’t see how this alters it. You have nothing to do but to acknowledge madam as your wife, and there’s no one will think of asking when you were married, nor hasn’t no right to do so neither. And if they should, you can say the Doctor married you in his own parlor, and I can swear to that, your honor; if you want me, any time; and so’ll Jem Alderly; and this writing, that I’ll give you, will prove it any time, for it’s in the Doctor’s own hand-writing, and signed by the witnesses. So just you give me the five hundred, and I’ll give you the register; and you can do as you will with it, your honor. But if I was your honor, and you was Peter Verity, I’d just tell the servants, as Madam was my wife, and interduce her as Mistress St. Aubyn like; but I’d not say when nor where, nor nothing about it; and I’d just keep this here paper snug; as I could perduce it, if I wanted, or make away with it, if I wanted; it’s good to have two strings to your bow always.”

Jasper had listened to him in silence, with his eyes buried in his hands, while he was speaking, and as he ceased he made no reply; but remained motionless for several minutes.

Then he raised his head, and answered in an altered and broken voice.

“It cannot be helped now, but I would give very much it had been otherwise.” He opened a drawer, as he spoke, in the escritoir which stood before him, and took out of it a small box bound with brass and secured by a massive lock, the key of which was attached to a chain about his neck. It was filled with rouleux of gold, from which he counted out the sum specified, and pushed the gold across the table to the man, saying, “Count it, and see that it is right, and give me the paper.”

Then satisfying himself that it was the very register in question, he folded it carefully, and put it away in the box whence he had withdrawn the gold; while the villain, who had tempted him stowed away the price of his rascality in a leathern bag which he had brought with him for the purpose, well assured that his claim would not be denied.

That done, he stood erect and unblushing, and awaited the further orders of the young Lord of Widecomb.

“Now, Peter,” said he, collecting himself, “mark me. You are now in my power! and, if I ever hear that you have spoken a word without my permission, or if you fail to speak when I command you—I will hang you.”

And he spoke with a devilish energy, that showed how seriously he was in earnest. “Do you understand that, Master Peter Verity?”

“I do, your honor,” answered the man, with a doubtful and somewhat gloomy smile; “but there is no need of such threats with me; it is alike my interest and my wish to serve you, as I have done already.”

“And it is my interest and my wish that you should serve me, as differently as possible from the way in which you have served me; or served yourself, rather, I should say, sirrah.”

“I beg your honor’s pardon, if I have done wrong. I meant to do good service.”

“Tush, sirrah! tush! If I be young, I am neither quite a child, nor absolutely a fool. You meant to get me into your power, and you have got yourself into mine. Now listen to me, I know you for a very shrewd rascal, Peter Verity, and for one who knows right well what to say, and what not to say. Now, as I told you, I am about this very evening to make known my marriage with the lady whom you saw me wed. You will be asked, doubtless, a thousand questions on the subject by all sorts of persons. Now, mark me, you will answer so as to let all who ask understand that I am married, and that you have known all about it from the first; but you will do this in such a manner that no one shall be able to assert that you have asserted any thing; and further, that, if need should be hereafter, you may be able to deny point blank your having said aught, or known aught on the subject. I hope you will remember what I am desiring you to do correctly, Peter Verity; for, of a truth, if you make the slightest blunder, I shall carry this document, which you have stolen from the church-register, to the nearest justice of the peace, and make my deposition against you.”

“I understand perfectly, your honor, and will do your bidding correctly,” said the fellow, not a little embarrassed at finding how much his position had altered, since he entered the library, as he thought, well nigh the young heir’s master.

“So you shall do well,” replied Jasper. “Now get you gone. Let them give you some ale in the buttery, but when I send word to have the people collected in the great hall, make yourself scarce. It is not desirable that you should be there when I address them;” and lighting a hand-lamp as he ceased speaking, for it had grown dark already during the conversation, he turned his back on the discomfited sexton, and went up by a private staircase to what was called the ladies’ withdrawing room, an apartment which, having been shut up since the death of his own mother, had been reopened on Theresa’s joining the family.

“The sexton of the church has been with you, Jasper,” she said, eagerly, as her husband entered the room; “what should have brought him hither?”

“He was here, you know, dearest, at the sad ceremonial; and I had desired him to bring up a copy of the record of our marriage. He wished to deliver it to me in person.”

“How good of you, dear Jasper, and how thoughtful,” she replied, casting her fair white arms about his neck, and kissing his forehead tenderly, “that you may show it to the people, and prove to them that I am indeed your wife.”

Show it to the people! Prove that you are my wife!” he answered impetuously, and with indignation in his every tone. “I should like to see the person ask me to show it, or doubt that you are my wife. No, indeed, dear Theresa, your very thought shows how young you are, and ignorant of the world. To do what you suggest, would but create the doubt, not destroy it. No, when they have done supper, I shall cause the whole household to be collected in the great stone hall; and when they are there, I shall merely lead you in upon my arm, tell them we have been married in private these three months past, and desire them to respect you as my dear wife, and their honored mistress. That, and your being introduced to all friends and visiters as Mistress St. Aubyn, is all that can be needed; and, in cases such as ours, believe me, the less eclat given to the circumstances, the better it will be for all parties. And do not you, I pray you, dearest, suffer the servant girls to ask you any questions on the subject, or answer them if they do. But inform me of it forthwith.”

“They would not dream of doing so, Jasper,” she replied, gently. “And you are quite right, I am certain, and I will do all that you wish. Oh! I am so happy! so immeasurably happy, Jasper, even when I should be mournful at your good father’s death, who was so kind to me; but I cannot—I cannot—this joy completely overwhelms me. I am too, too happy.”

“Wherefore, so wondrous happy all on a sudden, sweet one?” asked the boy, with a playful smile, laying his hand, as he spoke, affectionately on her soft, rounded shoulder.

“That I need fear no longer to let the whole world know how dearly, how devotedly I love my husband.”

And she raised her beautiful blue eyes to his, running over with tears of tenderness and joy; and her sweet lips half apart, so perfumed and so rosy, and radiant with so bright a smile, as might have tempted the sternest anchorite to bend over her as Jasper did, and press them with a long kiss of pure affection.

“Now I will leave you, dearest,” he said, kindly, “for a little space, while I see that things are arranged for this great ceremonial. I will warn old Geoffry first of what I am about to say to them, that they may not overwhelm us by their wonder at the telling; and do you, when you hear the great bell ring to assemble them, put on your prettiest smile, and your most courageous look, for then I shall be on my way to fetch you.”

It was with a beating heart, and an almost sickening sense of anxiety, that poor Theresa awaited the moment which was to install her in the house of her husband as its lawful lady. She felt the awkwardness, the difficulty of her situation, although she was far indeed from suspecting all the causes which in reality existed to justify her embarrassment and timidity.

She had not long, however, to indulge in such fancies, and perhaps it was well that she had not; for her timidity seemed to grow on her apace, and she began to think that courage would fail her to undergo the ordeal of eyes to which she should be exposed.

But at this moment, when she was giving way to her bashfulness, when her terrors were gaining complete empire over her, the great bell began to ring. Slow and measured the first six or seven clanging strokes fell upon her, resembling more the minute-tolling of a death-bell, than the gay peal that gives note of festive tidings and rejoicing. But almost as soon as this thought occurred to her, it seemed that the ringer, whoever he was, had conceived the same idea, for the cadence of the bell-ringing was changed suddenly, and a quick, merry chime succeeded to the first solemn clangor.

At the same instant the door of the withdrawing-room was thrown open, and her young husband entered hastily, and catching her in his arms, kissed her lips affectionately. “Come, dearest girl,” he said, as he drew her arm through his own, “come, it will be all over in five minutes, and then every thing will go on as usual.”

And without waiting a reply, he led her down the great staircase into the stone hall, wherein all the servants of the household, and many of the tenantry and neighboring yeomen, who had not yet dispersed after the funeral, were assembled in a surprised and admiring although silent crowd.

The old steward, to whom Jasper had communicated his purpose, had already informed them of the object of their convocation, and great was their wonder, though as yet they had little time to comment on it, or communicate their thoughts and suspicions of the news.

And now they were all collected, quiet, indeed, and respectful—for such was the habit of the times—but all eagerness to hear what the young master had to say, and, to speak truly, little impressed by the informality of the affair, and little pleased that one whom they regarded as little higher than themselves, should be elevated to a rank and position so commanding.

Gathering even more than his wonted share of dignity from the solemnity of the moment, and bearing himself even more haughtily than his wont, from a sort of an inward consciousness that he was in some sort descending from his proper sphere, and lowering his wife by doing that which was yet necessary to establish her fair fame, the young man came down the broad oaken steps, with a slow, proud, firm step, his athletic though slender frame seeming to expand with the elevation of his excited feelings. He carried his fine head, with the brows a little bent, and his eyes, glancing like stars of fire, as they ran over every countenance that met his gaze, seeking, as it seemed, to find an expression which should challenge his will or underrate his choice.

She clung to his arm, not timidly, although it was evident that she felt the need of his protection, and, although there was an air of bashfulness and a slight tremor visible in her bearing, they were mixed with a sort of gentle pride, the pride of conscious rectitude and purity, and she did not cast down her beautiful blue eyes, nor avoid the glances which were cast on her from all sides, by some desiring to read her secret, by some wishing to prejudge her character, but looked around her tranquilly with a sweet lady-like self-possession, that won many hearts to her cause, which, before her coming, had been prepared to think of her unkindly.

Finding no eye in the circle that met his own with an inquisitive, much less an insolent glance, Jasper St. Aubyn paused, and addressed his people with a subdued and almost melancholy smile, although his voice was clear and sonorous.

“This is a sad occasion,” he said, “on which it first falls to my lot, my people, to address you here, as the master of a few, the landlord of many, and, as I hope to prove myself, the friend of all. To fill the place of him, who has gone from us, and whom you all knew so well, and had so much cause to love, I never can aspire; but it is my earnest hope and desire to live and die among you as he did; and if I fail to gain and hold fast your affections, as he did, it shall not be for want of endeavoring to deserve them. But my object in calling you together, my friends, this evening, was not merely to say this to you, or to promise you my friendship and protection, but rather to do a duty, which must not be deferred any longer, for my own sake, and for that of one far dearer than myself.” Here he paused, and pressing the little white hand which reposed on his arm so gently, smiled in the face of his young wife, as he moved her a little forward into the centre of the circle. “I mean, to present to you all, Mistress St. Aubyn, my beloved wife, and your honored mistress! Some of you have been aware of this for some time already; but to most of you it is doubtless a surprise. Be it so. Family reasons required that our marriage should be kept secret for a while, those reasons are now at an end, and I am as proud to acknowledge this dear lady as my wife, and to claim all your homage and affection for her, both on my account, and on account of her own virtues, as I doubt not you will be proud and happy to have so excellent and beautiful a lady to whom to look up as your mistress.”

He ceased, and three full rounds of cheering responded to his manly speech. The circle broke up, and crowded around the young pair, and many of the elder tenants, white-headed men and women, came up and craved permission to shake hands with the beautiful young lady, and blessed her with tears in their eyes, and wished her long life and happiness here and hereafter.

But among the servants of the household, there was not by any means the same feeling manifested. The old steward, indeed, who had grown up a contemporary of Jasper’s father, and the scarcely less aged housekeeper, did, indeed, show some feeling, and were probably sincere as they offered their greetings, and promised their humble services. But among the maid servants there passed many a meaning wink, and half light, half sneering titter; and two or three of the younger men nudged one another with their elbows, and interchanged thoughts with what they considered a vastly knowing grin. No remarks were made, however, nor did any intimation of doubt or distrust reach the eyes or ears of the young couple—all appeared to be truthful mirth and honest congratulation.

Then having ordered supper to be prepared for all present, and liquor to be served out, both ale and wine, of a better quality than usual, that the company might drink the health of their young mistress, well pleased that the embarrassing scene was at an end, Jasper led Theresa up to her own room, palpitating with the excitement of the scene, and agitated even by the excess of her own happiness.

But as the crowd was passing out of the hall into the dark passages which led to the buttery and kitchen, one of the girls of the house, a finely-shaped, buxom, red-lipped, hazel-eyed lass, with a very roguish if not sensual expression, hung back behind the other maids, till she was joined by the under falconer, a strapping fellow in a green jerkin with buckskin belt and leggins.

“Ha! Bess, is that you?” he said, passing his arm round her waist, “thou’rt a good lass, to tarry for me.”

And drawing her, nothing reluctant, aside from the crowd into a dark corner, he kissed her a dozen times in succession, a proceeding which she did not appear by any means to resent, the “ha’ done nows!” to the contrary notwithstanding, which she seemed to consider it necessary to deliver, and which her lover, probably correctly, understood as meaning, “pray go on, if you please.”

This pleasant interlude completed, “Well, Bess,” said the swain, “and what thinkst thou of the new mistress—of the young master’s wife? She’s a rare bit now, hant she?”

“Lor, Jem!” returned the girl, laughing, “she hant no more his wife than I be yourn, I tell you.”

“Why, what be she then, Bess?” said the fellow, gaping in stupid wonderment, “thou didst hear what Master Jasper said.”

“Why she be his sweetheart. Just what we be, Jem,” said the unblushing girl—“what the quality folks calls his ‘miss.’ Why, Jem, he’s slept in her room every night since she came here. He’s only said this here, about her being his wife, to save her character.”

“No blame to him for that, Bess, if it be so. But if you’re wise, lass, you’ll keep this to yourself. She’s a beauty, anyways; and I don’t fault him, if she be his wife, or his ‘miss,’ either, for that matter.”

“Lor!” replied the girl. “I shan’t go to say nothing, I’m sure. I’ve got a good place, and I mean to keep it too. It’s naught to me how they amuse themselves, so they don’t meddle with my sweet-hearting. But do you think her so pretty, Jem? She’s a poor slight little slip of a thing, seems to me.”

“She beant such an armful as thou, Bess, that’s a fact,” answered the fellow, making a dash at her, which she avoided, and took to her heels, looking back, however, over her shoulders, and beckoning him to follow.

Such were not the only comments of the kind which passed that evening; and although, fortunately for Jasper’s and Theresa’s peace of mind, they never dreamed of what was going on below, it was in fact generally understood among the younger men and women, both of those within and without the house, that Jasper’s declaration was a mere stratagem, resorted to in order to procure more respect and consideration for his concubine; and, although she was every where treated and addressed as St. Aubyn’s wife, every succeeding day and hour she was more generally regarded as his victim, and his mistress.

Such is the consequence of a single lapse from rectitude and truth.

Alas for Theresa! her doom, though she knew it not, was but too surely sealed forever.

Had it not been for the exceeding gentleness and humility of the unhappy girl, it is probable that she would have been very shortly made acquainted, one way or other, with the opinion which was entertained concerning her, in her own house, and in the neighborhood. But the winning affability of her manners, the total absence of all arrogance or self elevation in her demeanor toward her inferiors in station, her respect every where manifested to old age and virtue, her kindness to the poor and the sick, her considerate good-nature to her servants, and above all her liberal and unostentatious charities, rendered it impossible that any could be so cruel as to offer her rudeness or indignity, on what was at most mere suspicion. Added to this, the fierce impetuosity of Jasper, when crossed by any thing, or opposed in his will, and the certainty that he would stop at nothing to avenge any affront aimed at Theresa, so long as he chose to style her his wife, deterred not only the household and village gossips, but even that more odious class, the hypocritical, puritanic, self-constituted judges of society, and punishers of what they choose to deem immorality, from following out the bent of their mischievous or malicious tempers.

In the meantime, month after month had passed away. Winter had melted into the promises of spring; and the gay flowers of summer had ripened into the fruits of luxuriant autumn. A full year had run its magic round since Theresa gave herself up to Jasper, for better for worse, till death should them part.

The slender, joyous maiden had expanded into the full-blown, thoughtful, lovely woman, who was now watching at the oriel window, alone, at sunset for the return of her young husband.

Alone, ay, alone! For no child had been born to bless their union, and to draw yet closer the indissoluble bonds which man may not put asunder. Alone, ay, alone! as all her days were now spent, and some, alas! of her nights also. For the first months of her wedded life, when the pain of concealment had been once removed, Theresa was the happiest of the happy. The love, the passion, the affection of her boy bridegroom seemed to increase daily. To sit by her side, during the snowy days of winter, to listen to her lute struck by the master hand of the untaught improvisatrice, to sing with her the grand old ballads which she loved, to muse with her over the tomes of romance, the natural vein of which was not then extinguished in the English heart, to cull the gems of the rare dramatists and mighty bards of the era, which was then but expiring; and, when the early days of spring-time gave token of their coming, in the swelling flower-bud and bursting leaf, to wander with her through the park, through the chase, to ride with her over the heathery moorland hills, and explore the wild recesses of the forest, to have her near him in his field-sports, to show her how he struck the silvery salmon, or roused the otter from his sedgy lair—these seemed to be the only joys the boy coveted—her company his chiefest pleasure, the undisturbed possession of her charms his crowning bliss.

But passion is proverbially short-lived; and the most so with those who, like Jasper, have no solidity of character, no stability of feeling, no fixed principles, whereon to fall back for support. One of the great defects of Jasper’s nature was a total lack of reverence for any thing divine or human—he had loved many things, he never had respected one. Accustomed from his earliest boyhood to see every thing yield to his will, to measure the value of every thing by the present pleasure it afforded him; he expected to receive all things, yet to give nothing. He was in fact a very pattern of pure selfishness, though no one would have been so much amazed as he had he heard himself so named.

Time passed, and he grew weary, even of the very excess of his happiness—even of the amiability, the sweetness, the ever-yielding gentleness of his Theresa. That she should so long have charmed one so rash and reckless was the real wonder, not that she should now have lost the power of charming him.

Nevertheless so it was; the mind of Jasper was not so constituted as to rest very long content with any thing, least of all with tranquillity⁠—

For quiet to hot bosoms is a hell!

and his, surely, was of the hottest. He began as of old to long for excitement; and even the pleasures of the chase, to which he was still devoted, began to prove insufficient to gratify his wild and eager spirit. Day after day, Theresa saw less of him, and ere long knew not how or where many of his days were spent. Confidence, in the true sense of the word, there never had been between them; respect or esteem, founded upon her real virtues and rare excellences, he had never felt—therefore, when the heat and fierceness of passion died out, as it were, by the consumption of its own fuel, when her personal charms palled on him by possession, when her intellectual endowments wearied him, because they were in truth far beyond the range of his comprehension, and therefore out of the pale of his sympathies, he had nothing left whereon to build affection—thus passion once dead in his heart, all was gone at once which had bound him to Theresa.

He neglected her, he left her alone—alone, without a companion, a friend, in the wide world. Still she complained not, wept not, above all, upbraided not. She sought to occupy herself, to amuse her solitude with her books, her music, her wild flights into the world of fancy. And when he did come home from his fierce, frantic gallops across the country with the worst and wildest of the young yeomanry, from his disgraceful orgies with the half gentry of the nearest market-town, she received him ever with kindness, gentleness and love.

She never let him know that she wept in silence; never allowed him to see that she noticed his altered manner; but smiled on him, and sang to him, and fondled him, as if he had been to her—and was he not so?—all that she had on earth. And he, such is the spirit of the selfish and the reckless of our sex, almost began to hate her, for the very meekness and affection with which she submitted to his unkindness.

He felt that her unchanged, unreproaching love was the keenest reproach to his altered manner, to his neglectful coldness. He felt that he could better have endured the bitterest blame, the most agonized remonstrance, the tears of the veriest Niobe, than meet the ever welcoming smile of those rosy lips, the ever loving glance of those soft blue eyes.

Perhaps had she possessed more of what such men as he call spirit, had the vein of her genius led to outbursts of vehement, unfeminine, Italian passion, the flashing eye, the curling lip, the face pallid with rage, the tongue fluent with the torrent eloquence of indignation, he might have found in them something to rouse his dormant passions from the lethargy which had overcome them, something to stimulate and excite him into renewed desire.

But as well might you expect from the lily of the valley the blushes and the thorns of the rose, from the turtle-dove the fury and the flight of the jer-falcon, as aught from Theresa St. Aubyn, but the patience, the purity, the quiet, and the love of a white-minded, virtuous woman.

But she was wretched—most wretched—because hopeless. She had prayed for a child, with all the yearning eagerness of disappointed craving womanhood—a child that should smile in her face, and love her for herself, being of herself, and her own—a child that should perhaps win back to her the lost affections of her lord. But in vain.

And still she loved him, nay, adored him, as of old. Never did she see his stately form, sitting his horse with habitual grace, approaching listlessly and slowly the home which no longer had a single attraction to his jaded and exhausted heart, but her whole frame was shaken by a sharp nervous tremor, but a mist overspread her swimming eyes, but dull ringing filled her ears, her heart throbbed and palpitated, until she thought it would burst forth from her bosom.

She ever hoped that the cold spell might pass from him, ever believed, ever trusted, that the time would come when he would again love her as of old, again seek her society, and take pleasure in her conversation; again let her nestle in his bosom, and look up into his answering eyes, by the quiet fireside in winter evenings. Alas! she still dreamed of these things—even although her reason told her that they were hopeless—even after he had again changed his mood from sullen coldness to harsh, irritable anger, to vehement, impetuous, fiery wrath, causeless as the wolf’s against the lamb, and therefore the more deadly and unsparing.

Politics had run high in the land of late, and every where parties were forming. Since the battle of Sedgemoor, and the merciless cruelty with which the royal judges had crushed out the life of that abortive insurrection, and drowned its ashes in floods of innocent gore, the rage of factions had waxed wilder in the country than they had done since the reign of the first Charles, the second English king of that unhappy race, the last of whom now filled the painful seat of royalty.

Yet all was hushed as yet and quiet, as the calm which precedes the bursting of a thunder-cloud. Secluded as Widecomb Manor was, and far divided from the seats of the other gentry of Devonshire by tracts of moor and forest, and little intercourse as Jasper had held hitherto with his equals in rank and birth—limited as that intercourse had been to a few visits of form, and a few annual banquets—the stir of the political world reached even the remote House in the Woods.

The mad whirl of politics was precisely the thing to captivate a mind such as Jasper’s; and the instant the subject was broached to him, by some of the more leading youths of the county, he plunged headlong into its deepest vortices, and was soon steeped to the lips in conspiracy.

Events rendered it necessary that he should visit the metropolis, and twice during the autumn he had already visited it—alone. And twice he had returned to his beautiful young wife, who hailed his coming as a heathen priestess would have greeted the advent of her god, more alienated, colder, and more causeless than before.

Since he had last returned, the coldness was converted into cruelty, active, malicious, fiendish cruelty. Hard words, incessant taunts, curses—nay, blows! Yet still, faithful to the end and fond, she still loved him. Still would have laid down the dregs of the life which had been so happy till she knew him, and which he had made so wretched, to win one of his old fond smiles, one of his once caressing tones, one of his heartfelt kisses.

Alas! alas! Theresa! Too late, it was all too late!

He had learned, for the first time, in London, the value of his rank, his wealth, his position. He had been flattered by men of lordly birth, fêted and fondled by the fairest and noblest ladies of the land. He had learned to be ambitious—he had begun to thirst for social eminence, for political ascendency, for place, power, dominion. His talents had created a favorable impression in high quarters—his enthusiasm and daring rashness had made an effect—he was already a marked man among the conspirators, who were aiming to pull down the sovereignty of the Stuarts. Hints had been even thrown out to him, of the possibility of allying himself to interests the most important, through the beautiful and gorgeous daughter of one of the oldest of the peers of England. The hint had been thrown out, moreover, by a young gentleman of his own county—by one who had seen Theresa. And when he started and expressed his wonder, and alluded tremulously to his wife, he had been answered by a smile of intelligence, coupled with an assurance that every one understood all about Theresa Allan; and that surely he would not be such a fool as to sacrifice such prospects for a little village paramour. “The story of the concealed wedding took in nobody, my lad,” the speaker added, “except those, like myself, who chose to believe any thing you chose to assert. Think of it, mon cher; and, believe me, that liaison will be no hindrance.”

And Jasper had thought of it. The thought had never been, for one moment, absent from his mind, sleeping or waking, since it first found admission to the busy chambers of his brain. From that unfortunate day, his life had been but one series of plots and schemes, all base, atrocious, horrible—some even murderous.

Since that day his cruelty had not been casual; it had a meaning, and a method, both worthy of the arch fiend’s devising.

He sought first deliberately to break her heart, to kill her without violence, by the action of her own outraged affections—and then, when that failed, or rather when he saw that the process must needs be too slow to meet his accursed views, he aimed at driving her to commit suicide—thus slaying, should he succeed in his hellish scheme, body and soul together of the woman whom he had sworn before God’s holy altar, with the most solemn adjuration, to love, comfort, honor, and keep in sickness and in health—the woman whose whole heart and soul were his absolute possession; who had never formed a wish, or entertained a thought, but to love him and to make him happy. And this—this was her reward. Could she, indeed, have fully conceived the extent of the feelings which he now entertained toward her, could she have believed that he really was desirous of her death, was actually plotting how he might bring it about, without dipping his hand in her blood, or calling down the guilt of downright murder on his soul, I believe he would have been spared all further wickedness.

To have known that he felt toward her not merely casual irritation, that his conduct was not the effect of a bad disposition, or of an evil temper only, but that determined hatred had supplanted the last spark of love in his soul, and that he was possessed by a resolution to rid himself of the restraint which his marriage had brought upon him, by one means or another—to have known this, I say, would have so frozen her young blood, would have so stricken her to the heart, that, if it had not slain her outright, it would have left her surely—perhaps happier even to be such—a maniac for the poor remnant of her life.

That morning, at an early hour, he had ridden forth, with two or three dogs at his heel, and the game-keeper, James Alderly, better known in that neighborhood as Black Jem, who had of late been his constant companion, following him.

Dinner-time had passed—supper-time—yet he came not; and the deserted creature was yet watching wistfully, hopefully for his return.

Suddenly, far off among the stems of the distant trees, she caught a glimpse of a moving object; it approached; it grew more distinct—it was he, returning at a gallop, as he seldom now returned to his distasteful home, with his dogs careering merrily along by his side, and the grim-visaged keeper spurring in vain to keep up with the furious speed at which he rode, far in the rear of his master.

She pressed her hand upon her heart, and drew a long, deep breath. “Once more,” she murmured to herself, “he hath come back to me once more!”

And then the hope flashed upon her mind that the changed pace at which he rode, and something which even at that distance she could descry in his air and mien, might indicate an alteration in his feelings. “Yes, yes! Great God! can it be? He sees me, he waves his hand to me. He loves—he loves me once again!”

And with a mighty effort she choked down the paroxysm of joy, which had almost burst out in a flood of tears, and hurried from the room, and out upon the terrace, to meet him, to receive once more a smile of greeting. His dogs came bounding up to her, as she stood at the top of the stone steps, and fawned upon her, for they loved her—every thing loved her, save he only who had most cause to do so.

Yet now, it was true, he did smile upon her, as he dismounted from his horse, and called her once more “Dear Theresa.” And he passed his arm about her slender waist, and led her back into the house, chiding her good-humoredly for exposing herself to the chilly night-wind.

“I feel it not,” she said, joyously, with her own sunny smile lighting up her face, “I feel it not—nor should feel it, were it charged with all the snow storms of the north; my heart is so warm, so full. Oh! Jasper, that dear name, in your own voice, has made me but too happy.”

“Silly child!” he replied, “silly child,” patting her affectionately on the shoulder, as he had used to do in times long past—at least it seemed long, very long to her, though they were in truth but a few months distant. “And do you love me, Theresa?”

“Love you?” she said, gazing up into his eyes with more of wonder that he should ask such a question, than of any other feeling. “Love you, oh, God! can you doubt it, Jasper?”

“No,” he said, hesitating slightly, “no, dearest. And yet I have given you but little cause of late to love me.”

“Do you know that—do you feel that, Jasper?” she cried, eagerly, joyously, “then I am, indeed, happy; then you really do love me?”

“And can you forgive me, Theresa?”

“Forgive you—for what?”

“For the pain I have caused you of late.”

“It is all gone—it is all forgotten! You have been vexed, grieved about something that has wrung you in secret. But you should have told me of it, dearest Jasper, and I would have consoled you. But it is all, all over now; nay, but I am now glad of it, since this great joy is all the sweeter for the past sorrow.”

“And do you love me well enough, Theresa, to make a sacrifice, a great sacrifice for me?”

“To sacrifice my heart’s blood—ay, my life, if to do so would make you happy.”

“Your life, silly wench! how should your little life profit me? But that is the way ever with you women. If one ask you the smallest trifle, you ever proffer your lives, as if they could be of any use, or as if one would not be hanged for taking them. I have known girls refuse one kiss, and then make a tender of their lives.”

He spoke with something of his late habitual bitterness, it is true; but there was a smile on his face, as he uttered the words, and she laughed merrily, as she answered,

“Oh! I will not refuse you fifty of those; I will be only too glad if you think them worth the taking. But I did speak foolishly, dearest; and you must not blame me for it, for my heart is so overflowing with joy, that, of a truths I scarcely know what I say. I only wished to express that there is nothing in the wide world which you can ask of me, that I will not do, willingly, gladly. Will that satisfy you, Jasper?”

“Why, ay! if you hold to it, Theresa,” he answered, eagerly; “but, mind you, it is really a sacrifice which I ask—a great sacrifice.”

“No sacrifice is great,” she replied, pressing his arm, on which she was hanging with both her white hands linked together over it, “no sacrifice which I can make, so long as you love me.”

“I do love you, dearly, girl,” he answered; “and if you do this that I would have you do, I will love you ten times better than I do, ten times better than I ever did.”

“That were a bribe indeed,” she replied, laughing with her own silvery, girlish laugh. “But I don’t believe you could love me ten times better than you once did, Jasper. But if you will promise me to love me ever as you did then, you may ask me any thing under heaven.”

“Well, I will promise—I will promise, wench. See that you be as ready to perform.”

And, as he spoke, he stooped down, for the keeper had now retired with the horses, and they were entirely alone, and embraced her closely, and kissed her as he had not done for many a month before.

“I will—I will, indeed, dear, dearest Jasper. Tell me, what is it I must do?”

“Go to your room, dearest, and I will join you there and tell you. I must get me a crust of bread and a goblet of wine, and give some directions to the men, and then I will join you.”

“Do not be very long, dearest. I am dying to know what I can do to please you.” And she stood upon tiptoes, and kissed his brow playfully, and then ran up stairs with a lighter step than had borne her for many a day.

Her husband gazed after her with a grim smile, and nodded his head in self-approbation. “This is the better way, after all. But will she, will she stand to it? I should not be surprised. ’S death! one can never learn these women! What d—d fools they are, when all is told! Flattery, flattery and falsehood, lay it on thick enough, will win the best of them from heaven to—Hades!”

Oh, man, man! and all that was but acting.

[Conclusion in our next.





Vainly, vainly, memory seeks

  Round our father’s knee,

Laughing eyes and rosy cheeks

  Where they used to be:

Of the circle once so wide,

Three are wanderers, three have died.


Golden-haired and dewy-eyed,

  Prattling all the day,

Was the baby, first that died;

  O ’twas hard to lay

Dimpled hand and cheek of snow

In the grave so dark and low!


Smiling back on all who smiled,

  Ne’er by sorrow thralled,

Half a woman, half a child,

  Was the next God called:

Then a grave more deep and wide

Made they by the baby’s side.


When or where the other died

  Only heaven can tell;

Treading manhood’s path of pride

  Was he when he fell:

Haply thistles, blue and red,

Bloom about his lonesome bed.


I am for the living three

  Only left to pray;

Two are on the stormy sea.

  Farther still than they,

Wanders one, his young heart dim,

Oftenest, most, I pray for him.


Whatsoe’er they do or dare,

  Wheresoe’er they roam,

Have them, Father, in thy care,

  Guide them safely home;

Home, O Father, in the sky,

Where none wander and none die.





“A friend!” Are you a friend? No, by my soul!

Since you dare breathe the shadow of a doubt

That I am true as Truth: since you give not

Unto my briefest look—my gayest word⁠—

My faintest change of cheek—my softest touch⁠—

Most sportive, careless smile, or low-breathed sigh⁠—

Nay, to my voice’s lightest modulation,

Though imperceptible to all but you,⁠—

If you give not to these, unquestioning,

A limitless faith—the faith you give to Heaven⁠—

I will not call you “friend.” I would disdain

A seraph’s heart, as yours I now renounce,

If such the terms on which ’twere proffered me.

  Deny me Faith—that poor, yet priceless boon⁠—

And you deny the very soul of love.

As well withhold the lamp, whose light reveals

The sculptured beauty latent in its urn,

As proffer Friendship’s diamond in the dark.

  What though a thousand seeming proofs condemn me?

If my calm image smile not clear through all,

Serene, and without shadow on your heart⁠—

Nay, if the very vapors that would veil it,

Part not, illumined by its presence pure,

As round Night’s tranquil queen the clouds divide,

Then rend it from that heart! I ask no place,

Though ’twere a throne, without the state becomes me⁠—

Without the homage due to royal Truth.

  And should a world betide pronounce me false,

You are to choose between the world and me.

If I be not more than all worlds to you,

I will not stoop to less! I will have all⁠—

Your proudest, purest, noblest, loftiest love⁠—

Your perfect trust—your soul of soul—or nothing!

  Shall I not have them? Speak! on poorer spirits⁠—

Who are content with less, because, forsooth,

The whole would blind or blight them, or because

They have but less to give—will you divide

The glory of your own? or concentrate

On mine its radiant life?—on mine! that holds

As yet, in calm reserve, the boundless wealth

Of tenderness its Maker taught to it.

Speak! shall we part, and go our separate ways,

Each with a half life in a burning soul,

Like two wild clouds, whose meeting would evoke

The electric flame pent up within their bosoms,

That, parted, weep their fiery hearts away,

Or waste afar—and darken into death?

Speak! do we part? or are we one forever?


  Since I must love thee—since a weird wild fate

Impels me to thy heart against my will⁠—

Do thou this justice to the heart I yield:

Be its ideal. Let it not blush to love.

Bid it not trail its light and glorious wings

Through the dull dust of earth, with downcast eyes

And drooping brow, where Shame and Grief usurp

Calm Honor’s throne!—be noble, truthful, brave;

Love Honor more than Love, and more than me;

Be all thou wert ere the world came between

Thee and thy God.

                  Hear’st thou my spirit pleading

With suppliant, claspéd hands to thine, dear love?

Degrade her not, but let thy stronger soul

Soar with her to the seraph’s realm of light.

She yields to thee; do with her as thou wilt.

She shuts her wings in utter weariness,

For she has wandered all night long astray,

And found no rest—no fountain of sweet love,

Save such as mocked her with a maddening thirst.

She asks of thine repose, protection, peace;

Implores thee with wild tears and passionate prayers

To give her shelter through the night of Time,

And lead her home at morn; for long ago

She lost her way.

                  Ah! thou may’st give, instead

Of that sweet boon she asks, if so thou wilt,

Wild suffering, madness, shame, self-scorn, despair!

But thou wilt not! thine eyes—thy glorious eyes⁠—

Are eloquent with generous love and faith,

And through thy voice a mighty heart intones

Its rich vibrations, while thou murmurest low

All lovely promises, and precious dreams

For the sweet Future. So, I trust thee, love,

And place my hand in thine, for good or ill.


  Do not my soul that wrong! translate not thus

The spirit-words my eyes are saying to thee:

I would not fetter that rich heart of thine,

Save by the perfect liberty I give it,

For all God’s worlds of glory. Go thou forth⁠—

Be free as air! Love all the good and pure;

Cherish all love that can ennoble thee;

Unfold thy soul to all sweet ministries,

That it may grow toward heaven, as a flower

Drinks dew and light, and pays them back in beauty.

And if—ah heaven! these tears are love’s, not grief’s⁠—

And if some higher ministry than mine,

Or some more genial nature, bless thee more,

Wrong not thyself, or me, or love, or truth,

By shrinking weakly from thy destiny.

I would not owe to pitying tenderness

The joy with which thy presence lights my life.

Thou shalt still love all that is thine, dear friend,

In my true soul—all that is right and great;

And that I still love thee, so proudly, purely⁠—

That shall be joy enough! Go calmly forth.


  Would I were any thing that thou dost love⁠—

A flower, a shell, a wavelet, or a cloud⁠—

Aught that might win a moment’s soul-look from thee.

To be “a joy forever” in thy heart,

That were in truth divinest joy to mine:

A low, sweet, haunting Tune, that will not let

Thy memory go, but fondly twines around it,

Pleading and beautiful—for unto thee

Music is life—such life as I would be;

A Statue, wrought in marble, without stain,

Where one immortal truth embodied lives

Instinct with grace and loveliness; a Fane,

A fair Ionic temple, growing up,

Light as a lily into the blue air,

To the glad melody of a tuneful thought

In its creator’s spirit, where thy gaze

Might never weary—dedicate to thee,

Thy image shrined within it, lone and loved;

Make me the Flower thou lovest; let me drink

Thy rays, and give them back in bloom and beauty;

Mould me to grace, to glory, like the Statue;

Wake for my mind the Music of thine own,

And it shall grow, to that majestic tune,

A temple meet to shrine mine idol in;

Hold the frail shell, tinted by love’s pure blush,

Unto thy soul, and thou shalt hear within

Tones from its spirit-home; smile on the wave,

And it shall flow, free, limpid, glad, forever;

Shed on the cloud the splendor of thy being,

And it shall float—a radiant wonder—by thee!

  To love—thy love—so docile I would be,

So pliant, yet inspired, that it should make

A marvel of me, for thy sake, and show

Its proud chef d’œuvre in my harmonious life.


  I would be judged by that great heart of thine,

Wherein a voice more genuine, more divine

Than world-taught Reason, fondly speaks for me,

And bids thee love and trust, through cloud and shine,

The frail and fragile creature who would be

Naught here—hereafter—if not all to thee!

Thou call’st me changeful as the summer cloud,

And wayward as a wave, and light as air.

And I am all thou sayest—all, and worse;

But the wild cloud can weep, as well as lighten,

And the wave mirrors heaven, as my soul thee;

And the light air, that frolicks without thought

O’er yonder harp, makes music as it goes.

Let me play on the soul-harp I love best,

And teach it all its dreaming melody;

That is my mission; I have nothing else,

In all the world, to do. And I shall go

Musicless, aimless, idle, through all life,

Unless I play my part there—only there.

  In the full anthem which the universe

Intones to heaven, my heart will have no share,

Unless I have that soul-harp to myself,

And wake it to what melody I please.


  So wrote the Lady Imogen—the child

Of Poetry and Passion—all her frame

So lightly, exquisitely shaped, we dreamed

’Twas fashioned to the echo of some song⁠—

The fairest, airiest creature ever made⁠—

Flower-like in her fragility and grace,

Childlike in sweet impetuous tenderness,

Yet with a nature proud, profound, and pure,

As a rapt sybil’s. O’er her soul had passed

The wild simoom of wo, but to awake

From that Eolian lyre the loveliest tones

Of mournful music, passionately sad.

  Not thus her love the haughty Ida breathed:

In her ideal beauty calm and high,

O’er the patrician paleness of her cheek,

Came, seldom, and how softly! the faint blush

Of irrepressible tenderness.


  Your course has been a conqueror’s through life;

You have been followed, flattered and caressed;

Soul after soul has laid upon your shrine

Its first, fresh, dewy bloom of love for incense:

The minstrel-girl has tuned for you her lute,

And set her life to music for your sake;

The opera-belle, with blush unwonted, starts

At your name’s casual mention, and forgets,

For one strange moment, fashion’s cold repose;

The village maiden’s conscious heart beats time

To your entrancing melody of verse,

And, from that hour, of your belovéd image

Makes a life-idol. And you know it all,

And smile, half-pleased, and half in scorn, to know.

  But you have never known, nor shall you now,

Who, ’mid the throng you sometimes meet, receives

Your careless recognition with a thrill,

At her adoring heart, worth all that homage!

  You see not, ’neath her half-disdainful smile,

The passionate tears it is put on to hide;

You dream not what a wild sigh dies away

In her laugh’s joyous trill; you cannot guess⁠—

You, who see only with your outer sense,⁠—

A warped, chilled sense, that wrongs you every hour⁠—

You cannot guess, when her cold hand you take,

That a soul trembles in that light, calm clasp!

  You speak to her, with your world tone; ah, not

With the home cadence of confiding love!

And she replies: a few, low, formal words

Are all she dares, nay deigns, return; and so

You part, for months, again. Yet in that brief,

Oasis hour of her desert life,

She has quaffed eagerly the enchanted spring,

The sun-lit wave of thought in your rich mind;

And passes on her weary pilgrimage

Refreshed, and with a renovated strength.

  And this has been for years. She was a child⁠—

A school-girl—when the echo of your lyre

First came to her, with music on its wings,

And her soul drank from it the life of life.

  Then, in a festive scene, you claimed her hand

For the gay dance, and, in its intervals,

Spoke soothingly and gently, for you saw

Her timid blush, but did not dream its cause.

Even then her young heart worshiped you, and shrunk,

With a vague sense of fear and shame, away.

  She who, with others, was, and is, even now,

Light, fearless, joyous, buoyant as a bird,

That lets the air-swung spray beneath it bend,

Nor cares, so it may carol, what shall chance,

With you, forgets her song, foregoes her mirth,

And hushes all her music in her heart.

It is because your soul, that should know hers

With an intuitive tenderness, is blind!

  But once again you met; then, years went by,

And in a thronged, luxurious saloon,

You drew her fluttering hand within your arm;

A few blest moments next your heart it lay;

And still the lady mutely veiled, from yours,

Eyes where her glorious secret wildly shone;

And you, a-weary of her seeming dullness,

Grew colder day by day. But once you paused

Beside her seat, and murmured words of praise.

Praise from your lips! My God! the ecstasy

Of that dear moment! Each bright word, embalmed

In Memory’s tears of amber, gleams there yet⁠—

The costliest beads in her rich rosary.

  But you were blind! And after that a cloud,

Colder and darker, hung between her heart

And yours. There were malicious, lovely lips,

That knew too well the poison of a hint,

And it worked deep and sure. And years, again,

Stole by, and now once more we meet. We meet? ah, no;

We ne’er have met! Hand may touch hand, perchance,

And eye glance back to eye its idle smile;

But our souls meet not: for, from boyhood, you

Have been a mad idolater of beauty.

And I! ah, Heaven! had you returned my love,

I had been beautiful in your dear eyes;

For love and joy and hope within the spirit

Make luminous the face. But let that pass:

I murmur not. In my soul Pride is crowned

And throned—a queen; and at her feet lies Love,

Her slave—in chains—that you shall ne’er unclasp.

  Yet, oh! if aspirations, ever rising,

With an intense idolatry of love,

Toward all of grace and parity and truth

That we may dream, can shape the soul to beauty,

(As I believe,) then, in that better world,

You will not ask if I were fair on earth.

  You have loved often—passionately, perchance⁠—

Never with that wild, rapturous, poet-love

Which I might win—and will. Not here on earth:

I would not have the ignoble, trivial cares

Of common life come o’er our glorious union,

To mar its spirit-beauty. In His home

We shall meet calmly, gracefully, without

Alloy of petty ills. . . . . .

  Meantime, I read you, as no other reads;

I read your soul—its burning, baffled hopes;

Its proud, pure aims, whose wings are melted off

In the warm sunshine of the world’s applause;

Its yearning for an angel’s tenderness:

I read it all, and grieve, and sometimes blush,

That you can desecrate so grand a shrine

By the false gods you place there! you, who know

The lore of love so perfectly, who trace

The delicate labyrinth of a woman’s heart,

With a sure clew, so true, so fine, so rare,

Some angel Ariadne gave it you!

  If I knew how to stoop, I’d tell you more:

I’d win your love, even now, by a slight word;

But that I’ll say in heaven. Till we meet there,

Unto God’s love I leave you. . . . .

You will glance round among the crowd hereafter,

And dream my woman’s heart must sure betray me.

Not so: I have not schooled, for weary years,

Eye, lip, and cheek, and voice, to be shamed now

By your bold gaze. Ah! were I not secure

In my pride’s sanctuary, this revelation

Were an act, Heaven, nor you, could ever pardon;

And still less I. Nor would I now forego,

Even for your love, the deep, divine delight

Of this most pure and unsuspected passion,

That none have guessed, or will, while I have life.

You smile, perchance. Beware! I shall shame you,

If with suspicion’s plummet you dare sound

The unfathomed deeps of feeling in this heart.

It shall bring up, ’stead of that love it seeks,

A scorn you look not for. Ay, I would die

A martyr’s death, sir, rather than betray

To you by faintest flatter of a pulse⁠—

By lightest change of cheek or eyelid’s fall⁠—

That I am she who loves, adores, and flies you!

      .     .     .     .     .     .     .     .     .

  Ask why the holy starlight, or the blush

Of summer blossoms, or the balm that floats

From yonder lily like an angel’s breath,

Is lavished on such men! God gives them all

For some high end; and thus, the seeming waste

Of her rich soul—its starlight purity,

Its every feeling delicate as a flower,

Its tender trust, its generous confidence,

Its wondering disdain of littleness⁠—

These, by the coarser sense of those around her

Uncomprehended, may not all be vain,

But win them—they unwitting of the spell⁠—

By ties unfelt, to nobler, loftier life.

  And they dare blame her! they whose every thought,

Look, utterance, act, has more of evil in ’t,

Than e’er she dreamed of, or could understand!

And she must blush before them, with a heart

Whose lightest throb is worth their all of life!⁠—

They boast their charity: oh, idle boast!

They give the poor, forsooth, food, fuel, shelter!

Faint, chilled and worn, her soul implored a pittance⁠—

Her soul asked alms of theirs—and was denied!

  It was not much it came a-begging for:

A simple boon, only a gentle thought,

A kindly judgment of such deeds of hers

As passed their understanding, but to her

Seemed natural as the blooming of a flower:

For God taught her—but they had learned of men

The meagre doling of their measured love,

A selfish, sensual love, most unlike hers.

God taught the tendril where to cling, and she

Learned the same lovely lesson, with the same

Unquestioning and pliant trust in Him.

  And yet that He should let a lyre of heaven

Be played on by such hands, with touch so rude,

Might wake a doubt in less than perfect faith,

Perfect as mine, in his beneficence.





Till the last mortal pang is o’er,

  Aid me, my human friend,

Let thy sweet ministries of love

  Support me to the end!


In such a fearful hour my soul

  Unaided cannot stand,

Leave me not till my Saviour comes

  To take my trembling hand.


My heart is weak, is earthly still,

  And though such love be crime,

I cannot yield thee till my feet

  Have passed the shores of time.


Gently, O, gently lead me on,

  Soothe me with love’s fond tone—

Thou hast been near through all the past

  How shall I go alone?


The last my lips shall ever drink

  Is life’s most bitter cup—

Nearer the wave of death hath rolled,

  How can I give thee up?


Closer, O, closer! let me feel

  Thy heart still fondly beat,

While the cold billows of the grave

  Are closing round my feet!







What droll scenes hobgoblins and sprites catch a peep at, in their perambulations through this ludicrous world of ours!

Now we, poor mortals, rarely stumble upon any thing funny, because, forsooth, we must ring the bell, or knock at the door, and then people throw themselves into proper positions and put on their company faces, and the farce is at an end. No human being, for instance, could have walked, unannounced, into Miss Ariana Huntingdon’s boudoir, on that morning when Mr. Atherton Burney was kneeling at her feet, but the merry sprites gathered around, and it is a wonder that he did not hear them shout:


“Ha! ha! the wooing o’t.”


Mr. Burney’s courtship was by no means a premeditated affair. Who ever thinks exactly how he shall tell pleasant news? Such, that gentleman thought, would be the intelligence of his most honorable preference. And now that Miss Ariana looked coldly on his suit, he was lost in wonder at the blindness to her own interest which she exhibited. Like most men, he never dreamed that a refusal could arise from personal dislike, and while wounded pride turned his attempt at a pathetic face into a wry one, he desired to know the motives which had induced so uncomplimentary a decision.

Miss Ariana’s face wore the expression of Sir Joshua Reynold’s “Mucipula,” excepting that it said, “I have caught a man!” instead of “a mouse;” but she remembered that a respectable offer must be respectfully treated, and covering the smile lurking around her mouth with one of her plump little hands, she looked as gravely as she could from out her mischievous hazel eyes. It might have been nervousness which kept her tiny foot in motion, but it seemed very like a desire to make a football of her kneeling suitor.

“I have two reasons, sir,” she said, “for declining the honor you intended me. The first is, I have determined not to marry at all, and the second, that you are by no means the person likely to make me change this resolution.”

Had Mr. Burney been practicing that exercise in gymnastics, by which one rises at a single jerk from a horizontal to an upright position, he could not more suddenly have changed his suppliant attitude to the most rigid of perpendiculars.

“Madam,” he replied, in that husky voice which men in a passion assume when trying to appear cool. “Madam, the first reason is so singular for a person in your situation, that the second excites no surprise.”

Ariana was an orphan and dependent upon her brothers-in-law. Her piquante face exhibited no irritation at this insulting remark; although the motion of her pugnacious little foot was somewhat quickened, a merry laugh was the only rejoinder.

Mr. Atherton Burney was prepared for a burst of indignant scorn, but he found no words to express his surprise and indignation at this ill-timed mirth; he wheeled round as if on drill, “right about face,” and made a “forward march,” which did not terminate till he found himself, hat in hand, upon the pavement of Washington Square. His head and his temper being by this time a little cooled, his few scattering brains were again packed in their narrow-brimmed receptacle, and none who met Mr. Atherton Burney that day on the pavé, suspected that behind his elegant moustache a refusal was sticking in his throat.



No two persons are more dissimilar than a gentleman dining-out, and the same individual quietly taking a family dinner at home. The smiling guest has a keen relish for every article placed before him, and should the rules of etiquette not allow him to express his gratification in words, he manifests in every possible way his entire approbation of the cuisine of his host.

Mr. Andrew Dormer was a favorite guest at the tables of his wealthy fellow-citizens. His perfect suavity of manner, his keen appreciation of gastronomic art, and his skillful carving, won greater favor than would the possession of the richest treasures of learning or the highest intellectual endowments. “A clever fellow,” was Andrew Dormer when dining out. But, whereas the rules of society require that a guest should be pleased with every thing, the modern social economy demands that the master of a family should, at home, be pleased with nothing. The forementioned sprites of the air who attended at the family dinners of the Dormers, were beginning to look a little glum; the only bright things to be seen on these occasions were the polished knives and Miss Ariana’s eyes.

The door had scarcely closed after the exit of Mr. Atherton Burney, when the shuffling and stamping were heard by which the lord of the mansion was wont to announce his arrival. Before the meek Mrs. Dormer obtained a view of that redoubtable personage, a scolding soliloquy fell upon her trembling ear.

“Nothing ever in order in this house! A mat I bought only a month ago, all torn to rags! Smell of dinner coming all the way to the front door! Over-done! Knew it by the first snuff! Bad servants! All this comes of a careless mistress. Harriet! Harriet, I say!”

“What is it, Andrew?” inquired the soft voice of Mrs. Dormer, as she put her head timidly out of the dining-room door.

“Nothing in this house but rack and ruin,” exclaimed Mr. Dormer, dashing more vinegar into his tone and manner than either the occasion or his own feelings required. “What’s the use of buying any thing, I say, if this is the way it is to be treated?” And he pointed at the mat, which his own outrageous stamping had torn to tatters.

Ariana had the same instinctive knowledge of a family feud as the war-horse has of a battle, and rushed to the charge in her sister’s defense.

“What!” she exclaimed, “all that hemp left of the mat you have tried so faithfully to annihilate! When I heard your last furious attack, I did not think there would be a single shred remaining in the shape of a mat.”

Such a beseeching look as Mrs. Dormer gave Ariana as she herself stood trembling in her shoes!

What was the reason, that instead of becoming indignant at the impertinence of his sister-in-law, Mr. Dormer tried to look amiable? It might have been that he read that mischievous glance, which said, “Ignoble ambition to be a triton among ‘minnows.’ ”

If Ariana had not been dependent she would have been less saucy, but so fearful was she of becoming cringing from interested motives, that she went to the other extreme, and dared

“To beard the lion in his den.”

The brother-in-law could no more dispense with her racy society, than with pungent sauces for his piscatory favorites. Instead of becoming angry when Ariana declared that she had seen too much of men at home ever to marry, he was heartily glad of a determination which insured the continuance under his roof of his merry antagonist.

Never was married woman so wretched herself that she discouraged matrimony among her young relatives and friends. Scarcely were the Dormers seated at dinner, and the first outbreak of invectives against cook, waiter and market-woman at an end, than the meek Harriet remarked, with an attempt at the playfulness for which she was distinguished before broken to the hymenial yoke: “Ariana, you had better have the ham placed before you, that you may learn to carve, as I suspect from the visit which you received this morning that you will soon be at the head of your own table.”

Mr. Dormer checked the grimace by which he was expressing disgust at the over-done mutton before him, and stared, but ventured not a question.

“Never more mistaken in your life, sister. Mr. Dormer cannot spare me,” was Ariana’s laughing reply; “he would burst a blood-vessel in one of his fury-fits, if I were not here to soothe him.”

“Am I such a tyrant then?” asked Mr. Dormer, in nearly as humble a tone as his wife would have used.

“A very despot; but not worse at heart than most men. There is scarcely one who does not revenge himself for the rude world’s buffetings, by inflicting all sorts of petty annoyances upon those at home,” was the calm reply.

“You will certainly be an old maid, Ariana,” remarked Mrs. Dormer, as she cast a furtive glance at the engrossing object of all her thoughts.

“A consummation devoutly to be wished,” said Ariana, smiling at the fearful tone in which the remark was made. “I had rather be caged in a menagerie, than obliged from morning to night to listen to the growling of a human tiger.”

“Mr. Atherton Burney is very mild, and only needs a gentle shepherdess to make him perfectly lamb-like,” said Mr. Dormer, with an attempt at sportiveness which reminded his sister of the fabled donkey emulating the lap-dog’s playfulness.

“I never liked pastorals,” she began, but the time for joking was at an end.

The servant, in handing Mr. Dormer a glass of water, spilled part of the contents upon his plate, and stood trembling at the angry rebuke which his carelessness had called forth.

“Misnamed lords of creation,” thought Ariana for the hundredth time, as she saw what a trifle had disturbed her brother’s equanimity.

There was a dead silence for a few moments, only broken by the clatter of knives and forks, and then Mr. Dormer, casting very much such a glance at his sister-in-law as a naughty boy would at his offended mamma, muttered—“the steamer is in to-day and the banks are breaking faster than ever.”

Mrs. Dormer looked sympathetic at this intelligence, and Ariana remarked kindly—“Business troubles you then! It must be very tormenting,” and a suspicion flashed across her mind that men, after all, might sometimes have an excuse for their ill-humor.

“Well, if we are to lose our money, let us keep our temper,” she added, as she rose to leave the table. Then turning to her sister she said—“Don’t sit up for me, Harriet. If I am not at home before nine, I shall stay all night at sister Jane’s—she sent for me to spend the evening with her, and—and you know it is always quite uncertain whether Mr. Daley will be in a humor to escort me home.”



“If I were only sure that fishes did not feel, I should not mind hooking them,” said a lad of tender heart.

Miss Ariana Huntingdon was convinced that men did not feel, and therefore had not the slightest scruple in taking captive as many as came within range of her fascinations.

Had the misanthropical little coquette been old, or ugly, the stronger sex would have risen in a body to expel her from the city, but being very young and very pretty, they seemed to love her all the better for her alledged heresy as to man’s supremacy.

“That is one of the most beautiful apparitions that I ever met,” said a young gentleman who caught a glimpse of our heroine upon a fashionable promenade, crowded with insipid faces, whose fair unmeaningness was made more conspicuous from being contrasted with the gayest of colors.

“Ashes of roses” would have been the only appropriate hue for some of these passé damsels, of whose bloom certainly but the cinders were remaining, on which the marks of their former beauty were faintly traced in flittering characters.

There was a peculiar freshness and individuality in Ariana’s appearance, arising from her clear, original intellect, which made her always noticed, even by those who did not admire the piquant style of her beauty. Then her dress, without trespassing upon the mode of the season, bore some tasteful addition, so unique, that it was at once surmised that she must be very distingué to be allowed such independence.

“Madame Bonheurie has not a hat trimmed in that manner,” said a characterless parvenu, who could not have afforded even a ribbon without a pedigree.

The article of dress, thus criticised, was a hat of delicate rose-color, but, alas! instead of wearing the stiff top-knots of ribbon which were then in vogue, Ariana had arranged the trimming so as to drop upon one side, without hiding the swan-like throat of its petite wearer. Her mantle, too, though unexceptionable in the richness and color of the velvet, was but slightly trimmed, and its graceful sleeves were quite unlike the stiff armlets through which some fair ladies’ hands were peeping in unnatural constraint.

Ariana, while smiling sweetly on her acquaintances, so moderated her tokens of favor upon this particular day, that no one stepped to her side to offer their escort, for she was deep in meditation,

“Am I really anxious to be an old maid?” was the question she was revolving in her own mind, and every antiquated maiden whom she met seemed to weigh against the affirmative that an hour since she would have been ready to pronounce.

“Yes,” however, sprung to her lips as she entered the parlor of Professor Daley, or rather study, as it might more appropriately be named. All signs of feminine refinement were neutralised in this uncomfortable apartment by huge piles of books, placed where most convenient for that gentleman.

If Mrs. Daley flew into a passion on the subject, and declared that she had seldom a place where a guest could be seated, he took up another volume, and perhaps, laid the one he had been reading upon the only vacant chair.

“You are the rudest man in the world, Madison,” was Ariana’s involuntary exclamation, as her learned connection gave her a kind of chin bow when she entered the apartment, without appearing to favor her with a single glance.

“That is what I always tell him,” rejoined Jane, who seemed, as is the case with some one in most families, to have absorbed all the spirit intended amply to endow the whole; “read, read, from morning till night. I might as well have no husband.”

Like the boy under stoical tuition, if Mr. Daley had learned nothing else from philosophy, it had enabled him to meet reproach with perfect calmness. It is questionable, however, if that mode of meeting reproach is a virtue, which instead of turning away wrath, infuriates it beyond all bounds. Mr. Daley’s perfect indifference to the happiness of every living thing, was the alkali to the acid of Mrs. Daley’s character, and produced violent fermentation. How cold those blue eyes of his looked through the green spectacles worn to repair the effect of constant study by lamp-light! It would have been well if the carpet could have been defended from the effects of these nocturnal vigils, as many a spot was visible in spite of the constant wear which had reduced the once elastic Brussels to a floor-cloth consistency.

Home, to the man of science, was only a place where the torch of mind was to be re-lighted; his wife, a being who fed it with oil, and her house the mere laboratory used for those supplies of a physical nature which made the ethereal flame burn purer and brighter.

What a pity it is that all who are destined to play the part of cyphers have not a taste for nonentity! Mrs. Daley, as she often told her husband, who, however, had not once seemed to hear the remark, “never dreamed before her marriage that it would come to this.” To be sure he had been a different man as a lover, but it is one of the standing wonders of the world how the wise and great ever condescended to the foolishness of courting; yet philosophers in love are always lamentably absent, and being quite out of their element, flounder away more boisterously than any other kind of fish, but marriage puts them again at ease, and then their cold blood creeps on uninterrupted in its sluggish course.

“Old maid or not old maid,” again passed through Ariana’s mind as her eyes rested on Mr. Daley’s boots, which, in their turn, rested upon the marble mantelpiece.

“Literary men are I presume all just such bears, and men of business like Andrew.” Single-blessedness would have carried the day had not the most finical of her maiden acquaintance arisen to efface the images of the brothers-in-law.

“Do these old books make you happy, Madison Daley?” she asked, when her sister was quite exhausted with the relation of her grievances. The Professor had been caught looking up at the cessation of the sound of his wife’s tongue, which he seemed to have imagined was to be perpetual.

One cannot pretend to deafness as easily when they meet the eye of a questioner, and a cold “Yes,” fell from the thin lips of the philosopher. He instantly resumed reading a “Treatise upon the promotion of individual happiness, as the only certain way of enhancing national prosperity.”

It was a lucky thing for Ariana, that with her quick perception of character she had so strong a love for the ludicrous, for what otherwise might have aroused her indignation now only excited her mirth. The incongruity between Professor Daley’s philanthropic studies and his habitual selfishness, struck her as so droll that she burst into a merry peal of laughter. The astonished glance of the Professor at this sudden merriment said quite plainly, “Is the girl demented?” and Jane’s querulous voice, still more audibly,

“It is easy enough to laugh at other people’s misfortunes! I only wish that I may live to see you married, and yet as much alone and as dependent on your own exertions, as if you had no natural protector.”

Ariana knew by long experience that her sister considered Mr. Daley’s faults as her exclusive property, and wished others to speak of him always as if he were a model of a man. When she spoke in society herself of her learned husband, no one would have dreamed that she had discovered the feet of her idol to be of clay, but in tête-à-têtes she even insinuated to him that they were slightly cloven.

Ariana had a good share of mother wit, and knew very well the wisdom of exciting a counteracting passion when she had subjected herself to reproof by her open disrespect toward her learned brother-in-law.

“You told me, sister,” she said soothingly, “that you expected company, and my aid would be needed in preparing for their reception.”

All Mrs. Daley’s motions were sudden, and at this remark she started up, exclaiming, “There! I have not given half my orders in the kitchen, and I dare say that the children have put the dining-room all out of order while I have been talking here. Do go and see to them, while I tell Betty what linen to put on the bed in the spare room.”

One would have thought that the dining-room might have been sacred to eating and drinking, but the Professor had insisted on piling the surplus of his library in one corner of this cold, parlor-looking apartment. People have various ideas of comfort, but to Ariana’s eyes the disorder which her pretty little niece and nephew had caused was rather an improvement.

Archie had built a very respectable house out of the Encyclopedias, and a large stone inkstand, which luckily was corked, served very well, when turned upside down, for a parlor centre-table. A smaller one and an accompanying sand-box, from his mother’s escritoir, answered for ottomans, and upon them two table-napkins, with strings round their waists, to improve their figures, were sitting up, quite like ladies and gentlemen.

The bright faces of Archie and Etta wore a troubled expression, at the opening of the door, but it turned to one of unfeigned delight as they both scampered toward Ariana, exclaiming—“Oh, aunty, come and see our pretty baby-house. We have found out such a nice way of using pa’s tiresome old books.”

Like the cat transformed to a lady, who always showed her feline origin at the sight of a mouse, Ariana seemed always to return to childhood when in company with Archie and Etta. Mrs. Daley might as well have set a monkey to keep them out of mischief, for down dropped the moderator on the floor beside the baby-house, and commenced twisting the napkins into most ludicrous imitations of humanity. Etta finding that while her aunty was thus employed, she could get a nice chance at playing with her hair, slily drew out the comb and fell to “turling it” over her little fingers, while Archie clapped his hands and danced about in wild delight at the beauty of the napkin ladies and gentlemen—Hark! there was a footstep in the hall—no! two. The door opened and the Professor, with scarcely a glance at the occupants of the room, thrust into it a tall, fine-looking stranger, and merely saying, “My sister-in-law, Cousin Arthur,” retreated.

Ariana was so much amused at this strange introduction of the visiter, that she scarcely thought of her own disordered appearance.

“So, brother Madison has ejected you, sir, from his study at once,” she said smiling. “His way of making people completely at home is by turning them out of his own door. Do take a seat with us children, and my sister will be here presently.”

Arthur Grayson had a great respect for his cousin, the Professor, having never seen him in domestic life, and only knowing his high reputation among the scientific men of the day. He was ignorant of the reason why Ariana spoke in so disrespectful a tone of so near a connection, and it seemed a want of politeness.

“No beauty can atone for such rudeness,” he thought to himself, but replied courteously, “My cousin probably knew what society I should find most entertaining, and I am glad that he did not allow me to trespass upon his time.”

Before Ariana could answer this remark, Jane emerged from a staircase leading to the kitchen, with a bowl in her hand, exclaiming, “Do, Ariana, stir up this cake.”

In her surprise at the sight of the stranger, the bowl slipped from her hand and fell on the floor, scattering its yet fluid contents in every direction. Our pretty man-hater turned mischievously toward Arthur Grayson, to observe how he bore the bespattering of the very elegant suit of broadcloth in which his unexceptionable form was enveloped, but instead of betraying any marks of irritation, he said with perfect self-command and good-humor, “I presume that the dispenser of such good things can only be that Lady Bountiful, my Cousin Jane, of whose open-handed hospitality I have often heard.”

It could never have been said of Mrs. Daly that she was

“Mistress of herself though china fall.”

And to have lost china and cake both together was quite too severe a trial of her patience.

Ariana immediately came to her relief, by saying to the guest very politely, “Will you walk into the study with me, sir? I assure you that Madison does not care how many people are there, so he is saved from the task of entertaining them.”

“It is all the fault of that selfish animal,” she added mentally. “What is the use of all the learning in the world if unmixed with a particle of common sense?”



A week after Arthur Grayson’s arrival in the city, the following letter was received at his father’s delightful residence on the banks of the Susquehanna:

My dearest Mother,—Were it not for the domestic happiness I have witnessed at home, I should begin to believe that no literary man ought ever to marry. When I remember your anecdotes of the mischievous pranks of little Madison Daley, and then look at his immovable face, I can scarcely believe that he is the same individual. His soul, during the last seven years, must have as completely changed as the elements of that stiff-knit frame, which day and night is bent over some ponderous volume, for not an atom of playfulness or bonhommie now enters into his composition. Perhaps a ‘silent loving woman’ might have retarded this metamorphosis, but Cousin Jane is of quite a different class. Out of respect to you, dear mother, I try always to think that women are free from blame, and sincerely commiserate the philosopher’s wife, who makes me thoroughly uncomfortable, by trying to make me comfortable, and her children wretched, in endeavoring to bring them up properly. Her promised visit to Castleton, will, I am sure, be a green spot in her existence, and the mummy husband makes no opposition to the excursion. Will you have the kindness to include in your invitation, Miss Ariana Huntingdon, a sister of Madison’s wife, whom I should like you to know as a peculiar specimen of womanhood? She has wit and beauty enough to fascinate any man, were it not for her having conceived so thorough and unfeminine a contempt for mankind, that she is often guilty of such rudeness that my heart resists all her attractions. Andrew Dormer and Madison Daley are not, it is true, such men as would give any person of discernment a high respect for our sex, yet it is a mark of a little mind to condemn whole classes for the faults of individuals. Then Miss Ariana is an arrant little coquette, insisting that it is of service to a man to break his heart, as it will have a little softness ever afterward, whereas it otherwise would continue all stone. We have many pleasant tilts on these subjects, and when pushed for a reason, she always maintains her cause by such cunning sarcasms, that I am obliged to own myself defeated. ‘Men at home!’ is her frequent exclamation, in a tone of perfect contempt, at any new proof of the selfishness of her brothers-in-law. I wonder if she would dare to utter this sneer at the lords of creation, after seeing my honored father under his own hospitable roof. Please say to him that I have almost completed the business entrusted to my care, and shall return home in two weeks from to-morrow. Till then, I remain as ever,

“Your devoted son,

Arthur Grayson.”

“This old study is not such a disagreeable room after all,” said Ariana, as she was ensconced in the low window-seat, with Arthur Grayson beside her. They were hidden from the view of her brother-in-law by his long overcoat, which no remonstrances could induce him to have hung elsewhere. “Madison has probably discovered that the parlors of Herculaneum were thus ornamented,” she continued, pointing to a pair of boots which were standing in the midst of the apartment.

“It is a very pleasant room to me,” he replied, “and I shall long remember the hours spent here.”

A glance of joy shot from Ariana’s eyes, but it passed away as she thought, “I dare say both of my brothers-in-law used to say just such agreeable things before they were married.”

“If I ever meet with a man who tries to be disagreeable, I shall believe that he is sincere,” she replied, somewhat pettishly.

“Why do you suspect me of hypocrisy?” said Arthur, coldly. “I remarked that our pleasant chats had cheated me of many weary hours; you cannot doubt that this is the case. I neither said nor intended more.”

Ariana had always applauded sincerity, but this frank avowal did not meet her approbation. The tête-à-tête was becoming awkward, and was luckily interrupted at this juncture by the ring of the postman. A letter was handed to Mr. Grayson; it contained a note which he gave to Miss Huntingdon. She blushed at seeing that it bore the signature of Isabella Grayson, and was penned in a feminine hand, of remarkable delicacy and beauty. The flush on her cheek grew absolutely crimson, as she read the polite invitation to accompany her sister on a visit to Castleton the ensuing month. At that moment Arthur Grayson was wishing that he had not induced his mother to extend her hospitality, as Ariana had of late openly announced her predilections for single blessedness, and had at the same time been so bewitchingly agreeable, that he began to feel that her society was dangerous to his peace.

“I fear I must decline this invitation,” said she, after a pause of some minutes.

“For what reason?” he asked, while his dark eyes were fixed in close scrutiny upon her varying countenance.

Ariana blushed still deeper, and then attempted to smile, but a tear stole to her eye as she replied with great frankness, “We have spent so many delightful hours together that your memory will be very pleasant, but I am afraid that the charm would be broken if I were to see you at home.”

This confession almost drew from Arthur one of still deeper import, but a remembrance flashed upon him of all he had heard of Ariana’s coquetry, and he merely replied, “If that is all, I will remain away from Castleton, rather than deprive my mother and Mrs. Daley of the pleasure of your society.”

This proposition, however, was by no means agreeable.

“Oh, no!” she exclaimed, “I have no idea of exiling you on my account, only promise to try and not be very disagreeable.”

This pledge was easily given. Soon after a messenger arrived to say that Mr. Dormer was quite unwell, and begged that Mrs. Daley would spare Ariana.

If there be any where in the world a striking instance of the fallen pride of humanity, a sick man affords the example.

When Ariana returned, Mr. Dormer was lying on the sofa, in the parlor, in his gay dressing-gown, having absolutely refused to go to his chamber and be regularly treated as a patient. Harriet stood by him with a wine-glass of medicine in one hand, and a saucer of sweetmeats in the other, trying to coax the invalid to swallow the dose she had so carefully prepared for him. The naughtiest of boys never made up such rueful faces, or protested more willfully against the disagreeable injunction.

“There’s no use,” he said at last, angrily; “I’d rather die than swallow such stuff.”

“But, dear Andrew, what could I do without you?” said the affectionate Mrs. Dormer, now almost in tears.

A sudden and violent pain made her husband inclined to change his resolution, and snatching the glass, he said, “There, give me the sweetmeats, quick.” With much writhing and choking, he swallowed a dose which one of his children would have taken without a murmur.

“What is the matter, Andrew?” asked Ariana, kindly, as she stepped to his side.

“Matter enough,” he replied, “my stomach is entirely ruined by the horrid messes on which I have been fed for the last month. A horse could not have stood the cooking to which I have been forced to submit.”

Mr. Dormer, after smoking his digestive organs out of order, in spite of the remonstrances of his friends, now actually believed that he was an injured man, victimised by a bad cook and a careless wife.

Such a miserable week as followed this scene had rarely fallen to Ariana’s lot, but she was really grateful to Mr. Dormer for his disinterested kindness to her, and relieved her sister of much trouble and care. Every day that detained the peevish patient from his business made him still more unreasonable and exacting. He would have been well much sooner if any one could have induced him to obey the orders of the physician. After a dose of calomel, he would insist on a hearty dinner of beef-steak, and when purposely kept in a low state to prevent the danger of fever, called loudly for wine or brandy, declaring that his wife would like nothing better than to see his strength so reduced that there could be no hope of his recovery.

The servants were so exhausted with his caprices that the chambermaid took French leave, and then Mrs. Dormer, who had double duty to perform, was taxed with inattention to his wants.

“I wonder if Arthur Grayson has a strong constitution?” was the question which passed through Ariana’s mind, as she witnessed the daily martyrdom of her meek sister. Now the dressing was all torn from the blisters of the impatient invalid, then the covering thrown off, and a moment after a complaint made that some outer door had been left open on purpose to freeze him to death. Every dose of medicine was taken with a struggle, every word of advice regarded as an infringement on his rights.

Where was that clever fellow, Andrew Dormer? What would the merchants on ’change have said to the transformation? Nothing, we presume, for like himself, they were few of them clever fellows to their own wives and servants.



It is quite an objection to rail-roads and steamboats that they present so few inconveniences as to give one but little opportunity of discovering the temper and good-breeding of their fellow passengers. Nobody is crowded within, nobody has to sit without, no one is sick on the back seat, or lacks support on the middle one, as used to be the case in those dear old stage-coaches, where persons were shaken out of all ceremony, and jostled into a pleasant acquaintance.

A private carriage, however, if well filled, has still its points of trial; and the Grayson equipage, when packed with the Daley family, promises to exercise the patience of its inmates.

Of course, the ladies were too modern to be troubled with bandboxes; but Mrs. Daley’s beautiful traveling-bag, which had been worked by her sister, needed as much tending as a baby; and the bouquet of flowers, which Ariana was carrying from a city green-house to Mrs. Grayson, in a tin case, wanted great care, being sprinkled every time that the horses were watered.

Arthur Grayson had been early schooled to consider annoyance at petty evils as totally unworthy of a man of sense, and there was no affectation in his indifference to his own ease while making the ladies as comfortable as lay within his power. He even succeeded in beguiling Etty from Ariana’s arm to his own, and Jane’s brow grew smoother at every mile, from finding the children so easily amused. Archie Daley had a quick inquiring mind, and drank in eagerly all the information which his friend gave with regard to the objects that they passed on the road. At length, wearied with pleasure, he fell asleep, leaning his whole weight on Arthur’s, while Etta slumbered on his breast, as much at home as if in her nurse’s arms.

Ariana had been unusually silent during the journey. The peculiar gentleness of her companion, his delicate attentions to Jane and herself, with his sweet consideration for the children, and carelessness of his own comfort, made her wish that the journey might be long, and suggested the thought how happy any one would be, who should enjoy such protection through life.

These reflections gave an unusual softness to her generally vivacious manners, which was peculiarly attractive; and Arthur, as he glanced at the little sleeper on his bosom, and then at the sweet smile on Ariana’s face, had his own dreams also of domestic bliss.

These gentle thoughts had not faded from the hearts of our travelers, nor the light of the setting sun from the evening sky, when they entered the open gates of Castleton. An elderly gentleman, of noble appearance, stood on the porch of his fine mansion, to welcome the strangers. His dignified yet kindly manners impressed Ariana with instant respect, but she felt a still deeper emotion in receiving the cordial greetings of Mrs. Grayson. Arthur’s mother was still a beautiful woman, though her hair was slightly silvered with age, for her dark eye was intellectually bright, while a smile of uncommon sweetness played around her pleasant mouth. The heart of the orphan was touched by the motherly kindness of tone with which she was welcomed; and as she heard the joyful greeting which Arthur received from both his parents, and the tender respect with which it was returned, she felt that there was a happiness in domestic life of which she had scarcely dreamed.

“We must not forget your health, Mary, in our pleasure at seeing our friends,” said Judge Grayson, to his wife, as he gently placed her arm in his, and led the way to the cheerful parlor.

How much expression there is in the interior of any dwelling! That tastefully ornamented room, provided with every comfort for the elder members of the family, and filled with materials of amusements for all persons of cultivated minds, breathed nothing but peace and joy.

Arthur placed a footstool at his mother’s feet, and then rang for a servant, to show the ladies to their apartment, while Judge Grayson was helping them to disencumber themselves from some of their numerous wrappings. Archie had loitered to take a ride on the porch, where he had spied a rocking-horse, which had been brought down from the garret with a view to his amusement, while Etty had caught up a kitten which seemed used to nothing but kindness.

“What an excellent housekeeper Mrs. Grayson appears to be!” was Jane’s exclamation, the moment that they reached their apartment. “They say that the judge is a learned man, but I do not see any thing that looks like it.”

A disorderly dwelling, and a cold, disagreeable man at its head, were to Mrs. Daley, alas! the usual indications of the abode of literature. She had not noticed that one little cabinet of books in the parlor, contained some very profound works, and that the large room opposite, was a well furnished library.

The beautiful art of making others happy had been so completely studied by Mrs. Grayson, that before the evening passed away, Mrs. Daley and her sister scarcely remembered that they were guests. As Ariana began to feel perfectly at home, her natural vivacity arose, and the judge smiled pleasantly at her lively rejoinders to the playful remarks of his son.

Now and then Mrs. Grayson looked up a little seriously, from her conversation on family affairs with Jane, as if afraid that Arthur might be tempted to some slight rudeness, in replying to the gay sallies of his companion.



When Ariana awoke the next morning, she feared that her last night’s enjoyment had been all a dream; but a glance around her chamber convinced her that at least she was not in the habitation of either of her sisters.

The sound of a loud, manly voice below, fully restored her to consciousness, and with it came the tormenting thought that it must be Judge Grayson. I am afraid that after all he is like other men at Home, was her mental ejaculation.

The voice came nearer, but its tones were not harsh, and Ariana now distinctly heard the words, “Up, up, Arthur! Your mother wishes a letter sent to the village, and we ride there on horseback before breakfast. Hurry, my boy!”

“Here I am, sir, booted and spurred,” was distinctly audible, in a gay, yet respectful tone. And then the cheerful voices of father and son, as they mounted their horses and rode away.

“Take another muffin, Miss Ariana,” said the judge, as they sat at breakfast. “It may be vanity, but I think my wife always manages to have nicer muffins than are found any where else in the whole country. I know Arthur is of the same opinion, for he gives us the best possible proof of it.”

The son gave a smiling assent, and Ariana thought of Andrew Dormer and his habit of finding fault with every thing that was placed before him.

It is not much the fashion at the present day for young men to consult their parents with regard to their love affairs, but Arthur Grayson walked closely in the footsteps of his father, and he was a gentleman of the old school. Were this mode more prevalent, there would not be so many unhappy mothers-in-law and such miserable wives.

The visiters from the city had spent two days at Castleton before Arthur could ask his mother’s advice about the subject which lay nearest his heart. The moment, however, that he found an opportunity of speaking to her alone, he said, eagerly, “What do you think of Ariana?”

“A question that I am not yet qualified to answer, my son,” was her reply, while she looked earnestly into his troubled face, as if seeking to discover how deeply he was interested in the inquiry, which he had just made.

“You do not like her, I see plainly,” he hastily remarked, in a tone of bitter disappointment.

“You are much mistaken in that supposition, my dear Arthur. On the contrary, her frankness and talents interest me exceedingly, and even her faults make me anxious for a more intimate acquaintance, for I think that I might be of service in aiding her to overcome them. I am not sure, however, that she would be a suitable companion for life for my darling son, if that is what you wish to know.”

“Then I must not stay here any longer,” he exclaimed, impetuously. “I have too much confidence in your judgment to believe that I could ever be happy with any one, of whose character you disapproved. I feared that it would be so.”

“You are too hasty, Arthur. Why does the opinion I have expressed make it necessary for you to leave home?”

“Because I have discovered that I love her too well to trust myself longer in her society,” he answered, with agitation.

“Then you are right in your resolution. Why do you not make your long promised visit to Carysford Lee? If I find on further acquaintance that Ariana is worthy of your affection, you shall not long remain in ignorance of the conclusion.”

“Thank you,” Arthur replied, and then sorrow of heart prevented him from adding more, but kissing affectionately his mother’s pale cheek, he hastily left the apartment.

Ariana’s face was radiant with smiles when she descended to the dining-room. Her gayety, however, quickly disappeared when Arthur, who sat next to her at the table, asked abruptly, “Have you any commands for my friend, Lee? I am going this afternoon to Allendale, to remain with him for a few weeks.”

Luckily for Ariana, Jane immediately exclaimed, “What, going to run away from us so soon. How will the children get along without you?”

“Please don’t go, sir!” said Archie, mournfully. “I cannot finish my new bow without your help.”

“I will show you about it,” said the judge, kindly, “and take you to ride on horseback behind me, just as Arthur has done.”

By this time Ariana had recovered her composure, and said, with an attempt at gayety, “What a delightful time we ladies shall have with none to molest or make us afraid. The only fear will be, that I shall quite forget my saucy ways if I have no one to practice them upon.”

“Suppose you should make me a target for your wit,” said the judge, playfully.

“My weapons would only rebound upon myself, with so invulnerable a mark,” she replied, in a respectful tone.

A conversation, in which evident constraint was visible, followed, and every one glad when the meal was at last over. An hour afterward Arthur’s horse was brought round to the door, and with an air of extreme embarrassment, he bade Mrs. Daley and Ariana a hasty farewell. The assumed indifference of the latter was so well counterfeited, that her lover rode away with the full conviction that his absence was considered as a relief.



The next morning, Judge Grayson was obliged to leave Castleton to attend a court at a neighboring village, and the ladies were left in sole possession of the mansion.

“How dull it is here to-day,” said Ariana, to her sister, as they were tête-à-tête, while Mrs. Grayson was occupied with domestic affairs. “I just saw a pair of boots at the door of the opposite chamber, and it was actually a delightful sight. I really think that everlasting overcoat of Madison’s would be a pleasant addition to our prospect in this dearth of mankind.”

Jane was delighted at a chance to revenge herself for all Ariana’s attacks upon the odd ways of the professor. “What ails you,” she said, “to make such strange remarks? They come very unexpectedly from such a professed man-hater. Why I have heard you say, that Eden could not be a Paradise to you, if men were allowed to enter it.”

“Let by-gones be by-gones, Jenny. We grow wiser every day,” said Ariana, playfully. “Do you need me here this morning?”

“No, I shall be busy in copying these receipts for cake, but if you will have an eye to the children who are down stairs, I shall be obliged to you.”

Ariana took up her basket containing a pair of slippers, which she was working for Andrew Dormer, and went into the parlor, where she hoped to find Mrs. Grayson.

That lady was, however, not there, but soon came in, and setting down her work, commenced one of those easy, confidential chats, which make two people better acquainted than years of intercourse in general society.

“I am going to ask a question, which you will think very strange,” said Ariana, at length, “but it would make me so much happier if I was certain about it.”

“What is it, dear?” asked the kind lady, with a benevolent smile, which encouraged curiosity.

“Will you then tell me,” said Ariana, hesitatingly, “if Judge Grayson is always as kind and agreeable at home as he appears to us?”

The tears rose to Mrs. Grayson’s eyes as she answered, “He has never been otherwise. I could not with propriety have replied to your question if I had not testimony to bear to his never failing love and kindness.”

“Oh! how glad I am!” exclaimed Ariana, with a fervency that startled her companion. “All the men I know are so disagreeable in their own homes, and so neglectful of the comfort of their wives, that I thought the rest of the world were like them.”

“It is too true, my child,” said Mrs. Grayson, kindly, “that there are those who sacrifice their private peace to their public duties, or exhibit at home the vexation consequent upon lives of constant toil and anxiety. Even where this is the case, however, it is a woman’s duty to give her home all the cheerfulness in her power; and if her husband is not in private life what she could wish, the secret should be confined to her own bosom.”

Mrs. Grayson was one of the few persons who can give advice so discreetly as not to wound the feelings of the person whom they are trying to benefit. Her last remark made Ariana feel the impropriety of having allowed the faults of her brothers-in-law, who were generous, indeed, though their manners were often so disagreeable. Her confession in this respect was so frankly made, that it won upon Mrs. Grayson’s affection, and their conversation continued in a still more confidential tone.

Day after day Ariana would glide down into the parlor, to enjoy a tête-à-tête with her new friend, while Jane was occupied with her receipts, and the children busy at play. Her laughing philosophy was only the armor of pride, and her warm, generous feelings gushed forth unrestrained, in conversing with Mrs. Grayson. The sportive bursts of humor, which were so perfectly natural to her lively disposition, awoke in the elder lady some of the vivacity of her early years, and Jane would be startled from her monotonous employment, by the sound of their merry laughter. Insensibly the bright, impulsive girl was winding around the heart of her friend, in trying to win whose approbation her own character was rapidly improving.

There was only one subject on which there was not perfect confidence between Mrs. Grayson and Ariana. Arthur’s name was never mentioned by either of them. Ariana could not with delicacy, tell his mother how bitterly she was grieved at his departure, but her languid eyes, and frequently wandering thoughts, revealed the truth.

Sometimes, when at evening Judge Grayson returned from court, she saw the affectionate meeting with his dear wife, she would sigh deeply, as if looking on happiness that could never be her own.

The six weeks which Mrs. Daley intended to spend at Castleton, had passed rapidly away. On the morrow the family were to return to the city, and all regretted the necessity for their separation.

As Ariana sat listening to the regrets of Mrs. Grayson and her sister that their intercourse was so soon to be terminated, she was unable to command her spirits, and under pretence of breathing the fresh air, walked out upon the piazza. She stood looking toward the stars in melancholy abstraction, when a gentleman came suddenly around the corner of the house, and stood at her side. “Mr. Grayson!” she exclaimed, with such unaffected joy, that a smile of delight beamed on his face as he eagerly seized her proffered hand.

“Did you not then know that I was to return this evening?” he asked. “Could you think that I would allow you to depart without saying farewell?”

“You left us so abruptly, that I did not know what to expect,” she replied, blushing deeply.

“Did you not object to coming here lest my presence should mar your enjoyment?” he inquired, mischievously.

“But you know,” she replied, with warmth, “what was the reason for that silly remark.”

“Why silly? If seeing me at home might destroy your respect, it was quite wise to send me into banishment,” he remarked, playfully.

“But I could not have done so, I am sure, now,” she replied, earnestly.

“Have you really sufficient faith in any man to believe him free from the faults which I have so often heard you impute to the whole sex?”

The question was put in a jesting tone, but Arthur listened eagerly for her reply.

“Your father’s constant politeness has overcome all those foolish prejudices. I do believe that his son may resemble him.”

“Would you dare to trust your happiness to the keeping of that son?” he asked, with tender earnestness.

“I should,” she replied with characteristic promptness, while a tear glistened in her eye.

“Then why may not this place henceforth be your home. My mother already loves you dearly, and my father’s approbation sanctions my suit.”

Ariana’s consent was easily won to this proposition, and then Arthur went to announce his own arrival to the family circle, while she stole to her apartment to compose her agitated heart.

Mrs. Daley insisted that Ariana should remain with her a month previous to her marriage, and then Mrs. Dormer pleaded for a visit of equal length. Andrew would have been quite out of humor at her loss, were it not for the pleasure of hearing that she had given up her rebellious thoughts as to man’s supremacy. The professor was so much ameliorated by Jane’s more prudent conduct, that he presented the bride elect with a set of very dry books, in token of regard for her choice. Mr. Dormer made her many valuable gifts, though his manner of bestowing favors almost neutralized the pleasure which he otherwise would have conferred.

Ariana Huntingdon has been for many years a happy wife. Arthur Grayson has found that well regulated wit and cheerful independence, heighten domestic life; and Ariana asserts that men deserve the title of Lords of Creation, and that her Arthur, to be fully appreciated, must be seen “at Home.”





It is not that I shrink to yield

  My soul to God, whose claim is just;

I know my spirit is his own,

  And that this human frame is dust;

To Him my higher powers I owe,

  The light of mind, the faith of love;

Too mean the service of a life

  My ceaseless gratitude to prove;

But still I pause in mortal fear,

For life is sweet—and death is drear.


The ties that bound me close to earth

  With deep affection’s tender chain,

Were severed by his sovereign will,

  And tears and agony were vain;

And blighted hope and withering care

  Their shadows o’er my soul have cast;

And sunny dreams, that fancy wove

  Of rainbow hues, too soon have past;

But still I pause in mortal fear,

And life is sweet—and death is drear.


For memory brings to me again

  The dear ones that are laid to rest,

And scenes ’mid which they bore a part

  In lovely visions haunt my breast;

Their looks, their words, their beaming smiles,

  Soft tears from out my eyelids press;

They’re with me through the waking day,

  My nightly slumbers gently bless;

And still I pause in mortal fear,

  For life is sweet—and death is drear.


My faithful friends whose gentle deeds

  Of kindness words were poor to tell;

My daily walks, my favorite flowers,

  The page where genius throws its spell,

And Nature with its varied hues,

  Where spring and summer brightly glows,

By many a fine and subtle link

  Of custom round my being grows;

And still I pause in mortal fear,

  For life is sweet—and death is drear.


Kind Lord! subdue this trembling dread,

  My spirit nerve with firmer zeal,

Death is the portal of our life,

  Its promised good Thou wilt reveal;

And in thy word I read with joy

  The blessings that believers share,

And peace within my bosom steals,

  The heavenly peace that springs from prayer;

No more I pause in mortal fear,

The grave is sweet when Thou art near.






(Concluded from page 199.)


We will take a brief retrospect of the last two years in the life of Crayford.

Upon a pleasant summer evening, two gentlemen, mounted on fine, spirited steeds, came gayly cantering down the gentle slope of a hill, and across the rustic bridge which formed the entrance to a small village in the interior of Pennsylvania, just as a party of merry milk-maids were returning the same way from the green pastures beyond. The road, or rather lane, was here quite narrow, and observing the rapid approach of the equestrians, the girls hastily stepping aside into the deep grass, stood still for them to pass by. Instead of doing so, however, they slackened their pace, and one of them reining in his steed, gazed impertinently into the blushing faces of the village girls.

“By heavens!” he exclaimed, in a low voice to his companion, “what a pair of eyes that little witch has in the blue petticoat—and what a shape! look at her, Hastings.”

The damsel thus pointed out could not have been more than sixteen. In face and form a perfect Hebe, with a most superb pair of laughing black eyes, shaded by long curling lashes. Her little sun-bonnet was thrown off, but rested loosely upon her shoulders; her hair, which was as black and brilliant as her eyes, was cut short to her beautiful neck, and clustered in tight ringlets over her finely formed head, upon the top of which sat her pail of foaming milk. With one hand she held it lightly poised, while the other rested upon her hip, in an attitude most graceful and picturesque. Her petticoat was of dark-blue bombazet, set off by a white muslin short-gown reaching half way to the knees, where it was finished with a narrow frilling—a dress still in vogue among the farmers’ daughters both in Pennsylvania and New England—and a very pretty dress it is, too. Her little feet were bare, hiding themselves modestly in the tall grass.

“The girl is an angel—a perfect divinity!” replied Hastings, after a rude stare at the young maid, “What a sensation she would make—eh, Crayford!”

“I say, Hastings,” added the other, with a devilish leer, “it will be worth our while to stay here a day or two—what say you?”

To this Hastings returned a significant wink, which was responded to by the other in the same way.

During these remarks they had rode slowly on, but now suddenly wheeling his horse, Crayford once more approached the little group, and lifting his hat, bowed most gracefully as he said,

“Can you tell me, fair maidens, where my friend and myself may be so fortunate as to find a night’s lodging? We are somewhat fatigued with a long day’s ride, and would fain rest our weary limbs, as also our jaded steeds. Can you direct us, then, to some public house in your village?”

A sprightly blue-eyed girl, delighted to be of service to the polite stranger, stepped quickly forward, and said, while her cheeks grew redder and redder, and her eyes rounded with every word:

“O, yes, sir, there is a good tavern at the other end of the village, and here is Effie Day, she lives there, you know, for it is her grandfather who keeps the house; here, Effie, you will show the gentleman the way, wont you Effie?”

“By all the saints, how lucky!” whispered Crayford, to his friend—Effie proving to be no other than the identical maiden who had so charmed him.

Springing from his horse, and throwing the reins to Hastings with a meaning glance, Crayford lifted the pail from the head of the blushing girl, and begged the privilege of assisting her with her burden, while she acted as his guide to the inn. The girls all laughed merrily at this, but Effie, blushing still deeper, drew her sun-bonnet closely over her face, and tripped lightly on before him, so fleetly, too, whether from bashfulness or mischief, that her gallant could scarcely keep pace with her twinkling feet. On reaching the inn, his fair guide suddenly disappeared, leaving Crayford to dispose of the milk-pail as he could, to the no small delight of Hastings, who highly enjoyed the evident discomfiture of his friend.

The old landlord welcomed the strangers heartily, and gave them the best rooms his house could boast, and soon placed before them an excellent supper. But what gave it its true zest was the attendance of the pretty milk-maid—and a more lovely cup-bearer never served the gods.

Poor Effie Day was but an infant when both her parents were taken from her by death, and no other home had she ever known than the roof of her kind old grandfather. With a tenderness far exceeding that which they had felt for their own children did her grandparents regard her, and in pity for her orphan state, indulged her in every wish which it was in their power to grant. As she grew up her beauty and vivacity was their pride, and no theme could sooner reach their hearts than the praises of their darling Effie. She was brought up in all the simplicity of country life; a circuit of ten miles the boundary of her little world, and from books her knowledge was scarcely more. Yet the birds which sang at her window, or the lambs with whom she skipped in the meadows, were not more gay or happy than was the old inn-keeper’s bright darling child, when like the serpent in Paradise, Crayford came. He found the honest old couple and the artless Effie of the very sort whom his cunning could most easily dupe, and with skill which would not have disgraced a demon, set about his fiendish work—for most cogent reasons of his own disguising his name under that of Belmont, while his worthy coadjutor assumed that of Jervis.

Feigning to be charmed with the locality of this little town, they made known their intention of passing several weeks in its vicinity. But why enter into the details of a plot such as should call down the avenging bolt of heaven. Suffice it, alas! to say, that sin and villainy triumphed, and as pure a child as ever the finger of God rested upon, was enticed from her home, from her poor old doting grandparents.

Under a solemn promise of marriage the unfortunate Effie eloped with her base betrayer.

Upon reaching Philadelphia, the form of marriage was gone through with by a convenient priest, and the sacrifice of innocence completed. For some months, but for the memory of the aged couple, in the silent shades of her native valley, she was as happy as a young confiding wife could be in the love, nay, adoration of her husband. The lodgings Crayford rented were in an obscure part of the city, and furnished most meagerly for the taste of one accustomed to fashionable display, yet Effie, who had never seen any thing more grand than the parson’s parlor at home, thought even a queen could not be more sumptuously lodged, and she was very sure could not be more happy.

Poor, poor Effie!

This devotion on the part of Crayford continued while his humor lasted—no longer; nor did one gleam of pity for the unfortunate girl lead him to wear the mask only as long as suited his own pleasure. The heart sickens to dwell upon the anguish of poor Effie, thus abandoned by one for whom she had sacrificed all—one so friendless, so forlorn, so young and so beautiful.

The woman with whom she lodged allowed her to remain under her roof until she had stripped her of the little she possessed—of her clothing, and the few ornaments Crayford had given her; then, when no more was to be gained, she thrust her forth into the streets to die, or live by a fate worse than death!

Alas! that in a world so fair as this, such things really are, needing no aid from fancy to portray their atrociousness.

All day did the poor girl wander through the busy crowd, gazing piteously into the faces of the multitude, and if by chance one more kindly than others bent an eye upon her, she would ask them for Belmont. But no one could tell her aught. And then night came—dark, desolate night. On, from street to street passed the unfortunate, shrinking from the rude stare, and still ruder speech of brutes calling themselves men; no one offering a shelter to the houseless wanderer, and even her own sex meeting her appeals with coarse, unfeeling laughter.

Blame her not, that suddenly yielding to the despair of her young heart, she sought in death relief.

It was near the hour of midnight when she found herself upon one of the wharves. Dark and cold stretched the river before her; dark and cold was to her the world she was leaving. For a moment she paused, and gazed despairingly around her; tears trickled down her pallid cheeks, for she felt she was young to die; and she wept still more when she thought upon her aged grandparents, who would never know her sad fate. Then arose before her, floating as it were upon the heaving mass of waters, on which her eyes were fixed, that peaceful valley, with the green hills sweeping around it, and the rustic dwellings of her playmates and friends looking out upon her beseechingly from their pleasant shades as she stood there in her loneliness; and as a far-off symphony of sweet sounds came floating by, the glad voices which Nature had sang to her in childhood. Poor Effie Day! what pleasant memories were crowded into those few brief moments.

“Belmont!” she shrieked, suddenly starting from that far-off dream, “Belmont, may God forgive you the deed I am about to do!”

Then falling on her knees, she clasped her trembling hands, murmuring a prayer for pardon and mercy. Now casting one long, shuddering look upon the cold, dark river, she was about to plunge therein, when a strong arm was thrown around her, and she was forcibly drawn back several feet from the verge on which she had stood poised.

“Wretched girl, what would you do!” said a voice in her ear.

She heard no more, for a faintness came over her, and but for the arm still around her, she would have fallen insensible to the ground. When she recovered, she found herself upon a bed in a small, neat apartment. A woman of mild countenance was leaning over her, chafing her hands and temples, and at the foot of the bed stood a gentleman dressed in deep mourning, with his full, dark eyes fixed upon her with pity and kindness.

“Poor child!” she heard the woman say, just as she opened her eyes; “I’ll warrant some of those gay gallants have broken her heart! Bless her, she is coming to—there, there darling, how does thee feel now?”

But ere poor Effie could reply, the gentleman placed his finger on his lips, as if to caution her from speaking, then preparing some soothing anodyne, he bade the woman administer it as quickly as possible, and promising to be back at an early hour in the morning, took leave.

When the morning came, however, the unfortunate girl was raving in all the delirium of fever, which for weeks baffled medical skill. Youth at length triumphed over disease, and she was once more able to leave her bed. During this time she had made known at intervals, her sad history to the good woman of the house, and the benevolent stranger who had snatched her from a watery grave.

Every where the latter sought to discover the perfidious Belmont, and on pursuing his inquiries for the grandparents of the wretched girl, he learned that grief at the desertion of their child, had broken the old people’s hearts; first the father, then the mother, had been borne to their long homes. A distant relative had seized upon the little homestead, and already a flaunting sign usurped the head of good old Penn, which for more than half a century had smiled benignly down upon travelers.

Effie begged to remain with Mrs. Wing, who kept a small thread and needle store in —— Lane, near the river; and the kind woman felt so much pity for her lonely, unprotected situation, that she readily granted her request. She was soon able to assist in the labors of the shop, and to make herself in many ways useful. Of the kind stranger she saw but little, but from Mrs. Wing she learned that he had generously defrayed all the expenses of her illness. He came but seldom, but when he did, he spoke to her so kindly, encouraged her with so much gentleness, soothing her sorrows, and leading her mind to that Higher source where alone she might look for comfort, that Effie regarded him in the light of a superior being.

Thus months rolled on, and no tidings of Belmont reached Effie. One morning, as she stood arranging a few fancy articles upon the broad window-seat in a manner which might display their beauty to the best advantage, she threw up the sash for a moment to inhale the fine breeze which came sweeping up from the river. The day was lovely. The gentle undulating surface of the Delaware, cleft by a hundred flashing oars, with the keels of many noble vessels buried in her sparkling tide, their white sails swelling to the breeze, stretched before her in beauty, while above, cloudless and serene was the blue vault of heaven.

A pleasure yacht had just neared the wharf, and from it a party of gentlemen sprung to land, and with rather boisterous mirth, crossed the street directly opposite where Effie still stood at the window. Suddenly her eyes rested upon one of that gay group, and for a moment it seemed as if breath and motion were suspended in the intensity of her gaze. She could not be mistaken—she knew she was not—it was Belmont, her husband; and scarcely knowing what she did, she rushed to the door, and with a wild scream of joy, threw herself upon the breast of Crayford.

“Ho, ho, Crayford, you are in luck, my boy!” shouted one of the party; “by Jove she’s an angel!”

Overwhelmed with confusion, and taken by surprise at the sudden appearance of one whom he had hoped never to see more, Crayford for half a minute stood irresolute, then struggling to disengage himself from her embrace, he exclaimed angrily,

“Off, woman—none of your tricks with me; off, I say!”

Casting roughly aside those tender arms which clung to him so despairingly, poor Effie would have fallen to the ground but for another of the party, who, seizing her just as she was sinking, cried with mock pathos,

“Here, pretty one, the fellow is a monster; here, I will take care of you—come, kiss me!”

But Effie sprung from his arms, and clasping the knees of Crayford as she saw the heartless wretch moving on,

“Belmont, my husband!” she cried, in tones of piercing anguish, “do not, O, do not leave me again; no, you will not be so cruel—take me with you!”

“That’s cool, by heavens!—ha! ha! ha!” shouted Crayford, with infernal daring, “you are crazy, child! I am not your Belmont; perhaps this is he—or this,” pointing from one to the other of his companions.

The look of wo with which the poor girl received this cruel speech, did not escape their notice, and, hardened as they were, they were moved to pity, and the rude jests died on their lips.

Effie rose from her knees, and tottering a step forward, placed her trembling hand upon the outstretched arm of Crayford. With an oath he spurned her from him, when in his path there suddenly arose one whose cold, searching glance, struck terror to his guilty soul.

“Crayford, I know you!” exclaimed the stranger. “This, then, is your infernal work; ay, tremble, thou base destroyer of innocence. Away, I say, ere I am tempted to do a deed shall shame my manhood!”

Livid with rage, Crayford drew a dirk from his bosom, and rushed suddenly upon the stranger; but in an instant it was wrenched from his hand, then seizing the wretch by the collar, as he would a dog, he hurled him off the curb-stone, and with such force, as sent him half across the street, and then lifting tenderly the form of the fainting girl in his arms, bore her into the house.

The reader will, of course, infer that Crayford and the stranger had met before. They had; nor was this the first dark deed to which the latter knew Crayford might lay claim.

To draw our long digression to a close, suffice it to say, that it was the unfortunate Effie Day whom Florence had met while walking with Crayford, and that the gentleman whom she had pointed out to him in the picture gallery, was no other than the stranger of whom we have just spoken, and whose appearance had so perceptibly agitated her companion.



We will now return to Florence, whom we left in a state of such cruel suspense, and it would be difficult to say, perhaps, which of the two at the moment she hoped to find the most sincere—Crayford or the unknown.

She felt she had gone too far to recede, and that it had now become her duty to probe this enigma thoroughly. Her confidence in Crayford was too much impaired for her to receive him again into her presence so long as such doubts hung around his character. “I will obey the instructions of this unknown Mentor,” said she, “it cannot be that he is false; no, to this Mrs. Belmont, then, will I go, and go alone.”

Ordering a carriage, therefore, and directing the driver to No. 7 —— Lane, she set forth upon an errand which, for a young, unprotected female, was certainly rather hazardous. Of its locality she had no knowledge; and when she found herself gradually approaching the opposite side of the city from her own residence, passing through narrow streets, and at every turning drawing nearer to the river, she would have felt more apprehension but for the words of the unknown: “Fear not,” urged the note, “one will be near you who will protect you with his life.” These words reassured her, for she had so long accustomed herself to regard him in the light of her protector and friend, that even now, when her doubts almost distracted her, she still gave herself up to the pleasing thought that he was near, and no danger could befall her.

“This is No. 7 —— Lane,” said the coachman, reining in his horses before the thread and needle store of Mrs. Wing, “whom shall I ask for?”

“Never mind, I will go in myself,” answered Florence.

Mrs. Wing was sitting in a little back room, but seeing a lady enter the shop, arose and came forward to the counter.

“Is there a Mrs. Belmont lodges here?” inquired Florence.

“There is a young woman of that name in my employ, friend—would thee like to see her? If thee does, thee can go to her room—she has been very ill.”

Florence bowing assent, the good woman led the way up a narrow staircase, and opened the door of a neat little chamber, saying, as she motioned Florence to go in,

“Here is a young woman to see thee, Effie,” then immediately withdrew.

Near the bed, in a large easy-chair, propped up by pillows, sat poor Effie Day. Not a tinge of the rose, once blooming so freshly there, could be traced on that pale cheek, and of the same marble hue were her lips and brow. These, contrasted by her jet-black hair, and eyes so large and brilliant, imparted a strange ghastliness to her appearance. At the first glance Florence recognized her as the young woman whom Crayford had pointed out to her as a fortune-teller.

This at once opened a new channel for thought, and supposing, therefore, that she had been directed thither for the purpose of consulting her art, she said, half timidly approaching her,

“Can you tell my fortune for me?”

Poor Effie, too, had recognized the lovely girl whom she had seen walking with him she still believed to be her husband, and looking up with a sad earnestness of expression, made answer,

“Your fortune! O, my beautiful young lady, may it never be so wretched as mine!” Then noticing the evident perturbation of Florence’s manner, she continued, “Can I serve you in any way?”

“I was sent to you for the purpose, as I suppose, of having my fortune told,” answered Florence.

“There is some mistake,” replied Effie, a half smile flitting over her pale face, “I am not a fortune-teller.”

“But I thought—I understood—that is—Mr. Crayford told me you were. Did I not meet you one day in Chestnut street?” asked Florence.

A faint color tinged the cheek of Effie, and her beautiful eyes drooped low as she answered,

“You did—too well do I remember it—you looking so happy, and I so sad! Yes, I saw you point me out to Belmont.”

Belmont! I know no such person,” said Florence, “it was Mr. Crayford who was with me—it was Mr. Crayford who told me you were a fortune-teller.”

“Did he—did he tell you so?” said Effie, bursting into tears, “for, alas! young lady, it was Belmont—it was my husband you were walking with!”

Your husband!” cried Florence, aghast.

“Yes, my husband. Dear young lady, think not I am mistaken—would that I were! I saw those eyes, so full of love, fixed on your blushing face—heard the soft tones of his voice as he bent low to address you. Yes, I saw all—heard all; and then, ah then!” cried Effie, with a shudder, and raising her tearful eyes to heaven, “what a look he cast upon me! But did he—did Belmont send you to me?” she eagerly demanded.

“No, he did not—it was another who directed me here. And now, my poor girl,” said Florence, drawing her chair close to Effie, and kindly taking her hand, “I see that you have been cruelly treated—will you then tell me your history—will you tell me of Crayford, or Belmont, for I now see they are one and the same.”

“Do you love him?” asked Effie, sadly.

“No, I do not love him, nor is it probable we shall ever meet again,” replied Florence.

“But he has sought your love—and yet you love him not—how strange! I love him! O, would to God I did not!” and here the poor girl sobbed aloud, while Florence, overcome by emotion, threw her arms around the unfortunate, and resting her head on her bosom, mingled tears with hers.

When both were a little more calm, Florence again urged her to reveal her sorrows, which Effie did in language so simple and earnest as carried conviction to the mind of her listener, who shuddered as the fearful abyss in which she had been so nearly lost, thus opened before her.

“And do you know the name of the person who has been so kind to you?” asked Florence, referring to the preserver of Effie.

“I know not,” answered Effie, “neither does Mrs. Wing, but to me, dear young lady, he has been an angel of goodness!”

“Strange!” thought Florence, “this benevolent stranger can surely be no other than my unknown friend. He is, then, all I first imagined him—kind, noble, disinterested—and yet I have doubted him; how am I reproved! but for him, my own fate might, perhaps, have resembled that of the unfortunate girl before me!”

While lost in these reflections, she was suddenly startled by a slight scream from Effie, who, grasping her arm tightly, said, while her pale face crimsoned, and her bosom heaved tumultuously,

“Hark! his voice—it is his voice!”

“Whose voice—what is the matter?” demanded Florence.

“Do you not know,” continued Effie, as half rising she bent her little head, and raised her finger in an attitude of deep attention, “Do you not know Belmont’s voice? Ah, I see now very well you do not love him.”

“Belmont! good heavens, what shall I do!” exclaimed Florence, starting up, “is there no way for me to escape—not for worlds would I have him find me here!”

“Go in there,” said Effie, pointing to a small door; “but you will be obliged to remain there—there is no other way.”

“Then I must, of course, hear all you say,” said Florence, shrinking instinctively from thus intruding upon the young girl’s privacy. Effie looked up confidently and answered,

“It is well; if this meeting is to restore me my happiness, you will rejoice with me; if it plunge me in still greater wo, then, dear lady, it is better for you to know it!”

Florence had no time to reply, for now a man’s step was heard quickly ascending the stairs. Springing into the little room adjoining, she closed the door, and panting with agitation, awaited the result. Again the words of the unknown recurred to her, “Fear not! one will be near you, who will protect you with his life.”

Scarcely had Florence withdrawn, when the other door was opened, and a man wearing a cloak, with his hat drawn far down over his face, entered, then closing it, and carefully turning the key, he advanced toward Effie, who had risen, and stood clinging to the easy-chair to support her trembling limbs.

“You are surprised to see me, I suppose, child,” said he, throwing off his cloak and hat, and revealing the form and features of Crayford.

“My dear husband, do we then meet again!” cried Effie, feebly extending her arms, as she sunk back into the chair.

Crayford folded his arms across his breast, and throwing himself carelessly upon a seat, said,

“I have come to settle matters with you, that’s all. What the d——l are you doing here!”

“Don’t speak so cruelly to me—don’t, Belmont!” cried poor Effie, bursting into tears. “O, if you knew the anguish I have endured since you left me; if you knew, that, driven to despair, I even sought to take my own life, you would pity me! If you knew how I have watched for you—sought for you—how I have waited for you, you would at least have compassion on me!”

“You’re a fool!” exclaimed Crayford, brutally. “Why I thought you would have learned better by this time; but since you have not, why you must not be in my way, that’s all. Now listen to me; you must go out of the city—and look you, on condition that you will never come back again, I will give you a thousand dollars; come, that’s generous, now—most men would let you go to the —— before they would do as much for you. The fact is, child, I am going to be married, and to a beautiful, rich lady.”

Married!” shrieked Effie, starting to her feet, and catching his arm, “married—am I not your wife?”

“Ha! ha! ha!—come, that’s a good one; not exactly, child, you are only my wife, pour passer le temps, as the French say. No, that was all a hoax—you are free, and with a thousand dollars to buy you a husband! Now is not that better?” said Crayford, chucking her under the chin.

Effie did not reply. It needed not—those eyes, more eloquent than words, fastened upon his guilty countenance, told plainly a villain’s work of wo wrought in her young, trusting heart. Crayford, hardened as he was, quailed under their reproach.

At length she spoke, but there was an unnatural calmness in her voice,

“Who is the lady you will marry?” she said.

“Well, I will tell you—and, by the way, you came near ruining my prospects there. She saw you in Chestnut street one day, as we were walking, and you looked so —— queer at me, that, faith, I were put to my trumps, and mumbled over something about your being a crazy fortune-teller—was not that well done?”

“It was well done,” answered Effie, in the same tone; “but her name—tell me her name.”

“Her name is May—a young, pretty widow; though, on my soul, Effie—why I declare, now I look at you, you are almost as handsome as ever; if it was not for her money, she might look further for a husband. But come, I am in a hurry; I want you to sign this paper, pledging yourself to leave the city never to return, upon which condition I also pledge myself to give you a thousand dollars—will you sign it?”

“I will,” answered Effie; “but I require a witness.”

“A witness—nonsense! well, bring up the old woman, then.”

“It is not necessary—here is one,” said Effie, advancing with a firm step to the inner door, and throwing it wide.

“Severe in youthful beauty,” Florence came forth.

Had a thunderbolt suddenly fallen from heaven, Crayford could not have been more paralyzed. Florence paused upon the threshold.

“Go!” said she, waving her hand, “go, Mr. Crayford, this innocent girl is under my protection. I have heard all—I know all—begone, sir!”

And, incapable of uttering one word, the guilty wretch, awed by the majesty of virtue, stole away as a fiend from the presence of an angel.

The over-tasked firmness of poor Effie now gave way; and piteous it was to witness the agony of her grief and shame.

“Poor, unhappy child!” cried Florence, taking her to her bosom, and tenderly soothing her, “you have been basely, cruelly dealt with! Heavens! I shudder when I think what my fate might have been but for this discovery!”

She remained some hours with the wretched girl, nor left her until she had become more tranquil, when, with the assurance that she would see her again in a very few days, she took an affectionate leave of poor Effie Day, and returned home.

I will state here that the mysterious friend of Florence May knew nothing of Crayford’s visit to the victim of his wiles. He merely intended that from the lips of Effie, she might learn his baseness. Her meeting with Crayford, therefore, was one of those singular coincidences which often startle even the most skeptical.

Florence returned home with feelings difficult to analyze. The interest with which the unknown had from the first inspired her, now suddenly acquired new strength. She had proved him to be the friend he professed, while his kindness to the unfortunate Effie (for she doubted not his individuality) was another proof of his excellence, showing that his goodness of heart did not confine itself alone to her welfare, which might be attributable, perhaps, to his avowed attachment, but could find its way to succor where’er distress or wretchedness dwelt. She felt this love and kindness merited return—and her heart timidly awarded it.

Selecting a beautiful emerald ring from her jewels, she enclosed it with the following note:

“Generous, noble friend, I have proved your assertions true. O, pardon my doubts! You have said you love me; will you then deem it bold in me if I acknowledge the interest with which you have inspired me. Yet you say we may never meet; why is this? Accept the enclosed, and with it the gratitude of Florence.”

“You then acknowledge an interest in me,” wrote the unknown, in reply. “Thanks, a thousand thanks. The time approaches when the barrier now existing may be removed, and then I may hope to win your love! Where, now, are those despairing thoughts which crushed me with their weight of wo; one kind word from you, and as the soft moonbeams dispel the blackness of night, they have fled, and around me is the light of joy—hope—happiness.”



Ten months a widow—was there ever such folly!

To be sure, much might be done in two more, if one earnestly set about it—for Florence had a pair of eyes, and a tongue might “call an angel down.”

Yet to those about her, she seemed more reckless of her fate than ever—going out but seldom, and scarcely allowing any gentleman to approach her presence.

The old housekeeper, who was strongly attached to her young mistress, had fretted and scolded to herself for weeks and months. The only time when she managed to preserve her equanimity, was when Crayford visited the house, for then she saw plainly an offer of marriage, and a wedding-party in the bottom of her tea-cup, while love-letters and kisses sparkled in the candle! But when, like all others, he was also dismissed, the poor soul could contain herself no longer, but breaking in abruptly upon Florence one morning, she thus began:

“Does thee know what month it is?”

“Yes, dear Mrs. Hicks,” answered Florence, raising her eyes from her painting.

“And does thee know that in two more thee has been a widow one year?”

“Alas, yes! but why—why, Mrs. Hicks, do you remind me of it?”

“Truly, child—has thee forgotten thee must marry!”

Must marry! O no, my good friend, not unless I please—and it is not my will to marry,” said Florence, smiling.

“Not thy will to marry!” exclaimed Mrs. Hicks, lifting up both hands; “and so thy will is to be poor!”

“Yes,” answered Florence, “if you call it being poor to be possessed of health and strength, added to three hundred dollars a year. Poor! why my dear Mrs. Hicks, I shall be rich—really rich!”

“Rich! Ah, thee talks like a simple child! What will thee do with thy health and strength and three hundred dollars!”

“O, much,” replied Florence. “With two hundred I can hire a neat little house—with the other I can furnish it comfortably, and with my health and strength I can teach music and painting; and, if you please, dear Mrs. Hicks, you shall live with me, and so shall poor Effie Day.”

“Child, thee knows nothing of life,” cried the good woman, wiping her eyes. “Verily, it makes my heart sad to see thee blindly throwing from thee the fortune that good old Abel May did give thee! Child, thee does not act in accordance with the wishes of that good man; for, truly, he did beseech thee to marry, that thee might retain the good gifts of the world!”

Florence threw her arms around the neck of the old lady.

“I thank you, dear Mrs. Hicks, for I know you mean all you have said for my good; but not to possess millions could I be tempted to barter my affections; and even if I loved, I would not marry within the prescribed year, when by remaining a widow, I can give to the relations of that excellent man, the fortune to which I have no claim, save in his kindness for one unfortunate. Could I have done so, I would long since have yielded up my rights.”

“Thee is a noble, good girl; and so long as these hands can work, they shall work for thee; but I am sorry, nevertheless, to see thee giving up to the lovers of Mammon what they have so long coveted. Verily it grieves me, too, that young Abel May does not return! Ah, child, child, I hope thee may never be sorry!” and affectionately kissing her young lady, Mrs. Hicks went back to her work, half pleased, half angry with the determination of Florence.

In the meantime, slowly, slowly, slowly, to the kindred of old Abel May, circled the twelve months, dating from the day of his death; suspiciously, anxiously, uneasily watching every movement of the young widow.

But joy, joy! The long looked-for morning at length dawned. To their eager gaze the sun seemed like a huge golden guinea, as he smiled from the eastern sky upon their hopes, and soft and silky as bank-note paper appeared the thin, vapory clouds floating o’er his path.

Again from marble-columned squares and by-lanes, from suburban cottages and distant villages they came, flocking in like vultures, all ready to pounce down upon the innocent little lamb whom old Abel May had sheltered in his bosom.

Nor were their torments ended here; even then a new fear seized upon them. Who knows what desperation might effect; the widow that very day might take it into her head to marry—they had no doubt she would.

Alas! each hour marking the twelve of that day of doom, was but a type of the preceding twelve month, which had finally brought around the joyful anniversary.

Midnight sounded. Hurra! hurra! The widow unmarried; and bright, sparkling dollars, like shooting stars, falling around them.

At twelve, M. precisely, the lawyers bowed themselves into the spacious parlor of the deceased, for it could no longer be called the widow’s, in order to read again the last will and testament.

Triumph sat again upon the countenances of those whom the occasion had called together, although some made most woful faces in trying to squeeze out a few tears, thinking it would be judicious to consider the old man as just dead. But Florence was as provokingly cheerful and handsome as ever—why one would have thought she was about to receive a fortune instead of losing one; and it even seemed as if she could hardly suppress her laughter as she glanced around at the expectant heirs.

The man of law at length drew forth the will with an emphatic “Hem,” premonitory.

Then on all sides there was a general stir; the gentlemen pulled up their shirt-collars and elongated their faces; the ladies smoothed down their mourning robes and held their handkerchiefs ready to receive a tear when occasion should call it forth.

The reading commenced, and all eyes turned exultingly upon Florence as these words sounded audibly:

“To my beloved wife, Florence, I do bequeath all my property, both personal and real, consisting of,” etc., etc., “provided that within one year from the day of my death she marries. But if, at the expiration of that time she still remain a widow, then I do annul my will in her favor, and do bequeath the same to my nephew, Abel May, provided he returns within the said year. If not, then unto those who can bring good proofs of their consanguinity to me, do I direct my property to be equally distributed. Always excepting an annuity of three hundred dollars, to be paid to my beloved wife, so long as she lives, etc.”


“Three hundred dollars!”

“An old fool!” echoed softly from lip to lip—the paltry sum already dashing their cup of joy.

“You have heard the will, ladies and gentlemen,” said the lawyer, addressing the company, “I believe Mrs. May acknowledges herself still a widow—will you signify the same, madam?”

Florence bowed.

“You observe, ladies and gentlemen, the lady admits herself a widow; then, of course, it only remains for me to announce young Abel May as sole heir to all the property, both personal and real, of which the testator died possessed.”

“But Abel May has not returned!” was the general exclamation.

“Abel May has returned—Abel May is here to claim his rights!” said the lawyer, screech owl that he was to their ears.

The folding doors were thrown open, and a gentleman slowly advanced within the circle.

Did Florence dream—was it no vision of her imagination! for as she looked upon the stranger, the same eyes she had seen so mournfully gazing upon her in the picture gallery, but which now, beaming with happiness, met hers, while upon his finger—a star of hope—glittered the emerald ring she had sent the unknown.

Slightly bowing to the astonished assembly, Abel May eagerly approached her. The happy girl looked up with a sweet smile as he drew near; what need of words, her beautiful eyes were far more eloquent, and with thrilling joy the young heir caught her to his bosom.

At first the discomfited relatives disputed the identity of the tall, elegant stranger, with the lad who so many years before went roving; but his proofs were indisputable. So out of the room, and out of the house, and back again to their homes, with unreplenished purses, they quickly dispersed.

It appears that young May returned only a few weeks subsequent to the death of his uncle from the East Indies, where he had accumulated a handsome fortune. By accident he saw Florence, and was deeply interested by her appearance. Aware that a lapse of so many years must have materially altered his person, he resolved to remain incognito. Frequent opportunities of seeing the young widow ripened the interest she had first inspired into affection. Yet he would not present himself to her notice amid the throng of fortune-hunters and idle flatterers who surrounded her. Rumor had made known to him the nature of the will, and he resolved to abide the year, taking upon himself, meanwhile, the pleasing office of acting as the protector and guide of the young, inexperienced widow. If, at the end of the year, she had so far evinced a soul above all sordid views as to remain unmarried, then, and not till then, would he seek to gain her love. With the fortune, however, which, in the event of her remaining single, would fall to him, he nobly resolved to have no share, and had therefore drawn up an instrument by which he relinquished all claim in favor of Florence, whether successful in obtaining her affection or not. This only awaited its proper time to be duly attested.

A year and a day brought results with which the reader is already acquainted, and a few weeks witnessed the happy union of Florence and young Abel May.

Under the roof of her benefactor and his lovely wife, the unfortunate Effie Day found a home and kind friends. Of Crayford nothing more was ever heard. It was supposed he had left the country for a field less obnoxious to the display of his peculiar attributes.





Fairest! Nature now is smiling, serene, lovely and beguiling,

    Let us to the sea shore stray,

Where are billows ever filing—wiling there our hours away

    Listening to the ocean’s thunder,

Gazing on the skies with wonder, wonder as each world we number

    Poised in space above.

Lo! Diana in her glory rising o’er yon promontory,

    Trace to earth the moon-beam’s flight,

Beauty to our planet lending, blending while they are descending

    With the sombre shades of night.

Tune thy lute, love, touch it idly, that the tones may echo wildly

    And sighs of softest passion move.






Major Anspach was an old gentleman who was as thin as he was long, nay, even thinner than he was long.

Forty years before the epoch when occurred, oh reader, the events we shall take the liberty to recount to you, the worthy major was the finest looking musqueteer in the regiment of Monsieur d’Artois. He possessed some fortune, belonged to one of the best families in Lorraine, could fence to admiration, and had a heart at the service of the fair sex. The ladies of the court and city, to whom a son of Mars is always irresistible, of course were not insensible to the attractions of a musqueteer of five feet eleven, and the major, on his part, was so gallant in his attentions to them, that his captain gave him the title of the Turenne of boudoirs.

But forty years leave some traces of their flight; Major Anspach in 1827 was the mere shadow of his former self, and retained of his vanished splendors only a scanty income of 800 livres, a pair of black plush pantaloons, a long snuff-colored overcoat, and a garret for which he paid forty crowns a year.

Notwithstanding this serious diminution of the means of happiness, the major, who was a widower, contrived to enjoy himself perfectly for at least six months in the year. How few persons do we see who can boast of being satisfied with their destiny one day out of two?

It is true that the moderate pleasures of Major Anspach did not materially encroach on his pocket, and for this we deem the cidevant musqueteer worthy of eulogium. He limited his enjoyments to a promenade in the Tuileries, each time that the sun deigned to shine on its precincts, happy alike when the Dog Star raged or under the frozen beams of a wintry sky. As this orb however rarely deigns to show us his face in unclouded brilliance, our old friend had made it his profound study to discover that part of the garden in which he could enjoy the rays of Phœbus without exposure to their intensity.

After much research and divers trials, the major at last made his choice. At the extremity of the terrace des Feuillants is a platform, embowered in trees and shrubs, which commands a view of the Place de la Concorde, and the architectural entrance to that part of the garden. A balustrade terminates this platform, and by a graceful sweep conducts you to a pleasant enclosure between the avenues and the western gate of the Tuileries. This turn in the balustrade forms then, as you will perceive, an acute angle with the line of the platform, and it is of the summit of this angle, whose sides are composed of two walls about twelve feet high, which form a fortified corner, that we are going to speak. Exposed to the rising sun, this spot (as the reader may ascertain for himself if he likes) seems expressly constructed in order to concentrate the greatest possible heat in the smallest space, which heat would indeed be insupportable were it not surrounded with flowering shrubs and thickets to render it agreeable to the frequenters of the place.

Major Anspach, for reasons pertaining a little to his plush inexpressibles, avoided all contact with the passing crowd; and although gazing with pleasure on the sports of the children who visited the garden, nothing would have annoyed him more than too close a proximity to the young rogues, or to the fresh and frisky damsels with laughing eyes who had charge of the juveniles. It was essential to his comfort, therefore, to select a position where he could see without being seen, and also that his seat should be of such narrow limits that when he once occupied it, no one could expect to share it with him.

This bench M. Anspach had at last discovered at the intersection of the balustrade and platform, between two hedges of woodbine and honeysuckle, shaded by the foliage of a noble tree, and fragrant with roses and jasmine. He could there bask in the morning sun, enjoy a refreshing breeze at noon, and in the evening luxuriate in the perfume exhaled from the flowers and shrubs. The place, however, was so narrow, and so completely buried in the surrounding foliage that, although, as we have before insinuated, our friend was the longest and thinnest of majors, he could not, without some trouble, ensconce himself within its limits, but, once seated, his angular figure so completely coincided with the geometrical accidences of the bench, that it was impossible for even a fly to find a resting-place beside him.

Established in his daily position, the view of the dazzling façade of the royal palace through the grove of venerable chestnut trees, would plunge the old man in retrospection of the gay scenes in which he had once been an actor, and it was these melancholy though pleasing reminiscences of the past, combined with the murmur of the lively crowd and the mingled perfume and beauty of the flowers and foliage, that rendered this spot a terrestrial paradise to the cidevant musqueteer.

And how does it happen, you ask, that this poor Major Anspach, who was really a gentleman and courtier at Versailles forty years ago, should now be reduced to seek a refuge from the sun, and from the inquisitive gaze that might have too closely peered into the mystery of his plush inexpressibles?

It was by one of those simple, unforeseen accidents, on which sometimes hangs the destiny of a life-time, and which, in the major’s case, occurred in this wise: One evening a celebrated belle, Mademoiselle Guimard, was so awkward as to drop her handkerchief; the consequence of which was that her friend fell from one trouble into another, until Fate landed him in his long snuff-colored overcoat and plush pantaloons on the bench which is the true subject of this remarkable history.



Mademoiselle Guimard having dropped her handkerchief, of the finest linen cambric, edged with Malines lace, and apparently embroidered by the hands of fairies, the Chevalier de Palissandre, an arrant fop, clothed in velvet, and an expert swordsman, conceived the impertinent idea of stooping to pick it up; but he did it so clumsily that he trod on the toe of Major Anspach, who was just then offering his arm to the lady—how inexcusable! Briefly they exchanged glances—bowed most politely—and the next morning went out to cut each other’s throats.

At day-break M. Anspach had his hair dressed, and attiring himself in the most elegant manner, drove in his carriage to the Porte Maillot, which was the place of rendezvous. He put 300,000 francs in gold in his carriage, that he might immediately leave the country for foreign lands, until the family of the chevalier had ceased to mourn his death, for you must know that the major had a certain trick in fencing that he considered sure, so that according to his belief the chevalier was as good as dead.

The thing succeeded as he had foreseen; they made some passes, and as soon as the major perceived that the chevalier was getting excited, he made such a furious thrust en tierce that M. Palissandre saw the flash and fell struck by the thunder.

It was hardly daylight, and M. Anspach was in such a hurry to get in his carriage that he made a mistake, and entering that of the chevalier, was many leagues distant ere he discovered his error, and it was then too late to return.

Arrived at London, he remembered that his banker could tell him what had become of his carriage, his 300,000 francs and the Chevalier de Palissandre. He wrote to him then, and took advantage of the opportunity to ask him to send funds, for after turning his pockets inside out he had only found a few Louis. He had to wait some time for an answer, and in promenading the Park to beguile the weary moments he fell in love with a young Creole from the Spanish West Indies. The lady was on the point of embarking for Havana, and as our heedless hero could not become accustomed to the climate nor the plum-pudding, he raised a thousand crowns on some diamonds he had with him, and borrowed a thousand Louis from a friend attached to the French embassy, whom he had fortunately encountered in the street; the next morning he embarked on the same vessel as the young Creole, and was on his way to the West Indies.

After arriving at the Havana he wrote again to his banker, asking anew for his carriage and the chevalier, and demanding money. But the vessel that carried his dispatches was apparently lost, for six months afterward, the major had spent his last doubloon, and was still expecting an answer from his agent; he was also terribly tired of his love affair. In this emergency he thought the best means to obtain information was to seek it in person, even at the risk of being arrested as a deserter from his regiment; he resolved, however, to be prudent, and to enter Paris incognito. He sold his wardrobe to pay for his passage, and landed without any misfortune, assuming the first name that occurred to him.

His friends who recognized him gave him a warm welcome, and informed him that his banker had left for America, carrying with him 500,000 francs, the price of an estate the major had sold the year previous. This new accident entirely disturbed his equanimity, as the above sum, with that lost in the carriage, comprised nearly all his fortune.

He had no resource but in the chevalier, but the chevalier he was told, after being an invalid for two weeks, had as soon as he was able to leave his bed started for London. The major, who inferred that the chevalier was anxious to return him his sword cut and his money, was touched even to tears by this generosity, and the next morning embarked for London in pursuit of his magnanimous foe.

Arrived at the great English metropolis, he ran to the embassy, visited all the hotels, explored Covent Garden and the Opera, searched the gambling-houses, the fencing-rooms, the coffee-houses—no chevalier! Finally he discovered by application to the firm of Ashburton & Co., bankers in the city, that the chevalier had departed three months before to the Havana. “Oh, the devil!” cried the disappointed major, “how cruel is Fortune. I would not return within reach of the claws of my Creole for all the treasures of the East. I will go to America and horsewhip that rascally banker—that will amuse me.”

This was certainly his most obvious course of proceeding, for as he had nothing left but a small income from a farm in the environs of Phalsbourg, it was better to run after 500,000 francs than 100,000 crowns. He therefore embarked for New Orleans, where his banker had sought refuge, and he succeeded in finding him, already penniless from speculating in public lands. The major felt the less remorse for cudgeling him soundly, and then not knowing what else to do, enrolled himself in the corps of M. Lafayette, to fight the English.

He evinced great bravery, and his career would doubtless have been brilliant had it not been for his unfortunate rencontre with M. de Palissandre, which, by rendering him a deserter, made him amenable at any time to the requisition of the Provost of Paris.

The American war terminated; the major found himself tolerably indebted to some generous friends who had divined his uncomfortable position. This circumstance recalled the missing carriage, money, and chevalier to his memory, and he accordingly wrote to the Havana for precise information. But the reply was that no one could be found answering the description of M. de Palissandre, and it was therefore probable he had died on the voyage out. The major almost resolved to hang himself.

On the other side, the payments from his farm had not reached him for some months, and the new aspect of affairs in 1789 did not inspire him with the desire of going in person to receive his arrears and to learn the cause of their non arrival, he could indeed nearly guess it.

His situation could not be more embarrassing, all things conspired to overwhelm him. “Is there not something incredible,” said he, one evening when seated on the Battery at New York, and in his excitement unconsciously speaking aloud, “is there not something incredible in my being the sport of such a destiny: that I should have been gallanting Mademoiselle Guimard, when the coquette dropped her handkerchief, and cost me a hundred thousand pounds, without mentioning my scrape with the government at Paris, and my debts that I cannot pay? Oh Fate! who can avert thy blows!”

At this moment some one tapped him on the shoulder.



“Friend,” said the new comer, “you appear overwhelmed with trouble. What can I do for you?”

“I will tell you, sir, what you can do,” said the major, haughtily drawing himself up; “you can take off your hat when you address me.”

“You are right,” replied the unknown, with a calm smile, removing his hat, “an honest man respects misfortune.”

“It is not my misfortunes, sir, but myself I insist on your respecting, when you do me the honor to speak to me.”

“You are French, sir.”

“A Frenchman and a nobleman.”

“You are mistaken.”

“What do you say, sir.”

“I say you cannot be a French nobleman, since there are no more noblemen in France.”

“I know not if there be any in France, but there is one here who will make you food for fishes.”

“You will not do it.”

“Do you mean that for a challenge?”

“Merely as advice. You are the cidevant Baron Anspach, of Phalsbourg, and you descend by the female line from the last Dukes of Lorraine. I know that, and I know also that your farm near Phalsbourg has been confiscated, because you emigrated; that you have no funds in France, and that you are there condemned to death.”

“I am obliged to you for the information, but I see nothing in it to prevent my pitching you into the water.”

“You may be right, sir; but even should you drown me, I do not perceive how it will improve your affairs. You will only have one friend less, and very certainly one misfortune more.”

“It appears, sir, that you have pretensions to wit.”

“I do not know which of us two has the most, sir; I, who would enlighten you on your situation, or you who would throw me into the river for offering you my assistance.”

“I am your debtor, sir, but a gentleman descended from the last Dukes of Lorraine cannot accept the offers of a stranger.”

“And from whom can you expect them here, if not from a stranger.”

“Permit me to inform you, sir, that no gentleman is reduced to humiliation who retains his sword.”

“Why, how would you use it?”

“To chastise the scoundrel who would insult me with his importunate pity, and then, rather than expose myself to repeated injury, thrust it through my own body.”

“You speak proudly; but acknowledge that you can do better than thus to insult God by disposing of the life of your fellow being and yourself. Are you sure there is no resource left you but suicide?”

“Yes. I have six Louis left.”

“Better than that, Major Anspach; there is a treasure in your reach.”

“Perhaps you mean wisdom?”

“No, but something that leads to it.”

“What then do you mean?”


“Ah, you are a moral reformer.”

“I am but an humble creature of God, major, whose consciousness of his fallibility has led him to pursue the useful conjoined to the good. But I have only discovered one resource that is alike beneficial to mind and body, to the one in this world, to the other in eternity.”

“And this thing,” said M. Anspach thoughtfully, “is labor?”

“Yes, sir, labor—man’s destiny since his creation.”

“Man—well, you are right, for being no longer a baron I am but a man. But what is your motive in this conversation? You have catechised me for an hour, as if I recognized your right to annoy me. Remember, sir, I do not even know your name.”

“That is not true.”

“Oh, the devil! take care; you shall not give me the lie twice.”

“Well,” said the unknown, smiling, “I am going to commit the offence for the third time, in repeating that you cannot be ignorant of my name.”

“Faith, sir, if you think your name of any importance, I do not prevent your telling it to me.”

“It was my intention to have done so just now, when I offered you my hand and my services. My name is Franklin.”

“Franklin! Ah, sir, what have I done! Can you ever pardon me? I throw myself at your feet.”

Mr. Franklin raised the major, laughing till the tears came into his eyes, and telling him that it was not the great man he imagined, as that luminary had ceased to enlighten the world two years before, but for want of a better he, George Steward Zachariah Franklin, of the firm of Franklin & Son, of New York, was at his service, and ready to give proofs of his identity to his worthy friend M. Anspach. He further explained, that it was on the recommendation of Lafayette himself, that he had sought him out; the latter on leaving America having related the major’s situation and adventures to him, and commended him to his attention. He added that if the major would do him the honor to dine with him, he would have the pleasure of submitting some propositions to him worthy of consideration.

Major Anspach, Baron of Phalsbourg, extended his hand to Mr. Franklin, and pledged himself to profit for the future by the lesson of wisdom so opportunely received. The banker pursued his advantage so well that three days later the major left for Canada, and three months afterward was superintending the labors of five hundred colonists, who, under his orders, cleared a forest of some eight square leagues.

M. Anspach lived happily in these solitudes for twenty-five years, laboring to introduce civilization into their savage recesses. It was a rude apprenticeship for the cidevant courtier, but it is due to truth to declare that as his fortune increased, the major had the good sense to forget, for the moment at least, that he was descended on the female side from the last Dukes of Lorraine, and having married the daughter of a rich farmer, he thanked Providence, whose inscrutable ways had led him to true happiness at more than 1500 leagues from the Opera. Unfortunately the major’s wife died after a brief illness, leaving no children, and the day after her death he received letters from France, apprising him of the return of the Bourbons. The devil then put it into his head to remember his barony of Phalsbourg and his regiment. He immediately sold his American property, realized his whole fortune, which was more than a million of dollars, and embarked on board the Neptune for Havre. The voyage was prosperous until within sight of the coast of Brittany, when a sudden tempest arose, drove the vessel on shore and completely wrecked her. Some passengers were saved, among whom was the major, who landed on the shores of France as poor as he had left them thirty years before.

The only hope left to him after this disaster was, that he should be favorably received at court; and although his views were, in many respects, much changed, he resolved nevertheless to present himself to the king, in whose guards he had formerly served. But, from his first appearance, he saw there was no room for delusive expectations. In fact the major was not what was then termed “a nobleman broken down by exile,” he had dared to be happy while monarchy suffered, and to enrich himself among republicans, while other men of quality were forced to ask credit from the butchers of Coblentz. They did not even take into account his recent misery, since it was owing to a fortuitous accident, and he was therefore coldly dismissed.

The major was too proud of his maternal descent to abase himself by servility. He sturdily turned his back on the Tuileries, and concentrated all his efforts toward reëstablishing himself in his farm at Phalsbourg. He partly succeeded in his object, but when he had paid the advocates, the solicitors, the bailiffs, and the court fees; when he had discharged the debts he owed to some old friends, he found himself the possessor of 800 francs a year and an extremely philosophical wardrobe. He did not complain, but resigned himself to the dictates of necessity; he reduced his desires to the compass of his means, his ambition vanished, his contentment increased, and the man of the American forests, the colonist, reappeared more worthy of esteem in the midst of poverty than when he was rich and powerful in those vast solitudes.

And this brings us back, dear reader, to the little bench so prettily hidden in the clustering jasmine and roses, last retreat, last enjoyment of the cidevant musqueteer, who ruined himself twice and became a sage because Mademoiselle Guimard dropped her handkerchief.

[Conclusion in our next.





Among the many beautiful country-seats which have, of late years, sprung up around us, there is no one perhaps that in architectural design, in compactness and elegance of finish, surpasses “Homewood,” the residence of the Hon. William Wilkins. Throughout all its parts, and in all its arrangements, it presents a chaste and highly tasteful appearance.

The name adopted is quite appropriate. The building stands in the centre of a nearly circular area, the circumference of which is bounded for acres back by the tall oaks of the primeval forest. In the summer, when the grass waves and the flowers unfold their fragrant treasures, this circular area presents to the eye the aspect of an island of verdure surrounded by the dim old trees. When evening approaches and the sun pours his slanting beams through the luxuriant foliage, bathing the boughs in liquid gold, no place can be more delightful than the “columned porch” at Homewood. The warbling of the birds, the fragrance of manifold flowers, the lowing of distant herds, the gentle rustling of the branches moved by the passing breeze, the shouts of the distant harvestmen preparing to leave, with the sun’s decline, their daily toil—all combine to lull the heart and to enchant the senses.

The approach is through a spacious avenue, curving as it nears the building, and crossing a little dingle, through which murmurs a gentle streamlet. The scenery is lovely, the soil fertile, the location airy and healthful.

The whole country around abounds in historic associations of the “olden time,” when the red man struggled against the advancing column of civilization. And what history has been unable rightfully to appropriate, legend and fiction have gathered up, and woven into dark and solemn drapery, wherewith they have clothed every prominent locality and invested every heroic character of those shadowy ages. Over these fields once roamed the Shawanese, who, driven from Florida, made their way to the head of the Ohio—a powerful, warlike, and restless tribe, who alone of all the Indians retained a tradition that their fathers had crossed the ocean. Not far off dwelt, for a time, a branch of the Lenni Lenape, who, in former days, had welcomed the Shawanese to their hunting-grounds. Tradition has it, that afterward the last mentioned tribe, forgetful of former kindness and hospitality, left their homes on the Ohio, crossed the Allegheny Mountains and fell by night upon the camps of the unsuspecting Lenape on the river Juniata, where they massacred many of them, and marched off with prisoners and plunder. Over these grounds, and up as far as the mouth of the Youghiogany, Queen Aliquippa, spoken of by Washington in his Journal, and visited by him in 1753, governed with rude and simple sway. Shingiss, King of the Delawares, the lover of Aliquippa, had the seat of his regal power near McKee’s Rocks, a little below Pittsburgh. He was young, generous and brave, and alliances with him were eagerly sought by both the French and the English. At the rustic court of Aliquippa, and one of her chief advisers, was Tonnaleuka, “prophet and medicine-man”—a solemn, mysterious personage, who sought, in caverns, to hold communion with the invisible world, and who laid claim to great knowledge in occult arts and mysterious rites.

At a distance of two or three miles from Homewood lies Braddock’s Field, on the bank of the Monongahela River—the theatre of one of the most prominent occurrences in our colonial history. The total defeat of General Braddock, on the 9th of July, 1755, caused an electric shock throughout the colonies, and occasioned profound grief and astonishment in the mother country. But on this field of death and defeat it was that Washington first gained a renown for wisdom and bravery which will be forever associated with his name. He was often heard to say that the most beautiful spectacle he had ever beheld, “was the display of the British troops on this eventful morning. Every man was dressed in full uniform; the soldiers were arrayed in columns and marched in exact order; the sun gleamed from their burnished arms, the river flowed tranquilly on one side, and the deep forest overshadowed them with solemn grandeur on the other. Officers and men were equally inspirited with cheering hopes and confident expectations.”

And yet ere the gloom of twilight had encircled the forest, more than half that brilliant army had fallen!

Among the many beautiful traditions relative to Washington, which have been handed down to our times, is one which rests on the authority of Dr. Craik, who, it appears, was the intimate friend of Washington from his boyhood to his death, and who was with him at Braddock’s defeat.

“Fifteen years after that event, they traveled together on an expedition to the western country, with a party of woodsmen, for the purpose of exploring wild lands. While near the junction of the Great Kenhawa and Ohio rivers, a company of Indians came to them with an interpreter, at the head of whom was an aged and venerable chief. This personage made known to them by the interpreter, that hearing Col. Washington was in that region, he had come a long way to visit him, adding that during the battle of the Monongahela he had singled him out as a conspicuous object; fired his rifle at him many times, and directed his young warriors to do the same, but to his utter astonishment none of their balls took effect. He was then persuaded that the youthful hero was under the special guardianship of the Great Spirit, (Manitou,) and ceased to fire at him any longer. He was now come to pay homage to the man who was the particular favorite of heaven, and who could never die in battle.”



The sinking sun streams through the trees,

  That form a circle there;

And fragrant is the gentle breeze

  With sweets from flow’rets rare.


It nestles in the ancient wood

  Where loved to couch the fawn,

Where oft the dark-browed hunter stood

  At break of early dawn.


These time-worn oaks might tell a tale

  Of struggles fierce and bold,

When on the hill and in the dale

  The tide of battle rolled.


The Shawanese on foeman’s trail

  No more bound free and light,

Nor cower to hear the moaning wail

  Of tempest-howling night.


From southern vales where Suwanee

  Rolls turbid to the tide,

They tracked the wand’ring Lenape

  Where northern waters glide.


And when night’s misty mantle fell

  On hill and dusky plain,

Dark Juniata’s shades could tell

  The number of the slain.


That race of bronze hath passed away,

  And all the forests broad,

That yielded to its warlike sway,

  Are now by strangers trod.


The blue-eyed Saxon plants his maize

  In peaceful furrows now,

And through the long, lone summer days

  He speeds the glist’ning plough.


O’er pastures white with sleeping flocks

  The night-winds gently sigh,

And fields arrayed in golden shocks

  In length’ning shadows lie.


The moon is up—and silv’ry beams

  Rest on the grassy mound,

Where Aliquippa’s spirit gleams

  Along the haunted ground.


They say that in her mystic walks,

  When night-dews wet the flowers,

The bright-robed Shingiss ever stalks

  With her through vernal bowers.


And Tonnaleuka, child of storm,

  Comes forth from cavern dark,

With magic zone bound round his form,

  And pouch with healing bark.


And where is she, the laughing maid,

  With tress of ebon hue,

Who tripped so blithely through the glade,

  Or sped the light canoe?


No sound is heard—no human voice

  Breaks through the stillness deep;

The twinkling stars, like saints, rejoice

  The ways of God to keep.


O’er Braddock’s Field the mist hath spread,

  The same as when of yore

It stretched its shroud above the dead

  Along the winding shore.


On nodding plume and polished lance

  The morn its glories threw,

But proudly waved the flag of France

  When stars looked on the dew.


Then loudly burst the conquering yell

  Upon the rippling stream,

While faintly rose, from distant dell,

  The wild bird’s lonely scream.


And when the drum had ceased to roll,

  And all the living fled,

The watching wolf from covert stole

  To feast upon the dead.


To far off climes that wail was borne,

  O’er waves by tempests tost,

And long did Albion’s daughters mourn

  The lovers they had lost.


Yet erring was the red man’s aim,

  Who oft, with leveled gun,

Had sought to rob the page of fame

  Of Freedom’s noblest son.


When years had fled, that chieftain frail

  Went far to see the man,

Who through the battle’s fiery hail,

  Had fought when Britons ran.


Full long he gazed upon the brow,

  And marked the placid eye,

Of him who, loved by Manitou,

  Could ne’er in battle die!


The chieftain old has gone to rest

  By Great Kenawa’s side,

Where th’ waving pine bends low its crest,

  And the shadows dimly glide.


Close by Potomac’s gentle wave,

  On Vernon’s slope of green,

The nation’s father found a grave.

  And there his tomb is seen.




’Twas fit that here, in forest shade,

  This tasteful home should rise,

Where honored age in peace might fade,

  Like sun in western skies.





[Illustrated with a View of the Head-Quarters of Gen. Knox, where the Council of War was held previous to the Battle.]

The battle of Trenton was the turning point of the War of Independence. For months before, the prospects of the Colonies had been darkening, and but for this bold stroke, would soon have set in gloom forever. A brief review of the condition of affairs is necessary to a just comprehension of the battle.

When, in March, 1776, the British found themselves compelled to evacuate Boston, they resolved to carry their arms into the Middle States, and there strike at the very heart of the nation. Accordingly, Sir William Howe, after recruiting his forces at Halifax, sailed for New York. On the 28th of August, at the head of an army twenty-four thousand strong, he defeated the Americans on Long Island; and, a few days subsequently, compelled them to abandon the city of New York. Washington now retreated to White Plains, where an ineffectual engagement followed. Soon Fort Washington, at the upper end of the island of Manhattan, was stormed and carried by the royalist troops. Finding it impossible to maintain his hold upon the Hudson, the American general determined to retreat across New Jersey; and accordingly, abandoning all his positions, hurried over the North River, the British following in quick pursuit.

Thus, within two months after the battle of Long Island, the cause of the Colonies sunk into almost hopeless ruin. The enthusiasm which accompanied the first outbreak at Lexington, had given way before the privations of a protracted contest; and the soldiers, who in 1775 had flocked unsolicited to the flag of their country, in 1776 turned a deaf ear to the bounty offered by Congress. In the army, the spirits of both officers and men were broken by a long series of disasters. Before the end of November the force of Washington, by loss in battle, by the expiration of enlistment, by desertion, and by other casualties, had dwindled down to a little over three thousand men. With this remnant of an army he retreated across New Jersey, hotly pursued by Cornwallis, at the head of twenty thousand well appointed troops; nor could he save himself from utter ruin except by throwing the Delaware between himself and his foe. On the 8th of December, he crossed that river, and, having destroyed the bridges behind him, gained a momentary respite.

To the eyes of nearly every man but the commander-in-chief, this momentary relief seemed only an interval of additional agony between the sentence and execution, for ultimate escape appeared impossible. The most sanguine believed that Philadelphia would fall before the month was out. Congress, which had been in session there, hurried off to Baltimore. Meantime, the British, in secure possession of New Jersey, issued a proclamation, requiring every inhabitant to lay down his arms and take the oath of allegiance; and hundreds, who had been among the most enthusiastic for resistance, but who now despaired of success, hastened to purchase mercy by a timely submission. Even gentlemen high in rank on the side of the Colonies wavered in their patriotism. The panic was universal. The hurricane seemed about to prostrate every thing before it.

In the gloom of this awful tempest, Washington, almost alone, stood unappalled. Not for one moment did his constancy forsake him. He saw the full peril of his situation; but he brought to it the resources of his mighty genius, and the unshaken resolution of his giant soul. Never, in any period of his life, was he greater than in this. No hint of submission crossed his mind. “If Philadelphia falls,” he said in public, “we must retreat to the Susquehanna, and thence, if necessary, beyond the Alleghenies.” From the moment he had crossed the Delaware, he had been revolving in his mind a plan to change, by one bold act, the whole aspect of the war. The British, instead of being concentrated in some central point, were scattered in detachments over New Jersey, a proceeding they had adopted for the convenience of forage, believing their enemy utterly powerless for aggressive measures. Washington resolved to take advantage of this error, and to strike at several of these detachments at once. He learned that fifteen hundred men, principally Hessians, were cantoned at Trenton, and that smaller bodies lay at Bordentown, Burlington, Mount Holly, and neighboring villages. To cut off one or all of these from the main army was his design.

It has been said, by more than one interested writer, that this masterly idea did not originate with Washington, but was suggested by others; and various officers have been named as the real authors of the plan. But the very number of the aspirants destroys the exclusive claims of each, and strengthens the notion that the manœuvre sprung from the commander-in-chief alone. The letters of Washington, for a fortnight before the battle, point to the great thought he was maturing in his mind. He was encouraged in his plan by the alacrity with which the Pennsylvania militia, under the command of General Cadwalader, began to turn out; and by the reflection that, unless some bold stroke was promptly hazarded, the spirits of the people would sink into hopeless despondency. Accordingly, he called a council of war, before which he laid his daring scheme. As absolute secrecy was necessary to the success of the enterprise, only the very highest officers were admitted to this assembly, which met at the head-quarters of Gen. Knox, in Upper Makefield, Bucks County, Pa. The house is, we believe, still standing, an antiquated dwelling of two stories, faithfully depicted in our engraving.

The House in which the Council of War was held previous to the Battle of Trenton.

Little did those who met at that council of war, though aware that mighty results hung upon their decision, imagine a tithe of the truth. They knew that the success or defeat of the Colonies might possibly be involved, but they could not penetrate the future, and foresee that the existence of the greatest and most enlightened republic that ever lived, depended on their conclusion. To their eyes it was chiefly a question of preserving their little army, or at most of protracting the contest into another campaign, that they might have the benefit of whatever chances should turn up. But in reality they were determining whether the great problem of man’s capacity for self-government should be tested or not—whether twenty millions of people, as we now are, or one hundred millions, as we will be by the close of the century, should rise into freemen, or sink into slaves. Under God, all the progress that liberty has made since that hour, here or abroad, may be traced to the resolution adopted in that council of war! That we are a free people; that our wide-spread territories are filled with prosperity and happiness; that the United States is looked to by the whole world as the Mecca of the oppressed; and that every breeze that blows from Europe brings sounds of falling thrones, and nations breaking the chains which have galled them for centuries—we owe to the determination of that little assembly to sustain their commander-in-chief. We can imagine when the council rose, that the angel who watched over the youth of our republic, and who had trembled for the result, clapped his hands for joy, and that the exultant sound, taken up by messenger after messenger, passed from hierarch to hierarch, until all heaven rang with the acclaim.

The plan, as finally determined on, was that Washington, with the continental troops, should cross the Delaware above Trenton, and move down to the attack of that town; while Ewing, crossing the river below, should make an assault simultaneously from the lower side. Meantime, Cadwalader, with a strong detachment of militia, crossing at Bristol, was, if possible, to carry the posts at Burlington and Mount Holly. The night of the 25th of December was chosen for the surprise, as it was supposed that the enemy, on that festive occasion, would be more or less off his guard. The weather had been unusually warm for the season, and there was no ice as yet in the river to impede the crossing. Every thing looked promising until within forty-eighty hours of the appointed time. Suddenly, at this crisis, the weather set in cold, so that the Delaware became full of floating ice, which rendered navigation almost impossible. Nevertheless, Washington determined to persist in his enterprise. Boats had been collected for the transportation of his own detachment, at McConkey’s Ferry, on the west side of the river, about eight miles above Trenton. An express was sent to Cadwalader to inform him the attempt would be made, and to command him to cross, if possible, at Bristol.

As soon as evening came, the continentals, twenty-four hundred in number, with a battery of twenty light field pieces, were put in motion, and marched to the ferry. It was a wild and threatening night. The wind howled ominously over the landscape; a few stars only were seen in the dark and troubled sky; and the ice in the river, grinding and splitting as the tide moved its huge masses one against another, filled the air with foreboding sounds. In vain, for awhile, the boats struggled in the current. Now locked in the arms of apparently immovable fields of ice, and now in peril from floating blocks that threatened to crush them, they were borne hither and thither, and with difficulty reached the shore, where new dangers awaited them in cakes of the frozen material, which pushed end-wise toward the bank, frequently overlapped and almost engulfed them. At one time it was feared that the artillery would have to be left behind. At last, however, after almost incredible exertions, the little army was ferried over, but the task, instead of being achieved at midnight, as had been intended, was not completed until three hours afterward. During the suspense of this awful night, Washington, who had crossed early, sat, it is said, on a bee-hive by the shore, wrapped in his cloak, and watching the struggling boats by the light of the few stars which broke here and there through the stormy rack of heaven.

Two principal roads led from the landing-place to Trenton. One, following the course of the river, entered the town at its lower extremity; the other, called the Pennington road, made a circuit into the interior, and struck Trenton at its upper end. Dividing his force, Washington took the latter route with one detachment, while Sullivan, with the other, pursued the river road. The instructions of the commander-in-chief to the latter general were to push on until he had reached Trenton, which he would probably be the first to do, as his route was the shortest, and there wait until he heard firing at the upper end of the town, when he was to attack at once. By thus assaulting the British simultaneously on both sides, Washington hoped, in conjunction with the surprise, to render them an easy prey.

The march had scarcely been renewed when the storm, which had been threatening all night, burst upon the army. The snow, at first coming in squalls, finally fell unintermittingly, accompanied occasionally with gusts of sleet and hail. The two divisions moved in company for nearly three miles before separating, and Sullivan, remarking that the wet might spoil the powder, asked his chief what was to be done in that emergency. “We must fight with the bayonet,” was Washington’s stern reply. The tempest now rapidly deepened. The thick-falling flakes nearly obscured the way; the cold became intense, and the wind, moaning across the landscape, seemed to wail over the approaching ruin of America. Many of the soldiers being scantily clothed, were soon wet through and almost frozen. Others had no shoes, and their feet, cut by the icy road, left at every step a mark of blood. History presents no parallel to that eventful march. When still some distance from Trenton, two of the Americans, exhausted and chilled, dropped from their ranks and died. Yet still the remainder toiled on. No martial fife was there, no banner flaunting on high, no squadrons of cavalry to guard their flanks with triple rows of steel; but in silence, like the Spartans bound to Thermopylæ, the little band pursued its way. The inhabitants of the farm-houses on the route, half waking from sleep, fancied for a moment there were strange sounds upon the breeze; but imagining that what they heard was but the intonation of the tempest, they turned and slept again, little thinking that the destinies of America quivered that hour in the balance.

The anxiety of Washington, during this protracted march, rose to the highest pitch. He was aware that if the attack failed, escape would be impossible, with the wintry Delaware behind him. In deciding on this bold move, he had staked not only his own life, but the existence of his army, and with it the question of submission and independence for his country, then and forever after. He had put every thing “at the hazard of a die.” Yet the flight of a single deserter, the accidental discharge of a musket, or the occurrence of any one of a dozen possible contingencies might destroy success entirely. As the gray dawn approached, and the vicinity of Trenton became apparent, his heart, usually so calm, beat with terrible suspense. He rode forward to the head of his troops. Just at this instant the outpost of the enemy loomed up in front; a challenge was heard—a hostile answer was given, and a musket flashed across the breaking day. Fired by the scene, and by the mighty responsibilities of the hour, Washington rose in his stirrups, and pointing ahead with his sword, exclaimed, in a voice husky with emotion, but in words that will ever be immortal, “Soldiers, now or never—this is our last chance.”

On the instant the men broke into a cheer, carried away by the enthusiasm of the moment, and returning the volley of the retreating guard, dashed forward in pursuit. The British kept up a desultory fire as they fled, dodging from house to house. At their head was a young officer, who courageously exhorted them to stand their ground, until a ball mortally wounding him, he fell in the road, when they precipitately retired. The Americans now saw, a little in advance, the houses of the town; heard the alarm which was calling the British soldiery together, and immediately after beheld the enemy endeavoring to form a battery across King street, directly in front. Not a moment was to be lost. Six of Knox’s pieces immediately galloped into position, and unlimbering, opened a destructive fire down the street. When this discharge was over, the advanced guard rushed forward, charged up to the muzzles of the enemy’s guns, sabered some of the artillerists who were about firing, and drove the rest away, and capturing the pieces, turned two of them on the flying foe. This occurred near where the feeder crosses the street. Having thus destroyed the outworks of the enemy, the successful assailants advanced down Queen street, extending toward the left, across the fields, so as to cut off the Hessians from retreating toward Princeton.

Meantime, all was terror and confusion among the enemy. The night had been one of festivity in Trenton, the soldiers being in the beer-shops carousing, and the officers indulging in mirth. Col. Rahl had been occupied all night in playing cards at head-quarters, a house belonging to Mr. Stacy Potts, and still standing near the head of Greene street. When the firing at the picket occurred, he stopped and listened. The sleet driving against the window-pane, for a moment deceived him. But when the rattle of the first volley came to his ears, flinging down his cards, he rushed to the door. Here, through the misty dawn, he beheld some Hessians running down the street toward him, with the cry that Washington, with his entire army, was upon them. At this Rahl shouted to arms. The drums beat. In an instant all Trenton was in a tumult. The privates rushed from their quarters, some with, some without arms; the officers were heard calling to the men, or seen endeavoring to form the ranks; and the inhabitants, roused from sleep, hurried to their windows, and looking out for an instant on the uproar, hastened to conceal themselves in the recesses of their dwellings.

The main division of the array had scarcely unlimbered its battery in King street, when the sound of firing from the lower extremity of the town, announced that Sullivan had reached his position. Not three minutes had elapsed between the time when the two divisions came into action. The knowledge that the enemy had been surprised in front and rear at once inspired the Americans with fresh ardor, and they charged down the two principal streets, King and Queen, with an impetuosity that broke through every attempt at resistance. In vain Rahl galloped to and fro rallying his men; in vain the subordinate officers exerted themselves; in vain the privates, ashamed to be conquered without a blow, endeavored to make a stand;—the enthusiasm of the assailants was irresistible, the Hessians everywhere gave way, and when Rahl soon after fell mortally wounded, his troops broke into ignominious flight. A few threw themselves into a stone mansion, where they were speedily forced to surrender. The remainder fled precipitately toward the Assinpink river, which flows along the lower end of the town. Here, some endeavoring to swim across were drowned or frozen to death; but the greater portion, hemmed in on one side by Washington, and on the other by Sullivan, and finding escape hopeless, laid down their arms.

The victory was complete. The whole force of the British at Trenton fell into the hands of Washington, except a body of 500 horse, which fled in the direction of Bordentown early in the action. Even these, however, would not have made good their escape, if Gen. Ewing, who was to have crossed below, had been able to effect his purpose. The number of prisoners actually captured was 909, of whom 23 were officers. About a thousand stand of arms fell into the hands of the victors. This glorious success was purchased without the loss of a man, except the two who died on the march; and but two officers, and a few privates were wounded. The Hessians lost 7 officers and nearly 30 men killed. As Washington rode over the field after the conflict, he found Rahl, lying in the snow, weltering in blood. The dying commander, supported by a file of sergeants, tendered his sword to the victor, and in broken accents seemed to implore clemency. The American chief, touched by the spectacle, ordered his own physician to attend the sufferer. But medical assistance was in vain. Rahl, on being carried back to his head-quarters, died soon after.

The entire British army, west of Princeton, would have fallen a prey to Washington, if Cadwalader and Ewing had been able to cross at their respective places; but neither effecting this, the posts at Bordentown, Burlington, and Mount Holly, escaped. Meantime, aware that the royal generals might concentrate their forces and cut off his retreat, Washington decided to re-cross the Delaware that very day with his prisoners. Accordingly, before night, the captured Hessians were transferred to Pennsylvania. The news of this great victory spread with inconceivable swiftness; but such was the opinion of British invincibility, that, at first, few persons could be found to believe the tale. Aware of the general incredulity, Washington hastened to dispatch his prisoners to Philadelphia, where, on the day succeeding the battle, they were paraded through the streets, to the amazement, not less than to the delight of the inhabitants. The effect of the victory on the country was electric. The charm of British invincibility was broken forever. Men no longer regarded the cause of the Colonies as hopeless, but, encouraged by this decisive success, looked forward confidently to a glorious issue. In a word, the battle of Trenton changed the wavering into friends; made those who had been hostile, neutral; and convinced the patriot that God was on his side, and that his country would yet be free.

The victory struck terror to the heart of the British army. Cornwallis, who was about to embark for Europe, abandoned his voyage in alarm, and hurried back from New York to assume command of the troops on the Delaware. His first step was to withdraw his forces from the exposed points, and concentrate them at Princeton and toward New Brunswick. Nor was this precaution idle. Washington, having recruited his troops, and being reinforced, crossed the Delaware again on the 30th of December, and took post at Trenton. To drive him from thence Cornwallis advanced from Princeton, and, on the 2nd of January, 1777, assaulted the American lines, established on the south side of the Assinpink. Three times he endeavored to carry the bridge which separated him from his foe, and three times he was repulsed. At last night put an end to the contest. In the darkness, Washington abandoning his position, marched on Princeton, intending to cut off the royal general from his communications. A battle ensued at this place, which was scarcely decided in favor of the Americans, when Cornwallis, hurrying up from Trenton, compelled the victors to draw off to the high grounds in the direction of Morristown. The British general, completely baffled, fell back to the Raritan, abandoning all his posts on the Delaware. The result of this splendid series of operations on the part of Washington was to deliver New Jersey from the enemy, in the short space of ten days. Thus, when supposed to be annihilated, the American general, like some fabled genius, had suddenly risen up, saved Philadelphia, recovered all he had lost in the preceding two months, and given an impetus to victory which never ceased until the red cross of Great Britain sunk into dust on the plains of Yorktown.

When hereafter the military genius of Washington is called in question, let the story of Trenton be remembered. Napoleon always spoke of this ten days’ campaign as one of the most able on record. Botta, the Italian historian, said of it, “Achievements so astonishing gained for the American commander a very great reputation, and were regarded with wonder by all nations, as well as by the Americans; every one applauded the prudence, the firmness, and the daring of Washington; all declared him the saviour of his country; all proclaimed him equal to the most renowned commanders of antiquity.”





They left their country with great regret, and I do not think they will ever be satisfied elsewhere. The men seemed moody, but occasionally uttered sentences in their own tongue with great feeling. The lamentations of the women Were pitiful to hear. (Extract from a Letter to the Secretary at War, in Relation to the Removal of the Seminoles.)

Moonlight plays on the waters and all silently they glide,

Though swiftly by a mighty ship that swingeth in their tide,

And the gentle winds of summer are bearing from the land

In whispering tones a sad farewell to an exiled band.


The perfume of the jasmine and the magnolia flowers

Mingles with the odors borne from distant orange bowers,

The music of the mock-bird’s song they hear across the deep,

Whose glassy ripples murmuring a cadence with it keep.


They know that at the morning sun the ship will spread its wing

And like a spirit hurry them from every cherished thing,

And therefore gaze they earnestly upon their native shore,

To write upon their memory scenes they will see no more.


They gaze upon the royal palm, around whose coronet,

Mingling with the moon-beams, the sunlight lingers yet,[1]

On the live-oak, with gnarled limbs all hidden by the moss,

Whose tresses in the summer wind like pennons twine and toss.


They gaze upon the silver strand of Holy Spirit’s Bay,[2]

They see the dolphins flinging up showers of starry spray,

They hear the Halcyon’s[3] wailing voice far out upon the sea,

Mournful as if it knew their grief and wailed for sympathy.


Oh! who can tell the agony that filled the bosoms then

Of mothers with their callow babes, the breasts of stalwort men,

As in the deep and mellow tones of the Muscogee tongue

A warrior o’er his nation’s fate a lament thus begun:


        Spirits of the red man’s heaven,[4]

        All my fathers e’er adored,

        Your might is gone, and other powers

        Are monarchs of our hills and lakes,

        Long ago, when yon old oaks

        Were but acorns on the ground,

        The Muscogee were mighty men,

        And by the distant Southern Sea

        Beat the island Carib back.

        Far away amid the hills

        Where wandered once the Cherokee

        They sung their song of victory.


        Streamlets born amid the hills

        Roll like old San Juan,[5] at last

        To lose them in the mighty sea.

        And thus it is with nations, too,

        Which hurry through their race and die.

        The Seminoles[6] met their fate,

        Fought as gallant men should fight

        Whom God has made the lords of lands

        As fair as were our own. ’Twas vain.


        Suwannee is desert now,

        ’Mid the murmur of its waves

        Naught but the scaly Albati[7]

        Is heard, and o’er Alachawa[8]

        Free and fearless bounds the deer;

        No fisher’s boat skims o’er the sea

        Around the island’s silver shore.

        We have lost our fathers’ home,

        Silently around their hearths,

        More lonely now than are their graves,

        Dim shadows stalk, and ask the gods

        Whither have their children fled.

        Hither will the white man come

        To herd his cattle in the glades

        Where happy villages once stood,

        And strew the ground he rests upon

        With mighty trees, which all who breathe

        Remember ever to have been

        The giant stocks which now they are.


        Warriors should brave and bear

        Grief a woman trembles at,

        But when they leave their native shore

        In fetters thus, the sternest hearts

        Will melt, and e’en a soldier’s eye

        Weep tears of bitter agony.


He ceased, and scarcely had the winds his accents borne away,

Than spoke out a young mother, on whose breast an infant lay;

Her very voice was melody, and she sung her boy to sleep

In tones whose earnest accent moved the listener to weep.


        My boy! my boy! thy father

          Is gone to the spirit-land,

        Where the pale-face cannot come,

          To dwell with the kindred band

        Of all the stout old chieftains

          Who ruled our race of yore,

        And hunted ’neath the dark pines

          We shall gaze upon no more.


        He sat within his wigwam,

          And thou wert on his knee,

        When first the rattle of the drum

          Rolled through our forests free;

        But he lies in the hammock

          With his face toward the stars,

        And wounds all red and gory

          In his breast, ’mid older scars.


        He did not die a coward,

          For oft his rifle rang,

        And twice amid the foemen

          The loud scalp-song he sang.

        And when the death-shot struck him,

          ’Twas from no ignoble hand,

        But came from e’en the bravest

          Of all the hostile band.


        I knew thou wert a chieftain,

          And amid my grief and pain

        I strove to train thee up to win

          Me vengeance for the slain.

        But now our might is broken,

          And we must leave his grave

        For a land lying far away

          Beyond the western wave.


        There thou may’st be happy—

          A wife as firm and true

        As I was to thy father

          Thy hunter’s bed may strew;

        But I will not see thee

          In thy father’s place, my son,

        Proudly wearing at thy knee

          Trophies thou hast won.


        There thou may’st be happy

          As here our people were,

        For it is a pleasant land,

          They call this scarce as fair.

        More blesséd than thy father,

          Thou may’st see thy children men,

        March with them to battle-fields

          And lead them home again.


        But I feel my heart is breaking,

          And in a little time

        I shall return where he is

          Beneath the shadowy pine;

        Yet if you wear the eagle plume

          I will see it, though unseen,

        And bless the new land in the west

          With its plains of living green.


Her woman wail was over, and silently they stood,

Until the deepening shadows hid the forest and the flood,

Then sunk they sadly on the deck, their breasts bereft of hope,

And the vessel bore them onward like an eagle in its scope.


This is not an unusual sight in Florida, where there is no twilight, and the eastern portion of the horizon becomes dark immediately after sunset. I remember once at Boca-Sornsota seeing the sun and moon’s light both distinctly marked on the crest of the huge palm which all who served at that post will recall.

Tampa Bay was called by the Spanish discoverers La Bahia del Espiritu Santo.

Halcyons—loons (?)

I may for aught I know violate in this Indian song all the regulations of metre and rhythm. I have however adopted the octosyllabic line with consonance, because it seemed to me not unlike the wild motive of the Indian chaunt.

San Juan, the great outlet of Lake George, is pronounced San Wan.

The Seminole were of the Muscogee race, and sometimes called themselves by the latter name.

Albati is the Muscogee name of the alligator.

Alachica, a great prairie north of the Suwannee, and pronounced Alachawa.








Mr. Merritt was seated by the centre-table in the back-parlor, as was his custom of an evening after the tea things had been cleared away, and around it were clustered his little family. His wife and daughter Emma, a blooming maiden of sixteen, were busy with their needles, and George, his only son, was diligently conning a lesson for the morrow, while a little cherub slept quietly in a willow cradle at the feet of the mother. Mr. Merritt was a home man, and he loved the quiet happiness which always dwelt there far better than the noisy revels of the club or the bar-room. Ah! were there more home husbands, how many firesides that have never known a smile would be lit up in brightness and sunshine! How many hearts now lone and desolate, would be made glad!

It was a winter evening, and the fire burned cheerily in the back parlor of the snug dwelling where lived Mr. Merritt. It was a New England home, and when we have said this, as much of comfort hath been conveyed as if a page had been devoted to the description.

Mr. Merritt was reading from the last Gazette one of those glowing paragraphs, in which the West was painted as a land flowing with milk and honey; the El Dorado where struggling poverty might riot in exhaustless riches; where broad acres of wealth could be purchased for a song; and, in short, where all the romantic visions of the most ardent adventurer would be eclipsed by the surpassing reality. Mr. Merritt had read articles of a similar tenor before; first, with indifference, but latterly with strong interest. He was becoming a little infected with the epidemic, which had already carried off several of his acquaintances, and being now suddenly involved in pecuniary difficulties, was almost persuaded to follow. As he laid down the newspaper he turned to his wife.

“Well, wife, what say you to going West in the spring? You know that my payments for Warden will oblige me to sell a part of my little property to meet them; would it not be better to dispose of the whole, and purchase a farm in Illinois, where, if the half that is told be true, we would be able to live comfortably and provide something handsome for our children.”

Mrs. Merritt glanced around the little group, and a tear trembled in her eye as it rested on the cradle. She was thinking of the tales she had heard, how sickness and death had smitten the hopes of fond parents who had emigrated to new countries, and how, before they had accumulated with much toil and privation, wherewithal to satisfy their desires, the climate had left for their children no wants, save a coffin and a grave. But she brushed the tear secretly away.

“Are you really serious,” said Mrs. Merritt, at length, “in wishing to give up New England forever?”

“Not exactly in wishing it, my dear,” returned Mr. Merritt, “but what is now a matter of choice may, ere long, be necessity. True, it would cost a severe trial to separate from the friends whom we have so long known and loved, and to exchange the delights of their society for a wilderness, but we would be together still.”

“And we are all the world to each other,” exclaimed his wife, forgetting her sadness for a moment, in the devotion which, twenty years after marriage, was rather strengthened than subdued.

“You leave Emma and me out of the question altogether, mother,” said little George, who, though apparently absorbed in his book, had been listening all the while.

“No, my love, you are both very dear to your parents;” and she bent over him and kissed his brow, the very image of his father’s.

“Forgive me, mother, I was only jesting,” returned George, quite grieved, yet wondering why his mother should have taken it so seriously.

“Are we surely going to live in Illinois, mother?” continued George, after a pause, “among the prairies and all? O how glad I shall be; I do want to see a prairie.”

“Why, George, don’t you care about leaving your schoolmates and playfellows?” asked his sister reproachfully.

“Oh, yes! I forgot, I shall be very sorry. I shall be sorrier though for poor William Warden. He will be so grieved when he hears that Emma is going away, and he will never see her any more.”

“Hush! young chatterbox,” retorted his sister, at the same time administering him a gentle admonition with her thimbled finger, and blushing scarlet.

The infant sleeper happened to wake up at this juncture, and made sundry noisy intimations from the cradle; otherwise Mrs. Merritt might have noticed the sudden expression of pain that passed over her husband’s features, at what George had said concerning William Warden.

As for Miss Emma, she hurried to the cradle on the first demonstration, and became completely wrapt in a lullaby, which she sung as earnestly as though George had made no revelation, and William Warden was all a fable.

Mr. Merritt resumed his newspaper, and George his lesson.




Mr. Merritt was a mechanic. By industry and perseverance he had gained step by step, until he was the possessor of a comfortable property. Mr. Warden, the merchant, had been his neighbor for several years, and was engaged in a flourishing business. Now Mr. Merritt being one of those amiable dispositions that could never say “No,” when asked a favor; it consequently happened that when Mr. Warden wanted a small discount at bank, and requested Mr. Merritt to lend his name, merely for form’s sake, as the laws of the institution required several signatures, (a very troublesome law, as Mr. Warden remarked, for it obliged him to tax the friendship of his neighbors, but he would be happy to reciprocate at any time that Mr. Merritt might wish an accommodation,) he, Mr. Merritt, signed it without hesitation—and not only one, but several.

The first note became due, and Mr. Warden paid it. The second matured, and in the mean time Mr. Warden’s speculations having failed, he was not in funds, and Mr. Merritt received a notice of protest.

It was then that Mr. Merritt began to reflect upon the possible consequences of lending a name. He urged Mr. Warden to make some arrangement by which he would be released from the indorsements. The merchant apologized to Mr. Merritt for the accidental protest, which had happened entirely through an error of the clerk’s in entering the note on his bill-book; that functionary having made it fall due about two weeks subsequent to its actual maturity; and therefore Mr. Warden had not prepared to meet it. He felt extremely pained, he said, that his valued and esteemed friend should doubt his solvency, or for an instant imagine him so base and devoid of honor as to involve him in loss, even though he should fail to meet other obligations. The mechanic was satisfied with this explanation, and regretted that he had spoken to Mr. Warden on the subject. But there came another protest, and others again in quick succession; and now Mr. Merritt felt real alarm. He saw the merchant once more, and begged of him security to the amount of his indorsements. Mr. Warden sincerely regretted that it was out of his power to do so, as he had just made a conveyance of all his effects to the bank!

The mechanic was thunderstruck. This was indeed a cruel blow. There was but one other indorser with Mr. Merritt, and they were on Warden’s paper for ten thousand dollars; one half of his all gone at a single stroke. Yet there are hundreds who, not knowing what they do, are every day lending their names for no better consideration, and are reaping the same bitter repentance as did Mr. Merritt.

This, then, was the situation of the mechanic at the opening of this history.




A month transpired, after the events narrated in the foregoing chapters, and all of Warden’s notes had been protested. It was impossible for Mr. Merritt to pay these heavy and unexpected demands without sacrificing his property, should he be pressed for immediate payment, and he resolved to call upon the bank attorney, with the faint hope of obtaining an extension; or, at least, prevailing upon that officer to save him the disastrous expenses of a suit.

Poor Mr. Merritt! He was entirely unacquainted with the tender mercies of banks and bank attorneys, or he would have prepared himself for the worst. Neither did he know that, of all bank attorneys, he could not have fallen into more evil hands than Isaac Rock, Esq., Counsellor-at-Law and Notary Public.

In person Esquire Rock was broad-shouldered, and rather short and clumsy than otherwise; his features hard and forbidding. His heart, if he had one, was steel, and he prided himself more upon his firmness than upon any other of his numerous high qualities. Tears, prayers and entreaties were alike wasted upon him. Indeed, were not that old saying, “hard as a rock,” of greater antiquity than any date to which Esquire Rock could lay claim, it would undoubtedly have passed into a proverb from his day henceforth.

Whilst this attorney entertained a most unmitigated contempt for the victims of poverty and misfortune, he had a profound and exalted sense of his own individual consequence, and delighted to witness the cringing spirit and suppliant knee of the awe-stricken subjects of his power. Whosoever committed a sin against the dignity of Esquire Rock was straightway an outlaw beyond all hope of forgiveness; and wo be to him thus sinning, who should fall into the gripe of the attorney. Besides all these qualifications, however, Esquire Rock had a careful eye upon his temporal interests, and could manage a case in a way to swell his legal perquisites, to an amount at once the envy and admiration of the whole brotherhood.

Esquire Rock was fumbling over a miscellaneous collection of manuscripts one morning, when a rap was heard at the office door.

“Come in,” said the attorney, settling back in his chair.

The visiter opened the door at this invitation, and advanced.

“Is Esquire Rock within?” he inquired.

“I am Esquire Rock,” answered that personage haughtily. “Be seated, sir. Business with me, sir?”

“My name is Merritt, sir. I am indorser with John Fields on Warden’s notes, and have called⁠—”

“Yes, I know it,” interrupted the attorney, a scarcely perceptible, though dangerous smile playing upon his features—“and you will have them to pay.”

“I am aware that Mr. Warden has failed, but it will be impossible for me to pay the amount at present, and I have called to beg a little indulgence. Five thousand dollars is a large sum to raise, especially by a humble mechanic.”

“You have property, Mr. Merritt.”

“I have some property, Esquire Rock, but were I forced to sell immediately, it would bring but a fraction of its real value.”

“The law must take its course, sir,” said the attorney, decidedly; and he looked at Mr. Merritt, then at the door.

The mechanic understood the hint, and when he met the attorney’s glance, he saw no hope there.

“I had thought,” said he, “that the manner in which I became involved in this misfortune would entitle me to some slight favor at your hands—to a trifling delay by which I might avoid total ruin; but I perceive I am mistaken in looking for mercy here,” he added, bitterly.

Esquire Rock was utterly confounded at the man’s audacity. A poor mechanic to beard him—Isaac Rock, Esquire, counsellor at law, and notary public! The thing was unprecedented.

You thought!” exclaimed he, as soon as he had recovered sufficiently to reply. “Do you understand law, sir? You have no right to think, sir. The majesty of the law is trampled under foot when mechanics are permitted to think⁠—”

“Or asses to practice at the bar,” retorted Mr. Merritt, indignantly, turning to depart.

The fiery furnace of the attorney’s rage threatened to consume him at this new and flagrant act of daring; and he was driven to disclose a secret, which he had intended to hold in suspension, like the sword of Democles, over his victim. He called to Mr. Merritt.

“Come back, Mr. Merritt; let me give you a little further light upon this case.” Esquire Rock’s manner had undergone a sudden change, which puzzled the mechanic exceedingly, as he obeyed the summons. All traces of wrath had vanished, and he received the mechanic with something of the air of complacency, with which an epicure might be supposed to contemplate the preparations for an extensive feast.

“Do you know John Fields, Mr. Merritt?” he inquired.

“I do not—but Mr. Warden told me that he was a wealthy cousin of his, living at Salem. Do you know him, sir?”

The attorney’s face lighted up with the same curious smile that had before accompanied the mention of that indorser’s name.

“Yes, Mr. Merritt, John Fields is a distant relative of the celebrated John Smith, an imaginary being, as I have ascertained, who lends his name for the accommodation of such of his friends as want a discount. The name is not worth one copper, Mr. Merritt, and therefore we shall make the money out of you. We will have an execution out shortly for ten thousand dollars and the costs, which will be a thousand more, or it shall be my fault. What think you of that, Mr. Merritt?” he continued, watching the effects of the development with intense pleasure.

Alas! it was too true. Mr. Warden had been in the habit of conforming to the rules of the bank, by furnishing fictitious indorsers to the requisite number; a harmless evasion, which the president readily winked at, in consideration of a trifling token of good will, provided always, that Warden obtained one genuine and responsible name in addition to his own.

Mr. Merritt was so utterly stupefied at this new intelligence of treachery, that he walked off mechanically, without answering a word. Esquire Rock gazed after him until he was gone; when he again returned to his papers, muttering aloud, “chew that awhile, Mr. Merritt—asses practice at the bar, do they?”




Mr. Merritt had nearly reached his dwelling before he recovered from the confusion into which his faculties had been thrown by the astounding intelligence conveyed by the attorney. As he now gazed upon his peaceful home, it seemed more beautiful than ever. Alas! it could be his no longer. The savings of long years—the earnings of days and nights of hard toil, so carefully husbanded—the little luxuries that had been done without—the self-denials that had been practiced—the privations undergone, to gather a substance which should soothe life’s decline—all, all gone at a single blow, swept away forever! How could he impart the dreadful news to his wife! How could he endure to meet the companion of his bosom and his darling family, plunged, through his own imprudence, (he felt,) into hopeless want. “She shall be happy a little longer,” thought he, and retraced his steps to his shop.

Mr. Merritt did not, as usual, go home to dinner on that day, but remained in his shop, hour after hour, absorbed in deep and bitter thought.

“Can there be no law to punish such monstrous corruption?” said he to himself, as he closed the shop for the night. Here again Mr. Merritt displayed his ignorance, in supposing that men in high places could be called to account for mere trifles like this. In fact, he did not know how very seldom law means justice, when wealth and station are placed at the bar for trial, or he would have spared himself the question. He walked slowly homeward, endeavoring as much as possible to compose his agitated spirits for the scene which he knew awaited him.

The eye of love is keen of penetration, and Mrs. Merritt discovered as soon as the mechanic entered the cottage that all was not right. Knowing of his intended visit to the attorney, her imagination pictured a thousand causes of alarm, and overcome by contending emotions, she threw herself upon his neck, bursting into a flood of tears.

“Speak, my dear husband,” she cried. “I see from your pallid face and bloodless lips, that some new and dreadful calamity has befallen us. O reveal it all to me, I can bear any thing save my fears.”

“Concealment would be useless,” said the mechanic, “for you must know it sooner or later. Endeavor to compose yourself, dearest, things are not as bad as you apprehend. To see you thus is a severer pang than I have encountered before. Wife, we are only—beggars!”

Mr. Merritt, with astonishing calmness, proceeded to relate his interview with Esquire Rock, and its results, nearly as we have narrated them in the last chapter.

With what keen delight would the bank attorney have looked upon that scene of anguish and despair.

The first paroxysms over, Mrs. Merritt became more calm, and listened attentively to the end. That day of gloom was closed by fervent supplication to the High Source of all hope and consolation, for strength and support against the tempest that awaited them.




In due time Mr. Merritt’s effects were levied upon, and advertised for sale. When it was known that he was ruined, envy and jealousy triumphed, and the vile tongue of slander was unloosed upon his reputation. People who had envied his prosperity heretofore, gloried in his ruin. It descended even to the children, and a stout, malicious boy, threatened to whip George the very next time he went to school. So certain is misfortune to meet with taunt and insult every where.

During this period, so fruitful of evil to the Merritt family, young Warden, though before a frequent visiter, did not cross their threshold. Emma could not help wondering where he had gone, or why he had not said good-bye, or whether he had really forgotten her.

Emma was returning from an afternoon visit, some half mile from her father’s, and with a view to escape observation, she turned down a by-path, and walked slowly homeward. Soon she heard the sound of approaching footsteps, and she felt a strange and unaccountable agitation, although she neither turned her head nor quickened her pace. They came near, and a voice called, “Emma?”

It was no stranger’s voice that brought the blood rushing unbidden to that fair girl’s cheek. William Warden was at her side.

Emma, a little piqued by his long absence, could not resist playing the woman, and she drew herself up rather coldly, “Good evening, Mr. Warden.”

This was the first time she had called him Mr. Warden. It had always been William, before.

“Emma—Miss Merritt, I mean—I have no right to call you Emma, now; the man who has involved you in ruin, and wrecked the prospects of your dearest friends, is my father; and I feel that you hate and despise me. I cannot endure this disgrace, and am about to leave for another country, where the shame of my father will not be known, and where the dishonor attached to his name will not hang like a mill-stone around my neck, paralyzing all my efforts to rise to respectability and honor. But I could not leave you forever without seeing you once more, and for this opportunity I have watched long and anxiously. I dared not offend your father with my presence under his roof.”

Emma’s resolution about the little womanly display of temper suddenly vanished, her warm heart softened, and was throbbing in sympathy, ere the first tones of Warden’s musical voice died away.

“O no, William, he does not blame you!” she exclaimed, with tearful eyes, “indeed he does not. He knows you for all that is generous and good.”

“And have not you blamed me?”

“I, William—no, never! O, William, how could you accuse me thus?”

“Bless you for these kind words, Emma, they inspire me with new hopes. And now, Emma, as we must soon part, perhaps forever, tell me, if these things had never happened, if my father had still continued in prosperity, and free from the crime which makes his name odious to your ear, could you have loved me, then, Emma—would you, Emma?”

Emma answered not loud, but the gentle whisper reached the ear of love, and William Warden sealed it in a long, burning kiss upon her glowing lips. They were happy.

“Farewell, dearest Emma, we meet again,” was all he said, and when she looked up William Warden was gone.




There are hearts among the rich and powerful—and would to God they were more numerous—whose pulses flow in kindly sympathy for the distresses of their fellow-creatures, and whose wealth ever ministers to the necessities of the children of sorrow. Such have their reward, more glorious than the laurels which deck the conqueror’s brow—the blessings, prayers, and outpourings of the grateful spirit.

To the extent of their means, Mr. Merritt and his family had always aided the poor and needy; and they were not now deserted in their affliction.

Every nerve had been strained to avert the threatening storm; but all in vain. Stricken and depressed, the mechanic sunk down in despair. Not a ray of hope pierced the blackness of the future. His all would not pay the execution and costs of sale, and there followed, for himself, a prison—for his family, starvation. Wise counsellors had been consulted, and they decided that there was no proof of fraud which could invalidate the claim. No law could set it aside. The bank attorney already saw his victim wasting in the cold cell of a debtor’s jail and exulted in his heart.

But as the darkest hour is that which ushers in the dawn, so, in this hour of trial, when the clouds lowered thick and heavily—a friendly helper came. One, who had been rescued years before, by Mr. Merritt’s own bounty, from poverty and degradation, and by his aid had commenced a career which secured him fortune and prosperity, heard of the troubles of his benefactor, and hastened to his relief. With the delicacy of true benevolence, this gentleman set about his excellent mission, in a way to be of effectual benefit to Mr. Merritt, while it relieved him of the oppressive sense of obligation, which is often made to accompany good deeds, but which more surely crushes the proud spirit than would the miseries they seek to alleviate.

From this gentleman the mechanic received the following letter by post:

G——, March 10, 183-.

“Mr. Merritt,—Dear Sir,—I have had it some time in view to purchase property in your village, whenever a favorable opportunity should occur. I learn by the newspapers, that your real estate will soon be sold on execution, and it being the most desirable situation with which I am acquainted, I am anxious to buy it. As it will be out of my power to attend the sale, (if you have not made other arrangements,) please write me by return mail, what will be the sum of execution and costs, and if not more than the fair value of the property, I will advance the amount, and close the bargain at once.

“Your obedient servant,

“G—— S——.”

The early and important services which he had rendered to the writer of this letter were dismissed from the memory of Mr. Merritt, with the ordinary events of the time at which they were conferred. The latter had, not long after, removed to another town, and they had not met since.

The letter was a business-like document, as we have seen—containing no allusions to the past—breathing no professions of gratitude—proffering no gifts of charity; yet it exerted a happier influence in cheering the mechanic, than though every line had been teeming with protestations of pity and regard. It came like a messenger of life, and bade him hope. First, he read it silently—then aloud—then to his wife—then Emma and George participated in the joyous news; and the infant, receiving an unusual number of kisses, no doubt understood it too.

An answer was forwarded by the ensuing mail, setting forth the circumstances of the case—the amount required to free the estate from incumbrance—and further, stating that this was five hundred dollars less than the assessed valuation of the property at the annual appraisement—that he considered it worth one thousand dollars more than that appraisement; but, in consequence of the forced sale, he expected to lose that much, or more; and therefore, as he was obliged to sell, would be glad to have him take the property and redeem the execution.

After this was dispatched, their fears regained the ascendency. They had been, perhaps, too sanguine, the price might be considered too high—and all was anxiety, perplexity and dread, until the close of a week, when there came the following reply:

G——, April 2, 183-.

“Mr. Merritt—Dear Sir,—Your favor, in answer to inquiries contained in my letter of 10th ult., came duly to hand. I think the property sufficiently reasonable at your valuation, and have no wish to take advantage of your pecuniary embarrassments to obtain a reduction of price. Therefore, if you please, you will consider me the purchaser. The enclosed check for eleven thousand dollars will release the estate from the execution, and the remainder I will pay as soon as the necessary titles are perfected. I have appointed Mr. —— my agent in the matter, who will attend to their arrangement.

“Your obedient servant,

“G—— S——.”

When Mr. Merritt took this last letter from the post-office, he determined to take it home and open it there. But his anxiety proved too great, and the seal was broken. The check came first in sight, and he panted for breath. He read on, quickening his pace more and more, until he arrived at home, almost on a full run.

“Thank God! we are free!” he exclaimed. “Wife, read this.”

She did read it to the end. The day had dawned, and the bright sun of hope shone once more. What a happy family was Mr. Merritt’s! Free from debt! They did not forget, in the fullness of their joy, to assemble around the family altar, and pour forth fervent thanksgiving to the Hand which had supported them through tribulation, and had brought them succor when there was none to help.

On the next morning, to the utter dismay of the bank attorney, Mr. Merritt walked into his office, and demanded the execution, at the same time presenting the money.

Choking with rage and surprise, the attorney gazed first at the money, and thence at the mechanic, and proceeded to an iron closet, which he opened, and brought out the notes. Mr. Merritt paid them every one, and with an air of mingled triumph and scorn, bade Esquire Rock a good morning, and left the office. That gentleman’s wrath broke out afresh when he was again alone, and he occasionally muttered aloud, “The scoundrel! I could have killed him!” and no doubt he spoke truly.




After many consultations and long reflection, Mr. Merritt decided to emigrate to the West. Though repeatedly urged by the new purchaser to remain for a time at his old home, he refused, being determined, as he said, to try farming, and the new country.

About two months after the sale, Mr. Merritt received the last instalment of the purchase-money; and having parted with such of his household goods as would be unnecessary where he was going—save a few dear old pieces of furniture, which they could not bear to give up—he had nearly two thousand dollars to invest in lands.

With many tears they parted from one old friend and another, and lingered affectionately around every familiar object, until no more excuses could be framed for delay—and at length commenced their journey. Emma would have given the world to have seen William Warden once more; but he had left the village, and gone, no one knew whither. Little George, notwithstanding his curiosity to see a prairie, had his sorrows too, and wept as though his heart would break. The infant was the only one who had no regrets for their old home.




Illinois—as every traveler in the Great West knows—abounds in prairies, many of them of great extent. Among them all, however, there are none so large and varied as La Prairie, so called, which stretches from the Mississippi River more than a hundred miles into the interior. Now, it spreads to the horizon’s verge a vast level, carpeted, in the spring-time, with luxuriant verdure, amid which are scattered myriads of beautiful wild flowers—anon, the surface slopes in gentle undulations, rising higher as you proceed, until they become romantic and broken, dividing into hills and ridges, while clear and sparkling rivulets flow down the valleys between. Here and there the eye rests upon an oasis of timber, covering a few acres, and again the traveler scans the field of vision in vain for a single tree or shrub to relieve the wearisome monotony of space. Although the soil is rich, and easy of cultivation, the extreme scarcity of timber has deterred the emigrant from its occupation, and, save a few settlements in the neighborhood of these timber-groves, La Prairie is to this day the same solitude as when the buffalo fed in its green pastures, undisturbed by the ride of the pale-faced hunter.

Having an opportunity of buying an improvement in one of these beautiful groves, at a trifling advance from the government price, Mr. Merritt selected it for his home. They named it Elmwood, and Selkirk, in the South American isle, was not more isolated from his race than were the mechanic and his little family in their new abode.

The limits of this history will not allow us to detail the many ingenious devices that were of necessity resorted to, or the ludicrous contrivances of Mr. Merritt in the way of carpentry, or the substitutes adopted for the thousand conveniences they had always been used to, and never knew the value of before; but suffice it to say, the mechanic labored earnestly in his new vocation, and succeeded in planting acres sufficient to insure a plentiful provision for his little flock.




The second summer had nearly passed away, when sickness visited Elmwood. Mr. Merritt was prostrated by a violent fever. Early and late his wife watched by his bed. Sleep was a stranger to her eyes. Agonizing prayers ascended in petition for his recovery. At last they were heard. Slowly the sick man improved, and after many weeks, was able to breathe the fresh air, and walk abroad.

Then, the dear little prattler, the youngest child, drooped. The petted one lay helpless in its willow cradle, and pale and anxious faces gathered around it. Eyes, red with weeping, witnessed its struggles. Several days it lingered after hope had fled the broken-hearted mourners, and then the little sufferer was called in its pure, unspotted innocence, to Heaven!




A short time after Mr. Merritt settled at Elmwood, a small village sprung up about twenty miles distant, on the edge of the prairie; and, as the country filled up beyond, it was made the county-seat; and a store or two being established there, it became quite a market-place for the farmers on the prairie.

On a cold morning in January of the third winter of his residence at Elmwood, Mr. Merritt, having some business which called him to the village, Miss Emma improved the opportunity to accompany him, for the purpose of exercising her taste in the purchase of a few articles from the store. The snow was too thin for sleighing, and the wagon was therefore rigged with two chairs and a cloak, together with a buffalo robe for the feet; and, all things being ready, they set off in high spirits.

Emma succeeded to her utmost satisfaction in cheapening and securing the requisite bargains, and was ready to return, long before her father had completed his share of the business of the day. It was nearly night, and she was quite out of patience, when Mr. Merritt drove up with the one-horse wagon, to convey them homeward.

“I am afraid you will have a storm, sir,” said the polite shopkeeper, bowing a farewell, and glancing at the clouds.

“I hope not before we reach Elmwood,” replied Mr. Merritt, returning the salutation, and applying the whip. He cast an anxious eye overhead, and applied the whip more vigorously.

Dark clouds had gradually overspread the sky, and were thickening every moment, while an occasional gust sweeping along the prairie, gave evident manifestation of an approaching storm. They had not gone half the distance, when a feathery snow-flake floated slowly down, and then another, and another. Now they came thicker and faster, and the darkness increased so much, that Mr. Merritt could hardly discern the road.

“Emma, dearest, wrap your cloak closely, it will be very cold,” said he, urging his horse to greater speed.

“I am very comfortable, now, father,” returned Emma; “are we not nearly home?”

“I hope that we may be, for it will be a dreadful night.”

As the night set in, the wind increased. The snow had hitherto fallen gently, but now it was driven into their faces by the gale, and almost blinded them. It grew colder, too, very rapidly, and the mechanic’s fingers could hardly grasp the lines. Still he continued to ply the whip, and they rolled on at a gallop.

“Emma, can you see a light?—we should be near Elmwood.”

“No, father, I can see nothing.”

Again they hurried on.

“Look all around you, Emma,” said her father, anxiously; “we must certainly be nearly home.”

She strained her eyes in every direction, but no light was visible.

A dreadful thought flashed upon him then. He stopped his horse, leaped from the wagon, and bent his eyes close to the ground.

“O my God!” he exclaimed, in agony, “we have lost the road!”

The storm howled in fury—the track was entirely covered with snow—to go forward was uncertainty—to return would be folly—to remain, was to perish. What man, how stout-hearted soever he might be, would not have quailed at such a prospect.

“What shall we do, father? I am very cold;” said Emma, faintly.

“Heaven only can preserve us, my dear Emma. Take this buffalo, I do not need it,” said the kind father, carefully wrapping the fur robe to shield her tender frame from the storm, while an involuntary shivering through his system evinced the extent of his self-denial.

After an earnest invocation to Heaven, in silent petition, for their preservation, he resolved to go forward, and leave the result with Providence.

“Are you warm enough, Emma?” said her father, after a pause.

“I am not cold now, father, but I am so sleepy.”

“My child, exert yourself—do not sleep!” said the mechanic, in alarm—“it is death!”

As he spoke, a dull, heavy sound was borne along the gale. Mr. Merritt listened. It was not the wind. Another report was heard.

“’Tis a gun!” he exclaimed. “Heaven be praised! it is a gun from Elmwood!” He turned his horse’s head in the direction of the sound. A third time the report was heard, evidently nearer. Soon a faint glare was visible, which continued to increase as they approached. There stood his dwelling, with every window brilliantly illuminated; and just as he reached the house, the door was opened, and George appeared with the gun, which he was about to fire again, when he saw them.

“Mother, they’ve come!” he shouted, “and this in honor of their return,” he added, blazing away, and almost thrown on his back by the recoil a moment after.

The mother was at the door ere he had finished. Mr. Merritt was so stiffened and benumbed with cold that he descended from the wagon with difficulty to meet the warm embrace of his wife; but Emma sat still nor spoke. She was asleep. At this discovery, the excitement and alarm of the mechanic seemed to endow him with superhuman strength, and lifting her as if she had been an infant, he hurried into the house with his lifeless burden, and laid her upon a couch. With frantic energy they applied the restoratives at command—and they were blessed. Her eyes opened slowly, and she attempted to speak.

“The crisis is past, and our Emma is preserved!” exclaimed Mrs. Merritt, clasping her hands together in joyful thanksgiving.

Emma was soon entirely recovered, but the careful mother forbade exertion, and with her own hands prepared and brought a nice cordial to her daughter’s bed, under the soothing influence of which she ere long sunk into pleasant and refreshing slumbers.

Mrs. Merritt, while supper progressed, was relating to the mechanic the anxiety she had felt for their safety when night came on, and he had not returned; and how George had suggested the thought of firing the gun, which had led to their preservation, when a loud knock was heard at the door. George opened it, and a stranger entered, muffled to the eyes in a capacious cloak, which was almost concealed by a covering of snow.

“Can a traveler find shelter with you to-night?” asked the new comer, who appeared to be a young man.

“God forbid that we should drive a human being from our roof on such a night as this,” said Mr. Merritt. “Sir, you are quite welcome to the best we have to offer.”

The traveler expressed his thanks, and divested of his cloak, exposed the features of a handsome young man, of apparently not more than two-and-twenty years.

A sudden exclamation burst simultaneously from the lips of Mr. and Mrs. Merritt.

“William Warden!” It was he.

“You recognize me, I see,” said Warden, “although three years have changed me somewhat;” and he continued, “will you, Mr. Merritt, for the moment, forget that I am the son of my father, and accord to me the welcome of a stranger?”

The mechanic evidently struggled with bitter recollections, but subduing them, offered his hand calmly to Mr. Warden. “You are my guest, Mr. Warden,” said he, “and as such, are not the less entitled to my hospitality that you are the son of one who has done cruel wrong to me and mine.”

“But not irretrievable wrong, thank Heaven!” replied young Warden. “The son shall expiate the crimes of the father. To-morrow, Mr. Merritt—to-morrow shall be the dawn of a happier day.”

Mr. Merritt made no reply. Warden did not resume the subject, and they sat some time in silence. William had frequently glanced around the room since his entrance, and his countenance now assumed a perplexed and anxious expression. There was one missing, of whom he wished, yet feared to know. At length he mustered sufficient courage to inquire in as indifferent a tone as he could assume, “Where is Miss Emma?”

Mrs. Merritt then recounted the history of Emma’s trip to the village, and her narrow escape from a dreadful death on the prairies, and how the firing had been the means of their rescue; to all of which he listened with intense interest. He, too, had heard the gun, and been saved by it from a similar fate.

On the next morning Emma was quite herself again. She had not heard of the traveler’s arrival, and when she came into the breakfast-room and saw William Warden, she almost fainted. The tell-tale blood, which had at first retreated, now crimsoned her cheek—and William himself seemed to have caught the contagion, for his face was all on fire. They shook hands as composedly as possible under the circumstances, and succeeded in exchanging a few interrogatories without betraying the secret agitation of their hearts to the eye of the mechanic. If William had loved Emma at sixteen, how much more worthy of his love did she now appear. She had grown taller, and every childish grace had matured into beautiful womanhood. The climate had tinged her complexion with the slightest possible brown, and her plain western dress fitted her charming figure so well, that he would not have exchanged it for the richest robe that ever decked a haughty ball-room belle.

William, too, how vastly he was improved. Three years had transformed the slight stripling into the form of manly beauty; and his eyes beamed with the intelligence of superior intellect. Emma thought him even handsomer than ever.

After breakfast was over, Mr. Merritt and young Warden walked out together, and when the latter returned to the house, he found Emma alone. He approached the fair girl, and his voice trembled as he spoke.

“Emma,” said William, “have you forgotten our last parting yet. O, Emma, the words you then whispered in my ear have sustained and encouraged me since that day; and the hope of one day being worthy of you, and repairing the injury done to your father, has borne me onward and upward over difficulties of every kind, until at last I am here to remind you of your promise. ‘I will be yours, and yours only, William,’ you said; and now, dearest Emma, I have just explained all to your father, who will not withhold his blessing, and it needs but your confirmation to seal my happiness forever.”

The happy girl did not withhold it.




“Have you heard the news about Mr. Merritt?” said a young lady, to an acquaintance, whom she was honoring with a morning call.

“No, I have not; what about him?”

“Why, you know that Mr. Warden ruined him, and his property was sold to a gentleman in ——, and the mechanic and his family moved to the West. This was about three years ago. Well, Mr. Warden’s son was violently in love with Mr. Merritt’s daughter, Emma; a fine looking fellow he was, too; and he felt so terribly about his father’s failure, that he immediately left the village; and where should he go, accidentally, but to the very man who purchased Mr. Merritt’s property, and who employed him as a clerk. He happened to suit his employer exactly—for, as I said before, he is a fine looking fellow—and somehow or other he found out lately that young Warden was so much attached to Mr. Merritt’s Emma; and what does he do but give William a deed in full of all the property, and resigned business in his favor, then sends him off to Illinois, to marry the daughter, and bring back the whole family to their old home. And, sure enough, last night they came, bag and baggage, and have commenced housekeeping already. Young Warden and his wife, are the handsomest couple I ever saw. I hear that they are to give a party to their old friends as soon as they are settled.”

TO MY SISTER E . . . . A.




Sweet sister, at this twilight hour,

  While sings the bird her evening lay,

And gentle dews refresh each flower

  That drooped beneath the noontide ray;

While cool, soft breezes play around,

  And gently fan my burning brow,

Falling with sweet and soothing sound

  Upon my ear like music now;

While trembling there in yonder sky

  That little star looks down on me,

I’ll wipe the tear-drops from my eye,

  And trill a simple song for thee.


My heart is full, oh, sister dear,

  Of tender thoughts of one whose love

No longer lights our pathway here,

  But purer glows in worlds above;

And though a year has almost flown

  Since we have laid her down to rest,

To-night her form sat by my own,

  Her lips upon my brow were pressed;

Her low, sweet voice was in my ear,

  Entranced I listened to each word,

So soft, so silvery, and so clear,

  As ne’er from mortal lips was heard!


With glowing eye she talked with me

  Of our own happy childhood’s hours,

When hand in hand we sisters three

  With chainless footsteps sought the flowers;

Or sat beneath the forest trees,

  Upon some green and mossy bed,

While, stirred by the low, murmuring breeze,

  The leaves made music overhead;

While on the gentle summer air

  The birds poured forth their thrilling song,

Till every green leaf waving there

  Seemed the sweet echoes to prolong.


She spoke to me of girlhood’s days,

  When we had hopes unmixed with fears,

Ere we had learned the world’s cold ways,

  And smiles were ours undimmed by tears;

When life seemed like a long, bright dream,

  Our spirits buoyant as the air,

And looking o’er life’s gentle stream,

  Thought not that rocks lay hidden there;

While onward, onward lightly sped

  Our little barks adown the river,

Trusting the sunbeams overhead

  Would keep the waters bright forever.


She talked with me of riper years,

  When time less lightly speeded by,

And, seen through nature’s flowing tears,

  The rainbow spanned a clouded sky;

Some of our brightest dreams had flown,

  And that strange lyre, the human heart,

Awoke a deeper, sadder tone,

  That things so lovely should depart;

And while we could not stay the tear,

  To think those cloudless days were o’er,

A sad voice whispered in our ear,

  They’ll come no more—they’ll come no more!


They’ll come no more, oh, sister mine,

  Those sunny hours that we have known,

But shall we murmur, or repine,

  So many blessings still our own?

True, clouds have gathered on our way,

  Deep shadows round about us lie,

But waiting for a brighter day,

  Upward we’ll look with steadfast eye;

And as we linger round the tomb

  Of one whom our warm hearts held dear,

Sweet voices will dispel the gloom⁠—

  She is not here—she is not here!





“You look sober this morning,” said I to my neighbor Lincoln one day. “What’s the matter? Any thing wrong?”

“No; I can’t exactly say that,” he replied, with unusual gravity.

“You look as if you were under a mountain of trouble.”

“Do I?” And he made an attempt to laugh; but it was not entirely successful.

“I’m only a little worried just now; but it will pass off,” he added. “I get into these states sometimes—periodically, I might say.”

“Ah, I understand. Imaginary troubles.”

“Oh no,” he quickly replied. “Not just that. There is something like real flesh and blood about the matter. The fact is, to come out plain, Mrs. Lincoln, in her over-kindness, has presented me with another baby.”

“And you are so unreasonable as to grumble about it! You don’t deserve to have blessings.”

“There is such a thing as being blessed to death, you know,” said Mr. Lincoln, smiling; but the smile was still, as they say, on the wrong side of his mouth. “Five babies were enough, in all conscience, without adding a sixth. It was as much as I could do to get bread for what I had.”

“He who sends the mouths will send the bread. Never fear for that.”

“I know. This general trust in Providence is all well enough. But it takes more mental stamina than I possess to bring it down into particular applications. My faith isn’t overly strong. If I were worth a hundred thousand dollars, the babies might come as fast as they liked. I wouldn’t call a baker’s dozen too many. No. I like babies; bless their hearts! but I like them properly cared for. If I live, I suppose all will be well enough. But life is held by the most uncertain tenure. Upon my daily exertions depend the sustenance of my family. If I were to die my wife and children would be in a sad way.”

“Get your life insured,” said I promptly.

Lincoln shook his head and looked grave.

“Why not?”

“Shouldn’t like to do that.” His face became still more serious.

“Any particular objection?”

“It looks like running in the face of Providence. I should feel as if I were signing my death warrant.”

“That’s a strange notion.”

“It’s just as I feel. I’ve thought about it a number of times. But it seems to me that life is too serious a thing to be placed on a common level with a house or a ship. In putting a money-value upon his earthly existence, it seems to me that the Divine Being would be outraged, and visit the mercenary offender with death as a judgment.”

“You have a strange idea of the Divine Being,” said I, evincing surprise in turn. “In getting your life insured, would you purpose evil to your neighbor?”

“No; but rather good. I would seek, in doing so, not only to keep my wife and children from becoming a burden upon others, but to secure to them those worldly advantages so necessary to the healthy development of mind and body.”

“And do you think a merciful God would visit you, vindictively, for acting with such an unselfish purpose in your mind? How strange must be your notion of Him who is represented to us as being in his very nature love! Now, we know that love seeks to impart a blessing to all—not a curse.”

“But there is such a thing as running in the face of Providence, and this life insurance has always struck me as being something of the kind.”

“What do you mean by running in the face of Providence?”

“Doing something in order to counteract the Divine purpose.”

“Do you know the Divine purpose in regard to yourself?”

“No; of course not.”

“Then, how can you, knowingly, do any thing to counteract that purpose?”

“I can’t, knowingly; but I may do so ignorantly.”

“Then you think that the Lord sometimes punishes men for acts innocently done?”

“Such an idea has been in my mind. Man is responsible for his acts, and should, therefore, be very guarded about what he does. His ignorance will not always excuse him.”

“Suppose your child were to do something wrong, yet you had the clearest evidence in your mind that his intentions were good, and not evil; would you punish him?”


“Why not?”

“I would regard his intentions.”

“Because they made the quality of the act so far as he was concerned?”


“Will you make God less reasonable, considerate, and just than yourself? Does not He also regard the motives which influence his children?”

“Why—yes—I suppose He does. But—we ought to be very sure that our motives are right.”

“I grant you that, with all my heart. We must take care that we are not consenting to the death of the saints, under the mad hallucination that we are doing God’s service. But, with reason and revelation for our guide, we need not be in much fear of going wrong.”

“No; I suppose not. Still, I can’t get away from the idea suggested. I feel as if to insure my life would be trifling with a solemn matter.”

“And that life might fail you in consequence?”

“Such is the impression, I must confess.”

“You must, then, think that the providence in regard to the time of a man’s death is arbitrary and capricious?”

“I don’t understand much about the matter; and my very ignorance makes me fearful,” replied Mr. Lincoln.

“It must be plain to you, on reflection,” said I, “that, in a matter so important as the fixing of a man’s eternal state by death, the divine wisdom and mercy of the Lord must be exercised in a most perfect manner, so to speak. That, in fact, no one is called to pass from a natural into a spiritual state of existence, except at the time when such a change will be best for him. The mere circumstance of making an insurance upon the life, with a view to providing for those left behind, who would, perhaps, suffer great evils but for such a provision, could not precipitate this time; for the act could not foreclose a man’s state and prevent his further regeneration.”

Lincoln admitted that there was some force in this view, but said he could not see the subject clearly, and was afraid to act in the matter.

Six months afterward, on meeting my neighbor, his serious face induced me to ask after the cause of his trouble.

“Worried about my affairs, as usual,” said he. “The fact is, I have but little peace of mind. Every thing is so uncertain. By this time I ought to have had a neat little property laid up, but am not worth a copper. My family has increased so rapidly, that it has taken every thing I could make to feed and clothe them. If I were certain of living, I would not feel troubled; for I can earn a comfortable support. But no man has a lease of his life. It makes me heart-sick to think of the consequences if I were to die. What would become of my wife and children! I have not a cent to leave them.”

“Why don’t you get your life insured? Take out a policy of five thousand dollars, for, say seven years. It will cost you only about ninety dollars a year; and you can easily save that much from your income by a little extra economy. Your mind would then be comparatively easy.”

“Five thousand dollars would be a nice little sum to leave,” said Mr. Lincoln, “and would help a great deal.”

“You could pay the premium easily enough?”

“Oh yes.”

“Then make the insurance by all means.”

“I have thought of it several times since we conversed on the subject; but some how or other have put it off from time to time. I must do so no longer. My doubts as to the propriety of life insurance, which I expressed some time ago, I do not feel as strongly as then. I thought a good deal of what you said, and came to the conclusion that your views were pretty nearly correct.”

“Life is uncertain. We can only call the present our own. Be wise, then, and make this provision for your family.”

“I must do it,” said Lincoln, as he left me.

“Have you effected that insurance yet?” said I to him a few months afterward.

“No, I have not,” he replied, “but I must do it. The fact is, when it comes to the pinch, the amount of premium is something. A man hasn’t always got ninety dollars to spare.”

“True. But didn’t I see a new sofa and a set of mahogany chairs going into your house a week or two ago?”


“And they cost, no doubt, a hundred dollars.”

“Just that.”

“Would it not have been wiser—”

“I know what you would say,” interrupted Lincoln. “Yes, it would have been wiser. The possession of a policy for five thousand dollars would give me a far greater pleasure than I have yet derived from looking at or sitting upon my new chairs and sofa. The old ones were comfortable enough.”

“Don’t put it off any longer. Better take out a policy for two thousand five hundred now, if the amount of premium is an object, and another policy for a like sum in two or three months.”

“I’ll do that,” said he, speaking earnestly.

We parted. A month or two afterward, I alluded to the matter again. The insurance had not been made, and Lincoln seemed a little annoyed at my reference to the subject. After that I avoided any further remark touching the advantages of life insurance when in company with Lincoln. But I never met his wife, a fragile looking creature, that I did not feel an emotion of pain at the thought of her being left destitute, with six children clinging to her for support.

Nearly a year elapsed from the time of my last reference to the subject of life insurance, when news came to the city that, while bathing on the sea-shore, Lincoln had been drowned. The sad event was made sadder in my mind, as my thoughts turned, involuntarily, to his wife and children, left without a protector and provider. What were they to do? Lincoln had been engaged in the business of a real estate broker. At his death, there was no estate to settle up—no store to sell out—few if any debts to collect. The office would be closed, and the income cease.

“Poor woman! what is she to do?” said I to myself a dozen times in the first hour that elapsed after I had heard the afflictive news. “Without fifty dollars in the world, probably, besides furniture and clothing, how is she to maintain, by her own unaided exertions, a family of six children?”

So much was I afflicted by the occurrence, that I could not sleep for some hours after retiring to bed in the evening.

On the next morning the newspapers contained a notice of the accident, with this announcement:

“We are happy to state, that a few days before leaving for the sea-shore, Mr. Lincoln had his life insured in the Girard Life Insurance and Trust Company, for five thousand dollars.”

I was so much affected in reading this, that my hands trembled, and the paper dropped from them to the floor.

Some years have elapsed since the occurrence of this sad event. Almost daily I pass a small store in a well frequented street, behind the counter of which is sometimes seen the widow of Mr. Lincoln, or a daughter who has attained the age of fourteen years. The face of the former has a sober, quiet look, but bears no evidence of distressing care. Under the advice and assistance of friends, four thousand dollars of the money received at the death of her husband, were safely invested in six per cent. securities, and with the balance, a small store was stocked with goods. The interest on four thousand dollars paid her rent, and the profits on her little business enabled her to meet the real wants of her family.

How different would all have been but for this life insurance.





I stand upon the sacred hill

  Where Liberty hath made her home.

’Tis midnight, all is hushed and still

  Where’er my footsteps roam;

While towering through the air of night

  Yon stately pile doth rear its head,

A granite flower, of giant height,

  Sprung from the dust of Patriots dead!


Methinks I hear the rustling sound

  Of myriad angels’ hovering wings,

Who guard this famed, enchanted ground,

  Around which Romance clings!

Like those that o’er gray Marathon

  Are hovering in the night’s still noon,

Spirits descend and stand upon

  This hill when clouds obscure the moon!


Beneath me sleeps the city dim,

  Whose dusky spires tower on high,

And white-winged vessels slowly skim

  Yon river winding by.

The wandering night-winds round me moan,

  And for that day of glory sigh,

When Freedom’s star in splendor shone

  Through the torn clouds in War’s dark sky!


Where now the men that nobly dealt

  A nation’s wrath upon the foe,

And for their injured country felt

  Their cheeks indignant glow?

Alas! they all have passed away,

  Like stars that leave the sky at morn,

When in the east the king of day

  On couch of gilded clouds is born!


And silence reigns where’er I tread,

  Like that which greets the passer-by

In that lone city of the dead

  ’Neath Egypt’s brazen sky!

Brave men are sleeping everywhere,

  Their ashes hallow every strand,

And this lone hill-top has its share,

  On which in musing mood I stand!





“The undying voice of that dead time,

 With its interminable chime,

 Rings on my spirit like a knell.”


Dost thou remember that September day

  When by the Seekonk’s lonely wave we stood,

And marked the languor of repose that lay,

  Softer than sleep, on valley, wave and wood?


A trance of solemn rapture seemed to lull

  The charméd earth and circumambient air,

And the low murmur of the leaves seemed full

  Of a resigned and passionless despair.


Though the warm breath of summer lingered still

  In the lone paths where late her footsteps passed,

The pallid star-flowers on the purple hill

  Sighed dreamily “we are the last! the last!”


I stood beside thee, and a dream of heaven

  Around me like a golden halo fell!

Then the bright veil of phantasy was riven,

  And my lips murmured “fare thee well!—farewell!”


I dared not listen to thy words, nor turn

  To meet the pleading language of thine eyes,

I only felt their power, and in the urn

  Of memory treasured their sweet rhapsodies.


We parted then forever—and the hours

  Of that bright day were gathered to the past⁠—

But through long wintry nights I heard the flowers

  Sigh dreamily, we are the last!—the last!



This is the name of one of the mouths of the Mississippi River. At the distance of 105 miles below New Orleans by the course of the river, and 90 miles in a direct line, this majestic stream enters the Gulf of Mexico by several mouths, the principal of which are the Belize, or North East Pass, in latitude 29° 7ʹ and longitude 80° 10ʹ West, and the South West Pass, in latitude 29° 8ʹ North and longitude 89° 25ʹ West. The depth of water on the bar at each of these passes is 12 to 16 feet, but much greater without and a little within the bar. Most vessels enter and leave by the Belize, and hence the frequency with which we hear this remarkable place referred to.

The tall erections in the engraved view are look-outs constructed for observing the approach of vessels, and hoisting signals. The country about the Balize is one continued swamp, destitute of trees, and covered with a species of coarse reeds, from four to five feet high. Nothing can be more dreary than a prospect from a ship’s mast while passing this immense waste.






[Alca Impennis.]

THE GREAT AUK. (Alca Impennis.)

Auk is the vernacular name for certain sea-birds of the family Alcasæ, known scientifically as species of the subgenera, Alca, Fratercula, Mergulus and Phaleris. The true Auks, though properly oceanic birds, scarcely ever leaving the water except for the purposes of reproduction, can run, though awkwardly, on foot, when pursued on land. They breed in caverns or lofty cliffs, laying but one large egg. They feed on fish and other marine animals.

The first of the genus Alca is the Great Auk, remarkable for the imperfect development of its wings. It seldom leaves the regions bordering on the Arctic and Antarctic Circles. The wings, perfectly useless for flight, are very serviceable as oars. Mr. Bullock relates that during his tour to Northern Isles, one of them, with his four oars, left a six-oared boat of pursuers far behind. Newfoundland is one of their breeding places, and the Esquimaux make clothing of their skins. They are never seen beyond soundings; and seamen direct their measures according to their appearance.

The length of the bird is less than three feet. The winter plumage, which begins to appear in autumn, leaves the cheeks, throat, fore part and sides of the neck white. In spring the summer change begins to take place, and confines the white on the head to a large patch, which extends in front and around the eyes; the rest of the head, the neck and upper plumage is of a deep black.

[Alca torda.]

RAZOR-BILL. (Alca Torda.)

In the second species of Alca, the Black-billed Auk, Razor-bill, or Murre, the development of the wings is carried to the usual extent necessary for flight, though the bird uses them with great effect as oars, when swimming under water. They are diffused over the northern hemisphere on both continents; but they are particularly abundant in the higher latitudes. In England their eggs are esteemed a great delicacy, for salads especially, and on the coast of that country the “dreadful trade” of taking their eggs is actively carried on. In Ray’s Willoughby, the habits of the Razor-bill are thus described:

“It lays, sits and breeds up its young on the ledges of the craggy cliffs and steep rocks by the seashore, that are broken and divided into many, as it were, stairs or shelves, together with the Coulternebs and Guillemots. The Manks-men are wont to compare these rocks, with the birds sitting upon them in breeding time, to an apothecary’s shop—the ledges of the rocks resembling the shelves, and the birds the pots. About the Isle of Man are very high cliffs, broken in this manner into many ledges one above another, from top to bottom. They are wont to let down men by ropes from the tops of the cliffs, to take away the eggs and the young ones. They take also the birds themselves, when they are sitting upon their eggs, with snares fastened at the top of long poles, and so put about their necks. They build no nests, but lay their eggs upon the bare rocks.

“On the coasts of Labrador they abound, and thousands of birds are there killed for the sake of the breast feathers, which are very warm and elastic, and the quantities of eggs there collected amount to almost incredible numbers.

“The summer and winter dresses of the Razor-bill, though different, do not vary so remarkably as the plumage of many other birds. In the summer dress, the white streak which goes to the bill from the eyes becomes very pure; and the cheeks, throat and upper part of the front of the neck are of a deep black, shaded with reddish. In winter the throat and fore part of the neck are white.”

The Razor-bill is fifteen inches long. The egg is disproportionately large, being about the size of that of the turkey, but longer, white or yellowish and streaked with dark brown.





When the still and solemn night

  Broodeth o’er with wing of love,

And the stars with eyes of light

  Look like spirits from above;


When the flowers their petals close

  Softly in the slumbering air,

Bending meekly in repose

  As a contrite soul at prayer;


And the waters sweep the shore

  With a low and sullen chime,

Like Life’s current falling o’er

  Into the abyss of Time;


Sometimes feel ye not a breath

  As of pinions rushing by,

Viewless as the touch of Death?

  ’Tis an angel passing nigh.


Evermore ’neath rock or tree,

  In the forest or the street,

’Mid the desert, on the sea,

  We a seraph form may meet.


Human hearts! with vision clear

  Look ye to each deed and thought;

Arm the spirit, torn in fear

  From the act in evil wrought;


We do walk forever nigh

  Waking ghost of envied dead,

And unmarked by mortal eye

  With angelic hosts do tread.


While in chorus winds rejoice,

  Though we see no guiding form,

Speaks there not a “still small voice”?

  God is riding on the storm.


Tireless roll the worlds of light,

  God is marking out their way;

Joyous beams the morning light,

  God is smiling in the ray.


Soul! though gaunt and weary care

  Haunt thine upward soaring free,

Let each pulse count out a prayer,

  The Eternal walks with thee.





Angel tokens—flower fancies⁠—

  Wrought with bright imaginings⁠—

Evermore the vision glances

  On your rainbow-tinted wings!

Underneath the wild-wood dreaming,

  Type of all that’s pure in heart,

Or upon the hill-top gleaming,

  Gems of beauty still thou art!


Angel tokens—ever filling

  Nature’s book with flowing rhyme,

Bearing in your silent trilling

  Records quaint of olden time;

Or in strange devices wreathing

  Wisdom in your swift decay,

While your last faint sigh is breathing

  “Man’s the creature of a day.”


Angel tokens—flower fancies⁠—

  Sea and sky have gone to sleep!

Why, when slumber all entrances,

  Do ye wake and sadly weep?

Are ye spirits watching o’er us,

  And the tears upon your leaves,

Do they fall for cures before us⁠—

  Is’t for this your bosom grieves?


Angel tokens—flower fancies⁠—

  Winter’s breath is on ye now

And your perfumed leaves are falling

  Crisped and shriveled from the bough⁠—

Yet when spring, with winter striving,

  O’er the earth asserts her reign,

With her smile your buds reviving,

  Ye will blossom bright again!


Angel tokens—springing lightly

  Through the glorious summer day,

Oh! could we but bloom as brightly,

  And as brightly pass away⁠—

Could our winter, death, victorious

  O’er the cold and cheerless sod

Bear us on in bloom, thus glorious,

  To the garden of our God!



My dear Jeremy,—I place before you the perils of a passage to a Turkish Paradise, because you have shown a passion for turbans, meerschaums and pretty women, and I wish to warn you. The narrow path of Christian theology is still further reduced, you see, in the Mohammedan, so that, sinner as you are, you will find it advisable to stick to the true faith, and to practice it with more diligence.

You should not let your imagination run riot—it will be the ruin of you; but take the substantials, with thankfulness, which are yours by possession, and enjoy them to the uttermost. We all—the poorest of us—have enough and to spare of the gifts of Providence to make somebody envious—the veriest slave of money, who boasts of his millions, I’ll warrant me, looks with discomfort upon your superior intellect, or your better appetite, and would part with a good slice of gold, for a taste for a fine poem, or a relish for roast-beef—and I doubt much whether you would bargain them off at his valuation. I would not give a good temper and a cheerful disposition for all the gold that any crabbed old miser may have in his bank vault; nor my troop of true friends for the hungry faces of his poor relations. Would you? Your shilling or mine will buy us more pleasure, with a friend, than he can impart, with a one per cent. discount. This is true—and yet the world does not look upon things thus philosophically. We strain our imaginations to catch at some supposed good, something we fancy would make us blessed, discarding the real good that God has imparted to us.

“You wish to travel, do you?” said an old friend of mine. “You are very silly! there is no pleasure in that. I once went all the way to Saratoga, with my family, but I saw it all in half an hour, and left in the return train. The young folks imagined, that by staying two or three weeks, something else might be discovered, and I left them to experiment; but I was done with it, and was off.”

You say this never happened. By Jove, it did though! and a sensible old codger he was in his way too—though I found that, in the end, was rather eccentric and uncertain. But he adhered to his opinion, and traveled no more. “As for traveling for pleasure,” said he, “it is absurd. I am ten times more comfortable and happy at home, where I can call for what I want, and get it, and instead of sweating in a stage-coach, on a hot and dusty day, with my knees squeezed into a perfect jelly, I throw up the back window that opens on the garden—wheel up a recumbent chair—place another for my feet—call for a bottle of champagne and a cigar, and with ice at my elbow, take mine own ease, at mine own inn. Then, as for traveling to see fine prospects, if I tire of the garden and the champagne, I can shut my eyes here—he never did in his counting-room—and can call up more splendid scenery than the Rhine can boast—can crown the hills with finer palaces than ever shone in Greece—and people them with prettier women than Mahomet will find in his Paradise, I’ll warrant him: And all this while your sight-seeing traveler is perhaps toiling and puffing up the sides of Vesuvius, over hardened lava, or is blowing his fingers on the sides of Mont Blanc, which, I dare say, are flattered in the engravings, while I can add in imagination unnumbered beauties the artists never dreamed of.”

There is good philosophy in this, Jeremy, and as it suits my pocket just now, if you will send over the champagne, I’ll try it. There is a home doctrine about it that I like, for my experience is, that a man gets into very little mischief while he stays there. How does it tally with yours?

The farther we wander in chase of forbidden pleasures, the more impressive is the conviction that we are in pursuit of bubbles, which go dancing and dazzling on, and when grasped, are empty.

And yet the world is but a vast army of bubble chasers, with here and there a sage smiling at, or rebuking, the folly. Each has his fatuity—each his blind passion, his bubble of the imagination. Fortune, Fame, Pleasure, how many do they beckon away from comfort, peace and happiness? Amid the press upon each crowded avenue, how few are allowed to turn back! How many fall and are trodden down forever! and yet the sanguine multitude, rushing over the bodies of the slain, heed not the fall of their companions, but press on as eagerly as before after vanishing shadows. Why is it, that when happiness itself is basking at our feet, imploring acceptance, that with a blind fatuity we rush at any cost on misery? Is it because the mind is ever, in this world, after the unattainable, that we see fortune, fame, domestic comfort, personal ease, all shipwrecked, on all sides of us in life, to attain the undesirable? That the merchant with his bank-roll of tens of thousands, squanders all in one wild effort to grasp a bubble upon an unknown sea. That the man of letters, to whom God has given an intellect but a little lower than that of angels, and who might model and mould the mind of a nation to good, and shine as a star in the intellectual firmament, to be worshiped in all time by the students of genius, “who follow her flashing torch along every path to knowledge”—knowing his high gifts for good, and feeling their power, scorns the possession, and scatters the bale-fires of a mighty intellect, as a volcano showers down lava and ashes, upon mankind—blighting, as with a destroying angel’s touch, the fair world in which he lives.

That the domestic hearth, with children merry-voiced, over which meek-eyed Peace hovered like a dove, and around which Heaven’s own smile seemed to linger, is treacherously invaded by the demon of jealousy, green-eyed and furious, until Crime, with swarthy countenance and bloody locks, broods with Death’s Angel over the silent spot.

The Perils of the Imagination, how they invest the unsatisfied! Are these the penalties which God imposes for unthankfulness? or is it that the devil, ever working at the heart, urges man to ingratitude, and excites him to folly? What think you, Jeremy?

“The earth hath bubbles, as the water hath,

 And we are of them.”

G. R. G.




It is undoubtedly pleasant in the midst of the weakening influences of an August day, to sit, sub tegmani fagi, and read of the sports of the watering places—the wonders of Niagara, or the discoveries of those summer travelers who, turning aside from the beaten paths, or common haunts of fashion, explore the hidden, and develop the unknown. Most agreeable is it to mingle the mental sherbet of our summer’s retirement with such timely ingredients. Herein our brethren of the daily press seem to have an advantage over us of the monthly issues, as, day by day, they prepare their ever welcome table, and are never compelled to speak of an elevated thermometer, while

Milk comes frozen in the pails,

And Dick, the shepherd, blows his nails.

Waiving this advantage, or to speak more correctly, yielding to this disadvantage, we purpose laying upon our table, and for our readers who dine later than the common class, a single dish, composed of gleanings from the flower-gardens and the stubble-fields, in a late visitation among the “wise men of the East.”

We say nothing of a rest which we set up for a short time in New York, because the continual clatter in that Babel of this land would prevent ordinary ears (and ours are of no extraordinary length) from hearing any thing worth presenting here, and the dust, which seemed to be moving in solid masses from corner to corner, rendered quite necessary to comfort and to future speculation hermetically closed eyes.

The next stage was Springfield, Mass., where we saw and conversed with Grace Greenwood—a Grace for which we were appropriately grateful. She was cultivating ideas for future use, and gathering thoughts to sustain her fame and secure the admiration of others. She was successful, undoubtedly.

But Springfield has of itself, as well as in itself, attractions of no ordinary character. The regular tourist will, of course, visit and describe the Armory, in which are stored about one hundred thousand stand of arms, all rendered nearly useless, by the introduction, since they were manufactured, of percussion caps, instead of the old flint and steel process of igniting the charge. In these days every thing must be done quickly. A rail-road of a hundred miles in length, and five millions cost, was constructed between two cities, because it would carry passengers in one hour’s time less than one already in use. And here the ignition of the powder by the spark from the flint, which seemed to measure the shortest imaginable space, we had almost said point of time, was deemed, and undoubtedly is, too slow a process for destroying human life; and so another agent is applied, whose operation is electric, and makes the intention and the act instantaneous. These guns thus put into coventry, must have cost nearly twelve hundred thousand dollars—a sum, the interest of which we wish we had to pay contributors, literary and artistic, to Graham’s Magazine.

Because the genius of our people is connected with the fact, we will just add, that at this place, as at other of the armories of the General Government, all the parts of the muskets are so constructed as to suit any one musket of the million that may be made. No single part is particular; no screw has a special gun; no spring, clasp, or brace, is intended to suit one, or two, or twenty, but each part of any musket will answer for the same part of any others without alteration of any kind. This looks like the perfection of mechanism, and the machinery used looks as if it were made by and for such perfection.

No one who visits in Springfield will neglect the large public cemetery; it is worth a visit of miles—and it requires the travel of miles, for it is large. Good taste and ingenuity are manifested in all its parts; and the buried, if they have a consciousness of their whereabout, must be satisfied to await, in that beautiful retreat, the summons which shall call together the separated bones, and clothe them anew with the incorruptible, in which they are to stand and be judged.

And the living will learn in this beautiful city of the dead, to contemplate the only certainty of their lives, and to see the slow approach of their dissolution, without that shock which the Golgothas and Aceldamas of other times were sure to impart to the delicate and sensitive.

I know that the cynic loves to point to the ornamented grave-yard, or the magnificent cemetery, as the exhibition of the pride of the living—the vanity of the survivors. And I dare not say, that even with the chastened, holy feelings which grief ensures, some particle of human vanity may not mingle, and that the monument which professes to record the virtues of the dead, may not, indeed, betoken the pride of the living.

But suppose it does—admit the charge, and what then? The pride of the living is shown where no future error of the lauded will belie or disgrace the memorial, and where the self-esteem which is gratified in the erection of the cenotaph, will never be wounded by the ingratitude of the one that sleeps beneath. Let vanity have its hour if it uses the time to praise the virtuous, and make death less repulsive; and pride which beautifies where dead men’s bones and all manner of uncleanliness once were found, commends itself to forgiveness, if it may not command our approval.

Has any one ever thought of this? All know and applaud the movement which develops and displays the virtues and beauties of our nature. But who has thought it worth while to commend the undertaking that makes the errors and deformities of our character minister to taste and refinement! The polished marble scarcely requires genius to give it a sightly and ornamental position; it is beautiful wherever found, but true taste and true skill are requisite to give symmetry and collective beauty to rough ashlars in an ornamental tenement.

When such a cemetery is established, it is natural that the private and parishional burying-places should yield up the dead, and be devoted to the more active business of life; and hence we see in various departments of this ground, old moss-grown stones that have followed the dust whose history they record, and who stand among the newly-carved pillars and slabs now become representatives not less of the taste than of the people of other times.

Wandering in the lower part of the town, near the railroad dépôt, I saw on the main street, a lot newly broken up for building. It had been the burying-ground of some church or family. One old stone was laid aside. It recorded the name of a virtuous woman, who died more than two hundred years ago. This is the antiquity of our country, and the existence of a grave-stone of that date is a part of the marvel of the present time. I was about to copy the record, but I saw some one watching me, and as I shrunk from being gazed at, I ceased from the labor. I might have brought away a part of the words, though nothing but an artist could have caught and conveyed the form of the letters, if that could be called form which was almost formless. Surely every age has its literature; and perhaps every location claims its peculiar style. Certainly the literature of the early part of the seventeenth century in Springfield had some striking peculiarities. I do not remember seeing previously the word pietously, which, if I mistake not, was on that stone—and that, too, without the necessity of rhythm. Yet most beautifully did the uncouth rhyme and shapeless sculpture of that stone, convey to the readers, the merits of a woman who lived in Springfield when that town was a wilderness, and whose virtues made that “wilderness blossom like the rose.”

From Springfield to Brattleboro’, Vt., is only three hours’ ride; but he who enters the smallest inn of an interior village in a drenching storm at night, and leaves it the next morning before the mists that night and the storm engendered have climbed up the mountain sides, and gone to mingle with the world of misty fogs above, can have but little to say of persons or places, excepting, indeed, that he may acknowledge that a clean bed and a well-supplied and well attended table exceeded the promise of the house; and that the quiet, orderly, self-respecting deportment of mechanics employed in the neighborhood, illustrate the fact elsewhere derivable, that idleness, champagne, and white gloves, are not necessary to the character of a good republican citizen.

Here is the celebrated water cure establishment of Dr. Woeselhooffer—and it is stated that cures are really by water effected. Some oblong wicker vessels, which were visible in the baggage car of the train, seemed to intimate that entire dependence is not placed on water by every one in this village, though we have seldom seen a place more liberally supplied with the pure element.

In looking along the sea-shore of Massachusetts, one is struck with the spirit of these times as contrasted with those of other years. Jutting out upon the bold, rocky promontories, are seen the beautiful summer residences of the wealthy, while each stream, formerly kept open and clear by law for the ascent and descent of migratory fish, is now dammed and swollen, to augment water power. Whole towns, cities indeed, are spread out upon the inclined surfaces, that only a few years back were deemed unfit for cultivation, and consequently unworthy of consideration, while at the entrance to each port and harbor is seen some old fort, which, fifty years ago, would, in the midst of profound peace, bristle with the glittering bayonet of men-at-arms; and each morning and evening pour out the formal thunder that bespeaks the character of the fortress and the rank of its commander. Now the façade is trodden by the horse and cow that are seeking fresh pasture, and the ramparts are broken by the borrowing of the material for some neighboring cottage or factory; and within, where the stately tread of the sentinel showed order and produced propriety, the absence of all monitions of war, and the dilapidation of all barracks and tenements show that men have come to think of peace as the proper state of society, and to regard war as such a remote contingency that the expenditures necessary for defense may be postponed to the time when defense may be suggested by aggression. We do not profess to be members of the peace party, but we should strangely mistake the signs of the times if we did not understand that they indicated a settled confidence of peace at home, not unsustained by the belief that no nation of the earth has the least desire to run their heads against the people of this country. It is the agreement of the people of the United States as to the value and importance of republican institutions, which gives invincibility to our arms; and foreign powers are wise enough to inquire not how many forts stand in front of seaboard towns, but how many hearts in town and country beat for the land and its institutions. Forts may be demolished by force, or betrayed by treason, but no combination of foreign power could tread out the institutions of this country, no considerable number of citizens be found faithless to the nation. Other people know this and do not ask for ramparts and armaments. Our own people know, and feel secure in the patriotic vigor of each and of all.

Massachusetts is a great country of villages, if, indeed, it would not be more correct to say, that nearly all of New England is a suburb of Boston. There are no townships of unoccupied lands in Massachusetts, and where, a few years prior, a stream gushed out of a swamp, turgid with the colors of the leaves and roots steeped in its waters, new villages take the place of the swamp, and the stream is seen busy with the people grinding at the mill, while from each steeple another is visible; each school-house is within sight of its like, and the well-leaved trees scarcely conceal from the inhabitants of one village the white and green of the cottages of the next town. Where such a population is found one scarcely looks for large forms or extensive homesteads; each rood of ground serves to contain and maintain its man, and the intellect of each is kept bright by the constant collision of mind with mind, and the constant necessity of vigilance to prevent encroachments or to secure the advantages of a bargain.

No one goes to the south-eastern part of Massachusetts without inquiring at least for the “farm” of Daniel Webster. It was my better lot to visit the place, and to see much of what others have of late read of. Mr. Webster purchased a large farm, which, having been in the same family almost ever since the landing of the Pilgrims, had not been disturbed by those divisions which augmented population and factory privileges effect in other parts of the state, and as the Anglo-Saxon race is remarkable for the desire to add land to land, Mr. W. has yielded to that propensity of his blood, and augmented his domains, by the annexation of two other overgrown or rather undivided farms, so that the public road seems made to divide his land for miles, and to open up for general admiration the beautiful improvements which his taste supports, and his liberality exercises.

I am not going to give any account of Mr. Webster’s place for the benefit of the agricultural society, else would I speak of his gigantic oxen, and his conquest over fell and rocks; else would I describe his swine, that seem, like the ox of the Bible, to know their owner, and to feel the consequence of such domination; else would I tell of the hundred bushels of corn which were brought forth by an acre, which ten years ago seemed to share in the common attributes of the soil of the state, viz., to present in summer the contest between a stratum of paving pebbles and some stunted grass for visibility; a contest which ceased at the approach of cold weather, when, of course, the stone became most prominent, and continued so until the snow for five months buried both parties out of sight.

Mr. Webster is as fond of the ocean as of the land, and he gathers the riches of the deep for his pleasure as well as the fatness of the earth—that is, the wild fowl and the sea fish are as successfully pursued by Mr. W. as are his agricultural objects, so that with his broad land around him, and the deep blue of the sea beyond, he sits, monarch of all he surveys.

There is in the form of Mr. W. something like himself—it is the result of industry—it is immense—it has upon it no finical decoration, no tawdry ornaments, no pretty little hiding-places, but its wide avenues lead to immeasurable oaks and elms, and far and wide useful habitations, luxuriant fields, and lordly herds of cattle speak the great proprietor; and with all Mr. Webster’s intellectual greatness he feels that even in that nook of New England he is among men who can measure his intellect and attainments, and whose respectful salutations and deferential bearing are not due to any indefinable awe for some mysterious power, attainment, or possession, but the result of a just perception of his worth, and a correct appreciation of his mental greatness and political sagacity. Mr. Webster has, of course, a magnificent library—the treasures which great minds have yielded, and a great mind gathered—a library worthy such a man—a library appropriate to such a princely residence. But it is not the only one. Within a short distance, I saw on many shelves, in the extreme building of a frame rope-walk, not four miles from Mr. Webster, a collection of books in seven or eight languages, which would make the mouth of a literary epicure water; beautiful editions of valuable works, curious collections also, and desirable copies, every one of which was familiar to its modest owner, who seemed to know every vein in his rich mine, and to be able to give the exact value of the product of each inch of its contents.

We have said that Massachusetts was the extension of Boston; it is in more ways than in the beauty of residences and the uses of wealth; not the least worthy of notice is the conformity of country with the city in the delicacy of the female mind, and the extent of refined female education, among classes which might in other parts of the country, have escaped the meliorating influences of early discipline in manners, morals, and graces; and the visiter to the villages of Massachusetts, who finds his way into the parlor in all seasons, will be delighted with the enlarged influences of correct education, and the evidences of entire compatibility of the most extensive literary attainment and feminine polish with the discharge or direct supervision of domestic duties.

A New Volume of this Magazine will be commenced in January, in a style commensurate with the liberal and still increasing patronage bestowed upon it. We know that our patrons are fully satisfied with our past exertions to gratify their tastes, and we are equally confident that they will take our word when we assure them that excellent as the present volume has been, the forthcoming one will eclipse it in splendor.

The season is now close at hand for subscribing to literary periodicals, and the formation of new clubs. Let us urge upon those who design patronizing this Magazine, to send in their orders for the new volume at an early day. Although we shall print a large edition of the first numbers, it may, and doubtless will happen—as it did last year—that the supply will be totally exhausted, and disappointments occur in consequence of our inability to furnish complete sets of the numbers. This can be effectually guarded against by an early subscription for the new volume, and we hope our friends and the public generally will bear this suggestion in mind.

We have in course of preparation some exquisite large engravings, suitable for framing, designed as premium gifts to new subscribers, and from which a selection can be made. The particulars will be given in our Prospectus for the new volume, which will shortly appear.


Oliver Goldsmith: A Biography. By Washington Irving. New York: George P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

From no living person could we have expected a more delightful biography of Goldsmith than from Washington Irving, and, accordingly, we have one, written closer to the heart and brain of its subject, than any other in English literature. There are two biographies of Goldsmith with which it will naturally be compared, Prior’s and John Forster’s, both of them works of merit, but neither equal to Irving’s in respect to felicity in conveying to the reader a living impression of Goldsmith’s character and life; and of depositing his image softly in the mind, as an object of good-natured affection. Prior is invaluable for materials, not only in regard to facts but epistolary correspondence, and displays in his style of composition no sign of being word-forsaken; but he has little juice in him, is hard and dry of mind, and exhibits no vision into the soul of Goldsmith, no capacity to clutch the living lineaments of his character. Forster’s biography is a work of more intellectual pretensions; and the narrative of Goldsmith’s life, the criticism on his various works, and the numerous anecdotes relating to the politics and literature of the time, are done with an ability we could not but expect from a man of Forster’s mental powers and accomplishments: but unfortunately the subject was one in which his mind had little real sympathy, and, accordingly, the whole book, as far as it refers to Goldsmith, is pervaded by affectation and sentimentality. The style is made up of Carlylisms and Macaulayisms, and further depraved by a sickly cant of sympathy with the poor—which cant bears evidence of being written by a man in extremely comfortable circumstances. But Irving is, in intellectual constitution, sufficiently like Goldsmith to comprehend him thoroughly, and his biography, therefore, has the truth and consistency of dramatic delineation, without any parade of knowledge or sentiment. With exquisite refinement of thought, and simplicity of narrative, it exhibits the gradual growth of Goldsmith’s mind and disposition under the tutorship of experience, and so clear is the representation, that the dullest eye cannot miss seeing the essential features of the character, and the dullest heart admiring them.

It is almost needless to say that the style is lucid, graceful and pure, with that “polished want of polish” in the selection of the words, which indicates a master in diction. The spirit breathed over the work is genial and sympathetic, and while it throws a charm around Goldsmith, makes the reader in love with Irving. The selections from Goldsmith’s letters and writings, introduced as illustrations of events in his life, and qualities of his character, do not stand apart from the biographer’s text, but rather seem to melt into it, and form a vital portion of the work. Irving has avoided the fault of the other biographers, in not admitting extraneous matter, and rejecting every thing which does not strictly relate to Goldsmith. The sketches of men, and descriptions of English life and manners, which he introduces, are all illustrative of the circumstances and position of his author. Among these, the remarks on Johnson, Langton and Topham Beauclerc, and the account of the Literary Club, are the most felicitous.

In the last chapter of the volume, Irving sums up, with great delicacy and discrimination, the various qualities of Goldsmith, and presents, with a loving pen, his claims upon the reader’s esteem. We cannot refrain from quoting the concluding remarks, both for their beauty and justice. “From the general tone of Goldsmith’s biography, it is evident that his faults, at the worst, were but negative, while his merits were great and decided. He was no one’s enemy but his own; his errors, in the main, inflicted evil on none but himself, and were so blended with humorous, and even affecting circumstances, as to disarm anger and conciliate kindness. Where eminent talent is united to spotless virtue, we are awed and dazzled into admiration, but our admiration is apt to be cold and reverential; while there is something in the harmless infirmities of a good and great, but erring individual, that pleads touchingly to our nature; and we turn more kindly toward the object of our idolatry, when we find that, like ourselves, he is mortal and frail. The epithet so often heard, and in such kindly tones, of ‘poor Goldsmith,’ speaks volumes. Few, who consider the real compound of admirable and whimsical qualities which form his character, would wish to prune away its eccentricities, trim its grotesque luxuriance, and clip it down to the decent formalities of rigid virtue. ‘Let not his frailties be remembered,’ said Johnson, ‘for he was a very great man.’ But, for our part, we rather say, ‘let them be remembered,’ since their tendency is to endear; and we question whether he himself would not feel gratified in hearing his reader, after dwelling with admiration on the proofs of his greatness, close the volume with the kind-hearted phrase, so fondly and so familiarly ejaculated, of Poor Goldsmith.”

Bulwer and Forbes on the Water Treatment. Edited, with Additional Matter, by Roland S. Houghton, M. D. New York; Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

This volume is published especially for the benefit of literary and professional men, to whom the editor dedicates it. As it is addressed “to those who think,” there is a natural disposition on the part of the reader to think with the editor. The most entertaining piece in the volume is Bulwer’s letter, in which the author of Pelham, after describing the melancholy condition of his health under the regular practice, gives his experience as a Water Patient. The other articles are more elaborate and learned disquisitions on Hydropathy, written by physicians; and whatever may be the opinion of the reader as to the merits of the water cure as a medical science, he cannot fail to obtain much valuable information about bathing, and many strong inducements to look after the health of his skin.

Story of a Genius, or Cola Monti. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 16mo.

This is a little story somewhat after the manner of Miss Sedgwick’s delicious juvenile tales, evidencing not merely a laudable purpose in the moral, but no mean powers of characterization, and a considerable knowledge of practical life. Cola, the slight dark-eyed Italian boy, the genius of the story, and Archibald McKaye, the youth marked out for a mercantile profession, are both well delineated; and the idea of bringing them together as natural friends is an anticipation of that union between artist and merchant which we trust will soon be more common in real life.

The Child’s First History of Rome. By E. M. Sewell, Author of Amy Herbert, &c. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 16mo.

Miss Sewell has performed, in this little volume, a difficult task, showing throughout that she understands what few authors of children’s books seem to comprehend—a child’s mind. A series of histories, composed on similar principles, would be a positive and permanent addition to the literature of youth. The authoress, not being “above her business,” but having her audience constantly in her mind, has succeeded in avoiding every thing which would make her narrative obscure to children, and her style mirrors events in the light they ever appear to boys and girls. The account of the death of Cleopatra is one out of many examples of this felicity. In the following extract the very tone of a child’s mind is caught and expressed. “Shortly afterward an officer arrived from Octavius. The first thing he saw when he entered the room was Cleopatra, dressed in her royal robes, stretched lifeless upon a golden couch. She had killed herself by means of an asp, a kind of serpent, which was brought to her in a basket of figs, and the sting of which was deadly. Iras was lying dead at the feet of her mistress; and Charmian, scarcely alive, was placing a crown upon her head. ‘Was this well done, Charmian?’ inquired the messenger of Octavius. ‘Yes,’ replied Charmian, ‘it is well done, for such a death befits a glorious queen.’ ”

The volume, in addition to the simplicity of its narrative, bears evidence of having been compiled from good authorities; and if extensively read by the juvenile public, will be likely to make most children more informed in regard to Roman history, at least, than the majority of parents.

A Lift for the Lazy. New York: Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

Few readers will have modesty enough to acknowledge publicly that this brilliant volume is addressed to them, but doubtless a great many, convicted by conscience, will take a sly peep into it to see if it really meets their wants. In truth, the author has contrived to embody in it much curious information, which the most industrious scholars have either forgotten or never acquired. It contains about five hundred scraps of knowledge, collected from a wide field of miscellaneous reading, some of which are valuable, some quaint, some sparkling, and all entertaining. We have only space to extract one specimen of the author’s style, and that illustrative of his way of relating an anecdote. Under the head of “Congreve Rockets,” he remarks, “These destructive implements of war were invented in 1803, by Sir William Congreve. On a certain occasion, when visiting Westminster Abbey, in company with some ladies, his attention was directed by one of the party to the inscription on the great composer, Purcell’s monument: ‘He has gone to that place where only his music can be excelled.’ ‘There, Sir William,’ said the young lady, ‘substitute fire-works for music, and that epitaph will answer for yourself.’ ”

Scenes where the Tempter has Triumphed. By the Author of “The Jail Chaplain.” New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 16mo.

Here is a book, replete with morality and religion, in which a view of human nature is taken as it appears to an observer posted in a jail or on the gallows. There are nineteen chapters, each devoted to the narrative of a different person and a different crime, and each as interesting as one of Ainsworth’s novels, and as moral as one of Baxter’s Sermons. A book which thus addresses two large classes of readers can hardly fail to succeed. We should think it an admirable text book for Sunday-Schools in Texas. It places before every criminal’s eye a more or less distant view of the jail and gallows, and is thus really “an awful warning to the youth of America,” and differs essentially from the “Pirate’s Own Book,” “The Lives of Celebrated Highwaymen,” and other piquant books of the rascal department of letters.

The Stars and the Earth; or Thoughts upon Space, Time, and Eternity. Boston: Crosby & Nichols.

This is a small volume of eighty-seven pages crammed with thought. It appears to have excited much attention abroad, and to have passed rapidly through three editions. The speculations of the author are grand and original, having a solid basis on undoubted facts, and conducting the mind to results of “great pith and moment.” We have no space to make an abstract of what is in itself an epitome, but advise all our readers, who have thought on the subject of space and time, to obtain the work. Its style is a transparent medium for the thought, and its meaning stupidity itself can hardly miss. It requires neither a knowledge of mental or physical science to be comprehended, though it is an addition to both; and it removes some difficulties which have troubled all reflecting minds.

Retribution; or the Vale of Shadows. A Tale of Passion. By Emma D. E. Nevitt Southworth. New York: Harper & Brothers.

Judged by its own pretensions as a tale of passion, this work has considerable merit, and is worthy of a more permanent form than the pamphlet in which it is published. The mode which the Harpers have adopted of issuing all novels in this uncouth shape, in order to reduce their price to twenty-five cents, is an unfortunate one for the success of a new novelist like the accomplished authoress of the present story. No man of taste, who has regard for his eyesight, is likely to read pamphlet novels, unless the author be celebrated; and the circulation of a book like the present, is therefore likely to be confined to persons who are not in the habit of discriminating very closely between one novelist and another, provided both be readable, and consume a certain portion of leisure time. Whenever an American author produces a work of fiction as meritorious in respect to literary execution as “Retribution,” it ought to be issued in a form which will enable it to take its appropriate place in American literature.

History of the United States of America. By Richard Hildreth. New York: Harper & Brothers. Vol. 2. 8vo.

This volume ends at about the commencement of the Revolution. It is written in the same style, and on similar principles, as the first volume, which we noticed a short time ago. The work is, at least, worthy the praise of condensation, there being included in the present volume, a narrative of the events occurring in all “the Colonies during the period of a hundred years.”

Letters from the Allegheny Mountains. By Charles Lanman. New York: Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

The author of this agreeable volume is well known as an essayist and tourist. The present work is mostly made up of letters originally contributed to the National Intelligencer, and, as a record of first impressions of scenery and manners, has a raciness and truth which a more elaborate treatment of the subject might have wanted.

Anaïs Toudouze


PARIS, Boulevart St. Martin, 61.

Robes de Mme. Bara Bréjard, r. Laffitte, 5;

Chapeau et bonnet de Mme. Baudry, r. Richelieu, 87—Fleurs de Chagot ainé, r. Richelieu, 81.

Graham’s Magazine







Presented to “Graham’s Magazine,” and respectfully dedicated to the readers thereof, by the Author.

Wake, lady, wake, thy lover true

On wings of love has flown to you;

How sad each night, how dull each day,


he has been from you away;

Wake, lady, in thy beauty bright,

Outshine the silv’ry moon to-night.


        Second Verse.


How drear the months that I have passed

Since in these arms I held thee last,

Since those dear balmy lips I pressed,

And strained thee to my throbbing breast;

Come with thy eyes of melting blue,

More bright than radiant orbs of dew.


        Third Verse.


Come, lady, come, this is the hour

That Love has placed within our power;

Renew our vows, complete my bliss,

And seal the contract with a kiss;

And then beneath our roseate bower,

Thou’lt shine my fairest sweetest flower.

Transcriber’s Notes:

Table of Contents has been added for reader convenience. Archaic spellings and hyphenation have been retained. Punctuation has been corrected without note. Other errors have been corrected as noted below. For illustrations, some caption text may be missing or incomplete due to condition of the originals available for preparation of the eBook.


page 255, and speak him ==> and speak to him

page 257, that courge would fail ==> that courage would fail

page 260, and sung to him, ==> and sang to him,

page 267, not the slighest scruple ==> not the slightest scruple

page 268, femine refinement were ==> feminine refinement were

page 270, give me the sweatmeats ==> give me the sweetmeats

page 273, was actully a delightful ==> was actually a delightful

page 273, or exibit at home the ==> or exhibit at home the

page 274, hues, to soon have ==> hues, too soon have

page 276, reigning in his steed, ==> reining in his steed,

page 277, his path their suddenly ==> his path there suddenly

page 278, reigning in his horses ==> reining in his horses

page 278, thee, Effie,” immediately ==> thee, Effie,” then immediately

page 279, pour passer le tems, ==> pour passer le temps,

page 283, a terestrial paradise to ==> a terrestrial paradise to

page 283, simple, unforseen accidents, ==> simple, unforeseen accidents,

page 284, sold his warbrobe to ==> sold his wardrobe to

page 289, heaven rung with the ==> heaven rang with the

page 305, and Antartic Circles. The ==> and Antarctic Circles. The

page 309, depòt, I saw on the ==> dépôt, I saw on the

page 312, Miss Sewall has performed ==> Miss Sewell has performed

page 312, visiting Westminster Abby, ==> visiting Westminster Abbey,


[The end of Graham's Magazine Vol. 35 No. 5 November 1849 edited by George Rex Graham]