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Title: Graham's Magazine, Vol. XXX, No. 5 (May 1847)

Date of first publication: 1847

Author: George R. Graham (editor)

Date first posted: Jan. 13, 2018

Date last updated: Jan. 13, 2018

Faded Page eBook #20180124

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


Vol. XXX.      May, 1847.      No. 5.

Table of Contents

Fiction, Literature and Articles

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


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

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

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



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







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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Within a few weeks,” said the other.

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

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



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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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



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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

Never! Sir Philip Bender,” she exclaimed with emphasis, starting from her seat, which he had gradually approached. “It shall never be. The God of Heaven will protect me. I will never be your bride.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“The ring?” inquired the chaplain.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

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

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

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

Still Gansevoort did not reply.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

[Conclusion in our next.






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

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

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

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

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

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

“Why, then, how do I know, Corny?”

“What do you think of Judy Tucker?”

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

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

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

“Oh, let me alone.”

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

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

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

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

“Oh, yeh! what’s that you say?”

A husband, dear! And sich a beautiful farm! Ten cows—no less, and every one of them white with a black star on their foreheads. Did you ever see him, Judy?”

“No, I never did.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Yes, to be sure!”

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

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

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

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

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

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

Love, she is a killin’ thing!”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“O,” said Mehicle, “good morning, ma’am. I heard the cock crowing, and I thought it was break-of-day, and then I got up and sat here; and after that I considered it couldn’t be day, or you’d be up; but now I see it is.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“O, dear, sir! that was terrible,” said she. “I hope they didn’t do any more to your land?”

“O, yes; that was nothing, ma’am. The next brother, Terry, then, ma’am, says, says he, ‘Why hasn’t myself as good a right as them two?’ says he. ‘I’ll go to law,’ says he; and so he went to law, and we did our best, but he bate us, and it was left to arbitration; and then we had to divide our land somehow so,” cutting across again, “or, stop, I’m wrong, there was more of a corner cut off than that—it was more like this;” another sliver, “and there was a wall running across, as it might be so;” and here followed another slice; by this time, too, the cake was pretty well minced.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“O, I’m sure he is.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“O, dear! so you’ve caught me,” said Brian, “who are you?”

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

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

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

“O, stop! and God reward you! stop! Sure I’m Mr. Mungavan!”

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

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

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

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

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

“Mutton, and good fat bacon

 Was there, like turf in creels.”

Or rather in the language of the old song:⁠—

“There was lashins of beef there,

 And stammins of sheep there,

 And whiskey came pourin’ galore.”

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

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


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

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

Old stingy fellow.


My wandering feet have trod those paths to-day,

Where I so late with thee in joyance went,

And gladly thitherward my steps I bent,

Turning me from the dust and din away,

And tracing with a quiet joy each spot

Hallowed by some remembrance dear to me,

A smile, a tone that cannot be forgot⁠—

Places whose every charm was won from thee;

And therefore do I love that grassy way,

And every spot which thou hast wandered o’er,

And as a miser counts his secret store

When darkness has obscured the light of day,

So in thy absence, which is my heart’s night,

Thy treasured words and smiles tell I with deep delight.





“There’s a glory over the face of Youth⁠—

  And Age as fair a light displays,

When beautiful Love and spotless Truth

  Have guided all her ways!


“But Sin is a hideous thing to see,

  His eyes are dulled before his prime,

And each year leaveth the mark of three,

  For he hurries the hand of Time!”


Thus spake the awaiting Angel Death,

  By a way-side beggar-crone,

Who wrestled with the reluctant breath

 On a pillow of broken stone!


’Twas a fearful sight to see her gasp,

  And clutch the air in her sinewy palms

As if forcing from a miser’s grasp

  The miserable alms!


But a sight to bring the tear-drops down

  Was the little maiden pale and thin

Who stood by her side in a tattered gown

  Which let the sharp air in!


Hatless and shoeless she stood in the rain,

  And shivered like autumn’s leaf,

Trembling with very hunger and pain,

  And weeping with fear, not grief!


“What ails you, mother?” the maiden cried,

  “What makes you tremble and stare?

Why do you look so angry-eyed

  As you strike the empty air?


“I fear you mother! Your angry brow!

  Your wild and piercing eye!

Oh, do not, do not hurt me now,

  There is no one to see me cry!


“Oh, mother, why do you beat me so?

  And why do we walk all day,

And rest at night, if it rain or snow,

  In cold, wet beds of hay?


“Oh, why do the village children play

  And seem so very glad?

And why are they dressed so clean and gay

  While I am so meanly clad?


“Do not their parents beat them too,

  To make them moan and cry?

Or are their mothers weaker than you,

  And the children stronger than I?


“I’ve seen the parents kiss and hold

  Their little ones on the knee!

I, mother, am well nigh ten years old,

  You never did so with me!


“Why am not I as pretty and good

  As the little girls in the town?

Are mine the meaner flesh and blood

  Because I am burnt so brown?


“And why do they go with happy looks

  Up where the chapel stands,

Some with their little shining books

  And flowers in their hands?


“Oh, mother, I wish you would take me there!

  For often as we go by

Their voices come through the happy air

  As if from the open sky!


“Oh, mother, I wish I could join the strain,

  And learn their beautiful words;

I am sure they do not sing for pain

  No more than the little birds!


“You know how once we followed them out

  To the forest green and gay;

How they danced and sang a song about

  The beautiful flowers of May!


“Oh, they seemed like a band of angels, free

  From hunger, pain and strife;

As a lady once told me I should be

  If I lived on honest life!


“Then I wondered if we were to die that night,

  If we should be angels fair!

But, mother, what makes your cheeks so white,

  Why, why do you shiver and stare?


“Oh, mother, mother! you have often said

  You’d kill me yet in some lonely place

If I did not steal—and did not shed

  More tear-streams down my face!


“And when in the prison cell we lay,

  Because you took the purse,

I remember how I heard you say

  A very dreadful curse!


“How then you threatened to take my life

  Because I lied not more!

And I remember still the knife

  You said you had used before!


“I fear you, mother! more and more!

  You groan and give such fearful starts,

Ah, spare me now! and at every door

  I’ll cry till I break all hearts!


“But, mother, see, arise, arise!

  A carriage comes up the vale;

They cannot, I’m sure, refuse our cries,

  Now that you look so pale!”


Thus spake the maid—and the carriage came,

  And she stood as with hunger wild;

While suddenly burst from the coach a dame

  Crying “my child! my child!


The crone half rose from her dying place,

  With her mouth and eyes all wide!

And she knew the injured mother’s face,

  Then fell on her own and died!



          PART II.


One day in the summer garden fair

  The mother and daughter strayed;

With trembling tongue and timid air

  Thus spake the little maid.


“Oh, must I call you mother, indeed?

  And are you really so?

And may a useless way-side weed

  In a beautiful garden grow?


“Yes, you have told me all the tale,

  How I was stolen away,

And how you grew all thin and pale,

  Grieving for many a day!


“Day after day my heart repeats

  The story o’er and o’er!

And when you say you love me, it beats

  As it never did before!


“Oh, what are all these flowers that load

  The bushes with red and white?

There are many growing beside the road,

  But none so large and bright!


“Along the fence the alder grows,

  To shade the dusty way,

And by the brook the briar blows

  Where the cat-bird sings all day!


“Down by the meadows long and wet,

  The willow-walks are made;

And now and then a violet

  Grows in the willow’s shade.


“The dandelion and mullin bloom

  By the glossy buttercups’ bed;

And the thistle looks like a soldier’s plume

  With its beautiful tip of red!


“The blackberries grow by the stony wall,

  You may pick them as you pass;

The strawberries, too, but so scattered and small

  You must hunt them in the grass!


“All these along the highway shine;

  And as I see from here

The turnpike’s long and winding line,

  My heart sends up a tear!


“For they were the only things to cheer

  The long and weary mile!

The only things for many a year

  That ever wore a smile!


“Oh, mother, in our idle hours

  We’ll wander down the glen,

And I’ll show you some of the simple flowers

  That smiled upon me then!


“Come, let us walk by the road and search,

  There where the poplars stand;

That I may carry some flowers to church

  To-morrow in my hand!


“Then, where the old woman is doomed to lie

  In the mound so new and bare,

I’ll slip aside, as we go by,

  And quietly lay them there.


“So that if she is up in Heaven,

  Singing the angels’ psalms,

She may know that all has been forgiven

  By these beautiful bright alms!


“The good man told us, the other day,

  We must forgive our foes!

And I forgive her; though she, you say,

  Was the mother of my woes!


“I love to hear the church organ blow

  When the people rise from their places!

And the children stand in a shining row

  And sing with happy faces!


“Their sweet hymns make my heart rejoice

  Like a blue-bird in the spring;

But when I try to raise my voice

  I weep; for I cannot sing!


“Their strain has a sweet and delicate tone;

  But mine has none of such;

It seems more like the wind’s low moan

  Of which I have heard so much!


“Then, since my voice will not join with theirs,

  In my heart I try to pray,

And I whisper o’er those little prayers

  You taught me how to say!


“Say, mother, why did the preacher place

  His dripping hand on the little child?

And did you not mark its rosy face

  How angel-like it smiled?


“When I was so very, very small,

  Did you carry me up the aisle,

And when I felt the waters fall,

  Say, did I weep or smile?


“And then again in the afternoon

  They brought another there,

The while the organ’s solemn tune,

  Hung heavy on the air.


“But this one in its coffin lay,

  While its mother sobbed aloud;

And its little hands were cold as clay,

  And its face was white as its shroud.


“Then they slowly lowered it into the ground,

  While the pebbles down after it slid;

And, mother, I still can hear the sound

  Of the gravel upon the lid!


“Asleep or awake I hear it fall,

  And it’s grown to a pleasant noise;

It seems like a loving angel’s call—

  And I must obey the voice!”


Thus spoke the child—And the Sabbath calm

  Brought the loud organ’s sorrowful sound,

And the great bell tolled its solemn psalm

  As they laid her in the ground!






Ay me! For aught that I did ever hear,

Did ever read in tale or history,

The course of true love never did run smooth.


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Farewell, Lionel Thornhill.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“I swear it.”

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

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

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

“If life and limb hold out, I will.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Your promised husband, Mistress Margaret!”

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

“My promised husband!”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“And I, that I will die sooner.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

They talked, they laughed, they were merry.

Sir Hugh Clavering and Sir Andrew Acton.

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

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

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

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

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


Margaret’s Well.


who drinketh here,

Pray for the soul of Margaret.






Night on the mountain—the beautiful night!

The bright stars are beaming with silvery light;

And the pale crescent moon, sailing calmly on high,

Looks down on the earth from her home in the sky;

Oh the sunniest day has no lovelier sight,

Than the tranquil repose of the beautiful night.


Night in the valley—the tall forest trees

In whispers reply to the voice of the breeze;

The streamlet glides softly amidst its green bowers;

The air is perfumed by the night-blooming flowers;

And the song of the bulbul, the fire-fly’s light,

Proclaim through the valley, night, beautiful night.


For soon—far too soon—comes the loud busy day;

Slowly and sadly the stars fade away,

As if even they, in their glory, could grieve

A world of such exquisite beauty to leave;

But with eve they’ll return, and their pure holy light

Long, long shall illumine the beautiful night.





  Let Ruin lift his arm, and crush in dust

    The glittering piles and palaces of kings,

  And, changing crown and sceptre into rust,

    Doom them to sleep among forgotten things!⁠—

    Let Time o’ershadow with his dusky wings,

  Warriors who guilty eminence have gained,

    And drank renown at red, polluted springs⁠—

  Sacked peaceful towns—the holy shrine profaned

And to their chariot-wheels the groaning captive chained!


  But the self-exiled Britons, who behind

    Left Transatlantic luxuries, and gave

  Their parting salutations to the wind,

    And, scorning the vile languor of the slave,

    Rocked with the little May Flower on the wave,

  To immortality have prouder claim:

    Let the bright Muse of History engrave

  Their names in fadeless characters of flame,

And give their wondrous tale an everlasting fame!


  No empty vision of unbounded power⁠—

    No dream of wild romance—no thirst for gold,

  Lured them from merry England’s hall and bower⁠—

    Her Sabbath chime of bells, her hamlet old;

    At home religious bigotry controlled

  The struggling wing of thought; a gloomy cloud,

    Charged with despotic wrath, above them rolled;

  And haunts they sought where man might walk unbowed,

And sacred Truth might raise her warning voice aloud.


  No waving flag, gay plume or gleaming casque

    Proclaimed them masters of war’s bloody trade;

  Less daring spirits from the mighty task

    In terror would have shrunken: tender maid,

    And daughter gently reared, for God to aid

  Their feeble natures, breathed the words of prayer,

    And in Heaven’s panoply their soul’s arrayed⁠—

  Speeding the good work on, though frail and fair,

When sterner manhood felt the faintness of despair.


  Old Sparta in exulting tones may boast,

    Of ancient matrons who could deck the bier

  Of sire and husband, slain where host met host,

    And, in the flush of pride, forget the tear:

    Our pilgrim mothers, too, could conquer fear,

  And stifle sorrow; but their hearts enshrined

    The soft affections: Who loves not to hear

  Their praises sung?—their constancy of mind,

Amid thy daughters’ Greece, we strive in vain to find!


  White lay the snow flakes on the lonely shore,

    And Winter flung his banner on the blast⁠—

  Behind swept angry waters, and before

    Spread waving woods, dark, limitless and vast,

    When a new continent received at last

  Our houseless sires. The red man, gaunt and grim,

    On the strange scene his falcon vision cast;

  And nameless terror shook his tawny limb

While, drowning ocean’s roar, went up their triumph-hymn;


  And when the bold survivors of the band

    Reached the decaying autumn-time of life,

  And locks were white, and palsied was the hand,

    Barbaric swarms, with axe and deadly knife,

    And painted, plumed, and quivered for the strife,

  Rushed from their trackless lairs to burn—despoil⁠—

    Butcher the cradled babe, the pleading wife;

  Then swept the nodding harvest from the soil,

And scattered on the wind the fruits of patient toil.


  When the green, shrouding moss of time o’ercrept

    Mounds in the vale and on the mountain-side,

  Where the stern founders of our empire slept,

    Improvement, moving with gigantic stride,

    Still hurried onward:—patient Labor plied

  The ringing axe; and from his old domain

    Fled drowsy Solitude; while far and wide

  The scene grew bright with fields of golden grain,

And orchards robed in bloom on hill and sunny plain.


  The wand of Enterprise to queenly states

    Gave wondrous being; rivaling the spell

  That reared round Thebes a wall of many gates

    When proud Amphion[A] swept his chorded shell,

    The tuneful gift of Hermes: pastoral bell,

  With tinkling murmurs, woke savannahs green,

    And roused wild echoes in the woody dell,

  Where late the cougar, of terrific mien,

Devoured the fawn, or rocked upon his perch unseen.


  With his penates, to the distant shores

    Of our broad western streams, Adventure hied,

  And pierced the soil for rich metallic ores,

    Or, with a keen, prophetic vision, spied

    An unborn mart upon the river-side;

  While Traffic trimmed her bark to brave the gale,

    And meet the terrors of a chartless tide⁠—

  In nameless havens furled her tattered sail,

Or toward Pacific seas, pursued the red man’s trail.


  The buskined lords of bow and leathern quiver

    Were thy admiring sponsors long ago,

  And named thee “Genesee,” my native river,(1)

    For pleasant are thy waters in their flow!

    Though on thy sides no bowers of orange grow,

  The free and happy in thy valley throng,

    O’er which the airs of health delight to blow⁠—

  No richer, brighter charms than thine belong

To streams immortal made by proud Homeric song.


  Although thy tide that winds through pastures now,

    By fleecy flock and lowing kine is drank,

  A river of the wilderness wert thou,

    When mixed in deadly combat on thy bank

    The yelling Savage and impetuous Frank:[B]

  Thy wave lifts up no murmuring voice to tell

    Where the red, bubbling stream of carnage sank,

  When rattling gun, loud groan and fiendish yell

Thy hollow murmur drowned, and gasping valor fell:


  And Nature, in the moss of time attired,

    On her green throne of forest sat, when came

  The host of Sullivan, with vengeance fired,

    To rouse upon thy shore the beast of game,

    And wrap the lodges of fierce tribes in flame,

  Fresh from unhappy Wyoming, and red

    With scalps of hoary age and childless dame:

  Gone from thy borders are the oaks that spread

Their yellow, autumn palls above the martial dead.


  Eastward the soldiers of that campaign bore

    Glad tidings of unpruned but pleasant lands,

  Washed by thy surges, like those spies of yore

    Who brought ripe grapes from Eschol to the bands

    By Moses led across the desert sands.

  Regardless of the sons of Anak, soon

    Bold men, of dauntless hearts and iron hands,

  Left home, while life was in its active noon,

To hear the forest wind thy flood’s deep voice attune.


  They fled not, like scourged vassals in the night,

    From dungeon, rack and chain, with footstep fleet:

  The halls of their nativity were bright,

    And fraught with recollections, fond and sweet,

    Of childish hours; and hearts that loved them beat

  Beneath their pleasant roofs: forsaking all⁠—

    They roused the wood-wolf from his dim retreat,

  And boldly reared the gloomy cabin wall

Of rude, misshapen logs, amid the forest tall.


  They little thought, while roving near the site

    Of thy proud city,[C] deafened by the sound

  Of waters tumbling from a fearful height,

    And darkened by the wilderness around,

    That soon its hollow roaring would be drowned,

  By the deep murmur of the mighty crowd,

    Amid thick domes, with tower and turret crowned;

  The din of whirling cars, and clatter loud

Of mills by human art with iron lungs endowed:


  Nor did they dream that, in communion grand,

    Broad Erie’s wave, and Hudson’s mighty tide,

  Within a channel shaped by mortal hand,

    Ere half a century elapsed, would glide:

    That soon fair Buffalo, in queenly pride,

  Would spring the Carthage of our inland seas,

    And wave her sceptre o’er the waters wide⁠—

  To shipping change the patriarchal trees,

And launch a thousand barks to battle with the breeze.


  The foreign tourist gazing on thy vale,

    By rural seat and stately mansion graced,

  Stands mute with wonder when he hears the tale

    Of thy redemption from the sylvan waste:

    That only fifty years their rounds have traced

  Since Phelps, the Cecrops of thy realm(2) forsook

    The peopled haunts of Genius, Art and Taste,

  While doubting friends with apprehension shook,

And love upon his form fixed sad, regretful look.


  On the broad green acclivities that round

    The lovely lake of Canandaigua rise,

  The groves in deep, majestic grandeur frowned,

    Hiding their gloomy secrets from the skies,

    And scarred and worn by storms of centuries,

  When painted hordes, with streaming locks of jet,

    Terrific garb, and wildly glancing eyes,

  Him and his daring band in treaty met

Though late with Christian gore the tomahawk was wet.


  A magic mirror girt by emerald,

    In shade embowered, the diamond waters lay;

  While the proud eagle, king-like, fierce and bald,

    Throned on the blasted hemlock, eyed his prey:

    Sweet wild-flowers, guarded from the blaze of day,

  Delicious odor on the soft air flung;

    And birds of varied note and plumage gay

  On shrubs and vines, with ripening berries hung,

Folded their glittering wings, and amorously sung.


  The water-rat and darting otter swam

    Amid the reedy flags that fringed the shore;

  And the brown beaver to his rounded dam,

    With patient toil, the tooth-hewn sappling bore:

    The lonely heron, surfeited with gore.

  Smoothed on the pebbly beech his plumage dank:

    Earth, sky and wave an air of wildness wore,

  And nimbly down the green and sloping bank

Came stag and timid hind, on silver hoof and drank.


  The pen of voiceful narrative may well

    That solemn congress in the forest call

  A thrilling and romantic spectacle:

    The trunks of oaken monarchs, huge and tall,

    Were the rough columns of their council hall;

  Thick boughs were interwoven overhead,

    And winds made music with their leafy pall:

  Below a tangled sea of brushwood spread,

Through which, to far-off wild, the beaten war-path led.


  Few were the whites in number, and about

    The council-fire were gathered dusky throngs,

  From whose dark bosoms time had not washed out

    The bitter memory of recent wrongs.

    Some longed to wake their ancient battle-songs,

  And on the reeking spoils of conflict gaze⁠—

    Bind the pale captive to the stake with thongs,

  And hellish yells of exultation raise,

While shriveled up his form, and blackened in the blaze.


  The compact for a cession of their land

    Was nearly ended, when a far-famed chief

  Rose with the lofty bearing of command,

    Though lip and brow denoted inward grief:

    Nought broke the silence save the rustling leaf,

  And the low murmur of the lulling wave;

    He drew his blanket round him, and a brief,

  But proud description of his fathers gave,

Then spoke of perished tribes, and glory in the grave.


  “And who be ye?” he said, in scornful tones,

    And glance of kindling hate—“Who offer gold

  For hunting-grounds made holy by the bones

    Of our great seers and sagamores of old?

    Men who would leave our hearths and altars cold⁠—

  Unstring the bow, and break the hunting-spear⁠—

    Our pleasant huts with sheeted flame infold,

  Then drive our starving, wailing race in fear

Beyond the western hills, like broken herds of deer.


  “Wake, On-gue-hon-we![D] Strike the pointed-post,

    And gather quickly for the conflict dire;

  You Long-knives are forerunners of a host,

    Thick as the sparks when prairies are on fire;

    Let childhood grasp the weapon of his sire⁠—

  Arm, arm for deadly struggle, one and all

    While wives and babes to secret haunts retire:

  The ghosts of buried fathers on ye call

To guard their ancient tombs from sacrilege or fall!”


  Dark forms rose up, and brows began to lower,

    While many a savage eye destruction glared;

  But one came forth in that portentous hour,

    Ere shaft was aimed, or dagger fully bared,

    And hushed the storm. Old Houneyawus dared

  His voice upraise; and by his friendly aid

    The knife was sheathed—the pioneer was spared;

  Above that humane warrior of the shade

Let marble tell the tale in lines that cannot fade.


  All hail our early settlers! though with storm

    Their sky of being was obscured and black,

  And Peril, in his most appalling form,

    Opposed their rugged march, and warned them back:

    They faltered not, or fainted in the track

  That led to empire; but with patience bore

    Cold, parching thirst, and fever’s dread attack;

  While ancient Twilight, to return no more,

From far Otsego fled to Erie’s rock-bound shore.


  They toiled, though Hunger with his wasted mien,

    Stalked through their infant settlements, and night

  Lured from the gloomy cavern, gaunt and lean,

    Droves of disturbing wolves, that hated light,

    Some wan and trembling mourner to affright

  With their dismaying howls, around the place

    Where coldly still, and newly hid from sight,

  Earth folded loved ones in her damp embrace,

Without recording tomb their forest mounds to grace.


  From clearing rude, and dismal swamp undrained,

    Fumes of decaying vegetation rose;

  While the fell genius of distemper reigned,

    And filled the newly-opening realm with woes;

    Brave manhood smiting—though his lusty blows

  Tall ranks of warrior oaks in dust had bowed,

    And robbing widowed beauty of her rose,

  Or weaving, while the voice of wail was loud,

Round childhood, early lost, the drapery of the shroud.


  Born in the lap of plenty and of wealth,

    Mindless, too oft, are children of the sire

  Who purchased at the fearful price of health,

    And even life, their heritage. The lyre

    Should call forth music from its proudest wire

  In praise of men who brave, to bless their kind,

    Tempest, the sword, foul pestilence and fire;

  Their names in grateful hearts should be enshrined,

When crumbled are their bones—their ashes on the wind:


  And those who left the venerated breast,

    And soil of proud New England, to reclaim

  Our smiling El Dorado of the West

    From centuries of gloom, and haunts of game

    Change to Arcadian lovelines, and tame

  The virgin rudeness of the shaded mould,

    Should not be unremembered:—on the same

  Eternal page where Fame, in lines of gold,

Hath pilgrim virtue traced, their names should be enrolled.

Dictus et Amphion, Thebanæ conditor arcis,

Saxa movere sono testudinis, et prece blanda

Ducere quo vellet.    Hor. de. Art. Poet.

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


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


(1) “And named thee Genesee,” &c.

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

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

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

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

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

Drawn by Ch. Bodmer      Engd by Rawdon, Wright & Hatch

Mandan Women
Engraved Expressly for Graham’s Magazine


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

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





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

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

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

“Yes, many.”

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

“With all my heart.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The child looked up but evinced no fear.

“Come here, pretty one.”

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

“What is your name, little one?”

“Nina: What is yours?”

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

“Mamma. What is yours?”

“What is her other name beside mamma?”

“Papa calls her Agnes,” lisped the child.

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

“Tell me the name of yours first.”

“I have no papa, little one.”

“No papa!”

“None, little Nina; he is dead.”

“Dead! What does that mean?”

“Nina, where do you live?”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Perfectly,” replied Frank.

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

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

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

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

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

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


“Yes. My husband.”

“True. I had forgotten.”

“But you will come again?”

Frank smiled a bon soir, and went home feeling as he never felt before. He did not own to himself he was in love, but he did own she was a most lovely creation.

Clara rallied him next morning on his silence.

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

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

“In what shape did it come?”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Very,” quietly responded Clara.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Mamma, what is love?”

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

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

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

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

“What, Clara?”

“Where are you wandering?”

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

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

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

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

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

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

Miss Laura Linwood giggled and said nothing.

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

Kate and George agreed with Edward, viz., that love was love.

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

The child was right.

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

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

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

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

“What, off again, my brother?”

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

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

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

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

“What! are you going? Where?”

“To—to Lapland.”


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Francis Beverly went. . . . .

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

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

“Do you know, Mr. Bev—”

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

“Frank,” repeated the soft voice of Nina.

“What were you going to say?”

“Oh, I have forgotten.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“Which way to-day, dear Nina?”

“Which ever way Zephyr takes.”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


“Well what, good Sprite?”

“Is that all?”

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

“I may be allowed to criticise?”


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


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

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

“What became of Edward and Clara?”

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

“Frank’s mother?”

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

“Kate and George?”

“Were united in the holy bands of wedlock.”

“The Miss Linwoods?”

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

“Was Edward a Beverly?”


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

“Nina—I have forgotten what.”


“Any thing more, good Sprite?”

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

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



Ay, now I am in Arden; the more fool

I; when I was at home I was in a better place; but

Travelers must be content.    As You Like It.




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

(Continued from page 228.)


  Thou art the same, eternal sea!

  The earth has many shapes and forms,

  Of hill and valley, flower and tree;

  Fields that the fervid noontide warms,

  Or winter’s rugged grasp deforms,

  Or bright with autumn’s golden store;

  Thou coverest up thy face with storms,

  Or smilest serene,—but still thy roar

And dashing foam go up to vex the sea-beat shore.


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“He’s a willian!” muttered Jack Tier.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

[To be continued.


Gentle as Aurora’s dawning,

  Ere she wakes the blushing day,

Broke the light of girlhood’s morning

  O’er her bright exulting way:

All her hopes were buoyant—glowing;

  Rapture plumed the winged hours;

And, with mirth and music flowing,

  Every foot-print filled with flowers.


Such was E—’s spring-day dreaming

  As her path, through smiles and tears,

Beckoned her to visions beaming

  On the front of after years:

O’er her form while Time was breathing

  All of Beauty’s affluence now,

Grace and loveliness were wreathing

  Garlands round her sunny brow.


’Midst her tresses archly smiling,

  Love, the wily urchin, played;

Through her eyes he peered beguiling,

  Round her lips he ever strayed:

In each limb, o’er every feature,

  Unrestrained he seemed to move,

Till at length the peerless creature

  Yielded all her soul to love!


Again her bark is on the billow,

  Where the pageant Pleasure glides;

Not a thought disturbs her pillow

  As she skims its sparkling tides:

Not a shade of earthly sorrow

  Dims the wonder of her eye,

While its lustre seems to borrow

  Radiance from tranquillity!


Still, at times, a touch of sadness

  In its calm expressive beam

Strives to pale the light of gladness

  That illumed her early dream:

And ’tis said she’s lost to feeling⁠—

  Spurning Nature’s high behest:

Ne’er by look or word revealing

  Aught of passion in her breast!


Nay! though summer’s pride may wither;

  Azure skies may lose their blue,

And the bee no longer gather

  From the flower the honey-dew;

In her world of bright emotion,

  Woman’s heart must beat the same,

Cherishing some deep devotion

  With a pure undying flame!





I stood beside the moaning sea one bright autumnal day,

And careless as a singing-bird whiled golden hours away;

Above me was a sunny sky, the winds were hushed to rest,

Gently the waves arose and fell, upon old ocean’s breast.


I gazed into the blue above and saw the sun’s rich glow,

I turned, and saw another sun gleam in the blue below,

One fleecy cloud like fairy robe upon the air did ride,

One little cloud, its own fair mate, sailed o’er the glassy tide.


A bright plumed bird was in the sky, its glitt’ring pinions free,

Another tiny bird I saw, for in the azure sea,

Down flew the one, the other up from ocean’s coral floor,

They kissed, then lightly flew away, and they were seen no more.


I almost thought a mermaid’s form would greet my eager view,

That water nymphs would rise and dance upon the waves so blue,

Or that some little fairy queen, with all her elfin train,

Would come and hold their festivals upon the sunlit main.


As on that sunny beach I stood, I fancied I could hear

Their voices low and musical, their silvery laughter clear;

I almost wished myself a fay, that I might join their throng,

To laugh, and dance, and dive with them, and sing the merry song.


I wished I had a little boat—a tiny painted oar,

That I might float upon the sea, far from that sandy shore,

Far, far away, until no sight would meet my kindling eye,

Save the blue ocean at my feet, and the blue boundless sky.


Far off, as far as eye could see, the white-sailed ships did glide

Like spirits o’er the bounding deep, in glory and in pride,

Like light clouds on the ocean’s breast these vessels seemed to be,

For thousand times ten thousand waves rolled between them and me.


O pleasant, pleasant were the hours I spent upon that shore,

Their memory within my heart will linger evermore,

Ay, they will live within this heart among the bright and fair,

The beautiful and sunny things which I have garnered there.





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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

Of course!

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“No depth of thought or strength of expression.”

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

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

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

“But our tastes, ’Bel—if there were nothing else in the way⁠—”

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

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

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

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

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

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

(“My gentle boy, remember this

Is nothing but a dream.”)

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

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

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

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

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

“And—can I go alone?”

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

“ ’Ve cab?” “carriage?” “cab?” It was like being amid a troop of yelling savages; I could bear it no longer, and I pronounced “yes!” with something between a shriek and a howl. On the instant, together went a half dozen bent heads with a tremendous thump; five recoiled—not speaking very gently—and left my trunk the prey of one, who was probably superior to the others in hardness of skull. I was very glad to escape that test of equality, at least. The man whisked my trunk lightly over his shoulder, took my carpet-bag in hand, and strode away. If I should lose sight of him! He went very fast, and my trembling limbs were nearly helpless. Then all the men looked alike; all had trunks on their shoulders, and carpet-bags in their hands, and all had very funny caps, and very red ears, so—if I should lose sight of him!—If he should carry off my trunk! was my next practice in the use of the mood subjunctive. (Lest it should be thought that ladies are subject to such fears, which everybody knows would be, like mine of the cabman, a wrongful suspicion, I must again remind the reader that this is only a dream.) If he should carry off my trunk! There was something alarming in the supposition; I was sufficiently fatigued and excited before; my limbs were trembling, my face burning, and my heart fluttering; I gave a bound forward and—fell headlong. I heard a coarse burst of laughter, and thought of all those red, bloated faces turned toward me; and then my dream became a kind of nightmare, and so ended or changed.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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





’Tis sweet to think that spirits pure and holy,

  Are often hovering round the pilgrim here,

To banish thoughts of grief and melancholy,

  And bid the trembling heart forget to fear.


Bright angel forms, on soft and airy pinions,

  Like carrier birds, the messengers of love,

Leave the fair precincts of the blest dominions,

  With choicest favors from the world above.


They come, and give to solitude its pleasures,

  And throw a hallowed charm around the heart;

Bear up the thoughts to heaven’s unfading treasures,

  Where kindred spirits meet no more to part.


They come, from those celestial hills descending,

  Sent by the bounteous Ruler of the skies;

We feel their presence with our spirits blending,

  When evening orisons to heaven arise.


They come, when o’er the sorrowing heart is stealing

  The wasting blight of earth’s consuming wo;

They come, a ray of heavenly light revealing,

  Amidst the darkness of our path below.


They come to dry the mourner’s fount of sadness,

  To pour their blessings on the drooping head;

And bid the soul awake to hope and gladness,

  Along the vistas of the future spread.


The mother, whose beloved infant slumbers,

  Cold, in the silent chamber of the tomb,

Oft hears its pleasing voice, like seraph’s numbers,

  Fall on her ear amidst surrounding gloom.


The lonely orphan, by the world forsaken,

  Oft seems the kindness of the dead to share;

And feels a thrill of new-born joy awaken,

  As if embraced with fond, parental care.


The saddened lover, and the joyless maiden,

  Stript of their cherished ones by death’s chill hand,

Commune with their returning spirits, laden

  With love undying from the glorious land.


Joy for the mission of those guileless creatures⁠—

  That Heaven to us such guardians should send;

Oh, wear they not the well-remembered features

  Of many an early loved and long lost friend?


Ye sainted forms of dearest ones departed,

  Methinks I hear your music in the breeze;

And oft, ’mid scenes of sadness, lonely-hearted,

  My spirit’s eye your joyful presence sees.


Still, still around my chequered pathway hover⁠—

  ’Tis sweet to hold communion with the pure;

And welcome me at last, when life is over,

  Where love and joy eternal shall endure!


VELVET DUCK. (Oidemia fusca. Fleming.)

Another of the family of the Anatidæ, common to the waters of the Chesapeake, is the Velvet Duck. This species, like the Scoter Duck, with which it is often confounded, feeds entirely upon shell-fish, which it procures by diving. Though the flesh of the old birds has a rank, fishy flavor, they are much sought after in some parts of the country; and the young birds, whose flesh affords better eating, meet with a ready sale in our markets. The Velvet Duck is distinguished from the other dark species of the sub-genus Oidemia, by the name of the White-winged Coot. The Velvet Duck is nearly related to the Black, or Surf Duck, which breeds along the shores of Hudson’s Bay, and extends its migrations as far south as Florida. Its flesh is remarkably red and dark when cooked, is fishy, and has little to recommend it; the young birds are better flavored, but the whole are of little consequence as game. Commonly associated with the Velvet Duck is another kindred species, the Scoter. They are common in the bay and sounds near New York, and in the Chesapeake. Like the American Scoter and the Velvet Duck, their flesh has a rank and oily taste—the young birds only being considered palatable by epicures. All these fishy flavored birds, in the times when the use of flesh was prohibited with great strictness during Lent, were decided by the ecclesiastical authorities to be a sort of fish which might be eaten with impunity. They all have the bill broad and gibbous above the nostrils; its margins dilated; camelliform teeth, coarse; the nostrils large and elevated, and nearly in the middle of the bill; the tail numbers fourteen feathers. The prevailing color of the plumage is black in the males, in the females brown. They do not come much upon the fresh waters, but keep the shores of the sea, and find great part of their food by diving. Their breeding places are not much known, but it is supposed that they resort far to the northward. Most of them are common to the northern parts of both hemispheres.

THE SUMMER OR WOOD DUCK. (Anas Sponsa. Wilson.)

Linnæus has justly conferred upon this most beautiful of all the species of Duck the name of Sponsa, or the Bride. The name of Summer Duck it has derived from the circumstance of its remaining with us all the summer; and its habit of breeding in hollow trees, has gained for it the appellation of Wood Duck. It rarely visits the sea-shore, or salt marshes; its favorite haunts being the solitary, deep, and muddy creeks, ponds, and mill-dams of the interior, making its nest in old trees that overhang the water, and carrying its young to the ground in its bill. The food of this duck consists principally of acorns, seeds of the wild oats, and insects. Their flesh is inferior to that of the Blue-Winged Teal; and they are not uncommon in the market of Philadelphia. Latham says that they are often kept in European Menageries, and will breed there. Wilson, from whose account we have extracted the above statements, furnishes a description of the plumage of this duck, which we subjoin, as it is so exceedingly accurate as not to admit of any improvement. The Wood Duck is nineteen inches in length, and two feet four in extent; bill red, margined with black; a spot of black lies between the nostrils, reaching nearly to the tip, which is also of the same color, and furnished with a large hooked nail; irides, orange red; front crown, and pendent crest, rich glossy bronze green, ending in violet, elegantly marked with a line of pure white running from upper mandible over the eye, and with another band of white proceeding from behind the eye, both mingling their long, pendent plumes with the green and violet ones, producing a rich effect; cheeks and sides of the upper neck, violet; chin, throat, and collar round the neck, pure white, curving up in the form of a crescent nearly to the posterior part of the eye; the white collar is bounded below with black; breast, dark violet brown, marked on the fore part with minute triangular spots of white, increasing in size until they spread into the white of the belly; each side of the breast is bounded by a large crescent, and again by a broader one of deep black; sides under the wings thickly and beautifully marked with fine undulating parallel lines of black, on a ground of yellowish-drab; the flanks are ornamented with broad alternate semicircular bands of black and white; sides of the vent rich, light violet; tail-coverts, long, of a hair-like texture at the sides, over which they descend, and of a deep black, glossed with green; back, dusky-bronze, reflecting green; scapulars, black; tail tapering, dark, glossy-green above, below, dusky; primaries, dusky, silvery-hoary without, tipped with violet blue; secondaries, greenish-blue, tipped with white; wing-coverts, violet blue, tipped with black; vent, dusky; legs and feet, yellowish-red; claws, strong and hooked.

AMERICAN TEAL. (Anas Crecca. Wilson.)

The Green-Winged, or American Teal, (Anas Crecca, Wilson,) has received the name of American Teal from the naturalists of Europe, as being a distinct species from their own, an error exposed in a satisfactory manner by Wilson. Like the Summer Duck, it prefers fresh water, and frequents ponds, marshes, and the reedy shores of creeks and rivers. It is very abundant among the rice plantations of the Southern States; and its flesh is accounted excellent food. It is said to breed in Hudson’s Bay, and to have from five to seven young at a time. It is known, according to Latham and Bewick, to build in France and England, but, so far as we know, it does not breed in the United States. The Common Teal is so highly esteemed in England as to bring five shillings a pound in the London market. We believe that as our sportsmen become in a greater degree scientific naturalists, an advance which cannot be much longer delayed in this progressive age, the highly interesting class of the Anatidæ will become accurately known, the concealment with which it has hitherto been suffered to cloak its habits and its history, will be torn away, and the artifices of the naturalists exposed, who are far too prone, when unable to point out the proper locality of any duck, at any season, to “send it to Siberia,” and put it into sort of Arctic parchment. Thus with many of the ducks, but of those that have been said to rear their broods in the inhospitable climes of the north, very many have never been seen there; and we are greatly inclined to believe that many described as winter visitants are resident birds, passing the summer dispersedly, and in places where they have but little chance of being seen. After the pairing time, the males are peculiarly retired and silent; and the close sitting females do not come abroad until they are able to launch their young ducklings upon that element of which they are in future to be so much the ornament.


The Life of Napoleon Buonaparte. By William Hazlitt. New York: Wiley & Putnam. 6 Parts, 12mo.

Hazlitt never mistook his powers more than when he aspired to write history and biography. As a critic and essayist his brilliancy and acuteness compensate, in a considerable degree, for his bitterness and prejudice; but as a historian, his faults of mind and disposition are too glaringly evident to pass without rebuke. He could not have selected a subject where his unfitness was more apparent than that of Napoleon. His admiration of the “child and champion of the Revolution,” and his hatred of the established governments of Europe, amounted to a disease. His production, therefore, though containing many striking thoughts, and some splendid composition, reads more like a vigorous party pamphlet than an impartial history. Every thing is seen through a distorting medium of rage and prejudice. The political sins of the monarchs he condemns and inveighs against, were of the same kind which Napoleon himself had no scruple in committing, and we see no reason why an usurper of superior power and abilities, should be puffed for the same crimes for which his adversaries are hooted at. Falsehood and perfidy should be especially branded when they are committed by apostate patriots, and champions of the rights of man. It is well known that Napoleon, among the many “infirmities” of his genius, was one of the greatest liars that ever existed. He not only disregarded truth, but had a contempt for it. One would suppose that such a quality as this ought to give a slightly dark shade to his character, even as delineated by a servile biographer. But Hazlitt’s faith in his hero is proof against all sense and propriety; and, in the name of democracy, he baptizes the most tyrannical and infamous acts committed by the most despotic of modern sovereigns.

This book resembles Carlyle’s Cromwell in its object—and its object is detestable. If history is to be written to any good purpose, the historian must not adopt the passions of the time he describes as the principles by which he judges of persons and events. History, written on the model of Hazlitt or Carlyle, would become more corrupting than the most licentious novels. Men of great abilities, loaded though they be with offences against human nature, would be held up as appropriate examples; and every ambitious politician would be practically told, that the way to win the gratitude of posterity was to trample on the rights of the governed, and violate every principle of legislation and morals. No historian of any acuteness can be at a loss for plausible excuses for crimes if his love for the criminal exceeds his love for justice and truth. The course by which Carlyle makes Cromwell out the wisest and most religious of men, and reconciles morality with massacre, might be advantageously employed to extenuate the offences of many an unfortunate gentleman whom society exhibits on a gallows, or employs in the business of pounding stone in its prisons. There are already too many temptations in the way of selfish ambition to make it desirable that historians should add another.

American Comedies. By James K. Paulding and William Irving Paulding. Phila.: Carey & Hart. 1 vol. 12mo.

This volume contains four comedies, the first of which, entitled “The Bucktails, or Americans in England,” is the production of James K. Paulding, and the remaining three of W. I. Paulding, a young man scarcely one-and-twenty. “The Bucktails” was written shortly after the last war with England. The sentiment of the play, and a good portion of the humor, are somewhat old. The ignorance of the English characters is somewhat overcharged, and the nationality of the American too obtrusively impertinent. The fun of the piece is apt to run either into mere caricature or jokes “which no young lady should read.” There is, however, with many defects in plot and characterization, considerable merit in the dialogue, which is sharp, brisk, and terse, and explodes at times, like a series of percussion caps. The last act is very clumsy, and the patches of blank verse put into the mouths of Frank and Jane, positively ridiculous. We are surprised that Mr. Paulding did not re-write the play, and prune it of many obvious absurdities. It contains a great deal that is excellent.

The remaining comedies are “The Noble Exile,” “Madmen All,” and “Antipathies, or The Enthusiasts by the Ears.” They are the production of a young man of evident talent, and give promise of much excellence in the department of literature to which he has devoted his powers; but they are crude in their present shape, and many of the faults and follies they satirize have been repeatedly ridiculed in the same way. We should judge, also, that the writer’s favorite author was Ben Jonson—a bad model, though a man of great talents and remarkable character. The most laughable piece of comic writing in the plays, is the second scene in the second act of Madmen All, in which Phil, assuming the character of a Vicksburg “screamer,” bamboozles an Englishman with stories of the character and manners of the South and West. Phil is asked what were his sensations on being blown up in a Mississippi steamer, and he replies—“Why, sir, it is the pleasantest and most elevating feeling you can imagine. May I be scalped, sir, if it is not just like being kicked into chaos. No man, sir, knows what the sublimity of life is until he has had a biler burst under him.” The whole scene is exceedingly spirited and effective. Indeed, Mr. Paulding wants but culture and practice to make a good dramatist. The present volume is rather an indication than an exponent of his capacity. He does individual scenes well, and here and there hits off a character happily; but he does not so combine his plot and personages as to produce an artistical effect upon the mind.

History of the Roman Republic. By J. Michelet. Translated by William Hazlitt. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 12mo.

In this work Michelet displays his usual qualities of style, with, perhaps, more condensation of remark and peremptoriness of judgment. He never writes without having studied his subject thoroughly, and he seems to conceive that this elaborate preparation qualifies him to decide all debateable points. His intellect has some vices of system, and he is too apt to run his facts into the forms of his theories, and generalize where he ought to narrate. He states an event in language which also contains an opinion of the event. He also bothers the unlearned reader by narrating occasionally by allusion and implication, and thus is condensed at the expense of simplicity and clearness. The present work, though very able and interesting, requires a previous knowledge of Roman history to be appreciated, as much almost as Carlyle’s “French Revolution” demands a previous acquaintance with French history. It is rather an addition to the other histories of the republic, by a man of original and splendid powers, than a work embodying a complete history in itself.

Michelet’s power of picturesque description and delineation of character, and his faculty of applying principles to events, are displayed prominently in this work. His sympathy with the Roman people and their objects, is also strikingly manifested. Nothing but an extended review of the book could do justice to its mingled wisdom and extravagance. The chief defect in this, as in every work of the author, is the obtrusion of his own peculiar personality into every picture and reflection. We cannot get a view of Hannibal, Scipio, Cæsar, Brutus, or Anthony, without seeing Michelet by his side, doing the honors of introduction, and warning us that his is the only shop where the true article may be obtained.

Spaniards and their Country. By Richard Ford. Part 2. New York: Wiley & Putnam.

The second portion of this work is as amusing as the first. It does not give us a high opinion of the author, if we except the gratitude we naturally feel to a person who sacrifices his personal dignity for the pleasure of his reader. The book is flippant, light-hearted, and often shallow, with the egotism and arrogance of the Englishman, modified by the graceful impudence of the Parisian; but it is singularly acute in the detection of the qualities which immediately underlie the superficies of national character, and singularly brilliant in style and description. Without any very sparkling passages, its tone of pleasantry is uniformly sustained, and draws the reader on to the conclusion by the fascination of its volatile spirit. The subject is comparatively new, and rich in materials of interest. These advantages the author has skillfully improved, and made a book worth a hundred “Tours in Spain,” written by gentlemen with a philosophical tone of mind. There is a spirit of enjoyment in the book which is communicated to the mind of the reader. As the author, good-naturedly, takes the world as it is, the reader is content to take him as he is; and thus his coxcombry excites no anger, and his pleasantry is left to operate undisturbed.

Hyperion. By H. W. Longfellow. Fourth Edition. Boston: Wm. D. Ticknor & Co. 1 vol. 12mo.

This is an elegant and tasteful edition of an exquisite book. It has been deservedly the most successful of the author’s prose compositions. Indeed, as a proof of the fertility of Longfellow’s imagination, the delicacy and sweetness of his sentiment, and his general poetic view of nature and life, we should appeal to this romance as readily as to his poems. It is full of delicious imagery, beautiful description, and striking thoughts, and the style is richly sensuous and musical. The strain of sentiment running through the book, however, is not strong and bracing enough for our climate. Its general tone is too much that of a sad sweetness, though passages are replete with a firmer and sterner feeling. It reminds one more of Fletcher than Milton; of the “Faithful Shepherdess” than of “Comus.” The leading characteristic of Longfellow’s mind is that peculiar blending of sensation with imagination, commonly called sensuousness—a characteristic of all poetic genius, but which is apt to bewitch the soul with a sense of the beauty of things, to the forgetfulness of their other qualities and relations, and by this forgetfulness to lead the mind away from the contemplation of the highest intellectual and moral beauty. “Hyperion,” however, ranks among the first books of its kind in English letters, and might be appropriately entitled, “Prose, by a Poet.”

Chefs-d’Œuvre Dramatiques de la Langue Française. Par A. G. Collot. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 12mo.

This is an excellent French Reader, worth a thousand of the common collections going under the name. It contains whole dramas by Corneille, Racine, Voltaire, Molière, Piron, Scribe, and Berquin, carefully edited, with explanations to facilitate the progress of the student. Such a work has long been wanted. It enables the student to study the French language as used by some of the master-spirits among Frenchmen. As a collection of five dramas, also, it will be interesting to many who understand the language, but are unable to purchase the whole works of the authors from whom the plays are selected.

Probabilities: An Aid to Faith. By the Author of “Proverbial Philosophy.” New York: Wiley & Putnam.

Tupper seems to have been a little crazed by his popularity, and to have obtained the idea that he was a great philosopher. The result of this self-deceit is contained in the present little book. We confess we have been unable to wade through it. To compel a critic to read a series of works like this, would drive him into the insane hospital in a month. One of the probabilities of Tupper is, that the star Acyone, which Dr. Madier considers the central sun of the systems of stars known to us, is the place of the Christian Heaven, and that our moon is Hell. This may be classed under those probabilities which are important, if true. To use an austere remark of Dr. Johnson, the elaborate consideration of all the trash in this volume, would be to “waste criticism on unresisting imbecility.”

The Amenities of Literature, consisting of Sketches and Characters of English Literature. By J. D’Israeli. New York: Harper & Brothers. 2 vols. 12mo.

This is the fourth edition of a work peculiarly valuable to the student of English literature. It consists of original investigations into the mines of English letters, with some curious speculations grounded upon the results. D’Israeli, however, with all his merit as a literary antiquary, will never be an interesting author. His works are labor-saving machines to all critics and miscellaneous writers, and will always be read; but they are incurably dull. It is fortunate that he did not write a history of English literature. There is no juice in the man. The dust of old folios has entered into his soul, and given an arid character to every opinion and expression. We say this with many twinges of conscience, for he has spent his life in researches which have saved better writers years of toilsome investigation.

Froissart Ballads. By Philip Pendleton Cooke. Phila.: Carey & Hart.

This is one of the most delightful volumes which we have met with for many a day. We have long known and admired the fugitive poems of Mr. Cooke, and now heartily welcome our old favorites, with their new companions, in the beautiful dress which the publishers have given them. In the “Proem To Emily” there is an exquisite freshness which delights us exceedingly. We hardly know how to characterize the peculiar beauty of its spirit; but it seems, while reading it, as if we were dreaming in the delicious shade of quiet trees, and looking down upon golden valleys, wherein pass to and fro the valiant knights, stately dames, and lovely maids of the misty days of chivalry. So it seems while perusing the proem, but in the “Master of Bolton,” we have the reality, and it no longer seems. This poem, while being in Mr. Cooke’s peculiar and happiest vein, has about it a dash, which strikes us as Scott-like, and a spice of the “Christabel;” not in a degree, however, which could be said to amount to imitation, but evincing rather, a mind sensitive to the same romantic impressions. What could be more beautiful and graphic than the following characteristic sketch—or rather let us say picture, which we extract from the “Master of Bolton?”

“All heard a merry signal cry,

And a swift heron, from a marsh,

Mounted with sudden scream, and harsh,

Beating the air in wild alarm.

Then hawks were cast from many an arm;

And it was a gallant sight to see

The fleet birds tower so valiantly,

Each for the vanguard challenging,

But none went forth so swift of wing—

Mounted so boldly on the wind,

As the brave bird of Jocelind.

With winnow and soar he won the height

At point above the quarry’s flight,

And balanced in air, and made his stoop;

But the swift heron shunned the swoop,

And, wheeling aside, a moment stayed,

Just over the gazing cavalcade;

A wild-eyed, terror-stricken bird

The Kentish hawk had canceliered,

But now drove back upon his prey,

Ire-whetted for the fresh assay.

The lady’s heart with pity filled,

The quarry’s mortal dread to see,

And in her gentleness she willed

To ward its dire extremity;

With uplift hands and eager eyes,

And cheeks bereft of their rosy dyes,

Gawen, my Gawen! come back,’ she cried,

The hawk, true vassal, turned aside,

Doubtful, upon his pinions wide,

Then, like a servant of a charm,

Sank to his perch on the lady’s arm,

The damsel in her loveliness,

Made lovelier by that kind distress,

Repaid the bold bird’s loyalty

With gentleness of hand and eye.

That silver call, so sweet to hear,

When will it die on the master’s ear?

‘My Gawen—come back!’ the truth to say,

He pondered the words for many a day.”

It must be remembered that the bird had been named in honor of his former owner, the Master of Bolton, and this was he

“Who pondered the words for many a day.”

Mark, too, a little further on, how gloriously our author reproduces the iron-rattle and fiery jostle of the tourney:

“Into the lists Sir Gawen rides,

 Manful upon his charger black,”

to break a lance for his lady’s sake.

“At signal of a bugle blast—

  Sharp and sudden sound,

The knights set forward, fiery fast,

  And met in middle ground;

Met with stern shock of man and horse,

  And din of crashing spears;

But neither champion won the course,

  They parted there like peers.

Again! again! and respite none

  Will not Lord Siampi yield,

Swift he demands, with haughty tone,

  Renewal of the field!

Whereto, Sir Gawen urged to speak,

  Answers as haughtily,

‘By God! sir knight, I nothing seek

  So much as strife with thee.’

Thus spake he, and his visor closed,

  As to his post he passed;

Again the armed men opposed

  Await the signal blast!

Sudden it came, with hearts of flame,

  The champions, at the sound,

Drove each his steed at furious speed,

  And met in middle ground.

The Frankish champion struck amain—

  Struck with a force so dire—

On Gawen’s helmet, that his brain

  Streamed with a flood of fire.

But Gawen smote the knight of France,

  Full on his sturdy breast,

And driven, perforce, the trusty lance

  Through shield and corselet prest—

Crashing through steel, the weapon good,

  Lord Siampi’s bosom found,

Nor broke until the sudden blood

  Gushed darkly from the wound.

Manful against the lance’s force

  Lord Siampi bore him well,

And passed Sir Gawen in the course,

  All upright in his selle—

But with the gallop of his horse,

  He reeled—and swayed—and fell!”

“The Mountains,” “Florence Vane,” the poem of “The Bards,” and “Young Rosalie Lee,” are exquisite gems. Altogether, this volume of “Froissart Ballads, and Other Poems,” fully deserves the hearty reception, which we are glad to see so universally extended to it by the press.

A System of Intellectual Philosophy. By Rev. Asa Mahan. Second Edition. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 12mo.

This work is written by one who has evidently studied intellectual philosophy with all the ardor of a lover. The book presents, in a compact form, a system of metaphysics, whose basis is spiritualism. The author acknowledges his indebtedness to Coleridge, Kant, and Cousin. The leading ideas of these philosophers frequently appear in the work. We are aware of no book which gives in a small space, so much that is valuable to the student and thinker. We have been particularly pleased with the analysis of Imagination and Fancy, and the accounts of the various German systems of metaphysics.

An Exposition of the Apocalypse. By David N. Lord. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 8vo.

This work is valuable to all theologians, and also to all who desire light on the dark topics it discusses. It is very able, and does honor to the author’s learning and ingenuity. We especially admire the courage with which Mr. Lord grapples with the difficulties of his subject. Such a work must have been the result of the patient toil of many years.

Transcriber’s Notes:

Table of Contents has been added for reader convenience. Archaic spellings and hyphenation have been retained. Punctuation has been corrected without note. Other errors have been corrected as noted below. For illustrations, some caption text may be missing or incomplete due to condition of the originals available for preparation of the eBook. A cover has been created for this eBook and is placed in the public domain.


page 266, Frith about noon, ==> Firth about noon,

page 267, and unforseen event. ==> and unforeseen event.

page 270, posssessed of an art, ==> possessed of an art,

page 274, the attacheé, or the financier. ==> the attaché, or the financier.

page 275, the rich farmers’s house, ==> the rich farmer’s house,

page 277, they eat enough, ==> they ate enough,

page 279, enough; and and if it’s ==> enough; and if it’s

page 281, The blackberrys grow by ==> The blackberries grow by

page 281, And its grown to a ==> And it’s grown to a

page 282, baldric and the feather ==> baldrick and the feather

page 284, boddice of her dark ==> bodice of her dark

page 289, supper-bell rung, which ==> supper-bell rang, which

page 290, she answerd, “a mere ==> she answered, “a mere

page 296, assembled at Beverley ==> assembled at Beverly

page 296, relatives of the Beverly’s, ==> relatives of the Beverlys,

page 296, I am une de trop. ==> I am un de trop.

page 297, Frank felt irresistably ==> Frank felt irresistibly

page 297, sung well. Frank ==> sang well. Frank

page 297, Never sung so sweet ==> Never sang so sweet

page 300, it be Byron’s, Shelly’s, ==> it be Byron’s, Shelley’s,

page 301, captal willian, I call ==> capital willian, I call

page 303, his own arrangemants. He ==> his own arrangements. He

page 317, under the old regimé ==> under the old régime

page 317, gingling of a bell ==> jingling of a bell

page 319, raised a last screach, ==> raised a last screech,


[The end of Graham's Magazine, Vol. XXX, No. 5 (May 1847) edited by George R. Graham]