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Title: Graham's Magazine Vol XL No. 4 April 1852

Date of first publication: 1852

Author: George R. Graham (1813-1894)

Date first posted: July 15, 2019

Date last updated: July 15, 2019

Faded Page eBook #20190729

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


Vol. XL.      April, 1852.      No. 4.


Fiction, Literature and Articles
Optical Phenomena
The First Age
Impressions of England in the Autumn of 1851
Oliver Goldsmith—His Character and Genius
A Life of Vicissitudes (continued)
The Bower of Castle Mount
A Reply to Dwight’s Article on Mozart’s Don Giovanni
A True Irish Story
The Condor Hunt
What Glory Costs the Nation
Eminent Young Men.—No. I
The Game of the Season
Was the World Made Out of Nothing?
A Literary Gossip with Miss Mitford
The Two Isabels; Or Coquettish Seventeen
Review of New Books
Graham’s Small-Talk
Poetry and Music
The Forest Fountain
The Last Song
Mona Lisa
To a Canary Bird
Faded and Gone
Song of the Spirit of the North
The Autograph of God
If I Were a Smile
To Miss Light Underwood
Lines on Some Violets
The Destruction of Sodom
A Thought of the Future
The Black Huntsman
Sweet Sunny Isle

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


Vol. XL.     PHILADELPHIA, APRIL, 1852.     No. 4.





Here the sinking sun hath broken through a forest close as night;

Plashing all the deepened darkness with its thick and wine-like light.

Shivered lies the broad, red sunbeam slant athwart the withered leaf,

Laughing back the startled shadows from their high and holy grief;

Down yon dusk-pool, slant, obliquely, shoots a line like sparry splinter,

As the waking flush of spring-time lightens up the eyes in winter:

Dimming as it straineth downward melts the red light of the sun,

Darkling pool and piercing beamlet mingling whitely into one.

Fallen rays, like broken crystals, spangle thick the shadowy ground,

Ragged fragments, glorious gushes scattered richly, redly round.

Where the lazy lilies languish, one intruding sunbeam creeps;

In the arms of slumberous shadow, like a child it sinks and sleeps;

And the quiet leaves around it seem to think it all their own,

’Mid the grass and lightened lilies sleeping silent and alone.

Here the dew-damp lingers longest ’mid the plushy fountain moss;

Here the bergamot’s red blossom leans the stilly stream across;

Here the shade is darkly silent; here the breeze is liquid cool,

And the very air seems married to the freshness of that pool.

See, where down its depths pellucid, Nature’s purest waters well,

Breaking up in curving current, wimpled line and bubbly swell;

While in swift and noiseless beauty, through the deep and dewy grass,

O’er the rock and down the valley, see the hurrying waters pass.

Oh, how dreamy grow my senses, as I couch me ’mid the flowers,

Oh, how still the blue sky looketh, oh, how noteless creep the hours;

Oh, how wide the silence seemeth, not a sound disturbing comes,

Save a drowsy, sleepy buzzing, that around continuous hums;

And I seem to float out loosely on weak slumber’s languid breast,

With a kind of half reluctance that sinks gradually to rest.

Distant faces group around me, kindly eyes look in my own,

And I hear, though indistinctly, voices of the lost and gone:

His whose bark went down in tempest; his whose life and death were gloom;

His whose hopes and young ambitions fell and faded on the tomb;

Oh, again his earnest language breaks upon my dreaming ear,

And I catch the tones that waking I shall never, never hear.





Oh, with more than the pilgrim of Mecca’s devotion,

  When he looks on the shrine which his worship endears,

Is the glance which we cast at the young heart’s devotion,

  Its first rose of summer—the last which it bears;

Bright as a halo of sunshine reposing

  At break of the morn on a billowless stream,

Where the wavering shadows are fitfully moving,

  Or blush of a Peri that smiles in a dream.


Thus, thus must thou dwell on each glance of affection,

  Each token of love I have strewed at thy shrine,

When thy bosom first heaved at the fear of detection,

  And its secret alone was imparted to mine;

It is linked with each thought that is born in thy waking,

  It embosoms each fancy that softens thy sleep,

And, if e’er it be wild as the waves in their breaking,

  ’Tis the image of Heaven that breaks on the deep!


For vainly the bosom whose pulses have throbbed

  To the beat of a heart it had warmed with its fire,

Seeks to freeze the remembrance of tears it has sobbed,

  And to smother the anguish of pining desire;

The remembrance will live, the remembrance will cling.

  As the ever-green ivy encircles the oak,

And the tempest may strike with its withering wing,

  But together they bend and together are broke!


Bright star of my soul! thus united we stand,

  Intermingled in being and blended in breath,

Come fate with her darkest, her gloomiest band,

  We will bend, we will break undivided in death;

’Twas Heaven decreed it, ’twas Heaven that wove

  The tie which has bound us in home and in heart,

And this only we know, we live on but to love,

  And thus loving we never, oh, never can part!





“ ’Tis in the morning that the church-yard of Memory gives up its dead.”

Let them rise from the heart’s tomb;

Spirits, not of sadness or gloom—

White-robed thoughts of Childhood’s truth,

Cherished hopes that filled our youth.

  Let them rise a shining band

  Coming from the Spirit-Land.


Let them rise! each well-known face,

Where so oft we loved to trace

Smiles that beamed for us alone,

Eyes o’er which Death’s veil is thrown—

  Let them gather round our bed

  All unheard their noiseless tread!


Let their eyes of love still speak,

Let their breath be on our cheek,

And their voice in our ear

Murmur words we loved to hear:

  Let their spirits fair and bright

  Visit us at morning light.


Death, who cometh thief-like, still

Taking Life’s bright gems at will;

With us early, with us late,

Making hearth-stones desolate—

  Death, who visits all Life’s bowers.

  Cannot gather Memory’s flowers!



“When will your bards be weary

  Of rhyming on? How long

Ere it is sung and ended,

  The old, eternal song?


“Is it not, long since, empty,

  The horn of full supply;

And all the posies gathered,

  And all the fountains dry?”


As long as the sun’s chariot

  Yet keeps its azure track,

And but one human visage

  Gives answering glances back;


As long as skies shall nourish

  The thunderbolt and gale,

And, frightened at their fury,

  One throbbing heart shall quail;


As long as after tempests

  Shall spring one showery bow,

One breast with peaceful promise

  And reconcilement glow;


As long as night the concave

  Sows with its starry seed,

And but one man those letters

  Of golden writ can read;


Long as a moonbeam glimmers,

  Or bosom sighs a vow;

Long as the wood-leaves rustle

  To cool a weary brow;


As long as roses blossom,

  And earth is green in May;

As long as eyes shall sparkle,

  And smile in pleasure’s ray;


As long as cypress shadows

  The graves more mournful make,

Or one cheek’s wet with weeping,

  Or one poor heart can break;—


So long on earth shall wander

  The goddess Poesy,

And with her, one exulting

  Her votarist to be.


And singing on, triumphing,

  The old earth-mansion through,

Out marches the last minstrel;—

  He is the last man too.


The Lord holds the creation

  Forth in his hand meanwhile,

Like a fresh flower just opened,

  And views it with a smile.


When once this Flower Giant

  Begins to show decay,

And earths and suns are flying

  Like blossom-dust away.


Then ask,—if of the question

  Not weary yet,—“How long,

Ere it is sung and ended,

  The old, eternal song?”





It is convenient to place an indefinite title at the head of this article, in order to notice various classes of independent phenomena which immediately address themselves to the eye; and which are either plain developments of electrical action, or simply atmospheric meteors, or appearances resulting from its reflecting and refractive properties, or of obscure origin, but manifested in the atmosphere. To the former class the lightning belongs, beautifully playing among the distant clouds, or flashing with blinding glare and tremendous effect near the surface of the earth, warning man and beast of the presence of an agency able to extinguish animal and vegetable life in a moment, and utterly inappreciable in its swiftness, subtility and power. At the close of a hot, sultry day, over a level country, the igneous meteor often exhibits itself, in rapidly succeeding, broad, noiseless, and imposing sheets of flame, lighting up the whole range of the horizon, revealing for the moment the contour of the distant landscape upon which the shadows of the night have gathered, and discovering the outline of the clouds in the dusky sky. These displays, however startling to “the poor Indian, whose untutored mind” is alarmed at the slightest deviation from the ordinary aspect of things, are always harmless, and invite by their innocuousness and fascination the cultivated races to watch the bounding coruscations of the elastic element, besides contributing to render the fields of corn ripe unto the harvest. But it is otherwise when heat has overcharged the atmosphere with vapors, becoming piled into clouds of gigantic dimensions and massive architecture, which are often propelled by antagonist currents, and in different electrical conditions. After an unusual calm of nature, oppressive to the animal system, during which not a movement of the air is perceptible, and the leaves hang motionless upon the trees, while the brute creation indicate some intelligence of an impending change by their restlessness, an explosion commences. The flash is seen, the thunder heard, and the clouds open their watery store-house, a few distant and heavy drops increasing into a cataract of rain. Flash rapidly follows flash, and the interval between each appearance and the accompanying thunder peal becomes less. The pale hue of the lightning is exchanged for a vivid glare, in which a deep yellow, red, or blue is the predominant color, a variety of aberrations marking its course, the zigzag form showing that the fearful agent is near terrestrial objects. In this manner, “the detraction that wasteth at noonday” is frequently exhibited, now striking man and beast to the earth, or rending asunder the mighty oak of the forest, or firing the vessel of the hapless seaman, or shivering “the cloud-capt towers and gorgeous palaces,” the fanes of religion and the fortresses of war. Man has then a solemn sense of his helplessness and danger; and almost every creature sympathizes with him. The eel is restless in his muddy bed—the horse trembles beneath his rider—the cattle gather lowing to a covert—the eagle nestles in the cleft of the rock with folded wings—the hart looks wild and anxious: only the poor seal seems to experience agreeable sensations, for he will come out of his hiding-place in the deep, at the call of the thunder, and repose upon some overhanging ledge, as if calmly enjoying the convulsion of the elements.

Since the month of June 1752, when Franklin performed the celebrated kite experiment, by which he became the modern Prometheus, bringing down the celestial fire to the earth, the identity of lightning and electricity has been universally known. The theory of the electric fluid, as it is called, is to be sought for in philosophical treatises, our province being to notice its distribution, phenomena, and effects. That subtle principle which the Greeks denominated electricity, from elektron, amber, because the property was first noticed in that substance, appears to be a universally diffused agent, its presence having been detected in connection with the clouds, with hail, rain and snow, with vegetation, animals, and the interior strata of the earth. But undue accumulation transpires—the electrical equilibrium is disturbed; and the resulting phenomena of equalization are lightning and thunder. Thus two clouds, or a cloud and the earth, unequally electrified, tend to return to a condition of equality through a conducting medium, a metallic or moist body having the preference as a conductor, the discharge of electricity appearing in the form of a spark or flash, accompanied by a loud detonation according to its violence, the peal rebounding in echoes from cloud to cloud, and from hill to hill. Some regions of the globe are peculiarly subject to accumulations of electricity. Mr. Hamilton, in his work on Asia Minor, observes—“One of the most remarkable phenomena which I observed in Angora, was the great degree of electricity which seemed to pervade every thing. I observed it particularly in silk handkerchiefs, linen and woollen stuffs. At times, when I went to bed in the dark, the sparks which were emitted from the blanket gave it the appearance of a sheet of fire; when I took up a silk handkerchief, the crackling noise would resemble that of breaking a handful of dried leaves or grass; and on one or two occasions I clearly felt my hands and fingers tingle from the electric fluid. I could only attribute it to the extreme dryness of the atmosphere, and momentary friction. I did not observe that it was at all influenced by wind; the phenomena were the same, whether by night or by day, in wind or calm. Not a cloud was visible during the whole of my stay.”

Similar striking indications of the prevalence of electric action have frequently been observed by travelers when near the summits of high mountains, as by Sir W. J. Hooker on Ben Nevis, Saussure on Mont Blanc, and Tupper on Mount Etna. The latter, descending a field of snow, a good conductor, felt a slight shock upon entering a cloud which seemed electric, with a sensation of pain in the back. The hair of his head stood erect, and upon moving the hand near the head, a humming sound proceeded from it, which arose from a succession of sparks. Though a situation of great danger, yet we have several instances of such clouds having been traversed with impunity, when in the act of electrical explosion. The Abbé Richard, in August 1778, passed through a thunder-cloud on the small mountain called Boyer, between Chalons and Tournus. Before he entered the cloud, the thunder sounded, as it is wont to do, with a prolonged reverberation; but when enveloped in it, only single peals were heard, with intervals of silence, without any roll; and after he had passed above the cloud, it reverberated as before, and the lightning flashed. The sister of M. Arago was a party to a similar occurrence between Estagel and Limoux, and some officers of engineers likewise, during a trigonometrical survey on the Pyrenees.

The energy of atmospheric electricity appears to decrease as we recede from the equator to the poles, thus sympathizing with light and heat; for it is in tropical countries that the most terrific flashes of lightning and the loudest bursts of heaven’s artillery occur. Awful as these manifestations are occasionally in our temperate climate, they are but as a skirmishing of outposts to the general engagement of armies, when compared with inter-tropical displays. In Hindustan, in the Indian Ocean, along the African coast off Cape St. Verde, and in Central America, there is often a scene exhibited, which seems a rehearsal of the day “when the heavens being on fire shall pass away with a great noise.” Humboldt, during his residence at Cumana, witnessed a coincident development of electrical action, peculiar atmospheric phenomena, and terrestrial disturbance, during what is called the winter of that region. From the 10th of October to the 3d of November, a reddish vapor rose in the evening, and in a few minutes covered the sky. The hygrometer gave no indication of humidity; the diurnal heat was from 82·4° to 89·6°. The vapor disappeared occasionally in the middle of the night, when brilliantly white clouds formed in the zenith, extending toward the horizon. They were sometimes so transparent that they did not conceal stars even of the fourth magnitude, and the lunar spots were clearly distinguishable through the veil. The clouds were arranged in masses at equal distances, and seemed to be at a prodigious elevation. From the 28th of October to the 3d of November, the fog was thicker than it had been before; and the heat at night was stifling, though the thermometer indicated only 78·8°. There was no evening breeze. The sky appeared as if on fire, and the ground was every where cracked and dusty. About two o’clock in the afternoon of November 4th, large clouds of extraordinary blackness enveloped the mountains of the Brigantine and Tataraqual, extending gradually to the zenith. About four, thunder was heard overhead, but at an immense height, and with a dull and often interrupted sound. At the moment of the strongest electric explosion, two shocks of an earthquake, separated by an interval of fifteen seconds, were felt. The people in the streets filled the air with their cries. Boupland, who was examining plants, was nearly thrown upon the floor, and Humboldt, who was lying in his hammock, felt the concussion strongly. A few minutes before the first, there was a violent gust of wind followed by large drops of rain. The sky remained cloudy, and the blast was succeeded by a dead calm, which continued all night. The sunset was a scene of great magnificence. The dark atmospheric shroud was rent asunder close to the horizon, and the sun appeared at 12° of altitude on an indigo ground, his disc enormously enlarged and distorted. The clouds were gilded on the edges, and bundles of rays reflecting the most brilliant prismatic colors extended over the heavens. About nine in the evening there was a third shock, which, though much slighter, was evidently attended with a subterranean noise. In the night between the 3d and 4th of November, the red vapor before mentioned had been so thick, that the place of the moon could only be distinguished by a beautiful halo 20° in diameter. The vapor ceased to appear on the 7th; the atmosphere then assumed its former purity; and the night of the 11th was cool and extremely lovely. This account, with similar details from other observers, seems to indicate a more intimate relation than is generally admitted between the interior of the earth and its external atmosphere.

Among the regions peculiarly subject to electric phenomena is the country around the estuary of the Rio Plata. In the year 1793, one of the most destructive thunder-storms perhaps on record, happened at Buenos Ayres, when thirty-seven places in the city were struck by the lightning, and nineteen of the inhabitants killed. It is an observation of Mr. Darwin, founded on statements in books of travels, that thunder-storms are very common near the mouths of great rivers; and he conjectures that this may arise from the mixture of large bodies of fresh and salt water disturbing the electrical equilibrium. “Even,” he remarks, “during our occasional visit to this part of South America, we heard of a ship, two churches and a house, having been struck. Both the church and the house I saw shortly afterward. Some of the effects were curious: the paper, for nearly a foot on each side of the line where the bell-wires had run, was blackened. The metal had been fused, and although the room was about fifteen feet high, the globules, dropping on the chairs and furniture, had drilled in them a chain of minute holes. A part of the wall was shattered as if by gunpowder, and the fragments had been blown off with force sufficient to indent the wall on the opposite side of the room. The frame of a looking-glass was blackened; the gilding must have been volatilized, for a smelling-bottle, which stood on the chimney-piece, was coated with bright metallic particles, which adhered as firmly as if they had been enameled.” Near the shores of the Rio Plata, in a broad band of sand hillocks, he found those singular specimens of electric architecture, a group of vitrified siliceous tubes, formed by the lightning striking into loose sand. These tubes had a glossy surface, and were about two inches in circumference, the thickness of the wall of each tube varying from the twentieth to the thirtieth part of an inch. Four sets were noticed, probably not produced by successive distinct charges, but by the lightning dividing itself into separate branches before entering the ground. Similar cylindrical formations have been noticed in other places. Dr. Priestley has described, in the Philosophical Transactions, some siliceous tubes, which were found in digging into the ground, under a tree, where a man had been killed by lightning; and at Drigg, in Cumberland, three were observed within an area of fifteen yards, one of which was traced to a depth of not less than thirty feet. In the temperate climates electrical phenomena are most common, and usually most energetic in the summer season, and the displays are grander and more formidable in mountainous than in level countries. As we approach the poles, they become less striking; thunder is rarely heard in high northern latitudes, and only as a feeble detonation; and though lightning is more common, it is seldom destructive. In Iceland, in the winter, it often plays in the impressive but harmless manner which the natives call laptelltur. This is a fluctuating appearance of the whole sky, as if on fire, accompanied by a strong wind and drifting snow, but inflicting no further damage than that arising from the terrified cattle falling over the rocks in their efforts to escape from the phenomenon.

The rapidity of lightning, as measured by means of the camera lucida, M. Halvig estimates at probably eight or ten miles in a second, or about forty times greater velocity than that of sound; and according to M. Gay-Lussac, a flash sometimes darts more than three miles at once in a straight direction. M. Arago distinguishes three classes of lightning: First, luminous discharges characterized by a long streak of light, very thin, and well defined at the edges, of a white, violet, or purple hue, moving in a straight line, or deviating into a zigzag track, frequently dividing into two or more streams in striking terrestrial objects, but invariably proceeding from a single point. Secondly, he notices expanded flashes spreading over a vast surface without having any apparent depth, of a red, blue, or violet color, not so active as the former class, and generally confined to the edges of the clouds from which they appear to proceed. Thirdly, he mentions concentrated masses of light, which he terms globular lightning, which seem to occupy time, to endure for several seconds, and to have a progressive motion. Mr. Hearder of Plymouth describes a discharge of lightning of this kind on the Dartmouth hills, very near to him. Several vivid flashes had occurred before the mass of clouds approached the hill on which he was standing; and before he had time to retreat from his dangerous position, a tremendous crash and explosion burst close to him. The spark had the appearance of a nucleus of intensely ignited matter, followed by a flood of light. It struck the path near him, and dashed with fearful brilliancy down its whole length to a rivulet at the foot of the hill, where it terminated. Analogous to the discharges described as globular lightning are the fire-balls so often noticed, about which there has been no little scepticism; but the evidence cannot reasonably be doubted, that displays of electrical light have repeatedly occurred, conveying the impression of balls of fire to the observer. An instance is given by Mr. Chalmers while on board the Montague, of seventy-four guns, bearing the flag of Admiral Chambers. In the account read to the Royal Society, he states, that “on November 4th, 1749, while taking an observation on the quarter-deck, one of the quarter-masters requested him to look to windward, upon which he observed a large ball of blue fire rolling along on the surface of the water, as large as a mill-stone, at about three miles distance. Before they could raise the main-tack, the ball had reached within forty yards of the main-chains, when it rose perpendicularly with a fearful explosion, and shattered the main-topmast to pieces.” In an account of the fatal effects of lightning in June 1826, on the Malvern Hills, when two ladies were struck dead, it is stated, that the electric discharge appeared as a mass of fire rolling along the hill toward the building in which the party had taken shelter.

Mr. Snow Harris remarks upon the difficulty of explaining these appearances on the principles applicable to the ordinary electric spark. The amazing rapidity of the latter, and the momentary duration of the light, render it impossible that they should be identical with it; but he conjectures that there may be a “glow discharge” preceding the main shock, some of the atmospheric particles yielding up their electricity by a gradual process before a discharge of the whole system takes place. In this view, the distinct balls of fire of sensible duration which have been perceived, are produced in a given point or points of a charged system previously to the more general and rapid union of the electrical forces—a supposition which will apply as well to the Mariner’s Lights, or St. Elmo’s Fire, observed during storms of thunder and lightning at sea. Pliny mentions lights noticed by the Roman mariners during tempests, flickering about their vessels, to which Seneca likewise makes allusion. By the superstitions of modern times they have been converted into indications of the guardian presence of St. Elmo, the patron saint of the sailor, hence called cuerpo sante by the Spanish mariners. During the second voyage of Columbus among the West India islands, a sudden gust of heavy wind came on in the night, and his crew considered themselves in great peril, until they beheld several of these lambent flames playing about the tops of the masts, and gliding along the rigging, which they hailed as an assurance of their supernatural protector being near. Fernando Columbus records the circumstance in a manner strongly characteristic of the age in which he lived. “On the same Saturday, in the night, was seen St. Elmo, with seven lighted tapers, at the topmast. There was much rain and great thunder. I mean to say that those lights were seen which mariners affirm to be the body of St. Elmo, on beholding which they chanted many litanies and orisons, holding it for certain, that in the tempest in which he appears, no one is in danger.” A similar mention is made of this nautical superstition in the voyage of Magellan. During several great storms the presence of the saint was welcomed, appearing at the topmast with a lighted candle, and sometimes with two, upon which the people shed tears of joy, received great consolation, and saluted him according to the custom of the Catholic seamen; but he ungraciously vanished, disappearing with a great flash of lightning which nearly blinded the crew.

Tower of St. Mark’s, Venice.

It is a striking instance of the triumph of mind, that by the introduction of lightning conductors into different civilized states, the power of this most energetic agent of nature is controled, and comparative security provided for life and property, otherwise in imminent jeopardy, when a severe thunder-storm occurs. Experience has taught the prime importance of furnishing exposed or elevated structures with a conducting apparatus, and has sufficiently shown that the immunity from danger enjoyed by many an unprotected building has been merely accidental; for when the teeming thunder-cloud has been wafted within reach of the edifice hitherto unscathed, the delusion has vanished that man may carelessly and with impunity thrust up his handiwork into the region of storms, as if daring the fury of the tempest, and inviting down its vengeance. The fine tower of St. Mark’s, at Venice, rising to the height of 360 feet, terminates in a pyramid which was severely injured in 1388. In 1417 the pyramid was again struck, and set on fire, having been constructed of wood. The same event happened in 1489, when it was entirely consumed. After being rebuilt of stone, the fell lightning renewed its destructive stroke in 1548, 1565, 1653 and 1745; and on the last occasion the whole tower was rent in thirty-seven places, and almost destroyed. It was again ravaged in 1761 and 1762, but in 1766 a lightning rod was put up, which has since protected it from damage. At Glogau, in Silesia, an interesting example of the value of conductors occurred in the year 1782. On the 8th of May, about eight o’clock in the evening, a thunder-storm from the west approached the powder magazine established in the Galgnuburg. An intensely vivid flash of lightning took place, accompanied instantly with such a tremendous peal of thunder, that the sentinel on duty was stupefied, and remained for awhile senseless, but no disaster occurred. Some laborers at a short distance from the magazine saw the lightning issue from the cloud and strike the point of the conductor, which conveyed it in safety by the combustible material. A different result took place with reference to a large quantity of unprotected ammunition, belonging to the republic of Venice, deposited in the vaults of the church of St. Nazaire, at Brescia. The church was struck with lightning in the month of August, 1767, and the electric fluid, descending to the vaults, exploded upward of 207,600 lbs. of powder, reducing nearly one-sixth of the fine city to ruins, and destroying about 3000 of the inhabitants. The Indians, whenever the sky wears a lowering aspect, so as to threaten a severe thunder-storm, are said to leave their pursuits and take refuge under the nearest beech-tree, considering it a complete protection, as it is affirmed that no instance has occurred of the beech having been struck by atmospheric electricity, when other trees of the American forests have been shivered into splinters in its neighborhood.

For ages the inhabitants of the globe have seen the lightning flash and heard the thunder rattle; and some writers upon the occult sciences of the ancients, as Salverte, have supposed that, tutored by experience, without any understanding of the theory of the subject, they possessed the secret of warding off from their buildings the thunderbolt by a conducting apparatus. It is certain that extraordinary intimations to this effect may be culled from their writings. Pliny states that Tullus Hostilius, practicing Numa’s art of bringing down fire from heaven, and performing it incorrectly, was struck with lightning—a fate which Professor Richman of St. Petersburg experienced, while performing incautiously the sublime experiment of Franklin, measuring the strength of the electricity brought down by a metallic rod in a thunder-storm, being instantly killed. Pliny likewise mentions the laurel as the only earthly production which lightning does not strike; hence, as a protection, these trees were planted around the temple of Apollo. Columella, however, mentions white vines surrounding the house of Tarchon, the Etruscan, for the same purpose. These expedients may provoke a smile without deserving one; for there can be no doubt that trees sufficiently high around a temple, or succulent plants covering a dwelling, will exercise to some extent a protective power, and act as a regular system of conductors. Salverte mentions several medals which appear to have reference to this subject, particularly one which represents the temple of Juno, the goddess of the air, the roof of which is armed with pointed rods. He quotes also Michaelis, upon the temple of Jerusalem, to show that the Jews were not unacquainted with the art of protecting their public buildings—a position grounded upon the following facts: “1. That there is nothing to indicate that the lightning ever struck the temple of Jerusalem during the lapse of a thousand years.” This, of course, does not make the fact certain; but when, as M. Arago justly remarks, we consider how carefully the ancient authors recorded the cases in which their public buildings were injured by lightning, we may accept the silence observed respecting the temple of Jerusalem, as proof that it was never struck. For three centuries the cathedral of Geneva, the most elevated in the city, has enjoyed a similar immunity, although inferior buildings have been repeatedly damaged. Saussure discovered the reason of this, in the tower being entirely covered with tinned iron plates, connected with different masses of metal on the roof, and again communicating with the ground by means of metallic pipes. “2. That according to the account of Josephus, a forest of spikes with golden or gilt points, and very sharp, covered the roof of this temple; a remarkable feature of resemblance with the temple of Juno represented on the Roman medals. 3. That this roof communicated with the caverns in the hill of the temple, by means of metallic tubes, placed in connection with the thick gilding that covered the whole exterior of the building; the points of the spikes there necessarily producing the effect of lightning-rods. How are we to suppose that it was only by chance they discharged so important a function; that the advantage received from it had not been calculated; that the spikes were erected in such great numbers only to prevent the birds from lodging upon and defiling the roof of the temple? Yet this is the sole utility which the historian Josephus attributes to them.” Upon a sober review of these facts, it is difficult to resist the conclusion that the ancient world had some proficiency in the art of guiding the electric fluid from the bosom of the clouds, conducting it in a prescribed course, and thus disarming it of its terrors.

The subject of electrical agency is intimately connected with that of magnetism, to which this is the fittest place to glance—one of the most recondite points of physical science. The relation between the two is evident, from the notorious fact that lightning often renders steel magnetic, and disturbs the magnetism of the magnetised needle, so that in thunder-storms the compass needles of a ship have frequently been seriously injured. The magnetic agency, like electricity, has a general distribution over the earth, but the phenomena differ in different parts of the world, and are subject to periodical differences in the same place, the cause of which is very little understood. Every one is acquainted with the polarity of a freely suspended magnetic needle, or its tendency to lie parallel with the earth’s axis, pointing nearly north and south in every region of the globe. What is called the dip or inclination of the needle is its divergence from a perfectly horizontal position. Thus the north pole of the needle inclines downward in the latitude of London at an angle of 70°, but conveyed toward the equator, the dip diminishes, till no inclination at all appears. Transported farther toward the south, the dip again discovers itself, but in an opposite direction, the south pole of the needle inclining downward. “To understand the reason of this dip of the magnetic needle, and of its general direction, we have only to consider that the earth itself operates as a great magnet, the poles of which are situated beneath its surface. The directive property of the needle is owing to these poles; and when the needle is on the north side of the equator, the north pole of the earth having the greatest effect, the needle is attracted downward toward the north pole; hence exactly over the magnetic pole the needle would be vertical. Similar phenomena occur in the southern hemisphere; but here the south pole predominates, and of course depresses the corresponding pole of the needle; while at the magnetic equator, from the equal action of both poles, the needle will assume an exactly horizontal position.”

But neither the magnetic equator nor the magnetic poles coincide precisely with the geographical equator and poles, and this difference constitutes what is termed the variation of the needle. From calculation, the north magnetic pole had been fixed in latitude 70°, and longitude 98° 30′ west, a spot which Commander Ross approached within the distance of ten miles, in the year 1830, but was unable to verify the site, for want of the requisite instruments. Upon going through a long series of calculations afterward himself, he concluded the above position to have been erroneously assigned, and that the real point lay in latitude 70° 5′ 17″ north, and longitude 96° 46′ 45″ west, a spot on the western coast of Boothia, which he prepared to reach. On the first of June, 1831, at eight o’clock in the morning, he arrived at the site to which his calculations pointed, and found the same day the amount of the dip to be 89° 59′, only one minute less than 90°, the vertical position, which would have precisely indicated the polar station; and the horizontal needles, suspended in the most delicate manner possible, did not betray the slightest movement. The spot was an unattractive level site along the coast, rising into ridges from fifty to sixty feet high, about a mile inland. The wish expressed by the discoverer was natural, that a place so important had possessed more of mark or note, but Nature had erected no monument to denote the spot which she had chosen as the centre of one of her “great and dark powers.” A cairn of some magnitude was constructed by the adventurers, upon which the British flag was planted, and underneath, a canister was buried, containing a record of the interesting enterprise.

Aurora Borealis—Loch Leven.

The magnetic needle has frequently exhibited violent disturbance when the Aurora Borealis has appeared. This has led to the surmise that these brilliant lights are connected with the electric and magnetic properties of the earth, though in a manner which we cannot explain. It has been remarked that during the appearance of the aurora the electric fluid may often be readily collected from the air. If a current of electricity also be passed through an exhausted receiver, a very correct imitation of the auroral light will be produced, displaying the same variety of color and intensity, and the same undulating motions. It is highly probable, therefore, that the beautiful and fantastic meteoric display is connected with electricity; but great obscurity rests upon this department of meteorology.

Of all optical phenomena, the Aurora Borealis, or the northern day-break, is one of the most striking, especially in the regions where its full glory is revealed. The site of the appearance, in the north part of the heavens, and its close resemblance to the aspect of the sky before sunrise, have originated the name. The “Derwentwater Lights” was long the appellation common in the north of England, owing to their display on the night after the execution of the unfortunate earl of that name. The scene in the illustration is a picture of the auroral light, as observed from the neighborhood of Loch Leven—a scene in itself admirably calculated to exhibit the phenomenon; and to convey any adequate idea of its magical aspect, as seen in high latitudes, the painter’s hand and the poet’s art are needed. A native Russian, Lomonosov, thus refers to the spectacle:—


    “Where are thy secret laws, O Nature, where?

    Thy torch-lights dazzle in the wintry zone;

  How dost thou light from ice thy torches there?

    There has thy son some sacred, secret throne?

See in your frozen sea what glories have their birth;

Thence night leads forth the day t’ illuminate the earth.


    “Come then, philosopher, whose privileged eye

    Reads Nature’s hidden pages and decrees:

  Come now, and tell us whence, and where, and why,

    Earth’s icy regions glow with lights like these,

That fill our souls with awe; profound inquirer, say,

For thou dost count the stars, and trace the planet’s way.


    “What fills with dazzling beams the illumined air?

    What wakes the flames that light the firmament?

  The lightning’s flash: there is no thunder there,

    And earth and heaven with fiery sheets are blent;

The winter’s night now gleams with brighter, lovelier ray

  Than ever yet adorned the golden summer’s day.


    “Is there some vast, some hidden magazine,

    Where the gross darkness flames of fire supplies?

  Some phosphorous fabric, which the mountains screen,

    Whose clouds of light above those mountains rise?

Where the winds rattle loud around the foaming sea,

And lift the waves to heaven in thundering revelry?”


The appearances exhibited by the aurora are so various as to render it impossible to comprehend every particular in a description that must be necessarily brief and general. A cloud, or haze, is commonly seen in the northern region of the heavens, but often bearing toward the east or west, assuming the form of an arc, seldom attaining a greater altitude than 40°, but varying in extent from 5° to 100°. The upper edge of the cloud is luminous, sometimes brilliant and irregular. The lower part is frequently dark and thick, with the clear sky appearing between it and the horizon. Streams of light shoot up in columnar forms from the upper part of the cloud, now extending but a few degrees, then as far as the zenith, and even beyond it. Instances occur in which the whole hemisphere is covered with these coruscations; but the brilliancy is the greatest, and the light the strongest, in the north, near the main body of the meteor. The streamers have in general a tremulous motion, and when close together present the appearance of waves, or sheets of light, following each other in rapid succession. But no rule obtains with reference to these streaks, which have acquired the name of “the merry dancers,” from their volatility, becoming more quick in their motions in stormy weather, as if sympathizing with the wildness of the blast. Such is the extraordinary aspect they present, that it is not surprising the rude Indians should gaze upon them as the spirits of their fathers roaming through the land of souls. They are variously white, pale red, or of a deep blood-color, and sometimes the appearance of the whole rainbow as to hue is presented. When several streamers emerging from different points unite at the zenith, a small and dense meteor is formed, which seems to burn with greater violence than the separate parts, and glows with a green, blue, or purple light. The display is over sometimes in a few minutes, or continues for hours, or through the whole night, and appears for several nights in succession. Captain Beechey remarked a sudden illumination to occur at one extremity of the auroral arch, the light passing along the belt with a tremulous hesitating movement toward the opposite end, exhibiting the colors of the rainbow; and as an illustration of this appearance, he refers to that presented by the rays of some molluscous animals in motion. Captain Parry notices the same effect as a common one with the aurora, and compares it, as far as its motion is concerned, to a person holding a long ribbon by one end, and giving it an undulatory movement through its whole length, though its general position remains the same. Captain Sabine likewise speaks of the arch being bent into convolutions, resembling those of a snake in motion. Both Parry, Franklin, and Beechey agree in the observation that no streamers were ever noticed shooting downward from the arch.

The preceding statement refers to aurora in high northern latitudes, where the full magnificence of the phenomenon is displayed. It forms a fine compensation for the long and dreary night to which these regions are subject, the gay and varying aspect of the heavens contrasting refreshingly with the repelling and monotonous appearance of the earth. We have already stated that the direction in which the aurora generally makes its first appearance, or the quarter in which the arch formed by this meteor is usually seen, is to the northward. But this does not hold good of very high latitudes, for by the expeditions which have wintered in the ice, it was almost always seen to the southward; while by Captain Beechey, in the Blossom, in Kotzerne Sound, 250 miles to the southward of the ice, it was always observed in a northern direction. It would appear, therefore, from this fact, that the margin of the region of packed ice is most favorable to the production of the meteor. The reports of the Greenland ships confirm this idea; for, according to their concurrent testimony, the meteoric display has a more brilliant aspect to vessels passing near the situation of the compact ice, than to others entered far within it. Instances, however, are not wanting, of the aurora appearing to the south of the zenith in comparatively low latitudes. Lieutenant Chappell, in his voyage to Hudson’s Bay, speaks of its forming in the zenith, in a shape resembling that of an umbrella, pouring down streams of light from all parts of its periphery, which fell vertically over the hemisphere in every direction. As we retire from the Pole, the phenomenon becomes a rarer occurrence, and is less perfectly and distinctly developed. In September, 1828, it was observed in England as a vast arch of silvery light, extending over nearly the whole of the heavens, transient gleams of light separating from the main body of the luminosity; but in September, 1827, its hues were red and brilliant. Dr. Dalton has furnished the following account of an aurora, as observed by him on the 15th of October, 1792:—“Attention,” he remarks, “was first excited by a remarkably red appearance of the clouds to the south, which afforded sufficient light to read by at 8 o’clock in the evening, though there was no moon nor light in the north. From half-past nine to ten there was a large, luminous, horizontal arch to the southward, and several faint concentric arches northward. It was particularly noticed that all the arches seemed exactly bisected by the plain of the magnetic meridian. At half-past ten o’clock streamers appeared, very low in the south-east, running to and fro from west to east. They increased in number, and began to approach the zenith apparently with an accelerated velocity, when all on a sudden the whole hemisphere was covered with them, and exhibited such an appearance as surpasses all description. The intensity of the light, the prodigious number and volatility of the beams, the grand intermixture of all the prismatic colors in their utmost splendor, variegating the glowing canopy with the most luxuriant and enchanting scenery, afforded an awful, but at the same time the most pleasing and sublime spectacle in nature. Every one gazed with astonishment, but the uncommon grandeur of the scene only lasted one minute. The variety of colors disappeared, and the beams lost their lateral motion, and were converted into the flashing radiations. The aurora continued for several hours.” A copious deposition of dew—hard gales in the English channel—and a sudden thaw after great cold in northern regions, are circumstances which have been frequently noticed in connection with auroral displays.

Aurora Borealis.

The sky of the southern hemisphere occasionally exhibits this strange and mysterious light, contrary to an old opinion upon the subject; and here it must be called Aurora Australis, the southern day-break. Its appearance, however, is far from being so common as in the northern zone, and is much less imposing. Don Antonio Ulloa, off Cape Horn, in the year 1745, witnessed the first appearance of the kind upon record in this region. Upon the clearing off of a thick mist, a light was observed in the southern horizon, extending to an elevation of about thirty degrees, sometimes of a reddish color, and sometimes like the light which precedes the rise of the moon, but occasionally more brilliant. Captain Cook, in the same latitudes, had more distinct views of the luminous streamers adorning the night-sky of the south. In the course of his second voyage he remarks, that on February the 17th, 1773, “a beautiful phenomenon was observed in the heavens. It consisted of long colors of a clear, white light, shooting up from the horizon, to the eastward, almost to the zenith, and spreading gradually over the whole southern part of the sky. These columns sometimes bent sideways at their upper extremity; and though in most respects similar to the northern lights, yet differed from them in being always of a whitish color, whereas ours assume various tints, especially those of a purple and fiery hue. The stars were sometimes hid by, and sometimes faintly to be seen through, the substance of these southern lights, Aurora Australis. The sky was generally clear when they appeared, and the air sharp and cold, the thermometer standing at the freezing point, the ship being in latitude 58° south.”

The history of auroral phenomena goes back to the time of Aristotle, who undoubtedly refers to the exhibition in his work on meteors, describing it as occurring on calm nights, having a resemblance to flame mingled with smoke, or to a distant view of burning stubble, purple, bright red, and blood-color, being the predominant hues. Notices of it are likewise found in many of the classical writers; and the accounts which occur in the chronicles of the middle ages, of surprising lights in the air, converted by the imagination of the vulgar into swords gleaming and armies fighting, are allusions to the play of the northern lights. There is strong reason to believe, though the fact is perfectly inscrutable, that the aurora has been much more common in the European region of the northern zone, during the last century and a half, than in former periods. A very brilliant appearance took place on the 6th of March, 1716, which forms the subject of a paper by Halley, who remarks, that nothing of the kind had occurred in England for more than eighty years, nor of the same magnitude since 1574, or about 140 years previous, in the reign of Queen Elizabeth, when Cambden and Stow were eye-witnesses of it. The latter states in his Annals, that on November 14th, “were seen in the air strange impressions of fire and smoke to proceed forth from a black cloud in the north toward the south—that the next night the heavens from all parts did seem to burn marvelous ragingly, and over our heads the flames from the horizon round about rising did meet, and there double and roll one in another, as if it had been in a clear furnace.” The year following, 1575, it was twice repeated in Holland, but not observed in England; and as a specimen of the tone of thought respecting the aurora, the description of Cornelius Gemma, a professor in the university of Louvain, may be given. Referring to the second instance of the year, and speaking in the language of the times, he remarks: “The form of the Chasma of the 28th of September following, immediately after sunset, was indeed less dreadful, but still more confused and various; for in it were seen a great many bright arches, out of which gradually issued spears, cities with towers and men in battle array; after that, there were excursions of rays every way, waves of clouds and battles mutually pursued and fled, and wheeling round in a surprising manner.” This phenomenon was repeatedly observed in the last century in Sweden, as at present; but prior to the year 1716, the inhabitants of Upsal considered it as a great rarity. Nothing is more common now in Iceland than the northern lights, exhibited during the winter with imposing grandeur and brilliance; but Torfæus, the historian of Denmark, an Icelander, who wrote in 1706, records his remembrance of the time when the meteor was an object of terror in his native island. It deserves remark, that its more frequent occurrence in the Atlantic regions has been accompanied by its diminution in the eastern parts of Asia, as Baron Von Wrangel was assured by the natives there, who added, that formerly it was brighter than at present, and frequently presented the vivid coloring of the rainbow.


The simplest form of the halo is that of a white concentric ring surrounding the sun or moon, a very common appearance in our climate in relation to the moon, occasioned by very thin vapor, or minute particles of ice and snow, diffused through the atmosphere deflecting the rays of light. Double rings are occasionally seen, displaying the brightest hues of the rainbow. The colored ring is produced by globules of visible vapor, the resulting halo exhibiting a character of density, and appearing contiguous to the luminous body, according as the atmosphere is surcharged with humidity. Hence a dense halo close to the moon is universally and justly regarded as an indication of coming rain. It has been stated as an approximation, that the globules which occasion the appearance of colored circles, vary from the 5000th to the 50,000th part of an inch in diameter. Though seldom apparent around the sun in our climate, yet it is only necessary to remove that glare of light which makes delicate colors appear white, to perceive segments of beautifully tinted halos on most days when light fleecy clouds are present. The illustration shows a nearly complete and slightly eliptical ring around the sun, the lower portion hidden by the horizon, which was distinctly observed during the past summer in the neighborhood of Ipswich, of an extremely pale pink and blue tint. When Humboldt was at Cumana, a large double halo around the moon fixed the attention of the inhabitants, who considered it as the presage of a violent earthquake. The hygrometer denoted great humidity, yet the vapors appeared so perfectly in solution, or rather so elastic and uniformly disseminated, that they did not alter the transparency of the atmosphere. The moon arose after a storm of rain behind the Castle of St. Antonio. As soon as she appeared on the horizon, two circles were distinguished, one large and whitish, 44° in diameter, the other smaller, displaying all the colors of the rainbow. The space between the two circles was of the deepest azure. At the altitude of 4° they disappeared, while the meteorological instruments indicated not the slightest change in the lower regions of the air. The phenomenon was chiefly remarkable for the great brilliancy of its colors, and for the circumstance that, according to the measures taken with Ramsden’s sextant, the lunar disc was not exactly in the centre of the halos. Humboldt mentions likewise having seen at Mexico, in extremely fine weather, large bands spread along the vault of the sky, converging toward the lunar disc, displaying beautiful prismatic colors; and he remarks, that within the torrid zone, similar appearances are the common phenomena of the night, sometimes vanishing and returning in the space of a few minutes, which he assigns to the superior currents of air changing the state of the floating vapors, by which the light is refracted. Between latitude 15° of the equator, he records having observed small tinted halos around the planet Venus, the purple, orange, and violet being distinctly perceptible, which was never the case with Sirius, Canopus, or Acherner. In the northern regions solar and lunar halos are very common appearances, owing to the abundance of minute and highly crystallized spicula of ice floating in the atmosphere. The Arctic adventurers frequently mention the fall of icy particles during a clear sky and a bright sun, so small as scarcely to be visible to the naked eye, and most readily detected by their melting upon the skin.





Hark to the silvery sound

  Of the soft April shower

Telleth it not a pleasant tale

  Of bird, and bee, and flower?

See, as the bright drops fall,

  How swell the tiny buds

That gem each bare and leafless bough,

  Like polished agate studs.


The elder by the brook,

  Stands in her tusseled pride

And the pale willow decketh her

  As might beseem a bride.

And round the old oak’s foot,

  Where in their wintry play,

The winds have swept the withered leaves—

  See, the Hepatria!


Its brown and mossy buds

  Greet the first breath of spring,

And to her shrine, its clustered flowers,

  The earliest offering bring.

In rocky cleft secure,

  The gaudy columbine

  Shoots forth, ere wintry snows have fled

  A floral wreath to twine.


And many a bud lies hid

  Beneath the foliage pent,

Waiting spring’s warm and wooing breath

  To deck the vernal year.

When lo! sweet April comes,

  The wild bird hears her voice,

And through the grove on glancing wing

  Carols, “rejoice! rejoice!”


Forth from her earthy nest

  The timid wood-mouse steals,

And the blithe squirrel on the bough

  Her genial influence feels.

The purple hue of life

  Flushes the teeming earth,

Above, around, beneath the feet,

  Joy, beauty, spring to birth!


But on the distant verge

  Of the cerulean sky,

Old Winter stands with angry frown

  And bids the syren fly.

He waves his banner dark

  Raises his icy hand,

And a fierce storm of sleet and hail,

  Obey his stern command.


She feareth not his wrath,

  But hides her sunny face

Behind a soft cloud’s fleecy fold

  For a brief instant’s space,

Then looketh gayly forth

  With smile of magic power,

That changeth all his icy darts

  To a bright diamond shower.


Capricious April, hail!

  Herald of all things fair,

’Tis thine to loose the imprisoned streams,

  The young buds are thy care.

To unobservant eye

  Thy charms are few, I ween;

But he who roves the woodland paths

  Where thy blithe step hath been,


Will trace thee by the tufts

  Of fragrant early flowers,

That thy sweet breath hath waked, to deck

  The dreary forest bowers;

And by the bursting buds,

  That at thy touch unfold

To clothe the tall tree’s naked arms

    With beauty all untold,


Will hear thy tuneful voice

  In the glad leaping streams,

And catch thy bland, yet fitful smile

  In showers and sunny gleams.

Then welcome April, fair!

  Bright harbinger of May!

Month of blue skies and perfumed air—

  The young year’s holyday!



B. B.


Floateth in upon my senses now the melody of brooks,

And the drip of fragrant waters, far in solitary nooks—

O avaunt! ye tedious tasks! O get ye gone! ye irksome books.


Why to linger pent and stifled in this chamber small and low,

Through the casement on my temples thus to feel the breezes blow,

Bidding me to come and follow where at liberty they go?


Why amid this noisy Babel mingle in the petty strife,

In the wearying din and discord with which every day is rife,

While the full, free life within me yearns to greet its kindred life?


O, those boundless breadths of forest unrestrained to wander through,

Where the lofty pine mounts upward to the firmament of blue,

Where the swarth and stalwart savage paddles in his birch canoe.


O, to hear my ringing shout of exultation echo clear

In the woodland, by the moose-tramp and the covert of the deer,

Or where stalk the stately bison who have never known to fear,


On the broad and blooming pampas, with their fat and teeming soil

Never marred by human culture, never by unwilling toil,

Where the wild herds roam uninjured, and the gleaming serpents coil.


Or where crawls the full-fed Ganges down into his sandy bed,

And the sluggish hippopotamus uprears his clumsy head,

Where the beauty-bringing cestus of the torrid zone is spread.


Where many a glowing river rolls along its wealth of tide

Through the tangled vines and palm-trees bending down on either side,

With the orange bloom and citron, and the tall acacia’s pride.


Where the scaly cayman basking on the yellow bank is laid,

And the brilliant-plumaged song-birds call in every spicy glade,

There to hunt the spotted leopard in the jungle’s depth of shade.


Or beyond the spreading oceans, in some distant Paynim land,

Swifter than the fiery simoom sweep across the plains of sand,

On a fleet and naked barb, and wield a keenly flashing brand.


O for days of careless gladness, days that evermore are gone,

When the spirit-thrilling summons of the silver bugle-horn

Roused the green-clad host of merry men at break of dewy morn.


—Cease thy prating, foolish Fancy, Fancy wayward, unconfined,

List the mighty music rushing on the pinions of the wind,

’Tis the onward tread of nations, ’tis the endless march of mind.

Bowdoin College.


Each gentle word thy lip imparts,

  Each glance of thy dear eye,

Is hidden in my heart of hearts

  As in a treasury.


And, though but once in life we’ve met

  And ne’er may meet again,

The memory of this hour, shall yet

  Within my heart remain,


As the bright tinge of crimson dye,

  When the red sun descends,

Long lingers in the western sky

  And with the twilight blends.


Still let me cherish thoughts of thee

  Till life’s sad hours are o’er;

Think of me, sometimes, tenderly—

  I may not ask for more.







The broad sun, red, and with softened beams, rose lazily upon the young earth. The wide sea, unruffled, heaved to and fro, mirroring in its depths the new-made canopy of azure and of gold spread by God’s hand, from limit to limit, over water and land, and all the stream of ocean. The herbage stood rank, thick, heavy, tall and motionless; and covered with vast shade mountain and valley and plain; for not yet had the revolving seasons, and storms, with falling rain abraded the soil, and bared rocks, and worn acclivities; nor the breath of heaven hastened in its course, circling the earth; nor the poles left their place to rise and fall, vibrating; but one unending spring ruled throughout the year. Rivers rolled—unvexed and noiseless—toward the bosom of their great mother; and the mountain stream scarce murmured as it fell, whitening, from sward to sward, to sleep in some still lake, happy with water-fowl. Herds of cattle—of horses and of deer, the elephant and the bison—wandered, uncared for, through fat pastures, beautiful with flowers; and the lion roamed at will, and crouched in every dingle, and in every glen, and took his prey. The air was vocal with the voice of birds, of birds innumerable, which saluted with morning hymn the growing day; and the hum of insects—which all night had drummed in the drowsy ear of silence—was hushed, and folding their wings, they slept. It is the primeval age.


Chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-eh-uh; oo-ugh, oo-ugh; chrr-oo-uh—A white pigeon stood upon the lowest branch, heavy with foliage, of a noble oak, planted with creation, and arched his neck, and drooped his wings, and turned round and round, calling to his mate. Chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-eh-uh; oo-ugh; oo-ugh; chrr-oo-uh—And the white pigeon looked out upon the sea, which rolled inward with its new voice, deep and hoarse, as it rolls now, and broke softly upon the glittering strand, just beneath his feet; and back to the wooded mountains, which showed blue and misty through the air, capped with silvery clouds; and beneath the arms of the forest trees, where the land rose gently from the shore, carpeted with green and gold, and all colors of the sun woven into flowers. Chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-eh-uh; oo-ugh; oo-ugh; chrr-oo-uh—calling to his mate.


From a deep, embowered grot—half-hidden within a grove of oranges, and trellised with the woodbine and the grape, clustering—came a sweet voice, singing; not with the musical cadence and alliteration, and returning rhyme of later days, when intellect refined to weaken, but with the promptings of the soul, gushing, unmeasured, finding speech as it might.

“Call, call to your mate, happy bird, and she shall call to you again; but where is he who should call to me, in this day of joy? Erix, my Erix, rising like the sun in his strength, with broad shoulders, and a brow moulded by God! And the glory of his head, brighter than the beams of the morning; those curls which I, with merry fingers, have so often twisted, until they sprang from me with life and laughter, and clung about his neck, kissingly—why do they not dance before me, gladdening my sight? And those arms, like twisted vines, which hold and give every happiness—why are they not here to receive me? And those lips, which are so used to praise me, until I wonder at my own comeliness, and lose my breath in their thieving—why are they not here to bless me, with their music so subduing? And those eyes, so large and deep, those wells of passion, in which I live a double being, in which I see my own blushing—why are they not here, to kindle and to burn? Oh! Erix, my Erix, as flowers love the earth, as the earth loves the sun, as the sun loves its Maker, so is my love for thee, most beautiful and most excellent!”


And with the singing, came a fair maid, tripping into the outer air; large, lithe of limb, like the moon riding in mid-heaven, when seen in her full light, paling the stars. Her hair fell, unbound, even to her feet, covering half her shape; and about her waist was knit a robe of sables, which flowed downward, and concealed no excellence above the girdle. Her form was sister to the antelope, and her face, one, which Phidias would have chiseled for a Juno of giant make. Her glowing eyes, blue as the ether above them, rolled liquid as she sang, and bent the knee, and worshiped, extending her arms, which showed like wreaths of snow borne upon the wind, toward the mounting day—not ignorantly, for she was too near to God in time, to have forgotten him. Then rising, she also looked upon the sea, smiling in the sunlight, and loved it; for she was born upon its shores, and, with life, its roar filled her ears. She loved it—coming to her, from whence she knew not, from beyond the reach of space, which to her eye was bounded by the heavens, that bowed down and girdled the waters—and enticed, the robe of sables fell from her, and the glad brine received her, and mounting, laved all her beauty. Thus swimming, thus sporting, thus playing with young ocean, now floating, now dipping beneath his bosom heaving with great joy. The white pigeon left its perch, and sought a new rest, even the fair maid’s fair brow, rising from the wave, and arched its neck, and drooped its wings, and turned round and round, chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-eh uh; oo-ugh; oo-ugh; chrr-oo-uh; calling to its mate.

The white pigeon nestled in the grot, and knew its mistress, and her caress; and when the maid would have taken it tenderly in her hand, smoothing its ruffled feathers, it flew upward, cleaving the air in circles, and descending, lighted upon her wrist, and pecked at her taper fingers, roseate with health, and arched its neck, and drooped its wings, and turned round and round; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-eh-uh; oo-ugh; oo-ugh; chrr-oo-uh; calling to its mate.

“Call, call to your mate, happy bird, and she shall call to you again; but, where is he who should call to me, in this my bridal hour? Erix, my love, my life, my soul’s sole hope!”


The sound of merry horns, of laughter, and of shout, came leaping through the wood, and the fair maid started like a fawn, like a fawn tracked by the hunter, when it first scents its pursuer in the breeze; and hastening to the strand, she knit the robe of sables about her waist, and it fell down as before, concealing no excellence above the girdle. Fresh from the wave, she stood gazing, with hope and expectation her handmaids, who with nimble fingers adorned her, and covered her all over with tints from the blushing east. Her hair, long and damp, thick sown with pearly brine, showed gemmed; and parted lip, and flashing eye, the very tell-tales of passion, betrayed the beatings of her heart, her fears and her desire. When, in an after age, the poet wove this story into mythologic fable, he called her Venus, the Aphrodite, born of the foam of the sea; and the sculptor caught her as she stood, her feet like flocks of wool, the right advanced, the left raised at the heel, rushing, moving, white, and fair.


And now, far within the leafy vista, was seen approaching, descending toward the strand, a troop of maidens and young men. Crowned with chaplets of roses and the fruitful vine, they came on dancing, to shout and laughter, and the sound of merry horns; and he who led them was taller than the rest, herculean; and from his back hung a boar’s hide, and about his loins were girded the skins of foxes and of wolves, spoils of the chase. In his hand he held a bow, which he drew proudly at the sun; elated with the nearness of his supremest bliss. Child of the forest, greater than the sun, immortal, thou shall live when all of matter hath wholly passed away; draw then, thy bow, aspiring, if thou wilt; it is thy soul, conscious of its superiority, stirring within thee.

On, on; love gives fleetness to his feet. “Zella, Zella,” calling to his mate. And again the shout, the laughter, and the sound of merry horns; and again, “Zella, Zella,” calling to his mate.

But Zella called not to him again. Her heart was upon her tongue, and she could not speak; her strength had left her knees, and she stood transfixed; while “Zella, Zella,” sprang from every lip, echoed through the wood, and died afar off, amid the murmurs of the sea. Again, “Zella, Zella;” again the shout, the laughter, and the sound of merry horns; and Erix clasped the loved one to his breast.



“Now, may the ruler of the heavens and good earth so bless me, as I love thee, my soul’s choice! Closer, closer, my heart of hearts; thus twining, thus growing, no storm shall divide us; but, with equal step, we will move right onward through life, and beyond life, to gather new strength and a new glory, in a hereafter.”


The band of youths and fair maids danced around them, hand in hand, singing, “To the Mighty Giver of all good, praise. He sends the blossom and the fruit, praise. From Him come all our joys, praise. He made the day, and the night, with all her train of ever-burning fires, the fairest labor of His hand, praise. The sun is His servant, the moon His daughter, praise. He gave us the earth, with all its beauty of hill and valley, of water and of wood, praised be forever His holy name. Oh, happy, happy day! oh, happy, happy hour! Open, ye heavens! and let love from on high descend upon these two, brooding; that they may live, from generation to generation, renewed and renewing, to the end of time. Holy, holy, holy, is this compact instituted in the beginning. Now are ye of one flesh; hearts the same, wills the same, desires the same; of one body, of one mind. Praise Him, praise Him, praise the Mighty Giver of all good!”

Then hastening to the sea, they took up water, briny water, in shells, and poured it upon the lovers, and baptized them into a new life, and cast their chaplets upon them and covered them with flowers; still dancing, still singing: “The divided part has become old, put it off; the present is bright with every hope, enjoy it; the future shall be what you may make it, be not wanting; oh, happy, happy, happy pair! As ye are, so we would be; ever drinking draughts of pleasure through each revolving year.”


And now came forth the aged of the tribe, slow descending from the wood, and embraced them and blessed them; “Be fruitful and multiply—swear.” And Erix and Zella stretched out their hands toward heaven and swore, by the light, and by the orbs of the air, and by the ocean, far-rounding, illimitable, infinite, and by the solid earth, and by Him who moved upon the face of the waters and begat this glory, to be forever one. “What you receive, I will receive; what you reject, I will reject; your breath is my breath, and even as we are now, so death shall find us; leaving all else to cleave unto each other.”

The dance, the shout, the sound of merry horns, pointed to the grot, and Erix and Zella led the way. He, with head erect and willing feet, proud of his victory; she, with downcast eyes and halting gait, irresolute, resolved, like a coy maid, half-refusing, like a wife, wholly trusting, while youth and maiden, paired, in a long line, came sweeping after. And now they sway, first to the right then to the left, with measured step, beating upon the glad earth the bridal-song.

“Receive, receive thy children, Paradise, garden new found, not lost to us forever.”

“Who are these that come, beautiful with joy?”

“Receive, receive thy children, Paradise, garden new found, not lost to us forever.”

“Who are these that knock, pressing to tread upon holy ground?”

“Thy children, father; thy children, mother; open wide the gates that they may enter in. Praised be thy name, oh Adam! praised be thy name, oh Eve! these are thy offspring, joined as ye were joined, by the hand of God; open wide the gates that they may enter in.”

The grot received them, echoing; and shout, and laughter, and the sound of many horns, held riot over a feast of fruit, and the chase, and water from the brook, till the day went out and night crept slowly in, and stars spotted the sky, and the white pigeon descended nestling, timidly, to its couch, and arched its neck, and drooped its wings, and turned round and round; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-eh-uh; oo-ugh; oo-ugh; chrr-oo-uh; calling to its mate—and she, called to him again.




Ten circles have passed; ten circles of the earth about the sun; what are ten circles to life before the flood! The night is just yielding to the day, and in the farthest east streaks of gray light lie floating, dividing the ocean from the sky. How quiet the earth is; and seems to breathe, long and deep, in its huge slumber, not yet awakened. The murmur of the sea is infinite, ceaseless, and breaks, and returns, and breaks, in regular cadence upon the shore; ever speaking the same words—eternity and power. The sea and silent stars, which look down, twinkling, from heaven’s pavement, alone are watchful. How quiet the earth is! The owl sits moping upon her perch in some tall pine, and the wolf, whose cry, whetted by hunger, pierced the shades of night, gorged and reeking, has hastened to his lair. The dew, like rain, is upon the grass and all herbage, and hangs, globular, from every leaf. An incense rises, the incense of the morning, and fills the air; now known only to the wise and the poor, beloved of God. Hour most sweet; when day salutes the night, and night kisses day, to part and meet again.


At such an hour, Erix and Zella shook sleep from their eyelids and came forth, ready for the chase. Her hair no longer floated unbound, but, as became the matron, was twisted into a knot and confined with strings of coral, fashioned by the hand whose soft caress she returned with joys unspeakable. Upon her drooping shoulders, white and bare, rests a quiver well filled; and a belt of tiny sea-shells interwoven with fibres of the lichen, crosses transversely her breast, now full and rounded to completion. Sandals are upon her feet, and a tunic of shaggy hide covers her from the waist to the knee; all else, the morning air, invigorating, embraces. Thus seen, the poet of an after age, changed his story, and called her Dian, ruler of the night; and sang her praises in verse set to the babbling of brooks, the music of the wood, and sylvan sports. Erix, large, erect, perfect in manly beauty, with limbs well knit, proportional, combining activity and strength, was less incumbered than his mate, and carried, as his sole weapon, an ashen spear, charred and hardened at the point by fire. His was the front of Jove, the pagan, not yet won from mortality by intellect, or raised above mere matter, to express the soul’s labors and ambitions. And first, low bending, rose the morning prayer.


“Hail Father, Creator; Thou who gavest into our hands the earth, with its fullness; all hail! Thy children, fashioned after thine own excellence, we stand, rejoicing. Greater than the earth are we; greater than the sea, that vast stream which compasses all land, forever proclaiming thy praises; greater than the orbs of day and night; greater than the elements, thy ministers; for thou didst speak unto our fathers, and didst promise to raise the seed of Adam higher than the angels. The thunder serves us, obedient to thy will; and the quick lightning; and the clouds, pregnant with rain. In the air we find thy mercies, and every tree, and every flower speaks of thee. Accept, accept our great gratitude; and keep us, even as thou keepest all else.”

Again low bending, and Erix and Zella, light of foot, passed onward to the chase.


They skirt the wood, and narrowly inspect the dewy grass, to find new foot-prints of beast or heavy bird, seeking, with returning light, their accustomed food. No fairy ring, no shape of naiad or of dryad, no gnome, no sprite, met their pure vision, to turn them from their way; for not yet had the mind of man built up a superstition unto itself, and peopled the clefts of the earth, the water, and the air, giving to nothingness forms innumerable. Truth was too near and palpable, to be lost in imagination; to be moulded and cast anew, so changed as not to know itself; and poetry, the juggler and soul’s cheat, lay hid in matter, where God placed it, to be drawn thence for other purposes than those of error. It was not until man forgot his origin, that he sought out a new creator, even Beauty, the prime element in all God’s works, and so wrought with it, as to give strange life to all that is, and is not.

The wily hunters, skilled in their life’s trade, turn on every side, observe the lower boughs, fresh cropped, imitate the call of birds, the cry of deer, peer through the thick underwood which stood here and there in clumps, and plunged into the forest upon a trail which promised success.


The sylva before the flood! Huge, aspiring, with arms reaching outward many a rood, each monarch stood; the traveler and man of science, he whose name now fills the world, never found, in his many rounds in search of knowledge, even in southern climes, such offspring of earth, air, water, and the sun; and Australia, with its wondrous herbage, sometimes cloud-capped, stand dwarfed and small to the life with which God, in his first joy, clothed his work. The poet, too, and writer of the Comedies, whose soul was bitter hell, saw not in heaven, nor beneath, nor in the orb between, a wood so vast, so majestic, and so beautiful. Trees, the growth of many a revolving year, lay mouldering; not prostrated by the tornado, nor driven from their seat by floods of water and of rock, which leave their track seamed, as one might plough a furrow in the field, but fallen through age, and draped with moss of the liveliest green, softer to the touch than a woman’s lip. The vine crept from limb to limb, and threw out its tendrils joyously; now hanging in mid air, and now, a parasite, twisting about the trunk of some gnarled oak, adding to strength its sister loveliness; while flowers, broad and tall, with petals like masts, and of a hue more delicate than that which opens to the garish sun, spotted the ground as stars spot the sky. The air pressed heavy, damp, laden with aromatic odors, as to one standing beneath the swelling arches of some old temple, raised in the middle-age by hands whose labors Michelett has transferred to historic prose, more lasting than the stone which was to them a religion and a worship. No voice broke the general stillness, save the sound of distant water, floating upon the breathings of the wood, just reaching the ear, now heard and now lost, as a maid calling to her lover. Amid such excellence, the excellence of a primeval age, before man and the seasons had marred earth’s face, Erix and Zella hunted.


The two moved on, like gods, hastening to outrun the growing light, and to make their sport before high noon should steal its freshness from their path. So, long after, but less large, less strong, less fleet, and less beautiful, did the twin creations of pure intellect, Apollo and his mate, pursue the boar in Tempe; while the herdsman who sat afar off, upon some high rock, watching his wealth, veiled his face in wonder and in fear.

Thus were three full leagues passed over, through the windings of the wood; he, crushing the flowers beneath his feet, she, just bending their drooping heads, when Erix descried a noble stag standing upon the bank of a sweet pool, of narrow round, which, embosomed in the forest, slept peaceful, and mirrored in its face the moving foliage and the blue sky above. With head depressed, the deer had caught his own image in the water, and stood threatening with mimic war his shadowy antagonist, returning thrust for thrust. Poor beast! Now strain the nerve and put forth thy utmost speed, for no shadows threaten at thy back, but death, with feet swifter than the wind. With one loud shout the forest rang, and then, clear as the notes of bugle or of flute, played to the listening morn, burst forth the hunter’s song; for not yet had the gin and pit, and stealth cowardly creeping upon its prey, debased the chase, and dishonored with cheat and trick man’s highest sport; but room was given and a chance for life, to the course before the flood.


See, the east is glowing with golden-tinted light, and the morn calls to us with the breath of youth.

See, the incense rises from every dewy leaf; and the morn calls to us with the breath of youth.

The air floats, balmy, o’er hill, and wood, and lake; and the morn calls to us with the breath of youth.

The spear stands, impatient, by the wall; the bow, unstrung, lies mourning at the door; while the morn calls to us with the breath of youth.

Hark! The horn winds joy, and the echoes laugh, and leap, and dance—trr, trr, trr, trr, trrwhroo, trrwhroo—in circles of mad delight.

Awake, then, awake; for the horn winds joy, and the echoes laugh, and leap, and dance—trr, trr, trr, trr, trrwhroo, trrwhroo—in circles of mad delight; and the morn calls to us with the breath of youth.

Now press the foot, and watchful be the eye, for the spear is in the hand, and the arrow on the string, and the horn winds joy, and the echoes laugh, and leap, and dance—trr, trr, trr, trr, trrwhroo, trrwhroo—in circles of mad delight.

Away, and away, in a race against the sun; while the horn winds joy, and the echoes laugh, and leap, and dance—trr, trr, trr, trr, trrwhroo, trrwhroo—in circles of mad delight.

Of the strong, we are the strongest, and of the fleet, we are the fleetest; while the horn winds joy, and the echoes laugh, and leap, and dance—trr, trr, trr, trr, trrwhroo, trrwhroo—in circles of mad delight.

The game flies, scudding athwart the forest path, while the horn winds joy, and the echoes laugh, and leap, and dance—trr, trr, trr, trr, trrwhroo, trrwhroo—in circles of mad delight.

The wolf howls defiance, and hastens to his lair; the deer, suspicious, scents the coming storm; the lion’s deep growl comes rolling up the glen, while the horn winds joy, and the echoes laugh, and leap, and dance—trr, trr, trr, trr, trrwhroo, trrwhroo—in circles of mad delight.

Then press the foot, and watchful be the eye; for the spear is in the hand, and the arrow on the string; and the horn winds joy, and the echoes laugh, and leap, and dance—trr, trr, trr, trr, trrwhroo, trrwhroo—in circles of mad delight; and the morn calls to us with the breath of youth.


With one bound the stag cleared the narrow pool, and with head erect, his branching antlers resting upon his back, fled onward; swifter than the wind that, in winter’s dreary reign, under the stars of cold December, drives fierce and cutting through the gorge which, in the farthest north, divides the granite hills sheer to their base, while the song poured thickening upon his rear—sounds of victory and pursuit. Thus, with nostrils wide distended and smoking flanks, he led his foes through many a double and straight reach, now holding to the cover of the wood, and with sure eye, passing beneath gnarled oaks, and through hanging vines, and boughs interlocked blacker than night, and now, seeking the open plain, where the sea rolled inward to find its limit. There the voice of his pursuers no longer urged him on, or was lost in that greater voice to which he had fled as to a refuge; and he rested, trembling, upon the rim of the ocean, his fetlocks laved by its flaky foam, and looking out upon it, sobbing, in search of a safety which the water as the land denied. So, in the race of life, the unfortunate, hunted by its ills, with hope crushed out, stand upon its utmost verge, gazing, and find no joy beyond, till death strikes them through, to perish and be forgotten.

Short time was given, for Erix and Zella, side by side, keeping ever, like fate, to their fixed end, soon issued from the wood, and with voice and gesture urged their prey to a new flight. The game, now driven to his last shift, stilled his coward heart, turned and stood at bay; but Zella, unwilling thus to close the morning’s sport, drew an arrow to its head, and sent the weapon whirring, to glance and fall far out at sea. Enraged with such acts, the stag sprang forward, striking on either side; and as Erix, yielding, strove to take him by the horns, leaped as far as Apollo’s horses leaped, in that great story told by the Greek whose song civilized the world. Like a bolt, winged, he sped through the whistling air, when Zella, quick turning, with a shaft more fleet, smote him, mid-way, quite through his bursting heart. Upon a scented bank, deep within the wood, mossy, curling over the stream which there, trickling, smooth, and quiet, hastened to kiss the sea, the poor beast fell, and groaned his life away; and the warm sun danced and flickered, as if in very joy of the beauty it had made, through the tall trees, and around the climbing vines, and across the green leaves, and upon the silent water, mocking at death, and laughing at the spoil which changes but to create again.


Erix took Zella’s hand in his and drew her toward him, nothing loth, till their lips met; then praised her skill: then pressed again her lips—then praised—then pressed—while Zella returned the pressure with many a toy beside. Thus rejoicing in a mutual love, they sought, with slow step and halting, the mossy bank, where lay in the sunlight, as if asleep, the game of late so fleet, and sat them down to rest, and drink new draughts of pleasure, and count over the endless good with which Heaven had blessed the earth.

“List, dearest, list! how softly upon the ear, in sweetest cadence, falls the song of the deep salt sea!” said Erix.

“And the air which hears it, glad to be thus freighted, floats inward, murmuring, to tell it to the hills,” said Zella.

“And the hills repeat it, whispering.”

“And the trees catch it; and through the live-long day, and through the night, over the whole broad land, play with it, and toss it from bough to bough, till it has become a language of its own,” said Zella.

“It is the voice of this earth.”

“It is the voice of its great joy.”

“And has praised from the beginning, and will praise unto the end, the hand which made it,” said Erix.

“The sunlight hears it, and moves merrily to the measure upon every quivering leaf, now leaping upward to gild the topmost twig, and now chasing shadows upon the ground beneath.”

“See, where it streams through the openings of the wood, and rests upon this water, smiling! Yes, the sunlight hears it, and grows brighter with each draught of a music so divine.”

“The flowers open to it; and there, upon that slope, bending gently toward our feet, proud of their colors penciled by the light, stand thick—”

“And wonder, and drink deep of the strains which extol their beauty and their glory, as they extol the beauty and the glory of all else,” said Erix. “Oh the song of the sea, of the deep, salt sea, with the air floating inward, and the hills beyond, and the trees, and the sunlight, and the flowers thick set upon the slope, gently bending downward toward our feet, and this mossy bank, and the pearly brook between—upon such a morn as this, in such a place as this, Adam found his Eve.”

“And upon such a morn as this, in such a place as this, Eve gave to Adam a love new-created, unknown to the courts trod by angels’ feet, and which has raised her daughters above cherub and seraph, to do and to suffer for their soul’s choice,” said Zella.



Now let the voice of the earth’s joy, the sun, and herbage speaking, the mossy bank, the flowery slope, and pearly brook between, bold revel, for a passion, blushing like the morn, pure as the marble which grew beneath the hands of Praxitiles, without stain or blemish, strong as the strongest, weak as the weakest, even love, is here present, and rules supreme.


Erix and Zella, he bearing upon his broad shoulders a burden light—the noble game they had hunted to its death—returned homeward along the sounding beach, nor made deep foot-prints in the yielding sand. Unwearied, lithe, in sheer exuberance of life, they chased the retiring waves, then turning, fled to be themselves pursued; till young Ocean, pleased, shook his giant limbs, and like a lion by a child subdued, rolled at their feet, and roared, and beat, in his great heart, the measure to this hymn, which they, alternating, sang.

“Almighty Lord, Maker of the Earth, in loveliness beyond compare hast thou fashioned it.”

“Almighty Lord, the maker of our joys, in goodness beyond compare hast thou fashioned them.”

“Thou didst build the hills, and crown them with thy glory; and they praise forever thy holy name.”

“Thou didst fix the foundations, and form the running streams; and they praise forever thy holy name.”

“Thou didst plant the forests, and clothe them with thy beauty; and they praise forever thy holy name.”

“The plain is thine, with all its life, and, with voices infinite, praises forever thy holy name.”

“The air is thine, and within its bosom bears bounties innumerable, to praise forever thy holy name.”

“Praise in the pattering rain.”

“Praise in the gentle dew.”

“Perfume and color.”

“Form and motion.”

“All praise forever thy holy name.”

“Thine is the sea, and thou lov’st it.”

“And the sea loves thee, its Maker, in return.”

“The breezy morn.”

“The ruddy eve.”

“The strength of high noon.”

“The quietude of night.”

“All speak of thee, Almighty Lord, the furnisher of our joys.”

“And praise forever thy holy name.”


As Erix and Zella, thus singing, drew nigh unto the grot where first their joys commingled, to flow on through life in no divided stream, two boys, the offspring of their love, came forth to meet them. The elder, from beneath whose locks, curled and dancing, reddened with the sun, full many a wild-flower peeped, bore grapes, ripe, fresh-plucked, and clutching, pressed the vintage with his hands. The younger, marching with an uncertain step, just babbling his first words, caught the generous juice in his tiny palms, cup-shaped, and offered to his mother, whose lips sought his, and rested, well content to drink only of that bliss which God has planted in a mother’s kiss. Then Erix, casting off his load, took the elder-born to his arms, and recounted all the chase—the scent of the perfumed morn, the song, the flight, the pursuit through wood and open plain, the halt by the sounding sea, the leap, the fatal shaft, the crowning death, till the boy shouted, and every muscle worked in mimic struggle with the mimic game a-foot; and the white pigeon descended, hovering o’er the group, and lighted at Zella’s feet, and arched its neck, and drooped its wings, and turned round and round; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-uh; chrr-oo-eh-uh; oo-ugh; oo-ugh; chrr-oo-uh; calling to its mate.


And now, sweet friend, who put me to this task, who won my love, not knowing how or why, come tread with me the inner-chambers of my house. This, the portal, is well passed, and other scenes, and other pictures far, wait eyes which kindle, though the fire be false, eyes which flow even with the current of a fictitious wo.

[To be continued.





(Air—“Homes of England.”)

The hallowed wells of Learning,

  No wasting may they know,

But sparkle, fed by lucid streams,

  Unceasing in their flow;

And may their waters catch no stain

  Of deep and Stygian dye,

Though Error for an hour hold reign

  Beneath a darkened sky.


The Sacred Bowers of Learning,

  Be blight afar from them;

No tree grow up with serpent folds

  Entwining round the stem;

No bud of precious promise feel

  The frost of cold neglect,

And heard no solemn funeral peal

  For Genius early wrecked.


The Stately Halls of Learning,

  Forever may they stand,

And Truth walk down the sounding aisles

  With Honor, hand in hand;

The columns that uphold the roof

  Be men of noble mould,

And beauteous daughters, armed in proof,

  Stern war with wrong to hold.


The Holy Shrines of Learning,

  May no polluting flame

Be lighted on one altar-stone

  By fiends who mock at shame,

But cloudless light be shed abroad

  A guilty world to cheer,

And men forget to worship God

  In superstitious fear.





It is two years since I first found myself in England. When I was in England in the autumn of 1849, the cholera was there. A dense, oppressive atmosphere rested over its cities, as of a cloud pregnant with lightning. Hearses rolled through the streets. The towns were empty of people; for all who had the means of going had fled into the country; they who had not were compelled to remain. I saw shadowy figures, clad in black, stealing along the streets, more like ghosts than creatures of flesh and blood. Never before had I seen human wretchedness in such a form as I beheld it in Hull and in London. Wretchedness enough may be found, God knows, even in Stockholm, and it shows itself openly enough there in street and market. But it is there most frequently an undisguised, an unabashed wretchedness. It is not ashamed to beg, to show its rags, or its drunken countenance. It is a child of crime; and that is perhaps the most extreme wretchedness. But it is less painful to behold, because it seems to be suffering only its own deserts. One is more easily satisfied to turn one’s head aside and pass on. One thinks, “I cannot help that!”

In England, however, misery had another appearance; it was not so much that of degradation as of want, pallid want. It was meagre and retiring; it ventured not to look up, or it looked up with a glance of hopeless beseeching—so spirit-broken! It tried to look respectable. Those men with coats and hats brushed till the nap was gone; those pale women in scanty, washed-out, but yet decent clothes—it was a sight which one could hardly bear. In a solitary walk of ten minutes in the streets of Hull, I saw ten times more want than I had seen in a ten months’ residence in Denmark.

The sun shone joyously as I traveled through the manufacturing districts; saw their groups of towns and suburbs; saw their smoking pillars and pyramids towering up everywhere in the wide landscape—saw glowing gorges of fire open themselves in the earth, as if it were burning—a splendid and wonderfully picturesque spectacle, reminding one of fire-worshipers of ancient and modern time, and of their altars. But I heard the mournful cry of the children from the factories; the cry which the public voice has made audible to the world; the cry of the children, of the little ones who had been compelled by the lust of gain of their parents and the manufacturers, to sacrifice life, and joy, and health, in the workshops of machinery; the children who lie down in those beds which never are cold, the children who are driven and beaten till they sink insensibly into death or fatuity—that living death; I heard the wailing cry of the children, which Elizabeth Barrett interpreted in her affecting poem; and the wealthy manufacturing districts, with their towns, their fire-columns, their pyramids, seemed to me like an enormous temple of Moloch, in which the mammon-worshipers of England offered up even children to the burning arms of their god—children, the hope of the earth, and its most delicious and most beautiful joy!

I arrived in London. They told me there was nobody in London. It was not the season in which the higher classes were in London. Besides which, the cholera was there; and all well-to-do people, who were able, had fled from the infected city. And that indeed might be the reason why there seemed to me to be so many out of health—why that pale countenance of want was so visible. Certain it is, that it became to me as a Medusa’s head, which stood between me and every thing beautiful and great in that great capital, the rich life and physiognomy of which would otherwise have enchanted me. But as it was, the palaces, and the statues, and the noble parks, Hampstead and Piccadilly, and Belgravia and Westminster, and the Tower, and even the Thames itself, with all its ever-changing life, were no more than the decorations of a great tragedy. And when in St. Paul’s, I heard the great roar of the voice of London—that roar, which, as it is said, never is silent, but merely slumbers for an hour between three and four o’clock in the morning—when I heard that voice in that empty church, where there was no divine worship, and looked up into its beautiful cupola, which was filled by no song of praise, but only by that resounding, roaring voice, a dark chaotic roar, then seemed I to perceive the sound of the rivers of fate rolling onward through time over falling kingdoms and people, and bearing them onward down into an immeasurable grave! It was but for a moment, but it was a horrible dream!

One sight I beheld in London which made me look up with rejoicing, which made me think “that old Yggdrasil is still budding.” This was the so-called metropolitan buildings; a structure of many homes in one great mass of building, erected by a society of enlightened men for the use of the poorer working class, to provide respectable families of that class with excellent dwellings at a reasonable rate, where they might possess that which is of the most indispensable importance to the rich, as well as to the poor, if they are to enjoy health both of body and soul—light, air, and water, pure as God created them for the use of mankind. The sight of these homes, and of the families that inhabited them, as well as of the newly-erected extensive public baths and wash-houses for the same class, together with the assurance that these institutions already, in the second year of their establishment, returned more than full interest to their projectors, produced the happiest impression which I at this time received of England. These were to me as seed of the future, which gave the promise of verdant shoots in the old tree.—

Nevertheless, when I left the shores of England, and saw thick autumnal fog enveloping them, it was with a sorrowful feeling for the Old world; and with an inquiring glance of longing and hope, I turned myself to the New.

Two years passed on—a sun-bright, glowing dream, full of the vigor of life—it was again autumn, and I was again in England. Autumn met me there with cold, and rain, and tempest, with the most horrible weather that can be imagined, and such as I had never seen on the other side of the globe. But in social life, everywhere throughout the mental atmosphere, a different spirit prevailed. There I perceived with astonishment and joy, there it was that of spring.

The Crystal Palace was its full-blown, magnificent blossom—and like swarms of rejoicing bees flew the human throng upon the wings of steam, backward and forward, to the great world’s blossom; there all the nations met together, there all manufactures, there all industry, and every kind of product, unfolded their flowers for the observation and the joy of all; a Cactus grandiflora, such as the world had never till then seen.

I perceived more clearly every day of my stay in England, that this period is one of a general awakening to a new, fresh life. In the manufacturing districts, in Liverpool, Manchester, Birmingham, every where, I heard the same conversation among all classes; prosperity was universal and still advancing. That pale countenance of want, which had on my first visit appeared to me so appalling, I now no longer saw as formerly; and even where it was seen stealing along, like a gloomy shadow near to the tables of abundance, it appeared to me no longer as a cloud filled with the breath of cholera, darkening the face of heaven, but rather as one of those clouds over which the wind and sun have power, and which are swallowed up, which vanish in space, in the bright ether. . . .

The low price of grain, the consequence of free-trade, has produced this change: and it was universally acknowledged. The only objection I heard brought against the low price of corn was this, “The people are become proud and careless; I have seen great pieces of bread thrown out into the streets!”

Yet bread alone had not really done all this; a nobler bread is required for man in order that he may fully derive the benefit even of the outward material bread. Nor had free-trade alone done all this either; there is also another power besides this which has been operative in that general awakening, in that wholesome spirit which I perceived in England.

If this power were to be symbolized by art, it would present us with a female figure—a beautiful woman with the child at her breast, is the symbol which art makes use of, to express human love. And, perhaps, art is right in so doing. And perhaps it is the female principle in human nature, which, in the present new life in England, enables the man’s hand to accomplish the work; because from the most remote antiquity, has a male deity been chosen to represent trade, and navigation and mining, and all occupation of the earth. But, so says one of the oldest sagas of the world—when the divine life revealed itself on the earth, a divine pair came forth. In a lotus-flower which ascended from the waters of the Nile, were born at the same time Osiris and Isis, and together they went forth to bless the earth.

I saw the truth of this saga confirmed by what I beheld in England. But in speaking of this, I shall especially linger on the new proofs thereof, in the new Institutions which promise a more beautiful future to the human race; not upon the old and insufficient, however good they may be, but upon the new, because it is upon the new that my eye has been especially directed.

Let me linger, in the first place, on works of human love—the female figure with the child at her breast; because these are they which lay the foundation of all others.

In Liverpool, I visited the so-called Ragged-Schools—the schools where are collected from the streets, vagabond, neglected and begging children, who are here taught to read and so on—who here receive the first rudiments of instruction, even in singing. These schools are, some of them evening, others day schools, and in some of them, “the Industrial Ragged-Schools,” children are kept there altogether; receive food and clothing, and are taught trades. When the schools of this class were first established in Liverpool, the number of children who otherwise had no chance of receiving instruction, amounted to about twenty thousand. Right-minded, thinking men, saw that in these children were growing up in the streets, those “dangerous classes” of which so much has been said of late times; these men met together, obtained means to cover the most necessary outlay of expense, and then, according to the eloquent words of Lord Ashley, that “it is in childhood that evil habits are formed and take root; it is childhood which must be guarded from temptation to crime;” they opened these ragged-schools with the design of receiving the most friendless, the most wretched of society’s young generation—properly, “the children of rags, born in beggary, and for beggary.”

I visited the Industrial Ragged School for boys, intended for the lowest grade of these little children, without parents, or abandoned by them to the influences of crime. There, I saw the first class sitting in their rags, upon benches in a cold room, arranging with their little frost-bitten fingers bristles for the brush-maker. The faces of the boys were clean: many of them I remarked were handsome, and almost universally they had beautiful and bright eyes. Those little fingers moved with extraordinary rapidity, the boys were evidently wishful to do their best; they knew that they by that means should obtain better clothing, and would be removed to the upper room, and more amusing employment. I observed these “dangerous classes”—just gathered up from the lanes and the kennels, on their way to destruction; and was astonished when I thought that their countenances might have borne the stamp of crime. Bright glances of childhood, for that were you never designed by the Creator! “Suffer little children to come unto me.” These words, from the lips of heaven, are forever sounding on earth.

In the upper room a great number of boys were busy pasting paper-bags for various trades, confectioners, etc. who make use of such in the rapid sale of their wares; here, also, other boys were employed in printing upon the bags the names and residences of the various tradesmen who had ordered them. The work progressed rapidly, and seemed very amusing to the children. The establishment, for their residence and their beds, were poor; but all was neat and clean, the air was fresh, and the children were cheerful. The institution was, however, but yet in its infancy, and its means were small.

Half-a-dozen women in wretched clothes sat in the entrance-room with their boys, for whom they hoped to gain admittance into the school, and were now, therefore, waiting till the directors of the establishment made their appearance.

These gentlemen kindly invited me to be present at the examination of these mothers. The women were brought in one at a time, and one and all were made to tell her history and explain her circumstances. The examination was carried on with earnestness and precision. The result of all, however, was, that there was not one of the women now present who had a right to the assistance which they desired. On one or two occasions I could not help admiring the patience of the directors. Above all, it seemed to me, that these mothers needed to go to school even more than their children. When will people come to regard in all its full extent the influence of the mother upon the child? When will people come to reflect on the education of mothers in its higher sense? My conductor in Liverpool, Mr. B——, the noble and kind Home Missionary,[1] recognized one of these women, and related to me the history of herself and her husband—a horrible history of drunkenness, which had almost ended in suicide.

Later in the day I visited the evening school for girls, also of the ragged class, and heard there a remarkably sweet and beautiful song. Later still I accompanied my friendly conductor to a temperance meeting, held in the same building, and which meets every Thursday, and where the Missionary was accustomed to meet and converse with the poorest brethren of his congregation. The wind blew and the rain poured down. I was astonished, however, to see when we entered, that the room was filled with people who evidently had not much to defend themselves with from the wind and rain. The benches were filled both with men and women. It became crowded and very hot. Mr. B—— opened the meeting with a speech about the dangers and consequences of drunkenness, and as he warmed in his subject he related, yet without mentioning any name, the history of the mother whom he had this day seen, beseeching that public charity would take charge of her son. The assembly, which during the moral treatise they had just heard had evidently become somewhat drowsy, woke up at once during the relation of that story, and when the narrator arrived at the catastrophe, in which the intoxicated woman, urged on by the madness of thirst, drank up half a bottle of oil of vitriol, a general expression of horror might have been heard, especially from the lips of the women.

When this relation, which was full of strong vitality, was ended, Mr. B—— read a poem written by a working man in praise of temperance, which had the effect of again lulling the auditors—and myself even—into an agreeable doze. We all woke up again, however, when Mr. B——, in a jocular manner, begged of Mr. J—— to stand up and tell us something about “that Great Exhibition in London,” which he had lately been to see. Mr. J—— did not however, stand up, because Mr. K—— wished to speak first. Accordingly, being encouraged to do so by Mr. B——, a stout-built man of about sixty came forward; he was dressed in coarse, but good clothes, and had an open countenance, over which played a smile of humor. He mounted the platform, and was greeted by the assembly with evident delight. He related his own history, simple, but full of the warmth of life, in that strong-grained, wit-interspersed style of popular eloquence, full of heart and humor at the same time, which our cultivated orators would do well to study, if they wish to make a living impression on the people. He related how he, in his younger years, never tasted brandy, but he became a seaman, and began to drink, that he might look manly among his fellows; how, by degrees, he acquired the power of swallowing more strong liquor than any of them all, fell into crime, misery and shame; how he became converted and again temperate, and how he had not now for fifteen years tasted spirits, and had ever since remained in good health and good circumstances.

This was the substance of his story; but how the narrative was interspersed with merry conceits, which excited universal amusement, and with energetic proverbs—to which Mr. B——, beyond any one else, gave the highest applause—how cleverly “Mr. Halcohol” was brought in, and how contemptuously “the long-necked gentleman, Mr. Halcohol in the bottle,” was treated, and with how much animation all this was done and received—must have been heard to have been fully imagined. The speech was concluded by recommending “total abstinence” as the only means for insuring a perfect change of life.

After this there entered a little throng of children with joyful faces, the same whom I had already heard sing in the upper room of the house; these children were the so-called “Band of Hope”—children who had taken the pledge to abstain from all strong drinks themselves, and to promote the advancement of temperance by all the means in their power, for which they received printed cards containing their pledge, together with symbolical devices, proverbs, etc. That little “Band of Hope” struck up with their clear voices, fresh as the morning, various songs, among which one in particular, “The Spindle and Shuttle,” was received with great delight, all present joining in the chorus. Hymns and patriotic songs were also sung by “The Band of Hope,” and now and then the company joined in with the children. Before the assembly separated this evening, several went forward and took the pledge. Among these was a man and his wife. They took each other by the hand. The woman with her other hand held her handkerchief over her left eye; it might be seen, nevertheless, that this eye was black, probably from the husband’s fist.

What had influenced them to this? What had operated upon these rude natures?—induced them to break loose from habits of drunkenness—to turn from the pleasures of hell to those of heaven? What was it that had operated on all here so awakeningly, so livingly? Could it be the discourse they had heard? could it be the poem in praise of temperance? Nothing of the kind. I saw them go to sleep during these. I became sleepy myself. No, that which operated here so livingly—was the life itself. It was that living narrative of the unhappy woman; it was the sailor’s history of his own life, his battles with “Mr. Halcohol;” it was the songs of the children, the pure, dewy-fresh voices of the little “Band of Hope.” All these it was which had operated upon, which had awakened their minds, had animated their brains, warmed their hearts; this it was which had impelled the husband and wife, hand in hand, to come forward and consecrate themselves to a new marriage, to a better life. Individual experience of suffering, of joy, of sin, of conversion, of love and happiness, must be told, if the relation is to have any power over the human heart; life itself must be called into action if we would awake the dead.

I could not but remark at this meeting, how cordial and familiar an understanding seemed to exist between the leader, Mr. B——, and the assembly, and which arose in part from his own peculiar character, and in part from his intimate acquaintance with his hearers. In the same way, his continual intercourse with those people, and his knowledge of their every-day life, is an excellent help to him in giving force to the sermons which he preaches among them. I shall not forget the effect produced by his story of the woman and the bottle of vitriol.

A few days later I visited, with the same friendly man, some different classes of poor people—namely, the wicked and the idle; they who had fallen into want through their own improvidence, but who had now raised themselves again; and the estimable, who had honorably combated with unavoidable poverty. In one certain quarter of Liverpool, it is that the first class is especially met with. Of this class of poor in their wretched rooms, with their low, brutalized expression, I will not speak; companion-pieces to this misery may be met with every where. Most of those whom I saw were Irish. It was a Sunday noon, after divine service. The ale-houses were already open in this part of the town, and young girls and men might be seen talking together before them, or sitting upon the steps.

Of the second class I call to mind, with especial pleasure, one little household. It was a mother and her son. Her means of support, a mangle, stood in the little room in which she had lived since she had raised herself up again. It was dinner-time. A table, neatly covered for two persons, stood in the room, and upon the iron stand before the fire was placed a dish of mashed potatoes, nicely browned, ready to be set on the table. The mother was waiting for her son, and the dinner was waiting for him. He was the organ-blower in a church during divine service, and he returned whilst I was still there. He was well dressed, but was a little, weakly man, and squinted; the mother’s eyes, however, regarded him with love. This son was her only one, and her all. And he, to whom mother Nature had acted as a stepmother, had a noble mother’s heart to warm himself with, which prepared for him an excellent home, a well-covered table, and a comfortable bed. That poor little home was not without its wealth.

As belonging to the third and highest class, I must mention two families, both of them shoemakers, and both of them inhabiting cellars. The one family consisted of old, the other of young people. The old shoemaker had to maintain his wife, who was lame and sick, from a fall in the street, and a daughter. The young one had a young wife, and five little children to provide for; but work was scanty and the mouths many. At this house, also, it was dinner-time, and I saw upon the table nothing but potatoes. The children were clean, and had remarkably agreeable faces; but—they were pale; so was also the father of the family. The young and pretty, but very pale mother, said, “Since I have come into this room I have never been well, and this I know—I shall not live long!” Her eyes filled with tears; and it was plain enough to see that this really delicate constitution could not long sustain the effects of the cold, damp room, into which no sunbeam entered. These two families, of the same trade, and alike poor, had become friends in need. When one of the fathers of the family wanted work, and was informed by the Home-Missionary who visited them that the other had it, the intelligence seemed a consolation to him. Gladdening sight of human sympathy, which keeps the head erect and the heart sound under the depressing struggle against competition! But little gladdening to me would have been the sight of these families in their cellar-homes, had I not at the same time been aware of the increase of those “Model Lodging-Houses,” which may be met with in many parts of England, and which will remove these inhabitants of cellars, they who sit in darkness, into the blessing of the light of life—which will provide worthy dwellings for worthy people. But of this I shall speak somewhat later, in connection with other new institutions for the advancement of the health, both of body and soul, of—all classes.

“For no one for himself doth live or suffer.”

For myself, I was well provided for by English hospitality, and enjoyed an excellent home in the house of the noble and popular preacher, J. M——. With him, and his wife (one of these beautiful, motherly natures, who through a peculiar geniality of heart is able to accomplish so much, and to render herself and every thing that is good twofold, in quite another manner to that of the multiplication-table, which merely makes two and two into four)—with them and their family I spent some beautiful days amid conversation and music. There, in the neighborhood of their house, I saw also one of those English parks, whose verdant, carefully-kept sward, and groups of shrubs and flowers, give so peculiar and so attractive a charm to the English landscape. Add to this a river-like sheet of water; swans, groups of beautiful children and ladies feeding them on the banks, the song of birds every where amongst the shrubs; scattered palaces, and handsome country-houses—and every thing looking so finished, so splendid, so beautiful and perfect, as if nothing out of condition, nothing in tatters or shabby was to be found in the world. Such was the impression produced by the Prince’s Park, which was laid out by a wealthy private gentleman, Mr. J——, on the birth of the Prince of Wales, the eldest son of Queen Victoria, and thrown open to the public with only this single admonition exhibited, in large letters, in various parts of the park, “it is hoped the public will protect that which is intended for the public enjoyment.”

But I must leave this enchanting Idyll, and hasten into the manufacturing districts; and, first of all, to Manchester:

In my imagination Manchester was like a colossal woman sitting at her spinning-wheel, with her enormous manufactories; her subject towns, suburbs, villages, factories, lying for many miles round, spinning, spinning, spinning clothes for all the people on the face of the earth. And there, as she sat, the queen of the spindle, with her masses of ugly houses and factories, enveloped in dense rain-clouds, as if in cobwebs, the effect she made upon me was gloomy and depressing. Yet even here, also, I was to breathe a more refreshing atmosphere of life; even here was I also to see light. Free-trade had brought hither her emancipating spirit. It was a time of remarkable activity and prosperity. The work-people were fully employed; wages were good, and food was cheap. Even here also had ragged-schools been established, together with many institutions for improving the condition of the poor working-classes. In one of these ragged-schools the boys had a perfectly organized band of music, in which they played and blew so that it was a pleasure—and sometimes a disadvantage, to hear them. The lamenting “cry of the children” was no longer heard from the factories. Government had put an end to the cruelties and oppressions formerly practiced on these little ones by the unscrupulous lust of gain. No child under ten years old can now be employed in the factories, and even such, when employed, must of necessity be allowed part of the day for school. Every large factory has now generally its own school, with a paid master for the children. The boys whom I saw in the great rooms of the factories and with whom I conversed, looked both healthy and cheerful.

Two ideas were impressed upon my mind at this place: how dangerous it is, even amid a high degree of social culture, to give one class of men unrestrained power over another; and how easily a free people, with a powerful public spirit, and accustomed to self-government, can raise themselves out of humiliating circumstances. This spirit has done much already in England, but it has yet more to do.

Upon one of those large, gloomy factories in Manchester, I read, inscribed in iron letters, “The Great Beehive;” and in truth, a good name for these enormous hives of human industrial toil, in which people have sometimes forgotten, and still forget, that man is any thing more than a working-bee, which lives to fill its cell in the hive, and die. I visited several of these huge beehives. In one of them, which employed twelve hundred work-people, I saw, in a large room, above three hundred women sitting in rows winding cotton on reels. The room was clean, and so also were all the women. It did not appear to be hard work; but the steadfastly-fixed attention with which these women pursued their labor seemed to me distressingly wearisome. They did not allow themselves to look up, still less to turn their heads or to talk. Their life seemed to depend upon the cotton thread.

In another of these great beehives, a long, low room, in which were six hundred power-looms, represented an extraordinary appearance. What a snatching to and fro, what a jingling, what an incessant stir, and what a moist atmosphere there was between floor and ceiling, as if the limbs of some absurd, unheard-of beast, with a thousand arms, had been galvanized! Around us, from three to four hundred operatives, women and men, stood among the rapid machinery watching and tending. The twelve o’clock bell rung, and now the whole throng of work-people would go forth to their various mid-day quarters; the greatest number to their respective dwellings in the neighborhood of the factory. I placed myself, together with my conductor, in the court outside the door of the room, which was on lower ground, in order that I might have a better view of the work-people as they came out.

Just as one sees bees coming out of a hive into the air, two, three, or four at a time—pause, as it were, a moment from the effects of open air and light, and then with a low hum, dart forth into space, each one his own way, so was it in this case. Thus came they forth, men and women, youths and girls. The greater number were well dressed, looked healthy, and full of spirit. In many, however, might be seen the expression of a rude life; they bore the traces of depravity about them.

As labor is now organized in the factories at Manchester, it cannot easily be otherwise. The master-manufacturer is not acquainted with his work-people. He hires spinners; and every spinner is master of a room, and he it is who hires the hands. He is the autocrat of the room, and not unfrequently is a severe and immoral one. The operatives live in their own houses, apart from every thing belonging to the master-manufacturer, with the exception of the raw material.

In the country it is otherwise; there the master-manufacturer may be, and often is, a fatherly friend and guardian of his people. And where he is so, it is in general fully acknowledged. The character which each manufacturer bears as an employer, even in Manchester, is perfectly well known. People mention with precision the good, the worthless, or the wicked master. I visited factories belonging to some of these various characters, but perceived a more marked difference in the manners and appearance of the masters themselves, than in the appearance and condition of the work-people. At the present moment the difference could not be very perceptible, because the general demand for hands causes the circumstances of the lower classes to be generally good. But, as before remarked, the patriarchal connection between master and servant, with its good, as well as its evil consequences, no longer exists in the manufacturing towns of England. Employer and employed stand beside each other, or rather opposed to each other, excepting through the requirements of labor. The whole end and aim of the Manchester manufacturer—when he is not subjected to machinery, and lives merely as a screw, or portion of it—is, to get out of Manchester. He spins and makes use of all means, good or bad, to lay by sufficient money to live independently, or to build himself a house at a distance from the smoky, restless town, away from the bustle—away from the throng of restless, striving work-people. His object is to arrive at quiet in the country, in a comfortable home; and having attained this object, he looks upon the noisy, laboring hive, out of which he has lately come, as a something with which he has no concern, and out of which he is glad to have escaped with a whole skin. Such is the case with many—God forbid that we should say, with all!

Two subjects of conversation occupied the people of Manchester very much at this time. The one was the question—a vital question for the whole of England—of popular education. The people of Manchester had begun to take the subject into serious consideration, and had come to the conclusion that there might at once be adopted a simple system of education by which, as in the United States, every one should receive in the people’s school practical and moral instruction, and that religious instruction should be left for the home or for the Sunday teaching. The willingness to thus act in concert which has been shown by the clergy of the Established Church in Manchester, is a good omen to the various religious sects united in this work. All things considered, it seems to me that there is at this moment in England the most decided movement toward a new development, a new life as well in theoretic as in practically popular respects; and it is more apparent in the Established Church than in any other religious body.

The second great subject of conversation, as well in Manchester as in Liverpool, was Queen Victoria’s expected visit. The Queen had announced her intention of visiting the great towns of the manufacturing districts, in company with Prince Albert, in the middle of the month, and they were accordingly expected in a few days. Several of these towns had never before seen a crowned head within their walls, and this, in connection with the great popularity of the Queen, and the liking and the love which the people have for her, had perfectly enchanted the inhabitants of Manchester. They were preparing to give a royal reception to their lofty guests. Nothing could be too magnificent or too costly in the eyes of the Manchester people which could testify their homage. The whole of the district, now that the Queen was expected, was said to be “brimful of loyalty,” and the whole of England was at this time, both in heart and soul, monarchical. Opposition against the royal family exists no longer in England; the former members of this opposition had become converted. On all hands there was but one voice of devotion and praise. Wonderful! yes, incomprehensible, thought I, when I was informed that the Queen had requested not long since to have a grant from Parliament of 72,000l. for the erection of new stables at her palace of Windsor, and the same year 30,000l., for Prince Albert to repair his dog-kennels, and now, again, just lately, 17,000l. for the erection of stables at a palace which the Queen has obtained for her eldest son, and of which he will take possession on attaining his majority. Thus 119,000l. for stables and dog-kennels.

What? 119,000l. for stables and dog-kennels; for the maintenance of fine horses and dogs, and that at a time when Ireland is perishing of hunger or emigrating in the deepest distress; when even in England so infinitely much remains to be done for humanity, so much untold good might be effected for the public with this sum. Queen Elizabeth was accustomed to say, that she considered her money best put out when it was in the pockets of her subjects, and she scorned to desire any great project for her own pleasure. Queen Victoria desires, year after year, immense grants for her stables and kennels; desires this of her people, and yet, for all this, is homage paid to her—is she loved and supported by the people in this extraordinary manner! Parliament grumbles, but consents to all that the Queen desires, fully consents without a murmur, because it loves her. Such projects would otherwise be dangerous to the power of the monarch. Such projects overturned the throne of Louis Philippe—have undermined many thrones. But the light foot of this Queen—a well-beloved little foot it ought to be—dances again and again on the brink of the dangerous abyss, and it gives not way. But how is this possible? What is it that makes this Queen so popular, so universally beloved by the people, spite of the desire for stables and dog-kennels, unnecessary articles of luxury, when hundred thousands of her subjects are in want even of the necessaries of life; want even the means to secure a home and daily bread?

Thus I asked, and thus they replied to me:

The English people wish that their royal family should live with a certain degree of state. They are fond of beautiful horses and dogs themselves, and it flatters the national pride that the royal personages should have such, and should have magnificent dwellings for them. The character of the Queen, her domestic and public virtues, and the influence of her example, which is of such high value to the nation, causes it to regard no sacrifice of money as too great for the possession of such a Queen. England is aware that under the protection of the throne, under the shadow of the sceptre of this Queen, and the stability which it gives to the affairs of the kingdom, she can in freedom and peace manage her own internal concerns, and advance forward on the path of democratic development and self-government, with a security which other nations do not possess.

Hence it is that the reigning family now upon the English throne presents a spectacle extraordinary upon this throne, or upon any throne in the world. The Queen and her husband stand before the people as the personation of every domestic and public virtue! The Queen is an excellent wife and mother; she attends to the education of her children, and fulfills her duties as sovereign, alike conscientiously. She is an early riser; is punctual and regular in great as well as in small things. She pays ready money for all that she purchases, and never is in debt to any one. Her court is remarkable for its good and beautiful morals. On their estates, she and Prince Albert carry every thing out in the best manner, establish schools and institutions for the good of the poor; these institutions and arrangements of theirs, serve as examples to every one. Their uprightness, kindness, generosity, and the tact which they under all circumstances display, win the heart of the nation. They show a warm sympathy for the great interests of the people, and by this very sympathy are they promoted. Of this, the successful carrying out of free-trade, and the Exhibition in the Crystal Palace, projected in the first instance by Prince Albert, and powerfully seconded by the Queen, furnish brilliant examples. The sympathies of the Queen are those of the heart as well as of the head. When that noble statesman, the great promoter of free-trade, Sir Robert Peel, died, the Queen shut herself in for several days, and wept for him as if she had lost a father. And whenever a warm sympathy is called forth, either in public or in private affairs, it is warmly and fully participated by Queen Victoria and Prince Albert.

In confirmation of this opinion regarding Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, which I heard every where, and from all parties in England, a number of anecdotes of their life and actions were related to me, which fully bore it out.

This universal impression, universally produced by the sovereign, who, properly speaking, can govern nothing—because it is well known that the monarch of England is merely a nominal executor of the wishes of the people, a hand which subscribes that which the minister lays before it in the name of the people; this great power, in a Queen, is without any political power.

Monarchs and their people no longer bear the same relation to each other as in the time when, for example, Charles the Ninth put forth his demands, with the addition,—

“Do it, and be off with you!”

This injunction to do a thing, and then take themselves off, can no longer be given to the people by the King, but by reason. The people have arrived at years of discretion, and the monarch is the executor of their laws and their wishes. He is so in England, it is said.

From Manchester I traveled to Birmingham. I saw again the land of the fire-worshipers, their smoking altars, in tall columns and pyramids, towering above the green fields; saw again the burning gulfs yawning in the earth, and, saw them now with unmixed pleasure. I heard no longer, amid their boiling roar, the lamenting cry of the children; I heard and saw them now only as the organs of the public prosperity, and rejoiced over them as proofs of man’s power over fire and water, over all the powers of nature; the victory of the gods over the giants!

In Birmingham I visited a steel-pen manufactory, and followed from room to room the whole process of those small metal tongues which go abroad over all the world, and do so much—evil, and so much good; so much that is great, so much that is small; so much that is important, so much that is trivial. I saw four hundred young girls, sitting in large, light rooms, each with her little pen-stamp, employed in a dexterous and easy work, especially fitted for women. All were well dressed, seemed healthy and cheerful, many were pretty: upon the whole, it was a spectacle of prosperity which surpassed even that of the mill-girls in the celebrated factories of Lowell, in America.

Birmingham was at this time in a most flourishing condition, and had more orders for goods than it could supply, nor were there any male paupers to be found in the town; there was full employment for all.

In Birmingham I saw a large school of design. Not less than two hundred young female artists studied here in a magnificent hall or rotunda, abundantly supplied with models of all kinds, and during certain hours in the week, exclusively opened to these female votaries of art. A clever, respectable, old woman, the porter of the school-house, spoke of many of these with especial pleasure, as if she prided herself on them in some degree.

I saw in Birmingham a beautiful park, with hot-houses, in which were tropical plants, open to the public; saw also a large concert-room, where twice in the week “glees” were sung, and to which the public were admitted at a low price: all republican institutions, and which seem to prosper more in a monarchical realm than in republics themselves.

I met with a surprise in Birmingham; that is to say, I was all at once carried back fifteen centuries into the Syrian desert of Chalsis, and there lived a life so unlike Birmingham and Birmingham-life, that just for the sake of contrast, it was very refreshing. The thing was quite simple in itself, inasmuch as one evening I accompanied an amiable family, who resided in Birmingham, to a lecture, which was given by a young, gifted preacher, on the old Church-father, Saint Jerome (Hieronymus.)

The subject of the lecture, which was extempore, and delivered with much ease and perspicuity, was evidently not intended to recommend to his auditors, but rather to repel them from an ascetic and contemplative life. Saint Jerome was delineated as a noble fool, a curiosity in human nature, and was to be deplored as a sacrifice to perverted reason, by no means to be imitated. The true end of humanity was not to be attained by flying from city life, and burying one’s self in a desert for study and self-mortification; that end was rather to be attained in the busy city, than in the isolated existence of the wilderness; and so on. Such was the lecturer’s moral. But upon me his arguments made an impression considerably antithetical to that which he intended. I saw this warrior of the third century devoured by a burning thirst of light and knowledge, of purity for his whole being; saw him wander out, seeking the wells of life; saw him, separating from the agreeable circles of city existence, roam on amid catacombs and the tombs of martyrs; saw him seeing in Gaul, and on the Rhine, and there finding—Christianity. Saw him there, after being baptized, with his Bible under his arm, retire into the deserts of Syria, and there, in the burning sands of Chalsis, bury himself for a number of years, amid exegetic studies and severe deeds of penance. I heard him, even at the time that he, according to his own words, “watered his couch with his tears,” and while he was given over, and regarded as a fool by his friends, still reproach those friends for having chosen the worse part, that of the life of enjoyment in the city, and break forth in transport, “O! silent wildernesses, flower-strewn by Jesus Christ! O! wild solitudes, full of his spirit!”

I saw him, after his conflict was accomplished, go forth out of the desert with his Bible, enter Rome publicly, and unsparingly chastise the crimes of the proud city. I saw the haughty ladies of Rome first start, then bow themselves to the severe judgment of the teacher; saw Marulla and Paula renounce the dissipated life of Rome, and follow the preacher; found convents and Christian institutions in accordance with his views; saw him grow in the combat with the spirit of the age, till he stood as a founder of the greatest power on earth—that of the Christian Church. The fool, who had buried himself in the sands of Syria, and done battle with himself during solitary days and nights.

Ah! this fool, this glowing sun of the desert, as he now stood forth to view, through the veil of fifteen centuries, grew greater and greater in my eyes, till, finally, he expanded himself over the whole of Birmingham, with all its factories, workshops, steel-pens, and the like, as a colossus above an ant-hill.

Birmingham is almost entirely of the class of what are called Chartists; that is, advocates of universal suffrage. They are this, through good and through evil; and the resistance which their just desire to be more fully represented in the legislative body has met with from that body, has brought them more and more into collision with the power of the state, more and more to base their demands in opposition, even to the higher principles of justice; for they overlook the duty of rendering themselves worthy of the franchise by sound education. But the fault here, in the first place, was not theirs. Growing up amid machinery and the hum of labor, without schools, without religious or moral worth; hardened by hard labor, in continual fight with the difficulties of life, they have moulded themselves into a spirit little in harmony with life’s higher educational influences, the blessings of which they had never experienced. Atheism, radicalism, republicanism, socialism of all kinds will and must flourish here in concealment amongst the strong and daily augmenting masses of a population, restrained only by the fear of the still more mighty powers which may be turned against them, and by labor for their daily needs, so long as those powers are sufficing. And perhaps the Americans are right where they say, in reference to this condition of things;—“England lies at our feet—England cannot do without our cotton. If the manufactures of England must come to a stand, then has she a popular convulsion at her door.” Perhaps it may be so; for these hosts of manufacturing workmen, neglected in the beginning by society, neglected by church and state, look upon them merely as exacting and despotic powers; and in strict opposition to them, they have banded together, and established schools for their own children, where only the elements of practical science are admitted, and from which religious and moral instruction are strictly excluded. In truth, a volcanic foundation for society, and which now, for some time past, has powerfully arrested the attention of the most thinking men of England.

But into the midst of this menacing chaos light has already begun to penetrate with an organizing power; and over the dark profound hovers a spirit which can and will divide the darkness from the light, and prepare a new creation.

From Birmingham I traveled, on the morning of the 4th of October, by a railway to Leamington, and thence alone in a little carriage to Stratford-on-Avon.

A minister paid by the community for devoting himself exclusively to its poor, and one worthy of the confidence reposed in him.





In wit a man, simplicity a child.


For over half a century after Goldsmith’s death, the world continued in a state of uncertainty concerning his writings and himself. The greater part of the task-work he had performed for the booksellers was unknown, and Oliver spoken of, in a traditionary sort of way, as the author of the Vicar of Wakefield and the Deserted Village, and a man of laughable eccentricities. The majority of his readers—and no poet had more of them or enjoyed a wider English popularity—never thought he was other than an Englishman; and those who knew the country of his birth differed about the place of it—some asserting he was born at Lissoy, in Westmeath, and others contending for other localities. Even Dr. Johnson, who has set down his native place—Pallas, in Longford—correctly in his epitaph, makes a mistake of three years in his age. All this is remarkable of the cotemporary of Johnson—one who ranked with that literary colossus in his time and was so closely connected with Burke, Reynolds, Percy and the other celebrities of that period. Resembling, in some measure, Butler, in the obscurity of his personal history and the popularity of his works, Goldsmith seemed to be vaguely merging into the Vicar of Wakefield, or the Good Natured Man—just as the poet of the Restoration had come to be confounded with his Roundhead hero—when Prior’s life of him, twenty years ago, first threw a fair light upon the past; indicated the great mass of his writings (poorly compensated, anonymous and plagiarized, in his life-time,) and cleared away a large amount of the misconceptions and fallacies that had been gathered about his fame.

There has hardly been any author in modern times, or perhaps in the ancient, whose personal character contrasts—is made to contrast—so much with the genuine celebrity he has achieved. He would seem to have been laughed at a good deal, and treated with a want of consideration and respect, even by those who loved him and wept at his death; and the impression generally conveyed is, that his manners were uncouth and his conversation ridiculous. Those who have helped to create such a character for Oliver, think they have compounded with their consciences when they have admitted he was a charming writer, and a simple, honest soul, who had no harm in him, and always meant well. Nevertheless, but one half of their portrait can be received. There were no such violent contrarieties in the elements that went to compose Oliver Goldsmith. His biographers—to make the most lenient estimate of them—knew him imperfectly and found it much easier to produce their effects by glaring contrasts than by the patient and loving discrimination due to the truth of every man’s character—especially that of a man like Goldsmith—so marked by peculiarities of education, and so severely tried by circumstances.

The literary character is sure to suffer, more or less, in contact with society. Men of letters who spend half their time with the dead are not exactly the people to be au fait of all the ways of the living; and have not always the good sense of Thomas Baker, who, for that very reason, refused, long ago, to be introduced to the Earl of Oxford and the polished people of his acquaintance. They generally offend against the conventions and are not pardoned in their biographies, which are sometimes writ by men of the world, and which, when even written by authors, who may be supposed capable of sympathizing more with the literary character, still show how the jealousies and prejudices of the craft will stand in the way of honest criticism. A man’s character depends very much on his historians—and Goldsmith, a literary adventurer, a bookseller’s hack, and an Irishman, was particularly—perhaps, necessarily—unfortunate in his.

There have been crowds of distinguished literary men whose peculiarities were almost as much ridiculed as those of Goldsmith, but who have found a more dignified appreciation, by virtue of fairer biographers. Socrates was laughed at more than any man in Athens. But his immortal pupil has rescued his fame from those wits and satirists who used to loiter about the porches, and go, of a morning, to applaud the Clouds of Aristophanes. Socrates was an ugly little man—in the midst of the fine-faced men of Attica—generally threadbare and slovenly; and even Plato has been obliged to allow that his honored master was like an apothecary’s gallipot, painted outside with grotesque figures, but containing balm within. He was as much laughed at as Goldsmith; but nobody can think Socrates a laughable old fellow. There was the Emperor Julian. When he sojourned at Antioch, he was ridiculed and lampooned by the citizens for his careless dress and beard, and his simple manners. Whereupon, instead of treating them as Sulla did those facetious Greeks who said “his face was a mulberry sprinkled with meal,” the philosophic apostate wrote a book against them, called “Misopogon,” in which he pleasantly satirized himself for his literary peculiarities, justified his critics, and happily admitted that he did not, indeed, resemble in any thing those witty and fashionable people who made merry at his expense. If these Antiochans were Julian’s biographers, he should cut but a silly figure in the eyes of posterity. As it is, he has hardly fared much better in another point of view. La Fontaine was voted intolerably stupid in society. The gay Parisians said he merely vegetated—and he was called the Fable Tree—bringing forth fables! Poor Burns complained that though, when he wished, he could make himself “beloved,” he could not make himself “respected.” He confessed that he wanted discretion—was prone to a lapsus linguæ, and very apt to offend the sense of the society he was in—in this, somewhat like Goldsmith. We could cite a score of instances showing that famous men have been barely tolerated in society and very much exposed to the ridicule of it. But their biographers have done their better qualities justice, and they are not remembered in any remarkable degree in connection with the peculiarities which excited the satire of their cotemporaries.

A great many things worked unfavorably for Goldsmith. His face was very plain-favored in expression, he spoke with a brogue and hesitated a little in his utterance. In his nature he was shy, and his manners in society had all the simplicity and unguarded impulse of his earlier years. Such a man, living in comparative retirement, might have passed through the world without any disparagements. But Goldsmith was thrown upon the great stage of London, and into the society of the most fastidious critics and gentlemen of the age. Here his ordeal was a severe one—as the result showed. Boswell, Hawkins, Cumberland, Northcote, Thrale and the rest of those who either wrote memoirs or furnished reminiscences of our author, have proved how little they could sympathize with the plain, blunt Irishman—who was only a simple child of nature and of genius.

Among those who have most contributed to lessen the prestige of Goldsmith’s name was James Boswell, Dr. Johnson’s literary henchman and biographer. In all that Boswell writes of Oliver he exhibits his desire to disparage him. It is true he sometimes expresses partiality for Goldsmith’s conversation. But he, doubtless, intends this as a show of frankness to obtain the more easy credence for his general opinions of the poet. One great cause of this feeling on Boswell’s part was his reverent attachment to the fame of Dr. Johnson, and his jealousy of any one who came or seemed to come into rivalry with that Ursa Major of the British literary firmament. Boswell had the little soul of a parasite, and always felt offense at any exhibition of independence toward Johnson—such having the effect of rebuking his own absurd obsequiousness. Goldsmith, though the easiest and kindliest of men, still kept up that frank, irrespective manliness of disposition which belongs to genius, and could not sympathize with Boswell’s extreme notions of worship. The poet must have felt the folly and impoliteness of trumpeting Johnson in season and out of season—often in presence of better men than the lexicographer—and must have been offended with it, too. On one occasion, indeed, he said to Boswell, with his usual point and good sense—“Sir, you are for making a monarchy of that which should be a republic.” He respected Dr. Johnson, but never bowed down to him, nor to any one else. And the son of a Scottish lord, who venerated on all-fours, could not forgive the poor Irish scholar for standing erect in presence of the grim idol—as Johnson too often was, in his austere moods. Along with all this, Boswell probably knew very well the opinion which Goldsmith had of himself. In conversation with some one who called Boswell a Scotch cur, Goldsmith remarked—“Not so—he is only a Scotch bur: Tom Davies (the publisher) threw him at Johnson and he sticks to him.” A saying which, of course, found its way to the bur’s ears. All these things are sufficient to account for the animus palpably exhibited against Goldsmith in Boswell’s Life of Johnson.

When his book appeared, he was sharply and universally condemned for his treatment of the dead writer. Lord Charlemont expressed his indignant astonishment how James Boswell could affect to undervalue a man of such genius and popularity. Burke said to Lady Crewe, on the subject—“What sympathy could you expect to find, my dear madam, between an Irish poet and a Scotch lawyer?” Wilkes swore two such characters were moral antipodes. Sir Joshua Reynolds, who knew Goldsmith like a brother, and who had heard from report how Boswell meant to depict the poet, remonstrated earnestly with him on the subject before the biography of Johnson came out. Bishop Percy, Mr. Stephens, Mr. Malone and others denied that Goldsmith was guilty of the fooleries and grimaces and unworthy feelings attributed to him by Boswell, and protested against the low estimate he had made of Oliver’s genius and character. And yet with all Boswell’s earnestness in the attempt to lessen Goldsmith, it is remarkable how little he is really able to injure him in the long run. He has created an unfavorable impression of the poet’s manners it is true; but this is wearing away; and the fact is, that, not only the silly Boswell himself, but the austere doctor whom he delighted to honor, and wrote every thing to glorify, seems to be more reflected on than Goldsmith, in most things that have been recorded to the disparagement of the latter in connection with Johnson.

One of Boswell’s first anecdotes of Johnson and Goldsmith will show the paltry, parasitical spirit in which he was in the habit of making his notes and comments. They three had been supping at the Mitre tavern, when Johnson got up to go home and take tea with his blind dependent, Miss Williams. “Dr. Goldsmith,” says Bozzy, “being a privileged man, got up to go with him, strutting away and calling to me, with an air of superiority, like that of an esoteric over an exoteric disciple of a sage of antiquity, ‘I go to Miss Williams.’ ” He says he envied this “mark of distinction,” but soon had the same honor himself! Boswell always betrays himself. For, without a grain of Oliver’s genius, he shows himself to be as thoughtless and absurd as he would have us think the poet to have been. If the latter did really exhibit any thing like exultation on the occasion alluded to—the canny Scot mistook it; he could not enter into the humorous vein of the author of the Citizen of the World, who never let any opportunity of pleasantry of any kind escape him, and who, doubtless, with a playful impulse, would, slily and aside, for Boswell’s behoof, put on a comic air of loftiness, at the idea of his own privilege. Such little traits were very characteristic of Oliver Goldsmith, at all periods of his life; and neither his own dignity nor that of any one else was much thought of, whenever his funny “Cynthias of the minute” came across him. With all his respect for Dr. Johnson, he had still—though Boswell does not seem to admit it—a very strong sense of what was odd, petulant and grandiose in the doctor’s manners, and could sport with it, too, to the bear’s face, with a rare and child-like temerity. For instance, once at Jack’s Coffee-house, where the pair were dining on rumps and kidneys, Johnson said—“These rumps are pretty things; but a man must eat a great number of them.” Goldsmith assented with pleasantry, and then, under the easy, unawed impulse of his nature, and carried away by the thought that he was not at his dreary desk, but at dinner with his friend, pushed on with—“But how many of them would go to the moon?” Johnson had, doubtless, said such small matters did not go far—a common expression, which would have provoked Oliver’s pun—though the story says nothing of this.

“To the moon?” replies Johnson; “I think that exceeds your calculation.”

“Not at all, sir,” cries Goldie—looking ludicrously prepense, at the terrible, grave face opposite—“I think I could tell.”

“Well, sir,” rejoined Ursa Major; whereupon the other comes out with:

“One, if it was long enough!”

Johnson growled angrily, and said he was a fool to provoke such an answer. Not a fool, however, but a solemn bear, whose very grimness, contrasted with the absurdity of the solution, was Goldsmith’s irresistible temptation. We must, in fact, justify Oliver’s fun—though we did not see Johnson’s face. The thing was laughter-compelling. Goldsmith had no undue feeling of deference in his nature at all, though he used certainly to go on all-fours to amuse the children. His irrespective and somewhat careless humor often irritated Johnson, who generally supped full of flattery.

“Doctor,” said Johnson one day, “I have not been quite idle; I lately made a line of poetry.”

Instead of holding up his hands reverently, Goldsmith cried out with his customary levity—“Come, sir, let us hear it; we will try and put a bad one to it.”

“No, sir,” replied the petted monster, drawing in; “I have forgotten it.”

Boswell’s attempts to depreciate Goldsmith are blunderingly made. He always admits enough to betray his own unfair spirit. Johnson having had in 1767, an interview with the king in the library of St. James’s Palace, the thing was greatly talked of. Boswell says, that once at the house of Sir Joshua Reynolds, the doctor was, by request (the henchman’s of course), induced to repeat the circumstances of the meeting, and that during the recital, Goldsmith was observed to be silent and inattentive. He says, the latter was envious of Johnson’s luck, but he goes on to state that at last the frankness and simplicity of his nature prevailed, he advanced to Johnson and told him, he acquitted himself admirably—that he (Goldsmith), “should have bowed and stammered through the whole of it.” No sign of any very deadly envy in all this, surely. Johnson himself, though he mostly made a point of defending Goldsmith against attacks, could not help feeling a little pique and jealousy toward the wit, who never refrained from arguing the matter with him, comically or keenly as he saw fit. Johnson was truculent at times, and would speak rudely to Goldsmith in company. One of the surly moralist’s formulas, whenever Goldsmith would say, “I don’t see that,” was—“Nay, my dear sir, why can you not see what everybody else sees?” On such occasions, Goldsmith’s independence, or want of tact was against him. Johnson at times, used to put him down in this way. During an argument, Goldsmith having been several times contradicted, “sat in restless agitation,” says the veracious Boswell, “from a wish to get in and shine.” No easy matter when Johnson was cloudy. “Finding himself excluded,” he goes on—“he had taken his hat to go away, but remained for some time with it in his hand. Once, when beginning again to speak, he was overpowered by the loud voice of Johnson, who was at the opposite end of the table, and did not notice the attempt. Thus disappointed, Goldsmith threw down his hat in a passion, and said—‘take it’—looking angrily at Johnson. Then Toplady was about to speak, Oliver hearing Johnson growl something, and thinking he was about to go on again, begged he would let Toplady proceed, as the latter had heard Johnson patiently for an hour. ‘Sir,’ roared Johnson, ‘I was not going to interrupt the gentleman. Sir, you are impertinent!’ Goldy said nothing, but continued in the company for some time. When they all met in the evening at the club, Johnson said aside to Boswell, ‘I’ll make Goldsmith forgive me:’ and then aloud—‘Doctor Goldsmith, something passed between us, where you and I dined: I ask your pardon.’ Goldsmith answered placidly, ‘It must be much from you, sir, that I take ill.’ After which,” says Boswell, “Goldsmith was himself again, and rattled away as usual.” All this exhibits the usual animus of Boswell, the coarse tyranny of Johnson, and the fine disposition of Oliver, in a fair light. Goldsmith knew Johnson intimately—intus et in cute—and used to say of him, with that happiness of thought and fancy which his bashfulness could, not entirely mar—“there is no arguing with Johnson; when his pistol misses fire, he knocks you down with the but-end of it.”

Johnson talked for victory—Goldsmith for enjoyment. The former came armed at all points into the argument—the latter was but too glad to fling off all lettered restraint, remove his harness as it were, and enjoy himself in the midst of what he loved so cordially, the sight of happy human faces. Johnson generally entered into conversation like an athlete or a bull into an arena. He once said to Boswell, after some literary reunion—“we had good talk to-night.” “Yes, sir,” returned the admiring disciple, “you tossed and gored several persons.” A pleasant affair, truly, one of those conversations on philosophy and polite literature must have been in the Johnsonian times. Poor Goldsmith was disposed to be light, discursive, and unaffected in genial society—or if affected at all, it was in the desire to contrast his own open pleasantry with the dread gravity of Johnson, and those who stood in awe of him. Oliver was out of his element, in fact, among the generality of those with whom he came into contact at the club and elsewhere. He should have lived in the days of the loud-laughing Jerrold, and Hunt, the old boy at all times, and the pun-elaborating Lamb; he should have known Moore, the gayest of wits, and Maginn, who also stammered forth “his logic and his wisdom and his wit.” The simplicity of his disposition, and the Irish impulses of his nature, led him to desire a hearty enjoyment of his social hours in the midst of his friends. He would have quips and cranks, and a spice of that happy frivolity which comes as easy to the finest geniuses as their more dignified inspirations. But such he was not to have at the Literary Club, where Jupiter-Johnson took the chair—or rather the field, and “glowering frae him,” kept himself perfectly ready to “toss and gore,” as usual.

“While all the clubbists trembled at his nod.”

A great deal of pedantry and paradox was mixed up with the literature of Goldsmith’s time; men’s minds were apt to be as stiff as their costumes, and authors were considered to have a certain professional dignity to support.

Oliver, as we have said, was out of his element in the midst of such circumstances; he did not admire the gravity which is too often a mysterious carriage of the body to cover the defects of the mind, but was disposed in company

“To rattle on exactly as he’d talk

 To any body in a ride or walk.”

In mixed society he seemed very unequal. He very often sat silent, and the shyness of his disposition was thought to be an affectation of dignity. But when the occasion grew more festive, as at after-dinner times, and the poet’s temperament had received the stimulus of aliment and wine, he would overflow with pleasant paradoxes, jests and all sorts of unguarded hilarity, believing that those about him who were aware of the intrinsic wit and worth of his intellect, would justify him against any thought of ridicule or disparagement. In such moods, and before the most fastidious wits of the day, he would come out intrepidly with—“When I used to lodge among the beggars in Axe Lane.” The effect of this on his hearers (we believe it was spoken at one of Sir Joshua Reynold’s dinners) was something like that produced on the discomposed sovereigns sitting round the table at Tilsit, or Erfurth—we forget which—by Napoleon’s reminiscence, beginning—“When I was a lieutenant in the regiment of La Fere!” These sayings seem to show a kindred consciousness of something beyond the conventions of rank and name. Goldsmith was not to be laughed at for that sally—which Socrates or Zeno would have enjoyed very much. But the cankered and fastidious Walpole, who was present on some such occasion, and found the Irishman very blunt in his mode of argument, and very unconcerned at the rank or pretensions of Walpole himself, could not tolerate such franknesses, and with his usual affectation of point, called Oliver “an inspired idiot;” just as Chesterfield had called Johnson “a respectable Hottentot”—but indeed with greater justice; for the moralist’s manners at table, particularly his modes of eating, were rather savage.

Goldsmith was certainly apt to blunder. But it was when in the simple frankness of his nature he thought he was among friends and good fellows in such moods and moments. He put his trust in those whose conventionalities he would offend, and who must have felt the inferiority of their own powers when in contact with his. Disraeli, the elder, has made some just remarks on the wrong to which such men expose themselves very often in society. He says: “One peculiar trait in the conversation of men of genius which has often injured them when listeners are not acquainted with the men—are certain sports of a vacant mind; a sudden impulse to throw out opinions and take views of things in some humor of the moment. Extravagant paradoxes and false opinions are caught up by the humblest prosers: and the Philistines are thus enabled to triumph over the strong and gifted man, because in an hour of confidence and the abandonment of his mind, he laid his head in their lap and taught them how he might be shorn of his strength.” All this is extremely applicable to the case of Oliver Goldsmith.

Almost all the stories told of him to show his absurdity or jealousy are palpably false and must be looked on as failures. Northcote very gravely set down how the doctor was offended, when on his route to Paris, accompanied by Mrs. Horneck and her daughters, to find the young ladies receive more notice and admiration than he himself at a French hotel. This was a stupid misconception, to say the least of it—as Miss Horneck afterward stated, wondering at the same time how such could ever have arisen from the fact. Goldsmith, who was always ready to laugh at himself, for the pleasantry of the thing, in any of his playful moods, seeing his companions pleased by the admiration they excited, and wishing to amuse them, said, with an affectation of wounded self-love, that doubtless produced the effect he intended—“Very well, ladies; you may find somebody else in vogue, very shortly, as well as yourselves.” Such sallies furnish a key to most of those things cited to the ridicule of Goldsmith. Another story is told by Col. O’Moore. Burke and O’Moore going to the club to dine, saw Oliver among others looking at some foreign women in a balcony in Leicester Square. Arrived at the club, Burke affected to be offended with Goldsmith and being questioned, said he could hardly think of being friendly with a man who could say what the doctor had just uttered in the public street. Goldsmith eagerly asking to know what it was, was told he expressed surprise that the crowd should look at these women, while he, a man of genius, was passing by!

“Surely, I did not say so,” says Oliver.

“How should I know it then?” replies Burke.

“True,” admits Goldsmith, “I thought, indeed, something of the kind; but I did not think I uttered it.”

All this is merely clumsy and incredible—just the sort of anecdote for the colonel to tell. Just as preposterous was the story of Goldsmith asking Gibbon, who came into his room while he was writing the History of Greece, “What king was that who gave Alexander so much trouble in India?” and on being informed it was Montezuma, writing it down at once! Then, there is Beauclerc’s funny thing—how Goldsmith, being once conversing with Lord Shelburne (termed “Malagrida” by some political opponent,) told his lordship he wondered they called him Malagrida, for Malagrida was an honest man! Such were the false and stupid reminiscences that went to compose the memory of poor Goldsmith—a man of the finest perceptions and most excellent judgment.

Exaggerated stories are also told of his love of dress and his personal vanity in other matters. His peach-colored coat is thought to be a good jest. It is indeed true, that he was somewhat expensive in dress; but a man who frequented the politest society of the time was obliged to pay attention to his wardrobe. And if his taste in the matter of coats and cocked-hats was not so true as it ever was in literary matters, it may be stated that Aristotle also underwent the rebuke of Plato for his foppishness. A great deal is made of the fact that Goldsmith once attempted to leap from the bank to a little island in a pond, at Versailles, and fell into the water. This is all natural enough, if we refer it to his usual playfulness and the remembrance of the active habits of his youth. It amounts to no more than the gravest man may have to answer for, if all his doings were chronicled. Johnson, when quite an old man, used to make such heavy attempts to be lively. Mrs. Thrale (we believe) says that one day, approaching her house, the philosopher flung himself in sport over a gate that lay in his way, and was very much elated by his own agility.

With all his dignity and philosophy Johnson felt a little jealous of Goldsmith, at times, and used to express disparaging opinions of him. He said—“His genius is great, but his knowledge is small. As they say of a generous man—it is a pity he is not rich; so we may say of Goldsmith—it is a pity he is not knowing.” He also said no one was more foolish than Goldsmith when he had not a pen in his hand, or wiser when he had, thus parodying the saying applied to Charles the Second—

“Who never said a foolish thing,

 And never did a wise one.”

In expressing these opinions, Dr. Johnson seems to forget what he himself has elsewhere said, very justly—to the effect that a great deal of the truth and correctness of a sentiment is sacrificed to the point of it. He also says, amusingly enough—“Goldsmith should not be always attempting to shine in conversation,” (certainly not—this would be a sort of contumacy in Johnson’s presence!) “he has not temper for it.” (Johnson’s own was of such a meek, philosophic stamp!) Even when the dignity of Goldsmith’s doings was more questionable than that of his sayings or writings, the doctor could not help entertaining some little pique. When Oliver had chastised Evans, the publisher, for printing some offensive observations, Johnson remarked to his fidus Achates: “Why, sir, this is the first time he has beaten; he may have been beaten before. This is a new pleasure to him.” He alluded to a white-bait dinner at Blackwall, where Goldsmith, denouncing obscene novels and the indelicacies of Tristram Shandy, created a warm argument among the feasters, whence they fell into personalities; then into an uproar, and thence to fisticuffs, in the midst of which, it is said, Oliver got a smart share of what was going—before they broke up this feast of reason—pretty fairly expressed by the Irish participles, bait, beating, beaten! The affair was very laughable, to be sure. But Johnson should have remembered that he himself had knocked his own publisher down—Osborne. He should have commented more leniently on poor Goldie. The old feuds between authors and publishers were as lively in those times as they were before or have been since. Goldsmith wrote a very dignified public letter, to justify the beating, and showed that there were certain rascalities which called for the imposition of violent hands upon them, and that the punishment of them was sanctioned by the sense of society, though against the letter of the law. But, as we were saying, Johnson permitted himself on many occasions to disparage Goldsmith. Still, in the main, he has stood up strongly for the fame of his friend—thereby showing that such opinions as the foregoing were not very just or generous. When his conscience got the better of his occasional feelings, as was usually the case—for his nature was intrinsically good (he “had nothing of the bear but the skin,” as Goldsmith used to say,) he would do Oliver justice. In this, to be sure, he had a consoling sense of the superiority and patronage which belong to such a championship; and, in maintaining the cause of his friend, he could argue vigorously for himself—for, their fortunes were very much alike. He could express his own feelings of scorn for the conventions or misconceptions of society, in defending the character of a man of genius. Be this as it may, he has left on record sentiments highly honorable to himself as well as to Goldsmith; and has had some of them graven in his epitaph on the poet, dramatist and historian

                                  “Who ran

Through each mode of the pen and was master of all.”

Goldsmith, in society, was not the oddity he is represented to be by Boswell, Walpole and the others. There is no such contradictory monster as they would have us think him. The man who was “inspired” with such true genius—who drew the Vicar of Wakefield—could not have been the “idiot” that the artificial Walpole would depict him. Nor could any man who “wrote like an angel” ever come to “talk like poor Poll,” as Garrick says with such antithetical fallacy. The fact was, Oliver’s broad Westmeath accent, his stammering mode of speaking, and the careless impulses of his thoroughly Irish temperament gave his manners a strange, it may be said an intolerable originality, in an age of forms and observances in literature and life. It was only in a stiff, artificial age, like that in which his lot was cast, that Goldsmith would have been so rudely treated and ridiculed. It is felt that it was not Julian but the polished Antiochans which were ridiculous. We also know that though they laughed at Socrates he was not laughed at, as he himself expresses it. Absurdity was the cant word of Goldsmith’s day for the good-nature, generosity, originality and independence which he brought with him, along with that Shibboleth of his from the simple and honorable home of his childhood, and which he never lost in all the mazes and trials of the great metropolis.

His absurdities, as they termed them, did not, after all, prevent Goldsmith from being well received in the best society of London—a very strong proof, in itself, that the doctor was as much a gentleman in demeanor as he was by his birth and education, and could mingle with the polite and the fashionable on very easy terms and without any violence to his habits. His sayings in company—such as have been remembered—are full of point and pleasantry, and show that he could command, even with his shy utterance, much of the happy spirit of his written style. He was once explaining to a friend, in Johnson’s presence, that in fables where inferior creatures are interlocutors, these should be made to speak in character—that animals on land, for instance, should converse differently from little fishes. This idea, which is, after all, only that which Shakspeare has so beautifully realized, with a difference, in his elves of a Midsummer Night’s Dream, his Caliban and his Ariel, set Johnson a-chuckling at its childishness, which Goldsmith perceiving, he retorted very happily—laughing, too—“You may laugh, doctor, but if you had to make little fishes speak, they would talk like whales!” A palpable hit at the sesquipedalian moralist.

If we come to consider Goldsmith’s influence upon the literary character of his age, we will probably agree that it was second to that of no other author. Indeed, it must be considered superior to that of him who was supposed to sway most authoritatively the world of letters. Doctor Johnson’s style, to be sure, was very impressive, and created a host of imitators—the most remarkable of whom was Gibbon, who surpassed his model in a certain measured splendor of rhetoric—which is, nevertheless, very wearisome at times. But Goldsmith’s many modes of a very simple and lucid style produced then, and since, a more permanent effect. He wrote the best poem, the best comedy, the best novel, and the best history—at least, the best written history of the day. Johnson preferred his historic manner to that of Hume or Robertson. Though Goldsmith’s literature had not the marked effect of Doctor Johnson’s grand Latin idiom; yet being more varied, it reached the wider popularity, such as time has confirmed and increased. Goldsmith kept to the ancient ways of the vernacular, trod by Addison, Swift, Hume, etc.; and contributed not a little to neutralize the Johnsonian mode—which, after all, was recognized to be a corrupt rhetoric, and a weakening of the genius of the Anglo-Saxon tongue. Goldsmith’s, “racy of the soil,” was secured against fluctuations of taste, and the charm of it is as fresh to-day as it was eighty years ago. His comedies abolished the mawkish sentimentality which—derived partly from the Richardson school—dulled the spirit of the stage, and asserted, very happily, the old comic claim of setting audiences in a roar. The change was heartily welcomed; the Londoners crowded to the comedy to be merry, and a respected household tradition, now especially recalled for the sake of the dear old narrator of it, has more than once informed us how George the Third, his fresh-colored English face, full of merriment, and the plain, little cock-nosed Charlotte by his side, in the royal box, both joined in the hilarity of the audience during one of the first performances of “She Stoops to Conquer,” at Covent Garden Theatre; but, at the story of “Old Grouse in the Gun-room,” where everybody laughed on the stage, his majesty fairly chimed in with Mr. Hardcastle, and laughed as loud as any one in the house. Thus, in the words of Mr. Colman—

“Thus, cheered, at length, by Pleasantry’s bright ray,

 Nature and mirth resumed their legal sway,

 And Goldsmith’s genius basked in open day.”

Goldsmith’s prose is the sweetest and most harmonious in the language. His narrative and historical manner is easy and expressive—more so than Hume’s. And here, we may remark how odd it was to see a pair of provincials—an Irishman and a Scotchman, each with the brogue or the burr upon his tongue, and in his manner—vindicating the native purity of the Anglo-Saxon against the subversive genius of two of the foremost English writers—Johnson and Gibbon—and finally overcoming them on their own ground. Goldsmith, in short, as Johnson said very well, ornamented whatever he touched, and some of the dryest disquisitions become in his hands as interesting as a Persian tale. An honor of another kind belongs to Goldsmith.

Among the authors of England none did more than himself to support the dignity and independence of British authorship, the honor of which was so sadly smirched by the dedications of Dryden and Locke, as well as by others before and after them. Oliver instead of thinking of the high nobility, set a fine example to all writers—he dedicated “She Stoops to Conquer,” to Doctor Johnson; “The Deserted Village” to his other friend, Reynolds; and “The Traveler”—his first poem—to his brother, all exhibiting the affectionate manliness of his disposition. And with reference to his brother, we have a trait of Goldsmith’s character which is worth the Vicar of Wakefield. He was once invited to call on the Duke of Northumberland, when that nobleman was going to Ireland, as Lord Lieutenant. Sir John Hawkins, who was leaving the duke’s presence as Oliver was going in, tells the story with indignant reprobation of the poet’s fatal absurdity. His grace having complimented Goldsmith on his writings (he had just written Edwin and Angelina to amuse the duchess), said he was going to Ireland, and would be happy to promote the doctor’s interests in any way, etc. Whereupon the doctor told the duke that the publishers were treating him pretty well just then; but that he had a poor brother in Ireland, a curate on forty pounds a year, with a large family, and begged his grace to remember him, etc. “In this way,” groans Sir John Hawkins, “did Goldsmith dispose of his chance of patronage and fortune.”

As a poet, Goldsmith at once took the rank which posterity has almost unanimously confirmed. The finest critics in the language have honored the claims of the poet of Auburn. Lord Byron says, “where is the poetry of which one half is good? Is it Milton’s? Is it Dryden’s; or any one’s except Pope’s and Goldsmith’s, of which all is good?” There is no need at this time of day, to speak of the nature, pathos and elegance of Goldsmith’s muse. In stateliness he sometimes approaches Dryden; as in those noble verses which Johnson could not read without a tremor and tears of pride:—

“Stern o’er each bosom reason holds her state,

 With daring aims, irregularly great:

 Pride in their port, defiance in their eye,

 I see the lords of human kind pass by.”

But there is one respect in which we think his poetry has not been appreciated as it ought.

The great change which has taken place in poetry from the classic rhythmus and Cæsural canons of Pope’s school, to the nature and fresher phraseology of our modern period has been commonly dated from the rise of Wordsworth and Coleridge—sometimes traced to the effect of Bishop Percy’s ballads. There is generally an incorrectness in any attempt to fix mutations of taste and fashions of style down to chronology. Instead of thinking the old poetic spirit of England was revived at the close of the eighteenth century, we believe it had not died at all; but had lived on, in exile, while a foreign influence bore sway—as the line of Edgar Atheling lived long ago; destined, however, in the fullness of time to be restored to its ancient supremacy. Bishop Percy’s ballads were a manifestation of that spirit, not a cause of it—though he might not have known it—a necessary reaction of the national mind. At the time of their appearance Goldsmith’s poetry was exhibiting the first tokens of the coming change. The theme of it was human nature, with its common feelings, hopes, and sufferings; and pouring the warmth, pathos and earnestness of his own heart into it, he rendered it attractive and popular. His verse had all the vernacular ease and grace of his prose, with a polish only inferior to Pope’s. In his original hands the heroic couplet was not “the clock-work tintinnabulum of rhyme” beaten by the Cawthornes, Darwins, and Hayleys of the day. In his prose criticisms he wrote against the cumbrous use of epithets, and discarded it in his own verse. He amused himself occasionally among his friends, by reciting the lines of several popular authors, with a dissyllable omitted. He would read the opening of Gray’s Elegy in this way:

The curfew tolls the knell of day,

  The lowing herd winds o’er the lea:

The ploughman homeward plods his way

  And leaves the world to gloom and me.

In this respect he must have been rather hard on Johnson, whose poetry in many respects is “the hubbub of words,” which Wordsworth so scornfully terms some of it. The first couplet of the doctor’s great satire has one superfluous line—

Let observation, with extended view,

Survey mankind from China to Peru—

The poem would have started better from “Survey.”

Johnson, indeed, used to ridicule the taste that came up with the Percy Ballads. They had “a false gallop of verses,” in his opinion, and he said he could go on making such stanzas for an hour together, thus:

As with my hat upon my head,

  I walked along the Strand,

There I met another man

  With his hat in his hand.

But in this, as in a great many other matters of literature, morals, and taste, Johnson did not prove himself an infallible doctor. Goldsmith’s taste, of a genuine vates, led him at once to appreciate the simple lyrics of Percy’s collection; and his charming ballad of the Hermit shows how he felt the fresh spirit of them. This excellent poem was written for the Countess of Northumberland. And here we may remark that three of the most attractive modern English poems were composed especially for ladies of high rank—or at their suggestion:—The Lay of the Last Minstrel, at the wish of Lady Anna Scott, daughter of the Duke of Buccleuch; The Sofa, for Lady Hesketh; and Goldsmith’s Ballad for the Countess.

Goldsmith certainly took the initiative in the change which was followed and aided by “the manly and idiomatic simplicity of Cowper”—before Wordsworth and Coleridge were heard of. He effected his share of the reform quietly; he wrote no doctrinal prefaces, but went and did what he meant. In teaching and practicing a new mode, he did not make the noise of a reformer. He was rather more favorable to the style of Dryden and Pope than to some of the ballad enthusiasts that talked and wrote in extremes. He reformed without any affectation of apostleship in the matter of words and syllables—was no literary red-republican. Thirty or forty years later Wordsworth cried, Heureka! as if something were then first done or found. He announced his theories in long didactic prefaces, laid down doctrines which the genius of Goldsmith and Cowper had already suggested or acted on, and fell into extravagancies which they never dreamed of—exhibiting his muse in a very sans culotte condition; the term (having a masculine reference) is somewhat inapplicable—or should be in a well-regulated state of society—though Mrs. Bloomer is of a contrary opinion. But, Wordsworth, in his love of unadorned Nature, used, in fact, to pull off her garments, along with her ornaments, as if he thought, with those other honest fanatics, the early Quakers, that a state of nudity was a state of grace! Coleridge and Southey were his disciples, but not such mighty prosers; and Coleridge was a far superior spirit to the two others, in all subtle thought and lofty expression, though some of Wordsworth’s lines are truly fine. As for Southey, we are disposed to justify Lord Byron in his contempt of the man and his poetry. He was of an overweening and splenetic nature; there was nothing in his character to neutralize the impression made by the “Vision of Judgment” and “Don Juan” respecting him. With regard to Oliver Goldsmith, Southey is convicted of a willful injustice to the memory of a more genuine poet and better man than himself. In his Life of Cowper, speaking of the poets that came after Pope, he never once alludes to the author of The Deserted Village! He says “the school of Pope was gradually losing its influence,” in proof of which, “almost every poem of any considerable length which obtained any celebrity, during the half century between Pope and Cowper, was writ in blank verse. With the single exception of Falconer’s Shipwreck, it would be in vain to look for any rhymed poem of that age, and of equal extent, which is held in equal estimation with the works of Young, Thompson, Glover, Somerville, Dyer, Akenside and Armstrong.” We all know that one cause, at least, of this studied omission of Goldsmith’s name, was Byron’s favorable opinion of his poetry. This deliberate wrong to the memory of a great departed poet, because of a vehement hatred of a living one, shows Southey’s disposition to be as ungenerous, we may say as contemptible, as his hexameters are coldly manufactured, and surely fated to be dry upon the popular palate to the end of time. He affects to rank Oliver among the followers of Pope and the imitators of his style. But there is as little resemblance between Pope’s terse and splendid rhetoric, and the graphic simplicity and nature of Goldsmith’s poetry, as between the blank verse of Wordsworth or Southey and the noble rhythmus of Paradise Lost. Goldsmith scorned as much to fashion his verse after the mode of Pope as he did to detract from the great merit of that author. He cultivated the elegance and rhyming periods of the classic school, and so identified these with his own original spirit, that he recommended anew what, in themselves, are genuine graces of English poetry. They truly belong to the genius of it—as his fine taste must have taught him—and must continue to do so, in spite of all the sprawling Thalaba hexameters of Southey. The heroic rhyming couplet is capable of as much force, flexibility, and beauty, as any other form of English verse, and is never monotonous in original hands—whether of Chaucer, Dryden, Crabbe, or Keats. Southey, in thus pretending to shut his eyes to the claims of the author of The Traveler, must have still felt (for he was not without a critical sense of the genuine in the Anglo-Saxon) that the great mass of his own poetry, so like a hortus siccus, with its elaborated fancies and exotic imagery, must mainly lie upon the shelves of libraries, while Goldsmith’s is fated to be found upon all book-stalls, and to go about to the households and hearts of the people—to be printed in innumerable editions, ornamented with costly engravings, and be found in all parts of the world where the English language is spoken—read by yet unborn generations on the banks of the Burrampooter, the Mississippi, or the Swan River, as freshly and as feelingly as it was, at first, and still continues to be, on those of the Thames and the Tweed and the Shannon. And so it is; and thus, as the clown in Twelfth Night says, “does the whirligig of time bring in his revenges.” Somebody, we forget who, says the praise of the people is a finer thing than the homage of the critics: and, in this way, the ghost of Oliver must be satisfied to see how posterity vindicates him against the early and the latter detractors. He was a true English poet with an Irish heart; and Sir Joshua Reynolds evinced the genuine prescience of genius (though the world said it was only friendship or flattery) when he gave the ugly face of Oliver that classic tournure which should best suit his destined rank in the peerage of Parnassus.

Goldsmith had left his mark upon the literature of his age, and plainly indicated the character of that which was to come, when he quitted his painful desk forever, in 1774, being then about forty-five years old. At that age Cowper was still unmentioned in the world of letters, but was preparing to carry out the salutary innovations which the other had begun. Goldsmith died £2000 in debt. The booksellers had advanced him money for works to be written. Everybody trusted him. “Was ever poet so trusted before?” says Dr. Johnson. Burke wept when he heard Oliver was dead. Such tears were as eloquent as Johnson’s epitaph. The eyes of the latter were moistened, too; and in a sonorous Greek tetrastich, he called on those who cared for Nature, for the charms of song, or the deeds of ancient days, to weep for the historian, the naturalist, and the poet. Poor Goldie died when he had a chance of liberating himself, in another way, from the task-work of publishers. “Every year he lived,” says Dr. Johnson, “he would have deserved Westminster Abbey more and more.” But Goldsmith’s true Westminster Abbey is the volitare per ora and the keeping of his honest memory by the oi polloi, at their firesides, along with the lares—when, as Macaulay would say, a traveler from the empire of Van Diemans Land may probably be sketching the ruins of that British Santa Croce from a broken arch of London Bridge:—

Nothing to them the sculptor’s art,

The funeral columns, wreaths or urns;

as Halleck so well says respecting Robert Burns, in one of the finest of his lyrics.





Leonardo de Vinci is said to have been four years employed upon the portrait of Mona Lisa, a fair Florentine, without being able, after all, to come up to the idea of her beauty.


Artist! lay the brush aside,

  Twilight gathers chill and gray;

Turn the picture to the wall—

  Thou hast wrought in vain to-day.


Thrice twelve months have hastened by

  Since thy canvas first grew bright

With that brow’s bewitching beauty,

  And that dark eye’s melting light.


Yet the early sunbeam shineth

  On thy tireless labors yet,

And the portrait stands before thee,

  Till the evening sun has set.


Faultless is the robe that falleth

  Round that form of matchless grace;

Faultless is the softened outline

  Of the fair and oval face.


Thou hast caught the wondrous beauty

  Of the round cheek’s roseate hue;

And the full red lips are smiling,

  As this morn they smiled on you.


To that lady thou hast given

  Immortality below,

Wherefore, then, with moody glances

  Dost thou from thy labor go?


From the living face of beauty

  Beams the soul’s expressive ray,

And, with all thy god-like genius,

  This thou never canst portray!


Of the countless throng around me,

  Each hath labors like to thine;

Each, methinks, some Mona Lisa

  In his spirit’s inmost shrine.


Visions haunt us from our childhood

  Of a love so pure, so true,

Seraphs unawares might envy

  As their white wings fan the Blue;


Visions that elude forever,

  As the silent years depart,

Some unhappy ones and weary—

  Mona Lisas of the heart!


Dreams of a divine completeness

  That we struggle to attain,

’Mid the doubts and toils harassing

  Of our earthly life in vain;


Poet fancies we endeavor

  To imprint upon the scroll,

Yet for worded utterance failing—

  Mona Lisas of the soul!





          Sweet little faery bird,

          Gentle Canary bird,

Beats not thy tiny breast with one regret?

          Is it enough for thee

          Ever, as now, to be

Caged as a prisoner, kissed as a pet?


          Gay is thy golden wing,

          Careless thy caroling,

Thou art as happy as happy can be;

          Singing so merrily,

          Hast thou no memory

Of thy lost native isle o’er the sea?


          Not the Hesperides,

          Floating on fabled seas,

Nothing in Nature, and nothing in song,

          Match with the magic smile,

          Which, from thine own sweet isle,

Hushes the heaving wave all the year long.


          Summer and youthful Spring,

          Blooming and blossoming,

Hand-in-hand, sister-like, stray thro’ the clime;

          There thou wert born, amid

          Fruits colored like thee, hid

In the green groves of the orange and lime.


          Then was the silver lute

          Of the young maiden mute,

When, from the shade of her own cottage-eaves,

          Rang first thy joyous trill,

          While, with a gentle thrill,

Tho’ the breeze stirred them not, shivered the leaves.


          Thou, like a spirit, come

          From thy far island-home,

Seemest of spring-time and sunshine the voice.

          Light-hearted is thy lay,

          As, on the lemon spray,

Love, little singing bird, made thee rejoice.


          For, from thy lady’s lip,

          Oft is it thine to sip

Sweetness which dwells not in fruit or in flower;

          And when her shaded eye

          Rests on thee pensively,

Moonlight was ne’er so soft silv’ring thy bower.


          Likest to thee is Love,

          Never it cares to rove,

When its wild winglets feel Beauty’s control.

          Would, little bird, that I

          Might to thine island fly,

All, all alone with the girl of my soul!


          There should’st thou sing to us,

          Tender and tremulous,

Our hearts happy with love unexpressed.

          Sweet little faery bird,

          Gentle Canary bird,

How would’st thou be by that dear girl caressed.





[Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1852, by George Payne Rainsford James, in the Clerk’s Office of the District Court of the United States for the District of Massachusetts.]

(Continued from page 279.)


A period of wandering and of danger, of flitting from place to place, and land to land, of difficulties and distresses, of almost daily peril, of constant uncertainty as to the future, would seem to furnish matter enough for memory; but yet the period immediately succeeding my separation from Father Bonneville, is very dim and obscure to remembrance. I staid so short a time in any place, one event trod so fast upon the heels of another, that neither scene nor event had time to fix itself firmly in memory, before, like the grass upon a public pathway, it was trodden down by passing feet.

At this time, I could speak three languages with almost equal facility: English, French, and German; but English perhaps, I understood most thoroughly—at all events, I know, I generally thought in that language. This facility was of very great advantage to me, and I notice it on that account, as I could pass wherever those tongues were spoken for a native of the country. It is true, I had not soon occasion to see France again; but I wandered through many parts of Switzerland, where French was in common use.

The terrible dissensions and frightful bloodshed that were going on in that once fair and peaceful land, soon drove me forth, however, though I anxiously continued my inquiries for Father Bonneville, as long as there seemed a chance of success. My steps were then turned toward the North of Germany, without object; and more directed by accidental circumstances, than by any predetermination of my own, I walked on foot the whole way; for the hundred louis afforded but small means, and I had learned the necessity, and the mode of economy. Fifty of those hundred louis I put by with the resolution never to touch them except in the last extremity; and no one can tell the amount of distress and privation I submitted to, rather than violate that resolution. Every thing I could part with, I disposed of before I set out: my beloved rifle amongst the rest. I had a good many little trinkets, which I had purchased in the foolish vanity of youth, but I got rid of them all, and only retained my watch, with a seal bearing a coat of arms attached to it, (which seal I had possessed as long as I could remember any thing) and the ring and little gold chain which had been given to me by Madame de Salins. My clothes were all compressed into a knapsack, and in my hunter’s garb, with thick, coarse shoes upon my feet, I plodded on my weary way, over mountain and moor, through field and forest, in the town and in the country, seeking wherever opportunity seemed to present itself, for some employment, but finding none. All I could offer to do was to teach, and the whole of Europe was so overloaded with persons in the same situation, who had been driven forth from France by the Revolution, that it was hardly possible to find any profitable occupation of that kind.

Often, often at peasant’s hut, or farmer’s house, I have begged a morsel of black bread, and a draught of water. Perhaps this was not very right, when I had actually money in my pocket, but yet it is a common custom in that country, and almost every artisan, before he becomes a master in his trade, spends some years in what is called fechting or in other words, begging his way from place to place. The assistance was almost always readily given, and sometimes the charity of woman would add a drink of milk, or a few kreutzers.

I was within sight of the town of Hamburgh before any chance of occupation presented itself, and then it came about in rather a singular manner. I was walking on at a quick pace, at about three miles from the city, on the same side of the Elbe, when I saw from a little garden gate, close by a small summer-house, an elderly gentleman come forth, of somewhat peculiar appearance. He was exceedingly thin, brisk and active-looking, with powdered hair and a thick queue, an enormous white cravat, a vast frill, and a bluish-gray cloak, somewhat threadbare. There was a keen, sharp look about his eyes and mouth, which was not very promising, and I walked on without taking much notion of him. His pace, however, was as fast as my own, and we kept nearly side by side for about half-a-mile, without speaking, till we came upon a long wooden bridge, which every one who has been in Hamburgh must recollect. He had eyed me, I perceived, with great attention, and at length he burst forth.

“Well, young man,” he said, “I think you might have given me good time of day, at least.”

“I do not know you,” I answered, “and do not like to take liberties with strangers.”

“Mighty modest,” rejoined he. “What’s your trade?”

I explained to him, that I was seeking employment as a teacher, having been driven out of my own country by Revolution. That seemed to touch him; for he had a great abhorrence of Revolutions, and he asked me what I could teach.

I told him that I was competent to give instruction in Latin, Greek, Mathematics, French, English and German.

“Hundert tausand!” he exclaimed, “the lad is an Encyclopædia. Let us see what you can do;” and immediately he poured forth a passage of Euripides, with which I was quite familiar. I rendered it at once into German, and he then made me give it him in French, which I did as well as I could, in that meagre tongue. He rubbed his hands all the time, saying—“Ha—ha.” He spoke to me in English, too, such as it was, and though his pronunciation would have made a dry salmon laugh, yet I found that he had a very thorough acquaintance with all the works of the best authors of England. The conversation soon became interesting to us both, and we went on chatting and discussing till we reached the gates of the town. There he suddenly paused, and looking at me from head to foot, exclaimed—

“So you want employment—you are poor, I dare say—very poor?”

I replied, that it was hardly possible to be poorer.

“Well, then, you must not lodge in dear inns,” he said.

I told him I did not know where to lodge, as I was a stranger in the town.

“I’ll tell you,” he answered, “I’ll tell you. You must lodge in the lower town—in the Hardt-Gasse—number five—with Widow Steinberger.” He repeated the direction over three times, and then added—“She should board you for two dollars a week—don’t give her more. Everybody asks too much, in expectation of being beaten down—a bad system, but universal.”

All this time he had been continually turning himself round upon his right leg, between each two or three words, as if intending to go away, and I perceived no inclination upon his part to help me to employment; but when he came to the end of his directions, he drew out a little note-book, wrote something in it with his usual rapidity, tore out the leaf, and gave it to me saying—

“Come to see me—come to see me. I’ll think of what can be done. We’ll find you employment, Polyglot,” and away he turned and left me. I then, with better hope than I had hitherto had, inquired my way to the street which he had indicated, without having curiosity enough to look at any thing but his name, which I found to be “Herman Haas.” I was a long time in finding the Hardt-Gasse, and before I did so, I plunged into many a dark and gloomy street of tall, old houses, and warehouses. At length, the end of a little lane was pointed out to me, the appearance of which was more in harmony with the state of my finances, than my desires. But I found, on walking up it, that the houses must, at one time, have been of some importance, judging by the size of the doors, and the ornaments which clustered round them. At number five, I stopped; and finding neither knocker or bell, opened the door and went in.

“Who’s there?” screamed a voice from the right, and entering a large, dim, old-fashioned room, I found myself in the presence of a stately dame, engaged in the dignified occupation of cooking, who instantly demanded what I wanted. I found that this was no other than Madame Steinberger, herself, but before she would enter into any negociations in regard to boarding and lodging me, she insisted upon knowing who had sent me there. When I showed her the paper, however, she exclaimed—“Professor Haas! Oh! that is another matter;” and our arrangements were soon effected. As the professor had anticipated, she asked more at first than she was inclined to take, but his dictum was all powerful with her, and I was soon installed in a comfortable little room, with the advantage of a large sitting-room besides, when I chose to use it, for which accommodation, with three meals in the day, I was to pay two dollars a week.

On the following morning, at the hour which my landlady told me would be most convenient, I went to call upon the professor, whom I found in his study; though how he contrived to study at all, I cannot make out; for he was in a state of continual movement—the most excitable German I ever saw. During the greater part of the time he was talking to me, he was taking down one book and putting up another, turning over papers upon the table, dipping a pen in the ink and wiping it again, with other operations to carry off his superfluous activity. He must have been quiet at some time; for he certainly was a very learned man; but I never could discover when it was. At length, after having asked a great number of questions, he said—“I have got one pupil for you, to make a beginning—Come, I’ll show her to you;” and leading me into another room, on the same floor, he presented me to a young lady, who sat there embroidering, as his daughter. “There,” he said, “teach her English, and any thing else you can. I have no time—she is a good girl, but slow.”

The young lady looked up in his face with a calm, placid smile, saying, “If there were two such quick people as you in the house, my father, they would always be running against each other.”

“True,” replied the old man, “true, and philosophical. Nature loves contrasts as well as harmonies. Opposing forces counteract each other. You, my Louise, are my vis inertiæ. Without you I should get on too fast. But come, young gentleman—what is your name?”

“Louis de Lacy,” I replied.

“I like that, I like that,” answered the old man “The De, speaks blood and good political principles—but come—we will settle the terms in my own room, and will try to get you something more to do by and bye.”

I found the good professor had as accurate a knowledge of making a bargain, as he had of Greek or Latin. He calculated the worth of my services to a pfennig, and, as I found afterward, if I had made the slightest opposition, would have beaten me down still lower; for he had a pleasure in such sort of triumphs. I let him arrange it all his own way, however, and left to his own generosity, he probably added a little to the sum which he had intended to give. It was agreed that I was to teach his daughter two hours during the day, and as soon as all this was settled, he pushed me by the shoulders toward the door, saying, “There, go, begin at once. You have three hours before dinner. I must go to my recitations.”

I found the way back to the room where Louise Haas was seated, and where I passed two hours of every day, for nearly nine months, and generally the greater part of every Sunday. She was a pretty creature, with small, well-shaped features, a very graceful form, though plump and rounded, and a bright, clear complexion, which varied a good deal under different emotions. Her mother had died, I found, some four or five years before, of that pest of northern countries, consumption. There was nobody in the house but herself, her father, and two women servants: hardly any society was admitted within the doors, but grave old professors, with long hair, not very well combed; and thus tutor and pupil, like Abelard and Heloise, were left alone together for many an hour—I having her father’s commands to teach her English, and any thing else I could. Father Bonneville’s good lessons, however, some knowledge of the world, and many hard experiences, together with other feelings, which I cannot well describe, prevented me from even thinking of taking any unfair advantage of my situation. It was natural, however, that in such circumstances, young acquaintance should speedily ripen into intimacy, and intimacy into friendship. Nay, it was not unnatural that little marks of kindness and tenderness should pass between us; for though very calm and gentle, she was of a loving and caressing disposition. I found her far from dull—a very apt scholar; but sometimes there were things she could not comprehend, and then she would look smiling in my face, and ask if she was not very stupid, and let her hand drop into mine and rest there, as a messenger sent to beseech forbearance.

We were both very young; she not more than eighteen, and I about twenty, and strange new feelings began to come over my heart toward her. I will not even now say that it was love; and then, I would not inquire what it was, at all. It was a tenderness—a feeling of gentle, quiet affection—a fondness for her society—a pleasure in seeing those soft eyes, look into mine, and a gratitude for the kindness she ever showed, and took every opportunity of showing. What she felt, I learned afterward; but let me turn once more to the course of my life in Hamburgh.

By the kind offices of the good old professor, I obtained several other pupils, and I had the great happiness of finding my income exceed my expenditure. I threw off my traveling garb; I brought out from my knapsack the clothing which I had so carefully saved: I gained admittance into some of the society of the town, and though I do not think I was ever very vain, whatever vanity I had, received some encouragement. But my favorite resort was still the professor’s house. He and his daughter were my first friends in the city, and I became more and more intimate with him every day. He was pleased with the progress his daughter made, and he was also pleased with the little assistance which I gave him, from time to time, in different works he was compiling. While I wrote for him, or looked out passages for him, he could fidget about the room at his case, and get into every corner of it in five minutes. At the end of a month, I had a general invitation to spend my evenings there whenever I pleased—and I did please very often. Then, after a while, I was sent with Louise to church; for she went regularly, although I can’t say that the professor ever wore out the steps of any religious edifice, and I took care not to allow my Roman Catholic education to prevent my joining a Protestant congregation, with my pretty little pupil. Indeed I was hanging at this time very slightly by the skirts of the garments of Rome. I had been reading the Bible a great deal lately. I read some Romanist books also, but I found that the two did not agree, and I liked the Bible best. Besides all this, as spring succeeded to winter, and days lengthened, and suns grew warm, there was every now and then a moment of very sweet, spring-like happiness, when after attending the church, Louise and I took a farther walk, till the hour of the good professor’s dinner. Sometimes we had another walk, too, in the evening, and sometimes he accompanied us to his little garden with the summer-house, near the gate of which I had first met him. It was all very delightful; and my ambition, which had once been strong and wide, had by this time shrunk to very small proportions. I could have been contented to linger on there, with every thing just as it was, for an indefinite period of time. But it must be remembered, that not one word, regarding love, ever passed between Louise and myself, except when it occurred in passages of books. I am afraid, however, that those passages, about this time, occurred very often. Louise was fond of them, and I turned them up easily for her.

Thus it went on—for I must not dwell upon details—for about eight months, when it so miserably happened that an aunt of the professor’s, somewhat younger than himself in years, but screwed up by ancient maidenhood to the sharpest and very highest tone of the human instrument, arrived. She was all eyes, ears and understanding. God knows, she might have heard every word that passed between Louise and myself, and seen all that we did too—if looks were excepted. But it so happened that at this time the influence which France exerted over Prussia was so great, that the Protectorate of the latter power over the northern circles became a mere tyranny exercised for the purposes of the French Republic, principally for the persecution of emigrants. The position of such persons as myself became very dangerous; and the necessity of my removal from Hamburgh was more than once talked of at the professor’s table, where I now dined frequently. It was even suggested that I should engage a passage in a vessel which was about to sail in a couple of months for the United States of America.

I could not help remarking that Louise turned very pale when these things formed the subject of conversation, and during six weeks of fluctuating anxiety, I saw with sincere apprehension that she lost health and spirits. I dared not, I could not venture to take the idea to my heart that that dear, amiable little creature suffered on my account; but still I did my best to cheer and comfort her, and perhaps became a little more tender in manner and fond in words, than I had ever dared to be before. It was now always, “dear Louis” and “dear Louise;” but I do not think we went any further than that. Often, often would she ask me questions regarding my past history, and as much was told her as I knew myself. She seemed to take a deep interest in it; but as it was a subject of deep interest to me, that I looked upon as natural. However, things had gone on in this way for some time, my pretty Louise still failing in health, not losing, but rather increasing her beauty by the daily walks which she now forced herself to take.

One day, at length, the explosion came. I met the old professor at the top of the stairs, and instead of turning me over at once to Louise, he beckoned me into his own study, and then in a very excited state flew from corner to corner of the room, glancing at me angrily, but saying nothing. This conduct, became so painful, that I at length broke silence, saying, “You wish to speak with me, Herr Haas.”

“Ay, sir, ay!” he replied with vivacious sharpness, “Have I not cause to speak?—have I not cause to feel anger? Here, I took you in as a beggar, and trusted you as a friend, and you have betrayed my trust by winning my daughter’s affections under the pretence of giving her instructions. Answer it how you may, sir, it is a bad case.”

“As to winning your daughter’s affections, my dear sir,” I replied, “I think you must be mistaken; for I can boldly appeal to her to say, whether I have once spoken on the subject of love toward her, or on any other to justify the imputation you cast upon me. I have always respected your hospitality, and owing you so much as I do, I should have conceived myself base indeed to seek her affection without your consent. We have been thrown much together and—”

But nothing would satisfy the old man. He interrupted me hastily, catching at my words, and saying, “that the only way of proving my sincerity was to quit Hamburgh at once; that his aunt, who inhabited a country-mansion, not many miles distant, had pointed out to him—in the course of a morning lecture which she gave him, before her departure that day—all that was going on between Louise and myself; that a ship would soon sail for America, and that if I really entertained the honorable sentiments I expressed, I would take my passage in her, and leave his household to recover its peace.” He asked me, in a taunting tone, if I knew that his daughter was his heiress, and ended by forbidding me the house.

I retired gloomy and desponding, and although he had said nothing to lead me to such a conclusion, I felt almost certain that he had spoken to Louise, before his conversation with myself. There was a sort of gloomy consolation in this conviction, and I hesitated as to whether I should quit Hamburgh, or remain in the hope of some change of feeling upon his part. There is such a thing as half-love, and I knew—I felt—that I could make the dear girl happy, and could be very happy with her myself. The remembrance, however, that I had nothing on earth—that I was an outcast—a beggar, in reality, and that she was probably rich, decided me. I went down to the wharf. I took my passage. I paid a part of my passage-money, but I learned—with a strange mixture of feelings—that the sailing of the packet was put off for a whole month, which made nearly seven weeks from that day. The master took pains to inform me, that this delay was occasioned by apprehension on the part of his owners, of the English cruisers, which, at that time, were behaving as ill to neutral vessels, as they were behaving well in combats with the enemy. I cared little for the reasons, however, but went away, not knowing whether to be pleased or sorry for this respite.

I could not quit Hamburgh without feelings of regret—I could not leave Louise without a bitter pang—I had done what was right—my conscience approved; and if accident kept me in the town, and fortune favored me with any change of circumstances, Hope might plume her wings without any self-reproach.

I little knew with how much anguish that period of delay was to be filled.

Good Madame Steinberger had evidently heard something of what had occurred at the professor’s house. She had been very kind to me, and was kind still; but her reverence for Professor Haas somewhat jostled with her regard for her young lodger. I would sit for hours in the evening, dreaming of the past, thinking of Louise, dwelling upon happy hours that were never to return. And then Madame Steinberger would come and attempt to comfort me, saying, that it was mere boy and girl’s love, and would soon pass away: that I and the young lady would both soon forget, and that she doubted not to see us both happy parents.

If she had taken up a red-hot skewer, and thrust it into my heart, she would not have produced more wretchedness than she did by her mode of consolation.

No consolation—no thought—no philosophy was of any avail. It was a period of intense bitterness, filled with many varied emotions, but all of them most painful. Had my love been more ardent, more vehement than it was, my condition would probably have been less sad. I should have striven—I should have resisted—but a dark and gloomy feeling took possession of my mind, that all who loved me, all who felt an interest in me were destined to be lost to me, almost as soon as I felt the blessing of their sympathy and kindness. I was more miserable than I can describe: there was nothing to stimulate: to spur on endeavor: to rouse up dormant energy. It was all dull, blank, monotonous, melancholy inactivity.

Three weeks had passed in this manner, when one evening, as I was sitting in the larger room, where good Frau Steinberger had kindled a fire, with my feet upon the andirons, my head leaning on my hand, and a book which I had vainly endeavored to read, fallen on the floor by my side, there was a step in the passage and the door opened. I took no notice: I cared for nothing: I was without hope or expectation: I was once more cast upon the world—the fragment of a wreck upon the wide ocean.

Suddenly a voice sounded near me, which I knew right well. “Louis,” it said. “Louis, can you forgive me? Louis, will you save me—will you save my child?”

I started up, and gazed upon the figure before me. I could hardly believe it was my old friend the professor, so pale, so worn, so sorrow-stricken was his look.

I instantly clasped his extended hand in mine. “My dear, good friend,” I said, “what have I to forgive? I never sought to bring sorrow or discomfort to your door—I would rather have died. That is all I have to say. Tell me what I have to do—tell me what you would wish, and I am ready to do it.”

“Come to Louise,” he said, wringing my hand hard. “Come to Louise—I have been a fool—a madman—a mercenary wretch. You only can save her—Come to her—come to her at once!”

I trembled violently, but I snatched up my hat, exclaiming, “let us go,” and rushed out of the house before him.

We flew along the streets, running against every body—seeing nobody—heeding nobody. I asked no questions. I knew there was something terrible; but I was going to Louise, and felt that I should soon know all. All houses stood upon the latch in Hamburgh in those days. I opened the door—I went in—I rushed up the stairs—I heard him cry “stop, stop”—but the trumpet of an angel would not have called me back. I entered her sitting-room. She was not there. I heeded not. I knew her bed-room lay beyond. I passed on and opened the door.

She was seated in a chair, with all the bright color gone from her cheek, except at one point. A physician stood beside her, with a glass in his hand. One old maid-servant was kneeling at her feet, wrapping them in flannel. A handkerchief, dyed with blood, was at her lips. Could I pause? No, had it killed both her and myself. In an instant I was across the room, at her feet, and my arms around her.

“Louise, my own Louise,” I cried.

She looked at me with surprise—then gazed beyond me to her father, who followed close—then cast her arms round my neck, and leaned her head upon my shoulder, saying in a faint voice, “Louis, dear Louis, you have saved me—I feel—I am sure, I shall live to be your wife.”

“Hush, hush,” said the physician. “You must not speak at all.”

“You shall be his wife; you shall be his wife!” cried her father eagerly.

“I am very happy,” said Louise.

“I must have perfect silence,” said the physician, “all will go well now; but every one must quit the room.”

“No one shall tend her but myself,” I said; “but I will be as still as night. She is mine—mine by the deepest and the holiest ties, and I will not leave her till this is staid.”

Nor did I; but through the live-long night, with the physician and the fond old servant, I remained silently watching, aiding, comforting, supporting her. From time to time the spitting of blood returned; but, at length, ice was thought of and procured. That checked it effectually. Two hours passed without the slightest return of that direful symptom, and lifting her in my arms, as a father might a child, I placed her in her bed. Then seating myself on a little footstool at the side, I laid my head upon the same pillow. I thought she would sleep more happily so. Her heavy eyes closed quietly; her breathing became calm and gentle; she slept; and ere many minutes had passed, I slept beside her.



The hemorrhage returned no more. Louise and I awoke at nearly the same moment, just as the morning light was streaming in through the windows, and she smiled sweetly to see me there, with my head upon her pillow, and the good old servant sitting fast asleep at the foot of her bed.

Poor girl, she fancied that all danger was passed; that she would soon be well, and that we should be very, very happy. But, alas! grief and disappointment too frequently shoot with poisoned arrows, and the venom remains in the wound, after the shaft has been extracted. She was not suffered to rise that day, and was forbidden to speak more than a monosyllable at a time. The good physician quoted the Bible to her, saying—“Let your communication be yea, yea, nay, nay, for of more cometh evil.” On the following day, however, she rose, and gradually was permitted to talk more and more, without any evil effect being produced. Then for a short time we were very happy. The good, old professor did all that he could to make up for his previous harshness, consented to any thing that we wished. Spontaneously promised two thousand dollars to set Louise and myself off in life, although we were to make our abode with him, and talked of obtaining a professorship for me in the university. Luckily his avocations kept him from home a good deal each day, otherwise his daughter’s health would have suffered more, from his continually running in and out of the room. She made some progress during the first week after I returned, regained strength in a certain degree, and I was full of hope for her, although she had an unpleasant cough, very frequent, though not violent. We talked of the coming days, and of our marriage, as soon as she was quite well, and I measured her finger for the ring, and kissed the little hand on which it was to be placed. Oh, they were very, very pleasant dreams, those; and I felt that I could be exceedingly happy with that dear, gentle girl—nay, I fancied that our happiness was quite assured; for when I looked into her eyes, they were so full of light and life, that one could hardly fancy they would ever be extinguished in death and darkness. Her bright color did not come back into the cheek indeed, except at night, and then it was not so generally diffused. Nevertheless, she felt herself so well—we all thought she was so well—that our wedding-day was fixed for about three weeks afterward. As the time approached, however, she was not quite so well again. The weather changed, and two or three days of cold, damp wind succeeded, which seemed to affect her very much. It was judged expedient that our marriage should be delayed for a fortnight; for she felt the least breath of air. Nevertheless, we kept up our spirits well for a little while, and she talked confidently of regaining health, and being just as well as ever. But as the days went on, I perceived with anxiety and alarm, that she grew weaker. I used to take her out whenever the air was soft, and the sun shone warmly, for a little walk, in the hope that it would restore her strength, and I soon found that she could not go so far, without fatigue, as at first; that to climb even the little slopes which exist in Hamburgh, rendered her breathing short, and increased her cough. Our walks became less and less, till, at length, she went out no more. A change, hardly perceptible in its progress, was gradually wrought in her. I saw little difference between one day and that which preceded; but when I looked back to a week or a fortnight before, and compared the present with the past, I could not close my eyes to the conviction that she was worse—much worse.

After a while, she took her breakfast in bed; but made an effort to rise as early as she could, in order to come and join me in the sitting-room. She ever spoke cheerfully, too, and seemed to have no thought of danger. But her father was in a terrible state; for he couldn’t close his eyes to her situation, and I do believe, that if the sacrifice of his life by the most painful kind of death would have purchased his child’s recovery, he would have made it without a hesitation. I deceived myself more than he did. I had heard of the effect of change of air, and I had talked to Louise so often about her recovering strength, and going with me for a short time, to some milder climate, that I had almost persuaded myself, against conviction, that it would be so. I fancied, too, that I could make her so happy, she must needs recover; for I knew what a blessed balm happiness is, and thought it must be all-effectual.

As she could no longer go to church, the good minister of the parish came several times to see her, and as he had a friendship for me, he would often talk with me afterward—not that I liked his conversation now as much as formerly; for it was very gloomy, and he strove evidently to fill my mind with the dark anticipations which occupied his own. The rays of religious hope, he endeavored to pour in too; but it was earthly hopes I then clung to, and I did not like to have them taken away.

One morning, after he had been with Louise, I found some tears upon her cheek, when I went in to see her; for by this time she did not rise till very late in the day, and all painful restraint being removed, I used to go and sit by her bedside, and read to her for some hours each morning. I was half angry with the old man for depressing her spirits; but she soon recovered her cheerfulness, and it was not till two days afterward, that I learned he had told her she must die.

I was sitting beside her, with my arm fondly cast round her, as she sat propped up by pillows, and I was indulging in those dreamy hopes of the future, which I still entertained, and thought she entertained likewise. I talked of our proposed journey to the South, and of escaping the cold, winter weather of Hamburgh, and of myself and her father—for he was to go with us in this dream—nursing her like a tender plant, till the bright summer came back again to restore her to perfect health.

She turned her sweet eyes upon me, with a gentle but melancholy smile.

“Do you know, dear Louis,” she said, “I begin to think that time will never be?”

I looked aghast, and laying her hand tenderly in mine, she added—

“Nay, more, love, I fear I shall never be your wife, unless—unless you can make up your mind to take me as I am now, and part with me very soon.”

“O, Louise, Louise!” I cried, pressing her to my heart, with the dreadful conviction first fully forced upon me, by words such as she had never used before. “Do not, do not entertain such sad fears. Be mine at once, dear girl, and let me take you away from this bleak place—by slow, easy journeys—by sea—any how.”

A single large tear rose in her eyes, and leaning her head upon my shoulder, she said in a low, hesitating voice—

“I will own, it would be very sweet to be your wife, were it but for a day—yet what right have I,” she added, “to ask you to make me so, in such a state as this—to leave you so soon, so young a widower?”

“Let not such thoughts stop you for a moment, Louise,” I answered. “It will be a blessing and a comfort to me. I can then be with you always—never leave you—nurse you by night and day, and if the fondest cure can save you, still keep my little jewel for my life’s happiness.”

She pressed her lips fondly upon my cheek, and asked—“Do you really feel so, Louis?”

“From my heart,” I answered. “There is no blessing—no comfort I desire so much. Let it be this very day—may I speak to your father?”

“If you will,” she answered with a bright smile, and I know not that I ever in life felt such satisfaction as in seeing the happiness and relief I had bestowed upon that dear girl.

The old professor was ready to grant every thing we could desire. He was now the complete slave of her will; but the marriage could not take place that day, for some few formalities had to be gone through and arrangements to be made. It was appointed for the next evening, however, and when Louise awoke upon her wedding-day, she sent the maid to tell me that she felt much better.

She knew what happiness that news would give me, and I was soon by her side to confirm the assurance with my own eyes.

She was better. She looked better. She had rested well, and she was able to rise an hour earlier than she had done before. The incorrigible liar, Hope, whispered her false promises in the ears of both, I believe, and the hours passed more brightly during that afternoon, than they had done for many a day before.

At eight o’clock the Protestant minister came, and with him a notary. The physician was the only other person present, except Louise, her father, and myself. The irrevocable words were soon spoken, the contract signed, and the ring upon her finger; but as I put it on, a cold, sad feeling came upon my heart. It had been somewhat tight when I first bought it, and now it was very loose. We were even obliged to wind some silk round it the next day, to prevent it from falling off.

For three days, happiness seemed to have all the effect that I had ever attributed to it in my brightest fancies. Louise was certainly better, and she looked so happy, so cheerful, walked up and down the passage hanging on my arm, with a step so much lightened, that even the old professor caught the infection of our hopes, and began to talk of future days.

The medicine soon lost its power over the invincible enemy. We had been married just six days, and during the three last, Louise had been feebler again, and very restless at night. The sixth day was a warm, sunny one. The light shone cheerfully into our room, and she talked to me of the sweet aspect of the summer, and made me open the window to let in the gentle air.

One room of the old professor’s house looked out upon the ramparts, planted with trees. It was a large room, seldom used; but Louise asked me to go in there, and open the windows before she rose, saying, that she should like to sit and look at the green leaves.

Her father came in before she was dressed, and when she was ready, we took her out of her room, with a hand resting on the arm of each, and led her into that saloon. I had placed an arm-chair for her near the window, and she approached feebly and seated herself in it. The air was very balmy: a clear, sparkling sunshine brightened the foliage: the sky beyond, was as deep and blue as her own eyes, and she gazed for an instant, with a look of intense thought upon the scene before her. Then looking up in my face as I stood beside her, she placed her hand in mine, and said—“Very beautiful!”

They were her last words. The next instant, a strange, vacant expression came into those deep thoughtful eyes, a slight shudder passed over her: she leaned more and more toward me; and I had just time to kneel by her side, and catch her head upon my shoulder. I felt one faint breath fan my cheek—and Louise was gone.

(End of part first.)





Faded and gone are the Summer’s sweet flowers,

  Strewn by the wintry winds o’er the dark mould!

Smilers, when sunlight stole through the soft hours,

  Down from yon azure their leaves to unfold.

Bright were their beauties when breezes swept on

  O’er the blue waters to gather perfume;

Whisperers lovely, now faded and gone!

  Slumberers lonely ’mid dullness and gloom!

Oh! but the Spring-time will come o’er the plain

Wooing the whispering blossoms again,

With its soft tread o’er the emerald lawn—

Then we’ll not mourn for the faded and gone!


Faded and gone are the ones that we cherished,

  Fondly and true, in our bosoms of yore!

Slumbering buds may awake o’er the perished,

  Their faded hearts shall unfold here no more!

Sweet is the music that Memory flings

  O’er the oasis of Life’s early love,

Where flew the Angel on fluttering wings,

  Bearing our lost through the starlight above;

Oh! there’s a land where the perished ones bloom,

Where cometh never a shadow of gloom!

Fadeless and fair is that glorious dawn—

Then we’ll not mourn for the faded and gone!


Faded and gone are the sweet dreams of childhood,

  When the young wings of the Spirit were free,

Folded or furled ’mid the shadowy wildwood—

  Sweeping the surface of life’s sunny sea.

Time’s fading finger hath sullied the leaf,

  Stainless and lovely in childhood’s pure years;

Pages of beauty once brilliant, yet brief,

  Wear its deep impress of changes and tears!

Oh! but the blossoms of childhood will bloom

Brightly again, o’er the shadowy Tomb!

Infinite gladness flow endlessly on—

Then we’ll not murmur for the faded and gone!






It was early in the June of 184-. I had been sitting in a German railroad-car since early morning, vainly trying to amuse myself in discovering a degree of singularity in some one of the many passengers that were picked up at the different stations between Kehl and Heidelberg. I had taken a seat in the third class car, expecting there to find a miscellaneous mingling of the busy classes of Germans; but, alas, for my entertainment! it was one class too high—I should have taken the fourth. After I had chosen a seat as near comfortable as the wooden benches would admit of, I perceived, to my disappointment, that I was surrounded by that class of people, neither high enough nor low enough to be interesting; every one seemed completely wrapped up in himself. There was scarcely any conversation, and each face soon settled in the repose of quiet German thoughtfulness. Meerschaums ere long made their appearance out of the depths of profound side-pockets; and, as far as dependence on my fellow-passengers was concerned, there was none, to beguile the tedium of a long journey. A long, heart-felt pull, a quiet wink of satisfaction thereat, a somewhat varied fingering of the pipe-bowl to press the ashes—that was all. Diagonally across the car and nearly facing me, sat a very pretty girl whom, from the timid wandering of her deep-blue eyes, I judged to be unmarried. I watched her some time to observe where she recognized a protector, but her eye rested nowhere particularly; it seemed uneasy, searching, and I concluded she was going but a short distance, and alone. Just as the train was moving, a handsome young man stepped in the door, looked around the car, was recognized by a calming of the uneasy eyes, and took his seat before them, in the middle row, turning his back toward me. As he bent toward her and whispered, she did not smile, her face seemed too thoughtful; she only gazed in his eyes and spoke not a word. Ha! thought I, I see how it is, and settled myself to enjoy a morsel of sentimentality. My gentleman soon finished his first course, and then leaned back in his seat to chew the cud at his leisure. I thought he relished it very much, for it was full twenty minutes before he made another motion; during all which time the young lady did little but gaze at him, it appeared to me, with perfect satisfaction. After a time the gaze of satisfaction changed to a look of concern, and finally of marked uneasiness. She leaned forward, spoke to him, yet he heeded her not. She arose suddenly, and I was so absorbed in anxiety that I almost arose with her. He started as from a lethargy, and darted to the vacated corner, whilst she quietly took his seat and I saw her face no more. I still saw the same blue eyes in the corner, “yet I saw them but a moment,” for the lids soon closed over them, and I knew that the kind sister had given up her corner for the lazy brother to sleep in. “Corn-cobs twist his hair,” said I, for I was doubly provoked, first, at his deception, and then, I saw the pretty face no more. I did not indulge in romance again, but turned my eyes and my thoughts to the outer world. The monotony of the company made me stupid; the prolonged, premeditated winks over the smoking bowls made me drowsy, and the flitting lights and shadows of the varied scenery seemed to beckon me to dreamy lands of wine and song and ghosts and chivalry. Beyond the green slopes to the eastward, the Black Forest stretched afar to an immeasurable distance; mysterious outlines swelled and dwindled in the darkness; a huge head peered over the tree-tops; another and another; the ghouls stared at us, it seemed to me, “more in sorrow than in anger.” I could not tell why, but their malignity seemed forgotten in fear and wonder. There was a scream, a terrific scream—of the locomotive—and pell-mell, helter-skelter, heels up, head down, away they darted like a squad of frogs before a bouncing poodle. I was fully awakened to the surprising loveliness of the landscape around me, but I had little time to enjoy it—another scream, a rumble, a series of jerks, and we were at the—terminus, in Heidelberg.

I was soon in the good care of mine host of the Hoff, who certainly possesses one of the most desirable locations and establishments for entertainment in the world. Close by the railroad depot, it is about a mile from the town, and a beautiful avenue leading all the way, is lined with elms and lindens on either side. On the ascent of a steep hill which rises abruptly from the town, and about mid-way to the summit, is the celebrated ruined castle of Heidelberg, whose lords once swayed the feudal sceptre over all the surrounding country. The gay conversation at the table d’hôte was in strong contrast with the, not moodiness but apathy, of the railroad car. A large musical-box, upon the plan of our pocket toy of that name, but as large as a good-sized wardrobe—discoursed sweet music the while. The company which I found introduction to, was sufficiently entertaining to withhold me from my contemplated walk toward the ruins that evening, and the beautiful promenades in front of the hotel were quite gay. Early next morning with an agreeable English party I set out for the castle. As we neared it along the straight avenue, we advanced farther and farther from a flank view. The front came slowly out with its red towers and crumbling battlements, and the vast structure grew in the majesty of its ruins. As we approached the foot of the mount, a road crossed the avenue, leading toward the river to the left, to the right leading up the mountain. We ascended a considerable time after having lost sight of the castle, and as yet, so early was the hour, we had seen no one astir. No habitation of any kind was along this road, which, before us, appeared to descend from the solitude of the hills. We clambered up, up, up, until at last, said one:

“We surely are as high as the castle, and I do believe we ought to have taken this left-hand road just below us.”

“No, no!” said another, “let us go on and trust to fortune; for in so beautiful and romantic a place we cannot go amiss—maybe that we shall make some grand discovery, too, and then we will jointly write a book to put it before the world.”

The conversation was cut short by a noise up the road; we looked, and there stood a man leaning against a tree by the road-side, waiting for his oxen and cart which were moving slowly down the road above him. He called to his cattle in a loud voice, and hummed an air as he leaned back against the tree again. Just at that moment the piping cry of a lark rang through the wood, and ere it died away he peeled forth in boisterous answer—

“Ho! for the deep where the sea-bird sings!

 Ho! for the bowers where his merry voice rings!”

Here, as he perceived us, he halted in his strain and walked demurely by his cart. In a few words it was determined among us that we should inquire of him the road to the castle; but as each one declined the honor of gaining the information, upon the plea that perhaps his style of German might be unintelligible to the unpolite ears of the rustic, I volunteered the undertaking.

“Good morning, my friend?” I hailed him. “Be so good as to tell us the way to the castle.”

“Do you wish to see the castle?”

“That is what we have come especially for.”

“O, ’tis a magnificent sight!” (and he gazed fixedly on one of the ladies, a gay young beauty, as he spoke.) “O ’tis a magnificent sight! No one can tell better than I how beautiful it is. I have seen it in the morning when the sun was rising on it, making its red walls look like gold. I have seen it in the day, in the evening, and (I’ll tell you) I have seen it by the bright moonlight when—O, I have loved every old stone of it dearer than I do my life! But if you wish to see it, keep the right-hand road at the first fork, and follow it as far as you can, and when you come to the bower—Ah, I’ve seen it in the dark nights, too, curse it! curses on it!

“Ho! for the bowers where his merry voice rings!

 Ho! for the billows where——”

Here I lost the words of the boisterous music as he swung off and hurried to overtake his cart, leaving us all not a little astonished.

“What an eccentric person!” whispered Miss Thornton to me, the lady who had attracted his gaze in so marked a manner, and the only lady in the company who understood German.

“Ah! I see,” said I, “that admiration is never lost upon a lady, no matter from how humble a source it come. He was put beside himself, poor fellow! no wonder he appeared eccentric.”

“It was not that,” she said. “Did you not see how he changed when he spoke of the arbor, as if some remembrance associated with it excited him? No—I think there is or was some one that I look like. I would like to see any one that looks like me, no matter who she be. It’s so unusual, is it not?”

“Vain puss!”

“Then how merry he got again,” she continued, unheeding me. “No, I don’t understand such sudden changes—without any cause, too. He’s remarkably fine-looking for one in his condition—I beg pardon, sir, I wonder what bower he can mean; I never heard of any on the way to the castle.”

“Nor I, but we shall surely find one; and when we do, I fear this little incident will engage my imagination more than the historic associations of the castle.”

We journeyed on higher and higher, until we came to the fork of the road. Here nearly all were inclined to bear away to the left, around the mountain, fully satisfied that we were high enough. I explained that the young German had been very precise in his directions to keep to the right, and all yielded to him, rather to banter fortune than from persuasion that we were going the right road. On we toiled, and the road at last came to an abrupt termination upon the very summit. A high-road bore off to the right, that we could trace a mile or two over the hills, and only a tangled path led toward the west. Leaving the company to await the result, I proceeded to explore the path, and soon came in view of the town lying in the plain below. I stood enchanted with the scene. A gently sloping country receded several miles to the Rhine; meandering all the way through fields and forests, the legend-consecrated Neckar glistened in the morning sun, and beyond, the vine-clad hills of France, the country of the Moselle, crowned the horizon. Far away to the south could be traced the winding Rhine almost to its native mountains, and to the north it was lost among the hills of the Odenwald, as it widened and straightened onward toward the plains of Holland. I hailed the party as it came up, all were amazed at the magnificent landscape, and each avowed he was well repaid for the toilsome journey. A few steps farther brought us to a rugged stair of broken stones, and some ten or twelve feet below, on a small natural terrace, was an over-grown bower.

“O, the bower! the bower!” exclaimed every one. There it was; and as we reached it, a full view of the dismantled towers and crumbled walls of the castle opened below us, almost beneath our feet. The German was right. He thought we wished to see the castle, not to go to it, and we had gained the finest view of the finest ruin in the North of Europe. It is not my intention that my pen shall wander among those most interesting testimonies of grandeur passed away. Suffice it to say, we returned home well sated with pleasure, to recruit our humanity by a very late breakfast at twelve o’clock. We had walked fasting from six.

From that day the bower became one of my favorite haunts during the few weeks of my stay in Heidelberg. One day, with a view to further exploration of the heights to the eastward of the bower, a region I had often tried to get a view of from the Castle Mount, I set out on horseback, and after reaching the summit, took the road that we had seen over the hills on our first visit to the castle. For two or three miles it was nothing but steep hills and narrow valleys. Not a sound was heard save the twittering of birds and the tumbling of waters; not a particle of verdure was to be seen but the dark, distant forests, and near, the quivering foliage of the vine as it climbed up, up to the very pinnacles of the terraced heights. Beyond, the country spread out into fields and meadows and grass and waving grain. Farm-houses and villages were clustered about. Vineyards lingered upon the knolls, and scarce ventured a distance down the sunny slopes. After a long day’s ride I was approaching the bower by another road: the sun was about setting; I was tired and thirsty; when I was tempted to dismount by a little streamlet that fell into and ran down the road-side. An orchard extended from a small cottage to the road, and the gate was only upon the other side of the way. I led my horse over, and after hitching him to the gate-post, was about reaching a harvest-apple that hung near me, when my attention was drawn by a small group in front of the cottage door. An old gray-haired man was sitting upon a bench watching a young child that was rolling on the grass, when my appearance put an end to his occupation. He looked at me with no expression of pleasure, evidently not relishing so unceremonious an attempt upon his orchard. I resigned my thieving intention, and covered the manœuvre by an advance straight up to the door. A young woman arose and picked up the child, and then resumed her seat upon the grass-plat.

“Good evening, my friend,” said I, for his silence was awkward—“I am very tired and warm with a long ride, and was tempted by that cool spring and your shady trees to dismount and take a moment’s rest. I am glad to take my rest in such good company.”

“You are welcome,” said he. “I perceive you are a stranger; an Englishman I suppose?”

“No, I am not an Englishman; I am come from a land much farther off than England, and have seen a great many Germans in my country. I am an American.”

“What’s that he says, Mary?” cried a voice from within the house. “Tell him Roderick is not at home; tell him he wont be at home till to-morrow.”

“Hush! do, mother! The gentleman has not come for Roderick.”

“O, yes he has. He knows Roderick has got money and wants to spend it. You know—”

“Do hush, mother! It’s a stranger, and what’s more, it’s an American.”

“What does he say about Karl? Ask him when Karl is coming back.”

The tears started to the young woman’s eyes; and as I saw her press her babe to her bosom, I knew who Karl was. She seemed to struggle with the question that rose to her lips:

“You said, sir, that you have seen many Germans in America: did you ever see anybody there from Heidelberg? Did you ever see Karl Wagner there?”

I told her, I never saw Karl Wagner there, and asked her if Karl might be her husband; which fact I knew, however, before I asked. She answered, that he was; that he was living at a place called Buffalo, and had lately sent her money to take her to another place called New York, where she would meet him. Her father was anxious that she should go, but her mother, who was now doating, would resent the very mention of it, and was always expecting Karl to come home. Her brother Roderick, she said, had been unfortunate, and was bent on going with her; but of this, her mother knew nothing. They were afraid to tell her, her reason was so weak that they feared she would sink into utter imbecility.

The sun was set, and night was drawing on. I arose to resume my journey, for I was anxious to reach the foot of the mount before dark; but the old man offered me a plate of the harvest-apples that had tempted me, and pressed me to take some supper with them. If I would only be so kind—they wished to ask me so many questions about America. I am not sure that I should have accepted their invitation had not my eye, as I arose, fallen upon a picture hanging against the opposite wall of the little room. A second glance showed the marked and benevolent features of the old man, looking out from the canvas.

“Ha—ha!” said he, “that is a fine picture. Step in the door, and you will see more of them.”

I did so, and to my surprise, beheld four others hanging wherever space enough could be found to contain them. One was the portrait of the old woman whom I now saw for the first time; another of Mary, and the remaining two were, a young man apparently thirty years of age, and a boy of sixteen. The old man followed me with his eyes.

“Ha—ha!” said he. “I see you admire them. Poor Roderick! There are few who can beat him in his art—but you would not think so to see him now. These are the last he ever made. He paid his last tribute to those he loved best.”

The old man spoke in a very sorrowful tone. I began to feel a deep interest in Roderick, whatever his misfortunes might be.

“Is not Roderick your son?” I asked, supposing that I must have made a mistake.

“Yes—that one I suppose you don’t know; that’s Karl Wagner, that’s Mary’s husband—a good son he is. And that’s Tommy, that’s our Tommy—sturdy Tommy, as they call him. That’s the last one Roderick ever made.” And the old man brushed his eyes with his shriveled hands as he spoke.

“Where does Roderick live?” I asked. “Is he married?”


“Why is it, that a young man of such talent gives up a glorious art, when it opens a field to him to enable him to rise above his condition, to gain wealth, honor, fame?”


“Go, ask Count Reisach!” cried the old woman, starting up. She was in a frenzy. Her eyes glared, her bent form trembled from head to foot, her hands were clenched, but hung dangling at her side, and she seemed to make superhuman efforts to raise them. They were paralyzed. Tears coursed each other down her cheeks as she cried—“Go ask Count Reisach! Go find him! Go ask poor Father Klaus! Go down and ask Almighty God why he let—oh!” she cried, sinking on her knees—her voice choked; sobs, spasms convulsed her frame; still her face was raised, it seemed to me in prayer, but her hands clasped not, they seemed to weigh her to the earth, as they hung lifeless beside her.

“Mein Got! O, mein Got!” cried the old man, as he took her in his arms. “O, my poor frau—would to God thy poor spark of reason would go out, that I might see this heavy burden off thy soul!”

He raised her tenderly as a child, repelling my assistance, and when he had placed her in her arm-chair, left her to Mary’s care, and came to resume his seat upon the bench, outside the door.

“She never grieved so for herself, and she has had her own troubles too. But she knows not all yet—O, mein Got! mein Got! who will tell her—for he must, he must, he must!”

He closed his eyes—as it were—to shut out so near a view of misery. A loud voice was heard approaching in the road, and as it became more distinct, I started as I recognized the words—

“Ho for the deep where the sea-bird sings!

 Ho for the bowers where his merry voice rings,

 Ho for the billows, the billows, the billows!”

Here the gate flew open, and my acquaintance of castle memory stalked up the path, followed by a sturdy lad.

“Father, it’s all arranged,” he bawled. “It’s all arranged. I’ve made up my mind. There are three in Heidelberg—”

“Ho for the billows where the storm-king dwells!”

“Stop, Roderick. You know your mother. See, too, here is a stranger.” He paused, saluted me as though he had never seen me before, and turned to the youth who followed him.

“Where are the cattle, Tommy? That’s right—you must be smart, you know; remember what’s on your shoulders!”

Tommy said he knew, and was going to be smart. Mary appeared at the door and invited us to supper. The mother was gone, and the old man seemed relieved when he missed her, for he looked around the room, and the cloud left his brow, ere he asked a blessing on his humble table. After supper he lighted his pipe; Tommy took his hat and disappeared, and Roderick touched my arm as he moved toward the door. His boisterous humor was gone, and he calmly and mannerly asked me to be seated.

“She is worse to-night,” he said. “They have sent Tommy for him.” After a moment, he continued; “I recognized you at first, and for my rudeness I must plead the state of mind I was in. The truth is, I have this day arranged my departure for America, to take my sister to her husband; and the relief from the burden of suspense I had long been in made me quite forgetful of myself.”

“I do not know,” said I, “that you are doing best in taking this course. You are an artist, and I must bear witness to the promise of success you make in your art; but, as I begin to feel a deep interest in yourself, your family, and—I think I may say with truth—in your sorrows, for some strange misfortune seems to brood over this house, I feel at liberty to remonstrate with you for abandoning what seems to me your duty to yourself, and your father’s family. I could not give you hope of better success where you purpose going than you would probably meet with here. The best of our own artists reside in Europe, for we have no models at home. Have you always lived here with your parents?”

“Until within the last few weeks I spent most of my time in the town; my occupation kept me very much from home. Of late, I have done nothing but assist my father here.”

“It seems to me that you might assist him more with your brush than with your ox-goad.”

“If I could use it perhaps I might; but I can paint no more here. I am going, and Tommy and I have trimmed his vines and sown his crops, and when Tommy shall be able to take care of the vines himself, I shall be gone.”

“That is where I cannot excuse you. You are not suffering from poverty; you are not driven to emigrate; and it is in leaving your infirm parents when they are bowed down by affliction that I think you do not do your duty by them. They both seem proud of you, and still—you appear to love them as you ought.”

“The affliction is mine! You were at the bower?”


“Well, I could go there with you, and tell you a tale of sorrow that you would never forget. You cannot judge. I know that my father and my poor, fond mother grieve—it is for me; but what is their grief to mine? It is but the reflection of mine; it is like the cold, borrowed light of the moon—mine, the scorching sun. I am plunged from heaven into hell! This spot is to me, now, of all the world, like the deepest abyss of infernal misery; and, but for Father Klaus, our good old priest, this shadow of hell had, ere this, been bartered for the reality. He has kept alive a spark of reason in me, that I hope may yet guide me through the world. Here he is—I see they have sent Tommy for him. She always forgets her own sorrow, when she sees him.”

“Well Roderick, my son,” said the old priest, as he paused at the door, “I fear you have been imprudent again. These outbursts of yours will bring the poor old mother to the grave. You have heard something since, and it has set you beside yourself, poor boy.”

“No, Father, I have heard nothing since I told you Count Reisach was in Cologne; that is three weeks ago, and from that time I have sought no news but for your sake. The only news I have to tell you is, that my departure for America is determined upon; I have made up my mind to go.”

“That’s right; that’s right!”

“You will tell her?”

“Leave it to me. God will surely temper the wind; but not to-night, not to-night!” And he sighed as he entered the house and left us alone again.

The moon was just rising, and as I pressed the poor fellow’s hand (poor fellow, I knew he was a poor fellow. I pitied him sincerely, but I knew not why), he returned the pressure warmly, and asked permission to visit me the following day. I appointed an hour, and galloped over the hilly road toward home. As I approached the end of the path that led off to the bower, I could not help turning my eyes thither, my mind was full of Roderick, and I could not disconnect the idea of him from the idea of the bower. Had I known his story then as I do now, I could have sighed with the sighing trees, that shook and sighed all night on the gloomy Castle Mount.

I knew that I had a treat in store for Miss Thornton. I knew what fresh interest I would awaken, when I should tell her that the rough peasant was an accomplished artist. That evening and the next morning, it was a subject she always recurred to when we were alone, she would talk of nothing else, and frequently sought opportunities of conversing apart.

The next day, Roderick appeared at the appointed hour, but his garb was changed. He wore no longer the coarse clothes of a peasant, and I could not but observe that his altered exterior harmonized much better with his bearing, and his intellectual features. Several of the party who had made with me the morning excursion to the Castle Mount were still at Heidelberg, and as we frequently met on our rounds upon the promenade, she was the only one, of all, who recognized my companion. His object seemed to be to learn, as far as my judgment extended, the probable prospects that awaited him in the United States, in the prosecution of his art. He dwelt upon the subject calmly, and was perfectly self-possessed until we approached Miss T., when he stopped, and regarded her with the same fixed gaze that I had remarked upon our first interview. From that moment he was a changed person. A strange uneasiness seemed to take possession of him. His face was pale, and at last he turned abruptly down the avenue. I followed him, and cast one look back at her, ere I started. She and her companion had paused; he was speaking to unheeding ears, for her gaze was fixed on us, her face was pale, and wore the expression of sudden alarm. He led me hastily along the avenue; I followed, I scarce knew why: but he could have led me anywhere. After a while—

“I cannot tell you,” said he, “until we reach the bower.”

And we began to ascend the mountain. At last, we pushed aside the briars that blockaded the little, descending path that led to the bower. The magnificent ruins appeared spread out below us, and I half forgot the sorrows of my eccentric friend in lively feelings of pleasure. After a pause, which I was unwilling to interrupt (for I saw in his countenance, in his whole bearing, evidence of a severe interior struggle), he said—

“When I am able to reflect, I know that I am imposing on your generosity in some way, but I scarce know how. It is only your goodness which has prompted you to undergo all this fatigue and trouble; and now I feel bound, I wish to open my heart to you, but it seems as though all I can tell you cannot compensate you. At any rate, it will be a relief to me, and hereafter it may help the vividness of your recollections of Heidelberg. I thought I should never tell this story, or speak this name again; but that lady recalled, in so many ways, so lively an image of my lost Ella, that I must unburden my heart of its excess. She was the niece of Father Klaus. Her parents died when she was very young, and the good old man took her into his own charge. No parent could have loved her more, or watched over her with more tender solicitude than he did. As she grew up, he taught her many things which, but for him, would have been entirely beyond her reach; but she repaid him, for an apter scholar never learned, and never had man a child who loved him more. She grew to be very beautiful, and was talked of for her beauty all the country round; but I had won her heart when it was a child’s, and as we grew up my only fear in life was for that, and all my efforts were only for that. Father Klaus knew how matters stood nearly as soon as we, and was contented. When we grew up, he ratified and blessed our betrothal, and turned his attention to my own prospects. Through his influence with the old Count Reisach, I was enabled to enter the academy of Heidelberg, and, thanks to the count’s generosity and patronage, I had laid up nearly enough to gain Father Klaus’s consent to our marriage. The day was fixed; but nearly a year distant, and the good old man was to perform the ceremony himself. Often, and often, as I returned home from town have I turned down this path, and here was Ella waiting for me, to sit a while, and then stroll home together. Here we built this very bower, when we were children, with our own hands. She chose the place. Here we would sit and watch the setting sun; and I, as a proud young artist, would descant to her upon the harmony of the glowing colors, scarce brighter than her own bright eyes and glowing cheeks. Here would we come and spend hours together—she would bring her needle, and I would sketch the castle, the mountain, the town, the plain, the forest, and every object that could afford a pretext for remaining. Sometimes, when she was very busy, I would gaze, and gaze into her sweet face and forget every thing but that. Then she would look up and smile, and come and bend her head over my shoulder to see the progress of my sketching, and find the whole sheet covered over with images of herself, and Ella, Ella, Ella, scribbled in every form, and ornamented with every possible device. Then she would steal her little hand over my eyes, and say I was a ‘lazy, lazy boy.’ Perhaps, sir, you cannot know why I speak of these little things, and you may deem them trifling; but, sir, it is a true saying that life is made up of trifles. It was so that she wound about me a web that could not be unwound; all these endearing trifles cannot be reversed, one by one, and the web uncoiled. There is but one method of release, and that is, by a mighty effort to burst the whole fabric—even then, the shreds will hang about, and float in every breath of memory. Here, time after time, we repeated our vows of love and fidelity, and eagerly looked forward to the day that would crown our happiness.

“In the meantime Count Reisach died, and his son, a youth of some twenty years, succeeded to the estates. He was known ere that time, through all the land, for his boldness, courtliness and generosity, courted and sought by all the nobility and gentry—for he was handsome and rich. Moreover, he was a connoisseur in almost all the fine arts. I was often employed by him in copying his paintings for presents to his friends. Once he induced me to part with a portrait of Ella, which I was very proud of, and which he had seen at Father Klaus’s. I often saw him there. One evening last April, as I was returning from town, I turned down the path, for I knew I should meet Ella here. I was startled by a shriek. I cried, Ella! Ella! In a moment I was here upon the spot, and she rushed into my arms, weeping and frightened. To all my questions as to what had alarmed her, she only sobbed. I seated her, and examined all about the bower; I thought of serpents, and searched under rocks, peered over the bushy precipice, but could discover nothing. We could not sit and enjoy that evening—she was agitated, and I led her home. She did not go often to the bower after that. One evening, it might be a fortnight after, upon appointment, I came here again to meet her, and I found her weeping. As before, I took her home. Another time, she was not weeping, but seemed silent, thoughtful, depressed. We went home again. I was puzzled, pained; I knew not what to think or do, and she revealed nothing to all my entreaties. She would not go to the bower any more. At times she wore a deadly paleness for days, and again she would glow with a flush, as though a fresh impulse were given to her life. She was evidently declining. All the neighbors watched and pitied “poor Ella;” they pitied Father Klaus, but none knew the extent of the agony I nursed in secret. When I would beg her to walk with me to the bower that her and my childish hands had built, and where we always were so happy, she would turn pale and tremble—I dared not speak to her of the bower any more. Frequently I would detect her eye resting upon me as if in pain, as though she pitied me; a starting tear would glisten in her eye for a moment, and she would turn away; immediately she would be as composed as before. I was pained, shocked; and a presentiment of some awful calamity seized me. One evening I was detained in town later than usual. I had been for several days employed in restoring a painting for Count Reisach, and the next day would see it finished. ‘It is not finished yet,’ he whispered. The count had hurried me to work early and late. It was a relief to be so busily employed. As I wended my way up the mountain, I thought of Ella all the way—I must go to her that evening, tired as I was. When I came to the end of the path, I could not resist a moment’s visit to the bower; for since pleasure there seemed to be henceforth forbidden fruit to me, I longed for a moment even of its pain. It was growing dark, and as I brushed past yonder bush, I thought I saw something move, just where you sit. I stopped, and distinctly saw the cloaked figure of a man disappear down that precipice. I rushed forward, for thoughts of some dark crime crowded upon me, and I nearly fell upon the prostrate form of a woman at my feet. I knelt, and raised the head upon my knees; it was bare, and the dark locks uncoiled upon the ground.”

Here he paused. I never before or since beheld such a mute picture of agony. He lowered his head upon his hands, and the big drops fell fast upon the ground. He tried not to restrain them. At length he raised his eyes inquiringly, and I feared not to say,

It was Ella.

He nodded. After a few minutes, which I indulged him in without a question or remark, he continued—

“I bounded, as if stung by a serpent, and I hurried to Father Klaus. I told him, I know not what. Then I hurried home; and for days, they told me, I raved. When I recovered I learned that they were gone.”


“Count Reisach. No traces of them could be found until within three weeks, when we learned that they had been in Cologne.”

“Were they—” I could not finish; he gave me an inquiring look, and I thought his severe part was going to be acted again. I had not the heart to think of it more.

“From that time my poor mother has been a paralytic, and now we fear her reason is almost gone. Father Klaus is an older man, but his feelings are all for others; he is constantly with her. Now, do you wonder that I hate this spot, and all that I can see from here? Here have I known my happiest and bitterest moments. From this day I see you no more!” exclaimed he, starting to his feet, and gazing on the work of his hands: “Here I bid an eternal, an eternal farewell to you and—” He took his pencil and wrote (he would not speak it)—I looked—“Ella Corbyn.”

“Her father was an Englishman,” he said.

I pressed his hand—“Adieu!”


“To meet again?”

“To meet again,” said I; and we parted. As he disappeared over the brow of the hill, I could hear the poor fellow trying to lighten his crushed heart with his boisterous sea-song. The next morning Mr. Thornton and his daughter left for England.

A few weeks after that I was in Paris. Months rolled by; September was come, and Roderick’s story had nearly slipped from my mind. One fine evening I was sauntering along the Champs Elysées, where one is sure to see at that time, all the notables that may be luxuriating in the French capital; when I recognized in a gay equipage the beautiful features of Miss Thornton. She was paler than when I had seen her last, but still very beautiful. I watched her some moments, to catch her eye; and when she did look toward me, I took the liberty of saluting her. She flushed, and turned her head aside, but did not acknowledge the salutation.

“So much for my impudence,” said I; and I saluted no one else that evening.

A day or two after, I was dining with some friends at Vantini’s. Opposite us at the table d’hôte, were two vacant chairs.

“We are unfortunate to-day,” said my friend, “for I was anxious you should see a very pretty English girl who sits opposite. Clara,” said he, turning to his wife, “what is the name of our little beauty across the table? I never can think of it, for I can’t help calling her Miss Mary.”

“Oh,” said Mrs. F., “I wish you to know them—so agreeable; and going on a tour through the United States. They are a Mr. and Miss Thornton—father and daughter; and as you are going soon, I do wish you could go together.”

“So, so!” thought I; “here is a little bit of adventure if they only come in.” And I consoled myself with the thought that I could not come out of it worst. Soon a couple of servants ushered a lady and gentleman along the hall, and Mr. and Miss Thornton appeared before me, she glowing with health and beauty. They both greeted me warmly, which somewhat astonished my friends as well as myself. I was taken aback, but I had been not a little nettled, and was determined not to be outdone, so said as little as I could.

“Why!” said Mrs. F., “you are old friends, then! All my anxiety was thrown away!”

“I supposed we were,” said I, “until last Tuesday evening.”

“Last Tuesday evening!” exclaimed Miss T. “Why, what happened? You puzzle me.”

“Merely that I took the liberty of recognizing an old friend, and was cut—that’s all.”

“You puzzle me still more. Where were you at the time?”

“Below the place d’étoile.”

“Are you sure it was on Tuesday?”

“Perfectly sure.”

She burst into a laugh, and her father smiled.

“It must have been the longest cut I ever gave in my life. I only wish I could cut that far off—I know some who should suffer”—and she laughed again. “It’s the first time I ever heard of a sane gentleman, standing in the Champs Elysées, to take off his hat to a lady in Brussels.”

The laugh was decidedly against me, and we were soon on the best of terms.

That night a new train of thoughts engaged me. Poor Roderick’s story returned, and the memory of his grief with all its thrilling intensity. Had I seen Ella? It must be. That pale, thoughtful, hiding countenance could be only hers. Poor Roderick! I feel for you deeply! I wonder if your sorrow feels any alleviation in your new country! I fear not.

The next day I made sufficient inquiry to certify me that I had seen Count Reisach, and with him, Ella. I saw them once again, it was for a moment, and she seemed paler still; as I gazed, again she turned her face away. Poor Ella! how she shrank from the eyes of men! There was a deep remorse preying upon that wasting beauty; a secret sorrow and shame blighting every bud of pleasure and of hope. How bitter will thy end soon be, poor trusting, fragile daughter of Eve!

I saw them no more. I walked every day with Miss Thornton to show her the lady that she so closely resembled; but we did not see them. They were probably seeking new scenes to beguile her short life of its fleeting days.

A few weeks after, we were in Havre, awaiting the sailing of the first packet ship for New York. We had determined to “go together,” as Mrs. F. had desired, and our rooms were taken in the Zurich, one of the fleetest of the line. At that time, a line of French government steamships was plying between Havre and New York; and one, which was advertised to sail on the day we arrived, was to be detained some ten days, to undergo a repairing of machinery. Havre is the great port of emigration for the French, German, and Swiss emigrants; and the French steamships, offering low fares and speedy passage, generally sailed with their between-decks well filled with emigrant passengers. On this occasion, some two hundred poor creatures had engaged passage upon the detained vessel, and few had the means to await in Havre her postponed day of departure; consequently there was a rush upon the office of the sailing packets. We went aboard about 3 o’clock, P. M. The lower deck was crowded with steerage-passengers; and a single glance sufficed to show that they were three-fourths Germans. I could not help wondering how many of the two hundred poor emigrants below me, I might have seen before, as I journeyed through their country a few months ago. Many a one, I thought, I might have seen before his cottage door, or through the window of his work-shop, ere poverty had at last decreed, that he must go to the land beyond the seas, far from his fatherland.

The ship was moving from the dock. The crowds upon the piers cheered us on. The stars and stripes sprung into the breeze. O, how my heart bounded to feel again the protection of my country’s flag! The first time, for years, did the feeling of home thrill through my bosom: and tears of patriotic love and pride rushed to my eyes. I was going home;—there they stood in melancholy groups, gazing their last on land contiguous to their own, upon the receding shores of the old world. The tri-colors in the distance soon faded into one indefinable hue. The green hills of Normandy came forth once again; but “twilight gray soon in her sable livery all things clad;” and we were away, away upon the sea. After tea, we all came upon deck. The last loom of the land was fading away; and my thoughts and feelings, memory and fancy, were busy with home before, and the friends and associations I was leaving behind—perhaps forever. I was overflowing with expectation and regret. Miss T. stood beside me, kindly hearkening to my outpouring feelings. The emigrants were all below, save a few scattered ones, and a larger group gathered about the fore-mast. They were leaving country, home, kindred, all, to seek a refuge in a foreign land: I was leaving friends that I had made in many lands; countries and scenes made dear to me by long and intimate association; returning to a home wherein death had made sad changes during my long sojourn: she was going on a trip of pleasure, and present enjoyment was her occupation. Suddenly I heard an exclamation—“Oh!” and I thought she was taken ill. I looked, and she was pointing to the group around the mast; I saw and recognized a face I could never forget. We continued to gaze in astonishment. The few women who were there were all in tears; one, whose head was bowed upon her knees, sobbed violently. The men were drinking farewell to Fatherland, and many an absent friend and fair, was pledged by name. Then there was a cry for “a song!” “a song!”—“Let’s have a song from Roderick!” Immediately there pealed out those boisterous but musical tones that I had heard before, far away from there. My heart thrilled as I listened. Every voice hushed. Even the sailor, as he trod the deck, paused to listen to that fine, deep voice, as it rang through the ship.



Ho for the deep where the sea-bird sings!

Ho for the bowers where his merry voice rings!

Ho for the billows where the storm-king dwells!

Ho for the winding of the merry-maids’ shells!

Ho for the storm where the lightning’s flash!

Ho for the fury of the merry waves’ dash!

The spray and the roar and the thunder’s crash!

Ho for the breeze that shall cling to the mast!

Ho for the day when the storms shall be past!

Then hail to the home that the outcast sighs for!

Hail to the liberty the patriot dies for!

Hail to the great who will ne’er cast scorn to us!

Hail to the land where the free shall be born to us!

But alas for the friends that we leave far away!

And alas for the tears when there breaks another day!

Alas for the wo that shall bow the hoary heads!

And alas for the home where another step treads!

Alas for the murmuring hill-side rills!

And alas for the shadow on the ever-green hills!

Alas for the weeping of the purple-crowned vine!

And alas for the glory of the golden-rimmed wine!

Farewell to the land where our forefather’s sleep!

And we’ll hie to our rest on the wide-spread deep.

Farewell to the vine, to the home, and the tears!

And we’ll dream of the land where the good ship steers!

As the last sound died away upon the water, the singer caught sight of me, and the fair girl beside me, and disappeared from the deck. The listeners, as they dispersed to their several meditations, took up the words of the song; each one whatever best suited his feelings at the time. It was strange to read the various echoes as they rebounded spontaneously from the hearts of the emigrants. When the air of the song was forgotten the words were not, and each sang or mumbled them to music of his own—sometimes wild and pretty, sometimes discordant enough. One would long for

“The deep where the sea-bird sings,”

and I knew he had not many regrets for what he left behind. Another, a drunken wretch, yelled

“For the fury of the merry waves’ dash,

 The spray and the roar and the thunder’s crash.”

An old man, as he stole away, uttered a plaintive moan

“For the home that the outcast sighs for;”

and I thought I could read in his furrowed face traces of a life of penury and suffering. He was going with a lightened heart, transplanted in his decaying age. But by far the greater part dwelt upon the memory of their forsaken homes and kindred; their thoughts were gazing afar upon “the shadow on the ever-green hills.” Ere long they had nearly all disappeared, gone to their crowded chamber to be rocked asleep. Only a few women remained beneath the suspended lantern, seated by the mast. The one I had noticed weeping, had not raised her head during all this time. When she did raise it, she looked up to heaven and her face shone with religious fervor. The tears still flowed as she breathed her heart-felt prayer. I could see every movement of her lips, and I alone perhaps, of all who saw, could tell the source of every tear that flowed. I felt awed, unconscious of myself. My whole being seemed merged in the intensity of hers. A supplication sprang unbidden to my lips for the paralytic mother, for the gray-haired father, in their utter, utter loneliness; for it was Mary with her baby on her bosom. She spoke calmly, slowly, solemnly.



Let us bow, lowly now, ere we seek forgetfulness

In the blest balm of rest, of trial-worn spirit’s fretfulness,

Let us call, first of all, pity on our parents’ age,

For they’re chastened, for they’re hastened on their ending pilgrimage.

O be mild to them, child to them, gentle son of Bethlehem!

Never suffer that their rougher path bring sooner death to them!

O remember that December passes cheerlessly away—

Let their sorrow, on the morrow, mind thee of its Christmas day!

And leave us not, grieve us not, Father of the wandering!

Care for us, spare for us, now while time is squandering!

We are going, far, unknowing, strangers into stranger land—

But with thee only we’re not lonely, resting in thy hollow hand!”

This was the woman’s prayer—and I devoutly responded “Amen,” as I wiped my eyes and went below. I thought of the poor old man, the helpless mother, Tommy, the bower, all, and I became unconsciously an actor in the scene before me, as I prayed—

“O remember that December passes cheerlessly away!

 Let their sorrow, on the morrow, mind thee of its Christmas day!”

The next day Roderick did not appear upon the deck; in truth there were very few who did. After indulging him a few days, which I charged to account of sea-sickness, and still not seeing him, I found my way into the steerage, and found the poor fellow more sick in mind than in body. He had spent the greater part of his money in trying to drown his grief; and now that he thought he had nearly succeeded, he looked none the better for the success. That face, he said, so like hers, he could not escape from now; he must remain near it for days, weeks. He could almost curse the ill-favored steamship, whose delay had not only doomed him to the crowded steerage of the packet, but to weeks of torture he could not escape from. He would not appear at all upon deck, and the air of the between-decks was almost poisonous. In a few days he was confined to his berth with a burning fever. I had confided to Miss Thornton every thing, except the history of Ella, which I disguised in such a way as not to diminish her sympathies for the invalid. One day, to my great astonishment, she had, with her father, gone to minister to him, and spoke with gladness of the better condition she had left him in. He talked to her very tenderly of Ella. They went, she and her kind father, to visit him every day. I saw how the fire was consuming him, and endeavored to interpose. I told Mr. Thornton every thing, all; but they did not see his condition as I did. Whenever I would go, strange! he would always beg me not to let them delay coming; but he was so exhausted with fever, that I attributed this wonderful change, rather to imbecility or delirium, than to a change of resolution. Poor Mary was always by her brother’s side: even her poor babe lay neglected for him. More than a fortnight he lay in this miserable condition; yet I was more than sorry when I felt in his pulse the returning slow beat of health, and saw his eye calm into quiet enjoyment of the congratulations which poured in upon him. I was shocked. It is true a mountain of misery was moved away, but his reason was gone. Miss Thornton went once again to visit him, only once: and I shall never forget her look of agony and self-reproach as she returned rather hastily to her room. I never knew what passed at that interview. Perhaps she saw for the first time, that while she deemed she was soothing his misery by her presence, she had fed it to madness. He rapidly recovered and seemed happy, for he always smiled when he asked me why the captain kept Ella locked up in the cabin and sent her tender messages—which I dared not give. The last I ever saw of him was in New York, when I was about to leave the ship. A young man came aboard as we hauled up to the wharf, and I knew from the portrait I had seen in the cottage in Germany, that it was Karl Wagner. He soon found them; and the last I saw of poor Roderick, as I went ashore, he was unfolding to the astonished Karl a scheme he had to get Ella away from the captain, whilst poor Mary hung upon her husband’s arm, her heart bursting with joy and grief.



Be it remembered that Roderick, in speaking to me on the Mount of Heidelberg Castle, said—“Her father was an Englishman.” It was true. He was the younger son of a noble English house, though Ella lived until her twentieth year unconscious of the fact. She knew he was an Englishman, she knew he had been a soldier, but of his family she knew nothing. Better far had it been for her had she remained forever in ignorance of every circumstance of her ancestral distinction, or had she had some other instructor than he who craftily sowed the seeds of pride and discontent, that he might reap a glowing harvest of the charms of a lovely woman, to her soul’s utter desolation. By night and by stealth, like the Evil One, did he sow tares among the richest grain, among a perfect luxuriance of womanly virtues; by day, too, like the husbandman when the time of the harvest comes, did he pluck up weed and fruit, did he trample on pride and virtue, and cast them forth together to wither under the scorching solstice of remorse and shame. He tore away the flower and left the stem to die. Poor, poor Ella! the only jewel of both soul’s and body’s inheritance was charmed away—what wonder then that both should droop in poverty, or that, making common friendship from common desolation, these mutual foes, the only ones religion ever made, should compromise to each other the loss of both health and principle, in fatal reconciliation and despair!

The father of Ella Corbyn, an officer in the British army, was disabled in action during the Peninsular war, and after the peace of 1815, retired to the continent, where he married the beautiful Katrina Klaus, supported himself and Katrina many years on his half-pay, until about the period of Ella’s birth, when he and the half-pay departed together. His daughter, of course, had no recollection of him, and never possessed more than the one single article of his property, a miniature on ivory, of a lady, young, but by no means beautiful. She never knew who it was; her mother could not tell her when she first gave it into little Ella’s tiny hands, but supposed it was some one of Mr. Corbyn’s family, probably a sister—and so the matter rested for the while. The neighbors could tell her scarcely any thing of her father; they had seen him when he first came into the neighborhood, but his marriage with his beautiful wife, and subsequent removal to a neighboring village, followed so quickly, that they could give no account of him, nor further description than that of his personal appearance. Of the circumstances attending his death all they knew was, that two strangers stopped one afternoon at the public-house, that Mr. Corbyn spent part of the evening with them and went home early; the next morning he was shot in a duel, but the old captain who stood his friend in the affair, thought it no business of his to inquire what the difficulty was about. He left no property of any value, and his widow supported herself and Ella on her little patrimony four years longer, when she, too, died and left the child a helpless orphan. This was the time for her uncle, the priest, to come to her assistance. He took her into his care and provided for her early education by consigning her to the Sisters of Charity in Cologne. Here she remained five years; and when her good uncle, deeming that he could, with better justice to his finances, superintend her further progress at home, took her back, she displayed so much ability and judgment that she soon reigned, a little queen, over his modest household.

Ella was in truth a lovely child. In her earlier days, when she played alone by the road-side, before the priest’s lawn, not a stranger passed but stopped to take a second look at that bright, spiritual little face, gazing half-smilingly, half-pensively, half-hidden beneath dark ribbons of straying locks. Her complexion was exceedingly fair, not blonde; her features, not classical, were petits and regular; her face sufficiently full, but playful every where—a pretty child: but from almost infancy the striking characteristic of her face was soul; never did it appear inanimate, never did it lack character—even in her sleep the marked corners of the softly-closed lips and little, dimpled brow, betokened self-possession; but when she smiled, a perfect sunshine of thought and feeling overspread her countenance, and she was irresistibly beautiful. As might be expected, the five years’ tuition she had enjoyed had developed the intellectuality of her beauty apace with the cultivation of her mind, and wherever and whenever a childish passion lay suppressed by growing religious principle, its disappearance gave place upon her countenance to the sublime, triumphant sentiment that crushed it. Mr. Klaus, or as he was termed by his parishioners, Father Klaus, was passably skilled in music; and under his systematic instruction Ella soon became the most accomplished vocalist in his country-choir. The old Count Reisach had, in church, frequently heard and appreciated the superior qualities of her voice, and after a few Sundays, called at the parsonage to pay his compliments in person to the young singer whom fame had already made so conspicuous. Little Ella, when summoned into the presence of the count, made her courtesy modestly but not diffidently, and he, charmed with the graces of her person and behavior, took pains immediately to win upon her confidence, so that she soon sang to him all her prettiest songs; whilst Father Klaus sat smiling by, perfectly happy in the joy of his triumph. When the old nobleman arose to depart, he stood with his hand upon the child’s glossy head, and declared he never saw such a singer; then, as he turned up to his gaze that little face so beaming with beauty and intelligence, he promised by the faith of his knighthood that next Sunday should see her talent well rewarded. Next Sunday afternoon arrived a large case for Ella. How she danced to see it opened! and when it was opened, how she danced and clapped her hands around one of the prettiest harps that ever was seen! This was an era in her life. Every day would see her and her uncle before the parlor window blundering over the harp-strings, often in vain attempts to puzzle out an accompaniment. It was a new instrument to him as well as to her. Time, however, and perseverance can conquer all things, and ere two months were past, Ella might be seen every evening seated beneath a linden that shaded the cottage door, gracefully sweeping her harp in accompaniment of the wildest songs of her Fatherland; anon would she lift her melting eyes to heaven as she touched the trembling chords to the softer melody of a Virgin’s evening hymn. The old priest would be absorbed in his breviary, as he paced the graveled walk; he had long since given up the race, and the little scholar had left him immeasurably behind. It was not wonderful that Ella became the admired of all the country around even at that early age: but she bore her honors so becomingly, with so much modesty and simplicity, that—wonderful to say—there was not one among her companions who did not love her. She was so gentle and so good.

In the Bower of Castle Mount, I said that Roderick told me that Father Klaus was aware of the growing attachment between him and Ella, almost as soon as themselves. In this, two circumstances may seem strange—first, that she, educated, accomplished, admired, courted, should fancy a poor, plain, hardy country-lad like Roderick; and secondly, that her uncle should approve and encourage her in such a fancy. Roderick’s family was very humble, scarcely above a peasant’s condition; but in this regard she placed herself upon a perfect equality with him, and never gave the matter much consideration. The truth is, she had loved him with a childish love before she knew that there existed any other. The first summer after she returned from Cologne, regularly every Saturday afternoon or festival eve, would he come to help her gather flowers for the altar. This office of decking the altar is only performed by the hands of virgins, and when one enters into the state of matrimony she no longer takes her place among the servants of the sanctuary. Our young pair (he was but four years older than she) would wander off to the woods together, and Roderick would climb the highest rocks for moss, or some stray flower blooming alone; and carry the heavy basket. At times he would strip off his shoes, and, Paul and Virginia-like, stagger with his beloved burden across the streams. When evening approached, he would mock the squirrels, the partridges, the wood-robins and the katy-dids, and put the whole forest in tune before its time, to Ella’s ineffable delight. Often, when he had doffed his jacket and thrown it down for her to sit upon, would he recline upon his arm, his hat drawn over his brow, pensive and melancholy; and sometimes a tear would trickle down, as the truth forced itself upon him, that, despite their intimacy, fortune, and fortune only, had placed an insurmountable barrier between him and the idol of his thoughts and dreams. He would beg her to love him, and she would readily answer that she did love him.

“Better than all the other boys?”

“Yes, better than all the other boys.”

Still he was not satisfied. He felt that she did not mean the same kind of love that he did; he was doubtful even if she knew any thing about it. How should he ascertain? He could not ask her if she would marry him: no, that would be breaking the ice of a new and unfathomable current, and he might lose the tenure of the ground he then possessed; besides, he felt a secret, indefinable shame, and could not proffer the words. He looked very wo-begone. Ah! he had it at last.

He did not mean like, he meant, did she love him better than all the other boys?

Yes, she loved him better; she said so before.

The secret of his new discovery was burning; he blushed. At last it came.

Did she love him better than all the girls?

The poor boy was breathless.

Yes, she thought she loved him better than all the girls?

The mighty weight had turned out a feather; he knew no more than he did before. Many a time did the poor fellow try to hit the mark from afar off, but always with the same success. He persevered with the same affectionate devotion, her very slave; and it was not until several years after, when he became assured of more than one suitor’s rejection, that he summoned courage to address her plainly, and received an answer to his heart’s content.

That Father Klaus approved the betrothal of Roderick and his niece, may not seem wonderful. He knew him to be the son of pious parents, a boy of good principle and good capacity. He had often seen at his father’s house, pasteboard horses, cows, cottages, and even pencil sketches, that he amused himself with, when once recovering from a severe illness. When the boy recovered he frequently brought into request his newly-discovered capacity, and improved very much in his rough sketching. He had no idea of prosecuting his ability any further. All this was not lost on the priest, who felt assured that he could command the necessary influence to enter Roderick in the academy of Heidelberg, and enable him to become the master of an honorable and lucrative art. He knew that capacity is more unfailing, and possesses more resources than wealth; he knew Roderick’s substantial worth and undoubted probity, and felt that he had neither right nor inclination to thwart his niece’s predilection.

It was during one of these flower-hunting excursions that Roderick and Ella first conceived the idea of weaving the bower on the Castle Mount. They were accustomed frequently to extend their rambling to the ruined castle, in the old garden of which a variety of flowers were still cultivated by the guardian of the place; and by the time they had clambered up to the terrace on their return, were fain to sit down and repose awhile. They soon began to feel a partiality for the place; and no wonder, for there was not so fine a view, even to childhood’s eyes, to be found in the whole country. Their childish hands there twined the bower whose strange demolition I, in after years, witnessed. There they spent many of their happiest hours; there they first plighted their troth; there they renewed it over and over again; and there poor Roderick first saw the—beginning of the end.

It were useless to attempt to say how proud the poor boy was of his betrothed, and of her accomplishments. The fact that he never felt a pang of jealousy during four long years, frequently under most trying circumstances, that his trust in his beloved never for a moment wavered till his heart was wrung, and his brain was crazed that eventful evening at the bower, loudly testifies to his ingenuousness, and the priest’s correct estimate of the man. A neighboring Curé, who had in former years been a fellow-student of Father Klaus in Italy, frequently rode over to spend half a day. On such occasions Ella was entertained with metaphysical disquisitions, which, unknown to her entertainers, her deep, psychological nature eagerly drank in, in draughts as great as her capacity would admit. To their theological discussions she was a silent, attentive listener; subjects which her uncle never upon any other occasion spoke of in her presence, were argued with an earnestness that made him forgetful of the indirect injury they might work upon her mind. She began to propound questions to herself, and to attempt the solution of them, of herself. She remembered many delicate cases of morality determined by learned heads; pondered over the principles upon which those decisions were based; constructed new cases for the application of similar principles; in short, became a blundering casuist before she knew it. A new light was dawning upon her mind; she saw, for the first time, that laws can be stretched to very tension, and not broken. She did not reflect that principle is firm as a rock, and lasting and unchanging as eternity itself—that there is no going and returning there. She knew not that he who ranges about to strain the utmost limits of law, has wandered far from the moral centre of gravity—principle. She knew not that we do not always stand guiltless in the forum of our own conscience, though no other living being dare censure us, even in his inmost mind. The world may judge a man for what he does and dares; he alone, for what he does not fear. Ella was precisely in that unfortunate state of mind, in which one knows just too much or too little; in which a certain degree of knowledge necessarily requires more to prevent its running astray. There is a degree of pride which renders one ridiculous, contemptible; a greater degree checks its manifestation—governs it. One is vanity; the other despises vanity. Such a relation did Ella’s science bear to true philosophy as vanity does to pride;—and she played with it. One must, one will destroy the other. Had her uncle known her infatuation, one word would have dispelled every shadow of it.

Oftentimes the college friends would turn their conversation to days long past, to reminiscences of their sojourn in Italy. The lore of classic and romantic associations of that wonderful country; the graphic illustrations of life, and scenes, and elegance, and delights, in that delicious clime, enchanted their young listener. Dissertations on the political changes there enacting; surmises of changes impending, necessarily drew forth a detail of social, historic and scenic minutiæ, that expanded her young mind to poetic conceptions; distance lent its enchantment to the view, and her rich fancy glowed with the beauty of its imaginings. A longing, secret and subtle at first, then craving and irrepressible, to taste the sweets of forbidden fruit, took possession of her. She was betrothed at that time; she knew that with Roderick she could not enjoy those pleasures; she ought and did know that this longing would breed discontent;—hence the subtle manner of its entering on possession of her heart. Long she repelled it; principle forbade it; her reasonings were very nice; and lax as she may have become speculatively, she nourished a high-minded honor that would have done credit to any child of Adam. Soon she thought it no harm to enjoy the victory she had, with so great an effort, gained over herself; frequently she did so. Then her sophistry came to the attack; she might have regrets in secret, she thought, and they might not be at all detrimental to her husband’s happiness; hers would be the only loss, the only pain, if pain there were;—and she let her longing take its way. Still, she loved her betrothed as much as ever, none the less on that account; it is true she became a shade more thoughtful, not quite so light-hearted as she was, but she did not notice any change. If her heart lost any of its feeling, her harp did not. She took it more rarely; her touch was bolder, and still more delicate; a beautiful originality undulated more in her modulations, and she played more without the words than she ever did before. Her spirit was more self-dependent. There was something of the wild energy of insidious despair.

About this time the younger Reisach was summoned from England to attend his father, who was very ill. Soon the good old count died, and his heir entered upon the title and estates, in a manner so becoming and consistent with filial affliction, that every one said the young count was quite equal to the old one. The rougher field sports he had been accustomed to in England were now abandoned, and he lent his mind to the more quiet and refined German tastes. Study, poetry, music, painting, sculpture, divided his attention; he aimed at conciliating and winning all, the little as well as the great, and no undue ostentation had place in the details of his establishment. Regular and attentive at church, he gained the confidence and esteem of pastor as well as flock. Refined and delicate in his speech, no virtuous peasant-girl shrunk from his attention whenever he thought proper to bestow it. To the reunions at the mansion the Curé had a standing invitation; and in return, the young nobleman strolled out upon many a welcome call at the parsonage. It would be harsh, it would be unjust, to say that Count Frederick commenced his attentions there with any deliberate design of wrong. Ella’s harp and voice were frequently brought into request for his passing entertainment, and he was not sparing of his eulogiums upon them. He soon began to experience deeper and more lasting sensations than the momentary pleasure she intended; no one could do otherwise. In his presence Ella conversed little, but that little was full of refinement, of thought and taste. He felt it difficult to smother his feelings or restrain them; and although he strictly maintained the distinction in their conditions, in his intercourse with her, and knew that a violent death must await all his more tender sentiments toward her, still he was unwilling to deprive himself of the pleasure he enjoyed in her presence. He was deeply in love with her, and he knew it; yet supposed that, like many other impressions he had experienced, it would soon pass away, that he might as well enjoy it whilst it lasted;—no one would ever be the wiser in the end.

It was before, and about this time, that Roderick and Ella were accustomed to spend their hours, and almost days together, at the bower. She had grown into womanhood, had entered into her twentieth year; and it was on her last birth-day, that she and Roderick had knelt before her uncle, to receive his blessing on their betrothal. Roderick had finished his course in the academy, and had already acquired his quota, both of fame and money, in painting. Ella sincerely loved him; and despite the admiration she felt for the young count, would have been supremely happy could she have been promised the realization of her imaginary enjoyments by his side. She loved him more when in his presence than when away. Absence threw no enchantment around him; it was in the sunshine of his tenderness and devotion that she felt the full glow of her affection for him; at other times she would feel the chilly mingling of her regrets. Had they been married then, they would have been very happy.

I said, Count Frederick deemed his love for Ella to be harmless, and that he felt no scruples in giving full play to it. It was only when, in his frequent rides, he caught a glimpse of the lovers enjoying their honest happiness under their own vine and fig-tree, as one might say, that the demon of envy, then of jealousy, took possession of him. There are few who can look unmoved on the unalloyed happiness of others, nor feel one pang of envy; that can see the appropriation by another of a secretly-coveted object, even an object one has no right or title to, or expectation of, and feel no sting of jealousy. Thus was it with Count Frederick: from the window of a mansion he frequently visited in Heidelberg, he could look right up to the bower. In the recess of that window he frequently sat; and with glass in hand, following with his eye every movement of the doomed pair, he conjured up a host of demons to torment him. He knew that her faith was given to another; he was aware and resolved that he could not marry her; yet, the long and constant dwelling of his thoughts upon her, the enlistment of his feelings and affections for her, seemed, in his disordered mind, to invest him with an indefinable title; he felt the outrage done to it, and casting full rein to both anger and passion, vowed to wreak his vengeance on what he thenceforward dreamed to be his mistress, and her lover.

Alone, and in secret, did he plot his plans to circumvent them. Lost now to every feeling of shame and honor, he repelled no scheme, however base, that presented itself; and though the better and more manly exercise of his faculties drooped and withered under his scorching passion, a deeper, deadlier cunning than he ever knew before, sweltered and forged unceasingly the most crafty implements for his hellish purpose. He would trust not an iota to the assistance of other hands, but assumed the whole burden of contriving and executing upon himself. Not a breath did he breathe of his infamous design to human ears. His demeanor in public possessed all the semblance of urbanity and good feeling that he once felt; but his interior Vulcan reposed not from his craft. Every piece of information that he could unsuspectingly acquire concerning either poor Roderick or Ella, he stored up and revolved in his aristocratic mind, digesting it with his moral venom, as a viper would revolve and masticate with poison its loath-some morsel. He learned from many sources, partially from herself, the particulars of Ella’s history, as far as was known; and contrasting several portions with certain circumstances that had fallen under his observation when in England, was astonished at the result of his machinations, which now doubled upon himself, to involve him too in their fatal entanglement. Thus far he had stood apart, aloof, as it were, upon a height above his contemplated victims. His baser passions had thrown aside the drapery of virtue and honor which once veiled the lovely woman from the gaze of rude thought, and he could look down upon her very graces as an object of his intended prey; but when the artful interlocking of his web and woof turned up to his astonished eyes, in gathered forms, the whole and real picture of his contemplated deed; when his study brought to light the astounding fact that Ella could claim close kindred with the proudest titles of the British peerage, his craven spirit of profligacy slunk away, for the time awed, but not quelled, by the air of reverence, and veneration that breathed upon it. At its return, elevated, softened, warmed, but not purified, by its admixture of romance, he felt his sternest anger giving way, his haughtiest pride tottering, his very soul melting into admiration and love; he reeled from his position aloof, and writhed a whole burnt offering among the other victims to his passion. His subtle ingenuity soon brought to the crucible the extraordinary change in his sentiments toward the unconscious girl, and the analysis did not dispel the new charm that enveloped her. He saw it was perfectly natural, and the only fruit of his discovery was a resolution to bring the charm to operate upon her own mind—it would open the avenue to a secret discontent with her present position, unfold a vast and snare-beset field to the vagaries of a romantic imagination, and bring her feelings to a sympathetic appreciation of the fellowship of caste that existed between her and himself.

Full of this dark resolve, Count Frederick went forth alone one afternoon. He had designedly employed the unsuspecting Roderick to restore some old paintings that had accumulated the dust of ages. They were in a studio in town. There Roderick had labored busily all the day, and when evening drew near he was still detained by some management of the count, in order to give his lordship the opportunity for his coveted interview with Ella. He had learned at what hour she would probably be at the appointed rendezvous, and timed his evening excursion accordingly. It was a beautiful afternoon in April. From the castle heights, the sun was seen slowly creeping down the skies of France, and the changing tints of the glittering clouds, were gorgeously reflected by the distant waters of the Rhine, and the intermediate mirrors of the Neckar. Villages, hamlets, cottages, spread over the plain, rolled their black smoke in heavy volumes against the green mountains, about whose feet the lights and shadows already had begun to sketch fantastic tableaux. How naturally did the words of the Mantuan poet’s pastoral seem to spring to Count Frederick’s lips, as he stood within a few paces of the bower, gazing abroad upon the scene, observed by the startled inmate, and feigning not to observe again. Ella understood perfectly well the words of the text, and as they were feelingly and eloquently poured forth, as though spontaneously, by the handsome youth, as he threw himself upon the turf, lost her surprise in the appropriate beauty of the poet’s effusion—

Hic tamen hac mecum poteris requiescere nocte,

Frondes super virides; sunt nobis mitia poma,

Castaneæque molles, et pressi copia lactis.

Et jam summa procul villarum culmina fumant,

Majoresque codunt altis de montibus umbrae.

The last two lines he rapturously repeated several times, then turning his eyes, as though perchance toward the bower, he hastily arose, and in a moment stood blandly before Ella, apologizing for his intrusion, and in the same breath requesting the favor of one of her pastoral songs. She challenged him for a repetition of the verses, and he uttered them in so off-hand, theatrical a way, that they both burst into a laugh. The ice was broken. Never before had he so far descended from his dignity in her presence. There and alone with him, she felt the charm of this novelty, and bandied words with him willingly, for she supposed that Roderick would soon come, and she thought it would be fine to pique his jealousy a little, only to reward it the better afterward with the sweetness of perfect tranquillity. He gradually drew forth from her own lips what little she knew of her father’s history and family, and artfully beguiled away the key to her enjoyments and her regrets. He had been intimate, very intimate, he told her, with a nobleman in England, whom he now knew must be her uncle. The identity of her father’s history, even to his fall in a duel, with that of a brother of Lord B.; the same name, even a perceptible resemblance of Ella to him, rendered his assurance doubly sure. Then followed many particulars which completely set Ella’s willing mind at rest in regard to the nobility of her parentage.

So far, all was well. As he anticipated, the disclosure was to her astounding and pleasing at the same time. The shadows of incredulity that for a moment hovered before the citadel of her happiness, flitted away before the march of pleasurable emotions. Her first feelings were those of gratitude, and in the liveliness of her satisfaction, as he poured into her ears the minuter details of her family history, she could have smiled almost any thing, looked almost any reward for him who bore her the welcome tidings. She divined the emotion that quivered on his lip, fathomed the eloquence that sparkled in his eye, suffusing his whole face with its light, and trembled, trembled like an aspen, with momentary terror: but, as his glowing speech expatiated on the time-honored and world-worshiped glory and privileges of the noblesse, the spirit of high-toned chivalry that begot, that chose, that ever ornamented the knightly order of Christendom, her terrors flew to the winds, and left her trembling frame a play-thing in the frenzied hands of wilder discord than her bosom had ever known. She no longer shunned his gaze; their eyes met again and again; a shadow, as of a dream, passed over her faculties; phantoms of law and duty and religion sprang up, to clamor for their rights; hastily she breathed an acquiescence, and then spurned them away as phantoms, as disturbers of the serenity of her soul. For the first time in all her life she felt the thrill of passion; the sorcerer beheld it, and closer and closer did he wind his web around them both, until, convulsed by the mighty battery within, he leaped from his seat, folded her resistless form in her arms, imprinted one passionate kiss upon her lips, and disappeared down the precipice.

When she recovered a little self-possession, her mind soon comprehended all; she felt and knew that passion had taken possession of her, and that love was gone; but never for a moment did she advert to any fault of her own. If conscience arose, she hastily repressed it, and despite what she inmostly felt, declared in her own mind that she could not see, measuring by laws of right and possession, wherein she had transgressed. Then stepped in pride. She transgressed! Oh! that one idea condemns the cause. She, who never had sinned, even in thought, against womanly decorum! yet, though her face burned with indignation at the thought, it was her own unerring conscience that accused, and against which she turned in so virtuous a scorn. Poor Ella! the great sin was already done. The loose rein she had given to her ideas, had permitted the birth, the growth, the manifestation of what she felt, consequently the encouragement of Count Frederick’s excited passion. What would strict principle have done? Trembled, and crushed the serpent in the egg. It had glided in and twined itself around her bosom so gently and unconsciously that she scarcely felt its presence; so brilliant and changing were its deadly eyes in their repose, so yielding its soft and graceful neck, that, trusting to its tameness, she nursed its strength and venom there. At once she felt a tightening of the coils. Who, but one willfully deceived, would not have felt death! She did not; she saw no death, but felt she could not cast her visitant aside, felt that she might have to struggle on and bear her burden triumphantly along. What harm if no positive evil came of it? It was her own burden; might she not bear it if she could? Thus she beguiled her better reason; she did not reflect that whosoever loveth danger shall perish in it.

The reaction from the state of excitement she had been in, was powerful, and she was just recovering from it, when Roderick came and found her at the bower, “pensive and melancholy,” as he termed it; and, since they could not enjoy the evening together, tenderly and affectionately led her home. This was the first night of Roderick’s grief and Ella’s unhappiness. One great effort would then have shaken off her enemy forever, and restored the serenity of her mind; but she did not see the necessity, the obligation; it could be done at any time. Her pillow was bedewed with her tears, but she attributed them to the agitation of her feelings. All night, that one moment of delirium was prolonged to hours in rapturous dreams. She awoke weary and pale. She was not responsible for her dreams, she reasoned; probably she was not; but I would not answer for the pleasure of them, for whenever her broken slumbers were dispelled by consciousness, through the night, she acknowledged the unlawfulness of dwelling upon that pleasure then, and she courted sleep as a means to enjoyment in irresponsibility. Her harp lay untouched all day. Her daylight reveries were but shadows of her midnight dreams; more she did not dare. To her uncle’s somewhat anxious inquiries she replied, that she had perspired so, all night;—it was true. The next evening was quite as charming as the preceding one. There was no reason why she should not take her accustomed stroll to the bower; it was her castle, as it were; she had built it, and it was her almost daily haunt; she saw no obligation to discontinue her visits there; if any one came, it would be his intrusion, not hers. Besides, if she did not meet Roderick there, he would be hurt, and probably suspect her of growing indifference. Step by step had she advanced so far in blinding herself, as to be deceived by such a transparency; in the days of her innocence it would have shocked her. Her very duty to her betrothed she converted into a pretext to betray him. Still, call her not traitress. Like one who begins to believe his oft-told lie to be the truth, a penalty for his deceit, she more than half trusted her shallow sophistry. No human power now, no stand of honor or pride, can save her now; she has let the enemy within the citadel to parley, and whilst she prates in whispered, cowering tones, of future peace or victory, he quietly possesses himself of every avenue and stronghold, and nothing less than power divine can lend the least effective aid. Will she ask it? Well would she wish to do so, but the mighty effort of instantaneous renunciation (the only condition for God’s help) is too great; and with an ungrounded, forlorn, despairing hope, she still thinks some impossibility may come to pass, to save her soul. She went earlier than usual, and long sat trembling in her accustomed seat. When at last Count Frederick appeared, she was not surprised; but an unaccountable dread seized her, and she would have fled, had he not gently detained her. She stopped; he saw all at a glance, he knew every thought that was agitating her mind; he understood her sudden impulse, that it was a last effort of expiring virtue, and he understood, too, that he possessed the power to overrule it. He knew it was an issue of life or death, and that either way, he held the hat in his hand. Neither spoke. He stood, holding the unresisting arm, gazed on her shrinking form, her imploring eyes, her lips parted in sudden terror, upon her every feature yielding in despair to the agony of a struggle for her very soul; the loud beating of her heart struck upon his ear with unearthly sound; he thought of the affrighted lamb before the altar, felt that in his hand gleamed the keen knife his beautiful victim shrank from; his eyes drank in her exceeding loveliness, his heart melted, and he burst into tears. He sat upon the bench, half turned from her, his elbow resting on the trellis, and his face buried in his handkerchief, overcome by the storm of his feelings. At this moment, the better nature in both, had a strong game. There is something fearful to behold when a strong man bends his head to tears. When a woman weeps, it is the drops from a fleeting cloud, an April shower, or, at times, the ceaseless pouring of a settled rain—a deluge; but there is the flash, and the storm, and the fitful blast that groans and yaws, and bursts through all control. No woman can pass on and not feel the cloak of her human sympathy draw close around her, as if to impel her to go forth and pour the unction of her tenderness upon the troubled heart. And there Ella stood beside him; one hand lay gently on his quivering shoulder, whilst the other pushed back the scattered curls from his noble brow. Oh, what a powerful language there is in the human heart, without words! In all this interview, since first they met, neither had spoken a word. It was a pantomime in real life; yet, what terrible converse they had held! Neither had ever, in all their lives, spoken to the other one word of love; and such a scene!

“I intended,” said he, at length, as he pressed her hand to his lips; “I intended to beg your forgiveness for my extreme rudeness on yesterday. I was overcome, beside myself; and now, when I would utter the words of my supplication, they stick in my throat. I am tossed like a leaf, before you; and here I sit trembling like a child, beneath your touch. I feel in my inmost heart the sweetness of your sympathy. I go, and but for the treasure of that sweetness my heart would wither in its desolation. I dare not speak to you of love, for your troth is another’s. At least, in mercy, vouchsafe to me one glimpse of the Elysium denied me!” He folded her once more to his heart; indistinctly she heard in spasmodic whispers: life—soul—dearest—and he was gone. The nobler nature was triumphant; and Ella, overcome by his generosity and her now unquenchable love, wept long and bitterly. She turned from side to side in her loneliness, gazed into the heavens, upon the wide landscape, until the tears blinded her. Then she bent her head upon the trellis where he had leaned; her dark hair hung in loose locks upon the branching vines, and she moaned in very bitterness.

That night she thought of Roderick, and for a moment compared him with Count Frederick. What a contrast! His very name, his only inheritance from his forefathers, was essentially plebeian, rustic. Ackerman! Roderick Ackerman, the husbandman! She had never thought of that before! She, the daughter of a noble house, could never bear that name! Her dreams were not those of pleasure only, for Roderick stood all night, a horrid phantom, between her impatient love and its unlawful object. Next morning she did not quiet her mind with the reflection, that she was not responsible for her dreams; and her midnight dreams, pleasure and displeasure, were her daylight reveries.

Roderick’s society still possessed a singular charm for her. In his presence she became more like her former self. She still loved him with a calm, settled love, which nothing on earth could ever destroy. When he turned his mournful gaze toward her, there was so much of tenderness and truth, so much of ill-concealed anxiety and trust, that tears of anguish and of pity would gather upon her eyelids, and she would turn her head, to brush them away unseen. There was no selfishness in her love for him; it was virtuous and sincere, unshaken; yet, in his absence her thoughts continually recurred to the all-absorbing passion that possessed her. Day after day would she go to the bower, but she found no pretext now, in duty to Roderick, for she always returned before it was time for him to be there, and he never knew she went. He said to me on the mount, when relating this portion of his history—“She never went to the bower any more.” Count Frederick did not come again. He secluded himself at home more closely than ever—and let us not trespass upon the sanctuary of a penitent heart. Poor Ella might have been seen day after day, as evening drew near, wandering alone over the hill, watching, with intense anxiety, the path which Count Frederick would take in case he should go out upon his evening walk. A mournful, restless spirit of solitude she seemed, ever wending her silent way among the evening shadows, never venturing upon the sun-lit green. At last her daring steps would turn toward the manor, and she would take its circuit, on her way to the bower. Once she passed, muffled and trembling, through the very lawn. O! could she have seen herself as others would have seen her, she would have sunk into the earth for very shame. How strange—that he who had been the ruthless tempter, in heart and mind the fell destroyer, should now, whilst retiring in virtuous seclusion, become the tempted! How strange, how passing strange—that she, poor victim, should become tempter, persecutor! Yet so it was: and such is man.—And such is woman—when she falls.

One day, from his chamber window he beheld her retreating form slowly disappearing in a little copse near the manor. The whole truth flashed like lightning on his mind: that he was not the only tempter; that not with him lay the damning guilt he had supposed; that he was sought; that she could be gained. The whirlwind of passion came again. The reflection that he had too unjustly accused himself, stifled every breath of remorse; and he went forth, in heart a demon, worse than ever. He soon gained her, and heaven-attesting vows were exchanged of never-dying love. All that was honorable and fair for man to do he promised. Their interviews thenceforward were frequent and clandestine; her health was failing in a perpetual struggle, and matters were drawing to a crisis. She never told her uncle what was done; she feared, she felt in her own heart, that it was not honest love. Count Frederick, I said, had promised all that was honorable for man to do; that promise he did not intend to keep. The more he thought over it, the more fully was he persuaded that she was not sanguine of its observance. After a lengthy consideration his plot was laid, and he appointed a time with Ella for an interview at the bower. It was Roderick’s eventful evening, the one he alluded to when he said: “I could not resist a moment’s visit to the bower, for, since pleasure there seemed henceforth to be forbidden fruit to me, I longed for a moment, even of its pain.” They were both punctual to the appointment. Count Frederick was paler than usual; she noticed his agitation, and he, to cover it, took out his Virgil and read her several beautiful passages. He turned to the Æneiad, and wrought upon her mind and her sympathies with the loves and sorrows, the struggles and the fall, of the queenly Dido. She caught the incendium, and as he repeated over and over, with increasing gusto, the more inflammatory passages, in the words of the poet, like Dido herself she sat “pendesque iterum narrantis ab ore.” At last, as he closed the book, he gazed intently on her, trembling with the very burden of his task. He took her hand; she smiled.

“Ella,” said he, “dost thou love me?”

She took the book, and marked a passage with her pencil. He read:

              “Est mollis flamma medullas,

Interea et tacitum vivit sub pectore vulnus.”

The glow of her features attested the truth. He continued:

“Wouldst thou be happy to wander the wide world over by my side, to revel in the gayeties of Paris, to stand amid the awful ruins of Athens and Palmyra, to tread the hallowed spots of Palestine, and bask in the sunny skies of Italy?”

“With thee and honor, anywhere.”

“Ella, thou hast a picture; let me see it? Who gave it thee?”

“My mother.”

“When?—dost thou remember?”

“Yes, when I was a tiny child. She gave it in my hands and said it was all I had from my dear father but his name.”

“Thou hast his name. Dost thou know, Ella, who this is?”

“I never knew.”

“I know. I have seen her: she is living yet, and bears but a slight resemblance now to this young face.”

“Tell me of her; is she my father’s sister?”

“No; but wouldst thou know indeed?”

“Tell me.”

“Listen then—thy father’s wife.”

She sat stupefied; her bosom heaved convulsively.

“Couldst thou marry Roderick, now?”

She started to her feet. “Fiend! I understand you,” she shouted. Her eyes flashed, her form dilated, her outstretched arm quivered with the strength of her indignation; whilst her melodious voice raised in tones of inspiration, rang through the evening stillness with the poet’s terrible imprecation:

“Sed mihi vel tellus optem prius ima dehiscat,

 Vel Pater Omnipotens adigat me fulmine ad umbras,

 Pallentes umbras Erebi, noctemque profundam”—

she turned away, and sinking upon one knee, raised her clasped hands and streaming eyes—

“Ante pudor quam te violem, aut-tua-jura re-solvam.”

And she fell lifeless upon the ground. A step was heard. The count launched himself down the precipice. Roderick came, saw, and flew off on the wings of the wind, with a crushed heart and raving brain.

Ella’s first act of returning consciousness was to recognize herself reclining in the arms of Count Frederick. The swaying to and fro, the heavy lurch, the crackling stones, the dashing tramp, soon brought home to her mind the terrible certainty that she had departed from Heidelberg forever. How far she was away, whither she was going she knew not: she only knew that she was lost beyond redemption. Her body and her mind were powerless, paralyzed in utter imbecility: she could not, would not will: but as the reality of the world and her existence in it stole on her awakening senses, every power of her soul rushed to the view of her prostration; her heart struggled in very anguish, her reason staggered from side to side in the mazes of a darksome labyrinth; night had gathered around, and heavy dews swept through the carriage windows; terrors, strange and indefinable, fell like a death chill on her sickened soul, and she clung with frenzied grasp to the form beside her. Words of love, of courage, of hope, breathed into her ears another life, and she abandoned her whole being to the power of its inspiration. Ere morning dawned they were far away, and the second nightfall beheld them in Cologne.

Before I proceed any further, let me make a little necessary explanation concerning Ella’s picture. What Count Frederick said concerning her “father’s wife,” he knew to be utterly false. The miniature was that of a lady Mr. Corbyn had been affianced to in England, and whom he forsook for another, more to his liking. As the engagement had become notorious, and he felt the extent of the injury he was indicting upon her and her family, he retired into as great obscurity as possible, on the continent, and married Katrina. Ere many years he was discovered in his retreat, and the arrival of the strangers in his village, his fall in a duel with a brother of his former betrothed, were consequent upon that discovery. Ella’s birth was honorable as birth could be. The mystery which hung about the picture had prepared her mind to become the easy dupe of a well-told lie.

Many days Ella lay consuming beneath the fire of a raging fever, whilst a sad and anxious watcher, night and day, moved ever silently about the darkened chamber. This was the most trying period of Count Frederick’s life. Ever and anon the low murmuring of troubled dreams would fall like heavy curses on his cowering heart; and as he would gently move aside the curtains and bend his ear to feel the parching breath, words fraught with the odor of youthful innocence would ascend. Now the light of childhood’s golden hours would beam softly on her mind, and smiles of love and tenderness and purity would gently play about her mouth, dimpling her beautiful features with holy pleasure as she would whisper: “Yes, dear mother, Ella knows, listen—‘God keep little Ella from all sin.’ ” Then there would be some uneasy motion, some momentary contortion, as from a sudden pang, and then a low, trembling sigh, scarce rising with its burden of despair. O, how he shook in very agony! Then all was still. Her degradation, though she was unconscious of its existence, seemed, like an unknown and unfelt medicinal application, to extend, by some inappreciable virtue of its own, its subtle influence unceasingly through the system. Soon, names most familiar in her joyous girlhood, brief snatches of song or hymn that none but ecstatic moods of happiness or devotion ever called forth from her stores of melody; even the name of Roderick, accompanied with a tender relaxation and softened whisper, rose up like threatening spectres in Count Frederick’s night of mental darkness. He gazed and gazed on her pallid loveliness, watched every quiver of her parted lips, and could have rejoiced in the life of their occasional smile or tranquillity; but, that the hidden, lightless eyes, and the ever “chill, changeless brow”—for it never changed in all her emotions—appalled with the coldness of some fearful death: and he turned away. He would have prayed, if he could, for that poor being, but his heart was void; it was his brain that ached, for he knew that all that melancholy ruins had fallen from a sublime structure by his fell utterance of a lie.

It behooves me now to hasten this lengthy history to a close. As soon as possible our wanderers hastened off to Paris, to restore their sunken spirits amid the pleasures and gayeties of the beau monde. There it was I saw them, as they took their evening airing along the Champs Elysées. They had been there several months, and poor Ella’s looks and manner both told the inefficiency of worldly pleasure, to lighten the heavy burden of a guilty soul. The gayety of France was like the smart of sparkling wine on an ulcerated sore, and away they wandered into distant lands. The still, death-like aspect of the Grecian shores seemed like the languor of cold sympathy with her own silent sorrow; and as the startling semblance rose up before her, and she viewed in every phase and feature that all that was elevating and life-giving was passed away, she shuddered at her own kindred desolation. She would venture upon the rocky cliffs and gaze into the troubled sea, where—as now in her own mind—the lights of Heaven were pictured in flitting and uncertain forms; she would look abroad upon the unspotted blue, where not a coming or departing sail broke the distinct horizon, and she would reflect how the powers of her soul were mouldered away, and brought no more back to her enjoyment the riches and the fruits of other climes, the luxuries from nature’s and religion’s overflowing bounty. Then she would wander upon the lonely strand, and the splashing of the journeyed waters, whose tempest roar was spent in low, last murmurs at her feet, reëchoed the wild moanings of a dying spirit. Oh! how she sat and cried. Had her tears been those of repentance and return, they would have hallowed for ever a spot that was only classic, and her groans would have lifted the vault of Heaven; but the bitter drops, wrung by degradation and despair, were swept away by the encroaching wavelets—and the sighs were borne afar by the winds, to swell that everlasting ROMOR of anguish that never reaches God.

In the Roman Colosseum, the blood-stained arena of the martyrs seemed to burn her very feet, and she looked not upon a stone, nor an herb, in that sanctuary of Christendom but returned a look of withering reproach, as if by express command of Heaven. There was no peace. Like Jonah, had she tried to flee from the wrath of God, and find ease and security in sin; and now that she found it not, she longed for death—but dared not court it—as the oblivion of all her being.

Again our fugitives sought the resources of Paris. Ella was fast failing in health, and both knew that she must soon die. She possessed no longer any gayety, and Count Frederick secretly rejoiced in her decline, as the only means of ridding himself of a burden now become almost insupportable. Still, her death would not have occurred without inflicting upon him one severe pang; for her intellect, increasing in beauty and brilliancy as the body faded, held him in a spell that seemed to involve his very life. A short time after their arrival in Paris, the revolution of February put all Europe in a commotion. It was a God-send to Count Frederick, for a field now opened to him for the employment of his faculties; something at last, if not repose, at least a breathing spell to ease him in his tired struggle with a sleepless, unflagging remorse. He plunged into the under-revolutionary current, heedless of whence it flowed or where it came to light. All manner of impure ultraïsm gathering in its way, formed the nuclei of innumerable vortices that eddied and whirled at every turn of his onward progress, hurling him along with strange fits of semi-delirium, until the following June, when the whole concentrated power bubbled in red volumes to the surface, and the streets of Paris ran with human blood. Count Frederick became a willing tool in crafty hands, and shrank not from offices of most imminent danger. All night and all day did he lend his wealth, his influence and his labor to the construction of barricades for the defense of the populace: he became a leading spirit, and on several occasions his sword was foremost in the fray. His attire, his repose, his ordinary food, all was forgotten. Once he stood tired and worn, within a new barricade not far from the barrière St. Martin; his hat and coat were thrown aside, his dress all torn and begrimed with sweat and dirt; in one hand he held a naked sword, whilst the other grasped the stock of a pistol that was still unmoved from his leathern belt. Upon this arm hung poor Ella, still clinging through toil and danger to him she could not but love. Her bonnet was thrown aside; a soiled cambric handkerchief tied beneath the chin, had kept in check her unbound hair, but it was now in places loose and disheveled; one dark lock swung around her neck, and as it reposed upon her bosom, the curled, purple extremity appeared in fearful contrast with the snowy field it lay upon. Woman to the last, she bore upon her person many a mark of blood, and many dying lips within the last few hours, had breathed a blessing upon the unknown and beautiful angel of mercy that bent above them. Upon a stove, that had been carried into the middle of the street, stood a popular demagogue, gesticulating wildly, and thundering anathemas against the provisional government, that were horrible for ears to listen to; whilst around him stood some hundreds of the armed and excited populace, venting, at almost every gesture of the frantic orator, vows of eternal vengeance on what they deemed the recreant soldiery. Some one had just arrived to announce that the military, in force, were marching upon them. The shadow of the hand of death seemed already to rest upon the multitude, and not an eye was there that did not dwell upon eternity. Soon the military, in serried ranks and with bristling bayonets, wheeled into view far down the street, and then commenced the steady advance upon the barricade. The orator grew wilder and wilder, and every heart in that vast multitude quivered in awful expectation. The street was cleared, not a soul moved upon the side-walks; and the measured tread of the soldiers, with now and then a groan or shriek from out some chamber, was all that broke the silence as they marched along. Soon the note of death sounded in the rear, then the noise of changing muskets, at the word of command—and immediately was heard from out the barricade, trembling in solemn melody, low sounds as of some unearthly dirge; and the words, “Mourir pour la patrie”—arose with many a mingled yell. With the gallop of the words—“c’est la mort la plus belle,” all rushed to action, and when the first great burst of the murderous fire was past, the last words of the death-song still rang o’er piles of bleeding men.

The attack on this barricade was long and bloody. At the second discharge, Count Frederick rolled from the mound of curb-stones upon which he had leaped to replace a fallen red-republican ensign, and was borne into a neighboring house; there all assistance ceased. As he lay bleeding upon the floor, in a state of almost insensibility, Ella knelt beside him, striving to staunch with her handkerchief, her dress, her hair, the exhaustless spring of blood that welled up from a bullet wound in his chest. Not a word escaped her lips, not a tear fell from her eye, but she bent all the faculties of her mind to the faithful accomplishment of her stupendous task. His breathing became weak and weaker; she heeded it not. The veil of eternity was settling upon him, and the dim vision of mortality was being illumined under its shadow; the heinousness of his damning crime shone out in perfect distinctness; but one reparation, he thought, and that a slight one, remained; but how could he ever summon courage to speak it there? She seemed to him, in truth, an angel, as he turned his glazing eyes toward her; she would not yield to despair. He made the sacrifice; collected all his strength of body and of mind, and told to the wretched girl the story of his deception. It fell upon her like a thunderbolt. For the first time she became aware of the stupendous depth of her fall. Her only stay, her only consolation, her only anchor of future hope, upon her troubled sea, had rested on the excuse of natal degradation: now that was taken away. She sunk upon the floor; but in a moment, with frantic energy she bounded to her feet, and seizing the flag-staff from the dying hand, rushed into the street. The combat still raged; leaping over the dead and dying, with a bound she reached the breast-work.

The French journals, in describing the assault upon, and the carrying of this barricade, illustrated the enthusiastic patriotism of the insurgents, with the story of a young and beautiful girl, who, in the hottest of the fight, leaped upon the ramparts, flag in hand, and waving it gallantly above her head, shouting—liberté—fell, pierced by a hundred bullets, outside the barricade. It was Ella Corbyn.





Midnight was brooding o’er the Arctic highlands

  Midnight, the dim, and faint, and strangely cold;

When on an iceberg, ’mid the icy islands,

  Sat the chill Northern Spirit, weird, and cold.

          Her floating tresses hung,

            Wailing unto the blast;

          Her vapory vestment swung

            As the wind hurried past:

And ever and anon she moaned, and sung,

  With tremulous voice, such as the tempest leaf

In piny woods, and then again she flung

Her slender fingers o’er a harp, and wept,

  And wailed unearthly music, as when grieves

And sings a fallen angel, then it slept

A moment in the rude arms of the blast—

The snowy-footed madly rushing past—

And then sprung up again, as when o’erleap

Rich showers of harmony Heaven’s rampart steep,

And, star-like, from on high

Far-trailing down the sky,

Strike mortals mad, or wild:

So the pale Boreal Child

Sang to the soul of Naught, that brooded o’er

  Lone semi-annual nights, and days as long,

An icy ocean, with an icy shore,

  And icy islands, sparsely thrown among

A yest of icy waves; and all was ice,

  By sempiternal Winter wrought

To many a quaint device.

And then again, when the cold North-wind kissed

Her pallid lips, up to the amethyst

Of the far heaven she raised her spirit eyes,

Then beat, and wept, while ever grim Surprise

Wondered that she should weep, and then she played

  A prelude to her harp, then sung, then paused,

While symphonies filled up the gaps she made,

  And Echo woke applause.

Wondrous the sadness of her floating strain!

  The icebergs thrilled unto their heart of hearts,

  And Ocean’s breast rose with convulsive starts;

While from her eyes the tearful-beaded rain

Froze into gems upon her vapory dress,

Embroidered loveliness.

O Loneliness, O Nothingness, O Death!

  O Dreariness around me, I must weep!

  Would that my very soul were tears to steep

The wind with, that, at every breath,

With weeping, I might spend my soul so fast

My agony’s last throb would soon be past.

O Desolation, wild, and gaunt, and grim!

  O hopeless absence of all glad and bright!

O horrid shapes fantastical, what hymn

  Of mine, alas! can tell such shapes aright

Would ye but strike me mad,

I should indeed be glad,

I now can pass the dark hours but in weeping;

  And could my soul but freeze,

  Like the breast of the seas,

How rapturous would be my silent sleeping.

      Thou cold and icy moon,

      Thou dost not pity me!

      Six long months hast thou seen

      My weary soul, each year,

      Since Earth began, nor wept.

      Away, thou’rt hateful now!

      Away, for I am mad!

      And Earth, detested orb,

      How long must thou exist?

      Each throb of thy vast pulse

      Strikes keenest agony

      Into this soul of mine.

      If thou hast loveliness,

      It ne’er was shown to me.

      Come, let us die together!

      Hurry thy steeds, O Time!

      Bear us into the dark

      Of that Eternity,

      Whose shadows are so deep

      We cannot pierce them yet.

      Ye icebergs, that have seen

      My wildest misery,

      Do ye know sympathy?

      Then melt ye down in tears,

      And in a sea of grief

      Flow round me with sweet sound!

      They feel not, know not, aught!

      My misery is full!

      I must unto my bower—

      My bower of chillest ice—

      Would that it were my tomb

      Ye smile on me in scorn,

      Ye that do see my grief!

      Then spreading out her wings,

      Toward the extremest North

      She took her liquid way.

      The moon withdrew, and wept;

      The stars died out with grief;

      The icebergs thrilled again

      Unto their icy hearts.

      All things were sad for her,

      Saddened by her wild song.





Art! what were mankind destitute of thee?

  Religion’s handmaid oft do we thee find,

  As to thy polished car seek’st thou to bind

True elegance with sweet utility—

Long, wide, extensive is thy magic sway,

  O’er matter all inanimate and mind,

  E’en savage man thou teachest to be kind,

  And charmest his rude soul with thy harmony;

Cross seas the ship by thy good guidance goes;

  Fields arable, rich gardens, sacred grove,

  Town, temple, feel the influence of thy love;

Thy sacred power the mind immortal knows,

Nor can thy empire, universal, end

Till Nature’s forces all in sweet subjection bend.


This is the title of a long and prominent article in Graham’s February number: the writer is but a wordy plagiarist. He has received many rebukes already for his cool appropriation of the ideas of others, but Aristabulus Bragg fashion, he still goes on, in the calmest, most approved style, perfectly unblushing. A year or eighteen months ago an article of his in Sartain’s Magazine was pointed out to us as containing some clever thoughts on a very original idea, “the Musical Trinity.” Oh, we exclaimed, this is not original, the whole idea is stolen from the German; then we turned to Goethe’s correspondence with a child, Bettina von Arnheim, and found several passages on the same subject in conversations with Beethoven and Schlosser. Some time after we read in Saroni’s Musical Times that the editor had also detected the plagiarism in this article, and pointed out another author, book and page; saying with great good-nature that he would not have noticed it, had Mr. Dwight only written his article as clearly and concisely as the original; “but to rob an author first and then murder him,” says the editor, “is more than we can bear.” The author alluded to by Mr. Saroni, is the German Marx, and he tells us that the fourth paragraph in Sartain’s article is an almost literal translation of a paragraph in Marx’s “Komposition-shlere,” second edition, p. 24.

We have waded through this last article of Mr. Dwight’s on Don Giovanni, partly from curiosity, partly for amusement. We wanted to see the extent to which he would go: and then it amused us to detect the little pilfered thoughts, trigged out in the Boston transcendental clothing until their parents would have scarcely recognized them.

It opens with quite a flourish, trying to decorate the story and hero as the German Hoffman did long ago, but though the whole of the first part is a spun-out translation of the German critic’s description, it is so mingled with his own crude, half-educated thoughts, as to require some little skill in separating Hoffman from Dwight. He has made an attempt to improve upon the German, and we can not say we admire the Boston imitation. Judge for yourself by the following comparison:


The true conception of Mozart’s Don Giovanni is that of a gentleman, to say the least, and more than that, a man of genius: a being naturally full of glorious passion, large sympathies and irrepressible energies, noble in mind, in person and in fortune; a large, imposing, generous, fascinating creature. He is such as we all are—“only more so,” to borrow an expressive vulgarism. He is a sort of ideal impersonation of two qualities or springs of character, raised as it were to the highest power projected into supernatural dimensions—which is only the poet’s and musician’s way of truly recognizing the element of infinity in every passion of the human soul, since not one ever finds its perfect satisfaction.


Nature had provided for Don Giovanni, one of her dearest children, all that could elevate a man above the crowd which is condemned to be, to do, and to suffer: she had lavished on him the gifts which bid the human nature approximate to the divine. She had destined him to shine, to conquer and to rule. She had animated with a splendid organization that vigorous and accomplished frame: had inspired that breast with a celestial spark: had given to him a soul of deep feeling, quick and penetrating intelligence.

We think Hoffman’s description of Don Giovanni a little exaggerated, but the Boston imitation is what may be called a “free translation,” very free. All that duality business—“that ideal impersonation of two qualities or springs of character,” is decidedly an attempt to amplify, if not to improve the German criticism, and is in the usual moral-defying style of the no-principle school of Harbinger and Phalanx writers. In olden times our grand-parents, when they saw any thing particularly broad or free in expression or action, were apt to say, with a proper shrug of the shoulders, that it was “very French.” At the present day, when we see any thing questionable in morals or opinions we exclaim, “transcendental, mock German, and, very Boston;” and thus we say of this attempt of Mr. Dwight’s to idealize the very sensual, commonplace libertine of the opera.

We will now give another comparison.


Excessive love of pleasure, helped by a rare magnetism of character, and provoked by the suppressive moralism of the times, have engendered in him a reckless, roving, unsatiable appetite, which intrigue excites and disappoints until the very passion in which so many souls are first taught the feeling of the infinite becomes a fiend in his breast, and drives him to a devilish love of power that exults over woman’s ruin, or rather, that does not mind how many hearts and homes fall victims to his unqualified assertion of the every where rejected and snubbed faith in Passion.


In truth, there is nothing on earth which more elevates a man in his own opinion than love, that love whose vast and conquering influence gives light to the heart, and gives it at once happiness and confusion. Can we be surprised if, when Don Juan hoped to appease by love the passions which rent his breast, that the devil spread a net for him? It was he who inspired Don Juan with the thought that by love and the society of woman we may accomplish on earth those celestial promises which we bear written in the deepest recesses of our hearts, that intense desire which from our earliest days brings us most closely to heaven.

The principal difference Mr. Dwight makes in his rendering of this passage of Hoffman’s is, that where the German, in a very old-fashioned manner, attributes Don Juan’s wickedness to the influence of the Spirit of Evil, Mr. Dwight, by some slight of hand, metamorphoses the Passion of Love into an evil demon, and then gives a fling, as he would express it, at the religious discipline of the times to which he applies the very lucid epithet, “suppressive moralism.” We wish we had some of that “suppressive moralism” at the present day to exercise a little wholesome discipline over the authors of this

Phalanx Socialist Literature.

After this piece of borrowing and altering from Hoffman, the writer talks a great deal about “the old theme and under-current of Opera—the Body and the Soul—the liberty of Passion in conflict with the Law intensely narrowed down by social custom from God’s great law of universal harmony,” and such like rubbish, and then informs us in a note, with his usual precision, by way of illustrating this “under-current” of “Body and Soul” in “Old Opera theme,” that, strange to say, the first Opera he reads of, and which was produced at Rome in 1600, bore the name of “Rappresentatione di Anima e di Corpo!

Now if this were so, it is puzzling to know what it would have to do with all his talk about “the under-current of Body and Soul” in Don Giovanni: but it is not true. The first Opera on record is Euridice, the libretto composed by the poet Rinuccini, the music by the composer Peri. It was presented, as he says, in 1600, but not at Rome—at Florence, on the occasion of the marriage of Mary di Medici with Henri Quatre of France.

In 1600, Emilio del Cavalieri, of Rome, brought out an Oratorio, which was sung in a church in that city, which bore the title Dell Anima e di Corpo;” and the invention of Recitative dates from these two compositions—the opera Euridice of Peri, and the Sacred Oratorio of Cavalieri. But it answered his purpose to imagine this the other way, and with his usual want of accuracy he applied it—or he was ignorant, and with true transcendental presumption, took it for granted no one knew any more than he did.

Such reviews as this we now write of would be scarcely worth noticing, if it were not for the fact, that they are accepted by the uninstructed, for real bona fide musical criticisms, founded on actual knowledge. One might have expected that Mr. Saroni’s rebuking exposure of his Musical Trinity Article, would have startled the author into something like modesty; and when one sees how reckless he is, it makes one wish that Mr. Saroni would carry his threat into execution, and publish those “certain articles” on Mozart’s Don Giovanni, which bear such a remarkable similarity to Mr. Dwight’s lectures.

M. Bombert says, in his “Life of Mozart,” when speaking of this Opera of Don Giovanni—

“He (Mozart) shines in the awful accompaniment to the reply of the statue—a composition perfectly free from all inflation or bombast—it is the style of Shakspeare in music.”

Now for Mr. Dwight’s patch-work—straightway he snatches up this idea of M. Bombert, and makes use of it thus:

“The splendid sinner’s end is rather melo-dramatic in the Opera, and yet there is a poetic and moral truth in it—and the spectre of the commendatore is a creation fully up to Shakspeare.”

This is literary murder as well as literary theft. Now any one who knows any thing of this Opera will see that the “creation of the commendatore” has nothing remarkable in it, but the Orchestral Accompaniment is one of the grandest things ever composed. Mozart cared very little for the stage part of the affair; and this is proved by the finest music in this Opera being given to the Orchestra. We have heard—we cannot give the authority—but we have read somewhere, that a contemporary critic said that Mozart had put his statue in the Orchestra, and left only the pedestal on the stage—and this is true.

Mr. Dwight gives such an exaggerated, spun-out account of this famous Opera, endeavoring at the same time to gloss over the gross, vulgar, immorality of the plot, with all that confused mysticism peculiar to this Harbinger and Phalanx style of composition, that we will sketch a short matter-of-fact outline of it. Mr. Dwight, with the usual insane transcendental desire to apply an epithet, and make a speech, says, in a short sentence, which he thinks very comprehensive, that it “is an old middle age Catholic story;” making a sort of defense for the shocking immoralities in it, by accusing, impliedly, the strict discipline of the church for the libertine hero’s licentiousness, to whom he applies another string of expletives. In the opening, Mr. Dwight calls him “a large, imposing, generous, fascinating creature.” Now he has him “an elegant, full-blooded, rich, accomplished, and seductive gallant.” A sort of “a love of a man” according to Mr. Dwight’s ideas.

The subject of the story of Don Giovanni was a favorite one in the 17th century—“the middle age Catholic times!” Mr. Dwight talks of, in his off-hand sentence characterizing the story, was a little earlier than that, we think, a trifle of two or three hundred years or so—but let that pass. French, Italian, and Spanish writers all used it. Moliere wrote a famous play on it, “Festin de Pierre,” and from Moliere’s play Da Ponte prepared his libretto.

The story is a decided failure; and a great deal of time, and paper, and manufactured sentiment have been wasted in endeavoring to excuse and even to discover hidden philosophy and a good moral in it. Mr. Dwight is not the first one at this piece of business. If the wish is to make operatic music elevate and refine the public taste, by contributing to the moral purity of our people, composers should not select immoral and wicked plots; and no matter how beautiful the music may be, no audience should tolerate such a degrading story as Don Giovanni. It is full of all sorts of unnatural and disgusting scenes. The opening is very fine, and leads one to expect something tragic and grand.

Don Giovanni, a wicked, reckless libertine, has entered at midnight the house of an old military officer, and is seen at the rising of the curtain rushing out of the door, followed by the beautiful daughter of the commander, who he had intended to add to the list of his victims. A beautiful, rapid duet ensues between this daughter, Donna Anna, and Don Giovanni, she endeavoring to discover the bold ravisher. During this, her old father comes out, sword in hand—a combat ensues—Don Giovanni kills the old officer, and escapes. Then follows a beautiful scena, one of the gems of the Opera, between Donna Anna and her lover, Ottavio. She expresses her grief in heart-rending notes, and with frantic earnestness calls on her lover to avenge the murder. All this promises well, and one would imagine from so grand a commencement, something magnificently tragic was surely to follow. But the whole of the middle part of the Opera is flat and insipid—we are speaking now only of the story—filled with disgusting scenes of Don Giovanni’s gallantries. With a hard and sensual heart, he betrays alike the high and the low—the lady and the maid; he stains the palace and pollutes the peasant’s cot with his wanton treachery and crimes. He goes to a village festival, and selects for another victim, a poor village girl, a bride—Zerlina. This character was one of Madam Malibran’s famous parts, as Donna Anna was of Sontag’s. Zerlina, though properly the second Donna’s character, occupies more room in the Opera than the first soprano, Donna Anna. The famous duet, “La ci darem la mano,” is sung by Don Giovanni and her; and her little coquetries with the libertine lord, and seductive coaxing scenes with her peasant bridegroom, occupy a large portion of the middle part of the Opera.

A Donna Elvira, a discarded wife or mistress it seems to matter little which—of Don Giovanni comes in also. A trying scene ensues between her and Leperello—the impudent, buffoon valet of Don Giovanni—the buffo character of the opera, during which, he tells her of his master’s conquests, while the poor Elvira has to stand mute, and listen to his long, comic piece; which—if she is not a better actress than is generally cast in a third-rate character—makes it very absurd in representation.

After the grand opening scene of the first Act, Donna Anna and her lover Ottavio dwindle down into insignificance. All their frantic declarations of revenge end in nothing, and they content themselves with following the licentious nobleman about in masquerade; once in a while picking him up in the streets, unmasking, and entertaining themselves in berating him. They sing a beautiful trio with Elvira, just before the banquet scene; which is about the only good and useful thing they do in the Opera. For it serves a double purpose—as an English critic suggests—besides pleasing the audience, it gives time to have the stage prepared for the banquet-scene.

Don Giovanni, after flirting with and seducing fine ladies and humble peasant maidens, at last meets with his punishment; but not at the hands of the injured fair ones, or at the more probable ones of the outraged lovers; that would be too reasonable for this most unnatural story, but the grave must yield up its dead, and the infernal regions disclose their horrible secrets. At midnight, again he enters upon the stage—the scene represents a square, containing a marble monument, erected by Donna Anna to the memory of her murdered father. Leporello is with him, frightened to death at the sight of the grave by moonlight, and he declares to his reckless master that the statue moves its head. The bold libertine scoffs at the valet’s cowardice, and by way of bravado, invites the marble statue to sup with him. To his amazement the Statue answers “Yes,” “Si,” and here is that beautiful passage in the music which M. Bombert considers the Shakspearian style in music—it is the Orchestral Accompaniment to the simple reply of the Statue. A little startled, Don Giovanni leaves the stage. But in the next scene he appears as abandoned as ever. What a capital transcendental critic he would have made. He is supping alone, and seems to eat with great goût. During his solitary banquet the Statue enters, according to the engagement. Don Giovanni can scarcely credit his senses; but, bold to the last, receives his remarkable guest with great ceremony. The Statue tells him he has come on a mission of warning, and that he has yet a chance for repentance. Don Giovanni scoffs at the offer, and overcoming his awe, takes the extended hand of the Statue. In an instant, he is struck with the death-pangs—the Statue disappears—and he dies in a vision of endless torments, which is generally represented on the stage by a display of fireworks, giving the vulgar idea of the infernal regions; a place made for the devil and his angels.

Now it is this shameless, coarse libertine that Mr. Dwight in his article, following in the wake of others, strives not only to excuse, but to idealize and elevate.

We have done with the story: let us return for a few moments to Mozart’s part of this Opera—the music. Off of the stage, in a salon or concert-room, the effect of this Opera is most beautiful; for on the stage the immoral, vulgar story, low buffoonery and farce-like appearance of many of the scenes, are sadly at variance with the elevated and almost religious tone of the music, and disgust even a hearty admirer, if he is candid enough to admit it.

Let us here take leave of this subject and of Mr. Dwight: begging of him in future, if he is not able to be original, to at least copy good models of style and morals, and not inflict upon the community his own exaggerated, loose-principled, Boston notions. Luckily, however, his style is so confused and mystified, that much of the injurious effect is lost. We have heard these Boston non-religionists talk, and we know with what goût they “defy the moral” of any matter, to use Mr. Dwight’s own words; then, how can one expect better principles, where such laxity of morals are avowed. The closing sentence in this Don Giovanni article is a pretty fair specimen of this anti-religious, moral-defying kind of literature; indeed, the whole article is—for “passion life,” “innate gospel of joy,” and such English run-mad expressions dance through the whole article, enlivened and varied, once in a while, with some of the fire-engine vernacular.

Shame! shame upon such literature! Mr. Dwight talks of the “divine good of the senses and the passions,” and longs for that “pure and perfect state,” when these grosser parts of our nature “shall be—not dreaded, not suppressed; but regulated, harmonized, made rythmical and safe, and more than ever lifesome and spontaneous, by Law as broad and as deep themselves.” A pretty state of affairs we should have in such a hereafter as these people long for. All this is entirely foreign to our old-fashioned notions of Heaven and a hereafter. It may be the Heaven of an Agapedome, or a Woman’s Rights Convention, but it is not the Heaven of a Christian. And they will find out, sooner or later, that there is a real hereafter—a solemn, and stern judging hereafter; and though they may imagine that their transcendental “Souls, with their capacity for joy and harmony, is of that godlike and asbestos quality,” as to defy punishment, punishment will come, and pretty effectual it will be, and they will see all this “spiritual asbestos quality”—why not gutta percha, just as well—of little account, when they are found with lamps untrimmed, and talents buried in the earth.

Mount Edgecumb.





The thirsty earth, with lips apart,

  Looked up where rolled an orb of flame

As though a prayer came from its heart

  For rain to come; and lo! it came.

The Indian corn, with silken plume,

  And flowers with tiny pitchers filled,

Send up their praise of sweet perfume,

  For silver drops the clouds distilled.


The modest grass is fresh and green—

  The fountain swells its song again;

An angel’s radiant wing is seen

  In every cloud that brings us rain.

There is a rainbow in the sky,

  It spans the arch where tempests trod;

God wrote it ere the world was dry—

  It is the Autograph of God.


Up where the heavy thunders rolled,

  Where clouds on fire were swept along,

The sun rides in a car of gold,

  And soaring larks dissolve in song.

The rills that gush from mountains rude,

  Flow trickling to the verdant base—

Just like the tears of gratitude

  That often steal adown the face.


Great King of peace, deign now to bless—

  The windows of the sky unbar;

Shower down the rain of righteousness,

  And wash away the stain of war;

Though we deserve the reeking rod,

  Smile from thy throne of light on high—

That we may read the name of God,

  In lines of beauty on the sky.





If I were a smile, a beautiful smile,

  I would play o’er the infant’s face,

And stamp such an heavenly impress there

That never a tinge of sorrow or care

  Should ever its beauty efface,

      To appear the while,

      If I were a smile, a beautiful smile.


If I were a sigh, a sorrowing sigh,

  In the breast of a maiden fair;

I would speed me on angel wings above,

And lie like a beautiful wounded dove

  At the feet of my Saviour there,

      Till he heard my cry,

      If I were a sigh, a sorrowing sigh.


If I were a tear, a bright, pearly tear,

  In the eye of a Christian mild;

I would flow at the sight of keen distress,

As the dew-drop falls on the earth to bless,

  To calm the heart from tumult wild

      Were my task so dear,

      If I were a tear, a bright, pearly tear.


But as I am neither a smile nor sigh,

  Nor even a tear pearly bright;

But an humble poet singing the while,

The world of its sorrows and to beguile,

  I’ll scatter my songs with delight

      To the passer-by,

Till smiles take the place of the tear and sigh.





“Erin-Go-Bragh,” the celebrated Irish song of an exiled patriot—Why it was written by a Scotchman, with an interesting account of Campbell the poet, and some account of Gen. A. McC——n, the Irish Patriot.

O, sad is my fate, said the heart-broken stranger:

  The wild deer and wolf to a covert can flee,

But I have no refuge from famine and danger,

  A home and a country remain not for me.


Ah! never again in the green shady bowers,

  Where my forefathers lived, shall I spend the sweet hours,

Or cover my harp with the wild woven flowers,

  And strike the sweet numbers of Erin-go-bragh.

See Campbell’s Poems.

In the year 1810, a native of Philadelphia resided in the city of Altona, and became intimately acquainted with Gen. McC——, who commanded the Irish patriots at the battle of Ballanahench.

The general was a real Irish gentleman, with a heart alive to every refined sympathy of human nature, and warmly attached to Americans and the American character. Never can it be forgotten by those who were so happy as to share his confidence, how his fine manly countenance would light up, as he listened to the answers his questions would draw forth, when inquiring into the private characters of any of our revolutionary sages or soldiers.

Often would the tears start into his eyes, when, at the social bowl, some unpublished anecdote would be elicited of the daring of Putnam, the Hannibal-like qualities of Greene and Marion, the persevering bravery of Rifle Morgan, or the daring of General Wayne in his battles with the savage foe.

His whole soul would appear to flash from his expressive eye, and he would burst forth with the exclamation: “Oh, Erin, oh my beloved country, from which, alas! I am banished, when will heroes such as these arise and burst the bands by which thou art enslaved?—Will a just God never hear thy prayers? Will the groans of enslaved millions, will the agonies of a brave and generous people never reach thy throne, and call down thy vengeance upon her persecutors? Excuse me,” he would say, “excuse the companion of the Emmets, the McNevens, and others, who were confined with me in Fort George, in Scotland, from whence I was transported hither—banished! What a word! banished from the home of my childhood—torn from the land where my forefathers dwelt!” On one occasion of this kind, when the most of the company had retired, in his own hospitable mansion, he invited his Philadelphia friend to remain and hear the sad story of his life.

He rose from the table, and going to a book-case, he produced a copy of Campbell’s poems, and turning to the beautiful song of Erin-go-bragh—“there,” said he, “is my history, I am the original Erin-go-bragh. My countrymen, I am told, often inquire how it happened that a Scotchman should write this national, this glowing account of the wrongs of my devoted countrymen. Listen to me, and I will truly tell you the whole story—that is, if I can tell it! If I can sufficiently compose myself, you shall hear it; and should you survive me you may publish it, that the mystery may be solved and the world may know how the heart of a Scotch poet was touched with the holy sympathy of our common nature, and has placed on record, in the most exalted and touching numbers, the feelings of an Irish exile. While confined in the fortress of Fort George I was, without any knowledge of what was to be my fate, conveyed to a seaport and put on board of an English frigate, to be banished I knew not whither!” (The name of the port of embarkation and of the vessel were given, but are not now remembered.) “On board of this vessel was Campbell, the Scotch poet, then about to make his pedestrian tour on the continent of Europe. It was not long before we became intimately acquainted, and as you may suppose my whole heart was filled with wo.

“During our passage to this place, we had many and very close conversations, pending which I poured into his attentive ear, in impassioned language, the sad—the overwhelming woes of my countrymen, and particularly my own hard fate.

“We were not very long in reaching our destination—we landed together at Altona, and what was my surprise to find my companion as destitute of money as myself. I had been hurried away without the knowledge of my friends, who had no intimation of my banishment, and coming from close confinement, was not overburdened with a wardrobe, much less with the necessary funds for decency, to say nothing of comfort.

“Campbell was as poor as myself, and in this condition we entered a very common inn, and were ushered into a room, not very well furnished, having nothing but an oaken table and a very few common chairs. We seated ourselves at opposite sides of the table, and gazed at each other with no enviable feelings, when, on examining our exchequer, we found the whole sum in the treasury amounted to no more than a crown. We called for a candle, for it was growing dark, and ordered, in consonance with our finances, a small bottle of rum. The light came, and you must believe me when I tell you it was a dip candle stuck in a black bottle. There was something so ludicrous in this, and in our general circumstances, that we both indulged in a hearty laugh, applying ourselves to the ‘Cruise Keen Lawn’ to keep up for a time the tone of our feelings.

“As our spirits were operated upon by the wretched liquor, which we drank more to drown the rising sigh than for any partiality for it, Campbell called for pen, ink, and paper. ‘Mr. McC.’ said he, ‘your story has deeply interested me, and a kind of notion has arisen that I should like to put it upon paper.’

“In a little time a miserable ink-horn was produced, and something which was called paper, but it was so stained, and otherwise disfigured, it seemed almost impossible, with the wretched pen that accompanied it, that legible characters could be traced upon it; and I could but indulge in my risible propensities, at the idea of any attempt to write with such materials.

“But the soul of the poet had been aroused, and he bade me again to refresh his memory with my tale, which I did by replying to such questions as he from time to time propounded to me. Every now and then he would pause, and pledge me in the tin cup with which we were furnished, for glasses there were none; when he would again commence to write, and before he had finished, so potent were the draughts in which we had indulged, that some of the last lines ran in any other direction than parallel to each other.

“At last he finished his labors, and the result of them was the song of Erin-go-bragh, the very song printed in his works, and which I now hand to you.

“This is a true history of that inimitable production, more full of feeling, in my opinion, than any thing he has ever written before or since.

“Read it to me,” said the general, “for if the king would withdraw the act which banished me, the object nearest my Irish heart, I could not read that song aloud!”

Such was the story told to the writer, as nearly as it can be remembered, after a lapse of thirty-eight years. There are yet living in this city several persons who will recognize it, and an appeal to them for the accuracy with which it is here told, would confirm it in every particular; its only defect being the absence of power in the writer to impart to his readers any thing of the enthusiasm with which General McC. related it—nor the heart-stirring emotion ever exhibited by him when it became, as it often did, the subject of conversation.

As the reader may feel desirous to know what was subsequently the fate of the real and original Erin-go-bragh, he may be told that his friends found out where he was, remitted him funds, that he embarked in a profitable pursuit, and ever after lived in comparative affluence.

The story of his marriage is of so romantic a nature, that as he is now no more, and there is therefore no impropriety in giving it publicity, the writer is tempted to narrate it, as he has often listened to it from the lips of the general, at his own hospitable board, in the presence of his wife.

“ ‘There she is,’ he would say, ‘she is my preserver!’ Campbell and myself continued in our lodgings, and with Saturday night came the bill of expenses, but alas! our means were exhausted.

“When the bill for the first week was presented to us, ‘Well,’ said the poet to me, ‘what do you propose to do, general?’ To which I replied, ‘Do!—what do I propose to do, did you ask me? I might put the same question to you—but no! let an Irishman alone for getting out of a scrape. I will call up the landlord, and tell him our story; adding, that I expect ere long my relatives will find out whither I have been sent, and it cannot be, but that in a short time funds will be sent to me.’ Suiting the action to the word, I rang the bell, the landlord appeared, and I gave him our story in a few words, for though a German, he was well acquainted with our language. ‘An Irish general,’ said the apparently incredulous Boniface, ‘and a Scotch poet!’ He left us with the exclamation, and after he had gone, I proposed a walk, to which my companion assenting, we strolled around the city of Altona, and returned to our lodgings, without having met with any occurrence worthy of remark. Being somewhat fatigued, and having no book, or other means of occupation, we retired to our humble chamber, which had in it two single beds, by no means luxurious.

“Another week of anxiety passed away, and no advices reached me. The poet and myself were in a considerable stew. Another bill was presented, and to our great surprise we found our host very lenient indeed. He made no remark when presenting it—simply asked me had I received my funds, and on expressing my mortification that my reply must be in the negative, he left me with a polite bow.

“ ‘The accommodations,’ said the poet, ‘are here none of the best, but our host is an honest fellow, we have inspired him with confidence, and he appears content to wait!’

“I know not how it was, but I felt a strange sensation come over me, a feeling that relief was at hand. So strongly was I impressed with this belief that I communicated it to my friend, who laughed out at what he called my Irish modest assurance.

“ ‘Relief,’ he said, ‘may come when your relations hear of you, but my word for it, that will not be soon. No, no, there is no relief, and I must leave you for my continental tour.’

“He however yielded to my solicitation to walk, which was always my resource, and as we left the house, I said to him, ‘Campbell, when we come back I shall hear something.’

“ ‘If you do,’ said he, ‘it may be in the shape of a dun for our unpaid bills.’

“ ‘You will see,’ I replied; when we sallied forth, and were gone perhaps an hour. On returning to our room, judge of the sensation I experienced when I discovered on the oaken table, a neat envelope directed, in a female hand, ‘To Gen. A. McC.’ With an eagerness much more easily conceived than described, I broke the seal—not a line of manuscript did it contain—but for a moment my heart leaped with joy, for I found within the envelope a Schleswig Holstein bank bill of twenty dollars! Although my surprise was without bounds—‘Did I not tell you,’ said I to my friend, ‘that relief was at hand?’

“Our treasury was now replenished, and we had a fruitful subject of conversation. Addressing himself to his attentive listener, ‘I wish,’ said the general, ‘you could have seen the stride with which I paced up and down that room.’ Never in my whole eventful life had I such commingled sensations. My pride was gratified, that I could now discharge our indebtedness to our host, while I suffered the deepest humiliation in the reflection, that I was considered an object of charity by some unknown person! My curiosity was at fault to determine who it could be, and I shall never forget Campbell’s looks as he exclaimed, ‘You have conquered here, if you could not in Ireland. But it is Cupid who has been your aid. The hand-writing, the neatness of the billet, and its diminutive proportions, all declare it to be a billet-doux. My word for it, your Irish complexion and figure have taken captive the heart of some fair lady!’ This idea greatly added to my embarrassment, but the pride of being enabled to discharge our indebtedness, overcame for the moment all my other sensations, and strutting up to the bell, I rang it with so much violence, that our landlord ran up in an instant, and demanded to know what was the matter? ‘Bring your bill,’ said I, ‘that I may at once discharge it.’ I thought this would be the most agreeable intelligence I could give him. What, then, was our joint surprise, when he replied, ‘That, gentlemen, is of no kind of importance; I pray of you give yourselves no uneasiness on that score—you can pay me at your convenience.’ Saying this, he departed, leaving my friend and myself more deeply involved in the mystery which had not only supplied us with money, but which had also placed us in such ample credit.

“ ‘You see,’ said the poet, ‘you are known, and Cupid has taken you under his special protection. Let us call for wine, and pledge him, and the sweet heart he has enlisted in your service, in a bottle of the very best the house affords. Would for her sake and our own it were nectar!’

“The wine was ordered, and it was long before it made its appearance, for it was a fluid unknown within the precincts of our habitation; but it came at last, and though none of the best, never was the choicest Burgundy drunk with greater gusto, or a toast given with a more hearty glee than inspired us till we finished the second bottle.

“Time now passed more pleasantly. The second Saturday brought another note, addressed in the same hand-writing, containing a second bank-note of the same amount. Finding our finances so much improved we took better lodgings, and indulged ourselves with more of the creature comforts, for the unknown benefactor found us out in our new abode, and continued the supply, which enabled us to do so.

“I think,” continued the general, “it was in the fourth week that I was returning to my lodgings alone, in the dusk of the evening, when one of the flag-stones of the pavement being somewhat raised above its fellows, caused me to strike it with my foot, and being thus thrown from my equilibrium, I fell against the porch of a dwelling, in which was seated a lady, who did not attract my attention until I heard a voice, a sweet voice, which inquired if I was hurt. A voice in my native tongue uttering sounds of sympathy would have been accompanied with a charm, come from whom it might; but imagine the ecstasy with which I was thrilled when I heard the sweet voice which addressed me, and knew it to be from the lips of a fair daughter of the Emerald Isle—in plain English, an Irish woman.

“ ‘I hope you are not hurt, general?’

“ ‘General!’ she knows me then, thought I.

“ ‘Come,’ said she, ‘and rest yourself in the porch.’

“I could no longer contain myself. I had been dining out with an acquaintance—for I had by this time made one or two acquaintances—and the generous wine I had imbibed had opened my heart, alive as it was, to any and every accent of kindness to an exile. I could contain myself no longer.

“Tell me,” said I, “by what blessed influence I have been thus brought to listen to the sweet sympathizing accents of a country-woman, and one who appears to know me: for if I mistake not, you addressed me by my title—the sad, sad title which calls up all my afflictions, and revives the sad fate of my companions in a strife which failed to benefit our beloved country, proved fatal to one of the best men, and sent me hither a wandering exile.”

“There,” said he, pointing to his wife, then present, “there sits the angel of mercy, who poured into my attentive ears—till they reached my inmost soul—accents attuned to the most holy of all earthly consolations: accents of sympathy for me, and the most noble and heroic sentiments, applauding the course of our dear native land.”

“Now,” said the lady, “I pray of you do not get into your heroics:” and addressing their guest, she continued—“Receive what he says with many allowances, for on this subject he is insane. I forgive him, for he has suffered much in the cause of that dear land from which we both derive our birth; and you who know him know that he never thinks or speaks of dear Erin and his exile—of a spot for which he is ready to shed the last drop of his blood—that his whole soul is not on fire. Of this he may talk to you; and if you will listen to him he will do so till to-morrow’s sun shall warm you with his meridian rays—but I forbid him to talk of me and of our union.”

“Forbid!” said the husband, “there is no such word in the vocabulary. I will tell this to our friend, for you know I love him. I will tell him how you courted me, and how you saved me, and made me what I am, your happy husband.”

To this the fond wife would reply, deprecating the continuance of his narrative, which, however, did not prevent him from doing ample justice to every incident which occurred; from the time of their first accidental meeting as here related, until Hymen had sealed a union which had made both husband and wife as happy as they could be under the circumstances of his banishment. This was an eternal source of chagrin and mortification to his heroic soul; and never could Ireland be named within his hearing, that the tear did not start in his eye.

The substance of his love affair was, that the lady of whom we have spoken was an Irish lady, who had come when a young woman with her parents to Altona, had married a young German, who did not long survive their union. She was left in very comfortable circumstances, and hearing from the keeper of the inn that a person was an inmate with him, calling himself an Irish general, who had been banished, and who had not heard from his friends, and was without funds, she had sent him the weekly supply which so much astonished the poet and the general. The innkeeper—knowing the lady to be an Irish woman—had gone to consult her as to the probability of the general’s story, and had been told to withhold nothing, and that she would be responsible. Often did she tell the writer that she sent the money without any expectation of ever seeing the recipient, who was represented to her as so fine-looking in person, that he could not be an impostor. She believed him to be a veritable Irishman in distress, and—that was enough—had she never seen him, he was a countryman of hers, and had a right to any thing she could do for him—happy to have been furnished with an object to call forth her patriotic feelings, to exercise them in his behalf was her greatest delight. Pure accident had given her a knowledge of who was the cause of calling them forth, and his heart was touched and hers responded to his love—they had been several years married when the writer became an inmate with them—their home was the abode of peace and contentment, and a hospitality that knew no limits.

It was enough that their guest was an American to call forth all their patriotic feelings: and many were there—besides the writer of this imperfect sketch of so noble a character—that can join with the writer in esteeming it a high honor, and a source of extreme gratification to have been permitted to know and to enjoy the society of the “Original Erin-go-bragh.”

His sentence of banishment was remitted many years after the period here spoken of; and he was permitted again to return to the home of his childhood, and the land of his forefathers, for which he had bled, and for the redemption of which he was ever ready to lay down his life—but it was not so ordered. He died in peace, and was buried in the tomb of his ancestors. General Anthony McCann was the veritable and original “Erin-go-bragh.”





I have been out this lovely eve,

  With Nature’s self to muse,

While pleasant thoughts fell gently on

  My heart like falling dews;

And every star and every flower

That gave their presence to the hour,

And every voice of melody,

Seemed laden with sweet thoughts of thee.


I mused upon thy deep, high soul

  Of intellect and grace:

I mused on all the loveliness

  Of thy fair form and face:

And thy bright smile unto my dreams

Came stealing like the glow that beams

From sky and star, in waves of light

Upon the far, dim shades of night.


With every tone of moonlight sound,

  With every breeze of balm,

With every fountain, lake and stream,

  So beautiful and calm,

With every cloud, with every star,

And every sound borne from afar,

Thy voice seemed mingling with the whole,

Of Music’s self the life and soul.


And as I gazed up to the sky,

  And on the earth below,

My thoughts went back a few brief months,

  ’Mid saddening scenes of wo:

When thou wert lost in rayless night,

A wanderer from the sense of sight,

When Nature’s self had ceased to cheer

Thy high heart with her beauty dear,


I mused on the long night of wo

  That thou wert doomed to share,

When not a hope was left to beam

  Upon thy dark despair:

I thought how sad it was to be

From earth and sky shut out like thee,

To pine beneath a cloud of gloom,

Hung o’er thee, like a raven’s plume.


But now thou art restored again,

  To former sense of sight,

And lookest back with fearful gaze

  On that remembered night:

And happy in thy mind’s high powers

Thou rangest Thought’s Elysian bowers,

And canst behold with joyous eyes,

The wide, green earth, and free blue skies.





In each division of the American Continent, nature seems to have carried on her operations with boundless magnificence, and upon a gigantic scale. Chateaubriand, reclining by his watch-fire on the banks of the Niagara, where the thunders of its cataract were only interrupted by the startling yell of the Iroquois, could yet feel, in the midst of tumult, the amazing silence and solitude of the North American forest. And the hardy mariner, whose bark has escaped the perils of the Southern sea, and is wafted along the western coast of Chili, looks with no less admiration upon the fertile plains gradually receding into the swell of the Andes, which literally lifts its smoking craters and towering eminences above the clouds, and upon its snow-capped and sunny summits, scarcely feels the undulations of the storms which gather and burst around its waist.

With the stars and stripes of the Union floating from the mast-head of our frigate, we were sailing along that part of the coast of Chili, where the waving line of the Andes rounds within a short distance of the Pacific, and were unusually solicitous, after the perils and privations of a tempestuous sea-voyage, to tread upon a soil on which nature, from her horn of abundance, has poured forth the choicest of her gifts.

Older sailors than ourselves had spoken of the generous hospitality of the Spanish colonists, and there were historical associations connected with this favored land, well calculated to render a visit agreeable. Who that has been nurtured in the lap of freedom, would not long to look upon the only race of native people on the western continent who had never been subdued, and who, to this day, tread the soil of their forefathers unvanquished and invincible?

The Araucanians, who inhabit the southern portion of this delightful country, like the Saxons of the European continent, are the only native race who have successfully repelled every invader, and who, happier than the Saxon, still rejoice in their unbridled freedom.

Neither Diego Almagro, with his brutal treachery, nor Valverde, with his unsparing cruelty, could ever subdue or intimidate a race of freemen whose liberties still survive the frequent convulsions by which they have been agitated. The flame of freedom among this gallant people, like the volcanoes of their native mountains, seems destined to burn on for ever unextinguished. But I proposed to speak of the Condor Hunt on the plains of Chili.

Every one has heard of the Condor or Great Vulture of the Andes, rivaling in natural history, the fabled feats of the Roc of Sinbad. Even the genius of Humboldt has failed to strip this giant bird of its time-honored renown, and his effort to reduce the Chilian Condor to the level of the Lammergyer of the Alps, is a signal failure.

Although he has divested this mountain-bird of all its fictitious attributes, and stripped a goodly portion of romantic narrative of its wildest imagery, yet the Condor still floats in the solitude of the higher heavens, the monarch of the feathered race. The favorite abiding-place of this formidable bird is along a chain of mountains in our southern continent, whose summits, lifted far above the clouds, are robed in snow, which a torrid sun may kiss but never melt. Above all animal life, and beyond the limit of even mountain vegetation, these birds delight to dwell, inhaling an air too highly attenuated to be endured by other than creatures peculiarly adapted to it. From the crown of these immense elevations they slowly and lazily unfold their sweeping pinions, and wheeling in wide and ascending circles, they soar upward into the dark blue vault of heaven, until their great bulk diminishes to the merest speck, or is entirely lost to the aching sight of the observer.

“All day thy wings have fanned,

 At that far height, the cold, thin atmosphere,

 Yet stoop not, weary, to the welcome land,

 Though the dark night is near.

 There is a Power whose care

 Teaches thy way along that pathless coast—

 The desert and illimitable air—

 Lone wandering—but not lost.

 Thou art gone—the abyss of heaven

 Hath swallowed up thy form.”

In those pure fields of ether, unvisited even by the thunder-cloud, regions which may be regarded as his own exclusive domain, the Condor delights to sail, and with piercing glance survey the surface of the earth, toward which he never stoops but at the call of hunger. Surely this power to waft and to sustain himself in the loftiest regions of the air—the ability to endure, uninjured, the exceeding cold attendant upon such remoteness from the earth, and to breathe with ease in an atmosphere of such extreme rarity—together with the keenness of sight that, from such vast heights can minutely scan the objects beneath, as well as the formidable powers of this bird, when the herds are scattered before him; were sufficiently admirable to entitle the Condor to our attention, and to give us promise of goodly sport in the approaching Condor or Lasso Hunt.

A large landed proprietor, a descendant of one of the early Spanish patentees, to whom we had been indebted for abundant supplies of fruit and provisions, as well as for numberless civilities, conveyed to us at length the welcome tidings that the Condor, numerous as the sands of the shore had stooped from his sublime domain, to the base of the mountain, and that the hunt would commence in the morning.

The sun had scarcely risen in the heavens, when our party of from twenty-five to thirty, sprang from the boats to the beach. The plain before us ran in a gently ascending slope to the base of the hill about one mile distant. The hunt was up—and the field in the distance was dotted with scampering herds of cattle and groups of horsemen, mingled in one dusty mêlée, the sight of which lent wings to our speed, as vaulting into the deep Spanish saddles, prepared by our worthy host, we sprang onward to the field of blood. Impelled by the cravings of resistless appetite, the Condor, regardless of danger, pressed forward to assail the herds of the plain; while the watchmen, having sounded the alarm, the numerous population turned out, as well to protect their cattle, as to hunt the mountain-bird—the Chilian’s manly pastime.

From the midst of a canopy of dust, spread wide over the plain, there came forth sounds of noisy conflict, resembling the heady current of a “foughten field;” and mountain and hill-side were shaken by the shouts of the hunters, the tramp of scampering horsemen, and the bellowing of enraged and affrighted cattle. The Condor, alone, rapid as the cassowary of the desert, pursued in silence his destined prey. As we rapidly approached, we perceived one of the herd bursting from the western extremity of the cloud of dust, lashing his bleeding side with his tail, and his blood-shotten eyes starting wildly from their sockets, while foaming at the mouth, he bellowed loudly with pain. With a wonderful unity of purpose, he alone was closely pursued by the whole flock of birds, who, disregarding the other animals, seemed to follow, as with a single will, this stricken one, who was at the same time cautiously avoided by his terrified companions. Like all gregarious birds, the Condor appeared to have a leader, who, rushing at their head, into the midst of the herd, pounced with his greedy beak upon this devoted animal, the fattest and the sleekest of the multitude, and tore a piece of flesh from his side. Attracted by the sight or the scent of blood, the whole flock, like a brood of harpies, joined in the mad pursuit. Swift of foot as the fleetest racer, they kept close to his side, ever and anon striking with unerring sagacity at his eyes.

Tell me not of the gladiators of martial Rome, or of the Tauridors of modern Seville—they were pastimes for children, compared with the thrilling excitement of the Condor Hunt. Away they fled, and away we hurried in the chase. A thousand horsemen were wheeling rapidly in pursuit—a thousand cattle, terrified and frantic, swept over the plain—and a thousand Condors mingled in the crowd—until, by the rapid movement, herd and Condor were again hidden from the view in clouds of dust. A loud shout soon after attracted us to the scene of conflict. Bursting forth once again from the cloud of dust into which he had vainly rushed, the devoted animal plunged madly forward, yet more closely followed by the whole field of vultures. Black with dust, and streaming with blood from a hundred wounds inflicted by the remorseless beaks of his pursuers, he still fled onward, but with diminished speed. As if looking to man for assistance in his extremity, he rushed through the midst of our cavalcade, and the Condor, regardless of our presence, hung upon his side, or followed in his foot-prints.

From the altered movement of the animal after he had passed us, with his head on high, plunging and blundering over the uneven ground, it was evident that his course was no longer directed by sight. His eyes were gone—they had been torn from their bleeding sockets!

Wearied and panting, his tongue hangs from his mouth, and every thirsty beak is upon it. Still onward he flies, hopeful of escape—and onward presses the Condor, secure of his prey. The animal now appeared to be dashing for the water, but his declining speed and unequal step rendered it doubtful whether he could reach it. He seemed suddenly to despair of doing so, for wheeling round with one last and desperate effort, he gathered himself up in the fullness of his remaining strength, and rushed into the midst of the herd, as if he sought by mingling in the living mass, to divert the attention of his pursuers. But the mark and the scent of blood was upon him, and on the track of blood the Condor is untiring and relentless. Beast and bird once again were lost to view beneath the curtain of dust which overspread the trembling plain. But, in a few moments, pursued by every bird, he broke from the midst of the herd, and made a few desperate plunges toward the water, and reeling onward, fell at length bleeding and exhausted, on the very margin of the sea!

“Sternitur exanimisque tremens procumbit humis bos.”

In an instant he was buried up among his pursuers, his flesh torn off, yet quivering, by hungry beaks, and his smoking entrails trailed upon the ground. In the distance, on the verge of the horizon, the last of the herd might still be discerned, flying upon the wings of the wind from the fate of their companion.

Our host gave the signal, and we hurried to the spot to rescue the carcass, with a view to visit upon the Condor vengeance for the mischief he had done, and the blood he had spilled. At our near approach they took reluctantly and lazily to wing, and wheeling in oblique circles, they were soon seen floating over the crest of the mountain, dark specks in the firmament. The hunters, prepared with stakes about seven feet in length, commenced driving them in the ground, a few inches apart, and in a circular form around the carcass, leaving a small space open. As soon as we retired from the spot, the birds descended upon the plain, and entering the inclosure, renewed their feast, and again took wing. In the course of a few hours, the huntsmen returned, and throwing into the pen an additional supply of food, drove down other stakes in the open space, leaving just sufficient room for the admission of the Condor.

The birds, more numerous than ever, returned to their filthy banquet.

Meanwhile, having refreshed our horses, and partaken of the hospitality of our worthy host, we once more took the field for vengeance on the gorged and lazy foe. As the wings of these birds have a sweep of seventeen feet, they are not readily unfurled, so that when the Condor has alighted on the plain, he is only enabled to rise by running over a space of fifteen or twenty rods, and gradually gathering wind to lift himself on high. While in the midst of their ravenous feast, a few of the hunters warily approached and closed the opening; and thus, unable to soar aloft from a spot so confined and crowded, the Condors were captive. But a Chilian scorns thus to slay a foe. Armed with a lasso, each of the natives sits upon his horse, eagerly awaiting the turning loose of half a dozen birds from the inclosure.

They are out—and away scamper the Condor, fleet as the winds of heaven—and away, in rapid pursuit, wheels the mounted Chilian, swinging around his head the noose of the unerring lasso, which, falling upon the neck of the bird, makes him captive. The line is played out, and away sweeps the powerful bird, and away the practiced horseman after him. Springing upward, the Condor now unfolds his wings and flutters in such width of circle as the rope will permit—and now shoots perpendicularly upward—and now falls headlong, and is trailed exhausted on the ground.

The lengthened shadows of evening had fallen along the plain before the sport was up, and the last Condor was captured. We returned to our ship, well pleased with the entertainment, and swinging into our hammocks sunk into deep slumber, for which the exercise of the day had prepared us—but our sleep was not too sound for refreshing visitations from friends far away,

“O’er the glad waters of the dark blue sea.”

From Naval Life, published by Chas. Scribner, N. Y.





Thou wert a worship in the ages olden,

  Thou bright-veiled image of divinity;

Crowned with such gleams, imperial and golden,

  As Phidias gave to Immortality!

A type exquisite of the pure Ideal,

  Forth shadowed in perfect loveliness—

Embodied and existent in the Real,

  A peerless shape to kneel before, and bless!


With the world’s childhood didst thou spring to being!

  A thing of light!—a felt divinity!

A stainless spirit, born of Love undying,

  Nurst in that Eden of an earlier day.

Thence wandering on the morn of thy awakening,

  Like a Dream-vision through the world didst go,

Filling its darkness with bright things, and making

  The wild waste blossom, and the desert glow.


Still o’er the Earth, thy shining foot-prints tarry,

  Upon the mountain-tops thy step yet strays;

Through the rich woods thy rainbow plume floats airy,

  And on the sea thy form of glory plays!

Thy purple pinions fan the brow of morning;

  Thy sun-bright splendors on the noonday rest,

Eve wears the silvery veil of thy adorning,

  And night by thee in queenly robes is drest.


Oh, Beautie! still doth thy bright spirit linger

  In the green vale where Jove was nurst of old:

Where the Babe Thunderer listened to the singer

  Of “many-fountained Ida,” as ’tis told!

Still hauntest thou the violet-crowned city—

  The Trojan Mountain, and the Cretan Hill?

Wanders thy soul yet, in the Syren’s ditty—

  Speaks forth thy heart from the Lost Glory still?


We have rare legends of thy marvelous presence—

  In Egypt’s Queen and bright Zenobia’s form;

In lovelorn Sappho thrilled thine airiest essence—

  In proud Aspasia’s intellectual charm!

Nor was thy soul (through Raphael’s pencil) wanting

  In Fornarina’s soft seraphic face!

And, thanks to Petrarch, Laura’s form is haunting

  Our hearts with dreams of rare and breathing grace.


Once more! thou art the well-beloved of Nature!

  Thine empire sweet, is o’er the grand old earth;

And well thy soft hand printeth on each feature

  The brightness of thine own Immortal birth!

Thou touchest with rich hues and scents the blossom;

  With emerald lines thou pencilest each leaf;

Pearlest with dew the lonely flower-bells bosom,

  And flingest thy glory o’er the golden sheaf.


Joy to thy presence, all-pervading spirit!

  Well may we worship at thy magic shrine;

There is no gift that mortals may inherit

  So favored and god-blest, and dear as thine.

And still to me, thy worshiper, oh, Beautie!

  Come as a guest divine—an angel-friend;

Give me to see thee, in each darker duty,

  And radiate my life-path to the end!


In the February number, we gave a short extract from Upham’s Manual of Peace, in relation to the cost of the Army and Navy of the United States. That article has brought out an officer of the Navy, with the following—in which we get abuse for facts, and sharp sentences for figures. We can stand a moderate amount of flaying without blubbering, and have no faith in the theory that a drop of ink will raise a blister, except upon persons exceedingly thin-skinned. But our correspondent, who takes a narrow view of both time and figures, appears to think the question a new one, and settled by his article, and both Upham and Graham demolished.

“Sir,—Freedom of speech, and freedom of the press, are among the best privileges guarantied by a republican form of government; but freedom of speech is not to be taken as a license to state for fact what is not true without possibility of contradiction. Nor is freedom of speech to be construed into a privilege of saying sharp or impertinent and impudent things with impunity. It has been said as a rule, ‘joke as much as you please, but never trespass on fact,’ which means, when you fall into an error, you are bound to correct it.

“With these notions fresh upon me, I venture to point out an erroneous statement in the first page of the February number of Graham, which is calculated to prejudice a large number of people against the Navy and Army of the country. Graham (Upham) states that the cost of maintaining the Army and Navy of the United States is equal to eighty per cent., that is, four-fifths of the entire revenue. This must strike every reflecting mind to be an expense so enormous as to render it desirable to be rid of both Army and Navy. But the statement is entirely erroneous, as a moment’s thought will show. If four-fifths of the revenue are absorbed in maintaining the Army and Navy, only one fifth is left to meet the expense of the ‘civil list,’ president and officers of the cabinet, foreign ministers and consuls, custom-house officers, light-houses, etc. etc.

“The total expenditure for the Navy and Marine Corps, for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1850, was$5,523,722 83
The expenditure for the Army about6,476,278 17
Total,$12,000,000 00
The revenue for the same period was$47,421,748 90

“So that in round numbers, the expense of the Army and Navy together, is about one-fourth, or twenty-five per cent. of the revenue instead of 80 per cent., as stated, which is an excess of at least 55 per cent.

“It should not be forgotten, however, that twenty-five per cent. of the whole revenue for military establishments is a large proportion; but without these establishments, it is possible we might soon be entirely without revenue, because our commerce, without a navy, would be open to the depredation of pirates of all nations, and might be crippled if not totally destroyed.

“The expense of keeping a dog may be considerable; but if that dog protects us from thieves and burglars, the money spent for his maintenance may be regarded as money well laid out.

“The expense of the military establishments is not their fault or sin; but the evil is to be attributed to the ignorance of mankind. When the whole world becomes educated and instructed, all wars will be conducted with pen and ink, and aid of arithmetic. Sensible men, while in their senses, never cut each other’s throats for differences of opinion; they argue the difference; and he who has most logic and good sense, is always willing to ‘do to others as he would others should do unto him.’

“Therefore, friend Graham (Upham) continue to teach your readers TRUTH, and they will acquire so strong a sense of justice, as to do away with any necessity for fighting among themselves or against others.”

Well, we will “continue to teach our readers truth,” and the advice points a moral. Navy officers are bad logicians!—but are a pretty good set of fellows so long as they are paid well for the fighting that may be done, in the next generation; and are allowed to say themselves, that “the expense of the military establishments is to be attributed to the ignorance of mankind,” without using any means to enlighten mankind upon the subject.

Since our correspondent finds fault with us, or Upham, about his facts and figures, we give him the following from a gentleman[3] who has paid some attention to the matter, and ask him to look the question in the face fairly, and answer the arguments and figures, and if he makes out but a partial case, we will publish his reply, however sharp and acrid.

I do not propose to dwell upon the immense cost of War itself. That will be present to the minds of all, in the mountainous accumulations of debt, piled like Ossa upon Pelion, with which Europe is pressed to the earth. According to the most recent tables to which I have had access, the public debt of the different European States, so far as it is known, amounts to the terrific sum of $6,387,000,000, all of this the growth of War! It is said that there are throughout these states, 17,900,000 paupers, or persons subsisting at the expense of the country, without contributing to its resources. If these millions of the public debt, forming only a part of what has been wasted in War, could be apportioned among these poor, it would give to each of them $375, a sum which would place all above want, and which is about equal to the average value of the property of each inhabitant of Massachusetts.

The public debt of Great Britain reached in 1839 to $4,265,000,000, the growth of War since 1688! This amount is nearly equal to the sum-total, according to the calculations of Humboldt, of all the treasures which have been reaped from the harvest of gold and silver in the mines of Spanish America, including Mexico and Peru, since the first discovery of our hemisphere by Christopher Columbus! It is much larger than the mass of all precious metals, which at this moment form the circulating medium of the world! It is sometimes rashly said by those who have given little attention to this subject, that all this expenditure was widely distributed, and therefore beneficial to the people; but this apology does not bear in mind that it was not bestowed in any productive industry, or on any useful object. The magnitude of this waste will appear by a contrast with other expenditures; the aggregate capital of all the joint stock companies in England, of which there was any known record in 1842, embracing canals, docks, bridges, insurance companies, banks, gas-lights, water, mines, railways, and other miscellaneous objects, was about $835,000,000; a sum which has been devoted to the welfare of the people, but how much less in amount than the War Debt! For the six years ending in 1836, the average payment for the interest on this debt was about $140,000,000 annually. If we add to this sum, $60,000,000 during this same period paid annually to the army, navy and ordnance, we shall have $200,000,000 as the annual tax of the English people, to pay for former wars and to prepare for new. During this same period there was an annual appropriation of only $20,000,000 for all the civil purposes of the Government. It thus appears that War absorbed ninety cents of every dollar that was pressed by heavy taxation from the English people, who almost seem to sweat blood! What fabulous monster, or chimera dire, ever raged with a maw so ravenous? The remaining ten cents sufficed to maintain the splendor of the throne, the administration of justice, and the diplomatic relations with foreign powers, in short, all the proper objects of a Christian State.[4]

Thus much for the general cost of War. Let us now look exclusively at the Preparations for War in time of peace. It is one of the miseries of War, that, even in peace, its evils continue to be felt by the world, beyond any other evils by which poor suffering Humanity is oppressed. If Bellona withdraws from the field, we only lose the sight of her flaming torches; the bay of her dogs is heard on the mountains, and civilized man thinks to find protection from their sudden fury, only by inclosing himself in the barbarous armor of battle. At this moment the Christian nations, worshiping a symbol of common brotherhood, live as in entrenched camps in which they keep armed watch, to prevent surprise from each other. Recognizing the custom of War as a proper Arbiter of Justice, they hold themselves perpetually ready for the bloody umpirage.

It is difficult, if not impossible, to arrive at any exact estimate of the cost of these preparations, ranging under four different heads; the Standing Army; the Navy; the Fortifications and Arsenals; and the Militia or irregular troops.

The number of soldiers now affecting to keep the peace of European Christendom, as a Standing Army, without counting the Navy, is upward of two millions. Some estimates place it as high as three millions. The army of Great Britain exceeds 300,000 men; that of France 350,000; that of Russia 730,000, and is reckoned by some as high as 1,000,000; that of Austria 275,000; that of Prussia 150,000. Taking the smaller number, suppose these two millions to require for their annual support an average sum of only $150 each, the result would be $300,000,000, for their sustenance alone; and reckoning one officer to ten soldiers, and allowing to each of the latter an English shilling a day, or $87 a year, for wages, and to the former an average salary of $500 a year, we should have for the pay of the whole no less than $256,000,000, or an appalling sum-total for both sustenance and pay of $556,000,000. If the same calculation be made, supposing the forces to amount to three millions, the sum-total will be $835,000,000! But to this enormous sum another still more enormous must be added on account of the loss sustained by the withdrawal of two millions of hardy, healthy men, in the bloom of life, from useful, productive labor. It is supposed that it costs an average sum of $500 to rear a soldier; and that the value of his labor, if devoted to useful objects, would be $150 a year. The Christian Powers, therefore, in setting apart two millions of men, as soldiers, sustain a loss of $1,000,000,000 on account of their training; and $300,000,000 annually, on account of their labor, in addition to the millions already mentioned as annually expended for sustenance and pay. So much for the cost of the standing army of European Christendom in time of Peace.

Glance now at the Navy of European Christendom. The Royal Navy of Great Britain consists at present of 557 ships of all classes; but deducting such as are used for convict ships, floating chapels, coal depots, the efficient navy consists of 88 sail of the line; 109 frigates; 190 small frigates, corvettes, brigs and cutters, including packets; 65 steamers of various sizes; 3 troop-ships and yachts; in all 455 ships. Of these there were in commission in 1839, 190 ships, carrying in all 4,202 guns. The number of hands employed was 34,465. The Navy of France, though not comparable in size with that of England, is of vast force. By royal ordinance of 1st January, 1837, it was fixed in time of peace at 40 ships of the line, 50 frigates, 40 steamers, and 190 smaller vessels; and the amount of crews in 1839, was 20,317. The Russian Navy consists of two large fleets in the Gulf of Finland and the Black Sea; but the exact amount of their force and their available resources has been a subject of dispute among naval men and politicians. Some idea of the size of the navy may be derived from the number of hands employed. The crews of the Baltic fleet amounted in 1837, to not less than 30,800 men; and those of the fleet in the Black Sea to 19,800, or altogether 50,600. The Austrian Navy consisted in 1837, of 8 ships of the line, 8 frigates, 4 sloops, 6 brigs, 7 schooners or galleys, and a number of smaller vessels; the number of men in its service in 1839, was 4,547. The Navy of Denmark consisted at the close of 1837, of 7 ships of the line, 7 frigates, 5 sloops, 6 brigs, 3 schooners, 5 cutters, 58 gun-boats, 6 gun-rafts, and 3 bomb-vessels, requiring about 6,500 men to man them. The Navy of Sweden and Norway consisted recently of 238 gun-boats, 11 ships of the line, 8 frigates, 4 corvettes, 6 brigs, with several smaller vessels. The Navy of Greece consists of 32 ships of war, carrying 190 guns, and 2,400 men. The Navy of Holland in 1839 consisted of 8 ships of the line, 21 frigates, 15 corvettes, 21 brigs, and 95 gun-boats. Of the immense cost of all these mighty Preparations for War, it is impossible to give any accurate idea. But we may lament that means, so gigantic, should be applied by European Christendom to the erection in time of Peace, of such superfluous wooden walls!

In the Fortifications and Arsenals of Europe, crowning every height, commanding every valley, and frowning over every plain and every sea, wealth beyond calculation has been sunk. Who can tell the immense sums that have been expended in hollowing out, for the purposes of War, the living rock of Gibraltar? Who can calculate the cost of all the Preparations at Woolwich, its 27,000 cannons, and its hundreds of thousands of small arms? France alone contains upward of one hundred and twenty fortified places. And it is supposed that the yet unfinished fortifications of Paris have cost upward of fifty millions of dollars!

The cost of the Militia or irregular troops, the Yeomanry of England, the National Guards of Paris, and the Landwehr and Landsturm of Prussia, must add other incalculable sums to these enormous amounts.

Turn now to the United States, separated by a broad ocean from immediate contact with the great powers of Christendom, bound by treaties of amity and commerce with all the nations of the earth; connected with all by the strong ties of mutual interest; and professing a devotion to the principles of Peace. Are the Treaties of Amity mere words? Are the relations of commerce and mutual interest mere things of a day? Are the professions of Peace vain? Else why not repose in quiet, unvexed by Preparations for War?

Enormous as are the expenses of this character in Europe, those in our own country are still greater in proportion to the other expenditures of the Federal Government.

It appears that the average annual expenditure of the Federal Government for the six years ending with 1840, exclusive of payments on account of debt, were $26,474,892. Of this sum the average appropriation each year for military and naval purposes amounted to $21,328,903, being eighty per cent. of the whole amount! Yes; of all the annual appropriations by the Federal Government, eighty cents in every dollar were applied in this irrational and unproductive manner. The remaining twenty cents sufficed to maintain the Government in all its branches, Executive, Legislative, and Judicial, the administration of justice, our relations with foreign nations, the post-office and all the light-houses, which—in happy useful contrast with any forts—shed their cheerful signals over the rough waves beating upon our long and indented coast, from the bay of Fundy to the mouth of the Mississippi. A table of the relative expenditure of nations, for military Preparations in time of Peace, exclusive of payments on account of the debts, presents results which will surprise the advocates of economy in our country. These are in proportion to the whole expenditure of Government:

In Austria, as 33 per cent.,

In France, as 38 per cent.,

In Prussia, as 44 per cent.,

In Great Britain, as 74 per cent.,

In the United States, as 80 per cent.![5]

To this magnificent waste by the Federal Government, may be added the still larger and equally superfluous expenses of the Militia throughout the country, placed recently by a candid and able writer, at $50,000,000 a year![6]

By a table[7] of the expenditures of the United States, exclusive of payments on account of the Public Debt, it appears, that, in the fifty-three years from the formation of our present Government, from 1789 down to 1843, $246,620,055 have been expended for civil purposes, comprehending the executive, the legislature, the judiciary, the post office, light-houses, and intercourse with foreign governments. During this same period $368,626,594 have been devoted to the military establishment, and $170,437,684 to the naval establishment; the two forming an aggregate of $538,964,278. Deducting from this sum the appropriations during three years of war, and we shall find that more than four hundred millions were absorbed by vain Preparations in time of peace for War. Add to this amount a moderate sum for the expenses of the Militia during the same period, which, as we have already seen, have been placed recently at $50,000,000 a year; for the past years we may take an average of $25,000,000; and we shall have the enormous sum of $1,335,000,000 to be added to the $400,000,000; the whole amounting to seventeen hundred and thirty-five millions of dollars, a sum beyond the conception of human faculties, sunk under the sanction of the Government of the United States in mere peaceful Preparations for War; more than seven times as much as was dedicated by the Government, during the same period, to all other purposes whatsoever!

From this serried array of figures the mind instinctively retreats. If we examine them from a nearer point of view, and, selecting some particular part, compare it with the figures representing other interests in the community, they will present a front still more dread. Let us attempt the comparison.

Within a short distance of this city (Boston) stands an institution of learning, which was one of the earliest cares of the early forefathers of the country, the conscientious Puritans. Favored child of an age of trial and struggle, carefully nursed through a period of hardship and anxiety, endowed at that time by the oblations of men like Harvard, sustained from its first foundation by the paternal arm of the Commonwealth, by a constant succession of munificent bequests and by the prayers of all good men, the University of Cambridge now invites our homage as the most ancient, the most interesting, and the most important seat of learning in the land; possessing the oldest and most valuable library, one of the largest museums of mineralogy and natural history—a School of Law, which annually receives into its bosom more than one hundred and fifty sons from all parts of the Union, where they listen to instruction from professors whose names have become among the most valuable possessions of the land—a School of Divinity, the nurse of true learning and piety—one of the largest and most flourishing Schools of Medicine in the country—besides these, a general body of teachers, twenty-seven in number, many of whose names help to keep the name of the country respectable in every part of the globe, where science, learning, and taste are cherished—the whole presided over at this moment by a gentleman, early distinguished in public life by his unconquerable energies and his masculine eloquence, at a later period, by the unsurpassed ability with which he administered the affairs of our city, and now in a green old age, full of years and honor, preparing to lay down his present high trust.[8] Such is Harvard University; and as one of the humblest of her children, happy in the recollection of a youth nurtured in her classic retreats, I cannot allude to her without an expression of filial affection and respect.

It appears from the last Report of the Treasurer, that the whole available property of the University, the various accumulations of more than two centuries of generosity, amounts to $703,175.

Change the scene, and cast your eyes upon another object. There now swings idly at her moorings, in this harbor, a ship of the line, the Ohio, carrying ninety guns, finished as late as 1836 for $547,888; repaired only two years after, in 1838, for $223,012; with an armament which has cost $53,945; making an amount of $834,845,[9] as the actual cost at this moment of that single ship; more than $100,000 beyond all the available accumulations of the richest and most ancient seat of learning in the land! Choose ye, my fellow-citizens of a Christian state, between the two caskets—that wherein is the loveliness of knowledge and truth, or that which contains the carrion death.

I refer thus particularly to the Ohio, because she happens to be in our waters. But in so doing I do not take the strongest case afforded by our Navy. Other ships have absorbed still larger sums. The expense of the Delaware in 1842, had been one million and fifty-one thousand dollars.

Pursue the comparison still further. The expenditures of the University during the last year, for the general purposes of the College, the instruction of the Under-graduates, and for the Schools of Law and Divinity, amount to $46,949. The cost of the Ohio for one year in service, in salaries, wages, and provisions, is $220,000; being $175,000 more than the annual expenditures of the University; more than four times as much. In other words, for the annual sum which is lavished on one ship of the line, four institutions, like Harvard University, might be sustained throughout the country!

Still further let us pursue the comparison. The pay of the Captain of a ship like the Ohio, is $4,500 when in service; $3,500, when on leave of absence, or off duty. The salary of the President of the Harvard University is $2,205; without leave of absence, and never being off duty!

If the large endowments of Harvard University are dwarfed by a comparison with the expense of a single ship of the line, how much more must it be so with those of other institutions of learning and beneficence, less favored by the bounty of many generations. The average cost of a sloop of war is $315,000; more, probably, than all the endowments of those twin stars of learning in the Western part of Massachusetts, the Colleges at Williamstown and Amherst, and of that single star in the East, the guide to many ingenuous youth, the Seminary at Andover. The yearly cost of a sloop of war in service is above $50,000; more than the annual expenditures of these three institutions combined.

I might press the comparison with other institutions of Beneficence, with the annual expenditures for the Blind—that noble and successful charity, which has shed true lustre upon our Commonwealth—amounting to $12,000; and the annual expenditures for the Insane of the Commonwealth, another charity dear to humanity, amounting to $27,844.

Take all the Institutions of Learning and Beneficence, the precious jewels of the Commonwealth, the schools, colleges, hospitals and asylums, and the sums, by which they have been purchased and preserved, are trivial and beggarly, compared with the treasures squandered within the borders of Massachusetts, in vain preparations for War. There is the Navy Yard at Charleston, with its stores on hand, all costing $4,741,000; the Fortifications in the harbors of Massachusetts, in which incalculable sums have been already sunk, and in which it is now proposed to sink $3,853,000 more;[10] and besides the Arsenal at Springfield, containing in 1842, 175,118 muskets, valued at $2,999,998,[11] and which is fed by an annual appropriation of about $200,000; but whose highest value will ever be, in the judgment of all lovers of truth, that it inspired a poem, which in its influence shall be mightier than a battle, and shall endure when arsenals and fortifications have crumbled to the earth. Some of the verses of this Psalm of Peace may happily relieve the detail of statistics, while they blend with my argument.

Were half the power that fills the world with terror,

  Were half the wealth, bestowed on camp and courts,

Given to redeem the human mind from error,

  There were no need of arsenals and forts.


The warrior’s name would be a name abhorred!

  And every nation that should lift again

Its hand against its brother, on its forehead

  Would wear for evermore the curse of Cain!

Look now for one moment at a high and peculiar interest of the nation, the administration of justice. Perhaps no part of our system is regarded, by the enlightened sense of the country, with more pride and confidence. To this, indeed, all the other concerns of Government, all its complications of machinery are in a manner subordinate, since it is for the sake of justice that men come together in states and establish laws. What part of the Government can compare in importance, with the Federal Judiciary, that great balance-wheel of the Constitution, controlling the relations of the States to each other, the legislation of Congress and of the States, besides private interests to an incalculable amount? Nor can the citizen, who discerns the True Glory of his country, fail to recognize in the judicial labors of Marshall, now departed, and in the immortal judgments of Story, who is still spared to us—cerus in cœlum redeat—a higher claim to admiration and gratitude than can be found in any triumph of battle. The expenses of the administration of justice throughout the United States, under the Federal Government, in 1842—embracing the salaries of the judges, the cost of juries, court-houses, and all officers thereof, in short, all the outlay by which justice, according to the requirements of Magna Charta, is carried to every man’s door—amounted to $560,990, a larger sum than is usually appropriated for this purpose, but how insignificant compared with the cormorant demands of the Army and Navy!

Let me allude to one more curiosity of waste. It appears, by a calculation founded on the expenses of the Navy, that the average cost of each gun, carried over the ocean, for one year, amounts to about fifteen thousand dollars; a sum sufficient to sustain ten or even twenty professors of Colleges, and equal to the salaries of all the Judges of the Supreme Court of Massachusetts and the Governor combined!

Such are a few brief illustrations of the tax which the nations constituting the great Federation of civilization, and particularly our own country, impose on the people in time of profound peace, for no permanent, productive work, for no institution of learning, for no gentle charity, for no purpose of good. As we wearily climb, in this survey, from expenditure to expenditure, from waste to waste, we seem to pass beyond the region of ordinary calculation; Alps on Alps arise, on whose crowning heights of everlasting ice, far above the habitations of man, where no green thing lives, where no creature draws its breath, we behold the cold, sharp, flashing glacier of War.

In the contemplation of this spectacle the soul swells with alternate despair and hope; with despair, at the thought of such wealth, capable of rendering such service to Humanity, not merely wasted but given to perpetuate Hate; with hope, as the blessed vision arises of the devotion of all these incalculable means to the purposes of Peace. The whole world labors at this moment with poverty and distress; and the painful question occurs to every observer, in Europe more than here at home—what shall become of the poor—the increasing Standing Army of the Poor. Could the humble voice that now addresses you, penetrate those distant counsels, or counsels nearer home, it would say, disband your Standing Armies of soldiers, apply your Navies to purposes of peaceful and enriching commerce, abandon your Fortifications and Arsenals, or dedicate them to works of Beneficence, as the statue of Jupiter Capitolinus was changed to the image of a Christian saint; in fine, utterly forsake the present incongruous system of armed Peace.

That I may not seem to press to this conclusion with too much haste, at least as regards our own country, I shall consider briefly, as becomes the occasion, the asserted usefulness of the national armaments which it is proposed to abandon, and shall next expose the outrageous fallacy—at least in the present age, and among the Christian Nations, of the maxim by which alone they are vindicated, that in time of Peace we must prepare for War.

What is the use of the Standing Army of the United States? It has been a principle of freedom, during many generations, to avoid a standing army; and one of the complaints in the Declaration of Independence was, that George III. had quartered large bodies of troops in the colonies. For the first years after the adoption of the Federal Constitution—during our weakness, before our power was assured, before our name had become respected in the family of nations, under the administration of Washington—a small sum was deemed ample for the military establishment of the United States. It was only when the country, at a later day, had been touched by martial insanity, that, in unworthy imitation of monarchical states, it abandoned the true economy of a Republic, and lavished the means which it begrudged to the purposes of Peace, in vain preparation for War. It may now be said of our army, as Dunning said of the influence of the crown, it has increased, is increasing, and ought to be diminished. At this moment there are, in the country, more than fifty-five military posts. It would be difficult to assign a reasonable apology for any of these—unless, perhaps, on some distant Indian frontier. Of what use is the detachment of the second regiment of Artillery in the quiet town of New London in Connecticut? Of what use is the detachment of the first regiment of Artillery in that pleasant resort of fashion, Newport? By their exhilarating music and showy parade they may serve to amuse an idle hour, but it is doubtful if emotions of a different character will not be aroused in generous bosoms. Surely, he must have lost something of his sensibility to the true dignity of human nature, who, without regret and mortification, can observe the discipline, the drill, the unprofitable marching and counter-marching—the putting guns to the shoulder and then dropping them to the earth—which fill the lives of the poor soldiers, and prepare them to become the rude, inanimate parts of that machine, to which an army has been likened by the great living master of the Art of War. And this sensibility must be more offended by the spectacle of a chosen body of ingenuous youth, under the auspices of the Government, amidst the bewitching scenery of West Point, painfully trained to these same fantastic and humiliating exercises—at a cost to the country since the establishment of this Academy, of upwards of four millions of dollars.

In Europe, Standing Armies are supposed to be needed to sustain the power of Governments; but this excuse cannot prevail here. The monarchs of the Old World, like the chiefs of the ancient German tribes, are upborne by the shields of the soldiery. Happily with us the Government springs from the hearts of the people, and needs no janizaries for its support.

But I hear the voice of some defender of this abuse, some upholder of this “rotten borough” of our Constitution, crying, the Army is needed for the defense of the country! As well might you say that the shadow is needed for the defense of the body; for what is the army of the United States but the feeble shadow of the power of the American people? In placing the army on its present footing, so small in numbers compared with the forces of the great European States, our Government has tacitly admitted its superfluousness for defense. It only remains to declare distinctly, that the country will repose in the consciousness of right, without the wanton excess of supporting soldiers, lazy consumers of the fruits of the earth, who might do the State good service in the various departments of useful industry.

What is the use of the Navy of the United States? The annual expense of our Navy, during recent years, has been upward of six millions of dollars. For what purpose is this paid? Not for the apprehension of pirates; for frigates and ships of the line are of too great bulk to be of service for this purpose. Not for the suppression of the Slave Trade; for under the stipulations with Great Britain, we employ only eighty guns in this holy alliance. Not to protect our coasts; for all agree that our few ships would form an unavailing defense against any serious attack. Not for these purposes, you will admit, but for the protection of our Navigation. This is not the occasion for minute calculations. Suffice it to say, that an intelligent merchant, who has been extensively engaged in commerce for the last twenty years, and who speaks, therefore, with the authority of knowledge, has demonstrated in a tract of perfect clearness, that the annual profits of the whole mercantile marine of the country do not equal the annual expenditure of our Navy. Admitting the profit of a merchant ship to be four thousand dollars a year, which is a large allowance, it will take the earnings of one hundred ships to build and employ for one year a single sloop of War—one hundred and fifty ships to build and employ a frigate, and nearly three hundred ships to build and employ a ship of the line. Thus more than five hundred ships must do a profitable business, in order to earn a sufficient sum to sustain this little fleet. Still further, taking a received estimate of the value of the mercantile marine of the United States at forty millions of dollars, we find that it is only a little more than six times the annual cost of the navy; so that this interest is protected at a charge of more than fifteen per cent. of its whole value! Protection at such price is more ruinous than one of Pyrrhus’s victories!

Orations and Speeches by Charles Sumner, vol. I, page 71.

I have relied here and in subsequent pages upon McCulloch’s Commercial Dictionary; The Edinburgh Geography, founded on the works of Malte Brun and Balbi; and the calculations of Mr. Jay in Peace and War, p. 16, and in his Address before the Peace Society, pp. 28, 29.

I have verified these results by the expenditures of these different nations, but I do little more than follow Mr. Jay, who has illustrated this important point with his accustomed accuracy.—Address, p. 30.

Jay’s Peace and War, p. 13.

American Almanac for 1845, p. 143.

Hon. Josiah Quincy.

Document No. 132, House of Representatives, 3rd session, 27th Congress.

Document; Report of Secretary of War; No. 2. Senate, 27th Congress, 2nd session; where it is proposed to invest in a general system of land defenses $51,677,929.

Exec. Documents of 1842-43, Vol. I. No. 3.



He brought these violets yester eve,

  While I was with the dead,

And when I hither came to grieve,

  To me they meekly said—


“Let not thy gentle heart-founts flow

  For her who is at rest,

But joy and sing for all who go

  To sit among the Blest.


“Weep for thyself, and not for her,

  Child of melodious Grief!

And pray thy angels, hovering near,

  To make Life’s journey brief.


“For now we hear thy spirit beat

  With bleeding plumes its grate,

And treading with impatient feet,

  Like one that could not wait.


“Like one who, pale ’mid dungeon gloom,

  Paces his scanty floor,

Awaiting till the jailer come

  To ope his prison-door!”


Painted by J. Martin







The fair, broad plains of Jordan, rich with all

Their wealth of summer fruitage, stretched themselves

Beneath the orient day. The haunting mists

Still folded to their bosoms the hushed streams,

O’er which they had kept night-watch. Flocks and herds

Dotting the green, fresh pastures stirless lay,

While shepherds slept beside them.



The morning twilight slowly raised its lids

On the devoted city, quiet now,

With its wild midnight orgies overworn—

As from its gate a little band stole forth

With fearful footsteps, and affrighted gaze

Turned ever upward to the clear, deep heavens,

Where all the stars were fading into day.


A light, irradiate as the astral glow

Of planetary lustre, marked the brows

Of those who guided them—betokening

Angelic nature, as in the quick haste

Of their divine commission fast they urged

The trembling lingerers. They pressed the speed

Of the old man, bewildered and amazed

By weakening terror, and they caught the hands

Which the distracted mother madly wrung,

To think upon her children left behind,

’Mid the doomed multitude, and drew her on

With gentle violence: they cheered the flight

Of the twain daughters, who, aghast with fear,

Were fain to lay their foreheads in the dust,

In palsied helplessness. With the sweet power

Of angel eloquence—with sympathies

That yearned above their poor humanity

In Christ-like tenderness, they hasted still

Their lagging steps.


                  “Escape ye, for your lives

Look not behind you! neither tarry ye

In all the verdant plain:—Escape, escape

Safe to the mountain, lest ye be consumed:”


The level sunbeams slant athwart the plain

Through the long shadows of the flying group—

Yet the destruction lingered; yet the sky

Gave forth no presage of the coming wrath.

The sward, dew-beaded, yielded to their tread

Never more softly, and the bannered palms

Playfully dallied with the morning breeze.

Doubt grew to strength within the mother’s soul,

Beneath the firmamental quietude;

And though the angel’s clasp was on her hand,

She backward looked, with longing, loving gaze,

Incredulous of evil, to the roofs

And lines of fair, white walls, that glittering lay

Serene in the pure dawn. The rigid hand

Dropped icy from the angel’s—the stark form

Stood fixed, and motionless, and marble pale—

A ghostly monument of unbelief.


Dumb with the tracking fear that suffered not

A moment’s waste in sorrow—on they pressed

And gained the place of refuge. Then they turned,

Breathless and tottering, with their straining eyes

Clouded with horror, and their lips apart

In speechless eagerness, and awful dread,

Toward the distant city.


                       The calm morn

Seemed sliding downward to abysmal night:

All Nature’s face grew sickly: through the plain,

The fell simoom came sweeping like a fiend,

Twisting the tallest palm-trees, as their stems

Were lithest summer reeds, and wrenching up

Centurial cedars. Silver-threaded streams

Grew to a leaden blackness: tempest-clouds,

Lurid with fiery fringes, marshaled all

Their most terrific grandeur, and rolled on

In thunderous darkness, till the funeral heavens

Thrilled to the shock, and the fast-anchored earth

Seemed throbbing in the agitated swell

Of fathomless ether. Sulphurous, forked flames,

Like myriads of avenging swords, flashed out

Above the guilty cities, and the shriek

Of frantic multitudes came roaring on

In dismal howls, as if the eternal pit

Had emptied forth its demons. The hot wrath

Of God’s fierce anger rained with scathing breath

The deluge-fire of a descending hell—

And in the flaming sheets, the stately towers—

The lofty mausoleums—the proud walls—

The rich abodes of princes—and the homes

Of Heaven-defying wickedness, were wrapped

As in a fitting cerement.


                         When the strength

Of the spent storm of fury died away,

And the ghast ministers of wrath drew off

Their fearful hosts from that grim battle-field—

The holy Patriarch, who had sought by prayer

To turn aside the vengeance, stretched his view

Across the plains of Jordan; but no walls

Gleamed in the early sunshine; no fair flocks

Studded the bleak, swart slopes; no waving trees

Bent to the morning wind. Destruction swooped,

Like a fierce raven screaming o’er its prey,

Above the desert-waste: the seething smoke

Hung, pall-like, round the ruins: and he bowed

His head in sad yet meek submissiveness

Before the righteous judgments of his God.



In our last number we proposed to give a short biographical sketch of Benjamin Harris Brewster, as the first of a series of rapid portraits of such eminent young men as chance and association have made us intimate with, that we might thereby incite in the minds of some of the young men amongst our readers a laudable ambition to excel, and arouse that latent energy of character which is the foundation of all true personal greatness in America.

Benjamin Harris Brewster is a lineal descendant on his father’s side of Elder William Brewster, whose name is embalmed in all true hearts as the intrepid ruling elder in that Band of Heroes and unbending worshipers of freedom of conscience, who landed from the Mayflower at Plymouth, in December 1620. The heroism of Brewster, Robinson and others of that immortal band of brave men and women, prior to their embarkation at Holland, are facts of history, and as familiar to every student as their subsequent trials and dauntless energy in braving them.

Mr. Brewster’s family were originally from New Jersey. A descendant of Elder Brewster’s removed from Plymouth to New Jersey, and there Mr. B. H. Brewster, his great-grandson, was born. In his mother’s family a great-grandfather—a Duval, was a refugee Huguenot—“one of that handful of whom the world was not worthy, who without stain, without reproach, were crushed to the dust, were delivered up to the rack, the scourge, the dungeon, the stake, as if accursed of Heaven, until at last a weeping and bleeding remnant of them found their way to our land and poured into our veins the rich stream of Huguenot blood.” Thus from both sides of his house he inherits rich, old democratic blood. Puritan and Huguenot blood. Blood that an American may be proud of. His ancestors assisted in planting that holy seed of Liberty which has sprung into so mighty a tree, and under whose thick spreading branches the oppressed of all nations find shelter.

Mr. Brewster was born in Salem county, New Jersey, during a transient residence of his parents in that place. When only a few months old his parents returned to their former residence in Philadelphia, where he has ever since lived. He early gave promise of great quickness of intellect, but from his earliest childhood he was particularly remarkable for strict truthfulness and integrity—he scorned a lie, even an evasion, though it might save him the dreaded humiliation of punishment. “Manly, straightforward, upright,” were words always applied to him by those who knew him in youth, and these qualities made him a stay and a comfort to his family at an age when most young men are dependents.

He left the preparatory school of Dr. Wiltbank at fourteen and entered the University of Pennsylvania, but was removed from it six months after to Princeton College, where he graduated at the age of eighteen years, and commenced the study of law in this city, in the office of Eli K. Price, Esq. In 1837, at the age of 21 years, he became a member of the Philadelphia bar. Starting on the road of life in that most arduous of all professions, the law, with few friends, he early exhibited those peculiar traits of fitness for his profession that so speedily placed him among its leaders. His success has been remarkable—not in the sense of the world generally—but in the substantial character of his business, and in his position among his brethren of the bar. He early saw the door of distinction open to him, and resolved to pass its threshold and make for himself an honorable name. With that industry and energy that are part of his character, he speedily, while yet a young man, rose in his profession, and took a prominent place among the best of that bar, long since acknowledged to be the strongest in the country. His mind is Analytical in an eminent degree, it perceives and grasps with a quickness, oftentimes wonderful, the strong points of a case, which are lucidly put before the jury. He uses little ornament, as we usually understand it, though he has at times shown his ability to wield that most effective of all the orator’s weapons; he presents in a brief, sententious style, with all the force that such a style is so naturally fitted for the gist of his case. His forte as a lawyer is before the court in banc upon a question of law—the forum that tests the real ability of so many—where mere speech-making—the tinsel and clap-trap of the profession pass at their real value, and where mind alone is the genuine currency—where educated minds are to be taught, altered, or convinced. In this department of his profession Mr. Brewster is at home, and brings to bear on the argument of his cases, all the powers of his peculiarly well-stored mind. He is by no means, however, deficient before a jury, as many of our citizens will recollect, in recalling to mind his many triumphs in this city. While he is kind to his colleagues, he is respectful but independent in his bearing toward the Court, but permitting no undue interference in his or his client’s business, yet giving to all the respect that position or talents should demand.

Mr. Brewster’s appearance before the Court is impressive. Thoughtful, earnest, and of fine manners, he at once impresses you with the importance of his cause, and that that which he is about to say is the result of no passing thought, but of care and deliberation—graceful and dignified in his manner he yet becomes, when warm with his subject, vehement without losing his self-possession, oftentimes treading a little out of his path to indulge in a pleasantry to relieve the dry detail of legal discussion, still maintaining the thread and course of his argument. Always courteous in an eminent degree to his adversary, high-toned and honorable in all his intercourse with the world, he exhibits it in argument, by refusing at all times to pervert facts, to overstrain or misstate the well-settled law of the land. He is ready and apt; exhibiting his readiness, and the ability with which he has prepared his case by the prompt answers of points against him suggested during argument by the Court or his adversary.

Mr. Kingman, the highly talented and veteran correspondent of the New York Journal of Commerce, said of him, “His (Mr. Brewster’s) manner is happy and winning—his voice mellow and flowing, and, as Mr. Wirt used to say of one of his favorites, he can render interesting to any auditory the dryest legal citation by the magical effect of his tasteful reading.” His talents as a lawyer have drawn him from our local courts, and the scenes of his greatest success have been in that “strongest of Courts” the Supreme Court of the United States at Washington. In a case that now presents itself to our mind, he more than distinguished himself—we mention, we are sure, from its public character, and the importance of the questions involved to all, a familiar case, when we name “The United States vs. The County of Philadelphia.” It involved the great constitutional question of the right of a State Government to tax the unceded realty of the United States necessary for the purposes of the Federal Government. This was a question particularly suited to the turn of mind of Mr. Brewster, and it was to be argued before a Court, the ablest and the brightest in the land. His argument elicited from all parts the highest and the warmest praise. The New York Tribune, a paper of high character for ability and impartiality, says, that “a long, elaborate, and powerful argument was delivered before the Supreme Court yesterday by Benjamin H. Brewster, of Philadelphia, which has produced a great impression in our legal circles, and secured at once for Mr. Brewster the reputation of being one of the ablest constitutional lawyers in the country. The principle to be defined and settled in the case in which Mr. B. is engaged, is of the highest importance, and the whole country is certainly greatly indebted to the learning and eloquence of that gentleman for the convincing manner in which he pointed out and defined the rights of the States, and the ability with which he defended those rights against Federal encroachment.” The New York Journal of Commerce said of it, “Mr. Brewster’s argument necessarily embraced some detail, and some citations, and various illustrations, and still he managed to bring it all within the compass of less than two hours. Mr. Brewster is a rising star, and destined at no distant day to become a shining light of the federal tribunal.” And these are but two, selected at random from a host of such compliments. The result showed the truth of these views of Mr. Brewster’s argument.

His argument in this now famous case, was not published, notwithstanding the urgent request of many friends that it should be—with a modesty that we think false, but which is usually the attendant upon real ability, he was contented with having done work well without seeking by parade to make it the medium of pecuniary benefit. His character does not, of course, stand upon this case alone, as the records of the court at Washington will show, though, in truth, it might stand on a less secure foundation. Almost as a necessary consequence of Mr. Brewster’s professional life, he has been more or less identified with the various political questions of the day. Early in life he attached himself from conviction to the Democratic party, and steadily since, “through good and evil report,” he has adhered to and defended with voice and pen, the interest and doctrines of that party. He was a senatorial delegate from Pennsylvania to the Baltimore Convention of 1844, and was the mover of the “two-third rule” in that Convention, to which fact Mr. Polk unquestionably owed his nomination. Shortly after the inauguration, Mr. Polk tendered him, unsolicited, the judicial appointment of Cherokee Commissioner. This Mr. Brewster accepted. It was an arduous and responsible position, requiring great industry and ability to discharge faithfully. By his course as Commissioner, he won the esteem and respect of the suitors, and saved to the government, from the jaws of rapacious speculators, millions of dollars. He received at the expiration of the term for which the office was enacted, the thanks and approval of the President.

Mr. Brewster is a warm supporter of the political views of Gen. Cass, and is, perhaps, the most efficient, both with voice and pen, of the many friends of that distinguished statesman in Pennsylvania. Differing widely, as we do, from Mr. Brewster in political sentiment, we can yet bear testimony to the intrepid conduct of the man, his high-hearted courage in the cause of his friend, and his energetic endeavors to secure the ultimate triumph of General Cass in the next Baltimore Convention. And although we cannot vote for General Cass, we can almost wish him success for the sake of seeing Mr. Brewster’s earnest and manly efforts crowned with success. If General Cass has many such friends—and Mr. Brewster’s friendship is of personal intimacy—he must have qualities that most politicians deny opponents and rivals, for we are satisfied that no man can attach to himself heartily, any number of men of intellectual force such as Brewster has, without possessing qualities of head and heart far above the grade of many aspiring candidates for the presidency.

Since his retirement from connection with the administration of Mr. Polk, Mr. Brewster has been engaged so much in the active pursuits of his profession as to prevent his giving much of his time to active politics, though often since by his pen, he has shown his interest in the great questions that have been lately agitating the country; and whenever the interests of General Cass are in jeopardy, his voice is heard in council, and his pen, lightning-winged, flies to the rescue.

Having thus hastily glanced at Mr. Brewster’s position as a lawyer and a public man, and used, as we confess we have done, the opinions and sentiments of more than one member of the Philadelphia bar in high standing, and the unsolicited endorsement of men high in his party, let us take a closer view of the man—of his personal character, the proud arch and basis of the structure, and tell, with all the freedom of an intimate friend, what we feel we ought to say, both in justice to our readers, to give them a fair view of the man, and to Mr. Brewster, to show how great have been his achievements against formidable odds.

Mr. Brewster has inherited in an eminent degree the endurance and high courage of his ancestors. His path has been a rough one, with an accumulation of difficulties besetting him on all sides, at the very threshold of boyhood, which would have prostrated almost any other man. But he at that early age made a resolute front, and met and pressed struggling through all opposition.

He in early life met with an accident, the scars from which still linger upon his countenance. This, in the opinion of the timid and ill-advised, was sufficient for them to urge him into a more quiet and secluded profession than that of an advocate. But they little knew, these weak ones, the dauntless bravery of his soul—the fearless, determined purpose, the iron will of the man. His motto has been, from early boyhood, and his life has illustrated it nobly—“There is nothing unconquerable to him that dares.” His whole life has been one of struggles, of resolves and of victories. His manly self-possession under all disasters, his vehement purpose to overcome, in spite of fate and circumstances, have given an impetuosity and daring to his character which enable him to overleap the impossibilities of other men. Had he submitted to the dictation of the doubtful, regarded the counsel of the timid-wise, his lofty soul would have been dwarfed, his heroic will chafing for action in seclusion, would have made him a misanthrope—a pining and peevish companion, a cynic toward man and a snarler at Providence—the plague of a household, a weariness unto himself.

But with the true courage which faces disasters, the inborn greatness which judges of its own capacity to endure, with an eye fixed upon the successful future, which lifts its blazing front to the gaze of true genius, he spurned all control, and consulting the inward teachings of his own spirit, he resolved, he dared and he has triumphed. With a manly heart, lifted in its gigantic resolves above all mere considerations of self—obeying all of its generous and noble impulses, he has from early manhood devoted his energies to build a paradise around those he loves—to render his home the abode of all that refines, of Art, Music and Society—to gather around him those who appreciated his manhood, and to impart by all the delicate and tender relations and attentions of a son and a brother, the largest amount of happiness which domestic life can afford. With what a royalty of soul he has done all this, let those answer who have spent their most delightful hours in his drawing-rooms—where the stern lawyer, the energetic champion of political principles and rights has unbended, and let loose the bounding joyousness of the man—where his heart has let off its bubbles in very glee, and where the exhaustless stores of his memory are poured out in wantonness, and his imagination and wit flash and play in perfect abandonment. No man who has not enjoyed his intimacy, his confidence and his friendship, can make any just estimate of his ability or worth.

As a conversationalist, it has not been our fortune to meet with many who are his equals, either in the readiness or the variety of his topics, the fine play of his fancy, or the mellow flow of his words. There is not at this bar, a man of his years, who is his equal in scholarship—who has accumulated so vast a mass of curious learning. Upon all questions of History, Philosophy or Biography—he is the referee among his friends. His accuracy is singularly nice—no event of which he has read, seems ever to escape the tenacious grasp of his memory. No quotation from the Classics, apt at the moment, is ever wanting to illustrate or point an anecdote or a sentence. His knowledge of old English literature is thorough, and his acquaintance with the modern familiar and full. He is, in all respects a thorough student—stealing the hours which others devote to idle pleasure or indolent sleep, to enlarge his stores of knowledge and make broader and surer the foundations of intellectual power.

The defect of Mr. Brewster’s character has been the terrible impetuosity of his impulses, which would carry him to the gates of Hades in pursuit of a foe, and through a burning river in support of a friend—frequently, too, without stopping to ask whether either was worth the sacrifice. Hence, he has sometimes become the assailant and the champion, without the clearest notions as to which side victory justly belonged. These impulses, too, were as quick as they were strong. The lightning was not more sudden than his wrath—nor more certain in its destructiveness. No man made an enemy of him and escaped the well-timed blow. But his vengeance was rarely garnered, but blazed out in a fury which lent additional terror to the funeral pile of his victim. His generous sentiments are easily touched. His time, his talents, his whole soul are given to the cause of a friend. There is no halfway-house on the road to his heart—the door is fast shut, or the whole of the spacious apartments are thrown open, and the visitor is received amid a blaze of light from every genial corner.

Mr. Brewster has recently been abroad, and travel, which is so often a test of character, has improved him. He returns from Europe with his energy of soul held in check—his feelings are composed and chastened—his manner is subdued to a more Christian serenity—his voice has not its old, impetuous volume—the rushing heat of passion comes from his lips with less of its scorching severity. Life has broader aims in his eyes than formerly—the hour and to-day, are less important—the immediate success less looked to—the distant future is lived for more earnestly, with wiser hopes of a happy present hereafter. All this comes upon us—his old associate—with a force the greater, because we have been less with him, of late; and the gradual, familiar growing of these better purposes of soul have been less visible to us—they burst upon us like a strain of pure music when discord has suddenly been stilled. Mr. Brewster, himself, is a happier man—his old exuberant gayety is a well-tempered serenity and joyousness—the picture has been toned down, and the artist dwells upon it as a diviner effort of the Creator.

Mr. Brewster has nothing to do now but to wait!—high honors will come to him unsolicited. His position is assured. His ability, his integrity, his earnest energy of soul for the right and the true, open the pathway for all that the ambition of a Christian has a right to look for. This is Prophecy—the Inspiration which Truth impresses upon the soul.

G. R. G.





On such a blue and breezy summer’s day,

The winds seem charmed that wander round this bay.

The waves that murmur on the sunward beach,

Whisper of things beyond the Present’s reach.

Each winged bark that skims along the sea

Seems gliding like a dream of mystery.

Light of far Grecian days comes glimmering through

This pure crystaline sky of cloudless blue.

Here are the rocks where gold-haired syrens sang;

Here Tasso’s harp in later ages rang.

Over the sacred waves the purple isles

Answer the heavens with their serenest smiles:

Round yonder point, steep Capri with her caves;

Beyond, where the sky kisses the far waves,

Those amethystine sisters of the sea,

Prochyta and the blue Inarime.

Along the shore from Baia’s rained towers

To marble Pompeii, half embalmed in flowers,

Stretches the chain of towns along the sea;

And gleaming in the midst, proud Napoli

Sits like a young and pearl-crowned ocean queen

Gazing into her mirror of clear green.

And over all the bodeful genius

Of this fair clime—fire-eyed Vesuvius

Frowns, the sole troubled spirit of the scene—

And even him the distance makes serene.

All this I see from my still summer home,

A bower where nought but peace and beauty come.

Geraniums and roses round me bloom—

From orange-groves, amid whose verdant gloom

Gold fruit and silver flowers together shine,

Come orient odors. A thick blossoming vine

Shadows the terrace where, even as I write,

The wind snows down the olive-blossoms white.

Above, the birds’ sweet and unwearied song;

Beneath, the ocean whispers all day long.

Sometimes, when morning lights the rippling waves

Below the steep rocks and the ocean caves,

The sunshine weaves a net of flickering gleams.

Fit to entrap a Syren in her dreams.

There tangled braids of ever-changing light

In golden mazes glitter up the sand,

And underneath, the rocks and pebbles bright

Glow like rich jewels of the Eastern land.

Well might such sweet, transparent waters hold

Tritons and nymphs with locks of liquid gold;

For nothing were too beautiful to be

Born from the pure depths of this summer sea.


Four moons have passed—and nights and days have flown

Cloudless—a summer of an orient tone,

Since my unequal pen essayed to tell

Brief passages of what I loved so well.

Above me now, where blossoms fell in spring,

Large purple grapes hang thickly clustering;

The fig-tree near, with ample leaves displayed,

Shelters its sweet, cool fruit beneath their shade.

Still hang the oranges upon their stems,

Whose dark green foliage makes them glow like gems.

The cypresses by yonder convent wall

Shoot up as freshly green, as stately tall,

And there the drowsy vesper-bell ne’er tires

Calling to prayers the brown-robed, bearded friars.

Down on the beach, content with slender gain,

Still drag their nets the red-capped fishermen.

Still glide the days as fair—the nights more cool,

The sea is still as ever beautiful;

And yonder purple mount, towering as proud

Still blends its light smoke with the flying cloud.

And now, ere I these pleasant scenes resign,

I would yet linger o’er and make them mine.

I would remember every odorous breeze

That wafted incense from these orange-trees—

The roses clustering on their leafy stalks,

Dropping their faint leaves in the garden walks—

The sweet geraniums and the passion flowers

Entwined with multifloras—the noon hours

When underneath the oaks I watched the sea

Rippling below me calm and dreamily.

The hueless olives where the full moon came

Kindling behind them with a holy flame,

Touching their pale leaves with mysterious sheen

And shimmering o’er old boughs of silvery green—

Above, the inextinguishable lights

That made all nights in heaven like festal nights,

That seemed too holy for frail men to keep,

And yet too costly to be spent in sleep.

O lovely nights and days! too quickly flown;

Leave me the memory of your sweetest tone.

O ocean! long I’ve lingered on thy shore,

Lulled by thy whisper, wakened by thy roar.

Ere I depart and see no more thy face,

Let me retain some sign of thy embrace—

Not pearls nor painted shells, nor coral rare,

But dreams of Beauty. So the goddess fair,

Who rules all hearts, and fills the Olympian home,

Rose in a sea-shell from thy glittering foam—

Sprang an immortal to the blaze of day,

And wide o’er gods and men extends her sway.







Cervus Tarandus. American Rein-Deer.


It is not a little extraordinary, that this magnificent and noble species, which exists in considerable numbers within two hundred miles of the spot where I sit writing, in the Adirondack Highlands—I mean, of New York—which abounds in the north-eastern part of Maine, swarms in New Brunswick and Newfoundland, and indeed everywhere North of the St. Lawrence and Ottawa, to the extremest Arctic Regions yet penetrated by the foot of man, should be yet less known to American writers—even on the topic of Natural History—than most animals of Central Asia, or the inhospitable wilds of Southern Africa. It is not even determined—so little care has been taken in examining or identifying specimens—whether it is one and the same, or a different species from the Reindeer of the Europe-Asiatic continent; nor have any of its peculiarities been noted down, such as the common indications of its stature, antlers, pelage, and color, much less its anatomical and osseous structure, so as to permit of any accurate comparison being drawn, or decision arrived at.

In proof of the loose way in which these self-styled descriptions of rare animals are drawn, in books of solemn pretension and supposed authority, I shall proceed to quote the following from the Encyclopædia Americana—a work of which I can only say, that it is equally profuse of needless information on subjects trite to every Sophomore, and sparing of facts, such as require research and are required by men of ordinary reading, who will search its pages vainly for what on occasion they may need to ask it.

Reindeer”—says the authority. “These animals inhabit the Arctic Islands of Spitzbergen, and the northern extremity of the Old Continent, never having extended, according to Cuvier, to the southward of the Baltic. They have been long domesticated, and their appearance and habits are well described by naturalists. The American Reindeer, or Cariboo, are much less generally known; they have, however, so strong a resemblance to the Lapland deer, that they have always been considered to be the same species, though the fact has never been completely established. The American Indians have never profited by the docility of this animal, to aid them in transporting their families and property, though they annually destroy great numbers for their flesh and hides. There appear to be several varieties of this useful quadruped peculiar to the high northern regions of the American Continent, which are ably described by Doctor Richardson, one of the companions of Captain Franklin, in his arduous attempt to reach the North Pole by land. The closeness of the hair of the Cariboo, and the lightness of its skin, when dressed, render it the most appropriate article for winter clothing in the high latitudes. The hoofs of the Reindeer are very large, and spread greatly, and thus enable it to cross the yielding snows without sinking.”

And this—without one word of the height, weight, color, or habitat of the animal—is the only information which the Editor of the American Encyclopædia thinks proper to give his readers—except a brief description of Doctor Richardson, about whom he seems to know a little, if he knew nothing about Cariboo—concerning an animal, which is killed almost annually within fifty miles of Albany, sold annually in Montreal, and in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia almost as common an article as venison, or Moose-meat during winter in the markets.

Would not any one suppose, on reading the above, that he was dealing with the description of an animal, which roamed only wastes untrodden by the foot of the white man, save the adventurous explorers of the Arctic Circles, and concerning which no information can be gained by the ordinary naturalists of this country?

Cuvier and Richardson, and Audubon’s stupendous work are not attainable by general readers, or even ordinary writers of cities; to those of the country they are utterly inaccessible—but to Encyclopædists, and to men who sit down to reproduce great works on Natural History, who choose to consult them, they are perfectly and easily open; and there is no shadow of excuse for those who profess to teach others, yet refuse to learn themselves.

Had the writer of the above worthless trash thought fit to compare Doctor Richardson’s description of the Cariboo, which it seems he had read—and which, like all that singularly able naturalist’s descriptions, is doubtless as minute as correct—with Cuvier’s description of the Reindeer, he might have pronounced as easily, as he could whether two and two make four or five, whether the American and Europe-Asiatic deer are identical or different. Godman, in his “Quadrupeds of North America,” though a little more definite than Dr. Leiber, is scarce less bald and brief. Dr. Dekay, whose lamented life has recently been brought to an untimely close, though he suspected it to be a denizen of New York, was not fully assured of the fact, and therefore has not, I think, described it in his Fauna of that State.

I have myself, unfortunately, no immediate access to either Richardson or Cuvier; nor even to any well established work on the Animals of Northern Europe. But I have seen a large herd, in my youth, of the Lapland Reindeer, which, with their Esquimaux attendants were exhibited many years ago in London; previous to a futile attempt at naturalizing them in the Highlands and Western Isles of Scotland; and have a fair, general remembrance of the animal. I possess antlers of the Cariboo, which hang in my hall, and which are accurately portrayed in the wood-cut; I have handled twenty times the hides of this great deer; and I have daily opportunities—in the office of my friend, W. T. Porter, of the Spirit of the Times—to examine the preserved heads and legs of even finer specimens than my own. I have also letters, private, and writings published, of a New Brunswicker, who has killed the Cariboo fifty times, and had opportunities of seeing the European Reindeer, at the Zoological Gardens in London, long since myself. I can, therefore, form a very fair conjecture at the identity or non-identity of the species. At least I can give some particulars of structure, stature, and pelage of the American Cariboo, which will enable others to judge, who are better posted up than I, in the peculiarities of the Lapland Reindeer. And first—I will premise that although I have never seen the Cariboo in life, or in his native woods—which I trust to do before the snows of the next March shall have melted—the wood-cut illustration of this number is so closely made up from measurements of the various parts, heads, antlers, legs and hides of the animal, that I believe it to be as nearly correct as any likeness can be, which is not taken from an especial individual of the race.

In the first place—as to the stature of the Cariboo, I was long ago struck by the statements of the New Brunswick writer, “Meadows,” alias Mr. Barton Wallop, alluded to above, which may be found in Porter’s edition of Hawker’s Field Sports, p. 326-333—“The Cariboo of this country are very like the Reindeer, only a little larger”—and again—“as this is the first time you have seen a Cariboo trail, you will observe it is much like that of an ox, save that the cleft is much more open, and the pastern of the animal being very long and flexible, comes down the whole length on the snow, and gives the animal additional support.”

Arguing on this statement, in my “Field Sports,” knowing Meadows to have seen both animals, that they must be distinct, I pointed out—no one could dream of comparing a Lapland Reindeer’s track to that of an ox, any more than to that of an elephant; and observed further, that the Lapland Reindeer is not a larger, but—to my recollection—a smaller animal than the common American Red-deer, Cervus Virginianus of Naturalists. This coming casually under Mr. Wallop’s eye, he wrote to me, in full confirmation of my opinion, that he had recently seen Lapland Reindeer in the Regent’s Park Zoological Gardens, and wished to amend his former dictum, by saying, that the Cariboo is at least one-third taller than the Lapland deer, and otherwise larger, and in other respects very different. Also, that the Lapland animal is not taller than the British Stag, or the American Common Deer, or, if at all, very slightly so.

Now, to come to my own observation, verified by measurement. The Cariboo antlers in my own possession, not an unusually large pair, measure as follows:

Extreme width from tip to tip, one foot 4½ inches. Length of curvature of antlers, from root to tip, two feet 3½ inches. Direct height, 23 inches. Breadth of the palmated brow antlers, 8 inches. Length of do., 11 inches. Breadth of upper palm, 8 inches. Length of do., 12 inches. Girth at the root of antler, 5½ inches. At insertion of upper prong, 4 inches. Number of prongs at the tips, unequal—three and two. At the upper palms, three. On the lower palms, seven processes, including the principal point.

Compare with this, the measurements of the antlers of a very fine specimen of the common American deer, Cervus Virginianus.

Extreme width from tip to tip, 11 inches. Length of curvature along the back of antlers from root to tip, two feet and half an inch. Direct height, 15 inches.

Observe, however, that the greater curvature in the horns of the American deer, while it causes a larger comparative measurement, leaves a vast excess in height and show to the Cariboo.

In the Cariboo, moreover—see cut—the structure of the horns is directly the reverse of that of any other palmated-horned animal I ever remember to have seen; as the Moose, the English Fallow-deer, and to the best of my recollection the Europe-Asiatic Reindeer. In both the former of these animals, the broad palms form the extreme upper tips; while the lower spurs and brow antlers are round prongs; and, to the best of my memory, the reindeer has no very conspicuous palms at all.

In our common deer, again, contrary to any other deer I have ever seen—except a very noble non-descript specimen recently sent from Calcutta to the Spirit of the Times—the main branch of the antlers curves forward over the brow, offering the main defenses, the true brow antlers being mere erect prongs; while all the tines are posterior to the main branch.

In the American Elk, and in the British Stag, or Red-deer, and in all other round-horned deer I ever saw, the main antlers rise erectly, with a slight backward curve, the brow antler and all the other tines springing from it anteriorly, and forming the true weapons for the animal’s defense.

The Cariboo, therefore, presents a curious combination of the round-horned and palmated-horned deer, in the first instance; and of the usual, and American, round-horn structure, in the second. First, it has the round, pointed tips and sharp, round prongs of the round-horned deer above, with the flat, leaf-like blades of the palmated-horned deer below. And, secondly, it has the forward curve at the tips and backward prongs, above, of the American round-horn, with the terrible brow antlers and forward tines of the usual structure below.

Lastly, it differs from all in this—that its brow antlers, instead of dividing with an outward curve over and without each eye, closes with a straight inward inclination, until the tips almost meet, nearly in the centre of a brow.

Once more, as to size, there are the leg, with hoof, pastern and cannon-bone of an ordinary sized Cariboo; and the leg, with hoof, pastern and cannon-bone of an extraordinarily large-sized American deer, and as such selected, hanging side by side in Mr. Porter’s office. The limb of the Cariboo is considerably more than one-third superior in size to that of the common deer, and is fully equal to that of a yearling heifer of the very largest stature, and from its peculiar structure, being cleft nearly the full length of the pastern to the fetlock-joint, would evidently leave a much larger track.

I have seen and ridden aged thorough-bred horses of fourteen and a half hands—four foot ten inches high—whose limbs were in all respects inferior to that of this superb specimen of the deer tribe; and right confident am I, from observation of several of their heads, their hides and hoofs, that from fourteen and a half to fifteen hands will be found to be the average height of the Cariboo. If the Lapland Reindeer ever exceeds thirteen it will be surprising to me. While on this topic, however, I will beg the first Canadian or Nova Scotian hunter whose eye this may meet, to furnish me with the full statements of height, weight and measurement of any Cariboo he may be so fortunate as to kill, or to have killed, during the present winter. Readers of Graham will find in the February number of the present year a correct and spirited representation of the antlers of the English red-deer; and, if they will look back to the June and August numbers of 1851, they will find those of the moose and American deer, designed by myself from the life, which will far more easily convey the comparison which I desire to draw than written words.

As regards the nature of the pelage, or fur, for it is almost such, of the Cariboo, so far from its being, as the wiseacre of the Encyclopædia states, remarkable for closeness and compactness, it is by all odds the loosest and longest haired of any deer I ever saw; being, particularly about the head and neck, so shaggy as to appear almost maned.

In color, it is the most grizzly of deer, and though comparatively dark brown on the back, the hide is generally speaking light, almost dun colored, and on the head and neck fulvous, or tawny gray, largely mixed with white hairs.

The flesh is said to be delicious; and the leather made by the Indians from its skin, by their peculiar process, is of unsurpassed excellence for leggings, moccasons or the like; especially for the moccason to be used under snow-shoes.

As to its habits, while the Lapland or Siberian Reindeer is the tamest and most docile of its genus, the American Cariboo is the fiercest, fleetest, wildest, shyest and most untameable. So much so, that they are rarely pursued by white hunters, or shot by them, except through casual good-fortune; Indians alone having the patience and instinctive craft, which enables them to crawl on them unseen, unsmelt—for the nose of the Cariboo can detect the smallest taint upon the air of any thing human at least two miles up wind of him—and unsuspected. If he take alarm and start off on the run, no one dreams of pursuing. As well pursue the wind, of which no man knoweth whence it cometh or whither it goeth. Snow-shoes against him alone avail nothing, for propped up on the broad, natural snow-shoes of his long, elastic pasterns and wide-cleft clacking hoofs, he shoots over the thinnest crust, over the deepest drifts, unbroken; in which the lordly moose would soon flounder, shoulder-deep, if hard pressed, and the graceful deer would fall despairing, and bleat in vain for mercy—but he, the ship of the winter wilderness, outspeeds the wind among his native pines and tamaracks—even as the desert ship, the dromedary, outtrots the red simoom on the terrible Zahara—and once started, may be seen no more by human eyes, nor run down by fleetest feet of man, no, not if they pursue him from their nightly-casual camps, unwearied, following his trail by the day, by the week, by the month, till a fresh snow efface his tracks, and leave the hunter at the last, as he was at the first of the chase; less only the fatigue, the disappointment and the folly.

Therefore by woodsmen, whether white or red-skinned, he is never followed. Indians by hundreds in the provinces, and many loggers and hunters in the Eastern states, can take and keep his trail in suitable weather—the best time is the latter end of February or the beginning of March; the best weather is when a light, fresh snow of some three or four inches has fallen on the top of deep drifts and a solid crust; the fresh snow giving the means of following the trail; the firm crust yielding a support to the broad snow-shoes and enabling the stalkers to trail with silence and celerity combined. Then they crawl onward, breathless and voiceless, up wind always, following the foot-prints of the wandering, pasturing, wantoning deer; judging by signs, unmistakable to the veteran hunter, undistinguishable to the novice, of the distance or proximity of their game; until they steal upon the herd unsuspected, and either finish the day with a sure shot and a triumphant whoop; or discover that the game has taken alarm and started on the jump, and so give it up in despair.

One man perhaps in a thousand can still-hunt, or stalk, Cariboo in the summer season. He, when he has discovered a herd feeding up wind, at a leisurely pace and clearly unalarmed, stations a comrade in close ambush, well down wind and to leeward of their upward track, and then himself, after closely observing their mood, motions and line of course, strikes off in a wide circle well to leeward, until he has got a mile or two ahead of the herd, when very slowly and guardedly, observing the profoundest silence, he cuts across their direction, and gives them his wind, as it is technically termed, dead ahead. This is the crisis of the affair; if he give the wind too strongly, or too rashly, if he make the slightest noise or motion, they scatter in an instant, and away. If he give it slightly, gradually, and casually as it were, not fancying themselves pursued, they merely turn away from the remote danger, and instead of flying, merely feed away from it, working their way down wind to the deadly ambush, of which their keenest scent cannot so inform them. If he succeed in this, inch by inch, he crawls after them, never pressing them, or drawing in upon them, but preserving the same distance still, still giving them the same wind as at the first, so that he creates no panic or confusion, until at length, when close upon the hidden peril, his sudden whoop sends them headlong down the deceitful breeze upon the treacherous rifle.

Of all wood-craft none is so difficult, none requires so rare a combination as this, of quickness of sight, wariness of tread, very instinct of the craft, and perfection of judgment. When resorted to, and performed to the very admiration of woodmen, it does not succeed once in a hundred times—therefore not by one man in a thousand is it ever resorted to at all, and by him, rather in the wantonness of wood-craft, and by way of boastful experiment, than with any hope, much less expectation of success.

For once, in my illustration, the trick has been played, and the game wins—the whoop is pealing on the wind beyond the dark, sheltering pines and hemlocks—the herd is scattered to the four winds of heaven—but the monarch of the wilderness, the prime bull of the herd, bears down in his headlong terror full on the ambushed rifle.

Lo! with how brave a bound he clears that prostrate log. But the keen eye of the woodman is upon him; another moment, and it shall glare along the deadly rifle; the sharp, short crack shall awake the echoes of the forest, and ere they shall have subsided into silence, the pride of the woods shall have gasped out his last sigh on the gory green-sward.

But this you will say is fancy—scarcely fact. Be it so. What follows shall be fact, not fancy. For I shall beg leave to quote a few pages from Porter’s Hawker by that “Meadows,” whom I have already mentioned—since his is the best description of this noble sport extant; since to reproduce it, giving his thoughts in my own altered words were rankest plagiary; and since, if it meet his eye, he will be rather pleased than hurt that I have winged his words into a wider field and to a larger audience than he at first addressed them.

I will premise only, that “Howard,” who figures as the hero, is a New Brunswicker, in New Brunswick; “Meadows,” the narrator, an English tyro visiting his friend in the province; Sabatisie, a Micmac Indian, henchman and guide of Meadows; and Billy, last not least, Howard’s pet bull terrier. Scene, daybreak! they have issued from the camp close to the hunting-ground where the Cariboo are supposed to “won”—as Chaucer would have written it—when lo! quoth Meadows—

“After a hearty meal, every thing being ready, we mounted our snow-shoes and marched. The first golden rays were just struggling through the gray East, and dispersing the thick mist which hung over our camp, as I strode forth on my first Cariboo hunt, my heart leaping in anxious anticipation, and my nerves strung by the healthy atmosphere. We proceeded in silence, and had ample time to observe the lonely grandeur of the surrounding forest; the death-like stillness enlivened only by the cheerful chirp of the active ground-squirrel, or the loud boring of that most beautiful of woodpeckers, the Hid. We crossed Cariboo tracks at every step, but still the Indian proceeded, his quick eye glancing at every trail. After about an hour’s walk, we found ourselves ascending a steep mountain. Here the Indian came to a halt: in a low tone he told us that we were now near the Cariboo ground, this being the warm side of the hill, and good feeding ground; cautioning us to be quiet, we again advanced, but had not gone far before we came to a trail that the Indian said was only made last night. Sabatisie chose the outside track of the herd, to take the wind—which, having followed about three miles, brought us to where the Cariboo had rested during the night. Tom placed his hand on the damp snow, and remarked that the Cariboo had not been up much before us, and could not be far off.

“Rifles were now examined, and fresh caps put on—Billy secured by a cord to Howard’s belt. The tracks from the resting-place of the Cariboo branched off in every direction; and the Indian leaving us, took a cast round, some distance, and having ascertained the direction the herd had taken, he returned, and we cautiously followed him. I now perceived that at the bottom of the tracks the snow was a deep blue, and quite soft; we were therefore quite near the game. Sabatisie halted and took off his snow-shoes that he might proceed with less noise. Howard beckoned me to him, and in a low whisper said—‘Do exactly as you see me do—follow close upon my track, and do not for your life make the slightest noise—we are close on them!’

“Sabatisie and Howard now slung their snow-shoes on their backs: to prevent the crackling of the crust, the Indian with his fingers broke the snow before him, and placing his foot in the hole he made, quietly advanced—Howard putting his in the track the Indian had left, I mine in Howard’s. By this means we proceeded without the slightest noise; and as our movements were simultaneous, we should to a person in front appear as one body. Our situations were certainly any thing but agreeable, up to the waist in snow. The trail became every moment more fresh, and the eagle eye of our sagacious guide pried far into the depths of the forest in front. Suddenly he cast himself at full length on the snow, and remained so long in that position that I innocently thrust my head out of the line to see what was the matter; but the Indian glared at me with anger and contempt, and Howard’s sign recalled my senses. In front, the wood being quite open, Sabatisie had seen the Cariboo, and now made for a large pine to shelter his approach. His movements, as he dragged himself along on his belly in the snow, were snake-like; and we followed, endeavoring as far as possible to imitate his very interesting contortions. At last I caught sight of the game. They were a large herd of 18 or 20—some rubbing the bark from the branches—others performing their morning toilet, licking their dark-brown, glossy jackets, and combing them with their noble antlers. All appeared unconscious of the approach of their most deadly foes, save one noble bull, the leader of the herd. He seemed suspicious—with head erect, eyes darting in every direction, ears wagging to and fro, and nostril expanded, he snuffed the breeze. Upon this splendid creature the Indian kept his eye, never venturing to move save when the head of the Cariboo was turned away. Inch by inch we approached the tree. Oh! the agony of suspense I suffered in those few minutes!

“At length we reached our shelter. No time was lost. Howard signed to me to single out a Cariboo, while he took the noble leader, which was about 100 yards distant—the Indian reserving his fire. We stationed ourselves each side of the tree, and our rifles exploded almost at the same moment. Springing up to see the effect of my shot, I was pulled down by the Indian; what was my astonishment to see the bull Howard had fired at, stamping the snow, and gazing around, with fire and rage in his eye, in search of his hidden enemy. As I looked at his formidable antlers, his majestic height, and great strength—a thought of our helpless situation crossed my mind. The Indian now rested his gun quietly on the tree, and took a long, steady aim—the cap alone exploded with a sharp crack! Quick as lightning the bull discovered our ambush, and with a loud snort made directly for us. Defense or retreat against such a foe, in our situation, up to the waist in snow, was almost impossible. In another bound the antlers of the enraged beast would have been in my side, when our gallant little dog dashed forward and seized the bull by the muzzle. Sabatisie and Howard were busily employed putting on their snow-shoes; and I endeavored to do the same, but with little success. The dog had luckily checked the beast, but he was no match for the enormous strength and wonderful activity of his adversary. Tossing his head, the Cariboo beat the poor little fellow on the snow and against the tree, till I thought every bone was broken. Finding this of no avail, the bull reared, and with his fore-legs dealt such a shower of quick and powerful blows, that I expected to see the dog drop every minute. While the Cariboo was in this position, the Indian approached him behind and endeavored to hamstring him. But the eye of the bull was too quick; wheeling like lightning, he made a rush at Sabatisie, which must have been serious, but was avoided by his falling flat on his face, the Cariboo passing over him and wounding his back. Meanwhile Howard had loaded, but his rifle having become wet, he could not discharge it. The violent exertions of the Cariboo had by this time broke the hold of the dog, and the furious beast now turned to the prostrate Indian—but before he could reach his prey, the dog was again at his head, checking, but not stopping his mad career. Sabatisie on his knee received the shock, and at the moment grasping the bull by the antlers, brought him down; when Howard sprang forward and plunged his knife to the hilt in the breast of the Cariboo. With a last mighty effort, the noble creature dashed the Indian in the air, and the next moment his own strong limbs were quivering in death.

“From the commencement of this burst, I confess, I was a little agitated—so much so, that I had not coolness sufficient to tie on my snow-shoes, or load my rifle; but let not any blame me until they themselves have had the pleasure of being placed in the same delicate situation, up to the waist in snow, and one of those emperors of the deer tribe dancing round in mad fury, threatening instant annihilation. On examination, we found Howard’s ball had taken effect just behind the shoulder, and would have caused death in a short time.

“ ‘Hillo! old boy, are you hurt?’ said Tom Howard, seeing the Indian still on his back.

“ ‘Cariboo sartain bery strong,’ grunted the poor fellow. His back was much lacerated. ‘Brother cut some gum, and soon be well,’ said Sabatisie.

“Howard gathered some balsam formed by the sap running from the bark of the fir-tree, and spreading it on a piece of his handkerchief, formed a strong adhesive plaster—staunching the blood, he placed it on the wound.

“ ‘And now, Meadows, what has become of your game—think he is hit?’

“ ‘Yes, by Jove, I’ll bet my rifle to a pop-gun he is—for see, Billy has settled down on his track, and is in chase.’

“ ‘On with your snow-shoes, and away!—the track with the blood will be plain as a van wagon—if you come up with the Cariboo, do not fire unless you are sure to kill. I must stop and see if the Indian is much hurt, and swab out my rifle—but I will soon overtake you—away now!’

“So urged, I started off, and found large drops of blood on the track the prime little dog had taken. As I proceeded, I saw the strides of the Cariboo were shorter, and he had been down several times. As I pressed on, in great hopes of overtaking the game before Howard came up, I observed the Cariboo had made for the valley, and after a sharp walk of an hour, I came to the stream, which was open. Here I lost the track, but saw the marks of the dog down the stream—these I followed, and soon heard the baying of the dog. As I proceeded, the river was every moment more rapid. After a sharp turn the stream was compressed between two huge cliffs, and rushed down a water-gap, forming a cascade of nearly one hundred feet. To the very verge of the fall the river was open; but over the fall itself there was a thin coating of transparent ice, which clung to the perpendicular cliffs on each side of the narrow gap, forming a gauze-like veil. The towering cliffs around were covered with a frosting of ice; and from the stunted pines which clung to the barren rock, hung myriads of fantastic icicles. At the foot of the fall, the blue water rushed out, dashing the white foam many feet in the air; and through the thick woods which overhung the cascade, the sun cast his rays upon the gorgeous prospect, making every object throw forth a thousand brilliant shades, and the glittering ice which encircled the fall was so transparent, that the blue water could be seen beneath dashing furiously down, as if enraged at restraint. Not ten feet from the verge of the fall, on a rock in the centre of the river, stood the wounded Cariboo. The water around him was fearfully rapid—one false step would carry him under the ice, and down the fall. On the bank stood the dog: my first care was to secure him, as he appeared ready every instant to make a spring that must have been fatal. The Cariboo had chosen a most admirable place of retreat; nothing living could approach him with safety. On each side the perpendicular cliffs towered many feet over his head—before him the roaring torrent, and behind the ice-bound cataract. After feasting my eyes on this wild and romantic scene, I approached as near the fall as the rugged cliff would permit. The Cariboo saw me, and with glaring eye-balls he shook his branching antlers in impotent rage, presenting to my rifle his broad front, as in defiance. I am not ashamed to say I was happy when I glanced at the rapid water and rugged cliff between me and my devoted prey; for I have no doubt, had it been in his power he would have soon shortened the distance between us—and after what I had so lately witnessed, I had no very great desire (seeing I was not as yet a perfect harlequin on snow-shoes,) to play the same game over again with my friend on the rock. To put an end to his wishes and my fears, I presented. My ball took effect directly in his brain, and he quietly dropped into the stream, leaving me master of the field. The next moment I could see, through the transparent ice, his glossy hide gliding down the cascade.”

Amiable reader, thus it was that “Meadows” slew his first Cariboo; and thus, pray for me, that I may kill mine, this very month. If I do, believe me, I will try to tell you how I did it, as well—better I may not tell you—as Meadows. And so, until next month, fare you well!


Do we not all, sometimes, desire to look into the future, but is it not well for us, that it is hidden from our view? S. D. S.


Couldst thou have looked beyond the mist that veiled

  The unseen Future from thy longing sight,

Would not thy courage in that hour have failed,

  To see the shadows of Death’s coming night?


Wouldst thou have grieved that nevermore for thee

  Would the clear waters gush, the sweet flowers bloom?

That more than one fond heart would homeless be,

  When thou wert gone in silence to the tomb?


What didst dream of? when the rose-lip smiled,

  And bade thee welcome to the social hearth,

Where voices low and sweet the hours beguiled—

  Were they not dear, those fireside hours of mirth?


What didst thou hope for? with thy kindling eye,

  And thoughtful brow, that wore the laurels well;

As thou wert climbing to the temple high,

  Not hearing on the winds the passing knell!


Till ah! one morn, thy throbbing heart grew chill,

  And from thy pale lip faintly came the breath;

We saw thee slumbering beautiful and still,

  And knew it was the dreamless sleep of death!


Through the “dark valley,” and the “shadows” dim,

  Thy Father’s “rod and staff” did comfort thee!

Meekly didst thou repose thy trust in Him,

  And launch thy frail bark on Eternity!


Could some bright spirit, from a distant sphere,

  Bend down to listen to our feeble wail,

To our vain longings with a pitying ear,

  And for one moment raise the mystic veil!


That we might see, though rocking on the tide,

  If our frail barks would gain the port at last;

If sailing on Life’s ocean far and wide

  We’d gain the haven when the storm was past.


Oh! looking backward on our dreary way—

  Recalling all our dreams of love and truth,

And the “green spots” wherein we might not stay,

  Far back upon the “fairy isle” of Youth—


And thinking of the hours of grief and pain,

  Of all the bitter tears that we have shed,

That only ceased awhile, to flow again,

  Above the loved, the beautiful, the dead!


Would we not close our eyes, nor dare the sight?

  The many blighted hopes, the cares, the fears—

The fond eyes closed, that round us shed their light,

  The clouds that hang above our coming years?


Would not a fearful shriek then pierce the sky,

  Sent up by thousands from this erring world

Would they not then for pardon wildly cry,

  Ere in the whirlpool of Destruction hurled?


’Tis “hidden from our view,” and it is well!

  But traveling through this vale of sin and strife,

Should not thy memory be to us a spell,

  Thy pure and holy thoughts, thy blameless life?


They who above thy grave so sadly wept

  Shall change as other years roll swiftly by—

And look upon the tokens they have kept,

  Scarce yielding thee the tribute of a sigh.


Oh what is Life? We live a few short hours.

  Eternal joy or pain hang on a breath;

We pass from earth, as fade the summer flowers,

  Wither and die away—and this is Death!



The idea of creation may be symbolically represented under a variety of images: under that of the evolution of numbers from an original unity; that of the eradiation of light from an original light; or that of an expression of syllables and tones, answered for aught we know to the contrary, by an echo. The Hebrews seem to have preferred this last symbol. “In the beginning God created (Heb. BARA, brought forth) the heavens and the earth.” In the verb bara, the meaning create and cry are identified: for this reason, it is eminently adapted to denote a creation capable of being symbolically represented by a vocal utterance.

“The primary sense of create and cry”—says Noah Webster, and we are careful to adduce in this place the testimony of a man whom no one will suppose to have been led astray by ontological speculations—“is the same, to throw, to drive out, to bring forth, precisely as in the Shemitic BARA.” The Hebrew text may indeed be correctly but inadequately rendered: “In the beginning God bore (or bare, preserving in the English word the radical letters of the original BARA) the heavens and the earth.” For the same lexicographer says in another place, “The verb to bear, I suppose to be radically the same as the Shemitic BARA, to produce: the primary sense is, to throw out, to bring forth, to thrust, to drive along.”

The author of the epistle to the Hebrews says: “By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” These things which do not appear are real existences; for the apostle says, “the things which are seen are temporal, but the things that are unseen (that is, which do not appear,) are eternal.” The text therefore does not affirm that the worlds were made out of nothing, but implies, on the contrary, that they were framed out of invisible (that is, virtual or potential) things. Plato says: “Let us lay down two classes of being, the seen and the unseen; the unseen, eternal in their relations; the seen, never the same but ever changing.”

A cause which creates from nothing as material on which to operate, must of necessity itself stand as substance to its own creature: in such a case, the creator and the creature must be consubstantial. The dogma therefore that the worlds are created absolutely out of nothing, is Pantheism. The statement that the worlds are created out of nothing is not found in Scripture, neither is it possible that it should be found there; for the idea is absurd in itself, since out of nothing, nothing can come, and a universe absolutely created out of nothing would be a mere prolongation of Supreme Power; and moreover, there is no Hebrew word, nor known collocation of Hebrew words, capable of expressing such an absolute creation. The verb BARA, as we have seen, signifies something quite different.

Fabre d’Olivet, who has endeavored to reconstruct the Hebrew language from its biliteral roots, translates the passage, “The earth was without form and void (Heb. tho-hu va bo-hu)” as follows: “The earth was a contingent potentiality of being, and in a potentiality of being.” He affirms that the term hu is derived from hua (being, that which is,) and that it is formed of h, the letter of life, taken in connection with one of the signs of manifestation. The signs of manifestation are these, i, o, u, and are used in this way: u represents latent or virtual manifestation, i represents the passage from potentiality into actuality, o represents manifestation in its intensity and actual realization. Thus hu, in tho-hu va bo-hu, is latent or virtual being, while ho, in Jehovah, is Being in the fullness of actual existence. The blinding of the vowel in ho, which gives hu, represents the retrocession of being from the fullness of actuality into mere invisibility or potentiality; while on the contrary, the opening of the vowel in hu, that is, the changing of hu into ho, represents the opposite process, or the procession of being from potentiality into actuality. This same root appears again in the same verse in the word thehom, translated in our version by the term “deep.”

The Hebrew cosmogony is more scientific than that of India. The Hindoos tell us that the universe exists in two states, that it is sometimes visible and sometimes invisible; but they do not tell us by what process things come forth from the thehom or “deep,” and return again into the same. But in the Hebrew cosmogony all that is explained. According to the Hebrews, things are in this “deep” when they are not related to each other; and they come forth from this “deep” by coming into relations with each other. According to the Hebrews, things have no power in themselves to come into relations with each other, that is, to emerge from this “deep,” but must be brought into such relations by the Divine Energy: so it is the putting forth of the Divine Energy which causes this universe to appear, and the withdrawing of that Energy which causes it to disappear again. This may be illustrated. In order to the possibility of an act of vision, it is necessary not only that there should be some person capable of seeing and some object capable of being seen, but also that the light requisite in order that these two may be brought into relations should exist. Who can see in the dark? So long as there is no light, the seer and the seen exist to each other potentially only: but as soon as the light shines these two become related.

In the Hebrew Scriptures, the Divine Powers, which bring finite existences into relations with each other, thus causing them to emerge from the thehom, or “deep,” are called—the Spirit of God. “Darkness was on the face of the deep, and the Spirit of God moved on the face of the waters.” This Divine Spirit, operating upon man in its ordinary measure, makes man to be what he is; operating beyond its ordinary measure, it becomes especial inspiration. The Hebrews supposed this universe would continue in visible existence so long as the Spirit of God should breath upon it, but that it would fall back into the the-hom the moment that spirit should withdraw its vivifying power.

We read in the speech of Elihu, reported in the book of Job:—

“There is a spirit in man:

And the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding. . . .

The Spirit of God hath made me,

And the breath of the Almighty hath given me life. . . .

Who hath given unto God a charge over the earth?

Or who hath disposed the whole world?

If He set his heart upon man—

If He gather unto Himself his Spirit and his breath;

All flesh shall perish together.

And man shall turn again unto dust.

Also in the 104th Psalm:

“Thy creatures wait all upon thee;

That thou mayest give them their meat in due season.

That thou givest them, they gather:

Thou openest thine hand—they are filled with good.

Thou hidest thy face—they are troubled:

Thou takest away their breath—they die and return to their dust.

Thou sendest forth thy Spirit—they are (re-) created:

And thou renewest the face of the earth.

Inspiration, therefore, does not consist in an intensification of the soul’s being, in the implanting of a new principle, or springing source in the centre of its substance, but it consists in a leading forth of the soul to a greater intensity of manifestation—to a greater distance from the original chaos, the-hom, or “deep.”



Draw the curtains, stir the fire, make a semicircle round the rug, and now for a causerie. Mary Russell Mitford shall talk to us out of the three volumes of reminiscences she has just given to the world; and whatever we have to say about the sundry things she discourseth upon therein shall be said in a cordial, and, at the same time, perfectly frank spirit, as becometh an honest fireside.

There she sits in the large chair, not quite so young as she was when she charmed all homesteads and hearth-stones with pictures of her own quiet Berkshire village, before railroads came to destroy the pretty wayside inns, where travelers used to be so snug and comfortable in tiny carpeted rooms with dimity curtains and glass cupboards full of antediluvian china: when little Red-riding-hoods were as plenty as blackberries, and the gipsies were never at a loss for secluded nooks and dells, where they could camp and cook, and tell stories under the hedge-rows, with a feeling of solitude and security they can never enjoy again in merry England. That was a long, long time ago; yet Mary Russell Mitford looks as ready as she was in her brightest days to enter with a relishing zest into the garden delights and book pleasures that have formed the occupation and happiness of her life, and made her name known and welcome wherever natural description and unaffected feeling are truly appreciated.

There she sits, with as homely and good-humored an air as if, instead of writing books and holding correspondence with half the celebrities of her time, she had no other vocation in this world than to attend to domestic affairs, prune shrubs on the lawn, dispense flannels at Christmas to the poor, and look after a neighboring school. Beside her chair stands her constant companion, a remarkable stick, with an odd sort of a head to it; and to make her actual presence the more palpable she should be surrounded by her inseparable friends—Fanchon, her little dog, that might be crouched at her feet, with its sensitive ears lifting and falling at every sound; her neat maid, Nancy, watching her on a low stool, and her boy, Henry—(we hope he is still a boy,) and that he will contrive, for her sake, to continue so—standing behind her chair.

That stick has a biography all to itself, and a very curious one it is. Sixty years ago it was a stick of quality, and belonged to some Dowager Duchess of Athol, who has no more reality for us than one of the embroidered ladies in an old piece of tapestry. So far as its original owner is concerned, the stick, for aught we know to the contrary, may be a phantom-stick, or a witch-stick; but, be that as it may, Miss Mitford’s father bought it at the sale of Berkshire House, where it was huddled by the auctioneer into a lot of old umbrellas, watering-pots, and flower-stands. It was then light, straight, and slender, nearly four feet high, polished, veined, and of a yellowish color, and of the order called a crook, such, says Miss Mitford, who is evidently very particular about it, as may be seen upon a chimney-piece figuring in the hand of some trim shepherdess of Dresden china. First, the housekeeper carried this stick—then, when the housekeeper died, Miss Mitford’s mother took possession of it; and from her it descended to Miss Mitford, herself, who, first out of whim, and afterward from habit and necessity, made it her trusty supporter on all occasions. The adventures of that stick are as full of perils and hair-breadth escapes as ever befell a South Sea whaler, or a Hudson’s bay trapper. Once it was lost in a fair, once forgotten in a marquee at a cricket match, and at another time stolen by a little boy, which cost its mistress a ten miles walk for its recovery. But the worst calamity that befell it was, when in the act of drawing down a rich branch of woodbine from the top of a hedge, its ivory crook came off, falling into a muddy ditch, and sinking so irretrievably that it was never recovered. The crook, it seems, was very handsome, and was bound with a silver rim, imparting a lady-like appearance to the stick, which at the first sight, gave you a hint of its aristocratic origin. In this extremity it was sent to a parasol shop to have a new crook put on, but the stupid people first docked many inches of its height, and then put on a bone umbrella-top, that fell off of its own accord in a few days. A good-natured friend remedied the second loss by fastening on an ebony top, which looks, after four or five years’ wear, a little graver, “and more fit for the poor old mistress, who having at first taken to a staff in sport, is now so lame as to be unable to walk without one.” The memoirs of a walking-stick may strike our readers as a mere waste of words and paper; but it is surprising what slight incidents rise into importance and interest in a country life, and how much the reality of its portraiture is indebted to trivial, but by no means unessential features. At all events, Miss Mitford’s stick is a stick of note, and should no more be passed over in silence than the ruff of Queen Elizabeth, or the flowing ringlets of Congreve.

Miss Mitford’s life seems to have opened upon her in that page of the old quarto edition of “Percy’s Reliques,” where the ballad of the “Children in the Wood” is to be found. It is the first book, almost the first event she remembers. They used to put her upon a table before she was three years old, when she was, as she says, only a sort of twin-sister to her own doll, to make her read leading articles out of the morning papers; and the reward for this terrible penance was to hear her mother recite the “Children in the Wood,” just as children are rewarded for taking nauseous things by a promise of a lump of sugar. At last, she got possession of the volumes themselves, and made acquaintance with the rest of the ballads, which possess as great a charm for her now as they did then; and she never looks upon the old books—the very same edition Dr. Johnson used to treat with a very learned and unwise superciliousness—that the days of her childhood, or doll-hood, do not come vividly back upon her.

She still keeps to the Percy collection. She does not seem to care about the lore that has been dug up since, or the antiquarian research that has come to the illustration of our old English poetry. Even the first edition contents her—she will have no other—she has an affection for it—it is enough for her purpose—it recalls the happy time when its pages disclosed a new world of enchantments to her—and she holds it in reverence amongst her literary penates. There is nothing in her reminiscences to show that she troubles herself about Percy societies, or Shakspeare societies, that she has ever dipped into Notes and Queries, or would think herself obliged to the officious critic who should detect a flaw in her two precious quarto volumes. The faith and the enthusiasm of childhood still cling to the well-known book, and would be very much put out by being disturbed at their devotions. And this is the character of Miss Mitford’s mind. She would rather believe in an old tradition than have it dispelled by the detective police that go about exploring chronicles and ferreting out damaging facts. She thinks a pleasant delusion better than a disagreeable truth; and it is to this fondness for old books, and old places, and the old stories that have grown up into a popular creed about them, that we may trace the paramount charm of simplicity and trustfulness, the cheerful spirit and the teeming good-nature which abound in her writings.

To us, we must acknowledge, this freshness of the heart and entire freedom of the imagination, is very delightful. Miss Mitford is not a critic; but she is something a great deal better and more agreeable. She is of too enjoyable a temperament for a critic; she has not a tinge of the malice or perversity of criticism in her genial nature. For this reason, her opinions are sometimes slightly heterodox, but it is always on the side of a good-will, and a hearty admiration of some gracious or gentle quality which she has been at the pains to discover, and which few people would take the trouble to look for. She speaks rapturously of Davis’ “Life of Curran;” has such innocent rural views of literature, that she thinks nobody reads Pope and Dryden now, and that George Darley is unknown as a poet to the English public; detects a close resemblance between the Irish novels of Banim and the romanticist creations of Victor Hugo, Sue, Dumas, and the rest of that school; thinks that few works are better worth reading than Moncton Milnes’ “Life of Keats,” not only for the sake of Keats, but of his “generous benefactors, Sir James Clarke and Mr. Severn;” regrets that certain works have fallen into oblivion, from which no effort of fashionable or literary patronage can redeem them; considers Willis, Lowell and Poe the great American poets; and hopes that Richardson’s novels and Walpole’s letters will never come to an end. Nobody’s judgment can suffer any damage from such amiable notions; and the world is always sure to derive benefit from the kindly spirit that overlooks a hundred defects and follies for the sake of a single virtue it finds hidden beneath them. We wish there were more Miss Mitfords, with her intellect, to set us so influential an example of toleration and a willingness to be pleased.

She confesses that she was a spoilt child, and that papa spoilt her. It is evident, from what we have just said, that sudden and high as was the growth of her reputation, the public have not spoilt her. What the applause of critics and the admiration of her readers failed to do, papa did. “Not content with spoiling me in-doors, he spoilt me out. How well I remember his carrying me round the orchard on his shoulder, holding fast my little three-year-old feet, whilst the little hands hung on to his pig-tail, which I called my bridle—those were days of pig-tails—hung so fast, and lugged so heartily, that sometimes the ribbon would come off between my fingers, and send his hair floating, and the powder flying down his back.” The papa who thus made her first acquainted with the orchard, occupies a still more prominent space in her subsequent reminiscences. From him to whom she was indebted for her early love of nature, and the happy hours of childhood, she also derived the heaviest sorrow of her life. The story is strange and melancholy.

A young physician, clever, handsome, gay, in a small town in Hampshire, Miss Mitford’s father won the hand of an heiress with a property of eight-and-twenty thousand pounds. With the exception of two hundred a year, settled on her as pin-money, the whole of this fortune was injudiciously placed at the free use of Dr. Mitford, who seems to have possessed every quality to make his wife happy—except prudence. Being an eager Whig, he plunged into election politics and made enemies; being very hospitable, he spent more money than he could afford; and, endeavoring to retrieve the waste by cards and speculation, he sank nearly the whole of his resources. In this extremity, he thought he would do better in a fresh place, and so the family removed to Lyme Regis, where they had a fine house, which twenty years before had been rented by the great Lord Chatham for the use of his sons. Here they led a very gay life for two or three seasons—balls, excursions, dinners; yet in the midst of it, Miss Mitford says, she felt a secret conviction that something was wrong—“such a foreshowing as makes the quicksilver in the barometer sink while the weather is still bright and clear.” Her father went ominously to London, and lost more money—she does not say how—all was now gone except the pin-money: friends departed one by one, and there was great hurry and confusion, and then everything was to be parted with, and everybody to be paid, and the family made a forced journey to London, part of which was performed in a tilted cart without springs, for lack of better conveyance.

Settled in a dingy, comfortless lodging in one of the suburbs beyond Westminster Bridge, Dr. Mitford’s constitutional vivacity returned. He used to take his little girl, then ten years old, in his hand about town to show her the sights; and one day they stopped at an Irish lottery-office, and showing her certain mysterious bits of paper with numbers on them, he desired her to choose one. She selected No. 2,224; but as this was only a quarter, and papa wanted to purchase a whole ticket, he desired her to choose again. But her heart was set on No. 2,224, because the numbers added together made up ten, and that day happened to be her tenth birth-day. Fortunately, the lottery-office man had the whole number in shares, and so the ticket was bought. She must relate the sequel in her own words.

“The whole affair was a secret between us, and my father, whenever he got me to himself, talked over our future twenty thousand pounds, just like Almaschar over his basket of eggs.

“Meanwhile time passed on, and one Sunday morning we were all preparing to go to church, when a face that I had forgotten, but my father had not, made its appearance. It was the clerk of the lottery-office. An express had just arrived from Dublin, announcing that No. 2,224 had drawn a prize of twenty thousand pounds, and he had hastened to communicate the good news.

“Ah, me! in less than twenty years what was left of the produce of the ticket so strangely chosen? What? except the Wedgwood dinner service that my father had had made to commemorate the event, with the Irish harp within the border on one side, and his family crest on the other. That fragile and perishable ware long outlasted the more perishable money!”

Miss Mitford relates these painful recollections with a serenity and patience that yield a lesson from which her readers may profit as largely as from the example of extravagance and recklessness which made so severe a demand on her feelings and her philosophy; and it is pleasant, after all her vicissitudes and jolting over the rough ways of the world, to find her in a tranquil cottage, in the midst of the scenery she loves, with her dog and her maid, her stick and her pony, enjoying as much felicity as can be reasonably looked for in the sunset of a chequered life.

Scattered over the volumes without much heed of chronology or sequence, are many little personal scraps that will hereafter enter into her biography, from the light which they throw upon the cast and color of her training. The papa, who was so indifferent to money, who was addicted to such ruinous habits, and who in his general relations with society, seems to have sacrificed the comfort and repose of his home, was, nevertheless, the most devoted of fathers. From her earliest childhood to the last hour of his life, he treated her with an affectionate and caressing tenderness that, in spite of his manifest errors, leaves an amiable impression of his character behind. One of the incidents on which she dwells with the greatest satisfaction was her first visit to London; and the mode of it is not only illustrative of the comparatively primitive habits of the time, but of the simplicity of the man in his domestic life. Having occasion to come to London in the middle of July, he suddenly announced his intention of taking her up with him in his gig; and at this open fashion they started, stopping to dine at Crauford Bridge in a little inn—then a very famous posting-house—whose pretty garden and Portugal laurels she still remembers; and then on to Hatchett’s Hotel in Piccadilly, where she stood looking out of the window and wondering when the crowd would go by; and in the evening she was so unconscious of fatigue from this exciting journey that papa took her to the Haymarket to see a comedy—one of the comedies, she says, that George III. used to enjoy so heartily, although what sort of comedy it was we know not, unless, which we shrewdly suspect, it was a specimen of Colman the Younger, or of the Morton and Reynolds school. She had seen plays before in a barn—but never such a play as this. The whole description of this trip to London is as good in its way as anything Fielding himself could have done.

“Dear papa,” in the pride of his heart, insisted upon making an accomplished musician of her, and would “stick her up” to the piano, although she had neither ear, taste, nor application. Her master was Hook, the father of the facetious Theodore, and she was taught in the schoolroom where Miss Landon passed the greater part of her life. Luckily they shut her up in a room to make her practise the harp, and as it was full of books she fell to reading, and under these auspicious circumstances made her first acquaintance with the plays of Voltaire and Molière. She was caught in the fact of laughing till the tears ran down her cheeks over that passage in the “Bourgeois Gentilhomme,” where the angry father apostrophises the galley, “Que diable alloit-il faire dans cette galère!” As her good stars had it, she was detected in her delinquency by the husband of the schoolmistress, who happened to be a Frenchman, an adorer of Molière, and a hater of music, and who, instead of chiding her for her neglect of the instrument, dismissed the harp-mistress, and made the young student a present of a cheap edition of Molière, for her own reading, which she has to this hour, in twelve unbound, foreign-looking, little volumes.

After these scenes, we find her in a cottage, at Taplow—at this time a grown-up lady—looking over a garden of honeysuckles, lilies, and roses, making excursions to Windsor, to Gray’s Lawn at Stoke Poges, to Burke’s at Beaconsfield, and to the College at Chalfont, where Milton found a refuge during the plague. We always associate Miss Mitford with cottages. We cannot imagine her living in a slated house, three stories high, with a carriage sweep, and steps up to the door—we cannot suffer her in our imagination to have any of the comforts and solidity of a well-built mansion about her; it must be a cottage, with its ivy creepers, its portico and latticed windows, and everything round it looking as green and rural as a wilderness of trees and shrubs, growing up luxuriantly in a warm, languid climate can make it. In short, we must smother her in flowers, or she is not the Miss Mitford that we know so well in the pastoral books she has written.

Turning from the autobiographical passages which form so interesting a part of these volumes, there are a variety of literary sketches of an equally attractive kind. Miss Mitford runs over a wide field of books and recollections; and from her extensive acquaintance with literary people, and the desultory character of her reading, she supplies an abundant store of anecdote and remark.

The following is new, and certainly very curious. The scene is an old, wooden, picturesque house, at Cambridge, in America, once the head quarters of Washington, but now the residence of Longfellow, the poet.

“One night the poet chanced to look out of his window, and saw by the vague starlight a figure riding slowly past the mansion. The face could not be distinguished; but the tall, erect person, the cocked hat, the traditional costume, the often-described white horse, all were present. Slowly he paced before the house, and then returned, and then again passed by, after which, neither horse nor rider were seen or heard of.”

Miss Mitford does not give us any authority for this anecdote; but the collectors of ghost stories are not very particular about authorities, and will be content to take it upon her own, as we do.

There is a sketch of Elizabeth Barrett, and a little biography attached to it, which will be read with interest. Miss Mitford’s acquaintance with her commenced fifteen years ago.

“Of a slight, delicate figure, with a shower of dark curls falling on either side of a most expressive face large, tender eyes richly fringed by dark eye-lashes, a smile like a sunbeam, and such a look of youthfulness, that I had some difficulty in persuading a friend, in whose carriage we went together to Chiswick, that the translator of the ‘Prometheus of Æschylus,’ the authoress of the ‘Essay on Mind,’ was old enough to be introduced into company, or, in technical language, was out.”

It was in the following year that Miss Barrett broke a blood-vessel in the lungs, which consigned her to a long illness, during which she lost a favorite brother by one of those melancholy accidents which leave ineffaceable memories in the hearts of the survivors. He was drowned, with two companions, in sight of her windows at Torquay, whither she was ordered for change of air. This tragedy nearly killed her; and more than a year afterward, when she was removed to London by easy journeys, she told Miss Mitford that, “during that whole winter, the sound of the waves rang in her ears like the moans of one dying.”

William Cobbett was one of the notabilities to whom Miss Mitford was introduced by her father, whose intimacy with him was brought about through their mutual attachment to field sports. She describes him in his own house as a man of unfailing good humor and great heartiness; tall, stout and athletic, with a bright smile, and an air compounded of the soldier and the farmer, to which his habitual red waistcoat contributed not a little. His activity was something to be remembered, for he would begin the day by mowing his own lawn, a laborious pastime in which he beat his gardener, who was esteemed, except himself, the best mower in the parish.

Upon one occasion, Dr. Mitford and his daughter were invited to Cobbett’s to meet the wife and daughters of a certain Dr. Blamire; and as it appeared that Dr. Mitford had formerly flirted with Mrs. Blamire, some amusement was expected from seeing how they would meet after a lapse of twenty years, both of them having shaken off the old liaison, and married in the meanwhile.

“The most diverting part of this scene, very amusing to a bystander, was, that my father, the only real culprit, was the only person who throughout maintained the appearance and demeanor of the most unconscious innocence. He complimented Mrs. Blamire on her daughters—two very fine girls—inquired after his old friend, the doctor, and laughed and talked over by-gone stories with the one lady, just as if he had not jilted her, and played the kind and attentive husband to the other, just as if he had never in all his days made love to anybody except his own dear wife.”

Formerly, we frequently met with physicians who belonged to this class, and who were indebted for their professional success mainly to their social tactics and invincible pleasantry; but although you still occasionally fall in with a medical man who considers it as necessary to cultivate popularity amongst ladies as to attend to the practice of his art, the age of the flirt-physicians, we are happy to believe, has passed away.

Miss Mitford’s literary “recollections” bear rather more upon books than upon the authors of them. The book-gossip to which she invites us, traverses a considerable round of poets, novelists, and miscellaneous writers, and the specimens of their works over which she lingers with delight, make a body of extracts which enhance the value and variety of the publication. Her notes upon these selected passages discover a geniality and earnestness which will be grateful even to the reader who may sometimes have occasion to think that her praise is a little in excess, or who may doubt the judgment that has been shown in particular selections.

This tendency to a good-natured estimate of her favorite authors, shows itself most conspicuously in her admiration of certain poets, whose merits the world has not hitherto rated so highly. We are not sorry, nevertheless, to meet snatches of such people as Mr. Spencer and Miss Catharine Fanshawe—whose chief claim to notice is, that she was the author of the Enigma on the letter H, which used to be ascribed to Byron—for, except through the flattering medium of books like these, we are not very likely to see the vers de société that were in such request some fifty years ago, disinterred for our special delectation. They are abundantly curious, and discover a certain verbal facility and gayety of the thinnest and airiest kind, which will at least amuse, if not instruct the reader, by setting him thinking of the extinct modes and tastes to which they were addressed, and out of which they extracted their fugitive popularity. But poetasters of this order, however cheerfully and successfully they help to shed a grace on private life, and to give a sort of intellectual vivacity to social intercourse, can never be made to survive their hour in print. They must perish with the occasion that gave them birth; and you might as well hope to procure for the acted charade, if it were taken down in short-hand and published, the same success in the closet that it received on its impromptu delivery, as to procure for the graceful trifles thrown off for the amusement of a coterie, the honors of a permanent place in the library. They never aimed at such a destiny, and can never achieve it; and it may be doubted whether their fragile existence should be risked in print at all.

Of all the neglected, forgotten, or unknown books Miss Mitford has brought to life again, the Autobiography of Holcroft is the most deserving of resuscitation. We know no memoir of its kind—excepting the only one forbidden book in French literature—that possesses its charm of frankness, truthfulness of detail, and quiet development of character. Unfortunately it is nothing more than a fragment, consisting of seventeen chapters, dictated by Holcroft—a prolific author and translator—in his last illness; stopping short at an interesting point in his career, and furnishing such evidences of clear-sighted judgment, and happy skill in relation and portraiture, as to leave an indelible regret upon the mind of the reader at finding himself cast upon the grander diction of Hazlitt for the continuation of the narrative. The contrast is painful. The brilliancy and paradoxical genius of Hazlitt, rendered him of all men the most unfit to follow up the unpretending strength and simplicity of Holcroft; and the transition is something like being transported from the fresh air and pastoral beauty of a natural landscape into a severe Italian garden. There was but one point in common between them—and that was the most contracted and least characteristic of all—their agreement in politics. Holcroft was a man of larger powers, and a wider range of tastes than might be predicated from that party martyrdom which gave him so distressing a notoriety in the latter days of his life, to the partial eclipse of his literary reputation. But the subject is not likely to be revived now, nor would it repay the labors of a more competent editor. Miss Mitford, however, has done well in drawing attention to Holcroft’s book, and the extracts she has given from it will be read with interest; but it is only from the memoir itself, as a whole, tracing the course of the self-educated boy from his origin upward, that an adequate notion can be formed of the enthralling charm of that singular narrative.

We have exceeded our limits. A gossip, intended to occupy only five minutes or so, has already run over the brim of the measure which we proposed to fill up to the health of Miss Mitford. It is not the first time she has tempted us into an excess of this kind; but, if the reader will open her volumes over the fireside as we have done, we are mistaken if he do not find quite as much difficulty as we do now in shutting them up and putting them down again.

Recollections of a Literary Life; or Books, Places, and People. By Mary Russell Mitford, Author of “Our Village,” etc. 3 vols.





Loud blew the wind at the midnight hour,

  With many a wintry blast,

Which fairly shook old Rodenstine’s tower,

  As the Wild Black Huntsman passed.


The deer he sprang from his leafy bed,

  As he heard the piercing sounds,

And the oak boughs crashed to his antlered head,

  As he flew from the phantom hounds.


The rite of the holy monk was stayed,

  And he trembling dropped his beads,

As he heard the tramp through the forest glades

  And the neigh of the goblin steeds.


From the revellers hand the wine-cup fell,

  At the forester’s festive board;

And a sudden charm came o’er the spell

  Of the minstrels tuneful chord.


The old oak shook in its ancient hold,

  The abbey bell tolled to the blast;

And the cloud and the tempest onward rolled,

  As the Wild Black Huntsman passed.

J. Hayter                              W.H. Mote

Graham’s Magazine 1852



[with a steel plate.]




Oh love, love, love, love!—love is like a dizziness,

It will not let a poor man go about his business.

Old Song.

And are those follies going,

And is my proud heart growing

Too cold, or wise, for woman’s eyes

Again to set it glowing?


The General put on his spectacles, and looked steadfastly at Isabel for at least two minutes. “Turn your head,” he said, at last—“there, to the left.”

Isabel Montford, although an acknowledged beauty, was as amiable as she was admired; she had also a keen appreciation of character; and, though somewhat piqued, was amused by the oddity of her aunt’s old lover. The General was a fine example of the well-preserved person and manners of the past century; beauty always recognizes beauty as a distinguished relative; and Isabel turned her head, to render it as attractive as it could be.

The General smiled, and after gazing for another minute with evident pleasure, he said—“Do me the favor to keep that attitude, and walk across the room.”

Isabella did so with much dignity; she certainly was exceedingly handsome;—her step light, but firm; her figure, admirably poised; her head, well and gracefully placed; her features, finely formed; her eyes and smile, bright and confiding. She would have been more captivating had her dress been less studied; her taste was evidently Parisien rather than classic. The gentleman muttered something, in which the words, “charming,” and “to be regretted,” only met her ear; then he spoke distinctly:

“You solicited my candor, young lady—you challenged comparison between you and your compeers, and the passing belles whom I have seen. Now, be so kind as to walk out of the room, re-enter, and curtsey.”

Had Isabel Montford been an uneducated young lady, she might have flounced out of the salon, in obedience to her displeasure, which was very decided; but as it was, she drew herself to her full height, and swept through the folding-doors. The General took a very large pinch of snuff. “That is so perfectly a copy of her poor aunt!” he murmured;—“just so would she pass onward, like a ruffled swan; she went after that exact fashion into the ante-room, when she refused me, for the fourth time, thirty-five years ago.”

The young Isabel re-entered, and curtseyed. The gentleman seated himself, leaned his clasped hands upon the head of his beautiful inlaid cane—which he carried rather for show than use—and said, “Young lady, you look a divinity! Your tourneure is perfection; but your curtsey is frightful! A dip, a bob, a bend, a shuffle, a slide, a canter—neither dignified, graceful, nor self-possessed! A curtsey is in grace what an adagio is in music;—only masters of the art can execute either the one or the other. Why, the beauty of the Duchess of Devonshire could not have saved her reputation as a graceful woman, if she had dared such a curtsey as that.”

“I assure you, sir,” remonstrated the offended Isabel, “that Madame Micheau——”

“What do I care for the woman!” exclaimed the General, indignantly. “Have I not memory?”

“Can you not teach me?” said Isabel, amused and interested by his earnestness.

“I teach you!—I! No; the curtseys which captivated thousands in my youth were more an inspiration than an art. The very queen of ballet, in the present day, cannot curtsey.”

“Could my aunt?” inquired Isabel, a little saucily.

“Your aunt, Miss Montford, was grace itself. Ah! there are no such women now a-days!”

And, after the not very flattering observation, the General moved to the piano. Isabel’s brows contracted and her cheeks flushed; however, she glanced at the looking-glass, was comforted, and smiled. He raised the cover, placed the seat with the grave gallantry of an old courtier, and invited the young lady to play. She obeyed, to do her justice, with prompt politeness; she was not without hope that there, at least, the old gentleman would confess she was triumphant. Her white hands, gemmed with jewels, flew over the keys like winged seraphs; they bewildered the eye by the rapidity of their movements. The instrument thundered, but the thunder was so continuous that there was no echo! “The contrast will come by-and-by,” thought the disciple of the old school—“there must be some shadow to throw up the lights.”

Thunder—crash—thunder—crash—drum—rattle—a confused, though eloquent, running backward and forward of sounds, the rings flashing like lightning! Another crash—louder—a great deal of crossing hands—violent strides from one end of the instrument to the other—prodigious displays of strength on the part of the fair performer—a terrific shake! “What desperate exertion!” thought the General; “and all to produce a soulless noise.” Then followed a fearful banditti of octaves—another crash, louder and more prolonged than the rest; and she looked up with a triumphant smile—a smile conveying the same idea as the pause of an opera-dancer after a most wonderful pirouette.

“Do you keep a tuner in the house, my dear young lady?” inquired the General.

If a look could have annihilated, he would have crumbled into ashes; but he only returned it with admiration, thinking, “How astonishingly like her aunt, when she refused me the second time!”

“And that is fashionable music, Miss Montford? I have lived so long out of England, only hearing the music of Beethoven, and Mozart, and Mendelssohn, I was not aware that noise was substituted for power, and that execution had banished expression. Dear me!—why, the piano is vibrating at this moment! Poor thing! How long does a piano last you, Miss Montford?”

Isabel was losing her temper, when fortunately her aunt—still Miss Vere—came to the rescue. The lovers of thirty years past, would have met any where else as strangers. The once rounded and queen-like form of the elder Isabel was shorn of its grace and beauty; of all her attributes, of all her attractions, dignity only remained; and it was that high-bred, innate dignity which can never be acquired, and is never forgotten. She had not lost the eighth of an inch of her height, and her gray hair was braided in full folds over her fair but wrinkled brow. Isabel Montford looked so exactly what Isabel Vere had been, that General Gordon was sorely perplexed; Isabel Vere, if truth must be told, had taken extra pains with her dress; her niece had met the General the night before, and her likeness to her aunt had so recalled the past, that his promised visit to his old sweetheart (as he still called her) had fluttered and agitated her more than she thought it possible an interview with any man could do; she quarreled with her beautiful gray hair, she cast off her black velvet dress disdainfully, and put on a blue Moire antique. (She remembered how much the Captain—no, the General, once admired blue.) She was not a coquette; even gray hair at fifty-five does not cure coquetry where it has existed in all its strength; but, for the sake of her dear niece, she wished to look as well as possible. She wondered why she had so often refused “poor Gordon.” She had been all her life of too delicate a mind to be a husband-hunter, too well satisfied with her position to calculate how it could be improved, and yet, she did not hesitate to confess to herself that now, in the commencement of old age, however verdant it might be, she would have been happier, of more consequence, of more value, as a married woman. She had too much good sense, and good taste, to belong to the class of discontented females, consisting of husbandless and childless women, who seek to establish laws at war with the laws of the Almighty; so, if her heart did beat a little stiffly, and sundry passages passed through her brain in connection with her old adorer, and what the future might be—she may be forgiven, and will be, by those not strong-minded women who understand enough of the waywardness of human nature to know that, if young heads and old hearts are sometimes found together, so are young hearts and old heads. The young laugh to scorn the idea of Cupid and a crutch, but Cupid has strange vagaries, and at any moment can barb his crutch with the point of an arrow.

“The old people,” as Isabel Montford irreverently called them that evening, did not get on well together; they were in a great degree disappointed one with the other. They stood up to dance the minuet de la cour, and Isabel Vere languished and swam as she had never done before; but the General only wondered how stiff she had grown, and hoped that he was not as ill used by time as Mistress Isabel Vere had been. At first, Isabel Montford thought it “good fun” to see the antiquities bowing and curtseying, but she became interested in the lingering courtliness of the little scene, trembled lest her aunt should appear ridiculous, and then wondered how she could have refused such a man as General Gordon must have been.

Days and weeks flew fast; the General became a constant visitor in the square, and the heart of Isabel Vere had never beaten so loudly at twenty as it did at fifty-and-five; nothing, she thought, could be more natural than that the General should recall the days of his youth, and seek the friendship and companionship of her who had never married, while he—faithless man!—had been guilty of two wives during his “services in India.” It was impossible to tell which of the ladies he treated with the most attention. Isabel Montford took an especial delight in tormenting him, and he was cynical enough towards her at times. Although he frankly abused her piano-forte-playing, yet he evidently preferred it to the music Miss Vere practised so indefatigably to please him, or to the songs she sang, in a voice which from a high “soprano,” had been crushed by time into what might be considered a very singular “mezzo.” He somehow forgot how to find fault with Miss Montford’s dancing, and more than once became her partner in a quadrille. It was evident, that while the General was growing young, Miss Vere remained—“as she was!” Isabel Montford amused herself at his expense, but he did not—quick-sighted and man-of-the-world though he was—perceive it. At first he was remarkably fond of recalling and dating events, and dwelling upon the grace, and beauty, and interest, and advantage, of whatever was past and gone—much to the occasional pain of Isabel Vere, who, gentle-hearted as she was, would have consigned dates to the bottomless pit; latterly, however, he talked a good deal more of the present than of the past, and, greatly to the annoyance of younger men, fell into the duties of escort to both ladies,—accompanying them to places of public promenade and amusement.

On such occasions, Miss Isabel Vere looked either earnest or bashful—yes, positively bashful; and Miss Isabel Montford, brimful of as much mischief as a lady could delight in. At times, the General laid aside his cynical observations, together with his cane, which was not even replaced by an umbrella; to confess the truth, he had experienced several symptoms of heart disease, which, though they made him restless and uncomfortable, brought hopes and aspirations of life, rather than fears of death.

One morning, Isabel Montford and the General were alone in the salon where this little scene first opened:

“Our difference has never been settled yet,” she exclaimed, gaily; “you have never proved to me the superiority of the Old school over the New.”

“Simply because of your superiority to both,” he replied.

“I do not perceive the point of the answer,” said the young lady. “What has my superiority over both to do with the question?”

The General arose and shut the door. “Do you think you could listen to me seriously for five minutes?” he said.

“Listening is always serious work,” she answered. He took her hand within his; she felt it was the hand of age; the bones and sinews pressed on her soft palm with an earnest pressure.

“Isabel Montford—could you love an old man?”

She raised her eyes to his, and wondered at the light which filled them:—

“Yes,” she answered, “I could love an old man dearly; I could confide to him the dearest secret of my heart.”

“And your heart, your heart itself? Such things have been, sweet Isabel.” His hand was very hard, but she did not withdraw hers.

“No, not that, because—because I have not my heart to give.” She spoke rapidly, and with emotion. “I have it not to give, and I have so longed to tell you my secret! You have such influence with my aunt, you have been so affectionate, so like a father to me, that if you would only intercede with her, for HIM and me, I know she could not refuse. I have often——often thought of entreating this, and now it was so kind of you to ask, if I could love an old man, giving me the opportunity of showing that I do, by confiding in you, and asking your intercession.”

The room became misty to the General’s eyes, and the rattle of a battle-field sounded in his ears, and beat upon his heart.

“And pray, Miss Montford,” he said, after a pause, “who may him be?”

“Ah, you do not know him!—my aunt forbade the continuance of our acquaintance the day before I had the happiness to meet you. It was most fortunate I wooed you to call upon her, thinking—” (she looked up at his fine face, whose very wrinkles were aristocratic, and smiled her most bewitching smile) “thinking the presence of the only man she ever loved would soften her, and hoping that I should one day be privileged to address you as my friend, my uncle!” And she kissed his hand.—It really was hard to bear. “I have heard her say,” persisted the young lady, “that when prompted by evil counsel, she refused you, she loved you, and since your return she only lives in your presence.” The General wondered if this was true, and thought he would not give the young beauty a triumph. He was recovering his self-possession. “I remembered your admiration of passing belles, and felt how kindly you tolerated me, for my aunt’s sake; and surely you will aid me in a matter upon which my happiness, and the happiness of that poor dear fellow depends?” She bent her beautiful eyes on the ground.

“And who is the poor dear fellow?” inquired the General, in a singularly husky voice.

“Henry Mandeville,” half-whispered Isabel. “Oh, is it not a beautiful name? the initials on those lovely handkerchiefs you gave me will still do; I shall still be I. M.”

“A son of old Admiral Mandeville’s?”

“The youngest son,” she sighed, “that is my aunt’s objection; were he the eldest, she would have been too happy. Oh, sir, he is such a fine fellow—such a hero!—lost a leg at Cabool, and received I don’t know how many stabs from those horrid Affgauns.”

“Lost a leg!” repeated the General, with an approving glance at his own; “why he can never dance with you.”

“No, but he can admire my dancing, and does not think my curtsey a dip, a shuffle, a bend, a bob, a slide, a canter! Ah! dear General, I was always perfection in his eyes.”

“By the immortal duke,” thought the General, “the young divinity is laughing at me.”

“My aunt only objects to his want of money; now I have abundance for both; and your recommendation, dear sir, at the Horse Guards, would at once place him in some position of honor and of profit; and even if it were abroad, I could leave my dear aunt with the consciousness that her happiness is secured by you, dear, guardian angel that you are. Ah! sir, at your time of life you can have no idea of our feelings.”

“Oh yes, I have!” sighed the General.

“Bless you!” she exclaimed enthusiastically; “I thought you would recall the days of your youth and feel for us; and when you see my dear Harry”—

“With a cork leg”—

“Ay, or with two cork legs—you will I know be convinced that my happiness is as secure as your own.”

“Women are riddles, one and all!” said the General, “and I should have known that before.”

“Oh! do not say such cruel things and disappoint me, depending as I have been on your kindness and affection. Hark!” she continued, “I hear my aunt’s footstep: now dear, dear General, reason coolly with her—my very existence depends on it. If you only knew him! Promise, do promise, that you will use your influence, all-powerful as it is, to save my life.”

She raised her beautiful eyes, swimming in unshed tears, to his; she called him her uncle, her dear noble-hearted friend; she rested her snowy hand lovingly, imploringly on his shoulder, and even murmured a hope that, her aunt’s consent once gained, it might not be impossible to have the two weddings on the same day.

The General may have dreaded the banter of sundry members of the “Senior United Service Club,” who had already jested much at his devotion to the two Isabels; he may have felt a generous desire to make two young people happy, and his good sense doubtless suggested that sixty-five and seventeen bear a strong affinity to January and May; he certainly did himself honor, by adopting the interests of a brave young officer as his own, and avoided the banter of “the club,” by pledging his thrice-told vows to his “old love,” the same bright morning that his “new love” gave her heart and hand to Henry Mandeville.


The Works of Shakspeare: the Text Carefully Restored According to the First Editions; With Introductions, Notes, Original and Selected, and a Life of the Poet. By the Rev. H. N. Hudson, A. M. In Eleven Volumes. Boston: James Monroe & Co. Vol. 3.

This beautiful edition of Shakspeare, a fac-simile of the celebrated Chiswick edition in type and paper, has now reached its third volume. It is edited by Mr. Hudson, well known all over the country as one of the most accomplished of Shakspeare’s critics and commentators, and who in his present labors has far surpassed the reputation he obtained by his lectures on the same subject. The present volume contains The Merchant of Venice, As You Like It, All’s Well that Ends Well, and The Taming of the Shrew. The text is very carefully revised, and the notes are clear, short, and full of matter, and flash the meaning of obscure phrases, remote allusions, and other difficulties of the text, at once upon the reader’s mind, without any parade of learning or paradox of interpretation. It is, however, in the introductory notices to the plays that the analytical and interpretative genius of the editor shines forth most resplendently. Every lover of Shakspeare should possess this edition, had it nothing to recommend it but these alone. They give the results of meditations, alike penetrating and profound, on the interior processes of Shakspeare’s mind in creating character and in forming plots; and the marvel of his genius, in its depth, delicacy, comprehension, fertility, and sweetness, is developed with the austerity of science and the geniality of a sympathizing spirit. These introductions are not only thus critical, but they include in a short space a large amount of antiquarian knowledge respecting the bibliography and sources of the plays; and the old tales which suggested or formed the basis of the plots, are re-told with much skill and simplicity of narration.

The masterpiece of the present volume is the introduction to The Merchant of Venice. It is exceedingly brilliant in style, but the brilliancy seems to come from an inward heat and fervor generated by an intense contemplation of the subject, so that the diction sparkles, as Ben Jonson would say, “like salt in fire.” The brilliancies are flashes, not of fancy, but of thought; and frequently are the result of vigorous condensation in statement, or of logic which gets on fire by the very rapidity of its movement. The finest elements of the style, however, are its subtleties of statement and representation, subtleties which follow the most intricate windings and enfoldings of complex thought, speeding on the fire track of an ideal allusion to the very limits of its course, and thoroughly mastering all the obstacles of expression in giving form to the most evanescent workings of the creative power.

Thus in speaking of the apparent heterogeneousness but real unity of the play, he remarks: “The persons naturally fall into three several groups, with each its several plot and action; yet the three are most skillfully complotted, each standing out clear and distinct in its place, yet concurring with the others in dramatic unity, so that every thing helps on every other thing, without either the slightest confusion or the slightest appearance of care to avoid it. Of these three groups it is hardly necessary to add that Antonio, Shylock and Portia are the respective centres; while the part of Lorenzo and Jessica, though strictly an episode, seems, nevertheless, to grow forth as an element of the original germ, a sort of inherent superfluity, and as such essential, not indeed to the being, but to the well-being of the work; in short, a fine romantic undertone accompaniment to the other parts, yet contemplated and provided for in the whole plan and structure of the piece; itself in harmony with all the rest, and therefore perfecting their harmony with one another.” We will put it to the consciousness of every reader of Shakspeare if this does not chime with his feeling of the matter; but to show the grounds of this instinctive taste, and exhibit it in its intellectual form, and justify it by the austerest principles of philosophical criticism, requires Mr. Hudson’s sharpness of eye and ready refinements of expression. The specimen we have given, as it is not the best which might be selected, so is it a very common and unobtrusive characteristic of his criticism.

In commenting on the characters of the play, Mr. Hudson displays more than ordinary keenness and discrimination. We are acquainted with no student of Shakspeare who could read the analysis of Shylock, Antonio, Portia and Jessica, without receiving an addition to his knowledge. Even Launcelot Gobbo has his share of the critic’s acumen; his necessity, in the organism of the piece, is demonstrated; and the exquisite non-sequiturism of his whole personality is finely described. “A mixture, indeed, of conceit and drollery, and hugely wrapped up in self, yet he is by no means a commonplace buffoon, but stands firm and secure in the sufficiency of his original stock. His elaborate nonsense, his grasping at a pun without catching it, yet feeling just as grand as if he did, is both ludicrous and natural; his jokes, to be sure, are mostly failures; nevertheless they are laughable, because he dreams not but that they succeed.”

It is needless to say that the prominent feature in Mr. Hudson’s criticism is Shylock. The combination in him of the individual and the national, Shylock the Jew and the Jew Shylock, is indicated with a bold, firm hand. One paragraph is especially powerful. “Shylock,” he says, “is a true representative of his nation; wherein we have a pride which for ages never ceased to provoke hostility, but which no hostility could ever subdue; a thrift which still invited rapacity, but which no rapacity could ever exhaust; and a weakness, which, while it exposed the subjects to wrong, only deepened their hate, because it left them without the means or the hope of redress. Thus Shylock is a type of national sufferings, sympathies, and antipathies. Himself an object of bitter insult and scorn to those about him; surrounded by enemies whom he is too proud to conciliate and too weak to oppose; he can have no life among them but money; no hold upon them but interest; no indemnity out of them but revenge. Such being the case, what wonder that the elements of national greatness became congealed or petrified into malignity? As avarice was the passion in which he mainly lived, of course, the Christian virtues which thwarted this were the greatest wrong that could be done him. With these strong national traits are interwoven personal traits equally strong. Thoroughly and intensely Jewish, he is not more a Jew than he is Shylock. In his hard, icy intellectuality, and his ‘dry, mummy-like tenacity’ of purpose, with a dash now and then of biting sarcastic humor, we see the remains of a great and noble nature, out of which all the genial sap of humanity has been pressed by accumulated injuries. With as much elasticity of mind as stiffness of neck, every step he takes but the last is as firm as the earth he treads upon. Nothing can daunt, nothing disconcert him; remonstrance cannot move, ridicule cannot touch, obloquy cannot exasperate him; when he has not provoked, he has been forced to bear them; and now that he does provoke them, he is proof against them. In a word, he may be broken; he cannot be bent.”

We cannot refrain from picking out a sentence, here and there, in the critic’s admirable delineation of Portia. “Eminently practical in her tastes and turn of mind, full of native, home-bred sense and virtue, she unites therewith something of the ripeness and dignity of a sage, a rich, mellow eloquence, and a large, noble discourse, the whole being tempered with the best grace and sensibility of womanhood. . . Nothing can be more fitting and well-placed than her demeanor, now bracing her speech with grave maxims of moral and practical wisdom, now unbending her mind in playful sallies of wit, or innocent, roguish banter. . . . It is no drawback upon Portia’s strength and substantial dignity of character, that her nature is all overflowing with romance; rather, this it is that glorifies her and breathes enchantment about her; it adds that precious seeing to the eye which conducts her to such winning beauty and sweetness of deportment, and makes her the ‘rich-souled’ creature that Schlegel describes her to be.”

The introductions to All’s Well that Ends Well, and The Taming of the Shrew, are replete with shrewd remark and acute analysis, but both are inferior to the criticism of As You Like It. The woodland sweetness of this play tasks all the subtlety and all the enthusiasm of Mr. Hudson to do it justice. An exquisite ideal beauty casts its sweet and satisfying charm over the whole of this matchless comedy, and we envy Shakspeare’s delight in its composition more than Campbell envied his happiness in bodying forth A Midsummer Night’s Dream. Even Le Beau, the courtier of Frederic, is an ideal courtier; on inborn gentlemanliness, of the finest kind, stealing out from him in performing his most ungracious duties. This character is commonly performed on the stage by the worst actor the manager has in his company, but we have always noticed that the feeblest performer became lifted into dignity by simply pronouncing one golden sentence in the first act. It is where Le Beau expresses at once his loyal duty to Frederic and his admiration for Orlando’s brave and gentle qualities. As his master has chosen to be Orlando’s enemy, he cannot obey his impulse to be Orlando’s friend, and his parting words to the latter are touchingly noble:

                  “Sir, fare you well:

Hereafter in a better world than this,

I shall desire more love and knowledge of you.”

Mr. Hudson says very acutely of the characters of As You Like It, that, “diverted by fortune from all their cherished plans and purposes, they pass before us in just that moral and intellectual dishabille, which best reveals their indwelling graces of heart and mind.” This, it seems to us, touches the inmost secret of the delight all mankind have in this play. There is a complete absence of restraint upon expression, and the tongues of all run of their own sweet will, in a region of perfect freedom. It is whim exalted into poetry. Of Touchstone, our critic remarks, that though he never touches so deep a chord as the poor fool in Lear, that “he is the most entertaining of Shakspeare’s privileged characters. . . . It is curious to observe how the poet takes care to let us know from the first, that beneath the affectations of his calling some precious sentiments have been kept alive; that far within the fool there is a secret reserve of the man, ready to leap forth and combine with better influences as soon as the incrustations of art are thawed and broken up.” Passing over some keen observations on Jaques and the class of character to which he belongs, we come to Mr. Hudson’s exquisite description of Rosalind, the style of which would alone tempt one to extract it. The ideal merriment of Rosalind—and after listening to her for an hour, it seems a misuse of the word merriment to apply it to glee less graceful, light and lark-like than her own—has rarely been touched with so delicate an analysis. “For wit,” he says, “this strange, queer, lovely being is fully equal, perhaps superior to Beatrice, yet nowise resembling her. A soft, subtle, nimble essence, consisting in one knows not what, ‘and springing up one can hardly tell how,’ her wit neither stings nor burns, but plays briskly and airily over all things within its reach, enriching and adorning them, insomuch that one could ask no greater pleasure than to be the continual theme of it. In its irrepressible vivacity it waits not for occasion, but runs on forever, and we wish it to run on forever: we have a sort of faith that her dreams are made of cunning, quirkish, graceful fancies. And her heart seems a perennial fountain of affectionate cheerfulness; no trial can break, no sorrow chill her flow of spirits; even her deepest sighs are breathed forth in a wrappage of innocent mirth; an arch, roguish smile irradiates her saddest tears. Yet beneath all her playfulness we feel that there is a firm basis of thought and womanly dignity, so that she never laughs away our respect.”

An edition of Shakspeare, edited so admirably as this—so convenient in its form, so elegant in its execution, and so cheap in its price—will, we hope, have a circulation over the country corresponding to its great merits.

Utterance; or, Private Voices to the Public Heart. A Collection of Home Poems. By Caroline A. Briggs. Boston: Phillips, Sampson & Co. 1 vol. 12mo.

Our first impression of this volume we received from its title, and that impression was, of course, unfavorable, as the title certainly smacks of affectation. But it requires but a slight examination of the book to dissipate such a prejudice. It is a thoroughly genuine expression of a sensitive, thoughtful, artless, affectionate, and fanciful nature, and readily wins its way into the reader’s esteem. Even those passages which evince a sort of innocent ignorance of the conventions of society and letters, have a naïveté which charms while it amuses. The volume is a collection of short poems, ranged under the general titles of Voices of Affection, Voices of Grief, Voices of Cheer, Sacred Voices, and Voices of the Way, and one powerful Voice for the Poor, written in a measure whose movement has something of the fitful swiftness of the cold, wild wind, whose cruelty it deprecates. The following lines convey a vivid picture of desolation; the verse itself seeming to shudder in sympathy with the objects it holds up to pity:

              Oh, the Poor!

                The poor and old,

              On the moor

                And on the wold—

How desolate they are to-night and cold!

—I peeped into the broken panes,

Where the snow, and sleet, and rains

Of many a weary year have stolen,

Till the sashes are smeared, and soaked and swollen.

Little children with tangled hair,

And lips awry and feet half bare,

  Huddled around the smouldering fire,

Like beasts half crouching in their lair;

  While each, the while, by stealth drew nigher,

Covetous of the other’s share.

  Oh! ’twas a pitiful sight to see!

And mothers too were there,

  With infants shivering on their knee,

Or closer held with a mother’s care,

Or laid to rest with a hurried prayer,

A moan, half hope and half despair,

A muttered, “Pitiless Storm, forbear!”

When we say that there is in this volume some poems that an austere taste would have omitted, we merely say what we suspect is the truth, that the poetess is young, and that this is her first introduction to the public. We might object to a piece, here and there, that the feeling outruns the thought and fancy, and that commonplace lines occasionally glide stealthily in to meet the demands of the rhyme; but the faults which criticism might exhibit are few in comparison with the merits which shine forth of their own light on almost every page. The general impression which the whole book leaves on the memory is very pleasing. The defect of all young poets, that of expansiveness, is continually apparent; but it is a natural result of the movement of a nature so full of sensibility that it refuses to submit to the restraints of condensation, but pours itself out of its own sweet will. As a natural result of this extreme sensitiveness, the volume is comparatively destitute of those electric flashes of impassioned imagination, which come, swift, sure, and smiling from moods of the mind in which thought is condensed as well as animated by passion; but it still exhibits so genial a love of nature, a flow of feeling so kindly and sympathetic, so much beauty, and purity and sweetness of fancy, and withal so much richness of promise, and such a ready yielding of the mind to the poetical aspects of things, that we trust it will meet with the success due to its native excellencies of heart and brain.

The Snow-Image, and other Twice-Told Tales. By Nathaniel Hawthorne. Boston: Ticknor, Reed & Fields. 1 vol. 16mo.

This is a collection of Mr. Hawthorne’s Sketches and Stories which have not been included in any previous collection, and comprise his earliest and latest contributions to periodical literature. It can hardly add to his great reputation, though it fully sustains it. “The Snow-Image,” with which the volume commences, is one of those delicate creations which no imagination less etherial and less shaping than Hawthorne’s could body forth. “Main Street,” a sketch but little known, is an exquisite series of historical pictures, which bring the persons and events in the history of Salem, vividly home to the eye and the fancy. “Ethan Brand,” one of the most powerful of Hawthorne’s works, is a representation of a man, tormented with a desire to discover the unpardonable sin, and ending with finding it in his own breast. “The Great Stone Face,” a system of philosophy given in a series of characterizations, contains, among other forcible delineations, a full length of Daniel Webster. The volume contains a dozen other tales, some of them sunny in sentiment and subtle in humor, with touches as fine and keen as Addison’s or Steele’s: and others dark and fearful, as though the shadow of a thunder-cloud fell on the author’s page as he wrote. All are enveloped in the atmosphere, cheerful or sombre, of the mood of mind whence they proceeded, and all convey that unity of impression which indicates a firm hold on one strong conception. As stories, they arrest, fasten, fascinate attention; but, to the thoughtful reader they are not merely tales, but contributions to the philosophy of the human mind.

Memories of the Great Metropolis: or London from the Tower to the Crystal Palace. By F. Sanders. New York: Geo. P. Putnam. 1 vol. 12mo.

This elegant volume, sumptuous in its binding and finely printed and illustrated, meets a want both in the traveled and the untraveled public. The work of a gentleman who knows every nook and corner of the empire city by personal observation, and who, by his large acquaintance with English authors and English literary history, is enabled to point out all the localities consecrated by genius and heroism; it is full of interesting and attractive matter to all readers. As a guide to London, it will be found a genial as well as a knowing companion to the tourist. We have been especially pleased with those portions which describe the shops of the booksellers and the residences of the authors. The volume is exceedingly well written, and though crammed with facts, betrays neither the dryness nor confusion too often characteristic of similar books. The author’s “memories” are never dull, but sparkle with animation and point.

Memoirs of Margaret Fuller Ossoli. Boston: Phillips, Sampson & Co. 2 vols. 12mo.

This biography is the work of three “eminent hands”—William H. Channing, James Freeman Clarke, and Ralph Waldo Emerson, each writing that portion of Margaret’s life most familiar to himself. The result is one of the most curious, attractive and stimulating books of the season. The impression it conveys of the subject of the memoirs, is of a woman “large in heart and brain,” of great vigor and depth of nature, accomplished in many literatures, with an understanding capacious and masculine, and with a sensibility somewhat irregular and chaotic, in which powerful passions, delicate emotions and vague aspirations, seem never to have been harmonized into unity. The character, however, in spite of many limitations and some petty traits, was generally large and noble, and its essential excellence is not only demonstrated by the private journals and correspondence contained in these volumes, but by the fact that she merited the esteem and admiration of three such men as her biographers. Her defects are promptly admitted by all three, but in the opinion of all three they were superficial in comparison with the real graces and powers of her mind. In all those letters and journals in which her soul finds adequate expression, in which her most secret thoughts and most genuine aspirations are revealed, she is invariably true and noble; egotism, satire and pique have in them no place.

Mr. Emerson’s portion of these memoirs is done with his usual felicity of phrase and sharpness of statement, and is as attractive as any of his essays. He writes in a kindly spirit, and is evidently a genuine admirer of his subject, but his friendship is unaccompanied with exaggeration, and is combined with his usual austere but graceful honesty in stating his whole opinion. Thus, he gives the first impression which Miss Fuller made on him in these unflattering words: “Her extreme plainness—a trick of incessantly opening and shutting her eyelids—the nasal tone of her voice—all repelled; and I said to myself we shall never get far. It is to be said that Margaret made a disagreeable first impression on most persons, including those who became afterward her best friends, to such an extreme that they did not wish to be in the same room with her. This was partly the effect of her manners, which expressed an overweening sense of power and slight esteem of others, and partly the prejudice of her fame. She had a dangerous reputation for satire, in addition to her great scholarship. The men thought she carried too many guns, and the women did not like one who despised them.” He also gives some amusing instances of her self-esteem. “Margaret at first astonished and repelled us by a complacency that seemed the most assured since the days of Scaliger. . . . She occasionally let slip, with all the innocence imaginable, some phrase betraying the presence of a rather mountainous ME, in a way to surprise those who knew her good sense. She could say, as if she were stating a scientific fact, in enumerating the merits of somebody, ‘He appreciates ME.’ ”

Mr. Emerson accounts for this egotism partly on the ground of hereditary organization, and partly on “an ebullient sense of power, which she felt to be in her, and which as yet had found no channels.” In further illustration of this he adds, that in conversation she seldom, “except as a special grace, admitted others upon an equal ground with herself.” She was exceedingly tender, when she pleased to be, and most cherishing in her influence; but to elicit this tenderness, it was necessary to submit first to her personally. When a person was overwhelmed by her and answered not a word, except ‘Margaret, be merciful to me a sinner,’ then her love and tenderness would come like a seraph’s, and often an acknowledgment that she had been too harsh, and even a craving for pardon, with a humility—which, perhaps, she had caught from the other. But her instinct was not humility—that was an after thought.

This peculiarity, so honestly stated by Mr. Emerson, probably made Margaret Fuller all her enemies; and it is a fault which every person is bound to resent, though it appeared in an angel or archangel. It cannot be justified though it may be accounted for; and by those who knew her best, it was explained on principle! which relieved it of positive offensiveness. Some of her intellectual dependents, persons who gloried in wearing her mental livery, and were delighted with the servitude she enforced, might say very naively, in explanation, that Margaret was the greatest woman that ever was, and that Margaret was very sincere, and that being sincere it was very proper that she should not conceal her knowledge even of her own greatness.

In our opinion this egotism was the result of the vigor of her nature, which, in conversation, broke all conventional bounds, and came out in its whole wealth of thought and acquisition, eager for controversy or ravenous for sympathy, and communicating to her mind a bright and strong sense of individual power which at the time almost palliated its excesses. The excitement of her mind produced that effect which we often see in persons who are enraged—a condition in which expressions, regretted afterward for their extravagance, seem at the time too weak to convey the hot feeling of wrong which burns beneath them. In her journals, where she sharply scrutinises what she is and what she has produced, and where there is no excitement to stimulate her powers, she is sufficiently humble, acutely feels her imperfections, and the “mountainous me” dwindles into a mole-hill. She seems to have had the aspirations and the ambitions of great genius, had sufficient breadth of mind to take in the wide varieties of human power in history and literature, and had a corresponding scorn for the little and the common in mental effort; but she lacked a creative imagination, and was incapable of producing anything which at all realized the intimations of her nature. In conversation she rose instantly into sympathetic companionship with creative minds, and in the heat of the moment mistook it for a companionship and community in power. In this mood she might despise many who were her superiors in the shaping power of genius, though her inferiors in its loftiest aspirations.

These volumes are full of instances of her sincerity, her geniality, her love of the beautiful in nature and art, her fine critical powers, her enthusiasm for great measures of reform in America and Europe, and the noble scale on which she conducted her mental and moral culture. Though many may take exception to the generosity of the praise which her biographers lavish on her various graces and gifts of mind, every one must acknowledge the extreme richness of the materials which are frankly exhibited, to enable the reader to judge for himself. We doubt if there is any other American biography in which the whole interior truth relating to the character of the subject is so completely set forth, or which presents to the curious in mental organization so interesting a study in psychology.

Ravenscliffe. By the author of “The Old Men’s Tales,” etc. etc. New York: Harper & Brother.

In this novel the authoress puts forth her whole resources of passion and power in delineating hatred and revenge. The story sweeps on like a deep stream harrying to the sea, and the firm grasp of the writer on the reader’s arrested attention is not loosed for a moment. The influence of the same passion on the two characters of Randal Langford and Marcus Fitzroy, is exhibited with masterly skill. The motto of the book should have been taken from Shelley’s tremendous quatrain:

“Revenge and wrong bring forth their kind;

  The foul cubs like their parents are;

Their den is in the human mind,

  And conscience feeds them with despair.”

The vice of the novel is its continuous intensity, a peculiarity which characterizes all of Mrs. Marsh’s novels. The characters are only seen in their passionate moods, and the leading quality of their natures is developed with the consistency of a logical deduction. Though this gives emphasis to the ethical intent of the authoress, she sacrifices to it some of the most important principles of the true method of characterization. Her persons are apt to slide into personified passions.

A Popular Account of Discoveries at Nineveh. By Austin Henry Layard, D. C. L. New York: Harper & Brothers. 1 vol. 12mo.

This is an abridgment, by the author himself, of his larger work on Nineveh, which has obtained such extraordinary success. It is illustrated by a number of well executed wood-cuts, and is beautifully printed. The matter, it is needless to say, is full of interest and attractiveness, and will well repay all readers who may be repelled by the size of the original work.

Women of Christianity, Exemplary for Acts of Piety and Charity. By Julia Kavanagh, author of “Nathalie,” etc. New York: D. Appleton & Co. 1 vol. 12mo.

Christian women of this and all past ages would seem to be under especial obligations to the Messrs. Appletons for bringing their virtues and heroism before the public. The Women of the Old and New Testament, the Women of Early Christianity, and now the Christian Women of all Ages, witness their chivalrous devotion to the very best examples of the sex. Miss Kavanagh’s book gives short but admirable sketches of a great number of eminent devotees, from the virgins of the primitive church to Hannah More and Elizabeth Fry. Though her space hardly allows her to do full justice to the subject, she uses her materials so skillfully, and writes her condensed biographies with such fervor and power, that she escapes the imputation of meagreness.

The Broken Bud; or, Reminiscences of a Bereaved Mother. New York: Robert Carter & Brothers. 1 vol. 16mo.

Blossoms of Childhood. Edited by the author of “The Broken Bud”. New York: Robert Carter & Brothers. 1 vol. 16mo.

The first of these little volumes is the record of a child, who died just as her mind was expanding into affection and intelligence; and it is the most notable book of the kind we have ever seen. As giving the psychology of a mother’s feelings, it is well worthy of attention. It is written close to the heart of the matter, and is full of examples of that searching pathos which calls up instinctive tears. Rarely have we read a work of more affectionate intensity, or one in which a mournful experience, tempered by religious faith, is expressed with such genuine simplicity and truth to inward emotion. There are passages whose eloquence is so identical with the things it celebrates, that the reader sees and feels with hardly the consciousness of the agency of words. The other volume is a collection of poetry relating to children, in which the mother’s heart, so constantly present in the previous volume, ranges over the whole field of poetry, hoarding the precious lyrics which bring consolation by inspiring religious trust. Both works are of a peculiar character, indicating the presiding influence of one overmastering feeling, and striking at the very sources of emotion.

The Standard Speaker; containing exercises in Prose and Poetry for Declamation in Schools, Academies, Lyceums, Colleges. Newly Translated or Compiled from Celebrated Orators, Authors, and Popular Debaters, Ancient and Modern. A Treatise on Oratory and Elocution. Notes Explanatory and Biographical. By Epes Sargent. 1 vol., large 12mo. 558 pages. Philadelphia: Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co.

Mr. Sargent has here given us a “Speaker” far more comprehensive in design and elaborate in execution than any that has yet appeared. The great feature of the work is the completeness of the Senatorial Department, in which he has introduced not only passages of rare beauty and effect from Chatham, Burke, Grattan, Shell, Macaulay, and many others—all the passages of the right length for speaking—but has given some translations from Mirabeau, Victor Hugo, and other great speakers of France, which will become great favorites in Schools and Elocutionary Classes. The dramatic and poetical departments are also well filled, many new and striking pieces for Declamation and Recitation being introduced. No sectional favoritism seems to have been exercised in the compilation. All parts of the country, and indeed all countries are fairly represented in their contributions to all the forms of eloquence suitable for the purpose of the book. A great amount of original research and labor seems to have been expended on this volume, which—

“Is not the hasty product of a day,

But the well-ripened fruit of sage delay.”

In his position as Editor of a daily journal, the editor has had a more favorable opportunity than many enjoy to make collections for a work of this kind, and with what success he has availed himself of it, a cursory glance will show. While he has preserved all the old, indispensable masterpieces, he has placed side by side with them a majority of new ones, that promise to become equally celebrated. The work cannot fail to claim the prompt and favorable attention of Students and Teachers. It is issued in excellent style, by Messrs. Thomas, Cowperthwait & Co.

Bangs, Brother & Co., New York, have sent us fine editions of “Gibbon’s Greece,” “Ancient History of Herodotus,” Randall’s “Sheep Husbandry,” and an excellent edition of the “Tatler and Guardian,” with biographical memoranda by Thomas Babington Macaulay, all of which we will notice in future numbers.

Pretty Strong.—We do not charge Peterson any thing for the following as an advertisement. It is a better joke than has appeared in the Small-Talk:

It has been for years the cherished wish of the writer of this work, to make “THE TOWER OF LONDON,” the proudest monument of antiquity, (considered with reference to its historical associations,) in the known world—the groundwork of a Romance; and it is no slight satisfaction to him, that circumstances at length have enabled him to carry into effect his favorite project, in conjunction with the inimitable artist, whose Ninety-eight Original Designs and Engravings of all the Principal Objects of Attraction and Interest to the reader, accompany the work.

The author has exhibited in this work, the “Tower of London” in the light of a Palace, a Prison, and a Fortress, and he has also contrived such a series of incidents as to introduce every relic of the old pile—its Towers, Chapels, Halls, Chambers, Gateways, Arches and Drawbridges—so that no part of this, the most venerable and interesting building in the known world, should remain unillustrated to the reader.

It is beyond all doubt one of the most interesting works ever published in the known world, and can be read and re-read with pleasure and satisfaction by every body. We advise all persons to get it and read it, for there is much to learn and valuable information to be gained from its pages, which cannot be obtained in any other work published in the known world. Published and for sale by


We shall look with great interest for Top’s first book from the unknown world, and have a right to expect something good. We only hope that the author will not “contrive such a series of incidents about Drawbridges,” as to let us down without fair warning.

Fitzgerald’s City Item.—This is the name of a weekly paper, now in its fifth year, published in this city by Fitzgerald & Co., at Two Dollars per annum. This journal enjoys the reputation of being undoubted authority upon all Literary, Musical, Fine Art, and Dramatic Matters. It has been conducted from the beginning by Mr. Fitzgerald, and we have often admired his good-nature, his frankness, and his ability. Untiring industry has established The City Item upon a firm basis. Fitzgerald & Co. offer as a premium to new subscribers, an admirable life-size portrait of the Hungarian patriot, Kossuth. Graham’s Magazine and The City Item may be secured for Four Dollars.


Held in his idle moments, with his Readers, Correspondents and Exchanges.

Our Small-Talk has afforded food for infinite jest to a few unfledged wits and cubs of critics, clever word-snappers, who keep reiterating the joke that the Small-Talk is small—very. Of course it is, goslings! it was so called and set down originally in the bills. So do not imagine that you are discoverers, and set yourselves off to the Polar regions in search of Sir John Franklin. The Small-Talk is more than small—it is pert, impudent, audacious, outrageous, insolent, and, cool. More than that, it is—“to be continued.”

Ah! now, isn’t this delightful? We were wondering whether we should ever get another love-letter, when lo! in comes the mail, from which we extract the following delicious epistle from a young lady, who, we know, would love us, if we were only a bachelor:

        “To Graham.


“A ‘bachelor,’ thou sayest?—ha-ha—have a care—

A target too tempting—I bid thee beware!

Now stand and deliver, thou ‘knave of the heart!’

Thy ‘clubs’ shall not parry the aim of my dart.


“Thy armor—thy pleading, and dodging is vain,

Wry faces uncalled for! ’tis hymenial chain

We wish to throw round thee—surrender! I bid—

All woven of roses, the thorns are quite hid.


“A net-work of love shall enshroud thee forever—

(‘Enshroud’ is too icy, it makes Cupid shiver—

Imprison is better—I like the word best—)

When the heart’s taken captive the spirit’s at rest.


“Two short little weeks, out of fifty or more,

Is all we can claim—and one year out of four—

We must make up in speed, what we lack for in time,

And make a bold push or have no Valentine.


“An abrupt, ringing laugh, from a friend standing near,

And—‘I read you it wrong!’ he says, ‘Benedict!’ do ye hear?

How horrid provoking to play me this game!

I don’t care, I will send it subscribed with my name.”

H. H.

We wont give the name in full, or we should never receive another love token. But—what have we here? as we live—another Valentine! and with a sprig of geranium, too, pressed loving between the paper—and love verses! No—we will not print these, they are too confidingly tender and hardly “allowable” rhyme.

But here comes one, with a full, round superscription, for all the world like the hand of a lady we used to love when we were a boy—adoringly, wildly, most insanely. She was older than we were, and didn’t take the matter so much to heart. Some other fellow took her off—a cadet, or something of that sort from West Point—and she never returned our love letter. But what is this? Ha! $3— there is something in this, that is a cure for the twinges of an old love wound:

Fort Meade, Florida, Feb. 10th, 1852.

Dear Graham—The February number of your Magazine has this day come to hand, and acting on the hint you give in your Small-Talk, i. e. ‘Money is worth 2 per cent. a month,’ I herewith inclose the $3 for this year’s subscription to your book. I showed that portion of your Small-Talk(?) headed ‘That bill again,’ to my wife; and what do you think? Why, instead of calling you a good-for-nothing-impertinent man, she said, ‘Why don’t you give the man his money? Graham is a dear, good fellow and he deserves it,’ etc. Of course, I had to back down, and here is the tin.

“Truly yours,

G. D.

Now we like that woman, and will bet she was just the girl that would go off with a soldier—full of all brave and good thoughts, and loving as a southern wind in an orange grove. If we ever do go to Florida, we shall stop at the Fort and see this lady, and shake hands all round with the G. D.’s.

Thanks.—Our space is limited, in this number, although we have much to say to our friends and readers; but we shall take room enough to thank most sincerely and heartily, the many editors who have sent us clubs and single subscribers for the year 1852. We had intended to notice, by letter, the many kind expressions of regard for our business welfare, but so many and rapidly sent were these missives of good-will, that we abandoned the undertaking, and must here content ourself with saying—to one and allThanks!

We can get up no theatrical speech for the occasion, and can only promise to devote such abilities as we have been blessed with, be they poor or rich, to making “Graham”—what we hope it can be made, under our administration—“the best Magazine in the country.” We can only say, that our whole time and thought are freely bestowed upon the work—that we have no other avocation, similar, or adverse, to distract our attention, and if we fail to realize our aim, in the opinion of our readers and friends, that our ability comes short of our ambition. So said—so done. This number is a fair sample of what we can do; and we think we can do better, and shall try.

The Saturday Gazette.—This well-known Family Paper is now under the charge of Alexander Cummings and Mrs. Joseph C. Neal, and has been, both in typographical execution and in literary excellence, much improved. Mrs. Neal’s delightful Letters from the South, are a very decided addition to the intellectual attractions of the Gazette—the Foreign Correspondence is more complete than ever, and the Stories and Essays to be found in its ample pages are of the very highest order.

A prospectus of the paper, setting forth in detail the advantages of the Gazette, will be found upon the third page of our cover, and a specimen copy of the paper will be sent to such of our readers as desire to see it, upon application to A. Cummings & Co.

The News-Letter, at Galesburg, gives us a notice of a column, full of all sorts of hits and good things. The Cynthiana News and the Rifle must buck up or they will lose the stakes. Although the metal of Rifle is good, and the bore perfect, we can beat the editor with pistols, at ten paces, for a Turkey! We send Atkinson of the News a sheet—Wilcox will supply and suit you—cash or approved paper—samples forwarded. We accept the Sandy Hill Herald’s invitation! said shall look at those “acres” until our heart aches.


“Shall the Maine question now be put?” is the great inquiry that agitates the country, and stirs, in all true hearts, a lively affirmative. The people are “ready for the question.” Graham himself is ready, and having in times past been a good judge of the various brands, he believes that one and all corrupt and destroy the brain and conscience. So he is down upon King Alcohol and his cohorts. We do not propose to give a temperance lecture upon the present “interesting occasion”—but if any body can read the following ode by Brown—the accomplished translator of Spanish literature, and feel no misgiving about Rum, his sensibilities are fire-proof. “The English language contains nothing more forcibly and terribly eloquent than this unique lexicon of horrors.”





“Oh, thou invisible spirit of Rum! if thou hadst no name by which to know thee, we would call thee—devil.”—Shakspeare.

Let thy devotee extol thee,

  And thy wondrous virtues sum;

But the worst of names I’ll call thee,

  O, thou hydra monster, Rum!


Pimple-maker, visage-bloater,

  Health-corrupter, idler’s mate;

Mischief breeder, vice promoter,

  Credit spoiler, devil’s bait.


Almshouse builder, pauper maker,

  Trust betrayer, sorrow’s source;

Pocket emptier, Sabbath breaker,

  Conscience stiller, guilt’s resource.


Nerve enfeebler, system shatterer,

  Thirst increaser, vagrant thief;

Cough producer, treacherous flatterer,

  Mud bedauber, mock relief.


Business hinderer, spleen instiller,

  Wo begetter, friendship’s bane;

Anger heater, Bridewell filler,

  Debt involver, toper’s chain.


Memory drowner, honor wrecker,

  Judgment warper, blue-faced quack;

Feud beginner, rags bedecker,

  Strife enkindler, fortune’s wreck.


Summer’s cooler, winter’s warmer,

  Blood polluter, specious snare;

Mob collector, man transformer,

  Bond undoer, gambler’s fare.


Speech bewrangler, headlong bringer,

  Vitals burner, deadly fire;

Riot mover, firebrand flinger,

  Discord kindler, misery’s sire.


Sinews robber, worth depriver,

  Strength subduer, hideous foe;

Reason thwarter, fraud contriver,

  Money waster, nations’ wo.


Vile seducer, joy dispeller,

  Peace disturber, blackguard guest;

Sloth implanter, liver sweller,

  Brain distracter, hateful pest.


Wit destroyer, joy impairer,

  Scandal dealer, foul-mouthed scourge;

Senses blunter, youth ensnarer,

  Crime inventor, ruin’s verge.


Virtue blaster, base deceiver,

  Spite displayer, sot’s delight;

Noise exciter, stomach heaver,

  Falsehood spreader, scorpion’s bite.


Quarrel plotter, rage discharger,

  Giant conqueror, wasteful sway;

Chin carbuncler, tongue enlarger,

  Malice venter, death’s broadway.


Household scatterer, high-hope dasher,

  Death’s forerunner, hell’s dire brink;

Ravenous murderer, windpipe slasher,

  Drunkard’s lodging, meat and drink!


Well—what are the arguments of the opponents of the “Maine Law!” We have heard them—having been present at the grand gathering of Distillers, Rum-sellers, and Drinkers at Tripler Hall, on Friday evening, the 27th of February. About as precious a set of “jolly fellows” as we ever saw in all our life, were there assembled to listen to the advantages of dying by slow poison. We give a picture, which sets forth the point and moral of the matter.

Arguments of the opponents of the Maine law—illustrated.

This was the pith and marrow of the whole affair. “Rum was”—Well, what? Why—“Rum!” Every body was enlightened and saw clearly. There was not a shadow of doubt about the matter. Its character was not in the least altered—it was the same devil, only painted a little red—not at all improved either, by the artists—in fact, Mr. Camp made him rather more hideous by attempting to make him a facetious, jolly sort of a devil, without any evil quality, but much given to poetry, philosophy, and particularly, mechanics. His inventive powers, however, were not brought out quite as clearly as Mr. Camp’s own, who, with a fine delivery and sonorous ring of voice, did all that it was possible for man to do in a bad cause—still he did not do—at least, not the majority there assembled. The whole affair was a horrible jest—it was—Yes! it was a Rum-joke—and nothing else.

No one was hardy enough to attempt to prove, that Rum ever made a great man greater—or improved the mental calibre of a small one. Ever warmed the heart of a miser to do an unrepented act of generosity—or enlarged the soul to permanent and consistent acts of lofty heroism for the welfare of mankind. Ever filled the cottage with smiling faces and happy hearts, permanently—shed plenty upon the tables of the poor, or made a wife happier or children more respected—ever, in short, carried any thing but a concealed curse in its bright bubbles and brilliant hues.

We came away with no change of opinion as to the deleterious effects of Rum as a beverage. Taken either at the social board, with jolly good fellows, or among wits, poets and philosophers—it carries the same horror on its front, the same death in its smile. Even the sounding-boards, from which the notes of Jenny Lind floated out, almost divinely, gave no music to the voice of Rum’s advocate—the best joke had a croak—and the laughter a horribly consumptive sound.


“A little tipple will do us no harm.”


“We wont go home till morning,

 We wont go home till morning,

    Till daylight doth appear.”


A very sudden call by a very ugly customer.




Published by permission of LEE & WALKER, 188 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia,

Publishers and Importers of Music and Musical Instruments.

Sweet sunny Isle! my native land!

  How dear thou art to me,

Were all the world at

my command,

  I still would cling to thee.

My boyhood’s home could I forget?

  Though I might be forgot;

For those I love are living yet,

  In that dear cherish’d spot.

For those I love are living yet

  In that dear cherish’d spot.


Sweet sunny Isle! though now a man,

  Wherever I may roam,

My heart I know it never can

  Forget my boyhood’s home.

One only hope one only care

  Next that of Heaven above,

That I might once again be there—

  Once more with those I love.


Those kindred hearts, those loving friends,

  And all my boyish pets,

Would welcome me and make amends

  For all long past regrets.

But ah! I fear ’twill never prove

  Again my happy lot;

Then all I ask of those I love,

  One thought—“Forget me not.”

Transcriber’s Notes:

Table of Contents has been added for reader convenience. Archaic spellings and hyphenation have been retained. Obvious typesetting and punctuation errors have been corrected without note. Other errors have been corrected as noted below. For illustrations, some caption text may be missing or incomplete due to condition of the originals available for preparation of the eBook.


page 364, children where the ==> children were the

page 372, and author’s were ==> and authors were

page 404, read in Saronis’ Musical ==> read in Saroni’s Musical

page 405, Rappresentatione del Animo e del ==> Rappresentatione di Anima e di

page 405, Cavaliere, of Rome, ==> Cavalieri, of Rome,

page 405, title “Dell Animo e del ==> title “Dell Anima e di

page 405, of Cavaliere. But it ==> of Cavalieri. But it

page 414, feet, are not ==> feet, they are not

page 440, those horrid Affgaun’s ==> those horrid Affgauns



[The end of Graham's Magazine Vol XL No. 4 April 1852 edited by George R. Graham]