The Project Gutenberg eBook of Journeys Through Bookland, Vol. 4

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Title: Journeys Through Bookland, Vol. 4

Author: Charles Herbert Sylvester

Release date: December 1, 2004 [eBook #7013]
Most recently updated: December 30, 2020

Language: English


Produced by William Koven, Juliet Sutherland, Charles Franks

and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team


A New and Original Plan For Reading Applied To The World's Best
Literature For Children


Author of English and American Literature



BETTER THAN GOLD ………………………………….. Father Ryan

My HEART LEAPS UP……………………………. William Wordsworth

THE BAREFOOT BOY ……………………….. John Greenleaf Whittier

RAIN ON THE ROOF ………………………………… Coates Kinney


ELEGY ON THE DEATH OF A MAD DOG ………………… Oliver Goldsmith

MOTHER'S WAY ……………………………………… Father Ryan

SONG OF THE BROOK ……………………………… Alfred Tennyson


FOOTSTEPS OF ANGELS ………………….. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

To H. W. L. ………………………………. James Russell Lowell

THE VILLAGE BLACKSMITH ……………….. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

THE WRECK OF THE HESPERUS …………….. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

A DOG OF FLANDERS …………………………… Louise de la Ramee

ALICE AND PHOEBE CARY …………………………….. Anna McCaleb

NEARER HOME ………………………………………. Phoebe Cary

PICTURES OF MEMORY …………………………………. Alice Cary

THE ESCAPE FROM PRISON ……………………… Sir Samuel W. Baker


THE DEFINITION OF A GENTLEMAN …………………… Cardinal Newman

THE UNIVERSAL PRAYER ……………………………. Alexander Pope

INCIDENT OF THE FRENCH CAMP …………………….. Robert Browning

NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE ……………………………. Grace E. Sellon

THE PINE-TREE SHILLINGS……………………… Nathaniel Hawthorne


THE SUNKEN TREASURE ………………………… Nathaniel Hawthorne

THE HUTCHINSON MOB …………………………. Nathaniel Hawthorne

THE BOSTON MASSACRE ………………………… Nathaniel Hawthorne

SHERIDAN'S RIDE …………………………… Thomas Buchanan Read

JOAN OF ARC …………………………………. Thomas de Quincey

PANCRATIUS …………………………………… Cardinal Wiseman

ALFRED THE GREAT ………………………………. Charles Dickens

THE BURIAL OF MOSES …………………….. Cecil Frances Alexander

BERNARDO DEL CARPIO …………………………….. Felicia Hemans


CHEVY-CHASE ……………………………………. Richard Sheale

THE ATTACK ON THE CASTLE ………………………. Sir Walter Scott

THE DEATH OF HECTOR …………………………. From Homer's Iliad

THE WOODEN HORSE ………………………….. From Vergil's Aeneid


THE PILGRIM'S PROGRESS …………………………….. John Bunyan

AWAY …………………………………….. James Whitcomb Riley


LITTLE BREECHES ……………………………………… John Hay

THE YARN OF THE "NANCY BELL" ……………………… W. S. Gilbert

KATEY'S LETTER ………………………………….. Lady Dufferin

THE ARICKARA INDIANS …………………………. Washington Irving


REBECCA AT THE WINDOW (Color Plate) Louis Grell

THE BAREFOOT BOY Iris Weddell White

RAIN ON THE ROOF Lucille Enders













ALICE CARY (Halftone)


ANCHOR Louis Grell



LEONTINE Louis Grell

"WE'VE GOT YOU RATISBON!" Herbert N. Rudeen




"FATHER, DO YOU NOT HEAR?" Herbert N. Rudeen




THE STEED SWEPT ON Herbert N. Rudeen

JOAN OF ARC (Halftone)













LAOCOÖN (Halftone)



JOHN BUNYAN (Halftone)











  Better than grandeur, better than gold,
  Than rank and titles a thousand fold,
  Is a healthy body, a mind at ease,
  And simple pleasures' that always please.
  A heart that can feel for another's woe,
  And share his joys with a genial glow,
  With sympathies large enough to enfold
  All men as brothers, is better than gold.

  Better than gold is a conscience clear,
  Though toiling for bread in an humble sphere,
  Doubly blessed with content and health,
  Untried by the lusts and cares of wealth,
  Lowly living and lofty thought
  Adorn and ennoble a poor man's cot;
  For mind and morals in nature's plan
  Are the genuine tests of a gentleman.

  Better than gold is the sweet repose
  Of the sons of toil when the labors close;
  Better than gold is the poor man's sleep,
  And the balm that drops on his slumbers deep.
  Bring sleeping draughts to the downy bed,
  Where luxury pillows its aching head,
  The toiler simple opiate deems
  A shorter route to the land of dreams.

  Better than gold is a thinking mind,
  That in the realm of books can find
  A treasure surpassing Australian ore,
  And live with the great and good of yore.
  The sage's lore and the poet's lay,
  The glories of empires passed away;
  The world's great drama will thus unfold
  And yield a pleasure better than gold.

  Better than gold is a peaceful home
  Where all the fireside characters come,
  The shrine of love, the heaven of life,
  Hallowed by mother, or sister, or wife.
  However humble the home may be,
  Or tried with sorrow by heaven's decree,
  The blessings that never were bought or sold,
  And center there, are better than gold.



  My heart leaps up when I behold
    A rainbow in the sky;
  So was it when my life began;
  So is it now I am a man;
  So be it when I shall grow old,
    Or let me die!
  The Child is father of the Man;
  And I could wish my days to be
  Bound each to each by natural piety.



Blessings on thee, little man,
Barefoot boy, with cheek of tan!
With thy turned-up pantaloons,
And thy merry whistled tunes;
With thy red lip, redder still
Kissed by strawberries on the hill;
With the sunshine on thy face,
Through thy torn brim's jaunty grace;
From my heart I give thee joy,—
I was once a barefoot boy!
Prince thou art,—the grown-up man
Only is republican.
Let the million-dollared ride!
Barefoot, trudging at his side,
Thou hast more than he can buy
In the reach of ear and eye,—
Outward sunshine, inward joy;
Blessings on thee, barefoot boy!

  O for boyhood's painless play,
Sleep that wakes in laughing day,
Health that mocks the doctor's rules,
Knowledge never learned of schools,
Of the wild bee's morning chase,
Of the wild flower's time and place,
Flight of fowl and habitude
Of the tenants of the wood;
How the tortoise bears his shell,
How the woodchuck digs his cell,
And the ground-mole sinks his well;
How the robin feeds her young,
How the oriole's nest is hung;
Where the whitest lilies blow,
Where the freshest berries blow,
Where the ground-nut trails its vine,
Where the wood-grape's clusters shine;
Of the black wasp's cunning way,
Mason of his walls of clay,
And the architectural plans
Of gray hornet artisans!
For, eschewing books and tasks
Nature answers all he asks;

Hand in hand with her he walks,
Face to face with her he talks,
Part and parcel of her joy,—
Blessings on the barefoot boy!

  O for boyhood's time of June,
Crowding years in one brief moon,
When all things I heard or saw,
Me, their master, waited for.
I was rich in flowers and trees,
Humming-birds and honey-bees;
For my sport the squirrel played,
Plied the snouted mole his spade;
For my taste the blackberry cone
Purpled over hedge and stone;
Laughed the brook for my delight
Through the day and through the night,—
Whispering at the garden wall,
Talked with me from fall to fall;
Mine the sand-rimmed pickerel pond,
Mine the walnut slopes beyond,
Mine, on bending orchard trees,
Apples of Hesperides!
Still as my horizon grew,
Larger grew my riches too;
All the world I saw or knew
Seemed a complex Chinese toy,
Fashioned for a barefoot boy!

  O for festal dainties spread,
Like my bowl of milk and bread;
Pewter spoon and bowl of wood,
On the door-stone, gray and rude!
O'er me, like a regal tent,
Cloudy-ribbed, the sunset bent,
Purple-curtained, fringed with gold,
Looped in many a wind-swung fold;
While for music came the play
Of the pied frogs' orchestra;
And, to light the noisy choir,
Lit the fly his lamp of fire.
I was monarch: pomp and joy
Waited on the barefoot boy!

  Cheerily, then, my little man,
Live and laugh, as boyhood can!
Though the flinty slopes be hard,
Stubble-speared the new-mown sward,
Every morn shall lead thee through
Fresh baptisms of the dew;
Every evening from they feet
Shall the cool wind kiss the heat;
All too soon these feet must hide
In the prison cells of pride,
Lose the freedom of the sod,
Like a colt's for work be shod,
Made to tread the mills of toil
Up and down in ceaseless moil:
Happy if their track be found
Never on forbidden ground;
Happy if they sink not in
Quick and treacherous sands of sin.
Ah! that thou couldst know thy joy,
Ere it passes, barefoot boy!

RAIN ON THE ROOF [Footnote: Coates Kinney, born in New York in 1826, gives this account of the way in which the song came to be written: "The verses were written when I was about twenty years of age, as nearly as I can remember. They were inspired close to the rafters of a little story- and-a-half frame house. The language, as first published, was not composed, it came. I had just a little more to do with it than I had to do with the coming of the rain. This poem, in its entirety, came to me and asked me to put it down, the next afternoon, in the course of a solitary and aimless wandering through a summer wood."]

When the humid showers hover
  Over all the starry spheres
And the melancholy darkness
  Gently weeps in rainy tears,
What a bliss to press the pillow
  Of a cottage-chamber bed,
And to listen to the patter
  Of the soft rain overhead!

Every tinkle on the shingles.
  Has an echo in the heart:
And a thousand dreamy fancies
  Into busy being start,
And a thousand recollections
  Weave their air-threads into woof,
As I listen to the patter
  Of the rain upon the roof.

Now in memory comes my mother,
  As she was long years agone,
To regard the darling dreamers
  Ere she left them till the dawn:
O! I see her leaning o'er me,
  As I list to this refrain
Which is played upon the shingles
  By the patter of the rain.

Then my little seraph sister,
  With her wings and waving hair,
And her star-eyed cherub brother—
  A serene, angelic pair!—
Glide around my wakeful pillow,
  With their praise or mild reproof,
As I listen to the murmur
  Of the soft rain on the roof.

Art hath naught of tone or cadence
  That can work with such a spell
In the soul's mysterious fountains,
  Whence the tears of rapture well,
As that melody of Nature,
  That subdued, subduing strain
Which is played upon the shingles
  By the patter of the rain.



The national hero of Spain is universally known as the Cid, and around his name have gathered tales as marvelous as those of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. Some historians have doubted the existence of the Cid, while others, whom we may prefer to believe, give him a distinct place in history. According to the latter, he was a descendant of one of the noblest families of Castile, and as early as 1064 his name is mentioned as that of a great warrior. So far as we are concerned, we need not discuss the matter, for it is our purpose to see him as a great hero whose name stood for honor and bravery, and whose influence upon the youth of Spain has been wonderful. Accordingly, we must know the Cid as he appears in song and story rather than as he is known in history.

There are several prose chronicles in Spanish, which tell the story of the Cid, and numberless poems and legends. The English poet, Robert Southey, has given us the best translation of these, and from his famous work, Chronicle of the Cid, we take the selections which are printed in this volume. According to the Spanish accounts, Rodrigo was born in 1026 in Burgos, the son of Diego Laynez, who was then the head of the house of Layn Calvo. As a youth he was strong in arms and of high repute among his friends, for he early bestirred himself to protect the land from the Moors.

While Rodrigo was still in his early youth, his father was grievously insulted and struck in the face by Count Don Gomez. Diego was a man so old that his strength had passed from him, and he could not take vengeance, but retired to his home to dwell in solitude and lament over his dishonor. He took no pleasure in his food, neither could he sleep by night nor would he lift up his eyes from the ground, nor stir out of his house, nor commune with his friends, but turned from them in silence as if the breath of his shame would taint them. The Count was a mighty man in arms and so powerful that he had a thousand friends among the mountains. Rodrigo, young as he was, considered this power as nothing when he thought of the wrong done to his father, and determined to take his own revenge. His father, seeing of how good heart he was, gave him his sword and his blessing. Rodrigo went out, defied the Count, fought with and killed him, and cutting off his head carried it home. The old man was sitting at table, the food lying before him untasted, when Rodrigo returned, and, pointing to the head which hung from the horse's collar, dropping blood, bade him look up, saying, "Here is the herb which will restore to you your appetite. The tongue which insulted you is no longer a tongue, the hand no longer a hand." Then the old man arose, embraced his son and placed him above him at the table, saying, "The man who brought home that head must be the head of the house of Layn Calvo."

At about this time, the king, Don Ferrando, who honors upon Rodrigo for his success against the Moors, called him to aid against the King of Aragon, who claimed the city of Calahorra, but had consented to let the ownership of the city rest upon a trial by combat between two of their greatest knights. The King of Aragon chose Don Martin Gonzalez, and Don Ferrando, Rodrigo. The latter was well pleased at the prospect of the battle, but before the day of the combat he started on a pilgrimage, which he had previously vowed.


"Rodrigo forthwith set out upon the road, and took with him twenty knights. And as he went he did great good, and gave alms, feeding the poor and needy. And upon the way they found a leper, struggling in a quagmire, who cried out to them with a loud voice to help him for the love of God; and when Rodrigo heard this, he alighted from his beast and helped him, and placed him upon the beast before him, and carried him with him in this manner to the inn where he took up his lodging that night. At this were his knights little pleased. And when supper was ready he bade his knights take their seats, and he took the leper by the hand, and seated him next himself, and ate with him out of the same dish. The knights were greatly offended at this foul sight, insomuch that they rose up and left the chamber. But Rodrigo ordered a bed to be made ready for himself and for the leper, and they twain slept together. When it was midnight and Rodrigo was fast asleep, the leper breathed against him between his shoulders, and that breath was so strong that it passed through him, even through his breast; and he awoke, being astounded, and felt for the leper by him, and found him not; and he began to call him, but there was no reply. Then he arose in fear, and called for light, and it was brought him; and he looked for the leper and could see nothing; so he returned into the bed, leaving the light burning. And he began to think within himself what had happened, and of that breath which had passed through him, and how the leper was not there. After a while, as he was thus musing, there appeared before him one in white garments, who said unto him, 'Sleepest thou or wakest thou, Rodrigo?' and he answered and said, 'I do not sleep: but who art thou that bringest with thee such brightness and so sweet an odour?' Then said he, 'I am Saint Lazarus, and know that I was a leper to whom thou didst so much good and so great honour for the love of God; and because thou didst this for His sake hath God now granted thee a great gift; for whensoever that breath which thou hast felt shall come upon thee, whatever thing thou desirest to do, and shalt then begin, that shalt thou accomplish to thy heart's desire, whether it be in battle or aught else, so that thy honour shall go on increasing from day to day; and thou shalt be feared both by Moors and Christians, and thy enemies shall never prevail against thee, and thou shalt die an honourable death in thine own house, and in thy renown, for God hath blessed thee,—therefore go thou on, and evermore persevere in doing good;' and with that he disappeared. And Rodrigo arose and prayed to our lady and intercessor St. Mary, that she would pray to her blessed son for him to watch over both his body and soul in all his undertakings; and he continued in prayer till the day broke. Then he proceeded on his way, and performed his pilgrimage, doing much good for the love of God and of St. Mary."

Rodrigo was successful in his combat against Martin Gonzalez, and after the death of the latter rose much higher in esteem with King Ferrando. At no time was Rodrigo unworthy of his confidence, so that finally the king knighted him after this manner: The king girded on his sword and gave him the kiss, but not the blow. Usually this blow was given with the hand upon the neck, at which time the king said, "Awake, and sleep not in the affairs of knighthood." The king omitted this, knowing that Rodrigo needed no such command. To do the new knight more honour, the queen gave him his horse and her daughter fastened on his spurs. From that day he was called Ruydiez. Ruy is merely an abbreviation of Rodrigo, and Ruydiez means Rodrigo the son of Diego. Thereafter the king commanded him to knight nine noble squires with his own hand, and he took his sword before the altar and knighted them.

It was soon after this that there came to the king messengers from the Moors, whom Ruydiez had overpowered, all bringing him tribute and praising the generous treatment he had accorded them after his victory. At the same time they called him Cid, which meant lord, and from this time on by the king's orders Ruydiez vas called The Cid, because the Moors had so named him. To this name is added the word Campeador, which means The Conqueror.

The remaining incidents from the life of The Cid are taken directly from Southey's Chronicle of the Cid.


Here the history relates that Martin Pelaez, the Asturian, came with a convoy of laden beasts, carrying provisions to the host of the Cid; and as he passed near the town the Moors sallied out in great numbers against him; but he, though he had few with him, defended the convoy right well, and did great hurt to the Moors, slaying many of them, and drove them into the town. This Martin Pelaez, who is here spoken of, did the Cid make a right good knight of a coward, as ye shall hear.

When the Cid first began to lay siege to the city of Valencia, this Martin Pelaez came unto him; he was a knight, a native of Santillana in Asturias, a hidalgo, great of body and strong of limb, a well-made man of goodly semblance, but withal a right coward at heart, which he had shown in many places when he was among feats of arms. And the Cid was sorry when he came unto him, though he would not let him perceive this; for he knew he was not fit to be of his company. Howbeit he thought that since he was come, he would make him brave, whether he would or not.

And when the Cid began to war upon the town, and sent parties against it twice and thrice a day, as ye have heard, for the Cid was alway upon the alert, there was fighting and tourneying every day. One day it fell out that the Cid and his kinsmen and friends and vassals were engaged in a great encounter, and this Martin Pelaez was well armed; and when he saw that the Moors and Christians were at it, he fled and betook himself to his lodging, and there hid himself till the Cid returned to dinner. And the Cid saw what Martin Pelaez did, and when he had conquered the Moors he returned to his lodging to dinner.

Now it was the custom of the Cid to eat at a high table, seated on his bench, at the head. And Don Alvar Fañez, and Pero Bermudez, and other precious knights, ate in another part, at high tables, full honourably, and none other knights whatsoever dared take their seats with them, unless they were such as deserved to be there; and the others who were not so approved in arms ate upon estrados, at tables with cushions. This was the order in the house of the Cid, and every one knew the place where he was to sit at meat, and every one strove all he could to gain the honour of sitting to eat at the table of Don Alvar Fañez and his companions, by strenuously behaving himself in all feats of arms; and thus the honour of the Cid was advanced. This Martin Pelaez, thinking that none had seen his badness, washed his hands in turn with the other knights, and would have taken his place among them.

And the Cid went unto him, and took him by the hand and said, "You are not such a one as deserves to sit with these, for they are worth more than you or than me; but I will have you with me:" and he seated him with himself at table.

And he, for lack of understanding, thought that the Cid did this to honour him above all the others.

On the morrow the Cid and his company rode towards Valencia, and the Moors came out to the tourney; and Martin Pelaez went out well armed, and was among the foremost who charged the Moors, and when he was in among them he turned the reins, and went back to his lodging; and the Cid took heed to all that he did, and saw that though he had done badly he had done better than the first day.

And when the Cid had driven the Moors into the town he returned to his lodging, and as he sat down to meat he took this Martin Pelaez by the hand, and seated him with himself, and bade him eat with him in the same dish, for he had deserved more that day than he had the first.

And the knight gave heed to that saying, and was abashed; howbeit he did as the Cid commanded him; and after he had dined he went to his lodging and began to think upon what the Cid had said unto him, and perceived that he had seen all the baseness which he had done; and then he understood that for this cause he would not let him sit at board with the other knights who were precious in arms, but had seated him with himself, more to affront him than to do him honour, for there were other knights there better than he, and he did not show them that honour. Then resolved he in his heart to do better than he had done heretofore.

Another day the Cid and his company and Martin Pelaez rode toward Valencia, and the Moors came out to the tourney full resolutely, and Martin Pelaez was among the first, and charged them right boldly; and he smote down and slew presently a good knight, and he lost there all the bad fear which he had had, and was that day one of the best knights there; and as long as the tourney lasted there he remained, smiting and slaying and overthrowing the Moors, till they were driven within the gates, in such manner that the Moors marveled at him, and asked where that devil came from, for they had never seen him before.

And the Cid was in a place where he could see all that was going on, and he gave good heed to him, and had great pleasure in beholding him, to see how well he had forgotten the great fear which he was wont to have. And when the Moors were shut up within the town, the Cid and all his people returned to their lodging, and Martin Pelaez full leisurely and quietly went to his lodging also, like a good knight.


And when it was the hour of eating, the Cid waited for Martin Pelaez; and when he came, and they had washed, the Cid took him by the hand and said, "My friend, you are not such a one as deserves to sit with me from henceforth, but sit you here with Don Alvar Fañez, and with these other good knights, for the good feats which you have done this day have made you a companion for them"; and from that day forward he was placed in the company of the good.

And the history saith that from that day forward this knight, Martin Pelaez, was a right good one, and a right valiant, and a right precious, in all places where he chanced among feats of arms, and he lived alway with the Cid, and served him right well and truly. And the history saith, that after the Cid had won the city of Valencia, on the day when they conquered and, discomfited the king of Seville, this Martin Pelaez was so good a one, that setting aside the body of the Cid himself, there was no such good knight there, nor one who bore such part, as well in the battle as in the pursuit. And so great was the mortality which he made among the Moors that day, that when he returned from the business the sleeves of his mail were clotted with blood, up to the elbow; insomuch that for what he did that day his name is written in this history, that it may never die.

And when the Cid saw him come in that guise, he did him great honour, such as he never had done to any knight before that day, and from thenceforward gave him a place in all his actions and in all his secrets, and he was his great friend. In this knight Martin Pelaez was fulfilled the example which saith, that he who betaketh himself to a good tree, hath good shade, and he who serves a good lord winneth good guerdon; for by reason of the good service which he did the Cid, he came to such good state that he was spoken of as ye have heard; for the Cid knew how to make a good knight, as a good groom knows how to make a good horse.


And my Cid lay before Alcocer fifteen weeks; and when he saw that the town did not surrender, he ordered his people to break up their camp, as if they were flying, and they left one of their tents behind them, and took their way along the Salon, with their banners spread. And when the Moors saw this they rejoiced greatly, and there was a great stir among them, and they praised themselves for what they had done in withstanding him, and said that the Cid's bread and barley had failed him, and he had fled away, and left one of his tents behind him. And they said among themselves, "Let us pursue them and spoil them, for if they of Teruel should be before us, the honour and the profit will be theirs, and we shall have nothing." And they went out after him, great and little, leaving the gates open and shouting as they went; and there was not left in the town a man who could bear arms.

And when my Cid saw them coming he gave orders to quicken their speed, as if he was in fear, and would not let his people turn till the Moors were far enough from the town. But when he saw that there was a good distance between them and the gates, then he bade his banner turn, and spurred towards them, crying, "Lay on, knights, by God's mercy the spoil is our own." God! what a good joy was theirs that morning! My Cid's vassals laid on without mercy—in one hour, and in a little space, three hundred Moors were slain, and the Cid and Alvar Fañez had good horses and got between them and the castle, and stood in the gateway sword in hand, and there was a great mortality among the Moors; and my Cid won the place, and Pero Bermudez planted his banner upon the highest point of the castle. And the Cid said, "Blessed be God and all his saints, we have bettered our quarters both for horses and men."

And he said to Alvar Fañez and all his knights, "Hear me, we shall get nothing by killing these Moors; let us take them and they shall show us their treasures which they have hidden in their houses, and we will dwell here and they shall serve us." In this manner did my Cid win Alcocer, and take up his abode therein.

Much did this trouble the Moors of Teca, and it did not please those of Teruel, nor of Calatayud. And they sent to the king of Valencia to tell him that one who was called Ruydiez the Cid, whom King Don Alfonso had banished, was come into their country, and had taken Alcocer; and if a stop were not put to him, the king might look upon Teca and Teruel and Calatayud as lost, for nothing could stand against him, and he had plundered the whole country, along the Salon on the one side, and the Siloca on the other. When the king of Valencia, whose name was Alcamin, heard this, he was greatly troubled; and incontinently he spake unto two Moorish kings, who were his vassals, bidding them take three thousand horsemen, and all the men of the border, and bring the Cid to him alive, that he might make atonement to him for having entered his land.

Fariz and Galve were the names of these two Moorish kings and they set out with companies of King Alcamin from Valencia, and halted the first night in Segorve, and the second night at Celfa de Canal. And they sent their messengers through the land to all the Councils thereof, ordering all men at arms, as well horsemen as footmen, to join them, and the third night they halted at Calatayud, and great numbers joined them; and they came up against Alcocer, and pitched their tents round about the castle. Every day their host increased, for their people were many in number, and their watchmen kept watch day and night; and my Cid had no succour to look for except the mercy of God, in which he put his trust. And the Moors beset them so close that they cut off their water, and albeit the Castillians would have sallied against them, my Cid forbade this. In this guise were my Cid and his people besieged for three weeks, and when the fourth week began, he called for Alvar Fañez, and for his company, and said unto them, "Ye see that the Moors have cut off our water, and we have but little bread; they gather numbers day by day, and we become weak, and they are in their own country. If we would depart they would not let us, and we cannot go out by night because they have beset us round about on all sides, and we cannot pass on high through the air, neither through the earth which is underneath. Now then, if it please you, let us go out and fight with them, though they are many in number, and either defeat them or die an honourable death."

Then Minaya answered and said, "We have left the gentle land of Castille, and are come hither as banished men, and if we do not beat the Moors they will not give us food*. Now though we are but few, yet are we of a good stock, and of one heart and one will; by God's help let us go out and smite them to-morrow, early in the morning, and you who are not in a state of penitence go and shrieve yourselves and repent ye of your sins." And they all held that what Alvar Fañez had said was good. And my Cid answered, "Minaya, you have spoken as you should do." Then ordered he all the Moors, both men and women, to be thrust out of the town, that it might not be known what they were preparing to do; and the rest of that day and the night also they passed in making ready for the battle. And on the morrow at sunrise the Cid gave his banner to Pero Bermudez, and bade him bear it boldly like a good man as he was, but he charged him not to thrust forward with it without his bidding. And Pero Bermudez kissed his hand, being well pleased. Then leaving only two foot soldiers to keep the gates, they issued out; and the Moorish scouts saw them and hastened to the camp. Then was there such a noise of tambours as if the earth would have been broken, and the Moors armed themselves in great haste. Two royal banners were there, and five city ones, and they drew up their men in two great bodies, and moved on, thinking to take my Cid and all his company alive; and my Cid bade his men remain still and not move till he should bid them.

Pero Bermudez could not bear this, but holding the banner in his hand, he cried, "God help you, Cid Campeador; I shall put your banner in the middle of that main body; and you who are bound to stand by it—I shall see how you will succour it." And he began to prick forward. And the Campeador called unto him to stop as he loved him, but Pero Bermudez replied he would stop for nothing, and away he spurred and carried his banner into the middle of the great body of the Moors. And the Moors fell upon him, that they might win the banner, and beset him on all sides, giving him many great blows to beat him down; nevertheless his arms were proof, and they could not pierce them, neither could they beat him down, nor force the banner from him, for he was a right brave man, and a strong, and a good horseman, and of great heart. And when the Cid saw him thus beset he called to his people to move on and help him. Then placed they their shields before their hearts, and lowered their lances with the streamers thereon, and bending forward, rode on. Three hundred lances were they, each with its pendant, and every man at the first charge slew his Moor. "Smite them, knights, for the love of charity," cried the Campeador. "I am Ruydiez, the Cid of Bivar!"

Many a shield was pierced that day, and many a false corselet was broken, and many a white streamer dyed with blood, and many a horse left without a rider. The Misbelievers called on Mahomet, and the Christians on Santiago, and the noise of the tambours and of the trumpets was so great that none could hear his neighbour. And my Cid and his company succoured Pero Bermudez, and they rode through the host of the Moors, slaying as they went, and they rode back again in like manner; thirteen hundred did they kill in this guise. Wherever my Cid went, the Moors made a path before him, for he smote them down without mercy. And while the battle still continued, the Moors killed the horse of Alvar Fañez, and his lance was broken, and he fought bravely with his sword afoot. And my Cid, seeing him, came up to an Alguazil who rode upon a good horse, and smote him with his sword under the right arm, so that he cut him through and through, and he gave the horse to Alvar Fañez saying, "Mount, Minaya, for you are my right hand."

When Alvar Fañez was thus remounted, they fell upon the Moors again, and by this time the Moors were greatly disheartened, having suffered so great loss, and they began to give way. And my Cid, seeing King Fariz, made towards him, smiting down all who were in his way; and he came up to him, and made three blows at him; two of them failed, but the third was a good one, and went through his cuirass, so that the blood ran down his legs. And with that blow was the army of the Moors vanquished, for King Fariz, feeling himself so sorely wounded, turned his reins and fled out of the field, even to Teruel. And Martin Antolinez, the good Burgalese, came up to King Galve, and gave him a stroke on the head, which scattered all the carbuncles out of his helmet, and cut through it even to the skin; and the king did not wait for another such, and he fled also. A good day was that for Christendom, for the Moors fled on all sides. King Fariz got into Teruel, and King Galve fled after him, but they would not receive him within the gates, and he went on to Calatayud. And the Christians pursued them even to Calatayud. And Alvar Fañez had a good horse; four and thirty did he slay in that pursuit with the edge of his keen sword, and his arm was all red, and the blood dropt from his elbow. And as he was returning from the spoil he said, "Now am I well pleased, for good tidings will go to Castille, how my Cid has won a battle in the field." My Cid also turned back; his coif was wrinkled, and you might see his full beard; the hood of his mail hung down upon his shoulders, and the sword was still in his hand. He saw his people returning from the pursuit, and that of all his company fifteen only of the lower sort were slain, and he gave thanks to God for this victory. Then they fell to the spoil, and they found arms in abundance, and great store of wealth; and five hundred and ten horses. And he divided the spoil, giving to each man his fair portion, and the Moors whom they had put out of Alcocer before the battle, they now received again into the castle, and gave to them also a part of the booty, so that all were well content. And my Cid had great joy with his vassals.

Then the Cid called unto Alvar Fañez and said, "Cousin, you are my right hand, and I hold it good that you should take of my fifth as much as you will, for all would be well bestowed upon you;" but Minaya thanked him, and said, that he would take nothing more than his share. And the Cid said unto him, "I will send King Don Alfonso a present from my part of the spoils. You shall go into Castille, and take with you thirty horses, the best which were taken from the Moors, all bridled and saddled, and each having a sword hanging from the saddle-bow; and you shall give them to the King, and kiss his hand for me, and tell him that we know how to make our way among the Moors. And you shall take also this bag of gold and silver, and purchase for me a thousand masses in Saint Mary's at Burgos, and hang up there these banners of the Moorish kings whom we hare overcome. Go then to Saint Pedro's at Cardena, and salute my wife Doña Ximena, and my daughters, and tell them how well I go on, and that if I live I will make them rich women. And salute for me the Abbot Don Sebuto, and give him fifty marks of silver; and the rest of the money, whatever shall be left, give to my wife, and bid them all pray for me." Moreover the Cid said unto him, "This country is all spoiled, and we have to help ourselves with sword and spear. You are going to gentle Castille; if when you return you should not find us here, you will hear where we are."


Alvar Fañez went his way to Castille, and he found the king in Valladolid, and he presented to him the thirty horses, with all their trappings, and swords mounted with silver hanging from the saddle-bows. And when the king saw them, before Alvar Fañez could deliver his bidding, he said unto him, "Minaya, who sends me this goodly present?" And Minaya answered, "My Cid Ruydiez, the Campeador, sends it, and kisses by me your hands. For since you were wroth against him, and banished him from the land, he being a man disherited, hath helped himself with his own hands, and hath won from the Moors the Castle of Alcocer. And the king of Valencia sent two kings to besiege him there, with all his power, and they begirt him round about, and cut off the water and bread from us so that we could not subsist. And then holding it better to die like good men in the field, than shut up like bad ones, we went out against them, and fought with them in the open field, and smote them and put them to flight; and both the Moorish kings were sorely wounded, and many of the Moors were slain, and many were taken prisoners, and great was the spoil which we won in the field, both of captives and of horses and arms, gold and silver and pearls, so that all who are with him are rich men. And of his fifth of the horses which were taken that day, my Cid hath sent you these, as to his natural lord, whose favour he desireth. I beseech you, as God shall help you, show favour unto him."

Then King Don Alfonso answered, "This is betimes in the morning for a banished man to ask favour of his lord; nor is it befitting a king, for no lord ought to be wroth for so short a time. Nevertheless, because the horses were won from the Moors, I will take them, and rejoice that my Cid hath sped so well. And I pardon you, Minaya, and give again unto you all the lands which you have ever held of me, and you have my favour to go when you will, and come when you will. Of the Cid Campeador, I shall say nothing now, save only that all who chuse to follow him may freely go, and their bodies and goods and heritages are safe." And Minaya said, "God grant you many and happy years for his service. Now I beseech you, this which you have done for me, do also to all those who are in my Cid's company, and show favour unto them." And the king gave order that it should be so. Then Minaya kissed the king's hand and said, "Sir, you have done this now, and you will do the rest hereafter."

In three weeks time after this came Alvar Fañez from Castille. Two hundred men of lineage came with him, every one of whom wore sword girt to his side, and the foot soldiers in their company were out of number. When my Cid saw Minaya he rode up to him, and embraced him without speaking, and kissed his mouth and the eyes in his head. And Minaya told him all that he had done. And the face of the Campeador brightened, and he gave thanks to God, and said, "It will go well with me, Minaya, as long as you, live!" God, how joyful was that whole host because Alvar Fañez was returned! for he brought them greetings from their kinswomen and their brethren, and the fair comrades whom they had left behind. God, how joyful was my Cid with the fleecy beard, that Minaya had purchased the thousand masses, and had brought him the biddings of his wife and daughters! God, what a joyful man was he!


When Don Ramon Berenguer the Count of Barcelona heard how my Cid was overrunning the country, it troubled him to the heart, and he held it for a great dishonour, because that part of the land of the Moors was in his keeping. And he spake boastfully, saying, "Great wrong doth that Cid of Bivar offer unto me; he smote my nephew in my own court and never would make amends for it, and now he ravages the lands which are in my keeping, and I have never defied him for this nor renounced his friendship; but since he goes on in this way I must take vengeance." So he and King Abenalfange gathered together a great power both of Moors and Christians, and went in pursuit of the Cid, and after three days and two nights they came up with him in the pine-forest of Tebar, and they came on confidently, thinking to lay hands on him. Now my Cid was returning with much spoil, and had descended from the Sierra into the valley when tidings were brought him that Count Don Ramon Berenguer and the King of Denia were at hand, with a great power, to take away his booty, and take or slay him. And when the Cid heard this he sent to Don Ramon saying, that the booty which he had won was none of his, and bidding him let him go on his way in peace; but the Count made answer, that my Cid should now learn whom he had dishonoured, and make amends once for all.

Then my Cid sent the booty forward, and bade his knights make ready. "They are coming upon us," said he, "with a great power, both of Moors and Christians, to take from us the spoils which we have so hardly won, and without doing battle we cannot be quit of them; for if we should proceed they would follow till they overtook us; therefore let the battle he here, and I trust in God that we shall win more honour, and something to boot. They came down the hill, drest in their hose, with their gay saddles, and their girths wet; we are with our hose covered and on our Galician saddles; a hundred such as we ought to beat their whole company. Before they get upon the plain ground let us give them the points of our lances; for one whom we run through, three will jump out of their saddles; and Ramon Berenguer will then see whom he has overtaken to-day in the pine-forest of Tebar, thinking to despoil him of the booty which I have won from the enemies of God and of the faith."

While my Cid was speaking, his knights had taken their arms, and were ready on horseback for the charge. Presently they saw the pendants of the Frenchmen coming down the hill, and when they were nigh the bottom, my Cid bade his people charge, which they did with a right good will, thrusting their spears so stiffly that by God's good pleasure not a man whom they encountered but lost his seat. So many were slain and so many wounded that the Moors were dismayed forthwith, and began to fly. The Count's people stood firm a little longer, gathering round their Lord; but my Cid was in search of him, and when he saw where he was, he made up to him, clearing the way as he went, and gave him such a stroke with his lance that he felled him down to the ground. When the Frenchmen saw their Lord in this plight they fled away and left him; and the pursuit lasted three leagues, and would have been continued farther if the conquerors had not had tired horses. So they turned back and collected the spoils, which were more than they could carry away. Thus was Count Ramon Berenguer made prisoner, and my Cid won from him that day the good sword Colada, which was worth more than a thousand marks of silver.

That night did my Cid and his men make merry, rejoicing over their gains. And the Count was taken to my Cid's tent, and a good supper was set before him; nevertheless he would not eat, though my Cid besought him so to do. And on the morrow my Cid ordered a feast to be made, that he might do pleasure to the Count, but the Count said that for all Spain he would not eat one mouthful, but rather die, since he had been beaten in battle by such a set of ragged fellows.

And Ruydiez said to him, "Eat and drink, Count, of this bread and of this wine, for this is the chance of war; if you do as I say you shall be free; and if not you will never return again into your own lands." And Don Ramon answered, "Eat you, Don Rodrigo, for your fortune is fair and you deserve it; take you your pleasure, but leave me to die." And in this mood he continued for three days, refusing all food.

But then my Cid said to him, "Take food, Count, and be sure that I will set you free, you and any two of your knights, and give you wherewith to return into your own country." And when Don Ramon heard this, he took comfort and said, "If you will indeed do this thing I shall marvel at you as long as I live." "Eat then," said Ruydiez, "and I will do it; but mark you, of the spoil which we have taken from you I will give you nothing; for to that you have no claim, neither by right nor custom, and besides we want it for ourselves, being banished men, who must live by taking from you and from others as long as it shall please God."

Then was the Count full joyful, being well pleased that what should be given him was not of the spoils which he had lost; and he called for water and washed his hands, and chose two of his kinsmen to be set free with him; the one was named Don Hugo, and the other Guillen Bernalto.

And my Cid sate at the table with them, and said, "If you do not eat well, Count, you and I shall not part yet." Never since he was Count did he eat with better will than that day! And when they had done he said, "Now, Cid, if it be your pleasure let us depart." And my Cid clothed him and his kinsmen well with goodly skins and mantles, and gave them each a goodly palfrey, with rich caparisons, and he rode out with them on their way. And when he took leave of the Count he said to him, "Now go freely, and I thank you for what you have left behind; if you wish to play for it again let me know, and you shall either have something back in its stead, or leave what you bring to be added to it."

The Count answered, "Cid, you jest safely now, for I have paid you and all your company for this twelvemonths, and shall not be coming to see you again so soon."

Then Count Ramon pricked on more than apace, and many times looked behind him, fearing that my Cid would repent what he had done, and send to take him back to prison, which the Perfect one would not have done for the whole world, for never did he do disloyal thing.


Now Zulema had sent for my Cid, and the cause was this. His brother, the King of Denia, had taken counsel with Count Ramon Berenguer, and with the Count of Cardona, and with the brother of the Count of Urgel, and with the chiefs of Balsadron and Remolin and Cartaxes, that they should besiege the Castle of Almenar, which my Cid had fortified by command of King Zulema. And they came up against it while my Cid was away, besieging the Castle of Estrada, which is in the rivers Tiegio and Sege, the which he took by force. And they fought against it and cut off the water. And when my Cid came to the king at Tamarit, the king asked him to go and fight with the host which besieged Almenar; but my Cid said it would be better to give something to King Abenalfange that he should break up the siege and depart; for they were too great a power to do battle with, being as many in number as the sands on the sea shore. And the King did as he counselled him, and sent to his brother King Abenalfange, and to the chiefs who were with him, to propose this accord, and they would not.

Then my Cid, seeing that they would not depart for fair means, armed his people, and fell upon them. That was a hard battle and well fought on both sides, and much blood was shed, for many good knights on either party were in the field; howbeit he of good fortune won the day at last, he who never was conquered. King Abenalfange and Count Ramon and most of the others fled, and my Cid followed, smiting and slaying for three leagues; and many good Christian knights were made prisoners. Ruydiez returned with great honour and much spoil, and gave all his prisoners to King Zulema, who kept them eight days, and then my Cid begged their liberty and set them free. And he and the king returned to Zaragoza, and the people came out to meet them, with great joy, and shouts of welcome. And the king honoured my Cid greatly, and gave him power in all his dominions.

At this time it came to pass that Almofalez, a Moor of Andalusia, rose up with the Castle of Rueda, which was held for King Don Alfonso. And because he held prisoner there the brother of Adefir, another Moor, Adefir sent to the King of Castille, beseeching him to come to succour him, and recover the Castle. And the King sent the Infante Don Ramiro his cousin, and the Infante Don Sancho, son to the King of Navarre, and Count Don Gonzalo Salvadores, and Count Don Nuño Alvarez, and many other knights with them: and they came to the Castle, and Almofalez said he would not open the gates to them, but if the king came he would open to him. And when King Don Alfonso heard this, incontinently he came to Rueda. And Almofalez besought him to enter to a feast which he had prepared; howbeit the King would not go in, neither would his people have permitted him so to have risked his person. But the Infante Don Sancho entered, and Don Nuño, and Don Ganzalo, and fifteen other knights; and as soon as they were within the gate, the Moors threw down great stones upon them and killed them all. This was the end of the good Count Don Gonzalo Salvadores, who was so good a knight in battle that he was called "He of the Four Hands." The bodies were ransomed, seeing that there was no remedy, the Castle being so strong, and Don Gonzalo was buried in the Monastery of Ona, according as he had appointed in his will; and the Infante Don Sancho with his forefathers the Kings of Navarre, in the royal Monastery of Naxara.

Greatly was King Don Alfonso troubled at this villainy, and he sought for the Cid, who was in those parts; and the Cid came to him with a great company. And the king told him the great treason which had been committed, and took the Cid into his favour, and said unto him that he might return with him into Castille. My Cid thanked him for his bounty, but he said he never would accept his favour unless the king granted what he should request; and the king bade him make his demand. And my Cid demanded that when any hidalgo should be banished, in time to come, he should have the thirty days, which were his right, allowed him, and not nine only, as had been his case; and that neither hidalgo nor citizen should be proceeded against till they had been fairly and lawfully heard: also, that the king should not go against the privileges and charters and good customs of any town or other place, nor impose taxes upon them against their right; and if he did, that it should be lawful for the land to rise against him, till he had amended the misdeed.

And to all this the king accorded, and said to my Cid that he should go back into Castille with him; but my Cid said he would not go into Castille till he had won that castle of Rueda, and delivered the villainous Moors thereof into his hands, that he might do justice upon them.

So the king thanked him greatly, and returned into Castille, and my Cid remained before the castle of Rueda. And he lay before it so long, and beset it so close, that the food of the Moors failed, and they had no strength to defend themselves; and they would willingly have yielded the castle, so they might have been permitted to leave it and go whither they would; but he would have their bodies, to deliver them up to the king. When they saw that it must be so, great part of them came out, and yielded themselves prisoners; and then my Cid stormed the castle and took Almofalez and them who held with him, so that none escaped; and he sent him and his accomplices in the treason to the king. And the king was right glad when they were brought before him, and he did great justice upon them, and sent to thank my Cid for having avenged him.

[Illustration: The Defeat of Almofalez]

After my Cid had done this good service to King Don Alfonso, he and King Zulema of Zaragoza entered Aragon, slaying, and burning, and plundering before them, and they returned to the Castle of Monzon with great booty. Then the Cid went into King Abenalfange's country, and did much mischief there: and he got among the mountains of Moriella, and beat down everything before him, and destroyed the Castle of Moriella. And King Zulema sent to bid him build up the ruined Castle of Alcala, which is upon Moriella; and the Cid did so. But King Abenalfange, being sorely grieved hereat, sent to King Pedro of Aragon, and besought him to come and help him against the Campeador. And the king of Aragon gathered together a great host in his anger, and he and the king of Denia came against my Cid, and they halted that night upon the banks of the Ebro; and King Don Pedro sent letters to the Cid, bidding him leave the castle which he was then edifying. My Cid made answer, that if the king chose to pass that way in peace, he would let him pass, and show him any service in his power. And when the king of Aragon saw that he would not forsake the work, he marched against him, and attacked him. Then there was a brave battle, and many were slain; but my Cid won the day, and King Abenalfange fled, and King Don Pedro was taken prisoner, and many of his counts and knights with him. My Cid returned to Zaragoza with this great honour, taking his prisoners with him; and he set them all freely at liberty, and having tarried in Zaragoza a few days, set forth for Castille, with great riches and full of honours.

Having done all these things in his banishment, my Cid returned to Castille, and the king received him well and gave him the Castle of Dueñas, and of Orcejon, and Ybia, and Campo, and Gaña, and Berviesca, and Berlanga, with all their districts. And he gave him privileges with leaden seals appendant, and confirmed with his own hand, that whatever castles, towns, and places he might win from the Moors, or from any one else, should be his own, quit and free for ever, both for him and for his descendants. Thus was my Cid received into the king's favour, and he abode with him long time, doing him great services, as his Lord.


It is written in the history which Abenalfarax, the nephew of Gil Diaz, composed in Valencia, that for five years the Cid Ruydiez remained Lord thereof in peace, and in all that time he sought to do nothing but to serve God, and to keep the Moors quiet who were under his dominion; so that Moors and Christians dwelt together in such accord that it seemed as if they had always been united; and they all loved and served the Cid with such good will that it was marvelous. And when these five years were over tidings were spread far and near, which reached Valencia, that King Bucar, the Miramamolin of Morocco, holding himself disgraced because the Cid Campeador had conquered him in the field of Quarto near unto Valencia, where he had slain or made prisoners all his people, and driven him into the sea, and made spoil of all his treasures—King Bucar calling these things to mind, had gone himself and stirred up the whole Paganism of Barbary to cross the sea again, and avenge himself if he could; and he had assembled so great a power that no man could devise their numbers.

When the Cid heard these tidings he was troubled at heart; howbeit he dissembled this, so that no person knew what he was minded to do; and thus the matter remained for some days. And when he saw that the news came thicker and faster, and that it was altogether certain that King Bucar was coming over sea against him, he sent and bade all the Moors of Valencia assemble together in his presence, and when they were all assembled he said unto them, "Good men of the Aljama, ye well know that from the day wherein I became Lord of Valencia, ye have always been protected and defended, and have past your time well and peaceably in your houses and heritages, none troubling you nor doing you wrong; neither have I who am your Lord ever done aught unto you that was against right. And now true tidings are come to me that King Bucar of Morocco is arrived from beyond sea, with a mighty power of Moors, and that he is coming against me to take from me this city which I won with so great labour. Now therefore, seeing it is so, I hold it good and command that ye quit the town, both ye and your sons and your women, and go into the suburb of Alcudia and the other suburbs, to dwell there with the other Moors, till we shall see the end of this business between me and King Bucar." Then the Moors, albeit they were loath, obeyed his command: and when they were all gone out of the city, so that none remained, he held himself safer than he had done before.

Now after the Moors were all gone out of the city, it came to pass in the middle of the night that the Cid was lying in his bed, devising how he might withstand this coming of King Bucar, for Abenalfarax saith that when he was alone in his palace his thoughts were of nothing else. And when it was midnight there came a great light into the palace, and a great odour, marvelous sweet. And as he was marveling what it might he, there appeared before him a man as white as snow; he was in the likeness of an old man, with gray hair and crisp, and he carried certain keys in his hand; and before the Cid could speak to him he said, "Sleepest thou, Rodrigo, or what art thou doing?" And the Cid made answer, "What man art thou who askest me?" And he said, "I am Peter, the Prince of the Apostles, who come unto thee with more urgent tidings than those for which thou art taking thought concerning King Bucar, and it is, that thou art to leave this world, and go to that which hath no end; and this will be in thirty days. But God will show favour unto thee, so that thy people shall discomfit King Bucar, and thou, being dead, shalt win this battle for the honour of thy body: this will be with the help of Santiago, whom God will send to the business; but do thou strive to make atonement for thy sins, and so thou shalt be saved. All this Jesus Christ vouchsafeth thee for the love of me, and for the reverence which thou hast alway shown to my Church."

When the Cid Campeador heard this he had great pleasure at heart, and he let himself fall out of bed upon the earth, that he might kiss the feet of the Apostle St. Peter; but the Apostle said, "Strive not to do this, for thou canst not touch me; but be sure that all this which I have told thee will come to pass." And when the blessed Apostle had said this he disappeared, and the palace remained full of a sweeter and more delightful odour than heart of man can conceive. And the Cid Ruydiez remained greatly comforted by what St. Peter had said to him, and as certain that all this would come to pass, as if it were already over.

Early on the morrow he sent to call all his honourable men to the Alcazar; and when they were all assembled before him, he began to say unto them, weeping the while, "Friends and kinsmen and true vassals and honourable men, many of ye must well remember when King Don Alfonso our Lord twice banished me from this land, and most of ye for the love which ye bore me followed me into banishment, and have guarded me ever since. And God hath shown such mercy to you and to me, that we have won many battles against Moors and Christians; those which were against Christians, God knows, were more through their fault than my will, for they strove to set themselves against the good fortune which God had given me, and to oppose his service, helping the enemies of the faith. Moreover we won this city in which we dwell, which is not under the dominion of any man in the world, save only my Lord the King Don Alfonso, and that rather by reason of our natural allegiance than of anything else. And now I would have ye know the state in which this body of mine now is; for be ye certain that I am in the latter days of my life, and that thirty days hence will be my last. Of this I am well assured; for for these seven nights past I have seen visions. I have seen my father Diego Laynez and Diego Rodriguez my son; and every time they say to me, 'You have tarried long here, let us go now among the people who endure for ever.' Now, notwithstanding man ought not to put his trust in these things, nor in such visions, I know this by other means to be certain, for Sir St. Peter hath appeared to me this night, when I was awake and not sleeping, and he told me that when these thirty days were over I should pass away from this world. Now ye know for certain that King Bucar is coming against us, and they say that thirty and six Moorish kings are coming with him; and since he bringeth so great a power of Moors and I have to depart so soon, how can ye defend Valencia! But be ye certain, that by the mercy of God I shall counsel ye so that ye shall conquer King Bucar in the field, and win great praise and honour from him, and Doña Ximena, and ye and all that ye have, go hence in safety; how ye are to do all this I will tell ye hereafter, before I depart."

After the Cid said this he sickened of the malady of which he died. And the day before his weakness waxed great, he ordered the gates of the town to be shut, and went to the Church of St. Peter; and there the Bishop Don Hieronymo being present, and all the clergy who were in Valencia, and the knights and honourable men and honourable dames, as many as the Church could hold, the Cid Ruydiez stood up, and made a full noble preaching, showing that no man whatsoever, however honourable or fortunate they may be in this world, can escape death; "to which," said he, "I am now full near; and since ye know that this body of mine hath never yet been conquered, nor put to shame, I beseech ye let not this befall it at the end, for the good fortune of man is only accomplished at his end. How this is to be done, and what we all have to do, I will leave in the hands of the Bishop of Don Hieronymo, and Alvar Fañez, and Pero Bermudez." And when he had said this he placed himself at the feet of the Bishop, and there before all the people made a general confession of all his sins, and all the faults which he had committed against our Lord Jesus Christ. And the Bishop appointed him his penance and assoyled him of his sins.

Then he arose and took leave of the people, weeping plenteously, and returned to the Alcazar, and betook himself to his bed, and never rose from it again; and every day he waxed weaker and weaker, till seven days only remained of the time appointed. Then he called for the caskets of gold in which was the balsam and the myrrh which the Soldan of Persia had sent him; and when these were put before him he bade them bring him the golden cup, of which he was wont to drink; and he took of that balsam and of that myrrh as much as a little spoonful, and mingled it in the cup with rose-water and drank of it; and for the seven days which he lived he neither ate nor drank aught else than a little of that myrrh and balsam mingled with water. And every day after he did this, his body and his countenance appeared fairer and fresher than before, and his voice clearer, though he waxed weaker and weaker daily, so that he could not move in his bed.

On the twenty-ninth day, being the day before he departed, he called for Dona Ximena, and for the Bishop Don Hieronymo, and Don Alvar Fañez Minaya, and Pero Bermudez, and his trusty Gil Diaz; and when they were all five before him, he began to direct them what they should do after his death; and he said to them:

"Ye know that King Bucar will presently be here to besiege this city, with seven and thirty Kings, whom he bringeth with him, and with a mighty power of Moors.

"Now, therefore, the first thing which ye do after I have departed, wash my body with rose-water many times and well, as blessed be the name of God it is washed within and made pure of all uncleanness to receive his holy body to-morrow, which will be my last day. And when it has been well washed and made clean, ye shall dry it well, and anoint it with this myrrh and balsam, from these golden caskets, from head to foot, so that every part shall be anointed, till none be left.

"And you my Sister Doña Ximena, and your women, see that ye utter no cries, neither make any lamentation for me, that the Moors may not know of my death. And when the day shall come in which King Bucar arrives, order all the people of Valencia to go upon the walls, and sound your trumpets and tambours, and make the greatest rejoicings that ye can.

"And when ye would set out for Castille, let all the people know in secret, that they make themselves ready, and take with them all that they have, so that none of the Moors in the suburb may know thereof; for certes ye cannot keep the city, neither abide therein after my death. And see ye that sumpter beasts be laden with all that there is in Valencia, so that nothing which can profit may be left. And this I leave especially to your charge, Gil Diaz.

"Then saddle ye my horse Bavieca, and arm him well; and ye shall apparel my body full seemlily, and place me upon the horse, and fasten and tie me thereon so that it cannot fall; and fasten my sword Tizona in my hand. And let the Bishop Don Hieronymo go on one side of me, and my trusty Gil Diaz on the other, and he shall lead my horse. You, Pero Bermudez, shall bear my banner, as you were wont to bear it; and you, Alvar Fañez, my cousin, gather your company together, and put the host in order as you are wont to do. And go ye forth and fight with King Bucar; for be ye certain and doubt not that ye shall win this battle; God hath granted me this. And when ye have won the fight, and the Moors are discomfited, ye may spoil the field at pleasure. Ye will find great riches."

Then the Cid Ruydiez, the Campeador of Bivar, bade the Bishop Don Hieronymo give him the body of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, and he received it with great devotion, on his knees, and weeping before them all.

Then he sate up in his bed and called upon God and St. Peter, and began to pray, saying, "Lord Jesus Christ, thine is the power, and the kingdom, and thou art above all kings and all nations, and all kings are at thy command. I beseech ye, therefore, pardon me my sins and let my soul enter into the light which hath no end."

And when the Cid Ruydiez had said this, he yielded up his soul, which was pure and without spot, to God, on that Sunday which is called Quinquagesima, being the twenty and ninth of May, in the year of our Lord one thousand and ninety and nine, and in the seventy and third year of his life.


Three days after the Cid had departed King Bucar came into the port of Valencia, and landed with all his power, which was so great that there is not a man in the world who could give account of the Moors whom he brought. And there came with him thirty and six kings, and one Moorish queen, who was a negress, and she brought with her two hundred horsewomen, all negresses like herself, all having their hair shorn save a tuft on the top, and this was in token that they came as if upon a pilgrimage, and to obtain the remission of their sins; and they were all armed in coats of mail and with Turkish bows. King Bucar ordered his tents to be pitched round about Valencia, and Abenalfarax, who wrote this history in Arabic, saith that there were full fifteen thousand tents; and he bade that Moorish negress with her archers to take their station near the city.

And on the morrow they began to attack the city, and they fought against it three days strenuously, and the Moors received great loss, for they came blindly up to the walls and were slain there. And the Christians defended themselves right well; and every time that they went upon the walls, they sounded trumpets and tambours, and made great rejoicings, as the Cid had commanded. This continued for eight days or nine, till the companions of the Cid had made ready everything for their departure, as he had commanded. And King Bucar and his people thought that the Cid dared not come out against them; and they were the more encouraged and began to think of making bastiles and engines wherewith to combat the city, for certes they weened that the Cid Ruydiez dared not come out against them, seeing that he tarried so long. All this while the company of the Cid were preparing all things to go into Castille, as he had commanded before his death; and his trusty Gil Diaz did nothing else but labour at this. And the body of the Cid was prepared after this manner: first it was embalmed and anointed as the history hath already recounted, and the virtue of the balsam and myrrh was such that the flesh remained firm and fair, having its natural color, and his countenance as it was wont to be, and the eyes open, and his long beard in order, so that there was not a man who would have thought him dead if he had seen him and not known it.

And on the second day after he had departed, Gil Diaz placed the body upon a right noble saddle, and this saddle with the body upon it he put upon a frame; and he dressed the body in a gambax of fine sendal, next the skin. And he took two boards and fitted them to the body, one to the breast and the other to the shoulders; these were so hollowed out and fitted that they met at the sides and under the arms, and the hind one came up to the pole, and the other up to the beard; and these boards were fastened into the saddle, so that the body could not move. All this was done by the morning of the twelfth day; and all that day the people of the Cid were busied in making ready their arms, and in loading beasts with all that they had, so that they left nothing of any price in the whole city of Valencia, save only the empty houses. When it was midnight they took the body of the Cid, fastened to the saddle as it was, and placed it upon his horse Bavieca, and fastened the saddle well; and the body sat so upright and well that it seemed as if he was alive. And it had on painted hose of black and white, so cunningly painted that no man who saw them would have thought but that they were greaves and cuishes, unless he had laid his hand upon them, and they put on it a surcoat of green sendal, having his arms blazoned thereon, and a helmet of parchment, which was cunningly painted that every one might have believed it to be iron; and his shield was hung round his neck, and they placed the sword Tizona in his hand, and they raised his arm, and fastened it up so subtilely that it was a marvel to see how upright he held the sword. And the Bishop Don Hieronymo went on one side of him, and the trusty Gil Diaz on the other, and he led the horse Bavieca, as the Cid had commanded him.


And when all this had been made ready, they went out from Valencia at midnight, through the gate of Roseros, which is towards Castille. Pero Bermudez went first with the banner of the Cid, and with him five hundred knights who guarded it, all well appointed. And after these came all the baggage. Then came the body of the Cid, with an hundred knights, all chosen men, and behind them Doña Ximena with all her company, with six hundred knights in the rear. All these went out so silently, and with such a measured pace, that it seemed as if there were only a score. And by the time that they had all gone out it was broad day.

Now Alvar Fañez Minaya had set the host in order, and while the Bishop Don Hieronymo and Gil Diaz led away the body of the Cid, and Doña Ximena, and the baggage, he fell upon the Moors. First, he attacked the tents of that Moorish queen, the negress, who lay nearest to the city; and this onset was so sudden, that they killed full a hundred and fifty Moors before they had time to take arms or go to horse. But that Moorish negress was so skillful in drawing the Turkish bow, that it was held for a marvel; and it is said that they called her in Arabic Nugueymat Turya, which is to say, the Star of the Archers. And she was the first that got on horseback, and with some fifty that were with her, did some hurt to the company of the Cid; but in time they slew her, and her people fled to the camp. And so great was the uproar and confusion, that few there were who took arms, but instead thereof they turned their backs and fled toward the sea.

And when King Bucar and his kings saw this, they were astonished. And it seemed to them that there came against them on the part of the Christians full seventy thousand knights, all as white as snow; and before them a knight of great stature, upon a white horse with a bloody cross, who bore in one hand a white banner, and in the other a sword which seemed to be of fire, and he made a great mortality among the Moors who were flying. And King Bucar and the other kings were so greatly dismayed that they never checked the reins till they had ridden into the sea; and the company of the Cid rode after them, smiting and slaying and giving them no respite; and they smote down so many that it was marvelous, for the Moors did not turn their heads to defend themselves. And when they came to the sea, so great was the press among them to get to the ships, that more than ten-thousand died in the water. And of the six and thirty kings, twenty and two were slain. And King Bucar and they who escaped with him hoisted sails and went their way.

Then Alvar Fañez and his people, when they had discomfited the Moors, spoiled the field, and the spoil thereof was so great that they could not carry it away. And they loaded camels and horses with the noblest things which they found, and went after the Bishop Don Hieronymo and Gil Diaz, who, with the body of the Cid, and Doña Ximena, and the baggage, had gone on till they were clear of the host, and then waited for those who were gone against the Moors. And so great was the spoil of that day, that there was no end to it: and they took up gold, and silver, and other precious things as they rode through the camp, so that the poorest man among the Christians, horseman or on foot, became rich with what he won that day.


On the third day after the coming of King Don Alfonso, they would have interred the body of the Cid; but when the king heard what Doña Ximena had said, that while it was so fair and comely it should not be laid in a coffin, he held that what she said was good. And he sent for the ivory chair which had been carried to the Cortes of Toledo, and gave order that it should be placed on the right of the altar of St. Peter; and he laid a cloth of gold upon it, and upon that placed a cushion covered with a right noble tartari, and he ordered a graven tabernacle to be made over the chair, richly wrought with azure and gold, having thereon the blazonry of the kings of Castille and Leon, and the king of Navarre, and the Infante of Aragon, and of the Cid Ruydiez the Campeador. And he himself, and the king of Navarre, and the Infante of Aragon, and the Bishop Don Hieronymo, to do honor to the Cid, helped to take his body from between the two boards, in which it had been fastened at Valencia. And when they had taken it out, the body was so firm that it bent not on either side, and the flesh so firm and comely, that is seemed as if he were yet alive. And the king thought that what they purported to do and had thus begun, might full well be effected. And they clad the body in a full noble tartari, and in cloth of purple, which the Soldan of Persia had sent him, and put him on hose of the same, and set him in his ivory chair; and in his left hand they placed his sword Tizona in its scabbard, and the strings of his mantle in his right. And in this fashion the body of the Cid remained there ten years and more, till it was taken thence, as the history will relate anon. And when his garments waxed old, other good ones were put on.

Now Don Garcia Tellez, the abbot, and the trusty Gil Diaz, were wont every year to make a great festival on the day of the Cid's departure, and on that anniversary they gave food and clothing to the poor, who came from all parts round about. And it came to pass when they made the seventh anniversary, that a great multitude assembled as they were wont to do, and many Moors and Jews came to see the strange manner of the Cid's body. And it was the custom of the abbot Don Garcia Tellez, when they made that anniversary, to make a right noble sermon to the people: and because the multitude which had assembled was so great that the church could not hold them, they went out into the open place before the monastery, and he preached unto them there.

And while he was preaching there remained a Jew in the church, who stopped before the body of the Cid, looking at him to see how nobly he was there seated, having his countenance so fair and comely, and his long beard in such goodly order, and his sword Tizona in its scabbard in his left hand, and the strings of his mantle in his right, even in such manner as King Don Alfonso had left him, save only that the garments had been changed, it being now seven years since the body had remained there in that ivory chair. Now there was not a man in the church save this Jew, for all the others were hearing the preachment which the abbot made. And when this Jew perceived that he was alone, he began to think within himself and say, "This is the body of that Ruydiez the Cid, whom they say no man in the world ever took by the beard while he lived. . . . I will take him by the beard now, and see what he can do to me." And with that he put forth his hand to pull the beard of the Cid; . . . but before his hand could reach it, God who would not suffer this thing to be done, sent his spirit into the body, and the Cid let the strings of his mantle go from his right hand, and laid hand on his sword Tizona, and drew it a full palm's length out of the scabbard.

And when the Jew saw this, he fell upon his back for great fear, and began to cry out so loudly, that all they who were without the church heard him, and the abbot broke off his preachment and went into the church to see what it might be. And when they came they found this Jew lying upon his back before the ivory chair, like one dead, for he had ceased to cry out, and had swooned away. And then the Abbot Don Garcia Tellez looked at the body of the Cid, and saw that his right hand was upon the hilt of the sword, and that he had drawn it out a full palm's length; and he was greatly amazed.

And he called for holy water, and threw it in the face of the Jew, and with that the Jew came to himself.

Then the abbot asked him what all this meant, and he told him the whole truth; and he knelt down upon his knees before the abbot, and besought him of his mercy that he would make a Christian of him, because of this great miracle which he had seen, and baptize him in the name of Jesus Christ, for he would live and die in his faith, holding all other to be but error. And the abbot baptized him in the name of the Holy Trinity, and gave him to name Diego Gil.

And all who were there present were greatly amazed, and they made a great outcry and great rejoicings to God for this miracle, and for the power which he had shown through the body of the Cid in this manner; for it was plain that what the Jew said was verily and indeed true, because the posture of the Cid was changed. And from that day forward Diego Gil remained in the monastery as long as he lived, doing service to the body of the Cid.

After that day the body of the Cid remained in the same posture, for they never took his hand off the sword, nor changed his garments more, and thus it remained three years longer, till it had been there ten years in all. And then the nose began to change color. And when the Abbot Don Garcia Tellez and Gil Diaz saw this, they weened that it was no longer fitting for the body to remain in that manner. And three bishops from the neighbouring provinces met there, and with many masses and vigils, and great honour, they interred the body after this manner. They dug a vault before the altar, beside the grave of Doña Ximena, and vaulted it over with a high arch; and there they placed the body of the Cid, seated as it was in the ivory chair, and in his garments, and with the sword in his hand, and they hung up his shield and his banner upon the walls.


By Oliver Goldsmith

Good people all, of every sort,
  Give ear unto my song;
And if you find it wondrous short,
  It cannot hold you long.

In Islington there was a Man,
  Of whom the world might say,
That still a godly race he ran,
  Whene'er he went to pray.

A kind and gentle heart he had,
  To comfort friends and foes,
The naked every day he clad,
  When he put on his clothes.

And in that town a Dog was found,
  As many dogs there be,
Both mongrel, puppy, whelp, and hound,
  And curs of low degree.

This Dog and Man at first were friends;
  But when a pique began,
  The Dog, to gain some private ends,
    Went mad and bit the Man.

  Around from all the neighboring streets
    The wond'ring neighbors ran,
  And swore the Dog had lost his wits,
    To bite so good a Man.

  The wound it seem'd both sore and sad
     To every Christian eye;
  And while they swore the Dog was mad,
    They swore the Man would die.

  But soon a wonder came to light,
    That show'd the rogues they lied:
  The Man recover'd of the bite,
    The Dog it was that died.

[Footnote: From Father Ryan's Poems, copyright by P. J. Kennedy &
Sons, N. Y.


  Oft within our little cottage,
    As the shadows gently fall,
  While the sunlight touches softly
    One sweet face upon the wall,
  Do we gather close together,
    And in hushed and tender tone
  Ask each other's full forgiveness
    For the wrong that each has done.
  Should you wonder why this custom
    At the ending of the day,
  Eye and voice would quickly answer:
    "It was once our mother's way."

  If our home be bright and cheery,
    If it holds a welcome true,
  Opening wide its door of greeting
    To the many—not the few;
  If we share our father's bounty
    With the needy day by day,
  'Tis because our hearts remember
    This was ever mother's way.

  Sometimes when our hands grow weary,
    Or our tasks seem very long;
  When our burdens look too heavy,
    And we deem the right all wrong;
  Then we gain a new, fresh courage,
    And we rise to proudly say:
  "Let us do our duty bravely—
    This was our dear mother's way."

  Then we keep her memory precious,
    While we never cease to pray
  That at last, when lengthening shadows
    Mark the evening of our day,
  They may find us waiting calmly
    To go home our mother's way.



  I come from haunts of coot and hern,
    I make a sudden sally
  And sparkle out among the fern,
    To bicker down a valley.

  By thirty hills I hurry down,
    Or slip between the ridges,
  By twenty thorps, a little town,
    And half a hundred bridges.

  Till last by Philip's farm I flow
    To join the brimming river,
  For men may come and men may go,
    But I go on forever.

  I chatter over stony ways;
    In little sharps and trebles,
  I bubble into eddying bays,
    I babble on the pebbles.

  With many a curve my banks I fret
    By many a field and fallow,
  And many a fairy foreland set
    With willow-weed and mallow.

  I chatter, chatter, as I flow
    To join the brimming river;
  For men may come and men may go,
    But I go on forever.

  I wind about, and in and out,
    With here a blossom sailing,
  And here and there a lusty trout,
    And here and there a grayling,

  And here and there a foamy flake
    Upon me, as I travel
  With many a silvery waterbreak
    Above the golden gravel,

  And draw them all along, and flow
    To join the brimming river;
  For men may come and men may go,
    But I go on forever.

  I steal by lawns and grassy plots,
    I slide by hazel covers;
  I move the sweet forget-me-nots
    That grow for happy lovers.

  I slip, I slide, I gloom, I glance,
    Among my skimming swallows;
  I make the netted sunbeam dance
    Against my sandy shallows.

  I murmur under moon and stars
    In brambly wildernesses;
  I linger by my shingly bars;
    I loiter round my cresses.

  And out again I curve and flow
    To join the brimming river;
  For men may come and men may go,
    But I go on forever.



Among the most distinguished and interesting buildings in the town of Portland, Maine, is the rather severe-looking house built in the latter part of the eighteenth century by General Peleg Wadsworth. From the very date of its erection, this structure became the object of not a little pride among the citizens of Portland as the first in the town to be made of brick; but this local fame grew in the course of a century to world-wide celebrity when the dwelling came to be known as the childhood home of the most loved of American poets.

In 1808 the daughter of General Wadsworth, with her husband, Stephen Longfellow, and their two little children, removed from the house in the eastern part of Portland, where their second son, Henry, had been born a little over a year before, to live in the Wadsworth home. There the young mother, surrounded by the scenes endeared to her as those in which her own youth had been spent, devoted herself to the care and training of her children, while the father continued to pursue an honorable career as a lawyer and able representative, in public affairs, of the Federalist party. As the years passed, the little family grew considerably until it came to consist of four girls and five boys. Yet the mother found time for close companionship with all of her children and active interest in the affairs of each. And the father, though much occupied with duties outside of the home, watched carefully the progress made by his boys and girls and tried to put in their way the advantages that would help them to become rightminded and useful men and women.

[Illustration: HENRY WADSWORTH LONGFELLOW 1807-1882]

Indeed, so wholesome and well-ordered was the Longfellow home that it must have been a pleasant place to look in upon when all the family had assembled at evening in the living room. While the mother read perhaps from a book of verse, for she was especially fond of poetry, and the father gave himself up to some work on history, theology or law, the children would study quietly for probably an hour or more. Then, their lessons prepared, they would draw up in a little group to listen to a story, possibly from the Arabian Nights, or would gather about the piano in the parlor where Henry would sing to them the popular songs of that day. Sometimes the music would become so irresistibly gay that the children would begin to dance to its accompaniment and to awaken the echoes of the staid old dwelling-house with sounds of unrestrained delight that would have fallen with startling effect upon the ears of their Puritan ancestors.

Always a leader in these amusements was Henry Longfellow. His lively nature found especial delight in social pleasures. In fact, when he was but eight months old his mother discovered that he wished "for nothing so much as singing and dancing." Then, too, he was fond of playing ball, of swimming, coasting and skating and of all the other ordinary games and sports. However, he was an especially thoughtful boy, and even from his earliest years was a very conscientious student and took pride in making a good record at school. During the years passed at the Portland Academy, where he was placed when six years old, he worked so industriously and with such excellent results that although he found it very hard—too hard in fact—to be perfect in deportment, his earnest efforts were recognized by the master of the school who sent home from time to time a billet or short statement in which Henry's recitations and his general conduct were highly praised. The billet was a matter of no small consequence to the boy, at least in the earliest part of his school life, for in his first letter—a few lines written with much labor when he was seven years old, and sent to his father in Boston—one of the four sentences that make up the curt little note announces with due pride, "I shall have a billet on Monday."

While the boy was pursuing his regular studies at school, he found interest in reading other books than those required in his school course—various English classics contained in his father's library. Like the delight that he felt in such reading, was that which he found in rambling through the woods on the outskirts of the town and about the farms of his two grandfathers and of his uncle Stephenson. He liked the quiet of natural scenes, and was moved with deep wonder by the ever-changing beauty of the woods and fields, the ocean and the mountains. Because of this genuine love for nature and his tender regard for every living creature, he could not share his companions' pleasure in hunting expeditions. Indeed, it is said that on one occasion when he had shot a robin, he became so filled with pity and sorrow for the little dead bird that he could never again take part in such cruel sport.

It was not long before the effect of the combined influences of Henry Longfellow's reading of classic poets and of his rambles about the country surrounding his native town was made apparent in an event that doubtless seemed to him then to be the most important that had befallen in his career of thirteen years. He had been visiting his grandfather Wadsworth at Hiram, and while there had gone to a near-by town where is situated Lovell's Pond, memorable as the scene of a struggle with the Indians.

Henry had been so moved by the story that he could relieve his feelings only by telling it in verse. The four stanzas thus produced he so longed to see in print that he could not resist the desire to convey them secretly to the letter-box of the Portland Gazette, and deposit them there with mingled hope and mistrust. With what keen expectation he awaited the appearance of the newspaper perhaps only other youthful authors in like positions can fully feel. When at length the paper arrived, Henry must wait until his father had very deliberately opened it, read its columns and then without comment had laid it aside, before he could learn the fate of his verses.

But when, at length, he had the opportunity to scan the columns of the paper, he forgot all his anxiety and the hard period of waiting. There on the page before him he saw:

The Battle of Lovell's Pond

  Cold, cold is the north wind and rude is the blast
  That sweeps like a hurricane loudly and fast,
  As it moans through the tall waving pines lone and drear,
  Sings a requiem sad o'er the warrior's bier.

  The war-whoop is still, and the savage's yell
  Has sunk into silence along the wild dell;
  The din of the battle, the tumult, is o'er
  And the war-clarion's voice is now heard no more.

  The warriors that fought for their country—and bled,
  Have sunk to their rest; the damp earth is their bed;
  No stone tells the place where their ashes repose,
  Nor points out the spot from the graves of their foes.

  They died in their glory, surrounded by fame,
  And Victory's loud trump their death did proclaim;
  They are dead; but they live in each Patriot's breast,
  And their names are engraven on honor's bright crest.


It is little wonder that through the day he read the verses again and again and that his thoughts were filled with the excitement and joy of success. That evening while visiting at the home of Judge Mellen, the father of one of his closest friends, he was sitting interestedly listening to a conversation on the subject of poetry, when he was startled by seeing the judge take up the Gazette and hearing him say: "Did you see the piece in to-day's paper? Very stiff, remarkably stiff; moreover, it is all borrowed, every word of it." So unexpected and harsh was the censure that Henry felt almost crushed and could hardly conceal his feelings until he could reach home. Not until he had gone to bed and was shielded from all critical eyes did he give vent to his bitter disappointment.

In the following year (1821), his course at the Academy having come to an end, he took the entrance examinations for Bowdoin College. Though both he and his elder brother passed these successfully, they did not go to the College at Brunswick for another year. Henry then entered upon his course of study with such earnestness and enthusiasm that in a class, consisting of students several of whom later became notable, he ranked as one of the first. Like his classmate Hawthorne, he was especially devoted to the study of literature. So genial and courteous was his bearing toward all, and such a lively interest did he take in all the worthier activities of the life at the college, that though he chose as his intimate friends only those whose tastes agreed with his own, he was generally liked and admired.

Perhaps the success of his course at Bowdoin increased his confidence in his ability to write for publication, though indeed it had been proved that the outcome of his first venture along this line had not after all destroyed the budding hopes of the young writer. For previous to entering college he had continued to make contributions to the Gazette. Other compositions in both prose and verse were now sent at various times to the Portland periodical; and in October, 1824, appeared in a Boston magazine entitled The United States Literary Gazette the first of a series of seventeen poems composed by H. W. L.

A constant sympathizer and admirer during these early years of authorship was Henry's friend William Browne, a boy whose literary aspirations had led him to form with Henry, before the latter entered Bowdoin, a sort of association by which various literary enterprises were attempted. Indeed, it seems probable that at this time Henry looked rather to such companions than to his parents for appreciation of his developing ability. At all events, we find him writing to his father in March, 1824:

"I feel very glad that I am not to be a physician—that there are quite enough in the world without me. And now, as somehow or other this subject has been introduced, I am curious to know what you do intend to make of me—whether I am to study a profession or not; and if so, what profession. I hope your ideas upon this subject will agree with mine, for I have a particular and strong prejudice for one course of life, to which you, I fear, will not agree. It will not be worth while for me to mention what this is, until I become more acquainted with your own wishes."

Later, however, urged by the unpleasant prospect of being compelled to obey his father's desire that he become a lawyer, Henry decided that he must express his own hopes quite plainly. In a letter of December, 1824, appears the passage:

"The fact is—and I will not disguise it in the least, for I think I ought not—the fact is, I most eagerly aspire after future eminence in literature; my whole soul burns most ardently for it, and every earthly thought centers in it. There may be something visionary in this, but I flatter myself that I have prudence enough to keep my enthusiasm from defeating its own object by too great haste. Surely, there never was a better opportunity offered for the exertion of literary talent in our own country than is now offered. To be sure, most of our literacy men thus far have not been professedly so, until they have studied and entered the practice of theology, law, or medicine. But this is evidently lost time. I do believe that we ought to pay more attention to the opinion of philosophers, that 'nothing but Nature can qualify a man for knowledge.'

"Whether Nature has given me any capacity for knowledge or not, she has at any rate given me a very strong predilection for literary pursuits, and I am almost confident in believing that, if I can ever rise in the world, it must be by the exercise of my talent in the wide field of literature. With such a belief, I must say that I am unwilling to engage in the study of the law."

Nevertheless, Stephen Longfellow was not convinced by his son's words of the wisdom of the course proposed, and at length replied in no uncertain terms: "A literary life, to one who has the means of support, must be very pleasant. But there is not wealth enough in this country to afford encouragement and patronage to merely literary men. And as you have not had the fortune (I will not say whether good or ill) to be born rich, you must adopt a profession which will afford you subsistence as well as reputation." In the same letter, however, he granted willingly Henry's request to be allowed a year at Cambridge for the study of general literature. In response, the young student, after thanking his father for the privilege of the proposed attendance at Cambridge, writes: "Nothing delights me more than reading and writing. And nothing could induce me to relinquish the pleasures of literature, little as I have yet tasted them. Of the three professions I should prefer the law. I am far from being a fluent speaker, but practice must serve as a talisman where talent is wanting. I can be a lawyer. This will support my real existence, literature an ideal one."

Henry's career at Bowdoin was now drawing to a close, and it is likely that like most other students he regarded his graduation with some degree of regret. For in addition to the deeper pleasure that he had gained from his studies, he had found not a little enjoyment in the social life at the college. His handsome appearance made him an attractive figure at all gatherings; and his amiability and courtesy caused him to be as well liked by the young women whom he met on these occasions as by his classmates. In fact, the unusual refinement expressed by his clear, fair complexion, the sincerity reflected in his blue eyes, with their steadfast gaze, and the erect bearing of his slender figure, won confidence and admiration everywhere.

Whatever anxiety Henry Longfellow may have felt in looking forward to the period that lay beyond his graduation from Bowdoin College was wholly cleared away by a most surprising event that occurred at the time of the closing exercises. A gift of money had been made to the college for the purpose of founding a Professorship of the Modern Languages, and it was now decided to establish this position. It is said that one of the trustees of the college who had been very favorably impressed by Henry Longfellow's translation of an ode of Horace, proposed that he be appointed to the new office. As a result, it was made known to the young graduate that if he would prepare himself by a period of study in Europe, the professorship would be his to accept.

This unexpected good fortune was so gratifying to Henry's parents as well as to himself that they decided at once to send him abroad at their own expense. However, the plan could not be immediately carried out; it was necessary to wait several months for a favorable sailing season. The period of delay Henry spent partly in the composition of various articles and poems, and partly in studying law. At length, when spring was well advanced, he set sail from New York and a month later reached the French city of Havre. Then began the period of three years spent in travel through France, Spain, Italy and Germany, during which he gave himself diligently to the study of the languages and literatures of these countries and to extensive observation of manners and customs, works of art, points of historic interest and to all else that is of value to an eager, open-minded student. Thus he imbibed much of the national spirit of these lands and came into such vital appreciation of this spirit as it is expressed in literature that later he was able to become a most successful translator and to use foreign legends with excellent effect in his own compositions.

During his second year abroad, in the midst of most satisfactory progress, Henry received from his father the startling news that Bowdoin College had withdrawn the offer of the professorship. The mingled feelings thus awakened, and especially the reserve strength of the young man's character, are made plain in his reply:

"I assure you, my dear father, I am very indignant at this. They say I am too young! Were they not aware of this three years ago? If I am not capable of performing the duties of the office, they may be very sure of my not accepting it. I know not in what light they may look upon it, but for my own part, I do not in the least regard it as a favor conferred upon me. It is no sinecure; and if my services are an equivalent for my salary, there is no favor done me; if they be not, I do not desire the situation. . . . I feel no kind of anxiety for my future prospects. Thanks to your goodness, I have received a good education. I know you cannot be dissatisfied with the progress I have made in my studies. I speak honestly, not boastingly. With the French and Spanish languages I am familiarly conversant, so as to speak them correctly, and write them with as much ease and fluency as I do the English. The Portuguese I read without difficulty. And with regard to my proficiency in the Italian, I have only to say that all at the hotel where I lodge took me for an Italian until I told them I was an American."

Nevertheless, when Henry returned to Portland in the summer of 1829, he received the appointment to the desired professorship at Bowdoin College, and went to live at Brunswick. His success was assured from the start, for he had thoroughly prepared himself for his work, was enthusiastic in his desire to share with his classes the impressions received from the culture of the Old World, and was so young in years and at heart that he could readily awaken the interest and sympathy of youthful students. The earnestness and industry with which he devoted himself to his duties at this time may be judged from the following extract from a letter dated June 27, 1830:

"I rise at six in the morning, and hear a French recitation of Sophomores immediately. At seven I breakfast, and am then master of my time till eleven, when I hear a Spanish lesson of Juniors. After that I take a lunch; and at twelve I go into the library, where I remain till one. I am then at leisure for the afternoon till five, when I have a French recitation of Juniors. At six, I take coffee; then walk and visit friends till nine; study till twelve, and sleep till six, when I begin the same round again. Such is the daily routine of my life. The intervals of college duty I fill up with my own studies. Last term I was publishing text-books for the use of my pupils, in whom I take a deep interest. This term I am writing a course of lectures on French, Spanish and Italian literature. I shall commence lecturing to the two upper classes in a few days. You see, I lead a very sober, jog-trot kind of life. My circle of acquaintances is very limited. I am on very intimate terms with three families, and that is quite enough. I like intimate footings; I do not care for general society."

In the following year (1831) the routine of his life at Brunswick was interrupted by his marriage with Mary Storer Potter, one of the most beautiful and generally liked young women of Portland. Her education and tastes were such that they enabled her to share heartily her husband's interests, and this sympathetic association in the work to which he was devoted seemed to fill the measure of the young professor's happiness.

During the years spent in teaching at Bowdoin the career of Henry Longfellow as a professional writer had run parallel with that of teaching. In response to an invitation he had contributed various prose articles to the North American Review had written some poetry, and by 1835 had completed his Outre-Mer, a collection of prose sketches of his travels.

Not long before the publication of this work the author had received a most desirable offer of the Smith professorship of Modern Languages at Harvard University, with a salary of fifteen hundred dollars a year. In accepting the position the young man decided upon a trip abroad for the purpose of further study. Accordingly, with his wife he set sail for Hamburg in June, 1835. They stayed for a short time in London, where they met Carlyle, traveled then to Stockholm and Copenhagen, where the summer was passed in learning the Swedish and Danish languages, and in October reached Amsterdam. Here Mrs. Longfellow fell ill, and while she was recovering her husband undertook the study of Dutch. In Rotterdam Mrs. Longfellow again became ill, and died in that city on October 29. The loss fell so heavily upon Longfellow that he could not speak nor write of it. However, he disciplined himself to work and spent several months at Heidelberg, gaining a fuller knowledge of the German language and literature. In this city he met for the first time the poet Bryant. After traveling in Switzerland he returned to America late in 1836.

At the close of the same year he established himself at Cambridge, and there began a career of large usefulness and success at Harvard University. At the same time he wrote extensively both prose and verse, and by the time of his third visit to Europe, in 1842, had produced the prose romance Hyperion as well as the volumes of verse entitled Voices of the Night and Ballads and Other Poems and the drama The Spanish Student.

At this period of his life, Longfellow's journals and letters show much unrest and even at times a loss of interest in his work. His trip abroad for his health did not restore the satisfaction and contentment that he had once known. The needs of both heart and mind must be supplied in order that he might be at peace. Consequently we are not surprised by his marriage, in July, 1843, to Frances Appleton, the heroine of the romance Hyperion, and a most admirable and attractive young woman, fitted in every way to be the companion of the poet. The couple went to live in the Craigie House [Footnote: This house is celebrated not only as the poet's home but as having been at one time the headquarters of Washington.] at Cambridge, and entered upon a life of almost ideal domestic harmony.

Year after year passed, with little to mar the calm of the Longfellow home. The professor's days were filled with lectures to the college classes, with composition of original verse or translation from foreign literature and with letter writing, answers to unnumbered requests for autographs and calls from distinguished persons or from obscure but aspiring writers. Only a man of rare patience and kindness would have given such a great portion of his time as Longfellow gave during these and all the subsequent years of his life to answering the many inexcusable and often ridiculous requests for explanation of the motives and meaning of his writings, for help in obtaining public recognition, for criticism of poems that the writers submitted and for a variety of other favors.

Often there were visits to the opera or attendance at concerts, always in company with Mrs. Longfellow. Sometimes the day was darkened by the illness of one of the children. Then again, with the little ones of the household, the Harvard professor, casting aside his dignity, with all serious cares, would enter with all, his heart into some childish game. Such a good time did he have that he found it worth while to make in his journal such entries as: "Worked hard with the children, making snow-houses in the front yard, to their infinite delight;" "After dinner had all the children romping in the haymow;" "Coasted with my boys (Charles and Ernest) for two hours on the bright hill-side behind the Catholic Church;" "After tea, read to the boys the Indian story of The Red Swan." Frequently he accompanied on pleasure excursions his three daughters, the young girls described for us in the familiar lines:

   "Grave Alice and laughing Allegra
    And Edith with golden hair."

From time to time the journal records an idea for a poem or the beginning of the work of composition, sometimes expressing the doubts and fears that attend this beginning. Thus under date of November 16, 1845, is the statement:

"Before church, wrote 'The Arrow and the Song,' which came into my mind as I stood with my back to the fire, and glanced on to the paper with arrowy speed. Literally an improvisation."

Later, on November 28, is recorded: "Set about 'Gabrielle,'[Footnote: The poem Evangeline, to which the poet at first intended to give the title Gabrielle.] my idyl in hexameters, in earnest. I do not mean to let a day go by without adding something to it, if it be but a single line. F. and Sumner are both doubtful of the measure. To me it seems the only one for such a poem." And again, on December 7, "I know not what name to give to—not my new baby, but my new poem. Shall it be 'Gabrielle,' or 'Celestine,' or 'Evangeline'?" In the journal for 1854 is noted on June 22, "I have at length hit upon a plan for a poem on the American Indian, which seems to me the right one and the only. It is to weave together their beautiful traditions into a whole. I have hit upon a measure, too, which I think the right and only one for such a theme;" and on June 28, "Work at 'Manabozho'; or, as I think I shall call it, 'Hiawatha,'—that being another name for the same personage."

As these literary projects came to fill more and more the poet's thought, he began to feel increasingly hampered by the work of his college classes. So urgent did the desire become to rid himself of duties that grew constantly more irksome, that at length, in 1854, he resigned his professorship. The mingled relief and regret thus afforded are expressed in his journal under date of September 12: "Yesterday I got from President Walker a note, with copy of the vote of the Corporation, accepting my resignation, and expressing regrets at my retirement. I am now free! But there is a good deal of sadness in the feeling of separating one's self from one's former life."

For several years thereafter Longfellow's life flowed along peacefully. These were most profitable years, for he was always an industrious worker and would not allow moodiness or disinclination to work to deprive him of opportunities for worthy labor. His three greatest works, Evangeline, Hiawatha and The Courtship of Miles Standish, appeared at intervals of a few years. But this period of comparative ease and quiet was brought to an abrupt close by the tragic death of Mrs. Longfellow in 1861. Her dress had taken fire from a lighted match that had fallen to the floor, and as a result she died the next day.

The poet's grief and feeling of loss were inexpressible, yet he maintained an appearance of calm. After a long time he became able to resume his work, and in the years that remained to him, he produced, besides minor writings, the two series of The Tales of a Wayside Inn. But he never ceased to miss the close companionship of his wife. He found consolation in caring for his children, sharing alike their pleasures and their more serious interests. Then, too, he had several intimate friends whose affection was always a source of great joy to him. With the exception of a fourth trip to Europe, he passed the rest of his life quietly, giving to the world the fruits of his matured poetic powers, continually extending kindly encouragement to struggling writers, and dispensing charity without parade of his kindness. So fully were all the promises of his youth realized in his character and his intellectual life during this final period, that when death came in 1882, after a brief period of illness, the people of his own land and those of many other nations as well felt that a great and good man had passed from earth.

One who reads the journal and the letters in which the home life of Longfellow is plainly pictured is impressed perhaps even more than by his poems with the fitness of his title, The Children's Poet. One cannot fail to find, in such words as those in the following extract from a letter, the gentleness of his regard for children: "My little girls are flitting about my study, as blithe as two birds. They are preparing to celebrate the birthday of one of their dolls; and on the table I find this programme, in E.'s handwriting, which I purloin and send to you, thinking it may amuse you. What a beautiful world this child's world is! So instinct with life, so illuminated with imagination! I take infinite delight in seeing it go on around me, and feel all the tenderness of the words that fell from the blessed lips: 'Suffer the little children to come unto me.' After that benediction how can any one dare to deal harshly with a child!" To this loving interest children everywhere have responded. On the poet's seventy- second birthday, about seven hundred children of Cambridge gave him an armchair made of the chestnut-tree celebrated in The Village Blacksmith. A poem was written in answer to the gift, and a copy of this was given to every child who came to visit the poet and sit in his chair. And children did come to visit him in great numbers. On one occasion, in the summer of 1880, the journal records: "Yesterday I had a visit from two schools: some sixty girls and boys, in all. It seems to give them so much pleasure that it gives me pleasure." The last letter that the poet is known to have written was one addressed to a little girl who had sent him a poem on his seventy-fifth birthday; and only four days before his death he received a visit from four Boston boys in whose albums he placed his autograph.

The strongest claim to the high regard in which Longfellow's poems are held is based on the very qualities that endear him to his child- readers. All his life, even in the midst of affliction and sorrow, he was governed by true, deep kindness for all living things, and by a spirit of helpfulness that is the most beautiful thing expressed in his poetry. Then, too, he was willing always to write simply, that all might be benefited by his pure, high thinking. So consistently and with such power did he put into practice the religion of good will and service to others that his life seems to have been a realization of the desire expressed in Wordsworth's lines:

  "And I could wish my days to be
   Bound each to each by natural piety."

Some of Longfellow's poems that children like most are named in the following paragraphs:

Perhaps the most interesting for the youngest readers are Paul Revere's Ride and The Wreck of the Hesperus; The Children's Hour, in which the poet tells of the daily play-time with his little girls; and The Village Blacksmith, together with the verses From My Arm-Chair, written when the children gave the chair made from the chestnut tree that had once shaded the Village Blacksmith.

Story-telling poems that children of from ten to twelve years of age can enjoy are: The Happiest Land, The Luck of Edenhall, The Elected Knight, Excelsior, The Phantom Ship, The Discoverer of the North Cape, The Bell of Atri, The Three Kings, The Emperor's Bird's Nest and The Maiden and the Weathercock. The Windmill and the translation Beware are especially lively, little poems; and The Arrow and the Song and Children are quite as cheerful though quieter. More serious is The Day Is Done, well liked for the restful melody; The Old Clock on the Stairs, with its curious refrain; and the famous Psalm of Life, the lesson of which has helped many a young boy and girl.

Among the story-poems for children older than twelve years are Longfellow's greatest works, Evangeline, Hiawatha and The Courtship of Miles Standish; and the minor poems, Elizabeth, The Beleaguered City and The Building of the Ship. Nature poems that appeal to readers of this age are the Hymn to the Night, The Rainy Day, The Evening Star, A Day of Sunshine, The Brook and the Wave, Rain in Summer, and Wanderer's Night Songs.

Children who are fond of imagining will enjoy The Belfry of Bruges and Travels by the Fireside, and those who like song-poems may select The Bridge or Stay, Stay at Home, My Heart.

Nearly all of the poems that have been named are found in collections of Longfellow's works under the titles of the volumes in which they were originally published. A Psalm of Life, for example, is one of the group entitled Voices of the Night; and Paul Revere's Ride is one of the Tales of a Wayside Inn.




When the hours of Day are numbered,
  And the voices of the Night
Wake the better soul, that slumbered,
  To a holy, calm delight;

Ere the evening lamps are lighted,
  And, like phantoms grim and tall,
Shadows from the fitful firelight
  Dance upon the parlor wall;

Then the forms of the departed
  Enter at the open door;
The beloved, the true-hearted,
  Come to visit me once more;

  He, the young and strong, who cherished
    Noble longings for the strife,
  By the roadside fell and perished,
    Weary with the march of life!

  They, the holy ones and weakly,
    Who the cross of suffering bore,
  Folded their pale hands so meekly,
    Spake with us on earth no more!

  And with them the Being Beauteous,*
    Who unto my youth was given,
  More than all things else to love me,
    And is now a saint in heaven.

  With a slow and noiseless footstep
    Comes that messenger divine,
  Takes the vacant chair beside me,
    Lays her gentle hand in mine.

  And she sits and gazes at me
    With those deep and tender eyes,
  Like the stars, so still and saint-like,
    Looking downward from the skies.

  Uttered not, yet comprehended,
    Is the spirit's voiceless prayer,
  Soft rebukes, in blessings ended,
    Breathing from her lips of air.

  O, though oft depressed and lonely,
    All my fears are laid aside,
  If I but remember only
    Such as these have lived and died!

*[Footnote: This refers to Longfellow's first wife, Mary Storer Potter, whom he married in 1831. On his second visit to Europe, Mrs. Longfellow died at Rotterdam in 1835.]



  I need not praise the sweetness of his song,
    Where limpid verse to limpid verse succeeds
  Smooth as our Charles, when, fearing lest he wrong
  The new moon's mirrored skiff, he slides along,
    Full without noise, and whispers in his reeds.

  With loving breath of all the winds his name
    Is blown about the world, but to his friends
  A sweeter secret hides behind his fame,
  And Love steals shyly through the loud acclaim,
    To murmur a God bless you! and there ends.

* * * * *

  Surely if skill in song the shears may stay
    And of its purpose cheat the charmed abyss,
  If our poor life be lengthened by a lay,
  He shall not go, although his presence may,
    And the next age in praise shall double this.

  Long days be his, and each as lusty-sweet
    As gracious natures find his song to be;
  May Age steal on with softly-cadenced feet
  Falling in music, as for him were meet
    Whose choicest verse is harsher-toned than he!

While this little tribute may not be as simple to read as some of the things in this book, yet it is beautiful to those who can read it.


One of the fine things about good poetry is that it will not only bear study and examination, but will yield new beauty and new pleasure as it is better understood. For instance, take the first stanza above. Lowell says Longfellow's poetry is sweet and easily understood and that one line follows another smoothly. To make us see how smoothly, he makes a beautiful comparison, draws for us an exquisite picture. As smooth, he says, as is our own river Charles when at night, fearing to disturb by so much as a single ripple the reflection of the crescent moon, a mirrored skiff, it glides along noiselessly but whispering gently to the reeds that line its shores.

Again, Lowell says that the very winds love Longfellow, and waft his name about the world, giving him fame and honor; but his friends know him to be a man with a loving heart, and so they steal up to him and murmur through the noisy shoutings of the crowd a simple God bless you! which they know Longfellow will appreciate on his birthday more than all his fame.

To understand the first line in the third stanza, we must know of the three Fates who in the old Greek myth controlled the life of every man. One spun the thread of life, a second determined its course, and the third stood by with shears ready to cut the thread where death was due. Lowell says if being a skillful poet will make a man immortal, if our life can be lengthened by a song, then Longfellow shall not leave us even though his body goes, and in another generation his fame shall be doubly great.



  Under a spreading chestnut-tree
    The village smithy stands;
  The smith, a mighty man is he,
    With large and sinewy hands;
  And the muscles of his brawny arms
    Are strong as iron bands.

  His hair is crisp and black and long;
    His face is like the tan;
  His brow is wet with honest sweat,—
    He earns whate'er he can;
  And looks the whole world in the face,
    For he owes not any man.

  Week in, week out, from morn till night.
    You can hear his bellows blow;
  You can hear him swing his heavy sledge,
    With measured beat and slow,
  Like sexton ringing the village bell
    When the evening sun is low.

  And children, coming home from school,
    Look in at the open door;
  They love to see the naming forge,
    And hear the bellows roar,
  And catch the burning sparks that fly
    Like chaff from a threshing-floor.


  He goes on Sunday to the church,
    And sits among his boys;
  He hears the parson pray and preach,
    He hears his daughter's voice,
  Singing in the village choir,
    And it makes his heart rejoice.

  It sounds to him like her mother's voice,
    Singing in Paradise!
  He needs must think of her once more,
    How in the grave she lies;
  And with his hard, rough hand he wipes
    A tear out of his eyes.

    Onward through life he goes;
  Each morning sees some task begin,
    Each evening sees it close;
  Something attempted, something done,
    Has earned a night's repose.

  Thanks, thanks to thee, my worthy friend,
    For the lesson thou hast taught!
  Thus at the flaming forge of life
    Our fortunes must be wrought;
  Thus on its sounding anvil shaped
    Each burning deed and thought!

What a clear little poem this is! From beginning to end there is scarcely a thing that needs to be explained. We can see the two pictures almost as though they had been painted for us in colors. If anything is obscure, it is the comparison of the sparks to the chaff from a threshing-floor. And if that isn't clear to us it is because times have changed, and we no longer see grain threshed out on a floor. His "limpid verse to limpid verse succeeds, smooth as our Charles!"

Longfellow uses skill in the song. He shows us the old blacksmith at his forge and draws us with the other children to see his work. We learn to love the strong old man, independent, proud and happy. We sympathize with him as he weeps and admire him so much that we delight at the lesson Longfellow so skillfully places at the end.



It was the schooner Hesperus,
 That sailed the wintry sea;
And the skipper had taken his little daughter,
 To bear him company.

Blue were her eyes as the fairy-flax,
 Her cheeks like the dawn of day,
And her bosom white as the hawthorn buds
 That ope in the month of May.

The skipper he stood beside the helm
 His pipe was in his mouth,
And he watched how the veering flaw did blow
 The smoke now West, now South.

Then up and spake an old Sailor,
  Had sailed the Spanish Main,
"I pray thee, put into yonder port,
 For I fear a hurricane.

"Last night the moon had a golden ring,
 And to-night no moon we see!"
The skipper he blew a whiff from his pipe,
 And a scornful laugh laughed he.

Colder and colder blew the wind
 A gale from the Northeast;
The snow fell hissing in the brine,
 And the billows frothed like yeast.

[Illustration: He Bound Her To The Mast.]

  Down came the storm, and smote amain,
    The vessel in its strength;
  She shuddered and paused, like a frighted steed,
    Then leaped her cable's length.

  "Come hither! come hither! my little daughter,
    And do not tremble so;
  For I can weather the roughest gale,
    That ever wind did blow."

  He wrapped her warm in his seaman's coat
    Against the stinging blast;
  He cut a rope from a broken spar,
    And bound her to the mast.

  "O father! I hear the church-bells ring.
    O say, what may it be?"
  "'Tis a fog-bell on a rock-bound coast!"—
    And he steered for the open sea.

  "O father! I hear the sound of guns.
    O say, what may it be?"
  "Some ship in distress, that cannot live
    In such an angry sea!"

  "O father! I see a gleaming light.
    O say, what may it be?"
  But the father answered never a word,
    A frozen corpse was he.

  Lashed to the helm, all stiff and stark,
    With his face turned to the skies,
  The lantern gleamed through the gleaming snow
    On his fixed and glassy eyes.

  Then the maiden clasped her hands and prayed
    That saved she might be;
  And she thought of Christ, who stilled the wave,
    On the Lake of Galilee.

  And fast through the midnight dark and drear,
    Through the whistling sleet and snow,
  Like a sheeted ghost, the vessel swept
    Towards the reef of Norman's Woe.

  And ever the fitful gusts between
    A sound came from the land;
  It was the sound of the trampling surf,
    On the rocks and the hard sea-sand.

  The breakers were right beneath her bows,
    She drifted a dreary wreck,
  And a whooping billow swept the crew
    Like icicles from her deck.

  She struck where the white and fleecy waves
    Looked soft as carded wool,
  But the cruel rocks, they gored her side
    Like the horns of an angry bull.

Her rattling shrouds, all sheathed in ice,

    With the masts went by the board;
  Like a vessel of glass, she stove and sank,
    Ho! ho! the breakers roared!

  At daybreak, on the bleak sea-beach,
    A fisherman stood aghast,
  To see the form of a maiden fair,
    Lashed close to a drifting mast.

  The salt sea was frozen on her breast,
    The salt tears in her eyes;
  And he saw her hair, like the brown sea-weed,
    On the billows fall and rise.

  Such was the wreck of the Hesperus,
    In the midnight and the snow!
  Christ save us all from a death like this,
    On the reef of Norman's Woe!

[Footnote: This story has been abridged somewhat]


Nello and Patrasche were left all alone in the world. They were friends in a friendship closer than brotherhood.

Nello was a little Ardennois; Patrasche was a big Fleming. They were both of the same age by length of years, yet one was still young and the other already old. They had dwelt together almost all their days; both were orphaned and destitute and owed their lives to the same hand.

Their home was a little hut on the edge of a little Flemish village, a league from Antwerp.

It was the hut of an old man—a poor man—of old Jehan Daas, who in his time had been a soldier and who remembered the wars that had trampled the country as oxen tread down the furrows, and who had brought from his service nothing except a wound which had made him a cripple.

When Jehan Daas had reached his full eighty his daughter had died in the Ardennes, hard by Stavelot, and had left him in legacy her two- year-old son. The old man could ill contrive to support himself, but he took up the additional burden uncomplainingly, and it soon became welcome and precious to him. Little Nello—which was but a pet diminutive for Nicholas—throve with him, and the old man and the little child lived in the poor little hut contentedly.

They were terribly poor—many a day they had nothing at all to eat. They never by any chance had enough. To have had enough to eat would have been to have reached paradise at once. But the old man was gentle and good to the boy and the boy was a beautiful, innocent, truthful, tender-hearted creature; and they were happy on a crust and a few leaves of cabbage and asked no more of earth or heaven, save, indeed, that Patrasche should be always with them, since without Patrasche where would they have been?

Jehan Daas was old and crippled and Nello was but a child—and
Patrasche was their dog.

A dog of Flanders—yellow of hide, large of limb, with wolflike ears that stood erect, and legs bowed and feet widened in the muscular development wrought in his breed by the many generations of hard service. Patrasche came of a race which had toiled hard and cruelly from sire to son in Flanders many a century—slaves of slaves, dogs of the people, beasts of the shafts and harness, creatures that lived training their sinews in the gall of the cart, and died breaking their hearts on the flints of the street.

Before he was fully grown he had known the bitter gall of the cart and collar. Before he had entered his thirteenth month he had become the property of a hardware dealer, who was accustomed to wander over the land north and south, from the blue sea to the green mountains. They sold him for a small price because he was so young.

This man was a drunkard and a brute. The life of Patrasche was a life of abuse.

His purchaser was a sullen, ill-living, brutal Brabantois, who heaped his cart full with pots and pans, and flagons and buckets, and other wares of crockery and brass and tin, and left Patrasche to draw the load as best he might while he himself lounged idly by the side in fat and sluggish ease, smoking his black pipe and stopping at every wine shop or café on the road.

One day, after two years of this long and deadly agony, Patrasche was going on as usual along one of the straight, dusty, unlovely roads that lead to the city of Rubens.

It was full midsummer and exceedingly warm. His cart was heavy, piled high with goods in metal and earthenware. His owner sauntered on without noticing him otherwise than by the crack of the whip as it curled around his quivering loins.

The Brabantois had paused to drink beer himself at every wayside house, but he had forbidden Patrasche to stop for a moment for a draft from the canal. Going along thus, in the full sun, on a scorching highway, having eaten nothing for twenty-four hours, and, which was far worse for him, not having tasted water for nearly twelve; being blind with dust, sore with blows, and stupefied with the merciless weight which dragged upon his loins, Patrasche, for once, staggered and foamed a little at the mouth and fell.

He fell in the middle of the white, dusty road, in the full glare of the sun; he was sick unto death and motionless. His master gave him the only medicine in his pharmacy—kicks and oaths and blows with the oak cudgel—which had been often the only food and drink, the only wage and reward, ever offered to him.

But Patrasche was beyond the reach of any torture or of any curses. Patrasche lay, dead to all appearances, down in the white powder of the summer dust. His master, with a parting kick, passed on and left him.

After a time, among the holiday makers, there came a little old man who was bent, and lame, and feeble. He was in no guise for feasting. He was poor and miserably clad, and he dragged his silent way slowly through the dust among the pleasure seekers.

He looked at Patrasche, paused, wondered, turned aside, then kneeled down in the rank grass and weeds of the ditch and surveyed the dog with kindly eyes of pity.

There was with him a little, rosy, fair-haired, dark-eyed child of a few years old, who pattered in amid the bushes, that were for him breast high, and stood gazing with a pretty seriousness upon the poor, great, quiet beast.

Thus it was that these two first met—the little Nello and the big Patrasche. They carried Patrasche home; and when he recovered he was harnessed to the cart that carried the milk cans of the neighbors to Antwerp. Thus the dog earned the living of the old man and the boy who saved him.

There was only one thing which caused Patrasche any uneasiness in his life, and it was this: Antwerp, as all the world knows, is full at every turn of old piles of stones, dark, and ancient, and majestic, standing in crooked courts, jammed against gateways and taverns, rising by the water's edge, with bells ringing above them in the air, and ever and again out of their arched doors a swell of music pealing.

There they remain, the grand old sanctuaries of the past, shut in amid the squalor, the hurry, the crowds, the unloveliness, and the commerce of the modern world, and all day long the clouds drift, and the birds circle, and the winds sigh around them, and beneath the earth at their feet there sleeps—Rubens.

And the greatness of the mighty master still rests upon Antwerp. Wherever we turn in its narrow streets his glory lies therein, so that all mean things are thereby transfigured; and as we pace slowly through the winding ways, and by the edge of the stagnant waters, and through the noisome courts, his spirit abides with us, and the heroic beauty of his visions is about us, and the stones that once felt his footsteps, and bore his shadow, seem to rise and speak of him with living voices. For the city which is the tomb of Rubens still lives to us through him, and him alone.

Now, the trouble of Patrasche was this:

Into these great, sad piles of stones, that reared their melancholy majesty above the crowded roofs, the child Nello would many and many a time enter and disappear through their dark, arched portals, while Patrasche, left upon the pavement, would wearily and vainly ponder on what could be the charm which allured from him his inseparable and beloved companion.


Once or twice he did essay to see for himself, clattering up the steps with his milk cart behind him, but thereon he had been always sent back again summarily by a tall custodian in black clothes and silver chains of office, and, fearful of bringing his little master into trouble, he desisted and crouched patiently before the church until such time as the boy reappeared.

What was it? wondered Patrasche.

He thought it could not be good or natural for the lad to be so grave, and in his dumb fashion he tried all he could to keep Nello by him in the sunny fields or in the busy market places.

But to the church Nello would go. Most often of all he would go to the great cathedral; and Patrasche, left without on the stones by the iron fragments of the Quentin Matsys's gate, would stretch himself and yawn and sigh, and even howl now and then, all in vain, until the doors closed and the child perforce came forth again, and, winding his arms about the dog's neck, would kiss him on his broad, tawny-colored forehead and murmur always the same words:

"If I could only see them, Patrasche! If I could only see them!"

What were they? pondered Patrasche, looking up with large, wistful, sympathetic eyes.

One day, when the custodian was out of the way and the doors left ajar, he got in for a moment after his friend, and saw. "They" were two great covered pictures on either side of the choir.

Nello was kneeling, wrapt as in an ecstasy, before the altar picture of the "Assumption," and when he noticed Patrasche and rose and drew the dog gently out into the air, his face was wet with tears, and he looked up at the veiled places as he passed them and murmured to his companion:

"It is so terrible not to see them, Patrasche, just because one is poor and cannot pay! He never meant that the poor should not see them when he painted them, I am sure. And they keep them shrouded there—- shrouded in the dark—-the beautiful things! And they never feel the light, and no eyes look upon them unless rich people come and pay. If I could only see them I would be content to die."

But he could not see them, and Patrasche could not help him, for to gain the silver piece that the church exacts for looking on the glories of the "Elevation of the Cross" and the "Descent from the Cross" was a thing as utterly beyond the powers of either of them as it would have been to scale the heights of the cathedral spire.

The whole soul of the little Ardennois thrilled and stirred with an absorbing passion for art.

Going on his way through the old city in the early daybreak before the sun or the people had seen them, Nello, who looked only a little peasant boy, with a great dog drawing milk to sell from door to door, was in a heaven of dreams whereof Rubens was the god. Nello, cold and hungry, with stockingless feet in wooden shoes, and the winter winds blowing among his curls and lifting his poor, thin garments, was in rapture of meditation wherein all that he saw was the beautiful face of the Mary of "Assumption," with the waves of her golden hair lying upon her shoulders and the light of an eternal sun shining down upon her brow. Nello, reared in poverty, and buffeted by fortune, and untaught in letters, and unheeded by men, had the compensation or the curse which is called genius.

No one knew it—he as little as any. No one knew it.

"I should go to my grave quite content if I thought, Nello, that when thou growest a man thou couldst own this hut and the little plat of ground and labor for thyself and be called Baas by thy neighbors," said the old man Jehan many an hour from his bed.

Nello dreamed of other things in the future than of tilling the little rood of earth, and living under the wattle roof, and being called Baas by neighbors, a little poorer or a little less poor than himself. The cathedral spire, where it rose beyond the fields in the ruddy evening skies or in the dim, gray, misty morning, said other things to him than this. But these he told only to Patrasche, whispering, childlike, his fancies in the dog's ear when they went together at their work through the fogs of the daybreak or lay together at their rest amongst the rustling rushes by the water's side.

There was only one other besides Patrasche to whom Nello could talk at all of his daring fancies. This other was little Alois, who lived at the old red mill on the grassy mound, and whose father, the miller, was the best-to-do husbandman in all the village.

Little Alois was a pretty baby, with soft, round, rosy features, made lovely by those sweet, dark eyes that the Spanish rule has left in so many a Flemish face.

Little Alois often was with Nello and Patrasche. They played in the fields, they ran in the snow, they gathered the daisies and bilberries, they went up to the old gray church together, and they often sat together by the broad wood fire in the millhouse.

One day her father, Baas Cogez, a good man, but stern, came on a pretty group in the long meadow behind the mill.

It was his little daughter sitting amidst the hay, with the great, tawny head of Patrasche on her lap, and many wreaths of poppies and blue cornflowers round them both. On a clean, smooth slab of pine wood the boy Nello drew their likeness with a stick of charcoal.

The miller stood and looked at the portrait with tears in his eyes, it was so strangely like, and he loved his own child closely and well. Then he roughly chid the little girl for idling there whilst her mother needed her within, and sent her indoors crying and afraid. Then, turning, he snatched the wood from Nello's hands.


"Dost much of such folly?" he asked. But there a tremble in his voice.

Nello colored and hung his head. "I draw everything I see," he murmured.

Baas Cogez went into his millhouse sore troubled in his mind. "This lad must not be so much with Alois," he said to his wife that night. "Trouble may come of it hereafter. He is fifteen now and she is twelve, and the lad is comely." And from that day poor Nello was allowed in the millhouse no more.

Nello had a secret which only Patrasche knew. There was a little outhouse to the hut, which no one entered but himself—a dreary place but with an abundant clear light from the north. Here he had fashioned himself rudely an easel in rough lumber, and here, on the great sea of stretched paper, he had given shape to one of the innumerable fancies which possessed his brain.

No one ever had taught him anything; colors he had no means to buy; he had gone without bread many a time to procure even the poor vehicles that he had there; and it was only in black and white that he could fashion the things he saw. This great figure which he had drawn here in chalk was only an old man sitting on a fallen tree—only that. He had seen old Michel, the woodman, sitting so at evening many a time.

He never had had a soul to tell him of outline or perspective, of anatomy or of shadow, and yet he had given all the weary, worn-out age, all the sad, quiet patience, all the rugged, careworn pathos of his original, and given them so that the old, lonely figure was a poem, sitting there, meditative and alone, on the dead tree, with the darkness of descending night behind him.

It was rude, of course, in a way, and had many faults no doubt; and yet it was real, true to nature, true to art, mournful, and, in a manner, beautiful.

Patrasche had lain quiet countless hours watching its gradual creation after the labor of each day was done, and he knew that Nello had a hope—vain and wild perhaps, but strongly cherished—of sending this great drawing to compete for a prize of 200 francs a year, which it was announced in Antwerp would be open to every lad of talent, scholar or peasant, under eighteen, who attempted to win it with unaided work of chalk or pencil. Three of the foremost artists in the town of Rubens were to be the judges and elect the victor according to his merits.

All the spring and summer and autumn Nello had been at work upon this treasure, which, if triumphant, would build him his first steps toward independence and the mysteries of the arts, which he blindly, ignorantly and yet passionately adored.

The drawings were to go in on the 1st of December and the decision to be given on the 24th, so that he who should win might rejoice with all his people at the Christmas season.

In the twilight of a bitter winter day, and with a beating heart, now quick with hope, now faint with fear, Nello placed the great picture on his little green milk cart and left it, as enjoined, at the doors of a public building.

He took heart as he went by the cathedral. The lordly form of Rubens seemed to rise from the fog and darkness and to loom in its magnificence before him, whilst the lips, with their kindly smile, seemed to him to murmur, "Nay, have courage! It was not by a weak heart and by faint fears that I wrote my name for all time upon Antwerp."

The winter was sharp already. That night, after they reached the hut, snow fell, and it fell for many days after that, so that the paths and the divisions of the fields were all obliterated, and all the smaller streams were frozen over and the cold was intense upon the plains. Then, indeed, it became hard work to go round for milk, while the world was all dark, and carry it through the darkness to the silent town.

In the winter time all drew nearer to each other, all to all except to Nello and Patrasche, with whom none now would have anything to do, because the miller had frowned upon the child. Nello and Patrasche were left to fare as they might with the old, paralyzed, bedridden man in the little cabin, whose fire often was cold, and whose board often was without bread, for there was a buyer from Antwerp who had taken to drive his mule in of a day for the milk of the various dairies, and there were only three or four of the people who had refused the terms of purchase and remained faithful to the little green cart. So that the burden which Patrasche drew had become light, and the centime pieces in Nello's pouch had become, alas! light likewise.

The weather was wild and cold. The snow was six feet deep; the ice was firm enough to bear oxen and men upon it everywhere. At this season the little village always was gay and cheerful. At the poorest dwelling there were possets and cakes, sugared saints and gilded Jesus. The merry Flemish bells jingled everywhere on the horses, everywhere within doors some well-filled soup pot sang and smoked over the stove, and everywhere over the snow without laughing maidens pattered in bright kerchiefs and stout skirts going to and from mass. Only in the little hut it was dark and cold.


Nello and Patrasche were left utterly alone; for one night in the week before the Christmas day death entered there and took away from life forever old Jehan Daas. who had never known of life aught save poverty and pain. He had long been half dead, incapable of any movement except a feeble gesture, and powerless for anything beyond a gentle word. And yet his loss fell on them both with a great horror in it; they mourned him passionately. He had passed away from them in his sleep, and when in the gray dawn they learned their bereavement, unbearable solitude and desolation seemed to close around them. He had long been only a poor, feeble, paralyzed old man who could not raise a hand in their defense, but he had loved them well; his smile always had welcomed their return. They mourned for him unceasingly, refusing to be comforted, as in the white winter day they followed the deal shell that held his body to the nameless grave by the little church. They were his only mourners, these two whom he had left friendless upon the earth— the young boy and the old dog.

Nello and Patrasche went home with broken hearts. But even of that poor, melancholy, cheerless home they were denied the consolation. There was a month's rental overdue for the little place, and when Nello had paid the last sad service to the dead he had not a coin left. He went and begged grace of the owner of the hut, a cobbler who went every Sunday night to drink his pint of wine and smoke with Baas Cogez. The cobbler would grant no mercy. He claimed in default of his rent every stick and stone, every pot and pan in the hut, and bade Nello and Patrasche to be out of it by to-morrow.

All night long the boy and the dog sat by the fireless hearth in the darkness, drawn close together for warmth and sorrow. Their bodies were insensible to the cold, but their hearts seemed frozen in them.

When the morning broke over the white, chill earth it was the morning of Christmas eve. With a shudder Nello clasped close to him his only friend, while his tears fell hot and fast on the dog's forehead.

"Let us go, Patrasche; dear, dear Patrasche!" he murmured. "We will not wait to be kicked out. Let us go."

They took the old accustomed road into Antwerp. The winner of the drawing prize was to be proclaimed at noon, and to the public building where he had left his treasure Nello made his way. On the step and in the entrance hall there was a crowd of youths—some of his age, some older, all with parents or relatives or friends. His heart was sick with fear as he went amongst them, holding Patrasche close to him.

The great bells of the city clashed out the hour of noon with brazen clamor. The doors of the inner hall were opened; the eager, panting throng rushed in. It was known that the selected picture would be raised above the rest upon a wooden dais.

A mist obscured Nello's sight, his head swam, his limbs almost failed him. When his vision cleared he saw the drawing raised on high; it was not his own. A slow, sonorous voice was proclaiming aloud that victory had been adjudged to Stephan Kiesslinger, born in the burg of Antwerp, son of a wharfinger in that town.

When Nello recovered consciousness he was lying on the stones without, and Patrasche was trying with every art he knew to call him back to life. In the distance a throng of youths of Antwerp were shouting around their successful comrade and escorting him with acclamation to his home upon the quay.

He rallied himself as best he could, for he was weak from fasting, and retraced his steps to the village. Patrasche paced by his side with his head drooping and his strong limbs feeble under him from hunger and sorrow.

The snow was falling fast; a keen hurricane blew from the north; it was bitter as death on the plains. It took them long to traverse the familiar paths, and the bells were sounding four of the clock as they approached the hamlet. Suddenly Patrasche paused, arrested by a scent in the snow, scratched, whined, and drew out with his teeth a small case of brown leather. He held it up to Nello in the darkness. Where they were there stood a little Calvary, and a lamp burned dully under the cross. The boy mechanically turned the bag to the light. On it was the name of Baas Cogez and within it were notes for 6,000 francs.

The sight aroused the lad a little from his stupor. He thrust it in his shirt and stroked Patrasche and drew him onward.

Nello made straight for the millhouse and went to the house-door and struck on the panels. The miller's wife opened it, weeping, with little Alois clinging close to her skirts.

"Is it thee, thou poor lad?" she asked kindly through her tears. "Get thee gone ere the Baas sees thee. We are in sore trouble to-night. He is out seeking for a power of money that he has let fall riding homeward, and in this snow he never will find it. And God knows it will go nigh to ruin us. It is heaven's own judgment for the things we have done to thee."

Nello put the note case within her hand and signed to Patrasche within the house.

"Patrasche found the money to-night," he said quickly. "Tell Baas Cogez so. I think he will not deny the dog shelter and food in his old age. Keep him from pursuing me, and I pray of you to be good to him."

Ere woman or dog knew what he did he had stooped and kissed Patrasche, then had closed the door hurriedly on him and had disappeared in the gloom of the fast falling night.

It was six o'clock at night when, from an opposite entrance, the miller at last came, jaded and broken, into his wife's presence. "It is lost forever," he said, with an ashen cheek and a quiver in his voice. "We have looked with lanterns everywhere. It is gone—the little maiden's portion and all."

His wife put the money into his hand and told him how it had come back to her. The strong man sank, trembling, into a seat and covered his face with his hands, ashamed, almost afraid.

"I have been cruel to the lad," he murmured at length. "I deserve not to have good at his hands."

Little Alois, taking courage, crept close to her father, and nestled against him her curly, fair head.

"Nello may come here again, father?" she whispered. "He may come to- morrow, as he used to do?"

The miller pressed her in his arms. His hard, sunburned face was pale and his mouth trembled. "Surely, surely," he answered his child. "He shall bide here on Christmas day and any other day he will. In my greed I sinned, and the Lord chastened me. God helping me, I will make amends to the boy—I will make amends."

When the supper smoked on the board and the voices were loudest and gladdest, and the Christ child brought choicest gifts to Alois, Patrasche, watching always an occasion, glided out when the door was unlatched by a careless newcomer, and as swiftly as his weak and tired limbs would bear him, sped over the snow in the bitter, black night. He had only one thought—to follow Nello.

Snow had fallen freshly all evening long. It was now nearly ten o'clock. The trail of the boy's footsteps was almost obliterated. It took Patrasche long and arduous labor to discover any scent which could guide him in pursuit. When at last he found it, it was lost again quickly, and lost and recovered, and again lost, and again recovered a hundred times and more. It was all quite dark in the town. Now and then some light gleamed ruddily through the crevices and house shutters, or some group went homeward with lanterns, chanting drinking songs. The streets were all white with ice, and high walls and roofs loomed black against them. There was scarce a sound save the riot of the wind down the passages as it tossed the creaking signs.

So many passers-by had trodden through and through the snow, so many diverse paths had crossed and recrossed each other that the dog had a hard task to retain any hold of the track he followed. But he kept on his way though the cold pierced him to the bone and the jagged ice cut his feet, and the hunger in his body gnawed like a rat's tooth. But he kept on his way—a poor, gaunt, shivering, drooping thing—in the frozen darkness, that no one pitied as he went—and by long patience traced the steps he loved into the heart of the burg and up to the steps of the great cathedral.

"He is gone to the things that he loved," thought Patrasche. He could not understand, but he was full of sorrow and of pity for the art passion that to him was so incomprehensible and yet so sacred.

The portals of the cathedral were unclosed after the midnight mass. Some heedlessness in the custodians, too eager to go home and feast or sleep, or too drowsy to know whether they turned the keys aright, had left one of the doors unlocked. By that accident the footfalls Patrasche sought had passed through into the building, leaving the white marks of the snow upon the dark stone floor.

By that slender white thread, frozen as it fell, he was guided through the intense silence, through the immensity of the vaulted space—guided straight to the gates of the chancel—and stretched there upon the stones, he found Nello. He crept up noiselessly and touched the face of the boy.

"Didst thou dream that I should be faithless and forsake thee? I—a dog?" said that mute caress.

The lad raised himself with a low cry and clasped him close.

"Let us lie down and die together," he murmured. "Men have no need of us, and we are all alone."

In answer Patrasche crept closer yet and laid his head upon the young man's breast. The tears stood in his great, brown, sad eyes. Not for himself; for himself he was happy.

Suddenly through the darkness a great white radiance streamed through the vastness of the aisles. The moon, that was at her height, had broken through the clouds. The snow had ceased to fall. The light reflected from the snow without was clear as the light of dawn. It fell through the arches full upon the two pictures above, from which the boy, on his entrance, had flung back the veil. "The Elevation" and "The Descent from the Cross" for one instant were visible as by day.

Nello rose to his feet and stretched his arms to them. The tears of a passionate ecstasy glistened on the paleness of his face.

"I have seen them at last!" he cried aloud. "Oh God, it is enough!"

When the Christmas morning broke and the priests came to the temple they saw them lying on the stones together. Above, the veils were drawn back from the great visions of Rubens, and the fresh rays of the sunrise touched the thorn-crowned head of God.

As the day grew on there came an old, hard-featured man who wept as women weep.

"I was cruel to the lad," he murmured, "and now I would have made amends—yea, to the half of my substance—and he should have been to me as a son."

There came also as the day grew apace a painter who had fame in the world and who was liberal of hand and of spirit.

"I seek one who should have had the prize yesterday had worth won," he said to the people, "a boy of rare promise and genius. An old woodcutter on a fallen tree at eventide, that was all his theme. I would find him and take him with me and teach him art."

And a little child with curling fair hair, sobbing bitterly as she clung to her father's arm, cried aloud: "O Nello, come! We have all ready for thee. The Christ child's hands are full of gifts, and the old piper will play for us; and the mother says thou shalt stay by the hearth and burn nuts with us all the Noel week long—yes even to the feast of the kings! And Patrasche will be happy! O Nello, wake and come!"

But the young, pale face, turned upward to the great Rubens with a smile upon its mouth, answered them all, "It is too late."

For the sweet sonorous hells went ringing through the frost, and the sunlight shone upon the plains of snow, and the populace trooped gay and glad through the streets, but Nello and Patrasche no more asked charity at their hands. All they needed now Antwerp gave unbidden.

When they were found the arms of the boy were folded so closely around the dog that it was difficult to draw them away. The people of the little village, contrite and ashamed, took the little boy tenderly in their arms and bore him away to his last resting place. Patrasche was not forgotten, for all the villagers felt the strength of his devotion.

* * * * *

Of all the characters in this story, which is the most important and the most interesting? The author has showed us which she considers the most important by the title she has given to the tale—A Dog of Flanders. Let us see just what she has told us about Patrasche, that we may know whether he is worthy of being the hero of a story.

First, as to his appearance, we are given the following facts:

1. Yellow of hide.

2. Large of limb.

3. Wolflike ears.

4. Legs bowed and feet widened.

5. Large, wistful, sympathetic eyes.

6. Great, tawny head.

7. (Later) Drooping and feeble; gaunt.

The picture which the author paints for us of Patrasche's appearance is not beautiful; we do not love him just for his looks. As to his character and abilities, we are told, or are enabled to find out from his actions, the following things:

1. Strong and industrious. He used to draw the heavy cart of the hardware dealer.

2. Grateful. He loved those who had saved his life, and worked for them willingly.

3. Careful of his young master. He was troubled when Nello went into the dim churches.

4. Wise. He felt that it was good for Nello to be as much as possible in the sunny fields or among happy people.

5. Sympathetic. He looked at Nello with wistful, sympathetic eyes.

6. Understanding. He realized that the picture that Nello was drawing was something which meant much to him.

7. Loving. He grieved passionately with Nello at the old man's death.

8. Acute of sense. He discovered the pocket book in the snow.

9. Faithful. He refused to stay in the miller's warm kitchen while Nello was out in the cold.

10. Persistent and patient. He never gave up the search, difficult though it was, until he had found his master.

11. Unselfish. He was happy for himself, but he wept because his master was unhappy.

Do you think a dog could have all these qualities, or do you think the author, in her anxiety to have us like the dog, has given him characteristics which he could not really possess? Have you not, yourself, known dogs that were as intelligent, as affectionate and as faithful as Patrasche?



In the writings of Alice and Phoebe Cary are to be found many references which show how fondly they remembered the little brown house in which they were born. This house was on a farm in the Miami Valley in Ohio, eight miles north of Cincinnati. Alice was born April 26th, 1820, and Phoebe, September 24th, 1824, and there was one brother between them. Robert Gary, the father, was a kindly, gentle man, fond of reading, especially romances and poetry. The education for which he had so much longed he had been unable to obtain, and this made him quiet and diffident with strangers, although in his own family he was most loving and most companionable. Even the animals on the farm loved him, and the horses and cattle would follow him about watching for the kindly word and pat, or for the lump of salt or sugar which he was so certain to have for them. This Robert Cary was a descendant of Sir Robert Cary, a famous English knight of the time of Henry V, and Phoebe was always very proud of this ancestry of hers—so proud, in fact, that she had the Gary arms engraved on a seal ring.

It would seem that the enthusiastic admiration which the daughters all their life had for their mother was nothing beyond her deserts, for she seems to have been far from an ordinary woman. Despite the fact that she had nine children, and that she did the work for the entire family, she managed to keep up her interest in public affairs, and to read history, essays, biography and politics, as often as books on such subjects came to her hand.

In the little brown house with its overhanging cherry tree, which tapped the roof and scratched the attic window-panes, and with its sweetbrier under the window, the children lived a simple and happy life. Naturally in a family of this size they divided themselves into groups, and Alice and Phoebe, who in their later life were so inseparable, do not seem to have singled each other out as companions in their childhood. Alice's special comrade was her next older sister, Rhoda, Thom she persisted to her dying day in thinking of as the real genius of the family, while the constant playmate of the active Phoebe was her next younger brother. The children spent much time out-of- doors, gathering nuts and flowers in their season, and gaining that love of nature which stayed with them all their lives. As they grew older, they were sent to the district school, and were taught household tasks, Alice taking readily enough to housekeeping, while Phoebe became, even as a child, remarkably proficient with the needle.

The struggle to keep out of debt was a constant one with the Cary family, and Alice said long years afterward, "For the first fourteen years of my life it seemed as if there was actually nothing in existence but work." However, By 1832 family affairs had improved somewhat, and a new and larger house was built upon the farm. It seemed as if all the ill luck of the family dated from the building of the new house, in which they were never as happy as they had been in the little brown house.

When she was a woman, Alice told with perfect faith the "family ghost story," which concerned this new house. She said that just before the removal of the family to the new house, they were all driven to the shelter of the old house by a sudden and violent summer storm. As Alice herself stood at the window looking out, she exclaimed to her mother, "Why is Rhoda at the new house with baby Lucy, and why does she have the door open?"

They all looked, and all saw Rhoda standing in the doorway of the new house, with the baby in her arms.

"She was probably out with the child and took shelter in the nearest place when the storm came up," said the mother, and then she called loudly, "Rhoda!"

The figure in the doorway did not move, and in a few moments Rhoda came down from upstairs, where she had left little Lucy asleep, declaring that she had not been near the new house.

The family believed most sincerely that this was a warning of trouble to come, and certain it is that in 1833, within one month of each other, Rhoda and little Lucy died. Lucy had been Alice's special charge, as Rhoda had been her special companion, and the girl's heart was almost broken by this double loss. How deep and lasting her grief was may be seen from a remark that she made to one of her friends, speaking of Lucy's death.

"I was not fourteen when she died—I am almost fifty now. It may seem strange when I tell you that I do not believe that there has been an hour of any day since her death in which I have not thought of her and mourned for her."

In 1835 Mrs. Cary died, and two years later the father married again. The stepmother, a hard-headed, practical woman, could see nothing but laziness in the desire of Alice and Phoebe to read and write. During the day she insisted that they must keep busy about the house; in the evening she refused to allow them to burn candles, and thus the girls often worked with no light except what was afforded by a saucer of lard with a twist of rag stuck into it for a wick. For books they had but the Bible, a Hymn Book, a History of the Jews, Lewis and Clark's Travels, Pope's Essays, Charlotte Temple, a romance, and a mutilated novel, The Black Penitents. The last pages of this novel were missing, and Alice often declared that it was a lifelong regret to her that she never learned how the story "turned out."

With these meager helps and with no incentives to work except their own desires, Alice and Phoebe constantly wrote poems and stories. At the age of fourteen, Phoebe, without telling her father or even her sister, sent a poem to a Boston publisher. She heard nothing from it, but some time later came upon it, copied in a Cincinnati paper from the Boston journal. She laughed and cried in her excitement, but still she told no one.

About this time the father and stepmother removed to another house which had been built on the farm, and left the children in possession of the old one, so that their life was decidedly happier and their chances for work were multiplied.

Alice from this time on published numerous poems, chiefly in church papers, and her writings began to attract attention throughout the country. There was a freshness and charm about her little poems which won for them the favorable opinion of some of the best judges of poetry in the country. Of her "Pictures of Memory," Poe said that it was one of the most rhythmically perfect lyrics in the English language. Whittier wrote to the sisters, and Horace Greeley visited them in 1849, and thus slowly they gained the recognition and the encouragement which led them in 1850 to a rather daring step.

This was no less than a removal to New York. Alice went first, but she soon sent for Phoebe and their younger sister Elmina. In thus setting out for the great city and settling down to earn her living, Alice Cary was no doubt influenced by a rather painful circumstance which had taken place in her life. There had come to their neighborhood, some little time before, a man, her superior in age and education, who had recognized her unusual gifts and attractiveness, and had spent much time with her. She came to love him deeply and sincerely, and it would seem that he was but little less attracted by her. However, his family managed to persuade him that his best interests demanded that he should not marry this country-bred girl, and he returned to his home, leaving Alice to watch and hope for his coming. The gradual relinquishment of her dream and the final conviction that the sort of home life for which she felt herself most fitted was not after all to be hers, led Alice Cary to feel that she must take up some definite work to support herself and to help her sisters. She herself said later, in speaking about the removal to New York, "Ignorance stood me in the stead of courage and of books"—she knew so little about the great city to which she was going that she feared it little.

The sisters made up their minds from the first that they would have a home; they had a horror of the boarding-house atmosphere. Their first home was but two, or three rooms, high up in a big building in an unfashionable part of the town. Alice papered rooms, Phoebe painted doors and framed pictures; but the impress of their individuality was on the rooms, and every one who entered them felt their coziness and "hominess." Papers and magazines paid but little for contributions in those days, and it was only by living in the most economical and humble way that they managed to avoid their great horror—debt. But their life was by no means barren, for they became acquainted with many pleasant people, who were always glad and proud to be invited to the little tea parties in the three rooms under the roof.

The publication in 1852 of Alice's Clovernook Papers brought to her increasing recognition and new friends. These simple, original little sketches of rural scenery and rural life were just the things which Alice Cary knew best how to write, and they became very popular all over the country. Before 1856 the sisters had removed to the pretty house in Twentieth Street which was their home for the rest of their lives. Alice bought the house and the furnishings; indeed it was she who did most of the planning for the household, and who paid most of the bills. She worked early and late, driven always by the obligations to be met. A biographer says of her: "I have never known any other woman so systematically and persistently industrious as Alice Cary." Phoebe worked indeed, but spasmodically—she waited on her moods.

The home life of the sisters was most pleasant and simple. They had no "society manners;" the witty Phoebe was as willing to flash out her brightest puns for Alice's enjoyment as she was for a drawing-room full of appreciative listeners; while Alice's gentleness and sweetness were shown constantly to her sister and were not reserved for company only. Their great occasions were their Sunday evening receptions, and the people who gathered then under their roof were far from an ordinary company. Horace Greeley, Bayard Taylor, Richard and Elizabeth Stoddard, Justin McCarthy, Thomas Bailey Aldrich, Ole Bull, P. T. Barnum, Elizabeth Cady Stanton—these were but a part of the brilliant company which delighted to gather on Sunday evening and enjoy the sweetness and womanliness of Alice, and the wit of Phoebe.

Interrupted by the death of the beloved younger sister Elmina, this life in the Twentieth Street house went on for over twelve years, until in 1868 Alice Cary became a confirmed invalid. After she was confined to her room, however, she wanted life and brightness about her, and had the door of her room always left open, that she might hear the cheerful sounds of the household.

[Illustration: ALICE CARY 1820-1871]

During their life in New York, Phoebe had had numerous offers of marriage, but it had never cost her anything to say, "I don't want to marry anybody." Soon after the beginning of Alice's invalid days, however, Phoebe received an offer of marriage from a man whom she felt that she could love, and with whom she was sure she could be happy. She had always felt that in the home she was second to Alice, and she confessed once to a friend, "Sometimes I feel a yearning to have a life of my very own; my own house and work and friends; and to feel myself the center of all."

However, much as it cost her, she resolutely put away the thought of this possible happiness because she knew that her sister could not endure her absence in what were very clearly the last days of her life.

In February, 1870, Alice Cary died, and Phoebe from that time on seemed but half a person. To one of her friends she said pathetically: "For thirty years I have gone straight to her bedside as soon as I arose in the morning, and wherever she is, I am sure she wants me now." She tried to take up her work—indeed she felt that in her sister's absence she had double work to do; but it was of no use, and in a little more than a year after her sister's death she too died.

These two sisters, who were so constantly associated for so many years, differed very decidedly in many respects. Alice, the frailer in body, was much the stronger in will power; indeed her ability to force herself to begin and to stick to anything which she thought was to be done was the marvel of her friends. This intense energy often jarred on the more easy-going Phoebe, just as Phoebe's refusal to do literary work unless she were exactly in the right mood, often jarred upon Alice. However, the two sisters never showed their irritation; they were always sweet and gentle in their dealings with each other.

Naturally, Alice's superior energy resulted in an output of literary work which was much larger than Phoebe's. There was a difference, too, besides that of quantity in the work of the sisters. Alice possessed a more objective imagination, that is, she could, in the ballads which she was so fond of writing, place herself in the position of those whom she was describing, and make their feelings her own. Phoebe, on the other hand, in her serious poems held more closely to her own experiences. Both the sisters were very fond of children, though in a different way, Alice feeling for them a sort of mother-love, while Phoebe always felt toward them as though they were comrades. It is the genuine love for children which makes the children's stories and poems of Alice and Phoebe Cary live.

Shortly after Phoebe died one of her friends wrote, "The wittiest woman in America is dead;" and constantly on all sides was heard the saying, "O, if I had only taken down the many wonderfully bright things that I heard her say!" Her parodies have rarely been excelled, and some of her humorous poems are irresistibly funny. The best known perhaps of her parodies is the one on Longfellow's The Day Is Done, of which a stanza may be quoted here. For the original stanza which runs:

  "I see the lights of the village
    Gleam through the rain and the mist,
  And a feeling of sadness comes o'er me,
    That my soul cannot resist:
  A feeling of sadness and longing,
    That is not akin to pain,
  And resembles sorrow only
    As the mist resembles the rain,"

Phoebe Gary substituted the words:

  "I see the lights of the baker
    Gleam through the rain and the mist,
  And a feeling of hunger comes o'er me,
    That my soul cannot resist:
  A feeling of sadness and longing
    That is not like being sick
  And resembles sorrow only,
    As a brickbat resembles a brick."

However, more than for anything else, perhaps, Phoebe Cary will be remembered for her lyric, One Sweetly Solemn Thought. Not long before she died she heard a story of something which this little poem had accomplished, which made her very happy. A gentleman going to China was entrusted with a package for an American boy in China. Arriving at his destination, he failed to find the boy, but was told that he might discover him in a certain gambling house. As he sat and waited, he watched with disgust and loathing the dreadful scenes going on about him. At a table near him sat a young boy and a man of perhaps forty, drinking and playing cards; they were swearing horribly and using the vilest language.

At length, while the older man shuffled and dealt the cards, the boy leaned back in his chair and half unconsciously began to hum, finally singing under his breath Phoebe Cary's hymn, One Sweetly Solemn Thought.

"Where did you learn that hymn?" cried the older gambler abruptly.

"At Sunday School at home," replied the boy, surprised.

The older man threw the cards on the floor. "Come, Harry," he said, "let's get out of this place. I am ashamed that I ever brought you here, and I shall do my best to keep you from entering such a place again."

Together the two passed from the gambling house, and the man who watched them learned later that they were both true to their resolution to live a different life.



  One sweetly solemn thought
     Comes to me o'er and o'er;
  I am nearer home to-day
    Than I ever have been before;

  Nearer my Father's house,
    Where the many mansions be;
  Nearer the great white throne,
    Nearer the crystal sea;

  Nearer the bound of life,
    Where we lay our burdens down;
  Nearer leaving the cross,
    Nearer gaining the crown!

  But lying darkly between,
    Winding down through the night,
  Is the silent, unknown stream,
    That leads at last to the light.

  Closer and closer my steps
    Come to the dread abysm:
  Closer Death to my lips
    Presses the awful chrism.

  Oh, if my mortal feet
    Have almost gained the brink;
  If it be I am nearer home
    Even to-day than I think,

  Father, perfect my trust;
    Let my spirit feel in death
  That her feet are firmly set
    On the rock of a living faith!



  Among the beautiful pictures
    That hang on Memory's wall
  Is one of a dim old forest,
    That seemeth best of all;

  Not for its gnarled oaks olden,
    Dark with the mistletoe;
  Nor for the violets golden
    That sprinkle the vale below;

  Not for the milk-white lilies
    That lean from the fragrant ledge,
  Coquetting all day with the sunbeams,
    And stealing their golden edge;

[Illustration: IN THAT DIM OLD FOREST]

  Nor for the vines on the upland,
    Where the bright red berries rest,
  Nor the pinks, nor the pale sweet cowslip,
    It seemeth to me the best.

  I once had a little brother,
    With eyes that were dark and deep;
  In the lap of that old dim forest
    He lieth in peace asleep:

  Light as the down of the thistle,
    Free as the winds that blow,
  We roved there the beautiful summers,
    The summers of long ago;

  But his feet on the hills grew weary,
    And, one of the autumn eves,
  I made for my little brother
    A bed of the yellow leaves.

  Sweetly his pale arms folded
    My neck in a meek embrace,
  As the light of immortal beauty
    Silently covered his face;

  And when the arrows of sunset
    Lodged in the tree-tops bright,
  He fell, in his saint-like beauty,
    Asleep by the gates of light.

  Therefore, of all the pictures
    That hang on Memory's wall,
  The one of the dim old forest
    Seemeth the best of all.

THE ESCAPE FROM PRISON [Footnote: This selection is taken from Cast Up By the Sea. Paul Grey, smuggler, and owner of a trim little smuggling boat, the Polly, has come to the French coast to meet his French confederate, Captain Dupuis. He expects merely to exchange cargoes, as he has done in the past, and to run back, avoiding revenue cruisers; but Captain Dupuis, who owes Captain Grey money which he has no desire to pay, and whose fingers itch for the prize money to be gained by capturing a smuggler, sends out in his boat a pilot who guides the Polly into a harbor where a French war vessel waits for her. Dick Stone, Grey's right-hand man, advises fighting, but Captain Grey sees the uselessness of this and allows himself and his men to be made prisoners. The selection begins at this point.]

By SIR SAMUEL W. BAKER [Footnote: Sir Samuel W. Baker (1821-1893) was an English traveler and explorer. Besides Cast Up by the Sea, Baker wrote The Rifle and the Hound in Ceylon; The Albert Nyansa; Wild Beasts and their Ways, and other books.]

In an hour after the arrival of the "Polly" in the deceitful port, Paul and his entire crew were marched through the streets of a French village, and were drawn up opposite the prison entrance.

Upon their arrival at the gate they were met by the governor and the principal jailer, who allotted them to various cells in separate parties. Paul, as their captain, was placed in a superior apartment, together with Dick Stone, whom he had requested might be permitted to accompany him.

As the door of the prison had closed upon their admittance to the court-yard, Paul had noticed a remarkably pretty girl about eighteen who had fixed her eyes upon him with extreme earnestness. As he was now led with Dick Stone to the room that they were to occupy he observed that she accompanied the jailer, and appeared to observe him with great interest. Taking from his pocket a guinea that was pierced with a hole, he slipped it into her hand; at the same time laughingly he told her in a few words of broken French to suspend it as a charm around her neck to preserve her from everything English.

Instead of receiving it with pleasure, as he had expected, she simply looked at it with curiosity for an instant, and then, keeping it in her hand, she asked in her native tongue with intense feeling, "Have you seen Victor? My dear brother Victor, a prisoner in England?"

"Silly girl," said the jailer, her father, "England is a large place, and there are too many French prisoners to make it likely that Victor should be known"; at the same time the feelings of the father yielded to a vague hope as he looked inquiringly at Paul.

"There are many fine fellows," answered Paul, "who have had the misfortune to become prisoners of war, but they are all cared for, and receive every attention in England. When was your brother taken?" he asked, as he turned to the handsome dark-eyed girl who had just questioned him.


"A year ago next Christmas," she replied; "and we have only once heard from him; he was then at a place called Falmouth, but we do not know where that is."

"Falmouth!" said Paul; "why, I know the place well; with a fair wind the 'Polly' would make it in a few hours from the spot where I live. Your brother then is imprisoned only half a day's sail from my house!"

"Oh! what good fortune, mon Dieu," exclaimed the excited girl, as she clasped her hands in delight, as though the hour of her brother's deliverance was at hand. "How can we reach him? surely you can help us?"

"Alas! I am also a prisoner," replied Paul. "At this moment my wife is sorrowing alone in our cottage on the cliff, and she is looking vainly upon the sea expecting my return. How can I help you? Believe me, if it were possible, I would." At the recollection of Polly's situation Paul hastily brushed a tear from his eye with the back of his rough hand, which instantly awoke the sympathy of the sensitive girl before him.

"Ha! you are married," she exclaimed. "Is she young, and perhaps beautiful?"

"Young enough for me, and handsomer than most women," replied Paul.

At this moment Dick Stone had lighted his pipe, and as he gave two or three tremendous puffs he screwed his face into a profoundly serio- comic expression and winked his right eye mysteriously at Paul.

"I know the young man," said Dick, who now joined in the conversation, and addressed the jailer whom he had been scrutinizing closely; "I saw him once at the prison in Falmouth. Rather tall?" said Dick, as he surveyed the six-foot form of the jailer.

"Yes," said the jailer, eagerly, "as tall as I am."

"Black hair?" continued the impassive Dick, as he cast his eyes upon the raven locks of both father and daughter.

"Yes, as dark as mine," exclaimed the now excited jailer.

"Roman nose?" said Dick, as he looked at the decided form of the parent's feature that was shared by the handsome girl.

"Precisely so, well arched," replied the father.

"Had not lost an arm?" said Dick.

"No, he had both his arms," said the jailer.

"And his name," said Dick, "was Victor?"

"Victor Dioré!" exclaimed the jailer's daughter.

"Precisely so—that's the man," replied the stoical Dick Stone; "that's the man. I know'd him soon after he was captured; and I believe he's now in Falmouth Jail. I'd almost forgotten his name, for you Mounseers are so badly christened that I can't remember how you're called."

The jailer and his daughter were much affected at this sudden intelligence; there could be no doubt that their new prisoner had seen their lost relative, who appeared to be imprisoned not far from Paul's residence, and their hearts at once warmed toward both the captives.

They were led into a large but rather dark room, scantily furnished, with two trestle-beds, a table, and a couple of benches.

"We must talk of this again," said Paul to the jailer's daughter; "perhaps an exchange of prisoners may be arranged at some future time that may serve us all."

"Yes," added Dick Stone, "I think we can manage it if we're all true friends; and may I ask your name, my dear? for you're the prettiest Mounseer that I've ever set eyes on."

"Léontine," replied the girl.

"Well, Leonteen," continued Dick, "if you'll come and have a chat sometimes up in this cold-looking room I dare say we'll be able to hit off some plan that'll make us all agreeable. I've got a secret to tell you yet, but I don't want to let it out before the old 'un," said Dick, mysteriously, as he winked his eye at her in masonic style; then, putting his lips very close to her pretty ear, he whispered, "I can tell you how to get your brother out of prison; but you must keep it close."

The door had hardly closed upon the jailer and his daughter, who had promised to return with breakfast, when Paul turned quickly toward Dick Stone and exclaimed, "What do you mean, Dick, by such a romance as you have just composed? Surety all is false; you never met the French prisoner at Falmouth?"

"Well," replied Dick, "may be I didn't; but perhaps I did. Who knows?— You see, captain, all's fair in love or war, and it struck me that it's as well to make friends as enemies; now you see we've made friends all at once by a little romance. You see the Mounseers are very purlite people, and so it's better to be purlite when you're in France. You see the pretty little French girl says her brother's in jail in Falmouth; well, I've seen a lot of French prisoners in Falmouth with black hair, and two arms apiece, and a Roman nose; so very likely I've seen her brother. Well, you see, if we can make friends with the jailer, we may p'r'aps get the key of the jail! At all events, it ain't a bad beginning to make friends with the jailer's daughter before we've had our first breakfast in the French prison."

As Dick Stone finished speaking he looked out of the narrow grated window that in the thick stone wall appeared as though it had been intended for musketry; from this aperture he had a beautiful view of the bay and the French corvette, near to which the unfortunate "Polly" was now lying at anchor with the French colors flying at the mizzen.

"Well, that's a bad lookout, I must say," said Dick. "Look here, captain, there's the 'Polly' looking as trim and as saucy, bless her heart! as though we were all on board; and there's the ugly French flag flying, and she don't seem to care more about it than a woman with new ribbons in her bonnet."

Paul looked at his beautiful lugger with bitter feelings. He had sailed in her for many years, and she had become like a member of his family. Although fifteen years old, she had been built of such well-seasoned timber, and had been kept in such excellent repair, that she was better than most vessels of half her age, and he sighed as he now saw her at anchor with the French flag fluttering at her masthead. For a long time he gazed intently upon her without speaking a word; at length he turned sharply 'round, and in a quick, determined voice, he said, "Dick, I'll never live to see the 'Polly' disgraced. If you'll stick by me, Dick, we'll retake her yet, or die!"

For some moments Dick Stone stared Paul carelessly in the face without a reply; he then tapped the bowl of his empty pipe upon the prison wall, and carefully refilling it with tobacco, he once more, lighted it, and puffed for about a minute in perfect silence; he then spoke, after emitting a dense volume of smoke.

"If I'll stick to you, captain? Well, p'r'aps I never have, and p'r'aps Dick Stone's a coward? Well, you see, of course I'll stick to yer; but there's other things to be thought of. What's your plan, captain? It's of no use doing anything without thinking well first. Now if you'll tell me what you mean I'll have a little smoke, just half a pipe, and I'll tell you my opinion."

"My plans are not absolutely defined," said Paul, "but I think that by making friends with the jailer's daughter we may induce her to risk much in the endeavor to rescue her brother. We might prevail upon her to assist in our escape—she might even accompany us to England. Could we only free ourselves from these prison walls on a dark night, when the wind blows strong from the south, why should we not surprise the French crew, and carry off the 'Polly'? Once at sea, there is nothing that could touch her!" Paul's eyes glistened as he spoke, and the muscles stood out on his brawny arm as he clinched his fist, and added, "If I could only once lay hold of Dupuis's throat, and save the 'Polly,' I ask no greater fortune!"

Puff, puff, puff, came in rapid succession from Dick's pipe at these words; at last, the long exhaustive suck arrived in its turn, and the usual cloud of smoke enveloped his head, which always exhilarated his brain.

"Well, captain, d'ye see," replied Dick, "I'll stick to you in anything, and there's no doubt that there's a chance of success if the pretty little Mounseer will only help us. But, you see, from what I know of womankind, they're very fond and very purlite for their brothers, but they won't run much risk for 'em. Now if they're in love they're as good as bulldogs; and so I think it's a pity as how you told her that you'd got a wife a-looking out for you at home! If you'd have told her that you were a single man, and p'r'aps given her a kiss when you gave her the lucky guinea, we might have got a little love to help us, and then we'd have had a better chance, as she'd have gone off with us all of a heap."

"Dick, you have no conscience," replied Paul; "you surely would not deceive the girl in such a heartless manner? No!" continued Paul, "I have told her the truth, and if she can help us I'll do my best to save her brother; but, on the other hand, why should not you, Dick, make yourself agreeable to her? You're not a bad-looking fellow, why should you not do the love-making?"

Dick made no reply, but thoughtfully puffed at-his pipe; then laying down his smoking counselor upon the window-sill he thrust his right hand into a deep breeches pocket, and extracted a black-horn pocket comb, with which he began at once, most carefully to arrange his hair.

Despite the loss of the "Polly" and the misery of his situation Paul burst out laughing as he witnessed Dick's cool determination to prepare for love-making.

"I don't know how these Mounseers begin," said the methodical Dick; "they're a very purlite people, and so they mayn't like our customs. In England we take 'em round the waist with both arms, and give 'em a kiss; but p'r'aps it's better not to begin all at once. I'll just ask her to sit on my knee at first, so as not to frighten her."

"Better not, Dick," said Paul, laughing; "I'm afraid she wouldn't understand your modesty. Only make yourself agreeable, but don't touch her, and let time do the rest."

They were interrupted in their conversation by the turning of the creaking door-lock, and the jailer and his daughter entered with a loaf of black bread and two jars of water and of milk, which they placed upon the table. Léontine had already strung the guinea upon a cord, which was now suspended from her neck.

"Ha! that looks very well!" said Paul; "few French girls wear the
English king's image round their necks."

"I know an Englishman who wears a French girl's picture in his heart," said Dick, who, with a sly wink at Paul as a preface, thus made his first bold advance. "A what?" inquired Léontine.

"A poor devil," replied Dick, "who doesn't care how long he's shut up in a French prison with such a pretty little Mounseer for a jailer."

"Ha! ha! you English know how to pay compliments," answered Léontine, who knew just sufficient English to understand Dick's attempt at French.

"Yes, we're considered a very purlite people," replied Dick, "and we have a purlite custom when we go to prison of shaking hands with the jailer and kissing the hand of his pretty daughter." As Dick said these words he first grasped the hand of the jailer, and then raised to his lips, redolent of tobacco, the hand of Léontine; at the same time he whispered, "Don't forget that I have a secret."

Far from being disconcerted at Dick's politeness, Léontine naively remarked, "You can't tell a secret before three persons; but we shall have plenty of opportunities, for you may pay us a longer visit than may be agreeable."

Dick in reply to this remark suddenly assumed one of his most mysterious expressions, and winking one eye at Léontine, he placed his forefinger upon his lips as though to enjoin silence, and whispered in her ear, "Make an opportunity: the secret's about your brother."

More than two months had passed wearily in the French prison, during which both Paul and Dick Stone had been buoyed up in inaction by the hope of carrying into execution a plan for their escape. The only view from the prison windows was the sea, and the street and beach in the foreground. The "Polly" still lay at anchor in the same spot, as some difficulty had arisen between Captain Dupuis and the captain of the corvette that had to be settled in the law courts.

In the meantime both Paul and Dick Stone had not only become great friends of the jailer, Jean Dioré, and his daughter, but Dick had quickly found an opportunity to disclose his secret, which succeeded in winning the heart of the enterprising Léontine. Dick had made a declaration of love, and to prove his sincerity he proposed that he should conduct her direct to her brother in the English prison, whose release should be effected by an exchange; and he had persuaded her that, if she should aid in the escape of Paul and the entire crew of the "Polly," there would be no difficulty in obtaining her brother's release when the facts should become known to the English authorities. Paul had added his persuasions to those of Dick Stone; he had excited the sister's warmest feelings by painting the joys he would feel in rescuing her brother from a miserable existence, and he had gained her sympathy by a description of the misery and suspense that his own wife must be suffering in her ignorance of all that had befallen him. Léontine was won. She was brave as a lion, and, her determination once formed, she was prepared to act without flinching.

Many times Dick Stone had lighted his pipe, and puffed and considered as he took counsel with Paul on the plan that the latter had proposed. All was agreed upon.

Paul had thus arranged the attempt at escape. All was to be in readiness for the first gale that should blow from either west or south. Léontine had provided him with a couple of large files and a small crowbar about two feet long, which she had purchased in the village with money supplied by Paul; these she had introduced to his room by secreting them beneath her clothes.

At various times she had purchased large supplies of string twine in skeins, which to avoid suspicion she had described as required for making nets; these she had also introduced daily, until sufficient had been collected for the manufacture of ropes, at which both Paul and Dick Stone worked incessantly during the night, and which they concealed in the daytime within their mattresses, by cutting a hole beneath. Whenever the time should arrive it had been arranged that Léontine was to procure the keys of the cells in which the crew of the "Polly" were confined, and she was to convey the prisoners at night into the apartment occupied by Paul and Dick, whence they were to descend from the window by a rope into the fosse that surrounded the prison; fortunately, this ditch was dry, and Léontine was to fix a stake into the ground about the fosse, from which she was to suspend a knotted rope after dark, to enable the prisoners to ascend upon the opposite side.

The great difficulty would be in avoiding the sentry, who was always on guard within fifty paces of the spot where they would be forced to descend, and whence they must afterward ascend from the ditch. The affair was to be left entirely in the hands of Léontine, who assured Paul and Dick that she would manage the sentry if they would be ready at the right moment to assist her. When freed from the prison, they were to make a rush to the beach, seize the first boat, of which many were always at hand, and board and capture the "Polly"; once on board the trusty lugger, in a westerly or southerly gale, and Paul knew that nothing could overtake her.

Such was the plan agreed upon, and everything had been carefully prepared and in readiness for some days, but the favorable weather had not yet arrived. Daily and hourly Paul looked from the grated windows upon his beloved "Polly," which lay still at anchor idle in the bay, about fifty yards from the French corvette.

At length, as early one morning he as usual looked out from his prison, he saw a boat pulling from the shore, followed quickly by several others conveying cargo, and steering for the "Polly;" the bustle upon the deck, and the refitting of ropes and rigging, plainly discernible from the prison window, left no doubt upon Paul's mind that the "Polly" was about to leave the harbor, and perhaps be lost to him forever.

At this painful sight Dick lighted his pipe, and smoked with violence until the tobacco was half consumed, when suddenly, in a fit of excitement that was quite unusual, he hastily put his adviser in his pocket, and seizing a file from beneath his mattress he immediately commenced work upon the bottom of an iron bar that protected the narrow window.

"That's right, Dick," said Paul; "now or never! The clouds are hurrying up from the sou'-west, and I think it's coming on to blow; as old Mother Lee says, 'Luck comes from the sou-west'; so bear a hand, and give me the file when you get tired."

As Paul had observed, the scud was flying rapidly across the sky from the right quarter, and both men worked hard alternately, and in an hour they had divided the thick iron bar close to the base.

"Now for the top," said Dick. "We'll soon cut it through, although it's harder work, as we can't put our weight to the file."

"Never mind the file," said Paul, who now grasped the severed bar in his iron hands; "with such a purchase I could wrench the bar asunder. Something shall give way," he said, as with the force of Samson he exerted every muscle, and wrenched the bar from its loosened base. The stone in which it was fixed first crumbled at the joint, and then suddenly cracked, and Paul fell sprawling on his back with the bar in his hands, while a heavy fragment of stone fell upon the floor.

"Take care, captain," said Dick; "gently with the stones. We shall alarm the jailer if we make so much noise. Why, you've settled the job in one pull!"

"Here, Dick," continued Paul, as he sprung from the floor, "take the bar while I move a stone from the side with the crow. We won't take it right out, lest the jailer should notice it if he comes with the breakfast; but we'll loosen it so that we can remove it quickly when necessary, as the window is too narrow for our shoulders."


Paul then inserted the thin edge of the crowbar, and by gently working it backward and forward, he removed the stones and enlarged the aperture sufficiently to admit the passage of a man; he then replaced the stones, together with the bar, and so arranged the window that no one would have observed any disturbance unless by a close inspection. Hardly had they completed their work when footsteps were heard without, succeeded by the turning of the key in the creaking lock of their door. In an instant Dick, who had lighted his pipe, leaned upon the window- sill and looked steadily out of the window; at the same time he puffed such dense clouds of smoke as would have effectually screened any. damage that had been done by the work of the crowbar.

The door opened, and fortunately Léontine appeared instead of her father. She brought the breakfast.

"Quick!" she exclaimed, "there is no time to lose. The wind has changed, and people say we shall have a gale from the sou'-west. The 'Polly' is to sail to-morrow. Captain Dupuis has loaded her, and he will himself depart in the morning should the wind be fair. You must all get ready for the work," continued the determined girl, as her large eyes flashed with energy.

"We have not been idle, my pretty Léontine," said Paul, as he exhibited their morning's work, "but we now depend upon you. It will be quite dark at eight o'clock. You must have the rope ready secured to this small crowbar, driven into the earth on the other side of the fosse; the bar is sharp and heavy; it will make no noise if you can manage to strike it into the ground in exactly the same spot three or four times, and simply hang this loop upon it, pressed close down to the base." At the same time he gave her the bar, and a rope coiled, about twenty feet in length. Paul continued. "You must also be punctual in bringing the other prisoners here at half-past eight, and tell them to take their shoes off and to tie them round their waists. But how about the sentry?" asked Paul.

"Don't be afraid," said Léontine; "I have already arranged everything this morning. Fortune has favored us; François is to be on guard to- night; the guard is relieved at eight o'clock, at which time he will come on duty, therefore we have nothing to fear for some hours. I will manage François; leave him to me. He is an old lover of mine, and I have appointed to meet him to-night."

At this confession, thus boldly made, Dick Stone puffed violently at his pipe, and was almost concealed by his own smoke, when Léontine continued:

"He is a sad fellow, and has given me much trouble, but I shall pay him out to-night. Look here, Dick," she continued, "if you are worth having you'll help me quickly to-night, for I shall depend upon you. I have agreed to meet François this evening at half-past eight, as I have pretended to accept his love. To avoid detection (as he will be on guard), I am to be disguised as a soldier, and he will send me the clothes and arms to-day. I shall keep my appointment, and engage him in conversation so closely that he will not hear you; but at the last moment you must be ready to rush upon him and secure him, while I endeavor to prevent him from giving an alarm. At the same time," continued Léontine, "you must promise not to hurt him, for François is a good fellow, and is very fond of me."

"Only let me get hold of him," cried Dick Stone.

"Will you?" replied Léontine; "then the enterprise ceases at the very beginning. You shall not escape unless you swear that no harm shall befall François."

"Do not be afraid," said Paul; but he continued: "It may be a difficult affair if he is a powerful man—what size is he?"

"Oh," replied Léontine, laughing, "a little fellow, about as big as I am. You could soon manage poor Francois; he would be a mere child in the grasp of such a man as yourself."

"All right," said Paul; "then there's no fear of murder; depend upon me, Léontine, no harm shall touch him."

"Mind you seize the right man," said the gay Léontine, "when I give the signal, as I shall be in a soldier's uniform and you may mistake me for Francois. The signal will be 'A friend;' the instant that I give the word, seize and disarm him before he can fire his musket. You will then have two muskets, mine and that of Francois, with which you must take your chance in boarding the 'Polly.'"

"That will do," said Paul; "let me only set foot on the 'Polly's' deck, and I'll soon settle accounts with Monsieur Dupuis. But now," added Paul, "we are agreed upon all points, and we depend upon you, Léontine; do not forget to visit the beach, and see that the oars and a boat- hook, with a sharp ax to cut the cable, are placed in readiness within a large boat, to which you must guide us when we leave the prison."

"Never fear," said Léontine; "I shall not fail in my part, and I shall give the signal as the clock chimes half-past eight; you must be ready on the instant. Here is a letter," continued the girl, as the tears started to her eyes, "that I have written for my father; you must leave it on the table when you escape, and it will explain all; he will then, perhaps, forgive me when he knows that I risk my life for Victor." Saying which, she left the room and locked the door behind her.

Léontine now hurried her preparations, while the day passed wearily away to those who were awaiting the hour of their deliverance.

Paul and Dick Stone counted the hours as the neighboring church clock struck heavily on the bell.

"We shall run to the cove in twelve hours," said Paul, "if this breeze lasts; it's blowing a gale out at sea, and the 'Polly' 'll fly like a witch on a broomstick."

"We've got to take her first," replied the wary Dick. "There's many a slip 'twixt the cup and the lip!"

"We are short of weapons, no doubt," said Paul; "but we must take off the sword-bayonets from the muskets, and give them to two of the men. I will be first on board, and knock down Dupuis. Let the men rush to the main-mast and secure the arms from the rack the moment that they reach the deck, while you, Dick, seize the helm. I will tell off four men to loose the sails and to cut the cable directly that we get on board. This will leave us ten men to do the fighting. If all goes well we shall find the better part of the French crew down below, and, once in possession of the deck, they will be at our mercy. This gale of wind will start the 'Polly' like a wild duck the instant that the cable is cut, and we shall be round the corner of the island before the corvette can bring her guns to bear upon us. Then, with a dark night and a heavy gale, the 'Polly' can take care of herself."

The day at length passed away, and the sun set. The wind roared through the narrow streets of the town, and whistled loudly around the pointed towers of the old prison. "There could not be a better night," said Paul; "the wind roars like a lion, and nothing will be heard by the sentry."

As he was speaking the clock struck eight. As the last tone of the bell died away the lock of the door creaked as the key turned from the outside; and presently, without a sound of footsteps, thirteen strapping fellows, who had been liberated by Léontine, softly entered the room, carrying their shoes strapped to their belts, as had been directed by Paul.

No time was lost in useless greeting; but the severed bar of the window was at once made use of as a lever to remove the heavy stones, and in less than ten minutes an aperture was made sufficiently large for an exit.

Paul now fastened the rope that had been concealed in his mattress to the center of the iron bar; then, lowering the other end from the window until it reached the fosse, he fixed the bar across the base, so that it was secured on either side by the masonry.

All was now ready, and, lest they should be disturbed, Dick Stone, having received the key from Léontine, locked the door on the inside.

Paul went first. It was with some difficulty that he squeezed his broad shoulders through the narrow opening; but once without the wall he nimbly lowered himself to the bottom, a depth of about sixty feet.

In a much shorter time than might be supposed the active sailors had succeeded in reaching the bottom of the fosse, without having made the slightest noise. The wind blew louder than before; there was no moon, and merely a faint light was given at intervals by the stars that every now and then peeped from between the driving clouds.

Carefully leading the way, Paul crossed the broad fosse, and felt with his hand the opposite wall, against which he expected to find the rope that was to have been arranged by Léontine. He was followed noiselessly by the crew for about twenty yards, when he suddenly halted as he caught the dangling rope.

With extreme care Paul now climbed, hand over hand, to the top, having previously whispered to Dick Stone to hold the end of the rope, and to ascend when he should give a jerk as a signal of safety.

Arrived at the top, on the soft green turf at the edge of the moat, Paul lay flat upon the ground, and listened. He could see nothing, therefore he knew that he could not be seen; but he fancied that he could hear a suppressed voice in the direction of the sentry. He gave a slight jerk to the rope, and presently Dick Stone arrived, and crept to Paul's side, quickly followed by all the others. They all remained flat upon the grass, which, being about a foot in height, effectually concealed them in the darkness of the night. Paul now crept forward upon his hands and knees, followed in the same manner by Dick Stone; the other men had received orders to jump up and join them immediately upon hearing the signal, "A friend."

In a few minutes Paul was within a dozen yards of the sentry; and as he and Dick then lay flat upon the earth they could faintly distinguish two figures standing close together, and in intervals between the gusts they could hear voices.

We will return to Léontine.

She had not failed in any of her arrangements. The unsuspecting François had fallen into her snare, and, delighted with the assignation, he had run great risk in the hope of securing the love of the charming Léontine. He had borrowed for her a comrade's uniform and arms; and thus accoutred as a soldier, she had met him at the appointed hour. They were now standing together by the edge of the moat, and Léontine had listened to his warm declarations of affection. François was enraptured; for more than a year he had vainly sought to win her love. As the belle of the village, Léontine had many admirers; a certain lieutenant was reported to be a favored suitor; thus what chance was there for a private such as François? True or false, the jealous heart of François had believed these reports, and he had yielded to despair. Judge of his transport when, within the last few hours, he had been led to hope; and now, when he had nearly given her up as lost, he almost held her in his arms. Alas! for military discipline when beauty leads the attack! François thought of nothing but his love. There was a railing by the edge of the moat, against which Léontine had rested her musket; the unwary sentry did the same; and the two weapons leaned peacefully side by side, as the soldier, intoxicated by his love, suddenly caught her round the waist with both arms and pressed his lips to her cheek. At this moment the dull clang of the prison clock struck the half hour. Struggling in his embrace, Léontine exclaimed: "Oh, if I could call 'a friend!'"

At the same instant with both her hands she slipped into his mouth a wooden instrument called a gag, that was used to silence uproarious prisoners. The signal, "A friend," had been given in a loud voice, as though in reply to the usual challenge, and before the unlucky François could relieve himself from the gag he was caught from behind in the tremendous grasp of Paul's arms, while Dick Stone by mistake rushed upon Léontine; a vigorous smack on the face from her delicate hand immediately undeceived him.

"Take that musket," whispered Léontine, quickly, "and come along."

At the same time she seized the remaining musket, while Paul pinioned the arms of their prisoner with his handkerchief, and threatened him with instant death should he resist.

No time was lost. Paul threw the sentry over his shoulder as though he had been a lamb, and the whole party hurried after Léontine, who had led the way to the beach.

This affair had been managed so dexterously and quietly that no sound had been heard except the reply, "A friend," that was the preconcerted signal of attack; but upon arrival at the beach the rattling of the shingle as the large party hurried toward the boat threatened to attract a dangerous attention.

A large number of boats were drawn up upon the beach, but Léontine, without a moment's hesitation, led Paul and his party to one that had the oars already arranged; and the powerful crew, seizing it by the bow and the stern, ran it along the steep incline and launched it through the waves.

Not a word had been spoken, but there was a sound of many feet as the crew jumped into the boat that could not be mistaken. Paul laid his struggling burden upon the beach, and Léontine, before she leaped into the boat, whispered in the captive's ear:

"François, if you give the alarm I'll never love you again." With this coquettish adieu she followed Paul and Dick Stone, who were the last of the party.

"Steer straight for the 'Polly,' and give way, my lads! for there's no time to lose," said Paul, who had taken his position in the bow of the boat with Dick Stone, both of whom were armed with muskets, while two men with sword-bayonets were ready to follow them.

"Make a rush on board," said Paul, "and knock down everybody without asking questions; then seize the arms from the rack and chest."

The water was deep in the rocky bay; thus the "Polly" was moored to a buoy little more than two hundred yards from shore; a light was visible on board, and the lanterns of the corvette were also burning about fifty paces distant, where she lay moored by stem and stern.

They now pulled swiftly but silently toward the lugger. Paul's heart bounded with hope, while Dick Stone, as cool as ice, but determined upon the event, waited for the command. They neared the vessel. "What boat's that?" was the sudden challenge from the lugger's deck, as their boat came within a couple of oars' length. "A friend!" shouted Léontine in French, and almost in the same instant a man in the bow of the boat caught hold of the mizzen shrouds of the lugger with his boat-hook, and held on.

Paul seized a rope, and in one bound he was upon the lugger's deck, while Dick Stone followed like his shadow. To knock down the first man with a double-handed thrust with the barrel of his musket was the work of a moment, at the same instant Dick struck and felled a Frenchman who had rushed to the arm-chest. A shot was now fired by one of the French crew, and several men made a dash at the arm-rack, but Paul was there before them, and with the butt end of his musket he struck down the leader of the party.

At this moment a loud shrill cry of alarm was heard from the shore.

"Ha, le sacre François!" exclaimed Léontine, who had in the meantime attached the deserted boat to the lugger's stern. "Ha, le misérable!" she cried; "this is a return for my love!"

Two or three shots were now fired by the French crew, but without other results than to alarm the ship-of-war; the drum beat to quarters, lights were seen at her ports; a tremendous flash was accompanied by the report of a cannon as she fired an alarm-gun; this was quickly answered by a shot from a battery above the town.

The bells of the church and the prison rang wildly as shot after shot was fired from the battery, and the alarm spread like wild-fire throughout the port.

In the meantime, while the fight had been hot upon the "Polly's" decks, Captain Dupuis, who had been asleep when the vessel was first boarded, now rushed up from the cabin, and meeting Paul he fired a pistol within a few feet of his chest; fortunately, at that moment Paul was in the act of raising his musket, and the ball lodged within the tough walnut stock; the next instant the weapon fell with a crash upon Dupuis's skull, who reeled backward, and stumbling against the low bulwarks, he fell overboard and sunk.

Dick Stone, with his musket in one hand that he had not yet discharged, was now standing at the helm. The English crew had gained the arms from the rack, and several shots were fired as they drove the French toward the bows of the lugger, following them up with the bayonet. Many of the French jumped overboard, calling loudly to the man-of-war for assistance, and those who were down below were already helpless, as the companion ladder was guarded by two armed men. The surprise was complete; Léontine had hauled her boat alongside, and had climbed on board; the cable was cut, and the sails were let loose; but the danger had increased. The French crew who had jumped overboard called to the corvette to fire and sink the lugger. This they had hitherto been afraid to do, as their own countrymen were on board. A blue light was now burned upon the decks of the corvette, and distinctly illumined the scene just as the sails of the "Polly" filled, as her head turned from the severed cable, and she met the full force of the gale from shore. In an instant she leaned over, and as the water rippled from her bows and the boom was slacked off she started like a wild duck frightened from its nest.

"Hurrah! hurrah! hurrah!" rang three hearty British cheers as the clipper lugger glided rapidly through the dark water and passed the terrible broadside of the corvette within fifty or sixty yards. But hardly had the "Polly" cleared the deadly row of guns, when, a flash! and the shock seemed to sweep her deck as the dense smoke rolled across her in the midst of the roar of a twenty-four-pounder fired from the last gun of the tier.

A terrible crash almost immediately followed the shock, and the painter or rope that attaches the boat to the stern of the lugger suddenly dangled loosely in the water, as the shot had dashed the boat to atoms; fortunately the "Polly" had just passed the fatal line of fire. Another wild "hurrah!" replied to the unsuccessful gun, as the lugger, released from the boat's weight, seemed to fly still quicker through the water.

"Take the helm for a moment," said Dick to a sailor by his side, and running amidships he called upon Paul, "Give a hand, captain, and we'll get the Long Tom round."

In an instant Paul put his powerful shoulder to the long six-pounder that worked on a pivot, and together, with joint exertions, they trained the gun upon the stern windows of the corvette. Dick Stone had just beforehand lighted his pipe when standing at the helm, and as the long gun bore upon its object he suddenly pushed Paul upon one side, and emptied his fiery bowl upon the touch-hole. Bang! went the gun, as the six-pound shot crashed through the cabin windows of the corvette, and through the various bulk-heads, raking her from stem to stern.

"Hurrah!" again shouted the crew, who like true British sailors were ready for any fight without reckoning the odds when the cannon once began to speak, while Paul and several men sponged and reloaded the long gun, as the corvette had lowered several boats to give chase.

"Hurrah for the saucy 'Polly!'" shouted Paul, as he and Dick now trained the gun upon the leading boat; but at that moment they turned the sharp headland of the rocky island, and both the corvette and her boats were obscured from their view.

It was blowing hard, but the water in the bay was perfectly smooth, as the wind was directly off the shore, and the "Polly" flew like a race- horse toward the open sea. In a few minutes she passed the last headland, and rushed at foaming speed over the long swell of the Atlantic. With the gale fairly on her quarter, there was nothing that could touch the "Polly." There was no fear of a chase, although the heavy booming of the alarm-guns could still be heard in the distance.

Three Frenchmen had been killed in the fight, and their bodies, which now lay on deck, were thrown overboard; two were prisoners down below; the remainder of the crew had escaped by jumping overboard, with the exception of the treacherous Captain Dupuis, who had sunk when knocked down by Paul.

Dick Stone was now at the helm; his pipe was well alight; and could his features have been distinguished in the dark they would be seen to wear an unusually cheerful expression as he said to Paul, "It wouldn't have been purlite of us to leave the Mounseers without a salute, and without my pipe we couldn't have fired the gun. It's a wonderful thing is a pipe! Ain't it, captain?"

"Nor'-nor'-east is the course, Dick," replied Paul, who was at that moment thinking of his wife, and the happiness it would be to meet her on the following day; at the same time he was anxious lest any misfortune should have occurred during his long absence.

"Nor'-nor-east it is, captain," replied Dick, with a sailor's promptitude; "but I can't help larfing when I think of Captain Doopwee, who has put a cargo on board the 'Polly' all for nothing, and has got knocked on the head into the bargain. Well, sarve him right, sarve him right," continued Dick, musingly; "he was a, very purlite varmint, too purlite to be honest, by a long chalk." After this curt biographical memoir of the late Captain Dupuis, Dick Stone applied himself to his pipe and kept the "Polly's" course N.N.E.

While Paul and Dick Stone were upon deck Léontine was lying upon a cot within the cabin. The excitement of the day had nearly worn her out, and despite the uneasy movement of the vessel, which tried her more severely than any danger, she fell asleep in the uniform of a private in the French chasseurs, and she dreamed happily that her brother Victor was released.



Almost every ancient or primitive people makes an attempt to explain how the world and human beings came into existence. They all take it for granted that things did not simply "happen," but that some being with intelligence had a hand in the making of things. Accounts as told by various peoples are here given.

There were various stories of the creation told by the Greeks and Romans, but the accounts differed only in detail. Most of the Greeks believed that there was a time when the earth and the sea and the sky did not exist. All the elements of which they are made existed, but were jumbled together in a confused mass, which was called Chaos. Over this Chaos ruled the deities Erebus or Darkness, and Nox or Night, although it would seem that there could not have been much need of rulers. Strangely enough, the children of this gloomy pair were Aether and Hemera, who stood for Light and Day, and they felt that if they were to become rulers, they wanted a more cheerful realm than Chaos seemed to be. With the help of Eros (Love), they created Gaea (The Earth), Uranus (The Sky), and Pontus (The Sea). Uranus married Gaea, and before long these two took the power from Aether and Hemera and reigned in their stead. To this god and goddess were born twelve children—six sons and six daughters—who were known as Titans. As they were of gigantic size and were extremely strong, their father feared that they might treat him as he had treated Aether, and to prevent this he shut them up in an underground cavern.

Naturally Gaea was not pleased with this treatment of her children, so she helped Saturn, the youngest of the Titans, to escape, and gave him a scythe with which he might revenge himself on his father.

After defeating Uranus, Saturn released all his brothers and sisters, and made them swear to be faithful to him as the new ruler. He then chose as his queen Rhea, a goddess who was both good and beautiful, and began his reign in happiness.

When his first child was born, however, Saturn remembered that Uranus had foretold his overthrow by one of his own children, and to prevent such a disaster he did a very strange and heartless thing—-he swallowed his new-born son. Five children he got rid of in this manner, but when the sixth, Jupiter, was born, Rhea resolved to save him. She therefore wrapped up a stone and gave it to her husband instead of the child, and he, suspecting nothing, swallowed it. The young god grew up in concealment, and very rapidly he grew, for when he was but a year old he was strong enough to make successful war on his father and to take the supreme power from him. And then, strangest thing of all, he forced Saturn to disgorge all the children he had swallowed.

Either because he was generous or because he thought his kingdom was too great for him, Jupiter divided it with his brothers, Neptune and Pluto, but he himself remained supreme.

The gods themselves dwelt not on the earth, but above the top of Olympus, a mountain peak of Greece; and thus the entire Earth was uninhabited. However, it was not allowed to remain so, for Jupiter appointed Prometheus, a Titan, who had helped him in his war against Saturn, to make an inhabitant for the Earth. Prometheus accordingly moulded a man out of clay, and taking him before the gods, persuaded each one to bestow upon him some gift. A woman was made later, and from these two were descended all the peoples of the earth.


As the Norse peoples, in their land which for so large a part of the year was ice-bound, dreaded the long, hard winter, and looked forward to the blessings brought by the summer, they imagined that the evil forces in the world worked through cold and darkness, the good forces through warmth and light. Thus they feared and hated the "frost giants," while they loved and reverenced the gods, whom they pictured as living in a world of brightness and warmth.

According to the Norse religion, or mythology, the world began in a contest between heat and cold. At first there was no earth; nothing existed except the yawning abyss, Ginungagap, which separated the world, or spacer, of mist and cold and darkness, on the north, from the world of fire and brightness, on the south. The mist world was called Niflheim; the fire world, Muspelheim. From a great fountain in the mist world there sprang twelve rivers, which after flowing far from their source tumbled their waters into the Ginungagap. Here the water was all turned to ice, with which in time the huge abyss was filled. Sparks and warm winds from Muspelheim, coming into contact with this ice, melted it, so that there hung always over the ice chasm a dense vapor. This, in turn, gradually took shape, and formed the giant Ymir and the cow Audhumbla; and for a season these were the only two creatures in all the expanse of space. Ymir fed upon the cow's milk, and she, in turn, got what nourishment she could by licking the salt and the hoarfrost from the ice.

One day as the cow licked a huge ice block, there appeared the hair of some being, and as she remained persistently at the same lump, within a short time she had set free a beautiful, strong god—the god Bori. Bori was the ancestor of all the gods, as Ymir was the ancestor of all the giants; and since the gods were as good as the frost giants were evil, it was plain enough to both that they could not live together.

The struggle between the races lasted for ages on ages, but finally Odin, Vili and Ve, the grandsons of Bori, succeeded in putting to death Ymir, the greatest and worst of the giants. And in killing him they accomplished much more than they expected; for from his wounds the blood gushed in such streams that it drowned all the wicked giants except Bergelmir and his wife, who saved themselves in a boat. Had they, too, but died, there would have been, to the end of time, no giants to trouble the gods; but their descendants kept up from Jotunheim, their home at the end of the world, their plots and warrings against the gods.

Odin, who was from the first the wisest and strongest of the gods, gazed upon the huge corpse of the slain giant, and then called the other gods about him.

"We cannot waste," he said, "the body of this giant. Where is the use of our power and wisdom if we cannot, out of this evil thing, make something good and beautiful?"

Eagerly the gods set to work. It was by far the most interesting task they had ever been called upon to perform, and right well they performed it. In the exact center of the ice abyss they formed, of Ymir's flesh, the earth, and about it and through it they caused his blood to flow, as the sea, the rivers and the lakes. Of his teeth they made steep cliffs to front the sea, and of his bones they formed mountains and hills. His curly hair became grass and trees and flowers, and his eyebrows were set about the new earth as a high fence, to keep out the revengeful giants. Then, taking up the great skull, the gods set it over the earth to form the arch of the heavens, while the brains that it had contained they scattered about as clouds.

No wonder the gods were pleased with their work! But Odin saw that there was one thing lacking.

"Were we ourselves to dwell on this new created earth," he said, "it would be well; for to a god's eyes all things are clear. But those whom we shall fashion to inhabit it shall see with other eyes than ours, and lights will be needed—lights for day, and lights for night."

This was comparatively easy, after the work that had already been performed. All the gods set to work catching sparks from Muspelheim, and there was great rivalry as to which one should collect most. Some of the sparks were scattered through the sky as stars, but the brightest ones were put aside and kept for a greater purposes. When enough had been gathered, the gods made from the whitely glowing ones the moon; from the fiery red and golden ones, the sun. These lights they placed in chariots, to which were harnessed swift, tireless steeds; but it was evident to all that the steeds could not be trusted to take the chariots across the sky unguided. Feeling that they could not spare two of their own number for this work, the gods chose Sol (sun) and Mani (moon), the daughter and son of a giant, who had named his children after the new lights because of their beauty. The young drivers were given instructions as to just the hours when they must begin their journeys across the sky, as to how rapidly they must drive, and as to the paths they must take; and never did the gods find reason to be dissatisfied with the work of Sol and Mani.

Then two more chariots were made. To one was harnessed a black horse, named Hrimfaxi, whose mane dropped hoarfrost and whose bit scattered dew; while to the other was fastened the beautiful silver-white steed Skinfaxi, from whose shining mane beams of light were shed through all the earth. The giantess Night was entrusted with the first of these chariots, while the young god Day was made the driver of the other. Each was told to drive about the earth once each twenty-four hours.

The gods could make all these beautiful things, but they could not keep the giants from making ugly and evil things; and so there were two fierce wolves, set on by the giants, who constantly chased the sun and moon across the sky, attempting to catch and devour them. Occasionally one of these wolves would overtake his prey, and would start to swallow it, thus producing what was known on earth as an eclipse. But always, in some way or other, they were frightened away before the light of the heavens was utterly destroyed. When the gods had expressed their pleasure in all that had so far been done, Odin said, "Where shall we fix our own dwelling? Beyond the earth, beyond the ocean, live the giants; but neither on the earth, nor in the earth, nor above the earth s there any living thing." "You mistake, Father Odin," cried one of his sons. "If you but look down, you will see that within the earth are many living things."

All the gods looked down, and there, sure enough, were innumerable little creatures crawling in and out of the earth. They had been bred by the earth, and were little better than maggots; but the gods gave them a form which somewhat resembled that of the gods themselves, though smaller, and gave them intelligence and wonderful strength. Some of the new little creatures were ugly and dark and deformed; these the gods called gnomes or dwarfs, and to them they gave homes underground, with power over all that was hidden in the earth. But for the beautiful, fair creatures whom they called elves and fairies, the gods made a home somewhat above the earth, where they might live always among flowers and birds and butterflies.

"And now," said Odin, "let us build our own home in the heavens, above that of the fairies. This green earth which we have made we shall reserve for a race to be, which shall be our especial care."

Far in the blue heavens, therefore, above the mountain tops, above the clouds, was built the wonderful city of Asgard, home of the gods. In the center was the palace Gladsheim, of pure gold, within whose precious hall there were set golden thrones for all the gods. Odin had, too, a great palace of his own, called Valhalla, and each god and each goddess had a home built of precious metals and adorned with gleaming stones.

Then, last of all, Father Odin turned his thoughts to the making of man. With two of his brother gods he walked, one day, on the seashore in the beautiful empty earth which they had made; and suddenly he saw at his feet the trunks of two trees, an ash and an elm.

"These will serve our purpose," said Odin. But even after he had spoken he hesitated long, for he knew that it was a solemn thing which they were about to do-this making of human beings with souls and with the power to suffer. At last he breathed upon the logs, and behold! they lived and moved, and assumed a form like that of the gods themselves. The other two gods bestowed upon them intelligence and beauty; and then, with blessings upon the newly created pair, the three gods took their way back to Asgard.

From this first man and woman sprang all the human race, which dwelt upon the earth under the constant care of the gods. Sometimes, at sunset, men and women standing in the fields would fancy they caught gleams from the golden palaces of the gods in the heavens; and often, when the rain had washed the air, they saw clearly the gorgeous bridge over which the gods passed from their city of Asgard to the earth. For this bridge was nothing else than the rainbow.


The various tribes and families of American Indians held different views as to the origin of the world. Some views differed but slightly, while in other instances absolutely dissimilar stories were told. One of the Algonkin tribes told how the queen of heaven, Atahensic, had a grievous quarrel with her lord, Atahocan. Furious, the king of the heavens seized his wife and threw her over the walls of the sky. Down, down, she fell toward the vast abyss of waters which filled all space. But as she was about to sink into the water, suddenly a tortoise raised its back above the surface of the waters, and thus afforded her a resting place. The tortoise grew to an immense size, and finally became the dwelling place of all human beings. The Indians believed that the attempts of the tortoise, wearied of one position, to settle itself more comfortably, caused the earthquakes.

A tradition of the Ottawa Indians is that the earth was found in the claws and jaws of a muskrat. It grew and grew upon the surface of the water, and the Great Spirit, who sat above watching its growth, sent out a wolf and told him to run around the earth and then return to him, that he might see how large the new island had become. Within a short time the wolf was back, so the Great Spirit knew that the earth had not yet become very large. Later he sent out the same messenger again, and this time the wolf was gone for two years. A third time he sent the wolf forth, and as he returned no more, the Great Spirit knew that the earth had become a huge place, fit to live upon.

In the legends of the Athapasca, as in those we have just read, we hear of the great world of water. A mighty bird, "whose eyes were fire, whose glances were lightning and the clapping of whose wings was thunder," suddenly flew down and moved along the surface of the water. Instantly the earth rose and remained above the surface of the water, and this same all-powerful bird then called into being the different animals.

The Quiché have a similar legend, but it is very quaintly phrased: "This is the first word and the first speech. There were neither men nor brutes; neither birds, fish, nor crabs, stick nor stone, valley nor mountain, stubble nor forest, nothing but the sky. The face of the land was hidden. There was naught but the silent sea and the sky. There was nothing joined, nor any sound, nor thing that stirred; neither any to do evil, nor to rumble in the heavens, nor a walker on foot; only the silent waters, only the pacified ocean, only it in its calm. Nothing was but stillness, and rest, and darkness, and the night." A mighty wind passed over the surface of this water, and at the sound of it the solid land arose.

The Indian legends as to the creation of man are as varied as those of the creation of the world. Some relate that human beings simply sprang from trees or from stones, but most of them agree in regarding the Great Spirit, uncreated and eternal, as the creator of man.

The Ojibway legend tells of two cranes, a male and a female, created by the Great Spirit in the upper world and sent through an opening in the sky to seek a home for themselves on the earth. They were told that they might choose any spot as their home, and that upon making choice they would immediately be changed into a man and a woman. They visited one place after another, and finally made choice of a land about Lake Superior, because here they were certain that there would always be plenty of water and plenty of fish for food. As soon as they alighted and folded their wings, the Great Spirit turned them into human beings.

The Winnebago Indians believed that after the Great Spirit had created the earth and the trees and the grass, he took a piece out of his heart and thereof made a man. Later he made a woman, but a bit of ordinary flesh served to make her. Thus, the Winnebagoes said, man was wise and great, but woman was much wanting in sense.

[Footnote: From The Idea of a University.]


Hence it is that it is almost a definition of a gentleman to say he is one who never inflicts pain. This description is both refined and, as far as it goes, accurate. He is mainly occupied in merely removing the obstacles which hinder the free and unembarrassed action of those about him; and he concurs with their movements rather than takes the initiative himself. His benefits may be considered as parallel to what are called comforts or conveniences in arrangements of a personal nature; like an easy chair or a good fire, which do their part in dispelling cold and fatigue, though nature provides both means of rest and animal heat without them. The true gentleman in like manner carefully avoids whatever may cause a jar or a jolt in the minds of those with whom he is cast—all clashing of opinion, or collision of feeling, all restraint, or suspicion, or gloom, or resentment; his great concern being to make every one at his ease and at home. He has his eyes on all his company; he is tender towards the bashful, gentle towards the distant, and merciful towards the absurd; he can recollect to whom he is speaking; he guards against unseasonable allusions, or topics which may irritate; he is seldom prominent in conversation, and never wearisome. He makes light of favors while he does them, and seems to be receiving when he is conferring. He never speaks of himself except when compelled, never defends himself by a mere retort; he has no ears for slander or gossip, is scrupulous in imputing motives to those who interfere with him, and interprets everything for the best. He is never mean or little in his disputes, never takes unfair advantage, never mistakes personalities or sharp sayings for arguments, or insinuates evil which he dare not say out. From a long-sighted prudence, he observes the maxim of the ancient sage, that we should ever conduct ourselves towards our enemy as if he were one day to be our friend. He has too much good sense to be affronted at insults, he is too well employed to remember injuries, and too indolent to bear malice. He is patient, forbearing, and resigned, on philosophical principles; he submits to pain, because it is inevitable, to bereavement, because it is irreparable, and to death, because it is his destiny.

If he engages in controversy of any kind, his disciplined intellect preserves him from the blundering discourtesy of better, perhaps, but less educated minds; who, like blunt weapons, tear and hack instead of cutting clean, who mistake the point in argument, waste their strength on trifles, misconceive their adversary, and leave the question more involved than they find it. He may be right or wrong in his opinion, but he is too clear-headed to be unjust; he is as simple as he is forcible, and as brief as he is decisive. Nowhere shall we find greater candor, consideration, indulgence: he throws himself into the minds of his opponents, he accounts for their mistakes. He knows the weakness of human reason as well as its strength, its province and its limits.

If he be an unbeliever, he will be too profound and large-minded to ridicule religion or to act against it; he is too wise to be a dogmatist or fanatic in his infidelity. He respects piety and devotion; he even supports institutions as venerable, beautiful, or useful, to which he does not assent; he honors the ministers of religion, and it contents him to decline its mysteries without assailing or denouncing them. He is a friend of religious toleration, and that, not only because his philosophy has taught him to look on all forms of faith with an impartial eye, but also from the gentleness and effeminacy of feeling, which is the attendant on civilization.



  Father of all! in every age,
   In every clime adored,
  By saint, by savage, and by sage,
   Jehovah, Jove, or Lord!

  Thou Great First Cause, least understood:
   Who all my sense confined
  To know but this, that Thou art good,
   And that myself am blind;

  Yet gave me, in this dark estate,
  And binding nature fast in fate,
    Left free the human will.

  What conscience dictates to be done,
    Or warns me not to do,
  This, teach me more than hell to shun,
    That, more than heaven pursue.

  What blessings Thy free bounty gives,
    Let me not cast away;
  For God is paid when man receives:
    T' enjoy is to obey.

  Yet not to earth's contracted span
    Thy goodness let me bound,
  Or think Thee Lord alone of man,
    When thousand worlds are round.

  If I am right, Thy grace impart,
    Still in the right to stay;
  If I am wrong, oh! teach my heart
    To find that better way.

  Save me alike from foolish pride,
    Or impious discontent,
  At aught Thy wisdom has denied,
    Or aught Thy goodness lent.

  Teach me to feel another's woe,
    To hide the fault I see;
  That mercy I to others show,
    That mercy show to me.

  Mean though I am, not wholly so,
    Since quickened by Thy breath;
  Oh, lead me wheresoe'er I go,
    Through this day's life or death.

  This day, be bread and peace my lot:
    All else beneath the sun,
  Thou know'st if best bestowed or not,
    And let Thy will be done.

  To Thee, whose temple is all space,
    Whose altar earth, sea, skies,
  One chorus let all being raise,
    All nature's incense rise!



  You know we French stormed Ratisbon:
    A mile or so away,
  On a little mound, Napoleon
    Stood on our storming day;
  With neck out-thrust, you fancy how,
    Legs wide, arms locked behind,
  As if to balance the prone brow
    Oppressive with its mind.

  Just as perhaps he mused, "My plans
    That soar, to earth may fall,
  Let once my army-leader Lannes
    Waver at yonder wall,—"
  Out 'twixt the battery-smokes there flew
    A rider, bound on bound
  Full-galloping: nor bridle drew
   Until he reached the mound.

[Illustration: WE'VE GOT YOU RATISBON!]

  Then off there flung in smiling joy,
    And held himself erect
  By just his horse's mane, a boy:
    You hardly could suspect—-
  (So tight he kept his lips compressed,
    Scarce any blood came through)

  You looked twice ere you saw his breast
    Was all but shot in two.

  "Well," cried he, "Emperor, by God's grace
    We've got you Ratisbon!
  The Marshal's in the market place,
    And you'll be there anon,
  To see your flag-bird flap its vans
    Where I, to heart's desire,
  Perched him!" The chief's eye flashed; his plans
    Soared up again like fire.

  The chief's eye flashed; but presently
    Softened itself, as sheathes
  A film the mother eagle's eye
    When her bruised eaglet breathes.
  "You're wounded!" "Nay," the soldier's pride
    Touched to the quick, he said:
  "I'm killed, Sire!" And his chief beside,
    Smiling, the boy fell dead.


This little poem is very different from the poems of Longfellow, which we read a few pages back. It is very nervous and tense, and as you read it, it seems jerky in movement, not smooth as the waters of the Charles. Then again, sometimes words are omitted that make it a little difficult to understand at first reading. Moreover, Browning uses words in curious ways that Longfellow would not have thought about.

There are many interesting things to learn about this incident, however, and after we have learned them, we appreciate the poem very much better. First we need to know the following facts:

Ratisbon, or Regensburg, is a city in Bavaria, on the Danube River.

Napoleon Bonaparte, the great Emperor of the French, was much the man the poem shows us.

Prone brow means that Napoleon's brow was inclined forward, that his head was drooping.

Lannes was a famous French marshal, who showed remarkable powers of leadership. Both his legs were shot away at the Battle of Aspern, and he died a few days later at Vienna.

Out-thrust full-galloping, flag-bird, are compound words which Browning has formed for his own use.

Fancy in the fifth line means can imagine.

Vans in the fourth stanza is an old word no longer in use. It means wings.

The eagle has what is really a third eyelid, a thin translucent membrane, which naturalists call the nictitating, or winking, membrane. It may be drawn over the eye independently of the other lids. You may have seen ducks, chickens or other birds drawing this milky film back and forth over their eyes as they looked at you.

Nor bridle drew, and his chief beside, are phrases in which Browning has used the words out of their natural order. Can you find other similar expressions?


1. Incidents:

(a) Napoleon watches the storming of Ratisbon.

(b) He thinks it may be a failure.

(c) He sees a rider galloping from out the smoke of battle.

(d) The rider reaches Napoleon, leaps from his horse and clings to its mane.

(e) The rider announces the fall of Ratisbon.

(f) Napoleon rejoices.

(g) He speaks to the boy of his wound.

(h) The boy answers and falls dead.

2. The whole story might be summed up as follows: A wounded youth brings to Napoleon news of the fall of Ratisbon, and expires at the emperor's feet.


There are just two persons in this little tragedy, a boy and an emperor. Let us see what they were like; the boy is of greater interest than the emperor.

1. The Boy:

(a) From the way he rode his horse, we know he must have been strong and athletic.

(b) He was gay and joyful, for he smiled as he dismounted from his horse, and he smiled as he fell dead.

(c) That he was strong-willed, we know; for his tightly compressed lips held back the blood, and he concealed his suffering.

(d) He was courageous: he put the flag in the market place, as we are told in the fourth stanza.

(e) He was ambitious, we know; for it satisfied his heart's desire to win Ratisbon.

(f) He was proud, else he would not have noticed that the emperor called him wounded. Had it been a mere wound, he would never have fallen.

2. At different places in the poem, we find that Napoleon was ambitious, yet anxious over the outcome of the battle; that he was thoughtful and resourceful; that while he rejoiced in his victory, he sympathized with the wounded boy.


The poem is like a little drama or play in one scene. Place Napoleon in his uniform on a little mound, and see him standing there with his head thrust forward, looking at the storming of a city a mile or so away. Things are indistinct in the background because the smoke of the battle obscures the walls and towers of the city. However, Napoleon is not so far away but that he hears the roar, and sees the denser clouds rise at each new discharge of battery guns. From between the clouds comes the single horse with its youthful rider galloping at full speed, without an instant's pause, until the mound is reached. We see the young man leap from his horse and grasp its mane to keep himself from falling, but though his lips are compressed, we see his eyes smiling brightly as he tells the emperor the great news.



One of the most daring of those who engaged in the sea-fights of the American Revolution was Daniel Hawthorne, commander of a privateer, a man whose courage and enterprise won for him the title of "Bold Daniel." He came of one of the earliest American families, one that had been established in Salem, Massachusetts, in 1637, and had contributed not a little to the fame of that seaport, for his ancestors had been leaders among those whose stern and narrow views of justice had led them to persecute the Quakers and later to put to death innocent people during the awful period of the Salem witchcraft. Yet the same hardihood and fearless uprightness that had won esteem for Daniel Hawthorne had distinguished the family from the very first, and was passed on to the brave commander's descendants. His son Nathaniel, like the long line of notable men who had gone before him, possessed a strict sense of right and wrong, much courage and an especial fondness for the adventurous life on the sea. Though he contributed nothing to the celebrity of his forefathers, his son and namesake, the novelist Nathaniel Hawthorne, born in Salem, on July 4, 1804, gained for the old New England family a glory that will last.

It was in the home built by his father's father that Nathaniel was born and that he spent the first four years of his life. Yet he was never privileged to hear from the old captain's lips of the exciting sea- skirmishes in which the "Fair America," under the command of "Bold Daniel," had encountered and held her own against British vessels, for his grandfather had died many years before. Nor did the young boy ever know the pleasure of companionship with his father, who died in South America in 1808. In a great measure, too, he was deprived of association with his mother from the time when, following her husband's death, she removed with her children to her father's home, in another part of Salem. So deeply did she feel her loss that she shut herself away from the world during the remainder of her lifetime, and kept such strict privacy that she did not even take her meals with her family. The children were naturally quiet and reserved, and with the example of their mother's seclusion always before them, they took little part in the life outside of their home. Nathaniel did not like school, and, being under the care of relatives who allowed him much freedom, he missed a considerable part of the early school training that most boys receive. Yet his time was not wasted, for there were good books in his home, and these he read of his own free will.

When he was about eight or nine years of age, his mother took her children to live for a time upon property owned by her family on the shore of Lake Sebago, in Maine. Then began a period of great delight for the young boy and his sisters. As the land was mostly covered with woods and the settlements were far apart, there were endless opportunities for fishing and hunting and roaming about the woods or spending long, uninterrupted hours with favorite authors. In the winter Nathaniel passed much time in skating on Lake Sebago, feeling wholly free and at home in the midst of the wild life of nature.

So far as the boy's wishes were concerned, these days in Maine might have continued indefinitely; but his mother, feeling that he needed the discipline of regular study, sent him back to Salem to be prepared by a private teacher for entrance into Bowdoin College. The result of this training was that when he was about eighteen he became a member of the class at Bowdoin to which Longfellow and Horatio Bridge belonged, and thus began a career at college in which he proved himself a somewhat wayward student. The grind and drudgery of courses uninteresting to him he shunned, yet he would not let himself fail in any work that he undertook. Subjects that he liked he mastered readily.

Though he found no pleasure in breaking college rules, yet he made no pretensions to being a model student. He played cards in his room when he might have been studying, and would go off on a fishing trip when the fancy took him, without much regard for unfinished lessons. He looked forward with undisguised pleasure to his vacations spent at home, and on one occasion was so overcome by his desire to bring his studies to an end and leave Brunswick that, a short time before the close of the term, he wrote to his sister Louisa demanding that she invent an excuse for his return home. After stating five reasons for thus quitting Bowdoin, he continued:

"If you are at a loss for an excuse, say that mother is out of health; or that Uncle R. is going a journey on account of his health, and wishes me to attend him; or that Elizabeth is on a visit at some distant place, and wishes me to come and bring her home; or that George Archer has just arrived from sea, and is to sail again immediately, and wishes to see me before he goes; or that some of my relations are to die or be married, and my presence is necessary on the occasion. And lastly, if none of these excuses will suit you, and you can think of no other, write and order me to come home without any. If you do not, I shall certainly forge a letter, for I will be at home within a week. Write the very day you receive this. If Elizabeth were at home, she would be at no loss for a good excuse. If you will do what I tell you, I shall be Your affectionate brother, NATH. HAWTHORNE.

"My want of decent clothes will prevent my calling at Mrs. Sutton's.
Write immediately, write immediately, write immediately.

"Haste, haste, post-haste, ride and run, until these shall be delivered. You must and shall and will do as I desire. If you can think of a true excuse, send it; if not, any other will answer the same purpose. If I do not get a letter by Monday, or Tuesday at farthest, I will leave Brunswick without liberty."

It is an interesting fact that this impetuous young student was regarded as the finest-looking man at Bowdoin. He was not much less than six feet tall, and was strong, supple and well proportioned. His dark hair waved back from a handsomely formed face; and his deep blue eyes, under their heavy brows, impressed one with their remarkable brightness and expressiveness.

Though it may seem surprising, it is true that Nathaniel Hawthorne was not at all conscious in his early youth of the great possibilities that lay in him to become a writer, and that not until he had advanced in his college course did he form the purpose of making literature a profession. As early as sixteen years of age he had written verses that had been published; yet he was far from believing that he had poetic power. That he did not at this time take very seriously his ability as a writer, may be judged from this passage in a letter to his mother written in March, 1821:

"I am quite reconciled to going to college, since I am to spend the vacations with you. Yet four years of the best part of my life is a great deal to throw away. I have not yet concluded what profession I shall have.

"The being a minister is of course out of the question. I should not think that even you could desire me to choose so dull a way of life. Oh, no, mother, I was not born to vegetate forever in one place, and to live and die as calm and tranquil as—a puddle of water.

"As to lawyers, there are so many of them already that one half of them (upon a moderate calculation) are in a state of actual starvation.

"A physician, then, seems to be 'Hobson's choice;' but yet I should not like to live by the diseases and infirmities of my fellow-creatures. And it would weigh very heavily on my conscience, in the course of my practice, if I should chance to send any unlucky patient 'ad inferum,' which being interpreted is, 'to the realms below.' Oh that I was rich enough to live without a profession!

"What do you think of my becoming an author, and relying for support upon my pen? Indeed, I think the illegibility of my handwriting is very author-like. How proud you would feel to see my works praised by the reviewers, as equal to the proudest productions of the scribbling sons of John Bull. But authors are always poor devils, and therefore Satan may take them. I am in the same predicament as the honest gentleman in 'Espriella's Letters,'—

  'I am an Englishman, and naked I stand here,
   A-musing in my mind what garment I shall wear.'"

However, by the time of his graduation from Bowdoin College he had laid aside his jesting and doubt, and in the following period of remarkable seclusion spent in his mother's home in Salem he gave himself to the work of composition. Thirteen years he passed thus in a sort of ideal world, so shut away from his neighbors that they scarcely knew of his existence.

Hawthorne always felt that these years of seclusion were peculiarly significant in his life, in that they enabled him to keep, as he said, "the dews of his youth and the freshness of his heart." Still, he realized that he had been much deceived in fancying that there, in his solitary chamber, he could imagine all passions, all feelings and states of the heart and mind.

Of all that was written in these years the author gave out for publication only the romance Fanshawe, which he regarded later as a very inferior production, and the various stories published at length in the collection known as Twice Told Tales. Fame came very slowly. Though the worth of these writings was discovered by people of good literary judgment, it was not of the kind to make them widely popular. Sometimes the young author was so overcome by discouragement that it would seem as if only the confidence in his final success felt by his friends could save him from despair.

Relief from this situation came in a most wholesome way. In 1839 George Bancroft secured for Hawthorne a position as weigher and gauger in the Boston Customhouse, and thus his lonely life of brooding came to an end. In discharging his duties he came into much-needed everyday contact with practical men and affairs. This office he held for two years until the Whigs won the presidential election and the Democrats went out of power. Meanwhile he had written Grandfather's Chair, a collection of children's stories concerning early New England history.

Somewhat previous to the appointment to the office in the Customhouse had taken place an event which was even more full of important meaning. While he was living in Salem he had become acquainted with the Peabody family and in their home had met the young woman who later became his wife, and who brought into his life the powerful influence for good that more than anything else developed the fine qualities of his nature and drew forth his powers as a writer. He had preferred to live hidden away from every one if he must give up the beauty and purity of the thought-world for the harshness and ugliness of the actual world without. But in his association with Sophia Peabody his faith in the reality that lay back of his beautiful visions was so strengthened that he felt a deep peace and joy never known to him before. The loveliness of her character is shown in her letters, and it is not surprising that Hawthorne should on one occasion write, in response to a letter from her, "I never, till now, had a friend who could give me repose; all have disturbed me, and, whether for pleasure or pain, it was still disturbance. But peace overflows from your heart into mine. Then I feel that there is a Now, and that Now must be always calm and happy, and that sorrow and evil are but phantoms that seem to flit across it."

In the summer of 1842 Hawthorne and Miss Peabody were married and went to live in the "Old Manse," in Concord. In the preceding year he had unfortunately invested money in a settlement known as the Brook Farm, where people of different classes of society were to live together on an equality, all sharing alike the duties of the farm life, and all contributing to the expenses of the common living. The experiment proved a failure and Hawthorne withdrew disgusted. With this hope of providing for himself and his wife destroyed, he found it necessary to work industriously, and as a result a new series of stories for children, the Mosses from an Old Manse, appeared in 1846.

In the same year he was made surveyor of the collection of revenue at the Salem Customhouse. Then for a time he ceased to write, until his discovery among some rubbish in the customhouse of an old manuscript that gave him excellent material for a greater work of fiction than he had ever before attempted, called him back to literary effort. The actual composition of the book was not begun, however, until the day on which Hawthorne lost his position as surveyor.

When he made known this unfortunate event to his wife, instead of becoming depressed, she exclaimed joyfully, "Oh, then, you can write your book!" and a little later, pulling open a drawer, showed him a considerable sum of money that she had been saving all unknown to him. Thus it became possible for him to devote himself to the work that proved to be his masterpiece, The Scarlet Letter, published in 1850. The unusual excellence of the romance brought to the writer far-spread praise and popularity, and he became at length recognized as a foremost American man of letters.

The Hawthornes now went to live at Lenox, in the mountains of western Massachusetts. In their delightful home in this place the novelist produced a second great romance, The House of the Seven Gables, and then gave up four months to rest. This vacation was largely a playtime spent with his two older children, Una and Julian, the younger daughter Rose being then only a baby. He had worked so hard that he was ready for plenty of fun, and this he and his two young playfellows found in excursions for wild flowers or nuts, in bathing in the lake or sending over its surface home-made toy sail-boats, in romping through the woods or reading or story-telling. After this happy period it is not surprising that Hawthorne should have written easily and with enjoyment the Wonder Book for children, a simple and entertaining series of stories in which old legends are put into attractive new forms.


After the removal from Lenox in 1851, the family stayed for a short time in West Newton, where The Blithedale Romance was written, and then settled at the Wayside, the second of the famous homes of Hawthorne in Concord. Not long afterward were published the Tanglewood Tales, which continue the Wonder Book series; and a biography of his intimate friend, Franklin Pierce. When in 1853 Pierce became president of the United States, he appointed Hawthorne to be the consul at Liverpool, England, and thus came to an end the quiet life at Concord.

The publicity into which Hawthorne's duties as consul brought him was very disagreeable to one of his retiring disposition. He could feel at ease only among those whose gentle and sensitive natures responded to his own; hence attendance at formal dinners, speech making and other social obligations that forced him often into the company of more or less uncongenial people, seemed scarcely bearable to him. It was with relief then, that he resigned the consulate in 1857 and went to live in southern Europe. The greater part of his time until his return to America in 1860 was passed in Italy, and near Florence was written the last of his celebrated romances, The Marble Faun.

During the four remaining years of his life, spent at the Wayside, in Concord, Hawthorne's strength gradually ebbed away. Nevertheless, he was able to produce Our Old Home, in which he described scenes from English life, as well as Septimus Felton and parts of two other romances. In 1864, while traveling for his health through southern New Hampshire with his friend Franklin Pierce, Hawthorne died in the quiet, sudden way in which he had hoped that he should pass from earth. He was buried in Sleepy Hollow Cemetery, where a simple headstone marks his grave.

As the cheerfulness and simple beauty of Hawthorne's stories for children are as light among the gloom and sadness that overshadowed his works for older people, so his love for children and his delight in their companionship illumine his character and bring into view his rare gentleness and purity of nature. In recalling the days when she was a little girl, his daughter Rose has told us:

"My father's enjoyment of frolicking fun was as hilarious as that accorded by some of us to wildest comic opera. He had a delicate way of throwing himself into the scrimmage of laughter, and I do not for an instant attempt to explain how he managed it. I can say that he lowered his eyelids when he laughed hardest, and drew in his breath half a dozen times with dulcet sounds and a murmur of mirth between. Before and after this performance he would look at you straight from under his black brows, and his eyes seemed dazzling. I think the hilarity was revealed in them, although his cheeks rounded in ecstasy. I was a little roguish child, but he was the youngest and merriest person in the room when he was amused."

Though the suffering and wrong that he saw in the world deeply perplexed and saddened him, yet he found so much of happier meaning in life and expressed this with such marvelous power and grace that no one to-day holds a worthier place in American literature. That no successor can take this place nor imitate the subtle beauty of his style, we feel to be true as we read the lines written by the poet Longfellow, just after the death of Hawthorne:

  "Now I look back, and meadow, manse and stream
    Dimly my thought defines;
  I only see—a dream within a dream—
    The hill-top hearsed with pines.

  "I only hear above his place of rest
    Their tender undertone,
  The infinite longings of a troubled breast,
    The voice so like his own.

  "There in seclusion and remote from men
    The wizard hand lies cold,
  Which at its topmost speed let fall the pen,
    And left the tale half told.

  "Ah! who shall lift that wand of magic power,
    And the lost dew regain?
  The unfinished window in Aladdin's tower
    Unfinished must remain!"

[Footnote: From Grandfather's Chair.]


Captain John Hull was the mint-master of Massachusetts, and coined all the money that was made there. This was a new line of business, for in the earlier days of the colony the current coinage consisted of gold and silver money of England, Portugal, and Spain. These coins being scarce, the people were often forced to barter their commodities instead of selling them.

For instance, if a man wanted to buy a coat, he perhaps exchanged a bear-skin for it. If he wished for a barrel of molasses, he might purchase it with a pile of pine boards. Musket-bullets were used instead of farthings. The Indians had a sort of money called wampum, which was made of clam-shells, and this strange sort of specie was likewise taken in payment of debts by the English settlers. Bank-bills had never been heard of. There was not money enough of any kind, in many parts of the country, to pay the salaries of the ministers, so that they sometimes had to take quintals of fish, bushels of corn, or cords of wood instead of silver or gold.

As the people grew more numerous and their trade one with another increased, the want of current money was still more sensibly felt. To supply the demand the general court passed a law for establishing a coinage of shillings, sixpences, and threepences. Captain John Hull was appointed to manufacture this money, and was to have about one shilling out of every twenty to pay him for the trouble of making them.

Hereupon all the old silver in the colony was handed over to Captain John Hull. The battered silver cans and tankards, I suppose, and silver buckles, and broken spoons, and silver buttons of worn-out coats, and silver hilts of swords that had figured at court,—all such curious old articles were doubtless thrown into the melting pot together. But by far the greater part of the silver consisted of bullion from the mines of South America, which the English buccaneers—who were little better than pirates—had taken from the Spaniards and brought to Massachusetts.

All this old and new silver being melted down and coined, the result was an immense amount of splendid shillings, sixpences, and threepences. Each had the date 1652 on the one side and the figure of a pine tree on the other. Hence they were called pine-tree shillings. And for every twenty shillings that he coined, you will remember, Captain John Hull was entitled to put one shilling into his own pocket.

The magistrates soon began to suspect that the mint-master would have the best of the bargain. They offered him a large sum of money if he would but give up that twentieth shilling which he was continually dropping into his own pocket. But Captain Hull declared himself perfectly satisfied with the shilling. And well he might be, for so diligently did he labor that in a few years his pockets, his money- bags, and his strong box were overflowing with pine-tree shillings.

When the mint-master had grown very rich a young man, Samuel Sewell by name, came a-courting to his only daughter. His daughter—whose name I do not know, but we will call her Betsey—was a fine, hearty damsel, by no means so slender as some young ladies of our own days. On the contrary, having always fed heartily on pumpkin pies, doughnuts, Indian puddings, and other Puritan dainties, she was as round and plump as a pudding herself. With this round, rosy Miss Betsey did Samuel Sewell fall in love. As he was a young man of good character, industrious in his business, and a member of the church, the mint-master very readily gave his consent.

"Yes, you may take her," said he, in his rough way, "and you'll find her a heavy burden enough."

On the wedding-day we may suppose that honest John Hull dressed himself in a plum-colored coat, all the buttons of which were made of pine-tree shillings. The buttons of his waist-coat were sixpences, and the knees of his small clothes were buttoned with silver threepences. Thus attired, he sat with great dignity in Grandfather's chair, and, being a portly old gentleman, he completely filled it from elbow to elbow. On the opposite side of the room, between her bridemaids, sat Miss Betsey. She was blushing with all her might, and looked like a full-blown peony or a great red apple.

There, too, was the bridegroom, dressed in a fine purple coat and gold- lace waistcoat, with as much finery as the Puritan laws and customs would allow him to put on. His hair was cropped close to his head, because Governor Endicott had forbidden any man to wear it below the ears. But he was a very personable young man, and so thought the bride- maids and Miss Betsey herself.

The mint-master also was pleased with his new son-in-law, especially as he had courted Miss Betsey out of pure love, and had said nothing at all about her portion. So, when the marriage ceremony was over, Captain Hull whispered a word to two of his men-servants, who immediately went out, and soon returned lugging in a large pair of scales. They were such a pair as wholesale merchants use for weighing bulky commodities, and quite a bulky commodity was now to be weighed in them.

"Daughter Betsey," said the mint-master, "get into one side of these scales."

Miss Betsey—or Mrs. Sewell, as we must now call her—did as she was bid, like a dutiful child, without any question of the why and wherefore. But what her father could mean, unless to make her husband pay for her by the pound (in which case she would have been a dear bargain), she had not the least idea.

"And now," said honest John Hull to the servants, "bring that box hither."

The box to which the mint-master pointed was a huge, square, iron-bound oaken chest; it was big enough, my children, for all four of you to play at hide-and-seek in. The servants tugged with might and main, but could not lift this enormous receptacle, and were finally obliged to drag it across the floor. Captain Hull then took a key from his girdle, unlocked the chest, and lifted its ponderous lid. Behold! it was full to the brim of bright pine-tree shillings fresh from the mint, and Samuel Sewell began to think that his father-in-law had got possession of all the money in the Massachusetts treasury. But it was only the mint-master's honest share of the coinage.


Then the servants, at Captain Hull's command, heaped double handfuls of shillings into one side of the scales while Betsey remained in the other. Jingle, jingle, went the shillings as handful after handful was thrown in, till, plump and ponderous as she was, they fairly weighed the young lady from the floor.

"There, son Sewell!" cried the honest mint-master, resuming his seat in
Grandfather's chair, "take these shillings for my daughter's portion.
Use her kindly and thank Heaven for her. It is not every wife that's
worth her weight in silver."



  The breaking waves dash'd high
    On a stern and rock-bound coast,
  And the woods against a stormy sky
    Their giant branches toss'd;

  And the heavy night hung dark
    The hills and waters o'er,
  When a band of exiles moor'd their bark
    On the wild New England shore.

  Not as the conqueror comes,
    They, the true-hearted, came;
  Not with the roll of the stirring drums,
    And the trumpet that sings of fame;

  Not as the flying come,
    In silence and in fear;—
  They shook the depths of the desert gloom
   With their hymns of lofty cheer.

  Amidst the storm they sang,
   And the stars heard and the sea;
  And the sounding aisles of the dim woods rang
   To the anthem of the free!

  The ocean eagle soar'd
   From his nest by the white wave's foam;
  And the rocking pines of the forest roar'd—
   This was their welcome home!

  There were men with hoary hair
   Amidst that pilgrim band;—
  Why had they come to wither there,
   Away from their childhood's land?

  There was woman's fearless eye,
   Lit by her deep love's truth;
  There was manhood's brow serenely high,
   And the fiery heart of youth.

  What sought they thus afar?—
   Bright jewels of the mine?
  The wealth of seas, the spoils of war?
   They sought a faith's pure shrine!

  Ay, call it holy ground,
   The soil where first they trod.
  They have left unstain'd what there they found—
   Freedom to worship God.

[Footnote: From Grandfather's Chair.]


Picture to yourselves, my dear children, a handsome old-fashioned room, with a large open cupboard at one end, in which is displayed a magnificent gold cup with some other splendid articles of gold and silver plate. In another part of the room, opposite to a tall looking- glass, stands our beloved chair, newly polished and adorned with a gorgeous cushion of crimson velvet tufted with gold.

In the chair sits a man of strong and sturdy frame, whose face has been roughened by northern tempests and blackened by the burning sun of the West Indies. He wears an immense periwig flowing down over his shoulders. His coat has a wide embroidery of golden foliage, and his waistcoat likewise is all flowered over and bedizened with gold. His red, rough hands, which have done many a good day's work with the hammer and adze, are half covered by the delicate lace ruffles at his wrists. On a table lies his silver-hilted sword, and in a corner of the room stands his gold-headed cane, made of a beautifully polished West India wood.

Somewhat such an aspect as this did Sir William Phipps present when he sat in Grandfather's chair after the king had appointed him governor of Massachusetts. Truly, there was need that the old chair should be varnished and decorated with a crimson cushion in order to make it suitable for such a magnificent-looking personage.

But Sir William Phipps had not always worn a gold-embroidered coat, nor always sat so much at his ease as he did in Grandfather's chair. He was a poor man's son, and was born in the province of Maine, where he used to tend sheep upon the hills in his boyhood and youth. Until he had grown to be a man he did not even know how to read and write. Tired of tending sheep, he next apprenticed himself to a ship-carpenter, and spent about four years in hewing the crooked limbs of oak trees into knees for vessels.

In 1673, when he was twenty-two years old, he came to Boston, and soon afterward was married to a widow who had property enough to set him up in business. It was not long, however, before he lost all the money that he had acquired by his marriage and became a poor man again. Still he was not discouraged. He often told his wife that some time or other he should be very rich and would build a "fair brick house" in the Green Lane of Boston.

Do not suppose, children, that he had been to a fortune-teller to inquire his destiny. It was his own energy and spirit of enterprise and his resolution to lead an industrious life that made him look forward with so much confidence to better days.

Several years passed away, and William Phipps had not yet gained the riches which he promised to himself. During this time he had begun to follow the sea for a living. In the year 1684 he happened to hear of a Spanish ship which had been cast away near the Bahama Islands, and which was supposed to contain a great deal of gold and silver. Phipps went to the place in a small vessel, hoping that he should be able to recover some of the treasure from the wreck. He did not succeed, however, in fishing up gold and silver enough to pay the expenses of his voyage.

But before he returned he was told of another Spanish ship or galleon which had been cast away near Porto de la Plata. She had now lain as much as fifty years beneath the waves. This old ship had been laden with immense wealth, and hitherto nobody had thought of the possibility of recovering any part of it from the deep sea which was rolling, and tossing it about. But, though it was now an old story, and the most aged people had almost forgotten that such a vessel had been wrecked, William Phipps resolved that the sunken treasure should again be brought to light.

He went to London and obtained admittance to King James, who had not yet been driven from his throne. He told the king of the vast wealth that was lying at the bottom of the sea. King James listened with attention, and thought this a fine opportunity to fill his treasury with Spanish gold. He appointed William Phipps to be captain of a vessel called the Rose Algier, carrying eighteen guns and ninety-five men. So now he was Captain Phipps of the English navy.

Captain Phipps sailed from England in the Rose Algier, and cruised for nearly two years in the West Indies, endeavoring to find the wreck of the Spanish ship. But the sea is so wide and deep that it is no easy matter to discover the exact spot where a sunken vessel lies. The prospect of success seemed very small, and most people would have thought that Captain Phipps was as far from having money enough to build a "fair brick house" as he was while he tended sheep.

The seamen of the Rose Algier became discouraged and gave up all hope of making their fortunes by discovering the Spanish wreck. They wanted to compel Captain Phipps to turn pirate. There was a much better prospect, they thought, of growing rich by plundering vessels which still sailed in the sea than by seeking for a ship that had lain beneath the waves full half a century. They broke out in open mutiny, but were finally mastered by Phipps and compelled to obey his orders. It would have been dangerous, however, to continue much longer at sea with such a crew of mutinous sailors, and, besides, the Rose Algier was leaky and unseaworthy. So Captain Phipps judged it best to return to England.

Before leaving the West Indies he met with a Spaniard, an old man, who remembered the wreck of the Spanish ship and gave him directions how to find the very spot. It was on a reef of rocks a few leagues from Porto de la Plata.

On his arrival in England, therefore, Captain Phipps solicited the king to let him have another vessel and send him back again to the West Indies. But King James, who had probably expected that the Rose Algier would return laden with gold, refused to have anything more to do with the affair. Phipps might never have been able to renew the search if the Duke of Albemarle and some other noblemen had not lent their assistance. They fitted out a ship and gave the command to Captain Phipps. He sailed from England and arrived safely at Porto de la Plata, where he took an adze and assisted his men to build a large boat.

The boat was intended for the purpose of going closer to the reef of rocks than a large vessel could safely venture. When it was finished the captain sent several men in it to examine the spot where the Spanish ship was said to have been wrecked. They were accompanied by some Indians who were skilful divers and could go down a great way into the depths of the sea.

The boat's crew proceeded to the reef of rocks and rowed round and round it a great many times. They gazed down into the water, which was so transparent that it seemed as if they could have seen the gold and silver at the bottom had there been any of those precious metals there. Nothing, however, could they see—nothing more valuable than a curious sea-shrub which was growing beneath the water in a crevice of the reef of rocks. It flaunted to and fro with the swell and reflux of the waves, and looked as bright and beautiful as if its leaves were gold.

"We won't go back empty-handed," cried an English sailor, and then he spoke to one of the Indian divers: "Dive down and bring me that pretty sea-shrub there. That's the only treasure we shall find."

Down plunged the diver, and soon rose dripping from the water, holding the sea-shrub in his hand. But he had learned some news at the bottom of the sea.

"There are some ship's guns," said he the moment he had drawn breath, "some great cannon, among the rocks near where the shrub was growing."


No sooner had he spoken than the English sailors knew that they had found the very spot where the Spanish galleon had been wrecked so many years before. The other Indian divers immediately plunged over the boat's side and swam headlong down, groping among the rocks and sunken cannon. In a few moments one of them rose above the water with a heavy lump of silver in his arms. The single lump was worth more than a thousand dollars. The sailors took it into the boat, and then rowed back as speedily as they could, being in haste to inform Captain Phipps of their good luck.

But, confidently as the captain had hoped to find the Spanish wreck, yet, now that it was really found, the news seemed too good to be true. He could not believe it till the sailors showed him the lump of silver.

"Thanks be to God!" then cried Captain Phipps. "We shall every man of us make our fortunes!"

Hereupon the captain and all the crew set to work with iron rakes and great hooks and lines fishing for gold and silver at the bottom of the sea. Up came the treasure in abundance. Now they beheld a table of solid silver, once the property of an old Spanish grandee. Now they found a sacramental vessel which had been destined as a gift to some Catholic church. Now they drew up a golden cup fit for the King of Spain to drink his wine out of. Perhaps the bony hand of its former owner had been grasping the precious cup and was drawn up along with it. Now their rakes or fishing lines were loaded with masses of silver bullion. There were also precious stones among the treasure, glittering and sparkling so that it is a wonder how their radiance could have been concealed.

There is something sad and terrible in the idea of snatching all this wealth from the devouring ocean, which had possessed it for such a length of years. It seems as if men had no right to make themselves rich with it. It ought to have been left with the skeletons of the ancient Spaniards who had been drowned when the ship was wrecked, and whose bones were now scattered among the gold and silver.

But Captain Phipps and his crew were troubled with no such thoughts as these. After a day or two they lighted on another part of the wreck, where they found a great many bags of silver dollars. But nobody could have guessed that these were moneybags. By remaining so long in the salt water they had become covered over with a crust which had the appearance of stone, so that it was necessary to break them in pieces with hammers and axes. When this was done a stream of silver dollars gushed out upon the deck of the vessel.

The whole value of the recovered treasure—plate, bullion, precious stones, and all—was estimated at more than two millions of dollars. It was dangerous even to look at such a vast amount of wealth. A sea- captain who had assisted Phipps in the enterprise utterly lost his reason at the sight of it. He died two years afterward, still raving about the treasures that lie at the bottom of the sea. It would have been better for this man if he had left the skeletons of the shipwrecked Spaniards in quiet possession of their wealth.

Captain Phipps and his men continued to fish up plate, bullion, and dollars as plentifully as ever till their provisions grew short. Then, as they could not feed upon gold and silver any more than old King Midas could, they found it necessary to go in search of better sustenance. Phipps resolved to return to England. He arrived there in 1687. and was received with great joy by the Duke of Albemarle and other English lords who had fitted out the vessel. Well they might rejoice, for they took by far the greater part of the treasure to themselves.

The captain's share, however, was enough to make him comfortable for the rest of his days. It also enabled him to fulfil his promise to his wife by building a "fair brick house" in the Green Lane of Boston. The Duke of Albemarle sent Mrs. Phipps a magnificent gold cup worth at least five thousand dollars. Before Captain Phipps left London, King James made him a knight, so that, instead of the obscure ship-carpenter who had formerly dwelt among them, the inhabitants of Boston welcomed him on his return as the rich and famous Sir William Phipps.

He was too active and adventurous a man to sit still in the quiet enjoyment of his good fortune. In 1690 he went on a military expedition against the French colonies in America, conquered the whole Province of Acadia, and returned to Boston with a great deal of plunder. In the same year Sir William took command of an expedition against Quebec, but did not succeed in capturing the city. In 1692, King William III appointed him governor of Massachusetts.

THE HUTCHINSON MOB [Footnote: From Grandfather's Chair.]


On the evening of the 26th of August, 1765, a bonfire was kindled in King Street. It flamed high upward, and threw a ruddy light over the front of the Town-house, on which was displayed a carved representation of the royal arms. The gilded vane of the cupola glittered in the blaze. The kindling of this bonfire was the well-known signal for the populace of Boston to assemble in the street.

Before the tar barrels of which the bonfire was made were half burned out a great crowd had come together. They were chiefly laborers and seafaring men, together with many young apprentices and all those idle people about town who are ready for any kind of mischief. Doubtless some schoolboys were among them.

While these rough figures stood round the blazing bonfire you might hear them speaking bitter words against the high officers of the province. Governor Bernard, [Footnote: It was Governor Francis Bernard who did much to hasten on the Revolutionary War. He was very harsh in his treatment of the colonists, and it was on his representation of their secret traitorous designs that the British ordered troops stationed in Boston. This aroused a violent opposition, which was not quelled before war finally broke out.] Hutchinson, [Footnote: This Thomas Hutchinson was the last royal governor of the Province of Massachusetts Bay. He was born in Boston, and was a descendant of the famous Anne Hutchinson. At the time of the incident described in this selection, he was lieutenant-governor of the province, and as chief justice, had issued the so-called Writs of Assistance, which brought upon him the anger of the colonists. Under these Writs it was possible for a constable, or other public officer, to enter any building and take therefrom goods upon which the duty had not been paid. In the hands of tyrannical officers, these Writs would entirely destroy the privacy of any family. When the Stamp Act was passed, Hutchinson accepted it as legal, though he had opposed it on principle. By this action he brought upon himself the intense animosity of the colonists.] Oliver, [Footnote: Andrew Oliver was, on the passage of the Stamp Act, appointed distributer for Massachusetts. This displeased the people, and less than two weeks before the mob attacked the Hutchinson house, Oliver was hanged in effigy, and a new building, supposed to be intended for his office, was burned to the ground. This did not allay the excitement of the colonists, who followed Oliver and threatened him so savagely that he finally promised not to receive the stamps. Later the mob, hearing that he still intended to serve, took him to the "Liberty Tree," and under threats of hanging, forced him to swear that he had never intended to distribute the stamps. When Hutchinson became governor in 1770, Oliver was given the lieutenant-governorship, in which position he wrote letters that brought him again into antagonism with the colonists, and the British government was asked to remove him from office.] Storey, Hallowell, and other men whom King George delighted to honor were reviled as traitors to the country. Now and then, perhaps, an officer of the Crown passed along the street, wearing the gold-laced hat, white wig, and embroidered waistcoat which were the fashion of the day.

But when the people beheld him they set up a wild and angry howl, and their faces had an evil aspect, which was made more terrible by the flickering blaze of the bonfire.

"I should like to throw the traitor right into that blaze!" perhaps one fierce rioter would say.

"Yes, and all his brethren, too!" another might reply; "and the governor and old Tommy Hutchinson into the hottest of it!"

"And the Earl of Bute [Footnote: The Earl of Bute was a British statesman who, as secretary of state, became most unpopular not only in the colonies, but in England itself. He was an ancient supporter of royal authority, and exacted the most unquestioning obedience from his inferiors.] along with them!" muttered a third, "and burn the whole pack of them under King George's nose! No matter if it singed him!"

Some such expressions as these, either shouted aloud or muttered under the breath, were doubtless heard in King Street. The mob, meanwhile, were growing fiercer and fiercer, and seemed ready even to set the town on fire for the sake of burning the king's friends out of house and home. And yet, angry as they were, they sometimes broke into a loud roar of laughter, as if mischief and destruction were their sport.

But we must now leave the rioters for a time, and take a peep into the lieutenant-governor's splendid mansion. It was a large brick house decorated with Ionic pilasters, and stood in Garden Court Street near the North Square.

While the angry mob in King Street were shouting his name, Lieutenant- Governor Hutchinson sat quietly in Grandfather's chair, unsuspicious of the evil that was about to fall upon his head. His beloved family were in the room with him. He had thrown off his embroidered coat and powdered wig, and had on a loose flowing gown and purple velvet cap. He had likewise laid aside the cares of state and all the thoughts that had wearied and perplexed him throughout the day.

Perhaps in the enjoyment of his home he had forgotten all about the Stamp Act, and scarcely remembered that there was a king across the ocean who had resolved to make tributaries of the New Englanders. Possibly, too, he had forgotten his own ambition, and would not have exchanged his situation at that moment to be governor or even a lord.

[Illustration: "FATHER, DO YOU NOT HEAR?"]

The wax candles were now lighted, and showed a handsome room well provided with rich furniture. On the walls hung the pictures of Hutchinson's ancestors, who had been eminent men in their day and were honorably remembered in the history of the country. Every object served to mark the residence of a rich, aristocratic gentleman who held himself high above the common people and could have nothing to fear from them. In the corner of a room, thrown carelessly upon a chair, were the scarlet robes of the chief justice. This high office, as well as those of lieutenant-governor, councilor, and judge of the probate, was filled by Hutchinson.

Who or what could disturb the domestic quiet of such a great and powerful personage as now sat in Grandfather's chair?

The lieutenant-governor's favorite daughter sat by his side. She leaned on the arm of our great chair and looked up affectionately into her father's face, rejoicing to perceive that a quiet smile was on his lips. But suddenly a shade came across her countenance. She seemed to listen attentively, as if to catch a distant sound.

"What is the matter, my child?" inquired Hutchinson.

"Father, do you not hear a tumult in the streets?" said she.

The lieutenant-governor listened. But his ears were duller than those of his daughter: he could hear nothing more terrible than the sound of a summer breeze sighing among the tops of the elm trees.

"No, foolish child!" he replied, playfully patting her cheek. "There is no tumult. Our Boston mobs are satisfied with what mischief they have already done. The king's friends need not tremble."

So Hutchinson resumed his pleasant and peaceful meditations, and again forgot that there were any troubles in the world. But his family were alarmed, and could not help straining their ears to catch the slightest sound. More and more distinctly they heard shouts, and then the trampling of many feet. While they were listening one of the neighbors rushed breathless into the room.

"A mob! a terrible mob!" cried he. "They have broken into Mr. Storey's house and into Mr. Hallowell's, and have made themselves drunk with the liquors in his cellar, and now they are coming hither, as wild as so many tigers. Flee, lieutenant-governor, for your life! for your life!"

"Father, dear father, make haste!" shrieked his children.

But Hutchinson would not hearken to them. He was an old lawyer, and he could not realize that the people would do anything so utterly lawless as to assault him in his peaceful home. He was one of King George's chief officers, and it would be an insult and outrage upon the king himself if the lieutenant-governor should suffer any wrong.

"Have no fears on my account," said he. "I am perfectly safe. The king's name shall be my protection."

Yet he bade his family retire into one of the neighboring houses. His daughter would have remained, but he forced her away.

The huzzas and riotous uproar of the mob were now heard close at hand. The sound was terrible, and struck Hutchinson with the same sort of dread as if an enraged wild beast had broken loose and were roaring for its prey. He crept softly to the window. There he beheld an immense concourse of people filling all the street and rolling onward to his house. It was like a tempestuous flood that had swelled beyond its bounds and would sweep everything before it. Hutchinson trembled; he felt at that moment that the wrath of the people was a thousandfold more terrible than the wrath of a king. That was a moment when a loyalist and an aristocrat like Hutchinson might have learned how powerless are kings, nobles, and great men when the low and humble range themselves against them. King George could do nothing for his servant now. Had King George been there he could have done nothing for himself. If Hutchinson had understood this lesson and remembered it, he need not in after years have been an exile from his native country, nor finally have laid his bones in a distant land.


There was now a rush against the doors of the house. The people sent up a hoarse cry. At this instant the lieutenant-governor's daughter, whom he had supposed to be in a place of safety, ran into the room and threw her arms around him. She had returned by a private entrance.

"Father, are you mad?" cried she. "Will the king's name protect you now? Come with me or they will have your life."

"True," muttered Hutchinson to himself; "what care these roarers for the name of king? I must flee, or they will trample me down on the floor of my own dwelling."

Hurrying away, he and his daughter made their escape by the private passage at the moment when the rioters broke into the house. The foremost of them rushed up the staircase and entered the room which Hutchinson had just quitted. There they beheld our good old chair facing them with quiet dignity, while the lion's head seemed to move its jaws in the unsteady light of their torches. Perhaps the stately aspect of our venerable friend, which had stood firm through a century and a half of trouble, arrested them for an instant. But they were thrust forward by those behind, and the chair lay overthrown.

Then began the work of destruction. The carved and polished mahogany tables were shattered with heavy clubs and hewn to splinters with axes. The marble hearths and mantelpieces were broken. The volumes of Hutchinson's library, so precious to a studious man, were torn out of their covers and the leaves sent flying out of the windows. Manuscripts containing secrets of our country's history which are now lost forever were scattered to the winds. The old ancestral portraits whose fixed countenances looked down on the wild scene were rent from the walls. The mob triumphed in their downfall and destruction, as if these pictures of Hutchinson's forefathers had committed the same offenses as their descendants. A tall looking-glass which had hitherto presented a reflection of the enraged and drunken multitude was now smashed into a thousand fragments. We gladly dismiss the scene from the mirror of our fancy.

Before morning dawned the walls of the house were all that remained. The interior was a dismal scene of ruin. A shower pattered in at the broken windows, and when Hutchinson and his family returned they stood shivering in the same room where the last evening had seen them so peaceful and happy.

[Illustration: North Church Tower, Boston]

[Footnote: From Grandfather's Chair.]


It was now the 3d of March, 1770. The sunset music of the British regiments was heard as usual throughout the town. The shrill fife and rattling drum awoke the echoes in King Street while the last ray of sunshine was lingering on the cupola of the Town-house. And now all the sentinels were posted. One of them marched up and down before the custom-house, treading a short path through the snow and longing for the time when they would be dismissed to the warm fireside of the guard-room. Meanwhile, Captain Preston was perhaps sitting in our great chair before the hearth of the British Coffee-house. In the course of the evening there were two or three slight commotions which seemed to indicate that trouble was at hand. Small parties of young men stood at the corners of the streets or walked along the narrow pavements. Squads of soldiers who were dismissed from duty passed by them, shoulder to shoulder, with the regular step which they had learned at the drill. Whenever these encounters took place it appeared to be the object of the young men to treat the soldiers with as much incivility as possible.

"Turn out, you lobster-backs!" one would say.

"Crowd them off the sidewalks!" another would cry. "A red-coat has no right in Boston streets!"

"Oh, you rebel rascals!" perhaps the soldiers would reply, glaring fiercely at the young men. "Some day or other we'll make our way through Boston streets at the point of the bayonet!"

One or twice such disputes as these brought on a scuffle, which passed off, however, without attracting much notice. About eight o'clock, for some unknown cause, an alarm bell rang loudly and hurriedly.

At the sound many people ran out of their houses, supposing it to be an alarm of fire. But there were no flames to be seen, nor was there any smell of smoke in the clear, frosty air, so that most of the townsmen went back to their own firesides and sat talking with their wives and children about the calamities of the times. Others who were younger and less prudent remained in the streets, for there seems to have been a presentiment that some strange event was on the eve of taking place.

Later in the evening, not far from nine o'clock several young men passed by the Town-house and walked down King Street. The sentinel was still on his post in front of the custom-house, pacing to and fro, while as he turned a gleam of light from some neighboring window glittered on the barrel of his musket.

At no great distance were the barracks and the guard-house, where his comrades were probably telling stories of battle and bloodshed.

Down toward the custom-house, as I told you, came a party of wild young men. When they drew near the sentinel he halted on his post and took his musket from his shoulder, ready to present the bayonet at their breasts.

[Illustration: NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE 1804-1864]

"Who goes there?" he cried, in the gruff, peremptory tones of a soldier's challenge.

The young men, being Boston boys, felt as if they had a right to walk their own streets without being accountable to a British red-coat, even though he challenged them in King George's name. They made some rude answer to the sentinel. There was a dispute, or perhaps a scuffle. Other soldiers heard the noise, and ran hastily from the barracks to assist their comrades. At the same time many of the townspeople rushed into King Street by various avenues and gathered in a crowd round about the custom-house. It seemed wonderful how such a multitude had smarted up all of a sudden.

The wrongs and insults which the people had been suffering for many months now kindled them into a rage. They threw snowballs and lumps of ice at the soldiers. As the tumult grew louder it reached the ears of Captain Preston, the officer of the day. He immediately ordered eight soldiers of the main guard to take their muskets and follow him. They marched across the street, forcing their way roughly through the crowd and pricking the townspeople with their bayonets.

A gentleman (it was Henry Knox, afterward general of the American artillery) caught Captain Preston's arm.

"For Heaven's sake, sir," exclaimed he, "take heed what you do or there will be bloodshed!"

"Stand aside!" answered Captain Preston haughtily. "Do not interfere, sir. Leave me to manage the affair."

Arriving at the sentinel's post, Captain Preston drew up his men in a semicircle with their faces to the crowd and their rear to the custom- house. When the people saw the officer and beheld the threatening attitude with which the soldiers fronted them their rage became almost uncontrollable.

"Fire, you lobster-backs!" bellowed some.

"You dare not fire, you cowardly red-coats!" cried others.

"Rush upon them!" shouted many voices. "Drive the rascals to their barracks! Down with them! Down with them! Let them fire if they dare!"

Amid the uproar the soldiers stood glaring at the people with the fierceness of men whose trade was to shed blood.

Oh, what a crisis had now arrived! Up to this very moment the angry feelings between England and America might have been pacified. England had but to stretch out the hand of reconciliation and acknowledge that she had hitherto mistaken her rights, but would do so no more. Then the ancient bond of brotherhood would again have been knit together as firmly as in old times. The habit of loyalty which had grown as strong as instinct was not utterly overcome. The perils shared, the victories won in the Old French War, when the soldiers of the colonies fought side by side with their comrades from beyond the sea, were unforgotten yet. England was still that beloved country which the colonists called their home. King George, though he had frowned upon America, was still reverenced as a father.

But should the king's soldiers shed one drop of American blood, then it was a quarrel to the death. Never, never would America rest satisfied until she had torn down the royal authority and trampled it in the dust.

"Fire if you dare, villains!" hoarsely shouted the people while the muzzles of the muskets were turned upon them. "You dare not fire!"

[Illustration: THE SOLDIERS FIRED]

They appeared ready to rush upon the leveled bayonets. Captain Preston waved his sword and uttered a command which could not be distinctly heard amid the uproar of shouts that issued from a hundred throats. But his soldiers deemed that he had spoken the fatal mandate, "Fire!" The flash of their muskets lighted up the street, and the report rang loudly between the edifices. It was said, too, that the figure of a man with a cloth hanging down over his face was seen to step into the balcony of the custom-house and discharge a musket at the crowd.

A gush of smoke had overspread the scene. It rose heavily, as if it were loath to reveal the dreadful spectacle beneath it. Eleven of the sons of New England lay stretched upon the street. Some, sorely wounded, were struggling to rise again. Others stirred not nor groaned, for they were past all pain. Blood was streaming upon the snow, and that purple stain in the midst of King Street, though it melted away in the next day's sun, was never forgotten nor forgiven by the people.

The town drums beat to arms, the alarm bells rang, and an immense multitude rushed into King Street. Many of them had weapons in their hands. The British prepared to defend themselves. A whole regiment was drawn up in the street expecting an attack, for the townsmen appeared ready to throw themselves upon the bayonets.

Governor Hutchinson hurried to the spot and besought the people to have patience, promising that strict justice should be done. A day or two afterward the British troops were withdrawn from town and stationed at Castle William. Captain Preston and the eight soldiers were tried for murder, but none of them were found guilty. The judges told the jury that the insults and violence which had been offered to the soldiers justified them in firing at the mob.

[Illustration: THE STEED SWEPT ON]



  Up from the South at break of day,
  Bringing to Winchester fresh dismay,
  The affrighted air with a shudder bore,
  Like a herald in haste, to the chieftain's door,
  The terrible grumble and rumble and roar,
  Telling the battle was on once more,
  And Sheridan twenty miles away.
  And wider still those billows of war
  Thundered along the horizon's bar,
  And louder yet into Winchester rolled
  The roar of that red sea uncontrolled,
  Making the blood of the listener cold
  As he thought of the stake in that fiery fray,
  With Sheridan twenty miles away.

  But there is a road from Winchester town,
  A good, broad highway leading down;
  And there through the flash of the morning light,
  A steed as black as the steeds of night,
  Was seen to pass as with eagle flight.
  As if he knew the terrible need,
  He stretched away with the utmost speed;
  Hills rose and fell,—but his heart was gay,
  With Sheridan fifteen miles away.

* * * * *

  Under his spurning feet the road
  Like an arrowy Alpine river flowed,
  And the landscape sped away behind
  Like an ocean flying before the wind;
  And the steed, like a bark fed with furnace ire,
  Swept on with his wuld eyes full of fire;
  But, lo! he is nearing his heart's desire,
  He is snuffing the smoke of the roaring fray,
  With Sheridan only five miles away.

  The first that the General saw were the groups
  Of stragglers, and then the retreating troops;
  What was done,—what to do,—a glance told him both,
  And, striking his spurs with a terrible oath,
  He dashed down the line mid a storm of huzzas,
  And the wave of retreat checked its course there because
  The sight of the master compelled it to pause.
  With foam and with dust the black charger was gray,
  By the flash of his eye, and his nostril's play
  He seemed to the whole great army to say,

  "I have brought you Sheridan all the way
  From Winchester, down to save the day!"

  Hurrah, hurrah for Sheridan!
  Hurrah, hurrah, for horse and man!
  And when their statues are placed on high,
  Under the dome of the Union sky,—
  To the American soldier's Temple of Fame,—
  There with the glorious General's name
  Be it said in letters both bold and bright:
  "Here is the steed that saved the day
  By carrying Sheridan into the fight,
  From Winchester,—twenty miles away!"

JOAN OF ARC [Footnote: The body of this selection has been much condensed, though the introduction is as De Quincey wrote it.]


What is to be thought of her? What is to be thought of the poor shepherd girl from the hills and forests of Lorraine, [Footnote: Lorraine lay between France and Germany.] that—like the Hebrew shepherd boy [Footnote: David.] from the hills and forests of Judea— rose suddenly out of the quiet, out of the safety, out of the religious inspiration, rooted in deep pastoral solitudes, to a station in the van of armies, and to the more perilous station at the right hand of kings? The Hebrew boy inaugurated his patriotic mission by an act, by a victorious act, [Footnote: The killing of Goliath.] such as no man could deny. But so did the girl of Lorraine, if we read her story as it was read by those who saw her nearest. Adverse armies bore witness to the boy as no pretender; but so they did to the gentle girl. Judged by the voices of all who saw them from a station of good-will, both were found true and loyal to any promises involved in their first acts. Enemies it was that made the difference between their subsequent fortunes. The boy rose to a splendour and a noonday prosperity, both personal and public, that rang through the records of his people, and became a by-word amongst his posterity for a thousand years, until the sceptre was departing from Judah. [Footnote: See Genesis XLIX: 10.] The poor, forsaken girl, on the contrary, drank not herself from that cup of rest which she had secured for France. She never sang together with the songs that rose in her native Domrémy as echoes to the departing steps of invaders. She mingled not in the festal dances at Vaucouleurs which celebrated in rapture the redemption of France. No! for her voice was then silent; no! for her feet were dust. Pure, innocent, noble-hearted girl! whom, from earliest youth, ever I believed in as full of truth and self-sacrifice, this was amongst the pledges for thy truth, that never once—no, not for a moment of weakness—didst thou revel in the vision of coronets and honour from man. Coronets for thee! Oh no! Honours, if they come when all is over, are for those that share thy blood. Daughter of Domrémy, when the gratitude of thy king shall awaken, thou wilt be sleeping the sleep of the dead. Call her, King of France, but she will not hear thee. Cite her by the apparitors to come and receive a robe of honour, but she will be found en contumace. [Footnote: In contempt is the phrase we now apply to a person who fails to appear when summoned to appear in court.] When the thunders of universal France, as even yet may happen, shall proclaim the grandeur of the poor shepherd girl that gave up all for her country, thy ear, young shepherd girl, will have been deaf for five centuries. To suffer and to do, that was thy portion in this life; that was thy destiny; and not for a moment was it hidden from thyself. Life, thou saidst, is short; and the sleep which is in the grave is long; let me use that life, so transitory, for the glory of those heavenly dreams destined to comfort the sleep which is so long! This pure creature—pure from every suspicion of even a visionary self-interest, even as she was pure in senses more obvious—never once did this holy child, as regarded herself, relax from her belief in the darkness that was traveling to meet her. She might not prefigure the very manner of her death; she saw not in vision, perhaps, the aerial altitude of the fiery scaffold, the spectators without end on every road pouring into Rouen as to a coronation, the surging smoke, the volleying flames, the hostile faces all around, the pitying eye that lurked but here and there, until nature and imperishable truth broke loose from artificial restraints;— these might not be apparent through the mists of the hurrying future. But the voice that called her to death, that she heard for ever.

[Illustration: JOAN OF ARC Statue by Chapu, Luxembourg, Paris ]

Great was the throne of France even in those days, and great was he that sat upon it; but well Joanna knew that not the throne, nor he that sat upon it, was for her; but, on the contrary, that she was for them; not she by them, but they by her, should rise from the dust. Gorgeous were the lilies of France, [Footnote: The royal emblem of France was the fleur-de-lys or iris, but in translation the phrase appears lily-flower.] and for centuries had the privilege to spread their beauty over land and sea, until, in another century, the wrath of God and man combined to wither them; but well Joanna knew, early at Domrémy she had read that bitter truth, that the lilies of France would decorate no garland for her. Flower nor bud, bell nor blossom, would ever bloom for her!

* * * * *

Joanna, as we in England should call her, but, according to her own statement, Jeanne (or, as M. Michelet asserts, Jean) D'Arc, was born at Domrémy, a village on the marches of Lorraine and Champagne, and dependent upon the town of Vaucoulcurs. Domrémy stood upon the frontiers, and, like other frontiers, produced a mixed race, representing the cis [Footnote: This side.] and the trans [Footnote: Across; the other side.]. A river (it is true) formed the boundary-line at this point—the river Meuse; and that, in old days, might have divided the populations; but in these days it did not: there were bridges, there were ferries, and weddings crossed from the right bank to the left. Here lay two great roads, not so much for travelers that were few, as for armies that were too many by half. These two roads, one of which was the great highroad between France and Germany, decussated at this very point; which is a learned way of saying that they formed a St. Andrew's Cross, or letter X. I hope the compositor will choose a good large X; in which case the point of intersection, the locus [Footnote: Point or place.] of conflux and intersection for these four diverging arms, will finish the reader's geographical education, by showing him to a hair's-breadth where it was that Domrémy stood. That great four-headed road was a perpetual memento to patriotic ardour. To say "This way lies the road to Paris, and that other way to Aix-la-Chapelle; this to Prague, that to Vienna," nourished the warfare of the heart by daily ministrations of sense. The eye that watched for the gleams of lance or helmet from the hostile frontier, the ear that listened for the groaning of wheels, made the high-road itself, with its relations to centres so remote, into a manual of patriotic duty. The situation, therefore, locally, of Joanna was full of profound suggestions to a heart that listened for the stealthy steps of change and fear that too surely were in motion. But, if the place were grand, the time, the burden of the time, was far more so. The air overhead in its upper chambers was hurtling with the obscure sound; was dark with sullen fermenting of storms that had been gathering for a hundred and thirty years. The battle of Agincourt in Joanna's childhood had reopened the wounds of France. Crécy and Poictiers, those withering overthrows for the chivalry of France, had, before Agincourt occurred, been tranquilized by more than half-a-century; but this resurrection of their trumpet wails made the whole series of battles and endless skirmishes take their stations as parts in one drama. The graves that had closed sixty years ago seemed to fly open in sympathy with a sorrow that echoed their own. The monarchy of France laboured in extremity, rocked and reeled like a ship fighting with the darkness of monsoons. The madness of the poor king (Charles VI) falling in at such a crisis trebled the awfulness of the time. Even the wild story of the incident which had immediately occasioned the explosion of this madness—the case of a man unknown, gloomy, and perhaps maniacal himself, coming out of a forest at noonday, laying his hand upon the bridle of the king's horse, checking him for a moment to say, "Oh, king, thou art betrayed," and then vanishing, no man knew whither, as he had appeared for no man knew what—fell in with the universal prostration of mind that laid France on her knees, as before the slow unweaving of some ancient prophetic doom. The famines, the extraordinary diseases, the insurrections of the peasantry up and down Europe—these were chords struck from the same mysterious harp; but these were transitory chords. There had been others of deeper and more ominous sound. The termination of the Crusades, the destruction of the Templars, the Papal interdicts, the tragedies caused or suffered by the house of Anjou, and by the Emperor—these were full of a more permanent significance.

These were the loftiest peaks of the cloudland in the skies that to the scientific gazer first caught the colours of the new morning in advance. But the whole vast range alike of sweeping glooms overhead dwelt upon all meditative minds, even upon those that could not distinguish the tendencies nor decipher the forms. It was, therefore, not her own age alone as affected by its immediate calamities that lay with such weight upon Joanna's mind, but her own age as one section in a vast mysterious drama, unweaving through a century back, and drawing nearer continually to some dreadful crisis. Cataracts and rapids were heard roaring ahead; and signs were seen far back, by help of old men's memories, which answered secretly to signs now coming forward on the eye, even as locks answer to keys. It was not wonderful that in such a haunted solitude, with such a haunted heart, Joanna should see angelic visions, and hear angelic voices. These voices whispered to her for ever the duty, self-imposed, of delivering France. Five years she listened to these monitory voices with internal struggles. At length she could resist no longer. Doubt gave way; and she left her home for ever in order to present herself at the dauphin's court.

The education of this poor girl was mean according to the present standard: was ineffably grand, according to a purer philosophic standard: and only not good for our age because for us it would be unattainable. She read nothing, for she could not read; but she had heard others read parts of the Roman martyrology. She wept in sympathy with the sad Misereres [Footnote: The penitential psalm which, set to music, is one of the most impressive Roman Catholic chants.] of the Romish Church; she rose to heaven with the glad triumphant Te Deums [Footnote: Te Deum laudamus means "We praise thee, O God" Grand anthems of triumph and thanksgiving are here called "Te Deums" from the first words of an ancient Latin hymn.] of Rome; she drew her comfort and her vital strength from the rites of the same Church. But, next after these spiritual advantages, she owed most to the advantages of her situation. The fountain of Domrémy was on the brink of a boundless forest; and it was haunted to that degree by fairies that the parish priest (curé) was obliged to read mass there once a year, in order to keep them in any decent bounds. Fairies are important, even in a statistical view: certain weeds mark poverty in the soil; fairies mark its solitude. As surely as the wolf retires before cities does the fairy sequester herself from the haunts of the licensed victualer. A village is too much for her nervous delicacy: at most, she can tolerate a distant view of a hamlet. We may judge, therefore, by the uneasiness and extra trouble which they gave to the parson, in what strength the fairies mustered at Domrémy, and, by a satisfactory consequence, how thinly sown with men and women must have been that region even in its inhabited spots. But the forests of Domrémy—those were the glories of the land: for in them abode mysterious powers and ancient secrets that towered into tragic strength. "Abbeys there were, and abbey windows,"— "like Moorish temples of the Hindoos,"—that exercised even princely power both in Lorraine and in the German Diets. These had their sweet bells that pierced the forests for many a league at matins or vespers, and each its own dreamy legend. Few enough, and scattered enough, were these abbeys, so as in no degree to disturb the deep solitude of the region; yet many enough to spread a network or awning of Christian sanctity over what else might have seemed a heathen wilderness. This sort of religious talisman being secured, a man the most afraid of ghosts (like myself, suppose, or the reader) becomes armed into courage to wander for days in their sylvan recesses. About six hundred years before Joanna's childhood, Charlemagne was known to have hunted there. That, of itself, was a grand incident in the traditions of a forest or a chase. In these vast forests, also, were to be found (if anywhere to be found) those mysterious fawns that tempted solitary hunters into visionary and perilous pursuits. Here was seen (if anywhere seen) that ancient stag who was already nine hundred years old, but possibly a hundred or two more, when met by Charlemagne; and the thing was put beyond doubt by the inscription upon his golden collar. I believe Charlemagne knighted the stag; and, if ever he is met again by a king, he ought to be made an earl, or, being upon the marches of France, a marquis. Observe, I don't absolutely vouch for all these things; my own opinion varies. On a fine breezy forenoon I am audaciously sceptical; but as twilight sets in my credulity grows steadily, till it becomes equal to anything that could be desired.

Such traditions, or any others that (like the stag) connect distant generations with each other, are, for that cause, sublime; and the sense of the shadowy, connected with such appearances that reveal themselves or not according to circumstances, leaves a colouring of sanctity over ancient forests, even in those minds that utterly reject the legend as a fact.

But, apart from all distinct stories of that order, in any solitary frontier between two great empires—as here, for instance, or in the desert between Syria and the Euphrates—there is an inevitable tendency, in minds of any deep sensibility, to people the solitudes with phantom images of powers that were of old so vast. Joanna, therefore, in her quiet occupation of a shepherdess, would be led continually to brood over the political condition of her country by the traditions of the past no less than by the mementos of the local present.

It is not requisite for the honour of Joanna, nor is there in this place room, to pursue her brief career of action. That, though wonderful, forms the earthly part of her story; the spiritual part is the saintly passion of her imprisonment, trial, and execution. It is sufficient, as concerns the former section of Joanna's life, to say that she fulfilled, to the height of her promises, the restoration of the prostrate throne. France had become—a province of England, and for the ruin of both, if such a yoke could be maintained. Dreadful pecuniary exhaustion caused the English energy to droop; and that critical opening La Pucelle used with a corresponding felicity of audacity and suddenness (that were in themselves portentous) for introducing the wedge of French native resources, for rekindling the national pride, and for planting the dauphin once more upon his feet. When Joanna appeared, he had been on the point of giving up the struggle with the English, distressed as they were, and of flying to the south of France. She taught him to blush for such abject counsels. She liberated Orleans, that great city, so decisive by its fate for the issue of the war, and then beleaguered by the English with an elaborate application of engineering skill unprecedented in Europe. Entering the city after sunset on the 29th of April, she sang mass on Sunday, May 8, for the entire disappearance of the besieging force. On the 29th of June she fought and gained over the English the decisive battle of Patay; on the 9th of July she took Troyes by a coup-de-main [Footnote: An unexpected and powerful attack] from a mixed garrison of English and Burgundians; on the 15th of that month she carried the dauphin into Rheims; on Sunday the 17th she crowned him; and there she rested from her labour of triumph. All that was to be done she had now accomplished: what remained was—to suffer.

But she, the child that, at nineteen, had wrought wonders so great for France, was she not elated? Did she not lose, as men so often have lost, all sobriety of mind when standing upon the pinnacle of success so giddy? Let her enemies declare. During the progress of her movement, and in the centre of ferocious struggles, she had manifested the temper of her feelings by the pity which she had everywhere expressed for the suffering enemy. She forwarded to the English leaders a touching invitation to unite with the French as brothers, in a common crusade against infidels—thus opening the road for a soldierly retreat. She interposed to protect the captive or the wounded; she mourned over the excesses of her countrymen; she threw herself off her horse to kneel by the dying English soldier, and to comfort him with such ministrations, physical or spiritual, as his situation allowed. "Nolebat," says the evidence, "uti ense suo, aut quemquam interficere." [Footnote: She wished not to kill anyone with her sword] She sheltered the English that invoked her aid in her own quarters. She wept as she beheld, stretched on the field of battle, so many brave enemies that had died without confession. And, as regarded herself, her elation expressed itself thus:—On the day when, she had finished her work, she wept; for she knew that, when her triumphal task was done, her end must be approaching. Her aspirations pointed only to a place which seemed to her more than usually full of natural piety, as one in which it would give her pleasure to die. And she uttered, between smiles and tears, as a wish that inexpressibly fascinated her heart, and yet was half-fantastic, a broken prayer that God would return her to the solitudes from which he had drawn her, and suffer her to become a shepherdess once more. It was a natural prayer, because nature has laid a necessity upon every human heart to seek for rest and to shrink from torment. Yet, again, it was a half-fantastic prayer, because, from childhood upwards, visions that she had no power to mistrust, and the voices which sounded in her ear for ever, had long since persuaded her mind that for her no such prayer could be granted. Too well she felt that her mission must be worked out to the end, and that the end was now at hand. All went wrong from this time. She herself had created the funds out of which the French restoration should grow: but she was not suffered to witness their development, or their prosperous application. More than one military plan was entered upon which she did not approve. But she still continued to expose her person as before. Severe wounds had not taught her caution. And at length, in a sortie from Compiègne (whether through treacherous collusion on the part of her own friends is doubtful to this day), she was made prisoner by the Burgundians; and finally surrendered to the English.

Now came her trial. This trial, moving of course under English
influence, was conducted in chief by the Bishop of Beauvais. He was a
Frenchman, sold to English interests, and hoping, by favour of the
English leaders, to reach the highest preferment.

Never from the foundations of the earth was there such a trial as this, if it were laid open in all its beauty of defence, and all its bullishness of attack. Oh, child of France! shepherdess; peasant girl! trodden under foot by all around thee, how I honour thy flashing intellect, quick as God's lightning, and true as God's lightning to its mark, that ran before France and laggard Europe by many a century, confounding the malice of the ensnarer, and making dumb the oracles of falsehood!

On Easter Sunday, when the trial had been long proceeding, the poor girl fell so ill as to cause a belief that she had been poisoned. It was not poison. Nobody had any interest in hastening a death so certain. M. Michelet, whose sympathies with all feelings are so quick that one would gladly see them always as justly directed, reads the case most truly. Joanna had a twofold malady. She was visited by a paroxysm of the complaint called home-sickness. The cruel nature of her imprisonment, and its length, could not but point her solitary thoughts, in darkness and in chains (for chained she was), to Domrémy. And the season, which was the most heavenly period of the spring, added stings to this yearning. That was one of her maladies—nostalgia, as medicine calls it; the other was weariness and exhaustion from daily combats with malice. She saw that everybody hated her, and thirsted for her blood; nay, many kind-hearted creatures that would have pitied her profoundly, as regarded all political charges, had their natural feelings warped by the belief that she had dealings with fiendish powers. She knew she was to die; that was not the misery; the misery was that this consummation could not be reached without so much intermediate strife, as if she were contending for some chance (where chance was none) of happiness, or were dreaming for a moment of escaping the inevitable. Why, then, did she contend? Knowing that she would reap nothing from answering her persecutors, why did she not retire by silence from the superfluous contest? It was because her quick and eager loyalty to truth would not suffer her to see it darkened by frauds which she could expose, but others, even of candid listeners, perhaps, could not; it was through that imperishable grandeur of soul which taught her to submit meekly and without a struggle to her punishment, but taught her not to submit—no, not for a moment—to calumny as to facts, or to misconstruction as to motives. Besides, there were secretaries all around the court taking down her words. That was meant for no good to her. But the end does not always correspond to the meaning. And Joanna might say to herself, "These words that will be used against me tomorrow and the next day perhaps in some nobler generation may rise again for my justification."

On the Wednesday after Trinity Sunday in 1431, being then about nineteen years of age, the Maid of Arc underwent her martyrdom. She was conducted before mid-day, guarded by eight hundred spearmen, to a platform of prodigious height, constructed of wooden billets supported by occasional walls of lath and plaster, and traversed by hollow spaces in every direction for the creation of air-currents. The pile "struck terror," says M. Michelet, "by its height;" and, as usual, the English purpose in this is viewed as one of pure malignity. But there are two ways of explaining all that. It is probable that the purpose was merciful.

The circumstantial incidents of the execution, unless with more space than I can now command, I should be unwilling to relate. I should fear to injure, by imperfect report, a martyrdom which to myself appears so unspeakably grand. Yet I shall, in parting, allude to one or two traits in Joanna's demeanour on the scaffold, and to one or two in that of the bystanders. The reader ought to be reminded that Joanna D'Arc was subjected to an unusually unfair trial of opinion. Any of the elder Christian martyrs had not much to fear of personal rancour. The martyr was chiefly regarded as the enemy of Caesar; at times, also, where any knowledge of the Christian faith and morals existed, with the enmity that arises spontaneously in the worldly against the spiritual. But the martyr, though disloyal, was not supposed to be therefore anti-national; and still less was individually hateful. What was hated (if anything) belonged to his class, not to himself separately. Now, Joanna, if hated at all, was hated personally, and in Rouen on national grounds. Hence there would be a certainty of calumny arising against her such as would not affect martyrs in general. That being the case, it would follow of necessity that some people would impute to her a willingness to recant. No innocence could escape that. Now, had she really testified this willingness on the scaffold, it would have argued nothing at all but the weakness of a genial nature shrinking from the instant approach of torment. And those will often pity that weakness most who, in their own persons, would yield to it least. Meantime, there never was a calumny uttered that drew less support from the recorded circumstances. It rests upon no positive testimony, and it has a weight of contradicting testimony to stem.

Now, I affirm that she did not recant. I throw the onus [Footnote: Burden.] of the argument not on presumable tendencies of nature, but on the known facts of that morning's execution, as recorded by multitudes. What else, I demand, than mere weight of metal, absolute nobility of deportment, broke the vast line of battle then arrayed against her? What else but her meek, saintly demeanour won, from the enemies that till now had believed her a witch, tears of rapturous admiration? "Ten thousand men," says M. Michelet himself—"ten thousand men wept"; and of these ten thousand the majority were political enemies knitted together by cords of superstition. What else was it but her constancy, united with her angelic gentleness, that drove the fanatic English soldier—who had sworn to throw a faggot on her scaffold, as his tribute of abhorrence, that did so, that fulfilled his vow—suddenly to turn away a penitent for life, saying everywhere that he had seen a dove rising upon wings to heaven from the ashes where she had stood? What else drove the executioner to kneel at every shrine for pardon to his share in the tragedy? And, if all this were insufficient, then I cite the closing act of her life as valid on her behalf, were all other testimonies against her. The executioner had been directed to apply his torch from below. He did so. The fiery smoke rose upwards in billowing volumes. A Dominican monk was then standing almost at her side. Wrapped up in his sublime office, he saw not the danger, but still persisted in his prayers. Even then, when the last enemy was racing up the fiery stairs to seize her, even at that moment did this noblest of girls think only for him, the one friend that would not forsake her, and not for herself; bidding him with her last breath to care for his own preservation, but to leave her to God. That girl, whose latest breath ascended in this sublime expression of self-oblivion, did not utter the word recant either with her lips or in her heart. No, she did not, though one should rise from the dead to swear it.

* * * * *

The shepherd girl that had delivered France—she, from her dungeon, she, from her baiting at the stake, she, from her duel with fire, as she entered her last dream—saw Domrémy, saw the fountain of Domrémy, saw the pomp of forests in which her childhood had wandered. That Easter festival which man had denied to her languishing heart—that resurrection of springtime, which the darkness of dungeons had intercepted from her, hungering after the glorious liberty of forests—were by God given back into her hands, as jewels that had been stolen from her by robbers. With those, perhaps (for the minutes of dreams can stretch into ages), was given back to her by God the bliss of childhood. By special privilege for her might be created, in this farewell dream, a second childhood, innocent as the first; but not, like that, sad with the gloom of a fearful mission in the rear. This mission had now been fulfilled. The storm was weathered; the skirts even of that mighty storm were drawing off. The blood that she was to reckon for had been exacted; the tears that she was to shed in secret had been paid to the last. The hatred to herself in all eyes had been faced steadily, had been suffered, had been survived. And in her last fight upon the scaffold she had triumphed gloriously; victoriously she had tasted the stings of death. For all, except this comfort from her farewell dream, she had died—died, amidst the tears of ten thousand enemies died, amidst the drums and trumpets of armies—died, amidst peals redoubling upon peals, volleys upon volleys, from the saluting clarions of martyrs.

Bishop of Beauvais! because the guilt-burdened man is in dreams haunted and waylaid by the most frightful of his crimes, and because upon that fluctuating mirror-rising (like the mocking mirrors of mirage in Arabian deserts) from the fens of death—most of all are reflected the sweet countenances which the man has laid in ruins; therefore I know, bishop, that you also, entering your final dream, saw Domrémy. That fountain, of which the witnesses spoke so much, showed itself to your eyes in pure morning dews; but neither dews, nor the holy dawn, could cleanse away the bright spots of innocent blood upon its surface. By the fountain, bishop, you saw a woman seated, that hid her face. But, as you draw near, the woman raises her wasted features. Would Domrémy know them again for the features of her child? Ah, but you know them, bishop, well! Oh, mercy! what a groan was that which the servants, waiting outside the bishop's dream at his bedside, heard from his labouring heart, as at this moment he turned away from the fountain and the woman, seeking rest in the forests afar off. Yet not so to escape the woman, whom once again he must behold before he dies. In the forests to which he prays for pity, will he find a respite? What a tumult, what a gathering of feet is there! In glades where only wild deer should run, armies and nations are assembling. There is the Bishop of Beauvais, clinging to the shelter of thickets. What building is that which hands so rapid are raising? Is it a martyr's scaffold? Will they burn the child of Domrémy a second time? No: it is a tribunal that rises to the clouds. Shall my Lord of Beauvais sit again upon the judgment-seat, and again number the hours for the innocent? Ah no! he is the prisoner at the bar. Already all is waiting: the mighty audience is gathered, the Court is hurrying to their seats, the witnesses are arrayed, the judge is taking his place. My lord, have you no counsel? "Counsel I have none: in heaven above, or on earth beneath, counsellor there is none now that would take a brief from me: all are silent." Is it, indeed, come to this? Alas! the time is short, the tumult is wondrous, the crowd stretches away into infinity, but yet I will search in it for somebody to take your brief; I know of somebody that will be your counsel. Who is this that cometh from Domrémy? Who is she in bloody coronation robes from Rheims? Who is she that cometh with blackened flesh from walking the furnaces of Rouen? This is she, the shepherd girl, counsellor that had none for herself, whom I choose, bishop, for yours. She it is, I engage, that shall take my lord's brief. She it is, bishop, that would plead for you: yes, bishop, SHE—when heaven and earth are silent.



Note.—The selection following has been adapted from Fabiola, or The Church of the Catacombs, a tale by Cardinal Wiseman. Pancratius, one of the early Christian martyrs, was a boy of fourteen at the time the story opens and was but little older at his death. At school his nobility incurred the enmity of Corvinus, whose hatred lead to the early denunciation of Pancratius.

When the Roman emperor decided to exterminate the Christians and sought to publish the bloody edict, Pancratius in a perilous attempt succeeded in tearing down and burning the royal proclamation. Corvinus had a narrow escape from the emperor's wrath, and his hatred of Pancratius increased. Unable to secure another victim, Corvinus seized his old schoolmaster and gave him up to torture and death at the hands of his pupils. On his return from this bloody expedition, Corvinus, drunken and reckless, was thrown from his chariot into a canal and would have drowned had not Pancratius rescued him. At that time Pancratius recovered the knife with which he had cut down the edict and which was kept by Corvinus as evidence against the young Christian. Ignorant of his rescuer's name, Corvinus still sought for Pancratius, and this selection shows how he succeeded.

At length they came near one of the chambers which flanked the eastern side of the longer arm of the hall. [Footnote: Corvinus and his, companion are searching among the Christian captives at work on the baths of Diocletian for suitable men to fight the lions in the amphitheater.] In one of them they saw a number of convicts (if we must use the term) resting after their labor. The center of the group was an old man, most venerable in appearance, with a long white beard streaming on his breast, mild in aspect, gentle in word, cheerful in his feeble action. It was the confessor Saturninus, now in his eightieth year, yet loaded with two heavy chains. At each side were the more youthful laborers, Cyriacus and Sisinnius, of whom it is recorded, that in addition to their own task-work, one on each side, they bore up his bonds. Indeed, we are told that their particular delight was, over and above their own assigned portion of toil, to help their weaker brethren, and perform their work for them.

Several other captives lay on the ground about the old man's feet, as he, seated on a block of marble, was talking to them with a sweet gravity, which riveted their attention, and seemed to make them forget their sufferings. What was he saying to them? Was he requiting Cyriacus for his extraordinary charity by telling him that, in commemoration of it, a portion of the immense pile which they were toiling to raise would be dedicated to God under his invocation, become a title, and close its line of titulars by an illustrious name? Or was he recounting another more glorious vision, how this smaller oratory was to be superseded and absorbed by a glorious temple in honour of the Queen of Angels, which should comprise that entire superb hall, with its vestibule, under the directing skill of the mightiest artistic genius that the world should ever see? [Footnote: Michelangelo—The noble and beautiful church of Sta Maria degh Angeli was made by him out of the central hall and circular vestibule. The floor was afterwards raised, and thus the pillars were shortened and the height of the building diminished by several feet.] What more consoling thought could have been vouchsafed to those poor oppressed captives than that they were not so much erecting baths for the luxury of a heathen people, or the prodigality of a wicked emperor, as in truth building up one of the stateliest churches in which the true God is worshiped, and the Virgin Mother, who bore Him incarnate, is affectionately honoured?

From a distance Corvinus saw the group, and pausing, asked the superintendent the names of those who composed it. He enumerated them readily; then added, "You may as well take that old man, if you like; for he is not worth his keep so far as work goes."

"Thank you," replied Corvinus; "a pretty figure he would cut in the amphitheater. The people are not to be put off with decrepit old creatures, whom a single stroke of a bear's or tiger's paw kills outright. They like to see young blood flowing, and plenty of life struggling against wounds and blows before death comes to decide the contest. But there is one there whom you have not named. His face is turned from us; he has not the prisoner's garb, nor any kind of fetter. Who can it be?"

"I do not know his name," answered Rabirius; "but he is a fine youth, who spends much of his time among the convicts, relieves them and even at times helps them in their work. He pays, of course, well for being allowed all this; so it is not our business to ask questions."

"But it is mine, though," said Corvinus sharply; and he advanced for this purpose. The voice caught the stranger's ear, and he turned round to look.

Corvinus sprang upon him with the eye and action of a wild beast, seized him, and called out with exultation, "Fetter him instantly. This time, at least, Pancratius, thou shalt not escape."

* * * * *

Pancratius, with some twenty more, fettered and chained together, was led through the streets to prison. As they were thus dragged along, staggering and stumbling helplessly, they were unmercifully struck by the guards who conducted them; and any persons near enough to reach them dealt them blows and kicks without remorse. Those further off pelted them with stones or offal, and assailed them with insulting ribaldry. They reached the Mamertine prison at last, and were thrust down into it, and found there already other victims, of both sexes, awaiting their time of sacrifice. The youth had just time, while he was being handcuffed, to request one of the captors to inform his mother and Sebastian of what had happened; and he slipt his purse into his hand.

A prison in ancient Rome was not the place to which a poor man might court committal, hoping there to enjoy better fare and lodging than he did at home. Two or three of these dungeons, for they are nothing better, still remain; and a brief description of the one which we have mentioned will give our readers some idea of what confessorship cost, independent of martyrdom.

The Mamertine prison is composed of two square subterranean chambers, one below the other, with only one round aperture in the center of each vault, through which alone light, air, food, furniture, and men could pass. When the upper story was full, we may imagine how much of the two first could reach the lower. No other means of ventilation, drainage, or access could exist. The walls, of large stone blocks, had, or rather have, rings fastened into them, for securing the prisoners, but many used to be laid on the floor, with their feet fastened in the stocks; and the ingenious cruelty of the persecutors often increased the discomfort of the damp stone floor, by strewing with broken potsherds this only bed allowed to the mangled limbs and welted backs of the tortured Christians.

* * * * *

Pancratius and his companions stood before the judge, for it wanted only three days to the munus, or games, at which they were to "fight with wild beasts."

"What art thou?" he asked of one.

"I am a Christian, by the help of God," was the rejoinder.

At length, after having put similar questions and received similar answers from all the others, except from one wretched man, who, to the grief of the rest, wavered and agreed to offer sacrifice, the prefect turned to Pancratius, and thus addressed him: "And now, insolent youth, who hadst the audacity to tear down the Edict of the divine emperors, even for thee there shall be mercy if yet thou wilt sacrifice to the gods. Show thus at once thy piety and thy wisdom, for thou art yet but a stripling."

Pancratius signed himself with the sign of the saving cross, and calmly replied, "I am the servant of Christ. Him I acknowledge by my mouth, hold firm in my heart, incessantly adore. This youth which you behold in me has the—wisdom of grey hairs, if it worship but one God. But your gods, with those who adore them, are destined to eternal destruction."

"Strike him on the mouth for his blasphemy, and beat him with rods," exclaimed the angry judge.

"I thank thee," replied meekly the noble youth, "that thus I suffer some of the same punishment as was inflicted on my Lord."

The prefect then pronounced sentence in the usual form. "Lucianus, Pancratius, Rusticus, and others, and the women Secunda and Rufina, who have all owned themselves Christians, and refuse to obey the sacred emperor, or worship the gods of Rome, we order to be exposed to wild beasts in the Flavian amphitheater."

The mob howled with delight and hatred, and accompanied the confessors back to their prison with this rough music, but they were gradually overawed by the dignity of their gait, and the shining calmness of their countenances. Some men asserted that they must have perfumed themselves, for they could perceive a fragrant atmosphere surrounding their persons.

* * * * *

The morning broke light and frosty; and the sun, glittering on the gilded ornaments of the temples and other public buildings, seemed to array them in holiday splendor. And the people, too, soon come forth into the streets in their gayest attire, decked out with unusual richness. The various streams converge towards the Flavian amphitheater, now better known by the name of the Coliseum. Each one directs his steps to the arch indicated by the number of his ticket, and thus the huge monster keeps sucking in by degrees that stream of life, which soon animates and enlivens its oval tiers over tiers of steps, till its interior is tapestried all round with human faces, and its walls seem to rock and wave to and fro, by the swaying of the living mass. And, after this shall have been gorged with blood and inflamed with fury, it will melt once more, and rush out in a thick continuous flow through the many avenues by which it entered, now bearing their fitting name of Vomitoria; for never did a more polluted stream of the dregs and pests of humanity issue from an unbecoming reservoir, through ill-assorted channels, than the Roman mob, drunk with the blood of martyrs, gushing forth from the pores of the amphitheater.

The emperor came to the games surrounded by his court, with all the pomp and circumstance which befitted an imperial festival, keen as any of his subjects to witness the cruel games, and to feed his eyes with a feast of carnage. His throne was on the eastern side of the amphitheater, where a large space, called the pulvinar, was reserved, and richly decorated for the imperial court.

Various sports succeeded one another; and many a gladiator, killed or wounded, had sprinkled the bright sand with blood, when the people, eager for fiercer combats, began to call, or roar, for the Christians and the wild beasts. It is time, therefore, for us to think of our captives.

Before the citizens were astir, they had been removed from the prison to a strong chamber called the spoliatorium, the press-room, where their fetters and chains were removed. An attempt was made to dress them gaudily as heathen priests and priestesses; but they resisted, urging that as they had come spontaneously to the fight, it was unfair to make them appear in a disguise which they abhorred. During the early part of the day they remained thus together encouraging one another, and singing the Divine praises, in spite of the shouts which drowned their voices from time to time.

While they were thus engaged, Corvinus entered, and, with a look of insolent triumph, thus accosted Pancratius:

"Thanks to the gods, the day is come which I have long desired. It has been a tiresome and tough struggle between us who should fall uppermost. I have won it."

"How sayest thou, Corvinus; when and how have I contended with thee?"

"Always—everywhere. Thou hast haunted me in my dreams; thou hast danced before me like a meteor, and I have tried in vain to grasp thee. Thou hast been my tormentor, my evil genius. I have hated thee; devoted thee to the infernal gods; cursed thee and loathed thee; and now my day of vengeance is come."

"Methinks," replied Pancratius, smiling, "this does not look like a combat. It has been all on one side; for I have done none of these things towards thee."

"No? thinkest thou that I believe thee, when thou hast lain ever as a viper on my path, to bite my heel and overthrow me?"

"Where, I again ask?"

"Everywhere, I repeat. At school; in the Forum; in the cemetery; in my father's own court. Yes, everywhere."

"And nowhere else but where thou hast named? When thy chariot was dashed furiously along the Appian way, didst thou not hear the tramp of horses' hoofs trying to overtake thee?"

"Wretch!" exclaimed the prefect's son in a fury; "and was it thy accursed steed which, purposely urged forward, frightened mine, and nearly caused my death?"

"No, Corvinus, hear me calmly. It is the last time we shall speak together. I was travelling quietly with a companion towards Rome, after having paid the last rites to our master Cassianus" (Corvinus winced, for he knew not this before), "when I heard the clatter of a runaway chariot, and then, indeed, I put spurs to my horse; and it is well for thee that I did."

"How so?"

"Because I reached thee just in time—when thy strength was nearly exhausted, and thy blood almost frozen by repeated plunges in the cold canal; and when thy arm, already benumbed, had let go its last stay, and thou wast falling backwards for the last time into the water. I saw thee—I knew thee, as I took hold of thee, insensible. I had in my grasp the murderer of one most dear to me. Divine justice seemed to have overtaken him; there was only my will between him and his doom. It was my day of vengeance, and I fully gratified it."

"Ha! and how, pray?"

"By drawing thee out, and laying thee on the bank, and chafing thee till thy heart resumed its functions; and then consigning thee to thy servants, rescued from death."

"Thou liest!" screamed Corvinus; "my servants told me that they drew me out."

"And did they give thee my knife, together with thy leopard-skin purse, which I found on the ground, after I had dragged thee forth?"

"No; they said the purse was lost in the canal. It was a leopard-skin purse, the gift of an African sorceress. What sayest thou of the knife?"

"That it is here, see it, still rusty with the water; thy purse I gave to thy slaves; my own knife I retained for myself; look at it again. Dost thou believe me now? Have I been always a viper on thy path?"

Too ungenerous to acknowledge that he had been conquered in the struggle between them, Corvinus only felt himself withered, degraded, before his late school fellow, crumbled like a clot of dust in his hands. His very heart seemed to him to blush. He felt sick, and staggered, hung down his head, and sneaked away. He cursed the games, the emperor, the yelling rabble, the roaring beasts, his horses and chariot, his slaves, his father, himself—but he could not, for his life, curse Pancratius.

He had reached the door, when the youth called him back. He turned and looked at him with a glance of respect, almost approaching to love. Pancratius put his hand on his arm, and said, "Corvinus, I have freely forgiven thee. There is One above, who cannot forgive without repentance. Seek pardon from Him."

Corvinus slunk away, and appeared no more that day. He lost the sight on which his coarse imagination had gloated for days, which he had longed for during months.

As he was leaving the prisoners, the lanista, or master of the gladiators, entered the room and summoned them to the combat. They hastily embraced one another, and took leave on earth. They entered the arena, or pit of the amphitheater, opposite the imperial seat, and had to pass between two files of venatores, or huntsmen, who had the care of the wild beasts, each armed with a heavy whip wherewith he inflicted a blow on every one, as he went by him. They were then brought forward, singly or in groups, as the people desired, or the directors of the spectacle chose. Sometimes the intended prey was placed on an elevated platform to be more conspicuous; at another time he was tied up to posts to be more helpless. A favorite sport was to bundle up a female victim in a net, and expose her to be rolled, tossed, or gored by wild cattle. One encounter with a single wild beast often finished the martyr's course; while occasionally three or four were successively let loose, without their inflicting a mortal wound.

But we must content ourselves with following the last steps of our youthful hero, Pancratius. As he was passing through the corridor that led to the amphitheater, he saw Sebastian standing on one side, with a lady closely enwrapped in her mantle, and veiled. He at once recognized her, stopped before her, knelt, and taking her hand, affectionately kissed it. "Bless me, my dear mother," he said, "in this your promised hour."

"See, my child, the heavens," she replied, "and look up thither, where Christ with His saints expecteth thee. Fight the good fight, for thy soul's sake, and show thyself faithful and steadfast in thy Saviour's love. Remember him too whose relic thou bearest round thy neck." [Footnote: The father of Pancratius had suffered martyrdom, and the relic mentioned was stained with the parent's blood.]

"Its price shall be doubled in thine eyes, my sweet mother, ere many hours are over."

"On, on, an let us have none of this fooling," said the lanista, with a stroke of his cane.

Lucina retreated; while Sebastian pressed the hand of her son, and whispered in his ear, "Courage, dearest boy; may God bless you! I shall be close behind the emperor; give me a last look there, and—your blessing."

Pancratius soon stood in the midst of the arena, the last of the faithful band. He had been reserved, in hopes that the sight of others' sufferings might shake his constancy; but the effect had been the reverse. He took his stand where he was placed, and his yet delicate frame contrasted with the swarthy and brawny limbs of the executioners who surrounded him. They now left him alone; and we cannot better describe him than Eusebius, an eye-witness, does a youth a few years older:

"You might have seen a tender youth, who had not yet entered his twentieth year, standing without fetters, with his hands stretched forth in the form of a cross, and praying to God most attentively, with a fixed and untrembling heart; not retiring from the place where he first stood, nor swerving the least, while bears and leopards, breathing fury and death in their very snort, were just rushing on to tear his limbs in pieces. And yet, I know not how, their jaws seemed seized and closed by some divine and mysterious power, and they drew altogether back."

Such was the attitude, and such the privilege of our heroic youth. The mob were frantic, as they saw one wild beast after another careering madly round him, roaring and lashing its sides with its tail, while he seemed placed in a charmed circle, which they could not approach. A furious bull, let loose upon him, dashed madly forward, with his neck bent down, then stopped suddenly, as though he had struck his head against a wall, pawed the ground, and scattered the dust around him, bellowing fiercely.

"Provoke him, thou coward!" roared out, still louder, the enraged emperor.

Pancratius awoke as from a trance, and waving his arms, ran towards his enemy; but the savage brute, as if a lion had been rushing on him, turned round, and ran away towards the entrance, where, meeting his keeper, he tossed him high into the air. All were disconcerted except the brave youth, who had resumed his attitude of prayer; when one of the crowd shouted out, "He has a charm round his neck; he is a sorcerer!" The whole multitude reechoed the cry, till the emperor, having commanded silence, called out to him, "Take that amulet from thy neck, and cast it from thee."

"Sire," replied the youth, with a musical voice, that rang sweetly through the hushed amphitheater, "it is no charm that I wear, but a memorial of my father, who in this very place made gloriously the same confession which I now humbly make: I am a Christian; and for love of Jesus Christ, God and man, I gladly give my life. Do not take from me this only legacy. Try once more; it was a panther which gave him his crown; perhaps it will bestow the same on me."

For an instant there was dead silence; the multitude seemed softened, won. The graceful form of the gallant youth, his now inspired countenance, the thrilling music of his voice, the intrepidity of his speech, and his generous self-devotion to his cause, had wrought upon that cowardly herd. Pancratius felt it, and his heart quailed before their mercy more than before their rage; he had promised himself heaven that day; was he to be disappointed? Tears started into his eyes, as stretching forth his arms once more in the form of a cross, he called aloud:

"Today; oh yes, today, most blessed Lord, is the appointed day of Thy coming. Tarry not longer; show now Thy mercy to me who in Thee believe!"

"The panther!" shouted out a voice. "The panther!" responded twenty. "The panther!" thundered forth a hundred thousand, in a chorus like the roaring of an avalanche. A cage started up, as if by magic, from the midst of the sand, and as it rose, its side fell down, and freed the captive of the desert. With one graceful bound the elegant savage gained its liberty; and, though enraged by darkness, confinement, and hunger, it seemed almost playful as it leaped and turned about. At last it caught sight of its prey. All its feline cunning and cruelty seemed to return and to conspire together in animating the cautious and treacherous movements of its velvet-clothed frame. The whole amphitheater was as silent as if it had been a hermit's cell, while every eye was intent, watching the stealthy approaches of the sleek brute to its victim. Pancratius was still standing in the same place, facing the emperor, apparently so absorbed in higher thoughts as not to heed the movements of his enemy. The panther had stolen round him, as if disdaining to attack him except in front. Crouching upon its breast, slowly advancing one paw before another, it had gained its measured distance, and there it lay for some moments of breathless suspense. A deep snarling growl, an elastic spring through the air, and it was seen gathered up with its hind feet on the chest and its fangs and fore claws on the throat of the martyr.

He stood erect for a moment, brought his right hand to his mouth, and looking up at Sebastian with a smile, directed to him, by a graceful wave of his arm, the last salutation of his lip—and fell. The arteries of the neck had been severed, and the slumber of martyrdom at once settled on his eyelids. His blood softened, brightened, enriched, and blended inseparably with that of his father. The mother's sacrifice had been accepted.

[Footnote: This selection is taken from A Child's History of
. Much of the history of Alfred is traditional, and it is
not at all probable that Dickens's picture is strictly true.]


Alfred the Great was a young man, three and twenty years of age, when he became king. [Footnote: Alfred was a grandson of Egbert, the first king of England. Ethelwulf, son of Egbert, and his three older sons had been kings of England, when in 871 Alfred ascended the throne.] Twice in his childhood he had been taken to Rome, where the Saxon nobles were in the habit of going on journeys which they supposed to be religious; and once he had stayed for some time in Paris. Learning, however, was so little cared for then, that at twelve years old he had not been taught to read; although, of the four sons of King Ethelwulf, he, the youngest, was the favorite. But he had—as most men who grow up to be great and good are generally found to have had—an excellent mother; and, one day, this lady, whose name was Osburgha, happened, as she was sitting among her sons, to read a book of Saxon poetry. The art of printing was not known until long and long after that period, and the book, which was written, was what is called "illuminated," with beautiful bright letters, richly painted. The brothers admiring it very much, their mother said, "I will give it to that one of you four princes who first learns to read." Alfred sought out a tutor that very day, applied himself to learn with great diligence, and soon won the book. He was proud of it all his life.

This great king, in the first year of his reign, fought nine battles with the Danes. He made some treaties with them too, by which the false Danes swore that they would quit the country. They pretended to consider that they had taken a very solemn oath in swearing this upon the holy bracelets that they wore, and which were always buried with them when they died; but they cared little for it, for they thought nothing of breaking oaths, and treaties too, as soon as it suited their purpose, and coming back again to fight, plunder, and burn, as usual. One fatal winter, in the fourth year of King Alfred's reign, they spread themselves in great numbers over the whole of England; and so dispersed and routed the king's soldiers that the king was left alone, and was obliged to disguise himself as a common peasant, and to take refuge in the cottage of one of his cowherds who did not know his face.

Here, King Alfred, while the Danes sought him far and wide, was left alone one day, by the cowherd's wife, to watch some cakes which she put to bake upon the hearth. But, being at work upon his bows and arrows, with which he hoped to punish the false Danes when a brighter time should come, and thinking deeply of his poor unhappy subjects whom the Danes chased through the land, his noble mind forgot the cakes, and they were burnt. "What!" said the cowherd's wife, who scolded him well when she came back, and little thought she was scolding the king, "you will be ready enough to eat them by and by, and yet you cannot watch them, idle dog?"

At length, the Devonshire men made head against a new host of Danes who landed on their coast; killed their chief, and captured their flag, on which was represented the likeness of a Raven—a very fit bird for a thievish army like that, I think. The loss of their standard troubled the Danes greatly, for they believed it to be enchanted—woven by the three daughters of one father in a single afternoon—and they had a story among themselves that when they were victorious in battle, the Raven stretched his wings and seemed to fly; and that when they were defeated, he would droop. He had good reason to droop now, if he could have done anything half so sensible; for King Alfred joined the Devonshire men, made a camp with them on a piece of firm ground in the midst of a bog in Somersetshire, and prepared for a great attempt for vengeance on the Danes, and the deliverance of his oppressed people.

But first, as it was important to know how numerous those pestilent Danes were, and how they were fortified, King Alfred, being a good musician, disguised himself as a gleeman or minstrel, and went, with his harp, to the Danish camp. He played and sang in the very tent of Guthrum, the Danish leader, and entertained the Danes as they caroused. While he seemed to think of nothing but his music, he was watchful of their tents, their arms, their discipline, everything that he desired to know. And right soon did this great king entertain them to a different tune; for, summoning all his true followers to meet him at an appointed place, where they received him with joyful shouts and tears, as the monarch whom many of them had given up for lost or dead, he put himself at their head, marched on the Danish camp, defeated the Danes with great slaughter, and besieged them for fourteen days to prevent their escape. But, being as merciful as he was good and brave, he then, instead of killing them, proposed peace, on condition that they should altogether depart from the western part of England and settle in the east, and that Guthrum should become a Christian in remembrance of the Divine religion which now taught his conqueror, the noble Alfred, to forgive the enemy who had so often injured him. This Guthrum did. At his baptism, King Alfred was his godfather. And Guthrum was an honorable chief who well deserved that clemency; for, ever afterwards, he was loyal and faithful to the king. The Danes under him were faithful too. They plundered and burned no more, but worked like honest men. They ploughed, and sowed, and reaped, and led good honest English lives. And I hope the children of those Danes played, many a time, with Saxon children in the sunny fields; and that Danish young men fell in love with Saxon girls, and married them; and that English travelers, benighted at the doors of Danish cottages, often went in for shelter until morning; and that Danes and Saxons sat by the red fire, friends, talking of King Alfred the Great.

All the Danes were not like these under Guthrum; for after some years, more of them came over, in the old plundering and burning way-among them a fierce pirate of the name of Hastings, who had the boldness to sail up the Thames to Gravesend with eighty ships. For three years there was a war with these Danes; and there was a famine in the country, too, and a plague, both upon human creatures and beasts. But King Alfred, whose mighty heart never failed him, built large ships nevertheless, with which to pursue the pirates on the sea; and he encouraged his soldiers, by his brave example, to fight valiantly against them on the shore. At last, he drove them all away, and then there was repose in England.

As great and good in peace as he was great and good in war, King Alfred never rested from his labors to improve his people. He loved to talk with clever men and with travelers from foreign countries, and to write down what they told him for his people to read. He had studied Latin after learning to read English, and now another of his labors was to translate Latin books into the English-Saxon tongue, that his people might be interested and improved by their contents.[Footnote: He is said to have translated large portions of the Bible into Anglo Saxon.] He made just laws, that they might live more happily and freely; he turned away all partial judges that no wrong might be done them; he was so careful of their property, and punished robbers so severely, that it was a common thing to say that under the great King Alfred garlands of golden chains and jewels might have hung across the streets, and no man would have touched one. He founded schools; he patiently heard causes himself in his court of justice, the great desires of his heart were to do right to all his subjects, and to leave England better, wiser, happier in all ways, than he found it.


His industry in these efforts was quite astonishing. Every day he divided into certain portions, and in each portion devoted himself to a certain pursuit. That he might divide his time exactly, he had wax torches or candles made, which were all of the same size, were notched across at regular distances, and were always kept burning. Thus, as the candles burnt down, he divided the day into notches almost as accurately as we now divide it into hours upon the clock. But when the candles were first invented, it was found that the wind and draughts of air, blowing into the palace through the doors and windows and through the chinks in the wall, caused them to gutter and burn unequally. To prevent this, the king had them put into cases formed of wood and white horn. And these were the first lanthorns [Footnote: This is the early form of our word lantern.] ever made in England. All this time he was afflicted with a terrible unknown disease, which caused him violent and frequent pain that nothing could relieve. He bore it, as he had borne all the troubles of his life, like a brave, good man, until he was fifty-three years old; and then, having reigned thirty years, he died. He died in the year nine hundred and one; but long ago as that is, his fame, and the love and gratitude with which his subjects regarded him, are freshly remembered to the present hour.



NOTE.-The biblical account of the death of Moses, upon which The Burial of Moses is based, is given in the thirty-fourth chapter of Deuteronomy, and reads as follows:

And Moses went up from the plains of Moab unto the mountain of Nebo, to the top of Pisgah, that is over against Jericho.

And the Lord shewed him all the land of Gilead, unto Dan.

And all Napthtali, and the land of Ephraim, and Manasseh, and all the land of Judah, unto the utmost sea.

And the south, and the plain of the valley of Jericho, the city of palm trees, unto Zoar.

And the Lord said unto him, This is the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying, I will give it unto thy seed: I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go over thither.

So Moses the servant of the Lord died there in the land of Moab, according to the word of the Lord.

And he buried him in a valley in the land of Moab, over against Beth- peor: but no man knoweth of his sepulchre unto this day.

  By Nebo's lonely mountain,
   On this side Jordan's wave,
  In a vale in the land of Moab
   There lies a lonely grave.
  And no man knows that sepulchre,
   And no man saw it e'er,
  For the angels of God upturned the sod,
   And laid the dead man there.

  That was the grandest funeral
   That ever passed on earth;
  But no man heard the trampling,
   Or saw the train go forth—
  Noiselessly as the daylight
   Comes back when night is done,
  And the crimson streak on ocean's cheek
   Grows into the great sun.

  Noiselessly as the springtime
   Her crown of verdure weaves,
  And all the trees on all the hills
   Open their thousand leaves;
  So without sound of music,
   Or voice of them that wept,
  Silently down from the mountain's crown
   The great procession swept.

  Perchance the bald old eagle,
   On gray Beth-peor's height,
  Out of his lonely eyrie
   Looked on the wondrous sight;
  Perchance the lion stalking,
   Still shuns that hallowed spot,
  For beast and bird have seen and heard
   That which man knoweth not.

  But when the warrior dieth,
   His comrades in the war,
  With arms reversed and muffled drums,
   Follow his funeral car;
  They show the banners taken,
   They tell his battles won,
  And after him lead his masterless steed,
   While peals the minute gun.

  Amid the noblest of the land
   We lay the sage to rest,
  And give the bard an honored place
   With costly marble drest,
  In the great minster transept,
   Where lights like glories fall,
  And the organ rings, and the sweet choir sings,
   Along the emblazoned wall.

  This was the truest warrior
   That ever buckled sword;
  This the most gifted poet
   That ever breathed a word.
  And never earth's philosopher
   Traced with his golden pen
  On the deathless page truths half so sage
   As he wrote down for men.

  And had he not high honor?—
   The hillside for a pall,
  To lie in state, while angels wait,
   With stars for tapers tall;
  And the dark rock-pines, like tossing plumes,
   Over his bier to wave,
  And God's own hand in that lonely land
   To lay him in the grave,—

  In that strange grave without a name,
   Whence his uncoffined clay
  Shall break again, O wondrous thought!
   Before the judgment day,
  And stand with glory wrapt around
   On the hills he never trod;
  And speak of the strife, that won our life,
   With the incarnate son of God.

  O lonely grave in Moab's land!
   O dark Beth-peor's hill!
  Speak to these curious hearts of ours,
   And teach them to be still.
  God hath his mysteries of grace,
   Ways that we cannot tell;
  He hides them deep, like the hidden sleep
   Of him He loved so well.



NOTE.—Bernardo del Carpio, a Spanish warrior and grandee, having made many ineffectual attempts to procure the release of his father, the Count Saldana, declared war against King Alphonso of Asturias. At the close of the struggle, the king agreed to terms by which he rendered up his prisoner to Bernardo, in exchange for the castle of Carpio and the captives confined therein. When the warrior pressed forward to greet his father, whom he had not seen for many years, he found a corpse on horseback.

  The warrior bowed his crested head, and tamed his heart of fire,
  And sued the haughty king to free his long imprisoned sire:
  "I bring thee here my fortress keys, I bring my captive train,
  I pledge thee faith, my liege, my lord! O, break my father's chain!"

  "Rise! Rise! even now thy father comes, a ransomed man this day!
  Mount thy good horse: and thou and I will meet him on his way."
  Then lightly rose that loyal son, and bounded on his steed,
  And urged, as if with lance in rest, the charger's foamy speed.

  And, lo, from far, as on they pressed, there came a glittering band,
  With one that midst them stately rode, as a leader in the land:
  "Now haste, Bernardo, haste! for there, in very truth, is he,
  The father whom thy faithful heart hath yearned so long to see."

  His dark eye flashed, his proud breast heaved, his cheek's hue
       came and went;
  He reached that gray-haired chieftain's side, and there,
       dismounting, bent;
  A lowly knee to earth he bent, his father's hand he took,—
  What was there in its touch that all his fiery spirit shook?

  That hand was cold,—a frozen thing,—it dropped from his like lead;
  He looked up to the face above,—the face was of the dead!
  A plume waved o'er the noble brow,—the brow was fixed and white;
  He met, at last, his father's eyes,—but in them was no sight!

  Up from the ground he sprang and gazed; but who could paint that
  They hushed their very hearts that saw its horror and amaze:
  They might have chained him, as before that stony form he stood;
  For the power was stricken from his arm, and from his lip the blood.

  "Father!" at length, he murmured low, and wept like childhood then:
  Talk not of grief till thou hast seen the tears of warlike men!
  He thought on all his glorious hopes, and all his young renown;
  He flung his falchion from his side, and in the dust sat down.

  Then covering with his steel-gloved hands his darkly mournful brow,—
  "No more, there is no more," he said, "to lift the sword for now;
  My king is false,—my hope betrayed! My father,—O the worth,
  The glory, and the loveliness are passed away from earth!

  "I thought to stand where banners waved, my sire, beside thee, yet;
  I would that there our kindred blood on Spain's free soil had met!
  Thou wouldst have known my spirit, then; for thee my fields were won;
  And thou hast perished in thy chains, as though thou hadst no son!"

  Then, starting from the ground once more, he seized the monarch's
  Amidst the pale and wildered looks of all the courtier train;
  And with a fierce, o'ermastering grasp, the rearing war-horse led,
  And sternly set them face to face,—the king before the dead:

  "Came I not forth, upon thy pledge, my father's hand to kiss?
  Be still, and gaze thou on, false king! and tell me what is this?
  The voice, the glance, the heart I sought,—give answer, where
         are they?
  If thou wouldst clear thy perjured soul, send life through this
         cold clay;

  "Into these glassy eyes put light;—be still! keep down thine ire!
  Bid these white lips a blessing speak,—this earth is not my sire:
  Give me back him for whom I strove,—for whom my blood was shed.
  Thou canst not?—and a king!—his dust be mountains on thy head!"

  He loosed the steed,—his slack hand fell; upon the silent face
  He cast one long, deep, troubled look, then turned from that sad
  His hope was crushed, his after fate untold in martial strain:
  His banner led the spears no more amidst the hills of Spain.



You will never meet a more interesting character in history than David, the great king of the Israelites, who, it is usually claimed, reigned from about 1055 B.C. to 1015 B.C. Under David the Jews reached the height of their power, and he is regarded as their greatest conqueror.

A full biography would be an account of a succession of battles with his enemies the Philistines in which he was always victorious unless, as a punishment for some of the sins his fiery nature led him into, he was temporarily in defeat. Out of the many instances which the Bible gives, we have selected as the most vivid and interesting the accounts of his victory over Goliath, his relations to Saul and Jonathan and the rebellion of his own son Absalom. The story is told as it appears in Hebrew scriptures and is taken from the first and second books of Samuel, but in order to make the story continuous the arrangement of the verses has been changed somewhat. For greater clearness, the scheme of paragraphing has been changed, quotation marks have been used, and other departures made from the old form of printing in bibles.

The interesting story is told with all the vivid directness of the Jewish scriptures, and every one must admire the poetic beauty so characteristic of oriental writings. David's compact with Jonathan, his sad lament over the death of his traitorous son, and the grand anthem which he sings in gratitude for his victories, show that the great king was more than a warrior and ruler.

In truth, David was as much a poet and musician as he was a warrior and king, for not only did he, by his skill on the harp, quiet the raging fury of Saul's anger, but he wrote, also, the grandest psalms in existence. The Twenty-third Psalm and the One Hundred Third Psalm which, among others, are printed elsewhere in this work, are fine examples of his skill and art.


Now the Philistines gathered together their armies to battle against Israel. And Saul and the men or Israel were gathered together and set the battle in array against the Philistines.

And the Philistines stood on a mountain on the one side, and Israel stood on a mountain on the other side: and there was a valley between them.

And there went out a champion out of the camp of the Philistines, named Goliath, of Gath, whose height was six cubits and a span. And the staff of his spear was like a weaver's beam; and his spear's head weighed six hundred shekels of iron: and one bearing a shield went before him.

And he stood and cried unto the armies of Israel, and said unto them, "Why are ye come out to set your battle in array? Am I not a Philistine and ye servants to Saul? Choose you a man for you and let him come down to me. If he be able to fight with me, and to kill me, then will we be your servants: but if I prevail against him, and kill him, then shall ye be our servants, and serve us. I defy the armies of Israel this day; give me a man, that we may fight together."

When Saul and all Israel heard these words of the Philistine, they were dismayed, and greatly afraid.

Now there was a man whose name was Jesse, and he had eight sons, and the three eldest followed Saul to the battle. And David, his youngest son, fed his father's sheep at Bethlehem.

And the Philistine drew near, morning and evening, and presented himself forty days.

And Jesse said unto David, his son, "Take now to thy brethren an ephah of this parched corn, and these ten loaves, and run to the camp to thy brethren; and carry these ten cheeses unto the captain and their thousand, and look how thy brethren fare, and take their pledge."

And David rose up early in the morning, and left his sheep with a keeper, and took, and went, as Jesse had commanded him; and he came to the trench, as the host was going forth to the fight, and shouted for the battle, for Israel and the Philistines had put the battle in array, army against army.

And David left his carriage in the hand of the keeper of the carriage, and ran into the army, and came and saluted his brethren.

And as he talked with them, behold, there came up the champion, the
Philistine of Gath, Goliath by name, out of the armies of the
Philistines, and spake according to the same words: and David heard

And all the men of Israel, when they saw the man, fled from him, and were sore afraid. And then the men of Israel said, "Have ye seen this man that is come up?"

Aid David spake to the men that stood by him saying, "What shall be done to the man that killeth this Philistine and taketh away the reproach from Israel? Who is this Philistine that he should defy the armies of the living God?"

And the people answered him after this manner, saying, "The man who killeth him, the king will enrich him with great riches, and will give him his daughter, and make his father's house free in Israel."

And David's eldest brother heard when he spake unto the men, and his anger was kindled against David and he said, "Why comest thou down hither, and with whom hast thou left those few sheep in the wilderness? I know thy pride and the naughtiness of thine heart, for thou art come down that thou mightest see the battle."

And David said, "What have I now done? Is there not a cause?"

And he turned from him toward another, and spake after the same manner: and the people answered again after the former manner.

And when the words were heard that David spake, some one rehearsed them before Saul, and he sent for David.

And David said to Saul, "Let no man's heart fail because of him; thy servant will go and fight with this Philistine."

And Saul said to David, "Thou art not able to go against this Philistine to fight with him: for thou art but a youth, and he a man of war from his youth."

And David said unto Saul, "Thy servant kept his father's sheep, and there came a lion, and a bear, and took a lamb out of the flock. And I went out after him, and smote him, and delivered it out of his mouth: and when he arose against me, I caught him by his beard, and smote him, and slew him. Thy servant slew both the lion and the bear: and this Philistine shall be as one of them, seeing he hath defied the armies of the living God.

"The Lord that delivered me out of the paw of the lion, and out of the paw of the bear, he will deliver me out of the hand of this Philistine."

And Saul said unto David, "Go, and the Lord be with thee."

And Saul armed David with his armour, and he put an helmet of brass upon his head; also he armed him with a coat of mail. And David girded his sword upon his armour, and he essayed to go. But David said unto Saul, "I cannot go with these; for I have not proved them."

And David put them off him; and he took his staff in his hand, and chose him five smooth stones out of the brook, and put them in a shepherd's bag which he had, even in a scrip; and his sling was in his hand: and he drew near to the Philistine.

And the Philistine came on and drew near unto David; and the man that bare the shield went before him. And when the Philistine looked about, and saw David, he disdained him: for he was but a youth, and ruddy, and of a fair countenance.


And the Philistine said unto David, "Am I a dog, that thou comest to me with staves?" And he cursed David by his gods, and said, "Come to me and I will give thy flesh unto the fowls of the air, and to the beasts of the field."

Then said David to the Philistine, "Thou comest to me with a sword, and with a spear, and with a shield: but I come to thee in the name of the Lord of hosts, the God of the armies of Israel, whom thou hast defied. This day will the Lord deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel. And all this assembly shall know that the Lord saveth not with sword and spear: for the battle is the Lord's, and he will give you into our hands."

And it came to pass, when the Philistine arose, and came and drew nigh to meet David, that David hasted, and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang it, and smote the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth.

So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him; but there was no sword in the hand of David. Therefore David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him, and cut off his head therewith. And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled.

And the men of Israel and Judah arose, and shouted, and pursued the Philistines; and the wounded of the Philistines fell down by the way even unto Gath, and unto Ekron. And the children of Israel returned from chasing after the Philistines, and they spoiled their tents.

And David took the head of the Philistine and brought it to Jerusalem, but he put his armour in his tent.

Now when Saul saw David go forth against the Philistine, he said unto
Abner, the captain of the host, "Abner, whose son is this youth?"

And Abner answered, "As thy soul liveth, O king, I cannot tell."

And the king said, "Inquire thou whose son the stripling is."

And as David returned from the slaughter of the Philistine, Abner took him, and brought him before Saul with the head of the Philistine in his hand.

And Saul said to him, "Whose son art thou, thou young man?"

And David answered, "I am the son of thy servant Jesse the

And Saul took him that day and would let him go no more to his father's house. And David went out whithersoever Saul sent him and behaved himself wisely. And Saul set him over the men of war, and he was accepted in the sight of all the people, and also in the sight of Saul's servants.


Now Saul, king of Israel, had a son Jonathan whom he dearly loved, a brave warrior and a noble man.

When David, returning from his victory over Goliath, told the story of his fight, Jonathan stood by, a listener.

And when David had made an end of speaking, the soul of Jonathan was knit with the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul.

And it came to pass, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Philistine, that the women came out of all the cities of Israel, singing and dancing, to meet king Saul, with tabrets, with joy, and with instruments of music.

And the women answered one another as they played, and said, "Saul hath slain his thousands, and David his ten thousands."

And Saul was very wroth, and the saying displeased him; and he said, "They have ascribed unto David ten thousands, and to me they have ascribed but thousands: and what can he have more but the kingdom?"

And Saul eyed David from that day and forward.

And Saul was afraid of David, because the Lord was with him, and was departed from Saul. Therefore Saul removed him from him, and made him his captain over a thousand; and he went out and came in before the people.

And David behaved himself wisely in all his ways; and the Lord was with him. Wherefore when Saul saw that he behaved himself very wisely, he was afraid of him. But all Israel and Judah loved David, because he went out and came in before them.

And Michal, Saul's daughter, loved David: and they told Saul, and the thing pleased him.

Saul said, "I will give him her that she may be a snare to him and that the hand of the Philistines may be against him." Wherefore Saul said to David, "Thou shalt this day be my son-in-law."

And David said unto Saul, "Who am I? and what is my life, or my father's family in Israel, that I should be son-in-law to the king?"

And Saul commanded his servants, saying, "Commune with David secretly, and say, 'Behold the king hath delight in thee, and all his servants love thee; now, therefore, be the king's son-in-law.'"

Saul's servants spake those words in the ears of David.


And David said, "Seemeth it to you a light thing to be the king's son- in-law, seeing that I am a poor man and lightly esteemed?"

And the servants of Saul told him what David had said, saying, "On this manner spake David."

And Saul said, "Thus shall ye say to David, 'The king desireth no dowry but the slaughter of an hundred Philistines, to be avenged upon the king's enemies.'"

But Saul thought to make David fall by the hands of the Philistines. And when the servants told David these words it pleased David well to be the king's son-in-law. Wherefore David arose and went, he and his men, and slew of the Philistines two hundred men.

And David came and told Saul, and Saul gave him his daughter Michal to wife.

And Saul saw and knew that the Lord was with David, and that Michal,
Saul's daughter, loved him.

And Saul was yet the more afraid of David; and Saul became David's enemy continually.

Then the princes of the Philistines went forth: and it came to pass, after they went forth, that David behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul; so that his name was much set by.

And Saul spake to Jonathan his son, and to all his servants, that they should kill David.

But Jonathan, Saul's son, delighted much in David: and Jonathan told David, saying, "Saul my father seeketh to kill thee; now therefore, I pray thee, take heed to thyself until the morning, and abide in a secret place, and hide thyself. And I will go out and stand beside my father in the field where thou art, and I will commune with my father of thee; and what I see I will tell thee."

And Jonathan spake good of David unto Saul his father, and said unto him, "Let not the king sin against his servant, against David; because he hath not sinned against thee, and because his works have been to thee-ward very good. For he did put his life in his hand, and slew the Philistine, and the Lord wrought a great salvation for all Israel: thou sawest it, and didst rejoice: wherefore then wilt thou sin against innocent blood, to slay David without a cause?"

And Saul hearkened unto the voice of Jonathan: and Saul sware, "As the
Lord liveth, he shall not be slain."

And Jonathan called David, and Jonathan shewed him all those things. And Jonathan brought David to Saul, and he was in his presence, as in times past.

And there was war again: and David went out and fought with the Philistines, and slew them with a great slaughter; and they fled from him.

And the evil spirit from the Lord was upon Saul, as he sat in his house with his javelin in his hand; and David played with his hand.

And Saul sought to smite David even to the wall with the javelin; but he slipped away out of Saul's presence, and he smote the javelin into the wall: and David fled, and escaped that night.

Saul also sent messengers, unto David's house, to watch him, and to slay him in the morning: and Michal, David's wife, told him, saying, "If thou save not thy life to-night, to-morrow thou shalt be slain."

So Michal let David down through a window: and he went, and fled, and escaped.

And Michal took an image, and laid it in the bed, and put a pillow of goat's hair for his bolster, and covered it with a cloth.

And when Saul sent messengers to take David, he said, "He is sick."

And Saul sent the messengers again to see David, saying, "Bring him up to me in the bed, that I may slay him."

And when the messengers were come in, behold, there was an image in the bed, with a pillow of goat's hair for his bolster.

And Saul said unto Michal, "Why hast thou deceived me so, and sent away mine enemy, that he is escaped?" And Michal answered Saul, "He said unto me, 'Let me go; why should I kill thee?'"

So David fled and escaped and went and dwelt with Naioth, whither
Saul's messengers came to slay him.

And David fled from Naioth in Ramah, and came and said before Jonathan, "What have I done? What is my iniquity? and what is my sin before thy father, that he seeketh my life?"

And he said unto him, "God forbid; thou shalt not die: behold, my father will do nothing either great or small, but that he will shew it me: and why should my father hide this thing from me? it is not so."

And David sware moreover, and said, "Thy father certainly knoweth that I have found grace in thine eyes; and he saith, 'Let not Jonathan know this, lest he be grieved:' but truly as the Lord liveth, and as thy soul liveth, there is but a step between me and death."

Then said Jonathan unto David, "Whatsoever thy soul desireth, I will even do it for thee."

And David said unto Jonathan, "Behold, tomorrow is the new moon, and I should not fail to sit with the king at meat: but let me go, that I may hide myself in the field unto the third day at even.

"If thy father at all miss me, then say, 'David earnestly asked leave of me that he might run to Bethlehem his city: for there is a yearly sacrifice there for all the family.'

"If he say thus, 'It is well;' thy servant shall have peace: and if he be very wroth, then be sure that evil is determined by him.

"Therefore, thou shalt deal kindly with thy servant; for thou hast brought thy servant into a covenant of the Lord with thee: notwithstanding, if there be in me iniquity, slay me thyself; for why shouldest thou bring me to thy father?"

And Jonathan said, "Far be it from thee: for if I knew certainly that evil were determined by my father to come upon thee, then would I not tell it thee?"

Then said David to Jonathan, "Who shall tell me? or what if thy father answer thee roughly?"

And Jonathan said unto David, "Come, and let us go out into the field."
And they went out both of them into the field.

And Jonathan said unto David, "O Lord God of Israel, when I have sounded my father about tomorrow any time, or the third day, and, behold, if there be good toward David, and I then send not unto thee, and shew it thee; the Lord do so and much more to Jonathan: but if it please my father to do thee evil, then I will shew it thee, and send thee away, that thou mayest go in peace: and the Lord be with thee, as he hath been with my father.

"And thou shalt not only while yet I live shew me the kindness of the
Lord, that I die not; but also thou shalt not cut off thy kindness from
my house for ever: no, not when the Lord hath cut off the enemies of
David every one from the face of the earth."

So Jonathan made a covenant with the house of David, saying, "Let the Lord even require it at the hand of David's enemies." And Jonathan caused David to swear again, because he loved him: for he loved him as he loved his own soul.

Then Jonathan said to David, "To-morrow is the new moon: and thou shalt be missed, because thy seat will be empty. And when thou hast stayed three days, then thou shalt go down quickly, and come to the place where thou didst hide thyself when the business was in hand, and shalt remain by the stone Ezel. And I will shoot three arrows on the side thereof, as though I shot at a mark.

"And, behold, I will send a lad, saying, 'Go, find out the arrows.' If I expressly say unto the lad, 'Behold, the arrows are on this side of thee; take them;' then come thou: for there is peace to thee, and no hurt; as the Lord liveth.

"But if I say thus unto the young man, 'Behold, the arrows are beyond thee,' go thy way: for the Lord hath sent thee away.

"And as for this matter which thou and I have spoken of, behold, the
Lord be between thee and me for ever."

So David hid himself in the field: and when the new moon was come, the king sat him down to eat meat. And the king sat upon his seat, as at other times, even upon a seat by the wall: and Jonathan arose, and Abner sat by Saul's side, and David's place was empty.

Nevertheless Saul spake not anything that day: for he thought,
"Something hath befallen him, he is not clean; surely he is not clean."

And it came to pass on the morrow, which was the second day of the month, that David's place was empty: and Saul said unto Jonathan his son, "Wherefore cometh not the son of Jesse to meat, neither yesterday, nor to-day?"

And Jonathan answered Saul, "David earnestly asked leave of me to go to Bethlehem: and he said, 'Let me go, I pray thee; for our family hath a sacrifice in the city; and my brother, he hath commanded me to be there: and now, if I have found favour in thine eyes, let me get away, I pray thee, and see my brethren.' Therefore he cometh not unto the king's table."

Then Saul's anger was kindled against Jonathan, and he said unto him, "Thou son of the perverse rebellious woman, do not I know that thou hast chosen the son of Jesse to thine own confusion? For as long as the son of Jesse liveth upon the ground thou shalt not be established, nor thy kingdom. Wherefore now send and fetch him unto me, for he shall surely die."

And Jonathan answered Saul his father, and said unto him, "Wherefore shall he be slain? what hath he done?"

And Saul cast a javelin at him to smite him: whereby Jonathan knew that it was determined of his father to slay David. So Jonathan arose from the table in fierce anger, and did eat no meat the second day of the month: for he was grieved for David, because his father had done him shame.

And it came to pass in the morning that Jonathan went out into the field at the time appointed with David, and a little lad with him. And he said unto his lad, "Run, find out now the arrows which I shoot." And as the lad ran, he shot an arrow beyond him. And when the lad was come to the place of the arrow which Jonathan had shot, Jonathan cried after the lad, and said, "Is not the arrow beyond thee?"


And Jonathan cried after the lad, "Make speed, haste, stay not." And Jonathan's lad gathered up the arrows, and came to his master. But the lad knew not any thing: only Jonathan and David knew the matter.

And Jonathan gave his artillery unto his lad, and said unto him, "Go, carry them to the city."

And as soon as the lad was gone, David arose out of a place toward the south, and fell on his face to the ground, and bowed himself three times: and they kissed one another, and wept one with another, until David exceeded.

And Jonathan said to David, "Go in peace, forasmuch as we have sworn both of us in the name of the Lord, saying, 'The Lord be between me and thee, and between my seed and thy seed for ever.'"

And he arose and departed: and Jonathan went into the city.

And David abode in the wilderness in strong holds, and remained in a mountain in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God delivered him not into his hand.

And David saw that Saul was come out to seek his life: and David was in the wilderness of Ziph in a wood.

And Jonathan, Saul's son, arose, and went to David into the wood, and strengthened his hand in God. And he said unto him, "Fear not: for the hand of Saul my father shall not find thee; and thou shalt be king over Israel, and I shall be next unto thee; and that also Saul my father knoweth."

And they two made a covenant before the Lord: and David abode in the wood, and Jonathan went to his house.

Then Saul took three thousand chosen men out of Israel, and went to seek David and his men upon the rocks of the wild goats. And he came to the sheepcotes by the way, where was a cave; and Saul went in to cover his feet: and David and his men were hidden in the sides of the cave.

And the men of David said unto him, "Behold the day of which the Lord said unto thee, 'Behold, I will deliver thine enemy into thine hand, that thou mayest do to him as it shall seem good unto thee.'" Then David arose, and cut off the skirt of Saul's robe privily.

And it came to pass afterward, that David's heart smote him, because he had cut off Saul's skirt. And he said unto his men, "The Lord forbid that I should do this thing unto my master, the Lord's anointed, * stretch forth mine hand against him, seeing he is the anointed of the Lord."

So David stayed his servants with these words, and suffered them not to rise against Saul. But Saul rose up out of the cave, and went on his way.

David also arose afterward, and went out of the cave, and cried after
Saul, saying, "My lord the king."

And when Saul looked behind him, David stooped with his face to the earth, and bowed himself; and said, "Wherefore hearest thou men's words, saying, 'Behold, David seeketh thy hurt?'

"Behold, this day thine eyes have seen how that the Lord had delivered thee into mine hand in the cave: and some bade me kill thee: but mine eye spared thee; and I said, 'I will not put forth mine hand against my lord; for he is the Lord's anointed.'

"Moreover, my father, see, yea, see the skirt of thy robe in my hand: for in that I cut off the skirt of thy robe, and killed thee not, know thou and see that there is neither evil nor transgression in mine hand, and I have not sinned against thee; yet thou huntest my soul to take it.

"The Lord judge between me and thee, and the Lord avenge me of thee: but mine hand shall not be upon thee. As saith the proverb of the ancients, 'Wickedness proceedeth from the wicked: but mine hand shall not be upon thee.'

"After whom is the king of Israel come out? after whom dost thou pursue? after a dead dog, after a flea.

"The Lord therefore be judge, and judge between me and thee, and see, and plead my cause, and deliver me out of thine hand."

And it came to pass, when David had made an end of speaking these words unto Saul, that Saul said, "Is this thy voice, my son David?" And Saul lifted up his voice, and wept. And he said to David, "Thou art more righteous than I: for thou hast rewarded me good, whereas I have rewarded thee evil.

"And thou hast shewed this day how that thou hast dealt well with me: forasmuch as when the Lord had delivered me into thine hand, thou killedst me not.

"For if a man find his enemy, will he let him go well away? wherefore the Lord reward thee good for that thou hast done unto me this day.

"And now, behold, I know well that thou shalt surely be king, and that the kingdom of Israel shall be established in thine hand.

"Swear now therefore unto me by the Lord, that thou wilt not cut off my seed after me, and that thou wilt not destroy my name out of my father's house."

And David sware unto Saul, and Saul went home.

And it came to pass after many days that the Philistines gathered their armies together for warfare to fight with Israel, and they pitched in Shunem.

[Illustration: DAVID AND JONATHAN]

And Saul gathered all Israel together and they pitched in Gilboa.

And when Saul saw the host of the Philistines, he was afraid, and his heart greatly trembled. And when Saul enquired of the Lord, the Lord answered him not, neither by dreams, nor by prophets.

Now the Philistines fought against Israel and the men of Israel fled from before the Philistines and fell down slain in mount Gilboa. And the Philistines followed hard upon Saul and upon his sons, and they slew Jonathan and two other sons of Saul. And the battle went sore against Saul, and the archers hit him; and he was sore wounded of the archers.

Then said Saul unto his armour-bearer, "Draw thy sword, and thrust me through therewith; lest these Philistines come and thrust me through, and abuse me."

But his armour-bearer would not; for he was sore afraid. Therefore Saul took a sword, and fell upon it.

And when his armour-bearer saw that Saul was dead, he fell likewise upon his sword, and died with him. So Saul died, and his three sons, and his armour-bearer, and all his men, that same day together.

And it came to pass on the morrow, when the Philistines came to strip the slain, that they found Saul and his three sons fallen in mount Gilboa.

And they cut off his head, and stripped off his armour, and sent into the land of the Philistines round about, to publish it in the house of their idols, and among the people.

Now it came to pass on the third day after the death of Saul that, behold, a man came out of the camp from Saul with his clothes rent, and earth upon his head: and he came before David and fell to the earth and did obeisance.

And David said unto him, "From whence comest thou?"

And he said unto him, "Out of the camp of Israel am I escaped."

And David said unto him, "How went the matter? I pray thee, tell me."

And he answered, "The people are fled from the battle, and many of the people also are fallen and dead; and Saul and Jonathan his son are dead also."

And David said unto the young man that told him, "How knowest thou that
Saul and Jonathan his son be dead?"

And the young man that told him said, "As I happened by chance upon mount Gilboa, behold, Saul leaned upon his spear; and, lo, the chariots and horsemen followed hard after him. And when he looked behind him, he saw me, and called unto me. And I answered, 'Here am I.'

"And he said unto me, 'Who art thou?'

"And I answered him, 'I am an Amalekite.'

"He said unto me again, 'Stand, I pray thee, upon me, and slay me: for anguish is come upon me, because my life is yet whole in me.'

"So I stood upon him, and slew him, because I was sure that he could not live after that he was fallen: and I took the crown that was upon his head, and the bracelet that was on his arm, and have brought them hither unto my lord."

Then David took hold on his clothes, and rent them; and likewise all the men that were with him: and they mourned and wept, and fasted until even, for Saul, and for Jonathan his son, and for the people of the Lord, and for the house of Israel; because they were fallen by the sword.

And David said unto the young man that told him, "Whence art thou?"

And he answered, "I am the son of a stranger, an Amalekite."

And David said unto him, "How wast thou not afraid to stretch forth thine hand to destroy the Lord's anointed?"

And David called one of the young men and said, "Go near, and fall upon him." And he smote him that he died.

And David said unto him, "Thy blood be upon thy head; for thy mouth hath testified against thee saying, 'I have slain the Lord's anointed.'"

And David lamented with this lamentation over Saul and over Jonathan his son:

"The beauty of Israel is slain upon thy high places: how are the mighty fallen!

"Ye mountains of Gilboa, let there be no dew, neither let there be rain, upon you, nor fields of offerings: for there the shield of the mighty is vilely cast away, the shield of Saul, as though he had not been anointed with oil.

"From the blood of the slain, from the fat of the mighty, the bow of
Jonathan turned not back, and the sword of Saul returned not empty.

"Saul and Jonathan were lovely and pleasant in their lives, and in their death they were not divided: they were swifter than eagles, they were stronger than lions.

"Ye daughters of Israel, weep over Saul, who clothed you in scarlet, with other delights, who put on ornaments of gold upon your apparel.

"How are the mighty fallen in the midst of the battle! O Jonathan, thou wast slain in thine high places.

"I am distressed for thee, my brother Jonathan: very pleasant hast thou been unto me: thy love to me was wonderful, passing the love of women.

"How are the mighty fallen, and the weapons of war perished!"



Then came all the tribes of Israel to David unto Hebron and spake, saying, "Behold, we are thy bone and thy flesh. Also in time past, when Saul was king over us, thou wast he that leddest out and broughtest in Israel: and the Lord said to thee, 'Thou shalt feed my people Israel, and thou shalt be a captain over Israel.'"

So all the elders of Israel came to the king to Hebron; and king David made a league with them in Hebron before the Lord: and they anointed David king over Israel.

David was thirty years old when he began to reign and he reigned over Israel and Judah thirty and three years, and he had already reigned over Judah seven years and six months.

But when the Philistines heard that they bad anointed David king over Israel, all the Philistines came up to seek David; and David heard of it, and went down to the hold.

The Philistines also came and spread themselves in the valley of

And David enquired of the Lord, saying, "Shall I go up to the Philistines? wilt thou deliver them into mine hand?" And the Lord said unto David, "Go up: for I will doubtless deliver the Philistines into thine hand."

And David smote the Philistines and said, "The Lord hath broken forth upon mine enemies, as the breach of waters."

And there the Philistines left their images and David and his men burned them.

And the Philistines came up yet again, and spread themselves in the valley of Rephaim.

And when David enquired of the Lord, he said, "Thou shalt not go up; but fetch a compass behind them, and come upon them over against the mulberry trees. And let it be, when thou hearest the sound of a going in the tops of the mulberry trees, that then thou shalt bestir thyself; for then shall the Lord go out before thee, to smite the host of the Philistines."

And David did so, as the Lord had commanded him; and smote the
Philistines from Geba until they came to Gazer.

After David had conquered the Philistines he called unto him a servant of the house of Saul whose name was Ziba, and said, "Is there not yet any of the house of Saul, that I may shew the kindness of God unto him?"

And Ziba said unto the king, "Jonathan hath yet a son who is lame on his feet."

The king said unto him, "Where is he?".

And Ziba said unto the king, "Behold he is in the house of Machir."

Now the name of this son of Jonathan was Mephibosheth, and when he was come unto David he fell on his face, and did reverence.

And David said, "Mephibosheth!"

And he answered, "Behold thy servant."

And David said unto him, "Fear not: for I will surely shew thee kindness for Jonathan thy father's sake, and will restore thee all the land of Saul thy father; and thou shalt eat bread at my table continually."

And he bowed himself, and said, "What is thy servant, that thou shouldest look upon such a dead dog as I am?"

Then the king called to Ziba, Saul's servant, and said unto him, "I have given unto thy master's son all that pertained to Saul and to all his house. Thou therefore, and thy sons, and thy servants, shall till the land for him, and thou shalt bring in the fruits, that thy master's son may have food to eat: but Mephibosheth thy master's son shall eat bread alway at my table."

Now Ziba had fifteen sons and twenty servants. Then said Ziba unto the king, "According to all that my lord the king hath commanded his servant, so shall thy servant do."

"As for Mephibosheth," said the king, "he shall eat at my table, as one of the king's sons."

And Mephibosheth had a young son, whose name was Micha.

And all that dwelt in the house of Ziba were servants unto

So Mephibosheth dwelt in Jerusalem: for he did eat continually at the king's table; and was lame on both his feet.


Now Absalom, the favorite son of David, was wroth at his brother Amnon who had dealt wickedly with his sister. And at a sheep-shearing where Absalom had invited Amnon and all his other brothers, Absalom had commanded his servants, saying, "Mark ye now when Amnon's heart is merry with wine, and when I say unto you, 'Smite Amnon;' then kill him; fear not: have not I commanded you? Be courageous, and be valiant."

And the servants of Absalom did unto Amnon as Absalom had commanded, and David mourned for his son every day.

So Absalom fled and went to Geshur and was there three years. And the soul of David longed to go forth unto Absalom, for he loved him dearly. And the king sent for Joab, who had counselled the king to forgive, and said unto him, "Go ye and bring the young man Absalom again to me."

So Joab arose and went to Geshur, and brought Absalom to Jerusalem.

And the king said, "Let him turn to his own house, and let him not see my face."

So Absalom returned to his own house, and saw not the king's face.

But in all Israel there was none to be so much praised as Absalom for his beauty: from the sole of his feet even to the crown of his head there was no blemish in him. And when he polled his head, he weighed the hair of his head at two hundred shekels after the king's weight.

So Absalom dwelt two full years in Jerusalem, and saw not the king's face. Therefore Absalom sent for Joab, to have sent him to the king; but he would not come to him: and when he sent for him again the second time, he would not come.

Therefore he said unto his servants, "See, Joab's field is near mine, and he hath barley there; go and set it on fire." And Absalom's servants set the field on fire.

Then Joab arose, and came to Absalom unto his house, and said unto him,
"Wherefore have thy servants set my field on fire?"

And Absalom answered Joab, "Behold, I sent unto thee, bidding thee come hither, that I might send thee to the king, to say, 'Wherefore am I come from Geshur? it had been good for me to have been there still: now therefore let me see the king's face: and if there be any iniquity in me, let him kill me.'"

So Joab came to the king, and told him: and when he called for Absalom, he came to the king, and bowed himself on his face to the ground before the king: and the king kissed Absalom.

And it came to pass after this, that Absalom prepared him chariots and horses, and fifty men to run before him.

And Absalom rose up early, and stood beside the way of the gate: and it was so, that when any man that had a controversy came to the king for judgment, then Absalom called unto him, and said, "Of what city art thou?" And he said, "Thy servant is of one of the tribes of Israel."

And Absalom said unto him, "See, thy matters are good and right; but there is no man deputed of the king to hear thee."


Absalom said moreover, "Oh that I were made judge of the land, that every man which hath any suit or cause might come unto me, and I would do him justice."

And it was so, that when any man came nigh to him to do him obeisance, he put forth his hand, and took him, and kissed him.

And on this manner did Absalom to all Israel that came to the king for judgment: so Absalom stole the hearts of the men of Israel.

And there came a messenger to David, saying, "The hearts of the men of
Israel are after Absalom."

And David said unto all his servants that were with him at Jerusalem, "Arise, and let us flee; for we shall not else escape from Absalom: make speed to depart, lest he overtake us suddenly, and bring evil upon us, and smite the city with the edge of the sword."

And the king went forth, and all the people after him, and tarried in a place that was far off.

And David went up by the ascent of mount Olivet, and wept as he went up, and had his head covered, and he went barefoot.

And all the people that was with him covered every man his head, and they went up, weeping as they went up.

Then David arose, and all the people that were with him, and they passed over Jordan: by the morning light there lacked not one of them that was not gone over Jordan.

Then David came to Mahanaim. And Absalom passed over Jordan, he and all the men of Israel with him. So Israel and Absalom pitched their tents in the land of Gilead.

And it came to pass, when David had come unto Mahanaim that the people brought beds, and basins, and earthen vessels, and wheat, and barley, and flour, and parched corn, and beans, and lentiles, and parched pulse, and honey, and butter, and sheep, and cheese of kine, for David, and for the people that were with him, to eat: for they said, "The people are hungry, and weary, and thirsty, in the wilderness."

And David numbered the people that were with him, and set captains of thousands and captains of hundreds over them.

And David sent forth a third part of the people under the hand of Joab, and a third part under the hand of Abishai, and a third part under the hand of Ittai. And the king said unto the people, "I will surely go forth with you myself also."

But the people answered, "Thou shalt not go forth: for if we flee away, they will not care for us; neither if half of us die, will they care for us: but now thou art worth ten thousand of us: therefore now it is better that thou succour us out of the city." And the king said unto them, "What seemeth you best I will do." And the king stood by the gate side, and all the people came out by hundreds and by thousands.

And the king commanded Joab and Abishai and Ittai, saying, "Deal gently for my sake with the young man, even with Absalom." And all the people heard when the king gave all the captains charge concerning Absalom. So the people went out into the field against Israel; and the battle was in the wood of Ephraim; where the people of Israel were slain before the servants of David, and there was there a great slaughter that day of twenty thousand men. For the battle was there scattered over the face of all the country; and the wood devoured more people that day than the sword devoured.

And Absalom met the servants of David. And Absalom rode upon a mule, and the mule went under the thick boughs of a great oak, and his head caught hold of the oak, and he was taken up between the heaven and the earth; and the mule that was under him went away. And a certain man saw it, and told Joab, and said, "Behold, I saw Absalom hanged in an oak."

And Joab said unto the man that told him, "And, behold, thou sawest him, and why didst thou not smite him there to the ground? and I would have given thee ten shekels of silver, and a girdle."

And the man said unto Joab, "Though I should receive a thousand shekels of silver in mine hand, yet would I not put forth mine hand against the king's son: for in our hearing the king charged thee and Abishai and Ittai, saying, 'Beware that none touch the young man Absalom.'

"Otherwise I should have wrought falsehood against mine own life: for there is no matter hid from the king, and thou thyself wouldest have set thyself against me."

Then said Joab, "I may not tarry thus with thee." And he took three darts in his hand, and thrust them through the heart of Absalom, while he was yet alive in the midst of the oak.

And ten young men that bare Joab's armour compassed about and smote
Absalom, and slew him.

And Joab blew the trumpet, and the people returned from pursuing after
Israel: for Joab held back the people.

And they took Absalom, and cast him into a great pit in the wood, and laid a very great heap of stones upon him: and all Israel fled every one to his tent.

And David sat between the two gates: and the watchman went up to the roof over the gate unto the wall, and lifted up his eyes, and looked, and beheld a man running alone. And the watchman cried, and told the king. And the king said, "If he be alone, there is tidings in his mouth." And he came apace, and drew near, and said, "Tidings, my lord the king: for the Lord hath avenged thee this day of all them that rose up against thee."


And the king said unto Cushi, "Is the young man Absalom safe?" And Cushi answered, "The enemies of my lord the king, and all that rise against thee to do thee hurt, be as that young man is."

And the king was much moved, and went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept: and as he went, thus he said, "O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! would God I had died for thee, O Absalom, my son, my son!"

And it was told Joab, "Behold the king weepeth and mourneth for Absalom." And the victory that day was turned into mourning unto all the people: for the people heard say that day how the king was grieved for his son. And the people gat them by stealth that day into the city, as people being ashamed steal away when they flee in battle.

But the king covered his face, and the king cried with a loud voice, "O my son Absalom, O Absalom, my son, my son!"

* * * * *

And David spake unto the Lord the words of this song in the day that the Lord had delivered him out of the hand of all his enemies:

"The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; the God of my rock; in him will I trust: he is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my high tower, and my refuge, my saviour; thou savest me from violence.

"I will call on the Lord, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.

"When the waves of death compassed me, the floods of ungodly men made me afraid; the sorrows of hell compassed me about; the snares of death prevented me; in my distress I called upon the Lord and cried to my God: and he did hear my voice out of his temple, and my cry did enter into his ears.

"Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations of heaven moved and shook, because he was wroth. There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it.

"He bowed the heavens also, and came down; and darkness was under his feet.

"And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: and he was seen upon the wings of the wind.

"And he made darkness pavilions round about him, dark waters, and thick clouds of the skies.

"Through the brightness before him were coals of fire kindled.

"The LORD thundered from heaven, and the most High uttered his voice.

"And he sent out arrows, and scattered them; lightning, and discomfited them.

"And the channels of the sea appeared, the foundations of the world were discovered, at the rebuking of the LORD, at the blast of the breath of his nostrils.

"He sent from above, he took me; he drew me out of many waters; he delivered me from my strong enemy, and from them that hated me: for they were too strong for me.

"I was also upright before him, and have kept myself from mine iniquity.

"Therefore the LORD hath recompensed me according to my righteousness; according to my cleanness in his eye sight.

"With the merciful thou wilt shew thyself merciful, and with the upright man thou wilt shew thyself upright.

"With the pure thou wilt shew thyself pure; and with the forward thou wilt shew thyself unsavoury.

"And the afflicted people thou wilt save: but thine eyes are upon the haughty, that thou mayest bring them down."

Now the days of David drew nigh that he should die; and he charged
Solomon his son, saying:

"I go the way of all the earth: be thou strong therefore, and shew thyself a man; and keep the charge of the Lord thy God, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and his testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses, that thou mayest prosper in all that thou doest, whithersoever thou turnest thyself: that the Lord may continue his word which he spake concerning me, saying, 'If thy children take heed to their way, to walk before me in truth with all their heart and with all their soul, there shall not fail thee a man on the throne of Israel.'"

So David slept with his fathers and was buried in the city of David.

Then sat Solomon upon the throne of David his father; and his kingdom was established.

* * * * *

David was, as you have learned from the account of him you have just been reading, a poet and a singer and one of his beautiful songs is to be found near the close of this story of his life. We may imagine him singing this, and accompanying himself on the harp; touching the strings softly as he told that, "The sorrows of hell compassed me about; the snares of death prevented me"; but striking out loud sounding chords as he exultantly cried. "Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations of heaven moved and shook."

Does it seem at all strange to you that we should call this poetry? It has no rhyme, and it is not broken up, as are most poems, into lines of nearly equal length; but a poem it is, nevertheless. Hebrew poetry was quite different in some ways from modern poetry. It did not have rhymes, though it did have about it a certain musical quality which made it very suitable for chanting. Then, too, the words and the manner of treating subjects were different from those employed in prose, just as they are in our own poetry.

David in this song is praising God for making him victorious over his enemies. Let us look for a moment at the way in which he expresses himself, and see whether we can find out just where the beauty of this hymn of praise lies. In the first paragraph he applies to the Lord various titles—"my rock," "my shield," "my high tower." He means to say by this that God is strong enough to protect him and defend him, but is not his way of saying it more forceful?

A few lines down we have the words, "The waves of death compassed me." Does this not give you a vivid idea of the helplessness of David and his hopelessness? What he means is, "I was in constant danger of losing my life," but he puts this fact into impressive words that leave a distinct picture in our minds.

Still further on we read, "There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured." This strikes us as a very daring way of describing God, but it is also a forceful way. We get just the idea of the irresistibleness of God which David meant we should.

These are but a few of the striking descriptions of which David makes use in this song. You will find others in almost every paragraph.



NOTE.—It was said in the old legend that Percy, Earl of Northumberland, declared that he would hunt for three days on Scottish lands without asking leave from Earl Douglas, who either owned the soil or had control of it under the king. This ballad dates back probably to the time of James I, and is merely a modernized version of the old stories.

  God prosper long our noble king,
    Our lives and safeties all;
  A woful hunting once there did
    In Chevy-Chase befall.

  To drive the deer with hound and horn
    Earl Percy took his way;
  The child may rue that is unborn
    The hunting of that day.

  The stout Earl of Northumberland
    A vow to God did make,
  His pleasure in the Scottish woods
    Three summer days to take,—

  The chiefest harts in Chevy-Chase
    To kill and bear away.
  These tidings to Earl Douglas came,
    In Scotland where he lay;

  Who sent Earl Percy present word
    He would prevent his sport.
  The English earl, not fearing that,
    Did to the woods resort,

  With fifteen hundred bowmen bold,
    All chosen men of might,
  Who knew full well in time of need
    To aim their shafts aright.

  The gallant greyhounds swiftly ran
    To chase the fallow deer;
  On Monday they began to hunt
    When daylight did appear;

  And long before high noon they had
    A hundred fat bucks slain;
  Then, having dined, the drovers went
    To rouse the deer again.

  The bowmen mustered on the hills,
    Well able to endure;
  And all their rear, with special care,
    That day was guarded sure.

  The hounds ran swiftly through the woods
    The nimble deer to take,
  That with their cries the hills and dales
    An echo shrill did make.

  Lord Percy to the quarry went,
    To view the slaughtered deer;
  Quoth he, "Earl Douglas promisèd
    This day to meet me here;

  "But if I thought he would not come,
    No longer would I stay;"
  With that a brave young gentleman
    Thus to the earl did say:—

  "Lo, yonder doth Earl Douglas come,—
    His men in armor bright;
  Full twenty hundred Scottish spears
    All marching in our sight;

  "All men of pleasant Teviotdale,
    Fast by the river Tweed;"
  "Then cease your sports," Earl Percy said,
    "And take your bows with speed;

  "And now with me, my countrymen,
    Your courage forth advance;
  For never was there champion yet,
    In Scotland or in France,

  "That ever did on horseback come,
    But if my hap it were,
  I durst encounter man for man,
    With him to break a spear."

  Earl Douglas on his milk-white steed,
    Most like a baron bold,
  Rode foremost of his company,
    Whose armor shone like gold.

  "Show me," said he, "whose men you be,
    That hunt so boldly here,
  That, without my consent, do chase
    And kill my fallow deer."

  The first man that did answer make,
    Was noble Percy he—
  Who said, "We list not to declare,
    Nor show whose men we be:

  "Yet will we spend our dearest blood
    Thy chiefest harts to slay."
  Then Douglas swore a solemn oath,
    And thus in rage did say:

  "Ere thus I will out-bravèd be,
    One of us two shall die;
  I know thee well, an earl thou art,—
    Lord Percy, so am I.

  "But trust me, Percy, pity it were,
    And great offence, to kill
  Any of these our guiltless men,
    For they have done no ill.

  "Let you and me the battle try,
    And set our men aside."
  "Accursed be he," Earl Percy said,
    "By whom this is denied."

  Then stepped a gallant squire forth,
    Witherington was his name,
  Who said, "I would not have it told
    To Henry, our king, for shame,

  "That e'er my captain fought on foot,
    And I stood looking on.
  You two be earls," said Witherington,
    "And I a squire alone;

  I'll do the best that do I may,
    While I have power to stand;
  While I have power to wield my sword
    I'll fight with heart and hand."

  Our English archers bent their bows,—
    Their hearts were good and true;
  At the first flight of arrows sent,
    Full fourscore Scots they slew,

  Yet stays Earl Douglas on the bent,
    As chieftain stout and good;
  As valiant captain, all unmoved,
    The shock he firmly stood.

  His host he parted had in three,
    As leader ware and tried;
  And soon his spearmen on their foes
    Bore down on every side.

  Throughout the English archery
    They dealt full many a wound;
  But still our valiant Englishmen
    All firmly kept their ground.

  And throwing straight their bows away,
    They grasped their swords so bright;
  And now sharp blows, a heavy shower,
    On shields and helmets light.

  They closed full fast on every side,—
    No slackness there was found;
  And many a gallant gentleman
    Lay gasping on the ground.

  In truth, it was a grief to see
    How each one chose his spear,
  And how the blood out of their breasts
    Did gush like water clear.

  At last these two stout earls did meet;
    Like captains of great might,
  Like lions wode, they laid on lode,
    And made a cruel fight.

  They fought until they both did sweat,
    With swords of tempered steel,
  Until the blood, like drops of rain,
    They trickling down did feel.

  "Yield thee, Lord Percy," Douglas said,
    "In faith I will thee bring
  Where thou shalt high advancèd be
    By James, our Scottish king.

  "Thy ransom I will freely give,
    And this report of thee,—
  Thou art the most courageous knight
    That ever I did see."

  "No, Douglas," saith Earl Percy then,
    "Thy proffer I do scorn;
  I will not yield to any Scot
    That ever yet was born."

  With that there came an arrow keen
    Out of an English bow,
  Which struck Earl Douglas to the heart,—
    A deep and deadly blow;

  Who never spake more words than these:
    "Fight on, my merry men all;
  For why, my life is at an end;
    Lord Percy sees my fall."

  Then leaving life, Earl Percy took
    The dead man by the hand;
  And said, "Earl Douglas, for thy life
    Would I had lost my land.

  "In truth, my very heart doth bleed
    With sorrow for thy sake;
  For sure a more redoubted knight
    Mischance did never take."

  A knight amongst the Scots there was
    Who saw Earl Douglas die,
  Who straight in wrath did vow revenge
    Upon the Earl Percy.

  Sir Hugh Montgomery was he called,
    Who, with a spear full bright,
  Well mounted on a gallant steed,
    Ran fiercely through the fight;

  And past the English archers all,
    Without a dread or fear;
  And through Earl Percy's body then
    He thrust his hateful spear;

  With such vehement force and might
    He did his body gore,
  The staff ran through the other side
    A large cloth-yard and more.

  So thus did both these nobles die.
    Whose courage none could stain.
  An English archer then perceived
    The noble earl was slain.

  He had a bow bent in his hand,
    Made of a trusty tree;
  An arrow of a cloth-yard long
    To the hard head haled he.

  Against Sir Hugh Montgomery
    So right the shaft he set,
  The gray goose wing that was thereon
    In his heart's blood was wet.

  This fight did last from break of day
    Till setting of the sun;
  For when they rung the evening-bell
    The battle scarce was done.

  With stout Earl Percy there was slain
    Sir John of Egerton,
  Sir Robert Ratcliff, and Sir John,
    Sir James, that bold baron.

  And with Sir George and stout Sir James,
    Both knights of good account,
  Good Sir Ralph Raby there was slain,
    Whose prowess did surmount.

  For Witherington my heart is woe
    That ever he slain should be,
  For when his legs were hewn in two,
    He knelt and fought on his knee.

  And with Earl Douglas there was slain
    Sir Hugh Mountgomery,
  Sir Charles Murray, that from the field
    One foot would never flee.

  Sir Charles Murray of Ratcliff, too,—
    His sister's son was he;
  Sir David Lamb, so well esteemed,
    But saved he could not be.

  And the Lord Maxwell in like case
    Did with Earl Douglas die:
  Of twenty hundred Scottish spears,
    Scarce fifty-five did fly.

  Of fifteen hundred Englishmen,
    Went home but fifty-three;
  The rest in Chevy-Chase were slain,
    Under the greenwood tree.

  Next day did many widows come,
    Their husbands to bewail;
  They washed their wounds in brinish tears,
    But all would not prevail.

  Their bodies, bathed in purple blood,
    They bore with them away;
  They kissed them dead a thousand times,
    Ere they were clad in clay.

  The news was brought to Edinburgh,
    Where Scotland's king did reign,
  That brave Earl Douglas suddenly
    Was with an arrow slain:

  "O heavy news," King James did say;
    "Scotland can witness be
  I have not any captain more
    Of such account as he."

  Like tidings to King Henry came
    Within as short a space,
  That Percy of Northumberland
    Was slain in Chevy-Chase:

  "Now God be with him," said our King,
    "Since 'twill no better be;
  I trust I have within my realm
    Five hundred as good as he:

  "Yet shall not Scots or Scotland say
    But I will vengeance take;
  I'll be revengèd on them all
    For brave Earl Percy's sake."

  This vow full well the King performed
    After at Humbledown;
  In one day fifty knights were slain
    With lords of high renown;

  And of the rest, of small account,
    Did many hundreds die:
  Thus endeth the hunting of Chevy-Chase,
    Made by the Earl Percy.

  God save the king, and bless this land,
    With plenty, joy and peace;
  And grant, henceforth, that foul debate
   'Twixt noblemen may cease.

THE ATTACK ON THE CASTLE [Footnote: The Attack on the Castle is from Scott's novel of Ivanhoe.]


A moment of peril is often also a moment of open-hearted kindness and affection. We are thrown off our guard by the general agitation of our feelings, and betray the intensity of those which, at more tranquil periods, our prudence at least conceals, if it cannot altogether suppress them. In finding herself once more by the side of Ivanhoe, Rebecca was astonished at the keen sensation of pleasure which she experienced, even at a time when all around them both was danger, if not despair. As she felt his pulse, and inquired after his health, there was a softness in her touch and in her accents, implying a kinder interest than she would herself have been pleased to have voluntarily expressed. Her voice faltered and her hand trembled, and it was only the cold question of Ivanhoe, "Is it you, gentle maiden?" which recalled her to herself, and reminded her the sensations which she felt were not and could not be mutual. A sigh escaped, but it was scarce audible; and the questions which she asked the knight concerning his state of health were put in the tone of calm friendship. Ivanhoe answered her hastily that he was, in point of health, as well, and better, than he could have expected. "Thanks," he said, "dear Rebecca, to thy helpful skill."

"He calls me dear Rebecca," said the maiden to herself, "but it is in the cold and careless tone which ill suits the word. His war-horse, his hunting hound, are dearer to him than the despised Jewess!"

"My mind, gentle maiden," continued Ivanhoe, "is more disturbed by anxiety than my body with pain. From the speeches of these men who were my warders just now, I learn that I am a prisoner, and, if I judge aright of the loud hoarse voice which even now despatched them hence on some military duty, I am in the castle of Front-de-Boeuf. If so, how will this end, or how can I protect Rowena and my father?"

"He names not the Jew or Jewess," said Rebecca, internally; "yet what is our portion in him, and how justly am I punished by Heaven for letting my thoughts dwell upon him!" She hastened after this brief self-accusation to give Ivanhoe what information she could; but it amounted only to this, that the Templar Bois-Guilbert and the Baron Front-de-Boeuf were commanders within the castle; that it was beleaguered from without, but by whom she knew not.

The noise within the castle, occasioned by the defensive preparations, which had been considerable for some time, now increased into tenfold bustle and clamor. The heavy yet hasty step of the men-at-arms traversed the battlements, or resounded on the narrow and winding passages and stairs which led to the various bartizans [Footnote: A bartizan is a sort of small overhanging balcony, built for defense or for lookout.] and points of defense. The voices of the knights were heard, animating their followers, or directing means of defense, while their commands were often drowned in the clashing of armor, or the clamorous shouts of those whom they addressed. Tremendous as these sounds were, and yet more terrible from the awful event which they presaged, there was a sublimity mixed with them which Rebecca's high- toned mind could feel even in that moment of terror. Her eye kindled, although the blood fled from her cheeks; and there was a strong mixture of fear, and of a thrilling sense of the sublime, as she repeated, half-whispering to herself, half-speaking to her companion, the sacred text—"The quiver rattleth—the glittering spear and the shield—the noise of the captains and the shouting!"


But Ivanhoe was like the war-horse of that sublime passage, glowing with impatience at his inactivity, and with his ardent desire to mingle in the affray of which these sounds were the introduction. "If I could but drag myself," he said, "to yonder window, that I might see how this brave game is like to go! If I had but bow to shoot a shaft, or battle- axe to strike were it but a single blow for our deliverance! It is vain—it is vain—I am alike nerveless and weaponless."

"Fret not thyself, noble knight," answered Rebecca, "the sounds have ceased of a sudden; it may be they join not battle."

"Thou knowest naught of it," said Ivanhoe, impatiently; "this dead pause only shows that the men are at their posts on the walls and expecting an instant attack; what we have heard is but the distant muttering of the storm; it will burst anon in all its fury. Could I but reach yonder window!"

"Thou wilt but injure thyself by the attempt, noble knight," replied his attendant. Observing his solicitude, she added, "I myself will stand at the lattice, and describe as I can what passes without."

"You must not—you shall not!" exclaimed Ivanhoe. "Each lattice, each aperture, will soon be a mark for the archers; some random shaft—"

"It shall be welcome!" murmured Rebecca, as with firm pace she ascended two or three steps, which led to the window of which they spoke.

"Rebecca—dear Rebecca!" exclaimed Ivanhoe, "this is no maiden's pastime; do not expose thyself to wounds and death, and render me forever miserable for having given the occasion; at least, cover thyself with yonder ancient buckler, and show as little of your person at the lattice as may be."

Following with wonderful promptitude the directions of Ivanhoe, and availing herself of the protection of the large ancient shield, which she placed against the lower part of the window, Rebecca, with tolerable security to herself, could witness part of what was passing without the castle, and report to Ivanhoe the preparations which the assailants were making for the storm. Indeed, the situation which she thus obtained was peculiarly favorable for this purpose, because being placed on an angle of the main building, Rebecca could not only see what passed beyond the precincts of the castle, but also commanded a view of the outwork likely to be the first object of the meditated assault. It was an exterior fortification of no great height or strength, intended to protect the postern-gate, through which Cedric had been recently dismissed by Front-de-Boeuf. The castle moat divided this species of barbican [Footnote: A barbican is a tower or outwork built to defend the entry to a castle or fortification.] from the rest of the fortress, so that, in case of its being taken, it was easy to cut off the communication with the main building, by withdrawing the temporary bridge. In the outwork was a sallyport [Footnote: A sallyport is an underground passage from the outer to the inner fortifications.] corresponding to the postern of the castle, and the whole was surrounded by a strong palisade. Rebecca could observe, from the number of men placed for the defence of this post, that the besieged entertained apprehensions for its safety; and from the mustering of the assailants in a direction nearly opposite to the outwork, it seemed no less plain that it had been selected as a vulnerable point of attack.

These appearances she hastily communicated to Ivanhoe, and added, "The skirts of the wood seem lined with archers, although only a few are advanced from its dark shadow."

"Under what banner?" asked Ivanhoe.

"Under no ensign of war which I can observe," answered Rebecca.

"A singular novelty," muttered the knight, "to advance to storm such a castle without pennon or banner displayed! Seest thou who they be that act as leaders?"

"A knight, clad in sable armor, is the most conspicuous," said the Jewess; "he alone is armed from head to heel, and seems to assume the direction of all around him."

"What device does he bear on his shield?" replied Ivanhoe.

"Something resembling a bar of iron, and a padlock painted blue on the black shield."

"A fetterlock and shackle-bolt [Footnote: These are terms in heraldry. Ivanhoe means that, since he is a prisoner, fetters and shackles would be good device for his shield.] azure," said Ivanhoe; "I know not who may bear the device, but well I ween it might now be mine own. Canst thou not see the motto?"

"Scarce the device itself at this distance," replied Rebecca; "but when the sun glances fair upon his shield it shows as I tell you."

"Seem there no other leaders?" exclaimed the anxious inquirer.

"None of mark and distinction that I can behold from this station," said Rebecca; "but doubtless the other side of the castle is also assailed. They appear even now preparing to advance—God of Zion protect us! What a dreadful sight! Those who advance first bear huge shields and defences made of plank; the others follow, bending their bows as they come on. They raise their bows! God of Moses, forgive the creatures Thou hast made!"

Her description was here suddenly interrupted by the signal for assault, which was given by the blast of a shrill bugle, and at once answered by a flourish of the Norman trumpets from the battlements, which, mingled with the deep and hollow clang of the nakers (a species of kettledrum), retorted in notes of defiance the challenge of the enemy. The shouts of both parties augmented the fearful din, the assailants crying, "Saint George for merry England!" [Footnote: Saint George is the patron saint of England.] and the Normans answering them with loud cries of "En avant De Bracy! Beau-seant! 'Beau-seant! Front-de-Boeuf a la rescousse!" [Footnote: En avant De Bracy means Forward, De Bracy. Beau-seant is the name given to the black and white standard of the Knights Templars. The word was used as a battle cry. A la rescousse means To the rescue.] according to the war-cries of their different commanders.

It was not, however, by clamor that the contest was to be decided, and the desperate efforts of the assailants were met by an equally vigorous defence on the part of the besieged. The archers, trained by their woodland pastimes to the most effective use of the long-bow, shot, to use the appropriate phrase of the time, so "wholly together," that no point at which a defender could show the least part of his person escaped their cloth-yard shafts. [Footnote: Cloth-yard was the name given to an old measure used for cloth, which differed somewhat from the modern yard. A cloth-yard shaft was an arrow a yard long.] By this heavy discharge, which continued as thick and sharp as hail, while, notwithstanding, every arrow had its individual aim, and flew by scores together against each embrasure and opening in the parapets, as well as at every window where a defender either occasionally had post, or might be suspected to be stationed—by this sustained discharge, two or three of the garrison were slain and several others wounded. But confident in their armor of proof, and in the cover which their situation afforded, the followers of Front-de-Boeuf and his allies showed an obstinacy in defence proportioned to the fury of the attack, and replied with the discharge of their large cross-bows, as well as with their long-bows, slings, and other missile weapons, to the close and continued shower of arrows; and, as the assailants were necessarily but indifferently protected, did considerably more damage than they received at their hand. The whizzing of shafts and of missiles on both sides was only interrupted by the shouts which arose when either side inflicted or sustained some notable loss.

"And I must lie here like a bed-ridden monk," exclaimed Ivanhoe, "while the game that gives me freedom or death is played out by the hand of others! Look from the window once again, kind maiden, but beware that you are not marked by the archers beneath. Look out once more, and tell me if they yet advance to the storm."

With patient courage, strengthened by the interval which she had employed in mental devotion, Rebecca again took post at the lattice, sheltering herself, however, so as not to be visible from beneath.

"What dost thou see, Rebecca?" again demanded the wounded knight.

"Nothing but the cloud of arrows flying so thick as to dazzle mine eyes, and to hide the bowmen who shoot them."

"That cannot endure," said Ivanhoe; "if they press not right on to carry the castle by pure force of arms, the archery may avail but little against stone walls and bulwarks. Look for the Knight of the Fetterlock, fair Rebecca, and see how he bears himself; for as the leader is, so will his followers be."

"I see him not," said Rebecca.

"Foul craven!" exclaimed Ivanhoe; "does he blench from the helm when the wind blows highest?"

"He blenches not!—he blenches not!" said Rebecca, "I see him now, he leads a body of men close under the outer barrier of the barbican. They pull down the piles and palisades; they hew down the barriers with axes. His high black plume floats abroad over the throng, like a raven over the field of the slain. They have made a breach in the barriers— they rush in—they are thrust back! Front-de-Boeuf heads the defenders; I see his gigantic form above the press. They throng again to the breach, and the pass is disputed hand to hand, and man to man. God of Jacob! it is the meeting of two fierce tides—the conflict of two oceans moved by adverse winds!"

She turned her head from the lattice, as if unable longer to endure a sight so terrible.

"Look forth again, Rebecca," said Ivanhoe, mistaking the cause of her retiring; "the archery must in some degree have ceased, since they are now fighting hand to hand. Look again, there is now less danger."

Rebecca again looked forth, and almost immediately exclaimed, "Holy prophets of the law! Front-de-Boeuf and the Black Knight fight hand to hand on the breach, amid the roar of their followers, who watch the progress of the strife, Heaven strike with the cause of the oppressed and of the captive!" She then uttered a loud shriek, and exclaimed, "He is down!—he is down!"


"Who is down?" cried Ivanhoe; "for our dear Lady's sake, tell me which has fallen?"

"The Black Knight," answered Rebecca, faintly; then instantly again shouted with joyful eagerness—"But no—but no! the name of the Lord of Hosts be blessed! he is on foot again, and fights as if there were twenty men's strength in his single arm. His sword is broken—he snatches an axe from a yeoman—he presses Front-de-Boeuf with blow on blow. The giant stoops and totters like an oak under the steel of the woodman—he falls—he falls!"

"Front-de-Boeuf?" exclaimed Ivanhoe.

"Front-de-Boeuf," answered the Jewess. "His men rush to the rescue, headed by the haughty Templar; their united force compels the champion to pause. They drag Front-de-Boeuf within the walls."

"The assailants have won the barriers, have they not?" said Ivanhoe.

"They have—they have!" exclaimed Rebecca; and they press the besieged hard upon the outer wall; some plant ladders, some swarm like bees, and endeavor to ascend upon the shoulders of each other; down go stones, beams, and trunks of trees upon their heads, and as fast as they bear the wounded to the rear, fresh men supply their places in the assault. Great God! hast Thou given men Thine own image that it should be thus cruelly defaced by the hands of their brethren!"

"Think not of that," said Ivanhoe; "this is no time for such thoughts.
Who yield? Who push their way?"

"The ladders are thrown down," replied Rebecca, shuddering; "the soldiers lie grovelling under them like crushed reptiles. The besieged have the better."

"Saint George strike for us!" exclaimed the knight; "do the false yeomen give way?"

"No!" exclaimed Rebecca, "they bear themselves right yeomanly. The Black Knight approaches the postern with his huge axe; the thundering blows which he deals, you may hear them above all the din and shouts of the battle. Stones and beams are hailed down on the bold champion: he regards them no more than if they were thistle-down or feathers!"

"By Saint John of Acre," [Footnote: Saint John of Acre was the full name of the Syrian town usually known as Acre. During the Crusade which the Christians of Europe undertook to recover the Holy Land from the Saracens, Acre was one of the chief points of contest. It was held first by one party, then by the other. Owing to this importance, it was natural that its name should come to be used as an exclamation.] said Ivanhoe, raising himself joyfully on his couch, "methought there was but one man in England that might do such a deed!"

"The postern gate shakes," continued Rebecca—"it crashes—it is splintered by his blows—they rush in—the outwork is won. Oh God! they hurl the defenders from the battlements—they throw them into the moat. O men, if ye be indeed men, spare them that can resist no longer!"

"That ridge—the ridge which communicates with the castle—have they won that pass?" exclaimed Ivanhoe.

"No," replied Rebecca; "the Templar has destroyed the plank on which they crossed; few of the defenders escaped with him into the castle— the shrieks and cries which you hear tell the fate of the others. Alas! I see it is still more difficult to look upon victory than upon battle."

"What do they now, maiden?" said Ivanhoe; look forth yet again—this is no time to faint at bloodshed."

"It is over for the time," answered Rebecca; "our friends strengthen themselves within the outwork which they have mastered, and it affords them so good a shelter from the foemen's shot that the garrison only bestow a few bolts on it from interval to interval, as if rather to disquiet than effectually to injure them."

"Our friends," said Ivanhoe, "will surely not abandon an enterprise so gloriously begun and so happily attained. O no! I will put my faith in the good knight whose axe hath rent heart-of-oak and bars of iron. Singular," he again muttered to himself, "if there be two who can do a deed of such derring-do![Footnote: Derring-do is an old word for daring, or warlike deed] A fetterlock, and a shackle-bolt on a field sable—what may that mean? Seest thou nought else, Rebecca, by which the Black Knight may be distinguished?"

"Nothing," said the Jewess; "all about him is black as the wing of the night raven. Nothing can I spy that can mark him further; but having once seen him put forth his strength in battle, methinks I could know him again among a thousand warriors. He rushes to the fray as if he were summoned to a banquet. There is more than mere strength—there seems as if the whole soul and spirit of the champion were given to every blow which he deals upon his enemies. God assoilzie [Footnote: Assoilzie is an old word for absolve] him of the sin of bloodshed! It is fearful, yet magnificent, to behold how the arm and heart of one man can triumph over hundreds."

"Rebecca," said Ivanhoe, "thou hast painted a hero; surely they rest but to refresh their force, or to provide the means of crossing the moat. Under such a leader as thou hast spoken this knight to be, there are no craven fears, no cold-blooded delays, no yielding up a gallant emprize, since the difficulties which render it arduous render it also glorious. I swear by the honor of my house—I vow by the name of my bright lady-love, I would endure ten years' captivity to fight one day by that good knight's side in such a quarrel as this!"

"Alas!" said Rebecca, leaving her station at the window, and approaching the couch of the wounded knight, "this impatient yearning after action—this struggling with and repining at your present weakness, will not fail to injure your returning health. How couldst thou hope to inflict wounds on others, ere that be healed which thou thyself hast received?"

"Rebecca," he replied, "thou knowest not how impossible it is for one trained to actions of chivalry to remain passive as a priest, or a woman, when they are acting deeds of honor around him. The love of battle is the food upon which we live—the dust of the mêlée [Footnote: Mêlée is a French word meaning a hand-to-hand conflict.] is the breath of our nostrils! We live not—we wish not to live—longer than while we are victorious and renowned. Such, maiden, are the laws of chivalry to which we are sworn, and to which we offer all that we hold dear."

"Alas!" said the fair Jewess, "and what is it, valiant knight, save an offering of sacrifice to a demon of vain glory, and a passing through the fire to Moloch? [Footnote: Moloch was the fire-god of the ancient Ammonites, to whom human sacrifices were offered.] What remains to you as the prize of all the blood you have spilled, of all the travail and pain you have endured, of all the tears which your deeds have caused, when death hath broken the strong man's spear, and overtaken the speed of his war-horse?"

"What remains?" cried Ivanhoe. "Glory, maiden—glory! which gilds our sepulchre and embalms our name."

"Glory!" continued Rebecca; "alas! is the rusted nail which hangs as a hatchment over the champion's dim and mouldering tomb, is the defaced sculpture of the inscription which the ignorant monk can hardly read to the inquiring pilgrim—are these sufficient rewards for the sacrifice of every kindly affection, for a life spent miserably that ye may make others miserable? Or is there such virtue in the rude rhymes of a wandering bard, that domestic love, kindly affection, peace and happiness, are so wildly bartered, to become the hero of those ballads which vagabond minstrels sing to drunken churls over their evening ale?"

"By the soul of Hereward!" replied the knight, impatiently, "thou speakest, maiden, of thou knowest not what. Thou wouldst quench the pure light of chivalry, which alone distinguishes the noble from the base, the gentle knight from the churl and the savage; which rates our life far, far beneath the pitch of our honor, raises us victorious over pain, toil, and suffering, and teaches us to fear no evil but disgrace. Thou art no Christian, Rebecca; and to thee are unknown those high feelings which swell the bosom of a noble maiden when her lover hath done some deed of emprize which sanctions his flame. Chivalry! Why, maiden, she is the nurse of pure and high affection, the stay of the oppressed, the redresser of grievances, the curb of the power of the tyrant. Nobility were but an empty name without her, and liberty finds the best protection in her lance and her sword."

"I am, indeed," said Rebecca, "sprung from a race whose courage was distinguished in the defence of their own land, but who warred not, even while yet a nation, save at the command of the Deity, or in defending their country from oppression. The sound of the trumpet wakes Judah no longer, and her despised children are now but the unresisting victims of hostile and military oppression. Well hast thou spoken, Sir Knight: until the God of Jacob shall raise up for His chosen people a second Gideon, or a new Maccabeus, it ill beseemeth the Jewish damsel to speak of battle or of war."

The high-minded maiden concluded the argument in a tone of sorrow, which deeply expressed her sense of the degradation of her people, imbittered perhaps by the idea that Ivanhoe considered her as one not entitled to interfere in a case of honor, and incapable of entertaining or expressing sentiments of honor and generosity.

"How little he knows this bosom," she said, "to imagine that cowardice or meanness of soul must needs be its guests, because I have censured the fantastic chivalry. Would to Heaven that the shedding of mine own blood, drop by drop, could redeem the captivity of Judah! Nay, would to God it could avail to set free my father, and this his benefactor, from the chains of the oppressor. The proud Christian should then see whether the daughter of God's chosen people dared not to die as bravely as the finest Nazarene maiden, that boasts her descent from some petty chieftain of the rude and frozen north!"

She then looked toward the couch of the wounded knight.

"He sleeps," she said; "nature exhausted by suffrance, and the waste of spirits, his wearied frame embraces the first moment of temporary relaxation to sink into slumber."

She wrapped herself closely in her veil, and sat down at a distance from the couch of the wounded knight, with her back turned toward it, fortifying, or endeavoring to fortify, her mind against the impending evils.

During the interval of quiet which followed the first success of the besiegers, while the one party was preparing to pursue their advantage and the other to strengthen their means of defence, the Templar and De Bracy held brief counsel together in the hall of the castle.

"Where is Front-de-Boeuf?" said the latter, who had superintended the defence of the fortress on the other side; "men say he hath been slain."

"He lives," said the Templar, coolly—"Lives as yet; but had he worn the bull's head of which he bears the name, [Footnote: Front-de-Boeuf means Bull's Head.] and ten plates of iron to fence it withal, he must have gone down before yonder fatal axe. Yet a few hours, and Front-de- Boeuf is with his fathers—a powerful limb lopped off Prince John's enterprise." [Footnote: Prince John was scheming to usurp the throne of England while King Richard, his brother, was absent on one of the Crusades.]

"And a brave addition to the kingdom of Satan," said De Bracy; "this comes of reviling saints and angels, and ordering images of holy things and holy men to be flung down on the heads of these rascaille yeomen."

"Go to, thou art a fool," said the Templar; "thy superstition is upon a level with Front-de-Boeuf's want of faith; neither of you can render a reason for your belief or unbelief. Let us think of making good the castle. How fought these villain yeomen on thy side?"

"Like fiends incarnate," said De Bracy. "They swarmed close up to the walls, headed, as I think, by the knave who won the prize at the archery, for I knew his horn and baldric. Had I not been armed in proof, the villain had marked me down seven times with as little remorse as if I had been a buck in season. He told every rivet on my armor with a cloth-yard shaft, that rapped against my ribs with as little compunction as if my bones had been of iron. But that I wore a shirt of Spanish mail under my platecoat, I had been fairly sped."

"But you maintained your post?" said the Templar. "We lost the outwork on our part."

"That is a shrewd loss," said De Bracy; "the knaves will find cover there to assault the castle more closely, and may, if not well watched, gain some unguarded corner of a tower, or some forgotten window, and so break in upon us. Our numbers are too few for the defence of every point, and the men complain that they can nowhere show themselves, but they are the mark for as many arrows as a parish-butt on a holyday even. Front-de-Boeuf is dying too, so we shall receive no more aid from his bull's head and brutal strength. How think you, Sir Brian, were we not better make a virtue of necessity, and compound with the rogues by delivering up our prisoners?"

"How!" exclaimed the Templar; "deliver up our prisoners, and stand an object alike of ridicule and execration, as the doughty warriors who dared by a night attack to possess themselves of the persons of a party of defenceless travelers, yet could not make good a strong castle against a vagabond troop of outlaws, led by swineherds, jesters, and the very refuse of mankind? Shame on thy counsel, Maurice de Bracy! The ruins of this castle shall bury both my body and my shame, ere I consent to such base and dishonorable composition."

"Let us to the walls, then," said De Bracy, carelessly; "that man never breathed, be he Turk or Templar, who held life at lighter rate than I do. But I trust there is no dishonor in wishing I had here some two scores of my gallant troop of Free Companions? Oh, my brave lances! if ye knew but how hard your captain were this day bested, how soon should I see my banner at the head of your clump of spears! And how short while would these rabble villains stand to endure your encounter!"

"Wish for whom thou wilt," said the Templar, "but let us make what defence we can with the soldiers who remain. They are chiefly Front-de- Boeuf's followers, hated by the English for a thousand acts of insolence and oppression."

"The better," said De Bracy; "the rugged slaves will defend themselves to the last drop of their blood, ere they encounter the revenge of the peasants without. Let us up and be doing, then, Brian de Bois-Guilbert; and, live or die, thou shalt see Maurice de Bracy bear himself this day as a gentleman of blood and lineage."

"To the walls!" answered the Templar; and they both ascended the battlements to do all that skill could dictate, and manhood accomplish, in defence of the place. They readily agreed that the point of greatest danger was that opposite to the outwork of which the assailants had possessed themselves. The castle, indeed, was divided from that barbican by the moat, and it was impossible that the besiegers could assail the postern door, with which the outwork corresponded, without surmounting that obstacle; but it was the opinion both of the Templar and De Bracy that the besiegers, if governed by the same policy their leader had already displayed, would endeavor, by a formidable assault, to draw the chief part of the defenders' observation to this point, and take measures to avail themselves of every negligence which might take place in the defence elsewhere. To guard against such an evil, their numbers only permitted the knights to place sentinels from space to space along the walls in communication with each other, who might give the alarm whenever danger was threatened. Meanwhile, they agreed that De Bracy should command the defense of the postern, and the Templar should keep with him a score of men or thereabouts as a body of reserve, ready to hasten to any other point which might be suddenly threatened. The loss of the barbican had also this unfortunate effect, that notwithstanding the superior height of the castle walls, the besieged could not see from them, with the same precision as before, the operations of the enemy; for some straggling underwood approached so near the sallyport of the outwork that the assailants might introduce into it whatever force they thought proper, not only under cover, but even without the knowledge of the defenders. Utterly uncertain, therefore, upon what point the storm was to burst, De Bracy and his companion were under the necessity of providing against every possible contingency, and their followers, however brave, experienced the anxious dejection of mind incident to men inclosed by enemies who possessed the power of choosing their time and mode of attack.

Meanwhile, the lord of the beleaguered and endangered castle lay upon a bed of bodily pain and mental agony. He had not the usual resource of bigots in that superstitious period, most of whom were wont to atone for the crimes they were guilty of by liberality to the church, stupefying by this means their terrors by the idea of atonement and forgiveness; and although the refuge which success thus purchased was no more like to the peace of mind which follows on sincere repentance than the turbid stupefaction procured by opium resembles healthy and natural slumbers, it was still a state of mind preferable to the agonies of awakened remorse. But among the vices of Front-de-Boeuf, a hard and griping man, avarice was predominant; and he preferred setting church and churchmen at defiance to purchasing from them pardon and absolution at the price of treasure and of manors. Nor did the Templar, an infidel of another stamp, justly characterize his associate when he said Front-de-Boeuf could assign no cause for his unbelief and contempt for the established faith; for the baron would have alleged that the church sold her wares too dear, that the spiritual freedom which she put up to sale was only to be bought, like that of the chief captain of Jerusalem, "with a great sum," and Front-de-Boeuf preferred denying the virtue of the medicine to paying the expense of the physician.

But the moment had now arrived when earth and all his treasures were gliding from before his eyes, and when the savage baron's heart, though hard as a nether millstone, became appalled as he gazed forward into the waste darkness of futurity. The fever of his body aided the impatience and agony of his mind, and his death-bed exhibited a mixture of the newly-awakened feelings of horror combating with the fixed and inveterate obstinacy of his disposition—a fearful state of mind, only to be equalled in those tremendous regions where there are complaints without hope, remorse without repentance, a dreadful sense of present agony, and a presentiment that it cannot cease or be diminished!

"Where be these dog-priests now," growled the baron, "who set such price on their ghostly mummery? I have heard old men talk of prayer— prayer by their own voice—such need not to court or to bribe the false priest. But I—I dare not!"

"Lives Reginald Front-de-Boeuf," said a broken and shrill voice close by his bedside, "to say there is that which he dares not?"

The evil conscience and the shaken nerves of Front-de-Boeuf heard, in this strange interruption to his soliloquy, the voice of one of those demons who, as the superstition of the times believed, beset the beds of dying men, to distract their thoughts, and turn them from the meditations which concerned their eternal welfare.

He shuddered and drew himself together; but, instantly summoning up his wonted resolution, he exclaimed, "Who is there? what art thou, that darest to echo my words in a tone like that of the night raven? Come before my couch that I may see thee."

"I am thine evil angel, Reginald Front-de-Boeuf," replied the voice.

"Let me behold thee then in thy bodily shape, if thou be'st indeed a fiend," replied the dying knight; "think not that I will blench from thee. By the eternal dungeon, could I but grapple with these horrors that hover round me as I have done with mortal danger, Heaven or Hell should never say that I shrunk from the conflict!"

"Think on thy sins, Reginald Front-de-Boeuf," said the almost unearthly voice—"on rebellion, on rapine, on murder! Who stirred up the licentious John to war against his grayheaded father—against his generous brother?"

"Be thou fiend, priest, or devil," replied Front-de-Boeuf, "thou liest in thy throat! Not I stirred John to rebellion—not I alone; there were fifty knights and barons, the flower of the midland counties, better men never laid lance in rest. And must I answer for the fault done by fifty? False fiend, I defy thee! Depart, and haunt my couch no more. Let me die in peace if thou be mortal; if thou be demon, thy time is not yet come."

"In peace thou shalt NOT die," repeated the voice; "even in death shalt thou think on thy murders—on the groans which this castle has echoed— on the blood that is engrained in its floors!"

"Thou canst not shake me by thy petty malice," answered Front-de-Boeuf, with a ghastly and constrained laugh. "The infidel Jew—it was merit with Heaven to deal with him as I did, else wherefore are men canonized who dip their hands in the blood of Saracens? The Saxon porkers whom I have slain—they were the foes of my country, and of my lineage, and of my liege lord. Ho! ho! thou seest there is no crevice in my coat of plate. Art thou fled? art thou silenced?"

"No, foul parricide!" replied the voice; "think of thy father!—think of his death!—think of his banquet-room flooded with his gore, and that poured forth by the hand of a son!"

"Ha!" answered the Baron, after a long pause, "an thou knowest that, thou art indeed the Author of Evil, and as omniscient as the monks call thee! That secret I deemed locked in my own breast, and in that of one besides—the temptress, the partaker of my guilt. Go, leave me, fiend! and seek the Saxon witch Ulrica, who alone could tell thee what she and I alone witnessed. Go, I say, to her, who washed the wounds, and straighted the corpse, and gave to the slain man the outward show of one parted in time and in the course of nature. Go to her; she was my temptress, the foul provoker, the more foul rewarder, of the deed; let her, as well as I, taste of the tortures which anticipate Hell!"

"She already tastes them," said Ulrica, stepping before the couch of Front-de-Boeuf; "she hath long drunken of this cup, and its bitterness is now sweetened to see that thou dost partake it. Grind not thy teeth, Front-de-Boeuf—roll not thy eyes—clench not thy hand, nor shake it at me with that gesture of menace! The hand which, like that of thy renowned ancestor who gained thy name, could have broken with one stroke the skull of a mountain-bull, is now unnerved and powerless as mine own!"

"Vile, murderous hag!" replied Front-de-Boeuf—"detestable screech-owl! it is then thou who art come to exult over the ruins thou hast assisted to lay low?"

"Ay, Reginald Front-de-Boeuf," answered she, "It is Ulrica!—it is the daughter of the murdered Torquil Wolfganger!—it is the sister of his slaughtered sons! it is she who demands of thee, and of thy father's house, father and kindred, name and fame—all that she has lost by the name of Front-de-Boeuf! Think of my wrongs, Front-de-Boeuf, and answer me if I speak not truth. Thou hast been my evil angel, and I will be thine: I will dog thee till the very instant of dissolution!"

"Detestable fury!" exclaimed Front-de-Boeuf, "that moment shalt thou never witness. Ho! Giles, Clement, and Eustace! Saint Maur and Stephen! seize this damned witch, and hurl her from the battlements headlong; she has betrayed us to the Saxon! Ho! Saint Maur! Clement! false- hearted knaves, where tarry ye?"

"Call on them again, valiant baron," said the hag, with a smile of grisly mockery; "summon thy vassals around thee, doom them that loiter to the scourge and the dungeon. But know, mighty chief," she continued, suddenly changing her tone, "thou shalt have neither answer, nor aid, nor obedience at their hands. Listen to these horrid sounds," for the din of the recommenced assault and defence now rung fearfully loud from the battlements of the castle; "in that warcry is the downfall of thy house. The blood-cemented fabric of Front-de-Boeuf's power totters to the foundation, and before the foes he most despised! The Saxon, Reginald!—the scorned Saxon assails thy walls! Why liest thou here, like a worn-out hind, when the Saxon storms thy place of strength? Thou shalt die no soldier's death, but perish like the fox in his den, when the peasants have set fire to the cover around it."

"Hateful hag! thou liest!" exclaimed Front-de-Boeuf; "my followers bear them bravely—my walls are strong and high—my comrades in arms fear not a whole host of Saxons. The war-cry of the Templar and of the Free Companions rises high over the conflict! And by mine honor, when we kindle the blazing beacon for joy of our defence, it shall consume thee body and bones."

"Hold thy belief," replied Ulrica, "till the proof reach thee. But no!" she said, interrupting herself, "thou shalt know even now the doom which all thy power, strength and courage is unable to avoid, though it is prepared for thee by this feeble hand. Markest thou the smouldering and suffocating vapor which already eddies in sable folds through the chamber? Didst thou think it was but the darkening of thy bursting eyes, the difficulty of thy cumbered breathing? No! Front-de-Boeuf, there is another cause. Rememberest thou the magazine of fuel that is stored beneath these apartments?"

"Woman!" he exclaimed with fury, "thou hast not set fire to it? By heaven, thou hast, and the castle is in flames!"

"They are fast rising at least," said Ulrica, with frightful composure, "and a signal shall soon wave to warn the besiegers to press hard upon those who would extinguish them. Farewell, Front-de-Boeuf! But know, if it will give thee comfort to know it, that Ulrica is bound to the same dark coast with thyself, the companion of thy punishment as the companion of thy guilt. And now, parricide, farewell for ever! May each stone of this vaulted roof find a tongue to echo that title into thine ear!"

[Illustration: ULRICA LOCKS THE DOOR ]

So saying, she left the apartment; and Front-de-Boeuf could hear the crash of the ponderous keys as she locked and double-locked the door behind her, thus cutting off the most slender chance of escape. In the extremity of agony, he shouted upon his servants and allies—"Stephen and Saint Maur! Clement and Giles! I burn here unaided! To the rescue— to the rescue, brave Bois-Guilbert, valiant De Bracy! It is Front-de- Boeuf who calls! It is your master, ye traitor squires! Your ally—your brother in arms, ye perjured and faithless knights! All the curses due to traitors upon your recreant heads, do you abandon me to perish thus miserably! They hear me not—they cannot hear me—my voice is lost in the din of battle. The smoke rolls thicker and thicker, the fire has caught upon the floor below. O, for one draught of the air of heaven, were it to be purchased by instant annihilation! The red fire flashes through the thick smoke! the demon marches against me under the banner of his own element. Foul spirit, avoid! I go not with thee without my comrades—all, all are thine that garrison these walls. Thinkest thou Front-de-Boeuf will be singled out to go alone? No; the infidel Templar, De Bracy, Ulrica, the men who aided my enterprises, the dog Saxons and accursed Jews who are my prisoners—all, all shall attend me—a goodly fellowship as ever took the downward road."

But it were impious to trace any further the picture of the blasphemer and parricide's death-bed.

When the barbican was carried, the Sable Knight sent notice of the happy event to Locksley, the archer, requesting him at the same time to keep such a strict observation on the castle as might prevent the defenders from combining their force for a sudden sally, and recovering the outwork which they had lost. This the knight was chiefly desirous of avoiding, conscious that the men whom he led, being hasty and untrained volunteers, imperfectly armed and unaccustomed to discipline, must, upon any sudden attack, fight at great disadvantage with the veteran soldiers of the Norman knights, who were well provided with arms both defensive and offensive; and who, to match the zeal and high spirit of the besiegers, had all the confidence which arises from perfect discipline and the habitual use of weapons.

The knight employed the interval in causing to be constructed a sort of floating bridge, or long raft, by means of which he hoped to cross the moat, in despite of the resistance of the enemy. This was a work of some time, which the leaders the less regretted, as it gave Ulrica leisure to execute her plan of diversion in their favor, whatever that might be.

When the raft was completed, the Black Knight addressed the besiegers: "It avails not waiting here longer, my friends; the sun is descending to the west, and I have that upon my hands which will not permit me to tarry with you another day. Besides, it will be a marvel if the horsemen come not upon us from York, unless we speedily accomplish our purpose. Wherefore, one of ye go to Locksley, and bid him commence a discharge of arrows on the opposite side of the castle, and move forward as if about to assault it; and you, true English hearts, stand by me, and be ready to thrust the raft endlong over the moat whenever the postern on our side is thrown open. Follow me boldly across, and aid me to burst yon sallyport in the main wall of the castle. As many of you as like not this service, or are but ill armed to meet it, do you man the top of the outwork, draw your bowstrings to your ears, and mind you quell with your shot whatever shall appear to man the rampart. Noble Cedric, wilt thou take the direction of those which remain?"

"Not so!" said the Saxon; "lead I cannot; but may posterity curse me in my grave, if I follow not with the foremost wherever thou shalt point the way. The quarrel is mine, and well it becomes me to be in the van of the battle."

"Yet, bethink thee, noble Saxon," said the knight, "thou hast neither hauberk, nor corselet, nor aught but that light helmet, target, and sword."

"The better!" answered Cedric; "I shall be the lighter to climb these walls. And—forgive the boast, Sir Knight—thou shalt this day see the naked breast of a Saxon as boldly presented to the battle as ever ye beheld the steel corselet of a Norman."

"In the name of God, then," said the knight, "fling open the door, and launch the floating bridge."

The portal, which led from the inner wall of the barbican to the moat, and which corresponded with a sallyport in the main wall of the castle, was now suddenly opened; the temporary bridge was then thrust forward, and soon flashed in the waters, extending its length between the castle and outwork, and forming a slippery and precarious passage for two men abreast to cross the moat. Well aware of the importance of taking the foe by surprise, the Black Knight, closely followed by Cedric, threw himself upon the bridge, and reached the opposite side. Here he began to thunder with his axe upon the gate of the castle, protected in part from the shot and stones cast by the defenders by the ruins of the former drawbridge, which the Templar had demolished in his retreat from the barbican, leaving the counterpoise still attached to the upper part of the portal. The followers of the knight had no such shelter; two were instantly shot with cross-bow bolts, and two more fell into the moat; the others retreated back into the barbican.

The situation of Cedric and of the Black Knight was now truly dangerous, and would have been still more so but for the constancy of the archers in the barbican, who ceased not to shower their arrows upon the battlements, distracting the attention of those by whom they were manned, and thus affording a respite to their two chiefs from the storm of missiles which must otherwise have overwhelmed them. But their situation was eminently perilous, and was becoming more so with every moment.

"Shame on ye all!" cried De Bracy to the soldiers around him; "do ye call yourselves cross-bowmen, and let these two dogs keep their station under the walls of the castle? Heave over the coping stones from the battlement, an better may not be. Get pickaxe and levers, and down with that huge pinnacle!" pointing to a heavy piece of stone carved-work that projected from the parapet.

At this moment the besiegers caught sight of the red flag upon the angle of the tower, which Ulrica raised to show that she had fired the castle. The stout yeoman Locksley was the first who was aware of it, as he was hasting to the outwork, impatient to see the progress of the assault.

"Saint George!" he cried—"Merry Saint George for England! To the charge, bold yeomen! why leave ye the good knight and noble Cedric to storm the pass alone? Make in, brave yeomen!—the castle is ours, we have friends within. See yonder flag, it is the appointed signal— Torquilstone is ours! Think of honor—think of spoil! One effort, and the place is ours!"

With that he bent his good bow, and sent a shaft right through the breast of one of the men-at-arms, who, under De Bracy's direction, was loosening a fragment from one of the battlements to precipitate on the heads of Cedric and the Black Knight. A second soldier caught from the hands of the dying man the iron crow with which he heaved at and had loosened the stone pinnacle, when, receiving an arrow through his headpiece, he dropped from the battlements into the moat a dead man. The men-at-arms were daunted, for no armor seemed proof against the shot of this tremendous archer.

"Do you give ground, base knaves!" said De Bracy. "Give me the lever!"

And, snatching it up, he again assailed the loosened pinnacle, which was of weight enough, if thrown down, not only to have destroyed the remnant of the drawbridge which sheltered the two foremost assailants, but also to have sunk the rude float of planks over which they had crossed. All saw the danger, and the boldest avoided setting foot on the raft. Thrice did Locksley bend his shaft against De Bracy, and thrice did his arrow bound back from the knight's armor of proof.

"Curse on thy Spanish steel-coat!" said Locksley, "had English smith forged it, these arrows had gone through, as if it had been silk or sendal." He then began to call out. "Comrades! friends! noble Cedric! bear back and let the ruin fall."

His warning voice was unheard, for the din which the knight himself occasioned by his strokes upon the postern would have drowned twenty war-trumpets. The faithful Gurth indeed sprung forward on the planked bridge, to warn Cedric of his impending fate, or to share it with him. But his warning would have come too late; the massive pinnacle already tottered, and De Bracy, who still heaved at his task, would have accomplished it had not the voice of the Templar sounded close in his ear:

"All is lost, De Bracy; the castle burns."

"Thou art mad to say so!" replied the knight.

"It is all in a light flame on the western side. I have striven in vain to extinguish it."

With the stern coolness which formed the basis of his character, Brian de Bois-Guilbert communicated this hideous intelligence, which was not so calmly received by his astonished comrade.

"Saints of Paradise!" said De Bracy; "what is to be done?"

"Lead thy men down," said the Templar, "as if to a sally; throw the postern gate open. There are but two men who occupy the float, fling them into the moat, push across for the barbican. I will charge from the main gate, and attack the barbican on the outside; and if we can regain that post, be assured we shall defend ourselves until we are relieved, or at least till they grant us fair quarter."

"It is well thought upon," said De Bracy; "I will play my part.
Templar, thou wilt not fail me?"

"Hand and glove, I will not!" said Bois-Guilbert. "But haste thee, in the name of God!"

De Bracy hastily drew his men together, and rushed down to the postern gate, which he caused instantly to be thrown open. But scarce was this done ere the portentous strength of the Black Knight forced his way inward in despite of De Bracy and his followers. Two of the foremost instantly fell, and the rest gave way notwithstanding all their leader's efforts to stop them.

"Dogs!" said De Bracy, "will ye let two men win our only pass for safety?"

"He is the devil!" said a veteran man-at-arms, bearing back from the blows of their sable antagonist.

"And if he be the devil," replied De Bracy, "would you fly from him into the mouth of hell? The castle burns behind us, villains!—let despair give you courage, or let me forward! I will cope with this champion myself."

And well and chivalrous did De Bracy that day maintain the fame he had acquired in the civil wars of that dreadful period. The vaulted passage to which the postern gave entrance, and in which these two redoubted champions were now fighting hand to hand, rung with the furious blows which they dealt each other, De Bracy with his sword, the Black Knight with his ponderous axe.

At length the Norman received a blow which, though its force was partly parried by his shield, for otherwise never more would De Bracy have again moved limb, descended yet with such violence on his crest that he measured his length on the paved floor.

"Yield thee, De Bracy," said the Black Champion, stooping over him, and holding against the bars of his helmet the fatal poniard with which the knights despatched their enemies, and which was called the dagger of mercy—"Yield thee, Maurice De Bracy, rescue or no rescue, or thou art but a dead man."

"I will not yield," replied De Bracy, faintly, "to an unknown conqueror. Tell me thy name or work thy pleasure on me; it shall never be said that Maurice De Bracy was prisoner to a nameless churl."

The Black Knight whispered something into the ear of the vanquished.
[Footnote: The Black Knight is Richard the Lion-Hearted, king of
England, who has returned from the Crusades to reclaim his throne from
his usurping brother.]

"I yield me to be true prisoner, rescue or no rescue," answered the Norman, exchanging his tone of determined obstinacy for one of deep though sullen submission.

"Go to the barbican," said the victor, in a tone of authority, "and there wait my further orders."

"Yet first let me say," said De Bracy, "what it imports thee to know. Wilfred of Ivanhoe is wounded and a prisoner, and will perish in the burning castle without present help."

"Wilfred of Ivanhoe!" exclaimed the Black Knight—"prisoner, and perish! The life of every man in the castle shall answer it if a hair of his head be singed. Show me his chamber!"

"Ascend yonder winding stair," said De Bracy; "it leads to his apartment. Wilt thou not accept my guidance?" he added in a submissive voice.

"No. To the barbican, and there wait my orders, I trust thee not, De

During this combat and the brief conversation which ensued, Cedric, at the head of a body of men, had pushed across the bridge as soon as they saw the postern open, and drove back the dispirited and despairing followers of De Bracy, of whom some asked quarter, some offered vain resistance, and the greater part fled toward the courtyard.

De Bracy himself arose from the ground, and cast a sorrowful glance after his conqueror. "He trusts me not!" he repeated; "but have I deserved his trust?"

He then lifted his sword from the floor, took off his helmet in token of submission, and, going to the barbican, gave up his sword to Locksley, whom he met by the way.

As the fire augmented, symptoms of it became soon apparent in the chamber where Ivanhoe was watched and tended by the Jewess Rebecca. He had been awakened from his brief slumber by the noise of the battle; and his attendant, who had, at his anxious desire, again placed herself at the window to watch and report to him the fate of the attack, was for some time prevented from observing either by the increase of the smouldering and stifling vapor. At length the volumes of smoke which rolled into the apartment, the cries for water, which were heard even above the din of the battle, made them sensible of the progress of this new danger.

"The castle burns," said Rebecca—"it burns! What can we do to save ourselves?"

"Fly, Rebecca, and save thine own life," said Ivanhoe, "for no human aid can avail me."

"I had not found thee, Wilfred," said the Black Knight, who at that instant entered the apartment, "but for thy shouts."

And seizing upon Ivanhoe, he bore him with him to the postern, and having there delivered his burden to the care of two yeomen, again entered the castle to assist in the rescue of the other prisoners.

One turret was now in bright flames, which flashed out furiously from window and shot-hole. But in other parts the great thickness of the walls and the vaulted roofs of the apartments resisted the progress of the flames, and there the rage of man still triumphed, as the scarce more dreadful element held mastery elsewhere; for the besiegers pursued the defenders of the castle from chamber to chamber, and satiated in their blood the vengeance which had long animated them against the soldiers of the tyrant Front-de-Boeuf. Most of the garrison resisted to the uttermost; few of them asked quarter; none received it. The air was filled with groans and clashing of arms; the floors were slippery with the blood of despairing and expiring wretches.

Through this scene of confusion, Cedric rushed, in quest of Rowena, while the faithful Gurth, following him closely through the mêlée, neglected his own safety while he strove to avert the blows that were aimed at his master. The noble Saxon was so fortunate as to reach his ward's apartment just as she had abandoned all hope of safety, and, with a crucifix clasped in agony to her bosom, sat in expectation of instant death. He committed her to the charge of Gurth, to be conducted in safety to the barbican, the road to which was now cleared of the enemy, and not yet interrupted by the flames. This accomplished, the loyal Cedric hastened in quest of his friend Athelstane, determined, at every risk to himself, to save that last scion of Saxon royalty. But ere Cedric penetrated as far as the old hall In which he had himself been a prisoner, the inventive genius of Wamba the Jester had procured liberation for himself and his companion in adversity.

When the noise of the conflict announced that it was at the hottest, the Jester began to shout, with the utmost power of his lungs, "Saint George and the dragon! Bonny Saint George for merry England! The castle is won!" And these sounds he rendered yet more fearful by banging against each other two or three pieces of rusty armor which lay scattered around the hall.

A guard, which had been stationed in the outer or ante-room, and whose spirits were already in a state of alarm, took fright at Wamba's clamor, and, leaving the door open behind them, ran to tell the Templar that foemen had entered the old hall. Meantime the prisoners found no difficulty in making their escape into the ante-room, and from thence into the court of the castle, which was now the last scene of contest. Here sat the fierce Templar, mounted on horseback, surrounded by several of the garrison both on horse and foot, who had united their strength to that of this renowned leader, in order to secure the last chance of safety and retreat which remained to them. The drawbridge had been lowered by his orders, but the passage was beset; for the archers, who had hitherto only annoyed the castle on that side by their missiles, no sooner saw the flames breaking out, and the bridge lowered, than they thronged to the entrance, as well to prevent the escape of the garrison as to secure their own share of booty ere the castle should be burned down. On the other hand, a party of the besiegers, who had entered by the postern, were now issuing out into the courtyard, and attacking with fury the remnant of the defenders, who were thus assaulted on both sides at once. Animated, however, by despair, and supported by the example of their indomitable leader, the remaining soldiers of the castle fought with the utmost valor; and, being well armed, succeeded more than once in driving back the assailants, though much inferior in numbers.

Athelstane, who was slothful, but not cowardly, beheld the Templar.

"By the soul of Saint Edward," he said, "yonder over-proud knight shall die by my hand!"

"Think what you do!" cried Wamba; "hasty hand catches frog for fish. Ye may be leader, but I will be no follower; no bones of mine shall be broken. And you without armor too! Bethink you, silk bonnet never kept out steel blade. Nay, then, if wilful will to water, wilful must drench. Deus vobiscum [Footnote: Deus vobiscum means God be with you] most doughty Athelstane!" he concluded, loosening the hold which he had hitherto kept upon the Saxon's tunic.

To snatch a mace from the pavement, on which it lay beside one whose dying gasp had just relinquished it, to rush on the Templar's band, and to strike in quick succession to the right and left, levelling a warrior at each blow, was, for Athelstane's great strength, now animated with unusual fury, but the work of a single moment; he was soon within two yards of Bois-Guilbert, whom he defied in his loudest tone.

"Turn, false-hearted Templar! turn, limb of a band of murdering and hypocritical robbers!"

"Dog!" said the Templar, grinding his teeth, "I will teach thee to blaspheme the holy order of the Temple of Zion;" and with these words, half-wheeling his steed, he made a demi-courbette toward the Saxon, and rising in the stirrups, so as to take full advantage of the descent of the horse, he discharged a fearful blow upon the head of Athelstane.

"Well," said Wamba, "that silken bonnet keeps out no steel blade!" So trenchant was the Templar's weapon, that it shore asunder, as it had been a willow-twig, the tough and plaited handle of the mace, which the ill-fated Saxon reared to parry the blow, and, descending on his head, levelled him with the earth.

"Ha! Beau-seant!" exclaimed Bois-Guilbert, "thus be it to the maligners of the Temple knights!" Taking advantage of the dismay which was spread by the fall of Athelstane, and calling aloud, "Those who would save themselves, follow me!" he pushed across the drawbridge, dispersing the archers who would have intercepted them. He was followed by his Saracens, and some five or six men-at-arms, who had mounted their horses. The Templar's retreat was rendered perilous by the numbers of arrows shot off at him and his party; but this did not prevent him from galloping round to the barbican, of which, according to his previous plan, he supposed it possible De Bracy might have been in possession.

"De Bracy! De Bracy!" he shouted, "art thou there?"

"I am here," replied De Bracy, "but I am a prisoner."

"Can I rescue thee?" cried Bois-Guilbert.

"No," replied De Bracy; "I have rendered me, rescue or no rescue. I will be true prisoner. Save thyself; there are hawks abroad. Put the seas betwixt you and England; I dare not say more."

"Well," answered the Templar, "an thou wilt tarry there, remember I have redeemed word and glove. Be the hawks where they will, methinks the walls of the preceptory of Templestowe will be cover sufficient, and thither will I, like heron to her haunt."

Having thus spoken, he galloped off with his followers.

Those of the castle who had not gotten to horse, still continued to fight desperately with the besiegers, after the departure of the Templar, but rather in despair of quarter than that they entertained any hope of escape. The fire was spreading rapidly through all parts of the castle, when Ulrica, who had first kindled it, appeared on a turret, in the guise of one of the ancient furies, yelling forth a war- song, such as was of yore raised on the field of battle by the scalds of the yet heathen Saxons. Her long dishevelled gray hair flew back from her uncovered head; the inebriating delight of gratified vengeance contended in her eyes with the fire of insanity; and she brandished the distaff which she held in her hand, as if she had been one of the Fatal Sisters who spin and abridge the thread of human life.

The towering flames had now surmounted every obstruction, and rose to the evening skies one huge and burning beacon, seen far and wide through the adjacent country. Tower after tower crashed down, with blazing roof and rafter; and the combatants were driven from the courtyard. The vanquished, of whom very few remained, scattered and escaped into the neighboring wood. The victors, assembling in large bands, gazed with wonder, not unmixed with fear, upon the flames, in which their own ranks and arms glanced dusky red. The maniac figure of the Saxon Ulrica was for a long time visible on the lofty stand she had chosen, tossing her arms abroad with wild exultation, as if she reigned empress of the conflagration which she had raised. At length, with a terrific crash, the whole turret gave way, and she perished in the flames which had consumed her tyrant. An awful pause of horror silenced each murmur of the armed spectators, who, for the space of several minutes, stirred not a finger, save to sign the cross. The voice of Locksley was then heard—"Shout, yeomen! the den of tyrants is no more! Let each bring his spoil to our chosen place of rendezvous at the trysting-trees in the Harthill Walk; for there at break of day will we make just partition among our own bands, together with our worthy allies in this great deed of vengeance."


From HOMER'S ILIAD [Footnote: One of the greatest poems that has ever been written is the Iliad, an epic of great length dealing with the siege of Troy. The author is generally considered to be the old Greek poet and singer Homer. although some authorities believe that the poem was not all written by any one man.

The selection from the Iliad which is given here is from the translation by Alexander Pope. The passage has been abridged somewhat.]

NOTE.—Of all the mythical or half-mythical events which the ancient Greeks believed formed a part of their early history, there is none about which more stories have grown up than the Trojan War. According to the Greek belief, this struggle took place somewhere in the twelfth century B. C., but it now seems entirely likely that there was really no such contest, and that the stories told about it were but myths.

To the marriage of Peleus with the sea-nymph Thetis, all the gods were invited except Eris, or Discord, who, angered at the slight, determined to have vengeance. She took, therefore, a most beautiful golden apple on which were inscribed the words For The Fairest, and tossed it into the midst of the merry wedding party. Instantly a dispute arose, Juno, queen of the gods, Minerva, goddess of wisdom, and Venus, goddess of love and beauty, each claiming the fruit. Finally it was decided to leave the choice to an impartial judge, and Paris, son of Priam, the old king of Troy, was chosen.

Paris was utterly ignorant of the fact that he was the son of the king, having been banished from his home in his infancy because a prophecy had foretold that he should bring about the destruction of his native city. Rescued and brought up by a shepherd, he lived a simple shepherd's life on Mount Ida.

When the three radiant goddesses stood before him he was overcome with the difficulty of his task, and each of the three attempted to help him out by offering a bribe. Juno offered prosperity through life, Minerva wisdom and influence, but Venus, smiling slyly, promised him the love of the most beautiful woman in the world. Moved not by this bribe, but by the unsurpassable beauty of Venus, Paris awarded her the apple, and thus gained for himself and for his people the hatred of Juno and Minerva.

Later Paris was received back into his father's palace, and was sent on an embassy to the home of Menelaus, king of Sparta, in Greece. While at the home of Menelaus, Paris fell in love with Helen, the wife of his host, the most beautiful woman in the world, and persuaded her to return to Troy with him. Thoroughly roused, Menelaus sought the aid of the other Grecian kings in his attempt to get back his wife and punish the Trojans for the treachery of their prince, and a huge expedition under the command of Agamemnon, brother of Menelaus, set out for Troy. The Grecian army could make no immediate head against the Trojans, and for nine years it encamped outside the city of Troy, attempting to bring about its downfall. Battles and contests between single champions were frequent, but neither side seemed able to win any permanent victory.

Achilles was the bravest and strongest of the Grecian heroes, and all looked to him as the man through whom success must come. However, he became angered at Agamemnon and withdrew from the contest, and victory seemed about to fall to the Trojans. One day Patroclus, the friend and kinsman of Achilles, distressed at the Greek fortunes, removed of Achilles his armor, and at the head of Achilles's own men, went forth to do battle with the Trojans. He was slain by Hector, the son of Priam, the bravest of the Trojan defenders, and in anger at his friend's death, Achilles returned to the conflict. The battle was waged outside the city, and owing to the prowess of Achilles, matters looked bad for the Trojans.

Apollo, god of light, who favored the Trojans, took upon himself the form of a Trojan warrior, and while appearing to flee, drew Achilles after him, and thus allowed the Trojans to gain the shelter of the city walls. The selection from the Iliad given here begins just as Apollo throws off his disguise and reveals his identity to Achilles.

  Thus to their bulwarks, smit with panic fear,
  The herded Ilians* rush like driven deer:
  There safe they wipe the briny drops away,
  And drown in bowls the labors of the day.
  Close to the walls, advancing o'er the fields
  Beneath one roof of well-compacted shields,
  March, bending on, the Greeks' embodied powers,
  Far stretching in the shade of Trojan towers.
  Great Hector singly stay'd: chain'd down by fate
  There fix'd he stood before the Scaean gate;
  Still his bold arms determined to employ,
  The guardian still of long-defended Troy.

   *[Footnote: Ilium, or Ilion, was another name for Troy,
     and the Ilians were Trojans.]

    Apollo now to tired Achilles turns
  (The power confess'd in all his glory burns):
  "And what," he cries, "has Peleus'* son in view,
  With mortal speed a godhead to pursue?
  For not to thee to know the gods' is given,
  Unskill'd to trace the latent marks of heaven.
  What boots thee now, that Troy forsook the plain?
  Vain thy past labor, and thy present vain:
  Safe in their walls are now her troops bestow'd,
  While here thy frantic rage attacks a god."

*[Footnote: Achilles was the son of Peleus and the sea-nymph Thetis.]

    The chief incensed—"Too partial god of day!
  To check my conquests in the middle way:
  How few in Ilion else had refuge found!
  What gasping numbers now had bit the ground!
  Thou robb'st me of a glory justly mine,
  Powerful of godhead, and of fraud divine:
  Mean fame, alas! for one of heavenly strain,
  To cheat a mortal who repines in vain."

    Then to the city, terrible and strong,
  With high and haughty steps he tower'd along,
  So the proud courser, victor of the prize,
  To the near goal with double ardor flies.
  Him, as he blazing shot across the field,
  The careful eyes of Priam* first beheld
  Not half so dreadful rises to the sight
  Through the thick gloom of some tempestuous night,
  Orion's dog* (the year when autumn weighs),
  And o'er the feebler stars exerts his rays;
  Terrific glory! for his burning breath
  Taints the red air with fevers, plagues, and death,
  So flamed his fiery mail. Then wept the sage:
  He strikes his reverend head, now white with age;
  He lifts his wither'd arms; obtests* the skies;
  He calls his much-loved son with feeble cries:
  The son, resolved Achilles' force to dare,
  Full at the Scaean gates expects* the war;
  While the sad father on the rampart stands,
  And thus adjures him with extended hands:

   *[Footnote: Priam was the old king of Troy, father of Hector.]
   *[Footnote: Orion's dog means Sirius, the dog star, which was
     believed by the ancients to be a star of very bad omen.]
   *[Footnote: Obtests means entreats.]
   *[Footnote: Expects here means awaits.]

    "Ah stay not, stay not! guardless and alone;
  Hector! my loved, my dearest, bravest son!
  Mehinks already I behold thee slain,
  And stretch'd beneath that fury of the plain,
  Implacable Achilles! might'st thou be
  To all the gods no dearer than to me!
  Thee, vultures wild should scatter round the shore,
  And bloody dogs grow fiercer from thy gore.
  How many valiant sons I late enjoy'd,
  Valiant in vain! by thy cursed arm destroy'd,
  Or, worse than slaughter'd, sold in distant isles
  To shameful bondage, and unworthy toils,
  What sorrows then must their sad mother know,
  What anguish I? unutterable woe!
  Yet less that anguish, less to her, to me,
  Less to all Troy, if not deprived of thee.
  Yet shun Achilles! enter yet the wall;
  And spare thyself, thy father, spare us all!
  Save thy dear life; or, if a soul so brave
  Neglect that thought, thy dearer glory save.
  Pity, while yet I live, these silver hairs;
  While yet thy father feels the woes he bears,
  Yet cursed with sense! a wretch, whom in his rage
  (All trembling on the verge of helpless age)
  Great Jove has placed, sad spectacle of pain!
  The bitter dregs of fortune's cup to drain:
  To fill the scenes of death his closing eyes,
  And number all his days by miseries!
  Who dies in youth and vigor, dies the best,
  Struck through with wounds, all honest on the breast.
  But when the Fates* in fulness of their rage
  Spurn the hoar head of unresisting age,
  In dust the reverend lineaments deform,
  And pour to dogs the life-blood scarcely warm:
  This, this is misery! the last, the worst,
  That man can feel! man, fated to be cursed!"

   *[Footnote: The Fates were thought of by the ancient peoples as
     three old women, who spun the thread of human life, twisted it,
     and cut it off whenever they thought it was long enough.]

    He said, and acting what no words could say,
  Rent from his head the silver locks away.
  With him the mournful mother bears a part;
  Yet all her sorrow turn not Hector's heart.
  The zone unbraced, her bosom she display'd;
  And thus, fast-falling the salt tears, she said:

    "Have mercy on me, O my son! revere
  The words of age; attend a parent's prayer!
  If ever thee in these fond arms I press'd,
  Or still'd thy infant clamors at this breast;
  Ah, do not thus our helpless years forego,
  But, by our walls secured, repel the foe."

    So they,* while down their cheeks the torrents roll;
  But fix'd remains the purpose of his soul;
  Resolved he stands, and with a fiery glance
  Expects the hero's terrible advance.
  So, roll'd up in his den, the swelling snake
  Beholds the traveller approach the brake;
  When fed with noxious herbs his turgid veins
  Have gather'd half the poisons of the plains;
  He burns, he stiffens with collected ire,
  And his red eyeballs glare with living fire.*
  Beneath a turret, on his shield reclined,
  He stood, and question'd thus his mighty mind:

   *[Footnote: The word spoke is omitted here.]
   *[Footnote: Homer is famous for such comparisons as these. If you
     ever come across the term "Homeric simile," you may know that it
     means such a long, carefully worked out comparison as this.]

    "Where lies my way? to enter in the wall?
  Honor and shame the ungenerous thought recall:
  Shall proud Polydamas* before the gate
  Proclaim, his counsels are obeyed too late,
  Which timely follow'd but the former night
  What numbers had been saved by Hector's flight?
  That wise advice rejected with disdain,
  I feel my folly in my people slain.
  Methinks my suffering country's voice I hear,
  But most her worthless sons insult my ear,
  On my rash courage charge the chance of war,
  And blame those virtues which they cannot share.
  No—if I e'er return, return I must
  Glorious, my country's terror laid in dust:
  Or if I perish, let her see me fall
  In field at least, and fighting for her wall."

   *[Footnote: Polydamas, a Trojan hero and a friend of Hector's,
     had previously advised prudence and retreat within the wall.]

    Thus pondering, like a god the Greek drew nigh;
  His dreadful plumage nodded from on high;
  The Pelian* javelin, in his better hand,
  Shot trembling rays that glitter'd o'er the land;
  And on his breast the beamy splendor shone,
  Like Jove's own lightning, o'er the rising sun.
  As Hector sees, unusual terrors rise;
  Struck by some god, he fears, recedes, and flies.
  He leaves the gates, he leaves the wall behind:
  Achilles follows like the winged wind.
  Thus at the panting dove a falcon flies
  (The swiftest racer of the liquid skies),
  Just when he holds, or thinks he holds his prey,
  Obliquely wheeling through the aerial way,
  With open beak and shrilling cries he springs,
  And aims his claws, and shoots upon his wings:
  No less fore-right* the rapid chase they held,
  One urged by fury, one by fear impell'd:
  Now circling round the walls their course maintain,
  Where the high watch-tower overlooks the plain;
  Now where the fig-trees spread their umbrage broad,
  (A wider compass), smoke along the road.
  Next by Scamander's* double source they bound,
  Where two famed fountains burst the parted ground;
  This hot through scorching clefts is seen to rise,
  With exhalations streaming to the skies;
  That the green banks in summer's heat o'erflows,
  Like crystal clear, and cold as winter snows:
  Each gushing fount a marble cistern fills,
  Whose polished bed receives the falling rills;
  Where Trojan dames (ere yet alarm'd by Greece)
  Wash'd their fair garments in the days of peace.*
  By these they pass'd, one chasing, one in flight
  The mighty fled, pursued by stronger might:
  Swift was the course; no vulgar prize they play,
  No vulgar victim must reward the day:
  Such as in races crown the speedy strife:
  The prize contended was great Hector's life.

   *[Footnote: Pelian is an adjective formed from Peleus,
     the name of the father of Achilles.]
   *[Footnote: Fore-right means straight forward.]
   *[Footnote: The Scamander was a famous river that flowed near the
     city of Troy. According to the Iliad, its source was two springs,
     one a cold and one a hot spring.]
   *[Footnote: It was not, in these very ancient times, thought beneath
     the dignity of even a princess to wash her linen in some clear river
     or spring.]

    As when some hero's funerals are decreed
  In grateful honor of the mighty dead;*
  Where high rewards the vigorous youth inflame
  (Some golden tripod, or some lovely dame)
  The panting coursers swiftly turn the goal,
  And with them turns the raised spectator's soul:
  Thus three times round the Trojan wall they fly.
  The gazing gods lean forward from the sky.*

   *[Footnote: The favorite way, among the ancients, of doing honor to
     a man after his death was to hold a sort of a funeral festival,
     where contests in running, wrestling, boxing, and other feats of
     strength and skill were held.]
   *[Footnote: The gods play a very important part in the Iliad.
     Sometimes, as here, they simply watch the struggle from their home
     above Olympus; sometimes, as in the first lines of this selection,
     they actually descend to the battlefield and take part in the

    As through the forest, o'er the vale and lawn,
  The well-breath'd beagle drives the flying fawn,
  In vain he tries the covert of the brakes,
  Or deep beneath the trembling thicket shakes;
  Sure of the vapor* in the tainted dews,
  The certain hound his various maze pursues.
  Thus step by step, where'er the Trojan wheel'd,
  There swift Achilles compass'd round the field.
  Oft as to reach the Dardan* gates he bends,
  And hopes the assistance of his pitying friends,
  (Whose showering arrows, as he coursed below,
  From the high turrets might oppress the foe),
  So oft Achilles turns him to the plain:
  He eyes the city, but he eyes in vain.
  As men in slumbers seem with speedy pace,
  One to pursue, and one to lead the chase,
  Their sinking limbs the fancied course forsake,
  Nor this can fly, nor that can overtake;
  No less the laboring heroes pant and strain:
  While that but flies, and this pursues in vain.

   *[Footnote: Vapor here means scent.]
   *[Footnote: Dardan is an old word for Trojan.]

    What god, O Muse,* assisted Hector's force
  With fate itself so long to hold the course?
  Phoebus* it was; who, in his latest hour,
  Endued his knees with strength, his nerves with power.
  And great Achilles, lest some Greek's advance
  Should snatch the glory from his lifted lance,
  Sign'd to the troops to yield his foe the way,
  And leave untouch'd the honors of the day.

   *[Footnote: The Muses were nine sister goddesses who inspired poetry
     and music. No ancient Greek poet ever undertook to write without
     first seeking the aid of the Muse who presided over the particular
     kind of poetry that he was writing. Homer here addresses Calliope,
     the Muse of epic poetry.]
   *[Footnote: Phoebus is Apollo, whom at the opening of this selection
     we found aiding Hector by misleading Achilles.]

    Jove* lifts the golden balances, that show
  The fates of mortal men, and things below:
  Here each contending hero's lot he tries,
  And weighs, with equal hand, their destinies.
  Low sinks the scale surcharged with Hector's fate;
  Heavy with death it sinks, and hell receives the weight.

*[Footnote: Jove, or Jupiter, was the king of gods and men.]

    Then Phoebus left him. Fierce Minerva* flies
  To stern Pelides,* and triumphing, cries:
  "O loved of Jove! this day our labors cease,
  And conquest blazes with full beams on Greece.
  Great Hector falls; that Hector famed so far,
  Drunk with renown, insatiable of war,
  Falls by thy hand, and mine! nor force, nor flight,
  Shall more avail him, nor his god of light.*
  See, where in vain he supplicates above,
  Roll'd at the feet of unrelenting Jove;
  Rest here: myself will lead the Trojan on,
  And urge to meet the fate he cannot shun."

   *[Footnote: Minerva, goddess of wisdom, was the special protector of
     the Greeks. Throughout the struggle she was anxious to take part
     against the Trojans, but much of the time Jupiter would not let her
     fight; he allowed her merely to advise.]
   *[Footnote: The ending—ides means son of. Thus Pelides means
     son of Peleus.]
   *[Footnote: The god of light was Apollo.]

    Her voice divine the chief with joyful mind
  Obey'd; and rested, on his lance reclined,
  While like Deïphobus* the martial dame
  (Her face, her gesture, and her arms the same),
  In show and aid, by hapless Hector's side
  Approach'd, and greets him thus with voice belied:

   *[Footnote: Deïphobus was one of the brothers of Hector. Minerva
     assumes his form, and deceives Hector into thinking that his
     brother has come to aid him.]

    "Too long, O Hector! have I borne the sight
  Of this distress, and sorrow'd in thy flight:
  It fits us now a noble stand to make,
  And here, as brothers, equal fates partake."

   Then he: "O prince! allied in blood and fame,
  Dearer than all that own a brother's name;
  Of all that Hecuba* to Priam bore,
  Long tried, long loved: much loved, but honor'd more!
  Since you, of all our numerous race alone
  Defend my life, regardless of your own."

*[Footnote: Hecuba was the name of Hector's mother.]

    Again the goddess:* "Much my father's prayer,
  And much my mother's, press'd me to forbear:
  My friends embraced my knees, adjured my stay,
  But stronger love impell'd, and I obey.
  Come then, the glorious conflict let us try,
  Let the steel sparkle, and the javelin fly;
  Or let us stretch Achilles on the field,
  Or to his arm our bloody trophies yield."

*[Footnote: Spoke, or said, is understood here.]

    Fraudful she said; then swiftly march'd before:
  The Dardan hero shuns his foe no more.
  Sternly they met. The silence Hector broke:
  His dreadful plumage nodded as he spoke;

    "Enough, O son of Peleus! Troy has view'd
  Her walls thrice circled, and her chief pursued
  But now some god within me bids me try
  Thine, or my fate: I kill thee, or I die.
  Yet on the verge of battle let us stay,
  And for a moment's space suspend the day;
  Let Heaven's high powers be call'd to arbitrate
  The just conditions of this stern debate
  (Eternal witnesses of all below,
  And faithful guardians of the treasured vow)!
  To them I swear; if, victor in the strife,
  Jove by these hands shall shed thy noble life,
  No vile dishonor shall thy corse pursue;
  Stripp'd of its arms alone (the conqueror's due)
  The rest to Greece uninjured I'll restore:
  Now plight thy mutual oath, I ask no more."*

*[Footnote: It meant more to an ancient Greek to have his body given up to his family, that it might be buried with proper rite's, than it does to a modern soldier, for the Greeks believed that the soul could not find rest until the body was properly buried. This makes the refusal of Achilles to agree to Hector's request seem all the more cruel.]

    "Talk not of oaths" (the dreadful chief replies,
  While anger flash'd from his disdainful eyes),
  "Detested as thou art, and ought to be,
  Nor oath nor pact Achilles plights with thee:
  Such pacts as lambs and rabid wolves combine,
  Such leagues as men and furious lions join,
  To such I call the gods! one constant state
  Of lasting rancor and eternal hate:

  No thought but rage, and never-ceasing strife
  Till death extinguish rage, and thought, and life.
  Rouse then my forces this important hour,
  Collect thy soul, and call forth all thy power.
  No further subterfuge, no further chance;
  Tis Pallas,* Pallas gives thee to my lance.
  Each Grecian ghost, by thee deprived of breath,
  Now hovers round, and calls thee to thy death."

*[Footnote: Pallas was another name for Minerva.]

    He spoke, and launch'd his javelin at the foe;
  But Hector shunn'd the meditated blow:
  He stoop'd, while o'er his head the flying spear,
  Sang innocent, and spent its force in air.
  Minerva watch'd it falling on the land,
  Then drew, and gave to great Achilles' hand,
  Unseen of Hector, who, elate with joy,
  Now shakes his lance, and braves the dread of Troy.

    "The life you boasted to that javelin given,
  Prince! you have miss'd. My fate depends on Heaven.
  To thee, presumptuous as thou art, unknown,
  Or* what must prove my fortune, or thy own.
  Boasting is but an art, our fears to blind,
  And with false terrors sink another's mind.
  But know, whatever fate I am to try,
  By no dishonest wound shall Hector die.
  I shall not fall a fugitive at least,
  My soul shall bravely issue from my breast.
  But first, try thou my arm; and may this dart
  End all my country's woes, deep buried in thy heart."

*[Footnote: Or is here used instead of either.]

    The weapon flew, its course unerring held,
  Unerring, but the heavenly* shield repell'd
  The mortal dart; resulting with a bound
  From off the ringing orb it struck the ground.
  Hector beheld his javelin fall in vain,
  Nor other lance, nor other hope remain;
  He calls Deïphobus, demands a spear—
  In vain, for no Deïphobus was there.
  All comfortless he stands: then, with a sigh:
  "'Tis so—Heaven wills it, and my hour is nigh!
  I deem'd Deïphobus had heard my call,
  But he secure lies guarded in the wall.
  A god deceived me: Pallas, 'twas thy deed,
  Death and black fate approach; 'tis I must bleed.
  No refuge now, no succor from above.
  Great Jove deserts me, and the son of Jove,*
  Propitious once, and kind! Then welcome fate!
  'Tis true I perish, yet I perish great:
  Yet in a mighty deed I shall expire,
  Let future ages hear it, and admire!"

   *[Footnote: The armor of Achilles had been made for him by Vulcan,
     god of fire.]
   *[Footnote: This reference is to Apollo.]


    Fierce, at the word, his weighty sword he drew,
  And, all collected, on Achilles flew.
  So Jove's bold bird,* high balanced in the air,
  Stoops from the clouds to truss the quivering hare.
  Nor less Achilles his fierce soul prepares:
  Before his breast the flaming shield he bears
  Refulgent orb! above his fourfold cone
  The gilded horse-hair sparkled in the sun,
  Nodding at every step (Vulcanian frame!):
  And as he moved, his figure seem'd on flame.
  As radiant Hesper* shines with keener light,
  Far-beaming o'er the silver host of night,
  When all the starry train emblaze the sphere:
  So shone the point of great Achilles' spear.
  In his right hand he waves the weapon round,
  Eyes the whole man, and meditates the wound;
  But the rich mail Patroclus* lately wore
  Securely cased the warrior's body o'er.
  One space at length he spies, to let in fate,
  Where 'twixt the neck and throat the jointed plate
  Gave entrance: through that penetrable part
  Furious he drove the well-directed dart:
  Nor pierced the windpipe yet, nor took the power
  Of speech, unhappy! from thy dying hour.
  Prone on the field the bleeding warrior lies,
  While, thus triumphing, stern Achilles cries:

   *[Footnote: The eagle was sacred to Jove.]
   *[Footnote: Hesper was the old name for Venus, the evening star,
     the brightest of the planets.]
   *[Footnote: Patroclus was the friend of Achilles, whom Hector had
     killed. Hector had, after the usual custom, taken possession of
     the armor of Patroclus, which had originally belonged to Achilles.]

    "At last is Hector stretch'd upon the plain,
  Who fear'd no vengeance for Patroclus slain:
  Then, prince! you should have fear'd what now you feel;
  Achilles absent was Achilles still:
  Yet a short space the great avenger stayed,
  Then low in dust thy strength and glory laid.
  Peaceful he sleeps, with all our rites adorn'd,
  Forever honor'd, and forever mourn'd:
  While cast to all the rage of hostile power,
  Thee birds shall mangle, and the dogs' devour."

    Then Hector, fainting at the approach of death:
  By thy own soul! by those who gave thee breath!
  By all the sacred prevalence of prayer;
  Oh, leave me not for Grecian dogs to tear!
  The common rites of sepulture bestow,
  To soothe a father's and a mother's woe:
  Yet their large gifts procure an urn at least,
  And Hector's ashes in his county rest."

    "No, wretch accursed!" relentless he replies
  (Flames, as he spoke, shot flashing from his eyes);
  "Not those who gave me breath should bid me spare,
  For all the sacred prevalence of prayer,
  Would I myself the bloody banquet join!
  So—to the dogs that carcase I resign.
  Should Troy, to bribe me, bring forth all her store,
  And giving thousands, offer thousands more;
  Should Dardan Priam, and his weeping dame,
  Drain their whole realm to buy one funeral flame:
  Their Hector on the pile they should not see.
  Nor rob the vultures of one limb of thee."

    Then thus the chief his dying accents drew:
  "Thy rage, implacable! too well I knew:
  The Furies* that relentless breast have steel'd,
  And cursed thee with a heart that cannot yield.
  Yet think, a day will come, when fate's decree
  And angry gods shall wreak this wrong on thee;
  Phoebus and Paris shall avenge my fate,
  And stretch thee here before the Scaean gate."

   *[Footnote: The Furies were three hideous sisters who sometimes
     drove people mad with rage and remorse.]

    He ceased. The Fates suppress'd his laboring breath,
  And his eyes stiffen'd at the hand of death;
  To the dark realm the spirit wings its way
  (The manly body left a load of clay),
  And plaintive glides along the dreary coast,
  A naked, wandering, melancholy ghost!

    Achilles, musing as he roll'd his eyes
  O'er the dead hero, thus unheard, replies.
  "Die thou the first! When Jove and heaven ordain,
  I follow thee."—He said, and stripp'd the slain.
  Then forcing backward from the gaping wound
  The reeking javelin, cast it on the ground.
  The thronging Greeks behold with wondering eyes
  His manly beauty and superior size;
  While some, ignobler, the great dead deface
  With wounds ungenerous, or with taunts disgrace.

    "How changed that Hector, who like Jove of late
  Sent lightning on our fleets, and scatter'd fate!"

    High o'er the slain the great Achilles stands,
  Begirt with heroes and surrounding bands;
  And thus aloud, while all the host attends:
  "Princes and leaders! countrymen and friends!
  Since now at length the powerful will of heaven
  The dire destroyer to our arm has given,
  Is not Troy fallen already? Haste, ye powers!
  See, if already their deserted towers
  Are left unmann'd; or if they yet retain
  The souls of heroes, their great Hector slain.
  But what is Troy, or glory what to me?
  Or why reflects my mind on aught but thee,
  Divine Patroclus! Death hath seal'd his eyes;
  Unwept, unhonor'd, uninterr'd he lies!
  Can his dear image from my soul depart,
  Long as the vital spirit moves my heart?
  If in the melancholy shades below,
  The flames of friends and lovers cease to glow,
  Yet mine shall sacred last; mine, undecay'd,
  Burn on through death, and animate my shade.
  Meanwhile, ye sons of Greece, in triumph bring
  The corpse of Hector, and your paeans sing.
  Be this the song, slow-moving toward the shore,
  Hector is dead, and Ilion is no more."

    Then his fell soul a thought of vengeance bred
  (Unworthy of himself, and of the dead);
  The nervous* ancles bored, his feet he bound
  With thongs inserted through the double wound;
  These fix'd up high behind the rolling wain,
  His graceful head was trail'd along the plain.
  Proud on his car the insulting victor stood,
  And bore aloft his arms, distilling blood.
  He smites the steeds; the rapid chariot flies;
  The sudden clouds of circling dust arise.
  Now lost is all that formidable air;
  The face divine, and long-descending hair,
  Purple the ground, and streak the sable sand;
  Deform'd, dishonor'd, in his native land,
  Given to the rage of an insulting throng,
  And, in his parents' sight, now dragg'd along!

*[Footnote: Nervous here means strong, sinewy.]

    The mother first beheld with sad survey;
  She rent her tresses, venerable gray,
  And cast, far off, the regal veils away.
  With piercing shrieks his bitter fate she moans,
  While the sad father answers groans with groans.
  Tears after tears his mournful cheeks o'erflow,
  And the whole city wears one face of woe:
  No less than if the rage of hostile fires,
  From her foundations curling to her spires,
  O'er the proud citadel at length should rise,
  And the last blaze send Ilion to the skies.



NOTE.—As the Iliad is the greatest of Greek poems, so the Aeneid is the greatest of Latin poems. It was written by Vergil, who lived in the first century B. C., and is one of the classics which every one who studies Latin takes up. References to it are almost as frequent in literature as are references to the Iliad, to which it is closely related. The translation from which this selection of the Wooden Horse is taken is by John Conington.

The Iliad deals with the Trojan War (see introductory note to Death of Hector), while the Aeneid deals with the wanderings of a Trojan hero after the fall of his city. Aeneas, from whom the Aeneid takes its name, was the son of Anchises and Venus, goddess of love, and was one of the bravest of the Trojan heroes; indeed, he was second only to Hector.

When Troy was taken by the stratagem which Aeneas describes in this selection, he set sail with numerous followers for Italy, where fate had ordained that he should found a great nation. Juno, however, who hated the Trojans, drove the hero from his course, and brought upon him many sufferings. At last in his wanderings he came to the northern shore of Africa, where he found a great city, Carthage. Dido, queen of the Carthaginians, received Aeneas hospitably, and had prepared for him a great feast, at the conclusion of which she besought him to relate to her the story of the fall of Troy. Aeneas objected at first, as he feared he could not endure the pain which the recital would give him, but in the end he complied with her request.

The following selection gives the account of the stratagem by which the
Greeks, after thirteen years' siege, finally took Troy.

  Torn down by wars,
  Long beating 'gainst Fate's dungeon-bars,
    As year kept chasing year,*
  The Danaan* chiefs, with cunning given.
  By Pallas,* mountain-high to heaven
    A giant horse uprear,
  And with compacted beams of pine
  The texture of its ribs entwine,
  A vow for their return they feign:
  So runs the tale, and spreads amain.
  There in the monster's cavernous side
  Huge frames of chosen chiefs they hide,
  And steel-clad soldiery finds room
  Within that death-producing womb.

   *[Footnote: The Greeks besieged Troy, or Ilium, for nine years
     without making much head against it, and in the tenth year
     succeeded in taking the city only by fraud, which Aeneas here
   *[Footnote: Danaans is a poetical name for the Greeks.]
   *[Footnote: Pallas was Minerva, daughter of Jupiter, and one of the
     most powerful of the goddesses. She favored the Greeks, and longed
     to take their part against the Trojans, but was forbidden by Jupiter
     to aid them in any way except by advising them.]

    An isle there lies in Ilium's sight,
      And Tenedos its name,
  While Priam's fortune yet was bright,
    Known for its wealth to fame:
  Now all has dwindled to a bay,
  Where ships in treacherous shelter stay.

[Illustration: THE WOODEN HORSE]

  Thither they sail, and hide their host
  Along its desolated coast.
  We thought them to Mycenae* flown
  And rescued Troy forgets to groan.
  Wide stand the gates: what joy to go
      The Dorian camp to see,
  The land disburthened of the foe,
      The shore from vessels free!
  There pitched Thessalia's squadron, there
      Achilles' tent was set:
  There, drawn on land, their navies were,
      And there the battle met.
  Some on Minerva's offering gaze,
  And view its bulk with strange amaze:
  And first Thymoetes loudly calls
  To drag the steed within our walls,
  Or by suggestion from the foe,
  Or Troy's ill fate had willed it so.
  But Capys and the wiser kind
  Surmised the snare that lurked behind:
  To drown it in the whelming tide,
  Or set the fire-brand to its side,
  Their sentence is: or else to bore
  Its caverns, and their depths explore.
  In wild confusion sways the crowd:
  Each takes his side and all are loud.

   *[Footnote: Mycenae was the capital city of Agamemnon, the leader
     of the Greeks in the Trojan War.]

    Girt with a throng of Ilium's sons,
  Down from the tower Laocoön runs,
  And, "Wretched countrymen," he cries,
  "What monstrous madness blinds your eyes?
  Think you your enemies removed?
      Come presents without wrong
  From Danaans? have you thus approved
      Ulysses,* known so long?
  Perchance—who knows?—the bulk we see
  Conceals a Grecian enemy,
  Or 'tis a pile to o'erlook the town,
  And pour from high invaders down,
  Or fraud lurks somewhere to destroy:
  Mistrust, mistrust it, men of Troy!
  Whate'er it be, a Greek I fear,
  Though presents in his hand he bear."
  He spoke, and with his arm's full force
  Straight at the belly of the horse
      His mighty spear he cast:
  Quivering it stood: the sharp rebound
  Shook the huge monster; and a sound
      Through all its caverns passed.
  And then, had fate our weal designed
  Nor given us a perverted mind,
  Then had he moved us to deface
  The Greeks' accursed lurking-place,
  And Troy had been abiding still,
  And Priam's tower yet crowned the hill.

   *[Footnote: Ulysses was the craftiest of the Greeks, the man to
     whom they appealed when in need of wise advice.]

  Now Dardan* swains before the king
  With clamorous demonstration bring,
  His hands fast bound, a youth unknown,
  Across their casual pathway thrown
  By cunning purpose of his own,
  If so his simulated speech
  For Greece the walls of Troy might breach,
  Nerved by strong courage to defy
  The worst, and gain his end or die.
  The curious Trojans round him flock,
  With rival zeal a foe to mock.
  Now listen while my tongue declares
  The tale you ask of Danaan snares,
  And gather from a single charge
  Their catalogue of crimes at large.
  There as he stands, confused, unarmed,
  Like helpless innocence alarmed,
  His wistful eyes on all sides throws,
  And sees that all around are foes,
  "What land," he cries, "what sea is left,
  To hold a wretch of country reft,
  Driven out from Greece while savage Troy
  Demands my blood with clamorous joy?"
  That anguish put our rage to flight,
  And stayed each hand in act to smite:
  We bid him name and race declare,
  And say why Troy her prize should spare.
  Then by degrees he laid aside
  His fear, and presently replied:

   *[Footnote: The Trojans were called Dardans, from Dardanus, the
     founder of Troy.]

    "Truth, gracious king, is all I speak,
  And first I own my nation Greek:
  No; Sinon may be Fortune's slave;
  She shall not make him liar or knave,
  If haply to your ears e'er came
  Belidan Palamedes'* name,
  Borne by the tearful voice of Fame,
  Whom erst, by false impeachment sped,
  Maligned because for peace he pled,
  Greece gave to death, now mourns him dead,—
  His kinsman I, while yet a boy,
  Sent by a needy sire to Troy.
  While he yet stood in kingly state,
  'Mid brother kings in council great,
  I too had power: but when he died,
  By false Ulysses' spite belied
  (The tale is known), from that proud height
  I sank to wretchedness and night,
  And brooded in my dolorous gloom
  On that my guiltless kinsman's doom.
  Not all in silence; no, I swore,
  Should Fortune bring me home once more,
  My vengeance should redress his fate,
  And speech engendered cankerous hate.
  Thence dates my fall: Ulysses thence
  Still scared me with some fresh pretence,
  With chance-dropt words the people fired,
  Sought means of hurt, intrigued, conspired.
  Nor did the glow of hatred cool,
  Till, wielding Calchas* as his tool—
  But why a tedious tale repeat,
  To stay you from your morsel sweet?
  If all are equal, Greek and Greek,
  Enough: your tardy vengeance wreak.
  My death will Ithacus* delights,
  And Atreus'* sons the boon requite."

   *[Footnote: It was Palamedes who induced Ulysses to join in the
     expedition against Troy. Preferring to remain at home with his
     wife Penelope and his infant son Telemachus, Ulysses pretended
     madness, and Palamedes, when he came to beg for his aid, found
     him plowing up the seashore and sowing it with salt. Palamedes
     was quite certain that the madness was feigned, and to test it,
     set Telemachus in front of the plow. By turning aside his plow,
     Ulysses showed that he was really sane. Later Palamedes lost
     favor with Grecian leaders because he urged them to give up the
     struggle and return home.]
   *[Footnote: Calchas was the most famous of the Grecian sooth-sayers
     or prophets. They never began any important operations until
     Calchas had first been consulted and had told them what the gods
   *[Footnote: Ithacus is a name given to Ulysses, who was from
   *[Footnote: The sons of Atreus were Agamemnon, leader of the
     Grecians, and Menelaus, King of Sparta, the theft of whose wife,
     Helen, was cause of the Trojan War.]

    We press, we yearn the truth to know,
  Nor dream how doubly base our foe:
  He, faltering still and overawed,
  Takes up the unfinished web of fraud.
  "Oft had we planned to leave your shore,
  Nor tempt the weary conflict more.
  O, had we done it! sea and sky
  Scared us as oft, in act to fly:
  But chiefly when completed stood
  This horse, compact of maple wood,
  Fierce thunders, pealing in our ears,
  Proclaimed the turmoil of the spheres.
  Perplexed, Eurypylus we send
  To question what the fates portend,
  And he from Phoebus'* awful shrine
  Brings back the words of doom divine:
  'With blood ye pacified the gales,
      E'en with a virgin slain,*
  When first ye Danaans spread your sails,
      The shores of Troy to gain:
  With blood ye your return must buy:
  A Greek must at the altar die.'
  That sentence reached the public ear,
  And bred the dull amaze of fear:
  Through every heart a shudder ran,
  'Apollo's victim—who the man?'
  Ulysses, turbulent and loud,
  Drags Calchas forth before the crowd.
  And questions what the immortals mean,
  Which way these dubious beckonings lean:
  E'en then were some discerned my foe,
  And silent watch the coming blow.
  Ten days the seer, with bated breath,
  Restrained the utterance big with death:
  O'erborne at last, the word agreed
  He speaks, and destines me to bleed.
  All gave a sigh, as men set free,
  And hailed the doom, content to see
  The bolt that threatened each alike
  One solitary victim strike.
  The death-day came: the priests prepare
  Salt cakes, and fillets for my hair;
  I fled, I own it, from the knife,
  I broke my bands and ran for life,
  And in a marish lay that night,
  While they should sail, if sail they might.
  No longer have I hope, ah me!
  My ancient fatherland to see,
  Or look on those my eyes desire,
  My darling sons, my gray-haired sire:
  Perhaps my butchers may requite
  On their dear heads my traitorous flight,
  And make their wretched lives atone
  For this, the single crime I own.
  O, by the gods, who all things view,
  And know the false man from the true,
  By sacred Faith, if Faith remain
  With mortal men preserved from stain,
  Show grace to innocence forlorn,
  Show grace to woes unduly borne!"

   *[Footnote: Phoebus Apollo, god of the sun and of prophecy.]
   *[Footnote: When the Greeks set out for Troy, their ships were
     becalmed at Aulis, in Boeotia. Calchas consulted the signs and
     declared that the delay was caused by the huntress-goddess Diana,
     who was angry at Agamemnon for killing one of her sacred stags.
     Only by the death of Iphigenia, daughter of Agamemnon, could the
     wrathful goddess be placated. The maiden was sent for, but on her
     arrival at Aulis she was slain by the priest at Diana's altar.
     According to another version of the story, Iphigenia was not put
     to death, but was conveyed by Diana to Tauris, where she served as
     priestess in Diana's temple.]

    Moved by his tears, we let him live,
  And pity crowns the boon we give:
  King Priam bids unloose his cords,
  And soothes the wretch with kindly words.
  "Whoe'er you are, henceforth resign
  All thought of Greece: be Troy's and mine:
  Now tell me truth, for what intent
  This fabric of the horse was meant;
  An offering to your heavenly liege?
  An engine for assault or siege?"
  Then, schooled in all Pelasgian* shifts,
  His unbound hands to heaven he lifts:
  "Ye slumberless, inviolate fires,
  And the dread awe your name inspires!
  Ye murderous altars, which I fled!
  Ye fillets that adorned my head!
  Bear witness, and behold me free
  To break my Grecian fealty;
  To hate the Greeks, and bring to light
  The counsels they would hide in night,
  Unchecked by all that once could bind,
  All claims of country or of kind.
  Thou, Troy, remember ne'er to swerve,
  Preserved thyself, thy faith preserve,
  If true the story I relate,
  If these, my prompt returns, be great.

   *[Footnote: Pelasgian means Grecian. The name is derived from
     that of Pelasgus, an early Greek hero. By their neighbors the
     Greeks were regarded as a deceitful, double-dealing nation.]

    "The warlike hopes of Greece were stayed,
  E'en from the first, on Pallas' aid:
  But since Tydides,* impious man,
  And foul Ulysses, born to plan,
  Dragged with red hands, the sentry slain,
  Her fateful image* from your fane,
  Her chaste locks touched, and stained with gore
  The virgin coronal she wore,
  Thenceforth the tide of fortune changed,
  And Greece grew weak, her queen* estranged
  Nor dubious were the sig'ns of ill
  That showed the goddess' altered will.
  The image scarce in camp was set,
  Out burst big drops of saltest sweat
  O'er all her limbs: her eyes upraised
  With minatory lightnings blazed;
  And thrice untouched from earth she sprang
  With quivering spear and buckler's clang.
  'Back o'er the ocean!' Calchas cries:
  'We shall not make Troy's town our prize,
  Unless at Argos' sacred seat
  Our former omens we repeat,
  And bring once more the grace we brought
  When first these shores our navy sought.'
  So now for Greece they cross the wave,
  Fresh blessings on their arms to crave,
  Thence to return, so Calchas rules,
  Unlocked for, ere your wonder cools.
  Premonished first, this frame they planned
  In your Palladium's stead to stand,
  An image for an image given
  To pacify offended Heaven.
  But Calchas bade them rear it high
  With timbers mounting to the sky,
  That none might drag within the gate
  This new Palladium of your state.
  For, said he, if your hands profaned
  The gift for Pallas' self ordained,
  Dire havoc—grant, ye powers, that first
  That fate be his!—on Troy should burst:
  But if, in glad procession haled
  By those your hands, your walls it scaled,
  Then Asia should our homes invade,
  And unborn captives mourn the raid."

   *[Footnote: Tydides was Diomedes, son of Tydeus. The termination
     -ides means son of; thus Pelides is Achilles, son of Peleus.]
   *[Footnote: There was in a temple of Troy an image of Minerva, or
     Pallas, called the palladium, which was supposed to have fallen
     from the sky. The Greeks learned of a prophecy which declared that
     Troy could never be taken while the palladium remained within its
     walls, and Ulysses and Diomedes were entrusted with the task of
     stealing it. In disguise they entered the city one night, procured
     the sacred image and bore it off to the Grecian camp.]
   *[Footnote: Minerva, supposedly angered at the desecration of her

    Such tale of pity, aptly feigned,
  Our credence for the perjurer gained,
  And tears, wrung out from fraudful eyes,
  Made us, e'en us, a villain's prize,
  'Gainst whom not valiant Diomede,
  Nor Peleus' Larissaean* seed,
  Nor ten years' fighting could prevail,
  Nor navies of a thousand sail.

  *[Footnote: Achilles. Larissa was a town in Thessaly, of which
    Peleus, the father of Achilles, was king.]

[Illustration: LAOCOÖN Statuary Group in The Vatican, Rome]

    But ghastlier portents lay behind,
  Our unprophetic souls to bind.
  Laocoön, named as Neptune's priest,
  Was offering up the victim beast,
  When lo! from Tenedos—I quail,
  E'en now, at telling of the tale—
  Two monstrous serpents stem the tide,
  And shoreward through the stillness glide.
  Amid the waves they rear their breasts,
  And toss on high their sanguine crests:
  The hind part coils along the deep,
  And undulates with sinuous sweep.
  The lashed spray echoes: now they reach
  The inland belted by the beach,
  And rolling bloodshot eyes of fire,
  Dart their forked tongues, and hiss for ire.
  We fly distraught: unswerving they
  Toward Laocoön hold their way;
  First round his two young sons they wreathe,
  And grind their limbs with savage teeth:
  Then, as with arms he comes to aid,
  The wretched father they invade
  And twine in giant folds: twice round
  His stalwart waist their spires are wound,
  Twice round his neck, while over all
  Their heads and crests tower high and tall.
  He strains his strength their knots to tear,*
  While gore and slime his fillets smear,
  And to the unregardful skies
  Sends up his agonizing cries:
  A wounded bull such moaning makes,
  When from his neck the axe he shakes,
  Ill-aimed, and from the altar breaks.
  The twin destroyers take their flight
  To Pallas' temple on the height;
  There by the goddess' feet concealed
  They lie, and nestle 'neath her shield.
  At once through Ilium's hapless sons
  A shock of feverous horror runs:
  All in Laocoön's death-pangs read
  The just requital of his deed,
  Who dared to harm with impious stroke
  Those ribs of consecrated oak.
  "The image to its fane!" they cry:
  "So soothe the offended deity."
  Each in the labour claims his share:
  The walls are breached, the town laid bare:
  Wheels 'neath its feet are fixed to glide,
  And round its neck stout ropes are tied:
  So climbs our wall that shape of doom,
  With battle quickening in its womb,
  While youths and maidens sing glad songs,
  And joy to touch the harness-thongs.
  It comes, and, glancing terror down,
  Sweeps through the bosom of the town.
  O Ilium, city of my love!
  O warlike home of powers above!
  Four times 'twas on the threshold stayed:
  Four times the armour clashed and brayed.
  Yet on we press with passion blind,
  All forethought blotted from our mind,
  Till the dread monster we install
  Within the temple's tower-built wall.
  E'en then Cassandra's* prescient voice
  Forewarned us of our fatal choice—
  That prescient voice, which Heaven decreed
  No son of Troy should hear and heed.
  We, careless souls, the city through,
  With festal boughs the fanes bestrew,
  And in such revelry employ
  The last, last day should shine on Troy.

   *[Footnote: The death of Laocoön and his sons has always been a
     favorite subject in art and in poetry. (See illustration.)]
   *[Footnote: Cassandra was a daughter of Priam, king of Troy. She had
     been loved by Apollo, who bestowed on her the gift of prophecy; but
     she had angered him by failing to return his love, and he, unable
     to take back the gift, decreed that her prophecies should never be
     believed. All through the siege she had uttered her predictions and
     always they proved true; but no one ever paid heed to her warnings.]

    Meantime Heaven shifts from light to gloom,
  And night ascends from Ocean's womb,
  Involving in her shadow broad
  Earth, sky, and Myrmidonian* fraud:
  And through the city, stretched at will,
  Sleep the tired Trojans, and are still.

*[Footnote: Here Myrmidonian means simply Grecian.]

    And now from Tenedos set free
  The Greeks are sailing on the sea,
  Bound for the shore where erst they lay,
  Beneath the still moon's friendly ray:
  When in a moment leaps to sight
  On the king's ship the signal light,
  And Sinon, screened by partial fate,
  Unlocks the pine-wood prison's gate.
  The horse its charge to air restores,
  And forth the armed invasion pours.
  Thessander,* Sthenelus, the first,
  Slide down the rope: Ulysses curst,
  Thoas and Acamas are there,
  And great Pelides' youthful heir,
  Machaon, Menelaus, last
  Epeus, who the plot forecast.
  They seize the city, buried deep
  In floods of revelry and sleep,
  Cut down the warders of the gates,
  And introduce their banded mates.*

   *[Footnote: These are all Grecian heroes.]
   *[Footnote: After the Greeks entered the gates the chief Trojan
     citizens were put to death, and the city was set on fire, Aeneas,
     with his little son and his aged father, escaped and took ship
     for Italy, accompanied by a band of followers.]


Adapted From THE ODYSSEY

NOTE.—The Odyssey is one of the most famous of the old Greek poems, one that is still read and enjoyed by students of the Greek language, and one that in its translations has given pleasure to many English and American readers. Its influence on the works of our best writers has been remarkable, and everybody wishes to know something about it.

It is in twenty-four books or parts, and tells of the wanderings and adventures of the Greek hero, Ulysses, king of Ithaca, after the Trojan War. His wanderings lasted for ten years, but most of the Odyssey is taken up with the events that happened in the last few weeks of this time, during which period, at intervals, Ulysses himself tells the story of his wanderings, winning everywhere the sympathy and admiration of those to whom he tells it.

It is customary to speak of the Odyssey as one of Homer's poems, but the probability is that it was written at different times by different people, and at a date later than that at which the Iliad was written. One of the standard translations of the Odyssey is that of Alexander Pope, which is followed in this story. The tale has of necessity been very much abridged; the details of the journeyings of Ulysses are omitted entirely, and the emphasis is placed on his return home.

* * * * *

When Ulysses departed to join in the Trojan War, he left his wife Penelope and his young son Telemachus at home. He was one of the foremost of the Greek chieftains in the Trojan War, and his deeds are a prominent part of the story in the Iliad.

After Ulysses had been many years absent, he was thought by most of his friends to be dead, and many disorders grew up in his kingdom. Most disturbing of all was the fact that many wicked and treacherous men came about Penelope as suitors for her hand, claiming that there was no reason why she should not marry, as her husband had not been heard of since the Trojan War, and had undoubtedly long since died. Both Penelope and Telemachus still clung to the thought that Ulysses might be living, and the mother would by no means consent to taking another husband.

At this time the gods in council decided that Ulysses should be brought back home, and accordingly Telemachus was inspired to travel in search of his father. Hoping that his journey might be successful, Telemachus, guided by Minerva in the shape of the wise old Mentor, set out on his long and trying journey. In time he learned that his father was still living, and had been held for many years in the Island of Calypso. During the absence of Telemachus, the suitors of Penelope planned to destroy him on his voyage home, but failed to accomplish their purpose.

After much persuasion by the gods, Calypso was induced to release Ulysses, and he, building a boat with his own hands, set out on his homeward journey, but in a terrible tempest was shipwrecked and barely escaped with his life, being rescued by a princess to whom he tells the story of his journeyings.

He told how at one time he was in a ship driven by a tempest far from shore, and finally landed upon the flowery coast of the land of Lotus, where he found a hospitable race who lived a lazy, happy life, eating and drinking the things which nature provided them. So divinely sweet were the lotus leaves that whosoever ate them were willing to quit his house, his country and his friends, and wish for no other home than the enchanting land where the lotus plant flourished.

Denying themselves the pleasure of tasting the lotus leaves, Ulysses and his men sailed from the coast to the land of Cyclops, where they were appalled by the sight of a shepherd, enormous in size, unlike any human being, for he had but one eye, and that a huge one in the center of his forehead. Ulysses with a few of his men landed upon the shore and visited the giant's cavern home. While they were inspecting this strange place, the monster returned, bearing on his back half a forest which he cast down at the door, where it thundered as it fell. After building a huge fire, the giant entered the cavern, and in a voice of thunder asked Ulysses who he was, and why he came to this shore. Ulysses explained, and for an answer the huge Cyclops seized two of the followers of Ulysses, dashed them against the stony floor, and like a mountain beast devoured them utterly, draining the blood from their bodies and sucking the marrow from their bones.


After satisfying his hunger, the monster slept upon the ground, and all night long Ulysses and his followers lay in deadly terror. The next day Ulysses gave the giant wine, and when he was sleeping in a drunken stupor, the Greek hero took a green stick, and heating it until it burnt and sparkled a fiery red, thrust its flaming point into the only eye the Cyclops had.

Raging with pain, the monster stumbled about the cave trying without success to find Ulysses and his followers, though he did discover the door, and stationed himself there to prevent their escape. In the cave were the great sheep that made the herd of the Cyclops, and throwing themselves beneath the animals and clinging to their wool, Ulysses and his followers escaped through the door, while the blind giant was touching his sheep one by one to see that nothing but sheep passed out. Soon the hero and his men were safe on board the ship, though they narrowly escaped destruction from a big boulder that the giant threw into the sea when he discovered that his victims had made their escape.

Aeolus, ruler of the winds, anxious to aid Ulysses, gave him prosperous winds and tied the treacherous winds up in a bag, but some of the curious mariners untied the bag, and the conflicting winds escaping, destroyed several of the ships and threw Ulysses and the survivors upon the island of Circe.

This famed enchantress, following her usual custom, turned the followers of Ulysses into swine, but he, aided by Mercury, released them from their enchantment.

After a year's stay on this island, he was urged by Circe to make a descent into the Infernal Regions, where he saw the tortures inflicted upon the wicked who had died before him. On his return he was sent upon another voyage, where he met the Sirens, who lured some of his men to destruction by their charming songs; but Ulysses himself escaped by having himself chained to the mast. He sailed between Scylla and Charybdis safely, though he lost some of his men in the terrible passage.

After Ulysses told in full his story, the kindly princess put him on board a magic ship and sent him to Ithaca, where he was placed on shore with all his treasures, though he did not at first know where he was.

However, he finally learned that he was home again, and visited the house of a favorite servant, who gave him a full account of what had happened during his absence.

In the meantime Telemachus returned home, having learned that his father was still living; and, directed by the gods, he went to the house of the same old servant with whom Ulysses had taken refuge. That night the father and son recognized each other, and after a joyful reunion they lay down to rest, having decided that in the morning Telemachus should repair to the palace and tell Penelope that her husband was still alive, but leave her in ignorance of the fact that he was near at hand.

In the rosy light of the morning the young prince hastened across the dewy lawn on his way to his mother. When he reached the palace he propped his spear against the wall, leaped like a lion over the threshold, hastened with running steps across the hall, and threw himself into the arms of his loving mother. The passionate joy of their meeting was shadowed only by the story that Telemachus had to tell, yet the story was lightened somewhat by the knowledge that Ulysses still lived, though under enchantment, and might in time be able to return to his kingdom.

Penelope, knowing that her husband was still living, became more than ever incensed at the outrageous conduct of the suitors, who had quartered themselves in her palace and were living in luxury and vice. However, even with Telemachus at her side, it was impossible to drive out the powerful men, so that she felt compelled still to endure their unwelcome presence.

According to the plans made by Ulysses and his son, the former about this time started for the palace, clothed like a beggar, with a scrip flung over his shoulders around his patched and ragged gown. Leaning upon a rude staff which his old servant had given him, Ulysses and his servant passed along the road and descended into the town.

On the way they met a most wicked and treacherous former servant of Ulysses, who, now risen to power, insulted the beggared chief by word and blow. It was with difficulty that Ulysses restrained himself, for all his mighty rage was roused, and he swung his staff as though to strike his insulter dead. However, remembering what was at stake, he conquered himself and endured the insults.

As they drew near the gates of the city, they saw lying in the filth of the gutter an old, decrepit dog, who had been the pet and joy of Ulysses before he left for war. Argus was now grown old and feeble, and had been kicked from the palace by the cruel servants and left to starve in the street. No sooner, however, had the chieftain approached than Argus knew his master, and dragged himself, panting, to kiss the feet of the returned hero.

Ulysses, recognizing the dog, exclaimed, "See this noble beast lying abandoned in the gutter! Once he was vigorous, bold and young; swift as a stag, and strong as a lion. Now he lies dying from hunger. Surely his age deserves some care. Was he merely a worthless beauty, and is he despised for that reason?"

"No," replied the servant, "he once belonged to Ulysses, but since the chieftain left his home, nothing restrains the servants; and where riot reigns there can be no humanity.

"Whenever man makes himself a slave, half his worth is taken away."

While they were speaking, Argus raised his head, took one last look at his master, and closed his eyes forever.

A moment later, Ulysses, a despicable figure, old and poor, in ragged clothing, trembling and leaning on his staff, rested against the pillar of his own gate. Telemachus was the first to see his father, and ordered that food should be given the poor beggar, and that he should be invited to enter the hall and share the comforts of the palace. The experiences of the poor old mendicant in the palace were more trying than any that he had had, for he met with nothing but insults and abuse from the assembled suitors, in spite of the fact that Telemachus more than once urged them to be generous, and himself set the example repeatedly.

Once only did Ulysses give way to his rage, and that was when another beggar insulted him and challenged him to fight. Then Ulysses spread his broad shoulders, braced his limbs, expanded his ample chest, and struck but once with his powerful right arm. Although he expended but half his strength, the blow crushed the jaw-bone of the beggar, and felled him, stunned and quivering, to the ground, while from his mouth and nostrils poured a stream of purple blood.

This happened in the street before the palace, and Ulysses, taking no notice of his fallen foe, flung his tattered scrip across his shoulder, knotted the thong around his waist, and returned to the palace, where the nobles joined in sarcastic compliments on his strength.

While Ulysses hung about the palace in beggar's garb, only one person recognized him, and that was his old nurse Euryclea, who saw upon his knee a scar, that came from a wound which he had received when a youth in hunting a wild boar. Then the old nurse had tended the wound, and now she knew at once her fallen master. With difficulty Ulysses restrained her joy, and urged her to keep his secret till the time came to disclose it.

While these things were happening, the suitors grew more and more insistent, and at a great banquet in the palace they became so riotous that both Penelope and Telemachus knew that something must be done.

Ulysses was subjected to continual insult, and the suitors, quarreling among themselves, insisted that Penelope should give them some definite answer.

Finally the queen and her son perfected a plan and announced to the suitors that at a certain time after the feast the queen would decide which she would accept. Penelope then went to the inmost room of the palace and unlocked the door where the royal treasures lay, and taking from among them the great bow which Ulysses had carried, and the quiver that contained his arrows, she brought them down to the hall. This bow was a gift to Ulysses in his youth, and the warrior had used it in many a fierce combat, but so powerful was it that none but himself could bend it.

Taking the bow before the assembled suitors, the majestic queen spoke as follows: "You make vain pretense that you love me; you speak of me as a prize, and you say you seek me as a wife. Now hear the conditions under which I will decide, and commence the trial. Whichever one of you shall first bend the bow of Ulysses, and send a fleet arrow through the eyes of twelve axes truly arranged, him will I follow, leaving this home which has been my delight and which now has come to be but a torture to me."

She spoke carefully, and at the same time showed the rings and the bow. But as she touched the powerful weapon, thoughts of her lost king filled her eyes with tears.

The suitors did not like the plan Penelope proposed, but saw no other way to gratify their hopes. Although they objected, Telemachus insisted that Ulysses should be present at the trial, and that he himself should be the first to make the attempt, for he said, "If I win, then will my mother go with me."

Three times Telemachus twanged the bow, and three times his arrows sped along the hall, each time missing by a narrower margin the difficult mark. As he was about to make the fourth attempt, Ulysses signaled him to stop, feeling sure that on this trial the young man would succeed.

Disappointed and grieving, Telemachus obeyed, saying, "I have failed, but it is because of my youth and not my weakness. So let the suitors try."

The first to make the attempt was Leiodes, a blameless priest, the best of all the suitors, the only one in the throng who was a decent man, and who detested the conduct of the wretches who hung about the queen. However strong his heart, his feeble fingers were not able to bend the bow, and in despair he passed it on to the next. One after another the suitors tried and failed, till only two remained; but they were the mightiest and the best.

At this point Ulysses, still in disguise, summoned two of his old servants, the masters of his herds and flocks, and with them passed out of the banquet hall. Once by themselves, the king made himself known, and in a moment both the men were at his feet, embracing his knees and shedding tears of joy and gratitude.

Without delay, Ulysses spoke, "We have no time now to indulge in unseemly joy. Our foes are too numerous and too fierce, and almost before we know it some one may betray us. Let us return to the banquet separately; I first, and you following me a few moments later. Tell no one who I am, but when the remaining suitors refuse to allow me to make the attempt with the bow, you, Eumaeus, bring the instrument at once. In the meantime lock every gate of the palace, and set some woman to lock each door within and leave it locked, no matter what sound of arms, or shouts, or dying groans they hear. You, Philaetius, guard the main gate to the palace; guard it faithfully with your life!"

When Ulysses was within, he spoke to the two powerful suitors as follows: "Take my advice, noble lords, let the bow rest in peace this day, and tomorrow dispute for the prize. But as you delay the contest, let me take the bow for one moment and prove to you that I whom you despise may yet have in my feeble arm some of its ancient force."

Antinous, with lightning flashing from his eyes, yet with some terror at the bold carriage of the beggar, cried, "Is it not enough, O miserable guest, that you should sit in our presence, should be admitted among princes? Remember how the Centaur was treated; dragged from the hall, his nose shortened and his ears slit. Such a fate may be yours."

But the queen interfered, saying, "It is impious to shame this stranger guest who comes at the request of our son Telemachus. Who knows but that he may have strength to draw the bow? Virtue is the path to praise; wrong and oppression can bring no renown. From his bearing, and from his face and his stature, we know our guest can have descended from no vulgar race. Let him try the bow, and if he wins he shall have a new sword, a spear, a rich cloak, fine embroidered sandals, and a safe conveyance to his home."

"O royal mother," interrupted Telemachus, "grant me a son's just right! No one but a Grecian prince has power to grant or deny the use of this bow. My father's arms have descended to me alone. I beg you, O queen, return to your household tasks and leave us here together. The bow and the arms of chivalry belong to man alone, and most of all these belong to me."

With admiration for her manly son, Penelope left the banquet hall and returned to her chamber, where she sat revolving in her mind her son's words, while thoughts of his noble father brought abundant tears to her eyes.

In the hall was riot, noise, and wild uproar as Euinaeus started to place the bow in the hand of Ulysses.

"Go back to thy den, far away from the society of men, or we will throw you to your dogs!" cried the crowd of disappointed suitors to the trembling servant.

"Slight their empty words, listen not to them," shouted Telemachus. "Are you so foolish as to think you can please so many lords? If you give not the bow to the suppliant, my hands shall drive you from the land, and if I were strong enough I would expel this whole shoal of lawless men." Thus encouraged, Euinaeus handed the great bow to the king.

In the meantime the gates had been closed, and Philaetius secured them with strong cables, after which he returned silent to the banquet room, and took his seat with his eyes upon his lord.

In his hands Ulysses turned the bow on all sides, and viewed it over and over, wondering if time had weakened it, or other injury had come to it during his long absence. Snarling in anger, the suitors spoke derisively, but the chieftain disdained reply, and continued with exact eye to study every inch of his weapon. Then with ease he held the bow aloft in one hand, and with the other tried its strength. It twanged short and sharp like the shrill cry of a swallow. Every face paled, and a general horror ran through all present, for from the skies the lightning burst, and Jove thundered loudly on high.

Then sitting as he was, Ulysses fitted an arrow to the string and drew back, leveling his eye to every ring. Then with a mighty pull, he drew back the bow and gave the arrow wing. Straight it left the string, and straight it passed through every ring and struck the gate behind, piercing even the solid wood through and through.


"I have brought no shame to you," said Ulysses, turning to Telemachus, "nor has my hand proved unfaithful to my aim. I have not lost my ancient vigor, and ill did I deserve the disdain of these haughty peers. Let them go and find comfort among themselves, if they can, in music and banqueting."

Even as Ulysses spoke, Telemachus girded on his shining sword, seized a javelin, and took his stand at his father's side.

From that moment Ulysses ceased to be the beggar, and stripped of his rags he stood forth like a god, full before the faces of the astonished suitors. He lifted his bow, and threw before his feet a rattling shower of darts.

"We have another game to play this day, O coward princes!" he exclaimed. "Another mark we must reach with our arrows. May Phoebus assist us, and our labor not be in vain!"

With the last word, the great chieftain loosed his arrow, and on its wing death rode to Antinous, who at that moment had raised a golden bowl from which to drink. The fateful arrow passed through his neck, and he fell upon the floor, and the wine from the tumbling goblet mingled with his blood.

The rest of the suitors were confounded at what they saw, and thronged the hall tumultously, half in fear and half in anger.

"Do you aim at princes?" they cried. "This is the last of the unhappy games you shall play. Death now awaits you, and vultures shall tear your body."

"Dogs, you have had your day," the Greek warrior spoke. "You thought there was no further fear of Ulysses, and here you have squandered his wealth, made his house your home, and preyed upon his servants. Worse than all, fired by frenzy, you have claimed even the wife of your chieftain. You have known neither shame nor dread of the gods, and now is come the hour of vengeance. Behold your King!"

The confused suitors stood around with pale cheeks and guilty heads before the dreadful words of Ulysses.

Eurymachus alone was bold enough to speak. "If you are indeed Ulysses, great are your wrongs, for your property has been, squandered, and riot and debauchery have filled your palace. But at your feet now lies Antinous, whose wild ambition meant to slay your son and divide your kingdom. Since he is dead, spare the rest of your people. Our gold and treasures shall defray the expense, and the waste of years shall be refunded to you within the day. Until then, your wrath is just."

With high disdain the king thus sternly spoke, "All the treasures that we had before you began your pillage, joined with all your own, would not bring you mercy. I demand your blood and your lives as prizes, and shall not cease till every one of you lies as pale as yonder wretch upon the floor. You have but one choice—to fight or to fly."

All the great assembly trembled with guilty fears excepting Eurymachus alone, who calling upon the others to follow him, drew his traitor sword, and rushed like a lion against his lord.

As they met, Ulysses turned aside the sword of his rushing foe, and forced his own through the traitor's breast. Eurymachus dropped his sword from his weakening hand, and fell prone upon the table, breaking it to the ground, and scattering the rich viands over the marble floor.

Almost at the same moment Amphinomus rushed forward to the attack, but Telemachus drove his brazen spear through the breast of the fierce foe, who fell crashing to the stones.

"Arm! great father, arm!" cried Telemachus. "In haste I run for other arms and missiles, for helmet and shield. Let the two servants stand faithfully by your side till I return."

"Haste!" replied Ulysses, "lest the host come upon us all at once, and we be driven from our post."

Telemachus flew to the room where the royal armor lay, and brought with him four brazen helmets, eight shining spears, and four broad shields. Still among the coward princes the arrows of Ulysses were flying, each carrying death to an enemy. Each placed a helmet upon his head, and buckled on an armor, and thus clothed, the four stood shoulder to shoulder, awaiting the onset, for by this time the surviving princes had remembered the strength that lay in their numbers, and prepared to charge together upon the king and his attendants.

Now Minerva, the wise goddess and friend of Ulysses, appeared again before him as the aged Mentor, and advised him how to fight. Then with change of form, she suddenly perched like a swallow on a rafter high, where, unperceived, she could watch the struggle.

The conflict that followed was a sight worthy of the gods, for again and again the traitor princes charged upon the doughty four, each time losing some of their number; for rarely did it fail that the king and each of his faithful adherents took at least one life from the multitude. Again and again clouds of darts threatened the life of the king and his son, but every time Minerva blew them aside, and they fell harmless upon the floor, or buried themselves in the woodwork behind the struggling heroes. At last but three of the attacking party remained alive. First of these was Leiodes, the priest, who had first tried the bow of Ulysses.

"O gracious king, hear my supplication! I have never dishonored your house by word or deed, and often I tried to check the injustice of the rest, but they never listened to my words. Do not make yourself guilty of insult to my consecrated head."

"Priest you are," returned Ulysses, "but your vows have been made against me, and against me have your daily prayers been said. Moreover, you aspired to the hand of my wife, and as you joined in the common crime against me, you deserve the common fate."

Even as he spoke, he seized a sword from the hand of one of the dead princes, and swung it flashing through the air, and that moment the priest's head rolled muttering on the floor. There remained only Phemius, the reverend minstrel, whose poems had pleased the king in earlier days, and Medon, the faithful friend and servant of Telemachus.

Neither had taken part in the struggle, and both were spared.

"Be bold," Ulysses said to them, "and rely on the friendship of my son. Live, and be to the world an example, to show how much more safe are good than evil deeds. Go out to the open court and leave us here in this room of blood and carnage."

Carefully the rooms were then searched by Ulysses and his followers, but nowhere could they find a single living traitor. The dead lay on the floor in heaps like fish that had been cast from the net upon the sands, and lie stiffening in the air.

Ulysses was not content till he had punished every evil servant and treacherous man and woman about the palace or in the town in proportion to his misdeeds.

Then by the aid of Euryclea, his faithful old nurse, he robed himself in garments fit for the shoulders of a king, and prepared to meet the queen.

During all this time Penelope had remained in her apartments terrified by the confusion and noise of fighting in the palace, but praying always for her son. We can imagine her surprise and delight when she learned how the battle had turned, and that the beggar, who had fought so manfully, was indeed none other than her husband Ulysses.

Once more in possession of the throne, the Greek hero and his son rapidly destroyed every vestige of the unhappy days that had passed, and soon the kingdom was again enjoying a prosperous and happy reign.


The father of John Bunyan was a poor tinker, a mender of pots and kettles, working sometimes in his own house and sometimes in the homes of others. His son followed the same occupation and did his work well. Even after he became a popular preacher and a great author he kept on with his humble calling. It was a queer occupation for a man of genius, and scarcely any one would expect the man who followed it to write a book that would be more widely read than anything except the Bible. Evidently Bunyan was no common tinker.

John Bunyan was born at Elstow, a village near Bedford, in 1628, a year famous in English history as that in which the king, Charles I, was forced to grant the Petition of Right presented by the House of Commons. But the commotion in politics produced little effect on father and child, and the latter grew up as most English boys of his time did grow, except that he had the advantage of attending a grammar school in Bedford, a greater advantage than it seems unless we remember that there were then no common schools in England.

The young tinker was a violent and passionate boy, profane, and a leader in all the mischief of his kind. In his own account of his early life written long years afterward he accuses himself of all manner of sins. Yet from what he says in other places we know that he was far from being the worst of boys, and that many things that gave him the greatest concern were curiously exaggerated by his uneasy conscience.

He must have been a strange little fellow, for while he was swearing, lying and leading raids upon his neighbors' fruit orchards he was often terrified by the awfulness of his sin and "trembling at the thoughts of the fearful torments of hell-fire."

To appreciate his feelings fully, we must remember the age in which he lived as the time when everything in the Bible was taken as wholly literal, when people believed that sin was followed by awful punishments in a fiery hell, and when miraculous events were considered common.

The young John must have known such occurrences as the following, related by Froude in his Life of Bunyan:

"A man commonly called 'Old Tod' came one day into court, in the Summer Assizes at Bedford, to demand justice upon himself as a felon. No one had accused him, but God's judgment was not to be escaped, and he was forced to accuse himself. 'My lord,' said Old Tod to the judge, 'I have been a thief from my childhood. I have been a thief ever since. There has not been a robbery committed these many years, within so many miles of this town, but I have been privy to it.' The judge, after a conference, agreed to indict him for certain felonies which he had acknowledged. He pleaded guilty, implicating his wife along with him, and they were both hanged."

Filled with terror by the fearful things he heard and saw, it is no wonder that so sensitive a child was haunted by such nightmares as are described by one of his biographers.

[Illustration: JOHN BUNYAN 1628-1688]

Once he dreamed that he was in a pleasant place, jovial and rioting, when an earthquake rent the earth, out of which came bloody flames, and the figures of men tossed up in globes of fire, and falling down again with horrible cries and shrieks and execrations, while devils mingled among them, and laughed aloud at their torments. As he stood trembling, the earth sank under him, and a circle of flames embraced him.. But when he fancied he was at the point to perish, one in shining white raiment descended and plucked him out of that dreadful place, while the devils cried after him to take him to the punishment which his sins deserved. Yet he escaped the danger, and leapt for joy when he awoke and found it was a dream.

At seventeen, Bunyan was a tall, active lad still wild and reckless, an inventor of tales, who swore to their truth, a great leader in athletic sports, but free from drunkenness and other coarse vices. The Civil War was nearing its end, and martial deeds drew Bunyan to enlist, but his term of service was short and it is not known on which side he served.

Soon after this he married an excellent girl, an orphan, who had been brought up religiously and who made an excellent wife for the successful tinker. He was now a regular attendant upon the Established Church, though, as he says, still retaining his wicked life.

The story of Bunyan's conversion is one that is difficult for us to understand. To him it was a series of terrifying experiences, a succession of agonizing struggles, which grew only the more terrible after he was convinced of his own sinful ways. He tells the story of his fearful spiritual contest in the plainest, most matter-of-fact way, but scarcely mentions his home life, his daily work, or the growth of his family.

To him, the Devil was a very real person, who came as a tempter and would not be denied, long after Bunyan had completely reformed his ways and was living a life of strict honesty, purity and self-denial. No sooner had his manner of living become perfect, as we should consider it, than mental and spiritual temptations fell upon him. He believed that he had denied and sold his Savior; that he had committed the one sin for which no atonement was possible, and that he stood on the brink of a very real hell in whose sulphurous flames his body would burn forever. We cannot help pitying the poor country workman whose tender conscience and loyal soul tortured him with pains, worse a thousand times than those of physical death. No doubt his mind wavered in the balance, for such agonies lead to insanity, if they are not the evidence of it.

At last, however, his self-tormenting ceased, and his weary soul found rest in a comforting belief in Christ's forgiveness. As a result of his worry his health had given way, and he felt that his end was at hand. But after peace came to him and he joined the Baptist Church his strength came back, and for several years he kept at his business, making good progress and finding himself at twenty-five years of age in a better position in life than that to which he had been born.

There came to him a further call, and ignorant as he was of history, literature and philosophy, he entered the ministry of his church. He knew his Bible thoroughly, he had experienced all the terrors of the lost and all the joys of the redeemed, and he possessed that living enthusiasm that carries conviction to others. So, when he spoke to the people among whom he had passed his life, he caught the imagination of every one and bore them all along on the flood of his eloquence. No such preacher was there in England; and everywhere, in woods, in barns, on the village greens and in the chapels of the towns he preached his religion.

In the height of his fame, the Commonwealth ended, the Puritans lost their control of political affairs, and Charles II was restored to the throne of England. Soon the separate meetings of the Nonconformists were prohibited, and Bunyan was warned that he must cease his preaching. No one could be more firm, however, in following the dictates of his conscience than this reformed tinker*, and so, although he knew arrest and imprisonment faced him, he arranged to meet his people and deliver to them a farewell address in November, 1660. At that meeting the constables found him and took him away without any resistance on his part. The government was anxious to deal liberally with Bunyan, for his fine character and good influence were both recognized, but the sturdy exhorter declined to stop his preaching and would not give the least assurance that he would not continue to spread his faith. As a consequence he was committed to the Bedford jail, where he was not kept, however, in close confinement for any great part of the time. His family were allowed to visit him, and his friends often came in numbers to listen to his addresses.

There was no time when he would not have been liberated if he had merely promised to give up his preaching. At the end of six years he was liberated, but as he began preaching at once, he was rearrested and kept for six years longer, when a general change of governmental policy sent him out into the world at forty-four years of age, free to preach when and where he wished.

Bunyan's imprisonment was of great value to him, in one respect at least, for it gave him time to read, reflect and write. That he availed himself of the privilege, his great works testify. After his release he continued his labors among his congregation, in writing, and in visiting other churches. His little blind child, who visited him so often in the jail, died; but the rest of his family lived and did well, and Bunyan must be considered a very happy man during the sixteen years he stayed in his neat little home in Bedford.

In August, 1688, he received word that a bad quarrel had taken place between a father and son, acquaintances of Bunyan, who lived at Reading. The old peacemaker went at once to the family and after much persuasion succeeded in reconciling the two and persuading the father not to disinherit the son. But this was the last charitable act of the great preacher, for in returning he was drenched to the skin in a heavy shower of wind and rain, and after a brief illness died at the home of one of his friends in London.



The Pilgrim's Progress was written while Bunyan was in the Bedford jail, and as the writer says, was written for his own amusement. Christian is Bunyan himself, and the trials and experiences of the former are but the reflections of the temptations and sufferings of the great preacher set forth in wonderfully dramatic and striking form.

At some time nearly every person reads The Pilgrim's Progress, and to those who do, Christian becomes a very real person. It is a Puritan book, pure and simple, and as such, contains some things that people of other denominations may object to, but there is so much of truth, simplicity and real human nature in it, so much that touches the spiritual experiences of all human beings, that most people, regardless of creed, are helped by it.

The Pilgrim's Progress is a very plain allegory. It describes persons and things as real and material, but always gives to everything a spiritual significance. There is no room for doubt at any time, for the names are all so aptly chosen that the meaning may be seen by any reader. Yet the allegory is so significantly true that while a child may read and enjoy it as a story and be helped by its patent truthfulness and poetry, the maturer mind may find latent truths that compensate for a more careful reading.

"As I walked through the wilderness of this world," the book begins, "I lighted on a certain place where there was a den [Footnote: The Bedford jail.] and I laid me down there to sleep, and as I slept, I dreamed a dream. I dreamed, and behold, I saw a man, a man clothed in rags, standing with his face from his own home, with a book in his hand, and a great burden upon his back. I looked and saw him open the book and read therein; and, as he read, he wept and trembled; and not being able longer to contain, he broke out with a lamentable cry, saying, 'What shall I do?'" This man is Christian, the hero of the story.


In this plight, therefore, he went home and refrained himself as long as he could, that his wife and children should not perceive his distress; but he could not be silent long, because that his trouble increased. Wherefore at length he brake his mind to his wife and children; and thus he began to talk to them:

"O my dear wife," said he, "and you, my children, I, your dear friend, am in myself undone by reason of a burden that lieth hard upon me; moreover I am for certain informed that this our city will be burned with fire from heaven, in which fearful overthrow, both myself, with thee, my wife, and you my sweet babes, shall miserably come to ruin, except (the which yet I see not) some way of escape can be found, whereby we may be delivered."

At this his relations were sore amazed; not for what they believed that what he had said to them, was true, but because they thought that some frenzy distemper had got into his head; therefore, it drawing near night, and they hoping that sleep might settle his brains, with all haste they got him to bed.

But the night was as troublesome to him as the day; wherefore, instead of sleeping, he spent it in sighs and tears. So, when the morning was. come, they would know how he did. He told them, "Worse and worse." He also set talking to them again; but they began to be hardened.

They also thought to drive away his distemper by harsh and surly carriages to him; sometimes they would deride, sometimes they would chide, and sometimes they would quite neglect him. Wherefore he began to retire himself to his chamber, to pray for and pity them, and also to condole his own misery; he would also walk solitarily in the fields, sometimes reading, and sometimes praying: and thus for some days he spent his time.

Now, I saw, upon a time, when he was walking in the fields, that he was, as he was wont, reading in his book, and greatly distressed in his mind; and as he read, he burst out, as he had done before, crying, "What shall I do to be saved?"

I saw also that he looked this way and that way, as if he would run; yet he stood still, because, as I perceived, he could not tell which way to go. I looked then, and saw a man named Evangelist coming to him, who asked, "Wherefore dost thou cry?"

He answered, "Sir, I perceive by the book in my hand that I am condemned to die, and after that to come to judgment, and I find that I am not willing to do the first, nor able to do the second."

Then said Evangelist, "Why not willing to die, since this life is attended with so many evils?" The man answered:

"Because I fear that this burden that is upon my back will sink me lower than the grave, and I shall fall into Tophet. And, sir, if I be not fit to go to prison, I am not fit, I am sure, to go to judgment, and from thence to execution; and the thoughts of these things make me cry."

Then said Evangelist, "If this be thy condition, why standest thou still?"

He answered, "Because I know not whither to go."

Then he gave him a parchment roll, and there was written within, "Flee from the wrath to come."

The man therefore read it, and looking upon Evangelist very carefully, said, "Whither must I fly?"

Then said Evangelist, pointing with his finger over a very wide field,
"Do you see yonder wicket gate?"

The man said, "No."

"Then," said the other, "Do you see yonder shining light?"

He said, "I think I do."

Then said Evangelist, "Keep that light in your eye, and go up directly thereto: so shalt thou see the Gate; at which, when thou knockest, it shall be told thee what thou shalt do."

So I saw in my dream that the man began to run. Now, he had not run far from his own door; but his wife and children, perceiving it, began to cry after him to return; but the man put his fingers in his ears, and ran on, crying, "Life! life! eternal life!"

So he looked not behind him, but fled toward the middle of the plain. The neighbors also came out to see him run, and, as he ran, some mocked, others threatened, and some cried after him to return; and, among those that did so, there were two that resolved to fetch him back by force. The name of one was Obstinate, and the other Pliable.


Obstinate argues with Christian, but gives him up in despair and returns to his home, but Pliable, thinking after all there may be some good reason in Christian's conduct, decides to accompany him to the wicket gate, and they converse on the way.


Now, I saw in my dream, that just as they had ended this talk they drew near to a very miry slough, that was in the midst of the plain; and they, being heedless, did both fall suddenly into the bog. The name of the slough was Despond. Here, therefore, they wallowed for a time, being grievously bedaubed with the dirt; and Christian, because of the burden that was on his back, began to sink in the mire. Then said Pliable, "Ah! neighbor Christian, where are you now?"

"Truly," said Christian, "I do not know."

At this Pliable began to be offended, and angrily said to his fellow, "Is this the happiness you have told me all this while of? If we have such ill-speed at our first setting out, what may we expect betwixt this and our journey's end? May I get out again with my life, you shall possess the brave country alone for me."

And, with that, he gave a desperate struggle or two, and got out of the mire on the side of the slough which was next to his own house; so away he went, and Christian saw him no more.

Wherefore, Christian was left to tumble in the Slough of Despond alone; but still he endeavored to struggle to that side of the slough that was still further from his own house, and next to the wicket gate; the which he did, but he could not get out, because of the burden that was upon his back; but I beheld in my dream, that a man came to him whose name was Help, and asked him what he did there?

"Sir," said Christian, "I was bid go this way by a man called Evangelist, who directed me also to yonder gate, that I might escape the wrath to come; and as I was going thither I fell in here."

Help. "But why did you not look for the steps?"

Chr. "Fear followed me so hard, that I fled the next way, and fell in."


Help. "Then give me thy hand." So he gave him his hand, and he drew him out, and set him upon sound ground, and bid him go on his way.

Then I stepped to him that plucked him out and said, "Sir, wherefore, since over this place is the way from the City of Destruction to yonder gate, is it that this plat is not mended, that poor travelers might go thither with more security?"

And he said unto me, "This mire slough is such a place as cannot be mended: it is the descent whither the scum and filth that attends conviction for sin doth continually run, and therefore it is called the Slough of Despond; for still as the sinner is awakened about his lost condition, there ariseth in his soul many fears, and doubts, and discouraging apprehensions, which all of them get together, and settle in this place. And this is the reason of the badness of the ground.

"It is not the pleasure of the King that this place should remain so bad. His laborers also have, by the direction of His Majesty's surveyors, been for above these sixteen hundred years employed about this patch of ground, if perhaps it might have been mended: yea, and to my knowledge," said he, "here have been swallowed up at least twenty thousand cart-loads, yea, millions of wholesome instructions, that have at all seasons been brought from all places of the King's dominions, and they that can tell say that they are the best materials to make good ground of the place, if so be it might have been mended; but it is the Slough of Despond still, and so will be when they have done what they can.

"True, there are, by the direction of the Lawgiver, certain good and substantial steps, placed even through the very midst of this slough: but at such time as this place doth much spew out its filth, as it doth against change of weather, these steps are hardly seen; or, if they be, men, through the dizziness of their heads, step beside, and then they are bemired to purpose, notwithstanding the steps be there; but the ground is good when they are once got in at the gate."

Now, I saw in my dream, that by this time Pliable was got home to his house again, so that his neighbors came to visit him; and some of them called him wise man for coming back, and some called him fool for hazarding himself with Christian; others again did mock at his cowardliness, saying, "Surely, since you began to venture, I would not have been so base as to have given out for a few difficulties." So Pliable sat sneaking among them. But at last he got more confidence, and then they all turned their tales, and began to deride poor Christian behind his back.

* * * * *

Christian proceeds on his way, meeting many persons and conversing with them, often discouraged, but always persistent in his idea of gaining Mount Zion and the holy city. The perils that he meets do not overwhelm him, and even when he is apparently doomed to certain destruction, some happy turn of events sets him again on his way rejoicing. Friends also appear to help him whenever he most needs them.


When I saw in my dream that, on the morrow, he got up to go forward, but they desired him to stay till the next day also; and then, said they, we will, if the day be clear, show you the Delectable Mountains, which, they said, would yet further add to his comfort, because they were nearer the desired haven than the place where at present he was; so he consented and stayed.


When the morning was up, they had him to the top of the house, and bid him look south; so he did; and, behold, at a great distance he saw a most pleasant mountainous country, beautified with woods, vineyards, fruits of all sorts, flowers also, with springs and fountains, very delectable to behold. Then he asked the name of the country. They said it was Emmanuel's Land; "and it is as common," said they, "as this hill is, to and for all the pilgrims. And when thou comest there from thence," said they, "thou mayest see to the gate of the Celestial City, as the shepherds that live there will make appear."

Now he bethought himself of setting forward, and they were willing he should. "But first," said they, "let us go again into the armory." So they did; and when they came there, they harnessed him from head to foot with what was of proof, lest, perhaps, he should meet with assaults in the way.

He being, therefore, thus accoutered, walketh out with his friends to the gate, and there he asked the porter if he saw a pilgrim pass by. Then the porter answered, "Yes."

Chr. "Pray, did you know him?"

Por. "I asked him his name, and he told me it was Faithful."

Chr. "Oh, I know him; he is my townsman, my near neighbor; he comes from the place where I was born. How far do you think he may be before?"

Por. "He has got by this time below the hill."

Chr. "Well, good Porter, the Lord be with thee, and add to all thy blessings much increase, for the kindness that thou hast showed to me."

Then he began to go forward; but Discretion, Piety, Charity and Prudence would accompany him down to the foot of the hill. So they went on together, reiterating their former discourses, till they came to go down the hill.

Then said Christian, "As it was difficult coming up, so, so far as I can see, it is dangerous going down." "Yes," said Prudence, "so it is; for it is a hard matter for a man to go down into the Valley of Humiliation, as thou art now, and to catch no slip by the way; therefore, are we come out to accompany thee down the hill." So he began to go down, but very warily; yet he caught a slip or two.

Then I saw in my dream that these good companions, when Christian was gone to the bottom of the hill, gave him a loaf of bread, a bottle of wine and a cluster of raisins; and then he went on his way.

But now, in this Valley of Humiliation, poor Christian was hard put to it; for he had gone but a little way, before he espied a foul fiend coming over the field to meet him; his name is Apollyon. Then did Christian begin to be afraid, and to cast in his mind whether to go back or to stand his ground. But he considered again that he had no armor for his back; and therefore thought that to turn the back to him might give him the greater advantage with ease to pierce him with his darts. Therefore he resolved to venture and stand his ground; for, thought he, had I no more in mine eye than the saving of my life, it would be the best way to stand.

So he went on and Apollyon met him. Now the monster was hideous to behold; he was clothed with scales like a fish, and (they are his pride) he had wings like a dragon, feet like a bear, and out of his belly came fire and smoke, and his mouth was as the mouth of a lion. When he was come up to Christian, he beheld him with a disdainful countenance, and thus began to question with him.

Apol. "Whence came you? and whither are you bound?"

Chr. "I am come from the City of Destruction, which is the place of all evil, and am going to the City of Zion."

Apol. "By this I perceive thou art one of my subjects, for all that country is mine, and I am the prince and god of it. How is it, then, that thou hast run away from thy king? Were it not that I hope thou mayest do me more service, I would strike thee now, at one blow, to the ground."

Chr. "I was born, indeed, in your dominions, but your service was hard, and your wages such as a man could not live on, 'for the wages of sin is death,' therefore, when I was come to years, I did as other considerate persons do, look out, if, perhaps, I might mend myself."

Apol. "There is no prince that will thus lightly lose his subjects, neither will I as yet loose thee; but since thou complainest of thy service and wages, be content to go back: what our country will afford, I do here promise to give thee."

Chr. "But I have let myself to another, even to the King of princes; and how can I, with fairness, go back with thee?"

Apol. "Thou hast done in this, according to the proverb, 'Changed a bad for a worse;' but it is ordinary for those that have professed themselves his servants, after a while to give him the slip and return again to me. Do thou so too, and all shall be well."

Chr. "I have given him my faith, and sworn my allegiance to him; how, then, can I go back from this, and not be hanged as a traitor?"

Apol. "Thou didst the same to me, and yet I am willing to pass by all, if now thou wilt yet turn again and go back."

Chr. "What I promised thee was in my nonage; and beside, I count the Prince under whose banner now I stand is able to absolve me; yea, and to pardon also what I did as to my compliance with thee; and beside, O thou destroying Apollyon! to speak truth, I like his service, his wages, his servants, his government, his company and country better than thine; and, therefore, leave off to persuade me further; I am his servant, and I will follow him."

Apol. "Consider, again, when thou art in cool blood, what thou art like to meet with in the way that thou goest. Thou knowest that, for the most part, his servants come to an ill end, because they are transgressors against me and my ways. How many of them have been put to shameful deaths; and, beside, thou countest his service better than mine, whereas he never came yet from the place where he is to deliver any that served him out of their hands; but, as for me, how many times, as all the world very well knows, have I delivered, either by power or fraud, those that have faithfully served me, from him and his, though taken by them; and so I will deliver thee."

Chr. "His forbearing at present to deliver them is on purpose to try their love, whether they will cleave to him to the end; and as for the ill end thou sayest they come to, that is most glorious in their account; for, for the present deliverance, they do not much expect it, for they stay for their glory, and then they shall have it, when their Prince comes in his and the glory of the angels."

Apol. "Thou hast already been unfaithful in thy service to him; and how dost thou think to receive wages of him?"

Chr. "Wherein, O Apollyon! have I been unfaithful to him?"

Apol. "Thou didst faint at first setting out, when thou wast almost choked in the Gulf of Despond; thou didst attempt wrong ways to be rid of thy burden, whereas thou shouldest have stayed till thy Prince had taken it off; thou didst sinfully sleep and lose thy choice thing; thou wast, also, almost persuaded to go back, at the sight of the lions; and when thou talkest of thy journey, and of what thou hast heard and seen, thou art inwardly desirous of vainglory in all that thou sayest or doest."

Chr. "All this is true, and much more which thou hast left out; but the Prince whom I serve and honor is merciful, and ready to forgive; but, besides, these infirmities possessed me in thy country, for there I sucked them in; and I have groaned under them, been sorry for them, and have obtained pardon of my Prince."

Then Apollyon broke out into a grievous rage, saying, "I am an enemy to this Prince; I hate his person, his laws, and people; I am come out on purpose to withstand thee."

Chr. "Apollyon, beware what you do; for I am in the king's highway, the way of holiness; therefore take heed to yourself."

Then Apollyon straddled quite over the whole breadth of the way, and said, "I am void of fear in this matter; prepare thyself to die; for I swear by my infernal den, that thou shalt go no further; here will I spill thy soul." And with that he threw a flaming dart at his breast; but Christian had a shield in his hand, with which he caught it, and so prevented the danger of that.

Then did Christian draw, for he saw it was time to bestir him; and Apollyon as fast made at him, throwing darts as thick as hail; by the which, notwithstanding all that Christian could do to avoid it, Apollyon wounded him in his head, his hand and his foot. This made Christian give a little back; Apollyon, therefore, followed his work amain, and Christian again took courage, and resisted as manfully as he could. This sore combat lasted for above half a day, even till Christian was almost quite spent; for you must know that Christian, by reason of his wounds, must needs grow weaker and weaker.

Then Apollyon, espying his opportunity, began to gather up close to Christian, and wrestling with him, gave him a dreadful fall; and with that Christian's sword flew out of his hand. Then said Apollyon, "I am sure of thee now."

And with that he had almost pressed him to death, so that Christian began to despair of life: but as God would have it, while Apollyon was fetching of his last blow, thereby to make a full end of this good man, Christian nimbly stretched out his hand for his sword, and caught it, saying, "Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall I shall rise," and with that gave him a deadly thrust, which made him give back, as one that had received his mortal wound.

Christian perceiving that, made at him again, saying, "Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us." And with that Apollyon spread forth his dragon's wings, and sped him away, that Christian for a season saw him no more.

In this combat no man can imagine, unless he had seen and heard as I did, what yelling and hideous roaring Apollyon made all the time of the fight—he spake like a dragon; and, on the other side, what sighs and groans burst from Christian's heart. I never saw him all the while give so much as one pleasant look, till he perceived he had wounded Apollyon with his two-edged sword; then, indeed, he did smile, and look upward; but it was the dreadfulest sight that ever I saw.

  "A more unequal match can hardly be,
  Christian must fight an Angel; but you see,
  The valiant man by handling Sword and Shield,
  Doth make him, tho' a Dragon, quit the field."

So when the battle was over, Christian said, "I will here give thanks to him that delivered me out of the mouth of the lion, to him that did help me against Apollyon." And so he did, saying—

  "Great Beelzebub, the captain of this fiend,
  Design'd my ruin; therefore to this end
  He sent him harness'd out: and he with rage,
  That hellish was, did fiercely me engage.
  But blessed Michael helped me, and I,
  By dint of sword, did quickly make him fly.
  Therefore to him let me give lasting praise,
  And thank and bless his holy name always."

Then there came to him a hand, with some of the leaves of the tree of life, the which Christian took, and applied to the wounds that he had received in the battle, and was healed immediately. He also sat down in that place to eat bread, and to drink of the bottle that was given him a little before; so, being refreshed, he addressed himself to his journey, with his sword drawn in his hand; for he said, "I know not but some other enemy may be at hand."

But he met with no other affront from Apollyon quite through this valley.

Later Christian meets Faithful, a true pilgrim, but one of a different temperament, so that his trials and other experiences have been different, but the two proceed on their journey together happy in good companionship. They pass through Vanity Fair, and Faithful is stoned to death.

After Christian's escape from Vanity Fair he is joined by Hopeful, and the two travel on as he and Faithful had done. Their trials continue but Christian finds even more help in the cheerful nature of Hopeful than in the gentle disposition of Faithful, and he looks forward without great dread to other trials which he may have to endure.


Now, I beheld in my dream, that they had not journeyed far, but the river and the way for a time parted; at which they were not a little sorry, yet they durst not go out of the way. Now the way from the river was rough, and their feet tender, by reason of their travels; "so the souls of the pilgrims were much discouraged because of the way."

Wherefore, as still they went on, they wished for a better way. Now, a little before them, there was on the left hand of the road a meadow, and a stile to go over into it; and that meadow is called By-path Meadow. Then said Christian to his fellow:

"If this meadow lieth along by our wayside, let us go over into it."

Then he went to the stile to see, and, behold, a path lay along the way, on the other side of the fence.

"It is according to my wish," said Christian. "Here is the easiest going; come, good Hopeful, and let us go over."

Hope. "But how if this path should lead us out of the way?"

Chr. "That is not like. Look, doth it not go along by the wayside?"

So Hopeful, being persuaded by his fellow, went after him over the stile. When they were gone over, and were got into the path, they found it very easy for their feet; and withal, they, looking before them, espied a man walking as they did (and his name was Vain-confidence); so they called after him, and asked him whither that way led. He said to the Celestial Gate.

"Look," said Christian, "did not I tell you so? By this you may see we are right."

So they followed and he went before them. But, behold, the night came on, and it grew very dark; so that they that were behind lost the sight of him that went before.

He, therefore, that went before (Vain-confidence by name), not seeing the way before him, fell into a deep pit, which was on purpose there made, by the prince of those grounds, to catch vainglorious fools withal, and was dashed in pieces with his fall.

Now Christian and his fellow heard him fall. So they called to know the matter, but there was none to answer, only they heard a groaning. Then said Hopeful, "Where are we now?"

Then was his fellow silent, as mistrusting that he had led him out of the way; and now it began to rain, and thunder and lightning in a very dreadful manner, and the water rose amain.

Then Hopeful groaned in himself, saying, "Oh, that I had kept on my way!"

Chr. "Who could have thought that this path should have led us out of the way?"

Hope. "I was afraid on it at the very first, and therefore gave you that gentle caution. I would have spoken plainer, but that you are older than I."

[Illustration: IN DOUBTING CASTLE ]

Chr. "Good brother, be not offended; I am sorry I have brought thee out of the way, and that I have put thee into such imminent danger. Pray, my brother, forgive me; I did not do it of an evil intent."

Hope. "Be comforted, my brother, for I forgive thee; and believe, too, that this shall be for our good."

Chr. "I am glad I have with me a merciful brother. But we must not stand thus; let us try to go back again."

Hope. "But, good brother, let me go before."

Chr. "No, if you please, let me go first; that, if there be any danger, I may be first therein, because by my means we are both gone out of the way."

Hope. "No, you shall not go first; for your mind being troubled may lead you out of the way again."

Then, for their encouragement, they heard the voice of one saying, "Set thine heart toward the highway, even the way which thou wentest; turn again."

But by this time the waters were greatly risen, by reason of which the way of going back was very dangerous. (Then I thought that it is easier going out of the way, when we are in, than going in when we are out.) Yet they adventured to go back; but it was so dark, and the flood was so high, that in their going back they had like to have been drowned nine or ten times.

Neither could they, with all the skill they had, get again to the stile that night. Wherefore, at last, lighting under a little shelter, they sat down there until the daybreak, but, being weary, they fell asleep.

Now there was not far from the place where they lay, a castle called Doubting Castle, the owner whereof was Giant Despair; and it was in his grounds they were now sleeping.

Wherefore he, getting up in the morning early, and walking up and down in his fields, caught Christian and Hopeful asleep in his grounds. Then, with a grim and surly voice, he bid them awake; and asked them whence they were, and what they did in his grounds.

They told him they were pilgrims, and that they had lost their way.

Then said the Giant, "You have this night trespassed on me, by trampling in and lying on my grounds, and therefore you must go along with me."

So they were forced to go, because he was stronger than they. They also had but little to say, for they knew themselves in a fault. The Giant, therefore, drove them before him, and put them into his castle, into a very dark dungeon, nasty and stinking to the spirits of these two men.

Here, then, they lay from Wednesday morning till Saturday night, without one bit of bread, or drop of drink, or light, or any to ask how they did; they were, therefore, here in evil case, and were far from friends and acquaintance. Now in this place Christian had double sorrow, because it was through his unadvised counsel they were brought into this distress.

"The Pilgrims now, to gratify the flesh, Will seek its ease; but oh! how they afresh Do thereby plunge themselves new griefs into; Who seek to please the flesh, themselves undo."

Now, Giant Despair had a wife, and her name was Diffidence. So when he was gone to bed, he told his wife what he had done; to-wit, that he had taken a couple of prisoners and cast them into his dungeon, for trespassing on his grounds. Then he asked her also what he had best to do further to them. So she asked him what they were, whence they came, and whither they were bound; and he told her. Then she counselled him that when he arose in the morning he should beat them without any mercy.

So, when he arose, he getteth him a grievous crabtree cudgel, and goes down into the dungeon to them, and there first falls to rating of them as if they were dogs, although they never gave him a word of distaste. Then he falls upon them, and beats them fearfully, in such sort that they were not able to help themselves, or to turn them upon the floor. This done, he withdraws and leaves them, there to condole their misery, and to mourn under their distress.

So all that day they spent the time in nothing but sighs and bitter lamentations. The next night, she, talking with her husband about them further, and understanding they were yet alive, did advise him to counsel them to make away with themselves.

So when morning was come, he goes to them in a surly manner as before, and perceiving them to be very sore with the stripes that he had given them the day before, he told them that, since they were never like to come out of that place, their only way would be forthwith to make an end of themselves, either with knife, halter, or poison. "For why," said he, "should you choose life, seeing it is attended with so much bitterness?"

But they desired him to let them go. With that he looked ugly upon them, and, rushing to them, had doubtless made an end of them himself, but that he fell into one of his fits (for he sometimes, in sunshiny weather, fell into fits), and lost for a time the use of his hand; wherefore he withdrew, and left them as before, to consider what to do. Then did the prisoners consult between themselves, whether it was best to take his counsel or no; and thus they began to discourse:

Chr. "Brother, what shall we do? The life that we now live is miserable. For my part I know not whether it is best, to live thus, or to die out of hand. 'My soul chooseth strangling rather than life,' and the grave is more easy for me than this dungeon. Shall we be ruled by the Giant?"

Hope. "Indeed, our present condition is dreadful, and death would be far more welcome to me than thus forever to abide; but yet, let us consider, the Lord of the country to which we are going hath said, 'Thou shalt do no murder;' no, not to another man's person; much more, then, are we forbidden to take his counsel to kill ourselves. Besides, he that kills another, can but commit murder upon his body; but for one to kill himself is to kill body and soul at once.

"And, moreover, my brother, thou talkest of ease in the grave; but hast thou forgotten the hell, whither for certain the murderers go? 'For no murderer hath eternal life.'

"And let us consider, again, that all the law is not in the hand of Giant Despair. Others, so far as I can understand, have been taken by him, as well as we, and yet have escaped out of his hand. Who knows but that God that made the world may cause that Giant Despair may die? or that, at some time or other, he may forget to lock us in? or that he may, in a short time, have another of his fits before us, and may lose the use of his limbs?

"And if ever that should come to pass again, for my part, I am resolved to pluck up the heart of a man and try my utmost to get from under his hand. I was a fool that I did not try to do it before; but, however, my brother, let us be patient, and endure a while. The time may come that may give us a happy release; but let us not be our own murderers."

With these words, Hopeful at present did moderate the mind of his brother; so they continued together (in the dark) that day, in their sad and doleful condition.

Well, toward evening, the Giant goes down into the dungeon again, to see if his prisoners had taken his counsel; but when he came there he found them alive; and truly, alive was all; for now, what for want of bread and water, and by reason of the wounds they received when he beat them, they could do little but breathe. But, I say, he found them alive; at which he fell into a grievous rage, and told them that, seeing they had disobeyed his counsel, it should be worse with them than if they had never been born.

At this they trembled greatly, and I think that Christian fell into a swoon; but, coming a little to himself again, they renewed their discourse about the Giant's counsel; and whether yet they had best to take it or no. Now Christian again seemed to be for doing it, but Hopeful made his second reply as followeth:

Hope. "My brother, rememberest thou not how valiant thou hast been heretofore? Apollyon could not crush thee, nor could all that thou didst hear, or see, or feel, in the Valley of the Shadow of Death. What hardship, terror, and amazement hast thou already gone through! And art thou now nothing but fear? Thou seest that I am in the dungeon with thee, a far weaker man by nature than thou art; also, this Giant has wounded me as well as thee, and hath also cut off the bread and water from my mouth; and with thee I mourn without the light. But let us exercise a little more patience: remember how thou playedst the man at Vanity Fair, and wast neither afraid of the chain, nor cage, nor yet of bloody death. Wherefore, let us (at least to avoid the shame that becomes not a Christian to be found in) bear up with patience as well as we can."

Now, night being come again, and the Giant and his wife being in bed, she asked him concerning the prisoners, and if they had taken his counsel. To which he replied, "They are sturdy rogues, they choose rather to bear all hardship, than to make away with themselves."

"Then," said she, "take them into the castleyard to-morrow, and show them the bones and skulls of those that thou hast already despatched, and make them believe, ere a week comes to an end, thou also wilt tear them in pieces, as thou hast their fellows before them."

So when the morning was come, the Giant goes to them again, and takes them into the castle-yard, and shows them, as his wife had bidden him.

"These," said he, "were pilgrims as you are, once, and they trespassed in my grounds, as you have done; and when I thought fit, I tore them in pieces, and so, within ten days, I will do you. Go, get you down to your den again;" and with that he beat them all the way thither.

They lay, therefore, all day on Saturday in a lamentable case, as before.

Now, when night was come, and when Mrs. Diffidence and her husband, the Giant, were got to bed, they began to renew their discourse of their prisoners; and withal the old Giant wondered that he could neither by his blows nor his counsel bring them to an end.

And with that his wife replied:

"I fear, that they live in hope that some will come to relieve them, or that they have picklocks about them, by the means of which they hope to escape."

"And sayest thou so, my dear?" said the Giant; "I will, therefore, search them in the morning."

Well, on Saturday, about midnight, they began to pray, and continued in prayer till almost break of day.

Now, a little before it was day, good Christian, as one half-amazed, brake out in this passionate speech:

"What a fool," quoth he, "am I, thus to lie in a stinking dungeon, when
I may as well walk at liberty! I have a key in my bosom, called
Promise, that will, I am persuaded, open any lock in Doubting Castle."

Then said Hopeful, "That is good news, good brother; pluck it out of thy bosom and try."

Then Christian pulled it out of his bosom, and began to try at the dungeon door, whose bolt (as he turned the key) gave back, and the door flew open with ease, and Christian and Hopeful both came out. Then he went to the outward door that leads into the castle-yard, and, with his key, opened that door also. After, he went to the iron gate, for that must be opened, too; but that lock went damnable hard, yet the key did open it. Then they thrust open the gate to make their escape with speed, but that gate, as it opened, made such a creaking that it waked Giant Despair, who, hastily rising to pursue his prisoners, felt his limbs to fail, for his fits took him again, so that he could by no means go after them.

Then they went on, and came to the King's highway, and so were safe, because they were out of his jurisdiction.

Now, when they were gone over the stile, they began to contrive with themselves what they should do at that stile, to prevent those that should come after from falling into the hands of Giant Despair. So they consented to erect there a pillar, and to engrave upon the side thereof this sentence—"Over this stile is the way to Doubting Castle, which is kept by Giant Despair, who despiseth the King of the Celestial Country, and seeks to destroy his holy pilgrims."

Many, therefore, that followed after, read what was written, and escaped the danger. This done, they sang as follows:

   "Out of the way we went, and then we found
   What 'twas to tread upon forbidden ground;
    And let them that come after have a care,
   Lest heedlessness makes them, as we, to fare.
   Lest they for trespassing his prisoners are,
   Whose Castle's Doubting, and whose name's Despair."

Having escaped from Doubting Castle they continue their perilous way, ever drawing nearer to the Celestial City, and ever growing more impatient for the end of their pilgrimage.


Now I saw in my dream, that by this time the Pilgrims were got over the Enchanted Ground, and entering into the country of Beulah, whose air was very sweet and pleasant, the way lying directly through it, they solaced themselves there for a season. Yea, here they heard continually the singing of birds, and saw every day the flowers appear in the earth, and heard the voice of the turtle in the land. In this country the sun shineth night and day; wherefore this was beyond the Valley of the Shadow of Death, and also out of the reach of Giant Despair, neither could they from this place so much as see Doubting Castle.

Here they were within sight of the city they were going to, also here met them some of the inhabitants thereof; for in this land the Shining Ones commonly walked, because it was on the borders of heaven. In this land, also, the contract between the bride and the bridegroom was renewed; yea, here, "As the bridegroom rejoiceth over the bride, so did their God rejoice over them." Here they had no want of corn and wine; for in this place they met with abundance of what they had sought for in all their pilgrimage.

Here they heard voices from out of the city, loud voices, saying, "Say ye to the daughter of Zion, Behold, thy salvation cometh! Behold, his reward is with him!" Here all the inhabitants of the country called them, "The holy people, The redeemed of the Lord sought out," etc.

[Illustration: The Celestial City]

Now, as they walked in this land, they had more rejoicing than in parts more remote from the kingdom to which they were bound; and drawing near to the city, they had yet a more perfect view thereof. It was builded of pearls and precious stones, also the street thereof was paved with gold; so by reason of the natural glory of the city, and the reflection of the sunbeams upon it, Christian with desire fell sick; Hopeful also had a fit or two of the same disease. Wherefore, here they lay by it a while, crying out, because of their pangs, "If ye find my beloved, tell him that I am sick of love."

But, being a little strengthened, and better able to bear their sickness, they walked on their way, and came yet nearer and nearer, where were orchards, vineyards, and gardens, and their gates opened into the highway. Now, as they came up to these places, behold the gardener stood in the way, to whom the pilgrims said, "Whose goodly vineyards and gardens are these?" He answered, "They are the King's, and are planted here for his own delight, and also for the solace of pilgrims." So the gardener had them into the vineyards, and bid them refresh themselves with the dainties. He also showed them there the King's walks, and the arbors where he delighted to be; and here they tarried and slept.

Now, I beheld in my dream, that they talked more in their sleep at this time than ever they did in all their journey; and being in a muse thereabout, the gardener said even to me, "Wherefore musest thou at the matter? It is the nature of the fruit of the grapes of these vineyards to go down so sweetly as to cause the lips of them that are asleep to speak."

So I saw that when they awoke, they addressed themselves to go up to the city; but, as I said, the reflection of the sun upon the city (for "the city was pure gold") was so extremely glorious, that they could not, as yet, with open face behold it, but through an instrument made for that purpose.

So I saw that, as they went on, there met them two men, in raiment that shone like gold; also their faces shone as the light. These men asked the pilgrims whence they came; and they told them. They also asked them where they had lodged, what difficulties and dangers, what comforts and pleasures they had met in the way; and they told them.

Then said the men that met them, "You have but two difficulties more to meet with, and then you are in the city."

Christian, then, and his companion, asked the men to go along with them; so they told them they would.

"But," said they, "you must obtain it by your own faith."

So I saw in my dream that they went on together, until they came in sight of the gate.

Now, I further saw, that betwixt them and the gate was a river, but there was no bridge to go over, and the river was very deep. At the sight, therefore, of this river, the Pilgrims were much stunned; but the men that went with them said, "You must go through, or you cannot come at the gate."

The pilgrims then began to inquire if there was no other way to the gate; to which they answered, "Yes; but there hath not any, save two, to-wit, Enoch and Elijah, been permitted to tread that path, since the foundation of the world, nor shall, until the last trumpet shall sound."

The Pilgrims then (especially Christian) began to despond in their minds, and looked this way and that, but no way could be found by them by which they might escape the river. Then they asked the men if the waters were all of a depth.

They said, "No;" yet they could not help them in the case; "for," said they, "you shall find it deeper or shallower as you believe in the King of the place."

They then addressed themselves to the water; and entering, Christian began to sink, and crying out to his good friend Hopeful, he said, "I sink in deep waters; the billows go over my head, all His waves go over me! Selah."

Then said the other, "Be of good cheer, my brother, I feel the bottom, and it is good."

Then said Christian, "Ah! my friend, 'the sorrows of death have compassed me about;' I shall not see the land that flows with milk and honey;" and with that a great darkness and horror fell upon Christian, so that he could not see before him. Also here he in a great measure lost his senses, so that he could neither remember nor orderly talk of any of those sweet refreshments that he had met with in the way of his pilgrimage.

But all the words that he spake still tended to discover that he had horror of mind, and heart-fears that he should die in that river, and never obtain entrance in at the gate. Here, also, as they that stood by perceived, he was much in the troublesome thoughts of the sins that he had committed, both since and before he began to be a pilgrim. It was also observed that he was troubled with apparitions of hobgoblins and evil spirits, for ever and anon he would intimate so much by words.

Hopeful, therefore, here had much ado to keep his brother's head above water; yea, sometimes he would be quite gone down, and then, ere a while, he would rise up again half dead. Hopeful also did endeavor to comfort him, saying, "Brother, I see the gate, and men standing by to receive us;" but Christian would answer, "It is you, it is you they wait for; you have been Hopeful ever since I knew you."

"And so have you," said he to Christian.

"Ah, brother;" said he, "surely if I was right, He would now arise to help me; but for my sins He hath brought me into the snare, and hath left me."

Then said Hopeful, "My brother, you have quite forgot the text, where it is said of the wicked, 'There are no bands in their death, but their strength is firm. They are not in trouble as other men, neither are they plagued like other men.' These troubles and distresses that you go through in these waters are no sign that God hath forsaken you, but are sent to try you, whether you will call to mind that which heretofore you have received of his goodness, and live upon him in your distresses."

Then I saw in my dream, that Christian was as in a muse a while. To whom also Hopeful added this word, "Be of good cheer, Jesus Christ maketh thee whole;" and with that Christian brake out with a loud voice, "Oh! I see Him again, and He tells me, 'When thou passeth through the waters I will be with thee; and through the river, they shall not overflow thee.'"

Then they both took courage, and the enemy was after that as still as a stone, until they were gone over. Christian therefore presently found ground to stand upon, and so it followed that the rest of the river was but shallow.

Thus they got over.

Now, upon the bank of the river, on the other side, they saw the two Shining Men again, who there waited for them, wherefore, being come out of the river, they saluted them, saying, "We are ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for those that shall be heirs of salvation."

Thus they went along toward the gate.

Now you must note that the City stood upon a mighty hill, but the Pilgrims went up that hill with ease, because they had these two men to lead them up by the arms; also, they had left their mortal garments behind them in the river, for though they went in with them, they came out without them. They, therefore, went up here with much agility and speed, though the foundation upon which the City was framed was higher than the clouds. They therefore went up through the regions of the air, sweetly talking as they went, being comforted, because they safely got over the river, and had such glorious companions to attend them.

Now while they were thus drawing toward the gate, behold a company of the heavenly host came out to meet them: to whom it was said, by the other two Shining Ones, "These are the men that have loved our Lord when they were in the world, and that have left all for His holy name; and He hath sent us to fetch them, and we have brought them thus far on their desired journey, that they may go in and look their Redeemer in the face with joy."

Then the heavenly host gave a great shout saying, "Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb." There came out also at this time to meet them, several of the king's trumpeters, clothed in white and shining raiment, who, with melodious noises, and loud, made even the heavens to echo with their sound. These trumpeters saluted Christian and his fellow with ten thousand welcomes from the world; and this they did with shouting and sound of trumpet.

This done, they compassed them round on every side; some went before, some behind, and some on the right hand, some on the left (as it were to guard them through the upper regions), continually sounding as they went, with melodious noise, in notes on high; so that the very sight was to them that could behold it as if heaven itself was come down to meet them. Thus, therefore, they walked on together; and as they walked, ever and anon, these trumpeters, even with joyful sound, would, by mixing their music with looks and gestures, still signify to Christian and his brother how welcome they were into their company, and with what gladness they came to meet them.

And now were these two men, as it were, in heaven, before they came at it, being swallowed up with the sight of angels, and with hearing of their melodious notes. Here also they had the City itself in view, and they thought they heard all the bells therein to ring to welcome them thereto. But above all, the warm and joyful thoughts that they had about their own dwelling there, with such company, and that for ever and ever. Oh, by what tongue or pen can their glorious joy be expressed! And thus they came up to the gate.

Now, when they were come up to the gate, there was written over it in letters of gold, "Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the City."

Then I saw in my dream that the Shining Men bid them call at the gate; the which, when they did, some looked from over the gate, to-wit, Enoch, Moses and Elijah, etc., to whom it was said, "These pilgrims are come from the City of Destruction, for the love that they bear to the King of this place;" and then the pilgrims gave in unto them each man his certificate, which they had received in the beginning; those, therefore, were carried in to the King, who, when he had read them, said, "Where are the men?"

To whom it was answered, "They are standing without the gate."

The King then commanded to open the gate, "That the righteous nation," said he, "which keepeth the truth may enter in."

Now I saw in my dream that these two men went in at the gate: and lo, as they entered, they were transfigured, and they had raiment put on that shone like gold. There were also that met them with harps and crowns, and gave them to them—the harps to praise withal, and the crowns in token of honor.

Then I heard in my dream that all the bells in the city rang again for joy, and that it was said unto them, "Enter ye into the joy of your Lord."

I also heard the men themselves, that they sang with a loud voice, saying, "Blessing, and honor, and glory, and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever."

Now, just as the gate were opened to let in the men, I looked in after them, and, behold, the City shone like the sun; the streets also were paved with gold, and in them walked many men, with crowns on their heads, palms in their hands, and golden harps to sing praises withal.

There were also of them that had wings, and they answered one another without intermission, saying, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord." And after that they shut up the gates; which, when I had seen, I wished myself among them.

AWAY [Footnote: From Afterichiles, by James Whitcomb Riley, copyright 1887.]


  I cannot say, and I will not say,
  That he is dead.—He is just away!

  With a cheery smile and a wave of the hand,
  He has wandered into an unknown land,

  And left us dreaming how very fair
  It needs must be, since he lingers there.

  And you—oh you, who the wildest yearn
  For the old-time step and the glad return,—

  Think of him faring on, as dear
  In the love of There as the love of Here;

  And loyal still, as he gave the blows
  Of his warrior strength to his country's foes.—

  Mild and gentle, as he was brave,—
  When the sweetest love of his life he gave

  To simple things;—Where the violets grew
  Pure as the eyes they were likened to,

  The touches of his hand have strayed
  As reverently as his lips have prayed:

  When the little brown thrush that harshly chirred
  Was dear to him as the mocking-bird;

  And he pitied as much as a man in pain
  A writhing honey-bee wet with rain.—

  Think of him still as the same, I say;
  He is not dead—he is just away!


  Out of the focal and foremost fire,
  Out of the hospital walls as dire,
  Smitten of grape-shot and gangrene—
  Eighteenth battle and he sixteen—
  Spectre such as you seldom see,
  Little Giffin of Tennessee.

  "Take him and welcome," the surgeon said,
  "But much your doctor can help the dead!"
  And so we took him and brought him where
  The balm was sweet on the summer air;
  And we laid him down on a lonesome bed,
  Utter Lazarus, heels to head.

  Weary war with bated breath!
  Skeleton Boy against skeleton Death!
  Months of torture, how many such!
  Weary weeks of the stick and crutch!
  And still the glint of the steel-blue eye
  Told of a spirit that wouldn't die,

  And didn't—nay more, in Death's despite
  The crippled skeleton learned to write.
  "Dear Mother," at first, of course, and then,
  "Dear Captain," asking about the men.
  Captain's answer, "Of eighty and five,
  Giffin and I are still alive."

  "Johnston's pressed at the front," they say—
  Little Giffin was up and away.
  A tear, the first, as he bade good-bye,
  Dimmed the glint of his steel-blue eye.
  "I'll write, if spared."—There was news of fight,
  But none of Giffin—he didn't write.

  I sometimes fancy that when I'm king,
  And my gallant courtiers form a ring,
  Each so careless of power and pelf,
  Each so thoughtful for all but self,
  I'd give the best on his bended knee—
  Yes, barter them all, for the loyalty
  Of Little Giffin of Tennessee.



By JOHN HAY [Footnote: John Hay was born in Indiana, and in 1861 became the law- partner of Abraham Lincoln, and for the greater part of the time during the latter's life as president of the United States, acted as his private secretary. After the War he held various political offices and was an editorial Writer on the New York Tribune. He became known for his unusual tact and foresight, and finally became secretary of state.

He is well known, too, for his writings, the most notable of which is
his Abraham Lincoln, which was written in company with John G Nicolay.
Besides this he wrote a number of humorous poems, of which Little
is perhaps the best known.]

  I don't go much on religion,
    I never ain't had no show;
  But I've got a middlin' tight grip, sir,
    On the handful o' things I know.
  I don't pan out on the prophets
    And free-will, and that sort of thing,—
  But I b'lieve in God and the angels,
    Ever sence one night last spring.

[Illustration: Went team, Little Breeches, and all]

  I come into town with some turnips,
    And my little Gabe come along,—
  No four-year-old in the country
    Could beat him for pretty and strong,
  Peart and chipper and sassy,
    Always ready to swear and fight,—
  And I'd larnt him ter chaw terbacker,
    Jest to keep his milk-teeth white.

  The snow come down like a blanket
    As I passed by Taggart's store;
  I went in for a jug of molasses
    And left the team at the door.
  They scared at something and started,—
    I heard one little squall,
  And hell-to-split over the prairie
    Went team, Little Breeches and all.

  Hell-to-split over the prairie!
    I was almost froze with skeer;
  But we rousted up some torches,
    And sarched for 'em far and near.
  At last we struck hosses and wagon,
    Snowed under a soft white mound,
  Upsot, dead beat,—but of little Gabe
    No hide nor hair was found.

  And here all hope soured on me
    Of my fellow-critter's aid,—
  I jest flopped down on my marrow-bones,
    Crotch-deep in the snow, and prayed.
       * * * * *
  By this, the torches was played out,
    And me and Isrul Parr
  Went off for some wood to a sheepfold
    That he said was somewhar thar.
  We found it at last, and a little shed
    Where they shut up the lambs at night.
  We looked in, and seen them huddled thar,
    So warm and sleepy and white;

  And THAR sot Little Breeches and chirped,
    As peart as ever you see,
  "I want a chaw of terbacker,
    And that's what's the matter of me."

  How did he git thar? Angels.
    He could never have walked in that storm.
  They jest scooped down and toted him
    To whar it was safe and warm.

  And I think that saving a little child,
    And bringing him to his own,
  Is a derned sight better business
    Than loafing around the Throne.

This little poem is an imitation of what was the rude dialect of some parts of Pike County, Indiana. One must not be too critical of the roughness and the apparent irreverence of some of the lines, for the sentiment is a pleasing one. An ignorant man who believes in "God and the angels" may be forgiven for the crudity of his ideas, and the mistakes he makes in bringing up his boy, especially as he "never ain't had no show."



  'Twas on the shores that round our coasts
    From Deal to Ramsgate span,
  That I found alone, on a piece of stone,
    An elderly naval man.

  His hair was weedy, his beard was long,
    And weedy and long was he;
  And I heard this wight on the shore recite,
    In a singular minor key:—

  "O, I am a cook and a captain bold,
    And the mate of the Nancy brig,
  And a bo'sun tight, and a midshipmite,
    And the crew of the captain's gig."

  And he shook his fists and he tore his hair
    Till I really felt afraid,
  For I couldn't help thinking the man had been drinking,
    And so I simply said:—

  "O elderly man, it's little I know
    Of the duties of men of the sea,
  And I'll eat my hand if I understand
    How you can possibly be

  "At once a cook and a captain bold,
    And the mate of the Nancy brig,
  And a bo'sun tight, and a midshipmite,
    And the crew of the captain's gig!"

  Then he gave a hitch to his trousers, which
    Is a trick all seamen larn,
  And having got rid of a thumping quid
    He spun this painful yarn:—

  "'Twas in the good ship Nancy Bell
    That we sailed to the Indian sea,
  And there on a reef we come to grief,
    Which has often occurred to me.

  "And pretty nigh all o' the crew was drowned
    (There was seventy-seven o' soul);
  And only ten of the Nancy's men
    Said 'Here' to the muster-roll.

  "There was me, and the cook, and the captain bold,
    And the mate of the Nancy brig,
  And a bo'sun tight and a midshipmite,
    And the crew of the captain's gig.

  "For a month we'd neither wittles nor drink,
    Till a hungry we did feel,
  So we drawed a lot, and, accordin', shot
    The captain for our meal.

  "The next lot fell to the Nancy's mate,
    And a delicate dish he made;
  Then our appetite with the midshipmite
    We seven survivors stayed.

  "And then we murdered the bo'sun tight,
    And he much resembled pig;
  Then we wittled free, did the cook and me.
    On the crew of the captain's gig.


  "Then only the cook and me was left,
    And the delicate question, 'Which
  Of us two goes to the kettle?' arose,
    And we argued it out as such.

  "For I loved that cook as a brother, I did,
    And the cook he worshipped me;
  But we'd both be blowed if we'd either be stowed
    In the other chap's hold, you see.

  "'I'll be eat if you dines off me,' says Tom.
    'Yes, that,' says I, 'you'll be.
  I'm boiled if I die, my friend,' quoth I;
    And 'Exactly so,' quoth he.

  "Say he: 'Dear James, to murder me
    Were a foolish thing to do,
  For don't you see that you can't cook me,
    While I can—and will—cook you?'

  "So he boils the water, and takes the salt
    And the pepper in portions true
  (Which he never forgot), and some chopped shalot,
    And some sage and, parsley too.

  "'Come here,' says he, with proper pride,
    Which his smiling features tell;
  "'Twill soothing be if I let you see
    How extremely nice you'll smell.'

  "And he stirred it round, and round, and round,
    And he sniffed at the foaming froth;
  When I ups with his heels, and smothers his squeals
    In the scum of the boiling broth.

  "And I eat that cook in a week or less,
    And as I eating be
  The last of his chops, why I almost drops,
    For a wessel in sight I see.

* * * * *

  "And I never larf, and I never smile,
    And I never lark nor play;
  But I sit and croak, and a single joke
    I have—which is to say:

  "O, I am a cook and a captain bold
    And the mate of the Nancy brig,
  And a bo'sun tight, and a midshipmite,
    And the crew of the captain's gig!"



  Och, girls, did you ever hear
    I wrote my love a letter?
  And altho' he cannot read,
    I thought 'twas all the better.
  For why should be he puzzled
    With spellin' in the matter,
  When the manin' was so plain
    I loved him faithfully,
        And he knows it—oh, he knows it—
  Without one word from me.

  I wrote it, and I folded it,
    And put a seal upon it,
  'Twas a seal almost as big
    As the crown of my best bonnet;
  For I wouldn't have the postman
    Make his remarks upon it,
  As I'd said inside the letter
    I loved him faithfully,
        And he knows it—oh, he knows it—
    Without one word from me.

  My heart was full, but when I wrote
    I dare not put the half in;
  For the neighbors know I love him,
    And they're mighty found of chaffin',
  So I dare not write his name outside,
    For fear they would be laughin',
  But wrote, "From little Kate to one
    Whom she loves faithfully,"
  And he knows it—oh, he knows it—
    Without one word from me.

  Now, girls, would you believe it,
    That postman so consated,
  No answer will he bring me,
    So long have I waited?
  But maybe—there mayn't be one,
    Because—as I have stated—
  My love can neither read nor write,
    But he loves me faithfully,
  And I know, where'er my love is,
    That he is true to me.

THE ARICKARA INDIANS [Footnote: This description is taken from. Irving's Astoria, an account of early explorations in the Northwest, undertaken under the management of John Jacob Astor.]


The village of the Rikaras, [Footnote: The Arickaras, or Rees as they are now sometimes called, are reduced to a few hundred persons who are, with the Mandans and other Indians, on a reservation in North Dakota.] Arickaras, or Ricarees, for the name is thus variously written, is between the 46th and 47th parallels of north latitude, and fourteen hundred and thirty miles above the mouth of the Missouri. [Footnote: This would place the village somewhere near the present site of Bismarck, North Dakota.] The party reached it about ten o'clock in the morning, but landed on the opposite side of the river, where they spread out their baggage and effects to dry. From hence they commanded an excellent view of the village. It was divided into two portions, about eighty yards apart, being inhabited by two distinct bands. The whole extended about three quarters of a mile along the river bank, and was composed of conical lodges, that looked like so many small hillocks, being wooden frames intertwined with osier, and covered with earth. The plain beyond the village swept up into hills of considerable height, but the whole country was nearly destitute of trees.

While they were regarding the village, they beheld a singular fleet coming down the river. It consisted of a number of canoes, each made of a single buffalo hide stretched on sticks, so as to form a kind of circular trough. Each one was navigated by a single squaw, who knelt in the bottom and paddled, towing after her frail bark a bundle of floating wood intended for firing. This kind of canoe is in frequent use among the Indians; the buffalo hide being readily made up into a bundle and transported on horseback; it is very serviceable in conveying baggage across the rivers.

The great numbers of horses grazing around the village, and scattered over the neighboring hills and valleys, bespoke the equestrian habits of the Arickaras, who are admirable horsemen. Indeed, in the number of his horses consists the wealth of an Indian of the prairies; who resembles an Arab in his passion for this noble animal, and in his adroitness in the management of it.

After a time, the voice of the sovereign chief, "the Left-handed," was heard across the river, announcing that the council lodge was preparing and inviting the white men to come over. The river was half a mile in width, yet every word uttered by the chieftain was heard; this may be partly attributed to the distinct manner in which every syllable of the compound words in the Indian language is articulated and accented; but in truth, a savage warrior might often rival Achilles himself for force of lungs.

The explorers landed amid a rabble crowd, and were received on the bank by the left-handed chief, who conducted them into the village with grave courtesy; driving to the right and left the swarms of old squaws, imp-like boys, and vagabond dogs, with which the place abounded. They wound their way between the cabins, which looked like dirt-heaps huddled together without any plan, and surrounded by old palisades; all filthy in the extreme, and redolent of villainous smells.

At length they arrived at the council lodge. It was somewhat spacious, and formed of four forked trunks of trees placed upright, supporting crossbeams and a frame of poles interwoven with osiers, and the whole covered with earth. A hole sunken in the centre formed the fireplace, and immediately above was a circular hole in the apex of the lodge, to let out the smoke and let in the daylight. Around the lodge were recesses for sleeping, like the berths on board ships, screened from view by curtains of dressed skins. At the upper end of the lodge was a kind of hunting and warlike trophy, consisting of two buffalo heads garishly painted, surmounted by shields, bows, quivers of arrows, and other weapons.

On entering the lodge the chief pointed to mats or cushions which had been placed around for the strangers, and on which they seated themselves, while he placed himself on a kind of stool. An old man then came forward with the pipe of peace or good-fellowship, lighted and handed it to the chief, and then falling back, squatted himself near the door. The pipe was passed from mouth to mouth, each one taking a whiff, which is equivalent to the inviolable pledge of faith, of taking salt together among the ancient Britons. The chief then made a sign to the old pipe-bearer, who seemed to fill, likewise, the station of herald, seneschal, and public crier, for he ascended to the top of the lodge to make proclamation. Here he took his post beside the aperture for the emission of smoke and the admission of light; the chief dictated from within what he was to proclaim, and he bawled it forth with a force of lungs that resounded over all the village. In this way he summoned the warriors and great men to council; every now and then reporting progress to his chief through the hole in the roof.

In a little while the braves and sages began to enter one by one as their names were called or announced, emerging from under the buffalo robe suspended over the entrance instead of a door, stalking across the lodge to the skins placed on the floor, and crouching down on them in silence. In this way twenty entered and took their seats, forming an assemblage worthy of the pencil; for the Arickaras are a noble race of men, large and well formed, and maintain a savage grandeur and gravity of demeanor in their solemn ceremonials.

All being seated, the old seneschal prepared the pipe of ceremony or council, and having lit it, handed it to the chief. He inhaled the sacred smoke, gave a puff upward to the heaven, then downward to the earth, then toward the east; after this it was as usual passed from mouth to mouth, each holding it respectfully until his neighbor had taken several whiffs; and now the grand council was considered as opened in due form.

The chief made an harangue welcoming the white men to his village, and expressing his happiness in taking them by the hand as friends; but at the same time complaining of the poverty of himself and his people; the usual prelude among Indians to begging or hard bargaining.

Mr. Hunt then spoke, declaring the object of his journey to the great Salt Lake beyond the mountains, and that he should want horses for the purpose, for which he was ready to trade, having brought with him plenty of goods. He concluded his speech by making presents of tobacco.

The left-handed chieftain in reply promised his friendship and aid to the new-comers, and welcomed them to his village. He added that they had not the number of horses to spare that Mr. Hunt required, and expressed a doubt whether they should be able to part with any. Upon this, another chieftain, called Gray Eyes, made a speech, and declared that they could readily supply Mr. Hunt with all the horses he might want, since, if they had not enough in the village, they could easily steal more. This honest expedient immediately removed the main difficulty; but the chief deferred all trading for a day or two, until he should have time to consult with his subordinate chiefs, as to market rates; for the principal chief of a village, in conjunction with his council, usually fixes the prices at which articles shall be bought and sold, and to them the village must conform.

The council now broke up. Mr. Hunt transferred his camp across the river at a little distance below the village, and the left-handed chief placed some of his warriors as a guard to prevent the intrusion of any of his people. The camp was pitched on the river bank just above the boats. The tents, and the men wrapped in their blankets and bivouacking on skins in the open air, surrounded the baggage at night. Four sentinels also kept watch within sight of each other outside of the camp until midnight, when they were relieved by four others who mounted guard until daylight.

[Illustration: TRADING FOR HORSES]

A trade now commenced with the Arickaras under the regulation and supervision of their two chieftains. Mr. Hunt established his mart in the lodge of the Big Man. The village soon presented the appearance of a busy fair; and as horses were in demand, the purlieus and the adjacent plain were like the vicinity of a Tartar encampment; horses were put through all paces, and horsemen were careering about with that dexterity and grace for which the Arickaras are noted. As soon as a horse was purchased, his tail was cropped, a sure mode of distinguishing him from the horses of the tribe; for the Indians disdain to practice this absurd, barbarous, and indecent mutilation, invented by some mean and vulgar mind, insensible to the merit and perfections of the animal. On the contrary, the Indian horses are suffered to remain in every respect the superb and beautiful animals which nature formed them.

The wealth of an Indian of the far west consists principally in his horses, of which each chief and warrior possesses a great number, so that the plains about an Indian village or encampment are covered with them. These form objects of traffic or objects of depredation, and in this way pass from tribe to tribe over great tracts of country. The horses owned by the Arickaras are, for the most part, of the wild stock of the prairies; some, however, had been obtained from the Poncas, Pawnees, and other tribes to the southwest, who had stolen them from the Spaniards in the course of horse-stealing expeditions into the Mexican territories. These were to be known by being branded, a Spanish mode of marking horses not practised by the Indians.

As the Arickaras were meditating another expedition against their enemies the Sioux, the articles of traffic most in demand were guns, tomahawks, scalping-knives, powder, ball; and other munitions of war. The price of a horse, as regulated by the chiefs, was commonly ten dollars' worth of goods at first cost. To supply the demand thus suddenly created, parties of young men and braves had sallied forth on expeditions to steal horses; a species of service among the Indians which takes precedence of hunting, and is considered a department of honorable warfare.

While the leaders of the expedition were actively engaged in preparing for the approaching journey, those who had accompanied it for curiosity or amusement, found ample matter for observation in the village and its inhabitants. Wherever they went they were kindly entertained. If they entered a lodge, the buffalo robe was spread before the fire for them to sit down; the pipe was brought, and while the master of the lodge conversed with his guests, the squaw put the earthen vessel over the fire, well filled with dried buffalo meat and pounded corn; for the Indian in his native state, before he has mingled much with white men, and acquired their sordid habits, has the hospitality of the Arab; never does a stranger enter his door without having food placed before him; and never is the food thus furnished made a matter of traffic.

The life of an Indian when at home in his village is a life of indolence and amusement. To the woman is consigned the labors of the household and the field; she arranges the lodge; brings wood for the fire; cooks; jerks venison and buffalo meat; dresses the skins of the animals killed in the chase; cultivates the little patch of maize, pumpkins, and pulse, which furnishes a great part of their provisions. Their time for repose and recreation is at sunset, when, the labors of the day being ended, they gather together to amuse themselves with petty games, or hold gossiping convocations on the tops of their lodges.

As to the Indian, he is a game animal, not to be degraded by useful or menial toil. It is enough that he exposes himself to the hardships of the chase and the perils of war; that he brings home food for his family, and watches and fights for its protection. Everything else is beneath his attention. When at home he attends only to his weapons and his horses, preparing the means of future exploit. Or he engages with his comrades in games of dexterity, agility and strength; or in gambling games in which everything is put at hazard, with a recklessness seldom witnessed in civilized life.

A great part of the idle leisure of the Indians when at home is passed in groups, squatted together on the bank of a river, on the top of a mound on the prairie, or on the roof of one of their earth-covered lodges, talking over the news of the day, the affairs of the tribe, the events and exploits of their last hunting or fighting expedition; or listening to the stories of old times told by some veteran chronicler; resembling a group of our village quidnuncs and politicians, listening to the prosings of some superannuated oracle, or discussing the contents of an ancient newspaper.

As to the Indian women, they are far from complaining of their lot. On the contrary, they would despise their husbands should they stoop to any menial office, and would think it conveyed an imputation upon their own conduct. It is the worst insult one virago can cast upon another in a moment of altercation. "Infamous woman!" will she cry, "I have seen your husband carrying wood into his lodge to make the fire. Where was his squaw that he should be obliged to make a woman of himself?"

Mr. Hunt and his fellow-travellers had not been many days at the Arickara village, when rumors began to circulate that the Sioux had followed them up, and that a war party, four or five hundred in number, were lurking somewhere in the neighborhood. These rumors produced much embarrassment in the camp. The white hunters were deterred from venturing forth in quest of game, neither did the leaders think it proper to expose them to such risk. The Arickaras, too, who had suffered greatly in their wars with this cruel and ferocious tribe, were roused to increased vigilance, and stationed mounted scouts upon the neighboring hills. This, however, is a general precaution among the tribes of the prairies. Those immense plains present a horizon like the ocean, so that any object of importance can be descried afar, and information communicated to a great distance. The scouts are stationed on the hills, therefore, to look out both for game and for enemies, and are, in a manner, living telegraphs conveying their intelligence by concerted signs. If they wish to give notice of a herd of buffalo in the plain beyond, they gallop backward and forward abreast, on the summit of the hill. If they perceive an enemy at hand they gallop to and fro, crossing each other; at sight of which the whole village flies to arms.

Such an alarm was given in the afternoon of the 15th. Four scouts were seen crossing and recrossing each other at full gallop, on the summit of a hill about two miles distant down the river. The cry was up that the Sioux were coming. In an instant the village was in an uproar. Men, women, and children were all brawling and shouting; dogs barking, yelping, and howling. Some of the warriors ran for the horses to gather and drive them in from the prairie, some for their weapons. As fast as they could arm and equip they sallied forth; some on horseback, some on foot; some hastily arrayed in their war dress, with coronets of fluttering feathers, and their bodies smeared with paint; others naked and only furnished with the weapons they had snatched up. The women and children gathered on the tops of the lodges and heightened the confusion of the scene by their vociferation. Old men who could no longer bear arms took similar stations, and harangued the warriors as they passed, exhorting them to valorous deeds. Some of the veterans took arms themselves, and sallied forth with tottering steps. In this way, the savage chivalry of the village to the number of five hundred, poured forth, helter-skelter, riding and running, with hideous yells and war-whoops, like so many bedlamites or demoniacs let loose.

After a while the tide of war rolled back, but with far less uproar. Either it had been a false alarm, or the enemy had retreated on finding themselves discovered, and quiet was restored to the village. The white hunters continuing to be fearful of ranging this dangerous neighborhood, fresh provisions began to be scarce in the camp. As a substitute, therefore, for venison and buffalo meat, the travellers had to purchase a number of dogs to be shot and cooked for the supply of the camp. Fortunately, however chary the Indians might be of their horses, they were liberal of their dogs. In fact, these animals swarm about an Indian village as they do about a Turkish town. Not a family but has two or three dozen belonging to it of all sizes and colors; some, of a superior breed, are used for hunting; others, to draw the sledge, while others, of a mongrel breed, and idle vagabond nature, are fattened for food. They are supposed to be descended from the wolf, and retain something of his savage but cowardly temper, howling rather than barking, showing their teeth and snarling on the slightest provocation, but sneaking away on the least attack.

The excitement of the village continued from day to day. On the day following the alarm just mentioned, several parties arrived from different directions, and were met and conducted by some of the braves to the council lodge, where they reported the events and success of their expeditions, whether of war or hunting; which news was afterward promulgated throughout the village, by certain old men who acted as heralds or town criers. Among the parties which arrived was one that had been among the Snake nation stealing horses, and returned crowned with success. As they passed in triumph through the village they were cheered by the men, women, and children, collected as usual on the tops of the lodges, and were exhorted by the Nestors of the village to be generous in their dealings with the white men.

The evening was spent in feasting and rejoicing among the relations of the successful warriors; but sounds of grief and wailing were heard from the hills adjacent to the village: the lamentations of women who had lost some relative in the foray.

An Indian village is subject to continual agitations and excitements. The next day arrived a deputation of braves from the Cheyenne or Shienne nation; a broken tribe, cut up, like the Arickaras, by wars with the Sioux, and driven to take refuge among the Black Hills, near the sources of the Cheyenne River, from which they derive their name. One of these deputies was magnificently arrayed in a buffalo robe, on which various figures were fancifully embroidered with split quills dyed red and yellow; and the whole was fringed with the slender hoofs of young fawns, and rattled as he walked.

The arrival of this deputation was the signal for another of those ceremonies which occupy so much of Indian life; for no being is more courtly and punctilious, and more observing of etiquette and formality than an American savage.

The object of the deputation was to give notice of an intended visit of the Shienne (or Cheyenne) tribe to the Arickara village in the course of fifteen days. To this visit Mr. Hunt looked forward, to procure additional horses for his journey; all his bargaining being ineffectual in obtaining a sufficient supply from the Arickaras. Indeed nothing could prevail upon the latter to part with their prime horses, which had been trained to buffalo hunting.

On the 9th of July, just before daybreak, a great noise and vociferation was heard in the village. This being the usual Indian hour of attack and surprise, and the Sioux being known to be in the neighborhood, the camp was instantly on the alert. As the day broke Indians were descried in considerable numbers on the bluffs, three or four miles down the river. The noise and agitation in the village continued. The tops of the lodges were crowded with the inhabitants, all earnestly looking toward the hills, and keeping up a vehement chattering. Presently an Indian warrior galloped past the camp toward the village, and in a little while the legions began to pour forth.

The truth of the matter was now ascertained. The Indians upon the distant hills were three hundred Arickara braves returning from a foray. They had met the war party of Sioux who had been so long hovering about the neighborhood, had fought them the day before, killed several, and defeated the rest with the loss of but two or three of their own men and about a dozen wounded; and they were now halting at a distance until their comrades in the village should come forth to meet them, and swell the parade of their triumphal entry. The warrior who had galloped past the camp was the leader of the party hastening home to give tidings of his victory.

Preparations were now made for this great martial ceremony. All the finery and equipments of the warriors were sent forth to them, that they might appear to the greatest advantage. Those, too, who had remained at home, tasked their wardrobes and toilets to do honor to the procession.

The Arickaras generally go naked, but, like all savages, they have their gala dress, of which they are not a little vain. This usually consists of a gray surcoat and leggins of the dressed skin of the antelope, resembling chamois leather, and embroidered with porcupine quills brilliantly dyed. A buffalo robe is thrown over the right shoulder, and across the left is slung a quiver of arrows. They wear gay coronets of plumes, particularly those of the swan; but the feathers of the black eagle are considered the most worthy, being a sacred bird among the Indian warriors. He who has killed an enemy in his own land is entitled to drag at his heels a fox-skin attached to each moccasin; and he who has slain a grizzly bear wears a necklace of his claws, the most glorious trophy that a hunter can exhibit.

An Indian toilet is an operation of some toil and trouble; the warrior often has to paint himself from head to foot, and is extremely capricious and difficult to please, as to the hideous distribution of streaks and colors. A great part of the morning, therefore, passed away before there were any signs of the distant pageant. In the mean time a profound stillness reigned over the village. Most of the inhabitants had gone forth; others remained in mute expectation. All sports and occupations were suspended, excepting that in the lodges the painstaking squaws were silently busied in preparing the repasts for the warriors.

It was near noon that a mingled sound of voices and rude music, faintly heard from a distance, gave notice that the procession was on the march. The old men and such of the squaws as could leave their employments hastened forth to meet it. In a little while it emerged from behind a hill, and had a wild and picturesque appearance as it came moving over the summit in measured step, and to the cadence of songs and savage instruments; the warlike standards and trophies flaunting aloft, and the feathers, and paint, and silver ornaments of the warriors glaring and glittering in the sunshine.


The pageant had really something chivalrous in its arrangement. The Arickaras are divided into several bands, each bearing the name of some animal or bird, as the buffalo, the bear, the dog, the pheasant. The present party consisted of four of these bands, one of which was the dog, the most esteemed in war, being composed of young men under thirty, and noted for prowess. It is engaged on the most desperate occasions. The bands marched in separate bodies under their several leaders. The warriors on foot came first, in platoons of ten or twelve abreast; then the horsemen. Each band bore as an ensign a spear or bow decorated with beads, porcupine quills and painted feathers. Each bore its trophies of scalps, elevated on poles, their long black locks streaming in the wind. Each was accompanied by its rude music and minstrelsy. In this way the procession extended nearly a quarter of a mile. The warriors were variously armed, some few with guns, others with bows and arrows, and war clubs; all had shields of buffalo hide, a kind of defence generally used by the Indians of the open prairies, who have not the covert of trees and forests to protect them. They were painted in the most savage style. Some had the stamp of a red hand across their mouths, a sign that they had drunk the life-blood of a foe!

As they drew near to the village the old men and the women began to meet them, and now a scene ensued that proved the fallacy of the old fable of Indian apathy and stoicism. Parents and children, husbands and wives, brothers and sisters met with the most rapturous expressions of joy; while wailings and lamentations were heard from the relatives of the killed and wounded. The procession, however, continued on with slow and measured step, in cadence to the solemn chant, and the warriors maintained their fixed and stern demeanor.

Between two of the principal chiefs rode a young warrior who had distinguished himself in the battle. He was severely wounded, so as with difficulty to keep on his horse; but he preserved a serene and steadfast countenance, as if perfectly unharmed. His mother had heard of his condition. She broke through the throng, and rushing up, threw her arms around him and wept aloud. He kept up the spirit and demeanor of a warrior to the last, but expired shortly after he had reached his home.

The village was now a scene of the utmost festivity and triumph. The banners, and trophies, and scalps, and painted shields were elevated on poles near the lodges. There were war-feasts and scalp-dances, with warlike songs and savage music; all the inhabitants were arrayed in their festal dresses; while the old heralds went round from lodge to lodge, promulgating with loud voices the events of the battle and the exploits of the various warriors.

Such was the boisterous revelry of the village; but sounds of another kind were heard on the surrounding hills; piteous wailings of the women, who had retired thither to mourn in darkness and solitude for those who had fallen in battle. There the poor mother of the youthful warrior who had returned home in triumph but to die, gave full vent to the anguish of a mother's heart. How much does this custom among the Indian women of repairing to the hill tops in the night, and pouring forth their wailings for the dead, call to mind the beautiful and affecting passage of Scripture, "In Rama was there a voice heard, lamentation, and weeping, and great mourning, Rachel weeping for her children, and would not be comforted, because they are not."