Part 4 out of 4
Of course Marjory gave him an outline of her evening's adventure "upon
this hint," and he laughed heartily at the whole thing, assuring
her that _he_ had never believed for a moment in such an absurd
possibility as she had fancied.
Well, what of it all? Nothing particular. Mr. Owen and John are fast
friends by this time. Marjory is beginning to take an interest in
natural history. Also, she has lost all faith in conviction upon
circumstantial evidence. She is "o'er young to marry yet," her aunt
thinks, and so do I of course, for this is not a love-story: I wish
that to be distinctly understood.
THE MYSTERY OF MASSABIELLE.
It was a mild and pleasant day in the middle of February, and the
bright sunlight streamed through the windows of the poor little room
where Madame Soubirons sat alone. The table, with its dishes neatly
arranged for the noonday meal, stood in the middle of the room. A pot
hung in the large fireplace, and a skillet sat upon the few remaining
coals. There was nothing with which to replenish the fire, and Madame
Soubirons sat gazing at the flickering embers with a rueful face. "A
cold hearth is more chilling than the mountains," she said; and she
rose and went out of the poor little apartment, which, with all its
poverty, would not have been cheerless had a bright fire glowed upon
the neatly-kept hearth, and sat down upon the doorstep, where the
sunlight fell warmly.
From this position was afforded a view of a picturesque and romantic
landscape, presenting in the foreground a portion of the quaint
village of Lourdes, with the cross of the old church brightly gleaming
in the sunlight above the thickly-clustered cottage roofs. Farther
away stood the great mill, and grimly from its rocky seat frowned
the ancient castle, of which the people of Lourdes never wearied of
telling that it had been besieged by Charlemagne centuries ago. In the
distance glanced the river Gave, fighting its rock-riven way to the
sea. The prospect, growing continually more grand as it receded, was
finally hedged about by the majestic Pyrenees, which lifted their
glimmering snows against the pale winter sky.
But Madame Soubirons was familiar with these scenes, and had no eyes
for them. She sat leaning her cheek upon her hand, and as she glanced
down the crooked walk she murmured, "They have had time to get back,
if they hurried as I charged them." Presently a cheery whistle rang
out upon the air, and looking up she saw a man in miller's dress
approaching. It was Jean Soubirons, her husband, coming home to
dinner. She waited until he arrived, and they then went into the
"Can you eat a cold dinner to-day, Jean?" she asked. "I have only
bread and milk to give you."
"Yes, with thanks, Louise," he replied; "but where are Bernadette and
"They went with Jeanne Abadie to gather fagots, but they should have
been back long since. You might then have had a warm dinner."
"All is well if they come to no harm, but it is somewhat chilly for
"I gave her a pair of stockings to wear. She can't go like Marie, poor
child! who can hardly endure her sabots, even in winter. But I do not
see what detains them."
They sat down and ate in silence, the two vacant places seeming to
fill them with a feeling of desolation.
"I am sorry," said Jean Soubirons as he rose from the table, "that
I am so poor a man that my little girls must bring the wood for the
"Perhaps we shall be richer some day, Jean," said Louise, as if she
"Perhaps so--in heaven," said he sadly, "where there are no poor;" and
he went back to his work.
Meantime the three girls had been wandering. Of the two sisters, Marie
was rosy and strong, but Bernadette pale and delicate, being afflicted
with asthma. Bernadette appeared to be only ten years old, but was
fourteen. Previous to this time almost all her life had been passed
away from home, she having lived at Bastres with a friend of her
mother, where she had been provided with a home for the small sum of
five francs a month and her service in tending the sheep: she was not
strong enough for more laborious work. Here Bernadette lived a calm
and uneventful life, her duties causing her to be much in solitude,
which she whiled away in petting her lambs. Very often the time had
been set when she was to return home, but it was as often postponed.
Her friends at Bastres could not bear to give her up, and year after
year she had lingered with them. She had been at home only two weeks
upon that day when she went with Jeanne and Marie to gather sticks.
The three girls, dressed in their black woolen frocks, white capulets
and wooden shoes--Bernadette alone having stockings, in consideration
of her health--trudged on, enjoying the pure air. They crossed the
bridge of the Gave, passed the mill and went on through the meadow,
turning their steps toward the grotto of Massabielle, which was not
far distant. There are, properly speaking, several grottoes in the
rocks of Massabielle, which consist of numerous excavations formed by
Nature in the great crags. One of these, however, is usually referred
to as "The Grotto," and is a cavern of quite extensive dimensions,
being about thirteen feet high by fifty wide. There are two other
excavations in the rock above this cavern, one of which rudely
resembles the broken window of a ruined church--suggesting that idea
the more forcibly perhaps from the fact that it admits light into the
Before reaching the entrance of the grotto, however, there was a
small stream to be crossed. There was no bridge, but this was only a
slight hindrance to Jeanne and Marie, who took off their shoes, and,
springing from stone to stone, were soon over. They were in advance of
Bernadette, who stopped frequently to cough, and when she came up to
the stream they were putting on their wooden shoes.
"How cold the water is!" she heard one say, and she hesitated to
step into the cold stream. Jeanne saw her pausing upon the brink,
and called out, "Cross as we did: give long leaps and come over." She
called to them then to throw stones in for her to step upon, but they
were busily engaged piling up sticks, and paid no attention to her, so
she began to pull off her shoes and stockings. When she bent down she
heard a great rushing sound, as of the water and the wind. It seemed
as if a great storm were breaking, but when she looked up all was
calm. The leaves scarcely stirred in the breeze, and the trails of ivy
that hung over the rocky windows of the grotto swayed gently to and
fro. So she proceeded to pull off her stockings unalarmed. After a few
seconds the noise increased, and when Bernadette again looked up she
saw a beautiful vision standing in the window or upper entrance of the
grotto, which was filled with the lustre of its halo. The apparition
was dressed in pure white, and bore a chaplet upon its arm, and had no
resemblance to Bernadette's ideal of the Virgin. The child was filled
with awe, but felt no fear, and reverently kneeling she continued to
gaze at the vision, which smiled upon her and made the sign of the
cross. Bernadette did likewise. The appearance then vanished, and
for some time Bernadette remained spell-bound and still kneeling and
gazing abstractedly into the grotto, from which the luminous quality
had faded. After a short time she recovered from her transport, and
looking around her found the appearance of nothing changed. The stream
rushed on, the trees were the same, and in the hollow of the grotto
the wild brier grew in its accustomed place, and the clinging moss and
the ivy trails were unchanged.
Bernadette made her way across the stream as quickly as she could,
and hastening onward soon overtook Marie and Jeanne, who looked up
in surprise at her haste. When she had reached them their surprise
deepened into wonder as they observed the emotion depicted in her
"Have you seen nothing?" inquired Bernadette, her eyes all aglow with
"No: what is it?" said Marie.
"It is something strange," said Bernadette.
"It could not have been stranger than you look now, with your staring
eyes and your flying hair," said Jeanne.
"What have you seen, Bernadette?" asked Marie.
"Some one in white, bright and gleaming," said Bernadette.
"What did it do? Describe it," exclaimed Jeanne.
"I cannot describe it. If you haven't seen it, I can't tell you what
it was like," she said.
The two other girls were frightened. "Will it hurt us?" asked Marie.
"I am afraid of such things," said Jeanne: "let us hurry home as fast
as we can."
Bernadette was not afraid, but, habitually passive, she hurried with
them without protest. When they arrived at home she told her mother
her experience, and Madame Soubirons, being incredulous, attempted to
convince Bernadette that her vision was only a creature of her fancy;
but with no avail. The child was silenced, but not convinced. Madame
Soubirons said she would not allow her daughter to go to the grotto
any more, as it filled her with such ideas; and she expected to
hear no more about the matter. But the next day Bernadette talked
incessantly of her "Dame," and on the following day, when some one
inquired what her vision was like, she replied that she had seen
such a face at church; and on the third day, which was Sunday, she
prevailed upon her mother to allow her to go to the grotto again.
Marie and Jeanne accompanied her as before. Having arrived at the
grotto, Bernadette knelt before the aperture: Marie and Jeanne
followed her example, and when they turned to look at her they were
amazed at her appearance. She seemed to be transfigured. Her face
was radiant. With her eyes fixed, her lips partly open and her hands
clasped, she appeared to listen with the greatest attention. Her
companions were frightened by her strange behavior, and implored her
to rise and go home with them.
"Bernadette, get up! Come: we are afraid of you when you look so
She seemed to hear them no more than if she had been a statue, and for
a few moments the group remained silent and motionless. There was
no sound except the swirling of the stream and the rustling of the
leaves, and to Marie and Jeanne the very silence seemed to be a spell
of enchantment. Presently the rapturous light died out of the face
of Bernadette, and she appeared as usual, much to the relief of the
Upon their arrival at home the same story was told by Bernadette as
before, and again it was disbelieved. No restriction was placed upon
her going to the grotto, however, and she continued to visit it,
when her vision arose before her again and again. In course of time
the singular event became much talked about, especially among the
peasantry of that vicinity, who believed implicitly that the Virgin
Mary appeared to the child.
People began to accompany Bernadette upon her visits to the grotto,
and the number and interest of her observers daily increased. Many
who were entirely skeptical went for the purpose of gratifying their
curiosity. Among this class were Madame Millet and Mademoiselle
Antoinette Peyret, who accompanied the little girl one day with the
intention of questioning her after they had studied her conduct.
On this occasion she excited their suspicions by leading them by an
unaccustomed route down a steep and rocky path, where they had great
difficulty in following her. They finally arrived at the grotto, and
were astounded to observe the change that came over her. She seemed to
be in a state of ecstatic awe.
The ladies were so solemnly impressed by her appearance that they felt
deep regret for having intruded upon so reverent a scene.
"It is a profanation for us to be here," said one.
"You must remain," said Bernadette immediately, as if she had been
directed to stop them.
"Ask who she is," exclaimed Madame Millet, greatly excited. "Here,
take this card and pencil, and beg of her that she will write down her
Bernadette took them, and the ladies heard her repeat the request as
she approached the excavation and the divine radiance lighted up her
face. She paused, and for several moments remained in an apparent
state of rapture: then she returned to them, and in reply to their
inquiries said that her "Dame" had said that she saw no necessity to
write her wishes, for she knew Bernadette would obey.
"Obey what?" asked Mademoiselle Peyret. "What did she command you to
"To come to meet her at the grotto every day for fifteen days."
"I don't know why."
"But did she not say anything more?"
"She promised that if I did so I should be happy in a future world."
Madame Millet and Mademoiselle Peyret went home mystified. The story
of their futile attempt to discover deception in Bernadette got
abroad, "and still the wonder grew." The interest in the visions
intensified, and vast crowds, numbered not by tens, but by hundreds,
assembled to watch Bernadette during the appointed fifteen days. The
entire population of Lourdes appeared to be included in the crowd.
The presence of this observing multitude exerted no influence whatever
upon Bernadette, who passed among them as they made way for her
without looking to the right or to the left, as if she had too great
thoughts on her mind to give any heed to the people. Day after day
she repeated her visits, kneeling in her accustomed place and giving
herself up to a state of ecstasy.
About this time, so great had become the popular excitement over
the child, the attention of the authorities was attracted by it.
Accordingly, M. Massy, prefect of the commune, and M. Jacomet,
commissaire de police, conferred together, and decided to arrest
Bernadette as an impostor. It was on the 11th of February, 1858, when
the girl had her first vision, and about ten days thereafter, in
the presence of a great crowd, a police-officer approached her, and
laying his hand upon her shoulder took her to the commissaire for
Imagine this simple and artless child boldly confronting
the commissaire, who must have been, in her eyes, a person of high
dignity! M. Jacomet plied her with questions and cross-questions,
and used all his power to implicate her in some inconsistency or
contradiction; but his efforts were futile, and he was obliged to
confess that he could not make out any case against the child, whom
he allowed to go home. Still, his dignity required some show of
authority; so he commanded Jean Soubirons that he should not permit
Bernadette to go to the grotto of Massabielle, under penalty of
imprisonment. Then he wrote to M. Rouland, minister of public
instruction, for advice.
Soubirons kept his daughter at home for a day or two: then, observing
her to grieve under the restraint, decided to risk the wrath of M.
Jacomet, and allowed her to go where she wished. The people upheld
Soubirons, and the crowds at the grotto assembled again. It was then
proposed by some to consult Peyramale, the cure, who was known to
discredit the stories of Bernadette, and it was thought might disabuse
her mind of its illusions or detect her imposture, as the case might
be; but Peyramale would not make any efforts in that direction.
However, Bernadette, of her own accord, came to him one day, saying
she wished to speak to him.
"Are you the daughter of the miller Soubirons?" asked Peyramale.
"Yes, monsieur le cure," she said.
"What is it you wish?"
"I came to say that the Lady who appears to me in the grotto of
"Hush, child!" interrupted Peyramale. "Do not repeat this foolish tale
to me. You have stirred the whole country round with the story of your
vision, but do not bring such tales to me. What do you mean by this?
I tell you, child, the Virgin sees you now, and if you practice
imposture the door of heaven will be for ever shut against you."
Bernadette was in no wise disturbed, and resumed her narrative without
"What, then, is the name of your vision?" asked Peyramale
when she had told him the story of her experience.
"I don't know," she replied.
"Was it the Virgin?"
"I do not say that it was the Virgin," said Bernadette, "but I know
that I see her as plainly as I see you now, and she speaks to me
distinctly; and she commanded me to say to you that she wishes a
church to be built on the rock of Massabielle."
Peyramale was astonished at the strange language and the firmness of
the child, and replied: "Your story, Bernadette, is beyond reason:
still, your manner is honest. Do not give yourself up, I pray you,
to an illusion of your mind. You have some fancy, it may be, that
deceives you. The Virgin could command me as well as yourself. You
say there is a brier growing in the grotto: if your vision wants me to
build a church on the cliff, tell her she must first cause that brier
to bring forth roses in this winter season."
Having received this reply, Bernadette withdrew. When she next saw
her vision she delivered the message of Peyramale, but it was not
regarded. The apparition commanded her to go as far as she could on
her hands and knees, and when Bernadette had done so, to the great
wonder of her observers she was commanded to drink. She rose, and was
about to go to the stream, when the vision called her back and told
her to drink of the fountain, not of the stream. Now, there was no
fountain, but Bernadette instinctively dug a small hole in the earth
with her hands, and a very small stream of water flowed forth from
the earth and filled it. She dipped some up with her hands and drank.
This little stream continued to flow, and increased in size. On the
following day it was many times its original size. Travelers are to
this day shown the stream near the grotto of Massabielle, which, it is
declared, thus sprang from a miraculous source. Three hundred people
are declared to have seen this miracle, and in different regions
of France many people may still be found who declare that they were
present upon that occasion.
After this, still greater crowds flocked to the grotto of Massabielle,
and again the authorities interfered. MM. Massy and Jacomet for a long
time waged their war with the people until the emperor telegraphed,
ordering that all interference should be stopped. Thus the people
were left in peaceful possession of their fountain, and reports of its
marvelous cures filled all the papers, and visitors came from far and
near, bringing cans and bottles to fill at the wondrous stream.
It will be remembered that Peyramale had demanded that the brier
should blossom before a church should be built. In spite of his
decision there now stands not far from the grotto a church that has
already cost two and a half millions of francs, though not completed,
and numerous convents are projected to occupy sites in the vicinity.
A statue of the Virgin stands in the grotto where the vision appeared,
and on the rock are hung numerous crutches and staffs, which it is
claimed were left there by those cripples whom the waters of the
spring have healed.
Bernadette became day by day an object of still greater interest--in
some cases of reverence. Many offers were made to provide for herself
and her family, but they were declined, and both her parents died
poor, her mother so late as December 18, 1866. Marie Soubirons and
a brother, it is said, still live at Lourdes, but Bernadette became
a Sister of Charity, and is now an inmate of the Hospice of Nevers,
under the name of Sister Marie Bernard. At this institution she took
the veil, and she occupies herself, when health admits, in tending
the sick. She lives a life of great seclusion, and is almost utterly
ignorant of all that occurs outside the hospice walls. From the letter
of a graphic writer I quote as follows: "She is now twenty-five. She
is not beautiful in feature, but in expression. Her look has a soft,
melting attraction. She is a great sufferer, and is tried by cruel
pains in her chest, which she bears very patiently, saying the Virgin
told her she should be happy in heaven."
Early in October, 1872, a cable despatch from Paris appeared in
all the dailies, announcing that fifty thousand pilgrims were then
journeying through France toward Lourdes. Their object was to
assemble at the grotto of Massabielle to pray for the salvation and
regeneration of France, so lately desolated by war. A large proportion
of the pilgrims came from Paris, where their journey had been
inaugurated by services at Notre Dame des Victoires. Indeed, it may
be said that their entire journey was one long religious service, for
litanies were chanted unceasingly upon the route. The grand service
at the grotto took place October 6th, when five bishops conducted mass
and vespers at five altars reared among the rocks; and other services
were conducted at numerous chapels and shrines among the mountains for
miles around by various pilgrim priests. A sermon was delivered to the
great host by the bishop of Tarbes, the subject being the disasters
of the nation. He closed by exhorting them to patriotism. Raising his
arms to the multitude, he asked, "Will you promise to serve and love
your country as I mean?"
"Yes! yes! yes!" answered the vast host in thunderous response.
"Will you cry 'Vive la France!' as children should who have been
nurtured from the breast of a cherishing mother?"
"Vive la France!" resounded from rock and valley.
Then turning toward the statue of the Virgin, the bishop cried, "Vive
the Church, the Rock of Ages!" Again the mighty voice of the crowd
responded, and with the final cry of "Vive the Holy Father, Pius IX.!"
the assemblage broke up.
Probably there were no scenes incidental to the pilgrimage more
imposing than its processions, formed in the public square of Lourdes.
One of them was a mile long, and the van had entered the meadow
before the rear had left the square. It was composed of people of all
classes, who sang hymns as with one mighty voice. It bore banners of
violet, green, rose, blue and other colors, magnificently decorated
with gilding, paintings and embroidery. These banners numbered nearly
three hundred, and came from various parts of the country. Even
far-off Algeria was represented. The banner of Alsace and Lorraine
was in mourning, and was borne by girls in white. As it passed many
persons pressed forward to kiss its hanging tassels. The banner from
Nantes was so profusedly embellished with gold and other decorations
that six strong men labored to support it; and those from Paris,
Bordeaux, Rheims, Lille, etc. were not greatly inferior to it in
elegance. The sun shone brightly, and with the grandeur of the banners
and the pomp of the prelates in their rich sacerdotal robes formed a
scene of indescribable splendor.
At the farther end of the meadow or valley an altar had been erected.
Here the banners drew up in a vast semicircle enclosing the great
audience, and vespers were sung, after which the fifty thousand
worshipers knelt and received the benediction, which was pronounced by
eight bishops simultaneously. The services before the altar being thus
concluded, the bearers of the banners again formed in procession for
the purpose of carrying them to the church upon the rock, in which
they were to be placed. At this time the sun was sinking behind the
blue Pyrenean peaks, and as it threw its last red gleams upon the
splendid train that wound in and out along the craggy mountain-path
it lighted up a picture of resplendent glory. As fast as the banners
arrived at the church they were placed upon its walls, which were soon
completely covered with their gorgeous hangings. Owing to the length
of the procession, it was after sunset when the last banner had been
placed in the church, which, with its brilliant adornments flashing
in the blaze of wax tapers, was one grand glow of glittering splendor.
After a brief service of thanksgiving the congregation withdrew,
and descended the mountain in the light of bonfires that burned upon
A spectacle of equal brilliancy, though less pompous, was presented by
the grand torchlight procession which formed one evening in the square
of Lourdes, where all were provided with candles. Thirty thousand
persons were in this procession. They marched to the grotto of
Massabielle and to the church upon the rock, moving slowly and singing
hymns. As they moved they formed a great stream of glittering light,
which rolled on and on and up and up, across the meadow and up the
sinuous mountain-path. This impressive display lasted until midnight,
when the greater number of the lights had died out and their bearers
retired. But a goodly company still remained in the crypt of the
church at prayer, in some instances fighting off sleep by marching up
and down in companies, chanting night-prayers.
Thus a nation's ardent worshipers assembled in devotion at the spot
sanctified by the visions of Bernadette Soubirons. And what shall we
say of her? Her professed visions cannot be set aside as impostures
against the voice of thousands whose skepticism, as great as ours,
has been abashed. It could not have been in the nature of this artless
child, unencouraged and alone, to have been an impostor. Such would
have been a role thoroughly foreign to her character. Perhaps there
may have been illusion, a self-nourished fancy, evoked from the silent
reveries of those solitary days at Bastres, when her mind was for long
periods given up to undisturbed imaginings. Who can say?
WILLIAM D. WOOD.
Good-bye, good-bye, my dearest!
My bravest and my fairest!
I bless thee with a blessing meet
For all thy manly worth.
Good-bye, good-bye, my treasure!
My only pride and pleasure!
I bless thee with the strength of love
Before I send thee forth.
Mine own! I fear to bless thee,
I hardly dare caress thee,
Because I love thee with a love
That overgrows my life;
And as the time gets longer
Its tender throbs grow stronger:
My maiden troth but waits to be
The fondness of the wife.
Alas! alas! my dearest,
The look of pain thou wearest!
The kisses thou dost bend to give
Are parting ones to-day!
Thy sheltering arms are round me,
But the cruel pain hath found me.
What shall I do with all this love
When thou art gone away?
Ah well! One poor endeavor
Shall nerve me while we sever:
I will not fret my hero's heart
With piteous sobs and tears.
I send thee forth, my dearest,
My truest and my rarest,
And yield thee to the keep of Him
Who blessed our happier years.
Once more good-bye! and bless thee!
My faltering lips caress thee.
When shall I feel thy hand again
Go kindly o'er my hair?
Let the dear arms that fold me
One last sweet moment hold me:
In life or death our love shall be
No weaker for the wear!
A NIGHT IN BEDFORD, VIRGINIA.
"The general has been sending his ambulance"--Bless these ambulances!
they are as common in Virginia as hen-nest grass or clumps of
sassafras--"to the depot every morning for three or four days for
"The deuce he has! Then why didn't he let me know by letter, as I
asked him to do?"
"Can't say, really."
This conversation took place in the main street of the extraordinary
city of Lugston--a city so very peculiar that I must give it an entire
article some day.
Repairing forthwith to a newspaper office, I wrote to the general
how sorry I was that he had been put to so much trouble--I had not
received the letter which he must have written--obliged to go home
in the morning--hoped at some future time to have the pleasure, etc.,
etc. Then I went to my lodgings on Federal Hill, and, behold! there
was the letter. "Although the ambulance"--ever blessed!--"had been so
often to the depot, it would be there on Monday morning, and again on
Tuesday evening. Don't fail to," etc. Whereupon I called for paper
and wrote the general that, in spite of the necessity for my returning
home the next day, I would be at Blank Station on Tuesday evening and
meet that ambulance--blessed ambulance!--or die in the struggle. Go I
would, and go I went--if that is grammar.
A newspaper editor--there is no end of editors in Virginia: wherever
there is a tank, a tan-yard or a wood-pile, there you find one--a
learned professor who had a flourishing school a few miles up the road
(public instruction is playing hob with most of the private schools
in Virginia), and a judge on a lecturing-tour (how is a Virginia
judge to support his family without lecturing, wood-sawing or other
supplementary business?) entertained me most agreeably on my way to
A cadet from Annapolis was the first object that met my eye when I got
"'S death! a Virginian in that hated uniform?"
I said no such thing, felt no such thing, but was inwardly pleased
that Uncle Sam's money (he gets ten millions a year out of Virginia
tobacco, and then brags about what he does for our children, the sly
old dog!) was educating some of our boys who otherwise might not be
educated half so well, if at all. Moreover, the broad shoulders, the
trim flanks, the aquiline nose, brown hair and ruddy cheeks of the
young fellow recalled the best specimens of British lads whom I had
seen in Canada and elsewhere. In truth, I could hardly persuade myself
that he was not English.
Albion was in the air, for on the other side of the depot there was
a lot of trunks and other baggage, the make of which could not
be mistaken. I soon learned that one of the best estates in the
neighborhood had been sold to an Englishman, who had arrived that
"Furies! the sacred soil of Virginia _again_ passing into the hands of
the blarsted Hinglish, from whom it was wrested a century ago by the
blood and treasure of George Washington's hatchet! A Federal cadet on
one side and an Englishman on the other of Blank Depot, away off here
in Bedford! What are we coming to?"
I did not say or think this either, but was delighted to find John
Bull pervading the Old Dominion.
Another and a bitterer pill, had I been as disloyal as I was five
years ago, and ought to be now, awaited me, as you shall hear.
But where is that ambulance? The blessed vehicle was there, and, after
so long and painful a separation, we should have met face to face if
it had not been backed up to the platform to receive--whom? me? No,
a parcel of ladies, who filled every seat. My inflammable Southside
soul would have burst into a high blaze at this if a gentleman had
not immediately stepped forward with a snug jug of whisky. Whisky in
any vessel I love, but whisky in a jug not too big to handle easily
I adore. My viznomy relaxed, a beam of joy began to irradiate my
features, when to my extreme surprise the benevolent jug-gentleman
said, "Take a glass of claret punch"--he had the glass as well as the
jug--"won't you, sir?"
Amazement! claret punch in a jug at a depot in the heart, or at any
rate the pericardium, of Bedford county! Where was I? who was I? what
was my name? and where was I going to? In my life I was never more
The ambulance drove off, and I was consigned to a spring wagon with a
white boy for a driver.
"How far is it to the general's?" I ventured to ask as I stepped in.
"Never mind, sir: we shall be there in an hour and a half."
And off we went like the wind. He drove very boldly and at the same
time very cautiously, avoiding the numerous stumps, stones and ruts
with admirable dexterity. I began to suspect that the boy was not a
Virginia boy. When at length we reached the smooth stage-road I began
to question him: "Are you the general's son?"
"No, sir: that was my father at the station"--he of the jug.
"How do you like this country?"
My habit from childhood had been to take the life of any stranger who
had the audacity to tell me that he did not like any and every part
of Virginia, but of late I have contented myself with slicing off his
"The longer I live here the better I like it."
Smart boy! he had saved his auditory organs. But as yet his accent had
not been sufficiently defined to enable me to tell his nationality.
"You are not from England, are you?"
"No, indeed, sir--from New Hampshire."
The appalling truth was out. First, a Yankee uniform; second, an
Englishman; third, a whole raft, a "hull lot," of New Hampshire
Yankees; and yet they call this Virginia!
No wonder I was silent. Night had fallen, we had entered a dark
forest, there was an unreconstructed penknife (somehow or other,
I always forget my bowie-knife and Derringers now-a-days) recently
sharpened in my pocket. Why did I not cut the throat of this little
Oppressor and fatten the soil of my native land with the blood of the
small ruthless Yankee Invader?
It was just because at this moment we caught up with the ambulance.
The two vehicles halted, a young girl and a little boy left the
ambulance and took seats by the side of my driver, and the greeting of
the brother and sister--the latter having just returned from a visit
to her native granite hills--was actually as affectionate, beautiful
and sweet as if they had been born in the middle of the Mother of
States and of Statesmen. And as the ambulance drove on there came
floating back to us ever and anon on the night wind a still sweeter
voice. It came from a young lady--a young Yankee lady at that--and it
sounded sweet to me--to me myself, my own dear, unadulterated, real
Old Virginia self.
Turning from the main road, we wound around among the rocky ravines
in a fashion truly bewildering to a body with weak eyes, but my little
Yankee driver seemed so much at home that I felt no shadow of fear.
Arriving safely at the general's capacious mansion, I bade my Northern
friends good-night, and sat down to a supper without fried chickens
or coffee. In lieu of the latter we had cold tea, with a slice of
lemon in each goblet. After a long talk on matters of no concern to
the reader, during which the general related a number of capital
war-anecdotes, I contrived, as is my wont, to turn the conversation
upon agricultural topics, with the view of imparting to him a modicum
of that consummate farming wisdom which appertains to every thoroughly
"Fine country you have, general."
"Yes: from Lugston to the Tennessee line, two hundred good miles, the
country is as fine as the sun ever shone upon."
"Appears to be thinly settled."
"You may well say so. Between my house and the station there are eight
or nine thousand acres, most of it excellent land, belonging to only
five or six owners."
"Indeed! What are such immense tracts good for now-a-days?"
"Good for grass."
"But they seem to pay little attention to grass."
"True. It is a splendid cheese country, as I have proved, but our
people are not up to that as yet."
"They _will_ grow tobacco. I saw some fine timber sacrificed for the
sake of new-ground tobacco."
"And why not? A man gets tired of paying taxes for twenty or thirty
years on timber which yields him nothing."
I smiled an invisible smile, reverting in my thoughts to an assault
I had made the week before upon my kinsman in Buckingham. "William,"
said I, "why will you Southside people continue to exhaust your land
"Dick," he replied, "you are the doggonedest fool out of jail. _You_,
raised in Virginia, and ask a question like that! Wheat is uncertain,
corn doesn't pay, we are too far from market for vegetables, too poor
to put our lands in grass, and tobacco is the only thing that will
fetch money. As for exhausting land, plenty of tobacco is raised in
Ohio and Connecticut, and you never hear anybody talk about exhausting
"Yes, but there they manure heavily, giving back to the land as much
as they take, or more."
"Well, old-field pine is good enough manure for a man who has plenty
of land and can take his time."
Thus in two instances my anti-tobacco wisdom turned out to be about
as profitable as King James's memorable _Counterblast_ against the
beloved weed of Virginia.
"But, general," said I, "surely your neighbors don't want to retain
such vast tracts of land."
"Certainly not. Men do not like to part with good land, and if my
friends could set their farms well in grass, so that a few hands could
attend to them, they would only sell at very high figures; but being
unable to do this, they are willing, and many of them anxious, to sell
on most reasonable terms."
"What is the trouble, then?"
"The trouble is about houses."
"Wealthy people seldom emigrate. The men who leave home have generally
but limited means, and coming here they find just the soil and climate
they desire, but no place to lay their heads; and few if any of them
can afford to buy land and build houses at the same time. This, I am
satisfied, is the main difficulty in the way of the speedy filling up
of Virginia with the best class of yeoman settlers."
"A difficulty not easily remedied."
"No, for our people, rich in land, are even poorer in money than the
"How on earth, then, did you manage to sell to the New Hampshire
gentleman who came with me this evening, and who, as I learn, bought a
part of your farm?"
"Why, I had a roomy house, and I just opened my doors to him and his
family, and kept them here free of charge till their own house was
"Well, general," dropping my voice to the Secesh conspirator level,
"how do you like him?"
The general, known by the antique name of Jones (though the Sixth
Pennsylvania and other Northern cavalry were acquainted with him under
another cognomen), like all the strapping sons of thunder who went
actively into the field instead of staying at home and abusing Jeff.
Davis, does not regard his late enemies with that intense hatred which
is so gratifying to myself and some other people.
He spoke out aloud: "I like him first rate. He is an admirable
neighbor--a man of sense, practical, sagacious and industrious; and
his family, wife, sons and daughters, are in all respects worthy of
him. I wish the county had a thousand of just such people."
This was a crusher for me. Drawing myself up to my full height--which
ought to be but is not six feet--I seized a kerosene lamp with my
right hand, and looking the unfortunate man full in the eye, I said
very respectfully, "General, good-night."
Undismayed, he eyed me back, and, in a tone of what I took to be
cordiality, replied, "Maybe you'd like a little whisky-and-water
before going to bed?"
I thanked him "No," mounted the lofty staircase, divested myself of
sundry sartorial cerements and plunged my earthly tabernacle into the
centre of a big delicious bed. There, while the thunder rolled among
the mountains, the rain plashed upon the window-shutters and the wind
blew like the very devil, I muttered to myself, "Here is a man bearing
worthily one of the most honored names in the Commonwealth--a member,
in fact, of one of the first--the first--_first_ fam--families in
Vir--gin--ia, actually pr--prais--praising Yan--Yank--Yankees in--in's
own hou--" I was asleep.
On the morrow, when I returned to the station and saw how very lovely
the country was, how fertile--the rounded mountains, when cleared
of their royal forests, arable to their very summits, the air like
Olympian nectar, the sunshine a divine balm, the whole scene a
Sabbath-land of peace and of boundless plenty, awaiting only the
cohorts of the North and of the white-cliffed isle--I would fain have
cried, "Come, ye moderately pecunious Bulls, and you, ye hyperborean
Vandals from the far Lake of Winnipiseogee and the uttermost Cape of
Cod--come to this Canaan, not like carpet-bagging spies to steal our
big bunch of grapes and tote it off on a stick between two of you (as
per authentic pictures in Sunday-school books), but with your shekels,
your deniers, your pence, pounds sterling and crisp greenbacks: come
to this beauteous land, take it, own it, possess it, buy freely, and
be sure you reserve enough cash to build a house with; or, better
still, bring your houses ready made, in nests like buckets or painted
pails (I am sure you have them in your inventive realm). Come, I say,
and oust these mutton-headed Virginians, or sit down beside them, work
with them, teach them to work (you are so certain you can), and make
this American republic the Storehouse of the nations, the Cornucopia
of all creation!"
I got to the station just three hours after the train I intended to
take had left, and had to wait only two hours for the next train;
which was doing pretty well for Virginia. Possessing my Southside
soul in patience, I bought two not very bad cigars for ten cents, and
fell to contemplating some eight or nine of the Down-Trodden who were
hanging around. I must say that the Down-Trodden did not appear to
have been much flattened by the heel of the Oppressor. As I gazed, a
foolish parody started itself in my idle brain:
When the fair land of Bedford
Was ploughed by the hoof
Of the ruthless invader--
There the thing broke down, and--the events of the night before, the
Englishman, the happy Northern family and the thoroughly reconstructed
general, suggesting it in some queer cerebral way--a still more
foolish negro song, which I had forgotten for years, popped up in my
Lit-tel gal, I give you ninepunce
Ef you will dance de Haul-back;
And I kin dance de Haul-back,
And you kin dance de Haul back,
And we kin dance de Haul-back.
The relevancy of this utterly absurd thing did not then strike me. I
see it now. A certain people--whom I do love with my whole heart,
not in spite of their faults, but because of them: are they not my
own?--have been dancing the Haul-back for many generations, and now,
under my own eye and quite perceptibly in the rural parts of Virginia,
the dance is coming to an end. Slowly but surely we are lapsing
into Bullo-doodledom, with a momentary preponderance of Bull.
_Tempora_--do, I entreat you, allow me the use of my solitary dear
delightful old bit of Latin--_mutantur_; ay! and we mutate with them.
The world moves, and no amount of Haul-back will stay it.
RICHARD B. ELDER.
OUR MONTHLY GOSSIP.
The death was announced a few weeks ago of a lady whose name will
awaken a train of recollection in the minds of all who take an
interest in English family history. This was Miss Tylney-Long, sister
to the ill-fated Mrs. Tylney-Long-Wellesley-Pole.
The duke of Wellington's second brother, William, succeeded in 1778 to
the large Irish estates of a kinsman, Mr. Pole, and assumed that name
in addition to his own. Mr. Wellesley-Pole, who was eventually created
a peer as Lord Maryborough, had a son, who became, on the death of
his uncle, the marquis Wellesley, earl of Mornington. Never had the
peerage a more unworthy member. Starting in life with every advantage,
Mr. Wellesley-Pole seemed bent upon showing how effectually he could
foil the efforts of Fortune to serve him. When he reached an age for
marriage the greatest heiress of the time was Miss Tylney-Long. By a
succession of failures of male heirs the vast wealth of the family
of Child had devolved on this lady, and Mr. Wellesley-Pole became
the successful suitor for her hand. One of her seats was Wanstead
in Essex, some fifteen miles from London. Originally a royal manor,
Wanstead was granted by Edward VI. to Lord Rich, who sold it to
Elizabeth's favorite, Leicester. Subsequently, on its reverting to the
Crown, James I. gave it to Sir Henry Mildmay, but, he having been one
of Charles I.'s judges, it became forfeited, and once more returned to
the sovereign. Charles II. gave it to his brother James, who sold it
to Sir Robert Brooke, and he in turn sold it to Sir Joshua Child.
The Childs were the greatest mercantile family of their time. Sir
Joshua founded the banking-house of the name which still flourishes
(the oldest in London), and of which the young earl of Jersey is,
through his great-grandmother, also a Child heiress, the principal
partner. Sir Joshua's son was raised to a peerage as Earl Tylney, and
about 1715 employed a celebrated architect of the day, Colin Campbell,
to build a magnificent mansion. Wanstead was deemed on its completion
in many respects the most magnificent house in England. It was of
Portland stone, two hundred feet in length and seventy deep. The great
hall was fifty-three by forty-five feet, the ball-room seventy-five by
twenty-seven. This abode was furnished in a style of the most lavish
splendor, and Mr. Wellesley-Pole's income was more than adequate to
maintain it in befitting style. But no income is adequate to meet
the expenses of a gambler and spendthrift, and such was Mr.
Some of his wife's property was happily settled on her and her heirs,
and could not be got hold of by her rascally husband; but Wanstead,
after being leased for some time to the duc de Bourbon--who here
received intelligence of the death of his unfortunate son, the
duc d'Enghien--came to the hammer. The sale of the effects in 1822
exceeded anything of the kind which had been known in England up
to that date. The catalogue consisted of four hundred quarto pages,
published in three parts, at five shillings each, and it is said that
not less than twenty thousand copies were sold. It is not a little
remarkable that the contents of Fonthill Abbey (the celebrated seat of
the author of _Vathek_), which teemed with even greater riches, were
sold almost at the same time. Nor were the contents of the mansion
only disposed of. The fabric itself, which had cost three hundred and
sixty thousand pounds, was sold for eight thousand pounds, it being
a condition of the sale that it should be razed and the materials
removed within a definite number of months.
Had Tylney-Long-Wellesley-Pole (for such was the polysyllabic name he
bore after his marriage) been only a spendthrift and a gambler, his
case might not have seemed remarkable. But he showed himself in every
way a heartless scoundrel as regarded his wife and his children, who
had to seek legal protection against him. About a year after the sale
of her splendid home his wife died, and the event is thus spoken of
in a leading journal of the time: "The premature death of an amiable
and accomplished lady born to large possessions, and against whom the
voice of calumny never so much as breathed a slander, calls, we think,
for a passing comment, as illustrating and furnishing, we trust, a
lasting and useful lesson to the heartlessness of too many men of the
present day. With a fortune that made her a prize for princes, this
amiable woman gave her hand and heart to the man of her choice, and
with them all that unbounded wealth could bestow. What her fate has
been all the world knows: what it ought to have been the world is
equally well aware. To her, riches have been worse than poverty; and
her life seems to have been scarified and her heart broken through
the very means that should have cherished and maintained her in the
happiness and splendor which her fortune and disposition were alike
qualified to produce. Let her fate be a warning to all of her sex
who, blessed with affluence, think the buzzing throng which surrounds
them have hearts, when in fact they have none; and if there be such a
feeling as remorse accessible in the quarter where it is most called
for, let the world witness, by a future life of contrition, something
like atonement for the past."
So far, however, as the world could discover, the atonement never
came. Lord Mornington, as he became, actually found another woman to
marry him: he ill-used her, and having sunk into narrow circumstances,
neglected to provide her with the barest necessaries, so that the
applications of the countess of Mornington to the London police
magistrates for assistance became of frequent occurrence. It may
seem strange that the Wellesley family should not have stepped in to
prevent such a scandal. Probably they thought that the woman who in
the teeth of his evil reputation had chosen to marry him should take
the consequences. He died in 1857. His son, whose life his father's
conduct had sadly embittered, did not long survive him, and bequeathed
the remnant of his estates, including Draycot, a large mansion (which
had been strictly entailed) in Wiltshire, to his cousin, Lord Cowley,
then ambassador at Paris. His title passed to the duke of Wellington.
THE FATE OF DANGAN CASTLE.
Lord Cowley, on being created an earl, selected for his second title
that of Viscount Dangan, thus perpetuating the memory of the old seat
of the Wellesleys in Ireland. It is a somewhat remarkable circumstance
that although no family in the United Kingdom has within the last
century acquired such fame and honors as the Wellesleys, they have
long since ceased to own a rood of ground in the country whence
they derived the affluence and rank which were to the famous sons of
Garrett, earl of Mornington, the first stepping-stones to fame.
The Wellesleys are only Wellesleys--or Wesleys, as the name was
formerly spelt--in the female line. Richard Colley, son of Henry
Colley, of Castle Carbery, county Cork, succeeded on the 23d of
September, 1728, to the estates of his cousin, Garrett Wesley, Esq.,
of Dangan, county Meath, assumed the name and arms of "Wesley," and
was created baron of Mornington July 9, 1746. He married, December
23, 1819, Elizabeth, eldest daughter of Doctor John Sale, M.P. for
Carysfort, and died January 31, 1758, when he was succeeded by his
only son, Garrett, father of the duke of Wellington, who was created
in 1760 Viscount Wellesley and earl of Mornington.
In October, 1748, Mrs. Delany writes: "Last Monday we set out for
Dangan, Lord Mornington's. He is the same good-humored, agreeable man
he was seventeen years ago. My godson, Master Wesley [Wellington's
father] is a most extraordinary boy: he was thirteen last month,
is a very good scholar, and whatever study he undertakes masters
it most surprisingly. He began with the riddle last year, and now
plays everything at sight." [In after years Lord Mornington acquired
considerable distinction as a composer.]
"This place, Dangan Castle, is really magnificent: the old house that
was burnt down is rebuilding. They live at present in the offices: the
garden (or rather improvements and parks, for it is too extensive to
be called a garden) consists of six hundred Irish acres, between eight
and nine hundred English. There is a gravel-walk fifty-two feet broad
and six hundred yards long from the house to the great lake. The lake
contains twenty-six acres, is of an irregular shape, with a fort
built in all its forms. My godson is governor of the fort. He hoisted
all his colors, and was not a little mortified that I declined the
compliment of being saluted from the fort and ship. The ground, so far
as you can see every way, is waving in hills and dales."
Dangan stands about seven miles from Trim and twenty from Dublin. The
Marquis Wellesley (husband of Miss Caton of Maryland), who succeeded
his father as second earl of Mornington, sold it to a Mr. Burroughs,
who, after greatly improving it, let it to Mr. Roger O'Connor, a
near relative of the Chartist agitator of the name. Whilst in his
possession the house and demesne were stripped of everything that
could be turned into money; the timber, which was remarkable both for
quantity and quality, was cut down; and the gardens were permitted to
run to waste. At length the house--being heavily insured--was found
to be on fire, and was burnt before assistance could be obtained. One
part of the building, of which the walls were extraordinarily thick,
is now inhabited by a farmer who superintends the property.
The present duke of Wellington (whose wife, formerly well known as
Lady Douro, is a daughter of Lord Tweeddale, and sister of the wife
of Sir Robert Peel) is childless. His only brother, Lord Charles
Wellesley, left two sons, but if these should die issueless the
dukedom will be extinct, and the Irish earldom of Mornington will
pass to Lord Cowley.
INTERVIEWING CAPTAIN KIDD.
Mr. Editor: The following, which I cut from the New York _Herald_ of
July 17, 1699 (accidentally in my possession), may interest some of
your readers. I was not before aware that the _Herald's_ files
went back so far, but it was a greater surprise to discover that
interviewing flourished at so early a date.
Yours, SARSFIELD YOUNG.
THE PIRATE CHIEF IN A BOSTON JAIL!
BOUQUETS AND BAKED BEANS _vs._ PURITAN THEOLOGY!
CALUMNIATIONS OF THE PRESS!
DON'T CALL ME PET NAMES--WILLIAM _vs._ ROBERT!
ALL A MISTAKE ABOUT THAT CHISEL!
SARAH'S MUGS AND PORRINGERS!
"HOW IS MY FRIEND, COL. LIVINGSTONE?"
EAST INDIA RING _vs._ INNOCENCE!
CAN ADAMS AND CHOATE CLEAR HIM? etc. etc.
[From _Herald_ Special Correspondent.]
BOSTON, 16th July, 1699.
Your correspondent arrived here last evening, and found (as already
telegraphed) that the arrest and imprisonment of Captain Kidd, the
champion pirate of the world, continues to form the all-absorbing
topic of conversation. Little Boston has got a sensation at last, and
is determined to keep it. Merchants and brokers talk Kidd on 'Change.
Groups at the hotels discuss the nautical hero. Badly-executed
pictures of him stare at you from the shop-windows. Cotton Mather,
the great gun of the clergy here, blazes away at this "child of
iniquity" from the pulpit; and it is understood that a prominent
publishing-house has already arranged to bring out _The Autobiography
of a Buccaneer_. _On dit_, that certain parties are negotiating to
have him appear next season as a lecturer in case he isn't wanted on
The first paroxysm of excitement, which looked to nothing short of
hanging him from the steeple of the Old South Church, has given
place to a conviction that the law had better be suffered to take
its course, inasmuch as the unfortunate captain will surely drift
among the breakers when he is tossed about on the sea of criminal
By the politeness of the colonial authorities, your correspondent
obtained a permit to visit the noted son of Neptune at the Stone
Prison. Sending in his card, he was at once invited into the small but
comfortable apartment where the "scourge of the seas" is confined.
Captain Kidd graciously extended his hand and bade your correspondent
welcome. He is a short, broad-shouldered, powerfully-built man, of
perhaps forty-five or forty-seven years of age. His hair, which is
of dark chestnut and inclined to curl, was combed back from a medium
forehead, and his face was sun-burnt into a rich mahogany hue. His
cold gray eyes were deep set under thick brows that arched and met.
His manner was courteous and dignified. He was dressed in light gray
trowsers of perfect cut, patent-leather boots and a red-and-black
spotted shirt, which displayed in its front a set of superb diamond
studs. From under a Byron collar, _parfaitement_ starched, peeped
the ends of a pale lilac scarf. A magnificent seal-ring decorated the
third finger of his left hand.
The day being excessively warm, his coat and vest had been laid aside.
The room was plainly furnished. The table was littered with charts and
papers, while on a stand were flowers sent to the prisoner by ladies
With the instinct of a true gentleman, he proceeded to put on his coat
and vest, when the following conversation ensued:
_Rep_. "Pray, captain, keep your coat off."
_Capt. K._ "Thank you, if the same to you?"
_Rep_. "Quite the same, I assure you. My visit is informal." (Handing
him a cigar.)
_Capt. K._ "Thanks: I take things coolly--waive ceremony. You know
that's a habit I acquired at sea. You are a reporter?"
_Rep_. "Yes, for the New York _Herald_. I call to ascertain your views
of the situation. The public are anxious to hear your defence; and, if
proper, I would like to ask you a few questions."
_Capt. K._ "Certainly" (lighting his cigar). "You newspaper men
haven't given me a fair show. There's a heap of lying going on about
me. They are hounding me--that's a fact. I've got the evidence to
prove that I'm an injured man. I have a clear conscience, that's one
_Rep_. "A great comfort, no doubt. May I ask, captain, what particular
falsehood has gained currency?"
_Capt. K._ "Yes, sir. I will name one that is an unmitigated slander.
They say that when I came across Moore and corrected him with a bucket
for his impertinence, he was grinding a chisel. Now, sir, that is as
false as ----!"
_Capt. K._ "Yes, sir, 'twas a screwdriver."
_Rep_. "That shall be corrected, captain. Anything else?"
_Capt. K._ "Yes, sir--a bigger lie still. There is a scurrilous
broadside circulating all over the country. Here it is." (He handed me
a copy of verses printed in the _Herald_ of last Tuesday.) "Read
that, if you please, sir: 'My name is Robert Kidd, as I sailed, as I
sailed.' Now, sir, that is a villainous falsehood."
_Rep_. "You didn't sail under that name, then, captain?"
_Capt. K._ "Never. Why, bless your innocent heart, my baptismal name
is _William_. It is of a piece with all their malignant lying, this
persisting in calling me _Robert_."
_Rep_. "It _is_ hard." (Pause.) "Pray, captain, permit me to ask
if the story is true that Mrs. Kidd's trunk was seized by the
authorities, and kept with its contents of gold-dust and diamonds?"
_Capt. K._ "In part true, sir. A perfect outrage, sir. Mrs. Kidd
came on from New York post-haste when she heard that the Antonio had
arrived, and no sooner had she set foot in Boston than the authorities
gobbled up her trunk, leaving her in a strange community with nothing
but a band-box. The public have exaggerated the contents. They were
silver mugs, porringers and plate generally for family use, that
we had been years accumulating. They locked it up in the castle,
and--Poor Sarah! poor Sarah!" (Here the stout man buried his head in
his hands and appeared deeply affected. Your correspondent improved
the opportunity to perfect his notes.)
_Rep_. (after a few minutes). "I am glad to assure you, Captain Kidd,
that it will probably be returned to her to-morrow."
_Capt. K._ (brightening up). "To-morrow? Well, that's good. It
wellnigh broke Sarah's heart. By the way, you are lately from New
York, I suppose. How is my old friend, Colonel Livingstone? Well, I
_Rep_. "I haven't the honor of his acquaintance, but I have no doubt
he is well. New York men usually are. He is a staunch friend of yours,
_Capt. K._ "Ay, that he is. He has always stood by me, ever since he
got me that appointment to command the 'Adventure galley.'"
_Rep_. "You have no doubt, captain, of your ability to substantiate
your entire innocence of these charges brought against you?"
_Capt. K._ "Not the slightest, not the slightest, sir. There was
Captain Wright of the Quedah--you remember him, I dare say: had
command of that nigger crew--what did he say when I went aboard his
ship? Said he, 'Kidd, you remind me of the new-born babe.' I suppose
I can't prove that, for Wright, poor fellow! has been dropped into the
sea, with a twenty-four-pound shot at his heels.
"But what if the jury does convict me? Can't I have a bill of
exceptions? Can't I sue out an injunction to stay proceedings? What
did they let me walk the streets of Boston a whole week for, if I was
such a criminal as some of 'em pretend? I tell you what it is--this
thing is a put-up job. That ring of East India speculators is at the
bottom of it. They just run Bellamont. They know I stand in their way;
but I'll be even with them yet. Mark my word, Mr. Reporter: William
Kidd is going to march down these streets head up, colors flying and
the band playing 'Carry the news to Hiram.'"
_Rep_. "I hope so, captain. One word more. If not too bold, may I
inquire about these stories of your burying treasure on Gardner's
_Capt. K._ "True as gospel preaching! I buried doubloons all over
that island--used to work moonlight nights at it. You can't show me a
square yard of soil there that isn't stuck full of shiners. You see,
it grew to be a perfect passion with me. I stopped on my way up Boston
harbor here, and planted about three millions of pounds sterling. I
forget now which island it was. However, I shall publish a complete
guide to all these points, with diagrams and directions for getting
up stock companies, in the book I'm preparing." (Just then a card was
brought in. Captain K. nodded affirmatively to the attendant, and
your correspondent rose to withdraw.) "I am sorry not to talk with you
longer, but a delegation of the ministry are just outside the door.
They propose to sit down and discuss with me the exceeding sinfulness
of a greed of worldly gain, especially when it runs into piracy.--My
best compliments to you, sir. Good-morning."
_Rep_. "Good-morning, captain."
Your correspondent encountered six white-chokered gentlemen on their
way to interview the great nautical backslider. He is certainly the
lion of the hour.
From what your correspondent has been able to gather it is probable
that a few friends of the captain will succeed in their efforts to
secure Samuel Adams and a promising young lawyer named Choate to
conduct his defence. In this event his chances of a discharge from
custody will prove favorable. It may be that Bellamont and the council
will conclude to send him over for trial in the King's Bench.
Your correspondent inclines to the view that the distinguished marine
plunderer can hardly be held for piracy, but may be convicted of
the murder of the gunner Moore. The story is here that Kidd, with an
iron-hooped bucket, not only finished up things for William Moore,
but left that unhappy man in his gore. As regards jurisdiction, the
government will allege that the awful deed was committed not many
leagues from shore.
A DINNER EXCUSE.
Apologies for poor dinners are generally out of place. But when a lady
has a forgetful husband, who, without warning, brings home a dozen
guests to sit down to a plain family dinner for three or four, it is
not in human nature to keep absolute silence. What to say, and how
to say it, form the problem. Mrs. Tucker, the wife of Judge Tucker of
Williamsburg, solved this problem most happily many years ago. She was
the daughter or niece (I am uncertain which) of Sir Peyton Skipwith,
and celebrated for her beauty, wit, ease and grace of manner. Her
temper and tact were put to the proof one court-day, when the judge
brought with him the accustomed half score or more of lawyers, for
whom not the slightest preparation had been made, the judge having
quite forgotten to remind his wife that it was court-day, and she
herself, strange to tell, having overlooked the fact.
The dinner was served with elegance, and Mrs. T. made herself very
charming. Upon rising to leave the guests to their wine she said:
"Gentlemen, you have dined to-day with Judge Tucker: promise me now
that you will all dine to-morrow with _me_"
This was all her apology, whereupon the gentlemen swore that such a
wife was beyond price. The judge then explained the situation, and the
next day there was a noble banquet.
_Moral_: Never worry a guest with apologies.
A Turkish paper gives an account of a curious forced emigration
which has recently produced great excitement on classic ground. On
the European banks of the Hellespont stands the city of Gallipoli,
interesting as the first possession of the Turks in Europe in 1357;
and nearly opposite to it is Lamsaki, a village long renowned for
the vineyards in its neighborhood, and situated near the site of
the celebrated Lampsacus of classic times. During the autumn the
authorities of Gallipoli came to the conclusion that there were in
that town--as where are there not?--too many owner-less dogs about;
and instead of issuing death-warrants against these vagrants, they
took the extraordinary course of exporting them to their opposite
neighbors across the Hellespont, who were already plentifully
provided with canine treasures. On the arrival of these two thousand
immigrants, who were very unruly on the passage, they started, in
quest of food it may be supposed, to the mountains, but not finding
anything to suit their palates, returned to the town. Here the tug of
war commenced. The Lamsakian canines, on recognizing the situation,
turned out to a dog, and a frightful conflict, with terrible howlings
and barkings, ensued for four hours. At the end of that time the
foreign foe was worsted, and, beating a retreat, endeavored to allay
the pangs of hunger by eating the grapes, and thus doing really
serious damage. The people then had to turn out: two hundred dogs
were killed, and the rest retreated, but of course only to return.
The _Djeridei Havadis_ concludes the account by mildly saying that
the Lamsakians are much disgusted by the eccentric conduct of the
Gallipoli magistrates, who ought of course to have sent their canine
emigrants to a desert island. But how thankful would Philadelphians be
if somebody, imitating the Gallipoli magistrates, would but deport two
thousand of the cats which make night-life hideous--to the New Jersey
* * * * *
The pie is almost an "institution" in America. A single New York
bakery claims that it produces nine hundred pies an hour from one of
its ten capacious ovens, and a total of fifty thousand pies daily,
the year round, forcing the supply occasionally up to sixty-five
thousand--probably on Fourths of July or other festal occasions. Let
the reader busy himself with imagining the total production of pies
by this and all other bakeries of the country during a twelve-month!
Nevertheless, these facilities would be inadequate to popular demand
were the majority of our countrymen of a stomach as unbounded as
that of the Dundee laborer whom a Scotch journal commemorates. This
extraordinary person, having not long since eaten nine large twopenny
pies at a Dundee pie-shop within fourteen and a half minutes,
announced his purpose to eat on the following Monday twelve pies
within twenty-five minutes; and in fact, when the delicacies were put
before him in the shape of a six-pound pile, fourteen inches high, he
consumed half a dozen in five minutes, the next three at the end of
eleven minutes, and the last three in six minutes more, having ended
his repast eight minutes sooner than he had designed--possibly owing
to the pangs of hunger, since he expressed a willingness to occupy the
spare moments with devouring another half dozen pies.
With this item of news in fresh remembrance we chanced to read in a
very old English newspaper the supper eaten, many years ago, by Mr.
Oakley of Stanton, Derbyshire--a repast which makes the Scotchman's,
just recorded, rather frugal by comparison. His first dish, says the
report, was two quarts of milk, thirty eggs, half a pound of butter,
half a pound of sugar, three penny loaves, a quantity of ginger and
nutmeg and an ounce of mustard, all boiled together; his second course
was "apiece of cheese and a pound of bread to it;" the third was half
a pound of bacon, a penny loaf and a quart of ale, followed by three
halfpennies' worth of ginger-bread and a pint of ale; his fourth dish
was a custard of two pounds, an ounce of mustard, some black pepper,
a pint of milk and three pints of ale to it. This banquet he finished
in an hour, and then ungratefully complained of not having had enough;
so, after running three hundred yards by way of appetizer, he sat down
with the rest of the company, who had witnessed his prowess, and drank
pretty freely. Yet even this exploit is hardly equal to the marvel in
digestion reported in the same ancient newspaper of a Truro porter,
who, for a bet of five shillings, ate two pairs of worsted stockings
fried in train oil, and half a pound of yellow soap into the bargain.
The losers of this wager might have been more cautious had they known
that the same atrocious glutton once undertook to eat as much tripe as
would make himself a jacket with sleeves, and was accordingly measured
by a tailor, who regularly cut out the materials, when, to general
surprise, the voracious fellow ate up the whole in twenty minutes.
Compared with these performances some of the current prodigies of
gormandism which the papers so often report are surely as trifling
in amount as they are tame and uninventive in the character of their
* * * * *
The strange accident of Albertacce brought to general notice an
obscure Corsican custom which singularly contrasts with the ordinary
funeral ceremonies of Christendom. The _vocero_, as this rite is
styled, is palpably an inheritance from the classical conquerors of
the island, now preserved only in some of the interior villages.
When the head of a family dies, the body, after being robed in its
handsomest garments, is laid in state on a table in the largest room,
surrounded with lights. Then, five or six hours before the burial,
all the women of the village and the district, clothed in black and
with bare heads, assemble around the corpse, the mother and sisters
of the dead at the feet, the nearest relations next, and so on. When
this assemblage is formed the most renowned poetesses or singers of
their number, with hair disheveled and bleeding faces, and a white
handkerchief waving in the hand, chant in verse the history, virtues
and destiny of the dead. The mournful cadence, the profuse weeping and
the dramatic gestures of the ceremony are striking. The chief mourner
amid her wailing sometimes raises the head or the arm of the corpse,
and plucks out her own hair or freshly tears at her face till the
blood pours again from the wounded skin, while the half-stifled
sobbing of the whole company adds to the effect. When at length the
priest arrives, all is hushed, but the women follow the corpse in
procession to the church, where the ceremony sometimes lasts several
hours. Such, at least, is the account of the _vocero_ given by a
correspondent of the _XIX'e Siecle_, who visited the scene of the
Albertacce accident, where a roomful of celebrants were suddenly
precipitated into the cellar by the giving way of the floor. The mere
mention of the accident came by telegraph, but it appears that twenty
dead and fourteen mangled women were taken from the wreck of the house
where they had been singing their mournful _vocero_.
* * * * *
Unless the Paris postmen are more patient than those of Madrid (who
were on strike a few weeks since), their temper must be ruffled by
the transformations now going on in the names of streets. In France,
and especially in Paris, each overthrow of a dynasty produces a
corresponding revolution in the city directory, for all unpopular
names must be effaced, and the streets which bore them must be
rebaptized in accordance with the political favorites of the hour.
Decrees have already turned the Avenue de l'Empereur into the Avenue
des Lacs; the Avenue Napoleon into the Avenue de l'Opera; the Place
Napoleon into the Place de l'Opera; the Avenue de l'Imperatrice
into the Avenue du Bois de Boulogne; the Boulevard Voltaire
into the Boulevard de Belfort; the Rue Magnan into the Rue
d'Angouleme-Saint-Honore (its old name); the Rue Billault into the Rue
de l'Oratoire-du-Roule, also its old appellation; while there has been
a general effacing of those names which the Communists set up upon
the streets and avenues during their brief lease of power. Scores of
other old names of streets are already changed or are in train of
alteration; but the preceding will suffice for examples. Now, when
one reflects that at the overthrow of Charles X., and again at the
overthrow of Louis Philippe, and again at the overthrow of the Second
Republic, and again at the overthrow of the Second Empire, and again
at the overthrow of the Commune, these alterations wept on, it is
seen that the puzzle offered to Paris people in general, and to Paris
postmen in particular, must be anything but amusing. Should the
Third Republic perish to-morrow, a new christening of streets would
have to be made; but the event only would determine whether the new
names should celebrate Imperialism, or Communism, or Bourbonism, or
Orleanism, or each in its turn. It is rather strange that, with such
an experience, Paris should not take refuge in that tame but enduring
system of street nomenclature which is based on the letters of the
alphabet and the ordinal numbers.
* * * * *
An English magazine not long since described some of the curious
theories and superstitions which prevail among devotees of the
lottery and the gaming-table, regarding "lucky numbers." There are
traditionally fortunate and unfortunate combinations, and there are
also newer favorites, based very often on figures connected with the
chronology of famous men. The career of Napoleon III. would seem to be
considered by gamblers a specially successful one, for since his death
they have been betting furiously on all numbers supposed to bear a
relation to sundry pivotal events of his life. In Vienna, in Milan, in
Rome, the newspapers notice this universal rage among regular patrons
of the lottery for staking their fortunes on Napoleonic numbers; and,
what is also curious, these numbers have in several instances turned
out lucky. Thus, in a late Vienna paper we read that "the death of the
Man of Sedan has brought good luck to the old women of this city who
give themselves up with unquenchable passion to the lottery." At the
last drawing, as the paper goes on to say, the numbers most eagerly
seized upon were 3, for Napoleon III.; 65, for his age; 20, for his
birthday, it falling on the twentieth of the month; 90, as the highest
number in the lottery, hence interpreted to signify "emperor;" and
finally 52, the year of his accession to the throne. To the joy of all
the old lottery-gossips, the luck fell on these numbers, 3, 20, and
90. At Rome the death of Napoleon. III. has furnished new combinations
for all the devotees of the lottery. At Milan the same infatuated
class have "pointed a moral" of their own from the event--a moral
quite different from the one extracted by sermonizers. They have
been playing heavily on number 20 (a gold Napoleon being worth twenty
francs), and on number 13, which latter, as the proverbially unlucky
one, is interpreted to mean the ex-emperor's death. On the first
drawing after his death these two numbers proved to be the lucky ones
of the lottery, and it was then found that there had been a great
number of winners.
* * * * *
Is this present year, 1873, to be, like some famous ones in history,
specially fatal to crowned heads, and to heads that have once been
crowned? During the whole twelve months of 1872 the only European
sovereign who died was Charles XV. of Sweden, while none suffered
irremediable misfortune; and in European royal families the only two
losses by death were Archduke Albrecht and the duke of Guise. But
within the first six weeks of 1873 no less than three persons died who
had at some time worn imperial crowns, and one monarch resigned his
sceptre. First died Napoleon III., on the 9th of January. Then, on the
25th, at Lisbon, died the dowager-empress Amelia, daughter of Prince
Eugene, wife of Pedro I. of Brazil, and stepmother of the present
emperor, Pedro II. On February 8 the empress Caroline Augusta, widow
of Francis I. of Austria, and grandmother of the reigning emperor,
died at Vienna. In Spain the abdication of Amadeo is an incident to
be mentioned in a year opening so ominously to crowned and discrowned
LITERATURE OF THE DAY.
Santo Domingo, Past and Present; with a Glance at Hayti. By
Samuel Hazard. New York: Harper & Brothers.
Mr. Hazard, who has already obliged us with one of the best accounts
of Cuba extant in modern literature, now does a similar service for
Santo Domingo, which he declares to be much more highly favored by
Nature, and which he examined with the United States commission of
1871. This book has the advantage of being prepared within reach of
the British Museum, whose stores of Americo-Spanish authorities have
enabled him to write up with much fullness the historical sketch which
occupies a third of his space. This is a fair, faithful and skillful
condensation, and the most readable narrative we have seen of poor
Dominica's tale of revolutions and wrongs. The personal portion begins
with the author's arrival at the Salt Keys and Puerto Plata, and
follows the steps of the commissioners, with a great many anecdotes
and a sprinkling of artistic sketches, to Samana and Santo Domingo
City; thence overland to the great inland tobacco-mart of Santiago;
and so back to Puerto Plata and Monte Christo, where the commission
ceased its labors, being discouraged by the Haytians from an
exploration within their domain; while Mr. Hazard, resuming his
capacity of private citizen, took his life in his hand and ventured
into the proud Mumbo-Jumbo republic. It is here that the really lively
part of the story commences, and the author becomes the hero of quite
a tragedy of errors. At the first Haytian port, Dauphin Bay, he meets
the port-captain who cannot read his passport, the port-general who
bows and sends him to the chef de police, the chef who asks for half
a dollar without countersigning the document, and lets the pilgrim
go on in quest of the American consul. The only hotel is closed and
"busted:" the consul indicates a billiard-room, whose proprietor feeds
the stranger, informing him at the same time that the authorities take
him for a United States commissioner, and have doubled the guards.
The next visit is to a banker, who plays him a curious practical joke.
Demanding Haytian bank-notes for a few hundred dollars on a letter of
credit, the tourist, after a time of waiting, sees the street on which
the banker lives completely blocked with donkey-carts, drays, mules,
horses with panniers and carts drawn by bullocks. A negro drayman
informs him that "the American commissioner, having come over-night
from Monte Christo, is drawing a draft in Haytian specie, and that the
carts are to load up with it." The banker, being consulted, offers to
store the currency cheap in a warehouse, but advises as a friend that
the draft be reduced, the bullocks sent away, and that the traveler
take a beer. "I took the beer," says Mr. Hazard. A dollar in gold
means just four hundred dollars in Haytian paper: a cocktail cost
the traveler "thirty dollars," and other things in proportion. These
beginnings of make-believe pomposity are followed up by the strangest
revelations wherever the adventurer sets his foot. Going from Cape
Haytien to the citadel and "Sans-Souci" palace of Christophe, the
traveler is charged "two thousand dollars" by the drunken negro
guide, and "a dollar" by the sable sentry of whom he happens to ask a
question. The town of Cape Haytien he finds surrounded by the rotting
bodies of dead animals; the ruins of fine old country-seats are
occupied by filthy black squatters; the new houses going up are built
by the process of throwing single bricks one after the other from the
ground to the bricklayer. Squalor and braggadocio he finds everywhere.
The general who has given him a permit to inspect Christophe's
stronghold sends a messenger secretly in advance with instructions
reversing his order: the commandant refuses lodgings to "the American
who has come to take the fort." Some friends of the consul who
had received a general invitation to accompany the excursion had
previously backed out, because the stranger was an American, a reputed
commissioner, and very unsafe company. Mr. Hazard could only obtain
permission to swing his hammock in the house of a negress; a citizen
who pointed him out to the others made the signs of throat-cutting;
and he left behind him the filibustering reputation of the American
who came to take the citadel. Naturally disgusted by this time, the
author renounced his intention of further land-traveling, and passed
in a steamer around the western end of the island to Port-au-Prince.
Here he was delighted with the entertainment of our present minister
to Hayti, Mr. Bassett, a Philadelphia quadroon of uncommon qualities
and collegiate education. "Some of my most delightful hours," says the
writer, "were spent enjoying the kind hospitalities of Mr. Bassett
and his lady." He represents the minister as living in a palace built
for the emperor Soulouque, and playing a part in the revolutionary
conflicts of the island similar to that of Minister Washburne in
revolutionary Paris. The brave conduct of Mr. Bassett during the
brief presidency of the unhappy Salnave deserves mention. About
three thousand humble blacks, frightened by the rebellion of the
"aristocracy," fled to the protection of our flag, and the minister,
though shot at in the streets and without the support of a single
man-of-war, saved and fed them all. It seems to be not much to its
credit that our nation, though very tender of Hayti when the question
of Dominican annexation is raised, has never reimbursed its ambassador
for this drain on his private purse for the succor of Haytian lives.
With Port-au-Prince, where the writer awaited his steamer's departure
for the United States, the journey terminates. The traveler's
evident disgust with almost every manifestation of Haytian attempts
at self-government is balanced by his rapture with the natural
features of the other end of the island. He writes as an ardent
annexationist--not so much from the humanitarian view of President
White and Dr. Howe, as from the belief that Santo Domingo, if once
made our territory, would soon enrich our treasury from its commerce
and its uncommon adaptability as a watering-place. We have spoken of
this book as very thorough. It is so in every respect--historical,
pictorial and narrative. The list of books pertaining to the subject
occupies alone eight pages of small print: as the author, however,
evidently wishes this list to be approximately complete, and as he
seems to be aware of but few books except those in the British Museum,
we will oblige him, as possibly useful for a future edition, with
the titles of some which he does not give: one of these especially,
Dr. Brown's _History and Present Condition of St. Domingo_, we are
surprised he does not include, as it is one of the most popular and
useful books on the topic, and a manual of which we imagined every
commissioner to have got a chapter by heart daily when on the way to
Las Casas, "Destruccion de las Indias," Sevilla, 1552;
Desportes, "Histoire des Maladies de Saint Domingue," Paris,
1770, 3 vols.; Petit, "Droit Publique des Colonies Francaises"
(containing the "Black Code"), Paris, 1777; Nicolson,
"Histoire Naturelle de Saint Domingue," Paris, 1776; Valverde,
"Idea del Valor de la Isla Espanola," Madrid, 1785; Puysegur,
"Navigation aux Cotes de St. Domingue," Paris, 1787;
D'Auberteuil, "Considerations sur la Colonie, etc.," 1776;
Coulon, "Troubles en Saint Domingue," 1798; Malouet, fourth
volume of his "Colonial History," 1802; Dubroca, "Toussaint
l'Ouverture," 1802; Tonnerre, "Memoires, Histoire d'Haiti,"
Port-au-Prince, 1804; Laujon and Montpenay, "Precis," 1805,
1811, 1814 and 1819; Bercy, "De St. Domingue," Paris, 1814;
Herard Dumesle, "Voyage," Port-au-Prince, 1824; Clausson,
"Revolution de Saint Domingue," 1819; Malo, "Histoire
d'Haiti," Paris, 1825; Wallez, "Biography of General Boyer,"
1826; Macaulay, "Abolition d'Esclavage," 1835; J. Brown,
M.D., "History and Present Condition of Saint Domingo," 1837;
Chaucheprat, "Le Routier des Antilles," 1843; Schoelcher,
"Resultats de l'emancipation anglaise," 1843; Emile Nau,
"Histoire des Caciques d'Haiti," 1855; Saint-Amand, "Histoire
des Revolutions d'Haiti," Paris, 1860; Pradine (ex-minister to
England), "Digest of Laws of Hayti," Paris, 1860.
Thorvaldsen: his Life and Works. From the French of Eugene
Plon, by I.M. Luyster. Boston: Roberts Brothers.
Thorwaldsen's life lasted from 1770 to 1844, and was very industrious.
He was the son of a Copenhagen ship-carver, and received all his bent
from the study of the antique in Italy. The works he left are almost
innumerable, and some of them will have lasting reputation. The finest
perhaps is his medallion of Night, "launched with infinite lightness
into space, carrying in her arms her two children, Sleep and Death."
This masterpiece is said to have been conceived during a sleepless
night in 1815, and modeled in one day. His Lion at Lucerne, made
to commemorate the Swiss guards at Paris who fell in defending
the Tuileries, August 10, 1792, is known to every tourist: it is
altogether conventional, but it is not commonplace. "Never having seen
a live lion," says his biographer, "he went to antique statues for
inspiration:" he thus, at two or three removes from Nature, secured a
grand, monumental conception, fully charged with human intelligence.
The colossi of Christ and his Twelve, now to be seen with the artist's
other works at Copenhagen, and formerly exhibited at the World's Fair
in New York, are imposing and classical, while they perhaps show the
absence of the Christian idea noted in his other clerical subjects.
Thorvaldsen, born a Lutheran, was a spectator in Rome of bigotry and
skepticism, and took refuge in artistic impartiality. A friend once
observing that his want of religious faith must make it difficult
to express Christian ideas in his works, "If I were altogether an
unbeliever," he replied, "why should that give me any trouble? Have
I not represented pagan divinities?--still, I don't believe in them."
The life of this artist was one of consummate worldly success;
the kings of Bavaria and Denmark were the personal friends of the
unlettered son of the ship-carver, as were Horace Vernet, Walter
Scott, Andersen, and Mendelssohn; his casket of decorations was the
amusement of his lady visitors; and his invitations were so constant
that he could not always remember the name of his host: he was at once
parsimonious and charitable, cheerful and melancholy. His artistic
influence was very strong, exhibiting itself in the style of Tenerani,
Galli, Rauch, Drake and Bissen. The life of him by Plon is methodical
and complete, and the American version is illustrated by thirty-five
careful engravings printed in Paris and gummed upon the sheets.
Expiation. By Mrs. Julia C.R. Dorr, author of "Sibyl
Huntington," etc. Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott & Co.
_Expiation_ is an interesting American story, with a background of
lonely woods that protect the rustic privacy of Altona, and a list of
characters that combine city culture and country eccentricity. Patsy,
the grim and self-sacrificing "help," who observes drily of a statue
representing Eve with the apple that "some things is decent and some
things ain't," is the best delineation in it, but the style is always
lively, always feminine and pure, and the conception of the high-bred,
aristocratic family, come to bury their mistakes and miseries in a
forest seclusion, would have been thought worthy of being worked up by
Emily Bronte. The catastrophe, where a dumb nun turns out to be a lost
wife given over to the undertakers in a state of catalepsy, is perhaps
not quite new, but it is striking and vigorously told, and her union
at last with her husband's sons and the girlish bride of one of them
is very touching. The novel is full of local American color, and
entices the attention from the reader's first plunge to the end.
Wanderings in Spain. By Augustus J.C. Hare, author of
"Memorials of a Quiet Life," "Walks in Rome," etc. London:
Strahan & Co.; New York: Dodd & Mead.
This companionable book tells you how to travel over the Spanish
Peninsula by means of a slight knowledge of the Castilian tongue, a
bold infidelity to Murray's _Guide_, a cake of soap and some Liebig's
broth, and a habit of universal politeness. "Pardon me, my sister,"
said the author to a beggar-woman at Barcelona: "does not your worship
see that I am drawing?" "Ah, Dios!" she answered, "blind that I was!
worm that I am! So your worship draws? And I--I too am a lover of the
arts." On the other hand, a stiff-necked Englishman traveling from
Seville to Xeres sent his driver to dine in the kitchen of an inn on
the road. The driver, who in his heart thought that he would have been
doing great honor to a heretic by sitting at the same table with him,
concealed his indignation at the time, but in the middle of the road,
three or four leagues from Xeres, in a horrible desert full of bogs
and brambles, pushed the Englishman out of the carriage, and cried out
as he whipped on his horse, "My lord, you did not find me worthy to
sit at your table; and I, Don Jose Balbino Bustamente y Orozco, find
you too bad company to occupy a seat in my carriage. Good-night!"
Another story, of time-honored repetition, is here restored to what
may possibly have been its true parentage. A gypsy, on his knees
to his priest, is tempted by the father's snuffbox and steals it.
"Father," he says immediately, "I have one more confession: I accuse
myself of stealing a snuffbox." "Then, my son, you must certainly
restore it." "Will you have it yourself, my father?" "I? certainly
not," answered the confessor. "The fact is," proceeded the gypsy,
"that I have offered it to the owner, and he has refused it." "Then
you can keep it with a good conscience," answered the father. Such are
the glimpses of Spanish character. We could easily bear to have more
of them; but the author, accompanied with ladies, and an antiquarian
by habit and nature, gives more sketches of ruins, and of landscapes
which are usually found "hideous," than of the infinite whims of
national manners. His contempt for Spanish landscape appears to us to
amount to a disease: he scorns honest Murray for describing Valencia's
mud huts as "pearls set in emeralds," and says that O'Shea's eulogy of
her as "the sultana of Mediterranean cities" is a glowing picture of
what is dismal enough in reality. In fact, we are afraid that Mr. Hare
has not exactly the artist's eye, and cannot easily admire a scene in
which he is not physically comfortable. But he has rich and heart-warm
descriptions of the Alhambra, the Escorial, and the ruins of Poblet
near Tarragona, where an order of patrician monks lived in incredible
luxury until a time within present memory, when they were scattered by
a tumult and their sculptured home crushed into dry and haggard ruin.
This book cannot compare with his _Walks in Rome_, which was the
careful record of a familiar and a resident; but it is the result of
a very lively curiosity and the record of a mind evidently stored with
history and romance. Excepting Colonel Hay's inimitable _Castilian
Days_, it is the best recent book about the country which it skims
Marie Derville: A Story of a French Boarding-school. From
the French of Madame Guizot de Witt, by Mary G. Wells.
Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott & Co.
French fiction when playing off innocence or when intended for
uncontaminated ears attains a blank intensity of virtue that our own
literature cannot hope to rival. The French "juvenile" still guards
that beauteous ignorance of slang or of other small vice which the
American schoolboy regards as poverty of resource or incapacity, and
which he has put off with his frocks and his _Parent's Assistant_ and
his _Sanford and Merton_. But _Marie Derville_, when its accent of
Berquin is allowed for, is a varied and interesting tale, affording
many a glimpse into that country guarded about with such jealous
walls--middle-class childhood in France. Marie is the child of a
sea-captain who goes to China, disappears for many years, and comes
back at last, after a narrow escape from massacre, saying, "How
strange it was to find myself on the eve of becoming a martyr--to
die for the Christian religion when one is so poor a Christian as
I!" His wife and two or three of Marie's grandparents meantime unite
to conduct a boarding-school on the sea-shore, the history of which
enterprise forms the bulk of the tale. Here the American reader learns
with surprise that the French little girl, who is never actually seen
otherwise than perfect and doll-like, is really subject in private
to a few of the faults common to Miss Edgeworth's heroines, such as
selfishness, gluttony and laziness. But the story of the school is
on the whole sunshiny and prosperous, and _Marie Derville's_ young
readers will follow with delight the career of these prim little
beings, so much more governed than themselves, as they go picnicking
on the sea-beach for mussels, make flannels for the cholera-patients
of a fishing village, or learn to recite the fable of "The Country
Rat" without making it all one word in their hurry. The story is very
healthy and happy, and the translation excellent.
The Teacher's Companion to the American Drawing-slates and Cards. With
Cards. By Walter Smith, Art Master, South Kensington, London, State
Director of Art Education in Massachusetts. Boston: Noyes, Holmes &
Keel and Saddle: A Retrospect of Forty Years of Military and Naval
Service. By Joseph W. Revere. Boston: James R. Osgood & Co.
Helps over Hard Places. For Boys. Second series. By Lynde Palmer.
Illustrated. Troy, N.Y.: H.B. Nims & Co.
Cyclopedia of the Best Thoughts of Charles Dickens. By F.C.
DeFontaine. Nos. 2-5. New York: E.J. Hale & Son.
Liza: A Russian Novel. By Ivan S. Turgenieff. Translated by W.R.S.
Ralston. New York: Holt & Williams.
The Witch of Nemi, and other Poems. By Edward Brennan. London:
Longmans, Green & Co.
The First Differential Coefficient. By John Newton Lyle, A.M. St.
Louis: Review Steam Press.
A Lonely Life. By J.A. St. John Blythe. Philadelphia: T.B. Peterson &
Life of Major-General Meade. Philadelphia: T.B. Peterson & Brothers.
Sunshine and Shadows in Kattern's Life. Boston: Henry Hoyt.