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From Chambers' Journal. And some did raise a steadfast gaze
To the face of false King John.
Think ye they feared ? They were Englishmen [The following is a specimen of Lays and Bal
all, lads from Old English History, (London, James Though mutely they sate in their monarch's hall; Burns, 1845,) a beautifully embellished little vol. The heroes of many a well-fought day, ome of original poetry, professedly " by S. M.,” Who loved the sound of a gathering fray, and dedicated to seven dear children, for whose Even as the lonely shepherd loves amusement the verses were originally written.”
The herds' soft bell in the mountain-groves. Generally speaking, history in a versified shape is Why were they silent? There was not one miserable trash ; but here we have something who could trust the word of false King John; very different; and we shall be much surprised if And their cheeks grew pallid as they thought this volume does not long maintain a place amongst On the deed of blood by his base hand wrought; the parlor-window favorites of the young. The Pale, with a brave heart's generous fear, ballads are not only charmingly writen, as far as When forced a tale of shame to hear. mere literary art is concerned, but have, besides, a life-like spirit, and a tone of high imaginative 'T was a coward whiteness then did chase feeling, which are peculiarly their own.] The glow of shame from the false king's face; The fame of the fearless De Courcy
And he turned aside, in bootless pride, Is boundless as the air ;
That witness of his guilt to hide ; With his own right hand he won the land
Yet every heart around him there, of Ulster, green and fair!
Witness against him more strongly bare ! But he lieth low in a dungeon now,
Oh, out then spake the beauteous queen :* Powerless, in proud despair ;
“A captive lord I know, For false King John hath cast him in,
Whose loyal heart hath ever been
Eager to meet the foe; And closely chained him there.
Were true De Courcy here this day, The noble knight was weary
Freed from his galling chain,
Never, oh never should scoffers say,
Their king had sought him a loyal knight,
And sought such knight in vain ! Of the dim unfriendly sky,
Up started the monarch, and cleared his brow, And the proud free stars disdained to gaze
And bade them summon De Courcy now. Through his lattice barred and high.
Swiftly his messengers hasted away,
And sought the cell where the hero lay ; But when the trumpet-note of war
They bade him arise at his master's call, Rang through his narrow room,
And follow their steps to the stately hall. Telling of banners streaming far, of knight, and steed, and plume ;
He is brought before the councilof the wild mêlée, and the sabre's clash,
There are chains upon his hands ; How would his spirit bound !
With his silver hair, that aged knight, Yet ever after the lightning's flash,
Like a rock o'erhung with foam-wreaths white, Night closeth darker round.
Proudly and calmly stands.
He gazes on the monarch
With stern and star-like eye;
That the light of the old man's eye is such,
After long captivity. Or the maimed hound, who hears the chase
His fetters hang upon him Sweep past him in his dreams.
Like an unheeded thing ;
Or like a robe of purple worn The false king sate on his throne of state,
With graceful and indifferent scorn 'Mid knights and nobles free ; “Who is there,” he cried, “who will cross the And strange it was to witness
By some great-hearted king. tide,
How the false king looked aside ; And do battle in France for me?
For he dared not meet his captive's eye!
Thus ever the spirit's royalty
Is greater than pomp and pride!
The false king spake to his squires around, My fame from this darkening blot to clear.
And his lifted voice had an angry sound: Speak—is your silence the silence of fear,
“ Strike ye the chains from each knightly limb! My knights and my nobles ? Frowning and pale Who was so bold as to fetter him? Your faces grow as I tell my tale!
Warrior, believe me, no hest of mine Is there not one of this knightly ring,
Bade them fetter a form like thine; Who dares to battle for his king ?”
Thy sovereign knoweth thy fame too well.” The warriors they heard, but they spake not a He paused, and a cloud on his dark brow fell ; word ;
For the knight still gazed upon him, The earth some gazed upon ;
And his eye was like a star;
And the words on the lips of the false king died, * Prince Arthur of Brittany, whose melancholy fate has been too often the theme of song and story to require no- * Isabella of Angouleme, wife to King John, celebrated tice here.
for her beauty and high spirit.
Like the murmuring sounds of an ebbing tide
And he sends his daring challenge By the traveller heard afar.
Into the heart of France :
Lo, here I stand for England, From the warrior's form they loosed the chain ;
Queen of the silver main! His face was lighted with calm disdain ;
To guard her fame and to cleanse her name Nor cheek, nor lip, nor eye gave token
From slander's darkening stain ! E'en that he knew his chains were broken.
Advance, advance! ye knights of France, He spake no music, loud or clear,
Give answer to my call : Was in the voice of the gray-haired knight; Lo! here I stand for England, But a low stern sound, like that ye hear
And I defy ye all !" In the march of a mail-clad host by night. “ Brother of Cæur de Lion," said he,
From the east and the north came champions " These chains have not dishonored me !"
forthThere was crushing scorn in each simple word, They came in a knightly crowd ; Mightier than battle-axe or sword.
From the south and the west each generous breast
Throbbed at that summons proud.
To the touch of passing shame,
No warrior could withstand
The strength of the hero-spirit Leaving it cold and unbroken still,
Which nerved that old man's hand. That feeling went and came ;
He is conqueror in the battleAnd now to the knight he made reply,
He hath won the wreath of bay; Pleading his cause right crastily;
To the shining crown of his fair renown Skilled was his tongue in specious use
He hath added another ray ; Of promise fair and of feigned excuse,
He hath drawn his sword for England; Blended with words of strong appeal
He hath fought for her spotless name; To love of fame and to loyal zeal.
And the isle resounds to her farthest bounds At length he ceased ; and every eye
With her gray-haired hero's fame. Gazed on De Courcy wistfully.
In the ears of the craven monarch, “Speak !” cried the king in that fearful pause ; Oft must this burthen ring“Wilt thou not champion thy monarch's cause?"'" Though the crown be thine and the royal line,
He is in heart thy king !”
To the bold De Courcy's race,
That they ever should dare their helms to wear Waving his hand to the stately band
Before the king's own face : Who stood by the monarch's throne,
And the sons of that line of heroes As a warrior might wave his flashing glaive
To this day their right assume ; When cheering his squadrons on :
For, when every head is unbonneted, * “I will fight for the honor of England,
They walk in cap and plume! Though not for false King John!"
From Tait's Magazine.
O RABEQUISTA, THE FIDDLER.
Among the living authors of Portugal, who are He paused as if in joyful doubt ;
little, or not at all, known in this country, but To the forests green and the wide blue sky whose merits as poets, dramatists, or prose writers Stretching his arms embracingly,
entitle them to be so, are the brothers Castilho, With stately tread and uplifted head,
A. M. de Souza Lobo, Ignacio Pizarro de M. As a good steed tosses back his mane
Sarmento, J. B. d’Almeida Garrett a very distinWhen they loose his neck from the servile rein;
guished man of letters, and A. Herculano, author Ye know not, ye who are always free,
of the "
Harp of the Believer" and " The Voice How precious a thing is liberty.
of the Prophet,” a young volunteer officer of the “O world !!! he cried ; “sky, river, hill, Liberal party, at the siege of Oporto, who made Ye wear the garments of beauty still;
himself remarkable by his zeal and bravery, and How have ye kept your youth so fair,
who, after the death of Don Pedro, instead of While age has whitened this hoary hair ?”
hurrying with others to the capital to claim the reBut when the squire, who watched his lord, ward of his services, long remained at Oporto, unGave to his hand his ancient sword,
solicitous of court favors, and testified his grief in The hilt he pressed to his eager breast,
an elegy on “the romantic emperor who had Like one who a long-lost friend hath met;
fought against tyranny,” and who had bequeathed And joyously said, as he kissed the blade,
his heart to that “ faithful city.” Of these and “ Methinks there is youth in my spirit yet. other existing ornaments of Portuguese literature, For France ! for France ! o'er the waters blue;
we may take future opportunities of giving some False king-dear land-adieu, adieu !”
notices. The following little story is but a very He hath crossed the booming ocean,
trifling specimen of the abilities of Antonio Felici
ano Castilho, whose name appears under it in a On the shore he plants his lance;
Lisbon periodical of recent date ; but, mere trifle * The reader of German will here recognize an ex- * The present representative of the house of De Courcy quisite stanza from Uhland, very inadequately rendered. lis Lord Kinsale.
FROM THE PORTUGUESE.
as it is, there is something peculiar in the turn of dent his visits there will be acceptable : “In our the adventure.
house," adds Anna, “there live only my mother On a dark night of last winter, there was a and myself. My mother keeps house ; I tend our wedding ball in a certain village near the foot of flock on the mountain in the day time, and at night the Mountain Estrella. The wedding-dinner was work with my mother. Sometimes we sit together over at two o'clock in the afternoon ; and from at our hearth with nothing new to say to one that hour till midnight, the clattering dance of another, which is dull; now and then we have the wooden shoes had been almost incessant. During company of some young women who live about a all this time, the merriment had been kept alive by quarter of a league from us : I came with two of liberal supplies of green wine, by love, and by a them to-day; and we are to return together. But fiddle, the never-failing guest and companion of for them I should have missed this wedding; and every merry-meeting in all the hamlets of this that would have been a pity.”' neighborhood. The fiddler, who possessed nothing The dancing was renewed ; Baptist surpassed in the world but a musical ear, (for which we do himself, if that were possible. The fiddle seemed not know how much per centage he paid out of animated with all the fire, all the brilliant freshthe hours of industry,) had been one of the nu- ness of a newly rising passion. It imparted more merous candidates for the bride ; but having been life, more ecstasy to the dancers; and Anna, every supplanted by the pecuniary charms of his happy time that the mazy whirl brought her near to the rival, he was here on this occasion—no unhappy musician, showed by a look, a movement, an air, man either, but in good humor with his ill fortune. that she felt something more than gratitude for the A philosophical fiddler, he had not only had the performer. The bow of Cupid, to use the phracourage to attend the marriage-ceremony without seology of the poetico-arcadian schools, never concealing himself behind one of the church-pillars twanged off more sharp and quick arrows than did and rushing forth at the critical moment with a the bow of a fiddle on this night. The brideromantic cry of despair, to the dismay of the as- groom, fearing that the transport might not subsembly, but he had helped to twine the arches of side before sunrise, availed himself of a momentpine-boughs for the passage of the triumphant ary pause to call Baptist apart into the garden, and couple. At dinner he had filled repeated bumpers there, after some trifling apologetical preamble, to the health of both, and also of a tawny rustic with which Baptist would have willingly dislass who happened to sit next to him; and all the pensed, gave him to understand, in as few words evening afterwards, and all the night, he animated, as his embarrassment and the sense of his discourby his quaint old minuets, and his inexhaustible tesy would permit, that it was time to close the store of old-fashioned tunes, the fun of the entertainment, and for the guests to retire. Bapdancers, male and female, of that economical club, tist, who, like all happy lovers, had kept wholly whose vagaries were superbly illuminated by four out of view the fact, that such pleasure must have classical iron lamps, stuck against four newly- an end, and in whom (trust the hearts of men !) whitewashed walls. Some malicious judges of mo- the thought of his first love, now hopeless, was tives—for there are such even in the country-did already partially eclipsed by the radiant image of not fail to set down his gratuitous perseverance to his new star; Baptist stood undecided for an a lurking desire of putting off as long as he possi- instant whether he should obey the master of the bly could, the fatal moment when the company house, thanking him for his good cheer, or break should disperse, and the doors of his ungrateful the fiddle about his ears. A visit to the cellar, to fair one exclude him from her presence. Others which the host sagaciously invited him, gave him merely supposed that his zeal was inspired by a time to recover his temper; and, thanks to a conewly awakened fancy for another pair of bright pious draught that prepared him for the journey, eyes, and that he was naturally unwilling to quit ihe inward strife that had arisen between the two a scene where the lady of his thoughts saw him spirits that contend for mastery in the human unquestionably playing the first fiddle. As to us, breast, terminated in the victory of the good angel. without rejecting or admitting either of these opin- During this absence of the life and soul of the ions, we think it more orthodox to believe, ihat party, the greater number of the guests disaphis pure self-love, as an artist, is a sufficient ex- peared : and Anna, urged by her companions to planation. Paganini in the theatre at Paris, or withdraw, and persuaded as were the rest, that on the stage of the opera-house in London, was Baptist would not come back, sadly set out on her not a greater personage than our poor fiddler, in a way home. farm-house of the Estrella mountain.
Returning to the room, and finding it deserted During one of those brief intervals of the ball, by her who alone had filled it, to his eyes, Baptist when the din of music and feet ceased, only to wished his host good-night. Hardness of heart is give play to the much more uproarious clamor of not the vice of the truly happy. The bridegroom conversation, our hero, whom we shall call Bap- accompanied him a few steps beyond the threshold, tist, found his opportunity of insinuating a sly and laughingly told him, in a key sufficiently loud compliment into the ear of her to whom his looks to ensure his being overheard by his wife, that the had already been still more eloquent; a smile and beauteous Anna, the power and envy of the night, a modest look of pleased acknowledgment gave was the best tender of flocks in the district ; that him fresh force for a second attack; he dared 10 she had a good fortune ; excellent hands for the whisper the word love; he saw her blush, and spindle, and a voice for singing that charmed all once more he saw her smile; he ventured to who heard her; that he therefore advised him to seize a pretty litile hand of this damsel fifteen cultivate the good graces of the mother, for that years old ; and from the moment of that endured he well knew the girl would think herself foraudacity, he considered his felicity certain. He tunate to be able to warble her youth away with asks her name, Anna; her condition, single; her such an accompaniment : residence, another farm-house, distant about half a league in a locality that he is unacquainted with ;
Oh, life of my life! but which she describes so minutely, that it is evi-| Who can show me your fellow
At fiddle or fire
hear the bleatings of her goats hard by; and, if On the mountain Estrella?
the stars be not utterly hostile to his hopes, he
may, in the morning, hiding himself where he And with this he bade him farewell ; but not cannot be discovered, watch her as she passes before he had further explained, what Baptist had with her flock, blithely treading the dew in her litalready known above two hours, that the house was lle slippers of orange-tree wood, her distaff stuck situate at the top of a winding steep, between hills ; in her girdle, a shade of soft anxiety setting off that by day two great oak trees, standing close the sweetest smile that ever dawned from under together on the right of the road, would show him the broad flap of a large black hat; and, perhaps, that he was near the place, and that at night he he might hear that chant of the mountain, and would be led to it by the bleating of numerous now, more than ever, the song for him, sent forth goats folded in the pen, so that there could be no
to the echoes by the most bewitching voice of the risk of going astray among those wilds. The night Beira-altawas still dark. Baptist at first, though his mind was all abroad, took the melancholy road that led
Oh, life of my life! to his home. But what was he to do there?
Who can show me your fellow
At fiddle or fife Sleep? who ever slept on the first night of a new
On the mountain Estrella? love-fever?—To lie awake and sigh? that is better and more poetically done on the open stage of As these fancies thickened upon him, Baptist,
To iranscribe from the tablets of his who was absolutely carried away with them, and heart an account of his sensations and wishes in a was every moment quickening his pace, less atletter? Anna probably cannot read; and he him- tentive to the road than to the stars, with which self, satisfied with his talent as a musical artist, true lovers have always an indefinable sympathy, never felt any ambition to accumulate knowledge. suffered himself to be hurried on, he hardly knew Baptist does not know how to write. All such of whither, till he suddenly remembered—what none my readers as have passed through the paradise but a lover would have forgotten for a momentof youth will readily divine, without my telling that he ought to examine, by the notices which he thein, whither the steps of Baptist led him against had been warned to take heed of, whether he was the bent of his wiser intention. As full of wine on his right course or not. He stopped, he and passion as an elegy of Propertius, with his doubted, he was about to turn back, when lo! he fiddle under his arm, and his Anna in his heart, observed, on the side of the path, certain trees, and with as good speed as the obscurity of the which might very possibly be the two oak-trees : hour, and the ruggedness and strangeness of the he flies towards them; they are the very same; way permit, ther goes, entreating the solitude and that is the exact site—a site as familiar to to favor his blind searth of the temple of his divin- him, now that he views it for the first time, as if ity, and already, in spirit, making the tour of those he had been born there. He accelerates his walls which he fancies he discovers in every white speed-his heart leaps as if it wished to get there stone that he discerns before him.
before him—the sandy and barren soil of the steep And what a wretched gratification is he seek- seems to him a gentle declivity, matted with roseing! He will not see her; no, he will not hear leaves; and, to crown his success, he hears the her voice. At such an untimely season of the bleat of a lamb close by: he who hears the lamb night, he will not even, through some compas- cannot be far off from the shepherdess. He sionate crack in the door, have his eyes fascinated rushes towards the spot where so tender a greetby the fickering gleam of a lamp lighted by that ing invites him. He already discovers the withies very hand which so lately trembled in his own. of the fold-he almost touches them. All at once
herse will not know to-morrow that he has the ground gives way under him, and he finds been keeping watch near her, and surrounding her himself at the bottom of a pitfall. Astounded dreams with his love. No sign will remain to with the shock, though he had lighted on his feet, reveal to her the devotion with which he will have with his fiddle safe under his arın, he at first been kissing, as a pilgrim kisses a reliquiary, the imagined that some evil witch had laid this wicked insensible walls that enclose the talisman of his trap for him ; and he now called to mind that an existence! When she shall arise and go forth old woman at the wedding had very constantly with Aurora, placid and rosy like her, and, like eyed him with an expression of countenance of no her, hailed with delight by everything that be- good augury :-but after his first confusion was a holds her, not a vestige of his kisses will be left little allayed, he perceived that he was in one of on the stones of her house, on the threshold of those deep holes which it is the custom to excaher door ; not one of all the sighs that night shall vate on the mountain to catch wolves. These have gathered in its lap will be felt with the holes are made wider at bottom than at top, so as morning breezes, as they sigh among the foliage. to make it impossible for the prisoner to escape; No; but he will have enjoyed, in three or four the mouth is lightly covered with a few slender hours of careful vigil, whole ages of felicity. It boughs, which, yielding to the pressure of any is even possible, that something of reality may he weight, let it fall through, and being elastic, remingled with his delicious reveries : it may sume their deceitful appearance : as a lure 10 the chance, that, while with ear applied to a case- beast of prey at night, it is usual to place behind ment, and breath suspended, he interrogates the this masked abyss, and within a strong fence of silence of the sleeping house, some audible sound, hurdles, a kid or a lamb, whose cries for the dam some word addressed by the daughter to her entice its enemy to certain destruction. The mother, some rustling of the mattress, stuffed hopelessness of evasion from such a den, for the with the straw of Indian corn, will aid his fancy rest of the night, was evident to poor Baptist. to picture the interior of that Eden, and to per- He tried to accommodate himself to his situation. ceive, as it were, through his ears, the position, He had not room to console himself, as men incarthe attitude, the expression, the thoughts, of the cerated are wont to do, by pacing to and fro to most beautiful of slumberers. He will, at least, give life to his imprecations. He laid himself down in the pit to meditate on the abode of his them in chanting prose, fiddling all the while, and love, which he had left above him in the land of huddling two or three words into every notethe living. Nature makes but little difference between dreams and the visionary cogitations of
“Pit of terror-Night of horror-How I trem
Baptist was now hall-musing, half-sleeping, entreating to be quickly released, and intimating when he heard the treacherous roof of his den that he would tell them all about it presently. X giving way again, and immediately afterwards ladder was the first thing to be procured ; one was down plumped some heavy substance. He jumped immediately found in the nearest farm-house, the up in consternation-Who is there !--no answer. inmates of which, as anxious as their neighbors With hair on end, head dripping with cold sweat, to gratify their curiosity, came running with the and tongue tied with terror, he crouched hard rest to witness such an unexampled sight. The against a side of the pit, and endeavored with pit was surrounded with people of both sexes. eyes fixed in stupid amazement, to make out the The ladder was hardly fixed, when Baptist clamcompanion of his misfortune :-and lo, a wolf, a bered up as fast as he possibly could, without the great wolf, an immense wolf! He sees his eyes use of his hands—for he was still fiddling-uill he glaring like lamps, and that ferocious light shows, reached the top, more dead than alive. Scarcely or seems to show, two rows of perfectly white had he found himself amid kindly human faces, teeth, with the formidable tusks; a sight sufficient and in the light of one of the loveliest mornings to disconcert, not only one fiddler, but a whole that ever shone on the Estrella, when, laying down philharmonical society. Without defence, or his fiddle to make the sign of the cross, he dismeans of flight, or chance of succor, and watching covered at his side his own Anna. Hers was the the steady and gradually imboldened attention ladder that had saved him; hers the neighboring with which his adversary measured him, he was farm-house ; and the soft scarlet kerchief of cotton, attempting in his agony to shrink into the very that was instantly offered to him to wipe his foreearth that immured him, when an involuntary head, was taken from her own neck. touch of one of the strings of his fiddle caused it He was conducted to her house, (it was possibly to sound—the animal was startled and recoiled two only because it was the nearest at hand,) and steps, which he had at last slowly and with a long placed by the hearth, where mother and daughter pause between each made towards the musi- vied with each other in making him comfortable, cian. Baptist, therefore, suspecting that there and, after serving him with a good breakfast, and may be some occult centrifugal virtue in the art giving him a thousand unequivocal proofs of their of Orpheus, draws his fiddlestick with a tremulous benevolence, they left him to take five or six hours hand across the bow. It is now the wolf's turn of delicious repose on a well-filled and wellto shrink; he cowers as if he would bury him- smoothed palliasse of Indian-corn straw. self in the ground; the rage in his eyes is sub- In less than three months after that breakfast, dued; he turns away his head ; he manifests his Baptist was the husband of Anna. The artist fears by a thousand signs. Baptist, gathering who had figured so brilliantly at other people's courage from his enemy's cowardice, without wedding-parties performed prodigies at his own. farther preparatory tuning, flings him off a waltz, The wolf, which Baptist and Anna would not and, observing that the first effect of his instru- suffer to be destroyed, was carefully secured ; and, ment is in no wise diminished, overpowers him being of a tamable age at the time of his capture, with an inundation of notes, in tune and out of is now a part of the family, and is kept in better tune, enough to rive the entrails of the earth. It condition than ever wolf was kept before. The was a genuine scene, worthy of the opera in the friendly evening gatherings at ihis farm-house Rua-dos-Condes. Minuets, gavottes, country- are celebrated in ihe district ; and all the neighdances, waltzes, cotillons, jigs, and rigadoons, bors hope and trust that the harmony which reigns succeeded one another without break or transition, there will never be interrupted—that, in the and with a rapidity, a prodigality, that was mar- mutual relation of husband and wife, and of vellous; while now and then he wrenched his mother and son-in-law, the fiddle will never be eyes off his crouching adversary to look up at the out of tune. aperture for the glimpse of day, to which alone he could trust for his deliverance. But that night had sworn to last at least fifty hours, for the poor
From the London Times, of April 28. fiddler. The centrifugal charm of his violin ap
POLITICS OF THE AMERICAN CONTINENT. peared to have as much influence on Aurora as on the wolf; keeping them both aloof. The perspi- The discussions now going on in the Republic ration which his fears had at first drawn, was now of Texas between the American party which seeks streaining down him from sheer fatigue. His arm, to be absorbed in the federal union of the Ameribefore so laboriously exercised at the ball, was be- can states, and the national Texan party, which ginning to fail him, when at last the gleams of day upholds the independent interest of the new state, peered through the false trellis-work over his head; are matters of the deepest interest not only to the and soon afterwards, steps, voices, and laughter, annexation question of the present day, but to the were distinguishable near the cavern. The shep- future destinies of the continent of North America. herds who had laid the trap were coming to see if If Texas at once flings away her national existthey had caught anything; and wondering at the ence, and makes herself subservient to the policy strange subterranean music, they hastened towards of the United States, it is highly improbable that it with a thousand wild conjectures. Having re- any other new state will attain to independence in moved the boughs that covered the mouth of the the southern regions of North America, and the pit, they looked down, eager to learn what this progress of the dominions of the cabinet of Washextraordinary revel could be. Baptist, fearing to ington will be as rapid as the decay of its defencelose, by one moment's intermission of his music, less and ungoverned southern neighbors. More the safety he had won at so much cost, answered than 20 years have elapsed since Mexico threw