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And as Gluck gazed, fresh grass sprang beside the new streams, and creeping plants grew, and climbed among the moistening soil. Young flowers opened suddenly along the river sides, as stars leap out when twilight is deepening, and thickets of myrtle, and tendrils of vine, cast lengthening shadows over the valley as they grew. And thus the Treasure Valley became a garden again, and the inheritance, which had been lost by cruelty, was regained by love.
And Gluck went and dwelt in the valley, and the poor were never driven from his door; so that his barns became full of corn, and his house of treasure. And, for him, the river had, according to the dwarf's promise, become a River of Gold.
And to this day the inhabitants of the valley point out the place where the three drops of holy dew were cast into the stream, and trace the course of the Golden River under the ground, until it emerges in the Treasure Valley. And at the top of the cataract of the Golden River are still to be seen two black stones, round which the waters howl mournfully every day at sunset; and these stones are still called, by the people of the valley,
The Black Brothers.
THOMAS BABINGTON MACAULAY.
THOMAS BABINGTON MACAULAY was born October 25, 1800.
His father, Zachary Macaulay, was an earnest advocate in England of the emancipation of slaves in the English colonies in the West Indies, and ardently desired to see his son in public life. Macaulay had a brilliant career in the University of Cambridge, and after graduation he appeared first as a champion of the anti-slavery cause, but quickly turned to literature, and wrote an essay on Milton which brought him renown. He did not forsake the notion of public life, however, and was sent to Parliament when he was thirty-two years old. He continued to serve either in Parliament or in office under government from 1832 to 1856.
During that time he made many speeches, and was connected with many great movements, but he left his mark in English history, not as a statesman, but as a splendid writer of prose, and of some striking poems. His essays covered a large array of subjects in English literature, history, and biography, and were as popular as novels. He wrote a History of England, which will be read by many for its attractive style, and its rapid sketches of persons
scenes, even when the readers may think that Macaulay wrote with his mind full of partisan beliefs as to the people about whom he was writing.
a remarkable talker. His memory was very capacious, and when any topic was started he could pour
out a steady stream of most interesting reminiscence on the subject. An English wit, Sydney Smith, who also had a reputation as a brilliant talker, used to be greatly annoyed when he was one of the same company; he could scarcely get in a word.
Later, when Macaulay had lost some of his superabundant health, there
was more opportunity for others, and Smith said one day : “ Macaulay is improved ! Yes, Macaulay is improved! I have observed in him of late flashes of silence.” He was raised to the peerage in 1857, and died December 28, 1859.
The poetry by which Macaulay is known is wholly of one kind. With his historical tastes, and his love of eloquence, he conceived the notion of turning into ballad form some of the stories of Roman history. He chose an easy, swinging measure, and rushed along in it with the rich diction which, as in his history, made his readers listen enchanted, and unmindful of any lapses in accuracy or coloring of simple matters. The main group of poems which he wrote was called Lays of Ancient Rome, and it is the first one in the group which is here given.