Изображения страниц

against him. And the result is, that, while | limit appears to us wisely chosen – he has Goethe is shown to be a man, and as a man selected judiciously and arranged skilfully; with the temperament as well as the faculties and we owe to him a very complete and satof the poet to have done much he ought not isfactory account of the life and writings of to have done and left undone much which he the greatest literary man of modern Europe. ought to have done, he is also shown to have Most


who know of Goethe anything possessed one of the noblest and sweetest na- more than his name, know of his Strasburg tares erer given to erring man, and to have passion ; and those who know and honor him lived as ever in the eyes of the Great Task- best have had hard thoughts of him for his master who had given him his talents, and treatment of Frederika. Why he did not was by that gift calling him to discharge great marry her, has been often asked ; and never duties. Whatever other causes may here- very satisfactorily answered. Mr. Lewes digafter militate against Goethe's popularity in cusses the question with marked good sense England among persons whose judgment is and moderation, and this is his verdict : worth anything on such a question, the old “I believe, then, that the egoism of genius, misconceptions of his character and conduct which dreaded marriage as the frustration of must henceforth go into Time's waste-paper- a career, had much to do with Goethe's rebasket.

nunciation of Frederika ; not consciously, Bat Mr. Lewes has not written a polemical perhaps, but powerfully: Whether the alarm book, though our first thought of it has been was justifiable, is another question, and is connected with the vast amount of rubbish it It is mere assumption to say marriage would

not to be disposed of with an easy phrase. is calculated to render finally obsolete among have crippled his genius. Had he loved her 13. It is, on the contrary, an animated par- enough to share a life with her, his experiratire, that never flags in interest, and leaves ence of women might have been less extenthe reader at the end of the second volume sive, but it would assuredly have gained an longing for more ; the work of a man writing element it wanted. It would have been Ob a subject of which he knows much more deepened. He had experienced, and he could than he tells, and whose chief difficulty has of woman to man; but he had scarcely ever

paint (no one better), the exquisite devotion been to compress his ample materials into the felt the peculiar tenderness of man for woman, prescribed space. We have been so accus- when that tenderness takes the form of vigitomed of late to lives of inferior men written lant protecting fondness. He knew little, in many volumes by men inferior to them, that and that not until late in life, of the subtile at first it seems difficult to believe that an ade- interweaving of habit with affection, which quate life of Goethe, who lived eighty-three makes life saturated with love, and love ityears, and whose actuating principle was aims of life. He knew little of the exquisite

self become dignified through the serious " ohne Hast, ohne Rast," can be compressed companionship of two souls striving in emuinto two volumes. But a thorough study of lous spirit of loving rivalry to become better, his subject, a careful preparation extended to beco wiser, teaching each ether to soar. through many years, a conscientious devotion He knew little of this ; and the kiss, Fredeto a task voluntarily undertaken, and trained rika! he feared to press upon thy loving lips skill in anthorship, have enabled Mr. Lewes

- the life of sympathy he refused to share

with thee to convey a lively representation of the man

-are wanting to the greatness of

his works." Goethe as he lived, of the society of which he was the centre, of the general characteristics But on the charge that Goethe sacrificed of the time, and to blend with all this picture his genius to a Court life, Mr. Lewes can of the man and his environment ample ana- acquit his client with the consent of all men lytical criticism on his principal writings, and of sense. intelligent discussion of the principles upon “As we familiarize ourselves with the dewbich poetry and prose fiction should be con- tails of this episode, there appears less and dacted. To say that more might be written less plausibility in the often iterated declaon all these subjects, is to say simply that Mr. mation against Goethe on the charge of his Lewes has written a work of art, and not having sacrificed his genius to the Court." thrown before the public a quarry of raw ma- play of rhetoric. Let us for a moment con

It becomes indeed a singularly foolish disterial or a bundle of separate treatises. With-sider the charge. He had to chouse a career. in the space he has chosen to fill - and the That of poet was then, even more than now,

[ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]


[ocr errors][ocr errors]

on it, and not very legibly either, so that it cheeks. They moved hurriedly to and fro,
taade what I wished I could, the tour of scarcely remembering what they were in
Scotland before reaching me.”

search of, and evidently deeming his state of

the greatest peril. Traynor, the only one
Sir Horace read over his letter carefully as whose faculties were unshaken by the shock,
though it had been a despatch, and when he sat quietly beside the bed, his fingers firmly
had done, folded it up with an air of satis- compressed upon the orifice of the vessel.
faction. He had said nothing that he wished while, with the other hand, he motioned to
unsaid ; and he had mentioned a little about them to keep silence.
everything he desired to touch upon. He Glencore lay with closed eyes, breathing
then took his drops" from a queer-looking long and labored inspirations, and at times
little phial he carried about with him, and convulsed by a slight shivering. His face,
having looked at his face in a pocket-glass, and even his lips, were bloodless, and his eye-
he half closed his eyes in reverie.

lids of a pale livid hue. So terribly like the
Strange, confused visions were they that approach of death was his whole appear-
flitted through his brain. Thoughts of am- ance, that Upton whispered in the “ doctor's
bition the most daring, fancies about health, ear
speculations in politics, finance, religion, " Is it over? Is he dying?
literature, the arts, society – all came and “No, Upton," said Glencore, for, with
went. Plans and projects jostled each other the acute hearing of intense nervousness, he
at every instant. Now his brow would had caught the words -

os It is not so easy
darken, and his thin lips close tightly, as to die."
some painful impression crossed him ; now

66 There now

- no more talkin' no dis-
again a smile, a slight laugh even, betrayed coorsin' -- azy and quiet is now the word.”
the passing of some amusing conception. It “ Bind it up and leave me - leave me
was easy to see how such a nature could suf- with him;” and Glencore pointed to Upton.
fice to itself, and how little he needed of that " I darn't move out of this spot,” said
give-and-take which companionship supplies. Billy, addressing Upton. “You'd have the
He could -- to steal a figure from our steami blood coming out, per saltim, if I took away
language ---- he could " bank his fires," and my finger.
await any energy, and, while scarcely con "You must be patient, Glencore,” said
suming any fuel, prepare for the most trying Upton, gently; “ you know I'm always ready

powers. A hasty move- when

you want me.
ment of feet overhead, and the sound of "s And you 'll not leave this? you 'll not
voices talking loudly, aroused him from his desert me?" cried the other, eagerly.
reflections, while a servant entered abruptly “ Certainly not; I have no thought of go-
to say, that Lord Glencore wished to see him ing away.”

6. There, now,


your prate, both of
“Is his lordship worse ? ” asked Upton. ye, or, by my conscience, I'll not take the

No, sir ; but he was very angry with the responsibility upon me I will not!” said
young lord this evening about something ; Billy, angrily. 56'T is just a disgrace and a
and they say, that with the passion he opened shame that ye havn't more discretion,”
the bandage on his head and set the vein a Glencore's lips moved with a feeble at-
bleeding again. Billy Traynor is there now tempt at a smile, and in his faint voice he
trying to stop it.'

[ocr errors][merged small]

said "I'll go up stairs,” said Sir Horace, ris 6. We must obey the doctor, Upton ; but ing, and beginning to fortify himself with don't leave me." caps, and capes, and comforters — precau Upton moved a chair to the bedside, and tions that he never omitted when nuoving sat down without a word. from one room to the other.

“ Ye think an artery is like a canal, with

a lock-gate to it, I believe," said Billy, in a

low, grumbling voice to Upton," and you
forget all its vermicular motion, as ould Fab-

ricius called it, and that is only by a coaga-
GLENCORE's chamber presented a scene of lum, a kind of barrier, like a mud breakwa-
confusion and dismay as Upton entered. The ter. Be off out of that, ye spalpeens! be off
sick man had torn off the bandage from his every one of yez, and leave us tranquil and
temples, and so roughly as to re-open the paceable !
half-closed artery, and renew the bleeding. This summary command was directed to
Not alone the bed-clothes and the curtains, the various servants, who were still moving
but the faces of the assistants

around him, about the room in imaginary occupation. were stained with blood, which seemed the The room was at last cleared of all save Upmore ghastly from contrast with their pallid ton and Billy, who sat by the bedside, his



[ocr errors]

hand still resting on the sick man's forehead. peated to Harcourt that Billy saw the boy Soothed by the stillness, and reduced by the going towards the sea-shore, and in this diloss of blood, Glencore sank into a quiet rection he now followed. Ilis frequent excursleep, breathing softly and gently as a child. sions had familiarized him with the place, 80

"Look at him now," whispered Billy to that even at night Harcourt found no diffiUpton, and you 'll see what philosophy culty in detecting the path and keeping it. there is in ascribin' to the heart the source About half-an-hour's brisk walking brought of all our emotions. He lies there azy and him to the side of the Lough, and the nar. comfortable, just because the great bellows is row flight of steps cut in the rock, which working smoothly and quietly. They talk descended to the little boat-quay. Here he about the brain, and the spinal nerves, and halted, and called out the boy's name several the soliar plexus, but give a man a wake, times. The sea, however, was running mounWashy circulation, and what is he? He's tains high, and an immense drift, sweeping just like a chap with the finest intentions in over the rocks, fell in sheets of scattered foam the world, but not a sixpence in his pocket beyond them; so that Harcourt's voice was to carry them out! A fine, well-regulated, drowned by the uproar. A small shealing steady-batin' heart is like a credit on the under the shelter of the rock formed the home bank- you draw on it, and your draft is n't of a boatman ; and at the crazy door of this dishonored!”

humble cot Harcourt now knocked violently. "What was it brought on this attack?The man answered the summons at once, asked Upton, in a whisper,

assuring him that he had not heard or seen ** A shindy he had with the boy. I was n't any one since the night closed in ; adding, here. There was nobody by; but when I at the same time, that in such a tempest a met Master Charles on the stairs, he flew boat's crew might have landed without his past me like lightning, and I just saw by a knowing it. glimpse that something was wrong:

He “ To be sure,” continued he, after a pause, rushed out with his head bare, and his coat " I heard a chain rattlin' on the rock soon all open, and it sleetin’ terribly! Down he after I went to bed, and I'll just step down went towards the Lough, at full speed, and and see if the yawl is all right.' never minded all my callin' after him.' Scarcely had he left the spot, when his " Has he returned ?” asked Upton. voice was heard calling out from below " Not as I know, sir. We were too much “She's gone! — the yawl is gone! the taken

up with the lord to ask after him.” lock is broke with a stone and she's away!" "I'll just step down and see,” said Sir “How could this be? no boat could leave Horace, who arose, and left the room on tip- in such a sea,

” cried Harcourt eagerly. toe.

“. She could go out fast enough, sir. Tho To Upton's inquiry all made the same an- wind is north-east due; but how long she PU swer. None had seen the young lord - none keep the sea is another matter.”' could give any clue as to whither he had « Then he'll be lost!” cried Harcourt, gone. Sir Horace at once hastened to Har- wildly. -court's room, and after some vigorous shakes, " Who, sir - who is it?" asked the man, succeeded in awakening the Colonel, and by

" Your master's son ! cried he, wringing dint of various repetitions at last put him in his liands in anguish. possession of all that had occurred.

"O, murther! murther! screamed the We must look after the lad,” cried Har- boatman, " we'll never see him again. Tis court, springing from his bed, and dressing out to say — into the wild ocean he'll be with all baste. “ He is a rash, hot-headed blown! fellow ; but even if it were nothing else, he “ Is there no shelter-spot he could might get his death in such a night as this.” make for?The wind dashed wildly against the win

« Barrin' the islands, there's not a spot dow-panes as he spoke, and the old timbers between this and America." of the frame rattled fearfully.

6. But he could make the islands -- you are “Do you remain here, Upton. I'll go in sure of that?” search of the boy. Take care Glencore hears “ If the boat was able to live through the nothing of his absence."

say. But sure I know him well; he 'll never And with a promptitude that bespoke the take in a reef or sail ; but sit there, with the man of action, Harcourt descended the stairs helm hard up, just never carin' what 'came

of him! 0, musha! musha! what druv him The night was pitch dark ; sweeping gusts out such a night as this?" of wind bore the rain along in torrents, and

so Come, it's no time for lamenting, my the thunder rolled incessantly, its clamor in- man; get the launch ready, and let us follow creased by the loud beating of the waves as him. Are you

afraid?" they broke upon the rocks. Upton had re " Afraid!” replied the man, with a touch

and set out.

but may

of scorn in his voice; “faix, it's little fear “Better than ourselves, if she was manned.
troubles me;


won't like to be Luff! luff! that's it!" And as the boat in her yourself when she's once out. I've turned up to wind, sheets of spray and foam none belongin' to me-- father, mother, chick flew over her. “ Master Charles hasn't his or child; but you may have many a one equal for steerin', if he was n't alone. Koep that's near to you."

her there ! - now! steady, sir !“My ties are, perhaps, as light as your

“ Here's a squall coming,

cried Harown,” said Harcourt. “Come, now, be alive. court; “I hear it hissing,” I'll put ten gold guineas in your hand if you Down went the peak, but scarcely in time, can overtake him."

for the wind, catching the sail, laid the boat I'd rather see his face than have two gunwale under. After a struggle, she right hundred," said the man, as, springing into ed, but with nearly one-third of her filled the boat, he began to haul out the tackle with water. from under the low half-deck, and prepare “I'd take in a reef, or two reefs," said for sea.

the man; “but if she could n't rise to the "Is your honor used to a boat, or ought say, she 'll fill and go down. We must carry I to get another man with me?” asked the on, at all events." gailor.

“So say I. It's no time to shorten sail, “ Trust me, my good fellow, I have had with such a sea running. more sailing than yourself, and in more The boat now flew through the water, the treacherous seas, too," said Harcourt, who, sea itself impelling her, as with every

sudden throwing off his cloak, proceeded to help the gust the waves struck the stern. other, with an address that bespoke a prac "She's a brave craft," said Harcourt, as tised hand.

she rose lightly over the great waves, and The wind blew strongly off the shore, 80 plunged down again into the trough of the that scarcely was the foresail spread, than sea; “but if we ever get to land again. the boat began to move rapidly through the I'll have combings round her to keep ler water, dashing the sea over her bows, and dryer." plunging wildly through the waves.

- Here it comes ! -- here it comes, sir!" “Give me a hand now with the hal'yard," Nor were the words well out, when, like a said the boatman ; " and when the main-sail thunder-clap, the wind struck the sail, and is set, you 'll see how she 'll dance over the top bent the mast over like a whip. For an of the waves, and never wet us.

instant it seemed as if she were going down "She's too light in the water, if any- by the prow; but she righted again, and, thing,” said Harcourt, as the boat bounded shivering in every plank, held on her way. buoyantly, under the increased press of 6. That's as much as she could do," said

the sailor; "and I would not like to ax her “Your honor's right; she 'll do better with to do more. half a ton of iron in her. Stand by, sir, al I agree with you,” said Harcourt, ways, with the peak hal yards ; get the sail secretly stealing his feet back again into his aloft in when I give you the word.” shoes, which he had just kicked off. " Leave the latter to me, my man,

," said “ It's fresh’ning it is every minute,” said Harcourt, taking it as he spoke. “ You 'll the man; "and I'm not sure that we could Boon see that I'm no new hand at the make the Islands if it lasts." work."

66 Well — what then?" “She's doing it well,” said the man. - There's nothing for it but to be blowth “Keep her up! keep her up! there is a spit out to say,” said he, tragically, as, having of land runs out here ; in a few minutes more filled his tobacco-pipe, he struck a light, and we'll have say-room enough.

began to smoke. The heavier roll of the waves, and the in “The very thing I was wishing for," said creased force of the wind, soon showed that Harcourt, touching his cigar to the bright they had gained the open sea; while the ashes. “How she labors — do you think she atmosphere, relieved of the dark shadows of can stand this?” the mountain, seemed lighter and thinner " She can, if it's no worse, sir." than inshore.

“ But it looks heavier weather outside." " We're to make for the islands, you say, “ As well as I can see, it's only be

ginnin'." “Yes. What distance are they off ?” Harcourt listened with a species of ad

“ About eighteen miles. Two hours, if the miration to the calm and measured sentiwind lasts, and we can bear it."

ment of the sailor, who, fully conscious And could the yawl stand this?” said of all the danger, yet never, by a word Harcourt, as a heavy sea struck the bow, and or gesture, showed that he was furried or came in a cataract over them.



sir ?"



"You have been out on nights as bad as "Could the boy have reached this, think this, I suppose ? " said Harcourt.

"May be not quite, sir, for it's a great eay The man shook his head mournfully, withis runnin'; and, with the wind off shore, we out speaking. could n't have this, if there was n't a storm " How far are we from Glencore ?" blowing further out."

“ About eighteen miles, sir ; but more by " From the westward, you mean?land."

"Yes, sir — a wind coming over the whole “ You can put me ashore, then, somewhere ocean, that will soon meet the land wind." hereabouts ?' "And does that often happen ?

“ Yes, sir, in the next bay; there's a The words were but out, when, with a creek we can easily run into." loud report like a cannon-shot, the wind “ You are quite sure he could n't have reversed the sail

, snapping the strong sprit been blown out to sea ?in two, and bringing down the whole canvas 6. How could he, sir? There's only one clattering into the boat. With the aid of a way the wind could dhrive him. If he is n't batchet, the sailor struck off the broken in the Clough Bay, he's in glory.portion of the spar, and soon cleared the All the anxiety of that dreary night was wreck; while the boat, now reduced to a nothing to what Harcourt now suffered, in mere foresail

, labored heavily, sinking her his eagerness to round the Rooks' Point, prow in the sea at every bound. Her course, and look into the bay beyond it. Controltoo, was now altered, and she flew along ling it as he would, still would it break out parallel to the shore, the great cliffs looming in words of impatience, and even anger. through the darkness, and seeming as if close “Don't curse the boat, ye’r honor,” said to them.

Peter, respectfully, but calmly; "she's be" The boy ! - the boy!" cried Harcourt; haved well to us this night, or we'd not be "what has become of him? He never could here now.” have lived through that squall."

" But are we to beat about here forever?" "If the spar stood, there was an end of asked the other, angrily. us, too," said the sailor; "she'd have gone “ She's don' well, and we ought to be down by the stern, as sure as my name is thankful,” said the man; and his tone, Peter."

even more than his words, served reprove "It is all over by this time,” muttered the other's impatience. " I'll try and set Harcourt, Borrowfully,

the mainsail on her with the remains of "Pace to him now!" said the sailor, as he the sprit.”. crossed himself, and went over a prayer.

Harcourt watched him, as he labored The wind now raged fearfully, claps, like away to repair the damaged rigging; but the report of cannon, struck the frail boat at though he looked at him, his thoughts were intervals

, and laid her nearly heel upper- far away with poor Glencore upon his sickmost; while the mast bent like a whip, and bed, in sorrow and in suffering, and perhaps every rope creaked and strained to its last soon to hear that he was childless. From endurance

. The deafening noise, close at these he went on to other thoughts. What hand, told where the waves were beating on could have occurred to have driven the boy the rock-bound coast, or surging with the to such an act of desperation ? Harcourt deep growl of thunder through many a invented a hundred imaginary causes, to cavern. They rarely spoke, save when some reject them as rapidly again. The affection emergency called for a word. Each sat the boy bore to his father seemed the strongwrapped up in his own dark reveries, and est principle of his nature. There appeared unwilling to break them. Hours passed thus to be no event possible in which that feeling - long, dreary hours of darkness, that seemed would not sway and control him. As ho like years of suffering, so often in this interval thus ruminated, he was aroused by the suddid life hang in the balance.

den cry of the boatman. As morning began to break with a gray

" There's a boat, sir, dismasted, ahead' of ish blue light to the westward, the wind us, and drifting out to say.' slightly abated, blowing more steadily, too,

" I see her! - I see her!” cried Harand less in sudden gusts ; while the sea court; out with the oars, and let 's pull rolled in large round waves, unbroken for her." abore

, and showing no crest of foam. Heavily as the sea was rolling, they now Do you know where we are ?asked began to pull through the immense waves,

Harcourt turning his head at every instant "Yes

, sir; we're off the Rooks' Point, to watch the boat, which now was scarcely and if we hold on well , we'll be soon in half a mile ahead of them.

“She's empty!- there's no one in her!”


alacker water."

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »