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NEOPHYTUS, the monk, was a man between forty and fifty years of agehis great height rendered more strik ing by the straight black robe and high docap which he wore. The black crape veil, that also forms a part of the dress of a Greek priest, hung in heavy folds round a grave and stern countenance, whose deadly paleness contrasted strangely with his long dark hair and beard. His features wer were heavy and irregular, though the whole countenance was full of expression, and
was engaged in silently scrutinizing
for the head that is crushed beneath a tyrant's yoke!" bdesit som
Oh, then, let them burst the bonds asunder," exclaimed the young Riga, w with passionate eagerness, let them for ever destroy that most abhorred ni mbu yoke !"
"These are not times," answered the monk, in a clear, sonorous voice, which escaped from the immoveable lips he scarce seemed to unclóse, stamped with the impress of that in-when men should feel fatigue in domitable will and unbending steadi- the limbs, that t are yet bound by an 100s seek repose ness of purpose which forms the true oppressor's chain, elements of a powerful character; but what was most striking in his severe and rigid face was, the total absence of all evidence of those more natural and softer feelings, from which we would suppose no heart formed of mortal dust to be altogether exempt; those bitter tears that surely at some one period of life human weakness fails not to wring from human eyes, could never have fallen from his, so clear, so calm, so stern was their gaze-and it ca was impossible to think his firmly compressed lips had ever spoken to sister or to bride those gentle words of endearment, whose very utterance softens and subdues the spirit. Neophytus was a man who could suffer, even to agony, but who could not sorrow_ who could exult to madness, but not rejoice!
He responded with quiet dignity to the salutations of the old Prince, and when Erotà and the younger men had respectfully kissed his hand, he seated himself in silence. The customary forms of eastern politeness were next observed the "cheboukeir" (or pipe bearer) presented him with a long narghile, the Pearl herself offered him sweetmeats and a glass of clear water; but after the servants had retired, it was evident that a considerable constraint was felt by all parties-each
Young man-young man!" exclaimed Constantine, elin st a warning tone-and he shrunk back abashed. The monk took no notice of this remark; he looked down upon the lovely view that lay beneath the terrace, so still and smiling. did
"You have here, indeed, a fair and tranquil resting-place, Prince Constantine," he said; then added, while his eye rested with the utmost se rity on the two young men it is well for those who have now the leisure and the will to take their ease in soft and peaceful scenes like those, to wanton with their vacant hours, in moonlit gardens, and lay their nerveless limbs to rest beneath a smiling sky! it is well, I say, for them! Elsewhere there are tumults and alarms, and there are voices crying out for vengeance on an oppressed and degraded country, and men who glory to perish for the land they love!-there is a cause ! for which rivers of blood are shed! but not one tear over the dead who die for it! a cause that has even
nerved weak women, to look on rent to and smile! and the very beyield up their young lives without a si struggle. decor bitter words of the monk, with the taunt which they implied, stung the young men to the very soul. Anthymos started forward, forgetting all precaution, and exclaimed, with the blood rushing to his forehead"Who who! would linger in moonlit gardens, or steep then the hour
vile luxurious ease,
for which they pine shall have dawned at last! and the voice they pant to hear have uttered the blesse blessed 201 words arise and strike !'! gro" My son, my son, oh beware," said the aged Constantine. But again the monk made no reply to this eager be and hasty speech, he suddenly changed the subject by a seemingly frivolous eldremark" The jewels which orna9ment this pipe," he said, and he used the Albanian word "sipsi" instead of the more ordinary Romaic-" are Be very rich and beautiful."
At this speech, the eyes of the old prince flashed with eagerness, and he hanswered hurriedly
"But I have a pair of embroidered sandale, which will please you still 199 baymore.
And in like more manner, he made use of the Albanian term "Sarroukia." These words were the private signs by which the insurgent Greeks recognized in each other-the members the of the "Hetoria," or Sacred Alliance, that powerful and extensive secret society, which in fact gave birth to sthe revolution, and consequent liberty of Greece; and which included in elits five degrees or grades, not only all the distinguished men of that country, but also some of the most illustrious personages in Europe.
The aim and end of this vast and well-organized confederation was to effect the complete freedom of Greece, by means of the desperate and deteramined war of independence; and the members were initiated with the greatest solemnity. They took a dreadful oath, on their knees, at dead of night, that they would from that hour devote themselves altogether to the liberation of their country; all that they possessed became henceforward the property of
the association, to be yielded be yielded up when called for, and themselves were to be ready at all times, and in all places, to go forward to the death, on a moment's notice. They of course, implicit obedience the society, and, like the inquisitors of old, the strongest of natural affections, and the closest of human ties, were all to be forgotten at the command of the Hetoria; and with their own hands they were to put to death their nearest and dearest, if guilty of treachery.
Scarce had the significant words passed the lips of the old prince, which proved to Neophytus that all present were bis associates, when the monk started from his seat, his stern features glowing with an intense enthusiasm, that seemed to smoulder beneath his outward calm, like the deep fires of a
My brethren! my brethren,' exclaimed, stretching hing out his hands to
the three men, "true, faithful sons of our beloved Greece, the hour is come! it has come, indeed! the blow has been struck, the voice has sounded, which shall never more be hushed, till our land is purified from the very presence of our unbelieving tyrants! Everywhere have the swords been drawn, which shall not be sheathed again; the provinces are under arms, sending forth their hundreds and their thousands! and from the furthermost parts of Europe our countrymen have heard the cry of Greece for Liberty,' and all are hastening to the deadly struggle."
"Oh, glorious tidings !" said the two young men, whilst the aged prince clasped his hands over his heaving breast, and raised his eyes, with a look of the deepest exultation.
"My sons," continued Neophytus, with increasing vehemence, addressing Anthymos and his friend, "I come to call you! are you ready-are you ready to be offered up? have you set the seal on your young lives of sunshine and of joy, that to-day must terminate for ever; and are you ready to commence a new existence of conflict and of blood? to live, to suffer, to die for Greece? I come to call you forth this day, this very hour, now! it is no time to linger on the road; Ipsilanti has sent me out to gather to the ranks
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• The Generalissimo of the Hetoria
all that are true to the sacred cause; hundreds of our brethren were falling round him when I left; go up with me, my sons, and fill their vacant places!"
"We are ready," exclaimed the young men, the words bursting from their lips; "it is for this we have waited, and lived; we are ready, indeed, this very hour. Behold!" said Athymos, drawing out the small knife he wore concealed in his sleeve,
our preparations are made; why do we linger? we have no better arms here, but there we shall inherit those of the dead! Let us go!"
"And I, and I," murmured the old man, with quivering lips, "can I do nothing? Must I sit idly by, and see them all die for Greece? Can I not strike one blow?-so old, so weak. Alas! that ever those withered hands should have grown too feeble to fight for mine own land! oh, who shall rid me of the burden of these years!"
"Fear not, my prince," said Neophytus, with a melancholy smile; "so loyal and tried a servant of the sacred cause shall not be spared! To you has Ipsilanti assigned a post of far more deadly and certain danger, than that of his younger soldiers; for they go to confront the death they do not fear, but you must watch, and wait for it, and see it creeping stealthily and surely on you, perhaps in its most cruel shape. You have riches concealed ?"
"I have," exclaimed the old man, "and all, all for Greece! Ah, when Omer Bey taunted Constantine Cwith his poverty and meanness, he little thought how deep buried in the earth lay the mass of gold he had gathered, piece by piece, for his country !"
"We know it" said the monk, "and as the money could not be removed in safety, here you are to remain, and supply, according to the necessities of the troops, the emissaries who will be sent to you from time to time ;-but, noble prince, in these days we may no longer shrink weakly from the prospect of our fate, be it what it may! I seek not to conceal from you how terrible a charge is yours. You know, that although all the preparations for a determined revolt have been made long since, yet the Ottomon Porte have remained blindly, nay obstinately ignorant of the universal insurrection; now
"Alas! already," said Riga, "but a few days since, several Greeks were murdered on false pretences."
"And now there will be no pretence," said Neophytus; "their cry will be blood for blood;-they will repay tenfold upon the weak and aged, the women and children, every blow we have dealt amongst their soldiers in the strife! Some may escape from hence, but on all who remain, be their motive what it may, the fire and the sword will be let loose!"
"And welcome!" said the aged prince, with a grave, sweet smile.
"It is enough," replied the monk; and turning calmly and coldly, though he were not about to rend life's sweetest ties for the noble hearts around him, he called out loudly, "My sons, let us go."
There was a pause-and in the breasts of these loyal men, who till now had felt themselves only the children of Greece, the mighty power of natural affection awoke again with a deadly chill. Dark thoughts lay curdling round the father's heart, and the speaking eyes of Riga Galati had turned with an expression whose agony is not to be described, on the gentle Pearl, as she stood there like a breathing statue, paler than monumental marble. Erotà was this young man's promised bride, and he loved her with all that depth of tenderness which one so pure and lovely was calculated to inspire; but now, sad as this last hour must needs be for him, he gave no thought to the bitterness of parting, so full was his whole soul of terror at the prospect of the cruel and certain doom which awaited her if she remained in the Phanar. Bursting sud denly from Anthymos, whose arm was passed round his shoulder, he rushed forward, and almost flung himself at the feet of Constantine.
"But Erotà, Erotà," he exclaimed, in broken accents. "Oh my prince, she cannot, must not remain here! think what it would be to her, so gentle,
so timid, anguish, and torture, and death! Oh, let us take her hence-let us save her, our sweet and fragile flower! She was not made for these sufferings that death of violence; she must not stay here to suffer and to perish!"
"She must not, indeed," said the monk, even his stern heart moved by the aspect of that innocent young girl, so pale, so still, so beautiful in her great sorrow.
"Listen, my prince; hear me, I implore," continued Riga, "she may yet be saved. She is my own, my promised bride. Oh that you could see into my heart how little I think of my own happiness; but there is no other hope of escape for her; let her be mine, now this very hour; the pious priest will say the holy words that bind us to each other, then she can go forth with us to Jassy, where my mother dwells, in peace, in comfort, and in safety!we shall not tremble for her then! you, surrounded by these murderers, or we upon the battle-field, shall smile to think that she is safe. Oh! though I never see her again, my own sweet Erotà! let me know those dear eyes still behold the light of day!"
"He is right," said Anthymos, coming forward-" my father, he is right, indeed; there is no other plan of safety for her. I know how terrible an hour this is to you; I know how it will tear your heart to part with her; but for the sake of our precious Pearl, let it be as he has said."
5 Let it be as he has said," echoed the stern monk.
The old man's head had sunk upon his bosom, he raised it as they spoke, and flinging back his streaming white hair, he turned upon his daughter one long look of such unutterable misery, as no words could ever render; his lips worked convulsively, he stretched out his withered, trembling hands till they fell on the fair head of his child, as she bowed before him, drooping beneath all the weight of anguish, which terror for the future, and regret for the past, had accumulated into that one hour. Then the broken words burst from his lips, mournful, despairing, as the cry of a drowning man
"Oh! my child, my child !-sunbeam of my soul !-darling of my heart!-never to look upon her face again, never again to hear her tender
voice to wake, and sleep, and wake again, and never find her by my side! Who dares to bid me make this world so desolate and dark?-and yet-and yet-oh! surely I rave, and I am mad to say such things! Erotà!-to see her die -the saints in heaven forbid! Better this agony, this worst of pangs. I the old withered father, ripe for the grave, to see her die! No; they have spoken well-she must go forth, and live, and smile. I can but die the sooner. Go, go my child-go forth
Slowly the Pearl lifted up her dove. like eyes upon her father. He could not bear the intensity of mournful reproach that spoke in them through their large glittering tears. He let his head fall on her's till his white hair mingled with her golden curls, and sobbed convulsively.
"My father," she said, "what words are these? Alas! wherein have I offended you? Am I no more your Erotà, your child, who in sickness and in sorrow has tended you, in danger and exile has followed your steps, weeping for your griefs, or smiling for your joys-who in torture and in death will never leave your side!"
"My own beloved child! you are, you have been all to me; but now my hour is come, my day is spent, my night is closing in; I will but shed these last few drops of sluggish blood for Greece, and so expire; but you, sweet blossom of the spring, scarce has the morning of your long existence dawned; hope and joy are before you still, you must go forth to save your life-your young life of promise and of gladness!"
"My life," said Erotà, with the most melancholy smile, "and who, oh! my father, gave to me this life you would preserve? Yours was the gift, and weep not to take it back so soon; it was precious for the light and the joy of the sunny hours that are past, it would be for ever valueless, nay darker than the darkest and bloodiest grave, if your dying head sunk on another breast than mine."
The old man could not speak-he looked round imploringly.
"Oh! sister, be persuaded," said Anthymos, deeply agitated.
"Daughter," said the monk, "I commend your words; you are, indeed, a holy and a faithful child. Yet
bolisten to your father's voice; come forth with us and live-come forth from this Phanar, which soon will be Fone scene of horrors, to live in secuority and peace! No need the young bs tree, just blossoming into beauty, should perish with the aged sapless trunk. If he succumb, you would but share and not relieve his sufferings. To Child, you know not how easily an old man dies; his conflict will soon be over !"
Erotà disengaged herself from the clinging arms of the aged prince, and came forward calmly. They could spread of some lofty resolution on her pure pale forehead, and in the serene expression of her eyes. She sunk on her knees before the priest, and pressed her lips to the cross that was embroidered on his garment.
no" By this most holy sign," she said, tinsa voice clear and composed, "I take the solemn vow never to abandon my father in the miseries of this world, seven as I hope to share with him the joys of that which is to come; whilst he still lives to call me daughter,' I will be at hand to answer, I am here, my father. I was given to him in his old age to make his last hours brighter -that holy purpose of my life I must fulfil! His sorrow I will soothe, his danger I will share, his death, it maybe, I shall witness, and when my task is Hoover, I can perish on his grave."
"Erotà, Erotà! is it thus you love me?" exclaimed Riga, bursting into tears, which, dauntless even to folly on the battle-field, he was not ashamed to shed for her, when the irrevocable words were uttered.
"It is thus I love you," she answered, rising from her knees, and letting her hand fall into his; "it is thus I labour to be worthy of him to whom
my heart is given! Courage! thrice beloved what matter these few bitter hours of a miserable life; have we not eternity to spend together?"
No further remonstrance was attempted by those who would have thought it sacrilege to deter her from the fulfilment of her vow, and again the impassible monk gave the signal for departure. There could be no more delay; and, alas! how radiant and smiling in that last terrible moment, the memory of their joyous life so brightly spent together, rose up before those three young, tender beings about to part for ever. The prince, whose feeble frame was utterly exhausted by the conflicting emotions of the last hour, had sunk down upon his cushions in a sort of lethargy, and seemed unconscious of all that was passing round him. Neophytus signed to them to take advantage of this momentary oblivion, and spare him the pang of parting. The Pearl had fallen on her knees beside her father, she buried her face on his ample breast, and flung her arms around him, as though she hoped, by holding him close to her heart, to still its painful throb. bing for another. Riga cast one look on her kneeling form, convulsed with suppressed sobs, and rushed from the terrace. Anthymos bent down and gently kissed his father's hand. this token of a mute farewell, a faint smile wandered over the old man's lips, and then died away again; but often, how often! in after years that calm, unconscious smile haunted the dreams of the young soldier by night. Solemnly the monk made the sign of the cross in the air over that motionless group, and so they parted to meet no more on this side of the grave.
CHAPTER III.-THE ARMENIAN AND THE JEW. Ho estigung
THE day following the departure of