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tween the bandit and the monarch. They result in the flight of Hernani; and Dona Sol, believing him lost to her forever, consents in despair to marry the old noble. On the eve of their wedding a wandering pilgrim asks hospitality at the gate of the castle of Ruy Gomez. Hernani, in disguise, is admitted, questioned by the Duke, and informed that Dona Sol is to be his Duchess. At this announcement, he turns round and cries in a loud voice:

“Qui veut gagner ici mille carolus d'or ?", proclaiming himself to the domestics as the robber Ilernani, on whose head a vast price has been set. De Silva, astonished, bids him beware, for he cannot answer for his servants; Dona Sol, in a low voice, entreats him to be silent; but the bandit calls repeatedly on them to seize and bind him and gain the reward. To the Duke he says:

"My bride, too, waits for me. She is less fair
Than yours, my lord; but not less faithful she;

'Tis death !" Don Ruy Gomez determines to save his guest's life, and goes out to arm his household, and close the gate. During his absence, in a brief, impassioned dialogue, Hernani learns that Dona Sol is still faithful, and resolved to die rather than wrong her love to him. She shows him a dagger at the bottom of a casket filled with bridal jewels. In the midst of their tears and embraces, the Duke returns; the lovers acknowledge their mutual and long cherished affection. He is filled with jealousy and resentment; at the same moment trumpets sound without, and the King demands admittance. The Duke, who cannot sacrifice bis guest, conceals Hernani in a hiding-place behind his portrait; and the King enters with armed followers. They have traced the outlaw to the palace, and know that he is concealed within it; but neither commands nor threats can compel the old Castilian to betray to certain death one who has claimed his hospitality, The Duke, with lofty pride, points to the portraits on the wall, of a long line of ancestors, each renowned for some deed of valor. Then he passes to his own, and while the king furiously demands his prisoner, says with dignity :

“This portrait-it is mine. Thanks-royal sir ;
Of this—this picture, you would have men say,
"The last great son of that illustrious line,
A traitor was-he sold his guest to death."

The King, baffled in his vengeance, seizes Dona Sol, and carries her off as a hostage. The old Duke, left alone, in the anguish of this cruel bereavement, releases Hernani, informs him of what has taken place, and challenges him to mortal combat. The bandit craves life and liberty only long enough to accomplish the rescue of the lady. When she is restored, he pledges himself to surrender his life, at any time or place designated, the signal being the sound of a horn, which he gives to his rival. The fourth act is occupied by a conspiracy against the King of Spain, in which the Duke de Silva and Hernani take part. The meeting is held in a vault of Aix-la-Chapelle; the conspirators draw lots to see who shall strike the fatal blow, and the lot falls on Hernani. Here occurs a most admirable and striking dramatic situation. The election for the Emperor of Germany is at that time taking place; the choice is to be announced by the firing of cannon; by one report if the Duke of Saxony is elected, by two, if the King of France,-if the King of Spain, by three. Don Carlos is concealed within the tomb of Charlemagne. He is aware of the conspiracy, and has his armed force, commanded by the Duke d’Alcala, ready at his signal, to seize upon the traitors, but every thought is absorbed in keen suspense. The conspirators solemnly consecrate Hernani to the work of vengeance, and swear the death of Carlos; at the moment they elevate their swords, a distant report of cannon is heard. The door of the tomb opens a little, and Don Carlos, pale and breathless, appears upon

the threshold. A second report is heard; a third ; and the monarch, suddenly throwing open the door, exclaims aloud:

“Messieurs, allez plus loin ! l'EMPEREUR vous entend !" The conspirators instantly extinguish their torches; but a blow of the iron key on the bronze door of the tomb, fills the vault with armed men. The traitors are disarmed and separated; the Spanish nobles being removed from the commoners, whom the Emperor scorns to punish. Hernani is left

among these last, but suddenly announces his real name and rank, as John of Arragon and Duc de Ségorbe, etc., the proscribed son of a father put to death by the King. He claims the right, as a grandee of Spain, to remain covered in the presence, and to endure imperial punishment. At the entreaty of Dona Sol, the Emperor pardons him and restores his titles, bestowing the lady upon him as his bride. The 11

VOL. VI.---NO, 11.

wedded lovers, on their bridal evening quit the scene of gaiety for a walk in the palace gardens; and it is here, when at the summit of all his wishes, in the possession of all that could make life precious, that the bridegroom receives the fatal summons. The Duke de Silva, masked, appears on the scene, reminds the victim of his oath, and presents him with a cup of poison, of which the bride also drinks. Both die a lingering death; and Silva, overtaken by a too late remorse, stabs himself.

One of the scenes in this piece containing much poetic beauty, is that between Silva and Dona Sol at the commencement of the third act, where he laments the disparity of their years. Much will undoubtedly be lost in a close translation, but we shall venture upon a few verses :

“Silva. Alas, one old like me, who loves like me,
Cannot be master of himself. Are men
Cruel, and jealous ? Wherefore? They are old.
They dread in others beauty, grace and youth,
Jealous of others-of themselves ashamed.
Shame! that this crippled love, that fills our hearts
With such wild fire, in making young the soul,
Forgets the body!-Ah! when passes by
Some youthful shepherd, as we both go forth,
He in his song-I in my dreams enrapt,-
He in his field-I in my avenues
With shadow dark-have I not murmured oft,
O crumbling towers, and ducal turrets old,
And fields and forests, and the flocks that feed
Upon my hills-fain would I give you all-
Would give mine ancient name-mine ancient right,
And all my ruins-and the ancestors
I soon must join-for his new cottage roof,
And for his youthful brow! His locks are black,
His eye is bright like thine. Him thou regardest,
And call'st him young, and think'st that I am old !
I know it. Yet I bear the name of Silva;
That now is not enough. See-how I love thee!
All—to be young and beauteous like thyself!
But wherefore dream I thus? I-young and beauteous !
Who haste so far before thee to the tomb!

Dona Sol. Who knows?

Silva. Yet these light cavaliers, believe me,
Have no more love than wastes itself in words.
One of these doth a maiden love and trust;
She dies-he laughs. All these young birds, with wings
Lively and gorgeous, and melodious voice,
Do with their plumage moult their love. The old,

Whose hues are faded, and whose song is mute,
Have wings more faithful, and, less beautiful,
Are better. We love well. Do our steps halt?
Are our eyes lustreless? or are our brows
Wrinkled? There are no wrinkles in the heart.
Ah! when an old man loves, deal gently with him!
The heart is always young, can always bleed.
I love thee-as a husband as a father-
And many other ways; as one doth love
The dawn, the flowers, the blue and smiling heaven.
To see thee all my days—to mark thy step
Of grace—thy pure brow, and thine eyes' sweet light,-
I have within my soul an endless feast.

Dona Sol. Ah me!
Silva. , Then, too, the world esteems it good,
When man departs, failing by slow decay,
And sinks into the marble of the tomb,
That woman, pure in angel innocence,
Should watch o'er him, and shelter him, and deign
To endure the useless old man, fit for nought
But death. It is a work that merits praise,
This final task of a devoted heart,
That soothes the dying-to the last sad hour,
And without love, perhaps, retains love's seeming.
This angel thou, all woman in thy heart,
Shalt be to me! brightening the old man's soul
With happiness; shalt half the burthen bear
Of his declining years; a duteous daughter

In thy respect-a sister in thy pity." There is a touching pathos in the last scene, when the hero is alone with his bride, and when, amid the fateful dreariness that hangs over him, he calls to mind the rich joys in his possession, like a miser counting over hoards from which he is presently to part. He entreats that she will not call him Hernani, a naine fraught with so many unhappy recollections:

"I know that in a dream, in other days,
Lived one Hernani; one whose eye had all
The falchion's lightning ;-z'twas a man of night
And of the mountains; one proscribed ; on whom
The dire word “vengeance" every where was written ;
A wretch that ever bore with him a curse;
I know not this Hernani. I delight
In sports--the feast. I am a Spanish noble,
Don John of Arragon; thy husband, lady ;
I am happy!

Dona Sow I am happy!
HERNANI.

What to me

The

rags which, entering, at the door I flung?
I come in sorrow to my palace back,
And lo! an angel greets me on the threshold !
I pass within; I raise the broken columns;
Re-light the hearths; the casements open wide;
Pluck

up the grass grown in the paved court;
'Tis nought but joy-enchantment, love! Restored
Are all my towers, my castles, vassals all-
My plume-my seat among Castilia's council;
Then comes my Dona Sol, with blushing cheek ;-
O let us thus remain ! the rest is past!
I have seen nothing-nothing said nor done;
I recommence-I blot out all-forget-
Let it be wisdom, or delirium,-
Thou art my good; I have thee-I adore thee !"

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“Dona Sol. Let us look out upon the lovely night,
My Duke—but for a moment: only time
To breathe and see! Lo-all the lights have vanished;
Hushed is the festal music. Here is nought
But night and us. O perfect happiness !
Is it not so? O'er us, while all are sleeping,
With gentle, loving eye doth nature watch.
No cloud in heaven; all is repose, like ours !
Come, breathe with me the air embalmed in roses.
But see-more lights; more sounds;—now all is still ;
The moon has risen above the horison's edge
While thou wast speaking; and her trembling light
Steals with thy voice into my inmost heart;
How calm I feel-how joyous! O my love,
I could this moment die!

HERNANI. Ah! who would not
Forget all wo, while list'ning to that voice?
'Tis a celestial melody,
Dona Sol.

This silence-
Methinks it is too dark, this calm too deep:
Tell me, would'st thou not fain discern a star

yon far depth ? or hear a voice of night,
Tender, delicious, rising suddenly
In placid song ?

HERNANI. Capricious ! 'twas but now
We left the music and the light!
Dona Sol.

The dance!
But a bird, warbling on the silent plain;
A nightingale, hid in the leaves and moss,
Or distant flute! For music's gentle power
Attunes the soul to harmony, and like
A seraph strain, awakes a thousand voices

In

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