صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

A thousand lives were perishing in thine :
What were ten thousand to a fame like mine

"Ha! there's a deathless name

A spirit, that the smothering vault shall spurn,
And, like a steadfast planet, mount and burn;
And though its crown of flame

Consumed my brain to ashes as it won me,
By all the fiery stars! I'd pluck it on me.

"Ay, though it bid me rifle

My heart's last fount for its insatiate thirst;
Though every life-strung nerve be maddened first
Though it should bid me stifle

The yearning in my throat for my sweet child,
And taunt its mother till my brain went wild ;—

"All, I would do it all,

Sooner than die, like a dull worm, to rot;
Thrust foully in the earth to be forgot.

O heavens! but I appal

Your heart, old man! forgive-Ha! on your lives,
Let him not faint!-rack him till he revives !

"Vain, vain; give o'er! His eye

Glazes apace. He does not feel you now-
Stand back! I'll paint the death-dew on his brow.
Gods! if he do not die

But for one moment-one-till I eclipse
Conception with the scorn of those calm lips!

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'Shivering! Hark! he mutters

Brokenly now-that was a difficult breath-

Another? Wilt thou never come, oh Death?
Look! how his temple flutters!

Is his heart still? Aha! lift up his head!
He shudders-gasps-Jove help him-so-he's dead!"


O Rome! my country! city of the soul! The orphans of the heart must turn to theeLone mother of dead empires! and control,

In their shut breasts their petty misery.

What are your woes and sufferance? Come and see
The cypress, hear the owl, and plod your way
O'er steps of broken thrones and temples, ye!
Whose agonies are evils of a day:-

A world is at our feet as fragile as our clay.

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The Niobe of nations! there she stands,
Childless and crownless, in her voiceless woe;,
An empty urn within her withered hands,
Whose holy dust was scattered long ago; .
The Scipios' tomb contains no ashes now;
The very sepulchres lie tenantless

Of their heroic dwellers: dost thou flow,
Old Tiber! through a marble wilderness?

Rise, with thy yellow waves, and mantle her distress!

The Goth, the Christian, time, war, flood, and fire,
Have dealt upon the seven-hilled city's pride;
She saw her glories star by star expire,
And up the steep, barbarian monarchs ride,
Where the car climbed the Capitol: far and wide
Temple and tower went down, nor left a site :
Chaos of ruins! who shall trace the void,
O'er the dim fragments cast a lunar light,

And say, "here was, or is," where all is doubly night?

The double night of ages, and of her,

Night's daughter, Ignorance, hath wrapt and wrap
All round us: we but feel our way to err:
The Ocean hath his chart, the stars their map,
And Knowledge spreads them on her ample lap;
But Rome is as the desert, where we steer
Stumbling o'er recollections; now we clap
Our hands and cry "Eureka! it is clear"-
When but some false mirage of ruin rises near.

Alas! the lofty city! and alas!

The trebly hundred triumphs! and the day
When Brutus made the dagger's edge surpass
The conqueror's sword in bearing fame away!
Alas! for Tully's voice, and Virgil's lay,
And Livy's pictured page! but these shall be
Her resurrection; all beside-decay.

Alas! for earth; for never shall we see

That brightness in her eye she bore when Rome was free!


THE Queen arrived in the hall of death. Pale, but unflinching, she contemplated the dismal preparations. There lay the block and the axe. There stood the executioner and his assistant. All were clothed in mourning. On the floor was scattered the sawdust which was to soak her blood, and in a dark corner lay the bier which was to be her last prison. It was

nine o'clock when the Queen appeared in the funeral hall. Fletcher, Dean of Peterborough, and certain privileged persons, to the number of more than two hundred, were assembled. The hall was hung with black cloth; the scaffold, which was elevated about two feet and a half above the ground, was covered with black frieze of Lancaster; the arm-chair in which Mary was to sit, the footstool on which she was to kneel, the block on which her head was to be laid, were covered with black velvet.

The Queen was clothed in mourning like the hall and as the ensigns of punishment. Her black velvet robe, with its high collar and hanging sleeves, was bordered with ermine. Her mantle, lined with marten sable, was of satin, with pearl buttons, and a long train. A chain of sweet-smelling beads, to which was attached a scapulary, and beneath that a golden cross, fell upon her bosom. Two rosaries were suspended to her girdle, and a long veil of white lace, which in some measure softened this costume of a widow and of a condemned criminal was thrown around her.

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Arrived on the scaffold, Mary seated herself in the chair provided for her, with her face toward the spectators. The Dean of Peterborough, in ecclesiastical costume, sat on the right of the Queen, with a black velvet footstool before him. The Earls of Kent and Shrewsbury were seated like him on the right, but upon larger chairs. On the other side of the Queen stood the Sheriff Andrews, with white wand. In front of Mary were seen the executioner and his assistant, distinguishable by their vestments of black velvet, with red crape round the left arm. Behind the Queen's chair, ranged by the wall, wept her attendants and maidens. In the body of the hall, the nobles and citizens from the neighboring counties were guarded by the musketeers of Sir Amyas Paulet and Sir Drew Drury. Beyond the balustrade was the bar of the tribunal. The sentence was read; the Queen protested against it in the name of royalty and of innocence, but accepted death for the sake of the faith. She then knelt before the block, and the executioner proceeded to remove her veil. She repelled him by a gesture, and turning toward the Earls with a blush on her forehead, “I am not accustomed," she said, "to be undressed before so numerous a company, and by the hands of such grooms of the chamber." She then called Jane Kennedy and Elizabeth Curle, who took off her mantle, her veil, her chains, cross and scapulary. On

their touching her robe, the Queen told them to unloose the corsage, and fold down the ermine collar, so as to leave her neck bare for the axe. Her maidens weepingly yielded her these last services. Melvil and the three other attendants wept and lamented, and Mary placed her finger on her lips to signify that they should be silent. She then arranged the handkerchief embroidered with thistles of gold, with which her eyes had been covered by Jane Kennedy. Thrice she kissed the crucifix, each time repeating, "Lord, into thy hands I commend my spirit." She knelt anew, and leant her head on that block which was already scored with deep marks; and in this solemn attitude she again recited some verses from the Psalms. The executioner interrupted her at the third verse by a blow of the axe, but its trembling stroke only grazed her neck; she groaned slightly, and the second blow separated the head from the body.


When first, in ancient time, from Jubal's tongue,

The tuneful anthem filled the morning air,

To sacred hymnings and Elysian song

His music-breathing shell the minstrel woke.
Devotion breathed aloud from every chord ;-
The voice of praise was heard in every tone,
And prayer, and thanks to Him, the Eternal One,--
To Him, that, with bright inspiration, touched
The high and gifted lyre of heavenly song,
And warmed the soul with new vitality,
A stirring energy through nature breathed;
The voice of adoration from her broke,
Swelling aloud in every breeze, and heard
Long in the sullen waterfall,-what time
Soft Spring or hoary Autumn threw on earth
Its bloom or blighting,-when the Summer smiled,
Or Winter o'er the year's sepulchre mourned.
The Deity was there!-a nameless spirit
Moved in the hearts of men to do him homage;
And when the Morning smiled, or Evening, pale,
Hung weeping o'er the melancholy urn,
They came beneath the broad o'erarching trees,
And in their tremulous shadow worshipped oft,
Where the pale vine hung round their simple altars,
And gray moss mantling hung. Above was heard
The melody of winds, breathed out as the green trees
Bowed to their quivering touch in living beauty,




And birds sang forth their cheerful hymns. Below
The bright and widely wandering rivulet

Struggled and gushed amongst the tangled roots,
That choked its reedy fountain-and dark rocks,
Worn smooth by the constant current. Even there
The listless wave, that stole, with mellow voice,
Where reeds grew rank upon the rushy brink,
And to the wandering wind the green sedge bent,
Sang a sweet song of fixed tranquillity.

Men felt the heavenly influence; and it stole
Like balm into their hearts, till all was peace;

And even the air they breathed,-the light they saw,-
Became religion;-for the ethereal spirit,

That to soft music wakes the chords of feeling,

And mellows everything to beauty, moved

With cheering energy within their breasts,
And made all holy there-for all was love.
The morning stars, that sweetly sang together-
The moon, that hung at night in the mid-sky—
Dayspring-and eventide-and all the fair
And beautiful forms of nature, had a voice
Of eloquent worship. Ocean, with its tide,
Swelling and deep, where low the infant storm
Hung on his dun, dark cloud, and heavily beat
The pulses of the sea, sent forth a voice
Of awful adoration to the Spirit,

That, wrapped in darkness, moved upon its face.
And when the bow of evening arched the east,
Or, in the moonlight pale, the gentle wave
Kissed, with a sweet embrace, the sea-worn beach,
And the wild song of winds came o'er the waters,
The mingled melody of wind and wave

Touched like a heavenly anthem on the ear;

For it arose a tuneful hymn of worship.

And have our hearts grown cold? Are there on earth

No pure reflections caught from heavenly love?

Have our mute lips no hymn-our souls no song?

Let him, that, in the summer-day of youth,

Keeps pure the holy fount of youthful feeling,
And him, that, in the nightfall of his years,
Lies down in his last sleep, and shuts in peace
His weary eyes on life's short wayfaring,
Praise Him that rules the destiny of man.


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