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not last long, for rumour soon told him, as it did belonged, as I have said, to this great Cornish family, as, of the approach of the Earl of Essex with the And, indeed, whatsoever family she belonged to, had army of the Parliament, and we rejoiced at the news it been royalty itself, might well have been glad to as much as he was downcast to hear it. Lord John own her one of them, so pure, so true, so kind, so

No. 20.-MAY, 1888.

gentle was she, so perfectly well-bred a lady. An could yet have said, although but little of what my atmosphere of refinement pervaded her household, feelings really were for her. I entreated her, if she emanating from her as imperceptibly as the perfume wished me back in safety, if she would still think from the rose ; and her son Richard inherited the kindly of me, to throw me down a token from her same nobleness of manner to everyone.

window, on receipt of my letter. Then I begged her Mr. Tonkin was by no means the equal of his wife to forgive my boldness, and so signed myselfin anything, but more proud than she of her family, " Ever, dear Miss Woollcombe, yours faithfully, and loved to speak loudly and boastingly of his

“ BENJAMIN HOLBECK," cousin, the Commissioner for Cornwall, and to harp I had little sleep that night; I was tossing about in upon his title.

the warm summer air, restless and excited. I had As the Lord General Essex drew near, so did been so long confined to Plymouth and its immediate Renegado Grenville prepare to retreat. He drew neighbourhood, that to march was in itself a thing off to Tavistock with his reduced forces, consisting of interest, and then I had such heavy forebodings, of only eight hundred, both horse and foot, and such intense longings for some word or sign from abandoned all his positions, very much to our surprise. Lucy before I left her, that I could not compose my

The welcome that the Lord General and his army self to rest. Very early, as soon as ever it was really received I cannot describe; a great shout of gladness morning, I was astir, and directly I thought Lucy and triumph went up from us all, townsfolk and would be awake, I carried my letter to the house in garrison, and the eagerness to see him on the part Looe Street. I immediately espied Bridget under of the women and children was unbounded.

the archway and beckoned to her. Fort Stamford, which we had lost at the beginning " What's the matter ?” she asked, stiffly; “ folks of the siege, was now easily retaken by us, to our is stirring early. I thought folks loved their bed too no small satisfaction, and thus the only solid fruit well.” of the besiegers, after a year and a halt's efforts, was I was too much in earnest to think very

much again plucked from their grasp. Here we took four about Bridget's reception of me. guns, and at Plympton eight, with cannon and arms “I am going away presently, Bridget,” I said, at Saltash. And now the Lord General determined “and I may never come back." to march on into Cornwall by Newbridge, and to Bridget pursed up her long, wide, flat mouth into take between two and three thousand of our garrison a curious shape, as if she would whistle, but appawith him. I received marching orders, unexpectedly rently she thought the better of it, and decided to myself, and had no time to take leave of my not to. friends.

“If you don't never come back, sir, we must do I strove all that was in my power to say good without 'ee," she said, drily. bye to Lucy Woollcombe, for no man could march I did not know whether to laugh at the obvious away as an officer in this time of war, without know absurdity she managed to put into this plain stateing full well that he might be marching to death. I ment of fact, or to resent the cool satisfaction which haunted the house that contained the one object dear- she seemed to feel. est to me on earth, at a late hour, after I knew my “Come, Bridget, don't be hard-hearted. My life destiny, hoping I might, by some good chance, is nothing to you, but it may be of a little value to behold her. We were to leave Plymouth very early some people. If this is the last favour I ask of you, next morning. But the house was still, not a light you won't be sorry to have granted it to me.” visible, no sound to be heard, save the mewing of a “ What if it haint the last ? ” she asked, eyeing melancholy cat on the doorstep, shut out from his me so comically out of the corners of her eyes, which, usual warm bed. How my heart rose in prayer for as it seemed to me, were the only round, fat-looking the gentle soul within, and for myself, that, by God's things about her, that I was obliged to smile. mercy, we might not have parted for ever.

“ Then I shall want you to do me other favours, not ashamed of the tears I shed that night. Lucy Mistress Bridget." had told me tears were not always cowardly, and I " That's it; it takes such as me to remember knew she was true. I returned to my quarters un- there's a future time as well as a present. What do willingly, and spent a long time over my first letter 'ee want, sir ?" to her, which I had determined to leave for her in the I gave her the note, and begged her to take it care of Bridget next morning.

to Miss Woollcombe, and at once. But just at that Bridget was a most prodigiously early riser; the moment I saw the blind of the window over the good soul seldom got up later than four o'clock in archway move, and, by the side, detected a face summer and six in winter, and expended her strength peeping out, a sweet face, shaded by soft tresses of in such gigantic cleaning operations as only such hair, now unconfined. Our eyes met, Lucy's cheeks indefatigable people can rightly estimate. I told grew crimson, the blind dropped, and she was hid Lucy in my letter of the unexpected command I had from my view. I was in an ecstasy of joy that my received to march with the rest of my regiment under plan had been so successful beyond my highest hopes: Essex, but I did not tell her in what direction, because I had seen her once again. of her father. I reminded her gratefully of the many Bridget, as well as I, heard her mistress's voice, kindnesses she and Mr. Woollcombe had accorded to and took the letter with her 'upstairs. I paused me, and thanked her and him for them. I got on so awhile, waiting for her answer. There were few

far pretty well, but when I reflected that this was; people in the street ; only a group of fishermen 1- perhaps; the last time I should ever convey my feel. passed me, as I lingered, with their nets on their Įings to her, I became confused, irresolute, and I shoulders, going towards their boats; a little lad or

hardly know what I wrote; more, perhaps, than I two, a child carrying a fat baby-I remember them

I was

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How I Fared at the Siege of Plymouth.

311

as in a sort of dream. The street was half in The answer he received was to the following shadow, half in sunshine, in the early summer morn- effect : ing; Lucy's home was bathed in the bright light, for “Noble Earl of Warwick : it faced the south. Bridget did not come back, and Whereas you have summoned me, in the name she had shut the heavy house door. But after a of the King and Parliament, to render unto your few minutes, the time necessary for the reading of lordship the house, Mount Edgecumbe, may it my letter, the blind was drawn aside, the window please your Honour, I am here entrusted to keep the partly opened, and something fell at my feet. I stooped house for my master, Colonel Edgecumbe, till his to pick it up : it was a bunch of roses, several on a return ; to whom, as I conceive, it doth justly belong. stem, pale pink roses—"cluster roses” Lucy called

“ Your humble servant, them when I asked her once; they grew in rich luxu

“ HENRY BOURNE. riance in the garden behind the house, and climbed “ Mount Edgecumbe, July 30th, 1644." over the walls. There was a paper hastily curled The Earl of Warwick did not succeed in forcing a around the stem, and tied with a piece of stocking surrender any better than we had done. But the worsted. I immediately unravelled the string, un- measure of our success in Cornwall during the month rolled the paper, and read the kind words, “ May the of August was far different to what we had supposed, Lord grant you journeying mercies ! Lucy Wooll- and everywhere we found the men of the West had combe.”

made up their minds to take the side of the King I looked up at the window again, and there she against his people. The Earl of Essex had to own sat, holding the blind aside, looking down at me; at last that this was the greatest blow the Parliaher person closely enveloped in a large black and ment had received. The King, with Prince Maurice, white plaid shawl, only her sweet face visible; a had followed us into the country. We were all bitterly tender, almost sad, smile on the dear lips, her eyes disappointed, yet determined, as far as in us lies, to soft with tears. I kissed the roses and the little make good our retreat to faithful Plymouth, if we scrap of paper in her sight, talked to her as best I could do no more. could with eyes and hand; she waved one fair hand My dear friend, Lieutenant Tonkin was conspicuous from out the shawl, nodded gravely to me as I was in action in many places, especially at the last, at Bocompelled to tear myself away, and thus we parted; connoc, where our noble Essex was hemmed in without -my Lucy!

chance of escape, as it at first appeared. This was the Our first halt was at Tavistock, where we assaulted same place, where earlier in the war, before Providence and took Sir Richard Grenville's house, Fitzford, called me to this Western part of England, an action with one hundred and fifty prisoners, and three had already occurred, in which Colonel Ruthven, a thousand pounds worth of pillage. Three days after- brave Scotchman, then commander of the Plymonth wards we forced our passage into Cornwall, at New. Garrison, was defeated by Sir Ralph Hopton. bridge, on the River Tamar, a place as romantically Our plight was serious, and some desperate movesituated as any it has been my fortune to behold. ment could alone save us. Now it was that Sir We lost at this place but forty men, the enemy four William Balfour, with two thousand three hundred hundred. The gallant action of our Plymouth horse of the horse, broke through the lines of the malignants, was much commended. Had Grenville been the and we reached Plymouth eventually, by way of great soldier he has been alleged to be we might Saltash. General Skippon with the foot, in which have fared differently, for the narrowness of the also was a contingent from Plymouth, surrendered, gorge, the sides of which are comparable to a preci. Lord Essex, with Lord Robartes, Sir John Merrick, pice, and the great depth of the river below, might and a few others, escaped from Fowey to Plymouth have proved fatal to many of us, had the malignants in a small vessel. Our return was å terrible condefended it bravely, and thereby, if they could not trast to our departure ; then, with hopes high and have prevented our passage, they might at least have determination strong, we believed that the hearts of made the place memorable to them and to us, as that the men of the Western peninsula would beat as truly of Thermopylæ to the Greeks.

as our own for religious laws and just government We had left some of the Parliamentary fleet at in the high places. We had found out our mistake. Plymouth with the intention to summon Mount And we could not doubt that the Royalists would Edgecumbe to surrender. This, as we afterwards follow up their successes promptly, and that Plymouth learned, was done in the following terms :

would suffer for its bravery. I was anxious all " Robert, Earl of Warwick, Lord High Admiral of the time I was absent to return once more to the England, Ireland, and Wales, and Captain General place, which, as certainly as Brier Grange, I felt to of His Majesty's seas and Navy Royal, to the Com. be my home. Here, at least, lived the one who could mander-in-Chief at Mount Edgecumbe ;

alone ever make “home” for me. Her party, her “I do hereby summon you, in the name of the King cendant in these parts, outside of Plymouth. Would

father's party, was now proved to be in the asand Parliament, forthwith to render to me Mount Edgecumbe, now in your keeping, for the use of his she exult in this? Would she rejoice that I was Majesty and the Parliament, with all things in it. beaten? I tried to believe she would not. Even the Else you may expect the rigour of war, I being uncertainty was a trouble to me. resolved otherwise to enforce your speedy obedience.

During our absence a quantity of supplies had You are to return me your answer by this bearer, possible had been made to resist the attack of the

been received, and every preparation that was my lieutenant.

Royalists, flushed with victory, from whom we had “ Aboard His Majesty's ship, The James, in Ply- no reason to expect other than a closer investment, mouth Sound, 30th July, 1644.”

if not a thorough defeat:

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