« السابقةمتابعة »
Then landed De Leon, the sailor,
Unfurled his old banner, and sung; But he felt very wrinkled and withered,
All around was so fresh and so young. The palms, ever verdant, were blooming,
Their blossoms e'en margined the seas; O’er the streams of the forests, bright flowers
Hung deep from the branches of trees. “Praise the Lord !” sung De Leon, the sailor;
His heart was with rapture aflame;
By Florida given to fame.
More lovely than earth of a truth;
The beautiful fountain of youth!”
HE story of Ponce de Leon,
A voyager, withered and old, Who came to the sunny Antilles,
In quest of a country of gold. He was wafted past islands of
spices, As bright as the Emerald seas, Where all the forests seemed sing
ing, So thick were the birds on the
trees; The sea was as clear as the azure,
So deep and so pure was the sky
and bars; By night, on the full tides he drifted,
'Neath the low-hanging lamps of the stars. Near the glimmering gates of the sunset,
In the twilight empurpled and dim, The sailors uplifted their voices,
And sang to their Maker a hymn. “Thank the Lord!” said De Leon, the sailor,
At the close of the rounded refrain ; “Thank the Lord, the Almighty, who blesses
The ocean-swept banner of Spain !
The shining Cipango before;
On ocean, and island, and shore.
To the west, and the regions of gold!”
But wandered De Leon, the sailor,
In search of that fountain in vain; No waters were there to restore him
To freshness and beauty again. And his anchor he lifted, and murmured,
As the tears gathered fast in his eye, “I must leave this fair land of the flowers,
Go back o'er the ocean and die." Then back by the dreary Tortugas,
And back by the shady Azores, He was borne on the storm-emitten waters,
To the calm of his own native shores.
There came to De Leon, the sailor,
Some Indian sages, who told
Were sprinkled with islands of gold.
A fair land of grottoes and bowers, Is there; and a wonderful fountain
Upsprings from its gardens of flowers. That fountain gives life to the dying,
And youth to the aged restores ; They flourish in beauty eternal,
Who set but their foot on its shores !” Then answered De Leon, the sailor:
“I am withered, and wrinkled, and old; I would rather discover that fountain,
Than a country of diamonds and gold.;'
On his ship the old sailor lay dying
Away sailed De Leon, the sailor,
Away with a wonderful glee, Till the birds were more rare in the azure,
The dolphins more rare in the sea. Away from the shady Bahamas,
Over waters no sailor had seen, Till ain on his wondering vision
Rose clustering islands of green.
By the shores of a beautiful isle,
And his face lighted up with a smile.
He thought of the shady Azores, He thought of the dreamy Bahamas,
He thought of fair Florida's shores.
His wonderful travels of old,
Of the city of jasper and gold.
“Thank the Lord for the light of the truth, I now am approaching the fountain,
The beautiful Fountain of Youth."
The cabin was silent: at twilight
They heard the birds singing a psalm, And the wind of the ocean low sighing
Through groves of the orange and palm And just as the sunset was fading, Heaven burst on the mariner's
sight, And he knelt at the life-giving Fountain That springs in the Gardens of Light.
- New England Journal of Education.
N this enterprising age
Few on trifles do engage.
Still e'en trifles claim a thought,
LITTLE Hannah, five, speaks of a stammerer as
the man who had to say something before he could talk."
A man's great ambition is to be credited with some great feat; a woman's to be credited with small feet.
A GENTLEMAN at a musical party asked a friend, in a whisper, how he should stir the fire without interrupting the music. “Between the bars," replied the friend.
A TAILOR was startled the other day by the return of a bill which he had sent to an editor, with a notice that the “ manuscript was respectfully declined.”
SOME thoughtful person says—“It is unkind to ridicule those items in the papers about centenarians. It is no easy thing to be a centenarian; several have failed.”
“Can you steer the main-mast down the forecastle stairs ?" said a sea captain to a new hand. Yes, sir, I can, if you will stand below and coil it up.” The captain didn't catechise that man any more.
A WITTY doctor, who was one of the corps of physicians appointed to vaccinate the policemen, remarked, "What is the use of vaccinating these fellows? They never catch anything!”
We know a man so cross-eyed that he put his hand into another man's pocket and abstracted therefrom a watch. He wanted to learn the time. The judge told him it would be
Two darkies were vaunting their courage. “ I isn't feared o' nothin', I isn't.” · Den, Sam, I reckon you isn't feared to loan me a dollah." “No, Julius, I isn't feared to lend you a dollah, but I does hate to part with an ole frien' forebber.”
“BIDDY," said a lady to her servant, "I wish you would step over and see how old Mrs. Jones is this morning: few minutes Biddy returned with the information that Mrs. Jones was 72 years 7 months and 28 days old.
SAID the night watchman when, about dusk, he was invited to drink a cup of coffee: "No, thank you, coffee keeps me awake all night.” And then he saw his blunder, looked very embarrassed, and tried to explain it, but it was of no use.
This is how a pious French priest recently gave out an announcement of a procession to take place next day: “If it rains in the morning, the procession will take place in the afternoon; and if it rains in the afternoon, the procession will take place in the morning.'
INSTRUCTOR in Latin--- Miss B., of what was Ceres the goddess ? ” Miss B—“She was the goddess of marriage.” Instructor—“Oh, no; of agriculture.". Miss B. (looking perplexed) —"Why, I am sure my book says she was the goddess of husbandry.”
“I THREW this off in ten minutes," softly said the poet, placing a manuscript on the editorial table. The editor said that when it came to speed no long-haired poet should distance him ; 80 he threw it off in less than ten seconds-off the table into the waste-basket.
WHEN the ship City of Aberdeen was stranded at Porthleven, one paper headed its account, “Strangling of the City of Aberdeen." In the case of another shipwreck, the editor described the awful scene, and how the captain had been swallowed up by a surging wave. The account, however, made it appear that the captain had been swallowed up by a surgeon's wife."
A COUNTRYMAN saw, for the first time, a school-girl going through some of her gymnastic exercises for the amusement of the little ones at home. After gazing at her with looks of interest and commiseration for awhile, he asked a boy near by “if she had fits." "No," replied the lad, contemptuously, that's gymnastics."...“Oh, 'tis, eh?” said the verdant ; “how long has she had 'em?"
SOWING AND REAPING.
up each hour with what will last; Buy up the moments as they go ; The life above, when this is past,
Is the ripe fruit of life below.
Who sows the false shall reap the vain;
Fror, hollow words and deeds refrain. Sew love, and taste its fruitage pure;
Sow peace, and reap its harvest bright; sow sunbeams on the rock and moor, And find a harvest-home of light.
brushed past him, up into the garret, and there the mysterious A
sound disappeared. He hurried upstairs after him, but found nothing. His challenges were only answered by the echoes of the empty house. He was now more perplexed than ever.
Again he made a diligent search, but to no purpose. Our hero IN a certain town
was no coward, but the strange experience he had just passed in Ireland, there through almost staggered him, and he began to think that was, a few years there was something in superstition after all, notwithstandago, a villa resi: ing he was loath to give up such a matter without thorough dence, about which investigation. Next night he would stand outside and watch there was a great the approach of the visitant or visitants. So the third night deal of mystery. It came, and he secreted himself and awaited the ghosts, might have been a
and immediately after a distant clock had struck the house of entertain- hour of midnight, imagine his feelings when he heard ment, for no one
the same thump, and yet saw no one, the door as usual family stayed in it flew open, and up tramped the ghost with no silent tread, long; they had no
until lost in the garret. An immediate search proved useless. sooner come than Our friend walked about annoyed, puzzled, and actually they gave notice to quit, and off
frightened. they went, glad to go; but only to
Were there, after all, visitants from the unseen world be succeeded by others, who were doomed to trouble the living? He must give up this vexatious soon equally anxious to remove. It was a substantial, roomy build thus musing, he could see a shining light at some distance,
inquiry and all prospect of dwelling in that house. As he was ing, pleasantly situated on the out, and this diverted his attention, and at once suggested another skirts of the thriving town, and gave mode of inquiry. He directed his steps to where the light was, no token of being troubled; but and found it to be a smithy. In the course of the day he went such was the rumour, which soon into that smithy and made a variety of inquiries, and dismade it notorious, and so thoroughly covered that every night that week a man had been working was this believed, that no one would there, and would be engaged again that night. Anxious to live in it for love nor money. A respectable minister of a poor hastened that night to his vigil and took his position in the
put to the test the theory which he had crudely formed, he congregation in the town had often front room on the ground floor, and there in total darkness he noticed this empty house, and looked watched in the direction of the smithy. About half-past wistfully at it as a most desirable eleven he could see someone strike a light and evidently dwelling for his ever-increasing kindling a fire, which soon after blazed up brilliantly, and family: He saw that it was fast about midnight he saw the smith lift up his brawny arm and becoming. dilapidated, and would strike the anvil a heavy blow, and simultaneously-as he had soon be in ruins if it continued expected the house door flew open, each successive step
uninhabited. He wondered whether answering to the lighter strokes of the hammer upon the he could secure it for a residence, but his presumption was heated iron anvil. checked by a study of his limited means. However, he made dold enough to make inquiries, found out the owner, who was mystery, but how could that hammer have such an effect
With joy he saw that he had fathomed a part of the delighted to see him, and offered, if he would live in it, he from such a distance ? This he was not long in discovershonld have it rent free for a whole year, and afterwards only ing. A bricked drain passed under the door of the house a nominal rent would be required. The landlord honestly told and directly under the anvil at the smithy, so that when the him that the house was troubled by some ghostly visitant, and smith struck the anvil in the dead of the night, the vibration had entirely lost its character. The minister procured the underneath jerked the door, which, possessing only an old lock, keys, determined, if possible, to solve the mystery. He went home, told his wife that he would be away for a few nights, need not inform you that the poor minister immediately took
was soon opened. So there was the mystery fully revealed. I and without distressing her mind with the purpose of his absence, he went away, bent on spending
that night in the possession of the house, and he and his family lived in it most
comfortably on the stipulated terms for a great number of haunted house. About 11 p.m. he opened the door, fastened it after him, habitants of the town, who were never let into the secret.
years, to the astonishment of the landlord and all the in. and went in. He struck a light and carefully examined the house. The place was richly carpeted with dust, the grates were rusty, the doors creaked with a woeful sound, as if sad
TAKEN AT HIS WORD. at being disturbed out of their long repose, the spiders had hung the place with specimens of their handiwork, the mice [T is told of Archbishop Leighton, that a tremendous storm fied himself that the place was empty and secure, our hero going from Glasgow to Dumblane. began his vigil in the front room below.
He was seen at a great distance by two men of bad characHe waited there in the dark so long—as he supposed—that ter; they had not courage openly to rob him; but wishing he began to feel drowsy. He was, however, suddenly roused to bit upon some method of extorting money from him, one from his lethargy by a tremendous thump at the front door, of them said, “I will lie down by the way-side, as if I were which immediately flew open, and thump! thump! thump! dead; and you shall inform the archbiship that I was killed went the sound of feet upstairs. He flew to the door in some by the lightning, and beg money of him to bury me.". alarm, and found it open, but saw no one ; he struck a light When Dr. Leighton arrived at the spot, the wicked wretch and ventured with some trepidation upstairs, searched every told him the fabricated story: the archbishop condoled with room, every nook and corner, but found nothing ; went ont, the survivor, gave him money, and proceeded on his journey. but saw no trace of anyone or anything. In looking at his But when the man returned to his companion, he found him watch he noted it was nearly 1 a.m. He was somewhat dis really lifeless! Immediately he began to exclaim aloud, “Oh, concerted by this event, but not discouraged ; he continued sir, he is dead! Oh, sir, he is dead !” On which the archthere the whole night, but nothing further transpired. bishop, perceiving the fraud, left the man with this serious
The next night he entered the house determined to be more reflection:-“It is a dangerous thing to trifle with the cautious, so he went upstairs and occupied a back room. He judgments of God.” took with him a candle and a Greek Testament-for he was a devoted student—anxious that he should not be caught napping
CORRESPONDENCE. this time. The time passed slowly, and yet he was listening and watching, sometimes with beating heart, when lo ! soon L. M.-We presume you are only entitled to the wages menafter twelve, the same heavy thud was heard at the door. tioned in your indentures, reporting (note-taking) being Thud! thud! thud! was heard on the stairs. Summoning all chiefly done at night. his courage, he hastened to meet the approaching object-de. NATURALIST.—Your scientific queries will be answered (with manded in a loud voice that it would stop; but the unseen one nany similar ones) in “Our 'Ology Page," in good time paid no heed--tramped upstairs. Up! up! it went, even for next season's work.
AR away on the southern borders of the Holy recorded in the fourteenth chapter of the Book of F Land, and north of the rock-citadels of Petra, Genesis. lies the scene of the first recorded battle of We take our stand on the summit of a bill,
a little the world. A wild and desolate spot it is, to the northward of the modern Masada, and over
shut in by tall cliffs of naked limestone: a looking a pleasant valley now occupied by the Salt place in which the traveller, fresh from the olive Sea. It rises two thousand feet in height, and is slopes of Hebron and the fountains of En-gedi, bounded on either side by two magnificent gorges. might feel that he was utterly alone.
The descent is almost vertical, but the terrible look No pillar of stone marks the site of this primeval of the declivity is relieved by the crystal cascade that struggle, no field-flowers bloom above the dust of the gushes out from under a huge boulder on a narrow unknown slain, but across it, like an enchanted lake, shelf or terrace far beneath. You can hear the soft with its clear, sluggish waters glittering through the rush of the falling waters thirteen hundred feet hanging mist, spreads the long expanse of the grey below. In a shower of spray it leaps down the rock, Dead Sea. The rocks on the shore are white with hidden in a green thicket of rustling canes and the salt thrown up by the bitter waves, and the solanum bushes with blood-red flowers that quiver silent beach is strewn with boughs and tree-trunks above the life-giving stream. At the foot of the cliff
-fragments of river-side forests, torn off by the is a palm-grove, whose tufted fronds have just caught descending Jordan. The edge of the lake is covered the first rays of morning; and, close by, a field of with a soft saline ooze, in which even the lower camphire lies like a sheet of gold, scenting the whole forms of animal and vegetable life fail to exist. The valley with its fragrance. Down by the water's edge, very sunshine that streams down on the scene where the cascade joins the broad, swift Jordan renders it but the more desolate. It is Death in (there is no Salt Lake now to check its fow), a colNature, Death dreary, silent, and unadomed : a lection of dark goat-skin tents lie overturned and corner of the earth on which the curse of God seems dismantled, and the bodies of the slaughtered into st, and where the beauties of Creation are no habitants lie strewn on the grassy slopes. longer suffered to appear.
What spot is this? It is En-gedi, the beautiful Yet, strange to say, this was not always so. Long settlement of the rude Amorites. If you would learn ago when the world was young and the tent of a the cause of the assault, look yonder! Up the wealthy patriarch held the future of “ God's chosen mountain-pass come the authors of this terrible deed, people,” there was not a more fair and fertile spot in a band of wild Assyrian nomads, some mounted, all Palestine than this Vale of Siddim—the Valley others on foot, with bow and quiver slung behind of the Fields. Let us glance at it as it appeared them, and their long lances glittering in the sun. Up nearly 2,000 years before the Christian era, when it they come, fierce-visaged, dark-bearded men, with the was the scene of an event which has rendered its stains of conflict still upon them, and the dust on name famous, and which the sacred historian has their loose white robes. "Behind them, weeping and Great Victories of Bible Days.
wailing, a long train of captives are being half-led, And now they have reached the foot of the gorge. half-driven up the path. They are the wives and Quietly and still unseen, under the shade of the daughters of the slain, now become the property of friendly myrtles, the arrows are fitted to the bows. the victors. Pillage and booty of various kinds has A loud shout, in the harsh Chaldæan tongue, peals been packed hastily on the patient camels that form along the sounding cliff-walls : a cloud of arrows part of the cavalcade, and a bewildered flock of darkens the air : and, the next moment, with couched sheep and goats are being driven on at the point of spears, the Assyrians are in the enemy's midst. the spear. The summit of the pass is gained at length, and the whole party halt for a breathing. space, ere they move on towards the south.
Whence come these roving freebooters, and what has led them to the fair valleys of Hazezon-tamar ? *** Their home is far away beyond the Tigris, but, lured by the love of gain and conquest, Chedorlaomer, a stern Babylonian chief, with three of his princely neighbours, had gathered an armed force of picked men, and, sweeping down the eastern valley of the Jordan, had smitten tribe after tribe till they arrived before the rock towers of Petra. The hardy cliff-dwellers in vain withstood the attack, and the invaders marched northward, as we have seen already, to plunder the settlement at En-gedi.
But another and harder fight must be won ere they turn their steps homeward. In the vale of Siddim lie the rudely-built towns of Sodom and Gomorrah. There, too, dwells Shinab, the king of Admah, and Shemeber, king of Zeboiim, and, on the east side, nestles the little village of Zoar. Rebels
ia they all are against their lord and master Chedorlaomer, for, tired of their twelve years' servitude, they have thrown off the yoke.
Hearing of the approach of their rejected rulers, the revolted chiefs hold a hurried conference, and, resolving to hazard all in one great battle, have moved down the valley to meet the foe.
The rock-citadels of Petra. Meanwhile the Assyrian band has been journeying south, intending to cross the Jordan lower down The attack is sudden, and the onslaught fierce and and make their way homeward. On they come, desperate; but for a time, it is checked by an putting mile after mile behind them, till the foremost answering volley of shafts from the Canaanite archers, rider reaches the edge of the lofty cliffs that overhang and the short two-edged swords, wielded by brawny the vale of Siddim. Far below, by the side of the hands, beat back the invader. The green plain is blue lake that in these days receives the rapid waters strewn with the bodies of the fallen, and there is a of the river, are drawn up the armed forces of the red foam on the ripples of the lake. The groans of five kings.
wounded warriors mingle with the clash of weapons, Alive at once to the nature of the situation, the and the ground trembles under the feet of the dark eyes of the horseman have taken in the scene flying. at a glance, and, wheeling round, he dashes back And now the attacking force is withdrawing, to the cortége, and gives the alarm. In an instant and Chedorlaomer calls back his men from the all is stir and preparation ; the camels are tethered, struggle ; but it is only to prepare for a second and while the captives are bound together and a guard more desperate charge. Under cover of a flight of set over them; and the remainder of the troop, arrows the whole Assyrian force sweeps down in one throwing off every encumbrance, wind slowly down terrible onset. The war-steeds of Sodom are borne the steep pass.
back at the spear's point; the light brass-bound Then nothing is to be heard, save the crumble of shields of their riders are pierced and thrust down the loose stones beneath their feet or the hurried and with a wild shout of triumph, that echoes far word of command passed from lip to lip. Along the and wide up the stony gorge, the alien bowmen green slopes the red anemones glitter like threads of press forward to complete the work of death. fire, and the bare soil is rich with the mingled hues Resistance is useless ; and the five chiefs endeavour of wild tulip and daisy. The cliff swallows swing airily to save themselves by flight. But between them and from crag to crag above those dusky forms, and the the mountain refuge which they are making for, are hill-fox starts up from almost under their feet, and deep treacherous pits of bitumen, partially concealed goes bounding back into the fissured rock. And on by the nature of the ground, and disastrous to any the gnarled boughs of yonder terebinth the raven is who should chance to flounder into their slimy whetting his beak, for he knows that his turn will depths. Pressed hard by the victorious enemy, the come before the sun goes down.
kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fly across the plain,
and, heedless of the proximity of the perilous holes, * The ancient name of En-gedi.
sink into the yielding mire, and are lost. The rest,