« السابقةمتابعة »
ed by a party of armed knights, com
“With crimson drops his grey hairs drippid, manding the prisoners to be immedi
For they murdered the good old man! ately released. Among the number of
The knights they danced, the ladies tripp'd,
As they murdered the poor old man! miserable prisons which the monarch
Then sadly sing, heigh ho! sweetheart ! visited in person, was the one into which They've murdered the poor old man." Maddalena had been thrown the evening “ A sad song for so lovely à songbefore. Accompanied by two knights stress !” said one of the attendants to of his retinue, he entered the cell where the monarch. she sat, or rather lay, on the stone “ Some love-go-mad girl," said the bench which was formed out of the body other, some Florentof the wall. The lower part of her gar- 1 °""* Hush !" interrupted the king, this ment was soaked in blood, her face was is no subject for ribald mirth." as pale as ashes, and her eyes being “ Mirth!" said the broken-spirited closed, it seemed as if she was in sound girl, casting her body at the same time untroubled sleep.
into a sort of capricious bend, and smil“ A pretty chaffinch this,” whispered ing; “ mirth, my love-a-lady-aye, one of his attendants in the ear of the there shall be mirth, and laughter, and king ;“ is't not a shame to see so pret- smiles, when this poor
heart shall have ty a bird in so rascally a cage” broken utterly. We shall sing, and be
“By my knighthood, 'tis," replied happy, and free from care, when all of the monarch in an equally low tone of us meet again, Jacopo, Borgiano, and voice.
1. Nay, look not so dull—your bride “ Methinks these white lips,” replied is not dead. Hark! there she sings, the other, “would grow redder beneath light o' heart-she is beckoning you. a kiss shall I taste them out of courte Go!" ty to your majesty ?”
Less, probably, than those of any “ Out upon thee for a recreant other man of his day, had Charles's knight !--can I not taste them, think. feelings been exposed to the appeals of ye, myself ?"
human misery. The pitiable condition As he spoke, the monarch leaning of this wretched girl roused his deepest forward imprinted a kiss on Maddale commiseration; and “ albeit unused to na's cheek. She started up, and look the melting mood," he turned away ed wildly round her-her large blue from the melancholy spectacle, and faireyes were dim, but even then not with ly wept. out expression.
Nay, weep not for me,” she said Ha! there's blood
thee!”' the in a more connected tone than she had poor girl exclaimed ; “see-there, you hitherto used; “ all, all are gone who have murdered Jacopo-go wash thy- loved me, or whom I loved--and I self—thou hast too gay a look!" must weep when I would often sing."
The monarch spoke some words of She spoke in such a note of settled comfort to her, taking her at the same sorrow, and such a look of placid comtime by the hand.
posure still seemed to float over her de “ Let me see thee,” said Maddalena, stitution, that the monarch could not in a hollow disconnected voice, and command his feelings enough to speak. looking closely into his face. l'faith, a While he stood thus mute and pitying, sprightly executioner to kill an old man his eyes intently fixed on the still beauand then his daughter. There's an old tiful face and form of the unfortunate song--but I've forgot it now: I used to maniac, Jacopo rushed into the apartsing it long ago, and Borgiano liked it ment. He ran to his daughter, but she -no, no, I don't mean Borgiano-Ja- started wildly back from his embrace. copo liked it; but-they're all dead! “Do you not know your father?” all dead!
said the old man; “I am your father
El cong the retirement to which she was
-speak to me Maddalena !"-" You ! along, they were met at the prison-door you cannot be my father,” exclaimed by Borgiano, who having been freed
6 his hair was as white as along with the other Florentines, took snow, and yours is red with blood ! the earliest opportunity of enquiring look how the blood drips from it-my after the fate of Maddalena. old father's blood and Borgiano's." We shall not attempt to describe My child ! my child !” the old man their meeting.
Even he was unrecogcried in an agony of heart.
nized. All may imagine, though none “ This is indeed too much for him can adequately describe the utter loneto bear !" said the monarch, support- liness of heart, the agony and the deing at the same time Jacopo, whose in- spair which fell upon Borgiano, as he ward feeling had completely overpower saw his fondest hopes blighted ; and ed his strength. Maddalena came up when he beheld the face upon which to him as he lay fainting in the arms of in happier hours he had delighted to
gaze, now causelessly brightening into “ Sad heart, he has lost his father a smile, and now clouded with a tear, too; perhaps they have murdered his giving him the maddening assurance lady-love, as they did my Borgiano. that her mind was gone for ever. We shall weep together over our misfortunes; aye, and sing to ease our conducted, her frenzy gradually subsidhearts.”
ed from its first turbulence, and at times By the order of the monarch, the still she had even a dim recollection of the insensible Jacopo was borne out of the miseries which had befallen her. But apartment. From this state of lethargy these intervals were always brief, and he never totally recovered, lingering on she again, after a few minutes' apparent in the same miserable condition for se coherence, relapsed into the dull somveral days till at length he expired. bre melancholy, which ever marks the Once only, immediately before his victims of her distemper. Borgiano, death, when his soul, as it were, found though he strove, when she was gay, to a resting place between light and dark assume in her presence a gaiety which ness, he recovered for a moment to a his heart knew not, was in secret torsense of his afflictions. In this brief mented with'a thousand passions. Pity, period, he had called frequently on the and love, and sorrow at times melted name of his daughter, and accused Lan. his very heart within him; at others, franchi as the murderer of himself and a sort of undirected rage swept away her.
every softer feeling: till at length his Charles himself assisted in conveying whole soul settled in a burning and Maddalena from her dungeon; and, wreckless desire of vengeance, and Lansave that her cheek was pale, and her franchi was its object. He had been eye was at one time moveless, and at present when Jacopo had uttered his another rolled wildly, she was still as last words. They had sunk deep into beautiful as ever. A weeping fit, which his heart at the time, and weighed heahad succeeded in the capriciousness of vily on his recollection now. Till at her mind's disorder, the wilder ebulli- last he waited only for a fitting opportions of the moment before, had tamed tunity to hurl destruction on the head of her look into that state of meaningless a wretch whom the lips of a dying man quiescence, the most distressful condi- had cursed. tion in which any one can witness a
As he walked one evening moody fellow creature, especially as it was in and melancholy along a quiet and rethe present instance, in the case of a tired quarter of the Lang' darno, he
met with the object of his hate ; swords As they were slowly conducting her were mutually drawn; and however
beautiful young woman.
Lanfranchi might have the advantage of unsettled thought. She wandered on his adversary in skill, Borgiano pressed through the people, an object of pity upon him so furiously, that he rushed to some, of derision to others. She within his guard, and stabbed him to came, whether by instinct or chance, to the heart. The weapon broke as the the very spot where the whole circumdying man staggered to the ground; stance of death was going on. Already and sheathing the remainder of his had Borgiano's slow and terrible death sword, the Florentine retired hastily been begun. He had endured the agofrom the spot. A crowd was speedily ga nies of their most refined torture withthered to the scene.
At first the name out gratifying their cruelty by uttering a of Lanfranchi was on the lips of every single groan; and even the executionone ; but when Florence was decypher- ers, in spite of their hatred to his race, ed in the faint light on the fragment of began almost to pity him, when they the weapon,
which some one had ex beheld one so young surrendering his tracted, still reeking and warm with life without a murmur. blood, the sorrow of the people burst Maddalena saw and recognised Borforth into tumultuous rage. “ Some giano as his limbs were writhing on the accursed Florentine !" passed from man wheel. She rushed into the middle of to man. .-" Down with the Florentine the crowd-most of whom made way curs !" was next their cry; and when for her, as if unconsciously; others she their minds were more settled, and they tore aside, till she stood on the very knew their own object, a search was spot where Borgiano was expiring on commenced in the house of every Flo the rack ; his eyes were then almost rentine family within the city. Bor- closed for ever-another turn of the giano, with that infatuation which wheel, and life was fled. Had Maddaseems ever to haunt men when engaged lena really recognised in him the comin the most desperate enterprises, had panion of her moonlight wandering, the carried home with him the handle of gentle wooer, whom even in her madthe blade. It was stained with blood ness her soul had ceaselessly clung to? -the fragment corresponded with it -For a while she stood motionless, as exactly. These were damning proofs if gazing on the terrific sight before of guilt to the minds of the outrageous her, then fell to the ground stiff and populace, to whom even more superfi- moveless. Her heart had leapt for ever cial evidence would have sufficed to from its seat; and there she lay a cold convict any Florentine in their present and lifeless corpse, within a foot or two ebullition of fury. They hurried him of Borgiano's mangled remains. before judges who were not less preju They were buried in the same grave diced against him than his accusers ; by the kindness, or it may have been, and as in those days proceedings against by the derision of the Pisans. It was a criminal were brief in proportion as immediately under the hanging tower : they were unjust ;-his trial was con and upon it some friend had placed a cluded ere it was well begun. Death
Death slab of polished marble, upon which by the wheel was the sentence. the words “ Borgiano and Maddalena"
Maddalena, even in her lowliness and were engraved. At the beginning of retirement, could distinguish the nanie the last century it was still to be seen, of Borgiano uttered in curses from Pi- though the ground had then gradually san tongues from every corner of the risen around it, and it was in some decity. Roused by this into a state of ex gree bid beneath a profusion of luxuricitement, restless, yet without an object, ant wild flowers. Now it is completeshe escaped into the street ; her dress ly lost to the sight, and no record rein careless disarray, her hair untied, mains to tell of their ill-fated love. and her eye fixed in the wildness of
The following tale is extracted from that admirable Collection of desultory papers “ The
Sketch Book," by Geoffry Crayon-and appears to have been suggested to the author by a little German superstition concerning the Emperor Frederick der Rothbart, and the Kyffhausen Mountain, which has been already incorporated in our Volume (Vide Peter Klaus, page 31), where we have observed that the whole of the Legends on this subject appear to have their origin from that of the “ Seven Sleepers ;"--only
disfigured by the lapse of ages and by the introduction of other superstitions. Mr. Knickerbocker (among whose papers the tale of Rip Van Winkle was found) appears,
however, to disclaim the idea of his having attempted a second hand version-and the subjoined note which he appended to the tale shews that it is an absolute fact narrated with his usual fidelity and ability.
“ The story of Rip Van Winkle may seem incredible to many, but nevertheless I give it
my full belief, for I know the vicinity of our old Dutch settlements to have been very subject to marvellous events and appearances. Indeed, I have heard many stranger stories than this, in the villages along the Hudson; all of which were too well au. thenticated to admit of a doubt. I have even talked with Rip Van Winkle myself, who, when last I saw him, was a very venerable old man, and so perfectly rational and consistent on every other point, that I think no conscientious person could refuse to take this into the bargain; nay, I have seen a certificate on the subject taken before a country justice, and signed with a cross, in the justice's own nd writing. The
story, therefore, is beyond the possibility of doubt.” We now present our readers with the story itself, and leave them to judge of its authen
WHOEVER has made a voyage up | mounted with ancient weathercocks. the Hudson must remember the Kaat - In that same village, and in one of skill mountains. They are a dismem- these very houses, (which, to tell the bered branch of the great Appalachian precise truth, was sadly time-worn and family, and are seen away to the west weather-beaten), there lived many years of the river, swelling up to a noble since, while the country was yet a proheight and lording it over the surround-vince of Great Britain, a simple gooding country. Every change of season, natured fellow, of the name of Rip Van every change of weather, indeed every Winkle. He was a descendant of the hour of the day produces some change Van Winkles, who figured so gallantly in the magical hues and shapes of these in the chivalrous days of Peter Stuyvemountains, and they are regarded by all sant, and accompanied him to the siege the good wives, far and near, as perfect of Fort Christiana. He inherited, howbarometers. When the weather is fair ever, but little of the martial character and settled, they are clothed in blue of his ancestors. I have observed that and purple, and print their bold outlines he was a simple, good-natured man; he on the clear evening sky; but some was, moreover, a kind neighbour, and times when the rest of the landscape is an obedient henpecked husband. Incloudless, they will gather a hood of deed, to the latter circumstance might grey vapours about theirsummits, which, be owing that meekness of spirit which in the last rays of the setting sun, will gained him such universal popularity; glow and light up like a crown of glory. for these men are more apt to be obse
At the foot of these fairy mountains, quious and conciliating abroad, who are the voyager may have descried a light under the discipline of shrews at home. smoke curling up from a village, whose Their tempers, doubtless, are rendered shingle roofs gleam among the trees, pliant and malleable in the fiery furnace just where the blue tints of the upland of domestic tribulation, and a curtain melt
away into the fresh green of the lecture is worth all the sermons in the nearer landscape. It is a little village world for teaching the virtues of patience of great antiquity, having been founded and long suffering. A termagant wife by some of the Dutch colonists, in the may therefore, in some degree, be conearly times of the province, just about sidered a tolerable blessing; and if so, the beginning of the government of the Rip Van Winkle was thrice blessed. good Peter Stuyvesant, (may he rest in Certain it is, that he was a great fapeace !) and there were some of the vourite among all the good wives of the houses of the original settlers standing village, who, as usual with the amiable within a few years, built of some yellow sex, took his part in all family squabbricks brought from Holland, having bles; and never failed, whenever they laticed windows and gable fronts, sur talked those matters over in their even