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upon her; but her soul was asleep, and Desiderata dreamed only of Adalbert.

But, after awhile, as Adalbert at Charlemagne's court grew weary of battles and feasts and adventures, his heart turned again to Desiderata, and he went and stood by the sea-side near Fontarabia. And because the stars by night tell the sea all the secrets of heaven, and the rivers running into it all the secrets of earth, he asked the Sea where he should find his Love again. But the waves laughed together, and whispered words he could not understand, and would not tell him anything of Desiderata. Then a little child came singing at sunrise along the golden sands, in poor ragged clothes, and with no shoes on its little feet; and presently it stumbled over the sharp stones, and fell into a thornbush that grew there, and the thorns pierced its forehead and hands till they bled ; but the child sang still. And Adalbert took it to his bosom. Then the child's face glowed from within, and wings grew from his shoulders, and he lifted the prince into the air like a mighty angel ; and lo! Adalbert was in the garden before his palace door. The palace was tall and bright as of old, and he went in; but the doors all stood open, and he went from one chamber to another, and he could not find Desiderata. But in her own bower a fair white lily was growing ; so Adalbert sat down there. And because she had loved the flowers, he took the stem in his hands, and as he wept and said “I love her', he broke the stem :and in a moment Desiderata was at his side, and smiled and kissed his forehead and said, “Now and for ever'.

XXXIX · But where was the palace now, and were these • the lilies'? asked Désirée's little sister. It is seen • sometimes still, I am told', our legendary friend answered : " but what the word is which brings it back — that I shall

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not tell you'. Then arose a blithe discussion, a “spray of

English ss tossed about' from corner to corner of the gray ruin, and the great cross stood above, and silent thorncrowned Image, turning aside, it might have seemed, in pity of circumstances alien so far from human destiny as an hour of unalloyed happiness. · Look on me', had my ears

. · been open to such warning, I knew afterwards He might have said : " Yet a few years, and calamities, not mysterious or avenging, but in the common course of things, will have darkened many hearts beneath me: and one 'it may be, will climb the hill, returning hither alone, and will look on me, and cry for a little help, one moment of these moments again, and that my countenance should turn towards him in sign of mercy'..... Science tells us how throughout spaces so vast that millions of years, not terms of linear distance, is the only expression available to convey any conception of their vastness, a subtle fluid demonstrably exists, by aid of which the light of the remotest star-cloud at last reaches the astronomer : but is there some limit to the votiferous aether of heaven ? Strong in the confidence, in the humility of love, I could not raise this question then ; nor, close to Désirée, had I indeed to search the skies for over-earthly happiness. Gathering one of the lilies of the legend, a scentless silver cup, fringed and filmy with rose, that grew at her feet, she gave it me with a frank smile ; but I could not return it. I sat silent by Désirée with a thousand thoughts which were one thought,--all converging on the determination I would delay no longer, prophetic of victory at last, the crown of love returned, the desire accomplished. She was speaking, I believe, but I heard only, not articulate words, but an inner remembrance of that strain of Beethoven, in which, reappearing after a hundred variations, the

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trembling air runs through ripples of melodious ascent, till on the highest octave it seems to triumph in the consummation of some ineffable longing, and passes beyond cognizance in the ecstacy of its own music. It was one of those moments, tranquil from the very depth and transcending tenderness of joy, when desire almost passes into possession : when the so far distant star appears graspable by the intensity of our gaze upon it: when by an identification how inexpressibly delightful, Faith has become the substance of what it hopes for.

XL-Was it so indeed ? " You seem to see the palace • of Desiderata', the words with which Désirée broke this reverie, left me uncertain : I was startled, not as often, when another speaks our own thoughts, but that she did not speak them. The time had come; yet I must, I knew, hasten thence first for decision of certain material circumstances (not requiring record here,) in England. I too would part on this holy hill from my Desiderata, to return and make her mine more truly. Taking leave at once where we stood, the blue riddle of Désirée's eyes on mine, and her blithe farewell the last sound I heard, I retraversed the well-known way. Sharing in the decisiveness of my determination, this seemed but a moment's journey to England : I need not give it more detail. Then, writing a few words — and how few contained all, I wondered as if through some strange spell, chased by self from self, I hastened across the farther sea on a mission which could not be declined to Ireland. For there, after various revolutions of fortune, our old family nurse had made a final settlement in the city of Cashel ; she was ill, begged a visit from one of her children, and several reasons concurrently determined me to obey the summons. Some days must pass before Désirée's reply, and it would

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be a comfort to speak at last and share hopes with a friend so faithful. For deeply convinced that to take counsel, in such matters at least, is cowardice, I had hitherto been silent to all :—but I had dared the conclusive deed now; I might justly seek the reward of sympathy.

There is no necessity however to record the words and experiences of a visit, only memorable to me because it fell at a season

so critical.

With many wise sayings, many homely phrases, texts, and childly endearments, and womanly tears, this aged early friend listened to my story delighted. Need I say she approved all her nurseling had done ; thought me right in delay, and right in action ; gently clapped her hands at learning the letter was despatched ; that she held my triumph secure; that in her judgment it was Désirée's happy fortune deserved envy? Thus my last images of light and hope are strangely blended with recollections of that ancient capital ; with the furrowed features, and worn hands, and low voice of one who now knows how far the humble confidence of her own faith was surely founded. I may perhaps never visit Cashel again ; but never, I suppose, shall forget the last evening there, as the sun melted down into ruby haze behind the purple rock, and great cathedral, the square castletower of old troublous times, the battlemented chancel ; nor, with these remembrances, the last consolations of this aged saint. Ready now to start for England, and find there the words of final solution, I expressed some natural, I hoped not foolish, fears. She looked up, laying her hands on mine, and laughing blithely as she pointed out the road homewards, Go, go', she said, like the saint who consoled the mother of Augustine, trust in God ; it cannot be that He will bring the cry of so many years to nothing?

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THE PASSIONATE PILGRIM.

Book III.

I Meanwhile, round which of the many noble buildings of London, ignorantly underrated from familiarity and from the vastness of our metropolital area, is human interest gathered in largest amount, and with most vital sympathy? Which, to the angels in guard over the world's capital, bears the most grandly pathetic significance ? Not the stronghold of Caesar and of Conqueror, although within that spectral whiteness of turreted wall sovereigns have inaugurated their reign with exultation, and closed it in the agonies of discrowned dishonour ; though girls and children, statesmen and prelates, have consecrated the spot with innocent blood, or ennobled it by final fortitude;—not the more than Cathedral Abbey, although within this alone amongst the sanctuaries of Europe, the kings of twenty generations sleep a sleep unbroken by the clarion of foreign foes, or the wild footsteps of intoxicated anarchy ;-not the halls where, as in a colossal and labyrinthine reliquary of human kind, the vestiges of man's creation darken the air with phantasmal forms, and load it with the mysterious voices of annihilated centuries. . . . . All these, indeed, in solemnity of interest far transcend any pomp or pro

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