Sidor som bilder


old Æmilian Way, and crossed the yel- lowed the steps of his loquacious cicelow Tiber, and rode through the vast After an hour's walking they relics of unnumbered ages into the foul reached an open space in the suburbs and ruin-cumbered streets of her, whi- of the town, and here, before the porlom the Queen of Empires. Hope was tals of what had in its day been a proud exulting at his heart, and rapiure, palace-home of nobles, but was now the mighty yearning toward the play- all dismantled and fast falling into mates of his first innocent and guiltless ruin, he halted at the Italian's bidding. days—the sharers of his first joys and Eccola !” he exclaimed, “ Sigsorrows, soon to be gratified by full nore- --this is the villa of the old Panfruition of their love-the high antici- dolfi.” pations of their surprise, their more “ This, fellow - this?" cried the ihan earthly joy-the dreams, all but astonished and horror-stricken soldier, accomplished, of a calm, honorable, “ why this is a mere ruin. No one happy future. The very clatter of his can live here, in this damp and dishorse's hoofs on the rough pavement mantled shell." of those streets that erst resounded to “ Yes, yes, there do, signore-many the march of Cæsar's brazen legions, poor folks live here-quite many famithe martial symphonies of thrice six lies. His excellency, can surely see hundred years of conquest and of em- the lights there on the fourth story. pire, was drowned by the loud beat- There, I have heard tell, live the Eng. ings of his tumultuous heart. The nio- lish strangers, of whom, no doubt, his puments that at another time would excellency is in quest; they say that have enchained his very soul in awe. they were nobles in their own distant stricken and voiceless admiration, were land, though now so poor—oh me, so passed in heedless haste. The ruins of poor! and I believe it, too, signore, for the immortal Coliseum, the great mo once I saw the youthful signorioa, and dern fane of his own cherished faith, though she was so pale and bent and the pillars of the mighty dead, the delicate, and clad, too, in the poorest altars of the living God, were scarcely weeds, she was of the extremest beauseen, as he spurred by them, so eager ty, with blue eyes--blue as the heavens and impetuous was his haste to clasp above us—and beautiful blond hair, those loved ones to his bosom. His and little hands and feet, and a shape courier led him to an inn, and roused like a wood-nymph-and such an air the sleepy inmates; and there, declin- too—so serene, and calm, and prouding all the offers of the obsequious proud with a sort of tranquil and halfItalian host, even at that untimely humble haughliness-oh, beyond doubt hour he procured the services of a she is noble !". guide, who should conduct him forth Then lead on-lead on quickly," with to the obscure and sordid quarter exclaimed the fiery youth, “ death of wherein those adored exiles had occu- your life, lead on!" and with the words pied a temporary home. Distant, in- ihey entered at the unbarred door ; and deed, and obscure and loathsome was passing, on the first and second floors, that quarter.

very streets were the foul and miserable lairs of the most heaped with festering piles of decayed low and wretched paupers, they vegetables, dead dogs, and filth and stumbled in the dark up the frail, garbage of every possible description. creaking stairs, reeking with every The houses, or huts rather, were sort of foul and nauseous abomination, wretched, low, half-ruined tenements, until they reached the corridor at the with here and there the giant relics of head of the fourth flight. some immortal structure of the old iron Here, most unlike the regions they Romans frowning down in contempt had passed, they found the landingupon the squalor and base lethargic place, though ruinous and tottering, supineness of their degenerate descend- quite clean and neatly swept, with a ants ;-and amid these, with a heart coarse mat before each door, and a now bleeding at the bare idea of the light burning in a rude lanthorn of privations, the distress, the misery, oiled paper, swung from the ceiling by both past and present, of those beloved a long hempen cord. The noise which ones, now kiodling into rapturous joy had been made by Gerald and his at the bright anticipation of their open- guide as they were mounting the deing prospects, the gallant soldier fol. cayed and clattering steps, had roused,

as it would seem, the inmates; for added, Alinging several broad pieces to before they could knock at the door of the guide who had conducted him. the apartment, whence they had seen “Fly! and bring food, wine, fruit-The the light while in the street below, it best and costliest-summon the wisest was thrown open, and a young man, leeches-begone! nay, send my couror stripling rather, for he could not ier hither! now lead in, lead in, Spenpossibly have exceeded his eighteenth cer—where is my brother Ulick?" summer-appeared on the lintel with a “ Watching by Marcia's bed; she light in one hand, and a long-barrelled slumbers the last hour-but Gerald, horseman's pistol in the other, inquir. Gerald, all hope is over now; the ing in a querulous and impatient tone, surgeon has assured us that she cannot who it was that came thither, with so live beyond 10-morrow, and she, too, much noise, and at an hour so untime. feels and knows it; the last rites of our ly. Gerald gazed steadfastly upon him, church have been administered, and and scarcely recognized the form or fea- all but the last struggle is already over. tures of one who had been his mother's We had—I say, we had even nerved darling, the pride and pet and beauty our souls to bear it! but this-thisof the household. The long dark hair, this is indeed too much! to see aid indeed, still tell back froin his broad close at hand, but useless—to feel and and noble brows in rich luxuriance, know that had this come but two but the wild flashing light of the blue weeks sooner-she might have lived eye was dimmed and clouded; the for years to bless us! and now-now, speaking features were downcast, and Gerald, before another sun shall selpale, and thin, and haggard; the frame Heaven will have gained an angel-was lean and wasted, almost to ema- and we lost

Oh God! grant us ciation; the dress, though scrupulously power to bear it!" and a long food of neat and cleanly, was of the most convulsive weeping concluded his incopenurious fashion and material. Thus herent and passionate lamentation. the two brothers met, the elder gazing And now, astonished at the long stay half doubtfully on the younger, al- of Spencer, and perhaps apprehensive though the light fell full upon his face of some fresh evil, the second brother, -the younger not once suspecting that Ulick, came forth barefooted from the the stranger, splendidly clad in a half- bedside of his dying sister. “What is military, foreign garb, could be the the matter--what new ill is it, Spen. brother who, he had too much reason cer ?” he inquired, in a voice so holto believe, had fallen twelve months at low, yet so resolute and set, that one least before, in a far distant region. saw readily that fate had dealt already But Gerald gazed not long before he so sternly with the speaker that there found the traces, although changed and was indeed scarcely any ill which faded, of what he yet remembered in could now shake him further. that young wasted visage.

“No ill-no ill—but oh, my God! “Spencer," he cried, “ do you not it is a good that cuts more deeply than know me, Spencer ? It is I, Gerald any evil we have undergone!"-exDesmond-I have been searching for claimed the boy, still sobbing half conyou this year past, and praise be to God! vulsively. “ Gerald has come backI have found you, even thus, thus come back to us from the grave-with wretchedly! But this shall be amended; wealth, and happiness, and hope within I bring you hope and happiness!" his giving-when it is all too late!”

"Too late! you bring them too late, "Gerald come back! you are mad, Gerald,” exclaimed the boy, flinging boy!"--cried the elder and somewhat aside both light and pistol, and throw- less impulsive Ulick. “Gerald is cold ing himself into his brother's arms, in a bloody grave beside Boyne wasobbing upon his bosom as if his heart terwould break. “ Too late, for one of us “ Indeed he is not, Ulick," answered at least; and she, the best, the dearest." Gerald, advancing towards him with

“Who? what? In the name of extended arms; “I was, indeed, severeHeaven, what mean you ?"

ly wounded, but I came off alive, and “ Marcia is dying."

managed to escape; and here I am, “No! no! oh no!” cried Gerald, dear brother, with not much wealth "Oh God! my God-it cannot-shall indeed, but with good hope of happi

tell me, Ulick, tell me that this poor which had been ever so rich an ornaboy is distraught with suffering and ment to her unrivalled beauty, now sorrow-tell me, I pray you, as you folded simply round the classic outwould have me live, that Marcia is not lines of a head whose symmetry nothing dying!”

could allier or impair, was dim and “Would God I could-would God, tangled, and clogged with the cold I could so tell you, Gerald-with any dews of coming dissolution. Her lovely hope of speaking truly! But there is features, still lovely, though all sharp: no hope now except in Heaven. She ened and emaciated, were pale and never was, you know, other than deli- white as snow, with every blue vein cate and weak; and now famine, and visibly rising up above the surface of cold, and hope deferred, and sorrow, the skin. Her lips alone retained their have wasted her down to a shadow; natural hue, but high up on either and she has waned and faded day by cheek bone there was a small round day-paler and thinner, and more fee. spot of that intense and fearful crimson, ble, till it would seem that now there which is perhaps the surest indication is nothing bodily about her. Her spirit of that accursed disease, which ever is indeed as sweet and beautiful and seems to select for its victims the strong as ever—but, Gerald, that spirit brightest and loveliest of our race. will be with its God to-morrow !” There needed no words now to con

He answered no word; but went in, vince Gerald Desmond that hope insilently and softly; and passing through deed had fed. He stood upon the the outer room, a large and once mag. threshold, motionless, voiceless, pasnificent saloon, now all dismantled and sionless; smitten as it would seem to stripped bare, and quite unfurnished stone, like her who in one hour bewith the exception of a pallet bed, a held the whole of that fair progeny in large rude table, and some two or which she so exulted pierced by the three broken chairs, entered the bed- vengeful arrows of Latona's vengeance. chamber of his dying sister. Here, as He stood, and gazed, gazed steadfasuly in all that he had seen, everything was and silently, upon that dying sister as clean as in the noblest mansion, but whom his heart had so long yearned to poor almost beyond anything that we gather to his bosom. He gazed appacan conceive of poverty. The very bed rently unmoved, for hope was dead on which the sick girl lay was desti- within him, and he felt in the unuttertute of necessary coverings, and to sup- able anguish of that moment as if he ply the want of these a portion of her never should feel anything again. It brothers' garments had been spread was that girl, that sister, for whom his over her emaciated form; for it was spirit had so toiled and grieved-for winter, and, although in Italy, the cold whom his hopes had so been kindledof those large, fireless, and unfurnish- and now to fiud her thus! Not a tear ed chambers was damp, and of a came to bedew his burning eyelids, piercing chilloess. And she, the girl pot a groan relieved the tension of his who lay there-living, but death-like! bursting bosom. His brothers stood beit was but too unquestionably evident, hind him, and prepared, as they were, as those, who had so faithfully attend to see some passionate and lamentable ed her, had not failed to perceive, that outbreak of his feelings, they were all in truth of life, save the last parting appalled almost beyond conception by struggle, was already over. She lay his calm air, and utter want, as it upon her back, with one arm folded appeared, of any sense of agony or over her frail bosom, and so attenuated sorrow. By and by he kneeled down was her whole frame by the insidious beside her bed, and burying his head in malady which was consuming her, the coverlid, waited 'in speechless that it scarce seemed to elevate the anguish the time of her awaking: An bed-clothes; her thin transparent fin- hour perhaps passed thus, and day gers, liker to the claws of a bird than was beginning to dawn faintly; and io a human hand, clutched with a sounds of some early passengers and feverish grasp the linen which was country carts were occasionally heard scarce whiter than themselves, as it in the streets, when the poor invalid rose and fell with a motion hardly per- moved restlessly, and murmured someceptible, so feeble was the breathing of thing in her sleep-it was the name of the sleeper. The fine golden hair, Gerald-then! then ! the tears gushed

out from the eyes, hitherto so hot and quick! kiss me, Gerald-dear-deararid, of the stout-hearted soldier ; uot est--Spencer--Ulick-Oh! my God, singly or in drops, but in a flood at this is--this is—Gerald-Geronce, as of some prisoned lake that and the word died upon her lips, and bursts the floodgate which confines it. her white arms released their hold, She moved again, and raised her eye- and without groan, or sigh, or strugo lids, displaying the unnatural bright- gle, a radiant smile beaming on every ness of the clear glassy orbs within, ihin transparent feature, she

sank back and making a slight effort to raise here on the pillow. self up in bed—“Spencer,” she mur. It was over-over with all its toils, mured, “ Ulick, is it morning? Oh, I and feverish joys, and fitful sorrowshave slept so sweetly; and such de- life's anxious' dream--and she slept lightful dreams have visited my pillow; well! my father has been standing by my During those moments of overmasterside, and our dear mother, with that ing excitement, all of the brothers were sweet smile upon her lips, that we aware that several persons had come can never any of us cease to recollect, into the apartment, but not one of them but oh! so radiant and immortal. And had turned to take note who. It was then I dreamed that Gerald had come the courier, with the physician and the back to us, our own lost Gerald, nurses; and with them came by acci“ And if it were so, Marcia,” replied dent the kind confessor, who was the the younger Desmond. “ If what were only friend the Desmonds had found in so ?" said the girl, evidently much ex- their sorrow. Having foreseen, on the cited, not seeing her long lost brother previous evening, the

near approach of whose form was shadowed by the ihe destroyer, he had come in with the curtain, “what can you mean? If first dawn of day to soothe his lovely Gerald had returned ? He has! he patient by his pure ministering; and has ! I see it in your faces; he was his was the deep sad sonorous voice, not killed, he has come back to us! which exclaimed in tones of almost oh God, all merciful and gracious unearthly harmony, as he stretched God! all glory be to thee, that thou forth his arms over the mournful group, hast listened to the sinner's prayer.” “ The Lord gave, the Lord hath taken

“He has, indeed, returned, sweet away; Blessed be the name of the Marcia,” exclaimed Gerald, rising up Lord ! Orate, fratres !"and at the words from his knees, “my own dear, dearest all sank upon their knees unquestionsister;" and, as he stooped down to em ing, and communed with their God in brace her, with an exertion of strength silent sorrow. such as she had not been capable of There was an open space--a small before for many days, she sprang into green meadow without the walls of bis arms, and clasped her hands con. the Eternal City, yet still within the vulsively about his neck, and covered shadow of their old renown; a small his lips with close burning kisses. green meadow, covered with the softest

“Oh, God be praised !" she cried;“Oh, and the richest turf that ever clad the God be praised ! ihat I have seen, have bosom of Italian earth; washed on one kissed you again, Gerald, dear Gerald, side by the immortal waves of Tiber, my own darling brother! Now shall I and watered by a nameless rill that go hence happy—now shall I die all found its way down from some one of happily and willing; for this, for this the seven hills to join the deathless alone did my soul iarry! Let me look river. On one side of this verdant on thee, Gerald--bring the light nearer, space there stood a small white pyra

Spencer-nearer—yet nearer--brother mid, erected over the last home of . -Oh, it is dim, so dim!”—and she Caius Ceştius. It was a spot little

drew her head back a little way, and known in those days, though it has held that beloved face at arm's length now obtained a sad celebrity, having for a minute, gazing upon his features, been consecrated of late years as the as if she would devour them with her Protestant burying-ground of Rome, eyes before they faded from her sight where many a weary. head has laid for ever. Then drawing him once down to its last sleep, far from friends, more toward her, “Oh!” she ex- home, and kindred; but there was claimed, “Oh I am too, too happy! so something so calm and beautiful in its sweet sa calmly tranquil! Kiss me sequestered site, that it had ever been

a favorite haunt of Marcia Desmond. three tall chargers. The DesmondsShe had found there, in one of her for they it was who were gathered for lonely rambles, an antique tomb, the the last time round the bed of their tomb of a Roman girl-like herself, cherished sister-had hung a garland young and most un happy. There is, on the headstone; had prayed and indeed, something very touching in the wept in silence over those loved ashes. brief record which is borne hy that And now they bent them, one by one, time-worn slab, as it has been recorded and kissed the turf that covered ihem, by the mightiest bard of modern Eng- and rose up calm and tearless, and land; and when it is considered that mounted their war-horses, and, withMarcia found, or fancied, a strong out turning their heads, rode away similarity between the fortunes of the rapidly on the way that led to France. young Roman and her own, it will not Another year passed over, and be surprising that she should have though the death of Marcia had cast a chosen it as a favorite place of medita- deep and continual gloom over the tion, and, when she became aware that life of Gerald Desmond, he forced she was dying, that she should have himself to maintain a firm and cheerselected its vicinity for her long home. ful bearing, and did his duty ever, as a A very old stone-pine shadows it with man, a soldier, and a Christian. His an almost gloomy umbrage; and in youngest brother, Spencer, had been the leaves of that old pine there is a admitted instantly on their return to never silent whisper that harmonizes Paris to an ensigncy in the English with the ripple of the little stream, Guard, and Ulick was appointed capthe only other sound that is heard in tain in the French corps of Marines. these lovely precincts. Beneath the The war still raged beiween the govtree and beside the rivulet, stood the ernments of France and England; discolored slab that told where slept although, since Ireland had been rethe sleep of ages

duced completely by Ginckel, in the des.

perate affairs of Athlone and Aghrim, Julia Alpinula

it was carried on almost entirely by sea. Powerful fleets had been equipped by both nations; and although the English, when supported by the Dutch squadron, were somewhat superior in

numbers, that superiority was in no And on the evening of the very day wise sufficient to deter their adversaries that saw the death of Marcia, there from disputing the possession of the was another low green mound hard narrow seas, with obstinate and daring by it, with a small cross of snow-white gallantry. A large encampment had marble at the feet, and a plain upright been formed on the coast of Normandy pillar at the head, whereon were carved at La Hogue, in which no less than these words

twelve thousand Irish, who had chosen to undergo exile from their native land, rather than to endure the government of King William, were assembled still under the commission and command of

King James the Second, although new Oh utinam nos quoque!

clothed and armed at the expense of

the King of France. These gallant Around this humble tomb, when the spirits,—to reinforce whom the English moon had just risen above the summit Guards had been marchied down from of the pyramid of Cestius, three youths Paris, as well as several of the best were kneeling; two clad in complete regiments of the French Line, with a suits of handsome mourning, with fine park of artillery,—were full of black-hilted rapiers by their side, the brightest hopes of being soon permitted third in the superb uniform of the to invade their own dear island, English Guard, with a black scarf wherein they well knew that one about his arm, and a crape sword- bright gleam of success would stir up knot on the hilt of his weapon. At a thousands, aye! tens of thousands, of short distance sat a

on his wild fiery hearts to their assistance. horse, and a boy near him was holding Triumphant aspirations, higli dicams

Hic jaceo,
Infelicis patris infelix proles,

Deæ Aventinæ sacerdos;
Exorare patris necem non potui
Male mori in fatis ille eral.

Vixi anno xxIII.

Marcia Desmond,

Anno Etatis xvimo.,
Patriæ infelicis infelix exul.
Dulcissime ad memoriam sororis
Hunc lapidem sacravimus,

Fraties infelicissimi.

Ora et adora.


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