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Title: Evolution of Expression, Volume 2—Revised

Author: Charles Wesley Emerson

Release date: November 29, 2010 [eBook #34498]

Language: English

Credits: E-text prepared by Barbara Tozier, Bill Tozier, and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team



E-text prepared by Barbara Tozier, Bill Tozier,
and the Online Distributed Proofreading Team





Evolution of Expression


Evolution of Expression


Charles Wesley Emerson

Founder of Emerson College of Oratory


In Four Volumes, with Key to each Chapter





Publishing Department

Copyrighted by C. W. Emerson

The Barta Press


Slide 7
Vital Slide 8
Slide in Volume 9
Forming Pictures 10
Chapter I.
Tact and Talent London Atlas 13
Shylock to Antonio William Shakespeare 15
The Cynic H. W. Beecher 16
Good By, Proud World R. W. Emerson 18
The Destruction of Sennacherib Lord Byron 19
Unwritten Music N. P. Willis 20
Laus Mortis Frederic Lawrence Knowles 23
Taxation of the Colonies Edmund Burke 24
My Heart Leaps Up William Wordsworth 29
Forest Scene From As You Like It William Shakespeare 30
Chapter II.
The Rising in 1776 T. B. Read 35
The Tent-Scene Between Brutus and Cassius William Shakespeare 39
The Forging of the Anchor S. Ferguson 43
Supposed Speech of John Adams Daniel Webster 48
Life and Song Sidney Lanier 53
Gathering Song of Donald the Black Sir Walter Scott 54
[4] Nutting William Wordsworth 55
The Dodson Family George Eliot 58
After the March Kain William Wordsworth 66
Chapter III.
First Battles of the Revolution Edward Everett 67
The Antiquity of Freedom W. C. Byrant 70
National Bankruptcy Mirabeau 73
The Lantern Bearers Robert Louis Stevenson 74
Tarpeia Louise Imogen Guiney 78
The Bells E. A. Poe 82
The Temperance Question Wendell Phillips 86
Sheridan's Ride T. B. Read 89
To a Pupil Walt Whitman 92
Chapter IV.
The Pickwickians on Ice Charles Dickens 93
The Realm of Fancy J. Keats 103
The Battle of Naseby Lord Macaulay 106
The Glories of Morning Edward Everett 109
The Chambered Nautilus O. W. Holmes 111
Autumn H. W. Beecher 112
Midsummer J. T. Trowbridge 116
The Kitten and Falling Leaves William Wordsworth 118
Summer Storm James Russell Lowell 121
Jaques' Seven Ages of Man William Shakespeare 125



Love took up the harp of life and smote on all the chords with might,
Smote the chord of Self, that, trembling, passed in music out of sight.


The power to detach, and to magnify by detaching, is the essence of rhetoric in the hands of the orator and the poet. This rhetoric, or power to fix the momentary eminence of an object, so remarkable in Burke, in Byron, in Carlyle—depends upon the depth of the artist's insight of that object he contemplates.


[6] For use of selections in this volume especial thanks are tendered Houghton, Mifflin & Co., Frederic Lawrence Knowles, Horace Traubel, Secretary Walt Whitman Fellowship, and J. T. Trowbridge.



Thus far in the student's development, his mind has dealt chiefly with each subject as a Whole. Now he begins to find a new interest in showing his hearers that the discourse is made up of a series of definite Parts. He takes delight in fixing their attention upon each part in succession.

As in crossing a brook on stones, a person poises for a moment, first on one stone, then on another, so the speaker balances the minds of his hearers, first on one thought, then another, poising for a moment on each distinct point before leaving it for the next. The teacher should now lead the pupil to attract attention to separate parts as wholes. We are entering the melodramatic stage, where abandon to each part is as necessary as it was in the beginning to the spirit of the whole. The pupil must see the parts and give them to others at any cost.

In the history of art this step is marked by the grotesque; the pupil should be encouraged to stand out the points of thought boldly, regardless of artistic effect. This step is of vital importance in all future development, and unless emphasized now, will require constant effort hereafter.

Sharp contrasts are brought strongly to bear in presenting vividly and distinctly separate points of thought. As the pupil earnestly strives to impress each point of thought, in all its new interest, his voice becomes more decidedly modulated, rising and falling in distinct intervals. Thought of each part as a whole and by contrast, together with the desire to impart it, is reported[8] in varied inflections which add a new charm to expression. Through slides the voice of the speaker may be said to express the tune of the thought.

Analysis. Example: "Tact and Talent." (Page 13.)

Unit, or Whole: A comparison of Tact and Talent.


(a) The characteristics of Tact.


1. Tact is infinitely resourceful. Paragraph 1, etc.

2. Tact is the power which achieves results. Paragraph 2, etc.

(Other "sub-parts" may be enumerated.)

(b) The characteristics of Talent.

(A number of "sub-parts" are embodied.)

The teacher should view the work of the pupil with special reference to the parts of this selection, leading him to impress these parts, or successive points of thought, upon his audience. The continued antithesis makes this selection a good one for the purpose; parts that are set in contrast easily engage the attention.



As the mind of the pupil separates each thought from the other main thoughts of the discourse, and holds it before the minds of his hearers, he finds it more and more attractive. His endeavor to interest others deepens his own interest, and the slides in his voice report this increased concentration, in increased vitality. The pupil seeing the spirit and life of the whole in each vital part, or part vital to the life of the unit, desires to make each part live as a whole in the minds of the listeners. He no[9] longer touches it with uncertain stroke; the slide has become a Vital Slide.

Analysis. Example: "The Rising of 1776." (Page 35.)

Unit, or Whole: A pastor of early Revolutionary times who makes his Sunday sermon an appeal for freedom.


(a) The spirit of the times. Stanza 1.

(b) The church and the people. Stanzas 2 and 3.

(c) The pastor and his appeal. Stanzas 4, 5, 6 and part of 9.

(d) The effect of the appeal. Stanzas 7, 8 and 9.

Let the student's earnest endeavor be to interest his audience in these essential parts. The words which especially reveal these vital parts of the selection will be given with no uncertain stroke. If the interest of both speaker and listener is fully aroused, the slide has become a vital one. Remember always that the desired effect in the voice results from the mental concept; it is not developed mechanically, but grows out of thought.



As the mind of the student continues to dwell upon the parts of the subject as separate and distinct wholes, there is gradually developed within him an appreciation of the value of each part. Out of the effort to make each thought live in the minds of the hearers is born the desire to reveal the value of that thought. This desire is reported in the voice through Slide in Volume.

The significance of the term Volume has been explained in an earlier chapter. The valuable parts that the speaker presents are expressed through inflections that suggest breadth and freedom. Each part is felt to have a value of its own, intellectual, moral, esthetic, or spiritual.[10]

Freedom of will is expressed in the voice by slide in volume, for the speaker, convinced of the truth of his thought, is learning obedience to it, and obedience is always the way to freedom.

It must be remembered that the intellect determines the value of the parts. It is true that the discernment is sharpened by the sensibility; but the feelings, unguided by the thought, may be misleading. Feeling is dangerous unless controlled by thought. All sentiment must be directed to the audience "thought foremost"—the thought itself must induce the feeling.

Analysis. Example: "The Bells." (Page 82.)

Unit of thought: Varied bells, expressing varied emotion.


(a) The tinkling bells of Merriment. Stanza 1.

(b) The mellow bells of Love. Stanza 2.

(c) The clanging bells of Terror. Stanza 3.

(d) The tolling bells of Menace. Stanza 4.

This poem is well adapted to develop power in emphasizing parts: the several parts are very distinctly differentiated, as the student must reveal through the rendering. He should strive to reveal them as graphically as the author has set them forth. Moreover, he should endeavor to make their value felt. In doing this, he will perceive the varying scale of values; some of the bells reflect great value, others less.



The student's persistent endeavor to impress the successive parts of his theme upon the minds in his presence will eventually lead him to see those parts in picturesque groupings. As he flashes these pictures upon the mental vision of the audience,[11] they become clearer to his own vision. His own power of imagery is in proportion to his ability to impart this power to others. Herein lies one of the most helpful means of cultivating the imagination,—the eye of the intellect,—the basis of all sympathy. Every effort to tell a story clearly so as to impress its details upon the minds of others, every attempt to picture a landscape, a meadow, a river, a sunset vividly to others, quickens and strengthens the pupil's own imaging power. His attempt to make his listeners put themselves in the place of another, see through the eyes and from the point of view of a Wordsworth or Shakespeare, quickens his own imagination, broadens his sympathies, and develops his intellect as nothing else can. "The man of imagination has lived all lives, has enjoyed all heavens, and felt the pang of every hell."

The student must continue to watch for the effect of his words in other minds. He cannot afford to be introspective while speaking, for the mind cannot be in the creative and in the critical state at the same time. The pictures, then, must be formed in the minds of the hearers; they are the only canvas upon which he can hope to paint his picturesque parts. They are the mirror in which the pictures of his thought must be reflected, as the stars are mirrored in the waters of the lake.

Analysis. Example: "The Chambered Nautilus." (Page 111.)

Unit, or Whole: The lesson of the Chambered Nautilus.


(a) The Nautilus. Stanzas 1, 2.

(b) Its method of growth. Stanza 3.

(c) Its message to the soul. Stanzas 4, 5.

Lead the pupil to present a clear picture of "the ship of pearl," of its own original environment and course of evolution, and of the beautiful figure which embodies the lesson.[12]




1. Talent is something, but tact is everything. Talent is serious, sober, grave, and respectable; tact is all that, and more too. It is not a sixth sense, but it is the life of all the five. It is the open eye, the quick ear, the judging taste, the keen smell, and the lively touch; it is the interpreter of all riddles, the surmounter of all difficulties, the remover of all obstacles. It is useful in all places, and at all times; it is useful in solitude, for it shows a man his way into the world; it is useful in society, for it shows him his way through the world.

2. Talent is power, tact is skill; talent is weight, tact is momentum; talent knows what to do, tact knows how to do it; talent makes a man respectable, tact will make him respected; talent is wealth, tact is ready money.

3. For all the practical purposes of life, tact carries it against talent, ten to one. Take them to the theatre,[14] and put them against each other on the stage, and talent shall produce you a tragedy that will scarcely live long enough to be condemned, while tact keeps the house in a roar, night after night, with its successful farces. There is no want of dramatic talent, there is no want of dramatic tact; but they are seldom together: so we have successful pieces which are not respectable, and respectable pieces which are not successful.

4. Take them to the bar, and let them shake their learned curls at each other in legal rivalry. Talent sees its way clearly, but tact is first at its journey's end. Talent has many a compliment from the bench, but tact touches fees from attorneys and clients. Talent speaks learnedly and logically, tact triumphantly. Talent makes the world wonder that it gets on no faster, tact excites astonishment that it gets on so fast. And the secret is, that tact has no weight to carry; it makes no false steps; it hits the right nail on the head; it loses no time; it takes all hints; and, by keeping its eye on the weathercock, is ready to take advantage of every wind that blows.

5. Take them into the church. Talent has always something worth hearing, tact is sure of abundance of hearers; talent may obtain a good living, tact will make one; talent gets a good name, tact a great one; talent convinces, tact converts; talent is an honor to the profession, tact gains honor from the profession.

6. Place them in the senate. Talent has the ear of[15] the house, but tact wins its heart, and has its votes; talent is fit for employment, but tact is fitted for it. Tact has a knack of slipping into place with a sweet silence and glibness of movement, as a billiard ball insinuates itself into the pocket. It seems to know everything, without learning anything. It has served an invisible and extemporary apprenticeship; it wants no drilling; it never ranks in the awkward squad; it has no left hand, no deaf ear, no blind side. It puts on no looks of wondrous wisdom, it has no air of profundity, but plays with the details of place as dexterously as a well-taught hand flourishes over the keys of the pianoforte. It has all the air of commonplace, and all the force and power of genius.

London Atlas.


Signor Antonio, many a time and oft
In the Rialto you have rated me
About my moneys and my usances:
Still I have borne it with a patient shrug;
For sufferance is the badge of all our tribe.
You call me misbeliever, cut-throat dog,
And spit upon my Jewish gaberdine,
And all for use of that which is mine own.
Well, then, it now appears, you need my help:
Go to, then; you come to me, and you say>—
[16] "Shylock, we would have moneys." You say so;
You that did void your rheum upon my beard,
And foot me, as you spurn a stranger cur
Over your threshold; moneys is your suit.
What should I say to you? Should I not say—
"Hath a dog money? Is it possible
A cur can lend three thousand ducats?" or
Shall I bend low, and in a bondman's key,
With bated breath and whispering humbleness,
Say this—
"Fair sir, you spit on me on Wednesday last;
You spurned me such a day; another time
You called me dog; and for these courtesies
I'll lend you thus much moneys!"



1. The Cynic is one who never sees a good quality in a man, and never fails to see a bad one. He is the human owl, vigilant in darkness and blind to light, mousing for vermin, and never seeing noble game.

2. The Cynic puts all human actions into only two classes—openly bad and secretly bad. All virtue, and generosity, and disinterestedness, are merely the appearance of good, but selfish at the bottom. He holds that no man does a good thing except for profit. The effect of his conversation upon your feelings is to chill and sear them, to send you away sour and morose.[17]

3. His criticisms and innuendoes fall indiscriminately upon every lovely thing like frost upon the flowers. If Mr. A. is pronounced a religious man, he will reply: yes, on Sundays. Mr. B. has just joined the church: certainly, the elections are coming on. The minister of the gospel is called an example of diligence: it is his trade. Such a man is generous: of other men's money. This man is obliging: to lull suspicion and cheat you. That man is upright, because he is green.

4. Thus his eye strains out every good quality, and takes in only the bad. To him religion is hypocrisy, honesty a preparation for fraud, virtue only a want of opportunity, and undeniable purity, asceticism. The livelong day he will coolly sit with sneering lip, transfixing every character that is presented.

5. It is impossible to indulge in such habitual severity of opinion upon our fellow-men, without injuring the tenderness and delicacy of our own feelings. A man will be what his most cherished feelings are. If he encourage a noble generosity, every feeling will be enriched by it; if he nurse bitter and envenomed thoughts, his own spirit will absorb the poison, and he will crawl among men as a burnished adder, whose life is mischief, and whose errand is death.

6. He who hunts for flowers will find flowers; and he who loves weeds will find weeds.

Let it be remembered that no man, who is not himself morally diseased, will have a relish for disease in[18] others. Reject, then, the morbid ambition of the Cynic, or cease to call yourself a man.

H. W. Beecher.


Good by, proud world! I'm going home;
Thou'rt not my friend, and I'm not thine.
Long through the weary crowds I roam,
A river-ark on the ocean brine.
Long I've been tossed like the driven foam
And now, proud world, I'm going home.
Good by to Flattery's fawning face;
To Grandeur, with his wise grimace;
To upstart Wealth's averted eye;
To supple Office, low and high;
To crowded halls, to court and street;
To frozen hearts and hasting feet;
To those who go and those who come;
Good by, proud world! I'm going home.
I am going to my own hearthstone,
Bosomed in yon green hills alone—
A secret nook in a pleasant land,
Whose groves the frolic fairies planned,[19]
Where arches green, the livelong day,
Echo the blackbird's roundelay,
And vulgar feet have never trod,—
A spot that is sacred to thought and God.
O, when I am safe in my sylvan home,
I tread on the pride of Greece and Rome;
And when I am stretched beneath the pines
Where the evening star so holy shines,
I laugh at the lore and the pride of man,
At the sophist schools, and the learned clan;
For what are they all, in their high conceit,
When man in the bush with God may meet?

Ralph Waldo Emerson.


The Assyrian came down like the wolf on the fold,
And his cohorts were gleaming in purple and gold;
And the sheen of their spears was like stars on the sea
Where the blue wave rolls nightly on deep Galilee.
Like the leaves of the forest when summer is green,
That host with their banners at sunset were seen;
Like the leaves of the forest when autumn hath blown,
That host on the morrow lay withered and strewn.
[20] For the angel of death spread his wings on the blast,
And breathed in the face of the foe as he passed;
And the eyes of the sleepers waxed deadly and chill,
And their hearts but once heaved, and forever grew still.
And there lay the steed with his nostril all wide,
But through it there rolled not the breath of his pride;
And the foam of his gasping lay white on the turf,
And cold as the spray of the rock-beating surf.
And there lay the rider distorted and pale,
With the dew on his brow and the rust on his mail;
And the tents were all silent, the banners alone,
The lances unlifted, the trumpet unblown.
And the widows of Ashur are loud in their wail,
And the idols are broke in the temple of Baal;
And the might of the Gentile, unsmote by the sword,
Hath melted like snow in the glance of the Lord!

Lord Byron.


1. There is unwritten music. The world is full of it. I hear it every hour that I wake; and my waking sense is surpassed sometimes by my sleeping, though[21] that is a mystery. There is no sound of simple nature that is not music. It is all God's work, and so harmony. You may mingle, and divide, and strengthen the passages of its great anthem; and it is still melody,—melody.

2. The low winds of summer blow over the waterfalls and the brooks, and bring their voices to your ear, as if their sweetness were linked by an accurate finger; yet the wind is but a fitful player; and you may go out when the tempest is up and hear the strong trees moaning as they lean before it, and the long grass hissing as it sweeps through, and its own solemn monotony over all; and the dripple of that same brook, and the waterfall's unaltered bass shall still reach you, in the intervals of its power, as much in harmony as before, and as much a part of its perfect and perpetual hymn.

3. There is no accident of nature's causing which can bring in discord. The loosened rock may fall into the abyss, and the overblown tree rush down through the branches of the wood, and the thunder peal awfully in the sky; and sudden and violent as their changes seem, their tumult goes up with the sound of wind and waters, and the exquisite ear of the musician can detect no jar.

4. I have read somewhere of a custom in the Highlands, which, in connection with the principle it involves, is exceedingly beautiful. It is believed that, to the ear of the dying (which just before death becomes always[22] exquisitely acute,) the perfect harmony of the voices of nature is so ravishing, as to make him forget his suffering, and die gently, as in a pleasant trance. And so, when the last moment approaches, they take him from the close shieling, and bear him out into the open sky, that he may hear the familiar rushing of the streams. I can believe that is not superstition. I do not think we know how exquisitely nature's many voices are attuned to harmony and to each other.

5. The old philosopher we read of might not have been dreaming when he discovered that the order of the sky was like a scroll of written music, and that two stars (which are said to have appeared centuries after his death, in the very places he mentioned) were wanting to complete the harmony. We know how wonderful are the phenomena of color, how strangely like consummate art the strongest dyes are blended in the plumage of birds, and in the cups of flowers; so that, to the practiced eye of the painter, the harmony is inimitably perfect.

6. It is natural to suppose every part of the universe equally perfect; and it is a glorious and elevating thought, that the stars of Heaven are moving on continually to music, and that the sounds we daily listen to are but part of a melody that reaches to the very centre of God's illimitable spheres.

N. P. Willis.


Nay, why should I fear Death,
Who gives us life and in exchange takes breath?
He is like cordial Spring
That lifts above the soil each buried thing;—
Like Autumn, kind and brief
The frost that chills the branches, frees the leaf.
Like Winter's stormy hours,
That spread their fleece of snow to save the flowers.
The loveliest of all things—
Life lends us only feet, Death gives us wings!
Fearing no covert thrust,
Let me walk onward armed with valiant trust.
Dreading no unseen knife,
Across Death's threshold step from life to life!
Oh, all ye frightened folk,
Whether ye wear a crown or bear a yoke,
Laid in one equal bed,
When once your coverlet of grass is spread,
What daybreak need you fear?
The love will rule you there which guides you here!
Where Life, the Sower, stands,
Scattering the ages from his swinging hands,
Thou waitest, Reaper lone,
Until the multitudinous grain hath grown.
Scythe-bearer, when thy blade
Harvest my flesh, let me be unafraid!
God's husbandman thou art!
In His unwithering sheaves, oh, bind my heart.

Frederic Lawrence Knowles.


1. Sir: I agree with the honorable gentleman who spoke last, that this subject is not new to this House. Very disagreeably to this House, very unfortunately to this nation, and to the peace and prosperity of this whole empire, no topic has been more familiar to us. For nine long years, session after session, we have been lashed round and round this miserable circle of occasional arguments and temporary expedients.

2. I am sure our heads must turn and our stomachs nauseate with them. We have had them in every shape. We have looked at them in every point of view. Invention is exhausted; reason is fatigued; experience has given judgment; but obstinacy is not yet conquered.

[25] 3. The act of 1767, which grants this tea-duty, sets forth in its preamble, that it was expedient to raise a revenue in America for the support of the civil government there, as well as for purposes still more extensive. About two years after this act was passed, the ministry thought it expedient to repeal five of the duties, and to leave (for reasons best known to themselves) only the sixth standing.

4. But I hear it rung continually in my ears, now and formerly,—"The preamble! what will become of the preamble if you repeal this tax?" The clerk will be so good as to turn to this act, and to read this favorite preamble.

5. "Whereas it is expedient that a revenue should be raised in your Majesty's dominions in America, for making a more certain and adequate provision for defraying the charge of the administration of justice and support of civil government in such provinces where it shall be found necessary, and towards further defraying the expenses of defending, protecting, and securing the said dominions."

6. You have heard this pompous performance. Now, where is the revenue which is to do all these mighty things? Five-sixths repealed,—abandoned,—sunk,—gone,—lost forever. Does the poor solitary tea-duty support the purposes of this preamble? Is not the supply there stated as effectually abandoned as if the tea-duty had perished in the general wreck? Here,[26] Mr. Speaker, is a precious mockery:—a preamble without an act,—taxes granted in order to be repealed,—and the reason of the grant carefully kept up! This is raising a revenue in America! This is preserving dignity in England!

7. Never did a people suffer so much for the empty words of a preamble. It must be given up. For on what principle does it stand? This famous revenue stands, at this hour, on all the debate, as a description of revenue not as yet known in all the comprehensive (but too comprehensive!) vocabulary of finance—a preambulary tax. It is, indeed, a tax of sophistry, a tax of pedantry, a tax of disputation, a tax of war and rebellion, a tax for anything but benefit to the imposers or satisfaction to the subject.

8. Well! but whatever it is, gentlemen will force the colonists to take the teas. You will force them? Has seven years' struggle been yet able to force them? Oh, but it seems "we are in the right. The tax is trifling,—in effect rather an exoneration than an imposition; three-fourths of the duty formerly payable on teas exported to America is taken off,—the place of collection is only shifted; instead of the retention of a shilling from the drawback here, it is three-pence custom paid in America."

9. All this, sir, is very true. But this is the very folly and mischief of the act. Incredible as it may seem, you know that you have deliberately thrown[27] away a large duty, which you held secure and quiet in your hands, for the vain hope of getting one three-fourths less, through every hazard, through certain litigation, and possibly through war.

10. Could anything be a subject of more just alarm to America, than to see you go out of the plain high-road of finance, and give up your most certain revenues and your clearest interest, merely for the sake of insulting the colonies? No man ever doubted that the commodity of tea could bear an imposition of three pence. But no commodity will bear three pence, or will bear a penny, when the general feelings of men are irritated, and two millions of people are resolved not to pay.

11. The feelings of the colonies were formerly the feelings of Great Britain. Theirs were formerly the feelings of Mr. Hampden, when called upon for the payment of twenty shillings. Would twenty shillings have ruined Mr. Hampden's fortune? No! but the payment of half twenty shillings, on the principle it was demanded, would have made him a slave. It is the weight of that preamble, of which you are so fond, and not the weight of the duty, that the Americans are unable and unwilling to bear.

12. It is, then, sir, upon the principle of this measure, and nothing else, that we are at issue. It is a principle of political expediency. Your act of 1767 asserts that it is expedient to raise a revenue in America;[28] your act of 1769, which takes away that revenue, contradicts the act of 1767, and by something much stronger than words, asserts that it is not expedient. It is a reflection upon your wisdom to persist in a solemn parliamentary declaration of the expediency of any object, for which, at the same time, you make no provision.

13. And pray, sir, let not this circumstance escape you,—it is very material,—that the preamble of this act which we wish to repeal, is not declaratory of a right, as some gentlemen seem to argue it: it is only a recital of the expediency of a certain exercise of right supposed already to have been asserted; an exercise you are now contending for by ways and means which you confess, though they were obeyed, to be utterly insufficient for their purpose. You are, therefore, at this moment in the awkward situation of fighting for a phantom,—a quiddity,—a thing that wants not only a substance, but even a name,—for a thing which is neither abstract right nor profitable enjoyment.

14. They tell you, sir, that your dignity is tied to it. I know not how it happens, but this dignity of yours is a terrible incumbrance to you; for it has of late been ever at war with your interest, your equity, and every idea of your policy. Show the thing you contend for to be reason, show it to be common sense, show it to be the means of attaining some useful end, and then I am content to allow it what dignity you please. But[29] what dignity is derived from the perseverance in absurdity is more than ever I could discern.

15. The honorable gentleman has said well, that this subject does not stand as it did formerly. Oh, certainly not! Every hour you continue on this ill-chosen ground, your difficulties thicken around you; and therefore my conclusion is, remove from a bad position as quickly as you can. The disgrace, and the necessity of yielding, both of them, grow upon you every hour of your delay.

Edmund Burke.


My heart leaps up when I behold
A rainbow in the sky:
So was it when my life began,
So is it now I am a man,
So be it when I shall grow old
Or let me die!
The Child is father of the Man:
And I could wish my days to be
Bound each to each by natural piety.



Act III. Scene II.

Ros. [Aside to Celia.] I will speak to him like a saucy lackey and under that habit play the knave with him. Do you hear, forester?

Orl. Very well: what would you?

Ros. I pray you, what is't o'clock?

Orl. You should ask me what time o' day: there's no clock in the forest.

Ros. Then there is no true lover in the forest; else sighing every minute and groaning every hour would detect the lazy foot of Time as well as a clock.

Orl. And why not the swift foot of Time? had not that been as proper?

Ros. By no means, sir: Time travels in divers paces with divers persons. I'll tell you who Time ambles withal, who Time trots withal, who Time gallops withal, and who he stands still withal.

Orl. I prithee, who doth he trot withal?

Ros. Marry, he trots hard with a young maid between the contract of her marriage and the day it is solemniz'd; if the interim be but a se'nnight, Time's pace is so hard that it seems the length of seven years.

Orl. Who ambles Time withal?

Ros. With a priest that lacks Latin and a rich man that hath not the gout, for the one sleeps easily because he cannot study, and the other lives merrily because he[31] feels no pain, the one lacking the burden of lean and wasteful learning, the other knowing no burden of heavy tedious penury; these Time ambles withal.

Orl. Who doth he galop withal?

Ros. With a thief to the gallows; for though he go as softly as foot can fall, he thinks himself too soon there.

Orl. Who stays it still withal?

Ros. With lawyers in the vacation; for they sleep between term and term, and then they perceive not how Time moves.

Orl. Where dwell you, pretty youth?

Ros. With this shepherdess, my sister; here in the skirts of the forest, like fringe upon a petticoat.

Orl. Are you native of this place?

Ros. As the cony that you see dwell where she is kindled.

Orl. Your accent is something finer than you could purchase in so remov'd a dwelling.

Ros. I have been told so of many: but indeed an old religious uncle of mine taught me to speak, who was in his youth an inland man; one that knew courtship too well, for there he fell in love. I have heard him read many lectures against it, and I thank God I am not a woman, to be touch'd with so many giddy offences as he hath generally tax'd their whole sex withal.

Orl. Can you remember any of the principal evils laid to the charge of women?[32]

Ros. There were none principal; they were all like one another as half-pence are, every one fault seeming monstrous till his fellow-fault came to match it.

Orl. I prithee, recount some of them.

Ros. No, I will not cast away my physic but on those that are sick. There is a man haunts the forest, that abuses our young plants with carving Rosalind on their barks; hangs odes upon hawthorns and elegies on brambles, all, forsooth, deifying the name of Rosalind: if I could meet that fancy-monger, I would give him some good counsel, for he seems to have the quotidian of love upon him.

Orl. I am he that is so love-shak'd: I pray you, tell me your remedy.

Ros. There is none of my uncle's marks upon you: he taught me how to know a man in love; in which cage of rushes, I am sure, you are not prisoner.

Orl. What were his marks?

Ros. A lean cheek, which you have not; a blue eye, and sunken, which you have not; an unquestionable spirit, which you have not; a beard neglected, which you have not; but I pardon you for that, for simply your having in beard is a younger brother's revenue: then your hose should be ungarter'd, your bonnet unbanded, your sleeve unbutton'd, your shoe unti'd and every thing about you demonstrating a careless desolation; but you are no such man; you are rather point-device in your[33] accoutrements, as loving yourself than seeming the lover of any other.

Orl. Fair youth, I would I could make thee believe I love.

Ros. Me believe it? you may as soon make her that you love believe it; which, I warrant, she is apter to do than to confess she does: that is one of the points in the which women still give the lie to their consciences. But, in good sooth, are you he that hangs the verses on the trees, wherein Rosalind is so admired?

Orl. I swear to thee, youth, by the white hand of Rosalind, I am that he, that unfortunate he.

Ros. But are you so much in love as your rhymes speak?

Orl. Neither rhyme nor reason can express how much.

Ros. Love is merely a madness; and, I tell you, deserves as well a dark house and a whip as madmen do; and the reason why they are not so punish'd and cured is, that the lunacy is so ordinary that the whippers are in love too. Yet I profess curing it by counsel.

Orl. Did you ever cure any so?

Ros. Yes, one; and in this manner. He was to imagine me his love, his mistress; and I set him every day to woo me: at which time would I, being but a moonish youth, be effeminate, changeable, longing and liking, proud, fantastical, apish, shallow, inconstant, full of tears, full of smiles, for every passion something[34] and for no passion truly any thing, as boys and women are for the most part cattle of this colour; would now like him, now loathe him; then entertain him, then forswear him; now weep for him, then spit at him; that I drave my suitor from his mad humour of love to a living humour of madness; which was, to forswear the full stream of the world, and to live in a nook merely monastic. And thus I cur'd him; and this way will I take upon me to wash your liver as clean as a sound sheep's heart, that there shall not be one spot of love in't.

Orl. I would not be cured, youth.

Ros. I would cure you, if you would but call me Rosalind, and come every day to my cote and woo me.

Orl. Now, by the faith of my love, I will: tell me where it is.

Ros. Go with me to it, and I'll show it you: and by the way you shall tell me where in the forest you live. Will you go?

Orl. With all my heart, good youth.

Ros. Nay, you must call me Rosalind. Come, sister, will you go?




Out of the north the wild news came,
Far flashing on its wings of flame,
Swift as the boreal light which flies
At midnight through the startled skies.
And there was tumult in the air,
The fife's shrill note, the drum's loud beat,
And through the wide land everywhere
The answering tread of hurrying feet;
While the first oath of Freedom's gun
Came on the blast from Lexington;
And Concord, roused, no longer tame,
Forgot her old baptismal name,
Made bare her patriot arm of power,
And swelled the discord of the hour.
Within its shade of elm and oak
The church of Berkley Manor stood;
There Sunday found the rural folk,
And some esteemed of gentle blood.
In vain their feet with loitering tread
Passed 'mid the graves where rank is naught;
All could not read the lesson taught
In that republic of the dead.
How sweet the hour of Sabbath talk,
The vale with peace and sunshine full
Where all the happy people walk,
Decked in their homespun flax and wool!
Where youth's gay hats with blossoms bloom,
And every maid with simple art,
Wears on her breast, like her own heart,
A bud whose depths are all perfume;
While every garment's gentle stir
Is breathing rose and lavender.
The pastor came; his snowy locks
Hallowed his brow of thought and care;
And calmly, as shepherds lead their flocks,
He led into the house of prayer.
The pastor rose; the prayer was strong;
The psalm was warrior David's song;
The text, a few short words of might,—
"The Lord of hosts shall arm the right!"
[37] V.
He spoke of wrongs too long endured,
Of sacred rights to be secured;
Then from his patriot tongue of flame
The startling words for Freedom came.
The stirring sentences he spake,
Compelled the heart to glow or quake,
And, rising on his theme's broad wing,
And grasping in his nervous hand
The imaginary battle-brand,
In face of death he dared to fling
Defiance to a tyrant king.
Even as he spoke, his frame, renewed
In eloquence of attitude,
Rose, as it seemed, a shoulder higher;
Then swept his kindling glance of fire
From startled pew to breathless choir;
When suddenly his mantle wide
His hands impatient flung aside.
And, lo! he met their wondering eyes
Complete in all a warrior's guise.
A moment there was awful pause,—
When Berkley cried, "Cease, traitor! cease!
God's temple is the house of peace!"
The other shouted, "Nay, not so,
When God is with our righteous cause;[38]
His holiest places then are ours,
His temples are our forts and towers,
That frown upon the tyrant foe;
In this, the dawn of Freedom's day,
There is a time to fight and pray!"
And now before the open door—
The warrior priest had ordered so—
The enlisting trumpet's sudden roar
Rang through the chapel, o'er and o'er,
Its long reverberating blow,
So loud and clear, it seemed the ear
Of dusty death must wake and hear.
And there the startling drum and fife
Fired the living with fiercer life;
While overhead, with wild increase,
Forgetting its ancient toll of peace,
The great bell swung as ne'er before:
It seemed as it would never cease;
And every word its ardor flung
From off its jubilant iron tongue
Was, "War! War! War!"
"Who dares"—this was the patriot's cry,
As striding from the desk he came,—
"Come out with me, in Freedom's name
For her to live, for her to die?"
A hundred hands flung up reply,
A hundred voices answered "I!"

T. B. Read.


Cassius. That you have wronged me doth appear in this:
You have condemned and noted Lucius Pella,
For taking bribes here of the Sardians;
Wherein, my letters (praying on his side,
Because I knew the man) were slighted off.
Brutus. You wronged yourself, to write in such a case.
Cas. At such a time as this, it is not meet
That every nice offence should bear its comment.
Bru. Let me tell you, Cassius, you yourself
Are much condemned to have an itching palm;
To sell and mart your offices for gold,
To undeservers.
Cas. I an itching palm?
You know that you are Brutus that speak this,
Or, by the gods, this speech were else your last.
Bru. The name of Cassius honors this corruption,
And chastisement doth therefore hide its head.
Cas. Chastisement?
Bru. Remember March, the ides of March remember!
Did not great Julius bleed for justice's sake?
What villain touched his body, that did stab,
And not for justice?—What! shall one of us,
That struck the foremost man of all this world,
But for supporting robbers;—shall we now
Contaminate our fingers with base bribes?
And sell the mighty space of our large honors
For so much trash as may be grasped thus?[40]
I had rather be a dog, and bay the moon,
Than such a Roman.
Cas. Brutus, bay not me:
I'll not endure it. You forget yourself,
To hedge me in: I am a soldier, I,
Older in practice, abler than yourself
To make conditions.
Bru. Go to; you're not, Cassius.
Cas. I am.
Bru. I say you are not.
Cas. Urge me no more: I shall forget myself:
Have mind upon your health: tempt me no further.
Bru. Away, slight man!
Cas. Is't possible!
Bru. Hear me, for I will speak.
Must I give way and room to your rash choler?
Shall I be frighted when a madman stares?
Cas. Must I endure all this?
Bru. All this? Ay, more! Fret till your proud heart break.
Go, show your slaves how choleric you are,
And make your bondmen tremble. Must I budge?
Must I observe you? Must I stand and crouch
Under your testy humor?
You shall digest the venom of your spleen,
Though it do split you: for, from this day forth,
I'll use you for my mirth; yea, for my laughter,
When you are waspish.
Cas. Is it come to this?
Bru. You say you are a better soldier;
Let it appear so; make your vaunting true,
And it shall please me well. For mine own part,
I shall be glad to learn of noble men.[41]
Cas. You wrong me every way; you wrong me, Brutus;
I said an elder soldier, not a better.
Did I say better?
Bru. If you did I care not.
Cas. When Cæsar lived, he durst not thus have moved me.
Bru. Peace, peace! you durst not so have tempted him!
Cas. I durst not?
Bru. No.
Cas. What! Durst not tempt him?
Bru. For your life you durst not.
Cas. Do not presume too much upon my love;
I may do that I shall be sorry for.
Bru. You have done that which you should be sorry for.
There is no terror, Cassius, in your threats!
For I am armed so strong in honesty,
That they pass by me as the idle wind,
Which I respect not. I did send to you
For certain sums of gold, which you denied me:—
For I can raise no money by vile means:
I had rather coin my heart,
And drop my blood for drachmas, than to wring
From the hard hands of peasants their vile trash
By any indirection. I did send
To you for gold to pay my legions;
Which you denied me.
Was that done like Cassius?
Should I have answered Caius Cassius so?
When Marcus Brutus grows so covetous,
To lock such rascal counters from his friends,[42]
Be ready, gods, with all your thunderbolts;
Dash him to pieces!
Cas. I denied you not.
Bru. You did.
Cas. I did not: He was but a fool
That brought my answer back.—Brutus hath rived my heart,
A friend should bear a friend's infirmities;
But Brutus makes mine greater than they are.
Bru. I do not, till you practice them on me.
Cas. You love me not.
Bru. I do not like your faults.
Cas. A friendly eye could never see such faults.
Bru. A flatterer's would not, though they do appear
As huge as high Olympus.
Cas. Come, Antony, and young Octavius, come!
Revenge yourselves alone on Cassius:
For Cassius is a-weary of the world—
Hated by one he loves; braved by his brother;
Checked like a bondman; all his faults observed,
Set in a note-book, learned, and conned by rote,
To cast into my teeth.
O, I could weep
My spirit from my eyes!—There is my dagger,
And here my naked breast; within, a heart
Dearer than Plutus' mine, richer than gold:
If that thou be'st a Roman, take it forth:
I, that denied thee gold, will give my heart.
Strike, as thou didst at Cæsar; for I know,
Then thou didst hate him worst, thou lovedst him better
Than ever thou lovedst Cassius.[43]
Bru. Sheath your dagger;
Be angry when you will, it shall have scope:
Do what you will, dishonor shall be humor.
O Cassius, you are yoked with a lamb,
That carries anger, as the flint bears fire;
Who, much enforced, shows a hasty spark,
And straight is cold again.
Cas. Hath Cassius lived
To be but mirth and laughter to his Brutus,
When grief and blood ill-tempered vexeth him?
Bru. When I spoke that, I was ill-tempered too.
Cas. Do you confess so much? Give me your hand
Bru. And my heart, too.
Cas. O Brutus!
Bru. What's the matter?
Cas. Have you not love enough to bear with me,
When that rash humor which my mother gave me,
Makes me forgetful?
Bru. Yes, Cassius; and from henceforth,
When you are over-earnest with your Brutus,
He'll think your mother chides, and leave you so.



Come, see the Dolphin's anchor forged; 'tis at a white heat now;
The bellows ceased, the flames decreased; though on the forge's brow[44]
The little flames still fitfully play through the sable mound;
And fitfully you still may see the grim smiths ranking round,
All clad in leathern panoply, their broad hands only bare;
Some rest upon their sledges here, some work the windlass there.
The windlass strains the tackle chains, the black mound heaves below,
And red and deep a hundred veins burst out at every throe;
It rises, roars, rends all outright—O Vulcan, what a glow!
'Tis blinding white, 'tis blasting bright; the high sun shines not so:
The high sun sees not, on the earth, such fiery, fearful show;
The roof-ribs swarth, the candent hearth, the ruddy, lurid row
Of smiths, that stand, an ardent band, like men before the foe;
As, quivering through his fleece of flame, the sailing monster slow
Sinks on the anvil—all about the faces fiery grow—
"Hurrah!" they shout—"leap out!—leap out!" bang, bang, the sledges go.
Leap out, leap out, my masters! leap out and lay on load!
Let's forge a goodly anchor, a bower, thick and broad
For a heart of oak is hanging on every blow, I bode,
And I see the good ship riding, all in a perilous road;
The low reef roaring on her lee, the roll of ocean poured
From stem to stern, sea after sea, the main-mast by the board;
The bulwarks down, the rudder gone, the boats stove at the chains;
But courage still, brave mariners, the bower yet remains,
And not an inch to flinch he deigns save when ye pitch sky-high.
Then moves his head, as though he said, "Fear nothing—here am I!"
Swing in your strokes in order, let foot and hand keep time,
Your blows make music sweeter far than any steeple's chime;
But while ye swing your sledges, sing, and let the burden be,
The anchor is the anvil king, and royal craftsmen we.
Strike in, strike in; the sparks begin to dull their rustling red;
Our hammers ring with sharper din, our work will soon be sped;
Our anchor soon must change his bed of fiery, rich array,
For a hammock at the roaring bows, or an oozy couch of clay;
Our anchor soon must change the lay of merry craftsmen here,
For the yeo-heave-o, and the heave away, and the sighing seaman's cheer.
In livid and obdurate gloom, he darkens down at last,
A shapely one he is and strong, as e'er from cat was cast.
A trusted and trustworthy guard, if thou had'st life like me,
What pleasures would thy toils reward beneath the deep-green sea!
O deep-sea-diver, who might then behold such sights as thou?
The hoary monster's palaces! methinks what joy 'twere now
To go plump, plunging down amid the assembly of the whales,
And feel the churned sea round me boil beneath their scourging tails![47]
Then deep in tanglewoods to fight the fierce sea-unicorn,
And send him foiled and bellowing back, for all his ivory horn;
To leave the subtle sworder-fish, of bony blade forlorn,
And for the ghastly grinning shark, to laugh his jaws to scorn.
O broad-armed fisher of the deep, whose sports can equal thine?
The Dolphin weighs a thousand tons, that tugs thy cable line;
And night by night 'tis thy delight, thy glory day by day,
Through sable sea and breaker white, the giant game to play;
But, shamer of our little sports, forgive the name I gave;
A fisher's joy is to destroy—thine office is to save.
O lodger in the sea-king's halls, couldst thou but understand
Whose be the white bones by thy side, or who that dripping band,
Slow swaying in the heaving wave, that round about thee bend,
With sounds like breakers in a dream, blessing their ancient friend;
O couldst thou know what heroes glide with larger steps round thee,
Thine iron side would swell with pride, thou'dst leap within the sea!
Give honor to their memories, who left the pleasant strand
To shed their blood so freely for the love of Fatherland—
Who left their chance of quiet age and grassy churchyard grave
So freely for a restless bed amid the tossing wave—
O, though our anchor may not be all I have fondly sung,
Honor him for their memory, whose bones he goes among!

S. Ferguson.


1. Sink or swim, live or die, survive or perish, I give my hand and my heart to this vote. It is true, indeed, that in the beginning we aimed not at independence. But there's a divinity which shapes our ends. The injustice of England has driven us to arms; and, blinded to her own interest for our good, she has obstinately persisted, till independence is now within our grasp. We have but to reach forth to it, and it is ours. Why, then, should we defer the Declaration?

2. Is any man so weak as now to hope for a reconciliation with England, which shall leave either safety to the country and its liberties, or safety to his own life and his own honor? Are not you, sir, who sit in that chair, is not he, our venerable colleague near you,[49] are you not both already the prescribed and predestined objects of punishment and of vengeance? Cut off from all hope of royal clemency, what are you, what can you be, while the power of England remains, but outlaws?

3. If we postpone independence, do we mean to carry on or give up the war? Do we mean to submit to the measures of Parliament, Boston Port Bill, and all? Do we mean to submit, and consent that we ourselves shall be ground to powder, and our country and its rights trodden down in the dust?

4. I know we do not mean to submit. We never shall submit. Do we intend to violate that most solemn obligation ever entered into by men, that plighting before God, of our sacred honor to Washington, when, putting him forth to incur the dangers of war, as well as the political hazards of the times, we promised to adhere to him, in every extremity, with our fortunes and our lives?

5. I know there is not a man here, who would not rather see a general conflagration sweep over the land, or an earthquake sink it, than one jot or tittle of that plighted faith fall to the ground. For myself, having, twelve months ago, in this place, moved you that George Washington be appointed commander of the forces raised, or to be raised, for the defence of American liberty, may my right hand forget her cunning, and my tongue cleave to the roof of my mouth, if I hesitate or waver in the support I give him.[50]

6. The war, then, must go on. We must fight it through. And if the war must go on, why put off longer the Declaration of Independence? That measure will strengthen us. It will give us character abroad. The nations will then treat with us, which they never can do while we acknowledge ourselves subjects in arms against our sovereign. Nay, I maintain that England herself will sooner treat for peace with us on the footing of independence, than consent, by repealing her acts, to acknowledge that her whole conduct towards us has been a course of injustice and oppression.

7. Her pride will be less wounded by submitting to that course of things which now predestinates our independence, than by yielding the points in controversy to her rebellious subjects. The former she would regard as the result of fortune; the latter she would feel as her own deep disgrace. Why then, why then, sir, do we not as soon as possible change this from a civil to a national war? And since we must fight it through, why not put ourselves in a state to enjoy all the benefits of victory, if we gain the victory?

8. If we fail, it can be no worse for us. But we shall not fail. The cause will raise up armies; the cause will create navies. The people, the people, if we are true to them, will carry us, and will carry themselves, gloriously through this struggle. I care not how fickle other people have been found. I know the people of these colonies, and I know that resistance to[51] British aggression is deep and settled in their hearts, and cannot be eradicated. Every colony, indeed, has expressed its willingness to follow, if we but take the lead.

9. Sir, the Declaration will inspire the people with increased courage. Instead of a long and bloody war for the restoration of privileges, for redress of grievances, for chartered immunities held under a British king, set before them the glorious object of entire independence and it will breathe into them anew the breath of life.

10. Read this Declaration at the head of the army; every sword will be drawn from its scabbard, and the solemn vow uttered, to maintain it, or to perish on the bed of honor. Publish it from the pulpit; religion will approve it, and the love of religious liberty will cling round it, resolved to stand with it, or fall with it. Send it to the public halls; proclaim it there; let them hear it who heard the first roar of the enemy's cannon; let them see it who saw their brothers and their sons fall on the field of Bunker Hill, and in the streets of Lexington and Concord, and the very walls will cry out in its support.

11. Sir, I know the uncertainty of human affairs, but I see, I see clearly through this day's business. You and I, indeed, may rue it. We may not live to the time when this Declaration shall be made good. We may die; die colonists; die slaves; die, it may be, ignominiously, and on the scaffold. Be it so. Be it so. If it be the pleasure of Heaven that my country shall require[52] the poor offering of my life, the victim shall be ready at the appointed hour of sacrifice, come when that hour may. But while I do live, let me have a country, or at least the hope of a country, and that a free country.

12. But whatever may be our fate, be assured, be assured that this Declaration will stand. It may cost treasure and it may cost blood; but it will stand, and it will richly compensate for both. Through the thick gloom of the present, I see the brightness of the future as the sun in heaven. We shall make this a glorious, an immortal day. When we are in our graves, our children will honor it. They will celebrate it with thanksgiving, with festivity, with bonfires, and illuminations. On its annual return, they will shed tears, copious, gushing tears, not of subjection and slavery, not of agony and distress, but of exultation, of gratitude, and of joy.

13. Sir, before God, I believe the hour is come. My judgment approves this measure, and my whole heart is in it. All that I have, and all that I am, and all that I hope in this life, I am now ready here to stake upon it; and I leave off as I began, that, live or die, survive or perish, I am for the Declaration. It is my living sentiment, and by the blessing of God it shall be my dying sentiment,—independence now, and INDEPENDENCE FOREVER!

Daniel Webster.


If life were caught by a clarionet,
And a wild heart throbbing in the reed,
Should thrill its joy and trill its fret,
And utter its heart in every deed,
Then would this breathing clarionet
Type what the poet fain would be;
For none o' the singers ever yet
Has wholly lived his minstrelsy;
Or clearly sung his true, true thought;
Or utterly bodied forth his life,
Or out of life and song has wrought
The perfect one of man and wife;
Or lived and sung, that Life and Song
Might each express the other's all,
Careless if life or art were long
Since both were one, to stand or fall.
So that the wonder struck the crowd,
Who shouted it about the land:
His song was only living aloud,
His work, a singing with his hand!

Sidney Lanier.


Pibroch of Donuil Dhu
Pibroch of Donuil
Wake thy wild voice anew,
Summon Clan Conuil.
Come away, come away,
Hark to the summons!
Come in your war-array,
Gentles and commons.
Come from deep glen, and
From mountain so rocky;
The war-pipe and pennon
Are at Inverlocky.
Come every hill-plaid, and
True heart that wears one,
Come every steel blade, and
Strong hand that bears one.
Leave untended the herd,
The flock without shelter;
Leave the corpse uninterr'd,
The bride at the altar;
Leave the deer, leave the steer,
Leave nets and barges:
Come with your fighting gear,
Broadswords and targes.
Come as the winds come, when
Forests are rended,
Come as the waves come, when
Navies are stranded:
Faster come, faster come,
Faster and faster,
Chief, vassal, page and groom,
Tenant and master.
Fast they come, fast they come;
See how they gather!
Wide waves the eagle plume
Blended with heather.
Cast your plaids, draw your blades,
Forward each man set!
Pibroch of Donuil Dhu
Knell for the onset!

Sir Walter Scott.


It seems a day
(I speak of one from many singled out)
One of those heavenly days that cannot die;
When, in the eagerness of boyish hope,
I left our cottage-threshold, sallying forth
With a huge wallet o'er my shoulders slung,[56]
A nutting-crook in hand; and turned my steps
Tow'rd some far-distant wood, a Figure quaint,
Tricked out in proud disguise of cast-off weeds
Which for that service had been husbanded,
By exhortation of my frugal Dame—
Motley accoutrement, of power to smile
At thorns, and brakes, and brambles,—and, in truth,
More ragged than need was!
O'er pathless rocks,
Through beds of matted fern, and tangled thickets,
Forcing my way, I came to one dear nook
Unvisited, where not a broken bough
Drooped with its withered leaves, ungracious sign
Of devastation; but the hazels rose
Tall and erect, with tempting clusters hung,
A virgin scene!—A little while I stood,
Breathing with such suppression of the heart
As joy delights in; and, with wise restraint
Voluptuous, fearless of a rival, eyed
The banquet;—or beneath the trees I sate
Among the flowers, and with the flowers I played;
A temper known to those, who, after long
And weary expectation, have been blest
With sudden happiness beyond all hope.
Perhaps it was a bower beneath whose leaves
The violets of five seasons re-appear
And fade, unseen by any human eye;[57]
Where fairy water-breaks do murmur on
Forever; and I saw the sparkling foam,
And—with my cheek on one of those green stones
That, fleeced with moss, under the shady trees,
Lay round me, scattered like a flock of sheep—
I heard the murmur and the murmuring sound,
In that sweet mood when pleasure loves to pay
Tribute to ease; and, of its joy secure,
The heart luxuriates with indifferent things,
Wasting its kindliness on stocks and stones,
And on the vacant air.
Then up I rose,
And dragged to earth both branch and bough, with crash
And merciless ravage; and the shady nook
Of hazels, and the green and mossy bower,
Deformed and sullied, patiently gave up
Their quiet being: and, unless I now
Confound my present feelings with the past;
Ere from the mutilated bower I turned
Exulting, rich beyond the wealth of kings,
I felt a sense of pain when I beheld
The silent trees, and saw the intruding sky—
Then, dearest Maiden, move along these shades
In gentleness of heart; with gentle hand
Touch—for there is a spirit in the woods.

William Wordsworth.


From Mill on the Floss.
Part I.

1. The Dodsons were certainly a handsome family, and Mrs. Glegg was not the least handsome of the sisters. As she sat in Mrs. Tulliver's arm-chair, no impartial observer could have denied that for a woman of fifty she had a very comely face and figure. It is true she despised the advantages of costume, for though, as she often observed, no woman had better clothes, it was not her way to wear her new things out before her old ones. Other women, if they liked, might have their best thread-lace in every wash; but when Mrs. Glegg died, it would be found that she had better lace laid by in the right-hand drawer of her wardrobe, in the Spotted Chamber, than ever Mrs. Wooll of St. Ogg's had bought in her life, although Mrs. Wooll wore her lace before it was paid for.

2. So of her curled fronts: to look out on the week-day world from under a crisp and glossy front, would be to introduce a most dreamlike and unpleasant confusion between the sacred and the secular. Occasionally, indeed, Mrs. Glegg wore one of her third-best fronts on a week-day visit, but not at a sister's house; especially not at Mrs. Tulliver's, who, since her marriage, had hurt her sisters' feelings greatly by wearing her own hair. But Bessy was always weak![59]

3. So if Mrs. Glegg's front to-day was more fuzzy and lax than usual, she had a design under it: she intended the most pointed and cutting allusion to Mrs. Tulliver's bunches of blond curls, separated from each other by a due wave of smoothness on each side of the parting. Mrs. Tulliver had shed tears several times at sister Glegg's unkindness on the subject of these unmatronly curls, but the consciousness of looking the handsomer for them, naturally administered support.

4. Mrs. Glegg chose to wear her bonnet in the house to-day—untied and tilted slightly, of course—a frequent practice of hers when she was on a visit, and happened to be in a severe humor: she didn't know what draughts there might be in strange houses. For the same reason she wore a small sable tippet, which reached just to her shoulders, and was very far from meeting across her well-formed chest, while her long neck was protected by a chevaux-de-frise of miscellaneous frilling. One would need to be learned in the fashions of those times to know how far in the rear of them Mrs. Glegg's slate-colored silk gown must have been; but from certain constellations of small yellow spots upon it, and a mouldy odor about it suggestive of a damp clothes-chest, it was probable that it belonged to a stratum of garments just old enough to have come recently into wear.

5. Mrs. Glegg held her large gold watch in her hand[60] with the many-doubled chain round her fingers, and observed to Mrs. Tulliver, who had just returned from a visit to the kitchen, that whatever it might be by other people's clocks and watches, it was gone half-past twelve by hers.

6. "I don't know what ails sister Pullet," she continued. "It used to be the way in our family for one to be as early as another,—I'm sure it was so in my poor father's time,—and not for one sister to sit half an hour before the others came. But if the ways o' the family are altered, it shan't be my fault—I'll never be the one to come into a house when all the rest are going away. I wonder at sister Deane—she used to be more like me. But if you'll take my advice, Bessy, you'll put the dinner forrard a bit, sooner than put it back, because folks are late as ought to ha' known better."

7. "Oh dear, there's no fear but what they'll be all here in time, sister," said Mrs. Tulliver, in her mild-peevish tone. "The dinner won't be ready till half-past one. But if it's long for you to wait, let me fetch you a cheesecake and a glass o' wine."

"Well, Bessy!" said Mrs. Glegg, with a bitter smile, and a scarcely perceptible toss of her head, "I should ha' thought you'd known your own sister better. I never did eat between meals, and I'm not going to begin. Not but what I hate that nonsense of having your dinner at half-past one, when you might have it[61] at one. You was never brought up in that way, Bessy."

8. "Why, Jane, what can I do? Mr. Tulliver doesn't like his dinner before two o'clock, but I put it half an hour earlier because o' you."

"Yes, yes, I know how it is with husbands—they're for putting everything off—they'll put the dinner off till after tea, if they've got wives as are weak enough to give in to such work; but it's a pity for you, Bessy, as you haven't got more strength o' mind. It'll be well if your children don't suffer for it. And I hope you've not gone and got a great dinner for us. A boiled joint, as you could make broth of for the kitchen," Mrs. Glegg added, in a tone of emphatic protest, "and a plain pudding, with a spoonful o' sugar, and no spice, 'ud be far more becoming."

9. With sister Glegg in this humor, there was a cheerful prospect for the day. Mrs. Tulliver never went the length of quarrelling with her, but this point of the dinner was a tender one, and not at all new, so that she could make the same answer she had often made before.

"Mr. Tulliver says he always will have a good dinner for his friends while he can pay for it," she said, "and he's a right to do as he likes in his own house, sister."

10. "Well, Bessy, I can't leave your children enough out o' my savings, to keep 'em from ruin. And you[62] mustn't look to having any o' Mr. Glegg's money, for it's well if I don't go first—he comes of a long-lived family; and if he was to die and leave me well for my life, he'd tie all the money up to go back to his own kin."

11. The sound of wheels while Mrs. Glegg was speaking was an interruption highly welcome to Mrs. Tulliver, who hastened out to receive sister Pullet—it must be sister Pullet, because the sound was that of a four-wheel.

Part II.

1. Sister Pullet was in tears when the one-horse chaise stopped before Mrs. Tulliver's door, and it was apparently requisite that she should shed a few more before getting out, for though her husband and Mrs. Tulliver stood ready to support her, she sat still and shook her head sadly, as she looked through her tears at the vague distance. "Why, whativer is the matter, sister?" said Mrs. Tulliver.

2. There was no reply but a further shake of the head, as Mrs. Pullet slowly rose and got down from the chaise, not without casting a glance at Mr. Pullet to see that he was guarding her handsome silk dress from injury. Mr. Pullet was a small man with a high nose, small twinkling eyes, and thin lips, in a fresh-looking suit of black and a white cravat, that seemed[63] to have been tied very tight on some higher principle than that of mere personal ease.

3. It is a pathetic sight and a striking example of the complexity introduced into the emotions by a high state of civilization—the sight of a fashionably drest female in grief. Perceiving that the tears are hurrying fast, she unpins her strings and throws them languidly backward—a touching gesture, indicative, even in the deepest gloom, of the hope in future dry moments when cap-strings will once more have a charm.

4. Mrs. Pullet brushed each doorpost with great nicety, about the latitude of her shoulders (at that period a woman was truly ridiculous to an instructed eye if she did not measure a yard and a half across the shoulders), and having done that, sent the muscles of her face in quest of fresh tears as she advanced into the parlor where Mrs. Glegg was seated.

5. "Well, sister, you're late; what's the matter?" said Mrs. Glegg, rather sharply, as they shook hands.

Mrs. Pullet sat down—lifting up her mantle carefully behind, before she answered—

"She's gone. Died the day before yesterday, an' her legs was as thick as my body," she added, with deep sadness, after a pause. "They'd tapped her no end o' times, and the water—they say you might ha' swum in it, if you'd liked."

6. "Well, Sophy, it's a mercy she's gone, then, whoever she may be," said Mrs. Glegg, with the promptitude[64] and emphasis of a mind naturally clear and decided; "but I can't think who you're talking of, for my part."

"But I know," said Mrs. Pullet, sighing and shaking her head; "and there isn't another such a dropsy in the parish. I know as its old Mrs. Sutton o' the Twentylands."

"Well, she's no kin o' yours, nor much acquaintance as I've ever heared of," said Mrs. Glegg, who always cried just as much as was proper when anything happened to her own "kin," but not on other occasions.

7. "She said to me, when I went to see her last Christmas, she said, 'Mrs. Pullet, if ever you have the dropsy, you'll think o' me.' She did say so," added Mrs. Pullet, beginning to cry bitterly again; "those were her very words. And she's to be buried o' Saturday, and Pullet's bid to the funeral."

"Sophy," said Mrs. Glegg, unable any longer to contain her spirit of rational remonstrance—"Sophy, I wonder at you, fretting and injuring your health about people as don't belong to you. Your poor father never did so, nor your aunt Frances neither, nor any o' the family as I ever heard of. You couldn't fret no more than this, if we'd heared as our cousin Abbott had died sudden without making his will."

8. Mrs. Pullet was silent, having to finish her crying, and rather flattered than indignant at being upbraided for crying too much.[65]

"Ah!" she sighed, shaking her head at the idea that there were but few who could enter fully into her experiences. "Sister, I may as well go and take my bonnet off now. Did you see as the cap-box was put out?" she added, turning to her husband.

Mr. Pullet, by an unaccountable lapse of memory, had forgotten it, and hastened out, with a stricken conscience, to remedy the omission.

9. "They'll bring it up-stairs, sister," said Mrs. Tulliver, wishing to go at once, for she was fond of going up-stairs with her sister Pullet, and looking thoroughly at her cap before she put it on her head, and discussing millinery in general. This was part of Bessy's weakness, that stirred Mrs. Glegg's sisterly compassion: Bessy went far too well drest, considering.

But when Mrs. Pullet was alone with Mrs. Tulliver up-stairs, the remarks were naturally to the disadvantage of Mrs. Glegg, and they agreed, in confidence, that there was no knowing what sort of fright sister Jane would come out next.

George Eliot.


The Cock is crowing,
The stream is flowing,
The small birds twitter,
The lake doth glitter,
The green field sleeps in the sun;
The oldest and youngest
Are at work with the strongest;
The cattle are grazing,
Their heads never raising;
There are forty feeding like one!
Like an army defeated
The snow hath retreated,
And now doth fare ill
On the top of the bare hill;
The ploughboy is whooping—anon—anon:
There's joy in the mountains;
There's life in the fountains;
Small clouds are sailing,
Blue sky prevailing;
The rain is over and gone!

William Wordsworth.





1. We have cause for honest complacency, that when the distant citizen of our own republic, when the stranger from foreign lands, inquires for the spots where the noble blood of the Revolution began to flow, where the first battle of that great and glorious contest was fought, he is guided through the villages of Middlesex, to the plains of Lexington and Concord. It is a commemoration of our soil, to which ages, as they pass, will add dignity and interest; till the names of Lexington and Concord in the annals of freedom, will stand by the side of the most honorable names in Roman or Grecian story.

2. It was one of those great days, one of those elemental occasions in the world's affairs, when the people rise and act for themselves. Some organization and preparation had been made; but from the nature of the case, with scarce any effect on the events of that day.[68]

3. It may be doubted whether there was an efficient order given, the whole day, to any body of men as large as a regiment. It was the people, in their first capacity, as citizens and as freemen, starting from their beds at midnight, from their firesides and from their fields, to take their own cause into their own hands.

4. Such a spectacle is the height of the moral sublime; when the want of everything is fully made up by the spirit of the cause, and the soul within stands in place of discipline, organization, and resources. In the prodigious efforts of a veteran army, beneath the dazzling splendor of their array, there is something revolting to the reflective mind.

5. The ranks are filled with the desperate, the mercenary, the depraved; an iron slavery, by the name of subordination, merges the free will of one hundred thousand men in the unqualified despotism of one; the humanity, mercy, and remorse, which scarce ever desert the individual bosom, are sounds without a meaning to that fearful, ravenous, irrational monster of prey, a mercenary army. It is hard to say who are most to be commiserated, the wretched people on whom it is let loose, or the still more wretched people whose substance has been sucked out to nourish it into strength and fury.

6. But in the efforts of the people,—of the people struggling for their rights, moving, not in organized, disciplined masses, but in their spontaneous action, man[69] for man, and heart for heart,—there is something glorious. They can then move forward without orders, act together without combination, and brave the flaming lines of battle, without intrenchments to cover or walls to shield them.

7. No dissolute camp has worn off from the feelings of the youthful soldier the freshness of that home, where his mother and his sister sit waiting, with tearful eyes and aching hearts, to hear good news from the wars; no long service in the ranks of a conqueror has turned the veteran's heart into marble; their valor springs not from recklessness, from habit, from indifference to the preservation of a life knit by no pledges to the life of others. But in the strength and spirit of the cause alone they act, they contend, they bleed. In this they conquer.

8. The people always conquer. They always must conquer. Armies may be defeated, kings may be overthrown, and new dynasties imposed, by foreign arms, on an ignorant and slavish race, that care not in what language the covenant of their subjection runs, nor in whose name the deed of their barter and sale is made out. But the people never invade; and, when they rise against the invader, are never subdued.

9. If they are driven from the plains, they fly to the mountains. Steep rocks and everlasting hills are their castles; the tangled, pathless thicket their palisado, and God is their ally. Now he overwhelms the hosts[70] of their enemies beneath his drifting mountains of sand; now he buries them beneath a falling atmosphere of polar snows; he lets loose his tempests on their fleets; he puts a folly into their counsels, a madness into the hearts of their leaders; and never gave, and never will give, a final triumph over a virtuous and gallant people, resolved to be free.

Edward Everett.


Here are old trees—tall oaks and gnarled pines—
That stream with gray-green mosses; here the ground
Was never trenched by spade, and flowers spring up
Unsown, and die ungathered.
It is sweet
To linger here, among the flitting birds
And leaping squirrels, wandering brooks, and winds
That shake the leaves, and scatter as they pass,
A fragrance from the cedars, thickly set
With pale blue berries. In these peaceful shades—
Peaceful, unpruned, immeasurably old—
My thoughts go up the long, dim path of years,
Back to the earliest days of liberty.
O Freedom, thou art not, as poets dream,
A fair young girl, with light and delicate limbs,
And wavy tresses, gushing from the cap
With which the Roman master crowned his slave
When he took off the gyves. A bearded man,
Armed to the teeth, art thou; one mailed hand
Grasps the broad shield, and one the sword; thy brow,
Glorious in beauty though it be, is scarred
With tokens of old wars; thy massive limbs
Are strong with struggling.
Power at thee has launched
His bolts, and with his lightnings smitten thee;
They could not quench the life thou hast from Heaven.
Merciless power has dug thy dungeon deep,
And his swart armorers, by a thousand fires,
Have forged thy chain; yet while he deems thee bound,
The links are shivered, and the prison walls
Fall outward; terribly thou springest forth,
As springs the flame above a burning pile
And shoutest to the nations, who return
Thy shoutings, while the pale oppressor flies.
Thy birthright was not given by human hands;
Thou wert twin-born with man. In pleasant fields,
While yet our race was few, thou sat'st with him,
To tend the quiet flock, and watch the stars,
And teach the reed to utter simple airs.[72]
Thou, by his side, amid the tangled wood,
Didst war upon the panther and the wolf,
His only foes; and thou with him didst draw
The earliest furrows on the mountain-side,
Soft with the deluge.
Tyranny himself,
Thy enemy, although of reverend look,
Hoary with many years, and far obeyed,
Is later born than thou; and as he meets
The grave defiance of thine elder eye,
The usurper trembles in his fastnesses.
O, not yet
Mayst thou unbrace thy corselet, nor lay by
Thy sword; nor yet, O Freedom, close thy lids
In slumber; for thine enemy never sleeps,
And thou must watch and combat till the day
Of the new earth and heaven.
But wouldst thou rest
Awhile from tumult and the frauds of men,
These old and friendly solitudes invite
Thy visit. They, while yet the forest trees
Were young upon the unviolated earth,
And yet the moss-stains on the rock were new,
Beheld thy glorious childhood, and rejoiced.

William Cullen Bryant.



1. I hear much said of patriotism, appeals to patriotism, transports of patriotism. Gentlemen, why prostitute this noble world? Is it so very magnanimous to give up a part of your income in order to save your whole property? This is very simple arithmetic; and he that hesitates, deserves contempt rather than indignation.

2. Yes, gentlemen, it is to your immediate self-interest, to your most familiar notions of prudence and policy that I now appeal. I say not to you now, as heretofore, beware how you give the world the first example of an assembled nation untrue to the public faith.

3. I ask you not, as heretofore, what right you have to freedom, or what means of maintaining it, if, at your first step in administration, you outdo in baseness all the old and corrupt governments. I tell you, that unless you prevent this catastrophe, you will all be involved in the general ruin; and that you are yourselves the persons most deeply interested in making the sacrifices which the government demands of you.

4. I exhort you, then, most earnestly, to vote these extraordinary supplies; and God grant they may prove sufficient! Vote, then, I beseech you; for, even if you doubt the expediency of the means, you know perfectly[74] well that the supplies are necessary, and that you are incapable of raising them in any other way. Vote them at once, for the crisis does not admit of delay; and, if it occurs, we must be responsible for the consequences.

5. Beware of asking for time. Misfortune accords it never. While you are lingering, the evil day will come upon you. Why, gentlemen, it is but a few days since, that upon occasion of some foolish bustle in the Palais Royal, some ridiculous insurrection that existed nowhere but in the heads of a few weak or designing individuals, we were told with emphasis, "Catiline is at the gates of Rome, and yet we deliberate."

6. We know, gentlemen, that this was all imagination. We are far from being at Rome; nor is there any Catiline at the gates of Paris. But now are we threatened with a real danger; bankruptcy, national bankruptcy, is before you; it threatens to swallow up your persons, your property, your honor,—and yet you deliberate.



1. These boys congregated every autumn about a certain easterly fisher-village, where they tasted in a high degree the glory of existence. The place was created seemingly on purpose for the diversion of young gentlemen. A street or two of houses, mostly red and many of them tiled; a number of fine trees clustered[75] about the manse and the kirkyard, and turning the chief street into a shady alley; many little gardens more than usually bright with flowers; nets a-drying, and fisher-wives scolding in the backward parts; a smell of fish, a genial smell of seaweed; whiffs of blowing sand at the street corners; shops with golf-balls and bottled lollipops; such, as well as memory serves me, were the ingredients of the town.

2. These, you are to conceive posted on a spit between two sandy bays, and sparsely flanked with villas—enough for the boys to lodge in with their subsidiary parents, not enough (not yet enough) to cocknify the scene; a haven in the rocks in front: in front of that, a file of gray islets; to the left, endless links and sand wreaths, a wilderness of hiding-holes, alive with popping rabbits and soaring gulls: to the right, a range of seaward crags, one rugged brow beyond another; the ruins of a mighty and ancient fortress on the brink of one; coves between—now charmed into sunshine quiet, now whistling with wind and clamorous with bursting surges; the dens and sheltered hollows redolent of thyme and southernwood, the air at the cliff's edge brisk and clean and pungent of the sea—in front of all, the Bass Rock, tilted seaward like a doubtful bather, the surf ringing it with white, the solan-geese hanging round its summit like a great and glittering smoke.

3. This choice piece of seaboard was sacred, besides,[76] to the wrecker; and the Bass, in the eye of fancy, still flew the colors of King James; and in the ear of fancy the arches of Tantallon still rang with horse-shoe iron, and echoed to the commands of Bell—the—Cat.

4. ... But what my memory dwells upon the most was a sport peculiar to the place, and indeed to a week or so of our two months' holiday there. Maybe it still flourishes in its native spot; for boys and their pastimes are swayed by periodic forces inscrutable to man; so that tops and marbles reappear in their due season, regular like the sun and moon; and the harmless art of knuckle-bones has seen the fall of the Roman empire and the rise of the United States.

5. It may still flourish in its native spot, but nowhere else, I am persuaded; for I tried myself to introduce it on Tweed-side, and was defeated lamentably; its charm being quite local, like a country wine that cannot be exported.

6. The idle manner of it was this: Toward the end of September, when school-time was drawing near and the nights were already black, we would begin to sally from our respective villas, each equipped with a tin bull's-eye lantern. The thing was so well known that it had worn a rut in the commerce of Great Britain; and the grocers, about the due time, began to garnish their windows with our particular brand of luminary. We wore them buckled to the waist upon a cricket belt, and over them, such was the rigour of the game,[77] a buttoned top-coat. They smelled noisomely of blistered tin; they never burned aright, though they would always burn our fingers; their use was naught; the pleasure of them merely fanciful; and yet a boy with a bull's-eye under his top-coat asked for nothing more.

7. The fishermen used lanterns about their boats, and it was from them, I suppose, that we had got the hint; but theirs were not bull's-eyes, nor did we ever play at being fishermen. The police carried them at their belts, and we had plainly copied them in that; yet we did not pretend to be policemen. Burglars, indeed, we may have had some haunting thoughts of; and we had certainly an eye to past ages when lanterns were more common, and to certain story-books in which we had found them to figure very largely. But take it for all in all, the pleasure of the thing was substantive, and to be a boy with a bull's-eye under his top-coat was good enough for us.

8. When two of these asses met, there would be an anxious "Have you got your lantern?" and a gratified "Yes!" That was the shibboleth, and very needful too; for, as it was the rule to keep our glory contained, none could recognize a lantern bearer, unless (like the pole-cat) by the smell. Four or five would sometimes climb into the belly of a ten-man lugger, with nothing but the thwarts above them—for the cabin was usually locked, or choose out some hollow of the links where the wind might whistle overhead. There the coats[78] would be unbuttoned and the bull's-eyes discovered; and in the chequering glimmer, under the huge windy hall of the night, and cheered by a rich steam of toasting tinware, these fortunate young gentlemen would crouch together in the cold sands of the links or on the scaly bilges of the fishing-boat, and delight themselves with inappropriate talk.

9. Woe is me that I may not give some specimens—some of their foresights of life, or deep inquiries into the rudiments of man and nature, these were so fiery and so innocent, they were so richly silly, so romantically young. But the talk at any rate was but a condiment; and these gatherings themselves only accidents in the career of the lantern bearer. The essence of this bliss was to walk by yourself in the black night; the slide shut, the top-coat buttoned; not a ray escaping, whether to conduct your footsteps or to make your glory public: a mere pillar of darkness in the dark; and all the while, deep down in the privacy of your fool's heart, to know you had a bull's-eye at your belt, and to exult and sing over the knowledge.

Robert Louis Stevenson.


Woe: lightly to part with one's soul as the sea with its foam!
Woe to Tarpeia, Tarpeia, daughter of Rome![79]
Lo, now it was night, with the moon looking chill as she went:
It was morn when the innocent stranger strayed into the tent.
The hostile Sabini were pleased, as one meshing a bird;
She sang for them there in the ambush: they smiled as they heard.
Her sombre hair purpled in gleams, as she leaned to the light;
All day she had idled and feasted, and now it was night.
The chief sat apart, heavy-browed, brooding elbow on knee;
The armlets he wore were thrice royal, and wondrous to see:
Exquisite artifice, work of barbaric design,
Frost's fixèd mimicry; orbic imaginings fine
In sevenfold coils: and in orient glimmer from them,
The variform voluble swinging of gem upon gem.
And the glory thereof sent fever and fire to her eye.
"I had never such trinkets!" she sighed,—like a lute was her sigh.
"Were they mine at the plea, were they mine for the token, all told,
Now the citadel sleeps, now my father the keeper is old,"[80]
"If I go by the way that I know, and thou followest hard,
If yet at the touch of Tarpeia the gates be unbarred?"
The chief trembled sharply for joy, then drew rein on his soul:
"Of all this arm beareth I swear I will cede thee the whole."
And up from the nooks of the camp, with hoarse plaudit outdealt,
The bearded Sabini glanced hotly, and vowed as they knelt,
Bare-stretching the wrists that bore also the glowing great boon:
"Yea! surely as over us shineth the lurid low moon,
"Not alone of our lord, but of each of us take what he hath!
Too poor is the guerdon, if thou wilt but show us the path!"
Her nostril upraised, like a fawn's on the arrowy air,
She sped, in a serpentine gleam to the precipice stair.
They climbed in her traces, they closed on their evil swift star:
She bent to the latches, and swung the huge portal ajar.
Repulsed where they passed her, half-tearful for wounded belief,[81]
"The bracelets!" she pleaded. Then faced her, the leonine chief,
And answered her: "Even as I promised, maid-merchant, I do."
Down from his dark shoulder the baubles he sullenly drew.
"This left arm shall nothing begrudge thee. Accept. Find it sweet.
Give, too, O my brothers!" The jewels he flung at her feet,
The jewels hard heavy; she stooped to them, flushing with dread,
But the shield he flung after: it clanged on her beautiful head.
Like the Apennine bells when the villagers' warnings begin,
Athwart the first lull broke the ominous din upon din;
With a "Hail, benefactress!" upon her they heaped in their zeal
Death: agate and iron; death: chrysoprase, beryl and steel.
'Neath the outcry of scorn, 'neath the sinewy tension and hurl,
The moaning died slowly, and still they massed over the girl[82]
A mountain of shields! and the gemmy hight tangle in links,
A torrent-like gush, pouring out on the grass from the chinks,
Pyramidal gold! the sumptuous monument won
By the deed they had loved her for, doing, and loathed her for, done.
Such was the wage that they paid her, such the acclaim:
All Rome was aroused with the thunder that buried her shame.
On surged the Sabini to battle. O you that aspire!
Tarpeia the traitor had fill of her woman's desire.
Woe: lightly to part with one's soul as the sea with its foam!
Woe to Tarpeia, Tarpeia, daughter of Rome!

Louise Imogen Guiney.


Hear the sledges with the bells—
Silver bells.
What a world of merriment their melody foretells!
How they tinkle, tinkle, tinkle,
In the icy air of night![83]
While the stars that oversprinkle
All the heavens, seem to twinkle
With a crystalline delight,
Keeping, time, time, time,
In a sort of Runic rhyme,
To the tintinnabulation that so musically wells
From the bells, bells, bells, bells,
Bells, bells, bells—
From the jingling and the tinkling of the bells.
Hear the mellow wedding bells,
Golden bells!
What a world of happiness their harmony foretells!
Through the balmy air of night
How they ring out their delight!
From the molten-golden notes,
All in tune,
What a liquid ditty floats
To the turtle dove that listens, while she gloats
On the moon!
Oh, from out the sounding cells,
What a gush of euphony voluminously wells!
How it swells,
How it dwells
On the Future! how it tells
Of the rapture that impels
To the swinging and the ringing
Of the bells, bells, bells,
Of the bells, bells, bells, bells,
Bells, bells, bells—
To the rhyming and the chiming of the bells!
Hear the loud alarum bells—
Brazen bells!
What a tale of terror now, their turbulency tells!
In the startled air of night
How they scream out their affright!
Too much horrified to speak,
They can only shriek, shriek,
Out of tune,
In a clamorous appealing to the mercy of the fire.
In a mad expostulation with the deaf and frantic fire,
Leaping higher, higher, higher,
With a desperate desire,
And a resolute endeavor
Now—now to sit, or never,
By the side of the pale-faced moon.
Oh, the bells, bells, bells!
What a tale their terror tells
Of despair!
How they clang, and clash, and roar!
What a horror they outpour
On the bosom of the palpitating air!
Yet the ear, it fully knows,
By the twanging
And the clanging,
How the danger ebbs and flows;
Yet the ear distinctly tells,
In the jangling
And the wrangling,
How the danger sinks and swells,
By the sinking or the swelling in the anger of the bells[85]
Of the bells—
Of the bells, bells, bells, bells,
Bells, bells, bells—
In the clamor and the clangor of the bells!
Hear the tolling of the bells—
Iron bells!
What a world of solemn thought their monody compels
In the silence of the night,
How we shiver with affright
With the melancholy menace of their tone!
For every sound that floats
From the rust within their throats
Is a groan.
And the people—ah, the people—
They that dwell up in the steeple,
All alone,
And who tolling, tolling, tolling,
In that muffled monotone,
Feel a glory in so rolling
On the human heart a stone—
They are neither man nor woman—
They are neither brute nor human—
They are Ghouls:
And their king it is who tolls;
And he rolls, rolls, rolls,
A pæan from the bells!
And his merry bosom swells
With the pæan of the bells![86]
And he dances, and he yells,
Keeping time, time, time,
In a sort of Runic rhyme,
To the pæan of the bells—
Of the bells:
Keeping time, time, time,
In a sort of Runic rhyme,
To the throbbing of the bells—
Of the bells, bells, bells—
To the sobbing of the bells,
Keeping time, time, time,
As he knells, knells, knells,
In a happy Runic rhyme,
To the rolling of the bells—
Of the bells, bells, bells,
To the tolling of the bells—
Of the bells, bells, bells, bells;
Bells, bells, bells—
To the moaning and the groaning of the bells!

E. A. Poe.


1. Some men look upon this temperance cause as a whining bigotry, narrow asceticism, or a vulgar sentimentality, fit for little minds, weak women, and weaker men. On the contrary, I regard it as second only to one or two others of the primary reforms of the age, and for this reason: every race has its peculiar temptation; every clime has its specific sin.[87]

2. The tropics and tropical races are tempted to one form of sensuality; the colder and temperate regions, and our Saxon blood, find their peculiar temptation in the stimulus of drink and food. In old times our heaven was a drunken revel. We relieve ourselves from the over-weariness of constant and exhausting toil by intoxication. Science has brought a cheap means of drunkenness within the reach of every individual.

3. National prosperity and free institutions have put into the hands of almost every workman the means of being drunk for a week on the labor of two or three hours. With that blood and that temptation, we have adopted democratic institutions, where the law has no sanctions but the purpose and virtue of the masses. The statute book rests not on bayonets, as in Europe, but on the hearts of the people.

4. A drunken people can never be the basis of a free government. It is the corner-stone neither of virtue, prosperity, nor progress. To us, therefore, the title-deeds of whose estates, and the safety of whose lives depend upon the tranquility of the streets, upon the virtue of the masses, the presence of any vice which brutalizes the average mass of mankind, and tends to make it more readily the tool of intriguing and corrupt leaders, is necessarily a stab at the very life of the nation. Against such a vice is marshalled the Temperance Reformation.[88]

5. That my sketch is no fancy picture every one of you knows. Every one of you can glance back over your own path, and count many and many a one among those who started from the goal at your side, with equal energy and perhaps greater promise, who has found a drunkard's grave long before this. The brightness of the bar, the ornament of the pulpit, the hope and blessing and stay of many a family—you know, every one of you who has reached middle life, how often on your path you set up the warning, "Fallen before the temptations of the street!"

6. Hardly one house in this city, whether it be full and warm with all the luxury of wealth, or whether it find hard, cold maintenance by the most earnest economy; no matter which—hardly a house that does not count among sons or nephews some victim of this vice. The skeleton of this warning sits at every board. The whole world is kindred in this suffering. The country mother launches her boy with trembling upon the temptations of city life; the father trusts his daughter anxiously to the young man she has chosen, knowing what a wreck intoxication may make of the house-tree they set up.

7. Alas! how often are their worst forebodings more than fulfilled! I have known a case—probably many of you recall some almost equal to it—where one worthy woman could count father, brother, husband, and son-in-law all drunkards—no man among her near[89] kindred, except her son, who was not a victim of this vice. Like all other appetites, this finds resolution weak when set against the constant presence of temptation.

Wendell Phillips.


Up from the South at break of day,
Bringing to Winchester fresh dismay,
The affrighted air with a shudder bore,
Like a herald in haste, to the chieftain's door,
The terrible grumble and rumble and roar,
Telling the battle was on once more,
And Sheridan—twenty miles away!
And wilder still those billows of war
Thundered along the horizon's bar;
And louder yet into Winchester rolled
The roar of that red sea uncontrolled,
Making the blood of the listener cold,
As he thought of the stake in that fiery fray,
And Sheridan—twenty miles away!
But there is a road from Winchester town,
A good, broad highway leading down;[90]
And there, through the flush of the morning light,
A steed as black as the steeds of night,
Was seen to pass as with eagle flight—
As if he knew the terrible need,
He stretched away with the utmost speed;
Hills rose and fell—but his heart was gay,
With Sheridan fifteen miles away!
Still sprung from those swift hoofs, thundering South,
The dust, like the smoke from the cannon's mouth,
Or the trail of a comet sweeping faster and faster,
Foreboding to traitors the doom of disaster;
The heart of the steed and the heart of the master
Were beating like prisoners assaulting their walls,
Impatient to be where the battlefield calls;
Every nerve of the charger was strained to full play,
With Sheridan only ten miles away!
Under his spurning feet the road
Like an arrowy Alpine river flowed,
And the landscape sped away behind
Like an ocean flying before the wind;
And the steed, like a bark fed with furnace ire,
Swept on with his wild eyes full of fire.
But lo! he is nearing his heart's desire—
He is snuffing the smoke of the roaring fray,
With Sheridan only five miles away!
The first that the General saw were the groups
Of stragglers, and then the retreating troops;
What was done—what to do—a glance told him both,
Then striking his spurs with a muttered oath,
He dashed down the line 'mid a storm of huzzahs,
And the wave of retreat checked its course there, because
The sight of the master compelled it to pause.
With foam and with dust the black charger was gray;
By the flash of his eye, and his red nostril's play,
He seemed to the whole great army to say,
"I have brought you Sheridan all the way
From Winchester down to save the day!"
Hurrah, hurrah for Sheridan!
Hurrah, hurrah for horse and man!
And when their statues are placed on high,
Under the dome of the Union sky—
The American soldier's temple of Fame,—
There, with the glorious General's name,
Be it said in letters both bold and bright:
"Here is the steed that saved the day,
By carrying Sheridan into the fight
From Winchester—twenty miles away!"

T. B. Read.

[92] TO A PUPIL.

Is reform needed? Is it through you?
The greater the reform needed, the greater the
Personality you need to accomplish it.
You! do you not see how it would serve to have eyes, blood, complexion, clean and sweet?
Do you not see how it would serve to have such a body and soul that when you enter the crowd an atmosphere of desire and command enters with you, and every one is impressed with your Personality?
O the magnet! the flesh over and over!
Go dear friend, if need be give up all else and commence to-day to inure yourself to pluck, reality, self-esteem, definiteness, elevatedness,
Rest not till you rivet and publish yourself of your own Personality.

Walt Whitman.




1. "Now," said Wardle, after a substantial lunch, with the agreeable items of strong beer and cherry-brandy, had been done ample justice to, "what say you to an hour on the ice? We shall have plenty of time."

"Capital!" said Mr. Benjamin Allen.

"Prime!" ejaculated Mr. Bob Sawyer.

"You skate, of course, Winkle?" said Wardle.

2. "Ye—yes; oh, yes!" replied Mr. Winkle. "I—am rather out of practice."

"Oh, do skate, Mr. Winkle," said Arabella. "I like to see it so much!"

"Oh, it is so graceful!" said another young lady.

A third young lady said it was elegant, and a fourth expressed her opinion that it was "swan-like."

3. "I should be very happy, I am sure," said Mr. Winkle, reddening; "but I have no skates."[94]

This objection was at once overruled. Trundle had got a couple of pair, and the fat boy announced that there were half a dozen more down-stairs; whereat Mr. Winkle expressed exquisite delight, and looked exquisitely uncomfortable.

4. Old Wardle led the way to a pretty large sheet of ice; and, the fat boy and Mr. Weller having shovelled and swept away the snow which had fallen on it during the night, Mr. Bob Sawyer adjusted his skates with a dexterity which to Mr. Winkle was perfectly marvellous, and described circles with his left leg, and cut figures of eight, and inscribed upon the ice, without once stopping for breath, a great many other pleasant and astonishing devices, to the excessive satisfaction of Mr. Pickwick, Mr. Tupman, and the ladies; which reached a pitch of positive enthusiasm when old Wardle and Benjamin Allen, assisted by the aforesaid Bob Sawyer, performed some mystic evolutions, which they called a reel.

5. All this time Mr. Winkle, with his face and hands blue with the cold, had been forcing a gimlet into the soles of his feet, and putting his skates on with the points behind, and getting the straps into a very complicated and entangled state, with the assistance of Mr. Snodgrass, who knew rather less about skates than a Hindoo. At length, however, with the assistance of Mr. Weller, the unfortunate skates were firmly screwed and buckled on, and Mr. Winkle was raised to his feet.[95]

6. "Now, then, sir," said Sam, in an encouraging tone, "off with you, and show 'em how to do it."

"Stop, Sam, stop!" said Mr. Winkle, trembling violently, and clutching hold of Sam's arms with the grasp of a drowning man. "How slippery it is, Sam!"

"Not an uncommon thing upon ice, sir," replied Mr. Weller. "Hold up, sir."

This last observation of Mr. Weller's bore reference to a demonstration Mr. Winkle made, at the instant, of a frantic desire to throw his feet in the air, and dash the back of his head on the ice.

7. "These—these—are very awkward skates, ain't they, Sam?" inquired Mr. Winkle, staggering.

"I'm afeered there's an orkard gen'lm'n in 'em, sir," replied Sam.

"Now, Winkle," cried Mr. Pickwick, quite unconscious that there was anything the matter. "Come; the ladies are all anxiety."

"Yes, yes," replied Mr. Winkle with a ghastly smile, "I'm coming."

"Just a-goin' to begin," said Sam, endeavoring to disengage himself. "Now, sir, start off."

8. "Stop an instant, Sam," gasped Mr. Winkle, clinging most affectionately to Mr. Weller. "I find I've got a couple of coats at home that I don't want, Sam. You may have them, Sam."

"Thankee, Sir," replied Mr. Weller.

"Never mind touching your hat, Sam," said Mr.[96] Winkle hastily. "You needn't take your hand away to do that. I meant to have given you five shillings this morning for a Christmas-box, Sam. I'll give it to you this afternoon, Sam."

"You're wery good, sir," replied Mr. Weller.

"Just hold me at first, Sam, will you?" said Mr. Winkle. "There, that's right. I shall soon get in the way of it, Sam. Not too fast, Sam; not too fast!"

9. Mr. Winkle stooping forward, with his body half doubled up, was being assisted over the ice by Mr. Weller, in a very singular and un-swan-like manner, when Mr. Pickwick most innocently shouted from the opposite bank,—


"Sir?" said Mr. Weller.

"Here! I want you."

"Let go, sir," said Sam; "don't you hear the governor a-callin'? Let go, sir."

10. With a violent effort Mr. Weller disengaged himself from the grasp of the agonized Pickwickian; and, in so doing, administered a considerable impetus to the unhappy Mr. Winkle. With an accuracy which no degree of dexterity or practice could have insured, that unfortunate gentleman bore swiftly down into the centre of the reel, at the very moment when Mr. Bob Sawyer was performing a flourish of unparalleled beauty. Mr. Winkle struck wildly against him, and with a loud crash they fell heavily down. Mr. Pickwick ran to[97] the spot. Bob Sawyer had risen to his feet; but Mr. Winkle was far too wise to do anything of the kind in skates. He was seated on the ice, making spasmodic efforts to smile; but anguish was depicted on every lineament of his countenance.

11. "Are you hurt?" inquired Mr. Benjamin Allen with great anxiety.

"Not much," said Mr. Winkle, rubbing his back very hard.

"I wish you would let me bleed you," said Mr. Benjamin Allen with great eagerness.

"No, thank you," replied Mr. Winkle hurriedly.

"I really think you had better," said Mr. Allen.

"Thank you," replied Mr. Winkle, "I'd rather not."

"What do you think, Mr. Pickwick?" inquired Bob Sawyer.

12. Mr. Pickwick was excited and indignant. He beckoned to Mr. Weller, and said in a stern voice, "Take his skates off."

"No; but really I had scarcely begun," remonstrated Mr. Winkle.

"Take his skates off," repeated Mr. Pickwick firmly.

The command was not to be resisted. Mr. Winkle allowed Sam to obey it in silence.

"Lift him up," said Mr. Pickwick. Sam assisted him to rise.

13. Mr. Pickwick retired a few paces apart from the by-standers; and, beckoning his friend to approach,[98] fixed a searching look upon him, and uttered in a low but distinct and emphatic tone, these remarkable words:

"You're a humbug, sir."

"A what?" said Mr. Winkle, starting.

"A humbug, sir. I will speak plainer if you wish it. An imposter, sir."

With these words Mr. Pickwick turned slowly on his heel, and rejoined his friends.

14. While Mr. Pickwick was delivering himself of the sentiment just recorded, Mr. Weller and the fat boy, having by their joint endeavors cut out a slide, were exercising themselves thereupon in a very masterly and brilliant manner. Sam Weller, in particular, was displaying that beautiful feat of fancy sliding, which is currently denominated "knocking at the cobbler's door," and which is achieved by skimming over the ice on one foot, and occasionally giving a twopenny postman's knock upon it with the other. It was a good long slide; and there was something in the motion which Mr. Pickwick, who was very cold with standing still, could not help envying.

15. "It looks a nice warm exercise, that, doesn't it?" he inquired of Wardle, when that gentleman was thoroughly out of breath by reason of the indefatigable manner in which he had converted his legs into a pair of compasses, and drawn complicated problems on the ice.

"Ah, it does, indeed," replied Wardle. "Do you slide?"[99]

"I used to do so on the gutters, when I was a boy," replied Mr. Pickwick.

"Try it now," said Wardle.

"Oh, do please, Mr. Pickwick!" cried all the ladies.

"I should be very happy to afford you any amusement," replied Mr. Pickwick; "but I haven't done such a thing these thirty years."

16. "Pooh! pooh! nonsense!" said Wardle, dragging off his skates with the impetuosity which characterized all his proceedings. "Here! I'll keep you company; come along." And away went the good-tempered old fellow down the slide with a rapidity which came very close upon Mr. Weller, and beat the fat boy all to nothing.

Mr. Pickwick paused, considered, pulled off his gloves, and put them in his hat, took two or three short runs, balked himself as often, and at last took another run, and went slowly and gravely down the slide, with his feet about a yard and a quarter apart, amidst the gratified shouts of all the spectators.

17. "Keep the pot a-bilin', sir," said Sam; and down went Wardle again, and then Mr. Pickwick, and then Sam, and then Mr. Winkle, and then Mr. Bob Sawyer, and then the fat boy, and then Mr. Snodgrass, following closely upon each other's heels, and running after each other with as much eagerness as if all their future prospects in life depended on their expedition.[100]

18. It was the most intensely interesting thing to observe the manner in which Mr. Pickwick performed his share in the ceremony; to watch the torture of anxiety with which he viewed the person behind gaining upon him at the imminent hazard of tripping him up; to see him gradually expend the painful force which he had put on at first, and turn slowly round on the slide, with his face towards the point from which he started; to contemplate the playful smile which mantled on his face when he had accomplished the distance, and the eagerness with which he turned round when he had done so, and ran after his predecessor, his black gaiters tripping pleasantly through the snow, and his eyes beaming cheerfulness and gladness through his spectacles. And when he was knocked down, (which happened upon the average every third round), it was the most invigorating sight that could possibly be imagined, to behold him gather up his hat, gloves, and handkerchief with a glowing countenance, and resume his station in the rank with an ardor and enthusiasm which nothing could abate.

19. The sport was at its height, the sliding was at the quickest, the laughter was at the loudest, when a sharp, smart crack was heard. There was a quick rush towards the bank, a wild scream from the ladies, and a shout from Mr. Tupman. A large mass of ice disappeared, the water bubbled up over it, and Mr. Pickwick's hat, gloves, and handkerchief were floating on[101] the surface; and this was all of Mr. Pickwick that anybody could see.

20. Dismay and anguish were depicted on every countenance; the males turned pale, and the females fainted; Mr. Snodgrass and Mr. Winkle grasped each other by the hand, and gazed at the spot where their leader had gone down, with frenzied eagerness; while Mr. Tupman, by way of rendering the promptest assistance, and at the same time conveying to any person who might be within hearing the clearest possible notion of the catastrophe, ran off across the country at his utmost speed, screaming "Fire!" with all his might and main.

21. It was at this very moment, when old Wardle and Sam Weller were approaching the hole with cautious steps and Mr. Benjamin Allen was holding a hurried consultation with Mr. Bob Sawyer on the advisability of bleeding the company generally, as an improving little bit of professional practice,—it was at this very moment that a face, head, and shoulders emerged from beneath the water, and disclosed the features and spectacles of Mr. Pickwick.

22. "Keep yourself up for an instant, for only one instant," bawled Mr. Snodgrass.

"Yes—do: let me implore you—for my sake," roared Mr. Winkle, deeply affected. The adjuration was rather unnecessary; the probability being, that, if Mr. Pickwick had not decided to keep himself up for[102] anybody else's sake, it would have occurred to him that he might as well do so for his own.

"Do you feel the bottom there, old fellow?" said Wardle.

"Yes—certainly," replied Mr. Pickwick, wringing the water from his head and face, and gasping for breath. "I fell upon my back. I couldn't get on my feet at first."

23. The clay upon so much of Mr. Pickwick's coat as was yet visible bore testimony to the accuracy of this statement; and, as the fears of the spectators were still further relieved by the fat boy's suddenly recollecting that the water was nowhere more than five feet deep, prodigies of valor were performed to get him out. After a vast quantity of splashing and cracking and struggling, Mr. Pickwick was at length fairly extricated from his unpleasant situation, and once more stood on dry land.

24. Mr. Pickwick was wrapped up, and started off for home, presenting the singular phenomenon of an elderly gentleman dripping wet, and without a hat, with his arms bound down to his sides, skimming over the ground without any clearly defined purpose, at the rate of six good English miles an hour.

Charles Dickens.


Ever let the Fancy roam;
Pleasure never is at home:
At a touch sweet Pleasure melteth,
Like to bubbles when rain pelteth;
Then let wingéd Fancy wander
Through the thought still spread beyond her:
Open wide the mind's cage-door,
She'll dart forth, and cloudward soar.
O sweet Fancy! let her loose;
Summer's joys are spoilt by use,
And the enjoying of the Spring
Fades as does its blossoming;
Autumn's red-lipp'd fruitage too,
Blushing through the mist and dew,
Cloys with tasting: What do then?
Sit thee by the ingle, when
The sear faggot blazes bright,
Spirit of a winter's night;
When the soundless earth is muffled,
And the cakéd snow is shuffled
From the ploughboy's heavy shoon;
When the Night doth meet the Noon
In a dark conspiracy
To banish Even from her sky.
Sit thee there, and send abroad,
With a mind self-overaw'd,[104]
Fancy, high-commission'd:—send her!
She has vassals to attend her:
She will bring, in spite of frost,
Beauties that the earth hath lost;
She will bring thee, all together,
All delights of summer weather;
All the buds and bells of May,
From dewy sward of thorny spray;
All the heapéd Autumn's wealth,
With a still, mysterious stealth:
She will mix these pleasures up
Like three fit wines in a cup,
And thou shalt quaff it:—thou shalt hear
Distant harvest-carols clear;
Rustle of the reapéd corn;
Sweet birds antheming the morn:
And, in the same moment—hark!
'Tis the early April lark,
Or the rooks, with busy caw,
Foraging for sticks and straw.
Thou shalt, at one glance, behold
The daisy and the marigold;
White-plumed lilies, and the first
Hedge-grown primrose that hath burst;
Shaded hyacinth, alway
Sapphire queen of the mid-May;
And every leaf, and every flower
Pearléd with the self-same shower.
Thou shalt see the field-mouse peep
Meagre from its celléd sleep;
And the snake all winter-thin
Cast on sunny bank its skin;
Freckled nest-eggs thou shalt see
Hatching in the hawthorn-tree,
When the hen-bird's wing doth rest
Quiet on her mossy nest;
Then the hurry and alarm
When the bee-hive casts its swarm;
Acorns ripe down-pattering,
While the autumn breezes sing.
Oh, sweet Fancy! let her loose;
Everything is spoilt by use:
Where's the cheek that doth not fade,
Too much gazed at? Where's the maid
Whose lip mature is ever new?
Where's the eye, however blue,
Doth not weary? Where's the face
One would meet in every place?
Where's the voice, however soft,
One would hear so very oft?
At a touch sweet Pleasure melteth
Like to bubbles when rain pelteth.
Let then wingéd Fancy find
Thee a mistress to thy mind:
Dulcet-eyed as Ceres' daughter,[106]
Ere the God of Torment taught her
How to frown and how to chide;
With a waist and with a side
White as Hebe's, when her zone
Slipt its golden clasp, and down
Fell her kirtle to her feet,
While she held the goblet sweet,
And Jove grew languid.—Break the mesh
Of the Fancy's silken leash;
Quickly break her prison-string,
And such joys as these she'll bring.
—Let the wingéd Fancy roam,
Pleasure never is at home.

J. Keats.


Oh, wherefore come ye forth, in triumph from the north,
With your hands, and your feet, and your raiment all red?
And wherefore doth your rout send forth a joyous shout?
And whence be the grapes of the wine-press which we tread?
Oh, evil was the root, and bitter was the fruit,
And crimson was the juice of the vintage that ye trod;
For we trampled on the throng of the haughty and the strong,
Who sat in the high places, and slew the saints of God.
It was about the noon of a glorious day in June,
That we saw their banner's dance, and their cuirasses shine:
And the Man of Blood was there, with his long essenced hair,
And Astley, and Sir Marmaduke, and Rupert of the Rhine.
Like a servant of the Lord, with his Bible and his sword,
The general rode along us, to form us to the fight,
When a murmuring sound broke out, and swelled into a shout,
Among the godless horsemen, upon the tyrant's right.
And, hark! like the roar of the billows on the shore,
The cry of battle rises along their charging line!
For God! for the Cause! for the Church! for the Laws!
For Charles, king of England, and Rupert of the Rhine!
The furious German comes, with his clarions and his drums,
His bravoes of Alsatia, and pages of Whitehall;
They are bursting on our flanks. Grasp your pikes, close your ranks,
For Rupert never comes but to conquer or to fall.
They are here! They rush on! We are broken! We are gone!
Our left is borne before them like stubble on the blast.
O Lord, put forth thy might! O Lord, defend the right!
Stand back to back, in God's name, and fight it to the last.
Stout Skippon hath a wound; the center hath given ground;
Hark! hark! What means this trampling of horsemen in our rear?
Whose banner do I see, boys? 'Tis he, thank God! 'tis he, boys.
Bear up another minute: brave Oliver is here.
Their heads all stooping low, their points all in a row,
Like a whirlwind on the trees, like a deluge on the dykes;
Our cuirassiers have burst on the ranks of the Accurst,
And at a shock have scattered the forest of his pikes.
Fast, fast, the gallants ride, in some safe nook to hide
Their coward heads, predestined to rot on Temple Bar;
And he—he turns, he flies:—shame on those cruel eyes
That bore to look on torture, and dare not look on war.

Lord Macaulay.


1. I had occasion, a few weeks since, to take the early train from Providence to Boston; and for this purpose rose at two o'clock in the morning. Everything around was wrapt in darkness and hushed in silence, broken only by what seemed at that hour the unearthly clank and rush of the train. It was a mild, serene, midsummer's night—the sky was without a cloud—the winds were whist. The moon, then in the last quarter, had just risen, and the stars shone with a spectral lustre but little affected by her presence. Jupiter two hours high, was the herald of the day; the Pleiades, just above the horizon, shed their sweet influence in the east; Lyra sparkled near the zenith; the steady pointers, far beneath the pole, looked meekly up from the depths of the north to their sovereign.

2. Such was the glorious spectacle as I entered the train. As we proceeded, the timid approach of twilight became more perceptible; the intense blue of the sky began to soften; the smaller stars, like little children, went first to rest; the sister-beams of the Pleiades soon melted together; but the bright constellations of the west and north remained unchanged. Steadily the wondrous transfiguration went on. Hands of angels, hidden from mortal eyes, shifted the scenery of the heavens; the glories of night dissolved into the glories of dawn.[110]

3. The blue sky now turned more softly gray; the great watch-stars shut up their holy eyes; the east began to kindle. Faint streaks of purple soon blushed along the sky; the whole celestial concave was filled with the inflowing tides of the morning light, which came pouring down from above in one great ocean of radiance; till at length, as we reached the Blue Hills, a flash of purple fire blazed out from above the horizon, and turned the dewy tear-drops of flower and leaf into rubies and diamonds. In a few seconds, the everlasting gates of the morning were thrown wide open, and the lord of day, arrayed in glories too severe for the gaze of man, began his state.

4. I do not wonder at the superstition of the ancient Magians, who in the morning of the world went up to the hill-tops of Central Asia, and, ignorant of the true God, adored the most glorious work of his hand. But I am filled with amazement, when I am told, that, in this enlightened age and in the heart of the Christian world, there are persons who can witness this daily manifestation of the power and wisdom of the Creator, and yet say in their hearts, "There is no God."

Edward Everett.


This is the ship of pearl, which, poets feign,
Sails the unshadowed main,—
The venturous bark that flings
On the sweet summer wind its purple wings
In gulfs enchanted, where the siren sings,
And coral reefs lie bare,
Where the cold sea-maids rise to sun their streaming hair.
Its webs of living gauze no more unfurl,—
Wrecked is the ship of pearl!
And every chambered cell,
Where its dim dreaming life was wont to dwell,
As the frail tenant shaped his growing shell,
Before thee lies revealed,—
Its irised ceiling rent, its sunless crypt unsealed!
Year after year beheld the silent toil
That spread his lustrous coil;
Still, as the spiral grew,
He left the past year's dwelling for the new,
Stole with soft step its shining archway through,
Built up its idle door,
Stretched in his last-found home, and knew the old no more.
Thanks for the heavenly message brought by thee,
Child of the wandering sea,[112]
Cast from her lap forlorn!
From thy dead lips a clearer note is borne
Than ever Triton blew from wreathed horn!
While on mine ear it rings,
Through the deep caves of thought I hear a voice that sings:
Build thee more stately mansions, O my soul,
As the swift seasons roll!
Leave thy low-vaulted past!
Let each new temple, nobler than the last,
Shut thee from heaven with a dome more vast,
Till thou at length art free,
Leaving thine outgrown shell by life's unresting sea!

O. W. Holmes.


1. Once more I am upon this serene hill-top! The air is very clear, very still, and very solemn or, rather, tenderly sad, in its serene brightness. It is not that moist spring air, full of the smell of wood, of the soil, and of the odor of vegetation, which warm winds bring to us from the south.

2. It is not that summer atmosphere, full of alternations of haze and fervent clearness, as if Nature were calling into life every day some influence for its myriad children; sometimes in showers, and sometimes with coercive heat upon root and leaf; and, like a universal[113] task-master, was driving up the hours to accomplish the labors of the year.

3. No! In these autumn days there is a sense of leisure and of meditation. The sun seems to look down upon the labors of its fiery hands with complacency. Be satisfied, O seasonable Sun! Thou hast shaped an ample year, and art garnering up harvests which well may swell thy rejoicing heart with gracious gladness.

4. One who breaks off in summer, and returns in autumn to the hills, needs almost to come to a new acquaintance with the most familiar things. It is another world; or it is the old world a-masquerading; and you halt, like one scrutinizing a disguised friend, between the obvious dissemblance and the subtile likeness.

5. Southward of our front door there stood two elms, leaning their branches toward each other, forming a glorious arch of green. Now, in faint yellow, they grow attenuated and seem as if departing; they are losing their leaves and fading out of sight, as trees do in twilight. Yonder, over against that young growth of birch and evergreen, stood, all summer long, a perfect maple-tree, rounded out on every side, thick with luxuriant foliage, and dark with greenness, save when the morning sun, streaming through it, sent transparency to its very heart.

6. Now it is a tower of gorgeous red. So sober and[114] solemn did it seem all summer, that I should think as soon to see a prophet dancing at a peasant's holiday, as it transfigured to such intense gayety! Its fellows, too, the birches and the walnuts, burn from head to foot with fires that glow but never consume.

7. But these holiday hills! Have the evening clouds, suffused with sunset, dropped down and become fixed into solid forms? Have the rainbows that followed autumn storms faded upon the mountains and left their mantles there? Yet, with all their brilliancy, how modest do they seem; how patient when bare, or burdened with winter; how cheerful when flushed with summer-green, and how modest when they lift up their wreathed and crowned heads in the resplendent days of autumn!

8. I stand alone upon the peaceful summit of this hill, and turn in every direction. The east is all a-glow; the blue north flushes all her hills with radiance; the west stands in burnished armor; the southern hills buckle the zone of the horizon together with emeralds and rubies, such as were never set in the fabled girdle of the gods! Of gazing there cannot be enough. The hunger of the eye grows by feeding.

9. Only the brotherhood of evergreens—the pine, the cedar, the spruce, and the hemlock—refuse to join this universal revel. They wear their sober green through autumn and winter, as if they were set to keep open the path of summer through the whole year, and[115] girdle all seasons together with a clasp of endless green.

10. But in vain do they give solemn examples to the merry leaves which frolic with every breeze that runs sweet riot in the glowing shades. Gay leaves will not be counselled, but will die bright and laughing. But both together—the transfigured leaves of deciduous trees and the calm unchangeableness of evergreens—how more beautiful are they than either alone! The solemn pine brings color to the cheek of the beeches, and the scarlet and golden maples rest gracefully upon the dark foliage of the million-fingered pine.

11. Lifted far above all harm of fowler or impediment of mountain, wild fowl are steadily flying southward. The simple sight of them fills the imagination with pictures. They have all summer long called to each other from the reedy fens and wild oat-fields of the far north. Summer is already extinguished there.

12. Winter is following their track, and marching steadily toward us. The spent flowers, the seared leaves, the thinning tree-tops, the morning frost, have borne witness of a change on earth; and these caravans of the upper air confirm the tidings. Summer is gone; winter is coming!

13. The wind has risen to-day. It is not one of those gusty, playful winds that frolic with the trees. It is a wind high up in air, that moves steadily, with a solemn[116] sound, as if it were the spirit of summer journeying past us; and, impatient of delay, it does not stoop to the earth, but touches the tops of the trees, with a murmuring sound, sighing a sad farewell and passing on.

14. Such days fill one with pleasant sadness. How sweet a pleasure is there in sadness! It is not sorrow; it is not despondency; it is not gloom! It is one of the moods of joy. At any rate I am very happy, and yet it is sober, and very sad happiness. It is the shadow of joy upon the soul! I can reason about these changes. I can cover over the dying leaves with imaginations as bright as their own hues; and, by Christian faith, transfigure the whole scene with a blessed vision of joyous dying and glorious resurrection.

15. But what then? Such thoughts glow like evening clouds, and not far beneath them are the evening twilights, into whose dusk they will soon melt away. And all communions, and all admirations, and all associations, celestial or terrene, come alike into a pensive sadness, that is even sweeter than our joy. It is the minor key of our thoughts.

Henry Ward Beecher.


Around this lovely valley rise
The purple hills of Paradise.[117]
O, softly on yon banks of haze
Her rosy face the Summer lays!
Becalmed along the azure sky,
The argosies of Cloudland lie,
Whose shores, with many a shining rift,
Far off their pearl-white peaks uplift.
Through all the long midsummer day
The meadow-sides are sweet with hay.
I seek the coolest sheltered seat,
Just where the field and forest meet,—
Where grow the pine trees tall and bland,
The ancient oaks austere and grand,
And fringy roots and pebbles fret
The ripples of the rivulet.
I watch the mowers, as they go
Through the tall grass a white-sleeved row.
With even stroke their scythes they swing,
In tune their merry whetstones ring.
Behind, the nimble youngsters run,
And toss the thick swaths in the sun.
The cattle graze, while, warm and still,
Slopes the broad pasture, basks the hill,
And bright, where summer breezes break,
The green wheat crinkles like a lake.
The butterfly and humble bee
Come to the pleasant woods with me;[118]
Quickly before me runs the quail,
Her chickens skulk behind the rail;
High up the lone wood-pigeon sits,
And the woodpecker pecks and flits,
Sweet woodland music sinks and swells,
The brooklet rings its tinkling bells,
The swarming insects drone and hum,
The partridge beats his throbbing drum,
The squirrel leaps among the boughs,
And chatters in his leafy house,
The oriole flashes by; and, look!
Into the mirror of the brook,
Where the vain bluebird trims his coat,
Two tiny feathers fall and float.
As silently, as tenderly,
The down of peace descends on me.
O, this is peace! I have no need
Of friend to talk, of book to read.
A dear Companion here abides;
Close to my thrilling heart He hides;
The holy silence is His voice:
I lie and listen and rejoice.

J. T. Trowbridge


That way look, my Infant, lo!
What a pretty baby-show![119]
See the Kitten on the wall,
Sporting with the leaves that fall,
Withered leaves—one—two—and three—
From the lofty elder-tree!
Through the calm and frosty air
Of this morning bright and fair,
Eddying round and round they sink
Slowly, slowly: one might think,
From the motions that are made,
Every little leaf conveyed
Sylph or Faery hither tending,—
To this lower world descending,
Each invisible and mute,
In his wavering parachute.
—But the Kitten, how she starts,
Crouches, stretches, paws, and darts!
First at one, and then its fellow
Just as light and just as yellow;
There are many now—now one—
Now they stop and there are none.
What intenseness of desire
In her upward eye of fire!
With a tiger-leap half-way
Now she meets the coming prey,
Lets it go as fast, and then
Has it in her power again:[120]
Now she works with three or four,
Like an Indian conjurer;
Quick as he in feats of art,
Far beyond in joy of heart.
Were her antics played in the eye
Of a thousand standers-by,
Clapping hands with shout and stare,
What would little Tabby care
For the plaudits of the crowd?
Over happy to be proud,
Over wealthy in the treasure
Of her own exceeding pleasure!
Such a light of gladness breaks,
Pretty Kitten! from thy freaks,—
Spreads with such a living grace
O'er my little Dora's face;
Yes, the sight so stirs and charms
Thee, Baby, laughing in my arms,
That almost I could repine
That your transports are not mine,
That I do not wholly fare
Even as ye do, thoughtless pair!
And I will have my careless season
Spite of melancholy reason,
Will walk through life in such a way
That, when time brings on decay,
Now and then I may possess
Hours of perfect gladsomeness.
—Pleased by any random toy;
By a kitten's busy joy,
Or an infant's laughing eye
Sharing in the ecstasy;
I would fare like that or this,
Find my wisdom in my bliss;
Keep the sprightly soul awake,
And have faculties to take,
Even from things by sorrow wrought,
Matter for a jocund thought,
Spite of care, and spite of grief,
To gambol with Life's falling Leaf.

William Wordsworth.


Untremulous in the river clear,
Toward the sky's image, hangs the imaged bridge;
So still the air that I can hear
The slender clarion of the unseen midge;
Out of the stillness, with a gathering creep,
Like rising wind in leaves, which now decreases,
Now lulls, now swells, and all the while increases,
The huddling trample of a drove of sheep
Tilts the loose planks, and then as gradually ceases
In dust on the other side; life's emblem deep,
A confused noise between two silences,
Finding at last in dust precarious peace.
On the wide marsh the purple-blossomed grasses
Soak up the sunshine; sleeps the brimming tide,
Save when the wedge-shaped wake in silence passes
Of some slow water-rat, whose sinuous glide
Wavers the long green sedge's shade from side to side;
But up the west, like a rock-shivered surge,
Climbs a great cloud edged with sun-whitened spray;
Huge whirls of foam boil toppling o'er its verge,
And falling still it seems, and yet it climbs alway.
Suddenly all the sky is hid
As with the shutting of a lid,
One by one great drops are falling
Doubtful and slow,
Down the pane they are crookedly crawling,
And the wind breathes low;
Slowly the circles widen on the river,
Widen and mingle, one and all;
Here and there the slenderer flowers shiver,
Struck by an icy rain-drop's fall.
Now on the hills I hear the thunder mutter,
The wind is gathering in the west;
The upturned leaves first whiten and flutter,
Then droop to a fitful rest;
Up from the stream with sluggish flap
Struggles the gull and floats away;
Nearer and nearer rolls the thunder-clap,[123]
We shall not see the sun go down to-day:
Now leaps the wind on the sleepy marsh,
And tramples the grass with terrified feet,
The startled river turns leaden and harsh.
You can hear the quick heart of the tempest beat.
Look! look! that livid flash!
And instantly follows the rattling thunder,
As if some cloud-crag, split asunder,
Fell, splintering with a ruinous crash,
On the Earth, which crouches in silence under;
And now a solid gray wall of rain
Shuts off the landscape, mile by mile;
For a breath's space I see the blue wood again,
And, ere the next heart-beat, the wind-hurled pile,
That seemed but now a league aloof,
Bursts crackling o'er the sun-parched roof;
Against the windows the storm comes dashing,
Through tattered foliage the hail tears crashing,
The blue lightning flashes,
The rapid hail clashes,
The white waves are tumbling,
And, in one baffled roar,
Like the toothless sea mumbling
A rock-bristled shore,
The thunder is rumbling
And crashing and crumbling,—
Will silence return never more?
Hush! Still as death,
The tempest holds his breath[124]
As from a sudden will;
The rain stops short, but from the eaves
You see it drop, and hear it from the leaves,
All is so bodingly still;
Again, now, now, again
Plashes the rain in heavy gouts,
The crinkled lightning
Seems ever brightening,
And loud and long
Again the thunder shouts
His battle-song,—
One quivering flash,
One wildering crash,
Followed by silence dead and dull,
As if the cloud, let go,
Leapt bodily below
To whelm the earth in one mad overthrow,
And then a total lull.
Gone, gone, so soon!
No more my half-crazed fancy there
Can shape a giant in the air,
No more I see his streaming hair,
The writhing portent of his form;
The pale and quiet moon
Makes her calm forehead bare,
And the last fragments of the storm,
Like shattered rigging from a fight at sea,
Silent and few, are drifting over me.

James Russell Lowell.


All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits, and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first, the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms.
And then, the whining school-boy, with his satchel,
And shining morning face, creeping, like snail,
Unwillingly to school. And then the lover,
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress' eyebrow. Then the soldier,
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like a pard,
Jealous in honor, sudden and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon's mouth. And then, the justice,
In fair round belly, with good capon lin'd,
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances,
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon,
With spectacles on nose, and pouch on side;
His youthful hose well sav'd, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound. Last scene of all,
That ends this strange, eventful history,
Is second childishness, and mere oblivion;
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

William Shakespeare.


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Transcriber's Note:

Spelling has been retained as in the original publication, including "cocknify" on page 75 and "wery" on page 96. Changes have been made as follows:

Page 26
a tax of pendantry
a tax of pedantry

Page 60
if its long for you to wait
if it's long for you to wait