Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

making their way towards the scene of operations. Even was also mingled with these, something which denoted a the Quakers, that so seldom frequented the public assem keen sense of the ridiculous joined to a humorous expresblies, did not absent themselves—and well might they be sion, which likewise approximated even to the Indicrous. there that day. It would also have been discerned, had But when the restless eye flasbed beneath his heavy brows, aught but one idea possessed their minds, that not a few darting athwart the audience its rapid glances, it needed no suspicious looking persons were lurking around the settle. great discernment to discover that the ruling passion of its meat, and many tail forms with dark visages were flitting owner was ambition, while its bright twinkle indicated stealthily about in the skirts of the surrounding forest. But an exultation of soul, as though the inner man were glorying tbe half-bewildered inhabitants heeded not these loiterers. in the augustness of the present occasion. It is indeed Truly it was a busy scene, yet there was no noise and 10 true that the good Puritan doctor had never before thought bustle. A deep solemn awe pervaded every mind, and a himself so near the zenith of all earthly renown and spideeper dread and more fearful foreboding brooded over the ritual splendor. thronging multitudes, pressing like an incubus upon every Amid the silence and solemnity which pervaded the spirit.

whole assembly, one of the judges, the same wrinkled little No tongue can tell one tithe of the anguish, of the bit- man who on a former occasion had so strenuously seconded ter agony, felt by those unfortunate sufferers, the accused, the suggestions of Brown, for the apprehension of Rebecca, as they were escorted by the officers of justice to the gene- arose and addressed his compeers. “ It was a great conral rendezvous. Nor can any pen portray the feelings of solation," he said, “and he would humbly beg leave to conmany a sympathising compassionate heart as it yearned gratulate his brethren and associates in the good work they towards some one individual of that sorrowful company. were so fortunately engaged in, that their most excellent That group of prisoners contained the parent, child, hus- and worthy brother and leader in things spiritual, who had band, wife, brother or sister, friend or lover, of many a heart- already gotten to himself such good report in waging this stricken beholder, who dared utter neither a word nor glorious warfare with sin and Sathanas, and all the powers breathe a thought in their behalf.

of darkness, leagued and combined against the Lord's heriLet the scene now be changed within doors, where we tage, was this day present, yea, and had even deigned to sit shall find the multitude nearly all convened, and with them with the honorable the council, thereby condescending to most of the personages who have been introduced into this enlighten by his marvellous wisdom, the judges, and also to history. There are again assernbled the magistrates, the advise their weak understandings, benighted as they were, ellers, ministers and judges, all constituting the honorable and darkened, nay even shrouded in Egyptian darkness, the council ; and here are the witnesses, the accusers, the and in blackness of ignorance, by the prince of the power of afflicted and the possessed. There had been many trials, the air, who, with his imps and agents, seemed to hover and many had been condemr.ed to death, since the trial of around in divers ways and various and manifold manners, Old Meg, but none in which was felt so deep an interest and occasions and times innumerable, and, as it were, to as in the case of the accused person who was first to be overshadow them like bats and locusts. Since therefore slim moned before the dreadful tribunal, and who the reader our brother is with us to-day, it behooves us to honor him need not be told was the gentle, the innocent Rebecca. as he doth deserve to be honored, and I accordingly now

One cause of the unusual concourse of spectators that submit it,” continued he,“ to the council, whether we shall crowded together on that occasion, was their great desire to not commit the care and burden of the trial on this occasee with their own eyes, and hear with their own ears the sion to so true and zealous a champion.” Rer. Dr. Cotton Mather, who, it was rumored, had arrived “So let it be done,” responded a solemn voice among the in the settlement. No man shared a greater portion of the judges. “And that no time be lost, I second, and add my honor of creating the witchcraft excitement, than this some own will to the praiseworthy design of our good brother what distinguished, though eccentric individual ; for as he Scorchsin." himself toastingly, or rather not boastingly, declared, when And so it was done, as with one voice all the council speakiag of the good which had been achieved in the combat resolved that the worthy doctor should preside over the dowith wiches, etc. "I am not so vain as to say that any ings of the court. With a proud and important air, and a risdom or virtue of mine did contribute unto this good order countenance elated by a consciousness of intrinsic dignity, of things ; but I am so just as to say I did not hinder this did he now come forward, bow profoundly to the assemgood." Dr. Mather's hostility to what he calls “ these lively bly, and take the principal seat which was then vacated for demonstrations of hell,” was known far and near. It was him by the usual chief magistrate. Waiting for a moment, well known, also, that the doctor had long been an uncom- and casting a look over the house as if to gratify a transitory promising persecutor of the Quakers. When, therefore, it feeling of triumph, he waived his hand majestically over was anderstood that Dr. Mather himself was to be in propria the audience, apparently to give more effect to his order, petrand, at the trial of a witch, and that witch a Quakeress, and then in a formal tone commanded the prisoner to be and that Quakeress the heroine of our history, the artless, brought forward. And now for the first time, was broken beautiful Rebecca--great was the concourse, and great the the grave-like stillness of the congregation. A low murexcitement of the occasion, and many came with hearts mur went through the crowd, and was succeeded by a rusfiled with compassion for this amiable girl.

tle, as each endeavored to obtain a glimpse of the unfortuThere, when the reader was introduced at the trial of Old nate accused. A female of a slight and delicate figure was Meg, sat the same tribunal. Every part of the old dome now seen passing through the aisle to the seat appointed was full to overflowing. Never did the countenances of an for her. At sight of her timid manner and tremulous step, sadience wear plainer tokens of an all absorbing interest. a sentiment of pity was impressed upon the heart of many All were bushed into breathless expectation. Amongst the a beholder. Exposed to the full gaze of the audience, she honorable council, who occupied an elevated platform before was compelled to stand directly in front of the tribunal, the pulpit, there sat one personage too strikingly prominent there to be confronted by her judges, her accusers, and from his appearance not to command the attention of all those amicted persons, whose business it was to “cry out” eges. There was a strange and singularly mixed combina- upon her, or whomsoever else it seemed possible to fix the tion of expression in his strongly marked and original physi- imputation of witchcraft. When, in presence of all these, ognomy, that denoted no common character; which indica- Rebecca was ordered to unveil herself, a still deeper symted great capacity and power, combined with no ordinary pathy was excited in many bosoms, and a murmur of disapdegree of sagacity, shrewdness, and even cunning. There probation again ran through the assembly. As she modestly

withdrew her veil, and exposed to view the yet unrivalled , swering, indeed, in an alarmed voice, but with asweetness beauty and effeminate softness of her pale features, it was and softness which spoke the purest innocence, sbe said, observed that even the cold inflexible judges, for a moment, “I am conscious of no such guilt or awful sin, even the lost their solemn gravity. It was also said, that the stern thought of which makes me tremble and afraid. O! sir, I countenance of Dr. Mather himself seemed to relax some could not do this great wickedness, for I am but a woman what in its usual severity, when he gazed upon the artless and a girl, that from her very childhood hath been tenderly simplicity of the beautiful being before him. But actuated and delicately nurtured. Alas! I am so far from commitby a high, though mistaken sense of duty, which he cher- ting these abominable deeds, I but little apprehend the naished as the apple of his eye, and which he conceived made ture of what these my accusers say against me, save their it peculiarly incumbent on him to rebuke Satan and purge witnessing that I have carried them to distant places in the away the dross and tin and tinsel from the Lord's heritage, night time, taking upon myself the shape and form of cats, he instantly recovered himself and pronounced in a stern toads and spiders, and other like animals, and thus tormentvoice, “Let the witnesses come forward."

ing them, which I know is false; yea, in sight of Heaven, In obedience to this mandate Rebecca was now opposed and at the peril of my poor afficted soul, I avow it falseby all who had any thing to allege against her. It was hood and a base fabrication, the work doubtless of some proved by many witnesses that the prisoner had often visit. enemy, in proof whereof be it known that this frail careed the habitation of Old Meg. This would have been de- worn body was at that time in vile durance, under bolt and cisive evidence of sorcery, had no other been at hand. But bar. And 0, Reverend Sir, one thing I know, and it is a resort was had to a more conclusive kind of testimony, consolation to think of in this dark hour; there is nought namely, that of the sufferers. The afflicted children, on within this maiden heart of mine could do this, for well whose veracity was the utmost reliance, were brought for- should I merit this cruel death were I found thus sinning." ward. Among them was not forgetten the child of eight At that instant the trial was interrupted by a bustle and years of age, whose complaints of being persecuted by noc- disturbance in the audience. turnal visits while Rebecca was in prison, by her apparition “Yes, I will-I will go-stay me not-let me go." of the black cat, now became of the greatest importance. “ Nay-nay-listen, brother--what wilt thou do ?" The scene which ensued, beggars description. These un- “Hinder me not, sister Anne-go I will, I must-Think happy victims of her cruelty now prostrated themselves not to make me tarry longer like a base coward. I am a upon the ground and began to utter loud shrieks. All was very wretch-1 will advance-stand by—and defend herconfusion and terror.

nay, I will defy them all in their very teeth-unhand me, It is here worthy of remark, that these young children sister !" understood admirably well how to behave on such occa- “ Alack! what canst thou say or do—what wouldst thou sions. They seemed to anticipate the wishes of the judges, do--patience! Thou shalt not go-thou shalt not destroy and always knew exactly the proper season for screams thyself and her, dear brother, and us all." Such was the and lamentations. When, according to the usual mode of occasion of the interruption, which, commencing in a low procedure, the judges compelled Rebecca to fix her eyes altercation, between Charles and Anne Elliot, grew louder steadily upon the bewitched, they did not fail to fall pros- as the parties grew more in earnest. trate, going into writhings and convulsions as if undergoing “Silence! peace, be still !" thundered the judge. “Who most grievous pangs and tortures, and “crying out upon" dares disturb this solemn presence ? Let order be restored." the innocent and terrified Rebecca, who they asserted was And so order was restored, for Anne Elliot clung to tbe at that very instant piercing them with pins, pinching, arm of her brother, by which drawing him into the crowd, scratching, biting and crushing them. How little these she then soon reasoned him into silence, persuading him by misguided instruments of religious fanaticism knew of that her woman's art, it was better to await patiently the issue gentle heart! As, pale and trembling, she stood before them, of the trial than to aggravate the council by an abrupt in. and, despairing of all earthly succor, raised her clasped terference in behalf of his beloved Rebecca. None with hands and sorrowful countenance imploringly to Heaven, human feelings will wonder at the conduct of Charles Elhow little thought they of the agony of that innocent liot on that occasion. bosom!

“Let there be silence," again thundered Dr. Matber, and Dr. Mather at length perceiving the trial could not pro- then he thus continued, addressing Rebecca. “So, maiden, ceed amid such confusion, commanded all the sufferers to it is thus thou reasonest. Dost thou then suppose me ie be removed except the little girl, whom he retained as a norant that bolt and bar cannot oppose the devil ? Who ever special witness, and silence again ensued. Then, address. heard of a witch held from working out her crafty intening Rebecca, he demanded a full confession of all she had tions by iron or steel? And is not a witch eren worse than heard witnessed against her. “Hear me, thou daughter of Satan? What, my brethren, think ye of this impious dam. the stranger, and doubtless, child of Belial, who hath sel? Speak! most worthy brother Scorchsin." leagued thyself with the Prince of Darkness, in divers dia

“ That she is in very deed a witch and a heretic, a daughbolical arts and machinations, thereby to uproot, destroy ter of a cast off branch, a child of Belial, and that she is and drive out of this goodly heritage every vestige of genu- most deserving to suffer as such,” responded the little man. ine orthodoxy. Hearest thou all that is spoken against " Thou, most puissant sir, hast heard her speech. Dost thee? Or canst thou gainsay aught these witnesses do wit- thou not behold how fair she is to look upon ? Let us beness? By what charms and spells and art of hellish sorce- ware lest we be ourselves enticed by her fair outside and ry hast thou practised on these innocents ? Surely thou soft speech. Hath she not but now spoken like a Chriscanst not deny the many horrid practices thou hast wrought tian, and no heterodox heathen, as doubtless she is, saying even upon this little child-changing thy natural form, and she could not do so great wickedness, and that too against assuming the likenesses of dogs, cats, rats, mice, toads, spi- all this sum of testimony? Well knowest thou, most excelders, and divers hateful uncouth shapes, such as with better lent brother Mather, who it is can so easily transform bimand surer success thou mightest work mischief and un- self into an angel of light.” After thus delivering himself

, heard of cruelties? Speak, heretic! Answer to these Brother Scorchsin resumed his place with that indeseri. weighly accusations, if thou canst, I charge thee, and let it bable air and feeling wbich a man always has under the never be said thou wast condemned untried, or that Quaker, proud consciousness of having discharged a little more than witch or sorceress ever lacked mercy at our hands." his whole duty both to his Maker and his fellow creatures.

Then for the first time opening her tremulous lips, and an- “Thou hearest the opinion of this holy man,” resumed

ܕ

Cotton Matber. “Surely thou hast nought to say against it! | less credulous than most of his associates in regard to the And yet maiden, it becometh us not to condemn thee too doctrines of sorcery, aud that he resused to sit with the bastily." Then turning to a young man who occupied a council at the trial of Old Meg. Mr. Elliot was known to proginent seat before the judges. “What is the judgment be of a character and reputation unblemished and irre. of our young brother Brown, respecting this matter, for proachable, in whoin all had learned to place the utmost though a youth, and, as it were a babe in what pertains to confidence, and had been looked up to as one of the fathings spiritual, yet we know he hath a good report, inso-thers of the colony. When this truly good man arose to much that a report of his wisdom hatb reached even our address the assembly and court, all were desirous to catch, own ears, and we would never be found casting away wise amid the breathless silence, the first words which fell from council. Speak, therefore, briefly, brother, touching the his reverend lips. cause of this most unhappy damsel."

" It has been well and advisedly spoken by him who toWith a leer of consummate meekness that worthy per day presides over our councils, that we should not too sodage now arose. Let it be remembered, Brown enter. hastily and rashly proceed against this unfortunate person ; taided for Rebecca that selfish love which becomes bitter and even though it may be, as has been said, and as I doubt batred s ben dispossessed of the object, and doubly hatred not is true, that she is a Quakeress, and in some sense as when it sees tbat object possessed by a hated rival. Yet it were, and as may not be contradicted, a heretic, yet the boping, almost against hope, still to possess the object, by maiden hath a right to all accustomed lenity. Truly it bemeans of schemes and machinations, yet to be developed, cometh us to entertain for the stranger that charity which be dow spoke in this wise, conceiving such the best method suffereth long and is kind, for it is truly a dreadful thing for according to his selfish views of consummating those same even the guilty to suffer this death, but if an innocent permachinations :

son should be condemned to die, God grant, my brethren, " It was little fitting his youth and inexperience to pre- this great guilt rest not upon my head, and that no innocent sume to advise that august and reverend council, and he blood be found in your skirts. Indeed, inany have already trusted he did not lightly appreciate the high honor granted suffered in this manner and by this testimony, and yet the so homble an individual. But being invited by the reverend numbers of the attainted and of those who cry out are in fatber and guide in Israel, who had this day deigned to sit no wise lesse ned, but rather increased by these examples, in council over thein, he could not, even though a youth, insomuch as will soon cause these witches and bewitched resrin from speaking, which may the Lord grant he might to outnumber those that are whole. I would by no means do in all truth and sincerity, acquitting himself according to be found gainsaying or resisting the truth, or blind to the the best of his weak discretion. Truly we are fallen Lord's judgments and wise dispensations, since I verily upon perilous and defectious times--an awful day, when believe there were in olden time, sorcerers and evil spirits, the Arch Enemy, even Satan was coming in like a flood, notwithstanding all which I now humbly believe these gathering together, as it were, all the sons and daughters things have long since passed away; and furtherinore, my of Belial, Gog and Magog, to do battle against this portion brethren"of God's heritage. Yet touching the prisoner at the bar, “Hold! Hold! Brother Elliot !--dost not believe in what more could he say than they had just heard from bro- witchcraft! Hast thou not often seen the strange conduct ther Scorchsin, that the woman is a witch and heretic, of these amicted children; nay, dost thou noi now behold thong sweet spoken and fair to look upon."

this little child, that she is tormented by the diabolical arts Having thus concluded, he took his seat with an air and practices of this Quakeress, daughter of the stranger, somewhat less signifying, than was brother Scorchsin's, called Rebecca,-dost thou say she is not a sorceress ? that wisdom was about to expire with himself; for Brown Stay thy too hasty speech, my brother, lest the enemy trihad too much sense for such excessive vanity, and was one umph over thee. What, my brethren, what think ye of our of the few who perfectly well understood the import of all good brother? Speak Brother Scorchsin!" they were doing.

“Verily, I know not what I should think," said that ready ** Right! right! Truly spoken,” exclaimed Dr. Mather. tongued brother; “except to declare my poor belief that "Well and nobly hath our youthful brother acquitted him. Satan hath with all his fiery legions broken into our very sell, thus faithfully corroborating every good report of his midst, and in very deed hath leagued himself with our most Wisdom. Still let this freedom of speech continue, for it worthy Brother Elliot-confounding the judgments of the behooreth this solemn council so to walk before a prating, honest people of God, and as on the wings of the wind, baik ing world, that no dog can move his tongue; especially prostrating with the besom of destruction the bulwarks of since the accused was a heretic and a child of a heathen righteousness, and leaping wildly into the Lord's fold.” ish Quaker. Do not mine eyes see here a holy and exem- “Enough. It is indeed so, brother. Yet it comforteth plary brother, our whilom coworker in every good work? me greatly to see so clearly my own duty on this trying ocVery grievous is it to my heart to see my worthy brother casion, as respects this Quaker damsel. She shall be dealt Ellioi and quandam fellow-laborer now sitting apart from with, as with a very sorceress, and that right speedily, for the council seat, like a stranger and an outcast; albeit, he, who can count the evil one so tainted and besoited of doubtless, can render good and sufficient reasons for so witchcrast can do-especially since an exemplary brother doing, and reasons that are commendable to his own con. hath been induced to speak in her behalf, as we have toscience; yet if brother Elliot hath aught to say, why sen- day witnessed. Doubtless, brethren, ye have already detence of death be not forthwith passed upon this unfortu- cided that the prisoner deserves sentence of death should Date darnsel, let him say on."

be passed upon her ?" This appeal, so piously made, could not be withstood, ir Aye,” responded one and all of the judges. Mr. Elliot even wished to avoid it. Although he well “Let her be hung by the neck, instanter," said Brother knew the utter hopelessness of any good resulting from an Scorchsin. attempt to resist this overwhelming tide of public senti- “She shall be, for these are surely the Lord's doings," Dent, now at its utmost height, yet he quickly resolved to echoed Dr. Mather. “ Listen to thy doom, maiden! Know improve this good opportunity to offer a calm and honest therefore, thou art accused of divers foul, ungodly pracargument against such reckless fanaticism. No sooner was rices ; such as heing in close intimacy with a known witch, his name mentioned than all eyes were turned upon him. long since condemned and now dead, though not by the The reason why he occupied not his usual place was not gallows, having most unfortunately avoided by a premature generally known. It was indeed understood that he was' death, the lawful fate of the witch, even the hands of the

VOL. VII-28

[ocr errors]

hangman- Furthermore, it has been proved by many wit-| But this advice was needless. The good old man had nesses, but more especially by this young child, that, being already persuaded his truly obedient son to desist from his closely confined in thy prison chamber, thou hast often es- purpose, and pennit the officers of justice to perform their caped from thence in a mysterious and miraculous manner, duty. Again order was restored. Dr. Mather, like all assuming the image or form of a cat, or whatever other others who knew Mr. Elliot, entertained great fear and reshape the Devil hath helped her withal, and thus vanishing spect for his character. He was also well aware of the imthrough the window or up chimney, or as some say, through portance of passing lightly over such encroachments upon the key-hole ;* may I never know the evil ways of a witch! his own dignity and commands as he could not prevent. and then thou hast sallied forth on a broomstick or some He therefore contented himself with embracing so good an other nefarious weapon, I know not what, to a large field, opportunity to give this offending family such salutary adand there, in a great congregation of witches, hast danced vice as he thought their necessities demanded. about the oaks, and done many unlawful and hellish practi- “It is true," he said, our excellent brother hath ever ces. For all these unlawful practices, therefore, unhappy borne a good report, nay, there hath not been heretofore a maiden, who art called Rebecca, a Quakeress! and daugh- more exemplary man in our midst. There is none can inter of a heathenish Quaker !--know! that thou shalt to form him aught of his duty, for no one better understandeth morrow, about this time, die the death of a witch and of the text, ‘he that provideth not for his own bouse is worse one practised in all spells and charms of sorcery, and as than an infidel;' and again also, let every man rule his such shalt thou be hung by the neck till dead, dead, ac own household.' Yet my soul hath been vexed exceedcording to doom; and may the Lord have mercy on thy ingly this day at hearing the speech of our wortby bro:ber, soul."

and yet more especially that the court of the Lord's house “Amen!" ejaculated Brother Scorehsin. But the heart- hath been profaned as we all bave witnessed, though it is, wrung Rebecca, who had kept her eyes, as by a spell, upon doubiless, a just and commendable thing in youth to pity the stern countenance of the judge till the final word was and compassionate even those unfortunate persons who uttered, shrieked, and, as if smitten with a palsy-stroke, bring danger and distress upon themselves, like the unfell instantly upon the floor of the church.

happy maiden just condemned." Immediately there was a bustle among the audience. With these gentle reproofs, accompanied by a few con“ Detain me not,” spake a loud voice, “Hinder me not solatory suggestions, the conscientious judge dismissed this now, for were earth and hell to oppose, I would defend her. unplcasant topic. The day was now far spent, and acShe is innocent! She is innocent! No! Talk not of pru- cordingly the court and assembly adjoured, the other dence or patience, Anne. It were far better to die, setting prisoners being removed to jail, there to await further the caution and philosophy at defiance, than to suffer what we commands of the judges. The wearied multitude now dishave this day seen." Reckless and regardless of all ob- persed in moody silence to their own homes. The same stacles, Charles flew to the help of the fallen Rebecca, evening Dr. Mather departed from the settlement. The with Anne clinging timidly to him, her face all eloquence excitement of the day gave place to the stillness of evenand persuasion, in her endeavors to keep him from rushing ing, and night settled over the village of S-, as usual, upon danger, and most searfully agitated for the conse inviting the inhabitants to repose. quences of her brother's rash conduct.

It was with a sober and resolute aspect that Charles El"Silence !" again resounded from the tribunal. “What liot retraced his way homeward with his sister Anne, after meaneth this uproar and confusion? Officers, take the con the intense agony he had that day experienced. Not a demned criminal instantly to the jail.”

word was spoken, but each seemed conscious of what was In obedience to this mandate, two men seized Rebecca, passing in the mind of the other. There was that in the raised her insensible form, and were proceeding to bear her appearance of the brother, which spoke a firm purpose

and out of the assembly, when Charles Elliot threw himself be. a readiness for adventure, while even the sister bore that fore them, and in an attitude of defiance forbade their stir. in her air which seemed akin to enterprise and daring, ring a step with their burden.

They arrived at their father's house and found as melan. “Beware, presumptuous youth!” exclaimed Dr. Mather. choly a company as ever before were gathered around the “ Beware what thou doest! Thou that puttest thy profane "checrful board.” The cause of their sadness, the reader hand to the ark of God, and stayest the going forward of need not be told, was their deep sympathy for the fate of this good work! But who and what art thou, and who is the poor Quakeress. The hasty meal passed away in 51this maiden with thee? Impious! Avoid thee! Knoweth lence, and all arose from the repast not to talk of grief too any in this presence, and will any one deign to tell me, who deep for utterance, but to weep together in social sorros. these sacrilegious persons are that disturb our assembly."

“ These two persons are the son and daughter of our worthy Brother Elliot, if it may please your most reverend knowing, except its being the hour when Mr. Elliot *a*

At what precise time of night we have no means of honor," shrieked Brother Scorchsin. "But it does not please us that they are the children of and with them worship his God, that it appeared a part of

accustomed to read to his family from the Sacred Page, our worthy brother. This does not please us,” said Mr. his family were missing. These were Charles and his sisi Mather. " Yet they are the very same, and greatly does it grieve refer the reader to the conclusion of chapter 7th, of these

ter Anne. For the cause and purpose of their absence we me thus to corroborate the words of Brother Scorchsin,” | chronicles. said Mr. George Brown.

“It must then indeed be as ye have spoken, and very grievous is it to me also : Brother Elliot, look well unto thy own household. Speak to thy presumptuous son. Teach his hot brain wisdom, for it is truly said that a wise man ruleth his own house," said Cotton Mather.

One of the most eminent painters of Greece, being asked

why he touched and retouched his productions with so much * One of the afflicted persons being asked how the witch care, spending months and years upon a single picture, tegot into her bed-rooin, to torment her at night when her door plied, I paint for posterity. May we remember that our was locked, answered. “She did not know, unless it daily acts go to form a moral portraiture, which, though inInight be through the key-lole.”

perfect, will yet be immortal.

CHRISTMAS HOLIDAYS,

| lets to the whistling wind;" others suppose that the Indians

used to dance there. The Weyanokes, Pyanketanks, AT TEDDINGTON.

Chickahominies, Paspahees, &c. perhaps here celebrated

the war-dance, with its horrid orgies, brandishing alost the Rainy Sunday; in drawing-room at Teddington; fine tomahawk; yelling the war-whoop; and exulting over the large old-fashioned oaken fire. Dramatis Persona ; three blood-stained monuments of victory ;-or the medicine sisters descended from Pocahontas, Alice, Virginia, and dance, with savage incantation, howling around the mystic Rosaland. Miranda, native of a fine city in Italy, famous calabash, and drinking libations of sassafras-tea ; or the for pictures and palaces. Lastly, Farrel, a grave looking per- green corn dance, (roasting-ear time,) with measured step sonage, come down, 'tis said, to explore some old tombstones cbaunting their rude choral hymn of gratitude to the Great in the ricinity. Discourse poetry; the features of the wea. Spirit, for all the rich bounties of his providence. lher; metaphysics ; probabilities of the arrival of main body

Firing poppers in the drawing-room. Viola, “a bright of the party, expected that day, from the neighboring town particular star” in this fiery constellation. Miranda has an of , coming to pass the festive season at Teddington. aversion to all such fire-works, so she becomes the chief Alice at the window observing the aspect of the clouds, and object of attack. They project their incendiary missiles watching the course of three oary-legged wild-ducks navi- among her curls, perforate her handkerchiefs, and blow up gating the river. Sound of the steam-boat bell heard; all her hand at cards. Patience ceases to be a virtue. She bands running to the door and windows; steamer hoves to fulminates among them bitter torrents of invective, and opposite the house; noise of escaping steam stuns the air. flashes indignation at 'em from her sparkling eyes. Teddington boat manned by five negroes puts off ; along. Dinner; a hain of bacon,-in Virginia, a sine qua non ; side ; objurgatory voice of mate heard; group at the gang- without it you cannot organize, or take any parliamentary way descending into the boat. Miranda reconnoitres them, step. At the foot, say a haunch of mution roasted, (Napowith the spy-class ; recognises the souvenir picture-faces leon's favorite,) or, peradventure, an enormous gobler, late of Finella, and her dear friends, Minna and Brenda. Cap- strutting pompous and aristocratical- pasha of the harntain Melville in cap and cloak, and Miranda unbonneted yard harem, now quite chap-fallen, roasted and supine. and in ecstasy, hasten to the landing place. The boat Speaking of mutton!-at college, we used to have so much comes rocking over the waves freighted with young hearts of it, that it was a saying there, that we were, in vacation, fali of hope and expectation. The curved keel strikes the absolutely ashamed to look a sheep in the face. Perhaps it Feilor sand; they disembark. The reverberating din of was owing to this, that so many of us were sheepish in our the steam-pipe ceases, and, at the signal of a tiny bell, re- manners, on leaving our alma mater. To proceed : Rockcommences the regular periodic thump of the paddle-wheel. fish boiled, with silver carving apparatus appurtenant ; Georgiana runs ahead, and is the first to warm her hands at stewed venison, with jelly; oysters, (Back river,) stewed the Teddington fire,

and baked; huge round of beef: vegetables, potatoes, Hi

bernian and sweet Nancies, (from Nansemond;) salsesy; Breakfast ; bultered roll, Sally-Lund–perhaps called hominy; fragile celery-a beautiful interjectional article after the first inventor. Hominy; the origin of this word

for filling up chinks-and delicate cauliflower. Second dortalul,—soine think it African, others Indian. Chicka. course : Pound-cake at one extremity; mince-pie, smoking bominy river empties into the Jaines, near Teddington, and hot, at the other; in line cranberry tarts, lemon-pudding, 1* one of the boundary lines of the plantation. At the head raspberry puffs ; jelly, amber-colored, in glass dish, purple of this river, way up among the 'Chickahominy Slashes, in proper glasses alternated with syllabubs, (inere froth, the Opechancanough took Captain Smith prisoner.

little end of nothing whittled down,) encircling glass salver Brenda and Miranda took a ride; gentlemen in waiting,

in a zodiac. Blanche mange insular, entirely surrounded by

One couleur de rose, like the light Racket and Farrel. Brenda, mounted on Paul Clifford, nick a surf of form; two sorts. tailed sorrel pacer; Miranda, curbed in the vivacity of a

flushes of Aurora's dewy cheek ;-the other type of innolittle rough-coated, bob-tailed chunk of a Canadian poney,

cency, (and in Russia of mourning,) snow-white. Chamwho rejoiced in the name of Jim. Brenda, in long-skirted pagne, sparkling like wit, in crane-necked glasses ; a conEteen riding-dress and equestrian cap, miniature whip; Mi- templative mind will observe light volatile particles ascendranda, in blue. Ground beneath half frozen ; sky above ing with accelerated velocity; ambitious evanescent aspidreary, leaden, unpropitious. Brenda complained bitterly rants, they hasten to the top, only to burst and expire. of cold hands, for which no remedy could be found. Passed Madeira and Malaga also revolve in their proper orbits. a barn ; in the yard; there certain cows cold, stationary, The cloth is removed. Third course : Oranges; apples, red aperturbable. You might think them inanimate forms, but and green; the reds grow at Teddington ; (you see the orfor an occasional twitch of the ear. Cows are your real

chard as you come from the windmill;) almonds, raisins, practical philosophers-true stoics. Their motto “ nil ad. prunes, olives, (de gustibus non est disputandum,) sweet strani." They take every thing as it comes, and calmly re- meats, brandy-peaches and cheese, (old English.) sign themselves to a destiny which is beyond their control.

The sun now sinking in the west behind the tops of the Also there saw a parcel of long-eared little muleys stand. pines, it grows dim and crepuscular. Candles introduced ; ng up to their fodder; fragment of a tomby-stone, 'Travis healths drunk ; toasts.—“ Here captain is to Mrs. Dorothy on it; taking a turn across fields, reached the wide muddy Farrel

, and our interesting friends from Berkshire." Easy James; flocks of wild-geese feeding in the fields, (the over

ship-shod dialogues; an occasional cross-fire of puns and seer killed two or three of them the other day,) expanding conceits; “ a moment tbere, then gone forever;'\interspersed feir broad wings, with wild loud cries of cohonk, cohonk,* with diagonal glances across the table—a sweet surreptithey rise, sail trooping over the water, in grand squadron ;

tious meeting of the eyes. * The air floats as they pass, fanned with unnumbered plumes;" they alight, not far off, in multitudinous clamor- Marriage extraordinary. Monk, a dark melancholy lookparliamentary-all talking at once like Congress. Dancing ing fellow, (such as you would expect to find in inky cowl, Point in sight. Here on the sandy margin hy moonlight, and with

waxen taper in his hand, in a convent of Carmefi iletes, some say, used to meet to “ dance their airy ring. lites, or Franciscans,) to Brenda, who appeared enrobed in

bridal white, half-veiled, with downcast eyes, drooping de* Counk, (cry of wild-geese,) Indian term for Winter. jected lily. Farrel performed the conjugal ceremony with See Beverley's History of Virginia

singular decorurn, committing only one mistake,-that of

« НазадПродовжити »