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Like other feeble things; for yet seven days
He is beside thee;
(He goes off. Ugo. My father, may the God of peace be with
Old Man. (looking earnestly at him.) Yes, thou art SCENE IV.
here, good Ugolin - good Ugolin!
And thou art good : dear child, give me thy hand. Evening. The Old Man sitting in his chair wilhin My children, I for many years have hung his own door — he appears very ill — his daughter Like a dark cloud above your true affection ; supports him.
But I shall pass away, and Heaven will crown
Your life with a long sunshine. Old Man. Oh what an icy pang shoots through
Dear, dear father, my frame!
Take not a thought for us; God has been good! God help the feeble who do suffer thus !
Thy life has been our blessing. Marg. Some woe hath fallen on thee in the city ; l Ów Mon
Yes, my child, Tell me, and who that stranger was, dear father.
How truly dost thou say that God is good. Old Man. Oh, ask me not of aught; I am afflicted
I know that he is good ; but my weak faith Body and mind, I am afflicted sore!
Has failed my latter days. I have repined Marg. Call upon God, my father, he will help
| That still my life had a prolonged date. thee.
(Ugolin comes up. I saw not mercy in my length of years, Ugo. My good old friend, how does it fare with
with And I have sinned perchance a deadly sin ! you?
Ugo. Remember, God is full of tender mercy, Old Man. My son, I am afflicted-mind and body | And knows our weakness, nor will try our strength Are suffering now together!
Beyond what it can bear. Ugo. [to Marg.) What means he?
Oh for a sign Marg. I do not know: the guest of yesterday
That I might be accepted; that the sin Seduced him to the city; and perchance
Of my repinings had been blotted out! The crowd, the noise, the newness of the scene
I fear to die, who have so prayed for death! Have overcome his strength ; or else perchance
Ugo. Bethink thee, how our blessed Lord was He saw some scene of riot or distress
tried, Which thus hath wrought upon his feebleness.
And of the agony wherein he prayed Ugo. Father, shall we support thee to thy bed,
That that most bitter cup might pass from him! And read to thee, and comfort thee with prayer?
He bore those pangs for thee, and by his stripes Old Man Ay, let me to my bed, that I may die! T
Thou wilt be healed! Oh put thy trust in him! (They support him in.
Old Man. I am a sinner! save me, oh my God!
[The old man turns his face to the wall. CENE V.
- Margaret and Ugolin kneel down and
pray silently. Midnight. The Old Man lying on his bed - Ugolin
and Margaret sit beside him - Margaret reads.
“ For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality;
SCENE VI. So when this corruptible shall have put on incor. Several days afterwards-a church-yard--a body has ruption, and this mortal shall have put on immor
been committed to the grave; the mourners stand tulity,
round — the stranger comes up as a casual observer Then shall be brought to pass the saying which is
- the minister repeats these words. written, Death is swallowed up in victory.
Oh Death, where is thy sting? O Grave, where is Min. “ Forasmuch as it hath pleased Almighty thy victory?
God of his great mercy to take unto himself the soul The sting of death is sin, and the strength of sin of our dear brother here departed, we therefore comis the law,
mit his body to the ground: earth to earth; ashes But thanks be to God, who giveth us the victory to ashes ; dust to dust: in the sure and certain hope through our Lord Jesus Christ."
of the resurrection to eternal life, through our Lord
She closes the book. Jesus Christ." Old Man. The sting of death is sin ! and over Strang. (aside.] Thus is it, whether it be saint or death;
sinner, "T is the Lord Jesus Christ gives us victory! All are alike committed to the grave, Thank thee, my daughter; there is holy comfort In sure and certain hope of resurrection In those few. words
| To life eternal! Well, the fools at least But think'st thou Ugolin Are charitable in this farewell rite. Will visit us to-night? I fain would have
[He looks among the mourners His prayers before I die.
Sure that's the old man's daughter! and that man
Is pastor Ugolin! There then is buried
" How," inquired Achzib, “ has her loss been so My hope of that repining, weary soul !
very great ?" Death was before-hand with me. I ne'er dreamed "Know you not," rejoined the other, " that a moOf his sands running out, just yet at least;
ther mourns most, suffers most, for the child least Life is a slippery thing! I'll deal no more
worthy of her love ? Man knows not to what an With any mortal who is turned three-score !
extent that mother's heari has suffered: it has been
He hastens off. I wounded unto death, and yet it lives on, enduring a The funeral Irain moves away, preceded
life more painful than death, a life quivering with
the sting of outraged love!" by choristers chanting.
“ Was he not young," inquired Achzib; "how then " I heard a voice from heaven, saying unto me, has he committed so great sin ?" write, from henceforth, blessed are the dead who die “You cannot have attentively regarded these in the Lord; even so suith the spirit, for they shall things," replied the stranger, " or you would know rest from their labours."
that, for a young man, the most perilous of all conditions is to be the son of a widow; for losing the authority, the counsel, the example of a father, he
falls into numberless temptations, against which a This second defeat of Achzib was like a blow given mother can be but an insufficient defence. Besides, by an unseen hand; it was an event altogether ont young men, 100 ofien having experienced the easy, of his calculation. He had heard how the spirit of irresolute, uncertain government of a mother in their the old man, in its moments of irritation, poured forth, boyish years, cease lo regard her with respect as reproaches and murmurs against God, which would they approach manhood.” have been mortal sin had the heart responded to “But," said Achzib, recalling to mind the firm them. But his spirit resembled water in its dead principle and devoted aflection of the Poor Scholar, calm, corrupt and unsightly, which nevertheless “I have known such arriving at manhood, armed at when agitated by the tempest overleaps its barriers, all points against temptation, and cherishing in their throws off its impurities, and rushes on in a strong, souls the most ardent love, the most holy reverence bright torrent. His discontent and his impatience for a mothe were almost meaningless on his own lips; but ad. “God forbid," replied the stranger, “ that I should dressed to him as the sentiments of another, to which say all mothers are inadequate to the government of he was required to assent, he started from their sina son, or all sons incapable of estimating, and gratefulness, beholding, as it were, his own reflected fully rewarding the unwearied solicitude, the never. image. This was an event beyond the range of sleeping affection of a mother; for I myself know a Achzib's idea of possibilities. He was sceptical to widow who has trained three noble sons from their all that virtue in human nature, which great occa- fatherless boyhood, maintaining her own authority, sions bring into action, though it may have lain dor. and nurturing in their souls every virtuous and man. mant for half a life, and which may be regarded as ly sentiment; and who now, adorning manhood, are a store in reserve for extraordinary emergency. as a crown of glory to her brow. And it may also
The old man seemed, as it viere, to have slipped be received as a truth, that love and reverence for a from his grasp; and, half angry with himself for widowed mother will be as much a preservation from being overcome by so apparently weak an opponent, evil as the authority of a father -- but these are the he turned from the burial-place and walked on, he exceptions to the general rule, which is as I have hardly knew whither, for many hours. At length he said, that the sons of widows are the most peculiarly was recalled to his own identity by coming upon a liable to temptation, and the least defended against it." village church-yard, where a funeral was taking “I believe you to be right," replied Achzib, not a place. The dead seemed to have been of the lower little pleased with the hint, which had inadvertently class of society, if you might judge by the appearance' been given him." I believe you are right! and of of the collin, its humble appurtenances, and its sew all temptations to which a young man so circumattendants; but there was a something about its stanced is exposed, those of pleasure would be the chief and only mourner, which told that misfortune most besetting," continued he, remembering the first had brought her thus low. Yet was her whole air sin of poor Luberg. melancholy and wretched in the extreme; and so “Exactly so," said the stranger : "the timid, enerharrowed by grief, so woe-stricke, so wholly self- vating system of sernale government, gives the heart abandoned, that no one could see her for a moment a bias towards pleasure, without strengthening it for without knowing that it was her son who had been resistance, or even enabling it to discriminate becommitted to the dust, the only child of his mother, tween good and evil. This is the snare into which and she a widow.
such generally fall ; and there is hardly a sin more Achzib remarked this to an observant stranger who sorrowfully degrading, or one which holds its victim stood by.
more irreclaimably: he is as one self-conducted to " You are right," he replied, “ they bury the only sacrifice; a captive, who rivets on his own fetters, child of a widow; a son, who having died before his while he groans for freedom: for the indulgence of time, will cause the mother's grey hairs to descend those vices miscalled pleasure, while they deaden the with sorrow to the grave !"
will, leare quiveringly alive the sense of degradation.
How has the poor youth, who is now gone down to In its full joy unto the heaven of heavens ; the dust, looked with streaming eyes upon pure and Thank God for life, and for the spirit which gives noble beings, whom though he still worshipped, he The fulness of enjoyment unto life! had not the power to imitate, and from whose society he was cast as a fallen angel from heaven! How, All that the soul desires of good and fair to obliviate the maddening sense of his own degraded Will I possess ; knowledge that elevates condition, has he plunged into excesses which he ab. And that refines ; and high philosophy, horred! Alas, the spirit, writhing under the com. Which wakes the god-like principle in man; punctuous sense of evil, and the hopelessness of good, And in the founts of sacred poesy is a sight upon which the angels of God might drop I will baptise my spirit, and drink deep tears of pity!"
Of its pure, living waters; and sweet music Achzib was satisfied with what he had heard ; Shall minister to me, like heavenly spirits therefore, bidding his companion good day, he re- Calling me upwards to sublimer worlds! turned to the city. He had, however, a superstitious All that is beautiful in art and nature repugnance to making another trial in the scene of Fair forms in sculptured marble, and the works his late defeat: he therefore removed to a city where of the immortal masters, will I study; all was new to him, and very soon commenced his And so imbue my spirit with a sense fifth essay, according to the hints thrown out by the of grace and majesty, till it shall grow stranger of the church-yard.
Like that which it perceives! To me far lands,
Shall be familiar places: I will seek
The Spirit of greatness where the great have dwelt,
Am I not young, and filled with high resolves ? RAYMOND
And like the sea my will shall be supreme ;
Man shall not set it barriers, nor shall say
“Thus far, but yet no farther!" I will on!
And I will win them both: pleasure, which crowns ADELINE, THE PASTOR'S DAUGHTER, BETROTHED
Glory with its most radiant diadem -
Pleasure, thabsprings from the proud consciousness CLARA, A YOUNG LADY OF THE CITY.
of high achievement, purchased at a price MADAME VAUMAR, HER MOTHER.
None but the great would dare to pay for it!
Ere long, dear mother, thou shalt see thy son
Among the honourable of the earth.
But that it shall is my most solemn purpose,
And this is my first earnest of success
That without power, heaven gives not the desire! tree in the fields -- a small village, half hid among
Yes, yes my mother, I will crown thy age wood, is seen in the distance.
With such transcendent glory of my deeds,
That thou shalt praise God for one chiefest blessingRaymond. How full of joy is life! All things are Thy son, thy dutiful, illustrious son!
From common men - my sensual appetite
But who comes here? He hath the look of ono
Of easy gaiety. - The walk through life Existence is a joy! I walk, I leap
Without impediment; my country breeding, In thut exuberant consciousness of life
Makes me embarrassed in a stranger's presence Which nerves my limbs and makes all action pleasure. But I will up and meet him, and perchance The vigour of strong life is to my frame
• Improve this meeting to a better knowledge. As pinions to the eagle : and my soul
[He rises, and meets a stranger, who is Is as a winged angel, soaring up
advancing over the fields towards him.
Good morrow, sir ! Into the world. I know that youth is weak, You honour glorious Nature, coming out
| And may be lured so easily aside! Into the fields upon a morn like this !
I have a mother, sir, a widowed mother; Strang. Your greeting I return with cordial thanks, I am her only child - I would not leave her; And you too have done well to leave your books My life is vowed to make her bless her son. To steal an hour for morning recreation.
Strang. Give me thy hand, young man, I honour Raym. One hour of a fair morning such as this
thee! Will not suffice me: I shall give the day
A virtue such as thine may face temptation; To one long pleasure. "Tis a festival
Like gold, it will come purer from the fire! My mother honours with great ceremony,
Raym. Kind sir, you do commend me all too much. Even the birth-day of myself, your servant.
But we are now even at my mother's gate Strang. I do esteem myself most fortunate You must walk in, she will rejoice to welcome To meet you on a morning so propitious!
One that has kindly conversed with her son. For your frank greeting, and your kind respect Strang. A fuir and stately mansion, with old woods Have kindled in my soul a friend's regard
Girded around — an honourable assurance In your life's interest, and I gladly wish
That thy good father was a careful man, To your long years, health, wealth, and happiness! And left to thee a patrimony clear!
Raym. To you, a stranger, I owe many thanks ; Raym. "Tis a fair place; and let me make you, sir, And, as my quest this morning was for pleasure, Further acquainted with it, and my mother. And time is of no count, let me walk with you ; She has the kindest smiles for friendly greeting! I can conduct you to our fairest scenes,
Strang. No, my young friend, I must decline that And to some nooks of such sequestered beauty,
Esteem such days solemn and sacred seasons — Strang. 1, like you,
So now farewell! Seek only pleasure on this sunny morning.
Kind sir, farewell to you! I left the city three days since, to spend
I'll pledge our friendship in a generous cup. An interval of business in the country,
(He parts from him. And chance directed me unto yon village,
Strang. He will not cheat me like the widow's son Where I shall yet abide a day or two.
In the frieze-gown sitting among his books !
And spite his talk of virtue and high doings,
She is a woman who has tried the world, Strang.
Ha! one-and-twenty And found it a deceit; therefore she keeps It is an age of happiness - the boy
Her gentle Raymond like a Corydon,
Watching his silly sheep among the fields.
Hath eaten the forbidden fruit this day!
Raym. You are not a grave councillor, who bids But thou must pay the stated price thereof! The inexperienced watch, and watch and wait, Now fare thee well! I'll meet thee this same eve Ever distrusting-still expecting evil!
Before the pastor and thy wisest mother Strang. Wisdom is wigest which is bought from Do arm thee with suspicious wariness! proof.
(He goes off Try all things, prove them, make your virtue sure l'pon the rock of wise experience! Cp, and partake of pleasure while you may;
SCENE II. A time will come, of feebleness and care,
| Evening--the west tinged with the fading clouds of a When she will fly from you, howe'er you woo her!
gorgeous sunset, the full-moon shining high in the Raym. My youth is vowed to study; therein lies
heavens — Raymond and Adeline standing together My pleasure:- knowledge, and the high reward Of an ennobled mind, these are alono
on a garden lerrace, before the open window of the
Raym. How like a fair face shining out of heaven,
All things I look upon are beautiful Raym. As yel, I would not dare to trust myself | Even as I felt this morning, feel I now;
The mere perception of a vital power,
Oh say that we shall live; Is strong enjoyment; every breath I draw,
Though we have sinned, yet save! Is like the quaffing an inspiring draught
Alas, the day is done!
God has abandoned us !
Oh sea, roll over us Adel. Raymond, be sure he was some alchemist
Cover us mountains, ere the Judge appear! You met this morning, who hath pondered out
He will not, will not hear
He will not, will not save!
ACT II. -SCENE I.
| Twelve months afterwards — a chamber in a magnifi
cent house in the city. Raym. Nay, Adeline, my soul ran o'er with joy Before I met that stranger.
Barlolin. (alone.) So far and all is well, for my Adel. . 'T was because
good Raymond, You now can call yourself your own sage master. Though a self-willed, is still a hopeful scholar: We shall not see you, Raymond, as we used — True, I have had to war with passion-starts, You are full-grown, and not of nonage now; And strong out-breakings of his natural love You will not come to study with my father Towards that tender, long-enduring mother; Those old Greek poets ; I must read myself;, But now her anger, and her stern upbraidings You will not be my lexicon again!
Will do the work I had found difficult; Raym. Sweet Adeline, I shall come more than ever. The severing of the latest bonds of duty But you forget, I have your father's leave
Nor shall there lack me means to effect disunion ; To lay those old Greek poets by, and read
Black rumours, based on truth, shall reach her earAnother book, whereto, my own dear love,
His thriftless charges; his luxurious life; You must yourself be my sweet lexicon!
His friends the dissolutest in the city;
(He kisses her cheek. His disregard of stated sacraments ; Adel. Oh fie! my father should not give you leave The lawless prodigal he is become, To put your studies by, for well I know
All this shall reach her by a thousand ways. You are a-weary of them, and of us !
She will contrast the present with the past, Raym. Hast thou not been mine angel for these and note the work of twelve months on the boy, years —
Boastful of virtue; see the end of all Oh ever since I was a little child ?
That proud ambition, which did plume itself But now much more than ever!
Upon a glorious eyrie 'mong mankind ! Adel.
But this scheme | The mother's heart is keenly sensitive, Of going to the city, I like not
And, when it hath been wrung, and wronged like her's, Why would you leave us ? you can study here, | Doth take a tone so vehement in sorrow, My father studies in this quiet place ;
That it may pass for acrimonious hate.He ever is distracted in the cily.
Thus stands the case at present! Raym. 'T was a mere vision! I but thought of it.
With the tide Adel. Well, think of it no more !
of headlong pleasure we go sailing on, Raym.
Now, let us in; Filling the echoing air with loud carousal.
She sits within her solitary home,
Affections blighted; hopes that are o'ercast,
[They go in. Thy prodigal will ne'er return to thee!
But hark! there is the voice of merriment
Raymond is loudest at the festive board ;
Raymond is swiftest in the race for ruin;
Wildest in riot; greediest of applause ;
Most daring in the insolent outbreaks
of passion against custom; first in all things ;
Goodliest in person; most refined in manners;
Willy and gracio: is; smiling like an angel,
Yet growing daily blacker, like a fiend!
Oh most accomplished sinner, thou art mine!
But hark again! their merriment grows louder;
Hence will I, and partake their revelry. We do confess our sin! Forgive, forgive!
(He goes out.