Front Cover
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Rip Van Winkle
 The wife
 The broken heart
 The art of book-making
 The widow and her son
 The Boar's Head Tavern, Eastch...
 The mutability of literature
 Rural funerals
 The specter bridegroom
 Westminster Abbey
 John Bull
 The legend of Sleepy Hollow
 Postscript, found in the handwriting...
 Back Cover

Title: Rip Van Winkle and other sketches
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00049824/00001
 Material Information
Title: Rip Van Winkle and other sketches
Physical Description: 240 p. : ; 16 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Irving, Washington, 1783-1859
Useful Knowledge Publishing Company ( Publisher )
Publisher: Useful Knowledge Publishing Company
Place of Publication: New York
Publication Date: 1882
Subject: Fiction -- Catskill (N.Y.)   ( lcsh )
Fiction -- Hudson River Valley (N.Y. and N.J.)   ( lcsh )
Description and travel -- Fiction -- England   ( lcsh )
Folk tales -- 1882   ( rbgenr )
Bldn -- 1882
Genre: Folk tales   ( rbgenr )
novel   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: United States -- New York -- New York
Statement of Responsibility: by Washington Irving.
General Note: Text contained in a red border.
Funding: Preservation and Access for American and British Children's Literature, 1870-1889 (NEH PA-50860-00).
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00049824
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: Baldwin Library of Historical Children's Literature in the Department of Special Collections and Area Studies, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved, Board of Trustees of the University of Florida.
Resource Identifier: aleph - 002232059
notis - ALH2448
oclc - 04648573
lccn - 07009499

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Cover 1
        Cover 2
    Title Page
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Table of Contents
        Page 3
        Page 4
    Rip Van Winkle
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
    The wife
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
        Page 40
    The broken heart
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
        Page 48
    The art of book-making
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
    The widow and her son
        Page 59
        Page 60
        Page 61
        Page 62
        Page 63
        Page 64
        Page 65
        Page 66
        Page 67
        Page 68
    The Boar's Head Tavern, Eastcheap
        Page 69
        Page 70
        Page 71
        Page 72
        Page 73
        Page 74
        Page 75
        Page 76
        Page 77
        Page 78
        Page 79
        Page 80
        Page 81
        Page 82
        Page 83
        Page 84
    The mutability of literature
        Page 85
        Page 86
        Page 87
        Page 88
        Page 89
        Page 90
        Page 91
        Page 92
        Page 93
        Page 94
        Page 95
        Page 96
        Page 97
        Page 98
        Page 99
    Rural funerals
        Page 100
        Page 101
        Page 102
        Page 103
        Page 104
        Page 105
        Page 106
        Page 107
        Page 108
        Page 109
        Page 110
        Page 111
        Page 112
        Page 113
        Page 114
        Page 115
    The specter bridegroom
        Page 116
        Page 117
        Page 118
        Page 119
        Page 120
        Page 121
        Page 122
        Page 123
        Page 124
        Page 125
        Page 126
        Page 127
        Page 128
        Page 129
        Page 130
        Page 131
        Page 132
        Page 133
        Page 134
        Page 135
        Page 136
        Page 137
        Page 138
    Westminster Abbey
        Page 139
        Page 140
        Page 141
        Page 142
        Page 143
        Page 144
        Page 145
        Page 146
        Page 147
        Page 148
        Page 149
        Page 150
        Page 151
        Page 152
        Page 153
        Page 154
        Page 155
        Page 156
        Page 157
        Page 158
        Page 159
        Page 160
        Page 161
        Page 162
        Page 163
        Page 164
        Page 165
        Page 166
        Page 167
        Page 168
        Page 169
        Page 170
        Page 171
        Page 172
        Page 173
        Page 174
        Page 175
        Page 176
        Page 177
        Page 178
        Page 179
    John Bull
        Page 180
        Page 181
        Page 182
        Page 183
        Page 184
        Page 185
        Page 186
        Page 187
        Page 188
        Page 189
        Page 190
        Page 191
        Page 192
        Page 193
        Page 194
        Page 195
    The legend of Sleepy Hollow
        Page 196
        Page 197
        Page 198
        Page 199
        Page 200
        Page 201
        Page 202
        Page 203
        Page 204
        Page 205
        Page 206
        Page 207
        Page 208
        Page 209
        Page 210
        Page 211
        Page 212
        Page 213
        Page 214
        Page 215
        Page 216
        Page 217
        Page 218
        Page 219
        Page 220
        Page 221
        Page 222
        Page 223
        Page 224
        Page 225
        Page 226
        Page 227
        Page 228
        Page 229
        Page 230
        Page 231
        Page 232
        Page 233
        Page 234
        Page 235
        Page 236
        Page 237
        Page 238
    Postscript, found in the handwriting of Mr. Knickerbocker
        Page 239
        Page 240
    Back Cover
        Cover 1
        Cover 2
Full Text

O'l --

The Baldmin Lbrary
,tw F.,







RIP VAN WINKLE ........... ............................ 5
THE W IFE ........... ... .. ......... .... ............... 30
THE BROKEN HEART. ............ ................... 41
ART OF BOOK-MAKING..... ............................ 49
THE WIDOW AND HER SON.... ........................ .. 59
BOAR'S HEAD TAVERN, EASTCHEAP ..................... 69
MUTABILITY OF LITERATURE .............................. 85
RURAL FUNERALS................ ...................... 100
THE SPECTRE BRIDEGROOM ........ .................... 116
WESTMINSTER ABBEY........ ... .. .... ............ 139
STRATFORD-ON-AVON .............. ......... ........ 154
JOHN BULL ........................... .. .. ........... 180
THE LEGEND OF SLEEPY HOLLOW........................ 196



By Woden, God of Saxons,
From whence comes Wensday, that is Wodensday,
Truth is a thing that ever I will keep
Unto thylke day in which I creep into
My sepulchre-
[THE following Tale was found among the papers of the
late Diedrich Knickerbocker, an old gentleman of New
York, who was very curious in the Dutch history of the pro-
vince, and the manners of the descendants from its primi-
tive settlers. His historical researches, however, did not lie
so much among books as among men; for the former are
lamentably scanty on his favorite topics ; whereas he found
the old burghers, and still more, their wives, rich in that
legendary lore, so invaluable to true history. Whenever,
therefore, he happened upon a genuine Dutch family,
snugly shut up in its low-roofed farm-house, under a spread-
ing sycamore, he looked upon it as a little clasped volume of
black-letter, and studied it with the zeal of a book-worm.
The result of all these researches was a history of the pro-
vinoe during the reign of the Dutch governors, which he
published some years since. There have been various
opinions as to the literary character of his work ; and, to
tell the truth, it is not a whit better than it should be. Its
chief merit is its scrupulous accuracy, which, indeed, was a
little questioned on its first appearance, but has since been


completely established; and it is now admitted into all
historical collections, as a book of unquestionable authority.
The old gentleman died shortly after the publication of his
work, and now, that he is dead and gone, it cannot do much
harm to his memory to say that his time might have been
much better employed in weightier labors. He, however,
was apt to ride his hobby his own way ; and though it did
now and then kick up the dust a little in the eyes of his
neighbors, and grieve the spirit of some friends for whom he
felt the truest deference and affection, yet his errors and
follies are remembered "more in sorrow than in anger,"
and it begins to be suspected that he never intended to
injure or offend. But however his memory may be appre-
ciated by critics, it is still held dear among many folk whose
good opinion is well worth having ; particularly by certain
biscuit-bakers, who have gone so far as to imprint his like-
ness on their new-year cakes, and have thus given him a
chance for immortality, almost equal to the being stamped
on a Waterloo medal, or a Queen Anne's farthing.]

WHOEVER has made a voyage up the Hudson
must remember the Kaatskill mountains. They are
a dismembered branch of the great Appalachian
family, and are seen away to the west of the river,
swelling up to a noble height, and lording it over
thu surrounding country. Every change of season,
every change of weather, indeed every hour of the
day, produces some change in the magical hues and
shapes of these mountains; and they are regarded
by all the good wives, far and near, as perfect bar-
ometers. When the weather is fair and settled, they
are clothed in blue and purple, and print their bold
outlines on the clear evening sky; but sometimes,
when the rest of the landscape is cloudless, they
will gather a hood of gray vapors about their sum-


mits, which, in the last rays of the setting sun, will
glow and light up like a crown of glory.
At the foot of these fairy mountains, the voyager
may have described the light smoke curling up from
a village, whose shingle roofs gleam among the trees,
just where the blue tints of the upland melt away
into the fresh green of the nearer landscape. It is
a little village of great antiquity, having been founded
by some of the Dutch colonists, in the early times
of the province, just about the beginning of the
government of the good Peter Stuyvesant (may he
rest in peace!), and there were some of the houses of
the original settlers standing within a few years,
built of small yellow bricks brought from Holland,
having latticed windows and gable fronts, surmount-
ed with weathercocks.
In that same village, and in one of these very
houses (which, to tell the precise truth, was sadly
time-worn and weather-beaten), there lived many
years since, while the country was yet a province
of Great Britain, a simple, good-natured fellow of
the name of Rip Van Winkle. He was a descend-
ant of the Van Winkles who figured so gallantly in
the chivalrous days of Peter Stuyvesant, and ac-
companied him to the siege of Fort Christina. He
inherited, however, but little of the martial charac-
ter of his ancestors. I have observed that he was a
simple, good-natured man; he was, moreover, a kind
neighbor, and an obedient henpecked husband. In-
deed, to the latter circumstance might be owing
that meekness of spirit which gained him such uni-
versal popularity; for those men are most apt to be


obsequious and conciliating abroad who are under
the discipline of shrews at home. Their tempers,
doubtless, are rendered pliant and malleable in the
fiery furnace of domestic tribulation, and a curtain
lecture is worth all the sermons in the world for
teaching the virtues of patience and long-suffering.
A termagant wife may, therefore, in some respects,
be considered a tolerable blessing; and if so, Rip
Van Winkle was thrice blessed.
Certain it is that he was a great favorite among
all the good wives of the village, who, as usual with
the amiable sex, took his part in all family squab-
bles, and never failed, whenever they talked those
matters over in their evening gossipings, to lay all
the blame on Dame Van Winkle. The children of
the village, too, would shout with joy whenever he
approached. He assisted at their sports, made their
playthings, taught them to fly kites and shoot mar-
bles, and told them long stories of ghosts, witches,
and Indians. Whenever he went dodging about the
village, he was surrounded by a troop of them hang-
ing on his skirts, clambering on his back, and play-
ing a thousand tricks on him with impunity; and
not a dog would bark at him throughout the neigh-
The great error in Rip's composition was an insu-
perable aversion to all kinds of profitable labor. It
could not be from the want of assiduity or persever-
ance; for he would sit on a wet rock, with a rod as
long and heavy as a Tartar's lance, and fish all day
without a murmur, even though he should not be
encouraged by a single nibble. He would carry a


fowling-piece on his shoulder for hours together,
trudging through woods and swamps, and up hill
and down dale to shoot a few squirrels or wild
pigeons. He would never refuse to assist a neigh-
bor even in the roughest toil, and was a foremost
man at all country frolics for husking Indian corn or
building stone fences. The women of the village,
too, used to employ him to run their errands, and to
do such little odd jobs as their less obliging husbands
would not do for them;-in a word, Rip was ready
to attend to anybody's business but his own; but as
to doing family duty, and keeping his farm in or-
der, he found it impossible.
In fact, he declared it was of no use to work on
his farm; it was the most pestilent little piece of
ground in the whole country; everything about it
went wrong, and would go wrong in spite of him.
His fences were continually falling to pieces; his
cow would either go astray or get among the cab-
bages; weeds were sure to grow quicker in his fields
than anywhere else; the rain always made a point of
setting in just as he had some out-door work to do;
so that though his patrimonial estate had dwindled
away under his management, acre by acre, until
there was little more left than a mere patch of In-
dian corn and potatoes, yet it was the worst condi-
tioned farm in the neighborhood.
His children, too, were as ragged and wild as if they
belonged to nobody. His son Rip, an urchin begot-
ten in his own likeness, promised to inherit the hab-
its with the old clothes of his father. He was gen-
erally seen trooping like a colt at his mother's heels,


equipped in a pair of his father's cast-off galligas-
kins, which he had much ado to hold up with one
hand, as a fine lady does her train in bad weather.
Rip Van Winkle, however, was one of those happy
mortals, of foolish, well-oiled dispositions, who take
the world easy, eat white bread or brown, whichever
can be got with least thought or trouble, and would
rather starve on a penny than work for a pound. If
left to himself, he would have whistled life away in
perfect contentment; but his wife kept continually
dinning in his ears about his idleness, his careless-
ness, and the ruin he was bringing on his family.
*Morning, noon and night, her tongue was in-
cessantly going, and everything he said or did was
sure to produce a torrent of household eloquence
Rip had but one way of replying to all lectures of
the kind, and that, by frequent use, had grown into
a habit. He shrugged his shoulders, shook his
head, cast up his eyes, but said nothing. This, how-
ever, always provoked a fresh volley from his wife,
so that he was fain to draw off his forces, and take
to the outside of the house-the only side which, in
truth, belongs to a henpecked husband.
Rip's sole domestic adherent was his dog Wolf,
who was as much henpecked as his master; for
Dame Van Winkle regarded them as companions in
idleness, and even looked upon Wolf with an evil
eye, as the cause of his master's going so often
astray. True it is, in all points of spirit befitting an
honorable dog, he was as courageous an animal as
ever scoured the woods-but what courage can
withstand the ever-during and all-besetting terrors


of a woman's tongue? The moment Wolf entered
the house, his crest fell, his tail drooped to the
ground or curled between his legs, he sneaked about
with a gallows air, casting many a sidelong glance at
Dame Van Winkle, and at the least flourish of a
broomstick or ladle he would fly to the door with
yelping precipitation.
Times grew worse and worse with Rip Van Win-
kle, as years of matrimony rolled on: a tart temper
never mellows with age, and a sharp tongue is the
only edge tool that grows keener with constant use.
For a long while he used to console himself when
driven from home, by frequenting a kind of per-
petual club of the sages, philosophers, and other idle
personages of the village, which held its sessions on
a bench before a small inn, designated by a rubi-
cund portrait of his majesty George the Third.
Here they used to sit in the shade, of a long lazy
summer's day, talking listlessly over village gossip,
or telling endless sleepy stories about nothing. But
it would have been worth any statesman's money to
have heard the profound discussions which some-
times took place, when by chance an old newspaper
fell into their hands from some passing traveler.
How solemnly they would listen to the contents, as
drawled out by Derrick Van Bummel, the school-
master, a dapper, learned little man, who was not to
be daunted by the most gigantic word in the dic-
tionary; and how sagely they would deliberate upon
public events some months after they had taken
The opinions of this junto were completely con-


trolled by Nicholas Vedder, a patriarch of the
village, and landlord of the inn, at the door of
which he took his seat from morning till night, just
moving sufficiently to avoid the sun, and keep in
the shade of a large tree; so that the neighbors could
tell the hour by his movements as accurately as by a
sun-dial. It is true, he was rarely heard to speak,
but smoked his pipe incessantly. His adherents,
however (for every great man has his adherents),
perfectly understood him, and knew how to gather
his opinions. When anything that was read or
related displeased him, he was observed to smoke
his pipe vehemently, and to send forth short, fre-
quent, and angry puffs; but when pleased, he would
inhale the smoke slowly and tranquilly, and emit
it in light and placid clouds, and sometimes taking
the pipe from his mouth, and letting the fragrant
vapor curl about his nose, would gravely nod his
head in token of perfect approbation.
From even this stronghold the unlucky Rip was
at length routed by his termagant wife, who would
suddenly break in upon the tranquillity of the as-
semblage, and call the members all to nought; nor
was that august personage, Nicholas Vedder himself,
sacred from the daring tongue of this terrible virago,
who charged him outright with encouraging her
husband in habits of idleness.
Poor Rip was at last reduced almost to despair,
and his only alternative to escape from the labor of
the farm and the clamor of his wife was to take gun
in hand and stroll away into the woods. Here he
would sometimes seat himself at the foot of a


tree, and share the contents of his wallet with Wolf,
with whom he sympathized as a fellow-sufferer in
persecution. "Poor Wolf," he would say, "thy
mistress leads thee a dog's life of it; but never mind,
my lad, whilst I live, thou shalt never want a friend
to stand by thee!" Wolf would wag his tail, look
wistfully in his master's face, and if dogs can feel
pity, I verily believe he reciprocated the sentiment
with all his heart.
In a long ramble of the kind, on a fine autumnal
day, Rip had unconsciously scrambled to one of the
highest parts of the Kaatskill mountains. He was
after his favorite sport of squirrel-shooting, and the
still solitudes had echoed and re-echoed with the
reports of his gun. Panting and fatigued, he threw
himself, late in the afternoon, on a green knoll
covered with mountain herbage, that crowned the
brow of a precipice. From an opening between the
trees he could overlook all the lower country for
many a mile of rich woodland. He saw at a distance
the lordly Hudson, far, far below him, moving on
its silent but majestic course, with the reflection of
a purple cloud, or the sail of a lagging bark, here
and there sleeping on its glassy bosom, and at last
losing itself in the blue highlands.
On the other side he looked down into a deep
mountain glen, wild, lonely, and shagged, the bottom
filled with fragments from the impending cliffs, and
scarcely lighted by the reflected rays of the setting
sun. For some time Rip lay musing on this scene;
evening was gradually advancing; the mountains
began to throw their long blue shadows over the


valleys; he saw that it would be dark long before
he could reach the village; and he heaved a heavy
sigh when he thought of encountering the terrors of
Dame Van Winkle.
As he was about to descend, he heard a voice from
a distance hallooing, "Rip Van Winkle I Rip Van
Winkle!" He looked around, but could see noth-
ing but a crow winging its solitary flight across the
mountain. He thought his fancy must have de-
ceived him, and turned again to descend, when he
heard the same cry ring through the still evening
air, "Rip Van Winkle! Rip Van Winkle!"-at the
same time Wolf bristled up his back, and giving a
low growl, skulked to his master's side, looking fear-
fully down into the glen. Rip now felt a vague
apprehension stealing over him: he looked anxiously
in the same direction, and perceived a strange figure
slowly toiling up the rocks, and bending under the
weight of something he carried on his back. He was
surprised to see any human being in this lonely and
unfrequented place, but supposing it to be some one
of the neighborhood in need of his assistance, he
hastened down to yield it.
On nearer approach he was still more surprised at
the singularity of the stranger's appearance. He
was a short square-built old fellow, with thick bushy
hair, and a grizzled beard. His dress was of the
antique Dutch fashion-a cloth jerkin strapped
round the waist-several pair of breeches, the outer
one of ample volume, decorated with rows of but-
tons down the sides, and bunches at the knees. He
bore on his shoulders a stout keg, that seemed full


of liquor, and made signs for Rip to approach and
assist him with the load. Though rather shy and
distrustful of this new acquaintance, Rip complied
with his usual alacrity, and mutually relieving each
other they clambered up a narrow gully, apparently
the dry bed of a mountain torrent. As they as-
cended, Rip every now and then heard long rolling
peals, like distant thunder, that seemed to issue out
of a deep ravine, or rather cleft between lofty rocks,
towards which their rugged path conducted. He
paused for an instant, but supposing it to be the mut-
tering of one of those transient thunder showers
which often take place in mountain heights, he pro-
ceeded. Passing through the ravine, they came to
a hollow, like a small amphitheater, surrounded by
perpendicular precipices, over the brinks of which
impending trees shot their branches, so that you
only caught glimpses of the azure sky and the bright
evening cloud. During the whole time, Rip and his
companion had labored on in silence, for though the
former marveled greatly what could be the object of
carrying a keg of liquor up this wild mountain, yet
there was something strange and incomprehensible
about the unknown that inspired awe and checked
On entering the amphitheater, new objects of won-
der presented themselves. On a level spot in the
center was a company of odd-looking personages
playing at nine-pins. They were dressed in a quaint
outlandish fashion; some wore short doublets, others
jerkins, with long knives in their belts, and most of
them had enormous breeches, of similar style with


that of the guide's. Their visages, too, were pecu-
liar: one had a large head, broad face, and small
piggish eyes; the face of another seemed to consist
entirely of nose, and was surmounted by a white
sugar loaf hat, set off with a little red cock's tail.
They all had beards, of various shapes and colors.
There was one who seemed to be the commander.
He was a stout old gentleman, with a weather-beaten
countenance; he wore a laced doublet, broad belt
and hanger, high crowned hat and feather, red
stockings, and high-heeled shoes, with roses in them.
The whole group reminded Rip of the figures in an
old Flemish painting in the parlor of Dominie Van
Schaick, the village parson, and which had been
brought over from Holland at the time of the settle-
"What seemed particularly odd to Rip was, that
though these folks were evidently amusing them-
selves, yet they maintained the gravest faces, the
most mysterious silence, and were, withal, the most
melancholy party of pleasure he had ever witnessed.
Nothing interrupted the stillness of the scene but
the noise of the balls, which, whenever they were
rolled, echoed along the mountains like rumbling
peals of thunder.
As Rip and his companion approached them, they
suddenly desisted from their play, and stared at him
with such a fixed statue-like gaze, and srch strange,
uncouth, lack-luster countenances, that his heart
turned within .him, and his knees smote together.
His companion now emptied the contents of the keg
into large flagons, and made signs to him to wait


upon the company. He obeyed with fear and trem-
bling; they quaffed the liquor in profound silence,
and then returned to their game.
By degrees Rip's awe and apprehension subsided.
He even ventured, when no eye was fixed upon him,
to taste the beverage, which he found had much of
the flavor of excellent Hollands. He was naturally
a thirsty soul, and was soon tempted to repeat the
draught. One taste provoked another, and he reiter-
ated his visits to the flagon so often that at length
his senses were overpowered, his eyes swam in his
head, his head gradually declined, and he fell into a
deep sleep.
On waking he found himself on the green knoll
from whence he had first seen the old man of the
glen. He rubbed his eyes-it was a bright sunny
morning. The birds were hopping and twittering
among the bushes, and the eagle was wheeling aloft,
and breasting the pure mountain breeze. Surely,"
thought Rip, "I have not slept here all night." He
recalled the occurrences before he fell asleep. The
strange man with the keg of liquor-the mountain
ravine-the wild retreat among the rocks-the woe-
begone party at nine-pins-the flagon-" Oh! that
wicked flagon!" thought Rip-" what excuse shall I
make to Dame Van Winkle?"
He looked round for his gun, but in place of the
clean well-oiled fowling-piece, he found an old fire-
lock lying by him, the barrel incrusted with rust, the
lock falling off, and the stock worm-eaten. He now
suspected that the grave roysters of the mountain
had put a trick upon him, and having dosed him


with liquor, had robbed him of his gun. Wolf, too,
had disappeared, but he might have strayed away
after a squirrel or partridge. He whistled after him,
and shouted his name, but all in vain; the echoes re-
peated his whistle and shout, but no dog was to be
He determined to revisit the scene of the last even-
ing's gambol, and if he met with any of the party to
demand his dog and gun. As he rose to walk, he
found himself stiff in the joints, and wanting in his
usual activity. "These mountain beds do not agree
with me," thought Rip, "and if this frolic should
lay me up with a fit of the rheumatism, I shall have
a blessed time with Dame Van Winkle." With some
difficulty he got down into the glen; he found the
gully up which he and his companion had ascended
the preceding evening; but to his astonishment a
mountain stream was now foaming down it, leaping
from rock to rock, and filling the glen with babbling
murmurs. He, however, made shift to scramble up
its sides, working his toilsome way through thickets
of birch, sassafras, and witch-hazel; and sometimes
tripped up or entangled by the wild grape-vines that
twisted their coils and tendrils from tree to tree, and
spread a kind of network in his path.
At length he reached to where the ravine had
opened through the cliffs to the amphitheater; but
no traces of such opening remained. The rocks
presented a high impenetrable wall, over which the
torrent came tumbling in a sheet of feathery foam,
and fell into a broad deep basin, black from the
shadows of the surrounding forest. Here, then,


poor Rip was brought to a stand. He again called
and whistled after his dog; he was only answered
by the cawing of a flock of idle crows, sporting high
in air about a dry tree that overhung a sunny preci-
pice; and who secure in their elevation, seemed to
look down and scoff at the poor man's perplexities.
What was to be done? The morning was passing
away, and Rip felt famished for want of his break-
fast. He grieved to give up his dog and gun; he
dreaded to meet his wife; but it would not do to
starve among the mountains. He shook his head,
shouldered his rusty firelock, and with a heart full
of trouble and anxiety turned his steps homeward.
As he approached the village he met a number of
people, but none whom he knew, which somewhat
surprised him, for he had thought himself acquainted
with every one in the country round. Their dress,
too, was of a different fashion from that to which
he was accustomed. They all stared at him with
equal marks of surprise, and whenever they cast
eyes upon him, invariably stroked their chins. The
constant recurrence of this gesture induced Rip in-
voluntarily, to do the same, when to his astonish-
ment he found his beard had grown a foot long
He had now entered the skirts of the village. A
troop of strange children ran at his heels, hooting
after him, and pointing at his gray beard. The dogs,
too, not one of which he recognized for an old ac-
quaintance, barked at him as he passed. The very
village was altered; it was larger and more populous.
There were rows of houses which he had never seen
before, and those which had been his familiar haunts


had disappeared. Strange names were over the
doors-strange faces at the windows-everything
was strange. His mind now misgave him; he be-
gan to doubt whether both he and the world
around him were not bewitched. Surely this was
his native village, which he had left but a day be-
fore. There stood the Kaatskill mountains-there
ran the silver Hudson at a distance there was
every hill and dale precisely as it had always
been.-Rip was sorely perplexed,-" That flagon
last night," thought he, "has addled my poor head
It was with some difficulty that he found the way
to his own house, which he approached with silent
awe, expecting every moment to hear the shrill
voice of Dame Van Winkle. He found the house
gone to decay-the roof fallen in, the windows shat-
tered, and the doors off the hinges. A half-starved
dog, that looked like Wolf, was skulking about it.
Rip called him by name, but the cur snarled,
showed his teeth, and passed on. This was an un-
kind cut indeed.-" My very dog," sighed poor Rip,
"has forgotten me!"
He entered the house, which, to tell the truth,
Dame Van Winkle had always kept in neat order.
It was empty, forlorn, and apparently abandoned.
This desolateness overcame all his connubial fears-
he called loudly for his wife and children-the lone-
ly chambers rang for a moment with his voice, and
then all again was silence.
He now hurried forth, and hastened to his old re-
sort, the village inn-but it too was gone. A large


rickety wooden building stood in its place, with
great gaping windows, some of them broken, and
mended with old hats and petticoats, and over the
door was painted, "The Union Hotel, by Jonathan
Doolittle." Instead of the great tree that used to
shelter the quiet little Dutch inn of yore, there now
was reared a tall naked pole, with something on the
top that looked like a red night-cap, and from it was
fluttering a flag, on which was a singular assemblage
of stars and stripes-all this was strange and incom-
prehensible. He recognized on the sign, however,
the ruby face of King George, under which he had
smoked so many a peaceful pipe, but even this was
singularly metamorphosed. The red coat was changed
for one of blue and buff, a sword was held in the
hand instead of a scepter, the head was decorated
with a cocked hat, and underneath was painted in
large characters, GENERAL WASHINGTON.
There was, as usual, a crowd of folk about the
door, but none that Rip recollected. The very char-
acter of the people seemed changed. There was a
busy, bustling, disputatious tone about it, instead of
the accustomed phlegm and drowsy tranquillity.
He looked in vain for the sage Nicholas Vedder,
with his broad face, double chin, and fair long pipe,
uttering clouds of tobacco smoke instead of idle
speeches; or Van Bummel, the schoolmaster, doling
forth the contents of an ancient newspaper. In
place of these, a lean bilious-looking fellow, with his
pockets full of handbills, was haranguing vehement-
ly about rights of citizens-election-members of
Congress-liberty-Bunker's hill-heroes of seventy-


six-and other words that were a perfect Babylon
ish jargon to the bewildered Van Winkle.
The appearance of Rip, with his long grizzled
beard, his rusty fowling-piece, his uncouth dress,
and the army of women and children that had gath-
ered at his heels, soon attracted the attention of the
tavern politicians. They crowded round him, eying
him from head to foot with great curiosity. The
orator bustled up to him, and, drawing him partly
aside, inquired on which side he voted. Rip stared
in vacant stupidity. Another short but busy little
fellow pulled him by the arm, and, rising on tiptoe,
inquired in his ear whether he was Federal or Dem-
ocrat. Rip was equally at a loss to comprehend the
question; when a knowing, self-important old gen-
tleman, in a sharp cocked hat, made his way through
the crowd, putting them to the right and left with
his elbows as he passed, and planting himself before
Van Winkle, with one arm akimbo, the other rest-
ing on his cane, his keen eyes and sharp hat pene-
trating, as it were, into his very soul, demanded in
an austere tone what brought him to the election
with a gun on his shoulder, and a mob at his heels,
and whether he meant to breed a riot in the village.
"Alas! gentlemen," cried 14ip, somewhat dis-
mayed, "I am a poor quiet man, a native of the
place, and a loyal subject of the King, God bless
him I"
Here a general shout burst from the bystanders-
"A tory! a toryl a spy! a refugees hustle him!
away with him!"
It was with great difficulty that the self-important


man in the cocked hat restored order; and, having
assumed a tenfold austerity of brow, demanded
again of the unknown culprit what he came there
for, and whom he was seeking. The poor man
humbly assured him that he meant no harm, but
merely came there in search of some of his neigh-
bors, who used to keep about the tavern.
"Well-who are they?-name them."
Rip bethought himself a moment, and inquired,
"Where's Nicholas Vedder?"
There was a silence for a little while, when an old
man replied, in a thin, piping voice, "Nicholas Ved-
der? why, he is dead and gone these eighteen years!
There was a wooden tombstone in the churchyard
that used to tell all about him, but that's rotten and
gone too."
Where's Brom Dutcher?"
Oh, he went off to the army in the beginning of
the war; some say he was killed in the storming of
Stony Point-others say he was drowned in the
squall at the foot of Anthony's Nose. I don't know
-he never came back again."
"Where's Van Bummel, the schoolmaster?"
"He went off to the wars, too; was a great mili-
tia general, and is now in Congress."
Rip's heart died away at hearing of these sad
changes in his home and friends, and finding him-
self thus alone in the world. Every answer puzzled
him, too, by treating of such enormous lapses of
time, and of matters which he could not understand
-war-Congress-Stony Point!-he had no cour-
age to ask after any more friends, but cried out in


despair, "Does nobody here know Rip Van
"Oh, 4ip Van Winkle!" exclaimed two or three.
"Oh, to be sure that's Rip Van Winkle yonder,
leaning against the tree."
Rip looked, and beheld a precise counterpart of
himself as he went up the mountain; apparently as
lazy, and certainly as ragged. The poor fellow was
now completely confounded. He doubted his own
identity, and whether he was himself or another
man. In the midst of his bewilderment the man in
the cocked hat demanded who he was, and what was
his name?
"God knows!" exclaimed he, at his wit's end;
"I'm not myself-I'm somebody else-that's me
yonder-no-that's somebody else' got into my shoes
-I was myself last night, but I fell asleep on the
mountain, and they've changed my gun, and every-
thing's changed, and I'm changed, and I can't tell
what's my name or who I aml"
The bystanders began now to look at each other,
nod, wink significantly, and tap their fingers against
their foreheads. There was a whisper, also, about
securing the gun, and keeping the old fellow from
doing mischief ; at the very suggestion of which,
the self-important man with the cocked hat retired
with some precipitation. At this critical moment a
fresh, comely woman passed through the throng to
get a peep at the gray-bearded man. She had a
chubby child in her arms, which, frightened at his
looks, began to cry. "Hush, Rip," cried she,
"hush, you little fool; the old man won't hurt



you." The name of the child, the air of the moth-
er, the tone of her voice, all awakened a train of rec-
ollections in his mind.
"What is your name, my good woman?" asked
"Judith Gardenier."
"And your father's name?"
"Ah, poor man, his name was Rip Van Winkle;
it's twenty years since he went away from home
with his gun, and never has been heard of since-his
dog came home without him; but whether he shot
himself, or was carried away by the Indians, nobody
can tell. I was then but a little girl."
Rip had but one question more to ask; but he put
it with a faltering voice.
Where's your mother?"
Oh, she too had died but a short time since; she
broke a blood-vessel in a fit of passion at a New
England peddler.
There was a drop of comfort, at least, in this in-
telligence. The honest man could contain himself
no longer. He caught his daughter and her child in
his arms. "I am your father!" cried he-"young
Rip Van Winkle oncd-old Rip Van Winkle now!
-Does nobody know poor Rip Van Winkle?"
All stood amazed until an old woman, tottering
out from among the crowd, put her hand to her
brow, and, peering under it in his face for a mo-
ment, exclaimed, "Sure enough! it is Rip Van Win-
kle-it is himself. Welcome home again, old neigh-
bor. Why, where have you been these twenty long


Rip's story was soon told, for the whole twenty
years had been to him but as one night. The neigh-
bors stared when they heard it; some were seen to
wink at each other, and put their tongues in their
cheeks; and the self-important man in the cocked
hat, who, when the alarm was over, had returned to
tho field, screwed down the corners of his mouth,
and shook his head-upon which there was a general
shaking of the head throughout the assemblage.
It was determined, however, to take the opinion
of old Peter Vanderdonk, who was seen slowly ad-
vancing up the road. Hie was a descendant of the
historian of that name, who wrote one of the earli-
est accounts of the province. Peter was the most
ancient inhabitant of the village, and well versed in
all the wonderful events and traditions of the neigh-
borhood. He recollected Rip at once, and corrobo-
rated his story in the most satisfactory manner. He
assured the company that it was a fact, handed down
from his ancestor the historian, that the Kaatskill
mountains had always been haunted by strange be-
ings. That it was affirmed that the great Hendrick
Hudson, the first discoverer of the river and coun-
try, kept a kind of vigil there every twenty years
with his crew of the Half-Moon, being permitted in
this way to revisit the scenes of his enterprise, and
keep a guardian eye upon the river and the great
city called by his name. That his father had once
seen them in their old Dutch dresses playing at nine-
pins in a hollow of the mountain; and that he him-
self had heard, one summer afternoon, the sound of
their balls, like distant peals of thunder.



To make a long story short, the company broke
up, and returned to the more important concerns of
the election. Rip's daughter took him home to live
with her; she had a snug, well-furnished house, and
a stout, cheery farmer for a husband, whom Rip
recollected for one of the urchins that used to climb
upon his back. As to Rip's son and heir, who was
the ditto of himself, seen leaning against the tree, he
was employed to work on the farm; but evinced a
hereditary disposition to attend to anything else but
his business.
Rip now resumed his old walks and habits; he
soon found many of his former cronies, though all
rather the worse for the wear and tear of time; and
preferred making friends among the rising genera-
tion, with whom he soon grew into great favor.
Having nothing to do at home, and being arrived
at that happy age when a man can do nothing with
impunity, he took his place once more on the bench
at the inn door, and was reverenced as one of the
patriarchs of the village and a chronicle of the old
times "before the war." It was some time before
he could get into the regular track of gossip, or
could be made to comprehend the strange events
that had taken place during his torpor. How that
there had been a revolutionary war-that the coun-
try had thrown off the yoke of old England-and
that, instead of being a subject of his majesty George
the Third, he was now a free citizen of the United
States. Rip, in fact, was no politician; the changes
of states and empires made but little impression on
him; but there was one species of despotism under



which he had long groaned, and that was-petticoat
government. Happily, that was at an end; he had
got his neck out of the yoke of matrimony, and
could go in and out whenever he pleased without
dreading the tyranny of Dame Van Winkle. When-
ever her name was mentioned, however, he shook
his head, shrugged his shoulders, and cast up his
eyes; which might pass either for an expression of
resignation to his fate or joy at his deliverance.
He used to tell his story to every stranger that ar-
rived at Mr. Doolittle's hotel. He was observed, at
first, to vary on some points every time he told it,
which was doubtless owing to his having so recently
awaked. It at last settled down precisely to the tale
I have related, and not a man, woman, or child in
the neighborhood but knew it by heart. Some al-
ways pretended to doubt the reality of it, and insist-
ed that Rip had been out of his head, and that this
was one point on which he always remained flighty.
The old Dutch inhabitants, however, almost univer-
sally gave it full credit. Even to this day they never
hear a thunder-storm of a summer afternoon about
the Kaatskill, but they say Hendrick Hudson and
his crew are at their game of nine-pins; and it is a
common wish of all henpecked husbands in the
neighborhood, when life hangs heavy on their hands,
that they might have a quieting draught out of Rip
Van Winkle's flagon.

NoT. The foregoing tale, one would suspect, had been
suggested to Mr. Knickerbocker by a little German supersti-
tion about the Emperor Frederick der Rothbart and the Kypp-


hauser mountain; the subjoined note, however, which he
had appended to the tale, shows that it is an absolute fact,
narrated with his usual fidelity.
"The story of Rip Van Winkle may seem incredible to
many, but nevertheless I give it my full belief, for I know the
vicinity of our old Dutch settlements to have been very sub-
ject to marvelous events and appearances. Indeed, I have
heard many stranger stories than this in the villages along
the Hudson, all of which were too well authenticated to ad-
mit of a doubt. I have even talked with Rip Van Winkle
myself, who, when last I saw him, was a very venerable old
man, and so perfectly rational and consistent on every other
point, that I think no conscientious person could refuse to
take this into the bargain; nay, I have seen a certificate on
the subject taken before a country justice and signed with a
cross, in the justice's own handwriting. The story, therefore,
is beyond the possibility of doubt."



The treasures of the deep are not so precious
As are the concealed comforts of a man
Lock'd up in woman's love. I scent the air
Of blessings, when I come but near the house.
What a delicious breath marriage sends forth-
The violet bed's not sweeterI
1 HAVE often had occasion to remark the fortitude
with which women sustain the most overwhelming
reverses of fortune. Those disasters which break
down the spirit of a man, and prostrate him in the
dust, seem to call forth all the energies of the softer
sex, and give such intrepidity and elevation to their
character, that at times it approaches to sublimity.
Nothing can be more touching, than to behold a soft
and tender female, who had been all weakness and
dependence, and alive to every trivial roughness,
while threading the prosperous paths of life, sud-
denly rising in mental force to be the comforter and
supporter of her husband under misfortune, and
abiding with unshrinking firmness, the bitterest
blasts of adversity.
As the vine, which has long twined its graceful
foliage about the oak, and been lifted by it into sun-
shine, will, when the hardy plant is rifted by the
thunderbolt, cling round it with its caressing ten-
drils, and bind up its shattered boughs; so is it
beautifully ordered by Providence, that woman,


who is the mere dependant and ornament of man in
his happier hours, should be his stay and solace
when smitten with sudden calamity; winding her-
self into the rugged recesses of his nature, tenderly
supporting the drooping head, and binding up the
broken heart.
I was once congratulating a friend, who had
around him a blooming family, knit together in the
strongest affection. "I can wish you no better lot,"
said he, with enthusiasm, "than to have a wife and
children. If you are prosperous, there they are to
share your prosperity; if otherwise, there they are
to comfort you." And, indeed, I have observed that
a married man, falling into misfortune, is more apt
to retrieve his situation in the world than a single
one; partly because he is more stimulated to exer-
tion by the necessities of the helpless and beloved
beings who depend upon him for subsistence; but
chiefly because his spirits are soothed and relieved
by domestic endearments, and his self-respect kept
alive by finding, that though all abroad is darkness
and humiliation, yet there is still a little world of
love at home, of which he is the monarch. Where-
as, a single man is apt to run to waste and self-
neglect; to fancy himself lonely and abandoned, and
his heart to fall to ruin, like some deserted mansion,
for want of an inhabitant.
These observations call to mind a little domestic
story, of which I was once a witness. My intimate
friend, Leslie, had married a beautiful and accom-
plished girl, who had been brought up in the midst
of fashionable life. She had, it is true, no fortune,


but that of my friend was ample; and he delighted
in the anticipation of indulging her in every elegant
pursuit, and administering to those delicate tastes
and fancies that spread a kind of witchery about
the sex.-" Her life," said he, "shall be like a fairy
The very difference in their characters produced
a harmonious combination; he was of a romantic
and somewhat serious cast; she was all life and
gladness. I have often noticed the mute rapture
with which he would gaze upon her in company, of
which her sprightly powers made her the delight;
and how, in the midst of applause, her eye would
still turn to him, as if there alone she sought favor
and acceptance. When leaning on his arm, her
slender form contrasted finely with his tall, manly
person. The fond confiding air with which she
looked up to him seemed to call forth a flush of tri-
umphant pride and cherishing tenderness, as if he
doated on his lovely burden for its very helplessness.
Never did a couple set forward on a flowery path of
early and well-suited marriage with a fairer prospect
of felicity.
It was the misfortune of my friend, however, to
have embarked his property in large speculations;
and he had not been married many months when,
by a succession of sudden disasters, it was swept
from him, and le found himself reduced to almost
penury. For a time he kept his situation to him-
self, and went about with a haggard countenance
and a breaking heart. His life was but a protracted
agony; and what rendered it more insupportable


was the necessity of keeping up a smile in the pres-
ence of his wife; for he could not bring himself to
overwhelm her with the news. She saw, however,
with the quick eyes of affection, that all was not well
with him. She marked his altered looks and stifled
sighs, and was not to be deceived by his sickly and
vapid attempts at cheerfulness. She tasked all her
sprightly powers and tender blandishments to win
him back to happiness; but she only drove the ar-
row deeper into his soul. The more he saw cause
to love her, the more torturing was the thought that
he was soon to make her wretched. A little while,
thought he, and the smile will banish from that
cheek-the song will die away from those lips-the
luster of those eyes will be quenched with sorrow-
and the happy heart which now beats lightly in
that bosom will be weighed down, like mine, by the
cares and miseries of the world.
At length he came to me one day, and related his
whole situation in a tone of the deepest despair.
When I had heard him through, I inquired, "Does
your wife know all this?" At the question he burst
into an agony of tears. "For God's sake!" cried
he, "if you have any pity on me, don't mention my
wife; it is the thought of her that drives me almost
to madness!"
"And why not?" said I. "She must know it
sooner or later: you cannot keep it long from her,
and the intelligence may break upon her in a more
startling manner than if imparted by yourself; for
the accents of those we love soften the harshest tid-
ings. Besides, you are depriving yourself of the


comforts of her sympathy: and not merely that, but
also endangering the only bond that can keep hearts
together-an unreserved community of thought and
feeling. She will soon perceive that something is
secretly preying upon your mind; and true love will
not brook reserve: it feels undervalued and out.
raged, when even the sorrows of those it loves are
concealed from it."
"Oh, but my friend! to think what a blow I am
to give to all her future prospects-how I am to
strike her very soul to the earth, by telling her that
her husband is a beggar!-that she is to forego all
the elegancies of life-all the pleasures of society-
to shrink with me into indigence and obscurity! To
tell her that I have dragged her down from the
sphere in which she might have continued to move
in constant brightness-the light of every eye-the
admiration of every heart!-How can she bear pov-
erty? She has been brought up in all the refine-
ments of opulence. How can she bear neglect?
She has been the idol of society. Oh, it will break
her heart-it will break her heart!"
I saw his grief was eloquent, and I let it have its
flow; for sorrow relieves itself by words. When his
paroxysm had subsided, and he had relapsed into
moody silence, I resumed the subject gently, and
urged him to break his situation at once to his wife.
He shook his head mournfully, but positively.
"But how are you to keep it from her? It is
necessary she should know it, that you may take the
steps proper to the alteration of your circumstances.
You must change your style of living-nay," ob.


serving a pang to pass across his countenance,
"don't let that afflict you. I am sure you have
never placed your happiness in outward show-you
have yet friends, warm friends, who will not think
the worse of you for being less splendidly lodged;
and surely it does not require a palace to be happy
with Mary-" "I could be happy with her," cried
he, convulsively, "in a hovel!-I could go down
with her into poverty and the dust!--I could--I
could-God bless her!-God bless her!" cried he,
bursting into a transport of grief and tenderness.
"And believe me, my friend," said I, stepping up,
and grasping him warmly by the hand, "believe me,
she can be the same with you. Ay, more: it will
be a source of pride and triumph to her-it will
call forth all the latent energies and fervent sympa-
thies of her nature; for she will rejoice to prove
that she loves you for yourself. There is in every
true woman's heart a spark of heavenly fire, which
lies dormant in the broad daylight of prosperity;
but which kindles up, and beams and blazes in the
dark hour of adversity. No man knows what the
wife of his bosom is-no man knows what a minis-
tering angel she is-until he has gone with her
through the fiery trials of this world."
There was something in the earnestness of my
manner, and the figurative style of my language,
that caught the excited imagination of Leslie. I
knew the auditor I had to deal with; and following
up the impression I had made, I finished by per-
suading him to go home and unburden his sad
heart to his wife.


I must confess, :1.! I :11i i,. all I have said,
I felt some little solicitude for the result. Who can
calculate on the fortitude of one whose whole life
has been a round of pleasures? Her gay spirits
might revolt at the dark downward path of low hu-
mility, suddenly pointed out before her, and might
cling to the sunny regions in which they had hither.
to reveled. Besides, ruin in fashionable life is ac-
companied by so many ._-ii;i_ mortifications, to
which, in other ranks, it is a stranger.-In short, I
could not meet Leslie the next morning without
trepidation. He had made the disclosure.
"And how did she bear it?"
"Like an angel! It seemed rather to be a relief
to her mind, for she threw her arms around my
neck, and asked if this was all that had lately made
me unhappy.-But, poor girl," added he, "she can-
not realize the change we must undergo. She has
no idea of poverty but in the abstract: she has only
read of it in poetry, where it is allied to love.
She feels as yet no privation; she suffers no loss of
accustomed conveniences nor elegances. When we
come practically to experience its sordid cares, its
paltry wants, its petty humiliations-then will be
the real trial."
"But," said I, "now that you have got over the
:everest task, that of breaking it to her, the sooner
you let the world into the secret the better. The
disclosure may be mortifying; but then it is a single
misery, and soon over; whereas you otherwise suf-
fer it, in anticipation, every hour in the day. It is
not poverty, so much as pretense, that harasses a


ruined man-the struggle between a proud mind
and an empty purse-the keeping up a hollow show
that must soon come to an end. Have the courage
to appear poor, and you disarm poverty of its sharp-
est sting." On this point I found Leslie perfectly
prepared. He had no false pride himself, and as to
his wife, she was only anxious to conform to their
altered fortunes.
Some days afterwards, he called upon me in the
evening. He had disposed of his dwelling-house,
and taken a small cottage in the country, a few miles
from town. HIe had been busied all day in sending
out furniture. The new establishment required few
articles, and those of the simplest kind. All the
splendid furniture of his late residence had been
sold, excepting his wife's harp. That, he said was
too closely associated with the idea of herself; it
belonged to the little story of their loves; for some
of the sweetest moments of their courtship were
those when he had leaned over that instrument, and
listened to the melting tones of her voice. I could
not but smile at this instance of romantic gallantry
in a doting husband.
He was now going out to the cottage. where his
wife had been all day, superintending its arrange-
ment. My feelings had become strongly interested
in the progress of this family story, and as it was a
fine evening, I offered to accompany him.
He was wearied with the fatigues of the day, and
as we walked out, fell into a fit of gloomy musing.
"Poor Mary!" at length broke, with a heavy sigh,
from his lips,


"And what of her," asked I, "has anything hap-
pened to her?"
"What," said he, darting an impatient glance,
"is it nothing to be reduced to this paltry situation
-to be caged in a miserable cottage-to be obliged
to toil almost in the menial concerns of her wretched
habitation ?"
"Has she then repined at the change?"
"Repined! she has been nothing but sweetness
and good humor. Indeed, she seems in better spir-
its than I have ever known her; she has been to me
all love and tenderness and comfort!"
"Admirable girl!" exclaimed I. "You call your-
self poor, my friend; you never were so rich-you
never knew the boundless treasures of excellence
you possessed in that woman."
"Oh! but, my friend, if this first meeting at the
cottage were over, I think I could then be comfort-
able. But this is her first day of real experience
she has been introduced into an humble dwelling-
she has been employed all day in arranging its mis
erable equipments-she has for the first time knowE
the fatigues of domestic employment-she has for
the first time looked around her on a home destitute
of everything elegant-almost of everything conve-
nient; and may now be sitting down, exhausted and
spiritless, brooding over a prospect of future pov-
There was a degree of probability in this picture
that I could not gainsay, so we walked on in silence.
After turning from the main road, up a narrow
lane, so thickly shaded by forest trees as to give it


a complete air of seclusion, we came in sight of the
cottage It was humble enough in its appearance
for the most pastoral poet; and yet it had a pleasing
rural took. A wild vine had overrun one end with a
profusion of foliage; a few trees threw their branch-
es gracefully over it; and I observed several pots of
flowers tastefully disposed about the door, and on
the grass-plot in front. A small wicket-gate opened
upon a footpath that wound through some shub-
bery to the door. Just as we approached we heard
the sound of music-Leslie grasped my arm; we
paused and listened. It was Mary's voice singing,
in a style of the most touching simplicity, a little air
of which her husband was peculiarly fond.
I felt Lesl!e's hand tremble on my arm. He step-
ped forward to hear more distinctly. His step
made a noise on the gravel walk. A bright beauti-
ful face glanced out at the window and vanished-a
light footstep was heard-and Mary came tripping
forth to meet us. She was in a pretty rural dress of
white; a few wiid flowers were twisted in her fine
hair; a fresh bloom was on her cheek; her whole
countenance beamed with smiles-I had never seen
her look so lovely.
"My dear George," cried she, "I am so glad you
are come; I have been watching and watching for
you; and running down the lane and looking out
for you. I've set out a table under a beautiful tree
behind the cottage; and I've been gathering some of
the most delicious strawberries, for I know you are
fond of them-and we have such excellent cream-
and everything is so sweet and still here.-Oh !"


said she, putting her arm within his, and looking up
brightly in his face, oh, we shall be so happy!"
Poor Leslie was overcome. He caught her to his
bosom--he folded his arms round her-he kissed her
again and again-he could not speak, but the tears
gushed into his eyes; and he has often assured me
that though the world has since gone prosperously
with him, and his life has indeed been a happy one,
yet never has he experienced a moment of more ex-
quisite felicity.



I never heard
Of any true affection, but 'twas nipped
With care, that, like the caterpillar, eats
The leaves of the spring's sweetest book, the rose.

IT is a common practice with those who have out-
lived the susceptibility of early feeling, or have been
brought up in the gay heartlessness of dissipated life,
to laugh at all love stories, and to treat the tales of
romantic passion as mere fictions of novelists and
poets. My observations on human nature have in-
duced me to think otherwise. Theyhave convinced
me that, however the surface of the character maybe
chilled and frozen by the cares of the world, or cul-
tivated into mere smiles by the arts of society, still
there are dormant fires lurking in the depths of the
coldest bosom, which, when once enkindled, become
impetuous, and are sometimes desolating in their ef-
fects. Indeed, I am a true believer in the blind
deity, and go to the full extent of his doctrines.
Shall I confess it?-I believe in broken hearts, and
the possibility of dying of disappointed love! I do
not, however, consider it a malady often fatal to my
own sex; but I firmly believe that it withers down
many a lovely woman into an early grave.
Man is the creature of interest and ambition. His
nature leads him forth into the struggle and bustle
of the world. Love is but the embellishment of his



early life, or a song piped in the intervals of the acts.
He seeks for fame, for fortune, for space in the
world's thought, and dominion over his fellow-men.
But a woman's whole life is a history of the affec-
tions. The heart is her world; it is there her ambi-
tion strives for empire-it is there her avarice seeks
for hidden treasures. She sends forth her sympa-
thies on adventure; she embarks her whole soul in
the traffic of affection; and if shipwrecked, her case
is hopeless-for it is a bankruptcy of the heart.
To a man the disappointment of love may occasion
some bitter pangs; it wounds some feelings of tender-
ness-it blasts some prospects of felicity; but he is
an active being; he may dissipate his thoughts in the
whirl of varied occupation, or may plunge into the
tide of pleasure; or, if the scene of disappointment
be too full of painful associations, he can shift his
abode at will, and taking, as it were, the wings of
the morning, can "fly to the uttermost parts of the
earth, and be at rest."
But woman's is comparatively a fixed, a secluded,
and a meditative life. She is more the companion
of her own thoughts and feelings; and if they are
turned to ministers of sorrow, where shall she look
for consolation? Her lot is to be wooed and won;
and if unhappy in her love, her heart is like some
fortress that has been captured, and sacked, and
abandoned, and left desolate.
How many bright eyes grow dim-how many soft
cheeks grow pale-how many lovely forms fade
away into the tomb, and none can tell the cause that
blighted their loveliness! As the dove will clasp its


wings to its side, and cover and conceal the arrow
that is preying on its vitals-so it is the nature of
woman to hide from the world the pangs of wounded
affection. The love of a delicate female is always
shy and silent. Even when fortunate, she scarcely
breathes it to herself; but when otherwise, she buries
it in the recesses of her bosom, and there lets it
cower and brood among the ruins of her peace.
With her, the desire of her heart has failed-the
great charm of existence is at an end, She neglects
all the cheerful exercises which gladden the spirits,
quicken the pulses, and send the tide of life in
healthful currents through the veins. Her rest is
broken-the sweet refreshment of sleep is poisoned
by melancholy dreams-"dry sorrow drinks her
blood," until her enfeebled frame sinks under the
slightest external injury. Look for her, after a little
while, and you find friendship weeping over her un-
timely grave, and wondering that one, who but lately
glowed with all the radiance of health and beauty,
should so speedily be brought down to darkness
and the worm." You will be told of some wintry
chill, some casual indisposition, that laid her low-
but no one knows the mental malady that previously
sapped her strength, and made her so easy a prey to
the spoiler.
She is like some tender tree, the pride and beauty
of the grove: graceful in its form, bright in its foli-
age, but with the worm preying at its heart. We
find it suddenly withering, when it should be most
fresh and luxuriant. We see it drooping its branches
to the earth, and shedding leaf by leaf; until, wasted



and perished away, it falls even in the stillness of
the forest; and as we muse over the beautiful ruin,
we strive in vain to recollect the blast or thunderbolt
that could have smitten it with decay.
I have seen many instances of women running to
waste and self-neglect, and disappearing gradually
from the earth, almost as if they had been exhaled
to heaven; and have repeatedly fancied that I could
trace their deaths through the various declensions of
consumption, cold, debility, languor, melancholy,
until I reached the first symptom of disappointed
love. But an instance of the kind was lately told
to me; the circumstances are well known in the
S country where they happened, and I shall but give
them in the manner in which they were related.
Every one must recollect the tragical story of
young E- the Irish patriot: it was too touching
to be soon forgotten. During the troubles in Ire-
land he was tried, condemned, and executed on a
charge of treason. His fate made a deep impression
on public sympathy. He was so young-so intelli-
gent-so generous-so brave-so everything that we
are apt to like in a young man. His conduct under
trial, too, was so lofty and intrepid. The noble in-
dignation with which he repelled the charge of trea-
son against his country-the eloquent vindication of
his name-and his pathetic appeal to posterity, in
the hopeless hour of condemnation-all these entered
deeply into every generous bosom, and even his ene-
mies lamented the stern policy that dictated his exe-
But there was one heart, whose anguish it would


be impossible to describe. In happier days and
fairer fortunes, he had won the affections of a beau-
tiful and interesting girl, the daughter of a late cele-
brated Irish barrister. She loved him with the dis-
interested fervor of a woman's first and early love.
When every worldly maxim arrayed itself against
him; when blasted in fortune, and disgrace and dan-
ger darkened around his name, she loved him the
more ardently for his very sufferings. If, then, his
fate could awaken the sympathy even of his foes,
what must have been the agony of her, whose whole
soul was occupied by his image? Let those tell who
have had the portals of the tomb suddenly closed be-
tween them and the being they most loved on earth
-who have sat at its threshold, as one shut out in a
cold and lonely world, from whence all that was
most lovely and loving had departed.
But then the horrors of such a grave!-so fright-
ful, so dishonored! There was nothing for memory
to dwell on that could soothe the pang of separation
-none of those tender though melancholy circum-
stances that endear the parting scene-nothing to
melt sorrow into those blessed tears, sent like the
dews of heaven, to revive the heart in the parting
hour of anguish.
To render her widowed situation more desolate,
she had incurred her father's displeasure by her un-
fortunate attachment, and was an exile from the
paternal roof. But could the sympathy and kind
otfices of friends have reached a spirit so shocked
and driven in by horror, she would have experienced
no want of consolation, for the Irish are a people of


quick and generous sensibilities. The most delicate
and cherishing attentions were paid her by families
of wealth and distinction. She was led into society,
and they tried by all kinds of occupation and amuse-
ment to dissipate her grief and wean her from the
tragical story of her loves. But it was all in vain.
There are some strokes of calamity that scathe and
scorch the soul-that penetrate to the vital seat of
happiness-and blast it, never again to put forth bud
or blossom. She never objected to frequent the
haunts of pleasure, but she was as much alone there
as in the depths of solitude. She walked about in a
sad reverie, apparently unconscious of the world
around her. She carried with her an inward woe
that mocked at all the blandishments of friendship,
and "heeded not the song of the charmer, charm he
never so wisely."
The person who told me her story had seen her
at a masquerade. There can be no exhibition of
fargone wretchedness more striking and painful
than to meet it in such a scene. To find it wander-
ing like a spectre, lonely and joyless, where all
around is gay-to see it dressed out in the trappings
of mirth, and looking so wan and woebegone, as if
it had tried in vain to cheat the poor heart into a
momentary forgetfulness of sorrow. After strolling
through the splendid rooms and giddy crowd with
an air of utter abstraction, she sat herself down on
the steps of an orchestra, and looking about for some
time with a vacant air, that showed her insensibility
to the garish scene, she began with the capricious-
ness of a sickly heart to warble a little plaintive air.


She had an exquisite voice; but on this occasion it
was so simple, so touching-it breathed forth such a
soul of wretchedness-that she drew a crowd, mute
and silent, around her, and melted every one into
The story of one so true and tender could not but
excite great interest in a country remarkable for en-
thusiasm. It completely won the heart of a brave
officer, who paid his addresses to her, and thought
that one so true to the dead could not but prove af-
fectionate to the living. She declined his attentions,
for her thoughts were irrecoverably engrossed by the
memory of her former lover. He, however, per-
sisted in his suit. He solicited not her tenderness,
but her esteem. He was assisted by her conviction
of his worth, and her sense of her own destitute and
dependent situation, for she was existing on the
kindness of friends. In a word, he at length suc-
ceeded in gaining her hand, though with the sol-
emn assurance that her heart was unalterably an-
He took her with him to Sicily, hoping that a
change of scene might wear out the remembrance of
early woes. She was an amiable and exemplary
wife, and made an effort to be a happy one; but
nothing could cure the silent and devouring melan-
choly that had entered into her very soul. She
wasted away, in a slow but hopeless decline, and at
length sunk into the grave, the victim of a broken
It was on her that Moore, the distinguished Irish
poet, composed the following lines:

I *


She is far from the land where her young hero sleeps,
And lovers around her are sighing;
But coldly she turns from their gaze, and weeps,
For her heart in his grave is lying.

She sings the wild song of her dear native plains,
Every note which he loved awaking--
Ah! little they think who delight in her strains,
How the heart of the minstrel is breaking!

He had lived for his love-for his country he died,
They were all that to life had entwined him-
Nor soon shall the tears of his country be dried,
Nor long will his love stay behind him I

Oh! make her a grave where the sunbeams rest,
When they promise a glorious morrow:
They'll shine o'er her sleep, like a smile from the west
From her own loved island of sorrow



"*If that severe doom of Synesius be true-' it is a greater
offense to steal dead men's labors than their clothes '--what
shall become of most writers?"
BURTON'S Anatomy of Melancholy.
I HAVE often wondered at the extreme fecundity of
the press, and how it comes to pass that so many heads
on which Nature seems to have inflicted the curse of
barrenness, yet teem with voluminous productions.
As a man travels on, however, in the journey cf life,
his objects of wonder daily diminish, and he is con-
tinually finding out some very simple cause for some
great matter of marvel. Thus have I chanced, in
my peregrinations about this great metropolis, to
blunder upon a scene which unfolded to me some of
the mysteries of the book-making craft and at once
put an end to my astonishment.
I was one summer's day loitering through the
great saloons of the British Museum, with that list-
lessness with which one is apt to saunter about a
room in warm weather; sometimes lolling over the
glass cases of minerals, sometimes studying the
hieroglyphics on an Egyptian mummy, and some-
times trying, with nearly equal success, to compre-
hend the allegorical paintings on the lofty ceilings.
While I was gazing aboat in this idle way, my atten-
tion was attracted to a distant door, at the end of a
suite of apartments. It was closed, but every now
and then it would open, and some strange-favored


being, generally clothed in black, would steal forth
and glide through the rooms, without noticing any
of the surrounding objects. There was an air of
mystery about this that piqued my languid curiosity,
and I determined to attempt the passage of that
strait, and to explore the unknown regions that lay
beyond. The door yielded to my hand, with all that
facility with which the portals of enchanted castles
yield to the adventurous knight-errant. I found
myself in a spacious chamber, surrounded with
great cases of venerable books. Above the cases
and just under the cornice were arranged a great
number of quaint black-looking portraits of ancient
authors. About the room were placed long tables,
with stands for reading and writing, at which sat
many pale, cadaverous personages, poring intently
over dusty volumes, rummaging among moldy man-
uscripts, and taking copious notes of their contents.
The most hushed stillness reigned through this mys-
terious apartment, excepting that you might hear
the racing of pens over sheets of paper, or, occa-
sionally, the deep sigh of one of these sages, as he
shifted his position to turn over the pages of an old
folio; doubtless arising from that hollowness and
flatulency incident to learned research.
Now and then one of those personages would write
something on a small slip of paper, and ring a bell,
whereupon a familiar would appear, take the paper
in profound silence, glide out of the room, and return
shortly loaded with ponderous tomes, upon which
the other would fall, tooth and nail, with famished
voracity. I had no longer a doubt that I had hap,


opened upon a body of magi, deeply engaged in the
study of occult sciences. The scene reminded me
of an old Arabian tale, of a philosopher who was
shut up in an enchanted library, in the bosom of a
mountain, that opened only once a year; where lie
made the spirits of the place obey his commands,
and bring him books of all kinds of dark knowledge,
so that at the end of the year, when the magic portal
once more swung open on its hinges, he issued forth
so versed in forbidden lore as to be able to soar above
the heads of the multitude, and to control the powers
of Nature.
My curiosity being now ful'y aroused, I whispered
to one of the familiars, as he was about to leave the
room, and begged an interpretation of the strange
scene before me. A few words were sufficient for
the purpose:-I found that these mysterious person-
ages whom I had mistaken for magi, were principally
authors, and were in the very act of manufacturing
books. I was, in fact, in the reading-room of the
great British Library, an immense collection of vol-
umes of all ages and languages, many of which are
now forgotten, and most of which are seldom read.
To these sequestered pools of obsolete literature,
therefore, do many modern authors repair, and draw
buckets full of classic lore, or "pure English,
undefiled," wherewith to swell their own scanty rills
of thought.
Being now in possession of the secret, I sat down
in a corner and watched the process of this book
manufactory. I noticed one lean, bilious-looking
wight, who sought none but the most worm-eaten


volumes, printed in black-letter. He was evidently
constructing some work of profound erudition, that
would be purchased by every man who wished to be
thought learned, placed upon a conspicuous shelf of
his library, or laid open upon his table-but never
read. I observed him, now and then, draw a large
fragment of biscuit out of his pocket, and gnaw;
whether it was his dinner or whether he was
endeavoring to keep off that exhaustion of the
stomach, produced by much pondering over dry
works, I leave to harder students than myself to
There was one dapper little gentleman in bright
colored clothes, with a chirping gossiping expression
of countenance, who had all the appearance of an
author on good terms with his bookseller. After
considering him attentively, I recognized in him a
diligent getter-up of miscellaneous works, which
bustled off well with the trade. I was curious to see
how he manufactured his wares. He made more
stir and show of business than any of the others:
dipping into various books, fluttering over the leaves
of manuscripts, taking a morsel out of one, a morsel
out of another, "line upon line, precept upon pre-
cept, here a little and there a little." The contents
of his book seemed to be as heterogeneous as those
of the witches' caldron in Macbeth. It was here a
finger and there a thumb, toe of frog and blind
worm's sting, with his own gossip poured in like
"baboon's blood," to make the medley "slab and
After all, thought I, may not this pilfering dispo-


sition be implanted in authors for wise purposes?
May it not be the way in which Providence has
taken care that the seeds of knowledge and wisdom
shall be preserved from age to age, in spite of the
inevitable decay of the works in which they were
first produced? We see that Nature has wisely
though whimsically provided for the conveyance of
seeds from clime to clime, in the maws of certain
birds; so that animals, which, in themselves, are
little better than carrion, and apparently the lawless
plunderers of the orchard and the cornfield, are, in
fact, Nature's carriers to disperse and perpetuate her
blessings. In like manner, the beauties and fine
thoughts of ancient and obsolete writers are caught
up by these flights of predatory authors, and cast
forth, again to flourish and bear fruit in a remote
and distant tract of time. Many of their works,
also, undergo a kind of metempsychosis, and spring
up under new forms. What was formerly a ponder-
ous history revives in the shape of a romance-an
old legend changes into a modern play--and a sober
philosophical treatise furnishes the body for a whole
series of bouncing and sparkling essays. Thus it is
in the clearing of our American woodlands; where
we burn down a forest of stately pines, a progeny of
dwarf oaks start up in their place; and we never see
the prostrate trunk of a tree, moldering into soil, but
it gives birth to a whole tribe of fungi.
Let us not, then, lament over the decay and ob-
livion into which ancient writers descend; they do
but submit to the great law of Nature, which declares
that all sublunary shapes of matter shall be limited


in their duration, but which decrees, also, that their
elements shall never perish. Generation after gen-
eration, both in animal and vegetable life, passes
away, but the vital principle is transmitted to pos-
terity, and the species continue to flourish. Thus,
also, do authors beget authors, and having produced
a numerous progeny, in a good old age they sleep
with their fathers; that is to say, with the authors
who preceded them-and from whom they had
While I was indulging in these rambling fancies
I had leaned my head against a pile of reverend
folios. Whether it was owing to the soporific ema-
nations from these works; or to the profound quiet of
the room; or to the lassitude arising from much
wandering; or to an unlucky habit of napping at
improper times and places, with which I am .griev-
ously afflicted, so it was, that I fell into a doze.
Still, however, my imagination continued busy, and
indeed the same scene remained before my mind's
eye, only a little changed in some of the details. I
dreamed that the chamber was still decorated with
the portraits of ancient authors, but the number was
increased. The long tables had disappeared, and in
place of the sage magi, I beheld a ragged, threadbare
throng, such as may be seen plying about the great
repository of cast-off clothes, Monmouth street.
Whenever they seized upon a book, by one of those
incongruities common to dreams, methought it turned
into a garment of foreign or antique fashion, with
which they proceeded to equip themselves. I no-
ticed, however, that no one pretended to clothe him-


self from any particular suit, but took a sleeve from
one, a cape from another, a skirt from a third, thus
decking himself out piecemeal, while some of his
original rags would peep out from among his bor-
rowed finery.
There was a portly, rosy, well-fed parson, whom
I observed ogling several moldy polemical writers
through an eye-glass. He soon contrived to slip on
the voluminous mantle of one of the old fathers, and
having purloined the gray beard of another, endeav-
ored to look exceedingly wise; but the smirking com-
monplace of his countenance set at nought all the
trappings of wisdom. One sickly-looking gentleman
was busied embroidering a very flimsy garment with
gold thread drawn out of several old court-dresses of
the reign of Queen Elizabeth. Another had trimmed
himself magnificently from an illuminated manu-
script, had stuck a nosegay in his bosom, culled from
"The Paradise of Dainty Devices," and having put
Sir Philip Sidney's hat on one side of his head,
strutted off with an exquisite air of vulgar elegance.
A third, who was but of puny dimensions, had bol-
stered himself out bravely with the spoils from sev-
eral obscure tracts of philosophy, so that he had a
very imposing front, but he was lamentably tattered
in rear, and I perceived that he had patched his
small-clothes with scraps of parchment from a Latin
There were some well-dressed gentlemen, it is
true, who only helped themselves to a gem or so,
which sparkled among their own ornaments without
eclipsing them. Some, too, seemed to contemplate


the costumes of the old writers, merely to imbibe
their principles of taste, and to catch their air and
spirit; but I grieve to say that too many were apt to
array themselves, from top to toe, in the patch-work
manner I have mentioned. I should not omit to
speak of one genius, in drab breeches and gaiters,
and an Arcadian hat, who had a violent propensity
to the pastoral, but whose rural wanderings had
been confined to the classic haunts of Primrose Hill
and the solitudes of the Regent's Park. He had
decked himself in wreaths and ribbons from all the
old pastoral poets, and hanging his head bn one side,
went about with a fantastical, lack-a-daisical air,
"babbling about green fields." But the' personage
that most struck my attention was a pragmatical old
gentleman, in clerical robes,with a remarkably large
and square but bald head. He entered the room
wheezing and puffing, elbowed his way through the
throng, with a look of sturdy self-confidence, and
having laid hands upon a thick Greek quarto, clap-
ped it upon his head, and swept majestically away
in a formidable frizzled wig.
In the height of this literary masquerade, a cry
suddenly resounded from every side, of "thieves!
thieves I" I looked, and lo! the portraits about the
wall became animated! The old authors thrust out
first a head, then a shoulder, from the canvas, looked
down curiously, for an instant, upon the motley
throng, and then descended, with fury in their eyes,
to claim their rifled property. The scene of scam-
pering and hubbub that ensued baffles all descrip-
tion. The unhappy culprits endeavored in vain to


escape with their plunder. On one side might be
seen half a dozen old monks, stripping a modern
professor; on another, there was sad devastation
carried into the ranks of modern dramatic writers.
Beaumont and Fletcher, side by side, raged round
the field like Castor and Pollux, and sturdy Ben Jon-
son enacted more wonders than when a volunteer
with the army in Flanders. As to the dapper little
compiler of farragos, mentioned some time since, he
had arrayed himself in as many patches and colors
as iHarlequin, and there was as fierce a contention
of claimants about him as about the dead body of
Patroclus. I was grieved to see many men, whom I
had been accustomed to look upon with awe and
reverence, fain to steal off with scarce a rag to cover
their nakedness. Just then my eye was caught by
the pragmatical old gentleman in the Greek grizzled
wig, who was scrambling away in sore affright with
half a score of authors in full cry after him. They
were close upon his haunches; in a twinkling off
went his wig; at every turn some strip of raiment
was peeled away; until in a few moments, from his
domineering pomp, he shrunk into a little pursy,
"chopp'd bald shot," and made his exit with only a
few tags and rags fluttering at his back.
There was something so ludicrous in the catastro-
phe of this learned Theban that I burst into an im-
moderate fit of laughter, which broke the whole
illusion. The tumult and the scuffle were at an end.
The chamber resumed its usual appearance. The
old authors shrunk back into their picture-frames,
and hung in shadowy solemnity along the walls. In


short, I found myself wide awake in my corner,with
the whole assemblage of bookworms gazing at me
with astonishment. Nothing of the dream had been
real but my burst of laughter, a sound never before
heard in that grave sanctuary, and so abhorrent to
the ears of wisdom as to electrify the fraternity.
The librarian now stepped up to me, and de-
manded whether I had a card of admission. At
first I did not comprehend him, but I soon found
that the library was a kind of literary "preserve,"
subject to game laws, and that no one must presume
to hunt there without special license and permission.
In a word, I stood convicted of being an arrant
poacher, and was glad to make a precipitate retreat,
lest I should have a whole pack of authors let loose
upon me.



Pittie olde age, within whose silver haires
Honor and reverence evermore have raign'd.
MARLOWE'S Tamburlaine.
DURING my residence in the country I used fre
quently to attend at the old village church. Its
shadowy aisles, its moldering monuments, its dark
oaken paneling, all reverend with the gloom of de-
parted years, seemed to fit it for the haunt of solemn
meditation. A Sunday, too, in the country is so
holy in its repose -such a pensive quiet reigns over
the face of Nature that every restless passion is
charmed down, and we feel all the natural religion
of the soul gently springing up within us.
Sweet day, so pure, so calm, so bright,
The bridal of the earth and sky I
I cannot lay claim to the merit of being a devout
man; but there are feelings that visit me in a country
church, amid the beautiful serenity of Nature,which
I experience nowhere else; and if not a more relig-
ious, I think I am a better man on Sunday than on
any other day of the seven.
But in this church I felt myself continually
thrown back upon the world by the frigidity and
pomp of the poor worms around me. The only be-
ing that seemed thoroughly to feel the humble and
prostrate piety of a true Christian was a poor de


crepit old woman, bending under the weight of years
and infirmities. She bore the traces of something
better than abject poverty. The lingeringsof decent
pride were visible in her appearance. Her dress,
though humble in the extreme, was scrupulously
clean. Some trivial respect, too, had been awarded
her, for she did not take her seat among the village
poor, but sat alone on the steps of the altar. She
seemed to have survived all love, all friendship, all
society; and to have nothing left her but the hopes
of heaven. When I saw her feebly rising and bend-
ing her aged form in prayer; habitually conning her
prayer-book,which her palsied hand and failing eyes
could not permit her to read, but which she evi-
dently knew by heart; I felt persuaded that the fal-
tering voice of that poor woman rose to heaven far
before the responses of the clerk, the swell of the
organ, or the chanting of the choir.
I am fond of loitering about country churches;
and this was so delightfully situated that it frequent-
ly attracted me. It stood on a knoll, round which a
small stream made a beautiful bend, and then wound
its way through a long reach of soft meadow scenery.
The church was surrounded by yew trees, which
seemed almost coeval with itself. Its tall Gothic
spire shot up lightly from among them, with rooks
and crows generally wheeling about it. I was seated
there one still sunny morning, watching two labor-
ers who were digging a grave. They had chosen
one or the most remote and neglected corners of the
churchyard, where, by tha number of nameless
graves around, it would appear that the indigent and



friendless-were huddled into the earth. I was told
that the new-made grave was for the only son of a
poor widow. While I was meditating upon the dis-
tinctions of worldly rank, which extend thus down
into the very dust, the toll of the bell announced
the approach of the funeral. They were the obse-
quies of poverty, with which pride had nothing to
do. A coffin of the plainest materials, without pall
or other covering, was borne by some of the vil-
lagers. The sexton walked before with an air of
cold indifference. There were no mock mourners in
the trappings of affected woe, but there was one real
mourner who feebly tottered after the corpse. It
was the aged mother of the deceased-the poor old
woman whom I had seen seated on the steps of the
altar. She was supported by an humble friend, who
was endeavoring to comfort her. A few of the
neighboring poor had joined the train, and some
children of the village were running hand in hand,
now shouting with unthinking mirth, and now paus-
ing to gaze with childish curiosity on the grief of the
As the funeral train approached the grave, the
parson issued from the church-porch, arrayed in the
surplice, with prayer-book in hand, and attended by
the clerk. The service, however, was a mere act of
charity. The deceased had been destitute, and the
survivor was penniless. It was shuffled through,
therefore, in form, but coldly and unfeelingly. The
well-fed priest moved but a few steps from the
church door; his voice could scarcely be heard at
the grave; and never did I hear the funeral service,


that sublime and touching ceremony, turned into
such a frigid mummery of words.
I approached the grave. The coffin was placed on
the ground. On it were inscribed the name and age
of the deceased-" George Somers, aged 26 years."
The poor mother had been assisted to kneel down at
the head of it. Her withered hands were clasped as
if in prayer; but I could perceive, by a feeble rock-
ing of the body and a convulsive motion of the lips,
that she was gazing on the last relics of her son with
the yearnings of a mother's heart.
Preparations were made to deposit the coffin in
the earth. There was that bustling stir which breaks
so harshly on the feelings of grief and affection;
directions given in the cold tones of business; the
striking of spades into sand and gravel: which, at
the grave of those we love, is of all sounds the most
withering. The bustle around seemed to waken the
mother from a wretched reverie. She raised her
glazed eyes, and looked about with a faint wildness.
As the men approached with cords to lower the cof-
fin into the grave, she wrung her hands and broke
into an agony of grief. The poor woman who at-
tended her took her by the arm and endeavored to
raise her from the earth, and to whisper something
like consolation-" Nay, nay-nay, now-don't take
it so sorely to heart." She could only shake her head
and wring her hands as one not to be comforted.
As they lowered the body into the earth, the creak-
ing of the cords seemed to agonize her; but when,
on some accidental obstruction, there was a jostling
of the coffin, all the tenderness of the mother burst


forth; as if any harm could come .to him who was
far beyond the reach of worldly suffering.
I could see no more-my heart swelled into my
throat-my eyes filled with tears-I felt as if I were
acting a barbarous part in standing by and gazing
idly on this scene of maternal anguish. I wandered
to another part of the churchyard, where I remained
until the funeral train had dispersed.
When I saw the mother slowly and painfully quit-
ting the grave, leaving behind her the remains of all
that was dear to her on earth, and returning to si-
lence and destitution, my heart ached for her. What,
thought I, are the distresses of the rich? They have
friends to soothe-pleasures to beguile-a world to
divert and dissipate their griefs. What are the sor-
rows of the young? Their growing minds soon
close above the wound-their elastic spirits soon rise
beneath the pressure-their grsen and ductile affec-
tions soon twine around new objects. But the sor-
rows of the poor, who have no outward appliances
to soothe-the sorrows of the aged, with whom life
at best is but a wintry day, and who can look for no
after-growth of joy-the sorrows of a widow, aged,
solitary, destitute, mourning over an only son, the
last solace of her years;-these are indeed sorrows
which make us feel the impotency of consolation.
It was some time before I left the churchyard.
On my way homeward, I met with the woman who
had acted as comforter; she was just returning from
accompanying the mother to her lonely habitation,
and I drew from her some particulars connected
with the affecting scene I had witnessed.


The parents of the deceased had resided in the
village from childhood. They had inhabited one of
the neatest cottages, and by various rural occupa-
tions, and the assistance of a small garden, had sup-
ported themselves creditably and comfortably, and
led a happy and blameless life, They had one son
who had grown up to be the staff and pride of their
age.-" Oh, sir!" said the good woman, "he was
such a comely lad, so sweet-tempered, so kind to
every one around him, so dutiful to his parents! It
did one's heart good to see him of a Sunday, dressed
out in his best so tall, so straight, so cheery, sup-
porting his old mother to church-for she was al-
ways fonder of leaning on George's arm than on her
good man's; and, poor soul, she might well be proud
of him, for a finer lad there was not in the country
Unfortunately the son was tempted, during a year
of scarcity and agricultural hardship, to enter into
the service of one of the small craft that plied on a
neighboring river. He had not been long in this
employ when he was entrapped by a press-gang, and
carried off to sea. His parents received tidings of
his seizure, but beyond that they could learn noth-
ing. It was the loss of their main prop. The father,
who was already infirm, grew heartless and melan-
choly, and sunk into his grave. The widow, left
lonely in her age and feebleness, could no longer
support herself, and came upon the parish. Still
there was a kind of feeling toward her throughout
the village, and a certain respect as being one of the
oldest inhabitants. As no one applied for the cottage


in which she had passed so many happy days, she
was permitted to remain in it, where she lived soli-
tary and almost helpless. The few wants of nature
were chiefly supplied from the scanty productions
of her little garden, which the neighbors would now
and then cultivate for her. It was but a few days
before the time at which these circumstances were
told me, that she was gathering some vegetables for
her repast, when she heard the cottage-door which
faced the garden suddenly opened. A stranger
came out, and seemed to be looking eagerly and
wildly around. He was dressed in seamen's clothes,
was emaciated and ghastly pale, and bore the air of
one broken by sickness and hardships. He saw her,
and hastened toward her, but his steps were faint
and faltering; he sank on his knees before her, and
sobbed like a child. The poor woman gazed upon
him with a vacant and wandering eye-" Oh my
dear, dear mother! don't you know your son! your
poor boy George?" It was, indeed, the wreck of
her once noble lad; who, shattered by wounds, by
sickness, and foreign imprisonment, had at length
dragged his wasted limbs homeward, to repose
among the scenes of his childhood.
I will not attempt to detail the particulars of such
a meeting, where sorrow and joy were so completely
blended: still he was alive!-he was come home!-
he might yet live to comfort and cherish her old age!
Nature, however, was exhausted in him; and if any-
thing had been wanting to finish the work of fate,
the desolation of his native cottage would have been
sufficient. He stretched himself on the pallet on


which his widowed mother had passed many a sleep-
less night, and he never rose from it again.
The villagers, when they heard that George Som-
ers had returned, crowded to see him, offering every
comfort and assistance that their humble means
afforded. He was too weak, however, to talk-lhe
could only look his thanks. His mother was his
constant attendant; and he seemed unwilling to be
helped by any other hand.
There is something in sickness that breaks down
the pride in manhood; that softens the heart and
brings it back to the feelings of infancy. Who that
has languished, even in advanced life, in sickness
and despondency; who that has pined on a weary
bed in the neglect and loneliness of a foreign land;
but has thought on the mother "that looked on his
childhood," that smoothed his pillow, and adminis-
tered to his helplessness? Oh! there is an enduring
tenderness in the love of a mother to a son, that
transcends all other affections of the heart. It is
neither to be chilled by selfishness, nor daunted by
danger, nor weakened by worthlessness, nor stifled
by ingratitude. She will sacrifice every comfort to
his convenience; she will surrender every pleasure
to his enjoyment; she will glory in his fame and
exult in his prosperity;-and if misfortune overtake
him, he will be the dearer to her from misfortune;
and if disgrace settle upon his name, she will still
love and cherish him in spite of his disgrace; and if
all the world beside cast him off, she will be all the
world to him.
Poor George Somers had known what it was to be


in sickness, and none to soothe-lonely and in prison,
and none to visit him. He could not endure his
mother from his sight; if she moved away, his eye
would follow her. She would sit for hours by his
bed, watching him as he slept. Sometimes he would
start from a feverish dream, and looking anxiously
up until he saw her bending over him, when he
would take her hand, lay it on his bosom, and fall
asleep with the tranquillity of a child. In this way
he died,
My first impulse, on hearing this humble tale of
affliction, was to visit the cottage of the mourner,
and administer pecuniary assistance, and, if possible,
comfort. I found, however, on inquiry, that the
good feelings of the villagers had prompted them to
do everything that the case admitted; and as the
poor know best how to console each other's sorrows,
I did not venture to intrude.
The next Sunday I was at the village church;
when, to my surprise, I saw the poor old woman
tottering down the aisle to her accustomed seat on
the steps of the altar.
She had made an effort to put on something like
mourning for her son; and nothing could be more
touching than this struggle between pious affection
and utter poverty: a black ribbon or so-a faded
black handkerchief-and one or two more such hum-
ble attempts to express by outward signs that grief
which passes show.-When I looked round upon
the storied monuments, the stately hatchments, the
cold marble pomp, with which grandeur mourned
magnificently over departed pride, and turned to


this poor widow, bowed down by age and sorrow at
the altar of her God, and offering up the prayers
and praises of a pious, though a broken heart, I felt
that this living monument of real grief was worth
them all.
I related her story to some of the wealthy mem-
bers of the congregation, and they were moved by it.
They exerted themselves to render her situation
more comfortable, and to lighten her afflictions. It
was, however, but smoothing a few steps to the
grave. In the course of a Sunday or two after, she
was missed from her usual seat at church, and be-
fore I left the neighborhood I heard, with a feeling
of satisfaction, that she had quietly breathed her
last, and had gone to rejoin those she loved, in that
world where sorrow is never known, and friends are
never parted.




A tavern is the rendezvous, the exchange, the staple of
good fellows. I have heard my great-grandfather tell, how
his great-great-grandfather should say, that it was an old
proverb when his great-grandfather was a child, that it was
a good wind that blew a man to the wine."

IT is a pious custom in some Catholic countries to
honor the memory of saints by votive lights burned
before their pictures. The popularity of a saint,
therefore, may be known by the number of these
offerings. One, perhaps, is left to molder in the
darkness of his little chapel; another may have a
solitary lamp to throw its blinking rays athwart his
effigy; while the whole blaze of adoration is lavished
at the shrine of some beatified father of renown.
The wealthy devotee brings his huge luminary of
wax; the eager zealot, his seven-branched candle-
stick; and even the mendicant pilgrim is by no
means satisfied that sufficient light is thrown upon
the deceased, unless he hangs up his little lamp of
smoking oil. The consequence is, in the eagerness
to enlighten, they are often apt to obscure; and I
have occasionally seen an unlucky saint almost


smoked out of countenance by the officiousness of
his followers.
In like manner has it fared with the immortal
Shakespeare. Every writer considers it his bounden
duty to light up some portion of his character or
works, and to rescue some merit from oblivion.
The commentator, opulent in words, produces vast
tomes of dissertations; the common herd of editors
send up mists of obscurity from their notes at the
bottom of each page; and every casual scribbler
brings his farthing rush-light of eulogy or research,
to swell the cloud of incense and of smoke.
As I honor all established usages of my brethren
of the quill, I thought it but proper to contribute
my mite of homage to the memory of the illustrious
bard. I was for some time, however, sorely puzzled
in what way I should discharge this duty. I found
myself anticipated in every attempt at a new read-
ing; every doubtful line had been explained a dozen
different ways, and perplexed beyond the reach of
elucidation; and as to fine passages they had all been
amply praised by previous admirers: nay, so com-
pletely had the bard, of late, been overlarded with
panegyric by a great German critic, that it was
difficult now to find even a fault that had not been
argued into a beauty.
In this perplexity I was one morning turning over
his pages, when I casually opened upon the comic
scenes of Henry IV., and was in a moment com-
pletely lost in the madcap revelry of the Boar's Head
Tavern. So vividly and naturally are these scenes
of hunor depicted, and with such force and consist-


ency are the characters sustained, that they become
mingled up in the mind with the facts and person-
ages of real life. To few readers does it occur that
these are all ideal creations of a poet's brain, and
that, in sober truth, no such knot of merry roysters
ever enlivened the dull neighborhood of Eastcheap.
For my part I love to give myself up to the illu-
sions of poetry. A hero of fiction that never existed
is just as valuable to me as a hero of history that
existed a thousand years since: and if I may be ex-
cused such an insensibility to the common ties of
human nature, I would not give up fat Jack for half
the great men of ancient chronicle. What have the
heroes of yore done for me, or men like me? They
have conquered countries of which I do not enjoy an
acre; or they have gained laurels of which I do not
inherit a leaf; or they have furnished examples of
hair-brained prowess, which I have neither the op-
portunity nor the inclination to follow. But old
Jack Falstaff!-kind Jack Falstaff!--sweet Jack
Falstaff! has enlarged the boundaries of human en-
joyment: he has added vast regions of wit and good-
humor, in which the poorest man may revel; and
has bequeathed a never-failing inheritance of jolly
laughter, to make mankind merrier and better to the
latest posterity.
A thought suddenly struck me: "I will make a
pilgrimage to Eastcheap," said I, closing the book,
"and see if the old Boar's Head Tavern still exists.
Who knows but I may light upon some legendary
traces of Dame Quickly and her guests; at any rate,
there -ill be a kindred pleasure in treading the halls


once vocal with their mirth, to that the toper enjoys
in smelling of the empty cask, once filled with gen-
erous wine."
The resolution was no sooner formed than put in
execution. I forbear to treat of the various adven-
tures and wonders I encountered in my travels, of
the haunted regions of Cock lane; of the faded
glories of Little Britain and the parts adjacent; what
perils I ran in Catcaton street and Old Jewry; of
the renowned Guildhall and its two stunted giants,
the pride and wonder of the city and the terror of
all unlucky urchins; and how I visited London
Stone and struck my staff upon it, in imitation of
that arch-rebel, Jack Cade.
Let it suffice to say that I at length arrived in
merry Eastcheap, that ancient region of wit and was-
sail, where the very names of the streets relished of
good cheer, as Pudding lane bears testimony even at
the present day. For Eastcheap, says old Stow, "was
always famous for its convivial doings. The cookes
cried hot ribbes of beef roasted, pies well baked, and
other victuals; there was clattering of pewter pots,
harpe, pipe, and sawtrie." Alas! how sadly is the
scene changed since the roaring days of Falstaff and
old Stow! The madcap royster has given place to
the plodding tradesman; the clattering of pots and
the sound of "harpe and sawtrie," to the din of carts
and the accursed dinging of the dustman's bell; and
no song is heard, save haply the strain of some siren
from Billingsgate, chanting the eulogy of deceased
I sought in vain for the ancient abode of Dame



Quickly. The only relic of it is a boar's head,
carved in relief stone, which formerly served as a
sign, but at present is built into the parting line of
two houses which stand on the site of the renowned
old tavern.
For the history of this little empire of good fellow-
ship I was referred to a tallow-chandler's widow,
opposite, who had been born and brought up on the
spot, and was looked up to as the indisputable
chronicler of the neighborhood. I found her seated
in a little back parlor, the window of which looked
out upon a yard about eight feet square, laid out as
"a flower-garden; while a glass door opposite afforded
"a distant peep of the street, through a vista of soap
and tallow candles; the two views, which comprised
in all probability her prospects in life, and the little
world in which she had lived, and moved, and had
her being, for the better part of a century.
To be versed in the history of Eastcheap, great
and little, from London Stone even unto the Monu-
ment, was doubtless, in her opinion, to be acquainted
with the history of the universe. Yet, with all this,
she possessed the simplicity of true wisdom and that
liberal communicative disposition which I have gen-
erally remarked in intelligent old ladies, knowing in
the concerns of their neighborhood.
Her information, however, did not extend far back
into antiquity. She could throw no light upon the
history of the Boar's Head, from the time that Dame
Quickly espoused the valiant Pistol until the great
fire of London, when it was unfortunately burned
down. It was soon rebuilt, and continued to flourish


under the old name and sign, until a dying landlord,
struck with remorse for double scores, bad measures,
and other iniquities which are incident to the sinful
race of publicans, endeavored to make his peace
with Heaven by bequeathing the tavern to St.
Michael's church, Crooked lane, toward the sup-
porting of a chaplain. For some time the vestry
meetings were regularly held there; but it was ob-
served that the old Boar never held up his head
under church government. He gradually declined,
and finally gave his last gasp about thirty years
since. The tavern was then turned into shops; but
she informed me that a picture of it was still pre-
served in St. Michael's church, which stood just in
the rear. To get a sight of this picture was now my
determination; so, having informed myself of the
abode of the sexton, I took my leave of the vener-
able chronicler of Eastcheap, my visit having doubt-
less raised greatly her opinion of her legendary lore,
and furnished an important incident in the history
of her life.
It cost me some difficulty and much curious in-
quiry to ferret out the humble hanger-on to the
church. I had to explore Crooked lane, and divers
little alleys, and elbows, and dark passages, with
which this old city is perforated, like an ancient
cheese, or a worm-eaten chest of drawers. At length
I traced him to a corner of a small court, surrounded
by lofty houses, where the inhabitants enjoy about
as much of the face of heaven as a community of
frogs at the bottom of a well. The sexton was a
meek, acquiescing little man, of a bowing, lowly


habit; yet he had a pleasant twinkling in his eye,
and if encouraged, would now and then venture a
small pleasantry, such as a man of his low estate
might venture to make in the company of high
church wardens, and other mighty men of the earth.
I found him in company with the deputy organist,
seated apart, like Milton's angels; discoursing, no
doubt, on high doctrinal points, and settling the
affairs of the church over a friendly pot of ale; for
the lower classes of English seldom deliberate on
any weighty matter without the assistance of a cool
tankard to clear their understandings. I arrived at
the moment when they had finished their ale and
their argument, and were about to repair to the
church to put it in order; so, having made known
my wishes, I received their gracious permission to
accompany them.
The church of St. Michael's, Crooked lane, stand-
ing a short distance from Billingsgate, is enriched
with the tombs of many fishmongers of renown;
and as every profession has its galaxy of glory, and
its constellation of great men, I presume the monu-
ment of a mighty fishmonger of the olden time is
regarded with as much reverence by succeeding
generations of the craft, as poets feel on contemplat-
ing the tomb of Virgil, or soldiers the monument of
a Marlborough or Turenne.
I cannot but turn aside while thus speaking of il-
lustrious men, to observe that St. Michael's, Crooked
lane, contains also the ashes of that doughty cham-
pion, William Walworth, knight, who so manfully
clove down the sturdy wight, Wat Tyler, in Smith.


field; a hero worthy of honorable blazon, as almost
the only Lord Mayor on record famous for deeds of
arms; the sovereigns of Cockney being generally
renowned as the most pacific of all potentates.*
Adjoining the church, in a small cemetery, imme-
diately under the back windows of what was once
the Boar's Head, stands the tombstone of Robert
Preston, whilome drawer at the tavern. It is now
nearly a century since this trusty drawer of good
liquor closed his bustling career, and was thus
quietly deposited within call of his customers. As

The following was the ancient inscription on the monu-
ment of this worthy, which, unhappily, was destroyed in the
great conflagration.
Hereunder lyth a man of fame,
William Walworth called by name;
Fishmonger he was in lyfftime here,
And twise Lord Maior, as in books appeared;
Who, with courage stout and manly myght,
Slew Jack Straw in Kyng Richard's sight,
For which act done, and trew entent,
The Kyng made him knyght incontinent;
And gave him armes, as here you see,
To declare his fact and chivaldrie:
He left this lyff the year of our God
Thirteen hondred fourscore and three odd.
An error in the foregoing inscription has been corrected by
the venerable Stow: "Whereas," said he, "It hath been
far spread abroad by vulgar opinion that the rebel smitten
down so manfully by Sir William Walworth, the then worthy
Lord Maior, was named Jack Straw, and not Wat Tyler, I
thought good to reconcile this rash conceived doubt by such
testimony as I find in ancient and good records. The princi-
pal leaders, or captains, of the commons, were Wat Tyler,
as the first man; the second was John, or Jack, Straw, etc.,
etc."-STow's London.


I was clearing away the weeds from his epitaph, the
little sexton drew me on one side with a mysterious
air, and informed me, in a low voice that once upon
a time, on a-dark wintry night, when the wind was
unruly, howling and whistling, banging about doors
and windows, and twirling weathercocks, so that
the living were frightened out of their beds, and
even the dead could not sleep quietly in their graves,
the ghost of honest Preston, which happened to be
airing itself in the churchyard, was :Irr it ..l by the
well-known call of "waiter," from t!h. B. t'. Head,
and made its sudden appearance in the midst of a
roaring club, just as the parish clerk was singing a
stave from the "mirrie garland of Captain Death;"
to the discomfiture of sundry train-band captains,
and the conversion of an infidel attorney, who be-
came a zealous Christian on the spot, and was never
known to twist the truth afterward except in the
way of business.
I beg it may be remembered that I do not pledge
myself for the authenticity of this anecdote; though
it is well known that the churchyards and by-corners
of this old metropolis are very much infested with
perturbed spirits; and every one must have heard of
the Cock lane ghost, and the apparition that guards
the regalia in the Tower, which has frightened so
many bold sentinels almost out of their wits.
Be all this as it may, this 4obert Preston seems to
have been a worthy successor to the nimble-tongued
Francis, who attended upon the revels of Prince
Hal; to have been equally prompt with his "anon,
anon, sir," and to have transcended his predecessor


in honesty; for Falstaff, the veracity of whose taste
no man will venture to impeach, flatly accuses
Francis of putting lime in his sack; whereas, honest
Preston's epitaph lauds him for the sobriety of his
conduct, the soundness of his wine, and the fairness
of his measure.* The worthy dignitaries of the
church, however, did not appear much captivated
by the sober virtues of the tapster; the deputy or-
ganist, who had a moist look out of the eye, made
some shrewd remark on the abstemiousness of a man
brought up among full hogsheads; and the little sex-
ton corroborated his opinion by a significant wink
and a dubious shake of the head.
Thus far my researches, though they threw much
light on the history of tapsters, fishmongers, and lord
mayors, yet disappointed me in the great object of
my quest, the picture of the Boar's Head Tavern.
No such painting was to be found in the church of
St. Michael's. "Marry and amen!" said I, "here
endeth my research!" So I was giving the matter up,

As this inscription is rife with excellent morality, I tran-
scribe it for the admonition of delinquent tapsters. It is no
doubt the production of some choice spirit, who once fre-
quented the Boar's Head.
Bacchus, to give the toping world surprise,
Produced one sober son, and here he lies.
Though rear'd among full hogsheads, he defied
The charms of wine, and every one beside.
O reader, if to justice thou'rt inclined,
Keep honest Preston daily in thy mind.
He drew good wine, took care to fill his pots,
Had sundry virtues that excused his faults.
You that on Bacchus have the like dependence,
Pray copy Bob, in measure and attendance,

"-1 .


with the air of a baffled antiquary, when my friend
the sexton, perceiving me to be curious in everything
relative to the old tavern, offered to show me the
choice vessels of the vestry, which had been handed
down from remote times, when the parish meetings
had been held at the Boar's Head. These were de-
posited in the parish club-room, which had been
transferred, on the decline of the ancient establish-
ment, to a tavern in the neighborhood.
A few steps brought us to the house, which stands
No. 12 Mile lane, bearing the title of The Mason's
Arms, and is kept by Master Edward Honeyball, the
"l.,lly I .....k of the establishment. It is one of those
little taverns which abound in the heart of the city,
and form the center of gossip and intelligence of the
neighborhood. We entered the bar-room, which was
narrow and darkling; for in these close lanes but few
rays of reflected light are enabled to struggle down
to the inhabitants, whose broad day is at best but a
tolerable twilight. The room was partitioned into
boxes, each containing a table spread with a clean
white cloth, ready for dinner. This showed that the
guests were of the good old stamp, and divided their
day equally, for it was but just one o'clock. At the
lower end of the room was a clear coal fire, before
which a breast of lamb was roasting. A row of
bright brass candlesticks and pewter mugs glistened
along the mantelpiece, and an old-fashioned clock
ticked in one corner. There was something primi-
tive in this medley of kitchen, parlor, and hall, that
carried me back to earlier times, and pleased me.
The place, indeed, was humble, but everything had


that look of order and neatness which bespeaks the
superintendence of a notable English housewife. A
group of amphibious-looking beings, who might be
either fishermen or sailors, were regaling themselves
in one of the boxes. As I was a visitor of rather
higher pretensions, I was ushered into a little mis-
shapen back room, having at least nine corners. It
was lighted by a sky-light, furnished with antiquated
leather chairs, and ornamented with the portrait of
a fat pig. It was evidently appropriated to particu-
lar customers, and I found a shabby gentleman, in a
red nose and oil-cloth hat, seated in one corner, medi-
tating on a half-empty pot of porter.
The old sexton had taken the landlady aside, and
with an air of profound importance imparted to her
my errand. Dame Honeyball was a likely, plump,
bustling little woman, and no bad substitute for that
paragon of hostesses, Dame Quickly. She seemed
delighted with an opportunity to oblige; and hurry-
ing up-stairs to the archives of her house, where the
precious vessels of the parish-club were deposited,
she returned, smiling and courtesying, with them in
her hands.
The first she presented me was a japanned iron to-
bacco-box, of gigantic size, out of which, I was told,
the vestry had smoked at their stated meetings, since
time immemorial; and which was never suffered to
be profaned by vulgar hands or used on common oc-
casions. I received it with becoming reverence; but
what was my delight at beholding on its cover the
identical painting of which I was in quest! There
wri- i-.pl .iv.- t e outside of the Boar's Head Tavern,


and before the door was to be seen the whole conviv-
ial group, at table in full revel, pictured with that
wonderful fidelity and force with which the portraits
of renowned generals and commodores are illustrated
on tobacco boxes for the benefit of posterity. Lest,
however, there should be any mistake, the cunning
limner had warily inscribed the names of Prince Hal
and Falstaff on the bottoms of their chairs.
On the inside of the cover was an inscription,
nearly obliterated, recording that this box was the
gift of Sir Richard Gore, for the use of the vestry
meetings at the Boars 'lead Tavern, and that it was
"repaired and beautified by his successor, Mr. John
Packard, 1767." Such is a faithful description of
this august and venerable relic, and I question
whether the learned Scriblerius contemplated his
Roman shield, or the Knights of the Round Table
the long-sought sangreal, with more exultation.
While I was meditating on it with enraptured gaze,
Dame Honeyball, who was highly gratified by the
interest it excited, put in my hands a drinking cup
or goblet which also belonged to the vestry, and was
descended from the old Boar's Head. It bore the
inscription of havirg been the gift of Francis Wyth-
ers, knight, and was held, she told me, in exceed-
ing great value, being considered very "antyke."
This last opinion was strengthened by the shabby
gentleman with the red nose and oil-cloth hat, and
whom I strongly suspected of being a lineal descen-
dant from the valiant Bardolph. He suddenly aroused
from his meditation on the pot of porter, and casting
a knowing look at the goblet, exclaimed, Ay, ay,


the head don't ache now that made that there
The great importance attached to this memento of
ancient revelry by modern churchwardens at first
puzzled me; but there is nothing sharpens the appre-
hension so much as antiquarian research; for I im-
mediately perceived that this could be no other than
the identical parcel-gilt goblet" on which Falstaff
made his loving but faithless vow to Dame Quickly;
and which would, of course, be treasured up with
care among the regalia of her domains, as a testi-
mony of that solemn contract.*
Mine hostess, indeed, gave me along history how
the goblet had been handed down from generation
to generation. She also entertained me with many
particulars concerning the worthy vestrymen who
have seated themselves thus quietly on the stools of
the ancient roysters of Eastcheap, and, like so many
commentators, utter clouds of smoke in honor of
Shakespeare. These I forbear to relate, lest my
readers should not be as curious in these matters as
myself. Suffice it to say, the neighbors, one and all,
about Eastcheap believe that Falstaff and his merry
crew actually lived and reveled there. Nay, there
are several legendary anecdotes concerning him still
extant among the oldest frequenters of the Mason's
Thou didst swear to me upon a parcel-gilt goblet, sitting
in my Dolphin Chamber, at the round-table, by a sea-coal
fire, on Wednesday in Whitsun- week, when the Prince broke
thy head for likening his father to a singing man of Windsor:
thou didst swear to me then, as I was washing thy wound, to
marry me, and make me my lady, thy wife. Canst thou deny
it?-Henry !V., mart 2


Arms, which they give as transmitted down from
their forefathers; and Mr. M'Kash, an Irish hair-
dresser, whose shop stands on the site of the old
Boar's Head, has several dry jokes of Fat Jack's not
laid down in the books, with which he makes his
customers ready to die of laughter.
I now turned to my friend the sexton to make
some further inquiries, but I found him sunkin pen-
sive meditation. His head had declined a little on
one side; a deep sigh heaved from the very bottom
of his stomach, and, though I could not see a tear
trembling in his eye, yet a moisture was evidently
stealing from the corner of his mouth. I followed
the direction of his eye through the door which stood
open, and found it fixed wistfully on the savory
breast of lamb, roasting in dripping richness before
the fire.
I now called to mind that in the eagerness of my
recondite investigation, I was keeping the poor man
from his dinner. My bowels yearned with sympathy,
and putting in his hand a small token of my gratitude
and good will, I departed with a hearty benediction
on him, Dame Honeyball, and the parish-club of
Crooked lane-not forgetting my shabby but senten-
tious friend in the oil-cloth hat and copper nose.
Thus have I given a "tedious brief" account of
this interesting research; for which, if it prove too
short and unsatisfactory, I can only plead my inex-
perience in this branch of literature, so deservedly
popular at the present day. I am aware that a more
skillful illustrator of the immortal bard would have
swelled the materials I have touched upon to a good


merchantable bulk, comprising the biographies of
William Walworth, Jack Straw, and Robert Preston;
some notice of the eminent fishmonger of St. Mi-
chael's; the history of Eastcheap, great and little;
private anecdotes of Dame Honeyball and her pretty
daughter, whom I have not even mentioned; to say
nothing of a damsel tending the breast of lamb (and
whom, by the way, I remarked to be a comely lass,
with a neat foot and ankle); the whole enlivened by
the riots of Wat Tyler, and illuminated by the great
fire of London.
All this I leave as a rich mine to be worked by fu-
ture commentators; nor do I despair of seeing the to-
bacco-box and the "parcel-gilt goblet," which I have
thus brought to light, the subject of future engrav-
ings, and almost as fruitful of voluminous disserta-
tions and disputes as the shield of Achilles or the
far-famed Portland vase.





I know that all beneath the moon decays,
And what by mortals in this world is brought,
In time's great period shall return to nought,
I know that all the muses' heavenly layes,
With toil of sprite which are so dearly bought,
As idle sounds of few or none are sought,
That there is nothing lighter than mere praise.
THERE are certain half-dreaming moods of mind,
in which we naturally steal away from noise and
glare, and seek some quiet haunt, where we may in-
dulge our reveries, and build our air-castles undis-
turbed. In such a mood I was loitering about the
old gray cloisters of Westminster Abbey, enjoying
that luxury of wandering thought which one is apt
to dignify with the name of reflection; when suddenly
an irruption of madcap boys from Westminster
school, playing at foot-ball, broke in upon the mo-
nastic stillness of the place, making the vaulted pas-
sages and moldering tombs echo with their merriment.
I sought to take refuge from their noise by penetrating
still deeper into the solitudes of the pile, and applied
to one of the vergers for admission to the library.
He conducted me through a portal rich with the
crumbling sculpture of former ages, which opened
upon a gloomy passage leading to the Chapter-nouse,



and the chamber in which D....ni.l ,y Book is de-
posited. Just within the passage is a small door on
the left. To this the verger applied a key; it was
double locked, and opened with some difficulty, as if
seldom used. We now ascended a dark narrow stair-
case, and passing through a second door, entered the
I found myself in a lofty antique hall, the roof
supported by massive joists of old English oak. It
was soberly lighted by a row of Gothic windows at a
considerable height from the floor, and which appar-
ently opened upon the roofs of the cloisters. An
ancient picture of some reverend dignitary of the
church in his robes hung over the fire-place.
Around the hall and in a small gallery were the
books, arranged in carved oaken cases. They con-
sisted 1i "** i ..I1_, of old polemical writers, and were
much more worn by time than use. In the center ot
the library was a solitary table, with two or three
books on it, an inkstand without ink, and a few
pens parched by long disuse. The place seemed
fitted for quiet study and profound meditation. It
was buried deep among the massive walls of the
abbey, and shut up from the tumult of the world.
I could only hear now and then the shouts of the
schoolboys faintly swelling from the cloisters, and
the sound of a bell tolling for prayers, that echoed
soberly along the roofs of the abbey. By degrees
the shouts of merriment grew fainter and fainter,
and at length died away. The bell ceased to toll,
and a profound silence reigned through the dusky


AND OTHER K i.i :-11.". 87

I had taken down a little thick quarto curiously
bound in parchment, with brass clasps, and seated
myself at the table in a venerable elbow chair. In-
stead of reading, however, I was beguiled by the
solemn monastic air and lifeless quiet of the place,
into a train of musing. As I looked around upon the
old volumes in their moldering covers, thus ranged
on the shelves, and apparently never disturbed in
their repose, I could not but consider the library a
kind of literary catacomb, where authors, like mum-
mies, are piously entombed, and left to blacken and
molder in dusty oblivion.
How much, thought I, has each of these volumes,
now thrust aside with such indifference, cost some
aching head--how many weary days? how many sleep-
less nights? How have their authors buried themselves
in the solitude of cells and cloisters, shut themselves
up from the face of man, and the still more blessed
face of nature; and devoted themselves to painful re-
search and intense reflection ? And all for what ?
to occupy an inch of dusty shelf-to have the titles
of their works read now and then in a future age by
some drowsy churchman or casual straggler like
myself; and in another age to be lost even to re-
membrance. Such is the amount of this boasted
immortality. A mere temporary rumor, a local
sound; like the tone of that bell which has just tolled
among these towers, filling the ear for a moment-
lingering transiently in echo-and then passing away,
like a thing that was not !
While I sat half murmuring, half meditating these
unprofitable speculations, with my head resting on


my hand, I was thrumming with the other hand
upon the quarto, until I accidentally loosened the
clasps; when to my utter astonishment, the little
book gave two or three yawns, like one awaking
from a deep sleep ; then a husky hem, and at length
began to talk. At first its voice was very hoarse and
broken, being much troubled by a cobweb which
some studious spider had woven across it ; and
having probably contracted a cold from long ex-
posure to the chills and damps of the abbey. In a
short time, however, it became more distinct, and I
soon found it an exceedingly fluent conversable
little tome. Its language, to be sure, was rather
quaint and obsolete, and its pronunciation what in
the present day would be deemed barbarous; but I
shall endeavor, as far as I am able, to render it in
modern parlance.
It began with railings about the neglect of the
world-about merit being suffered to languish in
obscurity, and other such commonplace topics of
literary repining, and complained bitterly that it had
not been opened for more than two centuries ;-that
the Dean only looked now and then into the library,
sometimes took down a volume or two, trifled with
them for a few moments, and then returned them to
their shelves.
"What a plague do they mean," said the little
quarto, which I began to perceive was somewhat
choleric, "what a plague do they mean by keeping
several thousand volumes of us shut up here, and
watched by a set of old vergers, like so many
beauties in a harem, merely to be looked at now and


then by the Dean ? Books were written to give
pleasure and to be enjoyed ; and I would have a
rule passed that the Dean should pay each of us a
visit at least once a year ; or if he is not equal to the
task, let them once in a while turn loose the whole
school of Westminster among us, that at any rate we
may now and then have an airing."
". "Softly, my worthy friend," replied I, "you are
not aware how much better you are off than most
books of your generation. By being stored away in
this ancient library you are like the treasured remains
of those saints and monarchs which lie enshrined in
the adjoining chapels; while the remains of their
contemporary mortals, left to the ordinary course of
nature, have long since returned to dust."
"Sir," said the little tome, ruffling his leaves and
looking big, "I was written for all the world, not
for the bookworms of an abbey. I was intended to
circulate from hand to hand, like other great con-
temporary works ; but here have I been clasped up
for more than two centuries, and might have silently
fallen a prey to these worms that are playing the
very vengeance with my intestines, if you had not
by chance given me an opportunity of uttering a few
last words before I go to pieces."
"My good friend," rejoined I, "had you been
left to the circulation of which you speak, you
would long ere this have been no more. To judge
from your physiognomy, you are now well stricken
in years ; very few of your contemporaries can be at
present in existence; and those few owe their longev-
ity to being immured like yourself in old libraries;


which, suffer me to add, instead of likening to
harems, you might more properly and gratefully
have compared to those infirmaries attached to re-
ligious establishments, for the benefit of the old and
decrepit, and where, by quiet fostering and no em-
ployment, they often endure to an amazingly good-
for-nothing old age. You talk of your contempo-
raries as if in circulation-where do we meet with
their works ?-what do we hear of Robert Groteste
of Lincoln ? No one could have toiled harder than
he for immortality. He is said to have written nearly
two hundred volumes. He built, as it were, a
pyramid of books to perpetuate his name : but, alas!
the pyramid has long since fallen, and only a few
fragments are scattered in various libraries, where
they are scarcely disturbed even by the antiquarian.
What do we hear of Giraldus Cambrensis, the
historian, antiquary, philosopher, theologian, and
poet ? He declined two bishoprics that he might
shut himself up and write for posterity; but posterity
never inquires after his labors. What of Henry of
Huntingdon, who, besides a learned history of
England, wrote a treatise on the contempt of the
world, which the world has revenged by forgetting
him? What is quoted of Joseph of Exeter, styled
the miracle of his age in classical composition? Of
his three great heroic poems, one is lost forever ex-
cepting a mere fragment ; the others are known only
to a few of the curious in literature ; and as to his
love verses and epigrams, they have entirely dis-
appeared. What is in current use of John Wallis,
the Franciscan who acquired the name of the tree of


life?-of William of M3almsbury; of Simeon of Dur-
ham ; of Benedict of Peterborough; of John Hanvill
of St. Albans; of-- "
Prithee, friend," cried the quarto in a testy tone,
"how old do you think me? You are talking of
authors that lived long before my time, and wrote
either in Latin or French, so that they in a manner
expatriated themselves, and deserved to be forgotten;*
but I, sir, was ushered into the world from the press
of the renowned Wynkyn de Worde. I was written
in my own native tongue, at a time when the language
had become fixed; and, indeed, I was considered a
model of pure and elegant English."
[I should observe that these remarks were couched
in such intolerably antiquated terms that I have had
infinite difficulty in rendering them into modern
"I cry you mercy," said I, "for mistaking your
age; but it matters little; almost all the writers of
your time have likewise passed into forgetfulness;
and De Worde's publications are mere literary rare-
ties among book-collectors. The purity and stability
of language, too, on which you found your claims to
perpetuity, have been the fallacious dependence of
authors of every age, even back to the times of the
worthy Robert of Gloucester, who wrote his history

In Latin and French hath many soueraine wittes had
great delyte to endyte, and have many noble things fulfilde.
but certes there ben some that speaken their poisye in Frenc
of which speche the Frenchmen have as good a fantasy
we have in hearing of Frenchmen's Englishe.
CHAUCER'S Testament of Lovk.


in rhymes of mongrel Saxon.* Even now, many
talk of Spenser's 'well of pure English undefiled,' as
if the language ever sprang from a well or fountain
head, and was not rather a mere confluence of
various tongues, perpetually subject to changes and
intermixtures. It is this which has made English
literature so extremely mutable, and the reputation
built upon it so fleeting. Unless thought can be
committed to something more permanent and un-
changeable than such a medium, even thought must
share the fate of everything else and fall into decay.
This should serve as a check upon the vanity and ex-
ultation of the most popular writer. He finds the
language in which he has embarked his fame gradu-
ally altering, and subject to the dilapidations of
time and the caprice of fashion. He looks back and
beholds the early authors of his country, once the
favorites of their day, supplanted by modern writers
a few short ages have covered them with obscurity,
and their merits can only be relished by the quaint
taste of the bookworm. And such, he anticipates,
will be the fate of his own work, which, however it
may be admired in its day, and held up as a nodel

Holinshed, in his Chronicle, observes, Afterwards, also,
by diligent travel of Geffry Chaucer and John Gowrie, in the
time of Richard the Second, and after them of John Scogan
and John Lydgate, monke of Berrie, our said toong was
brought to an excellent passe, notwithstanding that it never
came unto the type of perfection until the time of Queen
Elizabeth, wherein John Jewell, Bishop of Sarum, John Fox,
and sundrie learned and excellent writers, have fully accom
polished the ornature of the same, to their great praise and
immortal commendation."


of purity, will, in the course of years, grow anti-
quated and obsolete, until it shall become almost as
unintelligible in its native land as an Egyptian obe-
lisk, or one of those Runic inscriptions, said to exist
in the deserts of Tartary. I declare," added I, with
some emotion, "when I contemplate a modern
library, filled with new works in all the bravery of
rich gilding and binding, I feel disposed to sit down
and weep; like the good Xerxes, when he surveyed
his army, ranked out in all the splendor of military
array and reflected that in one hundred years not one
of them would be in existence!"
Ah," said the little quarto with a heavy sigh, "I
see how it is; these modern scribblers have superseded
all the good old authors. I suppose nothing is read
now-a-days but Sir Philip Sidney's Arcadia, Sack-
ville's stately plays and Mirror for Magistrates, or the
fine-spun euphuisms of the 'unparalleled John Lyly.'"
"There you are again mistaken," said I; "the
writers whom you suppose in vogue, because they
happened to be so when you were last in circulation,
have long since had their day. Sir Philip Sidney's
Arcadia, the immortality of which was so fondly
predicted by his admirers,* and which, in truth, was

"* Live ever sweet book; the simple image of his gentle
witt, and the golden pillar of his noble courage; and ever
notify unto the world that thy writer was the secretary of
eloquence, the breath of the muses, the honey bee of the dain-
tyest flowers of witt and arte, the pith of morale and the in-
tellectual virtues, the arme of Bellona in the field, the tongue
of Suada in the chamber, the spirit of Practice in esse, and
the paragon of excellency in print.
HARVEY'S Pierce's Supererogation.


full of noble thoughts, delicate images, and graceful
turns of language, is now scarcely ever mentioned.
Sackville has strutted into obscurity; and even Lyly,
though his writings were once the delight of a court,
and apparently perpetuated by a proverb, is now
scarcely known even by name. A whole crowd of
authors who wrote and wrangled at the time have
likewise gone down with all their writings and their
controversies. Wave after wave of succeeding litera-
ture has lolled over them, until they are buried so
deep that it is only now and then that some industry
ousdiver after fragments of antiquity brings up a
specimen for the gratification of the curious.
"For my part," I continued, "I consider this
mutability of language a wise precaution of Provi-
dence for the benefit of the world at large, and of
authors in particular. To reason from analogy: we
daily behold the varied and beautiful tribes of vege-
tables springing up, flourishing, adorning the fields
for a short time, and then fading into dust, to make
way for their successors. Were not this the case, the
fecundity of nature would be a grievance instead of
a blessing: the earth would groan with rank and ex-
cessive vegetation, and its surface become a tangled
wilderness. In like manner the works of genius and
learning decline and make way for subsequent pro-
ductions. Language gradually varies, and with it
fade away the writings of authors who have flour
ished their allotted time; otherwise the creative pow-
ers of genius would overstock the world, and the
mind would be completely bewildered in the endless
mazes of literature. Formerly there were some re-


straints on this excessive multiplication: works had
to be transcribed by hand, which was a slow and
laborious operation; they were written either on
parchment, which was expensive, so that one work
was often erased to make way for another; or on
papyrus, which was fragile and extremely perishable.
Authorship was a limited and unprofitable craft,
pursued chiefly by monks in the leisure and solitude
of their cloisters. The accumulation of manuscripts
was slow and costly, and confined almost entirely to
monasteries. To these circumstances it may, in
some measure, be owing that we have not been in-
undated by the intellect of antiquity; that the fount-
ains of thought have not been broken up and modern
genius drowned in the deluge. But the inventions
of paper and the press have put an end to all these
restraints: they have made every one a writer, and
enabled every mind to pour itself into print, and
diffuse itself over the whole intellectual world. The
consequences are alarming. The stream of literature
has swollen into a torrent-augmented into a river-
expanded into a sea. A few centuries since, five or six
hundred manuscripts constituted a great library; but
what would you say to libraries, such as actually exist,
containing three or four hundred thousand volumes;
legions of authors at the same time busy; and a press
going on with fearfully increasing activity, to double
and quadruple the number? Unless some unforeseen
mortality should break out among the progeny of the
Muse, now that she has become so prolific, I tremble
for posterity. I fear the mere fluctuation of lan.
guage will not be sufficient, Criticism may do much:


it increases with the increase of literature, and re-
sembles one of those salutary checks on population
spoken of by economists. All possible encourage-
ment, therefore, should be given to the growth of
critics, good or bad. But I fear all will be in vain;
let criticism do what it may, writers will write, print-
ers will print, and the world will inevitably be over-
stocked with good books. It will soon be the em-
ployment of a life-time merely to learn their names.
Many a man of passable information at the present
day roads scarcely anything but reviews, and before
long a man of erudition will be little better than a
mere walking catalogue."
My very good sir," said the little quarto, yawn-
ing most drearily in my face, "excuse my interrupt-
ing you, but I perceive you are rather given to prose.
I would ask the fate of an author who was making
some noise just as I left the world. His reputation,
however, was considered quite temporary. The
learned shook their heads at him, for he was a poor,
half-educated varlet, that knew little of Latin and
nothing of Greek, and had been obliged to run the
country for deer-stealing. I think his name was
Shakespeare. I presume he soon sunk into oblivion."
"On the contrary," said I, "it is owing to that
very man that the literature of his period has ex
perienced a duration beyond the ordinary term of
English literature. There arise authors now and
then who seem proof against the mutability of lan-
guage, because they have rooted themselves in the
unchanging principles of human nature. They are
like gigantic trees that we sometimes see on the banks


of a stream, which, by their vast and deep roots,
penetrating through the mere surface, and laying
hold on the very foundations of the earth, preserve
the soil around them from being swept away by the
overflowing current, and hold up many a neighbor-
ing plant, and perhaps worthless weed to perpetuity.
Such is the case with Shakespeare, whom we behold,
defying the encroachments of time, retaining in
modern use the language and literature of his day,
and giving duration to many an indifferent author
merely from having flourished in his vicinity. But
even he, I grieve to say, is gradually assuming the
tint of age, and his whole form is overrun by a pro.
fusion of commentators, who, like clambering vines
and creepers, almost bury the noble plant that up-
holds them."
Here the little quarto began to heave his sides and
chuckle, until at length he broke out into a plethoric
fit of laughter that had well-nigh choked him by rea.
son of his excessive corpulency. "Mighty well!"
cried he, as soon as he could recover breath, "mighty
well! and so you would persuade me that the litera-
ture of an age is to be perpetuated by a vagabond
deer-stealer! by a man without learning! by a poet!
forsooth-a poet!" And here he wheezed forth an-
other fit.of laughter.
I confess that I felt somewhat nettled at this rude-
ness, which, however, I pardoned on account of his
having flourished in a less polished age. I deter-
mined, nevertheless, not to give up my point.
"Yes," resumed I I....j-i' '1,, "a poet; for of all
writers, lie has the best chance for immortality.


Others may write from the head, but he writes from
the heart, and the heart will always understand him.
He is the faithful portrayer of Nature, whose features
are always the same, and always interesting. Prose
writers are voluminous and unwieldy; their pages
crowded with commonplaces, and their thoughts ex-
panded into tediousness. But with the true poet
everything is terse, touching, or brilliant. He
gives the choicest thoughts in the choicest language.
He illustrates them by everything that he sees most
striking in nature and art. He enriches them by
pictures of human life, such as it is passing before
him. His writings, therefore, contain the spirit, the
aroma, if I may use the phrase, of the age in which
he lives. They are caskets which inclose within a
small compass the wealth of the language-its family
jewels, which are thus transmitted in a portable
form to posterity. The setting may occasionally be
,i,';., 1'o. and require now and then to be renewed,
as in the case of Chaucer; but the brilliancy and in-
trinsic value of the gems continue unaltered. Cast
a look back over the long reach of literary history.
What vast valleys of dullness, filled with monkish
legends and academical controversies! What bogs
of theological speculations! What dreary wastes of
metaphysics! Here and there only do we behold
the heavep-illumined bards, elevated like beacons
on their widely-separated heights, to transmit the
pure light of poetical intelligence from age to age."*

Thorow earth, and waters deepe,
The pen by skill doth passe:
And featly nyps the world's abuse,
And shoes us in a glass,

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