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All through the long, long polar day,
flave way with many a hollow groan,
And with many a surly roar;
But it murmured and threatened on every side,
And closed where he sailed before.
Ho I see ye not, my merry men,
8ir John, Sir John, 'tis bitter cold,
Bright summer goes, dark winter comes—
The dripping icebergs dipped and rose,
The summer's gone, the winter's come.
The summer goes, the winter comes—
The cruel ice came floating on.
And closed beneath the lee,
Till the thickening waters dashed no more;
Twas ice around, behind, before—
My God I there is no sea I
What think you of the whaler now?
Down sank the baleful crimson sun;
The snow came down, storm breeding storm,
And on the decks was laid;
Till the weary sailor, sick at heart,
Sank down beside his spade.
Sir John, the night is black and long,
Tho night is neither bright nor short,
What hope can scale this Icy wall,
The summer went, tho winter came—
The winter went, the summer went,
The winter came around;
But the hard, green ice was strong as death,
And the voice of hope sank to a breath,
Yet caught at every sound.
Hark! heard you not the noise of guns?
Hurra I hurra I the Esquimaux
Sir John, where are the English fields,
Be still, bo still, my brave sailors I
You shall see the fields again,
And smell the scent of tho opening flowers,
The grass, and the waving grain.
Oh! when shall I see my orphan child?
Be still, be still, my brave sailors!
Aht bitter, bitter grows the cold,
Oh! think you, good Sir John Franklin,
Twas cruel, Sir John, to send us here,
Oh 1 whether we starve to death alone,
THE WASHINGTON NATIONAL MONUMENT.
BI TBI EIv. J. H. ALLEN.
On the border of the broad and beautiful Potomac, due west of the Capitol and south of the President's house, on a spot in full view for ten miles down the river, till it sweeps round the bend at Mount Vernon, stands the beginning of the giant structure that is to be.
At a distance, it might be taken for a rather ungainly block of white dwelling-houses, but for the clear lines and surface it presents against the horizon. On a pyramidal base of dark stone, near twenty feet high, some fiveand-thirty feet of the marble obelisk are already built; and by the end of the season, it will be at least a hundred feet above the ground. Stone to the value of five thousand dollars is already prepared for use; and a steam engine is in working order for hoisting it to its resting-place. So much of the work is done and paid for, and about ten thousand dollars were on hand to commence operations on the first of April.
Agents are oanvassing the country in every direction. About a thousand dollars were received in one week; and funds are coming in pretty steadily, at the rate of about three thousand a month. I saw lately a handful of golden eagles, the Chickasaws' gift of two hundred dollars "in testimony of their love for their great father." The Choctaws are to send their contributions in the shape of a block of stone. The several states of the Union are contributing their monumental blocks from their own quarries, and probably not one will be unrepresented in it. The Masons and the Odd Fellows have appropriated each Order its gift. About two hundred companies and associations have offered their subscriptions in granite and marble, at an average cost of about fifty dollars. Children's schools have sent their offerings in little sums; banks and capitalists in larger ones. About half a million more will be required to fill out the grand outlines of the plan, to say nothing of the decorative appendages below.
The first project of some such great national structure dates back as far as 1783, when Congress passed a resolution to erect an equestrian statue of Washington in the national capital, wherever that might be. In 1804, the subject was taken up again in connexion with the public testimonials of mourning, after
Washington's death. But nothing was done till 1833, when a "Washington National Monument Society" was formed with Chief Justice Marshall at its head, and measures were taken to gather funds. By way of apportioning them as widely as possible among the people, subscriptions were limited to a dollar; it being calculated that if only a quarter of that were given by every working man, it would be more than enough for the most imposing monument in the world. But one dollar is so little towards a million, that to many it seemed nothing at all; and some who would have freely given a thousand, refused and ridiculed the one. Then came the "crash" of 1837; the propitious season went by; only thirty thousand dollars were obtained; and the ambitious project went to sleep.
It woke again in 1847. While it slept, its seed had been growing, and had now expanded to fifty thousand dollars. Some thirty thousand more were added by diligent endeavours, and it was judged time to begin. The plan adopted was one quite as remarkable for vastness of outline as for beauty of detail; and it had this special recommendation, that its grandest feature must bo completed first, and may stand by itself as long as it is thought desirable. The address at the laying of the corner-stone, was to be delivered by John Quincy Adams, on the 22d of February, 1848; but that day he was dying in the Capitol, and the Hon. Speaker Winthrop fulfilled his office on the fourth of July following.
In judging of the plan from the engraving, one should translate it by the aid of his imagination into the towering magnitude it is intended to have. As to the Doric colonnade and the circular "Pantheon" with its Italian balustrade, they are merely representatives for the present of a part of the architect's conception, and are never likely to be built. A great deal of affliction and indignation in respect of them, has gone to waste. I will endeavour first to do justice to his intention, and then suggest the modifications which he himself has hinted at, and which the public taste will doubtless demand.
The main thing in the structure is an obelisk, fifty-five feet square at the base, and intended to be six hundred feet high. Some intimations have been thrown out of reducing it to five hundred; but the popular will should suffer no abatement. It is not the American temper to retreat! The full altitude will be a hundred and fifty feet higher than the cross of St. Peter's, and a hundred and twenty higher than the largest pyramid. The plain shaft on such a scale, will be the noblest of monuments. Its beautiful proportions are not given in any engraving that I have seen. From a thickness of fifteen feet, the walls diminish at that height to thirty inches, leaving an open space, or well-room, of twenty-five feet square. I asked the architect one day where he could find a capstone large enough to cover it. His answer was, it should be roofed with an enormous flat pyramid of glass! The ascent is to be by flights of iron steps at the four sides, far easier than the dizzy whirl by which one rotates to the top of the monuments at Bunker Hill and Baltimore. The hand-rail, being hollow, will serve as a conductor for gas; and the whole of this prodigious vertical cavern shall be as light as day!
What will make it particularly interesting as a national structure, is the emulous sending in of the blocks of stone, before spoken of, from states and associations. Michigan, we hear, will send a block of pure native copper. Minesota B»s transmitted a slab of the red pipestone whereof calumets are made—a stone held sacred among the Indians, both curious and valuable. California has only to follow it up by a block of gold quartz, of which a whole ridge of mountains there is said to be composed. Two noble specimens of gray marble are already on the ground from Tennessee. Arkansas and Maine, have each a block there with the unadorned name of the state. One of the purest white, bears the inscription, "The City of Washington to its Founder." The Delaware stone has a medallion head of Washington, three inches in relief, with an inscription of workmanship to correspond. The state contributions are to be built into conspicuous positions at the landings of the stairs; and, with the others, will make a decoration as unique as beautiful. It will be a running inscription of five hundred feet: This it the Contribution of a Continent. And withal there is a pleasant contrast between this and the old monuments of Egypt (which it rivals) in the republican spirit which is building and adorning it, for not only is it a free gift, and not the task-work of a despot, but the men who labour on it have given out of their wages, some five, and some ten dollars each as their contribution; and several of them something besides in labour.
As to the circular structure—which, to say nothing of its incongruous architecture, gives
such a muffled and uncomfortable look to the engraving—I have the best reason to think that the architect himself is not over-partial to it. It was thrown off hastily, simply to hint at his intention; and has been, unfortunately, reduplicated and perpetuated in ten thousand indifferent lithographs, to the prejudice of the total design, and the obscuring of his idea. An Egyptian structure, with American details, (representing the characteristic productions of our continent in place of the symbolic scrawls that cover the vast fabrics of Thebes) seems to bo his own preference, and is certainly capable of very great richness and beauty; but for purposes of mere explanation, the drawing given is as good as any other.
The intention of the lower portion, then, is to symbolize the entire nation, as the shaft above commemorates its model man. For it is a "National" as well as a " Washington" monument. The plinth on which it rests is a vast crypt, or arched structure, forming a platform or terrace three hundred feet square, and twenty-five feet high. Besides the needful offices, &c., for the persons in charge, it might serve as a national mausoleum of the illustrious dead of our country, and something of the associations might in time be gathered about the spot, which make Westminster Abbey and Santa Croce holy ground. The circular temple standing upon this elevated terrace, is two hundred and fifty feet across, and seventy-five feet high. Spreading either way from the porch or vestibule (surmounted by a colossal sculptured group) is a circular row of Doric columns forty-five feet high and seven or eight in diameter; the scrolls in the entablature being the escutcheons of the several States. This colonnade forms a covered gallery of magnificent dimensions, adorned with colossal statues of eminent men, say the signers of the Declaration. Entering by a lofty portal (here represented as something like forty feet in height), you come to an interior gallery, lighted from above, and adapted for the display of banners, pictures, and statuary on the largest scale. The entire circuit of this gallery would be about five hundred feet. Here, again, in the course of time, would be gathered a majestic assembly of our statesmen, Greenough's Jove-like Washington, perhrps, presiding in the solemn council. The elevated terrace above, and the apartments for various purposes that might be formed in the waste room behind the Doric entablature—itself twenty-five feet high—need no detailed description. Above them all, towers the great Obelisk to the additional height of five hundred feet.
How far the complex idea of such a structure as a monumental work justifies so diversified a blending of styles and shapes, different persons will judge differently. By one plan the Egyptian style is substituted throughout; and by another, the lower portion is left off entirely, leaving the obelisk to tower in its naked height, and providing only for the needful offices in a simpler plinth or base. Before the majestic shaft is finished, there will be time to decide.
One consideration has been stated by the committee of the Massachusetts Legislature, quite fatal one should think, to any plan that so hugs and obscures the lower portion of the obelisk. It is, that no adequate conception can be given of the magnitude of the monument as a whole. To one standing near, the lofty colonnade will almost hide the shaft; and the only close view of it will be one which cuts off a hundred feet. These hundred feet, of the most elaborate workmanship of all, will be worse than wasted—only in the way. It is only by standing at the base and following up the line that almost loses itself in the clouds, that one can get the full feeling which it is meant to impress. To do it in imagination even now, standing at the bottom of what is only begun, is more impressive, perhaps, than the effect of the whole will be, if thus carried out. Still, one feels a sympathy with that splendid idea of the grand gallery, where sculpture, and banners, and historical paintings might have a fitting exhibition. Why could there not be a terrace or platform, say two hundred feet square and the height of the present beautiful entrance, flanked at each
corner by a temple of true Egyptian, or if desirable embraced by it on three sides, as a hollow court?
This is one of the points that invite the critical judgment of the whole nation. We all have an interest in saying that the magnificent and unmatched shaft shall stand "in naked majesty" against the open sky. And we all have an interest in carrying out at least this grand and unexceptionable feature to completion. It is already one of the rallying points of our patriotic sentiment. Already state after state has expressed its loyalty by inscriptions on the blocks of marble and granite to be built into its walls. "Indiana knows no North, no South, nothing but the Union." Delaware, "The first to accept will be the last to desert the Constitution." Massachusetts declares that " The Country is safe, while the Memory of Washington is Revered." Louisiana, Kentucky, and Maryland, and I know not how many more, have caused similar sentiments to be recorded on their enduring gifts. It is an interesting thing to us that it was commenced and is growing up side by side and step by step with the Smithsonian Institution. Both are the property of the Nation, and should be watched with a national and jealous regard. And while one is labouring to supply two of our great wants, a generous scheme of scientific operations, and a library commensurate with the expanding culture of our people, the other will form a triumphal crown to the splendid array of publio institutions, that are slowly growing up in the capital of the Republic.
THE DANCING LESSON.
Whew leaves are adance In the aspen high,
Mother dear, mother dear, far o'er the sea,
Watch how the wares come dancing to me;
The small boat hops to tho top of each crest,
Too happy for languor, too happy for rest;
Ah what do you think, mother dear, they would say,
Should I join awhile in their frolic to-day?
A nod and a smile, and away she flew
To the woods she loved and the waters blue;
But the mother sighed, with a thought between
A hope and a fear, for that cheek's soft sheen
Told her heart that too soon the Vorld would claim
The joy, now her sweetest of joys to name. .
And a vision rose of those happy feet
But Heaven will guard what our love now rears
THE PROPHET'S CHASTENING.
BY NARY YOUNG.
The word of the Lord came unto me, saying; Son of man. behold, I take away from thee the desire of thine ej« with a stroke: yet neither shalt thou mourn nor weep, neither shall thy tears run down. Forbear to cry, make no mourning for the dead, bind the tire of thine head upon thee, and put on thy shoes upon thy feet, and cover not thy lips, and eat not the bread of men.
So I spake unto the people in the morning: and at eveu my wife died; and I did in the morning as I was commanded.—Ezekiel xxiv. 15-18.
Thk loneliest river of Chaldca lay
Grief and caro
There was a creaturo with an angel brow And soft, dark, floating tresses, who bad dwelt Within the prophet's home. There was a hand, Fair as the gleaming ivory of Tyre, Whose light, caressing touch failed not to smooth The deep lines from his forehead, and could woo His spirit oft from its dread tension back To gentlest joy.—Oh! beautiful she was, And bright, and young, and her rich maiden heart And peerless beauty, all, were freely given To the stern prophet. Nought to her were locks Of shining darkness, and the pomegranate bloom On youthful cheeks, when he stood calmly up, And to the high commission sealed in light— In Heaven's own kindling glory on his front— Strong rebel hearts that yielded not would stoop; And if at times an awe almost too deep Came o'er her love, she thought of other hours When he, so raised above humanity, So clothed in majesty by God's own hand, In very human weariness would seek An humbler ministry. She was the link, The one pure, priceless link, through which he felt Sweet drawings of a human brotherhood; Yet she, for Israel's sake, must die.
Came to the prophet's pillow, and the hum
Looked up with dewy eyes. With one brief prayer
The iron lamp hung low,