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MERCHANT OF VENICE.
Even if my
actions. So that, in all ages, bad men, wresting contemptuous anger, he styled a low bred the truth of God to their own destruction, have rascal ; no, he'd die first.” discovered, in holy writ, religious pleas for Garrett, of course, was aware of the dark their worst crimes.
and sudden trouble which had come upon his
beloved home, and had heard many of the comCHAPTER III.
munications upon the matter which had passed ANTO.-I pray theo hear me speak,
between his parents, and especially this last SHYLOCK — "I'H havo my bond. I will not hear thee speak. I'll have my bond, and, therefore, speak no more.
outburst of haughty determination of his
father. THERE was no small astonishment and dismay He mused within himself "My father, I in the Carberry Grange household when Mr. cannot but think, carries it too high. It is MacDuffos lawyer made application to Garrett's true the Rowans have never stooped to ask father, for an instant liquidation of his client's favour or compassion from one of lower social bond. Mr. Rowan, beset by the evil circum- status than themselves. But, neither, has a stances of the times, had been of late the Rowan ever been in such a desperate case as subject of dreadful anxieties. From personal that which, from causes beyond control, has and relative difficulties, trouble had rolled in now come upon my father. upon him like a flood. Gloomy apprehensions, " What if I were to make application to this in regard to the future, often flung ominous Mr. MacDuff myself ? he has in many times shadows over his mind, but such an eventuality, and ways professed to like me. as now threatened him, never, for an instant, father had consented to make his humble court had been anticipated ; in fact, nothing could to him, why, he couldn't do it-he'd fret and have been further from his thoughts.
chafe under the attempt, and words would pass “ What can this MacDuff mean?” he ex- between the two men that would lead to anyclaimed. "It is one of the most selfish and thing but a successful negotiation. Besides, unprincipled moves that ever was made by one my father's present difficulty has arisen calling himself a man. God have mercy on us, altogether upon my account.
Had he not who could have looked for such an abominable been ambitious concerning my future, he would piece of sharp practice from a neighbour, and not now be in the cruel toils of this wily one, too, that always carried a plausible face to creditor. I am bound, therefore, both in wards me whenever I had the ill-luck to meet honour and gratitude, to do whatever I can to him. But its-after all-only of a piece with get him free, and, God helping me, I may the fellow's antecedents," he added, “and if I succeed in my endeavour.” had only justly considered the matter what else Garrett Rowan on the following day precould I have expected from one of his breed— sented himself at Mr. MacDuff's residence. A a fellow that has drunk in with his mother's lad sixteen years of age come to plead for his milk the grasping and rapacious trading spirit. house with a man of three times his years, and But I'll baffle the fellow. I can surely find hardened in the ways of the world. some friend that will come to my assistance.” enquiry he was told Mr. MacDuff was within,
Mr. Rowan set off that very day to inter- and he requested to see him. view some of his, reputedly, monied friends. Mr. MacDuff was far from experiencing Alas ! his own condition of exhausted resources pleasure when the name of his visitor was was too common, far and wide in the district. announced. He greatly suspected that his The terrible famine had produced a general coming had something to do with the mortgage state of financial embarrassment. Indeed some foreclosure, and yet he could not quite underof his old friends, whom he solicited, said, with stand how it was that the son of his debtor, and downcast look, that they had been on the eve not the debtor himself, had come to plead with of asking from him the very favour which he him. “Can it be his confounded pride ?” he had come to request from themselves. The hard asked himself, or the persuasion that its a pressed and needy Mr. Rowan could obtain in forlorn hope, that has prompted him to send no direction promise or hope, and it would be this mere stripling to me? In either caso, impossible to describe his despairing state of however, it will come to the same thing, for mind upon his return to his dwelling.
I've made up my mind, before God, to oust His wife, trying to discover a way of escape him." from the dreadful crisis of affairs which had When Mr. MacDuff entered the apartment come upon them, suggested a personal appeal to into which his visitor had been sent, he found MacDuff's good feeling and generosity. But her Garrett standing at the upper end. His first husband's Irish pride rose up to its full height at impulse was to offer him his hand and say the very idea, and, boiling over with indignation, “ how glad he was to see him," but the next he passionately exclaimed, “ that never should moment something within rebuked such a a Rowan go, cap in hand, to one whom in his hypocritical show of friendship, and he merely
Upon said, “Please take a seat, Master Rowan. I bond, and that Garrett—if he'd only do what have been told you wish to speak with me.” was proper-should exercise his energies, else
“ Thank you,” said Garrett, “ I'd rather where in helping him to do so." stand, Sir. I have come, Mr. MacDuff, to talk With a heart almost bursting with anger about a matter which, as you will know, un- and grief Garrett Rowan was wending his way speakably concerns me.”
homeward. He was on foot, having walked the “Oh, yes," replied Mr. MacDuff, “your two or three miles between Carberry Grange father, I suppose, has sent you with some and Mr. MacDuff's residence, when, with meesage concerning that bond, which ceercum- head bent sadly over his breast, he was surstances, I regret to say, have compelled me to prised, about a quarter of a mile upon
the road, put into eexecution."
by a girl's silvery voice, which, calling him by Mr. MacDuff's conscience told him that his name, addressed him. It was the voice of Mr. closing statement was a lie; and the lad to MacDuff's daughter, Jessie, and though Garrett whom it was spoken was also aware of the and she had but met once or twice, he at once same undoubted fact. He gave the utterer recognised her. before him a stern look, which meant as much, She was about his own age, and, verging but took no further notice of the falsehood. upon an early and comely womanhood, was
“No," commenced Garrett, “my father possessed of no mean personal attraction. Her knows nothing of my coming-perhaps would hair, falling in glossy curls over her shoulders, not sanction it-but as a son whose parent, on was of a light auburn shade ; her eyes were of his account, has got into sore difficulty, I a tender blue, her complexion clear, and her bave ventured of myself to come to you, features regular. She was, in truth, that Mr. MacDuff, to appeal to your kindness and “ bonnie lassie” which her father in his fond merciful consideration. My father's debt to admiration called her. you, you must know, Sir, at any other time In a room adjoining she had heard most of would be but a small matter; at a day's notice what had taken place between Mr. MacDuff he could easily have met three times the and Garrett, and her honest and sympathetic amount, but, at this hour, things are in that Scotch heart was grieved and distressed beyond dreadful
pass that immediate payment of your measure. She had, in strong emotion, hastened demand is impossible ; and if you force a settle- from the house, anticipating by a little Garrett's ment, I fear it will lead to a virtual confisca- departure. Her intention was to intercept him, tion of our property."
and tell him her thoughts and feelings upon This was Mr. MacDuff's own settled convic- the heartless conduct of her father. On the tion, and it was upon this supposition he had way suggestions, also, of what was due to a acted. He was glad, however, to have his parent came in upon her mind--and she belief upon the matter confirmed by his debtor's thoroughly believed in a child's duty of honour son, and the inward satisfaction which he felt --but, still pitying with all her young soul the produced a slight change upon his countenance. Rowans, of whose high character and splendid
Poor Garrett, noticing this, mistook it for a benevolence she of late bad heard so much, she token of relenting, and with a still more could not resist the impulse of clearing herself passionate entreaty he urged forbearance upon from any supposed complicity in a meditated his father's creditor. He spoke, however, to a act which outraged her whole moral nature. man of flint, whose avaricious soul had set itself With face flushed from her hurried walk upon a most desirable prize, and which, almost and inward excitement, she said — within his grasp, he could not think of relin- “ Mr. Garrett, I hope you will forgive my quishing “It would be an unpardonable forwardness in addressing you, but, having weakness on my part,” was Mr. MacDuff's heard a good deal of what passed between you reflection.
and my father, I felt, Sir, as though I must speak It would take too long to record the whole to you. As a daughter I do not wish to say of the interview between the pleading son and anything hard of my parent—God forbid ; but the covetous neighbour. It ended, however, in I assure you, Mr. Garrett, that neither my Garrett's leaving upon being told, “That a mother nor myself have given approval to his youngster like him could know little or nothing present proceedings ; on the contrary, when it of business matters, especially such as the one came to our knowledge, which it did accihe came about. That it was almost impertinent dentally only a day or two ago, we entered our for him to interfere. That there was no doubt, protest, Mr. Garrett, against it. But some even, bis own father would say so; and that unaccountable spell has come over my father's his duty was not to remonstrate, nor whine usual upright nature ; I cannot tell how to like a child before him, Mr. MacDuff
, who was account for it, and he insists that he must and only standing upon his unqueestionable rights, will have payment of your father's bond. but to counsel his father to settle at once the Would to God we could move him from his
“The world was all before them, where to choose
but of this I fear there is little hope. gloomy thoughts, and yet more than once the And I have hastened to tell you how much I face of Jessie MacDuff-very beautiful in its grieve over the whole matter, and how deep is display of deep feeling and nobleness came in my concern both for you, Mr. Garrett, and all upon bis meditation, like momentary bursts of in your home at Carberry Grange," and into the sunshine through occasional rifts in the leaden tone of her closing words the young girl threw vault of a beclouded heaven. an intensity of feeling. Garrett was absorbed in trouble, and almost
CHAPTER IV. stunned with sorrow, yet he could not but admire, young as he was, the beautiful face of
Their place of rest, and Providence their guide." her that spoke to him, to which moral It would be tedious to describe the law enthusiasm and heart-felt sympathy had lent processes painfully and eagerly gone through an additional charm.
in the struggle of the Rowans to hold their “I thank you, I deeply thank you, Miss estate, and of Mr. MacDuff to get his overMacDuff,” he said, " for your kind expressions. coming grasp upon it. It will be sufficient to My father and his household have indeed fallen say that the issue of the contest was in favour into a sad and desperate case—one never dreamt of the avaricious creditor-Carberry Grange of by us. Would to God that I had not been the was set up for sale, and Mr. MacDuff, through occasion, nor your father the cause of it. How- an agent, purchased it for little over a third of ever, since matters are, it seems, to come to the its value in the Land Auction Mart of the Enworst, why, I suppose we must only make up cumbered Estates Court, Dublin. Low as was our minds to bear it. The Rowans have never the price, however, fifteen hundred pounds or so wanted courage in active fight. We must now remained to be handed over to the dispossessed show our courage in calm and patient en- Rowans, after paying off all encumbrances. durance; as for myself the remembrances of the It was felt to be a miserable salvage. All kind words you have spoken, Miss MacDuff, that had given them social position and dignity will help me to fortitude.”
in the eyes of their neighbours was gone from “ Do you mean it?" she said, a smile of them for ever; and with hearts proud as pleasure lighting up her face. Then, with some before, they were forced down to a despicable coyness and hesitation, taking a jewelled ring grade in the conception of the general comfrom her finger, she added, “Can you bring munity, namely, one poor and proud, the objects yourself, Mr. Garrett, to accept a trifle from at once of pity and of scorn. the daughter of one whom you must regard The day of final parting from their long and an enemy? Perhaps I should not offer it you, well-loved home was one never to be forgotten and you may consider my conduct strange, but in the Rowan history. Mr. Rowan, the father, our present interview is peculiar. Do take fell unconscious to the ground when the writ it Mr. Garrett-it is a peace offering,” and she of ejectment was served upon him. stretched her hand, holding the piece of likely saved his alarmed and agitated wife jewellery, towards him. “ It will help you to from a similar disaster, for, as is well-known, bear my words of sympathy in mind you know, one shock is often neutralized in its effect by the and will also be a token to me, that you do not experience of another. The poor lady, howinclude me in the feeling of resentment which ever, was pale as death, and “trembled exceedI know you cannot but bear towards my ingly.” father.”
After an anxious period, through the use of The lad stood for a moment or two silent, powerful restoratives, her husband was brought surprised by the unexpected act of the lady— back to conscious life, but it was only with a and also questioning within himself what he broken heart, which not long afterwards termishould do, and how he should bear himself nated his earthly existence. towards one of a family whose head meditated Garrett bore himself more bravely than he ruin to his home, and who had recently insulted expected in this crisis of the family history. him. At last, thinking over her generous It was because he had previously steeled his conduct and kind words, and wishful to prove, mind to the worst, and submissively contemas she had desired, his acquittal of her from plated it. He had, however, an arduous and taking any part in the covetous and iniquitous melancholy task of it-aiding those dear to him scheme of her father, he took from her hand as his own life, utterly consumed with sorrowthe proffered gift, and then, with a gallantry and feeling deep down in the anguish of his beyond his years, he pressed it to his lips, heart all the while, that were it not for him looking into her eyes all the time with an and his father's fond desire to further his expression of admiration and thankfulness. interests, this catastrophe had not befallen the
The resumption of his way homeward Carberry household. restored to Garrett's mind its former sad and Having helped his father and mother to a
vehicle at the door, he was the last to leave the were, a tree torn up by the roots from a soil in family dwelling, leading by the hand an only which for two centuries it had been kindly sister, younger than himself, who was weeping nourished, and delivered to the sweeping waters as if her heart would break. Never did car- of a devastating flood, to be borne whither none riage contain four human beings more broken could tell, but with little hope of a second time in spirit and desolate of heart than that which anywhere striking root, or of uplifting its head rolled this day down the avenue, in front of again from the base and lowly earth, down to Carberry Grange
which it had been dragged, by untoward events, Outside the gateway the Rowans found the from its accustomed heaven. road filled with a crowd of their late dependents. There, were gathered to bid them a
CHAPTER V. sorrowful adieu-strong men and delicate
Reasoning at every step he treads, featured women, and numerous youths and
Man yet mistakes his way,
While meaner things, whom instinct leads, maidens beside, who, many a time, in days gone
Are rarely known to stray. -COWPER. by, had heard the kindly word, and known the With, almost, the slow pace of a funeral, the cheerful and ready bounty of the Rowans. On carriage, at the bidding of Mr. Rowan, was every face of the awaiting throng was an driven along the road until it reached the unspeakable sadness. Tears ran down many south boundary of the Carberry Estate. Its a cheek, and not a few choking sobs were late owner wished to bid it a lingering fare audible.
well, and to give a protracted and earnest gaze “God be wid you, Mr. Rowan, and be yer at objects which had been daily and hourly friend on this day of black sorra. Shure, an' present to his vision from his very childhood. it was you that used to be good to the poor He had a firm presentiment that never should and hungry. God bless you! And may the he revisit them. Hence he craved to so fix dear missus hav' the blessin' o' the Lord and upon his mind the details of the well beloved the comfortin' benedicshun o' the Holy Vargin, scene—that the vivid remembrance of them Mother o God, and the help of all the Saints should, far as possible, supply, in days to in heaven, day and night, with her. Shure if come, the want of their actual presence. it warn’t for her and the masther's goodniss This retarded progress of the carriage gave there isn't wan of uz i'd be here this day to see the crowd of sympathisers an opportunity of this heart breakin' sight. The best in the following it, of which they fully availed themcounty lavin' it. We'd a' been long ere this selves, still filling the air with their blessings dead and gone, killed with the hunger, and its and lamentations. Even when the bounds of takin' our long last sleep in Ballyrohan church- Carberry Grange were passed, and the driver yard we'd be, and not, as now, givin' a God put the vehicle to an increased speed, many speed to yees. And, Masther Garrett, howld were those who tried to keep up with it. up yer heart, Alannah! It's a long night, ye The one longest to continue in pursuit was a know, that has no golden dawn. This is a half-witted lad a well-known character of the woful time for ye, robbed o’yer birthright; district--who was befriended by every one, but there's a good time in store for ye yit, Surr, and had been, mostly so, by Mrs. Rowan. In and we don't despair o' seein' ye wan o' these his unreasoning fondness, with an eager and days back again in Carberry Grange. And, joyous face, he ever saluted her as “Lady Miss Katie, shure it ’ill be, all out, a dull and Mammy Rowan.” desolate place widout yer bonny face and fairy So long as the crowd moved, at a slow step to enliven it. The blessin' o' Heaven, march rate, “Addle-headed Andy” (such was flowin' over, be upon yees all, for ever and a his cognomen) walked on quietly in its midst, day, widout ceasin’. Shure it's thim yer lavin’ supposing we dare say, in his confused way, behind-it is—that has the worst cause for that he and all about him were going to a
What 'ill becum of uz and what ’ill we burial—for large and thronged “berrins," as is do widout yees? at all, at all. Left in the well known, are an institution in Ireland. hans o'thim that knows not uz an' our ways; At the quickened progress of the Rowans' and strangers in the land have, iv coorse, no carriage, however, he gave a start, the sluggish fellow feelin' for uz. Wirra sthru-we're current of his thought was strangely broken clane bet, lost, and done fur. Would to God in upon, and he rushed to the front to get it war our lot to go wid yees, and sarve yees some explanation of the unusual phenomenon; all the days of our lives, for nothin' else nor namely, that of a funeral moving at the rate of the love o’yees.”
a hunt. Such were some of the expressions which What he saw, caused the true state of the saluted the Rowans as, with sorrowful looks case to gleam upon his dim intelligence, and and overburdened hearts, they set out on their also reminded him of a something which, journey from the home of their fathers. As it hitherto forgotten, he was carrying hidden
between his buttoned-up coat and waistcoat. don't fur the life o’ye go off widout it. Shure This was
an oval piece of the finest and it ’ill make ye, in spite of all that man can do, greenest sward, cut by him that morning from Misthress, anyhow, of some part o' Carberry. the lawn of Carberry Grange.
Take it, Lady Mammy, take it, and then, tho' In some parts of the sister country there has they tell me yer goin away from Andy, and been a curious practice in vogue for generations, that he'll never see ye more, yet, for an’ever one which, however, has nearly died out. The ye sot eye on this, ye'll see some o' Carberry descendants of certain families, whose estates Grange still, and maybe, too, it 'ill make yo were confiscated in the ancient troubles of think o'me-yer own Addle-headed Andy.” Ireland, used to cut each year, and generally Mrs. Rowan was aware of the meaning of in secret, a green sod from some part of the the legendary act, the performance of which, ancestral demesne. It was done under a only dimly and confusedly comprehending, legendary belief that they thus retained a right Andy would force upon her, and she had no to the land a right to come into force some faith at all in the supposed inviolable right day-since they had in this way ever kept up which it would secure for her in the forfeited an unbroken personal connection with the con- family inheritance. She saw, however, that fiscated estate, and in fact had never, in their Andy had stumbled upon a real advantage, idea, been finally evicted from it.
which the possession of an Emerald sod from Andy had heard some of the neighbours talk Carberry Grange would secure for her. It would, over this custom, and saying that the Rowans, indeed, make her permanent owner of a porif they'd do right, should take a sod with them tion of the dear soil, and even when far away from Carberry Grange. The poor fellow- in person, would still make a part of Carberry though not clearly understanding the matter-Grange near and ever present to her. To the resolved within himself, that since it was a evident delight, therefore, of Andy, she thing which it was distinctly declared would eagerly, and with tears in her eyes, took his "sarve" his friends, he, " his own sel, would proffered gift, warmly thanking him the while, do the job”-would cut a sod of grass, such as and pressed his hand long and closely for a was spoken of, the nicest he could find, from final adieu. the well-known lawn, and would give it into Long did the fantastic fellow, laughing the hands of Lady Mammy Rowan. “Shure, gaily and dancing merrily-from the high its the least I can do fur the love o' her," he satisfaction he was in, from the success of his thought, as he set about the execution of his deed and the greeting he received—follow self-imposed task.
with his gaze the receding carriage. Long, Andy's surroundings in the crowd totally until, at last, it was lost to view from a bend effaced from his remembrance, as has been said, in the road. Then, a sense of blank desolathe emerald sod, and the purpose of his carrying tion coming over him, his grotesque laugh was it.
suddenly changed into an agony of weepingThe rapidly departing carriage, containing one that was often renewed in after days, when, his friends, flashed, however, upon his thoughts on going up as usual to Carberry Grange, to his early intention. Violently loosening his experience some act of kindness, he found coat, and seizing in his hand the object it had absent the one whose cheery voice and open concealed, and giving a wild cry, he darted hand had been wont to make him happy. after the vanishing Rowans, waving on high The destination of the Rowans was Clonmel, the gift he wished to convey to them.
the chief and very beautifully situated town of At first, surrounded by other pursuers, his county Tipperary. They proposed to themselves shouts and gesticulations were unheeded ; but to continue therefora season, until some matters, when he left his companions in the race behind pending, in connection with Carberry Grange and alone pressed on in front, still uttering should be brought to a settlement, and, also, his peculiar cries, he succeeded in gaining the until they should discover some eligible openobservation of those he solicited. Peter, the ing, and fix upon some permanent arrangement driver, was told to stop, the Rowan family, one for the future. The fifteen hundred pounds and all, wishful to give poor Andy that parting which remained over, and above, from the sale shake of the hand which he so earnestly seemed of the family estate, Mr. Rowan resolved until to covet,
then to put in a place of security; and, alas ! Lady Mammy Rowan—Lady Mammy the place chosen for this purpose was the TipRowan," ejaculated Andy, when he reached perary Bank. the carriage, and with great difficulty, from We have used the word · Alas,' at the mention exhausted breath, in consequence of his long of the bank, and all who know anything of the continued speed—“Lady Mammy Rowan- history of these times in the South of Ireland Look what I have fur ye, Maam, a piece will understand the reason. I've cut, me very sel, from Carberry Grange ;
(To be Continued.)