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time before his death, which took place when he was only thirty-six, he composed that celebrated requiem, which, by an extraordinary presentiment of his approaching dissolution, he considered as written for his own funeral.
One day, when he was plunged in a profound reverie, he hsard a carriage stop at his door. A stranger was announced, who requested to speak with him. A person was introduced, handsomely dressed, of dignified and impressive
“I have been commissioned, Sir, by a man of considerable importance, to call upon you.”—“Who is he ?” interrupted Mozart. “ He does not wish to be known.". “ Well, what does he want ?" “ He has just lost a person whom he tenderly loved, and whose memory will be eternally dear to him. He is desirous of annually commemorating this mournful event by a solemn service, for which he requests you to compose a requiem.”
Mozart was forcibly struck by this discourse, by the grave manner in which it was uttered, and by the air of mystery in which the whole was involved. He engaged to write the requiem. The stranger continued, “ Employ all your genius on this work; it is destined for a connoisseur.”—“ So much ihe better.”—“What time do you require ?”—“A month.”“Very well; in a month's time I shall return—what price do you set on your work ?"_“ A hundred ducats."*_-The stranger counted them on the table, and disappeared.
Mozart remained lost in thought for some time: he then suddenly called for pen, ink and paper, and, in spite of his wife's entreaties, began to write. This rage
composition continued several days; he wrote day and night, with an ardor which seemed continually to increase ; but his constitution, already in a state of great debility, was unable to support this enthusiasm ; one morning he fell senseless, and was obliged to suspend his work. Two or three days after, when his wife sought to divert his mind from the gloomy presages which occupied it, he said to her abruptly, · It is certain that I am writing this requiem for myself; it will serve for my funeral service. Nothing could remove this impression from his mind.
As he went on, he felt his strength diminish from day to day, and the score advancing slowly. The month which he had fixed being expired, the stranger again made his appearance. “I have found it impossible,” said Mozart, “ to keep my word.” “Do not give yourself any uneasiness," replied the stranger ; “what further time do you require ?"
_“ Another month : the work has interested me more than I expected, and I have extended it much beyond what I at first designed.”- -“ In that case, it is but just to increase the premium ; here are fifty ducats more. -“ Sir,” said Mozart, with increasing astonishment,“ who then are you “ That is nothing to the purpose ; in a month's time I shall return."
Mozart immediately called one of his servants, and or. dered him to follow this extraordinary personage, and find out who he was; but the man failed from want of skill, and returned without being able to trace him.
Poor Mozart was then persuaded that he was no ordinary being; that he had a connexion with the other world, and was sent to announce to him his approaching end. He ap. plied himself with the more ardor to his requiem, which he regarded as the most durable monument of his genius. While thus employed, he was seized with the most alarming fainting fits, but the work was at length completed before the expiration of the month. At the time appointed, the stranger returned, but Mozart was no more.
His career was as brilliant as it was short. He died before he had completed his thirty-sixth year; but in this short space of time he had acquired a name which will never perish, so long as feeling hearts are to be found
Death and burial of a child at sea.—SCRAP Book.
My boy refused his food, forgot to play,
Ah! many a sad and sleepless night I passed,
At length my boy seemed better, and I slept-
Oh ! let me weep!-what mother would not weep, To see her child committed to the deep?
No mournful flowers, by weeping fondness laid, Nor pink, nor rose, drooped, on his breast displayed, Nor half-blown daisy, in his little hand :Wide was the field around, but 'twas not land. Enamored death, with sweetly pensive grace, Was awful beauty to his silent face. No more his sad eye looked me into tears ! Closed was that eye beneath his pale, cold brow; And on his calm lips, which had lost their glow, But which, though pale, seemed half unclosed to speak, Loitered a smile, like moonlight on the snow.
I gazed upon him still not wild with fearsGone were my fears, and present was despair ! But, as I gazed, a little lock of hair, Stirred by the breeze, played, treinbling on his cheek • Oh, God! my heart !-I thought life still was there. But, to commit him to the watery grave, O’er which the winds, unwearied mourners, raveOne, who had come to take my
away, Upraised the body; thrice I både him stay; For still my wordless wo had much to say, And still I bent and gazed, and gazing wept.
At last my sisters, with humane constraint,
Character of Mr. James Watt.t Death is still busy in our high places:-and it is with great pain that we find ourselves called upon, so soon after the loss of Mr. Playfair, to record the decease of another of our illustrious countrymen,—and one to whom mankind has been still more largely indebted. Mr. James Watt, the great improver of the steam-engine, died on the 25th of April, at his seat of Heathfield, near Birmingham, in the 84th
of his age.
year This name fortunately needs no commemoration of ours; for he that bore it survived to see it crowned with undis. puted and unenvied honors; and many generations will probably pass away before it shall have gathered all its fame.” We have said that Mr. Watt was the great improver of the steam-engine ; but, in truth, as to all that is admirable in its structure, or vast in its utility, he should rather be described as its inventor. It was by his inventjons that its action was regulated so as to make it capable rf being applied to the finest and most delicate manufac* Pron. strow.
+ The above beautiful tribute to the memory of the great inventor of the steam-engine is abridged by McDiarmid from an article which appeared in the "Scotsman” newspaper,—and which was ascribed to Francis Jeffrey, Esą
tures, and its power so increased as to set weight and solidity at defiance.
By his admirable contrivances, and those of a kindred and lamented genius in America,* it has become a thing stupendous alike for its force and its flexibility,---for the prodigious power which it can exert, and the ease and precision and ductility with which it can be varied, distributed, and applied. The trunk of an elephant that can pick up a pin or rend an oak is as nothing to it. It can engrave a seal, and crush masses of obdurate metal before it,—draw out, without breaking, a thread as fine as gossamer, and lift up a ship of war like a bauble in the air. It can embroider muslin and fõrge anchors,-cut steel into ribands, and impel loaded vessels against the fury of the winds and waves.
It would be difficult to estimate the value of the benefits which these inventions have conferred upon the country. There is no branch of industry that has not been indebted to them; and in all the most material, they have not only widened most magnificently the field of its exertions, but multiplied a thousand fold the amount of its productions. It is our improved steam-engine that has fought the battles of Europe, and exalted and sustained, through the late tremendous contest, the political greatness of our land. It is the same great power which enables us to pay the interest of our debt, and to maintain the arduous struggle in which we are still engaged, with the skill and capital of countries less oppressed with taxation.
But these are poor and narrow views of its importance. It has increased indefinitely the mass of human comforts and enjoyments, and rendered cheap and accessible all over the world the materials of wealth and prosperity. It has armed the feeble hand of man, in short, with a power to which no limits can be assigned; completed the dominion of mind over the most refractory qualities of matter; and laid a sure foundation for all those future miracles of mechanic power which are to aid and reward the labors of after generations. It is to the genius of one man, too, that all this is mainly owing; and certainly no man ever before bestowed such a gift on his kind. The blessing is not only universal, but unbounded ; and the fabled inventors of the plough and the loom, who are deified by the erring gratitude of their rude contemporaries, conferred less important benefits on mankind than the inventor of our present steam-engine.
* Robert Fulton, Esq.