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same contemplative mood, and calm temperament, that had sat so gracefully on him in his earlier phasis. He indulges in that error, so common among public men, of weighing private virtue or vice lightly, in comparison with the superior importance to mankind of his public transactions; he philosophizes away to his conscience the taint that has come upon some of the best arts of his original character; and pleases himself with feeling that the strength and generosity of his nature have not at all events been impaired.
We are prepared, in short, to find Adriana van Merestyn replaced in the second part of the romance by a heroine of a far different stamp. The following lines come as a sort of envoy to the first drama
-Rest thee a space : or if thou lovest to hear
With this she whiled away the lonely evening hour.'-vol.i. p. 26.1. These beautiful lines introduce a separate lyrical poem, which, if the author had written nothing else, would, as it seems to us, have been sufficient to fix an elegant reputation. We must content ourselves with broken fragments froin the lay of Elena.' A bark is launched on Como's lake, · Her mother sixteen years hefore A maiden sits abaft;
The burthen of the baby bore : A little sail is loosed to take
And though brought forth in joy, the day The night-wind's breath, and wast So joyful, she was wont to say, The maiden and her bark away,
In taking count of after years, Across the lake and up the bay.
Gave birth to fewer hopes than fears. And what doth there that lady fair
For seldom smiled Upon the wavelet tossed ?
The serious child, Before her shines the evening star, And as she passed from childhood grew Behind her in the woods afar
More far-between those smiles, and few The castle lights are lost.
More sad and wild. What doth she there? The evening And though she loved her father well, air
And though she loved her mother more, Lifts her locks, and her neck is bare; Upon her heart a sorrow fell, And the dews, that now are falling fast, And sapped it to the core. May work her harm, or a rougher blast And in her father's castle nought
May come from yonder cloud ; She ever found of what she sought, And that her bark might scarce sustain, And all her pleasure was to roam So slightly built ;-then why remain, Amongst the mountains far from home, And would she be allowed
And through thick woods, and whereTo brave the wind and sit in the dew
soe'er At night on the lake, if her mother knew? She saddest felt, to sojourn there;
And oh! she loved to linger afloat On the lonely lake in the little boat!
• It was not for the forms,-though fair, Though grand they were beyond com
By day or night
Her home, and far
Of sun or star.
Free in a world without an end,
And heart to apprehend. It was to leave the earth behiud, And rove with liberated mind, As fancy led, or choice or chance, Through wildered regions of romance.
A sure prognostic that the day
• Much dreaming these, yet was she
boons, Save by the festal lights of gay saloons ; Beauty in plain attire her heart could
grew not wise,
sighs Purchased, and tears and heart-break
have been hers, And taught her nothing: 'where she
erred she errs.
First love the world is wont to call
• Be it avowed, when all is said, She trod the path the many.
tread. She loved too soon in life; her dawn Was bright with sunbeams, whence is
How fared that love? the tale so old,
Its changes, seasons, you can tell, – But she that loved them-she is far,
Far from her native shore.
A foreign sky above her,
below And marble floor and gilded dome, Gladdened by Summer's equal glow. Where festive myriads nightly meet, What next? a change is slowly seen,
Quick echoes of her steps repeat. And deepeneth day by day
And she is gay at times, and light The darker, soberer, sadder green
From her makes many faces bright ; Prevenient to decay.
And circling flatterers hem her in
Assiduous each a word to win, What followed was not good to do, And smooth as mirrors each the while Nor is it good to tell;
Reflects and multiplies her smile. The anguish of that worst adieu
But fitful were those smiles, nor long Which
with love and honour too, She cast them to that courtly throng; Abides not so far well.
And should the sound of music fall The human heart cannot sustain
Upon her ear in that high hall, Prolonged, unalterable pain,
The smile was gone, the eye tliat shone And not till reason cease to reign So brightly would be dimmed anon, Will nature want some moments brief And objectless would then appear, Of other moods to mix with grief : As stretched to check the starting tear. Such and so hard to be destroyed
The chords within responsive rung, That vigour which abhors a void; For music spoke her native tongue. And in the midst of all distress, Such nature's need for happiness! . And then the gay and glittering crowd And when she rallied thus, inore high Is heard not, laugh they e'er so loud ; Her spirits ran, she knew not why, Nor then is seen the simpering row Than was their wont in times than these Of flatterers, bend they e'er so low ; Less troubled, with a heart at ease. For there before her, where she stands, So meet extremes; so joy's rebound The mountains rise, the lake expands; Is highest from the hollowest ground; Around the terraced summit twines So vessels with the storm that strive The leafy coronal of vines; Pitch higher as they deeplier drive. Within the watery mirror deep
Nature's calm converse lies asleep; - Well had it been if she had curbed Above she sees the sky's blue glow, These transports of a mind disturbed ; The forest's varied green below, For grief is then the worst of foes
And far its vaulted vistas through When, all intolerant of repose,
A distant grove of darker hue, It sends the heart abroad to seek
Where mounting high from clumps of oak From weak recoils exemptions weak; Curls lightly up the thin gray smoke; Afier false gods to go astray,
And o'er the boughs that over-bower Deck altars vile with garlands gay, The crag, a castle's turrets towerAnd place a painted form of stone
An eastern casement mantled o'er On Passion's abdicated throne.
With ivy flashes back the gleam
Of sun-rise, -it was there of yore On Como's lake the evening star She sat to see that sun-rise pour Is trembling as before;
Its splendour round-she sees no more, An azure flood, a golden bar,
For tears disperse the dream.' There as they were before they are,
- vol. i. p. 266-286. We have, limited by our allotted space, been obliged to omit many of the finest stanzas of this lyric. It will be more popular, we suspect, with the mass of readers, than the noblest pages of the two dramas which it links together; yet, if we be not mistaken, it is introduced chiefly to show that the author, if he had chosen,
might have employed, with brilliant success, in these dramas, a class of ornaments which he has, on principle, disdained to intermingle in their dialogue. His masculine ambition woos seriously the severer graces. We have quoted, therefore, from the lay of Elena' thus largely, on purpose to arrest the attention of those who have been so long accustomed to admire poetry of one particular school in its original masters admirable) as to have lost, in some measure, the power of believing that there may be poetry equally fervid, and powerful, where the execution, as well as the sentiment, is more chastened. But to return to the story before us.
This beautiful Italian lady has of late been domiciled' with the Duke of Bourbon, father-in-law to the exiled Earl of Flanders, and uncle to the boy King of France. She has fallen into the hands of Artevelde, and conceived for him a passion-far stronger than the reader of her • lay' could have dreamt she would still be capable of; she loves the regent for himself--and he loves her also; but the now hopelessly disturbed temper of his mind is with bold and happy art made to break out even at the moment when she has first told him her love.
The lady has accompanied the regent's camp to the frontier; his application to the court of England has just been rejected; the Duke of Bourbon has induced his nephew of France to muster the strength of his kingdom in the cause of the Earl of Flanders : -(the whole portraiture, by the way, of this stripling monarch, is worthy of Scott himself—it has even a Shakspearian airinesss of touch about it;)—a French envoy has arrived with a secret message from Bourbon, intimating that, if Artevelde will restore Elena, he may yet induce the giddy king to suspend his march, and acknowledge the regent as a lawful sovereign. Philip has allowed the envoy, Sir Fleureant de Heurlée, freedom to deliver letters to the lady herself, and referred the decision of her fate wholly to her own choice. Elena refuses to depart. In going the rounds of his camp at midnight, Artevelde perceives light in her pavilion-he enters, and every one foresees the issue. This is the close of the dialogue. We need not invite special attention to what we quote : here all real lovers of poetry will be as one. Artevelde. The tomb received her charms
In their perfection, with no trace of time
had seen her
I wish I had, my lord ;
VOL. LI. NO. CII.
For I can gaze on beauty all day long,
And think the all-day-long is but too short.
She will not need put on another shape
How I have hoped to fill it may I tell?
Is such my doom? Nay, speak it, if it be.
The place of her you lost, being so fair
And perfect as you give her out.
A perfect woman is not as a coin,