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THE DEAN OF SANTIAGO AND DON ILLAN OF TOLEDO. It was but a short hour before noon when the Dean of Santiago · alighted from his mule at the door of Don Illan, the celebrated magician of Toledo. The house, according to old tradition, stood on the brink of the perpendicular rock, which, now crowned with the Alcázar, rises to a fearful height over the Tagus.t A maid of Moorish blood led the Dean to a retired apartment, where Don Illan was reading. The natural politeness of a Castillian bad rather been improved than impaired by the studies of the Toledan sage, who exhibited nothing either in his dress or person that might induce a suspicion of his dealing with the mysterious powers of darkness. “ I heartily greet your Reverence," said Don Illan to the Dean, “and feel highly honoured by this visit. Whatever be the object of it, let me bey you will defer stating it till I have made you quite at home in this house. I hear my housekeeper making ready the noonday meal. That maid, Sir, will shew you the room which has been prepared for yon; and when you have brushed off the dust of the journey, you shall find a canonical capon steaming hot
upon the board." The dinner, which soon followed, was just what a pampered Spanish canon would wish it—abundant, nutritive, and delicate.
No, no," said Don Illan, when the soup and a bumper of Tinto had recruited the Dean's spirits, and he saw him making an attempt to break the object of his visit, “no business, please your Reverence, while at dinner. Let us enjoy our meal at present; and when we have discussed the Olla, the capon, and a bottle of Yepes, it will be time enough to turn to the cares of life.”
The ecclesiastic's full face had never beamed with more glee at the collation on Christmas eve, when, by the indulgence of the church, the fast is broken at sunset, instead of continuing through the night, than it did now under the influence of Don Julian's good humour and heart-cheering wine. Still it was evident that some vehement and ungovernable wish had taken possession of his mind, breaking out now and then in some hurried motion, some gulping up of a full glass of wine without stopping to relish the flavour, and fifty other symptoms of absence and impatience, which at such a distance from the cathedral could not be attributed to the afternoon bell. The time came at length of rising from table, and in spite of Don Julian's pressing request to have another bottle, the Dean, with a certain dignity of manner, led his good-natured host to the recess of an oriel window, looking upon the river.—“ Allow me, dear Don Julian,” he said, “ to open my heart to you; for even your hospitality must fail to make me completely happy till I have obtained the boon which I came to ask. I know that no man ever possessed greater power than you over the invisible agents of the universe. I die to become an adept in that wonderful science, and if you will receive me for your pupil
, there is nothing I should think of sufficient worth to repay your friendship."
* Nlan is, we believe, the same as Millan, the Spanish name for Æmilianus. † See an interesting view of this spot among Mr. Locker's beautiful Views Spain.
" Good Sir," replied Don Julian, “I should be extremely loth to offend you; but permit me to say, that in spite of the knowledge of causes and effects which I have acquired, all that my experience teaches me of the heart of man is not only vague and indistinct, but for the most part unfavourable. I only guess, I cannot read their thoughts, nor pry into the recesses of their minds. As for yourself, I am sure you are a rising man and likely to obtain the first dignities of the church. But whether, when you find yourself in places of high honour and patronage, you will remember the humble personage of whom you now ask a hazardous and important service, it is impossible for me to ascertain.”—“ Nay, nay,” exclaimed the Dean," but I know myself, if you do not, Don Julian.
Generosity and friendship (since you force me to speak in my own praise) have been the delight of my soul even from childhood. Doubt not, my dear friend, (for by that name I wish you would allow me to call you,) doubt not, from this moment, to command my services. Whatever interest I may possess, it will be my highest gratification to see it redound in favour of you and yours." “My hearty thanks for all, worthy Sir," said Don Julian." But let us now proceed to business: the sun is set, and, if you please, we will retire to my private study."
Lights being called for, Don Julian led the way to the lower part of the house ; and dismissing the Moorish maid near a small door, of which he held the key in his hand, desired her to get two partridges for supper, but not to dress them till he should order it: then unlocking the door, he began to descend by a winding staircase. The Dean followed with a certain degree of trepidation, which the length of the stairs greatly tended to increase ; for, to all appearance, they reached below the bed of the Tagus. At this depth a comfortable neat room was found, the walls completely covered with shelves, where Don Julian kept his works on Magic; globes, planispheres, and strange drawings, occupied the top of the bookcases. Fresh air was admitted, though it would be difficult to guess by what means, since the sound of gliding water, such as is heard at the lower part of a ship when sail. ing with a gentle breeze, indicated but a thin partition between the subterraneous cabinet and the river.-“ Here, then," said Don Julian, offering a chair to the Dean, and drawing another for himself towards a small round table, "we have only to choose among the elementary works of the science for which you long. Suppose we begin to read this small volume.”
The volume was laid on the table, and opened at the first page, containing circles, concentric and eccentric, triangles with unintelligible characters, and the well-known signs of the planets.-" This,” said Don Julian, " is the alphabet of the whole science. Hermes, called Trismegistus The sound of a small bell within the chamber made the Dean almost leap out of his chair. “ Be not alarmed,” said Don Julian; "it is the bell by which my servants let me know that they want to speak to me.” Saying thus, he pulled a silk string, and soon after a servant appeared with a packet of letters. It was addressed to the Dean. A courier had closely followed him on the road, and was that moment arrived at Toledo. “ Good Heavens !” ex. claimed the Dean, having read the contents of the letters; “my great
uncle, the Archbishop of Santiago, is dangerously ill. This is, however, what the secretary says, from his Lordship’s dictation. But here is another letter from the Archdeacon of the diocese, who assures me that the old man was not expected to live. I can hardly repeat what he adds—Poor dear uncle! may Heaven lengthen his days! The Chapter seem to have turned their eyes towards me, and-pugh! it cannot be—but the Electors, according to the Archdeacon, are quite decided in my favour.”—“ Well," said Don Julian,“ all I regret is the interruption of our studies; but I doubt not that you will soon wear the mitre. In the mean time I would advise you to pretend that illness does not allow you to return directly. A few days will surely give a decided turn to the whole affair; and, at all events, your absence, in case of an election, will be construed into modesty. Write, therefore, your despatches, my dear Sir, and we will prosecute our studies at another time.”
Two days bad elapsed since the arrival of the messenger, when the Verger of the church of Santiago, attended by servants in splendid liveries, alighted at Don Julian's door with letters for the Dean. The old prelate was dead, and his nephew had been elected to the see, by the unanimous vote of the Chapter. The elected dignitary seemed overcome by contending feelings; but, having wiped away some decent tears, he assumed an air of gravity, which almost touched on superciliousness. Don Julian addressed his congratulations, and was the first to kiss the new Archbishop's hand. "I hope,” he added, "I may also congratulate my son, the young man who is now at the University of Paris; for I flatter myself your Lordship will give him the Deanery, which is vacant by your promotion.” My worthy friend Don Julian,” replied the Archbishop elect,“ my obligations to you I can never sufficiently repay. You have heard my character ; I hold a friend as another self. But why would you take the lad away from his studies? An Archbishop of Santiago cannot want preferment at any time. Follow me to my diocese: I will not for all the mitres in Chistendom forego the benefit of your instruction. The deanery, to tell you the truth, must be given to my uncle, my father's own brother, who has bad but a small living for many years ; he is much liked in Santiago, and I should lose my character if, to place such a young man as your son at the head of the Chapter, I neglected an exemplary priest, so nearly related to me.”—“Just as you please, my Lord," said Don Julian; and began to prepare for the journey.
The acclamations which greeted the new Archbishop on his arrival at the capital of Galicia were, not long after, succeeded by an universal regret at his translation to the see of the recently conquered town of Seville. “I will not leave you behind,” said the Archbishop to Don Julian, who, with more timidity than he shewed at Toledo, approached to kiss the sacred ring in the Archbishop's right hand*, and to offer his humble congratulations, " but do not fret about your son.
He is too young. I have my mother's relations to provide for; but Seville
Catholic bishops wear a consecrated ring, which is kissed, with a bending of the knee, by those who approach them.
is a rich see; the blessed King Ferdinand, who rescued it from the Moors, endowed its church so as to make it rival the first cathedrals in Christendom. Do but follow me, and all will be well in the end." Don Julian bowed with a suppressed sigh, and was soon after on the banks of the Guadalquivir, in the suite of the new Archbishop.
Scarcely had Don Julian's pupil been at Seville one year, when his far extended fame moved the Pope to send him a cardinal's hat, desiring his presence at the Court of Rome. The crowd of visitors who came to congratulate the prelate, kept Don Julian away for many days. He at length obtained a private audience, and, with tears in his eyes, entreated his Eminence not to oblige him to quit Spain. “ I am growing old, my Lord,” he said: "I quitted my house at Toledo only for your sake, and in hopes of raising my son to some place of honour and emolument in the church; I even gave up my favourite studies, except as far as they were of service to your Eminence. My son, more of that, if you please, Don Julian,” interrupted the Cardinal. “ Follow me, you must; who can tell what may happen at Rome ? The Pope is old, you know. But do not tease me about preferment. A public man has duties of a description which those in the lower ranks of life cannot either weigh or comprehend. I confess I am under obligations to you, and feel quite disposed to reward your services; yet I must not have my creditors knocking every day at my door : you understand, Don Julian. In a week we set out for Rome.”
With such a strong tide of good fortune as had hitherto buoyed up Don Julian's pupil, the reader cannot be surprised to find him, in a short time, wearing the papal crown. He was now arrived at the highest place of honour on earth; but in the bustle of the election and subsequent coronation, the man to whose wonderful science he owed this rapid ascent, had completely slipped off his memory. Fatigued with the exhibition of himself through the streets of Rome, which he had been obliged to make in a solemn procession, the new Pope sat alone in one of the chambers of the Vatican. It was early in the night. By the light of two wax tapers which scarcely illuminated the farthest end of the grand saloon, his Holiness was enjoying that reverie of mixed pain and pleasure which follows the complete attainment of ardent wishes, when Don Julian advanced in visible perturbation, conscious of the intrusion on which he ventured. “Holy Father !” exclaimed the old man, and cast himself at his pupil's feet: “ Holy Father, in pity to these grey hairs do not consign an old servantmight I not say an old friend?-to utter neglect and forgetfulness. My -" " By Saint Peter!” ejaculated his Holiness, rising from the
your insolence shall be checked- You my friend! A magician the friend of Heaven's vicegerent! - Away, wretched man! When I pretended to learn of thee, it was only to sound the abyss of cringe into which thou hadst plunged; I did it with a view of bringing thee to condign punishment. Yet, in compassion to thy age, I will not make an example of thee, provided thou avoidest my eyes. Hide thy crime and shame where thou canst. This moment thou must quit the palace, or the next closes the gates of the Inquisition upon thee.”
Trembling, and his wrinkled face bedewed with tears, Don Julian begged to be allowed but one word more. “I am very poor, Holy
Father," said he : "trusting in your patronage I relinquished my all, and have not. left wherewith to pay my journey."_" Away, I say," answered the Pope; “if my excessive bounty has made you neglect your patrimony, I will no farther encourage your waste and improvidence. Poverty is but a slight punishment for your crimes.”_" But, Father,” rejoined Don Julian, “my wants are instant; I am hungry : give me but a trifle to procure a supper to-night. To-morrow I shall beg my way out of Rome.”- “ Heaven forbid,” said the Pope," that should be guilty of feeding the ally of the Prince of Darkness. Away, away from my presence, or I instantly call for the guard.”_" Well then,” replied Don Julian, rising from the ground, and looking on the Pope with a boldness which began to throw his Holiness into a paroxysm of rage, “ if I am to starve at Rome, I had better return to the supper which I ordered at Toledo.” Thus saying, he rang a gold bell which stood on a table next the Pope.
The door opened without delay, and the Moorish servant came in. The Pope looked round, and found himself in the subterraneous study under the Tagus. “ Desire the cook,” said Don Julian to the maid, " to put but one partridge to roast; for I will not throw away the other on the Dean of Santiago.”
The supernatural machinery employed in the preceding tale, or the supposition that by some means unknown the human mind may be subjected to a complete delusion, during which it exists in a world of her own creation, perfectly independent of time and space, has a strong hold on what might be called man's natural prejudices. Far from there being any thing revolting or palpably absurd in such an admission, the obscurity itself of the nature of time and space, and the phenomena of the dreaming and delirious mind, are ready to give it a colouring of truth. The success, indeed, of the tales which have been composed upon that basis, proves how readily men of all ages and nations have acknowledged, what we might call, its poétical truth. The hint followed by Don Juan Manuel, in the Deun of Santiago, is found in the Turkish Tales, from which Addison took the story of Chahabeddin, in No. 94 of the Spectator. It is very probable that the Spanish author received it through the Arabs, his countrymen, and was the first who adapted it to European customs. The imitations of the Spanish tale are numerous. The learned antiquary Mr. Douce has, with his usual kindness, given us a list of seven works, where it is found in a variety of dress and costume. We subjoin their titles in a note.*
Scot's “ Mensa Philosophica," a very rare book. Blanchet's “ Apologues." In verse, from Blanchet, by Mr. Andrieux, in L'Esprit des Journaux, for 1799. In English prose, io Vol. VII. of Anderson's “ Bee,' probably from the French, by Mr. Johnes. Tales from the French, 2 vols. 12mo. 1786. Boyer's “ Wise and Ingenious Companion.” Twine's “ Schoolmaster." 1576.