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Here, throughout the siege, had been Proclaim'd the desperate conflict o'er
The Christians' chiefest magazine; On that too long afflicted shore:
To these a late form'd train now led, Up to the sky like rockets go
Minotti's last and stern resource

All that mingled there below:
Against the foe’s o'erwhelming force. Many a tall and goodly man,

Scorch'd and shrivell’d to a span, The foe came on, and few remain

When he fell to earth again To strive, and those must strive in vain :

Like a cinder strew'd the plain:

Down the ashes shower like rain ;
For lack of further lives, to slake
The thirst of vengeance now awake,

Some fell in the gulf, which received the With barbarous blows they gash the dead,

sprinkles And lop the already lifeless head,

With a thousand circling wrinkles;

Some fell on the shore, but far away,
And fell the statues from their niche,

Scatter'd o'er the isthmus lay;
And spoil the shrines of offerings rich,
And from each other's rude hands wrest

Christian or Moslem, which be they?

Let their mothers see and say!
The silver vessels saints had bless'd.
To the high altar on they go;

When in cradled rest they lay,
Oh, but it made a glorious show!

And each nursing mother smiled On its table still behold

On the sweet sleep of her child,

Little deem'd she such a day The cup of consecrated gold;

Would rend those tender limbs away. Massy and deep, a glittering prize,

Not the matrons that them bore
Brightly it sparkles to plunderers' eyes :

Could discern their offspring more ;
That morn it held the holy wine,
Converted by Christ to his blood so divine, More of human form or face

That one moment left no trace
Which his worshippers drank at the break

of day,

Save a scatter'd scalp or bone: To shrive their souls ere they join'd in the And down came blazing rafters, strown

Around, and many a falling stone,

fray. Still a few drops within it lay;

Deeply dinted in the clay,

All blacken'd there and reeking lay.
And round the sacred table glow
Twelve lofty lamps, in splendid row,

All the living things that heard
From the purest metal cast;

That deadly earth-shock disappeard :

The wild birds flew; the wild dogs fled, A spoil- the richest, and the last.

And howling left the unburied dead;

The camels from their keepers broke; So near they came, the nearest stretch'd The distant steer forsook the yokeTo grasp the spoil he almost reach'd, The nearer steed plunged o'er the plain, When old Minotti's hand

And burst his girth, and tore his rein; Touch'd with the torch the train

The bull-frog's note, from out the marsh, Tis fired!

Deep-mouth'd arose, and doubly harsh ;
Spire, vaults, the shrine, the spoil, the slain, The wolves yell’d on the cavernd hill,
The turban'd victors, the Christian band, Where echo roll'd in thunder still;
All that of living or dead remain,

The jackal's troop, in gather'd cry,
Hurlid on high with the shiver'd fane, Bay'd from afar complainingly,
In one wild roar expired!

With a mix'd and mournful sound,
The shatter'd town the walls thrown Like crying babe, and beaten hound:


With sudden wing, and ruffled breast, The waves a moment backward bent- The eagle left his rocky nest, The hills that shake, although unrent, And mounted nearer to the sun, As if an earthquake pass'd

The clouds beneath him seem'd so dun; The thousand shapeless things all driven Their smoke assail'd his startled beak, In cloud and flame athwart the heaven, And made him higher soar and shriek By that tremendous blast

Thus was Corinth lost and won !






the facts on which the story is founded. The SCROPE BERDMORE DAVIES, ESQ. name of Azo is substituted for Nicholas, as THE FOLLOWING POEM 18 INSCRIBED BY ONE more metrical.

“Under the reign of Nicholas III. Ferrara

was polluted with a domestic tragedy. By January 22,

the testimony of an attendant, and his own

observation, the Marquis of Este discovered ADVERTISEMENT.

the incestuous loves of his wife Parisina, The following poem is grounded on a and Hugo his bastard -son, a beautiful and circumstance mentioned in Gibbon's “Anti- valiant youth. They were beheaded in the quities of the House of Brunswick."-I am castle by the sentence of a father and husaware that in modern times the delicacy band, who published his shame, and suror fastidiousness of the reader may deem vived their execution. He was unfortunate, such subjects unfit for the purposes of poetry. if they were guilty; if they were innocent, The Greek dramatists, and some of the best he was still more unfortunate; nor is there of our old English writers, were of a differ- any possible situation in which I can sinent opinion: as Alfieri and Schiller have cerely approve the last act of the justice of also been, more recently, upon the con- a parent.”Gibbon's Miscellaneous Works, tinent. The following extract will explain vol. III. p. 470.

It is the hour when from the boughs And heedless as the dead are they The nightingale's high note is heard ; Of aught around, above, beneath ; It is the hour when lovers' vows

As if all else had pass'd away,
Seem sweet in every whisper'd word; They only for each other breathe ;
And gentle winds, and waters near, Their very sighs are full of joy
Make music to the lonely ear.

So deep, that did it not decay,
Each flower the dews have lightly wet, That happy madness would destroy
And in the sky the stars are met,

The hearts which feel its fiery sway:
And on the wave is deeper blue,

Of guilt, or peril, do they deem And on the leaf a browner hue,

In that tumultuous tender dream? And in the heaven that clear-obscure, Who that have felt that passion's power, So softly dark, and darkly pure,

Or paused, or fear'd in such an hour ? Which follows the decline of day,

Or thought how brief such monents last? As twilight melts beneath the moon away. But yet, they are already past!

Alas! we must awake before

We know such vision comes no more. But it is not to list to the waterfall That Parisina leaves her hall, And it is not to gaze on the heavenly light With many a lingering look they leave That the lady walks in the shadow of night; The spot of guilty gladness past ; And if she sits in Este's bower,

And though they hope, and vow, they grieve, Tis not for the sake of its full-blown flower-As if that parting were the last. She listens—but not for the nightingale- The frequent sigh-the long embraceThough her ear expects as soft a tale. The lip that there would cling for ever, There glides a step through the foliage While gleams on Parisina's face


The Heaven she fears will not forgive her, And her cheek grows pale—and her heart As if each calmly conscious star

beats quick, Beheld her frailty from afarThere whispers a voice through the rustling The frequent sigh, the long embrace,


Yet binds them to their trysting-place. A moment more—and they shall meet- But it must come, and they must part 'Tis past -- her lover's at her feet.

In fearful heaviness of heart,

With all the deep and shuddering chill And what unto them is the world beside, which follows fast the deeds of ill. With all its change of time and tide? Its living things--its earth and sky

And Hugo is gone to his lonely bed, Are nothing to their mind and eye. To covet there another's bride;

But she must lay her conscious head The guilt-the shane-the doom to her:
A husband's trusting heart beside. Concealment is no more—they speak
But fever'd in her sleep she seems,

All circumstance which may compel
And red her cheek with troubled dreams, Full credence to the tale they tell :
And mutters she in her unrest

And Azo's tortured heart and ear
A name she dare not breathe by day, Have nothing more to feel or hear.
And clasps her Lord unto the breast
Which pants for one away:
And he to that embrace awakes,

He was not one who brook'd delay :

Within the chamber of his state,
And, happy in the thought, mistakes

The chief of Este's ancient sway
That dreaming sigh, and warm caress,
For such as he was wont to bless;

Upon his throne of judgment sate;
And could in very fondness weep

His nobles and his guards are there,O'er her who loves him even in sleep.

Before him is the sinful pair;
Both young, -and one how passing fair!

With swordless belt, and fetter'd hand, He clasp'd her sleeping to his heart, Oh, Christ! that thus a son should stand And listen’d to each broken word :

Before a father's face! He hears - Why doth Prince Azo start, Yet thus must Hugo meet his sire, As if the Archangel's voice he heard ? And hear the sentence of his ire, And well he may-a deeper doom The tale of his disgrace! Could scarcely thunder o'er his tomb, And yet he seems not overcome, When he shall wake to sleep no more, Although, as yet, his voice be dumb. And stand the eternal throne before. And well he may, his earthly peace

And still, and pale, and silently Upon that sound is doom'd to cease.

Did Parisina wait her doom ; That sleeping whisper of a name

How changed since last her speaking eye Bespeaks her guilt and Azo's shame. And whose that name? that o'er his pillow Where high-born men were proud to wait –

Glanced gladness round the glittering room, Sounds fearful as the breaking billow, Which rolls the plank upon the shore,

Where Beauty watch'd to imitate And dashes on the pointed rock

Her gentle voice -- her lovely mienThe wretch who sinks to rise no more,

And gather from her air and gait

The graces of its queen: So came upon his soul the shock. And whose that name? 'tis Hugo's,—his-Then,– had her eye in sorrow wept,

A thousand warriors forth had leapt, In sooth he had not deemd of this!

A thousand swords had sheathless shone, Tis Hugo's, -he, the child of one He loved-his own all-evil son

And made her quarrel all their own.

Now,--what is she? and what are they? The offspring of his wayward youth,

Can she command, or these obey ? When he betray'd Bianca's truth,

All silent and unheeding now, The maid whose folly could confide

With downcast eyes and knitting brow, In him who made her not his bride,

And folded arins, and freezing air,

And lips that scarce their scorn forbear, He pluck'd his poniard in its sheath, Her knights and dames, her court-is there: But sheathed it ere the point was bare- And he, the chosen one, whose lance Howe'er unworthy now to breathe, Had yet been couch'd before her glance, He could not slay a thing so fair

Who were his arm a moment free At least, not smiling-sleeping there- Had died or gain'd her liberty ; Nay, more: he did not wake her then, The minion of his father's bride, But gazed upon her with a glance He, too, is fetter'd by her side; Which, had she roused her from her trance, Nor sees her swoln and full eye swim Had frozen her sense to sleep again Less for her own despair than him : And o'er his brow the burning lamp

Those lids -o'er which the violet vein Gleam'd on the dew-drops big and damp. Wandering, leaves a tender stain, She spake no more-but still she slumber'd Shining through the smoothest white While, in his thought, her days are That e’er did softest kiss invite


Now seem'd with hot and livid glow
To press, not shade, the orbs below;

Which glance so heavily, and fill,
And with the morn he sought, and found, As tear on tear grows gathering still.
In many a tale from those around,
The proof of all he fear'd to know,
Their present guilt, his future woe; And he for her had also wept,
The long-conniving damsels scek

But for the eyes that on him gazed : To save themselves, and would transfer His sorrow, if he felt it, slept;

But wrong

Stern and erect his brow was raised. But she is in the grave, where he,
Whate'er the grief his soul avowd, Her son, thy rival, soon shall be.
He would not shrink before the crowd; Her broken heart-my sever'd head
But yet he dared not look on her: Shall witness for thee from the dead
Remembrance of the hours that were - How trusty and how tender were
His guilt- his love – his present state- Thy youthful love-paternal care.
His father's wrath-all good men's hate-T'is true, that I have done thee wrong--
His earthly, his eternal fate –


wrong - this deem'd thy And hers, -oh, hers! -- he dared not throw

One look upon that deathlike brow! The other victim of thy pride,
Else had his rising heart betray'd Thou knowst for me was destined long.
Remorse for all the wreck it made. Thou sawst, and covetedst her charms -

And with thy very crime - my birth,

Thou tauntedst me-as little worth;
And Azo spake:-“But yesterday A match ignoble for her arms,
I gloried in a wise and son ;

Because, forsooth, I could not claim
That dream this morning pass'd away ; The lawful heirship of thy name,
Ere day declines, I shall have none. Nor sit on Este's lineal throne:
My life must linger on alone;

Yet, were a few short summers mine,
Well, let that pass,—there breathes not one My name should more than Este's shine
Who would not do as I have done :

With honours all my own. Those ties are broken – not by me; I had a sword - and have a breast Let that too pass :- the doom's prepared! That should have won as haught a crest Hugo, the priest awaits on thee,

As ever waved along the line
And then – thy crime's reward !

of all these sovereign sires of thine.
Away! address thy prayers to Heaven, Not always knightly spurs are worn
Before its evening-stars are met -
Learn if thou there canst be forgiven;

The brightest by the better born;

And mine have lanced my courser's flank Its mercy may absolve thee yet.

Before proud chiefs of princely rank,
But here, upon the earth beneath, When charging to the cheering cry
There is no spot where thou and I Of “Este and of Victory!”
Together, for an hour, could breathe :

I will not plead the cause of crime,
Farewell! I will not see thee die -

Nor sue thee to redeem from time But thou, frail thing! shalt view his head

A few brief hours or days that must Away! I cannot speak the rest :

At length roll o'er my reckless dust;
Go! woman of the wanton breast;

Such maddening moments as my past,
Not I, but thou his blood dost shed:
Go! if that sight thou canst outlive,

They could not, and they did not, last –

Albeit my birth and name be base, And joy thee in the life I give.”

And thy nobility of race

Disdaind to deck a thing like me And here stern Azo hid his face -- Yet in my lineaments they trace For on his brow the swelling vein

Some features of my father's face, Throbb’d as if back upon his brain

And in my spirit-all of thec. The hot blood ebb’d and flow'd again ;

From thee--this tamelessness of heartAnd therefore bow'd he for a space

From thee nay, wherefore dost thou And pass'd his shaking hand along

start? – His eye, to veil it from the throng;

From thee in all their vigour came While Hugo raised his chained hands,

My arm of strength, my soul of flame And for a brief delay demands

Thou didst not give me life alone, His father's ear: the silent sire

But all that made me more thine own. Forbids not what his words require. See wbat thy guilty love hath done!

Repaid thee with too like a son!

I am no bastard in my soul,
“It is not that I dread the death For that, like thine, abhorr’d controul :
For thou hast seen me by thy side And for my breath, that hasty boon
All redly through the battle ride, Thou gavest and wilt resume so soon,
And that not once a useless brand

I valued it no more than thou,
Thy slaves have wrested from my hand, When rose thy casque above thy brow,
Hath shed more blood in cause of thine And we, all side by side, have striven,
Than e'er can stain the axe of mine: And o'er the dead our coursers driven:
Thou gavest, and mayst resume my breath, The past is nothing- and at last
A gift for which I thank thee not; The future can but be the past;
Nor are my mother's wrongs forgot,

Yet would I that I then had died :
Her slighted love and ruin'd name, For though thou work’dst my mother's ill,
Her offspring's heritage of shame; And made thy own my destined bride,

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I feel thou art my father still;

She had forgotten :-- did she breathe ? And, harsh as sounds thy hard decree, Could this be still the earth beneath ? Tis not anjust, although from thee. The sky-above, and men around ; Begot in sin, to die in shame,

Or were they fiends who now so frown'd My life begun and ends the same: On one, before whose eyes each eye As err'd the sire, so err'd the son,

Till then had smiled in sympathy ? And thou must punish both in one.

All was confused and undefined, My crime seems worst to human view, To her all-jarr'd and wandering mind; But God must judge between us two!” A chaos of wild hopes and fears :

And now in laughter, now in tears,

But madly still in each extreme, He ceased -and stood with folded arms, She strove with that convulsive dream; On which the circling fetters sounded; For so it seem'd on her to break: And not an ear but felt as wounded, Oh! vainly must she strive to wake! Of all the chiefs that there were rank’d, When those dull chains in meeting clank'd : Till Parisina's fatal charms

The Convent-bells are ringing, Again attracted every eye

But mournfully and slow, Would she thus hear him doom'd to die !

In the gray square turret swinging, She stood, I said, all pale and still,

With a deep sound, to and fro. The living cause of Hugo's ill:

Heavily to the heart they go! Her eyes unmoved, but full and wide,

Hark! the hymn is singingNot once had turn’d to either side - The song for the dead below, Nor once did those sweet eyelids close,

Or the living who shortly shall be so ! Or shade the glance o'er which they rose,

For a departing being's soul But round their orbs of deepest blue

The death-hymn peals and the hollow The circling white dilated grew

bells knoll: And there with glassy gaze she stood

He is near his mortal goal; As ice were in her curdled blood;

Kneeling at the Friar's knee; Bat every now and then a tear

Sad to hear ---and piteous to seeSo large and slowly gather'd slid

Kneeling on the bare cold ground, From the long dark fringe of that fair lid, With the block before and the guard aroundIt was a thing to see, not hear!

And the headsman with his bare arm And those who saw, it did surprise,

ready, Such drops could fall from human eyes.

That the blow may be both swift and steady, To speak she thought-the imperfeci note Feels if the axe be sharp and true Was choked within her swelling throat,

Since he set its edge anew : Yet seem'd in that low hollow groan

While the crowd in a speechless circle Her whole heart gushing in the tone.

gather It ceased - again she thought to speak,

To see the Son fall by the doom of the

Then burst her voice in one long shriek,
And to the earth she fell like stone
Or statue from its base o'erthrown,

It is a lovely hour as yet
More like a thing that ne'er had life, -- Before the summer-sun shall set,
A monument of Azo's wife,

Which rose upon that heavy day.
Than her, that living guilty thing, And mock'd it with his steadiest ray;
Whose every passion was a sting,

And his evening-beains are slied
Which urged to guilt, but could not bear Full on Hugo's fated head,
That guilt's detection and despair.

As his last confession pouring
But yet she lived - and all too soon To the monk, his doom deploring
Recover'd from that death-like swoon- In penitential holiness,
But scarce to reason- every sense

He bends to hear his accents bless
Had been o'erstrung by pangs intense ;

With absolution such as may And each frail fibre of her brain

Wipe our mortal stains away. (As bow-strings, when relax'd by rain, That high sun on his head did glisten The erring arrow launch aside)

As he there did bow and listen -
Sent forth her thoughts all wild and wide- And the rings of chesnut hair
The past a blank, the future black, Curled half down his neck so bare;
With glimpses of a dreary track,

But brighter still the beam was thrown
Like lightning on the desert-path, Upon the axe which near him shone
When midnight storms are mustering wrath. With a clear and ghastly glitter-
She fear'd - she felt that something ill Oh! that parting-hour was bitter!
Lay on her soul, so deep and chili - Even the stern stood chill'd with awe:
That there was sin and shame she knew; Dark the crime, and just the law-
That some one was to die- but who? Yet they shudder'd as they saw.

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