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tendaiits; and Paulet's ° guard augmented the number to between one hundred and fifty and two hundred spectators. Before eight, a message was sent to the queen, who replied that she would be ready in half an hour. At that time, 5 Andrews, the sheriff, entered the oratory, and Mary arose, taking the crucifix from the altar in her right, and carrying her prayer-book in her left, hand. Her servants were forbidden to follow; they insisted; but the queen bade them to be content, and turning, gave them her blessing.
10 They received it on their knees, some kissing her hands, others her mantle. The door closed; and the burst of lamentation from those within resounded through the hall.
Mary was now joined by the earl and her keepers, and descending the staircase, found, at the foot, Melville, the
15 steward of her household, who, for several weeks, had been excluded from her presence. This old and faithful servant threw himself on his knees, and wringing his hands exclaimed, "Ah, madam, unhappy me! was ever a man on earth the bearer of such sorrow as I shall be, when I report
20 that my good and gracious queen and mistress was beheaded in England!" Here his grief impeded his utterance; and Mary replied, "Good Melville, cease to lament; thou hast rather cause to joy than mourn; for thou shalt see the end of Mary Stuart's troubles. Know that this world
95 is but vanity, subject to more sorrow than an ocean of tears can bewail. But I pray thee, report that I die a true woman to my religion, to Scotland, and to France. May God forgive them that have long thirsted for my blood, as the hart doth for the brooks of water. O God, thou art the
90 author of truth, and truth itself. Thou knowest the inward cnamners or my thoughts, and tliat T always wished the union of England and Scotland. Commend me to my son, and tell him that I have done nothing prejudicial to the dignity or independence of his crown, or favorable to the pretended superiority of our enemies." Then bursting into tears, she said, "Good Melville, farewell;" and kissing him, "once again, good Melville, farewell, and pray for thy mistress and thy queen." It was remarked as some5 thing extraordinary, that this was the first time in her life she had ever been known to address a person with the pronoun "thou."
* 8l r A mi as Paulet was the person who had the custody of Mary's
The procession now set forward. It was headed by the sheriff and his officers; next followed Paulet and Drury,
10 and the Earls of Shrewsbury and Kent; and lastly came the Scottish queen, with Mellville bearing her train. She wore the richest of her dresses — that which was appropriate to the rank of a queen dowager. Her step was firm, and her countenance cheerful. She bore without shrinking
15 the gaze of the spectators, and the sight of the scaffold, the block, and the executioner, and advanced into the hall with that grace and majesty which she had so often displayed in her happier days, and in the palace of her fathers. To aid her as she mounted the scaffold, Paulet offered
20 his arm. "I thank you, sir," said Mary; "it is the last trouble I shall give you, and the most acceptable service you have ever rendered me."
The queen seated herself on a stool which was prepared for her. On her right stood the two earls; on the left the
25 sheriff and Beal, the clerk of the council; in front, the executioner from the Tower, in a suit of black velvet, with his assistant, also clad in black. The warrant was read, and Mary, in an audible voice, addressed the assembly. She would have them recollect that she was a sov
30 ereign princess, not subject to the parliament of England, but brought there to suffer by injustice and violence. She, however, thanked her God that he had given her this opportunity of publicly professing her religion, and of declaring, as she had often before declared, that she had never
35 imagined, nor compassed, nor consented to, the death of the English queen, nor ever sought the least harm to her
person. After her death, many things, which were then buried in darkness, would come to light. But she pardoned from her heart all her enemies, nor should her tongue utter that which might turn to their prejudice. 5 Here she was interrupted by Dr. Fletcher, Dean of Peterborough, who, having caught her eye, began to preach, and under that cover, perhaps through motives of zeal, contrived to insult the feelings of the unfortunate sufferer. Mary repeatedly desired him not to trouble himself and
10 her. He persisted; she turned aside. He made the circuit of the scaffold, and again addressed her in front. An end was put to this extraordinary scene by the Earl of Shrewsbury, who ordered him to pray.
His prayer was the echo of his sermon; but Mary heard
15 him not . She was employed at the time in her devotions, repeating with a loud voice, and in the Latin language, passages from the book of Psalms; and after the dean was reduced to silence, a prayer in French, in which she begged of God to pardon her sins, declared that she forgave her
20 enemies, and protested that she was innocent of ever consenting, in wish or deed, to the death of her English sister. She then prayed in English for Christ's afflicted church, for her son James, and for queen Elizabeth, and in conclusion, holding up the crucifix, exclaimed, "As thy arms, O
25 God, were stretched out upon the cross, so receive me into the arms of thy mercy, and forgive my sins."
When her maids, bathed in tears, began to disrobe their mistress, the executioners, fearing the loss of their usual perquisites, hastily interfered. The queen remonstrated,
30 but instantly submitted to their rudeness, observing to the earls, with a smile, that she was not accustomed to employ such grooms, or to undress in the presence of so numerous a company.
Her servants, at the sight of their sovereign in this la35 mentable state, could not suppress their feelings; but Mary, putting her finger to her lips, commanded silence, gave them her blessing, and solicited their prayers. She then seated herself again. Kennedy, taking from her a handkerchief edged with gold, pinned it over her eyes; the executioners, holding her by the arms, led her to the block; 5 and the queen, kneeling down, said repeatedly, with a firm voice, "Into thy hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit."
But the sobs and groans of the spectators disconcerted the headsman. He trembled, missed his aim, and inflicted a deep wound in the lower part of the skull. The queen 10 remained motionless; and at the third stroke her head was severed from her body. When the executioner held it up, the muscles of the face were so strongly convulsed, that the features could not be recognized. He cried as usual, "God save queen Elizabeth." 15 "So perish all her enemies!" subjoined the Dean of Peterborough.
"So perish all the enemies of the gospel!" exclaimed, in a still louder tone, the fanatical Earl of Kent.
"Not a voice was heard to cry amen. Party feeling was absorbed in admiration and pity.
XCIV. —THE SHIPWRECK.
[john 'wilson was born May 19,1785, at Paisley, in Scotland, and died April 3,18&t. In 1812 he published a poem called the " Isle of Palms," which won high, though not wide, admiration, for its tenderness of feeling and beauty of sentiment. In 1816 there appeared from his pen a volume containing ,' Tho City of the Plague," a dramatic poem, and several miscellaneous pieces inverse. In 1820 he was appointed professor of moral philosophy in the University of Edinburgh, succeeding Dr. Thomas Brown. In 1822 he published,anonymously, a volume called " The Lights and Shadows of Scottish Life," containing several stories and sketches illustrating the traits and manners of the rural population of Scotland. A novel in the same style, called "Margaret Lyndsay," was published by him in 1823. liut his ablest and most characteristic productions are those which he wrote from time to time for " Blackwood's (Edinburgh) Magazine."
His intellectual powers were accompanied and enforced by the finest physical gift*. His form was cast in the noblest mould of manly beauty. He was a
keen sportsman, and excelled In all athletic exercises. In his youth and early manhood, there was a dash of wildness and eccentricity about him, which increased the interest inspired by his brilliant genius. In the collected edition of his works, published in twelve volumes, since his death, his contributions to " Blackwood's Magazine" occupy ten of the volumes, under the titles of ,' Noctes Ambrosianae," in four volumes," Essays, Critical and Imaginative," in four volumes, and the" Recreations of Christopher North,*' in two volumes. In these productions the genius of Wilson appears in its full strength — rich, exuberant, boundless, and overflowing. Wit the most dashing and reckless, poetry the most lavish, the most glowing eloquence, the finest descriptive power, the most genuine pathos and tenderness, combine to throw their attractions over his pages. His thoughts, images, and illustrations stream forth with the power and rapidity of a mountain torrent. He is remarkable especially for descriptive genius and critical skill. The characteristic features of Scottish scenery have never been delineated in verse with more true poetical feeling and quick sensibility than in the prose of Wilson. He is not a poet of the first class, but as a critic of poetry he has no superior. His principles of poetical criticism are philosophically correct; and they are applied under the guidance of the finest appreciative faculty. The following extract is from " The Isle of Palms."]
Her giant form
O'er wrathful surge, through blackening storm,
Majestically calm, would go,
Mid the deep darkness, white as snow! 6 But gentler now the small waves glide
Like playful lambs o'er a mountain's side;
So stately her bearing, so proud her array,
The main she will traverse forever and aye.
Many ports will exult at the gleam of her mast! 10 — Hush! hush! thou vain dreamer! this hour is her last
Five hundred souls in one instant of dread
Are hurried o'er the deck;
And fast the miserable ship
Becomes a lifeless wreck. 15 Her keel hath struck on a hidden rock,
Her planks are torn asunder,
And down come her masts with a reeling shock,
And a hideous crash like thunder.
Her sails are draggled in the brine, 20 That gladdened late the skies,
And her pendant that kissed the fair moonshine
Down many a fathom lies.