图书图片
PDF

hand, as he asked in a sonorous and gentle voice, "Whether Master Falkner wanted a workman?"

The old man's penetrating look rested for a long time upon the youth; it seemed strange that a -workman should come to seek employ at so early an hour—but the longer the master looked upon his visiter, the more he felt favourably inclined towards him ; and suddenly a new light seemed to dawn upon his senses—the plan which, so long, he had sought in vain, was at once clearly and firmly impressed upon his soul. The whole grand structure of the Cathedral was before his mind's eye, and quickly, with firm and experienced hand, he sketched the single sections of the magnificent plan. As, with a happy face and thankful heart, he overlooked the whole, he again perceived the stranger, who still stood at a respectful distance modestly awaiting a reply.

"Thou art most weleome," exclaimed the master, proffering his hand; "your appearance was well-timed, and now you shall steadily assist me at this building, the plan of which became clear and distinct to my mind the instant I beheld you. And should my strength fail me before my great plan is accomplished, you shall finish the edifice in my stead, for you seem to have appeared to me like a messenger from my Lord and Master, to whose honour and glory I have already built many a temple, and am now about to build the last. Enough, we shall remain together."

The youth shook hands with the old master, to confirm the bargain, and that day the foundation of St. Stephen's Cathedral was laid. Everywhere was Angelo — for that was the name of the strange workman—at hand, in every place was he ready with advice and counsel, and although the old master had not communicated his plans to him, yet he seemed to know every line of his design, to the most minute particulars; for wherever old Falkner could not be present and direct the building himself, Angelo did so in his stead, and the master was often no little astonished, when he came and found his plans executed even without his own direction.

Besides Angelo, there were of course a great number of other strange workmen employed at the building; all of these were much attached to Angelo, and a friendly word from him would at all times induce them to work cheerfully even beyond the working hours. For the old master, who feared that he would not live to see the completion of his work, hurried them, and his young friend aided his endeavours. By these means the affection of Octavian Falkner towards Angelo increased daily, and often he confided to his skill the execution of a task such as is usually only given to the foreman.

The foreman, whose name was Piedro, was a man of most repulsive personal appearance: his hair and beard were coarse and red, his small gray eyes lay deep beneath a sharply projecting forehead, and the malicious expression of his ugly face was positively fiendish. The master himself could gain no proper confidence in this man, and would much rather have confided the supervision of his workmen and apprentices to Angelo, if the latter had only been a little older.

Piedro observed this well, and from that hour persecuted the young man with all the hatred and envy of his nature. Wherever he could injure him, or could balk his good intentions, he never missed a chance, and never failed to excite the ill feelings of his fellowworkmen against Angelo.

One morning, whilst Angelo, with many others, was working upon a staging at some distance from the foreman, he observed that the staging was but slightly secured, and in danger of breaking down. As the erection and supervision of the stagings was solely the business of the foreman, Angelo called the workmen down from their dangerous position, and went to Piedro to call his attention to the fault in the staging. When he arrived at the place where the foreman was working with about twenty men, he overheard the following conversation.

"But why," began Piedro, "should the good city of Vienna erect such a costly building? Are there not churches enough already without this, and is it not a waste of time and money to build one so very magnificent as this? In olden times they had no churches at all, and people were no worse then than now; on the contrary, they were richer and happier, because they did not feed a pack of lazy parsons and priests upon the fruits of their industry, nor build stone churches with them. We are positive fools to work with so much industry and energy upon this building! What, after all, is the difference whether it is completed one year sooner or later? Let us take [—it easy, boys."

"Piedro speaks wisely," commenced another. "The large sums of money which arc expended on this building might help the poor of the good city of Vienna out of all sorts of trouble and need. And that would be serving the Lord much better, and in a more reasonable way, than by building expensive churches. Come, let us have a holiday for to-day."

"I know," said a third, "that building is necessary; for how else should we get work and the means of living? but why should they always build churches, where painters and sculptors always get as much, or even more money than we? Why don't they build fine houses and manufactories? I say we are fools if we work a bit more at this building than our regular hours."

'' But our master says that this building is to the greater honour and glory of God," observed a fourth; "and Angelo says, that a true man takes more pleasure and delight in seeing his work well and nicely done, than in the wages he receives for it."

"Angelo is a greenhorn, who has bewildered your senses with his fantastic ideas !" growled Piedro, at the moment when the subject of his remark joined the group.

"It is not well, Piedro," said Angelo, in a quiet and modest tone, "to dampen the energy and industry of the workmen by such speeches as yours. How Master Falkner would grieve to hear you speak thus, for the desire to see the edifice quickly completed gives him no rest, neither night or day. He is an old man, and his days are numbered; for love of him, my friends, if you will not for the glory of your Great Master in heaven, be industrious and persevering in your work."

"Angelo is right, and we have spoken very wrongly and stupidly just now," said a young workman, as, with a blush of shame upon his cheeks, he resumed his labour. Most of the other workmen followed his example, with the exception of Piedro, who gruffly exclaimed, "Hold your tongue, and keep your wisdom to yourself, or else run and carry tales to the master, and tell him what you have been listening to."

"I do not wish to answer your unjust speech," replied Angelo, "but only wish you to come with me, for the staging upon which we are to work threatens to break down."

The foreman muttered a curse between his teeth, and his furious look rested upon the youth, who silently walked before him. He had maliciously laid the plan to kill or disable Angelo for a long time; as he knew that the latter was always the first to mount and examine a staging, he had purposely constructed it badly. For he hated Angelo, and hoped easily to seduce all the labourers to his evil ways, if Angelo, in whom they all had confidence, and whom they loved, was no longer among them.

Angelo did not speak to his mastef of what had happened, but kept quietly on in his correct course. By his indefatigable industry and his friendly admonitions, he advanced the edifice as much as possible, and foiled every bad intention of the foreman.

One evening Angelo lay restlessly upon his couch; the building of the cathedral had advanced as far as the erection of the steeple, and Angelo, who lived in a little attic room very

near by, felt a desire to look at the beautiful structure. He dressed himself and looked out of the window, for the moon shone clear and bright. He had not looked long at the unfinished steeple, when he thought he saw a figure moving about among the boards and rafters of a high staging.

"Can Piedro again be working mischief?" he said to himself. "I must at once see what this means."

Hastily he drew his cloak around him, left the house, and as he well knew every nook and corner of that large building, he soon reached a place whence he could overlook the steeple. He was not mistaken; upon the highest staging stood the foreman; Angelo at once recognised his short, broad-shouldered figure.

"What can he be doing up there so late as this?" thought Angelo; "surely he did not ascend that place at midnight from love for the master or anxiety for the edifice."

Cautiously he approached the staging upon which he had seen Piedro a moment before; the latter, however, had disappeared, and no one was upon the staging. But scarcely had Angelo set his foot upon it, when with a fearful crash it broke down, and the youth was precipitated down that fearful height. In falling, Angelo saw the figure of the wicked foreman standing securely upon one of the rafters; but that figure was twice as large as the living Piedro, and a fiery red apron was wrapped like a cloak around his shoulders, and upon his red hat he wore a black cock-plume.

The noise of the falling staging quickly awoke all the neighbours, and soon people were at hand to extricate Angelo from the ruins. Master Falkner too appeared, and was greatly distressed at the idea that evil had befallen his young friend; but, wonderful to relate, the latter had not received the least injury. He had fallen upon a pile of straw mattresses, which lay on the lowest staging, and which had been used the day before, to protect statuary and stone basso-relief work against injury on hoisting. On the following day already, he again appeared at his work, although his escape from injury was looked upon by all as a great miracle; the foreman, however, had disappeared that night, and was never again seen or heard from afterwards.

On one bright day, not long after the occurrence of the above events, the city of Vienna exhibited signs of great excitement and commotion. From every part of the empire, princes, nobles, and brave knights, fair ladies, yeomen and their wives and children, had come to Vienna to see the magnificent structure of St. Stephen's Cathedral, which was now completed, and which the Pope himself was to dedicate on this day. From every spire in the city, deeptoned bells called the Christian people to the solemn ceremony, and few who could possibly come there, stayed away.

Only the master, whose mind had created this splendid edifice, the pride and glory of his old age, only he lay sick and exhausted upon his couch, and whilst thousands repaired to the cathedral, he alone had to remain behind. Since the day when the evergreen wreath had been placed by the workmen upon the finished steeple, he had not been able to leave his house. As he heard the solemn and deep call of the bells, as he even heard the sound of the chorals through the lonely stillness around him, he folded his weary hands across his breast, and said sadly:

"Then I am not permitted to see that edifice completed; the house that I build for the honour and glory of my Father in Heaven! I am not permitted to kneel and pray among my fellow-men, and there to thank the Almighty for the strength he gave me to complete my last work,—for I feel it, that my earthly labour is now at an end! Oh it. is a hard, sad fate, but I will not murmur against the will of my Creator."

And he lay quietly and suffering, but from his sunken eyes bitter tears course slowly down his pale cheeks. Suddenly, even as in that night when he found the plan for his edifice, the door opened and Angelo entered; his figure appeared to the old master's eyes taller and

nobler than ever before, and his face had a bright transparent appearance. He approached the sick-bed, and with a voice, soft and gentle, but whose tones directly spoke to the heart, he said,

"Arise, your faith will help you, and the rich fount of God's mercy will again make you young and strong. I will conduct you to the Cathedral of St. Stephen's which you have built."

And suddenly the old master feels a wonderful strength; he feels that he again has the use of stiffened and lame limbs; he rises in his bed, his eye is again clear, his foot strong, and he takes the hand of the youth, who conducts him to the open portal of the cathedral.

There the congregation is kneeling, while solemn chorals are heard from the deep-toned organ; and Master Falkner as he beholds the perfect beauty of his work, sinks upon his knees, and in pious inspiration exclaims:

"Thou hast done this, oh Lord, my Father, and I have been but an humble instrument in Thy hands; but now I will gladly die, since my eyes hace been thus blessed."

Again he folded his hands across his breast, a blissful smile played upon his lips, and he sank dead on the ground. Those who stood around him, saw a handsome youth resembling Angelo, but standing in a halo of light, bend over the dead master, then ascend like a cloud of incense and melt into air.

THE EDITOR'S TABLE

Is modelled after the city of its birth, being made up entirely of rectangles and plane surfaces. It is, to speak geometrically, a rectangular parallelogram, five feet long by three and a half wide, and standing just two feet four inches from the floor. The plane superficies, thus described, is of black walnut, covered with cloth, and unencumbered except with the ordinary writing implements standing in the centre;—for howover lit(t)er-ary it may seem to have a table strewn with books and periodicals and rolls of MSS., yet in truth the "Editor," like the gladiator, wants nothing so much as a clear field. He may have a lounge on one side of the sanctum for a friend wb* calls to chat. He may have his shelves well laden with books. He may have his closet, with pigeon-boles unnumbered, where in well-assorted rows the "prose and poetry" of honoured contributors await their turn, in the various stages between receipt, acceptance, printing, and publication. He may even indulge in the mystery of drawers in Ms table, one, say, to hold his paper, another his portfolio, another his unanswered letters, another his manuscripts not yet disposed of. But "the table" itself must be clear of all obstructions. What oceans of elbow-room does it i not give? How its rectangles help to detect every deficient or hypermeter syllable in the "verses'' so often laid out upon it for dissection? How its dead level harmonises with but too many of the articles spread out there for examination? When a new book is to be criticised, what immense facilities for inspecting it, near by or at a distance, inside and outside, title-page and binding,

paper and typography, letter-press and embellishment* and all the varied lights and shadows of literary excellence!

Will some of our poetical correspondents give us a translation of Lainartine's Impromptu?

Will the ingenious author of the response to Du Solle's Poet-Martyr have the goodness to communicate her name?

GEORGE R. GRAHAM.

It is with much gratification that we are enabled to weleome back our friend George R. Graham, Esq., to his old position in the Magazine which has always borne his name. To know him intimately is to esteem him, and none have had better opportunities of appreciating his worth than we. The business relations of the publishers of Sax tain's Magazine with him, commenced as long as ten years ago, one in the capacity of artist, and the other : as confidential clerk, and this continued uninterruptedly I during the whole of his triumphant career as Proprietor and Editor of " Graham's Magazine." Changes of fortune had severed his connexion with it as to ownership some time before the commencement of our own very successful enterprise, and the editorship was largely shared by other hands; but now it is again emphatically '' Graham's Maganne," and it is in cordial sincerity we say to him "God Speed."

FASHIONS.

[graphic]

Figure 1. Evening dreu.—The coiffure hero is extremely pretty and Tory simple. It consists of a small ostrich feather on each side, connected by a wreath of foliage of green velvet, each leaf being edged with silver. Hair in plain bandeaux. Robe of tulle with two skirts, the lower of tulle, de Lyons, trimmed with nine rows of narrow blonde; the second skirt is of UUle-illusum, cut in waves around the edge, and trimmed with seven rows of blonde, set on very full and following the outline. The bouquet de jupc placed at the side is composed of foliage like that of the coiffure. Corsage with berthc-ehale and covered with narrow blondes. Four rows of similar blonde form the sleeves.

Figure 2. Evening dress.—Cap of rich lace ornamented with flowers and enveloping the back part of the head. Rose of taffetas broehe, rose, white, and in the foliage green. Skirt without trimming. Corsage high behind and upon the shoulders, and cut low and square iu front. The general tendency of dress is very much toward this stylo of corsage. Trimmed around the edge with rather wide lace. Sleeves demi-long, and finished with two rows of lace similar to that on tho corsage.

Pigurr 8. Toilettt dt ville.—Bonnet of black beaver, lined with white satin disposed in folds, and extending forward

[ocr errors][merged small]

only to a little more than one half the length of the face, and finished out with a band of black frixxed feathers. Upon the left side of the bonnet is a crescent, formed of black satin riband arranged in numerous small folds placed close one over the other. The crown is rounded behind. The cape is of black satin lined with white; the brides also are white. Redingote of green satin depot*. Corsage high and close-fllting, and trimmed with eleven rows of lace de laino forming a V. The upper four rows extend to the scam upon the shoulder, but the others, seven in number, diminish in length gradually to the waist. Round the neck is a narrow edging of white lace. Upon the skirt is an apron-like trimming of the same material, narrow at the top, but quite wide at the bottom. The arrangement of the lace in this trimming is xigxag, something in the shape of an M. Alt these laoes are a

[graphic][merged small]

TOILETTE DE VILLE.

little gathered, and extend one over the other. Sleeves a little short, and finished with five rows of the lace de laine. White puffing under-sleeves.

Figure 4. Ball Toilette.—Front hair in rounded puffing bandeaux. Upon tho head, a little in the Marie Stuart style, 1a a fillet of foliage, and at the side, pink flowers, in velvet, with long branches, slender and flexible, falling upon the shoulders. The back hair is enclosed in a little coif composed of foliage, arranged upon purl. This coif or cap has the form of a crown with the several crossings of the foliage.

Dress of white taffetas. Corsage cut lower in front than ai the shoulders, trimmed with a berthc of white blonde, In dents. This berthe is formed thus:—starting from the right shoulder, a row of the blonde passes round behind to the left shoulder, where it underlies a similar row starting thence, and, diminishing gradually in width across the front, comes to a point at the right shoulder. This berthe has very little fulness elsewhere than at the shoulders: it is trimmed at the top with flowers, liko those of the coiifure, forming little bouquets at the shoulders, and a row diminishing thence to the front.

The three very light overskirts of white tulle have each a heavy hem. The first, starting from the waist, descends en biais, and, passing entirely round, comes up on the other side near the starting point. The second and third follow the same arrangement. Being transparent, they are seen one over the other. Upon the right side are five bouquets corresponding in character with the other flowers. The form of these bouquets is peculiar; each has a head of flowers, and two branches of foliage placed right and

[graphic]

Fig. 4.

BALL DRESS.

left, at an oblique angle with each other, one being much tho longer. They are arranged so that tho longer of these branches alternately extends towards the right and left, following the course of a hem. These ornaments are very beautiful and tasteful, the light, flowing, and delicate character of tho foliage and flowers counteracting the effect of their profusion.

The prevailing fancy for rich fabrics causes stuffs brochees to be worn later than usual this spring. Many robes prepared in Paris, and intended to be worn very late in the season, are of taffctas lightly broche, some on turtle-coloured ground with white figures, some gray with white figures, some blue with black figures, and others with blended blue and green ground with figures green and white.

For trimming on robes in the spring, narrow lace matching the stuif is much in vogue, placed before in many rows and much gathered or turned in spirals. Dresses are made shorter in front than formerly, and, consequently, slippers take the place of boots.

For full evening dress of young persons the following are admired. First: Wreath of red currants and changeable foliage, falling almost to the shoulders. Robe of white taifetas with two plain jupes; berthe cut sloping upon the shoulders and bordered before with a ruche of riband. Corsage bouquet like tho coiffure, with long light foliago falling even to the waist. Second: Coiifure of heath-flowers disposed in a little puff, placed upon the top of the head; front hair turned back d la Valois. Rolw of rose tulle with two skirts upon an underskirt of satin, each skirt with five or six rather wide plaits. Corsage bouquet of heath with large loose branches.

« 上一页继续 »