Page images

conflict.Oh, my dear sir, how glad would I have often been in the gloomy hours of solitude and privation I had to encounter, to have seen you—to have heard your lips explain once more those delicious truths, at once my comfort and my bane. My repeated solicitations to that effect, were, however, of no avail; and it was at last only when in the tremor of weakness, they had extorted from me a terrible promise, that my relatives consented you should be brought. I cannot express the joy your presence has inspired. Oh, do tell me," she continued, while she clasped her hands, and her countenance assumed an expression of the deepest earnestness, “ is there any hope of heaven for one so long an unbeliever? Can an outcast such as I am, enjoy any portion of that Saviour's love, so long but unconsciously despised ?" As she was speaking, her beautiful but wasted features, would at times light up with an expression that seemed to the intensely interested minister, to glow like the prophet's of old, with a halo of inspiration; and again be veiled in an imploring dejection, as if her very heart was withering within. When she finished a narration that melted the softened minister to tears, the exertion seemed too much for a frame so debilitated, and she sank back exhausted upon the sofa. Kaunitz, with unreflecting impulse, caught her in his arms. All consciousness seemed to be suspended-her thrilling eyes were veiled in their long dark lashesand as her motionless but yielding form was pressed to his, the gentle pulses of her bosom seemed to be at rest, and lise itself to have fled. Yet there was a holiness in the saint-like composure of that reposing form, he felt it would be profanation to disturb, and the deep silence of the place, broken only by the audible throbbings of his own heart, had something so sacred in its very stillness, that he felt his existence could have resolved into the kindred state of the lovely inanition in his arms, before his slightest breath would have recalled to life, by invoking infidel assistance, a spirit so purely and unequivocally destined for the skies. The warm tears, however, in which his agonized feelings had found vent, gushing unrestrained upon her features, brought back her hovering soul once more to earth. She opened her eyes, and her glance resting on the speaking tenderness of Kaunitz gaze, beamed with an instant and joyous recognition. Her first words were of her melancholy but ever constant theme. “Oh, tell me," said she, "can I hope for pardon ?" The overpowered clergyman relinquished his hold, and affected, with inexpressible emotion, knelt down beside her, and in an eloquence of soul he had never felt before, besought the throne of Mercy to pour the full assurance of pardon in her heart. As he grew more fervent in the power of his God, he called upon the present Jesus to finish the redemption of a spirit so ripe for heaven-to remove the awsul obduracy of her relations, and to strengthen that gentle mind with more than creature firmness in the ordeal of danger she would have to encounter. When he had finished, the lovely convert still remained in an attitude of intense devotion; her fair white hands were clasped upon her bosom; her countenance was upturned to heaven, but the agony of doubt had departed. Her soul seemed entranced in rapture, and her exquisite features were lit up with a beaming satisfaction, that partook of the radiance of anticipated immortality. Kaunitz never saw any form of earth look half so lovely.

Every trace of anguish and despair had left her features, for a joyous flush of resplendent satisfaction; and the unutterable charms of the heart's deep and unearthly delight, shining through the most perfect lineaments of mortal beauty, gave, in that exquisite moment, such an angelic lustre to her person, that the first impulse of the impassioned clergy man was to adore, what seemed to be a revelation of heaven's own sinless and immortal loveliness. In that holy time, too, he felt in the kindred glow of his own excited spirit, all those ardent feelings of sympathy and admiration with which the casual sight of that fair creature had first inspired him, explained and resuscitated, but so refined by the redeeming influence of her stainless purity, that not a tinge of earthly love or passion mingled in his thoughts.

In a short time the lady rose from her knees, and the celestial animation of her face was clouded, but only deepened by the tone of solemn and emphatic seriousness in which she said, while she clasped her hands convulsively, “Oh, my God, I feel, I feel now that thy religion is worth all which I will have to suffer. Yes, my dear Maria, the blessed knowledge of thy Jesus, and the certainty of thy glorious eternity is worth - "-a cold damp came on her brow " is worth, I feel, is worth, dying for.” As she spoke the word to which her lips almost refused to give utterance, Kaunitz felt a shivering thrill of instinctive dread steal over his frame,

the horrible mysteries with which his visit was accompanied, the " terrible promise" she had mentioned, and her words now; all rushed, with numberless dark associations, into his freezing mind. He seized her hand, and gazed at her pale damp features with an unconscious agony. "Lady, — what suffering ?- Worth dying for? Zorah, dear Zorah, what is it you mean ?” She returned his look with cold and chilling earnestness for an instant, but another smile of inborn happiness again lít up her fast-sinking features with all their former beauty. “Yes,” said she, “it is not for me to know the pleasures of your religion and live. Oh, God, support me.This very night.-- Your arrival is the only mercy I could obtain.-- This very night--even in a few short moments, unless I abjure the religion of Jesus, I will be put to death.-By my own dear father.--By my own relatives, in the presence of the full Sanhedrim, and with the great solemnities of our religion, will I be STONED to DEATH !"- Kaunitz eyes grew dim; he stirred not-spoke not, but every word fell with dark and withering distinctness on his heart. “Look here," continued the hapless maiden, summoning strength to rise, and walking to the side of the apartment, “look here, and you will be convinced of the reality of my fate ?” She drew aside a curtain. Kaunitz, with a chill as if his heart was turned to ice, saw a large heap of stones collected in the recess. He had not the power to move. The room was still as ever. But that ominous silence and its smothered noises now spake fearful volumes. The full extent of the appalling tragedy flashed in instant comprehension on his mind. Then, too, he recollected, in crowding horror, many a dim tale of the relentless tortures with which Jews were said to martyr any of the converted sect who ever fell into their power; and when, in the same instantaneous act of mind, he thought of the spotless innocence

and exquisite beauty of the delicate victim they had doomed before him, and, as it were, made him a very party to the atrocious deed, his energies

seemed to melt and dissolve in the weakness of intensest agony. : But the re-action to that paralysis of terror was instant. He already fan

cied he heard the tread of the murderers—the fearful preparations for the sacrifice—the unavailing shriek of the lovely victim. His blood seemed turned to fire at the thought, and his frame to iron. He stepped back, and he felt his body, as it were, swell beyond the stature of humanity, as he said, in a tone that echoed like thunder throughout the midnight stillness of the vast apartment, “By the God I serve, in whose power, and whose minister I am, this shall never be!" Instant and gathering noises collected like an answer on every side. Distinct and dread commotion was in the house. But this was no time for the infuriated man to parley with his fears or his reflections. Maddened with superhuman excitement, he dashed against the door with a giant's might. In an instant crash, like the explosion of artillery, the whole partition went thundering to the ground, and a burst of dazzling light, from unnumbered lamps, streamed like the blaze of meridian day into the room. The very arcana of their mysteries

- the Holy of Holies of the Jewish faith, in all its splendor, was before him, with its Seraphim and Cherubin, and Ark of gold; its curtains of richest purple, its network of silver, and its countless lamps burning with frankincense, and glittering with costly gems.* The glories of their revealed religion—the enchantment of the scene, stopped him not a moment, for in simultaneous fury, host aster host of armed and shouting wretches in their national costume, rushed into the room. Nerved for the occasion with more than mortal power, to dash the intervening myrmidons to the earth, and to clasp the intended martyr in his arm, was, with Kaunitz, but the work of a moment. Ere they had time to overmaster his roused and terrific energies, he had snatched a dagger which an assailant had already at his throat, and as he sprang over his shrinking and shriek ing foes every brandish of the weapon was bathed in blood. A huge window, streaming with painted story, was before him ; with a tiger's bound he reached the casement: the glass shivered with the shock: the iron network behind yielded like a cobweb to his Herculean strength. All was dark and deep below. Without a thought of consequences, or quiver as to danger, he clasped his rescued charge, in exultation, closer to his breast, and sprang into the vacuum.

It becomes painful to even trace the narrative. There is no heart so cold that would not catch a throb of delight in the success of that tremendous effort; nor is it in humanity to peruse the story and not feel the glow of its warmest feelings, interested in the preservation of that innocent and lovely martyr. The gallant attempt of the generous young minister was not, however, attended with the success which its reckless heroism de

* La population Israëlite de cette ville conserve seigneusement sa croyance. Les familles riches ont en général dans leurs maisons, un appartement secret et meublé à grands frais, destiné à la représentation du Saint des Saints du temple de Solomon. Ce lieux, et autres destinés a leur service religioux sont tenu caché aux profanos.- Lettres de Vienne. Paris, 1781.

served ;

and the terrible mansion was too securely adapted for its deeds of darkness to admit of an escape so easily. Himself and his charge escaped unscathed indeed from that host of fiends, but it was only to fall again into their meshes with more certain fatality. A crowd of infuriated enemies was soon around him ; egress seemed impracticable; and, weakened hy his vast exertions, the heroic young man soon fell bleeding and insensible beneath their blows.

Awful as was the scene and excitement through which Kaunitz passed, there was a deeper terror on his mind-a blacker cloud upon his feelingswhen he recovered his senses and found himself in his own room, surrounded by anxious and inquiring friends. The mysterious messengers had kept their oath. His wounds were not dangerous, nor even severe; but his instant perception of the absence of the lady, lest a withering feeling in his heart, that darkened the future and extinguished hope.

His harrowing narrative caused an immediate and vivid commotion throughout Vienna. By the orders of administration-the officers of justice, commenced a vigorous and extensive scrutiny-public opinion was fearfully excited—a cloud of accumulating suspicion seemed to gather over one of the richest banking houses in the city. One of the wealthiest Jews was arrested on the unequivocal testimony of the minister; but the financial embarrassment of the government, after the protracted war in which the empire had been involved, afforded the ample solution of state policy to the termination of the proceedings. Further official inquiry was dropped—the contractor was released--and, in a short time, the terrible narrative of the Proselyte ceased to be the topic of conversation. Kaunitz, however, was never aster seen to smile. His pulpit was deserted, and heat length totally disappeared. Whether the threat consequent upon disclosure was fulfilled-or whether to hide the anguish of his spirit, he had removed to a foreign country, could not be ascertained.

Let us drop the curtain on this tragic story. The mind cannot presume to penetrate the undeveloped mystery of that unfortunate's fate, without recoiling on itself, and it is fitter for the honor of humanity, that that black transaction should repose for ever in the darkness which all the authorities of the time could not remove, than that curiosity or research should throw the light of certainty upon awful doings, of which the bare surmise gives a sludder to the heart, and which the finest sympathies of our nature would prefer shrouding in appropriate and impenetrable obscurity. ORCATIUS.

The only elucidation necessary to this extraordinary story, will be found in the following extract :

Burt; nach die Ermordung Bartjes, wurde allgemeine aufmerksamkeit auf sie (the Jews) gerichtet-wegen einige anserordentliche Entdeckungen eines Intherischen Predigers in jinsicht des Martyrerthums einer jungen Dame welche zum Christenthum bekehrt worden war. cuegen diesen Iers dacht wurde der Principai eines TV'ecisel-Wauses in lVien in verhaft genommen, aber da er ein Staats-Glaeubiger zu einer bedeutende Summe war, und da kein ausdruecklicher Beweis statt fand, so wurde gegen ihn nichts weiter verfahren.-Kasbach's Beschreibung. Stuttgard, 1802.




[ocr errors]

• 285



America and the Americans-reviewed 252 Editor's table

- 00, 119, 185, 258, 330
A ramble in the woods—by J. K. Paulding 15 Evenings in Greece, Moore's--reviewed 188
Arctic lover to his mistress-by William Eloquence, modern, the schools of

Cullen Bryant
29 English eloquence

- 263
Art of being happy

• 140
Art of making poetry-by an Emeritus Pro-

fessor -

American bar, Sketches of, Daniel Webster 281 Fisherman, the-a tale of the Hebrides
Amy Dayton, a tale of the revolution - 301

Financial reform-Sir Henry Parnell's
Family portraits-my aunt Barbara

Song from “How blest a life
the soldier leads"

Farewell of a pilgrim father to England-by
Cornelius Webbe

- 376
Albatross, the--by Orcatius ·

American portrait gallery, notice of

Falstaff, articles by

- 185, : 370
Faust, Goethe's

Address spoken by Mrs. Sharpe, at the Dun-

lap Benefit

Translations from 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43,
Album verses

44, 79, 80, 81, 82

Lord Leveson's Gower, translation of
Antwerp, siege of


American theatre, history of-reviewed · 126

. 99
Architecture of birds-reviewod -

Fanny, a novel, in seven chapters

“ Fill round once more before we go" 184

Faces--by the author of "Dreams and Re-

Flint's lectures-reviewed

Bryant, William Cullen, Esq.-his letter to

Fine arts
the Dunlap committee


194, 255, 322

Finden's illustrations of Byron-noticed 256
Burns compared with Byron

- gallery of the graces

Botany, alphabet of-reviewed

Fairy invitations

Belles philosophy


French orators
Bossuet, eloquence of

261, 2-3
Extracts from his sermons

Burke, Edmund


Buckingham, J. S. Esq., poetry by
271 Ghost hunter-reviewed

Bachelor, recollections of a-Chapter 3. - 247 Gallery of the society of painters in water
Butterfly, verses on a
285 colors--noticed -

. 255
Byron, Lord, lines on
182 of portraits-noticed -

review of his character and Gipseys of Granada--by the author of "
works -

Year in Spain"

Gilbert Stuart, biographical sketch of-by
Brevities--by Christopher Short

William Dunlap

Blue devils
374 Grattan, eloquence of


182, 187


[ocr errors]


Complete New-year's visitor-reviewed 61 Halleck, Fitz G. Esq. letters of, to the Dun-
Curran, eloquence of

lap committee

Chasse, General, memoir of

67 Hall, Rev. Robert-his character and genius 332
Croker's edition of Boswell's Johnson-re-

Horæ Germanice-No. 1, 33. No. 2 - 77

Hosack, Dr. letter on the Dunlap benefit

Cousin Sue, a novel, in seven chapters 203

Hebrew language, observations on 132, 211
Coming in of spring, the-by Cornelius

History of the New Zealanders--reviewed. 255


• 373
Combe's constitution of man-reviewed 315
Clarke, Dr. Adam, observations on his cha-

racter -
251 Introduction

Clermont, council of:
333 Irish eloquence

Johnson, Samuel, life of


-, Observations on the character of - 277
Italian opera -

Dermot McMorrogh-reviewed

124 Indian eloquence, specimens of-by William
De Linguendes-Rapin's opinion of his ser Dunlap

333 “I love thee not for the dark, bright locks"-
Doings of the dead-a fragment

• 256
Dunlap benefit, correspondence of the 323 Ipsara, ruins of :

• 153
Drama, the

65 Ireland, Taylor's history of-reviewed
Drinking song-by IIenry De Witt
114 "I will love thee no more"

of the Burschenschaften, from Inkling of an adventure


173 Italian republics, origin and influence of-by
Dowse, Thomas--by William Dunlap, Esq.- 281

Professor L. L. da Ponte




[ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »