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She fear'd-she felt that something ill
But mournfully and slow;
With a deep sound, to and fro•
Heavily to the heart they go! Hark! the hymn is singing
The song for the dead below,
Or the living who shortly shall be so!
But brighter still the beam was thrown
which would not brook such bliad: As if they dared not look on death! “No-yours my forfeit blood and breathThese hands are chain'd—but let me die At least with an unshackled eyeStrike!”_-And as the word he said, Upon the block he bow'd his head; These the last accents Hugo spoke; “Strike!”—and flashing fell the strokeRoll’d the head-and, gushing, sunk Back the stain'd and heaving trunk In the dust, which each deep vein Slaked with its ensanguined rain; His eyes and lips a moment quiver, Convulsed and quick-then fix for ever. He died, as erring man should die,
Without display, without parade; Meekly had he bow'd and pray'd, As not disdaining priestly aid, Nor desperate of all hope on high. And while before the prior kneeling, His heart was wean'd from earthly feeling; His wrathful sire-his paramourWhat were they in such an hour ? No more reproach--no more despair; No thought but heaven-no word but prayer Save the few which from him broke, When, bared to meet the headsman's stroke, He claim'd to die with eyes unbound, His sole adieu to those around. (1)
(1) “ The grand part of this poem is that which describes the execution of the rival son; and in which, though there in no XVIII.
But whatsoe'er its end below,
Still as the lips that closed in death,
Beyond the blow that to the block
Pierced through with forced and sullen shock, Save one:-what cleaves the silent air So madly shrill, so passing wild ? That, as a mother's o'er her child, Done to death by sudden blow, To the sky these accents go, Like a soul's in endless woe. Through Azo's palace-lattice driven, That horrid voice ascends to heaven, And every eye is turn’d thereon; But sound and sight alike are gone ! It was a woman's shriek—and ne'er In madlier accents rose despair; And those who heard it, as it pass'd, In mercy wish'd it were the last.
Hugo is fallen; and, from that hour,
And Azo found another bride And goodly sons grew by his side; But none so lovely and so brave As him who wither'd in the grave; Or if they were-on his cold eye Their growth but glanced unheeded by, Or noticed with a smother'd sigh. But never tear his cheek descended, And never smile his brow unbended; And o'er that fair broad brow were wrought The intersecled lines of thought; Those furrows which the burning share Of sorrow ploughs untimely there ; Scars of the lacerating mind Which the soul's war doth leave behind. He was past all mirth or woe: Nothing more remain'd below But sleepless nights and heavy days, A mind all dead to scorn or praise, A heart which shunn'd itself-and yet That would not yield-nor could forget, Which, when it least appear'd to melt, Intensely thought-intensely felt: The deepest ice which ever froze Can only o'er the surface closeThe living stream lies quick below, And flows-and cannot cease to flow. Still was his seal’d-up bosom haunted By thoughts which Nature hath implanted; Too deeply rooted thence to vanish, Howe'er our stified tears we banish; When, struggling as they rise to start We check those waters of the heart, They are not dried those tears unshed But flow back to the fountain-head, And resting in their spring more pure, For ever in its depths endure, Unseen, unwept, but uncongeald, And cherish'd most where least reveal'd. With inward starts of feeling left, To throb o'er those of life bereft; Without the power to fill again The desert gap which made his pain; Without'the hope to meet them where United souls shall gladness share, With all the consciousness that he Had only pass'd a just decree; That they had wrought their doom of ill; Yet Azo's age was wretched still. The tainted branches of the tree,
If lopp'd with care, a strength may give,
pomp, either of language or of sentiment, and though every thing ness, there is a spirit of pathos and poetry to which it would not is conceived and expressed with the utmost simplicity and direct be easy to find many parallels.” Jeffrey.
By which the rest shall bloom and live
The waving boughs with fury scathe,
(2) “In Parisina there is no lumult or slir. It is all sad the whole wrapped in a rich and redundant veil of poetry, where ness, and pity, and terror. There is too much of horror, perbaps,' every thing breathes the pure essence of genius and sensibility." in the circumstances; but the wriling is beautiful throughout, and Jeffrey.
The Prisoner of Chillon;
A FABLE. (1)
SONNET ON CHILLON.
ETERNAL Spirit of the chainless Mind! (2)
Brightest in dungeons, Liberty! thou art,
For there ihy habitation is the heart-
And when thy sons lo fetters are consign'd
To fetters, and the damp vault's dayless gloom,
Their country conquers with their martyrdom, And Freedom's fame finds wings on every wind. Chillon ! thy prison is a holy place,
And thy sad floor an altar-fur 'I was trod,
(1) When this poem was composed, I was not sufficiently aware dans le château de Chillon, où il resta sans elre interrogé jusof the history of Bonnivard, or I should have endeavoured lo qu'en 1836 ; il sut alors délivré par les Bernois, qui s'empareren! dignify the subject by an allempl to celebrale his courage and his du pays de Vaud. virtues. With some account of his lise I have been furnished, “ Bonnivard, en sortant de sa captivité, eut le plaisir de trouver by the kindness of a citizen of that republic, which is still proud Genève libre et réforme : la république s'empressa de lui lémoi-of the memory of a man worthy of the best age of ancient free-gner sa reconnaissance, et de le dédommager des maux qu'il avoil dom:
soufferts : elle le recul bourgeois de la ville au mois de juin 1576; “François de Bonnivard, fils de Louis de Bonnivard, origi- elle lui donna la maison habilce autrefois par le Vicaire-géneral, naire de Seyssel et Seigneur de Lunes, naquit en 1496. II fit ses cl elle lui assigna une pension de deux cents écus d'or tant qu'il éludes à Turin: en 1510 Jean Aimé de Bonnivard, son oncle, lui sejourncroit à Genève. Il fut admis dans le Conseil des Deusrésigna le prieuré de St. Victor, qui aboutissoit aux murs de
Cents en 1837. Genève, et qui formoit un bénélice considérable.
“Bonnivard n'a pas fini d'eire utile : après avoir travaille à “Ce grand homme-( Bonnivard merilc ce lilre par la force de rendre Genève libre, il réussit à la rendre tolérante. Bonnivard son ame, la droiture de son cæur, la poblesse de ses intentions, engagea le Conseil à accorder aux ccclésiastiques et aux paysans la sagesse de ses cooseils, le courage de ses démarches, l'étendue un lemps sultisant pour examiner les propositions qu'on leur faide ses connaissances et la vivacité de son esprit),-ce grand soit ; il réussit par sa douceur: on prèche toujours le Christiahomme, qui excitera l'admiration de tous ceur qu'une vertu hé- nisme avec succès quand on le preche avec charité. roique peut encore cmouvoir, inspirera encore la plus vive recon- “ Bonnivard sul savant : ses manuscrits, qui sont dans la binaissance dans les cæurs des Genevois qui aiment Genéve. Bon-bliothèque publique, prouvent qu'il avoit bien lu les auleurs clasnivard en sul loujours un des plus fermes appuis : pour assurer la siques latins, et qu'il avoit approfondi la theologie et l'histoire. liberté de notre république, il ne craignit pas de perdre souvent
Ce grand homme aimoit les sciences, et il croyoit qu'elles poula sienne : il oublia son repos; il méprisa les richesses; il ne né- voient faire la gloire de Genève; aussi il ne négligea rien pour les gligea rien pour affermir une pairie qu'il honora de son choix : lixer dans celle ville naissante; en 1831 il donna sa bibliothèque dès ce moment il la cherit comme le plus zélé de ses ciloyens ; au public; elle fut le commencement de notre bibliothèque puil la servit avec l'intrépidité d'un héros, et il écrivit son bistoire blique, et ces livres sont en partie ces rares et belles érlitions cu avec la naïvelé d'un philosophe et la chaleur d'un palriole. quinzième siècle qu'on voit dans notre collection. Enfin, pendant
“Il dit, dans le commencement de son histoire de Genève, la même année, ce bon patriole institua la république son heri. que dès qu'il eul commencé de lire l'histoire des nations, il se lière, à condition qu'elle employeroit ses biens à entretenir le sentit entrainé par son goul pour les républiques, dont il college dont on projeloit la fondation. épousa toujours les intérels : c'est ce goùl pour la liberté qui “Il paroit que Bonnivard mourut en 1570; mais on ne peut lui fit sans doule adopler Geneve pour sa patrie.
l'assurer, parce qu'il y a une lacune dane le Nécrologe depuis le “Bondivard encore jeune s'annonça haulement comme le dé-mois de juillet 1570, jusqu'en 1571." fenseur de Genève contre le duc de Savoye et l'Evéque.
Lord Byron wrote this beautiful poem at a small inn, in the “En 1519, Bonnivard devint le martyr de sa patrie: le Duc Hillie village of Ouchy, near Lausanne, where he happened, it de Savoye élant entre dans Genéve avec cinq cents hommes, June, 1816, lo be delained two days by stress of weather;" thereby Bonnivard craignit le ressentiment du Duc; il voulut se retirer a adding,” says Moore, "one more deathless association to the al Fribourg pour en éviter les suites; mais il fut trahi par deux ready immortalised localities of the Lake."-E. bommes qui l'accompagnoient, et conduit par ordre du Prince à (2) In the first draught, the sonnet opens thusGrolée, où il resta prisonnier pendant deux ans. Bonnivard étoil
" Beloved Goddess of the chainless mind! malheureux dans ses voyages : comme ses malheurs n'avoient
Brightest in dungeons, Liberty ! thou art. point ralenti son zèle pour Genève, il étoit toujours un ennemi
Thy palace is within the Frreman's heart, redoutable pour ceux qui la menacoient, et par conséquent il
Whose soul the love of thee alone can bind; devoit etre exposé à leurs coups. Il fut rencontré en 1530 sur le
And wben thy suns to fellers are consign'dJura, par des voleurs, qui le dépouillèrent, et qui le mirent en
To fetters, and the damp vault's dayless gloom,
Thv joy is with thein still, and unconfined, core entre les majas du Duc de Savoye : ce Prince le lit enfermer
Their country conquers with their martyrdom."-E.
Until his very steps have left a trace
Worn, as if thy cold pavement were a sod, By Bonnivard!-May none those marks efface;
For they appeal from tyranny to God.
THE PRISONER OF CHILLON. (1)
My hair is grey, but not with years,
Nor grew it white
In a single night,
But rusted with a vile repose, (3)
And mine has been the fate of those
Six in youth and one in age,
Proud of Persecution's rage; (4)
There are seven columns massy and grey,
And in each ring there is a chain;
For in these limbs its teeth remain,
A grating sound—not full and free
It might be fancy-but to me
(1) "I will tell you something about Chillon. A M. de Luc, in 1726, at Geneva, was the author of many geological works, binety years old, a Swiss, had it read to him, and is pleased with and corresponded with most of the learned societies of Europe. il-so my sister wriles. He said that he was with Rousseau at
-E. Cbilion, and that the description is perfectly correct. But this (2) Ludovico Sforza, and others. The same is asserted of Marje is not all; I recollected something of the name, and find the fol- Antoinelle's, the wise of Louis the Sixteenth, though not in quite lowing passages in The Confessions, vol. iii. p. 217, liv. iii. 'De so short a period. Grief is said to have the same effect; lo such, lous ces amusements, celui qui me plut davanlage fut une prome- and not to fear, this change in hers was to be attributed. pade autour du Lac, que je fis en batcau avec De Luc père, sa (3) In the MS.bonne, ses deux fils, et ma Thérèse. Nous mimes sept jours à
“ But with the inward waste of grief."-E. cette lournée par le plus beau temps du monde. J'en gardai le vil souvenir des sites qui m'avoient frappe à l'autre extremile du
(4) In the MS.Loc, et dont je fis la description, quelques années aprės, dans La
“ Braving rancour-chains-and rage."-E. Nouvelle Héloise.' This nonagenarian, De Luc, must be one of (8) The fidelity of Lord Byron's description of the dungeon of the deus lils.' He is in England, infirm, but still in facully. It is Chillon, 10 which he has given a dealbless interest, is shown in odd that he should have lived so long, and not wanting in oddness, the engraving in Finden's Illustralions, from Mr. Stanfield's that he should bave made this voyage with Jean Jacques, and af- drawing of the interior of the prison.-E.
terwards, at such an interval, read a poem by an Englishman (6) “This picture of the first feelings of the three gallane (who inade precisely the same circumnavigation) upon the same brothers, when bound apart in this living tomb, and of the grascenery."-B. Lellers, April 9, 1817.— Jean André de Luc, dual decay of their cheery fortitudo, is full of pity and agony." P.R. S., died at Windsor, in the July followiog. lle was born Jeffrey.
I was the eldest of the three,
And to uphold and cheer the rest
I ought to do--and did my best-
The youngest, whom my father loved,
For him my soul was sorely moved :
(When day was beautiful to me
A polar day, which will not see
Its sleepless summer of long light,
And thus he was as pure and bright,
Lake Leman lies by Cbillon's walls :
Which round about the wave inthrals:
Sounding o’er our heads it knock'd :
And then the very rock hath rock'd,
And I have felt it shake, unshock'd,
The other was as pure of mind,
With joy:—but not in chains to pine:
I saw it silently decline
And so perchance in sooth did mine:
Had follow'd there the deer and wolf;
To him this dungeon was a gulf, And fetter'd feet the worst of ills.
I said my nearer brother pined,
(1) The Chateau de Chillon is situated between Clarens and bistory of this castle,” says Mr. Tennant, who went over it in 1821, Villeneuve, which last is at one extremity of the Lake of Geneva. “is, I believe, involved in doubt. By some historians it is said On its left are the entrances of the Rhone, and opposite are the to be built in the year 1120, and according to others, in the year heights of Meilerie and the range of Alps above Boveret and Si. 1936; but by whom it was built seems not to be knows. It is Gingo. Near it, on a bill behind, is a torrent: below it, wasbing said, however, in history, that Charles the Fifth, Duke of Saroy, its walls, the lake has been fathomed lo the depth of 800 feel, stormed and cook it in 1536; that he there found great hidden French measure: within it are a range of dungeons, in which the treasures, and many wretched beings pining away their lives in early reformers, and subsequently prisoners of state, were con- these frightful dungeons, amongst whom was the good Bonnivard. fined. Across one of the vaults is a beam black with age, on On the pillar to which this unfortunate man is said to have been which we were informed that the condemued were formerly exe- chained, 1 observed, cut out of the stone, the name of one whose culed. In the cells are seven pillars, or rather eight, one being beautiful poem has done much to heighten the interest of this half merged in the wall; in some of these are rings for the sellers dreary spot, and will, perhaps, do more towards rescuing from and the feltered; in the pavement the steps of Bonnivard bave oblivion the names of Chillon' and 'Bonnivard,' than all the left their traces. He was confined bere several years. It is by cruel sufferings wbich that injured man endured within its damp this castle that Rousseau has fired the catastrophe of his Héloïse, and gloomy walls."-E.) In the rescue of one of her children by Julie from the water; the
(2) lo the MS. sbock of which, and the illness produced by the immersion, is the cause of her death. The chaleau is large, and seen along the "But why with bold the blow?-be died."-E. lake for a great distance. The walls are while.-("Tho carly