« PreviousContinue »
poor Mari'a/ sitting under a pop'lar-she was sitting with her elbow/ in her lap', and her he'ad (leaning on one side') within her hand a small brook'/ ran at the fo'ot of the tre'e.
I bade the postillion go on with the chaise to Moulines'and La Fleur to bespeak my supʻper—and that I should w'alk after him.
She was dressed in white', a'nd/ mu'ch as my friend des'cribed her, except that her hair hung loose', which before was twis'ted/ within a silken ne't. She had superadded likewise to her jacket a pale-green rib'band, which fell across her shoulder/ to the waist'; at the end of whi'ch/ hung her pipe'. Her go'at had been as faith'less as her lover'; and she had got a little dôg/ in lieu' of him, which she kept tied by a strin'g/ to her gir'dle ; as I looked at her dog', she drew him towards her with the string—“ Thôu shalt not leave me, S'ylvio,” said she'. I looked in Maria's eyes', and saw she was thinking more of her father/ than of her lov`er/ or/ her little g'oat; for, as she uttered the words', the tesars/ trickled down her chee'ks.
I sat down close by' her; and Maria let me wipe them awa'y/ as they fell', with my hand'kerchief. I then steeped it in my own and then in hers'—and, then in mine' -and then I wiped hers' again'—an'd, a's I did it, I felt such undescribable emo'tions within' me, as I am sure could not be accoʻunted for/ from any combinations of mat'ter and m'otion.
I am positive I have a soul' ; no'r/ can all the books' (with which materialists have pestered the world') e'ver convi'nce me of the contrary.
When Maria had come a little to herself, I asked her, if she remembered a pale/ thin person of a man', who had sat down betwixt her' and her goʻat/ about two years before' ? She said, she was unsettled much at that time', but remembered it
two' accounts-thʼat, ill as she was', she saw the person pi’tied her; and next', that her goat had stolen his hand'kerchief, and she had bea'ten him/ for the the'ft—she had wa’shed it (she sa'id) in the brook', and kept it ever since in her poc'ket, to restore'-it-to-him/ (in case she should ever see him agʻain), wh’ich (she added) he had half pro'mised her. As she told me thi's, she took the handkerchief out of her pocket/ to let me se'e it: she had folded it up neat'ly/ in a couple of vine leaves', tied round with a ten drilon o'pening it, I saw an S'/ marked in one of the cor'ners.
She had since that (she told me) strayed as far as Rome', and walked round St. Peter's once'—and returned back'—that she found her way alon'el across the Apennines—had travelled over all Lombardy, without mo'ney-and through the flinty roads of Sa'voy/ without shoes': how she had bo‘rne it, and how she had got support'ed, she cou'ld not t'ell—but/ Go'd/ tempers the wind' (said Maria) to the shorn' lamb'.
Shorn' indeed! and to the quick, said I; and, wast thou in my own land', where I have a cottage, I would tak’e thee to it, and she'lter thee; thou shouldst eat of my own bread', and drink' of my own cup—I would be kind to thy Sylvio-in all thy we'aknesses and wan'derings I would s'eek after thee, and br’ing thee back'—when the sun went down'/ I would say my prayers', and, when I had done', thou shouldst play the evening so'ng/ upon thy pipe'; nor would the incense of
sa'crifice be worse a'ccepted, for entering heaven along with that of a bro'ken he'art.
Nature melted within me', as I uttered this'; and Maria obseʼrving (as I took out my ha’ndkerchief) that it was steeped too much already to be of u'se, would needs go wash it in the stream — And where will you droy it, Maria ? said I-I will dry it in my bo‘som, said she/it will do me good'. And is your heart still so warm, Mari'a ? said I'.
I touched upon the string' on which hung all her sor'rows she looʻked/ (with wistful disor'der)* for some time in my face'; and then' (without saying anʼy-thing) took her pi'pe and played her service to the Virgin — The string I had touch'ed/ ceased to vi brate-in a mo'ment or two', Maria returned to herself—let her pipe fall', and rose up'.
And where are you go‘ing, Maria ? said I. She said, To Moulines'—Let us go' (said I') together. Maria put her arm within mine', an'd, le'ngthening the string to let the dog follow --in that oʻrder, we entered Moulines'.
Though I hate salutations and greetings in the maréket-place, yet'/ when we got into the middle of this, I stop'ped, to take my last lo'ok/ and last farewell' of Mari'a.
Mari'a, though not tall, was/ neverthele'ss/ of the first order of fine forms'-affliction/ had touched her looks' with some'thing/ that was scarce earth'ly—st'ill she was feʼminine :
* Every illustrative or explanatory adverbial phrase will be improved, if read parenthetically.
-and/ so much was there about her of all that the heart | wish'es/ or the ey'el looks for in woʻman, th'at, could the traces be ever worn out of her brain', and those of Eli za out of miné', she should not only eat of my bread, and drink of my own cup, but, Ma'ria should lie' in my bosom', and b'e unto me, as a daugh`ter.
Adieu', poor', luck'less, ma'iden !-imbibe the o'il and wine/ which the compas'sion of a str'anger (as he journeyeth on his way') now pours into thy wounds'—the Be'ing, who has twice bruised' thee, can only bind them up/ for ever.
LIBERTY AND SLAVERY.
STERNE. Disgui'se thyself/ as thou wilt, sti'll, Sla'very! still thou art a bitter dr’aught ; and, though thoʻusands/ in all a'ges/ have been made to dr’ink of thee, thou art no less bitter/ on that acc'ount. It is th'ou LI'BERTY ! thrice sweet and gracious g'oddess (whom all in pu'blic or in private wor'ship), whose taʼste is gra'teful, and e'ver wi'll be so, till Nature her'self shall cha'nge
-no tint of words can spo't thy snowy ma’ntle, nor chymic power turn thy sce'ptre into i'ron- with thee to smi'le upon him (as he eats his cr’ust), the swain is ha'ppier than his monarch, from whose coʻurt/* thou art exil'ed Gracious H'eaven ! grant me but health (thou great Best'owerof-it), and give me but this fair go'ddess/ as my companion ; and shower do'wn thy mi'tres (if it seem good unto thy divine providence) upon those he'ads/ which are ach'ing for them.
Pursuing these id'eas, I sat down close by my ta'ble, a'nd, leaning my head upon my ha'nd, I began to figure to my'self the misseries of confine'ment. I was in a right fraʼme for it, and so I gave full scope to my imagina'tion. I was going to begin with the millions of
fellow-c'reatures, bo'rn to no inheritance butt slavery; but fi'nding
• Our general duty before a personal pronoun, as well as before proper nouns, is to take a breath and keep the voice up.
† As a general rule, when “but” means except, and immediately precedes a noun or pronoun, it virtually becomes a preposition-governing the noun or pronoun in the objective case, and always requiring to be pronounced with accentual, almost with emphatic, force.
(however affec'ting the pic'ture was) that I could not bring it near' me, and that the multitude of sad gro'ups in it, did but distra'ct me
I took a single captive, an'd/ having first shut him up in his du’ngeon, I then looked through the twi'light of his grated d'oor/ to take his pic'ture.
I beheld his body-half was'ted away with long expecta'tion and confi'nement, and fel't what kind of sickness of the he'art it is/ which arises from h'ope defer'red. Upon looking ne’arer, I saw him p'ale and fev'erish: in thirsty years, the western breeze/ had not once fan'ned his blo'od—he had seen no s'un, no mộon, in all that ti'me—no'r/ had the voice of frie'nd or ki'nsman/ breathed through his lattice.
But here my heart began to ble'ed—and I was forced to go on with ano'ther part of the portrait.
He was sitting upon the gro'und/ upon a little straw, in the farthest corner of his dun geon, which wa's/ alte'rnately/* his cha'ir and be'd: a little calendar of small sticks/ was laid at the he'ad, notched all over, with the dismal day's and ni'ghts/ he had pass'ed there—he had one of these little sticks in his h’and, and, with a rusty n'ail, he was etching another day of mi'sery/ to add to the he'ap. As I darkened the little light/ he had, he lifted up a hopeless eye towards the doo'r, the'n, cast it down-shook his h’ead, and went on with his work of afflic'tion. I heard his chains upon his leg's/ as he turned his bo'dy/ to lay his little sti'ck upon the bu'ndle—He gave a deep sig'h-I saw the iron enter into his soʻul—I burst into te'ars— (ỉ could not sustain the picture of confinement, which my fa'ncy had draw'n.)
ON SATIRICAL WIT.
Tru'st m'e, this unwary pleasantry of thine w'ill (soo'ner or la'ter) bring thee into scrapes and di'fficulties, wh'ich) no a'fterwit/ can extricate thee out-of. In these s'allies, too o'ft, I see, it ha'ppens, that the person la’ughed-at/ considers himself in the ligʻht of a person injured, with all the ri'ghts of such a situation belonging-to-him; an'd/ when thou viewest him in that light to'o, and reckonest upon his fri'ends, his fa'mily, his kind'red and all'ies, and musterest up with them the many recrui'ts/ which will list under him from a sense of common da'nger ; 'tis no extravagant a'rithmetic to sa'y, th’at/ for every ten jokes, thou hast got a hundred e'nemies ; a'nd, till thou hast gone o'n, and raised a swarm of wasps about thine e’ars, and art half stung to dea'th b'y them, thou wilt never be convi'nced
* Every significant adverb, as well as every adverbial phrase, requires a pause both before and after it.
it i's so.
I cannot suspect it in the m'an/ whom I este'em, that there is the least spu'r from spleen' or maʼlevolence of inten't in these sallies. I believe and kno'w-them/ to be truly honest and sp'ortive ; but, con'sider, that foôls cannot distinguish thi's, and that knyaves/ will not; and thou knowest not what it i's, either to provoke the oʻne, or/ make meʼrry with the ôther ; whenever they associate for mutual defe'nce, depen'd-upon-it/ they will carry on the war/ in such a man'ners aga'inst thee, my dear fri'end, as to make thee heartily sick of i't and of thy li'fe too.
Reveʼnge (from some baneful coʻrner) shall level a tale of dishon'our a't thee, which/ no i’nnocence of hea'rt or integrity of con'duct/ shall set right. The fortunes of thy hoʻuse/ shall tot'ter,—thy cha'racter (which led the wa'y to them) shall bleed on every si de-of-it—thy fa'ith/ ques'tioned—thy w'orks/ belie'd -thy wit/ forgo'tten—thy lea'rning/ trampled on. To wind up the last scene of thy tragedy, Cru'elty and Co'wardice (twin ru'ffians, hi’red and set o'n/ by ma'lice in the d’ark) shall strike toʻgether/ at all thy infi'rmities and mista'kes ;-thé bes't of u's (my fri’end) lie open ther'e ; and, trust me, wheʼn (to gratify a private a'ppetite) it is once resolved upo'n, that an in'nocent and help'less-creature shall be sa'crificed, it is an easy matter/ to pick up sti'cks/ enou'gh/ from any thic'ket where it has str'ayed, to make a fi're/ to offer it u'p-with.
* “ Cheerfulness," being the positive emphasis, requires the falling slide ; "mirth,” the negative, has the rising inflection.