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THE RIVAL POPES.

AN EPIGRAM.

“ A. D. 1324, the two contending Popes, John and Nicholas, held separate councils. John and his Bishops, at Arignon, anathematized Nicholas the Fifth as a heretic, because he held that our Lord did not possess property. Nicholas, on the other hand, cursed John as a heretic for affirming that Christ did possess property.-Baxter's Church History, p. 425."

In days of yore two popes, as records say,
Fiercely contended for pontific sway;
Pope Nicholas, at Rome, denounced Pope John,
Who cursed Pope Nicholas at Avignon ;
Each damned the other as an imp of evil

,
And piously consigned him to the devil;
Satan, who watched the contest, nothing loth,
Came at their call and kindly took them both.

J. S.

BELFAST.

CONSOLATION.

A LEAF FROM THE PHILOSOPHY OF VOLTAIRE,

There lived, some time gone by, in modern France

Whose sunny clime the human bosom warms;
The land of love, and bravery and romance-

A youthful dame of most transcendent charms,
Who, on a fatal day, had the mischance

To have her husband wrested from her arms
By the rude hand of death! a blooming youth,
Whose looks were love, his soul's best treasure, truth!

Who can describe her grief; it passed all thought!

Handsome, and young, and wedded scarce ten days ;
A handsome husband, too, who only sought

To love, and please, and humour all her ways ;
Who just the day before he died, had bought

A phaeton for her, drawn by two smart bays.
O married wives ! imagine if you can,
Her grief at having lost so dear a man.

Oft would she sit, and o'er his portrait dream

For hours together heaving heavy sighs ;
Then she would start, and wring her hands, and scream,

Rending the very heavens with her cries,
Till she sank down exhausted, and did seem

As dead ; saving, that from her half-closed eyes,
The tears welled copiously, you could not trace
One sign of life on her pale marble face.

And sometimes by the full moon's silver light,

She'd wander on the banks of the Garonne ;
Where he and she, on many a summer's night,

Had fondly wandered, hand in hand alone,
Ere their loves met this rude and sudden blight.

And sometimes she would stand and gaze upon
Her phaeton, or her husband's favourite horse;
But this invariably made her worse.

It chanced that a philosopher lived near,

Whom for the present, Timon we shall name ;
A man who to himself was very dear,

And wished, to others that he were the same.
Talent he thought he had ; although we fear

You'll scarcely find him on the lists of fame-
A chance which might have risen from neglect-
Merit but seldom meets with due respect !

But he was good and kind—and that is much !

And thought it was his duty, as a sage,
To search for arguments, if any such

Could be discovered in the books, to 'suage
The lady's grief. And so he took his crutch,

(For he was lame) and sought her house. A page,
In deepest mourning, slowly led the way
To the boudoir, where the sad lady lay.

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“ Perhaps you do not recollect the story

Of Mary, the unhappy Scottish queen ?
She had a husband too, her heart's sole glory,

Handsome and rich, and liberal too, I ween.
Wedded they had not been for long-not more, I

Believe, than twelve months-at the most fifteen,
He was blown up by secreted gunpowder-

Such an explosion! ne'er was heard a louder!”
Vol. IV.

N

The lady owned that it was very sad,

But her own husband's loss it was she wept ; “She had a lover, an Italian lad,

famed musician, whom she near her kept, From morn to night, through good report and bad.

One evening some disguised assassins slipped Into the room where he sat with her Grace, And butchered him before her very face !"

The lady wept, but for her husband still.

“ Her kingdom once she was obliged to fly, Her people said that she had governed ill;

And though she did by no means wish to die, They threatened, if they caught her, they would kill.

On England's queen she thought she could rely,
And prayed her to stand by her in her need.
She took her in--and then took off her head!"

The lady's burning tears still flowed amain,

But 'twas not for poor Mary that she cried. Though all the queens in Europe had been slain,

Would that have brought her husband to her side ? Could that recall the dead to life again,

Or give her lover to the sorrowing bride ? The sage perceived that “ Mary” would not do, And so he thought he'd try another clew.

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“ There was a Persian princess once, who brought

A favoured lover into her boudoir : Her father entered unawares, and sought

To slay the youth ; but he seized up a bar Of iron that lay near, with which he fought

Until the father fell—a ghastly scar Upon his brow. The princess swooned for fear; The youth was taken up by the Vizier,

“ And hanged next day before her very face.

She died for grief! You've never been at Nice ? No matter ! 'tis a very pretty place,

And once contained a beauty named Berbice, Who had a charming husband named Alsace

A very handsome man, who came from Greece. These two went out one evening after tea, To take a sail upon the calm blue sea.

“ The moon—the rich Italian moon-shone bright,

Tinging the landscape with her mellow beams. The wakened waters caught the silver light,

And threw it back in broken fitful gleams. They sat and gazed upon the silent night,

And hand in hand indulged in soothing dreams Of love. Row gently, gently, gondolier, The slightest sound is grating to the ear.

“ And soon the barrier of the bay was passed,

And o'er the bosom of the deep they glide. The distant white-walled town receded fast,

When a tall ship they suddenly descriedA sable pennant streaming at her mast.

• Lie to your oars, my men !' Alsatio cried ; • 'Tis the black corsair! speed, make for the shore ! A flash was seen, a bullet whistled o'er

“ Their heads. The gondoliers refused to row,

Sitting in terror motionless and still ;
And the dark giant ship bore down with slow

But steady course upon her prey, until
She threw her grappling irons o'er their prow.

The corsair crew leap down in haste, and fill
The barge. Alsatio fought and fell. Berbice
Was taken prisoner. Farewell, white-walled Nice!

“ Onward the corsair sailed o'er silent seas,

And passed by moonlight Malta's ancient towers, And skirted round the lovely Chersonese,

Catching the perfume of its olive bowers, Whose fragrance filled the gentle summer breeze.

And then they came to Athens, where the Giaours Made some additions to their human cargo, Heedless, alike, of firman and embargo.

“ And onward still, they sailed both night and day ;

And floated o'er the Hellespont's rude waves, And coasted up the sea of Marmora,

And reached the rapid Bosphorus, which laves The Turkish shore, and anchored in the bay

Of the famed Porte—the noted mart of slaves.The cargo here were driven in a string

Up to the town, and sold for what they'd bring.

“ The Sultan's eunuch purchased poor Berbice,

And led her off to the seraglio straight.
Poor thing! if aught her misery could increase,

'Twas being destined to so dire a fate!
But this was not the worst ;-she would not cease

Her tears, or her deep, dismal sighs, abate ; Although-and few dare contradict his fiatThe Sultan frowned and told her to be quiet.

“ But still she sighed and wept, and wept and sighed,

Till his sublimity got in a passion,
And ordered two black mutes to have her tied

Into a sack-such is the Eastern fashion-
And thrown headlong in the angry tide.

The two black demons showed her no compassion, But sewed her up, and threw her with a splash. In where the Bosphorean waters dash.

“I will not talk to you of Eloise,

Or of her love for Abelard the sage ;
But turn your thoughts a moment, if you please,

To poor Jane Gray, who, at the tender age
Of sixteen summers, had a"- -“ Cease, ( cease !"

The lady cried—“my grief you'll ne'er assuage ;It lies too deeply rooted at the core Of my sad heart—I'll ne'er know gladness more.

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