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per; would my finger had been cramped he carried, and which, aided by a bright when it pulled that trigger! Why would lamp borne by a female attendant, reI not have answered his. Who goes there!' vealed also the origin of that musical and trusted at once to thee, my good St. voice, the mistress of the mansion, The George !” (patting the smoking neck of Lady of Wolfhamscote. his champing charger). “I fear I brought If the stature of Minerva, the majesty him down! I saw him reel on his saddle! of Juno, the voluptuousness of Venus, Well, what 's past cure, is past care ! ever combined in one of their enchanting The question is what to do next? the sex-Hyacinth Tracy was that one. whole country side will be beset, and The proud imperial brow,—the large here am I with an over-ridden horse and swimming eye, the red and richly an empty stomach—with a house before moulded lips, the neck and bosom that me, it is true; but what an unpromising laughed to scorn the whiteness of the lace old owl's nest! and whom doth it call and the softness of the velvet robe from lord ? Haply some cankered old Puritan which they towered, altogether presented who, grown over-rusty for the wars, e'en a tablet indeedlurks in his horrid den like Master Bun
“For Love bis lofty triumphs to eugrave." yan's Giant Despair, ready to eat up alive any ill-starred Royalist that falls into
At this moment bravery and bounty his clutches. 'Tis no matter !-as well formed the reigning expression of that go in and be hanged, as stay out and be enchanting countenance, and it is scarcely shot!”
a portual liberty to say, that it shone like A long parley ensued between the
a sun upon the chilling gloom.
The summoned menials emulated one Cavalier and the ancient domestic who held the honoured office of porter of
another in leading the stranger's charger
to stall and manger. Wolfhamscote, and whom no very gentle knocking had summoned to the wicket of the Lady Tracy welcome the wanderer
And now with a stately courtesy did the porch doors. The usual plea of lost way and life obeisance of the most courtly elegance,
to Wolfhamscote, and with a profound beset, was urged on the one hand, and the stranger ventured to take the lady's parried on the other by equally, trite hand,—then led her within one of the excuses,—the unsettled times, the vicinity of the hostile armies
, the necessity of deeply embayed windows that was ranged caution, and chiefly the absence of the along the hall, and, in low tones, with master of the mansion.
some little graceful hesitation, and a slight
blush, announced himself as Orlando Lord Suddenly the earnest and half-supplicating tones of the stranger, and the Lovel, a cornet in his majesty's service, unfavourable replies, half growl and half who having had the misfortune, while whine of the churlish janitor, were broken reconnoitring, to stumble on a vidette of upon and silenced by a voice so excessively
the rebel army, had unadvisedly fired musical, that the very echoes of the old upon the officer, who challenged him, pile might have been enamoured of its had, he feared, shot him, and was now a tones , and withal so commanding, that fugitive, till he could rejoin the king's
head quarters at Nit might have halted the two armies when
A lad for a lady's eye, it must be spurring to the combat :
confessed, was this wandering lord : "Sweet words like dropping honey she did shed, something between a Hercules and an And 'twixt the perles and robies softly brake
Antinous. A silver sound that heavenly music seemed to make."
“A sweet regard and amiable grace, “What parley are you prolonging this
Mixed with a manly sternness did appeare, inhospitable evening, Master Barnaby ?
Yet sleeping on his well-proportioned face,
And on his tender tips the downy heare What scorn are you putting upon Wolf- Did now but freshly spring and silken blossoms hamscote, that the wandering stranger
beare." and the tired horse should discover that It is no marvel then if somewhat more there is neither bower nor stable, chamber than the mere glee of recognition illumed nor stall, meat nor room, in Sir Mar- with complacency the lady's bland and maduke Tracy's homestall ?”
beautiful features as she said Hastily and obsequiously the porter “ The Lord Orlando Lovel ? not less turned round towards the speaker, and illustrious was his rank, and such methe door, instantly revolving on its hinges, thinks his name, whom at the fight of disclosed the dark attire and white hair of Edghill, Sir Marmaduke saved from the the old man streaming in the wind, and weapons of some half-dozen of his own gleaming in the wild Aare of the cresset vassals, whom the youth singly held at
bay. Relieved of them, straightway the “ Nay, my lord ! shame not the hospi. falcon flew at nobler quarry, and attacked tality of Wolf hamscote :-the hiding the Tracy himself; marry! Sir Marma. hole you ask, shall be yours, and such as duke was put to his stoccata ere he could Argus himself could not discover ;-but, disarm him.”
though Sir Marmaduke himself thun“ An officer of rank,” replied Lord dered at the porch gates, you should first Orlando, “ did certainly on the field of eat and drink!" Edghill, first save me from being buf
“ Let me be ta'en, let me be put to death, feted to death ;-and then, condescend
I am content, so thou wilt have it so!" ingly enhanced the obligation, by teaching was Orlando's laughing reply; and, imme, with his own good sword, to be printing a kiss of solemn gallantry on somewhat more cunning of fence; when Lady Tracy's hand, he led her from I yielded me his prisoner, he conducted the deep recess into the open chamber; me to his quarters; treated me cour
where, after leaving him to give some teously, and dismissed me the next day directions to the house steward, who stood without ransom : but to his name and in respectful silence at the farther end, person I was a stranger. Stand I then and listened to her mandates with the in the honoured presence of his dame ?”
most profound deference, the lady called “Even so, my lord: in these dis- for lights, and Lord Lovel ushered her jointed times old Wolf hamscote boasts from the hall. no higher inmate than its poor lonely mistress; and as for its honours-woe broad ascent, with many landings, and
They went up the great staircase, a the while, they wax but dim in Sir Mar- black carved banisters, the walls being maduke's absence !"
painted with various family chronicles in Orlando thought he perceived a slight high colours. tinge of sarcasm in the tone, and a lurk
This led them to the gallery, through ing smile of scorn in the beautiful whose windows of enormous arch the Hyacinth's face, as she concluded the
moon flooded in ; they looked just such sentence. Indeed, rumour said that the
as Keats describes, Lady Tracy had no objection to wield as much of Sir Marmaduke's awful supre- All garlanded with carven imageries
"A casement high and triple-arched there was, macy as his easy and affectionate though Or fruits, and flowers, and bunches of knot grass ; high and honourable heart disposed him And diamonded with panes of quaint device to concede.
Innumerable of stains and splendid dies, Perhaps the lady read this in Lord
As are the tiger-moth's deep damasked wings: Orlando's look, for she added, in an
And in the midst, 'mong thousand heraldries,
And twilight saints, and dim emblazonings, altered tone and with a smile of irresisti- A shielded scutcheon blushed with blood of ble fascination,
queens and kings.” “ But though Sir Marmaduke will de- In the farthest nook of this gallery, a plore his absence, and I his poor shadow door concealed behind the tapestry hang. can but little supply it, still that little ings admitted them into the enchanted shall be assayed. Leave we then these bower of this Armida of Wolf hamscote. grim arches and echoing windows for a Its sudden brilliance almost blinded Or. more cheery chamber. Our supper hour lando as he entered from the glimmering draws nigh—and if the Lord Orlando gallery. Walls, floor, and ceiling, were can patiently endure a lonely woman's mantled with gorgeous colouring. Arras, company
massy with silver and purple tinctured Young Lovel hastened to express his embroidery, arrayed the walls; the roof acknowledgments, but with some embar- was enriched with heraldic medallions, rassment, suggested the necessity of his and on the floor the many-coloured fleece remaining in seclusion till the result of of Turkish looms spread its downy subhis demelè should be ascertained.
stance. A settee, with coverlid and canopy “ The avenger of blood is behind me,” of red brocade, a huge Venetian mirror with he said, “and, though I have hitherto fowered frame, a mighty manteltree of escaped, doubtless the pursuers are now glossy oak, lavish in sculptures, in whose hot upon my traces. I am certain it was centre was emblazoned the great shield of an officer of rank whom I shot,-certain Tracy; a broad table covered with the too that he fell. Since then, beautiful finest white damask and spread with vesand gracious lady, you deign to shelter a sels whose precious material was excelled Royalist in the mansion of a Parlia- by their exquisite workmanship, containmentarian, he will be contented with the ing the most luxurious viands-were hiding hole and solitude till better fortune displayed to the fullest advantage by tall advances him to the bower and the society golden candlesticks of antique mould, of the Lady Tracy.”
bronze lamps gleaming with perfumed oil, When gladness comes my heart to cheer, and a fire of fragrant woods, which irra
Though brief and fleeting fast,
I would not weep, if every fear diated the room.
Could wash away the past ! Never did damsel of Arabian lore press
Oh, senseless mortals! why embrace the fortunate merchant who had attracted
The woes you cannot cure, her regard in the Bezestein with such And spurn the joy whose transient smile courteous hospitality as did the Lady of
May nerve you to endure !” Wolf hamscote her somewhat bewildered A heavy trampling of horse in the guest. She carved to him the daintiest avenue, thundering knocks at the great viands, she poured for him the most porch doors, succeeded by clamorous luscious wines, and the two handmaidens voices, and a loud harsh jangling of the who stood behind her purple chair manor bell, or storm-clock as it was called, smiled on each other as they watched the caused the damsel to stint in her song, looks that accompanied these hospitable and the lady to blench in her cheer. courtesies.
Lord Lovel started to his feet; he The Lord Orlando was dazzled, was spoke not, but Lady Tracy instantly confounded, and the lady laughed at his dispatched her maidens to inquire the embarrassment. His dishevelled attire, cause of the tumult, and, the moment the whose pointed Vandyke lace, and broi- door closed upon them, she caught up a dered buff doublet, and burnished cuirass lamp—“Yes, yes !” she ejaculated hurand scarlet sword-belt, seemed little riedly, “they are at hand !—you were adapted to a lady's banquet, added a wise in your precaution; and I was a fool charm to the uncommon beauty of his to deem it a boyish panic! we have not a face and figure, and the ludicrous mix- moment to lose,-follow me!" ture of boyish bashfulness and natural “ But your servants, lady! the old gallantry with which he accepted the Lady garrulous porter too”Hyacinth's attentions, betrayed itself in a “ Fear not them! they who eat the
bread of Wolfhamscote will never betray “Now would one think,” said the lady, him who shelters in the shadow of his old “that you were Sir Guyonard, I the walls ;-or at the worst, I shall say you Lady Phædria, whom Master Edmund are fled by a private door, and have long Spenser so ungallantly paints. But fear ago left the mansion. Follow me! follow not, my Lord, I shall not pass the bonds me quickly—and they must be wizards of modest merrimake."
indeed that find you out !” “ And if you did, lady fair,” answered Thus speaking, she pressed a carved Lovel, taking heart of grace, “ I should acanthus in the mantelpiece, and a slight not have the power
click, as of a spring, was heard ;-she • Such dalliance to despise and folly to forsake;' and Orlando was aware of a narrow aper
then pushed aside the adjoining tapestry, but, in sooth, I cannot answer your affa
ture through which he could barely inbility as I ought; censure me not, I
troduce his comely person. Hyacinth beseech you, if my heart is gloomy when
replaced the tapestry and closed the orifice my hand is red !"
“Nay, my Lord, I blame you not I! fain in the wall, then led the way along a would í charm away those melancholy last she turned towards Lovel, and held
narrow passage to some distance. At thoughts from your bosom, and that cloud the lamp over a steep winding stair. from your brow! Ah, you smile ! Joy's Orlando thought they would never have ensign becomes that temple so well, -oh, reached the bottom, and when they did, never let despondence advance his black the tumult, and the trampling, and the flag there again! A song, Isaura! pursued the lovely dame; and the maiden, close at hand, that a momentary pang of
voices, and the bell-ringing, seemed so at her word, produced from a red Japan suspicion thrilled his nerves and sickened cabinet, a lute of satin wood; and accom
his heart. panied its chords with her voice; while, countenance betrayed him, for the Lady
Apparently his ingenuous leaning one round white arm of exquisite Hyacinth answered his look with a mould on her flushing cheek, and resting the other hand on the table, the Lady of glance and accent of consummate scorn.
“ Fame speaks the Lord Orlando Lovel Wolf hamscote beat time with those
courteous as well as gallant, and brave taper fingers all ablaze with coloured jewels.
as he is open ;- but this night would go
far to contradict her !-a rash deed, a “No beam so bright as that which breaks
headlong flight, a hasty confidence, an Between two stormy clouds; So present pleasure charms us most
unjust suspicion,-But oh !” she conWhen doubt the future shrouds.
tinued, correcting her speech and soften
ing her tone, “ I am harsh and wrong ! window, and perceived a huge bed in a Misfortune mars manhood; and the lion recess, thickly curtained and warmly in the field would be the deer in stone clothed: and there was a table well garwalls, Once more, doubt not, my lord ! nished with viands; and there was also a your pursuers are now cooling their heels long luxurious robe of sables thrown over over head; we are passing below thé the antiquely.carved chair ; and on a castle yard; and I'll warrant old Barnaby stool by the bed there was a suit of which not to admit a mother's son of them till Í he could perceive that the lace was of the come to the wicket; though why the costliest, the linen the finest, and the cloth blockheads should be swinging yonder and silk of the softest and richest. When hideous bell, as if they would break the he had ascertained as much as he could clapper or ding down the belfry tower, I respecting the interior of his asylum, cannot guess. On, on!”
Orlando softly pushed open a casement The passage proceeded, with many in the arched and dingy latticed window. turns and windings, for some space, till Leaning out, he perceived through the they reached a narrow door, ribbed with branches of a colossal yew tree the river oak and banded with iron; formidable as rolling below its wide and sounding appeared this barricade, it opened noise- waters. The yew tree itself nearly lessly at the slightest touch of Hyacinth's blocked up the window, and buffeted the initiated finger,—and a toilsome staircase panes wit its slowly tossing foliage. conducted them to a considerable height On looking farther, he discovered that above their previous course, and termi- he was more than a furlong from the nated in a broad flagged landing, which house of Wolf hamscote, whose moonLady Tracy allowed the fugitive no time silvered vanes and glistening chimneys to examine, ere, placing her light on the rose beyond a grove of linden trees, while pavement, she pushed open a large door, the garden with its terraces and fountains and, beckoning Orlando, she said and parterres lay between.
“ Here must be your abode, Lord Ivy and a thousand lovely parasites Lovel, for to-night at least ! and longer luxuriantly overlaid the buttresses and if your safety is concerned. It has often walls of the building, which was now been used for a similar necessity afore- become Lord Lovel's temporary abode. time ;-I see Bright has done my bidding It was in fact an old banquet-house, -he is the only one at Wolf hamscote, which had been cautiously shunned ever beside Sir Marmaduke and myself, who since a former knight of Wolfhamscote knows this lair, for traditional custom if in a paroxysm of jealousy, had flung his not obligation limits that knowledge to wife over the window-sill into the river three of the family. Forgive loneliness below. The place was cursed ! and gloom, and you will find nought else The Tracys of subsequent times had
Adieu! I must win my way encouraged the superstitious reports so back, with what speed I may, or the old likely to ensure the privacy of the tower, chimneys of Wolfhamscote will certainly which some of them had used for astrofall down upon yonder clamouring knaves. logical pursuits; some as the secret renFarewell !_keep the lamplight as much dezvous for the conspiracies so frequently as possible from the window : you shall agitated in the last Tudor's reign ; and soon hear your fate :—and, hark ye! tell others, as a place of refuge so necessary me when I return, how ye like the seclu- in consequence of those conspiracies. sion you so much coveted in the Lady's It was indeed admirably adapted to Bower !"
the purpose; the door, which led by And with a silver laugh the Lady of broad steps from the garden, was bricked Wolf hamscote vanished, leaving Orlando up on a pretence of the dangerous dilapito make what he could of a high vaulted dation of the banquet-house, and the room, with one tall window of Gothic escalier derobè was made with the privity mould, through whose shrub - muffled of only two workmen, beside the then panes the moonlight shimmered in broken Lord of Wolfhamscote, and they were strains, imperfectly shewing the walls sworn most solemnly to secresy. painted with some old legends, more Not the keenest emissary, therefore, of remarkable for the grim looks of their the army or of the bench, would have heroes, and the gaudy quaintness of their dreamed of searching The Haunted Banraiment, than for any interest they quet-house, a place so long supposed might be likely to produce in the luckless abandoned to the owl and the jackdaw, visitor,
that it had acquired the title of Ghost He brought the lamp into the room, Castle ; and the great window which had but in such a way as to screen it from the illuminated so many a summer festival
Alas ! how bitter to bemoan
there, was now so curtained by its shrubby I think I scarce should disapprove treillage, and canopied by the yew tree,
The dullness of this lonely hour.
But I can only feel and moan that the Lady Hyacinth had apparently
That I am weary and-alone. little need for her caution respecting the
If she were bright, I'd say that light lamplight.
Emblazing yonder window fair Meanwhile the most sedulous attention Gave not to me one glance of glee, had been imperceptibly to the world)
With her soft sunshine to compare. devoted to the internal arrangement of
But I can only feel and moan
That I am gloomy and alone. Ghost Castle ; and Lord Lovel perceived,
If dark, as Cleopatra's die; on awaking the next morning, by as much
The Lady Night herself, I'd swear, sunshine as could creep in through the Had no such planet, as the eye disguised window, a mighty fair and That flashed beneath her jetty hair.
But I can only feel and moan pleasant apartment, which wanted nothing
That I am joyless and alone. but a good blazing fire to render it a most
If blithe her cheer-I'd copy now unobjectionable-prison.
Each lively look, each laughing tone, No article requisite to the most fas- How welcome to a breast and brow tidious toilet of the period was wanting ;
That feel no gladness of their own! and when Lord Orlando, in compliment
That I am dark some and alone. to his hostess' kind cares, had indued the
If gravity her features ruled, sumptuous change of raiment assigned to
I too would patiently be grave, his wear, the broad surface of an ebony- And by her calm remembrance schooled, framed mirror convinced him how well a Endure the grief I cannot brave. carnation-coloured scarf swept athwart a
Alas! I only feel and moan
That I am drooping and alone. doublet of plum-coloured velvet, and with venial vanity he smiled as his large white Noon arrived, and passed by; Lord hand pushed aside the glossy curls from a Lovel chafed his cramped limbs. Evenforehead broad and bright as Apollo's. ing's shadows lengthened; Lord Lovel
But the smile soon vanished, and a sigh paced to and fro for warmth, and even succeeded. His seemed a singularly way- leaped over the table, loaded with good ward fate. He had joined the royal cheer, like the worshippers of Baal on standard--a lively, sanguine, enterprising their idol's altar. youth of some twenty years—had rank Night came down, and gloom and disand wealth in possession, and fame and quiet in her train. The wind arose, the honour in prospect; with his lady-love rain fell, the angry river roared; and the yet to choose, and with a right to be fas- yew tree, like some monitory spectre, tidious in his choice,-and all this to be shook his monstrous head at the window. overclouded (perhaps for ever) by this The noble fugitive muffled his limbs in unhappy adventure!
the robe of sables, and, for very weariness, “ Ah Orlando, Orlando ! what an evil seated himself in the arched recess that trap hast thou chanced upon! Here art formed a kind of window-seat. thou fairly caught; and never poor mouse Thus situated, Lovel might have said looked so silly in its trap! What is worst with Gawain Douglas, “ I saw the moon of all, thou mayest not get out, even if shed through the window her twinkling thou couldest. Such a tumult as that at glances and wintry light. I heard the yonder gates ! I think I feel the cold iron horned bird, the night owl, shrieking
my throat even now! The lady too,- horribly, with crooked bill, from her methought she was wondrous fair,-hea
I heard the wild geese, with ven grant she be honest too! She seemed screaming cries, fly over the city, through to affect me marvellously” (another look the silent night. I heard the jackdaws of youthful complacence at the mirror). cackle on the roof of the house; the “Well, I have none else to trust to in cranes prognosticating tempest, in a firm this den ; and she seems to have forgotten phalanx, pierced the air with voice sound
ing like a trumpet ; the kite, perched on Some small diversion from his ennui
an old tree fast by my chamber, cried the young Lord Orlando derived from lamentably.” the substantial viands on which he broke But far more appalling to Orlando his fast; and, as youthful digestion is than the cries of owls, geese, kites, cranes, generally a faithful handmaid to appe- and jackdaws (which, like Saint Anthotite, we may conclude he passed some ny's demons, seem to have haunted the hours in tolerable tranquillity, humming, night-hours of the classic Prelate of at intervals, snatches of these stanzas :- Dunkeld) was the protracted absence of Oh! had I but a ladye-love,
the Lady of Wolfhamscote. Whose image cheered my prison-tower,
The night wore late; the very last