Imágenes de páginas
[graphic][subsumed][merged small]

is the pretty Tower of Belem, from which an | and again on its return. The Tower of Belem over-zealous sergeant fired those shots at the was built on an islet, but the rising of the rivNiagara, which for a moment caused the na-er-bank has left it a considerable distance from tional Eagle to ruff his feathers. A single shell the water's edge. would have demolished the fort, but at the Nothing, however, in or about Lisbon will same time would have destroyed a beautiful so much excite the astonishment and admirarelic of the art of three hundred and fifty years tion of strangers as the great arch of the aqueago. Its guns are as harmless for offensive as duct of Agoastiores, which supplies the city its walls are powerless for defensive purposes. with water brought ten miles from the village It was once used as a prison for female offend- of Bellas. This marvelous creation of man ers against the state, but is now merely a sta- ranks higher as a wonder of the world than the tion from which the sunset gun, and signals Colossus of Rhodes or the Pharos of Alexanfor vessels to heave to for the health-officer's dria. The aqueduct is partly underground; visit, are fired. Its battery does saluting serv- and modern science would have conducted it ice, with half a dozen others, on all these royal so all the way, but the architects of Joao V. and religions festivals which require the burn- carried it across the valley of the Alcantara, in ing of powder, that most grateful incense to the suburb of that name, over a series of thirty Portuguese and Spanish dignitaries. Guns arches, the largest of which, at the point of have to be fired whenever the King or any of lowest depression of the dry bed of the streamthe royal family embark or disembark, on the let, is two hundred and sixty-four feet high, anniversaries of their births, baptism, marriage, and has a width from pier to pier of one hunand death ; and when a new heir appears the dred and seven. Its symmetry and simplicity, salutes are repeated day after day according to at the first view, disappoint the spectator, who the caprice of the moment. The Cortes, in an does not 'fully realize the immensity of the ebullition of revolutionary fervor, declared that work until he compares it with surrounding sovereignty resided in the people, and enacted heights, and, standing directly beneath it, folthat the title of Majesty should be applied to lows its piers upward until they lose themselves their own collective body, at the same time re- in the narrow line of stone overhead. The quiring the King to swear himself as the first corridor is only five feet wide, and is traversed citizen of the kingdom; hence their assembling by three channels of thirteen inches each, of and dissolution have likewise to be saluted; but which two are ever running, and the third used the custom appears most absurd, when all the only when the others are being cleaned or remen-of-war and forts fire salvos on the day of paired. The water is poured into an immense Corpus Christi as the Host is taken from the covered reservoir, whence it is conducted to the church for its procession through the streets, several public chafariz or fountains. A familiar experiment in acoustics may be performed mer, as the silvery morning mists curtained these by whispering close to one of the abutments mountain barriers, or as the cloud-shadows of the great arch in a tone too low to be heard moved along them, or as the storm came sweepby a by-stander, but perfectly intelligible to a ing over them, they were very beautiful and third person whose ear presses the opposite abut- grand; and hardly less so when winter draped ment, more than a hundred feet distant, and them in mantles of snow. Sometimes in the even a more interesting cataphonic effect is ob- autumn the dried leaves and woods would ignite, served by standing directly beneath the centre and for weeks the bright chain of the “fire in of the arch and beginning to speak aloud, each the mountains," circling around peak, knoll, and word will be repeated distinctly four several precipice, was a splendid spectacle as seen times, in different tones as the voice is reflected through the black night. from side to side, until it is lost nearly three A village far removed from the great marts hundred feet above. Guides may be obtained of commerce and thoroughfares has but little at the Deposito das Agoastiores, who, for a cru- to disturb its quiet. Often through the whole zado, will take the visitor as far as he wishes length of our principal street not a moving thing to walk inside the corridor, and also upon the was to be seen. A few loungers were usually top of the aqueduct over the great arch, which to be found about the corners, whittling the has been closed as a highway on account of the empty boxes which served them as seats; and temptation it offered to the commission of sui- a cluster of village politicians at times oscillated cides and murders, at one time so alarmingly on the hinder legs of chairs at the tavern door, frequent that a fresh victim was looked for ev- discussing the affairs of the nation. If a travery morning on the rocky bottom of the valley. eling horseman happened to arrive he was keenly

Lisbon is being rapidly brought within com- scanned, and his name, residence, and destinamunication with other portions of the continent. tion carefully searched out. In the summer A line of French steamers coasts around the season tourists came along, regaling their city peninsula from Brest to Marseilles, and makes eyes amidst our finc scenery, and were treated weekly stoppages going and returning. Rail- with no little deference and hospitality. Great roads are being projected all over the king- droves of horned cattle from the counties beyond dom, and connects its interior with the capital. us, on their way to distant markets, also not unAn hour's ride, after ferrying across the river, frequently relieved the monotony, some inquiswhich widens to four miles at the upper end of itive soul always calling out, “Whose drove is the city, carries you to Setúbal (Anglicè, St. that ? How many have you in your drove ?" Ubes, famous for salt), a city so old, say its If the stupid and perverse drove “broke” in the admirers, that it derives its name from Tubal street and got into higgledy-piggledy, running Cain. It stands on the shore of a lagoon, cov- in the wrong direction and in all directions, it ering the site of the Roman town of Cedobriga, was most inspiriting to behold. where lights were seen one night by a sentinel No railroad with its shriek and clatter, no on a neighboring height to wave to and fro and steamboat disgorging impatient throngs, no rumthen disappear. Coins and pieces of tesselated bling omnibuses or noisy, insolent cabmen, no pavement reward the patient seeker after relics, bustle and din of trade invaded our quiet. The who is content to dig an hour or two among only link connecting us with the rest of mankind the sands at low-tide. The lines of Torres was a tri-weekly mail stage-a long, ponderous, Vedras, by which Wellington defended Lisbon yellow wagon. The body sat low on the axles, against the French in 1810, are only a pleas- as a preventive against upsets, and the driver's ant drive from the city.

seat inside. Slowly and with great toil it made If the traveler examines attentively all the its way over the long, precipitous hills, over the objects and places of interest which have here great boulders and ridges of limestone which obbeen cursorily enumerated, and the many oth- structed the ill-made and dangerous roads. As ers of scarcely less attraction, with which this it was the custom to condemn intractable horses city is so full, he will find occupation for many to stage service, there were sometimes terrible weeks, and will depart well satisfied with the accidents—the desperate beasts, taking fright manner in which he has employed his time, on some hill-top and dashing like so many fuand quite disposed to agree with the boast of ries, would drag the pitching vehicle down the its citizens, that

long descent and at last hurl it bottom upward “Quem nao tem visto Lisboa,

on the rocks, a mass of rubbish, maiming the Nao tem visto villa boa."

passengers, and perhaps killing the driver. Some

of these perils of stage-travel were the theme of HIGH DAYS IN A VIRGINIAN

oft-repeated narrative to intensely interested

and dismayed young auditors in the nursery, or VILLAGE.

around the winter evening's fire. The difficulUR village was ensconced among the Vir- ties of communication made every where else

ginia mountains, and the epoch of which seem very far from us, and some people nowawe now write was considerably over a third of a days would laugh at our ideas of distances. For century ago. The Blue Ridge on the one side, instance, I remember that when one of our viland the Alleghanies on the other, seemed to lagers was on one occasion about setting off for shut us out from all the world. In the sum- Alabama, he went around from house to house,



with great solemnity and tenderness telling every comfortable leather helmets with horse-tail pendbody farewell.

ants, and glittering swords, dashed through But the stirring times for our village were scampering crowds on sleek, fat, prancing certain public days of annual occurrence when steeds. Drums rattled, fifes shrieked, captains the country people flocked in, filling the tavern and subordinates roared “Fall into ranks!" and crowding the street. "Court days" were “Dress by the right !” “Mark time!" with a seasons of general convocation. With few oc- dignity and fervor reflecting upon them and casions for personal intercourse, the people from their county the highest credit. Then appeared different sections availed themselves of these op- in all his majesty the Colonel, with plumed portunities for settling up business matters. chapeau, the observed of all observers, a noble Then customers were dunned,' bills paid, the pub- looking man, said to resemble the great Washlic crier sold worthless horses with high eulogi- ington; there, too, was the stirring, lively, arums on their matchless qualities, and the sheriff dent adjutant; and the spruce young surgeon, brought down his ruthless hammer on the house-casting furtive glances at the pretty faces and hold effects of some poor unfortunate who had bright eyes in those upper windows. failed to make both ends meet, while his busy “Forward, march !" at last echoes along the deputy called the names of tardy jurors or wit- line, and our warriors defile through the village nesses three times over from the court-house and move off to the parade-ground on a neighsteps; farmers poured doleful plaints into each boring bill. Let us review them. John Falother's cars over backward seasons, droughts, staff

, what a regiment! Sixteen of the sixty short crops, and low prices, while family affairs troopers in the full panoply of horse-tail helmets and gossip in general were not neglected. Rich and bullet buttons, the remainder arrayed each were the stores of news carried at the close of as seemed best in his own eyes. Horses jogging such days to country homes. Oft were the ref- along as if going to church, horses standing on erences for weeks afterward to what the good their hind legs, horses trotting sidewise, horses man had “ heard at court."

with their heads where their tails should have “ Election-day,” however, was one of our high been, horses incontinently charging on appledays. All the voters of the county then assem- women and cake tables. The infantry perform bled, and great was the bustle and the throng. fewer evolutions, but they are fit match for the Candidates for Congress and the Legislature, troopers. Here is a uniform (sic!) coat with in their best Sunday clothes, were conspicuous short waist and long, narrow skirts that may be shaking hands with young and old, inquiring a relic of historic Yorktown; here is another of about the good-wife and children, hoping all scarlet, probably captured from some unlucky were well. On the hustings, too, they stood in Britisher at the same eventful locality; and imposing array, pouring out their well-conned there is a jaunty one fresh from a Northern city speeches--some with stammering tongue, oth- tailor. Here are all varieties of “citizens" ers facetious and humorous, making the sober costume; black coats, blue coats, green coats, farmers shake their sides over happy hits and linsey-woolsey coats, gingham coats, no coats, oft-told jokes, others polished, classical, elo- round jackets, and hunting shorts. Here are shot quent; for some of our orators were men whose guns, rifles, old muskets, rusty swords, bludsplendid declamation thrilled the councils of the geons, pea-sticks, and no sticks. Some are keepnation. Eager were the eyes turned upon cach ing step, some running to catch up; talking, voter, as, according to the custom there, the laughing, playing tricks, and eating gingersheriff grasped his hand, called aloud his name, cakes. and demanded, “Whom do you vote for ?” Once on the neighboring hill-our Champs de And when at last the setting sun gave the signal Mars--our regiment'“ spreads itself.” Its mafor closing the polls, and the result was an- næuvres are miscellaneous and original, not to nounced, great was the joy, and great the dis- say impromptu. For a while it stands at rest, appointment too. Long and deep were the po- “grand, gloomy, and peculiar.” Some tired of tations of the victors; long and deep were the standing lie down on the grass ; some achieve potations of the vanquished.

various practical jokes. They march, they counBut “General Muster" was the day of days. ter-march ; they form hollow squares that are For us young folk, at least, it was first in the not at all square; the lively adjutant gallops calendar. Then from early dawn the crowds and vociferates in intense excitement; the troopbegan to gather-pouring in from every road ers scour the hill-side and parts adjacent with a and by-way, from farm-house and secluded desperation and expenditure of horse-flesh and mountain valley. The court-house sidewalk and horse-perspiration worthy of the highest admirathe public corners were the property for the time tion. What prodigies of valor would such sol. being of thrifty country dames, whose tables, diers not perform had they only the chance ! were laden with small-beer, apples, chestnuts, Our regiment having displayed its powers and and piles of ginger-cakes-particularly aggrava- prowess to the satisfaction of the admiring public ting to penniless urchins-round ones a cent and its own, wound up the eventful day by an apiece, square ones, artistically embossed, four extemporaneous charge on the eake-stands and cents. Horse cakes were not yet introduced. on the taverns too. Some of the heroes not

But the soldiers. What an array! Troopers having exhausted their valor, undertook indiwith stub-tailed coats profusely buttoned, un- vidual adventures, or what is popularly known

As wc

as “on their own hook," the consequence of glories. Our village at this time, so far as my which were many black eyes and bloody noses. memory serves me, could boast but one fourFrom the effects of the various “charges” not a wheeled carriage; and this was brought into few found it difficult to mount their horses when requisition to transport the young ladies from the time came for turning their faces homeward, their homes to the ball. One or more of the or to sit erect in their saddles. Wild whoops and managers” took the houses seriatim, bringing hurrahs disturbed our usually quiet village long from each its precious contribution to the aggreafter nightfall. Not a few of the sturdy coun- gate female loveliness of the occasion. trymen reached their mountain homes through boys stood at the village tavern-door, and saw no small perils, and not a little the worse for one after another of these carriage-loads drive General Muster Day."

up, and youth and beauty in all its charms Another of our village high days was the 22d gracefully and gallantly handed from the steps of February, the birth-day of Washington, for and tripping merrily into the scene of festivity, we were a patriotic people. How it was that it seemed almost too much bliss for mortals. the Fourth of July was not equally esteemed I The reader must bear in mind that in those can not explain, but such was the fact. On one primitive times ladies did not postpone their apof the beautiful hills overlooking the village was pearance in the ball-room till from ten o'clock an institution of learning which had done much P.M. to midnight; they went before dark, and toward diffusing the intelligence of which we could, of course, be seen and admired by all were no little proud, and which had enabled us curious spectators. When the famous black fidto furnish men of renown for both Church and dler at length struck up an old “ Virginia Reel,” State. Washington's birthday was always the the gayety set in in good earnest, and many a occasion of a grand celebration. Orations were blooming belle and manly beau, as they tripped delivered, our cannon was fired—especially the together “the light fantastic toe,” wished in "butt," the remains of an exploded iron cannon their hearts that the 22d of February would -the best music we could command discoursed come every month in the year. its enlivening strains, country people came in to But it must not be supposed that our village gaze and admire, and the young maidens mus- was given up to "the pomps and vanities of the tered in strength, their rich mountain complex- world.” On the contrary, we were rather unions set off to the best advantage by the latest commonly religious. llence I must not fail to city fashions. The village belles were accus- mention among our high days the meetings of tomed to befriend their respective college favor- Presbytery and Synod—for our population was ites by making for them ribbon rosettes, with chiefly of Scotch-Irish descent, and consequentlong streamers, the society badges, blue for the ly Presbyterian--Synod did not come except after one, white for the other. Fastened to the la- intervals of some years; but when it did, it was pel they decidedly added to the effectiveness of worth while to be there. The writer of this was a young gentleman's presence.

not much of a judge of the preaching in those With these preliininaries, if the 22d happened days; but of the eating he felt himself authorto be a fair, bright day, not always to be reck- ized to speak in terms of the most unqualified oned upon in February, we were sure of a good approbation. “The big pot was put in the littime. At the appointed hour the societies tle one." Every house was filled with guests, formed in column, two abreast, and marched on the principle of the largest hospitality. Minfrom the classic halls on College Hill to the isters, laymen, and ladies were alike welcome; court-house in the midst of the town. The and they came from every part of the Stateband by which they were preceded usually com- from hundreds of miles away. Great were the prised the very modest allowance of two flutes, crowds. The old church was too small to conand nothing else, played by amateurs. But tain them; and when Sunday came, “the great that procession, that music, those blue-and-white day of the feast," the throng surpassed all destreamers flying in the mountain breezes, the scription. And very good times these were ; patriotic orations, the throng of bright faces, many the pleasant acquaintances formed, many and the rounds of rapturous applause, if ever the genial hours passed, many the fine serhuman glory had reached its culminating point, mons, many the pious impressions—to last, it it seemed to us youngsters that this must be it. was to be hoped, forever. It was worth going It has fallen to my lot since to see Kossuth's re- a very long way to participate in these good ception into New York, and Queen Victoria's things. reception into Edinburgh, with the review of But the times of which I write are long since 80,000 troops by the Emperor and Empress of passed. Our mountain village has so changed France, with numerous other pageants; but these that we of the by-gone days returning there were tame and small affairs compared with that would hardly know it. Modern fashions and 22d of February turn-out, as I used to see it in modern airs have usurped the place of the forour mountain village. This grand gala occa- mer simplicity. But it is questionable whether sion usually wound up with a ball, which was, any advance has been made on the real enjoyof course, in harmony with the splendors of the ment of life which attended those unsophisticated day-in fact, the very blossom and flower of its / "high days" of "auld lang syne.”

VOL. XXXIII.-No. 194.-N

"Are you

[ocr errors]



A R M A D A L E.

A lady, Sir?” he inquired.

looking for a lady?” CHAPTER II.

“I am looking,” said Midwinter simply, "for my wife.”

“Married, Sir !” exclaimed Mr. Bashwood. TOTICING Mr. Bashwood's confusion (after “Married since I last had the pleasure of seeing

a moment's glance at the change in his you! Might I take the liberty of asking—?" personal appearance), Midwinter spoke first. Midwinter's eyes dropped uneasily to the

“I see I have surprised you,” he said. “You ground. were looking, I suppose, for somebody else ? “You knew the lady in former times," he Have you heard from Allan ? Is he on his way said. “I have married Miss Gwilt.” home again already ?".

The steward started back as he might have The inquiry about Allan, though it would nat- started back from a loaded pistol leveled at his urally have suggested itself to any one in Mid- head. His eyes glared as if he had suddenly winter's position at that moment, added to Mr. lost his senses, and the nervous trembling to Bashwood's confusion. Not knowing how else which he was subject shook him from head to to extricate himself from the critical position in foot. which he was placed he took refuge in simple “What's the matter ?" asked Midwinter. denial.

There was no answer.

What is there so very “I know nothing about Mr. Armadale-oh startling," he went on, a little impatiently, “in dear, no, Sir, I know nothing about Mr. Arma- Miss Gwilt's being my wife ?" dale," he answered, with needless eagerness and “Your wife?" repeated Mr. Bashwood, helphurry. “Welcome back to England, Sir,” he lessly. “Mrs. Armadale—!" He checked himwent on, changing the subject in his nervously self by a desperate effort, and said no more. talkative manner. “I didn't know you had The stupor of astonishment which possessed been abroad. It's so long since we have had the steward was instantly reflected in Midwinthe pleasure—since I have had the pleasure-ter's face. The name in which he had secretly Have you enjoyed yourself, Sir, in foreign married his wife had passed the lips of the last parts ? Such different manners from ours- man in the world whom he would have dreamed yes, yes, yes-such different manners from ours! of admitting into his confidence! He took Mr. Do you make a long stay in England, now you Bashwood by the arm, and led him away to a have come back?"

quieter part of the terminus than the part of “I hardly know," said Midwinter. “I have it in which they had hitherto spoken to each been obliged to alter my plans, and to come to other. England unexpectedly.” He hesitated a little ; "You referred to my wife just now," he said; his manner changed, and he added in lower and you spoke of Mrs. Armadale in the same tones, “A serious anxiety has brought me back. breath. What do you mean by that ?" I can't say what my plans will be until that Again there was no answer. Utterly incapaanxiety is set at rest."

ble of understanding more than that he had The light of a lamp fell on his face while he involved himself in some serious complication spoke, and Mr. Bashwood observed, for the first which was a complete mystery to him, Mr. Bashtime, that he looked sadly worn and changed. wood struggled to extricate himself from the

“ I'm sorry, Sir-I'm sure I'm very sorry. If grasp that was laid on him, and struggled in I could be of any use—?” suggested Mr. Bash- vain. wood, speaking under the influence in some de- Midwinter sternly repeated the question. “I urce of his nervous politeness, and in some degree ask you again,” he said, “what do you mean of his remembrance of what Midwinter had done by it?" for him at Thorpe-Ambrose in the by-gone time. “Nothing, Sir! I give you my word of

Midwinter thanked him, and turned away sad- honor I meant nothing!” He felt the hand on ly. “I am afraid you can be of no use, Mr. his arm tightening its grasp ; he saw, even in Bashwood; but I am obliged to you for your the obscurity of the remote corner in which they offer, all the same." He stopped, and consid- stood, that Midwinter's fiery temper was rising ered a little: "Suppose she should not be ill? and was not to be trifled with. The extremity Suppose some misfortune should have hap- of his danger inspired him with the one ready pened ?" he resumed, speaking to himself, and capacity that a timid man possesses when he is turning again toward the steward. “If she compelled by main force to face an emergency has left her mother, some trace of her might be the capacity to lie. “I only meant to say, found by inquiring at Thorpe-Ambrose.” Sir," he burst out, with a desperate effort to

Mr. Bashwood's curiosity wasinstantly aroused. look and speak confidently, “ that Mr. ArmaThe whole sex was interesting to him now for dale would be surprised" the sake of Miss Gwilt.

“You said Mrs. Armadale!"

[ocr errors][ocr errors]
« AnteriorContinuar »