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ordinances and regulations of the place were established by certain learned and religious men, such as Gildas, Minnius, and others, who had all lived to a good old age in these studies, having settled matters there in peace and harmony, and that S. Germanus came to Oxford and stayed there half a year, in his journey over Britain, to preach against the Pelagian heresies, and wonderfully approved their plans and institution.
The king, with unheard-of condescension, gave both parties attentive hearing, and repeated his pious and seasonable advice to maintain mutual union and concord, and left them with the prospect that both parties would follow his advice and embrace his institutions.
But Grimbald, offended at this proceeding, immediately retired to the monastery of Hyde, in Winchester, lately founded by King Alfred. He also caused his tomb to be removed to Winchester, in which he had intended to lay his bones when his course of life was ended, in the vault under the chancel of S. Peter's Church, Oxford, which church himself had built from the ground, of stone, polished in the most costly manner.
A.D 889, Grimbald was offered and refused the Archbishopric of Canterbury. S. Grimbald is also said to have built a cathedral at Winchester, a monastery at Athelney, and a nunnery at Shaftesbury.
A.D. 903. This year died S. Grimbald, the mass-priest, at Hyde monastery, Winchester, where he was Abbot, on the 8th July; a man of great holiness and piety.
The following are some of the offices which S. Grimbald held, viz.: Abbot of Winchester monastery; Brother of S. Bertin, Flanders ; Confessor in the same convent, under the Abbot of S. Bertin ; Doctor of Divinity in the University of Oxford ; expositor of the Holy Scriptures ; Provost of S. Bertin.
A NIGHT OF TERROR DURING THE RECENT FLOODS
ON THE BALTIC COAST.
(From the German.) It was one of those evenings calm and quiet as death : the waters of the Baltic curled softly round the keels of the vessels on her breast, the little waves played about the round stones and white shells on the
All were pro
of the deep.
strand; the green hills, or downs, rose to the height of thirty or forty feet, in a threefold tier, above the level of the sea. Behind these downs nestled a peaceful village, sheltered by old oaks and gigantic beeches. The little town began its existence towards the end of the last century, and has been ever since colonised, almost exclusively, by the families of the hardy fishers, who, so long as strength and health lasted, went out, week by week, in search of the finny “ treasures of the deep.”
The dwellings lay, for the most part, at some little distance from each other; and were constructed of various materials. vided, however, with small gardens, and all looked the perfection of neatness and of comfort. In the midst of the colony stood the little church; with its tapering white spire, and its large gilt cock; towards which the villagers daily looked, to see in what direction blew the wind; that most trusty friend, or most deadly enemy, of the seafaring man. By the church lay the quiet graveyard, dotted over with white stones and black crosses, underneath which lay sleepers, who during life had all, more or less, struggled with or suffered from the dangers
Close to the church stood the comfortable little parsonage, in which for nearly fifty years had lived the pastor, now of course an aged man. He had christened the greater number of his flock, and to all he had diligently preached the Word of God. The good old man had one dear friend of about his own age. This was the forester, who had lived in the place nearly as long as he had. The forester's two sons had married two of the parson's daughters ; thus forming a double link, of connection and of friendship, between the two old men, who had united their means, and bought for the two sons, who were both seafaring men, a schooner, of which the elder of the brothers was now captain. The “ Johanna-Mary” was a pretty and a prosperous vessel. There were others who had an interest in her. The postmaster, who had himself formerly commanded a small ship, had a son on board her, as had also a certain old sailor, Captain Gerard. The pastor and this captain Gerard were about shortly to be still further united in their interests. The latter had another and an elder son than his sailor lad. This elder son had taken part in the recent wars, and, having lost an arm at the Loire, had won there the cross, and had afterwards returned home invalided, with a good pension, sufficient to keep him from want. When he had first stepped over the threshold of his home, on his return, as his father locked him in his arms, and while the parson murmured the words, “The LORD gave and the LORD hath taken away,
blessed be His Name," the maimed soldier heard a little sob come from a corner of the room. On turning to see whence it came, he found the reality of the fair vision which had ever been his one comfort and support in the danger and tumult of war, the pastor's pretty youngest daughter, the fair and gentle Elsie. He reached her his one hand, she threw both her arms round his neck. The parents understood how matters were, and blessed their children. Lieutenant Gerard possessed some private means, in addition to his pension. With a sum of money, left him by a godfather, he purchased a small portion of land and a lodge on the borders of the forest. Here he and Elsie were to live. Thus these four old men, who had all, years before, been left widowers, were closely united in their interests. No quarrel had ever arisen between them or their children, and the glorious old forest spread the shadow of its protection over few happier houses.
The morning of the 12th of November last had dawned. Through the, for the most part, leafless trees the sun streamed down blood-red beams. The air was calm, but, except in the east, the sky was cloudy. The sea was of a dull grey colour, and a mist or haze peculiar to the season obscured the scene. Under the old linden tree which grew before the parsonage
stood the old pastor that morning, at eight o'clock. The four heads of the families in which we are interested were in the habit, weather permitting, of meeting here soon after sunrise every morning, to exchange greetings, and to ask the news of the postmaster. On this occasion the old clergyman looked doubtingly up at the sky, and shook his head at the sun's lurid rays. The postmaster's cheerful voice, however, interrupted his meditations.
" It will be a fine day,” he said reassuringly. “It is but seldom at this time of year that the haze lets the sun show his face at rising, but when 'tis the case we always have fine weather. If the wind keeps to the south, pastor, you will have a merry wedding."
"Do you think so ?” asked the pastor, thoughtfully. “That bloodred sunlight pleases me but little. It may bring storms and bad weather. God save us from it! Our sons cannot now be far from the harbour. By their last letter, and by my reckoning, they must be at Rostock to-day, and might be in here this evening, and to-morrow is Elsie’s wedding-day—but if storms come- -"
“And they are coming,” interrupted Captain Gerard. “I have
just come from the downs, and I never since I settled here have seen such a height of water. The strand is under water up to the foot of the hills. The sea is coming in too with a hollow sound, though the wind is from the south. If the cock goes round the storm comes. I hope the boys are in harbour, they have had no contrary winds.”
Just then the forester came up to the three friends. He had his gun on his arm and purposed going into the forest.
" Are you going to shoot us more of the Prince's stray pheasants for the wedding, forester ?” asked one. “ It is rather late, I think. They should hang awhile to be tender.”
“Ah, what pheasants ?” answered the woodsman half angrily. “I have had enough to do with other birds last night. I was never so tormented in
my “How so? what has happened ?" inquired the postmaster.
“Owls have happened, owls I tell you, so many owls that I never saw the like before. 'Twas as if every owl in the forest had sworn to pay me a visit. Go to the barn by my house, and you'll see a fine company of them, old and young, great and small. The hooting of them stunned me, so that I escaped from the place. 'Tis a bad sign. There is ugly weather at hand.”
On a sudden the friends were startled by a loud creaking noise from above.
“See !” cried the old sailor captain,“ the wind is going to the northeast, and in ten minutes it will blow in from the sea.
Let us go on the downs."
The friends went off together. It took them some ten minutes to descend one hill, they then began to ascend the next. Already the wind was blowing from the north-east, and the white sea-birds danced on the top of the waves. The sky and sea seemed intermingled in one cold grey expanse.
A fine rain, mixed with snow, began to be whirled about. The surge rose momently higher and higher. It seemed as though, as far as the eye could reach, the whole deep was being upheaved mountains high, till it threatened to overwhelm the whole coast.
“Let us hasten to the village and spread the alarm,” cried the pastor. “ Unless all the boats are drawn up at once they are lost. Three feet more of water will sweep them off.”
The friends returned whence they had come, with the exception of the captain. He remained on the hill and with his glass swept the
whole horizon. He, and all the hastily appearing fishermen, were relieved to find that as far as it was possible to see, no mast or sail was on the water.
Then began a busy time. All the boats and fishing-gear, the principal wealth of the little colony, were drawn high up on the downs, higher up
far than the water had ever for the last two hundred years been known to rise. Happily all the fishermen were at home, not a single man at sea. By ten o'clock the work was accomplished. The storm was still raging, but it had not increased, and the villagers returned home somewhat reassured. At the parsonage all went to outward appearance merrily. Great preparations were on hand for the coming wedding. The table was spread for the feast, the doors and windows were wreathed with evergreens.
The afternoon came on. The storm had begun again to increase, from one o'clock, but the watch posted on the hills reported that there was still no ship in sight. The old pastor walked up and down his room, deep concern on his face. The hour drew on when his sons-inlaw might be expected. Elsie, in spite of the wind and rain, had gone to her sisters. They dwelt in two adjoining cottages not far from the church. Only a garden separated the two houses. Here there were also festive decorations, for there is an old custom which prevails much amongst some seafaring people. It is, that so long as the sailors in the families are on the water all the rooms remain shut up, and all the windows shuttered, with the exception of the one room, in daily use as a sitting-room; which room is generally at the back of the house. But so soon as the skipper returns home the shutters are taken down, the rooms opened, and the furniture is all dusted. The house is adorned as much as possible, and is all inhabited. Johanna and Mary expected their husbands. Elsie met both, with their children, in the house of the firstnamed sister. It was with much difficulty however that the young girl had made her way, even such a short distance. She but narrowly escaped injury from the branches, which were whirled off the trees as she passed. Again and again she had almost fallen. Her married sisters greeted her with despairing lamentations. Both knew the full danger of their husbands' situation. While Elsie was seeking to comfort them, her lover, Ernest Gerard, suddenly came in, and, pale as death, called to them all to hasten after him to the parsonage, taking with them all the money they could lay bands on.