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prime, the profitable, the active hours, when ¦¦ the mind is vigorous, the spirits light, the intellect awake and fresh, and the whole being wound up by the refreshment of sleep, and animated by the return of light and life, for nobler services."
"Only figure to yourself," replied Mr. Stanley, "my six girls daily playing their four hours a piece, which is now a moderate allowance! As we have but one instrument they must be at it in succession, day and night, to keep pace with their neighbours. If I may compare light things with serious ones, it would resemble," added he, smiling, “the per
"If," said Sir John, "music were cultivated to embellish retirement, to be practised where pleasures are scarce, and good perfor-petual psalmody of good Mr. Nicholas Ferrar, mers not to be had, it would quite alter the who had relays of musicians every six hours case. But the truth is, these highly taught to sing the whole Psalter through every day ladies are not only living in public where they and night! I mean not to ridicule that holy constantly hear the most exquisite professors, man; but my girls thus keeping their useless but they have them also at their own houses. vigils in turn, we should only have the melody Now one of these two things must happen. without any of the piety. No, my friend! I Either the performance of the lady will be so will have but two or three singing birds to inferior as not to be worth hearing on the cheer my little grove. If all the world are comparison, or so good that she will fancy performers, there will soon be no hearers. herself the rival, instead of the admirer of the Now, as I am resolved in my own family that performer whom she had better pay and praise some shall listen, I will have but few to perthan fruitlessly emulate."
"This anxious struggle to reach the unattainable excellence of the professor," said Mr. Stanley," often brings to my mind the contest for victory between the ambitious nightingale and the angry lutanist in the beautiful Profusion of Strada."
"It must be confessed," said Sir John, " that Miss Rattle is no servile imitator of the vapid tribe of the superficially accomplished. Her violent animal spirits prevent her from growing smooth by attrition. She is as rough and angular as rusticity itself could have made her. Where strength of character, however, is only marked by the worst concomitant of strength, which is coarseness, I should almost
"It is to the predominance of this talent," replied I, "that I ascribe that want of companionableness of which I complain. The excellence of musical performance is a decorat-prefer inanity itself." ed screen, behind which all defects in domestic knowledge, in taste, judgment, and literature, and the talents which make an elegant companion, are creditably concealed."-"I have made," said Sir John, "another remark, young ladies who from apparent shyness do not join in the conversation of a small select party, are always ready enough to entertain them with music on the slightest hint. Surely it is equally modest to say as to sing, especially to sing those melting strains we sometimes hear sung, and which we should be ashamed to hear said. After all, how few hours are there in a week, in which a man engaged in the pursuits of life, and a woman in the duties of a wife, to employ in music. I am fond of it myself, and Lady Belfield plays admirably; but⠀ with the cares inseparable from the conscientious discharge of her duty with so many children, how little time has she to play, or I to listen! But there is no day, no hour, no meal in which I do not enjoy in her the ever ready pleasure of an elegant and interesting companion. A man of sense, when all goes smoothly, wants to be entertained; under vexation to be soothed; in difficulties to be counselled; in sorrow to be comforted. In a mere artist can be reasonably look for these resources ?"
"I should a little fear" said I, "that I lay too much stress on companionableness; on the positive duty of being agreeable at home, had I not early learnt the doctrine from my father and seen it exemplified so happily in the prac-, tice of my mother."
"I entirely agree with you, Charles," said Mr. Stanley, "as to the absolute morality of be ing agreeable in one's own family circle. Nothing so surely, and so certainly wears out the happiness of married persons, as that too common bad effect of familiarity, the sinking down into dullness and insipidity; neglecting to keep alive the flame by the delicacy which first kindled it; want of vigilance in keeping the temper cheerful by Christian discipline, and the faculties bright by constant use. Mutual affection decays, even where there is no great moral turpitude, without mutual endeavours, not only to improve, but to enter
"This" continued he, "is one of the great arts of home enjoyment. That it is so little practised, accounts in a good measure for the undomestic turn of too many married persons. The man meets abroad with amusement, and the woman with attentions, to which they are not accustomed at home. Whercas a capacity
to please on the one part, and a disposition to be pleased on the other, in their own house, would make most visits appear dull. But then the disposition and the capacity must be cultivated antecedently to marriage. A woman whose whole education has been rehearsal, will always be dull, except she lives on the stage, constantly displaying what she has been sedulously acquiring Books, on the contrary, well chosen books, do not lead to exhibition. The knowledge a woman acquires in private,|| desires no witness; the possession is the pleasure. It improves herself, it embellishes her family society, it entertains her husband, it informs her children. The gratification is cheap, is safe, is always to be had at home." "It is superfluous," said Sir John, "to decorate women so highly for early youth; youth is itself a decoration. We mistakingly adorn most that part of life which least requires it, and neglect to provide for that which will want it most. It is for that sober period when life has lost its freshness, the passions their intenseness, aud the spirits their hilarity, that we should be preparing. Our wisdom would be to anticipate the wants of middle life, to lay in a store of notions, ideas, principles, and habits, which may preserve, or transfer to the mind that affection, which was at first partly attracted for the person. But to add a vacant mind to a form which has ceased to please; to provide no subsidiary aid to beauty while it lasts, and especially no substitute when it is departed, is to render life comfortless, and marriage dreary."
clination, and a sounder judgment for performing them. But pray observe, that I assume my reading woman to be a religious woman; for I will not answer for the effect of literary vauity, more than for that of any other vanity, in a mind not habitually disciplined by Christian principles, the only safe and infallible antidote for knowledge of every kind." "Before we had finished our conversation we were interrupted by the arrival of the post. Sir John eagerly opened the newspaper; but, instead of gratifying our impatience with the intelligence for which we panted from the glorious Spaniards, he read a paragraph which stated "that Miss Denham had eloped with Signor Squallini, that they were on their way to Scotland, and that Lady Denham had been in fits ever since."
"Lady Belfield with her usual kindness was beginning to express how much she pitied her old acquaintance. 66 My dear Caroline," said Sir John, "there is too much substantial and inevitable misery in the world, for you to waste much compassion on this foolish woman. Lady Denham has little reason to be surprised at any event which all reasonable people must have anticipated Provoking and disgraceful as it is, what has she to blame hut her own infatuation? This Italian was the associate of all her pleasures; the constant theme of her admiration. He was admitted when her friends were excluded. The girl was continually hearing that music was the best gift,and that Signor Squallini was the best gifted. Miss Denham" added he laughing "had more wit than your Strada's nightingale. Instead of dropping down dead on the lute for envy, she hought it better to run away with the lutauist for love. I pity the poor girl however, who has furnished such a commentary to our text, and who is rather the victim of a wretched education than of her own bad propensities."
"The reading of a cultivated woman,” said Mr. Stanley, "commonly occupies less time than the music of a musical woman, or the idleness of an indolent woman, or the dress of a vain woman, or the dissipation of a fluttering woman; she is therefore likely to have more leisure for her duties, as well as more in
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CONRADINE had commanded the physi- || mine to poison a damsel so gentle, so amiables cian to administer the poisonous draught to and so beautiful as Euphrosyne! Mounted on Euphrosyne in the presence of the Countess de a mule, and without any attendant, he arrived Martiques. Dr. Alibour was one of the kind- in the midst of the night at Conradine's capiest hearted men in the world; he might be tal. He was informed that Euphrosyne was in styled, by way of eminence, the physician of bed. "It does not signify," said he, "I must the fair sex; he loved to feel a lady's pulse: and will speak to her." He was conducted te how then was it possible that he could deter- her apartment.
"Dr. Alibour," exclaimed Euphrosyne, what brings you hither? have you left Conradine? has any accident befallen him?"
Dr. Alibour. None, fair lady, except that being far distant from you, he has been highly exasperated against you by false accounts. At the moment of my departure his hatred of you was as vehement as his love had before been. Euphrosyne. Your information afflicts me, Doctor. Who can be my accuser?
Dr. Alibour. The Countess de Martiques; for I am too much interested in your welfare to conceal any thing from you; the young Baron de Bormes, who is your constant attendant, and whom you have not kept confined in the tower.
Euphrosyne. Is it possible?
Dr Alibour. Possible enough. Conradine, burning with rage, has sent me hither. My errand would be the very reverse of agreeable, were I wicked enough to fulfil my commission. He has commanded me to give you poison.
Euphrosyne. To give me poison! And (with a supplicating look) would you obey his orders?
Dr. Alibour spectfully kissi her hand). No; but I must pretend to obey them. To-morrow, in the presence of the Countess, I shall hand you a bason full of a mixture of honey; you must drink it up, and then complain that you feel as if you bad a fire within you, and counterfeit convulsions. As it will be looked upon as a slow poison, you may afterwards by degrees resume your serenity, and will have an opportunity to prepare yourself to act your part adroitly on Conradine's return.
Euphrosyne. It is not in my power, Doctor, to make you a recompence for so important a service as the preservation of my life.
Dr. Alibour (smiling). Do you imagine then, that physicians never preserve the lives of their patients except for money? In this case I do nothing but what is perfectly natural, and do not even expect any acknowledgment. Farewel, fair lady, equally fair in body and in mind.
The next morning the Doctor went to the Countess, who was previously informed of his visit." Well," exclaimed she, " you are come to avenge our master."-"Yes," replied the Doctor." Where is the poison?"-" Here," said he, shewing ber the bason with the honey. "Let me see it."-" Do not touch it; its operation is dreadful though slow. There is no antidote; sooner or later death must ensue.”—“ So much the better; send for Euphrosyne."
Euphrosyne appeared, surrounded by Conradine's body-guard, and followed by her weep
ing sisters; she acted her part to perfection. "I know all," said she to the Countess; "I am doomed to die. Where is the bowl, Doctor? give it to me. I thank heaven," added she as she held it in her hand, “for putting an end to all my misery at once. With a man of so impetuous a disposition as Conradine I should have been unhappy." She drank off the contents of the bowl." It is over!" she exclaimed; "I carry death within my bosom; a consuming fire already circulates in my veins. Whither am 1 to be conveyed?" said she to the guards. "Are my hands to be loaded with fetters?"—"No," answered the Countess, "you are free, enjoy in liberty the few days you have to live."-" Tell him then, that I thank him for having at least spared me that humiliation." So saying she withdrew. Her sisters, unacquainted with the secret, wept and sobbed. The Countess admired her composure and her indifference to life, while the guards were lost in the utmost astonish
Their surprise was augmented when they a few days afterwards beheld Euphrosyne resume her accustomed vivacity. She returned to her former occupations, and seemed to have lost all remembrance of the tremendous scene.Conradine, having vanquished all his enemies, hastened back to the capital, elated with his victories, and as much incensed as ever against Euphrosyne. It was not merely offended love that roused him to vengeance; pride made him blush that he had betrayed such weakness as to suffer himself to be for a moment enchained by passion. The bonds were burst asunder; his gloomy, vindictive, and haughty disposition returned. He imagined that Euphrosyne would tremble in his presence, and betray in her features the marks of his re. venge; and he was determined to sharpen the pains of death with reproaches and humiliations.
On his arrival she was the first person that he met with. She was gathering flowers in her garden, and singing at the same time the touching straius of the poet of Limoges. With the utmost composure, unmixed with fear, she beheld Conradine. "What, are you here?" said she.-"Yes, faithless woman, I am here."
O, no more reproaches," rejoined she calmly, "after you have caused poison to be administered to me; I am sufficiently punished; no more of that. How have you been? Your victory, I am told, is complete; and this morning I returned thanks to God for it in the church of the Capuchins; for though I am not long for this world, yet believe me I am inter. ested in all that concerns you, and heartily
forgive you. But-hold me, Conradine,-hold me-I seem as if I should faint." Conradine held her in his arms for some minutes with emotions of indignation and astonishment. "It is the effect of the poison," said she, apparently coming to herself again; except that I ail nothing." Mute and gloomy, Conradine knew not what to answer; love, stronger than his anger, reproached him for his conduct, and he hastily quitted Euphrosyne. "No," said he, “no; her torments would at last be-leton was rising, and a sacrifice overturned,
cence and thine, if thou darest.”—“ I will,' replied the Baron. Couradine conducted him to the church of the Capuchins, and caused the terrific mass to be read which is commonly used for enemies of the state, sorcerers, and excommunicated persons. The wax-candles were extinguished, the church was hung with black; the young Baron himself was covered with a winding-sheet; before him was a half open grave, from which a frightful ske
come my own. When she shall be no more I may forget Euphrosyne, but to see her and to hehold her sufferings, to feast myself on her tortures.-No, I am not so cruel as I imagined. Die she shall either my sword or a stronger dose shall, to-morrow put an end to her misery."
Undaunted by all these appalling preparations, the young Baron swore with a loud voice that Euphrosyne was innocent. The clouds which before had overcast the sky disappeared; the sun shone forth in all his splendour; the tapers were again lighted; the temple resounded with shouts of joy; and the people accompanied Conradine and the young Baron with expressions of satisfaction which clearly proved how much Euphrosyne was beloved. What a glorious triumph for her! From this moment she feigned herself extremely weak, and complained of an internal decay occasioned
But he had first to inflict punishment on another criminal. The young Baron de Bormes, whom he looked upon as a rival, and a rival who was preferred to himself, deserved in his opinion something worse than death. Im mediately on his arrival he had ordered him to be loaded with fetters, and thrown into a dun-by poison; her fainting fits were more fre
quent, and she appeared in public more rarely than before. Now that she was sure that Conradine still loved her, and no longer doubted her innocence, she wished him to feel the horrors of remorse, and to impel him to an explanation for which she had paved the way.
Conradine, indeed, appeared to be tormented by the faries themselves. He never quitted Euphrosyne without reluctance; and as long as he was in her company he sighed and sat silent and melancholy. His sighs were answered by those of Euphrosyne; she too was silent, and seemed desirous to avoid his obscrvation. Each returning day brought a repetition of the same scenes.—“ Euphrosyne !” sometimes exclaimed Conradine in a tone of anguish, "Euphrosyue! wretched, wretched man!" and departed.
To this secret affliction was superadded anx
geou. Neither Beatrix, nor the Countess de
He descended into his dungeon. "Come
For some time one of these hermits had taken up his abode upon a mountain not far from Conradine's capital. He had constructed with his own hands a small habitation which, however, commanded veneration by the silence that reigned around, and by the precious relics, and among the rest a piece of the holy cross which he had brought back with him from the unfortunate crusade of Acre. He pretended to be a knight, and that he was accomplishing a vow which he had made when in extreme danger. A long beard, the reputation of prophecy, and austere manners, caused the people to place confidence in him. They througed to him for advice, and to implore him to intercede for the divine mercy in their behalf.
To this venerable man Conradine resolved to apply; through his means he hoped to obtain pardon from Heaven for the crime which he had intended to commit. Clothed in a bair-garment, like a penitent, he ascended the steep mountain on foot. "Man of God," said he, "listen to me; afford me thy assistauce;
Conradine kneels before thee. Do the same before the Almighty, who looks down with complacency upon thee, and acquaint him with my repentance. But first I promise thee to build a chapel upon this spot, and to provide priests for its service. Now hear what I have to communicate.”—On this, in the humble attitude of a contrite penitent, he commenced a confession of the insignificance of human grandeur, and of all his sins, and concluded with imploring the mercy of the Most High, and the blessing of the hermit. What a confession for the latter, who was no other than Elzear de Sabran, the father of Euphrosyne. Ou his return from the disastrous expedition to Palestine, he had at first intended to seek an asylum with Conradine; presuming that his daughters had followed his advice, and that the Count had been unable to resist their united attack; but when the false report concerning Euphrosyne had reached his ears, he thought it better to conceal his name, and to embrace the life of a hermit.
It is easy to conceive what difficulty he had to keep his temper, and to dissemble his feelings, when he beheld the murderer of his daughter kneeling before him. At length, unable to restrain himself, he exclaimed in a tone of indignation :—"Tremble Conradine; the poisoning of a fellow-creature cannot be forgiven; it is the basest of all crimes, and is particularly obnoxious to an offended God. It cannot be otherwise Conradine.—Live, tortured by conscience in this world, and tremble at the prospect of that which is to come."
Conradine. My physician.
The Hermit. Tell him to come also, but not a creature besides. I will pray the whole night, that Heaven may take compassion on Euphrosyne, and point out to me among the herbs which I myself cultivate an antidote to restore her.
Conradine. Man of God! if thou preservest her life, I will erect a glorious monument to thy memory. Thou seest the two peaks of you mountains, separated by a broad valley. I vow to consecrate to God a chain of gold which shall reach from one peak to the other as a token of gratitude for Euphrosyne's recovery.
The whole night long the hermit tolled the bell at his solitary retreat, and at the doleful sound Conradine betook himself to prayers at his castle. No sooner had the sun darted his first rays above the horizon than be repaired to Euphrosyne.-"Hasten to the mountain," said he, “fair Euphrosyne; the holy man who resides there expects you. Would to Heaven that he may fiud means to restore you to health. Doctor Alibour and your sisters shall accompany you. If he can devise none, before to-morrow dawns I shall cease to live.
Euphrosyne at length began to pity Conra dine. His repentance attested the violence of his passion, and his remorse was a sufficient punishment for an unaccomplished crime. More than once she was inclined to disclose every thing to Conradine, but she was apprehensive lest the discovery of the artifice should be productive of bad consequences in so proud a man as Conradine. Doctor Alibour was in the like dilemma; the pilgrimage to the mountain was therefore agreeable to them both, "I doubt not the omnipotence of God," said she to Conradine; "he sees your repentance, he knows that I have forgiven you; he will take compassion on us both; and I have a secret presentiment of some extraordinary miracle.”—“ You pour consolation into my soul, fair lady," said Conradine; "go, pray for me to God, whose hand lies heavy upon me,