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climes that we could plainly see the tracks of the wild antelopes in the sand; and it was not without a slight tremble of feeling in his voice, as if some melancholy analogy occurred to him as he spoke, that the good Hermit said, "I have observed, in the course of my walks,' that wherever the track of that gentle animal appears, there is, almost always, found the foot-print of a beast of prey near it." He regained, however, his usual cheerfulness before we parted, and fixed the following evening for an excursion, on the other side of the ravine, to a point looking, he said, "towards that northern region of the desert, where the hosts of the Lord encamped in their departure out of bondage."

during the night, and already the wild fury of bigotry was let loose.

Under a canopy, in the middle of the Forum, was the tribunal of the Governor. Two statuesone of Apollo, the other of Osiris-stood at the bottom of the steps that led up to his judgmentseat. Before these idols were shrines, to which the devoted Christians were dragged froin all quarter by the soldiers and mob, and there compelled to recant, by throwing incense into the flame, or, on their refusal, hurried away to torture and death It was an appalling scene;-the consternation, the cries of some of the victims--the pale, silent reselution of others;-the fierce shouts of laughter that broke from the multitude, when the dropping of the frankincense on the altar proclaimed some denier of Christ; and the fiend-like triumph with which the courageous Confessors, who avowed their faith, were led away to the flames;-never could I have conceived such an assemblage of horrors!

Though, when Alethe was present, all my fears even for herself were forgotten in that perpetual element of happiness, which encircled her like the air that she breathed, no sooner was I alone, than vague terrors and bodings crowded upon me. In vain did I endeavor to reason away my fears, by dwelling only on the most cheering circumstances Though I gazed but for a few minutes, in these -on the reverence with which Melanius was re- minutes I felt and fancied enough for years. Algarded, even by the Pagans, and the inviolate se-ready did the form of Alethe appear to flit before curity with which he had lived through the most me through that tumult ;-I heard them shout her perilous periods, not only safe himself, but affording name; her shriek fell on my ear; and the very sanctuary in the depths of his grottoes to others. thought so palsied me with terror, that I stood fixed Though somewhat calmed by these considerations, and statue-like on the spot. yet, when at length I sunk off to sleep, dark, horrible dreams took possession of my mind. Scenes of death and of torment passed confusedly before me; and, when I awoke, it was with the fearful impression that all these horrors were real


Ar length, the day dawned-that dreadful day! Impatient to be relieved from my suspense, I threw myself into my boat-the same in which we had performed our happy voyage-and, as fast as oars could speed me, hurried away to the city. I found the suburbs silent and solitary, but, as I approached the Forum, loud yells, like those of barbarians in combat, struck on my ear, and, when I entered itgreat God, what a spectacle presented itself! The imperial edict against the Christians had arrived

1 "Je remarquai, avec une réflexion triste, qu'un animal de proie accompagne presque toujours les pas de ce joli et frele individu."

"These Christians who sacrificed to idols to save themselves were called by various names, Thurificati, Saerificati,

Recollecting, however, the fearful preciousness of every moment, and that-perhaps, at this very instant-some emissaries of blood might be on their way to the Grottoes, I rushed wildly out of the Forum, and made my way to the quay.

The streets were now crowded; but I ran headlong through the multitude, and was already under the portico leading down to the river-already saw the boat that was to bear me to Alethe-when a Centurion stood sternly in my path, and I was surrounded and arrested by soldiers! It was in vain that I implored, that I struggled with them as for life, assuring them that I was a stranger- | that I was an Athenian-that I was not a Christian. The precipitation of my flight was. sufficient evidence against me, and unrelentingly, and by force, they bore me away to the quarters of their Chief.

It was enough to drive me at once to madness! Two hours, two frightful hours, was I kept waiting the arrival of the Tribune of their Legion-my brain burning with a thousand fears and imagiaations, which every passing minute made but more

Mittentes, Negatores," &c. Baronius mentions a bishop of this period, (253,) Marcellinus, who, yielding to the threats! of the Gentiles, threw incense upon the altar.-Vide Arned. contra Gent. lib. vii.

A rank, similar to that of Colonel.

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likely to be realized. All I could collect, too, from the conversations of those around me, but added to the agonizing apprehensions with which I was racked. Troops, it was said, had been sent in all directions through the neighborhood, to bring in the rebellious Christians, and make them bow before the Gods of the Empire. With horror, too, I heard of Orcus Orcus, the High Priest of Memphis-as one of the principal instigators of this sanguinary edict, and as here present in Antinoë, animating and directing its execution.

In this state of torture I remained till the arrival of the Tribune. Absorbed in my own thoughts, I had not perceived his entrance;-till, hearing a voice, in a tone of friendly surprise, exclaim, "Alciphron !" I looked up, and in this legionary Chief recognised a young Roman of rank, who had held a military command, the year before, at Athens, and was one of the most distinguished visiters of the Garden. It was no time, however, for courtesies: he was proceeding with all cordiality to greet me, but, having heard him order my instant release, I could wait for no more. Acknowledging his kindness but by a grasp of the hand, I flew off, like one frantic, through the streets, and, in a few minutes, was on the river.

My sole hope had been to reach the Grottoes before any of the detached parties should arrive, and, by a timely flight across the desert, rescue, at least, Alethe from their fury. The ill-fated delay that had occurred rendered this hope almost desperate; but the tranquillity I found everywhere as I proceeded down the river, and my fond confidence in the sacredness of the Hermit's retreat, kept my heart from sinking altogether under its terrors.

Between the current and my oars, the boat flew, with the speed of wind, along the waters, and I was already near the rocks of the ravine, when I saw, turning out of the canal into the river, a barge crowded with people, and glittering with arms! How did I ever survive the shock of that sight? The oars dropped, as if struck out of my hands, into the water, and I sat, helplessly gazing, as that terrific vision approached. In a few minutes, the current brought us together; and I saw, on the deck of the barge, Alethe herself and the Hermit surrounded by soldiers!

We were already passing each other, when, with a desperate effort, I sprang from my boat and lighted upon the edge of their vessel. I knew not what I did. for despair was my only prompter. Snatching at the sword of one of the soldiers, as I stood tottering on the edge, I had succeeded in wresting it out of his hands, when, at the same moment, I received a thrust of a lance from one of his comrades, and fell backward into the river. I can just remember

rising again and making a grasp at the side of the vessel;-but the shock, and the faintness from my wound, deprived me of all consciousness, and a shriek from Alethe, as I sank, is all I can recollect of what followed.

Would I had then died!-Yet, no, Almighty Being-I should have died in darkness, and I have lived to know Thee!

On returning to my senses, I found myself roclined on a couch, in a splendid apartment, the whole appearance of which being Grecian, I, for a moment, forgot all that had passed, and imagined myself in my own home at Athens. But too soon the whole dreadful certainty flashed upon me; and, starting wildly-disabled as I was-from my couch, I called loudly, and with the shriek of a maniac, upon Alethe.

I was in the house, I then found, of my friend and disciple, the young Tribune, who had made the Governor acquainted with my name and condition, and had received me under his roof, when brought, bleeding and insensible, to Antinoë. From him I now loarned at once-for I could not wait for details-the sum of all that had happened in that dreadful interval. Melanius was no more-Alethe still alive, but in prison!

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"Take me to her"-I had but time to say"take me to her instantly, and let me die by her side" when, nature again failing under such shocks, I relapsed into insensibility. In this state I continued for near an hour, and, on recovering, found the Tribune by my side. The horrors, he said, of the Forum were, for that day, over,—but what the morrow might bring, he shuddered to contemplate. His nature, it was plain, revolted from the inhuman dutics in which he was engaged. Touched by the agonies he saw me suffer, he, in some degree, relieved them, by promising that I should, at nightfall, be conveyed to the prison, and, if possible, through his influence, gain access to Alethe. She might yet, he added, be saved, could I succeed in persuading her to comply with the terms of the edict, and make sacrifice to the Gods."Otherwise," said he, "there is no hope ;-the vindictive Orcus, who has resisted even this short respite of mercy, will, to-morrow, inexorably demand his prey."

He then related to me, at my own requestthough every word was torture-all the harrowing details of the proceeding before the Tribunal. “I have seen courage," said he, "in its noblest forms, in the field; but the calm intrepidity with which that aged hermit endured torments-which it was hardly less torment to witness-surpassed all that I could have conceived of human fortitude!"

My poor Alethe, too-in describing to me her

conduct, the brave man wept like a child. Overwhelmed, he said, at first by her apprehensions for my safety, she had given way to a full burst of womanly weakness. But no sooner was she brought before the Tribunal, and the declaration of her faith was demanded of her, than a spirit almost supernatural seemed to animate her whole form. "She raised her eyes," said he, "calmly, but with fervor, to heaven, while a blush was the only sign of mortal feeling on her features:-and the clear, sweet, and untrembling voice, with which she pronounced her own doom, in the words, I am a Christian!" sent a thrill of admiration and pity throughout the multitude. Her youth, her loveliness, affected all hearts, and a cry of 'Save the young maiden!' was heard in all directions."

The implacable Orcus, however, would not hear of mercy. Resenting, as it appeared, with all his deadliest rancor, not only her own escape from his toils, but the aid with which she had, so fatally to his views, assisted mine, he demanded loudly and in the name of the insulted sanctuary of Isis, her instant death. It was but by the firm intervention of the Governor, who shared the general sympathy in her fate, that the delay of another day was granted to give a chance to the young maiden of yet recalling her confession, and thus affording some pretext for saving her.

Even in yielding, with evident reluctance, to this respite, the inhuman Priest would yet accompany it with some mark of his vengeance. Whether for the pleasure (observed the Tribune) of mingling mockery with his cruelty, or as a warning to her of the doom she must ultimately expect, he gave orders that there should be tied round her brow one of those chaplets of coral, with which it is the custom of young Christian maidens to array themselves on the day of their martyrdom;-" and, thus fearfully adorned," said he, "she was led away, amidst the gaze of the pitying multitude, to prison."

With these harrowing details the short interval till nightfall-every minute of which seemed an age-was occupied. As soon as it grew dark, I was placed upon a litter-my wound, though not dangerous, requiring such a conveyance-and, under the guidance of my friend, I was conducted to the prison. Through his interest with the guard, we were without difficulty admitted, and I was borne into the chamber where the maiden lay immured. Even the veteran guardian of the place

seemed touched with compassion for his prisoner, i and supposing her to be asleep, had the litter placed gently near her.

She was half reclining, with her face hid beneath her hands, upon a couch-at the foot of which stood an idol, over whose hideous features a lamp of naphtha, that hung from the ceiling, shed a wild and ghastly glare. On a table before the image was a censer, with a small vessel of incense beside it-one grain of which, thrown voluntarily ine the flame, would, even now, save that precios | life. So strange, so fearful was the whole scene, | that I almost doubted its reality. Alethe! my oWD, happy Alethe! can it, I thought, be thou that I look upon?

She now slowly and with difficulty, raised her head from the couci., on observing which, the kind | Tribune withdrew, and we were left alone. There was a paleness, as of death, over her features; and Į those eyes which, when last I saw them, were Bat too bright, too happy for this world, looked dim and sunken. In raising herself up, she put her hand, as if from pain, to her forehead, whose marble hue but appeared more death-like from those red bands that lay so awfully across it.

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After wandering for a minute vaguely, her eyes at length rested upon me-and, with a shriek, half terror, half joy, she sprung from the couch, and sunk upon her knees by my side. She had believed me dead; and, even now, scarcely trusted her senses. My husband! my love!" she exclaimed; "oh, if thou comest to call me from this world, behold I am ready!" In saying thus, she pointed wildly to that ominous wreath, and then dropped her head down upon my knee, as if an arrow bad pierced it.

"Alethe!" I cried-terrified to the very soul by that mysterious pang-and, as if the sound of my voice had reanimated her, she looked up, with a faint smile, in my face. Her thoughts, which had evidently been wandering, became collected; and in her joy at my safety, her sorrow at my suffering, she forgot entirely the fate that impended over herself. Love, innocent love, alone occupied all her thoughts; and the warmth, the affection, the devotedness, with which she spoke-oh how, at any other moment, I would have blessed, have lingered upon every word!

But the time flew fast-that dreadful morrow was approaching. Already I saw her writhing in

1 The merit of the confession "Christianus sum," or "Christiana sum," was considerably enhanced by the clearness and distinctness with which it was pronounced. Eusebius mentions the martyr Vetius as making it λauтporary $win.

a Une "de ces couronnes de grain de corail, dont les vierges martyres ornoient leurs cheveux en allant à la mort.”— Les Martyrs.


the hands of the torturer-the flames, the racks, the wheels, were before my eyes! Half frantic with the fear that her resolution was fixed, I flung myself from the litter in an agony of weeping, and supplicated her, by the love she bore me, by the happiness that awaited us, by her own merciful God, who was too good to require such a sacrificeby all that the most passionate anxiety could dictate, implored that she would avert from us the doom that was coming, and-but for once-comply with the vain ceremony demanded of her.

Shrinking from me, as I spoke-but with a look more of sorrow than reproach-" What, thou, too!" she said mournfully-" thou, into whose inmost spirit I had fondly hoped the same light had entered as into my own! No, never be thou leagued with them who would tempt me to make shipwreck of my faith! Thou, who couldst alone bind me to life, use not, I entreat thee, thy power; but let me die, as He I serve hath commanded -die for the Truth. Remember the holy lessons we heard together on those nights, those happy nights, when both the present and future smiled upon us-when even the gift of eternal life came more welcome to my soul, from the glad conviction that thou wert to be a sharer in its blessings;-shall I forfeit now that divine privilege? shall I deny the true God, whom we then learned to love?

"No, my own betrothed," she continued-pointing to the two rings on her finger-" behold these pledges they are both sacred. I should have been as true to thee as I am now to heaven,-nor in that life to which I am hastening shall our love be forgotten. Should the baptism of fire, through which I shall pass to-morrow, make me worthy to be heard before the throne of Grace, I will intercede for thy soul-I will pray that it may yet share with mine that inheritance, immortal and undefiled,' which Mercy offers, and that thou-and my dear mother and I

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She here dropped her voice; the momentary animation, with which devotion and affection had inspired her, vanished;-and there came a darkness over all her features, a livid darkness-like the approach of death-that made me shudder Seizing my hand convulthrough every limb. sively, and looking at me with a fearful eagerness, as if anxious to hear some consoling assurance from my own lips-" Believe me," she continued,

"not all the torments they are preparing for menot even this deep, burning pain in my brow, to which they will hardly find an equal-could be half so dreadful to me as the thought that I leave thee, without

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Here her voice again failed; her head sunk upon my arm, and-merciful God, let me forget what I then felt-I saw that she was dying! Whether I uttered any cry, I know not;-but the Tribune came rushing into the chamber, and, looking on the maiden, said, with a face full of horror, "It is but too true!"

He then told me in a low voice, what he had just learned from the guardian of the prison, that the band round the young Christian's brow' was— oh horrible!—a compound of the most deadly poison

the hellish invention of Orcus, to satiate his vengeance, and make the fate of his poor victim secure. My first movement was to untie that fatal wreath but it would not come away-it would not come away!

Roused by the pain, she again looked in my face; but, unable to speak, took hastily from her bosom the small silver cross which she had brought Having pressed it to with her from my cave. her own lips, she held it anxiously to mine, and, seeing me kiss the holy symbol with fervor, looked happy, and smiled. The agony of death seemed to have passed away;-there came suddenly over her features a heavenly light, some share of which I felt descending into my own soul, and, in a few minutes more, she expired in my arms.

Here ends the Manuscript; but, on the outer cover is found, in the handwriting of a much later period, the following Notice, extracted, as it appears, from some Egyptian martyrology :

"ALCIPHRON―an Epicurean philosopher, converted to Christianity, A. D. 257, by a young Egyptian maiden, who suffered martyrdom in that year. Immediately upon her death he betook himself to the desert, and lived a life, it is said, of much holiness and penitence. During the persecution under Dioclesian, his sufferings for the faith were

1 We find poisonous crowns mentioned by Pliny, under the designation of “coronæ ferales." Paschalius, too, gives the following account of these "deadly garlands," as he calls them:-"Sed mirum est tam salutare inventum humanam nequitiam reperisse, quomodo ad nefarios usus traducent.

Nempe, repertæ sunt nefandæ coronæ harum, quas dixi, tam salubrium per nomen quidem et speciem imitatrices, at re et effectu ferales, atque adeo capitis, cui imponuntur, interfectrices."--De Coronis.

most exemplary; and being at length, at an advanced age, condemned to hard labor, for refusing to comply with an Imperial edict, he died at the Brass Mines of Palestine, A. D. 297.

"As Alciphron held the opinions maintained since by Arius, his memory has not been spared by Athanasian writers, who, among other charges,

accuse him of having been addicted to the superstitions of Egypt. For this calumny, however, there appears to be no better foundation than a circumstance, recorded by one of his brother monks, that there was found, after his death, a small metal mirror, like those used in the ceremonies of Iss, suspended around his neck."







WELL may you wonder at my flight
From those fair Gardens, in whose bowers
Lingers whate'er of wise and bright,
Of Beauty's smile or Wisdom's light,

Is left to grace this world of ours.
Well may my comrades, as they roam,
On such sweet eves as this, inquire
Why I have left that happy home

Where all is found that all desire,
And Time hath wings that never tire;
Where bliss, in all the countless shapes,

That Fancy's self to bliss hath given,
Comes clustering round, like road-side grapes
That woo the traveller's lip, at even;
Where Wisdom flings not joy away-
As Pallas in the stream, they say,
Once flung her flute-but smiling owns
That woman's lip can send forth tones
Worth all the music of those spheres
So many dream of, but none hears;
Where Virtue's self puts on so well

Her sister Pleasure's smile, that, loath From either nymph apart to dwell,

We finish by embracing both.

Yes, such the place of bliss, I own,
From all whose charms I just have flown;
And even while thus to thee I write,
And by the Nile's dark flood recline,

Fondly, in thought, I wing ry flight
Back to those groves and gardens bright,
And often think, by this sweet light,
How lovelily they all must shine;
Can see that graceful temple throw

Down the green slope its lengthen'd shade, While, on the marble steps below,

There sits some fair Athenian maid, Over some favorite volume bending;

And, by her side, a youthful sage Holds back the ringlets that, descending, Would else o'ershadow all the page. But hence such thoughts!-nor let me grieve O'er scenes of joy that I but leave, As the bird quits awhile its nest To come again with livelier zest.

And now to tell thee-what I fear

Thou❜lt gravely smile at—why I'm here.
Though through my life's short, sunny dream,
I've floated without pain or care,
Like a light leaf, down pleasure's stream,
Caught in each sparkling eddy there;
Though never Mirth awaked a strain
That my heart echoed not again;
Yet have I felt, when even most gay,
Sad thoughts-I knew not whence or why-
Suddenly o'er my spirit fly,

Like clouds, that, ere we've time to say

"How bright the sky is!" shade the sky. Sometimes so vague, so undefined,

Were these strange dark'nings of my mindWhile naught but joy around me beam'd— So causelessly they've come and flown,

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