Imagini ale paginilor

For a merciless sword on Culloden shall wave,
Culloden! that reeks with the blood of the brave.

Lochiel. Go, preach to the coward, thou death-telling seer! Or, if gory Culloden so dreadful appear,

Draw, dotard, around thy old wavering sight,
This mantle, to cover the phantoms of fright.


Wizard. Ha! laugh'st thou, Lochiel, my vision to scorn
Proud bird of the mountain, thy plume shall be torn.
Say, rushed the bold eagle exultingly forth,
From his home in the dark rolling clouds of the north?
Lo! the death-shot of foeman outspeeding, he rode
Companionless, bearing destruction abroad:

But down let him stoop from his havoc on high!
Ah! home let him speed, for the spoiler is nigh.
Why flames the far summit? Why shoot to the blast
Those embers, like stars from the firmament cast?
"T is the fire-shower of ruin all dreadfully driven
From his eyrie, that beacons the darkness of heaven.
O, crested Lochiel, the peerless in might,

Whose banners arise on the battlement's height,
Heaven's fire is around thee, to blast and to burn;
Return to thy dwelling! all lonely return!
For the blackness of ashes shall mark where it stood,
And a wild mother scream o'er her famishing brood.

Lochiel. False wizard, avaunt! I have marshaled my clan; Their swords are a thousand, their bosoms are one! They are true to the last of their blood and their breath, And, like reapers, descend to the harvest of death. Then welcome be Cumberland's steed to the shock! Let him dash his proud foam like a wave on the rock! But woe to his kindred, and woe to his cause, When Albin her claymore indignantly draws; When her bonneted chieftains to victory crowd, Clanranald the dauntless, and Moray the proud, All plaided and plumed in their tartan array

Wizard. Lochiel, Lochiel, beware of the day!
For, dark and despairing, my sight I may seal,
But man cannot cover what God would reveal:
"T is the sunset of life gives me mystical lore,
And coming events cast their shadows before.
I tell thee, Culloden's dread echoes shall ring
With the bloodhounds that bark for thy fugitive king.
Lo! anointed by Heaven with the vials of wrath,
Behold, where he flies on his desolate path!
Now, in darkness and billows, he sweeps from my sight!
Rise! rise! yc wild tempests, and cover his flight!
'Tis finished. Their thunders are hushed on the moors;
Culloden is lost, and my country deplores.
But where is the iron bound prisoner? Where?
For the red eye of battle is shut in despair.
Say, mounts he the ocean-wave, banished, forlorn,
Like a limb from his country cast bleeding and torn?
Ah no! for a darker departure is near;

The war-drum is muffled, and black is the bier;
His death-bell is tolling. Oh! mercy, dispel
Yon sight, that it freezes my spirit to tell!
Life flutters convulsed in his quivering limbs,
And his blood-streaming nostril in agony swims.
Accursed be the fagots, that blaze at his feet,
Where his heart shall be thrown ere it ceases to beat,
With the smoke of its ashes to poison the gale —


Lochiel. Down, soothless insulter! I trust not the tale : Though my perishing ranks should be strewed in their gore Like ocean-weeds heaped on the surf-beaten shore,

Lochiel, untainted by flight or by chains,

While the kindling of life in his bosom remains,
Shall, victor, exult, or in death be laid low,

With his back to the field, and his feet to the foe.
And, leaving in battle no blot on his name,
Look proudly to Heaven from the death-bed of fame.




[The learner may note the most emphatic words in this piece, and tell why they are emphatic. See Rules for emphasis, p. 18, &c.]

1. AGAINST the prisoner at the bar, as an individual, I cannot have the slightest prejudice. I would not do him the smallest injury or injustice. But I do not affect to be indifferent to the discovery and the punishment of this deep guilt. I cheerfully share in the opprobrium, how much soever it may be, which is cast on those who feel and manifest an anxious concern, that all who had a part in planning, or a hand in executing this deed of midnight assassination, may be brought to answer for their enormous crime at the bar of public justice.

2. Gentlemen, it is a most extraordinary case. In some respects, it has hardly a precedent anywhere; certainly none in our New England history. An aged man, without an enemy in the world, in his own house, and in his own bed, is made the victim of a butcherly murder, for mere pay. Deep sleep had fallen on the destined victim, and on all beneath his roof. A healthful old man, to whom sleep was sweet, the first sound slumbers of the night held him in their soft but strong embrace.

3. The assassin enters through the window, already prepared, into an unoccupied apartment. With noiseless foot he paces the lonely hall half-lighted by the moon; he winds up the ascent of the stairs and reaches the door of the chamber. Of this he moves the lock, by soft and continual pressure, till it turns on its hinges; and he enters, and beholds his victim before him. The room was uncommonly open to the admission of light.

4. The face of the innocent sleeper was turned from the murderer, and the beams of the moon, resting on the gray locks of his aged temple, showed him where to strike. The

fatal blow is given! and the victim passes without a struggle or a motion, from the repose of sleep to the repose of death' The deed is done. He retreats, retraces his steps to the window, passes out through it as he came in, and escapes. He has done the murder; no eye has seen him, no ear has heard him.

5. The secret is his own, and it is safe! Ah! gentlemen, that was a dreadful mistake. Such a secret can be safe no where. The whole creation of God has neither nook nor corner where the guilty can bestow it, and say it is safe. A thousand eyes turn at once to explore every man, every thing, and every circumstance, connected with the time and place; a thousand ears catch every whisper; a thousand excited minds intensely dwell on the scene, shedding all their light, and ready to kindle the slightest circumstance into a blaze of discovery.

6. Meantime the guilty soul cannot keep its own secret. It is false to itself; or rather, it feels an irresistible impulse of conscience to be true to itself. It labors under its guilty possession, and knows not what to do with it. He feels it beating at his heart, rising to his throat, and demanding disclosure. He thinks that the whole world sees it in his face, reads it in his eyes, and almost hears its workings in the very silence of his thoughts.

7. It betrays his discretion, it breaks down his courage, it conquers his prudence. When suspicions from without begin to embarrass him, and the net of circumstance to entangle him, the fatal secret struggles with still greater violence to burst forth. It must be confessed, it will be confessed; there is no refuge from confession but suicide, and suicide is confession.

a Conscience; that moral faculty of the mind which decides what is right or wrong from the facts presented.




1. He was born to be great. Whoever was second, Hamilton must be first. To his stupendous and versatile mind no investigation was difficult, no subject presented which he did. not illuminate. Superiority in some particular, belongs to thousands. Preeminence, in whatever he chose to undertake, was the prerogative of Hamilton. No fixed criterion could be applied to his talents. Often has their display been supposed to have reached the limit of human effort; and the judgment stood firm till set aside by himself.

2. When a cause of new magnitude required new exertions, he rose, he towered, he soared; surpassing himself as he surpassed others. Then was nature tributary to his eloquence! Then was felt his despotism over the heart! of Touching, at his pleasure, every string of pity or terror, indignation or grief, he melted, he soothed, he roused, he agitated; alternately gentle as the dews, and awful as the thunder.


3. Yet, great as he was in the eyes of the world, he was greater in the eyes of those with whom he was most conversThe greatness of most men, like objects seen through a mist, diminishes with the distance; but Hamilton, like a tower seen afar off under a clear sky, rose in grandeur and sublimity with every step of approach. Familiarity with him was the parent of veneration.

4. Over these matchless talents, probity threw her brightest luster. Frankness, suavity, tenderness, benevolence, breathed through their exercise. And to his family! but he is gone. That noble heart beats no more; that eye of fire is dimmed; and sealed are those oracular lips. Americans, the serenest beam of your glory is extinguished in the tomb!

■ Hamilton (Alexander;) an orator and statesman, born at Nevis, one of the West India islands.

« ÎnapoiContinuă »