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Where we have been most happy.-In this vale
Our steps, long check'd; wondering at flowers and bloom,
From the bright wave, or, tired with lack-success,
Nor are the drear looks of the waning months
Of years, the wrecks of man, the changes dire,
'Tis not in spring, in summer, in the sun,
Of all earth's beauties fading,-the hoarse winds,
Unadorn'd was her loveliness, save where the dew
New fallen 'mong her temple locks hung;
"O give me one kiss, and thy white dewy feet
And gold shall thy neck and thy curling locks grace,
For far have I wander'd o'er ocean and plain,
By city, and fountain, and tree;
But so bonnie a maiden o'er all the wide earth,
She turn'd her eyes from him, and hung down her head,
By the sweep of her arm, and the wave of her hand,
He knew his true love through the flow'r beds he sprung,
In her ear some soft story to say
And the small birds sung loud, and the morning sun shone,
Lond. Magazine, August.
FROM THE GERMAN.
OR more than one hundred and prietor had added a padlock of most
In vain did the curiosity of the
Since that time the young man had
During this whole period of one hundred and fifty years, tradition had recorded only one single Schroll as having borne a doubtful character: he indeed, as many persons affirmed, had dealt with the devil. Certain it is that there was still preserved in the house a scrutoire fixed in the wall-and containing some mysterious manuscripts attributed to him; and the date of the year-1630, which was carved upon The the front, tallied with his era. key of this scrutoire had been constantly handed down to the eldest son, through five generations-with a solemn charge to take care that no other eye or ear should ever become acEvery quainted with its contents. precaution had been taken to guard against accidents or oversights: the lock was so constructed, that even with the right key, it could not be opened without special instructions; and for still greater security, the present pro
dently his own opinion that he was standing on the edge of the grave: and he employed himself unceasingly in arranging his affairs, and in making his successor acquainted with all such arrangements as regarded his more peculiar interests. One evening, as Rudolph came in suddenly from a neighbour's house, and happened to pass the scrutoire, be found the door wide open, and the inside obviously empty. Looking round, he observed his father standing on the hearth close to a great fire, in the midst of which was consuming the old black book.
Elias entreated his son earnestly to withdraw but Rudolph could not command himself; and he exclaimed "I doubt, I doubt, Sir, that this is the book which belongs to the scrutoire."
His father assented with visible confusion.
“Well, then, allow me to say, that I am greatly surprised at your treating in this way an heir-loom that for a century and more has always been transmitted to the eldest son."
"You are in the right, my son," said the father, affectionately taking him by the hand: "You are partly in the right: it is not quite defensible, I admit and I myself have had many scruples about the course I have taken. Yet still I feel myself glad upon the whole that I have destroyed this accursed book. He, that wrote it, never prospered ; all traditions agree in that; -why then leave to one's descendants a miserable legacy of unhallowed mysteries?
This excuse, however, did not satisfy Rudolph. He maintained that his father had made an aggression upon his rights of inheritance; and he argued the point so well, that Elias himself began to see that his son's complaint was not altogether groundless. The whole of the next day they behaved to each other not unkindly, but yet with some coolness. At night Elias could bear this no longer; and he said, "Dear Rudolph, we have lived long together in harmony and love; let us not begin to show an altered countenance to each other during the few days that I have yet to live."
Rudolph pressed his father's offered hand with a filial warmth; and the latter went on to say-" I purpose now to communicate to you by word of mouth the contents of the book which I have destroyed: I will do this with good faith and without reserve-unless you yourself can be persuaded to forego your own right to such a communication."
Elias paused-flattering himself, as it seemed, that his son would forego his right. But in this he was mistaken: Rudolph was far too eager for the disclosure; and earnestly pressed his father to proceed.
Again Elias hesitated, and threw a glance of profound love and pity upon his son-a glance that conjured him to think better and to waive his claim: but, this being at length obviously hopeless, he spoke as follows:-"The book relates chiefly to yourself: it points to you as to the last of our race. You turn pale. Surely, Rudolph, it would have been better that you had resolved to trouble yourself no farther about it? "No," said Rudolph, recovering his self. possession, "No: for it still remains a question whether this prophecy be true."
"It does so, it does, no doubt." "And is this all that the book says in regard to me?"
"No: it is not all: there is something more. But possibly you will only laugh when you hear it for at this day no body believes in such strange stories. However, be that as it may, the book goes on to say plainly and positively, that the Evil One (Heaven protect us!) will make you an offer tending greatly to your worldly advantage."
Rudolph laughed outright; and replied that, judging by the grave exterior of the book, he had looked to hear of more serious contents.
"Well, well, my son," said the old man, "I know not that I myself am disposed to place much confidence in these tales of contracts with the devil. But, true or not, we ought not to laugh at them. Enough for me that under any circumstances I am satisfied you have so much natural piety, that you would reject all worldly good fortune
that could meet you upon unhallowed comply with his too frequent importupaths. nities for money.
Here Elias would have broken off : but Rudolph said, "One thing more I wish to know: What is to be the nature of the good fortune offered to me? And did the book say whether I should accept it or not ?"
"Upon the nature of the good fortune the writer has not explained himself: all that he says-is, that by a discreet use of it, it is in your power to become a very great man. Whether you will accept it—but God preserve thee, my child, from any thought so criminal-upon this question there is a profound silence. Nay, it seems even as if this trader in black arts had at that very point been overtaken by death for he had broken off in the very middle of a word. The Lord have mercy upon his soul !"
Little as Rudolph's faith was in the possibility of such a proposal, yet he was uneasy at his father's communication and visibly disturbed; so that the latter said to him" Had it not been better, Rudolph, that you had left the mystery to be buried with me in the grave ?"
Rudolph said "No:" but his restless eye, and his agitated air, too evidently approved the accuracy of his father's solicitude.
After a residence of one year at the university, some youthful irregularities in which Rudolph was concerned subjected him, jointly with three others, to expulsion. Just at that time, the Seven Years' War happened to break out: two of the party, named Theiler and Werl, entered the military service together with Rudolph: the last, very much against the will of a young woman to whom he was engaged. Charlotte herself, however, became reconciled to this arrangement, when she saw that her objections availed nothing against Rudolph's resolution, and heard her lover describe in the most flattering colours his own return to her arms in the uniform of an officer: for that his distinguished courage must carry him in the very first campaign to the rank of lieutenant, was as evident to his own mind as that he could not possibly fall on the field of battle.
The three friends were fortunate enough to be placed in the same company. But in the first battle, Werl and Theiler were stretched lifeless by Rudolph's side: Werl, by a musket ball through his heart, and Theiler by a cannon shot which took off his head.
Soon after this event Rudolph himself returned home: but how? Not, as he had fondly anticipated, in the brilliant decorations of a distinguished officer; but as a prisoner in close custody in a transport of youthful anger he had been guilty, in company with two others, of insubordination and mutiny.
The court-martial sentenced them to death. The judges, however, were so favourably impressed by their good conduct whilst under confinement, that they would certainly have recommended them unconditionally to the royal mercy, if it had not been deemed necessary to make an example. However, the sentence was so far mitigated, that on one of the three was to be shot. And which was he? That point was reserved in suspense until the day of execution, when it was to be decided by the cast of the dice.
As the fatal day grew near, a tem
pest of passionate grief assailed the three prisoners. One of them was agitated by the tears of his father; the "second by the sad situation of a sickly wife and two children. The third, Rudolph, in case the lot fell upon him, would be summoned to part not only with his life, but also with a young and blooming bride, that lay nearer to his heart than anything else in the world. "Ah!" said he on the evening before the day of final decision, "Ah! if but this once I could secure a lucky throw of the dice !" And scarce was the wish uttered, when his comrade Werl, whom he had seen fall by his side in the field of battle, stepped into his cell. "So, brother Schroll, I suppose you didn't much expect to see me?"
“No, indeed, did I not—” exclaimed Rudolph in consternation; for in fact, on the next day after the battle, he had seen with his own eyes this very Werl committed to the grave.
"Aye, aye, it's strange enough, I allow but there are not many such : surgeons as he is that belongs to our regiment he had me dug up, and brought me round again, I'll assure you. One would think the man was a conjuror. Indeed there are many things he can do which I defy any man to explain; and to say the truth, I'm convinced he can execute impossibilities."
"Well, so let him, for aught that I care: all his art will scarcely do me any good."
think that in such cases one's first duty is to oneself."
"Who knows,brother? who knows? The man is in this town at this very time; and for old friendship's sake I've just spoken to him about you: and he has promised me a lucky throw of the dice that shall deliver you from all danger."
"Ah!" said the dejected Rudolph, "but even this would be of little service to me."
"Aye, but just consider; one of my comrades has an old father to maintain, the other a sick wife with two children."
"Schroll, Schroll, if your young bride were to hear you, I fancy she wouldn't think herself much flattered. Does poor Charlotte deserve that you should not bestow a thought on her and her fate? A dear young creature that places her whole happiness in you, has nearer claims (I think) upon your consideration than an old dotard with one foot in the grave, or a wife and two children that are nothing at all to you. Ah! what a deal of good might you do in the course of a long life with your Charlotte !-So then, you really are determined to reject the course which I point out to you? Take care, Schroll! If you disdain my offer, and the lot should chance to fall upon you,
take care lest the thought of a young bride whom you have betrayed, take care, I say, lest this thought should add to the bitterness of death when you come to kneel down on the sand-hill. However, I've given you advice sufficient: and have discharged my conscience. Look to it yourself: and farewell !"
"Why, how so ?" asked the other. "How so? why, because-even if there were such dice (a matter I very much dispute)-yet I could never allow myself to turn aside, by black arts, any bad luck designed for myself upon the heads of either of my comrades."
"Now this, I suppose, is what you call being noble? But excuse me if I
"Stay, brother, a word or two;" said Rudolph, who was powerfully impressed by the last speech, and the picture of domestic happiness held up before him, which he had often dallied with in thought both when alone and in company with Charlotte ;—" stay a moment. Undoubtedly, I do not deny that I wish for life, if I could receive it a gift from heaven: and that is not impossible. Only 1 would not willingly have the guilt upon my conscience of being the cause of misery to another. However, if the man you speak of can tell, I should be glad that you would ask him upon which of us three the lot of death will fall. Or-stay: don't ask him," said Rudolph, sighing deeply.
"I have already asked him," was the answer.
"Ah! have you so? And it is after his reply that you come to me with this counsel."