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fell in with the Pompadour privateer, of forty guns, while we had but twenty-three; so to it we went, yard-arm and yard-arm. The fight lasted for three hours; and I verily believe we should have taken the Frenchman, had we but had some more men left behind; but, unfortunately, we lost all our men just as we were going to get the victory.
"I was once more in the power of the French; and I believe it would have gone hard with me had I been brought back to Brest: but, by good fortune, we were retaken by the Viper. I had almost forgot to tell you that, in that engagement, I was wounded in two places: I lost four fingers of the left hand; and my leg was shot off. If I had had the good fortune to have lost my leg and the use of my hand on board a king's ship, and not aboard a privateer, I should have been entitled to clothing and maintenance during the rest of my life. But that was not my chance; one man is born with a silver spoon in his mouth, and another with a wooden ladle. However, blessed be God! I enjoy good health, and will for ever love liberty, and Old England. Liberty, Property, and Old England for ever, huzza!"
Thus saying he limped off, leaving me in admiration at his intrepidity and content. Nor could I avoid acknowledging that an habitual acquaintance with misery serves better than philosophy to teach us to despise it.
THE INFANT BRIDAL.
MRS. ACTON TINDAL.
[Richard Duke of York, second son of Edward IV., was married to Anne Mowbray, Duchess of Norfolk in her own right. The bridegroom was not five years old, and the bride scarcely three. The ceremony was performed in St. Stephen's Chapel, A.D. 1477.]
THE sunbeams of the early day
Streamed through the lattice grim,
And passed along a gorgeous band
The bravest best were there.
But slowly moved the bright array,
Two blooming children led the way
Half pleased and half surprised they seemed,
Love mixed with pity fondly gleamed,
A fear, for them who knew no fear,
They view life's future through a tear
The bridegroom bore a royal crown
That like a golden veil fell down
The bearing of the noble child
Beneath that brow so smooth and mild
All coyly went the sweet babe-bride,
Then words of import strange and deep
And some had turned away to weep
Their steady gaze those children meek
Calm in the blest simplicity
That never woke to doubt; Calm in the holy purity
Whose presence bars shame out! Then turned they from each troubled brow And many a downcast eye,
And gazed upon each other now
And nestled close, with looks of love,
Such ties as seraphs bind above
Then smiled they on their grand array
With such prophetic gloom,
Scarce had the blossoms died away
Her marriage garlands o'er her bier,
A life as short, and darker doom,
One stifling pang amid his sleep
A garland floats around the throne,
Of such fair earth-buds, newly blown,
A melody most pure and sweet
And blossoms o'er the mercy seat,
IN A MAELSTRO M.
"IT is now within a few days of three years since what I am going to tell you occurred. It was a day which the people of this part of the world will never forget; for it was one in which blew the most terrible hurricane that ever came out of the heavens.
"The three of us-my two brothers and myself— had crossed over to the islands about two o'clock, P.M., and had soon nearly loaded the smack with fine fish, which, we all remarked, were more plenty that day than we had ever known them. It was just seven, by my watch, when we weighed and started for home, so as to make the worst of the Strom at slack water, which we knew would be at eight.
"We set out with a fresh wind on our starboard quarter, and for some time spanked along at a great rate, never dreaming of danger, for indeed we saw not the slightest reason to apprehend it. All at once we were taken aback by a breeze from over Helseggen. This was most unusual-something that had never happened to us before; and I began to feel a little uneasy without exactly knowing why. We put the boat on the wind, but could make no headway at all for the eddies; and I was upon the point of proposing to return to the anchorage when, looking astern, we saw the whole horizon covered with a singular copper-coloured cloud that rose with the most amazing velocity.
"In the meantime, the breeze that had headed us off fell away, and we were dead becalmed, drifting about in every direction. This state of things, however, did not last long enough to give us time to think about it. In less than a minute the storm was upon us-in less than two the sky was entirely overcast; and what with this and the driving spray, it became suddenly so dark that we could not see each other in the smack.
"Such a hurricane as then blew it is folly to attempt describing. The oldest seaman in Norway never experienced anything like it. We had let our sails go by the run before it cleverly took us; but, at the first puff, both our masts went by the board as if they had been sawed off the mainmast taking with it my youngest brother, who had lashed himself to it for safety.
"Our boat was the lightest feather of a thing that ever sat upon water. It had a complete flush deck, with only a small hatch near the bow; and this hatch it had always been our custom to batten down when about to cross the Strom, by way of precaution against the chopping seas. But for this circumstance we should have foundered at once; for we lay entirely buried for some moments. How my elder brother escaped destruction I cannot say, for I never had an opportunity of ascertaining. For my part, as soon as I had let the