gradual shading away of zones and alternatioa of seasons that the vigor and variety of mankind were attributable.

I have asked where and when were the good old times ? This earth of ours has been spinning about in space, great philosophers tell us, some few hundred millions of years. We are not very familiar with our predecessors on this continent. For the present, the oldest inhabitant must be represented here by the inan of Natchez, whose bones were unearthed not long ago under the Mississippi bluff's in strata which were said to argue him to be at least one hundred thousand years old. Yet he is a mere modern, a parvenu on this planet, if we are to trust illustrious teachers of science, compared with the men whose bones and whose implements have been found in high mountain-valleys and gravel-pits of Europe ; while these again are thought by the same authorities to be descendants of races which flourished

many thousands of years before, and whose relics science is confidently expecting to discover, although the icy sea had once ingulfed thein and their dwelling-places.

We of to-day have no filial interest in the man of Natchez. He was no ancestor of ours, nor have he and his descendants left traces along the dreary track of their existence to induce a desire to claim relationship with them.

We are Americans; but yesterday we were Europeans, - Netherlanders, Saxons, Normans, Swabians, Celts; and the day before yesterday, Asiatics, Mongolians, what you will.

The orbit of civilization, so far as our perishing records enable us to trace it, seems preordained froin East to West. China, India, Palestine, Egypt, Greece, Rome, are successively lighted up as the majestic orb of day moves over them ; and as he advances still farther through his storied and mysterious zodiac, we behold the shadows of evening as surely falling on th lands which he leaves behind him.

Man still reeled on, - falling, rising again, staggering forward with hue and cry at his heels, a wounded felon daring to escape from the prison to which the grace of God had inexorably doomed him. And still there was progress. Besides the sword, two other instruments grew every day more potent, the

pen The power of the pen soon created a stupendous monopoly. Clerks obtained privilege of murder because of their learning; a Norman king gloried in the appellation of "fine clerk," because he could spell ; the sons of serfs and washerwomen became high pontiffs, put their

and the purse.



feet on the necks of emperors, through the might of education, and appalled the souls of tyrants with their weird anathemas. Naturally, the priests kept the talisman of learning to themselves. How should education help them to power and pelf, if the people could participate in the mystic spell ? The icy Deadhand of the Church, ever extended, was filled to overflowing by trembling baron and superstitious hind.

But there was another power steadily augmenting, - the magic purse of Fortunatus with its clink of perennial gold. Commerce changed clusters of hovels, cowering for protection under feudal castles, into powerful cities. Burghers wrested or purchased liberties from their lords and masters.

And still man struggled on. An experimenting friar, fond of chemistry, in one corner of Europe, put niter, sulphur, and charcoal together ; a sexton or doctor, in another obscure nook, carved letters on blocks of wood; † and lo! there were explosions shaking the solid earth, and causing the iron-clad man on horseback to reel in his saddle.

It was no wonder that Dr. Faustus was supposed to have sold his soul to the fiend. Whence but from devilish alliance could he have derived such power to strike down the grace of God ?

Speech, the alphabet, Mount Sinai, Egypt, Greece, Rome, Nazareth, the wandering of the nations, the feudal system, Magna Charta, gunpowder, printing, the Reformation, the mariner's compass, America, — here are some of the great landmarks of human motion.

As we puse for a moment's rest, after our rapid sweep through the eons and the centuries, have we not the right to record proof of man's progress since the days of the rhinoceros-eaters of Bedfordshire, of the man of Natchez?

* The discorery of gunpowder by Bertholdus, a German monk, in 1320.

+ GUTENBERG, born in Germany about 1400, is generally called the inventor of printing. He was the first to print from letters cut on blocks of wood and metal. He was associated with Dr. Faustus, mentioned below. Having printed off numbers of copies of the Bible, to imitate those which were commonly sold in manuscript, Hayden says Dr. Faustus undertook the sale of them at Paris where printing was then unknown. As he sold his copies for sixty crowns, while the scribes demanded fire hundred, he created universal astonishment; but when he produced copies as fast as they were wanted, and lowered the price to thirty crowns, all Paris was agitated. The uniformity of the copies increased the wonder : informations were given to the police against him as a magician, and his lodgings being searched and a great number of copies being found, they were seized. The red ink with wlich they were embellished was supposed to be his blood, and it was seriously adjudged that he was in league with the Devil; and if he had not fled, he would have shared the fate of those whom superstitious judges condemned in those days for witchcraft, A. D. 1460. The career of Dr. Faustus has formed the subject of numerous dramas, romances, and poenis, the most notable of which are Goethe's Faust, and the celebrated opera of that nanie.



And for details and detached scenes in the general phantasmagoria, which has been ever shifting before us, we may seek for illustration, instruction, or comfort in any age or land where authentic record tan be found. We may take a calm survey of passionate, democratic Greece in her great civil war through the terse, judicial narrative of Thucydides ; * we may learn to loathe despotism in that marvelous portrait-gallery of crime which the somber and terrible Tacitust has bequeathed; we may cross the yawning abysses and dreary deserts which lie between two civilizations over that stately viaduct of a thousand arches which the great hand of Gibbon has constructed ; we may penetrate to the inmost political and social heart of England, during a period of nine years, by help of the magic wand of Macaulay; we inay linger in the stately portico to the unbuilt dome which the daring genius of Buckle consumed his life in devising ; we may yield to the sweet fascinations which ever dwell in the picturesque pages of Prescott ; we may investigate rules, apply and ponder examples : but the detail of history is essentially à blank, and nothing could be more dismal than its pursuit, unless the mind be filled by a broad view of its general scheme.



TIe besieged city was at its last gasp. The burghers had been in a state of uncertainty for many days; being aware that the fleet had set forth for their relief, but knowing full well the thousand obstacles which it had to surmount. They had guessed its progress by the illumination from the blazing villages, they had heard its salvos of artillery on its arrival at North Aa ; but since then all had been dark and mournful again, — hope and fear, in sickening alternation,

* THUCYDIDES. One of the most illustrious of the Greek historians, born 471 B. c. His celebrity rests upon his unfinished History of the Peloponnesian War. (See Grote's History of Greece.)

† Tacitus. A celebrated Roman historian, born about 55 A. D. His reputation is chiefly founded on his Annals, in sixteen books, which record the history of the Roman Empire from the death of Augustus A. D. 14 to tlie death of Nero A. D. 68. Excepting the seventlı, eighth, nintlı, and tentli books, the work still exists.

I Tlie extract is from Mr. Motley's brilliant history, The Rise of the Dutch Republic.

§ LEYDEN, now a flourishing manufacturing town of South Holland. It was besieged by the Spaniards in 1574, when they tried to subdue the Netherlands under their yoke. The siege began on 31st October, 1573, and ended on 31 October, 1574. It was relieved by the dikes being cut, and the sea let in on the Spanislı works. Fifteen hundred Spaniards were slain or drowned. The University of Leyden was erected as a memorial of this gallant defense and happy deliver

The relief of Leyden was a fatal blow to Spanish power in the Netherlands.


distracting every breast. They knew that the wind was unfavorable, and at the dawn of each day every eye was turned wistfully to the vanes of the steeples. So long as the easterly breeze prevailed, they felt, as they anxiously stood on towers and house-tops, that they must look in vain for the welcome ocean.

Yet, while thus patiently waiting, they were literally starving; for even the misery endured at Haarlem* had not reached that depth and intensity of agony to which Leyden was now reduced. Bread, maltcake, horse-flesh, had entirely disappeared; dogs, cats, rats, and other vermin were esteemed luxuries. A small number of cows, kept as long as possible for their milk, still remained; but a few were killed from day to day, and distributed in minute portions, hardly sufficient to support life, among the famishing population. Starving wretches swarmed daily around the shambles where these cattle were slaughtered, contending for any morsel which might fall, and lapping eagerly the blood as it ran along the pavement; while the hides, chopped and boiled, were greedily devoured.

Women and children, all day long, were seen searching gutters and elsewhere for morsels of food, which they disputed fiercely with the famishing dogs. The green leaves were stripped from the trees, every living herb was converted into human food; but these expedients could not avert starvation. The daily mortality was frightful. Infants starved to death on the maternal breasts which famine had parched and withered; mothers dropped dead in the streets, with their dead children in their arms.

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In many a house the watchmen, in their rounds, found a whole family of corpses - father, mother, children side by side; for a disorder, called "the Plague," naturally engendered of hardship and famine, now came, as if in kindness, to abridge the agony of the ple. Pestilence stalked at noonday through the city, and the doomed inhabitants fell like grass beneath his scythe. From six to eight thousand human beings sank before this scourge alone; yet the people resolutely held out, women and men mutually encouraging each other to resist the entrance of their foreign foe,†- an evil more horrible than pest or famine.

* HAARLEM. Frederick, the son of Alva, starved the little garrison of Haarlem (20 miles north of Leyden) into a surrender (1573); and then, enraged at the gallant defense they had made, butchered them without mercy. When the executioners were worn out with their bloody work, he tied the three hundred citizens that remained back to back, and flung them into the sea. The Spaniards.

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Leyden was sublime in its despair. A few murmurs were, however, occasionally heard at the steadfastness of the magistrates ; and a dead body was placed at the door of the burgonaster, as a silent witness against his inflexibility. A party of the more faint-hearted even assailed the heroic Adrian Van der Werf* with threats and reproaches as he passed along the streets. A crowd håd gathered around him as he reached a triangular place in the center of the town, into which many of the principal streets emptied themselves, and upon one side of which stood the Church of St. Pancras.

There stood the burgomaster, a tall, haggard, imposing figure, with dark visage and a tranquil but commanding eye. He waved his broad-leaved felt hat for silence, and then exclaimed, in language which has been alınost literally preserved, "What woald ye, my friends? Why do ye murmur that we do not break our vows and surrender the city to the Spaniards, a fate more horrible than the agony which she now endures ? I tell


I have made an oath to hold the city; and may God give me strength to keep my oath ! I can die but once, whether by your hands, the enemy's, or by the hand of God. My own fate is indifferent to me; not so that of the city intrusted to my care.

I know that we shall starve if not soon relieved; but starvation is preferable to the dishonored death which is the only alternative. Your menaces move me not. My life is at your disposal. Here is my sword; plunge it into my breast, and divide

Aesh among you. Take

to appease your hunger, but expect no surrender so long as I remain alive."

On the 28th of September a dove flew into the city, bringing a letter from Admiral Boisot. In this despatch the position of the fleet at North Aa was described in encouraging terms, and the inhabitants were assured that, in a very few days at furthest, the longexpected relief would enter their gates.

The tempest came to their relief. A violent equinoctial gale, on the night of the 1st and 2d of October, came storming from the northwest, shifting after a few hours fully eight points, and then blowing still more violently from the southwest. The waters of the North Sea were piled in vast masses upon the southern coast of Holland, and then dashed furiously landward, the ocean rising over tho earth and sweeping with unrestrained power across the ruined dikes.

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ADRIAN VAN DER WERF, the burgomaster, or chief magistrate of Leyden. + ADMIRAL Bossot, the commander of the Dutch teet.

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