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What they revealed, and on the western shore Sleeps in a silent grove, o'erlooking thee, Beloved PARTHENOPE.

Yet here, methinks, Truth wants no ornament, in her own shape Filling the mind by turns with awe and love, By turns inclining to wild ecstasy, And soberest meditation. Here the vines Wed, each her elm, and o'er the golden grain Hang their luxuriant clusters, chequering The sunshine: where, when cooler shadows fall, And the mild moon her fairy net-work weaves, The lute, or mandoline, accompanied By many a voice yet sweeter than their own, Kindles, nor slowly; and the dance * displays The gentle arts and witcheries of love, Its hopes and fears and feignings, till the youth Drops on his knee as vanquished, and the maid, Her tambourine uplifting with a grace, Nature's and Nature's only, bids him rise.

But here the mighty Monarch underneath, He in his palace of fire, diffuses round A dazzling splendour. Here, unseen, unheard, Opening another Eden in the wild, His gifts he scatters; save, when issuing forth In thunder, he blots out the sun, the sky, And, mingling all things earthly as in scorn, Exalts the valley, lays the mountain low, Pours many a torrent from his burning lake,

* The Tarantella.

And in an hour of universal mirth,
What time the trump proclaims the festival,
Buries some capital city, there to sleep
The sleep of ages — till a plough, a spade
Disclose the secret, and the eye of day
Glares coldly on the streets, the skeletons;
Each in his place, each in his gay attire,
And eager to enjoy.

Let us go round;
And let the sail be slack, the course be slow,
That at our leisure, as we coast along,
We may contemplate, and from every scene
Receive its influence. The CUMAAN towers,
There did they rise, sun-gilt; and here thy groves,
Delicious BAIÆ. Here (what would they not?)
The masters of the earth, unsatisfied,
Built in the sea; and now the boatman steers
O'er many a crypt and vault yet glimmering,
O'er many a broad and indestructible arch,
The deep foundations of their palaces;
Nothing now heard ashore, so great the change,
Save when the sea-mew clamours, or the owl
Hoots in the temple.

What the mountainous Isle,* Seen in the South. 'Tis where a Monster dwelt, † Hurling his victims from the topmost cliff; Then, and then only merciful, so slow, So subtle were the tortures they endured. Fearing and feared he lived, cursing and cursed; And still the dungeons in the rock breathe out

* Capreæ.


Darkness, distemper. Strange, that one so vile
Should from his den strike terror through the world;
Should, where withdrawn in his decrepitude,
Say to the noblest, be they where they might,
Go from the earth!' and from the earth they went.
Yet such things were — and will be, when mankind,
Losing all virtue, lose all energy;
And for the loss incur the penalty,
Trodden down and trampled.

Let us turn the prow,
And in the track of him who went to die,*
Traverse this valley of waters, landing where
A waking dream awaits us. At a step
Two thousand years roll backward, and we stand,
Like those so long within that awful Place, t
Immovable, nor asking, Can it be?

Once did I linger there alone, till day Closed, and at length the calm of twilight came, So grateful, yet so solemn! At the fount, Just where the three ways meet, I stood and looked, ('Twas near a noble house, the house of Pansa) – And all was still as in the long, long night That followed when the shower of ashes fell, When they that sought POMPEII, sought in vain; It was not to be found. But now a ray, Bright and yet brighter, on the pavement glanced, And on the wheel-track worn for centuries, And on the stepping-stones from side to side,

* The elder Pliny. See the letter in which his Nephew relates to Tacitus the circumstances of his death. † Pompeii.

O'er which the maidens, with their water-urns,
Were wont to trip so lightly. Full and clear,
The moon was rising, and at once revealed
The name of every dweller, and his craft;
Shining throughout with an unusual lustre,
And lighting up this City of the Dead.

Mark, where within, as though the embers lived, The ample chimney-vault is dun with smoke. There dwelt a miller; silent and at rest His mill-stones now. In old companionship Still do they stand as on the day he went, Each ready for its office -- but he comes not. And here, hard by (where one in idleness Has stopt to scrawl a ship, an armed man; And in a tablet on the wall we read Of shows ere long to be) a sculptor wrought, Nor meanly; blocks, half-chiselled into life, Waiting his call. Here long, as yet attests The trodden floor, an olive-merchant drew From many an earthen jar, no more supplied ; And here from his a vintner served his guests Largely, the stain of his o’erflowing cups Fresh on the marble. On the bench, beneath, They sate and quaffed and looked on them that passed, Gravely discussing the last news from ROME.

But lo, engraven on a threshold-stone, That word of courtesy, so sacred once, HAIL! At a master's greeting we may enter. And lo, a fairy-palace ! every where As through the courts and chambers we advance, Floors of mosaic, walls of arabesque,

And columns clustering in Patrician splendour.
But hark, a footstep! May we not intrude?
And now, methinks, I hear a gentle laugh,
And gentle voices mingling as in converse !
- And now a harp-string as struck carelessly,

- along the corridor,it comes
I cannot err, a filling as of baths !
- Ah no, 'tis but a mockery of the sense,
Idle and vain! We are but where we were;
Still wandering in a City of the Dead !

And now


I DINE very often with the good old Cardinal * * and, I should add, with his cats; for they always sit at his table, and are much the gravest of the company. His beaming countenance makes us forget his age; nor did I ever see it clouded till yesterday, when, as we were contemplating the sunset from his terrace, he happened, in the course of our conversation, to allude to an affecting circumstance in his early life.

He had just left the University of PALERMO and was entering the army, when he became acquainted with a young lady of great beauty and merit, a Sicilian of a family as illustrious as his own. Living near each other, they were often together; and, at an age like theirs, friendship soon turns to love. But his father, for what reason I forget, refused his consent to the union; till, alarmed at the declining health of his son, he promised to oppose it no longer, if, after a separation of three years, they continued to love as much as ever.

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