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6

ORSINI lived; and long was to be seen
An old man wandering as in quest of something,
Something he could not find-he knew not what.
When he was gone, the house remained awhile
Silent and tenantless—then went to strangers.

Full fifty years were past, and all forgot,
When on an idle day, a day of search
Mid the old lumber in the Gallery,
That mouldering chest was noticed ; and 'twas said
By one as young, as thoughtless as GINEVRA,
• Why not remove it from its lurking place ?
'Twas done as soon as said; but on the way
It burst, it fell; and lo, a skeleton,
With here and there a pearl, an emerald-stone,
A golden clasp, clasping a shred of gold.
All else had perished-save a nuptial ring,
And a small seal, her mother's legacy,
Engraven with a name, the name of both,
· GINEVRA.'— There then had she found a grave!
Within that chest had she concealed herself,
Fluttering with joy, the happiest of the happy ;
When a spring-lock, that lay in ambush there,
Fastened her down for ever!

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'Twas night; the noise and bustle of the day
Were o'er. The mountebank no longer wrought
Miraculous cures—he and his stage were gone;
And he who, when the crisis of his tale
Came, and all stood breathless with hope and fear,
Sent round his cap; and he who thrummed his wire
And sang, with pleading look and plaintive strain

Melting the passenger. Thy thousand Cries,*
So well pourtrayed, and by a son of thine,
Whose voice had swelled the hubbub in his youth,
Were hushed, BOLOGNA, silence in the streets,
The squares, when hark, the clattering of fleet hoofs;
And soon a Courier, posting as from far,
Housing and holster, boot and belted coat
And doublet, stained with many a various soil,
Stopt and alighted. 'Twas where hangs aloft
That ancient sign, the pilgrim, welcoming
All who arrive there, all perhaps save those
Clad like himself, with staff and scallop-shell,
Those on a pilgrimage. And now approached
Wheels, through the lofty porticoes resounding,
Arch beyond arch, a shelter or a shade
As the sky changes. To the gate they came ;
And, ere the man had half his story done,
Mine host received the Master-one long used
To sojourn among strangers, every where
(Go where he would, along the wildest track)

* See the Cries of Bologna, as drawn by Annibal Carracci. He was of very humble origin; and, to correct his brother's vanity, once. sent him a portrait of their father, the tailor, threading his needle.

Flinging a charm that shall not soon be lost,
And leaving footsteps to be traced by those
Who love the haunts of Genius; one who saw,
Observed, nor shunned the busy scenes of life,
But mingled not, and mid the din, the stir,
Lived as a separate Spirit.

Much had passed
Since last we parted; and those five short years-
Much had they told! His clustering locks were turned
Grey; nor did aught recall the Youth that swam
From Sestos to ABYDOS. Yet his voice,
Still it was sweet ; still from his

eye

the thought
Flashed lightning-like, nor lingered on the way,
Waiting for words. Far, far into the night
We sat, conversing—no unwelcome hour,
The hour we met; and, when Aurora rose,
Rising, we climbed the rugged Apennine.

Well I remember how the golden sun
Filled with its beams the unfathomable gulfs,
As on we travelled, and along the ridge,
Mid groves of cork and cistus and wild-fig,
His motley household came-Not last nor least,
Battista, who, upon the moonlight-sea
Of Venice, had so ably, zealously,

Served, and, at parting, thrown his oar away
To follow through the world; who without stain
Had worn so long that honourable badge,
The gondolier's, in a Patrician House
Arguing unlimited trust.*- Not last nor least,
Thou, tho' declining in thy beauty and strength,
Faithful MORETTO, to the latest hour
Guarding his chamber-door, and now along
The silent, sullen strand of MissolONGHI
Howling in grief.--He had just left that Place
Of old renown, once in the ADRIAN seat
RAVENNA ! where, from DANTE's sacred tomb
He had so oft, as many a verse declares,
Drawn inspiration; where, at twilight-time,
Thro' the pine-forest wandering with loose rein,
Wandering and lost, he had so oft beheld
(What is not visible to a Poet's eye?)
The spectre-knight, the hell-hounds and their prey,
The chase, the slaughter, and the festal mirth

* The principal gondolier, il fante di poppa, was almost always in the confidence of his master, and employed on occasions that required judgment and address. + • Adrianum mare.'-Cic.

See the Prophecy of Dante.

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