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We rested ; and the verse was verse divine ! Fell from beneath a starry diadem ;
Before the Churcn,
Each in his hand bearing his cap and plume, Over the lantern at the prow, and cried,
And, as he walk'd, with modest dignily
Folding his scarlet mantle, his tabarro.
They join, they enter in, and, up the aisle
Led by the full-voiced choir in bright procession, And with her fled, scattering, the sons of Pleasure. Range round the altar. In his vestments there
The Patriarch stands; and, while the anthem flows, Suar after star sbot by, or, meteor-like, Cross'd me and vanish'd lost at once among
Who can look on unmoved ?-mothers in secret Those hundred Isles that tower majestically,
Rejoicing in the beauty of their daughters,
Sons in the thought of making them their own; That rise abruptly from the water-mark, Not with rough crag, but marble, and the work
And they-array'd in youth and innocence, Of noblest architects. I linger'd still ;
Their beauty heighten'd by their hopes and fears. Nor struck my threshold, till the hour was come
At length the rite is ending. All fall down And past, when, flitting home in the grey light,
In earnest prayer, all of all ranks together;
And, stretching out his hands, the holy man
Proceeds to give the general bencdiction;
When hark, a din of voices from without, Shut; and, all terror, all perplexity,
And shricks and groans and outcries as in battle. Now by her lover urged, now by her love,
And lo, the door is burst, the curtain rent,
And armed ruffians, robbers from the deep,
Savage, uncouth, led on by Barbarigo,
And his six brothers in their coats of steel,
Are standing on the threshold! Statue-like,
Each with his sabre up, in act to strike; Came from bis islet, bringing o'er the waves
Then, as at once recovering from the spell, His wife and little one; the husbandman
Rush forward to the altar, and as soon
Are gone again-amid no clash of arms
Where are they now?-plowing the distant waves Throng d her three hundred bridges ; the grave Standing triumphant. To the east they go,
Their sails all set, and they upon the deck
Steering for Istria; their accursed barks
(Well are they known, the galliot and the galley),(57) Hurrying along. For, as the custom was,
Freighted with all that gives to life its value !
The richest argosies were poor to them!
Now might you see the matrons running wild Were on that day to solemnize their nuptials.
Along the beach ; the men half-arm'd and arming,
One with a shield, one with a casque and spear; At doon, a distant murmur through the crowd, One with an axe hewing the mooring-chain Rising and rolling on, announced their coming ; Of some old pinnace. Not a raft, a plank, And never from the first was to be seen
But on that day was drifting. In an hour Such splendor or such beauty. (54) Two and two
Half Venice was afloat. But long before, (The richest tapestry unroll'd before them),
Frantic with grief and scorning all control,
Each having sworn, and by the holy rood,
And from the tower
Her flag St. Mark's.-And now she turns the point,
Over the waters like a sea-bird flying! 1 Premi o sta. Ha, 't is the same, 't is theirs! from stern to prow
Hung with green boughs, she comes, she comes, re- "T is Foscari, the Doge. And there is one, storing
A young man, lying at his feet, stretch'd out All that was lost.
In torture. "T is his son, his only one; Coasting, with narrow search, | "T is Giacomo, the blessing of his age, Friuli-like a tiger in his spring,
(Say, has he lived for this ?) accused of murder, They had surprised the Corsairs where they lay The murder of the Senator Donato. Sharing the spoil in blind security
Last night the proofs, if proofs they are, were dropt
Must sit and look on a beloved Son
Twice, to die in peace, Breathing a little, in his look retain'd
To save a falling house, and turn the hearts The fierceness of his soul.
Of his fell Adversaries, those who now,
An oath exacting, never more to ask it;
Such the refinement of their cruelty,
Art thou not guilty?"_" No! Indeed I am not!" Each in her glittering veil ; and on the deck, But all is unavailing. In that Court As on a burnish'd throne, they glided by ;
Groans are confessions; Patience, Fortitude, No window or balcony but adorn'd
The work of Magic; and, released, upheld, With hangings of rich texture, not a roof
For Condemnation, from his Father's lips But cover'd with beholders, and the air
He hears the sentence, “ Banishment to Candia: Vocal with joy. Onward they went, their oars Death, if he leaves it." Moving in concert with the harmony,
And the bark sets sail;
Gone in the dead of night-unseen of any-
He would indulge in weeping.
Like a ghost,
Day after day, year after year, he haunts
An ancient rampart, that o'erhangs the sea ; Let us lift up the curtain, and observe, Gazing on vacancy, and hourly starting What passes in that chamber. Now a sigh, To answer to the watch- -Alas, how changed And now a groan, is heard. Then all is still. From him, the mirror of the Youth of Venice, Twenty are sitting as in judgment there ; (61) In whom the slightest thing, or whim or chance, Men who have served their country, and grown grey Did he but wear his doublet so and so, In governments and distant embassies,
All follow'd; at whose nuptials, when at length Men eminent alike in war and peace;
He won that maid at once the fairest, noblcst, (62) Such as in effigy shall long adorn
A daughter of the House of Contarini, The walls of Venice to show what she has been! That House as old as Venice, now among Their garb is black, and black the arras is, Its ancestors in monumental brass And sad the general aspect. Yet their looks Numbering eight Doges—to convey her home, Are calm, are cheerful; nothing there like grief, The Bucentaur went forth; and thrice the Sun Nothing or harsh or cruel. Sull that noise, Shone on the Chivalry, that, front to front, That low and dismal moaning.
And blaze on blaze reflecting, met and ranged
Half withdrawn, To tournay in St. Mark's. A little to the left, sits one in crimson,
But lo, at last, A venerable man, fourscore and upward.
Messengers come. He is recall'd : his heart Cold drops of sweat stand on his furrow'd brow. Leaps at the tidings. He embarks : the boat His hands are clench'd; his eyes half-shut and glazed ; Springs to the oar, and back again he goes His shrunk and wither'd limbs rigid as marble. Into that very Chamber! there to lie
In his old resting-place, the bed of torture; Affection, kindness, the sweet offices
Bringing a stain on those who gave him life,
On those, alas, now worse than fatherless But now he comes, convicted of a crime To be proclaim'd a ruffian, a night-stabber, Great by the laws of Venice. Night and day, He on whom none before had breathed reproachBrooding on what he had been, what he was, He lived but to disprove it. That hope lost, T was more than he could bear. His longing fits Death follow'd. From the hour he went, he spoke Thicken'd upon him. His desire for home Became a madness; and, resolved to go,
And in his dungeon, when he laid him down, If but to die, in his despair he writes
He sunk to rise no more. Oh, if there be A letter to Francesco, Duke of Milan,
Justice in Heaven, and we are assured there is, Soliciting his influence with the State,
A day must come of ample Retribution!
Then was thy cup, old Man, full to o'erflowing. And am prepared to suffer as I ought.
But thou wert yet alive; and there was one, But let me, let me, if but for an instant
The soul and spring of all that Enmity, (Ye must consent-for all of you are sons, Who would not leave thee; fastening on thy flank, Most of you husbands, fathers), let me first Hungering and thirsting, still unsatisfied; Indolge the natural feelings of a man,
One of a name illustrious as thine own! And, ere I die, if such my sentence be,
One of the Ten! one of the Invisible Three! (64) Press to my heart ('t is all I ask of you)
'Twas Loredano. My wife, my children—and my aged mother
When the whelps were gone, Say, is she yet alive ?"
He would dislodge the Lion from his den;
And, leading on the pack he long had led,
His incapacity and nothingness ;
In a hall Calling a Father's sorrows in his chamber
He was deposed,
His robes stript off, his ring, that ancient symbol, To meet him, and to part with him for ever! Broken before him. But now nothing moved
The meekness of his soul. All things alike! Time and their heavy wrongs had changed them all; Among the six that came with the decree, Him most! Yet when the Wife, the Mother look'd Foscari saw one he knew not, and inquired Again, 't was he himself, 't was Giacomo,
“I am the son of Marco Memmo." Their only hope, and trust, and consolation! “Ah,” he replied, “ thy father was my friend." And all clung round him, weeping bitterly; Weeping the more, because they wept in vain. And now he goes. “It is the hour and past.
I have no business here."—" But wilt thou not Unnerved, unsettled in his mind from long Avoid the gazing crowd? That way is private." And exquisite pain, he sobs aloud and cries “No! as I enter'd, so will I retire." Kissing the old Man's cheek, “ Help me, my Father! And, leaning on his staff, he left the Palace, Let me, I pray thee, live once more among you:
His residence for four-and-thirty years, Let me go home.”—“My Son," returns the Doge, By the same staircase he came up in splendor, Mastering awhile his grief,“ if I may still The staircase of the Giants. Turning round, Call thee my Son, if thou art innocent,
When in the court below, he stopt and said As I would fain believe," but, as he speaks, My merits brought me hither. I depart, He falls, "submit without a murmur."
Driven by the malice of my Enemies."
Night, Then through the crowd withdrew, poor as he came That to the World brought revelry, to them And in his gondola went off, unfollow'd Brought only food for sorrow. Giacomo
But by the sighs of them that dared not speak. Embark'd—to die; sent to an early grave For thee, Erizzo, whose death-bed confession,
This journey was his last. When the bell rang, "He is most innocent! 'T was I who did it!" Next day, announcing a new Doge to Venice, Camne when he slept in peace. The ship, that saila It found him on his knees before the altar, (65) Swift as the winds with his recall to Honor, Clasping his aged hands in eamest prayer; Bore back a lifeless corse. Generous as brave, And there he died. Ere half its task was done,
It rang his knell.
Such as a shipwreck'd man might hope to build, But whence the deadly hate Urged by the love of home when I descended That caused all this the hate of Loredano ? Two long, long days' silence, suspense on board, It was a legacy his Father left him,
It was to offer at thy fount, Valclusa,
Or the fantastic root of some old fig-tree,
That drinks the living waters as they stream Studying revenge! listening alone to those Over their emerald-bed ; and could I now Who talk'd of vengeance ; grasping by the hand Neglect to visit Arqua, (69) where, at last, Those in their zeal (and none, alas, were wanting) When he had done and settled with the world, Who came to tell him of another Wrong,
When all the illusions of his Youth were fiod, Done or imagined. When his father died, Indulged perhaps too long, cherish'd too fondly, 'Twas whisper'd in his ear, “He died by poison !" He came for the conclusion? Half-way up He wrote it on the tomb ('t is there in marble) He built his house, (70) whence as by stealıh he caught, And in his ledger-book-(66) among his debtors Among the hills, a glimpse of busy life, Enter'd the name “FRANCESCO Foscari,"
That soothed, not stirr'd.—But knock, and enter in. And added, “ For the murder of my Father." This was his chamber. 'Tis as when he left it; Leaving a blank—to be fill'd up hereafter.
As if he now were busy in his garden. When Foscari's noble heart at length gave way, And this his closet. Here he sate and read. He took the volume from the shelf again
This was his chair; and in it, unobserved, Calmly, and with his pen fill'd up the blank, Reading, or thinking of his absent friends, Inscribing, “He has paid me."
He pass'd away as in a quiet slumber.
Ye who sit, Brooding from day to day, from day to day
Peace to this region! Peace to all who dwell here! Chewing the bitter cud, and starting up
They know his value-every coming step, As though the hour was come to whet your fangs,
That gathers round the children from their play, And, like the Pisan,' gnaw the hairy scalp
Would tell them if they knew not.—But could aught, Of him who had offended-if ye must,
Ungentle or ungenerous, spring up Sit and brood on; but oh! forbear to teach
Where he is sleeping ; where, and in an age
Of savage warfare and blind bigotry,
Leading to better things?
If ever you should come to Modena,
Tassoni's bucket (in its chain it hangs, (72)
Dwelt in of old by one of the Orsini,
And look awhile upon a picture there. Anxious by any act, while yet they could,
"Tis of a Lady in her earliest youth, To catch a ray of glory by reflection ; And from that hour have kindred spirits flock’d (67) Done by Zampieri (73)—but by whom I care noi.
The last of that illustrious family ;
He, who observes itere he passes on,
Gazes his fill, and comes and comes again,
That he may call it up, when for away. Its vineyards of such great and old renown, (68) She sits, inclining forward as to speak, Its castles, each with some romantic tale,
Her lips half-open, and her finger up, Vanishing fast-the pilot at the stern,
As though she said “ Beware!" her vest of gold He who had steer'd so long, standing aloft,
Broider'd with flowers, and clasp'd from head iu fool, His eyes on the white breakers, and his hands An emerald-stone in every golden clusp; On what at once served him for oar and rudder, And on her brow, fairer than alabaster, A huge misshapen plank-the bark itself
A coronet of pearls. Frail and uncouth, launch'd to return no more,
But then her face,
Su lovely, yet so arch, so full of mirth,
it haunts me still, though many a year has iled, When a spring-lock, that lay in ambush there, Like some wild melody!
Fasten'd her down for ever!
BOLOGNA Bat richly carved by Antony of Trent
'Twas night; the noise and bustle of the day With scripture-stories from the Life of Christ; Were o'er. The mountebank no longer wrought A chest that came from Venice, and had held Miraculous cures—he and his stage were gone; "The ducal robes of some old Ancestor
And he who, when the crisis of his tale That by the way—it may be true or false Came, and all stood breathless with hope and fear, But don't forget the picture; and you will not, Sent round his cap; and he who thrumm'd his wire When you have heard the tale they told me there. And sang, with pleading look and plaintive strain
Melting the passenger. Thy thousand cries," She was an only child-her name Ginevra, So well portray'd and by a son of thine, The joy, the pride of an indulgent Father ; Whose voice had swellid the hubbub in his youth, And in her fifteenth year became a bride,
Were hush'd, Bologna ; silence in the streets, Marrying an only son, Francesco Doria,
The squares, when hark, the clattering of fleet hoofs' Her playmate from her birth, and her first love. And soon a courier, posting as from far,
Housing and holster, boot and belted coat Jast as she looks there in her bridal dress,
And doublet, stain'd with many a various soil, She was all gentleness, all gaiety,
Stopt and alighted. 'Twas where hangs aloft Her pranks the favorite theme of every tongue.
That ancient sign, the pilgrim, welcoming But now the day was come, the day, the hour;
All who arrive there, all perhaps save those Now, frowning, smiling, for the hundredth time,
Clad like himself, with staff and scallop-shell, The nurse, that ancient lady, preach'd decorum;
Those on a pilgrimage: and now approach'd And, in the lustre of her youth, she gave
Wheels, through the lofty porticoes resounding, Her hand, with her heart in it, to Francesco.
Arch beyond arch, a shelter or a shade
And, ere the man had half his story done,
Mine host received the Master-one long used When all sate down, the Bride herself was wanting. To sojourn among strangers, everywhere Nar was she to be found! Her Father cried,
(Go where he would, along the wildest track) T'is but to make a trial of our love!”
Flinging a charm that shall not soon be lost, And fill'd his glass lo all; but his hand shook,
And leaving footsteps to be traced by those And soon from guest to guest the panic spread.
Who love the haunts of Genius; one who saw, 'Twas but that instant she had left Francesco,
Observed, nor shunn'd the busy scenes of life, Laughing and looking back, and flying still,
But mingled not, and, 'mid the din, the stir, Hier ivory-tooth imprinted on his finger.
Lived as a separate Spirit. But now, alas, she was not to be found;
Much had pass'd Nor from that hour could anything be guess'd,
Since last we parted ; and those five short years— But that she was not !
Much had they told! His clustering locks were turn'd Weary of his life,
Grey; nor did aught recall the Youth that swam Francesco flew to Venice, and, embarking,
From Sestos to Abydos. Yet his voice, Flug it away in battle with the Turk.
Still it was sweet; still from his eye the thought Orsini lived_and long might you have seen
Flash'd lightning-like, nor linger'd on the way, An old man wandering as in quest of something,
Waiting for words. Far, far into the night Something he could not find-he knew not what.
We sate, conversing—no unwelcome hour, When he was gone, the house remained awhile
The hour we met; and, when Aurora rose, Silent and tenantless-then went to strangers.
Rising, we climbed the rugged Apennine. Full fifty years were past, and all forgotten, Well I remember how the golden sun When on an idle day, a day of search
Fili'd with its beams the unfathomable gulfs, Mid the old lumber in the Gallery,
As on we travellid, and along the ridge, That mouldering chest was noticed; and 't was said 'Mid groves of cork and cistus and wild fig, By one as young, as thoughtless as Ginevra, His motley household came-Not last nor least, "Why not remove it from its lurking-place?" Battista, who upon the moonlight-sea "T' was done as soon as said; but on the way Of Venice, had so ably, zcalously It borst, it fell; and lo, a skeleton,
Served, and, at parting, flung his oar away
Had worn so long that honorable badge,a
1 See the Cries of Bologna, as drawn by Annibal Carracci. Engraven with a name, the name of both,
He was of very humble origin; and, to correct bis brother's "Ginevra."
vanity, once went him a portrait of their father, the tailor, There then had she found a grave!
threading his needle. Within that chest had she conceal'd herself,
2 The principal gondolier, il fante di poppa, was almost al
ways in the confidence of his master, and employed on occaFlanering with joy, the happiest of the happy;
sions that required judgment and address.