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All mild, amid the rout profane,
The holy hermit pour'd his prayer; “Forbear with blood God's house to stain;
Revere his altar, and forbear !
“ 'The meanest brute has rights to plead,
Which, wrong’d by cruelty, or pride, Draw vengeance on the ruthless head :
Be warn’d at length, and turn aside.”
Still the Fair Horseman anxious pleads;
The Black, wild whooping, points the prey :Alas! the Earl no warning heeds,
But frantic keeps the forward way.
" Holy or not, or right or wrong,
Thy altar, and its rites, I spurn; Not sainted martyrs’ sacred song,
Not God himself, shall make me turn !”
'Twas hush'd :-One flash, of sombre glors'
With yellow tinged the forests brown;
And horror chill'd each nerve and bono.
Cold pour'd the sweat in freezing rill;
A rising wind began to sing;
Brought storm and tempest on its wing.
Earth heard the call;—her entrails rend;
From yawning rifts, with many a yell,
The misbegotten dogs of hell.
What ghastly Huntsman next arose,
Well may I guess, but dare not tell ;
His steed the swarthy hue of hell.
spurs his horse, he winds his horn, “Hark forward, forward, holla, ho !”But off, on whirlwind's pinions borne,
The stag, the hut, the hermit, go.
The Wildgrave flies o’er bush and thorn,
With many a shriek of helpless woe;
And,“ Hark away, and holla, ho !”
And horse and man, and horn and hound,
And clamour of the chase, was gone; For hoofs, and howls, and bugle-sound,
A deadly silence reign'd alone.
With wild despair's reverted eye,
Close, close behind, he marks the througs
In frantic fear he scours along:
Wild gazed the affrighted Earl around;
He strove in vain to wake his horn, In vain to call: for not a sound
Could from his anxious lips be borne.
Still, still shall last the dreadful chase,
Till time itself shall have an end;
At midnight's witching hour, ascend.
He listens for his trusty hounds;
No distant baying reach'd his ears : His courser, rooted to the ground,
The quickening spur unmindful bears.
This is the horn, and hound, and horse,
That oft the lated peasant hears;
When the wild din invades his ears.
Still dark and darker frown the shades,
Dark as the darkness of the grave; And not a sound the still invades,
Save what a distant torrent gave.
The wakeful priest oft drops a tear
For human pride, for human woe,
The infernal cry of, “ Holla, ho!”
High o'er the sinner's humbled head
At length the solemn silence broke; And, from a cloud of swarthy red,
The awful voice of thunder spoke.
“ The blessings of the evil Genii, which are curses, wers
“Oppressor of creation fair!
Apostate Spirits' harden'd tool ! Scorner of God! Scourge of the poor !
The measure of thy cup is full.
« Be chased for over through the wood;
For ever roam the affrighted wild; and let thy fate instruct the proud,
God's meanest creature is his child."
This ballad was written at the request of MR. LEWIS, to
be inserted in his “ Tales of Wonder.”] It is the third
| Published in 1801. See ante, p. 571.
in a series of four ballads, on the subject of Elementary Small thought had Count Albert on fair Rosalie, Spirits. The story is, however, partly historical ; for Small thought on his faith, or his knighthood, bad he,
is recorded, that, during the struggles of the Latin A heathenish damsel his light heart had won, kingdom of Jerusalem, a Knight-Templar, called Saint- The Soldan's fair daughter of Mount Lebanon. Alban, deserted to the Saracens, and defeated the Christians in many combats, till he was finally routed and “O Christian, brave Christian, my love wouldst thou bo, slain, in a conflict with King Baldwin, under the walls Three things must thou do ere I hearken to thee: of Jerusalem.
Our laws and our worship on thee shalt thou take;
O see you that castle, so strong and so high ?
And, last, thou shalt aid us with counsel and hand,
“ Now palmer, grey palmer, O tell unto me,
He has thrown by his helmet, and cross-handled sword, What news bring you home from the Holy Countrie ? Renouncing his knighthood, denying his Lord; And how goes the warfare by Galilee's strand ? He has ta’en the green caftan, and turban put on, And how fare our nobles, the flower of the land ?”— For the love of the maiden of fair Lebanon.
“ O well goes the warfare by Galilee's wave, And in the dread cavern, deep deep under ground, For Gilead, and Nablous, and Ramah we have; Which fifty steel gates and steel portals surround, And well fare our nobles by Mount Lebanon, He has watch'd until daybreak, but sight saw he none, For the Heathen have lost, and the Christians have Save the flame burning bright on its altar of stone.
Amazed was the Princess, the Soldan amazed, A fair chain of gold ʼmid her ringlets there hung; Sore murmur'd the priests as on Albert they gazed ; O'er the palmer's grey locks the fair chain has she They search'd all his garments, and, under his weeds, flung:
They found, and took from him, his rosary beads. “ () palmer, grey palmer, this chain be thy fee, For the news thou hast brought from the Holy Again in the cavern, deep deep under ground, Countrie.
He watch'd the lone night, while the winds whistled
round; “ And, palmer, good palmer, by Galilee's wave, Far off was their murmur, it came not more nigh, () saw ye Count Albert, the gentle and brave? The flame burn'd unmoved, and nought else did he spy. When the Crescent went back, and the Red-cross
Loud murmur’d the priests, and amazed was the King, O saw ye him foremost on Mount Lebanon ?”'
While many dark spells of their witchcraft they sing;
They search?d Albert's body, and, lo! on his breast 6 O lady, fair lady, the tree green it
Was the sign of the Cross, by his father impress’d. O lady, fair lady, the stream pure it flows; Your castle stands strong, and your hopes soar on The priests they erase it with care and with pain, high ;
And the recreant return’d to the cavern again; But, lady, fair lady, all blossomis to die.
But, as he descended, a whisper there fell:
It was his good angel, who bade him farewell! “ The green boughs they wither, the thunderbolt falls,
High bristled his hair, his heart flutter'd and beat,
O she's ta’en a horse, should be fleet at her speed;
Scarce pass’d he the archway, the threshold scarce
trode, When the winds from the four points of heaven wer:
They mado each steel portal to rattle and ring, He clench'd his set teeth, and his gauntleted hand; And, borne on the blast, came the dread Fire-King. He stretch'd, with one buffet, that Page on the strand;
As back from the stripling the broken casque rollid, Full sore rock'd the cavern whene'er he drew nigh, You might see the blue eyes, and the ringlets of gold. The fire on the altar blazed bickering and high; In volcanic explosions the mountains proclaim Short time had Count Albert in horror to stare The dreadful approach of the Monarch of Flame. On those death-swimming eyeballs, and blood-clotted
hair; Unmeasured in height, undistinguish'd in form, For down came the Templars, like Cedron in flood, His breath it was lightning, his voice it was storm; And dyed their long lances in Saracen blood. 1 ween the stout heart of Count Albert was tame, When he saw in his terrors the Monarch of Flame. The Saracens, Curdmans, and Ishmaelites yield
To the scallop, the saltier, and crossleted shield; In his hand a broad falchion blue-glimmer'd through And the eagles were gorged with the infidel dead, smoke,
From Bethsaida's fountains to Naphthali's head. And Mount Lebanon shook as the monarch he spoke: “ With this brand shalt thou conquer, thus long, and The battle is over on Bethsaida’s plain.no more,
Oh, who is yon Paynim lies stretch'd 'mid the slain? Till thou bend to the Cross, and the Virgin adore.” And who is yon Page lying cold at his knee?
Oh, who but Count Albert and fair Rosalie ! The cloud-shrouded Arm gives the weapon; and
The Lady was buried in Salem's bless'd bound, The recreant receives the charm’d gift on his knee: The Count he was left to the vulture and hound: The thunders growl distant, and faint gleam the fires, Her soul to high mercy Our Lady did bring; As, borne on the whirlwind, the phantom retires. His went on the blast to the dread Fire-King.
Count Albert has arm’d him the Paynim among, Yet many a minstrel, in harping, can tell,
At the tale of Count Albert and fair Rosalie,
From Lebanon's forests to Galilee's wave,
Frederick and alice.
[1801.] The war-cymbals clatter'd, the trumpets replied, The lances were couch'd, and they closed on each side;
This tale is imitated, rather than translated, from a And horsemen and horses Count Albert o’erthrew, fragment introduced in Goethe's “ Claudina von Villa Till he pierced the thick tumult King Baldwin unto. Bella,” where it is sung by a member of a gang of banditti,
to engage the attention of the family, while his companions Against the charm'd blade which Count Albert did break into the castle. It owes any little merit it may possess wield,
to my friend MR. LEWIS, to whom it was sent in an exThe fence had been vain of the King's Red-cross tremely rude state; and who, after some material improper shield;
ments, published it in his “ Tales of Wonder.” But a Page thrust him forward the monarch before, And cleft the proud turban the renegade wore.
So fell was the dint, that Count Albert stoop'd low
FREDERICK leaves the land of France,
Homeward hastes his steps to measure,
On the scene of former pleasure.
Sore sigh’d the charm’d sword, for its virtue was o'er,
Joying in his prancing steed,
Keen to prove his untried blade,
Over mountain, moor, and glade.
Helpless, ruin'd, left forlorn,
Lovely Alice wept alone; Mourn’d o'er love's fond contract torn,
Hope, and peace, and honour flown.
Mark her breast's convulsive throbs!
See, the tear of anguish flows !Mingling soon with bursting sobs,
Loud the laugh of frenzy rose.
Wild she cursed, and wild she pray'd;
Seven long days and nights are o'er; Death in pity brought his aid,
As the village bell struck four.
Far from her, and far from France,
Faithless Frederick onward rides; Marking, blithe, the morning's glance
Mantling o'er the mountain's sides.
Heard ye not the boding sound,
As the tongue of yonder tower, Slowly, to the hills around,
Told the fourth, the fated hour ?
Starts the steed, and snuffs the air,
Yet no cause of dread appears; Bristles high the rider's hair,
Struck with strange mysterious fears.
Desperate, as his terrors rise,
In the steed the spur he hides ; From himself in vain he flies;
Anxious, restless, on he rides.
Seven long days, and seven long nights,
Wild he wander'd, woe the while! Ceaseless care, and causeless fright,
Urge his footsteps many a mile.
Dark the seventh sad night descends;
Rivers swell, and rain-streams pour; While the deafening thunder lends
All the terrors of its roar.
Weary, wet, and spent with toil,
Where his head shall Frederick hide! Where, but in yon ruin'd aisle,
By the lightning's flash descried.
To the portal, dank and low,
Fast his steed the wanderer bound : Down a ruin'd staircase slow,
Next his darkling way he wound.
Often lost their quivering beam,
Still the lights move slow before,
Right against an iron door.
Thundering voices from within,
Mix'd with peals of laughter, rose ;
Lent its wild and wondrous close!
Midst the din, he seem'd to hear
Voice of friends, by death removed ;-.
'Twas the lay that Alice loved.
Hark! for now a solemn knell
Four times on the still night broke;
Echoes from the ruins spoke.
As the lengthen'd clangours die,
Slowly opes the iron door!
But a funeral's form it wore !
Coffins for the seats extend;
All with black the board was spread ;
Long since number'd with the dead!
Alice, in her grave-clothes bound,
Gbastly smiling, points a seat;
All the expected stranger grcct.
High their meagre arms they wave,
Wild their notes of welcome swell;-“ Welcome, traitor, to the grave!
Perjured, bid the light farewell !”
The Battle of Sempach.
TIESE verses are a literal translation of an ancient Swiss ballad upon the battle of Sempach, fought 9th July, 1386, being the victory by which the Swiss cantons established their independence; the author, Albert Tchudi, denominated the Souter, from his profession of a shoemaker. He was a citizen of Lucerne, esteemed highly among his countrymen, both for his powers as a Meister-Singer, or minstrel, and his courage as a soldier; so that he might share the praise conferred by Collins on Æschylus, that
Not alone he nursed the poet's flame,
Long drear vaults before him lie!
Glimmering lights are seen to glide!— « Blessed Mary, hear my cry!
Deign a sinner's steps to guide !”
l'ho circunstance of their being written by a poet returning from the well-fought field he describes, and in which his country's fortune was secured, may confer on Tchudi’s verses an interest which they are not entitled to claim from their poetical merit. But ballad poetry, the more literally it is translated, the more it loses its simplicity, without acquiring either grace or trength; and, therefore, some of the faults of the verses must be imputed to the translator's feeling it a duty to keep as closely as possible to his original. The various puns, rude attempts at pleasantry, and disproportioned episodes, must be set down to Tchudi's account, or to the taste of his age.
So hot their heart and bold,
And slay both young and old.”
With clarion loud, and banner proud,
From Zurich on the lake,
Their onward march they make.
“ Now list, ye lowland nobles all-
Ye seek the mountain strand,
In such a dangerous land.
The military antiquary will derive some amusement from the minute particulars which the martial poet bas recorded. The mode in which the Austrian menat-arms received the charge of the Swiss, was by forming a phalanx, which they defended with their long lances. The gallant Winkelreid, who sacrificed his own life by rushing among the spears, clasping in his arms as many as he could grasp, and thus opening a gap in those iron battalions, is celebrated in Swiss history. When fairly mingled together, the unwieldy length of their weapons, and cumbrous weight of their defensive armour, rendered the Austrian men-at-arms a very unequal match for the light armed mountaineers. The victories obtained by the Swiss over the German chivalry, hitherto deemed as formidable on foot as on horseback, led to important changes in the art of war. The poet describes the Austrian knights and squires as cutting the peaks from their boots ere they could act upon foot, in allusion to an inconvenient piece of foppery, often mentioned in the middle ages. Leopold III., Archduke of Austria, called “ The handsome man-at-arms," was slain in the Battle of Sempach, with the flower of his chivalry.
“ I rede ye, shrive ye of your siris,
Before ye farther go;
May send your souls to woe.”
" But where now shall we find a priest
Our shrift that he may hear?”—
He deals a penance drear.
“ Right heavily opon your head
He'll lay his hand of steel ;
Your absolution deal.”—
'Twas on a Monday morning then,
The corn was steep'd in dew,
When the host to Sempach drew.
The stalwart men of fair Lucerne
Together have they join'd;
Was none cast looks behind.
It was the Lord of Hare-castle,
And to the Duke he said,
Will meet us undismay'd.”-
THE BATTLE OF SEMPACH.?
'Twas when among our linden-trees
The bees had housed in swarms, ( And grey-hair'd peasants say that these
Betoken foreign arms,)
“O Hare-castle,3 thou heart of hare!"
Fierce Oxenstern replied.
The taunted knight replied.
Then look'd we down to Willisow,
There was lacing then of helmets bright, The land was all in flame;
And closing ranks amain; We knew the Archduke Leopold
The peaks they hew'd from their boot-points With all his army came.
Might wellnigh load a wain.“ This translation first appeared in Blackwood's Edinburgh the middle ages, of wearing boots with the points or peaks Magazine for February 1818.-Ed.
turned upwards, and so long, that in some cases they were 2 All the Swiss clergy who were able to bear arms fought in fastened to the knees of the wearer with small chains. When this patriotic wai
they alighted to fight upon foot, it would seem that the Auo3 In the original, Huasenstein, or Hare-stone.
trian gentlemen found it necessary to cut off these peake, that * This seems to allude to the proposterous fashion, during they might move with the necessary activity