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a Still from the purpose wilt thou stray ! Good gentle friend, how went the day?”

Complete the woful tale, and say,
Who fell upon that fatal day;
What leaders of repute and name
Bought by their death a deathless fame.'
If such my direst foeman's doom,
My tears shall dew his honour'd tomb.-
No answer?-Friend, of all our host,
Thou know'st whom I should hate the most,
Whom thou too, once, wert wont to hate,
Yet leavest me doubtful of his fate.”_
With look unmoved,“ Of friend or foe,
Aught," answer'd Bertram,“ would'st thou know,
Demand in simple terms and plain,
A soldier's answer shalt thou gain ;-
For question dark, or riddle high,
I have nor judgment nor reply.”

XIII. * Good am I deem'd at trumpet-sound, And good where goblets dance the round, Though gentle ne'er was join'd, till now, With rugged Bertram's breast and brow.-But I resume. The battle's rage Was like the strife which currents wage, Where Orinoco, in his pride, Rolls to the main no tribute tide, But 'gainst broad ocean urges far A rival sea of roaring war; While, in ten thousand eddies driven, The billows fling their foam to heaven, And the pale pilot seeks in vain, Where rolls the river, where the main. Even thus upon the bloody field, The eddying tides of conflict wheeld! Ambiguous, till that heart of flame, Hot Rupert, on our squadrons came, Hurling against our spears a line Of gallants, fiery as their wine; Then ours, though stubborn in their zeal, In zeal's despite began to reel. What wouldst thou more ?-in tumult tost, Our leaders fell, our ranks were lost. A thousand men, who drew the sword For both the Houses and the Word, Preach'd forth from hamlet, grange, and down, To curb the crosier and the crown, Now, stark and stiff, lie stretch'd in gore, And ne'er shall rail at mitre more.Thus fared it, when I left the fight, With the good Cause and Commons' right."

XV. The wrath his art and fear suppressid, Now blazed at once in Wycliffe's breast; And brave, from man so meanly born, Roused his hereditary scorn. “ Wretch! hast thou paid thy bloody debt! Puilip Of Mortham, lives he yet? False to thy patron or thine oath, Trait’rous or perjured, one or both. Slave! hast thou kept thy promise plight, To slay thy leader in the fight?”Then from his seat the soldier sprung, And Wycliffe's hand he strongly wrung; His grasp, as hard as glove of mail, Forced the red blood-drop from the nail -“ A health !” he cried; and, ere he quaff'd, Flung from him Wycliffe's hand, and laugh’d: _“ Now, Oswald Wycliffe, speaks thy heart ! Now play'st thou well thy genuine part ! Worthy, but for thy craven fear, Like me to roam a bucanier. What reck'st thou of the Cause divine, If Mortham's wealth and lands be thine ? What carest thou for beleaguer'd York, If this good hand have done its work? Or what, though Fairfax and his best Are reddening Marston's swarthy breast,

XIV. “ Disastrous news!” dark Wycliffe said; Assumed despondence bent his head. While troubled joy was in his eye, The well-feign’d sorrow to belie.“ Disastrous news !-when needed most, Told ye not that your chiefs were lost?

the first instance, disappointed. We do not mean to say that

'And, Cortez, thine, in Bertram's fame.' either is in variably faulty; neither is it within the power of accident that the conceptions of a vigorous and highly culti- " The author, surely, cannot require to be told, that the vated mind, should uniformly invest themselves in trivial ex- feebleness of these jingling couplets is less offensive than their pressions, or in dissonant rhymes; but we do think that those obscurity. The first line is unintelligible, because the condigolden lines, which spontaneously fasten themselves on the tional word “if,' on which the meaning depends, is neither memory of the reader are more rare, and that instances of a expressed nor implied in it; and the third line is equally faulculpable and almost slovenly inattention to the usual rules ty, because the sentence, when restored to its natural order, of diction and of metre, are more frequent in this, than in any can only express the exact converse of the speaker's intention. preceding work of Mr. Scott. In support of this opinion, we We think it necessary to remonstrate against these barbarous adduce the following quotation, which occurs in stanza xii. : inversions, because we consider the rules of grammar as the and in the course of a description which is, in some parts, un only shackles by which the Hudibrastic metre, already so li usually splendid

centious, can be confined within tolerable limits."

* Led Bertram Risingham the hearts,'

to

1 MS.-" The doubtful tides of battle reel'd."

2 MS.-" Chose death in preference to shame."

If Philip Mortham with them lie,
Lending his life-blood to the dye?
Sit, then! and as ’mid comrades free
Carousing after victory,
When tales are told of blood and fear,
That boys and women’ shrink to hear,
From point to point I frankly tell3
The deed of death as it befell.

Lost was the war in inward strife,
Debating Mortham's death or life.
'Twas then I thought, how, lured to come,
As partner of his wealth and home,
Years of piratic wandering o'er,
With him I sought our native shore.
But Mortham's lord grew far estranged
From the bold heart with whom he ranged;
Doubts, horrors, superstitious fears,
Sadden'd and dimmd descending years;
The wily priests their victim sought,
And damn'd each free-born? deed and thought
Then must I seek another home,
My license shook his sober dome;
If gold he gave, in one wild day
I revell’d thrice the sum away.
An idle outcast then I stray'd,
Unfit for tillage or for trade.
Deem’d, like the steel of rusted lance,
Useless and dangerous at once.
The women fear'd my hardy look,
At my approach the peaceful shook ;
The merchant saw my glance of flame,
And lock'd his hoards when Bertram came;
Each child of coward peace kept far
From the neglected son of war.

XVI. “ When purposed vengeance I forego, Term me a wretch, nor deem me foe; And when an insult I forgive,* Then brand me as a slave, and live ! Philip of Mortham is with those Whom Bertram Risingham calls foes ; Or whom more sure revenge attends,“ If number'd with ungrateful friends. As was his wont, ere battle glow'd, Along the marshall'd ranks he rode, And wore his vizor up the while. I saw his melancholy smile, When, full opposed in front, he knew Where ROKEBY's kindred banner flew. "And thus,' he said, ' will friends divide !'I heard, and thought how, side by side, We two had turn'd the battle's tide, In many a well-debated field, Where Bertram's breast was Philip's

shield. I thought on Darien's deserts pale, Where death bestrides the evening gale, How o'er my friend my cloak I threw, And fenceless faced the deadly dew; I thought on Quariana's cliff, Where, rescued from our foundering skiff, Through the white breakers' wrath I bore Exhausted Mortham to the shore; And when his side an arrow found, I suck'd the Indian's venom'd wound. These thoughts like torrents rush'd along, To sweep away my purpose strong.

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XVIII. “ But civil discord gave the call, And made my trade the trade of all. By Mortham urged, I came again His vassals to the fight to train. What guerdon waited on my care ?8 I could not cant of creed or prayer; Sour fanatics each trust obtain'd, And I, dishonour'd and disdain’d, Gain’d but the high and happy lot, In these poor arms to front the shot! All this thou know'st, thy gestures tell; Yet hear it o'er, and mark it well. 'Tis honour bids me now relate Each circumstance of Mortham's fate.

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Some ancient sculptor's art has shown
An outlaw's image on the stone;'
Unmatch'd in strength, a giant he,
With quiver'd back,lo and kirtled knee.
Ask how he died, that hunter bold,
The tameless monarch of the wold,
And age and infancy can tell,
By brother's treachery he fell.
Thus warn’d by legends of my youth,
I trust to no associate's truth.

I watch'd him through the doubtful fray,
That changed as March's moody day,'
Till, like a stream that bursts its bank,9
Fierce Rupert thunder'd on our flank.
'Twas then, midst tumult, smoke, and strife,
Where each man fought for death or life,
'Twas then I fired my petronel,
And Mortham, steed and rider, fell.
One dying look he upward cast,
Of wrath and anguish—'twas his last.
Think not that there I stopp'd, to view
What of the battle should ensue;
But ere I clear'd that bloody press,
Our northern horse ran masterless;
Monckton and Mitton told the news,
How troops of roundheads choked the Ouse,
And many a bonny Scot, aghast,
Spurring his palfrey northward, past,
Cursing the day when zeal or meed
First lured their Lesley o'er the Tweed.*
Yet when I reach'd the banks of Swale,
Had rumour learn'd another tale;
With his barb'd horse, fresh tidings say,
Stout Cromwell has redeem'd the day:5
But whether false the news, or true,
Oswaid, I reck as light as you.”

XX. Not then by Wycliffe might be shown, How his pride startled at the tone In which his complice, fierce and free, Asserted guilt's equality. In smoothest terms his speech he wove, Of endless friendship, faith, and love; Promised and vow'd in courteous sort, But Bertram broke professions short.

Wycliffe, be sure not here I stay, No, scarcely till the rising day; Warn’d by the legends of my youth, I trust not an associate's truth. Do not my native dales prolong Of Percy Rede the tragic song, Train’d forward to his bloody fall, By Girsonfield, that treacherous Hall?? Oft, by the Pringle's haunted side, The shepherd sees his spectre glide. And near the spot that gave me name, The moated mound of Risingham, Where Reed upon her margin sees Sweet Woodburne's cottages and trees,

XXI. « When last we reason'd of this deed, Nought, I bethink me, was agreed, Or by what rule, or when, or where, The wealth of Mortham we should share; Then list, while I the portion name, Our differing laws give each to claim. Thou, vassal sworn to England's throne, Her rules of heritage must own; They deal thee, as to nearest heir, Thy kinsman's lands and livings fair, And these I yield :-do thou revere The statutes of the Bucanier. 11 Friend to the sea, and foeman sworn To all that on her waves are borne, When falls a mate in battle broil, His comrade heirs his portion'd spoil ; When dies in fight a daring foe, He claims his wealth who struck the blow; And either rule to me assigns Those spoils of Indian seas and mines, Hoarded in Mortham's caverns dark; Ingot of gold and diamond spark, Chalice and plate from churches borne, And gems from shrieking beauty torn, Each string of pearl, each silver bar, And all the wealth of western war. I go to search, where, dark and deep, Those Trans-atlantic treasures sleep. Thou must along—for, lacking thee, The heir will scarce find entrance free; And then farewell. I haste to try Each varied pleasure wealth can buy; When cloyed each wish, these wars afford Fresh work for Bertram's restless sword.”

XXII. An undecided answer hung On Oswald's hesitating tongue.

2

1 MS.-" That changed as with a whirlwind's sway."

-“dashing
On thy war-horse through the ranks,
Like a stream which burst its banks."

BYRON's Works, vol. x. p. 275. 3 MS.-“ Hot Rupert on the spur pursues;

Whole troops of fliers choked the Ouse." • See Appendix, Note P. • See Appendix, Note G.

6 MS.-" Taught by the legends of my youth

To trust to no associate's truth." ? See Appendix, Noto H. 8 MS.—" Still by the spot that gave me name,

The moated camp of Risingham,
A giant form the stranger secs,

Half hid by rifted rocks and tree." 9 See Appendix, Note I. 10 MS.—“ With bow in hand," &c. ! See Appendix, Note K.

Despite his craft, he heard with awe
This ruffian stabber fix the law;
While his own troubled passions veer
Through hatred, joy, regret, and fear:-
Joy'd at the soul that Bertram flies,
He grudged the murderer's mighty prize,
Hated his pride's presumptuous tone,
And fear'd to wend with him alone.
At length, that middle course to steer,
To cowardice and craft so dear,
“ His charge,” he said, “would ill allow
His absence from the fortress now;
Wilfrid on Bertram should attend,
His son should journey with his friend."

Hour after hour he loved to poro
On Shakspeare's rich and varied lore.
But turn’d from martial scenes and light,
From Falstaff's feast and Percy's fight,
To ponder Jaques' moral strain,
And muse with Hamlet, wise in vain;
And weep himself to soft repose
O'er gentle Desdemona's woes.

XXV.
In youth he sought not pleasures found
By youth in horse, and hawk, and hound,
But loved the quiet joys that wake
By lonely stream and silent lake;
In Deepdale's solitude to lie,
Where all is cliff and copse and sky;
To climb Catcastle's dizzy peak,
Or lone Pendragon's mound to scek. ?
Such was his wont; and there his dream
Soar'd on some wild fantastic theme,
Of faithful love, or ceaseless spring,
Till Contemplation's wearied wing
The enthusiast could no more sustain,
And sad he sunk to earth again.

XXIII.
Contempt kept Bertram's anger down,
And wreathed to savage smile his frown.
“ Wilfrid, or thou—'tis one to me,
Whichever bears the golden key.
Yet think not but I mark, and smile
To mark, thy poor and selfish wile !
If injury from me you fear,
What, Oswald Wycliffe, shields thee here?
I've sprung from walls more high than these,
I've swam through deeper streams than Tees.
Might I not stab thee, ere one yell
Could rouse the distant sentinel?
Start not-it is not my design,
But, if it were, weak fence were thine;
And, trust me, that, in time of need,
This band hath done more desperate deed.
Go, haste and rouse thy slumbering son;
Time calls, and I must needs be gone.

XXVI.
He loved-as many a

can tell,
Preserved in Stanmore's lonely dell;
For his was minstrel's skill, he caught
The art unteachable, untaught;
He loved--his soul did nature frame
For love, and fancy nursed the flame;
Vainly he loved-for seldom swain
Of such soft mould is loved again;
Silent he loved-in every gaze
Was passion,3 friendship in his phrase.
So mused his life away-till died
His brethren all, their father's pride.
Wilfrid is now the only heir
Of all his stratagems and care,
And destined, darkling, to pursue
Ambition's maze by Oswald's clue.

XXIV.
Nought of his sire's ungenerous part
Polluted Wilfrid's gentle heart;
A heart too soft from early life
To hold with fortune needful strife.
His sire, while yet a hardier race?
Of numerous sons were Wycliffe's grace,
On Wilfrid set contemptuous brand,
For feeble heart and forceless hand;
But a fond mother's care and joy
Were centred in her sickly boy.
No touch of childhood's frolic mood
Show'd the elastic spring of blood;

XXVII.
Wilfrid must love and woos the bright
Matilda, heir of Rokeby's knight.
To love her was an easy hest,
The secret empress of his breast;

1 MS.
“while yet around him stood

such over-strained, and even morbid sensibility, as are porA numerous race of hardier mood."

trayed in the character of Edwin, existing in so rude a state of 9" And oft the craggy cliff he loved to climb,

society as that which Beattie has represented,—but these

qualities, even when found in the most advanced and polished When all in mist the world below was lost, What dreadful pleasure there to stand sublime,

stages of life, are rarely, very rarely, united with a robust and Like shipwreck'd mariner on desert coast."

healthy frame of body. In both these particulars, the cha

racter of Wilfrid is exempt from the objections to which we BEATTIE'S Ilinstrel.

think that of the Minstrel liable. At the period of the Civil a MS.—“Was love, but friendship in his phrase."

Wars, in the higher orders of Society, intellectual refinement 4 “The prototype of Wilfrid may perhaps be found in had advanced to a degree sufficient to give probability to its Beattie's Edwin ; but in some essential respects it is made existence. The remainder of our argument will be best ermore true to nature than that which probably served for its plained by the beautiful lines of the poet," (stanzas xv. and original. The possibility may perhaps be questioned, (its great xxvi. )--Critical Review. improbability is unquestionable, ) of such excessive refinement, 5 MS.-" And first must Wilfrid woo," &c.

5

To woo her was a harder task
To one that durst not hope or ask.
Yet all Matilda could, she gave
In pity to her gentle slave;
Friendship, esteem, and fair regard,
And praise, the poet's best reward !
She read the tales his taste approved,
And sung the lays he framed or loved;
Yet, loth to nurse the fatal flame
Of hopeless love in friendship’s name,
In kind caprice she oft withdrew
The favouring glance to friendship due,'
Then grieved to see her victim's pain,
And gave the dangerous smiles again.

XXVIII. So did the suit of Wilfrid stand, When war's houd summons waked the land. Three banners, floating o'er the Tees, The wo-forboding peasant sees; In concert oft they braved of old The bordering Scot's incursion bold; Frowning defiance in their pride, Their vassals now and lords divide. From his fair hall on Greta banks, The Knight of Rokeby led his ranks, To aid the valiant northern Earls, Who drew the sword for royal Charles. Mortham, by marriage near allied, His sister had been Rokeby's bride, Though long before the civil fray, In peaceful grave the lady lay,Philip of Mortham raised his band, And march'd at Fairfax's command; While Wycliffe, bound by many a train Of kindred art with wily Vane, Less prompt to brave the bloody field, Made Barnard's battlements his shield, Secured them with his Lunedale powers, And for the Commons held the towers.

But Wilfrid, son to Rokeby's fos,
Must the dear privilege forego,
By Greta's side, in evening grey,
To steal upon Matilda's way,
Striving, with fond hypocrisy,
For careless step and vacant eye;
Calming each anxious look and glance,
To give the meeting all to chance,
Or framing, as a fair excuse,
The book, the pencil, or the muse:
Something to give, to sing, to say,
Some modern tale, some ancient lay.
Then, while the long'd-for minutes

last,-
Ah! minutes quickly over-past!-6
Recording each expression free,
Of kind or careless courtesy,
Each friendly look, each softer tone,
As food for fancy when alone.
All this is o’er—but still, unseen,
Wilfrid may lurk in Eastwood green,?
To watch Matilda's wonted round,
While springs his heart at every sound.
She comes !—'tis but a passing sight,
Yet serves to cheat his weary night;
She comes not—He will wait the hour,
When her lamp lightens in the tower;8
"Tis something yet, if, as she past,
Her shade is o'er the lattice cast.
"What is my life, my hope ?” he said ;
“ Alas! a transitory shade.”

XXX. Thus wore his life, though reason strove For mastery in vain with love, Forcing upon his thoughts the sum Of present woe and ills to come, While still he turn'd impatient ear From Truth’s intrusive voice severe. Gentle, indifferent, and subdued, In all but this, unmoved he view'd Each outward change of ill and good : But Wilfrid, docile, soft, and mild, Was Fancy's spoild and wayward child; In her bright' car she bade him ride, With one fair form to grace his side, Or, in some wild and lone retreat, Flung her high spells around his seat,

XXIX. The lovely heir of Rokeby's Knights Waits in his halls the event of fight; For England's war revered the claim Of every unprotected name, And spared, amid its fiercest rage, Childhood and womanhood and age.

10

8 MS.

1 MS.-" The fuel fond her favour threw." 2 MS.–“Now frowning dark on different side,

Their vassals and their lords divide." 3 MS.-“ Dame Alice and Matilda bright,

Daughter and wife of Rokeby's Knight,

Wait in his halls," &c.
• MS.-" But Wilfrid, when the strife arose,

And Rokeby and his son were foes,
Was doom'd each privilege to lose,

Of kindred friendship and the muse." 3 MS." Aping, with fond hypocrisy,

The careless step," &c. & The MS. has not this couplet.

7 MS.-“ May Wilfrid haunt the

}thickets green." Wilfrid haunts Scargill's

“ watch the hour,
That her lamp kindles in her tower."
9 MS.-" Wild car."
10 MS.-" Or in some fair hut lone retreat,

Flung her wild spells around his seat,
For him her opiates , gave to

}
opiate draughts bade
Which he who tastes can ne'er forego,
Taught him to turn impatient ear
From truth's intrusive voice severe

flow,

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