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him careless by. Let them sweep on with heedless eyes ! But, had they known what mighty prize

In that frail vessel lay, The famish'd wolf, that prowls the wold, Had scatheless pass'd the unguarded fold, Ere, drifting by these galleys bold,

Unchallenged were her way ! And thou, Lord Ronald, sweep thou on, With mirth, and pride, and minstrel tone ! But badst thou known who sail'd so nigh, Far other glance were in thine eye! Far other flush were on thy brow, That, shaded by the bonnet, now Assumes but ill the blithesome cheer Of bridegroom when the bride is near!

XVII.
Yes, sweep they on-We will not leave,
For them that triumph, those who grieve.

With that armada gay
Be laughter loud and jocund shout,
And bards to cheer the wassail rout

With tale, romance, and lay;'
And of wild mirth each clamorous art,
Which, if it cannot cheer the heart,
May stupefy and stun its smart,

For one loud busy day. Yes, sweep they on! But with that skiff

Abides the minstrel tale, Where there was dread of surge and cliff, Labor that strain'd each sinew stiff,

And one sad Maiden's wail.

Thus to the Leader spoke :
“ Brother, how hopest thou to abide
The fury of this wilder'd tide,
Or how avoid the rock's rude side,

Until the day has broke ?
Didst thou not mark the vessel reel,
With quivering planks, and groaning keel,

At the last billow's shock ?
Yet how of better counsel tell,
Though here thou see'st poor Isabel

Half dead with want and fear;
For look on sea, or look on land,
Or yon dark sky-on every hand

Despair and death are near.
For her alone I grieve, on me
Danger sits light, by land and sea,

I follow where thou wilt;
Either to bide the tempest's lour,
Or wend to yon unfriendly tower,
Or rush amid their naval power,"
With war-cry wake their wassail-hour

And die with hand on hilt.”—

XX.
That elder Leader's calm reply

In steady voice was given, “In man's most dark extremity

Oft succor dawns from Heaven. Edward, trim thou the shatter'd sail, The helm be mine, and down the gale

Let our free course be driven; So shall we 'scape the western bay, The hostile fleet, the unequal fray, So safely hold our vessel's way

Beneath the Castle wall;
For if a hope of safety rest,
'Tis on the sacred name of guest,
Who seeks for shelter, storm-distress'd,

Within a chieftain's hall.
If not—it best beseems our worth,
Our name, our right, our lofty birth,

By noble hands to fall.”

XVIII. All day with fruitless strife they toild, With eve the ebbing currents boild

More fierce from strait and lake; And midway through the channel met Conflicting tides that foam and fret, And high their mingled billows jet, As spears, that, in the battle set,

Spring upward as they break. Then, too, the lights of eve were past," And louder sung the western blast

On rocks of Inninmore; Rent was the sail, and strain'd the mast, And many a leak was gaping fast, And the pale steersman stood aghast,

And gave the conflict o'er.

XXI.
The helm, to his strong arm consign'd,
Gave the reef'd sail to meet the wind,

And on her alter'd way,
Fierce bounding, forward sprung the ship,
Like greyhound starting from the slip

To seize his flying prey. Awaked before the rushing prow, The mimic fires of ocean glow,

Those lightnings of the wave ;o Wild sparkles crest the broken tides,

XIX. 'Twas then that One, whose lofty look Nor labor dull'd nor terror shook,

1 MS." As the gay nobles give the boor,

When, toiling in his task obscure,

Their greatness passes by." * MS.-"She held unchallenged way."

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And, flashing round, the vessel's sides

With elvish lustre lave,
While, far behind, their livid light
To the dark billows of the night

A gloomy splendor gave.
It seems as if old Ocean shakes
From his dark brow the lucido flakes

In envious pageantry,
To match the meteor-light that streaks

Grim Hecla's midnight sky.

XXIV.
Beneath the Castle's sheltering lee,
They staid their course in quiet sea.
Hewn in the rock, a passage there
Sought the dark fortress by a stair,

So straight, so high, so steep,
With peasant's staff one valiant hand
Might well the dizzy pass have mann'd,
'Gainst hundreds arm'd with spear and brand,

And plunged them in the deep."
His bugle then the helmsman wound;
Loud answer'd every echo round,

From turret, rock, and bay,
The postern's hinges crash and groan,
And soon the warder's cresset shone
On those rude steps of slippery stone,

To light the upward way.
“ Thrice welcome, holy Sire!” he said ;
Full long the spousal train have staid,

And, vex'd at thy delay,
Fear'd lest, amidst these wildering seas,
The darksome night and freshening breeze

Had driven thy bark astray.”—

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XXII.
Nor lack'd they steadier light to keep
Their course upon the darken'd deep;-
Artornish, on her frowning steep

"Twixt cloud and ocean hung, Glanced with a thousand lights of glee, And landward far, and far to sea,

Her festal radiance flung.
By that blithe beacon-light they steerd,

Whose lustre mingled well
With the pale beam that now appear'd,
As the cold moon her head uprear'd

Above the eastern fell.

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XXIII.
Thus guided, on their course they bore,
Until they near'd the mainland shore,
When frequent on the hollow blast
Wild shouts of merriment were cast,
And wind and wave and sea-bird's cry
With wassail sounds in concert vie,
Like funeral shrieks with revelry,

Or like the battle-shout
By peasants heard from cliffs on high,
When Triumph, Rage, and Agony,

Madden the fight and route.
Now nearer yet, through mist and storm
Dimly arose the Castle's form,

And deepen'd' shadow made,
Far lengthen'd on the main below,
Where, dancing in reflected glow,

A hundred torches play'd, Spangling the wave with lights as vain As pleasures in this vale of pain,

That dazzle as they fade.

XXV.
"Warder," the younger strangera said,
Thine erring guess some mirth had made
In mirthful hour; but nights like these,
When the rough winds wake western seas,
Brook not of glee. We crave some aid
And needful shelter for this maid

Until the break of day;
For, to ourselves, the deck's rude plank
Is easy as the mossy bank

That's breathed upon by May,
And for our storm-toss'd skiff we seek
Short shelter in this leeward creek,
Prompt when the dawn the east shall streak

Again to bear away.”—
Answered the Warder,-“ In what name
Assert ye hospitable claim ?

Whence come, or whither bound ?
Hath Erin seen your parting sails :
Or come ye on Norweyan gales ?
And seek ye England's fertile vales,

Or Scotland's mountain ground ?"—

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1 MS.-"And, bursting round the vessel's sides,

4 MS.--"The wind, the wave, the sea-birds' cry, A livid lustre gave."

In melancholy concert vie." 3 MS.--"Livid."

6 MS.-—"Darksome.” 3“ The description of the vessel's approach to the Castle

6 " Mr. Scott, we observed in the newspapers, was engaged through the tempestuous and sparkling waters, and the con

during last summer in a maritime expedition ; and, accordingtrast of the gloomy aspect of the billows with the glitteringly, the most striking novelty in the present poem is the extent splendor of Artornish,

and variety of the sea pieces with which it abounds. One of "'Twixt cloud and ocean hung,'

the first we meet with is the picture of the distresses of the sending her radiance abroad through the terrors of the night, King's little bark, and her darkling run to the shelter of Arand mingling at intervals the shouts of her revelry with the tornish Castle."- Edinburgh Review, 1815. wilder cadence of the blast, is one of the happiest instances of Mr. Scott's felicity in awful and magnificent scenery."--Criti

7 See Appendix, Note K. cal Review.

8 MS.—"That young leader."

Such as few arms could wield; But when he bound him to such task, Well could it cleave the strongest casque,

And rend the surest shield."

XXVI.
“ Warriors—for other title none
For some brief space we list to own,
Bound by a vow-warriors are we;
In strife by land, and storm by sea,

We have been known to fame;
And these brief words have import dear,
When sounded in a noble ear,
To harbor safe, and friendly cheer,

That gives us rightful claim.
Grant us the trivial boon we seek,
And we in other realms will speak

Fair of your courtesy;
Deny—and be your niggard Hold
Scorn'd by the noble and the bold,
Shunn'd by the pilgrim on the wold,

And wanderer on the lea!"

XXIX.
The raised portcullis arch they pass,
The wicket with its bars of brass,

The entrance long and low,
Flank'd at each turn by loop-holes strait,
Where bowmen might in ambush wait
(If force or fraud should burst the gate),

To gall an entering foe.
But every jealous post of ward
Was now defenceless and unbarr'd,

And all the passage free
To one low-brow'd and vaulted room,
Where squire and yeoman, page and groom,

Plied their loud revelry.

XXVII.
" Bold stranger, no—'gainst claim like thine,
No bolt revolves by hand of mine,"
Though urged in tone that more express'd
A monarch than a suppliant guest.
Be what ye will, Artornish Hall
On this glad eve is free to all.
Though ye had drawn a hostile sword
'Gainst our ally, great England's Lord,
Or mail upon your shoulders borne,
To battle with the Lord of Lorn,
Or, outlawd, dwelt by greenwood tree
With the fierce Knight of Ellerslie,'
Or aided even the murderous strife,
When Comyn fell beneath the knife
Of that fell homicide The Bruce,
This night had been a term of truce.-
Ho, vassals ! give these guests your care,
And show the narrow postern stair.”

XXVIII.
To land these two bold brethren leapt
(The weary crew their vessel kept),
And, lighted by the torches' fare,
That seaward flung their smoky glare,
The younger knight that maiden bare

Half lifeless up the rock;
On his strong shoulder lean’d her head,
And down her long dark tresses shed,
As the wild vine in tendrils spread,

Droops from the mountain oak.
Him follow'd close that elder Lord,
And in his hand a sheathed sword,

XXX
And “Rest ye here,” the Warder bade,
"Till to our Lord your suit is said.-
And, comrades, gaze not on the maid,
And on these men who ask our aid,

As if ye ne'er had seen
A damsel tired of midnight bark,
Or wanderers of a moulding stark,

And bearing martial mien."
But not for Eachin's reproof
Would page or vassal stand aloof,

But crowded on to stare,
As men of courtesy untaught,
Till fiery Edward roughly caught,

From one the foremost there,
His checker'd plaid, and in its shroud,
To hide her from the vulgar crowd,

Involved his sister fair.
His brother, as the clansman bent
His sullen brow in discontent,

Made brief and stern excuse ;-
“ Vassal, were thine the cloak of pall
That decks thy Lord in bridal hall,

'Twere honor'd by her use."

XXXI. Proud was his tone, but calm; his eye Had that compelling dignity, His mien that bearing haught and high,

Which common spirits fear !8 Needed nor word nor signal more,

1 MS. -"'gainst claim like yours,

No bolt ere closed our castle doors.' 9 Sir William Wallace. * See Appendix, Note L. * MS.-“Well could it cleave the gilded casque,

And rend the trustiest shield." 6 MS.—"The entrance vaulted low."

6 MS.—“Or warlike men of moulding stark."
7 MS.—“ Till that hot Edward fiercely caught

From one, the boldest there." 8 “Still sways their souls with that commanding art

That dazzles, leads, yet chills the vulgar heart.
What is that spell, that thus his lawless train
Confess and envy, yet oppose in vain ?

Nod, wink, and laughter, all were o'er; Upon each other back they bore,

And gazed like startled deer. But now appear'd the Seneschal, Commission'd by his lord to call The strangers to the Baron's hall,

Where feasted fair and free That Island Prince in nuptial tide, With Edith there his lovely bride, And her bold brother by her side, And many a chief, the flower and pride

Of Westem land and sea.

From deeper source than festal mirth.
By fits he paused, and harper's strain
And jester's tale went round in vain,
Or fell but on his idle ear
Like distant sounds which dreamers hear.
Then would he rouse him, and employ
Each art to aid the clamorous joy,

And call for pledge and lay,
And, for brief space, of all the crowd,
As he was loudest of the loud,

Seem gayest of the gay.

Here pause we, gentles, for a space;
And, if our tale hath won your grace,
Grant us brief patience, and again
We will renew the minstrel strain.

The Lord of the Isles.

III. Yet naught amiss the bridal throng Mark'd in brief mirth, or musing long; The vacant brow, the unlistening ear, They gave to thoughts of raptures near, And his fierce starts of sudden glee Seem'd bursts of bridegroom's ecstasy. Nor thus alone misjudged the crowd, Since lofty Lorn, suspicious, proud, And jealous of his honor'd line, And that keen knight, De Argentine? (From England sent on errand high, The western league more firm to tie), Both deeni'd in Ronald's mood to find A lover's transport-troubled mind. But one sad heart, one tearful eye, Pierced deeper through the mystery, And watch'd, with agony and fear, Her wayward bridegroom's varied cheer.

CANTO SECOND

I. FILL the bright goblet, spread the festive board! Summon the gay, the noble, and the fair ! Through the loud hall in joyous concert pour'd, Let mirth and music sound the dirge of Care ! But ask thou not if Happiness be there, If the loud laugh disguise convulsive throe, Or if the brow the heart's true livery wear;

Lift not the festal mask !-enough to know, No scene of mortal life but teems with mortal woe.

II. With beakers' clang, with harpers' lay, With all that olden time deem'd gay, The Island Chieftain feasted high; But there was in his troubled eye A gloomy fire, and on his brow Now sudden flush'd, and faded now, Emotions such as draw their birth

IV. She watch’d-yet fear'd to meet his glance, And he shunn'd hers, till when by chance They met, the point of foeman's lance

Had given a milder pang! Beneath the intolerable smart He writhed—then sternly mann'd his heart To play his hard but destined part,

And from the table sprang. “ Fill me the mighty cup!" he said, “ Erst own'd by royal Somerled: Fill it, till on the studded brim In burning gold the bubbles swim,

What should it be, that thus their faith can bind ?
The power of Thought-the magic of the Mind !
Link'd with success, assumed and kept with skill,
That moulds another's weakness to its will ;
Wields with her hands, but, still to these unknown,
Makes even their mightiest deeds appear his own.
Such hath it been shall be-beneath the sun
The many still must labor for the one!
Tis Nature's doom."

BYRON's Corsair. 1 MS.-"Of mountain chivalry."

2" The first Canto is full of business and description, and the scenes are such as Mr. Scott's muse generally excels in. The scene between Edith and her nurse is spirited, and con

tains many very pleasing lines. The description of Lord Ronald's fleet, and of the bark endeavoring to make her way against the wind, more particularly of the last, is executed with extraordinary beauty and fidelity."- Quarterly Revier.

3 " Even in laughter the heart is sorrowful; and the end of that mirth is heaviness."'-- Proverbs, xiv. 13. 4 MS. "and give birth

To jest, to wassail, and to mirth." 6 MS.-“Would seem the loudest of the loud,

And gayest of the gay." 6 MS.-“Since Lorn, the proudest of the proud." 7 MS.--"And since the keen De Argentine." 8 See Appendix, Note L. 9 lbid. Note M.

And every gem of varied shine
Glow doubly bright in rosy wine !
To you, brave lord, and brother mine,

Of Lorn, this pledge I drink-
The union of Our House with thine,

By this fair bridal-link !”—

V.

“Let it pass round!" quoth He of Lorn,
" And in good time—that winded horn

Must of the Abbot tell ;
The laggard monk is come at last.”
Lord Ronald heard the bugle-blast,
"And on the floor at random cast,

The untasted goblet fell.
But when the warder in his ear
Tells other news, his blither cheer

Returns like sun of May,
When through a thunder-cloud it beams !--
Lord of two hundred isles, he seems

As glad of brief delay,
As some poor criminal might feel,
When, from the gibbet or the wheel,

Respited for a day.

VII. Then lords and ladies spake aside, And angry looks the error chide, That gave to guests unnamed, unknown, A place so near their prince's throne;

But Owen Erraught said, “For forty years a seneschal, To marshal guests in bower and hall

Has been my honor'd trade. Worship and birth to me are known, By look, by bearing, and by tone, Not by furr'd robe or broider'd zone;

And 'gainst an oaken bough I'll gage my silver wand of state, That these three strangers oft have sate

In higher place than now.”—

VI. "Brother of Lorn," with hurried voice He said, “and you, fair lords, rejoice!

Here, to augment our glee, Come wandering knights from travel far, Well proved, they say, in strife of war,

And tempest on the sea.Ho! give them at your board such place As best their presences may grace,

And bid them welcome free !" With solemn step, and silver wand, The Seneschal the presence scann'd Of these strange guests; and well he

knew How to assign their rank its due ;9

For though the costly furs That erst had deck'd their caps were torn, And their gay robes were over-worn,

And soild their gilded spurs, Yet such a high commanding grace Was in their mien and in their face, As suited best the princely dais,"

And royal canopy; And there he marshall’d them their place,

First of that company.

VIII. “I, too,” the aged Ferrand said, “ Am qualified by minstrel trade?

Of rank and place to tell ;-
Mark'd ye the younger stranger's eye,
My mates, how quick, how keen, how high,

How fierce its flashes fell,
Glancing among the noble rout
As if to seek the noblest out,
Because the owner might not brook
On any save his peers to look ?

And yet it moves me more,
That steady, calm, majestic brow,
With which the elder chief even now

Scann'd the gay presence o'er,
Like being of superior kind,
In whose high-toned impartial mind
Degrees of mortal rank and state
Seem objects of indifferent weight.
The lady too—though closely tied

The mantle veil both face and eye,
Her motions' grace it could not hide,

Nor could her form's fair symmetry.”

IX. Suspicious doubt and lordly scorn Lour'd on the haughty front of Lorn. From underneath his brows of pride, The stranger guests he sternly eyed, And whisper'd closely what the ear Of Argentine alone might hear;

Then question'd, high and brief, If, in their voyage, aught they knew

And ushers censured the mistake.' 0 “ The first entry of the illustrious strangers into the castle of the Celtic chief, is in the accustomed and peculiar style of the poet of chivalry."-JEFFREY. 7 MS.-"1, too,' old Ferrand said, and laugh'd,

1 MS.--"As may their presence fittest grace." 9 MS. -“ With solemn pace, and silver rod,

The Seneschal the entrance show'd

To these strange guests." 9 See Appendix, Note N.

4 Dais-the great hall table-elevated a step or two above the rest of the room.

• M8.-" Aside then lords and ladies spake,

"Am qualified by minstrel craft.'" & MS.

** the festal rout.' MS.-"Nor hide," &c.

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