« ForrigeFortsett »
Save the chance greetings of some par;ing ships,
Oh! never in high Roman basilic, Prime dome of Art, or elder Lateran, Mother of churches ! never at the shrine That sprang the freshest from pure martyr-blood, Or held within its clasp a nation's heart By San Iago or Saint Denys blest, Never in that least earthly place of earth, The Tomb where Death himself lay down and died, The Temple of Man's new JerusalemDescended effluence more indeed divine, More total energy of Faith and Hope, And Charity for wrongs unspeakable, Than on that humble scantling of the flock, That midnight congregation of the Sea.
Rise not, good Sun! hold back unwelcome Light
He hears them not; beneath his splendour fades
One moment yet, ere the religious Muse
Nor this alone ; for fervid love may say,
Those seals and sureties which the Christian soul
So when soon came
To read the sense and secret of this change, Look where beside the winding path that leads These noble warriors to ignoble death, Rises a knoll of white, grass-tufted sand, Upon whose top, against the brightening sky, Stands a mean peasant, tending with one hand A heifer browsing on that scanty food. To the slow-moving line below he turns An indistinct, almost incurious gaze, While with a long right arm upraised in air He makes strange gestures, source of ribald mirth To some, but unregarded by the most. Yet could a mortal vision penetrate Each motion of that scene, it might perceive How every prisoner, filing by that spot, Bows his bold head, and walks with lighter steps Onward to rest but once and move no more : For in that peasant stands the yearned-for Priest, Periling life by this last act of love, And in those gestures are te absolving signs Which send the heroes to their morning graves Happy as parents' kisses duly speed Day-weary children to their careless beds.
Such are memorials, and a hundred more,
R, M, MILNES, GOETHE'S LIFE AND WORKS.
FROM MY LIFE.--POETRY AND TRUTH.
At that time, New-Year's-Day Day he blew incessantly, which was a greatly enlivened the city by the gen- sign that large bodies were in moveeral interchange of personal felicita. ment on different sides ; and in fact, tions. He who otherwise hardly left they passed on this day in greater the house, now hurried on his best masses through the city. The crowd clothes, that for a moment he might ran to look on. In general, people be friendly and courteous to his well. had been used to see them enter only wishers and friends. For us chil- in small parties. These, however, dren, the solemnity in our grande gradually swelled, and there was neifather's house, on this day, was a ther power nor inclination to stop the much-desired pleasure. At early dawn increase. In fine, on the 20 January, the grandchildren were already col- after a column had come through lected there, to hear the drums, eboes, Sachsenhausen, the Bridge, and clarionets, the trumpets and cor- through the Fahrgasse as far as the nets, played by the soldiers, the city gunner's guard, they halted, overmusicians, and others. The new-year's powered the small party which accomgifs, sealed and superscribed, were panied them, took possession of that divided by us children among the in- guard, and then marched down the ferior congratulants; and as the day ad- Zeile, till after a slight resistance the vanced, the numbers of the more dis- main guard was also obliged to yield. tinguished increased. First appeared Instantly the peaceful streets were the intimates and the relatives, then changed into a place of arms, where the lower officials ; the gentlemen of the troops established themselves, and the Council themselves did not fail to bivouacked until their quarters were wait on their chief magistrate; and a provided by regular billeting. select party were entertained in the This unexpected, for many years unevening in rooms which, except now, heard-of, burden pressed severely on the were hardly opened through the comfortable citizens. It could be more
The tarts, biscuits, annoying to no one than to my father, march
pane, and sweet wine, had the who had to receive strange military greatest charm
for the children. inhabitants into his hardly finished And besides this, the chief magistrate house, to open for them his well and the two burgomasters received adorned and neatly closed receptionannually, from certain foundations, rooms, and to abandon to the wantonsome articles of silver ware, which
ness of others all that he had been were then bestowed in due gradation used to arrange and preserve so accuamong the grand and godchildren. rately. He, moreover, who took the This festival, in fine, had in small what
Prussian side, had now to see himself ever usually dignifies the greatest.
besieged by the French even in his The New-Year's-Day of 1759. ap.
own chambers. It was the greatest proached-desired and delightful for grief which, with his mode of thinking, us children, like those before it ; but could possibly have befallen him. Yet full for older persons of anxiety and had it been possible for him to take foreboding. troops had indeed become a matter passage of French the thing more easily, as he spoke
French well, and could in the interof custom, and happened often, but
course of life comport himself with pet oftenest in the last days of the dignity and grace, he might have
According to the saved us and himself from many unancient usage of the imperial city, the pleasant hours. For it was the King's watchman on the chief tower blew lieutenant who was quartered on us; his trumpet whenever
troops ap- and he, although a military person, yet proached; and on this New Year's had only to arrange the civil ou ur
rences, the disputes between soldiers a citizen of Frankfort, and spoke good and citizens, and questions of debts French, could adapt hiinself to every and of quarrels. He was the Count thing, and only made a jest of maliy Thorane, a native of Grasse in Pro- small annoyances. Through him my vence, not far from Antibes, a long, thin, mother had sent a representation to grave figure, with a face much disfi- the Count, of the situation she was gured by.small pox, black fiery eyes, placed in owing to her husband's and a dignified, composed demear. temper. He bad so judiciously ex.
His very first entrance was fa- plained the matter, laying before him vourable for the family. There was the new house, not even completely some talk of the different rooms, which arranged, the natural reserve of the were, some of them to be given up to owner, his employment in the educahim, some to remain for our use; and, tion of his children, and whatever else as the Count heard a picture-room could be thought of to the same purspoken of, he immediately proposed, port, that the Count, who in his that although it was already night, he official post took the highest pride in shonlal at least hastily look at the pic. the utmost justice, disinterestedness, tures by candlelight. He took extreme and honourable conduct, resolved also pleasure in these things, behaved to play an exemplary part with refermost obligingly to my father, who ac- ence to those on whom he was quarcompanied him; and when he heard tered; and in fact did so without fail. that most of the artists were still living, ure, during the varying circumstances and in Frankfort or its neighbourhood, of the years in which he remained he said that he wished for nothing with us. more eagerly than to see them as soon My mother had some knowledge as possible, and give them employ- of Italian, a language not altogether ment.
strange to any of the family. She But even this sympathy as to art therefore determined to learn French could not change my father's feelings, also, as soon as possible, for which nor bend his character. He let happen purpose she employed the interpreter. what he could not prevent, but kept She had lately, in the midst of himself in inactivity at a distance; and these stormy events, stood godmother the extraordinary state of things about for a child of his, and this conhim was, even in the smallest trifle, nexion doubled his regard for us; intolerable to him.
so that he willingly devoted to his Meanwhile the conduct of Count child's godmother every leisure moThorane was exemplary. He would ment-for he lived just oppositenot even have his maps nailed on the and, above all, he taught her those walls, for fear of spoiling the new phrases which she would herself have room.papers. His people were dex- to use to the Count. This answered terous, quiet, and orderly; but, in truth, perfectly. The Count was flattered as all day long, and part of the night, by the pains which, at her years, the there was no quiet near him-one com- mistress of the house took; and as he plainant following another, accused had a vein of cheerful pleasantry in persons brought in and led out, and all his character, and even liked to display officers and adjutants admitted ; and a certain dry gallantry, there arose the as, morover, the Count had every day most friendly relation between the an open dinner-table-thus in the
two; and the godmother and father moderate-sized house, planned only who had contrived it, could gain for a family, and having but one open whatever they wanted from our staircase running from top to bottom- guest. there was a perpetual movement and Had it been possible, as I said buzz as if in a beehive, though all was before, to conciliate my father, this temperately, gravely, and severely altered state of things would have had managed.
little inconvenience. The Count prac. As mediator between a master tised the severest disinterestedness. He of the house, daily more and more even refused presents which belonged a prey to melancholy self-torment, properly to his situation. Any thing, and a friendly but very grave and however trifling, that could have borne precise military guest, there the appearance of a bribe was rejected. happily a smooth interpreter, a hands with anger, even with punishment. some, corpulent, cheerful man, who was His people were most severely forbidden
to put the landlord of the house to the hardly a day in which the interpreter smallest expense. On the other hand, did not relate some anecdote or other we children were sumptuously sup- of the kind to entertain us and niy plied from the dessert. On this oppor, mother. This lively man had made tunity, I may give a notion of the for himself a little collection of such simplicity of those times, by mention- Solomonian decisions. But I rememing that my mother one day distressed ber only the general impression, and us extremely, by throwing away the cannot recall any one case in particuices which had been sent us from the lar. table, because she fancied it impos- Time made the strange character of sible that the stomach should bear a the Count more and more intelligible. real ice however sweetened.
This man had the clearest conscious. Besides these dainties, which we ness of himself and his own peculiarigradually learned to enjoy and digest ties; and as there were certain times extremely well, it also seemed to us when a kind of ill-humour, hypochon.. children a great pleasure to be in a dria, or whatever may be the name of measure released from fixed hours of the evil demon, seized him, therefore lessons, and from severe discipline. at such hours, which often prolonged My father's ill-humour increased; he themselves to days, he retired into his could not resign himself to the inevi. chamber, saw no one but his servant, table. How did he torment himself, my and even in urgent cases could not be mother, and her friend the interpreter, prevailed on to receive any one. But the counsellors, and all his friends, as soon as the evil spirit had left him, only to get rid of the Count! In vain he appeared, as before, mild, cheerful, was it represented to him that the and active. From the talk of his serpresence of such a man in the house, vant, Saint Jean, a small, lean man, under the actual circumstances, was a of lively good nature, it might be inreal benefit; that a perpetual suc- ferred that, in earlier' years, when cession either of officers or privates overpowered by this temper, he had would follow on the removal of the caused some great misfortune ; and
None of these arguments that, therefore, in so important a post would hit him. The present seemed as his, and exposed to the eyes of all to him so intolerable, that his vexa- the world, he was rigidly determined tion prevented him conceiving any in avoiding the like errors. thing worse which might follow. In the very first days of the Count's
In this way was his activity re- residence, all the Frankfort artists, as strained which he had been used to Hirt, Schütz, Trautmann, Nothnagel,
The tasks which he set Junker, were sent for to him. They us he now no longer required with his showed him the pictures they had former exactness, and we tried in all ready, and the Count purchased what possible ways to gratify our curiosity
was for sale. for military and other public proceed
My pretty light end-room in the ings, not only at home but also in the attic was given up to him, and was strects, which was easily accomplished, immediately turned into a cabinet and as the house-door, open day and painting-room; for he designed to night, was guarded by sentries who employ, for a considerable time, all the did not trouble themselves about the artists, but especially Seekaz of Darmrunning in and out of restless chil- stadt, whose pencil highly delighted
him by its natural and simple repreThe many affairs which were set- sentations. He therefore had an tled before the tribunal of the King's account sent from Grasse, where his Lieutenant , gained a special charm elder brother had a handsome house, to
of the dimensions of all the rooms and his decisions with some witty, sharp, cabinets, considered with the artists
What he decreed the proper divisions of the walls, and was severely just ; his mode of expressa determined accordingly the sizes of ing it was whimsical and poignant. He the large oil-pictures, which were not seemed to ha ve taken the Duke of to be placed in frames, but to he fixed Ossuna* as his model. There passed on the walls, like the pieces of room
employ on us.
from his peculiar
and pleasant turn.
10. CCXCI, V OL, XLTII,
* See St Réal-Conspiration de Venise.. Tr.