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an opportunity to judge for himself, That stern old heathen his head he raised, both of the hero and the poem. The Aud on the gool prelate he steadfastly gazed :
• Give me broad lands on the Wear and the first Canto commences thus,
My faith I will leare, and I'll cleave unto thine.' List to the valorous deeds that were done
The bargain being struck, old WitiBy Harold the Dauntless, Count Witikind's son! kind submitted to the rites of baptism, Count Witikind came of a regal strain,
and became the feudatory of the churcb. And rov'd with his Norsemen the land and the main.
VII. Wo to the realms which he coasted! for there lp then arose that grim convertite, Was shedding of blood, and rending of hair, Homeward be hied bim when ended the rite ; Rape of maiden, and slaughter of priest, The prelate in honour will with him ride, Gathering of ravens and wolves to the feast : And least in his castle on Tyne's fair side. When he hoisted his standard black,
Banners and banderols danced in the wind,
Pennon and cross on the bosomn of Type ;
And full in front did that fortress lower,
In darksome strength with its buttress and tower Oo Erin's shores was his outrage known,
At the castle-gate was young Harold there,
Count Witikind's only offspring and heir.
Young Harold was sear'd for his hardihood, More frequent he sailed, for he won the most. His strength of frame, and his fury of mood; So wide and so far his ravage they know,
Finde he was, and wild to behold, If a sail but gleam'd white 'gamust the welkin Wore neither collar nor bracelet of gold, blue,
Cap of vair nor rich array, Trumpet and bugle to arms did call,
Such as should grace that festal day; Burghers hasten’d to man the wall,
Bis doublet of bull's bide was all unbraced, Peasants Sed inland his sury to 'scape,
Uncovered his head, and his sandal unlaced; Beacons were lighted on headland and cape, His shaggy black locks on his brow hung low, Bells were toil'd out, and aye as they rung, And his eyes glanced through them a swarthy Fearsul and faintly the gray brothers sung,
glow; “Bless us, St. Mary, from ilood and from tire, A Danish club in his hand he bore, From famine and pest, and Count Witikind's The spikes were clotted with recent gore; ire!"
At his back a she-wolf, and her wolf.cubs twain,
In the dangerous chase that morning slain. The Count, however, got weary, Rude was the greeting his father he made, at last, of this piratical life, and having None to the Bishop-while thus he said : made a peace with the Saxon King, wbo
IX. was glad enough to buy off such an
“What priest-led hypocrite art thou,
Like a shaveling who studies to cheat his row : took upon him the peaceful style,
&c. &c. Of a vassal and liegeman of Britain's broad isle.' Witikind returned this dutiful ad. But Count Witikind soon began to
dress in kind; when wax old, and as he grew old, he natu
XI. rally grew feeble, and
Grimly smiled Harold, and coldly replied,
“We must honour our sires, if we fear when they As he grew feebler bis wildness ceased,
chide; He made himselt peace with prelate and priest, For me, I am yet what thy lessons have made, Made his peace, and stooping his head,
I was rock'd in a buckler, and fed from a blade, Patiently listed the counsel they said :
An infant, was taught to clap hands and to shout, Saint Cúthbert's bishop was holy and grave, Froin the roofs of the tower when the flame had Wise and good was the counsel he gave.
In the blood of slain foemen my finger to dip, V.
And tinge with its purple my cheek and my lip.-« Thou hast murder'd, robb’d, and spoil'd, 'Tis thou know'st not truth, that has barter'd in Time it is thy poor soul were assoil'd;
eld, Priest didst thou slay, and churches buri, For a price, the brave faith that thine ancestors Time it is now to repentance to turn;
held. Ficuds hast thou worshipp'd, with fiendish rite, When this wolf"--and the carcass he flung on the Leave now the darkness, and wend into light:
plain0! while life and space ale viien,
“Shall awake and give food to her nurslinga Tura thee yet, od think of Heaven!"
The face of his father will Harold review, singing a love song, from which it apTill then, aged Heathen, young Christian, adieu!"
pears, that she had plighted her faith XII.
with Lord William, Priest, monk, and prelate stood aghast,
The heir of Wilton's lofty tower.' As through the pageant the heathen pass'd. In the midst of her ditty, however,A cross-bearer out of his saddle he flung, Laid his hand on the pominel and into it sprung,
VII. &c. &c.
Sudden she stops—and starts to feel After this abrupt departure of Ha- A weighty band, a glove of steel, rold, the Count and the Bishop, with Upon her shrinking shoulder laid; their retinue, sat down to the feast, and A Knight in plate and mail array'd,
Fearsul she turn'd, and saw, dismay'd, indulged in the winė, and wassail,' His crest and bearing worn and fray'd, • Till man after man the contention gave o'er,
His surcoat soil'd and riven, Outstretch'd on the rushes that strew'd the hall Form'd like that giant race of yore,
Whose long-continued crimes outwore
The sufferance of heaven.
Stern accents made his pleasure known, taken of the revel; this was 'flaxen hair'd .Maiden,' he said, “ sing forth thy glee, Gunnar," the page of Lord Harold, and Start not-sing on—it pleases me.' bis foster-mother's child. This tender. This, as the reader may well suppose, hearted youth cannot bear to think is no other than the gentle Harold ; of bis amiable master's being exposed but he will not, probably, be better preto the darkness and cold,' on the pared than the trembling : Metelill' was, shelterless wold;' he therefore, loyally, for what follows ; which is neither more taking advantage of the general ebriety, nor less than a blunt intimation, that he robs one of the priests of his purse, is so well satisfied with her, that he another of his cloak, steals the Senes. intends to do her the honour of tachal's keys, and mounting the Bi. king her to wife, -of which magnanishop's palfry gay,' sets out in search of
mous determination he directs her to the self-exiled Harold. After some inform her parents. Poor Metelill, not hesitation, Harold agrees to accept exactly relishing the high destiny' albim as a follower of his fortunes,
lotted her, keeps this dreadful denun"Twere boothless to tell what climes they sought, ciation to herself. But Harold does Ventures achieved and battles fought;
not allow her much respite. In a few How oft with few, how oft alone,
days be makes his appearance again, Fierce Harold's arm the field had won. Men swore his eye that flash'd so red,
and bolts into the cottage to demand his When each other glance was quench'd with bride. • Wulfstane,' Metelill's father, dread,
who is a poacher by profession, would Bore oft a light of deadly flame That ne'er from mortal courage came.
at first fain make fight with him, but Those limbs so strong, that mood so stern, gathering more presence of mind, on a That loved the couch of heath and fern, second survey of his enormous stature, Afar from hamlet, tower, and town, More than to rest on driven down ;
thinks it wiser to turn him over to the That stubborn frame, that sullen mood, management of · Jutta,' bis wife, who Men deem'd must come of aught but good, is a famous witch.' Jutta begins to And they whisper'd, the great inaster fiend was mutter over all her incantations, but With Harold the Dauntless, Count Witikind's finding, at last, that what she bad mis
taken for a spectre, is, bona fide, flesh In the mean time, Count Witikind and blood, she abandons ber witchdies, and, bis graceless son not appear- craft, and has recourse to her wit. ing, the church resumes its lands." This She succeeds in prevailing on Harold closes the first Canto.
to defer bis purpose for that night, and The next Canto introduces,
the moment she gets rid of him, and • Fair Metelill, a woodland maid,'
finishes a conjugal skirmish with her
spouse, she starts off, whether on foot Harold calls upon their reverences or on a broomstick is not stated, and without periphrasis of ceremony, for setting every priest sbe passes, in her restitution of his lands. Aldingar, when hasty journey, to muttering and crossing he recovers his powers of speech, tells himself, and every cur to barking, and him that it cannot be, for two reasons, the foxes to yelling, and the cocks to —first, because he is an ' unchristened crowing, and the curlews to screech- Dane,' and next, because the lands have ing, and the ravens to croaking, and
'been granted anew the cat-o-mountains to screaming, she To Anthony Conyers and Alberic Vere.' proceeds · cheered by such music,' to Harold soon does away the force of
deep dell and rocky stone,' where this last objection, by tossing on the alshe raises the very devil bimself,—or, tar the head of Conyers and the hand as the poet couches it, in more courtly of Vere, new severed from their car· terms, a god of heathen days.' The casses !! second Canto closes with a spirited
VI. tête-a-tête, between the witch and the Count Harold laugh'd at their looks of fear: demon, in which it seems to be con- Was that the head should wear the casque
• Was this the hand should your banner bear? cluued between this worthy couple, that In battle at the church's task? the best way to cure Lord Harold's love Was it to such you gave the place fit, will be to set bim by the ears with Find me between the Wear and Tyne
Of Harold with the heavy mace?
Give him my fiefs, and I will say
There's wit beneath the cowl of gray.'his Lord, several monitory songs, tend- Caught from crush'd scull and spouting brain, ing to warn him against the charms of He wheel'd it that it shrilly sung, Detelill, and the arts of Jutta, who, it Then dash'd it down with sheer descent,
And the aisles echoed as it swung, seeins, had set him forward on his er. And split King Osric's monument.rand to St. Cuthbert's' Chapter. • How like ye this music? How trow ye the hand The fourth Canto assembles the
That can wield such a mace may be reft of its
land? priests and prelate of St. Cuthbert in No answer?-I spare ye a space to agree, solemn conclave. The haughty Alo And Saint Cuthbert inspire you, a saint if he be. dingar is seated in the episcopal chair,
Ten strides through your chancel, ten strokes on
your bell, whilst
And again I am with you--grave fathers fare
well.' Canons and deacons werc placed below, In due degree and lengthen'd row.
After this unwelcome intruder retires, Unmored and silent each sa there,
a jocular debate ensues among the Like image in bis oaken chair;
monks, in which it is facetiously proNor head, nor hand, nor foot, ther stirr'd, Nor lock of hair, nor tress of beard,
posed either to assassinate or poison And of their eyes severe alone
him. But the Bishop overrules these The twinkle show'd they were not stone.
motions for the present, and resolves to III. The Prelate was to speech address'd,
put Harold on some perilous probation, Each head sunk reverend on each breast: in wbich he may perish. When HaBut cre his voice was heard-without
rold returns to demand their ultimatum, Arose a wild tumultuous shout, Offspring of wonder mix'd with fear,
Aldingar receives him very graciously, Such as in crowded streets we hear
bids him to dinner, and promises him, Hailing the flames, that, bursting out,
that Attract yet scarc the rabble rout. Ere it had ceas'd, a giant hand
While the wine sparkles high in the goblet of Shook oaken door and iron band,
gold, Till oak and iron both gave way,
And the revel is loudest, (his) task shall be told : Clash'd the long bolts, the hinges bray,
Accordingly a story is sung to him And ere upon angel or saint they can call, Slands Harold the Dauntless in raidst of the of an enchanted castle, where six mo. ball.
narchs had been simultaneously murdered, on their wedding night, by their So baneful their influence on all that had breath, brides, who were sisters, and daughters
One drop had been frenzy, and two had been
death. of Urien ; who had been put to death in turn by a seventh monarch, who of swallowing this potion,
Happily as Harold was on the point bad married the seventh sister, and who included bis own wife in the massacre, And music and clamour, were heard on the hill,
A jubilee shrill, and, having quitted the castle, had And down the steep pathway, o'er stock and • Died in his cloister an anchorite gray.'
The train of a bridal came blithsomely on; He is, moreover, told that,
There was song, there was pipe, there was timSeven monarchs' wealth in that castle lies stow'd,
brel, and still The foul fiends brood o'er them like raven and The burden was “Joy to the fair Metelill !" toad,
On this pageant Harold soon pounces. Whoever shall guesten these chambers within,
But first, be ó rent a fragment from the From curiew till matins, that treasure shall win.
To perforın this, he is instructed, is cliff,' and hurled on the affrighted train the required probation. He exultingly be calculated from its effects,-it feil
below. Its force and magnitude may undertakes it; and the curtain drops on the Fourtb Canto.
upon Wulfstane, and, from the descripIn the Fifth Canto, Harold relaxes fist would demolish a moscheio. Lord
tion, mashed him as completely as one's into something like tender converse with the timid Gundar, which is sud. Harold, and a combat ensues; but the
William, however, prepares to engage denly interrupted by the appearance of
poor bridegroom would soon have fala mysterious monitor, in
len beneath Harold's redoubtable club, * A palmer form
bad not Gunnar interposed, at the moBy cowl and staff and mantle known,'
·ment it was poised to annihilate him, who is, however, visible to no eye but with its descending stroke. Harold's. He had appeared, it seems To stop the blow young Gunnar sprung, to our hero, before, on various occa- Around his master's knees he clung, sions,
And cried, .In mercy spare !
O think upon the words of fear • First in the vale of Gallilee,'
Spoke by that visionary seer, and again,
The crisis he foretold is here
Grant mercy-or despair! • In Cephalonia's rocky isle.'
This appeal is efficacious. Harold With this apparition Harold holds is struck with conviction, stays bis solemn communion, which, on the part uplifted hand, -nay, signs himself with of the disembodied interlocutor, ends the cross! and makes one step towards with this dreadful denouncement, heaven.' He retires and leaves bis anIf thou yield'st to thy fury, how tempted soever, tagonist and rival prostrate on the plain, The gate of repentance shall ope for thec never. and Metelill stretched insensible be
A little shocked at this ghostly vi. side bim. Jutta hastens to revive these sitation, Harold betbinks himself of exanimate lovers, and espying Harecruiting his courage, with a dram, rold's famous flasket, which he had left from a cordial contained in a flasket behind him, is about administering its given bim by one of the hospitable contents to her patients --when, like a monks of St. Cuthbert, and to which careful nurse, she thinks best to taste the crafty priest had attributed all the it first herself,—and it is well for them virtues which Don Quixote ascribed that she did,to his catholicon, though, as it proves in For when three drops the hag bad tasted, the sequel, this boasted panacea
So dismal was her yell,
Each bird of evil omen woke, a distillation of all the noxious plants, The raven gave his fatal croak, that hold dire "enmity with blood of And shriek'd the night-crow from the oak,
The screech-owl from the thicket broke, man,'
And Butter'd down the dell!
So fearful was the sound and stern,
The old gentleman, le adds, had hintThe slumbers of the full-gorged erne
ed, too, that Gunnar, Were sia iled, and from furze and fem, Of forest and of fell,
• Must in his lord's repentance aid.' The fox and famish'd wolf replied, (For wolves then prowl'd the Cheviot side)
But he appears much perplexed to conFrom mountain head to mountain head
jecture how. The unhallow'd sounds around were sped; Soon marking that he had lost his But when their latest echo tled, The sorceress on the ground lay dead.
glove, he sends Gunnar back to the
tower to look for it. And thus winds up the Fistb Canto.
Gunnar had heard bis lord's relation, In the Sixth and last Canto, Harold with no ordinary interest ; reaches the Castle of the Seven Shields, But when he learn’d the dubious close, enters its gate, perambulates its courts He blushed like any opening rose, and balls, and makes sogje reflections And, glad to hide his tell-tale cheek, on woman's perfidy,' on coming across When soon a shriek of deadly dread
Hied back that glove of mail to seek ; the skeletons of the seven witch- Sumimop'd his master to his aid. brides.' Gunnar takes on him the de- Harold hurries to his assistance, and fence of the sex, and says, with earnest- finds him in the grasp of a fiend in the ness and emotion,
form of Odin, the Danish war god. AfI could tell of woman's faith
ter a short parley, in which the deDefying danger, scorn, and death.
mon claims Gunnar as · Eivir,' for his Firm was that faith-as diamond stone
oin, Pure and unfaw'd-her love unkuown, And unrequited; firm and pure,
• Mark'd in the birth-hour with his sign, Her stainless faith could all endure, From clime to clime—from place to place-
the knight and the sprite join issue in Through want and danger, and disgrace,
terrible conflict, in which all the eleA wanderer's wayward steps could trace.-- ments take part. The knight, howAll this she did, and guerdon none
ever, has the best of the battle, and the Required, save that her burial-stone Should make at length the secret known. goblin wisely 'evanishes' in the storm Thus hath a faithful woman done.
he had raised. Not in each breast sucb truth is laid, But Eivir was a Danish maid.-
Nor paused the champion of the North,
But raised and bore his Eivir forth, Harold calls him a wild enthusiast,' From that wild scene of fiendish strife, yet confesses that could such an one be To light, to liberty, and life ! found,
XVII. Her's were a faith to rest upon.
He placed her on a bank of moss, But Eivir sle-ps beneath her slone,
A silver runnel bubbled by, And all reseinbling her are gone.
And new-born thoughts his soul engross,
And tremors yet unknown across They, then, couched them on the His stubborn sinews fly; floor,
The while with timid hand the dew
Upon her brow and neck he threw, • Until the beams of morning glow'd.' And mark'd how life with rosy hue Lord Harold, however, rose an alter'd On her pale cheek revived anew, man.' He had had a dismal dream, Inly he said, • Thut silken tress,
And glimmer'd in her eye. which, as soon as they had cleared out what blindness mine that could not guéss, of the castle, he relates. Among other Or how could page's rugged dress things, he states that the spirit of bis 0, dull of heart
, through wild and wave, father Witikind bad appeared to him, In search of blood and death to rave,' and revealed himself as the one, who, With such a partner nigh! in the guise of a palmer, had watched
XVIII. over bis fate, being doomed, as well for Then in the mirror'd pool he peerd, his son's sins as his own,
Blamed his rough locks and shaggy beard,
The stains of recent conflict clear'da • Awanderer upon earth to pine,
And thus the champioo proved, Until his son shall turn to grace,
That he fears now who never fear'd, And smooth for him a resting place.'
And loves who never loved.