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happy : cherish my memory, my dear friends; and if you hear no more, remember that the last dregs of the house of
have expired !” From that hour no further intelligence was received of the amiable, highly-endowed, and unfortunate Longford. For a little while Ellen's gloom seemed to yield to the illusions of a fond imagination. She wandered in the wood-walks, and sat for hours in the melancholy stillness of the churchyard, talking to herself, and apostrophizing Longford's absent spirit. It was deemed most prudent to indulge her in her affecting occupations. She gathered turf, and reared a little heap which she called his grave; and steeped it continually with her tears. She decorated it almost daily with some wild poetical address, of which the following is at least rational and simple.
“ Poetical Address to a Turf, raised as a Memorial of
the Grave of Longford.
The form of him I love enshroud,
And dew with tears thy fragrant heap,
My heart would know to be at peace,
And his glad soul's immortal flame
Beneath Conjecture's wearying pain;
I could the weight of grief sustain.
I kneel ! if, freed from human chains,
O let him listen to my straius !
Some vision of his fate impart;
'Twill comfort still my aching heart!
With memory of his former love;
I meet him in yon realms above !
These temporary rays of Ellen's mind however gradually faded away, and her intellects sunk into a frightful and unchanging darkness. I remember her when her wild fancy, subdued by tenderness, was in one of its sweetest humours. It was by far the most affecting sight I ever beheld: yet it approached the nearest in some of its traits to my ideas of a superior order of beings. To those who can admit beauty to be consistent with a certain degree of paleness and languor, she was more beautiful than painter ever drew. Her brown hair fell negligently over her face and shoulders; and her wild eyes, gazing by fits as if she saw not; and then lighting up into an ineffable kind of sweetness as some soothing image crossed her mind, filled one with a mixture of love, pity, admiration, and awe, which overcame and electrified the soul. As the friend of Longford she often threw herself on my protection with such powerful appeals to my heart, that I have wept with her for hours. Then her eloquence was so touching, and the play of her ideas so unexpected and brilliant, at those short periods when the beams of hope gave elasticity to her spirits, that one was carried away into a kind of fairy-land, and listened to her as if she was inspired.
But these bright days, as I have said, lasted only a little while: the period of impenetrable gloom came, and soon ended in decay and death, before she had completed her twentieth year. I visit her grave continually; and never cease to consecrate it with my tears. My heart thrills whenever I think of her; and willingly would I suffer again the agonies I have often endured at the sight of her disorder, for the delight of hearing her voice, and beholding the charms of her inexpressibly interesting countenance. But this is a selfish wish! The dear angel is at rest; or rather enjoying that superior order of existence, for which her exquisitely fine faculties and pure heart were better adapted !
But my readers will be impatient to hear the fate of Longford! Alas! I cannot entirely satisfy them. That the same assassins, who pursued him in the forest, bore him away by stratagem or by force cannot be doubted. That he had no means of extricating himself; or even of applying for a Habeas Corpus, supposing the arrest to have taken place under the colour of some legal process, shews the extent of the conspiracy, and the power exerted in it; and gives suspicion that persons of no mean station or opportunity were concerned in it.
It is not easy to guess how an individual, with means of worldly offence so apparently inadequate, could be an object of such strange jealousy any where. But, in all nations, there are some, whose love of revenge the laws of their country cannot restrain, or whose officiousness mistakes opportunity for right.
Longford at any rate has not yet been heard of; and I cannot flatter myself that he is any longer in existence. If he lives, it is in some remote land, where he can find no means of communication with his European friends; and where he must have endured hardships too shocking to be contemplated, if they could prevent him from writing to those who certainly possessed his highest love and esteem.
It was my intention to have closed this letter with an account of the discoveries I had made, or the suppositions I had formed regarding his earlier
istory. But I have just obtained important additional clues from some papers, which he had left in the hands of Ellen M— and which have now been committed to my care and inspection. It would be impossible, without more brevity than is proper, to include what it may be interesting to relate from them in the present letter: and I have no choice therefore but to reserve the termination of my story for another; which the lateness of the present month will not allow me time to write. ,
H. S. F.
July 18, 1808.
No. XLII. Complaint of a Literary Man.
Qui notus nimis omnibus,
Sen. TO THE RUMINATOR. SIR, To a mind like your's, constantly ruminating on the diversified and contradictory moral traits of our species, and touched with a keen sensibility at its failings and misfortunes, I feel an insurmountable impulse to open the anxieties of a melancholy and overloaded heart. If you cannot speak comfort to me, methinks* the mere act of pouring out the fulness of my mind will give me relief.
I am a man who have given up the principal part of my life to literature, which however I have done rather as an amusement than a business. I have read and written as whim directed, without any other view, than that of a pleasing occupation of my time, unless perhaps it was mingled with the hope of a reward in the acquisition of literary fame. Thus have I whiled away the vigour of my youth and my manhood; and the hour is arrived, when I
* I am happy to see this word justified in Jamieson's Etymological Scotch Dictionary. Editor,