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LESSON XXI.

NORA'S VOW.

BY WALTER SCOTT.
BEN-CHRUAICHAN, (ben-kro'kan.) . .

KIL CHURN, (kil kurn'.)
1. HEAR what Highland Nora said:

“The earlie's son I will not wed',
Should all the race of nature die,
And none be left but he and I'.
For all the gold, for all the gear,
And all the lands both far and near,
That ever valor lost and won,

I would not wed the earlie's son!”
2. “A maiden's vows',” old Callum spoke',

“Are lightly made', and lightly broke':
The heather on the mountain's hight :
Begins to bloom in purple light';
The frost-wind soon shall sweep away
That luster deep from glen and brae'; /
Yet Nora', ere its bloom be gone',

May blithely wed the earlie's son.” 3. “The swan',” she said, “the lake's clear breast

May barter for the eagle's nest';
The Awe's fierce stream may backward turn';
Ben-Chruaichan fall', and crush. Kilchurn';
Our kilted clans, when blood is high,
Before their foes may turn and fly';
But I', were all these marvels done',

Would never wed the earlie's son'." 4. Still in the water-lily's shade

Her wonted nest the wild swan made';
Ben-Chruaichan stands as fast as ever';
Still downward foams the Awe's fierce river';
To shun the clash of foeman's steel',
No Highlan { brogue has turn'd the heel':
But Nora's hwart 1.lost' and won';
She's wedded to the earlie's son

LESSON XXII.

THE MORAL NATURE CONSTITUTES THE MAN.

BY H. GILES. 1. The moral nature is that which, in the highest sense, con. stitutes the man. Faithful to this', the man is true'; unfaithful to it', he is false'. Now this, I say, belongs not to the class', not to the profession', not to the office', but distinctly to the man! The moral feelings', then, are those in which he is most independent'. These are his without hinderance' or limitation'; they are his absolutely and supremely.

2. The moral feelings need no external instrumentality'; they are complete in themselves'. The command of conscience to the will, and the answer of the will in obedience to it, constitute the perfection and sufficiency of virtue. This nothing can limit or destroy! A right will' is right action'; and, though such a will be the movement of a spirit imprisoned in a body all paralyzed and moveless', it is stronger than the universe!

3. Is not this a grand privilege of man', immortal man', that though he may not be able to stir a finger',—that though a moth may crush him',—that merely by a righteous will he is raised above the stars'; that by it he originates a good in the universe which the universe could not annihilate'; a good which can defy extinction, though all created energies of intelligence or matter were combined against it'? It is not thus with the desires and appetites': they do need an outward instrumentality! Without the outward instrumentality' they become occasions of uneasiness' and pain, and with it in the utmost fulness', they have yet no perfection!

4. But a man whose moral nature is ascendant commands these. He is not the subject', but the superior', of circumstances. He is free'; nay, more, he is a king'; and, though this sovereignty may have been won by many desperate battles, once on the throne, and holding the scepter with a firm grasp, he has a royalty of which neither time nor accident can strip him. Years do not enfeeble', they ennoble' it; they do not dim', they brighten'it; they surround it with the halo of a purer atmosphere, and they draw men to do more affectionate homage to its venerable beauty

5. Mutability comes not near io; there is no power that it has cause to fear; there is no enemy that can prevail against it. It is the only royalty which revolutions cannot overturn. Neither does earthly estate interfere with its dominion or its grandeur. In the dungeon' or on the rack', at the stake' or on the scaffold', it contracts no infamy from its situation; pay, it is the more resplendent in its kingliness. It is not often found in palaces', but, when within them', it is their finest presence. It does not always rule in the breasts of monarchs'; but, when it does', it marks them truly for the Lord's anointed'.

6. It is the real inspiration of a princely nature; and, where it is absent, a star is but a dazzling blotch, and a $cepter but a mischievous or a foolish bauble. It has no sure promise of worldly goods; it is not always attended with outward prosperity; it has not always gay dwellings, and sometimes it has none; it needs no show of outward pomp; it has no regal costume, no royal banquets; it does not, by any virtue of its dignity, wear purple and fine linen, or fare sumptuously every day; but, without whereon to lay its head', it may yet be of that celestial eminence which angels gaze on to admire'; covered with rags and sickness', it may be odious to the sight of mortals', and yet be precious in the sight of Heaven'.

LESSON XXIII.

EXCELSIOR.

BY H. W. LONGFELLOW.
1. The shades of night were falling fast,

As through an Alpine village pass’d
A youth, who bore, ’mid snow and ice,
A banner with a strange device,

Excelsior!
2. His brow was sad; his eye beneath

Flash'd like a falchion from its sheath,
And like a silver clarion rung
The accents of that unknown tongue,

Excelsior!

3. In happy homes he saw the light

Of household fires gleam warm and bright;
Above, the spectral glaciers shone;
And from his lips escaped croan --

Excelsior!'ad

4. “Try not the pass'!" the old man said;

“Dark lowers the tempest overhead;
The roaring torrent's deep and wide'!”
And loud that clarion voice replied,

Excelsior!
5. “Beware the pine-tree's wither'] branch.

Beware the awful avalanche!!”
This was the peasant's last good-night;
A voice replied, far up the height,

Excelsior!
6. At break of day, as heavenward

The pious monks of Saint Bernard
Utter'd the oft-repeated prayer,
A voice cried, through the startled air,

Excelsior! .
7. A traveler, by the faithful hound,

Half-buried in the snow was found,
Still grasping, in his hand of ice,
That banner with the strange device,

Excelsior!
8. There in the twilight, cold and gray',

Lifeless', but beautiful, he lay';
And from the sky', serene and far,
A voice fell, like a falling star,-

Excelsior!

LESSON XXIV.

THANATOPSIS.

BY W. C. BRYANT.
1. To him', who in the love of nature holds

Communion with her visible forms', she speaks
A various language'; for his gayer hours
She has a voice of gladness, and a smile
And eloquence of beauty; and she glides
Into his darker musings, with a mild
And healing sympathy', that steals away
Their sharpness ere he is aware. When thoughts

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Of the last bitter hour come like a blight.
Over thy spirit', and sad images
Of the stern agony', and shroud', and pall',
And breathless darkness', and the narrow house',
Make thee to shudder and grow sick at heart';
Go forth, under the open sky, and list
To Nature's teaching, while from all around-
Earth and her waters, and the depths of air,
Comes a still voice-Yet a few days, and thee
The all-beholding sun shall see no more
In all his course'; nor yet in the cold ground,
Where thy pale form was laid with many tears',
Nor in the embrace of ocean', shall exist
Thy image!

Earth', that nourish'd thee', shall claim
Thy growth, to be resolved to earth again';
And, lost each human trace', surrendering up
Thine individual being', shalt thou go
To mix forever with the elements,
To be a brother to th' insensible rock
And to the sluggish clod, which the rude swain
Turns with his share and treads upon. The oak
Shall send his roots abroad', and pierce thy mold'.
Yet not to thine eternal resting-place
Shalt thou retire alone,-nor couldst thou wish
Couch more magnificent. Thou shalt lie down
With patriarchs of the infant world',—with kings',
The powerful of the earth',-the wise', the good',
Fair forms, and hoary seers of ages past',
All in one mighty sepulcher.

The hills', Rock-ribb'd', and ancient as the sun'; the vales', Stretching in pensive quietness between'; The venerable woods'; rivers that move In majesty', and the complaining brooks That make the meadows green'; and, pour'd round all, Old Ocean's gray and melancholy waste', Are but the solemn decorations all Of the great tomb of man. The colden sun', The planets', all the infinite host heaven', Are shining on the sad abodes of Through the still lapse of ages 1 0 The globe are but a handful, to' B That slumber in its bosom.'

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All that tread

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