« ZurückWeiter »
came. Eunices looked around in dismay. The walls were too lofty to be scaled, the gate too strong to be forced. But Idone had been gazing at a wicket near the principal entrance, and she called him to look whether it might not be opened. It was insecurely guarded, and a vigorous blow from Eunices forced it from its fastenings, and in a moment he was in the court of the castle. But his toils had only just begun, for as soon as he was entered, he found himself engaged in ortal combat with Biastes. Idone gazed at the warriors, and she raised her eyes to heaven to implore its blessing on her son. An eagle and a vulture were wheeling in the air at the moment, contending for the prey which the latter was bearing away in its talons. Idone saw with a feeling of joy that the eagle was the victor, for she thought it was an omen that the bearing of Hermas should return in triumph from the field. Meanwhile, the combat was hot, and the result seemed doubtful. The pagan was strong and experienced in fight, but the active Eunices warded off or escaped from the weight of his blows, and was often enabled to annoy his foe by the rapidity of his movements. Once, indeed, a heavy stroke descended full upon his helmet, and the youth was brought down upon his knee. Idone uttered a cry of anguish, but in a moment she saw that her son had recovered from this disadvantage, and that the pagan had received another wound. Faint with the heat of the conflict, both now paused as by mutual consent, and Idone hastened to bring to her young warrior the refreshment which she had provided for him. At the moment that he was about to raise the flask of wine to his lips, Idone perceived that the page of Biastes was preparing to annoy him, as he had annoyed Callistus, by a discharge of arrows. Unhesitatingly she stepped before him, and received the shaft which had been aimed at her son upon the shield of Alciphron. The trusty buckler cast off the dart; and Eunices, secure from the assaults of his enemy, drank deeply of the wine which had been given to him, and, like a lion darting upon his prey, sprang forth once more to the battle. As he raised his sword to strike, the page let fly another arrow, but a rapid movement of Idone diverted its course, it glanced aside, and just rasing her hand in its flight, fell powerless against the castle wall. The combat was renewed, but it was now manifestly unequal. Flushed with the hope of victory, Eunices pressed more and more vigorously upon his foe, whose resistance became fainter and fainter, till at length, unable to parry the thrusts of his antagonist, he fell prostrate upon the turf, and with a deep groan his spirit passed away.
With eyes dazzled by the unwonted light, and steps feeble through his long confinement, came Hermas leaning upon the arm of his son and deliverer towards the spot where the combat had taken place. Idone lay, under the tree where Eunices had placed her ere he sprang forth to seek for his father. As the warriors approached, she rose to her feet, and made an effort to clasp the neck of her husband, but her strength failed her, and she would have fallen, had not Eunices quickly been at her side to stay her up. “She is faint through joy,” said he. Idone shook her head. “Hermas,” she said, “ Hermas, my lord, my husband; Hermas, crown of my glory, idol of my heart, -art thou restored to me thus, my Hermas? Have I longed with more than mortal longing to see this hour ? and is it granted to me but to mock me? I am dying, Hermas; the poison has entered into my veins, the shaft that wounded me has stricken me to death.” Eunices uttered a cry of horror, as the truth flashed across him. The dart, which had so lightly grazed his mother's hand that a thorn would have made a deeper wound, that dart was poisoned. He looked at her a moment, then, throwing himself upon his face on the ground, he wept bitterly.
Hermas knelt by his dying spouse, he took her hand in his, he placed his arm under her head. · Idone,” said he,
my own Idone.” She looked up, and her visage brightened. “Is it so, indeed," she cried, “and is my dream to be fulfilled thus? Yet," --and she cast her eyes towards her son, “ I could have wished it had been otherwise for his sake. But he will be happy-happy now and hereafter, though his happiness must be clouded with a moment's sorrow. Will he not, my Hermas ?” She was silent for a little space, gazing fondly on her husband; then again her eyes brightened, and she raised her head. “I see it now," she whispered eagerly, “I see the glory that was shown to me in my vision, and I know that the time is come. Hermas, my companion, my guide, my supporter, we have been parted in this vale of tears, but thou wilt not leave me now. The night is spent, the day breaks gloriously; Hermas, the bright light is already upon us; come, my husband, art thou ready for the journey ?” She sank back exhausted, but there was the same light upon her countenance. Hermas leaned upon her bosom. When Eunices looked up, he was an orphan.
THE LAST SUFFERINGS OF OUR LORD.
Being references to such passages of the Gospels as will, if read in the order here given, present a continuous narrative of the last week of our Saviour's Passion.
SUNDAY.-S. John xii. 9–11.
MONDAY.-S. Luke xix. 29–31. S. Matt. xxi. 4, 5. S. Luke xix. 32–38. S. John xii. 17, 18. S. Luke xix, 39-44. S. Matt. xxi. 10, 11, 14–16. Evening.-S. John xii. 20—36. S. Matt. xxi, 17.
TUESDAY.-S. Matt. xxi. 18-22. S. Mark xi. 15-19.
WEDNESDAY.-S. Mark xi. 20—33, S. Matt. xxi. 28–46. S. Matt. xxii. 1-33. S. Mark xii. 28–44. S. John xii. 37 50. S. Matt. xxiii. S. Mark xiii, 1–13. S. Matt. xxiv. 14–35. S. Luke xxi. 34-36. S. Matt. xxiv. 36-51. S. Matt. xxv. S. Matt. xxvi. 1-3. S. Luke xxii. 2–6.
THURSDAY.-S. Luke xxii. 7-13. Evening.-S. Luke xxii. 14—18. S. John xiii. 2—17. S. Luke xxii. 19, 21-23. S. John xii. 18–22. S. Matt. xxvi. 22–24. S. John xiii. 23–30. Night.-S. John xiii. 31–38. S. Luke xxii. 24–38. S. Matt. xxvi. 27–29. S. John xiv., xv., xvi., xvii. S. Matt. xxvi. 30—39. S. Luke xxii. 43, 44. S. Matt. xxvi. 40–46. S. John xviii. 29. S. Matt. xxvi. 48–50. S. John xviii. 10. S. Luke xxii. 51. S. John xviii. 11. S. Matt. xxvi. 53-56. S. Mark xiv. 51, 52. S. John xviii. 12—24. S. Mark xiv. 53–68. S. John xviii. 18. S. Matt. xxvi. 71–74. S. Luke xxii. 61, 62.
FRIDAY.— Very early, before sunrise.-S. Luke xxii. 66–71. S. Matt. xxvii. 1-10. S. John xviii. 28–40. S. John xix. 114. Six o'clock.-S. Matt. xxvii. 11-14. S. Luke xxiii. 4-17. S. Matt. xxvii, 17—32. S. Luke xxiii. 27–32. Nine o'clock. -S. Luke xxiii. 33. S. Matt. xxvii. 34. S. Luke xxiii. 34. S. John xix. 19-24. S. Matt. xxvii. 39-43. S. Luke xxiii. 3943. S. John xix. 25–27. Noon.-S. Matt. xxvii. 45. Three o'clock, afternoon.-S. Matt. xxvii. 46, 47. S. John xix. 28, 29. S. Matt. xxvii. 49. S. John xix. 30, to“ finished.” S. Luke xxiii. 46. S. Matt. xxvii. 51–56. S. John xix. 31–37. Nearly sunset.-S. Mark xv. 42–45. S. John xix. 39-42. S. Luke xxiii. 54–56.
SATURDAY.-S. Matt. xxvii. 62-66.
CHAPTERS ON CHURCHES AND CHURCH
BUILDERS. CHAPTER IV.-GUNDULF, ROCHESTER. In the days of William I. of England lived Gundulf,* the builder of the two castles of the Tower of London and of Rochester, and of the Cathedral Church in the latter city. He was a Norman by birth, a man of venerable conversation, a cleric from his boyhood, then a monk, and at length a Bishop; regulating his clerical life by the monastic rule, and adorning his monastic conversation with the dignity of the episcopate. While yet a youth he attracted the attention and gained the affection of William, Archdeacon and afterwards Archbishop of Rouen; and the two friends made a pilgrimage together to the holy city, that having visited the places of the Incarnation, Passion, and Ascension of our Blessed Lord, they might ever after have a more cheering recollection of those sacred events. Lovers of the heavenly country, they arrive, after many dangers, at the earthly Jerusalem; they pour forth their prayers on the spot which our Lord had pressed with His feet, and kiss the place where the cross was raised, where He was buried, and whence at last He ascended into heaven.
* This account of Gundulf is chiefly extracted from a life written by a contemporary monk of Rochester, printed in Wharton's “Anglia Sacra.”
They suffered much on their return, and Gundulf especially was so worn with travel, that one day his companions left him behind unwittingly, and did not miss him till a nobleman of the party all at once observed his absence, and running back found him unable to stand, and resigning himself to death. The good nobleman look him on his shoulders, and bore him to his companions, by whose care he recovered.
But the greatest peril of the pilgrims was in a storm at sea. In their extremity they vowed that they would assume the monastic habit if they escaped. Gundulf accordingly became one of the brethren of Bec, Herluin the founder being still alive. His virtues were soon observed and rewarded,
and he became sacristan of the Church of the Blessed Virgin at Bec, an office of no great rank, but one which he held invaluable for the part that it implied in all sacred offices.
Here sprung up a friendship between Gundulf, and a still more eminent inan.
Anselm entered the monastery in the same year with Gundulf, and was so charmed with his conversation, that it was among his first wishes that he should be accounted another Gundulf, and Gundulf another Anselm. Anselm, who was more deeply read in the Scriptures, was the more frequent speaker; Gundulf, who had the tenderer spirit, wept most.
The one planted, the other watered; the one uttered divine discourses, the other deep sighs. Anselm would sometimes say to Gundulf, “ You are always seeking to sharpen your mind on my whetstone, but you never suffer me to sharpen my mind on your whetstone: speak, I beseech you, that I too may learn something from
When Lanfranc was made Abbot of Caen, he associated Gundulf with himself in the cares of his new office; and when, after the conquest, he became Archbishop of Canterbury, because even in secular affairs, Gundulf's industry and wisdom were remarkable, he made him the steward of his household. The reputation of Gundulf, as well for wisdom as for sanctity, increased daily; and at length, through the influence of Lanfranc he was made
Bishop of Rochester, and enthroned (March 19th, 1077) amid universal acclamations.
It would be wrong to conceal the fact that there was something more than a desire to give a worthy Bishop to Rochester which determined Lanfranc in this choice. We have already seen in the time of Dunstan, the commencement of very grievous attacks upon the secular Clergy by the monastic bodies; and Lanfranc, imbued with the spirit of one of the most rigid orders, was bent on hurrying the secular Clergy to their fall. The chapter of Rochester had hitherto been composed of secular canons, and it was agreed upon between Gundulf and Anselm, that in the event of Gundulf's consecration, they should be replaced by a convent of monks. With this understanding certain possessions of the Church of Rochester, which had been held by the Archbishop of Canterbury, were restored, and fit preparations were made for the reception of the larger and wealthier body. The old Church,* which was almost in ruins, was taken down and a new one commenced, the monastic buildings surrounding it at convenient distances; and the work was concluded within a few years, partly by the munificent donations of Lanfranc. When all was done, some of the five Clergy, which was the whole number found there, took the habit, and others being added to them, the number of monks soon amounted to upwards of sixty.
However pure the intentions of such men as Lanfranc and Gundulf must have been, we cannot but observe that this was direct oppression and robbery of one order, for the aggrandizement and wealth of another. It is but one case of hundreds, and it is also a part of a system which was afterwards terribly avenged on the monastic bodies. They enriched themselves then at the expense of the secular Clergy, and added the direct sacrilege of appropriations; and soon their wealth excited the cupidity of princes. der of monasteries had become a regular system in the reign of Henry V., and was, as is sufficiently well known, carried on by several persons, on pretence of founding other religious houses, (the very pretence used for the suppression of the secular Clergy and the seizing of their temporalities,) until the time of the great
* "A bishopric, with a college of secular priests, was founded at Rochester, in the reign of Ethelbert, the Anglo-Saxon King of Kent, soon after Augustine the monk had landed in the Isle of Thanet, and preached the Gospel at Canterbury. The college was endowed with land, southward of the city, appropriately named Priestfield, but its revenue was small. A Church was begun to be erected in A.D. 600, and was finished four years afterwards, when it was dedicated to the honour of God and the Apostle S. Andrew. Rochester was almost destroyed in the year 676 by Ethelbert, King of Mercia, and the city suffered greatly during the invasions of England by the Danes, in the ninth century; but it appears to have recovered its importance in the reign of Athelstan, when there were three mint masters, two who superintended the king's coinage, and one who superintended that of the Bishop."-Winkle's Cathedrals, I. 105.