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For, O! he stood beside me, like my youth,-
The beautiful is vanished — and returns not.” Stu. There is a well-known poem, by James Shirley, which seems to me to afford an example of low pitch:
“ The glories of our blood and state
Are shadows, not substantial things;
Must tumble down,
With the poor crook'ed scythe and spade.” Pro. The closing sentences from the address of the young and gifted Robert Emmett, who was hung, in 1803, in Dublin, having been convicted of high treason against the British crown, afford another appropriate example of low pitch:
“I am going to my cold and silent grave. My lamp of life is nearly extinguished. My race is run. The grave opens to receive
- and I sink into its bosom! I have but one request to ask, at my departure, from this world ; — it is the charity of its silence. Let no man write my epitaph ; for, as no man who knows my motives dare now vindicate them, let not prejudice or ignorance asperse them. Let them and me repose in obscurity and peace, tomb remain uninscribed, until other times and other men can do justice to my character. When my country takes her place among the nations of the earth, — then, and not till then, - let my epitaph be written! I have done.”
Stu. Thomas Moore's lines, on the death of the same Robert Emmett, are in a like subdued strain:
60! breathe not his name ; let it sleep in the shade,
Where cold and unhonored his relics are laid :
But the night-dew that falls, though in silence it weeps
Shall long keep his memory green in our souls.”
“ Night, sable goddess ! from her ebon throne,
An awful pause, prophetic of her end.”
Pro. A monotone is intonation without change of pitch; that is, a fullness of tone without ascent or descent on the scale. The following passage, from Milton, exemplifies the tone:
· High on a throne of royal state, which far
Satan exalted sat.” The tone is often appropriate in solemn and sublime descriptions; and there are many passages in the Book of Job in which it may be employed with suitable effect; as in the following: “ Fear came upon me,
CXXV. - COLUMBUS DISCOVERS THE NEW WORLD.
PRONE, a., inclined ; bending down.
SUAV'I-TY (swăv-), n., sweetness.
In his computations Cclumbus supposed that the island of Ci-pan'go, or Jap-an', was In about the situation or Fivrida ; and at this island he hoped first to arrive.
1. The breeze had been fresh all day, with more sea than usual, and they had made great progress. At sunset they had stood again to the west, and were plowing the waves at a rapid rate, the Pinta keeping the lead, from her superior sailing. The greatest animation prevailed throughout the ships; not an eye was closed that night. As the evening darkened, Columbus took his station on the top of the cabin of his vessel, ranging his eye along the dusky horizon, and maintaining an intense and unremitting watch.
2. About ten o'clock he thought he beheld a light glimmering at a great distance. Fearing that his eager hopes might deceive him, he called to Pedro, a gentleman of the king's bed-chamber, and inquired whether he saw a light in that direction. The latter replied in the affirmative. Columbus, yet doubtful whether it might not be some delusion of the fancy, called still another, and made the same inquiry. By the time the latter had ascended the round-house the light had disappeared.
3. They saw it once or twice afterward, in sudden and passing gleams, as if it were a torch in the bark of a fisherman, rising and sinking with the waves, or in the hand of some person on shore, borne up and down as he walked from house to house. So transient and uncertain were these gleams, that few attached any importance to them. Columbus, however, considered them as certain signs of land, and, moreover,
that the land was inhabited.
4. They continued their course until two in the morning, when a gun from the Pinta gave the joyful signal of land. It was first discovered by a mariner named Rodrigo; but the reward was afterward adjudged to Columbus, for having previously perceived the light. The land was now clearly seen about two leagues distant; whereupon they took in sail, and lay to, waiting impatiently for the dawn.
5. The thoughts and feelings of Columbus, in this little space of time, must have been tumultuous and intense. At length, in spite of every difficulty and danger, he had accomplished his object; the great mystery of the ocean was revealed; his theory, which had been the scoff of sages, was triumphantly established; he had secured to himself a glory which must be as durable as the world itself.
6. It is difficult to conceive the feelings of such a man at such a moment; or the conjectures which must have thronged upon his mind, as to the land before him, covered with darkness! That it was fruitful was evident, from the vegetables which floated from its shores. He thought, too, that he perceived the fragrance of aromatic groves. The moving light he had beheld proved it the residence of man. But what were its inhabitants ?
7. Were they like those of the other parts of the globe ? or were they some strange and monstrous race, such as the imagination was prone in those days to give to all remote and unknown regions? Had he come upon some wild island far in the Indian Sea ? or was this the famed Cipango itself, the object of his golden fancies? A thousand speculations of the kind must have swarmed upon him, as, with his anxious crews, he waited for the night to pass away; wondering whether the morning light would reveal a savage wilderness, or dawn upon spicy groves, and glittering fanes, and gilded cities, and all the splendor of oriental civilization.
8. It was on Friday morning, the 12th of October, 1492, that Columbus first beheld the New World. As the day dawned, he saw before him a level island, several leagues in extent, and covered with trees like a continual orchard. Though apparently uncultivated, it was populous, for the inhabitants were seen issuing from all parts of the woods, and running to the shore.
9. Columbus made signal for the ships to cast anchor, and the boats to be manned and armed. He entered his own boat, richly attired in scarlet, and holding the royal standard. As he approached the shore, he was delighted with the purity and suavity of the atmosphere, the crystal transparency of the sea, and the extraordinary beauty of the vegetation. On landing, he threw himself on his knees, kissed the earth, and with tears of joy returned thanks to God.
CXXVI. - HOW TO HAVE WHAT WE LIKE.
ATTIC, n., the upper story.
occult or secret chemistry.
holy of holy places. EN-CO-VI-AS'TIC, a., full of praise.
TRANS-MU-TA’TION, N., change into an
other substance or form. E-LIX'IR VI'TÆ, n., an imaginary liq
uor for transmuting metals into
gold. SUB-LIMED', pp., brought into a state
of vapor by heat.
Do not say mettls for metals ; kine for coin ; kittles for kët'tles.
Hard by a poet's attic lived a chemist,
Or alchemist, who had a mighty
Faith in the elixir vitæ ;