Infomotions, Inc.The Heidenmauer : or, The Benedictines : a legend of the Rhine / by J. Fenimore Cooper. / Cooper, James Fenimore, 1789-1851

Author: Cooper, James Fenimore, 1789-1851
Title: The Heidenmauer : or, The Benedictines : a legend of the Rhine / by J. Fenimore Cooper.
Publisher: New York : Stringer and Townsend, 1856.
Tag(s): heidenmauer; emich; ulrike; berchthold; deurckheim; heinrich; limburg; hartenburg; bonifacius; burgomaster; abbot; meta; count emich; lord emich; abbey; young berchthold; count; father arnolph; monk
Contributor(s): Eric Lease Morgan (Infomotions, Inc.)
Versions: original; local mirror; HTML (this file); printable; PDF
Services: find in a library; evaluate using concordance
Rights: GNU General Public License
Size: 147,703 words (average) Grade range: 12-15 (college) Readability score: 54 (average)
Identifier: heidenmauer00cooprich
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**From mighty wrongs to petty perfidy, 
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Entered according to the Act of Congress, in the year 1882, by CABEYMid 
LEA, in the Clerk s Office of the District Court of the Eastern District of 


I shall crave your forbearance a little ; may be, I will call upon yom 
anon, for some advantage to yourself." 

Measure for Measure. 

CONTRARY to a long-established usage, a summer had been 
passed within the walls of a large town ; but, the moment of 
liberation arrived, the bird does not quit its cage with greater 
pleasure, than that with which post-horses were commanded, 
We were four in a light travelling caleche, which strong Nor 
man cattle transported merrily towards their native province. 
For a time we quitted Paris, the queen of modern cities, with 
its tumults and its order ; its palaces and its lanes ; its ele 
gance and its filth ; its restless inhabitants and its stationary 
politicians; its theories and its practices; its riches and its 
poverty ; its gay and its sorrowful ; its rentiers and its patriots ; 
its young liberals and its old illiberals ; its three estates and 
its equality ; its delicacy of speech and its strength of con 
duct ; its government of the people and its people of no gov 
ernment ; its bayonets and its moral force ; its science and its 
ignorance ; its amusements and its revolutions ; its resistance 
that goes backward, and its movement that stands still ; its 
milliners, its philosophers, its opera-dancers, its poets, its 
fiddlers, its bankers, and its cooks. Although so long en 
thralled within the barriers, it was not easy to quit Paris, en 
tirely without regret Paris, which every stranger censures 
and every stranger seeks ; which moralists abhor and imitate ; 
which causes the heads of the old to shake, and the hearts of 
the young to beat ; Paris, the centre of so much that is ex 
cellent, and of so much that cannot be named ! 

That night we laid our heads on rustic pillows, far from the 
French capital. The succeeding day we snuffed the air of the 
sea. Passing through Artois and French Flanders, on the 
fifth morning we entered the new kingdom of Belgium, by the 
historical and respectable towns of Doua i, and Tournai, and 


Ath. At every step we met the flag which flutters over the 
pavilion of the Thuileries, and recognized the confident air 
and swinging gait of French soldiers. They had just been 
employed in propping the crumbling throne of the house of 
Saxe. To us they seemed as much at home as when they 
lounged on the Quai d Orsay. 

There was still abundant evidence visible at Brussels, of 
the fierce nature of the struggle that had expelled the Dutch. 
Forty-six shells were sticking in the side of a single building 
of no great size, while ninety-three grape-shot were buried in 
one of its pilasters ! In our own rooms, too, there were fearful 
signs of war. The mirrors were in fragments, the walls broken 
by langrage, the wood-work of the beds was pierced by shot, 
and the furniture was marked by rude encounters. The trees 
of the park were mutilated in a thousand places, and one of 
the little Cupids, that we had left laughing above the principal 
gate throe years before, was now maimed and melancholy, 
whilst its companion had altogether taken flight on the wings 
of a cannon-ball. Tnough dwelling in the very centre of so 
many hostile vestiges, we happily escaped the sight of human 
blood ; for we understood from the obliging Swiss who presides 
over the hotel, that his cellars, at all times in repute, were in 
more than usual request during the siege. From so much 
proof we were left to infer, that the Belgians had made stout 
battle for their emancipation, one sign at least that they merited 
to be free. 

Our road lay by Louvain, Thirlemont, Lidge, Aix-la-Cha- 
pelle, and Juliers, to the Rhine. The former of these towna 
had been the scene of a contest between the hostile armies, 
the preceding week. As the Dutch had been accused of un 
usual excesses in their advance, we looked out for the signs. 
How many of these marks had been already obliterated, we 
could not well ascertain ; but those which were still visible 
gave us reason to think that the invaders did not merit all the 
opprobrium they had received. Each hour, as life advances, 
am I made to see how capricious and vulgar is the immortality 
conferred by a newspaper ! 

It would be injustice to the ancient Bishopric of Liege to 
pass its beautiful scenery without a comment. The country 


possesses nearly every requisite for the milder and more rural 
sort of landscape ; isolated and innumerable farm-houses, 
herds in the fields, living hedges, a waving surface, and a ver 
dure to rival the emerald. By a happy accident, the road runs 
for miles on an elevated ridge, enabling the traveller to enjoy 
these beauties at his ease. 

At Aix-la-Chapelle we bathed, visited the relics, saw the 
ecene of so many coronations of emperors of more or less re 
aown, sat in the chair of Charlemagne, and went our way. 

The Rhine was an old acquaintance. A few years earlier, 
I had stood upon the sands, at Katwyck, and watched its peri 
odical flow into the North Sea, by means of sluices made in 
the short reign of the good King Louis, and, the same sum 
mer, I had bestrode it, a brawling brook, on the icy side of St. 
Gothard. We had come now to look at its beauties in its 
most beautiful part, and to compare them, so far as native par 
tiality might permit, with the well-established claims of our 
own Hudson. 

Quitting Cologne, its exquisite but incomplete cathedral, 
with the crane that has been poised on its unfinished towers 
five hundred years, its recollections of Rubens and his royal 
patroness, we travelled up the stream so leisurely as to examine 
all that offered, and yet so fast as to avoid the hazard of satiety. 
Here we met Prussian soldiers, preparing, by mimic service, 
for the more serious duties of their calling. Lancers were 
galloping, in bodies, across the open fields ; videttes were post 
ed, the cocked pistol in hand, at every hay-stack; while 
couriers rode, under the spur, from point to point, as if the 
great strife, which is so menacingly preparing, and which 
sooner or later must come, had actually commenced. As 
Europe is now a camp, these hackneyed sights scarce drew a 
took aside. We were in quest of the interest which nature, in 
her happier humors, bestows. 

There were ruined castles, by scores; gray fortresses; 
abbeys, some deserted and others yet tenanted ; villages and 
towns ; the seven mountains ; cliffs and vineyards. At every 
step we felt how intimate is the association between the 
poetry of Nature and that of art ; between the hill-side with 
its falling turret, and the moral feeling that lends them interest 


Here was an island, of no particular excellence, but the walli 
of a convent of .the middle ages crumbled on its surface. There 
was a naked rock, destitute of grandeur, and wanting in those 
tints which milder climates bestow, bat a baronial hold tottered 
on its apex. Here Cffisar led his legions to the stream, and 
there Napoleon threw his corps d armee on the hostile bank ; 
this monument was to Hoehe, and from that terrace the great 
Adolphus directed his battalions. Time is wanting to mellow 
the view of our own historical sites; for the sympathy that can 
be accumulated only by the general consent of mankind, has 
not yet clothed them with the indefinable colors of distance 
and convention. 

In the mood likely to be created by a flood of such recol 
lections, we pursued our way along the southern margin of 
this great artery of central Europe. We wondered at the 
vastness of the RheinfeJs, admired the rare jewel of the ruin 
ed church at Baccarach, and marvelled at the giddy precipice 
on which a prince of Prussia even now dwells, in the eagle- 
like grandeur and security of the olden time. On reaching 
Mayence, the evening of the second day, we deliberately and, 
as we hoped, impartially compared what had just been seen, 
with that which is so well and so affectionately remembered. 

I had been familiar with the Hudson from childhood. The 
great thoroughfare of all who journey from the interior of the 
state towards the sea, necessity had early made me acquainted 
with its windings, its promontories, its islands, its cities, and 
its villages. Even its hidden channels had been professionally 
examined, and time was when there did not stand an unknown 
seat on its banks, or a hamlet that had not been visited. Here 
then was the force of deep impressions to oppose to the in 
fluence of objects still visible. 

To me it is quite apparent that the Rhine, while it frequently 
possesses more of any particular species of scenery, within a 
given number of miles, than the Hudson, has none of so great 
excellence. It wants the variety, the noble beauty, and the 
broad grandeur of the American stream. The latter, within 
the distance universally admitted to contain the finest parts 
of the Rhine, is both a large and a small river ; it has its bays, 
its narrow passages among the meadows, its frowning gorges, 


tnd its reaches resembling Italian lakes; whereas the most 
that can be said of its European competitor, is that all these 
wonderful peculiarities are feebly imitated. Ten degrees of a 
lower latitude supply richer tints, brighter transitions of light 
and shadow, and more glorious changes of the atmosphere, to 
embellish the beauties of our western clime. In islands, too, 
the advantage is with the Hudson, for, while those of the 
Rhine are the most numerous, those of the former stream are 
bolder, better placed, and, in every natural feature, of more 

When the comparison between these celebrated rivers is ex 
tended to their artificial accessories, the result becomes more 
doubtful. The buildings of the older towns and villages of 
Europe seem grouped especially for effect, as seen in the dis 
tant view, though security was in truth the cause, while the 
spacious, cleanly, and cheerful villages of America must com 
monly be entered, to be appreciated. In the other hemisphere, 
the maze of roofs, the church-towers, the irregular faces of 
wall, and frequently the castle rising to a pinnacle in the rear, 
give a town the appearance of some vast and antiquated pile 
devoted to a single object. Perhaps the boroughs of the Rhine 
have less of this picturesque, or landscape effect, than the 
villages of France and Italy, for the Germans regard space 
more than their neighbors, but still are they less commonplace 
than the smiling and thriving little marts that crowd the bor 
ders of the Hudson. To this advantage must be added that 
which is derived from the countless ruins, and a crowd of 
recollections. Here, the superiority of the artificial auxiliaries 
of the Rhine ceases, and those of her rival come into the as 
cendant. In modern abodes, in villas, and even in seats, those 
of princes alone excepted, the banks of the Hudson have 
scarcely an equal in any region. There are finer and nobler 
edifices on the Brenta, and in other favored spots, certainly, 
but I know no stream that has so many that please and attract 
the eye. As applied to moving objects, an important feature 
in this comparison, the Hudson has perhaps no rival, in any 
river that can pretend to a picturesque character. In numbers, 
in variety of rig, in beauty of form, in swiftness and dexterity 
of handling, and in general grace and movement, this extra* 


ordinary passage ranks amongst the first of the world. The 
yards of tall ships swing among the rocks and forests of the 
highlands, while sloop, schooner, and bright canopied steam-boat, 
yacht, periagua, and canoe are seen in countless numbers, deck 
ing its waters. There is one more eloquent point of difference 
that should not be neglected. Drawings and engravings of 
the Rhine lend their usual advantages, softening, and frequently 
rendering beautiful, objects of no striking attractions when 
seen as they exist ; while every similar attempt to represent 
the Hudson, at once strikes the eye as unworthy of its original. 

Nature is fruitful of fine effects in every region, and it is a 
mistake not to enjoy her gifts, as we move through life, on ac 
count of some fancied superiority in this, or that, quarter of the 
world. We left the Rhine, therefore, with regret, for, in its 
way, a lovelier stream can scarce be found. 

At Mayence we crossed to the right bank of the river, and 
passing by the Duchies of Nassau and Darmstadt, entered that 
of Baden, at Heidelberg. Here we sat upon the Tun, examin 
ed the castle, and strolled in the alleys of the remarkable 
garden. Thence we proceeded to Manheim, turning our faces, 
once more, towards the French capital. The illness of one of 
the party compelled us to remain a few hours in the latter 
city, which presented little for reflection, unless it were that 
this, like one or two other towns we had lately seen, served 
to convince us, that the symmetry and regularity which render 
large cities magnificent, cause those that are small to appear 

It was a bright autumnal day when we returned to the left 
bank of the Rhine, on the way to Paris. The wishes of the 
invalid had taken the appearance of strength, and we hoped to 
penetrate the mountains which bound the Palatinate on its 
south-western side, and to reach Kaiserslautern, on the great 
Napoleon road, before the hour of rest. The main object haa 
been accomplished, and, as with all who have effected their 
purpose, the principal desire was to be at home. A few posts 
convinced us that repose was still necessary to the invalid. 
This conviction, unhappily as I then believed, came too late, 
for we had already crossed the plain of the Palatinate, and 
were drawing near to the chain of mountains just mentioned. 


which are a branch of the Vosges, and are known in the 
country as the Haart. We had made no calculations for such 
an event, and former experience had caused us to distrust the 
inns of this isolated portion of the kingdom of Bavaria. I was 
just hitterly regretting our precipitation, when the church- 
tower of Duerckheim peered above the vineyards; for, on 
getting nearer to the base of the hills, the land became slightly 
undulating, and the vine abundant. As we approached, the 
village or borough promised little, but we had the word of the 
postilion that the post-house was an inn fit for a king ; and as to 
the wine, he could give no higher eulogium than a flourish of 
the whip, an eloquent expression of pleasure for a German of 
his class. We debated the question of proceeding, or of 
stopping, in a good deal of doubt, to the moment wnen the 
carriage drew up before the sign of the Ox. A substantial 
looking burgher came forth to receive us. There was the 
pledge of good cheer in the ample development of his person, 
which was not badly typified by the sign, and the hale hearty 
character of his hospitality removed all suspicion of the hour 
of reckoning. If he who travels much is a gainer in know 
ledge of mankind, he is sure to be a loser in the charities that 
sweeten life. Constant intercourse with men who are in the 
habit of seeing strange faces, who only dispose of their ser 
vices to those that are likely never to need them again, and 
who, of necessity, are removed from most of the responsibilities 
and affinities of a more permanent intercourse, exhibits the 
selfishness of our nature in its least attractive form. Policy 
may susrgest a specious blandishment of air, to conceal the 
ordinary design on the pocket of the stranger ; but it is in the 
nature of things that the design should exist. The passion of 
gain, like all other passions, increases with indulgence ; and 
k hus do we find those who dwell on beaten roads more ra- 
oacious than those in whom the desire is latent, for want of 

Our host of Duerckheim offered a pledge, in his honest 
countenance, independent air, and frank manner, of his also 
being above the usual mercenary schemes of another portion 
of the craft, who, dwelling in places of little resort, endeavor 
to take their revenge of fortune, by showing that they look 


upon every post-carriage as an especial God-send. He had a 
garden, too, into which he invited us to enter, while the horses 
were changing, in a way that showed he was simply desirous 
of being benevolent, and that he cared little whether we staid 
an hour or a week. In short, his manner was of an artless, 
kind, natural, and winning character, that strongly reminded ua 
of home, and which at once established an agreeable confi. 
dence that is of an invaluable moral effect. Though too ex 
perienced blindly to confide in national characteristics, we 
liked, too, his appearance of German faith, and more than all 
were we pleased with the German neatness and comfort, of 
which there were abundance, unalloyed by the swaggering 
pretension that neutralizes the same qualities among people 
more artificial. The house was not a beer-drinking, smoking 
caravanserai, like many hotels in that quarter of the world, 
but it had detached pavilions in the gardens, in which the 
wearied traveller might, in sooth, take his rest. With such 
inducements before our eyes, we determined to remain, and we 
were not long in instructing the honest burgher to that effect. 
The decision was received with great civility, and, unlike the 
immortal Falstaff, I began to see the prospects of taking " minft 
ease in mine inn" without having a pocket picked. 

The carriage was soon housed, and the baggage in the 
chambers. Notwithstanding the people of the house spoke 
confidently, but with sufficient modesty, of the state of the 
larder, it wanted several hours, agreeably to our habits, to the 
time of dinner, though we had enjoyed frequent opportunities 
of remarking that in Germany a meal is never unseasonable. 
Disregarding hints, which appeared more suggested by hu 
manity than the love of gain, our usual hour for eating was 
named, and, by way of changing the subject, I asked, 

Did I not see some ruins, on the adjoining mountain, as 
we entered the village 1" 

" We call Duerckheim a city, mein Herr," rejoined our host 
of the Ox ; " though none of the largest, the time has been 
when it was a capital ! " 

Here the worthy burgher munched his pipe and chuckled, 
for he was a man that had heard of such places as London, and 


Paris, and Pekin, and Naples, and St. Petersburg, or, haply, 
of the Federal City itself. 

"A capital ! it was the abode of one of the smaller Princes, 
suppose ; of what family was your sovereign, pray 1" 

" You are right, mein Herr. Duerckheim, before the French 
revolution, was a residence (for so the political capitals are call 
ed in Germany), and it belonged to the princes of Leiningen, 
who had a palace on the other side of the city (the place may 
be about half as large as Hudson, or Schenectady), which was 
burnt in the war. After the late wars, the sovereign was me 
diatise, receiving an indemnity in estates on the other side of 
the Rhine." 

As this term of mediatise has no direct synonyme in English, 
it may be well to explain its signification. Germany, as well 
as most of Europe, was formerly divided into a countless num 
ber of petty sovereignties, based on the principle of feudal 
power. As accident, or talent, or alliances, or treachery ad 
vanced the interests of the stronger of these princes, their 
weaker neighbors began to disappear altogether, or to take 
new and subordinate stations in the social scale. In this man 
ner has France been gradually composed of its original, but 
comparatively insignificant kingdom, buttressed, as it now is, 
by Brittany, and Burgundy, arid Navarre, and Dauphiny. and 
Provence, and Normandy, with many other states ; and, in like 
manner has England been formed of the Heptarchy. The con- 
federative system of Germany has continued more or less of 
this feudal organization to our own times. The formation of 
the empires of Austria and Prussia has, however, swallowed up 
many of these principalities, and the changes produced by the 
policy of Napoleon gave the death-blow, without distinction, to 
all in the immediate vicinity of the Rhine. Of the latter 
number were the Princes of Leiningen, whose possessions were 
originally included in the French republic, then in the empire, 
and have since passed under the sway of the King of Bavaria, 
who, as the legitimate heir of the neighboring Duchy of Deux 
Fonts, had a nucleus of sufficient magnitude in this portion of 
Germany, to induce the congress of Vienna to add to his do 
minions ; their object being to erect a barrier against the future 



aggrandizement of France. As the dispossessed sovereigns 
are permitted to retain their conventional rank, supplying 
wives and husbands, at need, to the reigning branches of the 
different princely families, the term mediatise has been aptly 
enough applied to their situation. 

" The young prince was here, no later than last week," con- 
tiriued our host of the Ox; " he lodged in that pavilion, where 
ho passed several days. You know that he is a son of the 
Duchess of Kent, and half-brother to the young princess who 
is likely, one day, to be queen of England." 

" Has he estates here, or is he still, in any way, connected 
with your government ]" 

" All they have given him is in money, or on the other side 
of the Rhine. He went to see the ruins of the old castle ; for 
he had a natural curiosity to look at a place which his ances 
tors had built." 

" It was the ruins of the castle of Leiningen, then, that I 
saw on the mountain, as we entered the town 1" 

" No, mein Herr. You saw the ruins of the Abbey of Lim- 
burg ; those of Hartenburg, for so the castle was called, lie 
farther back among the hills." 

" What ! a ruined abbey, and a ruined castle, too ! Here is 
sufficient occupation for the rest of the day. An abbey and a 
castle !" 

" And the Heidenmauer, and the Teufelstein." 

" How ! a Pagan s wall, and a Devil s stone ! You are rich 
in curiosities !" 

The host continued to smoke on philosophically. 

" Have you a guide who can take me, by the shortest way 
to these places ]" . 

" Any child can do that." 

" But one who can speak French is desirable for my Ger 
man is far from being classical." 

The worthy inn-keeper nodded his head. 

"Here is one Christian Kinzel," he rejoined, after a moment 
of thought, " a tailor who has not much custom, and who has 
lived a little in France ; he may serve your turn." 

I suggested that a tailor might find it healthful to stretch his 


The host of the Ox was amused with the conceit, and he 
fairly removed the pipe, in order to laugh at his ease. His 
mirth was hearty, like that of a man without guile. 

The affair was soon arranged. A messenger was sent for 
Christian Kinzel, and taking my little male travelling com 
panion by the hand, I went leisurely ahead, expecting the ap 
pearance of the guide. But, as the reader will have much to 
do with the place about to be described, it may be desirable that 
he should possess an accurate knowledge of its locality. 

Duerckheim lies in that part of Bavaria, which is commonly 
called the circle of the Rhine. The king, of the country 
named, may have less than half a million of subjects hi this 
detached part of his territories, which extends in one course 
from the river to Rhenish Prussia, and in the other from Darm 
stadt to France. It requires a day of hard posting to traverse 
this province in any direction, from which it would appear 
that its surface is about equal to two-thirds of that of Connec 
ticut. A line of mountains, resembling the smaller spurs of 
the Alleghanies, and which are known by different local names, 
but which are a branch of the Vosges, passes nearly through 
the centre of the district, in a north and south course. These 
mountains cease abruptly on their eastern side, leaving be 
tween them and the river, a vast level surface, of that descrip 
tion which is called " flats," or " bottom land " in America. This 
plain, part of the ancient Palatinate, extends equally on the 
other side of the Rhine, terminating as abruptly on the eastern 
as on the western border. In an air line, the distance between 
Heidelberg and Duerckheim, which lie opposite to each other 
on the two lateral extremities of the plain, may a little ex 
ceed twenty miles, the Rhine running equi-distant from both. 
There is a plausible theory, which says that the plain of the 
Palatinate was formerly a lake, receiving the waters of the 
Rhine, and of course discharging them by some inferior outlet, 
antil time, or a convulsion of the earth, broke through the bar 
rier of the mountains at Bingen, draining off the waters, and 
leaving the fertile bottom described. Irregular sand-hills were 
visible, as we approached Duerckheim, which may go to con 
firm this supposition, for the prevalence of northerly winds 
might easily have cast more of these light particles on the 


south-western than on the opposite shore. By adding that the 
eastern face of the mountains, or that next to the plain, is suf 
ficiently broken and irregular to be beautiful, while it is always 
distinctly marked and definite, enough has been said to enable 
us to proceed with intelligence. 

It would appear that one of the passes that has communi 
cated, from time immemorial, between the Rhine and the 
country west of the Vosges, issues on the plain through the 
gorge near Duerckheim. By following the windings of the 
valleys, the post-road penetrates, by an easy ascent, to the 
highest ridge, and following the water-courses that run into the 
Moselle, descends nearly as gradually into the Duchy of Deux 
Fonts, on the other side of the chain. The possession of this 
pass, therefore, in the ages of lawlessness and violence, was, 
in itself, a title to distinction and power ; since all who jour 
neyed by it, lay in person and effects more or less at the mercy 
of the occupant. 

On quitting the town, my little companion and myself im 
mediately entered the gorge. The pass itself was narrow, 
but a valley soon opened to the width of a mile, out of which 
issued two or three passages, besides that by which we had 
entered, though only one of them preserved its character for 
any distance. The capacity of this valley, or basin, as it must 
have been when the Palatinate was a lake, is much curtailed 
by an insulated mountain, whose base, covering a fourth of the 
area, stands in its very centre, and which doubtless was an 
island when the valley was a secluded bay. The summit of 
this mountain or island-hill is level, of an irregularly oval form, 
and contains some six or eight acres of land. Here stand the 
ruins of Limburg, the immediate object of our visit. 

The ascent was exceedingly rapid, and of several hundred 
feet; reddish free-stone appeared everywhere through the 
scanty soil, the sun beat powerfully on the rocks ; and I was 
beginning to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of pro 
ceeding, when the tailor approached, with the zeal of new-born 

" Voici Christian Kinzel !" exclaimed , to whom nov 
elty was always an incentive, and who, in his young life, had 
eagerly mounted Alp and Apennine, Jura and Calabrian hill. 


tower, monument, and dome, or whatever else served to raise 
him in the air; "Allons, grimpons!" 

We scrambled up the hill-side, and, winding among terracea 
on which the vine and vegetables were growing, soon reached 
the natural platform. There was a noble view from the sum 
mit, but it would be premature to describe it here. The whole 
surface of the hill furnished evidence of the former extent of 
the Abbey, a wall having encircled the entire place ; but the 
principal edifices had been built, and still remained, near the 
longitudinal centre, on the very margin of the eastern preci 
pice. Enough was standing to prove the ancient magnificence 
of the structure. Unlike most of the ruins which border the 
Rhine, the masonry was of a workmanlike kind, the walls be 
ing not only massive, but composed of the sand-stone just men 
tioned neatly hewn, for immense strata of the material exist 
in all this region. I traced the chapel, still in tolerable preser 
vation, the refectory, that never-failing solacer of monastic se 
clusion, several edifices apparently appropriated to the dormi 
tories, and some vestiges of the cloisters. There is also a 
giddy tower, of an ecclesiastical form, that sufficiently serves 
to give a character to the ruins. It was closed, to prevent 
idlers from incurring foolish risks by mounting the crazy steps ; 
but its having formerly been appropriated to the consecrated 
bells, was not at all doubtful. There is also a noble arch near, 
with several of its disjointed stones menacing the head of him 
who ventures beneath. 

Turning from the ruin, I cast a look at the surrounding val 
ley. Nothing could have been softer or more lovely than the 
near view. That sort of necessity, which induces us to cherish 
any stinted gift, had led the inhabitants to turn every foot of 
the bottom land to the best account. No Swiss Alp could 
have been more closely shaved than the meadows at my feet, 
and a good deal had been made of two or three rivulets that 
meandered among them. The dam of a rustic mill threw back 
the water into a miniature lake, and some zealous admirer of 
Neptune had established a beer-house on its banks, which was 
dignified with the sign of the " Anchor !" But the principal 
object in the interior or upland view, was the ruins of a castle, 
that occupied a natural terrace, or rather the projection of a 


rock, against the side of one of the nearest mountains. The 
road passed immediately beneath its walls, a short arrow-flight 
from the battlements, the position having evidently been chosen 
as the one best adapted to command the ordinary route of the 
traveller. I wanted no explanation from the guide to know 
that this was the castle of Hartenburg. It was still more 
massive than the remains of the Abbey, built of the same ma 
terial, and seemingly in different centuries ; for while one part 
was irregular and rude, like most of the structures of the 
middle ages, there were salient towers filled with embrasures, 
for the use of artillery. One of their guns, well elevated, might 
possibly have thrown its shot on the platform of the Abbey-hill, 
but with little danger even to the ruined walls. 

After studying the different objects in this novel and charm 
ing scene, for an hour, I demanded of the guide some account 
of the Pagan s Wall and of the Devil s Stone. Both were on 
the mountain that lay on the other side of the ambitious little 
lake, a long musket-shot from the Abbey. It was even possible 
to see a portion of the former, from our present stand; and the 
confused account of the tailor only excited a desire to see more. 
We had not come on, this excursion without a fit supply of 
road-books and maps. One of the former was accidentally in 
my pocket, though so little had we expected anything extraor 
dinary on this unfrequented road, that as yet it had not been 
opened. On consulting its pages now, I was agreeably disap 
pointed in finding that Duerckheim and its antiquities had not 
been thought unworthy of the traveller s especial attention. 
The Pagan s Wall was there stated to be the spot in which 
Attila passed the winter before crossing the Rhine, in his cele 
brated inroad against the capital of the civilized world, though 
its origin was referred to his enemies themselves. In short, it 
was believed to be the remains of a Roman camp, one of those 
advanced works of the empire, by which the Barbarians were 
held in check, and of which the Hun had casually and pru 
dently availed himself, in his progress south. The Devil s Stone 
was described as a natural rock, in the vicinity of the encamp 
ment, on which the Pagans had offered sacrifices. Of course 
the liberated limbs of the guide were put in requisition, to con- 


duct us to a spot that contained curiosities so worthy of even 
his exertions. 

As we descended the mountain of Limburg, Christian Kinzei 
lighted the way, by relating the opinions of the country, con 
cerning the places we had seen and were about to see. It 
would appear by this legend, that when the pious monks 
were planning their monastery, a compact was made with the 
Devil to quarry the stones necessary for so extensive a work, 
and to transport them up the steep acclivity. The induce 
ment held forth to the evil spirit, for undertaking a worK of 
this nature, was the pretence of erecting a tavern, in which, 
doubtless, undue quantities of Rhenish wine were to be quaff 
ed, cheating human reason, and leaving the undefended soul 
more exposed to the usual assaults of temptation. It would 
eeem, by the legends of the Rhine, that the monks often suc 
ceeded in outwitting the arch foe in this sort of compact, though 
perhaps never with more signal success than in the bargain in 
question. Completely deceived by the artifices of the men of 
God, the father of sin lent himself to the project with so much 
zeal, that the Abbey and its appendages were completed in a 
time incredibly short ; a circumstance that his employers took 
good care to turn to account, after their own fashion, by as 
cribing it to a miracle of purer emanation. By all accounts 
the deception was so well managed, that notwithstanding his 
proverbial cunning, the Devil never knew the true destination 
of the edifice until the Abbey-bell actually rang for prayers. 
Then, indeed, his indignation knew no bounds, and he proceed 
ed forthwith to the rock in question, with the fell intent of 
bringing it into the air above the chapel, and, by its fall, of im 
molating the monks and their altar together, to his vengeance. 
But the stone was too firmly rooted to be displaced even by the 
Devil ; and he was finally compelled, by the prayers of the 
devotees, who were now, after their own fashion of fighting, 
fairly in the field, to abandon this portion of the country in 
shame and disgrace. The curious are shown certain marks on 
the rock, which go to prove the violent efforts of Satan, on this 
occasion, and among others the prints of his form, left by seat 
ing himself on the stone, fatigued by useless exertions. Tho 
more ingenious even trace, in a sort of groove, evidence of the 


position of his tail, during- the time the baffled spirit was chew* 
ing the cud of chagrin on his hard stool. 

We were at the foot of the second mountain when Chris 
tian Kinzel ended this explanation. 

"And such is your Deurckheim tradition concerning the 
Devil s Stone ?" I remarked, measuring the ascent with the 

" Such is what is said in the country, mein Herr," returned 
the tailor ; " but there are people, hereabouts, who do not be 
lieve it." 

My little travelling companion laughed, and his eyes danced 
with expectation. 

" Allons, grimpons !" he cried again "Aliens voir ce Teu- 
felstein !" 

In a suitable time we were in the camp. It lay on an ad 
vanced spur of the mountain, a sort of salient bastion made by 
nature, and was completely protected on every side, but that 
at which it was joined to the mass, by declivities so steep as to 
be even descended with some pain. There was the ruin of a 
circular wall, half a league in extent, the stones lying in a 
confused pile around the whole exterior, and many vestiges of 
foundations and intersecting walls within. The whole area 
was covered with a young growth of dark and melancholy 
cedars. On the face exposed to the adjoining mountain, there 
had evidently been the additional protection of a ditch. 

The Teufelstein was a thousand feet from the camp. It is 
a weather-worn rock, that shows its bare head from a high 
point in the more advanced ranges of the hills. I took a seat 
on its most elevated pinnacle, and for a moment the pain of 
the ascent was forgotten. 

The plain of the Palatinate, far as eye could reach, lay in 
the view. Here and there the Rhine and the Neckar glittered, 
like sheets of silver, among the verdure of the fields, and 
tower of city and of town, of Manheim, Spires, and Worms, 
of nameless villages, and of German residences, were as 
plenty in the scene, as tombs upon the Appian Way. A dozen 
gray ruins clung against the sides of the mountains of Baden 
and Darmstadt, while the castle of Heidelberg was visible, in 
its romantic glen, sombre, courtly, and magnificent. The land- 


scape was German, and in its artificial parts slightly Gothic ; 
it wanted the warm glow, the capricious outlines, and seductive 
beauty of Italy, and the grandeur of the Swiss valleys and 
glaciers ; but it was the perfection of fertility and industry 
embellished by a crowd of useful objects. 

It was easy for one thus placed, to fancy himself surrounded 
by so many eloquent memorials of the progress of civilization, 
of the infirmities and constitution, of the growth and ambition 
of the human mind. The rack recalled the age of furious 
superstition and debased ignorance the time when the country 
lay in forest, over which the hunter ranged at will, contending 
with the beast for the mastery of his savage domain. Still the 
noble creature bore the image of God, and occasionally some 
master mind pierced the shades, catching glimpses of that 
eternal truth which pervades Nature. Then followed the 
Roman, with his gods of plausible attributes, his ingenious and 
specious philosophy, his accumulated and borrowed art, his 
concerted and overwhelming action, his love of magnificence, 
so grand in its effects, but so sordid and unjust hi its means, 
and last, the most impressive of all, that beacon-like ambition 
which wrecked his hopes on the sea of its vastness, with the 
evidence of the falsity of his system as furnished in his fall. 
The memorial before me showed the means by which he gain 
ed and lost his power. The Barbarian had been taught, in 
the bitter school of experience, to regain his rights, and in the 
excitement of the moment, it was not difficult to imagine the 
Huns pouring into the camp, and calculating their chances of 
success, by the vestiges they found of the ingenuity and re 
sources of their foes. 

The confusion of misty images that succeeded was an apt 
emblem of the next age. Out of this obscurity, after the long 
and glorious reign of Charlemagne, arose the baronial castle, 
with feudal violence and its progeny of wrongs. Then came 
the abbey, an excrescence of that mild and suffering religion, 
which had appeared on earth, like a ray of the sun, eclipsing 
the factitious brilliancy of a scene from which natural light 
had been excluded for a substitute of a meretricious and de 
ceptive quality. Here arose the long and selfish strife, be 
tween antagonist principles, that has not yet ceased. The 


struggle was between the power of knowledge and that of 
physical force. The former, neither pure nor perfect, descend 
ed to subterfuge and deceit ; while the latter vacillated be 
tween the dread of unknown causes, and the love of domina 
tion. Monk and baron came in collision; this secretly dis 
trusting the faith he professed, and that trembling at the con 
sequences of the blow which his own sword had given ; the fruits 
of too much knowledge in one, and of too little in the other, 
while both were the prey of those incessant and unwearied 
enemies of the race, the greedy passions. 

A laugh from the child drew my attention to the foot of the 
rock. He and Christian Kinzel had just settled, to their mutual 
satisfaction, the precise position that had been occupied by the 
Devil s tail. A more suitable emblem of his country than that 
boy, could not have been found on the whole of its wide surface. 
As secondary to the predominant English or Saxon stock, the 
blood of France, Sweden, and Holland ran, in nearly equal 
currents, in his veins. He had not far to seek, to find among 
his ancestors the peaceful companion of Penn, the Huguenot, 
the Cavalier, the Presbyterian, the follower of Luther and of 
Calvin. Chance had even deepened the resemblance ; for, a 
wanderer from infancy, he now blended languages in merry 
comments on his recent discovery. The train of thought that 
his appearance suggested was natural. It embraced the long 
and mysterious concealment of so vast a portion of the earth 
as America, from the acquaintance of civilized man ; its dis 
covery and settlement ; the manner in which violence and per 
secution, civil wars, oppression and injustice, had thrown men 
of all nations upon its shores ; the effects of this collision of 
customs and opinions, unenthralled by habits and laws of selfish 
origin ; the religious and civil liberty that followed ; the novel 
but irrefutable principle on which its government was based , 
the silent working of its example in the two hemispheres, one 
of which had already imitated the institutions that the other 
was struggling to approach, and all the immense results that 
were dependent on this inscrutable and grand movement of 
Providence. I know not indeed but my thoughts might have 
approached the sublime, had not Christian Kinzel interrupted 
them, by pointing out the spot where the Devil had kicked the 
stone, in his anger. 


Descending from the perch, we took the path to Deurck- 
ceim. As we came down the mountain, the tailor had many 
philosophical remarks to make, that were chiefly elicited by 
the forlorn condition of one who had much toil and little food. 
In his view of things, labor was too cheap, and wine and po 
tatoes were too dear. To what depth he might have pushed 
reflections bottomed on principles so natural, it is impossible to 
say, had not the boy started some doubts concerning the re 
puted length of the Devil s tail. He had visited the Jardin 
des Plantes at Paris, seen the kangaroos in the Zoological 
Garden in London, and was familiar with the inhabitants of a 
variety of caravans encountered at Rome, Naples, Dresden, 
and other capitals ; with the bears of Berne he had actually 
been on the familiar terms of a friendly visiting acquaintance. 
Having also some vague ideas of the analogies of things, he 
could not recall any beast so amply provided with such an 
elongation of the dorsal bone, as was to be inferred from 
Christian Kinzel s gutter in the Teufelstein. During the dis 
cussion of this knotty point, we reached the inn. 

The host of the Ox had deceived us in nothing. The viands 
were excellent, and abundant to prodigality. The bottle of old 
Deurckheimer might well have passed for Johannisberger, or 
for that still more deliciolis liquor, Steinberger, at London or 
New-York; and the simple and sincere civility with which 
every thing was served, gave a zest to all. 

It would have been selfish to recruit nature, without 
thought of the tailor, after so many hours of violent exercise 
in the keen air of the mountains. He too had his cup and his 
viands, and when both were invigorated by these natural 
means, we held a conference, to which the worthy post-master 
was admitted. 

The following pages are the offspring of the convocation 
held in the parlor of the Ox. Should any musty German an 
tiquary discover some immaterial anachronism, a name mis 
placed in the order of events, or a monk called prematurely 
from purgatory, he is invited to wreak his just indignation on 
Christian Kinzel, whose body and soul may St. Benedict of 
Limburg protect, for evermore, against all critics. 



Stand you both forth now ; stroke your chins, and swear by yeut 
beards that I am a knave. As You Like It, 

THE reader must imagine a narrow and secluded 
valley, for the opening scene of this tale. The time 
was that in which the day loses its power, casting 
a light on objects most exposed, that resembles 
colors seen through glass slightly stained ; a pecu 
liarity of the atmosphere, which, though almost of 
daily* occurrence in summer and autumn, is the 
source of constant enjoyment to the real lover of 
nature. The hue meant is not a sickly yellow, but 
rather a soft and melancholy glory, that lends to 
the hill-side and copse, to tree and tower, to stream 
and lawn, those tinges of surpassing loveliness that 
impart to the close of day its proverbial and 
soothing charm. The setting sun touched with 
oblique rays a bit of shaven meadow, that lay in a 
dell so deep as to owe this parting smile of nature 
to an accidental formation of the neighboring em 
inences, a distant mountain crest, that a flock had 
cropped and fertilized, a rippling current that glided 
in the bottom, a narrow beaten path, more worn by 
hoof than wheel, and a vast range of forest, that 
swelled and receded from the view, covering leagues 
of a hill-chase, that even tradition had never peopled. 
The spot was seemingly as retired as if it had been 
chosen in one of our own solitudes of the wilderness 


while it was, in fact, near the centre of Europe, and 
in the sixteenth century. But, notwithstanding the 
absence of dwellings, and all the other signs of the 
immediate presence of man, together with the 
wooded character of the scene, an American eye 
would not have been slow to detect its distinguish 
ing features, from those which mark the wilds of 
this country. The trees, though preserved with 
care, and flourishing, wanted the moss of ages, the 
high and rocking summit, the variety and natural 
wildness of the western forest. No mouldering 
trunk lay where it had fallen, no branch had been 
twisted by the gale and forgotten, nor did any up 
turned root betray the indifference of man to the 
decay of this important part of vegetation. Here 
and there, a species of broom, such as is seen occa 
sionally on the mast-heads of ships, was erected 
above some tall member of the woods that stood on 
an elevated point ; land-marks which divided the 
rights of those who were entitled to cut and clip ; 
the certain evidence that man had long before ex 
tended his sway over these sombre hills, and that, 
retired as they seemed, they were actually subject 
to all the divisions, and restraints, and vexations, 
which, in peopled regions, accompany the rights of 

For an hour preceding the opening of our tale, 
not a sound of any nature, beyond that of a mur 
muring brook, had disturbed the quiet of the silent 
little valley, if a gorge so narrow, and in truth so 
wild, deserved the name. There was not even a 
bird fluttering among the trees, nor a hawk soaring 
above the heights. Once, and for a minute only 
did a roebuck venture from its cover, and descend 
to the rivulet to drink. The animal had not alto 
gether the elastic bound, the timid and irresolute 
movement, nor the wandering eye of our own deer, 
but it was clearly an inhabitant of a forest ; foi 


while it in some degree confided in the protection, 
it also distrusted the power of man. No sooner was 
its thirst assuaged, than listening with the keenness 
of an instinct that no circumstances of accidental 
condition could destroy, it went up the acclivity 
again, and sought its cover with troubled steps. At 
the same instant, a grayhound leaped from among 
the trees, on the opposite side of the gorge, into the 
path, and began bounding back and forth, in the 
well-known manner of that species of dog, when 
exercising in restlessness, rather than engaged in 
the hot strife of the chase. A whistle called the 
hound back from its gambols, and its master entered 
the path. 

A cap of green velvet, bearing a hunting-horn 
above the shade, a coarse but neat frock of similar 
color, equally ornamented with the same badge of 
office, together with the instrument itself suspended 
from a shoulder, and the arms usual to one of that 
class, denoted a forester, or an individual charged 
with the care of the chase, and otherwise intrusted 
with a jurisdiction in the forest ; functions that 
would be much degraded by the use of the abused 
and familiar term of gamekeeper. 

The forester was young, active, and, notwith 
standing the rudeness of his attire, of a winning ex 
terior. Laying his fusee against the root of a tree, 
he whistled in the dog, and renewing the call, by 
means of a shrill instrument that was carried for 
that purpose, he soon succeeded in bringing its fel 
low to his side. Coupling the grayhounds in a leash, 
which he attached to his own person, he threw the 
horn from its noose, and blew a lively and short 
strain, that rolled up the valley in mellow and melo 
dious notes. When the instrument was removed 
from his lips, the youth listened till the last of the 
distant echoes was done, as if expecting some reply. 
He was not disappointed. Presently an answering 


blast came down the gorge, ringing among the 
woods, and causing the hearts of many of its ten 
ants to beat quick and fearfully. The sounds of the 
unseen instrument were far more shrill and wild 
than those of the hunting horn, while they wanted 
not for melancholy sweetness. They appeared both 
familiar and intelligible to the young forester, who 
no sooner heard them, than he slung the horn in its 
usual turn of the cord, resumed the fusee, and stood 
in an attitude of expectation. 

It might have been a minute before another youth 
appeared in the path, higher in the gorge, and ad 
vancing slowly towards the forester. His dress 
was rustic, and altogether that of a peasant, while 
in his hand he held a long, straight, narrow tube oi 
cherry wood, firmly wrapped with bark, having a 
mouth-piece and a small bell at the opposite end, 
resembling those of a trumpet. As he came forward, 
his face was not without an expression of ill humor, 
though it was rather rendered comic than grave, by 
a large felt hat, the front rim of which fell in an 
enormous shade above his eyes, rendering the trim 
cock in the rear, ludicrously pretending. His legs, 
like those of the forester, were encased in a sort of 
leathern hose, that left the limbs naked and free 
below the knee, while the garment above set so 
loosely and unbuttoned above that important joint, 
as to offer no restraint to his movements. 

" Thou art behind thy time, Gottlob," said the 
young forester, as the boor approached, " and the 
good hermit will not give us better welcome for 
keeping him from prayer. What has become of 
thy herd ?" 

" That may the holy man of the Heidenmauer 
declare, for it is more than I could answer were 
Lord Emich himself to put the question, and say, in 
the manner he is wont to use to the Abbot of Lira 
burg what hath become of thy herd Gottlob V 9 


"Nay, this is no trifling matter, if thou hast, in 
sooth, let the cattle stray ! Where hadst thou the 
beasts last in sight ?" 

" Here in the forest of Hartenburg, Master 
Berchthold, on the honor of an humble servitor of 
the Count." 

" Thou wilt yet lose this service, Gottlob, by thy 
carelessness !" 

" It would be a thousand pities were thy words 
to be true, for in that case Lord Emich would lose 
the honestest cow-herd in Germany, and it would 
go near to break my heart were the friars of Lim- 
burg to get him ! But the beasts cannot be far, and 
I will try the virtue of the horn once more, before I 
go home to a broken head and a discharge. Dost 
thou know, Master Berchthold, that the disgrace of 
which thou speakest never yet befell any of my 
family, and we have been keepers of cattle longer 
than the Friedrichs have been electors !" 

The forester made an impatient gesture, patted 
his hounds, and waited for the effects of the new 
blast, that his companion was by this time preparing 
to sound. The manner of Gottlob was that of en 
tire confidence in his own knowledge of his calling, 
for notwithstanding his words, his countenance at 
no time betrayed uneasiness for the fate of his trust. 
The valley was soon ringing with the wild and 
plaintive tones of the cherry-wood horn, the hind 
taking care to give the strains those intonations, 
wnich, by a mute convention, had from time im 
memorial been understood as the signal for collect 
ing a lost herd. His skill and faith were soon re 
warded, for cow after cow came leaping out of the 
forest, as he blew his air, and ere long the necessary 
number of animals were in the path, the younger 
beasts frisking along the way, with elevated tails 
and awkward bounds, while the more staid contrib 
utors of the dairy hurried on, with business-like air 


but grave steps, as better became their years and 
their characters in the hamlet. In a few minutes 
they were all collected around the person of the 
keeper, who having counted his charge, shouldered 
his horn, and disposed himself to proceed towards 
the lower extremity of the gorge. 

" Thou art lucky to have gotten the beasts to 
gether, with so little trouble, Gottlob," resumed the 
forester, as they followed in the train of the herd. 

" Say dexterous, Master Berchthold, and do not 
fear to make me vain-glorious. In the way of un 
derstanding my own merits there is little danger of 
doing me harm. Thou shouldest never discourage 
modesty, by an over-scrupulous discretion. It would 
be a village miracle, were a herd so nurtured m the 
ways of the church to forget its duty !" 

The forester laughed, but he looked aside, like 
one who would not see that to which he wished to 
be blind. 

" At thy old tricks, friend Gottlob ! Thou hast 
let the beasts roam upon the range of the friars !" 

" I have paid Peter s pence, been to the chapel of 
St. Benedict for prayer, confessed to Father Arnolph 
himself, and all within the month : what more need 
a man do, to be in favor with the Brothers ?" 

" I could wish to know if thou ever entertainest 
Father Arnolph with the history of thy visits to the 
pastures of the convent, with Lord Emich s herd, 
honest Gottlob." 

" So ! Dost thou fancy, Master Berchthold, that, 
at a moment when there is every necessity to pos 
sess a calm and contemplative spirit, I should strive 
to put the pious monk in a passion, by relating all 
the antics of some ill-bred cow, or of a heifer, who 
is as little to be trusted without a keeper, as your 
jung-frau before she reaches the years of caution is 
to be trusted at a fair without her mother, or a 
sharp-sighted old aunt, at the very least !" 


"Well, have a care, Gottlob, for Lord Emich 
though loving the friars so little, will be apt to order 
thee into a dungeon, on bread and water for a 
week, or to make thy back acquainted with the lash, 
should he come to hear that one of his hinds has 
taken this liberty with the rights of a neighbor." 

" Let Lord Emich then expel the brotherhood 
from the richest pasturage near the Jaegerthal. 
Flesh and blood cannot bear to see the beasts of a 
noble digging into the earth with their teeth, after 
a few bitter herbs, while the carrion of a convent 
are rolling the finest and sweetest grasses over their 
tongues. Look you, Master Berchthold, these friars 
of Limburg eat the fattest venison, drink the warm 
est wine, and say the shortest prayers of any monks 
in Christendom ! Potz-Tausend ! There are some 
who accuse them, too, of shriving the prettiest 
girls ! As for bread and water, and a dungeon, I 
know from experience that neither of the remedies 
agrees with a melancholy constitution, and I defy 
the Emperor, or even the Holy Father himself, to 
work such a miracle, as to make back of mine 
acquainted with the lash." 

" Simply because the introduction hath long since 
had place." 

" That is thy interpretation of the matter, Master 
Berchthold, and I wish thee joy of a quick wit. 
But we are getting beyond the limits of the forest, 
and we will dismiss the question to another conver 
sation. The beasts are full, and will not disappoint 
the dairy girls, and little matters it whence the 
nourishment comes Lord Emich s pastures or a 
churchly miracle. Thou hast hunted * the dogs 
.ightly to-day, Berchthold ?" 

" I have had them on the mountains for air and 
movement. They got away on the heels of a roe 
buck, for a short run, but as all the game in this 


chase belongs to our master, I did not see fit to }& 
them go faster than there was need." 

" I rejoice to hear thee say it, for I count upon 
thy company in climbing the mountain when our 
work is ended ; thy legs will only be the fresher for 
the toil." 

" Thou hast my word, and I will not fail thee ; in 
order that no time be lost, we will part here to meet 
again in the hamlet" 

The forester and the cow-herd made signs of 
leave-taking, and separated. The former quitted 
the public road, turning short to the right by a pri 
vate way, which led him across narrow meadows, 
and the little river that glided among them, towards 
the foot of the opposite mountain. Gottlob held on 
his course to a hamlet that was now visible, and 
which completely filled a narrow pass in the valley, 
at a point where the latter made a turn, nearly at a 
right angle with its general direction. 

The path of the former led him to an habitation 
very different from the rude dwellings towards 
which the steps of the cow-herd tended. A massive 
castle occupied a projecting point of the mountain, 
overhanging the cluster of houses in the gorge, and 
frowning upon all that attempted the pass. The 
structure was a vast but irregular pile. The more 
modern parts were circular salient towers, that were 
built upon the uttermost verge of the rock, from 
whose battlements it would not have been difficult 
to cast a stone into the road, and which denoted 
great attention to strength in their masonry, while 
beauty of form and of workmanship, as they were 
understood at the period of which we write, were 
not entirely neglected. These towers, though large, 
were mere appendages to the main building, which, 
seen from the position now before the mind of the 
reader, presented a confused maze of walls, chim 
neys, and roofs. In some places, the former rose 


from the greensward which covered the hill-side ; 
while in others, advantage had been taken of the 
living rock, which was frequently so blended with 
the pile it supported, both being of the same reddish 
free-stone, that it was not easy at the first glance to 
say, what had been done by nature and what by art. 

The path of the forester led from the valley up 
the mountain, by a gradual and lateral ascent to a 
huge gate, that opened beneath a high arch, com 
municating with a court within. On this side of the 
castle there was neither ditch, nor bridge, nor any 
other of the usual defences, beyond a portcullis, for 
the position of the hold rendered these precautions 
in a measure unnecessary. Still great care had 
been taken to prevent a surprise, and it would have 
required a sure foot, a steady head, and vigorous 
limbs, to have effected an entrance into the edifice, 
)y any other passage than its gate. 

When Berchthold reached the little terrace that 
ay before the portal, he loosened his horn, and, 
standing on the verge of the precipice, blew a hunt 
ing strain, apparently in glee. The music echoed 
among the hills as suited the spot, and more than 
one crone of the hamlet suspended her toil, in dull 
admiration, to listen to its wild effect. Replacing 
the instrument, the youth spoke to his hounds and 
passed beneath the portcullis, which happened to be 
raised at the moment 



4 What sayest thou to a hare, or the melancholy of moor-ditch ?" 

King Henry IV. 

THE light had nearly disappeared from the gorge, 
in which the hamlet of Hartenburg lay, when 
Berchthold descended from the castle, by a path 
different from that by which he had entered it an 
hour before, and crossing the rivulet by a bridge of 
stone, he ascended the opposite bank into the street, 
or rather the road. The young forester having 
kennelled the hounds, had laid aside his leash and 
fusee, but he still kept the horn suspended from his 
shoulder. At his side, too, he carried a couteau-de- 
chasse, a useful instrument of defence in that age 
and country, as well as a weapon he was entitled 
to carry, in virtue of his office under the Count of 
Lienengen-Hartenburg, the master of the hold he 
had just quitted, and the feudal lord of most of the 
adjoining mountains, as well as of sundry villages 
on the plain of the Palatinate. It would seem that 
the cow-herd expected his associate, or perhaps we 
might venture to call him friend, for such in truth 
did he appear to be, by the easy terms on which 
they met. Gottlob was in waiting near the cottage 
of his mother, and when the two joined each other 
they communicated by a sign, and proceeded with 
swift steps, leaving the cluster of houses. 

Immediately on quitting the hamlet, the valley 
expanded, and took that character of fertility and 
cultivation, which has been described to the reader 
in the Introduction ; for all who have perused that 
opening and necessary preface to our labors, will at 
once recognize that the two youths introduced to 
their acquaintance, were now in the mountain basin 


which contained the Abbey of Limburg. But three 
centuries, while they have effected little in altering 
the permanent features of the place, have wrought 
essential changes in those which were more perish 

As the young men moved swiftly on, the first rays 
of the moon touched the tops of the mountains, and 
ere they had gone a mile, always holding the direc 
tion of the pass which communicated with the val 
ley of the Rhine, the tow r ers and roofs of the Abbey 
itself were illuminated. The conventual buildings 
were then perfect, resembling, by their number and 
confusion, the grouping of some village, while a 
strong and massive wall encircled the entire brow 
of the isolated hill. The construction resembled 
one of those warlike ecclesiastical princes of the 
middle ages, who wore armor beneath the stole ; for 
while the towers and painted windows, the pious 
memorials and votive monuments, denoted the ob 
jects of the establishment, the defences betrayed 
that as much dependence was placed on human as 
on other means, for the protection of those who 
composed the brotherhood. 

" There is a moon for a monk as well as for a 
cow-herd, it would seem," observed Gottlob, speak 
ing however in a voice subdued nearly to a whis 
per. " There comes the light upon the high tower 
of the Abbey, and presently it will be glistening on 
the bald head of every straggler of the convent, 
who is abroad tasting the last vintage, or otherwise 
prying into the affairs of some burgher of Deurck- 
heim !" 

" Thou hast not much reverence for the pious 
fathers, honest Gottlob ; for it is seldom thou lettest 
opportunity pass to do them an ill turn, with tongue 
or hungry beast." 

"Look you, Berchthold, we vassals are little 
more than so much clear water in which our master 


may see his own countenance, and at need his own 
humors. Whenever Lord Emich has a sincere ha 
tred for man or horse, dog or cat, town or village, 
monk or count, I know not why it is so, but I feel 
my own choler rise, until I am both ready and will 
ing to strike when he striketh, to curse when he 
curseth, and even to kill when he killeth." 

" Tis a good temper for a servitor, but it is to be 
hoped, for the sake of Christian credit, that the sym 
pathy does not end here, but that thy affections are 
as social as thy dislikes." 

" More so, as there is faith in man ! Count Emich 
is a huge lover of a venison pasty of a morning, 
and I feel a yearning for it the day long Count 
Emich will dispatch you a bottle of Deurckheim in 
an hour, whereas two would scarce show my zeal 
for his honor in the same time ; and as for other 
mortifications of this nature, I am not the man to 
desert my master for want of zeal." 

" I believe thee, Gottlob," said Berchthold laugh 
ing, " and even more than thou canst find words to 
say in thine own favor, on topics like these. But, 
after all, the Benedictines are churchmen, and sworn, 
to their faith and duty, as well as any bishop in Ger 
many ; and I do not see the cause of all the dislike 
of either lord or vassal." 

" Ay, thou art in favor with some of the fraternity, 
and it is rare that the week passes in which thou art 
not kneeling before some of their altars ; but with 
rne the case is different, for since the penance com 
manded for that affair of dealing a little freely with 
one of their herds, I have srrrall digestion for their 
spiritual food." 

" And yet thou hast paid Peter s pence, said thy 
prayers, and confessed thy sins to Father Arnolph, 
and all within the month !" 

" What wouldst thou have of a sinner ? I gave the 
money on the promise of having it back with usury 


I prayed on account of an accursed tooth that tor 
ments me, at times, in a manner worse than a 
damned soul is harrowed ; and as to confession, ever 
since my uncommon candor, concerning the herd, 
got me into that penance, I confess under favor of a 
proper discretion. To tell the truth, Master Berch- 
thold, the church is something like a two-year old 
wife ; pleasant enough when allowed her own way, 
but a devil of a vixen when folded against her will." 

The young forester was thoughtful and silent, and 
as they were now in the vicinity of the hamlet which 
belonged to the friars of Limburg, his loquacious 
and prurient companion saw fit to imitate his reserve, 
from a motive of prudence. The little artificial 
lake mentioned in the Introduction was in existence, 
at the time of our tale ; but the inn, with the ambi 
tions sign of the anchor, is the fruit of far more 
modern enterprise. When the young men reached 
a ravine, that opened into the mountain near the 
present site of this tavern, they turned aside from 
the high road, first taking care to observe that no 
curious eye watched their movements. 

Here commenced a long and somewhat painful 
ascent, by means of a rough path, that was only 
lighted in spots by the rising moon. The vigorous 
imbs of the forester and the cow-herd, however, 
soon carried them to the summit of the most ad 
vanced spur of the adjoining mountain, where they 
arrived upon an open heath-like plain. Although 
the discourse between them had been maintained 
during the ascent, it was in more subdued tones even 
than when beneath the walls of Limburg, the spirits 
of Gottlob appearing to ooze away the higher he 

" This is a dreary and a courage-killing waste, 
Berchthold," whispered the cow-herd, as his foot 
touched the level ground ; " and it is even more dis 
heartening to enter on it by the aid of the moon, 


than in the dark. Hast ever been nearer to the 
Teufelstein, at this hour ? 

" I came upon it once at midnight ; for it was 
there I made acquaintance with him that we are now 
about to visit Did I never relate the manner of 
that meeting?" 

" What a habit hast thou of taxing a memory 1 
Perhaps if thou wert to repeat it, I might recall the 
facts by the time thou wert ended ; and to speak 
truth, thy voice is comfortable on this sprite s com 

The young forester smiled, but without derision, 
for he saw that his companion, spite of his indiffer 
ence to all grave subjects, was, as is generally the 
case, the most afiected of the two when put to a 
serious trial, and perhaps he also remembered the 
difference that education had made in their powers 
of thinking. That he did not treat the subject ag 
one of light import himself, was also apparent by the 
regulated and cautious manner in which he deliver 
ed the following account. 

" I had been on the chases of Lord Emich since 
the rising of the sun," commenced Berchthold, " for 
there was need of more than common vigilance to 
watch the neighboring boors. The search had led 
me far into the hills, and the night came, not as it is 
now seen, but so pitchy dark, that, accustomed as I 
was from childhood to the forest, it was not possible 
to tell the direction of even a star, much less that 
of the Castle. For hours I wandered, hoping at 
each moment to reach the opening of the valley, 
when I found myself of a sudden in a field that ap 
peared endless and uninhabited." 

"Ay That was this devil s ball-room! thou 
meanest untenanted by man." 

" Hast thou ever known the helplessness of being 
ost in the forest, Gottlob ?" 

" In my own person, never, Master Berchthold ; 


but in that of my herd, it is a misfortune that often 
oefalls me, sinner that I am !" 

" I know not that sympathy with thy cows can 
tcctch thee the humiliation and depression that come 
over the mind, when we stand on this goodly earth, 
cut off from all communication with our fellows, in 
a desert, though surrounded by living men, deprived 
of the senses of sight and hearing for useful ends, 
and with all the signs of God before the eyes, and yet 
with none of the common means of enjoying his 
bounty, from having lost the clue to his intentions." 

" Must tha teeth, of necessity, be idle, or the throat 
dry, Master Forester, because the path is hid ?" 

" At such a moment the appetites are quieted, in 
the grand desire to return to our usual communica 
tion with the earth. It is like being restored to the 
helplessness of infancy, with all the wants and habits 
of manhood besetting the character and wishes." 

" If thou callest such a condition a restoration, 
friend Berchthold, I shall make interest with St. 
Benedict that I may remain deposed to the end of 
my days." 

" I weigh not the meaning of every word I utter, 
with the recollection of that helpless moment so 
fresh. But it was when the desolate feeling was 
strongest, that I roved out of the chase upon this 
mountain heath; there appeared something before 
my sight, that seemed a house, and by a bright light 
that glittered, as I fancied, at a window, I felt again 
restored to intercourse with my kind." 

" Thou usest thy terms with more discretion now," 
said the cow-herd, fetching a heavy breath, like one 
who was glad the difficulty had found a termination. 
" I hope it was the abode of some substantial tenan* 
of Lord Emich, who was not without the means of 
comforting a soul in distress." 

"Gottlob, the dwelling was no other than the 


Teufelstein, and the light was a twinkling star, tha* 
chance had brought in a line with the rock." 

" I take it for granted, Master Berchthold, thou 
didst not knock twice for admission at that door !" 

" I am not much governed by the vulgar legends 
and womanish superstitions of our hills, but " 

" Softly softly friend forester ; what thou call- 
est by names so irreverent, are the opinions of all 
who dwell in or about Deurckheim ; knight or monk 
burgher or count, has equally a respect for our 
venerable traditions. Tausand Sechs und Zwan- 
ziges ! what would become of us, if we had not a 
gory tale, or some alarming and reverend spectacle 
of this sort, to set up against the penances, and 
prayers, and masses of the Friars of Limburg ! As 
much wisdom and philosophy as thou wilt, foster- 
brother of mine, but leave us our Devil, if it be 
only to make battle against the Abbot !" 

" Notwithstanding thy big words, I well know that 
none among us has, at heart, a greater dread of this 
very hill than thyself, Gottlob ! I have seen thee 
sweat cold drops from thy forehead, in crossing the 
heath after night-fall." 

" Art quite sure twas not the dew ? We have 
heavy fails of that moisture in these hills, when the 
earth is parched !" 

" Let it then be the dew." 

"To oblige thee, Berchthold, I would willingly 
swear it was a water-spout. But what didst thou 
make of the rock and the star ?" 

" I could change the nature of neither. I pretend 
not to thy indifference to the mysterious power that 
rules the earth, but thou well knowest that fear 
never yet kept me from this hill. When a near ap 
proach showed me my error, I was about to turn 
away, not without crossing myself and repeating 
an Ave, as I am ready to acknowledge; but a 


gfance upward convinced me that the stone was oc 
cupied " 

" Occupied 1 I have always known that it was 
possessed, but never before did I think it was occu 
pied 1" 

" There was one seated on its uppermost projec 
tion, as plainly to be seen as the rock itself." 

"Whereupon thou madest manifest that good 
speed which has gained thee the favor of the Count, 
arid thy post of forester." 

" I hope the nerve to put the duties of my office 
in practice, had their weight with Lord Emich," re 
joined Berchthold, a little quickly. " I did not run, 
Gottlob, but I spoke to the being who had chosen a 
seat so remarkable, and at that late hour." 

Spite of his spirits and affected humor, the cow 
herd unconsciously drew nearer to his companion, 
casting at the same time an oblique glance in the di 
rection of the suspected rock. 

" Thou seemest troubled, Gottlob." 

" Dost thou think I am without bowels ? What, 
shall a friend of mine be in this strait, and I not 
troubled I Heaven save thee, Berchthold, were the 
best cow in my herd off her stomach, I could not 
be in greater concern. Hadst any answer 1" 

" I had and the result has gone to show me," 
returned the forester, musing as he spoke, like one 
who was obtaining glimpses of long-concealed truth, 
" that our fears oftentimes prevent us from seeing 
things as they are, and are the means of nourishing 
our mistakes. I got an answer, and certainly, con 
trary to what most in Deurckheim would have be 
lieved, it was given in a human voice." 

" That was encouraging, though it were hoarser 
than the roaring of a bull !" 

" It spoke mildly and in reason, Gottlob, as thou 
wilt readily believe, when I tell thee it was no 
other than the voice of the Anchorite of the Cedars. 


Our acquaintance then and there commenced, since 
which time, as thou knowest well, it hath not flagged 
for want of frequent visits to his abode, on my part." 

The cow-herd walked on in silence, for more than 
a minute, and then stopping short, he abruptly ad 
dressed his companion : 

" And this then hath been thy secret, Berchthold 
concerning the manner of commencing on thy new 

" There is no other. I well knew how much thou 
wert fettered by the opinions of the country, and 
was afraid of losing thy company in these visits, 
were I, without caution, to tell all the circumstances 
of our interview. But now thou hast become known 
to the anchorite, I do not fear thy desertion." 

* Never count upon too many sacrifices from thy 
friends, Master Berchthold ! The mind of man is 
borne upon by so many fancies, is ruled by so many 
vagaries, and tormented by so many doubts, when 
there is question concerning the safety of the body, 
to say nothing of the soul, that I know no more rash 
confidence, than to count too securely on the sacri 
fices of a friend." 

" Thou knowest the path, and can return by thy 
self, to the hamlet, if thou wilt," said the forester 
peevishly, and not without severity. 

" There are situations in which it is as difficult to 
go back as to go forward," observed Gottlob ; " else, 
Berchthold, I might take thee at thy word, and go 
back to my careful mother, a good supper, and a 
bed that stands between a picture of the Virgin, one 
of St. Benedict, and one of my Lord the Count. 
But for my concern for thee, I would not go another 
foot towards the camp." 

" Do as thou wilt," said the forester, who appear 
ed, however, to know the apprehension his compan 
ion felt of being left alone in that solitary and sus 
pected spot, and who turned his advantage to good 


account, by quickening his pace in such a manner as 
would soon have left Gottlob to his own thick-com 
ing fancies, had he not diligently imitated his gait. 
Thou canst tell the people of Lord Emich, that 
thou abandoned me on this hill." 

" Nay," returned Gottlob, making a merit of ne 
cessity, " if I do that, or say that, may they make a 
Benedictine of me, and the Abbot of Limburg to 
boot !" 

As the cow-herd, who felt all his master s antipa 
thies against their religious neighbors, expressed 
this determination in a voice strong as his resolution, 
confidence was restored between the friends, who 
continued their progress with swift paces. The 
place was, sooth to say, one every way likely to 
quicken any dormant seeds of superstition that edu 
cation, or tradition, or local opinions had implanted 
in the human breast. 

By this time our adventurers had approached a 
wood of low cedars, which, apparently encircled in 
a round wall that was composed of a confused but 
vast pile of fallen stones, grew upon the advanced 
spur of the hills. Behind them lay the heath-like 
plain, while the bald rock which the moon-beams 
had just lighted, raising its head from out of the 
earth, resembled some gloomy monument placed in 
the centre of the waste, to mark and to render ob 
vious, by comparison, the dreary solitude of the 
naked fields. The back-ground was the dark slopes 
and ridges of the forest of the Haart mountains. 
On their right was the glen, or valley, from which 
they had just ascended; and on their front, looking 
a little obliquely from the grove, the plain of the 
Palatinate, which lay in misty obscurity, like a dim 
sea of cultivation, hundreds of feet beneath their 
elevated stand. 

It was rare, indeed, that any immediate dependant 
of the Count Emich, and more especially any of 


those who dwelt in or about his castle, and who 
were likely to be called into his service at an unex 
pected moment, ventured so far from the fortress, 
and in the direction of the hostile Abbey, without 
providing himself with the means of offence and de 
fence. Berchthold wore, as wont, his hunting-knife, 
or the short straight sword, which to this day is 
carried by that description of European dependant 
called a chasseur, and who is seen, degraded to the 
menial offices of a footman, standing behind the 
carriages of ambassadors and princes, reminding 
the observant spectator of the regular and certain 
decadency of the usages of feudal times. Neither 
had Gottlob been neglectful of his personal security, 
as respects human foes ; for on the subject of resist 
ing all such attacks, his manhood was above re 
proach, as had been proved in more than one of 
those bloody frays, which in that age were of fre 
quent occurrence between the vassals of the minor 
German princes. *The cow-herd had provided him 
self with a heavy weapon that his father had often 
wielded in battle, and which needed all the vigor of 
the muscular arm of the son, to flourish with a due 
observance of the required positions and attitudes. 
Fire-arms were of too much value and of too im 
perfect use to be resorted to on every light occasion, 
tike that which had now drawn the foster-brothers, 
for such supported by long habit was the secret of 
the intimacy between the forester and the cow-herd, 
from their hamlet to the hill of Deurckheim. 

Berchthold loosened his couteau-de-chasse, as he 
turned by an ancient gate-way, whose position was 
known merely by an interruption of the ditch that 
had protected this face of the wall, and an opening 
in the wall itself, to enter the inclosure, which the 
reader will at once recognize as the Pagan s Camp 
of the Introduction. At the same moment Gottlob 
cast his heavy weapon from his shoulder, and 


grasped its handle in a more scientific manner. 
There was certainly no enemy visible to justify 
these movements, but the increasing solitude of the 
place, and that impression of danger which besets 
the faculties, when we find ourselves in situations 
favorable to deeds of violence, probably induced the 
double and common caution. The light of the 
moon, which was not yet full, had not sufficient 
power to penetrate the thick branches of the cedars ; 
and when the youths were fairly beneath the gloomy 
foliage, although not left in the ordinary darkness 
of a clouded night, they were perhaps in that very 
species of dull and misty illumination, which, by 
leaving objects uncertain while visible, is the best 
adapted to undermine the confidence of a distrustful 
spirit. There was little wind, but the sighs of the 
night air were plaintively audible, while the adven 
turers picked their way among the fragments of the 

It has been elsewhere said, that the Heidenmauer 
was originally a Roman camp. The warlike and 
extraordinary people who had erected these ad 
vanced works on the remotest frontier of their wide 
empire, had, of course, neglected none of the means 
that were necessary, under the circumstances, 
either for their security or for their comfort. The 
first had been sufficiently obtained by the nearly 
isolated position of the hill, protected, as it was, by 
walls so massive and so high as those must have 
been, which had consumed the quantity of materials 
still visible in the large circuit that remained ; while 
the interior furnished abundant proofs that the latter 
had not been neglected, in its intersecting remains, 
over which Gottlob more than once stumbled, as 
he advanced into the shadows of the place. Here 
and there, a ruined habitation, more or less dilapi 
dated, was still standing, furnishing, like the memo 
rable remains of Pompeii and Herculaneum, inter- 


esting and infallible evidence of the usages of those 
who have so long since departed to their eternal 
rest. It would seem, by the rude repairs which 
rather injured than embellished these touching, 
though simple monuments of what the interior of the 
camp had been in its day of power and pride, that 
modern adventurers had endeavored to turn them 
to account, by converting the falling huts into hab 
itations appropriated to their own temporary uses. 
All, however, appeared to have been long before 
finally abandoned ; for as Berchthold and his com 
panion stole cautiously among the crumbling stones, 
the gaping rents and roofless walls denoted hopeless 
decay. At length the youths paused, and fastened 
their looks in a common direction, as if apprized 
that they were near the goal of their expedition. 

In a part of the grove, where the cedars grew 
more dense and luxuriant than on most of that 
stony and broken soil, stood a single low building, 
which, of all there, had the air of being still habita 
ble. Like the others, it either had been originally 
constructed by the masters of the world, or restored 
on the foundations of some Roman construction by 
the followers of Attila, who, it will be remembered, 
had passed a winter in this camp ; and it was now 
rendered weather-proof by the usual devices of the 
poor and laborious. There was a single window, a 
door, and a rude chimney, which the climate and 
the elevated situation of the place rendered nearly 
indispensable. The light of a dim torch shone 
through the former, the only sign that the hut was 
tenanted ; for on the exterior, with the exception of 
the rough repairs just mentioned, all around it lay 
in the neglected and eloquent stillness of ruin. The 
reader will not imagine, in this description, any of 
that massive grandeur which so insensibly attaches 
itself to most that is connected with the Roman 
name ; for while, in the nature of things, the most 


ponderous and the most imposing of the public 
works of that people are precisely those which are 
the most likely to have descended to our own times, 
the traveller often meets with memorials of their 
power, that are so frail and perishable in their con 
struction, as to owe their preservation, in a great 
measure, to an accidental combination of circum 
stances favorable to such a result. Still, the Roman 
was ordinarily as much greater in little things, if 
connected with a public object, as he excelled all 
who have succeeded him, in those which were of 
more importance. The Ringmauer, or Heiden- 
mauer, is a strong proof of what we say. There is 
not an arch, nor a tomb, nor a gate, nor a paved 
road of any description in the vicinity of Deurck- 
heim, to show that the post was more than a tem 
porary military position ; and yet the presence of its 
former occupants is established by more evidence 
than would probably be found, a century hence 
were half of the present cities of Christendom to be 
suddenly abandoned. But these evidences are rude 
and suited to the objects which had brought them 
into existence. 

The forester and the cow-herd stood long regard 
ing the solitary hut, which had arrested their looks 
like men hesitating to proceed. 

" I had more humor for the company of the hon 
est anchorite, Master Berchthold," said the latter 
" before thou madest me acquainted with his fond- 
ness for taking the night air on the Teufelstein." 

" Thou hast not fear, Gottlob ? Thou, who bear 
est so good a name for courage among our youths ! 

" I shall be the last to accuse myself of cowardice 
or of any other discreditable quality, friend forester ., 
but prudence is a virtue in a youth, as the Abbot of 
Limburg himself would swear, were he here f> 

" He is not present in his own reverend and re 
spected person," said a voice so nigh the ear ot 


Gottlob, as to cause him to jump nimbly aside ; " but 
one who may humbly represent some portion of his 
sanctity, is not wanting to affirm the truth of what 
thou sayest, son." 

The startled young men saw that a monk of the 
opposite mountain had unexpectedly appeared be 
tween them. They were on the lands of the Abbey, 
or rather on ground in dispute between the burghers 
of Deurckheim and the convent, but actually in pos 
session of the latter ; and they felt the insecurity of 
their situation as the dependants of the count of 
Hartenburg. Neither spoke, therefore, for each 
was striving to invent some plausible pretext for his 
appearance in a place so unfrequented, and which, 
in general, was held in so little favor by the neigh 
boring peasantry. 

"You are youths of Deurckheim?" asked the 
monk, endeavoring to observe their features by the 
imperfect light that penetrated the foliage of the 
dark cedars. Gottlob, whose besetting infirmity was 
a too exuberant fluency of tongue, took on himself 
the task of answering. 

" We are youths, reverend father," he said, " as 
thy quick and sagacious sight hath so well seen. I 
will not deny my years, and if I would, the devil, 
who besets all between fifteen and five-and- twenty 
in the shape of some giddy infirmity, would soon 
betray the imposture." 

" Of Deurckheim, son ?" 

"As there is question between the Abbey and the 
town concerning these hills, we might not stand any 
better in thy favor, holy Benedictine, were we to 
say yes." 

" In that suspicion, thou dost little justice to the 
Abbey, son: we may defend the rights of the 
Church, confided in their temporalities as they are 
to an unworthy and sinful brotherhood, without feel 
ing any uncharitableness against those who believe 


they have claims better than our own. The love 
of mammon is feeble in bosoms that are devoted to 
self-denying and repentant lives. Say then boldly 
that you are a Deurckheim, and dread not my dis 

" Since it is thy good pleasure, benevolent monk, 
I will say boldly that we are of Deurckheim." 

" And you come to consult the holy Anchorite of 
the Cedars?" 

" It is not necessary that I should tell one of thy 
knowledge of human nature, reverend Benedictine, 
that the failing of all dwellers in small towns, is an 
itching to look into the affairs of their neighbors. 
Himmel ! If our worthy burgomasters would spare 
a little time from the affairs of other people to look 
into their own, we should all be greatly gainers ; 
they in their property, and we in our comfort !" 

The Benedictine laughed, and he motioned for the 
youths to follow, advancing himself towards the hut. 

" Since you have given yourselves this trouble, no 
doubt with a praiseworthy and pious intention, my 
sons," he said, "let not respect for my presence 
change your purpose. We will go into the cell of 
the holy hermit, in company ; and if there should be 
advantage from his blessing, or discourse, believe 
me I will not be so unjust as to envy either of you a 

"The manner in which the friars of Limburg 
deny themselves advantages, in order to do profit to 
their fellow-christians, is in the mouths of all, far and 
near ; and this generosity of thine, reverend monk, 
is quite of a piece with the well-earned reputation 
of the whole brotherhood." 

As Gottlob spoke gravely, and bowed with suffi 
cient reverence, the Benedictine was in a slight de 
gree his dupe ; though, as he passed beneath the low 
portal of the hut, he could not prevent a lurking sus 
picion of the truth. 




14 He comes at last in sullen loneliness, 
And whence they know not, why they need not guess." 


IN those ages in which moral wrongs were chiefly 
repaired by superstition, and the slaves of the grosser 
passions believed they were only to be rebuked by 
signal acts of physical self-denial, the world often 
witnessed examples of men retiring from its allure 
ments, to caves and huts, for the ostensible pur 
poses of penitence and prayer. That this extraor 
dinary pretension to godliness was frequently the 
cloak of ambition and deceit is certain, but it would 
be uncharitable to believe that, in common, it did not 
proceed from an honest, though it might be an ill- 
directed, zeal. Hermitages are still far from infre 
quent in the more southern parts of Europe, though 
they are of rare occurrence in Germany ; but pre 
viously to the change of religion which occurred in 
the sixteenth century, and consequently near the 
period of this tale, they were perhaps more often 
met with among the descendants of the northern 
race, than among the more fervid fancies of the 
southern stock of that quarter of the world. It is 
a law of nature that the substances which most 
easily receive impressions, are the least likely to re 
tain them ; and possibly there may be requisite a 
constancy and severity of character to endure the 
never-ending and mortifying exactions of the an 
chorite, that were not so easily found among the 
volatile and happy children of the sun, as among 
the sterner offspring of the regions of cold and 

Whatever may be said of the principles of him 
who thus abandoned worldly ease for the love of 


God, it it quite sure, that in practice, there were 
present and soothing rewards in this manner of life, 
that were not without strong attractions to morbid 
minds ; especially to those in which the seeds of 
ambition were dormant rather than extinct. It was 
rare, indeed, that a recluse established himself in the 
vicinity of a simple and religious neighborhood, and 
few were they who sought absolute solitude without 
reaping a rich harvest of veneration and moral de 
pendence among the untrained minds of his admirers. 
In this treacherous manner does vanity beset us in 
our strong-holds of mental security, and he who 
has abandoned the world, in the hope of leaving 
behind him those impulses which endangered his 
hopes, finds the enemy in a new shape, intrenched 
in the very citadel of his defences. There is little 
merit, and commonly as little safety, in turning the 
back on any danger, and he has far less claims to 
the honors of a hero who outlives the contest in 
consequence of means so questionable, than he who 
survives because he has given a mortal blow to his 
antagonist. The task assigned to man is to move 
among his fellows doing good, filling his part in the 
scale of creation, and escaping from none of the 
high duties which God has allotted to his being ; and 
greatly should he be grateful, that, while his service 
is arduous, he is not left without the powerful aid of 
that intelligence which controls the harmony of the 

The Anchorite of the Cedars, as the recluse now 
visited by the monk and his accidental companions 
was usually termed by the peasants, and by the 
burghers of Deurckheim, had made his appearance 
about six months before the opening of our story, in 
the Ringmauer. Whence he had come, how long 
he intended to remain, and what had been his pre 
vious career, were facts equally unknown to those 
among whom he so suddenly took up his abode. 


None had seen him arrive, nor could any say from 
what sources he drew the few articles of household 
furniture which were placed in his hut. They who 
left the camp untenanted one week, on returning the 
next, had found it occupied by a man, who had ar 
ranged one of the deserted buildings in a manner to 
shelter him from the storms, and who, by erecting 
a crucifix at his door, had sufficiently announced 
the motive of his retirement. It was usual to hail 
the establishment of a hermit in any particular dis 
trict, as a propitious event ; and many were the 
hopes excited, and plans of effecting temporal ob 
jects concocted, by the intervention of the prayers 
of the stranger, before his presence had been known 
a fortnight. All within the influence of the name of 
the hermit, except Emich of Leinengen-Hartenburg, 
the burgomasters of Deurckheim, and the monks 
of Limburg, heard of his arrival with satisfaction. 
The haughty and warlike baron had imbibed a 
standing prejudice against all devotees, from an in 
herited enmity to the adjoining convent, which had 
contested the sovereignty of the valley with his 
family for ages ; while the magistrates had a latent 
jealousy of every influence which custom and the 
laws had not rendered familiar. As to the monks, 
the secret of their distrust was to be found in that 
principle of human nature, which causes us to dis 
like being outdone in any merit of which we make 
an especial profession, even though superior godli 
ness be its object. Until now the Abbot of Limburg 
was held to be the judge, in the last resort, of all in 
tercessions between earth and heaven ; and as his 
supremacy had the support of time, he had long en 
joyed it in that careless security which lures so 
many of the prosperous to their downfall. 

These antipathies on the part of the honored and 
powerful might, to say the least, have rendered the 
life of the anchorite very uncomfortable, if not posi 


lively insecure, were it not for the neutralizing effect 
of the antagonist forces which were set in motion. 
Opinion, deepened by superstition, held its shield 
over the humble hut, and month after month glided 
away, after the arrival of the stranger, during which 
he received no other testimonials of the feelings ex 
cited by his presence, than those connected with the 
reverence of the bulk of the population. An acci 
dental communication with Berchthold was ripen 
ing into intimacy, and, as will be seen in the course 
of the narrative, there were others to whom his 
counsel, or his motives, or his prayers, were no., 

The latter fact was made sufficiently apparent to 
those who on account of their mutual distrust, now 
presented themselves with less ceremony than usual, 
at the threshold of the hut. The light within came 
from a fagot which was burning on the rude hearth, 
but it was quite strong enough to show the monk 
and his companions that the anchorite was not alone. 
Their footsteps had evidently been heard, and a 
female had time to arise from her knees, and to ar 
range her mantle in such a manner as effectually to 
conceal her countenance. The hurried action was 
scarcely completed, when the Benedictine darkened 
the door with his gloomy robes, while Berchthold 
and his friend stood gazing over his shoulders, with 
lively curiosity mingled with surprise. 

The form and countenance of the anchorite were 
those of middle age. His eye had lost nothing of 
its quickness or intelligence, though his movements 
had the deliberation and care that long experience 
insensibly interweaves in the habits of those who 
have not lived in vain. He expressed neither con 
cern nor wonder at the unexpected visits, but le- 
garding his guests earnestly, like one who assured 
himself of their identity, he mildly motioned for all 
to enter. There was jealous suspicion in the glance 


of the Benedictine, as he compnea : ior until now, 
he had no reason to believe that the recluse was 
usurping so intimate and so extensive an influence 
over the minds of the young, as the presence of the 
unknown female would give reason to believe. 

" I knew that thou wert of holy life and constant 
prayer, venerable hermit," he said, in a tone that 
questioned in more than one meaning of the term, 
" but until this moment, I had not thought thee vested 
with the Church s power to hearken to the trans 
gressions of the faithful and to forgive sins!" 

" The latter is an office, brother, that of right 
belongs only to God. The head of the Church him 
self is but an humble instrument of faith, in discharg 
ing this solemn trust." 

The countenance of the monk did not become 
more amicable at this reply, nor did he fail to cast 
a scrutinizing glance at the muffled form of the 
stranger, in a fruitless endeavor to recognize her 

" Thou hast not even the tonsure," he continued, 
while his uneasy eye rolled from that of the recluse 
to the form of the stranger, who had shrunk, as far as 
the narrow place would permit, from observation. 

" Thou seest, father, I have all the hair that time 
and infirmities have left me. But is it thought, in 
thy beneficed and warlike abbey, that the advice of 
one who has lived long enough to know and to lament 
his own errors, can injure the less experienced? If 
unhappily I may have deceived myself, thou art 
timely present, reverend monk, to repair the wrong." 

" et the maiden come to the confessional of the 
Abbey Church, if distrust or apprehension weigh 
upon her mind; doubt it not, she will find great 
comfort in the experiment." 

" As I will testify, from many trials " abruptly 
interposed the cow-herd, who advanced intrusively 
between the two devotees, in a manner to occupy 


all their attention. < Go upon the hill, and ease thy 
soul, Gottlob, is my good and venerable mother in 
the practice of saying, whenever my opinion of my 
self is getting to be too humble, * and discourse with 
some of the godly fathers of the Abbey, whose wis 
dom and unction will not fail to lighten thy heart of 
even a heavier load, There is Father Ulnch, he is 
a paragon of virtue and self-denial ; and Father 
Cuno is even more edifying and salutary than he ; 
while Father Siegfried is more balmy to a soul, than 
the most reverend Abbot, the virtuous and pious 
Father Bonifacius himself! Whatever thou doest, 
child, go upon the hill, and enter boldly into the 
church, like a loaded and oppressed sinner as thou 
art, and especially seek counsel and prayer from the 
excellent and beloved father Siegfried. " 

" And thou who art thou 1" demanded the half- 
doubting monk, " that thus speakest of me, in terms 
that I so little merit, to my face T 

" I would I were Lord Emich of Hartenburg, or 
for that matter, the Elector Palatine himself, in 
order to do justice to those I honor ; in which case 
certain Fathers of Limburg should have especial 
favor, and that quickly too, after my own flesh and 
blood ! Who am I, father 1 I wonder that a face 
so often seen at the confessional should be forgotten. 
What there is of me to boast of, Father Siegfried, is 
of thine own forming but it is no cause of surprise 
that thou dost not recall me to mind, since the meek 
and towly of spirit are sure to forget their own 
good works !" 

, . " Thou callest thyself Gottlob but the name be 
longs to many Christians," 

" More bear it, reverend monk, than know now 
to do it honor. There is Gottlob Frincke, as arrant 
a knave as any in Deurckheim ; and Gottlob Popp 
night have more respect for his baptismal vow 
ind as to Lord Gottlob of Manheim ." 


" We will overlook the transgressions of the re 
mainder of thy namesakes, for the good that thou 
thyself hast done," interrupted the Benedictine, who, 
having insensibly yielded to the unction of flattery in 
the commencement of the interview, began now to 
be ashamed of the weakness, as the fluent cow-herd 
poured forth his words in a manner to excite some 
suspicion of the quality of praise that came from 
such a source. " Come to me when thou wilt, son, 
and such counsel as a weak head, but a sincere 
heart, can render, shall not be withheld." 

" How this would lighten the heart of my old 
mother to hear ! Gottlob, would she say " 

" What has become of thy companion, and of the 
maiden ?" hastily demanded the Benedictine. 

As the part of the cow-herd was successfully per 
formed, he stood aside, with an air of well-acted 
simplicity and amazement, leaving the discourse to 
be pursued between the recluse and the monk. 

" Thy guests have suddenly left us," continued 
the latter, after satisfying himself, by actual obser 
vation, that no one remained in the hut but himself, 
its regular occupant, and the honey-tongued Gott 
lob ; " and, as it would seem, in company !" 

" They are gone as they came, voluntarily and 
without question." 

" Thou knowest them, by frequent visits, holy 
hermit ?" 

" Father, I question none : were the Elector Fried- 
rich to come into my abode, he would be welcome, 
and this cow-herd is not less so. To both, at parting, 
1 merely say, God speed ye V " 

" Thou keepest the cattle of the burghers, Gottlob ?" 

" I keep a herd, reverend priest, such as my mas 
ters please to trust to my care." 

" We have grave cause of complaint against one 
of thy fellows who serves the Count of Hartenburg. 


and who is in the daily habit of trespassing on the 
pastures of the church, Dost know the hind V 9 

" Potz Tausend ! If all the knaves who do these 
wrongs, when out of sight of their masters, were 
set in a row before the eyes of the most reverend 
Abbot of Limburg, he would scarce know whether 
to begin with prayers or stripes, and they say he is a 
potent priest at need, with both ! I sometimes trem 
ble for my own conduct, though no one can have a 
better opinion of himself than I, poor and lowly as 
I stand in your reverend presence ; for a hard for 
tune, and some oversight in the management of my 
father s affairs, have brought me to the need of 
living among such associates. Were I not of ap 
proved honesty, there might be more beasts on the 
Abbey lands ; and they who now pass their time in 
fasting in sheer humility, might come to the prac- 
rice of sheer necessity." 

The Benedictine examined the meek countenance 
of Gottlob with a keen distrustful eye ; he next in 
vited the hermit to bestow his blessing, and then 
motioning for the hind to retire, he entered on the 
real object of his visit to the hermitage. 

We shall merely say, at this point of the nar 
rative, that the moment was extremely critical to 
all who dwelt in the Palatinate of the Rhine. The 
Elector had, perhaps imprudently for a prince of his 
limited resources, taken an active part in the vin 
dictive warfare then raging, and serious reverses 
threatened to endanger not only his tranquillity but 
his throne. It was a consequence of the feudal sys 
tem, which then so generally prevailed in Europe, 
that internal disorders succeeded any manifest 
though it might be only a temporary derangement 
of the power of the potentate that held the right of 
sovereignty over the infinite number of petty rulers 
who, at that period, weighed particularly heavy on 
Germany. To them he was the law, for they were 


not apt to acknowledge any supremacy that did not 
come supported by the strong hand. The ascend 
ing scale of rulers, including baron, count, land 
grave, margrave, duke, elector, and king, up to the 
nominal head of the state, the emperor himself, with 
the complicated and varied interests, embracing al- 
bgiance within allegiance, and duty upon duty, was 
likely in itself to lead to dissension, had the Imperial 
Crown been one of far more defined and positive 
influence than it was. But, uncertain and indirect, 
in the application of its means, it was rare that any 
very serious obstacle to tranquillity was removed, 
without the employment of positive force. No 
sooner was the Emperor involved in a serious strug 
gle, than the great princes endeavored to recover 
that balance which had been lost by the long 
ascendency of a particular family, while the minor 
princes seldom saw themselves surrounded with ex 
ternal embarrassment, that internal discord did not 
come to increase the evil. As a vassal was com 
monly but a rude reflection of his lord s enmities 
and prejudices, the reader will have inferred from 
the language of the cow-herd, that affairs were not 
on the most amicable footing between those near 
neighbors, the Abbot of Limburg and the Count of 
Hartenburg. The circumstance of their existing so 
near each other was, of itself, almost a certain 
cause of rivalry ; to which natural motive of con 
tention may be added the unremitted strife between 
the influence of superstition and the dread of the 

The visit of the monk had reference to certain 
interests connected with the actual state of things, 
as they existed between the Abbey and the Castle. 
As it would be premature, however, to expose his 
object, we shall be content with saying, that the 
conference between the priest and the hermit lasted 
for half an hour, when the former took his leave, 


craving a blessing from one of a life so pure and 
self-denying as his host. 

At the door of the hut, the monk found Gottlob 
who had early been gotten rid of, it will be remem 
bered, but who, for reasons of his own, had seen fit 
to await the termination of the conference. 

" Thou here, son !" exclaimed the Benedictine. 
* I had thought thee at peace, in thy bed, favored 
with the benediction of a hermit so holy !" 

" Good fortune is sure to drive sleep from my 
eyes, father," returned Gottlob, dropping in by the 
side of the monk who was walking through the 
cedars towards the ancient gateway of the camp. 
I am not of your animal kind, that is no sooner 
filled with a good thing than it lies down to rest ; 
but the happier I become, the more I desire to be 
up to enjoy it" 

" Thy wish is natural, and, although many natu 
ral desires are to be resisted, I do not see the dan 
ger of our knowing our own happiness." 

" Of the danger I will say nothing, father, but of 
the comfort, there is not a youth in Deurckheim, 
who can speak with greater certainty than myself." 

" Gottlob," said the Benedictine, insensibly edging 
nearer to his companion, like one willing to commu 
nicate confidentially, "since thou namest Deurck 
heim, canst say aught of the humor of its people, in 
this matter of contention between our holy Abbot 
and Lord Emich of Hartenburg ?" 

" Were I to tell thy reverence the truth that lies 
deepest in my mind, it would be to say, that the 
burghers wish to see the affair brought to an end, 
in such a way as to leave no doubt, hereafter, to 
which party they most owe obedience and love, 
since they find it a little hard upon their zeal, to 
have so large demands of these services made by 
both parties." 


" Thou canst not serve God and Mammon, son 
so sayeth one who could not deceive." 

" And so sayeth reason, too, worshipful monk 
but to give thee at once my inmost soul, I believe 
there is not a man in our Deurckheim, who believes 
himself strong enough in learning to say, in this 
strife of duties, which is God and which is 
Mammon 1" 

" How ! do they call in question our sacred 
mission our divine embassy in short, our being 
what we are V 9 

" No man is so bold as to say that the monks of 
Limburg are what they are ; that might be irrev 
erent to th 1 ; Church, and indecent to Father Sieg 
fried ; and the most we dare to say is, that they 
seem to be what they are ; and that is no small 
matter, considering the way things go in this world. 
Seem to be, Gottlob, said my poor father, and 
thou wilt escape envy and enemies ; for in this 
seemliness there is nothing so alarming to others ; 
it is only when one is really the thing itself, that men 
begin to find fault. If thou wishest to live peaceably 
with thy neighbors, push nothing beyond seemiag to 
be, for that much all will bear, since all can seem ; 
whereas being oftentimes sets a whole village in an 
uproar. It is wonderful the virtue there is in seem 
ing, and the heart-burnings and scandal, ay, and the 
downright quarrels there are in being just what one 
seems. No, the most we say, in Deurckheim, is 
that the monks of Limburg seem to be men of God." 

" And Lord Emich ?" 

" As to Count Emich, father, we hold it wise to 
remember he is a great noble. The Elector has 
not a bolder knight, nor the emperor a truer vassal ; 
we say, therefore, that he seems to be brave and 

" Thou makest great account, son, of these appa 
rent qualities." 


"Knowing the frailty of man, father, and the 
great likelihood of error, when we wish to judge 
of acts and reasons, that lie deeper than our know 
ledge, we hold it to be the most prudent. No, let 
us of Deurckheim alone, as men of caution !" 

" For a cow-herd, thou wantest not wit Canst 
read ? 

" By God s favor, Providence put that little acci 
dent in my way when a child, reverend monk, and 
I picked it up, as I might swallow a sweet morsel." 

" Tis a gift more likely to injure than to serve 
one of thy calling. The art can do little benefit to 
thy herd !" 

" I will not take upon myself to say, that any of 
the cattle are much the better for it; though, to 
deal fairly by thee, reverend Benedictine, there are 
animals among them that seem to be." 

" How ! wilt thou attempt to ohow a fact not only 
improbable but impossible ? Go to, thou hast fallen 
upon some silly work of a jester. There have been 
numberless of these commissions of the devil poured 
forth, since the discovery of that imprudent brother 
of Mainz. I would gladly hear in what manner a 
beast can profit by the art of printing ? 

" Thy patience, Father Siegfried, and thou shalt 
know. Now here is a hind that can read, and there 
is one that cannot. We will suppose them both the 
servants of Emich of Hartenburg. Well, they go 
forth of a morning with their herds ; this taking the 
path to the hills of the Count, and that, having read 
the description of the boundaries between his Lord s 
land and that of the holy Abbot of Limburg, taking 
another, because learning will not willingly follow 
ignorance ; whereupon the reader reaches a nearer 
and better pasture, than he who hath gone about to 
feed upon ground that has only been trodden upon 
too often before, by hoof of beast and foot of man." 

" m hv learning hath not done much towards 


clearing thy head, Gottlob, whatever it may have 
done for the condition of thy herd !" 

" If your worship has any doubts of my being 
what I say, here is proof of its justice, then I know 
nothing that so crams a man and confuses him as 
learning ! He who has but one horn can take it and 
go his way ; whereas he that hath many, may lose 
his herd while choosing between instruments that 
are better or worse. He that hath but one sword, 
will draw it and slay his enemy : but he that hath 
much armor, may lose his life while putting on his 
buckler or head-piece." 

" I had not thought thee so skilful in answers. 
And thou thinkest the good people of Deurckheiro 
will stand neuter between the Abbey and the Count V 

" Father, if thou wilt show me by which side they 
will be the greatest gainers, I think I might venture 
to say, with some certainty, on which side they will 
be likely to draw the sword. Our burghers are 
prudent townsmen, as I have said, and it is not 
often that they are found fighting against their own 

" Thou shouldst know, son, that he who is most 
favored in this life, may find the balances of justice 
weighing against him in the next ; while he who 
suffers in the flesh, will be most likely to find its 
advantage in the spirit." 

" Himmel ! In that case, reverend Benedictine, 
the most holy Abbot of Limburg himself may fare 
worse hereafter then even a hind who now lives 
like a dog !" exclaimed Gottlob, with an air of ad 
miration and simplicity that completely misled his 
listener. " The one is said to comfort the body in 
various ways, and to know the difference between 
a cup of pure Rhenish and a draught of the washy 
liquors that come from the other side of our moun 
tains ; while the other, whether it be of necessity 
or inclination I will not take upon myself to say. 


drinks only of the spring. Tis a million of pities 
that one never knoweth which to choose, present 
ease with future pain, or a starving body with a 
happy soul ! Believe me, Father Siegfried, were thy 
reverence to think more of these trials that befall us 
ignorant youths, thou wouldst not deal so heavily 
with the penances, as thine own severe virtue often 
tempts thee to do." 

"What is thus done is done- for thy health, future 
and present By chastening the spirit in this man 
ner, it is gradually prepared for its final purification, 
and thou art not a loser in the eyes of thy fellows, 
by leading a chaste life. Thou wilt have justice at 
the settlement of the great account." 

" Nay, I am no greedy creditor, to dun Provi 
dence for my dues. I very well know that what 
will come cannot be prevented, and therefore I take 
patience to be a virtue. But I hope these accounts, 
of which you tell us so often, are kept with sufficient 
respect for a poor man; for, to deal fairly with 
thee, father, we have not overmuch favor in settling 
those of the world." 

" Thou hast credit for all thy good deeds with thy 
fellows, Gottlob." 

" I wish it were true ! To me it seems that the 
world is ready enough to charge, while it is as nig 
gardly as a miser in giving credit I never did an 
evil act and as we are all mortal and frail, most 
holy monk, these accidents will befall even your 
saint or a Benedictine that the deed itself and all 
its consequences were not set down against me, in 
letters that a short-sighted man might read ; while 
most of my merits and considering I am but a 
cow-herd they are of respectable quality seem to 
be forgotten. Now your Abbot, or his Highness the 
Elector, or even Count Emich " 

" The Summer Landgrave !" interrupted the monk, 


" Summer or winter, as thou wilt, Father Sieg. 
fried, he is Count of Hartenburg, and a noble of 
Leiningen. Even he does no deed of charity, or 
even of simple justice, that all men do not seize upon 
the occasion to proclaim it, as eagerly as they en 
deavor to upbraid me for the accidental loss of a 
beast, or any other little backsliding, that may be 
fall one, who being bold under thy holy instruction, 
sometimes stumbles against a sin." 

" Thou art a casuist, and, at another time, I must 
look more closely into the temper of thy mind. At 
present, thou mayst purchase favor of the Church 
by enlisting a little more closely in her interests. I 
remember thy cleverness and thy wit, Gottlob, for 
both have been remarked in thy visits to the con 
vent ; but, until this moment, there has not been suf 
ficient reason to use the latter in the manner that 
we may fairly claim to do, considering our frequent 
prayers, and the other consolations afforded in thy 

" Do not be too particular, Father Siegfried, for 
thy words reveal grievous penance !" 

" Which may be much mitigated in future, if not 
entirely avoided, by a service that I would now pro 
pose to thee, honest Gottlob, and which I will ven 
ture to say, from my knowledge of thy reverence 
for holy things, as is manifest in thy attentions to 
the pious hermit, and thy love for the Abbey of 
Limburg, thou wouldst not refuse to undertake." 

" So !" 

" Nay, I have as good as pledged myself to Father 
Bonifacius to procure either thee, or one shrewd 
and faithful as thee, to do a trusty service for the 

" The latter might not be easy among the cow 

" Of that I am sure. Thy skill in the manage 
ment of the beasts may yet gain thee the office of 


ending the ample herds of the abbey. Thou art 
ilready believed fit for the charge." 

" Not to deny my own merits, sagacious father, I 
have already some knowledge of the pastures." 

" And of the beasts, too, Gottlob ; we keep good 
note of the characters of all w r ho come to our con 
fessionals. There are worse than thine among them, 
I do assure thee." 

" And yet have I never told thee half that I might 
say of myself, father 1" 

" It is not important now. Thou knowest the state 
of the contest between Count Emich and our Abbey. 
The service that I ask of thee, son, is this ; and by 
discharging it, with thy wonted readiness, believe 
me thou wilt gain favor with St. Benedict and his 
children. We have had reason to know, that there 
is a strong band of armed men in the castle, ready 
and anxious to assail our walls, under a vain belief 
that they contain riches and stores to repay the sac 
rilege ; but we want precise knowledge of their 
numbers and intentions. Were we to send one of 
known pursuits on this errand, the Count would find 
means to mislead him ; whereas, we think a hind of 
thy intelligence might purchase the Church s kind 
ness without suspicion." 

" Were Count Emich to get Wrnd of the matter, 
he would not leave me an ear with which to listen 
to thy holy admonitions." 

" Keep thine own council, and he will not suspect 
one of thy appearance. Hast no pretext for visiting 
the castle 7 ?" 

" Nay, it would be easy to make a thousand. Here, 
I might say, I wished to ask the cow-herd of Lord 
Emich for his cunning in curing diseased hoofs, 
or I might pretend a wish to change my service, or, 
there is no want of laughing damsels in and abou* 
the hold." 



" Enough : thou art he, Gottlob, for whom I have 
sought daily for a fortnight. Go thy way, then, 
without fail, and seek me, after to-morrow s mass, 
in the Abbey." 

" It may be enough on the side of Heaven, father, 
but men of our prudence must not forget their mor 
tal state. Am I to risk my ears, do discredit to 
rny simplicity, and neglect my herd, without a mo 
tive r 

" Thou wilt serve the Church, son ; get favor in 
the eyes of our reverend Abbot, and thy courage 
and dexterity will be remembered in future indul 

" That I shall serve the Church it is well known 
to me, reverend Benedictine, and it is a privilege of 
which a cow-herd hath reason to be proud ; but, by 
serving the Church, I shall make enemies on earth, 
for two sufficient reasons : first, that the Church is 
in no great esteem in this valley ; and second, be 
cause men never love a friend for being any better 
than themselves. * No, Gottlob, used my excellent 
father to say, * seem to all around thee conscious or 
thy unworthiness, after which thou mayst be what 
thou seemest. On this condition only can virtue live 
at peace with its fellow-creatures. But if thou 
wouldst have the respect of mankind, would he 
say, set a fair price on all thou doest, for the world 
will not give thee credit for disinterestedness ; and 
if thou workest for naught, it will think thou de- 
servest naught No, did he shake his head and add, 
* that which cometh easy is little valued, while that 
which is costly, do men set a price upon. * 

" Thy father was, like thyself, one that looked to 
his ease. Thou knowest that we inhabitants of cells 
do not carry silver." 

" Nay, righteous Benedictine, if it were a trifle of 
gold, I am not one to break a bargain for so small a 


" Thou shalt have gold, then. On the faith of my 
holy calling, I will give thee an image of the Em 
peror in gold, shouldst thou succeed in bringing the 
tidings we require." 

Gottlob stopped short, and kneeling, he reverently 
asked the monk to bless him. The latter complied, 
half doubting the discretion of employing such an 
emissary, between whose cunning and simplicity he 
was completely at fault. Still, as he risked nothing, 
except in the nature of the information he was to 
receive, he saw no sufficient reason for recalling the 
commission he had just bestowed. He gave the de 
sired benediction, therefore ; and our two conspir 
ators descended the mountain in company, discours 
ing, as they went, of the business on which the cow 
herd was about to proceed. When so near the road 
as to be in danger of observation, they separated, 
each taking the direction necessary to his object. 


" And not a matron, sitting at her wheel, 
But could repeat their story " 


THE female, enveloped in her mantle, had so well 
profited by the timely interposition of Gottlob Frinck, 
as to quit the hermit s hut without attracting the no 
tice of the Benedictine. But the vigilance of young 
Berchthold had not been so easily eluded. He 
stepped aside as she glided through the door, then 
stooping merely to catch the eye of the cow-herd, 
to whom he communicated his intention by a sign, 
he followed. Had the forester felt any doubts as to 
the identity of her he pursued, the light and active 
movement would have convinced him, that age, at 


least, had no agency in inducing her to conceal he* 
features. The roe-buck of his own forests scarce 
bounded with more agility than the fugitive fled, on 
first quitting the abode of the recluse ; nor did her 
speed sensibly lessen, until she had crossed most of 
the melancholy camp, and reached a spot where 
the opening of the blue and star-lit void showed that 
she was at the verge of the wood, and near the 
margin of the summit of the mountain. Here she 
paused, and stood leaning against a cedar, like one 
whose strength was exhausted. 

Berchthold had followed swiftly, but without 
losing that appearance of calmness and of superior 
physical force which gives dignity to the steps of 
young manhood, as compared with the timid but 
more attractive movements of the feebler sex. He 
seemed conscious of his greater powers, and un 
willing to increase a flight that was already swifter 
than circumstances required, and which he knew to 
be far more owing to a vague and instinctive alarm, 
than to any real cause for apprehension. When the 
speed of the female ceased, his own relaxed, and 
he approached the spot where she stood panting for 
breath, like a cautious boy, who slackens his haste 
in order not to give new alarm to the bird that has 
just alighted. 

" What is there so fearful in my face, Meta, that 
thou fleest my presence, as I had been the spirit of 
one of those Pagans that they say once peopled this 
camp 1 It is not thy wont to have this dread of a 
youth thou hast known from childhood, and I will 
say, in my own defence, known as honest and true !" 

" It is not seemly in a maiden of my years it 
was foolish, if not disobedient, to be here at this 
hour," answered the hurried girl : " I would I had 
not listened to the desire of hearing more of th 
holy hermit s wisdom !" 

" Thou art not alone, Meta !" 


"That were unbecoming, truly, in my father s 
child !" returned the young damsel, with an expres 
sion of pride of condition, as she glanced an eye to 
wards the fallen wall, among whose stones Berch- 
thold saw the well-known form of a female servitor 
of his companion s family. " Had I carried impru 
dence to this pass, Master Berchthold, thou wouldst 
have reason to believe, in sooth, that it was the 
daughter of some peasant, that by chance had 
crossed thy footstep." 

" There is little danger of that error/ answered 
Berchthold quickly. " I know thee well ; thou art 
Meta, the only child of Heinrich Frey, the Burgo 
master of Deurckheim. None know thy quality 
and hopes better than I, for none have heard them 
oftener !" 

The damsel dropped her head in a movement of 
natural regret and sudden repentance, and when 
her blue eye, softened by a ray of the moon, met 
the gaze of the forester, he saw that better feelings 
were uppermost. 

" I did not wish to recount my father s honors, 
nor any accidental advantage of my situation, and, 
least of all, to thee," answered the maiden, with 
eagerness ; " but I felt concern lest thou shouldst 
imagine I had forgotten the modesty of my sex and 
condition or, I had fear that thou mightest thy 
manner is much changed of late, Berchthold !" 

" It is then without my knowledge or intention. 
But we will forget the past, and thou wilt tell me, 
what wonder hath brought thee, to this suspected 
and dreaded moor, at an hour so unusual ?" 

Meta smiled, and the expression of her counte 
nance proved, that if she had moments of uncharita 
ble weakness, they were more the offspring of the 
world s opinions, than of her own frank and gene 
rous nature. 

" I might retort the question on thee, Berchthold, 


and plead a woman s curiosity as a reason why 
1 should be quickly answered Why art thou here, 
at an hour when most young hunters sleep V 

" I arn Lord Emich s forester ; but thou, as there 
has just been question, art a daughter of the Burgo 
master of Deurckheim." 

" I give thee credit for all the difference. Did 
my mother know that I was thus about to furnis.h a 
reason for my conduct, she would say, Keep thy 
explanations, Meta, for those who have a right to 
demand them ! " 

" And Heinrich Frey ?" 

" He would be little likely to approve of either 
visit or explanation." 

" Thy father loves me not, Meta?" 

* He does not so much disapprove of thee, Master 
Berchthold, as that thou art only Lord Emich s for 
ester. Wert thou as thine own parent was, a sub 
stantial burgher of our town, he might esteem thee 
much. But thou hast great favor with my dear 
mother !" 

" Heaven bless her, that in her own prosperity 
she hath not forgotten those who have fallen ! I 
think that, in thy heart as in thy looks, Meta, thou 
more resemblest thy mother than thy father." 

" I would have it so. When I speak to thee of 
my being the child of Heinrich Frey, it is without 
thought of any present difference between us, I do 
affirm to thee, Berchthold, but rather as showing 
that in not forgetting my station, I am not likely to 
do it discredit. Nay, I know not that a forester s 
is a dishonorable office ! They who serve the 
Elector in this manner are noble." 

" And they who serve nobles, simple. I am but 
a menial, Meta, though it be in a way to do little 
mortification to my pride." 

" And what is Count Emich but a vassal of the 
Elector, who, in turn, is a subject of the Emperor ! 


Thou shalt not dishonor thyself in this manner, 
Berchthold, and no one say aught to vindicate thee." 

" Thanks, dearest Meta. Thou art the child of 
my mother s oldest and closest friend, and whatever 
the world may proclaim of the difference that now 
exists between us, thy excellent heart whispers to 
the contrary. Thou art not only the fairest, but, in 
truth, the kindest and gentlest damsel of thy town !" 

The daughter, only child, and consequently the 
heiress of the wealthiest burgher of Deurckheim, did 
not hear this opinion of Lord Emich s handsome 
forester without great secret gratification. 

" And now thou shalt know the reason of this un 
usual visit," said Meta, when the silent pleasure ex 
cited by the last speech of young Berchthold had a 
little subsided ; " for this have I, in some measure, 
promised to thee ; and it would little justify thy good 
opinion to forget a pledge. Thou knowest the holy 
hermit, and the sudden manner of his appearance in 
the Heidenmauer H" 

" None are ignorant of the latter, and thou hast 
already seen that I visit him in his hut." 

"I shall not pretend to give, or to seek, the 
reason, but sure it is, that he had not been a week 
in the old Roman abode, when he sought occasion 
to show me greater notice than to any other maiden 
of Deurckheim, or than any merit of mine might 

"How! is the knave but a pretender to this 
sanctity, after all !" 

" Thou canst not be jealous of a man of his years ; 
and, judging by his worn countenance and hollow 
eye, years too of mortification and suffering ! He 
truly is of a character to give a youth of thy age, 
and gentle air, and active frame, and comely ap 
pearance, uneasiness ! But I see the color in thy 
cheek, Master Berchthold, and will not offend thee 
with comparisons that are so much to thy disadvan- 


tage. Be the motive of the holy hermit what it will, 
on the two occasions when he visited our town and 
in the visits that we maidens have often made to his 
cell, he hath shown kind interest in my welfare and 
future hopes, both as they are connected with this 
life, and with that to which we all hasten, although 
it be with steps that are not heard even by our own 

" It does not surprise me, that all who see and 
know thee, Meta, should act thus. And yet I find 
it very strange !" 

" Nay," said the amused girl, " now thou justifiest 
the exact words of old Use, who hath often said to 
me, * Take heed, Meta, and put not thy faith too 
easily in the language of the young townsmen ; for, 
by looking closely into their meaning, thou wilt see 
that they contradict themselves. Youth is so eager 
to obtain its end, that it stops not to separate the 
true from the plausible. These are her very words, 
and oft repeated too, which thou hast just verified 
I believe the crone fairly sleepeth on that pile of 
the fallen wall !" 

" Disturb her not. One of her years hath great 
need of rest : nay, it would be thoughtless to rob 
her of this little pleasure !" 

Meta had made a step in advance, seemingly 
with intent to arouse her attendant, when the hur 
ried words and rapid action of the youth caused 
her to hesitate. Receding to her former attitude, 
beneath the shadow of the cedar, she more consid 
erately resumed 

" It would be ungracious, in sooth, to awaken one 
who hath so lately toiled up this weary hill." 

" And she so aged, Meta !" 

" And one that did so much for my infancy ! 
ought to go back to my father s house, but my kind 
mother will overlook the delay, for she loveth Use 
little less than one of her own blood." 


* Thy mother knoweth of this visit to the hermit s 
hut, then?" 

" Dost think, Master Berchthold, that a Burgo 
master of Deurckheim s only child would go forth, 
at this hour, without permission had ? There would 
be great unseemliness in such secret gossiping, and 
a levity that would better suit thy damsels of Count 
Emich s village : they say indeed, in our town, that 
the castle damsels are none too nice in their man 
ner of life." 

" They belie us of the mountain strangely, in the 
towns of the plain ! I swear to thee, there is not 
greater modesty in thy Deurckheim palace, than 
among our females, whether of the village or of the 

" It may be true in the main, and, for the credit 
of my sex, I hope it is so ; but thou wilt scarce find 
courage, Berchthold, to say aught in favor of her 
they call Gisela, the warder s child 1 More vanity 
have I never seen in female form !" 

" They think her fair, in Hartenburg." 

" Tis that opinion which spoileth the creature s 
manner ! Thou art much in her society, Master 
Berchthold, and I doubt not that use causeth thee 
to overlook some qualities that are not concealed 
from strangers. * Do but regard that flaunting 
bird from the pass of the Jaegerthal, said the excel 
lent old Use, one morn that we had a festival in our 
venerable church, to which the country round came 
forth in their best array ; one would imagine, from 
its fluttering, and the movements of its feathers, that 
it fancied the eye of every young hunter was on its 
plumage, and that it dreaded the bolt of the archer 
unexpectedly ! And yet have I known animals of 
this breed, that did not so greatly fear the fowler s 
nand, if truth were said ! " 

" Thou judgest Gisela harshly ; for though of 
some lightness of speech, and haply not without ad- 


miration of her own beauty, the girl is far from 
being uncompanionable, or, at times, of agreeable 

* Nay, I do but repeat the words of Use, Master 
Berchthold !" 

" Thy Use is old, and garrulous, and is like to 
utter foolishness." 

" This may be so but let it be foolish, if thou 
wilt the folly of my nurse is my folly. I have 
gained so much from her discourse, that I fear it is 
now too late to amend. To deal fairly with thee, 
she did not utter a syllable concerning thy warder s 
daughter that I do not believe." 

Berchthold was but little practised in the ways 
of the human heart. Free in the expression of his 
own sentiments as the air he breathed on his native 
hills, and entirely without thought of guilt, as re 
spects the feeling which bound him to Meta, he had 
never descended into the arcana of that passion of 
which he was so completely the subject, without 
indeed knowing even the extent of his own bondage. 
He viewed this little ebullition of jealousy, therefore, 
as a generous nature regards all injustice, and he 
entered only the more warmly into the defence of 
the injured party. One of those sieve-like hearts 
that have been perforated a hundred times by the 
shots that Cupid fires, right and left, in a capital, 
would probably have had recourse to the same ex 
pedient, merely to observe to what extent he could 
trifle with the feelings of a being he professed to 

Europeans, who are little addicted to looking into 
the eye of their cis- Atlantic kinsman in search of 
the mote, say, that the master passion of life is but 
a sluggish emotion in the American bosom. That 
those who are chiefly employed in the affairs of this 
world should be content with the natural course of 
the affections, as they arise in the honest relations 


of the domestic circle, is quite as probable, as it is 
true that they who feed their passions by vanity and 
variety, are mistaken when they think that casual 
and fickle sensations compose any of the true ingre 
dients of that purifying and elevated sentiment, 
which, by investing the admired objett with all that 
is estimable, leads us to endeavor to be worthy of 
the homage we insensibly pay to virtue. In Berch- 
tnold and Meta, the reader is to look for none of 
that constitutional fervor, which sometimes substi 
tutes impulse for a deeper feeling, or for any of that 
factitious cultivation of the theory of love, that so 
often tempts the neophyte to mistake his own hallu 
cinations for the more natural attachment of sym 
pathy and reason. For the former they lived too 
far north, and for the latter it might possibly be said, 
that fortune had cast their lot a little too far south. 
That subtle and nearly indefinable sympathy be 
tween the sexes, which we call love, to which all 
are subject, since its principle is in nature itself, ex 
ists perhaps in its purest and least conventional form 
precisely in the bosoms of those whom Providence 
has placed in the middle state, between extreme cul 
tivation and ignorance ; between the fastidious and 
sickly perversion of over-indulgence, and the selfish 
ness that is the fruit of constant appeals to exertion ; 
or the very condition of the two young persons that 
have been placed before the reader in this chapter. 
Enough has been seen to show that Berchthold, 
though exercising a menial office, had received 
opinions superior to his situation ; a circumstance 
that is sufficiently explained by the allusions already 
made to the decayed fortunes of his parents. His 
language and manner, therefore, as he generously 
vindicated Gisela, the daughter of the person charg 
ed to watch the approaches of Lord Emich s castle 
was perhaps superior to what would have been ex 
pec ted in a mere forester. 


" I shall not take upon myself the office of point 
ing out the faults of our castle beauty, if faults she 
hath," he said; "but this much may I say in hei 
defence, without fear of exceeding truth ; her father 
is grown gray under the livery of Leiningen, and 
there is not a child in the world that showeth more 
reverence or affection to him who gave her being, 
than this same bird of thine, with its flaunting 
plumes, and the coquetry with the archer s bolt !" 

" Tis said, a dutiful daughter will ever make an 
excellent and an obedient wife." 

" The luckier then will he be who weds old 
Friedrich s child. I have known her keep the gates, 
deep into the night, that her father might take his 
rest, when the nobles have frequented the forest 
later than common ; ay, and to watch weary hours, 
when most of her years and sex would find excuses 
for being on their pillows. Now, this have I often 
seen, going forth, as thou mayst be certain by my 
office, in Count Emich s company, in most of his 
hunts. Nay, Gisela is fair, none will deny ; and it 
may be that, among her other qualities, the girl 
knows it." 

" She appeareth not to be the only one of thy 
Hartenburg pile that is aware of the fact, Master 
Berchthold !" 

" Dost thou mean, Meta, the revelling abbe, from 
Paris, or the sworn soldier-monk of Rhodes, that 
now abide in the castle ?" asked the young forester, 
with a simplicity that would have set the heart of a 
coquette at ease, by its perfect nature and openness. 
"Now thou touchest on the matter, I will own, 
though one of my office should be wary of opinions 
on those his master loves, but I know thy prudence, 
Meta Therefore will I say, that I have half sus 
pected these two ill-assorted servants of the church, 
of thinking more of the poor girl than is seemly." 

"Thy poor Gisela hath cause to hang herself! 


Truly, were wassailers, like these thou namest, to 
regard me with but a free look, the Burgomaster of 
Deurckheim should know of their boldness !" 

" Meta, they would riot dare ! Poor Gisela is not 
the offspring of a stout citizen, but the warder of 
Hartenburg s child, and there may be some differ 
ence in thy natures, too n ay, there is ; for thou art 
not one of those that seek the admiration of each 
cavalier that passeth, but a maiden that knoweth her 
worth, and the meed that is her due. That thou 
hast, in something, wronged our beauty of the hold, 
I needs must say; but to compare thee with her, 
either in the excellence of the body or that of the 
mind, is what could never be done justly. If she is 
fair, thou art fairer ; if she is witty, thou art wise !" 

" Nay, do not mistake me, Berchthold, by think 
ing that I have uttered aught against thy warder s 
daughter that is harsh and unseemly. I know the 
girl s cleverness, and moreover I am willing to ac 
knowledge, that one cruelly placed by fortune in 
a condition of servitude, like her s, may find it no 
easy matter to be always what one of her sex and 
years could wish. I dare to say, that Gisela, did 
fortune and opportunity permit, would do no dis 
credit to her breeding and looks, both of which, 
sooth to say, are somewhat above her condition." 

" And thou saidst, thy mother knew of this visit 
to the hermit?" 

"And said truth. My mother has never made 
objection to any reverence paid by her daughter to 
the Church or to its servants." 

"That hath she not! Thou art amongst the 
most frequent of those who resort to the Abbey in 
quest of holy offices thyself, Meta !" 

" Am I not a Christian ! Wouldst have a well-re 
spected maiden forget her duties ?" 

" I say not that ; but there is discourse amongst 
js hunters, that of late the prior hath much preferred 


his young nephew, Brother Hugo, to the duty of 
quieting the consciences of the penitents. It were 
better that some father, whose tonsure hath a ring 
of gray, were put into the confessional, in a church 
so much frequented by the young and fair of Deurck 

" Thou wouldst do well to write of this to the 
Bishop of Worms, or to our holy Abbot, in thine 
own scholarly hand. Thou hast the clerkly gifts, 
Master Berchthold, and might persuade !" 

" I would that the little I have done in this way 
had not so failed of its design. Thou hast had fre 
quent proofs of its sincerity, if not of its skill, Meta." 

" Well, this is idle, and leads me to forget the 
hermit: My mother I know not why and now 
thou makest me think of it, I find it different from 
her common rule ; but it is certain that she in no 
wise discourages these visits to the Heidenmauer. 
We are very young, Berchthold, and may not yet 
understand all that enters into older and wiser 
heads !" 

" It is strange that the holy man should seek just 
us ! If he most urges his advice on you among the 
damsels of the town, he most gives his counsel to 
me among the youths of the Jaegerthal !" 

There was a charm in this idea which held these 
two young and unpractised minds in sweet thraldom 
for many fleeting minutes. They conversed of the 
unexplained sympathy between the man of God and 
themselves, long and with undiminishing interest in 
the subject, for it seemed to both that it contained a 
tie to unite them still closer to each other. What 
ever philosophy and experience may pretend on such 
subjects, it is certain that man is disposed to be su 
perstitious in respect to the secret influences that 
guide his fortunes, in the dark passage of the world. 
Whether it be the mystery of the unforeseen future, 
or the consciousness of how much of even his 


most prized success is the result of circumstances 
that he never could or did control, or whether God, 
with a view to his own harmonious and sublime 
ends, has implanted this principle in the human 
breast, in order to teach us dependence on a supe 
rior power, it is certain that few reach a state of 
mind so calculating and reasoning as not to trust 
some portion of that which is to come, to the 
chances of Fortune, or to Providence ; for so we 
term the directing power, as the mind clings to or 
rejects the immediate agency of the Deity, in the 
conduct of the subordinate concerns o. .ife. In the 
age of which we write, intelligence had not made 
sufficient progress to elevate ordinary minds above the 
arts of necromancy. Men no longer openly consult 
ed the entrails of brutes, in order to learn the will of 
fate, but they often submitted to a dictation scarcely 
less beastly, and few indeed were they who were 
able to separate piety from superstition, or the 
grand dispensations of Providence from the insig 
nificant interests of selfishness. It is not surprising, 
therefore, that Berchthold and Meta should cling to 
the singular interest that the hermit manifested in 
them respectively, as an omen propitious to their 
common hopes; common, for though the maiden 
had not so far relinquished the reserve she still deem 
ed essential to her sex, as to acknowledge all she 
felt, that subtle instinct which unites the young arid 
innocent left little doubt in the mind of either, of the 
actual state of the other s inclinations. 

Old Use had consequently ample time to rest her 
frame, after the painful toil of the ascent between 
the town and the camp. When Meta at length ap 
proached to arouse her, the garrulous wcman broke 
out in exclamations of surprise at the shortness of 
the interview with the hermit, for the soundness of 
her slumbers left her in utter ignorance of the ap 
pearance and disappearance of Berchthold. 


" It is but a moment, Meta dear," she said, 
we came up the hill, and I fear them hast not given 
sufficient heed to the wise words of the holy man. 
We should not reject a wholesome draught because 
it proves bitter to the mouth, child, but swallow all 
to the last drop, when we think there is healing in 
the cup. Didst deal fairly by the hermit, and tell 
him honestly of thy evil nature ?" 

" Thou forgettest, Use, the hermit has not even 
the tonsure, and cannot shrive and pardon." 

" Nay, nay I know not that ! A hermit is a man 
of God; and a man of God is holy; and any 
Christian may, ay, and should pardon; and as to 
shriving, give me a self-denying recluse, who passes 
his time in prayer, mortifying soul and body, before 
any monk of Limburg, say I ! There is more vir 
tue in one blessing from such a man, than in a dozen 
from a carousing Abbot I know not but I might 
say fifty." 

" But I had his blessing, nurse." 

" Well, that is comforting, and we have not wea 
ried our limbs for naught ; but thou shouldst have 
told him of thy wish to wear the laced boddice, at 
the last mass, in order that thy equals might envy 
thy beauty. It would have been wholesome to have 
acknowledged that sin, at least." 

" But he questioned me not of my sins. All his dis 
course was of my father s house, and of my good 
mother, and and of other matters." 

" Thou shouldst then have edged the boddice in 
among the other matters. Have I not always fore 
warned thee, Meta, of the danger of pride, and of 
stirring envy in the bosom of a companion ? There 
is naught more uncomfortable than envy, as I know 
by experience. Oh ! I am no longer young ; and 
come to me if thou wouldst wish to know what 
envy is, or any other dangerous vice, and I warrant 
thee thou shalt hear it well explained Ay, thou 


wert very wrong not to have spoken of the bod 
dice !" 

" Had it been fit to confess, I might have found 
more serious sins to own, than any that belong 
to dress." 

" I know not that ! Dress is a great beguiler 
of the young heart, and of the handsome face. If 
thou hast beauty in thy house, break thy mirrors 
that the young should not know it, is what I have 
heard a thousand times ; and as thou art both young 
and fair, I will repeat it, though all Deurckheim 
gainsay my words, thou art in danger if thou 
knowest it. No, hadst thou told the hermit of that 
boddice, it might have done much good. What 
matters it to such a man, whether he hath the ton 
sure or not? He hath prayers, and fastings, and 
midnight thought, and great bodily suffering, and 
these are surely worth as much hair as hath ever 
fallen from all the monks in the Palatinate. I would 
thou hadst told him of that boddice, child !" 

" Since thou so wishest it, at our next meeting it 
shall be said, dear Use ; so set thy heart at peace." 

" This will give thy dear mother great pleasure ; 
else, why should she consent that a daughter of 
her s should visit a heathenish camp, at so late an 
hour? I warrant thee that she thought of the 
boddice !" 

" Do cease speaking of the garment, nurse ; my 
thoughts are bent on something else." 

" Well, if indeed thou thinkest of something else, 
it may be amiss to say more at present, though, 
Heaven it knows ! thou hast great occasion to 
recall that vain-glorious mass to thy mind. How 
suddenly thy communion with the hermit ended to 
night, Meta !" 

" We have not been long on the mountain, truly, 
Use. But we must hasten back, lest my mother 
ihould be uneasy." 


" And why should she be so 1 Am I not with thee ? 
Is age nothing, and experience, and prudence, and 
an old head, ay, and, for that matter, an old body 
too, and a good memory, and such eyes as no other 
in Deurckheim of my years hath I say of my 
years, for thou hast better ; and thy dear mother s 
are little worse than thine but of my years, few 
have their equal. At thy age, girl, I was not the 
old Use, but the lively Use, and the active, and, God 
forgive me if there be vain-glory in the words ! but 
truth should always be spoken the handsome Use, 
and this too without aid from any such boddice as 
that of thine." 

" Wilt never forget the boddice ! here, lean on 
me, nurse, or thy foot may fail thee in the steep 

Here they began to descend, and as they were 
now at a point of the path where much caution 
was necessary, the conversation in a great measure 

He who visits Deurckheim now, will find suffi 
cient remaining evidence to show that the town 
formerly extended more towards the base of the 
mountain than its present site would prove. There 
are the ruins of walls and towers among the vine 
yards that ornament the foot of the hill, and tra 
dition speaks of fortifications that have long since 
disappeared, rendered useless by those improve 
ments in \varfare that have robbed so many other 
strong places of their importance. Then, every 
group of houses on an eminence was more or less 
a place of defence ; but the use of gunpowder and 
artillery centuries ago rendered all these targets 
useless, and he who would now seek a citadel, is 
most sure to find it buried in some plain or morass. 
The world has reached another crisis in improve 
ment for the introduction of steam is likely to alter 
ill its systems of offence and defence both by lrv\d 


rind sea ; but be the future as it may, the skill of the 
engineer had not so far ripened at the period of our 
tale, as to prevent Meta and her attendant from 
entering within walls of ancient construction, clum 
sily adapted to meet the exigencies of the imperfect 
state of the existing art. As the hour was early, 
they had no difficulty in reaching the Burgomaster s 
door without attracting remark. 


" What news ?" 

"None, my lord ; but that the world is grown honest." 
" Then is doomsday near !" 


WITHIN the whole of these widely extenued 
states, there is scarcely a single vestige of the man 
ner of life led by those who first settled in the 
wilderness. Little else is found to arrest the eye 
of the antiquary in the shape of a ruin, except the 
walls of some fortress or the mounds of an in- 
trenchment of the war of independence. We have, 
it is true, some faint remains of times still more re 
mote ; and there are even a few circumvallations, 
or other inventions of defence, that are believed to 
have once been occupied by the red man ; but in no 
part of the country did there ever exist an edifice, 
of either a public or a private nature, that bore any 
material resemblance to a feudal castle. In order, 
therefore, that the reader shall have as clear a pic 
ture as our feeble powers can draw, of the hold oc 
cupied by the sturdy baron who is destined to act a 
conspicuous part in the remainder of this legend, it 
has become necessary to enter at some length into 
a description of the surrounding localities, and of 


the building itself We say of the reader, for we 
profess to write only for the amusement fortunate 
shall we be if instruction may be added of our 
own countrymen : should others be pleased to read 
these crude pages, we shall be flattered and of 
course grateful ; but with this distinct avowal of oui 
object in holding the pen, we trust they will read 
with the necessary amount of indulgence. 

And here we shall take occasion to hold one mo 
ment s communion with that portion of the reading 
public of all nations, that, as respects a writer, com 
poses what is termed the world. Let it not be 
said of us, because we make frequent reference to 
opinions and circumstances as they exist in our 
native land, that we are profoundly ignorant of the 
existence of all others. We make these references, 
crime though it be in hostile eyes, because they best 
answer our end in writing at all, because they 
allude to a state of society most familiar to our own 
minds, and because we believe that great use has 
hitherto been made of the same things, to foster 
ignorance and prejudice. Should we unheedingly 
betray the foible of national vanity that foul and 
peculiar blot of American character ! we solicit 
forgiveness ; urging, in our own justification, the 
aptitude of a young country for falling insensibly 
into the vein of imitation, and praying the critical 
observer to overlook any blunders in this way, if 
perchance we should not manifest that felicity of 
execution which is the fruit only of great practice. 
Hitherto we believe that our modesty cannot justly 
be impeached. As yet we have left the cardinal 
virtues to mankind in the gross, never, to our 
knowledge, having written of " American courage ;" 
or " American honesty," nor yet of " American 
beauty," nor haply of " American manliness," nor 
even of " American strength of arm," as qualities 
abstracted and not common to our fellow-creatures; 


out have been content, in the unsophisticated lan 
guage of this western clime, to call virtue, virtue 
and vice, vice. In this we well know how much 
we have fallen short of numberless but nameless 
classical writers of our own time, though we do not 
think we are greatly losers by the forbearance, be 
cause we have sufficient proof that when we wish 
to make our pages unpleasant to the foreigner, we 
can effect that object by much less imposing allu 
sions to national merits ; since we have good reason 
to believe, there exists a certain querulous class of 
readers who consider even the most delicate and 
reserved commendations of this western world, as 
so much praise unreasonably and dishonestly ab 
stracted from themselves. As for that knot in our 
own fair country, who aim at success by flattering 
the stranger, and who hope to shine in their own 
little orbits by means of borrowed light, we commit 
them to the correction of a reproof which is certain 
to come, and, in their cases, to come embittered by 
the consciousness of its being merited by a servility 
as degrading as it is unnatural. As they dive 
deeper into the secrets of the human heart, they 
will learn there is a healthful feeling that cannot be 
repulsed with impunity, and that as none are so re 
spected as they who fearlessly and frankly maintain 
their rights, so none are so contemned as those who 
ignobly desert them. 

During the time that Berchthold was holding con 
verse with Meta, on the mountain of the Heiden- 
mauer, Emich of Leiningen was at rest in his castle 
of Hartenburg. It has already been said, that the 
hold was of massive masonry, the principal material 
being the reddish sand-stone, that is so abundantly 
found in nearly the whole region of the ancient Pa 
latinate. The building had grown with time, and 
that which had originally been a tower had swelled 
into a formidable and extensive fortress. In the 


ages which succeeded th3 empire of Charlemagne, 
he who could rear one of these strong places, and 
maintain it in opposition to his neighbors, became 
noble, and in some measure a sovereign. He estab 
lished his will as law for the contiguous territory, 
and they who could not enjoy their own lands, with- 
out submitting to his pleasure, were content to pur 
chase protection by admitting their vassalage. No 
sooner was one of these local lords firmly estab- 
ished in his hold, by receiving service and homage 
from the husbandmen, than he began to quarrel 
with his nearest neighbor of his own condition. 
The victor necessarily grew more powerful by his 
conquests, until, from being the master of one castle 
and one village, he became in process of time the 
master of many. In this manner did minor barons 
swell into power and sovereignty, even mighty po 
tentates tracing their genealogical and political 
trees into roots of this wild growth. There still 
stands on an abrupt and narrow ledge of land, in 
the confederation of Switzerland and in the Canton 
of Argovie, a tottering ruin, that, in past ages, was 
occupied by a knight, who from his aerie over 
looked the adjoining village, and commanded the 
services of its handful of boors. This ruined castle 
was called Hapsbourg, and is celebrated as the cra 
dle of that powerful family which has long sat upon 
the throne of the Cassars, and which now rules so 
much of Germany and Upper Italy. The King of 
Prussia traces his line to the House of Hohenzol- 
lern, the offspring of another castle ; and number 
less are the instances in which he who thus laid the 
corner-stone of a strong place, in ages when secu 
rity was only to be had by good walls, also laid the 
foundation of a long line of prosperous and puissant 

Neither the position of the castle of Hartenburg, 
however, nor the period in which it was founded, 


was likely to lead to results great as these just 
named. As has been said, it commanded a pass im 
portant for local purposes, but not of so much mo 
ment as to give him who held the hold any material 
rights beyond its immediate influence. Still, as the 
family of Leiningen was numerous, and had other 
branches and other possessions in more favored por 
tions of Germany, Count Emich was far from being 
a mere mountain chief. The feudal system had be 
come methodized long before his birth, and the laws 
of the Empire secured to him many villages and 
towns on the plain, as the successor of those who 
had obtained them in more remote ages. He had 
recently claimed even a higher dignity, and wider 
territories, as the heir of a deceased kinsman ; but 
in this attempt to increase his power, and to elevate 
his rank, he had been thwarted by a decision of his 
peers. It was to this abortive assumption of dignity, 
that he owed the soubriquet of the Summer Land 
grave ; for such was the rank he had claimed, and 
the period for which he had been permitted to bear it. 
With this knowledge of the power of their fam 
ily, the reader will not be surprised to hear that 
the castle of the Counts of Hartenburg, or, to be 
more accurate, of the Counts of Hartenburg-Lein- 
ingen, was on a commensurate scale. Perched on 
the advanced spur of the mountain, just where the 
valley was most confined, and at a point where the 
little river made a short bend, the pass beneath lay 
quite at the mercy of the archer on its battlements. 
In the fore-ground, all that part of the edifice which 
came into the view was military, and, in some slight 
degree, fitted to the imperfect use that was then 
made of artillery ; while in the rear arose that maze 
of courts, chapels, towers, gates, portcullises, state 
rooms, offices, and family apartments, that marked 
the usages and tastes of the day. The hamlet which 
lay in the dell, immediately beneath the walls of the 


salient towers, or bastions, for they partook of both 
characters, was insignificant, and of little account in 
estimating the wealth and resources of the feudal 
lord. These came principally from Deurckheim, 
and the fertile plains beyond, though the forest was 
not without its value, in a country in which the ax 
had so long been used. 

We have said that Emich of Leiningen was taking 
his rest in the hold of Hartenburg. Let the reader 
imagine a massive building, in the centre of the con 
fused pile we have mentioned, rudely fashioned to 
meet the wants of the domestic economy of that 
age, and he will get a nearer view of the interior. 
The walls were wainscoted, and had much uncouth 
and massive carving; the halls were large and 
gloomy, loaded with armor, and at this moment 
pregnant with armed men ; the saloons of the me 
dium size which suited a baronial state, and all the 
appliances of that mingled taste in which comfort 
and luxury, as now understood, were unknown, but 
which was not without a portion of the effect that 
is produced by an exhibition of heavy magnificence. 
With few but signal exceptions, Germany, even at 
this hour, is not a country remarkable for the ele 
gancies of domestic life. Its very palaces are of 
simple decoration, its luxuries of a homebred and 
inartificial kind, and its taste is rarely superior, and 
indeed not always equal, to our own. There is still 
a shade of the Gothic in the habits and opinions of 
this, constant people, who seem to cultivate the sub 
tle refinements of the mind, in preference to the 
more obvious and material enjoyments which ad 
dress themselves to the senses. 

Quaint and complicated ornaments, wrought by 
the patient industry of a race proverbial for this de 
scription of ingenuity; swords, daggers, morions, 
cuirasses, and all sorts of defensive armor then in 
use ; such needle-work, as it befitted a noble dame 


to produce; pictures that possessed most of the 
faults and few of the beauties of the Flemish school ; 
furniture that bore some such relation to the garni 
ture of the palaces of electors and kings, as the 
decorations of a village drawing-room in our own 
time, bear to those of the large towns ; a profuse 
display of plate, on which the arms of Leiningen 
were embossed and graven in every variety of style , 
with genealogical trees and heraldic blazonry in 
colors, were the principal features. 

Throughout the whole pile, there was little ap 
pearance, however, of the presence of females, or 
even of the means of their accommodation. Few 
of that sex were seen in the corridors, or offices, 
or courts; though men crowded the place in un 
usual numbers. The latter were chiefly grim and 
whiskered warriors, who loitered in the halls, or in 
the more public parts of the castle, like idlers w r ait- 
ing for the expected movement of exertion. None 
among them were armed at all points, though this 
carelessly wore his morion, that had buckled on a 
breast-plate, and another leaned listlessly on his ar- 
quebuse or handled his pike. Here a group exer 
cised, in levity, with their several weapons of of 
fence ; there a jester amused a crowd of sluggish 
listeners, with his ribaldry and humor ; and number 
less were those who quaffed of the Rhenish of their 
lord. Although this continent had then been discov 
ered, the goodly portion which has since fallen to 
our heritage was still in the hands of its native pro 
prietors ; and the plant, so long known as the weed 
of Virginia, but which has since become a staple of 
so many other countries in this hemisphere, was not 
in its present general use amongst the Germans ; 
else would it have been our duty to finish this hasty 
sketch, by enveloping it all in mist. Notwithstand 
ing the general air of indifference and negligence, 
which reigned within the walls of Hartenburg with- 


out the gates, in the turrets, and on the advanced 
towers, there was the appearance of more than the 
customary watchfulness. Had one oeen there to 
note the circumstance, he would have seen, in ad 
dition to the sentries who always guarded the ap 
proaches of the castle, several swift-footed spies on 
the look-out, in the hamlet, on the rocks of the 
mountain-side, and along the winding paths; and 
as all eyes were turned towards the valley in the 
direction of Limburg, it was evident tnat the event 
they awaited was expected to arrive from that 

While such was the condition of his hold and of 
so strong a body of his vassals, Count Emich him 
self had retired from observation, to one of the 
quaint, half-rude, half-magnificent saloons of the 
place. The room was lighted by twenty tapers, and 
other well-known signs indicated the near approach 
of guests. He paced the large apartment with a 
heavy and armed heel ; while care, or at least se 
vere thought, contracted the muscles around a hard 
and iron brow, which bore evident marks of familiar 
acquaintance with the casque. Perhaps this is the 
only country of Christendom, even now, in which 
the profession of the law is a pursuit still more hon 
orable and esteemed than that of arms the best 
proof of a high and enviable civilization but at the 
age of our narrative, the gentleman that was not of 
the Church, the calling which nearly monopolized 
all the learning of the times, was of necessity a sol 
dier. Emich of Leiningen carried arms therefore 
as much in course, as the educated man of this cen 
tury reads his Horace or Virgil ; and as nature had 
given him a vigorous frame, a hardy constitution, 
and a mind whose indifference to personal suffering 
amounted at times to ruthlessness, he was more 
successful in his trade of violence, than many a 


pale and zealous student proves in the cultivation of 

The musing Count scarce raised his looks from 
the oaken floor he trod, as menial after menial ap 
peared, moving with light step in the presence of 
one so dreaded and yet so singularly loved. At 
length a female, busy in some of the little offices of 
her sex, glided before his half-unconscious sight. 
The youth, the bloom, the playful air, the neat coif, 
the tight boddice, and the ample folds of the falling 
garments, at length seemed to fill his eye with the 
form of his companion. 

" Is it thou, Gisela ?" he said, speaking mildly, as 
one addresses a favored dependant. " How fareth 
it with the honest Karl ? 

" 1 thank my lord the Count, his aged and wound 
ed servant hath less of pain than is commonly his 
lot. The limb he has lost in the service of the 
House of Leiningen " 

" No matter for the leg, girl thou art too apt to 
dwell upon that mischance of thy parent." 

" Were my lord the Count to leave a limb on the 
held, it might be missed when he was hurried !" 

" Thinkest thou, child, that my tongue would 
never address the Emperor without naming the de 
fect { Go to, Gisela ; thou art a calculating hussy, 
and rarely permittest occasion to pass without allu 
sion to this growing treasure of thy family. Are 
my people actively on the watch, with or without 
their limbs]" 

"They are as their natures and humors tend. 
Blessed Saint Ursula knows where the officers of 
the country have picked up so ungainly a band, as 
these that now inhabit Hartenburg ! One drinketh. 
from the time his eyes open in the rnorn until they 
shut at even; another sweareth worse than the 
northern warriors that do these ravages in the Pa 
latinate ; this a foul dealer in ribaldry : that a glutton 


who never moveth lip but to swallow ; and none ; 
nay, not a swaggerer of them all, hath civil word 
for a maiden, though she be known as one esteemed 
in their master s household." 

" They are my vassals, girl, and stouter men at 
need are not mustered in Germany." 

" Stout in speech, and insolent of look, my Lord 
Count, but most odious company to all, of modest 
demeanor and of good intentions, in the hold." 

" Thou hast been humored by thy mistress, girl, 
until thou sometimes forgettest discretion. Go and 
look my guests are informed that the hour of the 
banquet is at hand ; I await the pleasure of their 

Gisela, whose natural pertness had been some 
what heightened by an indulgent mistress, and in 
whom consciousness of more beauty than ordinarily 
falls to the share of females of her condition had 
produced freedom of language that sometimes 
amounted to temerity, betrayed her discontent in a 
manner very common to her sex, when it is undis 
ciplined, or little restrained by a wholesome educa 
tion. She pouted, taking care however that Emich s 
eye was again turned to the floor, tossed her head 
and quitted the room. Left to himself, the Count 
relapsed into his reverie. In this mariner did several 
minutes pass unheeded. 

" Dreaming, as usual, noble Emich, of escalades 
and excommunication!" cried a gay voice at his 
elbow, the speaker having entered the saloon unseen 
" of revengeful priests, of vassalage, of shaven 
abbots, the confessional and penance dire, thy rights 
redressed, the frowning conclave, the Abbey cellar, 
thy morion, revenge, and, to sum up all, in a word 
that covers every deadly sin, that fallen angel the 
Devil !" 

Emich forced a grim smile at this unceremonious 
and comprehensive salutation, accepting the offered 


hand of him who uttered it, however, with the frank 
freedom of a boon companion. 

" Thou art right welcome, Albrecht," he replied, 
" for the moment is near when my ghostly guests 
should arrive ; and to deal fairly by thee, I never 
feel myself quite equal to a single combat of wits 
with the pious knaves; but thy support will be 
enough, though the whole Abbey community were 
of the party." 

" Ay, we are akin, we sons of Saint John and 
these bastards of Saint Benedict. Though more 
martial than your monks of the hill, we of the island 
are sworn to quite as many virtues. Let me see," 
he added, counting on his fingers with an air of bold 
licentiousness ; " firstly are we vowed to celibacy 
and your Benedictine is no less so then are we self- 
dedicated to chastity, as is your Limburg monk; 
next we respect our oaths, as does your Father 
Bonifacius; then both are servants of the holy cross;" 
by a singular influence the speaker and the Count 
made the sacred symbol on their bosoms, as the for 
mer uttered the word, " and, doubt it not, I shall be 
the equal of the reverend brotherhood. They say 
sin can match sin, and saint should surely be saint s 
equal I But, Emich, thou art graver than becometh 
a hot carousal, like this we meditate !" 

" And thou gay as if about to gallant the dames 
of Rhodes to one of thy island festivals !" 

The Knight of Saint John regarded his attire 
with complacency, strutting by the side of his host, 
as the latter resumed his walk, with the air of a bird 
of admired plumage. Nor was the remark of the 
Count of Hartenburg misapplied, since his kinsman 
and guest had, in reality, expended more labor on his 
toilette than was customary in the absence of fe 
males, and in that rude hold. Unlike the stern and 
masculine Emich, who rarely divested himself of all 
his warlike gear, the sworn defender of the Cros 


appeared entirely in a peaceful guise, if the long 
rapier that dangled at his side, and which to a much 
later period formed an indispensable accompani 
ment of one of gentle condition, could be excepted 
from the implements of war. His doublet, fully 
decorated with embroidery, fringes, and loops, and 
dotted with buttons, was of a pale orange stuff, that 
was puffed and distended about his person, in the 
liberal amplitude of the prevailing fashion. The 
nether garment, which scarce appeared, however, 
essential as it might be, was of the same material, 
and cut with a similar expenditure of cloth. The 
hose were pink, and, rolling far above the knee, 
gave the effect of a rich coloring to the whole pic 
ture. He wore shoes whose upper-leather rose 
high against the small of the leg, buckles that cov 
ered the instep, and about the throat and wrists 
there was a lavish display of lace. The well-known 
Maltese cross dangled by a red ribbon, at a button 
hole of the doublet ; not above the heart, as is the 
custom at present among the chevaliers of the other 
hemisphere, but, by a vagary of taste, so low as to 
demonstrate, if indeed there is any allusion intended 
by the accidental position of these jewels, that the 
honorable badge was assumed in direct reference to 
that material portion of the human frame which is 
believed to be the repository of good cheer ; an in 
terpretation that, in the case of Albrecht of Vieder- 
bach, the knight in question, was perhaps much 
nearer to the truth than he would have been willing 
to own. After poising himself, first on the point of 
one shoe, and then on the other, smoothing his 
ruffles, shoving the rapier more aside, and otherwise 
adjusting his attire to his mind, the professed soldier 
of Saint John of Jerusalem pursued the discourse. 

" I am decent, kinsman," he replied ; " fit to be 
a guest at thy hospitable board, if thou wilt, in the 
absence of its fair mistress, but beyond that un- 


worthy to be named. As for the dames of our un 
happy and violated Rhodes, dear cousin, thou 
knowest little of their humors, if thou fanciest that 
this rude guise would have any charm in their re 
fined eyes. Our knights were used to bring into 
the island the taste and improvements of every dis 
tant land ; and small though it be, there are few por 
tions of the earth, in which the human arts, for so I 
call the decoration of the human body, flourished 
more than in our circumscribed, valiant, and much 
regretted Rhodes. Thus was it, at least, until the 
fell Ottoman triumphed !" 

" Fore God, I had thought thee sworn to all 
sorts of modesty, in speech, life, and other absti 
nences !" 

" And art thou not sworn, most mutinous Emich, 
to obey thy liege lords, the Emperor and the Elector 
nay, for certain of thy lands and privileges, art 
thou not bound to knight s service and obedience to 
^he holy Abbot of Limburg ? 

" God s curse on him and on all the others of that 
grasping brotherhood 1" 

" Ay, that is but the natural consequence of thy 
oath, as this doublet is of mine. If the rigid per 
formance of a vow is as agreeable to the body, as we 
are taught it may be healthful to the soul, Count of 
Leiningen, where would be the merit of observance ? 
I never don these graceful garments, but a whole 
some remembrance of watchful nights passed on 
the ramparts, of painful sieges and watery trenches, 
or of sickly cruises against the Mussulmans, do not 
present themselves in the shape of past penances. 
In this manner do we sweeten sin, by our bodily 
pains, and by the memory of hours of virtuous 
hardships !" 

" By the three sainted Kings of Koeln, and the 
eleven thousand virgins of that honored city, Master 
Albrecht I but thou wert much favored in thy nar- 


row island, if it were permitted to thee to sin in this 
fashion, with the certainty of tempering punishment 
with so light service ! These griping monks of 
Limburg make much of their favors, and he who 
would go with a safe skin, must needs look to an 
indulgence had and well paid for, in advance. I 
know not the number of goodly casks of the purest 
Rhenish that little sallies of humor may have cost 
me, first and last, in this manner of princely ex 
penditure ; but certain am I, that did occasion offer, 
the united tributes would leave little empty space in 
Prince Friedrich s vaunted tun, in his ample cellars 
of Heidelberg!" 

" I have often heard of that royal receptacle of 
generous liquor, and have meditated a pilgrimage 
in honor of its capacity. Does the Elector receive 
noble travellers with a hospitality suited to his rank 
and means ?" 

" That doth he, and right willingly, though this 
war presses sorely, and giveth him other employ 
ment. Thy wayfaring will not be weary, for thou 
mayst see the towers of Heidelberg from off these 
hills, and a worthy steed might be pricked from this 
court of mine into that of Duke Friedrich in a 
couple of hours of hard riding." 

" When the merits of thy cellar are exhausted, 
noble Emich, it will be in season to put the Tun to 
the proof," replied the Knight of Rhodes, " as our 
esteemed friend here, the Abbe, will maintain, in 
the face of all the reformers with which our Ger 
many is infested." 

In introducing another character, we claim the 
reader s patience for a moment of digression. What 
ever may be said of the merits and legality of the 
Reformation, effected chiefly by the courage of Lu 
ther (and we are neither sectarian nor unbeliever, to 
deny the sacred origin of the church from which he 
dissented,) it is very generally admitted, that the 


long and undisputed sway of the prevailing author 
ity of that age, had led to abuses, which called 
loudly for some change in its administration. 
Thousands of those who had devoted their lives to 
the administrations of the altar, were quite as 
worthy of the sacred office as it falls to man s lot 
to become ; but thousands had assumed the tonsure, 
the cowl, or the other symbols of ecclesiastical duty, 
merely to enjoy the immunities and facilities the 
character conferred. A long and nearly undisputed 
monopoly of letters, the influence obtained by the 
unnatural union between secular and religious 
power, and the dependent condition of the public 
mind, the legitimate consequence of both, induced 
all who aspired to moral pre-eminence, to take this, 
the most certain, because the most beaten, of the 
paths that led to this species of ascendency. It is 
not alone to the religion of Christendom, as it ex 
isted in the time of Luther, that we are to look for 
an example of the baneful consequence of spiritual 
and temporal authority, as blended in human insti 
tutions. Christian or Mahommedan, Catholic or 
Protestant, the evil comes in every case from the 
besetting infirmity which tempts the strong to op 
press the weak, and the powerful to abuse their 
trusts. Against this failing there seems to be no 
security but an active and certain responsibility. 
So long as the severe morality required of its min 
isters, by the Christian faith, is uncorrupted by any 
gross admixture of worldly advantage, there is rea 
son to believe that the altar, at least, will escape 
serious defilement ; but no sooner are these fatal 
enemies admitted to the sanctuary, than a thousand 
spirits, prompted by cupidity, rush rashly into the 
temple, willing to bear with the outward exactions 
of the faith, in order to seek its present and visible 



However pure may be a social system, or a re 
ligion, in the commencement of its power, the pos 
session of an undisputed ascendency lures all alike 
into excesses fatal to consistency, to justice, and to 
truth. This is a consequence of the independent 
exercise of human volition, that seems nearly in 
separable from human frailty. We gradually come 
to substitute inclination and interest for right, until 
the moral foundations of the mind are sapped by in 
dulgence, and what was once regarded with the 
aversion that wrong excites in the innocent, gets to 
be not only familiar, but justifiable by expediency 
and use. There is no more certain symptom of the 
decay of the principles requisite to maintain even 
our imperfect standard of virtue, than when the plea 
of necessity is urged in vindication of any de 
parture from its mandate, since it is calling in the 
aid of ingenuity to assist the passions, a coalition 
that rarely fails to lay prostrate the feeble defences 
of a tottering morality 

It is no wonder, then, that the world, at a period 
when religious abuses drove even churchmen reluc 
tantly to seek relief in insubordination, should ex 
hibit bold instances of the flagrant excesses we have 
named. Military ambition, venality, love of ease, 
and even love of dissipation, equally sought the 
mantle of religion as cloaks to their several objects 
and if the reckless cavalier was willing to flesh his 
sword on the body of the infidel, in order that he 
might live in men s estimation as a hero of the 
cross, so did the trifler, the debauchee, and even 
the wit of the capital, consent to obtain circulation 
by receiving an impression which gave currency to 
all coin, whether of purer or of baser metal, since 
it bore the outward stamp of the Church of God. 

* Reformers, or rather revilers, for that is the 
term they most merit," returned the Abbe, alluded 
to in the last speech of Albrecht of Veiderbach, " I 


consign without remorse to the devil. As for this 
pledge of our brave Knight of Saint John, noble 
Count Emich, so far as I am concerned, it shall be 
redeemed : for I am certain the cellars of Heidel 
berg can resist a heavier inroad than any that is 
likely to invade them by such means. But I am 
late from my chamber, and I had hoped, ere this, to 
have seen our brethren of Limburg ! I hope no un 
necessary misunderstanding is likely to deprive us 
of the satisfaction of their presence, Lord Count ?" 

" Little fear of that, so far as it may depend on 
any disappointment in a feast. If ever the devil 
tempted these monks of the hill, it has been in the 
shape of gluttony. Were I to judge by the expe 
rience of forty years passed in their neighborhood, I 
should think they deem abstinence an eighth deadly 

" Your Benedictine is privileged to consider hos 
pitality a virtue, and the Abbot has fair license for 
the indulgence of some little cheer. We will not 
judge them harshly, therefore, but form our opin 
ions of their merits by their deeds. Thou hast 
many servitors without, to do them honor to-night, 
Lord Emich." 

The Count of Leiningen frowned, and, ere he 
answered, his eye exchanged a glance with that of 
his kinsman, which the Abbe might have interpreted 
into a hidden meaning, had it attracted his obser 

" My people gather loyally about their lord, for 
they have heard of this succor sent by the Elector 
to uphold the lazy Benedictines," was the reply. 
" Four hundred mercenaries lie within the Abbey 
walls this night, Master Latouche, and it should not 
cause surprise that the vassals of Emich of Harten- 
burg are ready with hand and sword to do service 
in his defence. God s mercy ! The cunning priests 
may pretend alarm, but if any here hath cause to be 


afraid, truly it is the rightful and wronged lord of 
the Jaegerthal !" 

" Thy situation, Cousin of Hartenburg," observed 
the wearer of the cross of Saint John, " is, in sooth 
one of masterly diplomacy. Here dost thou stana 
at sword s point with the Abbot of Limburg, ready 
at need to exchange deadly thrusts, and to put this 
long-disputed supremacy on the issue of battle, while 
thou callest on the keeper of thy cellar to bring forth 
the choicest of its contents, in order to do hospitality 
and honor to thy mortal foe ! This beateth, in all 
niceties, Monsieur Latouche, the situation of an 
abbe of thy quality, who is scarce churchman 
enough to merit salvation, nor yet deep enough in 
sin to be incontinently damned in the general mass 
of evil-doers." 

" It is to be hoped that we shall share the com 
mon lot of mortals, which is to receive more grace 
than they merit," returned the Abbe, a title that in 
fact scarce denoted one seriously devoted to the 
Church. " But I trust this present meeting between 
/he hostile powers may prove amicable ; for, not to 
conceal the truth, unlike our friend the Knight here, 
I am of none of the belligerent orders." 

" Hark !" exclaimed the host, lifting a finger to 
command attention: "Heard ye aught? 

" There is much of the music of thy growlers in 
the courts, cousin, and some oaths in a German that 
needs be translated to be understood ; but that bless 
ed signal the supper-bell is still mute." 

Go to! Tis the Abbot of Limburg and his 
brethren, Fathers Siegfried and Cuno. Let us to 
the portal, to do them usual honor." 

As this was welcome news to both the Knight 
and the Abbe, they manifested a suitable desire to 
be foremost in paying the required attention to a 
personage, as important in that region as the rich 
and powerful chief of the neighboring religious es 



" Why not f The deeper sinner, better saint." 


A WILD and plaintive note had been sounded on 
a horn far in the valley towards the hill of Limburg. 
This melodious music was of common occurrence, 
for of all that dwell in Europe, they who inhabit 
the banks of the Rhine, the Elbe, the Oder, and the 
Danube, with their tributaries, are the most addicted 
to the cultivation of sweet sounds. We hear much 
of the harshness of the Teutonic dialects, and of 
the softness of those of Latin origin; but, Venice 
and the regions of the Alps excepted, nature has 
amply requited for the inequality that exists between 
the languages, by the difference in the organs of 
speech. He who journeys in those distant lands 
must, as a rule, expect to hear German warbled and 
Italian in a grand crash, though exceptions are cer 
tainly to be found in both cases. But music is far 
more common on the vast plains of Saxony than on 
the Campagna Felice, and it is no uncommon occur 
rence to be treated by a fair-haired postilion of the 
former country, as he slowly mounts a hill, with airs 
on the horn that would meet with favor in the or 
chestra of a capital. It was one of these melan 
choly and peculiar strains which now gave the sig 
nal to the spies of Count Emich, that his clerical 
guests had quitted the convent. 

" Heard ye aught, brothers ?" demanded Father 
Bonifacius of the companions who rode at his side, 
nearly at the same moment that the Lord of Lein- 
ingen put the same question in his hold ; " that horn 
spoke in a meaning strain !" 

" We may be defeated in our wish to reach the 
castle suddenly," returned the monk, already known 


to the reader as Father Siegfried ; " but though we 
fail in looking into Count Emich s secret with our 
own eyes, I have engaged one to do that office for 
us, and in a manner, I trust, that shall put us on the 
scent of his designs. Courage, most holy Abbot, 
the cause of God is not likely to fail for want of 
succor. When were the meek and righteous ever 
deserted ?" 

The Abbot of Limburg ejaculated, in a manner to 
express little faith in any miraculous interposition in 
behalf of his cure, and he drew about him the mantle 
that served in some degree to conceal his person, 
spurring the beast he rode only the quicker, from a 
feverish desire, if possible, to outstrip the sounds, 
which he intuitively felt were intended to announce 
his approach. The prelate was not deceived, for 
no sooner did the wild notes reach the castle, than 
the signal, which had caught the attention of its 
owner, was communicated to those within the walls. 

At the expected summons there was a general 
movement among the idlers of the courts. Subor 
dinate officers passed among the men, hurrying 
those away to their secret lodging places who were 
intractable from excess of liquor, and commanding 
the more obedient to follow. In a very few minutes, 
and long before the monks, who however pricked 
their beasts to the utmost, had time to get near the 
hamlet even, all in the hold was reduced to a state 
of tranquil repose ; the castle resembling the abode 
of any other powerful baron, in moments of pro 
found security. Emich had seen to this disposition 
of his people in person, taking strict caution that no 
straggler should appear, to betray the preparations 
that existed within his walls. When this wise pre 
caution was observed, he proceeded, with his two 
companions, to take a station near the door of the 
building more especially appropriated to the accom- 


tnodation of himself and his friends, in order to 
await the arrival of the monks. 

The moon had ascended high enough to illuminate 
the mountain-side, and to convert the brown towers 
and ramparts of Hartenburg into picturesque forms, 
relieved by gloomy shadows. The signals appeared 
to have thrown all who dwelt in the hamlet, as well 
as they who inhabited the frowning hold which 
overhung that secluded spot, into mute attention. 
For a few minutes the quiet was so deep and gene 
ral, that the murmuring of the rivulet which mean 
dered through the meadows was audible. Then 
came the swift clattering of hoofs. 

" Our churchmen are in haste to taste thy Rhe 
nish, noble Emich," said Albrecht of Viderbach, who 
rarely thought ; " or is it a party of their sumpter 
rnules that I hear in the valley T" 

" Were the Abbot about to journey to some other 
convent of his order, or were he ready to visit his 
spiritual master of Spires, there is no doubt that 
many such cattle would be in his train ; for of all 
lovers of fat cheer, Wilhelm of Venloo, who has 
been styled Bonifacius in his baptism of office, is he 
that most worships the fruits of the earth. I would 
he and all his brotherhood were spiritually planted 
in the garden of Eden ! They should be well water 
ed with my tears !" 

" The wish hath a saintly odor, but may not be 
accomplished without mortal aid unless thou hast 
favor with the Prince Elector of Koeln, who might 
haply do thee that service, in the way of miracle." 

" Thou triflest, knight, in a matter of great grav 
ity," answered Emich roughly, for, notwithstanding 
his inherited and deadly dislike of the particular 
portion of the church which interfered with his own 
power, the Count of Hartenburg had all the depend 
ence on superior knowledge that is the unavoidable 
offspring of a limited education. " The Prince Elec 


tor hath served many noble families in the way thoa 
namest, and he might do honor to houses less de 
serving of his grace, than that of Leiningen. But 
here cometh the Abbot and his boon associates. 
God s curse await them for their pride and avarice!" 

The clattering of hoofs had been gradually in 
creasing, and was now heard even on the pavement 
of the outer court ; for in order to do honor to his 
guests, the count had especially ordered there should 
be no delay or impediment from gate, portcullis, or 

" Welcome, and reverence for thy churchly office, 
right holy Abbot!" cried Emich, from whose lips 
had just parted the malediction, advancing officiously 
to aid the prelate in dismounting " Thou art wel 
come, brothers both ; worthy companions of thy 
respected and honored chief." 

The churchmen alighted, assisted by the menials 
of Hartenburg, with much show of honor on the 
part of the Count himself, and on that of his friends. 
When fairly on their feet, they courteously returned 
the greetings. 

" Peace be with thee, son, and with this cavalier 
and servitor of the Church !" said Father Bonifacius, 
signing with the rapid manner in which a Catholic 
priest scatters his benedictions. " St. Benedict and 
the Virgin take ye all in their holy keeping ! I trust; 
noble Emich, we have not given thee cause of vex 
ation, by some little delay ?" 

" Thou never comest amiss, father, be it at morn, 
or be it at even ; I esteem Hartenburg more than 
honored, when thy reverend head passeth beneath 
its portals." 

" We had every desire to embrace thee, son, but 
certain offices of religion, that may not be neglectedj 
kept us from the pleasure. But let us within ; for 
I fear the evening air may do injury to those tha 
are uncloaked." 


At this considerate suggestion, Emich, with much 
show of respect to his guests, ushered them into the 
apartment he had himself so lately quitted. Here 
recommenced the show of those wily courtesies 
which, in that semi-barbarous and treacherous age, 
often led men to a heartless and sometimes to a blas 
phemous trifling with the most sacred obligations, to 
effect their purposes, and which, in our times, has 
degenerated to a deception, that is more measured 
perhaps, but which is scarcely less sophisticated and 
vicious. Much was said of mutual satisfaction at 
this opportunity of commingling spirits, and the 
blunt professions of the sturdy but politic baron, 
were more than met by the pretending sanctity and 
official charity of the priest. 

The Abbot of Limburg and his companions had 
come to the intended feast with vestments that par 
tially concealed their characters; but when the 
outer cloaks and the other garments were removed, 
they remained in the usual attire of their order, the 
prelate being distinguished from his inferiors by 
those symbols of clerical rank, which it was usual 
for one of his authority to display, when not en 
gaged in the ministrations of the altar. 

When the guests were at their ease, the conver 
sation took a less personal direction, for though rude 
and unnurtured as his own war-horse, as regards 
most that is called cultivation in our bookish days, 
Emich of Hartenburg wanted for none of the cour 
tesies that became his rank, more especially as 
civilities of this nature were held to be worthy of 
a feudal lord, and in that particular region. 

" Tis said, reverend Abbot," continued the host 
pushing the discourse to a point that might favor his 
own secret views, that our common master, the 
Prince Elector, is sorely urged by his enemies, and 
that there are even fears a stranger may usurp the 
rule in the noble Castle of Heidelberg. Hast thou 


heard aught of his late distresses, or of the necesi* 
ties that bear upon his house ?" 

" Masses have been said for his benefit in all ouf 
chapels, and there are hourly prayers that he may 
prevail against his enemies. In virtue of a conces 
sion made to the abbey, by our common father at 
Rome, we offer liberal indulgences, too, to all that 
take up arms in this behalf." 

" Thou art much united in love with Duke Fried- 
rich, holy prelate I" muttered Emich. 

" We owe him such respect as all should willingly 
pay to the strong temporal arm that shields them ; 
our serious fealty is due alone to heaven. But how 
comes it that so stout a baron, one so much esteemed 
in warlike exercises, and so well known in danger 
ous enterprises, rests in his doublet, at a time when 
his sovereign s throne is tottering 1 We had heard 
that thou wert summoning thy people, Herr Count, 
and thought it had been in the Elector s interest." 

" Friedrich hath not of late given me cause to 
love him. If I have called my vassals about me, 
tis because the times teach every noble to be wary 
of his rights. I have consorted so much of late 
with my cousin of Viederbach, this self-denying 
Knight of Rhodes, that martial thoughts will obtrude 
even on the brain of one, peaceful and homebred as 
thy poor neighbor and penitent." 

The Abbot bowed and smiled, like one who gave 
full credit to the speaker s words, while a by-play 
arose between the wandering and houseless knight, 
the abbe, and the brothers of Limburg. In this 
manner did a few minutes wear away, when a 
flourish of trumpets announced that the expected 
banquet awaited its guests. Menials lighted the 
party to the hall in which the board was spread, 
and much ceremonious form was observed in as 
signing to each of the individuals the place suited 
to his rank and character. Count Emich, who in 


common was of a nature too blunt and severe to 
waste his efforts in superfluous breeding, now 
showed himself earnest to please, for he had at 
heart an object that he knew was in danger of 
being baffled by the more practised artifices of the 
monks. During the preliminary movements of the 
feast, which had all the gross and all the profuse 
hospitality which distinguished such entertainments, 
he neglected no customary observance. The ro 
bust and sensual Abbot was frequently plied with 
both cup and dish, while the inferior monks re 
ceived the same agreeable attentions from Albrecht 
of Viederbach, and Monsieur Latouche, who, not 
withstanding it suited his convenience to pass 
through life under the guise of a churchman, was 
none the worse at board or revel. As the viands 
and the generous liquors began to operate on the 
physical functions of the brothers, however, they in 
sensibly dropped their masks, and each discovered 
more of those natural qualities, which usually lay 
concealed from casual observation. 

It was a rule of the Benedictines to practise hos 
pitality. The convent door was never closed 
against the wayfarer, and he who applied for 
shelter and food was certain of obtaining both, ad 
ministered more or less in a manner suited to the 
applicant s ordinary habits. The practice of a vir 
tue so costly was a sufficient pretence for accumu 
lating riches, and he who travels at this day in 
Europe will find ample proofs that the means of 
carrying into effect this law of the order were 
abundantly supplied. Abbeys of this particular 
class of monks are still of frequent occurrence in the 
forest cantons of Switzerland, Germany, and in 
most of the other Catholic states. But the gradual 
and healthful transfer of political power from cler 
ical to laical hands, has long since shorn them of 
their temporal lustre. Many of these abbots were 

108 THE HlilDENMAUfiR- 

formerly princes of the empire, and several of the 
communities exerciser! sovereign sway over territo 
ries that have since taken to themselves the charac 
ter of independent states. 

While the spiritual charge and the mortifications 
believed to characterize a brotherhood of Benedic 
tines, were more especially left to a subordinate 
monk termed the prior, the abbot, or head of the 
establishment, was expected to preside not only 
over the temporalities, but at the board. This fre 
quent communication with the vulgar interests of 
life, and the constant indulgence in its grosser grati 
fications, were but ill adapted to the encouragement 
of the monastic virtues. We have already remarked 
that the intimate connexion between the interests of 
life and those of the church is destructive of apos 
tolical character. This blending of God with Mam 
mon, this device of converting the revealed ordi 
nances of the Master of the Universe into a species 
of buttress to uphold temporal sway, though habit 
has so long rendered it familiar to the inhabitants 
of the other hemisphere, and even to a large portion 
of those who dwell in this, is, in our American eyes, 
only a little removed from blasphemy ; but the tri 
umphs of the press, and the changes made by the 
steady advances of public opinion, have long since 
done away with a multitude of still more equivocal 
usages, that were as familiar to those who existed 
three centuries ago, as our own customs to us at 
this hour. When prelates were seen in armor, 
leading their battalions to slaughter, it is not to be 
supposed that the other dignitaries of this privileged 
class, would be more tender of appearances than 
was exacted by the opinions of the age. 

Wilhelm of Venloo, known since his elevation as 
Bonifacius of Limburg, was not possessed of all 
that temporal authority, however, which tempted so 
many of his peers to sin. Still he was the head of 


a rich, powerful, and respected brotherhood, that 
had many allodial rights in lands beyond the abbey 
walls, and which was not without its claims to the 
fealty of sundry dependants. Of vigorous mind 
and body, this dignified churchman commanded 
much influence by means of a species of character 
that often crosses us in life, a sturdy independence 
of thought and action that imposed on the credulous 
and timid, and which sometimes caused the bold 
and intelligent to hesitate. His reputation was far 
greater for learning than for piety, and his besetting 
sin was well known to be a disposition to encounter 
the shock between the powers of mind and matter, 
as both were liable to be affected by deep potations 
and gross feeding a sort of degeneracy to which 
all are peculiarly liable, who place an unnatural 
check on the ordinary and healthful propensities of 
nature just as one sense is known to grow in 
acuteness as it is deprived of a fellow. The abbot 
loosened his robe, and threw his cowl still farther 
from his neck, while Emich pledged him in Rhenish, 
cup after cup ; and by the time the meats were re 
moved, and the powers of digestion, or we might 
better say of retention, would endure no more, his 
heavy cheeks became flushed, his bright, deeply- 
seated, and searching gray eyes flashed with a spe 
cies of ferocious delight, and his lip frequently quiv 
ered, as the clay gave eloquent evidence of its en- 
ament. Still his voice, though it had lost its re 
ed and schooled tones, was firm, deep, and au 
thoritative, and ever and anon he threw into his 
discourse some severe and pointed sarcasm, bitingly 
scornful. His subordinates, too, gave similar proofs 
of the gradual lessening of their caution, though in 
degrees far less imposing, we had almost said less 
grand, than that which rendered the sensual excite 
ment of their superior so remarkable. Albrecht 
and the abbe also betrayed, each in his own manner, 


the influence of the banquet, and all became garru 
lous, disputative, and noisy. 

Not so with Emich of Hartenburg. He had 
eaten in a manner to do justice to his vast frame 
and bodily wants, and he drank fairly ; but, until 
this moment, the nicest observer would have been 
puzzled to detect any decrease of his powers. The 
blue of his large leaden eyes became brighter, it is 
true, but their expression was yet in command, and 
their language courteous. 

" Thou dost but little compliment to my poor fare, 
most holy Abbot," cried the host, as he witnessed a 
lingering look of the prelate, whose eye followed 
the delicious fragments of a wild boar from the hall 
" If the knaves have stinted thee in the choice of 
morsels, by St. Benedict ! but the mountains of my 
chase can still furnish other animals of the kind 
How now " 

" I pray thee, mercy, noble Emich ! Thy for 
ester hath done thee fair justice with his spear ; more 
savory beast never smoked at table." 

" It fell by the hand of young Berchthold, the 
burgher of Deurckheim s orphan. Tis a bold youth 
in the forest, and I doubt not, his will one day be a 
ready hand in battle. Thou knowest him I mean, 
father, for he is often at thy abbey confessionals." 

" He is better known to the prior than to one so 
busied with worldly cares as I. Is the youth at 
hand ? I would fain render him thanks." 

" Hear ye that, varlet ! Bid my head forester 
appear. The reverend and noble Abbot of Limburg 
owes him grace." 

" Didst thou say the youth was of Deurckheim ?" 

" Of that goodly town, reverend priest ; and, 
though reduced by evil chances to be the ranger of 
my woods, a lad of mettle in the chase, and of no 
bad discourse in moments of ease." 

" Thou claimest hard service, Cousin of Harten- 


burg, of these peaceful townsmen ! Were they left 
freely to choose between the ancient duty of our 
convent, and this stirring life thou leadest the 
artisans, we should have more penitents within our 

The feality of Deurckheim was a long mooted 
point between the corporation of Limburg and the 
house of Leiningen, and the allusion of the monk 
was not thrown away upon his host. Emich s 
brow clouded, and for a moment it threatened a 
storm ; but, recovering his self-command, he an 
swered in a tone of hilarity, though with sufficient 
coolness : 

" Thy words remind me of present affairs, rever 
end Bonifacius, and I thank thee that thou hast put 
a sudden check on festivities which were getting 
warm without an object." The Count arose, and 
filled to the brim a cup of horn, elaborately orna 
mented with gold, drawing the attention of all at 
table to himself by the action. " Nobles and rever 
end servants of God," he continued, " I drink to the 
health and happiness of the honored Wilhelm of 
Venloo, the holy Abbot of Limburg, and my loving 
neighbor. May his brotherhood never know a 
worse guide, and may the lives and contentment of 
all that now belong to it, be as lasting as the abbey 

Emich concluded the potent cup at a single 
draught. In order to do honor to the mitred monk, 
there had been placed by the side of Bonifacius, a 
vessel of agate richly decorated with jewelry, an 
heir-loom of the house of Leiningen. While his 
host was speaking, the looks of the latter watched 
every expression of his countenance, through gray, 
overhanging, shaggy brows, that shaded the upper 
part of his face like a screen of shrubbery planted 
to shut out prying eyes from a close ; and he paused 


when the health was given. Then, rising in his 
turn, he quaffed a compliment in return. 

" I drink of this pure and wholesome liquor," he 
said, " to the noble Emich of Leiningen, to all of his 
ancient and illustrious house, to his and their present 
hopes, and to their final deliverance. May this 
goodly hold, and the happiness of its lord, endure as 
long as those walls of Limburg of which the Count 
has spoken, and which, were his loving wishes con 
sulted, would doubtless stand for ever." 

" By the life of the emperor, learned Bonifacius !" 
exclaimed Emich, striking his fist on the table with 
force, " you as much exceed one of my narrow wit 
in wishes, as in godliness and other excellencies ! 
But I pretend not to set limits to my desires in 
your behalf, and throw the fault of my imperfect 
speech on a youth that had more to do with the 
sword than with the breviary. And now let us to 
serious concerns. It may not be known to you, 
Cousin of Viederbach, or to this obliging church 
man who honors Hartenburg with his presence, 
that there has been subject of amicable dispute be 
tween the brotherhood of Limburg and my un 
worthy house, touching the matter of certain wines, 
that are believed by the one party to be its dues, 
and by the other to be a mere pious grace accorded 
to the church " 

" Nay, noble Emich," interrupted the Abbot, " we 
have never held the point to be disputable in any 
manner. The lands in question are held of us in 
soccage ; and, in lieu of bodily service, we have 
long since commuted for the produce of vines that 
might be named." 

" I cry you mercy ; if there be dues at all, they 
come of naught else than knight s service. None 
of my name or lineage ever paid less to mortal !" 

" Let it be thus," Bonifacius answered more 


mildly. " The question is of the amount of liquor, 
and not of the tenure whence it comes." 

" Thou sayest right, wise Abbot, and I cry mercy 
of these listeners. State thou the matter, reverend 
Bonifacius, that our friends may know the humor 
on which we are madly bent." 

The Count of Hartenburg succeeded in swallow- 
Ing his rising ire, and made a gesture of courtesy 
towards the Abbot, as he concluded. Father Boni 
facius rose again, and notwithstanding the physical 
ravages that excess was making within, it was stiil 
with the air of calmness and discipline that became 
his calling. 

" As our upright and esteemed friend has just 
related," he said, " there is truly a point, of a light 
but unseemly nature to exist between so dear neigh 
bors, open between him and us servants of God. 
The Counts of Leiningen have long considered it a 
pleasure to do favor to the Church, and in this just 
and commendable spirit, it is now some fifty years 
that, at the termination of each vintage, without 
regard to seasons or harvest, without stooping to 
change their habits at every change of weather, 
they have paid to our brotherhood " 

" Presented, priest !" 

" Presented, if such is thy will, noble Emich, 
fifty casks of this gentle liquor that now warms our 
hearts towards each other, with brotherly and 
praiseworthy affection. Now, it has been settled 
between us, to avoid all future motive of contro 
versy, and either the better to garnish our cellars, 
or to relieve the house of Hartenburg altogether of 
future imposition, that it shall be decided this night, 
whether the tribute henceforth shall consist of one 
hundred casks, or of nothing." 

" By re Lady ! A most important issue, and one 
Kkely to impoverish or to enrich !" exclaimed the 
Knisht of Rhodes. 



" As such we deem it," continued the monk, " ana 
in that view, parchments of release, with all due 
appliances and seals, have been prepared by a 
clerkly scholar of Heidelberg. This indenture, duly 
executed," he added, drawing from his bosom the 
instruments in question, * yieldeth to Emich all the 
Abbey s rights to the vines in dispute, and this 
wanteth but his sign of arms and noble name, to 
double their present duty." 

" Hold !" cried the Chevalier of the Cross, whose 
faculties began already to give way, though it was 
only in the commencement of the debauch : " Here 
is matter might puzzle the Grand Turk, who sits in 
judgment in the very seat of Solomon ! If thou 
renderest thy claims, and my cousin Emich yieldeth 
double tribute-money, both parties will be the worse, 
and neither possessed of the liquor !" 

" In a merry mood, it hath been proposed that 
there shall be the trial of love and not of battle, be 
tween us, for the vines. The question is of liquor, 
and it is agreed, St. Benedict befriend me, if there 
be sin in the folly ! to try on whose constitution the 
disputed liquor is the most apt to work good or evil. 
Let the Count of Hartenburg give to his parchment 
the virtue that hath already been given to this 
of ours, and we shall leave both in some place of 
observation; then, when he alone is able to rise 
and seize on both, let him give the victor s cry ; but 
should he fail of that power, and there be a servant 
of the Church ready, and able to grasp the instru 
ments, why let him go, and think no more of land 
that he hath right merrily lost." 

" By St. John of Jerusalem, but this is a most un 
equal contest three monks against one poor baron, 
in a trial of heads !" 

" Nay, we think more of our honor, than to per 
mit this wrong. The Count of Hartenburg hath full 
right to call in equal succor, and I have taken thee, 


gallant cavalier of Rhodes, and this learned Abbe, 
to be his chosen backers !" 

" Let it be so !" cried the two in question, " We 
ask no better service than to drain Count Emich s 
cellars to his honor and profit !" 

But the lord of the hold had taken the matter, as 
indeed it was fully understood between the princi 
pals, to be a question on which depended a serious 
amount of revenue, for all futurity. The wager 
had arisen, in one of those wild contests for physical 
and gross supremacy, which characterize ages and 
countries of imperfect civilization ; for next to deeds 
in arms and other manful exercises, like those of th<2 
chase and saddle, it was deemed honorable to be 
able to undergo the trials of the festive board with 
impunity. Nor should it occasion surprise to find 
churchmen engaged in these encounters ; for, inde 
pendently of our writing of an age when they ap 
peared in the field, there is sufficient evidence that 
our own times are not entirely purified from so 
coarse abuses of the gown. But Bonifacius of Lim- 
burg, though a man of extensive learning and 
strong intellectual qualities, had a weakness on this 
particular point, for which we may be driven to 
seek an explanation in his peculiar animal construc 
tion. He was of a powerful frame and sluggish 
temperament, both of which required strong excite 
ment to be wrought up to the highest point of phys 
ical enjoyment; and neither the examples around 
him, nor his own particular opinions, taught him to 
avoid a species of indulgence that he found so 
agreeable to his constitution. With these serious 
views of a contest, to which neither party would 
probably have consented, had not each great con 
fidence in himself as a well-tried champion, both 
Emich and the Abbot required that the instruments 
should be openly read. The discharge of this duty 
was assigned to Monsieur Latouche, who forthwith 


proceeded to wade through a torrent of unintelligi 
ble terms, that were generated in the obscurity of 
feudal times for the benefit of the strong, and which 
are continued to our own period through pride of 
professional knowledge, a little quickened by a 
view to professional gain. On the subject of the 
true consideration of the respective releases* the 
instruments themselves were silent, though nothing 
material was wanting to give them validity, espe 
cially when supported by a good sword ; or the 
power of the Church, to which the parties looked 
respectively in the event of flaws. 

Count Emich listened warily as his guest the 
Abbe read clause after clause of the deed. Occa 
sionally his eye wandered to the firm countenance 
of the Abbot, betraying habitual distrust of his 
hereditary and powerful enemy, but it w r as quickly 
riveted again on the heated features of the reader. 

"This is well," he said, when both papers had 
been examined : " These vines are to remain for 
ever with me and mine, without claim from any 
grasping churchman, so long as grass shall grow 
or water run, or henceforth they pay double tribute, 
a tax that will leave little for the cellar of their 
rightful lord." 

" Such are our terms, noble Emich. But to con 
firm the latter condition, thy seal and name are 
wanting to the instrument." 

" Were the latter to be written by a good sword, 
none could do the office better than this poor arm, 
reverend Abbot ; but thou knowest well, that my 
youth was too much given to warlike and other 
manly exercises befitting my rank, to allow much 
time for acquiring clerkly skill. By the holy Virgins 
of Koeln ! It were, in sooth, a shame to confess, that 
one of my class in these stirring times had leisure 
for such lady games ! Bring hither an eagle s 
feather^ hand of mine never yet touched aught 


from meaner wing that I may do justice to the 

The necessary implements being produced, the 
Count of Hartenburg proceeded to execute the in 
strument on his part. The wax was speedily 
attached and duly impressed with the bearings of 
Leiningen, for the noble wore a signet-ring of mas 
sive size, ready at all times to give this token of his 
will. But when it became necessary to subscribe 
the name, a signal was made to a domestic, who 
disappeared in quest of the Count s man of charge. 
This individual manifested some reluctance to per 
form the customary office, but, as there was just 
then a clamorous dialogue among the party at 
table, he seized the moment to examine into the 
nature of the document, and the consideration that 
was to decide the ownership of the vineyard. Grin 
ning in satisfaction, at a species of payment in 
which he held it to be impossible Lord Emich could 
fail to acquit himself honorably, the dependant took 
the hand of his master, and, accustomed to the 
duty, he so guided it as to leave a very legible and 
creditable signature. When this had been done, 
and the papers were properly witnessed, the Count 
of Hartenburg glanced suspiciously from the deed 
in his hand to the indomitable face of the Abbot, as 
if he still half repented of the act. " Look you, 
Bonifacius," he said, shaking a finger, " Should 
there be flaw, or doubt of any intention in this our 
covenant, sword of mine shall cut it !" 

" First earn the right, Count of Leiningen. The 
deeds are of equal virtue, and he who would lay 
claim to their benefits must win the wager. We 
arfe but poor brothers of St. Benedict, and little 
worthy to be named with warlike barons and de 
voted followers of St. John, but we have an humble 
trust in our patron." 

" By St. Benedict, it shall pass for a miracle, if 


thou prevailest !" shouted Emich, yielding the deed 
in a burst of delight. " Away with these cups of 
agate and horn, and bring forth vessels of glass, 
that all may see we deal fairly by each other, in 
this right manly encounter. Look to your wits, 
monks. By the word of a cavalier, your Latin will 
do little service in this dispute." 

" Our trust is in our patron," answered Father 
Siegfried, who had already done so much honor to 
the banquet, as to give reason to believe, that, in 
his case, the fraternity leaned upon a fragile staff. 
"He never yet deserted his children, when fairly en 
listed in a good cause." 

" You are cunning in reasons, fathers," put in the 
knight " and I doubt not that sufficient excuses 
would be forthcoming, were you pushed to justify 
service to the devil." 

" We suffer for the church," was the Abbot s an 
swer, after taking a bumper in obedience to a signal 
from his host. " We hold it to be commendable to 
struggle with the flesh, that our altars may flourish/ 

As soon as executed, the two deeds had been 
placed on a high and curiously wrought vessel of 
silver, that contained cordials, and which occupied 
the centre of the board, and more fitting cups hav 
ing been brought, the combatants were compelled to 
swallow draught after draught, at signals from 
Emich, who, like a true knight, saw that each man 
showed loyalty. But, as the conflict was between 
men of great experience in this species of conten 
tion, and as it endured hours, we deem it unworthy 
of the theme to limit its description to a single char> 
ter. Before closing the page, however, we shall di 
gress for a moment, in order to express our opinions 
concerning the great human properties involved in 
this sublime strife. 

It has been the singular fortune of America to be 
the source of numberless ingenious theories, that 


taking their rise in the other hemisphere, have been 
let loose upon the world to answer ends that we 
shall not stop to investigate. The dignified and 
beneficed prelate maintains there is no worship of 
God within our land, probably because there are no 
dignified and beneficed prelates; a sufficiently logical 
conclusion for all who believe in the efficacy of that 
self-denying class of Christians ; while the neophyte, 
in some" lately invented religion, denounces us all in 
a body, as so many miserable bigots, devoted to 
Christ ! In this manner is a pains-taking and plain- 
dealing nation of near fourteen millions of souls kept, 
as it were, in abeyance in the opinions of the rest 
of mankind, one deeming them as much beyond, as 
another fancies them to be short of, truth. In the 
fearful catalogue of our deadly sins, is included a 
propensity to indulge in excesses similar to that it is 
now our office to record. As we are confessedly 
democrats, dram-drinking in particular has been pro 
nounced to be a " democratic vice." 

It has been our fortune to have lived in familiarity 
with a greater variety of men, either considered in 
reference to their characters or their conditions, than 
ordinarily falls to the lot of any one person. We have 
visited many lands, not in the capacity of a courier, 
but staidly and soberly, as becomes a grave occu 
pation, setting up our household gods, and abiding 
long enough to see with our eyes and to hear with 
our ears ; and we feel emboldened to presume on 
these facts, in order to express a different opinion, 
amid the flood of assertions that has been made by 
those who certainly have no better claim to be heard. 
A.nd, firstly, we shall here say that, as in the course 
of justice, an intelligent, upright, single-minded, and 
discriminating witness is, perhaps, the rarest of all 
desirable instruments in effecting its sacred ends, so 
do we acknowledge a traveller, entitled to full credit, 


to be the mortal of all others the least likely to be 

The art of travelling, we apprehend, is far more 
practised than understood. To us it has proved 
a laborious, harassing, puzzling, and oftentimes a 
painful pursuit. To divest oneself of impressions 
made in youth ; to investigate facts without refer 
ring their merits to a standard bottomed on a found 
ation no better than habit; to analyze, and justly to 
compare the influence of institutions, climate, natural 
causes, and practice; to separate what is merely 
exception from that which forms the rule ; or even 
to obtain and carry away accurate notions of phys 
ical things, and, most of all, to possess the gift of im 
parting these results comprehensively and with 
graphical truth, requires a combination of time, oc 
casion, previous knowledge, and natural ability, that 
rarely falls to the lot of a single individual. One as 
sumes the task prepared by acquaintance with estab 
lished opinions, which are commonly no more than 
prejudices, the result of either policy, or of the very 
difficulties just enumerated ; and he goes on his way, 
not only ready but anxious to receive the proofs of 
what he expects, limiting his pleasure to the sort of 
delight, that dependent minds feel in following the 
course pointed out by those that are superior. As 
the admitted peculiarities of every people are suffi 
ciently apparent, he converts self-evident facts into 
collateral testimony, and faithfully believes and im 
agines all that is concealed on the strength of that 
which is obvious. For such a traveller time wears 
away men and things in vain ; he accords his be 
lief to the last standard opinion of his sect, with a 
devotion to convention that might purchase salva 
tion in a better cause. To him Vesuvius is just as 
high, produces the same effect in the view, and has 
exactly the same outline as before the crater fell ; 
and he watches the workmen disinterring a house 


at its base, and goes away rejoicing at having wit 
nessed the resurrection of a Roman dwelling after 
eighteen hundred years of interment, simply because 
it is the vulgar account that Pompeii was lost for 
that period. If he should happen to be a scholar, 
what is his delight in following a cicerone (a title 
assumed by some wily servitore di Piazza) to the 
little garden that overlooks the Roman Forum, arid 
in fancying that he stands upon the Tarpeian Rock ! 
His faith in moral qualities, his graduation of national 
virtue, and his views of manners, are equally the 
captives of the last popular rumor. A Frenchman 
may roll incontinently in the gras de Paris, filled 
with an alcohol inflammable as gunpowder, and in 
his eyes it shall pass for pure animal light-hearted- 
ness, since it is out of all rule for a Frenchman to 
be intoxicated, while the veriest tyro knows that the 
nation dances to a man ! The gallant general, the 
worshipful alderman, the right honorable adviser of 
the king, may stammer around a subject for half an 
hour, in St. Stephen s, in a manner to confound all 
conclusion, and generalize so completely as to baffle 
particularity, and your hearer shall go away con 
vinced of the excellence of the great school of 
modern eloquence, because the orator has been 
brought up at the " feet of Gamaliel." When one 
thoroughly imbued with this pliant faculty, gets into 
a foreign land, with what a diminished reverence 
for his own does he journey ! As few men are en 
dowed with sufficient penetration to pierce the mists 
of received opinion, fewer still are they that are so 
strong in right as to be able to stem its tide. He who 
precedes his age is much less likely to be heard, 
than he who lingers in its rear ; and when the un 
wieldy body of the mass reaches the eminence on 
which he has long stood the object of free comment, 
it may be assumed as certain, that they who were 
his bitterest deriders when his doctrine was new, 


will be foremost in claiming the honors of the ad 
vance. In short, to instruct the world, it is neces 
sary to watch the cm rent, and to act on the public 
mind like the unseen rudder, by slight and imper 
ceptible variations, avoiding, as a seaman would ex 
press it, any very rank sheer, lest the vessel should 
refuse to mind her helm and go down with the 

We have been led into these reflections, by fre 
quent opportunities of witnessing the facility with 
which opinions are adopted concerning ourselves, 
because they have come from the pens of those who 
have long contributed to amuse and instruct us, but 
which are perfectly valueless, both from the una 
voidable ignorance of those who utter them, and 
from the hostile motives that gave them birth. To 
that class which would wish to put in a claim to bon 
ton, by undervaluing their countrymen, we have no 
thing to say, since they are much beyond improve 
ment, and are quite unable to understand all the high 
and glorious consequences dependent on the great 
principles of which this republic is the guardian. 
Their fate was long since settled by a permanent 
and wise provision of human feeling ; but, presum 
ing on the opportunities mentioned, and long habits 
of earnest observation in the two hemispheres, we 
shall conclude this digression by merely adding, that 
it is the misfortune of man to abuse the gifts of God, 
: ,ot him live in what country or under what institu 
tions he may. Excess of the description in question 
is the failing of every people, nearly in proportion 
to their means ; nor are there any certain preven 
tives against a vice so destructive, but absolute 
want, or a high cultivation of the reasoning facul 

He who has accurately ascertained how far the 
people of this republic are behind or before the in 
habitants of other lands, in mental improvement and 


moral qualities, will not be far from the truth in as 
signing to them a correspondent place in the scale 
of sobriety. It is true that many foreigners will be 
ready enough to deny this position, but we have had 
abundant opportunities of observing, that all those 
who visit our shores do not come sufficiently pre 
pared, by observation at home, to make just com 
parisons, and what we have here said has not been 
ventured without years of close and honest investi 
gation. We shall gladly hail the day when it can 
be said, that not an American exists, so lost to him 
self as to trifle with the noblest gift of the Creator ; 
but we cannot see the expediency of attaining an 
end, desirable even as this, by the concession of 
premises that are false. 


What a thrice-double ass 
Was I, to take this drunkard for a god ! 


PHYSICAL qualities are always prized in proportion 
to the value that is attached to those that are purely 
intellectual. So long as power and honor depend 
on the possession of brute force, strength and agility 
are endowments of the last importance, on the same 
principle that they render the tumbler of more ac 
count in his troop ; and he who has ever had occa 
sion to mingle much with the brave, and subject to 
a qualification that will readily be understood, we 
might add, the noble savages of this continent, will 
have remarked, that, while the orators are in gene 
ral a class who have cultivated their art for want 
of qualifications to excel in that which is deemed 
still more honorable, the first requisite in the war- 


rior is stature and muscle. There exists a curious 
document to prove how much even their successors, 
a people in no degree deficient in acuteness, have 
been subject to a similar influence. We allude to a 
register that was made of the thews and sinews 
among the chiefs of the army of Washington, during 
.he moment of inaction that preceded the recog 
nition of Independence. By this report it would 
seem, that the animal entered somewhat into the 
ideas of our fathers, when they made their original 
selection of leaders, a circumstance that we attrib 
ute to the veneration that man is secretly disposed 
to show to physical perfection, until a better train 
ing and experience have taught him there is still a 
superior power. Our first impressions are almost 
always received through the senses, and the connex 
ion between martial prowess and animal force seems 
so natural, that we ought not to be surprised that a 
people so peaceful arid unpractised, in their sim 
plicity, betrayed a little of this deference to appear 
ances. Happily, if they sometimes put matter into 
stations which would have been better filled by 
mind, the honesty and zeal that were so general in 
the patriotic ranks carried the country through in 

It was a consequence of the high favor enjoyed 
by all manly or physical qualities in the sixteenth cen 
tury, that men were even prized for their excesses. 
Thus he who could longest resist the influence of 
liquor was deemed, in a more limited sense, as 
much a hero as he who swung the heaviest mace, 
or pointed the surest cannon in battle. The de 
bauch in which the Abbot of Limburg and his 
neighbor Emich of Leiningen, were now engaged, 
was one of no unusual nature ; for, in a country in 
which prelates appeared in so many other doubtful 
characters, it should not excite surprise that some 
of the class were willing to engage in a strife that 


ru*d little danger, while it was so highly in favor 
with the noble and the great. 

The reader will have seen that great progress 
had been made towards the issue of the celebrated 
encounter it is our duty to relate, even before its 
precise object had been formally introduced among 
the contending parties. But while the monks came 
to the struggle apprized of its motive, and prepared 
at all points to maintain the reputation of their 
ancient and hospitable brotherhood, the Count of 
Leiningen, with a sullen reliance on his own powers, 
that was somewhat increased by his contempt for 
priestcraft, had neglected to bestow the same care 
on his auxiliaries. It is scarcely necessary to add 
that both the Abbe and the knight of Rhodes had 
become heated to garrulousness, before they per 
fectly understood the nature of the service that was 
expected at their hands, or, we ought rather to say, 
of their heads. With this explanation we shall 
resume the narrative, taking up its thread some two 
hours later than the moment when it was last 

At this particular juncture of the strife, Fathers 
Siegfried and Cuno had become thoroughly warmed 
with their endeavors, and habitual and profound 
respect for the Abbot was gradually giving way 
before the quickening currents of their blood. The 
eyes of the former glistened with a species of foren 
sic ferocity, for he was ardently engaged on a con 
troversial point with Albrecht of Viederbach, all of 
whose faculties appeared to be rapidly exhaling 
with^his potations. The other Benedictine and the 
Abhe from time to time mingled in the dispute, in 
the character of seconds, while the two most inter 
ested in the issue sat, warily collecting their powers, 
and sternly regarding each other, like men who 
knew they were not engaged in idle sport. 

" This is well, with thy tales of L Isle Adam, and 


the Ottoman power," continued Father Siegfried 
pursuing the discourse from a point, beyond which 
we consider it unnecessary to record all that passed 
" This will do to repeat to the dames of our Ger 
man courts, for the journey between these Rhenish 
plains and yonder island of Rhodes is far, and few 
are inclined to make it, in order to convict thy 
chiefs of neglect, or their sworn followers of forget- 
fulness of their vows." 

" By the quality of my order ! reverend Benedic 
tine, thou pushest words to unseemliness ! Is it not 
enough, that the chosen and the gentlest of Europe 
should devote soul and body to services that would 
better become thy lazy order that all that is noble 
and brave should abandon the green fields and 
pleasant rivers of their native lands, to endure hot 
suns and sultry winds from Africa, in order to keep 
the unbeliever in his limits, but they must be taunted 
with gibes like these? Go, count the graves and 
number the living, if thou wouldst learn the manner 
in which our illustrious master held out against Sol- 
yman, or wouldst know the services of his knights !" 

" It would sound ill in thy ears, were I to bid thee 
enter purgatory, to inquire into the fruits of our 
masses and prayers, and yet one and the other are 
equally easy to perform. Thou knowest well, that 
Rhodes is no longer a Christian island, and that 
none bearing the cross dare be seen on its shores. 
Go to, Count Albrecht, thy order is fallen into dis 
use, and it is better where it is, hid beneath the 
snowy mountains of the country of Nice, than it 
might be in the front ranks of Christendom. There 
is not a crone in Germany that does not bewail the 
backsliding of an order so esteemed of old, or a 
maiden that does not speak lightly of its deeds ! M 

" Heavenly patience ! hearest thou this, Monsieur^ 
Latouche ? and from the mouth of a chanting Bene- \ 
dictine, who passeth his days between safe walls of 


stone, here in the heart of the Palatinate, and his 
nights on a warm pallet, beyond sound even of the 
rushing winds, unless, in sooth, he be not bent on 
offices of midnight charity among the believing 
wives of the faithful !" 

" Boy ! dost presume to scandalize the Church, 
and dare its anger?" demanded Bonifacius, in a 
voice of thunder. 

" Reverend Abbot," answered Albrecht, crossing 
himself, for habit and policy equally held him sub 
ject to the predominant authority of the age, " the 
little I say is more directed to the man than to his 

" Let him give utterance to all he fancies," inter 
rupted the wily Siegfried. "Is not a knight of 
Rhodes immaculate, and shall we refuse him right 
of speech ? 

" It is held at the court of the chivalrous Valois," 
observed the Abbe, who perceived it was necessary 
to interfere, in order to preserve the peace, " that 
the defence of Rhodes was of exceeding valor, and 
few survived it, who did not meet with high honors 
from Christian hands. We have seen numberless 
of the brave knights among us, in the most esteemed 
houses of Paris, and at the merry castle of Fontaine- 
bleau, and believe me, none were more sought, or 
better honored. The scars of even Marignano 
and of Pavia are less prized than those given by the 
hands of the infidel." 

" Thou dost well, my learned and self-denying 
brother," answered Siegfried, with a sneer, " to re 
mind us of the fight of Pavia, and of thy great mas 
ter s present abode ! Are these tidings of late from 
the Castiles, or is it not permitted to thy prince to 
dispatch couriers to his own capital ?" 

" Nay, reverend monk, thou pressest with unkind 
allusions, and forgettest that, like thee, we are both 
servitors of the Church." 


"We count thee not one nor the other. Mar. 
tyred St. Peter ! what would become of thy keys, 
were they intrusted to the keeping of such hands ! 
Go, doff thy vanities lay aside that attire of velvet, 
if thou wouldst be known as of the flock." 

" Master Latouche," exclaimed Emich, who was 
boiling with indignation, but who preserved his self- 
command in order to circulate the cups, and to see 
that each man did true service in the prescribed 
contest, " tell him of his brother of Wittenberg, and 
of these late doings in the hive. Stick that thorn 
into his side, and thou shalt see him shrink like a 
jaded and galled steed, under a pointed spur ! Who 
art thou, and why dost thou disturb my pleasures ?" 

This sudden interruption of himself was addressed 
by the baron to a youth, in neat but modest attire, 
who had just entered the banqueting-room, and who, 
passing by the menial that filled the glasses at the 
beck of his master s hand, now stood, with a firm 
but respectful mien, at the elbow of the speaker. 

" Tis Berchthold, my lord s forester. They bid 
me come to do your pleasure, noble Count" 

" Thou art seasonably arrived to keep the peace 
between a sworn knight of Rhodes and a garrulous 
monk of Limburg. This reverend Abbot would do 
thee favor, boy." 

Berchthold bowed respectfully, and turned to 
wards the prelate. 

" Thou art the orphan of our ancient liegeman, he 
who bore thy name, and was well esteemed among 
the townsmen of Deurckheim ?" 

" I am the son of him your reverence means, but 
that he was liegeman of any of Limburg, I deny." 

" Bravely answered, boy !" shouted Emich, strik 
ing his fist on the table so hard as to threaten de 
struction to all it held: "Ay, and as becomes thy 
master s follower ! Hast enough, Father Bonifacius, 
or wilt dip deeper into the youth s catechism ?" 


" The young man has been tutored to respect his 
present ease," returned the Abbot, affecting indiffer 
ence equally to the exultation of the Count and to the 
disrespect of his forester. " When he next comes 
to our confessionals, there will be occasion to give 
him other schooling." 

" God s truth ! that hour may never happen. We 
are half disposed to live on in our sins, and to take 
soldier s fortune, in these stirring times ; which is 
ever the chance of sudden death, without the 
church s passport. We are fast getting of this 
mind are we not, brave Berchthold t" 

The youth bowed respectfully, but without an 
swering, for he saw by the inflamed countenances 
and swimming eyes of all at table, that the moment 
was one in which explanations would be useless. 
Had it been possible to doubt the cause of the scene 
he witnessed, the manner in which glass after glass 
was swallowed, at the will of the cup-bearer, would 
have explained its nature. But, far advanced as 
Father Bonifacius had now become in inebriety, in 
common with the other guests, he retained enough 
of his faculties, to see that the words of Emich con 
tained an allusion of a dangerously heretical char 

" Thou art resolved to despise our counsel and 
our warnings !" he exclaimed, glancing fiercely at 
one and the other. Twere better to say at once, 
that thy wish is to see the walls of Limburg Abbey 
lying on the side of Limburg hill." 

" Nay, reverend and honored priest, thou pushest 
a few hasty words beyond their meaning. What 
is it to a Count of the noble house of Le mingen, that 
a few monks find shelter for their heads, and ease 
for their souls, beneath a consecrated roof within 
cannon-shot of his own towers. If thy walls do 
not tumble until hand of mine helps to unsettle them, 
they may stand till the fallen Angel that set them 


up, shall aid in their overthrow. Truly, Father 
Bonifacius, for a godly community, this tale of thy 
sanctuary s origin makes it of none of the best pa 
rentage !" 

" Hear ye that !" sputtered Albrecht of Vieder- 
bach, who, though his tongue had continued to sound 
a sort of irregular accompaniment to his cousin s 
speeches, was no longer able to articulate clearly 
" Here ye that ! imp of St. Benedict ! The devil set 
ye up, and the devil will be your downfall. L Isle 
Adam is a saint to thy holiest; and his good 
sword " 

At this word, the knight of Rhodes succumbed, 
losing his balance in an animated effort to gesticu 
late, and fairly falling under the table. A sarcastic 
smile crossed the Abbot s face, at this overthrow 
of one of his adversaries, while Emich scowled in 
disdain at the ignoble exhibition made by his kins 
man; who, finding it impossible to rise, resigned 
himself to sleep on the spot where he had fallen. 

" Swallow thy Rhenish, monk, and count not on 
the slight advantage thou hast got in the overthrow 
of that prating fool," said the host, whose tones 
grew less and less amicable, as the plot thickened 
" But to a more fitting subject ; Berchthold is worthy 
of his lord, and is a youth that thinks of things 
as things appear. We may quit thy confessionals 
for divers reasons, as thou knowest. Here is the 
Monk of Erfurth ! Ha ! what think you of his new 
teaching, and of the manner in which he advises the 
faithful to come to the altar? You have had him at 
Rome, and at Worms, and among ye in many coun 
cils, and yet the honest man stands fast in all rea 
sonable opinions. Thou hast heard of Luther, is it 
not so, young Berchthold ?" 

" Tis certain, my Lord Count, that few in the 
Jaergerthal escape the tidings of his name." 

" Then are they in danger of a most damnable 


neresy!" interrupted Bonifacius, in a voice of 
thunder. " Why tell me of this driveller of Erfurth, 
Lord Emich, if thou art not in secret praying that 
his rebellious wishes may prosper at the Church s 
cost ! But we mark thee, irreverent Count, and hard 
and griping penance may yet purge thee of these 
prurient fancies" Here the Abbot, inflamed as he 
was with wine and resentment, paused ; for the silent 
monk, Father Cuno, fell from his seat like a soldier 
shot in battle ; the simple inferior having entered 
into the trial of heads, more with a relish for the 
liquor than with any thought of victory, and having, 
in consequence, done so much honor to the pota 
tions, as to become an easy sacrifice to the common 
enemy. The Abbot looked at his prostrate follower 
with grim indifference, showing by his hard, scowl 
ing, and angry eye, that he deemed the loss of little 
moment to the main result. "What matters the 
impotency of a fool !" he muttered, turning away 
to his principal and only dangerous opponent, with 
a full return of all his angry feelings : " That the 
devils are suffered to gain a momentary and spe 
cious triumph, we are well aware, Baron of Harten- 
burg " 

" By my father s bones, proud priest, but thou 
strangely forgettest thyself! Am I not a prince of 
Leiningen, that one of the cowl should please to call 
me less?" 

" I should have said the Summer Landgrave !" 
answered Bonifacius sneeringly, for long-smothered 
hatred was beginning to break through the feeble 
barriers that their reeling faculties still preserved. 
"I crave pardon of your highness; but a short 
reign leaves brief recollections. Even thy subjects, 
illustrious Emich, may be forgiven, that they know 
not their sovereign s title. The coronet that is worn 
from June to September scarce gets the fit of the 


" It was worn longer, Abbot, than ever head of 
thine will wear a saintly crown. But I forget mv 
ancient house, and the forbearance due to a guest, ir. 
honest anger at an artful and malignant monk ! * 

Bonifacius bowed with seeming composure, and 
while each appeared to recover his moderation, in a 
misty recollection of the true affair in Land, the 
dialogue between the Abbe* and Father Siegfried, 
which had been drowned by the stentorian lungs of 
the principal disputants, broke out in the momentary 

" Thou sayest true, reverend father," said the for 
mer, "but were our fair and sprightly dames of 
France to perform these pilgrimages to distant 
shrines, of which thou speakest, rude treatment in 
the wayfaring, evil company, and, haply, designing 
confessors, might tarnish the present lustre of their 
graces, and leave them less ornaments to our brilliant 
and gallant court, than they at present prove. No, 
I espouse no such dangerous opinions, but endeavor, 
by gentle persuasion and courtly arguments, to lead 
their precious souls nearer to the heaven they so 
well merit, and which it were scarce impious to say, 
they will so rarely become." 

" This may be well for the towering fancies of thy 
French imaginations, but our slower German minds 
must be dealt with differently. By the mass! I 
would give little for the success of the confessor, 
that should deal only in persuasive and gentle dis 
course ! Here, we throw out manifold hints of dam 
nation, in plainer speech." 

" I condemn no usage on speculation, Benedic 
tine ; but truly this directness of condemnation would 
be thought indecorous in our more refined presences. 
As yet, thou wilt acknowledge, we are less tainted 
with heresies than thy northern courts." 

Here the deep voice of Emich, who had recov. 


ered a little self-command, again drowned the by 
play of the subordinates. 

" We are not children, most reverend Bonifacius," 
he resumed, " to irritate ourselves with names. 
That I have been denied the honors and rights of 
my birth and line, for one come of no direct descent, 
is admitted ; but let it be forgotten. Thou art wel 
come to my board, and there is no dignitary of the 
church, or of thy brotherhood, that I esteem more 
than thee and thine, within a hard ride of these 
towers. Let us be friends, holy Abbot, and drink to 
our loving graces." 

" Count Emich, I pledge thee, and pray for thee, 
as thou meritest. If there have been misunder 
standings between our convent and thy house, they 
have come of the misguiding of the devil. We are 
a peaceful community, and one given more to 
prayer and a just hospitality, than to any grasping 
desire to enrich our coffers." 

" On these points we will not dwell, father, for it 
is not easy for baron and abbot, layman and priest, 
to see at all times with the same eyes. I would that 
this question of authority in Deurckheim were fairly 
disposed of, that there might always be good neigh 
borhood in the valley. Our hills shut in no wide 
plain, like yon of the river, that we must needs turn 
the little level land we have into a battle-ground. 
By the mass, most holy Abbot, but thou wouldst do 
well to dismiss the Elector s troops, and trust this 
matter between us, to gentle and friendly argu 

" If it were the last prayer I uttered, before pass 
ing into the fruition of a self-denying and holy life, 
princely Emich, thy wish should not want support ! 
Have we not often professed a willingness to refer 
the question to the Holy Father, or any other high 
church authority, that can fittingly take cognizance 


of so knotty a point. Less than this arbitration 
would scarce become our apostolic mission." 

" God s truth ! mein Herr Wilhelm, but ye are 
too grasping for those who mortify the flesh ! Is it 
meet, I ask ye, that a goodly number of valiant and 
pains-taking burghers should be led by shaven crowns, 
in the day of strife, in fair and foul, evil and good, 
like so many worthless women, who, having lived in 
the idleness and vanities of gossip and backbiting, 
are fain to hope that their sex s sins may be hid be 
neath a monk s frock 1 Give me up, therefore, this 
question of Deurckheim, and certain other rights 
that might be fairly written out, and the saints in 
Paradise shall not live in more harmony than we of 
the Jaegerthal." 

" Truly, Lord Emich, the means of fitting us for 
the heavenly state thou namest have not been for 
gotten, since thou hast made a purgatory of the val- 
icy these many years " 

" By the mass, priest, thou again pushest thy re 
marks beyond discreet speech! In what manner 
have I done aught to bring this scandal on the neigh 
borhood, beyond a mere forethought to mine own 
interest. Hast thou not opened thy abbey-gates to 
receive armed and irreligious men? are not thy 
ears hourly wounded by rude oaths, and thy eyes 
affronted by sights that should be thought unseemly 
in a sanctuary? Nay, that thou mayest not suppose 
I am ignorant of thy hidden intentions, do not the 
armed bands of Duke Friedrich lie at watch, this 
very moment, within thy cloisters ?" 

" We have a just caution of our rights and of the 
church s honor," answered Bonifacius, who scarce 
endeavored to conceal the contemptuous smile the 
question excited. 

" Believe me, Abbot of Limburg, so far from be 
ing the enemy of our holy religion, I am its sworn 
friend ; else should I long since have joined the pros- 


elytes of this brother Luther, and have done theo 
harm openly." 

" Twere better than to pray at our altars by day, 
and to plot their fall at night." 

" I swear by the life of the Emperor that thou 
urgest me too far, haughty priest !" 

The chmor created by the Abbe and Father Sieg 
fried here caused the two principal speakers to di 
rect their attention, for the moment, to the second 
ary combatants. From a courtly dispute, the argu 
ment had got to be so confused and warm, between 
the latter, that each raised his voice in a vain en 
deavor to drown that of his adversary. It was but 
an instant, oefore the whirling senses of M. Latouche, 
who had only maintained his present place in the 
debauch by fraud, gave way to so rude an assault, 
and he staggered to a settee, where, gesticulating 
wildly, he soon sunk at his length, unable to lift his 
head. Father Siegfried witnessed the retreat of his 
mercurial foe with a grin of exultation ; then he 
raised a ferocious shout, which, coming from lungs 
that had so lately chanted to the honor of God, caus 
ed the young Berchthold to shudder with horror. 
But the glazed eyes of the monk, and his failing 
countenance, betrayed an inability to endure more. 
After staring wildly about him, with the unmeaning 
idiotcy of a drunkard, he settled himself in his chair, 
and closed his eyes in the heavy sleep that nature 
unwillingly furnishes to those who abuse her gifts. 

The Abbot and the Count witnessed the manner 
in which their respective seconds were thus put hors 
de combat, in sullen silence. Their growing warmth, 
and the feelings excited by the mention of their 
several grievances, had insensibly drawn their atten 
tion from the progress of the contest, but each now 
regained a certain glimpse of its nature and of its 
results ; the recollection served to recall the temper 
of both, for they were too well practised in thes 


scenes, not to understand the value of presence of 
mind in maintaining the comm and of their faculties. 

" Our brother Siegfried hath yielded to the frail 
ties of nature, noble Emich," resumed Boniface, 
smiling as placidly on his remaining companion, as 
flushed features and a heated eye would permit. 
" The flesh of priest can endure no more than that 
of layman, else would he have seen thy flasks drain 
ed of their last drop, for better intention never filled 
grateful heart, in doing honor to the gifts of Provi 

" Ay, thou passest thy debauches to the account 
of this subtilty, while we of the sword, Master 
Abbot, sin to-night, and ask forgiveness to-morrow, 
without other pretence than our pleasures. But the 
hood of a monk is a mask, and he who wears it 
thinks he hath a right to the benefit of the disguise. 
I would I knew, to a boddice, the number of 
burghers wives thou hast shrived since Corpus 
Domini !" 

" Jest not with the secrets of the confessional, 
Count Emich ; the subject is too sacred for profane 
tongues. There has been bitter penance for greater 
than thou !" 

"Nay, mistake me not, holy Abbot," returned 
the baron, hurriedly crossing himself ; " but your 
bold talkers say there is discontent in Deurckheim 
on this point, and I deem it friendly to communi 
cate the accusations of the enemy. This is a mo 
ment in which our German monks are in danger 
for, in sooth, thy brother of Erfurth is no drivellei 
in his cry against Rome." 

The eye of Father Boniface flashed fire, for none 
are so quick to meet, or so violent to resent at 
tacks, on what they consider their rights, as those 
who have long been permitted to enjoy monopolies 
however frail or unjust may be the tenure of theii 


" In thy heart, rude Emich, thou clingest to this 
heresy !" he said : " Beware, in what manner thou 
castest the weight of thy example and name into 
the scale, against the commands of God and the 
authority of the church! As for this Luther, a 
backsliding wretch, that unquiet ambition and love 
for a professed but misguided nun, having urged to 
rebellion, the devils are rejoicing in his iniquity, and 
imps of darkness stand ready to riot in his final and 
irretrievable fall." 

" By the mass ! father, to a plain soldier it seem- 
eth better to wive the sister honestly, than to give 
all this scandal in Deurckheim, and otherwise to do 
violence to the peace of families on the fair plains 
of the Palatinate. If brother Luther hath done no 
more, than thou sayest here, he hath fairly cheated 
Satan, which is what thy community did^ of old, 
when it got the evil spirit to aid in raising thy 
chapel, and then, with no great regard to a debtor s 
obligations, sent him away penniless." 

" Were the truth known, Emich, I fear it would 
be found that thou hast faith in this silly legend !" 

" If thou hast not outwitted the devil, priest, it 
hath been that his prudence hath kept him from bar 
gaining with those he knows to be his betters in cun 
ning. By the rood ! twas a bold spirit that would 
grapple, wit to wit, with the monks of Limburg !" 

Disdain kept the Abbot from answering, for he 
was too superior to vulgar tradition to feel even re 
sentment at an imputation of this kind. His host 
perceived that he was losing ground, and he began 
to see, by the manner in which his senses were 
slowly receding, that he was in imminent danger of 
forfeiting the important stake that now depended 
wholly on his powers of endurance. The Abbot 
had a well-earned reputation of having the strongest 
head of all the churchmen of the Palatinate, and 
Count Emich, who was nowise wanting in physicaJ 


excellence of this sort, began to feel that species of 
failing which is commonly the forerunner, as it is 
often the cause, of defeat. He swallowed bumper 
after bumper, with a reckless desire to overwhelm 
his antagonist, without thought of the inroads that 
he was producing on his own faculties. Bonifacius, 
who saw and felt his superiority, willingly indulged 
his antagonist in this feverish desire to drive the 
struggle to a premature issue, and several glasses 
were taken in a sort of sullen defiance, without a 
syllable issuing from the lips of either. In this 
strait, the Count turned his swimming eyes towards 
his attendants, in a vague hope that they who served 
him so faithfully on ordinary occasions, might aid 
him in the present desperate emergency. 

Young Berchthold Hintermayer stood near his 
lord, in ^respectful attendance on his pleasure, for 
habit prevented him from withdrawing without an 
order. Enough had fallen from the parties in this 
singular contest to let him into the secret of its ob 
ject. He appeared to understand the appeal, and 
advancing to do the office of cup-bearer, a duty 
that in truth required some such interference, for he 
who should have discharged it had been too dili 
gently imitating those at the board, to be able any 
longer to acquit himself with propriety of his func 

" If my Lord Abbot would but relieve the passing 
time," said Berchthold, as he poured out the wine, 
"by descanting more at large on this heresy, he 
might be the instrument of saving a doubting soul ; 
I freely confess, that for one, I find much reason to 
distrust the faith of my fathers." 

This was attacking the Abbot on his weakest, not 
to say his only vulnerable, point 

" Thou shalt smart for this, bold boy !" he cried, 
striking the table with a clenched fist. " Thou har- 
borest heresies, unfledged and paltry reasoner on 


apostolic missions ! Tis well tis well the impu 
dent avowal is noted !" 

Emich made a sign of gratitude, for in his rage 
the priest took a heavy draught, unconscious of 
what he was about. 

"Nay, my Lord, the most reverend Abbot will 
pardon imprudent speech in one little gifted in 
knowledge of this sort. Were it to strike a wild- 
boar, or to stop a roe-buck, or haply to do harm to 
my master s enemies, this hand might prove of some 
account ; but is it matter of fair surprise that we of 
simple wit should be confounded, when the most 
learned of Germany are at a loss what to believe 1 
I have heard it said, that Master Luther made noble 
answers in all the councils and wise bodies, in which 
he hath of late appeared." 

He spoke with the tongue of Lucifer !" roared 
the Abbot, fairly frothing with the violence of un 
governable rage. " Whence cometh this new and 
late-discovered religion ! Of what stock and root is 
it 1 Why hath it been so long hid, and where is its 
early history 1 Doth it mount to Peter and Paul, or 
is it the invention of modern arrogance and rank 
conceit ?" 

" Nay, father, the same might be asked of Rome 
itself, before Rome knew an apostle. The tree is 
not less a tree after it hath been trimmed of its de 
cayed branches, though it may be more comely." 

Father Bonifacius was both acute and learned, 
and, under ordinary circumstances, even the monk 
of Wittenberg might have found him a stubborn and 
subtle casuist ; but in his actual condition, the most 
sophistical remark, if it had but the aspect of reason, 
was likely to inflame him. Thus assailed, therefore, 
he exhibited an awful picture of the ferocity of hu 
man passions when brutalized by indulgence. His 
eyes seemed starting from his head, his lips quiverea, 
and his tongue refused its functions. He was now 


in the predicament, in which the Count had so lal y 
stood; and, though he foresaw the consequen* ,s 
with the desperation of an inebriated man, he sou ^ht 
the renewal of his forces in the very agent which 
had undermined them. Count Emich himself was 
past intelligible utterance, but eloquence not being 
his strongest arm, he still maintained sufficient com 
mand of his physical powers to continue the conflict. 
He flourished his hand in defiance, and muttered 
words that seemed to breathe hatred and scorn. In 
this manner did a noble of an illustrious and princely 
house, and a mitred prelate of the church, stand at 
bay, with little other consciousness of the existence 
of the nobler faculties of their being, than that con 
nected with the common mercenary object which 
had induced this trial of endurance. 

" The church s malediction on ye all !" Boniface 
at length succeeded in uttering : then falling back 
in his elbowed and well-cushioned chair, he yielded 
his faculties to the sinister influence of the liquor he 
had swallowed. 

When Emich of Leiningen witnessed the over 
throw of his last antagonist, a gleam of intelligence 
and triumph shot from beneath his shaggy brows. 
By a desperate effort he raised himself, and stretch 
ing forth an arm, he gained possession of the deed 
by which the community of Limburg formally re 
leased its claims upon the products of the disputed 
vineyards. Arising, with the air of one accustomed 
to command even in his cups, he signed for his for 
ester to approach, and aided by his young and ner 
vous arm, he tottered from the room, leaving the 
banqueting-hall, like a deserted field, a revolting 
picture of human infirmity in its degradation and 

As the Count fell heavily upon his couch, clad as 
he had been at table, he shook the parchment 
towards his young attendant, till the folds rattled 


Then closing his eyes, his deep and troubled breath 
ing soon announced, that the victor of this debauch 
lay like the vanquished, unconscious, feverish, and 

Thus terminated the well-known debauch of Har- 
tenburg, a feat of physical endurance on the part 
of the stout baron who prevailed, that gained him 
little less renown among the boon companions of 
the Palatinate, than he would have reaped from a 
victory in the field ; and which, strange as it may 
now appear, derogated but little from any of the 
qualities of the vanquished. 


And from the latticed gallery came a chant 
Of psalms, most saint-like, most angelical, 
Verse after verse sung out most holily." 


THE succeeding day was the Sabbath. The 
morning of the weekly festival was always an 
nounced to the peasants of the Jaegerthal with the 
usual summons to devotion. The matin bell had 
been heard on the abbey walls, even before the light 
penetrated to the bottom of the deep vale ; and all 
the pious had bent, in common, wherever the sounds 
happened to reach their ears, in praise and thanks 
giving. But as the hours wore on, a more elevated 
display of Roman worship was prepared in the 
high mass, a ceremony addressed equally to the 
feelings and the senses. 

The sun was fairly above the hills, and the sea 
son bland to seduction. The domestic cattle, re 
lieved from their weekly toil, basked against the 
hill-side, ruminating in contentment, and filled with 


the quiet pleasures of their instinct. Children gam 
boiled before the cottage doors; the husbandman 
loitered, in the habiliments that had borne the fashions 
of the Haard through many generations, regarding 
the silent growth of his crops, and the housewife 
hurried from place to place, in the excitement of 
simple domestic enjoyment. The month was the 
most grateful of the twelve, and well filled with 
hopes. The grass had reached its height, and was 
throwing out its exuberance, the corn was filling 
fast, and the vine began to give forth its clusters. 

In the midst of this scene of rural tranquillity, the 
deep-toned bells of the abbey called the flock to its 
usual fold. Long practice had made the brother 
hood of Limburg expert in all the duties that were 
necessary to the earthly administration of their func 
tions. Even the peals of the bells were regulated 
and skilful. Note mournfully succeeded note, and 
there was not a silent dell, for miles, into which the 
solemn call did not penetrate. Bells were heard too 
from Deurckheim, and even from the wide plain be 
yond ; but none rose fuller upon the air, or came so 
sweet and melancholy to the ear, as those which 
hung in the abbey towers. 

Obedient to the summons, there was a gathering 
of all in the valley towards the gate of Limburg. 
A crowd appeared also in the direction of the gorge, 
for devotion, superstition, or curiosity, never failed 
to attract a multitude on these occasions, to witness 
mass in that celebrated conventual chapel. Among 
the latter came equally the sceptical and the believ 
ing, the young and the old, the fair and her who 
deemed it prudent to shade a matronly countenance 
with the veil, the idle, the half-converted follower 
of Luther, and the lover of music. It was custom 
ary for one of the brothers to preach, when mass 
was ended; and Limburg had many monks that were 


skilled in the subtleties of the times, and some even 
who had names for eloquence. 

With a management and coquetry that enter into 
most human devices that are intended to act on our 
feelings, especially in matters that it is not thought 
safe to confide too much to naked reason, the peals of 
the bells were continued long, with a view to effect 
As group after group arrived, the court of the abbey 
slowly filled, until there appeared a congregation 
sufficiently numerous to gratify the self-love of even 
a clerical star of our own times. There was much 
grave salutation among the different dignitaries that 
were here assembled, for of all those who doff the 
cap in courtesy, perhaps the German is the most 
punctilious and respectful. As the neighboring city 
was fully represented in this assembly of the reli 
gious and curious, there was also a profitable display 
of the duties that are due to station. A herald 
might have obtained many useful hints, had he been 
there to note the different degrees of simple homage 
that were paid, from the Burgomaster to the Bailiff. 
Among the variety of idle and ill-digested remarks 
that are lavished on the American people and their 
institutions, it is a received pleasantry to joke on 
their attachment to official dignities. But he who 
has not only seen, but observed both his own coun 
trymen and strangers, will have had numberless oc 
casions to remark that this, like most similar stric 
tures, is liable to the imputation of vapidity, and of 
being proof of a narrow observation. The func 
tionary that is literally a servant of the people, 
whatever may be his dispositions, can never triumph 
over his masters ; and, though it be an honest and 
commendable ambition to wish to be so distinguished, 
we need only examine the institutions to see that 
in this, as in most other similar circumstances, there 
Is no strict analogy between ourselves and European 
nations. The remark has probably been made, be- 


cause a respect for official authority has been found 
among us, when there was the expectation, and pos 
sibly the wish, to find anarchy. 

At the high mass of Limburg there was more 
ceremony observed in ushering the meanest village 
dignitary to his place in the church, than w r ould be 
observed in conducting the head of this great re 
public to the high station he occupies; and care was 
had, by an agent of the convent, to see that no one 
should approach the altar of the Lord of the Uni 
verse, without his receiving the deference he might 
claim in virtue of his temporal rank ! Here, where 
all appear in the temple as they must appear in their 
graves, equals in dependence on divine support as 
they are equals in frailty, it will not be easy to un 
derstand the hardihood of sophistry which thus 
teaches humility and penitence with the tongue, and 
invites to pride and presumption in the practice ; and 
which, when driven to a reason for its conduct, de 
fends itself against the accusation of inconsistency, 
by recriminating the charge of envy ! 

There had been a suitable display of ceremony 
when several functionaries of Deurckheim appeared 
but the strongest manifestation of respect was re 
served for a burgher, who did not enter the gates, 
until the people were assembled in the body of the 
church. This personage, a man whose hair was 
just beginning to be gray, and whose solid, vigorous 
frame denoted full health and an easy life, came in 
the saddle ; for at the period of which we write, 
there was a bridle path to the portal of Limburg. 
He was accompanied by a female, seemingly his 
spouse, who rode an ambling nag, bearing on the 
crupper a crone that clung to her well-formed waist, 
with easy, domestic familiarity, but like one unused 
to her seat. A fair-haired, rosy girl sat the pillion 
of the father, and a serving-man, in a species of 
official livery, closed the cavalcade. 


Sundry of the more substantial citizens o t Deurck- 
fceim hastened to the reception of this little party, 
for it was Heinrich Frey, with Meta, her mother, 
and Use, that came unexpectedly to the mass of 
Limburg. The affluent and flourishing citizen was 
ushered to the part of the church or chapel, where 
especial chairs were reserved for such casual visits 
of the neighboring functionaries, or for any noble 
that devotion, or accident, might lead to worship at 
the abbey s altars. 

Heinrich Frey was a stout, hale, obstinate, sturdy 
burgher, in whom prosperity had a little cooled be 
nevolence, but who, had he escaped the allurements 
of office and the recollection of his own success, 
might have passed through life, as one that was 
wanting in neither modesty nor humanity. He was, 
in short, on a diminished scale, one of those ex 
amples of desertion from the ranks of mankind to 
the corps d elite of the lucky, that we constantly 
witness among the worldly and fortunate. While a 
youth, he had been sufficiently considerate for the 
burthens and difficulties of the unhappy ; but a mar 
riage with a small heiress, and subsequent successes, 
had gradually brought him to a view of things, that 
was more in unison with his own particular inter 
ests, than it was either philosophical or christian-like. 
He was a firm believer in that dictum which says 
none but the wealthy havr sufficient interest in so 
ciety to be intrusted with it control, though his own 
instinct might have detected the sophistry, since he 
was daily vacillating between opposing principles, 
just as they happened to affect his own particular 
concerns. Heinrich Frey gave freely to the men 
dicant, and to the industrious ; but when it came to 
be a question of any serious melioration of the lot 
of either, he shook his head, in a manner to imply 
a mysterious political economy, and uttered shrewd 
remarks on the bases of society, and of things as 


they were established. In short, he lived in an age 
when Germany, and indeed all Christendom, was 
much agitated by a question that was likely to un 
settle not only the religion of the day, but divers 
other vested interests ; and he might have been term 
ed the chief of the conservative party, in his own 
particular circle. These qualities, united to his known 
wealth ; a reputation for high probity, which was 
founded on the belief that he was fully able to re 
pair any pecuniary wrong he might happen to com 
mit; a sturdy maintenance of his own opinions, 
that passed with the multitude for the consistency 
of rectitude ; and a perfect fearlessness in deciding 
against all those who had not the means of disputing 
his decrees, had procured for him the honor of being 
the first Burgomaster of Deurckheim. 

Were the countenance a certain index of the 
qualities of the mind, a physiognomist might have 
been at a loss to discover the motives which had in 
duced Ulricka Hailtzinger, not only the fairest but 
the wealthiest maiden of the town, to unite herself 
in marriage with the man we have just delineated. 
A mild, melancholy, blue eye, that retained its lustre 
in despite of forty years, a better outline of features 
than is common to the region in which she dwelt, 
and a symmetry of arm and bust that, on the other 
hand, are rather peculiar to the natives of Germany, 
still furnished sufficient evidence of the beauty for 
which she must have been distinguished in early 
life. In addition to these obvious and more vulgar 
attractions, the matronly partner of Heinrich had 
an expression of feminine delicacy and intelligence, 
of elevated views, and even of mysterious aspira 
tions, which rendered her a woman that a nice ob 
server of nature might have loved to study ana 
have studied to love. 

In personal appearance, Meta was a copy of her 
mother, engrafted on the more ruddy health and less 


abstracted nabits of the father Her character will 
be sufficiently developed as we proceed in the tale. 
We commit Ilse to the reader s imagination, which 
will readily conceive the sort of attendant that has 
been introduced. 

The Herr Heinrich did not take possession of his 
customary post before the high altar, without caus 
ing the stir and excitement among the simple peas 
ants of the Jaegerthal, and the truant Deurckheimers 
who were present, that became his condition in life. 
But even city importance cannot predominate for 
ever in the house of God, and the bustle gradually 
subsiding, expectation began to take precedency of 
civic rank. 

The Abbey of Limburg stood high among the 
religious communities of the Rhine, for its internal 
decorations, its wealth, and its hospitality. The 
chapel was justly deemed a rare specimen of mo 
nastic taste, nor was it wanting in most of those or 
naments and decorations, that render the superior 
buildings, devoted to the service of the Church of 
Rome, so imposing to the senses, and so pleasing to 
the admirers of solemn effect. The building was 
vast, and, as prevailed throughout that region and 
in the century of which we write, sombre. It had 
numerous altars, rich in marbles and pictures, each 
celebrated in the Palatinate for the kind mediation 
of the particular saint to whom it was dedicated, 
and each loaded with the votive offerings of the 
suppliant, or of the grateful. The walls and the 
nave were painted al fresco, not indeed with the 
pencil of Raphael, or Buonorotti, but creditably, 
and in a manner to heighten the beauty of the place. 
The choir was carved in high relief, after a fashion 
much esteemed, and that was admirably executed in 
the middle states of Europe, no less than in Italy, 
and whole flocks of cherubs were seen poising on 
.he wing around the organ, the altar, and the tombs. 


The latter were numerous, and indicated, by their 
magnificence, that the bodies of those who had en 
joyed the world s advantages, slept within the hal 
lowed precincts. 

At length a door, communicating with the clois 
ters, opened, and the monks appeared, walking in 
procession. At their head came the Abbot, wearing 
his mitre, and adorned with the gorgeous robes of 
his ecclesiastical office. Two priests, decorated 
for the duties of the altar, followed, and then suc 
ceeded the professed and the assistants, in pairs. 
The whole procession swept through the aisles, in 
stately silence ; and, after making the tour of most 
of the church, paying homage and offering prayers 
at several of the most honored altars, it passed into 
the choir. Father Bonifacius was seated on his 
episcopal throne, and the rest of the brotherhood 
occupied the glossy stalls reserved for such occa 
sions. During the march of the monks, the organ 
breathed a low accompaniment, and, as they be 
came stationary, its last strain died in the vaulted 
roof. At this moment the clattering of horses hoofs 
was audible without, causing the startled and 
uneasy priests to suspend the mass. The rattling 
of steel came next, and then the heavy tread of 
armed heels was heard on the pavement of the 
church itself. 

Emich of Hartenburg came up the principal aisle, 
with the steady front of one confident of his power, 
and claiming deference. He was accompanied by 
his guests, the Knight of Rhodes and Monsieur La- 
touche, while young Berchthold Hintermayer kept 
at his elbow, like one accustomed to be in close at 
tendance. A small train of unarmed dependants 
brought up the rear. There was a seat of honor, 
in the choir itself, and near the master altar, to" 
which it was usual to admit princes and nobles of 
high consideration. Passing through the crowd, 


that had collected at the railing of the choir, the 
Count inclined towards one of the lateral aisles, and 
was soon face to face with the Abbot. The latter 
arose, and slightly recognized the presence of his 
guest, while the whole brotherhood imitated his ex 
ample, though with greater respect; for, as we 
have said, it was usual to pay this homage to 
worldly rank, even in the temple. Emich seated 
himself, with a scowl on his visage, while his two 
noble associates found seats of honor near. Berch- 
thold stood at hand. 

An inexperienced eye could have detected no 
outward signs of his recent defeat, in the exterior 
Df Wilhelm of Venloo. His muscles had already 
regained their tone, and his entire countenance its 
usual expression of severe authority, a quality for 
which it was more remarkable than for any lines 
of mortification or of thought. He glanced at the 
victor, and then, by a secret sign, communicated 
with a lay brother. At this moment the mass com 

Of all the nations of Christendom, this, compared 
with its numbers, is the least connected with the 
Church of Rome. The peculiar religious origin of 
the people, their habits of examination and mental 
independence, and their prejudices (for the Protest 
ant is no more free from this failing than the Catho 
lic,) are likely to keep them long separated from 
any policy, whether of church or state, that exacts 
faith without investigation, or obedience without the 
right to remonstrate. An opinion is sedulously dis 
seminated in the other hemisphere, that busy agents 
are rapidly working changes in this respect, and a 
powerful party is anxiously anticipating great eccle 
siastical and political results from the return of the 
American nation to the opinions of their ancestors 
of the middle ages. Were the fact so, it would 
give us little concern, for we do not believe s*I- 


ration to be the peculiar province of sects ; but, had 
we any apprehensions of the consequences of such 
a conversion, they would not be excited by the acci 
dental accumulations of emigrants in towns, or on 
the public works in which the country is so actively 
engaged. We believe that where one native Pro 
testant becomes a Catholic in America, ten emigrant 
Catholics drop quietly into the ranks of the prevail 
ing sects ; and, without at all agitating the point of 
which is the gainer or the loser by the change, we 
shall proceed to describe the manner of the mass, 
as a ceremony, that ninety-nine in a hundred of our 
readers have never had, nor probably ever will 
have, an opportunity of witnessing. 

There is no appeal to the feelings of man, which 
has given rise to opinions so decidedly at vari 
ance as those which are entertained of the Roman 
ritual. To one description of Christians, these cere 
monies appear to be vain mummeries, invented to 
delude, and practised for unjustifiable ends ; while, 
to another, they contain all that is sublime and im 
posing in human worship. As is usual in most 
cases of extreme opinions, the truth would seem to 
lie between the two. The most zealous Catholic 
errs when he would maintain the infallibility of all 
who minister at the altar, or when he overlooks the 
slovenly and irreverent manner in which the most 
holy offices are so frequently perfoimed ; and, 
surely, the Protestant who quits the temple, in which 
justice has been done to the formula of this church, 
without perceiving that there is deep and sublime 
devotion in its rites, has steeled his feelings against 
the admission of every sentiment in favor of a sect 
that he is willing to proscribe. We belong to 
neither class, and shall, therefore, endeavor to re 
present things as they have been seen, not disguising 
or affecting a single emotion because our fathers 


Happened to take refuge in this western wor/d, to 
set up altars of a different shade of faith. 

The interior of the Abbey-church of Limburg, as 
has just been stated, was renowned in Germany for 
its magnificence. Its vaulted roof was supported 
by many massive pillars, and ornamented with 
scriptural stories, by the best pencils of that region. 
The grand altar was of marble, richly embellished 
with agate, containing as usual a labored represent 
ation of the blessed Mary and her deified child. A 
railing of exquisite workmanship and richly gilded, 
excluded profane feet from this sanctified spot, 
which, in addition to its fixtures, was now glittering 
with vessels of gold and precious stones, being dec 
orated for the approaching mass. The officiating 
priests \vore vestments stiffened with golden em 
broidery, while the inferior attendants were as 
usual clad in white, and bound with scarfs of purple. 

Upon this scene of gorgeous and elaborate splen 
dor, in which the noble architecture united with the 
minute preparations of the service, to lead the spirit 
to lofty contemplations, the chant of the monks, and 
the tones of the organ, broke in a deep and startling 
appeal to the soul. Lives dedicated to the prac 
tices of their community, had drilled the brother 
hood into perfection, and scarce a note issued 
among the vaults that was not attuned to the de 
sired effect. Trombones, serpents, and viols, lent 
their aid to increase the solemn melody of powerful 
masculine voices, which were so blended with the 
wind instrument as to comprise but one deep, grand, 
and grave sound of praise. Count Emich turned 
on his seat, clenching the handle of his sword, as if 
the clamor of the trumpet were in his ears : then 
his unquiet glance met that of the Abbot, and his 
chin fell upon a hand. As the service proceeded, 
the zeal of the brotherhood seemed to increase, and, 
as it was afterwards remarked, on no occasion had 


the mass of Limburg, at all times known for its 
power in music, been so remarkable for its strong 
and stirring influence. Voice rolled above voice, 
in a manner that must be heard to be understood, 
and there were moments when the tones of the in 
struments, full and united as they were, appeared 
drowned in the blending of a hundred human 
aspirations. From the deepest of one of these sol 
emn peals there arose a strain, at whose first tone 
all other music was hushed. It was a single human 
voice, of that admixture of the male and female 
tones which seems nearest allied to the supernatu 
ral, being in truth, a contr alto of great compass, 
roundness, and sweetness. Count Emich started, 
for, when these heavenly strains broke upon his 
ear, they seemed to float in the vault above the 
choir ; nor could he, as the singer was concealed, 
assure himself of the delusion, while the solo lasted. 
He dropped his sword, and gazed about him, foi 
the first time that morning, with an expression of 
human charity. The lips of young Berchthold 
parted in admiration, and as he just then met the 
blue eye of Meta, there was an exchange of gentle 
feeling in that quiet and secret glance. In the 
mean time, the chant proceeded. The single un 
earthly voice that had so stirred the spirits of the 
listeners ceased, and a full chorus of the choir 
concluded the hymn. 

The Count of Leiningen drew a breath so heavy 
that it was audible to Bonifacius. The latter suf 
fered his countenance to unbend, and, as in the case 
of the youthful pair, the spirit of concord appeared 
to soothe the tempers of these fierce rivals. But 
here commenced the ritual of the mass. The rapid 
utterance of the officiating priest, gesticulations 
which lost their significance by being blended and 
indistinct, and prayers in a tongue that defeated 
their object, by involving instead of rendering tho 


medium of thought noble and clear, united to weak 
en the effect produced by the music. Worship lost 
its character of inspiration, by assuming that of 
business, neither attracting the imagination, influ 
encing the feelings, nor yet sufficiently convincing 
the reason. Abandoning all these persuasive means, 
too much was left to the convictions of a naked and 
settled belief. 

Emich of Hartenburg gradually resumed his re 
pulsive mien, and the effect of all that he had so late 
ly felt was lost in cold indifference to words that 
he did not comprehend. Even young Berchthold 
sought the eye of Meta less anxiously, and both the 
Knight of Rhodes and Monsieur Latouche gazed 
listlessly towards the throng grouped before the 
railing of the choir. In this manner did the service 
commence and terminate. There was another 
hymn, and a second exhibition of the power of 
music, though with an effect less marked than that 
which had been produced when the listeners were 
taken by surprise. 

Against a column, near the centre of the church, 
was erected a pulpit. A monk rose from his stall, 
at the close of the worship, and, passing through 
the crowd, ascended its stairs like one about to 
preach. It was Father Johan, a brother known for 
the devotedness of his faith and the severity of his 
opinions. The low receding forehead, the quiet but 
glassy eye, and the fixedness of the inferior members 
of the face, might readily have persuaded a phys 
iognomist that he beheld a heavy enthusiast. The 
language and opinions of the preacher did not deny 
the expectations excited by his exterior. He painted, 
in strong and ominous language, the dangers of the 
sinner, narrowed the fold of the saved within meta 
physical and questionable limits, and made fiequent 
appeals to the fears and to the less noble passions 
of his audience. While the greater number in the 


church kept aloof, listening indifferently, or gazing 
at the monuments and other rich decorations of the 
place, a knot of kindred spirits clustered around the 
pillar that supported the preacher s desk, deeply 
sympathizing in all his pictures of pain and desola 

The sharp, angry, and denunciatory address of 
Father Johan was soon ended ; and, as he re-entered 
the choir, the Abbot arose and retired to the clois 
ters, followed by most of the brotherhood. But 
neither the Count of Hartenburg, nor any of his 
train, seemed disposed to quit the church so soon. 
An air of expectation appeared, also, to detain most 
of those in the body of the building. A monk, to 
wards whom many longing eyes had been cast, 
yielded to the general and touching appeal, and 
quitting his stall, one of high honor, he took the 
place just vacated by Father Johan. 

This movement was no sooner made, than the 
name of Father Arnolph, the Prior, or the imme 
diate spiritual governor of the community, was 
buzzed among the people. Emich arose, and, ac 
companied by his friends, took a station near the 
pulpit, while the dense mass of uplifted and interest 
ed faces, that filled the middle aisle, proclaimed the 
interest of the congregation. There was that in 
the countenance and air of Father Arnolph to justify 
this plain demonstration of sympathy. His eye was 
mild and benevolent, his forehead full, placid, and 
even, and the whole character of his face was that 
of winning philanthropy. To the influence of this 
general and benevolent expression, must be added 
evident signs of discipline, much thought, and meek 

The spiritual part of such a man was not likely 
to belie the exterior. His doctrine, like that of the 
divine being he served, was charitable and full 
of love. Though he spoke of the terrors of judg- 


merit, it was with grief rather than with menace : 
and it was when dwelling on the persuasive and 
attractive character of faith, that he was most 
earnest and eloquent. Again Emich found his secret 
intentions shaken, and his frown relaxed to gleam 
ings of sympathy and interest. The eye of the 
preacher met that of the stern baron, and, without 
making an alarming change of manner, he continu 
ed, as it were, by a natural course of thought 
" Such is the church in its purity, my hearers, let 
the errors, the passions, or the designs of man per 
vert it in what manner they may. The faith I 
preach is of God, and it partakes of the godlike 
qualities of his divine essence. He who would im- 
oute the sins of its mistaken performance to aught 
but his erring creatures, casts odium on that wnich 
is instituted for his own good ; and he who would 
do violence to its altars, lifts a hand against a work 
of omnipotence !" 

With these words in his ears, Emich of Harten- 
burg turned away, and passed musingly up the 


" Japhet, I cannot answer thee." 


THE Abbey of Limburg owed its existence and 
its rich endowments chiefly to the favor of an em 
peror of Germany. In honor of this great patron, 
an especial altar, and a gorgeous and elaborate 
tomb, had been erected. Similar honors had been 
also paid to the Counts of Leiningen, and to certain 
other noble families of the vicinity. These several 
altars were in black marble, relievdd by ornaments 


of white, and the tombs were decorated with such 
heraldic devices as marked the particular races of 
the different individuals. They stood apart from 
those already described in the principal church, in 
. sort of crypt, or semi-subterranean chapel, be 
neath the choir. Thither Count Emich held his way, 
when he quitted the column against which he had 
leaned, while listening to the sermon of Father Ar- 

The light of the upper church had that soft and 
melancholy tint, which is so peculiar and so orna 
mental to a Gothic edifice. It entered through high, 
narrow windows of painted glass, coloring all within 
with a hue that it was not difficult for the imagina 
tion to conceive had some secret connexion with the 
holy character of the place. The depth and the 
secluded position of the chapel rendered this light 
still more gloomy and touching in the crypt. When 
the Count reached the pavement, he felt its influence 
deeply, for few descended into that solemn and hal 
lowed vault without becoming sensible to the reli 
gious awe that reigned around. Emich crossed 
himself, and, as he passed before the altar reared by 
his race, he bent a knee to the mild and lovely fe 
male countenance that was there to represent the 
Mother of Christ. He thought himself alone, and 
he uttered a prayer ; for, though Emich of Lein- 
ingen was a man that rarely communed seriously 
with God, when exposed to worldly and deriding 
eyes, he had in his heart deep reverence for his 
power. As he arose, a movement at his elbow at 
tracted a look aside. 

"Ha! Thou here, Herr Priori" he exclaimed 
suppressing as much of his surprise as self-corn- 
mand enabled him to do with success ;, " Thou art 
swift in thy passage from the stall to the pulpit, and 
swifter from the pulpit to the chapel !" 

"We that are vowed to lives of monkish devo- 


tion, need to be often at all. Thou wert kneeling, 
Enrich, before the altar of thy race ?" 

" By St. Benedict, thy patron ! but thou hast, in 
good sooth, found me in some such act, holy father. 
A weakness came over me, on entering into this 
gloomy place, and I would fain do reverence to the 
spirits of those who have gone before me." 

" Callest thou the desire to pray a weakness 1 At 
what shrine could one of thy name worship more 
fittingly than at this, which has been reared and 
enriched by the devout of his own kindred ; or in 
what better mood canst thou look into thyself, and 
call upon divine aid, than in that thou hast men 
tioned ?" 

" Herr Prior, thou overlookest the occasion of my 
visit, which is to hear the Abbey mass, and not to 
confess and be shrived." 

" It is long since thou hast had the benefit of these 
sacred offices, Enrich I" 

" Thou hast done well in thy way, father, at the 
desk; and I question not that the burghers of 
Deurckheim and their gossips will do thee credit in 
their private discourses. Thy fame as a preacher 
is not of mean degree even now, and this effort of 
to-day would well-nigh gain thee a bishopric, were 
the women of our valley in the way of moving 
Rome. How fareth it with the most holy Abbot 
this morning, and with those two pillars of the com 
munity, the Fathers Siegfried and Cuno ?" 

" Thou sawest them in their places at the most 
holy mass." 

" Fore heaven ! but they are worthy companions ! 
Believe me, father, more honest boon associates do 
not dwell in our rnerry Palatinate, nor men that I 
love in a better fashion, according to their merits 
Did st hear, reverend Prior, of their visit to Harten- 
burg, and of their deeds in the flesh ?" 

"The humor of thy mind is quickly changed 


Herr Count, and pity tis twere thus. I came not 
here to listen to tales of excesses in thy hold, nor of 
any forgetfulness of those, who having sworn to 
better things, have betrayed that they are merely 

"Ay, and stout men, if any such dwell in the 
empire ! I prize my good name as another, or I 
would tell thee the number of vessels that my 
keeper of the cellar sweareth are no better than so 
many men-at-arms fallen in a rally or an onset." 

" This love of wine is the curse of our region and 
of the times. I would that none of the treacherous 
liquor should again enter the gates of Limburg !" 

" God s justice ! reverend Prior, thou wilt in 
sooth find some decrease of quantity in future," re 
turned Emich, laughing, " for the disputed vineyards 
have at last found a single, and, though it might 
better come from thee, as one that hath often looked 
into my interior, as it were, by confession, a worthy 
master. I pledge thee the honor of a noble, that 
not a flask of that which thou so contemnest shall 
ever again do violence to thy taste." 

The Count cast a triumphant glance at the monk, 
in the expectation, and possibly in the hope, that, 
notwithstanding his professions of moderation, some 
lurking signs of regret might betray themselves at 
this announcement of the convent s loss. But Fa 
ther Arnolph was what he seemed, a man devoted 
to the holy office he had assumed, and one but little 
influenced by worldly interests. 

" I understand thee, Emich," he said mildly, but 
unmoved. " This scandal was not wanting at such 
a moment, to bring obloquy upon a reverend and 
holy church, against which its enemies have been 
permitted to make rude warfare, for reasons that 
are concealed in the inscrutable mysteries of him 
who founded it." 

" Thou speakest in reason, monk, for, to say truth, 


yon fellow of Saxony, and his followers, who are 
any thing but few or weak, begin to move many in 
this quarter to doubts and disobedience. Thou must 
most stoutly hate this brother Luther in thy heart, 
father !" 

For the first time that day, the countenance of 
the Prior lost its even expression of benevolence. 
But the change was so imperceptible to a vulgar 
eye, as to escape the scrutiny of the Count ; and the 
feeling, a lingering remnant of humanity, was 
quickly mastered by one so accustomed to hold the 
passions in subjection. 

" The name of the schismatic hath troubled me !" 
returned the Prior, smiling mournfully at the con 
sciousness of his own weakness ; " I hope it has 
not been with a feeling of personal dislike. He 
stands on a frightful precipice, and from my soul do 
I pray, that not only he, but all the deluded that fol 
low in his dangerous track, may see their peril in 
time to retire unharmed !" 

" Father, thou speakest like one that wishest good 
to the Saxon rather than harm !" 

" I think I may say, the words do not belie the 

" Nay, thou forgettest the damnable heresies he 
practiseth, and overlooketh his motive ! Surely one 
that can thus sell soul and body for love of a wanton 
nun, hath little claim to thy charity !" 

There was a slight glow on the temples of Father 

" They have attributed to him this craven pas 
sion," he answered, " and they have tried to prove, 
;hat a mean wish to partake of- the pleasures of the 
world, lies at the bottom of his rebellion ; but I be 
lieve it not, and I say it not." 

" God s truth ! thou art worthy of thy holy office, 
Herr Prior, and I honor thy moderation. Were there 
more like thee among us, we should have a better 


neighborhood, and less meddling with the concerns 
of others. With thee, I see myself no such neces 
sity of his openly wiving the nun, for it is very pos 
sible to enjoy the gifts of life even under a cowl, 
should it be our fortune to wear it." 

The monk made no answer, for he perceived he 
had to do with one unequal to understanding his own 

" Of this we wLl say no more," he rejoined, after 
a brief and painful pause ; " let us look rather to 
thine own welfare. It is said, Count Emich, that 
thou meditatest evil to this holy shrine ; that am 
bition, and the longings of cupidity, have tempted 
thee to plot our abbey s fall, in order that none may 
stand between thine own baronial power and the 
throne of the Elector !" 

" Thou art less unwilling to form unkind opinions 
of thy nearest neighbor, than of that mortal enemy 
of the Church, Luther, it would appear, Herr Prior. 
What hast thou seen in me, that can embolden one 
of thy charity to hazard this accusation ?" 

" I do but hazard what all in our convent think 
and dread. Hast thou reflected well, Emich, of this 
sacrilegious enterprise, and of what may be its 
fruits ? Dost thou recall the objects for which 
these holy altars were reared, or the hand that laid 
the corner-stone of the edifice thou wouldst so pro 
fanely overthrow ?" 

" Look you, good Father Arnolph, there are two 
manners of riewing the erection of thy convent, 
and more especially of this identical church in 
which we stand. One of our traditions sayeth that 
the arch-knave himself had his trowel in thy ma 

" Thou art of too high lineage, of blood too no 
ble, and of intelligence too ripe, to credit the tale." 

" These are points in which I pretend not to dip 
too deeply. I am no scholar of Prague or Witten- 


berg, that thou shouldst put these questions so 
closely to me. It were well that the brotherhood 
had bethought itself of this imputation in season, 
that the question might have been settled, for or 
against, as justice needed, when the learned and 
great among our fathers were met at Constance, in 
grave and general council." 

Father Arnolph regarded his companion in se 
rious concern. He too well knew the deplorable 
ignorance, and the consequent superstition, in which 
even the great of his time were involved, to mani 
fest surprise ; but he also knew the power the other 
wielded sufficiently to foresee the evils of such a 
union between force and ignorance. Still it was 
not his present object to combat opinions that were 
only to be removed by time and study, if indeed 
they can ever be eradicated, when fairly rooted in 
the human mind. He pursued his immediate de 
sign, therefore, avoiding a discussion, which, at that 
moment, might prove worse than useless. 

" That the finger of evil mingles more or less 
with all things that come of human agency, may be 
true," he continued, taking care that the expression 
of his eye should neither awaken the pride, nor 
arouse the obstinacy of the noble " but when altars 
have been reared, and when the worship of the 
Most High God hath continued for ages, we have 
reason to hope that his holy spirit presideth in ma 
jesty and love around the shrines. Such hath been 
the case with Limburg, Count Emich : and doubt it 
not, we who stand here, holding this discourse, 
stand also in the immediate presence of that dread 
Being who created heaven and earth, who guideth 
our lives, and who will judge us in death !" 

" God help us, Herr Prior ! Thou hast already 
done thy office in the desk this day, and I see no 
occasion that thou shouldst doubly perform a func 
tion, that was so well acquitted at first. I like not 


the manner of being ushered, as it were unan 
nounced, into so dread a presence as this thou hast 
just proclaimed. Were it but the Elector Friedrich, 
Emich of Leiningen could not presume to this famil 
iarity, without some consultation as to its fitness." 

" In the eyes of the Being we mean, Electors and 
Emperors are equally indifferent. He loveth the 
meek, and the merciful, and the just, while he 
scourgeth them that deny his authority. But thou 
hast named thy feudal prince, and I will question 
thee in a manner suited to thy habits. Thou art, in 
truth, Emich of Leiningen, a noble of name in the 
Palatinate, and one known to be of long-established 
authority in these regions. Still art thou second, 
or even third, in worldly command, in this thy very 
country. The Elector and the Emperor both hold 
thee in check, and either is strong enough to 
destroy thee at pleasure, in thy vaunted hold of 

" To the last I yield the means, if thou wilt, worthy 
Prior" interrupted the Count "but for the first, 
he must needs dispose of his own pressing enemies, 
before he achieves this victory!" 

Father Arnolph understood the other s meaning, 
for it was no secret that Friedrich was, just then, so 
pressed as to sit on a tottering throne ; a circum 
stance that was known to have encouraged the long 
meditated designs of the Count of Hartenburg to get 
rid of a community, that thwarted his views, and 
diminished his local authority. 

" Forgetting the Elector, we will turn only to the 
Emperor, then," rejoined the Prior. "Thou be- 
lievest him to be in his palace, and remote from thy 
country, and certainly he hath here no visible force 
to restrain thy rebellious hand. "We will imagine 
that a family he protected nay, that he loved 
stood in the way of some of thy greedy projects, and 
that the tempter had persuaded thee it would be well 


to remove it, or to destroy with the strong hand. 
Art thou weak enough, Count Emich, to listen to 
such advice, when thou knowest that the arm of 
Charles is long enough to reach from his distant 
Madrid to the most remote corner of Germany, and 
that his vengeance would be as sure as it would be 
fearful r 

" It would be a bold warfare, Herr Prior, that of 
Emich of Leiningen against Charles Quintus ! Left 
to mine own humor, holy monk, I would rather 
choose another enemy." 

"And yet thou wouldst war with one mightier 
than he ! Thou raisest thy impotent arm, and thy 
audacious will, against thy God ! Thou wouldst 
despise his promises, profane his altars, nay, thou 
wouldst fain throw down the tabernacle that he hath 
reared ! Dost thou think that omnipotence will be a 
nerveless witness of this sin ; or that an eternal 
and benign wisdom will forget to punish ?" 

" By St. Paul ! thou puttest the matter altogether 
in thine own interest, Father Arnolph, for there is 
yet no proof that this Abbey of Limburg hath any 
such origin, or, if it had, that it hath not fallen into 
disfavor, by the excesses of its own professed. 
Twere well to send for the right reverend Abbot, 
and those pillars of sanctity the Fathers Cuno and 
Siegfried, to bear witness in thy behalf. God s 
wisdom ! I reason better with those worthies, in 
such a matter, than with thee !" 

Emich laughed, the sound echoing in that vaulted 
chapel to the ears of the monk, like the scoffing of a 
demon. Still, the natural equity of Father Arnolph 
told him that there was too much to justify the 
taunt of the noble, for he had long and bitterly 
mourned the depravity of many of the brotherhood. 

" I am not here to sit in judgment on those who 
err, but to defend the shrines at which I worship, 
and to warn thee from a fatal sin. If thy hand is 


ever lifted against these walls, it is raised against 
that which God hath blessed, and which God will 
avenge. But thou art of human feeling, Emich of 
Hartenburg; and though, doubting of the sacred 
character of that which thou wouldst fain destroy, 
thou canst not deceive thyself concerning these 
tombs In this holy chapel have prayers been often 
raised, and masses said, for the souls of thine own 
line !" 

The Count of Leiningen looked steadily 3t the 
speaker. Father Arnolph had placed himself, with 
out design, near the opening which communicated 
between that sombre chapel and the superior church. 
Rays of bright light shot through the eastern win 
dow, and fell upon the pavement at his feet, throw 
ing around his form the mild and solemn lustre 
which comes from the stained glass of the Gothic 
ages. The services of the morning had also spread 
throughout the entire building, that soothing atmo 
sphere which is usually the attendant of Roman 
worship. The incense had penetrated to the crypt, 
and unconsciously the warlike noble had felt its in 
fluence quieting his nerves and lulling the passions. 
All who have entered the principal Basilica of mod 
ern Rome, have been subject to a combination of 
moral and physical causes that produce the result 
we mean, and which, though more striking in that 
vast and glorious pile, resembling a world with 
attributes and an atmosphere of its own, is also felt 
in every Catholic temple of consequence in a less 
ened degree. 

" Here lie my fathers, Arnolph," answered the 
Count, huskily; "and here, as thou sayesi, have 
masses been said for their souls !" 

" And thou contemnest their graves thou wouldst 
violate even their bones !" 

" Twere not an act for a Christian !" 

" Look hither, Count. This is the monument of 


Jie good Emich, thy ancestor. He honored his 
God, and did not scruple to worship at our altars." 

" Thou knowest, holy Prior, that I have often 
bared my soul at thy knees." 

" Thou hast confessed, and hast been shrived ; 
that thou didst not lay up future griefs " 

" Say rather damnation" interrupted one behind, 
whose voice, issuing suddenly from that sepulchral 
chapel, seemed to come from the tombs themselves 
"Thou triflest, reverend Prior, with our holy 
mission, to deal thus tenderly with so sore a sinner." 

The Count of Leiningen had started, and even 
^uailed, at the first words of interruption ; but look 
ing around, he beheld the receding front, the sunken 
eye, and the bending person of Father Johan." 

" Monks, I leave you," said Emich, firmly. " It 
is good for ye to pray, and to frequent these gloomy 
altars ; but I, who am a soldier, cannot waste fur 
ther time in your vaults. Herr Prior, farewell. 
Thou hast a guardian that will protect the good." 

Before the Prior could recover his voice, for he 
too had been taken by surprise, the Count stalked, 
with a heavy footstep, up the marble stairs, and the 
tread of his armed heel was soon heard on the flags 



"The way is but short ; away " 


WHILE all must be conscious of the fearful . n- 
firmities that beset human nature, there are none so 
base as not to know that their being contains the 
seeds of that godlike principle which still likens 
them to their divine Creator. Virtue commands 
the respect of man, in whatever accidental stage of 
civilization, or of mental improvement, he may hap 
pen to exist ; and he who practises its precepts is 
certain of the respect, though he may not always 
secure the protection, of his contemporaries. 

As the Count of Leiningen walked down the rich 
and vast aisle of the Abbey-church, his thoughts 
vacillated between the impressions produced by the 
Prior, and his latent, but still predominant, inten 
tions. He might have been likened to one who 
listened to the councils of a good and of an evil 
genius ; that exhorting to forbearance and mercy, 
and this tempting to violence by the usual array of 
flattery and hopes. While he brooded over the 
exactions of the community, which were founded 
on a legal superiority that was alike hurtful to his 
power and galling to his pride, its manner of thwart 
ing his views, and its constant opposition to his su 
premacy in the valley, motives of enmity that were 
justly heightened by the dissolute and audacious 
deportment of too many of its members, the effect 
of all was secretly opposed by the image of Father 
Arnolph, surrounded by the mild and noble charac 
teristics of Christian virtue. Emich could not, 
though he fain would, chase from his imagination 
the impression of meekness, charity, and of self- 
denial, that a long acquaintance with the monk had 


made, and which the recent interviaw had served 
both to freshen and to render more deep. But a 
spectacle was prepared to meet his eyes in the 
court of the convent, that did as much towards 
weakening this happy influence of the Prior, by set- 
ting the pride of the noble in opposition to his better 
feelings, as could have been wished by the bitterest 
enemy of Limburg. 

It has been said that the outer wall of the Abbey 
encircled the entire brow of the hill, or mountain, 
on which the convent stood. Though the buildings 
were spacious and numerous, the size of the little 
plain on the summit left ample space for exercise 
and air. Besides the cloisters, which were vast, 
though possessing the character of monkish seclu 
sion, there were gardens in the rear of the Abbot s 
abode, and a court of considerable extent, imme 
diately in front of the church. Athwart this court, 
in which sundry groups of the late congregation yet 
lingered, was drawn up, in military order, a band 
of soldiers, wearing the colors, and acknowledging 
the a uthority, of the Elector Friedrich. The secret 
signal given by Father Bonifacius, when the Count 
entered the choir, had prepared this unwelcome 
sight for his neighbor. 

While the men-at-arms leaned on their arque 
buses, in grave attention to discipline, the Knight 
of Rhodes and the Abbe were occupied in paying 
their court to the fair wife of the Burgomaster of 
Deurckheim, and to her scarce fairer daughter. 
Young Berchthold stood aloof; watching the inter 
view with feelings allied equally to envy and jeal 

" A fair morning and a comfortable mass to you, 
high-born Emich !" cried the husband and father 
heartily, but lifting his cap, as the noble approached 
the spot where the burgher stood, waiting for this 
meeting ere he put foot into the stirrup; "I had 


thought the sight of your fathers altar was like to 
cheat me of this honor, and to send me away with 
out a word from your friendly and much-prized 

" Between thee and me, Heinrich, this slight 
could not happen," answered the Count, grasping 
the hand of the Burgomaster, which he squeezed 
with the cordiality and vigor of a soldier. " How 
fareth it with all in Deurckheim, that town of my 
affection, not to say of my right ?" 

" As you could wish, noble Count, and well-dis 
posed to the house of Leiningen. In all that per- 
taineth to love of your name and race, we lack 

" This is well, honest Heinrich ; it may yet be 
better But thou wilt do me grace this summer 
morning ?" 

" Nay, it is for your grace to command in this 
particular, and for one like me to obey." 

" Herr Heinrich, hast looked, well at these 
knaves of Friedrich 1 Ha ! are they not melan 
choly and ill-disposed at being cooped with Bene 
dictines, when there are stirring times in the Palati 
nate, and when their master hath as much as he 
can do to hold his court in Heidelberg ! Seest thou 
aught of this ?" 

Emich had dropped his voice, and the burgher 
was not a man to express more in answer, than the 
circumstances actually required. He looked elo 
quently, however, and the exchange of glances be 
tween him and the Count betrayed the nature of the 
understanding that connected the castle and the city. 

" You spoke of commanding my duty, mein Herr 
Graf, and it is fitting I should know in what manner 
to do you pleasure." 

" Nay, tis no pain-giving penance I ask. Turn 
tny horse s head towards Hartenburg, and share of 


my poor fare, with a loving welcome, for an hour 
or so." 

"I would it were within compass, my Lord 
Count," returned Heinrich, casting a doubting look 
towards Meta and his wife "but these Sunday 
masses are matters in which the women love to 
deal ; and from the first sound of the matin bell, till 
we shut the gates at even, I scarce call myself mas 
ter of a thought." 

" By the Virgin ! Twould seem ill indeed, did 
not Hartenburg contain a roof to shelter all of thy 
name and love-" 

" There are noble gentlemen already on your hos 
pitality, and I would not fain -" 

" Name them not This in the gay doublet, that 
weareth the white cross, is but a houseless Knight 
of Rhodes, one that wandereth like the dove from 
the ark, uncertain where to place his foot ; and he 
of black vestments, an idle Abbe from among the 
French, who doth little else but prate with the 
women. Leave thy female gender in their hands, 
for they are much accustomed to these gallantries." 

" Zum Henker ! most nobly born eccellenz, I 
never doubted their handiness in all idlenesses ; but 
my wife hath little humor for vain attentions of this 
nature, and not to conceal from my lord any of our 
humors, I will confess it is as little to my pleasure 
to witness so much ceremony with a woman. 
Were the well-born Ermengarde, your noble con 
sort, in the castle, my female charge might be glad 
to pay their court to her, but in her absence I doubt 
that they will cause more encumbrance than they 
will afford satisfaction." 

" Name it not, honest Heinrich, but leave the 
matter to me. As for these idlers, I will find them 
occupation, when fairly out of the saddle ; so will I 
not excuse the youngest of thy name." 

warm, frank manner of the noble prevailed, 


though the arrangement was not altogether agreea 
ble to the Burgomaster ; but in that age hospitality 
was always of so direct a character as seldom to 
admit denial without sufficient excuse. Emich now 
paid his court to the females. Smoothing his mous 
tache and beard, he saluted the cheeks of Ulricke, 
with affectionate freedom, and then, presuming on 
his years and rank, he pressed a kiss on the ruby 
lips of Meta. The girl blushed and laughed, and in 
her confusion curtesied, as if in acknowledgment of 
the grace from one of so high quality. Heinrich 
himself, though he so little liked the coquetry of the 
strangers, witnessed these liberties not only without 
alarm but with evident contentment. 

" Many thanks, noble Emich, for this honor to my 
women," he cried, lifting his bonnet again. " Meta 
is not used to these compliments, and she scarce 
knoweth rightly how to acknowledge the grace, for 
to say truth, it is not often that her cheek feeleth the 
tickling of a beard. I am no saluter of her sex, and 
there are none in Deurckheim that may so presume." 

" St. Denis defend me !" exclaimed the Abbe ; " in 
what shameful negligence have we fallen !" saluting 
the mild Ulricke on the instant, and repeating the 
same ceremony with the daughter, so suddenly, as 
to leave none present time to recover from their 
surprise. " Sir Knight of Rhodes, we appear in 
this affair as but of indifferent breeding !" 

" Hold, cousin of Viederbach," said Emich, laugh 
ing, while he placed a hand before his kinsman 
" We forget, all this time, that we are in the court 
of Limburg, and that salutations which savor so 
much of earth may scandalize the holy Benedictines. 
We will to horse, and keep our gallantries for a 
better season." 

The forward, impatient movement of young 
Berchthold was self-checked, and, swallowing his 
discontent, he turned aside to conceal his vexation. 


In the mean time, the whole party prepared to 
mount. Although repulsed in his effort to obtain a 
salute from the fair girl, who had so passively re 
ceived these liberties from his kinsman and the 
Abbe, the Knight of Rhodes busied himself in assist 
ing the damsel upon the crupper of her father s sad 
dle. A similar office was performed for Ulricke by 
the Count of Leiningen himself, and then the noble 
threw his own booted and heavy leg across the 
large and strong-jointed war-horse that was pawing 
the pavement of the court. The others imitated his 
example, even to the mounted servitors, who were 
numerous; when, doing stately reverence to the 
large crucifix that stood before them, the whole 
cavalcade ambled from the court. 

There were many curious spectators around the 
outer gate, among whom were sundry of the more 
humble dependants of Hartenburg, purposely col 
lected there, by an order of their lord, in the event 
of any sudden violence arising from his visit to the 
Abbey, together with a crowd of mendicants. 

" Alms, great Emich ! Alms, worthy and wealthy 
Burgomaster ! God s blessing on ye both, and holy 
St. Benedict heed ye in his prayers ! We are a- 
hungred and a-cold, and we crave alms at your 
honorable hands !" 

" Give the rogues a silver pence," said the Count 
to the purse-bearer, who rode in his train " They 
have a starving look, in sooth. These godly Bene 
dictines have, of late, been so busied between their 
garrison and their masses, that they have forgotten 
to feed their poor. Come nearer, friend ; art of 
the Jaegerthal ?" 

" No, noble Count. I come from a pilgrimage to 
a distant shrine, but want and suffering have befallen 
me by the way." 

"Hast pressed the monks for charity? or dost 


thou find them toe much engaged in godliness to 
remember human suffering ?" 

" Great Count, they give freely ; but where there 
are many mouths to feed, there needs be much gold. 
I say naught against the holy community of Lim- 
burg, which is godly in charity, as in grace." 

" Give the knave a kreutzer ;" growled Heinrich 
Frey ; hast thou aught to show in the way of au 
thority for undertaking this pilgrimage, and for 
assailing the Elector s subjects and servitors in a 
public horse-path ?" 

" Naught but this, illustrious Burgomaster," 
Heinrich wore his chain of office " naught but the 
commands of my confessor, and this pass of our 
own chief men." 

" Callest this naught ? Thou speakest of a legal 
instrument of high quality, an it were but a copy 
of silly rhymes ! Hold ! thou must not be led into 
temptation by too much want. Meta, wench, hast 
a kreutzer ?" 

" Here is a silver pence, that may better suit the 
pilgrim s necessities, father." 

" God keep thee, child ! Dost expect to escape 
want thyself, with such prodigality 1 But stay 
there are many of them, and the piece justly distrib 
uted might do good. Come nearer, friends. Here 
is a silver zwanziger, which you will divide honestly 
into twenty parts, of which two are for the stran 
ger, for to him are we most indebted by the com 
mands of God, and one for each inhabitant of the 
valley, not forgetting the poor woman that, in your 
haste, and by reason of her years, you have pre 
vented from drawing near. For this boon, I ask 
prayers of you in behalf of the Elector, the city of 
Deurckheim, and the family of Frey." 

So saying, the Burgomaster pushed ahead, and 
was soon at the foot of the mountain of Limburg. 
The train of footmen, who had lingered to witness 


the largess of the magistrate, and who had consid 
ered the indifference of Emich as what was no 
more than natural in one, placed by Providence in a 
situation so far removed from vulgar wants, was 
about to follow, when a lay-brother of the convent 
touched one of the party on the arm, signing for 
him to re-enter the court. 

" Thou art needed further, friend," whispered the 
lay-brother. "Amuse thyself with these men-at- 
arms till they retire ; then seek the cloisters." 

A nod sufficed to tell the lay-brother that he was 
understood, and he immediately disappeared. The 
follower of Count Emich did as commanded, loiter 
ing in the court until the object of the Abbot was 
accomplished, that of exhibiting the protection of 
the Elector to his dangerous neighbor, and the 
arquebusiers marched to their quarters. The road 
was no sooner clear, than the peasant who had been 
detained proceeded to do as he had been ordered. 

In each conventual edifice of the other hemi 
sphere, there is an inner court surrounded by low 
and contemplative arcades, called the cloisters. 
The term, which is given to the seclusion of monas 
tic life in general, and to the objects of the institu 
tion itself, in an architectural sense, is limited to the 
secluded and sombre piazzas just mentioned. When 
this part of the building is decorated, as often hap 
pens, with the elaborate ornaments of the Gothic 
style, it is not easy to conceive a situation more 
happily imagined for the purposes of reflection, self- 
examination, and religious calm. To us the clois 
ters have ever appeared pregnant with the poetry 
of monkish existence, and, Protestant as we are, we 
never yet entered one without feeling the influence 
of that holy and omnipotent power that is thought 
to be propitiated by conventual seclusion. In Italy, 
the land of vivid thought and of glorious realities, the 
pencils of the greatest masters have been put in 


requisition to give the cloisters a mild attraction, 
blended with lessons of instruction, that are in strict 
consonance with their uses. Here are found some 
of the finest remains of Raphael, of Domenichino, 
and of Andrea del Sarto ; and the traveller now 
enters vaulted galleries, that the monk so long paced 
in religious hope or learned abstraction, to visit tho 
most prized relics of art. 

The dependant of Count Emich had no difficulty 
in finding his way to the place in question, for, as 
usual, there was a direct communication between 
the cloisters of Limburg and the church. By en 
tering the latter, and taking a lateral door, which 
was known to lead to the sacristy, he found himself 
beneath the arcades, in the midst of the touching 
seclusion described. Against the walls were tablets 
with Latin inscriptions, in honor of different bro 
thers who had been distinguished by piety and know 
ledge ; and here and there was visible, in ivory or 
stone, that constant monitor of Catholic worship, 
the crucifix. 

The stranger paused, for a single monk paced 
the arcades, and his mien was not inviting for one 
who doubted of his reception. At least so thought 
the dependant of Emich, who might easily have 
mistaken the chastened expression of Father Ar- 
nolph s features, clouded as they now were with 
care, for severity. 

" What wouldst thou ?" demanded the Prior, when 
a turn brought him face to face with the intruder. 

" Reverend monk, thy much-prized blessing." 

"Kneel, and receive it, son. Thou art doubly 
blest ; in seeking consolation from the Church, and 
in avoiding the fatal heresies of the times." 

The Prior repeated the benediction, made the 
usual sign of grace, and motioned for the other to 

" Wouldst thou aught else ?" he asked, observing 


that the peasant did not retire, as was usual for those 
who received this favour. 

"Naught unless yonder brother hath occasion 
for me." 

The face of Siegfried was thrust through a door 
which led to the cells. The countenance of the 
Prior changed like that of one who had lost all con 
fidence in the intentions of his companion, and he 
pursued his way along the arcade. The other 
glided past, and disappeared by the door which he 
had been covertly invited to enter. 

It has already been said that the Benedictine is an 
order of hospitality. A principal building of the hill 
was especially devoted to the comforts of the Abbot, 
and to those of the travellers it was always his duty, 
and in the case of Father Bonifacius scarcely less 
often his pleasure, to entertain. Here were seen 
some signs of the great wealth of the monastery, 
though it was wealth chastened by forms, and re 
stricted by opinion ; still there was little of self-denial, 
or indeed of any of that self-mortification which is 
commonly thought to be the inseparable attendant 
of the cell. The rooms were wainscoted with dark 
oak ; emblems of religious faith, in costly materials, 
abounded; nor was there any want of velvet and 
other stuffs, all however of sober colours, though of 
intrinsic value. Father Siegfried ushered the peasant 
into one of the most comfortable of these rooms. 
It was the cabinet of the Abbot, who, having thrown 
aside the robes of office in which he had so lately 
appeared in the choir, and, ungirt and divested of 
all the churchly pomp in which he had just shown 
himself to the people, was now taking his ease, 
with the indolence of a student, and with some of 
the negligence of a debauchee. 

" Here is the youth I have named to you, holy 
Abbot," sakl Father Siegfried, motioning his com 
panion to advance. 


Bonifacius laid down a parchment-covered and 
illuminated volume, one but lately issued from the 
press, rubbing his eyes like a man suddenly roused 
from a dreamy abstraction. 

" Truly, brother Siegfried, these knaves of Leip 
zig have done wonders with their art ! Not a word 
can I find astray, or a thought concealed. God 
knows to what pass of information this excess of 
knowledge, so long sacred to the learned, may yet 
lead us ! The office of a librarian will no longer be 
of rare advantages, or scarcely of repute." 

" Have we not proofs of the evil, in the growing 
infidelity, and in the manifest insubordination of the 
times ?" 

" It were better for all their souls, and their present 
repose, that fewer did the thinking in this trouble 
some world Thou art named Johan, son ?" 

"Gottlob, most reverend Abbot, by your leave, 
and with the Church s favor." 

" Tis a pious appellation, and I trust thou dost not 
forget to obey the duty of which it should hourly 
remind thee." 

" In that particular I can say that I praise God, 
father, for all the benefits I receive, and were they 
double what they are, I fee that within me which 
says I could go on rendering thanks for ever, for 
gracious .gifts." 

The answer of Gottlob caused the Abbot to turn 
his head. After studying the demure expression of 
the young man s face intently, he continued 

"This is well; thou art a huntsman in Count 
Emiclrs household ?" 

" His cow-herd, holy Abbot, and a huntsman in 
the bargain ; for a more scampering, self-losing, 
tiouble-giving family is not to be found in the Pa- 
F atinate, than this of mine !" 

"I remember it was a cow-herd; thou dealt a 
.ittle lightly with my brother Siegfried here, in pre- 


tending thou wert of Deurckheim, and not of the 

" To speak fairly to your reverence, there was some 
business between us ; for be it known to you, holy 
Abbot, a cow-herd is made to suffer for all the frolics 
of his beasts, and so I preferred to do penance simply 
for my own backslidings, without white-washing the 
consciences of all Lord Emich s cattle in the bar 

The Abbot turned again, and this time his look 
was still longer and more scrutinizing than before. 

"Hast thou heard of Luther?" 

" Does your reverence mean the drunken cobbler 
of Deurckheim." 

" I mean the monk of Wittenberg, knave : though, 
by St. Benedict ! thou hast not unaptly named the 
rebel ; for truly doth he cobble that would fain mend 
the offices or discipline of Holy Church ! I ask if 
thou hast sullied thy understanding and weakened 
thy faith, by lending ear to this damnable heresy, 
that is abroad in our Germany ?" 

" St. Benedict and the blessed Maria keep your 
reverence in mind, according to your deserts ! What 
hath a poor cow-herd to do with questions that 
trouble the souls of the learned, and cause even the 
peaceably disposed to become quarrelsome and war 

" Thou hast received a schooling above thy for 
tune Art of the Jaegerthal ?" 

" Born and nurtured, holy Abbot. We are of long 
standing in the valley, and few families are better 
known for skill in rearing beeves, or for dealing 
cunningly with a herd, than that of which I come, 
humble and poor as I may seem to your reverence." 

" I doubt but there is as much seeming as reality 
in this indifferent opinion of thyself. But thou hast 
had an explanation with brother Siegfried, and we 
ceunt on thy services. Thou knowest the power of 


the Church, son, and cannot be ignorant of its dispo 
sition to deal mercifully with those that do it hom 
age, nor of its displeasure when justly angered. We 
are disposed to deal in increased kindness with those 
who do not stray from the fold, at this moment, 
when the Devils are abroad scattering the ignoran 
and helpless." 

" Notwithstanding all you have said, most reverend 
Abbot, concerning the trifle I have gleaned in the 
way of education, I am too little taught to under 
stand aught but plain speech. In the matter of a 
bargain it might be well to name the conditions 
clearly, lest a poor, but well-meaning, youth should 
happen to be damned, simply because he hath little 
knowledge of Latin, or cannot clearly understand 
what hath not been clearly said." 

" I have no other meaning than that thy pious con 
duct will be remembered at the altar and the con 
fessional; and that indulgences, and other lenities, 
will not be forgotten when there is question of thee." 

" This is excellent, holy Abbot, for those that may 
profit by it but, Saint Benedict help us ! of what 
account would it all be, were Lord Emich to threaten 
his people with the dungeon arid stripes, should any 
dare to frequent the altars of Limburg, or other 
wise to have dealings with the reverend brother 
hood ?" 

" Dost think our prayers, or our authority, cannot 
penetrate the walls of Hartenburg ?" 

" Of that, most powerful Bonifacius, I say nothing, 
since I never have yet profited in the way you 
mean. The dungeon of Hartenburg and I are not 
strangers to each other ; and, were I to speak my 
most intimate thoughts, it would be to say, that Saint 
Benedict himself would find it no easy matter to 
open its doors, or to soften its pavements, so long 
as the Count was in an angry humour. Potz Tau 
send, holy Abbot ! it is well to speak of miracles 


and of indulgences ; but let him who imagines that 
either is about to make that damp and soul-chilling 
hole warm and pleasant, pass a night within its walls 
in November ! He may enter with as much faith in 
the Abbey prayers as he will ; but if he do not come 
forth with great dread of Lord Emich s displeasure, 
why he is not flesh and blood, but a burning kiln in 
the form of mortality !" 

Father Bonifacius saw that it was useless en 
deavoring to influence the mind of the cow-herd in 
the vulgar manner, and he had recourse to surer 
means. Motioning his companion to hand him a little 
casket, externally decorated with many of the vis 
ible signs of the Christian faith, he took out of it a 
purse, that wanted for neither size nor weight The 
eyes of Gottlob glistened had not the monks been 
much occupied in examining the gold, they might 
have suspected that the pleasure he betrayed was a 
little affected and he manifested a strong disposition 
to know the contents of a bag that had so many out 
ward signs of value. 

" This will make peace and create faith between 
us," said the Abbot, handing a golden mark to Gott 
lob. " Here is that which the dullest comprehension 
can understand ; and whose merits, I doubt not, will 
be sufficiently clear to one of thy ready wit." 

" Your reverence does not overvalue my means," 
answered the cow-herd, who pocketed the piece 
without further ceremony. " Were our good Mother 
of the Church to take this method of securing friends, 
she might laugh at all the Luthers between the Lake 
of Constance and the ocean, him of Wittenberg 
among the number : but, by some strange oversight, 
she has of late done more towards taking away the 
people s gold, than towards bestowing ! I am re 
joiced to find that the mistake is at last discovered ; 
and chiefly am I glad, that one, poor and unworthy 


as I, has been among the first that she is pleased to 
make an instrument of her new intentions !" 

The Abbot appeared at a loss to understand the 
character of his agent; but, being a worldly and 
selfish man himself, he counted rather loosely on the 
influence of a mediator whose potency is tacitly 
admitted by all of mercenary propensities. He re 
sumed his seat, therefore, like one who saw little 
necessity for farther concealment, and went directly 
to the true object of the interview. 

" Thou hast something to communicate from the 
Castle of Hartenburg, good Gottlob?" 

" If it be your reverence s pleasure to listen." 

" Proceed Canst tell aught of the force Emich 
hath gathered in the hold ?" 

" Mein Herr Abbot, it is no easy matter to count 
varlets that go staggering about, from the moment 
the sun touches your Abbey towers, to that in which 
he sets behind the Teufelstein." 

" Hast thou not means of separating them in divi 
sions, and of making the enumerations of each 
apart ?" 

" Holy Abbot, that experiment hath failed. I di 
vided them into the drunk and the sober ; but, for 
the life of me, I could never get them all to be long 
enough of the same mind, to hunt up those that were 
in garrets and cellars ; for while this slept off* his 
debauch, that swallowed cup after cup, in a manner 
to recruit the drunkards as fast as they lost. It were 
far easier to know the Emperor s policy, than to 
count Lord Emich s followers !" 

" Still they are many." 

" They are and they are not, as one happens to 
view soldiership. In the way of draining a butt, 
Duke Friedrich would find them a powerful corps, 
even in an attack against his Heidelburg tun ; and 
yet I doubt whether he would think them of much 
account in the pressing warfare he wageth." 


< Go to thou art too indirect in thy answers for 
the duty thou hast undertaken. Return the gold 
"f thou refusest the service." 

" I pray thee, reverend Abbot, to remember the 
risks I have already run in this desperate under 
taking, and to consider that the trifle you have so 
munificently bestowed, is already more than earned 
by the danger of my ears, to say nothing of great 
loss of reputation, and some pricking of conscience." 

"This clown hath tampered with thee, Father 
Siegfried," said the Abbot, in a tone of reproach to 
the attending monk : " he even dares to make light 
of our presence and office !" 

" We have the means of recalling him to his re 
spect, as well as to a remembrance of his engage 

" Thou sayest true : let the remedies be applied 
but hold!" 

During this brief colloquy between the Benedic 
tines, Father Siegfried had touched a cord, and a 
lay-brother, of vigorous frame, showed himself. At 
a signal from the monk, he laid a hand on an arm 
of the unresisting Gottlob, and was about to lead 
him from the room, when the last words of the 
Abbot, and another signal from Father Siegfried, 
caused him to pause. 

Bonifacius leaned a cheek on his hand, and mused 
long on the policy of the step he was about to take. 
The relations between the Abbey and the Castle, 
to adopt diplomatic language, were precisely in that 
awkward state in which it was almost as hazardous 
to recede as to advance. To imprison a vassal of 
tke Count of Hartenburg, might bring matters to 
an immediate issue ; and yet, to permit him to quit 
the convent, was to deprive the brotherhood of the 
means of extracting the information it was so im 
portant to obtain, and to procure which had been 
the principal inducement of attending the debauch 


already described, at a moment when there was so 
little real amity between the revellers. The pre- 
cautionof Emich had frustrated this well-laid scheme, 
and the result of the experiment had been too cost y 
to admit of repetition. There was also hazard in 
permitting Gottlob to return to Hartenburg, for the 
expectations and hostile spirit of the Abbey had been 
so unadvisedly exposed to the hind, as to render it 
certain he would relate what had occurred. It was 
desirable, too, to maintain an appearance of con 
fidence, although so little was felt; for the monk 
well knew, that next to friendship, its apparent ex 
istence was of account in preventing the usual ex 
pedients of open hostility. Agents were at Heidel- 
burg, pressing the Elector on a point of the last 
concern to the welfare of the brotherhood ; and it 
was particularly material that Emich should not be 
driven to any overt act before the result of this 
mission was known. In short, these too little powers 
were in a condition similar to that in which some 
greater communities have been known to exist, in 
stinctively alive to the opposing character of their 
respective interests, and yet tampering with the de 
nouement, because neither was yet prepared to 
proclaim all it wished, meditated, and hoped to be 
able to attain, In the mean time, there was an os 
tensible courtesy between the belligerent parties, 
occasionally obscured by bursts of natural feeling, 
which, in politics, the world calls bonhommie, but 
which would, perhaps, be better termed by the 
frank designation of artifice. 

The Abbot was so much accustomed to this sort 
of politic reflection, that all these considerations 
passed before his mind in less time than we have 
consumed in enumerating them. Still the pause 
was salutary; for, when he resumed the discourse, 
he spoke like one whose decision was supported by 


" Thou wilt tarry with us a little, Gottlob, for the 
good of thy soul," he said, making a sign that was 
understood by his inferiors. 

" A thousand thanks, humane and godly Abbot. 
Next to the present good of my body, I look with 
most concern to the future condition of my poor 
soul ; and there is great comfort and consolation in 
your gracious words. It is but the soul of a poor 
man ; but, being my all, in the way of souls, it must 
needs be taken care of." 

" The discipline we meditate will be healthful. 
Brothers, lead the penitent to his cell." 

The singular indifference with which Gottlob 
heard his doom, might have given the Abbot motive 
for reflection, had he not been so much occupied by 
other thoughts. As it was, the hind accompanied 
the lay brother without resistance, and indeed with 
the manner of one who appeared to think he was a 
gainer by this especial notice from the community 
of Limburg. So natural and easy was the air ol 
Gottlob, as they took the direction of a gloomy cor 
ridor, that Father Siegfried began to believe he 
had employed an agent whose mind, shrewd and 
peculiar as it seemed at times, was in truth subject 
to moments of more than usual imbecility and dull 
ness. He placed the cow-herd in a cell, pointed to 
a crucifix, its only article of furniture, and, without 
deeming it necessary even to secure the door, re- 



" The Lady Valeria is come 

To visit you." 


A SHORT ride brought the cavalcade of Count 
Emich to the gates of Hartenburg. When all had 
alighted, and the guests, with the more regular in 
mates of the castle, were ushered into the hall, the 
lord of the hold again saluted Ulrike and her daugh 
ter. This freedom was the privilege of his rank, 
and of his character as host; and for its exercise, 
lie once more received the grateful acknowledg 
ments of Heinrich Frey. The females were then 
committed to the care of Gisela, the warder s daugh 
ter, who, in the absence of its more noble mistress, 
happened to be the presiding person of her sex in the 

" Thou art thrice welcome, upright and loyal 
Heinrich !" exclaimed the Count, heartily, while he 
led the Burgomaster by the hand, into one of the 
rooms of honor " None know thy worth, and thy 
constancy to thy friends, better than the master of 
this poor castle ; and none love thee better." 

" Thanks, well-born Emich, and such duty as one 
of poor birth and breeding can and should pay to a 
noble so honoured and prized. I am little used to 
courtesies, beyond those which we burghers give 
and take in the streets, and may not do myself full 
justice in the expression of reverence and respect, 
but I pray you, Herr Count, to take the desire for 
the performance." 

" Wert thou the Emperor s most favored cham 
berlain, thy speech could not do thee more credit. 
Though Deurckheim be not Madrid, it is a well 
respected and courtly city, and none need envy the 
Roman, or the Parisian, that dwelleth there. Here 


is my kinsman of Viederbach, a knight that Provi 
dence hath cast a little loosely upon the world since 
the downfall of his Mediterranean island of Rhodes, 
and who hath travelled far arid near, and he swears, 
daily, thy town hath no parallel, for its dimensions." 

" Considered as a mountain city of no great mag 
nitude, meine Herren, we do not blush at the aspect 
of our ancient walls." 

" Thou needest not, and thou must have noted 
that I spoke in reference to its size. Monsieur 
Latouche is a gentleman that cometh from the capi 
tal of King Francis itself; and no later than this 
morning, he remarked on the neatness, and wealth, 
and other matters of consideration, that make them 
selves apparent, even to the stranger, in thy well- 
governed and prosperous borough." 

The Burgomaster acknowledged the compliment, 
by a profound inclination and a gratified eye, for no 
flattery is so palpable as not to meet a welcome 
with those who labor for public distinction; and 
Emich well knew, that the police and order of his 
city were weak spots in Heinrich Frey s humility. 

" Lord Emich scarce does me justice," returned 
the pliant Abbe, " since I found many other causes 
of admiration. The deference that is paid to rank 
in thy populace, and the manner in which the con 
venience of the honourable is respected, are parti 
cularly worthy of commendation." 

" The churchman is right, Lord Emich for, of 
all the towns in Germany, I do not think it easy to 
find another in which the poor and base are so well 
taught to refrain from thrusting their importunities 
and disadvantages on the gentle, as in our Deurck- 
heim. I think my lord the Count must have ob 
served the strict severity and cautious justice of 
our rules in this particular ?" 

" None know them better, nor does any heed them 
more. I cannot recall the moment, cousin Albrecht, 



when any unpleasant intrusion on my privileges hath 
ever occurred within its gates. But I keep you from 
refreshing yourselves, worthy friends. Give us leave 
a little ; we will seek you again, at your own con 

The Knight and the Abbe took this intimation 
of the desire of the Count to be alone with the 
Burgomaster in good part, and withdrew with 
out unnecessary delay. When alone, Emich again 
took Heinrich Frey by the hand, and led him away 
into a part of the castle where none presumed to in 
trude without an especial errand. Here he entered 
one of those narrow rooms, which were devoted to 
secret uses, and which was well termed a closet, 
being in effect but little larger and scarcely better 
lighted, than the straitened apartments to which we 
give the same appellation in these later times. 

When fairly protected from observation, and re 
moved beyond the danger of eaves-droppers and spies, 
the Count threw aside his cloak, unbuckled his sword- 
belt, and assumed the manner of one at his ease. The 
Burgomaster took a seat on a stool, in deference to 
his companion s rank ; while the latter, without seem 
ing sensible of the act, seated himself at his side, in 
the only chair that the closet contained. Whoever 
has haa much intercourse with Asiatics, or with 
Mussulmans of the southern shore of the Mediter 
ranean, must have frequently observed the silent, 
significant, manner with which they regard eacn 
other, when disposed to court or to yield confidence ; 
the eye gradually kindling, and the muscles of the 
mouth relaxing, until the feeling is fully betrayed in 
a smile. This is one of the means employed by men 
who dwell under despotic and dangerous govern 
ments, and where the social habits are much tinc 
tured with violence and treachery, of assuring one 
another of secret faith and ready support. There 
is a sort of similar freemasonry in all conditions of 


life, in which frank and just institutions do not spread 
their mantle equally over the powerful and the weak, 
superseding, by the majesty of the law, the necessity 
of these furtive appeals to the pledges and sympathies 
of confidants. Such, in some degree, was the nature 
of the communication with which Emich of Har- 
tenburg now commenced his private intercourse 
with Heinrich Frey. The Count first laid his square, 
bony, hand on the knee of the Burgomaster, which 
he squeezed until the iron fingers were nearly buried 
in the fleshy protuberance. Each turned his head 
toward his companion, looking askance, as if they 
mutually understood the meaning of what was con 
veyed by this silent coquetry. Still, notwithstanding 
the apparent community of thought and confidence, 
the countenance and air of each was distinguished 
by the personal character and the social station of 
the individual. The eye of the Baron was both 
more decided, and more openly meaning, than that 
of the Burgomaster ; while the smile of the latter 
appeared rather like a faint reflection of the inviting 
expression of the former, than the effect of any in 
ward impulse. 

"Hast heard of last night s success?" abruptly 
demanded the Count. 

"Nothing of the sort hath gladdened me, Herr 
Count ; my heart yearns to know all, if it touches 
your high interests." 

" The mass-singing rogues are stripped of theii 
wine-tribute ! Of that much are they fairly and 
legally disburdened ! Thou knowest of our long- 
intended trial of heads; I had intended to have 
prayed thee to be a second at the banquet, but the 
presence of these idlers put some restraint on my 
hospitality. Thou wouldest have proved a stanch 
second in such an onset, Heinrich !" 

" I thank my lord the Count, and shall deem the 
grace as good as accomplished in the wish. I am 


not worse than another at board, and may boast of 
some endurance in the way of liquor, but the serious- 
ness of the times admonishes us, of civic authority, 
to be prudent. There is a wish in the people to be 
admitted to certain unreasonable and grave privi 
leges, such as the right of vending their wares in the 
market-place at unseasonable hours, when the con 
venience of the burgomasters would be much vexed 
by the concession ; and other similar innovations, 
against which we must make a firm stand, lest they 
come, in time, to invade our general authority and 
cause an unnatural convulsion. Were we to give 
way to pretensions so extravagant, Herr Count, the 
town would come to general confusion; and the 
orderly and respectable city of Deurckheim would 
justly merit to be compared to the huts of those 
countries of which they speak in the distant land of 
America, that hath so much, of late, given cause to 
writings and conversation. We need, therefore, 
look to the example set ; for we have busy enemies, 
who make the most of the smallest indulgences. At 
another time, I would gladly have drained Heidel- 
burg to your gracious honor." 

" Thou wouldest not have been in danger of ob 
servation here ; and, by the three holy Kings of 
Koeln, I should know how to tutor any prying knave 
that might chance to thrust a curious eye within 
these walls ! But thy discretion is worthy of thy 
prudence, Heinrich; for, with thee, I deem the time 
serious for all lovers of established order, and of the 
peace of mankind. What would the knaves, that 
they thus trouble thy authority ? Are they not fed 
and clad ? and do they not now possess privileges 
out of number ? The greedy rogues, if left to their 
humors, would fain envy their betters each delicate 
morsel they carry to their mouths, or each drop of 
generous rhenjsh that moistens their lips !" 

"I fear, well-born Emich, that this spirit of cov. 


etousness is in their vile natures ! I have rarely con 
sented to any little yielding to their entreaties, such 
as a wish to swell out the time of their merry 
makings, or a desire like this of the market-place, 
that the taste of the indulgence hath not given a 
relish for fuller fare. No; he that would govern 
quietly, and at his own ease, must govern thoroughly; 
else shall we all become illiterate savages, fitter for 
the forests of these Indies, than for our present ra 
tional and charitable civilization." 

" Braver words were never uttered in thy council- 
hall, and well do I know the head that conceived 
them ! Had there been occasion to have summoned 
thee hither for the banquet, the excuse should have 
satisfied, though the vineyards were the forfeiture. 
But what didst think, friend Heinrich., of the priests 
to-day, and of their warlike company !" 

" Tis plain Duke Friedrich still upholds them ; 
and to deal frankly with my lord the Count, the men- 
at-arms have the air of fellows that are not likely to 
yield the hill without fair contention." 

"Thinkest thou thus, Burgomaster? Twere a 
thousand pities that men of tried mettle should do 
each other harm, for the benefits and pleasure of a 
community of shaven Benedictines ! What is there 
to urge in favor of pretensions so audacious as 
these they prefer, and which are so offensive, both 
to me, as a noble of the empire, and to all of any 
note or possessions in Deurckheim ?" 

" They lay great stress, Herr Count, on the virtue 
of ancient usages, and on the sacred origin of their 

"As much respect as thou wilt for rights that are 
sealed by time, for such is the stamp that gives value 
to my own fair claims ; and many of thy city privi 
leges come chiefly of use. But the matter between 
js is of abuse ; and I hold it to be unworthy of those 


who can right themselves, to submit to wrong Do 
the monks still press the town for dues ? 

" With offensive importunity. If matters be not 
quickly stayed, we shall come to open and indecent 

" I would give a winter s enjoyment of my chases, 
were Friedrich more sorely pressed !" exclaimed the 
Count, laying his hand again on the Burgomaster s 
knee, whose countenance he studied with a signifi 
cance that was not lost on his companion. " I speak 
merely in the manner of his being driven to know 
his true and fast friends from those who are false." 

Heinrich Frey remained silent. 

" The Elector is a mild and loving prince, but one 
sorely ridden by Rome ! I fear we shall never have 
a tranquil neighborhood, notwithstanding our long 
forbearance, until the Church is persuaded to limit 
its authority to its duties." 

The eyelids of the Burgomaster lowered, as it 
might be in reflection. 

"And chiefly, Heinrich, am I troubled lest my 
good and loving Deurckheimers lose this occasion 
to do themselves right," continued the Count, squeez 
ing the knee he still grasped, until even the com 
pact citizen flinched with the force of the pressure. 
"What say they in the council-hall touching this 

There was no longer any plausible apology for 
the silence of the Burgomaster, who did not an 
swer, however, without working the heavy muscles 
of his face, as if delivered of his opinions with pain. 

" Men speak their minds among us, noble-born 
Count, much as Duke Friedrich prospers, or fails, in 
his warfare. When we hear good tidings from the 
other side of the river, the brotherhood fares but 
badly in our discourses ; but when the Elector s war 
riors triumph, we hold it prudent to remember they 
have friends." 


" God s truth ! Herr Heinrich, it is full time that 
you come to certain conclusions, else shall we be 
saddled to the end of our days by these hard-riding 
priests ! Art thou not wearied with all their greedy 
exactions, that thou waitest patiently for more ?" 

"In that particular, a little sufficeth for our humors. 
There is not a city between Constance and Leyden, 
that is more quickly satisfied with paying than our 
Deurckheim : but we are husbands and fathers, Herr 
Count, and men that bear a heavy burthen of au 
thority; and we must be wary, lest in throwing 
aside one portion of the load, space be found on 
our shoulders to place another that is heavier. 
When I would speak of your strong love to the 
town, there are distrustful tongues, that question me 
sorely of its fruits, and of your own honorable in 
tentions in our behalf." 

" To all of which thou couldest not be wanting 
of replies ! Have I not often entertained thee with 
my loving wishes in behalf of the citizens ?" 

" If wishes in our behalf could serve our interests, 
the townsmen might, in their proper right, put in a 
claim to high favor. In the way of longing for 
our own success, Antwerp itself is not our better." 

" Nay, thou takest my meaning unkindly : what 
Emich of Hartenburg wishes for his friends, he finds 
means to perform. But we will not trouble digestion, 
as we are about to feed, with these tiresome details " 

" I pray you, Herr Count, not to doubt my means; 
little troubles me, when " 

" Thou shalt yield to my humor. What ! is not 
the Count of Leiningen master in his own castle. Not 
a word more will I hear till thou hast tasted of my 
poor hospitality. Did my knaves serve thee, as I 
commanded yesterday, with the fat buck that fell 
by rny own hand, Heinrich ?" 

" A thousand thanks, mein Herr they did, and 
right cheerfully. I gave the rogues a silver penny for 


their largess ; and the dust of the Jaegerthal was 
washed away in heavy draughts of our wine of the 

"I would have it so ; between friends, there should 
be no niggardly reserve, in the way of courtesies," 
said Emich, rising. " Dost not bethink thee, Burgo 
master, of looking among the youths of Deurck- 
heim for a son to stay thy age 1 Meta hath reached 
the years when maidens gladly become wives." 

" The wench is not ignorant of her time of life, 
and the search of a suitable husband hath not failed 
to give me fatherly concern. I do not presume to 
compare our conditions and early lives in aught 
that is disrespectful, mein Herr Graf; but, touching 
all that is common to great and little, the youth of 
this day seem not as they were in the time of our 
young manhood." 

" Priest-ridden, Burgomaster ; too much of Rome 
in our laws and habits. God s my life ! when I first 
mounted steed, in the court below, I could have 
leaped the convent towers, did a Benedictine dare 
gainsay the feat !" 

" That would have been a miracle little short of 
the raising of their convent walls," answered Hein- 
rich, laughing at his companion s flight, and rising 
in deference to the attitude the noble had been 
pleased to take. " These Benedictines have been 
careless of their advantages, else might they still 
have kept the circumstance of that miracle as much 
beyond dispute, as it was in our young days, Lord 

" And what say they in Deurckheim, now, touch 
ing the affair ?" 

" Nay, men treat it, at present, as they treat other 
disputable subjects. Since this outcry of Brother 
Luther, the^e have appeared many who call in ques 
tion not only that, but divers others of the Abbey s 


The Count unconsciously crossed himself, seeming 
to ponder gloomily on the subject, within his own 
mind. Then glancing towards his companion, he 
perceived that he was standing. 

" I cry thy mercy, worthy Burgomaster ; but my 
inattention hath given thee this pain. My leg hath 
been so much of late suspended in the stirrup, that 
it hath need of straightening; but it should not, in jus 
tice, cause thee this inconvenience. I pray thee, 
Herr Frey, be seated," 

" That would ill become my station in your 
presence, noble and well-born Emich ; nor would it 
do fit credit to my reverence and affection." 

" Nay, I will hear none of this. Thy seat, Master 
Heinrich, and that without delay, lest I seem to 
overlook thy merits." 

" I pray mein Herr Graf not to do himself this 
wrong ; nay, if it be your honorable will I blush at 
mine own daring if I consent, I call my lord to 
witness tis only in profound respect for his will !" 

During this struggle of courtesy, the Count suc 
ceeded, by means of gentle violence, in forcing the 
Burgomaster to resume his seat. Heinrich had 
yielded with a species of maiden coyness ; but when 
he found that, instead of occupying his own humble 
stool, he had unwittingly been forced into the arm 
chair of the noble, he rebounded from the cushion, 
as if the leather contained enough of the electric 
fluid to bid defiance to the nonconductor qualities 
of the ample woollen garment in which his nether 
person was cased. 

" Gott bewahre !" exclaimed the Burgomaster, in 
harsh, energetic German: "The empire would cry 
out against this scandal, were it known ! I owe it to 
my reputation to deny myself an honor so little 

" And I to my authority to enforce my will, and to 
proclaim thy deserts." 



Here the amiable force on the part of the Count, 
and the courteous coquetry of Heinrich Frey, were 
resumed, until the latter, fearful of offending by 
longer resistance, was obliged to submit, protesting, 
however, to the last, against the apparent presump 
tion on his own part, and against the great injus 
tice which the lord of the hold was doing to his 
own rights, by thus insisting. 

A distinguished foreign orator once pronounced 
the titles of honor, and the social distinctions that 
are conferred by the European governments, to be 
the " cheap defence of nations." This opinion 
strikes us to be merely one of the thousand bold 
fallacies that have been broached to uphold existing 
interests, without reference to their true effects, or 
to their inherent justice. This "cheap defence," 
like the immortal Falstaff, who was not only witty 
himself, but the cause of wit in others, is the origin 
of a hundred sufficiently costly habits, that leave 
him who bears the burthen but little reason to exult 
in its discovery. We recommend to all one-eyed 
economists, who still retain any faith in this well- 
known opinion of the English orator, to read that 
letter in the Spectator, in which a city youth relates 
the manner he is driven to vindicate his own reserve 
to his fair country cousins, who would fain reproach 
him with an ungraceful disrespect of his holiday 
privileges, by reminding them of the calculations of 
the individual who refused to indulge in cheese 
cakes, because they brought with them so many 
other unnecessary expenditures. 

But whether honors of the description just alluded 
to, do or do not form any portion of the economy 
of a nation, there is little question but flattery, like 
this which Emich has just bestowed on the Burgo 
master, is one of the subtle and most powerful agents 
of the great in effecting their secret purposes. Few 
are they alas, how few ! that possess a vision 


sufficiently clear, and an ambition so truly noble, as 
to look beyond the narrow and vulgar barriers of 
human selfishness, and to regard truth as it came 
from God, without respect for persons and things, 
except as they are the instruments of his will. It 
is certain that Heinrich Frey had little pretension 
to be one of this scrutinizing and elevated class; for 
when he found himself fairly seated in the chair of 
the Count of Hartenburg, with the noble himself 
standing, his sensations were like those which are 
felt by the philosopher of the other hemisphere, who 
is authorized to put a ribbon at his button-hole; 
or the tradesman of this, who is elected to the 
common-council of his native city, after being run 
on both tickets. Still he greatly regretted there 
was no one to envy his preferment; for, after the 
first soothing effect on his own self-love, that unquiet 
spirit which haunts us to the last, disfiguring the 
fairest pictures, and casting its alloy into every scheme 
of happiness, suggested that his triumph would be 
imperfect without a witness. Just as this rebellious 
feeling became troublesome, there appeared at the 
door of the closet, the very being of all others that 
the Burgomaster would have chosen to see him in 
the enjoyment of this high honor. A gentle tap 
announced the presence of the intruder, and when 
the authoritative voice of Emich had given the 
permission, the mild Ulrike appeared on the thres 

Surprise was strongly painted on the features of 
the Burgomaster s wife. The husband had crossed 
his legs, and was indulging in his ease, with a sort 
of noble indifference to the unusual situation in 
which he was placed, when this extraordinary sight 
greeted the eyes of his amazed consort. So absolute 
and so tenacious were the rules of Germany on all 
things that concerned the respect due to rank, that 
even one as little troubled by ambition as the meek 


Ulrike, had great difficulty in believing her senses 
when she beheld Heinrich Frey thus suddenly ele 
vated to a seat of honor in the presence of a Count 
of Leiningen. 

"Nay, enter without fear, my good Ulrike," said 
Emich, graciously; "thy worthy husband and I do 
but indulge in mutual friendship, while my varlets 
prepare an unworthy banquet. Do not think to 
break our discourse." 

" I only hesitate, noble Emich, at seeing Heinrich 
Frey preferred to that seat, while the Lord of Har- 
tenburg stands, like one of humble birth, at his 
side !" 

" Touch not the matter, meine Frau," said the 
husband condescendingly. " Thou art a loving con 
sort, and art well enough amid thy sex, and in ques 
tions that belong to thy breeding; but in an affair, 
like this, between mein Herr Graf and me, thou 
mayest only mar what thou canst not mend." 

" By the life of the princely Karl ! master Hein 
rich, you do insufficient justice to Ulrike s discern 
ment! Were mine own Ermengarde among us, 
thou shouldst see that we prize thy loving wife little 
less than we esteem thee. But it were better that 
we inquire of Ulrike the occasion of her visit, 
before we attempt to school her on matters of de 

Though so rough and unnurtured on many of the 
points that are now deemed essential even to an 
indifferent civilization, Emich had a quick interest 
for the perception of character, and possessed as 
much of the refinement that marks a superior con 
dition in life, as the state of the age and the situation 
of his own country permitted. There can be no 
greater mistake than to imagine that mere nominal 
rank is any pledge for a correspondent degree of 
refinement, since every thing is relative in this world, 
and where the base of the pillar is rude and little 


polished, it would be a violation of all architectural 
keeping, to expect a capital of a different style. 
Thus it is that we, without any social orders but 
those of convention, are struck with so many gla 
ring discrepancies among people whose patricians, 
Having studied all that is factitious and plausible in 
breeding, are still deficient in the grand essentials of 
reason and humanity, simply because the roots of 
the society, of which they are only the more lux 
uriant branches, are planted in the soil of ignorance 
and debasement. The Count of Hartenburg had 
possessed ample opportunities of witnessing how 
much the intellectual qualities of the Burgomaster s 
wife were superior to those of her husband ; and he 
had sufficient discrimination and experience to be 
quite aware of the importance of conciliating such 
an ally in advancing his own particular views. It 
was in this spirit, therefore, that he ventured on so 
blunt a reproof of Heinrich s superciliousness, and 
volunteered the compliment to the spouse ; probably 
hazarding the latter, from an intimate conviction 
that most husbands are content to hear eulogies on 
those who are so completely in their power as their 
own wives. 

" Since it is your honorable pleasure, Herr Count, 
for God s sake let the woman come in," answered 
Heinrich, still, however, without changing an attitude 
so soothing to his self-esteem. " If she should see 
me seated in a presence in which it would much bet 
ter become me to kneel, why it may help to show 
that God hath given her a companion that is not 
altogether without the world s esteem, little as he 
may merit it. Enter freely, therefore, good Ulrike, 
since it is my lord s pleasure ; but presume not on 
his condescension to me, which is rather a mark of 
great love for our town, than any matter connected 
with domestic life. " 



" In all that the high-born Count hath done honof 
to any of us, whether as of Deurckheim, or as his 
unworthy neighbors, I desire respectfully to be 
grateful," returned the wife, who, by this time, had 
recovered from her surprise, ana who now advanced 
farther into the narrow room, with the modest self- 
possession which ordinarily distinguished her man 
ner : " If I do not come amiss, I crave to be heard 
of both, in a matter that toucheth nearly a mother s 
heart ; and a matter, as it is of Heinrich Frey s 
child I would fain speak, that I trust may not be in 
different to my lord the Count." 

" Were it of mine own little Kunigunde, the sub 
ject should not be more welcome !" said the noble. 
" Speak freely then, gentle Ulrike, and with the same 
simplicity thou wouldest use were it only to thy 
husband s ear." 

" Thou hearest, woman ! mein Herr Graf enters, 
as it were, into all our tribulations and happiness, 
an he were no other than a brother. So mince not 
the matter, but deal frankly with us ; though I ad 
monish thee not to push thy words to all the famil 
iarity of household discourse." 

"As it is of a subject so near, I pray leave to close 
the door, before more is uttered." 

The words of Ulrike were cut short by a hasty 
gesture of approbation from her husband, and by 
the Count himself, who, with more of the considera 
tion and manner of a gentleman, performed the de 
sired office with his own hands, thus admitting the 
wife, as it were, into the very cabinet of their secret 



You would be another Penelope: yet ifeey 
Say, all the yarn she spun, in Ulysses absence, did 
But fill Ithaca full of moths." 


WHEPT Ulrike found herself fairly closeted with 
the Count and her husband, and was quietly seated 
on the stool which the former, spite of the latter s 
protestations to the contrary, had insisted on her 
taking, she cast her mild eyes about her, with that 
expressive and touching appeal that a woman is apt 
to make, when she feels called on to act as the ad 
viser, if not the guardian, of him whom nature in 
tended and the law presumes, is both able and will 
ing to discharge those offices for her. Notwithstand 
ing Heinrich s obstinacy and masculine swaggering, 
many occasions had arrived, in the course of their 
matrimonial life, to produce a latent conviction in 
both, that the order of things was a little inverted, 
as respects judgment and moral authority, by incli 
ning one to lean, though with but an indifferent grace, 
where he should have supported ; and tempting the 
other, at times, to overstep her sex s duties, though 
it was always done with an intuitive perception of 
her sex s seemliness awd means, 

" For this condescension I thank my Lord Emich, 
and thee, Heinrich," commenced the thoughtful ma 
tron ; " for it is not, at all times, advisable for the 
wife to intrude unbidden even to her husband s 

A significant ejaculation, which might almost 
merit a coarser term, was the manner in which the 
Burgomaster expressed his assent, during the brief 
pause that succeeded this excuse of Ulrike. The 
more courteous host bowed with sufficient respect, 
though, even by his manner, it was evident he was 


getting impatient to know the real motive of the in 

" We are too well pleased to receive thee, to re 
member the usages and rights of manhood," an 
swered the latter, with a kindness of manner that 
was insensibly extorted by the winning and feminine 
qualities of her he addressed, and which, in some 
degree, softened the pretensions of his language 
" Proceed with thy matter, for none can be more 
ready to listen." 

" Thou hearest, good Ulrike ! the Herr Count is 
willing to remember thou art a Burgomaster s con 
sort ; and, as he is pleased to say, we are truly im 
patient to be let into the cause of thy sudden visit." 

The thoughtful Ulrike received this encourage 
ment like one accustomed to be treated, in some 
measure, as a being inferior in capacity and force 
to her husband, but not without a shade like that 
which is produced by unmerited humiliation. Smi 
ling and few, even in early and attractive youth, 
nad so sweet an expression, when her countenance 
thus gleamed, whether it were in pleasure, or in 
melancholy smiling, as it might be, partly in female 
gentleness, and partly in sadness, she commenced 
the purport of her visit, coming, however, to her 
true object with great reserve and with the caution 
of a woman accustomed to influence, rather than to 

" For the great kindness and condescension of the 
Herr Emich, in behalf of Heinrich Frey, and of all 
that are his, no one is more grateful than I," she 
said ; " if I may now seem to trouble him with the 
cone erns of a family on which he has already so 
freely lavished favors" 

" And friendship, good Ulrike." 

" And friendship, since you permit me, noble 
Count, to use the word but, if I now seem to tres 
pass beyond breeding, by troubling your mind with 


ft concern that is so remote from your own interests, 
I trust you will remember a mother s tenderness, 
and think of the highborn Ermengarde, whose anxi 
ety for her own offspring may furnish some excuse 
for that I feel for mine." 

" Hath aught befell the blooming Meta ]" 

" God s my life !" exclaimed the troubled Hein- 
rich, abandoning his much-prized seat, in the sud 
denness of paternal alarm. " Hath the wench suf 
fered from the over-rich eels of the Rhine? or is 
she massed to death by these accursed monks?" 

" Our child is well in the body, and, the blessed 
Maria be praised! she is pure and innocent in mind," 
returned Ulrike. " I have little cause for aught but 
gratitude in either of these behalfs ; but, she is of 
an age when girlish fancies become unsettled, and 
the flexible female spirit seeks impressions from 
others than those whom nature hath made its guar 

"This is some of thy usual incomprehensibilities, 
good woman, and language that is not easily under 
stood by any but thyself. The noble Graf hath no 
leisure to hunt up new ideas to maintain a discourse 
in subtleties. Had the girl indeed tasted too freely 
of the rare dish which the honest Burgomaster of 
Mannheim so kindly sent me, as I at first feared, no 
doubt the means to cure might be found in Harten- 
burg ; but thou askest too much, wife of mine, when 
thouwouldest have any but thine own husband enter 
into all the cunning niceties that sometimes beset thy 

"Nay, Master Heinrich, here may be more ur 
gent matter than thou thinkest : thy dame is not a 
woman whose opinions are to be neglected. Wilt 
proceed with thy recital, good Ulrike ?" 

" Our child is at that period of life," continued the 
mother, too much accustomed to the manner of her 
husband to permit it to divert her thoughts from 


their main intention "when the young of every 
sort begin to think of the future. It is a principle 
that God hath implanted, Herr Emich, and therefore 
it is for good ; and we, who have watched over the 
infancy of our offspring with so much anxiety, have 
trained their youth with so much care, and have so 
often trembled for their noon-time, must, sooner or 
later, consent to loosen the sweet ties that bind us 
to our second selves, in order that the great ends of 
the creation shall be accomplished." 

" Umph !" ejaculated Heinrich. 

" Nay, gentle Ulrike," said the Count, " maternal 
love hath drawn this picture in stronger colors than 
may be necessary. When the time for matrimony 
comes, God s my life ! daughter of thine and honest 
Heinrich Frey, need not wear maiden s coif a day 
longer than is necessary to do suitable reverence to 
the church. Here have I youths, out of number, 
that look to the house of Leiningen for grace, any 
one of whom would be glad to wive with the dam 
sel I should name. There is young Friedrich Zant- 
zinger, the orphan of my last deputy in the villages 
of the plain; he is a lad that would gladly do harder 
service to gain my love." 

"When "old Friedrich left the boy fatherless, he 
left him without a penny," drily rejoined the Burgo 

" That is a fault which might be mended ; but 1 
have others that can be named. What thinkest thou 
of the eldest son of my Heidelburg attorney, worthy 
Conrad Walter?" 

" Curse the knave ! I hate him from my heart." 

" Thou art warm, Master Heinrich, against one 
that I both trust and favor." 

" I cry your mercy, Herr Graf; but a sudden 
rising of the bile, at the mention of the fellow s name, 
got the better of respect," answered the Burgomas 
ter, with more moderation, who, as he saw by the 


owering look of Emich s brow, the necessity of 
explanation, continued, with rather more openness 
than he might have thought necessary under circum 
stances of less urgency: "Perhaps the high-born 
Count was never possessed of the matter of our late 
controversy ?" 

" Nay, I pretend not to judge my friends, " 
" Let but my lord condescend to hear me, and I 
leave him arbiter between us. It is well known to 
you, Herr Emich, that collections were made, and 
charity asked, in behalf of the peasants who suffered, 
the past year, from the sudden rising of the Rhine. 
Among others, the good Christians of our town were 
importuned for succor; and, for none will deny 
that it was a sad visitation of Providence, we gave 
freely as became our several means. To prevent 
improper uses of the money, in all cases of liberal 
donations, the sealed bond of the donor, at a near 
day, was asked in preference to the silver ; and mine 
was granted for the fair sum of twelve crowns, as 
a poor donation suited to my hopes and station. It 
so fell out, Herr Graf, that those charged with the 
distribution had occasion for their money before the 
instruments were up ; and they sent agents among 
us, in order to enter into such negotiations as the 
cases might need. Gold was scarce at the moment ; 
and because, in regaining my bond, I had a heedful 
regard to mine own interests, the misdealing Conrad 
would fain transport me, like a thief, before the au 
thorities of Heidelburg, to undergo the penalties of 
a usurer. Son of his shall never call me father, 
with your gracious leave, nobly-born Count of Lei- 
ningen !" 

"This truly offereth some impediment to the 
affair; but, failing of young Conrad, I have others 
that may be accounted worthy of this advantage. 
So put thy maternal heart at ease, good Ulrike, and 
trust to my active friendship to dispose of the girl." 


" The Burgomaster s consort had been a patien 
listener during the short but characteristic digression 
of her husband. Trained in the opinions of the 
times, she did not possibly endure all that a mother 
and a wife, of equal native sensibility, might now 
suffer at so evident a debasement of her sex ; but as 
the laws of nature are permanent, neither did sh0 
escape a pang of wounded feeling as she heard the 
different expedients that were so hastily devised for 
the future disposal of one who formed her chief hap 
piness in life. There was less of that hectic color, 
which commonly gave a lustre to eyes that were 
by nature rather melancholy than bright, and her 
voice was fuller of emotion than before, as she con 

" For all this heed of me and mine, I again thank 
the Herr Count ; but there is a power that is stronger 
with the young than the counsel of the experienced, 
or even than the wishes of their friends," she said. 
" My intent, in intruding myself unbidden into this 
secret conference, was to say that Meta had listened 
to the voice of her sympathies more than to the 
usages of her class, and chosen for herself." 

The Count and Heinrich Frey stared at the speaker 
in mute surprise, for neither fully comprehended her 
meaning ; while Ulrike herself, one of her objects be 
ing accomplished, in having made this long-dreaded 
declaration in the presence of a person able to re 
press the anger of her husband, sate silent, inwardly 
trembling for the consequences. 

" Wilt thou explain the meaning of thy worthy 
consort, Herr Heinrich 1" abruptly asked the Count. 

" Zum Henker ! you ask me to perform an office, 
Lord Count, that might better fit a Benedictine, or 
a clerk. When Ulrike, who is an excellent and 
obedient companion in the main, once gets upon the 
stilts of fancy, I never pretend to be able to raise 
an idea to the level of her shoe-buckle. Go to ! thou 


hast well spoken, wife of mine ; and it will now be 
better to seek our child, lest yonder cavalier of 
Rhodes be oiling her ears with the unction of flat 

"Nay, by my house s honors! but I will know 
more of this matter, thy fair and virtuous consort 
consenting, Master Heinrich. Wilt explain thyself 
freely, dame ?" 

Whether it be from the instinct of weakness and 
delicacy, or only the fruit of precepts constantly 
inculcated, a virtuous woman rarely admits the ex 
istence of the sentiment of love, either in herself or 
in any that is dear to her, without a feeling of shame, 
and possibly not without an intuitive knowledge 
that she is conceding some of the vantage-ground 
of her sex s privileges. 

This feeling was apparent in Ulrike, by the slow 
but complete suffusion of her cheek, and by the man 
ner in which her looks avoided those of Emich, spite 
of the self-possession and calm of her years. 

" I would merely say, Herr Emich," she replied, 
" that Meta, like all who are young and innocent, 
hath fancied an image of perfection, and that she 
hath found an original for her picture in a youth of 
the Jaegerthal. While of this mind, she cannot, in 
honesty or in maidenly respect, become the bride 
of any other than him she loves." 

" The affair grows clearer," returned the Count, 

smiling like one who took no very deep interest in 

v the matter; "and it is as well explained as heart 

could wish at least, heart of the youth in question. 

What thinkest thou of this, Herr Burgomaster? 

The comprehension of Heinrich Frey could not 
altogether misconceive so plain an explanation, and, 
since the moment when his wife had ceased speaking, 
he sat regarding her mild but troubled countenance, 
with Darted lips and open eyes, like a man that first 


learns some unlooked-for intelligence of great mo 

"Herr Teufel!" exclaimed Heinrich, taking up 
the last words of the Baron, unconscious of the 
disrespect of what he did "Art talking of our own 
natural-born child?" 

" Of none other. In whom else have I this mother 
ly affection? or for what other can I feel this deep 
concern V 9 

"Dost mean that Meta my daughter, Meta 
Frey hath inclination for son of woman, except it 
may be the natural love and reverence she beareth 
her own father ? that the girl hath truant and free 

" I say nothing to give this opinion of Meta my 
daughter, Meta," returned Ulrike, with womanly 
dignity. " Our child has done no more than listened 
to the secret whisperings of nature; and, in yielding 
her affections to a youth whom she hath often seen, 
and long known, she hath merely paid an homage 
to merit, that the most virtuous are the most apt to 

" Go to, Ulrike ! Thou art well enough among 
thy household, and a woman for whom I have es 
teem ; but these visions with which thou art so often 
troubled, give thee an air, at times, of being of less 
discernment than thou mayest fairly claim to be. 
Excuse the dame, Herr Count; for, though her own 
nusband, and a little weak on the subject of her in 
firmities perhaps, there is not a more thrifty manager, 
a more faithful spouse, or a kinder mother in the 

" Nay, thou little need say this to me ! None 
know the worth of Ulrike better ; and, I may add, 
few respect her so much. It were well to hear 
further of this matter, Heinrich ; for, to treat thee in 
candor, there may lay more beneath this opening 
<rf the excellent wife, than is at first apparent 


Our Meta hath seen the qualities of some worthy 
youth sooner than they have struck the eye of her 
quick-sighted father, thou wouldst say. Is it not so, 

" I would say that the heart of my child is so 
closely bound in that of another, as to leave little 
hope of happiness, should her matrimonial duties 
teach her to forget him." 

" Thou thinkest then, good dame, that the young 
fancies of a female, when once indulged, are not to 
be removed by the offices of wife and mother 1 
that a caprice of the imagination is stronger than a 
vow made at the altar?" 

Though the eyes of both the Count and the Burgo 
master were riveted on the fine and speaking coun 
tenance of Ulrike, the volume of eloquent nature, 
that was thus opened to their observation, proved 
little better than a blank. Strong and dramatic exhi 
bitions of feeling require but little interpretation for 
the dullest faculties ; but few indeed are they who 
are capable of comprehending the secret workings 
of a spirit chastened and restrained as that of a 
virtuous, but unhappily paired woman. There is. 
perhaps, no one aspect of human nature more com 
mon-place, or more easily understood, than that 
which is hourly offered by a worldly-minded and 
capricious fair. She runs her little career, seeming 
ly as erratic as a comet, though, in truth, her course 
is always to be calculated on the infallible principles 
of vanity and selfishness ; but no secret is more her 
metically sealed against impertinent and vulgar 
curiosity, than the elevated sentiments which sustain 
tne suffering and silent female who is truly instinct 
with the high qualities of her sex. 

We are no railer at the domination of man ; for 
we are persuaded that he who would wish to trans 
form the being that was created to be his solacer 
and companion his guide in moral darkness, and 

208 THE HtilDENMAUElt 

his sharer in sorrow as in joy into a worldly com 
petitor, changing love and confidence to rivalry 
and contention, is but miserably instructed in that 
sublime ordinance of nature, which has thus sepa 
rated the highest order of its creation into two great 
classes, so replete with mutual consolation and hap 

Had the wife of the Burgomaster arisen, and, in 
chosen terms, made an appeal to the sympathies of 
her companions, in which language should unite 
with manner to produce an effect, she might have 
been understood, as the every-day reader under 
stands all such pictures of female character; but 
where she sat, silent, suffering, and meek, she was 
completely concealed from any means of compre 
hension possessed by either. Her eye did not 
kindje, for long and patient subordination had taught 
her to submit to the misconstructions of her husband; 
nor scarcely did the faint color of her cheek 
deepen, since the load at her heart counteracted 
the natural impulses of pride and resentment. 

" I think, Lord Count, that when an innocent and 
youthful female heart yields to a power that nature 
perhaps has made irresistible," she said, "it, at 
least, merits to be treated tenderly. Meta hath 
few fancies of the kind you mention; and the attach 
ment she feels, though doubtless deepened by those 
colors which the least experienced in the truths 
of life are the most apt to paint, is but the natural 
consequence of much association, and of great de 
serving on the part of the young man." 

" This is getting to be plain, Herr Emich," said 
Heinrich Frey, pithily, " and must needs be looked 
to. Wilt condescend to name the youth thou meanest 

" Berchthold Hintermayer." 

" Berchthold Teufelstein !" exclaimed the Burgo 
master, laughing, though there was something lik 


a secret consciousness of danger in the very manner 
in which he gave loose to his merriment. " A pen 
niless boy is truly a fit husband for child of mine !" 

The quiet, blue eye of Ulrike was fastened on her 
nusband ; but she averted it with sensitive haste, 
lest it might betray that she was thinking of the time 
when her own father had consented to her marriage 
with one nearly as poor, merely because the pene 
tration of the parent had discovered those qualities 
of prudence and gainful industry in his townsman, 
which after-experience so fully developed. 

" He is not rich, Heinrich," was her answer ; " but 
he is worthy : and why need a chill be thrown on 
the heart of Meta, for the desire of that which she 
already hath in sufficient plenty 1" 

" Hear you this, Herr Emich 1 My wife is lifting 
the curtain of privacy before your respected eyes, 
with a freedom for which I could fain cry mercy." 

" Berchthold is a youth I love," gravely observed 
the Count. 

" In that case, I shall say nothing disrespectful of 
the lad, who is a worthy forester, and in all things 
suited to his service in the family of Hartenburg ; 
still, he is but a forester, and a very penniless one. 
I had not thought to dispose of the girl so soon, for 
a little maidenly leisure does none of the sex injury, 
Lord Count ; but as she hath her head set upon this 
Berchthold, it may be well to wrap it in a matron s 
coif, by way of filling it with ideas more suited to 
her hopes." 

" The remedy may prove fatal, Heinrich !" mildly 
observed Ulrike, raising her tearful eye to the ob 
stinate features of the Burgomaster 

"Nay, I ought to know the constitution of the 
family ; what has so well succeeded with the mother, 
cannot harm the child." 

The wife did not reply. But Emich of Harten 
burg had been deeply interested by her gentle 


winning manner, for he had watched her counte 
nance closely, and understood the womanly effort 
by which the appearance of calm was preserved. 
Turning to the Burgomaster, he laid a hand on his 
shoulder, with a friendly smile, and said 

" Herr Heinrich, thou hast a fair and gentle con 
sort; but, I think, too, thou hast scarce less faith in 
me than in thy wife. Give us leave ; I would fain 
reason this matter with Ulrike, without the aid of 
thy influence." 

" A thousand thanks for the honor to me and mine, 
high-born Count ! As to faith, I would leave the 
dame a year on Limburg-hill, without other thought 
than for her convenience ; for none know the worth 
of Ulrike better, though she is so difficult to com 
prehend when her fancy is moulting. Now kiss me, 
dame, and prithee do no dishonor to the Count s 

Thus saying, Heinrich Frey placed a hearty kiss 
on the soft cheek that the obedient Ulrike freely 
offered, and left his wife alone with the noble, without 
other thought than of the high distinction that was 
conferred on his name. The manner in which he 
prized the notice of the Baron was sufficiently mani 
fested by the readiness with which he communicated 
the circumstance that Emich and his consort were 
closeted, on an affair touching the interests of the 
family of Frey, to all who would listen to his tale. 



Ah me ! for aught that ever I could read, 

Could ever hear by tales or history, 

The course of true love never did run smooth !" 


WHEN the door was closed on the husband, the 
Count turned to the wife, and continued the dis 

"I love young Berchthold Hintermayer, good 
Ulrike," he said, " and would gladly be of aid in 
this affair, which, I see plainly, thou hast much at 

" The mother would be unnatural that had not 
anxiety for the happiness of her child. In youth, 
Lord Count, we gaze before us, filling the dim ascent 
with scenes drawn after our wishes, and peopling 
the world with the beings that we deem most neces 
sary to our hopes ; but when we have reached the 
eminence, whence the commencement and the end 
of life can both be plainly seen, do we first find 
truth. I am as little disposed as another to venture 
rashly on a union that has no better security for its 
fruits than a blind and feverish passion, that will be 
certain to consume itself by its own fierceness ; but, 
on the other hand, none who have known life as I, 
can be disposed to consider lightly those resem 
blances of taste and opinions, those gentle touches 
of character and disposition, that are most likely to 
conduce to wedded love." 

" Thou art esteemed lucky in thine own consort 
ing, dame 1" 

" God hath much blessed me in many mercies 
the question is of Meta, my Lord Count." 

Ulrike, spite of herself, had changed color; but, 
aided by the manner of matronly reserve she im 
mediately assumed, the little emotion passed with 


Emich as no more than a display of feminine reserve, 
that was intended to repress a curiosity he had no 
title to indulge. 

" The question is of Meta, in sooth," he answered ; 
" and, by Saint Benedict ! the youth shall not want 
for friendly and free support. But favor should have 
favor s reward. If I give into thy humor in this 
concern of thy daughter s marriage, good Ulrike 
in return, I expect of thee a service on which I 
scarce lay less stress." 

1 he matron raised her eyes to the countenance 
of her companion, in surprise. One who had not so 
uniformly preserved her own self-respect, might 
have doubted of what she heard ; but the look of 
the Burgomaster s wife merely conveyed a meaning 
of curiosity and innocence. 

" You will deserve far more than I can bestow, 
Herr Count, should you do aught to secure the hap 
piness of Meta." 

" Fair wife," continued Emich, seating himself, 
and taking her hand, with the freedom which his 
superior rank and the usages of the country allowed, 
thou knowest the manner in which these Benedic 
tines have so long vexed our valley ; and, being so 
deeply in the confidence of the honest Heinrich, thou 
must have suspected that, wearied of their insolence 
and exactions, we have seriously bethought us of 
the means by which to reduce them to the modesty 
that becometh their godly professions, and which 
might better justify their pretensions ?" 

Emich paused, and sat intently regarding the face 
of his quiet listener. He had unwittingly touched 
upon the very subject that had been the chief in 
ducement with the Burgomaster s wife for intruding 
upon the privacy of the conspirators. She had long 
suspected their intentions ; and, though she felt deep 
care for the future lot of Meta, and had gladly 
availed herself of a favorable occasion to break 


the ice on a subject that, sooner or later, must be 
disclosed, her real object was to warn Heinrich 
against the probable consequences of the plot. In 
this disposition, then, she heard the Count with se 
cret pleasure, and prepared herself to reply, in the 
manner she had long meditated. 

"All that you say, Herr Count," she answered, 
"has more than once crossed my mind; and deeply 
have I grieved fhat those I so love and honor should 
thus meditate injury to the altars of God plan des 
perate devices to interrupt his praise." 

" How ! dost thou call the whinings of these knaves 
praise of aught but their own hypocrisy ?" interrupt 
ed Emich. " Are they not the instigators of most 
of our sins, by their example ? the parents of all 
the contention that troubles the neighborhood? 
Consider, good Ulrike, that heaven is not a close 
into which souls are to be driven blindfolded ; but 
that we, who are of the flock, have at least the 
right, as we have the means, of judging whether 
the shepherds are fit for their office, or not." 

" And should they prove unequal to, or unworthy 
of their duties, where do we find authority to do 
them harm ?" 

"God s my life! good wife; are our swords 
nothing? Are a noble name, an ancient and high 
descent, a long-standing claim to command, and a 
stout heart, nothing ?" 

"Arrayed against the Almighty, they count as 
the leaves of your own forest, when fluttering in a 
gale ; less than the flakes of snow that drive, in 
winter, against the battlements of your strong castle. 
Limburg is reared in honor of God; and he that 
raises a hand against the sacred walls, will be apt to 
repent the rashness in woe. If there are unworthy 
ministers at its altars, there are also those that are 
worthy; and, were it not so, the mission is too high 


to be sullied by any frailty of those who abuse their 

The Count was disturbed; for Ulrike spoke earnest 
ly, and in a voice of sweet persuasion. He leaned 
his chin upon a hand, as a man that pondered well 
on the hazards of his enterprise. 

" What thinkest thou, Ulrike, of this brother of 
Wittenberg " he at length asked. " Could we but 
fairly make him out honest and wis^, ecclesiastical 
authority for lowering; the pride of Limburg might 
be had!" 

" I am one of those who think Brother Luther 
honest; I am also one of those who think him mis 
taken: but even he is far from urging to deeds of 

" By Saint Benedict ! woman, thou hast had con 
verse with Father Arnolph, touching this question. 
Echo does not answ r er sound more faithfully than 
thou repeatest the sentiments of the Prior." 

" It is not strange that they who love God should 
feel and speak alike in a matter affecting his honor. 
I have said naught to Father Arnolph, nor to any 
other of the Abbey, of your designs ; for it is not 
easy for Ulrike Frey to forget she is both wife and 
mother. But I have prayed often, that the hearts of 
those who contemplate this dangerous sacrilege 
may be softened; and that, for their own safety, 
they may yet see the evil of their plot. Believe me, 
Count, the Dread Being who is worshipped in Lim- 
burg, will not forget to avenge himself of those who 
despise his power !" 

"Thou art certain, Ulrike, that thy opinions have 
weight with me, for since childhood have I known 
and respected thy wisdom. Nay, had there not 
been want of those claims which birth can alone 
give, thou wouldst now be sitting in this castle its 
mistress, and not a guest. The self-denial which 
was practised, in order to do rny father pleasure 


cost me much pain for many years; nor did I rightly 
regain my freedom, until the birth of my eldest 
born turned my hopes towards posterity." 

It is seldom woman hears the acknowledgment 
of her influence with the stronger sex, without 
secret satisfaction. As there had been nothing in 
the attachment to which the Count alluded, to alarm 
her principles or to offend her delicacy, Ulrike 
listened to this reference to the feelings and incidents 
of their younger days, with a smile that produced 
an effect on her gentle features, which resembled the 
melancholy light which illuminated the chapel of 
the religious community in question; or which was 
mild, placid, and, if we may be permitted an ex 
pression so vague, tinged with hues of the past. 

" We are no longer young, Emich," she answered, 
withdrawing her hand, under a keen impulse of its 
propriety " and that which thou speakest belongs 
to a former age. But if thou dost, in sooth, enter 
tain this opinion of my discretion, I have never 
said aught of thee but in thy honor. There were 
other reasons than the late Count s will, why I could 
not listen to thy suit, as thou wert then informed ; 
for we are none of us the controllers of those senti 
ments which so much depend on taste or accident" 

" By the sainted eleven thousand of Koeln ! Hein- 
rich Frey was scarce a youth to do this disadvan 
tage to the heir of my line and name !" 

" Heinrich Frey received my troth, as the nobl 
Ermengarde received thine, Herr von Hartenburg," 
answered Ulrike, with the composure of one whose 
feelings had never been interested in the refusal to 
which she alluded, and with the dignity of a woman 
sensitively alive to her husband s character. " By 
Heaven s favor, we are both happier than if wedded 
either above or beneath our hopes. But if thou 
couldst deny thyself this boon for such, in thy 
voung fancies, didst thou believe mv hand to 


oblige thy father of earth, wilt thou still defy him 
of Heaven, to gratify a longing less excusable ?" 

" Go to, Ulrike ; thou pressest me out of reason , 
1 know not fairly that I even meditate the enterprise 
thou meanest." 

" Or, in other language, thou art not yet decided 
to commit the sacrilege. Before thy hand strikes 
the irretrievable blow, Herr Count, hear one that, in 
thy youth, thou professed to love, and who yet re 
members thy preference, with grateful kindness." 

" Thou art more indulgent as a matron than as a 
maid! This is the first word of pity for all the 
sorrow thou causedst my youth, that hath ever es 
caped thee !" 

" Pity is a term it would ill become Ulrike Hait- 
zinger to use to Emich von Leiningen. I said grati 
tude, Herr Count ; for the woman that pretendeth 
not to feel this sentiment towards the honorable 
youth that has preferred her to all others of her 
sex, payeth an indifferent compliment to her own 
heart. I never disavowed that thy suit gave me 
both gratification and sorrow gratification, that 
one of thy hopes could find sufficient in me to justi 
fy thy choice ; sorrow, that thou wert necessarily 

"And had our births been nearer an equality, 
gentle Ulrike, hadst thou, like me, come of noble 
parentage, or I, like thee, been of more humble 
origin, couldst thou, in sooth, have found, in thy 
heart, the excuse for a different answer ?" 

" We are here to discuss other matters, Herr von 
Hartenburg, than these recollections of childish 

" God s my life ! Callest thou the pain of disappoint 
ed affection a childish sorrow? Thou wert ever 
tranquil in temper, and too much disposed to in 
difference on the subject of any warmth of heart, 
beyond the cold duties of family regard." 


* This may be my fault, if you will, Count Emich, 
for* I esteem it an advantage to feel strongest where 
duty most directs the affections." 

" I remember thy final answer, made through thy 
friend young Berchthold s mother I owe the lad 
no grace for the boon, were justice done but thou 
answered, that the daughter of a Burgomaster was 
unfit to be the partner of a Baron ; and thou prayedst 
me to render all duty to the Count my father, that 
his blessmg might lighten the disappointment Now, 
were the truth known, that reply cost thee no more 
than a simple refusal to one of thy maidens of some 
trifling grace !" 

" Were the truth known, Emich, it would tell a 
different tale. Thou wert then young, and, though 
violent and hot-headed, not without many manly 
virtues ; and thou greatly overratest the power of a 
thoughtful girl, if thou supposest she would gladly 
give pain, where she has received naught but es 

" And had I been thy neighbor s child or wert 
thou the daughter of some equal of the Empire ? " 

" In that case, Lord Count, the answer would have 
been the same," said the other, firmly, though her 
countenance evidently lost its tranquil brightness in 
a transient cloud : " The heart of Ulrike Haitzinger 
spoke in that reply, as well as her prudence." 

" God s truth ! thou art of cutting simplicity !" 
cried the Count, rising abruptly, and losing the ex 
pression of gentleness that the recollection of his 
better days and youthful feelings had given his fea 
tures, in their usual hardened character. " Thou 
forgettest, Frau Frey, that I am a poor Count of 
Leiningen !" 

" If I have failed in meet respect," returned the 
mild Ulrike, " I am now reminded of the fault, and 
will sin no more " 



" Nay, I \i ould say naught unkind or ungentle 
but thou bruised my spirit, with a sore answer. We 
were conversing of the accursed monks, too, and 
blood gets hot at the mention of their names. Thou 
thinkest, then, my excellent neighbor, that, as Chris 
tians, we are bound to submit to all the exaction* 
of these reverend knaves, and that to presume to 
right ourselves, is flying in the face of Heaven s 
authority V 

" You put the case in your own humor, Count. 
I have said naught of abject forbearance, or of un 
necessary submission. If the Limburg monks are 
forgetful of their vows, the question is of their own 
safety : as for us, we have to look that we do no 
thing wrongful of itself, or nothing that may be ac 
counted disrespectful to Him we worship" 

"Prithee, good Ulrike," interrupted Emich, resum 
ing his seat, in the familiar manner he had used at 
the commencement of the dialogue, " let us converse, 
in freedom, of this inclination of thy child. I love 
young Berchthold, and would fain do him service, 
were the means offering ; but I greatly fear we 
shall have difficulty in bringing Heinrich to a com 
plying state of mind. * 

" The apprehension of his refusal hath caused me 
much uneasiness, Herr von Hartenburg," returned 
the tender mother ; " for the Burgomaster is not one 
of those who change their opinions readily. The 
over-zealous persuasion of friends increases his faith 
in himself, at times, instead of softening those reso 
lutions which the wisest of us are apt to form hastily 
and without thought." 

" This quality of thy excellent consort hath not 
escaped me. But Heinrich Frey was wived so hap 
pily himself, and with so little claim to riches on his 
own part, that he should not, in reason, bear too 
heavily on a youth that might have known better 
days, but for a hard fortune befalling his parents. 


He that hath been poor, should have respect for 
poverty in others." 

" I fear that such is not the working of human 
nature," answered the thoughtful wife, nearly un 
conscious of what she uttered. " Our experience 
in life would prove that they who have risen show 
the least tolerance for those who tarry in the rear ; 
and, as none prize the gifts of rank and consequence 
so much as they to whom they are novelties, we 
ought not to expect the successful man too soon to 
forget the longings he felt when in adversity, nor 
him to whom honors are new, to look too closely 
into their vanity." 

" Nay, Heinrich is not so young in consideration, 
or so new to fortune, as to be classed with these." 

"Heinrich!" exclaimed the matron, across whose 
chaste brow there stole a crimson suffusion, that 
resembled the flush of even upon the snowy peaks 
of the Alps " There is not question, here, of Hein 
rich Frey !" 

The Count smiled till the mustachios curled upon 
his brown cheeks. 

" Thou art right," he answered courteously ; " it 
is in Berchthold and Meta that we are most inte 
rested. I think I see the means of accomplishing 
all we wish in their behalf, and means that offer so 
readily as to wear the air of being a gift of Provi 

" They are only the more welcome for their char 
acter " 

" Thou knowest, Ulrike, that I am greatly bur- 
thened with charges that lay heavily on all of my rank. 
Ermengarde hath most of the qualities of her station, 
and a love of splendor that is costly ; besides, this 
outfit of my young heir, who travels with the Em 
peror, hath much drained me of means, of late; 
else would I offer, of pure love for thee and thine 
that which would make the connexion acceptable to 


Hemrich. In this strait, borne down, as we all are 
by the war, and saddled with the cost of keeping 
on foot so many men in Hartenburg. I see no other 
present means than that I have just mentioned." 

" Or have not mentioned ; for, in the desire to 
prove your inability to serve the youth, nothing hath 
yet been said of this favorable chance offered by 

" I cry thy mercy ! Thou hast rightly judged me, 
Ulrike, for I feel it a reproach to be able to do nothing 
for one I so esteem." 

" Put no undue meaning on my words," interrupted 
the matron, smiling like one who wished to reassure 
her companion. " It has never entered my thoughts 
that the Counts of Leiningen are bound to portion 
all who serve them, according to their several hopes. 
It would lighten the heaviest purse in the Palatinate, 
Herr Emich, to furnish an equal marriage-gift to 
that which may be the share of Meta Frey." 

" None know this better than I. Heinrich and I 
have often discoursed of the affair, and I could fain 
wish there existed no inequality of rank but this is 
idle, and we will talk only of Berchthold and his 
hopes. Thou are aware, Ulrike, that there are 
heavy issues between me and the brotherhood con 
cerning certain dues, not only in the valley, but on 
the plain, and that the contest fairly settled in my 
favor will much increase my revenues. Now were 
this unhappy dissension decided as I could wish, it 
would not only be in my power, but it would become 
my wish, to bestow such grace on all my principal 
followers, and on none so much as on Berchthold, 
as might leave a favorable opinion of my bounty. 
We want but this affair rightly settled to possess the 
means of winning Heinrich to our desires." 

" Could this be honestly done, my blessing on him 
that shall effect it !" 

" I rejoice to hear thee say this, good Ulrike. 


Thou, of all others, mayest be most useful in the 
matter. Heinrich and I have well nigh decided on 
the fitness of disturbing the monks in their riotous 

" The words are strong, when applied to profess 
ed Benedictines !" 

" By the holy Magi ! they are more than merited. 
Here, has not the day twice turned since I had Boni- 
facius himself weltering in wine beneath the roof of 
Hartenburg, an he had been a roisterer of a sub 
urb ! Bonifacius, Limburg s Abbot, have I seen in 
this unfit condition, Frau Ulrike, within mine own 
good castle walls !" 

" And in thine own good castle company, Herr 

" Dost thou make no difference between Baron 
and Monk ? Am I a sworn professor of godliness, 
a shaven crown, or one that looketh to be accounted 
better than his fellows? That I am noble is the 
chance of fortune, and as such I receive and profit 
by the advantage, though, I trust, always in fitting 
reason; but no man can say that Emich of Leinin- 
gen pretends aught to the especial virtues of a 
monkish character. We that are modest may claim 
to indulge our failings, but justice should heavily 
visit him that sins under a cloak of sanctity." 

" I know not that thy exception may avail thee in 
the end. But thou wouldest say something to Bercht- 
hold Hintermayer s advantage? " 

" That would I, and right heartily. Could Hein 
rich be brought to a firm mind, that I might count 
on the support of the townsmen, these reprobates 
in cowls should be quickly disposed of; and, as of 
necessity, my dues would be much augmented, by 
clothing Berchthold with a deputy s authority over 
the recovered fields and villages, he should so gain 
in men s respect, as to soften the reluctance of the 
hardest-hearted Burgomaster in all Germany." 


" And in what manner dost thou look to me, in 
effecting this object ?" 

" One of thy understanding need scarce put the 
question. Thou hast been long a wife, Ulrike, and 
art skilled in the persuasions of thy sex. I know 
not thy practice with Heinrich; but when Ermen- 
garde would have her way, spite of her husband s 
inclinations, she has various manners of coming to 
her wishes. To-day she is smiling, to-morrow silent ; 
now she fondles, and then she frowns ; and, most of 
all, is she ready in seizing the moments of idle 
confidence to press on my unprepared reason the 
arguments of kisses and coquetry." 

"It were idle to say I do not understand you, 
Herr von Hartenburg. I wish not to raise the cur 
tain of your domestic confidence, nor do I feel dis 
posed that any should presume to lift mine. Heinrich 
and I pursue our several ways, as each deems 
right, though, I trust, always with the harmony of 
wedded interests, and I am little practised in the 
influence you mention. But, dear as Meta is to the 
heart of her mother and surely no shoot from the 
parent stem ever gave fonder hopes, or justified 
more tender regard" Ulrike folded her hands, and 
turned her meek blue eyes to heaven " much as I 
esteem young Berchthold, who is the child of my 
youth s nearest friend ; and gladly as I would see 
their young hearts for ever bound up in the same 
ties of family concord and matrimonial love, ths 
common parents of lisping laughing babes that 
should Cluster at my knee, giving the evening of life 
some compensation for the chill of its noon-tide 
rather than aid thee in this unhallowed design? 
rather than do aught, even in rebellious thought^ 
against the altars of my God; rather than set my 
selfishness in array against his dread power, oP 
fancy wish of mine can prove excuse for sacrilege 
I could follow the girl to her grave, with a 


tearless eye, and place my own head by her side, 
without regret for that calm decline which, when 
the weary probation of life is ended, Heaven grants 
to the deserving." 

The Count of Leiningen recoiled at the energy 
with which his companion spoke; for none are so 
commanding as the mild when aroused to resistance, 
or so authoritative as the good when required to 
exhibit the beauty of their principles. He was dis 
appointed ; but, though a sort of instinct warned him 
that he had no further hopes of gaining the assist 
ance of Ulrike, and, almost without knowing it 
himself, the respect which he had always entertained 
for his companion was increased. Taking the hand 
she extended to him, in amity, the moment her ex 
citement had a little abated, he was about to reply, 
when a footstep in the adjoining room, and a timid 
tap at the door, interrupted him. 

"Thou canst enter," said the Baron, believing 
that one of the castle maidens was without, and 
glad for the relief. 

" A million of thanks for the honor," returned Use, 
curtsying to the floor as she availed herself of the 
privilege. " This is the first time so great a favor 
ever befell me in Hartenburg, though, when a girl, 
as it might be a ruddy maiden like our Meta, I once 
was admitted to a closet in Heidelburg. There was 
f, and the late Burgomaster, Ulrike s father, and 
the good wife, her mother, on a junketing, in our 
young days, to see the curiosities of the Elector s 
Palace, and we had visited the tun" 

" Thou art sent to seek me ?" interrupted the mis 
tress. "Hath Meta need of her mother?" 

" That may be always said of a certainty, for 

g rls of that age are like the young of the nest, 
err Count, who are ever in danger of breaking 
their necks, if they take a hasty flight, without the 
example of the old to give them prudence as well as 


courage. Twenty times each day I know not an* 
it be not fifty do I say to our Meta, Do as thou 
wilt, child, an thou dost nothing amiss/ I hold it to be 
wrongful to curb young humors so long as they are 
innocent; and therefore do I say, that kindness is a 
better rod than anger; and, in this reproving and 
chastening manner, Herr von Hartenburg, have I 
reared both Meta and her mother. Well, here you 
both are, in friendly communion, an you were 
children of the same cradle ! and Heinrich Frey 
is yon, without, tasting the rhenish with the two 
churchmen that infect the castle" 

" Thou wouldst surely say frequent, good nurse." 

" What matters a word, child ! Infect or frequent 
are much the same, when one speaketh of the gentle 
and gay ! I remember ye both young and handsome, 
and a pair that the whole town of Duerckheim said 
ought never to be parted ; for if one was noble, the 
other was good; if one was strong and valiant, the 
other was fair and virtuous ; but the ways of the 
world led ye on different paths, and Heaven forbid 
that I should say aught against ways that so many 
travel !" 

" And thou hast left Meta with those that infect 
the castle, to come and say this ?" 

" Naught like it. It is true I let the girl listen to 
a few of their idle words, for without experience a 
maiden may not know when to repulse an improper 
freedom ; but for any levity to escape my eye, were 
as impossible as for my Lord Count to fail in duty 
to the Limburg altars. No, I complain not of the 
stranger nobles ; for while he of Rhodes did many 
gentle offices in behalf of Meta, the reverend Abbe 
held me in discourse touching this heresy of Luther, 
and, I warrant you, ecclesiastic as he is, he went 
not away the worse for my opinion of the schismatic ! 
We had goodly discourse on the dangers and tribu 
lations of the times, and might have had much 


earning between us, but for young Berchthold, who 
fancied himself beating the forest, by the manner 
in which he threshed among the old armor of the 
hall, disturbing all present with the idle pretence of 
seeking a cross-bow for the Count s pleasure in the 
morning; as if the Herr Count would have hunted 
with less satisfaction because there were wise words 
nttered in his halls ! The Hintermayers are a race 
I love, but this youth seemeth to be wanting of 
respect for years." 

And what hast done with my child ?" 
" Thou knowest it was thy desire she should say 
a few greetings to the fallen Lottchen; and when I 
thought the wandering cavalier had had his say, I 
beckoned the child away, in order that she might 
go to the hamlet on that errand. She will be 
none the worse for the discourse with that free 
cavalier, for naught so quickens virtue of the pure 
stamp as a little contamination with vice it is like 
the base metal they put in gold, to make the precious 
ore hard and able to undergo many hands." 

" Thou hast not suffered Meta to go unattended?" 
" Didst ever know me fail in duty] Thy motherly 
heart is quick to take alarm, like the bird fluttering 
at each leaf that rustles. Not I, in sooth : I sent the 
vain Gisela to keep her company, and whispered our 
Meta well, as they departed, not to fail to draw in 
struction from her companion s light discourse, 
which, I will warrant, turns on naught else but the 
gallantries of these strangers. Oh ! leave old Use 
to profit by any thing edifying that may turn up, in 
the way of accident ! I that never yet lost a good 
moral for want of pushing an opportunity ! and here 
stands Ulrike as proof of what 1 have done. I owe 
you excuses, Herr Emich, for sending away your 
forester ; but the boy vexed me with his clatter 
among the shields and arquebuses, and, in order to 
give him a wholesome lesson in silence, I sent him 


to see Meta safe to his mother s door, under the pre 
tence of its being necessary to have a manly arm 
present, to beat off the barking curs of the hamlet." 

" Does Heinrich know this ?" 

" In sooth, he is so beset with thy honor in being 
closeted with my Lord the Count, that he does little 
besides talk of it, and take his cup. When the child 
was thus cared for, by the one who first held her in 
arms, and one, too, whose experience is little short 
of threescore and fourteen, I saw not the necessity 
of calling him from his pleasures." 

Ulrike smiled, and turning to the Count, who had 
been so much lost in thought as to give little heed 
to the words of the nurse, she offered him her hand, 
and they left the closet in company 



* Ah, now soft blushes tinge her cheeks, 
And mantle on her neck of snow. 


THE cottage of Lottchen, the mother of Bercht 
nold, was distinguished from the other habitations of 
the hamlet, only by its greater neatness, and by that 
air of superior comfort which depends chiefly on 
taste and habit, and of which poverty itself can 
scarcely deprive those who have been educated in the 
usages and opinions of a higher caste. It stood a 
little apart from the general cluster of humble roofs; 
and, in addition to its other marks of superiority, it 
possessed the advantage of a small inclosure, by 
which it was partially removed from the publicity 
and noise that rob most of the villages and hamlets 
of Europe of a rural character. 

We have had frequent occasions to allude to the 
difficulty of conveying accurate ideas of positive 
things, or even of moral and political truths, while 
using the terms which use has. appropriated to the 
two hemispheres, but which are liable to so much 
qualification in their respective meanings. What is 
comfort in one country would be thought great dis 
comfort in another, and even the two higher degrees 
of comparison must always be understood subject 
to a right knowledge of their positive qualities. Thus 
most beautiful conveys nothing clear, unless we 
can agree on what is beautiful; while neatness and 
elegance, and even size, taken in their popular sig 
nifications, become purely terms of local conven- 


tion. Were we to say that the cottage of Lottchen 
Hintermayer resembled, in the least, one of those 
white arid spotless dwellings, with its Venetian 
blinds and pillared piazzas, its grassy court in front, 
and its garden teeming with golden fruit in the rear 
its acacias and willows shading the low roof, and 
its shrubbery exhaling the odors that a generous 
sun can extract, we should give such a picture to 
the reader as Europe nowhere presents nowhere, 
because in those regions in which nature has been 
bountiful, man has been held in mental duress ; and 
in those in which man is sufficiently advanced and 
free to require the indulgences we have named, na 
ture denies the boons so necessary to their existence. 
Here, and here only, do those whom fortune has 
not smiled upon, possess the union of comfort, space, 
retirement, and luxury, which depend on the causes 
named, for it is only here that are found the habits 
necessary to their production, in conjunction with 
the required climate and a cheapness of material 
and land, to place the whole within the reach of 
those who are not affluent. We wish, therefore, to 
be understood as speaking, at all times, under the 
consciousness of this difference in the value of terms, 
for, without such an understanding, there will be 
little intelligence between us and our countrymen. 

We have made this explanation, lest the reader 
might fancy some affinity between the hamlet of 
Hartenburg and one in the older settlements of the 
Union. The remoteness of the period might indeed 
give some reason to suspect such a resemblance, 
but were the tale one of our own times, it would be 
scarcely probable. The Germans, like all the more 
northern nations, are neat, in proportion to theii 
several degrees of civilization ; and the great fre 
quency of the little capitals which dot its surface, 
and which have all been, more or less, beautified by 
their respective princes, has caused it to possess a 


greater number of spacious and cleanly towns, in 
proportion to its population, than are to be met with 
in most of the other countries of the Euiopean con 
tinent ; but, as elsewhere in that quarter of the world, 
the poor are poor indeed. 

The little cluster of houses that were grouped be 
neath the salient bastions of Hartenburg, had the 
general character of poverty and humility which 
still belongs to nearly all such hamlets. The build 
ings were constructed of timber and mud, with 
thatched roofs, and openings to which, in that age, 
glass was a stranger. In speaking of the comfort 
of the dwelling of Lottchen, we wish to say little 
more than that it was superior to its fellows in these 
particulars, and that it had the additional merit of 
faultless neatness. The furniture, however, gave 
much stronger evidence of the former condition of 
its tenant. Enough of this description of property 
had been saved from the wreck of her husband s 
fortunes, to leave before the eyes of its mistress these 
traces of happier days one of those melancholy 
consolations in adversity which are common among 
those whose fall has been broken by some light cir 
cumstances of mitigation, and which, as monitors 
to delicacy and tenderness, make touching appeals 
to the recollections of the spectator. But Bercht- 
hold s mother had still better claims to the respect 
of those who came beneath her humble lintel. As 
we have already said, she had been the bosom friend 
of Ulrike in early youth, and, by education and 
character, she was still every way worthy of hold 
ing so near a trust with the wife of the Burgomas 
ter. The allowance of her son was small in money, 
but the Count permitted his forester to use the game 
freely ; and, as German frugality left her mistress 
of the wardrobes of several generations, the re 
spectable matron had never known absolute want, 
and was at all times ab.e to make such a persona] 


appearance as better suited her former than her 
present means. In addition to these advantages, 
Ulrike never visited the Jaegerthal without thought 
of her friend s necessities; and full often, at times 
and seasons when this sacred duty could not be 
performed in person, was Use dispatched to the ham 
let as the substitute of her considerate and affection 
ate mistress. 

The cavalcade from the Abbey had, of necessity, 
passed the door of Lottchen, and she was fully 
aware of the intended visit. When, therefore, Meta, 
blooming and happy, entered the cottage, attended 
by the warder s daughter, and accompanied by 
Berchthold, though secretly rejoicing in what she 
saw, the pleased and watchful matron neither ex 
pressed nor felt surprise. 

" Thy mother ?" were the first words which 
passed the lips of the widowed Lottchen, after 
she had kissed the glowing and warm cheek of the 

"Is closeted with the Herr Emich, my father 
says ; else would she be sure to be here. She has 
sent me to say this." 

" And thy father ?" added Lottchen, with empha 
sis, glancing an uneasy eye from Meta to her son. 

" He drinks of rhenish with the castle wassailers. 
Truly, my mother Lottchen, thou must find the 
hamlet unquiet with these graceless spirits in the 
hold. Our Limburg monks are scarcely so thirsty; 
and for idle discourse, I know not their equal in 
Duerckheim, town of vanities and folly though it be, 
as good Use is apt to say." 

Lbttchen smiled, for she saw by the playful eye 
of her young visitor, that nothing unpleasant had 
occurred; and giving Gisela welcome, she led the 
way within. 

"Does Heinrich know of this visit?" asked the 


widow, when her young guests were seated, and 
with a painful interest in the answer. 

" I tell thee, Lottchen, that my father quaffs with 
the strangers. Here is Berchthold, thy son the 
restless, impatient Berchthold he can tell thee 
mother, into what goodly company the Burgomaster 
of Duerckheim hath fallen !" 

As Meta said this, she laughed, though, in very 
sooth, she scarce knew why. The more experienced 
Lottchen saw little else in the mirth of her young 
visitor than one of those buoyant impulses of youth 
which lead equally to gaiety and sorrow, without 
sufficient cause; but she watched the countenance 
of her own child with solicitude, to note how far he 
sympathized with the merriment of Meta. Bercht 
hold, by speaking, was the interpreter of his own 

"Since thou appealest to me," he said, "my an 
swer is, that Heinrich Frey consorts at present 
with two as hopeless idlers as ever darkened door 
in Hartenburg. Truly, Brother Luther needs bestir 
himself for the Church, when such as these go forth 
in its garments !" 

" Say what thou wilt, Master Berchthold," cried 
Gisela, "of the prating half- shaven Abbe, but respect 
him of Rhodes, as a soldier in evil fortune, and one 
that is both gentle and gallant." 

" As gallant as thou wilt," cried Meta, with warmth. 
"Thy humor for mild discourse must be formed 
by the rude company of the bold, if thou stylest these 
gentle !" 

Lottchen had examined each face earnestly, and 
ner countenance brightened with the frankness and 
fervor of the last speaker. She was about to say 
something in guarded commendation of her judg 
ment, when a light step was heard before the outer 
door, and Ulrike herself entered. Notwithstanding 
Jie early departure of the young people from the 


castle, and the trifling distance between its walls 
and the hamlet, so much leisure had been wasted in 
idle laughter by the way, or in culling flowers on the 
hill-side, that she had sufficient time to exhaust all 
that old Use had to recount concerning the manner 
in which she had disposed of her charge, and to 
r ollow them to the cottage, ere the discourse had 
gone farther. The meeting between the friends 
was, as wont, warm and happy. When the usual 
inquiries were exhausted, and a few unmeaning 
observations had been made by the girls, the younger 
part of the company were gotten rid of, undei 
pretence of conducting Meta to witness the manner 
in which Berchthold had arranged the nests for some 
doves, which had been a present from herself to 
his mother. The two parents saw the departure of 
their children, always accompanied by Gisela, with 
satisfaction; for each had need of a secret con 
ference with the other, and both knew how apt 
vouth and inclination were to prolong their ab 
sence, by means of those thousand little delays 
which form the unconscious and innocent coquetry 
of love. 

When left to themselves, Ulrike and Lottchen 
sat, for some time, with hands interlocked, regarding 
one another earnestly. 

" Thou hast borne the trying season of the spring 
time well, good Lottchen," said the former, with 
affection. " I have no longer any fear that thy 
health might suffer in this damp abode." 

" And thou lookest youthful and fair as when we 
strolled, like thy Meta there, laughing and thought 
less girls, on the heath of the Heidenmauer. Of all I 
have known, Ulrike, thou art the least changed by 
time, either in form or heart." 

The gentle pressure, before they released each 
other s hands, was a silent pledge of their mutua. 


"Thou findest Meta blooming and happy?" 

" As she meriteth to be and Berchthold I think 
mm fast growing into the comeliness and form ol 
his sire ?" 

" He is all I could wish one qualification except- 
ed, my friend ; and that, thou well knowest, I do not 
wish him for any other reason than to satisfy Hein- 
rich s scruples." 

"For my child, that qualification is hopeless. 
Berchthold has too much generous indifference to 
gold, ever to accumulate, were the means his. But 
what hope is there for an humble forester, who travels 
his range of chase, follows his lord to ceremonies, 
or attends him in battle ?" 

" The Herr Emich values thy son, and I do think 
would fain do him favor. Were the Count earnestly 
to reason with Heinrich, all hope would not yet be 

Lottchen dropped her eyes to the work on which 
her needle was employed, for necessity had render 
ed her systematically industrious. The pause was 
long and thoughtful. But while Ulrike pondered on 
the chances of overcoming her husband s love of 
money and his worldly views, a very different 
picture had presented itself to the mind of her 
friend. The eye-lids of the latter trembled, and a 
hot tear fell upon the linen in her lap. 

" I have thought much of late, Ulrike," she said, 
"of the justice of burthening thy happiness and 
golden fortunes with the load of our adversity. 
Berchthold is young and brave, and there seems as 
little necessity as there is right, in weighing thee 
and Meta down to our own level. I have anxiously 
wished for the means of counselling with some 
friend less interested than thou, on the fitness of 
what we do; but it is difficult to speak of so delicate 
a subject without wronging thy daughter." 

" If thou wouldest have the most disinterested and 


wisest of all advisers, Lottchen, take counsel of thine 
own heart." 

" That tells me to be just to thee and Meta." 

" Dost thou know aught of Berchthold s manners 
or mind, that may have escaped the observation of 
an anxious mother, who desires to match her own 
child with none but the deserving ?" 

Lottchen smiled through her tears, and gazed al 
the mild features of Ulrike with reverence. 

" If thou wouldest hear evil of the youth, do not 
come to her who hath no other hope, for the tidings. 
The orphan is the sole riches of his widowed mother, 
and thou mayest not get the truth from one that re 
gards her treasure wth so much covetousness." 

" And dost thou fancy, Lottchen, that thy son in 
poverty is dearer to thee than is Meta to her mother, 
though Providence may have left us wealth and 
consideration ? Misfortune hath indeed changed 
thee, and thou art no longer the Lottchen of my 
young days !" 

"I will say no more, Ulrike," answered the 
widow, in a low voice, speaking like one rebuked ; 
" I leave all to heaven and thee ! Thou art certain 
that were Berchthold Count of Leiningen, his and 
my desire would be to see Meta his bride." 

A nearly imperceptible smile played upon the 
sweet mouth of Ulrike, for she bethought her of 
the recent discourse with Emich; but there was 
neither suspicion nor discontent in the passing 
thought. She was too wise to put human nature 
to very severe tests, and much too meek to believe 
all who fell short of perfection unworthy of her 

" We will think of things as they are," she answer 
ed, "and not dwell on impossible chances. Wert 
thou Ulrike and I Lottchen, none can believe more 
fervently than I, that these opinions would undergo 
no change. Of Meta thou art sure, my friend; but 


truth bids me say, that I fear Heinrich will never 
yield. His mind is much occupied with what the 
world deems its equality of interests; and it will be 
hard, indeed, to bring him to balance virtues against 

" And is he so wrong 1 Of what excellence is 
Berchthold possessed, that does not find at least ifcs 
equal in Meta?" 

" Happiness cannot be bartered for, as we would 
look into the value of houses and lands. He is wrong; 
and I could weep oh, how bitterly I have wept ! 
that Heinrich Frey should be thus bent on casting 
the happiness of that artless and unpractised child, 
on the rude chances of so narrow calculations. But 
we will still hope," added Ulrike, drying her tears, 
"and turn our thoughts to the more cheerful side." 

" Thou saidst something of the power of my boy 
with the Count, and of his wish to do us service ?" 

" I know no other means to move Heinrich s mind. 
Though kind and yielding to me, in. all matters that 
he believes touch my state, he believes that no 
woman is a fit judge of the world s interests; and, 1 
fear I should add, that, from too much familiarity 
with my poor means, he places his wife lowest 
among her sex in this particular: there is no hope, 
therefore, that any words of mine can change him. 
But the Lord Emich has great hold on his judgment, 
for, Lottchen, they who prize the world s smiles, 
ever yield reverence to those that chance to pos 
sess them largely." 

The widow dropped her eyes, for rarely, in their 
numerous and friendly conferences, did her friend 
allude to the weaknesses of her husband. 

" And the Herr Emich ?" she asked, desirous to 
change the discourse. 

" The Count is much disposed to aid us, as I 
have said ; for I have laid bare to him our wisnes 


this morning, and have much entreated him to do 
this kind act." 

" It is not wont for thee to be the solicitor with the 
Herr von Hartenburg, Ulrike !" rejoined Lottchen, 
raising her eyes again to the countenance of hei 
friend, across whose cheek there passed a flush so 
faint as to resemble the reflection of some bright 
color of her attire, while a still less obvious smile 
dimpled the skin. The looks that were exchanged 
told of recollections that were both joyous and 
melancholy, being, as it were, hasty but comprehen 
sive glances into the pregnant volume of the past. 

" It was the first request," resumed Ulrike; "nor 
can I say the boon was absolutely refused, though 
its gift was coupled with a condition impossible to 

" If it were too much for thy friendship, it must 
have been hard indeed!" 

Lottchen spoke under the influence of one of 
those sudden and keen impulses of disappointment, 
which sometimes make the strong in principle mo 
mentarily forget their justice; and Ulrike perfectly 
understood the meaning of her words. The differ 
ence in their fortunes, the hopelessness of the future 
with the fallen Lottchen, and all the bitterness of 
unmerited contumely and poverty, the severe judg 
ments which a thoughtless world inflicts on the un 
lucky, passed quickly through the mind of the latter, 
amid a tumult of regrets and recollections. 

" Of this thou shalt judge for thyself, Lottchen/ 
she answered calmly; "and when thou hast heard 
me, I require thy unconcealed reply, conjuring thee, 
by that long and constant friendship across which 
no cloud has ever yet passed, to lay bare thy soul, 
shading no thought, nor desiring to color even the 
most latent of thy wishes !" 

" Thou hast only to speak." 

" Hast thou never suspected, that all this warlike 


preparation in the hold, in the presence of the men- 
at-arms in Limburg, tends to no good ? 

" Both speak of war; but the Elector is sore press 
ed, and it is now long since our Germany was at 
perfect peace." 

" Nay, thy surmises must have gone beyond these 
general causes." 

The look of surprise assured Ulrike she was 

" And Berchthold ? Has he said naught of his 
Lord s intentions?" continued the latter. 

" He talks of battles and sieges, like most of his 
years, and he often essays the armor of his grand 
father, which lumbers yon closet; for thou knowest, 
though not of knightly rank, we have had soldiers 
in our race." 

41 Is he not angered against Limburg?" 

" He is, and yet is he not. There is a little flame 
of resentment, I regret to say, in all of the Jaeger- 
thai against the monks, which is much fanned in my 
son by his foster-brother, Gottlob, the cow-herd." 

" This flame hath descended to the hind from 
his Lord. All that Gottlob says, Emich hath more 
than hinted." 

" Nay, there was revelling in the hold, between 
Bonifacius and the Count, no later than the night 
past !" 

"Too much blindness to that which passeth 
before thy eyes, dear Lottchen, is a virtuous feeling 
of thy nature. The Count of Hartenburg plots the 
downfall of the Abbey-altars, and he has this day 
sworn to me, that if I will win Heinrich to his 
wishes, no influence or authority of his shall be 
wanting to make Berchthold and Meta happy." 

Lottchen heard this announcement with the silent 
amazement with which the unsuspecting and meek 
first hearken to the bold designs of the ambitious 
and daring. 


" This would be sacrilege !" she exclaimed with 

" Twould be to disgrace the altars of God, that 
our desires might prevail." 

There was a pause. Lottchen rose from her 
chair, with so little effort, that, to the imagination 
of her excited friend, it seemed her stature grew by 
supernatural means. Then raising her arms, the 
widowed mother poured out her feelings in words. 

" Ulrike, thou knowest my heart," she said: "thou, 
who art the sister of my love, if not of my blood 
thou, from whom no childish thought was hid, no 
maiden feeling concealed thou, to whom my mind 
was but a mirror of thine own, reflecting every 
wish, all impulses, each desire and well dost thou 
know how dear to me is Berchthold ! Thou canst 
say, that when Heaven took his father, the yearn 
ings of a mother alone tempted me to live; that for 
him, I have borne adversity with contentment, 
smiling when he smiled, and rejoicing when the 
buoyancy of youth made him rejoice; that as for 
him I have lived, so that for him would I die. 
Thou canst say, Ulrike, that my own youthful and 
virgin affections were not yielded with greater de 
light and confidence than I have witnessed this 
growing tenderness for Meta; and yet do I here 
declare, in the presence of God and his works, that 
before a rebel wish of mine shall aid Count Emich 
in this act, there is no earthly sorrow I will not 
welcome, no humility that I will dread !" 

The pious Lottchen sank into her seat, pale, trem 
bling, and exhausted with an effort so unusual. The 
widowed mother of Berchthold had never possessed 
the rare personal attractions of her friend, and those 
which were left by time, had suffered cruel marks 
from sorrow and depression. Still, where she now 
sat, her face beaming with the inspiration of the 
reverence she felt for the Deity, and her soul charged 


lo bursting, Ulrike thought she had never seen one 
more fair. Her own eyes brightened with delight, 
for at that moment of spiritual elevation, neither 
thought of any worldly interests ; and her strongest 
wish was that the Count of Hartenburg could be a 
witness of this triumph of principle over selfishness. 
Her own refusal, though so similar in manner and 
words, the natural result of their great unity of 
character, seemed destitute of all merit ; for what 
was the simple denial of one of her means, com 
pared to this lofty readiness to encounter a con 
tumely that was already so bitterly understood. 

" I expected no less," answered Ulrike, when 
emotion permitted speech: "from thee, Lottchen, 
less would have been unworthy, and more could 
scarcely come ! We will now speak of other things, 
and trust to the power of the dread Being whose 
majesty is menaced. Hast thou yet visited the Hei- 
denmauer 1 ?" 

Notwithstanding the excited state of her own 
feelings, which were, however, gradually subsiding to 
their usual calm, Lottchen took heed of the change 
of manner in her friend as she uttered the last 
words, and the slight tremor of the voice with which 
her question was put. 

" The kindness of the anchorite to Berchthold, and 
his great reputation for sanctity, drew me thither 
I found him of mild discourse, and a recluse of great 

" Didst note him well, Lottchen?" 

"As the penitent regards him who offers consola 

" 1 would thou hadst been more particular !" 

Thewidow glanced towards her friend in surprise, 
but immediately turned her eyes, that were still filled 
with tears, to her work. There was a moment of 
musing and painful pause, for each felt the want of 
their usual and entire confidence. 


" Dost thou distrust him, Ulrike V 9 

" Not as a penitent, or one willing to atone." 

" Thou disapproves! of the deference he receives 
from the country round ?" 

" Of that thou mayest judge, Lottchen, when 1 
tell thee that I suffer Meta to seek counsel from him." 

Lottchen showed greater surprise, and the silence 
was longer than before, and still more embarrassing. 

" It is long since thou hast named to me, good 
Lottchen, one that was so much and so warmly in 
our discourse when we were girls !" 

The amazement of the listener was sudden and 
marked. She dropped her work, and clasped her 
hands together with force. 

" Dost thou believe this ?" burst from her lips. 

Ulrike bowed her head, apparently to examine 
the linen, though really unconscious of the act, while 
the hand she extended trembled violently. 

" I have sometimes thought it," she answered, 
scarce speaking above a whisper. 

A merry laugh, one of those joyous impulses which 
spring from the gaiety of youth, was heard at the 
door, and Meta entered, followed by Berchthold and 
the warder s daughter. At this interruption the 
friends arose, and withdrew to an inner room. 



I pray thee, loving wife, and gentle daughter, 
Give even way unto my rough affairs." 

King Henry IV. 

ABOUT an hour after the moment when Ulrike and 
Lottchen disappeared, as described in the close of 
Jie last chapter, the cavalcade of Heinrich Frey 
was seen moving along the Jaergerthal, beneath the 
hill of Limburg, on its way towards the town. Four 
.ight-armed followers of Emich accompanied the 
party on foot, under the pretence of doing honor to 
the Burgomaster, but in truth to protect him against 
insult from any stragglers belonging to the. men-at- 
arms who lay in the Abbey a precaution that was 
not altogether without utility, as the reader will re 
member that the path ran within call of the eccle 
siastical edifices. 

As the beasts ambled past the imposing towers 
and wide roofs, that were visible even to those who 
journeyed in that deep glen, Heinrich s countenance, 
which had been more than usually thoughtful ever 
since he passed beneath the gate of Hartenburg, 
grew graver ; and Meta, who rode as usual at his 
crupper, heard him draw one of those heavy res 
pirations which were so many infallible signs that 
the mental part of her worthy parent was under 
going extraordinary exercises. 

Nor did this shade appear only on the face of the 
Burgomaster. A deep and thoughtful gloom clouded 
the fine features of his wife, while the countenance 
of the blooming daughter betrayed that sort of 
sombre rest which is apt to succeed high excitement ; 
a moment in which the mind appears employed in 
examining the past, as if disposed to dissect the 
merits and demerits of its recent enjoyments. Of 
them all, the male attendants alone excepted, old 


Use returned as she had gone, self-satisfied, unmoved, 
and talkative. 

" Count Emich hath displeased thee, father," Meta 
said quickly, when a respiration, which in one less 
physical would have been termed a sigh, gave her 
reason to think the Burgomaster s bosom was strug 
gling with some bitter vexation ; "else wouldest thou 
be more cheerful, and better disposed to give me thy 
parental counsel, as is thy habit, when we go to 
gether on the pillion." 

" The occasion shall not fail, girl ; and these Ab 
bey-walls offer in good time to prick my fatherlj 
memory. But thou art in error, if thou thinkesr 
that the souls of the Herr Emich and mine are not 
bound together like those of David and Jonathan. I 
know not the man I more love, or, the Emperor and 
the Elector apart, as is my duty, the noble I so much 

" It is well it is so, for I greatly value these airy 
rides among the hills, and most of all do I prize a 
visit to the cottage of Lottchen !" 

Heinrich ejaculated audibly. Then, riding a short 
distance in silence, he continued the dialogue. 

" Meta," he said, " thou art now getting to be of 
a womanish age, and it is time to fortify thy young 
mind in a manner that it may meet the cunning and 
malice of the world. Life is of great precarious- 
ness, especially to the valiant and enterprising, and 
we live in perilous times. He that is in his prime 
to-day, honored and of credit, may be cut down to 
morrow, or even to-night, to bring the allusion more 
closely to ourselves; and thine own parent is as 
mortal as any reptile that creeps, or even as the 
most worthless roisterer of the Electorate, that 
wasteth his substance, the saving of some gainful 
parent perhaps, in riotousness !" 

" This is true, father," rejoined the girl, who, 
though accustomed to the homely morality of the 


good citizen, never before had heard the Burgomas 
ter deal, with so little deference to himself, and who 
spoke in a lowered tone, as if the reflection of his 
sudden humility produced a withering influence on 
her own self-esteem. " We are no better than the 
poorest of Deurckheim, and scarcely as good as 
poor Lottchen and Berchthold." 

A stronger ejaculation betrayed Heinrich s dis 

" Let these honest people alone," he answered , 
"since each must be saved or be damned on his own 
account, let Lottchen and her son take such fare as 
Providence shall send; we have just now serious 
matters of great family concernment to occupy us. 
I would reason with thee gravely, child, and there 
fore I have need of thy closest attention. It being 
conceded that I am mortal an admission thou may- 
est be certain, Meta, I should not loosely make or 
without necessity it follows, as a consequence, that, 
sooner or later, I must be taken from thee, when 
thou wilt be left an orphan. Now this great calam 
ity may befall us both much sooner than thou fan 
ciest; for, I repeat it, we live in perilous times, when 
hot-headedness and valor may any day bring a man 
to a premature end." 

The round arm of Meta clung more forcibly to 
the body of the Burgomaster, who took the gentle 
pressure as so much proof of his child s concern 
in his suppositious end. 

" Why tell me of this, fatner ?" she exclaimed, 
" when thou knowest it only makes both unhappy ! 
Though young, it may be my fate to die first." 

" That is possible, but little probable," returned 
Heinrich, with a melancholy air. " Giving nature 
a fair chance, it will be my turn to precede even thy 
mother, since I have ten good years the start of 
her; and as for thee, I greatly dread it will be, one 
day, thy misfortune to be left an orphan. God knows 


what will be the end of all these contentions that 
now beset us, and therefore I hold it wise pre 
pared. Whenever the evil day of parting may 
come, Meta, thou wilt be left with a sore companion 
for one of tender years and little experience." 


" I mean money, child, which is a blessing, or a 
curse, as it proveth. Were I taken suddenly away, 
many idle and dissolute gallants would beset thee, 
swearing by their mustachios and beards, that thou 
wert dearer to them than the air they breathe, when 
in truth their sole desire would be to look into the 
leavings of the departed Burgomaster. There is 
great difficulty in marrying one of thy neutral con 
dition happily, for, while want of birth closeth the 
door of the castle and the palace against thy en 
trance, ample means give thee right to look beyond 
the mere burgher. I would fain have one of good 
hopes for a son-in-law, and yet no spendthrift." 

"That may not be so easy of accomplishment, 
good father," returned Meta, laughing, for few girls 
of her years listen to conjectures or plans concern 
ing their future establishment, without a nervous ir 
ritability that easily takes the appearance of merri 
ment " to me the world seems divided into those 
who get and those who spend." 

" Or into the wise and foolish. There are three 
great ingredients that commonly enter into all mar 
riages of girls in thy condition, and without which 
there is little hope of happiness, or even of every 
day respect. The first is the means of livelihood, 
the second is the consent and blessing of the parents, 
and the third is equality of condition." 

" I had thought thee about to say something of 
tastes and inclinations, father !" 

" Idle conceit, child, that any whim may change. 
Look at yonder peasant, who is trimming the Abbey 
vines dost think him less happy with his cup of sour 


liquor, than if he quaffed of the best rhenish in Boni- 
facius s cellar? And yet, had the hind his choice, 
doubt it not he would be ready to swear none but 
the liquor of Hockheim should wet lip of his ! The 
fellow might make himself miserable, by mere dint 
of fancy, were he once to set his mind on other 
fare ; but, taking life soberly and industriously, who 
so content as he ? Oh ! I have often envied these 
knaves their happiness, when vexation and losses 
have weighed upon my spirits !" 

"And wouldestthou change conditions with these 
vine-trimmers, father ?" 

" What art thinking of, wench ? Is there not such 
a thing as order and propriety on earth ? And this 
brings me to my purpose. There has been question 
to-day concerning some silliness, not to say pre 
sumption, on the part of young Berchthold Hinter- 
mayer, in wishing to couple his poverty with thy 
means " 

The head of Meta fell abashed, and the arm, 
which clasped the body of her father, trembled per 

" I doubt that Berchthold has not thought of this," 
she answered, in a voice but little above her breath, 
though her respiration was very audible. 

" All the better for him, since such a desire would 
be just as unreasonable as it would be, on thy part, 
to wish to wed with Count Emich s heir." 

" Nay, that silly thought never crossed me !" ex 
claimed Meta, frankly. 

* All the better for thee, girl, since the Herr von 
Hartenburg has had the boy betrothed these many 
years. Well, as we now understand each other so 
well, leave me to my thoughts, for weighty matters 
press on my mind." 

So saying, Heinrich composed himself to reflec 
tion, fully content with the parental lesson he had 
just imparted to his daughter. But, in the few and 


vague remarks that had fallen from the Burgoma* 
ter, Meta found sufficient food for uncomfortable 
conjecture for the rest of the ride. 

During the short dialogue between Heinrich and 
Meta, there had also been a discourse between Ulrike 
and the crone that rode on her pillion. The pro 
pensity of old Use to talk, and the well-tried indul 
gence of her mistress, induced the former to break 
silence the moment they were clear of the hamlet, 
and were so far advanced beyond the rest of the 
party, as to render it safe to speak freely. 

" Well," exclaimed the nurse, " this hath been, 
truly, a day ! First had we matins in Deurckheim ; 
and then, the stirring words of Father Johan, with 
the Abbey mass ; and lastly, this high demeanor 
of the Count Emich ! I do not think, good wife, that 
thou hast ever before seen the Burgomaster so pre 
ferred !" 

" He is ever in the graces of the Herr von Har 
tenburg, as thou mayest know, Use," returned Hein 
rich s partner, speaking like one that thought of 
other things. < ; I would that they were less friendly 
at this moment." 

" Nay, therein thou dost little justice to thy hus 
band. It is honorable to be honored by the world s 
honored, and thou shouldest wish the Burgomaster 
favor with all such, though it were even with the 
Emperor. But thou wert ever particular, even as 
a child ; and I should not deal too harshly with a 
propensity that, coming as it were of nature, is not 
without reason. Ah ! Heaven is ever tender with 
the good ! Now, what a happy life is thine, Ulrike ; 
here canst thou go forth before all that were once; 
thy equals, a Burgomaster s companion, and not a 
varlet between Deurckheim-gate, or indeed thine; 
own gate, and the hold of Hartenburg, shall stand* 
covered as thy steed shuffles past. This is it to be 
fortunate ! Then have we worthy Heinrich for a 


master, and such another for keeping all in due re 
spect, is not to be seen in our town; and Meta, who, 
beyond dispute, is both the fairest and the wisest of 
her years among all the maidens, and thyself scarce 
ly less blooming than of old, with such health and 
contentment as might even disarm widowhood of 
its sorrows. Ah ! what a life hath been thine !" 

Ulrike seemed to arouse l^erself irom a trance, as 
the nurse thus chanted praises in honor of her good 
fortune, and the sigh she drew, unconscious of its 
meaning, was long and tremulous. 

" I complain not of my fate, good Use." 

" If thou didst, I would cause tne beast to halt, 
that I might quickly descend, for nothing good could 
come of a journey so blasphemous ! No, gratitude 
before all other virtues, except humility; for humili 
ty leadeth to favors, and favor is the lawful parent 
of gratitude itself. I would thou couldest have been 
at my last shriving, Ulrike, and thou shouldest have 
heard questions of nice meaning closely reasoned ! 
[t happened that Father Johan was in the confes 
sional, and when he had got the little I had to say 
of myself in the way of acknowledgment, (for, though 
i great sinner like all human, it is little I can do 
against Heaven at threescore and ten,) we came to 
vords concerning doctrine. The Monk maintained 
iiiat the best of us might fail away, so as to merit 
condemnation; while I would have sworn, had it 
oeen seemly to swear in such a place, that the late 
Prior, than whom none better ever dwelt in Lim- 
burg, always gave comfortable assurance of mercy 
being safe, when fairly earned. I wonder not that 
these heresies should be abroad, when the professed 
throw this discouragement in the way of the old 
and weak !" 

" Thou art too apt, good Use, to dwell on subtle 
ties, when a meeker faith might better become thy 


"And what is this condition, prithee, that thou 
namest it as a disqualified Am I not aged and 
can any say better what is sin, or what not ? Didst 
thou know what sin was thyself, child, till I taught 
thee ? Am I not mortal, and therefore frail am I 
not a woman, and therefore inquiring and am I 
not aged, and therefore experienced ? No, come to 
me, an thou wouldest get an insight into real sin 
sin that hath much need of grace !" 

" Well, let it be thus. But, Use, I would recall thy 
mind to days long past, and take counsel of thy 
experience in a matter that toucheth me nearly." 

" That must be some question of Meta ; naught 
else could touch a mother nearly." 

" Thou hast reason in part : tis of Meta, and of 
us all, in sooth, that I would speak. Thou hast 
now been to the Heidenmauer more than once with 
our girl, in quest of the holy Anchorite?" 

" Have I not ! Thou mayest well say more than 
once, since I have twice made that weary journey; 
and few of my years would have come off so lightly 
from the fatigue." 

" And what is said in the country round of the 
holy man of his origin and history, I mean ?" 

" Much is said; and much that is good and edify 
ing is said. It is thought that one blessing of his 
is as good as two from the Abbey; for of him no 
harm is known, whereas there is much reputed of 
Limburg that had better not be true. For myself, 
Ulrike and I am one that does not treat these 
matters lightly I should go away with more surety 
of favor with a single touch of the Hermit s hand, 
than if honored with blows from all of Limburg 
But, from the account I except Father Arnolph, who 
if he be not an Anchorite, well deserves, from his 
virtues, to be one. Oh ! that is a man, were justice 
done him, who ought never to taste other liquor 


than water of the spring, or other food than bread 
hard as a rock?" 

" And hast thou seen him of the Heidenmauer?" 

" It hath been sufficient for me to be in sight of 
his hut. I am none of those that cannot have a 
good thing in possession, without using it up. I 
have never laid eyes on the holy man, for that is a 
virtue I keep in store against some of the sore evils 
that beset all in age. Let any of the autumn plagues 
come upon me, and thou shalt see in what manner 
I will visit him !" 

" Use, thou mayest yet remember the days of my 
infancy, and hast some knowledge of most of the 
events of Deurckheim for these many, many years?" 

" I know not what thou callest infancy, but if it 
mean the first cry thy feeble voice ever made, or 
the first glance of thy twinkling eyes, I remember 
both an it were yesterday s vespers." 

" And thou hast not forgotten the youths and maid 
ens that then sported at our merry-makings, and 
were gay in their time, as these we see to-day?" 

" Call you these gay ? These are hired mourners 
compared to those of my youth. You that have 
been bcrn in the last fifty years know little of mirth 
and gaiety. If thou wouldest learn" 

" Of this we can speak at another season. But 
since thy memory remains so clear, thou canst not 
have forgotten the young Herr von Ritterstein ; he 
that was well received of old within my father s 
doors ?" 

Ulrike spoke in a low voice, but the easy move 
ment of the beast they rode suffered every word to 
.each the ear of her companion. 

" Do I remember Odo von Ritterstein?" exclaimed 
the crone. " Am I a heathen, to forget him or his 
crime ?" 

" Poor Odo Bitterly hath he repented that trans- 


gression in banishment, as I have heard. We may 
hope that his offence is forgiven !" 

" Of whom of Heaven? Never, as thou livest, 
Ulrike, can such a crime be pardoned. It will be 
twenty years this night since he did that deed, as all 
in the Jaegerthal well know; for there have beer 
masses and exorcisms without number said in th 
Abbey-chapel on his account. What dost take 
Heaven to be, that it can forget an offence like that!" 

" It was a dreadful sin !" answered Ulrike, shud 
dering, for though she betrayed a desire to exoner 
ate the supposed penitent, horror at his offence was 
evidently uppermost in her mind. 

" It was blasphemy to God, and an outrage to 
man. Let him look to it, I say, for his soul is in 
cruel jeopardy!" 

A heavy sigh was the answer of the Burgomas 
ter s wife. 

" I knew young Odo von Ritterstein well," contin 
ued the crone, " and, though not ill gifted as to out 
ward appearance, and of most seductive discourse 
to all who would listen to a honied tongue, I can 
boast of having read his inmost nature at our very 
first acquaintance." 

" Thou understood a fearful mystery !" half whis 
pered Ulrike. 

" It was no mystery to one of my years and 
experience. What is a comely face, and a noble 
birth, and a jaunting air, and a bold eye, to your 
woman that hath had her opportunities, and who 
hath lived long? Nay, nay young Odo s soul was 
read by me, as your mass-saying priest readeth his 
missal; that is, with half a glance." 

" It is surprising that one of thy station should have 
so quickly and so well understood him, that most 
have found inexplicable. Thou knowest he was long 
in favor with my parents ?" 

" Ay, and with thee, Ulrike; and this proves the 


great difference of judgments. But not a single 
day, nay not even an hour, was I mistaken in his 
character. What was his name to me ? They say 
he had crusaders among his ancestors, and that 
nobles of his lineage bore the sign of the cross, under 
a hot sun and in a far land, in honor of God ; but 
none of this would I hear, I saw the man with 
mine own eyes, and with mine own judgment did I 

" Thou sawest one, Use, of no displeasing mien." 
" So thought the young and light-minded. I deny 
not his appearance; twas according to Heaven s 
pleasure nor do I say aught against his readiness 
in exercises, or any other esteemed and knightly 
qualities, for I am not one to backbite a fallen enemy. 
But he had a way ! Now, when he came first to 
visit thy father, here did he enter the presence of 
the honest Burgomaster an he had been the Elector, 
instead of a mere Baron; and though there I stood, 
waiting to do him reverence as became his rank 
and my breeding, nay, doing him reverence, and 
that oft repeated, not a look of grace, nor a thank, 
nor a smile of condescension did I get, for my pains. 
His eyes could not stoop to the old nurse, but were 
fastened on the face of the young beauty, besides 
many other levities. Oh! I quickly accounted him 
for what he was !" 

" He was of contradictory qualities." 
" Worse than that a hundred-fold worse. I can 
count you up his graces in brief speech First was 
he a roisterer, that never missed occasion to enter 
into all debaucheries with the very monks he dis 
honored, " 

" Nay, that I did never hear !" 
" Is it reasonable to suppose otherwise, after what 
we know of a certainty? Give me but one bold vice 
in a man, and I will quickly show you all its com- 


" And is this true? Ought we not rather to thmk 
that most yield in their weakest points, while they 
may continue to resist in their strongest? That 
there are faults, which, inviting the world s condem 
nation, produce indifference to the world s opinion, 
may be true; but I hope few are so evil as not tc 
retain some portion of their good qualities." 

" Hadst thou ever seen a siege, good wife, thou 
wouldest not say this. Here is your enemy, without 
the ditch, shouting, and screaming, and doing his 
worst to alarm the garrison. I say now but what 
I have thrice seen here, in our very Deurckheim 
but so long as the breach is not made, or the ladders 
placed, each goes his way in the streets, quietly and 
unharmed. But let the enemy once enter, though 
it be but by a window, or down a chimney, open 
fly the gates, and in pour the columns, horsemen and 
footmen, till not a house escapes rifling, nor a sanc 
tuary violation. Now this blasphemy of Herr Odo 
was much as if a curtain of wall had fallen at once, 
Jetting in whole battalions and squadrons of vices in 

" That the act was fearful, is as certain as that it 
was heavily punished ; but still may it have been the 
fault of momentary folly, or of provoked resent 

" It was blasphemy, and as such it is punished ; 
why then say more in its defence? Here Cometh 
Meta within call, and it were well she should not 
hear her mother justify sin. Remember thou art a 
mother, and bear thy charge with prudence." 

As the horse ridden by the Burgomaster and his 
daughter drew near, Ulrike ceased speaking, with 
the patient forbearance that distinguished her inter 
course with the old woman. And during the rest 
of the ride, little more passed among the equestrians. 
On reaching his own abode, however, Heinrich 


Hastened to hold a secret council with the chief men 
of the place. 

The remainder of the day passed as was wont in 
the towns of that age. The archers practised with 
their bows, without the walls; the more trained 
arquebusiers were exercised with their unwieldy but 
comparatively dangerous weapons ; the youthful of 
the two sexes danced, while the wine-houses were 
thronged with artisans, who quaffed, after the toil 
of the week, the cheap and healthful liquor of the 
Palatinate, in a heavy animal enjoyment. Here and 
there a monk of the neighboring Abbey appeared in 
the streets, though it was with an air less authorita 
tive and assured, than before the open promulgation 
of the opinions of Luther had brought into question 
so manv of the practices of the prevailing Church* 


Thus I renounce the world and worldly things." 


IT will be remembered, that the time of this tale 
was in the winning month of June. When the sun 
had fallen beneath those vast and fertile plains of 
the west, among which the Rhine winds its way, a 
swift and turbid though noble current, that, like 
some bold mountaineer, has made a descent from 
the passes of Switzerland, to gather tribute from 
every valley on his passage, there remained in the 
air the bland and seductive warmth of the season. 
Still the evening was not a calm moonlight night, like 
those which grace a more alluring climate; but 
there reigned in its quiet, a character of sombre 
repose that constantly reminded all of the hour. It 
seemed a moment more adapted to rest than to in 
dulgence. The simple habits of Deurckheim caused 


its burghers to shut their doors early, and, as usual, 
the gates of the town were closed when the bells 
sounded the stroke of eight. The peasants of the 
Jaegerthal had not even waited so long, before they 
sought their beds. 

It was, however, near ten, when a private door 
in the dwelling of Heinrich Frey opened, and a 
party of three individuals issued into the street. All 
were so closely muffled as effectually to conceai 
their persons. The leader, a man, paused to see 
that the way was clear, and then, beckoning to his 
companions, who were of the other sex, to follow, 
he pursued his way within the shadows thrown from 
the houses. It was not long ere they all reached 
the gate of the town, which opened to the hill of 
the Heidenmauer. 

There was a stronger watch afoot that night, than 
was usual in Deurckheim, though the city, and es 
pecially at a moment when armies ravaged the 
Palatinate, was never left without a proper guard. 
A few armed men paced the street, at the point 
where it terminated with the defences, and a sentinel 
was visible on the superior wall. 

" Who cometh V 9 demanded an arquebusier. 

The muffled man approached, and spoke to the 
leader of the guard in a low voice. It would seem, 
that he spoke him fair ; for no sooner did he utter 
the little he had to say, than a bustle among the 
citizens announced an eager desire to do his plea 
sure. The keys were produced, and a way made 
for the exit of the party. But the man went no 
farther. Having procured the egress of his compan 
ions, he returned into the town, stopping, however, 
to hold discourse with those on watch, before he 

When without the gate, the femalesbegan to a scend. 
The way was difficult, for it lay among terraces 
and vineyards, by means of winding narrow foot 


paths, and, as it appeared, the limbs of those who 
were now obliged to thread them, felt all the diffi 
culties of the steep acclivity. At length, though not 
without often stopping to breathe and rest, they 
reached the fallen pile of the ancient wall of the 
camp. Here both seated themselves, to recover 
their strength, in profound silence. They had 
mounted by means of a path that conducted them 
towards that extremity of the mountain which over 
looked the valley of our tale. 

The sky was covered with fleecy clouds, that dim 
med the light of the moon so as to render objects 
beneath uncertain and dull ; though occasionally the 
mild orb seemed to sail into a little field of blue, 
shedding all its light below. But these momentary 
illuminations were too fitful to permit the eye to be 
come accustomed to the change, and ere any saw 
distinctly, the driving vapor would again intercept 
the rays. To this melancholy character of the hour, 
must be added the plaintive sound of a night-breeze, 
which audibly rustled the cedars. 

A heavy respiration from the one of the two who, 
by her air and attire, was evidently the superior, 
was taken by the other as a permission to speak. 

" Well, thrice in my life have I mounted this hili, 
at night !" she said : " and few of my years could 
do the deed, by the light of the sun " 

" Hist, Use ! Hearest thou naught uncommon ?" 

" Naught but mine own voice, which, for so mute 
a person, is, in sooth, of little wont, " 

" Truly, there is other sound ! Come hither to the 
ruin ; I fear we are abroad at a perilous moment !" 

As both arose, there was but a minute oefore their 
persons were concealed in such a manner as to ren- 
ler it little probable that any but a very curious eye 
tfould remark their presence. It was evident that 
nany footsteps were approaching, and nearly in 
rieir direction. Use trembled, but her companion, 


more self-possessed, and better supported by her 
reason, was as much or even more excited by curi 
osity than by fear. The ruined hut, in which they 
stood, was within the cover of the cedars, where 
a dull light alone penetrated. By means of this 
light, however, a band of men was seen moving 
across the camp. They came in pairs, and their 
march was swift and nearly noiseless. The glitter- 
ng of a morion, as it passed beneath some opening 
in the trees, and the reclining arquebuses, no less 
than their order, showed them to be warriors. 

The line was long, extending to some hundreds 
of men. They came, in this swift and silent man 
ner, from the direction of the Jaegerthal, and passed 
away, among the melancholy cedars, in that of the 
plain of the Rhine. 

When the last of this long and ghost-like band 
nad disappeared, Use appeared to revive. 

" In very sooth," she said, " they seem to be 
men ! Do they, too, come to visit the Holy Hermit I 9 

" Believe it not. They have gone down by the 
rear of Deurckheim, and will soon be beyond our 
wishes, or our fears." 

" Lady ! Of what origin are they and on what 
errand do they come ?" 

This exclamation of old Use sufficiently betrayed 
the nature of her own doubts, though the firmness 
of her companion s manner proved that, now the 
armed men were gone, she no longer felt distrust. 

" This may, or may not, be a happy omen," she 
answered, musingly. " There was a goodly num 
ber, and warriors, too, of fair appearance !" 

" Thrice have I visited this camp at night, and 
never before has it been my fate to view its tenants! 
Thinkest thou they were Romans or are they the 
followers of the Hun ?" 

" They were living men but let us not forget 
our errand." 


Without permitting further discourse, the superior 
of the two then took the way towards the hut of the 
Hermit. At first her footstep was timid and unas 
sured ; for, strengthened as she was by reflection 
and knowledge, the sudden and sprite-like passage 
of such a line of warriors across the deserted camp, 
was indeed likely to affect the confidence of one 
even more bold. 

" Rest thy old limbs on this bit of fallen wall, good 
nurse," said the muffled female, " while I go within. 
Thou wilt await me here." 

" Go, of Heaven s mercy ! and speak the holy 
Anchorite fair. Take what thou canst of comfort 
and peace for thine own soul, and if there should be 
a blessing, or a relic more than thou needest, re 
member her who fondled thy infancy, and who, I 
may say, and say it I do with pride, made thee the 
woman of virtue and merit thou art." 

" God be with thee and with me !" murmured 
the female, as she moved slowly away. 

The visitor of the Anchorite hesitated at the dooi 
of his hut. Encouraged by sounds within, and cer 
tain that the holy man was still afoot, by the strong 
light that shone through the fissures of the wall, she 
at length summoned resolution to knock. 

" Enter, of God s will !" returned a voice from 

The door opened, and the female stood confront 
ed to the person of the Anchorite. The cloak and 
hood both fell from the female s head, as by an in 
voluntary weakness of her hands and each stood 
gazing long, wistfully, and perhaps in doubt, at the 
other. The female, more prepared for the interview, 
was the first to speak. 

" Odo !" she said, with melancholy emphasis. 


Eye then studied eye, in that eager and painfth 
gaze, with which the memory traces the changes 


that time and the passions produce in the human 
face. In that of Ulrike, however, there was little 
to be noted but the development of more mature 
womanhood, with such a shadowing of thought as 
deeper reflection and diminished hopes are apt to 
bring ; but, had she not been apprized of the person 
of him she sought, and had her memory not retained 
so vivid an impression of the past, it is probable 
that the wife of Heinrich Frey might not have re 
cognized the features of the gayest and handsomest 
cavalier of the Palatinate, in the sunken but still 
glowing eye, the grizzled beard, and the worn though 
bold lineaments of the Anchorite. 

" Thou Odo, and a penitent !" Ulrike added. 

" One of a stricken soul. Thou seest me, sworn 
to mortifications and sorrow." 

" If repentance come at all, let it be welcome. 
Thou leanest on a rock, and thy soul will be upheld." 

The Recluse made a vague gesture, which his 
companion believed to be the usual sign of the cross. 
She meekly imitated the symbol, and, bowing her 
head, repeated an ave. In all great changes in re 
ligions and politics, the spirit of party attaches im 
portance to immaterial things, which, by practice 
and convention, come to be considered as the evi 
dences of opinion. Thus it is, when revolutions are 
sudden and violent, that so many mistake their sym 
bols for their substance, and men cast their lives on 
the hazards of battle, in order to support an empty 
name, a particular disposition of colors in an ensign, 
or some idle significations of terms that were never 
well explained, long after the real merits of the 
controversy have been lost by the cupidity and false 
hood of those intrusted with the public welfare ; 
and thus it is, that here, where all change has been 
gradual and certain, that the neglect of these trifles 
has subjected the country to the imputation of in 
consistency, because, in attending so much to the 


substance of their work, it has overlooked so many 
of those outward signs, which, by being the instru 
ments of excitement in other regions, obtain a value 
that has no influence among ourselves. The Reform 
ation made early and rude inroads upon the for 
mula of the Romish church. The cross ceased to 
be a sign in favor with the Protestant ; and, after 
three centuries, it is just beginning to be admitted 
that this sacred symbol is a more fitting ornament 
of one of " those silent fingers pointing to the skies," 
which so touchingly adorn our churches, than the 
representation of a barn-yard fowl! Had Ulrike 
been more critical in>this sort of distinctions, or had 
her mind been less occupied with her own sad re 
flections, she might have thought the movement of 
the Hermit s hand, when he made the sign alluded 
to, had such a manner of indecision and doubt, as 
equally denotes one new in practices of this nature, 
or one about to abandon any long-established ritual. 
A.S it was, however, she noted nothing extraordinary, 
out silently took the seat to which the Anchorite 
pointed, while he placed himself on another. 

The earnest, wistful, and half mournful look of 
each was renewed. They sat apart, with the torch 
throwing its light fully upon both. 

" Grief hath borne heavily upon thee, Odo," said 
Ulrike. " Thou art much changed !" 

"And innocence and happiness have dealt ten 
derly by thee ! Thou hast well merited this favor, 

" Art thou long of this manner of life or touch 
I on a subject that may not be treated ?" 

" I know not that I may refuse to give the world 
the profit of my lesson much less can I pretend to 
mystery with thee." 

"I would gladly give thee consolation. Thou 
gnowest there is great comfort in sympathy." 


" Thy pity is next to the love of angels but why 
speak of this ? Thou art in the hut of a Hermit 
condemned, of his own conscience, to privation and 
penitence. Go to thy happy home, and leave me 
to the solemn duty which 1 have allotted to be done 
this night." 

As he spoke, the Anchorite folded his head in a 
mantle of coarse cloth, for he was evidently clad 
to go abroad, and he groaned. 

" Nay, Odo, I quit thee not, in this humor of thy 
mind. The sight of me hath added to thy grief, 
and it were uncharitable more, it were unkind, to 
leave thee thus." . 

" What wouldest thou, Ulrike ?" 

" Disburthen thy soul ; this life of seclusion hath 
heaped a load too heavy on thy thoughts. Where 
hast thou passed the years of thy prime, Odo what 
hath brought thee to this condition of bitterness ?" 

" Hast thou still so much of womanly mercy, as 
to feel an interest in the fate of an outcast ?" 

The paleness of Ulrike s cheek was succe**<ded by 
a mild glow. It was no sign of tumultuous deling, 
but a gentle proof that a heart like hers nev^r lost 
the affinities it had once fondly and warmlv cher 

" Can I forget the past ?" she answered. " Wert 
thou not the friend of my youth nay, wert tb^u not 
my betrothed?" 

" And dost thou acknowledge those long-che*shed 
ties ? Oh Ulrike ! with what maddened folly did I 
throw away a jewel beyond price ! But listen and 
thou shalt know in what manner God hath ave<ed 
himself and thee." 

The Burgomaster s wife, though secretly much 
agitated, sat patiently awaiting, while the Hernoit 
seemed preparing his mind for the revelation he v^si 
about to make. 

" Thou hast no need to hear aught of my youtj 


he at length commenced. " Thou well knowest that, 
an orphan from childhood, of no mean estate, and 
of noble birth, I entered on life exposed to all the 
hazards that beset the young and thoughtless. I had 
most of the generous impulses of one devoid of care, 
and a heart that was not needlessly shut against 
sympathy with the injured, and, I think, I may say 
one that was not closed against compassion " 

" Thou dost not justice to thyself, Odo ! Say that 
thy hand was open, and thy heart filled with gentle 

The Anchorite, humbled as he was by penitence 
and self-devotion, did not hear this opinion, uttered 
by lips so gentle and so true, without a change of 
features. His eye lighted, and for a moment it gazed 
towards his companion with some of its former 
bright youthful expression. But the change escaped 
Ulrike,*who was occupied with the generous impulse 
that caused her, thus involuntarily, to vindicate the 
Hermit to himself. 

"It might have been so," the latter resumed, coldly, 
after a moment of thought ; " but in youth, unless 
watched and wisely directed, our best qualities may 
become instruments of our fall. I was of violent 
passions above all; miserable traces in that unerring 
index, the countenance, prove how violent !" 

Ulrike had no answer to this remark ; for she had 
felt how easy it is for the strong of character to 
attach the mild, and how common it is for the human 
heart to set value on qualities that serve to throw its 
own into reKef. 

" When I knew thee, Ulrike, the influence of thy 
gentleness, the interest thou gavest me reason to 
believe thou felt in my happiness, and the reverence 
which the young of our sex so readily pay to in 
nocence, and beauty, and faith, in thine, served to 
tame the lion of my reckless temper, and to bring 
me, for a time, in subjection to thy gentleness." 


His companion looked grateful for his praise, but 
she remained silent. 

" The tie between the young and guiltless is one 
of nature s holiest mysteries ! I loved thee, Ulrike, 
purely, and in perfect faith ! The reverence I bear, 
here in my solitude and penance, to these signs of 
sacred character, is not deeper, less tinctured with 
human passion, or more fervent, than the respect I 
felt for thy virgin innocence !" 

Ulrike trembled, but it was like the leaf quivering 
at the passage of a breath of air. 

" For this I gave thee credit, Odo," she whispered, 
evidently afraid to trust her voice. 

" Thou didst me justice. When thy parents con 
sented to our union, I looked forward to the mar 
riage with blessed hope ; for young though I was, I 
so well understood myself, as to foresee that some 
spirit, persuasive, good, and yet firm as thine, was 
necessary to tame me. Woman winds herself about 
the heart of man by her tenderness, nay, by her 
very dependence, in a manner to effect that which 
his pride would refuse to a power more evident. 

"And couldst thou feel all this?" 

" Ulrike, I felt more, was convinced of more, 
and dreaded more, than I ever dared avow. But 
all feelings of pride are now past. What further 
shall I say ? Thou knowest the manner in which 
bold spirits began to assail the mysteries and dogmas 
of the venerable Church that has so long governed 
Christendom, and that some were so hardy as to 
anticipate the reasonings and changes of more pru 
dent heads, by rash acts. Tis ever thus with young 
and heated reformers of abuses. Seeing naught 
but the wrong, they forget the means by which it 
has been produced, and overlook the sufficient 
causes which may mitigate, if they do not j k istitr 
the evil." 

" And this unhappily was thy temper ?" 


" I deny it not. Young, and without knowledge 
of the various causes that temper every theory 
when reduced to practice, I looked eagerly to tne 
end alone." 

Though Ulrike longed to extort some apology 
from the penitent for his own failings, she continued 
silent. After minutes of thought, the discourse at 
length proceeded. 

" There were some among thy friends, Odo, who 
believed the outrage less than the convent reported ?" 

" They trusted too much to their wishes," said 
the Anchorite, in a subdued tone. "It is most true, 
that, heated with wine, and maddened with anger, I 
did violence, in presence of my armed followers, to 
those sacred elements which Catholics so reverence. 
Jn a moment of inebriated frenzy, I believed the 
hoarse applause of drunken parasites, and the con 
fusion of a priest, of more account than the just 
anger of God ! I impiously trampled on the host, 
and sorely hath God since trampled on my spirit !" 

" Poor Odo ! That wicked act changed the course 
of both our lives ! and dost thou now adore that 
Being to whom this great indignity was offered 
Hast thy mind returned to the faith of thy youth 1" 

" Tis not necessary, in order to feel the burthen 
of my guilt !" exclaimed the Anchorite, whose eye 
began to lose the human expression which had been 
kindled by communion with this gentle being, in 
gleamings of a remorse that had been so long 
fed by habits of morbid devotion. " Is not the Lord 
of the universe my God ? The insult was to him ; 
whether there be error in this or that form of devo 
tion, I was in his temple, at the foot of his altar, in 
the presence of his spirit There did I mock his 
rule, and defy his power ; and this for a silly triumph 
over a terrified monk !" 

"Heart-stricken Odo! Where soughtest thou 
refuge, after the frantic act ?" 


Anchorite looked intently at his companion, 
as if a flood of distressing and touching images 
were pressing painfully upon his memory. " My 
first thought was of thee," he said; "the rash blow 
of my sword was no sooner given, than it seemed 
suddenly to open an abyss between us. I knew thy 
gentle piety, and could not, even in that moment of 
frenzy, deceive myself as to thy decision. When 
in a place of safety, I wrote the letter which thou 
answered, and which answer was so firm and ad 
mirable a mixture of holy horror and womanly 
feeling. When thou renounced me, I became a 
vagrant on earth, and from that hour to the moment 
of my return hither, have I been a wanderer. Much 
influence and heavy fines saved my estates, which 
the life of a pilgrim and a soldier has greatly aug 
mented, but never till this summer have I felt the 
courage necessary to revisit the scenes of my youth." 

" And whither strayed thou, Odo ?" 

" I have sought relief in every device of man : 
the gaiety and dissipation of capitals hermitages 
(for this is but the fourth of which I am the tenant) 
arms and rude hazards by sea. Of late have I 
much occupied myself in the defence of Rhodes, 
that unhappy and fallen bulwark of Christendom. 
But wherever I have dwelt, or in whatever occupa 
tion I have sought relief, the recollection of my 
crime, and of its punishment, pursues me. Ulrike, I 
am a man of woe !" 

"Nay, dear Odo, there is mercy for offenders 
more heavy than thou. Thou wilt return to thy 
long-deserted castle, and be at peace." 

" And thou, Ulrike ! hath my crime caused thee 
sorrow ? Thou, at least, art happy ?" 

The question caused the wife of Heinrich Frey 
uneasiness. Her sentiments towards Odo von Ritter- 
stein had partaken of passion, and were still clothed 
with hues of the imagination ; while her attachment 


to the Burgomaster ran in the smoother channel of 
duty and habit : Still time, a high sense of her sex s 
obligations, and the common bond of Meta, kept 
her feelings in the subdued state which most fitted 
her present condition. Had her will been consulted, 
she would not have touched on this portion of the 
subject at all ; but since it was introduced, she felt 
the absolute necessity of meeting it with composure. 

" I am happy in an honest husband and an affec 
tionate child," she said; "set thy heart at rest on 
this account we were not fitted for each other, 
Odo; thy birth, alone, offered obstacles we might 
not properly. have overcome." 

The Anchorite bowed his head, appearing to 
respect her reserve. The silence that succeeded 
was not free from embarrassment It was relieved 
by the tones of a bell that came from the hill of 
Limburg. The Anchorite arose, and all other feel 
ing was evidently lost in a sudden return of that 
diseased repentance which had so long haunted him, 
and which, in truth, had more than once gone nigh 
to unsettle his reason. 

" That signal, Ulrike, is for me." 

" And dost thou go forth to Limburg at this hour ?" 

" An humble penitent I have made my peace 
with the Benedictines by means of gold, and I go 
to struggle for my peace with God. This is the 
anniversary of my crime, and there will be mid 
night masses for its expiation." 

The wife of Heinrich Frey heard of his intention 
without surprise, though she regretted the sudden 
interruption of their interview. 

" Odo, thy blessing !" said Ulrike, kneeling. 

" Thou, ask this mockery of me !" cried the Her 
mit, wildly. "Go, Ulrike ! leave me with my sins." 

The Anchorite appeared irresolute for a moment, 
and then he rushed madly from the hut, leaving the 
wife of Heinrich Frey still kneeling in its centre. 



Mona, thy Druid rites awake the dead ! 


ULRIKE was in the habit of making frequent and 
earnest appeals to God, and she now prayed fer 
vently, where she knelt. Her attention was recalled 
to earth, by a violent shaking of the shoulder. 

" Ulrike, child ! Frau Frey 1" exclaimed the as 
siduous Use. " Art glued to the ground by necro 
mancy ? Why art thou here, and whither hath the 
holy man sped ?" 

" Sawest thou Odo von Ritterstein ?" 

" Whom ! Art mad, Frau ? I saw none but the 
blessed Anchorite, who passed me an he were an 
angel taking wing for heaven; and though I knelt 
and beseeched but a look of grace, his soul was too 
much occupied with its mission to note a sinner. 
Had I been evil as some that might be named, this 
slight might give some alarm; but being that I am, 
I set it down rather to the account of merit than to 
that of any need. Nay, I saw naught but the 

" Then didst thou see the unhappy Herr von Ritter- 
stein !" 

Use stood aghast. :; / 

" Have we harbored a wolf in sheep s clothing ." 
she cried, when the power of speech returned. 
" Hath the Palatinate knelt, and wept, and prayed at 
the feet of a sinner, like ourselves nay, even worse 
than ourselves, after all ! Hath what hath passed 
for true coin been naught but base metal our unc 
tion, hypocrisy our hopes, wicked delusions our 
holy pride, vanity ?" 

" Thou sawest Odo von Ritterstein, Use," returned 
Ulrike, rising, "but thou sawest a devout man." *./ 


Then giving her arm to the nurse, for of the two 
the attendant most required assistance, she took the 
way from the hut. While walking among the fallen 
walls of the deserted camp, Ulrike endeavored to 
bring her companion to consider the character and 
former sins of the Anchorite with more lenity. The 
task was not easy, for Use had been accustomed to 
think the truant Odo altogether abandoned of God, 
and opinions that have been pertinaciously main 
tained for twenty years, are not gotten rid of in a 
moment. Still there is a process by which the hu 
man mind can be made to do more than justice, 
when prejudice is finally eradicated. It is by this 
species of reaction, that we see the same individuals 
now reprobated as monsters, and now admired as 
heroes ; the common sentiment as rarely doing strict 
justice in excessive applause as in excessive con 

We do not mean to say, however, that the 
sentiment of Use towards the Anchorite underwent 
this violent revulsion from detestation to reverence ; 
for the utmost that Ulrike could obtain in his fa 
vor, was an admission that he was a sinner in 
whose behalf all devout Christians might without 
any manifest impropriety occasionally say an ave. 
^his small concession of Use sufficiently favored the 
wishes of her mistress, which were to follow the 
Hermit to the Abbey church, to kneel at its altars, 
and to mingle her prayers with those of the penitent, 
on this the anniversary of his crime, for pardon 
and peace. We pretend not to show by what cord 
of human infirmity the wife of Heinrich Frey was 
led into the indulgence of a sympathy so delicate, 
with one to whom her hand had formerly been 
plighted ; for we are not acting here in the capacity 
of censors of female propriety, but as those who 
endeavor to expose the workings of the heart, be 
they for good or be they for evil. Tt is sufficient 


for our object, that the result of the whole picture 
shall be a lesson favorable to virtue and truth. 

So soon as Ulrike found she could lead her com 
panion in the way she wished, without incurring the 
risk of listening to stale morals dealt out with a 
profuse garrulity, she took the path directly towards 
the convent. As the reader has most probably pe 
rused our Introduction, there is no necessity of say 
ing more than that Ulrike and her attendant pro 
ceeded by the route we ourselves took in going from 
one mountain to the other. But the progress of Use 
was far slower than that described as our own, in 
ascending to the Heidenmauer under the guidance 
of Christian Kinzel. The descent itself was long 
and slow, for one of her infirmities and years, and 
the ascent far more tedious and painful. During 
the latter, even Ulrike was glad to halt often, to 
recover breath, though they went up by the horse 
path over which they had ridden in the morning. 

The character of the night had not changed. 
The moon appeared to wade among fleecy clouds 
as before, and the light was misty but sufficient to 
render the path distinct. At this hour, the pile of 
the convent loomed against the sky, with its dark 
Gothic walls and towers, resembling a work of 
giants, in which those who had reared the structure 
were reposing from their labors. Accustomed as 
she was to worship at its altars, Ulrike did not now 
approach the gate without a sentiment of admiration. 
She raised her eyes to the closed portal, to the long 
ranges of dark and sweeping walls, and every 
where she met evidences of midnight tranquillity. 
There was a faint glow upon the side of the narrow 
giddy tower, that contained the bells, and which 
flanked the gate; and she knew that it came from a 
lamp that burnt before the image of the Virgin in 
the court. This gave no sign that even the porter 
was awake. She stepped, however, to the wicket, 



and rang the night-bell. The grating of the bolts 
quickly announced the presence of one within. 

" Who cometh to Limburg at this hour ?" demand 
ed the porter, holding the wicket chained, as if dis 
trusting treachery. 

"A penitent to pray." 

The tones of the voice assured the keeper of the 
gate, who had means also of examining the stranger 
with the eye, and he so far opened the wicket as to 
permit the form of Ulrike to be distinctly seen. 

" It is not usual to admit thy sex within these 
holy walls, after the morning mass hath been said, 
and the confessionals are empty." 

" There are occasions on which the rule may be 
broken, and the solemn ceremony of to-night is one." 

" I know not that. Our reverend Abbot is severe 
in the observance of all decencies, " 

" Nay, I am one closely allied to him in whose 
behalf this service is given," said Ulrike, hastily. 
" Repel me not, for the love of God !" 

" Art thou of his kin and blood ?" 

" Not of that tie," she answered, in the checked 
manner of one who felt her own precipitation, "but 
bound to his hopes by the near interests of affection 
and sympathy." 

She paused, for at that instant the form of the 
Anchorite filled the space beside the porter. He 
had been kneeling before the image of a crucifix 
hard by, and had been called from his prayers by 
the soft appeal that betrayed Ulrike s interest in him, 
very tone of which went to his heart. 

"She is mine," he said, authoritatively; "she 
nd her attendant are both mine. Let them enter !" 

Ulrike hesitated she scarce knew why, and 
Use, wearied with her efforts, and impatient to be at 
rest, was obliged to impel her forward. The Her 
mit, as if suddenly recalled to the duty on which 
iie had come to the convent, turned and glided away 
Z 2 


The porter, who had received his instructions rela 
tive to him for whom the mass was to be said, of 
fered no further obstacle, but permitted Use to con 
duct her mistress within. No sooner were the fe 
males in the court, than he closed and barred the 

Ulrike hesitated no longer, though she trembled 
in every limb. Dragging the loitering Use after her 
with difficulty, she took the way directly towards the 
door of the chapel. With the exception of the 
porter at the wicket, and the lamp before the Vir 
gin, all seemed as dim and still within as it had been 
without the Abbey-walls. Not even a sentinel of 
Duke Friedrich s men-at-arms was visible ; but this 
occasioned no surprise, as these troops were known 
to keep as much aloof from the more religious part 
of the tenants of Limburg, as was possible. The 
spacious buildings, in the rear of the Abbot s dwell 
ing, might well have lodged double their number, 
and in these it was probable they were now housed. 
As for the monks, the lateness of the hour, and the 
nature of the approaching service, fully accounted 
for their absence. 

The door of the Abbey-church was always open. 
This usage is nearly common to every Catholic place 
of worship in towns of any size, and it contains an 
affecting appeal, to the passenger, to remember the 
Being in whose honor the temple has been raised. 
The custom is, in general, turned to account equally 
by the pious and the inquisitive, the amateur of the 
arts, and the worshipper of God ; and it is to be re 
gretted that the former, more especially when they 
belong to a different persuasion or sect, should not \ 
oftener remember, that their taste becomes bad, 
when it is indulged at the expense of that reverence, 
which should mark all the conduct of man in thei 
immediate presence of his Creator. On the present 
occasion, however, there were none present to 


treat either the altar or its worship with levity. 
When Ulrike and Use entered the chapel, the candles 
of the great altar were lighted, and the lamps of 
the choir threw a gloomy illumination on its sombre 
architecture. The fretted and painted vault above, 
the carved oak of the stalls, the images of the altar, 
and the grave and kneeling warriors in stone, that 
decorated the tombs, stood out prominent in the re 
lief of their own deep shadows. 

If it be desirable to quicken devotion by physical 
auxiliaries, surely all that was necessary to reduce 
he mind to deep and contemplative awe existed 
nere. The officials of the altar swept past the gor 
geous and consecrated structure, in their robes of 
duty ; grave, expectant monks were in their stalls, 
and Boniface himself sat on his throne, mitred and 
clad in vestments of embroidery. It is possible that 
an inquisitive and hostile eye might have detected 
in some weary countenance or heavy eyelid, long 
ings for the pillow, and little sympathy in the offices ; 
but there were others who entered on their duties 
with zeal and conviction. Among the last was 
Father Arnolph, whose pale features and thoughtful 
eye were seen in his stall, where he sat regarding 
the preparations with the tranquil patience of one 
accustomed to seek his happiness in the duties of 
his vow. To him might be put in contrast the un 
quiet organs and severe, rather than mortified, linea 
ments of Father Johan, who glanced hurriedly from 
the altar, and its rich decorations, to the spot where 
the Anchorite knelt, as if to calculate to what degree 
of humiliation and bitterness it were possible to 
reduce the bruised spirit of the penitent. 

Odo of Ritter stein, for there no longer remains a 
reason for refusing to the Anchorite his proper ap 
pellation, had placed himself near the railing at the 
foot of the choir, on his knees, where he continued 
with his eyes fixed on the golden vessel that con- 


tained the consecrated host he had once outraged 
the offence which he had now come, as much as in 
him lay, to expiate. The light fell but faintly on his 
form, but it served to render every furrow that grief 
and passion had drawn athwart his features more 
evident. Ulrike studied his countenance, seen as it 
was in circumstances of so little flattery; and, 
trembling, she knelt by the side of Use, on the other 
side of the little gate that served to communicate 
between the body of the church and the choir. Just 
as she had assumed this posture, Gottlob stole from 
among the pillars, and knelt in the distance, on the 
flags of the great aisle. He had come to the mass 
as a ceremony refused to none. 

So strong was the light around the altar, and so 
obscure the aisles below, that it was with difficulty 
Bonifacius could assure himself of the presence of 
him in whose behalf this office was had. But when, 
by contracting his heavy front, so as to form a sort 
of screen of his shaggy brows, he was enabled to 
distinguish the form of Odo, he seemed satisfied, and 
motioned for the worship to proceed. 

There is little need to repeat the details of a cer 
emony it has been our office already to relate in 
these pages ; but as the music and other services 
had place in the quiet and calm of midnight, they 
were doubly touching and solemn. There was the 
same power of the single voice as in the morning, 
or rather on the preceding day, for the turn of the 
night was now passed, and the same startling effect 
was produced, even on those who were accustomed 
to its thrilling and superhuman melody. As the 
mass proceeded, the groans of the Anchorite became 
so audible, that, at times, these throes of sorrow 
threatened to interrupt the ceremonies. The heart 
of Ulrike responded to each sigh that escaped the 
bosom of Odo, and, ere the first prayers were ended, 
her face was bathed in tears. 


The examination of the different countenances of 
the brotherhood, during tnis scene, would have been 
a study worthy of a deep inquirer into the varieties 
of human character, or of those who love to trace 
the various forms in which the same causes work 
on different tempers. Each groan of the Anchorite 
lighted the glowing features of Father Johan with a 
species of holy delight, as if he triumphed in the 
power of the offices ; and, at each minute, his head 
was bent inquiringly in the direction of the railing, 
while his ear listened eagerly for the smallest sound 
that might favor his desires. On the other hand, 
the workings of the Prior s features were those of 
sorrow and sympathy. Every sigh that reached 
him awakened a feeling of pity blended with pious 
joy, it is true but a pity that was deep, distinct, 
and human. Bonifacius listened like one in authority, 
coldly, and with little concern in what passed, be 
yond that which was attached to a proper observ 
ance of the ritual ; and, from time to time, he bent 
his head on his hand, while he evidently pondered 
on things that had little connexion with what was 
passing before his eyes. Others of the fraternity 
manifested more or less of devotion, according to 
their several characters; and a few found means to 
obtain portions of sleep, as the rites admitted of the 

In this manner did the community of Limburg 
pass the first hours of the day, or rather of the 
morning, that succeeded the sabbath of this tale. It 
may have been, afterwards, source of consolation 
to those among them that were most zealous in the 
observance of their vows, that they were thus pass 
ed ; for events were near that had a lasting influ 
ence not only on their own destinies, but on those 
of the very region in which they dwelt. 

The strains of the last hymn were rising into the 
vault above the choir, when, amid the calm that 


exquisite voice never failed to produce, there came 
a low rushing sound, which might have been taken 
for the murmuring of wind, or for the suppressed 
hum of a hundred voices. When it was first heard, 
stealing among the ribbed arches of the chapel, the 
cow-herd arose from his knees, and disappeared in 
the gloomy depths of the church. The monks turned 
their heads, as by a general impulse, to listen, but 
the common action was as quickly succeeded by 
grave attention to the rites. Bonifacius, indeed, 
seemed uneasy, though it was like a man who scarce 
knew why. His gray eyes roamed over the body 
of darkness that reigned among the distant columns 
of the church, and then they settled, with vacancy, 
on the gorgeous vessels of the altar. The hymn 
continued, and its soothing power appeared to quiet 
every mind, when the sound of tumult at the great 
gate of the outer wall became too audible and dis 
tinct to admit of doubt. The whole brotherhood 
arose as a man, and the voice of the singer was 
mute. Ulrike clasped her hands in agony, while 
even Odo of Ritterstein forgot his grief, in the rude 
nature of the interruption. 



" Thy reason, dear venom, give thy reason ! * 

Twelfth Night. 

IT is scarcely necessary to explain, that the man 
who had accompanied Ulrike and Use to the gate 
of Deurckheim, was Heinrich Frey. No sooner 
had his wife disappeared, and his short conference 
with the men on watch was ended, than the Burgo 
master hurried towards that quarter of the town 
which lay nearest to the entrance of the Jaegerthal. 
Here he found collected a band of a hundred 
burghers, chosen from among their townsmen, for 
resolution and physical force. They were all equip 
ped, according to the fashion of the times, with such 
weapons of offence as suited their several habits and 
experience. We might also add, that, as each good 
man, on going forth on the present occasion, had 
seen fit to consult his bosom s partner, there was 
more than the usual display of headpieces, and 
breastplates, and bucklers. 

When with his followers, and assured of their 
exactitude and numbers, the Burgomaster, who was 
a man nowise deficient in courage, ordered the 
postern to be opened, and issued first himself into 
the field. The townsmen succeeded in their allotted 
order, observing the most profound silence. Instead 
of taking the direct road to the gorge, Heinrich 
crossed the rivulet, by a private bridge, pursuing a 
footpath that led him up the ascent of the most ad 
vanced of the mountains, on that side of the valley. 
The reader will understand, that this movement 
placed the party on the hill which lay directly oppo 
site to that of the Heidenmauer. At the period of the 
tale, cedars grew on the two mountains alike, ana 
the townsmen, of course, had the advantage of be- 


ing concealed from observation. A half-hour was 
necessary to effect this lodgment, with sufficient 
caution and secrecy; but once made, the whole 
band seemed to consider itself beyond the danger 
of discovery. The men then continued the march 
with less attention to order and silence, and even 
their leaders began to indulge in discourse. Their 
conversation was, however, guarded, like that of 
those who felt they were engaged in an enterprise 
of hazard. 

" Tis said, neighbor Dietrich," commenced the 
Burgomaster, speaking to a sturdy smith, who acted 
on this occasion as lieutenant to the commander-in- 
chief, an honor that was mainly due to the power 
of his arm, and who, emboldened by his temporary 
rank, had advanced nearly to Heinrich s side, " Tis 
said, neighbor Dietrich, that these Benedictines are 
like bees, who never go forth but in the season of 
plenty, and rarely return without rich contribution 
to their hive. Thou art a reflecting and solid towns 
man ; one that is little moved by the light opinions 
of the idle, and a burgher that knoweth his own 
rights, which is as much as to say, his own interests, 
and one that well understandeth the necessity of 
preserving all of our venerable usages and laws, at 
least in such matters as touch the permanency of 
the welfare of those that may lay claim to have a 
w r elfare. I speak not now of the varlets who be 
long, as it were, neither to heaven nor earth, being 
condemned of both to the misery of houseless and 
irresponsible knaves; but of men of substance, that, 
like thee and thy craft, pay scot and lot, keep bed 
and board, and are otherwise to be marked for their 
usefulness and natural rights ; and this brings me 
to my point, which is neither more nor less than to 
say, that God hath created all men equal, and there 
fore it is our right, no less than our duty, to see that 
Deurckheim is not wronged, especially in that par* 


of her interests that belong, in particularity, to her 
substantial inhabitants. Do I say that which is rea 
sonable, or do I deceive both myself and thee, friend 
smith ?" 

Heinrich had a reputation for eloquence and logic, 
especially among his own partisans, and his appeal 
was now made to one who was little likely to refuse 
him any honor. Dietrich was one of those anima 
philosophers who seem specially qualified by nature 
to sustain a parliamentary leader, possessing a good 
organ, with but an indifferent intellect to derange 
its action. His mind had precisely the description 
of vacuum which is so necessary to produce a good 
political or moral echo, more particularly when the 
proposition is false ; for the smallest addition to his 
capacity might have had such an effect on his re 
plies, as a sounding-board is known to possess in 
defeating the repetitions of the voice. 

" By Saint Benedict, Master Heinrich," he an 
swered, "for it is permitted to invoke the saint 
though we so little honor his monks, it were well for 
Duke Friedrich had he less wine in his Heidelburg 
tuns, and more of your wisdom in his councils ! 
What you have just proclaimed, is no other than 
what I have myself thought these many years, 
though never able to hammer down an idea into 
speech so polished and cutting as this of your wor 
ship ! Let them that deny what I say, take up their 
weapons, and I will repose on my sledge as on an 
argument not to be answered. We must, in sooth, 
see Deurckheim righted, and more is the need, since 
there is this equality between all men, as hath just 
been so well said/ 

" Nay, this matter of equality is one much spoken 
of, but as little understood. Look you, good Diet 
rich ; give me thy ear for a few minutes, and thou 
shalt get an insight into its justice. Here are we 
of the small towns born with all properties and wants 
2 A 


of those in your large capitals are we not men to 
need our privileges or are we not human, that air 
is unnecessary for breath I think thou wilt not gain 
say either of these truths." 

" He that would do it, is little better than an ass!" 

" This being established, therefore, naught remains 
but to show the conclusion. We, having the same 
rights as the largest towns in the Empire, should be 
permitted to enjoy them ; else is language little bet 
ter than mockery, and a municipal privilege of no 
more value than a serf s oath." 

" This is so clear, I marvel any should deny it ! 
And what say they of the villages, Master Burgo 
master ? Will they, think you, sustain us in this holy 
cause ?" 

" Nay, I touch not on the villages, good smith, 
since they have neither burgomasters nor burghers ; 
and where there is so little to sustain a cause, of 
what matter is resistance. I speak chiefly of our 
selves, and of towns having means, which is a case 
so clear, that it were manifest weakness to con 
found it with any other. He that hath right of his 
side were a fool to enter into league with any of 
doubtful franchises. All have their natural and holy 
advantages, but those are the best which are most 
clear by their riches and force." 

"I pray you, worshipful Heinrich, grant me but 
a single favor, an you love me so much as a hair ?" 

" Name thy will, smith." 

"That I may speak of this among the towns 
men! such wisdom, and conclusion so evident, 
should not be cast to the winds !" 

" Thou knowest I do not discourse for vain ap 

" By my father s bones ! I will touch upon it with 
discretion, most honorable Burgomaster, and not as 
one of vain speech your honor knows the difference 


between a mere street babbler and one that hath a 

" Have it as thou wilt ; but I take not the merit of 
originality, for there are many good and substantial 
citizens, and some statesmen, who think much in 
this manner " 

" Well, it is happy that God hath not gifted all 
alike, else might there have been great and unrea 
sonable equality, and some would have arrived to 
honors they were little able to bear. But having so 
clearly explained your most excellent motives, wor 
shipful Heinrich, wilt condescend to lighten the 
march by an application of its truth to the enter 
prise on which we go forth 1" 

" That may be done readily, for no tower in the 
Palatinate is more obvious. Here is Limburg, and 
yon is Deurckheim ; rival communities, as it were, in 
interests and hopes, and of necessity but little dis 
posed to do each other favor. Nature, which is a 
great master of all questions of right and wrong, 
sayeth that Deurckheim shall not harm Limburg, nor 
Limburg, Deurckheim. Is this clear ?" 

" Himmel ! as the flame of a furnace, honorable 

" Now, it being thus settled, that there shall be no 
interference in each other s concerns, we yield to 
necessity, and go forth armed, in order to prevent 
Limburg doing wrong to a principle that all just 
men admit to be inviolable. You perceive the nicety; 
we confess that what we do is weak in argument, 
and the greater need it should be strong in execution. 
We are no madcaps to unsettle a principle to gain 
our ends, but then all must have heed to their inter 
ests, and what we do is with a reserve of doctrine." 

" This relieves my soul from a mountain !" ex 
claimed the smith, who had listened with a sort of 
earnestness that denotes honesty of purpose; " naught 


can be more just, and woe to him that shall gainsaj 
it, while back of mine carries harness !" 

In this manner did Heinrich and his lieutenant 
lighten the way by subtle discourse, and by argu 
ments that we feel some consciousness may sub 
ject us to the imputation of plagiarisms, but for 
which we can vouch as genuine, on the authority 
of Christian Kinzel, already so often named. 

The high and disinterested intellect that is active 
in regulating the interests of the world has been so 
often alluded to, in other places and on different 
occasions, that it is quite useless to expatiate on it 
here. We have already said, that Heinrich Frey 
was a stout friend of the conservative principle, 
which, reduced to practice, means little more than, 

" They shall get, who have the power. 
And they shall keep, who can." 

Justice, like liberality, has great reservations, and 
perhaps there are few countries in the present ad 
vanced condition of the human species, that does 
not daily employ some philosophy of the same 
involved character as this of Heinrich, supported 
by reasoning as lucid, irresistible, and nervous. 

The direction in which the band of Deurckheim- 
ers proceeded, led them, by a tortuous way, it is 
true, but surely, to the side of the valley on which 
the castle of Hartenburg stood. Heimich, how 
ever, brought his followers to a halt long before 
they had made the circuit which would have been 
necessary to reach the hold of Count Emich. The 
place he chose for the collection and review of the 
band, was about midway between Deurckheim and 
the castle, pursuing a line that conformed to the 
sinuosities and variations of the foot of the moun 
tain. It was in an open grove, where the shadows 
of the trees effectually concealed the presence of 
the unusual company. Here refreshments were taken 


Dy a.., for the good people of the town were much 
addicted to practices of this consolatory nature, and 
the occasion must have been doubly urgent that 
could induce them to overlook the calls of the ap 

" Seest thou aught of our allies, honest smith ?" 
demanded Heinrich of his lieutenant, who had been 
sent a short distance along the brow of the hill to 
reconnoitre. " It were unseemly in men so trained 
as our friends, to be lacking at need." 

" Doubt them not, Master Heinrich. I know the 
knaves well ; they merely tarry to lighten their packs 
by the way, in consumptions like this of our own. 
Dost see the manner in which the Benedictines affect 
tranquillity, worshipful Burgomaster?" 

" Tis their usual ghostly hypocrisy, brave Diet 
rich ; but we shall uncloak them ! Good will come 
of our enterprise, for, of a truth, by this spirit on 
our part, which shall for ever demonstrate the neces 
sity of not meddling in the concerns of a neighbor, 
we settle all uncertainties between us. By the 
Kings of Koeln ! is it to be tolerated, that a gowns 
man shall hoodwink a townsman to the day of judg 
ment ? Is there not a light in the Abbey-chapel ?" 

" The reverend fathers pray against their enemies. 
Dost think, worshipful Burgomaster, that the tale 
concerning the manner in which those heavy stones 
were carried upon Limburg hill, has received small 
additions by oft telling ?" 

" It may be thus, Dietrich ; for naught, unless it 
may be damp snow, gaineth more by repeated roll 
ing, than your story." 

"And gold," rejoined the smith, chuckling in a 
manner not to displease his superior, since it palpa 
bly intimated the idea he entertained of the Burgo 
master s success in accumulating money, an idea 
that is always pleasant to those who deem pros 
perity of this nature to be the principal end of life. 
2 A2 


" Gold well rolled increases marvellously ! I am 
of your mind, Master Heinrich ; for to speak truth, 
I much question whether the Evil Spirit would have 
troubled himself with so light an affair as carrying 
the smaller materials a foot. As to the heavy col 
umns, and the hewn key-stones, with other loads of 
weight, it was not so much beneath his character, 
and may be considered as probable. I have never 
contradicted that part of the legend, for it hath like 
lihood to back it, but ha ! here cometh the succor." 

The approach of a band of men, who came from 
the direction of Hartenburg, always keeping along 
the margin of the hills, and within the shadows, 
absorbed all attention. This second party was 
treble the force of the townsmen, like them it was 
armed, and, like them, it showed every sign of 
military preparation. When it had halted, which 
it did at a little distance from the band of Heinrich, 
as if it were not deemed advisable to blend the two 
bodies in one, a warrior advanced to the spot where 
the Burgomaster had taken post. The new comer 
was well but lightly armed, wearing head-piece and 
harness, and carrying his sword at rest. 

" Who leadeth the Deurckheimers ?" he demanded, 
when near enough to trust his voice. 

" Their poor Burgomaster, in person ; would there 
had been a better for the duty !" 

" Welcome, worshipful sir," said the other, bow 
ing with more than usual respect. "In my turn, I 
come at the head of Count Emich s followers." 

" How art thou styled, brave captain ?" 

" Tis a name but little worthy to be classed with 
yours, Herr Frey. But such as it is, I disown it 
not. I am Berchthold Hintermayer." 

" Umph ! A young leader for so grave an enter 
prise ! I had hoped for the honor of thy lord s com 

" I am commanded to explain this matter to your 


worship." Berchthold then walked aside with the 
Burgomaster, while Dietrich proceeded to take a 
nearer view of the allied force. 

It is well known to most of our readers, that 
every baron of note, at the time of which we write, 
entertained more or fewer dependants, who, succeed 
ing to the regularly banded vassals of the earlier ages, 
held a sort of middle station between the servitor 
and the soldier. There stands a noble ruin, called 
Pierrefont, within a day s ride of Paris, and on the 
very verge of a royal forest, a forest that in some 
of its features approaches nearer to an American 
wood than any we have yet met in the other hemi 
sphere, which castle of Pierrefont is known to have 
been the hold of one of these warlike nobles, who 
did many and manifest wrongs to the lieges of the 
king, even in an age considerably later than this of 
our tale. In short, European society, just then, was 
in the state of transition, beginning to reject the 
trammels of feudalism, and struggling to wear its 
bonds, at least in a new and less troublesome form. 
But the importance and political authority of the 
Counts of Leiningen fully entitled them to preserve 
a train that barons of lesser note were beginning to 
abandon, and consequently all of their castles had 
many of these loose follow ers, who have since been 
entirely superseded by the regularly embodied and 
trained troops of our own time. 

The smith found much to approve, and something 
to censure, in the party that Berchthold had led to 
their support. So far as recklessness of character 
and object, audacity in acts, and indifference to moral 
checks, were concerned, a better troop could not 
have been desired, for more than half of them were 
men who lived by the excesses of the community, 
occupying exactly that position in the social scale 
that fungi do in the vegetable, or that sores and 
blotches fill in the physical economy of the species. 


But in respect to thewes and sinews, a primary con 
sideration with the smith in estimating the value of 
every man he saw, they were much interior, as a 
body, to the townsmen, in whom orderly living, 
gainful and regular industry, had permitted the ani 
mal to become developed. There was, however, a 
band of peasants, drawn from among the mountains, 
or inhabitants of the hamlet beneath the castle walls, 
who, though less menacing in air, and bold of speech, 
were youths that Dietrich thought only required the 
Deurckheim training to become heroes. 

When Heinrich and Berchthold rejoined their re 
spective followers, after the private discourse, all 
discontent was banished from the former s brow, 
and both immediately occupied themselves in making 
the dispositions necessary to the success of the com 
mon enterprise. The wx>od, in which they had halted, 
lay directly opposite to the inner extremity of the 
Abbey hill, from which it was separated by a broad 
and perfectly even meadow. The distance, though 
not great, was sufficient to render it probable, that 
the approach of the invaders would be seen by some 
of the sentinels, who, there was little doubt, the men- 
at-arms, lent by the Elector to the monks, maintain 
ed, were it only for their own security. Limburg 
was not a fortress, its impunity being due altogether 
to the moral power that the Church, to which it 
belonged, still wielded, though it were so much 
weakened in that part of Germany ; but its walls 
were high and solid, its towers numerous, its edifices 
massive, and all was so disposed that a body within, 
resolutely bent on resistance, might well have set at 
defiance a force like that w^hich now came against it. 

Of all these truths Heinrich was sensible, for he 
had shown courage and gained experience in the 
defence of places, during a life that was now past 
its meridian, and which had been necessarily spent 
amid the tumults and contentions of that troubled 


tge. He looked about him, therefore, with greater 
seriousness, in order to ascertain on whom he might 
rely, and the fine and collected deportment of Bercht- 
hold Hintermayer gave him that sort of satisfaction 
which brave men feel by communion with kindred 
spirits in the moment of "danger. When e^sry ne 
cessary disposition was made, -he party advanced, 
moving deliberately to preserve their order, and 
conscious that breath would be necessary in mount 
ing the steep acclivity. 

Perhaps there is no time in which the ingenuity 
of man is more active, than in those moments when 
he has a sensitive consciousness of being wrong, 
and consequently a feverish desire to vindicate his 
works or acts to himself, as well as to others. A 
deep conviction of truth, and the certainty of being 
right, fortifies the mind with a high moral dignity, 
that even disinclines it to the humility of vindication. 
Thus he who rushes from a dispute in which his 
own convictions cause him to distrust his own argu 
ments, into rash and general asseverations, betrays 
the goadings of conscience rather than spirit, and 
weakens the very cause that it may be his wish to 
establish. An arrogant assumption of knowledge, 
especially in matters that our previous habits and 
education rather disqualify than teach us to compre 
hend, can only lead to contradiction and detection ; 
and although circumstances may lend a momentary 
and fallacious support to error, the triumph of truth 
is as certain as its punishments are severe. Happily, 
this is an age, in which no sophistry can long escape 
unscathed, nor any injury to natural justice go long 
unrequited. No matter where the wrong to truth 
has been committed on the throne, or in the cabinet, 
in the senate, or by means of the press society is 
certain to avenge itself for the deceptions of which 
it has been the dupe, and its final judgments are re 
corded on that opinion which lasts long after the 


specious triumphs of the plausible are forgotten. It 
were well that they who abuse their situations, by a 
reckless disregard of consequences, in order to ob 
tain a momentary object, oftener remembered this 
fact, for they would spare themselves the mortifica 
tion, and in some cases the infamy, that is so sure 
to rest on him who disregards right to attain an 

Heinrich Frey greatly distrusted the lawfulness 
of the enterprise in which he was engaged ; for, 
unlike his companions, he had the responsibility of 
advising, as well as that of execution, on his head. 
He had, therefore, a restless wish to find reasons of 
justification for what he did ; and as he marched 
slowly across the meadows, with Berchthold and 
the smith at his side, his tongue gave utterance to 
his thoughts. 

" There cannot be any manner of doubt of the 
necessity and justice of what we do to Limburg, 
Master Hintermayer," he said; for men usually 
affirm in all dubious cases with a confidence pre 
cisely in an inverse ratio to the distrust they feel of 
the rectitude of their cause : " else why are w r e 
iiere ? Is Limburg for ever to trouble the valley and 
he plain, with its accursed exactions and avarice, 
or are we slaves for shaven monks to trample en?" 

" There are sufficient reasons, of a truth, for wnat 
we do, Herr Burgomaster," answered Berchthold, 
whose mind had taken a strong bias to the new 
change in religious opinions, that were then fast 
gaining ground. " When we have so good motives, 
let us look no farther." 

"Nay, young man, I am certain that the honest 
smith here will say, no nail that he drives into 
hoof can be too well clenched." 

" That fact is out of all question, Master Bercht 
hold," answered Dietrich, " and therefore must his 
worship be right in the whole argument." 


" Let it be so ; I shall never gainsay the neces 
sity of breaking up a nest of drones." 

" I call them not drones, young Berchthold, nor 
do I come to break them up; but simply to show 
the world, that he who would deal with the affairs 
of Deurckheim, hath need of a lesson to teach him 
not to enter his neighbor s grounds." 

"This is wholesome, and will bring great credit 
on our town !" responded the smith. " The more 
the pity that we do not press the same matter home 
upon the Elector too, who hath of late raised new 
pretensions to our earnings." 

" With the Elector the affair may not be discussed, 
for his interference is of too strong a quality to call 
upon our manhood in maintaining the right of non 
interference. These subtle questions of law are not 
to be learned over a furnace, but need nice capaci 
ties to render them clear ; but clear they are, to 
all who have the power to understand them. It is 
more than probable, that to thee, Dietrich, they are 
not so manifest; but wert thou one of the town 
council, thou shouldst look into the question with 
different eyes." 

" That I doubt not, honorable Heinrich, that I 
doubt not. Could but such an honor light on one of 
my name and breeding Himmel! the worshipful 
council should find a man ready to believe any 
nicety of this sort, or indeed of any other sort !" 

" Ha ! There is a light at yonder loop !" exclaim 
ed Berchthold. This bodes well." 

" Hast a friend in the Abbey]" 

" Go to, Herr Burgomaster This touches on 
excommunication ; but I much like yon light at the 
loop !" 

" Let there be silence," whispered Heinrich to 
those in his rear, who passed the order to their fel 
lows. " We draw near." 

The party was now at the foot of the hill. Not a 


sign of their approach being known had yet met 
them; unless a single taper placed at a dungeon- 
loop could thus be interpreted. On the contrary, 
the stillness already described in the approach of 
Ulrike, reigned over the whole of the vast pile. 
But, neither Heinrich nor his companion liked this 
fearful quiet, for it boded a defence the more serious 
when it did come. They would have greatly pre 
ferred an open resistance, and nothing would have 
more relieved the minds of the two leaders, than to 
have been able to command a rush, under a hot dis 
charge from the arquebusiers of Duke Friedrich 
But this relief was refused them, and the whole 
bana reached a point of the hill, under a flanking 
tower, where it became necessary to abandon all 
idea of cover, and to make a swift movement, to 
gain the road. It was the rush of this evolution 
which first disturbed the monks in the chapel. The 
second interruption proceeded from the ruder sounds 
of the assault, that immediately after was made 
upon the outer gate, itself. 


" I ll never 

Be such a ghostling to obey instinct, but stand 
As if a man were author of himself, 
And knew no other line." 


THE assailants, as has been seen, were led by the 
Burgomaster, and his two lieutenants, Berchthold and 
the smith. Close at the heels of the latter followed 
three of his own journeymen, each, like his master, 
armed with a massive sledge. No sooner did the 
party reach the gate, than these artisans commenced 
the duty of pioneers, with great readiness and skill. 
At the third blow, from Dietrich s brawny arm, the 


gate flew open, and those in front rushed into tho 

" Who art thou?" cried Berchthold, seizing a man 
who knelt with a knee on another s breast, immedi 
ately across his passage ; " Speak, for this is not a 
moment of trifling !" 

" Master Forester, be less hot, and remember 
thy friends. Dost not see it is Gottlob, that holdeth 
the convent porter, lest the knave should use the 
additional bars. There are strangers within, and. 
to consult his ease, the faithless varlet hath not done 
his fastenings properly, else mightest thou have pound 
ed till Duke Friedrich s men were upon thee." 

" Bravely done, foster brother ! Thy signal was 
seen and counted on ; but, since thou knowest the 
ways so well, lead on, at once, against the men-at- 

" Himmel ! The rogues have bristly beards, well 
grizzled with war, and may not like to have their 
sleep thus suddenly broken ; but service must be 
done Choose the most godly of thy followers, wor 
shipful Burgomaster, to go against the monks, who 
are fortified in their choir, and well armed with 
prayer ; while I will lead the more carnal to another 
sort of work against the Elector s people." 

While this short dialogue had place, the whole of 
the assailants poured through the gate, their officers 
endeavoring to maintain something like order, among 
the ill-trained band. All felt the imperious necessity 
of first disposing of the troops ; for as respects the 
monks themselves, there was certainly no cause of 
immediate apprehension. A few were left, therefore, 
to guard the gate, while Heinrich, guided by the 
cow-herd, led his followers toward the buildings, 
where the men-at-arms were known to lodge. 

If we were to say that the party advanced to this 
attack without concern, we should overrate their 
valor, and do the reputation of the Elector s men 


injustice. There was sacrilege in the invasion of 
the convent, according to the predominant opinions 
of the age ; for though Protestantism had made great 
progress, even reformers had grievous doubts in 
severing the bonds of habit and long-established 
prejudices. To this lurking sentiment was added 
the unaccountable silence that still reigned among 
the men-at-arms, who, as Gottlob had said, were 
known to be excellent soldiers at need. They lay in 
the rear of the Abbot s dwelling, and were sufficient 
ly intrenched behind walls, and among the gardens, 
to make a fierce resistance. 

But all these considerations rather flashed upon 
the minds of the leaders, than they were maturely 
weighed. In the moment of assault there is little 
leisure for thought, especially when the affair gets 
to be as far advanced as this we are now describing: 
The men rushed towards the point of attack, accord 
ingly, beset by misgivings rather than entertaining 
any very clear ideas of the dangers they ran. 

Gottlob had evidently made the best of the time 
he had been at liberty in the Abbey, to render him 
self master of the intricate windings of the differ 
ent passages. He was soon at the door of the Ab 
bots abode, which was dashed into splinters by a 
single blow of Dietrich s sledge, when there poured 
a stream of reckless, and we may add lawless, 
soldiery through the empty apartments. In another 
moment, the whole of the assailants were in the 
grounds, in the rear of this portion of the dwellings. 

As there is nothing that more powerfully rebukes 
violence than a calm firmness, so is there nothing so 
appalling to or so likely to repulse an assault, as a 
coolness that seems to set the onset at defiance. 
In such moments, the imagination is apt to become 
more formidable than the missiles of an enemy; 
conjuring dangers in the place of those, which, in 
the ordinary course of warfare, might be lighty 


estimated were they seen. Every one knows, that 
the moment which precedes the shock of battle, is 
by far the most trying to the constancy of man, 
and a reservation of the means of resistance is pro 
longing that moment, and of course increasing its 

Every man among the hostile band, even to the 
leaders, felt the influence of this mysterious quiet 
among the troops of the Elector. So imposing in 
fact did it become, that they halted in a group, a 
position of all others most likely to expose them to 
defeat, and there was a low rumor of mines and 

Berchthold perceived that the moment was criti 
cal, and that there was imminent danger of defeat. 

" Follow !" he cried, waving his sword, and spring 
ing towards the silent buildings in which it was known 
the men-at-arms were quartered. He was valiantly 
seconded by the Burgomaster and the smith, when 
the whole party resumed its courage, and advanced 
tumultuously against the doors and windows. The 
sounds of the sledges, and the yielding of bars and 
bolts, came next ; after which the rush penetrated to 
the interior. The cries of the assailants rang among 
empty vaults. There was the straw, the remnants 
of food, the odor of past debauches, and all the 
usual disgusting signs of ill-regulated barracks ; for 
in that day, neatness and method did not descend 
far below the condition of the affluent ; but no cry 
answered cry, no sword or arquebuse was raised 
to meet the blow of the invader. Stupor was the 
first feeling, on gaining the knowledge of this im 
portant fact. Then Heinrich and Berchthold both 
issued orders to bring the captured porter, who was 
in the centre of the assailants, before them. 

" Explain this," said the Burgomaster, authorita 
tively; "what hath become of Duke Friedrich s 


" They departed at the turn of the night, wor 
shipful Herr, leaving Limburg to the care of its 
patron saint." 

" Gone ! whither, and in what manner ? If thou 
deceivest me, knave, thy saint Benedict himself 
shall not save thee from a flaying !" 

" I pray you be not angered, great magistrate, 
for I say nothing but truth. There came an order 
from the Elector, as the sun set, recalling his mean 
est warrior : for, it is said, he is sore pressed, and 
nath great need of succor." 

The silence which followed this explanation, was 
succeeded by a shout, and individuals began to 
steal eagerly away from the main body, bent on 
their own designs of pillage. 

" What road took the Duke s men ? 

" Worshipful Heinrich, they went down by the 
horse-path, in great secrecy and order, and passea 
up the opposite mountain, in order to escape trou 
bling the townsmen to open the gates at that late 
hour. It was their intention to cross the cedars of 
the Heidenmauer, and, descending on the other 
side of the camp, to gain the plain in the rear of 

There no longer remained a doubt that the con 
quest was achieved, and the entire party broke off 
in bands ; some to execute their private orders, and 
others, like those who had already proved delin 
quent, to look after their own particular interests. 

Until this moment not a solitary straggler had 
gone near the chapel. As it was not the wish of 
those who had planned the assault, to do personal 
injury to any of the fraternity, the orders had been 
so worded, as to leave this portion of the Abbey for 
a time unvisited, in the expectation that the monks 
would profit by the omission, to escape by some of 
the many private posterns that communicated with 
the cloisters. But, as there no longer was an armed 


enemy to subdue, it now became necessary to think of 
the fraternity. The process of sacking their dormi 
tories was already far advanced, and the bursts of 
exultation, that began to issue from the buildings., 
announced that the rich and commodious dwelling 
of the Abbot himself was undergoing a similar 
summary process. 

" Himmel !" muttered Gottlob, who from the mo 
ment of his liberation had not quitted the side of his 
foster brother, "our castle rogues are taking deep 
looks into the books of the most reverend Bonifa- 
cius, Master Berchthold ! It were good to tell them 
which are Latin, at least, lest they burthen their 
shoulders with learning they can never use." 

"Let the knaves plunder," replied Heinrich, gruffly; 
"as much evil as good hath come from that store of 
letters, and it will be all the better for Deurckheim 
were the damnable ammunition of the Benedictines 
a little less plenty. There are those on the plains 
who doubt that necromancy is bound up in some 
of the volumes that bear a saint s name on their 

Perhaps Berchthold might have remonstrated, 
had not his instinct told him, that remonstrance on 
such a subject, in that moment of riot and confusion, 
would have been worse than useless. The conse 
quence was, that valuable works and numerous 
manuscripts, which had been collected during cen 
turies of learned ease, were abandoned to the humor 
of men incapable of estimating their value, or even 
of understanding their objects. 

" Let us to the monks," said Heinrich, sheathing 
his heavy blade, for the first time since they had 
quitted the wood. " Friend smith, thou wilt look to 
the duties here, and see that what is done is done 
thoroughly. Remember that thy metal is well heat 
ed, and on the anvil, waiting thy pleasure ; it must 
be beaten flat, lest at another day it be remoulded 
2 B 2 


into a weapon to do us harm. Go to, Dietrich; thoti 
knowest what we of the town would have, and what 
we expect of thy skill." 

Taking Berchthold by the arm, the Burgomaster 
led the way towards that far-famed pile, the Abbey- 
church. They were followed by a body of some 
twenty chosen artisans, who, throughout the whole 
of that eventful night, kept close to the two leaders, 
like men who had been selected for this particular 

The same ominous silence reigned around the 
chapel as had rendered the approach to the quarters 
of the men-at-arms imposing. But here the invaders 
went against a different enemy. With most then 
living, the mysterious power of the Church still 
possessed a deep and fearful interest. Dissenters 
had spoken boldly, and the current of public opinion 
had begun to set strongly against the Romish Church, 
in all that region, it is true ; but it is not easy to 
eradicate by the mere efforts of reason, the deef 
roots that are thrown out by habit and sentiment 
At this very hour, we see nearly the entire civilized 
world committing gross and evident wrongs, and 
justifying its acts, if we look closely into its philoso 
phy, on a plea little better than that of a sickly taste 
formed by practices which in themselves cannot be 
plausibly vindicated. The very vicious effects of 
every system are quoted as arguments in favor of 
its continuance; for change is thought to be, and 
sometimes is, a greater evil than the existing wrong; 
and men, in millions, are doomed to continue de 
graded, ignorant, and brutal, simply because vicious 
opinions refuse all sympathy with those whose hope 
less lot it has been to have fallen, by the adventitious 
chances of life, beneath the ban of society. In this 
manner does error beget error, until even philosophy 
and justice are satisfied with making abortive at 
tempts to palliate a disease that a bolder and better 


practice might radically cure. It will not occasion 
surprise, therefore, when we say, that both Hein- 
rich and Berchthold had heavy misgivings concern 
ing the merit of their enterprise, as they drew near 
the church. Perhaps no man ever much preceded 
his age, without at moments distrusting his own 
principles; and it is certain, that Luther himself 
was often obliged to wrestle with harassing doubts. 
Berchthold was less troubled, however, than his 
companion, for he acted under the orders of a 
superior, and was both younger and better taught 
than the Burgomaster. The first of these facts was 
sufficient of itself, under his habits, to remove a 
load of responsibility from his shoulders, while the 
alter not only weakened the influence of previous 
opinions, but caused those which he had adopted to 
be well fortified. In short, there existed between 
Heinrich and Berchthold that sort of difference 
which all must have remarked in the advancing age 
in which we live, between him who has inherited 
his ideas from generations that have passed, and 
him who obtains them from his contemporaries. 
The young Forester had grown into manhood since 
the voice of the Reformer was first heard in Germany, 
and as it happened to be his lot to dwell among those 
who listened to the new opinions, he had imbibed 
most of their motives of dissent, without ever hav 
ing been much subject to the counteracting influence 
of an opposite persuasion. It is in this gradual man 
ner, that nearly all salutary moral changes are 
effected, since they who first entertain them, are 
rarely able to do more, in their generation, than to 
check the progress of habit; while the duty of 
causing the current to flow backward, and to take 
a new direction, devolves on their successors. 

In believing that Wilhelm of Venloo would be 
foremost in deserting his post, in this moment of 
outrage and tumult, the authors of the assault did 


him injustice. Though little likely to incur the haz 
ards, or to covet the honors of martyrdom, the 
masculine mind of the Abbot elevated him altogethei 
above the influence of any very abject passion; and 
if he had not self-command to curtail the appetites, 
he had a dignity of intellect which rarely deserts 
the mentally-gifted in situations of difficulty. When 
Heinrich and Berchthold, therefore, entered the 
church, they found the entire community in the choir 
remaining, like Roman senators, to receive the blow 
in their collective and official character. There 
might have been artifice, as well as magnanimity, 
in the resolution which had decided Bonifacius to 
adopt this course ; for, coming as they did from the 
scene of brutal violence without, those who entered 
the church were much impressed by the quiet so- 
. lemnity which met them. 

The candles still burned before the altar, the lamps 
threw their flickering light on the quaint architecture 
and the gorgeous ornaments of the chapel, while 
every pale face and shaven head beneath, looked 
like some consecrated watchman, placed near the 
shrine to protect it from pollution. Each monk was 
in his stall, with the exception of the Prior and Fa 
ther Johan, who had stationed themselves on the 
steps of -the altar; the first as the officiating priest 
of the late mass, and the latter under an impulse of 
his governing and natural exaggeration, which 
moved him to throw his person as a shield before the 
vessel that contained the host. The Abbot was on 
his throne, motionless, indisposed to yield, and 
haughty, though with features that betrayed great 
and condensed passion. 

The Burgomaster and BerehthoM advanced into 
the choir alone, for their followers remained in the 
body of the church, in obedience to a sign from the 
former. Both were uncovered, and while they 
walked slowly up the choir, scarce a head moved. 


Eveiy eye seemed riveted, by a common spell, on 
the crucifix of precious stones and ivory that stood 
upon the altar. The blood of Heinrich creeped un 
der the influence of this solemn calm, and by the 
time he had reached the steps, where he stood con 
fronted equally to the Abbot and the Prior, for the 
former of whom he had quite as much fear as hatred, 
and for the latter an unfeigned love and reverence, 
the resolution of the honest Burgomaster was sen 
sibly weakened. 

" Who art thou ?" demanded Bonifacius, admira 
bly timing his question, by the indecision and the 
quailing eye of him he addressed. 

" By Saint Benedict! my face is no such stranger 
in Limburg that you put this question, most holy 
Abbot," answered Heinrich, making an effort to 
imitate the other s composure, that was very sensible 
to himself, but better concealed from others; "though 
not shaven and blessed, like a monk, I am one well 
known to most that dwell in or near Deurckheim !" 

"I had better said, What art thou? Thy name 
and office are known to me, Heinrich Frey; but in 
what character dost thou now presume to enter 
Limburg church, and to show this want of reverence 
to our altars 1" 

" To speak thee fairly, reverend Bonifacius, tis in 
the character of the head-man of Deurckheim, a 
much-injured and long-abused town, that is tired of 
monkish exactions and monkish pride, and which 
hath at length assumed the office of doing itself jus 
tice^, that I appear. We are here to night, not as 
peaceful citizens bent on prayers and hymn-singing, 
but armed, as thou seest, and bold in the intention 
to do away a nuisance from the neighborhood for 

" Thy words are as little friendly as thy guise, 
and what thou sayest here, but too well answers to 
Jiat which thy rude followers perform beyond the 


walls of this consecrated spot. Hast thou wel* 
pondered on this bold step of thy town, Herr Hem- 
rich ?" 

" If often pondering be well pondering, it hath 
been before us, Bonifacius, at different meetings, 
and in various discussions, any time this year past." 

" And hast thou no dread of Rome ?" 

" That is an authority which lessens daily in this 
region, holy Benedictine. Not to deal doubly by 
thee, of the two we have most distrusted the anger 
of Duke Friedrich ; but that fear is diminished by 
the certainty that he hath so much on his hands just 
now, that his thoughts cannot easily turn to other 
affairs. We did not know, in sooth, that he had 
recalled his men-at-efrms, but had counted on some 
angry discussion with those obstinate warriors; and 
thou wilt easily comprehend that their absence hath, 
in no manner, lessened our faith in our own cause." 

" The Elector may regain his power, when a day 
of reckoning will come for those who have dared 
to profit by his present distress." 

" We are traders and artisans, good Bonifacius, 
and have made our estimates with some nicety. If 
the Abbey must be paid for an event by no means 
certain we shall count the bargain profitable so 
long as it cannot be rebuilt. Brother Luther, we 
think, is laying a corner-stone that will prevent the 
devil from ever attempting to set up that which we 
now propose to throw down." 

"This is thy final answer, Burgomaster?" 

" Nay, I say not that, Abbot. Send in thy terms 
to the town-council to-morrow, and, if we can en 
tertain them, it may happen that a present accom 
modation shall stop all further claims. But what 
has here been so happily commenced, must be as 
happily finished." 

" Then before I quit these holy walls, hearken to 
my malediction," returned Bonifacius, rising with 


priestly and practised dignity: "on thee and on 
thy town on all that call thee magistrate pa 
rent " 

" Stay the dreadful words !" cried a piercing fe- 
Tfiale voice from among the columns behind the choir. 
"Reverend and holy Abbot, have mercy!" added 
Ulrike, pale, trembling, and shaken equally with 
horror and alarm, though her eye was bright and 
wild, like that of one sustained by more than human 
purpose: "Holy Priest, forbear! He knows not what 
he does. Madness hath seized on him and on the 
town. They are but tools in the hands of one more 
powerful than they." 

At the appearance of Ulrike, Bonifacius resumed 
his seat, disposed to await the effect of her appeal. 

" Thou here !" said Heinrich, regarding his wife 
with surprise, but entirely without anger or suspi 

" Happily here, to avert this fearful crime from 
thee and thy household." 

" I had thought thee at thy prayers with the poor 
Herr von Ritterstein, in his comfortless hermitage 
of the Heidenmauer!" 

" And canst thou think of the deed which hath 
driven the Herr Odo to this penitence and suffering, 
and stand here armed and desperate! Thou seest 
that years do not suffice to relieve a soul on which 
the weight of sacrilege rests; oh! hadst thou been 
with me, to witness the agony that preyed upon 
poor Odo, as he knelt at yonder step, listening to 
the mass that hath this night been said in his behalf, 
thou mightest better know how deep is the wound 
made on the heart that hath been seared by God s 

" This is most strange!" rejoined the wondering 
Burgomaster ; " that those whom I had hoped well 
disposed of, and that in a manner neither to suspect 
nor to trouble our enterprise, should cross us at the 


moment when all is so near completion! Sapper- 
ment! young Berchthold, thou seest in what manner 
matrimony clogs the stoutest of us, though girded 
with the sword." 

" And thou, Berchthold Hintermayer, son of my 
dearest friend child of my fondest hope, thou 
comest, too, on this unhoJy errand, like the midnight 
robber, stealing upon the unarmed and consecra 
ted !" 

"None love, or none reverence thee, more than 
1, Madame Ulrike," answered the youth, bowing 
with sincere respect; "but wert thou to address 
thy speech to the Herr Heinrich, it would go at 
once to him who directs our movements/ 

"Then on thee, Burgomaster, will be thrown the 
heaviest load of Heaven s displeasure, as on the 
] eader of the outrage. What matters it that the 
Benedictines are grasping, or overweening in their 
respect for themselves, or that some among them 
have forgotten their vows ? Is not this temple devo 
ted to God? Are not these his altars, before which 
thou hast dared to come, with a hostile heart and an 
angry purpose ?" 

" Go to, good Ulrike," returned Heinrich, saluting 
the cold but ever handsome cheek of his wife, who 
leaned her head on his shoulder to recall her facul 
ties, while she firmly held his hand with both her 
own, as if to stay his acts; "Go to, thou art excel 
lent in thy way, but what can thy sex know of poli 
cy? This matter hath been had up before many 
councils; and by my beard! tongue of woman 
cannot shake the resolutions of Deurckheim. Go, 
depart with thy nurse, and leave us to do our plea 

" Is it thy pleasure, Heinrich, to brave Heaven ? 
Dost thou not know, that the crimes of the parent 
are visited on the child that the wrong done to-day 
however we may triumph in present success, is sure 


.o revisit us in the dread shape of punishment? Were 
there no other power than conscience, so long as 
that fearful scourge remains on earth, tis vain to 
expect immunity. Dost thou owe all to thy Deurck- 
heim council and its selfish policy? Hast thou for 
gotten the hour that my pious parents gave thee my 
hand, and the manner in which thou then plighted 
thy faith to protect me and mine, to assume the place 
of these departed friends, to be father, and mother, 
and husband, to her thou took to thy bosom? Is 
Meta that child of our mutual esteem naught, that 
thou triflest with her peace and hopes? Lay aside, 
then, these hasty intentions, and turn thy mind to 
thine own abode; bethink thee of those whom nature 
and the law condemn to suffer for thy faults, or to 
whom both have given the dearer right to rejoice 
in thy clemency and mercy." 

" Was ever woman so bent on crossing the noble 
duties of man !" said the Burgomaster, who, spite 
of himself, had been sensibly moved by this hasty 
and comprehensive picture of his domestic duties, 
and who was greatly troubled to find the means of 
extricating himself from the position in which he 
stood. " Thou art better in thy chamber, good 
Ulrike. Meta will hear of this onset, and have her 
fears. Go then, and calm the child ; thou shalt have 
such escort as becometh my quality and thy de 

" Berchthold, I make the last appeal to thee. This 
cruel father, this negligent husband, is too madly bent 
on his council, and on the wild policy of the town, to 
remember God ! But thou hast young hopes, and sen 
timents that become thy years and virtue. Dost think, 
rash boy, that one like Meta will dare trust the last 
chance of happiness to a participator in this crime, 
when such an inheritance of guilt will be the portion 
that shall descend from her own father?" 

A stir among the monks, who had hitherto listened 


with an attention that vacillated between hope and 
fear, interrupted the answers of the wavering Bur 
gomaster and his young companion. The move 
ment was caused by the entrance of the group, 
which, until now, had stood aloof in the obscurity 
of the great aisle, but which seized the moment of 
doubt, to advance into the centre of the choir. One, 
closely muffled, walked from out its centre, and 
throwing aside the cloak that had concealed his 
form, showed the armed person of Emich of Lein- 
ingen. The moment Ulrike recognized the unbend 
ing eye of the Baron, she buried her face in her 
hands, and quitted the place. She went not unat 
tended, however, for both her husband and Bercht- 
hold followed anxiously; nor did either return to 
the work of the night, until he had seen the heart- 
stricken wife and mother under the protection of a 
well-chosen company of the townsmen. 


" He, who the sword of heaven will bear, 
Should be as holy as severe " 

Measure for Measure. 

THE first glances between Emich and Bonifacius 
were filled with those passions which each had so 
-ong dissembled, and of which the reader has al 
ready had glimpses during the more unguarded mo 
ments of the recent debauch. In the eyes of the 
Count, triumph mingled with hatred ; while there 
still remained a slight covering of artifice and cau 
tion about the lineaments of the Abbot, masks that 
he scarcely thought it yet expedient to throw en 
tirely aside. 

" We owe this visit, then, to thee, Herr Emich ?" 
said the latter, struggling to appear calm. 


" And to thine own desert, most holy Bonifacius." 

" What wouldst thou, audacious Baron?" 

" Peace in this oft-violated valley humility in 
shaven crowns religion without hypocrisy and 
mine own." 

" I will not talk to thee of Heaven, bold man, for 
the word were blasphemy in such a presence; but 
thou art not yet so lost to worldly policy as to over 
look the punishment of the Empire. Hast thou well 
counted thy gold, and art thou sure thy coffers are 
sufficiently stored to rebuild the sainted pile which 
thy hand would fain destroy or dost think thy riches 
can replace all that pious princes have here bestow 
ed, during ages in which the Church hath been duly 

" As to thy vessels and precious stones, reverend 
Abbot, it shall be my heed to preserve them to meet 
this demand, which haply may never be made; and 
as to the cost of rebuilding the Abbey, why the 
same notable workman that helped first to set it up, 
will owe me a good turn for punishing those that 
outwitted him, and sent him away without the prom 
ised boon of souls. Though, God s truth ! were the 
fact fairly dived into, I am of opinion that Limburg, 
after all, hath sent more customers to his furnaces, 
than all the drinking-inns and pot-houses of the Pa 

This sally of their Lord produced a general and 
deriding laugh among his followers, who now began 
to flock into the church from other parts of the 
Abbey, with the expectation that there was rich 
plunder to be had in the sanctuary. It was about 
this time, too, that a brand was cast among the 
straw of the barracks, and the strong light which 
glared through the stained windows very effectually 
told the monks of the inefficiency of further remon 

Notwithstanding his known licentiousness, and the 


general freedom of his life, the Abbot had imbibed, 
from the high objects of his calling, by that secret 
process that renders even the least deserving in 
some measure subject to the influence of their pro 
fessions, a cast of dignity, and perhaps we might 
add even of sincerity (for there is often a strange 
admixture of inherent faith and practical unbelief 
about the dissolute) that caused him frequently to 
rise to the level of his most solemn duties. A char 
acter strong and masculine as his, could not be 
aroused without displaying some of its latent ener 
gies, be it for good or be it for evil ; and Emich had 
doubts of the result, when he witnessed the manner 
in which his enemy succeeded in repressing his 
fierce resentment, and the expression of clerical 
dignity and official calmness that reigned in his 
countenance. The Abbot arose, like a prelate in 
the undisturbed exercise of his functions, and rais 
ing his voice, so as to send his words to the deepest 
recesses of the chapel, he spoke after the manner 
of the peculiar rites of the Church he served. 

" God, in his hidden wisdom, hath permitted to 
the wicked a momentary triumph," he said; "we 
search not now into the reasons of this mysterious 
dispensation ; the truth will be known in his own 
time : but, as servitors of the altar as guardians 
of this holy sanctuary as the sworn and professed 
of Heaven as one consecrated and blessed there 
remaineth a solemn, an imperative duty to perform." 

" Bonifacius, beware !" interrupted the Count of 
Leiningen ; " thou dealest not now with burgomasters 
and weeping wives." 

" In the behalf, then, of that God to whom this 
shrine hath been raised," continued the unmoved 
Abbot, "in his holy interest, and in his holy name" 

" At thy peril, priest !" and Emich shook, partly 
in anger, and partly in a terror he could scarce ex 


"As his unworthy but necessary minister as 
Consecrated and blessed gifted with the power by 
the head of the Church, and now required to use it, 
do I pronounce thee" 

" Where are ye, followers of Hartenburg 1 Down 
with the silly maledictions of this mad monk ; re 
member ye are not trembling women, to need a 
Benedictine s blessing !" 

The voice of Emich was drowned, as well as 
that of the Abbot, by the noises that were now 
raised in the chapel. The first interruption came 
from a long dark instrument, that was thrust from 
out of the aisle behind the throne of Bonifacius, and 
within a few feet of his head ; an interruption that 
filled the whole edifice with the wild, plaintive 
strains of the mountains. 

This signal, which came from the cherry-wood 
trumpet of Gottlob, who rarely went abroad without 
this badge of his profession, was immediately fol 
lowed by a general shout from the band of the 
Count, and by a variety of similar sounds, that were 
raised by different instruments that had hitherto been 
mute. The effect of these shrill strains, echoing 
among the vaulted and fretted roofs, which were 
brightly illuminated by the growing and fierce light 
that now pervaded the church, and of the seeming 
calm of the Abbot, who ended his malediction, spite 
of the uproar, is left to the reader s imagination. 
When he had finished the unheard curse, Bonifacius 
looked about him in gloomy observation. 

It was evident to his cool and instructed mind, 
which was far too earthly in its habits, to cling to 
any hopes of a merely spiritual nature, that the out 
rage had already gone so far, as to render it more 
hazardous to his enemy to retreat than to advance. 
Signing to the community, he descended slowly, and 
with dignity, from his throne, and led the way from 
the choir. The ready monks obeyed, the fraternity 


walking from that extraordinary scene, in their cus 
tomary silent order. Emich followed the dark pro 
cession with a troubled eye, for even the conqueror 
regards the calm retreat of his foes with uneasiness, 
and there was an instant of painful distrust of his 
own purpose, as the last flowing robe vanished 
through a private door that led to a secret postern, 
by which the routed Benedictines quitted a mountain, 
where they had so long dwelt, in the calm, and, we 
might add, in the ease, of an affluent and privileged 

The invaders of the Abbey took this open aban 
donment of the place by its ancient possessors, to 
be an unequivocal admission of their triumph. There 
is no moment so likely to produce excesses, as that 
in which the uncertainty of strife is changed to the 
certainty of victory. The feelings seem willing to 
avenge themselves for all their previous doubts, and 
man is ever too ready to ascribe his successes to some 
inherent qualities, which give him an apparent right 
to abuse any advantages that may happen to be 
their consequence. The band of the castle and the 
people of the town, among whom a large propor 
tion had to the last distrusted the presence of the 
community, to which vulgar opinion attributed the 
power of working miracles, no sooner found them 
selves, as they believed, in undisputed possession of 
the mountain, than the reaction of feeling, to which 
there has just been allusion, urged them to increase 
their violence, and to redouble those efforts which 
had momentarily been checked. 

A shout of triumph was the common signal for 
renewing the assault. It was followed by the crash 
ing of windows, and the overthrow of every fixture 
in the body of the church, that was not too solid to 
resist their first and ill-directed efforts, and a gene 
ral mutilation of the monuments and labored statuary. 
Marble cherubs fell on every side, wings and limbg 


of angels separated from the trunks, and the grave 
and bearded visages of many an honored saint were 
doomed to endure contumely and fractures. Even 
the inferior altars were no longer respected, but they 
and their decorations were ruthlessly scattered, as 
if the enmity of the conquerors was tranferred from 
those who had administered at them, to the dreaded 
Being in whose name the rites had been celebrated. 

The reader will imagine the confusion and tumult 
that attended a scene like this. During the uproar, 
Emich buried his face in his mantle, and paced to 
and fro in the choir, which his presence, and per 
haps some lingering reverence for the sacred spot, 
still preserved from violence. He was joined only 
by the Burgomaster and Berchthold, the remainder 
of the party having mingled with those who were 
destroying the chapels and decorations of the church. 
Heinrich seated himself in one of the vacant stalls, 
for the recent scene and the subsequent parting with 
his wife had shaken his resolution ; while the young 
Forester advanced respectfully to the side of his 

"Is the Herr Count troubled?" demanded the 
latter, after a moment of deferential silence. 

Emich dropped the cloak, and leaning a hand 
familiarly on the shoulder of his young servitor, he 
stood regarding the gorgeous riches and the elabo 
rate beauty of the high altar, all of which was ren 
dered doubly imposing by the powerful light that 
now illuminated the whole interior of the edifice, 
which was never more beautiful than as then seen, 
with its strong relief and deep shadows. 

" Berchthold, there is a God!" he said with em 

" None but the fool doubts it, Herr Emich." 

" And he hath his ministers on earth those whom 
ne hath commissioned to do him pleasure, and to 
burn his incense." 


"We have high authority for this belief, my good 

" We have the authority is high, that hath so 
much antiquity which so suits our secret desires 
which descends to us from our fathers." 

"And which is so supported by proofs, sacred 
and profane." 

" Thou hast been well schooled, good Berchthold," 
said the Count, looking earnestly at his companion, 

" Heaven left me a pious and tender mother, 
when it took my father away." 

Emich continued to lean on the shoulder of Bercht 
hold, while his eye, in which sternness of purpose 
was singularly blended with the waverings of doubt, 
never turned from its contemplation of the altar. 
Above the chased and gilded cabinet which contain 
ed the host, was a small picture of the Mother of 
Christ, delineated in those mild and attractive colors 
with which the pencil is accustomed to portray the 
Virgin Wife of Joseph. Her eye seemed to meet 
the gaze of Emich in sorrow. It was easy to fancy 
the gentle expression was in reproach of the sacri 

" These Benedictines are at length unhoused" 
he continued, trying fruitlessly to avert his look 
from that mild but expressive image ; " they have 
too long ridden roughly on their betters." 

Berchthold bow< 

" Dost thou see aught strange, youth, in that image 
of Maria?" 

" Tis a skilful design, Herr Count, and a fair face 
to regard." 

" Methinks it looks upon this violence with an evil 

" Tis but the work of an ingenious man, my 
Lord, and cannot look other than it hath always 


" Dost think thus, Berchthold ? There are many 
who pretend that images and paintings have been 
known to speak, when it was Heaven s pleasure." 

" They relate such legends, my good Lord, but 
these are events that are little wont to touch those 
who are not much disposed to see them." 

" And yet in these facts had my fathers faith, and 
in this belief was I trained !" 

Berchthold was mute, his own education having 
been more suited to the growing opinions of the 

" That God can surpass the ordinary workings 
of nature, to effect his pleasure," continued Emich, 
"we may at least believe." 

" It may be believed, Herr Count, but is it neces 
sary? He who made nature may use it at his plea 

" Ha ! thou hast no faith in miracles, boy!" 

4 I am myself a miracle, that tells me every mo 
ment of the existence of a superior power; and in 
that much I bend to its control. But it hath never 
been my fortune to hear an image speak, or see it 
do aught else that belongs to the will." 

" By my father s bones ! but thou art fit to deal 
with the cunningest knave that wears a cowl ! How 
now, brave followers !" turning towards his people ; 
" leave no vestige of the roguery and abominations 
that have so long been done within these polluted 
walls !" 

" Herr Count !" said Berchthold eagerly, presum 
ing in his haste to touch the cloak of Emich, " here 
are the Benedictines !" 

The word caused the bold, and at that moment the 
independent Baron to turn suddenly, laying a hand 
on his sword, as he did so. But the hand released 
its grasp, and the features of Emich immediately 
reverted to their former expression of anxiety and 
doubt, at what he now beheld. 


By this time all of the different edifices which 
composed the Abbey of Limburg were fired, the 
church and its imme diate appendages alone except- 
ed. The consequence was such an increase of light 
within the latter, as penetrated the most obscure of 
its Gothic recesses. The choir, above all, received 
the strongest illumination ; and young Berchthold 
thought its tracery never appeared so beautiful as in 
that fearful moment of impending destruction. The 
candles and lamps of the great altar began to look 
dim, and all around prevailed the glorious and fiery 
brightness which accompanies a fierce conflagration. 
During the instant that Emich was turned towards 
his people, two monks had come from the sacristy, 
and placed themselves on the steps of the altar. They 
were the Prior and Father Johan. The former bore 
a small ivory crucifix, which from time to time he 
kissed, while the latter placed at his feet a massive 
and curiously carved chest, of sufficient size and 
weight to have required the aid of a lay-brother to 
bring it from its repository. 

The countenance of the Prior was mild, persua 
sive, and filled with holy concern. That of his 
companion flushed, excited, and bearing the look of 
feverish fire, which is the effect of an enthusiasm 
that springs as much from temperament, as from 

Emich looked at the Benedictines uneasily, and 
he advanced so near, always attended by the Forest 
er, as to be within reach of his arm. 

" Fore God, but ye are tardy, Fathers," he said, 
determined to assume an indifference he was far 
from feeling ; " the pious Bonifacius hath departed 
many minutes, and quickened, as he is, by love of 
his person, I make no question that his footsteps 
have already gone down the mountain side !" 

" Thou hast at length yielded to the whispering 
of the devil, Count of Leiningen !" returned the 


Prior; "thou art resolute that this blot shall rest 
upon thy soul !" 

" We are not at confession, holy Arnolph, but en 
gaged in a knightly redressing of our rights ; if thou 
hast aught here, that is dear to thee, take it, of God s 
name, and go thy way. Thou shalt have safe con 
duct, were it to the gates of Rome ; for, of all thy 
fraternity, thou art he for whom alone I feel regret 
or amity, in this just enterprise." 

" I know not this difference in love, when it touches 
the existence of our shrine, or the duty that ties us 
to its service. This question is not between thee and 
me, Lord Emich, but between thee and God !" 

" Have it as thou wilt, Herr Prior, so thou dost 
but depart in peace." 

" I am not weak enough to resist when resistance 
is vain," mildly answered the Monk ; " nor am I 
quick to desert my post, while there is hope. Thou 
hast not well bethought thee of this act, Emich ; 
thou hast not remembered thy posterity, nor thy kind 
interest in the noble Ermengarde !" 

" Dost fancy me an uxorious citizen, reverend 
Arnolph, that thou wouldest fain stop a knight in his 
onset, by speaking of the good wife and her babes ?" 

As he concluded, Emich laughed. 

" Thou hast not well conceived me. This is not 
a question of death in battle, or of the grief of those 
who survive ; for such thoughts are, unhappily, but 
too common with those who rule the earth, to raise 
disquiet; but I would speak to thee of the long 
future and of its pains. Dost thou know, irreverend 
Baron, that the God of Israel who is my God and 
thine the God of Israel hath said, that he will visit 
the sins of the parent upon the descendant, from 
generation to generation? and yet, blinded by this 
specious success, thou seemest to court his anger." 

" This may be so or not ; for ye of the cloisters 
have many subtle ways of reasoning as you wish ; 


but to me it appeareth better that each should suffei 
for his own sins ; and such, I take it, is what the 
community of Limburg doth now undergo." 

"That we have done much evil, and neglected 
much good, is, alas, too true !" 

" By the kings of Koeln ! thou art getting to be 
of our side, holy Arnolph !" 

" For such is the common course," continued the 
unmoved Prior, " but that thou art not our judge 
is equally certain. That each does and will suffer 
for his own acts is beyond denial, but the fearful 
consequences of crime do not stop with him who 
hath committed it. This much is taught us by reason , 
and what is still more sure, it is consecrated by 
words from God s own mouth. Ponder, then, whilsl 
thou may, on the load of sorrow thou art heaping on 
thy descendants: remember that thou standest there, 
subject to goading passions, the miserable being 
thou art, simply that in thy person thou payest the 
price of a parent s sins. What our common father 
did, is still avenged on us his children." 

" How now, Herr Prior, thou pushest my pedi 
gree much beyond its pretensions. Noble and prince 
ly, if thou wilt, but I pass not the dark ages in any 
of my claims. Let them that have greater ambition 
pay for the purchase in the way thou namest ; I am 
content with more modern honors." 

Emich spoke jeeringly, but the attentive Monk 
saw that he was troubled. 

" If thou hast no thought for posterity none foi 
thyself none for thy God, Emich," the latter resum 
ed, " bethink thee of those who have gone before. 
Hast already forgotten thy visit to the tombs of 
thy family?" 

" Thou hast me there, Arnolph ! those sacred 
vaults have been thy convent s shield these many 
months !" 

" And thou art now disposed to forget them ?" 


** If thou wilt ask yon honest men, they will tell 
thee, Prior, they have no order to spare the meanest 
of thy marble cherubs, even though it hover over 
a grave of mine own house." 

" Then do I indeed despair of touching thy heart !" 
answered Father Arnolph, sorrowing as much for 
the crime as for its consequences. " Then indeed 
art thou madly and ruthlessly bent, not only on our 
destruction, but on thine own ; for pity for the child, 
and love of the parent, are equally despised Emich 
of Leiningen, I curse thee not this is a weapon 
too fearful for human hands lightly to wield. I 
bless thee not ; duty to God forbids the holy office." 

" Hold ! reverend Arnolph, let us not part in anger 
I would, in sooth, crave from thy worthy hands 
some touch of consolation if ay if there be 
chapel in this church, for which thou hast more than 
usual reverence, let it be named, and I swear, by 
knight s faith, unless the work be already done, it 
shall stand unscathed amid the ruins, in testimony 
of my love for thee or if thou hast aught here of 
price, whether of monkish or worldly value, point 
it out, that it may be held safe for thy better leisure. 
In return, I ask but the parting words of peace." 

" Tis forbidden to those who war against God," 
returned the grieved Prior, releasing his robe from 
the eager grasp of the Baron. " I can and will pray 
for thee, Emich ; but to bless thee were treachery 
to Heaven !" 

So saying, the pious Arnolph buried his face in 
his dress, to shut out the view of the profanation 
that was working around him, and withdrew slowly 
from the choir. 




A vaunt ! 

Incarnate Lucifer ! tis holy ground : 
A martyr s ashes now lie there, which make it 
A shrine. 


DURING the foregoing scene, the Benedictine 
already known to the reader as Father Johan, had 
awaited its issue with a species of lofty patience on 
the steps of the altar. But in a character so ex 
aggerated, there remained little that was purely 
natural ; even the forbearance of the Monk partook 
of the forced and fervid qualities of his mind. Con 
ventual discipline, deep and involuntary respect for 
the Prior, and that very disdain which he felt for 
all gentle means of recalling a sinner to the fold, 
kept him tolerably tranquil, while Emich and his 
spiritual superior held their parley; but there was a 
gleam of wild delight in his eye, when he found, of 
all that powerful and boasted fraternity, that he 
alone remained to defend the altars. The feeling 
of the moment in such a breast, notwithstanding 
the scene of tumult that rather increased than di 
minished in the church, was that of triumph. He 
exulted in his own constancy, and he anticipated the 
effects which were to follow from his firmness, with 
the self-complacency of a prurient confidence, and 
with the settled conviction of an enthusiast. 

Emich took little heed of his presence, during 
the first moments that succeeded the departure of 
the Prior. There is a majesty, and a quiet energy 
in truth and sound principles, that happily form 
their constant buttresses. Without this wise pro 
vision of Providence, the \vorld would be hopelessly 
abandoned to the machinations of those who con 
sider all means lawful, provided the ends tend to 


their own success. All near the Abbey of Limburg 
had felt the influence of these high qualities in 
Father Arnolph, and it is more than probable that, 
as in the case of the city of Canaan, had the com 
munity contained four of his spiritual peers the 
Abbey would not have fallen 

The Count, in particular, who, like all that first 
break from mental servitude, was so often troubled 
with strong doubts, had long entertained a deep 
respect for this monk ; and it is not improbable, that 
had the pious Arnolph fully understood his own 
power, by an earlier and more vigilant use of his 
means, he might have found a w ? ay to avert the 
blow that had now alighted on Limburg. But the 
meekness and modesty of the Prior were qualities 
as strongly marked as his more active virtues, and 
the policy of Limburg was not of a character to 
rely on either for its security. 

" There is good in that brother," said Emich to 
Berchthold, when his thoughtful eye again rose to 
the face of the young Forester. " Had he been 
mitred, instead of Bonifacius, our rights might have 
still suffered." 

" Few are more beloved than Father Arnolph, 
Herr Count, and none so deserve to be." 

" Thou art of this mind ! How now, Master 
Heinrich ! art in monkish meditation in thy stall, or 
dost dispose of the lesson of the virtuous Ulrike, 
more at thy ease, in a seat where so much substan 
tial carnal aliment hath been digested by godly 
Benedictines ! Come to the front, like a stout soldier 
and give us the savor of thy good wisdom in this 

" Methinks, our work is well-nigh done, Lord Emich, 
answered Heinrich, complying with the request , 
"my faithful townsmen are not idle in the chapels 
and among the tombs, and the sledge of yon smith 
dealeth with an angel an* it were a bar of molten 


iron. Each stroke leaves a mark that no chisel wiF 
repair !" 

"Let the knaves amuse themselves; every blow 
is quickened by the recollection of some hard pen 
ance. Thou seest that they place the confessionals 
in a pile ready for the torch ! This is attacking the 
enemy in his citadel. But Heinrich, is the excellent 
Ulrike wont to come forth with thee in thy frays 
against the church ? God s judgments ! Were Er- 
tnengarde of this humor, we should have no hope of 
salvation in our castle !" 

" You do my wife injustice, Herr Count ; Ulrike 
was here to pray, and not to encourage." 

"Thou mightest have spared the explanation, for 
truly such encouragement never did soldier need ! 
Wert privy to the visit, ha ! wert privy, worthy 
Burgomaster ?" 

" To speak you honestly, Herr Emich, I thought 
the woman otherwise bestowed." 

" By the Magi ! in her bed 1" 

"Nay, at her prayers, but in a different place. 
But. we do her too much honor, noble Emich, to let 
the movements ot a mere housewife occupy our 
high thoughts in this busy moment." 

" Nothing that touches thee is of light concern 
with thy friends, good Burgomaster," answered the 
Baron, who pondered with instinctive uneasiness, 
even in that moment of tumult, on this visit 01" 
Ulrike to the Benedictines, at an hour so unusual. 

" Thou art well wived, Herr Heinrich, and all 
that know thy consort do her honor !" 

The Burgomaster was a man by far too well sat 
isfied w r ith his own superior merits to harbor jeal 
ousy. Self-complacency might have been at the 
bottom of his security, though it were scarce possi 
ble for one even much more addicted by nature to 
that tormenting passion, to have lived so long in 
perfect familiarity with the pure mind of Ulrike, 


without feeling reverence for its principles and virtue. 
The sentiments of the Baron were very different ; 
for though in his heart equally convinced of the 
character of her to whom he alluded, he could not 
altogether exclude the suspicions of a man of loose 
habits, nor the uneasiness of one who had himself 
been discarded. The answer of the husband, how 
ever, served to turn the discourse, by giving the Bur 
gomaster an opportunity of placing himself in the 
most prominent relief. 

"A thousand thanks, illustrious Herr," he said, 
raising his cap; "the woman is not amiss, though 
much troubled with infirmity on the score of altars 
and penances. When we shall have fairly disposed 
of Limburg, another reign will commence among 
our wives and daughters, and we can hope for more 
juiet Sabbaths. As to this grace of your present 
speech, Lord Count, I take it, as it was no doubt 
meant, to be another pledge of our lasting amity 
and close alliance." 

"Thou talkest well," quickly answered Emich, 
losing the passing feeling of distrust in the recollec 
tion of his present purpose; "no words of friend 
ship are lost, on a true and sworn supporter. Well, 
Heinrich, is our affair finally achieved ?" 

" Sapperment ! Herr Count, if not finished, it is 
111 a fair way to be so quickly." 

" Here remaineth a Benedictine ! said Berchthold, 
drawing their attention to the Monk, who still main 
tained his post on the steps of the altar. 

" The bees do not relish quitting their hive, while 
any of the hard earnings are left," said the Count, 
laughing; "what wculdst thou, Father Johan? if 
thy careful mind hath had thought of the precious 
vessels, make thy choice and depart." 

The Benedictine returned the laugh of the noble, 
with a smile of deep but quiet exultation. 

"Assemble thy followers, rude Baron," he said; 
2 D 2 


" call all within thy control to this sanctified spot, 
for there yet remaineth a power to be overcome of 
which thou hast not taken heed; at the moment 
when thou fanciest thyself most secure, art thou 
nearest to disgrace and to destruction." 

As the excited Monk suited his words by a cor 
responding energy of emphasis and tone, Emich 
recoiled a step, like one who distrusted a secret 
mine. The desperate character of Father Johan s 
enthusiasm was well known, and neither of the 
three listeners was without apprehension, that the 
fraternity, aware of the invasion, had plotted some 
deep design of vengeance, which this exaggerated 
brother had been deputed to execute. 

" Ho ! without there !" cried the Count " Let a 
party descend quickly to the crypt, and look to the 
villanies of these pretended saints ; cousin of Vieder- 
bach," revealing in the eagerness of the moment 
the presence of this sworn soldier of the Cross, "see 
thou to our safety, for the Rhodian warfare hath 
made thee familiar with these treacheries." 

The call of the Count, which was uttered like a 
battle cry, stayed the hands of the destroyers 
Some rushed to obey the order, while most of the 
others gathered hastily into the choir. It is certain 
that the presence of fellow-sufferers diminishes the 
force of fear, even though it may in truth increase 
the danger ; for such is the constitution of our minds, 
that they willingly admit the influence of sympathy 
whether it be in pain or pleasure. When Emich 
found himself backed by so many of his band, he 
thought less of the apprehended mine, and he turned 
to question the Monk, with more of the calmness 
that became his condition. 

"Thou wouldst have the followers of Harten- 
burg, Father," he said, ironically, "and thou seest 
how readily they come !" 

" I would that all who have listened to schismatics 


all who refuse honor to the holy Church all who 
deny Rome and all that believe themselves on 
earth freed from the agency of Heaven, now stood 
before me !" answered the Benedictine, examining 
the group of heads that clustered among the stalls, 
with the bright but steady eye of one engrossed 
\vith the consciousness of his force. " Thou art in 
hundreds, Count Leiningen would it were God s 
pleasure that it had been in millions !" 

We are of sufficient strength for our object, 


That remaineth to be seen. Now, listen 
voice from above! I speak to you, unhallowed 
ministers of the will of this ambitious Baron to 
you, misguided and ignorant tools of a scheme 
that hath been plotted of evil, and hath been brought 
forth from the prolific brain of the restless Father 
of Sin. Ye have come at the heels of your lord, 
vainly rejoicing in a visible but impotent power- 
impiously craving the profits of your unholy enter 
prise, and forgetting God !" 

By the mass, priest !" interrupted Emicn ; "thou 
fcast once already given us a sermon to day, and 
time presseth. If thou hast an enemy to present, 
bring him forth ; but we tire of these ehurchly 

"Thou hast had thy moment of wanton wm, 
abandoned Emich, and now cometh the judgment 

seest thou this box of precious relics ! dost thou 

forget that Limburg is rich in these holy remains, 
and that their virtues are yet untried ? Woe to 
him who scoffeth at their character, and despiseth 
their power !" 

" Stay thy hand, Johan !" cried the Count hastily 
when he saw that the Monk was about to expose 
some of those well-known vestiges of mortality to 
which the Church of Rome then, as now, attributed 


miraculous interventions; "this is no moment fby 
fooleries !" 

"Callest thou this sacred office by so profane a 
name ! abide the issue, foul- mouthed asperser of 
our holy authority, and triumph if thou canst !" 

The Count was much disturbed, for his reason 
had far less influence now in supporting him than 
his ambition. The party in the rear y too, began to 
waver, for opinion- was not then sufficiently con 
firmed to render the mass indifferent to such an ex 
posure of clerical power. Whatever may be the 
difference that exists between Christian sects con 
cerning the validity of modern miracles, all will 
allow, that, when trained in the belief of their real 
ity, the mind is less prepared to resist their influence 
than that of any other engine by which it can be 
assailed, since it is placing the impotency of man 
in direct and obvious collision with the power of 
the Deity. Before such an exhibition of force, na 
ture offers no means of resistance; and the myste 
rious and unseen agency by which the wonder is 
produced, enlists in its interest both the imagination 
and that innate dread of omnipotence which all pos 

" Twere well this matter went no farther !" said 
Emich, uneasily whispering his principal agents. 

."Nay, my Lord Count," answered Berchthold, 
calmly, " it may be good to know the right of the 
matter. If we are not of Heaven s side in this af 
fair, let it be shown in our own behalf ; and if the 
Benedictines are no better than pretenders, our con 
sciences will be all the easier." 

" Thou art presuming, boy none know the end 
of this! Herr Heinrich, thou art silent?" 

" What would you have, noble Emich, of a pool 
Burgomaster? I wilt own, I think it were more for 
the advantage of Deurekheim that the matter w.enJ 
no farther." 


"Thou nearest, Benedictine!" said the Count, 
aying the point of his sheathed sword on the richly 
chased and much reverenced box that the Monk had 
already unlocked, " this must stop here !" 

" Take away the weapon, Emich of Leiningen, 
aid father Johan, with dignity. 

The Count obeyed, though he scarce knew why 

" This is a fearful instant for the unbeliever," con 
tinued the Monk; "the moment is near when our 
altars shall be avenged nay, recoil not, bold Baron 
remain to the end, ye dissolute and forsaken fol 
lowers of the wicked, for in vain ye hope to flee 
the judgment." 

There was so much of tranquil enthusiasm in the 
air and faith of Father Johan, that, spite of a general 
wish to be at a distance from the relics, curiosity, 
and the inherent principle of religious awe, held each 
man spell-bound; though every heart beat quicker 
as the Monk proceeded, calmly, and with a reveren 
tial mien, to expose the bones of saints, the remnants 
of mantles, the reputed nails of the true cross, and 
morsels of its wood, with divers other similar me 
morials of holy events, and of sainted martyrs. Not 
a foot had power to retire. When all were laid, in 
solemn silence, on the bright and glowing shrine, 
Father Johan, crossing himself, again turned to the 

" What may be Heaven s purpose in this strait, I 
know not," he said ; " but withered be the hand, and 
for ever accursed the soul, of him who dareth vio 
lence to these holy vestiges of Christian faith !" 

Uttering these ominous words, the Benedictine 
faced the crucifix, and kneeled in silent prayer. The 
minute that followed was one of fearful portent to 
he cause of the invaders. Eye sought eye in doubt, 
and one regarded the fretted vault, another gazed 
intently at the speaking image of Maria, as if each 
expected some miraculous manifestation of divine 


displeasure. The .\ssue would have been doubtful, had 
not the cherry-wood trumpet of the cow-herd again, 
sounded most opportunely in his master s behalf. The 
wily knave blew a well-known and popular imitation 
of the beasts of his herd, among the arches of th 
chapel, striking at the effect of what had just passed 
y the interposition of a familiar and vulgar idea 
The influence of the ludicrous, at moments when 
the passions vacillate, or the reason totters, is too 
w r ell known to need elucidation. It is another of 
those caprices of humanity that baffle theories, prov 
ing how very far we are removed from being the 
exclusively reasoning animal we are fond of think 
ing the species. 

The expedient of the ready-witted Gottlob pro 
duced its full effect. The most ignorant of the castle 
followers, those even whose dull minds had been on 
the verge of an abject deference to superstition, took 
courage at the daring of the cow-herd ; and, as the 
least founded in any belief are commonly the most 
vociferous in its support, this portion of the band 
echoed the interruption from fifty hoarse throats. 
Emich felt like a man reprieved ; for under the dou 
ble influence of his own distrust, and the wavering 
of his followers, the Count for a moment had fan 
cied his long-meditated destruction of the commu 
nity of Limburg in great danger of being frustrated. 

Encouraged by each other s cries, the invaders 
returned to their work laughing at their own alarm. 
The chairs and confessionals had been already 
heaped in the great aisle, and a brand was thrown 
into the pile. Fire was applied to the church wher 
ever there was food for the element, and some of 
the artisans of Deurckheim, better instructed than 
their looser associates, found the means to light the 
conflagration in such parts of the roofs and the other 
superior stories, as would insure the destruction of 
the pile. In the mean time, all the exterior edifices 


had been burning, and the whole hill, to the eye of 
him who dwelt in the valley beneath, presented 
volumes of red flame, or of lurid smoke. 

During the progress of this scene, Emich paced 
the choir, partly exulting in his success, and partly 
doubting of its personal fruits. Over the temporal 
consequences he had well pondered ; but the motion 
less attitude of Father Johan, the presence of the 
long-reverenced relics, and the denunciations of the 
Church, still had their terrors for one whose mind 
had few well-grounded resources to sustain it. From 
this state of uneasiness he was aroused by the noise 
of the sledge, at work in the crypt. Followed by 
Heinrich and Berchthold, the Count hastened to de 
scend to this place, which it will be remembered 
contained the tombs and the chapel of his race. 
Here, as above, all was in bright light, and all was 
in confusion. Most of the princely and noble tombs 
had already undergone mutilation, and no chapel 
had been respected. Before that of Hartenburg, 
however, Albrecht of Viederbach stood, with folded 
arms and a thoughtful eye. The cloak which, du 
ring the commencement of the attack, had served to 
conceal his person, was now neglected, and he 
seemed to forget the prudence of disguise, in deep 

"We have at length got to the monuments of 
our fathers, cousin ;" said the Count, joining him. 

" To their very bones, nob.le Emich !" 

"The worthy knights have long slept in evil com 
pany; there shall be further rest for them in the 
chapel of Hartenburg." 

" I hope it may be found, Herr Graf, that this ad 
venture is lawful !" 

" How ! dost thou doubt, with the work so neai 
accomplished ?" 

" By the mass! a. soldier of Rhodes might better 
be fighting your turbaned infidel, than awakening 


the nobles of his own house from so long a sleep, a* 
so short a summons !" 

" Thou canst retire into my hold, Herr Albrecht 
if thy arm is wearied," said Emich,. coldly; "not a 
malediction can reach thee there." 

" That would be poor requital for a free hospital 
ity, cousin ; the travelling knight is the ally of tha 
last friend, even though there be some wrong to- 
general duties. But we cavaliers of the island well 
know, that a retreat, to be honorable, must be or 
derly, and not out of season. I am with thee, 
Emich, for the hour, and so no more parley. This 
was the image of the good Bishop of our line?" 

"He had some such reverend office, I do believe; 
but speak of him as thou wilt, none can say he was 
a Benedictine." 

" It had been better, cousin, since this church is 
to be sacked, that our predecessors had found other 
consecrated ground for their dust. Well, we sworn 
soldiers pass uneven lives ! It is now some twelve 
months or so, that Mke a loyal and professed Rho- 
dian, I stood to my knees in water, making good a 
trench against your believer in Houris and your 
unbeliever in Christ ; and now, forsooth, I am here 
as a spectator (none call me more with honesty), 
while a Christian altar is overturned, and a brother 
hood of shaven monks are sent adrift upon earth, 
like so many disbanded mercenaries !" 

" By the Three Kings ! my cousin, thou makest 
a fit comparison; for like disbanded mercenaries 
have they gone forth to prey upon society in a 
new shape. Spare the angel of my grandfather, 
good smith," cried Emich, interrupting himself; "if 
there be any virtue in the image, tis for the benefit 
of our house !" 

Dietrich stayed his uplifted arm, and directed the 
intended blow at another object. The marble flew 
in vast fragments at each collision with his sledge. 


and the leaders of the party soon found it necessary 
to retire, to avoid the random efforts of the heated 

There no longer remained a doubt of the fate 
of these long-known and much-celebrated conven 
tual buildings. Tomb fell after tomb, monuments 
were defaced, altars were overturned, chapels sacked, 
and every object that was in the least likely to re 
sist the action of fire, received such indelible injuries 
as rendered its restoration difficult or impossible. 

During the continuance of their efforts, the con 
flagration had advanced, as the fierce element that 
had been called in to assist the destroyers is known 
to do its work. Most of the dormitories, kitchens, 
and outer buildings were consumed, so far as the 
materials allowed, beyond redress; and it became 
apparent that the great church and its dependencies 
would soon be untenable. 

Emich and his companions were still in the crypt, 
when a cry reached them, admonishing all within 
hearing to retreat, lest they become victims to the 
flames. Berchthold and the smith drove before them 
the crowd from the crypt, and there was a general 
rush to gain the outer door. 

When the interior of the church was clear, the 
Count and his followers paused in the court, con 
templating the scene, with curious eyes, like men 
satisfied with their work. No sooner was the com 
mon attention directed back towards the spot from 
whence they had just escaped, than a general cry, 
that partook equally of wonder and horror, broke 
from the crowd. As the doors were all thrown wide, 
nd every cranny of the building was illuminated 
y the fierce light of the flames that were raging in 
he roofs, the choir was nearly as visible to those 
without, as if it stood exposed to the rays of a noon 
day sun. Father Johan was still kneeling before the 



In obedience to the commands of Emich, th<* 
sacred shrine had been stript of its precious vessels, 
but none had presumed to touch a relic. On these 
long-venerated memorials, the Benedictine kept his 
eyes riveted, in the firm conviction that, sooner or 
ater, the power of God would be made manifest in 
defence of his violated temple. 

" The monk ! the monk ! ?> exclaimed fifty eager 

" I would fain save the fanatic !" said Emich, with 
great and generous concern. 

" He may listen to one who beareth this holy em 
blem," cried the Knight of Rhodes, releasing his 
cross from the doublet in which it had been con 
cealed. "Will any corne with me, to the rescue of 
this mad Benedictine?" 

There was as much of repentant atonement in 
the offer of Albrecht of Viederbach, as there was 
of humanity. But the impulse which led young 
Berchthold forward, was purely generous. * Not 
withstanding the imminent peril of the attempt, they 
darted together into the building, and passed swiftly 
up the choir. The heat was getting to be oppressive, 
though the great height of the ceilings still rendered 
it tolerable. They approached the altar, advising 
the monk of his danger by their cries. 

" Do ye come to be witnesses of Heaven s power?" 
demanded Father Johan, smiling with the calm of 
an inveterate enthusiast; "or do ye come, sore- 
stricken penitents that ye have done this deed ?" 

"Away, good father*!" hurriedly answeied Bercht 
hold ; " Heaven is against the community to-night ; 
in another minute, yon fiery roof will fall." 

" Hearest thou the blasphemer, Lord ? Is it thy 
holy will, that"- 

" Listen to a sworn soldier of the cross," inter 
rupted Albrecht, showing his Rhodian emblem 


we are of one faith, and we will now depart to 
gether for another trial." 

" Away ! false servant! and thou, abandoned boy! 
See ve these sainted relics?" 

At a signal from the knight, Berchthold seized the 
monk by one side, while Albrecht did the sam 
thing on the other, and he was yet speaking as they 
bore him down the choir. But they struggled with 
one that a long-encouraged and morbid view of 
life had rendered mad. Before they reached the 
great aisle, the fanatic had liberated himself, and, 
while his captors were recovering breath, he was 
again at the foot of the altar. Instead of kneeling, 
however, Father Johan now seized the most ven 
erated of the relics, which he held on high, audibly 
imploring Heaven to hasten the manifestation of its 

"He is doomed!" said Albrecht of Viederbach, 
retiring from the church. 

As the Knight of Rhodes rushed through the 
great door, a massive brand fell from the ceiling 
upon the pavement, scattering its coals like so many 
twinkling stars. 

"Berchthold! Berchthold !" was shouted from a 

hundred throats. 

" Come forth, rash boy !" cried Emich, with a 
voice in which agony was blended with the roar of 
the conflagration. 

Berchthold seemed spell-bound. He gazed wist 
fully at the monk, and darted back again towards 
the altar. An awful crashing above, which resem 
bled the settling of a mountain of snow about to 
descend in an avalanche, grated on the ear. The 
very men who, so short a time before, had corne 
upon the hill ready and prepared to slay, now uttered 
groans of horror at witnessing the jeopardy of their 
fellow-creatures ; for, whatever we may be in mo 
ments of excitement, there are latent sympathies in 


human nature, which too much use may deaden, 
but which nothing but death can finally extinguish, 

" Come forth, young Berchthold ! come forth, my 
gallant forester !" shouted the voice of the Count 
above the clamor of the crowd, as if rallying his 
followers with a battle-cry. " He will die with the 
wretched monk ! The youth is mad !" 

Berchthold was struggling with the Benedictine, 
though none knew what passed between them. There 
was another crash, and the whole pavement began 
to glow with fallen brands. Then came a breaking 
of rafters, and a scattering of fire that denoted the 
end. The interior of the chapel resembled the burn 
ing shower which usually closes a Roman girandola, 
and the earth shook with the fall of the massive 
structure. There are horrors on which few human 
eyes can bear to dwell. At this moment nearly 
every hand veiled a face, and every head was avert 
ed. But the movement lasted only an instant. When 
the interior was again seen, it appeared a fiery fur 
nace. The altar still stood, however, and Johan 
miraculously kept his post on its steps. Berchthold 
had disappeared. The gesticulations of the Bene 
dictine were wilder than ever, and his countenance 
was that of a man whose reason had hopelessly de* 
parted. He kept his feet only for a moment, bui 
withering fell. After which his body was seen tc 
curl like a green twig that is seared by the flames. 



Masters, you ought to consider with yourse.ves." 

Midsummer Night s Dream. 

THE constant moral sentinel that God hath set on 
watch in every man s breast, but which acts so dif 
ferently in different circumstances, though, perhaps, 
in no condition of humiliation and ignorance does it 
ever entirely desert its trust, is sure to bring repent 
ance with the sense of error. It is vain to say that 
this innate sentiment of truth, which we call con 
science, is the mere result of opinion and habit, since 
it is even more apparent in the guileless and un 
trained child than in the most practised man, and 
nature has so plainly set her mark upon all its work 
ings, as to prove its identity with the fearful being 
that forms the incorporeal part of our existence. 
Like all else that is good, it may be weakened and 
perverted, or be otherwise abused ; but, like every 
thing that comes from the same high source, even 
amid these vicious changes, it will retain traces of 
its divine author. We look upon this unwearied 
monitor as a vestige of that high condition from 
which the race fell ; and we hold it to be beyond 
dispute, that precisely as men feel and admit its in 
fluence do they approach, or recede from, their 
original condition of innocence. 

The destruction of the Abbey was succeeded by 
most of those signs which attend all acts of violence, 
in degrees that are proportioned to previous habits. 
Even they who had been most active in accomplish 
ing this long-meditated blow, began to tremble for 
its consequences ; and few in the Palatinate heard 
of the deed, without holding their breaths like men 
who expected Heaven would summarily avenge the 
sacrilege. But in order that the thread of the nar- 
2 E 2 


rative should not be broken, we will return to our 
incidents in their proper order, advancing the time 
but a few days after the night of the conflagration. 

The reader will have to imagine another view of 
the Jaegerthal. There was the same smiling sun, 
and the same beneficent season ; the forest was as 
green and waving, the meadows were as smooth arid 
dark, the hill-sides as bright beneath the play of 
light and shade, while the murmuring brook was as 
limpid and swift, as when first presented to his eye 
in these pages. Not a hut or cottage was disturbed, 
either in the hamlets or along the travelled paths, 
and the Hold of Hartenburg still frowned in feudal 
power and baronial state, on the well-known pass of 
the mountains, gloomy, massive, and dark. But the 
hill of Limburg presented one of those sad and mel 
ancholy proofs of the effects of violence which are 
still scattered over the face of the old world, like so 
many admonitory beacons of the scenes through 
which its people have reached their present state of 
comparative security; beacons that should be as 
useful in communicating lessons for the future, as 
they are pregnant, with pictures of the past. 

The outer W 7 all remained unharmed, with the 
single exception of the principal gate, which bore 
the indelible marks of the smith s sledges; but above 
this barrier the work of devastation appeared in 
characters not to be mistaken. Every roof, and 
there had been fifty, was fallen ; every wall, some 
of which were already tottering, was blackened ; 
and not a tower pointed towards the sky, that did 
not show marks of the manner in which the flames 
nad wreathed around its slender shaft Here and 
there, a small thread of white smoke curled upwards, 
losing itself in the currents of the air, resembling 
so many of the lessening symptoms of a volcano 
after an explosion. A small crucifix, which popular 
rumor said was wood, but which, in fact, was 


of painted stone, still kept its place on a gable* of 
the ruined church ; and many a peasant addressed 
to it his silent prayers, firm in the belief that God 
had protected this image of his sacrifice, throughout 
the terrors of the memorable night. 

In and about the castle, there appeared the usual 
evidences of a distrustful watch ; such ward as is 
kept by him who feels that he has justly become ob 
noxious to the hand of the constituted powers. The 
gates were closed; the sentinels on the walls and 
bastions were doubled; and, from time to time, signals 
were made that communicated with look-outs, so sta 
tioned on the hills that they could command views 
of the roads which led towards the Rhine, beyond 
the gorge of the valley. 

The scene in Deurckheim was different, though 
it also had some points of resemblance with that in 
the hold. There was the same apprehension of 
danger from without, the same watchfulness on the 
walls arid in the towers, and the same unusual dis 
play of an armed force. But in a town of this 
description, it was not easy to imitate the gloomy 
reserve of baronial state. The citizens groupe*d 
together in the streets, the women gossipped as in 
all sudden and strong cases of excitement, and even 
the children appeared to reflect the uneasiness and 
indecision of their parents ; for as the hand of au 
thority relaxed in their seniors, most wandered idly 
and vaguely among the men, listening to catch such 
loose expressions as might enlighten their growing 
understandings. The shops were opened, as usual, 
but many stopped to discourse at the doors, while 
few entered ; and most of the artisans w r asted theii 
time in speculations on the consequence of the hardy 
step of their superiors. 

In the mean time there was a council held in the 
tow r n-hall. Here were assembled all who laid claim 
to civic authority in Deurckheim, with some who 


appeared under the claim of their services in the 
late assault upon the monks. A few of the anxious 
wives of the burghers, also, were seen collected in 
the more public rooms of the building ; for domestic 
influence was neither covert nor trifling in that uxo 
rious and simple community. We shall resume the 
narrative within the walls of this municipal edifice. 
The Burgomaster and other chief men were much 
moved, by the vague apprehension which was the 
consequence of their hazardous experiment. Some 
were bold in the audacity of success ; some doubled 
merely because the destruction of the brotherhood 
seemed too great a good, to come unmixed with 
evil ; some held their opinions in suspense, waiting 
for events to give a value to their predictions, and 
others shook their heads in a manner that would 
appear to imply a secret knowledge of consequences 
that were not apparent to vulgar faculties. The lat 
ter class was more remarkable for its pretension to 
exclusive merit than for numbers, and would have 
been equally prompt to exaggerate the advantages 
of the recent measure, had the public pulse just then 
been beating on the access. But the public pulse 
was on the decline, and, as we have said, seeing and 
understanding all the advantages that were to be 
hoped from the defeat of Bonifacius, uncertainty 
quickened most imaginations in a manner to conjure 
disagreeable pictures of the future. Even Heinrich 
who wanted for neither moral nor physical reso 
lution, was disturbed at his own victory, though if 
questioned he could scarcely have told the reason 
why. This uneasiness was heightened by the fact, 
that most of his compeers regarded him as the man, 
on whom the weight of the Church s and of the 
Elector s displeasure was most likely to fall, thougfc 
it is more than probable that his situation would have 
been far less prominent, had there been no question 
of any results but such as were agreeable. 


This sort of distinction, so isolated in defeat, and 
so social in prosperity, is a species of revenge thai 
society is very apt to* take of all who pretend to be 
wiser or better than itself, by presuming to point the 
way in cases of doubtful expediency, or in presum 
ing to lead the way in those that require decision 
and nerve. He alone is certain of an unenvied 
reputation who, in preceding the main body in the 
great march of events, leaves no very sensible space 
between him and his fellows; while he alone can 
hope for impunity, who keeps so near his backers 
as to be able to confound himself in the general 
mass, when singularity brings comment and censure. 

Heinrich fully felt the awkwardness of his position, 
and, just then, he would gladly have compounded 
for less of the fame acquired by the bold manner in 
which he had led the attack, in order to be rid of 
some of his anxiety. Still a species of warlike in 
stinct led him to put the best face on the affair, and 
when he addressed his colleagues, it was with cheer 
fulness in his tones, however little there might have 
been of that desirable feeling in his heart. 

" Well, brethren," he said, looking around at the 
Knot of well-known faces, which surrounded him in 
the gravity of civic authority, " this weighty matter 
is, at length, happily, and, as it has been effected 
without bloodshed, I may say, peaceably over! The 
Benedictines are departed, and though the excellent 
Abbot hath taken post in a neighboring abbey, whence 
he sends forth brave words to frighten those who are 
unused to more dangerous missiles, it will be long 
before we shall again hear Limburg bell tolling in 
the Jaergerthal." 

" For that I can swear," said the smith, who was 
among the inferiors that crowded a corner of the 
hall, occupying as little space as possible, in defer 
ence to their head-men ; " my own sledge hath 
helped to put the fine-tuned instrument out of tune I" 


" We are now met to hear further propositions 
from the monks ; but as the hour set for the arrival 
of their agent is not yet come, we can lighten the 
moments by such discourse as the circumstances 
may seem to require. Hast any thing to urge that 
will ease the minds of the timid, brother Wolfgang* 
if so, of God s name, give it utterance, that w 
may know the worst at once." 

The affinity between Wolfgang and Heinrich ex 
isted altogether in their civic relations. The former, 
although he coveted the anticipated advantages that 
were to result from the downfall of Limburg, had a 
constitutional deference for all superior power, and 
was unable to enjoy the triumph, without the bitter 
est misgivings concerning the displeasure of the 
Elector and Rome. He was aged, too, a fact that 
served to heighten the tremor of tones, that, by a 
very general convention, are termed raven. 

" It is wise to call upon the experienced and wise, 
for counsel, in pressing straits," returned the old 
burgher, " for years teach the folly of every thing 
human, inclining us to look at the world with mode 
ration, and with less love for ourselves, and our in 
terests " 

" Brother Wolfgang, thou art not yet yielding so 
fast as thou wouldest have us believe," interrupted 
Heinrich, who particularly disliked any discouraging 
views of the future. "Thou art but a boy the 
difference between us cannot be greater than some 
five-and-twenty years." 

" Not that, not that ; I count but three-and-sev- 
enty, and thou mayest fairly number fifty-and-five." 

" Thou heapest honors on me I little deserve, friend 
Wolfgang. I shall not number the days thou namest 
these many months, and time marches fast enough 
without any fillips from us to help him. If I have 
yet seen more than fifty-four, may my fathers arise 


from their graves to claim the little they left behind, 
when they took leave of earth !" 

" Words will make neither young, but I could 
wish we had found means to lay this unquiet spirit 
of Limburg, without so much violence and danger 
to ourselves. I am old, and have little interest in 
life, except to see those who will come after me 
happy and peaceful. Thou knowest that I have 
neither chick nor child, neighbor Heinrich, and the 
heart of such a man can only beat for all. T were, 
indeed, folly in me to think of much else, than of 
that great future which lies before us." 

" Sapperment !" exclaimed the smith, who was 
disposed to presume a little on the spirit he had 
shown in the late attack. "Worshipful Burgomas 
ter, were Master Wolfgang to deal out some of his 
stores a little freely to the Benedictines, the whole 
affair might be quietly settled, and Deurckheim 
would be a great gainer. I warrant you now, that. 
Bonifacius would be glad to receive a well-told sum 
in gold, without question or farther account, in lieu 
of his lodgings and fare in Limburg, of which he 
was only a life-tenant at best. At least, such had 
been rny humor, an it had pleased Heaven to have 
made me a Benedictine, and Bonifacius a smith." 

" And where is this gold to be had, bold-speaking 
artisan ?" demanded the aged burgher, severely. 

" Where but from your untouched stores, vene 
rable Wolfgang," answered the single-minded smith; 
" thou art old, father, and, as thou truly sayest, with 
out offspring ; the hold of life is getting k ose, and to 
deal with thee in frankness, I see no manner in which 
the evil may be so readily turned from our town." 

" Peace, senseless talker ! dost think thy betters 
have no other employment for their goods than to 
cast them to the winds, as thy sparks scatter at the 
stroke of the sledge? The little I have hath been gain 
ed with sore toil and much saving, and it may yet be 


needed to keep wane and beggary from my door. 
Nay, nay, when we are young we think the dirt 
may be turned to gold ; hot blood and lusty limbs 
cause us to believe man equal to any labor, ay, even 
to living without food ; but when experience and 
tribulation have taught us truth, we come to know 
neighbors, the value of pence. I am of a long 
living stock, Heaven help us ! and there is greate 
likelihood of my yet becoming a charge to the town 
than of my ever doing a tithe of that, this heedless 
smith hath hinted." 

" By St. Benedict, master ! I hinted naught : wha! 
I said was in plain words, and it is this, that one so 
venerable for his years, and so respected for his 
means, might do great good in this strait ! Such 
an act would sweeten the few days thou yet hast." 

" Get thee away, fellow; thou talkest of death an 
it were a joke. Do not the young go to their graves 
as well as the old, and are there not instances of 
thousands that have outlived their means ? No, I 
much fear that this matter will not be appeased 
without mulcting the artisans in heavy sums; 
but happily, most that belong to the crafts are young 
and able to pay !" 

The reply of the smith, who was getting warm 
in a dispute in which he believed all the merit was 
on his own side, was cut short by a movement 
among the populace, who crowded the outer door 
of the town-house ; the burghers seemed uneasy, as 
if they saw a crisis was near, and then a beadle 
announced the arrival of a messenger from the 
routed community of Limburg. The civic au 
thorities of Deurckheim, although assembled ex 
pressly with the expectation of such a visit, were, 
like all men of but indifferently regulated minds, 
taken by surprise at the moment. Nothing was di 
gested, no plan of operations had been proposed 
and, although all had dreamed for several nights 01 


the very subject before them, not one of them all 
had thought upon it Still it was now necessary to 
act, and after a little bustle, which had no other ob 
ject than an idle attempt to impose upon the senses 
of the messenger, by a senseless parade, orders 
were given that the latter should be admitted. 

The agent of the monks was himself a Benedic 
tine. He entered the hall, attended only by the 
city-guard who had received him at the gate, with 
his cowl so far drawn upon his head as to conceal 
the features. There was a moment of curiosity, 
and the name of " Father Siegfried" was whispered 
from one to another, as each judged of the man by 
the exterior. 

"Uncover, of Heaven s mercy! Father," said 
Heinrich, " and seat thyself as freely in the town- 
hall of Deurckheim, as if thou wert at thine ease in 
the ancient cloisters of Limburg. We are lions 
in the attack, but harmless as thy marble cherubs, 
when there is not occasion for your true manly quali 
ties; so take thy seat, of God s name ! and be of good 
cheer; none will harm thee." 

The voice of the Burgomaster lost its confidence 
as he concluded. The Benedictine was calmly re 
moving the cowl; and when the cloth fell, it exposed 
the respected features of Father Arnolph. 

" He that comes in the service of him I call mas 
ter, needeth not this assurance," answered the monk; 
"still I rejoice to find ye in this mood, and not bent 
on maintaining an original error, by further out 
rages. It is never too late to see our faults, nor yet 
to repair them." 

"I cry thy mercy, Holy Prior! we had taken 
thee for a very different member of the fraternity, 
and thou art not the less welcome for being him 
thou art." 

Heinrich arose respectfully, and his example was 
followed by all present. The Prior seemed pleased 
2 F 


and a glow, like that which a benevolent hope cre 
ates, passed athwart his countenance. With per 
fect simplicity he took the offered stool, as the least 
obtrusive manner of inducing the burghers to re 
sume their seats. The experiment produced the 
effect he intended. 

" I should pretend to an indifference I do not feel, 
were I to say, Heinrich Frey, that I come among 
you, men to whom I have often administered the 
rites of the church during long and watchful years, 
without the wish to find that my ministrations are 

" If there dwelleth knave in Deurckheim whose 
heart hath not been touched by thy good works, 
Father, the hound is without bowels, and unfit to 
live among honest people." 

" Most true !" exclaimed the smith, in his audible 
by-play. " The Burgomaster doth us all justice ! I 
never struck spark from iron, more freely than I will 
render respect to the most reverend Prior. His 
prayers are like tried steel, and next to those of him 
of the hermitage are in most esteem among us. 
Fill me an abbey with such men, and for one, I 
shall be ready to trust all our salvation to their 

fodliness, without thought or concern for ourselves, 
apperment ! could such a community be found, il 
would be a great relief to the laymen, and more 
particularly to your artisan, who might turn all 
his thoughts to his craft, with the certainty of being 
watched by men capable of setting the quickest- 
witted devil at defiance !" 

Arnolph listened to this digression with patience, 
and he acknowledged the courtesy and friendliness 
of his reception, by a slow inclination of the head. 
He was too much accustomed to hear these tempo 
ral applications of the spiritual interests of which 
he was a minister, to be surprised at anything; and 
he was too meek on the subject of his own deserv- 


ing, to despise any because they were weaker than 
himself. The Christian religion seems to be divided 
into two great classes of worshippers ; those who 
think its consolations are most palpable in their 
direct and worldly form, and those whose aspira 
tions are so spiritualized, and whose thoughts are 
so sublimated, as to consider it a metaphysical the 
ory, in which the principal object is to preserve the 
logical harmony. For ourselves, we believe it to 
be a dispensation from God, to those of his creatures 
who are fearfully composed of the material and 
immaterial, and that so far as it is connected with 
our probation here, it is never to be considered as 
entirely distinct from one or the other of the great 
attributes of our nature. It is evident that such 
were not the views of the honest smith; and it is 
probable, had the matter been thoroughly sifted, it 
would have been found that, as respects Deurck 
heim, he was altogether of the popular party. 

" Thou comest, Father, like the dove to the ark, 
the bearer of the olive-branch," resumed Heinrich ; 
4 though for our northern regions a leaf of the oak 
would more likely have been the emblem, had Ara 
rat been one of these well-wooded hills of ours." 

I come to offer the conditions of our brother 
hood, and to endeavor to persuade the misguided in 
Deurckheim to accept them. The holy abbots, with 
the right reverend fathers in God, the Bishops of 
Spires and Worms, now assembled in the latter city, 
have permitted me to be the bearer of their terms, 
an office I have sought, lest another should forget 
to entreat and influence, in the desire to menace." 

" Gott bewahre ! thou hast done well, as is thy 
wont, excellent Arnolph! Threats are about as use 
ful with Deurckheim, as the holy water is in our 
rhenish, both being well enough in their places ; but 
he that cannot be driven must be led, and liquor 
that is right good in itself needeth no flavor from 


the church. As for this old misunderstanding be- 
tween Limburg of the one side, and the noble 
Count of Hartenburg with our unworthy town of 
the other, the matter may be said to be now of 
easy adjustment, since the late events have cleared 
it of its greatest difficulty ; and so, from my heart, 
I wish thee joy of thy mission, and felicitate the 
town that it hath to treat with one so skilful and so 
reasonable. Thou wilt find us in a friendly humor, 
and ready to meet thee half-way; for I know not 
the man in Deurckheim that desireth to push the 
controversy a foot further, or who is not at heart 

" No, that would be out of reason and charity," 
said the smith, speaking again among the auditors, 
" We ought to show these Benedictines an exam 
ple of moderation, neighbors ; and therefore for 
one, though no better than a poor artisan that gain- 
eth his bread by blows on the anvil, do I agree with 
the worshipful Heinrich, and say, of God s name ! 
let us be reasonable in our demands, and be content 
with as little as may be, in the settlement of our 

The Prior listened patiently, as usual, but a hectic 
glowed, for an instant, on his cheek. It disappeared, 
and the benevolent blue eye was again seen shining 
amid features that the cloister and the closet had 
long since robbed of all other bloom. " Ye know, 
burghers of Deurckheim," he answered, "that in 
assailing the altars of Limburg ye set a double 
power at defiance; that of the Church, as it is 
constituted and protected on earth, and that of God. 
My errand, at this moment, is to speak of the first. 
Our Father of Worms is sorely angered, and he 
has not failed to address himself directly and prompt 
ly to our Father at Rome. In addition to this rev 
erend appeal, messengers have been dispatched to 
both the Elector and Emperor, as well as to divers 


of the Ecclesiastical Princes who rule on the banks 
of the Rhine. This is a fearful array of power to be 
met by a mountain baron, and a city whose walls 
can be measured by the leg in so short a time. 
But chiefly would I lay stress on the evil that may 
flow from the displeasure of the Head of the Church." 

" And should he read the late exploit with severity, 
reverend Prior, what are we to look to, as its fruits?" 

" To be denounced as excluded from the fold, 
and to be left to the wickedness and folly of your 
own hearts. In a word, excommunication." 

" Umph ! this might prove a short way of re 
cruiting the followers of Brother Luther! thou know- 
est, holy Arnolph, that men look more and more 
closely, every day, into these disputed points." 

" Would that they looked with more humility and 
understanding! If ye consider the denunciations 
and benedictions of him to whom has been confided 
the authority to bless and to curse, as of little weight, 
no words of mine can heighten their effect ; but all 
among ye who are not prepared to go the length 
that your Burgomaster hath just hinted, may deem 
it prudent to pause, ere they incur the heavy risk of 
living under such a weight of Heaven s displeasure." 

The burghers regarded each other in doubt, few 
among them being yet prepared to push resistance 
so far. Some inwardly trembled, for habit and 
tradition were too strong for the new opinions; 
some shrewdly weighed the temporal rather than 
the spiritual consequences, and others ruminated on 
the possibility of enduring the anathema in so good 
company. There are thousands that are willing to 
encounter danger in large bodies, who shrink from 
its hazards alone ; and perhaps the soldier goes to 
the charge quite as much stimulated by the sympa 
thy of association, as he is sustained by the dread 
of shame or the desire of renown. The civic coun 
sellors of Deurckheim now found themselves in 


some such plight, and each man felt assurance of 
doubt, much as he happened to meet with either of 
those feelings expressed in the eyes of his neighbor 

"Have ye any less godly proposition to make?" 
asked Heinrich, who perceived that the moral part 
of his civic support began to waver, " for these are 
points in which we are better skilled, than on those 
that touch your doctrinal niceties." 

" I am commanded to say, that, as becomes theii 
divine office, the brotherhood of Limburg is dis 
posed to pardon and forget, inasmuch as duty will 
allow, the late act of Deurckheim, on conditions 
that may be named." 

" Ay, this is christian-like, and will meet with a 
ready return, in our dispositions. On our side, too, 
holy Prior, there is every wish to forget the past, 
and to look only to a quiet and friendly future 
do I interpret the intentions of the town well, my 
neighbors ?" 

" To the letter ! no clerk could do it better. 1 
" Yes, we are of the community s mind ; it is wise 
to live at peace, and to pardon and overlook;" were 
ready answers to this appeal. 

" Thou hearest, father ! a better mood no minister 
or messenger need wish ! Fore Heaven ! we are 
all of one mind in this particular; and I know not 
that the man would find safety in Deurckheim, who 
should talk of aught but peace !" 

" It is to be mourned, that ye have not always 
been of this humor ; I come not, however, to re 
proach, but to reclaim ; not to defy, but to persuade ; 
not to intimidate, but to convince. Here are the 
written propositions of the holy divines by whom I 
am charged with this office of mediator, and I leave 
it for a time to your private consultations. When 
ye shall have well digested this fit offer, I will come 
among ye in peace and friendliness." 

The written proposals were received, and tha 


whole assembly rose to do the Prior honor. As the 
latter left the hall, he asked permission of several 
of the burghers, among whom was Heinrich Frey, 
to visit their families, in the spirit of Christian guar 
dianship. The desired consents were obtained with- 
>ut demur or doubt, on the part of any ; for what- 
ver may be said or thought of the errors of public 
opinion, it is usually right where the means are 
possessed of at all giving it a true direction. The 
high estimation in which Arnolph was held, by the 
mere force of popular instinct, was never more 
plainly seen than on the present occasion, when 
even those who had so lately warred against the 
community, threw open their doors without reserve ; 
though it was well known, that the late policy of the 
town had many a secret enemy, and many a bitter 
commentator, in that sex which is sometimes as 
slow to incite to violence and resistance, as at others 
it is thoughtless and hasty. 


"What well-appointed leader fronts us here ?" 

King Henry IV. 

THE missive of the monks was written in Latin. 
At that period few wrote but the learned, and every 
noble or town was obliged to maintain a scholar to 
perform what are now the commonest duties of 
intercourse. The clerkly agent of Deurckheim had 
been educated for the Church, and had even re 
ceived the tonsure; but some irregularities of life, 
which, as it would appear, were not within the pale 
of clerical privileges, or which had been so un 
guarded as to bring scandal on the profession, com 
pelled him to give his destinies a new direction. 
As hapuens with most men who have expended 


much time and labor in qualifying themselves foi 
any particular pursuit, and who are unexpectedly 
driven from its exercise, this individual, who was 
named Ludwig, and who was often ironically styled 
in common parlance Father Ludwig, never com*- 
pletely succeeded in repairing the injury done by 
the first false step he had made. His acquirements 
procured for him a certain amount of consideration 
but as he was known to be somewhat free in his 
manner of life, and, especially as schism grew strong 
in Germany, a bold sceptic on most of the distinc 
tive doctrines of the Catholic Church, he ever wore 
about his character some of that fancied looseness, 
which insensibly attaches itself to all renegades, 
whether their motives be more or less corrupt. Stili 
as he was known to be instructed, the multitude 
ascribed more virtue to his secession than it would 
have imputed to the withdrawal from the fold of 
fifty sincere believers ; for most believed there were 
means of judging that belonged to the initiated, 
which did not i all to the lot of those who worship 
ped in the outer court. We have daily proofs that 
this weakness reaches imto the temporal interests of 
life, and that opinions are valued in proportion as 
there is believed to be some secret means of acquir 
ing information; tfeoiagh men rarely conceal any 
thing that they know which may be revealed, and 
few indeed are disposed to " hide their lights under 
a bushel" 

Ludwig forgot BO pafft of the intonation or empha 
sis, while he uttered the unintelligible phrases of the 
monkish missive* His auditors listened the more 
attentively, because they did not understand a syl 
lable of what was sadd ; attention seeming usually 
to be riveted in an inverse ratio to the facilities of 
comprehension. Perhaps some of the higher digni 
taries flattered themselves, that their inferiors mighi 
be duped in ..o the belief of their attainments; a fact 


that could not fail to increase their influence, since 
there is no better evidence of the innate aspirations 
of our intellectual being, than the universal defer 
ence that is paid to knowledge. We have hazarded 
this supposition against the civic authorities of 
Deurckheim, because we believe it depends upon a 
general principle of human ambition ; and because 
in our own case, we well remember hearing out a 
sermon of more than an hour s duration delivered 
in Low Dutch, and in a damp church in Holland, 
when not a word, from the text to the benediction, 
was understood. 

" Right learnedly worded, and no doubt of proper 
courtesy !" exclaimed Heinrich, when the letter was 
ended, and while the clerk was clearing his spec 
tacles,- preparatory to the more vulgar version 
" It is a happy strife, neighbors, in which such lan 
guage passes between the parties ; for it proves that 
charity is stronger than malice, and that reason is 
not forgotten merely because there have been 

" I have rarely heard braver words," answered 
a fellow-burgher, " or those that are better penned ! 

" Potz-tausend !" muttered the smith ; " it were 
almost a sin to dispossess men that can write thus !" 

Murmurs of approbation passed through the 
crowd, and not an individual was there, with the 
solitary exception of a gaping idiot that had stolen 
into the hall, who did not affect to have received 
more or less pleasure from the communication. 
Even the idiot had his share of satisfaction, for, by 
the pure force of sympathy, he caught gleamings 
of a delight that seemed so strong and so general 

Ludwig now commenced translating the letter 
into the harsh, energetic, German of the Rhine. 
The wonderful capabilities of the language enabled 
him to convert the generalities and comprehensive 
terms of the Latin, with a minuteness of significa- 


tion, which put the loss of any shade of idea utterly 
out of the question. 

What the monks had meant, and perhaps even 
more, was laboriously, and with malignant pleasure, 
rendered ; and so rendered, as to give to each 
xpression the fullest weight and meaning. 

We have no intention of attempting the office of 
translating this harsh summons ourselves, but must 
be content with a brief summary of its contents. 
The instrument opened with a greeting that was not 
unlike those which were sent, in the first ages of 
the present dispensation, from the apostles to the 
churches of the east. It then contained a short but 
pointed narrative of the recent events, which were 
qualified in a way that the reader can easily ima 
gine ; it proceeded to refer to the spiritual and tem 
poral authorities from which the brotherhood had 
assurances of support ; and it concluded by demand 
ing, under the penalty of incurring every earthly 
and heavenly risk, an enormous sum in gold, as a 
pecuniary reparation for the injury done a com 
plete and absolute submission of the town to the 
jurisdiction of the community, even more than was 
ever before pretended to a public and general 
acknowledgment of error, with a variety of pen 
ances and pilgrimages to be performed by func 
tionaries that were named and the delivery of 
Heinrich Frey, with eleven others of the principal 
inhabitants, into the Abbot s hands as hostages, until 
all of these exactions and conditions should be com 
pletely and satisfactorily fulfilled. 

\Vh e e e w !" whistled Heinrich, when 
Ludwig ended, after a most provoking prolixity, 
that had completely exhausted the Burgomaster s 
patience. " Himmel ! here is a victory that is likely 
to cost us our means, our characters, our liberties, our 
consciences, and our ease ! Are the monks mad, 
Master Ludwig, or art thou sporting with our ere- 


dulity : Do they really speak of hostages, and of 
gold ?" 

" Of a surety, worshipful Herr, arid seemingly 
with a right good will." 

" Wilt read the part touching the hostages again, 
in the Latin ; thou mayest have indiscreetly over 
looked a conjunction or a pronoun, as I think thou 
callest these notable figures of speech," 

" Ay, it were well to judge of the letter by the 
Latin," echoed the smith ; " one never knows the 
quality of his metal, at the first touch of the ham 

Ludwig read, a second time, extracts in the ori 
ginal, and, through a species of waggery, by which 
he often took a secret and consolatory revenge for 
the indignities he frequently received from the igno 
rant, and which served him as food of merriment 
and as a vent to his confined humors in occasional 
interviews with others of his own class, he gave 
with singular emphasis the terms of greeting, which 
were, as usual, embellished with phrases of priestly 
benediction, as the part that especially demanded 
the prompt delivery of Heinrich Frey and his fel 
lows into the hands of the Benedictines. 

" Gott bewahre !" cried the Burgomaster, who 
had shifted a leg each time the clerk glanced an 
eye at him over his spectacles " I have other con 
cerns than to sit in a cell, and Deurckheim would 
fare but badly were the town left without so large 
a share of its knowledge and experience. Prithee, 
Master Ludwig, give us the kinder language of these 
Benedictines ; for methinks there may be found 
some words of peace in the blessings they bestow. 

The crafty clerk now read, in the original, the 
strongest of the denunciations, and the parts of the 
letter which so peremptorily demanded the hostages. 

" How now, knave !" said the hasty Burgomaster, 
" thou hast not been faithful in thy former readings! 


Thou hearest, neighbors, I am named especially 
in their benedictions; for you must know, worthy 
burghers, that Henrieus means Heinrich, and Frey 

II 1 1*1 *! 1 


for their good wishes, expressed with this particu 
larity ; though the manner in whkh they introduce 
the hostages is unseemly." 

"I thought when it came to the worst," muttered 
the smith, "that Master Heinrich would be con 
sidered with especial favor. This it is, brother arti 
sans, to be honored iw one s town, and to have a 
name !" 

"There sounds a parley!" interrupted the Bur 
gomaster. " Can these crafty monks have dared 
to trifle with us, by seeding the choicest of their 
flock to hold us in dise-owsev while they steal upon 
us in armor ?" 

The idea was evidently unpleasant to most of the 
council, and to none more so than to the aged Wolf 
gang, whose years woukl sem to have given fess 
value to his personal safety than to the rest. Many 
quitted the hall, while those that remained appeared 
to be detained more by their apprehensions than by 
their fortitude. Heinrich, who was constitutionally 
firm, continued the most undisturbed of them all, 
though even he went from window to window, like 
a man that was uneasy. 

" If the godly villains have done this treachery, 
let them look to it we are not vassals to be hood 
winked with a cowl !" 

"Perhaps, worshipful and wise Heinrich," said 
the crafty Ludwig, "they send the trumpet, in readi 
ness to receive the hostages." 

" The holy magi curse them, and their impudent 
long-winded musician ! How now, fellow ! whe 
maketh this tan ta ra ra at our gate 1" 


The noble Count of Hartenburg is at the valley 
side of the town, honorable Burgomaster, with a 
stout troop of mounted followers," announced the 
breathless runner, who came on this errand. " He 
chafes at the delay, but as the order to keep fast is 
so rigid, the captain of the watch dares not unbar 
and unbolt without permission had." 

"Bid the valiant and faithful burgher undo his 
fastenings, o Heaven s name ! and right speedily. 
We should have bethought us, excellent neighbors, 
of the chances of this visit, and had a care that 
our princely friend were without this cause of com 
plaint. But we should rejoice, too, that our people 
are so true, as to keep their trust even against 
one so known and honored. I warrant ye, neighbors, 
were it the imperial Karl himself, he would fare no 
better : " 

Heinrich was interrupted while vaunting and ex 
tolling the civic discipline, by the trampling of horses 
feet on the pavement below the windows, and on 
looking out he saw Emich and all his cortege coolly 

" Umph !" ejaculated the Burgomaster "go forth, 
and do reverence to my Lord the Count." 

The council awaited in deep silence the appear 
ance of their visitor. Emich entered the hall with 
the assured step of a superior, and with a counte 
nance that was clouded. He bowed to the saluta 
tions of the council, signed for his armed followers 
to await at the door, and walked himself to the seat 
which Heinrich had previously vacated, and which 
in truth was virtually the throne of Deurckheim. 
Placing his heavy form in the chair, with the air of 
one accustomed to fill it, he again bowed, and made 
a gesture of the hand, which the burghers under 
stood to be an invitation to be seated. With doubt 
ing faces the awed authorities submitted, receiving 
that permission as a boon, which they were ready 
2 G 


so lately themselves to urge as a civility. Heinrich 
looked surprised, but, accustomed to pay great de 
ference to his noble friend, he returned the bow and 
smile for he was especially saluted with a smile 
and took the second place. 

" It was not well, my worthy townsmen, to clos 
your gates thus churlishly against me," commenced 
the baron ; " there are rights and honors that ought 
to be respected, at all hours and seasons, and I mar 
vel that this need be taught to the Deurckheimers 
by a Count of Leiningen. I and my train were 
held at parlance at your barriers, an we had been 
so many wandering gipsies, or some of the free 
bands that sell their arquebuses and lances to the 
highest bidder !" 

" That there may have been some little delay, my 
Lord Count " answered Heinrich 

" Little, Burgomaster ! dost thou call that little 
which keeps a noble of Leiningen chafing at a gate, 
amid dust and heat, and gaping mouths ? thou 
knowest not the spirit of our steeds, Herr Frey, if 
thou irnaginest they like such sudden checks of the 
curb. We are of high mettle, horses and riders, 
and must have our way when fairly spurred !" 

" There was every desire, nobly born Emich, to 
do you honor, and to undo our bolts as speedily as 
might be done ; for this end we were about to depute 
the necessary orders, when we were suddenly 
favored with your gracious and high dispensing 
company. We doubt not that the captain of the 
watch reasoned with himself, and did that, of good 
intention and of his own accord, which he would 
speedily have been called upon to do, by our com 

"God s truth ! that may not prove so true," an 
swered Emich, laughing. " Our impatience was 
stronger than your bolts, and lest the same oversight 


might renew the inconvenience, we found means to 
enter with little formality." 

The burghers in general seemed greatly troubled, 
and Heinrich as greatly surprised. The baron saw 
that enough had been said, for the moment ; and, 
assuming a more gracious mien, he continued in 
another strain. 

" Well, loving townsmen," he said, " it is now a 
happy week, since all our desires have been accom 
plished. The Benedictines are defeated, the Jae- 
gerthal is at peace and under the sway of its rightful 
Lord, and yet the sun rises and sets as before, the 
heavens seem as smiling, the rains as refreshing, 
and all our hopes as reasonable, as of old ! There is 
to be no miracle in their behalf, Herr Heinrich, and 
we may fain sleep in peace." 

" That may depend, Lord Count, on other humors 
than ours. Here are reports abroad that are any 
thing but pleasant to the ear, and our honest towns 
men are troubled lest, after doing good service in 
behalf of their betters, they may yet be made to 
pay all the charges of the victory." 

" Set their hearts at peace, worthy Burgomaster, 
for I have not thrust a hand into the ecclesiastical 
flame, without thought of keeping it from being 
scorched. Thou knowest I have friends, and twill 
not be easy to put a Count of Leiningen to the ban." 

" Nay, we doubt but little, illustrious noble, of your 
safety, and of your house s ; our fear is for our 

"Thou hast only to lean on me, Master Frey. 
When the tie between us shall be explained more 
clearly to the Emperor and the Diet, and when our 
loving wishes, as respects each other, shall be better 
understood, all will know that to strike Deurckheim 
is to aim a blow at me. Whence cometh this sud 
den fear, for last reports touching your condition 


said that the town was firm of heart, and bent ot\ 
joining Luther, rather than confess ? 

* Sapperment ! the heart must not always be 
judged by the countenance ! Here is the smith, who 
is seldom of a bright visage, but were it said that 
his heart is as black as his face, great injustice 
would be done the man." 

A movement and a murmur betrayed the admira 
tion of those who crowded the door, at this figure 
of the Burgomaster. 

" Thou hast some reason for this sudden despond 
ency ?" rejoined the Count, glancing a look of indif 
ference at the artisans. 

"Why, to speak the truth, Lord Emich, Boni- 
facius hath sent us a missive, written in very fair 
Latin, and in a scholarly manner, that threatens us 
to a man with every Christian wish, from plagues to 
downright and incurable damnation." 

" And art thou troubled, Heinrich, at a scrawl of 
unintelligible words !" 

"I know not what is to be understood, Herr 
Count, if a demand for Heinrich Frey, with eleven 
others of our most respected, as hostages, doubtless 
to be kept from their affairs in some convent cells, 
on hard fare, and hard penance, for weary months, 
be not plain ! To this they add demands for gold, 
with pilgrimages, and penances, and other godly re 

" By whose hand got ye this ?" 

" By that of the honest Prior, a man of so much 
bowels, that I marvel he should be the bearer of a 
message so unwelcome and so uncharitable. But 
the best of us have our moments of weakness, for 
all are not always thoughtful or just." 

" Ha ! Arnolph is afoot ! Hath he departed ?" 

" He tarries, my good lord ; for look you, we have 
not yet determined on the fashion of our reply." 

" Thou wouldst not have thought of sending an- 


wer, without taking counsel of me, Herr Frey !" 
said Emich, sharply, and much in the manner that 
a parent reproves his child. " I am luckily arrived, 
and the matter shall be looked to. Have ye be 
thought ye of the fitting terms ?" 

" No doubt all have bethought them much, though 
as yet, none have uttered their secret opinions. For 
one, I cry out loudly against all hostages, though 
none could be readier than I to undergo this risk to 
serve the town ; but it is admitting an error in too 
plain evidence, and carrieth with it a confession that 
our faith is not to be depended on." 

This sentiment, which had long been struggling in 
Heinrich s breast, met with an audible echo in that 
of every one of the eleven who were likely, by sit 
uation and years, to be chosen for this honorable 
distinction; and every man among them uttered 
some proper phrase concerning the value of char 
acter, and the necessity of so demeaning themselves, 
as not to cheapen that of Deurckheim. Emich lis 
tened coolly, for it was of great indifference to him 
how much the burghers were alarmed, since their 
fears could only induce them the more to seek sup 
port from his interest and power. 

" Thou hast then refused the conditions ?" 

" We have done nothing, Herr Count, but we have 
thought much and sorely, as hath just been said. I 
take it, the gold and the hostages will find but little 
favor among us ; but, rather than keep the Palati 
nate in a disturbed and insecure state, and as we 
are quiet burghers, who look to peace and the means 
of getting their bread, our answer may not be so 
hort, could the matter be brought down to a few 
chosen penitents and pilgrimages. Though half of 
Brother Luther s mina in many things, it were well 
to get quit of even the chances of damnation, for a 
few sore feet and stripes, that might be so managed 
as to do little civic harm." 


" By the lineage of my house ! excellent Heinrich, 
thou dost but echo my thoughts. The Prior is a 
man with bowels, and this matter shall be speedily 
arranged. We must bethink us of the details, for 
these monks are close calculators, and on a time are 
said to have outwitted Lucifer. First then, there 
shall be an offering of gold." 

" Nay, my Lord Count will consider the means of 
our town !" 

" Peace, honest Heinrich," whispered Emich, 
leaning towards the place where the Burgomaster 
and two or three of the principal members of the 
council sat " We have accounts from the Hebrews 
at Koeln, which say the Limburg treasures may be 
well applied, in this manner, to purchase a little 
peace. We will be liberal as becomes our names," 
he now spoke to all, " and not send the brotherhood 
naked into a world, which is getting every day less 
disposed to clothe them ; we must drain our coffers 
rather than they should starve, and this point may 
be looked upon as settled. As for our penitents and 
pilgrims, the castle and the town shall equally fur 
nish a share. I can send the lieutenant of my men- 
at-arms, who hath a nimble foot Gottlob the cow 
herd, to whom punishment is fairly due, on many 
general accounts and others doubtless that may 
be found. What good, of this nature, can Deurck- 
heim supply ?" 

" We are a homely people, high-born Graf, and 
having fewer virtues than our betters, are not so 
well gifted either in vices. As becomelh a middle 
state, we are content with no great excess in the 
one or the other of the more striking qualities ; and 
yet I doubt not, neighbors, that at need there might 
be among us men, who would not fare the worse 
for wholesome correction and fitting penances ?" 

Heinrich looked about him, in an inquiring man 
ner, while each burgher passed the investigation on 


to the next, as men forward a glance that they wish 
to think has no application to themselves. The 
crowd at the door recoiled a pace, and heads were 
turned curiously, and eyes roamed among the in 
feriors, with quite as much expression as had just 
been done by their superiors. 

" There are delinquents, young and thoughtless 
varlets, who vex the town with their ribaldry and 
noise, that it might do to scourge with the church s 
rod," suggested the tremulous and aged Wolfgang. 

" St. Benedict will be put off with none of these," 
bluffly answered the Burgomaster; "he must have 
men of substance and of some esteem, or the 
affair will be as far as ever from a happy conclusion. 
What thinkest thou, honest and patriotic Dietrich? 
Thou hast a constitution to endure, and a heart of 

" Tausend sex und zwanzig !" returned the smith; 
you little know all my ailings, most worshipful 
masters, if you think I am near this force ! I have 
difficulties of breath, that are only at peace near 
the heat of the forge, and my heart gets soft as a 
feather on a journey. Then there is the wife and 
the young to wail my absence, and I am not scholar 
enough to repeat a prayer more than some six or 
ten times in a day." 

This excuse did not appear to satisfy the council, 
who, acting on that principle of exaction which is 
found among all people and in all communities, felt 
disposed to recollect the former services of the 
artisan, as a sort of apology for further claims on 
his exertions. 

" Nay, for one that hath ever been so free at the 
wish of Deurckheim, this plea cometh with an ili 
grace," answered Heinrich, a sentiment that was 
audibly repeated in a general exclamation of dis 
content by all the other burghers. 


" We expected other reply from thee !" 

" Well, since the worshipful council expects but 
there will be the wife and the young, with none to 
care for them !" 

"That difficulty may be disposed of thou nast 
six, if I remember, in thy household ?" 

" Ten, honorable Heinrich not a mouth less than 
half a score, and all of an age to require much 
food and strong." 

" Here are all but two of our dozen, in a word, 
noble Emich," promptly added the Burgomaster; 
" and of a scriptural quality, for we are told, the 
prayers and sacrifices of the young and innocent 
are acceptable. Thanks, honest smith, and more 
than thanks : thou shalt have marks of a quality 
different from those left by the scourge. No doubt 
the others may be picked up among the useless and 

" Our affairs seem settled, loving burghers," an 
swered the Count. " Leave me to dispose of the 
question of indemnity, and look ye to the penitents, 
and to the seemliness of the atonement. Ye may 
retire, ye that throng the way." The mandate was 
hurriedly obeyed, and the door closed. "As for 
support at Heidelburg and Madrid," continued the 
Count, " the matter hath been looked to ; and should 
the complaint be pushed beyond decency at Rome, 
we have ahvays brother Luther as an ally. Boni- 
facius wanteth not for understanding, and when he 
looks deeper into our defences, and into the humor 
of the times, I know him for one that will be disposed 
to stay an evil, before it becomes an incurable sore. 
These shaven crowns, master Heinrich, are not like 
us fathers of families, much troubled for posterity ; 
for they leave no name or blood behind them ; and 
so long as we can fairly satisfy their present long 
ings, the truce may be considered as more than half 
concluded. To strip a churchman of his hoardings, 


needeth but a bold spirit, a present bribe, and a 
strong hand." 

The whole council murmured its approval of this 
reasoning, and the discussion now took a turn more 
inclining to the details. 

Emich grew gracious, and the burghers bolder. 
Some even laughed openly at their late apprehen 
sions, and nearly all thought they saw a final settle 
ment of this long-disputed and serious question. The 
Prior, who had^been engaged in visits of religious 
charity in the town, was soon summoned, and the 
Count assumed the office of communicating the 
common answer. 

The meeting between Emich and Father Arnolph 
was characteristic. It took place in the public 
hall, and in the presence of a few of the principal 
burghers. The Count was at first disposed to be 
haughty, imperious, and even repulsive; but the 
Monk was meek, earnest, and calm. The effect of 
this forbearance was quickly apparent. Their in 
tercourse soon grew more courteous, for Emich, 
when not excited, or misled by the cupidity that dis 
graced the age, possessed most of the breeding of 
his peers. On the other hand, Arnolph never lost 
sight of his duties, the chiefest of which he believed 
to be charity. 

" Thou art the bearer of the olive-branch, holy 
Prior," said the Count, as they took their seats, 
after some little previous parley ; " and pity tis, 
that all who wear the cowl, did not as well compre 
hend the pleasantest quality of their sacred charac 
ters. The world would grow less quarrelsome, and 
we who worship in the court of the temple, would 
be less disturbed by doubts touching those who lift 
its veil." 

" I did not look to hold discussion of clerkly duties 
with thee, Lord Count, when my superior sent me 
on this errand to the town of Deurckheim," mildlv 



answered the monk, indifferent to the other s \\ Jy 
compliments. " Am I, then, to consider the castle 
and the council as one ?" 

"In heart, humor, and interests; I might add, 
also, in rights and sovereignty; for, now all question 
of the Abbey is settled, the ancient temporal rule is 
replaced. Say I well, loving burghers 1" 

"Umph!" ejaculated Heinrich. The rest bent 
their heads, though doubtingly like men taken by 
surprise. But Emich seemed perfectly satisfied. 

" It is of no great moment who governs here, 
since the wrong done to God and our brotherhood 
must be repaired by those who have committed it. 
Hast thou examined the missive of the Abbey, 
Herr Burgomaster, and art ready with the reply 1" 

" This duty hath been done, reverend Arnolph, 
and here is our answer. As for the letter, it is our 
mature opinion, that it hath been indited in a fair 
hand, and in very learned Latin, as befitteth a 
brotherhood of so much repute. We deem this 
more creditable, since there have been some late 
heavy losses in books, and he who did this might 
not have the customary aid of materials to which 
use had made him familiar. As for what hath been 
said in the way of greeting and benedictions, holy 
Prior, we are thankful, and most especially for the 
part that is of thy share, which we esteem to be of 
particular unction ; in mine own behalf, especially 
would I thank all of the convent for the manner in 
which my name hath been introduced into theii 
good wishes ; though I must add, it were better that 
he who wrote had been content to stop there, since 
these frequent introductions of private personages, 
in matters of general concernment, are apt to raise 
envy and other evil passions. As respecting, more 
over, any especial pilgrimages and penances in my 
own person, I feel not the occasion, as would doubt- 


less be the fact at need, since we see most men 
pricked on to these mortifications by their own con 

The expiation is not sought for particular con 
solation, neither is it desired as a balm to the Con 
vent s wounds, but as an humble and a necessary 
atonement to God. In this view have we deemed it 
mportant to choose those who are most esteemed 
among men, since it is before the eyes of mankind 
that the expiation must be made. I am the bearer 
of similar proposals to the Castle, and, by high ec 
clesiastical authority, am I charged to demand that 
its well-born Lord, himself, make these acknowledg 
ments in his own person. The sacrifice of the hon 
ored and innocent hath more flavor than that of the 
mean and wicked." 

" Potz Tausend !" muttered Heinrich. " I see lit 
tle use for leading a clean life with such doctrines 
and discipline !" 

But Emich heard the proposal without a frown. 
Bold, haughty, and audacious, he was also deeply 
artful and superstitious. For years, his rude mind 
had been tormented by conflicting passions those 
of cupidity and religious dread ; and now that the 
former was satisfied, he had begun to reflect serious 
ly of appeasing his latent apprehensions in some 
effectual manner. Plans of various expiatory offer 
ings had already crossed his mind, and so far from 
hearing the declaration of the Benedictine with re 
sentment, he entertained the idea with pleasure. It 
seemed an easy and cheap expedient of satisfying 
all scruples ; for the re-establishment of the com 
munity on the hill of Limburg was a condition he 
knew to be entirely out of the question, in the present 
state of the public mind in Germany. In this humor, 
then, did he reply. The conference of course pro 
ceeded harmoniously, and it was protracted for 


several hours. But as its results will be more regu 
larly developed in the course of the narrative, we 
shall not anticipate events. 


" In a strange land 

Such things, however trivial, reach the heart, 
And through the heart the head, clearing away 
The narrow notions that grew up at home, 
And in their place grafting good will to all" 


IT is necessary to advance a few weeks in the 
order of time ; a change that will bring us to the 
middle of the warm and generous month of July. 
The hour was towards the close of day, and the 
place and scenery such as it is now our duty to de 

Let the reader imagine a high naked down, whose 
surface was slightly broken by irregularities. Scarce 
a tree was visible over the whole of its bald face, 
though a few stunted shrubs betrayed the efforts of 
the earth to push forth a meager vegetation. The 
air was pure, thin, and volatile, and, together with 
the soft blue of the void, denoted a great elevation 
above the vapors and impurities which linger nearer 
to regions that lie on the level of the sea. Notwith 
standing these never-failing signs of a mountain 
country, here and there were to be seen distant 
peaks, that shot upward into the fierce light, glitter 
ing with everlasting frost. Along one side of this 
naked expanse, the land fell suddenly away, towards 
a long, narrow, sheet of water, which lay a thou 
sand feet below. The shores of this lake, for such 
it was, were clothed with innumerable white dwell 
ings, and garnished with hamlets and vineyards, 
while a walled town, with its towers and battlements, 
occasionally darkened the shores. But these were 


objects scarcely to be seen, from the precise situa 
tion which we desire the mind of the reader to 
occupy. In the distant view, always in that direc 
tion, one favorably placed might have seen a vast 
range of undulating country, stretching towards 
the north and east, that had the usual characteristics 
of a region in which Alpine mountains begin gradu 
ally to melt into the plain. This region was beauti 
fied with several spots of dark blue, resembling so 
many deep reflections of the skies, which were 
sheets of limpid and tranquil water. Towards the 
south and west, the down was bounded by a natural 
wall of rude and gray rock, that rose, in nearly all 
its line, to the elevation of a mountain, and which 
shot up to a giddy height, near its centre, in two 
pointed cones, that, by their forms, coupled with 
other circumstances that shall be soon explained, 
had obtained the name of the Mitres. 

Near the barrier of mountain, and almost directly 
beneath these natural mitres, was a small village, 
whose houses, constructed of wood, had the wide 
roofs, numerous windows, and the peculiar resin- 
like color of Swiss habitations. 

The place was a hamlet rather than a village, 
and most of the land around it lay at waste, like all 
that was visible for miles, in every direction. On a 
rising ground near the hamlet, from which it was 
separated merely by a large esplanade, or green as 
we should be apt to term the spot, stood one of 
those mazes of roofs, chimneys, and towers, which 
in that age, and indeed even now, mark a conven 
tual pile. The edifices were large, complicated in 
their forms and order, and had been constructed 
without much architectural knowledge or taste ; the 
air of the whole being that of rude but abundant 
wealth. In the centre was a church, or chapel, 
evidently of ancient existence and simple origin, 
though its quaint outlines were elaborately decorated, 


after the fashion of the times, by a variety of after 
thoughts, and in a manner to show that means were 
not wanting to render the whole more magnificent, 
and that the fault of the construction lay rather in 
the first idea, than in any subsequent ability or incli 
nation to repair it. 

The site of this hamlet and down was in the 
celebrated Canton of Schwytz, a small district that 
has since given its name to the heroic confederation, 
that occupies so much of the country among and 
near the Western Alps. Its name was Einsiedlen ; 
the monastic buildings belonged to a convent of 
Benedictines, and the church contained one of the 
shrines even then most in repute, after that of Loretto. 
Time and revolutions have since elevated our Lady 
of Einsiedlen, perhaps, to the very highest rank 
among the pilgrimages of the Catholic ; for we have 
lately seen thousands crowding her altars, while we 
found the Santa Casa abandoned chiefly to the care 
of its guardians, or subject to the casual inspection 
of curious heretics. 

Having thus described the spot to which the scene 
is shifted, it is proper to refer to the actors. 

At a point distant less than a league from the 
hamlet, and on the side of the open down just men 
tioned, which lies next to the steep ascent from the 
lake of Zurich, and in the direction of the Rhine, 
there came a group of travellers of both sexes, and 
apparently of all ages, between declining manhood 
and vigorous youth. They were afoot, wearing the 
garb and symbols of pilgrims. Weariness had caused 
them to lengthen their line, and they went in pairs, 
the strongest in front, the feeble and more fatigued 
in the rear. 

In advance marched two men. One wore the 
gown and cowl of a Benedictine, while he carried, 
like the rest, the staff and wallet of a pilgrim. His 
companion had the usual mantle decorated with scol- 


lop shells, and also bore his scrip and stick. The 
others had the same attire, with the usual exceptions 
that distinguish the sexes. They consisted of two 
men of middle age, who followed those in front; 
two of each sex in pairs, all still young and active ; 
t\vo females, who were in their prime, though 
wearied and sad; and a maiden, who dragged her 
limbs after them with a difficulty disproportioned 
to hsr years. At the side of the latter was a crone, 
whose infirmities and age had enabled her to obtain 
the indulgence of an ass, on which she was seated 
comparatively at her ease ; though, by a license that 
had been winked at by the monk, her saddle was 
encumbered with the scrips of most of the female 
penitents. In the rear of all came two males, who 
seemed to form a sort of rear guard to the whole 

This group was composed of the Prior and Emich, 
who led the van; of Heinrich, and Dietrich, the 
smith ; of Gisela and Gottlob, with a youth and 
maiden from Deurckheim ; of Ulrike and Lottchen , 
of Meta and Use, and of M. Latouche and the 
Knight of Rhodes. These were the penitents chosen 
to expiate the late offence to the majesty of God, 
by prayers and mortifications before the shrine of 
Einsiedlen. The temporal question had been partially 
put at rest, by the intrigues and influence of the 
Count, backed, as he was, by timely applications of 
gold, and by the increasing heresy that had effectu 
ally shaken the authority of the Church throughout 
all Germany, and which had sufficiently apprized 
the practised Bonifacius, and his superiors, of the 
expediency of using great moderation in their de 

"St. Benedict make us thankful, holy father!" 
said the Count, as his gratified eye first beheld the 
long wished-for roofs of the convent. " We have 
burneyed a weary distance ; and this snail s pace, 


which, in deference to the weak, we are bound to 
observe, but little suits the impatience of a warrior, 
accustomed to steed and spur. Thou hast often 
visited this sacred shrine, pious Arnolph ?" 

The Monk had stopped, and with a tearful eye 
he stood gazing, in religious reverence, at the dis 
tant pile. Then kneeling on the grass, he prayed 
while the others, accustomed to these sudden de 
monstrations of zeal, gladly rested their limbs, tht 

"Never before hath eye of mine greeted yon 
holy pile," answered the Prior, as they slowly re 
sumed their journey ; " though often, in night dreams, 
hath my soul yearned for the privilege !" 

" Methinks, father, thou hast little occasion for 
penitence, or pilgrimage: thou, whose life hath 
rolled on in deeds of Christian charity and love." 

" Each day brings its evil, and each day should 
have its expiation." 

" Truly, not in marches over stony and mountain 
paths, like these we travel. Einsiedlen must have 
especial virtue, to draw men so far from their homes 
to do it honor. Hast the history of the shrine at 
command, reverend Prior ?" 

" It should be known to all Christians, and chiefly 
to the pilgrim. I had thought thee instructed in 
these great events !" 

"By the Magi! to speak thee honestly, Father 
Arnolph, the little friendship which hath subsisted 
between Limburg and my house, had given a dis 
relish for any Benedictine miracle, let it be of what 
quality it would ; but now that we are likely to be 
so lovingly united, I could gladly hear the tale, which 
will at least serve to divert our thoughts from a sub 
ject so grovelling as our own feet; for to conceal 
nothing, mine make most importunate appeals to be 
at rest !" 

" Our journey draweth near its end ; but, as thy 


request is reasonable, it shall be answered. Listen, 
then, Emich, and may the lesson profit thy soul 1 
During the reign of the illustrious and warlike Char 
lemagne, who governed Gaul, with so much of our 
Germany and the country of the Franks, there lived 
a youth of the ancient family of Hohenzollern, 
branches of which still possess principalities and 
marches in the empire. The name of this learned 
and pious youth was Meinard. Early fatigued with 
the vanities of life, he sought a hermitage, nearer 
than this to the banks of that lake which we so late 
ly crossed at Rapperschwyl. But, overburdened by 
the number of the curious and pious who visited his 
cell, the holy Meinard, after seven years of prayer, 
retired to a clear fountain, which must still run near 
yonder church, where another cell and a chapel 
were built for him, expressly by command of Hilde- 
garde, a royal lady, and the Abbess of a monastery 
in the town of Zurich. Here Meinard lived and 
here he died, filled with grace, and greatly blessed 
by godly exercises." 

" Father, had he a profitable and happy end, in 
this wild region ?" 

" Spiritually, nothing could have been more de 
sirable ; temporally, naught more foul. He died by 
the hands of vile assassins, to whom he had render 
ed hospitality. The deed was discovered by means 
of two crows, who followed the murderers to Zu 
rich, where they were taken and executed at least, 
so sayeth tradition. In a later age, the holy Meinard 
was canonized by Benedict VIII. For nearly half 
a century, the cell of Meinard, though in great re 
quest as a place of prayer, remained without a ten 
ant ; but at the end of that period, Beurun, a canon 
of the house of Burgundy, which house then ruled 
most of the country far and near, caused the chapel 
and cell to be repaired, replaced the image of the 
olessed Maria, and devoted his own life to the her- 

2 H2 


milage. The neighboring Seigneurs and Barons 
contributed to endow the place, and divers holy men 
joined themselves to the service of the altar, from 
which circumstance the shrine obtained the name 
of our Lady of the Hermits, its true appellation to 
this hour. It would weary thee to listen to the tale 
of miracles performed in virtue of their prayers, 
even in that early and less gifted condition of the 
place; but its reputation so circulated, that many 
came from afar to see and to believe. In the process 
of time, a regular community was established, and 
the church thou seest was erected, containing in its 
nave the original cell, chapel, and image of Saint 
Meinard. Of the brotherhood, Saint Eberhaud was 
named the Abbot." 

" I had thought there was still higher virtue in the 
place !" observed Emich, when the Prior paused, 
and seemingly a little disappointed ; for your deep 
sinner as little likes a simple dispensation, as the 
drunkard relishes small drinks. 

" Thou shalt hear. When the buildings were 
completed, and it became necessary to consecrate 
the place, agreeably to the forms and usages of the 
Church, Conrad, Bishop of Constance, was invited 
to discharge the holy office. Here cometh the won 
derful favor of Heaven ! As Conrad of Constance, 
with other pious men, arose to pray, at midnight of 
the day appointed for the service, they suddenly 
heard divine music most sweetly chanted bv angels. 
Though sore amazed and impressed, they were still 
sufficiently masters of their reason to discover that 
the unseen beings sang the prescribed formula of the 
consecration, that office which they were preparing 
themselves to perform a few hours later. Satisfied 
with this especial and wonderful interference, Con 
rad would have abstained from repeating a service 
which had already been thus performed, but for the 
demands and outcries of the ignorant. But when, 


after hours of delay, he was about to yield to their 
impatience, a clear voice three times admonished 
him of the blasphemy, by saying, * Cease, brother ! 
thy chapel is divinely consecrated P From that mo 
ment the place is so esteemed, and all our rites are 
performed as at a shrine of high behest and particu 
lar virtue." 

Emich crossed himself devoutly, having listened 
in perfect faith, and with deep interest ; for at that 
moment early impressions were stronger than the 
modern doubts. 

" It is good to be here, father," he reverently an 
swered ; " I would that Ermengarde, and all of my 
house, were at my side ! But are there any especial 
favors accorded to those who come hither, in a fit 
ting temper, in the way of temporal gifts or political 
considerations; since, being before a shrine so holy, 
I could fain profit by the sore pains and privations 
by which the grace is gained V 

The Prior seemed mortified, for, though he lent 
the faith required by the opinions of the age, to the 
tradition he had recounted, he was too well instruct 
ed in the true doctrines of his Church, not to per 
ceive the false bias of his companion s mind. The 
embarrassment caused a silence, during which the 
reader is to imagine that they passed on, giving 
place to other personages of the tale. 

Before turning to another group, however, we de 
sire to say distinctly, that, in relating the manner of 
the miraculous consecration of the chapel of * Our 
Lady of the Hermits, 1 we have wished merely to 
set the tradition before the reader, without inferring 
aught for, or against, its authenticity. It is well 
known that the belief of these supernatural inter 
ferences of Divine Power forms no necessary part 
of doctrine, even in that Church which is said to be 
the most favored by these dispensations; and it 
ought always to be remembered, that those sects 


which impugn these visible and physical signs of 
Omnipotence, entertain opinions, of a more purely 
spiritual character, tnat are scarcely less out of the 
course of ordinary and vulgar nature. In cases in 
which there exist so nice shades of distinction, and 
in which truth is so difficult of discovery, it is our 
duty to limit ourselves to popular facts, and as such 
have we given the history of Einsiedlen, its Abbey, 
and its Virgin. The opinion of Father Arnolph is 
the local opinion of our own times, and it is the 
opinion of thousands who, even now, yearly frequent 
the shrine. 

Heinrich and the smith were the couple next to 
the Count and the Prior, and of course they were 
the next to cross the stage. 

" It is no doubt much, or I may add altogether as 
you say, worshipful Burgomaster" 

" Brother Pilgrim ;" ruefully interrupted Heinrich. 

" I should have said, Brother Worshipful Pilgrim, 
though, Heaven it knows, the familiarity goes 
nigh to choke me 1 but it is much as you say, that 
whether we cling to Rome, or finally settle quietly 
into the new worship of Brother Luther, this jour 
ney ought, in all fairness, to be set down to our ac 
count, as of so much virtue ; for, look you, brother 
worshipful, it is made at the cost of Christian flesh 
and blood, and therefore should it be savory, with 
out much particularity concerning mere outward 
appearances. I do not think, were truth spoken, that 
wielding the sledge a twelvemonth would have done 
this injury to my feet 1" 

" Have mercy on thyself and me, good smith, and 
think less of these trifling grievances. What Heaven 
wills must happen, else would one of thy merit 
have risen higher in the world." 

" Thanks, Worshipful Brother Pilgrim and Bur 
gomaster; I will bethink me of resignation, though 
these wire-drawn pains are never to the liking of 


four men of muscle and great courage. A knock 
o the head, or the bullet of an arquebuse gives less 
uneasiness than smaller griefs much endured. Were 
things properly governed, the penances and pilgrim 
ages, and other expiations of the Church, would be 
chiefly left to the women." 

" We shall see hereafter how Luther hath ordered 
this : but having ourselves embarked in this journey 
for the good of Deurckheim, to say nothing of our 
own souls, it behoveth us to hold out manfully ; a 
duty the more easily performed, as we can now see 
the end of it. To speak thee fair, Dietrich, I do 
not remember ever to have beheld Benedictine abode 
with so much joy, as this we see at yonder moun 
tain s foot !" 

"Be of cheer, most honorable and excellent 
brother worshipful pilgrim ; the trial is near its end, 
and if we come thus far to do this honor to our 
own community, why, Himmel ! it is but the price 
paid for getting rid of another !" 

" Be of cheer, truly, brother smith, for it is but 
some kneeling, and a few stripes that each is to 
apply to his own back; after which the return will 
reasonably be more joyous than the advance." 

Encouraged by each other, the devotees hobbled 
on, their heavy massive frames yielding at ever} 
step, like those of overgrown oxen which had been 
but indifferently shod. As they passed by, their 
places were filled by the four, of whom Gisela and 
Gottlob formed a part. Among these the discourse 
was light and trifling, for bodily fatigue had little 
influence on the joyous buoyancy of such spirits; 
especially at a moment when they saw before them 
the immediate termination of their troubles. Not 
so with those that came next; these were Ulrike 
and her friend, who moved along the path, like those 
who were loaded with griefs of the soul. 

" God is among these hills, as he is on our plains, 


Lottchen !" said the former, continuing the discourse. 
" Yon temple is his shrine, as was that of Limburg ; 
and it is as vain for man to think of forgetting him 
on earth, as it would be to invade him in that Hea 
ven which is his throne ! What he doth is wise, and 
we will endeavor to submit." 

The words of Ulrike were perhaps more touched 
with resignation than her manner. The latter, though 
subdued, was filled with sorrow, and her voice was 
tremulous nearly to tears. Though the exhibition 
of her melancholy was deep and evident, it was oi 
a character which denotes no extinction of hope. 
On the other hand, the features, eye, and entire 
manner of her friend, bore the heavy and fatal im 
press of incurable woe. 

" God is among these hills !" repeated Lottchen, 
though she scarce seemed to hear the words ; " God 
is among these hills !" 

" We approach a much-esteemed shrine, dearest 
Lottchen : the Being, in whose name it hath been 
raised, will not permit us to depart from it unblessed." 

"We shall be blessed, Ulrike !" 

" Thou dwellest hopelessly on thy loss, my Lott 
chen ! Would thou had less thought of the past, 
and more of the future !" 

The smile with which the widow regarded her 
friend was full of anguish. 

" I have no future, Ulrike, but the grave !" 

" Dearest Lottchen ! we will speak of this holy 
shrine !" Emotion smothered her voice. 

" Speak of what thou wilt, my friend," answered 
the childless widow, with a frightful calm. " I see 
no difference in subjects." 

" Lottchen ! not when we discourse of Heaven !" 

The widow bowed her vacant eyes to earth, and 
they passed on. Their footsteps were succeeded by 
those of the beast ridden by Use, and by the falter 
ing tread of Meta. 


w Ay, yon is the shrine of our Lady of the Her 
mits!" said the former; "a temple of surpassing 
virtue ! WelS, Heaven is not in Churches and cha 
pels, and that of Limburg may yet be spared ; the 
more especially as the brotherhood was far from 
being of unexceptionable lives. Keep up thy heart, 
Meta, and think not of weariness, for not a pain dost 
thou now bear, that will not be returned to thee, 
another day, in joy, or in some other precious gift, 
This is Heaven s justice, which is certain to requite 
all equally, for good or evil, Well-a-day! it is 
this certainty that comforteth the godly, and giveth 
courage to the tottering." 

She spoke to an insensible listener. The counte 
nance of Meta, like that of Lottchen, expressed 
hopelessness, though it were in less palpable and 
certain signs. The eye was dull but wandering, the 
cheek pale, the mouth convulsive and at times com 
pressed, the step languid, and the whole being of 
this young and innocent creature seemed wasting 
under a premature and unnatural blight! She looked 
at the convent with indifference, though it brought 
relief to her bodily pains. The mountains rose dark 
and rugged near, or glittered in the distance like 
hills of alabaster, without giving birth to a single 
exclamation of that delight, which these scenes are 
known to excite in young breasts; and even the 
pure void above was gazed at, though it seemed to 
invite to a more tranquil existence, with vacuity and 

"Ah s me!" continued Use, whose observation 
rarely penetrated beyond her own feelings, and 
whose tongue was never known to wax weary. 
" Ah s me ! Meta. O ! it must be a wicked world 
that needs all these pilgrimages and burnings. But 
they are only types, child, of the past and of the 
future; of the < has been, and of the to come. 
First, life is a pilgrimage, and a penance ; though 


few of us think so while journeying on its way, but 
so it is to all ; especially to the little favored but a 
penance it is, by means of our ailings and other in 
firmities, particularly in age; and therefore do 1 
bear with it cheerfully, since penances are to be 
borne; and the burnings of convents and villages 
are types of the burnings of the wicked. Thou dost 
not answer, child ?" 

" Dost think, nurse, that they who die by fire are 
blessed !" 

" Of what art speaking, Meta ! Poor Berchthold 
Hintermayer perished, as thou knowest, in the flames 
of Limburg ; so did Father Johan, arid so did one, 
far more evil than either I Oh I I could reveal se 
crets, an I had not a prudent tongue ! But wisdom 
iieth in prudence, and I say naught : therefore, Meta r 
be thou silent." 

" I will obey thee, nurse." 

The tones of the girl trembled, and the smile 
with which she gladly acquiesced in the demand of 
Use, was such as the sinking invalid gives the kind 

" Thou art dutiful, and it is a merit. I never knew 
thee more obedient, and less given to merriment or 
girlish exclamations, than on this very pilgrimage; 
all of which shows that thy mind is in a happy state 
for these holy offices. Well-a-day } the pious A 
nolph has halted, and now we are about, in sooth, to 
reap the virtue of all our labors. Oh ! an I had 
been a monk, thou wouldest have had a leader !" 

Use beat the sides of the patient animal she rode, 
and Meta toiled after, as well as her trembling 
limbs permitted. The Knight and the Abbe came 

" Thou hast made many of these pious expiations, 
reverend Abbe ?" observed the former, when they 
had risen the hill, which commanded a view of the 


" Never another. Had not chance made me an 
r nnocent participator in the destruction of Limburg, 
this indignity would have been spared." 

" How ! callest thou a pilgrimage, and prayer at a 
shrine, an indignity ? thou, a churchman 1" 

" Gallant Knight, I speak to thee as to a comrade 
of many days, and of weary passages ; as one en 
lightened. Thou knowest the constitution of earth, 
and the divers materials that compose society. We 
have doctrines for all ; but practices must be miti 
gated, like medicaments to the sick. Your pilgrim 
age is well enough for the peasant, or the citizen, or 
even for your noble of the Provinces, but their merit 
is much questioned among us of the capitals unless, 
indeed, there should mingle some hope for the future ; 
but penance for deeds accomplished we hold to be 

" By my rapier ! no such doctrine was in vogue 
at Rhodes, where all ordinances were much respect 
ed, and uniformly admitted." 

"And had ye then these familiar practices of re 
ligion in your daily habits, Sir Knight?" 

" I say not in practice ; but ever in admission. 
Thou knowest the distinction, Sir Abbe, between 
the purity of doctrine, and some constructions of 

" That doubtless. Were we to tie the gentle down 
*o all the observances and exactions of a severe 
theory, there would grow up numberless inconve 
niences. For myself, had it been possible to pre 
serve the ecclesiastical character, without penance 
under the odium of this unhappy but accidental visit 
to our host the Count, I could have dispensed with 
the last act of the drama." 

" Tis whispered, Herr Latouche, my cousin be 
thought him, that the presence of an ecclesiastic 
might prove a cloak to his intentions, and that we 


owe the pleasure of thy agreeable society to a 
policy that is deeper than chance !" 

Albrecht of Viederbach laughed, as he intimated 
this ruse of Emich ; and his companion, who had 
long perceived how completely he had been the 
dupe of his host, for in truth he knew nothing pre 
viously of the intended assault, was fain to make 
the best of his situation. He laughed, in his turn, 
as the loose of principle make light of any misad 
venture that may happen to be the consequence of 
their laxity of morals ; and, pressing each other, on 
their several parts in the late events, the two pro 
ceeded leisurely towards the spot where the Prior 
and Emich, as leaders of the party, had now come 
to a halt. We shall profit by the occasion to make 
some necessary explanations. 

We are too much accustomed in this Protestant 
country, to believe, that most of the piety of those 
who profess the religion of Rome consists in exter 
nals. When the great antiquity of this Church 
shall be remembered, as well as the general ten 
dency, in the early ages, to imitate the forms and 
habits of their immediate predecessors, it should not 
occasion surprise if some observances were retain 
ed, that cannot very clearly be referred, either to 
apostolic authority or to reason. The promulgation 
of abstract truth does not necessarily infer a depar 
ture from those practices which have become of 
value by use, even though they may not materially 
assist in the attainment of the great end. We have 
inherited many of the vestments and ceremonies, 
which are retained in the Protestant churches, from 
Pagan priests ; nor is there any sufficient motive for 
abandoning them, so long as they aid the decencies 
of worship, without weakening its real objects. The 
Pagans themselves probably derived some of these 
very practices, from those whom we are taught to 
believe held direct communion with God, and who 


snould have best known in what manner to render 
human adoration most acceptable to the ruler of the 

In this country, Catholicism, in its limited and 
popular meaning, is no longer catholic, since it is in 
so small a minority, as to have no perceptible influ 
ence on the opinions or customs of the country 
The outward symbols, the processions, and all the 
peculiar ceremonies of the Romish Church are con 
fined to the temples, and the eye rarely or never 
meets any evidence of its existence, beyond their 
walls. But in Europe the reverse is altogether the 
case, more particularly in those countries in which 
the spiritual sway of the head of the Church has 
not been interrupted by any adventitious changes, 
proceeding from political revolutions, or otner pow 
erful causes. The crucifix, the spear, the cock, the 
nails, and the sponge, are erected at cross-roads, 
chapels dedicated to Mary are seen near many a 
spring, or at the summit of some weary mountain ; 
while the usual symbols of redemption are found 
scattered along the highways, marking the site of 
some death by accident, or the scene of a murder. 

In no part of the other hemisphere are these evi 
dences of faith and zeal more common, than in the 
Catholic cantons of Switzerland. Hermitages are 
still frequent among the rugged rocks of that region, 
and it is usual to see near these secluded abodes a 
sort of minor chapel, that is termed, in ordinary 
language, a * station. These stations are so many 
tabernacles raised by the way-side, each containing 
a representation of one of the twelve sufferings of 
Christ. They are met equally on the side of Vesu 
vius, overlooking the glorious sea and land, of that 
unequalled country; among the naked wastes of the 
Apennines ; or buried in gorgeous groves ; as acci 
dent may have determined their location. In some 
of the valleys of Switzerland, these little tabernacles 


dot the mountain side for miles, indicating by zig 
zag lines, and white walls, the path that leads from 
the village beneath to some shrine, that is perhaps 
perched on the pinnacle of a naked rock, or which 
stands on a spur of the nearest range. 

The shrine of Einsiedlen possessed the usual num 
ber of these tabernacles, stretching along the path 
that communicated with the Lake of Zurich. They 
were designated in the customary manner ; each al 
luding to some one of those great personal afflic 
tions that preceded the crucifixion, and each having 
sentences of holy writ, to incite the pious to devo 
tion. Here the pilgrims ordinarily commenced the 
worship peculiar to the place, and it was here that 
the Prior now awaited his companions. 


" Was Godde to serche our hcrtes and reines, 
The best were synners grete ; 
Christ s vycarr only knowes ne synne, 
Ynne alle thys mortal! state." 


WHEN all were arrived, the pilgrims divided 
themselves along the path, some kneeling before one 
tabernacle, and some at another. Ulrike and Lott- 
chen, followed by the pallid Meta, prayed long at 
each in succession. The other females imitated 
their example, though evidently with less zeal and 
earnestness. The Knight of Rhodes and Monsieur 
Latouche limited their observances to a few genu 
flexions, and much rapid crossing of themselves with 
the fingers, appearing to think their general profes 
sions of faith possessed a virtue, that superseded the 
necessity of any extraordinary demonstrations of 
piety. Heinrich and the smith were more particular 
in showing respect for the prescribed forms ; the 
matter, who was secretly paid by his townsmen for 


what he did, feeling himself bound in honor to gr r e 
them the worth of their money, and the Burgomas 
ter, in addition to his looking for great tempora 1 
advantages from the whole affair, being much in 
fluenced by paternal regard for Deurckheim. As 
for Use, none was more exact than she ; and, we 
may add, none more ostentatious. 

" Hast bethought thee, Dietrich, to say an extra 
word in behalf of the general interests ?" demanded 
Heinrich, while he patiently awaited the removal of 
the other, from before the last tabernacle, in order 
to assume the post himself. 

" Nay worshipful Burgomaster " 

" Brother Pilgrim, good smith !" 

"Nay, worshipful Brother, and good pilgrim, 
there was no question of this duty in the understand 

" Himmel ! Art such a hound, Dietrich, as to 
need a bribe to pray in thine own interest ? Do 
that thou hast promised, for the penance, and in the 
interest of the monks, and then bethink thee, like an 
honest artisan, of the town of which thou art a citi 
zen. I never rise from my knees without counting 
a few beads on the score of Deurckheim, and others 
for favor on the family of Frey." 

" I cry you mercy, honorable Heinrich and ex 
cellent brother Pilgrim ; the wish is reasonable, and 
it shall be performed." 

The smith then counted off his rosary, making 
place for the Burgomaster as soon as he could con 
veniently get through with the duty. In the mean 
time, Arnolph had prayed devoutly, and with sin 
cere mental abasement, before each station. 

The pilgrims then arranged themselves in two 
lines, a form of approaching the convent of Einsied- 
len that is still observed by thousands annually ; the 
men placing themselves on the right of the path in 
single files, and the females on its left, in a similar 


order. Arnolph walked ahead, and the whole pro 
ceeded. Then began the repetition of the short 
prayers aloud. 

Whoever has wandered much through this remark 
able and wild country, must have frequently met with 
parties of pilgrims, marching in themanner described, 
and uttering their aspirations in the pure air, as they 
ascend to, or descend from, the altar of "our Lady 
of the Snow," on the Rhigi, or wend their way 
among rocky and giddy paths, seeking or returning 
from some other shrine. We know of no display 
of human worship that is more touching or impres 
sive than this. The temple is the most magnificent 
on earth, the air is as limpid as mountain torrents 
and a high region can bestow, while sound is con 
veyed to the ear, in its clearest and most distinct 
tones, aided perhaps by the echoes of dells that are 
nearly unfathomable, or of impending masses that 
appear to prop the skies. Long before the party is 
seen, the ear announces its approach by the music 
of the prayers ; for music it is in such a place, the 
notes alternating regularly between the deep bass 
of the male to the silvery softness of the female 

Such was now the effect produced by the advance 
of our party from the Palatinate. Father Arnolph 
gave the lead, and the powerful lungs of Heinrich 
and the smith, though much restrained, uttered the 
words in tones impressively deep and audible. The 
response of the women was tremulous, soft, and 
soothing. In this manner did they proceed for a 
mile, when they entered the street of the hamlet. 

An express had announced to the community of 
Einsiedlen the approach of the German penitents. 
By a singular perversion of the humble doctrines 
of the founder of the religion, far more importance 
was attached to the expiations and offerings of 
princes, and of nobles of high degree, than to those 


which proceeded from sources that were believed to 
be meaner. All the dwellers of the hamlet, there 
fore, and most of the others that frequented the 
shrine, were abroad to witness this expected pro 
cession. The name of Emich was whispered from 
ear to ear, and many curious eyes sought the form 
of the powerful baron, under the guise common to 
the whole party. By general consent, after much 
speculation, the popular opinion settled on the per 
son of the smith, as on the illustrious penitent; a 
distinction which Dietrich owed to the strength of 
his lungs, to some advantage in stature, and par 
ticularly to the zeal which, as a hireling, he thought 
it just to throw into his air and manner. 

Among the other traditions that serve to give a 
popular celebrity to the shrine of our Lady of the 
Hermits, is one which affirms that, on an occasion 
it is unnecessary to relate, the Son of God, in the 
form of main, visited this favored shrine. He is 
said to have assuaged his thirst at the fountain 
which flows, with Swiss purity and profusion, before 
the door of the building ; and as the clear element 
has been made to run through different metal tubes, 
it is a custom of the Pilgrims, as they arrive, to 
drink a hasty swallow at each, in order to obtain 
the virtue of a touch so revered. There was also 
a plate of silver, that had marks which were said 
to have been left by the fingers of Jesus, and to 
these it was the practice to apply the hand. The 
former usage is still universal ; though modern cu 
pidity has robbed the temple of the latter evidence 
of the reputed visit, in consequence of the value of 
the metal which bore its memorial. 

Arnolph halted at the fountain, and, slowly making 
its circuit, drank at each spout. He was followed 
by all of his companions. But he passed the silver 
plate, and entered the building, praying aloud until 
his foot was on the threshold. Without stopping 


he advanced and knelt on the cold stones before the 
shrine, fastening his eye the whle on the carved 
image of Mary. The others imitated his move 
ments, and, in a few minutes, all were kneeling 
before the far-famed chapel of the Divine Conse 

The ancient church of Einsiedlen (for the building 
has since been replaced by another still larger and 
more magnificent) had been raised around the spot 
where the cell of Saint Meinard originally stood. 
The chapel reputed to have been consecrated by 
angels, was in this revered cell, and the whole stood 
in the centre of the more modern edifice. It was 
small, in comparison with the pile which held it, but 
of sufficient size to admit of an officiating priest, 
and to contain many rich offerings of the pious. 
The whole was encased in marble, blackened by 
time and the exhalations of lamps ; while the front, 
and part of the sides, permitted a view of the inte 
rior, through openings that were protected by gra 
tings curiously and elaborately wrought. 

In the farther and dark extremity of this sacred 
chapel, were the images of the Mother and Child. 
Their dresses, as is usual at all much-worshipped 
shrines, were loaded with precious stones and plates 
of gold. The face of each had a dark and bronzed 
color, resembling the complexion of the far east, 
but which probably is a usage connected with the 
association of an origin and destiny that are super 
human. The whole was illuminated by strong lights, 
in lamps of silver-gilt, and the effect, to a mind in 
disposed to doubt, was impressive, and of a singu 
larly mysterious influence. Such was the shrine of 
our Lady of the Hermits at the time of our tale, 
and such it continues to be to this day, with some 
immaterial additions and changes, that are more the 
results of time than of opinion. 

We have visited this resort of Catholic devotion 


n that elevated region of hill and frost ; have stroll 
ed, near the close of day, among its numerous and 
decorated chapels ; have seen the bare-kneed pea 
sant of the Black Forest, the swarthy Hungarian, 
the glittering-eyed Piedmontese, and the fair-haired 
German, the Tyrolese, and the Swiss, arrive, in 
groups, wearied and foot-sore ; have watched them 
drinking with holy satisfaction at the several spouts, 
and, having followed them to the front of the altar, 
have wondered at the statue-like immovability with 
which they have remained kneeling, without chang 
ing their gaze from that of the unearthly looking 
image that seemed to engross their souls. Curiosity 
led us to the spot alone, and at no moment of a pil 
grimage in foreign lands, that has now extended to 
years, do we remember to have felt so completely 
severed from all to which we were most accustom 
ed, as at that hour. The groups arrived in scores, 
and, without pausing to exchange a greeting, with 
out thought of lodging or rest, each hurried to the 
shrine, where he seemed embodied with the stone 
of the pavement, as, with riveted eye and abased 
mien, he murmured the first prayers of expiation 
before the image of Mary. But to return to the 

For the first hour after the arrival of the expected 
pilgrims of Deurckheim, not a sign of recognition, 
or of grace, was manifested in the convent. The 
officials came and went, as if none but of common 
character made their expiations ; and the fixed eye 
and swarthy face of the image seemed to return 
each steady gaze, with supernatural tranquillity. At 
length Arnolph arose, and, as if his movements were 
watched, a bell rang in a distant aisle. A lateral 
door, which communicated with the conventual 
buildings, opened, and the whole brotherhood issued 
through it into the body of the church. Arnolph 
immediately kneeled again, and, by a sign, com 


manded his companions to maintain their places. 
Though grievously wearied with their positions, the 
men complied, but neither of the females had yet 

The Benedictines of Einsiedlen entered the church 
in the order that has been already described in th 
processions of Limburg. The junior monks cam 
first, and the dignitaries last. In that age, thei 
Abbot was commonly of a noble and ancient, and 
sometimes of a princely house; for, in maintaining 
its influence, the Church has rarely been known to 
overlook the agency of those opinions and prejudices 
that vulgarly exist among men. In every case, 
nowever, the prelate who presided over this favored 
community, possessed, in virtue of his office, the lat 
ter temporal distinction; being created a mitred 
Abbot, and a Prince of the Empire, on the day of 
his consecration. 

During the slow advance of the long line of monks, 
that now drew near the shrine, there was a chant 
in the loft, and the deep organ accompanied the 
words, on a low key. Even Albrecht and the Abbe 
were much impressed, while Emich fairly trembled, 
like one that had unwittingly committed himself into 
the hands of his enemies. 

The head of the train swept round the little 
chapel, and passed with measured steps before the 
pilgrims. The Prior and the females only prayed 
the more devoutly, but neither the Count nor the 
Burgomaster could prevent their truant eyes from 
watching the movement. Dietrich, little schooled in 
his duties, fairly arose, and stood repeating rever 
ences to the whole fraternity, as it passed. When 
the close drew near, Emich endeavored to catch a 
glance of the Abbot s eyes, hoping to exchange one 
of those secret signs of courtesy, with which the 
initiated, in every class of life, know how to express 
their sympathies. To his confusion, and slightly to 


his uneasiness, he saw the well-known countenance 
of Bonifacius, at the side of the dignitary who pre 
sided over the brotherhood of Einsiedlen. The 
glances of these ancient and seemingly irreconci 
lable rivals, were such as might have been antici 
pated. That of Bonifacius was replete with religious 
pride, and a resentment that was at least moment 
arily gratified ; though it still retained glimmerings 
of conscious defeat; while that of Emich was 
fierce, mortified, and alarmed, all in a moment. 

But the train swept on, and it was not long ere 
the music announced the presence of the procession 
in the choir. Then Arriolph again arose, and, fol 
lowed by all the pilgrims, he drew near to listen to 
^he vespers. After the prayers, the usual hymn was 

" Himmel ! master brother Pilgrim," whispered 
the smith to the Burgomaster, "that should be a 
voice known to all of Deurckheim !" 

" Umph !" ejaculated Heinrich, who sought the 
/e of Emich. " These Benedictines sing much in 
le same strain, Herr Emich, whether it be in Lim- 
burg, or here in the church of our Lady of the 

" By my fathers ! master Frey, but thou sayest 
true ! To treat thee as a confidant, I little like this 
intimate correspondence between the Abbots, and, 
least of all, to see the reverend Bonifacius enthroned 
here, in this distant land, much as he was wont to 
be in our valley. I fear me, Burgomaster, that we 
have entered lightly on this penance !" 

" If you can say this, well-born Emich, what 
should be the reply of one that hath wife and child, 
in addition to his own person, in the risk? It would 
have been better to covet less of Heaven, the least 
portion of which must naturally be better than the 
best of that to w r hich we are accustomed on earth, 
and to be satisfied with the advantages we have 


Do you note, noble Count, the friendly manner in 
which Bonifacius regards us, from time to time ?" 

" His favors do not escape me, Heinrich ; but 
peace ! we shall learn more, after the vespers are 

Then came the soothing power of that remarkable 
voice. The singer had been presented to the con 
vent of Einsiedlen, by Bonifacius, to whom he was 
now useless, as a boon that was certain to give him 
great personal favor: and so it had proved; for in 
those communities, that passed their lives in the ex 
ercise of the offices of the Church, the different 
shades of excellence in the execution, or the greater 
external riches and decorations of their several 
shrines, often usurped the place of a nobler strife in 
zeal and self-denial. The ceremony now ended, and 
a brother approaching whispered Father Arnolph. 
The latter proceeded to the sacristy, attended by 
the pilgrims, for it was forbidden, even to the trem 
bling Meta, to seek refreshment or rest, until another 
important duty had been performed. 

The sacristy was empty, and they awaited still 
in silence, while the music of the organ announced 
the retiring procession of the monks. After some 
delay, a door opened, and the Abbot of Einsiedlen, 
accompanied by Bonifacius, appeared. They were 
alone, with the exception of the treasurer of the 
Abbey ; and as the place was closed, the interview 
that now took place, was no longer subject to the 
vulgar gaze. 

" Thou art Emich, Count of Hartenburg-Leinin- 
gen," said the prelate, distinguishing the noble, spite 
of his mean attire, by a single glance of an eye ac 
customed to scan its equals ; " a penitent at our 
shrine, for wrongs done the Church, and for dishonor 
to God?" 

" I am Emich of Leiningen, holy Abbot !" 

"Dost thou disclaim the obligation to be here? 


"And a penitent; " the words "for being here" 
being bitterly added, in a mental reservation. 

The Abbot regarded him sternly, for he disliked 
the reluctance of his tongue. Taking Bonifacius 
apart, they consulted together for a few minutes ; 
then returning to the group of pilgrims, he resumed 

" Thou art now in a land that listeneth to no here 
sies, Herr von Hartenburg ; and it would be wel 
to remember thy vow, and thy object. Hast thou 
aught to say ?" 

Emich slowly undid his scrip, and sought his 
offerings among its scanty contents. 

"This crucifix was obtained by a noble of my 
house, when a crusader. It is of jasper, as thou 
seest, reverend Abbot, and it is not otherwise want 
ing in valuable additions." 

The Abbot bowed, in the manner of one indiffer 
ent to the richness of the boon, signing to the trea 
surer to accept the gift. There was then a brief 

"This censer was the gift of a noble far less 
possessed than thee !" said he who kept the treasures 
of the Abbey, with an emphasis that could not easily 
be mistaken. 

" Thy zeal outstripped the limbs of a weary man, 
brother. Here is a diamond, that hath been heir 
loom of my house, a century. T was an emperor s 

" It is well bestowed on our Lady of the Her 
mits ; though she can boast of far richer offerings 
from names less known than thine." 

Emich now hesitated, but only for an instant, 
and then laid down another gift. 

" This vessel is suited to thy offices," he said, 
" being formed for the altar s services." 

" Lay the cup aside ;" sternly and severely inter 
rupted Bonifacius: "it coroeth of Limburg !" 


Emich colored, more in anger than in shame, 
however, for in that age plunder was one of the 
speediest and most used means of acquiring wealth, 
He eyed the merciless Abbot, fiercely, but without 

" I have no more," he said ; " the wars the 
charges of my house and gold given the routed 
brotherhood, have left me poor !" 

The treasurer turned to Heinrich, with an elo 
quent expression of countenance. 

" Thou wilt remember, master Treasurer, that 
there is no longer any question of a powerful baron," 
said the Burgomaster, "but that the littie I have to 
give, cometh of a poor and saddled town. First 
we offer our wishes and our prayers, secondly, we 
present, in all humility, and with the wish they may 
prove acceptable, these spoons, which may be of 
use in some of thy many ceremonies, thirdly, this 
candlestick, which though small is warranted to be 
of pure gold, by jewellers of Frankfort : and lastly, 
this cord, with which seven of our chief men have 
grievously and loyally scourged themselves, in re 
paration of the wrong done thy brethren." 

All these offerings were graciously received, and 
the monk turned to the others. It is unnecessary to 
repeat the different donations that were made by 
the inferiors, who came from the castle and the 
town. That of Gottlob was, or pretended to be, 
the offending horn, which had so irreverently been 
sounded near the altar of Limburg, and a piece of 
gold. The latter was the identical coin he had ob 
tained from Bonifacius, in the interview which led 
to his arrest ; and the other was a cracked instru 
ment, that the roguish cow-herd had often essayed 
among his native hills, without the least success. 
In after life, when the spirit of religious party grew 
bolder, he often boasted of the manner in which lit 


had tricked the Benedictines by bestowing an in 
strument so useless. 

Ulrike made her offering, with sincere and meek 
penitence. It consisted of a garment for the image 
of the Virgin, which had been chiefly wrought by 
her own fair hands, and on which the united tributes 
of her townswomen had been expended, in the way 
of ornaments, and in stones of inferior price. The 
gift was graciously received; for the community 
had been well instructed in the different characters 
of the various penitents. 

" Hast thou aught in honor of Maria ?" demanded 
the treasurer of Lottchen. 

The widowed and childless woman endeavored 
to speak, but her power failed her. She laid upon 
the table, however, a neatly bound and illuminated 
missal; a cap that seemed to have no particular 
value, except its tassel of gold and green, and a 
hunting horn ; all of which, with many others of the 
articles named, had made part of the load borne on 
the furniture of the ass. 

" These are unusual gifts at our shrine !" muttered 
the monk. 

" Reverend Benedictine," interrupted Ulrike, 
nearly breathless in the generous desire to avert 
pain from her friend, " they are extorted from her 
who gives, like drops of blood from the heart. This 
is Lottchen Hintermayer, of whom thou hast doubt 
less heard ?" 

The name of Lottchen Hintermayer had never 
reached the treasurer s ear ; but the sweet and per 
suasive manner of Ulrike prevailed. The monk 
bowed, and he seemed satisfied. The next that ad 
vanced was Meta. The Benedictines all appeared 
truck by the pallid color of her cheek, and the va 
cant, hopeless, expression of an eye that had lately 
been so joyous. 

" The journey hath been hard upon our daugh- 


ter !" said the princely Abbot, with gentleness and 

" She is young, reverend Father," answered Ul- 
rike ; " but God will temper the wind to the shorr 

The Abbot looked surprised, for the tones of the 
mother met his ear with an appeal as touching as 
that of the worn countenance of the girl. 

" Is she thy child, good pilgrim T 9 

" Father, she is Heaven make me grateful, for 
its blessed gift !" 

Another gaze from the wondering priest, and he 
gave place to the treasurer, who advanced to receive 
the offering. The frame of Meta trembled violently, 
and she placed a hand to her bosom. Drawing forth 
a paper, she laid it simply before the monk, who 
gazed at it in wonder. 

" What is this ?" he asked. " It is the image of a 
youth, rudely sketched !" 

" It meaneth, Father," half whispered Ulrike, 
" that the heart which loved him, now belongs to 
God !" 

The Abbot bowed, hastily signing to the inferior 
to accept the offering; and he walked aside to con 
ceal a tear that started to his eye. Meta at that 
moment fell upon her mother s breast, and was borne 
silently from the sacristy. 

The men followed, and, with a single exception, 
the two Abbots and the Treasurer were now left 

" Hast thou an offering, good woman ?" demanded 
the latter of the female who remained. 

" Have I an offering, Father ! Dost think I would 
come thus far with an empty hand ? I am Use, Frau 
Frey s nurse, that Deurckheim hath sent on this pil 
grimage, as an offering in herself; and such it truly 
is for frail bones, and threescore and past. We are 
but poor town s-people of the Palatinate, but then 


we know what is available at need! There are 
many reasons why I should come, as thou shalt hear. 
Firstly, I was in Limburg church, when the deed 

" How ! did one of thy years go forth on such an 
expedition ?" 

" Ay, and on many other expeditions. Firstly, I 
was with the old Burgomaster, Frau Ulrike s father 
when there was succor sent to Mannheim ; secondly, 
I beheld, from our hills, the onset between the Elec 
tor s men, and the followers of" 

" Dost thou serve the mother of yonder weeping 
girl ?" demanded the Abbot, cutting short the history 
of Use s campaigns. 

" And the weeping girl herself, reverend, and holy 
and princely Abbot, and, if thou wilt, the Burgo 
master too , for, at times, in sooth, I serve the whole 
family " 

" Canst thou repeat the history of ner sorrow?" 

" Naught easier, my lord and Abbot. Firstly, is 
she youthful, and that is an age when we grieve or 
are gladdened with little reason ; then she is an only 
child, which is apt to weaken the spirit by indul 
gence ; next, she is fair, which often tempts the 
heart into various vanities, and, doubtless, into sor 
row, among the others ; then is she foot-sore, a bit 
ter grief of itself; and, finally, she hath much re 
pentance for this nefarious sin, of which we are not 
yet purged, and which, unless pardoned, may descend 
to her, among other bequests from her father." 

" It is well. Deposit thy gift, and kneel that I may 
bless thee." 

Use did as ordered, after which she withdrew, 
making many reverences in the act. 

As the door closed on the crone, Bonifacius and 
his brother Abbot quitted the place in company 
leaving the monk charged with that duty, to care 
for the wealth that had been so liberally added to 
the treasury of Einsiedlen. 



" Israel, are these men 

The mighty hearts you spoke of?" 


THERE was little resemblance in the characters 
of the two prelates, beyond that which was the cer 
tain consequence of their common employment. If 
Bonifacius was the most learned, of the strongest 
intellectual gifts, and, in other particulars relating to 
the mind, of the higher endowments, the princely 
Abbot of Einsiedlen had more of those gentle and 
winning qualities which best adorn the Christian 
life. Perhaps neither was profoundly and meekly 
pious, for this was not easy to men surrounded by 
so many inducements to flatter their innate weak 
nesses : but both habitually respected the outward 
observances of their Church ; and both, in degrees 
proportioned to the boldness and sagacity of their 
respective intellects, yielded faith to the virtue of its 

On quitting the sacristy, they proceeded through 
the cloisters, to the abode of the chief of the com 
munity. Here, closeted together, there was a con 
sultation concerning their further proceedings. 

" Thou wert of near neighborhood," said he of 
our Lady of the Hermits, "to this hardy baron, 
Brother Bonifacius ?" 

" As thou mayest imagine by the late events. 
There lay but a few arrow s flights between his 
castle and our unhappy walls." 

" Had ye good understanding of old, or cometh 
the present difficulty from long-standing grievances?" 

" Thou art happy, pious Rudiger, to be locked, as 
you are, among your frosts and mountains, beyond 
the reach of noble s arm, and beyond the desires of 
noble s ambition. Limburg and the craving Counts 


ii*ve scarce known peace since our Abbey s found 
ation. Your unquiet baron fills some such agency, 
,n respect to our religious communities, as that 
which the unquiet spirit of the Father of Sin occu 
pies in the moral world." 

" And yet, I doubt that the severest blow we are 
to receive will come from one of ourselves ! If all that 
rumor and missives from the Bishops reveal, be true, 
this schism of Luther promises us a lasting injury!" 

Bonifacius, whose mind penetrated the future 
much farther than most of his brethren possessed 
the means of doing, heard this remark gloomily; 
ind he sat brooding over the pictures which a keen 
magination presented, while his companion watched 
the play of his massive features, with intuitive 

" Thou art right, princely Abbot," the former at 
length replied. " To us, both the future and the past 
are filled with lessons of deep instruction, could we 
but turn them to present advantage. All that we 
know of earth shows that each physical thing re 
turns to its elements, when the object of its creation 
has been accomplished. The tree helps to pile tho 
earth which once nourished its roots; the rock 
crumbles to the sand of which it was formed ; and 
even man turns to that dust which was animated 
that he might live. Can we then expect that our 
Abbeys, or that even the Church itself, in its present 
temporal organization, will stand for ever ?" 

" Thou hast done well to qualify thy words by 
saying temporal, good Bonifacius, for if the body 
decays, the soul remains ; and the essence of our 
communion is in its spiritual character." 

" Hearken, right reverend and noble Rudiger 
Go ask of Luther the niceties of h : s creed on this 
point, and he will tell thee, that he is a believer in 
the transmigration of souls that he keepeth this 
spiritual character, but in a new dress ; and that, 


while he consigns the ancient body to the tomb, he 
only lightens the imperishable part of a burthen that 
has grown too heavy to be borne." 

" But this is rank rebellion to authority, and flat 
refusal of doctrine !" 

" Of the former, there can be no question ; and, 
as to our German regions, most seem prepared to 
incur its risks. In respect to doctrine, learned Ru- 
diger, you now broach a thesis which resembles 
the bells in your convent towers on which there 
may be rung endless changes, from the simple chime 
to a triple-bob-major." 

" Nay, reverend Bonifacius, thou treatest a grave 
subject with irreverent levity. If we are to tolerate 
these innovations, there is an end of discipline ; and 
I marvel that a dignified priest should so esteem 
them !" 

" Thou dost me injustice, Brother ; for what I 
urge is said in befitting seriousness. The ingenuity 
of man is so subtle, and his doubts, once engaged, 
so restless, that when the barrier of discipline is 
raised, I know DO conclusion for which a clever 
head may not find a reason. Has it never struck 
thee, reverend Rudiger, that a great error hath been 
made from the commencement, in founding all our 
ordinances to regulate society, whether they be oi 
religious or of mere temporal concerns?" 

" Thou asketh this of one who hath been accus 
tomed to think of his superiors with respect." 

" I touch not on our superiors, nor on their per 
sona 1 qualities. What I would say is, that our the 
ories are too often faulty, inasmuch as they are 
made to suit former practices ; whereas, in a well- 
ordered world, methin-ks the theory should come 
first, and the usage follow as a consequence of 
suitable conclusions." 

" This might have done for him who possessed 
Eden, but those who came after were compelled tc 


receive things as they were, and to turn them to 
profit as they might." 

" Brother and princely Abbot, thou hast grappled 
with the dilemma ! Could we be placed in the oc 
cupancy of this goodly heritage, untrammelled by 
previously endeared interests, seeing the truth, 
naught would be easier than to make practice con 
form to theory ; but, being that we are, priest and 
noble, saint and sinner, philosopher and worldling, 
why, look you, the theory is driven to conform to 
the necessities of practice ; and hence doctrine, at 
the best, is but a convertible authority. As a Bene 
dictine, and a lover of Rome, I would that Luther 
had been satisfied with mere changes in habits, for 
these may be accommodated to climates and preju 
dices; but when the flood-gates of discussion are 
raised, no man can say to what extent, or in what 
direction, the torrent will flow." 

" Thou hast little faith, seemingly, in the quality 
of reason]" 

Bonifacius regarded his companion a moment 
with an ill-concealed sneer. 

" Surely, holy Rudiger," he gravely replied, " thou 
hast not so long governed thy fellows to put this 
question to me ! Hadst thou said passion, we might 
right quickly come to an understanding. The corol 
laries of our animal nature follow reasonably enough 
from the proposition ; but when we quit the visible 
land-marks of the species, to launch upon the ocean 
of speculation, we commit ourselves, like the mari 
ner who trusts his magnet, to an unknown cause. 
He that is a-hungered will eat, and he that is pained 
will roar; he that hath need of gold will rob, in 
some shape or other ; and he that loveth his ease 
may prefer quiet to trouble : all this may be calcu 
lated, with other inferences that follow ; but if thou 
wilt tell me what course the Lammergeyer will take 


when he hath soared beyond the Alps, I will teti 
thee the direction in which the mind of man wiL 
steer, when fairly afloat on the sea of speculation 
and argument." 

" The greater the necessity that it should be held 
n the wholesome limits of discipline and doctrine." 

" Were doctrine like our convent walls, all would 
oe well; but being what it is, men become what 
they are." 

" How ! Dost thou account faith for naught ? I 
have heard there were brothers of deep piety in 
Limburg. Father Johan, who perished in defence 
of thy altars, may go near to be canonized to say 
nothing of the excellent Prior, who is here among 
us on this pilgrimage." 

" I count faith for much, excellent brother ; and 
happy is he who can satisfy uneasy scruples by so 
pleasant an expedient. Brother Johan may be can 
onized, if our Father of Rome shall see fit, here 
after, and the fallen Limburg will have reason to 
exult in its member. Still I do not see that the un 
happy Johan proveth aught against the nature of 
doctrine, for, had he been possessed of less pertina 
city in certain of his opinions, he would have es 
caped the fate which befell him." 

" Is martyrdom a lot to displease a Christian ? 
Bethink thee of the Fathers, and of their ends !" 

" Had Johan bethought him more of their fortunes, 
his own might have been different. Reverend Ab 
bot, Johan hath long ceased to be a riddle to me; 
though I deny not his utility with the peasant and 
the fervent. But him thou hast last mentioned" 
here Bonifacius leaned a cheek on his hand, and 
spoke like one that was seriously perplexed " him 
thou namedst last the sincere, and wise, and sim 
ple Arnolph, have I never truly comprehended ! 
That man appeareth equally contented in his eel r 


.n his stall ; honored equally in his office, and on this 
weary pilgrimage ; whether in prosperity or in mis 
fortune, he is ever at peace with himself and with 
others. Here is truly a man that no reasoning of 
mine hath been able to fathom. He is not ambitious, 
for thrice hath he refused the mitre ! He is sustain 
ed by no wild visions or deceitful fantasies, like the 
unhappy Johan ; nor yet is he indifferent to any of 
the more severe practices of his profession, all of 
which are observed quietly, and seemingly with 
satisfaction. He is learned, without the desire of dis 
cussion ; meek, amid a firmness that would despise 
the stake ; and forgiving to a degree that might 
lead us to call him easy, but for a consistency that 
never seemeth to yield to any influence of season, 
events, or hopes. Truly, this is a man that baffleth 
all my knowledge !" 

Bonifacius, in despite of his acquirements, his 
masculine intellect, and his acquaintance with men, 
did not perceive how much he admitted against 
himself, by expressing his own inability to fathom 
the motives of the Prior. Nor did the enigma ap 
pear to be perfectly intelligible to his companion, 
who listened curiously to the other s description of 
their brother ; much as we hearken to a history of 
inexplicable or supernatural incidents. 

" I have heard much of Arnolph," observed the 
latter, " though never matter so strange as this ; 
and yet most seem to love him !" 

" Therein is his power i though often most op 
posed to me, I cannot say that I myself am indiffer 
ent to the man By our patron saint ! I sometimes 
fain believe I love him ! He was among the last t 
desert our altars, when pressed by this rapaciou 
noble, and his credulous and silly burghers ; and yet 
was he foremost to forgive the injury when commit- 
ed. But for him, and his high influence with the 


Bishops, there might have been blows for blows 
spite of this schism that hath turned so many ii 
Germany from our support." 

"And since thou speakest of the schism, in wha 
manner dost thou account for an innovation so hardy, 
in a region that is usually esteemed reasonable? 
There must have been relaxation of authority ; foi 
there is no expedient so certain to prevent heresies, 
or errors of doctrine, as a Church well established, 
and which is maintained by fitting authority." 

Bonifacius smiled, for even in that early age, his 
penetrating mind saw the fallacy to which the other 
was a dupe. 

" This is well when there is right ; but when there 
is error, brother, your established authority does but 
uphold it. The provisions that are made in thy com 
fortable abode to keep the cold air out, may be the 
means of keeping foul air within." 

" In this manner of reasoning, troth can have no 
existence ! Thou dreadest doctrine, and thou wilt 
naught of discipline !" 

" Nay, holy Rudiger, in the latter thou greatly 
misconceiveth me. Of discipline I would have all 
that is possible ; I merely deny that it is any pledge 
of truth. We are apt to say that a well-ordained 
and established Church is the buttress of truth, when 
experience plainly showeth that this discipline doeth 
more harm to truth, than it can ever serve it. and 
that simply because there can be but one truth, 
while there are many modes of discipline; many 
establishments therefore uphold many errors, or truth 
hath no identity with itself." 

" Thou surprisest me ! Whatever may come of 
this heresy, as yet, I know of but one assault on oui 
supremacy ; and that cometh of error, as we rom 
of right." 

" This is well for Christendom, but what sayeth il 


"or your Moslem your fire-worshipper your Hin 
doo your Pag-an, and all the rest; any one of 
whom is just as ready to keep out error by disci 
pline, as we of Rome ? Until now, certainly among 
Christians this evil hath not often happened, though 
even we are not without our differences : but look 
ing to this advance of the printing art, and of the 
variety of opinions that are its fruits, I foresee that 
we are to have many opposing expedients, all of 
which will be equally well pondered and concocted 
to keep in truth, and to exclude error. This preten 
sion of high authority, and of close exactions to 
maintain purity of doctrine, and what we deem 
truth, is well, as the jurists say, quoad hoc; but 
touching the general question, I do not see its virtue. 
Now that men enlist with passion in these spiritual 
discussions, we may look to see various modifica 
tions of the Church, all of which will be more or 
less buttressed by human expedients, as so many 
preservatives of truth; but when the time shall 
come that countries and communities are divided 
among themselves on these subtleties, look you, ex 
cellent Rudiger, we may expect to shut in as much 
error by our laws and establishments, as we shall 
shut out. I fear heaven is a goal that must be 
reached by a general mediation, leaving each to 
give faith to the minor points of doctrine, according 
to his habits and abilities." 

" This savors more of the houseless Abbot than 
of him who lately had an obedient and flourishing 
brotherhood !" Rudiger somewhat piquantly rejoined. 

Bonifacius was unmoved by the evident allusion, 
egarding his companion coolly, and like a man who 
too well knew his own superiority easily to take of- 
"ence. His reply, however, would probably have 
been a retort, notwithstanding this seeming modera 
tion, had not a door opened, and Arnolph quietly 
entered the room. 



The reception of the Prior, by his two mitred 
brethren, proved the deep respect which had so 
universally been won by his self-denying qualities. 
In the great struggle of the conflicting egotism 
which composes, in a great degree, the principle 
of most of the actions of this uneasy world, no one 
s so likely to command universal esteem, as he who 
appears willing to bear the burthen of life, with as 
little as possible of its visible benefits, by withdraw 
ing himself from the arena of its contentions. In 
the great mass, an occasional retreat from the strug 
gle, on the part of those who have few means of 
success, creates but little feeling of any sort, per 
haps ; but when he that hath undeniable pretensions 
exhibits this forbearance, he may be certain of ob 
taining full credit for all that he possesses, and more, 
even to the admission of qualifications that would 
be vehemently denied had he taken a different atti 
tude, in respect to his rivals. Such was, in some 
measure, the position of Father Arnolph ; and Boni- 
facius himself never struggled to resist his natural 
impulses towards the pious monk, having a secret 
persuasion that none of his virtues, however publicly 
proclaimed, were likely to militate against his own 

" Thou art much wearied, holy Prior," said the 
Abbot of Einsiedlen, offering a seat to his visitor, 
with assiduous and flattering attention. 

" I count it not, princely Rudiger ; having light 
ened the way with much good discourse, and many 
prayers : my pilgrims are faint, but, happily arrived, 
they are now fairly committed to the convent s 

" Thou hast with thee, reverend Arnolph, a noble 
of high esteem in thy German country?" 

" Of ancient blood, and of great worldly credit," 
returned the Prior, with reserve. 


"What thinkest thou, brother Bonifacius ? It 
nay not be prudent to make any very public mani 
festations of a difference of treatment, between 
those who seek our shrine ; but do not hospitality, 
and such courtesy as marketh our own breeding, 
demand some private greetings. Is my opinion 
suitable, worthy Arnolph V 9 

" God is no respecter of persons, Abbot of Ein- 

" Can any know this better than ourselves ? 
But we pretend not to perfection, nor can our judg 
ments be set up as decisive of men s merits, farther 
than belongs to our office. Ours is an hospitable 
order, and we are privileged to earn esteem, and 
therefore doth it appear to me not only becoming 
but politic to show a noble of this repute, and at a 
moment when heresy runs mad, that we do not 
overlook the nature of his sacrifices. Thou art 
silent, Brother Abbot !" 

The Abbot of Limburg listened with secret satis 
faction, for he had views of his own that the pro 
posal favored. He was therefore about to give a 
ready assent, when Arnolph interrupted him. 

" I have nobles among my followers, right rever 
end Abbots," said the latter earnestly; "and I have 
those that deserve to be more than noble, if deep 
Christian humility can claim to be so esteemed. I 
did not come to speak of Emich of Hartenburg, 
but of spirits sorely bruised, and to beg of thee, in 
their behalf, a boon of churchly offices." 

"Name it, father, and make certain of its fail 
reception. But it is now late, and no rites of the 
morrow need defeat our intentions of honest hos 

" They, in ^vhose behalf I would speak," said 
Arnolph, with apparent mortification, " are already 
without; if admitted, they may best explain then 
own desires." 


The Abbot signified a ready assent to receive 
these visitors, and the Prior hastened to admit them 
anticipating a wholesome effect on the minds of hi? 
superiors from the interview. When he reappeared, 
he was followed by Ulrike, Lottchen, and Meta 
who came after him in the order named. Both the 
Abbots seemed surprised, for it exceeded their con 
fidence in themselves to admit visitors of that sex, 
at an hour so equivocal, in the more retired parts of 
the buildings, and they counted little on the boldness 
of innocence. 

" This exceedeth usage !" exclaimed the superior 
of Einsiedlen. " It is true, we have our privileges, 
pious Arnolph, but they are resorted to with great 

" Fear not, holy Abbot," Arnolph calmly answered; 
" this visit may at least claim to be as harmless as 
that of those thou hast just named. Speak, virtuous 
Ulrike, that thy wishes may be known." 

Ulrike crossed herself, first casting a tearful eye 
on the pallid and depressed countenances of her 
daughter and of her friend. 

" We are come to your favored shrine, princely 
and pious Abbot," she slowly commenced, like one 
who feared the effects of her own words, " penitents, 
pilgrims, and acknowledging our sins, in order to 
expiate a great wrong, and to implore Heaven s 
pardon. The accomplishment of our wishes hath 
been promised by the Church, and by one greater 
than the Church, should we bring with us contrite 
hearts. In this behalf, then, we have now little to 
offer, since our pious guide, the beloved and instruct- 
ed Arnolph, hath taught us to omit HO observance 
nor hath he, in any particular, left us ignorant of the 
state of mind that best befitteth our present under 
taking. But, right reverend Abbot " 

" Proceed, daughter ; thou wilt find all here ready 


to listen," said Rudiger kindly, observing that her 
words became choked, and that she continued to 
cast uneasy looks at Lottchen and Meta. The voice 
of the speaker sank, but her tones were still more 
earnest, as she continued. 

" Holy Benedictine, aided by Heaven s kindness, I 
will. In all that toucheth our pilgrimage and its 
duties, we confide entirely to the pious counsel of 
the learned and godly Arnolph, and he will tell you 
that naught material hath by us been neglected. We 
have prayed, and confessed, and fasted, and done 
the needed expiations, in a meek mood, and with 
contrite hearts. We come then to ask a service of 
this favored community, which, we trust, may not 
be refused to the Christian." 

The Abbot looked surprised, but he awaited her 
own time to continue. 

" It hath pleased Heaven to call away one dear 
to us, at a short summons," proceeded Ulrike, not 
without casting another fearful glance at her com 
panions ; " and we would ask the powerful prayers 
of the community of our Lady of the Hermits, in 
behalf of his soul." 

" Of what age was the deceased ?" 

God summoned him, reverend Abbot, in early 

" By what means did he come to his end ?" 

" By a sudden display of Heaven s power." 

" Died he at peace with God and the Church ?" 

"Father, his end was sudden and calamitous. 
None can know the temper of the mind at that aw 
ful moment." 

" But did he live in the practices of our faith? 
Thou comest of a region in which there is much 
heresy, and this is an hour in which the shepherd 
cannot desert the fold." 

Ulrike paused, for the breathing of her friend was 
thick and audible. 

2L 2 


" Princely Abbot, he was a Christian. I held him 
myself at the font. This humble penitent and pil 
grim gave him birth, and to this holy Prior hath he 
often confessed." 

The Abbot greatly disliked the manner of the an 
swers. His brow drew over the eyes, and he turned 
jealous glances from Arnolph to the females. 

" Canst thou vouch for thy penitent ?" he demand 
ed abruptly of the Prior. 

" His soul hath need of masses." 

" Was he tainted with the heresy of the times ?" 

Arnolph paused. His mind underwent a severe 
struggle, for, while he distrusted the opinions of 
Berchthold, he knew nothing that a scrupulous and 
conscientious judge could fairly construe into un 
equivocal evidence of his dereliction from the 

" Thou dost not answer, Prior !" 

" God hath not gifted me with knowledge to judge 
the secret heart." 

" Ha ! this grows plainer. Reverend Bonifacius, 
canst thou say aught of this ?" 

The dethroned Abbot of Limburg had, at first, 
listened to the dialogue with indifference. There 
had even been an ironical smile on his lips while Ul- 
rike was speaking, but when Arnolph was question 
ed, it disappeared in an active and a curious desire 
to know in what manner a man so conscientious 
would extricate himself from the dilemma. Thus 
directly questioned, however, he found himself 
obliged to become a party in the discourse. 

" I well know, princely and pious Rudiger, that 
heresy is rife in our misguided Palatinate," he an 
swered ; " else would not the Abbot of Limburg be 
a houseless guest in Einsiedlen." 

" Thou hearest, daughter ! The youth is suspected 
of having died, an enemy of the Church." 


"The greater the errors, if this he true, the greater 
the need that prayers be offered for his soul." 

" This would be truly aiding Lucifer in his designs 
to overturn our tabernacles, and a weakness not to 
be indulged. I am grieved to be compelled to show 
this discipline to one of thy seeming zeal, but oui 
altars cannot be defiled by sacrifices in behalf of 
those who despise them. Was the youth connected 
with the fall of Limburg ?" 

" Father, he died in the crush of its roofs," said 
Ulrike, in nearly inaudible syllables ; " and we deem 
the manner of his end another reason why extraor 
dinary masses should be said in his behalf" 

" Thou askest an impossibility. Were we to yield 
to our pity, in these cases of desperate heresies, it 
would discourage the faithful, and embolden those 
who are already too independent." 

" Father !" said a tremulous and low, but eager 

" What wouldest thou, daughter ?" asked the Ab 
bot, turning to Lottchen. 

" Listen to a mother s prayer. The boy was 
born and educated in the bosom of the Church. For 
reasons at which I do not repine, Heaven early 
showed its displeasure on his father and on me. We 
were rich, and we became poor ; we were esteem 
ed of men, and we learned how much better is the 
support of God. We submitted ; and when we saw 
those who had once looked up to us in respect, 
looking down upon us in scorn, we kissed the child, 
were grateful, and did not repine. Even this trial 
was not sufficient the father was taken from his 
pains and mortifications, and my son put on the 
livery of a baron. I will not say I cannot say 
my strength would have been equal to all this of it 
self. An angel, in the form of this constant and ex 
celkmt woman, was sent to sustain me. Until the 
late *vrong to Limburg, we had our hopes and our 


hours of happiness but that crime defeated all. My 
boy hath perished by a just anger, and I remain to 
implore Heaven in his behalf. Wilt thou refuse the 
Church s succor to a childless mother, who, this fa 
vor obtained, will be ready to bless God and die ?" 

" Thou troublest me, daughter ; but I beg thee to 
remember I am- but the guardian of a high and 
sacred trust." 

" Father !" said a second and still more thrilling 

" Thou too, child ! What wouldest thou of one 
but too ready to yield, were it not for duty ?" 

Meta had kneeled, and throwing back the hood 
of her pilgrim s mantle, the change left her bloodless 
face exposed to the Abbot s view. The girl seemed 
severely struggling with herself; then, finding en 
couragement in her mother s eye, she was able to 

" I know, most holy and very reverend Abbot," 
she commenced, with an evidently regulated phrase 
ology, like one who had been instructed how to 
make the appeal, "that the Church hath need of 
much discipline; without which there would be 
neither duration nor order in its existence. This 
nath my mother taught me ; and we both admit it, 
and prize the truth. For this reason have we sub 
mitted ourselves to all its ordinances, never failing 
to confess and worship, or to observe fasts ana 
saints days. Even the mitred Bonifacius, there, will 
not deny this, as respects either of us " 

Meta delayed, as if inviting the Abbot to gainsay 
her words if he could ; but Bonifacius was silent. 

"As for him that hath died," resumed Meta, 
whose voice sounded like plaintive music, " this is 
the truth. He was born a Christian, and he never 
said aught in my presence against the Church. Thou 
canst not think, father, that he who sought my es 
teem, would strive to gain it by means that no Chris- 


tian girl could respect ? That he was often at the 
Abbey confessionals I know; and that he was in 
favor with this holy Prior, thou hast but to ask, to 
learn. In going against Limburg, he did but obey 
his lord, as others have often done before; and 
surely all that fall in battle are not to be hopelessly 
condemned. If there is heresy in Germany, is it not 
enough of itself to endure so great a danger in life, 
that the dead must be abandoned to their past acts, 
without succor from the Church, or thought from 
their friends ? Oh ! thou wilt think better, holy but 
cruel Rudiger, of thy hasty decision. Give us then 
masses for poor Berchthold ! I know not what Boni- 
facius may have said to thee in secret, concerning 
the youth, but this much would I say in his favor, in 
presence of the assembled earth more pious son, 
more faithful follower, a braver at need, a more 
gentle in intercourse, a truer or kinder heart than 
his, does not now beat in the Palatinate ! I know not 
but I exceed the limits of a maiden s speech, in what 
I say," continued the girl ardently, a bright spot 
shining on each cheek amid her tears, " but the dead 
are mute, and if those they loved are cold to their 
wants, in what manner is Heaven to know their 
cruel need ?" 

Good daughter," interrupted the Abbot, who be 
gan to feel distressed, " we will think of this. Go 
thou to thy rest, and may God bless thee !" 

" Nay, I cannot sleep while the soul of Berchthold 
endures this jeopardy ! Perhaps the Church will de 
mand penance in his behalf. My mother Lottchen 
is no longer young and strong, as formerly; but 
thou seest, father, what I am ! Name what thou wilt 
pilgrimages, fasts, stripes, prayers, or vigils, are 
alike to me. Nay, think not that I regard them ! 
Thou canst not bestow more happiness than to give 
fois task for poor Berchthold s sake. Oh ! hadst thou 


known him, holy Monk, so kind with the weak, so 
gentle with us maidens, and so true, Ihou wouldest 
not, nay, thou couldest not need another prayer to 
grant the masses !" 

" Bonifacius, is there no means of justifying the 
concession ?" 

" I would speak with thee, brother," answered he 
of Limburg, who, with a thoughtful countenance, 
awaited his companion a little apart from the others. 

The conference of the two prelates was short, but 
it was decisive. 

" Take away the child," said the Abbot Rudiger, 
to Ulrike ; " the weight of Heaven s displeasure 
must be borne." 

The Prior sighed heavily ; but he signed for the 
females to obey, like one who saw the uselessness 
of further entreaties. Leading the way, he left the 
Abbot s abode, his companions following ; nor did a 
murmur escape either, while giving this proof of 
patient submission It was only when Ulrike and 
Lottchen had reached the open air, that they found 
the helpless girl they supported was without sensi 
bility. As fits of fainting had been common of late, 
her mother felt no great alarm, nor was it long be 
fore all the female pilgrims sought the pillows they 
so much needed. 



" Fy, uncle Beaufort ! I have heard you preach, 
That malice was a great and grievous sin :" 

King Henry VL 

THE social character of a Benedictine commu 
nity has been mentioned in one of the earlier chap 
ters. That of Einsiedlen, though charged with the 
worship of altars especially favored, formed no ex 
ception to the general rule. If any thing, the num 
ber of distinguished pilgrims that frequented its 
shrine, rendered it liable to more than usual demands 
on its hospitality ; demands that were met by a suit 
able attention to the rules of the brotherhood. Even 
Loretto has its palace for the entertainment of such 
princes as can descend from their thrones to kneej 
in the santa casa ; for policy, not to speak of a 
more generous motive, requires that the path should 
be smoothed to those derotees who are unaccustom 
ed to encounter difficulties. In conformity with the 
rule of their order, then, though dwelling in the se 
cluded and wild region already described, the fra 
ternity of our Lady of the Hermits, had their Ab 
bot s abode, their lodgings for the stranger, and their 
stores of cheer, as well as their cells and their relu 
gious rites. 

It was about three hours after the interview re- 
lated in the last chapter a time that brings us near 
the turn of the night that we shall return to the 
narrative. The scene is a banqueting-hall, or, to 
speak in more measured phrase, a private refectory, 
in which the princely Abbot was wont to entertain 
those in whose behalf he saw sufficient reasons to 
exercise more than ordinary attention and favor. 
There was no great show of luxury in the ordinary 
decorations of the place, for a useless display of its 
means formed no part of the system of a commu- 


nity that chiefly existed by the liberality of the pious 
Still the hall was as well arranged as comported 
with the rude habits of the age, in that secluded re 
gion habits that consulted the substantial portion 
of human enjoyments far more than those elaborate 
and effeminate inventions, which use has since ren 
dered nearly indispensable to later generations. The 
floor was of tile, not very nicely polished ; the walls 
were wainscoted in dark oak ; and the ceiling had 
a rude attempt to represent the supper given at the 
marriage of Cana, and the miracle of the wine. 
Notwithstanding it was midsummer, a cheerful fire 
blazed in a chimney of huge dimensions ; the size 
of tne apartment and the keen air of the mountains 
rendering such an auxiliary not only agreeable, but 
necessary. The board was spacious and well cov 
ered, offering a generous display of those healthful 
and warm liquors, . which have so long given the 
Rhine additional estimation with every traveller of 

Around the table were placed the Abbot, and his 
unhoused peer, Bonifacius ; a favorite or two of the 
community of Einsiedlen ; with Emich, the Knight 
of Rhodes, the Abbe, Heinrich Frey, and the smith. 
The former were in their usual conventual robes ; 
while the latter were confounded, so far as externals 
were concerned, in their dresses of pilgrims. Diet 
rich owed his present advantage altogether to the 
fortuitous circumstance of being found in so good 
company, divested of the usual distinguishing marks 
of his rank. If Bonifacius was at all aware of his 
character, indifference or policy prevented its ex 

Had one been suddenly introduced to this mid 
night scene, he would scarce have recognized the 
weary penitent and the reproving churchman, in the 
jovial cheer and boon companionship of the hour. 
The appetite was already more than satisfied, and 


<nany a glass had been quaffed in honor of both 
hosts and guests, ere the precise moment to which 
we transfer the action of the tale. 

The princely prelate occupied the seat of honor, 
as became his high rank, while Bonifacius was 
seated at one elbow, and the Count of Hartenburg 
at the other. The great consideration due to the 
first, as well as his personal character and mild 
manners, had served to preserve all outward ap 
pearances of amity and courteous intercourse be 
tween his neighbors, neither of whom had as yet 
suffered the slightest intimation of their former 
knowledge of each other to escape him. This polite 
duplicity, which we have reason to think is of very 
ancient origin, and in which Albrecht of Viederbach 
and Monsieur Latouche assisted with rare felicity, 
aided in curbing the feelings of their inferiors, who, 
being less trained in the seemliness of deception, 
might otherwise have given vent to some of their 
bodily pains, by allusions of an irritating and ques 
tionable nature. 

" Thou findest our liquors palatable ?" courteous 
ly observed the Abbot, as we shall, par excellence, 
now distinguish him of Einsiedlen. " This of the 
silver cup, cometh from the liberality of thy late 
Elector, who had occasion to send votive offerings, 
in behalf of the illness of one of his family, to our 
Lady of the Hermits, and who had the grace to 
accompany the memorial to the convent treasury 
by this sign of private regard ; and that thou seem- 
est most to relish, is a neighborly boon from our 
brother of Saint Gall, than whom more generous 
churchman does not wear a cowl. Thou knowest, 
son, that the matter of good wine hath long been 
the subject of especial care with that thriving bro 

"Thouoverratest my knowledge of history, prince- 
y Abbot," returned Emich, setting down the glass, 


however, in a manner to show that his familiarity 
with good liquors might safely be assumed. " We 
of the lower countries waste but little time on these 
studies, trusting chiefly to those who dwell at the 
universities for the truth of what we hear. If he 
of Saint Gall dispenseth much of this goodly liquor, 
certes it were well that our spiritual guardians 
sent us, on occasions, to make our pilgrimages in 
that region, which cannot be far from this, unless 
my geography is greatly in fault." 

"Thou couldest not have better divined, hadst 
thou been a doctor of Wittenberg, or of Rome 
itself! Considering our mountain paths, and the 
insufficiency of the bridges and other conveniences, 
it may require two suns to urge a beast from our 
convent gate to that of our brother of Saint Gall, 
though, on emergencies, we have succeeded, by 
means of faithful footmen, in getting tidings to their 
?ars within the day and night. Saint Gall is a 
wealthy and well-bestowed Abbey, of very ancient 
existence, and of much repute as the haven of let 
ters, during the darkest period, learned Bonifacius, 
of our more modern times ; though the late increase 
of its town, and the growing turbulence of the times, 
have not permitted it to escape, with impunity, from 
the dangers that now beset all of Rome." 

This was the first allusion which had been made 
to the events that had so singularly brought the 
present company together; and, but for the address 
and self-command of Bonifacius, it might have 
brought on a discussion that would not have proved 

" Saint Gall and its merits are unknown to none 
who wear the frock of Saint Benedict," he said, 
with admirable composure. "Thou hast well said 
that its walls were, for many ages, the sole pro 
tectors of learning in our Europe ; for without the 
diligence and fidelity of its Abbots and brotherhood, 


much that is now preserved and prized would have 
been irretrievably lost to posterity and to ourselves." 

"I doubt not, reverend Benedictine," observed 
Emich, speaking courteously across the Abbot to 
Bonifacius, much as a well-bred guest at board 
addresses a convive to whom he is otherwise a 
stranger, " that this rare taste in liquors, of which 
there has just been question, is the fruit of the ex 
cellent knowledge which you extol ]" 

" That is a point I shall not hastily decide," re 
turned Bonifacius, smiling. " It may be so, for we 
have accounts of sore discord, between Saint Gall 
and others even of the Church, touching the uses 
and qualities of their wines." 

" That have we, and right faithfully recorded !" 
rejoined the Abbot. " There was the war between 
the Prince Bishop of Basle and our brethren of 
Saint Gall, that led to sore contentions and heavy 

" How ! did the desire to partake, urge our Rhenish 
prelate to push adventure so far, as to come this 
distance in quest of liquor ?" 

" Thou art in error, son pilgrim, concerning the 
nature of Saint Gall s stores. We have vineyards, 
it is true, among these mountains, as witness those 
on the shores of the neighboring lake of Zurich, as 
well as others that might be named ; but our country 
wines will warm the blood of peasant only. He 
that hath tasted better, seldom fills his cup with 
riquor that comes from any region this side the 
farther border of Swabia your vines of the Rhein- 
gau in specialty; whereas the territories of Saint 
Gall lie still farther from those favored countries 
than we ourselves." 

" You have need to explain, princely Abbot ; for 
that the Baslois should come in our direction, in 
quest of good liquor, is clear enough, whereas the 
war you have named, would have sent nim farther 
frm his object." 


" Thou hast not come hither, son, without mark 
ing the course of the Rhine, on whose banks thou 
hast so long journeyed. This great stream, though 
so turbulent and dangerous among the mountains, 
is of much use in procuring our supplies. By means 
of the lake of Constance, and the lower river, heavy 
burthens arrive at the very territory of our sister 
Abbey ; and the dispute to which there has been 
allusion, came of the fact that the right reverend 
prelate of Basle would fain have demanded toll on 
the purchases of the Abbey. Thou mayest remem 
ber, brother, 1 looking towards Bonifacius, "that 
when both were tired of blows, the good Bishop 
sent to demand * What the Virgin had done, that 
the churchmen above should slay her people ? and 
that he received for a merry answer the question 
of, What has Saint Gall done, that thou shouldest 
stop his wines? 

The listeners laughed, in low simpers, like men 
amused with this characteristic narrative; for such 
incidents were yet too recent to excite much other 
reflection, even among churchmen, than what was 
connected with the vulgar temporal interests of the 

" By the Magi ! holy and princely Abbot, thy 
tale giveth additional flavor!" said Emich, who 
greatly enjoyed the quarrel; "it moreover serveth 
to shut out thoughts that come from aching bones 
and weary feet." 

" Thy pilgrimage, son, will bring its rewards, as 
well as its pains. Should it be a means of remov 
ing thee, for a time, from the heresies of Germany, 
and of placing thee and thine in more friendly com 
munion with the Church, the toil will not be lost." 

" As such do I esteem the duty," returned Emich, 
tossing oflf his glass, after steadily regarding the 
liquor a moment by the fire-light. " Saint Gall had 
the right of the matter; and he who would not 


take up arms for this, did not deserve to wear them. 
How now, Herr Frey ! Thou art silent ?" 

"Not more so, I trust, nobly-born Emich, than 
becometh one on a pilgrimage ; and one who hath 
need to bethink him of his duties, lest his town 
should have cause to reproach him with negligence." 

" God^s truth, Master Burgomaster ! If any here 
have reason to bethink them of Deurckheim, it is 
the city s sovereign and lord. So cheer up, and 
let us lighten the load we carry, always under the 
favor and good graces of this hospitable and well- 
endowed brotherhood." 

" Thou art a servitor of the cross ?" demanded 
the Abbot of Albrecht of Viederback, beckoning 
the Knight to come nearer. 

" An indifferent one, princely and pious Rudiger, 
and, I might say, one that hath yielded to the seduc 
tions of company and good fellowship, not to speak 
of the force of blood; else would he have been 
spared this expiation." 

" Nay, I name not thy pursuit with the intent to 
reproach ;" interrupted the courteous prelate. "Such 
liberty does not become hospitality. We make a 
difference within these walls between the confes 
sional and the board." 

" The distinction is just, and promises perpetuity 
and lasting respect to our faith, spite of all heresies. 
The rock on which this Brother Luther and his 
followers will split, holy Abbot at least, it so seem- 
eth to an uninstructed capacity is the desire to 
refine beyond men s means of endurance. Religion, 
like chivalry, is good in its way ; but neither the 
priest nor the knight can bear his armor at all times 
and seasons. Your schismatic hath the desire to 
convert the layman into a monk, whereas the beauty 
of creation is its order; and he that is charged with 
the cure of souls, is sufficient for his object, with 
out laying this constant burthen on the shoulders of 
2 M2 


him that hath already more of temporal cares than 
he can bear." 

" Were others more of thy mind, son, we should 
nave less trouble, and better discipline. Our altars 
are not useless, and if they who frequent them, could 
be content to think that we are sufficient for their 
safety, the world would be saved much disputation, 
and haply some shedding of blood. But with these 
safe and creditable opinions, Sir Knight and Pil 
grim," continued the Abbot, dropping his voice to a 
more confidential key, " it may be permitted me to 
express surprise, that I see thee one of a penitence 
commanded for violence done a convent !" 

Albrecht of Viederbach shrugged his shoulders, 
and glanced meaningly towards his cousin. 

" What will you, right noble and reverend Pre 
late ! We are but the creatures of accident. There 
is respect due to fellowship and hospitality, to say 
naught of the claims of blood and kindred. The evil 
turn of the Rhodian warfare, some longings to look 
again at our German fields, for the father-land keeps 
its hold of us more particularly in adversity, with 
the habits of an unsettled existence, served to lead 
me to the castle of Hartenburg ; and fairly entered, 
it will excite no wonder that the guest was ready 
to lend his sword, in a short foray, to the host. These 
sallies, as thou well knowest, princely Rudiger, are 
not so rare as to be deemed miracles." 

" What thou sayest is true," returned the Abbot, 
always speaking as it were aside to the Knight, and 
manifesting no great surprise at this avowal of prin 
ciples, that were common enough in that age, and 
which have descended in a different form to our 
own, since we daily see men, in the gravest affairs 
of a nation, putting their morality at the disposal of 
party, rather than incur the odium of being wanting" 
in this species of social faith. " What thou sayest 
is very true, and may well furnish thy plea with the 


Grand Master. Thou mayest on many accounts 
4 oo, find this pilgrimage -wholesome." 

" Doubt it not, reverend Abbot. We had little 
time during the siege, to pay due attention to the 
rites ; and the general looseness of our lives, since 
driven from the island, has left long arrears ta 
settle ; a fact that I endeavor to remember now." 

" And thy associate he of gentle mien ; hath he 
not also connexion with the Church ?" 

Albrecht turned to whisper the reply. 

" Tis but one that circulates under the frock, holy 
Benedictine a youth that hath been the dupe of 
Lord Emich ; for to speak thee fair, my cousin 
wanteth not of the policy necessary to his condition 
and to the habits of a sage government." 

The Abbot smiled in a way to show a good intel 
ligence between him and his companion. After this, 
they talked apart earnestly for a while, beckoning 
Monsieur Latouche to make one of their party, 
after sundry glances in his direction. In the mean 
time, the general discourse proceeded among the 
other guests. 

" I was sorrowed to hear, reverend Benedictine," 
proceeded the Count, purposely avoiding the eye of 
Bonifacius, by addressing himself to one of the bro 
therhood of Einsiedlen, " that thy community hath 
refused us masses, for the soul of one that fell in 
that unhappy dispute which is the cause of oui 
present pleasure, in being in so goodly company. 1 
loved the youth, and would fain deal liberally by 
those that remember his present necessities." 

" Hath the matter been fairly put to those having 
the right to decide ?" demanded the monk, showing 
by the direction of his eye, that he meant his superior. 

" They tell me it hath, and put touchingly ; but 
without success. I trust there has been no hostile in 
terference, in this affair, which concerneth no less 
than a soul, and ought to be dealt by tenderly." 


" I know of but one, and that is the Father of 
Evil himself, that hath an enmity to souls !" answer 
ed the monk, with very honest surprise " As for 
us, it is our pleasure to be of use on all such occa 
sions ; and that especially when the request is pre 
ferred by friends of the deceased, that are worthy 
of so much higher favor." 

" Dost thou call those who overturn altars," said 
Bonifacius, sternly, and with great firmness of voice, 
" who visit the temple with the armed hand, and 
who defy the Church, worthy of her favors !" 

u Reverend Abbot !" 

" Nay, let him give his humor vent," said Emich, 
proudly " The cold air and a roofless head are 
apt to move the temper. I would fain have met thee, 
Bonifacius, in amity, as should have been the case, 
after our solemn treaty, and all the reparations that 
are made ; but the desire to rule, it would seem, does 
not abandon thee, even in banishment !" 

" Thou art deceived in imagining that I shall for 
get myself, or my office, rude Emich ; the question 
put was to the Benedictine, and not to thee." 

" Then let the Benedictine answer. I ask thee, 
Father, is it becoming or just, that the soul of a 
youth of good repute, of moral life, and of reason 
able earthly hopes, should be refused aid, on the 
mere grudge of ancient hostility, or haply that there 
were some passages at his death, that might have 
been better avoided ?" 

" The Church must judge for itself, noble Pilgrim, 
and decide on those rules which regulate its course !" 

" By the sainted eleven thousand ! Thou forget- 
test, that all usages have been respected, and that 
the masses are not asked as the beggar imploreth 
alms, but that fairly counted gold is proffered in be 
half of the youth. If enough has not been done in 
this way, I swear to thee, Bonifacius, since it would 
seem thy influence here is so strong, that on my re- 


turn there shall be further offerings on his account. 
Berchthold was very dear to me, and I would not 
have it said that all memory of the boy is lost be 
neath the ashes of Limburg." 

Though both in their several ways were irascible, 
violent, and unaccustomed to control, neither Emich 
nor Bonifacius was wanting in that species of self- 
command, which is so necessary to men intrusted 
with the care of important interests. They had 
early learned to bring feeling more or less in subjec 
tion to their policy ; and though not quite equal to a 
cold and managed display of indifference on such 
subjects as too closely crossed their views, it re 
quired a certain combination of excitement to induce 
either, unnecessarily, to betray his true emotions. 
Their personal intercourse had, in consequence of 
this affected moderation, been less violent and 
wrangling, than would otherwise have proved, for 
it did not often happen that both found themselves 
wrought up to the point of explosion, precisely at 
the same instant ; and he that happened to remain 
the coolest, stood as a check on the passions of him 
who had momentarily forgotten appearances. But 
for this fact, the ill-timed and ill-worded question of 
the Count might have produced an immediate rup 
ture, to the injury of the pilgrims interests, and to 
the great scandal of the brotherhood of Einsiedlen : 
as it was, however, Bonifacius lister ed with outward 
courtesy, and answered more like one that remem 
bered his priestly office than his particular injuries. 

" Had it been my good fortune, Herr Pilgrim," he 
said calmly, " to have remained in charge of altars 
so esteemed, as to be sought on such a behalf, thy 
application in favor of the youth would have re 
ceived meet attention ; but thou now addresseth a 
prelate, that, like thee, is indebted to the hospitality 
of these excellent brothers, for a roof to cover his 
head. 1 


" Nay, I know not," added the Count a little con 
fused by this sudden humility, " but rather than de 
sert so young a soul in this strait, and soul of a ser 
vitor whom I so much loved, that I would not even 
now endow some chapel of a size and decorations 
suited to his station while living." 

" On Limburg hill, Heir Emich ?" 

" Nay, excellent Bonifacius, thou forgettest our 
loving treaty, this pilgrimage, and other conditions 
honorably fulfilled. Altars can never rise again on 
Limburg hill, for that were to lose sight of our oaths 
and promises, which would be a crying sin in both ; 
but altars and chapels may exist elsewhere. Give 
us then this grace, and look to our gratitude and 
justice for the reward." 

Bonifacius smiled, for h<s felt his power, and he 
enjoyed it like a man conscious of having so lately 
been in the hands of the very baron, who now so 
earnestly beseeched his favor. It may not be easy 
for one educated in these later days, to understand 
the singular contradiction, which led Emich of Har- 
tenburg, the destroyer of Limburg, thus to entreat 
a monk ; but he who would properly understand his 
character, must remember the durability of impres 
sions made in youth, the dread mystery that is at 
tached to the unknown future, and, most of all, the 
flagrant inconsistencies, that are always the fruits 
of a struggle between principles and interests, be 
tween the force of reason and the desires of selfish 

" Thou accusest me unwarrantably, when thou 
sayest that our oaths, or our loving treaty is forgot 
ten, pious Pilgrim," returned the Benedictine ; " both 
are respected and well remembered, as thou wilt 
see, i^. the end. But there is a feature in this request 
of thine, that hath apparently escaped unwittingly 
one of thy known justice and impartiality. Thy 
forester is well known for having greatly affected 
the heresy that is ripe in Germany " 


" Nay, Bonifacius, here must be an error," in 
terrupted the Count ; " thou hast his very mother in 
our pilgrimage ; and dost think a proselyte of Luther 
would undertake so grievous pain to satisfy Rome ?" 

" We speak of the child, and not of the parent, 
Herr Pilgrim, Had all that were trained in better 
principles observed the opinions of their fathers, our 
age would have been spared this heresy. Of the 
boy s irreverence there can be little doubt, since 
mine own ears have been my witnesses." 

" How, hast thou ever shrived the youth, rever 
end Abbot ?" demanded Emich in surprise. " I did 
not think thee of so great condescension to one of his 
hopes, nor by the mass ! did I think the youth so weak, 
as to touch on disputed points at the confessional !" 

" There are other acknowledgments made, Herr 
Pilgrim, than those which are heard in the Church, 
or under the cloak of her mysteries. There was 
formerly a question between us, noble Count, ami 
cably settled, and in a merry manner that need not 
now be named." 

" Touching certain vineyards !" rejoined Emich 
laughing, " The fact is not so distant as to be forgot 
ten, though neither my cousin nor this good Abbe 
proved as stanch in that matter as had been expected!" 

"Thy forester did better service. Thou mayst 

also remember there were certain discussions then 

had, and that the bold boy ventured on a comparison 

of the tree trimmed of its useless branches, and the 

tree suffered to stand in its deformity." 

" Wilt thou abandon a soul to jeopardy for speech 
light as this, Herr Bonifacius ? God s justice ! This 
promiseth but little in mine own behalf, at some fu 
ture day. Berchthold, heated and warm in the in 
terest of his lord, threw out hints that might other 
wise have been spared ; moreover, the greater the 
sinner, Father, the greater need of masses and 

" This will not I gainsay my objection goeth no 


farther than to urge that those who are willing to 
live by the counsels of Luther, should be also will 
ing to seek salvation by his means." 

** Friends and pilgrims," said the Abbot of Ein- 
siedlen approaching the table, from which he had re 
tired a little, to converse more freely with the Abbot 
and the Knight of Rhodes " the hour is at hand 
which has been set to celebrate an early mass in 
behalf of this pilgrimage. The bell is giving the 
first summons, and it is meet that we retire to pre 
pare ourselves for the duty." 

At this interruption Bonifacius, who saw a storm 
gathering, gladly arose, and instantly withdrew, the 
rest dropped off, according to their several condi 
tions ; Emich and his cousin retiring with the leisure 
of men more accustomed to make others wait, than 
of hastening their movements to the injury of their 
own convenience. 

After perusing this scene, we admonish the reader 
to spare his remarks, until the subject has been well 
pondered in his mind. In portraying what past in 
the private refectory of the convent of our Lady of 
the Hermits, we wish to convey no censure on any 
particular persuasion, or sect, or order of Christians, 
but simply to exhibit the habits and opinions of the 
age in which the individuals of this legend existed. 
Let those who are disposed to be hypercritical, or 
censorious in their remarks, coolly look around them, 
and, first making the necessary allowances for the 
new aspects of society, put the question, whether 
contradictions as apparent, inconsistencies nearly as 
irreconcileable with truth, and selfishness almost as 
gross and as unjust, is not now manifest equally 
among the adherents of Rome, and the proselytes 
of Luther, as any that have been here represented. 
We may claim to have improved on the opinions and 
practices of our predecessors, but we are still far 
from being the consistent and equitable creatures 
that, it is to be hoped, we are yet destined to become. 



"Forbear to judge, for we are sinners all. 

King Henry VI. 

AMONG the expiations prescribed to the 
of Deurckheim and Hartenburg, there had been in 
cluded an especial and early morning service, the 
one to which they were now summoned. Time had 
:>een allowed the weaker portion of the party to rest, 
while the stronger had been employed in the man- 
oer described in the preceding chapter. Certain 
self-inflicted stripes it was taken for granted had 
teen duly bestowed, at different periods, during the 
<ong journey from the Palatinate. 

It was an hour after the separation of the abbey 
guests that the procession of Benedictines swept out 
of the cloisters into the body of the church. Though 
far from being a community remarkable for the aus- 
lerity of its practices, it was not unusual for monks 
of all orders, to quit their pallets on extraordinary 
occasions, and to break the stillness of night with 
the music and service of the altar. When the spirit 
comes thus fresh from repose, and in a disposition 
suited to the object, into the immediate presence of 
the Deity, incense and praise so free from the dross 
of humanity, must come nearer to that high purity 
which adorns the worship of angels than any other 
that can ascend from man, since it is at such a mo 
ment that all least feel the burthen of their corporeal 

Even in the daily parochial duty, the good Catho 
lics still observe a uniformity and rigidity of prac 
tice tna. are unknown even in this land of Puritan 
origin. The church-bell is heard in every village, 
with the first dawn of light ; at indicated hours, all 
within hearing of its sound are admonished to recall 
their thoughts from earth, by addressing a prayer to 


God ; and with the close of day, the flock is once 
again summoned to the fold, at the service of ves 
pers. These are beautiful and touching memorials 
of our duties, and when practised in sincerity, can 
not fail to keep the mind in better subjection to the 
great authority that directs all our destinies. In 
countries where the husbandmen dwell together in 
villages, the practice is easy, and we hold its loss to 
be one of the greatest disadvantages of our own 
diffuse distribution of rural population; a distribu 
tion which is also the reason why we must for ever 
be wanting in several other features of social inter 
course, that give to life more or less of its poetical 
charm. Happily there are, on the other hand, ac 
companying advantages that perhaps more than 
serve as offsets to this, as to most other similar 
anomalies in our usages. 

The arrangements of a Benedictine chapel, and 
the decorations of its altars, together with the man 
ner in which the brotherhood occupy their stalls in 
the choir, have been too often mentioned in these 
pages, to require repetition. Long accustomed to 
these exercises, the monks were early in their places, 
though they for whom the mass was to be said were 
not all as punctual. 

Ulrike and Lottchen, with the rest of the females, 
entered the church in a body, while the men, as is 
usual in matters that touch the finer feelings, were 
the last. Erriich and the Burgomaster, however, 
finally made their appearance, followed by their 
companions, the whole betraying by their drowsy 
air, that they had been endeavoring to sleep off the 
late repast, and to recover from their fatigue. 

During the mass, the companions of Lottchen 
and Ulrike exhibited exemplary devotion, and a 
close attention to the service ; but the gaping of the 
Count and his circle, the wandering eyes, and 
finally the profound repose of several, sufficiency 


showed that the ethereal part of their natures was 
altogether unequal to the mastery of that which 
was material. 

There was a procession from the choir to the 
shrine, and prayers were said, as on the previous 
day, with the eyes of all riveted on the unearthly 
countenance of Maria. As each was left to judge 
for himself of the manner in which he discharged 
his particular duties, there was a very sensible dif 
ference in tne time occupied by the several devotees, 
in the performance of the common vows. The 
females appeared to be embodied with the stone, 
and there were entire minutes during which their 
motionless forms would have seemed to be as in 
animate as the image on which they gazed, but for 
the heaving of a breast, or an occasional tremor, 
outward and visible signs of the workings of the 
spirit within. Meta kneeled between her mother 
and Lottchen, her whole soul apparently engrossed 
in devotion. As she studied the bright eye that 
gleamed upon her from the depths of that mysteri- 
our chapel, illuminated as it was by gorgeous and 
bright lamps, her fancy transformed the image into 
a being sainted and blessed by the choice of God ; 
and her own gentle spirit clung to the delusion, as 
one replete with a hope to cheer her own desolation. 
She thought of the future, and of the grave ; of the 
rewards of the just, and of Heaven; of that endless 
eternity and its fruition in which she confided, and 
the ties of earth began sensibly to lessen. There 
was a holy desire to be at rest. But, notwithstand 
ing the spiritual nature of her employment, the 
form of Berchthold, gay in the green garb of a 
forester, with laughing eye, light step, and cheerful 
voice, mingled in all the pictures of her imagination. 
Now he appeared a saint, robed and bearded, as 
she had been wont to see those holy men represented 
in works of art, and yet, by a contradiction wrought 


by her own heart, always bright and youlhful 
and now she thought him gifted with wings, and 
united to the beings of that heavenly choir, which 
had so many representatives around her suspended 
between the roof and the pavement of the edifice. 
Singular as it may seem to some of our readers, so 
busy and so alluring was the working of her imagi 
nation at this thrilling moment, that the mourning 
and affectionate girl had rarely spent an hour of 
more holy enjoyment, than this which she passed 
before the shrine of our Lady of the Hermits. 

Very different were the sensations of Lottchen. 
Her griefs were those in which the fancy had no 
share. She wept for the child to which she had 
given birth; for the stay of her age, and for the 
pride of her life. No fancy could betray the imagi 
nation of a mother, nor could any workings of the 
mind convert the sad reality into aught but the bit 
ter truth. Still Lottchen found consolation in her 
prayers. Religious faith was active, though imagi 
nation slumbered ; for nothing can be more different 
than the delusions of the one, and the deep sustained 
convictions of the other ; and she was able to find 
a solace for her sorrow, by looking with calm, Chris 
tian hope beyond the interests of life. 

The sentiments and feelings of Ulrike differed 
from those of her friend, only in the degree, and in 
the peculiarity of those circumstances which di 
rected her maternal solicitude to a still living object 
But Ulrike, kind, true, and warm of heart, had ten 
derly regarded the lost Berchthold. Had there been 
no other motive than the fact of his being the off 
spring of Lottchen, she could not have been indif 
ferent to him ; but, accustomed, as she had been for 
years, to look forward to his union with Meta, she 
felt his loss little less than she would have mourned 
over that of a child of her own. 

Not so with Heinrich. The bold and spirited 


tupport he received from Berchthold during the as 
sault, had sensibly won upon his esteem, for the af 
finities between the brave are amongst the strong 
est ; but the Burgomaster had not passed a life in 
the indulgence of a passion so engrossing, and so 
incurable, as the love of gain, readily to cast aside 
all his intentions and objects, at the impulse of a 
purely generous feeling. He would freely have 
given of his beloved stores to the youth ; but to be 
stow Meta was, in his eyes, to bestow all, and, un 
der his habits, it seemed to be giving gold without 
an equivalent, to give his daughter s hand to a pen 
niless husband. There are some who accumulate 
for the advantages that are incidental to wealth ; 
others hoard under the goadings of an abstract and 
nearly inexplicable passion ; while another set heap 
.ogether their means, as boys roll up snow, with a 
delight in witnessing how large a mass may be col 
lected by their agency. Heinrich was of the latter 
class, subject, however, to a relish for the general 
results of wealth, and like all men who deem mo 
ney as an end and not as a means, he was in the 
practice of considering the last measure of his poli 
cy, which was intended to double the stock by the 
marriage of his daughter, as the happiest and the 
greatest stroke of a fortunate and prosperous life, 
And yet Heinrich Frey had his moments of strong 
natural feeling, and the manner in which Meta 
mourned for the death of Berchthold touched him, 
to a degree that might have dispo-ed him to say he 
regretted the fate of his young lieutenant, as much 
on her account as on his own. It is more than prob 
able, however, could Berchthold have been suddenly 
restored to life, that the Burgomaster would have 
returned to his former mode of thinking, and would 
have thought the resuscitation of the young forester 
sufficient, of itself, to assuage the grief of a whole 



Heinrich and the Count were among the first to 
quit their suppliant attitudes before the shrine. They 
had each said the required number of prayers, arid 
brushing their knees, the two pilgrims strolled away, 
deeper into the body of the Church, like men well 
satisfied with themselves. But, while so ready to 
give relief to his own bones, the Burgomaster kept 
a vigilant eye on Dietrich, who, being a hired peni 
tent, was expected to give Deurckheim the full worth 
of its money, in the way of mortifications and aves. 

Most of the lights in the choir had been extin 
guished, and the aisles of the edifice were dimly 
visible, by means of a few scattered candles, that 
burned almost without ceasing, before the altars of 
different subordinate chapels. As they walked down 
the great aisle, Emich slowly laid a hand on the 
shoulder of his companion, seeming to invite his 
close attention, by the grave and meaning manner 
of the action. 

" I could wish that our poor Berchthold, after all, 
had the virtue of masses from these servitors of our 
Lady of the Hermits !" said the Count. " If there 
oe especial savor in any of this description of pray 
ers, methinks it must be among men who watch a 
shrine of which they tell all these miracles !" 

" Your wish, nobly-born-brother-pilgrim-and-friend, 
is but the expression of mine own. To own the 
truth, I have thought of little else, while going 
through the aves, but to devise the means of per 
suading the holy Abbot, at a reasonable rate, to 
change his mind, and honestly to let the youth s soul 
benefit by his intercessions." 

" Thou hast not well bethought thee altogether, 
friend Heinrich, of thine own errand here !" 

" Sapperment ! What would you, Herr Emich, 
from a man of my years and education ? One gets 
to be so ready with the words by oft repeating, that 
going through the beads is much like tapping with 


a finger while the eye looks over an account. But 
to speak of the boy were we to bid higher for 
these masses, it might raise the present price, and 
we be uselessly losers ; for, as I understand the 
question, the amount given in no manner changes 
the true value of the intercession to the defunct." 

" Heinrich," returned the Count, musingly, " they 
say that Brother Luther denounces these post mor 
tem prayers, as vain and of none avail !" 

" That would alter the case greatly, Lord Count- 
and-brother-pilgrim. One could wish to be sure in 
an affair of this delicacy, for if the monk of Wit- 
tenburg hath reason of his side, we lose our gold ; 
and if he hath wrong, the soul of Berchthold may 
be none the better for our doubts !" 

" We laymen are sorely pressed between the two 
opinions, worthy Burgomaster, and I could fain wish 
that these reformers would bring the question speed 
ily to a conclusion. By the mass ! there are mo 
ments when I am ready to throw away the rosary, 
and to take Duke Friedrich of Saxony s side of the 
question, as being the most reasonable and manly. 
But, then again, should he prove wrong, thou know st, 
Heinrich, we lose the benefit of chapels built, of 
aves said, of gold often paid, and the high protec 
tion of Rome! Thou seest the strait of poor Berch 
thold, and this only for some little freedom of dis 
course !" 

Heinrich sighed, for he felt the force of the di 
lemma, and lie appeared to ponder well before he 
answered. Edging nearer to the Count, like a man 
who felt he was about to utter dangerous sentiments 
in a delicate situation, he whispered the reply. 

" Here Emich," he said, " we are but dust, and 
that of no very excellent quality. The potter s ware 
hath its utility, if well, baked and otherwise pre 
pared ; but of what use is man when the breath 
hath departed ? They say the soul remains, and that 


it must be cared for, neither of which will I dis 
pute ; but is it reasonable to buy out a patent of sal 
vation, for an intangible thing, with current coin ] 
Look to that knave, the smith ! Your pardon, nobly- 
born Count but here hath our town engaged the 
rogue to do penance in its behalf, and my eyes are 
no sooner oft him, than his lips become as stationary 
as the wings of a mill in a calm. Duty to Deurck 
heim demands that I should give him a jog, aftei 
which, with your gracious leave, we will look furthei 
into the philosophy of that in which we were dealing. 

Se saying, the zealous Heinrich hurried down the 
aisle towards his religious mercenary, with a laud 
able and sensitive watchfulness over the interests of 
his constituents. He found the smith perfectly im 
movable, and it was only by repeated and vigorous 
shakes, that he succeeded in arousing his auxiliary 
from a profound slumber. 

In the meanwhile, Emich walked on, still occu 
pied by his reflections. On reaching the gate of the 
choir, he was about to retrace his steps, when he 
was privately beckoned, by one whose dusky form 
appeared at a side door of the church, to draw 
nearer. On approaching, Emich found that his old 
rival, Bonifacius, awaited his coming. 

The salutations of these ancient enemies were 
courteous, but distant. After a short parley, how 
ever, they withdrew in company ; and it was past 
the turn of the day, ere the Count of Hartenburg 
reappeared among the pilgrims. The details of what 
passed in this secret conference were never known 
to the public, though subsequent events gave reason 
to believe that they had reference to the final settle 
ment of the long-contested existence of Limburg in 
the Jaergerthal. It was known generally in the Ab 
bey, that the Abbot Rudiger made one of the coun 
cil, and that its termination was friendly. Those 
who were disposed to be critical, intimated in after 
days, that, in this dispute, as in most others in which 


Jie weak and humble lend themselves to the views 
of the great and the strong, they for whom the bat 
tie had been fought, and whose apparently implaca* 
ole enmities had sown discord among their follow 
ers, suddenly found means to appease their resent 
ments, and to still the tempest they had raised, in 
such a manner as to suffer most of its consequences 
to fall on the heads of their allies. This result, which 
appears to be universal with those who have the 
imprudence to connect themselves indissolubly with 
friends who can irretrievably dispose of their des 
tinies, was perhaps to be looked for, since the man, 
or the community, that is so weak as to confide too 
implicitly in the faith of the powerful, whether con 
sidered individually or as nations, may at once con 
sider itself a tool to favor views that have little con 
nexion with its own interests. In cases of this na 
ture, men are wont to share the fate of the orange- 
skin, which is thrown away after being sucked ; and 
communities themselves are apt to undergo some 
such changes as those which mark the existence of 
the courser, which is first pampered and caressed, 
then driven upon the pole, and which commonly 
ends its career at the plow. 

During the time Bonifacius and Emich were ar 
ranging their secret treaty, in the best manner that 
the former could hope for, in the actual state of 
Germany, and to the entire satisfaction of the latter, 
the ceremonies of the expiation proceeded. Aroused 
from his sleep, Dietrich endeavored to compensate 
for lost time by renewed diligence, and the Burgo 
master himself, apprehensive that the negligence of 
the hireling might bring a calamity on the town, 
joined himself to the party, with as much zeal as if 
he had as yet done nothing towards effecting the 
object of their journey. 

The sun had fallen far towards the west, when the 
pilgrims finally took their departure for the Palati 
nate. Father Arnolph was again at their head, and, 


blessed by the Abbot and in favor with the Church, 
the whole went their way, if not with lightened 
hearts, at least with bodies much refreshed, with 
hopes rekindled, and with packs materially diminish 
ed in size. 

Ulrike and Lottchen paused when they reached 
the boundary of the plain, where they could com 
mand a parting view of the Abbey. Here they, and 
Meta, and indeed most of the party, prayed long 
and fervently ; or at least so seemed to pray. When 
they arose from their knees, the Prior, whose whole 
time while at the convent had been deeply occupied 
by religious exercises, and whose spirit had been re 
freshed, in a degree proportioned to his sincerity 
and faith, came to the side of the principal group of 
the females, his eye beaming with holy hope, and his 
face displaying innate peace of mind. 

" Ye are now, daughters, about to take leave, for 
ever, of the shrine of our Lady of the Hermits," he 
said. " If ye have seen aught to lessen the high ex 
pectation with which the pious are apt to draw near 
this sacred altar, ascribe it to that frailty which is 
inherent in the nature of man; and if ye have reap 
ed consolation and encouragement, from your offer 
ings and prayers, ye may, with all security, impute 
it to the goodness of God. And thou, my child, 1 he 
added with paternal tenderness, addressing Meta 
* thou hast been sorely tried in thy young life, but 
God is with thee, as he is in yon blue sky in that 
sun of molten gold in yonder icy pile that props 
the heavens, and in all his works, that are so glori 
ous in our eyes ! Turn with me to yonder mountain, 
that from its form is called the Mitre. Regard it 
well Dost see aught in particular ?" 

" Tis an abrupt and dreary pile of rock, Father; 
answered Meta. 

" Seest thou naught else on its highest summit .- 

Meta looked intently, for in sooth there did appea 


v the uppermost pinnacle of the mass, an object so 
small, and so like a line, that, at first, she passed a 
land across her eye to remove a floating hair from 
Defore her sight. 

" Father !" exclaimed the girl, clasping her hands 
fervently, " I behold a cross !" 

" That rock is the type of God s durable justice ; 
That cross is the pledge of his grace and love. Go 
thy way, daughter, and have hope." 

The pilgrims turned and descended the mountain 
in musing silence. That evening they crossed the 
lake, and slept within the ancient walls of the ro 
mantic town of Rapperschwyl. On the following 
day, the pilgrimage being now happily accomplish 
ed, they proceeded toward their own distant habita 
tions, descending the Rhine in boats. 


4 But thou art clay and canst but comprehend 
That which was clay, and such thou shalt behold." 


THE return of the pilgrims was a happy moment 
to all who dwelt in Deurckheim. Many prayers had 
been offered in their behalf, during the long absence, 
and divers vague reports of their progress and suc 
cess, had been eagerly swallowed by their friends 
and townsmen. When, however, the Burgomaster 
and his companions were actually seen entering 
their gates, the good citizens ran to and fro, in 
troubled delight, and the greetings, especially among 
the gentler sex, were mingled with many tears. 
Emich and his followers did not appear, having 
taken a private path to the castle of Hartenburg. 

The simple and still Catholic (though wavering) 
burghers had felt many doubts, concerning the fruits 
cf their bold policy, while the expiatory penance 


was pending. Their town was in the midst of a re 
gion that is perhaps more pregnant with wild le 
gends, even at this hour, than any other of equal 
extent in Europe ; and it can be easily conceived 
that, under such circumstances, the imaginations of 
a people who had been, as it were, nurtured in su 
perstition, would not be likely to slumber. In ef 
fect, numberless startling rumors were rife, in the 
town, the valley, and on the plain. Some spoke of 
fiery crosses gleaming at night above the walls of 
the fallen Abbey; others whispered of midnight 
chants, and spectre-like processions, that had been 
heard or seen among the ruined towers ; while one 
peasant, in particular, asseverated that he had held 
discourse with the spirit of Father Johan. These 
tales found credulous auditors or not, according to 
the capacity of the listener ; and to these may be 
added another, that was accompanied by such cir 
cumstances of confirmation, as are apt momentarily 
to affect the minds of those, even, who are little 
wont to lend attention to any incidents of miracu 
lous nature. 

A peasant, in crossing the chase by a retired path, 
was said to have encountered Berchthold, clad in 
his dress of green, wearing the hunting-horn and 
cap, and girded with the usual couteau-de-chasse, or, 
in fine, much as he was first presented to the reader 
in our early pages. The youth was described to 
have been hot on the chase of a roebuck, and flush 
ed with exercise. From time to time, he was said 
to wind his horn. The hounds were near, obedient 
as usual to his call, and indeed the vision was de 
scribed as partaking of most of the usual accompa 
niments of the daily exercise of the forester. 

Had the tale ended here, it might have passed off 
among the thousand other similar wonderful sights, 
that were then related in that wonder-loving coun 
try, and been forgotten. But it was accompanied 


with positive circumstances, that addressed them 
selves, in a manner not to be disputed, to the senses. 
The two favorite hounds of the forester had been 
missing for some weeks, arid, from time to time, 
cries resembling theirs were unequivocally heard, 
ringing among the arches of the forest, arid filling 
the echoes of the mountains. 

This extraordinary confirmation of the tale of the 
boor, occurred the week preceding the return of the 
pilgrims. The latter found their townsmen under a 
strong excitement from this cause, for that very day, 
nearly half the population of Deurckheim had been 
into the pass of the Haart which was described in 
the opening chapter of this work, and with their 
own ears had heard the deep baying of the hounds. 
It was only after the first felicitations of the return 
were over, and during the night which followed, 
that the pilgrims learned this unusual circumstance. 
It reached Emich himself, however, ere his foot 
crossed the threshold of his castle. 

On the following day, Deurckheim presented a 
picture of pleased but troubled excitement. Its popu 
lation was happy in the return of their chosen and 
best, but troubled with the marvellous incident of 
the dogs, and by the wild rumors that accompanied 
it; rumors which thickened every hour by corrobo 
rating details from different sources. Early that 
very morning a new occurrence helped to increase 
the excitement. 

From the moment that the Abbey was destroyed, 
not an individual had dared to enter its tottering 
walls. Two peasants of the Jaegerthal, incited by 
cupidity, had indeed secretly made the attempt, but 
they returned with the report of strange sights, and 
of fearful groans existing within the consecrated 
pile. The rumor of this failure, together with a lin 
gering respect for altars that had been so long rev 
erenced, effectually secured the spot against all 


similar expeditions. The alarm spread to the Heiden- 
mauer, for, by a confusion of incidents, that is far 
from unusual in popular rumors, an account of Use, 
concerning the passage of the armed band through 
the cedars, on the night of the assault, coupled with 
the general distrust that was attached to the place, 
had been so perverted and embellished, as effectually 
to leave the ancient camp to its solitude. Some said 
that even the spirits of the Pagans had been aroused 
by the sacrilege, from the sleep of centuries, and 
others argued that, as the hermit was known to have 
perished in the conflagration, it was a spot accursed. 
The secret of the true name, and of the history of 
the Anchorite, was now generally known, and men 
so blended the late events with former offences, as 
to create a theory to satisfy their own longings for 
the marvellous ; though, as is usual in most of these 
cases of supernatural agency, it might not have 
stood the test of a severe logical and philosophical 

During the night which succeeded the return of 
the pilgrims, there had been a grave consultation 
among the civic authorities, on the subject of all 
these extraordinary tales and spectacles. The alarm 
had reached an inconvenient point, and the best 
manner of quieting it was now gravely debated. 
There was not a burgher present at the discussion, 
who felt himself free from the general uneasiness ; 
but men, and especially men in authority, ordinarily 
choose to affect a confidence they are frequently far 
from feeling. In this spirit, then, was the matter dis 
cussed and decided. We shall refer to the succeed 
ing events for the explanation. 

Just as the sun began to shed his warmth into th3 
valley, the people of Deurckheim, with few excep 
tions, collected without that gate which the Count 
of Hartenburg had so unceremoniously forced. Here 


.hey were marshalled by citizens appointed to that 
duty, in the usual order of a religious procession. 
In front went the pilgrims, to whom an especial vir 
tue was attached, in consequence of their recent 
journey ; then came the parochial clergy, with the 
ordinary emblems of Catholic worship ; the burgh 
ers succeeded, and last of all followed the women 
and children, without much attention to order. When 
all were duly arranged, the crowd proceeded, ac 
companied by a chant of the choristers, and taking 
the direction of Limburg. 

"This is a short pilgrimage, brother Dietrich," 
said the Burgomaster, who in his quality of a Chris 
tian of peculiar savor was still associated with the 
smith, "and little likely to weary the limbs; still 
had the town been as active and true, as we who 
have visited the mountains, this little affair of a few 
barking hounds, and some midnight moans in the 
Abbey ruins, would have been ready settled to our 
hands. But a town without its head, is like a man 
without his reason." 

" You count on an easy deliverance then, honor 
able Heinrich, from this outcry of devils and unbid 
den guests ! For mine own particular exercises, I 
will declare that, though sufficiently foot-sore with 
what hath already been done, I could wish the 
journey were longer, and the enemy more human." 

" Go to, smith ; thou art not to believe above half 
of what thou hast heard. The readiness to give 
faith to idle rumors forms a chief distinction be 
tween the vagrant and the householder the man of 
weakness, and the man of wisdom. Were it decent, 
between a magistrate and an artisan, I would hold 
thee some hazard of coin, now, that this affair turns 
out very different from what thou expectest ; and I 
do not account thee, Dietrich, an every-day swaJ- 
lowei of lies." 


" If your worship would but hint what a 
dealing man ought in truth to believe ?" 

" Why look you, smith, here is all that I expect 
from the inquiry, though we hunt and exercise for a 
month. It will be found that there is no pack of 
hounds at all, loose or in leash, but at most a dog or 
two, that may be beset or not, as the case shall 
prove , next, thou wilt see that this tale of Father 
Johan chasing young Berchthold, while the boy 
hunts a roe-buck, is altogether an invention, since 
the monk was the last man to give loose to such a 
scampering, noisy device ; as for the Forester, my 
life on it, his appearance too will end in footmarks, 
or perhaps some other modest sign that he desires 
the masses refused by the Benedictines ; for I know 
not the youth that would be less likely needlessly to 
disturb a neighborhood, with his own particular 
concerns, than Berchthold Hintermayer, living or 

A general start, and a common murmur among 
his companions, caused Heinrich to terminate his 
explanations. The head of the procession had reach 
ed the gorge, and, as it was about to turn into the 
valley, the trampling of many hoofs became audi 
ble. Feelings so highly wrought were easily excited 
to a painful degree, and the common expectation, 
for the moment, seemed to be some supernatural 
exhibition. A whirlwind of dust swept round the 
point of the hill, and Count Emich, with a train of 
well-mounted followers, appeared from its cloud. It 
was so common to meet religious processions of 
this nature, that the Count would not have mani 
fested surprise, had he been ignorant of the motive 
which induced the population of Deurckheim to 
quit its walls ; but, already apprized of their inten 
tions, he hastily dismounted and approached the 
Burgomaster, cap in hand. 
"Thou goest to exercise, worshipful Emich," he said 


" and love for my town hath quickened our steps, 
that no honor or attention should be wanting to those 
J love. hast a place among thy pilgrims, for a poor 
baron and his friends ? 

The offer was gladly accepted, courage being 
quickened by every appearance of succor. Emich, 
though equipped as a cavalier, was therefore wil 
lingly received among his fellow-travellers. The 
delay caused by this interruption ended, the proces 
sion, or rather the throng, for eagerness and anxiety 
and curiosity had nearly broken all order, proceeded 
towards the ascent of the mountain. 

The ruins of Limburg, then recent and still black 
ened with smoke, were found in the deep silence 
of utter desertion. To judge from appearances, not 
a footstep had trodden them, since the moment when 
the band of the assailants had last poured through the 
gates, after a tumultuous triumph which had been 
so chilled by the awful catastrophe of the falling 
roofs. If that party had drawn near the Abbey in 
expectation of a sudden and furious assault, this 
slowly advanced with a troubled apprehension of 
witnessing some fearful manifestation of superhuman 
power. Both were disappointed. The unresisted 
success of the assailants is known, and the proces 
sion now proceeded with the same impunity ; though 
many a voice faltered in the chant as they entered 
the spoiled and desolate church. Nothing however 
occurred to justify their alarm. 

Encouraged by this pacific tranquillity, and desi 
rous of giving proofs of their personal superiority to 
vulgar terrors, the Count and Heinrich commanded 
the throng to remain in the great aisle of the church, 
while they proceeded together into the choir. They 
found the usual evidences of a fierce conflagration 
at every step, but nothing to create surprise, until 
they arrived at the mouldering altar. 

" Himmel !" exclaimed the Burgomaster, hastily 


back his noble friend by the cloak, " Youf 
foot was about to do disreverence to the bones of a 
Christian, my Lord Count ! For Christian Father 
Johan was, beyond all question, though one more 
given to damnation than to charity." 

Emich recoiled, for he saw in truth, that with 
heedless step, he had been near crushing these re 
volting remnants of mortality. 

" Here died a wild enthusiast !" he said, moving 
the skeleton with the point of his sheathed sword. 

"And here he is still, nobly-born Graf! This set 
tles the question of the monk chasing young Berch- 
thold through the forest, and among the cedars c 
the Heidenmauer, and it would be well to show these 
remains to the people." 

The hint was improved, and the throng was sum 
moned to bear witness, that the bones of Johan still 
lay on the precise spot, in which he had died. While 
the curious and the timid were whispering their opi 
nions of this discovery, the two leaders descended to 
the crypt. 

This portion of the edifice had suffered least by 
the fire. Protected by the superior pavement, and 
constructed altogether of stone, it had received no 
very material injury, but that which had been in 
flicted by the sledges of the invaders. Fragments 
of the tombs lay scattered on every side, and here 
and there a wreath of smoke had left its mark upon 
a wall ; but Emich saw with regret, that he owed 
the demolition of the altar, and of the other memo 
rials of his race, entirely to his own precipitation. 

" I will cause the bones of my fathers to be in 
terred elsewhere," he said, musingly ; " this is no 
sepulchre for an honored stock !" 

" Umph ! They have long and creditably decayed 
where they lie, Herr Emich, and it would have been 
well had they been left beneath the cover of their 
ancient marbles; but our artisans showed unusual 


agility in this part of their toil, in honor, no doubt, 
of an illustrious house." 

" None of my race shall sleep within walls ac 
cursed by Benedictines ! Hark ! what movement 
is that above, good Heinrich ?" 

** The townsmen have doubtless fallen upon tfr e 
bones of the hermit, and of young Berchthold. 
Shall we go up, Lord Count, and see that fitting 
reverence be paid their remains? The Forester 
has claims upon us all, and as for Odo Von Ritter- 
stein, his crime would be deemed all the lighter in 
these days, moreover he was betrothed to Ulrike in 
their youth." 

" Heinrich, thy wife was very fair ; she had 
many suitors !" 

" I cry your mercy, noble Count ; I never heard 
but of poor Odo, and myself. The former was put 
out of the question by his own madness, and as for the 
latter, he is such as Heaven was pleased to make him : 
an indifferent lover and husband if you will, but a 
man of some credit and substance among his equals." 

The Count did not care to dispute the possession 
of these qualities with his friend, and they left the 
crypt, with a common desire to pay proper respect 
to the remains of poor Berchthold. To their mutual 
surprise the church was found deserted. By the 
clamor of voices without, however, it was easy to 
perceive that some extraordinary incident had drawn 
away the members ef the procession, in a body. 
Curious to have SA violent an interruption of the pro 
ceedings explained, the two chiefs, for Heinrich was 
still entitled to be so styled, hastened down the great 
aisle, picking their way among fallen fragments, to 
wards the great door- Near the latter, they were 
again shocked by the spectacle of the charred skele 
ton of Johan, which seemingly had been dropped under 
the impulse of some sudden and great confusion. 

" Himmel !" muttered the Burgomaster, while he 


hurried after his leader, " they have deserted the 
bones of the Benedictine ! can it be, Lord Emich, 
that some fiery miracle, after all our unbelief, hath 
wrought this fear ?" 

Emich made no reply, but issued into the court 
with the air of an offended master. The first glimpse, 
however, that he caught of the group, which now 
thronged the ruined walls of the minor buildings, 
whence there was a view of the surrounding coun 
try, and particularly of parts of the adjacent hill of 
the Heidenmauer, convinced him that the present 
was no moment to exhibit displeasure. Climbing up 
a piece of fallen stone-work, he found himself on a 
fragment of wall, surrounded by fifty silent, wonder 
ing countenances, among whom he recognised seve 
ral of his own most trusty followers. 

" Whatmeaneth this disrespect of the service, and 
so sudden an abandonment of the remains of the 
monk ? demanded the baron, vainly looking about 
him, in the hope of finding some quicker explanation 
by means of his own eyes. 

" Hath not my Lord the Count seen and heard ?" 
muttered the nearest vassal. 

" What knave ? I have seen nought, but pallid 
and frightened fools, nor heard more than beating 
hearts ! Wilt thou explain this, varlet for, though 
something of a rogue, thou, at least, art no coward V 

Emich addressed himself to Gottlob. 

" It may not be so easy of explanation as is thought, 
Lord Count," returned the cow-herd gravely : " the 
people have come hither with this speed, inasmuch 
as the cries of the supernatural dogs have been heard, 
and some say the person of poor Berchthold hath 
been again seen !" 

The Count smiled contemptuously, though he knew 
the speaker sufficiently well to be surprised at the 
concern which was very unequivocally painted in 
his face. 


" Thou wert attached to my Forester?" 

" Lord Emich, we were friends, if one of so humble 
station may use the word, when speaking of a youth 
that served so near the person of our master. Like 
his, my own family once knew better days, and we 
often met in the chase, which I was wont to cross, 
coming or going to the pastures. I loved poor 
Berchthold, nobly-born Count, and still love his 

" I believe thou hast better stuff in thee, than some 
idle and silly deeds would give reason to believe. 1 
have remembered thy good will on various occasions, 
and especially thy cleverness in making the signals, 
on the night these walls were overturned, and thou 
wilt find thyself named to the employment left vacant 
by my late Forester s unhappy end." 

Gottlob endeavored to thank his master, but he 
was too much troubled by real grief for the loss 
of his friend, to find consolation in his own prefer 

" My services are my Lord Count s," he answered, 
" but, though ready to do as commanded, I could 
well wish that Berchthold were here to do that for 
me, which " 

" Listen ! Hark !" cried a hundred voices. 

Emich started, and bent forward in fixed attention. 
The day was clear and cloudless, and the air of the 
hills pure as a genial breeze and a bright sun could 
bestow. Favored by such circumstances, and amid 
a silence that was breathing and eloquent, there were 
borne across the valley the well known cries of 
hounds on the scent. In that region and age, none 
dared hunt, and indeed none possessed the means of 
hunting, but the feudal Lord. Since the late events, 
his chases had been unentered with this view, and 
the death of Berchthold, who had especial privileges 
in this respect, had left them without another who 
might dare to imitate his habits. 


" This is at least bold !" said Emich, when the 
cries had passed away : " hath any other near dogs 
of that noble breed 1" 

" We never heard of other !" 

" None would dare use them ;" were the answers. 

" I know those throats they are, of a certainty, 
the favorite hounds of my poor Forester ! Have not 
the dogs escaped the leash, to play their gambols at 
will among the deer ?" 

" In that case, Lord Count, would tried hounds re 
main abroad for weeks ?" answered Gottlob. " It is 
now a sennight since these cries have been first 
heard, and yet no one has seen the dogs, from that 
hour to this, unless as some one of our hinds says, 
they have in sooth been seen running madly on the 

" Tis said, mein Herr Graf," put in another, " that 
Berchthold, himself, hath been viewed in their com 
pany, his garments floating in the wind, while he 
flew along, keeping even pace with the dogs, an he 
had been swift of foot as they !" 

" With Father Johan at his heels, cowl undone, 
and robe streaming like a penon, by way of religious 
amusement!" added the Count, laughing. "Dost 
not see, dotard, that the crackling bones of thy monk 
are still in the ruin V 9 

The hind was daunted by his master s manner, 
but nothing convinced. There then succeeded a 
long and expecting silence, for this little by -play near 
the Count had not in the least affected the solemn 
attention of the mass. At length the throats of these 
mysterious dogs again opened, and the cries indeed 
appeared like those of hounds rushing from beneath 
the cover of woods into the open air. In a few mo 
ments they were repeated, and beyond all dispute, 
they were now upon the open heath that surrounded 
the Teufelstein. The crisis grew alarming for the 
local superstitions of such a place, in the commence- 


trcnt of the sixteenth century. Even Emich wa 
vered. Though he had a vague perception of the in 
consistency of living dogs being hunted by a dead 
Forester, still there were so many iweans of getting 
over this immaterial difficulty, when the greater 
point of the supernatural chase was admitted, that 
he found little relief in the objection. Descending 
from the wall, he was in the act of beckoning the 
priests and Heinrich to his side, when a general shout 
arose among the male spectators, while the women 
rushed in a body around Ulrike, who was kneeling, 
with Lottchen and Meta, before the great crucifix 
of the ancient court of the convent. In the twink 
ling of an eye, Emich re-occupied his place on the 
wall, which shook with the impetus of his heavy 

" What meaneth this disrespectful tumult ?" an 
grily demanded the baron, 

"The hounds! mein Heir Graf! the hounds r 
answered fifty breathless peasants, 

44 Explain this outcry, Gottbb," 

" My Lord Count, we have seen the dogs leaping 
past yonder margin of the hill, here, just in a line 
with the spot where the Teufelstein lies. I know 
the dear animals well, Herr Emich, and believe me, 
they are truly the old favourites of Berchthold." 

** And Berchthold !" continued one or two of the 
more decided lovers of the marvellous, " we saw 
the late Forester, great Emich, bounding after the 
dogs an he had wings !" 

The matter grew serious, and the Count slowly 
descended to the court, determined to bring the af 
fair to some speedy explanation. 



* By the Apostle Pan),, shadows to-night 

Have struck more terror to the soul of Richard, 

Than can the substance of ten thousand soldiers " 

Richard III. 

THE consultation that now took place was b& 
tween the principal laymen. The connection which 
the Church had so long maintained with supernatural 
agencies, determined Enrich, who was jealous of its 
again obtaining its lost ascendency in that country, 
to exclude the officiating priests altogether from the 
decision he was about to take. Were we to say that 
the Count of Hartenburg gave full faith to the ru 
mors concerning the spirit of his late Forester, having 
been seen engaged in the chase, as when in the flesh, 
we should probably not do entire credit to his intelli 
gence and habits of thinking, but were we to say, 
that he was altogether free from superstition and 
alarm on this difficult point, we should attribute to 
him a degree of philosophy and a mental indepen 
dence, which in that age was the property only of 
the learned and reflecting, and not always even of 
them. Astrology, in particular, had taken strong 
hold of the imaginations of those who even pretended 
to general science ; and when the mind once admits 
of theories of a character so little in accordance with 
homely reason, it opens the avenues to a multitude 
of collateral weaknesses of the same nature, which 
seem to follow as the necessary corollaries of the 
main proposition. 

The necessity of a prompt solution of the question 
was admitted by all of those whom the Count consulted. 
Many had begun to whisper that the extraordinary 
visitation was a consequence of the sacrilege, and that 
it was hopeless to expect peace, or exemption from 
supernatural plagues, until the Benedictines were 


to their Abbey and their former rights 
Though Enrich felt convinced that this idea came 
originally from the monks, through some of their 
secret and paid agents, he saw no manner of defeat 
ing it so effectually as that of demonstrating the fal 
sity of the rumor. In our time, and in this land, a 
weapon thit was forged by a miracle, would be apt 
to become useless of itself; but in the other hemi 
sphere, there still exist entire countries, that are yet 
partially governed by agents of this description. At 
the period of the tale, the public mind was so unin- 
structed and dependent, that the very men who were 
most interested in defeating the popular delirium of 
the hour, had great difficulty in overcoming their 
own doubts. It has been seen that Enrich, though 
much disposed to throw off the dominion of the 
Church, so far clung to his ancient prejudices, as se 
cretly to distrust the very power he was about to 
defy, and to entertain grave scruples not only of the 
policy, but of the lawfulness of the step his ambition 
had urged him to adopt. In this manner does man 
become the instrument of the various passions and 
motives that beset him, now yielding, or now strug 
gling to resist, as a stronger inducement is presented 
to his mind ; always professing to be governed by 
reason and constrained by principles, while in truth 
he rarely consents to consult the one, or to respect the 
other, until both are offered through the direct me 
dium of some engrossing interest, that requires an 
immediate and active attention. Then indeed his 
faculties become suddenly enlightened, and he eagerly 
presses into his service every argument that offers, 
the plausible as well as the sound ; and thus it hap 
pens that we frequently see whole communities 
making a moral pirouette in a breath, adopting this 
year a set of principles that are quite in opposition 
to all they had ever before professed. Fortunately, 
all that is thus gained on sound principles is apt to 
2 P 


continue, since whatever may be the waywardness of 
those who profess them, principles themselves are im 
mutable, and when once fairly admitted, are not easily 
dispossessed by the bastard doctrines of expediency 
and error. These changes are gradual as respect 
those avant-couriers of thought, who prepare the 
way for the advance of nations, but who, in general, 
so far precede their contemporaries, as to be utterly 
out of view at the effectual moment of the reforma 
tion, or revolution, or by whatever name these sudden 
summersets are styled; but as respects the mass, they 
often occur by a coup-de-main; an entire people awak 
ening, as it were, by magic, to the virtues of a new 
set of maxims, much as the eye turns from the view 
of one scenic representation to that of its successor. 
Our object in this tale is, to represent society, 
under its ordinary faces, in the act of passing from 
the influence of one set of governing principles to 
that of another. Had our efforts been confined to 
the workings of a single and a master mind, the pic 
ture, however true as regards the individual, would 
have been false in reference to a community ; since 
such a study would have been no more than fol 
lowing out the deductions of philosophy and reason 
something the worse, perhaps, for its connection 
with humanity ; whereas, he that would represent 
the world, or any material portion of the world, 
must draw the passions and the more vulgar inter 
ests in the boldest colors, and be content with pour- 
traying the intellectual part, in a very subdued 
background. We know not that any will be disposed 
to make the reflection that our labors are intended 
to suggest, and without which they will scarcely 
be useful; but, while we admit the imperfection of 
what has been here done, we feel satisfied that he 
who does consider it coolly and in candor, will be 
disposed to allow, that our picture is sufficiently 
true for its object. 


We have written in vain, should it now be neces 
sary to dwell on the nature of the misgivings that 
harassed the minds of the Count and Heinrich, as 
they descended the hill of Limburg, at the head of 
the new procession. Policy, and the determination 
to secure advantages that had been so dearly ob 
tained, urged them on ; while doubt and all the pro 
geny of ancient prejudices, contributed to their dis 

The people advanced much in the same order as 
that in which they had ascended to the ruins of the 
Abbey. The pilgrims were in front, followed closely by 
the parochial priests, and their choirs ; while the rest 
succeed in an eager, trembling, curious, and devout 
crowd. Religious change existed, as yet, rather in doc- 
trine,and among the few, than in the practices of the 
many ; and all the rites, it will be remembered, were 
those usually observed by the church of Rome on an 
occasion of exorcism, or of an especial supplication 
to be released from a mysterious display of Heaven s 
displeasure. The Count and Heinrich, as became their 
stations, walked boldly in advance ; for, whatever 
might have been the extent and nature of their dis 
trust, it was wisely and successfully concealed from 
all but themselves even the worthy Burgomaster 
entertained a respectful opinion of the Noble s firm 
ness, and the latter much wondering at a man of 
Heinrich s education and habits of life, being able 
to show a resolution that he thought more properly 
belonged to philosophy. They passed up towards the 
plain of the Heidenmauer, by the hollow way that has 
already been twice mentioned in these pages once 
in the Introduction, and again, as the path by which 
Ulrike descended on her way to the Abbey, on the 
night of its destruction. Until near the summit, no 
thing occurred to create new uneasiness ; and as the 
choristers increased the depth of their chant, the 
leader began to feel a vague hope of escaping from 


farther interruption. As the moments passed, the 
Count breathed freer, and he already fancied that 
he had proved the Heidenmauer to be a spot as 
harmless as any other in the Palatinate. 

" You have often pricked courser over this \vild 
common of the Devil, noble and fearless Count," 
said Heinrich, when they drew near the margin of 
the superior plain " One so accustomed to its view 
is not easily troubled by the cries and vagaries of a 
leash of uneasy dogs, though they might be kenneled 
beneath the shade of the Teufelstein !" 

" Thou mayest well say often, good Heinrich 
When but an urchin, my excellent father was wont 
to train his chargers on this height, and it was often 
my pleasure to be of the party. Then our hunts 
frequently drove the deer from the cover of the 
chases to this open ground " 

The Count paused, for a swift, pattering rush, like 
that of the feet of hounds beating the ground, was 
audible, just above their heads, though the edge of 
the mountain still kept the face of the level ground 
from being seen. Spite of their resolution, the two 
leaders came to a dead halt a delay which those in 
the rear were compelled to imitate. 

" The common hath its tenants, Herr Frey," said 
Emich, gravely, but in a tone of a man resolute to 
struggle for his rights ; " it will soon be seen if they 
are disposed to admit the sovereignty of their feudal 

Without waiting for an answer, the Count spite 
of himself muttered an ave, and mounted with sturdy 
limbs to the summit. The first glance was rapid, 
uneasy, and distrustful ; but nothing rewarded the 
look. The naked rock of the Teufelstein lay in 
the ancient bed where it had probably been left, 
by some revolution of the earth s crust, three thou 
sand years before gray, solitary, and weather-worn 
as at this hour; the grassy common had not a hoof 


or foot over the whole of its surface ; and the cedars 
of the deserted camp sighed in the breeze, as usual, 
dark, melancholy, and suited to the traditions which 
had given them interest. 

"Here is nothing!" said the Count, drawing a 
heavy breath, which he would fain ascribe to the 
difficulty of the ascent. 

" Herr von Hartenburg, God is here, as he is among 
the hills we have lately quitted on that fair and 
wide plain below and in thy hold ! " 

"Prithee, good Ulrike, we will of this another 
time. We touch now on the destruction of a silly 
legend, and of some recent alarms." 

At a wave of his hand the procession proceeded 
taking the direction of the ancient gateway of the 
camp, the choir renewing its chant, and the same 
leaders always in advance. 

It is not necessary to say that the Heidenmauer 
was approached, on this solemn occasion, with beat 
ing hearts. No man of reflection and proper feeling 
can ever visit a spot like this, without fancying a 
picture that is fraught with pleasing melancholy. 
The certainty that he has before his eyes the remains 
of a work, raised by the hands of beings who existed 
so many centuries before him in that great chain of 
events which unites the past with the present, and 
that his feet tread earth that has been trodden 
equally by the Roman and the Hun, is sufficient of 
itself to raise a train of thought allied to the won 
derful and grand. But to these certain and natural 
sensations was now added a dread of omnipotence 
and the apprehension of instantly witnessing some 
supernatural effect. 

Not a word was uttered, until Emich and the Bur- 
gomaster turned to pass the pile of stones which 
mark the position of the ancient wall, by means of 
the gateway already named, when the former, en 
couraged by the tranquillity, again spoke. 


" The ear is often a treacherous companion, friend 
Burgomaster," he said, " and like the tongue, unless 
duly watched, may lead to misunderstandings. No 
doubt we both thought, at the moment, that we 
heard the Feet of hounds beating the earth, as on a 
hunt ; thou now seest, by means of one sense, that 
the other hath served us false. But we approach 
the end of our little pilgrimage, and we will halt, 
while I speak the people in explanation of our opi 
nions and intentions." 

Heinrich gave the signal, and the choir ceased its 
chant, while the crowd drew near to listen. The 
Count both saw and felt that he touched the real 
crisis, in the furtherance of his own views, as op 
posed to those of the brotherhood, and he determined, 
by a severe effort, not only to overcome his enemies, 
but himself. In this mood, he spoke. 

" Ye are here, my honest friends and vassals," he 
commenced, " both as the faithful who respect the 
usefulness of the altar when rightly served, and as 
men who are disposed to see and judge for themselves. 
This camp, as ye witness by its remains, was once 
occupied by armed bands of warriors who, in their 
day, fought and fortified, suffered and were happy, 
bled and died, conquered or were vanquished, much 
as we see those who carry arms in our own time, 
perform these several acts, or submit to these several 
misfortunes. The report that their spirits frequent 
the spot, is as little likely to be true, as that the spirits 
uf all who have fallen with arms in their hands remain 
near the earth that hath swallowed their blood ; a 
belief that would leave no place in our fair Pa 
latinate without its ghostly tenant. As for this late 
alarm, concerning my Forester, poor Berchthold Hin- 
termayer, it is the less probable from the character 
of the youth, who well knew when living the dis 
relish I have felt for all such tales, and my particular 
desire to banish them altogether from the Jaegerthal, 


as well as from his known modesty and dutiful obe 
dience. You see plainly that here are no dogs " 

Enrich met with a startling contradiction. Just 
as his tongue, which was getting fluent with the im 
punity that had so far attended his declarations, 
uttered the latter word, the long drawn cries of 
hounds were heard. Fifty strong German exclama 
tions escaped the crowd, which waved like a troubled 
sea. The sounds came from among the trees in the 
very centre of the dreaded Heidenmauer, and seemed 
only the more unearthly from rising beneath that 
gloomy canopy of cedars. 

" Let us go on !" cried the Count, excited nearly 
to madness, and seizing the handle of his sword with 
iron grasp. " Tis but a hound ! Some miscreant 
hath loosened the dog from his leash, and he scents the 
footsteps of his late master, who had the habit of 
visiting the holy hermit that dwelt here of late " 

" Hush !" interrupted Lottchen, advancing hur 
riedly, and with a wild eye, from the throng of fe 
males. " God is about to reveal his power, for some 
great end ? I know I know that footstep " 

She was fearfully interrupted, for while speaking, 
the hounds rushed out of the grove, in the swift, mad 
manner common to the animal, and made a rapid 
circuit around the form of the dazzled and giddy 
woman. In the next moment, a tottering wall gave 
way to the powerful leap of a human foot, and Lott 
chen lay senseless on the bosom of her son ! 

We draw a veil before the sudden fear, the gene 
ral surprise, the tears, the delight, and the more re 
gulated joy of the next hour. 

At the end of that period, the scene had altogether 
changed. The chant was ended, the order of the 
procession was forgotten, and a burning curiosity 
had taken place of all sensations of superstitious 
dread. But the authority of Enrich had driven the 
crowd back upon the common of the Teufelstein, 


where it was compelled to content itself, for the mo 
ment, with conjectures, and with tales of similar 
sudden changes from the incarnate to the carnate, 
that were reputed to have taken place in the event 
ful history of the borders of the Rhine. 

The principal group of actors had retired a little 
within the cover of the cedars, where, favoured by 
the walls and the trees, they remained unseen from 
without. Young Berchthold was seated on a frag 
ment of fallen wall, supporting his still half incre 
dulous mother in his arms, a position which he had 
received the Count s peremptory, but kind orders to 
occupy. Meta was kneeling before Lottchen, whose 
hand she held in her own, though the bright eye and 
glowing face of the girl followed, with undisguised 
and ingenuous interest, every glance and movement 
of the countenance of the youth. The emotions 
of that hour were too powerful for concealment, and 
had there been any secret concerning her sentiments, 
surprise and the sudden burst of feeling that was its 
consequence, would have wrung it from her heart. 
Ulrike kneeled too, supporting the head of her friend, 
but smiling and happy. The Knight of Rhodes, the 
Abbe, Heinrich and the smith paced back and forth, 
s sentinels to keep the curious at a distance, though 
occasionally stopping to catch sentences of the dis 
course. Emich leaned on his sword, rejoicing that 
his apprehensions were groundless, and we should 
do injustice to his rude but not ungenerous feelings,, 
did we not say, glad to find that Berchthold was 
still in the flesh. When we add, that the dogs 
played their frisky gambols around the crowd on the 
common, which could hardly yet believe in their 
earthly character, our picture is finished. 

The deserving of this world may be divided into 
two great classes ; the actively and the passively 
good. Ulrike belonged to the former, for though she 
felt as strongly as most others, an instinctive recti 


tude rarely failed to suggest some affirmative duty 
for every crisis that arrived. It was she, then, (and 
we here beg to tell the reader plainly, she is our 
heroine,) that gave such a direction to the discourse 
as was most likely to explain what was unknown, 
without harassing anew feelings that had been so 
long and so sorely tried. 

" And thou art now absolved from thy vow, 
Berchthold ?" she asked, after one of those short in 
terruptions, in which the exquisite happiness of such 
a meeting was best expressed by silent sympathy. 
* The Benedictines have no longer any claim to thy 
silence 1" 

" They set the return of the pilgrims as their 
own period, and, as I first learned the agreeable 
tidings by seeing you all in the procession, I had 
called in the hounds, who were scouring the chase, 
and was about to hurry down to present myself, 
when I met you all at the gateway of the camp. 
Our meeting would have taken place in the valley, 
but that duty required me first to visit the Herr Odo 
Von Ritterstein " 

" The Herr Von Ritterstein !" exclaimed Ulrike, 
turning pale. 

* What of my ancient comrade, the Herr Odo, 
boy ?" demanded Emich. " This is the first we have 
heard of him since the night the abbey fell." 

" I have told my tale badly," returned Berchthold, 
laughing and blushing, for he was neither too old 
nor too practised to blush, " since I have forgotten 
to name the Herr Odo." 

" Thou told us of a companion," rejoined his mo 
ther, glancing a look at Ulrike, and raising herself 
from the support of her son, instinctively alive to 
her friend s embarrassment, " but thou called him 
merely a religious." 

" I should have said the holy Hermit, whom all 
now know to be the Baron Von Ritterstein. When 


obliged to fly from the falling roof, I met the Herr 
Odo kneeling before an altar, and recalling the form 
of one who had shown me much favour, it was he 
that I dragged with me to the crypt. I surely spoke 
of our wounds and helplessness!" 

" True ; but without naming thy companion." 

" It was the Herr Odo, Heaven be praised ! 
When the monks found us, on the following day 
unable to resist, and weakened with hunger and loss 
of blood, we were secretly removed together, as ye 
have heard, and cared for in a manner to restore us 
both, in good time, to our strength and to the use 
of our limbs. Why the Benedictines chose to keep 
us secret, I know* not ; but this silly tale of the 
supernatural huntsman, and of dogs loosened from 
their leash, would seem to prove that they had hopes 
of still working on the superstition of the country." 

" Wilhelm of Venloo had nought to do with this !" 
exclaimed Emich, who had been musing deeply. 
" The underlings have continued the game after "it 
was abandoned by their betters." 

" This may be so, my good Lord ; for I thought 
Father Bonifacius more than disposed to let us de 
part. But we were kept until the matters of the 
compensation and of the pilgrimage were settled. 
They found us easy abettors in their plot, if plot to 
work upon the fears of Deurckheim was in their 
policy ; for when they pledged their faith that my 
two mothers and dearest Meta had been let into the 
secret of our safety, I felt no extraordinary haste to 
quit leeches so skilful, and so likely to make a speedy 
cure of our hurts." 

" And did Bonifacius affirm this lie ?" 

" I say not the Abbot, my Lord Count, but most 
certainly the Brothers Cuno and Siegfried said all 
this and more the malediction of a wronged son, 
and of a most foully treated mother" 

His mouth was stopped by the hand of Meta. 


" We will forgive past sorrow for the present joy ;" 
murmured the weeping girl. 

The angry and flushed brow of Berchthold grew 
more calm, and the discourse continued in a gentler 

Emich now walked away to join the Burgomaster, 
and together they endeavoured to penetrate the mo 
tives which had led the monks to practise their de 
ception. In the possession of so effectual a key, the 
solution of the problem was not difficult. The meet 
ing of Bonifacius and the Count at Einsiedlen had 
been maturely planned, and the uncertain state of 
the public mind in the valley and town was encour 
aged, as so much make-weight in the final settlement 
of the Convent s claims ; for in that age, the men of 
the cloisters, knew well how to turn every weakness 
of humanity to good purpose, so far as their own 
interests were concerned. 


Tis over, and her lovely cheek is now 

On her hard pillow Roger$. 

ON the following morning the Count of Hartenburg 
took horse at an early hour. His train, however, 
showed that the journey was to be short. But 
Monsieur Latouche, who mounted in company, wore 
the attire and furniture of a traveller. It was in 
truth the moment when Emich, having used this 
quasi churchman for his own ends, was about to 
dismiss him, with as much courtesy and grace as the 
circumstances seemed to require, Perhaps no picture 
of the different faces presented by a church that 
had so long enjoyed an undisputed monopoly in 
dmstendom, and which, as a consequence, betrayed 
so strong a tendency to abuses, would have been 


complete without some notice of such characters as 
the Knight of the Cross and the Abbe ; and it was, 
moreover, our duty, as faithful chroniclers, to speak 
of things as they existed, although the accessories 
might not have a very capital connection with the 
interest of the principal subject. But here our 
slight relations with the Abbe are to cease altogether, 
his host having treated him, as many politic rulers 
treat others of his profession, purely as the instru 
ment of his own views. Albrecht of Viederbach 
was prepared to accompany his boon associate far 
as Mannheim, but with the intention to return, the 
unsettled state of his order, and his consanguinity 
with the Count, rendering such a course both expe 
dient and agreeable. Young Berchthold, too, was 
in the saddle, his lord having, by especial favour, 
commanded the Forester to keep at his crupper. 

The cavalcade ambled slowly down the Jaegerthal, 
the Count courteously endeavoring to show the de 
parting Abbe, by a species of misty logic that appears 
to be the poetical atmosphere of diplomacy, that he 
was fully justified by circumstances for affecting all 
that had been done, and the latter acquiescing as 
readily in his conclusions, as if he did not feel that 
he had been an egregious dupe. 

" Thou wilt see this matter rightly represented 
among thy friends, Master Latouche," concluded the 
Baron " should there be question of it, at the court 
of thy Francis : whom may Heaven quickly restore 
to his longing people the right valiant and loyal 
Prince and gentleman !" 

" I will take upon myself, high-born and ingenuous 
Emich, to see thee fully justified, whenever there 
shall be discussion of thy great warfare and exquisite 
policy at the court of France. Nay, by the mass ! 
should our jurists, or our statesmen take upon them 
selves to prove to the world that thy house hath been 
wrong in this immortal enterprise, I pledge thee my 


faith to answer their reasons, both logically and po 
litically, to their eternal shame and confusion." 

As Monsieur Latouche uttered this promise with 
an unequivocal sneer, he thought himself fully aveng 
ed, for the silly part he had been made to act in the 
Count s intrigues. At a later day he often told the 
tale, always concluding with a recital of this bold 
and ironical allusion to the petty history of the Jae- 
gerthal, which not only he, but a certain portion of 
his listeners, seemed to think gave him altogether 
the best of the affair. Satisfied with his success, the 
Abbe pricked on, to repeat it to the knight, who 
laughed in his sleeve at his friend while he most ex 
tolled his wit, the two riding ahead in a manner to 
leave Emich an occasion to speak in confidence with 
his Forester. 4 

" Hast treated of this affair with Heinrich, as I bid 
thee, boy ?" demanded the Count, in a manner be 
tween authority and affection, that he was much ac 
customed to use with Berchthold. 

" I have, my Lord Count, and right pressingly, as 
my heart urged, but with little hope of benefit." 

" How ? Doth the silly burgher still count upon 
his marks, after what hath passed ! Didst tell him 
of the interest I take in the marriage, and of my in 
tent to name thee to higher duties, in my villages ?" 

" None of these favors were forgotten, or aught 
else that a keen desire could suggest, or a willing 
memory recall." 

" What answer had the burgher ?" 

Berchthold colored, hesitating to reply. It was 
only when Emich sternly repeated the question, that 
the truth was extorted from him ; for nought but 
truth would one so loyal consent to use. 

* He said, Herr Count, that if it was your pleasure 

to name a husband for his child, it should also be 

your pleasure to see that he was not a beggar. I do 

but give the words of the Herr Frey ; for which 



liberty, I beg my lord to hold me free of all disre 

" The niggardly miser ! These hounds of Deurck 
heim shall be made to know their master But be 
of cheer, boy ; our tears and pilgrimages shall not be 
wasted, and thou shalt soon wive with a fairer and 
better, as becometh him I love." 

" Nay, Herr Emich, I do beseech and implore" 

" Ha ! Yon is the drivelling Heinrich seated on a 
rock of this ravine, like a vidette watching the ma 
rauders ! Prick forward, Berchthold, and desire my 
noble friends to tarry at the Town-Hall making their 
compliments ; as for thee, thou mayest humour thy 
folly, and greet the smiling face of the pretty Meta 
the while." 

The Forester dashed ahead like an arrow : while 
the Count reined his own courser aside, turning into 
that ravine by which the path led to the Heiden- 
mauer, when the ascent was made from the side of 
the valley. Emich was soon at the Burgomaster s 
side, having thrown his bridle to a servitor that fol 

" How is this, brother Heinrich 1" he cried, dis 
pleasure disappearing in habitual policy and well 
practised management " art still bent on exorcism, 
or hast neglected some offices, in yester s pilgrimage?" 

" Praised be St. Benedict, or Brother Luther ! 
for 1 know not fairly to which the merit is most due 
our Deurckheim is in a thrice happy disposition, as 
touching all witchcraft, and devilry, or even churchly 
miracles. This mystery of the hounds being so hap 
pily settled, the public mind seemeth to have taken 
a sudden change, and from sweating in broad day 
light at the nestling of a mouse, or the hop of a 
cricket, our crones are ready to set demonology and 
Lucifer himself at defiance." 

" The lucky clearing up of that difficulty will, in 
sooth, do much to favour the late Saxon opinions 


and may go near to set the monk of Wittenburg 
firmly upon his feet, in our country. Thou seest, 
Hemrich, that a dilemma so unriddled is worth a 
library of musty Latin maxims." 

" That is it, Herr Emich, and the more especially 
as we are a reasoning town. Our minds once fairly 
enlightened, it is no easy matter to throw them into 
the shade again. It was seen how sorely the best 
of us were troubled with a couple of vagrant dogs so 
lately as yesterday, and now I much question if the 
whole of the gallant pack would so much as raise a 
doubt ! We have had a lucky escape, Lord Count, 
for another day of uncertainty would have gone nigh 
to set up Limburg church again, and that without 
the masonry of the devil. There is nought so potent 
in an argument, as a little apprehension of losses or 
of plagues thrown into the scale. Wisdom weighs 
light against profit or fear." 

" It is well as it is, though Limburg roof will never 
again cover Limburg wall, friend Heinrich, while an 
Emich rules in Hartenburg and Deurckheim." The 
Count saw the cloud on the Burgomaster s brow as 
he uttered the latter word, and slapping him fami 
liarly on a shoulder, he added so quickly as to pre 
vent reflection : " But how now, Herr Frey ; why 
art at watch in this solitary ravine ?" 

Heinrich was flattered by the noble s condescen 
sion, and not displeased to have a listener to his 
tale. First looking about him to see that no one 
could overhear their discourse, he answered on a 
lower key, in the manner in which communications 
that needs confidence are usually made. 

" You know, Herr Emich, this weakness of Ulrike, 
concerning hermitages and monks, altars and saints 
days, with all those other practices of which we 
may now reasonably expect to be quit, since late 
rumors speak marvels of Luther s success. Well 
the good woman would have a wish to come upon 


the Heidenmauer this morning, and as there had been 
some warm argument between us, and the poor wife 
had wept much concerning marrying our child with 
young Berchthold, a measure out of all prudence ana 
reason, as you must see, nobly-born Count, I was fain 
willing to escort her thus far, that she might give 
vent to her sorrow in godly discourse with the 

" And Ulrike is above, in the cedars, with the an 
chorite 1" 

" As sure as I am here waiting her return, Lord 

" Thou art a gallant husband, Master Frey ! 
Wert wont of old to resort much with the Herr Odo 
Von Ritterstein he who playeth this masquerade of 
penitence and seclusion 1" 

" Sapperment ! I never could endure the arro 
gant ! But Ulrike fancieth he hath qualities that are 
not so evil, and a woman s taste, like a child s hu 
mors, is easiest altered by giving it scope." 

Emich laid both hands on the shoulders of his 
companion, looking him full and earnestly in the face. 
The glances that were exchanged in this attitude, 
were pregnant with meaning. That of the Count 
expressed the distrust, the contempt, and the wonder 
of a man of loose life, while that of the Burgomas 
ter, by appearing to reflect the character of the 
woman who had so long been his wife, expressed vo 
lumes in her favor. No language could have said 
more for Ulrike s principles and purity, than the 
simple, hearty, and unalterable confidence of the 
man who necessarily had so many opportunities of 
knowing her. Neither spoke, until the Count, re 
leasing his grasp, walked slowly up the mountain^ 
saying in a voice which proved how stroogly he 

I would thy consort had been 


" Nay, my good lord," answered the Burgomaster, 
** the wish were scarcely kind to a friend ! In that 
case, I could not have wived the Frau." 

" Tell me, good Heinrich for I never heard the 
history of thy love wert thou and thy proposal 
well received, when first offered to the virgin heart 
of Herr Hailtzinger s daughter 1 n 

The Burgomaster was not displeased with an op 
portunity of alluding to a success that had made him 
the envy of his equals. 

" The end must speak for the means, Herr Count," 
he answered chuckling. " Ulrike is none of your 
free and froward spirits to jump out of a window, 
or to meet a youth more than half-way, but such 
encouragement as hecometh maiden diffidence was 
not wanting, or mine own ill opinion of myself might 
have kept me a bachelor to this hour." 

Emich chafed to hear such language coming from 
one he so little respected, and applied to one he had 
really loved. The effort to swallow his spleen pro 
duced a short silence, of which we shall avail our 
selves to transfer the scene to the hut of the hermit, 
where there was an interview that proved decisive 
of the future fortunes of several of the characters 
of our tale. 

The day which succeeded the restoration of Berch- 
thold had been one of general joy and felicitation in 
Deurckheim. There was an end to the doubts of 
the timid and superstitious, concerning an especial 
and an angry visitation from Heaven, as a merited 
punishment for overturning the altars of the Abbey, 
and few were so destitute of good feeling, not to 
sympathize in the happiness of those who had so 
bitterly mourned the fancied death of the Forester. 
As is usual in cases of violent transitions, the reac 
tion helped to lessen the influence of the monks, and 
even those most inclined to doubt, were now encou 
raged to hope that the religious change, which was 


so fast gaining ground, might not produce all the hor 
rors that had been dreaded. 

Heinrich has revealed the nature of the discussion 
that took place between himself and his wife. The 
latter had endeavored in vain to seize the favor 
able moment to work upon the feelings of the Bur 
gomaster, in the interests of the lovers ; but, though 
sincerely glad that a youth who had shown such 
mettle in danger was not the victim of his courage, 
Heinrich was not of a temperament to let any ad 
miration of generous deeds affect the settled policy 
of a whole life. It was at the close of this useless 
and painful conference, that the mother suddenly 
demanded permission of her husband to visit the 
hermit, who had been left, as before the recent events, 
in undisturbed possession of the dreaded Heiden- 

Any other than a man constituted like Heinrich 
might, at such a moment, have heard this request 
with distrust. But strong in his opinion of himself, 
and accustomed to confide in his wife, the obstinate 
Burgomaster hailed the application as a means of 
relieving him from a discussion, in which, while he 
scarce knew how plausibly to defend his opinion, he 
was resolutely determined not to yield. The man 
ner in which he volunteered to accompany his wife, 
and in which he remained patiently awaiting her 
return, and the commencement of his dialogue with 
Emich are known. With this short explanation, we 
shall shift the scene to the hut of the Anchorite. 

Odo of Ritterstein was pale with loss of blood 
from the wounds received from a fragment of the 
falling roof, but paler still by the force of that inward 
fire which consumed him. The features of his fair 
and gentle companion were not bright, as usual, 
though nought could rob Ulrike of that winning 
beauty, which owed so much of its charm to ex 
pression. Both appeared agitated with what had 


already passed between them, and perhaps still more 
by those feelings, which each had struggled to conceal. 
" Thou hast indeed had many moving passages in 
thy life, Odo," said the gentle Ulrike, who was seem 
ingly listening to some recital from the other s lips ; 
" and this last miraculous escape from death is among 
the most wonderful." 

" That I should have perished beneath the roof 
of Limburg, on the anniversary of my crime, and 
with the fall of those altars I violated, would have 
been so just a manifestation of Heaven s displeasure, 
Ulrike, that even now I can scarce believe I am per 
mitted to live ! Thou then thought in common witfc 
others, that I had been released from this life of 

" Thou lookest with an unthankful eye at what 
thou hast of hope and favor, or thou wouldst not 
use a term so ungrateful in speaking of thy sorrows. 
Remember, Odo, that our joys, in this being, are 
tainted with mortality, and that thy unhappiness 
does not surpass that of thousands who still struggle 
with their duties." 

" This is the difference between the unquiet ocean 
and tranquil waters between the oak and the reed ! 
The current of thy calm existence may be ruffled 
by the casual interruption of some trifling obstacle, 
but the gentle surface soon subsides, leaving the ele 
ment limpid and without stain 1 Thy course is that 
of the flowing and pure spring, while mine is the 
torrent s mad and turbulent leaps. Thou hast indeed 
well said, Ulrike, God did not form us for each 
other !" 

" Whatever nature may have done towards suit 
ing our dispositions and desires, Odo, Providence and 
the world s usages have interposed to defeat." 

The hermit gazed at the mild speaker with eyes 
so fixed and dazzling, that she bowed her own look 
to the earth. 


" No," he murmured rapidly, " Heaven and earth 
have different destinies the lion and the lamb dif 
ferent instincts !" 

" Nay, 1 will none of this disreputable deprecia 
tion of thyself, poor Odo. That thou hast been err 
ing, we shall not deny for who is without re 
proach ? but that thou meritest these harsh epithets, 
none but thyself would venture to affirm." 

" I have met with many enigmas, Ulrike, in an 
eventful and busy life I have seen those who work 
ed both good and evil encountered those who have 
defeated their own ends by their own wayward 
means but never have I known one so devoted to 
the right, that seemed so disposed to extenuate the 
sinner s faults !" 

" Then hast thou never met the true lover of God 
or known a Christian. It matters not, Odo, whether 
we admit of this or that form of faith the fruit of 
the right tree is charity and self-abasement, and 
these teach us to think humbly of ourselves and 
kindly of others." 

" Thou began early to practise these golden rules, 
or surely thou never wouldst have forgotten thine 
own excellence, or have been ready to sacrifice it to 
the heedless impulses of one so reckless as him to 
whom thou wast betrothed 1" 

The eye of Ulrike grew brighter, but it was merely 
because a tinge of color diffused itself on her features. 

" I know not for what good purpose, Herr Von 
Ritterstein," she said, " that these allusions are now 
made. You know that I have come to make a last 
effort to secure the peace of Meta. Berchthold spoke 
to me of your intention to reward the service he did 
your life, and I have now to say, that if in ought 
you can do the youth favor, the moment when it 
will be most acceptable, hath come for Lottchen 
has been too sorely stricken to bear up long against 
further grief." 


The Hermit was reproved. He turned slowly to 
one of his receptacles of worldly stores, and drew 
forth a packet. The rattling told his companion 
that it was of parchment, and she waited the result 
with curious interest. 

" I will scarce say, Ulrike," he replied, "that this 
deed is the price of a life that is scarce worth the gift. 
Early in my acquaintance with young Berchthold 
and Meta, I wrung their secret from them ; and from 
that moment it hath heen my greatest pleasure to 
devise means to secure the happiness of one so dear to 
thee. I found in the child, the simple, ingenuous faith 
which was so admirable in the mother, and shall 1 
say that reverence for the latter quickened the de 
sire to serve her offspring ?" 

" I certainly owe thee thanks, Herr Von Ritter- 
stein, for the constancy of this good opinion," re 
turned Ulrike, showing sensibility. 

" Thank me not, but rather deem the desire to 
serve thy child a tribute that repentant error gladly 
pays to virtue. Thou knowest that I am the last of 
my race, and there remained nought but to endow 
some religious house, to let my estate and gold pass 
to the feudal prince, or to do this." 

" I could not have thought it easy to effect this 
change, in opposition to the Elector s interests !" 

" Those have been looked to ; a present fine has 
smoothed the way, and these parchments contain all 
that is necessary to install young Berchthold as my 
substitute and heir." 

** Friend ! dear, generous friend !" exclaimed the 
mother, moved to tears, for, at that moment, Ulrike 
saw nothing but the future happiness of her child as 
sured, and Berchthold restored to more than his 
former hopes " generous and noble Odo 1" 

The hermit arose, and placed the parchment in 
her hand, in the manner of one long prepared to per * 
form the act. 


" And now, Ulrike," he said with a forced calm, 
" this solemn and imperative duty done, there re 
maineth but the last leave-taking." 

" Leave-taking ! Thou wilt live with Meta and 
Berchthold, the castle of Ritterstein will he thy 
resting-place, after so much sorrow and suffering 1" 

" This may not be my vow my duties Ulrike, 
I fear, my prudence forbids." 

"Thy prudence! Thou art no longer young, 
dear Odo, privations thou hast hitherto despised 
will overload thy increasing years, and we shall not 
be happy with the knowledge that thou art suffer 
ing for the very conveniences which thine own libe 
rality hath conferred on others." 

" Habit hath taken nature s place, and the her 
mitage and the camp are no longer strangers to me. 
If thou wouldst secure not only my peace, but my 
salvation, Ulrike, let me depart. I have already lin 
gered too long near a scene which is filled with recol 
lections that prove dread enemies to the penitent." 

Ulrike recoiled, and her cheek blanched to pale 
ness. Every limb trembled, for that quick sympathy, 
which neither time nor duty had entirely extinguish 
ed, silently admonished her of his meaning. There 
was a fervor in his voice, too, that thrilled on her 
ear like tones which, spite of all her care, the truant 
imagination would sometimes recall ; for, in no sub 
sequent condition of life, can a woman entirely for 
get the long cherished sounds with which true love 
first greets the maiden ear. 

" Odo," said a voice so gentle that it caused the 
heart of the anchorite to beat, " when dost thou think 
to depart V 9 

" This day this hour this minute." 

" I believe yes, thou art right to go !" 

" Ulrike, God will keep thee in mind. Pray often 
for me." 

" Farewell, dear Odo." 


" God bless thee may he have mercy on me !" 

There was then a short pause. The hermit ap 
proached and lifted his hands in the attitude of bene 
diction ; twice he seemed about to clasp the unre 
sisting Ulrike to his bosom, but her meek, tearful 
countenance repressed the act, and, muttering a 
prayer, he rushed from the hut. Left to herself, 
Ulrike sank on a stool, and remained like an image 
of wo, tears flowing in streams down her cheeks. 

Some minutes elapsed before the wife of Hein- 
rich Frey was aroused from her forgetfulness. Then 
the approach of footsteps told her that she was no 
longer alone. For the first time in her life, Ulrike 
endeavored to conceal her emotion with a sentiment 
of shame : but ere this could be effected, the Count 
and Heinrich entered. 

" What hast done with poor Odo Von Ritterstein, 
good Frau ; that man of sin and sorrow V 9 demanded 
the latter, in his hearty, unsuspecting manner. 

" He has left us, Heinrich." 

"For his castle! well, the man hath had his 
share of sorrow, and ease may not yet come too 
late. The life of Odo, Lord Count, hath not been, 
like our own histories, of a nature to make him con 
tent. Had that affair of the host, though at the 
best but an irreverent and unwarrantable act, hap 
pened in these days, less might have been thought 
of it ; and then, (tapping his wife s cheek) to lose 
Ulrike s favor was no slight calamity of itself. But 
what have we here ?" 

" Tis a deed, by which the Herr Von Ritterstein 
nvests Berchthold with his worldly effects." 

The Burgomaster hastily unfolded the ample 
parchment. At a glance, though unable to compre 
hend the Latin of the instrument, his accustomed eye 
saw that all the usual appliances were there. 
Turning suddenly to Emich, for he was not slow to 
comprehend the cause of the gift, he exclaimed 


" Here is manna in the wilderness ! Our differ 
ences are all happily settled, nobly-born Count, and 
next to according the hand of Meta to the owner of 
the lands of Ritterstein, I hold it a pleasure to oblige 
an illustrious friend and patron. Henceforth, Herr 
Emich, let there be nought but fair words between 

Since entering the hut, the Count had not spoken. 
His look had studied the tearful eyes, and colorless 
cheeks of Ulrike, and he put his own constructions on 
the scene. Still he did the fair wife of the burgher 
justice, for, though less credulous than Heinrich on 
the subject of his consort s affections, he too well 
knew the spotless character of her mind, to change 
the opinion her virtue had extorted from him, in 
early youth. He accepted the conditions of his 
friend, with as much apparent frankness as they 
were offered, and, after a few short explanations, the 
whole party left the Heidenmauer together. 

Our task is ended. On the following day Berch- 
thold and Meta were united. The Castle and the 
Town vied with each other doing in honor to the 
nuptials, and Ulrike and Lottchen endeavored to 
forget their own permanent causes of sorrow in the 
happiness of their children. 

In due time Berchthold took possession of his lands, 
removing with his bride and mother to the Castle of 
Ritterstein, which he always affected to hold merely 
as the trustee of its absent owner. Gottlob was pro 
moted in his service, and having succeeded in persuad 
ing Gisela to forget the gay cavalier who had fre 
quented Hartenburg, these two wayward spirits 
settled down into a half-loving, half- wrangling couple, 
foi the rest of their lives. 

Deurckheim, as is commonly the case with the 
secondary actors in most great changes, shared the 
fate of the frogs in the fable ; it got rid of the Bene 
dictines for a new master, and though the Burgo* 


master and Dietrich, in after life, had many wise 
discourses concerning the nature of the revolution of 
Limburg, as the first affected to call the destruction 
of the Abbey, he never could very clearly explain to 
the understanding of the latter, the great principles 
of its merits. Still the smith was not the less an ad 
mirer of the Count, and to this day his descendants 
show the figure of a marble cherub, as a trophy 
brought away by their ancestor on that occasion. 

Bonifacius and his monks found shelter in other 
convents, each endeavoring to lessen the blow, by 
such expedients as best suited his tastes and charac 
ter. The pious Arnolph persevered to the end, and, 
believing charity to be the fairest attribute of the 
Christian, he never ceased to pray for the enemies 
of the church, or to toil that they might have the 
benefit of his intercession. 

As for Odo Von Ritterstein, the country was long 
moved by different tales of his fate. One rumor 
and it had much currency said he was serving in 
company with Albrecht of Viderbach, who rejoined 
his brother knights, and that he died on the sands of 
Africa. But there is another tradition extant in the 
Jaergethal, touching his end. It it is said, that, thirty 
years later, after Heinrich, and Emich of Leiningen, 
and most of the other actors of this legend, had been 
called to their great accounts, an aged wanderer 
came to the gate of Ritterstein, demanding shelter 
for the night. He is reported to have been well re 
ceived by Meta, her husband and son being then 
absent in the wars, and to have greatly interested 
his hostess, by the histories he gave of customs and 
events in distant regions. Pleased with her guest, 
the Madame Von Ritterstein (for Berchthold had 
purchased this appellation by his courage) urged 
him to rest himself another day within her walls. 
From communicating, the stranger began to inquire; 
and he so knew how to put his questions, that he soon 


obtained the history of the family. Ulrike was the 
last he named ; and the younger female inmates of 
the castle fancied that his manner changed as he 
listened to the account of the close of her life, and 
of her peaceful and pious end. The stranger de 
parted that very day, nor would his visit probably 
have been remembered, had not his body been short 
ly after found in the hut of the Heidenmauer, stiffen- 
ed by death. Those who love to throw a coloring 
of romance over the affections, are fond of believing 
this was the Hermit, who had found a secret satis 
faction, even at the close of so long a life, in breath 
ing his last on the spot where he had finally sepa 
rated from the woman he had so long and fruitlessly 

To this tradition true or false we attach no 
importance. Our object has been to show, by a 
rapidly-traced picture of life, the reluctant manner 
in which the mind of man abandons old, to receive 
new, impressions the inconsistencies between pro 
fession and practice the error in confounding the 
good with the bad, in any sect or persuasion the 
common and governing principles that control the 
selfish, under every shade and degree of existence 
and the high and immutable qualities of the good, 
the virtuous, and of the really noble. 



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