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Bend from your clouds, ye kingly dead!
And, crown'd, ye softer shadows bend!
Deep-echoing swell the blessing said
Upon the young anointed head
Of her, in whom-as yet unwed-

Your thousand years of glory end!
See, 'mid your pale and awful ring,
She bends, a fragile blooming thing!
Like to some fair and kneeling saint
Surrounded by cathedral glooms,
Whom marble shadows, vast and faint,
Are watching from the tombs.
Stretch forth, dark Cressy's Victor-Lord,
O'er her thy realm-protecting sword!
And, Warrior Woman! at the sweep
Of whose resistless hand
Castile's proud navies from the deep
Were drifted like the sand,

On her thy reign's bright years bestow,
And all thy fortune-save its woe!
Still round they press: that mournful Bride
Who left, reluctant, book and bower
To share the momentary power

And pomp for which she died.
The Monarch-Boy with aspect pale,
Is there, a kindred brow to hail.
And She who, at the moment Hope
Prepared her glory's page to ope,
Uncrown'd, resign'd life's gladness brief,
And left the Isles to night and grief;
For her, the favour'd, long through years

On years, shall Pity wake and Woe,
While flow the bard's melodious tears,

While BYRON's strains immortal flow.
See, leaning near, her Sire, (in form

Like to the Greek's Olympian God,)
Before whom Pleasure's rosy charm

Was spread where'er he trode;
Who lived to drain the bitterest sup
That lurks in Joy's exhausted cup-
Who died, and with his latest breath
Left one dread moral, " This is Death," *
To yon meek Maid, if handed down,
Worth half the brilliants in her crown.


But lo! each Shape of kingly mould

Each circling Form, august, has fled!

Before the bard again unfold

The pageant's numbers bright and bold,

And, from the batteried cannon roll'd,

That volley's thunder-crash has told

The Island Queen is wed!

His last words to the only page in attendance at the moment.-See the Journals

of the period.


LEIGH HUNT is now a successful dramatist, and we rejoice in his success as cordially as his best friends can do for he deserves it. We are

about to praise, but not to flatter him; and, when we think we see occasion, shall be free in our strictures, knowing that he has an independent spirit, and that, like all men of real genius, he would prefer from a disinterested critic his sincere opinion, formed in a genial spirit, to more extravagant encomiums not bearing the unequivocal impress of the love of truth. Nor with the congratulatory acclamations of sympathizing gods and men yet ringing in his ears, will he be regardless of a voice from far-off Scotland. We seldom go to the theatre now-a-days; but when Murray brings out on the Edinburgh stage The Legend of Florence, Christopher North will be in No. Three, right-hand side, with his court-crutch -crimson velvet and gold-and the house, at each soul-stirring or soulsubduing hit, will time its thunders to the beck of THE BALD-HEAD.

"A word," says Mr Hunt, in his pleasant preface, "respecting the story of my play. When I resided near Florence, some years ago, I was in the habit of going through a street in that city called the Street of Death,' (Via della Morte,)-a name given it from the circumstance of a lady's having passed through it at night-time in her graveclothes, who had been buried during a trance. The story, which in its mortal particulars resembles several of the like sort that are popular in other countries, and which indeed are no less probable than_romantic, has been variously told by Italian authors, and I have taken my own liberties with it accordingly." No less probable than romantic? What! being buried alive, and undergoing resurrection! Even so. For in that country the corpse is not coffined-we forget that dreadful word—and there is room for re-awakening life to breathe freely in the vault of death. But is such a strange event a fit story for a play? Yes; every popular legend is so, with hardly any exception; and

that this one is peculiarly so, is proved by the play being throughout most interesting, and the pathos towards the close profound. There needs no other proof of the fitness of the story for tragedy, than that it here affects us with terror and pity--but pity predominates, that other passion is here transient ; while there is no end to our tears but "in thoughts that lie too deep" for such effusion, and that finally settle down into assured peace.

How beautiful a picture!

Colonna. I heard, as I came in, one who

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Dared not forbid, for very piteous truth;
And as she lay thus, not more unresisting
Than all her life, I pitied even him,

To think, that let him weep or ask her pardon

Never so much, she would not answer more. As she was buried, so did she arise.

But let us begin at the beginning, and not at the end. The play opens well with a lively and spirited colloquy between Fulvio da Riva, a poet, and Cæsare Colonna, an officer of the Pope-(his Holiness being on his way to visit his native city)—who meet on the high-road from Florence to Rome. From it we get an insight into the character of Agolanti, a noble Flo rentine, who has been for some four years married to Ginevra-and who, it is happily said,

"Is as celestial out of his own house As he is devil within it."

So says Da Riva, and Colonna takes up the word.

Col. The devil it is! (Looking after him.) Methinks he casts a blackness Around him as he walks, and blights the vineyards.

And all is true then, is it, which they tell me?


London: Moxon.



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Partly, because she is,-partly, because
She is his own, and glorifies his choice;
And therefore he does her the honour of
making her

The representative and epitome
Of all he values,-public reputation,
Private obedience, delighted fondness,
Grateful return for his unamiableness,
Love without bounds, in short, for his self-
love :

And as she finds it difficult, poor soul,

To pay such reasonable demands at sight With the whole treasure of her heart and smiles,

The gentleman takes pity on-himself!
Looks on himself as the most unresponded to
And unaccountably ill-used bad temper
In Tuscany; rages at every word

And look she gives another; and fills the house

With miseries, which, because they ease himself

And his vile spleen, he thinks her bound to


And then finds malice in her very suffering! Col. And she, they tell me, suffers dangerously?

Da Riva. 'Tis thought she'll die of it.
And yet, observe now :—

Such is poor human nature, at least such
Is poor human inhuman nature in this man,
That if she were to die, I verily think
He'd weep, and sit at the receipt of pity,

And call upon the gods, and think he loved her!

Col. Poor, dear, damn'd tyrant! and where goes he now ?


This amiable and happy personage, who had left Da Riva just before Colonna made his appearance, is now, we are told, on his way to Florence from his country-house, hesitating about taking his fair wife to town to let her enjoy the holidays on the advent" of his most pleasant Holiness the Pope,”for fear of the said Antonio, and still more afraid of leaving "her in the shades, love's natural haunt." surely the man is jealous-though, Heaven knows, without any other cause than that he knows Antonio loves her, and loved her before her husband ever saw her face. Antonio is even now in the country-house of the "sweet Diana,"-and the two friends agree to visit her, and accompany her and the bright Olympia". divine widows" both, and known to them formerly at the baths of Pisa as lanti's villa close by, partly that they "Sunlight and Moonlight"-to Ago may bring to Antonio


"Better news of his saint's health, Partly for other reasons which you'll see." Sprightly fellows-ready for any mischief!

Scene II. is a room in the villa of Agolanti, and we there find Fiordilisa, Ginevra's maid, and Giulio, a page, not at this moment making love, but somewhat flurried on account of their lady's anger at " Signor Antonio's letter," which they had slipped into her hand only to be sent back unopened.

Fiordilisa. Oh! she says dreadful things. She says you and I Will kill her; that we make her, or would make her,

Tell falsehoods to her husband, or bring down

His justice on our heads; and she forbids

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We do not very well know what to say of this letter. It proves the perfect purity of Ginevra, and that Antonio's love was honourable as

"Most harmless;—I dare to add most hopeless; and so far it is well. It also

virtuous !'

"And here again below:

"I have written what I have written on the outside of this letter, hoping that it may move you to believe the possibility of its not being unworthy to meet the purest of mortal eyes.'

"Filthiest hypocrite! caught in his own birdlime. [Opens and reads the letter.

"As you have opened neither my first letter nor my second, written at intervals of six months each, from the moment when my name was first again mentioned to you since your marriage, I hardly dare hope that the words I am now writing shall have the blessedness of being looked upon, although they truly deserve it.

616 Truly, for most piteously they deserve it. I am going to reward (may I utter such a word?) your kindness, by the greatest and most dreadful return. I can make it. I will write to you no more.


65 6


But this promise is a thing so terrible and so unsupportable, except in the hope of its doing you some good, that I have one reward to beg for myself; not as a condition, but as a last and enduring charity.

"I no longer ask you to love me, however innocently, or on the plea of its being some shadow of relief to you (in the sweet thought of loving) from an unhappiness, of which all the world speaks.'

[AGOLANTI pauses, greatly moved. "Is it so then? and the world speaks of


And basely speaks! He has been talking then,

And acting too. But let me know this all. [Reading.

"Neither yet will I beg you not to hate me; for so gentle a heart cannot hate any body; and you never were unjust except to yourself. [Pauses a little again.

"But this I do beg: first, that you will take care of a health, which Heaven has given you no right to neglect, whatever be your unhappiness; and which, under Heaven, is the best support of it; and secondly,

punishes Agolanti-and that is better; while we can easily conceive an audience interested by it, because earnestly expecting some revelation to be made towards the close. But why was it sent-and for the third time? He implores her to take care of her health; but what did she care about her health who was not only willing, but desired to die? He assures her of his devoted love; but that she well knew, and to her a wife, but an unhappy one-it could give no true comfort. He asks her not to forget him—when he might be numbered with the dead; but not to call such request fantastical-it was needless, and he has not the look of a dying man. Loving ones, divided by destiny on earth, hope to meet in heaven. Why, then, such a letter at all? And oh, how could he Antonio Rondinelli-think of thus endangering the life of such a being as Ginevra? That was very, very selfish; and love like his should have recoiled in horror from the risk of subjecting his "soul's wife to yet worse indignity and outrage from her body's husband.

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In Scene III.- another room in Agolanti's house-Ginevra, Olympia, Diana, Colonna, and Da Riva are discovered sitting, Fiordilisa standing behind her lady's chair. They are talking about the approaching celebrations, and very engaging talk it is; the raillery is light and elegant, and we are in love with both the widows. But we love Ginevra. Few as her words are, and somewhat sad withal, they give a delightful impression of her character. But Agolanti enters, and light grows gloom. Say what she will be she glad or pensive

willing to witness with her husband and friends the coming spectacle, or to keep aloof and retired from the throng, she but irritates the ill-condi

tioned hypocrite-all she can do to find out his wishes, that they may be hers, is not only ineffectual but turned against her; and while, in an under tone, he accuses her of "insolence" and "a woman's plot," the savage "wrings her hands sharply;" and as they quit the room, mutters

"Be in the purple chamber

In twenty minutes. Do you hear me speak?
A fair day to my courteous visiters,
And may they ever have the joy they bring."

Curse him!-we already hate him at the close of the First Act as well as if we had abhorred him for a dozen years, and devoutly wish him at the devil, between the horns of the old dilemma.

In the First Scene of the Second Act, we are introduced to Antonio, of whom we have been predisposed to think highly, in spite-perhaps you would say because-of that letter. He is walking with his good friends Colonna and Da Riva in a garden of Diana's villa, and they wisely seek to comfort him, not by show of condolence, but by the medicine of mirthful spirits. There is no puling sentimen. talism in this play; and, though Antonio takes but small part in the merriment, yet knowing it is kindly meant, he does not discourage it either by sour or sullen looks-though gloomy he is not glum, and at the close of the scene kisses Olympia's hand with a cheerful gallantry.

But 'tis time-though no time has been lost-that we should see husband and wife together-alone-that we may know the amount of their misery, and think if it is ever to have an end. Ginevra has obeyed the order to get her to the purple chamber-twenty minutes have crawled by her-and Agolanti is at her side. He believes that he is a pious man-with a deep sense of religion; but Da Riva, who knows him better, told us, you will recollect

"In all, except a heart, and a black shade Of superstition, he is man enough,'

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Well he will surely not be incensed by the sight of superstition in another -in his wife. Ay, but hers is not a black shade, but a white light; and therefore her adoration is odious to his eyes, and he is wroth to behold her kneeling before the Madonna. The sorrowful have upward-looking eyes,

and heaven seems never so heavenly as when gazed on through tears.


A chamber hung with purple, and containing a cabinet picture of the Madonna, but otherwise little furnished. GINEVRA discovered sitting at a window.


Ago. Every way she opposes me, even with arms Of peace and love. I bade remove that


From this deserted room. Can she have had it

Brought back this instant, knowing how my anger,

Just though it be, cannot behold unmoved The face of suffering heaven? Oh, artifice In very piety! "Twere piety to veil it From our discourse, and look another way. [During this speech, GINEVRA comes forward, and AGOLANTI, after closing the cabinet doors over the picture, hands her a chair; adjusting another for himself, but continuing to stand. Gin. (Cheerfully.) The world seems

glad after its hearty drink Of rain. I fear'd, when you came back this


The shower had stopp'd you, or that you

were ill.

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To pretty household tremblers.
I express'd
No wish to see the tournament, nor indeed
Any thing, of my own accord; or contrary
To your good judgment.

Oh, of course not! Wishes
Are never express'd for, or by, contraries;
Nor the good judgment of an anxious hus-

Held forth as a pleasant thing to differ with.

Gin. It is as easy as sitting in my chair
To say, I will not go and I will not.
Be pleased to think that settled,

The more easily
As 'tis expected I should go, is it not?
And then you will sit happy at receipt
Of letters from Antonio Rondinelli.

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