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The trees and the herbs that round it grew The line the Abbot saw him throw Had been fashioned and formed long ages ago:

Were venomous and foul;

And the hands that worked his foreign vest,

As ever a company pumped;

Long ages ago had gone to their rest :

And the perch that was netted and laid You would have sworn, as you looked on

on the bank,


Grew rotten while it jumped:

He had fished in the flood with Ham and

And bold was he who thither came
At midnight, man or boy;
For the place was cursed with an evil

And the birds that through the bushes flew
Were the vulture and the owl;

The water was as dark and rank


And that name was 'The Devil's Decoy!' The Abbot was weary as Abbot could be, And he sat down to rest on the stump of a tree:

When suddenly rose a dismal tone-
Was it a song, or was it a moan?
‘Oh, ho! Oh, ho !

Lightly and brightly they glide and go:
The hungry and keen to the top are leaping,
The lazy and fat in the depths are sleeping;
Fishing is fine when the pool is muddy,
Broiling is rich when the coals are ruddy!'
In a monstrous fright, by the murky light,
He looked to the left, and he looked to
the right.

And what was the vision close before him,
That flung such a sudden stupor o'er him?
"T was a sight to make the hair uprise,
And the life-blood colder run:
The startled Priest struck both his thighs,
And the Abbey clock struck one!
All alone, by the side of the pool,
A tall man sate on a three-legged stool,
Kicking his heels on the dewy sod,
And putting in order his reel and rod.
Red were the rags his shoulders wore,
And a high red cap on his head he bore;
His arms and his legs were long and bare;
And two or three locks of long red hair
Were tossing about his scraggy neck,
Like a tattered flag o'er a splitting wreck.
It might be time, or it might be trouble,
Had bent that stout back nearly double;
Sunk in their deep and hollow sockets
That blazing couple of Congreve rockets;
And shrunk and shrivelled that tawny skin,
Till it hardly covered the bones within.

There was turning of keys, and creaking of locks,

As he took forth a bait from his iron box.
Minnow or gentle, worm or fly—

It seemed not such to the Abbot's eye:
Gaily it glittered with jewel and gem,
And its shape was the shape of a diadem.
It was fastened a gleaming hook about,
By a chain within, and a chain without;
The Fisherman gave it a kick and a spin,
And the water fizzed as it tumbled in!

From the bowels of the earth,
Now the battle's bursting peal,
Strange and varied sounds had birth;
Neigh of steed, and, clang of steel;
Echoed from the dungeon stone;
Now an old man's hollow groan
Now the weak and wailing cry
Of a stripling's agony !

Cold, by this, was the midnight air;

But the Abbot's blood ran colder, When he saw a gasping knight lie there, With a gash beneath his clotted hair,

And a hump upon his shoulder.
And the loyal churchman strove in vain

To mutter a Pater Noster:
For he who writhed in mortal pain,
Was camped that night on Bosworth plain,
The cruel Duke of Glo'ster!

There was turning of keys, and creaking of locks,

As he took forth a bait from his iron box.
It was a haunch of princely size,
Filling with fragrance earth and skies.
The corpulent Abbot knew full well
The swelling form and the steaming smell
Never a monk that wore a hood

Could better have guessed the very wood
Where the noble hart had stood at bay,
Weary and wounded, at close of day.

In the midst of all this calamity and confusion, there was, I know not how, an alarm begun that the French and Dutch, with whom we are now in hostility, were not only landed but even entering the city. There was in truth some days before great suspicion of those two nations joining; and now, that they had been the occasion of firing the town. This report did so terrify, that on a sudden there was such an uproar and tumult that they ran from their goods, and taking what weapons they could come at, they could not be stopped from falling on some of those nations whom they casually met, without sense or reason. The clamour and peril grew so excessive that it made the whole court amazed, and they did with infinite pains and great difficulty reduce and appease the people, sending troops of soldiers and guards to cause them to retire into the fields again, where they were watched all this night. I left them pretty quiet, and came home sufficiently weary and broken. Their spirits thus a little calmed, and the affright abated, they now began to repair into the suburbs about the city, where such as had friends or opportunity got shelter for the present, to which his majesty's proclamation also invited them.



[WINTHROP MACKWORTH PRAED was the son of Mr. Sergeant Praed. In 1820, while at Eton College, he prepared and brought out, with the aid of other young men, a periodical work entitled 'The Etonian,' which went through four editions. He was subsequently, while at Trinity College, Cambridge, one of the principal contributors to 'Knight's Quarterly Magazine.' Mr. Praed's university career was one of almost unequalled brilliancy. In 1831, having previously been called to the bar, he was returned to Parliament for a Cornish borough. His heaith was always somewhat feeble; and the promises of his youth were closed by his early death in 1840.]

The Abbot arose, and closed his book,
And donned his sandal shoon,
And wandered forth alone to look
Upon the summer moon:

A starlight sky was o'er his head,
A quiet breeze around;

And the flowers a thrilling fragrance shed,
And the waves a soothing sound:
It was not an hour, nor a scene, for aught
But love and calm delight;

Yet the holy man had a cloud of thought
On his wrinkled brow that night.
He gazed on the river that gurgled by,
But he thought not of the reeds;
He clasped his gilded rosary,

But he did not tell the beads:

If he looked to the Heaven, 't was not to He did not mark how the mossy path


Grew damp beneath his tread;

And nearer he came, and still more near,
To a pool, in whose recess

The water had slept for many a year,
Unchanged, and motionless;

From the river stream it spread away,
The space of half a rood;
The surface had the hue of clay,

And the scent of human blood;

The Spirit that dwelleth there;

If he opened his lips, the words they spoke
Had never the tone of prayer.

A pious Priest might the Abbot seem,
He had swayed the crosier well;
But what was the theme of the Abbot


The Abbot were loth to tell.

Companionless, for a mile or more,
He traced the windings of the shore.
Oh, beauteous is that river still,
As it winds by many a sloping hill,
And many a dim o'er-arching grove,
And many a flat and sunny cove,
And terraced lawns whose bright arcades
The honey-suckle sweetly shades,
And rocks whose very crags seem bowers,
So gay they are with grass and flowers.
But the Abbot was thinking of scenery,
About as much, in sooth,

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As a lover thinks of constancy,
Or an advocate of truth.

He did not mark how the skies in wrath
Grew dark above his head;

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d to follow the steps

t of earth before me, he sake of my fame; th. In my twentyand in my servants, man (who did not wing my figure and appearance I made,

head of a whole well bitted. I can ces I had from all s were held. But, the court to hear g creature (who was n a resignation in her with such a pretty uneasie eye to another, until she al in all she encountered, that ing eye upon me. I no sooner d knowing her cause to be the first 66 Make way for the defendant's immediately see the sheriff

ime her cause was upon

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Or who would reign o'er vale and hill, If woman's heart were rebel still?'

Sounds seemed dropping from the skies,
Stifled whispers, smothered sighs,
And the breath of vernal gales,
And the voice of nightingales :
But the nightingales were mute,
Envious, when an unseen lute
Shaped the music of its chords
Into passion's thrilling words.
'Smile, lady, smile!-I will not set
Upon my brow the coronet,
Till thou wilt gather roses white,
To wear around its gems of light.
Smile, lady, smile!—I will not see
Rivers and Hastings bend the knee,
Till those bewitching lips of thine
Will bid me rise in bliss from mine.
Smile, lady, smile!—for who would win
A loveless throne through guilt and sin?

One jerk, and there a lady lay,
A lady wondrous fair;

But the rose of her lip had faded away,
And her cheek was as white and cold as clay,
And torn was her raven hair.

'Ah ha!' said the Fisher, in merry guise, 'Her gallant was hooked before; And the Abbot heaved some piteous sighs, For oft he had bless'd those deep blue eyes, The eyes of Mistress Shore !

There was turning of keys, and creaking of locks,

As he took forth a bait from his iron box.
Many the cunning sportsman tried,
Many he flung with a frown aside;
A minstrel's harp, and a miser's chest,
A hermit's cowl, and a baron's crest,
Jewels of lustre, robes of price,
Tomes of heresy, loaded dice,
And golden cups of the brightest wine
That ever was pressed from the Burgundy

There was a perfume of sulphur and nitre,
As he came at last to a bishop's mitre!
From top to toe the Abbot shook
As the Fisherman armed his golden hook;
And awfully were his features wrought
By some dark dream, or wakened thought.
Look how the fearful felon gazes
On the scaffold his country's vengeance

When the lips are cracked, and the jaws are dry,

With the thirst which only in death shall die : Mark the mariner's frenzied frown, As the swaling wherry settles down, When peril has numbed the sense and will, Though the hand and the foot may struggle still:

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There was turning of keys, and creaking of locks,

As he stalked away with his iron box. 'Oh ho! Oh ho!

The cock doth crow;

It is time for the Fisher to rise and go. Fair luck to the Abbot, fair luck to the shrine;

He hath gnawed in twain my choicest line; Let him swim to the north, let him swim to the south,—

The Abbot will carry my hook in his mouth;

As ever was heard in the House of Peers
Against Emancipation:

His words had made battalions quake,
Had roused the zeal of martyrs ;
Had kept the Court an hour awake,

And the king himself three-quarters:
But ever, from that hour, 'tis said,

He stammered and he stuttered
As if an axe went through his head,
With every word he uttered.
He stuttered o'er blessing, he stuttered
o'er ban,

He stuttered, drunk or dry,
And none but he and the Fisherman
Could tell the reason why!

The Abbot had preached for many years,
With as clear articulation


[The 113th number of the 'Spectator' describes Sir Roger de Coverley falling in love with a beautiful widow. The paper is by Steele; and to a reader of the present day it may appear somewhat trite and mawkish. The good old knight looks back upon his unrequited youthful affection with a half-ludicrous solemnity. His mistress was a learned lady, who only gave him the encouragement of declaring that "Sir Roger de Coverley was the tamest and most humane of all the brutes in the country." It is scarcely necessary to follow the disconsolate bachelor's relation of his disappointment. The following description, however, of the sheriff riding in state to the assizes will serve, with a little variation of costume, for a picture of the same scene in our own day: for who amongst our country readers has not heard the barbarous dissonance of the sheriff's trumpets, and smiled at the awkward pomp of his mighty javelin-men?]

"I came to my estate in my twenty-second year, and resolved to follow the steps of the most worthy of my ancestors who have inhabited this spot of earth before me, in all the methods of hospitality and good neighbourhood, for the sake of my fame; and in country sports and recreations, for the sake of my health. In my twentythird year I was obliged to serve as sheriff of the county; and in my servants, officers, and whole equipage indulged the pleasure of a young man (who did not think ill of his own person) in taking that public occasion of showing my figure and behaviour to advantage. You may easily imagine to yourself what appearance I made, who am pretty tall, rid well, and was very well dressed, at the head of a whole county, with music before me, a feather in my hat, and my horse well bitted. I can assure you I was not a little pleased with the kind looks and glances I had from all the balconies and windows as I rode to the hall where the assizes were held. But, when I came there, a beautiful creature in a widow's habit sat in the court to hear the event of a cause concerning her dower. This commanding creature (who was born for the destruction of all who beheld her) put on such a resignation in her countenance, and bore the whispers of all around the court with such a pretty uneasiness, I warrant you, and then recovered herself from one eye to another, until she was perfectly confused by meeting something so wistful in all she encountered, that at last, with a murrain to her, she cast her bewitching eye upon me. I no sooner mct it but I bowed like a great surprised booby; and knowing her cause to be the first which came on, I cried, like a captivated calf as I was, "Make way for the defendant's witnesses." This sudden partiality made all the county immediately see the sheriff also was become a slave to the fine widow. During the time her cause was upon

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