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during a lull in the tempest. “From though inwardly repelled by her forwhence come you, young man?” bidding appearance, he constrained
6. From Padua this evening." himself to appear gay, and listened at
“ That is a long way,” cried the tentively to the tattling of the old dame, old woman; “twenty good miles from who, on account of her former ac. hence. What business have you here, quaintance with his family, seemed in a place to which no high-road inclined to exert a sort of authority leads ?
over him. But what was his astonish. “ I know not,” replied the youth. ment and consternation when she sud• The miserable are incapable of form- denly cried out-"Crescentia ?" ing plans, or of taking thought for “ For Godsake!" cried the youth, the future. Well would it be if there trembling all over, “ do you know were no futurity at all in reserve for her?—do you behold her? Do you me."
know any thing at all about her?" Badly said, badly said, young • What ails you ?" shrieked the old man; you must not speak so. What!
“I think I ought to know exclaimed she, rising up and scruti- something about her, seeing that she nizing him by the light of the lainp— is my own daughter. Look yourself, “ A Florentine! by all that's wonder how the lazy wench sits yonder fast ful. It is long since I have cast eyes asleep, allowing the fire to go out, and on the garb of fair Florence. This
our supper to grow cold." visit must betoken me some good-luck. She took the lamp, and approached Truly this storm has sent me a wel. the hearth. And now the youth's come guest; for know, my young sir, bewilderment may be conceived, when that I myself come from that blessed he beheld Crescentia before him, just country-from Florence. Ah! what as he had seen her that very evening would I give to tread thy soil once lying in her coffin, in Padua. The more, and to behold thy beloved moun- pale countenance, the closed eyes, the tains and gardens! But your name, heavy tresses, and all the features, my dear young master ?”
were those of his bride-elect ; her " Antonio Cavalcanti," answered small hands, also, were folded, and bcthe youth, who felt his heart some- tween them lay an image of our Sa. what warmed towards the old hag, viour on the cross. Her white robe because she was his countrywoman. heightened the illusion.
“ Oh, glorious name !” exclaimed • She is dead !” cried he, gazing she, enthusiastically, “ Cavalcanti ! upon her, and rooted to the spot. years ago I knew a man of that name, • She is lazy, the idle huzzy!” Guido Cavalcanti."
croaked the hag, shaking the fair “ He was my father,” said Anto- sleeper. • The useless baggage can nio.
do nothing but pray and sleep." " And he is dead?"
Crescentia aroused herself, and her • He is dead," said the young man; confusion heightened her charms. o and my mother, too, has long since Antonio was wellnigh distracted when been taken from me.
he saw before him her whom he “ I know it, my beautiful youth," thought he had lost for ever. cried the old woman.
66 It is now
« Old sorceress !" cried he with fifteen years since she died. Alas! vehemence." Where am I? And she yielded up her spirit in an unhap- what image is that which you have py time. And your dear good father, placed before my wandering senses ? I have to thank him that I was not Speak!- who is that blessed being ? condemned some years afterwards to Crescentia, is it really thou? Dost the fagot. The judges had taken it thou still know thine own Antonio? into their heads that I was a witch, Tell me how comest thou to be here?” and would not be convinced to the “ Hollo! my young gallant,” cried contrary. But, by his threats and the old woman, “ really you rave, as entreaties, my Lord Guido bore me if you had lost your judgment. Is through, and they at length consented the storm still raging in your brain ?merely to banish me from my native has the lightning blasted your reason? land. And now the storm has driven This girl is my daughter, and has ever the son of my benefactor into my poor been so as far as I know." little hut! Give me your hand, my “ I know you not,” said Crescentia, young master.'
blushing deeply and addressing Ari. Antonio gave her his hand, and, al. tonio, * I have never been in Padua,'
“ Come,” said the old woman, in- merly done under its own multiplied terrupting them, “ let us go to sup. vexations." per.
“ It appears, then, that matters went The meal was set, and consisted of on bitter bad in your household ?" en. vegetables and a flask of rich Floren- quired the old woman with a discord. tine wine, which the old dame pro. ant chuckle. duced out of a small cupboard. An. Antonio darted a keen glance at the tonio could eat but little. He kept hag as he replied, in a tone of confuhis eyes riveted on Crescentia, and sion, “I know not how I have been his disturbed fancy was ever whisper- led to speak, in this place, of my own ing him that she was his dead bride. misery and that of my parents.' Then, again, he believed that he lay The old woman drained the red bound up in a heavy dream—the vic. wine which stood mantling in her glass tim of a delirium which changed all like blood, and with loud laughter rethe objects around him that, perhaps, plied"I know no such glorious sport at that moment he was in the city, in -no such perfect heaven upon earthhis own home, suffering under the as is to be witnessed when we see a pressure of his own wild imaginations, husband and wife, once a most loving and incapable of perceiving or recog. couple, now living together like cat nising any of his friends, who yet and dog-tearing, scolding, and ban. might be weeping around him, and ning one another like two tigers, and striving to comfort his afflicted spirit. both ready to devote themselves to
The storm was now past, and the Satan, provided by doing so each can stars were shining in the dark quiet annoy the other, or break the band sky. The old woman ate well, and that unites them. That, my boy, is drank better of the sweet wine. “Come, the divinest spectacle that human life Master Antonio,” said she, after a affords, and greatly is the sport en. pause, “ tell us what it was that took hanced if we know that the pair, in the you to Padua, and brought you hither.” early delirium of their passion, broke
Antonio started from his reverie. through every law of God and man in
• You are certainly entitled,” re. order to come together, and to tie the plied he, “ to interrogate your guest; bands which they now abominate so besides, you appear to have known my heartily. That, believe me, is a high father, and, perhaps, my mother also.” festival for Satan and all his powers,
“ Well, indeed, did I know her," and is celebrated as a jubilee throughsaid the old woman. " No one knew out hell with tinkling cymbals. And her better. Ay, ay, she died just six now, touching these family affairs of months before your father made out yours
But I must hold my tongue his second marriage with the Mar- —perhaps I might say too much." cbioness of Manfredi."
Crescentia looked sorrowfully to“So you are acquainted with that wards the astonished Antonio. “Never circumstance, too, are you?”
mind her," whispered she. 6. She is « Yes, truly," continued she ; it drunk, miserable woman. appears as if I had that fair puppet But the old woman's words had for ever before mine eyes. Tell me, powerfully recalled to the mind of An. is your beautiful stepmother still alive? tonio the past, with all its dismal When she came up from the country
The gloomy day came back to be married, she was just in the hey- upon his soul in which he had seen day of her charms."
his stepmother on her deathbed, and “ I cannot tell you,” said Antonio, his father, in despair, cursing the hour with a sigh, “ all that I endured at of his birth, and entreating forgiveness the hands of this stepmother. She of the spirit of his first wife. had thrown the spells of enchantment, “ Have you nothing more to tell as it were, around my father, who us?” asked the old woman, arousing would rather have acted with the him with these words out of his deep greatest injustice towards his oldest reverie. friends, and his own son, than have " What more can I have ? ” said subjected her to the smallest incon- Antonio, bitterly.
6. You appear to venience. But matters between him know all about me, or to have learnt and her were at length very much it by means of some sort of second changed. Yet, I believe, my heart sight. Need I tell you that it was our now suffered more from witnessing old servant Roberto who poisoned my their mutual hatred, than it had for. slepiother, stirred up to revenge by
her dislike of him, and that he after him with such an unutterable woefulwards endeavoured, most accursedly, ness of expression, that tears forced to fasten the crime on my father? He themselves from his
eyes. escaped from prison, scaled the wall man is surely drunk ! ” said the old of the garden, and, in the grotto there,
“ Come, tell me, is the daugh. plunged his dagger into my father's ter of Podesta dead? And when did heart.”
she die ?" - Roberto! the old Roberto !” cried “ This very evening," answered the the hag as if in high glee; “ay, ay, weeping Antonio,“ I met her funeral.” what is there that one does not live to “ Is it possible ?” cried the old learn! This Roberto was in his early woman, delighted, and filling herself years a right good hypocrite—to ail another glass.
- That will be good appearance a most holy dog; but he news for the family of Marconi in is now become, as I hear, a lad of the Venice." most determined metal, He stabbed “Why so ?" asked Antonio. him in the grotto, too ?-well, it is won- “ Because they are now the sole derful how all things hang together. heirs of the wealthy Podesta. This is In that same grotto your father often sat what that crafty family wished, but with his first bride in the early years scarcely could have hoped ever to be." of their love, and there did he first “ Woman !” cried Antonio, with reswear to her eternal constancy. But newed astonishment, “you know drink, my son, drink, and go on with every thing! your story.”
“ Not quite every thing," returned “I swore to avenge my father's she, “but some things ; and witchcraft, death,” said Antonio.
let me tell you, has something to do with « Quite right,” answered the old it. Do not be too much shocked: but it woman; “revenge, revenge is a sweet was not for nothing that these Florenand precious word!”
tine gentry wished to bring me to the “ But Roberto,” added Antonio, stake. Look me in the face, young“ had escaped, and was nowhere to be ster, and brush aside the locks from found."
your forehead. There now, give me “ What a pity !" cried she. “. And your left hand—now your right. Well, now the thirst for revenge drives you that is strange and wonderful !-a terthrough the world in pursuit of him?" rible danger impends over you, but if
“ It does. I have traversed Italy you survive it, you shall again behold and searched every city, but as yet your beloved one." have discovered no trace of the mur- “ T'other side the grave!" sighed derer. The fame of Pietro d'Abano Antonio. at length made me a sojourner in Pa- “ T'other side the grave!” shouted dua. I wished to learn wisdom from the old woman, reeling with intoxicahis lips; but when I was introduced cation—“ T'other side-what means to the family of Podesta”.
that? I say on this side of it. T'other * Now, speak out, child !”
side, indeed! The grave has no “I know not what to say. I know t'other side. What words fools make not whether I am mad or dreaming.
use of!” There I beheld the daughter of that Antonio was about to give her an house, the charming, the lovely Cres- angry answer, when Crescentia threw centia : and here also I behold her very upon him such a beseeching glance, as self. Surely that funeral ceremony
say, Spare my mother!" was a bad unseasonable jest, and surely that his indignation was completely this disguise, this flight into the wil. disarmed. The old woman now began derness, is just as ill-timed a deception. to yawn and rub her eyes, and at length, Discover yourself, discover yourself to overpowered by her repeated draughts me, my dear delightful Crescentia ; do of strong wine, she sank down fast you not know that my heart lives only asleep. The fire was extinguished on in your bosom? Wherefore subject me the hearth, and the lamp was burning to this cruel trial ? Perhaps your pa- low. Antonio stood meditating on his rents are in the next room, and hear strange situation, and Crescentia was all that we are saying. Oh! if so, sitting at the window on a low footlet them be called in. I have now stool. At length the wearied youth suffered enough from this terrible test, put the question—" Where am I to which has been like to drive me mad." sleep?": The pale Crescentia gazed upon
much as to
r. There is a chamber above us,"
said Crescentia, with a sigh-and now of Andrea or Ildefons, Would to for the first time he remarked that she God that I might perish now!” had been weeping bitterly. She trim- “ Come,” cried Antonio, “ the door med the lamp, and preceded him in is open. Fly with me—the nightsilence. He followed her up the narrow the wood will protect us." steps, and when they had entered the “ Behold !” said the maiden, how small dark chamber, the maid placed strongly the windows are secured by the lamp on a table, and was in the act thick iron stanchels. The door of the of retiring. However, when she got house is fastened with a great lock, to the door, she turned round and sur- the key of which my mother never veyed the young man with a deathlike parts with. Did you not observe how glance ; she stood for a moment trem- she turned the bolt immediately after bling before him, and then, uttering a you had entered the house." loud shriek, fell in convulsions at his " We might dispatch the old hag," feet.“ What ails you, my dear child ?" said. Antonio, “and then obtain possaid he, lifting her up. “ Be composed, session of her key.” and tell me your affliction.”
“ Murder my mother!” cried the “ No," cried the weeping damsel, maiden, turning pale, and clinging to "let me lie where I am. Would to Antonio, so that he could not stir hand God that I could die this moment at
or foot. This is too dreadful. The young man quieted her appreAnd I can do nothing. I cannot pre- hensions. He then proposed, that as vent it. Dumb and powerless, I must the old woman was intoxicated and be a spectator of the infernal deed. fast asleep, they should softly abstract Alas ! you are a doomed man.” the key from her side, then open the
“ Collect yourself,” said Antonio, door and escape. comforting her, “and tell me plainly ed to have some hopes of the success what is the meaning of all this.” of this plan. They therefore de
“ I resemble,” said she, in a voice scended gently into the lower chambroken by violent sobs—" I resemble, ber, in which they found the old woyou say, your dead love, and yet I man still sleeping soundly. Crescenam she whose hand must lead you to a tia, with trembling hands, sought and murder-grave. It is easy
for my mo
found the key, and after some time, ther to foretell that some terrible dan. succeeded in loosening it from her girger is near you, knowing as she does dle. She made a sign to the youth : the company that harbour nightly in they softly approached the door, and this den. No man ever went forth cautiously inserted the key into the alive out of this hell. Every moment lock: Antonio was in the act of forbrings nearer and nearer the steps of cing back the bolt with a firm noiseless the dreadful Ildefons and the accur- hand, when he found that another persed Andrea, with their helpmates and son was, at the same moment, turning followers. And yet I can do nothing the lock from the outside. The door but be the herald of your death. I opened, and there stood before him, can afford you no help, and no means face to face, a huge savage-looking of escape."
« Ildefonso !”, shrieked the Antonio became alarmed. In con- maiden ; and the youth recognised at siderable agitation, he groped for his the first glance the murderer of his sword, and examined the point of his father-Roberto. dagger: and then he felt his courage “ What is the meaning of this ?” and determination revive. Ardently said the robber, in a hoarse voice. as he had wished for death, he now “ How came you by the key?" felt that there was something too
as Roberto !" exclaimed Antonio, dreadful in meeting it in a robber's seizing the ruffian furiously by the den. “ But you, my girl,” said he throat. They struggled violently “you, with such a countenance, and together ; but the strength and actisuch a form-how can you consent to vity of the youth at length prevailbe the companion and helpmate of ed: he hurled the miscreant to the these murderous ruffians ?"
earth, and planting his knee
his “ I cannot escape," answered she, breast, plunged his dagger into his “otherwise how gladly would I fly heart. Mean-while, the old dame this house. And, alas! it has been awoke with loud cries : she sprang determined that to-morrow I shall be up, and tore away her daughter from carried away across the sea—the wife the scene of strife, with shrieks and
curses : she dragged her into the up- threats, he reached a spot in the wood per chamber, and bolted the door from from which several pathways diverg. within. Antonio was about to go up ed, and was uncertain which to take. stairs to burst open the door, when He looked behind him, and seeing that . several dark figures entered the cot- his pursuers were separated, he attack. tage, and were not a little astonished ed the nearest of them, and disabled to find their leader dead upon the floor. him from following further. But, at “I now am your captain ! " cried a the same instant, he heard renewed stout figure, all over ornaments, sa- shouts, and looking into the wood, he vagely drawing his sword as he said saw new assailants coming upon him it. • Yes, provided Crescentia be from a side-path, and likely to cut off given up to me"-replied a younger
his retreat. In this perplexity, he robber fiercely. In a moment their luckily fell in with his horse, grazing swords were crossed, and they fell in a small open space, and seemingly murderously to work. The lamp quite refreshed. He lost not a mowas upset, and they fought in the dark- ment in springing upon its back; and ness from corner io corner, amid yells no sooner had he seized the bridle, and curses. • Are ye mad?” cried than the animal, as if aware of his another voice, striking in during the master's danger, carried him along a fray—“ Ye will allow the stranger to beaten track, with the speed of the escape. Cut him down first, and set wind, out of the wood. By degrees, tle your own disputes afterwards.” the cries of his pursuers became faintBut the combatants, blind with rage, er and fainter : he reached the open heard not what was said. The first country; and by the time he had restreaks of dawn were now beginning covered from his frightful adventure, to dapple the horizon.
At this mo- the city spires appeared shining bement, Antonio felt a hand aiming at fore him in the light of the morning his throat: he struck the murderer from him: “I am slain,” cried the The strange appearance he presentlatter, falling to the earth_"Fools, ed, without his bat, and with his dress why don't ye guard the door, and pre- otherwise disordered, excited great vent his escape ?” Mean-while, An. curiosity among the crowds of country tonio had got to the open door-he people whom he fell in with on their bolted through the garden, and over way to the market, and the citizens the hedge, with the robbers at his heels. looked upon him with astonishment as He was only a few paces ahead of he dismounted before the great palace them, and they did their best to over. of Podesta. take him. Followed by their yells and
THE INCANTATION. That same night there were strange cal attire, and moved about fetching doings at Padua, which, as yet, men and arranging all things according to little wot of. No sooner had darkness his master's commands. Painted coenveloped the city in its heavy folds, verlets were spread upon the walls, than Pietro d'Abano set about ar- and along the floor of the chamber : ranging all the utensils and instru- the great magic mirror was set upments of his art, for the performance right; and now the moment drew on of a mysterious and wonderful opera- which the enchanter deemed most tion. He was clothed in a long robe favourable for his schemes. in wrought with hieroglyphics ; al- “ Have you placed the crystals ready had he described the magic within the circle ? cried Pietro. “I circle on the floor of his apartment, have," answered the caricature of and made all the other preparations humanity, bustling about unweariedly requisite for ensuring the mighty re- among the phials, glasses, human sult which he desired. He had dili- skeletons, and other extraordinary gently scrutinized the position of the furniture which littered that strange stars, and now was waiting patiently apartment. The incense-vessel was for the propitious moment which was now produced a fame was kindled to crown all his expectations.
on the altar--and the magician drew His attendant, the hateful Bere- forth cautiously, and with almost cynth, was likewise clothed in magi. trembling hand, from an innermost