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ed, sell in long locks on either side of aspalace, irresolute and dreaming; and || high imperial brow. His features were trust that an intrigue, by which his jeń. regular and majestic; and his mantle, lousies are aroused against his general, clasped with a single jewel of rare price Muza, may end either in the loss of that and lustre, and wrought at the breast with able leader, or in the commotion of Open a silver cross, waved over a yigorous rebellion or civil war. Treason within and manly frame, which derived from the Grenada will open its gates to us. So composed and tranquil dignity of habitual me two hours hence; the council for to command that imposing effect which many present is dissolved.” of the renowned knights and heroes in his . The knights rose, and withdrew wi presence took from loftier stature, and the usual grave and stately ceremonies of ampler proportions. At his right hand, respect, which Ferdinand observed to sat Prince Juan, his son, in the first bloom' and exacted from his court; the young of youth; at his left, the celebrated Rod-prince remained. rigo Ponce de Leon, marquis of Cadiz; Ferdinand crossed himself devo!, along the table, in the order of their mili- and then, rising, drew aside a part of tary rank, were seen the splendid Duke drapery of the pavilion, and called, in of Medina Sidonia, equally noble in as-low voice, the name of Perez. A grave rect and in name; the worn and thought-Spaniard, somewhat past the verge of ful countenance of the Marquis de Villena; middle age, appeared. the melancholy brow of the heroic Alonzo “Perez,” said the king, reseating him. de Aguilar; and the gigantic frame, theses, “has the person we expected in
animated features, and sparkling eyes of Grenada yet arrived s”
that fiery Hernando del Pulgar, surnamed “the knight of the cxploits.” “You see, senores,” said the king, continuing an address to which his chiefs seemed to listen with reverential attention, “our best hope of speedily gaining the city is rather in the dissensions of the Moors than our own sacred arms. The walls are strong, the population still numerous; and, under Muza Ben Abil Gazan, the tactics of the hostile army are, it must be owned, administered with such skill as to threaten very formidable delays to the period of our conquest. Avoiding the hazard of a fixed battle, the infldel cavalry harass ou camp by perpetual skirmishes; and in the mountain defiles our detachments cannot cope with their light horse and treacherous ambuscades. It is true that, by dint of time, by the complete devastation of the Vega, and by vigilant prevention of convoys from the sea-towns, we might starve the city into yielding: but, alas ! my lords, our cnemies are scattered and numerous, and Grenada is not the only place before which the standard of Spain should be unfurled. Thus situated, the lion does not disdain to serve himself of the fox; and, fortunately we have now in Grenada an ally that fights for us. I have actual knowledge of all that passes within the Alhambra: the king yet remains in his
“Sire, yes, accompanied by a miil en.” He hath kept his word: admit them. Ha, holy father thy visits are always balsam to the heart.” “Save you my son!” returned a man in the robes of a Dominican friar, who had entered suddenly and without cere. mony by anothor part of the tent and who now seated himself with smileles composure at a little distance from the king. There was a dead silence for so moments; and Perez still lingered within the tent, as if in doubt whether the to trance of the friar would not prevent of delay obedience to the king's command. On the calm face of Ferdinand hims' appeared a slight shade of discomposit and irresolution. when the monk thus * sumed: “My presence, my son, will not, I to disturb your conference with the infilo sith you deem worldly policy demon's your parley with the men of Belial" “Doubtless not—doubtless not,” return ed the king, quickly; then, muttering" himself, “how wondrously doth this ho man penetrate into all our movements on designs l’’ he added, aloud, “Let the mes. senger enter.” Perez bowed and withdrew. . During this time the young prince " | l unborn. King of Spain!", he continued “Sire,” replied Almamen, with touch
clined in listless silence on his seat; and on his delicate features was an expression of weariness which augured but ill of his fitness for the stern business to which the lessons of his wise father were intended to educate his mind. His, indeed, was the age, and his soul, for pleasure; the tumult of the camp was to him but a holyday exhibition; the march of an army the exhiliration of a spectacle; the court was a banquet, the throne the best seat at the entertainment. The life of the heir apparent to the life of the king-possessive is as the distinction between enchanting hope and tiresome satiety.
The small gray eyes of the friar wandered over each of his royal companions with a keen and penetrating glance, and then settled in the aspect of humility on the rice carpets that bespread, the floor: nor did he again lift them till Perez, reappearing admitted to the tent the Israelite Almamen, accompanied by a female figuse, whose long veil, extending from head to foot, could conceal neither the beautiful proportlons nor the trembling agitation of her frame. . . . .
“When last, great king, I was admitled to thy presence” said Almamen, “thou didst make question of the sincerity and faith of thy servant; thou didst ask me for a surety of my faith; thou didst demand a hostage; and didst refuse further parley without such pledge were yielded to thee. Lo! I place under thy kingly care this maiden—the sole child of my house—as surety of my truth; | intrust to thee a life dearer than my OWn.”
"You have kept faith with us stranger,” said the king, in that soft and musical voice which well disguised his deep craft and his unrelenting will; “and the maidon whom you intrust to our charge shall be ranked with the ladies of our royal COñsort.”
ing earnestness, “you now hold the powor of life and death over all for whom his heart can breathe a prayer or cher*h a hope, save for my countrymen and oy religion. This solemn pledge between to and me I render up without scruple Without fear. To thee I give a hostage, "in thee I have but a promise.”
“But it is the promise of a king, a Christian, and a knight,” said the king, with dignity rather mild than arrogant : “among monarchs, what hostage can be more sacred' Let this pass; how proceed affairs in the rebel city ?” “May this maiden withdrwere I answer my lord the king?” said Almamen. The young prince started to his feet, “Shall I conduct this new charge to my mother ?” he asked, in a low voice, addressing Ferdinand, The king half smiled: “The holy father were a better guide,” he returned in the same tone. But though the Dominican heard the hint, he retained his motionless posture; and Ferdinand, after a momentary gaze on the friar, turned away. “Be it so Juan,” said he, with a look meant to convey caution to the prince; “Perez shall accompany you to the queen; return the moment your mission is fulfilled—we want your pres ence.” While this conversation was carried on between the father and son, the Hebrew was whispering, in his sacred tongue, words of comfort and remonstrance to the maiden; but they appeared to have but little of the desired effect; and suddenly falling on his breast, she wound her arms around the Hebrew, whose breast shook with strong emotions, and exclaimed passionately, in the same language, “Oh my father! what have I done why send me from thee / why intrust thy child to the stranger ? Spare me, spare me!” “Child of my heart!” returned the Hebrew, with solemn but tender accents, “even as Abraham offered up his son, must I offer the upon the altars of our faith; but oh, Leila 1 even as the angel of the Lord forbade the offering, so shall thy youth be spared, and thy years reserved for the glory of generations yet
in the Spanish tongue, suddenly and eagerly, “you are a father; forgive my weakness and speed this parting.” Juan approached; and, with respectful courtesy, attempted to take the hand of the maiden. • “You !” said the Israelite, with a dark frown. “Oh king ! the prince is young.” “Honour knoweth no distinction of age,” answered the king. “What ho, Perez accompany this maiden and the prince to the queen's pavilion.” The sight of the sober years and grave countenance of the attendant seemed to reassure the Hebrew. He strained Leila in his arms; printed a kiss upon her forehead without removing her veil; and then, placing her almost in the arms of Perez, turned away to the farther end of the tent, and concealed his face with his hands. The king appeared touched; but the Dominican gazed upon the whole scene with a sour scowl. Leila still paused for a moment; and then, as if recovering her self-possession, said, aloud and distinctly, “Man deserts me; but I will not forget that God is over all.” Shaking of the hand of the Spaniard, she continued, “Lead on ; I follow thee!” and left the tent with a steady and even majestic step. “And now,” said the king, when alone with the Dominican and Almamen, “how proceed our hopes” “Boabdil,” replied the Israelite, “is aroused against both his army and their leader Muza; the king will not leave the Alhambra: and this morning, ere I left the city, Muza himself was in the prisons of the palace.” “How !” cried the king, starting from his seat. “This is my work,” pursued the Hebrew, coldly, “It is these hands that are shaping for Ferdinand of Spain the keys of Grenada.” “And right kingly shall be your guerdon,” said the Spanish monarch. “meanwhile, accept this earnest of our favour.” So saying, he took from his breast a chain of massive gold, the links of which were curiously inwrought with gems, and extended it to the Israelite. Almamen moved not. A dark flush upon the countenance bespoke the feeling he with difficulty restrained. “I sell not my foes for gold, great king,” said he, with a stern smile ; “I sell my foes to buy the ransom of my friends.” “Churlish 1” said Ferdinand, offended; “but speak on man! speak on 1" “If I place Grenada, ere two weeks are past, within thy power, what shall be my reward 7" “Thou didst talk to me, when last we
met, of immunities to the Jews.” The calm Dominican looked up as the king spoke, crossed himself, and resumed his attitude of humility. “I demand for the people of Israel,” returned Almamen, “free leave to trade and abide within the city, and follow ther callings, subjected only to the same laws and the same imposts as the christian posulation.” “The same laws and the same imposts' Humph there are difficulties in the con: cession. If we refuse?” “Our treaty is ended. Give me back the maiden; you will have no further need of the hostage you demanded; I return to the city, and renew our interviews no more.” Politic and cold-blooded as was the temperament of the great Ferdinand, he had yet the imperious and haughty nature of a prosperous and long-descended king; and H. bit his lip in deep displeasure at the tone of the dictatorial and stately stranger. “Thou usest plain language, my friend," said he: “my words can #. as rudely spoken. Thou art in my power, and canst return not save at my permission.” “I have your royal word, sir, for free entrance and safe egress,” answered Almamen. “Break it, and Grenada is with the Moors till the Darro runs red with the blood of her heroes, and her people strew the vales as the leaves in autumn.” “Art thou, then, thyself of the Jewish faith?” asked the king. “If thou art not, wherefore are the outcasts of the world so dear to thee!” “My fathers were of that creed, royal Ferdinand; and if I myself desert their creed, I do no desert their cause. Oh king ! are my terms scorned or accepted" “I accept them: provided, first, that thou obtainest the exile or death of Muza; secondly, that, within two weeks of this date, thou bringest me, along with the chief councellors of Grenada, the written treaty of the recapitulation and the keys of the city. Do this, and, though the sole king in Christendon who dares the hazard, I offer to the Israelites throughout Anda. lusia the common laws and rights of citi. zens of Spain; and to thee I will accord such dignity as may content thy ambi
The Hebrew bowed reverently, and drew from his breast a scroll, which he placed on the table before the king. “This writing, mighty Ferdinand, contains the articles of our compact.” “How knave wouldst thou have us commit our royal signature to conditions with such as thou art, to the chance of the public eye? The king's word is the king's bond l’” The Hebrew took up the scroll with imperturable composure. “My child !” said he; “will your majesty summon back my child? we would depart?” “A sturdy mendicant this, by the Virgin' " muttered the king; and then, speaking aloud, “Give me the paper I will scan it.” Running his eyes hastily over the words, Ferdinand paused a moment, and then drew towards him the implements of writing, signed the scroll, and returned it to Almamen. The Israelite kissed it thrice with oriental veneration, and replaced it in his breast.
command the secrets of palaces, and render vain the counsels of armed men, have I not in that attested that I am one of whom a wise king can make an able servant 7” “Thou art a subtle reasoner, my friend,” said Ferdinand, smiling gently. “Peace go with thee! our conference for this time is ended. What ho, Perez' " The attendent appeared. “Thou hast left the maiden with the queen 1" “Sir, you have been obeyed.” “Conduct this stranger to the guard who led him through the camp. He quits us under the same protection. Farewell I Yet stay; thou art assured that Muza Ben Abil Gazan is in the prisons of the Moor 7” • Yes.” “Blessed be the Virgin " “Thou hastheard our conference, Fath. er Tomas?” said the king, anxiously, when the Hebrew had withdrawn. “I have, son.” “Did thy veins freeze with horror?”
“Only when my son signed the scroll. It seemed to me then that I saw the cloven foot of the tempter.”
“Tush, father i. tempter would have been more wise than to reckon upon a aith which no ink and no parchment can render valid, if the church absolve compact. Thou understandest me, father?”
“I do. I know your pious heart and well-judging mind.”
“Thou wert right,” resumed the king, musingly, “when thou didst tell us that these catiiff Jews were waxing strong in the fatness of their substance. They would have equal laws—the insolent blas. phemerers!” “Son!” said the Dominican, with
I have avowed sentiments less abject, and developed qualities higher than those of the mere bargainer for sordid power,
earnest adjuration, “God, who has prospered your arms and councils, will re. quire at your hands an account of the
oughtst thou not to rejoice that chance power intrusted to you. Shall there be has thrown into thy way one whose intel- no difference between his friends and his lect and faculties may be made thy tool? foes—his disciples and his curcifiers?”
If I betray another, that other is my “Priest, said the king, laying his hand deadily foe. Dost not thou, the lord of on the monk's shoulder, and with a satarmies, betray thine enemy? the Moor is urhinesmile upon his countenance, “where an enemy bitterer to myself than to thee. religion silent in this matter, policy has a Pecause I betray an enemy, am I un-voice loud enough to make itself heard, worthy to serve a friend? ... If I, a single. The Jews demand equal rights: when m
man, and a stranger to the Moor, can yet demand equality with their masters, tres. **.*.*. yet equality heir . reo
son is at work, and justice sharpens her sword. Equality these wealth usurers! Sacred Virgins they would soon be buying up our kingdoms.” The Dominican gazed hard on the king. “Son, I trust thee,” he said in a low voice and glided from the tent.
THE AMBUSH, the STRIFE, AND THE CAPTURE.
The dawn was slowly breaking over the wide valley of Grenada, as Almamen pursued his circuitous and solitary path back to the city. He was now in a dark aud entangled hollow, covered with brakes and bushes, from amid which tall forest-trees rose in frequent intervals, gloomy and breathless in the still morning air. As, emerging from this jungle, if so it may be called, the towers of Grenada, gleamed upon him, a human conntenance peered from the shade, and Alman:en started to see two dark cyes fixed upon his own. He halted abruptly and put his hand on his dagger, when a low sharp whistle from the apparition before him was answered around, behind; and, ere he could draw breath, the Israelite was begirt by a group of Moors in the garb of peasants. “Well, my masters,” said Almamen, calmly, as he encountered the wild savage countenances, that glared upon him, “think you there is aught to fear from the solitary santon?” “It is the magician,” whispered one man to his neighbor; “let him pass.” “Nay,” was the answer, “take him before the captain; we have orders to seize on all we meet.” This counsel prevailed; and, gnashing his teeth with secret rage, Almamen sound himself hurried along by the peasants through the thickest part of the copse. At length the procession stopped in a semicular patch of rank swad, in which several head of cattle were quietly grazing, and a yet more numerous troop of peasants reclined around upon the grass. “Whom have we hear !” asked a voice
which startled back the dark blood from *
Almamen's cheek: and a Moor of com. manding presence rose from the midst of his brethren. “By the beard of the prophet, it is the false santon! What dot thou from Grenada at this hour !” | “Noble Muza,” returned Almamen, who, though indeed amazed that one whom he had imagined his victim was thus un, accountably become his judge, retained, at least, the semblance of composure, “my answer is to be given only to my lord the king; it is his commands that I obey.” | “Thou art aware,” said Muza, frown. ing, “that thy life is forfeited without al. peal? Whatsoever inmate of Grenadais found without walls between sunrise and sunset dies the death of a traitor and deserter.” “The servants of the Alhambra are excepted,” answered the Israelite, with: out changing countenance. “Ah!” muttered Muza, as a painful and sudden thought seemed to cross him, “can it be possible that the rumour of the city hath truth, and that the monarch of Gre. nada is in treaty with the foe!” Hemu sed a little; and then motioning the Moors to withdraw, he continued aloud, “Almamen, answer me truly; hast thou sought the Christian camp with any message from the king?” “I have not.” “Art thou without the walls on the mis. sion of the king 2* * “If I be so, I am a traitor to the king should I reveal his secret.” “I doubt the much, santon,” said Muzi, after a pause; “I know thee for my ene: my, and I do believe thy counsels ho poisoned the king's ear against me, his people, and his duties. But no matter, thy life is spared a while; thou remaines: with us, and with us shalt thou return to the king.” “But, noble Muza—” “I have said Guard the Santon; mount him upon one of chargers; he s abide with us in our ambush.” While Almamen chased in vain at his arrest, all in the christian camp was Xo, still. At length, as the sun began to Ho himself above the mountains, first a mo" mur, and then a din, betokened wariko preparations. Several parties of horse under gallant and experienced lead”