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engine, of which I was chimney; and that the oars were merely put out for the sake of the picturesque. And thus the ludicrous appearance was somewhat the same as that of Leporello in Don Giovanni, who mechanically moves his limbs in the action of swimming, although he is, in reality, carried along on terra firma.
Having advanced at the rate of a mile in three quarters of an hour, we overtook a long string of barges, which, after the fashion in this county, were towed up the stream by two or three horses with the appropriate animals upon them, leaving a complement of four or five men to manage the craft. As they kept the middle of the river, and left us little space for the use of our oars, we vainly made several attempts to stem the current which ran violently by their side, and to shoot before their long file. Now, Cambridge men, be it known, are mightily fond of having their own way* Some irascible feelings were, therefore, I am compelled to say, made manifest upon the occasion. As to myself, as I make it a rule never to be in a passion, I mightily enjoyed the contrast of fire on one side, and ice on the other. Here, one old bargee, without deigning to attend to us, busily employed himself in haranguing his horses in the bargee lingo, which I'll be hanged if any but the brute animals could ever understand. Another with a face of the most imperturbable calmness was leaning upon the tiller, and staring as he smoked his pipe, with the greatest unconcern both at us and our efforts; a third-in reply to our swearing and blustering, derided us with “ dom it--you don't pool, pool away.” Cambridge blood could bear no more:-rhetoric was vain, and patience vainer: the barges were boarded and the helm usurped, and as they were so impudent as to aver they were the better steerers, we were under the disagreeable necessity of cutting their ropes--and then left them ; flattering ourselves we had effectually roused them from their lethargic calmness, and reversed the fire and ice. I will not say that a black eye or so was not the consequence of this skirmish-but this only served to enhance the pleasure ; it sobered some, and roused others; so that in the midst of jests of black eyes and rain-bows,' &c., all in the Byronite style, we proceeded at a very respectable rate towards Cambridge.
It was half past five, and some of the chapel bells were ringing, as we arrived at Barnwell Pool, which is distant half a mile from the university. It might have seemed, to a casual observer, that our feelings were now pretty much the same as at our passing the same spot some hours before; but there were also some minuter shades from which a different result might be deduced. We were still supremely happy, but the manifes
* N. B.This feature of character is generally perceptible in undergraduates, only when they are in the right. But some of them, when they grow older, for instance, when they become fellows, &c., are not very particular about the right or wrong, but will have their way, because, as Lord B. says, they may.
tation of that happiness was changed: this was, in the first place, apparent from the character of our songs. In place of our “ Row, Brothers, row,” and “ Merrily, merrily rung the Bells,” which we had sported so gaily in the morning, our voices were engaged in singing, with great pathos, “ Those Evening Bells,” and such-like melancholy ditties. G-, in the mean time, was employed in parodying a passage from Parisina ; and he had
nearly dispelled the pathetic feelings induced by the “ Evening . Bells," from the laugh which it caused.
The chapel bells are ringing
Both mournfully and slow,
With a deep sound to and fro;
Hark! the men are singing,
They've often cursed for dunning so. In the next place our regard was averted from ourselves and our boat, to the beauties of eve, and of the surrounding scenery.
It was one of those transcendent evenings, which, while from their very singularity at this time of the year, they appear more lovely, must necessarily send to the heart the feeling of summer. The sun was about setting behind the majestic walls of King's College Chapel, (a fit resting-place for such a deity), and ere he sank to repose, threw upon the waters a long line of liquid light, which,
Unquench'd, and glowing, appears to glide
Like a lava stream through the darker tide.
There was not wind enough to twirl
On the topmost twig that looks up at the sky.
the softness of the hour Steal on the heart as dew along the flow'r, it was natural that our attention should also be directed to the objects which that sun now beautified.
The right bank of the river was fringed with its constant willows; and on the left the undulating turf, the broken state of the ground, and the appearance of “ ruined ruins” in the background, told that, in years past, this spot had been the residence of other beings; but beings as quiet and innocent as the sheep which now fed there. This ground had formerly been the site of Barnwell nunnery. In my usual manner, I felt very much
inclined to moralize on the fate of the pale melancholy girls who once walked and prayed there. But unfortunately for my sentimental ideas, I heard H- and B- in a violent dispute on a calculation of the odds against these same pale girls remaining nuns for one week, supposing the nunnery still to exist. They at last came to a conclusion, but the odds were so enormous, that I am afraid to venture on inserting them here'; lest our mathematical talents should be questioned by some, who know not, so well as you or I, that in being
The first to scale a lady's bow'r, some Cambridge men would not yield to any Don Juan that ever existed.
But the sun shed his parting glory this evening on the heaving mound, as sweetly as ever he did in times of yore. And long may it be, before, on the spot where these gentle creatures lifted up their innocent faces to gaze on his departure, he shall smile on houses, whose inhabitants, mocking the, purity of a life they could not imitate, and laughing at the feelings they could not comprehend, will look equally upon his rise, meridian splendour, or decline,
Without the reverence and the rapture due
As I am in this form. If you are not inclined to come the Sir P. Teazle part again, my boat-friends are. In my ecstasy, I unfortunately turned the rudder the wrong way, and made a sort of a tack
“ Holloa, T- , what the devil are you at?”—“Oh! in the heroics."
Well, throw them off at present, or your long face may infect us,and K- begins to look pathetic.”
“ Come, let's at least go in in style."
And this I believe we did: for though I certainly perceived one or two gownsmen laughing, yet to counterbalance this, old Cross put on a most insinuating smile, and told us we “ kim in wall." " I dare say he was right.
The day, commenced in merriment, was concluded in noise, and if we any of us retired sober to bed, it was not the fault of S—'s claret.-Well, adieu, I'm very tired of this long prosy letter, and if you are not the same, it is only because you were long ago asleep. Believe me, when you awake, Your sincere and affectionate Friend,
THE YOUNG MOUNTAINEER.
Oye valleys of ice, and ye frost-girted fields,
Ye sons of pale sloth, in your chambers of rest,
How dear is the path that conducts to my shed,
Hark! the thunder of battle now breaks on my ear!
The trumpet of victory thrills on my soul,
Ye tenants of heather, of mountain and fen,
Unerring my arrow, full swift was my spear;
Fare thee well, lowly shed, fondest hope shall be thine,
Pure nature has watch'd o'er my dawning of bliss,
M. A. M. SONG.
Oh where is the blush, on the maiden's fair cheek,
That glow'd with such delicate hue ?
A bosom so tender and true ?
Where meek shame with tenderness strove;
Was the gladness of innocent love?
And faded its delicate hue;
Though her heart still is tender and true.
of saints and of seraphs above;
In the cold tears of desolate love.
Or the rose on that faded cheek bloom ;
eye dim and rayless illume.
of thy bridal must prove; For earth cannot solace, and art cannot save The heart-broken victim of love.
TO THE EVENING STAR.
The night of the tomb!