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At last-as from a cloud, his fulgent head
Their mighty chief returned.
Spenser in a most romantic chapter of the Fairy Queen (Book 2), seems to have taken the idea of a benighting from Apollonius, as well as to have had an eye to some passages of the Odyssey ; but like all great poets, what he borrows, only brings worthy companionship to some fine invention of his own. It is a scene thickly beset with horror. Sir Guyon, in the course of his voyage through the perilous sea, wishes to stop and hear the Syrens : but the Palmer his companion dissuades him;
When suddeinly a grosse fog over spred
That all things one, and one as nothing was,
Thereat they greatly were dismayd, ne wist
And with theyr wicked wings thém oft did smight,
Even all the nation of unfortunate
: : : : : : :
All these, and all that else does horror breed,
Whiles th’ one did row, and th' other stifly steare.
The poet who is the most conversant with mists, is Ossian, who was a native of the north of Scotland or Ireland. But we have not his works by us, and must give a specimen or two next week.
We must mention another instance of the poetical use of a mist, if it is only to indulge ourselves in one of those masterly passages of Dante, in which he contrives to unite minuteness of detail with the most grand and sovereign impressiveness. It is in a lofty comparison of the planet Mars looking through morning vapours; the reader will see with what (Pur. Canto 2, v. 10). Dante and his guide Virgil have just left the infernal regions, and are lingering on a solitary sea-shore in purgatory, which reminds us of that still and farthoughted verse.
Lone sitting by the shores of old romance.
are ancora, &c.
Like men, who musing on their journey, stay
At rest in body, yet in heart are gone ;
Red Mars looks deepening through the foggy heat,
Down in the west, far o'er the watery way;
A light, which came so swiftly o’er the sea,
That never wing with such a fervour beat.
Of my sage leader, when its orb had got
More large meanwhile, and came more gloriously:
Of white about it; and beneath the white
Another. My great master uttered not
Fanned into wings; but soon as he had found
Who was the mighty voyager now in sight,
It is God's Angel." -* These are the famous terzetti or triplets of the Italians, which are linked together like a chain; the fresh rhyme in the middle of every stanza being connected with the first and last lines of the next. We think we recollect that Mr. Hayley has given a specimen of a translation of Dante in the original measure. If not, the present one is perhaps the first that has appeared in the language ; which we mention, of course, as a mere curiosity.
THE SHOEMAKER OF VEYROS.
A PORTUGUESE TRADITION,
In the time of the old kings of Portugal, Don John, a natural son of the reigning prince, was governor of the town of Veyros, in the province of Alentejo. The town was situate (perhaps is there still), upon a mountain, at the foot of which runs a river ; and at a little distance there was a ford over it, under another eminence. The bed of the river thereabouts was so high as to form a shallow sandy place; and in that clear spot of water, the maidens of Veyros, both of high rank and humble, used to wash their clothes.
It happened one day, that Don John, riding out with a company,
came to the spot at the time the young women were so employed : and being, says our author, a young and lusty gallant,” he fell to jesting with his followers upon the bare legs of the busy girls, who had tucked up their clothes, as usual, to their work. He passed along the river; and all his company had not yet gone by, when a lass in a red petticoat, while tucking it up, shewed her legs somewhat high ; and clapping her hand on her right calf, said loud enough to be heard by the riders, “Here's a white leg, girls, for the Master of Avis."'*
These words, spoken probably out of a little lively bravado, upon the strength of the governor's having gone by, were repeated to him when he got home, together with the action that accompanied them: upon which the young lord felt the eloquence of the speech so deeply, that he contrived to have the fair speaker brought to him in private; and the consequence was, that our lively natural son, and his sprightly challenger, had another natural son.
Ines (for that was the girl's name) was the daughter of a shoemaker in Veyros; a man of very good account, and wealthy. Hearing how his daughter had been sent for to the young governor's house ; and that it was her own light behaviour, that subjected her to what he was assured she willingly consented to; he took it so to heart, that at her return home, she was driven by him from the house, with every species of contumely and spurning. After this, he never saw her
And to prove to the world and to himself, that his severity was a matter of principle, and not a mere indulgence of his own passions, he never afterwards lay in a bed, nor eat at a table, nor changed his linen, nor cut his hair, nails, or beard; which latter grew to such a length, reaching below his knees, that the people used to call him Barbadon, or old Beardy.
In the meantime, his grandson, called Don Alphonso, not only grew to a man, but was created Duke of Braganza; his father Don John having been elected to the crown of Portugal; which he wore after such noble fashion, to the great good of his country, as to be surnamed the Memorable. Now the town of Veyros stood in the middle of seven or eight others, all belonging to the young Duke, from whose palace at Villa Viciosa. it was but four leagues distant. He therefore had good intelligence of the shoemaker his grandfather ; and being of a humane and truly generous spirit, the accounts he received of the old man's way of life made him at last extremely desirous of paying him a visit. He accordingly, went with a retinue to Veyros; and meeting Barbadon in the streets, he alighted from his horse, bare-headed ; and in the presence of that stately company and the people, asked the old man his blessing. The shoemaker, astonished at this sudden spectacle, and at the strange contrast which it furnished to his humble rank, stared in a bewildered manner upon the unknown personage, who thus knelt to him in the public way ; and said, “Sir, do you mock me?"
,” answered the Duke; « May God so help me, as I do not: but in earnest I crave I may kiss your hand and receive your blessing, for I am your grandson,
BLO* An order of knighthood, of which Don John was Master.
and son to Ines your daughter, conceived by the king, my lord and father.'s No sooner had the shoemaker heard these words, than he clapped his hands before his eyes, and said, “ God bless me from
And ever beholding the son of so wicked a daughter as mine was! yet, forasmuch as you are not guilty of her offence, hold ; take my hand and my blessing, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” So saying, he laid one of his old hands upon the young man's head, blessing him; but neither the Duke nor his followers could persuade him to take the other away from his eyes; neither would he talk with him a word more. 1; In this spirit, shortly after, he died: and just before his death he directed a tomb to be made for him, on which were sculptured the tools belonging to his trade, with this epitaph :-9999 $123005This sépůlchrè Barbadon caused to be made,
(Being of Veyros, a shoemaker by his trade) 3
Excepting his daughter Ines in The author says that he has “ heard it reported by the ancientest persons, that the fourth Duke of Braganza, Don James, son to Donna Isabel, sister to the King Don Emanuel, caused that tomb to be defaced, being the sepulchre of his fourth grandfather." +
As for the daughter, the conclusion of whose story comes lagging in like a penitent, "she continued,” says the writer, « after she was delivered of that son," a very chaste and virtuous woman'; and the king made her commandress of Santos, a most honourable place, and very plentiful; to the which none but princesses were admitted, living, as it were, abbesses and princesses of a monastery built without the walls of Lisbon, called Santos, that is Saints, founded by reason of some martyrs that were martyred there. And the religious women of that place have liberty to marry with the knights of their order, before they lenter into that holy profession."vie sono!!
The rest of our author's remarks are in too curious à spirit to be omitted. “In this mionastery," he says, « the same Donna Ines died, leaving behind her a glorious reputation for her virtue and holiness. ; Observe, gentle reader, the constancy that this Portuguese, a shoemaker, continued in, loathing to behold the honourable estate of his grandchild, nor would any more acknowledge his daughter, hava ing been a lewd woman, for purchasing advancement with dishonour: This considered, you will not wonder at the Count Julian, that plagued Spain, and executed the king Roderigo for forcing his daughter la Cava. The example of this shoemaker is especially worthy the noting, and deeply to be considered; for, besides that it makes good our assertion, it teaches the higher not to disdain the lower, as long as they be virtuous and lovers of honour. It may be that this old man, for his integrity, rising from a virtuous zeal, merited that a daughter coming by descent from his grandchild, should be made Queen of Castile, and the mother of great Isabel, grandmother to the Emperor Charles the Fifth, and Ferdinando.”
i * We have retained the homely translation of our informant as most likely to resemble the cast of the original. His account of the story is to be found in the Supplement to the Adventures of Don Sebastion: Harleian Miscellany, Vol. 2. We omitted to mention last week, that the ground-work of the article licaded Gilbert! Gilbert! was from Turner's History of England from the Norman Conquest to the Accession of Edward the First: Chap. 9. We thank the correspondent who has sent ús the account of Gilbert Becket's mother, from the Quadrilogus, which is Mr. Turner's own authority ; but he will doubtless perceive, that we cannot afford room to indulge in extracts, the main spirit of which has already been given.
of It appears by this, that the Don John of the tradition is John the 1st, who was elected king of Portugal, and became famous for his great qualities, and that his son by the alleged shoemaker's daughter was his successor, Alphonso the 5th.
Alas! a pretty posterity our shoemaker had, in Philip the 2d and his successors,-a race more suitable to his severity against his child, than his blessing upon his grandchild. Old Barbadon was a fine fellow too, after his fashion. We do not know how he reconciled his unforgiving conduct with his christianity; but he had enough precedents on that point. What we admire in him is, his shewing that he acted out of principle, and did not mistake passion for it. His crepidarian sculptures indeed are not so well; but a little vanity may be allowed to mingle with and soften such edge-tools of self-denial, as he chose to handle. His treatment of his daughter was ignorant, and in wiser times would have been brutal; especially when it is considered how much the conduct of children is modified by education and other circumstances : but then a brutal man would not have accompanied it with such voluntary suffering of his own. Neither did Barbadon leave his daughter to take her chance in the wide world, thinking of the evils she might be enduring, only to give a greater zest of fancied pity to the contentedness of his cruelty. He knew she was well taken care of; and if she was not to have the enjoyment of his society, he was determined that it should be a very uncomfortable one to himself. He knew that she lay on a princely bed, while he would have none at all. He knew that she was served upon gold and silver, while he renounced his old chesnut table, the table at which she used to sit. He knew while he sat looking at his old beard and the wilful sordidness of his hands, that her locks and her fair limbs were objects of worship to the gallant and the great. And so he set off his destitutions against her over-possession; and took out the punishment he gave her, in revenge upon himself. This was the instinct of a man who loved a principle, but hated nobody: ---of a man, who in a wiser time, would have felt the wisdom of kindness. Thus his blessing upon his grandchild becomes consistent with his cruelty to his child : and his living stock was a fine one in spite of him. His daughter shewed a sense of the wound she had given such a father, by relinquishing the sympathies she loved, because they had hurt him: and her son, worthy of such a grandfather and such a daughter, and refined into a gracefulness of knowledge by education, thought it no mean thing or vulgar to kneel to the grey-headed artisan in the street, and beg the blessing of his honest hand.
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