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Legends of the Rhine.

257

rocks of the Seven Sisters' in the river;* Sternberg and Liebenstein, the Brothers, etc., all famed by many a pa

* Perhaps you may be amused by this legend. It runs as follows:

“The Castle of Schöenberg was lofty and fair,
And seven countesses ruled there :
Lovely, and noble, and wealthy I trow-
Every sister had suiters enow.
Crowned duke and belted knight
Sigh'd at the feet of those ladies bright :
And they whispered hope to every one,
While they vow'd in their hearts they would have none !

Gentles, list to the tale I tell :
'Tis many a year since this befel:
Women are altered now, I ween,

And never say what they do not mean !
“At the Castle of Schöenberg 'twas merriment all-
There was dancing in bower, and feasting in hall;
They ran at the ring in the tilt-yard gay,
And the moments flew faster than thought away!
But not only moments—the days fled 100-
And they were but as when they first came to woo;
And spake they of marriage or bliss deferr'd,
They were silenced by laughter and scornful word !

Gentles, list to the tale I tell;
'Tis many a year since this befel,
And ladies now so mildly reign,
They never sport with a lover's pain !

“Knight look'd upon knight with an evil eye-
Each fancied a favored rival nigh;
And darker every day they frowned,
And sharper still the taunt went round,
Till swords were drawn, and lances in rest,
And the blood ran down from each noble breast;
While the sisters sat in their chairs of gold,
And smiled at the fall of their champions bold !

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thetic legend. There are also the pretty villages of Rudesheim, Geisenheim, Bingen, Oberwesel, Saint Goar, and others too tedious to mention ; and the rock of Lure. ley, with an echo which repeats seven times.

The steamboat is now before the castle of Ehrenbreit. stein, the strongest fortress in Europe, built on a rocky elevation, commanding the river for several miles. The city of Coblentz, nearly opposite, and connected with it by a floating bridge, is strongly fortified, and garrisoned by five thousand Prussian soldiers. It was founded by Drusus, the Roman general, thirteen years before Christ.

Cologne, 14th.--I am now in the ancient and honorable city of • Les Trois Rois,' and of the eleven thousand vir. gins.

On leaving Coblentz, the shores are again · flat and stale,' (though perhaps not "unprofitable' to the vinters,)

Gentles, list to the tale I tell ;
'Tis many a year since this befel,
Times have changed, we must allow,

Countesses are not so cruel now.
"Morning dawn'd upon Sehöenberg's towers,
But the sisters were not in their wonted bowers,
Their damsels sought them the castles o'er-
But upon earth they were seen no more ;
Seven rocks are in the lide,
Ober-wesel's walls beside,
Baring their cold brows to heaven:
They are called, 'The Sisters Seven.'

Gentles, list to the tale I tell;
'Tis many a year since this befel :
And ladies now may love deride,
And their suitors alone be petrified !''

Coblentz-Peculiar Beauties of the Rhine.

259

until thou comest unto Remagen, when there are a few miles of the picturesque, and then the scenery of the Rhine is finished. On the score of natural beauty, it would take a good many Rhines to make a Hudson ; but, as Willis says, here we are constantly reminded of the past ; history, tradition, and song, have given every thing a charm, and even these rough old ruins are tinted with a couleur de rose ; but amidst the hills, and streams, and forests, of the so-called new world, our thoughts stretch forward to the future. We have already the rich material, and perhaps the time will come when Europe may not claim superiority, even in works of art, or in historical associations and re. miniscences ; albeit we have no princely palaces or baro. nial strong-holds, and, thanks to our democratic rulers ! we are in no immediate danger of them.

But the Rhine is interesting-intensely so; and I can only regret, my dear that

you are not here to share with me this long.wished-for pleasure.

“The castled crag of Drachenfels

Frowns o’er the wide and winding Rhine,
Whose breast of waters broadly swells

Between the banks which bear the vine,
And bills all rich with blossom'd trees,

And fields with promise corn and wine,
And scatter'd cities crowning these,

Whose far white walls along thein shine,
Have strew'd a scene which I should see
With double joy, wert thou with me.

“ And peasant girls with deep blue eyes,

And hands which offer early flowers,
Walk smiling o'er this paradise,

Above, the frequent feudal towers

Through green leaves lift their walls of gray,

And many a rock which steeply lowers,
And noble arch in proud decay,

Look o'er this vale of vintage-bowers,
But one thing want these banks of Rhine-
Thy gentle hand to clasp in mine.

“The river nobly foams and flows,

The charm of this enchanted ground,
And all its thousand turns disclose

Some fresher beauty varying round,
The haughtiest breast its wish might bound

Through life to dwell delighted here,
Nor could on earth a spot be found

To nature and to me more dear,
Could thy dear eyes, in following mine,
Still sweeten more these banks of Rhine.”

If misery loves company, as the proverb says, why should not happiness be also sociably disposed? There is to me a special loneliness in being in these regions of song, with a crowd of strangers, but with no congenial spirit,' who in after days would recall to us the fond recollection of happy hours passed together in the distant land; who with a single word might bring vividly before us a glowing panorama of scenes remembered as a dream. And is there not even more enjoyment in these remembrances, than in the first impression ?'

Beside the Drachenfels, there are a score of ruins this side of Coblentz, such as Rolandzeck, Godesberg, and other hard names ; and we also passed the pretty town of Bonn, the seat of an ancient and well-endowed university. From one of the castles, near the river, we were saluted with three cheers by the garrison.

Landing at Cologne.

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To-morrow I shall write from Aix-la-Chapelle, for here I must say, albeit not in the Byronic vein,

“Adieu to thee, fair Rhine! How long delighted
The stranger fain would linger on his way;
Thine is a scene alike where souls united,
Or lonely Contemplation thus might stray,
And could the ceaseless vulture cease to prey
On self-condemning bosoms, it were here,
Where nature, not too sombre nor too gay,

Wild, but not rude, awful, but not austere,
Is to the mellow earth as autuinn to the year.

XXI.

PRUSSIA-BELGIUM.

PELLE-

COLOGNE-Government, etc. of Prussia-Cathedral-Aix La Cha

--Charlemagne-Relics-Liege--Quenlin Durward-NAMUR— The Mouse Waterloo-BRUSSELS- Park- Churches-SuperslilionPalaes-Railroads—ANTWERP--Cathedral-Ciladelle -Rubens-Church Tower-Chimes-GHENT--BRUGES-OSTEND -Retrospective.

Cologne, Sept. 14th. On the arrival of the steam-boat, (alias, damschiffen, or le batteau à vapeur,) the bells of the town were ringing, cannons firing, a band of music play. ing, and the quays were filled with at least five thousand people, who were kept in order by a party of soldiers. Some distinguished personage seemed to be expected in the boat, but there was none forthcoming. The military cleared a passage through the crowd, and we landed with

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