Obrazy na stronie

Greek, set with busts: from vases in the hall
Flowers of all heavens, and lovelier than their names,
Grew side by side ; and on the pavement lay
Carved stones of the Abbey-ruin in the park,
Huge Ammonites, and the first bones of Time;
And on the tables every clime and age
Jumbled together; celts and calumets,
Claymore and snowshoe, toys in lava, fans
Of sandal, amber, ancient rosaries,
Laborious orient ivory sphere in sphere,
The cursed Malayan crease, and battle-clubs
From the isles of palm : and higher on the walls,
Betwixt the monstrous horns of elk and deer,

His own forefathers' arms and armour hung.

And ‘this,” he said, ‘was Hugh's at Agincourt; And that was old Sir Ralph's at Ascalon: A good knight he we keep a chronicle With all about him” — which he brought, and I

Dived in a hoard of tales that dealt with knights

Half-legend, half-historic, counts and kings
Who laid about them at their wills and died;
And mixt with these, a lady, one that arm'd
Her own fair head, and sallying thro' the gate,

Had beat her foes with slaughter from her walls.

And, I all rapt in this, * Come out,’ he said, “To the Abbey: there is Aunt Elizabeth And sister Lilia with the rest.” We went (I kept the book and had my finger in it) Down thro’ the park: strange was the sight to me; For all the sloping pasture murmur'd, sown With happy faces and with holiday. There moved the multitude, a thousand heads: The patient leaders of their Institute Taught them with facts. One rear'd a font of stone And drew, from butts of water on the slope, The fountain of the moment, playing now A twisted snake, and now a rain of pearls,

Or steep-up spout whereon the gilded ball

Danced like a wisp : and somewhat lower down
A man with knobs and wires and vials fired
A cannon : Echo answer'd in her sleep
From hollow fields: and here were telescopes
For azure views; and there a group of girls
In circle waited, from the electric shock
Dislink'd with shrieks and laughter: round the lake
A little clock-work steamer paddling plied
And shook the lilies : perch'd about the knolls
A dozen angry models jetted steam :
A petty railway ran: a fire-balloon
Rose gem-like up before the dusky groves
And dropt a fairy parachute and past:
And there thro' twenty posts of telegraph
They flash'd a saucy message to and fro
Between the mimic stations; so that sport
With Science hand in hand went ; otherwhere
Pure sport: a herd of boys with clamour bowl'd
And stump'd the wicket; babies roll'd about

Like tumbled fruit in grass; and men and maids

Arranged a country dance, and flew thro' light
And shadow, while the twangling violin
Struck up with Soldier-laddie, and overhead
The broad ambrosial aisles of lofty lime

Made noise with bees and breeze from end to end.

Strange was the sight and smacking of the time; And long we gazed, but satiated at length Came to the ruins. High-arch'd and ivy-claspt, Of finest Gothic, lighter than a fire, Thro' one wide chasm of time and frost they gave The park, the crowd, the house; but all within The sward was trim as any garden lawn : And here we lit on Aunt Elizabeth, And Lilia with the rest, and Ralph himself, A broken statue propt against the wall, As gay as any. Lilia, wild with sport, Half child, half woman as she was, had wound A scarf of orange round the stony helm,

And robed the shoulders in a rosy silk,

That made the old warrior from his ivied nook
Glow like a sunbeam : near his tomb a feast
Shone, silver-set; about it lay the guests,
And there we join'd them: then the maiden Aunt
Took this fair day for text, and from it preach'd
An universal culture for the crowd,
And all things great; but we, unworthier, told
Of college: he had climb'd across the spikes,
And he had squeez’d himself betwixt the bars,
And he had breathed the Proctor's dogs; and one
Discuss'd his tutor, rough to common men
But honeying at the whisper of a lord;
And one the Master, as a rogue in grain

Veneer'd with sanctimonious theory.

But while they talk'd, above their heads I saw The feudal warrior lady-clad; which brought My book to mind; and opening this, I read Of old Sir Ralph a page or two that rang

With tilt and tourney; then the tale of her

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