Imatges de pàgina
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ERRATA.

P. 22, line 3 from bottom, for interior read interview,
126, line 14

for invented read inherited.
50, line 18

for as read or.

SPECIMENS

OF THE

NOVELISTS AND ROMANCERS.

CERVANTES.

All the world has laughed over Don Quixote de la Mancha, and some have wept--for, although the humour of that inimitable book is felt by all, the pathos of it is felt only by those who, like the Renowned Knight himself, live in worlds of their own creating, and strain at things that belong not to the element in which they move.-But the other works of Cervantes are little known; and this induces us to select the rather from them, for, besides that they are truly excellent in themselves, the circumstance that they were written by the author of Don Quixote must make them doubly valuable to every man of proper taste and feeling

In the following story we take the translation of Shelton in preference to the more modern ones, as it abounds in that rich and quaint turn of phrase which renders some of the

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old English authors so delightful, and is, at the same time, more consonant, in idiom and gravity of diction, with the language in which the story was originally composed.

RODOLPHO AND LEOCADIA.

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In a hot summer's night, there returned from recreating themselves at the river of Toledo, an ancient gentleman, ac i companied with his wife, a young son, a daughter of the age of seventeen years, and a maid-servant. The night was clear and bright, the hour eleven, the way open, and their pace slow, that they might not lose through weariness those pleasures which the meadows, lying along the river side of Toledo, did afford them. And relying on the security, which the strict course of justice, and the well-disposed people of that city did promise, the good old gentleman went walking leisurely along with his small family, far from any thought of the least disaster that might befall them. But, forasmuch as misfortunes commonly then come when we least think on them, contrary wholly to his thought, and quite beyond all imagination, there happened one which disturbed their present pleasure, and gave them occasion to weep many years after. There was a gentleman of that city about the age of twenty-two, whom his great wealth, his nobleness of blood, his depraved disposition, his too much assumed liberty, and the loose and licentious company that he kept, made to do such insolent and extravagant actions, as did ill beseem his quality, and gave him the attribute of impudent and insolent.

This gentleman then (whose name for good respect we shall conceal, and call Rodolpho) with four other friends of his, all young men full of jollity, and above all exceeding insolent, were coming down the same hill which the old gentleman was going up. These two companies met each other—that of the sheep with that of the wolves, -and in a most uncivil kind of manner, void of all shame and honesty, covering their own faces, they discovered those of the mother, daughter, and maid. The old man, (and I cannot blame him,) was somewhat moved thereat, reproved them for it, and told them they might be ashamed, had they any slame in them, to offer such an affront to gentlewomen. They answered him with mocks and scoffs, and without far

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ther misdemeaning themselves, they went forward on their way. But the great beauty of that fairest which Rodolpho had seen, which was that of Leocadia, (for that was the name of this gentleman's daughter) began in such sort to be imprinted on his memory, that it drew his affection after her, and stirred up in him a desire to enjoy her, in despite of all inconveniences that might follow thereupon'; and in an instant, as sudden as his passion, he imparted his mind to his companions, and both he and they presently resolved to return back, and take her from her parents by force, only therein for to please Rodolpho: For your great and rich men, who are lewdly and licentiously given, shall never want those that will canonize their evil actions, and qualify their bad courses for good. And therefore the hatching of this wicked purpose, the communicating it, the approving of it, and the resolving upon it, to carry away Leocadia, and the putting of it in execution, was done, as it were, all in an instant. They covered their faces with their handker. chiefs, and drawing out their swords they came back, and had not gone many steps before they had overtaken those, who had not as yet fully made an end of giving thanks unto God, for having freed them from the hands of those bold and insolent persons. Rodolpho seized on Leocadia, and taking her up in his arms, ran away with her with all the haste he could, who had not strength enough to defend herself from this violence; and the sudden passion that possessed her was so prevalent, that it took away the use of her voice, so that she could not cry out; and likewise the light of her eyes, since that being in a swoon, and without any sense, she neither saw who carried her, nor whither he was carrying her. Her father cried out, the mother shrieked, her little brother wept and cried both together, the maid she tore her hairs and face; but neither their cryings nor shriekings were heard, neither did their tears move compas. sion, nor the tearing up of furrows in their faces do them any good. For the solitariness of the place, the still silence of the night, and the cruel bowels of the malefactors, concurred to give way to this deed of darkness. In a word, the one went their way glad and joyful, and the other ,sad and mournful. Rodolpho came home to his house without any let or hinderance; and the parents of Leocadia to theirs, grieved, afflicted, and full of despair: They were blind, wanting their daughter's eyes, which were the light of theirs; they were all alone, lacking the sweet and pleas

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