« AnteriorContinua »
nial, as his babit indicated contempt of was therefore fully displayed, and its ex. worldly splendour. His features might have pression was calculated to impress a degree been called good, had there not lurked un of awe, if not of fear, upon strangers. der the pent-house of his eye, that sly High features, naturally strong and power
epicurean twinkle which indicates the cau- fully expressive, had been burnt almost tious voluptuary. In other respects, his into Negro blackness by constant exposure profession and situation had taught him a to the tropical sun, and might, in their orready command over his countenance, dinary state, be said to slumber after the which he could contract at pleasure into storm of passion had passed away ; but the solemnity, although its natural expression projection of the veins of the forehead, the was that of good-humoured social indul- readiness with which the upper lip and its gence. ' In defiance of conventual rules, thick black moustaches quivered upon the and the edicts of popes and councils, the slighest emotion, plainly intimated that the sleeves of this dignitary were lined and tempest might be again and easily awaken. turned up with rich furs, his mantle se ed. His keen, piercing, dark eyes, told cured at the throat with a golden clasp, in every glance a history of difficulties suband the whole dress proper to his order as dued, and dangers dared, and seemed to much refined upon and ornamented, as challenge opposition to his wishes, for the that of a quaker beauty of the present day, pleasure of sweeping it from his road by who, while she retains the garb and cos à determined exertion of courage and of tume of her sect, continues to give to its will; a deep scar on his brow gave addi. sinplicity, by the choice of materials and tional sternness to his countenance, and a the mode of disposing them, a certain air sinister expression to one of his eyes, which of coquettish attraction, savouring but too had been slightly injured upon the same much of the vanities of the world.
occasion, and of which the vision, though “ This worthy churchman rode upon a perfect, was in a slight and partial degree well-fed ambling mule, whose furniture was distorted. highly decorated, and whose bridle, accord. " The upper dress of this personage re. ing to the fashion of the day, was orna. sembled that of his companion in shape, mented with silver bells. In his seat he being a long monastic mantle, but the had nothing of the awkwardness of the colour being scarlet, shewed that he did convent, but displayed the easy and habi. not belong to any of the four regular ortual grace of a well-trained horseman. In ders of monks. On the right shoulder of deed, it seemed that so humble a convey. the mantle there was cut, in white cloth, a ance as a mule, in however good case, and cross of a peculiar form. This upper robe however well broken to a pleasant and ac concealed what at first view seemed rather commodating amble, was only used by the inconsistent with its form, a shirt, namely, gallant monk for travelling on the road. of linked mail, with sleeves and gloves of A lay brother, one of those who followed the same, curiously plaited and interwoven, in the train, had, for its use upon other oc as flexible to the body as those which are casions, one of the most handsome Spanish now wrought in the stocking loom, and of jennets ever bred in Andalusia, which mer. less obdurate materials. The fore-part of chants used at that time to import, with his thighs, where the folds of his mantle grcat trouble and risk, for the use of per- permítted them to be seen, were also cosons of wealth and distinction. The saddle vered with linked mail ; the knees and feet and housings of this superb palfrey were were defended by splints, or thin plates of covered by a long foot-cloth, which reached steel, ingeniously jointed upon each other ; nearly to the ground, and on which were and mail hose reaching from the ancle to richly embroidered, mitres, crosses, and other the knee, effectually protected the legs, and ecclesiastical emblems. Another lay brother completed the rider's defensive armour. In led a sumpter mule, loaded probably with his girdle he wore a long and double-edged his superior's baggage ; and two monks of dagger, which was the only offensive weapon his own order, of inferior station, rode to about his person. gether in the rear, laughing and conyersing “He rode not a mule, like his companion, with each other, without taking much no but a strong hackney for the road, to save tice of the other members of the cavalcade. his gallant war-horse, which a squire led
“ The companion of the church digni- behind, fully accoutred for battle, with tary was a man past forty, thin, strong, chamfrom or plaited head-piece upon his tall, and muscular; an athletic figure, head, having a short spike projecting from which long fatigue and constant exercise the front. On one side of the saddle hung seemed to have left none of the softer part a short battle.axe, richly inlaid with Da. of the human form, having reduced the mascene carving; on the other the rider's whole to brawn, bones, and sinews, which plumed head-piece and hood of mail, with bad sustained a thousand toils, and were à long two-handled sword, used by the ready to dare a thousand more. His head chivalry of the period. A second squire was covered with a scarlet cap, faced with held aloft his master's lance, from the exfurg-of that kind which the French call tremity of which fluttered a small bandemortier, from its resemblance to the shape role, or streamer, bearing a cross of the of an inverted mortar, His countenance same form with that embroidered upon him
cloak. "He also carried his small triangular assembled some poorer way-farers, not shield, broad er sugh at the top to protect admitted even to that measure of hothe breast, and from thence diminishing to a nour. Among these is an aged Jew, point. It was covered with a scarlet cloth, and apparently a very poor one; who, which prevented the device from being seen. in the sequel, turns out to be a near
“ These two squires were followed by two kinsman to that celebrated Jew of ttendants, whose dark visages, white turbans, and the oriental form of their gar. York, that had so many teeth pulled ments, shewed them to be natives of some dis out of his jaws by King John; he altant eastern country. The whole appearance so is so far on his way to Ashby, of this warrior and his retinue was wild and there to seek his profit among the nuoutlandish ; the dress of his squires was gor. merous actors or attendants of the apgeous, and his eastern attendants wore sil. proaching festival. Another lonely ver collars round their throats, and bracelets guest wears the scallop-shell and cloak of the same metal upon their swarthy legs of a Palmer. He is Ivanhoe, unand arms, of which the former were naked from the elbow, and the latter from mid-leg known and unregarded in the hall of to ancle. Silk and embroidery distinguish his ancestors. At night, however, he ed their dresses, and marked the wealth and is sent for by Rowena, whose questions importance of their master ; forming, at concerning the holy shrines the Palthe same time, a striking contrast with the mer has visited, betray the object on martial simplicity of his own attire. They whom most of her imagination centre. were armed with crooked sabres, having the The Palmer does not revea, himselfhilt and baldrick inlaid with gold, and he too is on his way to the tournament, matched with Turkish daggers of yet more
and hopes to have there some nobler costly workmanship. Each of them bore at his saddle-bow a bundle of darts or javelins, opportunity of making himself known about four feet in length, having sharp to his mistress and his kindred. The steel heads, a weapon much in use among suspected wealth of the Jew in the the Saracens, and of which the memory is meantime has excited the curiosity of yet preserved in the martial exercise called the fierce templar Bois-Guilbert, and El Jerrid, still practised in the eastern coun- his Moslem slaves have received setries.
cret orders, in an oriental tongue, of • The singular appearance of this caval- which, it is well for Isaac, the Palmer cade not only attracted the curiosity of has acquired some knowledge. The Wamba, but excited even that of his less Jew is informed of his danger, and volatile companion. The monk he instante ly knew to be the Prior of Jorvaulx Abbey, assisted and accompanied early in the well known for many miles around as a morning in his escape by Ivanhoe, lover of the chase, of the banquet, and, if who takes Gurth also in his train. fame did him not wrong, of oiher worldly These three enter Ashby together, pleasures still more inconsistent with his where the kindness and protection of monastic vows."
the knight are repaid by the Jew's These personages are all on their offer to equip him with horse and arms way to a great passage of arms or tour. for the tourney. nament, about to be held by Prince The description of this tournament John, the cruel and traitorous vice- is by far the most elaborate and cer. roy of his brother, at Ashby-de-la- tainly one of the most exquisite pieces Zoŭche. They choose to take up of writing to be found in the whole their quarters for the night at the of these novels. It possesses all the abode of Cedric, where they arrive in truth and graphic precision of Froisspite of the wilful misdirections of sart—all the splendour and beauty of Gurth and Wamba ; and although Ariosto—and some of its incidents are not over welcome, are treated with all impregnated with a spirit of power and the abundant hospitality of the age. pathos, to which no one that ever beA strange group are assembled this tore described such a scene was caevening in the hall of the old Franklin. pable of conceiving any thing comIn addition to the personages already parable. noticed, there is the stately Saxon But the extent to which the present Princess Rowena, on the right hand description is carried, must prevent us of the master of the feast, and her from quoting it entire and it would train of damsels. The retainers of the be quite useless to quote a part of that household occupy their places at the which produces its happiest effect onsame table, but of course “ below the ly by reason of the skill with which salt,”-while around the hearth, at things innumerable are made to bear the nether extremity of the hall, are all upon one point. Prince John pre
sides at the lists-wanton-luxurious tened on account of the heat, which some
insolent-mean--but still a prince thing enlarged the prospect to which we al. and a Plantagenet. The lady, the lude.
A diamond necklace, with pendants queen of the day, is the beautiful of inestimable value, were by this means Rowena-she owes that eminence to
also made more conspicuous. The feather the election of the victorious knight, agraffe set with brilliants, was another dis,
of an ostrich, fastened in her turban by an whose casque, being taken off at the con
tinction of the beautiful Jewess, scoffed and clusion of the jousting, exposes to her sneered at by the proud dames who sat agaze and that of all that are present, bove her, but secretly envied by those who the pale and blood-stained features of affected to deride them.” young Ivanhoe. This champion has The appearance and behaviour of been successful in all the single com Ivanhoe, the protector of her father,
but at the conclusion of the day, makes an impression on this radiant there has been a mingled onset, where creature not the less profound, that, in, being opposed to overwhelming even for this its beginning, her love is numbers, he must have been over one of hopelessness. After the purcome, but for the timely assistance of ney is over, she has the wounded Ivana knight in black armour, bearing a hoe conveyed to the house where her fetter-lock on his shield, who very father and she are lodged, in order singularly disappears immediately af- that she may have an opportunity of terwards—thus leaving the prize and exerting, in his behalf, that medical honours of the field to the disinherit- skill which was at this period well ed son of Cedric, and the Lover of nigh confined to those of her nation, Rowena. This knight, as the reader and of which she was already celebratsoon begins to suspect, is no other ed, for possessing a far more than orthan Richard himself; and henceforth dinary portion. Here she nurses him, the whole incidents of the tale are during the night, with a mysterious made to bear upon the approaching tenderness, that makes her far more resumption of his rights, by the too than his physician; and next day, long captive monarch.
when it is necessary that her father But although Rowena be the queen and she should return to York, she of the tourney, and acknowledged by insists on taking him with them in a all to be, both by station and beauty, litter that his cure may not be left unworthy of her high place, there is one finished. They travel in company present on whom many eyes look with with Cedric the Saxon, who little suswarmer admiration, and on whom the pects that his son is the sick man in sympathies of the reader are soon fixed the litter. Their journey lies through with far intenser interest. This is another part of the same mighty forest Rebecca, the beautiful Jewess, the —the scene at this period of innumerdaughter of old Isaac, whom Ivanhoe able acts of violence and on their protected on his journey to Ashby-de- way, the party is surrounded by a set la-Zouche.
of bravos, clad like outlaws of the “ Her form was exquisitely symmetrical, wood, who convey the whole of them and was shewn to advantage by a sort of to Torquillstone, an ancient Saxon Eastern dress, which she wore according to castle, and in the possession of the the fashion of the females of her nation.- Norman Baron Front-de-Bæuf. The Her turban of yellow silk suited well with appearance of the place to which they the darkness of her complexion. The brillancy of her eyes, the superb arch of her their captors are not
are carried provokes a suspicion that eyebrows, her well-formed aquiline nose, stimulated by the ordinary desire of
mere outlaws, sion of her sable tresses, which, each ar- booty; nor is it long ere their suspiranged in its own little spiral of twisted cions are confirmed and darkened. curls, fell down upon as much of a snow The master of the band is no other white neck and bosom as a simarre of the than Brian de Bois-Guilbert, the fierce richest Persian silk, exhibiting flowers in Templar. His object is not bootytheir natural colours embossed upon a pur. but the Jewess, Rebecca, whose charms ple ground, permitted to be visible all these have filled the whole of his passionate constituted a combination of loveliness, which yielded not to the loveliest of the soul ever since he saw her at the lists maidens who surrounded her. It is true,
of Ashby. But he is furnished with that of the golden and pearl-studded clasps, the means of seizing her by Fronte-dewhich closed her vest from the throat to the Bæuf, who is anxious to get hold o waist, the three uppermost were left unfas. Isaac of York, that he may deal y
him, as the Normans of these days and for God's sake be merciful to me and thought it right to deal with Jews. to my aged father! These ornaments are Cedric, the sharer of their perils, of value, yet are they trifling to what he
would bestow to obtain our dismissal from the father, and the daughter, are conveyed to separate prisons, there to this castle, free and uninjured.”
•• Fair flower of Palestine,' replied await their separate dooms-while the the outlaw, these pearls are orient, but wounded and helpless Ivanhoe, and they yield in whiteness to your teeth; the the rest of those that attended them, diamonds are brilliant, but they cannot are flung into dungeons, there to abide match your eyes ; and ever since I have the issue of the troubles of their sup- taken up this wild trade, I have made a vow posed superiors. With the different to prefer beauty to wealth.' scenes that occur in this castle, during Rebecca ; take ransom and have mercy!
is. Do not do yourself such wrong,' said the day these captives spend there, the whole of the 2d volume is filled Gold will purchase you pleasure, -to mis.
use us, could only bring thee remorse. My and it is in this part of the book, per- father will willingly satiate thy utmost haps, that the most striking delinea- wishes ; and if thou wilt act wisely, thou tion of the spirit of those tumultuous may'st purchase with our spoils thy restoratimes is to be found.
tion to civil society-may'st obtain pardon While her father is in peril of rack for past errors, and be placed beyond the and fire unless he consents to purchase necessity of committing more.'
" It is well spoken,' replied the outlaw his freedom by giving up almost the whole of his wealth, the beautiful in French, finding it difficult probably to
sustain in Saxon a conversation which ReJewess is threatened with a fate neither becca had opened in that language ; but less dark nor less severe. The high know, bright lily of the vale of Bacca ! and majestic spirit of the damsel, that thy father is already in the hands of a expressed in the style of her beauty powerful alchemist, who knows how to con. and demeanour, forms the very charm vert into gold and silver even the rusty bars that has fascinated and subdued the of a dungeon grate. The venerable Isaac proud-souled Templar Bois-Guilbert; is subjected to an alembic, which will die but he little suspects what a bar- stil from him all he holds dear, without any rier the very element of his cap- Thy ransom must be paid by love and
assistance from my requests or thy entreaty: tivation is about to oppose against beauty, and in no other coin will I accept the fulfilment of his guilty wishes. it." An old Saxon hag, the worn-out « « Thou art no outlaw,' said Rebecca, harlot of Fronte-de-Bæuf, is dise in the same language in which he addressed placed from her apartment at the sum- her ; ‘no outlaw had refused such offers. mit of one of the towers of the castle to No outlaw in this land uses the dialect in make room for Rebecca-and it is here which thou has spoken. Thou art no outthat she receives the first visit of her law, but a Norman—a Norman, noble per. lover. “He woos her as the lion wooshaps in birth–O be so in thy actions, and
cast off this fearful masque of outrage and his bride.”
violence.' “ The prisoner trembled, however, and
" • And thou, who canst guess so truly, changed colour, when a step was heard on
said Brian de Bois-Guilbert, dropping the the stair, and the door of the turret chama mantle from his face,' art no true daugh. ber slowly opened, and a tall man, dressed ter of Israel, but in all, save youth and as one of those banditti to whom they owed beauty, a very witch of Endor. I am not their misfortune, slowly entered, and secured the door behind him ; his cap, pulled down
an ow tlaw, then, fair rose of Sharon, And
I am one who will be more prompt to hang his face, and he held his mantle in such a monds, which so upon his brows, concealed the upper part of thy neck and arms with pearls and dia
h so well become them, than to manner as to muffle the rest. In this guise, deprive thee of time
nse ornaments.' as if prepared for the execution of some deed
hlist thou have of me,' at the thought of which he was himself a.
said Rebecca, if not my wealth ? _We can shamed, he stood before the affrighted pric have nought in common between us. You soner ; yet, ruffian as his dress bespoke him, he seemed at a loss to express what purpose
are a Christian-1 & "he laws, alike of the
were contrary to Xti had brought him thither, so that Rebecca, church, and the syna ca , replied the Temp
zogue.' making an effort upon herself, had time to anticipate his explanation. She had already lar, laughing : • wed w to were the queen of
“• It were so indeeët ith a Jewess ? Desa unclasped two costly bracelets and a collar, pardieux ! - Not if she its les, sweet daughwhich she hastened to proffer to the suppos. Sheba. And know, besit the most Christian ed outlaw, concluding naturally that to gra ter of Zion, that were the Christian daughtify his avarice was to bespeak his favour. king to offer me his most
6. Take these,' she said, 'good friend, ter, with Languedoc for a don
1. What would
jury, I could not
wed her. It is against my vow to love any ner, and under high penalties, such intrigues maiden, otherwise than par amours, as I as he now prosecuted, and that, in some in. will love thee. I am a Templar. Behold stances, even degradation had followed upon the cross of my holy order.'
it thou art sharp-witted,' he said, but “ • Darest thou appeal to it,' said Re- loud must be thy voice of complaint, if it becca, on an occasion like the present.' is heard beyond the iron walls of this castle;
*** And if I do so,' said the Templar, within these, murmurs, laments, appeals
it concerns not thee, who art no believer to justice, and screams for help, die alike in the blessed sign of our salvation.' silent away. One thing only can save thee,
“ • I believe as my fathers taught,' said Rebecca. Submit to thy fate-embrace our Rebecca ; and may God forgive my belief religion, and thou shalt go forth in such if erroneous ! But you, Sir Knight, what state, that many a Norman lady shall yield is yours, when you appeal without scruple as well in pomp as in beauty to the favouto that which you deem most holy, even rite of the best lance among the defenders of while you are about to transgress the most the Temple.' solemn of your vows as a knight, and as a 56 • Submit to my fate !' said Rebecca man of religion ?
• and sacred Heaven! to what fate? -em“ It is gravely and well preached, 0 brace thy religion ! and what religion can it daughter of Sirach !' answered the Temp. be that harbours such a villain ?--thou the lar; but, gentle Ecclesiastica, thy narrow best lance of the Templars !--craven Knight! Jewish prejudices make thee blind to our --forsworn Priest ! I spit at thee, and I high privilege. Marriage were an endur- defy thee. The God of Abraham's promise ing crime on the part of a Templar; but hath opened an escape to his daughtereven what lesser folly I may practise, I shall from this abyss of infamy.' speedily be absolved from at the next Pre " As she spoke, she threw open the latticed ceptory of our Order. Not the wisest of window which led to the bartizan, and in an monarchs, not his father, whose examples instant after, stood on the very verge of the you must needs allow are weighty, claimed parapet, with not the slightest screen be. wider privileges than we poor soldiers of the tween her and the tremendous depth below. Temple of Zion have won by our zeal in its Unprepared for such a desperate effort, for defence. The protectors of Solomon's Tem. she had hitherto stood perfectly motionless, ple may claim licence by the example of Bois-Guilbert had neither time to intercept Solomon.'
nor to stop her. ' As he offered to advance, “If thou readest the Scripture,' said she exclaimed, “Remain where thou art, the Jewess, and the lives of the saints, proud Templar, or at thy choice advance ! only to justify thine own license and profli- one foot nearer, and I plunge myself from gacy, thy crime is like that of him who ex the precipice; my body shall be crushed out tracts poison from the most healthful and of the very form of humanity upon the necessary herbs.'
stones of that court-yard, ere it becomes the The eyes of the Templar flashed fire at victim of thy brutality.' this reproof" • Hearken,' he said, “ Re “ As she spoke this, she clasped her becca ; I have hitherto spoke mildly to
hands and extended them towards Heaven, thee, but now my language shall be that of as if imploring mercy on her soul before she a conqueror. Thou art the captive of my made the final plunge. The Templar hesi. bow and spear-subject to my will by the tated, and a resolution which had never laws of all nations, nor will I abate an inch yielded to pity or distress, gave way to his of my right, or abstain from taking by vio. admiration of her fortitude. Come down,' lence what thou refusest to entreaty or he said, ' rash girl !—I swear by earth, and necessity.'
sea, and sky, I will offer thee no offence.' “ Stand back,' said Rebecca_stand " • I will not trust thee, Templar,' said back, and hear me ere thou offerest to com Rebecca ; s thou hast taught me better how mit a sin so deadly! My strength thou to estimate the virtues of thine Order. The may'st indeed overpower, for God made next Preceptory would grant thee absolution women weak, and trusted their defence to for an oath, the keeping of which concerned man's generosity. But I will proclaim thy nought but the honour or the dishonour of villany, Templar, from one end of Europe a miserable Jewish maiden.' to the other. I will owe to the superstition ". You do me injustice,' said the Tem. of thy brethren what their compassion plar; “I swear to you by the name which might refuse me. Each Preceptory--each I bear-by the cross on my bosom—by the Chapter of thy Order, shall learn, that, like sword on my side-by the ancient crest of a heretic, thou hast sinned with a Jewess. 'my fathers do I swear, I will do thee no inThose who tremble not at thy crime, will jury whatsoever. If not for thyself, yet for hold thee accursed for having so far dishon- thy father's sake forbear. I will be his oured the cross thou wearest, as to follow a friend, and in this castle he will need a daughter of my people.'
powerful one.' 6. Thou art keen-witted, Jewess,' re " • Alas !' said Rebecca, ' I know it but plied the Templar, well aware of the truth too well dare I trust thee?' of what she spoke, and that the rules of his *** • May my arms be reversed, and my Order condemned, in the most positive man name dishonoured,' said Brian de Bois