Imagens das páginas
PDF
ePub

London Magazine:

A JOURNAL OF ENTERTAINMENT AND INSTRUCTION

FOR GENERAL READING.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][graphic][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][subsumed][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]
[blocks in formation]

01 - The Death of Keeldar" appeared in “ The Gem" of 1829. The editor, T. Hood, acknowledges it in these words in his preface :" To Sir W. Scott, not merely a literary feather in my cap, but a whole plume of them, I owe, and with the hand of my heart acknow. ledge, a deep obligation. A poem from his pen is likely to confer on the book that contains it, if not perpetuity, at least a very Old Mortality."

THE PRIVILEGES OF VIENNA.

aded in his palace, but remained unsubdued. He des

patched his children to the Tyrol for safety, and remained The Austrian is an absolute monarchy, but not in himself with the famous Father Lamorinain, his Conour sense of the word, the exercise of the imperial power fessor, waiting, to all appearance, till his insurgent subI being checked and circumscribed, in almost every pro

jects should formally come to take his crown. rince, by a number of privileges enjoyed by the subjects,

The Protestant barons, emboldened by the rapid pro

gress of their party in Bohemia, determined, by a bold for the most part of great antiquity, which the good

stroke, to bring the crisis to a conclusion. The townsense or good feeling of the government has hitherto

guard consisted entirely of citizens, and made no diffiuniformly respected. As King of Hungary, and Prince culty about surrendering to them the charge of the of Transylvania, the Emperor has to share the legis- Emperor's person. All the regiments which might

lative and executive power with the Diets of both these have stood in their way were removed to posts at a I countries. Every other province but Dalmatia has its distance, and, one by one, the counsellors in whom he particolar assemblies, though the rights of those pro

had any confidence were withdrawn. Their purpose

was at once to compel Ferdinand by force to sign their 'pincial assemblies greatly differ, and extend but a very

La very | demands, which he had hitherto steadily refused. These 1 little way. The principal cities, again, have their mu- / demands' embraced a national representation, absolute

nicipal privileges, some of them of great importance, | liberty of conscience, and equality of privileges for Ca

and among these Vienna, the capital, has been especially tholics and Protestants in all matters civil and political. | favoured.

Not that they expected that the Emperor, knowing With the single exception of the Emperor Rudolph,

what his character was, would consent, but his refusal who generally lived at Prague, Vienna has at all times

would give them a tangible pretext for effecting his

deposition. been the residence of the heads of the house of Habs

| Early one morning, when all was ready, the conspibarg, and the unshaken fidelity of its inhabitants has rators, sixteen in number, with Thouradl, the leader of been rewarded by the steady favour of their sovereigns. the citizens, at their head, entered the imperial palace, Most of their municipal privileges date from signal acts and made their way without difficulty to the Emperor's of loralty and devotion; and the most important were chamber. Ferdinand was alone, but nothing could bestowed by Leopold I. in acknowledgment of the des- shake his determination not to sign the paper. Thouperate heroism with which, in 1683, under the com- radl, at last, exasperated beyond patience, and fixed to mand of Stahremberg, they held out the city against stick at nothing in the execution of his purpose, seized the Turks, unassisted by regular troops, till relieved by the diminutive emperor by the collar of his dress, and

the approach of Sobieski. The possession of these pri- shook him violently in his powerful hands.-“ Little , rileges, which are too numerous to be specified, com- | Ferdinand, wilt thou sign?" he said, in a voice half

bined with the opulence derived from the lavish expen-choked with fury,"sign this moment, or, little as I diture of the great aristocratic families, have given the thou art, I will find means to shorten thee still."

Viennese a degree of personal independence, and a dis! At this very moment, (the story here savours of the position to act energetically when called upon, which is marvellous.) a blast of trumpets rose from the court not equally characteristic of the lowland inhabitants of below. All rushed to the windows, and there they bethe hereditary states.

held, drawn up in squadron, with their sabres bared, the The burgomaster, (burg-meister,) who is the head and cuirassiers of the Dampierre regiment, five hundred representative of these wealthy citizens, in many re strong. The sight was the more unlooked-for, as these ? spects resembles the Lord Mayor of London, and is in very men had, on account of their known loyalty, been

513 own sphere even a more important person. His sent only a few days before to Linz, more than a hunelection, indeed, must be confirmed by the Emperor, dred miles off. which puts him much more than the English dignitary Almost at the same instant, before they could conunder the control of the government; but, on the other jecture even how the regiment could be there, when, hand, when he is elected, his power is much greater. only two days before, their agents had written them His office is for life, and he cannot be removed from it. word that it was at Linz, three raps were heard at the He has the personal liberty of every citizen subject to door, announcing the arrival of some new actor in this hin; the absolute command of the police; the colonel extraordinary scene. The door opened, and the Marquis ship of the city militia, which, by the bye, is the finest de St. Hilaire, the colonel of the cuirassiers, entered and best drilled force of the kind in Europe ; and many in complete armour. Bending reverentially to the potent offices besides. Prince Metternich himself is less Emperor, he inquired his orders. than him in (at least nominal) dignity, so long as he Ferdinand till now had been pale as ashes, but the reiniins at Vienna, and the Emperor alone can give him colour now rushed to his cheeks. His eyes sparkled, orders.

and he commanded the sixteen conspirators to be seized The city privileges in their turn are curtailed and in on the spot. No sooner said than done,-twenty cuirasterrupted by others of an equally historical origin, siers rushed up the staircase, and they, who five attaching mostly to different military bodies. One of minutes before had been his masters, were now borne these, from the singularity of its observance, and of the hurriedly away to execution. Thouradl, by some means incident with which it is connected, is deserving of or other, was lucky enough to escape, but the others all more attention than it has met with hitherto.

were hung the self-same day outside the town. A The Emperor Ferdinand II, had hardly seated beautiful suburb since then has sprung up on the spot, himself on the throne of his predecessor, Matthias, the name of which, ("Herrnhals," Lords'-neck,) indiwhen the religious storm which had been gathering rectly recalls the memory of this terrible act of retri. orer Germany, and which ended in the famous Thirty bution. Years' War, burst on him at once. Bohemia, under the Of the authenticity of this story there is no doubt, Count Thurn, the dissidents of Silesia and Moravia, but nothing is known to account for its principal incithose of Upper and Lower Austria, -nearly all his Ger. dent. When Ferdinand asked the Marquis de St. Himan subjects in short,-either took up arms, or openly laire from whom he had received his orders to march on warered in their fidelity. Bethlen Gabor and the Turks Vienna, the brave soldier, greatly surprised at such a threatened him on the side of Hungary, and the Pro. question from such a quarter, drew from under his cuirass testants of Carinthia and Carniola joined the insurgents. a paper, bearing the seal of state, and the Emperor's llone amid enernies,- for the inhabitants of Vienna, signature. It was a letter ordering the colonel without at that time, were either Protestants or favourers of the delay to get hold of all the boats on the Danube he reformed faith,--the Emperor was at last fairly block. I could find, and embark in them with as many of his

men as could be got together on the spur of the moment, i At Prague, where he sought refuge, and not without leaving word for the rest to follow in the shortest pos- difficulty found it, his beloved wife and youngest boy sible time. You will descend the river to Vienna," Ldied from the effects of terror and fatigue. the instructions continued, “ you will pass through the town as silently as possible, and draw up at the palace.

whelmed with anguish, the count left Prague for When there, you will seek the Emperor without having

Vienna, as the former city suggested only saddening yourself announced, and further act as he shall direct.” recollections; in the latter, where many of his friends

Ferdinand, after reading the letter attentively through, resided, his sorrows gradually died away in the circle of was obliged to allow that the hand and seal were so per those dear relatives, and, when the ardently desired fectly imitated that they might well mislead, but denied

peace had assuaged the sufferings of the exhausted having ever issued any orders of the kind, or even thought of so doing, as the watch kept over his slightest actions |

country, a calm but settled desire drew him to the forwould have put it out of his power to communicate with

saken place of his birth, to the tombs of his ancestors; his faithful subjects. His punctilious regard for truth and he proposed to celebrate there the marriage feswas well known; and as his mysterious protector never | tival of his oldest and now only son. came to light, the chroniclers are reduced to a variety Count Frederick was an amiable young man, and of incongruous suppositions, some ascribing all to an united, to a graceful presence and agreeable accomplishactual interposition of Providence, and others to the ments, the possession of large domains. · He was a jesuit Lamormain. That which is certain is, that this was the turning

general favourite in society, and had many friends; he point of Ferdinand's eventful history. Henceforward designed and painted, was successful in taking likeeverything went well with him. Boucquoi overthrew nesses, and had thus a large volume of portraits of his Count Mansfeldt, Prague surrendered, and the Bohe-acquaintances, executed during his travels. He had mians were finally put down. Germany streamed with seen Paris, Madrid, and parts of Italy, and, for the time blood, but the imperial arms still conquered, and Tilly in which he lived, and for his position in the world, he and Wallenstein entered upon that career which was destined to crown them with undying laurel.

was regarded as a kind of wonder. His father looked Upon his miraculous deliverance, Ferdinand, having

| forward to his prospects with joy and pride, and what good reason to distrust the citizens, kept the Dampierre increased the gratifying anticipations of the old nobleregiment near him. For three successive days and man was the general opinion of his son's good morals, nights, the men remained under arms in the palace which he had, happily, on all occasions known how to court, and revelled at the Emperor's cost, while the preserve, and bring back uncorrupted to his native Marquis de St. Hilaire was lodged in the Emperor's country. own apartments. Ever since, the same regiment has ! For a long time past, family arrangements and youthpreserved the privilege, whenever its route lies through ful inclinations had marked out Luitgarde and Count Vienna, of marching through the city, with trumpets Frederick for each other. The old count did not simply sounding and flags displayed, to the imperial palace, love in his niece the faithful resemblance of a dear sister; where it remains in quarters three days and three nights, he loved in her the innocent character, the calm good and feasts ad libitum at the Emperor's cost. The sense, which the stormy events of that period had colonel dismounts, ascends the staircase without being developed earlier than years are accustomed to do. announced, knocks three times, and inquires the Em Her childhood and early youth were passed at Prague, peror's orders. As there are no more rebels to hang. I and at Vienna, among her kindred ;-Count Frederick's these are limited to an invitation to the palace for three studies and travels had separated her for a long time days. A room of state is assigned him. The standard from him, and she now looked forward with internal of the regiment hangs over his door, and a sentinel satisfaction to a meeting and a union with the playmate stands before it as before that of the sovereign.

of her childhood, which, since the development of her intellect, she was accustomed to consider as the most agreeable epoch of her life. She clung with an infantine tenderness to her uncle, and willingly accepted his pro

posal to accompany him to Bohemia, and, in his society BLACK FRITZ.

in his solitary castle, to await the arrival of Count

| Frederick. AN EPISODE OF THE THIRTY YEARS' war.

In sanguine anticipations of happier times did they

travel, during an abundant harvest, through the golden CHAP. I.

fields of rich Austria. On the Bohemian frontiers the It was on a gloomy autumnal evening of the year 1648. scene changed; the thirty years'suffering from a religious that Count Martinitz, with his niece Luitgarde, after a long

and social war had left inextinguishable traces on the long absence, drove up to the castle of his ancestors. Many

country-villages in which some poor huts began to rise

amidst fallen half-consumed rafters,-pallid figures, from years before, in spite of the horrors of the Thirty Years' |

whose eyes spake want and misery,-large extents of War, he had not been able to resolve on abandoning the uncultivated land,- towns without trade and without proresidence of his affections ; courageously he braved the visions,-complaints of the brutality of the peasantry, of first storms of the devastating inroads, the consequences the insecurity of the roads,-bore a cruel testimony, of the battle of Prague, and many other untoward events.

everywhere, to its destructive consequences. Luitgarde's He hoped, as negotiations were already begun, to have

cheerful heart gradually sank within her : silent and full

of thought she sat near her uncle, in whose soul the reached the haven of repose in his native home, when,

surrounding imagery of wretchedness seemed to call up quite unexpectedly, Banner's and Torstenson's ferocious heart-rending recollections. The clear autumnal weather bands penetrated with fire and sword, and the irresisti gave place to dark foggy days; the gloomy envelope that ble wave rolled in the direction of his neighbourhood. covered the minds of Luitgarde and her uncle seemed to Nothing now remained, therefore, but to fly with his

have extended itself over all nature; a misty rain conwife and child, and to yield up his castle to the destroy.

tinually pattered through the brown-coloured foliage of ing hordes.

the forest, and a chilling breeze chased the falling leaves into the waves of the Moldaw, which, with deep monoto

nous stream, flowed close to the road. At the nearest ? By the Author of “Quentin Matsys," and founded, like it, on turning of the way the grey walls of a handsome castle historical facts.

| presented themselves to view; the count first observed it,

« AnteriorContinuar »