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The Spanish Armada--

Part I.,

D. Hume,

Part II.,

To Ocean, .

Lord Byron,

The Character of Elizabeth,

D. Hume,

The Character of Lord Falkland, Lord Clarendon,

Comparison between Cromwell and

Napoleon,

Lord Macaulay,

Ode to Napoleon Bonaparte,

Lord Byron,

The Struggle between the French

and English in Southern India-

Part I.,

Lord Macaulay,

Part II.,

Part III.,

Lochiel's Warniny,

T. Campbell,

William Pitt,

J. R. Green,

Speech at the Guildhall

, Bristol,

E. Burke,

To Milton,

W. Wordsworth,

The

American Love of Freedom,

Canadian Loyalty,

Eord Differin,

The Chief Actors in the French

Revolution,

E. Burke,

The Forced Recruit, .

Mrs. Browning,

The Assault of Badajoz-

Part I.,

Sir W. Napier,

Part II.,

Going down with News of Victory,: De Quincey,

The Arsenal at Springfield,

H. W. Longfellow,

Speech in Reply to the Address of

the Mennonite Settlers,

Lord Dufferin,

John Bull,

Washington Irving, .

Trial Scene in the Merchant of Venice, W. Shakespeare,

Of Goodness and Goodness of Nature, Francis Bacon,

Of Discourse,

The Venerable Bede,

J. R. Green,

Friends Departed,

H. Vaughan,

Of Studies,

Francis Bacon,

Of Nature in Men,

The Function of a University,

J. H. 'Newman,

What is Literature?.

Cardinal Newman,

The Genius of Pope,

S. Johnson,

Flowers without Fruit,

Cardinal Newman,

Pope and Dryden,

S. Johnson,

The Virtues of Language,

J. Ruskin,

The Birth of Verse,

Lewis Morris,

Shakespeare,

E. Dowden,

Westminster Abbey,

Washington Irving,

Morning Hymn in the Garden of Eden, J. Milton,

Explanatory Notes, .

Glossary, .

Biographical Notes:

327

360

377

HYMN TO LIGHT.

Hail, holy Light ! offspring of Heaven first-born
Or of the Eternal coeternal beam,
May I express thee unblamed ? since God is light
And never but in unapproached light
Dwelt from eternity, dwelt then in thee,
Bright effluence of bright essence increate !
Or hearest thou rather, pure ethereal stream,
Whose fountain who shall tell ? before the sun,
Before the heavens thou wert, and at the voice
Of God, as with a mantle, didst invest
The rising World of waters dark and deep,
Won from the void and formless Infinite.
Thee I revisit now with bolder wing,
Escaped the Stygian pool, though long detained
In that obscure sojourn, while in my flight,
Through utter and through middle darkness borne,
With other notes than to the Orphean lyre,
I

sung of Chaos and eternal Night;
Taught by the heavenly Muse to venture down
The dark descent, and up to reascend,
Though hard and rare :—thee I revisit safe,
And feel thy sovran vital lamp; but thou
Revisitest not these eyes, that roll in vain
To find thy piercing ray, and find no dawn;
So thick a drop serene hath quenched their orbs,
Or dim suffusion veiled. Yet not the more
Cease I to wander where the Muses haunt,
Clear spring, or shady grove, or sunny hill,
Smit with the love of sacred song ; but chief
Thee, Sion, and the flowery brooks beneath,

That wash thy hallowed feet, and warbling flow,
Nightly I visit: nor sometimes forget
Those other two equalled with me in fate,
So were I equalled with them in renown,
Blind Thamyris and blind Mæonides,
And Tiresias and Phineus, prophets old :
Then feed on thoughts, that voluntary move
Harmonious numbers ; as the wakeful bird
Sings darkling, and in shadiest covert hid,
Tunes her nocturnal note. Thus with the year
Seasons return; but not to me returns
Day, or the sweet approach of even or morn,
Or sight of vernal bloom, or summer's rose,
Or flocks, or herds, or human face divine ;
But cloud instead, and ever-during dark
Surrounds me, from the cheerful ways of men
Cut off, and, for the book of knowledge fair,
Presented with a universal blank
Of Nature's works, to me expunged and rased,
And wisdom at one entrance quite shut out.
So much the rather thou, celestial Light,
Shine inward, and the mind through all her powers
Irradiate ; there plant eyes, all mist from thence
Purge and disperse, that I may see and tell
Of things invisible to mortal sight.

J. MILTON.

1

ASPECTS OF CLOUDS.

STAND upon the peak of some isolated mountain at daybreak, when the night-mists first rise from off the plains, and watch their white and lake-like fields, as they float in level bays and winding gulfs about the islanded summits of the lower hills, untouched yet by more than dawn, colder and more quiet than a windless sea under the moon of midnight ; watch when the first sunbeam is sent upon the silver

channels, how the foam of their undulating surface parts and passes away, and down under their depths the glittering city and green pasture lie like Atlantis, between the white paths of winding rivers; the flakes of light falling every moment faster and broader among the starry spires, as the wreathed surges break and vanish above them, and the confused crests and dirges of the dark hills shorten their grey shadows

upon

the plain. Wait a little longer, and you shall see those scattered mists rallying in the ravines, and floating up towards you, along the winding valleys, till they couch in quiet masses, iridescent with the morning light, upon the broad breasts of the higher hills, whose leagues of massy undulation will melt back and back into that robe of material light, until they fade away, lost in its lustre, to appear again above, in the serene heaven, like a wild, bright, impossible dream, foundationless and inaccessible, their very bases vanishing in the unsubstantial and mocking blue of the deep lake below.

Wait yet a little longer, and you shall see those mists gather themselves into white towers, and stand like fortresses along the promontories, massy and motionless, only piled with every instant higher and higher into the sky, and casting longer shadows athwart the rocks ; and out of the pale blue of the horizon you will see forming and advancing a troop of narrow, dark, pointed vapours, which will cover the sky, inch by inch, with their grey network, and take the light off the landscape with an eclipse which will stop the singing of the birds and the motion of the leaves, together; and then you will see horizontal bars of black shadow forming under them, and lurid wreaths create themselves, you know not how, along the shoulders of the hills ; you never see them form, but when you look back to a place which was clear an instant ago, there is a cloud on it, hanging by the precipices, as a hawk pauses over his prey. And then you will hear the sudden rush of the awakened wind, and you will see those watch-towers of vapour swept away from their foundations, and waving curtains of opaque rain let down to the valleys, swinging from the burdened clouds in black bending fringes, or pacing in pale columns along the lake level, grazing its surface into foam as

they go.

And then, as the sun sinks, you shall see the storm drift for an instant from off the hills, leaving their broad sides smoking, and loaded yet with snow-white, torn, steam-like rags of capricious vapour, now gone, now gathered again ; while the smouldering sun, seeming not far away, but burning like a red-hot ball beside you, and as if you could reach it, plunges through the rushing wind and rolling cloud with headlong fall, as if it meant to rise no more, dyeing all the air about it with blood.

And then you shall hear the fainting tempest die in the hollow of the night, and you shall see a green halo kindling on the summit of the eastern hills, brighter—brighter yet, till the large white circle of the slow moon is lifted up among the barred clouds, step by step, line by line ; star after star she quenches with her kindling light, setting in their stead an army of pale, penetrable, fleecy wreaths in the heaven, to give light upon the earth, which move together, hand in hand, company by company, troop by troop, so measured in their unity of motion, that the whole heaven seems to roll with them, and the earth to reel under them.

And then wait yet for one hour, until the east again becomes purple, and the heaving mountains, rolling against it in darkness, like waves of a wild sea, are drowned one by one in the glory of its burning : watch the white glaciers blaze in their winding paths about the mountains, like mighty serpents with scales of fire : watch the columnar peaks of solitary snow, kindling downwards, chasm by chasm, each in itself a new morning ; their long avalanches cast down in keen streams brighter than the lightning, sending each his tribute of driven snow, like altar-smoke, up to the heaven ; the roselight of their silent domes flushing that heaven about them and above them, piercing with purer light thrc igh its purple

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