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GESSNER's NEW IDYLS.
DAPHNE AND CHLOE.
THE moon is already risen behind those dusky mountains; already her resplendent light shines through the trees that crown their summit. What a charm this place inspires!-CHLOE, let us rest here awhile. My brother will bring back the flocks to the fold.
CHLOE. This lovely place enchants me. The freshness of the evening is delicious. DAPHNE, we will rest here awhile.
DAPHNE. Dost thou see, CHLOE, near to that rock, the garden of the young ALEXIS? Let us approach the hedge of rose-trees that surround it. It is the most beautiful garden of the country. Is there any one whose aspect is so delightful? No: none that is cultivated with so much care.
CHLOE. Let us go to it, DAPHNE.
DAPHNE. There is no shepherd who understands so well the culture of plants as ALEXIS. there, CHLOE?
CHLOE. No; not any one.
How all things here are fresh and flourishing; what creeps upon the ground, or climbs the props. There spouts the crystal source, which, falling from the summit of the rock, murmurs through the garden's shade. Observe the point of that rock over the cascade; it is there ALEXIS has formed a bower of honeysuckles. From the bosom of that retreat, how ravishing must be the prospect of this vast campaign!
CHLOE. DAPHNE, you praise with transport. Yes, all that we see is charming. The garden of the young ALEXIS is the most delightful of all the gardens of these parts. His flowers are the most beautiful. There is no fountain whose murmurs are so sweet, whose water is so refreshing.
DAPHNE. But you smile, CHLOE.
CHLOE. No; DAPHNE, no: observe this rose which I have gathered: is not the perfume it breathes sweeter than that of all the other roses of the earth? Could it have been more delicious if cultivated by LOVE himself?
CHLOE. Ah! why would you suppress the sigh with which your bosom heaves?
DAPHNE. Come, unlucky one, let us be gone. CHLOE. SO Soon! No, this place delights me; I am so happy here! But, hark! I hear a noise! Under the dark shade of these lilacs we shall not be perceiv'd. Dost thou see him? It is ALEXIS; it is he himself. Tell me softly in my ear, is he
not more handsome than all the shepherds of this country?
DAPHNE. Ah! let me go.
CHLOE. NO; I will not let thee go. He is pensive he sighs. Surely some shepherdess has stolen his heart. My dear child, thy hand trembles in mine. Fear nothing; there is here no wolf.
The young shepherdesses conceal themselves under the thick shade of the lilacs; and ALEXIS, not knowing that he was heard, raised his melodious voice, and thus he sung:
"O thou pale and tranquil moon, be witness to my sighs and you, peaceful groves, how often have you sighed, after me, the name of DAPHNE! Tender flowers, that breathe your perfumes around me, the dew of evening glitters on your leaves, while my cheeks are bathed with the tears of love. Ah! if I dared-Why can I not say-DAPHNE! I love thee more than the bee loveth the spring!
"I found her the other day at the fountain; she came to fill a weighty jug with water. Let me, I said, with a faltering voice, carry that load, too heavy for thy arm.-You are extremely kind, she said, all trembling. I took the heavy pitcher. Timid, my sighs with pain I stifled, while, with down-cast eyes, by her side I walked; but did not dare to say-DAPHNE! I love thee more than the bee loveth the spring.
"Poor narcissus, how mournfully, by my side, thou hang'st thy head; the morning saw thee still in all thy splendor, but thou art now withered.