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On the 1st of July they left us. If ever shadow of future ill darkened the present hour, such was over my mind when they went. During the whole of our stay at Lerici, an intense presentiment of coming evil brooded over my mind, and covered this beautiful place and genial summer with the shadow of coming misery. I had vainly struggled with these emotions
-they seemed accounted for by my illness; but at this hour of separation they recurred with renewed violence. I did not anticipate danger for them, but a vague expectation of evil shook me to agony, and I could scarcely bring myself to let them go. The day was calm and clear; and, a fine breeze rising at twelve, they weighed for Leghorn. They made the run of about fifty miles in seven hours and a half. The Bolivar was in port; and, the regulations of the Health-office not permitting them to go on shore after sunset, they borrowed cushions from the larger vessel, and slept on board their boat.
sailing. Shelley and Williams made longer excursions; they sailed several times to Massa. They had engaged one of the seamen who brought her round, a boy, by name Charles Vivian; and they had not the slightest apprehension of danger. When the weather was unfavourable, they employed themselves with alterations in the rigging, and by building a boat of canvas and reeds, as light as possible, to have on board the other for the convenience of landing in waters too shallow for the larger vessel. When Shelley was on board, he had his papers with him; and much of the Triumph of Life was written as he sailed or weltered on that sea which was soon to engulph him.
They spent a week at Pisa and Leghorn. The want of rain was severely felt in the country. The weather continued sultry and fine. I have heard that Shelley all this time was in brilliant spirits. Not
The heats set in in the middle of June; the days became excessively hot. But the sea-breeze cooled the air at noon, and extreme heat always put Shelley in spirits. A long drought had preceded the heat; and prayers for rain were being put up in the churches, and processions of relics for the same effect took place in every town. At this time we received letters announcing the arrival of Leigh Hunt at Genoa. Shelley was very eager to see him. was confined to my room by severe illness, and could not move; it was agreed that Shelley and Williams should go to Leg-long before, talking of presentiment, he horn in the boat. Strange that no fear of had said the only one that he ever found danger crossed our minds! Living on the infallible was the certain advent of some sea-shore, the ocean became as a play- evil fortune when he felt peculiarly joyous. thing as a child may sport with a lighted Yet, if ever fate whispered of coming stick, till a spark inflames a forest, and disaster, such inaudible but not unfelt spreads destruction over all, so did we prognostics hovered around us. The fearlessly and blindly tamper with danger, beauty of the place seemed unearthly in and make a game of the terrors of the its excess: the distance we were at from ocean. Our Italian neighbours, even, all signs of civilisation, the sea at our feet, trusted themselves as far as Massa in the its murmurs or its roaring for ever in our skiff; and the running down the line of ears, -all these things led the mind to coast to Leghorn gave no more notion of brood over strange thoughts, and, lifting peril than a fair-weather inland navigation it from everyday life, caused it to be would have done to those who had never familiar with the unreal. A sort of spell seen the sea. Once, some months before, surrounded us; and each day, as the Trelawny had raised a warning voice as voyagers did not return, we grew restless to the difference of our calm bay and the and disquieted, and yet, strange to say, open sea beyond; but Shelley and his we were not fearful of the most apparent friend, with their one sailor-boy, thought danger. themselves a match for the storms of the Mediterranean, in a boat which they looked upon as equal to all it was put to do.
The spell snapped, it was all over; an interval of agonising doubt-of days passed in miserable journeys to gain tidings, of
hopes that took firmer root even as they were more baseless-was changed to the certainty of the death that eclipsed all happiness for the survivors for evermore.
There was something in our fate peculiarly harrowing. The remains of those we lost were cast on shore; but, by the quarantine-laws of the coast, we were not permitted to have possession of them-the law with respect to everything cast on land by the sea being that such should be burned, to prevent the possibility of any remnant bringing the plague into Italy; and no representation could alter the law. At length, through the kind and unwearied exertions of Mr. Dawkins, our Chargé d'Affaires at Florence, we gained permission to receive the ashes after the bodies were consumed. Nothing could equal the zeal of Trelawny in carrying our wishes into effect. He was indefatigable in his exertions, and full of forethought and sagacity in his arrangements. It was a fearful task; he stood before us at last, his hands scorched and blistered by the flames of the funeral-pyre, and by touching the burnt relics as he placed them in the receptacles prepared for the purpose. And there, in compass of that small case, was gathered all that remained on earth of him whose genius and virtue were a crown of glory to the world-whose love had been the source of happiness, peace, and good, -to be buried with him!
The concluding stanzas of the Adonais pointed out where the remains ought to be deposited; in addition to which our beloved child lay buried in the cemetery at Rome. Thither Shelley's ashes were conveyed; and they rest beneath one of the antique weed-grown towers that recur at intervals in the circuit of the massy ancient wall of Rome. He selected the hallowed place himself; there is
"the sepulchre, Oh not of him, but of our joy!—
"And gray walls moulder round, on which dull Time
Feeds, like slow fire upon a hoary brand; And one keen pyramid with wedge sublime, Pavilioning the dust of him who planned This refuge for his memory, doth stand Like flame transformed to marble; and beneath
A field is spread, on which a newer band Have pitched in heaven's smile their camp of death, Welcoming him we lose with scarce extinguished
Could sorrow for the lost, and shudder
ing anguish at the vacancy left behind, be soothed by poetic imaginations, there was something in Shelley's fate to mitigate pangs which yet, alas! could not be so mitigated; for hard reality brings too miserably home to the mourner all that is lost of happiness, all of lonely unsolaced struggle that remains. Still, though dreams and hues of poetry cannot blunt grief, it invests his fate with a sublime fitness, which those less nearly allied may regard with complacency. A year before about death as give it a glory of its own. he had poured into verse all such ideas He had, as it now seems, almost anticipated his own destiny; and, when the mind figures his skiff wrapped from sight by the thunder-storm, as it was last seen upon cloud of the tempest passed away, no sign the purple sea, and then, as the remained of where it had been1-who but will regard as a prophecy the last stanza
of the Adonais?
1 Captain Roberts watched the vessel with his glass from the top of the lighthouse of Leghorn, on its homeward track. They were off Via Reggio, at some distance from shore, when a storm was driven over the sea. It enveloped them and several larger vessels in darkness. When the cloud passed onwards, Roberts looked again, and saw every other vessel sailing on the ocean except their little schooner, which had vanished. From that time he could scarcely doubt the fatal truth; yet we fancied that they might have been driven towards Elba or Corsica, and so be saved. The observation made as to the spot where the boat disappeared caused it to be found, through the exertions of Trelawny for that effect. It had gone down in ten fathom water; it had not capsized, and, except such things as had floated from her, everything was found on board exactly as it had been placed when they sailed. The boat itself was uninjured. Roberts possessed himself of her, and decked her; but she proved not seaworthy, and her shattered planks now lie rotting on the shore of one of the Ionian islands, on which she was wrecked.
Whose sails were never to the tempest given; The massy earth and sphered skies are riven! I am borne darkly, fearfully, afar!
Whilst, burning through the inmost veil of heaven,
The soul of Adonais, like a star, Beacons from the abode where the Eternal are." On which him bore the venerable May, PUTNEY, May 1, 1839. From her immortal limbs he leaped full soon,
Nor long could in the sacred cradle keep,
But out to seek Apollo's herds would
HYMN TO MERCURY
TRANSLATED FROM THE GREEK OF
The Herald-child, king of Arcadia And all its pastoral hills, whom in sweet love
Out of the lofty cavern wandering
He found a tortoise, and cried out"A treasure!"
SING, Muse, the son of Maia and of (For Mercury first made the tortoise Jove,
The beast before the portal at his leisure
He began playing on the lyre at noon, And the same evening did he steal away Apollo's herds;-the fourth day of the moon
The babe was born at the first peep of day;
Thus having spoken, the quaint infant | Joyous and wild and wanton-such you bore,
Lifting it from the grass on which it Hear among revellers on a holiday.
And grasping it in his delighted hold,
And through the tortoise's hard stony
And with a piece of leather overlaid
He sung how Jove and May of the bright sandal
Of mighty sounds, and from his lips he
A strain of unpremeditated wit
Rushed with great leaps up to the mountain's head,
Revolving in his mind some subtle feat
Of thievish craft, such as a swindler
Driven steeds and chariot-the child meanwhile strode
When he had wrought the lovely instrument,
O'er the Pierian mountains clothed in shadows,
Where the immortal oxen of the God
He tried the chords, and made Are pastured in the flowering unmown division meet
Preluding with the plectrum, and there went
Up from beneath his hand a tumult
Lo! the great Sun under the ocean's bed has
And safely stalled in a remote abode The archer Argicide, elate and proud, Drove fifty from the herd, lowing aloud.
He drove them wandering o'er the sandy way,
But, being ever mindful of his craft, Backward and forward drove he them
So that the tracks which seemed before, were aft;
His sandals then he threw to the ocean
And for each foot he wrought a kind
Of tamarisk, and tamarisk-like sprigs,
And flower-paven plains, great Hermes past;
Till the black night divine, which favouring fell
Around his steps, grew gray, and morning fast
And on his feet he tied these sandals Now to Alpheus he had driven all
The trail of whose wide leaves might not betray
His track; and then, a self-sufficing
Like a man hastening on some distant way,
He from Pieria's mountain bent his
Wakened the world to work, and from her cell
Sea - strewn, the Pallantean Moon
But an old man perceived the infant Had pastured been, the great God made them move
Down green Onchestus heaped like beds Towards the stall in a collected drove. with grass.
So saying, Hermes roused the oxen vast;
O'er shadowy mountain and resounding dell,
They came unwearied to the lofty stall
Through the fresh fields—and when with rushgrass tall,
Lotus and all sweet herbage, every
The old man stood dressing his sunny A mighty pile of wood the God then heaped,
"Halloo! old fellow with the crooked
soon conceived the
You grub those stumps? before they Of fire, from two smooth laurel branches
will bear wine
The bark, and rubbed them in his palms,-on high
Methinks even you must grow a little
Suddenly forth the burning vapour leapt,
-andIf you have understanding-understand.”
And fine dry logs and roots innumerous He gathered in a delve upon the ground
And kindled them-and instantaneous The strength of the fierce flame was breathed around: