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Chapter 3

THE stars still shone brightly when I awoke, and Taurus high in the
southern heaven shewed that it was midnight. I awoke from disturbed dreams.
Methought I had been invited to Timon's last feast; I came with keen
appetite, the covers were removed, the hot water sent up its unsatisfying
steams, while I fled before the anger of the host, who assumed the form of
Raymond; while to my diseased fancy, the vessels hurled by him after me,
were surcharged with fetid vapour, and my friend's shape, altered by a
thousand distortions, expanded into a gigantic phantom, bearing on its brow
the sign of pestilence. The growing shadow rose and rose, filling, and then
seeming to endeavour to burst beyond, the adamantine vault that bent over,
sustaining and enclosing the world. The night-mare became torture; with a
strong effort I threw off sleep, and recalled reason to her wonted
functions. My first thought was Perdita; to her I must return; her I must
support, drawing such food from despair as might best sustain her wounded
heart; recalling her from the wild excesses of grief, by the austere laws
of duty, and the soft tenderness of regret.

The position of the stars was my only guide. I turned from the awful ruin
of the Golden City, and, after great exertion, succeeded in extricating
myself from its enclosure. I met a company of soldiers outside the walls; I
borrowed a horse from one of them, and hastened to my sister. The
appearance of the plain was changed during this short interval; the
encampment was broken up; the relics of the disbanded army met in small
companies here and there; each face was clouded; every gesture spoke
astonishment and dismay.

With an heavy heart I entered the palace, and stood fearful to advance, to
speak, to look. In the midst of the hall was Perdita; she sat on the marble
pavement, her head fallen on her bosom, her hair dishevelled, her fingers
twined busily one within the other; she was pale as marble, and every
feature was contracted by agony. She perceived me, and looked up
enquiringly; her half glance of hope was misery; the words died before I
could articulate them; I felt a ghastly smile wrinkle my lips. She
understood my gesture; again her head fell; again her fingers worked
restlessly. At last I recovered speech, but my voice terrified her; the
hapless girl had understood my look, and for worlds she would not that the
tale of her heavy misery should have been shaped out and confirmed by hard,
irrevocable words. Nay, she seemed to wish to distract my thoughts from the
subject: she rose from the floor: "Hush!" she said, whisperingly; "after
much weeping, Clara sleeps; we must not disturb her." She seated herself
then on the same ottoman where I had left her in the morning resting on the
beating heart of her Raymond; I dared not approach her, but sat at a
distant corner, watching her starting and nervous gestures. At length, in
an abrupt manner she asked, "Where is he?"

"O, fear not," she continued, "fear not that I should entertain hope! Yet
tell me, have you found him? To have him once more in my arms, to see him,
however changed, is all I desire. Though Constantinople be heaped above him
as a tomb, yet I must find him--then cover us with the city's weight,
with a mountain piled above--I care not, so that one grave hold Raymond
and his Perdita." Then weeping, she clung to me: "Take me to him," she
cried, "unkind Lionel, why do you keep me here? Of myself I cannot find him
--but you know where he lies--lead me thither."

At first these agonizing plaints filled me with intolerable compassion. But
soon I endeavoured to extract patience for her from the ideas she
suggested. I related my adventures of the night, my endeavours to find our
lost one, and my disappointment. Turning her thoughts this way, I gave them
an object which rescued them from insanity. With apparent calmness she
discussed with me the probable spot where he might be found, and planned
the means we should use for that purpose. Then hearing of my fatigue and
abstinence, she herself brought me food. I seized the favourable moment,
and endeavoured to awaken in her something beyond the killing torpor of
grief. As I spoke, my subject carried me away; deep admiration; grief, the
offspring of truest affection, the overflowing of a heart bursting with
sympathy for all that had been great and sublime in the career of my
friend, inspired me as I poured forth the praises of Raymond.

"Alas, for us," I cried, "who have lost this latest honour of the world!
Beloved Raymond! He is gone to the nations of the dead; he has become one
of those, who render the dark abode of the obscure grave illustrious by
dwelling there. He has journied on the road that leads to it, and joined
the mighty of soul who went before him. When the world was in its infancy
death must have been terrible, and man left his friends and kindred to
dwell, a solitary stranger, in an unknown country. But now, he who dies
finds many companions gone before to prepare for his reception. The great
of past ages people it, the exalted hero of our own days is counted among
its inhabitants, while life becomes doubly 'the desart and the solitude.'

"What a noble creature was Raymond, the first among the men of our time. By
the grandeur of his conceptions, the graceful daring of his actions, by his
wit and beauty, he won and ruled the minds of all. Of one only fault he
might have been accused; but his death has cancelled that. I have heard him
called inconstant of purpose--when he deserted, for the sake of love, the
hope of sovereignty, and when he abdicated the protectorship of England,
men blamed his infirmity of purpose. Now his death has crowned his life,
and to the end of time it will be remembered, that he devoted himself, a
willing victim, to the glory of Greece. Such was his choice: he expected to
die. He foresaw that he should leave this cheerful earth, the lightsome
sky, and thy love, Perdita; yet he neither hesitated or turned back, going
right onward to his mark of fame. While the earth lasts, his actions will
be recorded with praise. Grecian maidens will in devotion strew flowers on
his tomb, and make the air around it resonant with patriotic hymns, in
which his name will find high record."

I saw the features of Perdita soften; the sternness of grief yielded to
tenderness--I continued:--"Thus to honour him, is the sacred duty of
his survivors. To make his name even as an holy spot of ground, enclosing
it from all hostile attacks by our praise, shedding on it the blossoms of
love and regret, guarding it from decay, and bequeathing it untainted to
posterity. Such is the duty of his friends. A dearer one belongs to you,
Perdita, mother of his child. Do you remember in her infancy, with what
transport you beheld Clara, recognizing in her the united being of yourself
and Raymond; joying to view in this living temple a manifestation of your
eternal loves. Even such is she still. You say that you have lost Raymond.
O, no!--yet he lives with you and in you there. From him she sprung,
flesh of his flesh, bone of his bone--and not, as heretofore, are you
content to trace in her downy cheek and delicate limbs, an affinity to
Raymond, but in her enthusiastic affections, in the sweet qualities of her
mind, you may still find him living, the good, the great, the beloved. Be
it your care to foster this similarity--be it your care to render her
worthy of him, so that, when she glory in her origin, she take not shame
for what she is."

I could perceive that, when I recalled my sister's thoughts to her duties
in life, she did not listen with the same patience as before. She appeared
to suspect a plan of consolation on my part, from which she, cherishing her
new-born grief, revolted. "You talk of the future," she said, "while the
present is all to me. Let me find the earthly dwelling of my beloved; let
us rescue that from common dust, so that in times to come men may point to
the sacred tomb, and name it his--then to other thoughts, and a new
course of life, or what else fate, in her cruel tyranny, may have marked
out for me."

After a short repose I prepared to leave her, that I might endeavour to
accomplish her wish. In the mean time we were joined by Clara, whose pallid
cheek and scared look shewed the deep impression grief had made on her
young mind. She seemed to be full of something to which she could not give
words; but, seizing an opportunity afforded by Perdita's absence, she
preferred to me an earnest prayer, that I would take her within view of the
gate at which her father had entered Constantinople. She promised to commit
no extravagance, to be docile, and immediately to return. I could not
refuse; for Clara was not an ordinary child; her sensibility and
intelligence seemed already to have endowed her with the rights of
womanhood. With her therefore, before me on my horse, attended only by the
servant who was to re-conduct her, we rode to the Top Kapou. We found a
party of soldiers gathered round it. They were listening. "They are human
cries," said one: "More like the howling of a dog," replied another; and
again they bent to catch the sound of regular distant moans, which issued
from the precincts of the ruined city. "That, Clara," I said, "is the gate,
that the street which yestermorn your father rode up." Whatever Clara's
intention had been in asking to be brought hither, it was balked by the
presence of the soldiers. With earnest gaze she looked on the labyrinth of
smoking piles which had been a city, and then expressed her readiness to
return home. At this moment a melancholy howl struck on our ears; it was
repeated; "Hark!" cried Clara, "he is there; that is Florio, my father's
dog." It seemed to me impossible that she could recognise the sound, but
she persisted in her assertion till she gained credit with the crowd about.
At least it would be a benevolent action to rescue the sufferer, whether
human or brute, from the desolation of the town; so, sending Clara back to
her home, I again entered Constantinople. Encouraged by the impunity
attendant on my former visit, several soldiers who had made a part of
Raymond's body guard, who had loved him, and sincerely mourned his loss,
accompanied me.

It is impossible to conjecture the strange enchainment of events which
restored the lifeless form of my friend to our hands. In that part of the
town where the fire had most raged the night before, and which now lay
quenched, black and cold, the dying dog of Raymond crouched beside the
mutilated form of its lord. At such a time sorrow has no voice; affliction,
tamed by it is very vehemence, is mute. The poor animal recognised me,
licked my hand, crept close to its lord, and died. He had been evidently
thrown from his horse by some falling ruin, which had crushed his head, and
defaced his whole person. I bent over the body, and took in my hand the
edge of his cloak, less altered in appearance than the human frame it
clothed. I pressed it to my lips, while the rough soldiers gathered around,
mourning over this worthiest prey of death, as if regret and endless
lamentation could re-illumine the extinguished spark, or call to its
shattered prison-house of flesh the liberated spirit. Yesterday those limbs
were worth an universe; they then enshrined a transcendant power, whose
intents, words, and actions were worthy to be recorded in letters of gold;
now the superstition of affection alone could give value to the shattered
mechanism, which, incapable and clod-like, no more resembled Raymond, than
the fallen rain is like the former mansion of cloud in which it climbed the
highest skies, and gilded by the sun, attracted all eyes, and satiated the
sense by its excess of beauty.

Such as he had now become, such as was his terrene vesture, defaced and
spoiled, we wrapt it in our cloaks, and lifting the burthen in our arms,
bore it from this city of the dead. The question arose as to where we
should deposit him. In our road to the palace, we passed through the Greek
cemetery; here on a tablet of black marble I caused him to be laid; the
cypresses waved high above, their death-like gloom accorded with his state
of nothingness. We cut branches of the funereal trees and placed them over
him, and on these again his sword. I left a guard to protect this treasure
of dust; and ordered perpetual torches to be burned around.

When I returned to Perdita, I found that she had already been informed of
the success of my undertaking. He, her beloved, the sole and eternal object
of her passionate tenderness, was restored her. Such was the maniac
language of her enthusiasm. What though those limbs moved not, and those
lips could no more frame modulated accents of wisdom and love! What though
like a weed flung from the fruitless sea, he lay the prey of corruption--
still that was the form she had caressed, those the lips that meeting hers,
had drank the spirit of love from the commingling breath; that was the
earthly mechanism of dissoluble clay she had called her own. True, she
looked forward to another life; true, the burning spirit of love seemed to
her unextinguishable throughout eternity. Yet at this time, with human
fondness, she clung to all that her human senses permitted her to see and
feel to be a part of Raymond.

Pale as marble, clear and beaming as that, she heard my tale, and enquired
concerning the spot where he had been deposited. Her features had lost the
distortion of grief; her eyes were brightened, her very person seemed
dilated; while the excessive whiteness and even transparency of her skin,
and something hollow in her voice, bore witness that not tranquillity, but
excess of excitement, occasioned the treacherous calm that settled on her
countenance. I asked her where he should be buried. She replied, "At
Athens; even at the Athens which he loved. Without the town, on the
acclivity of Hymettus, there is a rocky recess which he pointed out to me
as the spot where he would wish to repose."

My own desire certainly was that he should not be removed from the spot
where he now lay. But her wish was of course to be complied with; and I
entreated her to prepare without delay for our departure.

Behold now the melancholy train cross the flats of Thrace, and wind through
the defiles, and over the mountains of Macedonia, coast the clear waves of
the Peneus, cross the Larissean plain, pass the straits of Thermopylae, and
ascending in succession Oeta and Parnassus, descend to the fertile plain of
Athens. Women bear with resignation these long drawn ills, but to a man's
impatient spirit, the slow motion of our cavalcade, the melancholy repose
we took at noon, the perpetual presence of the pall, gorgeous though it
was, that wrapt the rifled casket which had contained Raymond, the
monotonous recurrence of day and night, unvaried by hope or change, all the
circumstances of our march were intolerable. Perdita, shut up in herself,
spoke little. Her carriage was closed; and, when we rested, she sat leaning
her pale cheek on her white cold hand, with eyes fixed on the ground,
indulging thoughts which refused communication or sympathy.

We descended from Parnassus, emerging from its many folds, and passed
through Livadia on our road to Attica. Perdita would not enter Athens; but
reposing at Marathon on the night of our arrival, conducted me on the
following day, to the spot selected by her as the treasure house of
Raymond's dear remains. It was in a recess near the head of the ravine to
the south of Hymettus. The chasm, deep, black, and hoary, swept from the
summit to the base; in the fissures of the rock myrtle underwood grew and
wild thyme, the food of many nations of bees; enormous crags protruded into
the cleft, some beetling over, others rising perpendicularly from it. At
the foot of this sublime chasm, a fertile laughing valley reached from sea
to sea, and beyond was spread the blue Aegean, sprinkled with islands, the
light waves glancing beneath the sun. Close to the spot on which we stood,
was a solitary rock, high and conical, which, divided on every side from
the mountain, seemed a nature-hewn pyramid; with little labour this block
was reduced to a perfect shape; the narrow cell was scooped out beneath in
which Raymond was placed, and a short inscription, carved in the living
stone, recorded the name of its tenant, the cause and aera of his death.

Every thing was accomplished with speed under my directions. I agreed to
leave the finishing and guardianship of the tomb to the head of the
religious establishment at Athens, and by the end of October prepared for
my return to England. I mentioned this to Perdita. It was painful to appear
to drag her from the last scene that spoke of her lost one; but to linger
here was vain, and my very soul was sick with its yearning to rejoin my
Idris and her babes. In reply, my sister requested me to accompany her the
following evening to the tomb of Raymond. Some days had passed since I had
visited the spot. The path to it had been enlarged, and steps hewn in the
rock led us less circuitously than before, to the spot itself; the platform
on which the pyramid stood was enlarged, and looking towards the south, in
a recess overshadowed by the straggling branches of a wild fig-tree, I saw
foundations dug, and props and rafters fixed, evidently the commencement of
a cottage; standing on its unfinished threshold, the tomb was at our
right-hand, the whole ravine, and plain, and azure sea immediately before
us; the dark rocks received a glow from the descending sun, which glanced
along the cultivated valley, and dyed in purple and orange the placid
waves; we sat on a rocky elevation, and I gazed with rapture on the
beauteous panorama of living and changeful colours, which varied and
enhanced the graces of earth and ocean.

"Did I not do right," said Perdita, "in having my loved one conveyed
hither? Hereafter this will be the cynosure of Greece. In such a spot death
loses half its terrors, and even the inanimate dust appears to partake of
the spirit of beauty which hallows this region. Lionel, he sleeps there;
that is the grave of Raymond, he whom in my youth I first loved; whom my
heart accompanied in days of separation and anger; to whom I am now joined
for ever. Never--mark me--never will I leave this spot. Methinks his
spirit remains here as well as that dust, which, uncommunicable though it
be, is more precious in its nothingness than aught else widowed earth
clasps to her sorrowing bosom. The myrtle bushes, the thyme, the little
cyclamen, which peep from the fissures of the rock, all the produce of the
place, bear affinity to him; the light that invests the hills participates
in his essence, and sky and mountains, sea and valley, are imbued by the
presence of his spirit. I will live and die here!

"Go you to England, Lionel; return to sweet Idris and dearest Adrian;
return, and let my orphan girl be as a child of your own in your house.
Look on me as dead; and truly if death be a mere change of state, I am
dead. This is another world, from that which late I inhabited, from that
which is now your home. Here I hold communion only with the has been, and
to come. Go you to England, and leave me where alone I can consent to drag
out the miserable days which I must still live."

A shower of tears terminated her sad harangue. I had expected some
extravagant proposition, and remained silent awhile, collecting my thoughts
that I might the better combat her fanciful scheme. "You cherish dreary
thoughts, my dear Perdita," I said, "nor do I wonder that for a time your
better reason should be influenced by passionate grief and a disturbed
imagination. Even I am in love with this last home of Raymond's;
nevertheless we must quit it."

"I expected this," cried Perdita; "I supposed that you would treat me as a
mad, foolish girl. But do not deceive yourself; this cottage is built by my
order; and here I shall remain, until the hour arrives when I may share his
happier dwelling."

"My dearest girl!"

"And what is there so strange in my design? I might have deceived you; I
might have talked of remaining here only a few months; in your anxiety to
reach Windsor you would have left me, and without reproach or contention, I
might have pursued my plan. But I disdained the artifice; or rather in my
wretchedness it was my only consolation to pour out my heart to you, my
brother, my only friend. You will not dispute with me? You know how wilful
your poor, misery-stricken sister is. Take my girl with you; wean her from
sights and thoughts of sorrow; let infantine hilarity revisit her heart,
and animate her eyes; so could it never be, were she near me; it is far
better for all of you that you should never see me again. For myself, I
will not voluntarily seek death, that is, I will not, while I can command
myself; and I can here. But drag me from this country; and my power of self
control vanishes, nor can I answer for the violence my agony of grief may
lead me to commit."

"You clothe your meaning, Perdita," I replied, "in powerful words, yet that
meaning is selfish and unworthy of you. You have often agreed with me that
there is but one solution to the intricate riddle of life; to improve
ourselves, and contribute to the happiness of others: and now, in the very
prime of life, you desert your principles, and shut yourself up in useless
solitude. Will you think of Raymond less at Windsor, the scene of your
early happiness? Will you commune less with his departed spirit, while you
watch over and cultivate the rare excellence of his child? You have been
sadly visited; nor do I wonder that a feeling akin to insanity should drive
you to bitter and unreasonable imaginings. But a home of love awaits you in
your native England. My tenderness and affection must soothe you; the
society of Raymond's friends will be of more solace than these dreary
speculations. We will all make it our first care, our dearest task, to
contribute to your happiness."

Perdita shook her head; "If it could be so," she replied, "I were much in
the wrong to disdain your offers. But it is not a matter of choice; I can
live here only. I am a part of this scene; each and all its properties are
a part of me. This is no sudden fancy; I live by it. The knowledge that I
am here, rises with me in the morning, and enables me to endure the light;
it is mingled with my food, which else were poison; it walks, it sleeps
with me, for ever it accompanies me. Here I may even cease to repine, and
may add my tardy consent to the decree which has taken him from me. He
would rather have died such a death, which will be recorded in history to
endless time, than have lived to old age unknown, unhonoured. Nor can I
desire better, than, having been the chosen and beloved of his heart, here,
in youth's prime, before added years can tarnish the best feelings of my
nature, to watch his tomb, and speedily rejoin him in his blessed repose.

"So much, my dearest Lionel, I have said, wishing to persuade you that I do
right. If you are unconvinced, I can add nothing further by way of
argument, and I can only declare my fixed resolve. I stay here; force only
can remove me. Be it so; drag me away--I return; confine me, imprison me,
still I escape, and come here. Or would my brother rather devote the
heart-broken Perdita to the straw and chains of a maniac, than suffer her
to rest in peace beneath the shadow of His society, in this my own selected
and beloved recess?"--

All this appeared to me, I own, methodized madness. I imagined, that it was
my imperative duty to take her from scenes that thus forcibly reminded her
of her loss. Nor did I doubt, that in the tranquillity of our family circle
at Windsor, she would recover some degree of composure, and in the end, of
happiness. My affection for Clara also led me to oppose these fond dreams
of cherished grief; her sensibility had already been too much excited; her
infant heedlessness too soon exchanged for deep and anxious thought. The
strange and romantic scheme of her mother, might confirm and perpetuate the
painful view of life, which had intruded itself thus early on her
contemplation.

On returning home, the captain of the steam packet with whom I had agreed
to sail, came to tell me, that accidental circumstances hastened his
departure, and that, if I went with him, I must come on board at five on
the following morning. I hastily gave my consent to this arrangement, and
as hastily formed a plan through which Perdita should be forced to become
my companion. I believe that most people in my situation would have acted
in the same manner. Yet this consideration does not, or rather did not in
after time, diminish the reproaches of my conscience. At the moment, I felt
convinced that I was acting for the best, and that all I did was right and
even necessary.

I sat with Perdita and soothed her, by my seeming assent to her wild
scheme. She received my concurrence with pleasure, and a thousand times
over thanked her deceiving, deceitful brother. As night came on, her
spirits, enlivened by my unexpected concession, regained an almost
forgotten vivacity. I pretended to be alarmed by the feverish glow in her
cheek; I entreated her to take a composing draught; I poured out the
medicine, which she took docilely from me. I watched her as she drank it.
Falsehood and artifice are in themselves so hateful, that, though I still
thought I did right, a feeling of shame and guilt came painfully upon me. I
left her, and soon heard that she slept soundly under the influence of the
opiate I had administered. She was carried thus unconscious on board; the
anchor weighed, and the wind being favourable, we stood far out to sea;
with all the canvas spread, and the power of the engine to assist, we
scudded swiftly and steadily through the chafed element.

It was late in the day before Perdita awoke, and a longer time elapsed
before recovering from the torpor occasioned by the laudanum, she perceived
her change of situation. She started wildly from her couch, and flew to the
cabin window. The blue and troubled sea sped past the vessel, and was
spread shoreless around: the sky was covered by a rack, which in its swift
motion shewed how speedily she was borne away. The creaking of the masts,
the clang of the wheels, the tramp above, all persuaded her that she was
already far from the shores of Greece.--"Where are we?" she cried, "where
are we going?"--

The attendant whom I had stationed to watch her, replied, "to England."--


"And my brother?"--

"Is on deck, Madam."

"Unkind! unkind!" exclaimed the poor victim, as with a deep sigh she looked
on the waste of waters. Then without further remark, she threw herself on
her couch, and closing her eyes remained motionless; so that but for the
deep sighs that burst from her, it would have seemed that she slept.

As soon as I heard that she had spoken, I sent Clara to her, that the sight
of the lovely innocent might inspire gentle and affectionate thoughts. But
neither the presence of her child, nor a subsequent visit from me, could
rouse my sister. She looked on Clara with a countenance of woful meaning,
but she did not speak. When I appeared, she turned away, and in reply to my
enquiries, only said, "You know not what you have done!"--I trusted that
this sullenness betokened merely the struggle between disappointment and
natural affection, and that in a few days she would be reconciled to her
fate.

When night came on, she begged that Clara might sleep in a separate cabin.
Her servant, however, remained with her. About midnight she spoke to the
latter, saying that she had had a bad dream, and bade her go to her
daughter, and bring word whether she rested quietly. The woman obeyed.

The breeze, that had flagged since sunset, now rose again. I was on deck,
enjoying our swift progress. The quiet was disturbed only by the rush of
waters as they divided before the steady keel, the murmur of the moveless
and full sails, the wind whistling in the shrouds, and the regular motion
of the engine. The sea was gently agitated, now shewing a white crest, and
now resuming an uniform hue; the clouds had disappeared; and dark ether
clipt the broad ocean, in which the constellations vainly sought their
accustomed mirror. Our rate could not have been less than eight knots.

Suddenly I heard a splash in the sea. The sailors on watch rushed to the
side of the vessel, with the cry--some one gone overboard. "It is not
from deck," said the man at the helm, "something has been thrown from the
aft cabin." A call for the boat to be lowered was echoed from the deck. I
rushed into my sister's cabin; it was empty.

With sails abaft, the engine stopt, the vessel remained unwillingly
stationary, until, after an hour's search, my poor Perdita was brought on
board. But no care could re-animate her, no medicine cause her dear eyes to
open, and the blood to flow again from her pulseless heart. One clenched
hand contained a slip of paper, on which was written, "To Athens." To
ensure her removal thither, and prevent the irrecoverable loss of her body
in the wide sea, she had had the precaution to fasten a long shawl round
her waist, and again to the staunchions of the cabin window. She had
drifted somewhat under the keel of the vessel, and her being out of sight
occasioned the delay in finding her. And thus the ill-starred girl died a
victim to my senseless rashness. Thus, in early day, she left us for the
company of the dead, and preferred to share the rocky grave of Raymond,
before the animated scene this cheerful earth afforded, and the society of
loving friends. Thus in her twenty-ninth year she died; having enjoyed some
few years of the happiness of paradise, and sustaining a reverse to which
her impatient spirit and affectionate disposition were unable to submit. As
I marked the placid expression that had settled on her countenance in
death, I felt, in spite of the pangs of remorse, in spite of heart-rending
regret, that it was better to die so, than to drag on long, miserable years
of repining and inconsolable grief. Stress of weather drove us up the
Adriatic Gulph; and, our vessel being hardly fitted to weather a storm, we
took refuge in the port of Ancona. Here I met Georgio Palli, the
vice-admiral of the Greek fleet, a former friend and warm partizan of
Raymond. I committed the remains of my lost Perdita to his care, for the
purpose of having them transported to Hymettus, and placed in the cell her
Raymond already occupied beneath the pyramid. This was all accomplished
even as I wished. She reposed beside her beloved, and the tomb above was
inscribed with the united names of Raymond and Perdita.

I then came to a resolution of pursuing our journey to England overland. My
own heart was racked by regrets and remorse. The apprehension, that Raymond
had departed for ever, that his name, blended eternally with the past, must
be erased from every anticipation of the future, had come slowly upon me. I
had always admired his talents; his noble aspirations; his grand
conceptions of the glory and majesty of his ambition: his utter want of
mean passions; his fortitude and daring. In Greece I had learnt to love
him; his very waywardness, and self-abandonment to the impulses of
superstition, attached me to him doubly; it might be weakness, but it was
the antipodes of all that was grovelling and selfish. To these pangs were
added the loss of Perdita, lost through my own accursed self-will and
conceit. This dear one, my sole relation; whose progress I had marked from
tender childhood through the varied path of life, and seen her throughout
conspicuous for integrity, devotion, and true affection; for all that
constitutes the peculiar graces of the female character, and beheld her at
last the victim of too much loving, too constant an attachment to the
perishable and lost, she, in her pride of beauty and life, had thrown aside
the pleasant perception of the apparent world for the unreality of the
grave, and had left poor Clara quite an orphan. I concealed from this
beloved child that her mother's death was voluntary, and tried every means
to awaken cheerfulness in her sorrow-stricken spirit.

One of my first acts for the recovery even of my own composure, was to bid
farewell to the sea. Its hateful splash renewed again and again to my sense
the death of my sister; its roar was a dirge; in every dark hull that was
tossed on its inconstant bosom, I imaged a bier, that would convey to death
all who trusted to its treacherous smiles. Farewell to the sea! Come, my
Clara, sit beside me in this aerial bark; quickly and gently it cleaves the
azure serene, and with soft undulation glides upon the current of the air;
or, if storm shake its fragile mechanism, the green earth is below; we can
descend, and take shelter on the stable continent. Here aloft, the
companions of the swift-winged birds, we skim through the unresisting
element, fleetly and fearlessly. The light boat heaves not, nor is opposed
by death-bearing waves; the ether opens before the prow, and the shadow of
the globe that upholds it, shelters us from the noon-day sun. Beneath are
the plains of Italy, or the vast undulations of the wave-like Apennines:
fertility reposes in their many folds, and woods crown the summits. The
free and happy peasant, unshackled by the Austrian, bears the double
harvest to the garner; and the refined citizens rear without dread the long
blighted tree of knowledge in this garden of the world. We were lifted
above the Alpine peaks, and from their deep and brawling ravines entered
the plain of fair France, and after an airy journey of six days, we landed
at Dieppe, furled the feathered wings, and closed the silken globe of our
little pinnace. A heavy rain made this mode of travelling now incommodious;
so we embarked in a steam-packet, and after a short passage landed at
Portsmouth.

A strange story was rife here. A few days before, a tempest-struck vessel
had appeared off the town: the hull was parched-looking and cracked, the
sails rent, and bent in a careless, unseamanlike manner, the shrouds
tangled and broken. She drifted towards the harbour, and was stranded on
the sands at the entrance. In the morning the custom-house officers,
together with a crowd of idlers, visited her. One only of the crew appeared
to have arrived with her. He had got to shore, and had walked a few paces
towards the town, and then, vanquished by malady and approaching death, had
fallen on the inhospitable beach. He was found stiff, his hands clenched,
and pressed against his breast. His skin, nearly black, his matted hair and
bristly beard, were signs of a long protracted misery. It was whispered
that he had died of the plague. No one ventured on board the vessel, and
strange sights were averred to be seen at night, walking the deck, and
hanging on the masts and shrouds. She soon went to pieces; I was shewn
where she had been, and saw her disjoined timbers tossed on the waves. The
body of the man who had landed, had been buried deep in the sands; and none
could tell more, than that the vessel was American built, and that several
months before the Fortunatas had sailed from Philadelphia, of which no
tidings were afterwards received.

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