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Our course lay along the borders of the enchanting lake of Lowertz. The appearance of the slopes, on the eastern and southern sides, told us what the valley of Goldau was a few days since, smiling with varied vegetation, gay with villages and cottages, and bright with promises of autumnal plenty. The shores of this lake were covered with ruins of huts, with hay, with furniture and clothes, which the vast swell of its waters had lodged on the banks. As we were walking mournfully along towards Schweitz, we met with the dead body of a woman, which had been just found. It was stretched out on a board, and barely covered with a white cloth. Two men, preceded by a priest, were carrying it to a more decent burial.

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We hoped that this sight would have concluded the horrours of this day's scenery, and that we should soon escape from every painful vestige of the calamity of Schweitz. But we continued to find relicks of ruined buildings for a league along the whole extent of the lake; and a little beyond the two islands, mentioned above, we saw, lying on the shore, the stiff body of a peasant, which had been washed up by the waves, and which two men were examining, to ascertain where he belonged. Our guide instantly knew it to be one of the inhabitants of Goldau. But I will mention no more particulars. Some perhaps that have been related to me are not credible, and others which are credible are too painful.

The immediate cause of this calamitous event is not yet sufficiently ascertained and probably never will be. The fall of parts of hills is not uncommon; and in Switzerland especially there are several instances recorded of the descent of large masses of earth and stones. But so sudden and extensive a ruin, as this, was, perhaps, never produced by the fall of a mountain. It can be compared only to the destruction made by the tremendous eruptions of Etna and Vesuvius.

Many persons suppose that the long and copious rains, which they have lately had in this part of Switzerland, may have swelled the mountains, in the Rossberg, sufficiently to push this part of the mountain off its inclined base. But we saw no marks of streams issuing from any part of the bed which is laid bare. Perhaps the consistency of the earth in the interiour of the mountain was so much altered by the moisture which penetrated into it, that the projection of the Spitzberg was no longer held by a sufficiently strong cohesion, and its own weight carried it over. Perhaps, as the

earth is calcareous, a kind of fermentation took place sufficient to loosen its foundations. But there is no end to conjectures. The mountain has fallen, and the villages are no

more.

LESSON CLVII.

Lament of a Swiss Minstrel over the ruins of Goldau.-NEAL..

O SWITZERLAND! my country! 'tis to thee
I strike my harp in agony :-
My country! nurse of Liberty,
Home of the gallant, great, and free,
My sullen harp I strike to thee.)
O! I have lost you all!
Parents, and home, and friends:

Ye sleep beneath a mountain pall;
A mountain's plumage o'er you
bends.
The cliff-yew, of funereal gloom,
Is now the only mourning plume
That nods above a people's tomb.
Of the echoes that swim o'er thy bright blue lake,
And, deep in its caverns, their merry bells shake;
And repeat the young huntsman's cry ;-
That clatter and laugh when the goatherds take
Their browzing flocks, at the morning's break,
Far over the hills,-not one is awake
In the swell of thy peaceable sky.

(They sit on that wave with a motionless wing,
And their cymbals are mute; and the desert birds sing
Their unanswered notes to the wave and the sky,
As they stoop their broad wing and go sluggishly by:
For deep, in that blue bosomed water, is laid
As innocent, true, and as lovely a maid

As ever in cheerfulness carolled her song,

In the blithe mountain air, as she bounded along.
The heavens are all blue, and the billows' bright verge
Is frothily laved by a whispering surge,

That heaves, incessant, a tranquil dirge,

To lull the pale forms that sleep below :-
Forms that rock as the waters flow..

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(That bright lake is still as a liquid sky:
And when o'er its bosom the swift clouds fly,
They pass like thoughts o'er a clear, blue eye.
The fringe of thin foam that their sepulchre binds
Is as light as the clouds that are borne by the winds.
Soft over its bosom the dim vapours hover

In morning's first light and the snowy winged plover,
That skims o'er the deep

Where my loved ones sleep,

No note of joy on this solitude flings;

Nor shakes the mist from his drooping wings.

*

*

*

*

No chariots of fire on the clouds careered ;
No warriour's arm on the hills was reared;
No death-angel's trump o'er the ocean was blown ;
No mantle of wrath over heaven was thrown;
No armies of light with their banners of flame,
On neighing steeds, through the sunset came,
Or leaping from space appeared:

No earthquake reeled: no Thunderer stormed:
No fetterless dead o'er the bright sky swarmed:
No voices in heaven were heard.

But, the hour when the sun in his pride went down,

While his parting hung rich o'er the world,
While abroad o'er the sky his flush mantle was blown,
And his streamers of gold were unfurled;

An everlasting hill was torn
From its primeval base, and borne,
In gold and crimson vapours drest,
To where a people are at rest.
lowly it came in its mountain wrath;
And the forests vanished before its path;
And the rude cliffs bowed; and the waters fled;
And the living were buried, while over their head
They heard the full march of their foe as he sped;-
And the valley of life was the tomb of the dead.
The mountain sepulchre of all I loved!

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The village sank, and the giant trees

Leaned back from the encountering breeze,
As this tremendous pageant moved.
The mountain forsook his perpetual throne,

And came down in his pomp: and his path is shown

In barreness and ruin :-there

His ancient mysteries lie bare;

His rocks in nakedness arise;
His desolations mock the skies.

Sweet vale, Goldau, farewell!
An Alpine monument may dwell
Upon thy bosom, O my home!

The mountain-thy pall and thy prison-may keep thee;
I shall see thee no more, but till death I will weep thee;
Of thy blue dwelling dream wherever I roam,
And wish myself wrapped in its peaceful foam.

LESSON CLVIII.

Lycidas.-MILTON.

[In this monody, the author bewails a learned friend, who, on his passage from Chester to Ireland, was drowned in the Irish seas, 1637.]

YET Once more, O ye laurels, and once more
Ye myrtles brown, with ivy never-sere,
I come to pluck your berries harsh and crude:
And, with forced fingers rude,
Shatter your leaves before the mellowing year.
Bitter constraint and sad occasion dear,
Compels me to disturb your season due :
For Lycidas is dead,-dead ere his prime ;-
Young Lycidas,—and hath not left his peer:
Who would not sing for Lycidas? he knew
Himself to sing, and build the lofty rhyme.
He must not float upon his watery bier
Unwept, and welter to the parching wind,.
Without the meed of some melodious tear.
Begin then, Sisters of the sacred well,
That from beneath the seat of Jove doth spring;
Begin, and somewhat loudly sweep the string:
Hence with denial vain, and coy excuse :
So may some gentle Muse

With lucky words favour my destined urn;
And, as he passes, turn,

And bid fair peace be to my sable shroud.

For we were nursed upon the self-same hill, Fed the same flock, by fountain, shade, and rill. Together both, ere the high lawns appeared

Under the opening eye-lids of the Morn,
We drove afield, and both together heard
What time the gray-fly winds her sultry horn,
Battening our Rocks with the fresh dews of night,
Oft till the star, that rose, at evening bright,
Toward heaven's descent had sloped his westering wheel.
Meanwhile the rural ditties were not mute,
Tempered to the oaten flute;

Rough Satyrs danced, and Fauns with cloven heel
From the glad sound would not be absent long;
And old Damætas loyed to hear our song.

But, O the heavy change! now thou art gone!
Now thou art gone, and never must return!
Thee, shepherd, thee the woods, and desert caves
With wild thyme and the gadding vine o'ergrown,
And all their echoes mourn :

The willows, and the hazel copses green,
Shall now no more be seen

Fanning their joyous leaves to thy soft lays.
As killing as the canker to the rose,

Or taint-worm to the weanling herds that graze,
Or frost to flowers, that their gay wardrobe wear,
When first the white-thorn blows;

Such Lycidas, thy loss to shepherds' ear.

Where were ye, Nymphs, when the remorseless deep
Closed o'er the head of your loved Lycidas?
For neither were ye playing on the steep,
Where your old bards, the famous Druids, lie,
Nor on the shaggy top of Mona high,

Nor yet where Deva spreads her wizard stream:
Ay me! I fondly dream!

Had ye been there for what could that have done?
What could the Muse herself that Orpheus bore,
The Muse herself, for her enchanting son,
Whom universal nature did lament,

When, by the rout that made the hideous roar,
His gory visage down the stream was sent,
Down the swift Hebrus to the Lesbian shore?
Alas! what boots it with incessant care
To tend the homely, slighted, shepherd's trade,
And strictly meditate the thankless Muse?
Were it not better done, as others use,
To sport with Amaryllis in the shade,
Or with the tangles of Neæra's hair?

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