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was light, terrible light, though the sky was as dark as December midnight. They attempted to ascend Cork-hill; that was rendered impassable by the crowd; and winding another way through lanes, of which the reader may be spared the names, they got into Fishamble Street. Many fearful intimations of the danger struck them there.—The hollow rolling of the fire-engines, so distinct in their sound; the cries of "clear the way!" from the crowd, who opened their dense tumultuous mass for the passage, and instantly closed again; the trampling of the cavalry on the wet pavement, threatening, backing, facing among the crowd; the terrible hollow knocking on the pavement, to break open the pipes for water, which was but imperfectly supplied; the bells of all the neighbouring churches, St. John's, St. Werburgh's, St. Bride's, and the deep tremendous toll of Christ Church, mingled with, but heard above all, as if it summoned the sufferers to prepare, not for life but for death, and poured a kind of defiance on the very efforts it was rung to invite them to. All this came at once on them as they entered Fishamble Street, from a wretched lane, through which they had been feeling their way. They emerged from it; and when they did, the horrors of the conflagration burst on them at once. The fire, confined within the sphere of its action, amidst warehouses thickly enclosed, burst in terrible volumes above the tops of the houses, and seemed like a volcano, of which no one could see the crater.
On the steps of St. John's church, a number were collected. They had snatched the furniture from their miserable lodgings; piled it up in the street, where the guard were watching it, and now sat patiently in the open air to see their habitations reduced to ashes, unknowing where they were to rest their heads that night.
All the buildings in the neighbourhood were strongly illuminated by the fire, and still more strongly (though partially from time time) by lights held out by the inhabitants from their windows, from the shops to the attics, six stories high; and the groups below flashing out in the light, and disappearing in the darkness, their upturned faces, marked with the shifting traces of fear, horror, defiance, and despair, presented a subject for Salvator. No banditti in the darkest woods of the Apennines, illuminated only by lightning, ever showed more fearful wildness of expression, or picturesque distortion of attitude. Just then the flame sunk for a moment, but, rising again, instantly poured forth a volume of light, that set the whole horizon in a blaze. There was a shriek from the crowd, that seemed rather like the cry of triumph than despair. It is certain that a people like the Irish, whose imagination is stronger than any other of their intellectual faculties, can utter cries of delight at the sight of a splendid conflagration that is consuming their dwellings.
The last burst of flames produced a singular effect. The buildings in Castle Street (below the range of the illumination) lay in complete darkness—darkness more intense from the surrounding light, and the tower and spire of St. Werburgh's, (it had then a fantastically elegant spire), by their height in the horizon, caught the whole effect of the fire, and appeared like a fairy palace of flame, blazing and built among the clouds.
SCENES IN THE APENNINES.
At length the travellers began to ascend among the Apennines. The immense pine forests which, at that period, overhung these mountains, and between which the road wound, excluded all view but of the cliffs aspiring above, except that, now and then, an opening through the dark woods allowed the eye a momentary glimpse of the country below. The gloom of these shades, their solitary silence, except when the breeze swept over their summits, the tremendous precipices of the mountains that came partially to the eye, each assisted to raise the solemnity of Emily's feelings into awe; she saw only images of gloomy grandeur, or of dreadful sublimity, around her; other images, equally gloomy and equally terrible, gleamed on her imagination. She was going she scarcely knew whither, under the dominion of a person from whose arbitrary disposition she had already suffered so much, to marry, perhaps, a man who possessed neither her affection nor esteem; or to endure, beyond the hope of succour, whatever punishment revenge, and that Italian revenge, might dictate.—The more she considered what might be the motive of the jour
ney, the more she became convinced that it was for the purpose of concluding her nuptials with Count Morano, with the secrecy which her resolute resistance had made necessary to the honour, if not to the safety of Montoni. From the deep solitudes into which she was immerging, and from the gloomy castle, of which she had heard some mysterious hints, her sick heart recoiled in despair, and she experienced, that, though her mind was already occupied by peculiar distress, it was still alive to the influence of new and local circumstances; why else did she shudder at the image of this desolate castle?
As the travellers still ascended among the pine forests, steep rose over steep, the mountains seemed to multiply as they went, and what was the summit of one eminence proved to be only the base of another. At length they reached a little plain, where the drivers stopped to rest the mules, whence a scene of such extent and magnificence opened below, as drew even from Madame Montoni a note of admiration. Emily lost, for a moment, her sorrows in the immensity of nature. Beyond the amphitheatre of mountains that stretched below, whose tops appeared as numerous almost as the waves of the sea, and whose feet were concealed by the forests—extended the campagna of Italy, where cities, and rivers, and woods, and all the glow of cultivation, were mingled in gay confusion. The Adriatic bounded the horizon, into which the Po and the Brenta, after winding through the whole extent of the landscape, poured their fruitful waves. Emily gazed long on the splendours of the world she was quitting, of which the whole magnificence seemed thus given to her sight only to increase her regret on leaving it; for her, Valancourt alone was in that world; to him alone her heart turned, and for him alone fell her bitter tears.
From this sublime scene the travellers continued to ascend among the pines, till they entered a narrow pass of the mountains, which shut out every feature of the distant country, and in its stead exhibited only tremendous crags, impending over the road, where no vestige of humanity, or even of vegetation, appeared, except here and there the trunk and scathed branches of an oak, that hung nearly headlong from the rock, into which its strong roots had fastened. This pass, which led into the heart of the Apennine, at length opened to day, and a scene of mountains stretched in long perspective, as wild as any the travellers had yet passed. Still vast pine forests hung upon their base, and crowned the ridgy precipice that rose perpendicularly from the vale, while, above, the rolling mists caught the sunbeams, and touched their cliffs with all the magical colouring of light and shade. The scene seemed perpetually changing, and its features to assume new forms, as the winding road brought them to the eye in different attitudes; while the shifting vapours, now partially concealing their minuter beauties, and now illuminating them with splendid tints, assisted the illusions of the sight.
Though the deep valleys between these mountains were, for the most part, clothed with pines, sometimes an abrupt opening presented a perspective of only barren rocks, with a cataract