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exploits of his ancestors were doubtless re- after the ballads had been altogether forgotten, counted and exaggerated. If there were then consulted the chronicle. He was struck by thextant songs which gave a vivid and touching lively colouring of these ancient fictions; he description of an event, the saddest and the transferred them to his pages; and thus we most glorious in the long history of the Fabian find inserted, as unquestionable facts, in a nar. house, nothing could be more natural than that rative which is likely to last as long as the the panegyrist should borrow from such songs English tongue, the inventions of some min. their finest touches, in order to adorn his strel whose works were probably never comspeech. A few generations later the songs mitted to writing, whose name is buried in would perhaps be forgotten, or remembered oblivion, and whose dialect has become obsoonly by shepherds and vine-dressers. But the lete. It must then be admitted to be possible, speech would certainly be preserved in the or rather highly probable, that the stories of archives of the Fabian nobles. Fabius Pictor Romulus and Remus, and of the Horatii and would be well acquainted with a document so Curiatii, may have had a similar origin. interesting to his personal feelings, and would Castilian literature will furnish us with aninsert large extracts from it in his rude chro- other parallel case. Mariana, the classical nicle. That chronicle, as we know, was the historian of Spain, tells the story of the ill-staroldest to which Livy had access. Livy would red marriage which the King Don Alonso at a glance distinguish the bold strokes of the brought about between the heirs of Carrion forgotten poet from the dull and feeble narra- and the two daughters of the Cid. The Cid tive by which they were surrounded, would | bestowed a princely dower on his sons-in-law. retouch them with a delicate and powerful | But the young men were base and proud, cow. pencil, and would make them immortal. ardly and cruel. They were tried in danger,
That this might happen at Rome can scarcely and found wanting. They fled before the be doubted; for something very like this has Moors, and once, when a lion broke out of his happened in several countries, and, among den, they ran and couched in an unseemly others, in our own. Perhaps the theory of hiding-place. They knew that they were de. Perizonius cannot be better illustrated than by spised, and took counsel how they might be showing that what he supposes to have taken avenged. They parted from their father-in-law place in ancient times has, beyond all doubt, with many signs of love, and set forth on a taken place in modern times.
journey with Dona Elvira and Doña Sol. In “History," says Hume, with the utmost gra- a solitary place the bridegrooms seized their vity, “has preserved some instances of Edgar's brides, stripped them, scourged them, and deamours, from which, as from a specimen, we parted, leaving them for dead. But one of the may form a conjecture of the rest." He then house of Bivar, suspecting foul play, had lol tells very agreeably the stories of Elfeda and lowed them in disguise. The ladies were Elfrila; two stories which have a most sus- brought back safe to the house of their father. picious air of romance, and which, indeed, Complaint was made to the king. It was ad. greatly resemble, in their general character, judged by the Cories that the dower given by some of the legends of early Rome. He cites, the Cid should be returned, and that the heirs as his authority for these two tales, the chro- of Carrion together with one of their kindred nicle of William of Malmesbury, who lived in should do battle against three knights of the the time of King Stephen. The great majority | party of the Cid. The guilty youths would of readers suppose that the device by which have declined the combat; but all their shifts Elfeda was substituted for her young mistress, were vain. They were vanquished in the lists, the artifice by which Athelwold obtained the and forever disgraced, while their injured hand of Elfrida, the detection of that artifice, wives were sought in marriage by great the hunting party, and the vengeance of the princes.* amorous king, are things about which there is Some Spanish writers have laboured to no more doubt than about the execution of show, by an examination of dates and circumAnne Boleyn, or the slitting of Sir John Co-stances, that this story is untrue. Such conventry's nose. But, when we turn to William futation was surely not needed; for the narra. of Malmesbury, we find that Hume, in his tive is on the face of it a romance. How it eagerness to relate these pleasant fables, has found its way into Mariana's history is quite overlooked one very important circumstance. clear. He acknowledges his obligations to the William does indeed tell both the stories; but | old chronicles, and had doubtless before him he gives us distinct notice that he does not the “Cronica del famoso Cavallero Cid Ruy warrant their truin, and that they rest on no Diez Campeador," which had been printed as better authority than that of ballads.*
early as the year 1552. He little suspected Such is the way in which these two well- | that all the most striking passages in this known tales have been handed down. They chronicle were copied from a poem of the originally appeared in a poetical form. They twelfth century, a poem of which the language found their way from ballads into an old chroni. and versification had long been obsolete, but cle. The ballads perished; the chronicle re- which glowed with no common portion of the mained. A great historian, some centuries fire of the Iliad. Yet such was the fact
More than a century and a half after the death *"Infamias quas post dicam magis resperserunt can- of Mariana, this grand old ballad, of which one llena." Edgar appears to have been most mercilessly treated in the Anglo-Saxon ballads. Ile was the fa. vourite of the monks; and the monks and minstrels were at deadly feud.
* Mariana, lib. x. cap. 4
There can be little doubt that among those two old Roman lays about the defence of the parts of early Roman history which had a po- bridge; and that, while the story which Livy etical origin was the legend of Horatius Cocles. has transmitted to us was preferred by the We have several versions of the story, and multitude, the other, which ascribed the whole these versions differ from each other in points glory to Horatius alone, may have been the of no small importance. Polybius, there is favourite with the Horatian house. reason to believe, heard the tale recited over The following ballad is supposed to have the remains of some Consul or Prætor descend- been made about a hundred and twenty years ed from the old Horatian patricians; for he after the war which it celebrates, and just be evidently introduces it as a specimen of the fore the taking of Rome by the Gauls. The narratives with which the Romans were in the author seems to have been an honest citizen, habit of embellishing their funeral oratory. It proud of the military glory of his country, sick is remarkable that, according to his descrip- of the disputes of factions, and much given to tion, Horatius defended the bridge alone, and pining after good old times which had never perished in the waters. According to the really existed. The allusion, however, to the chronicles which Livy and Dionysius fol- partial manner in which the public lands were lowed, Horatius had two companions, swam allotted could proceed only from a plebeian ; safe to shore, and was loaded with honours and the allusion to the fraudulent sale of spoils and rewards.
marks the date of the poem, and shows that These discrepancies are easily explained. the poet shared in the general discontent with Our own literature, indeed, will furnish an which the proceedings of Camillus, after the exact parallel to what may have taken place taking of Veii, were regarded. at Rome. It is highly probable that the me The penultimate syllable of the name Porsemory of the war of Porsena was preserved by na has been shortened in spite of the authority compositions much reseml·ling the two ballads of Niebuhr, who pronounces, without assignwhich stanå first in the Reliques of Ancient Eng. ing any ground for his opinion, that Martial lish Poetry. In both those ballads the English, was guilty of a decided blunder in the line, commanded by the Percy fight with the Scots,
"Hanc spectare manum Porsena non potuit." commanded by the Douglas. In one of the ballads, the Douglas is killed by a nameless
It is not easy to understand how any modern English archer, and the Percy by a Scottish scholar, whatever his attainments may be, spearman: in the other, the Percy slays the and those of Niebuhr were undoubtedly im. Douglas in single combat, and is himself made mense, --can venture to pronounce that Mar. prisoner. In the former, Sir Hugh Montgomery tial did not know the quantity of a word which is shot through the heart by a Northumbrian he must have uttered and heard uttered a bowman: in the latter, he is taken, and ex. hundred times before he left school. Niebuhr changed for the Percy. Yet both the ballads seems also to have forgotten that Martial has relate to the samc. event, and that an event
fellow culprits to keep him in countenance. which probably took place within the memory Horace has committed the same decided blunof persons who were alive when both the bal. der; for he gives us, as a pure iambic line, lads were made. One of the minstrels says: "Minacis aut Etrusca Porsenæ manus." “Old men that knowen the grownde well yenoughe
Silius Italicus has repeatedly offended in the Call it the battell of Otterburn:
same way, as when he says, At Otterburn began this spurne Upon a monnyn day.
"Cernitur effugiens ardentem Porsena dextram;" Ther was the dougghte Doglas slean:
and again, The Perse never went away."
"Clúsinum vulgus, cum, Porsena magne, jubebas." The other poet sums up the event in the fol- A modern writer may be content to err in such owing lines:
Niebuhr's supposition that each of the three
of one of the three patrician tribes is both in
genious and probable, and has been adopted It is by no means unlikely han: there were in the following poem.
A LAY VADE ABOUT THE YEAR OF THE CITY CCCLX.
By the Nine Gods he swore
Should suffer wrong no more.
And named a trysting day,
Have heard the trumpet's blast. Shaine on the false Etruscan
Who lingers in his home, When Porsena of Clusium Is on the march for Rome.
Are pouring in amain
From many a fruitful plain;
Which, hid by beech and pine, Like an eagle's nest hangs on the crest of purple Apennine;
4. From lordly Volaterræ,
Where scowls the far-famed hold Piled by the hands of giants
For god-like kings of old; From seagirt Populonia,
Whose sentinels descry Sardinia's snowy mountain-tops Fringing the southern sky;
5. From the proud mart of Pisæ,
Queen of the western waves, Where ride Massilia's triremes
Heavy with fair-haired slaves; From where sweet Clanis wanders
Through corn, and vines, and flowers; From where Cortona lifts to heaven Her diadem of towers.
Drop in dark Auser's rill;
of the Ciminian hill; Beyond all streams Clitumnus
Is to the herdsman dear;
The great Volsinian mere.
No hunter tracks the stag's green path
Up the Ciminian hill;
Grazes the milk-white steer;
This year old men shall reap; This year young boys in Umbro
Shall plunge the struggling sheep; And in the vats of Luna,
This year, the must shall foam Round the white feet of laughing girls Whose sires have marched to Rome.
9. There be thirty chosen prophets,
The wisest of the land, Who alway by Lars Porsena
Both morn and evening stand: Evening and morn the Thirty
Have turned the verses o'er, Traced from the right on linen white By mighty seers of yore.
10. And with one voice the Thirty
Have their glad answer given: “Go forth, go forth, Lars Porsena,
Go forth, beloved of Heaven;
To Clasium's royal dome,
11. And now hath every city
Sent up her tale of men:
The horse are thousands ten.
Is met the great array,
Were ranged beneath his eye, And many a banished Roman,
And many a stout ally; And with a mighty following
To join the muster came The Tusculan Mamilius,
Prince of the Latian name.
But by the yellow Tiber
Was tumult and affright: From all the spacious champaign
To Rome men took their flight A mile around the city, The throng stopped up the ways;
But now no stroke of woodman
Is heard by Auser's rill,
A fearful sight it was to see
And women great with child, And mothers sobbing over babes
That clung to them and smiled, And sick men borne in litters
High on the necks of slaves, And troops of sun-burned husbandmen
With reaping-hooks and staves,
And droves of mules and asses
Laden with skins of wine, And endless flocks of goats and sheep,
And endless herds of kine, And endless trains of wagons
That creaked beneath their weight Of corn-sacks and of household goods, Choked every roaring gate.
16. Now, from the rock Tarpeian,
Could the wan burghers spy The line of blazing villages
Red in the midnight sky.
They sat all night and day,
Have spread the Tuscan bands; Nor house, nor fence, nor dovecote,
In Crustumerium stands. Verbenna down to Ostia
Hath wasted all the plain; Astur hath stormed Janiculum, And the stout guards are slain.
There was no heart so bold,
When that ill news was told.
Up rose the Fathers all;
Before the River-gate ;
For musing or debate.
«The bridge must straight go down; For, since Janiculum is lost, Naught else can gave the town."
20. Just then a scout came flying,
All wild with haste and rear:
Lars Porsena is here."
The Consul fixed his eye,
Bise fast along the sky,
Doth the red whirlwind come;
The trampling and the hum.
Now through the gloom appears,
Above that glimmering line, Now might ye see the banners
of twelve fair cities shine; But the banner of proud Clusium
Was highest of them all, "The terror of the Umbrian, The terror of the Gaul.
Now might the burghers know,
Each warlike Lucumo.
On his fleet roan was seen ; And Astur of the fourfold shield, Girt with the brand none else may wiell, Tolumnius with the belt of gold, And dark Verbenna from the hold By reedy Thrasymene.
21. Fast by the royal standard,
O'erlooking all the war,
Sate in his ivory car.
Prince of the Latian nane;
That wrought the deed of shame.
25. But when the face of Sextus
Was seen among the foes,
From all the town arose.
But spate towards him and hissed; No child but screamed out curses, And shook its little fist.
26. But the Consul's brow was sad,
And the Consul's speech was low, And darkly looked he at the wall,
And darkly at the foe. « Their van will be upon us
Before the bridge goes down; And if they once may win the bridge. What hope to save the town ?"
27. Then out spake brave Horatius,
The Captain of the gate :