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ROMANCE AND REALITY.
“ Her silent face is saintly pale,
And sadness shades it like a veil ;
66 But the delicate chain
COURTESY and curiosity are very often at variance. With a hurried apology, Lorraine had been shewn into a large, gloomy-looking apartment, where he was left to his own thoughts and a small lamp. The moon, now at its full, shone directly into the room, shedding'a sad and softened light, which somewhat concealed the ravages of time, or what seemed
the work of that even worse spoiler — man. The floor had been paved with alternate squares of different-coloured marbles : it had been dilapidated in many places, and the vacancies filled with common stone. The panels of the wall were of various and beautiful woods inlaid in fanciful patterns, while the cornices and divisions were of marble carved exquisitely, and the ceiling had been painted to resemble a summer sky.
There was now scarcely a space uninjured : the cornices were broken away; the panels had initial letters and uncouth faces rudely cut upon them; and on one side there was a number of small round holes, such as would be produced by a shower of shot, and a few larger ones that indicated bullets. The roof was smoked and scorched; and two pictures hung at one end, or rather their frames — for a black and smouldered canvass shewed that fire had destroyed the work of the painter.
Still, there were signs of human habitation, and some of female ingenuity. At the upper window, a fine old vine had been carefully trained both inside and out, till it served the purpose of a curtain.
Near it was a highbacked chair, covered with embroidered silk,
a case, which
whose rich bright colours shewed it had but lately left the skilful hand of its worker. The floor beneath was spread with matting of the fragrant grass of the country: beside stood a small table of inlaid wood, and a cushion was at the feet, also worked with embroidered flowers. Against the wall were hung two or three crayon drawings: the moonlight shewed the upper one to be a Madonna and child-the others were hidden by the shadow of the vineleaves, which fell directly upon them. A crucifix, made of black oak -- a few shelves, which seemed crowded with books. appeared, from its shape, to contain a lute or guitar—and two or three small chairs, of the same dark wood, stood near; but the rest of the room was utterly unfurnished.
The destruction wrought by time never oppresses the spirits as does that wrought by man. The fallen temple—the mouldering tower, gray with moss, and stained with rain,-seem but to have submitted to the inevitable doom of all; and the ruin time has made, time also hallows. But the devastated home and perished household-man's sorrow following fast upon man's guilt-tells too near a tale of suffering, The destruction in the one case is gradual