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not see this old woman -eh ?-that is not it-take two stirrup-cups I mean-no! he did not take two stirrup-cups, thank God !” Still onwards they went-still the coudition of the master became worse, and the labor of the horse greater-a cold stupor and numbness gradually seized upon Hans's faculties, from which he was only at intervals aroused by the most acute and distressing pains in his forehead.
“ We should be near home, now, I think,” said he, patting his horse's neck, just after he had been awakened to some sense of his situation by a sudden twinge—“ we should be near home now," and the next moment his horse's fore feet dashed through some ice into water, and the animal made a sudden pause.
Hans was again aroused--the situation of the country, as far as the falling snow would allow him to judge of it, seemed to indicate that they were upon the banks of a river, which, although covered with snow, was not sufficiently frozen to permit the horse to cross. That they had wandered from the right road was certain, for there was no river within many miles of Hans's residence; but how to regain the lost track was more than enough to baffle the wit of the half frozen rider. He turned his horse back-in vain he endeavoured to discover some known object, some house or tree, but all was strange and obscure. “ Well," said Hans, we must go back again then ; we must retrace the road we have come.” This, however, was no easy task; the continual fall of snow quickly filled up all traces of the horse's feet, or the sudden gusts of wind at once effaced them, and Hans soon found by the unevenness of the ground, that even that hope was lost. Thus baffled, he first guided his horse one way, and then another, until the tired animal seemed to partake of the torpidity of his master, and often refused to answer to the rein. Hans, irritated and alarmed, spurred on the poor beast, who then again flew forward to the evident danger both of himself and his rider; but after some time, and great exertion, they again reached an even road, which Hans imagined to be that along which they had come.
For some time, they went quietly forwards, and Hans again sunk into a stupor, froin which, when he was aroused by acute pain, he found his steed had paused at the entrance of a wood to which the road had conducted him. Hans, stupidly angry, began to vent his wrath upon the wretched steed, who no sooner felt the spur, than he rushed forward into the forest. In vain did Hans then endeavour to turn his course--his numbed arms had not strength to restrain the fury which he had himself roused-away the horse dashed with the fury of a cataract, and the beating of the branches of the trees which he had encountered in his course, added continually to his rage.
They had scarcely proceeded a yard, when a bough struck off Hans' hat, and at that moment the recollection flashed across his mind, that the old woman had told him the time would come, when it would please him to have a houd to cover his aching brow. He shuddered to think how exactly the words were fulfilled.
The stupor now gave way, before the blows which he received from the branches, and the dreadful sense of his situation. “Would to God, I had left my money behind me!” he exclaimed, recollecting that he had with him a heavy bag, the produce of some cattle which he had sold. The words had scarcely passed from his lips when a voice, as if at his side, answered in a sneering tone, “ You have ever been fond of thy purse—'twere pity you should part now.”—The voice came upon Hans' ears as that of the old Hoodekin; and his alarmhis terror-his agitation-were increased ten-fold. In vain Hans strove to check his horse's career-in vain he looked, or rather endeavoured to look, around him to mark from whence the voice came; the thick branches struck him so perpetually, that he was obliged to bend down, even to the horse's neck, in order to preserve his seat. Forward, forward, still he went, with an impetuosity no strength could govern, no hand could restrain ; and every moment his situation became more deplorable. The stupor had indeed passed away; but notwithstanding all his exertions, a chill-an icy, death-like coldness, pervaded his veins, and was even more insupportable than the still continued pains across his brow. At one time he endeavoured to soothe his horse into quietness, and at another uttered some ejaculatory prayer, but both were answered with a laugh of derision, which terrified him not less than the recollection of his mis-spent, nay, his abused life, all which came rushing into his mind. Hour after hour passed away, but still the horse proceeded; on, on, he went, and Hans began to hope that a short time would hurry him to the conclusion of his misery, either by death, or by their passing through the forest; but all was vain. The spell-bound horse travelled still onwards, keeping near to the outside of the forest, until he came to the place from whence he first plunged into its depths, and then crossing the road again, he again pursued the same circle. In a short time all the horrors of exhaustion, and a dreadful thirst, succeeded, but there was no help-no consolation --no redress. If he spoke, a mocking voice answered with a sneer, or presented an empty stirrupcup to his parched lips; his groans, his agonies, were the subject of derision and contempt; every thing within and around him was torture. But why need we pursue this horrible tale? The malediction of the Hoodekin was fulfilled, even to the very letter. Keeping in the circle which he at first traversed, the horse still proceeded, until the poor rider, ever exposed to the cutting strokes of the branches, thus fell to the earth piece by piece; nay, it is even asserted that peasants resident in the neighbourhood have, until lately, seen the skeleton horse and rider, still pursuing their charmed course---still agonized--still tormented. Part of the wealth of Hans Kirkenbeck is said to have been at one time found by a wood-cutter, who wisely brought the same unto the chapel of St. Thomas, by the priests of which, it was exorcised and appropriated to holy uses.
If 'tis to prove this heart sincere,
And worthy of thy virgin love,
Ere it be register'd above ;
If thou 'midst worldly pleasures roam,
By all, I'd bave thee priz’d--and blest,
Within this fond, confiding breast;
A glitt'ring world before thee lies,
Perhaps 'twill please thee for awhile,
Which flatt'ry yeilds, to gain thy smile;
They call me fickle,---thou hast heard
My meeting vow,---my parting oath,
That might absolve me, love, from both;
To happier moments past with thee,
And ask thy tender heart, of me---
They say, in boyhood's giddy hour,
I fancied love enslaved my mind,
That ehang'd, and veer'd, with every wind,
Farewell awhile,---perhaps e'en thou
May'st sigh, to find this moment near,
Offer one kind relenting tear;
21st of December, 1826.
THE FUNERAL CEREMONIES OF THE CHINESE AND
Ar a moment when the public attention is particularly directed to « the poinps
and vanities" with which mankind delight to accompany the committal of the soul's forsaken tenement to its kindred earth, it may not be inappropriate to inquire how far the folly of other nations, in this respect, corresponds with our own. It has been
my fortune to witness the funeral ceremonies of two of the most singular people on the earth-two nations the most dissimilar to ourselves kingdoms, either of which, in point of manners, customs, and religion, may be considered our Antipodes-I mean the Chinese and the Turks. The burials of these two nations not only differ widely from our own, but in many respects from each other, and both have many curious peculiarities highly descriptive of the manners and customs of the people to whom they refer.
During a residence at Canton, I was witness to many funerals; but my attention was more particularly drawn to one, that of an excellent and upright man of considerable wealth and importance, with whom I had many dealings. He had died before my third arrival at Canton, but it is the custom to delay the funeral for a long time, and his body was still unburied. I understood there had been a sort of lying in state, something similar, I presume, to what is still practised in Scotland, where the corpse is dressed out in white, and the female friends of the deceased are admitted to view it. I have been informed, that it is the Chinese custom, upon such occasions, to prostrate themselves before the corpse, which is placed in the coffin, surrounded with flowers and perfumes, but I was never present at any such ceremony. The foreman, or chief servant of my deceased friend, informed me, upon my arrival, that I might be admitted to view the coffin, which was closed, but still uninterred, and as I was desirous of doing so, he appointed to meet me at a certain hour, and we proceeded to the house of the deceased. The room into which I was introduced, was one of considerable dimensions, entirely hung round with white, which is the Chinese color for mourning. In the centre of the apartment was a kind of long table, covered with white, upon which was placed the coffin, also covered with a kind of pall, all white. My companion, after prostrating himself upon the floor, approached the coffin, and withdrew the pall from a part of it, in order that I might observe its neatness of workmanship, and the paintings and gilding with which it was covered. He informed me, ihat his late master had caused it to be made during his life-time, which is, indeed, the practice of even the poorest Chinese. All contrive to spare a sufficient sum to secure a reputable shelter for their lifeless bodies. In the room were several pedestals, all covered with white, and upon them incense and lights were kept burning. The coffin was placed against the wall, and just above it, a scroll was fastened to the white hangings, upon which were emblazoned the
name and degree of the deceased. The whole appearance was extremely striking, and affected me very powerfully.
After I had been at Canton about a month, the funeral took place. It is the custom of the Chinese to keep dead bodies above ground for a very long time; the rich people delay the funeral even for a year or longer, and are thereby esteemed to afford proof of their respect and reverence for the deceased. My friend was kept nearly two months. Upon the day fixed for the funeral, a great number of the relatives and acquaintances of the deceased assembled at his residence, and were all marshalled in procession as at our English burials. A number of hired musicians, performing slow and melancholy tunes upon a variety of instruments, preceded the corpse, as did also some persons bearing painted scrolls and silken banners, on which were inscriptions indicative of the rank and character of the deceased. Incense bearers followed these, and then, under a white canopy, the coffin covered with a white pall was borne by men. Upon each side of it were persons employed in burning pieces of paper and pasteboard with inscriptions upon them; some circular, and some cut into curious fantastic figures, all which, it is believed, are wafted upwards with the soul, and accompany it in its next state of existence either as coin, bread, or whatever else the inscription denotes. After the corpse, came the relatives of the deceased, all in white clothes, soiled, dirty, and unornamented, and, therefore, descriptive of excessive grief. Some of them howled and exclaimed most vehemently, and every one had a friend on each side to assist him on, and also a servant, bearing over bim a huge umbrella with a deep white fringe, which nearly screened the mourner from the public gaze.
Some women also followed as mourners, borne in small coaches similar to our sedans, and they were very loud in the expression of their lamentations. After them came a crowd of friends, all walking slowly, and thus the procession closed.
The burying-places of the Chinese are erected in the shape of grottos, without their towns. They are divided into a variety of small cells, in each of which a coffin is laid, and, as soon as the cells are all filled, the sepulchre is closed.
No religious service takes place—the coffin is placed in its receptacle with great solemnity, and then the procession returns.
Funerals in Turkey, which I have observed at Smyrna, are extremely different. Instead of delay, as with the Chinese, the corpse is hurried to the grave within a few hours after dissolution. Instead of the slow step of grief, they go forward hastily, and if the bearers of the body tire, no good Mussulman will refuse to give assistance in a work so holy. There exists a traditional declaration of Mahomet, that whoever bears a dead body forty paces towards the grave, will thereby expiate a great sin, and this opportunity of easy absolution is by some anxiously looked out for. The male relations follow, but there is no weeping-10 grief-nature is so far subdued amongst them that not a tear is shed. Alms and prayers are the modes in which a Mahometan displays grief-to repine for the dead, is con