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And as if all this was not enough, the Spanish sovereigns, in strange contradiction of their previous conduct, not only issued their edict of immediate expulsion, but subjoined to it such provisions as most painfully affected the Jews. They were to be rendered not exiles only, but paupers too. They were forbidden to carry away with them their enormous sums of silver and gold, the earnings of their toil, although bills of exchange, the substitute granted them, as their persecutors well knew, could only be partially obtained. They were obliged to sell their houses and lands, their goods and chattels, for a mere pittance, or leave them behind unsold. They sacrificed upon compulsion all that wealth, which could alone have proved an alleviation of their distress.
Against the enforcement of the edict, the Jews strove earnestly but vainly. They sent immediately their ambassadors to their Sovereigns' feet, to lay before them their tale of agony and their plea for mercy. They remonstrated, they entreated, they wept before them. They told them that they had ever been orderly and peaceable subjects, that they had never raised voice nor arm against the safety of the realm. They were to be banished for no transgression, no crime of their people. The old charges, which were now afresh revived against them, had long since been disproved. They had never lacked in loyalty ; they had never misused their prosperity; they had never, as old traditions said, kidnapped and crucified Christian children; they had never, as physicians, poisoned Christian patients; they had never sought alliances with Christian Spaniards; they had never done aught, in deed or word, against the Christian's religion, and if they had not become its votaries, it was only because they could not yield to its persuasions to renounce the darling faith of their fathers and themselves. Why should they be banished? They offered presents of their gold ; (the ambassadors had with them 30,000 ducats, which their brethren had already contributed to defray the expenses of the Moorish war;) they professed a willingness to suffer any sacrifice, to submit to any honorable test of their fidelity and loyalty. And when Isabella, forgetting in the occasion her assumed severity, and moved by the sorrowful entreaty, might perhaps have forbidden her decree ; at the moment of her indecision, the Grand Inquisitor, Torquemada, frantic with zeal and rage, trusting in the power of his position, rushed boldly into her presence, and holding high alost his crucifix, in a voice choked with passion, told his Sovereigns, “ Judas Iscariot sold his master for thirty. pieces of silver-your highnesses would sell him for thirty thousand; here he is, take him and barter him,”—and rushed as madly forth; the seal was fixed upon the destiny of the Jews, and they were expelled from Spain.
All remonstrance, all entreaty, all efforts of any kind whatever, were now fruitlessly ended, and the Jews bore the fate, from which they could not escape, with sorrowful, but that proverbially Jewish resignation. They maintained their unwavering constancy amid all the misfortune. Although the priests were continually thundering forth invectives against their Hebrew religion, or gently striving, by bribe and entreaty, to persuade them to a Christian faith, the commands of their
Rabbies, telling them to regard these sufferings as a new trial of their faith by the Almighty, were obeyed, and they chose to abandon their country rather than their religion. The wealthiest of their numbers, with a kindness natural in Jew to Jew, gave freely from their stores to those whom Spanish extortion had made poorer than themselves. All were busily preparing for departure. There was little delay, for it was no time for procrastination. The dark-haired maiden took leave of her weeping lover, for they had chosen different routes of pilgrimage, and each bade the other trust in Providence to meet again. Brother told brother, and sister her sister, a long and sad farewell. And the old man could ill repress the tear he would not shed, as he clasped for the last time the hand of his ancient friend. What dreadful separations then were there !!
On the day of departure, slowly the little bands, once so happy, toiled onward in the melancholy ways of pilgrimage which they had severally chosen. Their appearance was pitiful in the extreme-all the routes were filled with their numbers. There were feeble women with their helpless children, and men, so weak with grief, that their bowed forms promised little assistance and little protection-some journeying on horses and some on mules, but far the most of them on foot. At sight of so much misery, even the Spaniards wept over their cruelty and their bigoted persecutions. But their grief was vain. Their hard masters were inexorable. They could not, they dared not succor nor harbor them, nor minister to their necessities—it was forbidden them under pain of the severest penalties. On, the unhappy Jews labored, as they had been commanded, unassisted and alone ; on, until very soon there were none of their race in Spain. Thus was their golden age forever ended ; and a truly iron one succeeded.
We do not wish to follow the ill-starred wanderers in their exilethat exile is an unbroken tale of greater suffering and woe than that which we have just told. They wandered through scenes of constant persecution and of bloodshed; and at last found no quiet nor pleasant resting-places. Most of them passed into Portugal, whose monarch, John the 2d, treated them leniently, allowing all of them, on payment of a small tax, free passage through his dominions, and a few of them even to establish themselves in his realm. Some passed by sea, thence
to Africa, where they fell among thieves and robbers—others to Italy, · where they were alllicted with terrible diseases—and the remainder were dispersed throughout England, France, and Turkey, unbefriended and often again persecuted. We shall here drop this unpleasant theme of one nation's folly, and another's sorrow, to speak a few general words upon the Jews and their character.
Much has been very unkindly spoken of the character of the Jews. Their enemies, and we might call them the world, forgetful of all the sympathy and leniency due to the past distressing situations of the nation, have always been prone to judge most harshly of them. They seem to have ever forgotten that a Jew has eyes or hands, “organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions," as themselves, good Christians have, and looked upon him only as
a mark for cuffs and curses.
To justify their ill-treatment of him, they have brought all manner of charges against him. They have accused bim, and to some extent with truth, of extreme avarice. But is there no excuse for the Jew's avarice? Are there no peculiar palliating circumstances in his case ? Is it remembered, that by his avarice alone he can obtain wealth, and by his wealth comfort and respect ? The Jew's covetousness cannot compare with the Christian's. He stands on no common social level with him. But his gold is his only hope—it is his only shield from derision and insult-and shall he be censured that he does not throw it aside ? His injurers have and yet will often come to him with fawning looks and honeyed words to say, “Shylock, we would have money,”although this Shylock were the very Hebrew cur they had yesterday spurned and spit upon. Was it then strange that Shylock, in all the bitterness of the remembrance of these fresh injuries, should have exulted in his hope of revenge, and demanded from his Antonio even a bond for a pound of his flesh as security for his loan?
It has been asked in a tone of condemnation, why has the Jew never mingled freely with the Christian? Why has he always persisted in withholding himself from familiar intercourse with him ? ' But the union was never voluntary, for the Jew. The barriers which have existed between them, were reared by the Christian. The Jew has always been treated as a stranger and an enemy, and it was not for him to demand a hospitality which it was known he needed, but which was never extended to him. And it is further inquired, why the hatred, why the opposition of the Jew to the Christian ? Opposition there is not. The Jew has always chosen the defensive. Truly has he said, “ For sufferance is the badge of all our tribe.” For his hatred, he has abundant cause. On that day in which the Romans sacked the beautiful city of his Lord, and hurled each stone of his sacred temple from its resting place, his hatred of the world commenced—and time, with its many sorrows, has only increased it. Amid the world of his enemies and persecutors, Christians have been chief-yet it is asked, why does the Jew hate Christians ?
Butavarice and hate are not the natural—they are the acquired passions of the Jew. There are qualities of the heart within him, which have not been begotten by sorrow-love and generosity to his brethren, reverence for his faith, gratitude to his benefactors, adoration for his God. And may we now hope, that as the dark night is past, the dawn come and gone, that in this bright morning of the day of Liberty, the Jew's troubles may be forever ended ?
RECOLLECTIONS OF SICILY.
The characteristics of our age, certainly in many points a remarkable one, have been the object of much curious investigation by inany varieties of men, and have been differently named according to the diversity of acuteness, of perseverance, or of political ambition in the various operators. Of the class of men who prefer a dimly visible plausibility to a clear and simple truth, provided the former relate to what we reverently and sometimes very ignorantly worship as mind, and the latter to what we disparagingly style matter, is one whose members are by a figure of speech we presume, called philosophers, and are almost immediately upon their christening, presented by the public their godfather with the coral and bells of unasking credulity. Now as we are not surprised, if the child in the gradual appreciation of its pulmonic powers occasionally deafens us by the use of the godfather's donation, neither should we be astonished if we occasionally perceive our philosopher practising extensively on the public's gift-nor should we in the one case more than in the other, be displeased. Occasionally the bells tinkle lustily of natural equality, the rights of man, democratic perfection, and such like music ; occasionally the whistle sounds the triumph of mesmerism and magnetic telegraphs, hydropathy and homæopathy—but the key note of his toy is the characteristics of the age. The power of the whistle varies, and so does the capability of the philosopher's toy—and accordingly at one time his note says reform-at another, speculation—at another, religious enthusiasm-ai another, inordinate ambition or the opposites of these, and so on. Now without owning the toy, or having been admitted to the philosophic fraternity, I pronounce one strong characteristic to be travel and a fondness for journal writing.
Solomon once said, I believe, that there was nothing new under the sun—and I make less question of the truth of his remark, every journal_diary-pencilings-sketches-or scraps that I peruse. I have been over a large portion of Europe, and have seen many varieties of scenery, mode of life, costume and government; and though I may have found a few things new to me, I do not distinctly recollect one that was new to any of the large numbers of fellow travelers whom I casually met. Varieties of all kinds which I had in earlier days regarded with that formal respect which arises from not having been presented, I discovered to be familiar to the thoughts and lips of everybody else--and unfortunately for the gainsayers of Solomon, always in the same dress, with the same forms, the same graces, nay, even the same perfumes. Nor was that all. Did I open a “ hand book," a “ tourist's companion,” a “ hint on foreign travel,” or any thing of that description, I generally perceived one or more of the same acquaintances smiling or frowning or quoting poetry from behind the page. Wherever I went, whether I joined company with a novice or an old stager at the “grand tour,” I generally met the same chaperons, nor can I say that I regretted it. By thus selecting a few companions of fair reputation, and making their acquaintance an essential, much other company is necessarily excluded, which might have been more original, less blaze, or less artificial, but possibly not more the thing—and from meeting the same individuals everywhere one becomes acquainted with their peculiar style of conversation, and all redundant thought or observation is in consequence dispensed with.
Take it all in all, this want of novelty was not so very difficult a thing to habituate myself to, and I accommodated myself with greater ease perhaps from anticipations of a different state of things in America. But, when I returned to my home I found no such change. New edi. tions of John Murray were called for; journals, diaries, &c. were still manufacturing, and still with the same amount of soap to the same number of hogsheads of water, to borrow Carlysle’s illustration-indeed, there was "nothing new under the sun.” To be sure one of these collections of soapsuds called the Simplon, “ the highway of Hannibal and Napoleon”—and put the Venetian Broca de Leone on the steps of the Doge's palace-but these were merely different dispositions of the same puppets ; the amount of wax, paint, and machinery, was the same.
Now reader, I fear I have been all this time only training a dog to bite mysell, for there can be but little doubt that what is now about to exercise your eyes will have some of the outward form of the hogshead-that is, it will be of the nature of a journal; but as to the amount of soap-1 shall not tell you what grocery store I patronize, and you will thus be unable to ascertain it. Neither shall I advertise to make so much suds or to make it all myself ; I do not conceive this necessary : only let me tell you beforehand not to take for your motto, non creditur nisi juratis,” and not to seek for history, chronology, botany, piety, or any thing but a few moment's occupation in what you read-formerly, if I remember aright, a desideratum at Yale-since if you get of these plums in your pie it will be the offering of pure generosity, and if you don't, John Murray aforesaid sells the licensed article, and I don't feel competent to underbid the trade. Having said then thus much, which in a few words is nothing more than that the views which travelers in Europe have of what they see, appear to me to be in the majority of instances stereotyped, and can be had with greater accuracy from the books, whence they are in a great measure primarily taken, than in the collated extracts of any individual ; and that the telling an oft told tale is as disagreeable to me as the necessity of listening to one myself, I may safely commence my narrative.
It was on a most lovely afternoon in February, that I found myself on board the little steamer Palermo, just weighing her anchor in the bay of Naples. The steam was rushing with noisy violence from its pipe, seeming with its shrill scream to chide the lazy vessel for its sloth, ihe crew were laboring at the bars. The captain was where only an Italian captain could be, just where he should not ; the passengers were grouped together in litile knots, or eagerly hurrying to and fro in search of friends or luggage ;- in fine, that short scene of confusion was being