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the Eighth and his daughter Elizabeth; past Ross Island, with its ancient stronghold of the O'Donoghoes; past the mouth of Glena Bay, with "Dinis' green isle" seen dimly through the hazy moonlight-it was then that O'Sullivan's voice broke the silence.
"Had we but music on board," said he, "we might sail up the bay to the Eagle's Nest."
"Music need not be wanting," said Florence. "With permission of the Countess, I have brought Lady Ellen's lute; it may be that she will favor us so far as to play somewhat. I dare not ask such a grace, but you, Owen, she will scarce refuse."
"That I will answer for," said O'Sullivan, and the Countess, in a low voice, told her daughter at once to accede to the request.
Lady Ellen took the lute from the hand of Florence, though it must be owned with no gracious air, and while the boat glided up the narrow channel between
"Dinis' green isle and Glena's wooded shore,"
played a strain of the elder time, slow and simple, such as "Killarney's wild echoes" best repeat.
The air was a sad one, and as the fairy-like echoes caught it up, repeating it in every possible way, it seemed as though the spirits of the dead were wailing on every craggy steep above, and along the shadowed waters that lay beneath, dark as the river of death. While all listened, as if entranced, Lady Ellen stopped suddenly and laid down the lute; her heart was sad that hour, she knew not why-sad and troubled-and her own mournful music was more than she could bear. Yet she could not, and would not, wake a livelier strain.
No one spoke, but Ellen felt the instrument drawn gently from her hand, and the next moment a bolder hand swept its chords with a strange wild prelude that went ringing like the sound of many trumpets away among the rocks and mountains. Before the young lady had recovered from the first surprise, the strain was changed, and a wild, sweet Spanish air was floating on the night breeze, and breaking, in fitful snatches, from lonely caves where the echoes dwelt.
The air was the same that for months long had been