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In furious rage, to grapple with the storm!
Mark now,..... and now,.

How, with his hissing jaws, he swallow'd up
The lightnings darted from yon lurid cloud!—
And would'st thou trust a foe so treacherous?-
In place of watching here the lights, to guide
Poor wanderers through the night, with the dark waves
Thyself contend? Thou foolish child!-The sea
Is of this changeful life an emblem true.-

Then blest are they, who, from the sheltering walls
That for her vot'ries here Devotion builds,
Look calmly on the terrors of the flood.

Dor. What meanʼst thou, father?
Casp. Listen!-When I look

Into those clear unclouded eyes of thine,
Methinks they never should with tears be fill'd,
Even on this tearful earth ;-but while their light
Is yet unclouded, should Devotion come,

And o'er each misery of our fleeting life,
Draw the kind shelt'ring veil. Therefore, when I
No more can aid thee here, then hie thee straight
Into a convent.


To a convent!-No!-
Father, 'twas not 'mid flowery shelt❜ring vales,
But on the cold shores of the sea, that thou
Rear'd'st up thy daughter. Early was I wont
On Nature's wildest moods to look untroubled.-
Thus, on the storm and raging floods, when all
Besides were struck with terror, I could gaze
Calmly; the ocean wild had been my playmate !-
Nay, was I not in childhood taught to guide
The helm, and, in a tottering bark alone,
To lose myself far 'mid the weltering waves,
Till scarcely could thy signals bring me home?—
When, too, at morning's fresh and fragrant hour,
The birds with their first matins call'd me forth
To join in homage, have I not, beneath

The boundless dome of Heaven, rejoicing kneel'd ?-
Beneath me, murmuring deep, the waves renew'd
Their solemn music;-clouds came reverently,
Ranging themselves along the vasty choir,-
Till from the orient too, the high priest rose,
In festal garments, and on the horizon,
As from an altar, spread his dazzling arms,
Saluting thus the stilly world-" Wake, wake!
Ye habitants unnumber'd of this earth,-
Awake to Love and Joy. In me, behold
Heaven's messenger of blessing and protection !"—

In this last passage, (which appears to us to evince much of real imagination,) there is at least an example afforded of that association of thought with the scenery and influences of nature, on which the best eloquence of the poet depends, but of which German writers avail themselves but seldom, the Swedish and Danish poets more frequently, but the French and Italian authors almost never. During the rest of this scene, Caspar goes on to explain for what reasons he wishes

that his daughter should renounce the vanities of this life. By their dialogue here, we are already, in some measure, prepared for what is to follow. He warns her particularly against falling in love, by adverting to the unhappy fate of Ulrick, her paternal uncle, who becomes afterwards, in a great measure, the hero of the piece. He, as we have already mentioned, had been, by the stratagems of a seducer, deprived of his wife, and believes that she had been lost at sea, from which,

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Ulr. Sing not, the harp is mine.-Wherefore did'st thou
Not wake me?-Heard'st thou not the tempest call ?—
Come,-light me up the steps, that I may gain
The summit of the tower.-

The conversation is now interrupted by the increasing storm, and by the closing in of night. Dorothea draws and fixes a cord, which lifts the cover of the lamps, and Caspar retires to light them. The daughter then being left alone, sings two stanzas of a kind of allegorical love song, accompanied by the harp; and in the third scene, Ulrick, the madman, strangely dressed, makes his first appearance.


Go not to-night,
I pray you. Mark there, how it howls without!-

Ulr. Girl, know'st thou not that I, through many a year,
Have here been pledged to meet the storm?-Then listen!-
'Twas I myself, who sent him forth to-night,-

That on his quick wings, he from shore to shore

Should travel, nay, into the palaces,

And lowly cottages, with violence break,

Should search through every land,—and if he found her—
Her-mark you-then with sure intelligence,
He should return to me.-

Poor uncle!



Still as I heard the rustling of his wings,
Faithfully did I here await his coming,
And watch'd with fearful anxious heart,-if he

We should require no farther proof that v. Houvald is a poet, than his conception, (however inadequately developed) of this character. The notion of the madman keeping watch during every storm, that he may recover the lost object of his affections from the sea, and sending forth the wild music of his harp to the winds of night, is an idea which none but a German could have afforded to treat


Had nought to announce. Yet nothing have I learn'd—
He hath but scourg'd the guilty Sea that bore

Her from me!-Give me now the harp, that I
May sing aloud, for if he cannot yet

Bring news for me, yet should he come to-night,
Well knowing what I suffer, he shall take

My mournful notes over the wild waves with him,
And bear them unto her.

(Takes the Harp.)

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Casp. Hast thou been woke then? Truly, I believed,
Thou in the haven of calm repose might'st have
Outslept the storm;-for 'twill indeed arrive,—
A fearful night!-


In the grave I cannot sleep-
My night is not yet come. When the winds howl,
I may not rest-Hark, how they call on me!-
Let me now climb upon the balcony.


Stay here!
Scarce 'could'st thou now support thyself against
The giant struggles of the storm. Even I
Could hardly light the lamps.--

Ulrick now tries to untie the cord, by which the lamps are visibly affected in the tower above.

Casp. (withholding him). What would'st thou do? Draw not the cord, or else

My lights will be extinguished.


Speaks with me, then we both desire no light;—
Nay, he himself wrapt moon and stars in clouds,
Because we, none of us, do care to look
Into each other's grim and ghastly faces.

When the storm

Casp. Ulrick, hast thou forgot then, that the lamps
Must burn, and that my duty here is but
To guard them? When the tempest rages thus,
Poor wand'ring mortals cannot through the depth
Of darkness steer their way, if love fraternal
Supplies not light and guidance.


Has Love, too,
Bid mortals sever fond confiding hearts?—
Methinks, if all were dark-if no lights burn'd,
One could not from his love be sunder'd thus-

All then would stay at home.—(Earnestly, and with emotion.)
Brother, pray,

Poor Ulrick!-Ha!

Close up the lamps again!

(Distant firing heard.) Too surely,

Mark there again-it was a cannon shot.
The signal of a ship that calls for aid.
Ulr. Nay, 'twas the tempest's call.
I must unto the tower.

Casp. (to Dor.)

He cannot rest else.

Ulr. (in going out.) Hear'st thou, brother-
I pray thee, darken out the lamps.

Now light me up

Then lead him thither.

Dorothea accordingly takes a light to guide him up stairs, and Ulrick follows with the harp.

Casp. (alone). Was it but the re-echoing of the thunder,

Or have I heard aright? Did the same voice,
That summons death in battle, call even now
For aid against him, while amid this rage
Of elemental war, he grimly looks
For booty?-Hark, another shot!-

Dor. (returning).
Ay, father-
Doubtless it was the signal of distress-
A ship in danger.


Now then, in all haste,
Must I go forth, and if the wind allows me,
Kindle a fire upon the beach, that so,
The sailors with their boat, if the ship perish,
May safelier reach the land. The trumpet, too,
I bear with me, that through the rayless gloom,
And roaring waves, my voice may penetrate,
And warn the sufferers, that fraternal love,
And sympathy, keep watch here for their aid,-
Meanwhile I do entrust the lamps to thee.
Take heed then, that they brightly burn: Beware
Of sleep.

Dor. Fear not, I shall be watchful.

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He goes out with the lantern, &c. leaving Dorothea alone, who soliloquizes through some verses, during which are heard the roaring of the storm, and dashing of the sea; by fits too, the wild music and song of Ulrick, on which she says―

Hark! 'mid the conflict wild
Of warring elements, he stedfastly

Pours in full tones his songs of love. Alas!
Will that heart now no more obtain repose?
Will calmness never lull its storms, and never
On the dark waste of waves one gleam of light
Arise to say that love for thee yet watches?

While Dorothea remains thus alone, Walter enters, whereupon commences that scene on which the fatal events of the evening chiefly depend. For the first time, he makes known to her some consistent anecdotes of his own life; but these, however shadowy, are enough to suggest conjectures who he really is, which are soon afterwards fully confirmed

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She was indeed my mother. I had been
To her a pledge of former love,-of marriage,
Whose bonds, alas! she had herself dissolved.-
Then I must wander forth, and, on the land
Far distant, seek atonement for her crime;
Must find my father, him so long forsaken;
And, prostrate at his feet, for her obtain

(Music from the harp, and voice of Ulrick on the tower.)
Hark! what notes are these-so soft
And wild?

Dor. From the roof they come.
Mine uncle there,
As wont, renews his melancholy songs.

Wal. Oh, ye sweet tones! amid the tempest's rage,
That howls without, ye come like consolation
To souls that long have been of joy devoid.
Heaven! let it but be granted to me such
To bear unto my mother!

Dor. Have you then

Your father found already?

Wal. No! yet blame not
The son, if he, as if spell-bound, must here
Tarry beside the light-tower!

He then goes on to describe in a wild visionary style, how, during his voyage, strange love-dreams had haunted and possessed him, of which the influence continued, until they were more than realized by his meeting with Dorothea. He recalls, too, the story of his shipwreck, his rescue by Caspar in the life-boat, his astonishment on perceiving that Dorothea, like some goddess of the sea, accompanied her father on that perilous adventure. Hers indeed was the first countenance that

he beheld, and of course she appeared as a messenger from heaven, sent for his deliverance. Meanwhile, Ulrick, when they are thus occupied, steps in and pulls the cord, by which the lamps are immediately extinguished. The melo-dramatic effect of this scene is more easily conceived than described. He remains afterwards serious, and " erhaben,” (i. e. in a lofty mood,) leaning behind him on his harp; at length, on a speech of Walter, concluding thus—

As the stars' bright radiance
Falls on our dim earth, so the light of love
Beams on a desolate heart. Even like the stars,
That are eternal, so shall this light, too,
Not perish!

Ulrick in a deep hollow voice interposes→→→
Ulr. Even already are your lights
All darken'd!

Ha! who calls?
Wal. See there! the harper!

Ulr. All lights are darken'd now,-as in the heart,
So in the air and sky!

Dor. Oh Heaven, 'tis true!

The beacon-lamps are out. Oh, hapless mariners,
Who have on them depended for their rescue,

And vainly strain their eyes in hopes of guidance,
Which finding not, they perish in the flood,
And I alone am guilty!

Caspar's voice, through the trumpet, is then heard from below-she runs to him-Walter follows. Ulric remains, and after a pause, during which he looks to heaven, says—

Ulr. Thou hast thy stars all clouded in the sky;
Night wraps in darkness now the restless waves.
Wherefore, then, should vain mortals kindle light?
They cannot change the eternal plans of fate;
Wherefore, then, with presumptuous hand essay
To check the rolling wheels of destiny?
Out-out, ye lights! ye shall be darken'd all ;—
Vain is your aid! The mariners must not
Find guidance now-IT SHALL BE NIGHT!

He remains with stretched-out arms in a commanding posture, and the dropscene falls. Thus ends the first act.

The second opens at the dawn of day. The scene is a wild rocky shore, on which Ulrick first appears alone with his harp,-Caspar and Dorothea enter, the former blaming his daughter for her negligence; but Ulrick vehemently defends her.

Child, thy guilt

Dor. Oh, father, have compassion!
Is all dissolved; thine accusation torn !—
When Fate in judgment sits, there needs no light
From man, therefore did I restore the rights
Of darkness.-Brother, blame thy daughter not;
We both are guiltless. By resistless power
Compell'd, I drew the cord, and night resumed
Her wonted power.

Ulrick, alas!

What hast thou done!

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