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When the news of what had been done at Hacquemont came to Bordeaux, and the ancient merchant who had the packet in charge delivered to the Lady Odille her husband's letter, the widow's mourning for many day's after was real. It was embittered, too, by some sharp twinges of remorse for a while, she thought that nothing would fill the void of the great love that she had never valued till now. Nevertheless, two years later, when Gualtier de Marsan urged his suit, she listened readily; and, during the brief peace of Bruges, they were married. The intercession of Du Guesclin easily obtained for Odille's husband the investiture of all the fiefs of Hacquemont.
There, for many years, those two dwelt-very happy, in a grave quiet way; for old times were never quite forgotten-and children grew up around them, who listened eagerly to the story of the puissant champion; who once saved Hacquemont with his single arm; and afterwards, by his desperate defence, made it famous through France.
Over Ralph Brakespeare's grave in the castle chapel was laid a fair marble slab; whereon were graved a name, a date, and an escutcheon. The escutcheon bore-not the arms of Hacquemont, but a device better fitted to the life, the fortunes, and the death of the strong soldier, who early in life cut himself adrift from kith and kin, and struggled onward as a nameless man-the device of
Two splintered lances crossed on a sable field.
THE END OF BRAKESPEARE.
The American Literati at Home.
BY GEORGE MAKEPEACE TOWLE.
United States' Consul at Nantes.
CAMBRIDGE, Massachusetts, best known as the seat of Harvard University, is one of the pleasantest of that circle of suburban towns which surround Boston, and which afford an airy retreat, at the close of the day, to the merchants of the capital. The University town, it is true, affords but little variety of landscape scenery; it stands upon a broad, flat plain which is bisected by the river Charles, and is bounded, on the side toward Boston, by what is called the "BackBay," an arm of the sea which nearly surrounds the metropolis, and merges into marshes further on. A long bridge, passing over the "Bay" and the lowland, connects Boston with its pet University.
The most popular mode of conveyance is what the Americans call the "horse-car"-a sort of railway carriage set upon tracks and rapidly drawn by horses. The horse-cars start at frequent intervals from the summit of Bowdoin Hill (one of the three hills on which Boston stands), and will set you down, in less than half-an-hour, opposite the group of University buildings; while, by riding a quarter of an hour further you reach the imposing portal of that most beautiful of American cemeteries-Mount Auburn. Let us suppose ourselves cozily seated in one of these horse-cars, and observe the general features of the panorama as far as the University. We discover our companions in the car to be of that miscellaneous character which one reasonably expects to find in a public conveyance, in a republican country. Negroes, apparently in prosperous condition, and strikingly in contrast with the same race further South, are not seldom your next neighbours; Irish labourers and working women have an evident fondness for enjoying, for once, a practical equality with their betters in a conveyance free to all; in the Cambridge car, too, you will not fail to meet a sprinkling of University students, whom you will remark as generally younger and more jaunty than Oxonians; and besides, literary men, merchants, tradespeople, and ladies going to and from town on shopping excursions. Our horse-car rapidly descends Bowdoin Hill, and we soon find ourselves whirling over the bridge. Here we have an extensive view of Boston and its environs. Behind us rises a symmetrical hill, on whose summit stands the yellow-domed State House, far above the surrounding buildings; the sides of the hill are
covered thickly by tall brick houses; here and there appear spires and factory chimneys. To our right lies the broad, flat city of Charlestown, with its busy navy yard, and the plain granite shaft of Bunker Hill monument rising from its midst; a little nearer is East Cambridge, a stupid place, smoky and grim, standing on a peninsula. The most agreeable prospect is that to the left; here you see a range of graceful hills, covered with foliage in summer, dotted over with elegant suburban residences; and at their feet the homelike towns of Brookline, Roxbury, and Brighton. As we leave the bridge and enter Cambridge, our first impressions of the University city are by no means agreeable. At first appear a few straggling wooden houses— mostly carpenters', coal depots, pauper boarding-houses, and dirty "bar-rooms"; along the street a few sickly trees, dust-covered; total absence of comfort everywhere. Progressing further, we reach a more thickly settled quarter; the buildings are larger and neater; the people seem more intelligent and well-to-do; the street is wider and more shady, and the air more pleasant. Soon the car makes a sudden turn to the right, and we find ourselves in a spacious thoroughfare, the centre of that newer part of Cambridge which is called Cambridgeport. A short distance further we come to a gentle hill, which the car ascends slowly enough to enable us to take note of the elegant rural residences on either side. At intervals are thriving hedges, tasteful gardens, and lawns, and pretty shaded avenues. Groups of students begin to appear, not in gowns and caps, which are eschewed in American universities. They are straggling along, student-fashion, at least those who are coming toward us; others, going in the direction of the University, hasten to be in time for "recitation"; mostly jaunty and snobbish in dress and demeanour, some studious and sallow, deep in books as they hurry by; others, marching off sturdily for exercise, laughing boisterously as they go. School girls, meeting them, glance furtively out from beneath dainty little hats, and having passed them, go giggling homeward. Occasionally faces pass, which we rightly conjecture to be those of University professors; members of that sober calling are seldom without some outward eccentricity which betrays their bent. The community, as we pass over Dana Hill, is looking decidedly more scholastic; there is a repose, a dignified quiet and dreaminess about the neighbourhood which foreshadows the seat of learning. From the windows of the frame houses, right and left you may see students hanging, who reside out of college, in luxurious dressing-gowns and smoking-caps. Once in a while you observe, within the windows, a student in deed as in name, pyramids of lexicons
piled up before him, his hands plunged into his hair, the frown studious on his brow; this one is looking forward to the plaudits of "Commencement Day." And now, as we approach the University, the dwellings and their surroundings are striking for a homely and unpretending beauty. Plots of green lawns, inclosed by tasteful fences, interrupt the irregular street; huge elms stand on every corner, and bend gently over almost every house; gardens, well kept, lay over the terrace sides; and croquet wickets hold quiet empire over little spaces here and there. The only sounds are the chirping of birds, the occasional laughter or screaming of the students, and the constant tinkle of horse-car bells; now and then the deep clang of the "Great Tom" of Harvard. A sudden curve brings the grounds and buildings of the University full in view. The horse-car passes along its broadest boundary, and you see in succession, the beautiful Gothic library with its blue stone pinnacles, the great marble hall of recitation, the new Museum of Anatomy, of solid granite and with French roof; in the background, the massively plain Appleton Chapel, and, distributed without regard to order or symmetry, the ancient dormitories of brick which formed the original group of University buildings.
The University grounds, as all Cambridge, are a dead level; the lawn is intersected by paths and avenues, and these are bordered by stately rows of elms, which, in summer, shade nearly the whole space. There is here that significantly studious quiet which best befits the seat of learning; a student, or a group, or now and then a citizen, crossing the grounds, are the only symptoms of life; except that, at the close of a recitation, a class, with much ado and noise, comes tumbling out of the marble hall, more boisterous, ruder, more boyish than the Oxonians. These scatter, after a moment's frolic, to their several rooms, to give place to another class, which comes rushing in, and pell-mell launches itself on the benches before the sedate professor. At the further corner of the University grounds (where you observe a Parthenon-like edifice, which is the Law School, where Story once taught), our vehicle stops in the middle of a small, busy, by no means handsome square-" Harvard Square"-where the shops are, the Post Office, and the Town Hall-the only busy, wide-awake quarter of "old Cambridge." Here is the junction of the horse-car railway; you may diverge thence in half-a-dozen directions. One notes in passing a cozy little book-shop at one of the corners of the "Square" (which is really triangular) and, likely enough, a bevy of students, or learned professors in spectacles, delving into the recently issued books: this is the "University Book Store."
Our object being to hunt up some of the celebrities who have found a congenial home in the vicinity of the University, we will change horse-cars, and enter that which announces itself as bound for "Mount Auburn"; for the same road which conducts to the end of fame and all mortality-to the stately tombs of the dead, passes also the dwellings of the two most famous of living American poets. This road, over which passes yearly some sorrowful train, bearing to the last resting-place one of great or good renown, is yet cheerful and grateful to the sight. It winds and curves many times, as if loath to lead too quickly to the silent habitations beyond; and always conducts beneath trees of generous verdure, beside pretty embowered cottages and noble mansions, green slopes and lawns, and through a landscape in cheerful and graceful repose-seemingly without and beyond the world of strifes and jars. You have hardly had time to feel the pleasant sensations and thoughts produced by a contemplation of this rus in urbe inhabited by scholars, when you are set down opposite the gate which leads to the house of the poet Longfellow. It is but a three minutes' ride from "Harvard Square"; so near, that on any morning you may see the poet, disdainful of carriages, walking with brisk, light step, to the Post Office for his daily mail, which you may also see him opening and attentively reading as he comes back again.
It is certainly a grand old estate, this residence of Longfellow's ; almost too grand, indeed, to harmonize with one's romantic notion of what the abode of rhyme-compelling genius should be. It is such a house as the untitled family aristocracy of America are wont to delight in, very ancient for the new world, built with that substantial massiveness and unpretending plainness which symbolize the characteristics of pre-revolutionary generations. A simple, low, stone wall, settled a little by time, separates the square lawn from the street; half way rises a high, plain, wooden gateway. Looking with ease over the wall, the passer-by may survey at leisure the residence of the poet and its surroundings. On either side of the walk from the gate to the house is a pretty simple lawn, carefully kept, unvaried by trees. In the centre is a fountain which, however, is covered with moss, whether by neglect or through the fancy of the proprietor, we know not. A small terrace surrounds the house, which is a few feet above the lawn; steps conduct one up to the huge, slightly ornamented door. On either side, and at the back of the house are some large, handsome elms, beyond them a neat, but plain garden. Around the edge of the walls which separate this estate from neighbouring ones, are groups of