L'Esplendente [part 18]

The instant he cherished this fond idea the next moment's reflection prompted him to abandon it. - Thus almost the whole Night was consumed in doubt - & trembling conjectures. - what do I feel thought Ferdinand within himself - what mean these anxieties - & flattering delusions - I am no longer what I was a few Hours ago. - Filled with these new sensations he dropped asleep - & was surprised to find it late the next Morning before he awoke to hear the Grandee calling him into the Garden - The Weather being very sultry - he found his canvass & colours prepared for the Portrait in a Pavillion which was almost concealed - by rose bushes & waving poplars. - [125] Some Cushions were placed Under the cover of these Shrubs. - & whilst he was arranging them Rosalia appeared - amongst the Thickets. - He trembled like a Criminal at her approach - conscious of the aspiring thoughts which had haunted him so lately. - The Duke having told her she was to sit for her portrait - she had bestowed more attention than usual upon her dress - A few jessamine flowers - perfumd her auburn locks - a drapery of muslin - fell around her in mazy folds - her white arms were pressed by golden bracelets - & round her waist - was bound a silken Shawl. - Her eyes - tho dark & brilliant had yet a languid sweetness - the turn of her face was perfectly antique - & when she cast herself negligently on the grass - the young painter thought he beheld - one of those lovely Grecians - so graceful in the designs of Raphael - [126] After he was a little recovered from the surprise of her first appearance - he began his sketch - then paused to look - but look'd so long - that the Duke - took notice of his earnestness & asked him if he was not certain of catching the ressemblance. - One cannot be too sure answered Ferdinand...with some confusion. - Continue said d'Arcos drinking his chocolat - I dare say you will succeed - Rosalia smiled at a Dialogue of which she was the subject & looking often at the Painter - when she thought herself unperceived - could not - but admire - his interesting countenace - & when it was time to withdraw - she felt - a desire of still lingering in the pavillion & leaned several minutes against one of its pillars - pretending to examine her portrait - Her bracelet happening to fall - [127] Ferdinand stooped to pick it up - & in presenting it his hand touched hers - A lively red flushed both their countenaces at the same instant - Both felt - a subtle fire - thrilling thro their veins. - Happily - the Grandee was engaged in reading some Letters - or else he must have discovered - their emotions. - No Duenna was near - & they parted with a visible reluctance casting many a look behind. - As Rosalia moved along the Alleys - a breeze shook of the jessamine blossoms she had wreathed in her Hair - Ferdinand - heedless - & lost in passion - ran swiftly to collect them - pressed the leaves to his lips & hid them in his bosom. - This Sally passed unnoticed - the Duke being emersed in the perusal of some very important papers just received from Madrid - which announced his appointment to the viceroyalty of Majorca. - [128] a post he had been long desirous of obtaining, as it totally delivered him from the officious importunities of his Brother Grandees whose Visits and invitations frequently disturbed the peace of his Retirement. - It was therefore with satisfaction that he communicated this intelligence to Ferdinand at the same time - expressing a wish that he should follow him. - The enamoured Artist most willingly consented when - he found Rosalia was not to be left behind. - & suffered a train of lively hopes - to kindle in his bosom. - Some favourable moment - some propitious opportunity might offer itself he thought of declaring his passions - in the course of the Voyage. - D'Arcos - remarked the pleasure with which he received his proposition - & concluded [129] it was solely in his own Account - I like to see people atached to me, said the Grandee & I know how to reward their zeal. - I suppose - it is not every one - whom you would have followed - Certainly not replied Ferdinand - with a most profound obeisance. - After some more Discourse - not worth relating in which the Duke discovered a greater share [of] confidence than penetration they parted mutually pleased. - The young Man - animated by the most pleasing expectations - took some refreshment - scarcely knowing what he was about & wandered - in the most absent manner - over the Garden. - Seeing a Door a jarr - at the end of the Terrace - he pushed it open - & descended by some steps - into a wild pasture at the Base of the Mountains. - Still advancing totally engaged by his own thoughts - he came to a defile - of the Rocks - which he passed - without taking notice of his situation - & sometimes running - sometimes just striding about as the current of his phantasies [ILLEGIBLE] - reached the border - of the Rio de las Piedras - a rapid [130] Torrent, which traverses the Sierra Morena. - Its roar - which the Cliffs rebellowed - rouzed him from his trance - He gazed around - surprised to find himself - in a dreary solitude by an unknown stream - Ramble having rather fatigued him - he lay down - amongst some bulrushes which trembled above the Waters. Their murmurs favoured the pensive tone of his Mind - & the close of Day - came on before he was aware. - Red & angry clouds - hung over the Cliffs - & looking thro their apertures - he saw - the - distant counties in deep blue shade - whilst the Sun seemed sinking in a sea of Blood. - The [ILLEIGBLE WORDS] in the [ILLEGIBLE] of [ILLEGIBLE] - & the - dismal cast of the whole Region now the Dusk approached - made him desirous of quitting it - with precipitation - But some - irresistable power - prolonged his stay. - Feign - would he have - left the Rocks & the mournful borders of the Torrents - but something he [131] knew not what - obliged him to remain. - A cold perspiration bathed his forhead. - his feet refused to bear him up & falling - down - on the grey moss - which covered the surface of the craggs - he lay oppressed & dejected - whilst faint reverberations of some wildly musical sounds stole into his Ear. - The melody - seemed to approach nearer & nearer - but ceased on a sudden - & a voice was then heard - wailing - amongst the promontories. - At this instant - a mist arising from the stream - spread gradually over the Dell. Ferdinand - alarmed & agitated - looked up - & thro the vapours - perceived some one - descending the Cliffs - & advancing towards him. - The Form - at last drew near & he recollected the features of his favourite partner - amongst the Gitanos - with whom - he had passed many delightful Hours at San Lucar. - She smiled upon him - & yet her smiles - were blended with affecting sadness - . - What do I behold - said He - how comes my lovely Gitanilla in this Waste - without her Companions. - Ferdinand answered she you have often scorned my predictions [132] This once - it is lawful for me to warn you - A fatality attends your quitting Andalusia. - Remain then in security - If ever I was dear in your eyes - if ever my remembrance be still beloved - let not my prayers be rejected. - As she spoke - her countenance grew wan - & her limbs assumed such mortal paleness - that Ferdinand - was seized with horrors - Tell me said he - what means this mysterious - language - why do you look so pale - your tone of voice is altered - & your accents once so brisk & lively now chill my soul. - Alas - replied the Gitana I can reveal no more - my <comrades?> call me - Conduct me to them - exclaimed the impetious youth - I long to embrace my old acquaintance - -; but you wave yr Hand - He had Scarcely pronouncd these words [133] before the Form retreated - & winding amongst the Rocks resumed her melancholy sigh - Ferdinand stupified with wonder & dismay followed her with his eyes till she disappeared behind the Cliffs - A strange sensation of Fear - such as he had never before experienced - hindered his attempts to pursue her track - but summoning all his strength - he sprung out of the Dell - with a violent bound - & ran along the margin of the Torrent. - The shrill notes of some unknown instrument - still vibrated in his ear - added wings to his flight - & in a few minutes he escaped from the defiles of the Mountains - - Traversing the pasture at [ILLEGIBLE] by moonlight - he soon reached the steps which led to the Terrace - The moment he had ascended them - he made towards the walls of the Castle - & as he rested under a Tower - heard some one reading in an Appartment above whose Window was open. - Soon he recognized the Voice of Rosalia - [134] reading, aloud to one of her favourite Companions, - some History of Orlando & Charlemain - which she often paused to admire - Splendid were the descriptions of Tilts & Triumphs - the relations of Heroic distress & the crosses of hapless Love - were represented with the greatest energy. - & Ferdinand observing how much they affected Rosalia - took out his Tablets - & made designs after the principal adventures - He past the chief part of the Night in perfecting these sketches - & when he presented them in the Morn: [135] Rosalia was so charmed - that she could not conceal her surprise & admiration. - Instantly they were received - & laid in a perfumed casket - If you are not tired said she with the adventures of Orlando - [ILLEGIBLE] when the Moon rises - your station - under my window - & I [ILLEGIBLE] read as usual - The happy Ferdinand was almost


[The bulk of the manuscript ends here, in mid-sentence]




M. when at Cordova becomes acquainted with Don. J. d'Arcos a grandee of the first Class - paints for him - follows him to Majorca his government. - Castle described pomp of living loves Donna Rosalia his Daughter - burns to tell her who he is - she often visits him when drawing beautiful views in the retired & picturesque recesses of the Isle - Haughtiness of D. Juan - his stern pride - D.R. - reported to be dying. - M's grief - One night after a short & troubled sleep he was awakened by two men in black with white masks - they lead him along passages he had never before observed to a vaulted chamber - a block prepared - dim lamps. - a Bell sounds - a Lady in long Robes of mourning introduced - a confessor - she screams M. thinks himself under the influence of a horrid dream but tries to wake in vain - the Spectres hurry him away & cast him from a window into a tempestuous Ocean - Morning just beginning to dawn - sees a ship - his skill in swimming now of use - is taken up - treated kindly - a Moorish vessel bears down upon them - fight his Friend the Captain who had listened so piteously to his tale slain by [137] his side - behaves with unheard of Valor - Moors admire but oppress him loaded with Chains & cast into a Dungeon at Tetuan &c &c &c -




Introduction to L'Esplendente
Part 1 ::: Part 2 ::: Part 3 ::: Part 4 ::: Part 5 ::: Part 6
Part 7 ::: Part 8 ::: Part 9 ::: Part 10 ::: Part 11 ::: Part 12
Part 13 ::: Part 14 ::: Part 15 ::: Part 16 ::: Part 17 ::: Part 18