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But soon, as by his dauntless might

The darksome wood he clear'd,
Delicious scenes, in verdure bright,

Of groves and lawns appear'dj
While streams, from purest springs, were seen
Mcand'ring through the velvet green.

Soft from each shade the dulcet sound

Of warblers charm'd the ear,
And ev'ry flow'r blow'd wild around,

That decks the various year;
Sir Albert stopp'd, amaz'd, confounded,
Thus by enchanting scenes surrounded.

Perfumes that scented ev'ry breeze

Soon through his senses stole,
And, charm'd, he felt soft languor seize

Each impulse of his soul.
His steed he left, and listless laid
His limbs beneath a myrtle's shade.

A tree, enrich'd with golden fruit,

Hung pendant o'er his head,
And sudden blossoms seem'd to shoot

By some soft magic sped;
The knight beheld, with wishing eyes,
And tried a while to reach the prize.

But as he lay, his arm's extent

He feebly stretch'd in vain;
The envied fruit, though lowly bent,

Was much too high to gain:
At length his sword he drew, in haste,
And lopp'd the bough he wish'd to taste.

But wonder seiz'd the startled knight,

And horror-struck he stood, When, from the wound, to chill his sight,

Distill'd fresh streams of blood. Nor less affright his bosom stirr'd, When from the tree a voice he heard—

"' Ah, me! Sir Knight," it, sighing, said,

"Your ever-conq'ring sword
The throbbing, vital stream has shed

Of her you once ador'd.
By arts transform'd, your Elda view,
Who dies, well pleas'd to die for you."

The madning phrensy of despair,
Now burn'd Sir Albert's mind;

And now he tore his clothes, his hair,
The wounded tree to bind:

Yet still fast flow'd the purple tide,

And fainter still the victim sigh'd.

The fatal weapon then he rais'd,
His own life's blood to take,

When, looking up, he saw, atnaz'd,
His friend, the silver snake.

She twin'd around the bleeding wood,

And thus soon stay'd the flowing blood.

"Sir Knight," she said, "in this sad hour

Arganta's charms prevail;
And I, now robb'd of half my power,
Must not her deeds assail;

But, if my grateful aid you prize,

Attend and act as I adyiae.

The form of this much-injur'd fair,

I'll keep from further harm,
But still no pow'r on earth will dare

Dissolve the potent charm.
Nor can the arm, your vent'rous sword
Cut off, be to its place restor'd,
Till, by your valour, you obtain,
A cord to bind it on again,
Made from two locks, as white as snow,
That on Arganta's forehead grow.
Then boldly haste to yonder grove,

Where many dangers wait,
But think that she you boasf to love

From you expects her fate;
Arganta now reposing lies,
And if she 'scape, your Elda dies."

Fir'd with this dawning hope, the knight

Across the valley flew; But threat'ning clouds obscur'd the light,

As tow'rds the wood he drew; Yet nought disturb'd his dauntless breast,

And onwards to the task he press'd.

Now, sudden walls of burning fire

Rose up to stop his way,
Where horrid fiends and monsters dire

Appear'd in grim array;
Fearless he march'd to scale the wall,
When fiends and monsters vanish'd all.

Then, sudden through the lurid air,
Thick darkness spread around,

Save where the lightning's sulphurous glare
Ran frequent o'er the ground;

Yet, still undaunted, on he went,

Unalter'd in his fix'd intent.

But now the kind of peril chang'd,

The night was turn'd to day,
And trees and shrubs, in order rang'd,

Appear'd to point the way;
Then, having pass'd the wood's close shade,
He saw Arganta's bow'r display'd.

Of vines and myrtles interlac'd,

The fragrant arbour grew;
While woodbines gay and jess'mines chaste

Alternate met the view.
But see! within on beds of roses,
A brilliant female form reposes.

Idalia's ripen'd charms she wears,

And those her robe conceals,
Each fascinating grace declares,

Surpass what it reveals.
Soft slumber seals her radiant eyes,
And sunk in graceful ease she lies.

Lost with surprise, amaz'd, confus'd,

In wonder stood the knight,
And long had stood, but, as he mus'd,

His qnick enquiring sight,
Observ'd upon her forehead grow
Two curling locks, as white as snow.


Then, fierce, he drew his polish'd blade,

And at one vengeful stroke,
Cut off the head that sleeping laid,

Which thus the magic broke:
The headless form, in death now shrunk,
Appear'd Arganta's wither'd trunk.

The blooming Elda sudden stood

Close by Sir Albert's side,
Who, wild with rapture, once more view'd

Restor'd, his destin'd bride.
The snake, from penance now releas'd,
A fairy, thus the pair address'd:

"Hail! spotless maiden, well-belov'd

By one of high renown,
You both have by past trials prov'd,

That fortune's darkest frown
The good with firmness will endure,
For virtue's recompence is sure."


"Glittering, precious stone!

What a great omnipotence hast thou,

When gold and titles buy thee? Dryden.

....during my residence in Astrakhan, I became acquainted with the heirs of the late Grigori Safarov Shai'rass, the Armenian, who sold the celebrated large diamond, which is now set in the imperial sceptre of Russia. The history of this diamond, which holds so distinguished a place among those of the first water,

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