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Here oft my steps hath Contemplation led; And here, alone, in solemn reverie,
Under this hoary elm, with lichens red,
I have thought how years and generations flee,
When all that revel now in pride and power,
...But man was made for bustle and for strife;
TAS Consists in agitation, and his ways
Are through the battling storm blasts; to erase
Cold were the heart, and bigoted indeed,
A doctrine so debasing in the breast?
We who are dust and ashes, who have need, Of mercy, not of judgment; and, at best,
Are vanity to him, with whom our fate must rest...
Since thus so feeble, happy 'tis for us,
That the All-Seeing is our judge alone!* We walk in darkness-but not always thus'; The veil shall be withdrawn, and man be shown Mysterious laws of nature now unknown : Yes! what is shrouded from our feeble sight, Or now seems but a chaos overgrown With marvels, hidden in the womb of night, * (2016/3, Shall burst upon our view, clear, beautiful, and bright.
Oh! who that gazes on the lights of life,
Man in his might, and woman in her bloom,
Burn in the light of hope, or shrink with conscious fear.
Then in resign'd submission let us bow
Before the Providence that cares for all:
'Tis thine, oh God, to take or to bestow,
To raise the meek, or bid the mighty fall;
Forbid the degradation! No-it shall
Burst from earth's bonds, like daystar from the sea, When from the rising sun the shades of darkness flee!
THE AGA OF THE JANIZARIES.
ter, and the pendulum. An Italian
liant theory? An Italian!
ITALY has probably produced more of that distinctive quality called genius, than any other nation of Europe. What she was in the days of antiquity we scarcely know, farther than she was mistress of the world. Greece seems then to have borne away the prize of genius. But, before the question can be decided, we must remember that ancient Greece was exactly in the circumstances which are most favourable to the expansion of the intellect, while ancient Rome, from the time when she was relieved from the pressure of perpetual war, was exactly in the circumstances most unfavourable to that expansion;—that Greece was a group of republics, which even, when under the dominion of Rome, This universal supremacy in things were less enslaved than tranquilli- of the intellect is genius. All was zed, while Italy was a solid despo- original; for genius is originality. tism, shaken only by civil wars, All was powerful, practical, and which at once riveted the fetters of made to impress its character upon the despotism, impoverished the no- the living generation, and the genebles, and corrupted the people. rations to come. For the highest But on the revival of Europe from genius is the most practical genius the ruin and the sleep of the dark ages, Italy was is no trifler; it may be fastidious; it placed under the may love to dream a world of its original circumstances of Greece: own; it may look with scorn on the the land was a group of republics; feeble and tardy progress by which all was sudden opulence, wild liber humbler powers attain the height ty, and fiery enthusiasm. She became which it reaches with a wave of its first the merchant, then the warrior, wing; but when it once comes to of Europe; then the poet, then the its task, and treads the ground, its painter, of the world. From that pressure is felt by the vigour of its period she was the universal school tread. It moves direct to its pur. of the arts, those higher arts which pose, its purpose is worthy of its of mankind, government, political force, are its essence, and it leaves knowledge, law, theology, poetry, the evidence of its noble interposi which soothe or decorate human kingdoms, perhaps in their renovawhicless than those graceful arts tion, perhaps in the overthrow of life; her music, sculpture, painting, tion, but, in all its acts, leaves the the drama, the dance, were unrival- proof of faculties given with the ob
novating the strength, of the general
To come to the immediate purpose of the narrative. In the war of the Russians and Imperialists on the Ottoman Porte, which ended with the peace of Oczakow, Dec. 1791,
In to look upon it as exhausted, Italy human mind. grown old, and the world began threw a new stream of life into it, and it began its career triumphs. An Italian revived geoagain for new graphy by the discovery of a new hemisphere, and revived astronomy by giving us the telescope, and throw it was remarked that the fortune ing open the world. An Italian awoke us to a of the starry which had so signally accompanied new knowledge of the mechanism of parts of the campaign, as signally the Imperialist armies in the earlier nature by the air-pump, the barome- deserted them towards its close; and
that Turkey, which had been saved by little short of miracle from the first incursion of the Austrian army, concluded by not merely repelling those arms, but placing herself in a higher rank than she had held before. The Osmanlis of course attributed this singular change to the protection of their prophet; but those who were unable to lift their eyes to the paradise where he sits on sofas of eternal green velvet, drinking pearl and ruby sherbet, and surrounded by Adalisques surpassing all the Circassians extant, found a sufficient reason in the good fortune which had raised Hassan Caramata from the rank of a camel-driver in the camp, to the high and responsible situation of Aga of the Janizaries.
There was but little known of Hassan in his former career, as a matter of course, for Turkey has not yet had among the invaders of its quiet any amateurs in biography, collectors of" secret memoirs," or compilers of autographs. It was taken for granted that he was the son of somebody, and that was enough; but it was seen that he was a capital soldier, and that was more satisfactory to the general interest than if he had his veins incarnadined by the blood of all the Osmans. He had, besides, got a character, which effectually precluded all applications for his history from his own lips. He was not merely one of the best handlers of the scimitar in the dominions of the faith, but one of the most unhesitating in its use..
was known to have cut from the skull to the chin, at a single sweep, one of his own captains, who had ventured to growl at an order in the field; and his habits were of a keen and vindictive vengeance, which above all other things turns the edge of curiosity.
It is perfectly well known that there was no man in the dominions of the Sultan, whom that Sultan so thoroughly feared; yet when Hassan was but a captain of the Delhis of the_body-guard, he had established so decided a character for bringing things to a speedy issue with the scimitar or the carbine, that he received plumes, diamonds, and embroidered bridles and saddles without number, under the pretext of his adroitness in riding or javelin-throw
ing, but, as was well known, for his being able to strike off the neck of a bull at a blow, for his being the most unfailing shot in the service, and from, what was more to the purpose, the universal knowledge that an angry glance from the Sultan himself, would have been merely the preliminary to a trial of speed between them, whether the Sultan's Icoglans should first have Hassan's head in a sack, or Hassan should have sent an ounce ball through the heart of his angry master. The question was easily settled, for the Sultan must act by proxy, which, however sure, is slow, while Hassan would act in person, which is at once sure and swift. The consequence was, that this fiercest of men and most uncourtly of courtiers was suffered to take his way, treating Sultan and slave with nearly equal want of ceremony, and still, to the universal astonishment, advancing in military rank. It was notorious, too, that he openly scoffed at all the accredited modes of rising in the body-guard of any nation under the sun. He neither made a party among the clerks of the Divan, by promising them double allowances when he should be Vizier, nor bribed the Sultanas, nor told fables of his superior officers, nor made a lower salam to the Vizier, the Mufti, or the Capudan Pasha, than to his own Korseruldeer. On the contrary, but a short time before the fight of Tchesme, he had a furious altercation with the Capudan, in the presence of the Sultan himself. He tore the beard and struck off the turban of that fortunate slave and miserable admiral, pronounced that, as he had been a slipper-maker in his youth, he was fit for nothing but to make slippers to the end of his days, struck him with the sheath of his scimitar in the face, and declared that as surely as he took the command of the Turkish fleet, so surely would he either leave it on a sandbank, or in flames, or in the enemy's hands;— three predictions which were all verified in one fact. For all the world now knows that the Capudan actually first stranded his fleet, saw it strike to the Russian flag, and then saw it burn to cinders on the shores of the memorable bay of Tchesme. The whole assemblage of Pashas round the head of the Moslemans were in
dignant at this breach of decorum, every thing but cannon, bayonets, but silence is the virtue of courts, and men. The black beards (the Auseven in Turkey. They waited for the trians) will trample them, the yellow Sultan's indignation to speak. But it beards (the Russians) will trample said nothing. And Hassan Caramata them, The Vizier will leave every quietly stalked through the midst of thing behind but his brains, and the a hundred and fifty diamond-hilted troops every thing but their hearts." daggers, and ten thousand carved The Sultan, with a familiarity exand filagreed muskets, all thirsting tended to no other of his officers, for his blood. Yet neither dagger nor enquired how it was possible to con-v trigger moved. All eyes were fixed vey either, after leaving the man beon the Sultan, and his were fixed on hind. Simply," said Hassan, "bethe towering height and undaunted cause no man can lose that which stride of the Delhi as he moved from the never possessed." The answer the hall. In half an hour after, every would have cost the Vizier himself Pasha in Constantinople saw, to their fifty heads if he had them; but Hasutter, astonishment, Hassan Cara-san seemed guarded by a spell. The mata, the accursed, the ferocious, result of his last retort was an ingalloping along the valley of thestant commission of Aga of the JaLimes, in command of the Sultan's nizaries, singh silt to a 10 moliomie escort, shooting off the necks of The prophecy turned out true. bottles as usual with his infallible The Vizier was beaten on all occaballs, and throwing the javelin with sions; the Janizaries were beaten una force that made competition des til the sound of an Austrian trumpet perate, and drew loud applause even sent them flying to all points of the from the gravity of the Commander compass. The Russians were raising of the Faithful himself. This was de- their batteries against Bender; Cocisive. The Capudan Pasha put to bourg and his chasseurs were carrybe content with the loss of his ing off Pashas daily from the subheard and turban, provided it were urbs of Belgrade; the war was like a not followed by the loss of the head war of sportsmen against the woodvid to which pigeons of Walachia. When suddenwent back to their governments, to ly the whole scene changed. Patroles kind of magic by which the mightiest of cavalry disappearing as if they had consult the soothsayers on the new cut off, convoys taken, detached corps of the mighty allowed the meanest sunk into the earth, excited the utof the mean to tear beards and tur- most astonishment in the combined bans in their presence. But the Vi- camp. The soldiers began to think the zier instantly sent for the Delhi, ghouls and vampires had made a sorthe grace of his manners, and the fighting with things of the air or the complimented him orientally upon tie upon them, and that they were respect for the best of masters, which grave. Cobourg proposed to retreat distinguished him among the child- from this perilous ground, but was ren of the Prophet, invested him with attacked on that night, and, after a a scimitar belt of honour, gave him loss of some thousand infantry, his hand the commission of chief of Russian general wrote for reinforcehis favourite charger, and gave into ven on the road to Transylvania. The
Joseph and Catherine had com- They marched, but were never heard
they could. Joseph longed for Belte
es of th
VOL. XXXI. NO. CXC.
asleep and awake, on his sofa, and with as much dexterity at one time as at another. But Caramata was in the field. The Delhi had brought some corps of his favourite troops with him, and, what was better, he had brought the Delhi spirit with his troops. Before a month was past, every Spahi was as eager for a trial of his scimitar on the Austrian helmets as if he had ate nothing but opium from the beginning of the campaign. The Janizaries brightened their kettles anew, and the sight of the horsetail was soon a terror to the platoons of the yellow beards. Hassan was still the same gloomy, solitary, and incomprehensible being; more sarcastic than ever, and more ferocious in quarters, in camp, and in the field. He had but one punishment for all offences-the edge of the scimitar. "We come to the field to slaughter men, not to save cowards," was his expression, when he ordered a troop of his Delhis to ride in upon a regiment of Janizaries that had suffered itself to be surprised. "You reproach us Turks with cruelty," said he one day to an Austrian general, who came to propose a cessation of arms," but the only difference between us is, that you are hypocrites, and we are not. You call yourselves soldiers, and you murder all that you can; we call ourselves murderers, and we act up to the profession."
Hassan at least acted up to his word; for on the very night which saw the Austrian return to his Prince with a fierce message of defiance, the whole of the imperial foragers were cut off, and the regiments of hussars which guarded them sent to the right about with such expedition, that they left three-fourths of their number under the hoofs of the Spahis' horses.
Winter began to blow, freeze, and sleet from the tops of the Carpathians; and the allies, fully satisfied with having been beaten for three months without intermission, and already harassed almost to death, rejoiced in the sight of the first sheets of snow on the hills, as an omen of winter quarters. But the Aga of the Janizaries told his troops that now was the time to smite both black beard
and yellow-that cowards required warm weather to put blood into their veins, but that brave men could fight in all weathers. He grew more adventurous than ever, dashed with his Spahis at every thing that appeared within a horizon of a hundred miles, broke into the detached camps of the allied forces, took cannon, ammunition, and waggons; and, before a month was out, sent a pile of standards to Constantinople large enough to hang the ceiling of the Santa Sophia, and beards and mustaches enough to stuff all the footstools of the Seraglio. Joseph and Catherine were astonished. Alarm followed, and then wisdom. They sent a proposal for an armistice to the Vizier. The Vizier for once laid aside his pipe, and prepared to forward the envoy to the Sultan. Caramata came in during the conference, ordered the envoy to be seized, gave him into the hands of his Delhis, and turned him out of the camp, with a solemn declaration, that the next envoy should have his choice of the bastinado, or the mouth of the largest howitzer in the Turkish lines. The Vizier said, “ Allah il Allah," resumed his pipe, and said no more. The envoy was escorted to the enemy's camp, and on that night Cobourg found his tents on fire about his ears, and was forced to make his way as well as he could towards the Barmat. Within three nights after, the redoubtable Suwarrow was forced to fight his way through ten thousand gallant horse, who stripped him of every gun and fragment of baggage. Bender and Belgrade were now both effectually cleared. The Sultan sent his Aga the Cheleuk* of honour; the Vizier was ordered to Constantinople, there to cure his asthma by the fresh air of the Bosphorus, and Hassan Caramata was appointed in his room, first counsellor to the king of kings, commander of the armies of the faithful, and vanquisher of all the unbelievers and Kafirs under the sun.
The campaign began again: Leopold had succeeded Joseph, and he resolved to distinguish himself at three hundred miles' distance by the cheap heroism of a cabinet warrior. He sent an autograph letter to Cobourg, commanding him to signalize
• Diamond plume.