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But solemn is the silence of the silvery haze
That drinks away their voices in echoless repose,
And dreamily the evening has stilled the haunted braes,
And dreamier the gloaming grows.

And sinking one by one, like lark-notes from the sky When the falcon's shadow saileth across the



Are hushed the maiden's voices, as cowering down they lie

In the flutter of their sudden awe.

For, from the air above, and the grassy ground beneath, And from the mountain-ashes, and the old whitethorn between,

A power of faint enchantment doth through their beings breathe,

And they sink down together on the green.

Thus clasped and prostrate all, with their heads together bowed,

Soft o'er their bosoms beating-the only human sound

They hear the silky footsteps of the silent fairy crowd, Like a river in the air, gliding round.

Nor scream can any raise, nor prayer can any say, But wild, wild the terror of the speechless threeFor they feel fair Anna Grace drawn silently away, By whom they dare not look to see.

They feel their tresses twine with her parting locks of gold,

And the curls elastic falling, as her head withdraws, They feel her sliding arms from their trancèd arms unfold,

But they dare not look to see the cause:

For heavy on their senses the faint enchantment lies Through all that night of anguish and perilous


And neither fear nor wonder can ope their quivering eyes,

Or their limbs from the cold ground raise.

Till out of Night the Earth has rolled her dewy side, With every haunted mountain and streamy vale below;

When, as the mist dissolves in the yellow morning tide, The maidens' trance dissolveth so.

Then fly the ghastly three as swiftly as they may,

And tell their tale of sorrow to anxious friends in vain;

They pined away and died within the year and dayAnd ne'er was Anna Grace seen again.

(By permission of the Author.)



[John Home was born in Roxburghshire in 1724. He was educated for the Church, but in the rebellion of 1745, entered the Royal army, and was taken prisoner at the Battle of Falkirk. He contrived to escape, and was ordained minister of Athelstaneford, in East Lothian, 1750. His tragedy of "Douglas" was performed with great success in Edinburgh; but the fact of a clergyman writing a play at all so offended the presbytery, that he was com pelled to resign his living. He wrote four other plays, none of which attracted, and "A History of the Rebellion of 1745-6," which was also considered a failure. He died, aged 85, 1808.]


LORD RANDOLPH. I GLENALVON. I NORVAL. Glen. His port I love: he's in a proper mood [Aside, To chide the thunder, if at him it roared. Has Norval seen the troops?

Norv. The setting sun

With yellow radiance lightened all the vale,
And as the warriors moved, each polished helm,
Corslet or spear, glanced back his gilded beams.
The hill they climbed, and, halting at its top,
Of more than mortal size, towering they seemed
A host angelic, clad in burning arms.

Glen. Thou talk'st it well; no leader of our host,
In sounds more lofty, talks of glorious war.

Norv. If I should e'er acquire a leader's name
My speech will be less ardent. Novelty
Now prompts my tongue, and youthful admiration
Vents itself freely; since no part is mine
Of praise pertaining to the great in arms.

Glen. You wrong yourself, brave sir, your martial deeds

Have ranked you with the great. But mark me, Norval;
Lord Randolph's favour now exalts your youth
Above his veterans of famous service.

Let me, who know these soldiers, counsel you.
Give them all honour: seem not to command,
Else they will hardly brook your late-sprung power,
Which nor alliance props nor birth adorns.

Norv. Sir, I have been accustomed all my days To hear and speak the plain and simple truth; And though I have been told that there are men Who borrow friendship's tongue to speak their scorn, Yet in such language I am little skilled; Therefore I thank Glenalvon for his counsel, Although it sounded harshly. Why remind Me of my birth obscure? Why slur my power With such contemptuous terms?

Glen. I did not mean

To gall your pride, which now I see is great.
Norv. My pride!

Glen. Suppress it as you wish to prosper;
Your pride's excessive. Yet, for Randolph's sake,
I will not leave you to its rash direction.
If thus you swell, and frown at high-born men,
Will high-born men endure a shepherd's scorn?

Norv. A shepherd's scorn!
Glen. Yes, if you presume

To bend on soldiers those disdainful eyes
As if you took the measure of their minds,
And said in secret, You're no match for me,
What will become of you ?

Norv. Hast thou no fears for thy presumptuous self? Glen. Ha! dost thou threaten me?

Norv. Didst thou not hear?

Glen. Unwillingly I did; a nobler foe

Had not been questioned thus; but such as thee—
Norv. Whom dost thou think me?

Glen. Norval.

Norv. So I am

And who is Norval in Glenalvon's eyes?

Glen. A peasant's son, a wandering beggar-boy; At best no more, even if he speak the truth.

Norv. False as thou art, dost thou suspect my truth? Glen. Thy truth; thou'rt all a lie; and false as hell Is the vain-glorious tale thou told'st to Randolph.

Norv. If I were chained, unarmed, or bedrid old, Perhaps I should revile; but as I am, I have no tongue to rail. The humble Norval Is of a race who strive not but with deeds. Did I not fear to freeze thy shallow valour, And make thee sink too soon beneath my sword, I'd tell thee-what thou art. I know thee well.

Glen. Dost thou not know Glenalvon, born to command Ten thousand slaves like thee?

Norv. Villain, no more!

Draw and defend thy life. I did design
To have defied thee in another cause;

But Heaven accelerates its vengeance on thee.

Now for my own and Lady Randolph's wrongs.


· Lord Rand. Hold! I command you both! The man that stirs

Makes me his foe.

Norv. Another voice than thine,

That threat had vainly sounded, noble Randolph.
Glen. Hear him, my lord; he's wondrous con-

Mark the humility of shepherd Norval!
Norv. Now you may scoff in safety.
Lord Rand. Speak not thus,
Taunting each other, but unfold to me
The cause of quarrel; then I judge betwixt you.
Norv. Nay, my good lord, though I revere you much,
My cause I plead not, nor demand your judgment.
I blush to speak; and will not, cannot speak
The opprobrious words that I from him have borne.
To the liege lord of my dear native land
I owe a subject's homage; but even him
And his high arbitration I'd reject:
Within my bosom reigns another lord;
Honour, sole judge and umpire of itself.
If my free speech offend you, noble Randolph,
Revoke your favours, and let Norval go
Hence as he came, but not dishonoured!

Lord Rand. Thus far I'll mediate with impartial


The ancient foe of Caledonia's land

Now waves his banner o'er her frighted fields ;
Suspend your purpose till your country's arms
Repel the bold invader; then decide
The private quarrel.

Glen. I agree to this.

Norv. And I.

Glen. Norval,

Let not our variance mar the social hour,
Nor wrong the hospitality of Randolph,
Nor frowning anger, nor yet wrinkled hate
Shall stain my countenance. Smooth thou thy brow;
Nor let our strife disturb the gentle dame.

Norv. Think not so lightly, sir, of my resentment; When we contend again, our strife is mortal.

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