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Lived on his sunny farm, and Evangeline governed his
household. Many a youth, as he knelt in the church and opened
his missal, Fixed his eyes upon her as the saint of his deepest
devotion ; Happy was he who might touch her hand or the hem of
her garment ! Many a suitor came to her door, by the darkness be
friended, And, as he knocked, and waited to hear the sound of her
footsteps, Knew not which beat the louder, his heart or the knocker
of iron; Or, at the joyous feast of the patron saint of the village, Bolder grew, and pressed her hand in the dance as he
whispered Hurried words of love, that seemed a part of the music. But, among all who came, young Gabriel only was wel
come; Gabriel Lajeunesse, the son of Basil the blacksmith, Who was a mighty man in the village, and honored of
For, since the birth of time, throughout all ages and
nations, Has the craft of the smith been held in repute by the
people. Basil was Benedict's friend. Their children from earliest
1 missal, mass-book.
8 Lajeunesse. Accent on the 2 which beat the louder, etc. last syllable. Note this fine touch.
4 craft, manual art, trade.
Grew up together as brother and sister; and Father
Felician, Priest and pedagogue both in the village, had taught them
their letters Out of the self-same book, with the hymns of the church
and the plain-song." But when the hymn was sung, and the daily lesson com
pleted, Swiftly they hurried away to the forge of Basil the black
smith. There at the door they stood, with wondering eyes to
behold him Take in his leathern lap the hoof of the horse as a play
thing, Nailing the shoe in its place; while near him the tire ?
of the cart-wheel Lay like a fiery snake, coiled round in a circle of cinders. Oft on autumnal eves, when without in the gathering
darkness Bursting with light seemed the smithy, through every
cranny and crevice, Warm by the forge within they watched the laboring
bellows, And as its panting ceased, and the sparks expired in the
ashes, Merrily laughed, and said they were nuns goings into
the chapel." Oft on sledges in winter, as swift as the swoop of the eagle,
1 plain-song, a monotonous reci 3 nuns going, etc.,
--a French tative of the church collects, or short saying. prayers.
4 chapel. See Webster for inter2
tire, a band of iron use to bind esting derivation. the fellies of wheels.
swoop: allied to sweep.
Down o'er the hill-side bounding, they glided away o'er
the meadow. Oft in the barns they climbed to the populous nests on
the rafters, Seeking with eager eyes that wondrous stone which the
swallow Brings from the shore of the sea to restore the sight of
its fledglings: Lucky was he who found that stone in the nest of the
swallow! Thus passed a few swift years, and they no longer were
children. He was a valiant? youth, and his face, like the face of the
morning, Gladdened the earth with its light, and ripened thought
into action. She was a woman now, with the heart and hopes of a
woman. “Sunshine of Saint Eulalie was she called; for that was
the sunshine Which, as the farmers believed, would load their orchards
with apples; She, too, would bring to her husband's house delight and
abundance, Filling it full of love, and the ruddy faces of children.
1 that wondrous stone, etc. It | 2 valiant (from Latin valerc, to was one of the Norman-French su- be strong), literally vigorous of perstitions, that, if one of a swal- body, and hence courageous, heroic. low's young is blind, the mother 3 Saint Eulalie. St. Eulalie's seeks on the shore of the ocean a day is the 12th of February. An certain little stone, with which she old Norman proverb runs thus: restores its sight. He who found “If the sun smiles on Saint Eulasuch a stone in a swallow's nest lie's day, there will be plenty of was accounted fortunate indeed, as apples, and cider enough.” This it was a remedy for many ills. explains the allusion that follows.
In-doors, warm by the wide-mouthed fireplace, idly the
farmer Sat in his elbow-chair, and watched how the flames and
the smoke-wreaths Struggled together like foes ? in a burning city. Behind
him, Nodding and mocking along the wall, with gestures fan
tastic, Darted his own huge shadow, and vanished away into
darkness. Faces, clumsily carved in oak, on the back of his arm-chair Laughed in the flickering light, and the pewter plates
on the dresser Caught and reflected the flame, as shields of armies the
sunshine. Fragments of song the old man sang, and carols? of
Christmas, Such as at home, in the olden time, his fathers before him Sang in their Norman orchards and bright Burgundian
vineyards. Close at her father's side was the gentle Evangeline seated, Spinning flax for the loom, that stood in the corner behind
her. Silent a while were its treadles," at rest was its diligent
shuttle, While the monotonous drone of the wheel, like the drone
of a bagpipe,
1 like foes. What is the figure formed from Burgundy, a province of speech?
of southern France. 2 carols (Latin chorus), literally a 4 treadles (allied to tread), the dance song, and hence a song of joy. parts of a loom moved by the
8 Burgundian, adjective feet.
Followed the old man's song, and united the fragments
together. As in a church, when the chant of the choir at intervals
ceases, Footfalls are heard in the aisles, or words of the priest
at the altar, So, in each pause of the song, with measured motion the
Thus as they sat, there were footsteps heard, and, sud
denly lifted, Sounded the wooden latch, and the door swung back on
its hinges. Benedict knew by the hobnailed ? shoes it was Basil the
blacksmith, And by her beating heart : Evangeline knew who was with
him. “Welcome!” the farmer exclaimed, as their footsteps
paused on the threshold, “Welcome, Basil, my friend! Come take thy place on the
settle 4 Close by the chimney-side, which is always empty without
thee;6 Take from the shelf overhead thy pipe and the box of
1 measured ...
clicked. Notes in the second person singular the alliterations.
(“thee," "thy" “thou,” etc.), is 2 hobnailed, the soles strength- explained by the fact that the use ened with strong-headed nails. of this form is among the French
3 her beating heart. A fine an indication of endearment. To touch of nature.
tutoyer (to thee-thou) a person, one 4 settle, a high-backed bench. must be an intimate friend. (It is 5 thee. The use of the pronoun | also used towards inferiors.)