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popular writer ; we appear as we are." But let us proceed to view these contrasts. In the first place, without the influence of central principles, the natural bitter apprehensions of death, when only black despair whispers its approach, seem to be felt in all their force. Then are men cowards in regard to it, and when its image is not banished, sparing of their little souls, as the good are of their great ones prodigal. Then can observers say with Henry IV.,

“Ah! what a sign it is of evil life,

When death's approach is seen so terrible !” To banish the thought of it is found a poor remedy:

"A δείλ', ουδέ τι τοι θάνατος καταθύμιός έστιν,

ύς δή του σχεδόν έστι. . The next scene represents him who has tried that supposed specific only the more wretched :

πότμον γοόωσα, λιπούσαδροτητα και ήβην *. “ Lives dissolute, not fearing death, will prove deaths desperate, not hoping for life.”

O the cursed devil !
Which doth present us with all other sins
Thrice candied o'er,—despair, with gall and stibium,

Yet we carouse it off.” " How miserably," says Cæsar of Hiesterbach, “how horribly die usurers, misers, deceivers, proud men, robbers, murderers, litigious men, slaves of luxury, and others as vicious, I will show you by examples f.” It is not, we may premise, that all poor sinners die so. What end should we ourselves then, comrade, have to dread! But these observers take note of men who had no intermission of their sins, all whose life was a continued ill, whose thought was blackness, and nature but disease. Alas ! well might this old author be moved at these contrasts to what he had before shown ; for, as the poet says, addressing a worshipper of money who was a man of law,

“ The monk he hath a joyful end,

And well may welcome death like a friend,
When the crucifix close to his heart is prest,
And he piously crosses his arms on his breast,
And the brethren stand round him and sing him to rest,

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And tell him, as sure he believes, that anon
Receiving his crown, he shall sit on his throne,
And sing in the choir of the blest.
But a hopeless sorrow it strikes to the heart,
To think how men like thee depart-
Unloved and joyless was thy life,
Unlamented was thine end;
And neither in this world or the next

Hadst thou a single friend." These are the occasions when that fearful word “too late” is uttered with an accent and a look that freeze the blood of all present; then one hears replies like those of Philargus,

Pray you give me leave
To die as I have lived. I must not part with

My gold; it is my life; I am past cure.” There was a certain castle in the south of France called Castrum Malæmortis, the Castle of Baddeath *. To have merited the name it must have heard sad words of mysterious horror from desperate mortality. Poets have noted some of them, as those of Alphonso

“ Give me more air, air, more air! blow, blow!

Open, thou Eastern gate, and blow upon me!
Distil thy cold dews, 0 thou icy moon,
And rivers run through my afflicted spirit !
I am all fire, fire, fire! The raging Dog-star
Reigns in my blood! Oh, which way shall I turn me ?
Dig, dig, dig, till the springs fly up,
The cold, cold springs, that I may leap into 'em,
And bathe my scorch'd limbs in their purling pleasures !
Or shoot me up into the higher region,
Where treasures of delicious snow are nourish'd,

And banquets of sweet hail !" Or again, they represent before us those grim extorted confessions of a tyrant saying,

“ The terrors of a thousand nights made black

With pitchy tempests, and the moon's defect,
When she's affrighted with the howlings of
Crotonean wolves, and groans of dying mandrakes
Gather'd for charms; the screech-owl's fatal dirge,
And ghosts disturb’d by furies from their peace,

Are all within me.” The glass of his sins runs out thus : his time is come to curse, and rave, and die. It is certain, even from what history records, that there might have been many houses called by the same

• Archives des Bouches-du-Rhône, St. Sauveur.

dreadful name from beholding a succession of such spectacles,

Where the ballad of a bad life closes

With sighs and an alas !" Pierre Mathieu says of Queen Elizabeth, and her grief and last sickness, “On disoit que le chagrin venoit de la maladie mesme, et d'autres creurent que la maladie venoit du chagrin*." Thus did her life finish with infinite sorrow. After remaining many days on cushions spread on the floor, when urged by the lord admiral to go to bed, she angrily refused ; and then hinted at phantoms that had troubled her, adding, “ If he were in the habit of seeing such things in his bed as she did when in hers, he would not advise her to go there.” “ It is a fearful task,” says her recent biographer, " to trace her passage through the dark valley of the shadow of death.”

Such a fearful end
May teach some men, that bear too lofty crest,

Tho' they live happiest, yet they die not best." Mathieu Paris mentions instances : “ The Knight Lambert de Muleton,” he says, “who had obtained a privilege that he could not be excommunicated unless by an especial mandate from the pope, which was as much as to promise impunity, returning home one day proudly on his horse, felt sick on alighting, and throwing himself on his bed, died before they had time to take off his spurs. Similarly Ranulf the Breton, another king's favourite and extortioner, died suddenly while looking on at a game of dice after dinner. And in like manner Nicholas Damme ('please God,' adds the monk, 'that the name be not sig. nificative of what awaited him'), the counsellor of Earl Richard, and another spoliator, fell from his horse during the night, as he returned after an orgie, and expired vomiting the wine with which he was surfeited t." Again he says, “ This year, 1258, died William Heiron, viscount of Northumberland, the hammerer of the poor,

the persecutor of monks, and the most avaricious of After experiencing this temporal thirst, there were too many signs at his end that he was only departing to feel thirst of another kind.” But no more of this. Cæsar of Heisterbach, the Magnum Speculum, and other mediæval works, abound with records of this kind ; but what should be remarked with all attention is the fact that in the nineteenth century men of the same character die, we are told, in a manner so precisely similar, that these monastic observers seem to be describing what passes in our own time in London or Paris. Take, for example, the

nen.

• Hist. de Hen. IV. liv. vi.

of Ad ann. 1246,

death of Henry Effingstone, the man about town, as described in the Diary of a Late Physician: “Oh, my God!" exclaims this author, “if men about town could but see this hideous spectacle, surely it would palsy them in the pursuit of ruin, and scare them into the paths of virtue. It is not so much the physical as the mental horrors that are appalling. Doctor,' he said, “what a remarkable, nay, hideous dream I had last night. I thought a fiend came and took me to a gloomy belfry, and muttered these words, “ many stripes,” in my ear, and the huge bell tolled me into madness, for all the damned danced around me to the sound of it; ha! ha! There's something cursed odd in the coinci. dence, isn't there? How it would have frightened some!' Then on another day," says this author, " as I was going to sit in the arm-chair by the bedside, ‘Don't sit there,' he groaned, •for a hideous being sat in that chair all night long; take it away-burn it.' A few days later I thought his mind had changed into something perfectly diabolical. “Hal’he exclaimed, • seven's the main! won't bate a pound of the price of the horse ; look at his forelegs! The girl, what's become of her ? drowned ? Fire, fire! see the devils talking about my damnation! Come, take me off! And you, George, why are you ladling, fire upon me? I'm flooded with fire! Now for the dance! Ha! and you there! what, all three of you damned before me? Let in the snakes ; let the large serpents in ; I love them! Ha! ha! ha! I won't die! No, damn you all! no, damn me!' He gasped, and made a noise as if he was choked. We looked: yes, he was gone. The nurse had fainted.” The monastic authors, we may infer, had no need to exaggerate. We may believe their accounts. We may depend upon it there is nothing less likely to make us despise Catholicism than the witnessing of the end of one so exactly bad, that if the book of all men's lives lay open to his view, he would meet no sin unpractised by himself. There is no variety even in the phenomenon. Age after age it is always the same spectacle ; it is the dreadful sight of one who, as the poet says,

“Fainting, despairs; despairing, yields his breath.” These things are full of horror, full of pity. It is a good moral, though made plain by history.

Turning; then, from these fearful observations, let us notice those who under the central influence contemplate their depar. ture. Here all is different. With each of these

“ Mild was the slow necessity of death;

The tranquil spirit failed beneath its grasp,
Without a groan, almost without a fear,
Calm as a voyager to some distant land,
And full of wonder, full of hope, as he."

It must be an ineffable consolation to men when they find in death a confirmation of the principles which had been their guide, or at least the object of their veneration in life, and which all through it had made them less than their thoughts, more than themselves. At the moment when the flames reached the Maid of Orleans, she cried, “Oui, mes voix étaient de Dieu, mes voix ne m'ont pas trompée !” “ All doubts,” says the historian, “ceased then ; for she accepted death as the promised deliverance.”. Twenty years after, the two venerable monks who assisted her made this deposition : “ We heard her,” said they, “ from the midst of the fire, invoking the saints, her archangel; she repeated the Saviour's name. At last, letting fall her head, she uttered with a great cry, 'Jesus !' and expired.”. Few, without being greatly moved, can ever observe or hear described the death of persons who had in life been centrally or Catholically trained and influenced. “ Charles X. showed," says Chateaubriand, " in his last hours, calmness and equanimity. When he heard of the danger that menaced him, he only said, 'Je ne croyois pas que cette maladie tournât si court.” When Louis X®VI. de. parted for the scaffold, the officer on duty refused to receive his testament, alleging that he had not time, and that he was only bound to conduct him to the spot. The king replied, “ C'est juste.” We can understand," adds the historian, “why the Bourbons hold to a religion which renders them so noble in their last moments. This race knows admirably well how to die ; to be sure, it has been learning the art for more than 800 years." What a death again was that of the Emperor Charles V. in the convent of St. Yuste! The clock had just struck two in the morning. The emperor interrupted the Chaplain Villalva, who was holding forth in a pious strain. “ The time is come,” he said ; “ bring me the candle and the crucifix." The one was a taper from Montserrat, the other a beautiful crucifix which had been taken from the dead hand of his wife at Toledo. Taking one in each hand he silently contemplated the figure of the Saviour, and then pressed it to his bosom. Those who stood nearest heard him say quickly, as if replying to a call, voy, Señor–Now, Lord, I go.” Then, with a voice loud enough to be heard outside the room, he cried, “ Ay, Jesus!” and expired.

Quixada said that he had died in a manner worthy of the greatest man that ever had lived or ever would live in the world *. Take the example of one whom some would have us suppose to have only believed always in the truth of the Catholic religion, while his conduct was often in contradiction to its spirit. Yet, even on such a supposition, this conformity of will and intention receiving confirmation in the last hours of life, is seen to confer so great a dignity, that the most

* Stirling's Charles V.

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