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the door (which shut with a spring falling in with his enemies. He latch) on the drinking party within ; therefore determined on disguising and then, having by great resolution himself as a poor miner, and taking and strength disarmed and put to with him only one attendant as a guide flight the sentinels, he presented bim on the road he was to go, leaving his self at the window of the room where own faithful black behind him to avoid the rest were enclosed, and threaten- suspicion. In this manner he reached ed with an axe to chop off the head of in safety the boundary of the province the first person who offered to escape of Salta. But here, observing a by that exit. Then, still keeping scouting party of fifty men at a diswatch over the now drunken party tance, Leita hid his money and papers within the room, he whistled for his in a thicket hard by ; which he had black slave, (who, it appeared, had scarcely accomplished when the party only been sent out of the way to con came up, and began to make illusory ceal himself with the view of assist- inquiries, which he at first refused to ing his master's project,) Leita or answer, for fear of causing suspicion dered him to prepare the two best by his Arragon accent. At last, behorses of the party and bring them to ing compelled by their ill usage and him, and to unsaddle and turn loose threats to speak, he described himself all the rest. This being done accord- as a poor miner in search of work. ing to his desire, both master and man But, as he had feared, his accent exmounted, and were soon at a great cited further suspicions, and they prodistance on the road across the Andes ceeded to beat him and his guide, till to Coquiin bo in Chile. They rode the latter at last confessed who Leita day and night; but by the time they was, though he could not disclose the had reached the central ridge of the object of his travelling that road. But Andes, their horses sunk under them another blow or two soon induced from fatigue ; and on seeing their him to confess where his master had pursuers approaching in the distance, hidden his papers and money; and they abandoned their horses, and con- these disclosed all that they wished tinued their flight on foot, making for to know. They then immediately the craigs and precipices where their conducted their prisoner to the city of pursuers could not possibly follow. Tucuman ; where he was subjected They were now safe for the present; to a brief and summary trial, and was and in a few days Leita made his ap- immediately condemned to death for pearance before the Spanish Royalist, being in correspondence with the eneGeneral Osorio, representing who he mies of the Patria. Soon after his was, and the circumstances under condenination, a priest, named Jose which he had left Rioja ; and stating Augustin Colombres, came to confess that if the general would supply him Leita ; and, with the view of extractwith a certain number of men he ing from him the knowledge of where would engage speedily to reduce the he had hidden his supposed treasures, whole province to the dominion of the 'he promised to procure a grant of his Spanish monarchy. Osorio could not life on condition of such disclosure. supply Leita with the required means, Leita was easily induced, under his but was induced, by bis representa- desperate circumstances, to fall into tions, to provide him with letters of this snare ; and having made the dorecommendation to Pezuela, the vice- sired confession to the wily priest, he roy of Peru, who, he said, would be was almost immediately shot in the likely to further his view in the pro- Plaza of the town. Two years after posed project. But to deliver these this, the above-named priest made a letters, it was necessary that Leita journey to the Escaleras, for the purshould travel through a great tract of pose, as is supposed, of taking away country in the provinces of Tucuman the buried treasure, the knowledge of and Salta, at the imminent risk of which he bad extracted from its owner;
and thus concluded the first modern leagues in length, and that not more mining enterprise of the Famatina. than about one-fourth of that extent
This history was related to me by had been, in any way, explored for a person who was himself intimately mining purposes, and even that portion connected with the mines then work- bad been examined very imperfectly. ing in the mountain, and who went Indeed, so rude was the method then on to tell me a few further anecdotes employed of working the mines, and relating to them. He said that hav- so inexhaustible are the riches supposing by dint of hard industry amassed ed to be which they contain, that, at a little capital, he determined to em- the time referred to, the miners used bark it in the mining speculations which to turn away with contempt from any the success of Leita and Echavaria spot which did not contain ore capable had brought somewhat more into fash- of returning 640 ounces of silver for ion; and that having exhausted his own every cajon (about 4,800lb.); and savings of two thousand dollars, he many of the mines then in work proborrowed 2000 more, with which he duced an average of four times that was at length successful, and speedily proportion. Moreover, so defective afterwards accumulated a capital of was the system of working the mines, 10,000 dollars; but that disgusted it was perfectly well understood that by the vexatious obstacles thrown in the workmen stole at least half the his way by the new government, he produce. Yet, notwithstanding all had retired to Cordova with his little these drawbacks, the profits were unfortune, and embarked it in trade. derstood to be immense, as compared Until this period the mines of the with the capital employed for the purFainatina had been looked upon as pose. The wages paid to the workopen to the enterprises of any body men, at the period now referred to, who chose to engage in working thein. were as follows :—to the working miBut when Rivadavia came into power ner (barretero) twelve dollars per in Buenos Ayres, he determined on month, and as much beef, bread, and turning their wealth to a national ac- firewood as he chose to consume ; to count. He therefore sent to the go- the apire, or laborer, who carried up vernor of Rioja for a statement of the the ore on his back from the lodes, general state of the mines, and their eight dollars per month, and the same adaptation to the purposes he had in provisions ; the overseer (majordomo) view, of making them subservient to was generally paid from twenty-five the interests of the state. The con to thirty dollars per month, and he sequence was that a great company generally contrived to appropriate as was formed at Buenos Ayres under inuch more.
The mountain was, as the auspices of Messrs. Hullet, Bro- it were, parcelled out into nine difthers, and Co. consisting partly of ferent divisions ; of which the richest English and partly of native iner and most productive was said to be chants ; and to this company the right that portion called the Cerro Mejicaof working all the mines in the pro- no, and situated just beneath the vince of Rioja was conceded, for a snowy ridge.
The other portions, certain period, and under settled re- bearing the best repute for riches, strictions.
were the Ainpallao, the Cerro Negro, It may be well to close this sketch and the Cerro Tigre. In the Cerro by a brief notice of the present, or at Mejicano alone there are eight rich least the very recent, condition of the mines. The particular mine which is mines at Famatina. Some years ago, reputed to be the richest is called the the number of working miners, em mine of Santo Domingo. It produces ployed on the mountain, was rather abundance of virgin silver, and was, less than four hundred, a compara- at that time, estimated at the value of tively insignificant number, when it is 200,000 dollars. The metal of nearly considered that the mountain is twenty all the mines is silver ; but there were
three or four which produced gold. just receiving the rays of the sun. At These, however, though more healthy this period of the day, indeed, it is to work than the silver mines, were usually enveloped, for the most part, not looked upon as nearly so profitable. in light mists. But as these clear
Finally, it may be mentioned, that away before the increasing power of the mountain of Famatina presents, the sun as it rises, the various effects from the village of Chilecito, a most of light and shade are most curious beautiful and noble appearance, espe- and beautiful; and when, at last, the cially in the early morning, when its whole is enveloped in the full blaze of enormous snow-crowned ridges are day, the effect is truly magnificent.
BY MRS. HEMANS.
Alas! the kind, the playful, and the gay,
Come home there is a sorrowing breath Where finds it you, our wandering ones?
With all your boy bood's glee
Or on the lone mid-sea ?
Or where dark rivers foam ?
Back, ye beloved ! come home! O ye beloved, come home! the hour Come with the leaves and winds of spring, Of many a greeting tone,
And swift birds o'er the main! The time of hearth-light and of song Our love is grown too sorrowtil, Returns—and ye are gone!
Bring us its youth again! And darkly, heavily it falls
Bring the glad tones to music backOn the forsaken room,
-Sull, still your home is fair ; Burdening the heart with tenderness, The spirit of your sunny life That deepens 'midst the gloom.
Alone is wanting there!
[A London Magazine for April contains PERHAPS the country that, more than under this head a critical notice of the Ja- any other, engages the attention of nuary number of the North American Re- mankind in our day, is the United view. The writer's opinion of the merits States of America. We do not say of the first article in that number is con that the people of this country are, tained in the following extract. He consi- either on account of their character or ders the article on Austin's Life of Elbridge their actual achievements, the most Gerry the most powerful one in the num- interesting on the face of the globe; ber, and that on Irving's Life of Columbus to but in their accidental position they be“ very ably and gracefully written.” In unquestionably are. If we thought, the review of “ Duke Bernhard of Saxe. as many do, that they had already Weimar's Travels in North America," completed their grand experiment in
we have,” he says, “not a little of the government and social regeneration, sensitive vanity of the national character." we should scarcely perhaps say tbis ; “Upon the whole," he adds, in conclusion, but regarding them, as we do, as still “it is impossible not to regard this periodic on their trial before the world and in cal as exceedingly creditable to the rising the midst of their voyage onward to a literature of America."]
mighty fulfilment, or a still mightier
failure, we cannot but feel them to be thought, as if they really took themplaced as no other nation is for draw- selves to belong to a different species ing to them the gaze of a liberal and from the poor devil of a poet, or other philosophical curiosity. The subject man of genius, whom they had got of the hopes and fears that may be caged and were stirring up with the felt with regard to them is, in its ge- long pole for their own diversion and neral scope, greatly too wide a one that of their readers. Any expresfor us even to enter upon here ; but sion of reverence or humble affection we may possibly take a future oppor- for the noble nature of him whom tunity of hazarding a few remarks they had tlfus summoned into their upon it, when we can give it our un- presence they never for a moment divided attention. In the mean time dreamed of giving way to. If the we have a very few words to say on lion had peculiarly majestic gait, or a sample of the popular literature of richly flowing inane, they pointed it our transatlantic brethren, which now out to be sure; but it was principally lies before us—" The North American that they might show their own critiReview,” which we noticed, with other cal cleverness in detecting the feature, American periodicals, in our Number much in the same manner for September last. The last num- might point out in a garden with your ber that has appeared of this work is walking-stick a fine specimen of a the sixty-second, dated January in the grub or a caterpillar. These were present year.
certainly the golden days of critics, if The first article in the present num- not of criticism. Our reviewers were ber, and perhaps the one of great- then the throned sovereigns of the est pretension which it contains, pur- world of literature, at least in their ports to be a review of Mr. Hunt's own estimation; and so imposing for late work on Lord Byron, which, a time is mere pretension, that they however, the writer dismisses in a were actually looked up to and dreadsingle introductory paragraph, devot- ed as such by no small a proportion of ing the remainder of his space to a the rest of the public. We have, dissertation on the Decline of Poetry, however, as we have said, consideraof which he is pleased to say Mr. bly reformed all this now; the pert Hunt's name and writings, by a very scribblers of our reviews and magaeasy and natural association, remind zines have been taught their proper him. This article is not an unfavora- place; and how infinitely their place ble specimen of that tranchant style of is below that, of many at least, of criticism which a few years ago used those on whom they were wont to lato be so fashionable among ourselves, vish so liberally their insolent ridicule but which, we are happy to think, has or more offensive courtesies. The of late begun rapidly to give place to several causes to which we are ina more genial manner of estimating debted for this revolution we have no both the beauties and the faults, the time at present to inquire into; but powers and the weaknesses, of gifted we should despise ourselves if we minds. In the times to which we al- could be withheld by any feelings, as lude our critics used to write, even to other matters, from acknowledging when in their best humor, and while how much of it we owe to the examdescanting on the works of the greatest ple of one celebrated periodicalauthors of the age, much in the style “ Blackwood's Magazine”'_which has, in which the keepers of menageries from the very first, listed a voice of are wont to expatiate to the company powerful eloquence against the in exhibiting their wild beasts, mix- wretched assumption to which we ing, with the most lordly flippancy have been adverting, and most ably imaginable, their tones and accents of vindicated that rightful supremacy of authority with those of condescending genius which it had become so much patronage, almost, one would have the fashion of our mere men of talent
30 ATHENEUM, vol. 2, 3d series.
to forget. On the other side of the way.” We can only say that we disAtlantic, however, if we may judge by sent from our critic here, and also in the disquisition before us, reviewers many of his other opinions ; as for exhave scarcely yet learned to think that ample, when he affirms “ that there can there is any one greater than them- be no doubt that poetry has been losing selves, or in speaking of whom it be- the public favor, (his leading propocomes them to use any other language sition,) and that the poets of the prethan such as a schoolmaster would sent century have contributed to the employ in catechising his pupils, or a disrespect into which their art has falldraper in passing sentence on the qua- en;"and that “the only thing approachlity of a web of broadcloth. This is ing to a standard of taste is the sentiment a smartly-enough-written article ; but of the greatest proportion of men;" the tone of it is really from beginning and that “ Byron's smaller pieces are to end, to our taste, insufferably of those of his writings, most likely to be fensive. We do not greatly complain admired in future times ;" and that of the suminary style in which Mr. “ next to Byron must place Hunt's literary merits are dismissed ; Campbell ;” and that “ Wordsworth,” although, without any wish to deny or the poet who has, in fact, revolutionpalliate the affectations and other lit- ized our poetry, “has had less influtlenesses which are to be found in bis ence on the public mind than any disworks, we hold much of his poetry, tinguished writer of the age;" and that and a good deal of his prose, in con “ Coleridge has been fortunate enough siderably higher estimation than this to maintain the reputation of a great critic, because he is evidently men- genius merely on the strength of his tioned merely for the purpose of in- Ancient Mariner;" and multitudes of troducing another subject which alone other assertions of a similar order there is any attempt to discuss seri- which meet us in every page of the ously and at length. But our lively article. Superficial, however, and as scribe is, in truth, quite as much at we cannot help thinking, positively his ease among the greatest names of erroneous as is much of the philosothe age, and of all ages, as he is phy of the disquisition, it is, as we among the least; and discourses about have already said, cleverly written, Byron, and Wordsworth, and Cole- and contains a good deal of very feliridge, and “the good old way of Mil- citous expression. We were struck ton and Pope,” almost flip- particularly with the passage in which pantly as about Mr. Hunt himself. Campbell is described, in allusion to By-the-bye, what may be this same the Essay on English Poetry, in the
way of Milton and Pope,” which first volume of his Specimens, as barwe find so repeatedly recommended ing been employed in “ building the as the only model of excellence in older prophets in a beautiful criticism,” these pages ?
Does this writer really and with the other place where it is imagine these two poets to he of the said of Byron, among the recollections sarne school ? or to have any remark- of Rome, that " he seems like a guide able characteristics in common? es- walking mysteriously through the city, cept, indeed, that they neither of them and when he comes to some striking belong to the present age, which is, fragment of antiquity, turning upon it to be sure, a most admirable reason the strong light of his dark lantern." for describing them as writing in “ Both these figures are worthy of poetry.
BEAUTY. Crowds talk of beauty : yes ! of the mere Its portrait drawn in accents glowing, word !
true, 'Tis all they know of it. Alas ! how sew As only Taste and Feeling, deeply stirred Guess its high attributes !--or e'er have By that which touches them, have power heard