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THE BELFRY OF BRUGES.

(4.) I beheld the gentle Mary. Marie de Valois, Duchess of Burgundy, was left by the death of her father, Charles-le-Téméraire, at the age of twenty, the richest heiress of Europe. She came to Bruges, as Countess of Flanders, in 1477, and in the same year was married by proxy to the Archduke Maximilian. According to the custom of the time, the Duke of Bavaria, Maximilian's substitute, slept with the princess. They were both in complete dress, separated by a naked sword, and attended by four armed guards. Marie was adored by her subjects for her gentleness and her many other virtues.

Maximilian was son of the Emperor Frederick the Third, and is the same person mentioned afterwards in the poem of Nuremberg as the Kaiser Maximilian, and the hero of Pfinzing's poem of Teuerdank. Having been imprisoned by the revolted burghers of Bruges, they refused to release him, till he consented to kneel in the public square, and to swear on the Holy Evangelists and the body of Saint Donatas, that he would not take vengeance upon them for their rebellion.

(5.) The bloody battle of the Spurs of Gold. This battle, the most memorable in Flemish history, was fought under the walls of Courtray, on the 11th of July, 1302, between the French and the Flemings, the former commanded by Robert, Comte d'Artois, and the latter by Guillaume de Juliers, and Jean, Comte de Namur. The French army was completely routed, with a loss of twenty thousand infantry and seven thousand cavalry; among whom were sixty-three princes, dukes and counts, seven hundred lords-banneret, and eleven hundred noblemen. The flower of the French nobility perished on that day, to which history has given the name of the Journée des Eperons d'Or, from the great number of golden spurs found on the field of battle. Seven hundred of them were hung up as a trophy in the church of Notre Dame de Courtray; and, as the cavaliers of that day wore but a single spur each, these vouched to God for the violent and bloody death of seven hundred of his creatures.

(6.) Saw the fight at Minnewater. When the inhabitants of Bruges were digging a canal at Minnewater, to bring the waters of the Lys from Deynze to their city, they were attacked and routed by the citizens of Ghent, whose commerce would have been much injured by the canal. They were led by Jean Lyons, captain of a military company at Ghent, called the Chaperons Blancs. He had great sway over the turbulent populace, who, in those prosperous times of the city, gained an easy livelihood by labouring two or three days in the week, and had the remaining four or five to devote to public affairs. The fight at Minnewater was followed by open rebellion against Louis de Maele, the Count of Flanders and Protector of Bruges. His superb Château of Wondelghem was pillaged and burnt; and the insurgents forced the gates of Bruges, and entered in triumph, with Lyons mounted at their head. A few days afterwards he died suddenly, perhaps by poison.

Meanwhile the insurgents received a check at the village of Nevèle ; and two hundred of them perished in the church, which was burned by the Count's orders. One of the chiefs, Jean de Lannoy, took refuge in the belfry. From the summit of the tower he held forth his purse filled with gold, and begged for deliverance. It was in vain. His enemies cried from below to save him. self as best he might; and, half suffocated with smoke and flame, he threw himself from the tower and perished at their feet. Peace was soon afterwards established, and the Count retired to faithful Bruges.

(7.) The Golden Dragon's nest. The Golden Dragon, taken from the Church of St. Sophia, at Constantinople, in one of the Crusades, and placed on the belfry of Bruges, was afterwards transported to Ghent by Philip van Artevelde, and still adorns the belfry of that city.

The inscription on the alarm-bell at Ghent is, “ Mynen naem is Roland ; als ik klep is er brand, and als ik luy is er rictorie in het land.“My name is Roland; when I toll there is fire, and when I ring there is victory in the land.”

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Tuis is the place. Stand still, my steed,

Let me review the scene,
And summon from the shadowy Past

The forms that once have been.

The Past and Present here unite

Beneath Time’s flowing tide, Like footprints hidden by a brook, But seen on either side.

A GLEAM OF SUNSHINE.

Here runs the highway to the town ;

There the green lane descends, Through which I walked to church with thee,

0 gentlest of my friends!

The shadow of the linden-trees

Lay moving on the grass ;
Between them and the moving boughs,

A shadow, thou didst pass.

Thy dress was like the lilies,

And thy heart as pure as they : One of God's holy messengers

Did walk with me that day.

I saw the branches of the trees

Bend down thy touch to meet, The clover-blossoms in the grass

Rise up to kiss thy feet.

“Sleep, sleep to-day, tormenting carer,

Of earth and folly born !" Solemnly sang the village choir

On that sweet Sabbath morn.

Through the closed blinds the golden sun

Poured in a dusty beam, Like the celestial ladder seen

By Jacob in his dream.

And ever and anon, the wind,

Sweet-scented with the hay, Turned o'er the hymn-book’s fluttering leaves

That on the window lay.

Long was the good man's sermon,

Yet it seemed not so to me;
For he spake of Ruth the beautiful,

And still I thought of thee.

Long was the prayer he uttered,

Yet it seemed not so to me;
For in my heart I prayed with him,

And still I thought of thee.

But now, alas ! the place seems changed ;

Thou art no longer here :
Part of the sunshine of the scene

With thee did disappear.

Though thoughts, deep-rooted in my heart,

Like pine-trees dark and high,
Subdue the light of noon, and breathe

A low and ceaseless sigh ;

This memory brightens o'er the past,

As when the sun, concealed
Behind some cloud that near us hangs,

Shines on a distant field.

THE ARSENAL AT SPRINGFIELD.

This is the Arsenal. From floor to ceiling,

Like a huge organ, rise the burnished arms; But from their silent pipes no anthem pealing

Startles the villages with strange alarms.

Ah! what a sound will rise, how wild and dreary,

When the death-angel touches those swift keys ! What loud lament and dismal Miserere

Will mingle with their awful symphonies !

THE ARSENAL AT SPRINGFIELD.

I hear even now the infinite fierce chorus,

The cries of agony, the endless groan,
Which, through the ages that have gone before us,

In long reverberations reach our own.

On helm and harness rings the Saxon hammer,

Through Cimbric forest roars the Norseman's song, And loud, amid the universal clamor,

O’er distant deserts sounds the Tartar gong.

I hear the Florentine, who from his palace

Wheels out his battle-bell with dreadful din, And Aztec priests upon their teocallis

Beat the wild war-drums made of serpent's skin;

The tumult of each sacked and burning village;

The shout that every prayer for mercy drowns; The soldiers' revels in the midst of pillage;

The wail of famine in beleaguered towns;

The bursting shell, the gateway wrenched asunder,

The rattling musketry, the clashing blade; And ever and anon, in tones of thunder,

The diapason of the cannonade.

Is it, О man, with such discordant noises,

With such accursed instruments as these,
Thou drownest Nature's sweet and kindly voices,

And jarrest the celestial harmonies ?

Were half the power, that fills the world with terror,

Were half the wealth, bestowed on camps and courts, Given to redeem the human mind from error,

There were no need for arsenals nor forts:

The warrior's name would be a name abhorred!

And every nation, that should lift again Its hand against a brother, on its forehead

Would wear forevermore the curse of Cain!

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