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Down the dark future, through long generations,
The echoing sounds grow fainter and then cease;
I hear once more the voice of Christ say, “ Peace ! ”
The blast of War's great organ shakes the skies!
The holy melodies of love arise.
In the valley of the Pegnitz, where across broad meadow-lands
Quaint old town of toil and traffic, quaint old town of art and song, Memories haunt thy pointed gables, like the rooks that round them throng:
Memories of the Middle Ages, when the emperors, rough and bold,
And thy brave and thrifty burghers boasted, in their uncouth rhyme,
In the court-yard of the castle, bound with many an iron band,
On the square the oriel window, where in old heroic days
Everywhere I see around me rise the wondrous world of Art:
And above cathedral doorways saints and bishops carved in stone,
In the church of sainted Sebald sleeps enshrined his holy dust,
In the church of sainted Lawrence stands a pix of sculpture rare,'
Thanking God, whose boundless wisdom makes the flowers of poesy bloom
Not thy Councils, not thy Kaisers, win for thee the world's regard ;
An old popular proverb of the town runs thus :-
“ Nuremberg's hand
(2.) Sat the poet Melchior singing Kaiser Marimilian's praise. Melchior Pfinzing was one of the most celebrated German poets of the sixteenth century. The hero of his Teuerdank was the reigning emperor, Maximilian ; and the poem was to the Germans of that day what the Orlando Furioso was to the Italians. Maximilian is mentioned before, in the Belfry of Bruges. See page 181.
(3.) In the church of sainted Sebald sleeps enshrined his holy dust. The tomb of Saint Sebald, in the church which bears his name, is one of the richest works of art in Nuremberg. It is of bronze, and was cast by Peter Vischer and his sons, who laboured upon it thirteen years. It is adorned with nearly one hundred figures, among which those of the Twelve Apostles are conspicuous for size and beauty.
(4.) In the church of sainted Lawrence stands a pix of sculpture rare. This pix, or tabernacle for the vessels of the sacrament, is by the hand of Adam Kraft. It is an exquisite piece of sculpture in white stone, and rises to the height of sixty-four feet. It stands in the choir, whose richly-painted windows cover it with varied colours.
(5.) Wisest of the Twelve Wise Masters. The Twelve Wise Masters was the title of the original corporation of the Mastersingers. Hans Sachs, the cobbler of Nuremberg, though not one of the original Twelve, was the most renowned of the Mastersingers, as well as the most voluminous. He flourished in the sixteenth century; and left behind him thirty-four folio volumes of manuscript, containing two hundred and eight plays, one thousand and seven hundred comic tales, and between four and five thousand lyric poems.
(6.) As in Adam Puschman's song. Adam Puschman, in his poem on the death of Hans Sachs, describes him as he appeared in a vision:
“An old man,
Dans les moments de la vie où la réflexion devient plus calme et plus profonde, où l'intérêt et l'avarice parlent moins haut que la raison, dans les instants de chagrin domestique, de maladie, et de péril de mort, les nobles se repentirent de posséder des serfs, comme d'une chose peu agréable à Dieu, qui avait créé tous les hommes à son image.-THIERRY, Conquête de l'Angleterre.
Loud, without, the tempest thundered,
And the castle-turret shook.
In this fight was Death the gainer,
Written in the Doomsday Book.
By his bed a monk was seated,
From the missal on his knee ;
And, amid the tempest pealing,
Rang for the Nativity.
In the hall, the serf and vassal
Sang the minstrels and the waits.
And so loud these Saxon gleemen
Knocking at the castle-gates.
Till at length the lays they chaunted Reached the chamber terror-haunted, Where the monk, with accents holy,
Whispered at the baron's ear.
Tears upon his eyelids glistened,
Turned his weary head to hear.