University of Virginia Library


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The dreams of Agnes, on the night after her conversation
with the monk and her singular momentary interview
with the cavalier, were a strange mixture of images, indicating
the peculiarities of her education and habits of daily

She dreamed that she was sitting alone in the moonlight,
and heard some one rustling in the distant foliage of the
orange-groves, and from them came a young man dressed in
white of a dazzling clearness like sunlight; large pearly
wings fell from his shoulders and seemed to shimmer with
a phosphoric radiance; his forehead was broad and grave,
and above it floated a thin, tremulous tongue of flame; his
eyes had that deep, mysterious gravity which is so well expressed
in all the Florentine paintings of celestial beings:
and yet, singularly enough, this white-robed, glorified form
seemed to have the features and lineaments of the mysterious
cavalier of the evening before, — the same deep, mournful,
dark eyes, only that in them the light of earthly pride
had given place to the calm, strong gravity of an assured
peace, — the same broad forehead, — the same delicately
chiselled features, but elevated and etherealized, glowing
with a kind of interior ecstasy. He seemed to move from
the shadow of the orange-trees with a backward floating of
his lustrous garments, as if borne on a cloud just along the
surface of the ground; and in his hand he held the lily-spray,


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all radiant with a silvery, living light, just as the
monk had suggested to her a divine flower might be. Agnes
seemed to herself to hold her breath and marvel with
a secret awe, and, as often happens in dreams, she wondered
to herself, — “Was this stranger, then, indeed, not even
mortal, not even a king's brother, but an angel? — How
strange,” she said to herself, “that I should never have seen
it in his eyes!” Nearer and nearer the vision drew, and
touched her forehead with the lily, which seemed dewy and
icy cool; and with the contact it seemed to her that a delicious
tranquillity, a calm ecstasy, possessed her soul, and the
words were impressed in her mind, as if spoken in her ear,
“The Lord hath sealed thee for his own!” — and then,
with the wild fantasy of dreams, she saw the cavalier in his
wonted form and garments, just as he had kneeled to her
the night before, and he said, “Oh, Agnes! Agnes! little
lamb of Christ, love me and lead me!” — and in her
sleep it seemed to her that her heart stirred and throbbed
with a strange, new movement in answer to those
sad, pleading eyes, and thereafter her dream became more

The sea was beginning now to brighten with the reflection
of the coming dawn in the sky, and the flickering fire of Vesuvius
was waxing sickly and pale; and while all the high
points of rocks were turning of a rosy purple, in the weird
depths of the gorge were yet the unbroken shadows and
stillness of night. But at the earliest peep of dawn the
monk had risen, and now, as he paced up and down the
little garden, his morning hymn mingled with Agnes's
dreams, — words strong with all the nerve of the old Latin,
which, when they were written, had scarcely ceased to be
the spoken tongue of Italy.


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“Splendor paternæ gloriæ,
De luce lucem proferens,
Lux lucis et fons luminis,
Dies diem illuminans!
“Votis vocemus et Patrem,
Patrem potentis gratiæ,
Patrem perennis gloriæ:
Culpam releget lubricam!
“Confirmet actus strenuos,
Dentes retundat invidi,
Casus secundet asperos,
Donet gerendi gratiam!
“Christus nobis sit cibus,
Potusque noster sit fides:
Læti bibamus sobriam
Ebrietatem spiritus!
“Lætus dies hic transeat,
Pudor sit ut diluculum,
Fides velut meridies,
Crepusculum mens nesciat!”[1]

The hymn in every word well expressed the character
and habitual pose of mind of the singer, whose views of


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earthly matters were as different from the views of ordinary
working mortals as those of a bird, as he flits and perches
and sings, must be from those of the four-footed ox who
plods. The “sobriam ebrietatem spiritus” was with him first
constitutional, as a child of sunny skies, and then cultivated
by every employment and duty of the religious and artistic
career to which from childhood he had devoted himself. If
perfect, unalloyed happiness has ever existed in this weary,
work-day world of ours, it has been in the bosoms of some
of those old religious artists of the Middle Ages, whose
thoughts grew and flowered in prayerful shadows, bursting
into thousands of quaint and fanciful blossoms on the pages
of missal and breviary. In them the fine life of color, form,
and symmetry, which is the gift of the Italian, formed a rich
stock on which to graft the true vine of religious faith, and
rare and fervid were the blossoms.

For it must be remarked in justice of the Christian religion,
that the Italian people never rose to the honors of originality
in the beautiful arts till inspired by Christianity. The
Art of ancient Rome was a second-hand copy of the original
and airy Greek, — often clever, but never vivid and self-originating.
It is to the religious Art of the Middle Ages,
to the Umbrian and Florentine schools particularly, that we
look for the peculiar and characteristic flowering of the


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Italian mind. When the old Greek Art revived again in
modern Europe, though at first it seemed to add richness
and grace to this peculiar development, it smothered and
killed it at last, as some brilliant tropical parasite exhausts
the life of the tree it seems at first to adorn. Raphael and
Michel Angelo mark both the perfected splendor and the
commenced decline of original Italian Art; and just in proportion
as their ideas grew less Christian and more Greek
did the peculiar vividness and intense flavor of Italian nationality
pass away from them. They became again like
the ancient Romans, gigantic imitators and clever copyists,
instead of inspired kings and priests of a national development.

The tones of the monk's morning hymn awakened both
Agnes and Elsie, and the latter was on the alert instantly.

“Bless my soul!” she said, “brother Antonio has a marvellous
power of lungs; he is at it the first thing in the
morning. It always used to be so; when he was a boy, he
would wake me up before daylight singing.”

“He is happy, like the birds,” said Agnes, “because he
flies near heaven.”

“Like enough: he was always a pious boy; his prayers
and his pencil were ever uppermost: but he was a poor hand
at work: he could draw you an olive-tree on paper; but set
him to dress it, and any fool would have done better.”

The morning rites of devotion and the simple repast being
over, Elsie prepared to go to her business. It had occurred
to her that the visit of her brother was an admirable pretext
for withdrawing Agnes from the scene of her daily traffic,
and of course, as she fondly supposed, keeping her from the
sight of the suspected admirer.

Neither Agnes nor the monk had disturbed her serenity


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by recounting the adventure of the evening before. Agnes
had been silent from the habitual reserve which a difference
of nature ever placed between her and her grandmother, —
a difference which made confidence on her side an utter
impossibility. There are natures which ever must be silent
to other natures, because there is no common language
between them. In the same house, at the same board, sharing
the same pillow even, are those forever strangers and
foreigners, whose whole stock of intercourse is limited to a
few brief phrases on the commonest material wants of life,
and who, as soon as they try to go farther, have no words
that are mutually understood.

“Agnes,” said her grandmother, “I shall not need you at
the stand to-day. There is that new flax to be spun, and
you may keep company with your uncle. I 'll warrant me,
you 'll be glad enough of that!”

“Certainly I shall,” said Agnes, cheerfully. “Uncle's
comings are my holidays.”

“I will show you somewhat further on my Breviary,” said
the monk. “Praised be God, many new ideas sprang up in
my mind last night, and seemed to shoot forth in blossoms.
Even my dreams have often been made fruitful in this divine

“Many a good thought comes in dreams,” said Elsie;
“but, for my part, I work too hard and sleep too sound to
get much that way.”

“Well, brother,” said Elsie, after breakfast, “you must
look well after Agnes to-day; for there be plenty of wolves
go round, hunting these little lambs.”

“Have no fear, sister,” said the monk, tranquilly; “the
angels have her in charge. If our eyes were only clear-sighted,
we should see that Christ's little ones are never


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“All that is fine talk, brother; but I never found that the
angels attended to any of my affairs, unless I looked after
them pretty sharp myself; and as for girls, the dear Lord
knows they need a legion apiece to look after them. What
with roystering fellows and smooth-tongued gallants, and
with silly, empty-headed hussies like that Giulietta, one has
much ado to keep the best of them straight. Agnes is one
of the best, too, — a well-brought up, pious, obedient girl,
and industrious as a bee. Happy is the husband who gets
her. I would I knew a man good enough for her.”

This conversation took place while Agnes was in the garden
picking oranges and lemons, and filling the basket which
her grandmother was to take to the town. The silver ripple
of a hymn that she was singing came through the open
door; it was part of a sacred ballad in honor of Saint
Agnes: —

“Bring me no pearls to bind my hair,
No sparkling jewels bring to me!
Dearer by far the blood-red rose
That speaks of Him who died for me.
“Ah! vanish every earthly love,
All earthly dreams forgotten be!
My heart is gone beyond the stars,
To live with Him who died for me.”

“Hear you now, sister,” said the monk, “how the Lord
keeps the door of this maiden's heart? There is no fear of
her; and I much doubt, sister, whether you would do well to
interfere with the evident call this child hath to devote herself
wholly to the Lord.”

“Oh, you talk, brother Antonio, who never had a child in
your life, and don't know how a mother's heart warms towards
her children and her children's children! The saints,


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as I said, must be reasonable, and ought n't to be putting
vocations into the head of an old woman's only staff and
stay; and if they ought n't to, why, then, they won't. Agnes
is a pious child, and loves her prayers and hymns; and so
she will love her husband, one of these days, as an honest
woman should.”

“But you know, sister, that the highest seats in Paradise
are reserved for the virgins who follow the Lamb.”

“Maybe so,” said Elsie, stiffly; “but the lower seats are
good enough for Agnes and me. For my part, I would
rather have a little comfort as I go along, and put up with
less in Paradise, (may our dear Lady bring us safely there!)
say I.”

So saying, Elsie raised the large, square basket of golden
fruit to her head, and turned her stately figure towards the
scene of her daily labors.

The monk seated himself on the garden-wall, with his
portfolio by his side, and seemed busily sketching and
retouching some of his ideas. Agnes wound some silvery-white
flax round her distaff, and seated herself near him
under an orange-tree; and while her small fingers were
twisting the flax, her large, thoughtful eyes were wandering
off on the deep blue sea, pondering over and over the
strange events of the day before, and the dreams of the

“Dear child,” said the monk, “have you thought more of
what I said to you?”

A deep blush suffused her cheek as she answered, —

“Yes, uncle; and I had a strange dream last night.”

“A dream, my little heart? Come, then, and tell it to its
uncle. Dreams are the hushing of the bodily senses, that
the eyes of the Spirit may open.”


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“Well, then,” said Agnes, “I dreamed that I sat pondering
as I did last evening in the moonlight, and that an angel
came forth from the trees” —

“Indeed!” said the monk, looking up with interest; “what
form had he?”

“He was a young man, in dazzling white raiment, and his
eyes were deep as eternity; and over his forehead was a
silver flame, and he bore a lily-stalk in his hand, which was
like what you told of, with light in itself.”

“That must have been the holy Gabriel,” said the monk,
“the angel that came to our blessed Mother. Did he say

“Yes, he touched my forehead with the lily, and a sort of
cool rest and peace went all through me, and he said, `The
Lord hath sealed thee for his own!'”

“Even so,” said the monk, looking up, and crossing himself
devoutly, “by this token I know that my prayers are

“But, dear uncle,” said Agnes, hesitating and blushing
painfully, “there was one singular thing about my dream, —
this holy angel had yet a strange likeness to the young man
that came here last night, so that I could not but marvel
at it.”

“It may be that the holy angel took on him in part this
likeness to show how glorious a redeemed soul might become,
that you might be encouraged to pray. The holy Saint
Monica thus saw the blessed Augustine standing clothed in
white among the angels while he was yet a worldling and
unbeliever, and thereby received the grace to continue her
prayers for thirty years, till she saw him a holy bishop.
This is a sure sign that this young man, whoever he
may be, shall attain Paradise through your prayers. Tell


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me, dear little heart, is this the first angel thou hast

“I never dreamed of them before. I have dreamed of
our Lady, and Saint Agnes, and Saint Catharine of Siena;
and sometimes it seemed that they sat a long time by my
bed, and sometimes it seemed that they took me with them
away to some beautiful place where the air was full of
music, and sometimes they filled my hands with such lovely
flowers that when I waked I was ready to weep that they
could no more be found. Why, dear uncle, do you see
angels often?”

“Not often, dear child, but sometimes a little glimpse.
But you should see the pictures of our holy Father Angelico,
to whom the angels appeared constantly; for so blessed
was the life he lived, that it was more in heaven than on
earth. He would never cumber his mind with the things
of this world, and would not paint for money, nor for prince's
favor; nor would he take places of power and trust in the
Church, or else, so great was his piety, they had made a
bishop of him; but he kept ever aloof and walked in the
shade. He used to say, `They that would do Christ's work
must walk with Christ.' His pictures of angels are indeed
wonderful, and their robes are of all dazzling colors, like
the rainbow. It is most surely believed among us that he
painted to show forth what he saw in heavenly visions.”

“Ah!” said Agnes, “how I wish I could see some of
these things!”

“You may well say so, dear child. There is one picture
of Paradise painted on gold, and there you may see our
Lord in the midst of the heavens crowning his blessed
Mother, and all the saints and angels surrounding; and
the colors are so bright that they seem like the sunset


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clouds, — golden, and rosy, and purple, and amethystine,
and green like the new, tender leaves of spring: for, you
see, the angels are the Lord's flowers and birds that shine
and sing to gladden his Paradise, and there is nothing bright
on earth that is comparable to them, — so said the blessed
Angelico, who saw them. And what seems worthy of note
about them is their marvellous lightness, that they seem to
float as naturally as the clouds do, and their garments have
a divine grace of motion like vapor that curls and wavers in
the sun. Their faces, too, are most wonderful; for they
seem so full of purity and majesty, and withal humble, with
an inexpressible sweetness; for, beyond all others it was
given to the holy Angelico to paint the immortal beauty of
the soul.”

“It must be a great blessing and favor for you, dear uncle,
to see all these things,” said Agnes; “I am never tired of
hearing you tell of them.”

“There is one little picture,” said the monk, “wherein he
hath painted the death of our dear Lady; and surely no
mortal could ever conceive anything like her sweet dying
face, so faint and weak and tender that each man sees his
own mother dying there, yet so holy that one feels that it
can be no other than the mother of our Lord; and around
her stand the disciples mourning; but above is our blessed
Lord himself, who receives the parting spirit, as a tender
new-born babe, into his bosom: for so the holy painters represented
the death of saints, as of a birth in which each soul
became a little child of heaven.”

“How great grace must come from such pictures!” said
Agnes. “It seems to me that the making of such holy
things is one of the most blessed of good works. — Dear
uncle,” she said, after a pause, “they say that this deep


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gorge is haunted by evil spirits, who often waylay and bewilder
the unwary, especially in the hours of darkness.”

“I should not wonder in the least,” said the monk; “for
you must know, child, that our beautiful Italy was of old so
completely given up and gone over to idolatry that even her
very soil casts up fragments of temples and stones that have
been polluted. Especially around these shores there is
scarcely a spot that hath not been violated in all times by
vilenesses and impurities such as the Apostle saith it is a
shame even to speak of. These very waters cast up marbles
and fragments of colored mosaics from the halls which were
polluted with devil-worship and abominable revellings; so
that, as the Gospel saith that the evil spirits cast out by
Christ walk through waste places, so do they cling to these
fragments of their old estate.”

“Well, uncle, I have longed to consecrate the gorge to
Christ by having a shrine there, where I might keep a
lamp burning.”

“It is a most pious thought, child.”

“And so, dear uncle, I thought that you would undertake
the work. There is one Pietro hereabout who is a skilful
worker in stone, and was a playfellow of mine, — though
of late grandmamma has forbidden me to talk with him, —
and I think he would execute it under your direction.”

“Indeed, my little heart, it shall be done,” said the monk,
cheerfully; “and I will engage to paint a fair picture of our
Lady to be within; and I think it would be a good thought
to have a pinnacle on the outside, where should stand a
statue of Saint Michael with his sword. Saint Michael
is a brave and wonderful angel, and all the devils and vile
spirits are afraid of him. I will set about the devices


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And cheerily the good monk began to intone a verse of
an old hymn, —

“Sub tutela Michaelis,
Pax in terra, pax in cœlis.”[2]

In such talk and work the day passed away to Agnes;
but we will not say that she did not often fall into deep musings
on the mysterious visitor of the night before. Often
while the good monk was busy at his drawing, the distaff
would droop over her knee and her large dark eyes become
intently fixed on the ground, as if she were pondering some
absorbing subject.

Little could her literal, hard-working grandmother, or her
artistic, simple-minded uncle, or the dreamy Mother Theresa,
or her austere confessor, know of the strange forcing
process which they were all together uniting to carry on in
the mind of this sensitive young girl. Absolutely secluded
by her grandmother's watchful care from any actual knowledge
and experience of real life, she had no practical tests
by which to correct the dreams of that inner world in which
she delighted to live and move, and which was peopled with
martyrs, saints, and angels, whose deeds were possible or
probable only in the most exalted regions of devout poetry.

So she gave her heart at once and without reserve to an
enthusiastic desire for the salvation of the stranger, whom
Heaven, she believed, had directed to seek her intercessions;
and when the spindle drooped from her hand, and
her eyes became fixed on vacancy, she found herself wondering
who he might really be, and longing to know yet
a little more of him.

Towards the latter part of the afternoon, a hasty messenger


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came to summon her uncle to administer the last
rites to a man who had just fallen from a building, and
who, it was feared, might breathe his last unshriven.

“Dear daughter, I must hasten and carry Christ to
this poor sinner,” said the monk, hastily putting all his
sketches and pencils into her lap. “Have a care of these
till I return, — that is my good little one!”

Agnes carefully arranged the sketches and put them into
the book, and then, kneeling before the shrine, began prayers
for the soul of the dying man.

She prayed long and fervently, and so absorbed did she
become, that she neither saw nor heard anything that passed
around her.

It was, therefore, with a start of surprise, as she rose from
prayer, that she saw the cavalier sitting on one end of the
marble sarcophagus, with an air so composed and melancholy
that he might have been taken for one of the marble
knights that sometimes are found on tombs.

“You are surprised to see me, dear Agnes,” he said, with
a calm, slow utterance, like a man who has assumed a position
he means fully to justify; “but I have watched day
and night, ever since I saw you, to find one moment to
speak with you alone.”

“My Lord,” said Agnes, “I humbly wait your pleasure.
Anything that a poor maiden may rightly do I will endeavor,
in all loving duty.”

“Whom do you take me for, Agnes, that you speak
thus?” said the cavalier, smiling sadly.

“Are you not the brother of our gracious King?” said

“No, dear maiden; and if the kind promise you lately
made me is founded on this mistake, it may be retracted.”


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“No, my Lord,” said Agnes, — “though I now know not
who you are, yet if in any strait or need you seek such poor
prayers as mine, God forbid I should refuse them!”

“I am, indeed, in strait and need, Agnes; the sun does
not shine on a more desolate man than I am, — one more
utterly alone in the world; there is no one left to love me.
Agnes, can you not love me a little? — let it be ever so
little, it shall content me.”

It was the first time that words of this purport had ever
been addressed to Agnes; but they were said so simply, so
sadly, so tenderly, that they somehow seemed to her the
most natural and proper things in the world to be said;
and this poor handsome knight, who looked so earnest and
sorrowful, — how could she help answering, “Yes?” From
her cradle she had always loved everybody and everything,
and why should an exception be made in behalf of a very
handsome, very strong, yet very gentle and submissive
human being, who came and knocked so humbly at the door
of her heart? Neither Mary nor the saints had taught her
to be hard-hearted.

“Yes, my Lord,” she said, “you may believe that I will
love and pray for you; but now, you must leave me, and not
come here any more, — because grandmamma would not be
willing that I should talk with you, and it would be wrong
to disobey her, she is so very good to me.”

“But, dear Agnes,” began the cavalier, approaching her,
“I have many things to say to you, — I have much to tell

“But I know grandmamma would not be willing,” said
Agnes; “indeed you must not come here any more.”

“Well, then,” said the stranger, “at least you will meet
me at some time, — tell me only where.”


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“I cannot, — indeed, I cannot,” said Agnes, distressed and
embarrassed. “Even now, if grandmamma knew you were
here, she would be so angry.”

“But how can you pray for me, when you know nothing
of me?”

“The dear Lord knoweth you,” said Agnes; “and when
I speak of you, He will know what you need.”

“Ah, dear child, how fervent is your faith! Alas for me,
I have lost the power of prayer! I have lost the believing
heart my mother gave me, — my dear mother who is now in

“Ah, how can that be?” said Agnes. “Who could lose
faith in so dear a Lord as ours, and so loving a mother?”

“Agnes, dear little lamb, you know nothing of the world;
and I should be most wicked to disturb your lovely peace of
soul with any sinful doubts. Oh, Agnes, Agnes, I am most
miserable, most unworthy!”

“Dear Sir, should you not cleanse your soul by the holy
sacrament of confession, and receive the living Christ within
you? For he says, `Without me ye can do nothing.'”

“Oh, Agnes, sacrament and prayer are not for such as me!
It is only through your pure prayers I can hope for grace.”

“Dear Sir, I have an uncle, a most holy man, and gentle
as a lamb. He is of the convent San Marco in Florence,
where there is a most holy prophet risen up.”

“Savonarola?” said the cavalier, with flashing eyes.

“Yes, that is he. You should hear my uncle talk of
him, and how blessed his preaching has been to many souls.
Dear Sir, come some time to my uncle.”

At this moment the sound of Elsie's voice was heard ascending
the path to the gorge outside, talking with Father
Antonio, who was returning.


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Both started, and Agnes looked alarmed.

“Fear nothing, sweet lamb,” said the cavalier; “I am

He kneeled and kissed the hand of Agnes, and disappeared
at one bound over the parapet on the side opposite
that which they were approaching.

Agnes hastily composed herself, struggling with that half-guilty
feeling which is apt to weigh on a conscientious nature
that has been unwittingly drawn to act a part which would
be disapproved by those whose good opinion it habitually
seeks. The interview had but the more increased her curiosity
to know the history of this handsome stranger. Who,
then, could he be? What were his troubles? She wished
the interview could have been long enough to satisfy her
mind on these points. From the richness of his dress, from
his air and manner, from the poetry and the jewel that accompanied
it, she felt satisfied, that, if not what she supposed,
he was at least nobly born, and had shone in some splendid
sphere whose habits and ways were far beyond her simple
experiences. She felt towards him somewhat of the awe
which a person of her condition in life naturally felt toward
that brilliant aristocracy which in those days assumed the
state of princes, and the members of which were supposed
to look down on common mortals from as great a height as
the stars regard the humblest flowers of the field.

“How strange,” she thought, “that he should think so
much of me! What can he see in me? And how can it
be that a great lord, who speaks so gently and is so reverential
to a poor girl, and asks prayers so humbly, can be so
wicked and unbelieving as he says he is? Dear God, it cannot
be that he is an unbeliever; the great Enemy has been
permitted to try him, to suggest doubts to him, as he has to


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holy saints before now. How beautifully he spoke about his
mother! — tears glittered in his eyes then, — ah, there must
be grace there after all!”

“Well, my little heart,” said Elsie, interrupting her reveries,
“have you had a pleasant day?”

“Delightful, grandmamma,” said Agnes, blushing deeply
with consciousness.

“Well,” said Elsie, with satisfaction, “one thing I know,
— I 've frightened off that old hawk of a cavalier with his
hooked nose. I have n't seen so much as the tip of his shoe-tie
to-day. Yesterday he made himself very busy around
our stall; but I made him understand that you never would
come there again till the coast was clear.”

The monk was busily retouching the sketch of the Virgin of
the Annunciation. He looked up, and saw Agnes standing
gazing towards the setting sun, the pale olive of her cheek
deepening into a crimson flush. His head was too full of his
own work to give much heed to the conversation that had
passed, but, looking at the glowing face, he said to himself, —

“Truly, sometimes she might pass for the rose of Sharon
as well as the lily of the valley!”

The moon that evening rose an hour later than the night
before, yet found Agnes still on her knees before the sacred
shrine, while Elsie, tired, grumbled at the draft on her sleeping-time.

“Enough is as good as a feast,” she remarked between her
teeth; still she had, after all, too much secret reverence for
her grandchild's piety openly to interrupt her. But in those
days, as now, there were the material and the spiritual, the
souls who looked only on things that could be seen, touched,
and tasted, and souls who looked on the things that were


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Agnes was pouring out her soul in that kind of yearning,
passionate prayer possible to intensely sympathetic people,
in which the interests and wants of another seem to annihilate
for a time personal consciousness, and make the whole
of one's being seem to dissolve in an intense solicitude for
something beyond one's self. In such hours prayer ceases
to be an act of the will, and resembles more some overpowering
influence which floods the soul from without, bearing
all its faculties away on its resistless tide.

Brought up from infancy to feel herself in a constant circle
of invisible spiritual agencies, Agnes received this wave
of intense feeling as an impulse inspired and breathed into
her by some celestial spirit, that thus she should be made an
interceding medium for a soul in some unknown strait or
peril. For her faith taught her to believe in an infinite
struggle of intercession in which all the Church Visible and
Invisible were together engaged, and which bound them in
living bonds of sympathy to an interceding Redeemer, so
that there was no want or woe of human life that had not
somewhere its sympathetic heart, and its never-ceasing
prayer before the throne of Eternal Love. Whatever
may be thought of the actual truth of this belief, it certainly
was far more consoling than that intense individualism
of modern philosophy which places every soul alone in its
life-battle, — scarce even giving it a God to lean upon.


Splendor of the Father's glory,
Bringing light with cheering ray,
Light of light and fount of brightness,
Day, illuminating day!
In our prayers we call thee Father,
Father of eternal glory,
Father of a mighty grace:
Heal our errors, we implore thee!
Form our struggling, vague desires;
Power of spiteful spirits break;
Help us in life's straits, and give us
Grace to suffer for thy sake!
Christ for us shall be our food;
Faith in him our drink shall be;
Hopeful, joyful, let us drink
Soberness of ecstasy!
Joyful shall our day go by,
Purity its dawning light,
Faith its fervid noontide glow,
And for us shall be no night!


“'Neath Saint Michael's watch is given
Peace on earth and peace in heaven.”