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hands, and, kneeling upon the carcases of their mountains, forests and barrancas, than we slain foes, implored, in humble formula, for- had obtained from all the works we had giveness for themselves and for their enemies. previously read on the subject. But of this
“Over valley and plain the shades of evening had spread themselves; in the barrancas
more hereafter. We pause to make a final it was already night; but the mountains of the extract of a scene upon the Paseo Nuevo, Sierra Madre still glowed in flame color, the or public promenade of the city of Mexico majestic, snow-covered peaks blazing, like The Paseo, a double alley of poplars, exmighty beacons, in unspeakable glory and tending from the south-western extremity of splendor. Suddenly flocks of vultures and the capital to the bridge over the Chalco eagles arose and drew near, their hoarse cries canal, à distance of a couple of miles, is mingling with the groans of the dying and sobs of the wounded, and completing the hor- crowded with the carriages of the Creole rible sublimity of the scene. The last note of ladies, with pedestrians and horsemen. A the bells tolled out: the Indians arose, gazed group of the latter, consisting of Spanish at each other for a moment in lowering silence, officers, have halted by the side of the road, and then, without a word, threw themselves and are indulging in loud and insolent comupon the remaining Spaniards with a rage and ments on the appearance of the ladies. rapidity that seemed scarcely human. In a few seconds not one of the dragoons drep he breath of life. To a man they had been black-bearded crew, a fiery little ensign, as he
“Carajo! suddenly exclaimed one of the strangled and stabbed by their vindictive and pitiless foes."
gave his horse the spur, and galloped after a
coach containing two ladies, one of whom, · Even from such brief scraps as these judging from the graceful outline of her elemay be gathered evidence of great power, tractions. The young officer's sudden move,
gantly dressed form, possessed no ordinary atboth picturesque and dramatic. We do not ment drew the attention of his comrades and propose to go into further details of the of the public, and both began, although aster plot of the Viceroy' which can hardly a different fashion, to make their remarks upon be said to be brought to a wind-up, except
66 • Demonio !' cried the officers. ing as regards certain political maneuvres of Count St. Jago, crowned with complete low, deep tones.
Abajo ! (shame! muttered the crowd, in But the common forms of ro
“Adelante, Lopez!' cried several officers. mance-writing, the obligato deaths and mar- “Viva el conquistador!' shouted others, riages at the close of a third volume, may encouragingly. well be dispensed with in this instance. “By my soul, bold as a Navarrese! exWe have here far better than the ordinary claimed one. routine of story-telling-a living and mov- plied another, "for Don Lopez Matanza has
“Say, rather, saucy as an Andalusian, reing panorama of Mexico passes before our the honor to be a born Andalusian.' eyes as we turn these pages. The luxury 6. From the country which the archangel and lavish magnificence of the Spanish Gabriel himself visited,' laughed a third. rulers, their gilt abodes, and pride of birth, “This willy conversation was suddenly inand inexpressible contempt and loathing for terrupted by a loud scream of indignation and the colored races, or gente irrazionale, as
terror proceeding from the carriage in which they called them, the fawning subserviency the two ladies sat, and to which the ensign had of some of the Creoles, the brooding impa- à Spaniard, and the insolence of a privileged tience of their yoke which others felt, but profligate. For one moment a stillness like rarely dared to show; the stubborn, dogged that of death reigned in the Paseo, whilst thouhalf-breeds; the Indians, gentle and sub- sands of heads were turned, and thousands of missive, till spurred by inhuman cruelties necks stretched out, in the direction whence the to an outbreak of desperate ferocity; the cry came, and then, as the cause gradually Leperos, lazzaroni of the New World, half- became known, the carriages all stopped, and naked, and for the most part imbecile, sunk hundreds round the coach whose occupant had
riders and walkers galloped and pressed in in squalor, filth, and misery; such are a been outraged. In an instant the presumptuportion of the figures whom Mr. Sealsfield ous officer was surrounded by an innumerable displays upon his well-filled and vivid can-throng, forming a compact mass round him vass. Nor is he less successful in his de- and the carriage. At the same time a murlineation of inanimate nature. From the mur arose which at first had a character of tim
Viceroy,' and from his other Mexican idity, but soon became louder and more threatbook, "South and North,' we have gather-lening. As yet no hand had been lifted against
the audacious insulter of Mexican womanhood, ed a clearer notion of the scenery and con- when suddenly the terrible words ‘Down with figuration of the country, its lakes and the tyrants !" echoed through the crowd. A Vol. IX. No. I.
hundred hands were raised, and the unfortu- “The unlucky Spaniard lay behind the founnate ensign disappeared from off his horse. tain, slone dead, his breast pierced with nur The other officers, who had come up in all merous stiletto ihrusts. Certain blue marks haste, in vain endeavored with drawn swords upon his throat plainly told that he had first 10 force their way to their comrade.
been strangled and then stabbed. 6. Señoria, for the mother of God's sake! ** They have twisted his neck like a young exclaimed an old Spanish hidalgo to a colonel, hound,' cried Don Pinto. who stood a little apart, absorbed in the con- “Señores,' said the colonel, solily and templation of a brilliant phaëton, which now gravely, our brother has sought his fate. rapidly ascended the Paseo, and apparently These despised Creoles begin to discover their unmindful of what had passed— Señoria! shame. Beware of quickening their percepscreamed the hidalgo, 'only think what inso- tions.' lence! one of your officers, the very honora- * Madre de Dios !' murmured a captain ; ble Ensign Don Lopez Matanza, or the regi- ' in broad, brighi daylight, and in the face of ment of Saragossa, as I believe, condescended thousands, they have throtiled him like a dog ! to favor the Señorita Zuniga with his atten- 5. Such deeds alarm me,' said the colonel; tions, and to offer her a salutation which any they are sparks which may easily grow into countess in Mexico should feel honored to re- a bláze. Once more, señores-prudence ! ceive, and the shameless girl
" A picket of troops that had been stationed "By my soul, Don Abasalo Agostino Pinto, a thousand paces off, on the bridge over the you are a fool!' replied the colonel, spurring Chalco canal, now came up; the colonel gave his horse, and dashing into the thick of the the necessary orders, and, after seeing the crowd, which at the same moment divided, incorpse laid upon a bier formed of muskels, rode order to give passage to the phaëton and its down the Paseo. The other officers followed four Andalusian horses, and to escape the the body of their murdered comrade." swords of the six life-guardsmen who preceded the vehicle. Strangely enough, a few seconds saw the crowd dispersed in wonderful order
We have spoken of Mr. Sealsfield's wriand silence in the side alleys, and the viceroytings in terms of very high praise, and reflecal equipage was able to draw up uninipeded tion does not induce us to retract one syllable beside the carriage in which the insulted ladies of the commendation bestowed. Maturesat.
ly considered, our verdict is that he is one of 6. What is all this ?' inquired one of two la- the most remarkable writers of his class now dies who occupied the phaëion.
"A piece of gallantry carried rather too living. His works are invaluable acquisifar, as I understand,' replied the colonel, " and tions to German literature, both on account of which my ensign, Don Lopez Matanza, has of their intrinsic worth and interest, and as been guilty.
likely to stimulate a fresher and more natu"We are inexpressibly grieved, dear señoral tone amongst the present school of Gerras, continued ihe lady, in melodious, but man novelists. He deals in the real and somewhat imperious tones, and intreat you the true, not in mysticism and sickly sentifor a while to consider our carriage as yours.'
ment. And whilst she leaned over with enchanting
Whilst lauding the merits of bi. wrigrace towards the ladies, two richly liveried lings, we are not however blind to their deattendants lifted the terrified and hair-fainting fects. The former are, a deep knowledge Creole out of her coach, and placed her in the of human nature, character skilfully drawn, phaëton beside their mistrese, who bowed to dialogue spirited and dramatic, descrip ion the officers, and then, with the gracious smile of a high order, incidents agreeable and ofof a queen, continued her progress along the ten striking. His failings are an utter negPaseo.
“For a moment the eyes of the colonel fol- ligence in the carrying out of his plots, oclowed the proud beauty, and then turned their casional inconsistencies and omissions, sich gaze upon the Creoles, who again rode, drove, as writers of the present day rarely hazard, and walked about as if nothing in the least un- and, in sonie instances, wildness and incousual had occurred.
herency of style. At times he seems to "Strange! upon my honor," said he to his throw ihe reins upon the neck of his imtanza ? Don Martinez, you will take away his agination, which carries him Heaven knows sword for three days. Where is Ensign Don where, but certainly far beyond the ken of Lopez Matanza?' repeated the colonel in a
his reader. This is especially the case in louder tone. He had disappeared, and his his last publication, South and North,' a horse with him.
narrative of an adventurous ramble through “Where is Don Lopez Matanza ?'exclaim- Mexico, accomplished by a party of Ameried all the officers.
We refer the reader to the seven** Seek him behind the fountain,' cried teenth chapter for a fine sample of the powvoices in the distance.
" "Jesus Maria !'. Todos diablos !' Santa erfully rhapsodical. The travellers bivouac Virgen!' shouted and screamed the officers. in a swamp, and are attacked by the mus
quito fever. The chapter was written, we of the nopal gardens, then the ultramarine and should think, during a paroxysm of that dis- old, and green, and white, and bright yellow tressing malady, or under the influence of of the orange and citron groves, and finally a pipe of opium. But this same book, al
the lofty san and date palms, and the splendid
banana, all covered with millions of dewdrops though extravagant and of little interest as that gliítered and sparkled like countless diaa whole, contains passages as fine as any monds and rubies."-Süden und Norden, vol. thing that Mr Sealsfield has written ur that I, p. 177. we have read. He is never more happy than in the description of scenery. It is
And further on: easy to babble about green fields, and the merest scribblers reckon thereupon for fill
"From out of the distant background the ing up considerable portions of their drow- silver dome of the star of Mexican mountains sy post octavos, but between such babbling ed silver, detaching itself from the deep azure
towered into the heavens, one vast field of frostand the vivid picturesqueness, strength of of the sky as from a dark blue ocean. More diction, and happiness of expression, which to the right, but nearer, the cliffs of the Senplace a fine landscape, an aboriginal forest, poaltepec, with their granite terraces, and gathe incalculable vegetable luxuriance of a bles, and towers, rose in fantastic groups to a Texian prairie, or the tropical glories of a height of twelve thousand feet. Bui at the foot Mexican barranca, before the reader's
of this mighty world of snow and mountain, in the mellow, sunny coloring of a Claude, swimming in all the colors of the rainbow
were hedges of banana and palm, dividing or with the savage boldness of a Salvator, sugar, and cotton, and nopal fields, sprinkled lies a chasm both deep and wide. Let us with citron, and orange, and fig trees of gigansee on which side of the gulf Mr. Sealsfield tic height, iwice as high as our northern oaks ; stands. Hear him describe a sunrise in every tree a hothouse, a pyramid, a huge noseSouthern Mexico :
gay, covered to the distance of a liundred feet
from the ground, with flowers and blossoms, "Wrapped in our mantles, we watched the with dendrobiums, paulinias, bignonias, and last stars that yet lingered palely in the heav- convolvulus. And then pomegranate gardens, ens. Suddenly the eastern sky grew light, and chicazopotes, and chirimoyas, and strawand a bright point appeared, like a fallen star berry trees, the whole valley one vast garden, floating between heaven and earth—but yet no but such a garden as no northern imagination star, its hue was too ruddy. We still gazed could even faintly picture.”—Lüden und Norin silence, when a second fiery spot showed it- den, vol. i., p. 210. self in the neighborhood of the first, which now grew and increased, and became like a flaming Yet one more extract of a similar class : tongue, licking round the silver summits of the snow-crowned hills, and then descending, as “This valley of Oaxaca has about the same the flames in a burning village creep from roof right to be styled a valley that our Alleghanys to walls. And as we looked, tive, ten, twenty would have to be called bottoms. We should mounta peaks became bached the same call it a chain of mountains, although here it rosy fire, which spread with lightning swill- is looked upon as a valley, in comparison with ness, like a banner of flames, from hill-top to the tar higher mountains íhat rise out of it and hill-top. Scarce five minutes had elapsed surround it as with a frame. And truly a magsince the high mountains, wrapped in their nificent frame they are, with their varieties of dull pale shroud of snow, had shown dim and light, and shade, and color, here looking like frosty in the distance, and now both they and dead gold, then like the same metal in a state their smaller brethren flamed forth like mighty of' fiery solution, and then again darkening inbeacons or lava-streaming volcanoes, bringing to a deep, rich, golden bronze. Below, the to our minds, in all its living truth, the word bright and dark green, and crimson and purple, of Him who said, 'Let there be light, and there and violet and yellow, and azure and dazzling was light.? Above, all was bright and glori- white of myriads of flowers, and the prodigious ous day; below, gloomy sullen night. Here palms, far more than a hundred feet high, their and there, floods of radiance were poured in majestic turbans rising like sultans' heads through the clests of the mountains, and where above the luxuriant tree and vegetable world! they penetrated, a strange contest ensued. And then the mahogany trees, the chicazoThe shades of darkness seemed to live, and potes, and in the barrancas the candelabramove, and engage in desperate struggle with like cactus, and higher up the knotted and mathe intrusive sunbeams that broke and dispers-jestic live oak. A perpetual change of plants, ed them, chasing them up the wooded heighıs, irees, and temperature. For five hours have and rending them asunder like cobwebs, so we ridden, and have changed our climate nearthat suddenly and as by enchantment were ly as often, passing from the tierra templada, disclosed the deep indigo blue of the tamarinds the temperate zone, into the lierra caliente and and chicazopotes, lower down, the bright green muy caliente, the hot and torrid. Just now we of the sugar fielde, lower still, the darker tints are roasted with heat, the sweat bursting from
every pore, as we move through an entirely was, in fact, a surprise, followed, as we have new world of plants and animals. Borax, and always understood, and as other writers on mangroves, and ferns as lofty as trees, and the subject have asserted, by the instantatrees like church towers, springing out of the aboriginal forest far higher even than the co
neous and panic flight of the whole of Santa lossal mahogany. And then the exotic ani- Anna's army. On the other hand, he gives mals that we see around us-black tigers—we some laughable instances of their poltroonhavestumbled upon at least a dozen of the cow- ery in previous encounters, when opposed ardly, sneaking brutes—and iguanas, three feet but to a tithe of their numbers. The Dons, long, and squirrels twice as large as those in although numerically and in discipline far the States, and ocelotls, and wild boars, and superior to the backwoodsmen pitted against cojotes-although these latter are to be found every where—and grinning apes of every size them, who had little onotion of military tacand species. And yonder, standing out white tics, and fought, for the most part, each and bright from the deep-blue heavens and man 'on his own hook,' yet labored under bronze-colored rocks, is the village of Quidri- some disadvantages. Not the least of these covi.”—Süden und Norden, vol. ii., p. 184. appears to have been the quality of their
ammunition. Charcoal-dust cartridges, and Similar passages abound in the book muskets made to sell,' both proceeding, whence these are taken. Allowing for the we are told, from British manufactures, disadvantage of a translation, and the diffi- were picked up and curiously examined by culty of rendering the full richness of the the Texians afier a fight upon the banks of original German, they will be admitted to the Salado, during which they had had readisplay great descriptive power, as well as son to feel astonished at their own seeming. a keen perception and poetical appreciation ly miraculous invulnerability to a heavy fire. of the beauties of external nature.
And as the Mexicans, out of respect for the The most conspicuous feature in the superior qualities of their opponents' weapCabin-book,' which, as the name hints, ons, usually fired at extreme musket-range, contains a string of stories told in the cabin and sometimes a trifle beyond, it is no wonof a steamer, is an animated account of the der that the Texian loss was reckoned Texian revolution, its causes, progress, and by units, when that on the other side aultimate triumph. Mr. Sealsfield's narra- mounted to hundreds.* The cavalry, whose tive of battles and marches could not be sabres, upon the level prairie, ought to have more graphic had he himself taken share in told with terrible effect against the irreguthem. We know not whether this was the lar array of the Texians, behaved with concase, although from his evidently erratic and spicuous cowardice, and when they were adventurous propensities we should not be brought up to a charge, their officers were surprised to learn that he had made the picked off, and the men retired in confusion. campaign, and that those are his own ad
“We saw the officers furiously gesticulating, ventures that he puts into the mouth of a brandishing their sabres, and torturing their young American settler in Texas. After a horses with the spur, till the irritated animals very few skirmishes, the steady courage and reared and plunged, and sprang into the air, terrible marksmanship of the Texians seem all four feet off the ground. It is fair to say, to have inspired their antagonists with a that the officers showed far more pluck than wholesome terror; and although the exult- we had given them credit for. Two squadrons ation of the former at their early and easy officers; but those who had been spared,
had charged us, and lost two-thirds of their successes was soon damped by their terrible nothing daunted by their comrades' fall, used reverses at the forts of Goliad and the Ala- where thirteen hundred men, the flow
* “ The loss of the Mexicans (during the siege er of the Texian army, were sacrificed-the
and capture by the Texians of St. Antonio de
Bexar, in December, 1835) consisted in 740 dead, prudence of Houston and the tenacity of his
a few men slightly wounded, who marched away soldiers again changed the fortune of the with General Cos, and a large number whose war, and the final victory of San Jacinto hurts were severe, and who remained behind unand capture of Santa Anna established the der care of our surgeons. Our loss amounted to
six dead, twenty-nine wounded who went into independence of Texas. Conquerors and hospital
, and a few others who were not suffitheir partisans do not willingly detract from ciently hurt to prevent their going into quarters the merit of their achievements by taxing in the town. The disproportion is so enorinous the vanquished with utter cowardice and in- as to be almost incredible, but in most of the accapacity, and Mr. Sealsfield extols the des- sions of that war, the killed of the Mexicans were
to those of the Texians as one hundred to one. perate courage displayed by a portion of the H. Ehrenberg's " Fahrten und Schicksale eines Mexicans in the abovenamed battle, which Deutschen in Texas,' pp. 73.
every exertion again to bring their men to the nents. But all these advantages avail not scraich. At last there appeared a chance of against the cool resolute courage of the their accomplishing it, in a most original and Ainericans.* It seems the destiny of the thoroughly Mexican manner. They rode on alone for about a hundred yards, then stopped Spanish-American nations, who all in their and looked back at their men, as much as to turn have displayed bravery and soldiership say, Thus far you may come with whole when fighting for independence, to sink, skins.' Then they galloped back again, and that once obtained, into thorough dastards, tried to get the men on. Each repetition of incapable of standing their ground against this manauvre brought the reluctani dragoons any foreign foe, and retaining but just thirty or forty paces forward, when they again sufficient courage to cut each other's throats halted as by common consent. Again the in domestic broils and squabbles. The officers scampered forward, and then back to their squadrons to persuade them to a further Mexicans are evidently unable to hold their advance. And in this way these valiant fight own, and if the United States, as a nation, ing men were lured to within a hundred and chose it, and supposing always that Europe fifty yards of our position.”
would permit such dismemberment, other
provinces of Mexico might with little diffiBut only to be again repulsed and com-culty be absorbed into the Union. Doubtpletely routed. Considering that Mexican less, the mountains and climate would horsemen, especially those of Santa Fé and bother the Yankees; it would take time to Louis Potosi, are perhaps the finest in the habituate an Anglo-American population to world, and that their sabre blades, albeit Mexican fevers and temperature; but the not forged ai Damascus or Toledo, could swamps and miasmata and agues of Louisnot be liable to the same objections as the iana and Florida, are no bad preparation for Brummagem cartridges, such pusillanimity those of more southerly latitudes. Moreon the part of disciplined masses, when over, the love of change and desire to keep opposed in the open field to a mere handful moving, would, we believe, reconcile Amerof rifiemen, is truly inconceivable. We ican squatters to the climate of Tartarus should suspect high coloring, but for the itself. For it is not by direct attacks and corroborative evidence afforded by other open hostilities that Brother Jonathan prosaccounts of the war. The military virtues ecutes his schemes of conquest and aggranof the Mexicans appear to be limited to dizement, but by the slower and surer plan prancing on parades, issuing proclamations that has already succeeded in Texas. Emridiculously bombastic, and asserting de- igration to the coveted province is encourfeats to be victories, with an audacity of aged, and goes on till the settlers think lying unparalleled even in the annals of bul- themselves strong enough to refuse obediletins. However superior their numbers, ence to the laws of the country where they the only battles they can hope to gain are have been unsuspectingly allowed to estabthose in which they shall be opposed to lish themselves. If force is made use of to greater cowards than themselves. Such it subdue the turbulent intruders, they set up would probably not be easy to find. a howl of outraged liberty, and shout across
To-day, when the United States are the frontier to their kin and cousins; then attempting to vindicate, by the glittering men and arms are forth with sent to assist but hollow argument of the sword, their un. them in dispossessing the tyrants, who dare justifiable aggression upon a neighbor's ter- to assert their right to their own. This ritory, details of the contest for Texian in- was the case with Texas; this would have dependence acquire fresh interest. They been the case, forty years ago, with Louisafford data whence to judge of the probable isiana, had not its cession by the Spaniards duration and issue of the present struggle. to the French, and its sale by the latter to Not that such data are in reality wanted. the United States, rendered such arbitrary • There needs no ghost to tell us that the violence unnecessary. But the plan was in degenerate descendants of Spaniards and Indians can never be a match for the pow- America has abundantly confirmed these opin
* Since ihis was written, intelligence from erful offshoots of the Anglo-Saxon race. ions. With advantages of numbers and position The Mexican troops, it is said, have im- that would have enabled men possessed of the proved during the last few years in disci- slightest courage and conduct to annihilate or pline and equipment, their cavalry are noto capture the whole of General Taylor's army, the riously first-rate horsemen, and the army miniously beaten and dislodged. Greater impo
Mexicans have allowed themselves to be ignothey can at once bring into the field far oul- tency and cowardice were never displayed, even numbers the disposable force of their oppo- by the generals and soldiers of Mexico.