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The qualifications of the two whom the Apostles chose to place before the Lord that one might be appointed in the stead of the traitor, become the text of a poem on the Christian Ministry. The chosen priest must have been a close follower of his Lord, learning lowliness from His cradle, patience from His Cross, and feeling His Divinity in agony as well as in glory.
• But who is sufficient for these things ?' It is only Christ's promise to His Bride-'And lo! I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world,'—that could enable any to undertake the awful charge. None, uncalled by the Lord Himself, could dare; and that call must be certified by His hand and seal—that seal which is committed to His anointed heralds, that they may confer His commission to those who as kings and priests lead His armies and fight His battles.
Then saith the minister and good soldier of his great Captain
· fearless walk we forth,
By our own shame alike and glory awed.'
This is altogether a ministerial poem. That in the Lyra, entitled 'Enacting Holy Rites,' is of more universal application, describing how often the child's play betokens the bent of his future mind, and almost acts it beforehand, just as the streams which have part of their course under-ground will bear along on their current, when they come to the surface again, the 'floating tokens' that have been thrown in near their
Anxious she is if his inclination seem cast in these secular delights ; how much more if he strive dimly to imitate the priestly functions ? Then her hopes soar above the highest heaven, but her fears fall below the lowest deep; for what is so fearful as the lot of the false apostle, and those who fail like him?
• Cast ye the lot, in trembling cast,
was once said ; and how should we not strive by prayer and fast that the dangerous glory of the priesthood should fall only on brows worthy to retain it, and that the boy's imitation of holy rites may be such an omen as were St. Athanasius' youthful instructions to his comrades on the sea-shore, when he baptized them in full earnest, and as it had been done in all reverence and simplicity, the Bishop of Alexandria deemed that the Sacrament need not be administered.
In such a hope the mother watches her son, praying for him in hope when most he fears, in trembling when his hopes mount high;' and her prayers, wafted by her guardian angel, strike a chord above of more than angel sympathy.
For if there was unspeakable heaviness on the soul of the Saviour
• When with the traitor in His sight,
His secret sad He told apart;'
yet when He spake of the treasures hidden from the wise and prudent and revealed unto babes, it was with infinite gladness and thanksgiving; and such joy is with the Good Shepherd when His children shew His true tokens of mingled meekness and daring, as they whisper their part in chants of Heaven.
6" Else," warning love cries out, “ beware
(To be continued.)
HYMN-POEMS ON NOTABLE TEXTS.
BY THE REV. S. J. STONE, B.A.
AUTHOR OF 'LYRA FIDELIUM.'
No. II.-LIGHT AT EVENTIDE.
'At evening time it shall be light.'-Zechariah, xiv. 7
NEED bath the Golden City none
With dull despairing gaze beyond,
And cries, 'Life endeth with the tomb,
The deep dark shades may whelm the day,
It shall be light; when I behold
CONTENTED WE OUR GOD ADORE.
ALONE, alone, the wilderness
Is fairer than the fertile vale,
And as the stars of heav'n grow pale
So in that all-consuming fire
Is turn'd to nothingness, and we
Allured by one gentle Voice,
In silence on our knees rejoice,
To that tumultuous city street,-
SKETCHES FROM HUNGARIAN HISTORY.
BY THE AUTHOR OF COURAGE AND COWARDS ;''IVON,' &c.
THE LAST OF THE ÁRPÁDs.
A.D. 1278 TO A.D. 1301.
László IV. was now the only male representative of the House of Arpád in Hungary. It may, however, be remembered that András II.'s third wife, Beatrice d'Este, bore a son, shortly after the death of her husband. This son, named István, led a most adventurous life. Born at the court of bis uncle, Azo VII., Margrave of Este, he there remained till he grew up, when an unsuccessful attempt made by him to upset his uncle's government obliged him to leave Italy. He fled for refuge to his step-sister, Jolantha, Queen of Arragon ; returned after a time to Italy, and was chosen Podestà of Ravenna; but being soon driven thence, retired to Venice, and married Thomasina Morosini.
Neither his step-brother, Béla IV., nor his nephew, István V., had cared to acknowledge their connection with him, but had on the contrary done their best to keep him out of Hungary. Now, however, when the race of Arpád had so greatly diminished, the people, fearing lest it should become altogether extinct, urgently entreated László to call home his cousin András, the only son of István, who was now dead. László yielded to the wishes of the nation, and made András—the Venetian,' as he was called-Duke of Sclavonia, thus acknowledging him as heirpresumptive to the throne.
András seems to have settled very quietly in Sclavonia, and to have done few acts of any importance. It is indeed not improbable, that László circumscribed his power; or it may have been that the Duke was wise enough to see that the less he interfered with matters of state, the better. Hungary was at this time in a miserable condition. The young king's mother, Erzsébet, though brought up at the Hungarian court, had never thoroughly forgotten or abandoned her Kuman habits; and as for the relations, whom she delighted to have about her, they retained to the full their wild lawless ways, and scarcely made an attempt at adopting the manners of Christians and Europeans. Nor were the Hungarian lords whom the Queen favoured by any means models either of wisdom or virtue. Yet these were the examples László had had before his eyes from his childhood ; among such persons, and under such influences, he grew up, indulged in every whim, and corrected by no one. One of his tutors, indeed, was punished as guilty of high treason, for having presumed to cane his Majesty. Under such circumstances, it is scarcely surprising that his naturally violent temper grew wilder as he grew older; that he too favoured the Kumans, and liked to adopt their easy-going manners. He had no affection for his Angevin wife, Isabella, and therefore left her in a nunnery on the Margarethen-Insel, while he lived a wild lawless life with the Kumans, and other like-minded companions. As for the government, he troubled himself vastly little about it, and left it entirely in the hands of his mother and Pektári, who shamelessly broke the laws, and robbed the State, the Church, and private persons, without compunction.
Their example was of course followed by the nobles, and all order seemed to be at an end. The castles, built for defence after the departure of the Mongolians, became nests of robbers; the weak were plundered by the strong, and orphans were robbed of their inheritance by their neighbours. In the plains beyond the Danube wandered the Kuman tribes, still, for the most part, heathen. They respected no rights of property, pastured their cattle in whatever fields or gardens they chanced to come across, laid hands or anything they fancied, and, as if they had been in an enemy's country, plundered or made slaves of the inbabitants. So great was the general insecurity, that the collector of the Pope's dues did not know how to get the money safely to Rome, and wrote to inform his pontifical master of the dilemma in which he found himself.
The Hungarian prelates also sought help from Rome, and the Pope despatched a legate to László, who at first refused to receive him; but, being afterwards persuaded to yield, went into the opposite extreme, and became almost abjectly submissive. He promised everything that was demanded, and kept his word so far as to summon a Diet, at which the following arrangements were made with regard to the Kumans. Their chiefs promised, in the name of the seven tribes, that they should become Christians within a very short time, and that each tribe should give a hostage as a pledge of their good faith. They were also obliged to promise that they would give up dwelling in their dearly-loved tents, and build themselves respectable houses. The legate even insisted that they should be required to cut their hair and shave, and lay aside their peculiar dress; but the Diet was more merciful, and only required that they should conform to Christian habits in other more important respects. The Diet concluded by charging the Palatine Csák Máté to keep a watchful eye upon public affairs, punish robbers, and above all, restore to their rightful owners any lands which had been taken from the Church or private persons. This latter clause was evidently directed against the bad influence of the Queen-mother and her favourites. As soon as the sittings of the Diet were ended, the legate held a synod; but in his zeal for the Pope, he endeavoured to bring in measures which threatened the freedom of the Hungarian Church, and encroached on the rights which had belonged to the King of Hungary, from the very foundation of the monarchy.
László indignantly ordered the town of Buda to shut her gates upon VOL. 9.