never tires of inquiring about the ruddy priest of the
sweet words, " said the physician.
The Wedding at Cana. . 387
* 4 1 obey, my Master, it s God s will. What shall be
my theme ? "
" Oh, Cana continued; De Griffin is constantly in
quiring as to when the ruddy priest of the sweet words
is to continue the tale of the Cana," said the Grand
" Praise the Day Spring that hath visited us ! "
"You echo the thought of all our souls, Cornelius.
And it was so that on the day following the chapel
of the " House of Rest " was filled with much the same
company that met there the last time.
Miriamne arrived early and eagerly questioned Cor
nelius as he passed her on his way to his robing-room:
" Oh, brother, hast thou a message of grace and
hope for me, to-day?"
" The entrance of thy word givcth ligJit" was his
quiet reply; and he passed on, not daring to tarry near
the woman that so strangely moved him. He felt
very serious, and hence avoided that which might dis
tract his attention.
But Miriamne felt assured, while Cornelius was all
faith in the efficacy of the Divine word in working the
cure of minds perturbed.
Presently he stood behind his reading-desk and,
waiting until the organ tone had died away, com
menced by reading these words :
"And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of
Galilee ; and the mother of Jesus was there :
And both Jesus was called, and his disciples, to
Sir Charleroy had entered the chapel, and was mov
ing toward a lonely ^eat ; his motions were languid ;
nis action listless, except when at intervals he gazed
388 The Queen of t lie House of David.
into the empty air and hissed some incoherent words
at imaginary people. But the word " Cana " arrested
his attention. He looked up, smiled, and then ex
claimed : " Oh, the red-faced ! That s it ; tell us more,
more of Cana ! "
Cornelius complied. " We have here a story of two
lives in the most precious tie on earth, marriage."
Then the chaplain read :
" We see Christ at a Jewish wedding, and the Hebrew
marriage was ever an occasion of great joy. Not only so,
but the weddings of that people were characterized by very
instructive and impressive ceremonies. Let me explain.
The day before the wedding both bride and groom fasted,
confessed their sins and made ceremonial atonement for the
errors of their past lives. They were to be part of each
other, and felt that each owed it to the other to be free
from burden or taint of the past. Both bride and groom at
the wedding wore wreaths of myrtle, the emblem of justice,
constantly to typify that virtue as supreme in wedlock."
" Oh, young priest, thou art an angel ! "
The voice startled all but Sir Charleroy. He had
spoken, yet his face indicated only placidity and inter
est. Cornelius proceeded :
" The bride, veiled from head to foot to show that her
beauty was to be seen only by him to whom she gave her
self, decked with a girdle, emblem of strength and subjec
tion, was led in triumph from the home of her father to the
home of him who was to possess her. Before she took her
departure, kindly hands anointed her with sweet perfumes
and gave her priceless jewels ; while on her way she was
met by all her friends, singing songs and bearing torches to
gladden her journey toward her new abode. Thus they that
loved the bride did bestir themselves to bestow bounties and
make the maiden most choice. There was no detraction.
no defiling, no effort to belittle. Were wives aided like
brides there would be fewer broken hearts arrong wedded
The Wedding at Cana. 389
"Wondrous true, ruddy priest !" It was the mad
knight s voice. Cornelius continued :
" The feast of the wedding lasted seven days. To such
a gathering Jesus once went. Probably this was the marriage
of a kinsman. Thus, immediately after His temptation and
His baptism, with His mighty redemptional work all before
Him, our Lord deemed it a leading duty to give proper at
tention to this wedding ceremonial, one of the lesser things
that make up so much of life. With man supreme selfish
ness, or natural littleness, engenders apathy to all except
some pre-occupying purpose, but He, in whom all fullness
dwells, entered into and embraced around about all life.
He was as glorious when meddling with human joys and
making the waters of Cana blush to wine, as when grappling
with the sorrows of sin and setting Himself up on Calvary
the beacon and light of the ages."
Miriamne felt the illumination again that first came
to her that Easter-day at Bozrah, while Sir Charleroy s
face glowed with intelligence and peace. This was a
full, round gospel which Cornelius was proclaiming, and
every soul present was fed.
After pausing for an interlude of soothing music he
again proceeded with his discoursing as one conversing :
"At Cana, Christ bound as a captive, natural law.
How He did so we do not know, but we do know that
while destroying no part of nature s system he mys
teriously made it serve for human happiness in a way
unusual and marvelous. It seems to me that the story
of Cana is a fireside story. No matter how miserable
a home may be, it may have faith that in welcoming
the Divine guest it welcomes assured miraculous joy.
Life s waters may blush everywhere to heaven s wine ! "
The mad knight murmured: " Oh, ruddy priest ! if
thou couldsc only preach this in Bozrah."
The Grand Master, who was sitting by Miriamnr
390 The Queen of the House of David.
pressed her hand and whispered : " Memory is reviving
praise to the Day-Spring!"
Cornelius again read his parchment.
"And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus
saith unto him, They have no wine.
" Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do
with thee? Mine hour is not yet come."
" So," said the reader, " these folks were likely poor,
the supply meager, though no man ever yet had enough
of the wine of joy at his wedding until it was blessed
by the God of marriage."
Just then Sir Charleroy, standing up, solemnly said :
"Young man, I d have thee tell these people why He
said Woman, what have I to do with thee? He, the
man, was master, that was it, eh ? "
" Oh, motion to Cornelius not to debate," whispered
Miriamne to the Grand Master; but Cornelius was al
ready adroitly replying :
"True, knight of Saint Mary, but this Master of
ceremonies was Divine. Then He was not calking to
his wife. He had not wed this woman, hence was not
bound by the law of being her other self. Besides that
we must not forget that they had often conversed in
timately before the wedding; she with all the tender
ness of a woman s heart, which in its love ever natur
ally outruns all plans, all reasonings, to bestow all it
has at once upon the all-beloved. She hurried Christ
in the vvay of giving. This to her credit, if her wis
dom is reproved."
The knight settled back in his seat, his face very
pale but not anger-marked.
Cornelius continued : "The term woman is often
used, as here, in all tenderness. Our ruggcu language
The Wedding at Cana. 391
ill translates the original. When a people has not fine
moods in its living, its language becomes like sack
cloth, unfit to clothe the angel-like thoughts of those
who live on more exalted planes. The gross degrade
all their companions, whether such be beings or merely
The leader again read :
" His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever
he saith unto you, do it."
" This shows the good, motherly Mary supplementing
the Master s work. Doubtless, she had her partisans, some
who would have sided with her had she chosen to rebuke
her Son. But she desired harmony at the feast and in the
home. This was the chief end, and for it she was willing
to serve and wait"
" Very true ! Our Lady was always right and good."
It was the voice of the mad knight.
Cornelius continued :
" These were the finest words Mary ever spoke ; they
were the key to her whole life ; indeed, the spirit of the
ideal woman ever more standing nearer to Christ than any
other being ; at a wedding, the very climax of fullest human
love, the gateway to home, the counterpart of heaven, Mary
points all to the Christ, exclaiming, Hear ye Him !
" Our Lady was always a wise, brave, loving, sub
missive woman," exclaimed Sir Charleroy.
"It is an old tradition," replied Cornelius, " that
this was the wedding of John, the beloved and confi
dant of Jesus. It is interesting to remember that that
blessed disciple, in his Gospel, presents the one whom
he loved as a mother but twice once at this wedding,
the other time at the crucifixion ; the places of highest
joy, and deepest sorrow ; a way of saying from the altar
to the cross, is woman s course ; a parable-like present-
39 2 The Queen of tJie House of David.
ment of the doctrine that the wife and mother are to
appear at these two points, so opposite, so common to
all ; the lowest dip, the highest heaven."
The mad knight suddenly interrupted them.
" What did Joseph think of all this? "
Perhaps this odd query was fortunate, for it brought
smiles to all. The knight laughed out until his eyes
were flowing with tears.
Cornelius, self-possessed, quietly replied : " It is said
that Joseph was dead long ere this wedding, and that
Mary was exhaling the perfumes of her consecrated
widowed life to gladdening in pious ministries the peo
ple about her. Widowhood has such purposes."
"Ah, she was the Rose," cried the knight. "If
Joseph were not dead, he might well stand back, be
hind such a wife ! "
The chaplain of the Palestineans closed with a well-
worded climax, recalling the fact that this event made
a lasting impression on the Son of God, as evinced by
the v/ondrous tropes of the Apocalypse, where eternal
goodness and eternal joy are pictured under the simili
tude of a wedding-feast.
The mad knight cried out : " Grand, grand ! Oh,
ruddy priest, I worship thee!"
The Grand Master signaled the conclusion. The
worshipers and patients were slowly retiring, Sir
Charleroy moving toward his lodge seemingly wrapped
in contemplation of some engrossing problem.
He passed near the picture of " Rizpah Defending
Her Relatives," which by some mischance had been
left near the chapel door. Instantly the knight s at
tention was fixed ; he became excited, then suddenly
turning to an attendant, exclaimed :
TJic Wedding at Cana. 393
" Here, tell me, where am I ? Is this London or
Bozrah ? "
" London, good Teuton."
Again he gazed at the picture, and his transforma
tion was startling. His face was distorted, his body
became rigid and swayed as that of the hooded snake
making ready to strike a victim. Then bounding to
the Grand Master s side he snatched the latter s sword
from its hilt, quickly returned to the picture, and be
fore any could prevent him began to hack it to pieces.
One tried to restrain him, but was overpowered, two,
then three were flung aside. Presently he was pinioned
but not silenced.
" Away ! Unhand me ! " he shouted. " In the name
of the King of Jerusalem, the defenders of the Sepul-
cher, unhand me! Do you not see? There! they ve
come to make riot at the feast of Cana ! Ruddy priest,
come quickly. Help ! This fearful gang will all be
loose in a moment ; they be the ghosts of the giants,
and war everlastingly against the peace of homes ;
against our Mary and her Son s kingdom."
He was breathless for a moment, and all were anx
ious lest he be permanently unsettled. Some were
praying for him, others holding him. Then he broke
forth again as before.
" Unhand me, infidels ! God wills it ! Let me cut to
pieces yon horrible thing fresh from hot hell; painted
by the gory and beslimed hands of devils ! See ! it s
bewitched, and the woman and the hanging men and
the vultures are all alive! They ll be at us! One of
those black birds has feasted on my heart for years,
and yon woman has nightly beaten my bare brain with
394 The Queen of the House of David,
They tried to calm him ; his daughter pressed to his
side, and flinging her arms about the knight, beseech
ing]^ cried: "Father! father! it is I! Miriamne ! "
"Miriamne? Ha! ha!" cried the excited man.
"More mockery! More witchery! Miriamne is lost,
eternally lost ! Yon group of demons tore her from
me! Oh, God, if thou lovest a soldier of the cross,
hear me, and blast with burning, swift and quenchless
lightnings, yon monsters, and with them all who sepa
rate hearts and wreck homes ! "
" Father, so say we all ; let us pray together,"
pleaded the girl.
" Father ! Who says father to me ? "
" It is I, your daughter, Miriamne ! "
Suddenly, Sir Charleroy became calm and curiously
observed the maiden. " Art thou Sir Charleroy s
daughter? I knew him once in Palestine. He died
afterward in London and left me his body. But it s
not much use. It s sick most of the time. I carry it
about, though, hoping he ll come for it. If thou dost
want it thou canst have it."
The daughter humored the fancy, and quickly
replied : " I do want it. I love it. I ll help you take
care of it. Let me now hug it to my heart."
Then he permitted her to twine about him her arms,
and when she kissed him the second time he returned
the salutation, and tears ran down his hot cheeks.
" Blessed be the God of peace," fervently ejaculated
Cornelius. " The day dawns; after tears, light."
The knight continued after a time, addressing Miri
" Sir Charleroy was my friend ; and thou art his
daughter? Thou wouldst not deceive me, I know,
The Wedding at Cana. 395
Tell me in a few words," he said, meanwhile furtively
glancing about, " Who am I ? "
Miriamne again humored him, and pressing her lips
nigh his ear, in a whisper replied : " Sir Charleroy,
Teutonic knight, my father."
The old man held her off a little way, gazed at her
a moment, doubtfully, then said : "Thou art large for
a baby ! Miriamne is a little thing." Then he con
tinued : " But thy eyes, they are Miriamne s ; and so
honest ! I believe them ! Then thou art Miriamne
and I Sir Charleroy?"
"Truly." And again she kissed her father.
" But thou dost not want me a wreck, a pauper! "
" I do, and the boys do ; all Bozrah wants you, needs
"Not thy mother! Oh, no ; I murdered her long
ago ! "
" Not so, dear father."
" I did, indeed. See," and he pointed to the paint
ing, " I ve killed her again, to-day."
" That s but a miserable painting, and I hate it as
much as you do ; but it s harmless, henceforth."
" Are all the devils in it dead ; the vultures that ate
up my heart ? "
" Yes, yes ; who cares for them ? "
"Then I shall get better."
The mad knight suffered himself to be led away
quietly. There was great joy among the Palestineans
that night. And so Miriamne carried the spirit of
Mary, that presided at Cana s feast, into the misery of
that English asylum. She had given her life to min
istering for others, had be<nm in her ow r n home circle,
her life motto : " Hear ye Him " " Whatsoever He saith
396 The Queen of the House of David.
unto you, do it" Now she was rewarded, and began to
hope that there would be the renewal of wedding
chimes at Bozrah, that the wine of its joy would be
renewed and sweetened. She questioned the chaplain
for advice. " Tell the Master there is no wine in the
old stone house, and whatsoever He saith, do it, " was
the young man s answer.
THE STAR OF THE
blocked in the cradle of the deep,
I lay me clown in peace to sleep,
Secure, I rest upon the wave,
For Thou, oh Lord, hast power to save
I know Thou wilt not slight my call,
For Thou dost mark the sparrow s fall,
And calm and peaceful be my sleep,
Rocked in the cradle of the deep.
And such the faith that still were mine
Tho stormy winds swept o er the brine,
Or tho the tempest s fiery breath
Roused me from sleep to wreck and death;
In ocean s caves still safe wiih Thee,
Those gems of immortality,
And calm and peaceful be my sleep
Rocked in the cradle of the deep."
IKE the morning dawn on a calm sea, aftef
a night of fierce storm, so came now great
peace to Miriamne. The heaviest sorrow
l^"~l~r^li of her life was lifting. Her father was re
covering ; his mind becoming rational ; and chief of
Miriamne s joys, was the fact that his convalescence
was accompanied by the appearance of a deep trusting
love for herself. He seemed to lean on his daughter
for help ; cling to her for hope and aim, by every way,
not only to express his sense of dependence on but his
deep arid abiding gratitude toward the patient, chief
398 The Queen of the House of David.
minister, in the mission of his recovery. He seemed
for a long time to be haunted by a fear of relapse into
some great misery that he but dimly remembered
and could not define, beyond a shudder. He dreaded
to be alone, and often clung to his daughter with fur
tive glances of fear, even as a terrified child clings to
its mother. One day, months after he had begun to
be rational, he addressed Miriamne: " We must soon
seek another abiding place, daughter. Our Grand
Master has discharged with overflowing payment,
every debt of hospitality."
"True, father, and I m glad ; the thought for weeks
in my mind, is now in yours. But where shall we
" I think, to France, and immediately."
" Yes, there I ll seek out some of the De Griffins.
They may be able to mend my shattered fortunes, and
if I find none of my kin, I shall not be lacking in any
thing, for there are many of our Teutonic knights.
While they prosper, no want shall harass me or mine."
" Father, I do not want to go to France."
" Why, this is strange ? "
" It seems far away, very far, to me."
"Art thou dreaming, my Syrian Oriole?"
" No, awake ! And very earnest."
" Why, we could walk thither, were it not for the wa
" But I can not go that way ! "
" Well, we can not stay here, so where ? "
" Eastward ; Bozrah ! "
"Wouldst thou ask a spirit, by mercy permitted es
cape from Tophet to return?"
" The Star of the Sea." 399
"Yes, even that, if the spirit had a mission and a
"Thou art nobler, braver than I. I can t trust the
land of giants and vultures."
" The giants and vultures we must meet are in human
forms, and such are everywhere."
" There are over many for the population, in Syria
and beyond it."
" But there have been many changes since you left
that country, especially, in our city," persisted the
" Nothing changes in Palestine or Bozrah, daughter^
except wives, and they only one way ; from bad to
The young chaplain seconded Miriamne s efforts.
Sir Charleroy was spasmodically the stronger, but
Miriamne by patience and persistence prevailed. In
time, she won her cause, and the three took sail for
the Holy Land, the knight protesting that he would
go as far as Acre and no further. The journey was
slow but not monotonous, for the English trader on
which they journeyed stopped at various ports. Cor
nelius on his part was enjoying a serene delight that
had no shadow except when he remembered that voy
aging with Miriamne was to have an end ; Miriamne on
her part had three-fold pleasure ; delight in her com
panionship with the young missionary, delight in the
continued improvement of her father s health, and
greater delight still in the glowing hope of the success
of her mission of peace to her home-circle. As for Sir
Charleroy it suited him well to be sailing. Lie was
ever exhilarated by change ; each day brought it. He
was in theory a fatalist, and the staunch ship pushing
400 The Queen of the House of David.
onward day and night to its destination, carrying all
along, was an expression of the inexorable. Then the
conditions about him rested him, for he was freed from
any need of bracing of his will to choose or execute
any thing. He went forward because the ship went.
That was all and enough. Only once during the voy
age did he assert himself or express a desire to change
his course. THAT WAS WHEN PASSING CYPRUS.
"Here," he cried, "let me disembark! "
Persuasively, Miriamne protested.
"But I must! I ve a mission. I want to curse the
memory of the recreant Lusignan, the coward King of
Jerusalem ; he that clandestinely stole away from
Acre on the eve of those last days! "
" But, father, Cyprus is called the horned island.
I do not like the name ! "
"I ve heard it better named, the blessed isle.
There the hospitable knights had a refuge for pilgrims,
and it still abides."
Just then some of the sailors cried, " Olympus !"
They had caught sight of that ancient mountain, the
fabled home of the gods.
Miriamne adroitly used the cry to divert her father s
mind, saying :
" Let those admire Olympus who will ; as for me, I
prefer holy, fragrant Lebanon."
She pointed eastward, and they saw the dim outlines
of Palestine s famous range. The knight s attention
was fixed on Lebanon, and they sailed past Cyprus
quietly without further objection on his part.
Miriamne and Cornelius, as the night began to settle
down, stood together by the ship s side, feasting on
glimpses of the distant shore. There were signs of z
" The Star of the Sea" 401
coming storm, perceived intuitively by those accus
tomed to the sea, by the young watchers best discerned
in the anxious looks of the seamen.
" The captain says the sky and sea are preparing for
a duel. You noticed how the blue changed to dark
brown in the water this afternoon? He says that, and
the muddy appearance of the sky, betoken a tempest."
" How like polished silver the wings of those gulls
glisten as they career ! " was the maiden s ecstatic reply.
"The wings are as they always are. They glisten
now because they flash against a murky background."
" An omen, Cornelius, for good ! I ll call the sea-
birds hope s carrier-pigeons with messages for us."
" I would we had their wondrous power of outriding
all storms. It is said they can sleep on the waves,
even during a tempest."
" I ve the heart of a sea-gull, to-night."
" And not a dread or pang within ? "
" No, no ! Oh, come, any power, to hurry us to
Acre! I d give way to the merriment of the becalmed
sailors, who whistle for the wind, if I only knew the
notes of their call."
" But the old sea-captain is very grave. See how the
men at his command are lashing up almost every stitch
of our ship s dress."
" Oh, well, I ll be grave, too, to please you ; and yet
I pray that Old Boreas, and all the Boreadal, come in
racing hurricanes, if need be, that we may be sent gal
lantly into longed-for Acre ! "
"A storm at sea is grand in a picture or in imagina
tion ; sometimes, though rarely, in experience. To be
enjoyed it must be terrible ; there s the rub ; it iray
come with overmastering fury."
402 The Queen of the House of David.
"Bird of ill omen ! Why cry as in requiems? As
for me, while you are fearing going down, I ll be think
ing of going forward ! "
" And be disappointed, certainly, on your part, as I
hope I may be mistaken on mine. We may not go
down ; we shall certainly not go forward ! "
" Now, how like a wayward man ! Since you can
not have your way, cross me by predicting my frus
tration ! "
" Oh, do not lay the blame on me! there are broader
shoulders to bear it. Lay the blame on the Taurus
and Lebanon ranges ! "
"Well, this is an odd saying, surely ! "
" Wait awhile, and you will find it very true, as well.
We are to meet to-night, most likely, the Levanter or
off-shore gale, Paul s Euroclydon, charging down from
its mountain castles. Taurus and Lebanon together
form a cave of the winds ! "
"And you seem glad that they are coming to battle
us back ?" spake the maiden, rebukingly.
"Yes, if they prolong our companionship. I can not
rejoice in a speed that hastens our parting."
The last sentence died on the chaplain s paling lips
with a sigh.
The maiden turned her eyes full on the speaker,
then slowly, meditatively answered :
" I shall be sorry, too, at our parting ! "
" Sorry! Ah! that s no word for me, this time:
agonized is better!" was the young missioner s quick
The maiden was pained, but she mastered her feel
ings and pleaded :
" The parting must come some time ; do not let
" The Star of the Sea." . 403
such repinings make it harder for both. It is wiser,
when confronting what one does not desire, but can not
help, to court the balm of forgetfulness. So do I ever,
"And like all attempted silencings of the heart,
by cold philosophy, mocked at last by failure ! "
" My philosophy can not mock me, since it accords
with the stern facts which confront us. I ll be as