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Ned. " I *11 be aisier when I get this testa-
ment off me mind.*'

" So you will, true,** she said. " I think
you *11 find it will aise your mind a great
deal.*'

" Now, then, Masther," he said ; and the
master got his pen in readiness.

"That line of houses, my property, on
the west side of Fifth Avenue, between
Sixty-fourth and Sixty-eighth streets, both



arty, who was hovering
around him with bottle
and glass.

" No, no,** Ned said
buoyantly ; " I am fit
for it, if it was double
as much. I *11 soon be
through now.

" Now, then, Masther
MacGinley, them nine-
teen houses, my sole an*
only property on the
south side of Fulton
street, from Broadway
westward, inclusive,
with all the rights, titles,
and pri\aleges apper-
taining thereunto, I be-
stow, will, bequeath,
and endow upon my
dearly beloved cousin
Eilis Gildea, alias Mrs.
Donal M*Groarty, her
heirs, an* assigns for-
ever.**

Again Ned was over-
come by the coughing
fit, and was promptly
cured once more by the
infallible remedy.

" Thank ye, Mrs.

M'Groarty,'* he said ;

"thank ye,** handing

her back the empty

MASTER MacGinley brought his ink. glass. " May God pros-

HORN, A PAIR OF PENS, MANY per ye, an* vour hand

SHEETS OF FOOLSCAP, AND !,«,™ !r^ or^^r.*,, f m.r^

ALL HIS IMPORTANCE- ^^^er go empty! Give

Masther MacGinley a
small dhrop ; for writin* testaments is drier
work nor lime-bumin*.**

But Mrs. M*Groarty was not going to
forget Master MacGinley.

" Now, then," said Ned Mulvanny, "let
us proceed, Masther MacGinley. To my
dearly beloved cousin Bridget Mary Dur-
neen— " Here Mrs. M'Groarty coughed
hard; and repeated' the significant remark
three times ; but it was wasted.

" Bridget Mary Dumeen,** the ever un-



.^.ca;:;;



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MRS. M'GROARTY'S INHERITANCE



763



observant great man repeated to Master
MacGinley, as he deliberately watched
him pen the name, " her heirs, an' assigns
forever, I give, bequeath, and bestow—"

Mrs. M'Groarty was seized with an un-
controllable fit of coughing, one effect of
which was that she had to support her
hands upon the table while it lasted, thus
eflFectively preventing the master from
continuing his writing until the attack had
subsided.

" —give, bequeath, an' bestow," the still
unobservant Ned coolly repeated, while
Master MacGinley as coolly penned it,
"the sum of—"

Mrs. M'Groarty, good Christian that
she was and ever had been, here resignedly
bent her head.

" —the sum of one shilling," said Ned
Mulvanny.

On a convenient chair Mrs. M*Groarty
collapsed. She silently clasped her hands
and lifted her eyes, as thanking Heaven
for some signal favor bestowed upon her.

"Finally and lastly," Ned Mulvanny
went on, "on my dearly beloved cousin
Eilis Gildea, alias Mrs. M*Groarty, her
heirs, and assigns forever, I endow and
bequeath all the gold, silver, and cash in
my house, possession, or person, or in any
other way belonging to me, as well as all
the gold, silver, and cash owed to me at
the time of my death, as well as all my
personal belongings, articles, and posses-
sions, as well as, furthermore, any other
cash, property, or real estate that may have
at the present time escaped my failing
memory.

" An* this, in the presence of witnesses,
I hereby declare to be my last an' final
solemn will an' testament. In witness
whereunto I sign my name, Edward, alias
Ned, Mulvanny."

About these princely gifts that he was
showering upon his dearly beloved cousin,
Ned Mulvanny, still after the manner of
all great and wealthy men, seemed as in-
different as if he had only been giving a
friend a pipe of tobacco.

On her part, diplomatic Mrs. M'Groarty,
putting a due restraint upon her feelings,
and refraining from covering Ned with
thanks and gratitude, let him see that she
had a soul above worldly wealth.

And herein did the greatness of the
woman appear.

Ned Mulvanny, who heretofore had



been suffering much from lack of care and
attention, never had reason to complain of
either from that day forward. For solici-
tously and attentively and perseveringly
Mrs. M'Groarty, either by herself or
through the members of her family, nursed
and cared him night and day, and kept him
ever and well supplied with the luxuries,
delicacies, and dainties of the place and
season. Blood, she used to remind Ned
at times, when, in his own humble way, he
apologized for the great trouble he was
giving her— blood, as he himself had said,
was thicker than water, and if he had been
a beggar on the roadside— let alone her
cousin — Mrs. M'Groarty could not and
would not do for him less than she was
doing.

" I 'm sure of it, ma'am ; I 'm sure of
it," Ned Mulvanny asseverated; "for I
know the good an' kindly, an' charitable
heart that 's thumping in your bosom,
ma'am."

It was not entirely against Mrs. M'Gro-
arty's wish that the parish got wind of her
good luck and of Bridget Mary Dumeen's
misfortune ; and if, from that day forward,
Mrs. M'Groarty carried her head a bit
higher than usual and was patronizing to
her former friends and gossips, it was not
to be wondered at by anybody, and was
not wondered at by anybody, that a woman
who had come into such astonishing good
fortune as she should so comport herself.
Moreover, now, Mrs. M'Groarty was a
woman to be courted and not criticized.

As was becoming, also, Mrs. M'Groarty
not only dressed herself better, and sent
out her children in " better rotation," but
Donal, also, good man, was forcibly de-
prived of his old coats at a point where,
formerly, they would have been only enter-
ing upon the first of the many stages of
renovation and reformation which they
were wont to undergo, before — when no
shred of the original coat remained — they
were finally discarded. Thus Donal was
made a proud man in spite of himself,
and he was the most ill-fitting and the un-
easiest proud man that the parish had wit-
nessed for many a long year.

When Bridget Mary Dumeen had the
misfortune to meet Mrs. M'Groarty upon
the road, she snaffled and tossed her head,
and affected to go past disdainfully, thus
wantonly aggravating Mrs. M'Groarty,
who naturally expected Bridget Mary to



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'YE MUST TAKE A WEENIE DHROP OF THIS'



be both humble and downcast under the
circumstances.

The asthma, bad as it may be, is a
lingering complaint, and Ned Mulvanny
was a tough "parcel of property, anyhow:
so that, before he died, Mrs. M'Groarty,
if she had not been an exceptional woman,
might well have run out of stamina and
broken down under the excessive state
which her great good fortune naturally
compelled her to carry. Preparing for
eventualities she had, at the outset, taken
down the address of Ned's lawyers, " Com-
stock & Bedlow, Attomeys-at-law, 195
Broadway, New York City"— copied
down this address from the envelops of
the frequent letters which, very naturally,
as it seemed to her, he was receiving from
them ; and when, at length, after long and
tedious and patient waiting, Ned Mul-
vanny finally went the way of all flesh and
had the last green quilt drawn over him
and copiously watered by Mrs. M*Gro-
arty's tears, there was no time lost in
informing Comstock & Bedlow, 195
Broadway, New York City, that Eilis
Gildea, alias Mrs. Donal M*Groarty, was,
by the last will and testament of the de-
ceased Ned Mulvanny, heir to all of his
cash, property, and belongings; that she



was desirous of having his affairs settled
up without any unnecessary delay; that
she wished a statement from them and
desired to know whether it would be
necessary for herself or a representative
to go to New York in person to arrange
matters with them.

In due time, to her delight, a reply, in
the envelop so familiar to Mrs. M*Groarty,
arrived, and behold ye it ran thus :

/p5 Broadway y New York City^
October 24, 18—
Mrs. D. M'Groarty.

Dear Madam: We beg to acknowledge
receipt of yours of the 4th inst., and to thank
you for same. We congratulate you upon
inheriting the estate of the deceased, Mr. Ned
Mulvanny, and sincerely hope that it repre-
sents something very substantial.

We cordially appreciate your offer to settle
his account with us, which account we had
been forwarding him from time to time for
some years past, without getting a response,
due, as now we clearly see, to his declining
health and prolonged illness.

We beg to thank you for your offer to come
in person (or by representative) to arrange
with us, but wish to say that such kindness is
quite unnecessary.

We wish to explain that we did not press
for payment of this account before his depar-



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HOMEWARD BOUND



765



ture for home, accepting his statement that he
was about to realize some landed property
which he possessed in Ireland, and that our
claim would be the first satisfied.

We have pleasure in inclosing our statement
of account for work done for him in the fall
preceding his departure for home, from which



statement you will observe that the amount
due us is $213.50, or, in English money, at the
present rate of exchange, £4^ igs. sd., a draft
for which, at your early convenience, will very
much oblige, dear- madam,

Your faithful servants,

Comstock 6t* Bedhw,



n£s2^



HOMEWARD BOUND

ON THE RETURN TO AMERICA OF THE REMAINS
OF JOHN PAUL JONES

BY EDMUND CLARENCE STEDMAN



WITH proud, uplifted head
The fair Republic claims her dead ;
With outstretched hands— the hands he
fought to free—
Awaits, oh, not in ruth,
The lover of her youth,
Her Bayard of the sea.
Let the sea once more caress him,
And the land he loved possess him ;

For now the years are sped —
The proud Republic claims her dead.



Atlantic waves, that smiled
Of old so oft to greet your child,
List not to hear his battle-orders ring ;
Care not to break his sleep.
But softly, softly bring
Your nursling of the deep.
With his birthright flag above him,
To the shores that own and love
him,—
Of old their rover wild,
Now held in slumber as a child.



The oaken ship that won
His storied sea-fight, gun to gun,
To Freedom's flag its red baptism gave.
Aflame, still made reply.
Fought on to victory,
Then plunged beneath the wave.
Let the squadrons close around him
Till the Nation's hands have crowned
him.
Whose fierce sea-fight he won
'Twixt the setting and the rising of
the sun.

Not far from ocean's strand,
His tomb, made lasting by her hand,
Shall henceforth tell within the guarded
field
Of him who that dread night
Began anew the fight,
And, sinking, could not yield.
Down the lengthened line bequeath it,
Let our sailor sons enwreathe it,

And the challenge and command
Be heard anear it and the strand.



Erect, with shining head,
The great Republic claims her dead ;
Nor, in that day when every stripe and star

Proclaims the reign of Peace,

Shall honor to him cease

Nor Fame his laurel mar.
Though no battle-peal awake him.
Time upon its scroll shall make him

One of earth's heroes dead,
Whose deeds that golden day more swiftly sped.

July 12, 1905



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OLE BULL AS A PATRIOTIC FORCE



BY MARGARET E. NOBLE




HE national impulse, as dis-
tinguished from the personal
and romantic, plays a larger
part in the history of art than
is often realized. It was the
energy of Marathon, and the need to make
a nation out of Hellas, that spoke in the
plays of ^schylus. " Nine dumb cen-
turies," it has been finely said, "found a
voice in Dante." Who shall say how far
Giotto, Shakspere, and Bach were aware,
in hke manner, of bringing whole realms
out of the sphere of silence, and conferring
upon them the franchise of the world ? Ole
Bull's had the good fortune to be one of
those world-voices in which perfect com-
mand of a difficult technic is made, in its
turn, only the instrument of a higher im-
pulse, the heart of a whole people pressing
forward to the utterance.

When the present generation was bom,
Norway was already one of the recognized
centers of art-consciousness in Europe.
The plays of Ibsen, the works of Bjomson
and Jonas Lie, and the compositions of
Edvard Grieg have prepared us all for
the facts that we observe as soon as we
visit the country— the joy of the peasants
in wild and beautiful landscape, their keen
enthusiasm regarding works of art and
artists, and their spontaneous utterance of
themselves in music. No one who wit-
nessed in Bergen, in 1901, the unveiling
of Binding's statue of Ole Bull could have
failed to be struck by the Hellenic element
in the character of the Bergensers, whose
very feet spoke the language of delight,
beating time to the voice in a sort of dan-
cing march, as each new group caught its
first glimpse of the fine bronze.

It must have been on just such a day
that Cimabue's great masterpiece was car-
ried through the streets of thirteenth-cen-
tury Florence, and old men wept for joy



that they had lived to see the painter's
brush express so much. Similar festivals,
though subtler-toned, are known even now
among the simple peoples of Asia, when
the proud master-workman seats him for
the day beside his newly achieved tower,
or pillar, or door, and passers-by linger to
see his handicraft and to throw the small
coin of acknowledgment and praise into
the bowl that rests beside him. Such days
are alike wherever they may occur, because
they are everywhere the celebration of a
single truth— the communion of the whole
people in the attainment of genius.

In the case of Binding's statue, however,
it was not alone the work of the artist to
which the people responded with such
ardor. The peasants had poured in from
the country-side, and, at the moment of
the unveiling, a great choir, under the
conductorship of Edvard Grieg, burst into
song, in direct invocation of Ole Bull ;
everywhere his picture was seen ; and the
hours resounded with speeches and even
hymns addressed to him. In good sooth,
the figure of Ole Bull stands to Norway
almost as the symbol of her nationality
itself. Every year, at dawn of the 1 7th of
May, the anniversary of the adoption of
the Constitution in 1814, the school chil-
dren of Bergen carry the Norwegian colors
in procession, first to the grave of Presi-
dent Christie, who framed the Constitution,
and then to that of him who awakened
the national consciousness, their never-to-
be-forgotten wizard of the bow.

For the land was not yesterday as to-day.
That pine-clad coast so close upon the
arctic circle— the hearth of the midnight
sun— knew not at all times the strength of
its own destiny. Less than a century ago,
the Norwegian people regarded the Danish
tongue as the medium of polite communi-
cation, thought of themselves as provin-



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OLE BULL AS A PATRIOTIC FORCE



767



cials, and did not dream of aspiring to any
serious place in the world of European
thought ; and the main force in the chang-
ing of all this was the burning enthusiasm
and dogged faith of Ole Bull and those
whom he was able to gather about him.

With two of the sacraments of the na-
tional life he was, from the first, very
closely connected. One of these is the
**pure flag," as it is called,
meaning the flag which carries
the colors of Norway alone,
unmixed with those of Swe-
den, and the other is the ob-
servance of " Norway Day,"
on the 1 7th of May. The im-
portance of the first of these
will be understood only by
those who know what ban-
ners mean in Norway. They
are not, in that country, used
chiefly as international signal-
ing apparatus, but regarded
rather as ikons. Every house
has its flagstaff, and on all
occasions of festivity the flag
is flown. Or when a foreign
guest is received at dinner,
hospitality is naturally and
gracefully expressed by in-
cluding the flag of his country
among the table-decorations.
Such customs come easily to
a people whose life is spent
so much upon the sea, and
whose ancestors were the
vikings, or harbor-men.

It must be remembered
that the psychological prob-
lem of the national sense in
Norway is, to keep itself at
once friendly to and yet wholly individual
and distinct from that of Sweden. The
Norwegians have always refused to con-
sider themselves as anything but a free na-
tion accepting the sovereignty of the Swe-
dish king ; and they showed their teeth so
plainly in this matter when, in the year
1814, they found themselves divided from
Denmark, that they forced Bemadotte
himself to subscribe to their view and ac-
quiesce in the independence of the Nor-
wegian Constitution and Parliament.

Ole Bull and the men who, twenty years
later, were young with him could not
tolerate the fact that the flag then in
common use was the Union standard



Drawn by Otto Bacher
OLE BULL'S VIOLIN



bearing the Norwegian colors in a minor
position.

The festival of Norway Day in like man-
ner will be understood by any one who
has once seen it for himself. Salutation of
the national heroes, hymns and songs to
the national idea, the celebration of Olym-
pic games, contests on field and fjord,
processions with banners, and a constant
refrain of the national an-
them—all these features fall
into due relation round the
central scene, the prow of
a viking ship raised in the
town square at noon as plat-
form for the speakers of the
day.

The story of the first cele-
bration of Norway Day, in
the year 1829, when Ole
Bull met Wergeland the poet
in Christiania, one carry-
ing his violin, the other the
pure Norwegian colors, only
to be hooted and pursued
with flying missiles through
the streets, and Wergeland
severely wounded by the
police, seems now hardly
credible. But it has been the
devotion of a lifetime, not
the courage of a moment,
that has made the day what
it is.

In succeeding years, Ole
Bull would make every pos-
sible effort to reach Bergen
for the occasion, once going
to the length of paying five
hundred dollars for the privi-
lege of detaining a passen-
ger-boat at Hull for three hours. Always
he was to be found in the procession,
cheering the races and games, and play-
ing in the open square for the thou-
sands who would assemble to hear him
there.

Throughout his life Ole Bull was sen-
sitive to anything that could add honor
to the day, and a story still lingers about
his name of an anniversary spent in some
distant land, and a long reverie suddenly
broken by the words, " Yes, it is Norway's
birthday. Fit that we say but few words."
This success in formulating the ritual of
the national life, however, was only the
blossom of a deeper growth— a whole life's



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768



THE CENTURY MAGAZINE



passion for his country and her people, and
definite and clear thought regarding the
importance of the sentiment of national-
ity. The question must needs arise, then,
Whence did Prometheus fetch his gift of
fire ? This question leads us to pass swiftly
in review the life of Ole Bull.

Undoubtedly he had from the beginning
that passionate and spontaneous love for
place and people that we can see only, in
such measure, in the childhood of men of
genius. A fifteen-mile run along a moun-
tain road is no small feat, yet the return
of the Saturday holiday, during school
years, often saw the long-legged boy on
his solitary race out of Bergen and back,
"just for a peep " at the vale of Lyseklo-
ster, where, in the pastures between the
mountains and the shore, the ruins of a
Cistercian abbey overlook the fjord, and
the old manor-house, with its gardens and
its Turkish roses, stands guard over both.
Long years later, when his hair was gray,
the island of Lysoen, visible from these
Cistercian "Cloisters of Light," became
his home, and it was in the midst of the
much-loved scene, to the music of Mozart's
" Requiem,'* that he died.

But all this would have done no more
than to make him a poet. What was it that
made him undeniably the greatest political
influence in the history of modem Nor-
way? The riddle is easy to read. Although
he voiced the peasants, his own voice was
that of no peasant, but one of the most
severely learned of European utterances.
His instrumental mastery was complete,
and the technical difficulties of his com-
positions have left them for the most part
unperformable. But Mozart was his chosen
theme, worshiped with such an ardor of
consecration that the whole range of his
works had for him no secret. His fame,
therefore, was of that order that opens all
doors. Statesmen and chief captains like
Bismarck and Von Moltke were his inti-
mates, and he was their confidant. To
world-artists like Liszt, Chopin, and Men-
delssohn he was own brother. Indeed, a
curious physical resemblance between
Liszt and himself led to many amusing
conireUmps on this score. And sovereigns,
diplomatists, and great nobles were all
proud to name him among their friends.
In him, then, Norway had found one who
could stand for her in the highest ranks of
the nations, learn for her the secrets of state-



craft, and recover in her behalf the trick of
thinking like a king. For this is one of the
losses entailed on a people who are gov-
erned by foreigners from a foreign seat,
that they forget to think of their country
as a whole, the habit that is the secTet of
rulers.

Yet it was only as a man, and not by
any means as a politician, that an autocrat
could claim the friendship of the distin-
guished artist. His own sovereign felt
that he had cause for grave offense when
the news reached Stockholm, in 1848, of
his heading a procession in Paris to present
the Norwegian colors to Lamartine. But
even royal anger could not resist the good
stories told on the next visit, and the king
stood biting his lip at the careless bonhomie
of Ole Bull, as he turned suddenly and
said, " By the way, sire, you should have
been with us the other day in Paris, when
we went to acclaim Lamartine."

Few tales are told, indeed, which are
finer than that of the encounter, in earlier
years, with this king's father, the old Ber-
nadotte himself. The king had referred to
the Norwegians as " my Poles," at which
Ole Bull, drawing himself up, inquired,
" When has a Norwegian shown himself
disloyal to the king ? " Then, without
waiting for an answer, he announced
that he must at once take leave. Upon
this, the king turned to him with an im-
perious, " I command you to stay ! " But
the violinist shrugged his shoulders and
replied : " Then I will see, sire, whether a
Norwegian remains free in the palace of
the King of Sweden ! " At this, as Ole
Bull would tell, when recounting the scene,
there came into the face of the monarch
the most winning smile he had ever seen
on a human countenance, and, putting out
his hand impulsively, Bemadotte ex-
claimed : " Nay ; I beg you to remain. A
prince should hear the opinions of all his
people." And the talk which then resulted
was the basis of deep confidence on both
sides.

It is said that the first time Bernadotte
heard Ole Bull's " Polacca Guerriera," its
martial character so stirred the warrior
spirit of the old king, to whom the music
of battle was ever the sweetest, that he
rose while it was played and remained
standing to the end.

In later years it was a natural expression
of Ole Bull's affection for the royal house



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OLE BULL AS A PATRIOTIC FORCE



769



that on the eve of his departure for Egypt,
in 1876, he should take tea privately with
the king and queen. They asked to be spe-
cially remembered at the Great Pyramid ;
and it was always a happy memory to him
afterward that when, in obedience to this



even the friendship of crowned heads was
effective only to make him dream of na-
tionality and a national art for his native
land. He had started out as a student on
his first foreign tour the day after the
original celebration of Norway Day, with



From a photutfraph lent by Mrs. Ole Bull. Half-tone plate cnjiraved by U . Aikiiiau

STEPHAN BINDINGS STATUE OF OLE BULL, BERGKN, NORWAY



request, he had taken out his violin on the
summit of the pyramid and i)layed " The
Herd-girl's Reverie," two wild swans, as
the last notes died, rose from its base and
flew away to the north.

It is necessary, however, to look at the
intellectual character of the Kurope of Ole
Bull's day in order to understand deeply
why no favor of fortune could avail to
shake the steadfastness of his love and
hope for the common people, and why



the "pure flag," in Christiania in 1829.
This is significant of the fact that the



Online LibraryA. B. (Alfred Barton) RendleThe Century → online text (page 94 of 120)