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On laying our first volume before the Public, we might perhaps be allowed to appeal, with some degree of pride, to its spirited Illustrations, by an artist of no common talents,-to its varied contents of story and song, bon mot and bijou, anecdote and amusement, memoir and merriment, but that we remember a sage apophthegm of the erudite Doctor Pangloss,
" On their own merits modest men are dumb."
We therefore forbear from doing more than to entreat our •friends to glance at our Illustrations, that we may assure them we mean to abate no jot of our endeavour to render them “ the admired of all observers ;” and refer to
" our varied contents, that we may faithfully promise them that those of our second volume shall not be found wanting in that interest, spirit, and raciness, which we take for granted are prominent qualities in The Olio. Having premised no more than we trust we are entitled to take to ourselves, and promised no more than we can and will perform, we return to our task, and begin our Second Volume with grateful recollections of the success which has attended our first.
THE DEEV ALFAKIR.
The day was closing, and the rich autum
nal beams gilded the pomegranates that To the KEEPSAKE, the most singularly flourished in Sadak's orchard, and the beautiful of all the Annuals, that has mournful cypresses that surrounded it. been presented to the world at this season The heat of the day had been great, and of the year, by the liberality of their the air was fraught with a full and heavy highly deserving publishers, are we langour. The philosopher was seated at indebted for the tale which has insertion a favourite window reading, to catch the within these pages.
Our readers will cool fragrance of the air. He had.withreadily find on its perusal that it bears drawn the exquisitely woven curtains of some analogy to one of the Tales of the peach coloured silk.
His limbs reposed Genii though not of equal merit with the on a divan of downy softness : the most one from which it is evidently borrowed, delightful sherbet sparkled in crystal yet we think that it possesses sufficient vases; and a thousand flowers of every originality to warrant our submitting it to hue expanded their blossoms, and diffused the tastes of our readers.
their fragrance around him. Sadak raised
his head, and cast a glance on the luxu-.
He turned away as he spoke, and
1---SATURDAY, Jan. 12, 1828.
hastened to his most retired apartment. Sadak sprung on his feet. His restless Here by the light of lamps fed with the mind had busied itself in wide researches purest frankincense of Shir, and veiled into the secrets of nature ; and he knew with the spiderlike webs of the Indian much of the occult powers of the universe, loom; he sat, melancholy and buried in though he had holden no communion with reverie.
them. A dim expectation was on his He listened to the breezes, that now mind : it was fulfilled when the ceiling of beyan to arise, as they rustled among the apartment divided, and the Deev the pliant branches of the cypresses, and Alfakir stood before him. He stood in swayed the lofty heads of the date palms. the gloomy beauty of majesty degraded.
Why is it,” said he, “ that all external and obscured. The earthly lights that nature changes from rest to motion, and illuminated the place were extinguished on from motion again to rest, while thy mind, his entrance; a dull glow emitted from Sadak, abides from sun to sun, in un- his body supplied their place, and filled varied and monotonous sadness What the room with its lurid glare. avail the varying seasons, the rejoicing - Sadak," said the Deev, “ thou spring, and the abundant summer to me, wouldst have forgetfulness—of what ? and whose life is one long and dreary why ?” winter ?"
co Of the falsehood of woman, and the Scarcely had he spoken, when the treachery of man. Why! because I wind stayed, and the trees no longer have suffered by them, and suffer yet.' rustled. They ceased not gradually, soft- " I must know more," returned the ening away into calmness; but at once, Deev,“ ere I grant the boon thou wouldst as if arrested by some magician's hand. win. Speak out ; make known thy sufA strange silence came on. The mellow ferings.” song of the late birds was hushed.
" I will not,” replied Sadak, why loud humming bees and buzzing flies were should I rend open the veil for thee, still. The atmosphere was unaccountably enemy of my race and of me? why comest oppressed,' and nature seemed to stand in thou hither; say quickly, and depart." ane of some approaching phenomenon. “ Rash mortal!" answered Alfakir, “I
am not thine enemy, but thy friend. Be- tating whether next to convey himself, his think thee ere I go, I have the power to attention was aroused by the approach of serve thee, and the will.”
a boat. It contained no one, but, self“ The power thou mayst, the will guided, steered its course in a direct line when did a Deey will well to man ?” to the spot were Sadak had stood still
“ Foolish Sadak, ask rather, when did to watch it. What was he to do ? to man will well to himself? The friend that trust himself to such a vessel, for such a betrayed thee had not done so but for thy voyage seemed madness. Yet the blindness, that would madly trust when power, that guided the boat, in an temptation was beyond the power of man unerring line to that spot, might equally to resist. The woman that was loved and guard its course across the ocean. Sadak was false, deceived thee, because thy examined the boat ; it
beauticonfidence was blind, weak, absurd ; fully fitted up. A silken awning was loathsome from its imbecility, even in the suspended over a luxurious couch, and a eyes of its object. Thou wonderest that I, plentiful supply of provisions occupied a thine enemy, should wish the well; but sheltered part of the vessel. On the couch not that thyself should have laboured to was written in letters of gold: “ For Sadak, work to thyself evil.”
the searcher for the waters of oblivion." “ Enough !” said Sadak, “ thou recal. He no longer hesitated, but seated lest too much; but teach me, if thou canst himself in the boat, which instantly sailed to forget.”
away, as before, in a straight line, un“ Listen then,” replied the Deev, “far moved by wind or wave. It proceeded away, in the midst of the ocean, beyond with great rapidity, and passing the straits the points were ship has ever sailed, is an of Ormuz, emerged into the Arabian Sea. island girt with impassable barriers. This The shores of Arabia and of Hindostan, island was the dowry of a princess of our speedily vanished from the eyes of the race; it holds treasures, to which the voyager. The sky was above, and the riches of the East are but as the dust in a sea around him ; land there was none. silken purse. [lere dwell the rulers of He was on the vast plain of the Indian the elements; here are hidden the essences of life; here flow the waters of obli- Three days and three nights his course
continued thus, during which no storm “Give me,” exclaimed Sadak, "give arose, no cloud dimmed the surface of the me of these waters, that I may drink and sky. On the fourth day Sadak discerned
I be at peace.”
afar off, a dim grey speck on the surface “ At peace, surely," answered the of the waters. It came to his strained and Deev, “'but who would have of these wearied eye refreshing as the cool springs waters must seek them."
to the traveller of the desert. " Seek them! and where ? in thine To this object the course of the boat was unapproachable island ? I should gain plainly directed ; and Sadak perceived, much by my quest.”
that he was carried along with still in“Thús hastily judge the children of creased velocity. As he approached, he ignorance and folly. Trust to me, and gazed earnestly on the island, for such he the way shall be easy. Seek at thy perceived it to be, and was terrified. leisure the nearest port of the Southern It seemed a vast rock, the sides of Ocean. Thou shalt there learn more, and which, springing from the bosom of the be brought to the object of thy search. waters, slanted outwardly to a great disSwear to do this, I promise thee the waters tance, veiling the waters beneath them in of oblivion shall be thine."
an impervious gloom ; clothed in which “I swear,” said Sadak.
the unseen waves thundered and boiled “ Farewell then," said the Deev : he with increasing roar. The heart of the spread his broad shadowy wings,—the wanderer sickened, for escape seemed imroof opened for his passage. It closed possible. Here he must close his voyage after him; and the lamps, self-lighted, and his life, in the conflicting waters of burned brightly as before. Sadak heard that angry sea. the rustling of the trees, and the prolonged The boat shot under the black and ruga notes of the nightingale fell mournfully ged sides of the overhanging precipice. on his ear.
Instead of being suddenly overwhelmed He lost no time in preparing for his in the circling waters, or dashed against journey ; and placing his household under the rock, Sadak perceived" that he was the superintendance of a man of rank and carried along softly as before. He heard probity, who was his friend, he departed, the din on either side ; till his hearing was crossed the Lauristan mountains, and nigh extinct, but his own course, though arrived at Nabon, on the Persian Gulf. rapid was smooth and uninterrupted. The Here, while rambling on the shore, medi- gloom by which he was surrounded the eye could not penetrate ; but it appeared desolate and uninhabited. As he roamed to Sadak, that the darkness was peopled through halls paved with the purest marble, by forms that flitted around him, and he beneath roofs of fretted gold supported by thought he heard their laughs rising amid pillars of porphyry and adamant. Sadak the roars of the waters ; now and then too, sighed to think, that all this goodly shew a gleam of red light shot from fissures in should be lost to its banished fabricators. the rock, but without dissolving the dark- He looked around and his eye fell on chests ness into which it pierced, and serving of marble, sealed with the signet of the only to render the horror more hideous. conqueror. Here, century after century,
At length, and in a moment, the dark- pined the imprisoned Deevs, while nature ness was changed to extreme light, issuing was changing in successive ages, and the from the cavern, the boat rushed into a world was fading and reviving again in torrent more violent and fearful than the endless transformation. imagination can conceive. Sadak instinc- Leaving these palaces, and rambling tively closed his eyes with terror, when still farther, he arrived at another desolate their gaze fell on the edge of a preci- region, resembling the first in which he pice, over which the stream threw the had been placed. The same lofty rocks, mass of its waters, that fell, and fell, till the same barren soil, and the same display they broke in mists and thunder in the gulf of elemental violence was there; but in below; but the vessel, instead of being the midst of the place a capacious lake hurried away by the torrent, sailed calmly extended its coal black waters, till, overacross its waters, till it reached the oppo- flowing their natural basin, they fell down site bank. Sadak leaped ashore, and gazed the precipices in rushing torrents. A dim on the scene around him.
cloud of exhalations arose on the margin First he looked with astonishment on the of the lake ; the sun beams withdrew from rocky barrier that surrounded the place, its surface on which the volcanic fires and from beneath which he had emerged. shot a wavering and murky gleam ; Sadak This, rough and jagged with immense felt that these were the Waters of Obliindentations, rose, cliff upon cliff, in dizzy vion. grandeur, till the cloud-vestured heights of He stood on the brink of the wished for Kaf seemed to loose in the comparison. flood, yet hesitated to drink. While he Dim caverns pierced its base, whence deliberated, the noxious vapours mingled issued the elements in their strength. with his breathing ; at once overcome by Volumes of murky and sulphureous flame their influence, he staggered, reeled and were vomited forth by some; torrents fell. From the state of senselessness, he issued from others, and in some Sadak passed into one of uneasy sleep, disturbed believed he heard the roaring of impriso- by a thousand painful visions. The ned winds. The midway rocks were bare calamities of the past, the faithless friend, and black, their summits were the dwel. the selfish mistress, rose before him. He lings of the tempests and the storm. The awoke from his slumbers, calling aloud thunder rolled there as in its on death to free him from the pangs regions, and the lightenings vainly shot of memory.
As he opened his eyes, their fires against rocks coeval with the he found to his horror he was hanging heavens.
over the edge of a rocky shelf, that overSadak turned away to explore some looked a fearful chasm. With all the other portion of the island. He stood at energy of self-preservation, he sprung the bottom of a declivity, he ascended from his situation, and gained a place of with labour to its top, what a sight met safety.
All human splendour, faded Under the influence of the gloom that into nothingness, by the side of the mag- oppressed him, he again approached the nificence that met his view.
lake. What a moment was this! to drink Before him were the marble palaces of of the waters, and lose for ever the the Deevs, built before their conquest by world of the past! Sadak trembled, and a Sultan Soliman. Vast as magnificent, they cold shuddering pervaded his frame. He covered hills, one beyond another, rising felt how dear is the memory even of sortill lost in distance.
row that has been ; how desolate without The face of external nature was it must be the dreary future, until future changed ; trees of freshest foilage clus- things have gone by, and in fading created tered into spreading screens, excluding a new past for the mind to recall and dwell from view the barren terrific region Sadak As these thoughts passed over his bad just left; soft verdure covered the mind, he began to loathe the black and ground and perfumes of the sweetest flowers deadly flood that lay before him ; he gushed before every step.
turned hastily away, and beheld the Deev Sadak entered the eternal dwellings— Alfakir. dwellings now no more, for they were " Welcome Sadak !” he exclaimed;