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Turned o'er the well-worn leaves, where thumb

marks thick on the margin, Like the trample of feet, proclaimed the battle was Ready to sail on the morrow, or next day at latest,



Nothing was heard in the room but the hurrying

pen of the stripling, Busily writing epistles important, to go by the


God willing! Homeward bound with the tidings of all that

terrible winter, Letters written by Alden, and full of the name of


Priscilla, Full of the name and the fame of the Puritan

maiden Priscilla !




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Nothing was heard in the room but the hurrying

pen of the stripling, Or an occasional sigh from the laboring heart of

the Captain, Reading the marvellous words and achievements

of Julius Cæsar. After a while he exclaimed, as he smote with his

hand, palm downwards, Heavily on the page: “A wonderful man was this

Cæsar! You are a writer, and I am a fighter, but here is

a fellow Who could both write and fight, and in both was

equally skilful !” Straightway answered and spake John Alden, the

comely, the youthful: “Yes, he was equally skilled, as you say, with his

pen and his weapons. Somewhere have I read, but where I forget, he Seven letters at once, at the same time writing his

could dictate

memoirs.” “Truly," continued the Captain, not heeding or

hearing the other, “Truly a wonderful man was Caius Julius Cæsar! Better be first, he said, in a little Iberian village, Than be second in Rome, and I think he was right

when he said it. Twice was he married before he was twenty, and

many times after; Battles five hundred he fought, and a thousand

cities he conquered; He, too, fought in Flanders, as he himself has

recorded; Finally he was stabbed by his friend, the orator

Brutus! Now, do you know what he did on a certain occa

sion in Flanders, When the rear-guard of his army retreated, the

front giving way too, And the immortal Twelfth Legion was crowded

so closely together There was no room for their swords ? Why, he

seized a shield from a soldier, Put himself straight at the head of his troops and

commanded the captains,

Calling on each by his name, to order forward the



Then to widen the ranks, and give more room for

their weapons ;

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