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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

could dictate Seven letters at once, at the same time writing

his 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

occasion 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 ensigns; Then to widen the ranks, and give more room

for their weapons ;

So he won the day, the battle of something-or

other.

That's what I always say; if you wish a thing

to be well done, You must do it yourself, you must not leave

it to others !”

All was silent again; the Captain continued

his reading. Nothing was heard in the room but the hurry

ing pen of the stripling Writing epistles important to go next day by

the May Flower, Filled with the name and the fame of the Pu

ritan maiden Priscilla; Every sentence began or closed with the name

of Priscilla, Till the treacherous pen, to which he confided

the secret, Strove to betray it by singing and shouting the

name of Priscilla !

Finally closing his book, with a bang of the

ponderous cover, Sudden and loud as the sound of a soldier

grounding his musket, Thus to the young man spake Miles Standish

the Captain of Plymouth: “ When you have finished your work, I have

something important to tell you. Be not however in haste; I can wait; I shall

not be impatient!" Straightway Alden replied, as he folded the

last of his letters, Pushing his papers aside, and giving respectful

attention : “ Speak; for whenever you speak, I am always

ready to listen, Always ready to hear whatever pertains to

Miles Standish.” Thereupon answered the Captain, embarrassed,

and culling his phrases:

66'Tis not good for a man to be alone, say the

Scriptures. This I have said before, and again and again

I repeat it ; Every hour in the day, I think it, and feel it,

and say it. Since Rose Standish died, my life has been

weary and dreary ; Sick at heart have I been, beyond the healing

of friendship. Oft in my lonely hours have I thought of the

maiden Priscilla.

She is alone in the world; her father and

mother and brother

Died in the winter together; I saw her going

and coming, Now to the grave of the dead, and now to the

bed of the dying, Patient, courageous, and strong, and said to

myself, that if ever

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