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See, how bright they are burnished, as if in an arsenal
That is because I have done it myself, and not left it to others.
Serve yourself, would you be well served, is an excellent adage;
So I take care of my arms, as you of your pens and your inkhorn.
Then, too, there are my soldiers, my great, invincible
Twelve men, all equipped, having each his rest and his matchlock,
Eighteen shillings a month, together with diet and pil
And, like Cæsar, I know the name of each of my soldiers !
[This he said with a smile, that danced in his eyes, as the sunbeams
Dance on the waves of the sea, and vanish again in a mo
Alden laughed as he wrote, and still the Captain continued:]
Look! you can see from this window my brazen howitzer
High on the roof of the church, a preacher who speaks to the purpose,
Steady, straightforward, and strong, with irresistible logic,
Orthodox, flashing conviction right into the hearts of the heathen.
Now we are ready, I think, for any assault of the In
Let them come, if they like, and the sooner they try it
Let them come if they like, be it sagamore, sachem, or
Aspinet, Samoset, Corbitant, Squanto, or Tokamahamon !
[Long at the window he stood, and wistfully gazed on the landscape,
Washed with a cold gray mist, the vapory breath of the eastwind,
Forest and meadow and hill, and the steel-blue rim of the
Lying silent and sad, in the afternoon shadows and sunshine. Over his countenance flitted a shadow like those on the land
Gloom intermingled with light; and his voice was subdued with emotion,
Tenderness, pity, regret, as after a pause he proceeded:]
Yonder there, on the hill by the sea, lies buried Rose
Beautiful rose of love, that bloomed for me by the way
She was the first to die of all who came in the May
Green above her is growing the field of wheat we have sown there,
Better to hide from the Indian scouts the graves of our
Lest they should count them and see how many already have perished!
[Sadly his face he averted, and strode up and down, and was thoughtful.
Fixed to the opposite wall was a shelf of books, and among
Prominent three, distinguished alike for bulk and for bind
Bariffe's Artillery Guide, and the Commentaries of Cæsar
Out of the Latin translated by Arthur Goldinge of London, And, as if guarded by these, between them was standing the
Musing a moment before them, Miles Standish paused as if doubtful
Which of the three he should choose for his consolation and comfort,
Whether the wars of the Hebrews, the famous campaigns of the Romans,
Or the Artillery practice, designed for belligerent Christians. Finally down from its shelf he dragged the ponderous Roman, Seated himself at the window, and opened the book, and in
Turned o'er the well-worn leaves, where thumb-marks thick on the margin,
Like the trample of feet, proclaimed the battle was hottest. 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 awhile 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
Who could both write and fight, and in both was equally
Yes, he was equally skilled, as you say, with his pen
Somewhere have I read, but where I forget, he could
Seven letters at once, at the same time writing his mem
["Truly," continued the Captain, not heeding or hearing the other,]
Truly a wonderful man was Caius Julius Cæsar!
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 en
Then to widen the ranks and give more room for their
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 hurrying pen of the stripling
Writing epistles important to go next day by the Mayflower, Filled with the name and the fame of the Puritan maiden
Finally closing his book, with a bang of the ponderous cover, Sudden and loud as the sound of a soldier grounding his
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
Always ready to hear whatever pertains to Miles Stand
[Thereupon answered the Captain, embarrassed, and culling his phrases:]
'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