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directed the utmost care to the clos- was so completely paralysed by the ing up of every channel of communi- wound, that he became unable to move cation ; and at last no other was left an inch without assistance. The exbut one narrow creek, concealed by traordinary constancy and tenderness reeds, through which small boats and with which from that period his son expert divers introduced parcels of waited on him, and tended him, is begrain and a miserably scanty supply yond description. Young, brave, and of food for the nine thousand perish- energetic, as Floros was, he seemed to ing souls of Messalongbi. But this, have repelled all the noble enthusiasm too, was discovered by the Turks. which would have roused him to rival A few laden boats from Zante, endea- his companions in deeds of heroism, in vouring to enter, were seized, and the order that, day and night, he might men hanged by order of the Pasha. watch by the side of that powerless After this the slightest intercourse old man; and once during the period with the besieged became altogether of their long probation Floros attempt. impracticable ; and then, furious, irre- ed, by an act of the most unexampled sistible, the dreadful famine came rag: daring, to rescue his helpless father ing through the town hand in hand from the certain doom which must with death and disease.
await him, whatever might be the terTen months, as we have said, had mination of the siege. One calm and elapsed. For above twenty days no moonless night (having concealed his rations had been distributed. The intention from every one, in order that people, unsubdued and uncomplaining, none might be involved in his danger) devoured dogs, rats, and sea-weed. the young prince raised the aged One, who yet survives, described the Rayah on his shoulders, and animated feelings with which he sat for hours, by the almost unnatural strength which with a loaded pistol in his hand, watch. he seemed to have derived from his ing by the holes where the mice bad holy purpose, he proceeded to the retreated, till one of them should ap- only entrance, which, as we have said, pear, that he might shoot it and pounce was for a time successfully concealed on the welcome food. To add to the by the besieged, in order that they horror of their situation, they were might receive some scanty supplies aware that Reshid Pasba had been from without. This narrow creek or reinforced from Egypt by a large channel was almost obstructed by the body of African soldiers. Yet, though thick bulrushes which hid it from the the earth around them was strewed enemy, and into its deep water Floros with the sick, the famishing, and the plunged at once with his precious burwounded, these noble Greeks refused then, which, by the most unparalleled even to listen to any offers of capi. exertion, he hoped, as he was an extulation.
pert swimmer, to convey in safety from The Philellenists, whose course we the doomed city. He had over-rated have more particularly traced out in
his physical powers.
When about this sketch, played a worthy part in half way, the weight of the old man's this long-sustained tragedy, whatever almost lifeless body became intolerable. might have been their various motives, He felt that he was sinking, and, with the spring of their actions :- In Vasili, one desperate effort, he barely suca wild ambition; in Lester, a remem- ceeded in regaining the shore he had brance of the dead, which gave him left; for the splash in the water had no rest, till, through the rent of some roused the Turkish sentinels, and they deep wound, his soul rushed forth to were firing briskly on him. So that join them ; in Petros G-, a heart- the result of his rash attempt was in felt patriotism ; in his son, a resolute every way unfortunate; as by this fulfilment of a holy duty. Whatever means the concealed issue, the last it was which bound them to their post, they could depend on, was discovered not one swerved from it, even in their by the enemy, and all communication darkest hour.
between the town and the Greek ves. The dumb Rayah, Petros G-, sels entirely cut off. early in the commencement of the Floros returned with his helpless siege, had his right foot shattered by burden to the powder magazine, where a shot. It was amputated; and though his friends were stationed, but he rehis life was spared, his whole frame joined them only to share with them
in the uncomplaining constancy with rass the enemy in the rear, and he was which they bore indescribable suffer. implored to be in readiness to advance ings. Even the women, of whom half and assist the Messalonghiotes as soon the population was composed, displayed as they should have left the town. It a dauntlessness really extraordinary, was then settled that all the fighting in beings who, though well calculated men, to the amount of three thousand, to endure in patience the greatest their number being made up by a evils, are but seldom able to find the large proportion of those who were physical courage requisite before they slightly wounded or convalescent,were can expose their feeble frames to actual to throw themselves headlong upon the danger. Numbers were daily killed enemy's lines, and cut open a road for when carrying food to the men on the the remainder of the population, six ramparts, but they never shrunk from thousand in all, of which five thousand the task. It was at last, in considera- were women and children. They were tion of the dreadful fate in store for then, dividing into two bodies, to push these poor gentle sufferers, that the and fight their way, as best they besieged determined on putting an end might, through the camp, assisted, to the blockade by one desperate and they fondly hoped, by Kariaskaki and bold attempt, which would either ter- his men, till they reached the hills of minate in the escape of a few, or in Zygos, over which they were to pass, the ruin and destruction of the whole and at last find shelter at Salona. town and its inhabitants. As it was, Such was their plan, and daring as their doom was certain—nothing could it was, there seems little doubt that it save them ; disease and famine would would have been so far successful, but do their work, till, no longer able to for the treachery of a Bulgarian de. muster even soldiers for the walls, the serter, who communicated their proenemy would rush in to terminate the ject to the Pasha, thus enabling him slaughter. Yet even in this desperate to take precautionary measures, though condition, had they been alone, they he refused to believe they could bave would never have run the risk of de- formed any plan so audacious. livering up Messalonghi one day sooner At sunset, on the appointed night, than they could help. But though four bridges were laid over the outthey were indeed true patriots, and ward ditch, formed merely of planks, most brave soldiers, yet were they , and a patrol went round the town to husbands and fathers also, and pre- summon all to be in readiness, as the eminent in their thoughts as might sortie was to take place in two hours. have been in the days of their strength Having crossed the moat, they were and energy, their honour, and glory, directed to lie prostrate with their and patriotism, in the hour of calamity faces to the earth, until the signal was and distress—these are the ties that given that Kariaskaki was in advance tighten and strengthen round the to support them, when they were to stoutest hearts till they felt that for fall on the enemy, and hew out for their sakes one tremendous effort must themselves a path of blood.
The be made, though all perished by it generals all mustered their soldiers, before their time.
and the women, without exception, It was determined that on the night armed themselves. But now the most of the 22d April they would attempt bitter moment of all their twelve a sortie, the result of which must be months of intolerable suffering escape or death. The monk who had
hand for the Messalonghiotes, and the performed over Lester and his adopted sharpest blow they yet had known was sister that strange midnight ceremony, about to be struck in a thousand and whose name was Neophytus, was hearts. When a second time the one of the foremost in organizing this patrol went round, and announced that daring and noble attempt. Their ar- the hour was come, it was found, as rangements were these-A messenger might have been expected, that there was, by some skilful expedient, the was a vast number of unhappy beings details of which are not now known, sick, wounded, and infirm, who were enabled to convey information of their utterly disabled even from making an intention to the Greek general, Kari- attempt to follow their friends in the askaki, who commanded the scattered onset, yet, for the sake of a few, the troops that at times attempted to ha- whole must not perish. It was, as it
were, with one sympathetic thrill of The Philellenists never knew whehorror that the vast multitude under- ther this gallant young man had enterstood and felt at once that these must tained any hope of saving the aged be abandoned to their doom! Nor Rayah, or whether he had but thought dared they delay that terrible deser- his soul would mount to heaven with tion-the hour was come-all was a freer impulse in the smoke of that ready-and this was no time for wailing, sacrifice, but they had no alternative and lamentation, and tearful farewells. save to leave him there—it was impos
But amongst that miserable band sible to delay another moment; and there was, as ever in a crowd, one when they turned away, the fair face, master-mind. It appeared that the that soon was to be so scared and troop of infirm and helpless beings had blackened in the flames, was still buprepared for themselves likewise an ried on the old man's knees. The honourable doom. When the second scene altogether was heart-rending, call was made, it was found that they for many others likewise refused to had assembled -as many, at least, as quit their friends, thus foredoomed to could crawl thither—in the building destruction. containing the powder-magazine ; and But now the moment for this ener. there, in the centre, with heaps of the getic attempt had fully arrived, and the aged and wounded round him, sat whole population of the ill-fated MesPetros G-, holding in his hand a salonghi, with the exception of those lighted match, and written in his face, who now tenanted the powder magaas well as in that of every individual zine, issued in profound silence from present, might be read a stern and the city. They crossed the moat-the awful resolution. It was indeed a soldiers first, then all the women and strange spectacle, that of this decrepit children—and lay down quietly, with old man-dumb, paralysed, his body their faces to the earth, according to having the appearance of a corpse, previous order ; whilst before them, and being indeed as helpless and as stretching far beyond where their eyes powerless, with, from the eye alone, could reach, were the dark ranks of the soul glowing forth as strong, as the vast Turkish host. Careful as full of ardour and enthusiasm, as in they were to prevent a sound reaching the best days of his youth.
the ears of the enemy, one piteous Floros stood near him, and when his murmur could not be quelled-it was companions summoned him to follow the weeping of the women for the them, he advanced a few steps, and condemned band they had left in the seemed for a moment full of a terrible town; and long before the signal had irresolution. He looked from his been given that Kariaskaki was in adhelpless father to his brave compa- vance, and that they were to rise and nions ; death sat by the one, life bec. charge through the lines of the foe, koned to him from amongst the others- that sound had aroused the Turks, life in the summer-time of youth, with and they commenced pouring incesten thousand joys in his right hand- sant volleys of a most galling fire upon with love, and hope, and friendship, the rampart, beneath which the Mesand renown strewing their glittering salonghiotes were crouching close on flowers upon its path ; and death, sud- one another. den and unavailing, ere he had tasted Much of the shot passed over their one drop of the world's cup of plea- heads, otherwise all must have perish. sure, or tried the powers of his soul ed; but, as it was, numberless were for happiness. One moment he stood, the passive sufferers who never rose as though the young warm blood ca- from that spot. One whole hour they reering through his beating heart were submitted to lie there, with death cacraving madly for the full term of the reering over their heads, and hundreds existence meted out to him, the next expiring unmurmuring around them; he pressed his hand upon his eyes, to but no signal for the general move. shut out the vision of the gay, glad ment was given. At last, their posiworld, and rushed back to his father, tion became intolerable; the moon who had not power to welcome him suddenly burst forth from among the with a smile. There, falling at his clouds—a circumstance favourable to feet, he buried his face in his knees, the attack, but fatal if they remained and so remained.
exposed by its light to a surer aim. A
whisper ran like an electric shock breasts a horrible eagerness to exter. through the ranks that now was their minate to the uttermost the lingering time. With one tremendous shout of wreck of the gallant Messalonghiotes; “ Death to the barbarians-on, on to but if there was but one terrible means Jiberty and life,” they sprung to their by which Greeks could escape the feet, their muskets in their hands, their ignominy of death by the Moslem sabres slung to their wrists! As knife, that means they were certain to though moved by a simultaneous im- adopt. Suddenly a most tremendous pulse, they darted forwards, and flung explosion was heard—the powder-ma. ihemselves in the midst of the enemy. gazine blew up with a dreadful crash. Not the whole force of the Turks, A sheet of fire burst forth from its with their pealing cannon and the ruins, and, borne up on its wings of bayonets of the Arabian soldiers, could soaring flame, the brave spirits of the resist this tremendous shock. In a Hellenic martyrs escaped for ever from very few minutes their trenches were the torments of their earthly existpassed, their infantry scattered, and
For many hours the conflagrathe artillerymen slaughtered at their tion raged, and one of those who stood guns. The Moslems seemed utterly with the army of fugitives on the hill paralysed by this sudden and daring of Zygos, himself a gallant Greek attack; they allowed a wide space to soldier, described how they heard, as be cleared, and now the brave Messa- they looked back, the prolonged shriek longhiotes pushed in a solid mass across which rose from the death-agony of a the plain, headed by two Roumeliote multitude, and saw the “green smoke" chieftains, both of whom bad passed ascending up to heaven from that fu. their seventieth year.
neral pile; and never, surely, did Onward they passed, with a living more awful incense roll up before the wall on either side, and every step on throne of Eternal Justice. Then the a corpse; but behind, thundering columns of thick, dark smoke assemafter, came the Mahometan horsemen, bled together, as though marshalled by and they, too, cut a terrible path for an unseen leader in the air, and spread themselves through the midst of the themselves out over the burning city fugitive women. Every inch of their like a vast black pall; and then the track was gained by the life of those livelong night it hung, whilst sky and helpless ones— infants lay trodden air were full of lurid light; and when down beneath their horses' feet, and the rising sun dispelled the horrors of the mothers were stabbed at they pass- the midnight darkness, and the fresh ed—and thus struggling, mingling, breeze lifted off that floating veil, it devouring one another, the contend- disclosed beneath, the scathed and ing hosts raged over the plain, like ruined city become the mighty bier of monstrous serpents writhing about, a thousand dead. and twining together their length in a The fugitives reached Salona in deadly fight. At last, the troops of safety. With the siege of MessalonKariaskaki came to the rescue; the ghi, as is well known, the more strik horsemen were driven back, and those ing and important events of the Greek of the Greeks who yet survived suc- revolution terminate. ceeded in reaching the Zygos moun- Lester, the Englishman, became tain, beyond which lay Salona, their much attached to the country for hoped-for refuge. As they arrived at which he had fought. He never the foot of the hill, and paused one in- quitted it, nor had he any reason to stant, panting and exhausted, they repent, that a few holy words uttered turned to look back, and perceived over him in the church of Mount that the Turks, being thus forced to Chaon at midnight had given him a abandon their pursuit of those who friend, who was, in very deed and had so miraculously escaped them, truth, a sister to him unto his life's were now directing their whole fury end. All that human care and ten. against the unfortunate city, that for derness could do to cheer the life of twelve long months had resisted their one who must needs traverse the por. obstinate attack. They were pouring tal of the tomb before he could behold into the town along with the Arabian his one only hope transformed to joy, and Egyptian soldiers, and the fierce Cyllene did for her deliverer. He spirit of revenge had kindled in their never, however, altogether recovered
the effects of his physical sufferings at Messalonghi. One early spring he was seized with a frantic desire to return to England, that he might again behold the green grave laid in the shade of the Gothic porch, with the waving trees bending over it. His wish came too late.
On the bright but arid shore of a deserted part of the coast of Greece, there is a lonely mound, covered over only with the sparkling sands, and laid at the foot of a broken column, that once has stood within a Heathen temple. No Gothic church, with its sweet ringing chimes — no waving trees, or soft fresh dews-only above the eternal blue of the eastern sky, and all around the dashing of the sun.
lit waters on the burning rocks ; but there, a short time since, and it may be even now, over that stranger's nameless grave, a living monument is seen to bend-a monument recording, better than the written stone, his generosity and gentleness of heart. By night, Cyllene makes that mound her pillow; by day she decks it with the starry sea-flowers, or branches of the solitary palm. In life, he was her only friend-in death, he is her only
Her dwelling is hard by, but this is the home of her heart. She never weeps for him, for she knows how his spirit supplicated to be free ; only at times she looks up to heaven with an impatient
* The history of the young Greek slave is no fiction. When the writer left Greece, she was supposed to be still living in the home she had made for herself by the tomb of her deliverer. There is only this difference, that he was in reality a Frenchman, and not an Englishman.