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it is respecting the power that you possess of reading the thoughts of man?"
“ On such terms as we are now, Vincenzio, I cannot so well read your thoughts as I could in any other situation. It is enough that there be any compact between me and a man, to place that man, during the entire period of our agreement, beyond the reach of the power that I exercise over those who are less under my im. mediate control.”
“ You mean to say, for instance,” replied Vincenzio, “ that you cannot in any respect do me any personal injury?”
“Why such a question ?”
“Oh," said Vincenzio, laughing, “the fact is, I intend to give you checkmate presently, and I wished to know if I could do it with impunity-that's all. I am not very fond of quarrels, and have no desire to do the least thing to annoy you, my excellent friend."
“A truce with this jesting. 'Tis ridiculous,” said Astaroth. “A bargain is a bargain, and I could not break it any more than your. self. Whether you win or lose, you will still not the less live the number of years agreed upon, and nothing will be able to diminish your happiness on this earth. But to checkmate me—that's a good joke!”
These words called forth a disdainful smile from Vincenzio, who began to look with contempt upon the imprudent Astaroth for al. lowing himself to be duped by him.
Meanwhile the game proceeded, following the same direction as the preceding. Our Venetian smiled as he remarked how impotent was the science of the most skilful human chess-player, in comparison with the art of a devil, and the cunning of the inhabitants of hell. “All my combinations," thought Vincenzio, “turn to his advantage; and were he to give me a castle, as he well could, I still should lose,—but all for nothing, poor devil!” The follow, ing was the position of the players; Astaroth had, as usual, the Whites, and it was his turn to play :
WHITE.—King at his second square; Rook at Queen's Bishop's square; Knight at Queen's Bishop's fifth; Pawn's at Queen's third-King's fifth-and King's Bishop's fourth.
Black.–King at Queen's fourth square; Rooks at Queen's Bishop's square, and King's Bishop's square; Bishop at King's Knight's third; Pawns at Queen's Bishop's third-Queen's fifth-King's third—and King's Bishop's second.
It is easy to see that Vincenzio had the advantage of a castle ; but, according to the common saying, the position, in Chess, is worth more than the number of pieces.
The game was at that point when Astaroth suddenly exclaimed: “ Very well! In four moves you are checkmate.” And the demon played the first of the four moves.
Vincenzio examined the position attentively, and saw that in fact, in the number of moves indicated, the checkmate was inevitable; but at the same time he could not refrain from admiring the eminent talent of his adversary, who, by a series of admirable moves, had thus forced and surrounded him on all sides. The heart of the Venetian beat high in his breast, and a slight paleness passed over his face. The impression that he experienced was delicious, and never had vengeance appeared so sweet to mortal. He remained with his eyes fixed calmly on the chessboard. “You see that I am not mistahen,” said Astaroth.
" Are you then in such a hurry, my good friend ?" replied Vincenzio.
“ Obey without reply. It is of no consequence how you play, but play at once; come, now!”
“My excellent friend," answered Vincenzio, “my good protector! man or demon, whatever you may be, moderate your impatience. I am but an humble and poor mortal—deign to listen to me. I believe we are playing according to the strict rules of the game. Now, according to those rules, I can take all the time necessary to make my combinations. Ah! I entreat you, do not be so uneasy on your chair ; you shall speak when I have done. The move is a difficult one, that is all. You claim to be able to checkmate me—so much the better, if you are able. I have lost the preceding games by playing too fast, a common fault of beginners, but I will not again fall into the same error. The position demands a serious attention. I will reflect, so long as I shall not have discovered the correct move to enable me to avoid my ruin. Till then, I shall not play. I intend to wait several hours before deciding. So you are at liberty to retire and return to morrow; then only shall I be able to tell you what I mean to play; or, if you prefer to finish the game by correspondence, I can inform you by mail of the move on which I shall have decided. In the meantime, I wish you every species of happiness. Pray excuse me; I sup with some friends, as I have mentioned, and am in despair that it is not in my power to invite you to accompany me.”
As he concluded these words, Vincenzio rose, and politely saluting his infernal guest, motioned him to the door.
Astaroth could not articulate a word. He was, as they say, caught in a trap. He found himself fairly floored by the impudence of this man. But at length his fury burst forth.
“What do you mean to say ?” he cried, entirely beyond himself. “ Are you an infamous scoundrel, or have you lost your senses ! Come, play at once, or else
“Ah! ah! ah ! ah !” said Vincenzio, laughing. “No threats, I bog. Have you not acknowledged that you possess no power
whatever over me? I confess that I am under great obligations to you, and if an opportunity should offer, I shall be too happy to render you any service in return. Meanwhile, till I can have that pleasure, Satan, (and Vincenzio raised himself erect to his full height),- liar and father of lies! know that all your wiles have been baffled and reduced to nothing by a simple mortal-by a man who mocks you to your face! Behold that clock ! in a few seconds the time that you are to pass upon the earth expires, and you to return to hell !"
Rage caused the blood to rush to the face of Astaroth, which completely blackened its purple hue. “Monster of ingratitude !” he howled forth. "I a
am a man!” coldly replied Vincenzio." Scarcely had he finished these words when midnight sounded. A terrible peal of thunder shook Venice to its foundations, and Astaroth disappeared from his eyes.
“ After all,” said Vincenzio to himself, “I have not treated him very handsomely." | Our Venetian never saw Astaroth again. He lived to a very advanced age, preserving the privileges of youth and the enjoyment of every pleasure, which he owed to his infernal compact. He devoted himself anew to Chess, and became more passionately fond of it than ever; the players of every country acknowledged him as their master. Nor did he forget his eternal salvation. When he felt his last hour approach, he received the consolations of religion, and after the priest had anointed his body with the holy oil, his soul took its flight to its creator.
Always take your full time to play, and never play too quick.
My heart, a spirit pure, went forth in love,
And found its own, unconscious, . fancy free,'
Its tenderness and immortality.
Love is not baffled in its tender quest,
And burns the holier in my silent breast.
Unconsciously beloved! how pure the prayer
My soul puts up to Heaven each night for thee;
And God will hear the wish of purity.
Can Love be hopeless? ah! they little know
Of woman's love, who think that Hope can die
Long as her faith in God keeps true and high.
And He shall watch it with a father's eye;
Her latent tender power where she may try,
It is her life to make-and who can tell,
But the full tides that in her bosom swell
Love ne'er despairs its loved in joy to see,
Ah, little know'st thou of that mystic urn,
A woman's heart, if thou canst ask if Love
Thrice blest indeed the heart allowed to prove,
A stream of joy around his path on earth
A cherished visitant art thou to me,
Oh may no thought of self thence ever bid thee flee!
PEACE AND WAR.
Among the philanthropic enterprises of our time, one of the most interesting is that which has for its object the abolition of War, and the adoption of the Peace principle by nations and individuals, in the settlement of all differences and disputes of a public and a private nature. The manner in which the cause of Peace has been advocated by the societies expressly formed for its promotion, has led to the discussion of topics of the highest importance to the intercourse of nations, and the existence of every government. The question has been raised whether war, defensive or offensive, be justifiable in any case; whether the taking of human life, and the resort to physical force by nations or individuals in self-defence, and for the redress of injuries, be not absolutely immoral and opposed to the principles of Christianity; and whether a Christian can consistently own allegiance to any government that claims the use of coercive measures for the execution of its laws.- It is with the view to a satisfactory settlement of these great questions as connected with the present agitation of the cause of Peace in our country, that we offer the following considerations.
The history of the Peace Societies in this country is remarkable not so much on account of their increase in numbers and means, as because, short as it is, it exhibits the growth of principle, which, whether true or erroneous, is ever the most important part of human history. An anonymous pamphlet, bearing the title of 'A Solemn Review of the Custom of War,' published in Boston in the year 1814, and republished in England, called into existence the different societies which afterward united under the name of the American Peace Society. That pamphlet was the work of a New England country clergyman,* whose fame had hardly reached beyond the sound of the bell of his village church, until the periodical of which he became the editor endeared the name of the “Friend of Peace," to all who found in this enterprise a sphere of action suited to their benevolent desires. “The Friend of Peace” was followed by the “Calumet,” and this by the “Advocate of Peace” which is at present the organ of the Peace Societies. Kindred societies have been formed in England, France, and Switzerland. Memorials for the institution of a Congress of nations with a view to a peaceable adjustment of all international disputes, have been brought before one of the State Legislatures, and before Congress, at its last, and again at its present, session. The committee appointed for the con
Noah Worcester. He died at Brighton, Massachusetts, 1837.