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In sacred vests, a venerable train,
They stand. The delegated Maid obeys
Their summons. As she came, a loveliest blush
O'er her fair cheek suffus'd, such as became
One mindful still of maiden modesty,
Tho' of her own worth conscious. Thro' the aisle
The cold wind moaning as it pass’d along
Waved her dark flowing locks. Before the train
In reverent silence waiting their sage will,
With half-averted eye she stood composed.
So have I seen the simple snow-drop rise
Amid the russet leaves that hide the earth
In early spring, so seen it gently bend
In modest loveliness alone amid
The waste of winter.

By the Maiden's side.
The Son of Orleans stood, prepared to vouch
That when on Charles the Maiden's eye had fix'd,
As led by power miraculous, no fraud,
Nor juggling artifice of secret sign

Dissembled inspiration. As he stood
Steadily viewing the mysterious rites,
Thus to the attentive Maid the Arch-Priest spake
Severe.

“ Woman, if any fiend of hell “ Lurk in thy bosom, so to prompt the vaunt “ Of inspiration, and to mock the power “ Of God and holy Church, thus by the virtue “ Of water hallowed in the name of God “ That damned spirit adjure I to depart From his possessed prey.” ,

Slowly he spake, And sprinkled water on the virgin's face: Indignant at the unworthy charge, the Maid Felt her cheek flush, but soon the transient glow Fading, she answer'd meek.

“ Most holy Sires, “ Ye reverend Fathers of the Christian church, “ Most catholic! I stand before you here A poor weak woman; of the grace vouchsafed,

“ How far unworthy, conscious: yet tho' mean,
" Innocent of fraud, and chosen by high Heaven
“ The, minister of aid. Strange voices heard,
“ The dark and shadowing visions of the night,
“ And feelings which I may not dare to doubt,
“ These portents make me conscious of the God
“ Within me; he who gifted my purged eye
“ To know the Monarch ’mid the menial throng,
“ Unseen before. Thus much it boots to say.
“ The life of simple virgin ill deserves
“ To call your minds from studies wise and deep,
“ Not to be fathom'd by the weaker sense
“ Of man profane.”

“ Thou speakest," said the Priest, “ Of dark and shadowing visions of the night. “ Canst thou remember, Maid, what vision first “Seem'd more than Fancy's shaping? From such tale, “ Minutely told with accurate circumstance, “ Best judgement might be formed.”

The Maid replied,

“ Amid the mountain vallies I had driven “ My father's flock. The eve was drawing on, “ When by a sudden storm surprized, I sought “ A chapel's neighbouring shelter; ruin'd now, “ But I remember when its vesper bell “ Was heard among the hills, a pleasant sound, “ That made me pause upon my homeward road, “ Awakening in me comfortable thoughts “ Of holiness. The unsparing soldiery “ Had sack'd the hamlet near, and none was left “ Duly at sacred seasons to attend “ Saint Agnes' chapel. In the desolate pile “ I drove my flock, with no irreverent thoughts, “ Nor mindless that the place on which I trod “ Was holy ground. It was a fearful night! “ Devoutly to the virgin Saint I pray'd, . “ Then heap'd the wither'd leaves which autumn winds “ Had drifted in, and laid me down upon them, And sure I think I slept. But so it was “ That, in the dead of night, Saint Agnes stood .

“ Before mine eyes, such and so beautiful “ As when, amid the house of wickedness, “ The Power whom with such fervent love she served “ Veild her with glory. And she seem'd to point “ To the moss-grown altar, and the crucifix “ Half hid by weeds and grass; .. and then I thought “ I could have wither'd armies with a look, “ For from the present Saint such divine power “ I felt infused.... 'Twas but a dream perhaps. “ And yet methought that when a louder peal “ Burst o'er the roof, and all was left again “ Utterly dark, the bodily sense was clear “ And accurate in every circumstance “ Of time and place.”

Attentive to her words Thus the Priest answer'd.

“ Brethren, ye have heard “ The woman's tale. Beseems us now to ask “ Whether of holy Church a duteous child “ Before our court appears, so not unlike

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