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pass in, and draw a stool to a little table. The
lamp (just such another as they dig out of
Pompeii) is lighted, but the place is empty. The
figure in the cloak has followed me in, and
stands before me.

"The master?"

"At your service, sir."

"Please to give me a glass of the wine of the

He turns to a little counter, to get it. As
his striking face is pale, and his action is
evidently that of an enfeebled man, I remark that
I fear he has been ill. It is not much, he
courteously and gravely answers, though bad while
it lasts: the fever.

As he sets the wine on the little table, to his
manifest surprise I lay my hand on the back of
his, look him. in the face, and say in a low
voice: "I am an Englishman, and you are
acquainted with a friend of mine. Do you
recollect——?" and I mention the name of my
generous countryman.

Instantly, he utters a loud cry, bursts into
tears, and falls on his knees at my feet, clasping
my legs in both his arms and bowing his head to
the ground.

Some years ago, this man at my feet, whose
overfraught heart is heaving as if it would
burst from his breast, and whose tears are wet
upon the dress I wear, was a galley-slave in the
North of Italy. He was a political offender,
having been concerned in the then last rising,
and was sentenced to imprisonment for life.
That he would have died in his chains, is certain,
but for the circumstance that the Englishman
happened to visit his prison.

It was one of the vile old prisons of Italy, and
a part of it was below the waters of the harbour.
The place of his confinement was an arched
underground and under-water gallery, with a
grill-gate at the entrance, through which it
received such light and air as it got. Its condition
was insufferably foul, and a stranger could hardly
breathe in it, or see in it with the aid of a torch.
At the upper end of this dungeon, and
consequently in the worst position, as being the
furthest removed from light and air, the
Englishman first beheld him, sitting on an iron
bedstead to which he was chained by a heavy chain.
His countenance impressed the Englishman as
having nothing in common with the faces of
the malefactors with whom he was associated,
and he talked with him, and learnt how he came
to be there.

When the Englishman emerged from the
dreadful den into the light of day, he asked his
conductor, the governor of the gaol, why
Giovanni Carlavcro was put into the worst place?

"Because he is particularly recommended,"
was the stringent answer.

"Recommended, that is to say, for death?"

"Excuse me; particularly recommended," was
again the answer.

"He has a bad tumour in his neck, no doubt
occasioned by the hardship of his miserable life.
If it continues to be neglected, and he remains
where he is, it will kill him."

"Excuse me, I can do nothing. He is
particularly recommended."

The Englishman was staying in that town, and
he went to his home there; but the figure of this
man chained to the bedstead made it no home,
and destroyed his rest and peace. He was an
Englishman of an extraordinarily tender heart, and he
could not bear the picture. He went back to the
prison grate: went back again and again, and talked
to the man and cheered him. He used his
utmost influence to get the man unchained from
the bedstead, were it only for ever so short a time
in the day, and permitted to come to the grate.
It took along time, but the Englishman's station,
personal character, and steadiness of purpose,
wore out opposition so far, and that grace was
at last accorded. Through the bars, when he
could thus get light upon the tumour, the
Englishman lanced it, and it did well, and healed.
His strong interest in the prisoner had greatly
increased by this time, and he formed the
desperate resolution that he would exert his
utmost self-devotion and use his utmost efforts,
to get Carlavero pardoned.

If the prisoner had been a brigand and a mur-
derer, if he had committed every non-political
crime in the Newgate Calendar and out of it,
nothing would have been easier than for a man
of any court or priestly influence to obtain his
release. As it was, nothing could have been
more difficult. Italian authorities, and English
authorities who had interest with them, alike
assured the Englishman that his object was
hopeless. He met with nothing but eva-
sion, refusal, and ridicule. His political pri-
soner became a joke in the place. It was es-
pecially observable that English Circumlocu-
tion, and English Society on its travels, were as
humorous on the subject as Circumlocution
and Society may be on any subject without loss
of caste. But, the Englishman possessed (and
proved it well in his life) a courage very un-
common among us: he had not the least fear
of being considered a bore, in a good humane
cause. So he went on persistently trying, and
trying, and trying, to get Giovanni Carlavero
out. That prisoner had been rigorously re-
chained, after the tumour operation, and it was
not likely that his miserable life could last very

One day, when all the town knew about the
Englishman and his political prisoner, there
came to the Englishman, a certain sprightly
Italian Advocate of whom he had some know-
ledge; and he made this strange proposal.
"Give me a hundred pounds to obtain Carla-
vero's release. I think I can get him a pardon,
with that money. But I cannot tell you what
I am going to do with the money, nor must you
ever ask me the question if I succeed, nor must
you ever ask me for an account of the money
if I fail." The Englishman decided to hazard
the hundred pounds. He did so, and heard not
another word of the matter. For half a year
and more, the Advocate made no sign, and never
once " took on" in any way, to have the subject
on his mind. The Englishman was then obliged