Father Le Vieux paused, his fine face beaming with enthusiasm, while the Knight bent again his head, and, kissing the priest’s hand, murmured “Peccavi.”
“Thy faithfulness I commend,” resumed the father, “but as thy spiritual guide, I warn thee against human weakness. It is a mighty discourager of great undertakings. Only by faith and remembrance of what thou art vowed to, can it be overcome. Nor doubt, though thou dost not clearly understand, and but little progress seems to be made. Remember that though we must soon depart, the Society of Jesus remains. Our Order may be as the drops of water perpetually falling on a rock, which are dashed into fragments by the fall; yet is the fate of the repelling body inevitable, and, after centuries, it is doomed to be washed away.”
“Reverend Father,” said the Knight, “I will bury thy words, in my mind, and often meditate upon them.”
“Do so, my son, and by the aid of Holy Mary, and the Saints, and blessed Evangelists, doubt not they will profit. But I charge thee to beware of laic reason and human impulses. Refer all things to the standard whereby thou hast been taught, for so only will it be well. Farewell; morning approaches, and I depart, for I would not have the presence of a white man suspected by thy companion. I will communicate further with thee as opportunity presents, and, meanwhile, I will consider how thy mission may be made to redound most to the honor of the Church. If, by restraining the ferocity of the Taranteens, the end may be accomplished, gladly will I exert my influence therefor; but, on the contrary, if I see that a union among the tribes can be effected, whereby these intrusive Philistines can be driven from the land, I will put myself at the head of our savage friends, and Winthrop and his unhappy followers shall be doomed.”
He ceased, and bowed, and the Knight reverently bending his body, took leave.
Make thy stubborn knowledge bow,
Weep out thy reason’s and thy body’s eyes,
Deject thyself, that thou mayest rise,
To look to heaven—be blind to all below.
On rising, which he did with the sun, leaving the Knight buried in sleep, Arundel took his way through the village to enjoy the fresh morning air and examine the Indian wigwams, it being the first considerable collection of them which he had seen. He found them, to the number of forty or fifty, extending at a distance of four or five rods from one another, in a couple of wide avenues, from the edge of a wood to the margin of a river. The piece of ground on which the lodges were built seemed to be a bit of alluvial formed by the overflowing of the river. All along the stream were scattered fields of maize, whose tall, stout stalks attested the richness of the soil. The cultivation was of that sluggish