Famous Stories Every Child Should Know eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 279 pages of information about Famous Stories Every Child Should Know.
(which stammered with passion) from saying a word directly against her.  She soon drew her hand from under the water, bringing up a beautiful coral necklace whose glitter dazzled them all.  “Take it,” said she, offering it kindly to Bertalda; “I have sent for this, instead of the one you lost; do not grieve any more, my poor child.”  But Huldbrand darted forward, snatched the shining gift from Undine’s hand, hurled it again into the water, and roared furiously, “So you still have intercourse with them?  In the name of sorcery, go back to them with all your baubles, and leave us men in peace, witch as you are!” With eyes aghast, yet streaming with tears, poor Undine gazed at him, still holding out the hand which had so lovingly presented to Bertalda the bright jewel.  Then she wept more and more, like a sorely injured, innocent child.  And at length she said faintly, “Farewell, my dearest; farewell!  They shall not lay a finger on thee; only be true to me, that I may still guard thee from them.  But I, alas!  I must be gone; all this bright morning of life is over.  Woe, woe is me! what hast thou done? woe, woe!” And she slipped out of the boat and passed away.  Whether she went down into the river, or flowed away with it, none could tell; it was like both and yet like neither.  She soon mingled with the waters of the Danube, and nothing was to be heard but the sobbing whispers of the stream as it washed against the boat, seeming to say distinctly, “Woe, woe!  Oh be true to me! woe, woe!”

Huldbrand lay flat in the boat, drowned in tears, till a deep swoon came to the unhappy man’s relief, and steeped him in oblivion.

XVI.—­OF WHAT BEFELL HULDBRAND AFTERWARDS

Shall we say, Alas, or thank God, that our grief is so often transient?  I speak of such grief as has its source in the wellsprings of life itself, and seems so identified with our lost friend, as almost to fill up the void he has left; and his hallowed image seems fixed within the sanctuary of our soul, until the signal of our release comes, and sets us free to join him!  In truth, a good man will not suffer this sanctuary to be disturbed; yet even with him, it is not the first, the all-engrossing sorrow which abides.  New objects will intermingle, and we are compelled to draw from our grief itself a fresh proof of the perishableness of earthly things:  alas, then, that our grief is transient!

So it was with the Lord of Ringstetten; whether for his weal or woe, the sequel of this story will show us.  At first, he could do nothing but weep abundantly, as his poor kind Undine had wept when he snatched from her the beautiful gift, which she thought would have comforted and pleased them so much.  He would then stretch out his hand as she had done, and burst into tears afresh, like her.  He secretly hoped that he might end by altogether dissolving in tears:  and are there not many whose minds have been visited

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Famous Stories Every Child Should Know from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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