Roumania Past and Present eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 315 pages of information about Roumania Past and Present.
knowledge and great taste in art, and one of her chief desires is to promote national industry.  She sets the example by wearing the national costume (in which her portrait is usually taken) whilst in the country, and requires it to be worn on State occasions, her main object being, we were told, to encourage the peasant women who make these costumes in their own homes.  But whilst in these matters, as in her devotion to public duty, the Queen identifies herself with the Roumanian people and their interests, she would not be a German if she had forgotten the ‘Fatherland.’

    ’Land of greenwood and of vine,
    Sparkling wavelets of the Rhine,
    Hushed thy song, afar thy gleam. 
    All to me, now, but a dream.

    ’Oft when I these eyelids close,
    Purling sounds haunt my repose,
    Vessels in the sunlight’s ray,
    ’Fore the wind, speed on their way.

    ’Lovely home on German plain
    Once my own, but ne’er again,
    Thou wilt be to mem’ry dear
    Till they place me on my bier.’[194]

[Footnote 194:  The first three verses of the dedication in Rumaenische Dichtungen, by Carmen Sylva (the Queen’s nom de plume), Leipzig, W. Friedrich, 1881.  Lest our halting verse should prejudice the illustrious authoress, we append the original for those who know German:—­

    ’Du Rebenland, du gruener Wald,
    Du Rhein mit deinem Schimmer: 
    Dein Glanz ist fern, dein Sang verhallt,
    Ich bin entflohn fuer immer!

    ‘Oft, oft schliess’ ich die Angen zu,
    Dann hoer’ ich’s singen, rauschen,
    Seh’ Schiffe zieh’n in sonn’ger Ruh’,
    Den Wind die Segel bauschen.

    ‘Dass ich die schoenste Heimath hab’
    In deutschen Gau’n besessen,
    Das macht, dass ich sie bis zum Grab
    Nun nimmer kann vergessen.’
]

III.

But her Majesty, who is a Protestant, is not the only lady now living who has made her mark in Roumanian history.  There is another of whom we are sure our readers will be glad to hear something, for she is an accomplished Englishwoman, and it is very questionable whether, after all, the Roumanians do not owe their independence as much to her energy and devotion as to any other cause; we mean Madame Rosetti, the wife of the Home Secretary.[195] It was mentioned in our historical summary that the patriots of 1848 made their escape to France in that year, and that they returned after the Crimean war in 1856.  That is a long story told in a, couple of sentences, and but for Madame Rosetti it is probable they would never have escaped, but would have languished and died in a Turkish prison in Bosnia, whilst Roumania might have been at this day a Turkish pashalik or a Russian province.  The fact is that all the leaders of the revolution, fifteen in number, were arrested and conveyed on board a Turkish man-of-war lying in the

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Roumania Past and Present from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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