The Wandering Jew — Volume 08 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 101 pages of information about The Wandering Jew Volume 08.

She had not hesitated.  There was therefore no hope, not the slightest; even if an ocean had not separated him from Margaret, he knew enough of her blind submission to her mother, to be certain that all relations between them were broken off forever.  It is well.  He will no longer reckon upon this heart—­his last refuge.  The two roots of his life have been torn up and broken, with the same blow, the same day, almost at the same moment.  What then remains for thee, poor sensitive plant, as thy tender mother used to call thee?  What remains to console thee for the loss of this last love—­this last friendship, so infamously crushed?  Oh! there remains for thee that one corner of the earth, created after the image of thy mind that little colony, so peaceful and flourishing, where, thanks to thee, labor brings with it joy and recompense.  These worthy artisans, whom thou hast made happy, good, and grateful, will not fail thee.  That also is a great and holy affection; let it be thy shelter in the midst of this frightful wreck of all thy most sacred convictions!  The calm of that cheerful and pleasant retreat, the sight of the unequalled happiness of thy dependents, will soothe thy poor, suffering soul, which now seems to live only for suffering.  Come! you will soon reach the top of the hill, from which you can see afar, in the plain below, that paradise of workmen, of which you are the presiding divinity.

M. Hardy had reached the summit of the hill.  At that moment the conflagration, repressed for a short time, burst forth with redoubled fury from the Common Dwelling-house, which it had now reached.  A bright streak, at first white, then red, then copper-colored, illuminated the distant horizon.  M. Hardy looked at it with a sort of incredulous, almost idiotic stupor.  Suddenly, an immense column of flame shot up in the thick of a cloud of smoke, accompanied by a shower of sparks, and streamed towards the sky, casting a bright reflection over all the country, even to M. Hardy’s feet.  The violence of the north wind, driving the flames in waves before it, soon brought to the ears of M. Hardy the hurried clanging of the alarm-bell of the burning factory.

[35] We wish it to be understood, that the necessities of our story alone have made the Wolves the assailants.  While endeavoring to paint the evils arising the abuse of the spirit of association, we do not wish to ascribe a character of savage hostility to one sect rather than to the other to the Wolves more than to the Devourers.  The Wolves, a club of united stone-cutters, are generally industrious, intelligent workmen, whose situation is the more worthy of interest, as not only their labors, conducted with mathematical precision, are of the rudest and most wearisome kind, but they are likewise out of work during three or four months of the year, their profession being, unfortunately, one of those which winter condemns to a forced cessation.  A number of Wolves, in order to perfect themselves in their trade, attend every evening a course of linear geometry, applied to the cutting of stone, analogous to that given by M. Agricole Perdignier, for the benefit of carpenters.  Several working stone-cutters sent an architectural model in plaster to the last exhibition.

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The Wandering Jew — Volume 08 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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