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to shrink from facing death in her own per- | he issued his warrant for the execution. Acson. Many incidents in her career show the cordingly, as the sun went down, the sad procoolness and even gaiety with which, in any cession formed within the prison. Into the great case where death was apparently inevitable, she square of Tucuman it moved, where the scaffold would have gone to meet it. But in this case had been built, and the whole city had assembled she had a temptation for escaping it, which was for the spectacle. Catalina steadily ascended the probably in her power. She had only to reveal ladder of the scaffold; even then she resolved the secret of her sex, and the ridiculous witnesses, not to benefit by revealing her sex ; even then it beyond whose testimony there was nothing at all was that she expressed her scorn for the lubberly against her, must at once be covered with derision. executioner's mode of tying a knot ; did it herCatalina had some liking for fun; and a main self in a “ship-shape,” orthodox manner ; reinducement to this course was, that it would ceived in return the enthusiastic plaudits of the enable her to say to the judges, “ Now you see crowd, and so far ran the risk of precipitating what old fools you've made of yourselves; every her fate ; for the timid magistrates, fearing a woman and child in Peru will soon be laughing rescue from the impetuous mob, angrily ordered at you." I must acknowledge my own weakness; the executioner to finish the scene. The clatter this last temptation I could not have withstood; of a galloping horse, however, at this instant flesh is weak, and fun is strong. But Catalina did. forced them to pause. The crowd opened a road On consideration she fancied, that, although the for the agitated horseman, who was the bearer particular motive for murdering Acosta would be of an order from the President of La Plata to dismissed with laughter, still this might not clear suspend the execution until two prisoners could her of the murder, which on some other motive be examined. The whole was the work of the she might have committed. But supposing that Senora and her daughter. The elder lady, having she were cleared altogether, what most of all she gathered informations against the witnesses, had feared was, that the publication of her sex would pursued them to La Plata. There, by her influthrow a reflex light upon many past transactions ence with the Governor, they were arrested ; rein her life-would instantly find its way to Spain- cognised as old malefactors; and in their terror and would probably soon bring her within the had partly confessed their perjury. Catalina was tender attentions of the Inquisition. She kept removed to La Plata ; solemnly acquitted ; and, firm to the resolution of not saving her life by by the advice of the President, for the present the this discovery. And so far as her fate lay in her connexion with the Senora's family was postown hands, she would (as the reader will perceive poned indefinitely. from a little incident at the scaffold) have perished Now was the last adventure approaching that to a certainty. But even at this point, how ever Catalina should see in the new world. Some strange a case! A woman falsely accused of an fine sights she may yet see in Europe, but nothing act which she really did commit! And falscly after this (which she has recorded) in America. accused of a true offence upon a motive that was Europe, if it had ever heard of her name (which impossible!
very shortly it shall), Kings, Pope, Cardinals, if As the sun set upon the seventh day, when the they were but aware of her existence (which in six hours were numbered for the prisoner, there filed months they shall be), would thirst for an introducinto her cell four persons in religious habits. tion to our Catalina. You hardly thought now, They came on the charitable mission of preparing reader, that she was such a great person, or any. the poor convict for death. Catalina, however, body's pet but yours and mine. Bless you, sir
, she watching all things narrowly, remarked some would scorn to look at us. I tell you, royalties are thing earnest and significant in the eye of the languishing to see her, or soon will be. But how can leader, as of one who had some secret communi- this come to pass, if she is to continue in her precation to make. She contrived to clasp this man's sent obscurity ? Certainly it cannot without some hands as if in the energy of internal struggles, great peripetteia or vertiginous whirl of fortune ; and he contrived to slip into hers the very smallest which, therefore, you shall now behold taking of billets from poor Juana. It contained, for place in one turn of her next adventure. That indeed it could contain: only these three words— shall let in a light, that shall throw back a Claude 6. Do not confess. J." This one caution, so Lorraine gleam over all the past, able to make simple and so brief, was a talisman. It did not Kings, that would have cared not for her under refer to any confession of the crime, that would Peruvian daylight, come to glorify her setting. have been assuming what Juana was neither beams. entitled nor disposed to assume, but, in the tech- The Senora-and, observe, whatever kindness nical sense of the Church, to the act of devotional she does to Catalina speaks secretly from two confession. Catalina found a single moment for hearts, her own and Juana's-had, by the advice a glance at it—understood the whole-resolutely of Mr. President Mendonia, given sufficient money refused to confess, as a person unsettled in her for Catalina's travelling expenses. So far well. religious opinions, that needed spiritual instruc- But Mr. M. chose to add a little codicil to this tions, and the four monks withdrew to make their bequest of the Senora's, never suggested by her report. The principal judge, upon hearing of the or by her daughter. “Pray," said this Inquisiprisoner's impenitence, granted another day. At tive President, who surely might have found the end of that, no change having occurred either business enough in La Plata,“
Pray, Senor in the prisoner's mind, or in the circumstances, 'Pietro Diaz, did you ever live at Concepcion ?
And were you ever acquainted there with Senor to cover up all between the ears and the mouth, Miguel de Erauso? That man, sir, was my friend." she replied, “ that she had bought and paid for What a pity that on this occasion Catalina could the horse at La Plata. But now, your worship, not venture to be candid ! What a capital speech if this horse has really been stolen from these it would have made to say—“ Friend were you ? men, they must know well of which eye it is I think you could hardly be that, with 700 iniles blind ; for it can be only in the right eye or the But that man
was my friend left." One of the soldiers cried out instantly, also ; and, secondly, my brother. True it is I that it was the left eye ; but the other said, “No, killed him. But if you happen to know that this no, you forget, it's the right.” Kate maliciously was by pure mistake in the dark, what an old called attention to this little schism. But the men rogue you must be to throw that in my teeth, said, “ Ah, that was nothing; they were hurried ; which is the affliction of my life!” Again, how- but now, on recollecting themselves, they were ever, as so often in the same circumstances, Cata- agreed that it was the left eye.” Did they stand to lina thought that it would cause more ruin than that? Oh yes, positive they were, left it could heal to be candid : and, indeed, if she Upon which our Kate, twitching off the horsewere really P. Diaz, Esq., how came she to be cloth, said gaily to the magistrate—“Now, sir, brother to the late Mr. Erauso ? On considera- please to observe that this horse has nothing the tion, also, if she could not tell all, merely to have matter with either eye." And in fact it was so. professed a fraternal connexion which never was Then his worship ordered his alguazils to appreavowed by either whilst living together, would not hend the two witnesses, who posted off to bread have brightened the reputation of Catalina, which and water, with other reversionary advantages, too surely required a scouring. Still, from my whilst Kate rode in quest of the best dinner that kindness for poor Kate, I feel uncharitably Paz could furnish. towards the president for advising Senor Pietro This Alcalde's acquaintance, however, was not “ to travel for his health.” What had he to do destined to drop here. Something had appeared with people's health ? However, Mr. Peter, as he in the young caballero's bearing, which made it had pocketed the Senora’s money, thought it right painful to have addressed him with harshness, or to pocket also the advice that accompanied its for a moment to have entertained such a charge payment. That he might be in a condition to do against such a person. He despatched his cousin, so, he went off to buy a horse. He was in luck therefore, Don Antonio Calderon, to offer his to-day. For, beside money and advice, he ob- apologies, and at the same time to request that tained, at a low rate, a horse both beautiful and the stranger, whose rank and quality he regretted serviceable for a journey. To Paz it was, a city not to have known, would do him the honour to of prosperous name, that the cornet first moved. come and dine with him. This explanation, and But Paz did not fulfil the promise of its name. the fact that Don Antonio had already proclaimed For it laid the grounds of a feud that drove our his own position as cousin to the magistrate and Kate out of America.
nephew to the Bishop of Cuzco, obliged Catalina Her first adventure was a bagatelle, and fitter to say, after thanking the gentlemen for their for a jest book than a history; yet it proved no obliging attentions, “I myself hold the rank of jest either, since it led to the tragedy that fol- | Alférez in the service of his Catholic Majesty. lowed. Riding into Paz, our gallant standard- I am a native of Biscay, and I am now repairing to bearer and her bonny black horse drew all eyes, Cuzco on private business.” To Cuzco !” excomme de raison, upon their separate charms. claimed Don Antonio, “how very fortunate ! my This was inevitable amongst the indolent popula- cousin is a Basque like you ; and, like you, he tion of a Spanish town; and Kate was used to starts for Cuzco to-morrow morning ; so that, if it. But, having recently had a little too much of it is agreeable to you, Senor Alférez, we will the public attention, she felt nervous on remarking travel together.” It was settled that they should. two soldiers eyeing the handsome horse and the To travel-amongst balcony” witnesses, and handsome rider, with an attention that seemed too anglers for “blind horses ”—not merely with a solemn for mere æsthetics. However, Kate was not just man, but with the very abstract idea and the kind of person to let anything dwell on her riding allegory of justice, was too delightful to spirits, especially if it took the shape of impudence; the storm-wearied cornet ; and he cheerfully acand, whistling gaily, she was riding forward— companied Don Antonio to the house of the when, who should cross her path, but the Alcalde ! magistrate, called Don Pedro de Chavarria. DisAh! Alcalde, you see a person now that has a tinguished was his reception ; the Alcalde permission against you, though quite unknown to sonally renewed his regrets for the ridiculous herself. He looked so sternly, that Kate asked scene of the two scampish oculists, and presented if his worship had any commands. “ These him to his wife, a splendid Andalusian beauty, to men,” said the Alcalde, " these two soldiers, say whom he had been married about a year. that this horse is stolen." To one who had so nar- This lady there is a reason for describing; and rowly and so lately escaped the balcony witness the French reporter of Catalina's memoirs dwells and his friend, it was really no laughing matter to upon the theme. She united, he says, the sweethear of new affidavits in preparation. Kate was ness of the German lady with the energy of the nervous ; but never disconcerted. In a moment Arabian, a combination hard to judge of. As she had twitched off a saddle cloth on which she to her feet, he adds, I say nothing; for she sat ; and throwing it over the horse's head, so as I had scarcely any at all, "Je ne parle point de
ses pieds, elle n'en avait presque pas.” “Poor | cavaliers, Calderon and our Kate, had sleeping lady!" says a compassionate rustic : “no feet! rooms at the public locanda; but for the lady was What a shocking thing that so fine a woman reserved a little pleasure-house in an enclosed should have been so sadly mutilated!" Oh, my dear garden. This was a plaything of a house ; rustic, you're quite in the wrong box. The French- but the season being summer, and the house man means this as the very highest compliment. surrounded with tropical flowers, the lady preBeautiful, however, she must have been ; and a ferred it (in spite of its loneliness) to the damp Cinderella I hope, not a Cinderellula, considering mansion of the official grandee, who, in her humthat she had the inimitable walk and step of the ble opinion, was quite as fusty as his mansion, Andalusians, which cannot be accomplished with and his mansion not much less so than himself. out something of a proportionate basis to stand After dining gaily together at the locanda, upon.
and possibly taking a “rise' out of his worship, The reason which there is (as I have said) for the Corregidor, as a repeating echoof Don Quixote, describing this lady arises out of her relation to (then growing popular in Spanish America) the the tragic events which followed. She, by her young man who was no young officer, and the criminal levity, was the cause of all. And I must young officer who was no young man, lounged here warn the moralising blunderer of two er- down together to the little pavilion in the flowerrors that he is too likely to make : 1st, That he garden, with the purpose of paying their respects is invited to read some extract from a licentious to the presiding belle. They were graciously amour, as if for its own interest ; 2d, Or on received ; and had the honour of meeting there account of Donna Catalina's memoirs, with a his Mustiness the Alcalde, and his Fustiness the view to relieve their too martial character. I Corregidor ; whose conversation was surely imhave the pleasure to assure him of his being so ut- proving, but not equally brilliant. How they terly in the darkness of error, that any possible got on under the weight of two such muff's, has change he can make in his opinions, right or left, been a mystery for two centuries. But they did must be for the better: he cannot stir, but he will to a certainty, for the party did not break up mend; which is a delightful thought for the moral till eleven. Tea and turn out you could not call and blundering mind. As to the first point, what it ; for there was the turn out
rigour but not little glimpse he obtains of a licentious amour is, the tea. One thing, however, Catalina by mere as a court of justice will sometimes show him such accident had an opportunity of observing, and oba glimpse, simply to make intelligible the subse- served with pain. The two official gentlemen had quent facts which depend upon it. Secondly, As to gone down the steps into the garden. Catalina, the conceit, that Catalina wished to embellish her having forgot her hat, went back into the little memoirs, understand that no such practice then vestibule to look for it. There stood the lady existed ; certainly not in Spanish literature. Her and Don Antonio, exchanging a few final words memoirs are electrifying by their facts ; else, in (they were final) and a few final signs. Amongst the manner of telling these facts, they are syste- the last Kate observed distinctly this ; and dismatically dry.
tinctly she understood it. First drawing CalDon Antonio Calderon was a handsome, deron's attention to the gesture, as one of signiaccomplished cavalier. And in the course of ficant pantomime, by raising her forefinger, the dinner, Catalina was led to judge from the beha- lady snuffed out one of the candles. The young viour to each other of this gentleman and the man answered it by a look of intelligence, and lady, the Alcalde's beautiful wife, that they all three passed down the steps together. The had an improper understanding. This also she lady was disposed to take the cool air, and accominferred from the furtive language of their eyes. panied them to the garden-gate; but in passing Her wonder was, that the Alcalde should be so down the walk Catalina noticed a second illblind ; though upon that point she saw reason omened sign that all was not right. Two glaring in a day or two to change her opinion. Some eyes she distinguished amongst the shrubs for a people see everything by affecting to see nothing. moment, and a rustling immediately after. The whole affair, however, was nothing at all to “ What's that?” said the lady, and Don Antonio her, and she would have dismissed it from her answered carelessly—“a bird flying out of the thoughts altogether, but for what happened on bushes.” the journey.
Catalina, as usual, had read everything. Not From the miserable roads, eight hours a-day a wrinkle or a rustle was lost upon her. And, of travelling was found quite enough for man and therefore, when she reached the locanda, knowbeast ; the product of which eight hours was ing to an iota all that was coming, she did not from ten to twelve leagues. On the last day but retire to bed, but paced before the house. She one of the journey, the travelling party, which had not long to wait: in fifteen minutes, the door was precisely the original dinner party, reached opened softly, and out stepped Calderon, Kate a little town ten leagues short of Cuzco. The Cor-walked forward, and faced him immediately; regidor of this place was a friend of the Alcalde ; telling him laughingly that it was not good for and through his influence the party obtained better his health to go abroad on this night. The young accomodations than those which they had usually man showed some impatience ; upon which, very had in a hovel calling itself a venta, or in the seriously, Kate acquainted him with her suspicions, sheltered corner of a barn. The Alcalde was to and with the certainty that the Alcalde was not sleep at the Corregidor's house : the two young so blind as he had seemed. Calderon thanked her
for the information; would be upon his guard; but, robe, so that but for the horseman's cloak of Kate to prevent further expostulation, he wheeled round she would have perished. But there was no time instantly into the darkness. Catalina was too to lose. They had already lost two hours from well convinced, however, of the mischief on foot, the consequences of their cold bath. Cuzco to leave him thus. She followed rapidly, and was still eighteen miles distant; and the Alpassed silently into the garden, almost at the calde's shrewdness would at once divine this to same time with Calderon. Both took their sta- be his wife's mark. They remounted : very tions behind trees; Calderon watching nothing soon the silent night echoed the hoofs of a but the burning candles, Catalina watching pursuing rider ; and now commenced the most circumstances to direct her movements. The frantic race, in which each party rode as if the candles burned brightly in the little pavilion. whole game of life were staked upon the issue. Presently one was extinguished. Upon this, The pace was killing: and Kate has delivered it Calderon pressed forward to the steps, hastily as her opinion, in the memoirs which she wrote, asconded them, and passed into the vestibule. that the Alcalde was the better mounted. This Catalina followed on his traces. What succeeded may be doubted. And certainly Kate had ridden was all one scene of continued, dreadful dumb too many years in the Spanish cavalry to have show: different passions of panic, or deadly any fear of his worship’s horsemanship; but it struggle, or hellish malice absolutely suffocated was a prodigious disadvantage that her horse all articulate words.
had to carry double; while the horse ridden by In a moment a gurgling sound was heard as her opponent was one of those belonging to the of a wild beast attempting vainly to yell over some murdered Don Antonio, and known to Kate as a creature that it was strangling. Next came a powerful animal. At length they had come tumbling out at the door of one black mass, within three miles of Cuzco. The road after this which heaved and parted at intervals into two descended the whole way to the city, and in some figures, which closed, which parted again, which places rapidly, so as to require a cool rider. at last fell down the steps together. Then ap- Suddenly a deep trench appeared traversing the peared a figure in white. It was the unhappy whole extent of a broad heath. It was useless to Andalusian; and she seeing the outline of Cata- evade it. To have hesitated was to be lost. Kate lina's
person, ran up to her, unable to utter one saw the necessity of clearing it, but doubted much syllable. Pitying the agony of her horror, Catalina whether her poor exhausted horse, after twentytook her within her own cloak, and carried her out one miles of work so severe, had strength for the at the garden gate.
Calderon had by this time effort. Kate's maxim, however, which never yet died ; and the maniacal Alcalde had risen up had failed, both figuratively for life, and literally to
pursue his wife. But Kate, foreseeing what he for the saddle, was—to ride at everything that would do, had stepped silently within the shadow showed a front of resistance. She did so now. of the garden wall. Looking down the road to Having come upon the trench rather too suddenly, the town, and seeing nobody moving, the maniac, she wheeled round for the advantage of coming for some purpose, went back to the house. This down upon it more determinately, rode resolutely moment Kate used to recover the locanda with at it, and gained the opposite bank. The hind the lady still panting in horror. What was to feet of her horse were sinking back from the rotbe done? To think of concealment in this little tenness of the ground; but the strong supporting place was out of the question. The Alealde bridle-hand of Kate carried him forward; and in was a man of local power, and it was certain that ten minutes more they would be in Cuzco. This he would kill his wife on the spot. Kate's being seen by the vicious Alcalde, who had built generosity would not allow her to have any col- great hopes on the trench, he unslung his carbine, lusion with this murderous purpose. At Cuzco, pulled up, and fired after the bonny black horse and the principal convent was ruled by a near rela- its bonny fair riders. But this manoeuvre would tive of the Andalusian ; and there she would find have lost his worship any bet that he might have
Kate, therefore, saddled her horse had depending on this admirable steeple chase. rapidly, placed the lady behind, and rode off in Had I been stakeholder, what a pleasure it would the darkness. About five miles out of the town have been, in fifteen minutes from this very vicious their road was crossed by a torrent, over which shot, to pay into Kate's hands every shilling of the they could not hit the bridge. “Forward!” cried deposits. I would have listened to no nonsense the lady; and Kate repeating the word to the about referees or protests. The bullets, says horse, the docile creature leaped down into the Kate, whistled round the poor clinging lady en water. They were all sinking at first; but croupe-luckily none struck her; but one wounded having its head free, the horse swam clear of all the horse. And that settled the odds. Kate obstacles through the midnight darkness, and now planted herself well in her stirrups to enter scrambled out on the opposite bank. The two Cuzco, almost dangerously a winner; for the horse riders were dripping from the shoulders down- was so maddened by the wound, and the road so ward. But, seeing a light twinkling from a cot- steep, that he went like blazes; and it really betage window, Kate rode up; obtained a little came difficult for Kate to guide him with any prerefreshment, and the benefit of a fire, from a cision through narrow episcopal paths. Hencepoor labouring man. From this man she also forwards the wounded horse required Kate's conbought a warm mantle for the lady, who, besides tinued attention; and yet, in the mere luxury her torrent bath, was dressed in a light evening of strife, it was impossible for Kate to avoid
turning a little in her saddle to see the Al- | the Alcalde, who died upon the spot. In an calde's performance on this tight rope of the instant the servant of Calderon had fled. In an trench. His worship’s horsemanship being per- instant the Alguazils had come up. They and haps rather rusty, and he not perfectly acquainted the servants of the Alcalde pressed furiously on with his horse, it would have been agreeable to Kate, who now again was fighting for life. compromise the case by riding round, or dis Against such odds, she was rapidly losing ground: mounting. But all that was imp ible. The when, in an instant, on the opposite side of the job must be done. And I am happy to report, street, the great gates of the Episcopal palace for the reader's satisfaction, the sequel--so far rolled open. Thither it was that Calderon's seras Kate could attend the performance. Gather- vant had fled. The bishop and his attendants ing himself up for mischief, the Alcalde took hurried across. "Senor Caballador,” said the a sweep, as if ploughing out the line of some vast bishop, “ in the name of the Virgin, I enjoin you encampment, or tracing the pomerium for some to surrender your sword.” “My lord,” said future Rome; then, like thunder and lightning, Kate, “ I dare not do it with so many enemies with arms flying aloft in the air, down he came about me.” “But I,” replied the bishop, “beupon the trembling trench. But the horse re. come answerable to the law for your safe-keeping." fused the leap; and, as the only compromise that Upon which, with filial revererce, all parties his unlearned brain could suggest, he threw his dropped their swords. Kate being severely worship right over his ears, lodging him safely in wounded, the bishop led her into his palace. In a sand heap that rose with clouds of dust and an instant came the catastrophe; Kate's disscreams of birds into the morning air. Kate covery could no longer be delayed; the blood had now no time to send back her compliments flowed too rapidly; the wound was in her bosom. in a musical halloo. The Alcalde missed break- She requested a private interview with the bishop; ing his neck on this occasion very narrowly; but all was known in a moment; for surgeons and his neck was of no use to him in twenty minutes attendants were summoned hastily, and Kate had more, as the reader will soon find. Kate rode fainted. The good bishop pitied her, and had right onwards; and, coming in with a lady behind her attended in his palace; then removed to a her, horse bloody, and pace such as no hounds convent; then to a second at Lima; and, after could have lived with, she ought to have made a many months had passed, his report to the great sensation in Cuzco. But, unhappily, the Spanish Government at home of all the particupeople were all in bed.
lars, drew from the King of Spain and from the The steeple-chase into Cuzco had been a fine Pope an order that the Nun should be transferred headlong thing, considering the torrent, the to Spain. trench, the wounded horse, the lovely lady, with Yes, at length the warrior lady, the blooming her agonising fears, mounted behind Kate, to-cornet, this nun that is so martial, this dragoon gether with the meek dove-like dawn : but the that is so lovely, must visit again the home of her finale crowded together the quickest succession of childhood, which now for seventeen years she has changes that out of a melo-drama can ever have not seen. All Spain, Portugal, Italy, rang with been witnessed. Kate reached the convent in her adventures. Spain, from north to south, was safety ; carried into the cloisters, and delivered frantic with desire to behold her fiery child, whose like a parcel the fair Andalusian. But to rouse girlish romance, whose patriotic heroism electrithe servants caused delay; and on returning to fied the national imagination. The King of Spain the street through the broad gateway of the must kiss his faithful daughter, that would not convent, whom should she face but the Alcalde! suffer his banner to see dishonour. The Pope How he escaped the trench, who can tell? must kiss his wandering daughter, that henceforHe had no time to write memoirs; his horse wards will be a lamb travelling back into the was too illiterate. But he had escaped ; temper Christian fold. Potentates so great as these, not at all improved by that adventure, and when they speak words of love, do not speak in now raised to a hell of malignity by seeing vain. All was forgiven; the sacrilege, the bloodthat he had lost his prey. In the morning shed, the flight and the scorn of St. Peter's keys; light he now saw how to use his sword. He the pardons were made out, were signed, were attacked Kate with fury. Both were exhausted; sealed, and the chanceries of earth were satisfied. and Kate, besides that she had no personal quarrel Ah! what a day of sorrow and of joy was that with the Alcalde, having now accomplished her one day, in the first week of November, 1624, sole object in saving the lady, would have been when the returning Kate drew near to the shore glad of a truce. She could with difficulty wield of Andalusia—when, descending into the ship's her sword: and the Alcalde had so far the ad- barge, she was rowed to the piers of Cadiz by vantage, that he wounded Kate severely. That bargemen in the royal liveries—when she saw roused her ancient blood. She turned on him now every ship, street, house, convent, church, crowdwith determination. At that moment in rode ed, like a day of judgment, with humạn faces, two servants of the Alcalde, who took part with with men, with women, with children, all bending their master. These odds strengthened Kate's the lights of their flashing and their loving eyes resolution, but weakened her chances. Just then, upon herself. Forty myriads of people had gahowever, rode in, and ranged himself on Kate's thered in Cadiz alone. All Andalusia had turned side, the servant of the murdered Don Calderon. out to receive her. Ah! what joy, if she had In an instant, Kate had pushed her sword through not looked back to the Andes, to their dreadful