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Hackerlığa yeni başlayanlar...ayrıntılı cmd komutları (Alıntı)

26-01-2010 01:23
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ARKADAŞLAR Yorumları Bekliyomrum Lütfen




Alıntı

ARKADAŞLAR HACKER OLMAK İÇİN ÖNEMLİ OLAN Bİ ŞEY VAR ODA CMD KOMUTLARININ TAM ANLAMIYLA KULLANABİLMEK SİZİN İÇİN ARADIM BULDUM.

UMARIM YARARI DOKUNUR...

ASSOC [.ext[=]]ASSOC Dosya uzantısı ilişkilendirmesini görüntüler ya da değiştirir

.ext Dosya türüyle ilişkilendirilecek olan dosya uzantısını belirtir
fileType Dosya uzantısıyla ilişkilendirilecek olan dosya türünü belirtir

Geçerli dosya ilişkilendirmelerini görüntülemek için parametresiz olarak
ASSOC yazın. ASSOC, yalnızca bir dosya uzantısıyla çağrılırsa, bu dosya
uzantısının geçerli dosya ilişkilendirilmesi görüntülenir. Dosya türü
için hiçbir şey belirtmezseniz komut bu dosya uzantısının
ilişkilendirmesini siler

AT Bilgisayarda çalıştırılmak üzere komut ve program zamanlaması yapar.

AT komutu, komut ve programların belirtilen saat ve tarihte bir bilgisayarda
çalıştırılmalarını zamanlar. AT komutunun kullanılabilmesi için
Zamanlama hizmetinin çalışıyor olması gerekir.

AT [\\bilgisayaradı] [ [kimlik] [/DELETE] | /DELETE [/YES]]
AT [\\bilgisayaradı] saat [/INTERACTIVE]
[ /EVERY:date[,...] | /NEXT:date[,...]] "command"

\\bilgisayaradı Uzaktaki bir bilgisayarı belirtir. Bu parametre
atlanırsa, komutların zamanlaması yerel
bilgisayarda yapılır.
kimlik Zamanlaması yapılan bir komuta atanan kimlik
numarasıdır.
/delete Zamanlaması yapılmış bir komutu iptal eder. Kimlik
atlanmazsa, bilgisayarda
zamanlaması yapılan tüm komutlar iptal edilir.
/yes Tüm görevleri iptal etme komutuyla, daha çok onay
istenmediğinde kullanılır.
time Komutun çalıştırılacağı saati belirtir.
/interactive Görevin çalıştırıldığı sırada, oturum açmış olan
kullanıcının masaüstüyle görevin etkileşime
girmesini sağlar.
/every:date[,...] Belirtilen haftanın ya ayın gününde, komutu
çalıştırır. Tarih atlanırsa, ayın o günü
kabul edilir.
/next:date[,...] Belirtilen komutu, ertesi hafta aynı gün
çalıştırır (örneğin; next Thursday). Tarih atlanırsa,
ayın o günü kabul edilir.
"command" Çalıştırılacak olan Windows NT komutu ya da toplu iş
dosyası.

ATTRIB Dosya özniteliklerini görüntüler ya da değiştirir.

ATTRIB [+R | -R] [+A | -A ] [+S | -S] [+H | -H] [ [yol]
[/S ]

+ Öznitelik ayarlar.
- Öznitelik siler.
R Salt Okunur dosya özniteliği.
A Arşiv dosyası özniteliği.
S Sistem dosyası özniteliği.
H Gizli dosya özniteliği.
[yol]
Özniteliği işlenecek dosya ya da dosyaları belirtir
/S Geçerli klasörde ve tüm alt klasörlerinde eşleşen
dosyaları işler.
/D Klasörleri de işler.

BREAK Uzatılmış CTRL+C denetimini ayarlar ya da temizler.


DOS sistemindeki Genişletilmiş CTRL+C denetimini belirler ya da siler

Bu, DOS sistemleriyle uyumluluk için vardır. Windows XP altında hiçbir etkisi

yoktur.

Komut Uzantıları etkin, Windows XP platformunda çalışıyorsa,
bir hata ayıklayıcı tarafından ayıklama uygulandığında BREAK
komutu doğrudan yazılan bir kırılım noktası girer.

CACLS Dosyanın erişim denetim listelerini (ACLs) görüntüler ya da

değiştirir.

CACLS dosyaadı [/T] [/E] [/C] [/G kullanıcı:izin] [/R kullanıcı [...]]
[/P kullanıcı:izin [...]] [/D kullanıcı [...]]
dosyaadı ACLleri gösterir.
/T Geçerli dizinde ve tüm alt dizinlerde belirtilen tüm
ACLleri değiştirir.
/E Değiştirmek yerine ACL\'yi düzenle.
/C Erişim reddedildi hatalarında devam et.
/G kullanıcı:izin Belirtilen kullanıcı erişim haklarını ver.
İzin için: R Oku
W Yaz
C Değiştir (yaz)
F Tam denetim
/R kullanıcı Belirtilen kullanıcının erişim haklarını iptal et
(yalnızca /E ile geçerli).
/P kullanıcı:izin Belirtilen kullanıcının erişim haklarını değiştir.
İzin için: N Hiçbiri
R Oku
W Yaz
C Değiştir (yaz)
F Tam denetim
/D kullanıcı Belirtilen kullanıcının erişimini reddet.
Bir komutta birden çok dosya belirtmek için joker karakterleri
kullanılabilir. Bir komutta birden çok kullanıcı belirtebilirsiniz.

Kısaltmalar:
CI - Container Inherit.
ACE dizinlerce yüklenilir.
OI - Object Inherit.
ACE dosyalarca yüklenilir.
IO - Inherit Only.
ACE geçerli dosya/dizini için geçerli olmaz.

CALL Bir başkasından bir toplu iş programını çağırır.

CALL [sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı

batch-parameters Komut dosya için gereken komut satırı
bilgisini belirtir.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, CALL aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

CALL komutu artık etiketleri CALL hedefi olarak kabul ediyor. Sözdizimi
şöyledir:

CALL :etiket parametreleri

Belirtilen parametrelerle, yeni bir toplu iş dosyası bağlamı oluşturulup
denetim, etiketten sonra belirtilen tümceye geçer. Komut
dosyası sonuna iki kez ulaşmak için iki defa "exit" uygulamanız gerekir.
İlk defasında sonu okuduğunuzda, denetim, CALL tümcesinin hemen ardına
döner. İkinci defada toplu iş dosyasını çıkarır. GOTO /?
yazarak bir toplu iş dosyasından "döndüren" GOTO :EOF
uzantısı tanımını alın.

Ayrıca, toplu iş dosyası parametre başvurularının (%0, %1,
vb.) genişletilmesi aşağıdaki şekilde değişmiştir:


%* bir toplu iş dosyasında tüm parametreleri niteler (örnek; %1 %2 %3
%4 %5 ...)

Komut dosyası parametrelerinin değiştirilmesi (%n) geliştirilmiştir.
İsterseniz, aşağıdaki seçeneğe bağlı sözdizimini kullanabilirsiniz:

%~1 - çevresindeki tırnakları (") kaldırılarak %1
genişletilir
%~f1 - tam yol adına %1 genişletilir
%~d1 - yalnızca sürücü harfine %1 genişletilir
%~p1 - yalnızca yola %1 genişletilir
%~n1 - yalnızca dosya adına %1 genişletilir
%~x1 - yalnızca dosya uzantısına %1 genişletilir
%~s1 - genişletilen yol yalnızca kısa adları içerir
%~a1 - dosya özniteliklerine %1 genişletilir
%~t1 - dosya tarih/saatine %1 genişletilir
%~z1 - dosya boyutuna %1 genişletilir
%~$PATH:1 - PATH çevre değişkeninde listelenen dizinlerde arama
yapılıp ilk bulunanın tam adına %1 genişletilir.
Çevre değişkeni adı tanımlı değil aramada dosya
bulunamazsa, bu değiştirici boş dizeye genişletilir

Bileşik sonuç elde etmek için değiştiriciler birleştirilebilir:

%~dp1 - yalnızca bir sürücü harfi ve yoluna %1
genişletilir
%~nx1 - yalnızca bir dosya adına ve uzantısına %1
genişletilir
%~dp$PATH:1 - PATH çevre değişkeninde listelenen dizinlerde
%1 için arama yaparak ilk bulunanın
sürücü harfi ve yoluna genişletir.
%~ftza1 - DIR gibi çıktı satırına %1 genişletilir

Yukarıdaki örneklerde, %1 ile PATH başka geçerli değerlerle
değiştirilebilir. %~ sözdizimi geçerli bir parametre sayısıyla
bitirilir. %~ değiştiricileri, %* ile kullanılamaz

CD Geçerli dizinin adını değiştirir ya da görüntüler.

CHDIR [yol]
CHDIR [..]
CD [/D] [sürücü:][yol]
CD [..]

.. Ana dizine geçmek istediğinizi belirtir.

Belirtilen sürücüdeki geçerli dizini görüntülemek için CD sürücü: yazın.
Geçerli sürücü ve dizini görüntülemek için parametresiz CD yazın.

Sürücüdeki geçerli dizinle birlikte, geçerli sürücüyü değiştirmek için
/D anahtarını kullanın.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, CHDIR aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

Geçerli dizin dizesi, disk adlarında kullanıldığı büyük/küçük harf şeklinde
kullanılmak üzere dönüştürülür. Böylece, CD C:\TEMP, diskteki büyük/küçük
harf durumu bu şekildeyse, geçerli dizini C:\Temp olarak ayarlar.

CHDIR komutu boşlukları sınırlayıcı olarak kabul etmediğinden, adın başına
ve sonuna tırnak işareti koymaya gerek kalmadan, boşluk içeren bir alt
dizin adına CD komutu uygulanabilir. Örneğin:

uzantılar devredışı bırakıldığında yazacağınız
cd "\winnt\profiles\username\programs\start menu"

ile

cd \winnt\profiles\username\programs\start menu

aynıdır.

CHCP Etkin kod sayfası numarasını görüntüler ya da ayarlar.
Geçerli kod sayfası numarasını ayarlar ya da görüntüler.

CHCP

nnn Bir kod sayfası numarası belirtir.

Etkin kod sayfası numarasını görüntülemek için parametresiz CHCP yazın.

CHDIR Geçerli dizini değiştirir ya da görüntüler.

CHDIR [/D] [sürücü:][yol]
CHDIR [..]
CD [/D] [sürücü:][yol]
CD [..]

.. Ana dizine geçmek istediğinizi belirtir.

Belirtilen sürücüdeki geçerli dizini görüntülemek için CD sürücü: yazın.
Geçerli sürücü ve dizini görüntülemek için parametresiz CD yazın.

Sürücüdeki geçerli dizinle birlikte, geçerli sürücüyü değiştirmek için
/D anahtarını kullanın.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, CHDIR aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

Geçerli dizin dizesi, disk adlarında kullanıldığı büyük/küçük harf şeklinde
kullanılmak üzere dönüştürülür. Böylece, CD C:\TEMP, diskteki büyük/küçük
harf durumu bu şekildeyse, geçerli dizini C:\Temp olarak ayarlar.

CHDIR komutu boşlukları sınırlayıcı olarak kabul etmediğinden, adın başına
ve sonuna tırnak işareti koymaya gerek kalmadan, boşluk içeren bir alt
dizin adına CD komutu uygulanabilir. Örneğin:

uzantılar devredışı bırakıldığında yazacağınız
cd "\winnt\profiles\username\programs\start menu"

ile

cd \winnt\profiles\username\programs\start menu

aynıdır.

CHKDSK Bir diski gözden geçirip durum raporu verir.


Bir diski inceleyip bir durum raporu görüntüler.


CHKDSK dosyaadı]]] [/V] [/R] [/X] [/i] [/C] [/L[:boyut]]


birim Sürücü harfi, takma noktası ya da birim adını
(sonunda iki nokta üst üste işaretiyle) belirler.
dosya adı FAT/FAT32 yalnızca: Bölünmelere karşı denetlenecek dosyaları
belirtir.
/F Diskin üstündeki hataları giderir.
/V FAT/FAT32\'de: Diskteki her dosyanın tam yolunu ve
adını görüntüler.
NTFS\'de: Varsa temizleme iletilerini görüntüler.
/R Bozuk kesimlerin konumunu bulup okunabilir bilgiyi kurtarır
(/F gerekir).
/L:size Yalnızca NTFS: Günlük dosyası boyutunu belirtilen kilobayta
değiştirir. Boyut belirtilmezse, geçerli boyutu
görüntüler.
/X Gerekirse, birimi önce çıkmaya zorlar.
Birimin tüm açık tanıtıcıları geçersiz olur
(/F gerekir).
/I Yalnızca NTFS: Dizin girdilerini daha özensiz
bir biçimde denetler.
/C Yalnızca NTFS: Klasör yapısındaki döngülerin
denetlenmesini atlar.

/I ya da /C anahtarı, Chkdsk çalıştırmak için gereken süreyi, birimdeki
belirli denetimleri atlayarak azaltır.

CHKNTFS Önyükleme sırasında disk denetimini görüntüler ya da değiştirir.

CHKNTFS birim [...]
CHKNTFS /D
CHKNTFS /T
CHKNTFS /X birim [...]
CHKNTFS /C birim [...]

birim Sürücü harfi, takma noktası ya da birim adını
(sonunda iki nokta üst üste işaretiyle) belirler.
/D Makineyi varsayılan tepkiye geri getirir; önyükleme
sırasında tüm sürücüler gözden geçirilip kirli
olanlarda chkdsk çalıştırılır.
/Tat AUTOCHK başlangıç geri sayımını, saniye olarak
belirtilen süreye değiştirir. Süre belirtilmezse
geçerli ayarı görüntüler.
/X Bir sürücüyü varsayılan önyükleme anı gözden geçirmesine
dahil etmez.
Dahil edilmeyen sürücüler komut çağırmaları arasında
biriktirilmez.
/C Önyükleme anında bir sürücünün gözden geçirilmesini
zamanlar; sürücü kirliyse chkdsk çalıştırılır.

Hiçbir anahtar belirtilmezse, CHKNTFS belirtilen sürücünün kirli ya da
sonraki önyüklemede gözden geçirilip geçirilmeyeceğini görüntüler.

CLS Ekrandakileri siler.

CMD Windows komut yorumcusunun yeni bir kopyasını başlatır.

CMD [/A | /U] [/Q] [/D] [/E:ON | /E:OFF] [/F:ON | /F:OFF] [/V:ON | /V:OFF]
[ [/C | /K] dize]

/C Dizenin belirttiği komutu yürütüp sonlandırır
/K Dizenin belirttiği komutu yürütüp kalır
/S Dizenin /C ya da /K (bkz aşağı) sonrasında davranışını değiştirir
/Q Yankıyı kapatır
/D Kayıt defterinden (bkz. aşağı), AutoRun komutlarının
çalıştırılmasını devre dışı bırakır
/A Bir boru ya da dosyaya giden iç komutların çıktısının ANSI
olmasına neden olur
/U Bir boru ya da dosyaya giden iç komutların çıktısının
Unicode olmasına neden olur
/T:fg Ön plan/arka plan renklerini ayarlar (daha çok bilgi için
bkz. COLOR /?)
/E:ON Komut uzantılarını etkinleştir (bkz. aşağı)
/E:OFF Komut uzantılarını devre dışı bırak (bkz. aşağı)
/F:ON Dosya ve dizin adı tamamlama karakterlerini etkinleştir (bkz. aşağı)
/F:OFF Dosya ve dizin adı tamamlama karakterlerini devre dışı
bırak (bkz. aşağı)
/V:ON Geciken çevre değişkeni genişlemesini sınırlayıcı kullanarak
etkinleştir. Örneğin;, /V:ON, !var! değişkeninin var değişkenini
yürütme sırasında genişletmesini sağlar. var sözdizimi,
değişkenleri girdi anında genişletir; bu işlem, FOR döngüsündeyken
epey farklı bir durumdur.
/V:OFF Geciken çevre değişkeni genişlemesini devre dışı bırak.

\'&&\' komut ayırıcısı tarafından ayrılmış birden çok komutun,
tırnak işaretiyle belirlenmişse kabul edileceğini unutmayın. Ayrıca,
uyumluluk için /X, /E:ON ile aynı; /Y, /E:OFF ile aynı; /R ise
/C ile aynıdır. Diğer tüm anahtarlar göz ardı edilir.

/C ya da /K belirtilirse, anahtardan sonraki komut satırının kalanı
bir komut satırı olarak işlenir; tırnak (") karakterleri işlenirken,
aşağıdaki mantıktan yararlanılır:

1. Aşağıdaki koşulların tümü yerine getirilirse, komut satırındaki
tırnak karakterleri tutulur:

- hiçbir /S anahtarı yok
- yaklaşık iki tırnak karakteri
- iki tırnak karakteri arasında hiçbir özel karakter yok;
özel bunlardan biri: <>()@^|
- İki tırnak karakterleri arasında bir ya da birden çok boşluk
karakteri var
- iki tırnak karakteri arasındaki dize
çalıştırılabilir bir dosyanın adıdır.

2. Yoksa, eski davranış, ilk karakterin bir tırnak karakteri
olup olmadığını görüp, bu durumda öncü karakteri sıyırıp
toplu iş dosyasındaki son tırnak karakterini kaldırarak,
son karakterden sonraki metni tutar.

/D, komut satırında belirtilmediyse, CMD.EXE başlatıldığında,
aşağıdaki REG_SZ/REG_EXPAND_SZ kayıt defteri değişkenlerini arayıp
ikisi ya da ikisinden biri varsa, önce onlar yürütülür.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\AutoRun

ve/veya

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\AutoRun

Varsayılan olarak Komut Uzantıları etkindir. Uzantıları, belli bir
başlatma için /E:OFF anahtarını kullanarak devre dışı bırakabilirsiniz.
Uzantıları, CMD.EXE\'nin tüm etkinleştirilmelerinde etkinleştirebilir
ya da devre dışı bırakabilirsiniz; makine ve/veya kullanıcı oturum açma
oturumunda, kayıt defterinden REGEDT32.EXE\'yi kullanarak aşağıdaki
REG_DWORD değerlerinin ikisini ya da ikisinden birini ayarlayın:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\EnableExtensions

ve/veya

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\EnableExtensions

0x1 ya da 0x0. Kullanıcıya özel ayar makine ayarının
üzerine çıkar. Komut satırı anahtarları kayıt defteri ayarları
üzerine çıkar.

Komut uzantıları aşağıdaki komutlara değişiklik ve/veya eklemeyi
içerir:

DEL ya da ERASE
COLOR
CD ya da CHDIR
MD ya da MKDIR
PROMPT
PUSHD
POPD
SET
SETLOCAL
ENDLOCAL
IF
FOR
CALL
SHIFT
GOTO
START (ayrıca dış komut etkinleştirme değişikliklerini içerir)
ASSOC
FTYPE

Belirli ayarları almak için komutadı /? yazıp özelliklerini görüntüleyin.

Geciken çevre değişkeni genişletmesi varsayılan olarak etkinleştirilmemiş.
Geciken çevre değişkeni genişletmesini, /V:ON ya da /V:OFF anahtarıyla
tüm CMD.EXE\'nin belirli etkinleşmelerini etkinleştirip devre dışı
bırakabilirsiniz. Uzantıları, CMD.EXE\'nin tüm etkinleştirilmelerinde
etkinleştirebilir ya da devre dışı bırakabilirsiniz; makine ve/veya
kullanıcı oturum açma oturumunda, kayıt defterinden REGEDT32.EXE\'yi
kullanarak aşağıdaki REG_DWORD değerlerinin ikisini ya da ikisinden birini
ayarlayın:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\DelayedExpansion

ve/veya

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\DelayedExpansion

0x1 ya da 0x0. Kullanıcıya özel ayar makine ayarının
üzerine çıkar. Komut satırı anahtarları kayıt defteri ayarları
üzerine çıkar.

Geciken çevre değişkeni genişletilmesi devredeyse, çalıştırma sırasında
bir ünlem karakteri bir çevre değişkeni değerinin
yerine kullanılabilir.

Dosya ve Dizin adı tamamlama varsayılan olarak etkinleştirilmemiş. Dosya
adı tamalamasını, /V:ON ya da /V:OFF anahtarıyla tüm CMD.EXE\'nin belirli
etkinleşmelerini etkinleştirip devre dışı bırakabilirsiniz. Uzantıları,
CMD.EXE\'nin tüm etkinleştirilmelerinde etkinleştirebilir ya da devre dışı
bırakabilirsiniz; makine ve/veya kullanıcı oturum açma oturumunda,
kayıt defterinden REGEDT32.EXE\'yi kullanarak aşağıdaki REG_DWORD
değerlerinin ikisini ya da ikisinden birini ayarlayın:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\CompletionChar
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\PathCompletionChar

ve/veya

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\CompletionChar
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Command Processor\PathCompletionChar

belirli bir fonksiyon için kullanılmak üzere bir denetim karakterinin
onaltılık değeri (örnek: 0x4, Ctrl-D ve 0x6, Ctrl-F). Kullanıcıya özel
ayar makine ayarının üzerine çıkar. Komut satırı anahtarları kayıt
defteri ayarları üzerine çıkar.

Tamamlama /F:ON anahtarıyla etkinleştirildiyse, kullanılan iki denetim
karakteri, Ctrl-D, dizin adı tamamlaması için kullanılırken Ctrl-F ise
dosya adı tamamlaması için kullanılır. Kayıt defterinde belirli bir
tamamlama karakterini devre dışı bırakmak için geçerli bir denetim
karakteri olmadığından boşluk için (0x20) değeri kullanın.

Denetim karakterlerinden birini girdiğinizde, tamamlama etkin duruma
getirilir. Tamamlama fonksiyonu yol dizesini imlecin sol yanına
getirip hiçbiri hazırda değilse bir joker karakteri ekleyip
eşleşen bir yol listesi oluşturur. Ardından ilk eşleşen
yol görüntülenir. Hiçbir yol eşleşmezse, bim sesi çıkarıp görüntüden
çıkar. Sonra, aynı denetim karakterine tekrar basılırsa
eşleş yol listesinde ilerlenmeye başlar. ÜskKrkt
tuşuyla denetim karakterine basmak, listede geriye doğru ilerlemeye
neden olur. Satırı herhangi bir şekilde düzenleyip denetim
karakterine yeniden bastığınızda, kaydedilmiş eşleşen yol listesi
bırakılıp yeni bir tanesi üretilir. Dosya ile dizin tamamlama
arasında geçiş yaptığınızda aynısı olur. İki denetim karakteri
arasındaki tek fark, dizin tamamlama karakteri yalnızca dizin adlarıyla
eşleşirken, dosya tamamlama karakteri hem dosya hem dizin adlarını
eşleştirir. Dosya tamamlaması, (CD, MD ya da RD gibi) herhangi bir
yerleşik dizin komutlarında kullanılırsa dizin tamamlaması kabul edilir.

Tamamlama kodu, boşluk ya da diğer özel karakter içeren
dosya adlarını, eşleşen yolun başına ve sonuna tırnak işareti koyarak
doğru şekilde işler. Ayrıca, yedekledikten sonra bir satırdan tamamlamayı
etkin duruma getirirseniz, tamamlanma noktasındaki imlecin sağındaki
etkinleşmiş metin atılır.

Tırnak gerektiren özel karakterler şunlardır:
<space>
&()[]{}^=;!\'+,`~

COLOR Varsayılan konsol arka plan ve ön plan renklerini ayarlar.
Konsolun varsayılan ön plan ve arka plan renklerini ayarlar.

COLOR

attr Konsol çıktısının renk özniteliğini belirtir

Renk öznitelikleri İKİ onaltılık haneyle belirtilir; birincisi
arka plana, ikincisi de ön plana karşılık gelir. Her bir hane
aşağıdaki değerlerden biri olabilir:

0 = Siyah 8 = Gri
1 = Mavi 9 = Açık Mavi
2 = Yeşil A = Açık Yeşil
3 = Deniz Mavisi B = Açık Deniz Mavisi
4 = Kırmızı C = Açık Kırmızı
5 = Mor D = Açık Mor
6 = Sarı E = Açık Sarı
7 = Beyaz F = Parlak Beyaz

Hiçbir parametre verilmezse, bu komut, rengi CMD.EXE\'nin başlatıldığı
zamanki durumuna geri yükler. Bu değer geçerli konsol penceresinden,
/T komut satırı anahtarından ya da DefaultColor kayıt defteri
değerinden gelir.

COLOR komutu, ön plan ve arka plan rengi aynı olarak bir COLOR komutu
çalıştırma girişiminde, ERRORLEVEL\'i 1\'e ayarlar.

Örnek: "COLOR fc" parlak beyaz üzerinde açık kırmızı sonuç verir

COMP İki dosya ya da dosya kümesinin içeriğini karşılaştırır.

COMP [/D] [/L] [/N=number] [/C] [/OFF]

veri1 Karşılaştırılacak ilk dosya konumu ve adını belirtir.
veri2 Karşılaştırılacak ikinci dosya konumu ve adını belirtir.
/D Farkları ondalık biçimde görüntüler.
/A Farkları ASCII karakterlerle görüntüler.
/L Farklı satır numaralarını görüntüler.
/N=number Her dosyada yalnızca ilk belirtilen satır numaraları
karşılaştırılır.
/C Dosyaları karşılaştırırken ASCII harf büyük/küçük durumunu
göz ardı eder.
/OFF Çevrimdışı özniteliği olan dosyaları atlamaz

Dosya kümelerini karşılaştırmak için veri1 ile veri2 parametreleriyle
joker karakter kullanın.

COMPACT NTFS bölümündeki dosyaların sıkıştırmasını gösterir ya da yapar.

COMPACT [/C | /U] [/S[:dir]] [/i] [/F] [/Q] ]

/C Belirtilen dosyaları sıkıştırır. Daha sonra eklenen dosyaların
sıkıştırılması için dizinler işaretlenir.
/U Belirtilen dosyaların sıkıştırmasını açar. Daha sonra eklenen
dosyaların sıkıştırılmaması için dizinler işaretlenir.
/S Verilen dizin ve alt dizinlerdeki dosyalarda belirtilen işlemi
uygular. Varsayılan "dir" geçerli olan dizindir.
/A Gizli ya da sistem öznitelmiğine sahip dosyaları
görüntüler. Varsayılan olarak bu dosyalar göz ardı edilir.
/I Hata oluşsa dahi, belirtilen işlemi uygulamaya
devam eder. Varsayılan olarak, hata oluşursa COMPACT durur.
/F Halen sıkıştırılmış olanlarda dahi sıkıştırma işlemini
belirtilen tüm dosyalarda yapılmasına zorlar. Varsayılan
olarak sıkıştırılmış olan dosyalar atlanır.
/Q Yalnızca en temel bilgiyi bildirir.
dosyaadı Bir düzen, dosya ya da dizin belirtir.

Parametresiz kullanılırsa, COMPACT geçerli dizinin ve içerdiği dosyaların
sıkıştırma durumunu görüntüler. Birden çok dosya adı ile joker karakteri
kullanabilirsiniz. Birden çok parametrenin arasına boşluk konulmalıdır.

CONVERT FAT birimleri NTFS\'ye dönüştürür. Geçerli sürücüyü dönüştüremezsiniz.

CONVERT birim /FS:NTFS

birim Sürücü harfi, takma noktası ya da birim adını
(sonunda iki nokta üst üste işaretiyle) belirler.
/FS:NTFS Birimin NTFS\'ye dönüştürüleceğini belirler.
/V Dönüştürmenin ayrıntılı modda çalıştırılmasını belirtir.

COPY Bir ya da birden çok dosyayı bir başka konuma kopyalar.

COPY [/Y | /-Y] [/Z] [/A | /B ] kaynak [/A | /B]
[+ kaynak [/A | /B] [+ ...]] [hedef [/A | /B]]

kaynak Kopyalanacak dosya ya da dosyaları belirtir.
/A Bir ASCII metin dosyasını gösterir.
/B Bir ikili dosyayı gösterir.
/D Hedef dosyanın şifresi çözülmüş olarak oluşturulmasını sağlar
hedef Yeni dosya(lar) için dizin ve/veya dosyaadı belirtir.
/V Yeni dosyaların sorunsuz yazıldığını doğrular.
/N 8nokta3 olmayan bir adı olan dosyayı kopyalarken, olanağı
varsa, kısa dosyaadı kullanır.
/Y Var olan bir hedef dosyasının üzerine yazma
onaylamasının size sorulmasını engeller.
/-Y Var olan bir hedef dosyasının üzerine yazmayı
isteyip istemediğinizi sorar.
/Z Yeniden başlatılabilir modda, ağ dosyalarını kopyalar.

/Y anahtarı, COPYCMD çevre değişkeninde önceden ayarlanabilir.
Komut satırında, bu işlem /-Y anahtarıyla geçersiz hale getirilir.
Varsayılan olarak, COPY komutu bir toplu iş dosyasından çalıştırılmadığı
sürece üzerine yazmada kullanıcıdan onay istenir.

Dosyaları birbiri ardına eklemek için hedef olarak tek bir dosya,
kaynak olarak (joker karakter ya da dosya1+dosya2+dosya3 biçiminde)
birden çok dosya belirtin.

DATE Tarihi görüntüler ya da ayarlar.

DATE [/T | date]

Geçerli tarih ayarlarını görüntülemek ve yeni tarih için komut istemi
almak için parametresiz DATE yazın. Aynı tarihi korumak için ENTER\'a basın.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, DATE komutu, komuta yeni bir tarih
sormadan yalnızca geçerli tarihi göstermesini bildiren /T
anahtarını destekler.

DEL Bir ya da birden çok dosyayı siler.

DEL [/P] [/F] [/Q] [/A[[:]öznitelik]] ad
ERASE [/P] [/F] [/Q] [/A[[:]öznitelik]] ad

ad Bir ya da birden çok dosya ya da dizin listesi belirtir.
Birden çok dosya silmek için joker karakteri kullanılabilir.
Bir dizin belirtildiğinde, dizin içindeki tüm
dosyalar silinir.

/P Her bir dosyayı silmeden önce onay ister.
/F Salt okunur dosyaların silinmeye zorlar.
/S Belirtilen dosyaları, tüm alt dizinlerden siler.
/Q Sessiz mod, genel joker karakterinde silinme olanağı
varsa sorma
/A Özniteliği bağlı olarak silinecek dosyaları seçer
öznitelik R Salt okunur dosyalar S Sistem dosyaları
H Gizli dosyalar A Arşivlenmeye hazır dosyalar
- Öneki olumsuz anlamdadır

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, DEL ile ERASE aşağıdaki gibi değişir:

/S anahtarının anlamları geri çevrilerek
size bulamadığı değil, yalnızca silinen dosyaları gösterir.

DIR Bir dizindeki dosya ve alt dizin listesini görüntüler.

DIR [yol] [/A[[:]öznitelik]] [/C] [/N]
[/O[[:]sıradüzeni]] [/P] [/Q] [/T[[:]zamanalanı]] [/W] [/X] [/4]

[yol][dosyaadı]
Listelenecek, sürücü, dizin ve/veya dosyaları belirtir.

/A Belirtilen öznitelikteki dosyaları görüntüler.
öznitelik D Dizin R Salt okunur dosyalar
H Gizli dosyalar A Arşivlenmeye hazır dosyalar
S Sistem dosyaları - Öneki olumsuz anlamdadır
/B Yalın biçim kullanır (başlık bilgisi ya da özet olmadan).
/C Dosya boyutlarında bin ayırıcısını gösterir. Bu varsayılan
değerdir. Ayırıcının görüntülenmesini önlemek için
/-C kullanın.
/D Aynı genişlikte; dosyalar sütuna göre sıralanmış.
/L Küçük harf kullanır.
/N Dosyaadının en sağda olduğu yeni uzun liste biçimi.
/O Sıralı düzende dosyaya göre listele.
sıradüzeni N Ada göre (abece) S Boyuta göre (küçükten büyüğe)
E Uzantıya göre (abece) D Tarih/saate göre (eskiden yeniye)
G Önce grup dizinleri - Önek sırasını tersine çevirir
/P Her ekran dolusu bilginin ardından duraklar.
/Q Dosyanın sahibini gösterir.
/S Dosyaları belirtilen dizinde ve tüm alt dizinlerde görüntüler.
/T Sıralama için kullanılan zaman alanının görüntüleme ve
kullanımını denetler
zamanalanı C Oluşturma
A Son Erişim
W Son Yazma
/W Geniş liste biçimi kullanır.
/X 8nokta3 biçiminde olmayan dosya adı için üretilen kısa ad
görüntüler. Biçim, uzun addan önce eklenmiş
kısa adlı /N gibidir. Hiçbir kısa ad yoksa, yerine
boşluk görüntülenir.
/4 Dört haneli yılı gösterir

DIRCMD çevre değişkeninde, anahtarlar önceden ayarlanabilir. Önceden
ayarlanmış anahtarları, herhangi bir anahtarın önüne - (tire) getirerek
geçersiz kılın; örneğin, /-W.

DISKCOMP İki disket içeriğini karşılaştırır.

DISKCOPY ][/V]

DISKCOPY Bir disketin içeriğini diğerine kopyalar.

DISKCOPY [sürücü1: [sürücü2:]][/V]

/V Bilginin doğru kopyalandığını doğrular.

Her iki disket de aynı türde olmalıdır.
Sürücü1 ve sürücü2 için aynı sürücüyü belirtebilirsiniz.

DOSKEY Komut satırı düzenler, Windows komutu geri çağırıp makro oluşturur.

DOSKEY [/REINSTALL][/LISTSIZE=boyut] [/MACROS[:ALL | :exename]]
[/HISTORY] [/INSERT | /OVERSTRIKE] [/EXENAME=exename] [/MACROFILE=dosyaadı]
]

/REINSTALL Yeni bir Doskey kopyası yükler.
/LISTSIZE=size Komut geçmişi arabelleği boyutunu belirler.
/MACROS Tüm Doskey makrolarını görüntüler.
/MACROS:ALL Doskey makrosu olan tüm çalıştırılabilirlerin Doskey
makrolarını görüntüler.
/MACROS:exename Verilen çalıştırılabilirin tüm Doskey makrolarını
görüntüler.
/HISTORY Belleğe depolanan tüm komutları görüntüler.
/INSERT Yeni girdiğiniz metnin eskisi yerine ekleneceğini
belirtir.
/OVERSTRIKE Yeni metnini eskisinin üzerine yazılacağını belirtir.
/EXENAME=exename Çalıştırılabiliri belirtir.
/MACROFILE=filename Yüklenecek makro dosyasını belirtir.
macroname Oluşturduğunuz makronunu adını belirtir.
text Kaydetmek istediğiniz komutları belirtir.

YUKARI ve AŞAĞI komutları geri çağırır; ESC komut satırını temizler; F7 komut
geçmişini görüntüler; ALT+F7 komut geçmişini temizler; F8 komut geçmişinde
arama yapar; F9 numarasıyla komut seçer; ALT+F10 makro tanımlarını temizler.

Aşağıda, Doskey makro tanımları özel kodları vardır:
$T Komut ayırıcısı. Bir makroda birden çok komut sağlar.
$1-$9 Toplu iş parametreleri. Toplu iş programlarında %1-%9 karşılığıdır.
$* Komut satırında makronun ardından gelen simgeyle değiştirilen her şey.

ECHO İleti görüntüler ya da komut yankısını açıp kapatır.

ECHO
ECHO

Geçerli yankı ayarlarını görüntülemek için parametresiz olarak ECHO yazın.

ENDLOCAL Bir toplu iş dosyasındaki çevre yerelleştirmesini sonlandırır.

ENDLOCAL sonrasında yapılan çevre kaydedilen değişikliklerin
toplu iş dosyası yereli değildir; toplu iş dosyasının sonlandırılmasında,
önceki ayarlar yüklenmez.

ENDLOCAL

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, ENDLOCAL aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

Karşılık gelen SETLOCAL, yeni ENABLEEXTENSIONS ya da DISABLEEXTENSIONS
seçeneklerini kullanarak komut uzantılarını etkinleştirir ya da devre
dışı bırakırsa, ENDLOCAL sonrasında, komut uzantılarının etkin/devre dışı
durumu eşleşen SETLOCAL komutu yürütülmesinden önceki durumuna
geri yüklenir.

ERASE Bir ya da birden çok dosyayı siler.

DEL [/P] [/F] [/Q] [/A[[:]öznitelik]] ad
ERASE [/P] [/F] [/Q] [/A[[:]öznitelik]] ad

ad Bir ya da birden çok dosya ya da dizin listesi belirtir.
Birden çok dosya silmek için joker karakteri kullanılabilir.
Bir dizin belirtildiğinde, dizin içindeki tüm
dosyalar silinir.

/P Her bir dosyayı silmeden önce onay ister.
/F Salt okunur dosyaların silinmeye zorlar.
/S Belirtilen dosyaları, tüm alt dizinlerden siler.
/Q Sessiz mod, genel joker karakterinde silinme olanağı
varsa sorma
/A Özniteliği bağlı olarak silinecek dosyaları seçer
öznitelik R Salt okunur dosyalar S Sistem dosyaları
H Gizli dosyalar A Arşivlenmeye hazır dosyalar
- Öneki olumsuz anlamdadır

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, DEL ile ERASE aşağıdaki gibi değişir:

/S anahtarının anlamları geri çevrilerek
size bulamadığı değil, yalnızca silinen dosyaları gösterir.

EXIT CMD.EXE programından (komut yorumcusu) çıkar.

FC İki dosyayı ya da dosya kümesini karşılaştırıp aralarındaki farkı

görüntüler.


FC [/A] [/C] [/LBn] [/N] [/OFF] [/T] [/u] [/W] [/nnnn]
[yol1]dosyaadı1 [sürücü2:][yol2]dosyaadı2
FC /B [sürücü1:][yol1]dosyaadı1 [sürücü2:][yol2]dosyaadı2

/A Her bir fark kümesinin ilk ve son satırını görüntüler.
/B İkili bir karşılaştırma yapar.
/C Harflerin büyük/küçük durumunu göz ardı eder.
/L Dosyaları ASCII metni olarak karşılaştırır.
/LBn Belirtilen satır sayısına en çok ardıl eşleşmemeyi
ayarlar.
/N Satır numaralarını bir ASCII karşılaştırmasında görüntüler.
/OFF[LINE] Çevrimdışı özniteliği olan dosyaları atlamaz.
/T Sekmeleri boşluklara genişletmez.
/U Dosyaları UNICODE metin dosyası olarak karşılaştır.
/W Aralıkları (sekme ya da boşluk) karşılaştırma için sıkıştırır.
/nnnn Bir eşleşmemenin ardından eşlemesi gereken ardıl satır sayısını
belirtir.
[sürücü1:][yol1]dosyaadı1
Karşılaştırılacak ilk dosya ya da dosya kümesini belirtir.
[sürücü2:][yol2]dosyaadı2
Karşılaştırılacak ikinci dosya ya da dosya kümesini belirtir.

FIND Bir dosyada ya da dosyalarda bir metin dizesini arar.

FIND [/V] [/C] [/N] [/OFF[LINE]] "dize" [[sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı[ ...]]

/V Belirtilen dizeyi İÇERMEYEN tüm satırları görüntüler.
/C Dizeyi içeren satırların yalnızca sayımını görüntüler.
/N Görüntülenen satırlarla birlikte satır numaralarını görüntüler.
/I dize ararken büyük/küçük harf durumuna bakmaz.
/OFF[LINE] Çevrimdışı özniteliği olan dosyaları atlama.
"dize" Bulunacak metin dizesini belirtir.
[sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı
Aranacak dosya ya da dosyaları belirtir.

Bir yol belirtilmezse, FIND girilen metni komut isteminde ya da
bir başka komuttan çıkarılanda arar.

FINDSTR Dosyalarda dize arar.

FINDSTR [/E] [/R] [/i] [/X] [/V] [/N] [/P] [/F:dosya]
[/C:dize] [/G:dosya] [/D:dir list] [/A:renk özniteliği] [/OFF[LINE]]
[dizeler] [[yol]dosyaadı[ ...]]

/B Satırın başındaysa düzenle eşleşir.
/E Satırın sonundaysa düzenle eşleşir.
/L Arama dizelerini anlamlarıyla kullanır.
/R Arama dizelerini olağan dize olarak kullanır.
/S Geçerli dizinde ve tüm alt dizinlerinde eşleşen dosyaların
aramasını yapar.
/I Aramanın, büyük/küçük harf duyarlı olmadığını belirtir.
/X Tam olarak eşleşen satırları basar.
/V Yalnızca eşleşme olmayan satırları basar.
/N Eşleşen her satırın öncesi satır numarasını basar.
/M Bir dosyada eşleme varsa yalnızca dosya adını basar.
/O Her eşleşen satır öncesinde karakter ofseti basar.
/P Basılamayan karakteri olan dosyaları atlar
/OFF[LINE] Özniteliği çevrimdışı olan dosyaları atlama.
/A:attr Renk özniteliğini iki onaltılık haneyle belirtir.
Bkz. "color /?"
/F:dosya Belirtilen dosyadan dosya listesini okur (/ konsol demektir).
/C:dize Belirtilen dizeyi gerçek arama dizesi olarak kullanır.
/G:dosya Belirtilen dosyadan arama dizelerini alır (/ konsol demektir).
/D:dir Dizinlerin noktalı virgülle ayrılmış listesinde arama yapın
dizeler Aranacak metin.
[yol]dosyaadı
Aranacak dosya ya da dosyaları belirtir.

Parametre /C ile önceden sabitlenmediği sürece, çoklu arama dizelerini
ayırmak için boşluk kullanın. Örneğin; \'FINDSTR "herkese merhaba" x.y\'
"herkese" ya da "merhaba" sözcüklerini x.y dosyasında arar.
\'FINDSTR /C:"herkese merhaba" x.y\' yalnızca "herkese merhaba"
sözcüklerini x.y dosyasında arar.

Olağan deyim kolay kılavuzu:
. Joker: Herhangi bir karakter
* Tekrar: Önceki karakter ya da sınıfın sıfır ya da
daha çok yinelemesi
^ Satır konumu: Satır başlangıcı
$ Satır konumu: Satır sonu
Karakter sınıfı: Kümedeki tek bir karakter
[^class] Ters sınıf: Kümede bulunmayan tek karakter
Aralık: Belirtilen aralıktaki karakterler
\x Esc: X **** karakterinin gerçek kullanımı
\<xyz Sözcük konumu: Sözcük başı
xyz\> Sözcük konumu: Sözcük sonu

FINDSTR olağan deyimleriyle ilgili tüm bilgiyi, çevrimiçi
Komut Başvurusu\'nda bulabilirsiniz.

FOR Dosya kümesindeki her bir dosyada belirli bir komutu çalıştırır.

FOR %değişken IN (küme) DO komut [komut parametresi]

%değişken Değiştirilebilir tek harfli bir parametre belirtir.
(küme) Bir ya da birden çok dosya kümesi belirtir.
Joker karakter kullanılabilir.
komut Her bir dosya için yürütülecek komutu belirtir.
komut parametresi
Belirtilen komutun parametre ya da anahtarlarını belirtir.

Bir toplu iş dosyası programında FOR komutunu kullanmak için %%değişken
yerine %değişken belirtin. Değişken adları büyük küçük harf duyarlı
olduğundan, %i değişkeni, %I değişkeninden farklıdır.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, aşağıdaki FOR komutu ek biçimleri
desteklenir:

FOR /D %değişken IN (küme) DO komut [komut parametre]

Ayar joker karateri içerirse, dosya adları yerine dizin adlarına
eşleme için belirtir.

FOR /R [[sürücü:]yol] %değişken IN (küme) DO komut [komut parametre]

[sürücü:]path içinde köklenmiş dizin ağacını, FOR
tümcesini ağacın her dizininde çalıştırarak yürütür. /R sonrasında
hiçbir dizin belirtimi yapılmazsa, geçerli dizin kabul
edilir. Küme yalnızca tek nokta (.) karakteriyse
yalnızca dizin ağacını numaralandırır.

FOR /L %variable IN (start,step,end) DO command

Küme, adım oranıyla, başlangıçtan sona sayı dizisidir.
Böylece, (1,1,5), 1 2 3 4 5 dizisini üretirken (5,-1,1) de
(5 4 3 2 1)dizisini üretir

FOR /F ["seçenek"] %değişken IN (dosya küme) DO komut [komut parametre]
FOR /F ["seçenek"] %değişken IN ("dize") DO komut [komut parametre]
FOR /F ["seçenek"] %değişken IN (\'komut\') DO komut [komut parametre]

or, if usebackq option present:

FOR /F ["seçenek"] %değişken IN (dosya küme) DO komut [komut parametre]
FOR /F ["seçenek"] %değişken IN (\'dize\') DO komut [komut parametre]
FOR /F ["seçenek"] %değişken IN (`komut`) DO komut [komut parametre]

filenameset bir ya da birden çok dosya adıdır. Her bir dosya açılır,
okunur ardından sonraki filenameset\'deki dosyaya devam etmeden
önce işlemden geçirilir. İşleme, dosyayı okuma, tek tek metin
satırlarına ayırdıktan sonra her satırı sıfır ya da daha çok
jetonla inceler. Döngünün gövdesi daha sonra bulunan jeton dizesine
ayarlı değişken değeriyle çağrılır. Varsayılan olarak, /F her
dosyanın her satırından, ilk boş ayrı jetonu gönderir.
Boş satırlar geçilir. Seçeneği bağlı "seçenek" parametresini
belirterek varsayılan davranışı geçersiz kılabilirsiniz. Bu,
farklı inceleme seçeneklerini belirten bir ya da birden çok anahtar
sözcüğü içeren tırnak içinde dizedir. Anahtar sözcükler şunlardır:

eol=c - satır sonu açıklama karakterini belirtir
(yalnızca tek)
geç=n - dosyanın başında geçilecek olan
satır sayısını belirtir.
delims=xxx - bir sınırlayıcı kümesini belirtir. Bu, varsayılan
sınırlayıcı, boşluk ve sekme kümesini devre dışı
bırakır.
tokens=x,y,m-n - her değişiklik için her satırdan
gövdeye gönderilecek olan jetonları belirtir.
Bu, ek değişken adlarının ayrılmasına
neden olur. m-n biçimi, bir aralıktır;
bu aralık n. jetonlar yolunca m. belirtir.
Jeton= dizenin son karakteri joker karakteriyse
ek değişken ayrılarak son jeton incelendikten
sonra satırda kalan metni alır.
usebackq - yeni anlamların geçerli olduğunu belirtir;
bu durumda ters tırnaklı dize komut olarak
yürütülürken tek tırnaklı dize gerçek dize
komutu olarak filenameset\'da tırnak dosya
adlarında, çift tırnağın kullanımına olanak
sağlar.

Bazı örnekler yardımcı olabilir:

FOR /F "eol=; tokens=2,3* delims=, " %i in (myfile.txt) do @echo %i %j %k

myfile.txt dosyasındaki her satırı, noktalı virgülle başlayan satırları
2. ve 3. jetonu for body için her satırdan gönderen
virgül ve/veya boşlukla sınırlanan jetonları göz ardı ederek inceler.
For body tümcelerinin, 2. jetonu almak için %i başvurusuna, 3. jetonu
almak için %j başvurusuna ve üçüncünün ardından kalan tüm jetonları
almak için %k başvurusuna dikkat edin. Boşluk içeren
dosya adları için, dosyadalarını çift tırnakla belirtmelisiniz.
Çift tırnağı bu şekilde kullanmak için usebackq
seçeneğini de kullanmanız gerekir; yoksa çift tırnak gerçek anlamda
incelemede kullanılan tanımlayıcı bir dize olarak yorumlanır.

%i açıkça for tümcesinde bildirilir; %j ile %k
açıkça tokens= option yoluyla bildirilir. tokens= line yoluyla
26 adet jetona dek belirtebilirsiniz; bunun \'z\' ya da \'Z\' harfinden
daha yüksek bir değişken bildirme girişimi olmaması gerekir.
Unutmayın; FOR değişken adları büyük/küçük harf duyarlı, geneldir;
bir defad en çok toplam 52 etkine ulaşabilirsiniz.

FOR /F inceleme mantığını ara dizede de kullanabilirsiniz; bunun
için ayraç içindeki filenameset\'i tek tırnak karakterleri kullanarak
tırnaklı bir dize haline getirmelisiniz. Bir dosyadan tek bir
satır girdisi olarak görülüp incelenir.

Son olarak, FOR /F komutunu, bir komutun çıktısını incelemek için
kullanabilirsiniz. Bu, ayraç içindeki filenameset\'i geri tırnaklı bir
dize haline getirerek yapılır. Komut satırı olarak görülür;
bağımlı bir CMD.EXE\'ye gönderilirek çıktı bellekte yakalanıp
dosyaymış gibi incelenir. Böylece aşağıdaki örnek:

FOR /F "usebackq delims==" %i IN (`set`) DO @echo %i

geçerli çevredeki çevre değişken adlarını numaralandırır.

Aynı zamanda, FOR değişken değişimi başvuruları geliştirilmiştir.
Şimdi aşağıdaki seçime bağlı sözdizimini kullanabilirsiniz:

%~I - tırnakları kaldırarak %I genişletilir (")
%~fI - %I tam nitelendirilmiş yol adına genişletilir
%~dI - %I yalnızca bir sürücü harfine genişletilir
%~pI - %I yalnızca bir yola genişletilir
%~nI - %I yalnızca bir dosya adına genişletilir
%~xI - %I yalnızca bir dosya uzantısına genişletilir
%~sI - genişletilen yol yalnızca kısa adları içerir
%~aI - %I dosyanın dosya niteliklerine genişletilir
%~tI - %I dosyanın tarih/saat özniteliğine genişletilir
%~zI - %I dosyanın boyutuna genişletilir
%~$PATH:I - PATH ortam değişkeninde listelenen dizinleri arar
ve %I ilk bulunanın tam niteleyici adına genişletilir.
Ortam değişkeni tanımlı değilse veya dosya arama
tarafından bulunmazsa, bu değiştirici boş bir dizeye
genişletilir.

Değiştiriciler, bileşik sonuçlar için birleştirilebilir:

%~dpI - %I yalnızca bir sürücü harfine ve yola genişletilir
%~nxI - %I yalnızca bir dosya adına ve uzantısına genişletilir
%~fsI - %I yalnızca kısa adlı bir tam yol adına genişletilir
%~dp$PATH:I - %I için PATH ortam değişkeninde listelenen dizinleri
arar ve ilk bulunanın sürücü harfine ve yoluna
genişletilir.
%~ftzaI - %I DIR gibi bir çıktı satırına genişletilir

Yukarıdaki örneklerde %I ve PATH başka geçerli değerlerle değiştirilebilir.
%~ sözdizimi, geçerli bir FOR değişken adıyla sona erdirilir.
%I gibi büyük harfli değişken adları kullanmak daha okunabilir yapar ve
büyük küçük harf duyarlı olmayan değiştiricilerle karıştırılmasını engeller.

FORMAT Windows\'da kullanmak üzere bir diski biçimlendirir.

FORMAT birim [/FS:file-system] [/V:etiket] [/Q] [/A:boyut]
FORMAT birim [/V:etiket] [/Q] [/F:boyut]
FORMAT birim [/V:etiket] [/Q] [/T:iz /N:kesim]
FORMAT birim [/V:etiket] [/Q]
FORMAT birim [/Q]

birim Sürücü harfi, takma noktası ya da birim adını
(sonunda iki nokta üst üste işaretiyle) belirtir.
/FS:dosyasistemi Dosya sistemi türünü belirtir (FAT, FAT32 ya da NTFS).
/V:etiket Birim etiketini belirtir.
/Q Hızlı biçimlendirme gerçekleştirir.
/C Yalnızca NTFS: Varsayılan olarak yeni birimde oluşturulan dosy
alar
sıkıştırılır.
/X Gerekirse önce birimin çıkartılmasını zorlar. Birimin tüm
açık işleyicileri artık geçerliliğini yitirir.
/A:boyut Varsayılan ayırma birim boyutunu geçersiz kılar.
Varsayılan ayarlar genel kullanım için mutlaka önerilir.
NTFS desteği: 512, 1024, 2048, 4096, 8192, 16K, 32K, 64K.
FAT desteği: 512, 1024, 2048, 4096, 8192, 16K, 32K, 64K,
(128K, 256K kesim boyutu için > 512 bayt).
FAT32 desteği: 512, 1024, 2048, 4096, 8192, 16K, 32K, 64K,
(128K, 256K kesim boyutu için > 512 bayt).

FAT ile FAT32 dosya sistemlerinin aşağıdaki kısıtlamayı
bir birim üzerindeki küme sayısına getirdiğine dikkat edin:

FAT: Küme sayısı <= 65526
FAT32: 65526 < Küme sayısı < 4177918

Belirtilen küme boyutu kullanılarak yukarıdaki gerekliliğin
karşılanamadığını belirlediği anda biçimlendirme işlemi
anında durdurulur.

NTFS sıkıştırması, 4096 üzerindeki ayırma birim boyutu için
desteklenmez.

/F:boyut Biçimlendirilecek disket boyutunu belirtir (1.44)
/T:iz Her disk yüzü için iz sayısını belirtir.
/N:kesim İz başına kesim sayısını belirtir.

FTYPE Dosya uzantısı ilişkilendirmesinde kullanılan dosya türlerini

görüntüler ya da değiştirir.

FTYPE [fileType[=[openCommandString]]]

fileType İncelenecek ya da açılacak dosya türünü belirtir
openCommandString Bu türden dosyalar başlatıldığında kullanılacak açma
komutunu belirtir.

Açma komutu dizeleri tanımlı geçerli dosya türlerini görüntülemek için
parametresiz olarak FTYPE yazın. FTYPE tek bir dosya türüyle çağrılırsa,
bu dosya için geçerli açma komutu dizesi görüntülenir.
Açma komut dizesi için hiçbir şey belirtmezseniz, FTYPE komutu dosya türü için
açma komutu dizesini siler. Açma komut dizesi içinde, %0 ya da %1
ilişkilendirilme yoluyla başlatılan dosya adıyla değiştirilir.
%* tüm parametreleri alırken %2 birinci, %3 ikinci vb. parametreleri
alır. %~n, nth parametresiyle başlayan tüm kalan parametreleri alır;
bu durumda n, 2 ile 9 arası olabilir. Örneğin:

ASSOC .pl=PerlScript
FTYPE PerlScript=perl.exe %1 %*

aşağıdaki şekilde bir Perl toplu iş dosyasının çağrılmasını sağlar:

script.pl 1 2 3

Uzantıları yazma zorunluluğundan kurtulmak için aşağıdakini
uygulayın:

set PATHEXT=.pl;%PATHEXT%

böylece toplu iş dosyası aşağıdaki şekilde çağrılabilir:

script 1 2 3

GOTO Bir toplu iş dosyasında, Windows komut yorumlayıcısını etiketli bir

satıra yöneltir.

GOTO label

label Bir toplu iş dosyası programındaki etiket olarak kullanılan bir
metin dizesini belirtir.

İki nokta üst üste işaretiyle başlayarak satıra bir etiket girin.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, GOTO aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

GOTO komutu artık :EOF hedef etiketini kabul eder; bu, denetimi
geçerli toplu iş dosyasının sonuna aktarır. Bu, bir etiket
tanımlamadan bir toplu iş dosyasından çıkmanın kolay yoludur.
Bu özelliği kullanışlı hale getiren CALL komutu uzantı
tanımı için CALL /? yazın.

GRAFTABL Grafik modunda, Windows\'un dile özgü karakterleri görüntülemesini sağlar.

GRAFTABL [xxx]
GRAFTABL /STATUS

xxx Bir kod sayfası numarası belirtir.
/STATUS GRAFTABL ile kullanılıcak geçerli kod sayfasını görüntüler.

IF Bir toplu iş dosyasındaki koşullu işlemleri uygular.

IF ERRORLEVEL sayı komutu
IF [NOT] dize1==dize2 komut
IF [NOT] EXIST dosyaadı komut

NOT Yalnızca koşul yanlışsa, Windows XP\'nin
komutu yürütmesini belirtir.

ERRORLEVEL sayı Son çalıştırılan program, belirtilen sayıya eşit ya da
büyük bir çıkış kodu getirdiyse doğru bir koşul belirtir.

dize1==dize2 Belirtilen metin dizeleri eşleşirse doğru bir koşul
belirtir.

EXIST dosyaadı Belirtilen dosyaadı varsa doğru bir koşul
belirtir.

komut Koşul yerine getirildiğinde yürütülecek komutu
belirtir. Komutun ardından ELSE komut gelebilir;
bu durumda, belirtilen koşul FALSE ise, ELSE anahtar
sözcüğü ardındaki komut yürütülür

ELSE koşulu, IF ardından aynı satırda oluşmalıdır. Örnek olarak:

IF EXIST dosyaadı. (
del dosyaadı.
) ELSE (
echo dosyaadı. yok.
)

Del komutu yenisatır ile sonlandırılması gerektiğinden, aşağıdaki
çalışmayabilir:

IF EXIST dosyaadı. del dosyaadı. ELSE echo dosyaadı. yok

ELSE komutunun IF ardından aynı satırda oluşması gerekliliği yüzünden
aşağıdaki de çalışmayabilir:

IF EXIST dosyaadı. del dosyaadı.
ELSE echo dosyaadı. yok

Hepsini tek satırda isterseniz, aşağıdaki çalışabilir:

IF EXIST dosyaadı. (del dosyaadı.) ELSE echo dosyaadı. yok

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, IF aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

IF [/i] string1 compare-op string2 command
IF CMDEXTVERSION number command
IF DEFINED variable command

karışalştırma işleçleri aşağıdakilerden biri olabilir:

EQU - eşittir
NEQ - eşit değildir
LSS - küçüktür
LEQ - küçüktür ya da eşittir
GTR - büyüktür
GEQ - süyüktür ya da eşittir

ayrıca, /I anahtarı, belirtildiğinde, büyük/küçük harf duyarsız dize
karşılaştırmaları yapmasını bildirir. /I anahtarı, IF\'in string1==string2
biçiminde de kullanılabilir. Bu karşılaştırmalar, string1 ile string2
tamamen nümerik hanelerden oluşuyorsa, dizeler sayıya dönüştürülüp
nümerik karşılaştırma yapılacak şekilde soysaldır.

CMDEXTVERSION koşulu yalnızca ERRORLEVEL gibi işler; tek özel durumu,
Komut Uzantılarıyla ilişkilendirilmiş bir dahili iç sürüm numarasıyla
karşılaştırılır. İlk sürüm 1\'dir. Komut Uzantılarına önemli gelişme
eklendiğinde, bir artırılır.
Komut Uzantıları devre dışıysa, CMDEXTVERSION koşulu hiçbir zaman doğru
olmaz.

DEFINED koşulu, EXISTS gibi çalışır; tek farkı çevre değişkeni adı alıp çevre
değişkeni tanımlıysa doğru
döndürmesidir.

ERRORLEVEL adında bir çevre değişkeni zaten olmadığı sürece,
%ERRORLEVEL% geçerli ERRORLEVEL değerinin dize temsilcisine genişletilir.
Bu durumda, yerine kendi değerini alır.
Bir program çalıştırdıktan sonra, ERRORLEVEL kullanımı aşağıdaki şekilde
gösterilir:

goto answer%ERRORLEVEL%
:answer0
echo Program had return code 0
:answer1
echo Program had return code 1

Yukarıdaki nümerik karşılaştırmaları yaparak aşağıdakini de yapabilirsiniz:

IF %ERRORLEVEL% LEQ 1 goto okay

CMD.EXE tarafından gerçekleştirilen işlem öncesinde CMD.EXE\'ye gönderilen
özgün komut satırına %CMDCMDLINE% genişletilir; bunun için CMDCMDLINE
adında bir çevre değişkeni olmaması gerekir. Bu durumda,
yerine kendi değerini alır.

CMDEXTVERSION adında bir çevre değişkeni zaten olmadığı sürece,
%CMDEXTVERSION% geçerli CMDEXTVERSION değerinin dize temsilcisine
genişletilir. Bu durumda, yerine kendi değerini alır.

LABEL Bir diskin birim etiketini oluşturur, değiştirir ya da siler.

LABEL [sürücü:][etiket]
LABEL [/MP] [birim] [etiket]

sürücü: Bir sürücünün sürücü adını belirtir.
etiket Birimin etiketini belirtir.
/MP Birimin takma noktası ya da birim adı olarak
görülmesini belirtir.
birim Sürücü adı, takma noktası ya da birim adını
(iki nokta üst üste işaretiyle) belirler.
Birim adı belirtildiyse, /MP bayrağına gerek yoktur.

MD Bir dizin oluşturur.

MKDIR [sürücü:]yol
MD [sürücü:]yol

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, MKDIR aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

MKDIR, gerekirse, ara dizinleri yolda oluşturur.
Örneğin; \a yoksa o zaman, uzantılar devre dışı olduğunda yazacağınız:

mkdir \a
chdir \a
mkdir b
chdir b
mkdir c
chdir c
mkdir

ile

mkdir \a\b\c\d

aynıdır.

MKDIR Bir dizin oluşturur.

MKDIR [sürücü:]yol
MD [sürücü:]yol

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, MKDIR aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

MKDIR, gerekirse, ara dizinleri yolda oluşturur.
Örneğin; \a yoksa o zaman, uzantılar devre dışı olduğunda yazacağınız:

mkdir \a
chdir \a
mkdir b
chdir b
mkdir c
chdir c
mkdir

ile

mkdir \a\b\c\d

aynıdır.

MODE Bir sistem aygıtını yapılandırır.

Seri bağlantı
noktası: MODE COMm[:] [BAUD=b] [DATA=d] [STOP=s]
[to=on|off] [xon=on|off] [odsr=on|off]
[octs=on|off] [dtr=on|off|hs]
[idsr=on|off]

Aygıt Durumu: MODE [device] [/STATUS]

Yazdırma yeniden
yönlendirme: MODE LPTn[:]=COMm[:]

Kod sayfası seçimi: MODE CON[:] CP SELECT=yyy

Kod sayfası durumu: MODE CON[:] CP [/STATUS]

Görüntü modu: MODE CON[:] [LINES=n]

Yazma oranı: MODE CON[:]

MORE Çıktıyı bir defada ekranda görüntüler.

MORE [/E [/Tn] [+n]] < [yol]dosyaadı
command-name | MORE [/E [/P] [/Tn] [+n]]
MORE /E [/C] [/P] [/Tn] [+n] [files]

[yol]dosyaadı Her defasında tek pencerede görüntülemek için
dosya belirtir.

command-name Çıktısı görüntülenecek bir
komut belirtir.

/E Uzatılmış özellikleri etkinleştir
/C Sayfa görüntülemeden önce pencereyi temizle
/P FormFeed karakterleri genişlet
/S Çoklu boş satırları tek satıra sıkıştır
/Tn Sekmeleri n boşluğa genişlet (varsayılan 8)

Anahtarlar MORE çevre değişkeninde
olabilir.

+n İlk dosyayı n satırında görüntülemeye başla

files Görüntülenecek dosyaların listesi. Listedeki dosyalar
boşlukla birbirinden ayrılır.

Uzatılmış özellikler etkinse, --More-- komut isteminde
aşağıdaki komutlar kabul edilir:

P n Sonraki n satırları görüntüle
S n Sonraki n satırları atla
F Sonraki dosyayı görüntüle
Q Çık
= Satır numarasını göster
? Yardım satırını göster
<space> Sonraki sayfayı görüntüle
<ret> Sonraki satırı görüntüle

MOVE Bir ya da birden çok dosyayı bir dizinden diğerine taşır.

Bir ya da birden çok dosya taşımak için:
MOVE [/Y | /-Y] [sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı1[,...] hedef

Bir dizini yeniden adlandırmak için:
MOVE [/Y | /-Y] [sürücü:][yol]dizinadı1 dizinadı2

[sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı1 Taşımak istediğiniz dosya ya da konumun
adını belirtir.
hedef Dosyanın yeni konumunu belirtir. Hedef,
sürücü adı ile iki nokta üst üste işaretinden;
dizin adı ya da birleşimden oluşabilir.
Yalnızca tek bir dosya taşıyorsanız, taşıma
sırasında dosya adını değiştirmek istiyorsanız,
dosyaadı da ekleyebilirsiniz.
[sürücü:][yol]dizinadı1 Yeniden adlandırmak istediğiniz dizini belirtir.
dizinadı2 Dizinin yeni adını belirtir.

/Y Var olan bir hedef dosyasının üzerine yazma
onayını sormayı engeller.
/-Y Var olan bir hedef dosyasının üzerine yazma
onayının sorulmasını sağlar.

/Y anahtarı, COPYCMD çevre değişkeninde bulunabilir.
Bu, komut satırında /-Y ile geçersiz duruma getirilebilir. Varsayılan,
MOVE komutu bir toplu iş dosyası içinden yürütülmediği sürece
üzerine yazmaların onaylanmasını istemektir.

PATH Çalıştırılabilir dosyalar için bir arama yolu görüntüler ya da ayarlar.

PATH [[sürücü:]yol[;...][;%PATH%]
PATH ;

PATH yazıp tüm arama yolu ayarlarını silip cmd.exe\'nin yalnızca
geçerli dizinde arama yapmasını sağlayın.
Parametresiz PATH yazıp geçerli yolu görüntüleyin.
Yeni yol ayarına %PATH% dahil edilmesi, eski yol ayarının yeni ayar
eklenmesine neden olur.

PAUSE Bir toplu iş dosyasının işlemesini askıya alıp ileti görüntüler.
Bir toplu iş programının çalışmasını askıya alır ve şu iletiyi gösterir:
"Devam etmek için bir tuşa basın...."

POPD Geçerli dizinin PUSHD tarafından kaydedilen eski değerini geri yükler.
PUSHD komutunca depolanan dizine değiştirir.

POPD


Komut Uzantıları etkinse, POPD komutu, PUSHD
ile oluşturulmuş bir sürücü harfini, bu sürücüyü itelenen dizin yığının ötesine
POPD ettiğinizde siler.

PRINT Bir metin dosyasını yazdırır.

PRINT [/D:aygıt] [[sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı[...]]

/D:aygıt Yazdırma aygıtı belirtir.

PROMPT Windows komut istemini değiştirir.

PROMPT [metin]

metin Yeni bir komut istemi belirtir.

İstem, normal karakterler ve aşağıdaki özel kodlardan oluşabilir:

$A & (Ampersand)
$B | (boru)
$C ( (Sol ayraç)
$D Geçerli tarih
$E Esc kodu (ASCII kodu 27)
$F ) (Sağ ayraç)
$G > (büyüktür işareti)
$H Backspace (önceki karakteri siler)
$L < (küçüktür işareti)
$N Geçerli sürücü
$P Geçerli sürücü ve yol
$Q = (eşittir işareti)
$S (boşluk)
$T Geçerli saat
$V Windows XP sürüm numarası
$_ Carriage return and linefeed
$$ $ (dolar işareti)

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, PROMPT komutu aşağıdaki
ek biçimlendirme karakterlerini destekler:

$+ PUSHD dizin yığını derinliğine bağlı olarak sıfır ya da daha çok
artı (+) işareti karakterleri; her düzey için bir karakter
itelenir.

$M Geçerli sürücü harfiyle ya da sürücü ağ sürücüsü değilse
boş dizeyle ilişkilendirilen uzak adı görüntüler.

PUSHD Geçerli dizini kaydedip değiştirir.

PUSHD [yol | ..]

yol Geçerli dizin durumuna getirilecek dizini belirtir.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, PUSHD komutu olağan sürücü harfi ve
yolu yanında ağ yollarını da kabul eder. Bir ağ yolu
belirtildiyse, PUSHD belirtilen bu ağ kaynağını işaret
eden geçici bir sürücü harfi oluşturup yeni tanımlanan
sürücü harfiyle geçerli sürücü ve dizini değiştirir. Geçici
sürücü harfleri bulunan ilk kullanılmayan harf kullanılarak
Z: ile başlayıp aşağıya doğru ayrılır.

RD Dizin kaldırır. (siler).

RMDIR [/Q] yol
RD [/Q] yol

/S Belirtilen dizindeki tüm dosyaları, dizinin kendisiyle
birlikte siler. Bir dizin ağacını kaldırmak
için kullanılır.

/Q Sessiz modu; /S ile bir dizin ağacı silinebiliyorsa sorma

RECOVER Bozuk ya da hasarlı bir diskten okunabilir bilgiyi kurtarır.


C:\********s and Settings\halil>HELP RECOVER
Kötü ya da hasarlı bir diskten okunabilir bilgiyi kurtarır.

RECOVER [sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı

REM Toplu iş dosyalarındaki ya da CONFIG.SYS açıklamalarını (yorum) okur.
Bir toplu iş dosyasına veya CONFIG.SYS içine açıklamalar kaydeder.

REM

REN Dosyaları yeniden adlandırır.

RENAME [sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı1 dosyaadı2.
REN [sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı1 dosyaadı2.

Hedef dosyanız için yeni bir sürücü ya da yol belirtemediğinizi unutmayın.

RENAME Dosyaları yeniden adlandırır.

RENAME [sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı1 dosyaadı2.
REN [sürücü:][yol]dosyaadı1 dosyaadı2.

Hedef dosyanız için yeni bir sürücü ya da yol belirtemediğinizi unutmayın.

REPLACE Dosyaları yenisiyle değiştirir.

REPLACE [sürücü1:][yol1]dosyaadı [sürücü2:][yol2] [/P] [/W]
REPLACE [sürücü1:][yol1]dosyaadı [sürücü2:][yol2] [/P] [/W] [/u]

[yol1]dosyaadı Kaynak dosya ya da dosyaları belirtir.
[sürücü2:][yol2] Yenisiyle değiştirilecek dosyaların dizinini
belirtir.
/A Hedef dizine yeni dosya ekler. /S ya da /U
anahtarlarıyla kullanılamaz.
/P Bir dosyayı yenisiyle değiştirirken ya da bir
kaynak dosya eklerken onayınızı ister.
/R Korunmayan dosyalar yanında salt okunur dosyaları
değiştirir.
/S Hedef dizinin tüm alt dizinlerindeki dosyaları
yenisiyle değiştirir. /A anahtarıyla
kullanılamaz.
/W Başlamadan önce sizin bir disk yerleştirmenizi
bekler.
/U Yalnızca kaynak dosyadan eski olan dosyaları
değiştirir (güncelleştirir). /A anahtarıyla
kullanılamaz.

RMDIR Dizini kaldırır.

RMDIR [/Q] yol
RD [/Q] [sürücü:]yol

/S Belirtilen dizindeki tüm dosyaları, dizinin kendisiyle
birlikte siler. Bir dizin ağacını kaldırmak
için kullanılır.

/Q Sessiz modu; /S ile bir dizin ağacı silinebiliyorsa sorma

SET Windows çevre değişkenlerini görüntüler, ayarlar ya da kaldırır.
cmd.exe çevre değişkenlerini görüntüler, ayarlar ya da kaldırır.

SET [değişken=[dize]]

değişken Çevre değişkeninin adını belirtir.
dize Değişkene atanacak olan karakter serisini belirtir.

Geçerli çevre değişkenlerini görüntülemek için parametresiz olarak SET yazın.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, SET aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

Hiçbir eşit işareti ya da değer olmadan yalnızca bir değişken adı
tarafından çağrılan SET komutu kendisine verilen adla eşleşen
öneke sahip tüm değişkenlerin değerini görüntüler. Örneğin:

SET P

\'P\' harfiyle başlayan tüm değişkenleri görüntüleyebilir

Geçerli çevrede değişken adı bulunamıyorsa, SET komutu
ERRORLEVEL\'i 1\'e ayarlar.

SET komutu, eşit işaretinin bir değişken adının parçası olmasına olanak
vermez.

SET komutunu iki yeni anahtar eklendi:

SET /A expression
SET /P variable=[promptString]

/A anahtarı eşit işaretinin sağındaki dizenin
değerlendirilen bir numerik deyim olduğunu belirtir. Deyim değerlendiricisi
oldukça basit olup aşağıdaki işlemleri, azalan üstünlük sırasına
göre destekler:

() - gruplama
! ~ - - birli işleçler
* / % - aritmetik işleçler
+ - - aritmetik işleçler
<< >> - mantık değişimi
- bitwise and
^ - bitwise exclusive or
| - bitwise or
= *= /= %= += -= - assignment
&= ^= |= <<= >>=
, - ifade ayırıcı

Mantık ya da modül işleçlerinden birini kullanırsanız, deyim dizesini
tırnak işaretleri arasında ekine koymanız gerekir. Deyimdeki
nümerik olmayan dizeler, değerleri kullanılmadan önce sayıya
dönüştürülen çevre değişkenleri olarak kabul edilir. Bir çevre
değişkeni belirtildiği halde geçerli çevrede belirtilmezse, sıfır değeri
kullanılır. Bu sayede, çevre değişkeniyle değerlerini almak için
tüm % işaretlerini yazmaya gerek kalmadan aritmetik işlemleri
yapılabilir. Bir toplu iş dosyası dışından, SET /A komut satırından
yürütülürse, deyimin son değeri görüntülenir. Atama işleci, atama
işlecinin soluna bir çevre değişkeni adı gerektirir. Onaltılık sayılar
için 0x, sekizlik sayılar için 0 önekiyle kullanılmadığı sürece,
nümerik değerler ondalık sayıdır.
Böylece, 0x12, 18 ve 022 ile aynıdır. Sekizlik yazımın karmaşık olabileceğini
unutmayın: 8 ile 9 geçerli sekizlik hane olmadığından 08 ile 09 geçerli
sayı değildir.

/P anahtarı, bir değişken değerini kullanıcı tarafından girilen bir girdi
satırına ayarlamanızı sağlar. Girdi satırını okumadan önce, belirtilen
promptString görüntülenir. promptString boş olabilir.

Çevre değişkeni değiştirmesi aşağıdaki şekilde artırılmıştır:

%PATH:str1=str2%

genişletilen sonuçtaki her "str1" geçtiğinde "str2" ile değiştirerek,
PATH çevre değişkenini genişletir. Genişletilen çıktıdan "str1" geçen
yerlerin tümünü etkili şekilde silmek için "str2" boş bir dize olabilir.
"str1" bir joker karakteriyle başlayabilir; bu durumda, genişletilen
çıktının başlangıcından str1\'in kalan bölümündeki ilk geçtiği yere dek
her şeyle eşleşir.

Bir genişletme için alt dize de belirtebilir.

%PATH:~10,5%

PATH çevre değişkenini genişleterek, genişletilmiş olan sonucun
11. (ofset 10) karakterinde başlayan 5 karakteri
kullanır. Uzunluk belirtilmediyse, kalan değişken değere
varsayılan olarak ayarlanır. Her iki sayıdan biri (ofset ya da uzunluk)
eksi ise, çevre değişkeni uzunluğunda kullanılan değer ofsete ya da
belirtilen uzunluğa eklenir.

%PATH:~-10%

PATH değişkeninin son 10 karakterini çıkarır.

%PATH:~0,-2%

PATH değişkeninin yalnızca son 2 karakterini çıkarır.

Sonunda, geciken çevre değişkeni genişletmesi desteği
eklendi. Bu destek varsayılan olarak her zaman devre dışıdır; ancak
CMD.EXE\'ye /V komut satırı anahtarıyla etkinleştirilebilir/devre dışı
bırakılabilir . Bkz. CMD /?

Geciken çevre değişkeni genişletmesi, bir metnin satırı yürütülmek yerine
okunduğunda oluşan geçerli genişletme sınırlamalarının üstesinden gelir.
Aşağıdaki örnek, yakındaki değişken genişlemesiyle olan
sorunu göstermektedir:

set VAR=before
if "%VAR%" == "before" (
set VAR=after
if "%VAR%" == "after" @echo Bunu görürseniz işe yaramıştır
)

iletiyi asla görüntülemez; her iki IF tümcesindeki %VAR%
ilk IF tümcesi okunduğunda değiştirildiğinden, mantık olarak
bileşik tümce olan IF gövdesini içerir. Böylece
bileşik tümce içindeki IF, gerçekten hiçbir zaman eşit olmayacak olan
"before" ile "after" öğesini karşılaştırır. Aynı şekilde, aşağıdaki
örnek de beklendiği gibi çalışmaz:

set LIST=
for %i in (*) do set LIST=%LIST% %i
echo %LIST%

burada, geçerli dizinde dosya listesi oluşturmak yerine,
bulunan en son dosyaya LIST değişkenini ayarlar.
Yine, bunun nedeni, %LIST% öğesinin FOR tümcesi okunduğunda
genişletilmesi ve o sırada LIST değişkeninin boş olmasıdır.
Bu durumda, yürüttüğümüz gerçek FOR döngüsü şudur:

for %i in (*) do set LIST= %i

bu yalnızca bulunan son dosyaya LIST ayarını belirler.

Geciken çevre değişkeni genişletmesi, yürütme anında çevre
değişkenlerini genişletmeniz için farklı karakter (ünlem işareti)
kullanmanıza olanak sağlar. Geciken değişken genişletmesi etkinse,
yukarıdaki örnekler çalışması için aşağıdaki şekilde yazılabilir:

set VAR=before
if "%VAR%" == "before" (
set VAR=after
if "!VAR!" == "after" @echo Bunu görürseniz işe yaramıştır
)

set LIST=
for %i in (*) do set LIST=!LIST! %i
echo %LIST%

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, genişletilebildiği halde SET ile birkaç
görüntülenen değişkenlerle görünmeyen
dinamik çevre değişkeni vardır. Bu değişken değerleri
değişken değerinin genişletildiği her defada dinamik olarak hesaplanır.
Kullanıcı açıkça bu adlarla bir değişken tanımlarsa,
söz konusu tanım aşağıda tanımlanan dinamik olanı etkisiz kılar:

%CD% - geçerli dizin dizesine genişletir.

%DATE% - DATE komutuyla aynı biçimi kullanarak geçerli tarihe genişletir.

%TIME% - TIME komutuyla aynı biçimi kullanarak geçerli saate genişletir.

%RANDOM% - 0 ile 32767 arası herhangi bir ondalık sayıya genişletir.

%ERRORLEVEL% - Geçerli ERRORLEVEL değerine genişletir

%CMDEXTVERSION% - Geçerli Komut İşlemci Uzantıları sürüm numarasına
genişletir.

%CMDCMDLINE% - Komut İşlemcisi\'ni çağıran özgün
komut satırına genişletir.

SETLOCAL Toplu iş dosyasındaki çevre değişikliklerinin yerelleştirmesine başlar.

SETLOCAL sonrası kaydedilmiş yapılan çevre değişiklikleri toplu iş dosyası
yerelindedir. Önceki ayarları geri yüklemek için ENDLOCAL kaydedilmelidir.
Bir komut dosyasının sonuna erişildiğinde, bu toplu iş dosyasınca kaydedilen
ENDLOCAL komutları bir SETLOCAL yürütülür.

SETLOCAL

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, SETLOCAL aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

SETLOCAL toplu iş dosyası komutu artık seçeneğe bağlı parametreleri
kabul ediyor:
ENABLEEXTENSIONS / DISABLEEXTENSIONS
komut işlemci uzantılarını etkinleştirin ya da devre dışı
bırakın. Ayrıntı için bkz. CMD /?.
ENABLEDELAYEDEXPANSION / DISABLEDELAYEDEXPANSION
geciken çevre değişkeni genişlemesini etkinleştirin ya da
devre dışı bırakın. Ayrıntı için bkz. SET /?.
Bu değiştirmeler, komutu,
SETLOCAL komutu öncesindeki ayarına bakmaksızın eşleşen en son ENDLOCAL
komutuna dek sürer.

SETLOCAL komutu, ERRORLEVEL değerini, bir parametre verildiyse
ayarlar. Geçerli iki parametreden biri verili diğeri verilmediyse
sonuç sıfır olur. Bunu, toplu iş dosyaları içinde
aşağıdaki tekniği kullanan uzantıların hazır olup olmadığına
karar vermek için kullanabilirsiniz:

VERIFY OTHER 2>nul
SETLOCAL ENABLEEXTENSIONS
IF ERRORLEVEL 1 echo uzantılar etkinleştirilemiyor

Bunun çalışma nedeni, CMD.EXE, SETLOCAL eski sürümünün
ERRORLEVEL değerini ayarlamamasıdır. Kötü parametreli VERIFY komutu
ERRORLEVEL değerini sıfır olmayan bir değere başlatır.

SHIFT Toplu iş dosyasındaki değiştirilebilir parametre konumunu değiştirir.

SHIFT

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, SHIFT komutu, /n anahtarını destekler. Bu anahtar,
komuta n. yordamda değiştirmeye başlamasını bildirir; bu durumda n,
sıfır ile sekiz olabilir. Örneğin:

SHIFT /2

%3 öğesini %2 öğesine, %4 öğesini %3 öğesine vb. değiştirip
%0 ile %1 öğelerine etkilenmeden bırakabilir.

SORT Girdiyi sıralar.


SORT [/R] [/+n] [/M kilobayt] [/L locale] [/REC recordbytes]
[[sürücü1:][yol1]dosyaadı1] [/T [sürücü2:][yol2]]
[/O [sürücü3:][yol3]dosyaadı3]
/+n Her karşılaştırmaya başlamak için
n karakter sayısını belirtir. /+3 her
karşılaştırmanın her satırda 3. karakterde
başlaması gerektiğini gösterir.
Satırlarda n\'den az karakter varsa, önceki
diğer satırlarla harmanlanır.
Varsayılan olarak, karşılaştırma her satırda
ilk karakterde başlar.
/L[OCALE] locale Sistemin varsayılan yerel ayarını
belirtilenle ezer. ""C"" yerel ayarı
en hızlı harmanlama sırasını verdiği gibi,
şu an için tek seçenektir. Sıralama
her zaman büyük/küçük harf duyarlıdır.
/M[EMORY] kilobayt Sıralama için kullanılacak ana bellek miktarını
kilobayt olarak belirtir. Bellek boyutu
her zaman en az 160 kilobayt olacak şekilde
sınırlanır. Bellek boyutu belirtilirse,
hazırdaki ana bellek miktarına
bakılmazsınız, yaklaşık miktar
kullanılır.

En iyi performans, genellikle
bellek boyutu belirtilmeden elde edilir.
Varsayılan olarak, varsayılan en çok bellek
boyutuna uyarsa, (geçici dosya olmadan)
sıralama bir geçişte yapılır; yoksa, sıralama
(geçici dosyada bir kısmı sıralanmış veriyle)
iki geçişte yapılır. Bu şekilde, sıralama ve
birleştirme geçişleri için kullanılan bellek
boyutları aynı olur. Varsayılan en çok bellek
boyutu, girdi ve çıktıların ikisi de dosyaysa,
hazırdaki ana belleğin %90\'ı, yoksa
ana belleğin %45\'idir.
/REC[ORD_MAXIMUM] characters Bir kayıttaki en çok karakter sayısını
belirtir (varsayılan 4096, en çok 65535).
/R[EVERSE] Sıralama düzenini tersine çevirir; yani,
Z\'de A\'ya ardından 9\'dan 0\'a sıralar.
[drive1:][path1]filename1 Sıralanacak dosyayı beli


Z\'de A\'ya ardından 9\'dan 0\'a sıralar.
[drive1:][path1]filename1 Sıralanacak dosyayı belirtir. Belirtilmezse
standart giriş sıralanır.
Giriş dosyasını belirtmek aynı dosyayı standart
giriş olarak yeniden yönlendirmekten
daha hızlıdır.
/T[EMPORARY]
[drive2:][path2] Verinin ana belleğe sığmadığı durumda,
sıralamanın çalışan depolama alanını
tutan dizin yolunu belirtir. Varsayılan,
sistem geçici dizinini kullanmaktır.
/O[UTPUT]
[drive3:][path3]filename3 Sıralanan girişin depolanacağı dosyayı belirtir.
Belirtilmezse, veri standart çıktıya yazılır.
Çıktı dosyasını belirtmek, aynı dosyaya
standart çıktıyı yeniden yönlendirmekten
daha hızlıdır.

START Belirli program ya da komutu çalıştırmak için ayrı bir pencere açar.

START ["başlık"] [/Dpath] [/i] [/MIN] [/MAX] [/SEPARATE | /SHARED]
[/LOW | /NORMAL | /HIGH | /REALTIME | /ABOVENORMAL | /BELOWNORMAL]
[/WAIT]
[komut/program]
[parametre]

"başlık" Pencere başlık çubuğunda görüntülenecek olan başlık.
path Başlangıç dizini
B Uygulamayı yeni bir pencere oluşturmadan başlat. Söz
konusu uygulama, ^C işlemini göz ardı eder. Uygulama,
^C işlemini etkinleştirmezse, araya girmek için tek yol
^Break işlemidir
I Yeni çevre, geçerli çevre değil,
cmd.exe\'ye gönderilen özgün çevre olur.
MIN Pencereyi simge halinde başlat
MAX Pencereyi ekranı kaplayacak şekilde başlat
SEPARATE 16-bit Windows programı, ayrı bellek alanında başlat
SHARED 16-bit Windows programı paylaşılan bellek alanında başlat
LOW Uygulamayı, IDLE öncelik sınıfında başlat
NORMAL Uygulamayı, NORMAL öncelik sınıfında başlat
HIGH Uygulamayı, HIGH öncelik sınıfında başlat
REALTIME Uygulamayı, REALTIME öncelik sınıfında başlat
ABOVENORMAL Uygulamayı, ABOVENORMAL öncelik sınıfında başlat
BELOWNORMAL Uygulamayı, BELOWNORMAL öncelik sınıfında başlat
WAIT Uygulamayı başlatıp komut/uygulamayı sonlandırmasını bekle
Dahili bir cmd komutu ya da bir toplu iş dosyasıysa,
komut işlemcisi /K anahtarıyla cmd.exe\'de çalıştırılır.
Böylece, komut yürütüldükten sonra da pencere
açık kalır.

Dahili bir cmd komutu ya da bir toplu iş dosyası değilse,
program olduğundan, pencereli bir uygulama olarak
ya da konsol uygulaması olarak yürütülür.

parametre Komut/programa gönderilen parametreler


Komut Uzantıları etkinse, komut satırı ya da START komutuyla dış komut
çağırması aşağıdaki şekilde değişir:

çalıştırılamaz dosyalar, dosya ilişkilendirilmeleriyle yalnızca
dosya adı komut olarak yazılarak çağrılabilir. (örneğin: WORD.DOC
yazıldığında .DOC dosya uzantısıyla ilişkilendirilmiş uygulama
başlatılır). Bir toplu iş dosyasından, bu ilişkilendirmeleri
oluşturmak için ASSOC ile FTYPE komutlarını inceleyin.

32-bit GUI uygulaması olan bir uygulamayı çalıştırdığınızda, CMD.EXE
komut satırına dönmek için uygulamanın sonlanmasını beklemez.
Bu yeni hareket, bir toplu iş dosyası içinden çalıştırıldığında
görülmez.

İlk jetonu uzantısız ya da niteleyicisiz "CMD" dizesi olan
bir komut satırı çalıştırıldığında, "CMD", COMSPEC
değişkeninin değeriyle değiştirilir. Bu işlem, CMD.EXE\'nin
geçerli dizinden almasını önler.

İlk jetonu uzantı içermeyen bir komut satırı çalıştırıldığında,
CMD.EXE, aranacak uzantılara ve sırasına karar vermek için PATHEXT
ortam değişkeninin
değer yolunu kullanır. PATHEXT değişkeninin varsayılan değeri
şudur:

.COM;.EXE;.BAT;.CMD

Sözdiziminin PATH değişkeniyle aynı olduğuna dikkat edin;
farklı öğeler noktalı virgülle ayrılır.

Bir çalıştırılabilir arandığında, herhangi bir uzantıya hiçbir eşleme
olmazsa, adın bir dizin adıyla eşleşip eşleşmediğine bakar. Eşleşirse,
START komutu Gezgini bu yolda çalıştırır. Komut satırından yapıldığında,
bu yola CD /D komutu uygulamaya denktir.

SUBST Bir yolu bir sürücü harfiyle ilişkilendirir.
Bir sürücü harfiyle bir yolu birleştirir.

SUBST [sürücü1: [sürücü2:]yol]
SUBST sürücü1: /D

sürücü1: Bir yol atamak istediğiniz bir sanal sürücü belirtir.
[sürücü2:]yol Bir sanal sürücüye atamak istediğiniz fiziksel bir sürücü
ve yolu belirtir.
/D Değiştirilen (sanal) bir sürücüyü siler.

Geçerli sanal sürücülerin listesini görüntülemek için parametresiz
SUBST yazın.

TIME Sistem saatini görüntüler ya da ayarlar.

TIME [/T | time]

Geçerli saat ayarlarını göstermek ve yeni bir ayar istemi için
parametre olmadan TIME yazın. Aynı saati tutmak için ENTER\'a basın.

Komut Uzantıları etkinse, TIME komutu,
komuta yeni bir tarih sormadan yalnızca geçerli saati göstermesini
bildiren /T anahtarını destekler.

TITLE CMD.EXE oturumu için pencere başlığını belirler.

TITLE [dize]

dize Komut istemi penceresi başlığını belirler.

TREE Bir sürücü ya da yolun resimsel dizin yapısını görüntüler.
Sürücü ya da yolun klasör yapısını resimli olarak görüntüler.

TREE [sürücü:][yol] [/F] [/A]

/F Her klasördeki dosya adlarını görüntüler.
/A Genişletilmiş karakterler yerine ASCII kullanır.

TYPE Bir metin dosyasının içeriğini görüntüler.

TYPE [sürücü:][yol]dosya adı

VER Windows sürümünü görüntüler.

VERIFY Windows\'a, dosyalarınızın diske doğru yazıldığını doğrulayıp

doğrulamamasını bildirir.

VERIFY [ON | OFF]

Geçerli VERIFY ayarlarını göstermek için parametre olmadan VERIFY yazın.

VOL Disk birim etiketi ve seri numarasını görüntüler.(VARSA)

VOL [sürücü:]

XCOPY Dosya ve dizin ağaçlarını kopyalar.[/b]

not: alıntı
kaynak:
http://www.turkhackteam.org/bilgisay...ti-347519.html

EMEĞE TEŞEKÜRLER... Ediniz
Kullanıcı İmzası
Konu malea tarafından (26-02-2010 10:32 Saat 10:32 ) değiştirilmiştir.

29-01-2010 23:06
#2
cyborg06 - ait Kullanıcı Resmi (Avatar)
Forumdan Uzaklaştırıldı
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8
Konular:
21
Ticaret:
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kardeşim sen bunların hepsini biliyormusun :d
29-01-2010 23:11
#3
haven - ait Kullanıcı Resmi (Avatar)
Forumdan Uzaklaştırıldı
Üyelik tarihi:
07/2009
Nereden:
нєяуєя∂єη!
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alıntımı yoksa kendi yapımın mı?
30-01-2010 09:06
#4
turqud - ait Kullanıcı Resmi (Avatar)
Üye
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09/2008
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bunlar pis olmaz
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Full text of "The Hungarian castle"
a I B R. A K Y

OF THE
UNIVERSITY
or ILLINOIS



8Z3



THE



HUNGARIAN CASTLE.



BY

MISS PARDOE,

ATTHOR CF •¦ THE CITY CF TH3 STLTAN," ic ic. ic



IN THREE VOLS.
VOL. H.



LONDON:
T. & W. BOONE, 29, NEW BOND STREET,

M DCCC XLII.



LONDON:

Printed by W. Clowes and Son%

14, Charing Cross.



8S2>



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.



CHAPTER I.

On the following morning a bright change had
come over the face of nature. A rapid thaw had
commenced : and when the fair hands of the ladies
drew aside the heavy silken curtains of their beds
and casements, they were compelled to turn their
eyes from the dazzling glare of the snow over
which the sunlight had flung a mantle of glorv.
The stalactites that had fringed the window-sills
were dropping away in tears; and the monotonous
splashing of the large drops upon the half-frozen
surface beneath, was more welcome to many of the
young ears upon which it fell than any music in
the world, save indeed we except the waltzes of
Strauss and Lanner ; for it told of coming eman-

VOL. II. B



2 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

cipation, and brought vivid fancies of Vienna and
its gaieties pleasantly before them; and as they
stood and watched the large flakes of snow falling
from the pine trees, and saw the dark branches
rebound as the weight was removed, they seemed
to be emblems of their own hearts.

All was clamour and congratulation when the
party met at breakfast. Arrangements were made
for the road; and those whose travelling prepa-
rations were the most luxurious, were proffering
seats and furs to their less well-appointed friends ;
while at the conclusion of the meal little knots
were formed to discuss future proceedings, and
many a gallant cavalier's hopes and prospects
turned upon the decisions of that important half
hour.

Youth is very sanguine — and who could wish it
otherwise? Doubt, suspense, and misgiving are
the handmaidens of maturity: the age of hope
rejects such fellowship. The wish is scarcely
breathed ere its fulfilment is anticipated, and so it
was in the present instance. It was a glorious
thaw ! and in honour of its advent, many a hoarded
piece of gold was trusted to the hazard of the die



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 6

that day, which would have been divided and sub-
divided from sheer prudence, and to protract the
enjoyment of its risk, had the frost still continued ;
many a meerschaum was smoked beside the open
crate in the cold air, which would have been
emptied in a warm nook or inhaled in the stable,
had the prospect been less cheering; while among
the ladies, some even went so far as to consign their
embroidery frames to the hands of their maids, in
order that they might be carefully packed ready for
transport to the capital. Servants, ordered and
counter-ordered, almost in the same breath, were
hurrying about in every direction; the yelping of
the hounds who scented the change of atmosphere,
rang out on the clear air; snatches of song and
laughter came to the ear at intervals from every
side of the castle; and for the moment the party
who had met together to enjoy each other's society,
and many of whom had left no measure untried to
secure an invitation, appeared to be as anxious to
part as though dissension had sprung up amonw
them; so tenacious is human nature of everything
coercive, even when the restraint is merely the
temporary effect of the elements.

b2



4 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

The evening meal was gay and brilliant. The
trickling, splashing, and cracking of the yielding
ice filled up the intervals of the conversation ; nor
did even the blood -red tinge which pervaded the
whole of the spacious hall, when the setting sun
poured all the beams of its glory through the
high western window, produce one feeling of mis-
giving or anxiety as to the duration of the thaw
which had been welcomed with so much animation.

With joyous faces and merry laughter the circle
was at length formed about the ample hearth, and
preparations commenced for a renewal of the Tra-
ditions. The last evening ! Who were to be the
chroniclers of the last evening? They once more
appealed to chance, and the lot fell on the Baron
Pratnayer, one of the host's most cherished friends;
and as such, entitled also to a particular intro-
duction to the reader.

The Baron was a German; one of those half-
brilliant, and half-melancholy seeming individuals,
who speak comparatively seldom; but who never
utter a sentence which is not worthy of remem-
brance. In person he was rather above the middle
height, strongly and firmly moulded, with an



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. D

appearance of great muscular strength. His hair
and moustache were darker than is usual among
his countrymen ; and were in his case deepened
into greater manliness by a large and full blue
eye, so deep as at times to appear almost black ;
an effect enhanced by a peculiar habit which
he had acquired of dropping his upper eyelids
very low when looking attentively at any given
object. Without a shade of foppery, the nice
and careful arrangement of his costume, in which
the most beautiful cleanliness was combined with
the most unaffected simplicity, made him remark-
able in society; while the great and extensive
stores of his mind, poured out as it seemed, uncon-
sciously, and without either effort or assumption,
made his friendship as valuable as it was agreeable.
Without either personal vanity, literary pre-
tension, or any prejudices which might have pro-
duced a jariing discord in the well-ordered har-
mony of his mind, it was not wonderful that the
Baron Pratnayer was a welcome and an honoured
guest in every circle ; and the rather that when he
talked nonsense, as clever people only can talk it,
he never suffered his wit to wound, nor his fancy to
wrong his judgment ; and all who listened to him



6 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

felt at once that although he was a man whose
talent almost amounted to genius, his nature was as
simple as that of a child, and his heart as warm.

Such was the person towards whom all eyes
were turned on this eventful evening; and each was
aware that although not a Hungarian by birth^
there was no individual present who was more
conversant than himself with the history, the strug-
gles, and the chivalry of their country ; and many
a bright eye grew brighter during the momentary
silence which followed the drawing of the lots, as
the young Baron, without one attempt to evade the
task, instantly began to search his memory for an
appropriate legend.

He had not long to pause; a smile wreathed his
handsome lip for an instant, and then he said cour-
teously : '' The difficulty of my position is not to
find a tradition of Magyar gallantry, but to decide
on which I shall select ; for truly, to look back over
the history of Hungary for the last three centuries,
it would almost seem that she had been the prey of
foes without, and feud within, merely to afford to
her heroic sons an opportunity of proving the value
of their blood. I even fear that my election may
not be so judicious as I would fain make it ; for I



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 7

confess that so little did I anticipate being called
upon to become the chronicler of a country I so
much admire and reverence, that I have never
sought to renew my memories; but have rather
listened to the tales which have been told, without a
misgiving of my own possible co-operation; and
thus I seize one of the first which rise to my recol-
lection, satisfied with the conviction that I cannot
in any case fail to adduce some record of Hungarian
chivalry, and Hungarian patriotism."

" Our cause will be safe in your hands, I know.
Baron;" said the host, with a proud smile of
patriotism. " Had all your countrymen felt towards
the persecuted Magyars as you have ever done, Hun-
gary would have been rife with monuments of pre-
sent greatness, instead of records of past suffering."

The Baron bowed his thanks with one of his own
peculiarly sunny smiles; and then without further
preface, commenced his tale.

THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK.

The establishment of Turkish supremacy in
Hungary through the supineness of Zdpolya, cost
the country some of the noblest blood that she
could boast; and made the ruin and devastation



8 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

everywhere apparent only an extended picture of
what existed at every hearth. The adherents on
both sides were ahke the sufferers in this struggle,
and as Ferdinand or Zdpolya in turn prospered, the
adverse party were comparatively victimized ; and
meanwhile the Turks looked on from their proud
pinnacle of power, clutching at every advantage
which was missed by either of the contending fac-
tions, and profiting by every turn of the fearful
game.

This fact, which might fairly have been inferred
ere a blow was struck, was only discovered too late
by the hostile sovereigns ; for it was not until after
twenty years of suffering that a treaty was con-
cluded between Ferdinand, and Isabella (the widow
of Z^polya), by which Hungary and Transylvania
were ceded to the same crown.

Obstacles so great as to have at first appeared
insurmountable, had impeded the negociation in
every stage of its progress ; and it w^as only by the
most extraordinary caution that the secret of its
existence was concealed from the Turks, who would
at once have set it aside ; and the indignation of
Sultan Solyman was comparatively great when this
important transaction came to his knowledge only



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. \)

after the signing of the treaty, when he felt that
his own opposition had become powerless ; and that
he had not only never been consulted, but that he
was actually wronged by both parties, although
acknowledged as the guardian and protector of
John Sigismond.

- But his wrath reached its climax when he dis-
covered not only the cession of Transylvania, but
even of those portions of Hungary which had been
occupied in the name of the Queen ; the whole of
which were, according to the treaty, to revert to
Ferdinand ; and in great ire he swore that not only
would he become master of the whole of both coun-
tries, but that he would expel every German from
the land for ever.

Solyman was not wont to threaten and forget :
his deeds followed fast upon his resolves ; and on
this occasion active preparations were instantly com-
menced for the important campaign which he medi-
tated. The Grand Vesir Achmet was dispatched
with an army of one hundred thousand men, chiefly
Asiatics, to accomplish the total conquest of Hun-
gary, much of which was already in the possession
of the Crescent; and imperative orders were tor-

b3



10 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

warded to Ali Pasha who commanded at Buda,
and to the chiefs of the other Turkish fortresses, to
commence hostihties against the Christians, and to
pursue them even to the death.

News of these threatening measures soon reached
the ears of Ferdinand ; who, inferior in judgment to
Solyman, had surrounded himself by a crowd of gene-
rals, all of whom, if we except Nicholas Salm, were
inadequate to perform the duties required of them;
and in the fearful emergency of the moment he dis-
patched an army under Castaldo against the Grand
Vesir, where this general played his part so ill that
in the first engagement which ensued at Szegedin,
he lost five thousand men, was totally defeated,
and compelled to retreat. Satisfied with this essay,
he added cowardice to ill judgment ; abandoned the
cause to its fate ; and looked quietly on without
further interference, when Achmet drew up his forces
before Temesvar — next to Belgrade the most im-
portant fortress on the frontier — and while the despot
of Wallachia poured his troops into Transylvania.

The Count Stephen Lossontzi, a brave man, and
an able soldier, defended himself in the most deter-
mined and chivalrous manner; and by his gallant



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 11

resistance, compelled Achmet ultimately to summon
the Pasha of Buda to his assistance. The call was
obeyed, and a hundred and sixty thousand men were
speedily in arms against the devoted fortress — the im-
portance of its capture having compelled them to use
all available means to secure it ; but not until famine,
and a total exhaustion of ammunition, rendered all
further resistance impossible, did Lossontzi sur-
render, and permit the entrance of a Turkish gar-
rison into the castle which he had so pertinaciously
defended. Havingp established a sufficient force at
Temesvar to secure the safe possession of their
prize, the Moslem army next marched successively
on Lippa, Salgo, and Dregel; and all these for-
tresses were alike lost to the Christians, either by
the cowardice of their commanders, or by the over-
whelming strength of the enemy.

One solitary castle was left in the power of its
rightful masters throughout all the lower district of
the Theiss ; and that one, from whose battlements
the blood-red banner of the Infidel had never yet
floated, was the Castle of Szolnok — a place of
immense importance, alike from the superior nature
and great strength of its fortifications, and from the



12 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

fact that it contained a very considerable store of
ammunition, which had been deposited there for
security. It was confided to the government of Lo-
renzo Negary, the representative of an ancient family
which had been ennobled for their military prowess
by Geisa II. : and he was well worthy of the proud
name he bore, as well as of that which he had ac-
quired for himself, of " the Pillar of Christianity.' o

The garrison of Szolnok consisted of about seven
hundred and fifty men — a medley of Germans,
Spaniards, Italians, and native Hungarians — and
nature had been so well seconded by art in the
erection of the fortress, that it appeared almost im-
pregnable. It stood on the northern bank, at the
junction of the rivers Theiss and Zagyar ; and was
surrounded by a wide ditch and lofty walls, towering
above which were mighty bastions to protect the
minor buildings.

Twenty-four heavy field-pieces, two thousand five
hundred guns of different dimensions, upwards of
one thousand barrels of powder, great store of can-
non-balls, iron, lead, and other species of ammuni-
tion, together with provisions for a year, in case of
siege ; but above all, the tried and known valour of



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 13

its Commander, and his lieutenant Gabriel Pekry,
seemed to afford a sufficient guarantee for the safety
of the castle.

With an advanced guard of twenty thousand men,
Ali, then Pasha of Buda, sat down before Szolnok,
resolved to effect its conquest at any cost of time or
blood ; and having in vain summoned it to surren-
der, he at once commenced hostilities, and opened
a sharp fire against the fortress, which he continued
without intermission during eight days. He was
not, however, long in making the discovery that he
had no longer either a coward or a novice to contend
against ; for the manner in which the defence was
conducted, soon convinced him that unless he had
immediate reinforcements from the Vezir, he must
raise the siege ; and he was so fully imbued with this
conviction, and wrote so urgently when he demanded
aid, that the Vezir arrived in person at the head of
bis army, by forced marches, and was received with
loud acclamations, and with the firingr of cannon.

His troops poured on, battalion after battalion,
legion after legion, horse and foot, until they covered
a surface of five English miles ; and their motley
and picturesque appearance interested even the



14 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

besieged. There were the Janissaries with their
flaunting banner, their audacious bearing, and their
gleaming arms ; the Arabs, with their small fleet
coursers, and their long pliant lances; the body-
guard, with their plumed head-gear and jewelled
trappings ; and above and amid all, waved the
gilded standards and floating horse-tails of the
different Pashas. As the mighty mass gradually
disposed itself around the fortress, the gleaming of
the rapidly-raised tents added a new feature to the
scene ; and when the first burst of half barbarian
welcome partially subsided, such was the number of
the enemy, that the voices of the men, the trampling
of the horses, and the jingling of the small silver bells
upon their housings, were all audible in the castle ;
and there were not a few within its walls who were
inclined to compute the foe at ten times their already
enormous amount, and who began to feel that they
would fain escape the forthcoming struggle.

The Count Negary could not conceal from him-
self the mortifying truth ; and while his heart burnt
within him with indignation and disappointment,
he hastily assembled his garrison ; and after having
addressed to them words of encouragement and re-



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 15

proach, and reminded them that they were about
to contend not only for their lives and for their
honour, but also for their altars and their faith, he
knelt down in the midst of his troops, and drawing his
sword from its scabbard, took a solenm oath that
he never would surrender while he had life.

Aflfected by his noble self-devotion, and carried
away by the enthusiasm of the moment, all repeated
the oath after him ; and the generous Negary again
believed that he should save the cause of Christianity,
by checking the haughty insolence of the Moslems.
But the sun of the second day after the scene we
have just described had not yet set, when unequi-
vocal symptoms of mutiny manifested themselves
in the garrison ; and he learnt that the besieging
army had left no expedient unattempted to corrupt
his people ; the men had been tampered with on
all sides, and in all manners ; bribes and threats had
alike done their work, for they had been promised
magnificent rewards for treachery, and warned that
no vengeance would be held too deadly, should they
ultimately be taken after a prolonged resistance.

The fate of the garrison of Temesvar, which had
been cut to pieces after a long and brave struggle.



16 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

and its gallant leader Lossontzi barbarously flayed
alive, had made a strong and dangerous impression
on the troops of Ncgary ; and instead of exciting
them to revenge, had only crushed them into
cowardice.

As they canvassed the melancholy subject, they
gathered strength from their very weakness; and
while some, still willing to temporise with their
brave commander, talked of capitulating, others,
more selfish and more impatient, as well as more
dastardly, resolved on compelling him to vacate
the castle during the night, and thus provide for the
safety of the garrison, while he abandoned the for-
tress to its fate. All the Italians insisted on the
last measure; and, with their national impetuosity,
at once rushed into the presence of the Count, and
demanded its fulfilment.

Negary was occupied in writing a despatch to the
main army, and the trusty and secret messenger
who was about to risk his life in its delivery stood
before him, awaiting the closing of the packet and
the final thanks and orders of his general, when the
rebel troop forced themselves into his presence. He
at once understood their errand ; and a smile of



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 17

withering contempt sat on his lip, as he rebuked
them for their unmannerly intrusion, and bade them
withdraw, and endeavour to forget that they had
been about to stigmatize themselves as cowards.
But he spoke in vain : pride, honour, obedience, all
ahke had failed under their dastard fear ; the bond of
discipUne was rent asunder, and amid a storm of
words, and a tumult of passion, they imperiously
insisted upon leaving that very night, a fortress, of
which they declared that, in order to pamper his
own pride, he sought to make a human shambles ;
and in conclusion, they bade him lead them to the
camp of Castaldo, whose superior prudence would
be their security and their trust.

This last blow smote upon the heart of the strong
man ; and as Negary glanced down upon his weapon,
and then raised his eyes to the loud brawlers about
him, a gush of tears fell on his scarred and wasted
cheek ; and he besought of them as a friend and as
a father not to make the memory of that day a by-
word of infamy — he talked to them no longer as
their general, for they had rejected him — he im-
plored them as their friend ; but with a bitter laugh
they flung back upon him that bond also.



18 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

When the galling sound fell upon his ear, Negary
hastily brushed away the moisture from his eyes,
and raising his naked weapon above his head, he
exclaimed sternly : '' This is then your resolve —
I have heard and noted it ; and now hear mine. I
thank my fate that among all the dastards who now
throng about me, I see not one Hungarian — but I
might have been sure of this — And I thank it yet
again, that all our wide and suffering country, were
it to be searched from the Moravian frontier to the
confines of Germany, could not produce so foul a
band of traitors ! Again I swear to you that from
this fortress I never will depart alive, save as its
master ; and to this vow I add another, which may
more interest yourselves — never to suffer any one
among you to quit it as a coward ; but to hold you
within its walls as jealously as though you were true
men, in order that I may not myself be disgraced
through your unworthy means !"

The Baron Pekry, who had followed the muti-
neers into the presence of their general, in vain
endeavoured to awaken a better feeling among
them ; they would listen to no arguments, and were
deaf to all entreaties ; nor did the vow of the brave



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 19

soldier to live and die with his friend and chief,
shake one resolve.

Baffled, but not rebuked, the mutineers withdrew
from the apartment of the Count, only to return
when the night-guard had been posted, to demand
the keys of a subterranean passage which extended
from the outworks of the castle into the open coun-
try beyond. They were sternly refused ; when
one of the renegades had the audacity to raise his
hand agrainst the Count, whose forbearance being: at
length exhausted, with one stroke of his sabre
severed it from the wrist, and it fell, a bleeding
mass, upon the floor. The enraged band, seeing
the fate of their comrade, then rushed upon the be-
trayed general, and but for the resolute interposition of
Pekry would have slain him on the spot ; while in
the melee the keys were wrenched from his girdle.

Their aim accompHshed, the rebels assembled
tumultuously in the court-yard; and for the last
time, Negary, wounded and bleeding from their
violence, staggered into a balcony which com-
manded their place of meeting, and from thence
earnestly exhorted them to return to their duty.
Of the whole remnant of his garrison twenty only



20 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

answered the appeal ; the rest were intoxicated
with the idea of escape and safety from their
dreaded enemy. ^--^ ^

When the deep shadows of midnight lay long
upon the earth, and the pale beams of the moon,
like the sickly memory of vanished hopes, fell
across the faces of the devoted few who remained
true to their trust, they alone, with their chiefs, were
left within the walls of Szolnok ; and it was then,
when he knew that the traitors had indeed departed
from among them for ever, that INegary, supported
by his faithful Pekry, once more stood in the midst
of his gallant little band. He was wan and faint,
and under the clear blue moonlight his complexion
looked livid and ghastly ; yet still there was a noble
daring on his brow, and a fire in his large dark
eye, which told that the bold spirit was not quenched
within him.

-'For awhile he did not trust himself to speak; but
after glancing a hasty look over the devoted little
trof/p who had clung to him in his extremity, he
exte ided a hand to each, for each had in that hour
become to him as a dear familiar friend ; and then,
when all had pressed it with a respectful eagerness



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 21

that seemed to endow him with new strength, he said
slowly and painfully, but in an accent of trustful
pride, which made a hero of every man to whom he
spoke : "I must not repine — -I dare not — I have
lain among vipers, and I have shook them off. My
friends, let us pity while we condemn them ; they
did not fight for their own land ; we are all Mag-
yars ! We must die, but we shall all die together ;
our country will embalm our memory wath her
tears; and none will stand beside our graves, and
brand our names with infamy. I will not deceive
you — we have no other hope. Let us then, in this
solemn hour, devote ourselves fearlessly to the glo-
rious death which awaits us ; let us die, one for all,
and all for one !"

The pledge was given — earnestly, truthfully —
like the vow of the dying, soon to redeem his pro-
mise at that tribunal where there is neither evasion
nor deceit ; and then Negary dismissed every man
to his respective post, where each was to do the
work of three ; reserving to himself the most dan-
gerous, maimed and exhausted as he was; and
claiming his right to the perilous guard at the great
gate of the fortress.



22 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

These necessary arrangements completed, the
gallant leader himself superintended the distribution
of an extra quantity of provision to the whole band ;
and after again thanking them for redeeming in his
eyes the character of his fellow-men, and saving
his memory as well as their own from contempt
and dishonour ; he shut himself for a time into his
chamber to ask a blessing from the Almighty
Ruler of all things on this last effort for his coun-
try ; and then dressing himself in his most splendid
uniform, as though he had been bidden to a court
festival, he placed the keys of the fortress in hi?5
embroidered girdle ; and unfolding, as he believed
for the last time, the banner of his bleeding coun-
try, he rejoined his little garrison with the light of
courage in his eye, and its calm upon his lip.

Day had scarcely dawned when the Turks, after
a temporary cessation of hostilities, resumed their
heavy cannonade ; and the massy walls of Szolnok
almost seemed to reel under the weight of the missiles
which were hurled against them. The fire of the In-
fidels was but feebly returned, and they were not slow
to discover that something very extraordinary must
have occurred within the fortress. Resolved to profit



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 23

by what might prove to be merely a temporarj' ad-
vantage, Ali, with admirable judgment, at once com-
manded an assault ; and with loud cries of " Allah
hu !" the Infidels mshed furiously to the walls,
without encountering any obstacle. But they were
no sooner massed together in a dense body within
range of the guns of the fortress, than Negary, w^ho
had pointed all his ordnance towards the threatened
spot, applied the match to every cannon that he
possessed, and swept down whole ranks of his tur-
baned enemies, as though the breath of the pesti-
lence had passed over them.

The check was, however, only momentary, for
the numerical strengfth of the Moslems beinof suf-
ficiently great to enable the Vezir to detach strong
bodies of men from the main army, some of the par-
ties thus employed had discovered the unprotected
state of the walls in the rear of the fortress ; and ac-
cordingly, ascending them without difficulty, they
gained the ramparts, and startled the ears of the
besieged with their wild cries of triumph. In this
emergency Negary collected his little band about
him in the gateway, which was protected by a large
cannon loaded wdth iron chains, balls, and other



24 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

missiles, which, as the Turks forced the gate, was
fired upon their advancing ranks, and made fright-
ful havoc. But all resistance was vain, for the In-
fidels, enraged at the wholesale slaughter of their
unhappy comrades, leapt with savage shouts over
their yet writhing bodies, and poured thick and fast
into the castle; and the gallant but attenuated
garrison, although they fought like lions, were ere
long overpowered.

Deluged with blood, and fainting from no less
than seventeen wounds, Negary sank down, as he
fondly hoped, to die ; and near him lay stretched
his fellow-soldier Pekry, beneath the gun-carriage,
surrounded by the ghastly corses of friends and
foes.

The Turks took possession of the long-contested
Castle of Szolnok, but it was a victory w^hich cost
them dear, for eight thousand of their best men lay
dead before the fortress ; and it was with mingled
feelings of astonishment and rage that they dis-
covered by what a mere handful of Christians they
had been so long successfully resisted. Never-
theless, even amid his indignation, Ali could not
refuse his tribute of admiration to the heroic conduct



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 25

of his adversaries, and intimated that he desired to
see their leader, even although he were no longer in
life. Search was accordingly made for Negary;
and it was no sooner ascertained that he did not
make one of the little band who, pale and bleeding,
yet stood apart from their captors in silent and
dogged despair, than he commanded that his body
should be sought where the dead lay thickest :
'•For there;" said the Moslem hero, appreciating
the valour which had so well tested his own ; *'he
will assuredly be found."

And he was right — the glittering and gorgeous
dress dabbled with blood, which betrayed the rank
of its wearer, was dragged from amid a pile of
slain ; and although none beUeved that he yet lived
even the Infidels handled it gently, as it still com-
pelled respect ; while Ali himself, as he bent over it
for a moment, and wiped away the red stream from
the high brow, and the long locks which had so
lately shaded it, seemed to forget that he looked
upon an enemy and a Christian, and to remember
only that this was all that now remained of what had
been a soldier and a hero.

The breath of heaven fell cool upon the pallid

VOL. IT. C



26 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

forehead of Negary ; and he had not long been
released from the pressure of the dead and dying
among whom he had lain so lately, when a deep and
labouring sigh announced to the bystanders that life
was not yet extinct. Slowly and carefully he was
carried into the castle, as well as his lieutenant
Pekry, who, although desperately wounded, had
also survived ; and every means was used to solace
and revive them ; for the Turks were so well aware
of the value of both, that they felt convinced of their
being gladly ransomed by their countrymen at a
heavy sum.

In a few days, when the fever of their wounds had
abated, they were conveyed to Temesvar, to await
the perfect restoration of their health, and treated
kindly, both from respect, and anticipated profit.

John Sigismund Zapolya, whose vacillation of
character was for a time the curse of his country,
although he had resigned his crown to Ferdinand,
had never wholly abandoned the hope of one day
resuming his sovereignty ; and he lost no opportunity
of gaining over to his interest every noble of influence
and reputation, whose principles were politically
doubtful. The pohcy of this hne of conduct was



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 27

unquestionably more commendable than its honesty,
but the fact did not tend to lessen its success ; for
more than one brave and wealthy noble yielded to
the misfortunes of the abdicated prince what he
would never have conceded to his authority ; and,
conscious of this truth, Zapolya lost no time in
dispatching one of his secret agents to Temesvar,
with courteous greetings to the two heroes of
Szoluok, and an offer to redeem them on the
instant, if they would pledge themselves thence-
forward tx) his party.

They succeeded only with the Baron Pekry, to
whom captinty among the Turks was so full of
horror, that he wilhngly escaped it at any price,
Negary was formed of less plastic material ; and,
hateful as he felt his position to be, he yet preferred
it to what he considered dishonour — He had sworn
fealty to Ferdinand — and this he stated to be the
only answer which he could permit himself to
return to the overtures of Zapolya.

Accordingly, the ransom of his brother-soldier was
paid ; and Pekry was a freeman when he entered the
chamber of Negary to part from him, probably for
ever.

c2



28 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. _

^'- '-¦¦-¦': js'/^::^:' .in; -a'

"Farewell;" said the Count kindly, but gravely;
" I could have wished that my grief at this separa-
tion had been less alloyed, and that the memory of
Pekry had come across me in the future without a
shade over it. Be true to your new master, my old
comrade: you have been false to yourself, b>ut jou
may yet do your duty to other^^^j^ ^^ h«s"Bdoxe
Q+ As he spoke he extended his hand to the Baron,
and felt a tear drop upon it, ere it was resigned ; but
he made no comment: and ^ in another moment
Pekry left the chamber. ^,,.,,,^.,„tt ^^ ^:^.. ^.,_^, ^_,
f, Finding the ransom fail for his principal prisoner^
the renegade Achmet Pasha resolved on sending him
to Constantinople; a proceeding which had been fre-
quently efficacious in wringing the red gold from the
relatives of the captives, who too well knew what the
fate of the unfortunates would be on their arrival
in the Moslem capital. In the case of the Count
Negary it failed, however ; for the ransom was not
forthcoming when the condemned prisoners were
prepared for their departure, and he was accordingly
added to the melancholy band.

Not a sun rose above his native hills during the
brief period of his suspense, upon which the sad but



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 29

high-hearted captive did not gaze as though he
would have cracked his eye-strings; for he knew
not, as he looked on each, whether it were not the
last that he might ever see in his own land — the
last he should care to see until he died !

At length the moment came ; and when he had
exchanged an abrupt but kind farewell with AH
Pasha, Negary felt that he was indeed abandoned to
a fate worse than death. The journey to the fron-
tier was difficult and fatiguing ; but so long as he
trod the soil of Hungary, the prisoner cared neither
for difficulty nor fatigue; it was when they had
passed the boundary that the whole weight of his
misfortune fell upon him ; and he drooped, less
under the imraanly cruelties and inhuman treat-
ment of his captors, than under the influence of his
own mental wretchedness.

Amid pain of spirit, and toil of limb, whose very
memory made him shudder in after years, he
reached, with his companions in misery, the capital
of the Infidels. It was on a bright morning that
they first beheld the glorious Bosphorus, gemmed
with swiftly-darting caiques, glittering in the sun-
light, and framed in with lordly mosques and



^6 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

painted palaces ; the blue waters of the Propontis
dancing joyously along the marble terraces of the
Serai of Amurath ; and the giant mountain of
Olympus, with its crown of snow, towering vast and
tall in the distant perspective ; and hopeless and
heart-sick as they were, they could not refuse a
moment's homage to the masterpiece of Nature
which was spread out before them ; but despair is a
stern task -mistress, and even before a rude blow and
a harsh jibe once more hurried them onward, the
prisoners had already relapsed into wretchedness.
-' V The galleys of the arsenal received them all ; and
no contrast could be more sudden, and more utter,
than that from the beautiful world without, to this
sink of filth, and vice, and misery. Europe pro-
bably possesses no other prison whose horrors equal
those of the Constantinopolitan galleys — hope can-
not enter there — the oath, the lash, and the chain,
mingle their frightful diapason with the groans and
tears of the captives. i^^^»* -^^ liyilqiiioaai^ o.

In a few weeks no one, however near in blood or
in affection, could have recognised Negary ; and he
ceased to struggle against his fate when he found
that his family, aroused into energy by his mise-



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 31

rable condition, had repeatedly offered a splendid
ransom to the Pasha of Buda, which had been
sternly and haughtily refused ; and for a long dreary
year he abandoned himself to despair, when, in
1553, a ray of hope streamed across his spirit, and
he once more began to dream of liberty and his
country. icriBi^Bm erft oi snoemod a'in*>fnr» -i

Ferdinand, weary of the war, which was occupy-
ing his councils, wasting his army, and exhausting
his resources, sent a special mission to Constan-
tinople, consisting of the Bishop of Funfkirchen,
Anton Verax, and Zay, to negociate a peace. By a
lucky accident the filth-laden and squalid prisoner
of the galleys contrived to approach the party ; and
to satisfy them, although with some difficulty, of
his identity. After a thousand expressions of sym-
pathy and indignation, the strangers gave Negary
the strongest assurances of their desire to effect his
liberation, and their resolution to leave no means
untried to accomplish it with all speed ; a consum-
mation which they did not doubt would be the
more readily brought to bear, as they had received
express directions from the Emperor Ferdinand,
who was grateful to him for the constancy with



32 ,^THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

which he had adhered to the Imperial cause, even
to his own ruin, to ascertain whether he yet lived ;
and in the event of such being the case, to accom-
plish his ransom at any sacrifice.

But the very earnestness of their efforts only
tended to increase the difficulty ; for the Turkish
ministers no sooner understood that the Christian
monarch himself was anxious for the liberation of
their captive, than they set aside the subject alto-
gether, by declaring that while so important a
measure as that of considering the expediency of a
peace was under discussion, it was impossible to
entertain any frivolous detail which might be
arranged when weightier matters were decided. This
subterfuge was so shallow that it was impossible
for the disappointed ambassadors to mistake its
meaning; and consequently all that they could
now do, was to insist upon an interview with the
prisoner ; in which they told him, not without tears,
that they could no longer hold out to him a single
hope of freedom, all prospect of a speedy peace being
destroyed by the exorbitant demands of the Turks ;
with which compliance on the part of the Emperor
was utterly impossible.



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 33

-^ -'It was a sad sig^ht to behold that crushed and
withered man, as he listened to the frightful tale ;
and then dropped upon his knees before the vene-
rable prelate, to crave of him' a ^ "blessing whiA
might avail him in his death-agony. Hope was
extinguished within him: he believed that he
looked for the last time into the faces of country-
men and brothers, and he bowed himself down for
that benison which was to anoint him for the burial.
^ The solemn moment passed by ; and the three
friends alternately held him to their hearts, and
wept over him, and bade him look beyond the
grave for that happiness which alone could repay
him for all the misery of his present life — and then
all was over — they carried away his greetings to the
loved ones whom he had left in his own land ; his
homage to the Emperor, to whom he bade them
swear that he was yet happier in his chains as his
true ser\'ant and soldier, than he could ever have
been if free and dishonoured ; and his prayers that
they would remember him in their orisons, when
they once more knelt in a Christian temple to a true
God. And so they parted — the Envoys to embark
for their own land, with their mission unaccom-

c 3



34 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

plished ; and the prisoner to his den of dreariness
and despair !

Months passed away ; and the waning strength
of Negary led him to hope that death would soon
mock the malice of his jailors, and set him free for
ever ; when he was one day accosted by the officer
of the guard, under whose directions the gang to
which he was attached were pursuing their revolt-
ing toil. It was the first time that the voice of
kindness had fallen upon his ear since the departure
of his countrymen ; and as the Moslem questioned
him with apparent interest of his country, condoled
with him on his unhappy fate, and told him how
willingly he would have rendered it less wretched
had he dared to do so, the heart of the captive
Count swelled almost to bursting ; and in the first
moment of emotion, he felt as though he could
pour out to this new and unexpected friend all his
sorrow and his despair ; but in the next instant, a
dark suspicion crossed his mind : this seeming kind-
ness might be a mere plot to entice him into violent
language, which would in its turn become a plea for
increasing his sufferings, and even taking his life ; and
this fair-spoken Infidel an emissary of the Vezir's.



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 35

Acting upon this probability, Negary curbed his
passion, and made short and unmeaning answers to
every question; but he was so much weakened by
famine and labour, that he was unable to control his
tears ; and when his country was named, they rained
down his furrowed cheeks in such showers that his
pride took the alarm, and he was just about to ex-
plain to the Moslem that they arose merely from
physical weakness, and not from mental cowardice,
when on raising his eyes to the face of the stranger,
he perceived that he too was deeply moved ; nor
had he recovered his surprise, when the officer
advancing closer to him, whispered in his own
language : — " Fear me not, my gallant country-
man ; I am not here to betray you, for I too
am a Hungarian — Receive me as a brother, with
love and trust ; and within a fortnight you shall be

Speechless from astonishment and delight, Negary
could only gaze into the face which was turned
towards him, as if he feared to trust the evidence
of his ears, and the rather that it was overshadowed
by the accursed turban ; but the stranger^ anxious
to convince the bewildered Count of his sincerity.



3Gr' THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE; ¦

hurriedly resumed, without waiting for reply or
comment from his listener^erftB^ b hsd I oiBfirr basi
ii;:ff You are surprised ; you must be : but you shall
doubt no longer. I am indeed a Hungarian,
noble Count, although of obscure blood. My name
is Stephen Husza ; my father fell in battle against
the Infidels; and my mother, who followed him to
the camp, was made prisoner together with myself,
who then a boy of ten years old stood at her side.
How well I remember that fearful day 1 my father's
gory and disfigured body — my mother's screams and
tears — my own wonder and affright. Alas ! ere we
reached Constantinople, I had no longer a parent ;
the agony of the- past and the terror of the future,
added to the hardships and indignities of the
journey, killed my poor mother ; and I was at once
an orphan and a slave.

" A kind providence protected my helplessness ;
for immediately on my arrival in the capital I was
purchased from the soldier whose property I had
become, by a wealthy merchant of the city, who
being childless, adopted me as a son, and reared me
with tenderness and affection. His faith became
mine; and I grew up a Moslem in all things, save



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 37

that I have ever retained a loving memory of the
land where I had a father and a mother^ and never
knew sorrow ; a clinging to the language with which
my ear had first been familiar, and which I have
whispered to myself fondly when none were by to
listen ; and a firm resolve never to forget the name
which I had borne in my childhood. ^th

ti^ When I had attained to a sufficient age, weary
of the monotonous idleness of the harem, I enrolled
myself among the Janissaries, and have risen from
rank to rank, until I have become an Aga. But I feel
that I am not a Moslem in spirit — an Infidel in heart
— I pant for the free air of the country of my birth;
for the pure ahar of the God of my fathers. I have
heard from the other Christian prisoners, that you are
not only a brave soldier, but an indulgent master to
your vassals, and that even the Emperor himself did
not disdain to intercede for your liberation; and I have
now formed my resolve. Only pledge me your honour
that you will give me a situation in your household,
and that you will never forsake me, and I will deliver
you, if deliverance be possible on this side the grave."
*' Husza;" said Negary, as the man paused ; '' I
will trust you. You are no renegade, either to your



88 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

God or your country, for you were too young when
you bound on the turban, to comprehend all that
you owed to each. I will trust you ; for your true
Magyar blood has asserted itself nobly ; and now
it is my turn to offer a pledge. Hear me then
while I swear, both as a man and a noble, that I
not only accept the aid which you have proffered to
me ; but that if you redeem your promise, and that
success attends our undertaking, I will settle upon
you and your heirs for ever, one of the villages
upon my patrimony, with all that it contains ; and
never lose sight of your interest and advancement
while I have life." 39i sisw IJ

Husza knelt for a brief instant, and kissed the
hand of his future suzerain, when there were none
by to mark the action ; and then revealed rapidly,
but clearly, his project of escape, which was de-
ferred until the next new moon, when he should be
again on duty at the galleys ; but meanwhile, through
the instrumentality of this zealous ally, Negary ac-
quainted the Hungarian ambassador with his pro-
ject, and obtained from him a sum of money, with
which Husza hired a small French brig then about
to sail for Venice.



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 39

Negary, having accomplished the loan, passed
his time in feverish impatience, seeing no more of
Husza, who deemed it necessary to the safety of
both, not to be again found in communication with
the Christian captive, until duty should once more
bring them together.

At length the new moon rose like a diamond
crescent in the heavens, and with her came the
young Aga at the head of his haughty and over-
bearinff band; and amid the confusion of their
arrival, and the departure of those whom they re-
placed, Husza found an opportunity to whisper to
the Count that all was ready.

All was ready ! Negary turned away to hide his
gushing tears, and then he looked around him.
There he stood, surrounded by obscenity, and filth,
and misery, and despair — amid bloodshot eyes that
glared with wild revenge which only waited for its
time — amid livid lips that quivered with blasphemy
and outrage — limbs wasted alike by labour and by
famine, to which the chain festered as it clung —
squalor, pain, and infamy — all that when thus com-
bined, make of this earth a hell ; and then his
thoughts fled onward; and he gasped for breath as



40i> THE HUNGARIAN CASTLEvT

he seemed to see the green valleys and lordly moun-
tains of his own Hungary ! And was he, indeed>
to traverse them again? He did not dare to doubt
iti lest in that moment of intense and conflicting
emotion, his brain should fail him.

An appearance of order was no sooner established
among the newly-arrived guard, than Husiza
approached Negary, whom he addressed with the
greatest harshness; and on some reply from the
Count of which he affected not to approve, he
ordered him instantly to be flogged ; suffering him-
self, however, to be dissuaded from his purpose by
the entreaties of the other prisoners ; but although
he conceded this point to their humble intercessions,
he persisted throughout the day in heaping all ima-
ginable indignities on the uncomplaining captive ;
until, when at sunset the prisoners were mustered in
the common yard, in order to be locked up for the
night, the Aga desired the principal jailor to
deliver the Christian Count into his keeping, as the
Vesir had desired to see him two hours before mid-
night ; when he hinted that the bowstring would pro-
bably provide for the unbelieving father of dogs, and
relieve them of the pollution of his contact; hsidati



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 41

With a familiar nod and a grim smile, the jailor
obeyed ; and a kick and a curse drove the Count
forth into the open street ; but once arrived there,
Husza motioned him onward in silence, and with
rapid steps, under cover of the gathering darkness,
hurried him to his own house ; where clothes and
arms lying all ready prepared, the emancipated
prisoner was soon equipped in the Moslem garb, in
which costume and character he embarked, and ere
the lapse of many days, the Noble and his valuable
ally were safely landed in Venice. Thence they
journeyed by land into Hungary ; and arrived at the
castle of Negary, alike unlooked-for, and iman-
nounced. Great were the rejoicings consequent on
their appearance ; and the Count himself was for a
time scarcely less welcome to his family and his
retainers, than the brave man by whom he had been
liberated. " '

The return of the noble prisoner to the freedom
of his own halls was celebrated by a great festival^
held at his principal castle, which was situated at
Szutzan, in the county of Thurotz, immediately
that he had sufficiently overcome his fatigues to be
enabled to preside ; and when the banquet was at



4*J THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

its height, and he sat surrounded by all that
was great and haughty among the aristocracy of
the province, he called to him Stephen Husza ; and
in the presence of his noble friends, embraced him
affectionately, and placed in his hands a roll of
parchment, which transferred to him and his pos-
terity for ever, the sole possession and lordship of
the village of Kreplan, and an extensive estate near
Szutzan ; and on the morrow the reclaimed Moslem
walked in solemn procession to the church, where
after Te Deum had been chaunted, in gratitude for
the redemption of a Christian from the Turkish
chain, he recanted his involuntary error; and
humbly and gratefully received the baptism that
admitted him once more to the pure altars after
which his soul had yearned for years.

Negary faithfully performed his vow. After a brief
period of repose, his foot was again in the stirrup,
and his weapon in his hand ; and Husza went forth
with him, in humbler guise it is true, but as a be-
loved brother whom he delighted to succour and
to serve ; and so well, and so perseveringly, did he
do this, that the descendants of the noble-hearted
Husza became of good repute[and mark in the



THE DEFENCE OF SZOLNOK. 43

country ; and the family is at the present moment
represented by a Vice-Count, whose reputation alike
for courage and virtue has caused his name to be
honoured wherever it is heard.



^1 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.



molt iiiifxie sw •jc\

Dili lo iB-i sncc H AFTER II. ainddoi

As the Baron concluded his recital, he bowed
gracefully towards the individual to whom he had
just made allusion ; and the gallant Vice-Count
acknowledged the courtesy with a flushed cheek and
a glistening eye.

The little episode was a pleasant one; for each
had something to say which could not fail to be
gratifying to the descendant of the brave and
faithful Husza ; and thus he suddenly found himself
an object of increased interest to the fair dames and
gallant nobles among whom he sat. His honours
were so ancient, and he so well became them, that
he felt only pride in this recurrence to the manner
in which they were first worn ; and his regard for
the young Baron who had thus voluntarily become
their chronicler, increased in proportion to the
delight with which he had listened to the nar-
ration, bneri ecft "or

There is something very ennobling in the pride of



THE HUNGARIAN (JASTLE. 45

ancestry — It is unselfish, for we glory in that which
we have not of ourselves attained ; and it emulates
to virtue and great deeds, for we shrink from
robbing the halo of our name of one ray of the
brightness by which it is surrounded. There is no
leaven in the vanity of long descent ; it is untouched
and untainted by the struggles and strife of the pre-
sent — it does not belong to the coil and the fever of
the passing day : it is a bequest of the past, which
to squander by unworthy actions would be a sin too
monstrous for forgiveness. We may scatter gold,
for we can hope to redeem it ; we may despise
place and power, for we are free agents in all that
regards our own ambition : but he must be indeed
a moral spendthrift who can consent coldly to
gamble away by his own vices, the proud name,
and noble memory, of a long line of gallant an-
cestry. 1 abiiq yiflo llsl sxi
Thus, there is almost virtue in the feeling which
sends the warm blood from the heart to the brow,
when the records of the past to which you are linked
are brought vividly and unexpectedly before you ;
and the Vice-Count, as he wrung the hand of the
young Baron, felt for the moment as though the



46 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Imperial mandate had added another quartering
to his arms.

It was probably in the exuberance of this gra-
tifying emotion that, on resigning the hand of Prat-
nayer, he said smihngly : "I am half tempted to
follow up the recital of my friend with another tale
of tried and faithful service ; nor am I quite sure
that in so doing 1 shall not incur the risk of car-
rying off the palm from my own brave ancestor.
I am willing, however, to submit his good deeds to
the trial ; for the tradition which they have brought
afresh to my memory merits to be rescued from
oblivion. It is indeed an old-world legend, for the
fact occurred even before the invasion of the Turks :
but virtue and fidelity are for all ages and all time,
and will find their way as readily to the heart in
the nineteenth century, as when they first taught
the barbarian hordes who made the pulses of more
civilized nations bleed at every pore, that their real
and permanent superiority existed in their moral
strength, and in their social obligations."

The offer of the Vice-Count was gratefully
accepted. The ladies resumed their respective occu-
pations in anticipatory silence ; and save the Count



THE CASTELLAN. 47

Nicholas PalfFy, who was busily engaged in
making a sketch of a worthy but somewhat obtuse
old Baroness who had fallen asleep in the middle
of the last legend, and who was still slumbering
most peacefully in a large elbowed chair of carved
oak, w4th her high cap of rich lace resting against
the family crest of the host which surmounted the
back of the frame, all were soon intently listening
for the commencement of the promised narrative :
but his avocation, when discovered, produced a
momentary diversion ; and the sketch was con-
demned to make the circuit of the room, and to
undergo the comments of the whole party ere
order was once more restored, and a hearing ob-
tained for the tradition of the Vice-Count ; who
having claimed the drawing as his lawful prize,
from the fact of the fat old lady being his great
aunt, first secured it amid the laughter of the
party, and then bowing with mock gravity towards
the sleeper, at once began his narrative.

THE CASTELLAN.

In the reign of King Bela IV., surnamed the
Jerusalemite from his crusade in the Holy Land,



,48 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Hungary was invaded by a powerful nation from
the far east, of Mangolic-Tartarian origin. This
nation which reached the frontier through Russian-
Poland, was under the control of its General-in-
Chief, Batus, whose principal leaders were Bocheton,
Cadan, Peter Hermens, and some others ; and as
they swept onward, terror spread before them ; and
ruin and desolation marked their progress.

They were still hovering on the frontier, when
the King issued an edict to compel the presence
of every noble with his vassals, in order to oppose
the common and formidable enemy on the first
signal which they might receive that hostilities had
commenced. Among other chieftains this order
extended to that of Loewenstein ; upon which the
good Knight Emmerick instantly prepared to obey
the summons of his sovereign; and so efficiently
and zealously was he seconded by his retainers,
that ere the lapse of many days nothing remained
for the brave soldier to do but to take a fond and
affectionate farew^ell of his family, and sally forth
to dare the issue of the coming struggle.

Until the hour of his departure came, the Knight
had not found time to bestow a thought upon this



THE CASTELLAN. 49

parting ; nor was it until he saw his gallant Arab
fretting at restraint in the court-yard, and flinging
large flakes of foam in the air as it tossed its
graceful neck, and strove to escape from the hand
of the groom who was endeavouring to moderate its
ardour, that he became aware of a sinking of the
heart and a sadness of the spirit, which he would
willingly have shaken off, but could not.

Next to his country and his honour, the gallant
Sir Emmerick loved the Lady Agnes. She had
been so young, so beautiful, and so innocent when he
made her his bride ; she had become so excellent a
wife, and so staid and queenly a matron ; and she
had reared his brave boys and his fair and gentle
girls in such sweet peace and beautiful obedience,
that the household of Loewenstein had grown into
a proverb in the province. Sad indeed was the
parting, for the Lady Agnes well knew the half-
savaore and barbarous nature of the enemies against
whom her lord was about to contend; and the
most gloomy forebodings pressed upon her spirit.

" Had one of our dear boys been only old enoiigh
to have fought beside thee, my Emmerick;" she
said fondly, as she stood with her arm about his

VOL. II. D



§0 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

neck, and her head pillowed upon his shoulder;
'' methinks I should not have grieved so much at
thy departure ; for the saints would have loved so
fair a sight, and have protected thee for thy child's
sake, and for mine. But thou goest forth alone
against these barbarians, and I am loth to let thee
quit me."

" Nay, madam, and my good mistress" — inter-
posed a hoarse voice at her elbow ; and turning
suddenly towards it, the Lady Agnes beheld at her
side the stalwart and lofty form of Andrew Budiak,
the Castellan of Loewenstein, one of the most
tried and faithful of her husband's followers; a
man who although past his prime, was still as bold
in the battle-field as he was true in the castle-hall ;
and who had won his present post by long years of
fidelity and service. Budiak was looked upon with
reverence by all the household, and with trust and
favour by the Knight and his fair wife ; while to the
happy boys who grew up in beauty beneath his
eye, he was at once a playmate, a protector, and a
friend.

" Nay, madam, and my good mistress ;" said
the deep voice of the Castellan ; " that may still be



THE CASTELLAN. 51

as it pleases my lord, for there is no need that one
like he should go forth without a trusty heart at his
stirrup. I am weary of the dull safety of Loe-
wenstein ; it chafes my hasty and restless spirit ;
and I humbly pray him to reclaim the honours of
the post I have so long held, and to let me go with
him against these Tartar fiends."

" And the Lady Agnes — and her children" — said
the Knight, looking affectionately but upbraid-
ingly on his follower : " Who is to protect them
while I am absent, if my faithful Budiak forsake
them also ?"

'^ Every vassal who has eaten of his lord's bread,
and trod the halls of Loewenstein ;" replied the
Castellan : " or he were unworthy the name of
man; nor do I believe that there breathes one
within these walls to-day, who would betray so holy
and so dear a trust."

" He says well, my noble Emmerick ;" whis-
pered the lady : " for me there is no risk. Let him
bear thee company ; I shall deem thee far safer if
our good Budiak be near thee ; and in the same
orisons which I make to heaven for thee, I will
murmur his name also."

d2



UNIVERSITY ^
JUINOIS UBRA»



5*i THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

The prayer of the Lady Agnes was complied
with ; and when the gallant troop of the Lord of
Loewenstein swept across the drawbridge on their
way to join the army, Andrew Budiak rode at their
head beside his master, and a new Castellan held
authority in the fortress, huB .b'^^iy^p ybn'^'^'^lhtf'^
bsAll the chieftains had not, however, armed with
the same promptitude as this brave knight, for the
incursions of the Mongolic tribes had become so
frequent, and were often so apparently aimless —
unless indeed the constant harass which they kept
up could be considered as an adequate object — that
the exertion of one powerful noble had generally
sufficed to repulse them; and the present danger
did not, consequently, impress the minds of the
nation at large as it might otherwise have done.
The effect of this false security was necessarily to
induce a want of energy to resist it ; and whether
or not it had been contemplated by the invaders
that such would be the case, it is certain that a
great portion of the country was ravaged and laid
waste, before the royal army, encamped under the
walls of Buda, was yet sufficiently strong to be able
to encounter the enemy. mMsl &ai m tf'^uim



THE CASTELLAN. 53

At length, however, some reinforcements having
arrived, it was resolved to make the attempt : the
tents were struck ; the whole mass set in motion ;
and after a few days' march the royal troops fell in
with the vanguard of the Tartars ; but as these were
indifferently armed, and unprepared at the moment
for such a rencontre, they were easily overpowered
and taken. This success serving as a good omen,
the Hungarian army quickened its movements ; and
with as little delay as was compatible with the
transport of a large body of men through so wild
and difficult a country, it arrived on the bank of
the river Lago, where Batus had encamped the
whole of his forces.

Unfortunately for the Hungarians, this wild but
singularly-endowed chief was well prepared lo
receive them ; and the battle which immediately
ensued proved most disastrous in its results to the
lords of the soil ; for in that fight the flower of the
native nobiUty fell on all sides, the country was laid
open to the invaders, and the King himself nar-
rowly escaped with life, after having encountered
both danger and suffering, and found a wretched
refuge in the Dalmatian islands, where he was



54 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

compelled to become an eye-witness of horrors
which threatened the irretrievable ruin of the king-
dom, and which he could neither terminate nor
controul.

Never was a battle more fatal than that which
made the river-tide of the Lago run red with the
blood of both Christian and Infidel. The Tartarian
troops suffered severely, and their slain cumbered
the green sward; but Hungary had to weep not
only her bravest but her noblest. High heads were
bowed that day, and high hearts stilled for ever —
there was scarcely a hearth throughout the land
beside which one seat was not made vacant. Death
had a rich harvest ! But, alas ! the evil ended not
here, for they who fell were comparatively blessed ;
their cares were over; and when the broad sun
went down after the fight, it gilded with its good-
liest beams the graves of those who slept beneath
them. The pale dawn rose, and the mountain
vapours unwound their clammy wreaths from
peak and pinnacle, as the radiant beam came on ;
but with the Hght and the warmth of day came
also the wild victors among the dying and the
dead, to plunder those whose task was ended, and



THE CASTELLAN. 55

to secure the wounded, who might hereafter be
ransomed.

Of the latter number were the Knight of Loe-
wenstein and his faithful Budiak, who had fought
and fallen together ; and who, having partially re-
covered consciousness, and given unequivocal signs
of life, were lifted from the earth, conveyed into
the Tartar camp, and assigned by lot to the Chief
Cadan.

A few days of rest were reluctantly ceded to
them, for their wounds were numerous and severe ;
but their savage master had no sooner ascertained
that no actual risk of their dying by the way still
existed, than they were chained together, and with
a score of other unfortunates, also Unked two and
two, and attached by the centre of their fetters to
the stirrup of a Tartar horseman, bearing a long
and pliant lance in his hand, a bow slung at his
saddle-bow, and a quiver of arrows at his back,
they were dragged or driven onward, and not un-
frequently impelled by blows, towards the home of
their captor. This they only gained after many days
and nights of agony and struggle beneath which
some of their comrades sank, and were left by the



56 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

road-side where they fell, to become the prey of
obscene birds, and the banquet of the jackal and
the wolf; with curses for their requiem, and Heaven
for their avenger !

The most sanguine spirit among the miserable
little band had not ventured to nourish one hope of
escape by the way, for the very nature of the arms
carried by their captors rendered evasion impos-
sible, even had the prisoners themselves possessed
physical strength to attempt it ; and when at length
their wretched journey ended, they felt that they were
doomed men ; for the leisure produced by cessation
from toil only sufficed to give them a more perfect
and despairing sense of their hopeless position.

The first intelligence which reached the Castle of
Loewenstein after the battle, filled the heart of the
Lady Agnes with terror and anxiety ; and she im-
mediately dispatched a trusty vassal, on whose
ability and zeal she could depend, to ascertain the
fate of her lord. For a long weary month she
received no tidings; but when her messenger did
indeed return, he came to the halls of his master
only too soon, for he brought with him the appal-
ling tidings, that both the Knight and his follower



2^ MTHE CASTELLAN. 57

had fallen beneath the Tartar arrows, in the very
thickest of the fight.

It were vain to attempt to depict the agony of the
widowed mother, as she listened to the fatal tale.
"Dead!" she exclaimed wildly: ''What! the
father of my boys? The Lord of Loewenstein, who
hath ever made his foemen lick the dust, and
scattered terror before him as he went ? It cannot
be ! You would mock me, because I am here

alone, and that he is not by to comfort me "

And then she wept, and none sought to controul her
tears, for they knew that without this kindly dew
such grief might craze her brain ; but they brought
her children to her, and placed her last-born on her
knee; and then they left her for awhile in her
sorrow, for they felt that it was too sacred to look
upon at such a moment.

They judged well and wisely, for after the lapse
of two or three hours, the Lady Agnes came forth ;
and with all her little ones about her, her infant
nestling upon her heart, and her elder boy cHnging
to her hand, she moved to the upper end of the hall.
Jfif' Shall we not bid the dead rest?" she asked in
a low hollow tone : ''And how know we whether

D 3



6S THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

an orison bath been said over them ? Summon all
within the ramparts of the castle; ay, even those
who watch, and let us to the chapel — we have a holy
duty to perform — see that it be done speedily."

And it was done. At midnight the requiem of
the departed was solemnly chaunted by torchlight,
and before the altar knelt the Lady and her child-
ren, covered with sable draperies, and mingling
with the holy words of worship the choking sobs of
human suffering; while from the body of the
chapel, where clustered the vassals and men-at-
arms, the low sigh of manly grief might be heard at
intervals, as the solemn strain rose and fell ; for all
had loved the gallant Lord of Loewenstein, and
thus all mourned for him. ^- ^.^h^'

Emmerick, meanwhile," was wasting his days in
toil, and suffering, and tears. Occasionally he
heard tidings of his country, but they were always
sad ones, gathered from the fresh prisoners who
were from time to time brought in : of his home no
intelligence had ever reached him ; and bitter in-
deed were the visions which he conjured up of what
might have befallen his wife and his little ones
amid the devastation of his devoted and unhappy



JT*ME CASTEXLAN. 59

land; nor could even his faithful Budiak talk to
him of hope, or bid him believe that his home had
been respected. All was despair about them : the
heavy chain to which they were attached was cor-
roding and sapping their life-blood ; they were
worn down wath labour, squalid in their rags, and
haggard from want of food. What had they to
hope?

Things were in this state when the Tartar gene-
ral once more returned from an invading expedition
rich with booty, and having made so many prisoners
as greatly to diminish the amount of labour hitherto
enforced upon each individual captive; and thus,
where previously a momentary cessation from toil
had been visited with the lash, it was now not only
permitted, but frequently enjoined, where the bodily
weakness of the labourer rendered such indulgence
necessary ; and even from among the wasted slaves
of Cadan many a thanksgiving went up to Heaven
for so blessed and unlooked-for a relaxation of
torture.

It chanced that one evening, overcome by exer-
tion under a burning sun, the Lord of Loewenstein
and his companion sank down side by side, upon



60 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

their bed of leaves, within the den which had
been assigned to them, when Budiak, in the act of
turning away his head from his master that he
might not seem to be watching his misery, caught
sight of an axe which had been accidentally left
in their cell by one of the hired labourers em-
ployed in erecting sheds for the newly-arrived
captives, who were so numerous as to require
additional places of shelter ; and without even ask-
ing himself a question as to its probable utility, or
forming any plan in which it might avail, he hastily
concealed it within his garments. As he did so, a
new hope, strong and resistless, sprang up within
him ; although he could shape it into no tangible
form or likeness, nor torture his invention into any
scheme of deliverance which was not only too
vague but even too impossible for accomplishment.
The night wore on ; the watch had been set ; each
prisoner had answered as his name had been chal-
lenged by the captain of the guard ; and the deep
slumber of over- wrought strength — that sleep which
is without rest, and almost without blessing — had
fallen upon the miserable band, when Budiak
revealed to the Knight the secret of his newly-



.IJT^HE CASTELLAN. ^^ 6^1

acquired treasure. Their first impulse was sponta-
neous: chained as they were together, all escape
was impossible; but this strong instrument, which
seemed to have been placed in their hands by
Providence, would sever those galling fetters, and
set them free. Accordingly, with great caution,
and muffling the sound of the iron links with the
folds of their coarse garments, the two captives
commenced their attempt ; but every effort proved
fruitless: the ponderous chain was too substantial
to be so severed : and after they had alternately ex-
hausted their feeble remain of strength in the vain
endeavour, they desisted in despair, and as they did
so, each turned aside to weep.

'' It avails not ;" at length exclaimed the Knight;
" we are fated to die like felons, and we must sub-
mit — there is no hope — would that there were also
no memory. What a curse has the past become to
me ! I grow old as I call it back. Budiak, I love
you — I mourn for you — I cannot forget that it is
for me that you are here, when you might have been
free, and honoured, and happy — Happy ! how
happy ? for you might have been at this moment
breathing the same air as my wife — my Agnes —



62 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

sporting with her children — treading the halls of
Loewenstein in freedom ; and now what are you ?"

" Your own poor servant, my good Lord ;" was
the reply, as the faithful follower turned painfully
upon his rugged bed, and raised the hand of his
chieftain to his lips, which were moistened by the
blood-drops that his late struggle to rend the chain
had collected on his maimed and smarting fingers ;
"Your own poor servant, suffering for you and with
you, and thus far happier than if he were himself the
Lord of Loewenstein! Would you think of me
when the chain is rusting into your own flesh ?"

'' Budiak;" said the noble prisoner, and as he
spoke he flung his arms, fettered as they were,
about his follower, until the jealous chain seemed to
have blended them into one ; '' I thank you from
my soul, for I believe you ; but even your affection
cannot blot out the memory of the past — the thought
of what may be even in the present. My angel
wife ! Should dishonour — should insult come to
]icY' — but I dare not think ! Budiak, our country
is one hecatomb — our homes are no longer sacred —
our wives, our sisters, our daughters, may be the
spoil of the savage— the Tartar ! I tell you once



THE CASTELLAN. KT 63

again I dare not think, for my brain whirls, and
my veins run fire ; and I feel as though you would
be ere long linked to a maniac, who, in the forget-
fulness of all that once made life a hallowed and a
holy thing, may turn and rend you."

" My honoured Lord " interposed the Cas-
tellan. uiJB tiJjsi isiu jjslii <Olb-i»uol<i

''Mock me not:" groaned otit the Knight;'
" What am I that thou shouldst play with me, and
give me gentle names, such as women love to lavish
on their suitors ? Rather let me die — die here — here
on this pile of mouldering corruption — on these foul
leaves that we have been in mercy suffered to col-
lect. Let me die ! What am I that any should call
me Lord? Have I not become a by- word and a
mockery ? But I care not for myself — it is for her
— for Agnes. Oh ! could I only know that she
was free from terror and from taint " johobo

'' You shall know it, my noble Lord ;" once more
interposed Budiak ; " Despair not ; nature some-
times shrinks for a time, but she redeems herself at
last ; I can support my own misery, for I am alone
in the world; glory has been my mistress, and,!^
have known no other ; I am the child and the vo-



^ THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

t ary of fortune, and though the chances have now
turned against me, I have no right to rebuke my
fate ; for, thanks to you, my brave and honoured
master, I have in my time dealt far heavier blows
than I have yet received. With you it is otherwise ;
you were born to greatness, and you have lost jrour
birthright, but it must be redeemed."
, *' Alas ! there is no hope" — murmured the
Knicfht ; as he buried his face in his hands.

He was aroused by a heavy blow. Not one which
had fallen upon a hard and resisting substance, but
which produced a crashing and smothered sound,
that, although he knew not why, thrilled to the
very core of his heart.

•' What have you done, Budiak ?" he asked hur-
riedly.

rvr<' My Lord ! my benefactor!" gasped out the
voice of his follower ; " There was but the accursed
Tartar chain between you and freedom, and we
could not burst it. It holds you here no longer :
go — rejoin your wife, and be happy. Tell her "

As he paused in agony, and raised his hand to
dash the sweat-drops from his brow, the Knight bent
towards him to discover the secret of his terrible



THE CASTELLAN. 65

emotion, when with a groan of misery he sank back
in his turn, exclaiming :

" Tell me that I dream — I dare not — will not
believe that you have done this — Budiak ! tell me
that I am under the influence of some foul fiend,
who mocks me with a deed of horror."

'' Calm yourself, my Lord, and think of flight :'*
replied the heroic vassal ; and as he spoke, he
raised himself, with a violent effbrt, and wrenched
away from the fetter by which it had been so long
encircled, the leg which he had hewn from his body
in order to accomplish the escape of his master :
'' Let me fling off this useless limb, which never
served me so well as it has done this day. And
now be wary, my good lord, and you are free ; for
our Infidel captors have trusted largely to the
chain, and speed and silence will almost ensure
success."

'* Never !" said Emmerick, as he threw his arms
about the devoted man ; " I will never leave you
here alone — maimed for my sake — a prey to the
lash ; or perhaps — Oh, Mary Mother, avert it ! to
die without one friendly voice to murmur peace in
your last moments.'



66 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

'* Will you then condemn me to feel that I have
made this sacrifice in vain ?" asked Budiak. " Will
you compel me to see my own sufferings aggra-
vated by your participation in them, without
having the power to alleviate a single pang? Have
you forgotten that if you are found here at dawn
we shall both be the victims of an act for which I
alone should be responsible ? You will not — can-
not bid me suffer this. Come, come, my Lord,
arouse yourself and depart; and let my bodily
sufferings be forgotten in the intense yearning with
which I shall follow you in thought upon your
homeward path." .*i>.K/^ o.ii ^^^x^- ^..

"I will not leave you thus" — persisted the
Knight.

*' Nay then — hear the truth :" and once more the
gallant Castellan raised himself upon his arm, and
struggled against the faintness which was rapidly
overcoming his strength ; " even now I feel that I
am dying — my heart flutters awhile like a newly-
caged bird, and then stands still ; and the blood
that is draining my veins drops cold and thick, as
though little more remained to shed. Farewell ; bid
my lady say an orison for my soul — from her lips it



THE CASTELLAN. 67

will bring me peace — and the brave boys — and my
poor country — I never loved them half so well as
now !"

The last words were scarcely gasped out when the
sufferer fell back heavily upon the earth, cold, rigid,
and unconscious ; nor did the Knight for an instant
doubt that the spirit of the stout soldier had fled for
ever. For a few moments he remained holding the
body in a close embrace, and bedewing the pale
calm face with those tears which are wrung from
the spirit of manhood at a price far more bitter than
blood ; but gradually thoughts of his wife, his home,
his children, and his country — of all that he had
loved and lost — grew thick and fast upon him. He
might yet hold his place among his fellow-men ;
yet revenge himself upon the tyrants who had made
beasts of burthen of some of the best blood of Hun-
gary; who had — curses on them ! — driven his bravest
follower to the frightful act of self-immolation, at
whose very idea his soul sickened and his pulses
shook ; who was now dead — dead in his arms — and
for him ! And then came the thirst for vengeance.
Yes, Budiak should be revenged. He must not have
died a death of blood in vain : and as the Kniarht



68 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

arrived at this resolve, he carefully laid the body of
his unhappy follower back upon its rude resting-
place ; and after a last embrace and a murmured
prayer, hastily enveloped the hated chain in the
folds of the coarse serge in which he was habited,
and stole from the shed.

Budiak had argued rightly. The security of the
ponderous chains with which they encumbered their
prisoners had been so long unimpeachable, that the
Tartar guard kept but careless watch over their
charge ; and accordingly the Knight hastened on
under cover of the darkness, until the return of dawn
warned him to be more cautious ; when availing
himself of the vicinity of a thick wood, he ascended
a leafy tree, and having established himself securely
among the branches, overcome with anxiety and
fatigue he fell into a deep and heavy sleep, from
which hunger at length awoke him.

Having carefully reconnoitred the neighbourhood,
and ascertained that nothing human was to be seen
in its vicinity, he descended from the friendly shelter,
and appeased the craving by which he was tormented
with the fruits and berries that he found growing
about him ; and then, having poured out his spirit



THE CASTELLAN. 69

in prayer and thanksgiving to the Great Being who
had so far protected him, he resumed his journey,
of which the difficulty was much enhanced by the
weight of the ponderous chain that he was com-
pelled to drag along with him; and which to him
appeared still more heavy from its frightful as-
sociations, ^g 9£j'X .xi^Bii b9u§iB i)Bri Ambvii

Difficulty, toil, and hardship were the daily he-
ritage of the Knight as he wandered on ; nor was it
until after many days that he succeeded in finding
a peasant whose pity overcame his terror of dis-
covery, and who consented to rid the poor fugitive
Christian slave of the fetters which so painfully im-
peded his progress. As they fell to the ground,
Emmerick sank upon his knees — Now he was indeed
free ! And with the name of his wife upon his lips,
and the memory of Budiak in his heart, he went on
his way rejoicing, with liberated limbs and reno-
vated hope.

At length, wearied and wayworn^ he reached
a spot whence he could look upon his home;
but even as he stood gazing upward on its tall
towers bathed in light, and its dark frowning
battlements, that formed a warlike and threaten-



70 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

ing coronal to the steep rock which they surmounted,
a solemn strain of music swept downward to the
valley, like a requiem for the dead ; and a cold
chill gathered about the heart of the wanderer, as
he asked of a peasant who stood beside him, and
who had been his guide through the difficult passes
of the mountain, why that mournful strain was
pealing out.

" Stranger :*' was the reply ; " had you been an
inhabitant of our province you would have known
that two years since this very day, the brave Lord
of Loewenstein, on whose castle you are now look-
ing, fell in fight against the Tartars ; and his lady,
who has never yet cast aside her mourning weeds,
is celebrating his annual requiem, surrounded by
all his vassals and retainers. Well may they weep
for him, for few have ever mourned a better
master !" ,L..,;.i ; ,; ^^i

" Why are you not among them, if you mourn
his fate ?" asked the Knight.

" It was this errand which brought me into your
path:" replied the serf; " I am bound for the
castle even now ; and, thanks be to the saints, I
shall not arrive too late."



THE CASTELLAN. 71

'' I will be your companion ;'' said Emmerick :
" the prayers of the soldier and the wayfarer will
be welcome."

" As you will :" was the reply ; and, in another
moment, they were breasting the steep ascent to
Loewenstein; each too much absorbed in his own
reflections to weary his comrade with words ; nor
did the Knight resent the blunt fellowship of his
guide, for two years of famine and wretchedness had
so altered him that he was as one disguised, whom
none might recognise ; and thus he approached his
own halls, in hopefulness of spirit, but the mere
shadow of his former self, clad in rags, and wasted
by famine.

When they reached the chapel they found it
hung with sable drapery, and lighted by torches;
and, even as she had stood before the altar in the
first days of her imaginary widowhood, so stood the
Lady Agnes now, covered from head to foot in a
thick black veil, and surrounded by her children ;
her meek eyes raised to heaven, and her cheek pale
from vigils and regret.

As he looked upon her the Knight could scarcely
refrain from clasping her to his heart, and kissing



72 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

away the tears which were falling fast into her
bosom ; but the solemn service had commenced,
and he felt that he was once more kneeling before
the altar of his faith, and that his first emotions of
gratitude and love were due to Heaven ; but so
strongly was he moved as the rites proceeded, that
many about him looked anxiously and curiously on
the strange man who had come among them at
such a moment, no one knew whence, to weep as
they wept, and to mingle his grief with theirs.

When the service terminated, the Lady Agnes
proceeded from the chapel to the great gate of the
castle, to distribute alms to all such as might be
there to receive them; and no hands save her
own and those of her fair children, were suffered
to aid in the distribution of the food, which as
each received it, was repaid by a prayer for the
dead.

In his turn Emmerick approached the sad and
gentle lady ; but ere he did so, he drew from his
bosom and displayed above his tattered vest, a
small picture of the Virgin, suspended about his
neck by a chain of her own hair, which she had
hung there years before on one of his departures



THE CASTELLAN. 73

for battle; and which, from its utter want of intrinsic
value, his captors had suffered him to retain.

The ornament caught the eye of Geysa, his
elder and favourite son ; and the boy drew to it the
attention of his mother by exclaiming ; " Serve
this poor pilgrim, I beseech you, mother, for he
seems faint from toil and want ; and he must surely
be a good man, for see, even amid his rags he has
preserved a picture of Our Lady, which he might
have sold for food."

Thus urged, the Lady Agnes drew near the men-
dicant, and as her eyes fell upon the relique, she
at once recognised her own gift; but for awhile
she stood speechlessly gazing upon the gaunt an'l
squalid figure before her ; and then, throwing
back her veil, she bent down with parted lips and
distended eye-balls, like one paralyzed by a hideous
dream, and gasped out, " Speak ! Whence are you ?
Speak !"

" Agnes !" murmured a well-known voice ; and,
in the next instant Emmerick once more held his
beloved wife in his arms.

Great was the emotion of all present, when, after
having recovered partially from his fatigues, the

VOL. II. E



74 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Knight told the tale of his sufferings and captivity ;
but when he related the noble act of his devoted
Castellan, sobs and tears broke out on all sides, and
even the strong men wept.

Solemn masses were performed for the repose of
his soul, and alms were distributed in his honour ;
while no day passed in which the Lady Agnes and
her children did not blend the name of the heroic
Budiak with that of his recovered lord.

To return, however, to that devoted servant. The
swoon, for such it was into which he had fallen, and
which had been induced by loss of blood, and by
the almost superhuman efforts that he had made to
conceal the extent of his suffering from his master,
was of long endurance; and effectually checked
the hemorrhage which was fast draining away his
life. In this state he was found in the morning by
the guard, who, alarmed at the non-appearance of
the Knight and himself at their scanty meal,
hastened in search of them.

Their astonishment at the spectacle which awaited
them in the narrow cell, may be imagined; and
when at the command of Cadan, who had been in-
stantly informed of the circumstance of Emmerick's



THE CASTELLAN. 7o

disappearance, and the maimed condition of his
companion, means were used to restore Budiak to
consciousness, which proved ultimately successful,
and that he learned from the hps of the agonized
sufferer the history of the past night, his rage be-
came for a time ungovernable.

" Thou shalt die the death of a dog, vile slave !"
exclaimed the chief ; " without help, and without

pity."

*' I care not;" was the reply: "1 have saved
my master."

'' And he has left thee here to perish :" sneered
the Tartar General.

''He thought me dead ;" said Budiak firmly :
" and Our Lady be thanked ! he is now free, and
will be ere long in his own halls, and in the arms
of his wife."

" Only tell me that thou hast repented the rash
deed, and that were it yet to do thou wouldst
refuse" — urged the astonished Cadan.

" I may not pass away with a lie upon my lips:"
said the Castellan ; " I would lop every limb save
that which did the holy work, could I by the sacri-
fice ensure to him the happiness of a life of freedom

E 2



76 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

and success. And now let me die ; I have nothing
to regret, or to excuse ; and I would fain pray for
my chief and for jiay-eountry,^ while I have yet
breath to do it.'* n.nd - !: ?i

The Tartar General turned aside in deep emotion.
In the half-savage devotion and self-sacrifice of the
Hungarian vassal there was a haughty carelessness
of suffering, and even of life, which he could at
once appreciate and admire.

** He must not perish thus :" he said to his asto-
nished attendants; and then stooping towards the
Castellan, he added gently ; '* Christian, thou hast
conquered. The sun rests to-day upon my weapon,
but its beam may glance off in some hour of peril,
when such love as thine may be beyond all price.
Strive against thy weakness, and live. Care and
rest may yet restore thee; and I swear that for
the sake of the noble lesson thou hast taught to
my own followers, thou shalt no sooner be able
to keep the saddle than I will give thee gold,
and arms, and such a steed as it shall become a
Tartar chieftain himself to cross; and send thee
under a safe escort to thine own people and
thine own land, that the proud Hungarians may



THE CASTELLAN. 11

learn that Cadan also can respect the virtue of
fidelity."

In deep gratitude and amazement the overjoyed
Budiak endeavoured, maimed and tortured as he
was, to cast himself at the feet of his generous
captor ; but as he ceased speaking, the Tartar left

tne CeiJ. i js cnW Oii^itJ xwc«i.bT

The thought of hoine and freedom, combined
with the care of those around him, who fulfilled
to the letter the instructions of their Chief, soon
restored the Castellan to some degree of strength ;
and he no sooner believed himself able to encounter
the fatigue of the undertaking, than he obtained
permission to set forth upon his journey. Every
promise which had been made to him was strictly
fulfilled. A purse of gold ; a richly inlaid sword and
yataghan; and a noble Arabian,, upon which from
the moment when he bestrode it he could in fancy
see the son of his lord mounted for his first fight,
were delivered to him as the parting present of
Cadan ; who, however, refused to receive either his
thanks or his farewell; and thus, without another
sight of that redoubtable leader, he departed from
the scene of his captivity.



78 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

The nature of his wound, and the extreme
exhaustion of his frame, necessarily rendered his
progress tedious and uncertain, while his mind was
constantly tortured with apprehensions for his
master, of whose safety he had no surety until he
should find him at his own hearth.

At length the blessed moment came ; and joyful
was the welcome with which for the second time the
inhabitants of Loewenstein received, as if from the
grave, one whom they had long mourned as lost to
them for ever. He came to them crippled and
wasted, it is true ; but he was again among those
who were to him dearer than limbs or life ; and he
felt himself pressed to the heart of his grateful
master, and greeted by the name of '*^ brother;"
and the happy tears of the Lady Agnes were on his
hand, and the kisses of her children upon his lips,
and all around him was care and congratulation.

When the young Lord Geysa of Loewenstein
went forth for the first time to battle beside his
gallant father, he wore in his girdle a costly
yataghan of Eastern fashion and fabric; and was
lifted into his saddle by the Baron Andrew Budiak,
whose broad lands had been given to him and to



THE CASTELLAN. 79

his heirs for ever by the Lord of Loewenstein ; and
as he withdrew the bridle of liis beautiful xArabian
from the hands of a groom, a stalwart warrior
armed cap-a-pie, but shorn of a leg, rode to his
side, upon whose shield was emblazoned a right
chivalrous coat of arms granted to him with his
title by the Emperor, of which the crest was a lion,
and which bore on the second field a severed leg
encircled by a chain.

It were almost needless to say how brave a line
descended from this bold Baron ; but the national
archives show that in 1809 liis descendants did
groodly service to their country, and perilled life
and limb fearlessly in the service of their Sovereign.



80 TH E H U ]^ G Alt I'A ?f CASTLE.



The narration of the Vice-Count had beguiled many
of his fairest listeners of their tears ; for there are
few things which speak more directly to the heart
of woman than individual heroism. Her natural
shrinking from violence and danger, and that con-
sciousness of her own weakness and dependence
which constitutes in the eyes of most of the opposite
sex her loveliest charm, are the very attributes which
enable her to appreciate and to honour courage in
those to whom she looks for safety and support.

In the tradition of the Vice- Count there was
consequently much to interest the ladies of the
party ; and as even the fat old Baroness had
awakened before the tale was more than half told,
the gallant descendant of Husza could boast as
attentive an auditory as ever encouraged a chronicler.

** T confess myself vanquished ;" smiled the Baron
Pratnayer, when the comments of the party were
exhausted; *'for the tale which we have just heard
proves indeed that truth is sometimes stranger than



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 81

fiction ; while it is equally certain that it is at all
times infinitely more interesting."

*' I have only one objection to offer;" said Palffy ;
" and that is, that hitherto the ladies have played a
very subordinate part in these our reminiscences.
I vote therefore that the next tale which is told,
and which, by-the-by, if of tolerable length will
occupy the remainder of the evening, may be a
love-story. It is a reproach upon our Hungarian
chivalry to have chronicled only episodes of mas-
culine prowess.!^^Q^^Q ^^^ ^^^ „l ^uH^aoo dairiw

•' The word prowess reminds me of an ancestress
of my own;" said the Baron Wesseleny, a tall,
dark, handsome Transylvanian, who was one of the
party ; '' and if I should be fated in my turn to
figure as a domestic historian, I will give you the
whole chronicle of her courtship." ., y^he { Y^B<f=

*' Show your courage, and volunteer the tale ;"
laughed Palffy, who was busily engaged in tangling
the skeins of party-coloured silk with which his
affianced bride was creating mysterious groups upon
the canvas of her embroidery frame ; " Some one
had really better exert himself to prove that the
brave knights of old had fair dames to appreciate

e3



82 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

their valour, and to emulate their virtues ; or our
national character will suffer, and our gallantry be
at a sad discount.'*

" There is assuredly no reason why we should
shrink from mention of our countrywomen ;" said
the host ; " for more beauty does not exist in any
land than in Hungary; and we ought to be satis-
fied with our fate, even amid all its drawbacks,
when we reflect on the compensation which has
thus been made to us. Nor is it alone at our own
hearths that we feel this, for no foreigner fails to
celebrate the loveliness of the Magyar maidens."

*' By St. Stephen !" exclaimed Palffy, seizing a
guitar which lay upon a sofa near him : ^' the wor-
thy Baron is right ; and while Wesseleny collects
his memories, I will sing you a ballad written by a
young English lady who was lately among us, in
honour of the bright eyes of the fair Countess Rosa
Szapary. It was done into Hungarian by a man
whom we all know, and who is destined at no
distant day to take a high place among European
poets; and it fell so smoothly into one of our
national melodies that I have appropriated it ; and
will now give you an opportunity of acknowledging



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 83

that justice has been done to one of the loveliest of
our aristocracy." And^ mthout further preface, he
swept the strings, and commenced his song.

" Lovely lady ! in thine eyes
Dwells the light of paradise ;
And before thy glowing lips
Roses die of an eclipse ;
While upon thy radiant brow
Grace sits throned in living snow.

" 'Mid the mazes of thy hair
Cupids wanton here and there,
And each ringlet seen apart
Is a cage to hold a heart ;
Oh, how very sweet to be
Bless'd with such captivity!

" All the Graces flew to earth
To receive thee at thy birth ;
Fortune shed her mantle o'er thee,
Time laid the proud past befure thee,
And when Beauty claimed thee wholly,
Virtue made the compact holy!"

The most earnest of the party in his thanks to
Nicholas Pal%, if we except the deep eyes of his
mistress, was one of the relatives of the graceful
Countess who had inspired the verses, and who
pledged himself to repay them by a tradition of his
race on the following evening, should the frost still
continue ; after which Wesseleny, having announced



84 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

that his own legend was prepared, forthwith began
its recital. ^

WOOING A BRIDE.

The Thirty Years' War was raging in all its horrors
in Germany; sorrow and suffering were loud on
every side ; and the Swedes, resolute to revenge
the death of their great monarch, were perpetrating
reckless cruelties whose effects endured for years.
The people, abandoned to the fluctuations of con-
flicting ideas and doctrines, and swayed hither and
thither by a power over which they had no con-
trol, and with which it was impossible to contend,
had little connexion with their rulers ; who, absorbed
in the vortex of the war, sometimes conquerors
and sometimes conquered, recognised no right but
might, and no authority but that of brute strength,
and unconquerable will.

j To complete the national dismemberment, Fefc*
dinand II. died, bequeathing to his elder son an
inheritance encroached upon on all sides, and
threatened with still further violence ; nor would it
indeed have been possible for him to have preserved
the empire in this extremity, had not the religious



WOOING A BRIDE. 85

dissension by which Hungary had been so rudely
shaken, been just then appeased ; and a peace with
considerable difficulty concluded jvith the Ottoman

".¦dl-JKJ":-:

Porte.

The fire, however, although it blazed less fiercely,
still smouldered amid its ashes. Some concessions
had been made to the Hungarian Protestants, but
they were still far from being satisfied with their
position ; and claimed certain privileges upon which
they insisted the more strenuously that their bre-
thren in Germany had succeeded in obtaining them.
The greater the progress made by their faith in
Germany the more vehement became their own
discontent ; and it was soon evident to all who were
conversant with the state of the country that a
serious crisis was at hand, i^ifpaoo aaraiiamoa ba^

The Prince George Rakdtzy had, immediately
after the death of Bethlen, induced the States to
elect him to the throne of Transylvania; and al-
though he forbore all participation in the feuds and
factions which were growing up around him, he
looked with satisfaction upon their increasing viru-
lence; for he felt that his own cause must be
strengthened, and his still precarious position as-



86 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

sured, by a state of things which would materially
paralyze the power of the Emperor. He calcu-
lated correctly that should it come to an open
breach between the protestant party and the sove-
reign, his aid would be immediately required ; and
that even if he should fail to enforce the claim of
his predecessor to the crown of Hungary, he
should at least extend his territories, and increase
his power.

With consummate diplomacy he remained per-
fectly passive, not even permitting himself to express
his sentiments; and apparently taking no interest
whatever in the partial outbreaks, by participating
in which he would only have injured the great
design that he had in view ; and which, he well
knew, would require above all things the co-opera-
tion of powerful allies.

The death of the Turkish Sultan Amurath
(1639), with whom negociations had already com-
menced, was productive of considerable delay ; his
brother and successor, Ibrahim, being fully occu-
pied in securing himself on the throne, and thus
having neither time, wish, nor power to undertake
any foreign enterprise : but at length a treaty was



WOOING A BRIDE 87

concluded with this sovereign ; and thus, with the
advancing and hostile Swedes ever menacing fur-
ther violence , and in the midst of a country torn
with faction; troops were lened, ammunition col-
lected, and negociations commenced, not only with
the authorities of several large cities, but also with
the owners of many important castles and for
tresses; and all things prepared for a great and
decisive struggle.

In the year 1644 Rakotzy publicly proclaimed
himself the Champion of the oppressed Protestants,
and the mediator between them and the Emperor ;
declaring at the same time that the office had been
forced upon him, and that he had accepted it only
by universal request ; and concluding his address
by transmitting a proposal of accommodation to
Ferdinand, which was instantly rejected.

Scarcely had the royal negative reached Tran-
sylvania, when the Prince published his declaration
of war ; announcing himself as Protector of the
Faith, and inviting all sincere Protestants to join his
banner, and to unite in a general effort to secure
their rights, or rather to compel them ; while he gave
additional zest to his appeal by immediately making



88 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

a descent into Hungary at the head of twenty-two
thousand men, at a moment when the Emperor,
fully occupied by the distracted state of Germany,
could detach only a small force to oppose him,
under the command of Valentine Nicholas Ester-
hazy, than whom a braver soldier never drew sword ;
but who had the mortification of seeing his oppo-
nents make themselves masters of Tokay, Kashaw,
Eperies, Leutshau, Neusohl, Shemnitz, and several
other fortified towns and castles, without his pos-
sessing the means of impeding their victorious pro-
gress, fettered as he was for want of both men and
ammunition.

The fortress of Muranzi, the most important strong-
hold, not only of the Province of Gomor, but it may
almost be said of the whole of Upper Hungary, was
held by Maria Szetzi, the widow of Stephen Bethlen;
and had opened its gates to the troops of Rakdtzy,
which enabled them to extend themselves in every
direction over the adjacent country, and to attract
to their ranks all the malcontents who might other-
wise have remained neuter, or joined the Imperial
army; with whom, rendered daring by impunity, the)'
spread texrpi; almost to the very gates of Presburg.



WOOING A BRIDE. 89

But ere long the Emperor, witnessing with some
dismay the increasing importance of the insurgent
army, marched a strong reinforcement into Hun-
gary, with whose assistance the Palatine was
enabled to check the further advances of Rakdtzy's
troops; while a second force, under the command
of the Imperial General Buckheim, by which he
was ably supported, tended greatly to change the
aspect of the Prince's fortunes.

Several unsuccessful battles followed each other
in rapid succession ; and their result was to compel
the Transylvanian leader to evacuate an immense
tract of land of which he had recently made him-
self master, and to restore it to the Imperial autho-
rity ; but the strength of the garrisons which he
had thrown into every fortified place along the
whole extent of the contested country, enabled his
party to retain possession of these important points,
despite the efforts made by the Imperialists to
recover them.

Among the rest was Muranzi ; to which, knowing
its excessive importance, the insurgent general
had paid such particular attention, as to garrison*
it with the elite of his army : but he had even more



90 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

confidence in the Chatelaine than in his own pre-
cautionary measures ; nor did he seek for a moment
to dissuade her from her resolve when she informed
him that although she had received himself and
his troops into the fortress, it was in honour and
support of a cause which was also her own ; and
that while life lasted she would never resign the
command of her own castle.

This heroic lady was the elder daughter of
Count George Szetzi, one of the noblest spirits of
his time ; and at the period of our tale she was the
sole representative of the family, and seemed to
have inherited all their brave and lofly qualities.
Of great personal beauty, and strong powers of
mind, she had been from her earliest youth the
theme of wonder and the object of universal admi-
ration. But the voice of flattery and the accents of
passion were alike caviare to the daughter of
Count Szetzi ; and she was only in the first bloom
of youth when she proved the indomitable nature of
the spirit which was within her, by boldly resisting
the commands of her father to become the wife of a
noble whom she despised.

Szetzi, enraged at her opposition — the opposition



WOOING A BRIDE. 91

of a mere girl, to whom he deemed that his lightest
word should have been a law — threatened her with
disinheritance, coupled with his everlasting displea-
sure. " To the first I will patiently submit :" said the
Lady Mary calmly ; '* your wealth is to you what
my hand is to me — it is your own to give or to with-
hold ; and what you have done with the possessions
which you inherited from your ancestors I will do
with my person ; I will maintain even to the death
my right over that which is mine beyond appeal.
For your displeasure — the subject of your keenest
and most painful threat — I will bow beneath it
until you are convinced that it was causeless; and
trust me^ that day will yet come !"

Still more exasperated than before, the Count
commanded his daughter to her chamber, where he
turned the key upon her, and left her to her re-
flections, and the companionship of sundry old worm-
eaten chronicles, which she had disinterred from
among the litter of the armoury, and in which she
found most congenial communion. They were for
the most part rude records of rare passages of arms ;
traditions of pilgrimages to the Holy Land, when
pilgrims went thither sword in hand, and lance in



92 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

rest ; and such like memorials of the olden times
when war was the one great business of the world.
Her imprisonment produced no concession ; for she
loved the leisure which had thus enabled her to
dive deep, and to think long on these, her favourite
studies ; and when at the termination of several
weeks the Count once more summoned her to his
presence, expecting to find her spirit cowed, and to
meet nothing but submission, and saw that far from
such being the case, she was only more firm and
more resolute than at first, he discovered that he
had mistaken the method of securing her obedience :
and forthwith, feigning to repent his harshness, he
addressed to her arguments which appealed to her
heart rather than to her reason. He besought, he
implored, he called her by the gentlest names in
his somewhat scant vocabulary of tenderness;
he talked to her of her dead mother ; of her buried
sisters ; he reminded her that she was his last hope
on earth; and finally he so overwrought his own
nature by the efforts which he made to subdue hers,
that the tears fell on his time-stained cheek ; and at
that sight all the woman gushed from the soul of
his daughter, and flinging herself into his arms



WOOING A BRIDE. 93

she bade him be comforted, for that she would do
all he wished.

A moment after, and repugnance swelled at her
heart until her veins seemed to run ice ; but her
word was pledged, and she would rather have sub-
mitted her right hand to the stroke of a sabre than
forfeited her faith. And she wedded thus — wedded
with reluctance and disgust, a man who had sought
her for her wealth, and whose coward spirit
quailed before the strong mind and the haughty
nature of his scornful bride, whose every glance
was a reproach, and whose every word was a com-
mand ; but her star was propitious, for ere the year
had waned she was a widow ; and the previous
death of her father, who had survived her ill-assorted
marriage only a few months, left her mistress of the
broad lands and numerous strongholds of the
family, with the courage of a hero, and the port of
an Amazon. ^j ^g^ i^

At length free at once to will and to do, the Lady
of Szetzi no longer affected any of the tastes or
occupations of her sex. Strikingly beautiful, she
knew not the meaning of that pitiful vanity which
would have made her the slave of her own loveliness.



94 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Courageous, firm of purpose, and resolute of spirit,
she worshipped all that wore the semblance, or that
awoke the idea of liberty ; and thus to her every
soldier who fought under the banner of Rakotzy
was as a thing enshrined ; and to co-operate in
what she considered to be the mightiest work on
earth, was at once her only effort and her highest
ambition. In this pursuit all other considerations
were overlooked — she forgot her sex, her station,
and her allegiance; or rather she sacrificed them
all without a fear or care for the result, to the
one great cause to which she had devoted her whole
being.

Tall and stately, it seemed as though Nature had
expressly moulded her for the career which she had
chosen ; while the beauty of her countenance gave
an added grace to the pride which sat upon her
brow. Herself a zealous Protestant, the cause of
Rakstzy was doubly hallowed by the uncompro-
mising declaration of his creed with which he had
come forward to erect the standard of independ-
ence ; and she had opened the gates of Muranzi to
him and to his troops, not only as a refuge on their
retreat before the Imperial forces, but also to



WOOING A BRIDE. 95

enable her so to strengthen her garrison that she
might be enabled to resist even unto the death the
aggressions of the enemy.

As she stood before the Prince, clad in complete
armour, with a weapon at her side, and a helmet
g:ay with white and flowing plumes pressed upon
her fine dark hair; her large eye flashing with
resolve, and her firm clear voice assuringr him of
welcome and support ; he almost beheved that
Pallas herself had visited earth to combat in his
cause; nor did her appearance fail to create an
intense sensation among the troops, which was
increased when shortly after their arrival in the
fortress she admonished them to be true to their
cause and to themselves, and informed them that
her scouts had already detected the approach of
the Imperial army.

The tidings were correct, for Esterhazy followed
fast upon the rear of the retreating troops of Ra-
kdtzy ; and when he ascertained that they had taken
refugre in Muranzi he detached a stron^ force to
attack the castle, under the command of the gallant
Francis Wesseleny — the same who was aftenvards,
in 1655, created Palatine — and whose name, con-



96 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

nected as it was with many a deed of prowess, was
considered to be almost a passport to success.

Well aware that this same fortress had a century
before sustained a close and protracted siege with suc-
cess against the celebrated General Nicholas Salm,
Wesseleny was too prudent to venture on an attack
until he had taken every precaution ; and accord-
ingly he commenced operations by surrounding it
on all sides by his troops, strongly guarding its
steep and rocky approaches, and making himself
master of all the peculiarities of its position; as well
as by obtaining through his spies all the informa-
tion which he could collect relatively to the amount
of ammunition and provisions, and the supply of
water possessed by the garrison, which he well
knew to have become so numerous through the
presence of Rakdtzy and his people, as to demand
and exact an immense consumption of each.

All that he could learn upon the subject con-
vinced him that every precaution had been taken,
and that he had to contend not only against nume-
rical force, but also against skill, courage, and
judgment ; and his summons of immediate sur-
render having been met by an answer equally



WOOING A BRIDE. 97

haughty and uncompromising, he could not conceal
his astonishment on finding that it had been dic-
tated by the Chatelaine herself; and that every
individual in the fortress, including even Rakdtzy,
was under her command, and subservient to her
authority.

That she was within the walls he had known
when he marched upon the castle ; but that she
would herself co-operate in its defence, and far less
that she would declare herself its champion, he had
never anticipated for a moment ; and superadded
to his ambition of possessing himself of a strong-
hold before which Nicholas Salm had been worsted,
instantly grew a dread of the ridicule which would
inevitably attach to him thenceforward should he
be thwarted by a woman.

Under the exasperated feelings consequent upon
this possibility — and he would not admit even to
himself that it was more than barely possible — he
immediately commenced the attack ; but the strong
walls and lofty towers of the fortress resisted all the
efforts of his artillery, and the heavy balls re-
bounded as if in sport from the solid masonry,
without effectinsr the shg^htest breach.

VOL. II. F



98 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

More and more annoyed by his position, and the
utter failure of his first efforts, he issued orders for
storming the castle, and gallantly headed the troops
himself. This attempt however, desperate as it
was, availed him no more than its predecessor had
done ; for although his men fought bravely, they
were repulsed with great slaughter, and he himself
narrowly escaped with life.

Thus passed not only days but weeks. On
several occasions Wesseleny obtahied some trifling
advantage, which served to sustain the spirits of his
troops, but it was constantly followed by a more
serious discomfiture ; for not all his skill and pre-
caution were sufficient to counteract the activity and
indomitable daring of his Amazonian adversary.

More than one attempt to win over a portion of
the besieged garrison by bribes and promises, and
several efforts to create mutiny and to induce
desertion, alike failed in their turn ; and Wesseleny,
when he had exhausted all the usual means em-
ployed on such occasions, found himself precisely as
far from having obtained the desired end as on the
day when he first set down before the fortress ; with
the additional mortification of exhausted resources



WOOING A BRIDE. 99

and attenuated Strength. He was in despair! In
vain he taxed alike his memory and his invention,
they were both barren of expedients. In vain he
summoned a council of his officers, and begged
them to assist him with their judgment; some
advised him to attempt impossibilities, and trust to
his hitherto propitious star for success; while the
rest, less adulative but more rational, counselled
him to raise the siege, and carry the support of his
name and arm elsewhere. All admitted the evil,
but none could supply a remedy.

Such was the state of things when suddenly a
report reached Wesseleny, that in consequence of
some unexpected successes, the main body of the
Transylvanian army was again advancing to relieve
their beleaguered comrades ; and at that moment
an idea glanced like lightning across his brain,
which so engrossed his thoughts that in order to
shape it into feasibility he shut himself for several
hours in his tent, having pre\dously given orders
that he should on no pretext be intruded upon.

On his re-appearance, he immediately dispatched
a herald to the Lady of Szetzi, asking safe conduct
to and from her presence for one of his officers, an

f2



100 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

audience, and a short armistice. The request was
at once acceded to, and in a very brief space of
time Wesseleny found himself standing on one of
the ramparts of Muranzi,.face to face with its
haughty mistress. ^Y "^^ '^-^^^f.i^ n*? -

Dazzled by her exceeding loveliness, the Im-
perialist leader used many and energetic arguments
to induce her to surrender, long after he discovered
that he was guilty of a mere waste of words, and
that the spirit of Mary of Szetzi was as immoveable
as her own towers. At length the proud Ch-^te-
laine IcJst patience.

V«By St. Stephen, Sir Knight!" she exclaimed
angrily : '' You squander both my time and your
own, and would do better to spare both. Do
we look here, in our good castle of Muranzi, as
though we feared aught that your leader could do
against it ? Have we played our parts so tamely
that we have given you the right to argue thus ?
By the manes of my father, you are as wordy as a
woman ! Return to Wesseleny, and tell him that
we never will surrender while one stone of the for-
tress rests upon another. And now, away with you
— our conference is ended !"



WOOING A BRIDE. 101

'"^^* Be it SO, madam, since such is your goodwill;"
said the Imperiahst envoy ; " I have then only
further to crave your attention to this missive from
my general, to which he prays that you will cour-
teously vouchsafe an answer at your best leisure."
iif* It shall be done, sir;" said the Lady of Szetzi
drily : and waving her hand somewhat impatiently
for him to withdraw, she turned upon her heel, and
walked away.

Great was the astonishment of the Chatelaine of
Muranzi when, on tearing open the letter, she dis-
covered that it contained an offer of the hand and
heart of the far-famed and redoubted Wesseleny.
" I have heard so much of your beauty" — thus it
ran — " I have seen so much of your courage. You
have awakened in my breast an admiration so in-
tense, and a devotion so sincere, that by becoming
the partner of my name and fortunes you will make
me the happiest of men. Mine is a soldier's woo-
ing ; but to you it will not be unacceptable from its
abruptness, for we have neither of us time to waste
on the fooleries which weaker women love."

The lady walked silently and musingly to her
own chamber, with the open letter in her hand,



102 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

casting her eyes over it occasionally by the way ;
and when she had crossed the threshold, and closed
the heavy door behind her, she withdrew her
helmet, and sat down deep in thought in her large
high-backed velvet chair. " Why, this is wondrous !'*
she at length broke out in the security of her soli-
tude : — '' That he — that Wesseleny — should seek
my hand— my hand ;" and she clenched it hard,
as though she would have driven the mailed fingers
through its palm : '* This hand, which now toys
with nothing gentler than a weapon-hilt ! Why, it is
monstrous ! Rakdtzy's enemy — the Emperor's
minion. Yet no — I may not do him such foul
wrong, even though he be an Imperialist, for no
tongue has ever yet dared to couple the name of
Francis Wesseleny with aught mean or dishonour-
able. Were it not so, I might even deem that this
strange wooing — But 1 wrong myself; He would
not dare — there breathes not the man who dares to
sport with Mary Sz6tzi !"

She paced her room hurriedly for a few moments,
and then resumed her seat.

" What can this mean ? Francis Wesseleny !
Why, there is not a court-dame who would not fard



WOOING A bride;ht 103

herself to crimson, and practise antics by the hour
to win a bow from Francis Wesseleny, or fame hath
lied. And why should he seek me ? I, who had
done with love ere I was yet a girl ; and wedded
but to hate. My foe too ! the doughty leader sent
forth by a luxui'ious and ermined monarch to crush
a growing hope. Fie on me ! I ought to loathe
this man ! And yet — he deems that his is the right
cause — and — who shall say ? for heaven itself seems
to have declared against Rakdtzy. But, pshaw !
Am 1 about to play the woman ? Is this the stuff
that brides are made of?" And with a bitter
smile she glanced at the shining armour by which
she was covered : '' it is unfathomable. I would
that he had not thus disturbed my spirit. I have
sterner work to do ; and foreswore the weakness of
my own sex when I strove to emulate the firmness
of the other. What is love to me ? the love of any
suitor — aye, any — even though that one should be
Francis Wesseleny, whose name has been made a
watchword among women. Xay, nay ; where am
I wandering ? Time passes too : and they are re-
lieving the guard upon the walls — I will return his
bold missive to this audacious Magnate." And



104 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

she began hastily to refold the letter ; and drew
towards a massive escrutoire inlaid richly with
uncut gems, the spoil of some eastern enemy of a
former Szetzi, in order to enclose it in a cover, and
speed it back to the camp of the besieging army ;
but ere she had completed her task, she pillowed
her head upon her hand, and fell into another fit
of deep musing.

At length she roused herself from her abstrac-
tion, and broke into a low laugh ; which, despite
every effort, had more of bitterness than mirth in
its sound ; and seizing on a pen that lay near her,
she traced a few lines, repeating them aloud as
they appeared upon the surface of the paper.
" Wesseleny, if you really desire an answer to the
packet which you have this day caused to be put
into my hands, you must come yourself to seek it.
Did 1 not know you, enemy though you are, to be
a brave man, I should have vouchsafed none. It
may be, however, that the courage by which you
have won your present reputation, is an impulse
rather than a principle, and if so, we shall never
meet in this world ; if it be otherwise, and that my
reply be necessary to you, as you state, you have



IJTWOOING a BRIDE.TfiT 105

only to stand at midnight beneath the north turret
of the castle, where you will see a lamp burning
near a casement, from which a ladder of ropes
shall be suspended to afford you ingress into the
apartment; but you must come alone; and you
shall receive my answer. — Mary of Szetzi."

As her rapid pen paused upon the paper, a deep
unconscious sigh heaved the scarf which covered
the bosom of the beautiful Chatelaine ; and she
proceeded, but slowly and deliberately, to fold and
secure the letter which she had so hastily written :
and she had no sooner added the superscription,
than she involuntarily raised her eyes to a mirror
which hung before her, and swept back her rich
but disordered hair somewhat impatiently, while
her fine brow contracted into a frown.

" He has not yet seen me ;" she murmured, re-
ferring to his letter ; " he tells me that ' he has
heard much of my beauty.' It may be that he will
think lightly of it, should he come. But will he risk
the venture? Aye, will he; for else he were a
coward, and no longer Francis Wesseleny. I re-
member to have heard that the proud Countess
PalfFy — the fairest one of a fair race — has loved this

f3



106 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

maxi— does love him ; and she is young and gentle
— her heart was not withered in her youth — She
never gave herself to a hated bridegroom and a
loveless marriage. And yet he does not wed this
dainty woman, with all her pretty arts and fond
devices ; and he seeks me — I, who am half unsexed
by my proud nature, which spurns control, and will
not own a curb. Naj, by my father's manes, it is
sheer madness !" And again she laughed ; but the
woman-spirit had awoke at last, and the joy of
being beloved was for a time too mighty to be
suppressed.

" And he is said to be so marvellous gallant in his
bearing, and so fair to look upon ;" once more she
mused. " Even George Rakotzy admits that Hun-
gary boasts not a nobler son, and that he moves the
hero that he is ! But I will try him bravely ere I
listen to his suit — for I must surely listen were it
but from courtesy, let me answer as I may ; and if he
fail, why he will be my scorn, and thus his fair face
will wear no charm for me!" And with this
haughty self-pledge the Chatelaine rose ; once more
pressed her helmet upon her brow ; and committing
the letter that she had written to the charge of one of



' '-^WOOING A BRID^.^^ 107

her pages, she bade him speed to the Imperial camp,
and deUver it with all care into the hands of
Wesseleny himself.

It was with very mixed feelings that the Macrnate
perused the expected packet. For a moment a sus-
picion of foul play rose to his mind; but he remem-
bered the bright eyes and proud bearing of the
Lady, and could not persuade himself that she
would stoop to treachery. He re-read the letter;
and the romance of the arrangement pleasing his
fancy, he willingly overlooked its danger; and
instructing the page to inform his Lady that her
bidding should be obeyed, he dismissed him with a
princely present, and w"iihdi*ew into his tent.

Once more alone, Wesseleny revolved every
phase of his position. He was playing for a heavy
stake : he was about to peril, if not actually life, at
least present hberty, in order to secure success ; and
he was moreover thralled by the surpassing loveli-
ness of his enemy.

" She may be false;" he murmured to himself:
'' but if she indeed be so, then is she the fairest fiend
that ever tempted man to his undoing; and I will
dare the venture. I could not brook a bride whose



108 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

humours hinged uppn the atmosphere, and whose
worst terror was a flying feather. We can do
nothing against this fortress by force, and it must be
gained. I have never yet been worsted ; and to be
hunted like a smitten hound back to my kennel
by a woman, is more than I can look upon with
patience ! She may spurn my suit, but she will
scarcely play me false ; and the game is well worth
the stake." And after a moment's reflection, he
desired that the Baron Eckstein might be summoned
to his tent.

The gallant soldier obeyed his bidding on the
instant ; and to him, strictly enjoining secresy,
Wessel^ny divulged his midnight expedition, lest
during his temporary absence any necessity for
action should occur ; or that, in the event of his
non-appearance on the morrow, a clue might be
afforded to the probable place of his detention.

Having carefully detailed his plans and prospects,
and combated the objections of his friend, who
strenuously urged a change of purpose, the General
next made the tour of his out-lying picquets with
his anxious companion, and ascertained that every
sentinel was at his post, and that no event had



I'lWOOlfiG A BRIDE. HI 109

taken place during the day which could induce a
change of measures ; and thus assured, he returned
to his tent, where he pledged Eckstein in a cup of
amber-coloured Tokay ; and having repeated his
wishes and precautions, he ultimately wrung the
hand of his friend; and recommending to him above
all things discretion and secresy, he prepared for
his adventure. ifii em

It has been already hinted that Francis Wes-
seleny was a man of surpassing beauty; but it
remains to be added that at the period of our tale
he was in the very zenith of his attractions, and by
no means unconscious of their extent, for the beau-
ties of the court had for several successive seasons
taught him the welcome secret. It is therefore
scarcely wonderful that on the present occasion,
fraught as it was with the most important results,
not only to himself but to his cause, he should have
endeavoured to enhance their effect by all the
aids of art, and found the labour pleasant ; while
it is certain that the comments of his companion,
when he at length stood before him in all the
splendour of a costume than which none more
chivalric or gorgeous exists in Europe, were by



U6 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

no means distasteful either to his hopes or to his
vanity.

And assuredly no more resplendent knight ever
sought to win entrance into his lady's bower-cham-
ber than Francis Wesseleny, when, with his jewelled
dress closely covered with a large and ample
mantle of dark cloth, lie traversed his own camp,
lesponding in a low and smothered voice to the
challenge of the watchful sentinels ; and abandoned
himself that night to an adventure that for aught
he knew might end in his destruction.

It was pitchy dark : the moon was in her first
quarter; and, unable to contend with the heavy
scud that was drifting rapidly and closely across
the sky, she had apparently hidden herself in very
despair of taking her appropriate station in the
heavens : the deep silence was only broken by the
occasional laughter of the guard, who were assem-
bled about their watch-fires ; and all promised well
for the secresy of his expedition when Wesseleny
left his tent, and made his hasty way towards the
northern turret of the beleaguered castle of Mu-
ranzi.

When he reached the base of the rock on which



WOOING A BRIDE. Ill

the fortress was seated, he at once perceived the
difficuhy of his undertaking; for at the particular
point which had been named to him as that on
which he was to gain admission to the castle, the
rock rose almost perpendicularly to an immense
height, and mocked the human foot ; while the pro-
mised light, which twinkled from a casement in the
turret, looked hke a star in the dark blue horizon.

But VVesseieny would not be thus repulsed. He
saw at once that without aid from within the edi-
fice, all ingress from that spot was impossible ; and
accordingly he closed his eyes for a few seconds
to enable him to distinguish objects more clearly
athwart the darkness, and then set himself 1o dis-
cover what measures had been taken to facilitate his
attempt. He was not long in determining their
extent, for a slight sound enabled him to detect the
presence of some unwonted substance resting against
the steep surface of the rock which swayed in the
wind as it swept by ; and which, on extending his
hand in order to ascertain its nature, he at once
discovered to be the rope-ladder, whose assistance
he had been promised in the trite and inconclusive
billet of the Chatelaine.



112 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

For an instant Wessel^ny paused ; and even his
stout heart quailed for a second, as he could not
disguise from himself that the quivering of one
pulse would suffice to hurl him to destruction. He
looked upward to the small and trembling light,
and then downward to the deep ditch at his feet,
into which the tremour of a nerve must inevitably
plunge him ; and he remembered, in spite of him-
self, that he had received no pledge of safety, no
assurance of good faith, and that he was a mere
adventurer rushing on his own fate.

But ere long he grew ashamed of these mis-
givings; and as he recalled the confidence which
he had placed in Eckstein, and the contemptuous
scorn with which he had rejected his remonstrances,
and listened to his misgivings, he felt that he must
pursue the adventure, end as it might : and accord-
ingly, grasping the slender cords in his hands, and
commending himself and his country to his patron
saint, he boldly placed his foot on the first link of
the ladder, and abandoned himself to his fortunes.

These proved to be sufficiently difficult, for the
height whence the ladder was suspended was so
great, that the Magnate could not steady the frail



WOOING A BRIDE. HT 113

machine even when his whole weight rested on it ;
nor prevent its being the plaything of every gust of
wind which beat against the rock. There were mo-
ments, indeed, when the motion became so violent
and painful as to create a giddiness that compelled
Wesseleny to cling with all his strength to the
cords, lest he should lose his hold, and perish in
the dark abyss beneath him ; nor was it until he
had undergone an hour of intense suffering and
extreme danger, that after clinginor for a few mo-
ments to the frame of the open window in order to
restore his breath, he sufficiently recovered his
strength to vault into the chamber, where he ex-
pected to meet his beautiful but exacting mistress. -
When he had accomplished this feat, however,
he found himself alone in a vast apartment, dimly
lighted by a heavy silver lamp resting upon an
ebony pedestal ; but he had scarcely time to look
around him ere he was violently seized from behind,
his weapons wrenched from his breast, himself flung
to the ground, and coarse threats poured into his ear
that if he offered to resist, his life should be the
forfeit; and while he was yet marvelling in his
bewilderment if he were really awake, he was again



114 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

rudely clasped by strong hands, lifted from the
floor, and thrust into a dark and narrow closet,
evidently used as a prison-cell.

For the first few moments astonishment super-
seded every other feeling in the mind of the be-
trayed noble ; but after a while the recollection of
his own ill-timed rashness, the dishonour which
would accrue from his voluntary abandonment of
his post, and the consequent dispersion and disgrace
of the troops which had been entrusted to him,
rose to his memory, and almost maddened him ;
and perhaps it was fortunate, under the circum-
stances, that the period permitted to him for this
self-reproach was brief, and that his miserable re-
flections were terminated by the appearance of a
tall, sombre, passionless-looking individual, clad in
black, and bearing a dark lantern which only
tended to make the obscurity about him more
dense, and who addressed him in deep and mea-
sured tones, little calculated to soothe his irritation.

" Sir Count ;" said this ill-omened visitor : " I
need not tell you whose prisoner you now are, for
you are in the Castle of Muranzi, and you well
know by whom it is defended. Your reception has



WOOING A BRIDE. 115

been somewhat rough, but your fate is in your own
hands. My noble lady offers you her heart, and
her broad lands and bristling fortresses, if you will
quit the Inoperial service, and become the ally of
Rakdtzy. If not, you can guess the alternative —
you die within the hour ; and your troops left with-
out a leader will fall an easy prey to our brave
garrison. What is your answer?"

" That I scorn alike you and your foul errand ! "
indignantly replied the noble prisoner. " Deeply
as I feel the insult which has been offered to me,
I will never purchase exemption from its conse-
quences by an act of perfidy. My word is sacred;
and such I deemed must be that of the high-born
lady to whom I entrusted my safety. I have been
deceived ; but I am content rather to suffer through
my misplaced confidence than to become false to
my cause. I disclaim the right of your proud
Chatelaine to hold me captive; and I here, as a
true Knight, declare against it."

" It is not a question of right but of might. Sir
Count ;" coldly remarked his unmoved Ustener ;
" nor is the argument that of captivity and freedom,
but of life and death. The Lady of Szetzi is not



116 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

one who loves fine phrases, or who defers to the
law for her decisions : and I am no further in-
structed than to offer you your choice of death
within the hour as the soldier of the Emperor, or
the broad lands and fair hand of the Chatelaine of
Muranzi, on condition of your becoming the cham-
pion of the Liberators. Once more, what is your

¦-) Yifi'-' ¦¦>'tyw ^fiDjiiioieim eiii
'' I have already declared it;'' said the Magnate
firmly : " It is far more easy for Francis Wesseleny
to die than to become a traitor.*'

The tall dark man persisted no further, but
bowing slightly to the prisoner, retired from the
room, and closed the door behind him.

For a long dreary hour, which seemed to him to
have been lengthened into an age, the gallant
prisoner was left to the undisturbed indulgence
of his bitter thoughts. It was cruel thus to
be cut off in the prime of his existence, when
honours and successes were awaiting him, could he
but pursue the fortunes which had been destined
to gild his manhood ; and it was doubly maddening
thus to have fallen a victim to his own good faith
and misplaced confidence. At times he comforted



WOOING A BRIDE. HI Wj

himself with the remembrance that it was far more
glorious to die with honour than to live disgraced,
even although the disgrace should be gilded by
wealth, and marked Vjy pleasure; but even this
reflection could not divest his fate of its sting. The
world was still so bright to him — It held so many who
loved him — But these recrrets availed nothinor ; and
his misfortunes were only embittered by the memory
that they had been brought upon him by one of the
loveliest beings he had ever beheld, and the only
one whom he had ever loved.

"What is Mary of Szetzi to me?" he asked
himself; "save my executioner? — A beautiful fiend
with a light in her dark eye, and a poison in her
soul — VVhy have I played the madman for a fair brow
and a proud smile ? — I will think no more of her !"

But despite this doughty resolution, the mind of
the noble prisoner would persist in dwelling upon
the magnificent memory of the haughty Chatelaine ;
and when the door again fell back, he started as
though he expected to see her once more stand
before him.

She came not, however: it was the same cold
intruder as before ; but this time he evidently did



118 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

not come alone, for the measured tread of armed
men was audible in the gallery beyond the prison-
room. When he had reached the centre of the
narrow floor, the same alternative was once more
offered to Wesseleny, and once more rejected ;
when the space about the captive was instantly filled
with guards ; and a strong light being flung over the
scene by a couple of torches carried by retainers
in the livery of the Lady of Szetzi, the imprisoned
noble was enabled to distinguish in the centre of
the group a dark stern man, armed with a naked
weapon, whose grim garb and peculiar attitude gave
sufficient evidence of his hateful office.

" You are welcome ;'' said Wesseleny fixing his
eyes steadily on the executioner, and speaking as
though he was unconscious of any other presence ;
" I will but say one prayer and withdraw the scarf
from my throat ere I claim your services : and let
it be your boast henceforward, that among the
false-hearted traitors whom you may have sent to
expiate their crime and their dishonour before their
time, you have helped one true man to a forget-
fulness of the foul perfidy of which he was the
victim."



WOOING A BRIDE. 119

A> he ceased speaking he sank upon his knee ;
and burying his face in his spread hands, was
instantly absorbed in prayer. But there was an
eye upon him there of which he never dreamt : and
as he prepared to rise, and had already begun to
remove his throat-scarf, his gaze fell upon the Lady
of Szetzi.

She was no longer clad in armour, but attired in
a lon£^ and ample mourning robe of velvet, clasped
from the throat to the feet with gems of almost
priceless value. '^ Wesseleny," she said tenderly ;
" you have conquered ! It has cost me much to
bend my proud spirit to any vassalage, ev^en that of
a husband whom I honoured ; and you must for-
give me if I resolved to have full assurance that he
was worthy of that honour, ere I perilled all my
future happiness. You have come nobly forth from
a sharp trial ; and you are worthy of the sacrifice
even of my freedom. A brave man only would
have dared to ask my hand, or have hoped to win
it : you have done both, and from this moment I
am yours. The cause for which you would have
endured death must be the right one ; and Muranzi
is henceforward an Imperial fortress."



120 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

The amazement of Wesseleny was extreme. He
looked from the beautiful widow to the armed men
by whom she was surrounded, and again upon the
radiant loveliness by which his heart had been taken
captive even in a less seemly garb; and every
lingering remain of displeasure and indignation
vanished at once, as he bent his knee before the
queenly beauty who addressed him, and pressed
his lips to her fair hand.

*' And the Prince Rakotzy?" he at length mur-
mured, as the recollection of all which this unlooked-
for reconciliation would involve swept across his
mind.

*^ Must pass the walls unquestioned and un fol-
lowed at midnight ;" replied the Lady ; " at the
head of all his troops. We must not wade to the
altar through blood ; nor must my secession from
his cause involve the destruction of the Patriot-
Prince. His friends are already on the march, and
he will be enabled to join them in a ^evf hours. He
must be allowed free passage through your camp."

*' He shall ;" said Wesseleny; " I was sent hither
simply with instructions to subdue the fortress of
Muranzi."



_ WOOING A BRIDE. 121

" And you have done it ;" smiled Mary of Szdtzi ;
'' tlie garrison has surrendered at discretion ; and
now let us hence, my lord, to a more seemly apart-
ment. For to-day you must be content to re-
main partially a prisoner, lest some unlucky contact
should breed a feud. To-morrow the fortress will
be freed of all who may be displeasing to you.
Will you submit to this temporary captivity ?"

"I am content so to be a prisoner for ever;"
replied Wesseleny, as he took the proffered hand
of the lady to lead her forth.

And, strange to say, the marriage proved a
happy one.



VOL. II.



122 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.



CHAPTER IV.

" You have played us false, Wessel^ny ;" exclaimed
PalfFy ; ^' I appeal to the ladies here present if you
have not played us false ? Was such a love-tale
ever heard ? or do you mean us to take your Ama-
zonian ancestress, stout head and bold heart though
she had, as a sample of our Hungarian beauties ?
Why she was enough to alarm a whole horde of
Tartars : and it required nothing less than a Wes-
seleny to run the risk of what might result from
such a bridal ! Fancy yourself wooing a bride
cased in chain armour, and kissing a hand bristling
with a gauntlet!"

'^ Or paying compliments under the protection
of a body-guard ;" said Pratnayer : " I must sup-
port the case against you, Baron ; for truly in no
country have I ever found women less disposed to
appeal to anything sterner or less agreeable than
their own attractions; and I sincerely trust that
some one may be here among us ready to revenge
the sex.'*



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 123

"Were it not that it would be unfair;" said the
host ;" I would ask you to take the ofl&ce upon
yourself."

^'And most gladly would I do so;" was the
reply; ^'did I not feel that there are several of my
friends now present who are much more competent to
do it effectively. Here is M. Karolyi for instance."

''The cause is so agreeable that I dare not
refuse to further it;" said the individual who
had been indicated; *'and as it will be easy 1o
find among the records of the past in a land like
ours, a legend of beauty and of truth, I need not
detain you a moment even for the purpose of selec-
tion ; for I do not think that I can find one more
suited to my purpose than that of Katherine of
Budethin."

" I know the castle of Budethin well;" observed
the host ; *' and was already aware that there was
a remarkable tradition attached to that portion of
it which yet remains a ruin, although I never yet
chanced to learn its purport. Count Stephen Csaky
has indeed, in the instance of that fortress, seemed
to defy even time itself."

" It was while sojourning with him in his magni-

G 2



124 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

ficent halls ;" remarked Karolyi ; " that I became
acquainted with the story which I am now about to
tell : and when you have heard it you will have
little difficulty in believing that it made so deep
an impression on my fancy as to render it an easy
task to recal all its details, from its having been
told to me upon the spot where I had ocular testi-
monials of its truth. But I will not delay you
longer by my comments, than to add that the
legend will lose much of its charm to my own
listeners, from the fact that coming from my lips
it will be divested of the grace which it gained from
those of the beautiful girl to whom I am myself
indebted for it. She was a young peasant, the
daughter of a Kissutzan farmer, who claims descent
from Irla, the favourite waiting-woman of my fair
and ill-fated heroine; and be her parentage what
it may, assuredly one of the most lovely beings
which this or any other land can boast. The
Count Csaky has placed her about the person of
his daughter; but it is to be hoped that both
mistress and maid will be spared the miseries and
sufferings of their fair ancestresses."

« We will permit no more anticipatory com-



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 125

ments;" said Palffy gaily; ''or your story will
become as unexciting as the novels which are read
by a grand- aunt of my own, who always commences
by the last chapter, in order to feel at her ease
throughout the perusal of the work, by her previous
knowledge of its catastrophe."

'^ I have indeed been very impolitic, and I
deserve the rebuke;" replied Karolyi; "but so
many memories crowded upon me at the moment,
with a very pretty girl as the corner-stone on which
to build them up, that I did not reflect how much
my credit as a tale-teller would be likely to suffer
from my reminiscences as a guest. I will offend
no more, however; but forthwith endeavour to
enlist your sympathies in the fate of

KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN.

The beautiful river Waag, one of the most capri-
cious and picturesque streams that ever traversed an
incomparable country, here flowing through a valley
dense with vegetation, and laughing in the light;
there gliding smoothly under the tall shadows of a
far-spreading and majestic forest ; and anon forcing
its boiling and boisterous passage athwart rocky



126 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

ravines, bald with the storms and struggles of
centuries; rushes rapidly and wildly through the
northern portion of the county of Trenschin,
towards the frontier; flashes and foams round the
base of the mountain through which a road is cut
to the little town of Sillein, distant about a mile ;
and thence rolls on through a portion of the chain,
forcing its way, and in some places digging it, by
the violence of its current, amid heights covered
with eternal snows, or rocks worn bare by the tem-
pests and rains which continually assail them.

At a right angle, at the entrance of the plain,
the rapid Kissutza falls into this noble river; and
however insignificant the minor stream may appear
during the droughts of summer, when travellers
pass it with impunity both mounted and in car-
riages, the Waag no sooner rises, and seems to
threaten it with annihilation amid its own more
mighty waters, than it instantly asserts its existence,
and resists the encroachments of its more powerful
neighbour, by receiving into its bosom all the tri-
butary torrents from the mountain ; and then rush-
ing down boiling, broiling, and foaming, into its
parent stream; which it swells to such a height



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 127

that its power is recognised in the vicinity, by the
fact that the valley near which it pours itself into
the bed of the Waag is called the Valley of
Kissutza.

The Kissutzans are poor, being wholly dependent
for their subsistence on the sale of the timber of
their vicinity ; w^hich, although of fine quality and in
great quantity, requires difficult and distant trans-
port to find an advantageous market. Their
costume is a, joppa, or long gown of Halena cloth,
made of the wool of black sheep. They are a
remarkably fine race; handsome, muscular, of
noble stature, and inured to fatigue; in short, true
mountaineers, to whom the heavens ever supply a
sufficient canopy, and the greensward or the forest
a fitting resting-place.

It is with extreme exertion and at great risk that
these hardy sons of the mountain force their deeply-
laden rafts from the impetuous Kissutza, swollen and
stormy from the action of the frothy torrents, on to
the comparatively peaceful current of the Waag;
but their endurance of fatigue, patiently and hope-
fully borne, is one of the characteristics of their race ;
and from generation to generation, son succeeds to



128 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

father, as though no other avocation could engross
the energies of the hardy Kissutzans.

Near the entrance of the valley stand two castles
flanking the road to Poland and Silesia, and con-
necting the lovely country through which they pass
with such feudal memories of the olden time, as to
make it a landmark for the curious sympathies of the
present. This road, leaving the ribs of the moun-
tain, through which it may fairly be said to have
been hewn, when it reaches the valley becomes
broader and more commodious, as though it had
expanded under the genial influence of a bright
unobscured sky and a glowing soil, to lure the
traveller onward, with a fair promise to be too soon
broken ; for when near the haunted Castle of Hrisco
(the ruined pile over which a stony monk keeps
guard, and of whose foul fate the peasant tells in
trembling at his winter's hearth), it again leads the
pilgrim over the rugged passes of the Oblazow
mountain, amid whose fastnesses a struggle once
took place between love and despair, in which
'twere hard to say who was the victor.

Scarcely a hundred yards from the main road,
where it traverses a bridge in approaching Sillein,



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 129

on the opposite bank of the Waag stands the
Castle of Budethin. Lording it over the plain, it
seems to make even the two rivers tributary to its
greatness, for they form a junction beneath its walls
at right angles, surrounding it on two sides ; while
on the third it was formerly protected by a deep
ditch many feet in width, and constantly tilled
with water; so that this strong fortress might be
said to occupy an island, whence its tall tow^ers and
strong buttresses sent forth their stern message of
menace and defiance.

Immediately opposite to the castle of Budethin,
a bald, abrupt, and lofty mountain intercepts the
western view, and closes the gorge which gives en-
trance into the valley. This picturesque locality
is well suited to the frowning fortress ; nor can the
traveller who looks upon it fail to feel that it is a
hnk in the strong, strange, and mysterious chain
wliich binds the present with the past. The spectres
of buried centuries seem to stalk along those ruined
ramparts, and to look forth from those lofty towers,
upon a bare and precipitous height, which, rising
in the direction of Tyrnau, is known as the Lion's
Rock ; and upon which stands the wondrous castle

G 3



130 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

of the Fakusits, the boldest and most extraordinary
edifice in the country.

From a gigantic mountain stretching to the
right and left, and forming a portion of the great
chain of the Carpathians, rises an abrupt mass of
rock upon which the castle is seated. The
building is composed of three several divisions,
two of which are curiously involved with the
irregularities of its rugged and capricious surface ;
while the third seems scarcely to cling to its
foundations upon the declivity ; but unequal as
they are, rears its bold towers and bristling walls,
freely and boldly, to the height of those of which it
forms a part.

The rock is composed of lime stone, and the
material of which the castle is built differs so little
in tint, that from the plain it is impossible to dis-
tinguish the exact outline of the edifice.

The position of the two fortresses is thus as
peculiar as it is picturesque; and the conviction
fastens at once upon the stranger who looks on
them, that they must have been in feudal times
one continual feast, or one perpetual feud ; and in
sooth they are connected by a tale which, in our



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN, 131

less troublous times, may well secure to both a
place in our remembrance.

At the period to which we revert, the castle of
Budethin was the principal stronghold of the power-
ful family of Szuniogh, who held uncontrolled
dominion over the whole neighbourhood ; and who
possessed enormous influence, not only from their
wealth, but from the fact that the great and acknow-
ledged services of several of the name, had secured
to them immunities which greatly increased their
local as well as national consequence. The head
of the family was the Count Caspar ; a gloomy
misanthrope, who was content to live on the memory
of the past, and the power of the present, without
one care for the future; and who had rendered
Budethin as solitary and deserted as though its
lord had been an outcast from society, unknown
alike to honour and to his sovereign.

Throughout the reign of the two Ferdinands, he
never swerved from his cold and selfish system ; and
no rein was drawn before the gate of Budethin
when the rider had strength to pass on his way un-
scathed. No hand beat upon the gate, no lips
pressed the horn at the portal, save those of some



132 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

wayfarer who feared to dare the mountain-pass
without rest and *******ment; and yet all were
ready to admit that the lord of the fortress was
strictly and even severely just, and that they had
nothing to fear from his equity ; but they never-
theless shrunk from his impetuous self-will, and
that impatience of restraint which led him to acts
of unnecessary violence and outrage, at which his
own better nature afterwards, and too late, taught
him to revolt.

Restless by nature, and brave by temperament,
he frequently left the fortress at the head of his
followers, and sallied forth against the Turks ; with
whom he came into perpetual contact both as Lord
of the caslle of Szendro, and Deputy-Lieutenant
of the county of Neograd. But even when both
his head and arm were thus occupied, he lost none
of his authority at home, for all his dependants so
well understood his nature, that during his absence
his memory haunted every hall throughout the for-
tress like a shadow ; and no one dared to trans-
gress, by word or deed, what he knew to be the
will and pleasure of his despotic Suzerain.

The Count Caspar had an only child, a daughter,



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 133

in whom was centred all the pride and delight of
her father's heart ; while by her mother the Lady
Susanna Banffy, she was idolized as the only object
upon which she could lavish her tenderness, and
feel sure of a return. She was very beautiful, and
submissive, and light-hearted ; loving nature as her
fairest playfellow; and like the wood-anemone,
paying back in harmony every touch of the breath
of kindness. The castle was to her a world, for
she knew none other ; no eye was permitted to rest
on her save those of her father's retainers^ to whom
she was as " some bright particular star," above
their hope, if not their worship ; and thus she grew
to girlhood without a fear, a care, or a misgiving
of that future which was for her to be so fraught
with fate ; while the will of her father was a law
beyond which she dreamed not that there could
be an appeal.

No smile ever visited her mother's lips save that
which her own love called there ; and she no sooner
learnt that sad secret than her tenderness and care
redoubled ; and the Lady Susanna at times forgot,
in the endearments of her lovely child, the cold
blank years of wedded disappointment which she



134 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

had passed with the stern Lord of Budethiii, to
whom she had never seemed more than a vassal
bound to obey his every behest ; and if for a while
the proud and ancient blood of the Banffys revolted
at such unnatural thraldom, the day at length came
when no command, however arbitrary or unreason-
able, could quicken a single pulse ; and the Lady
Susanna moved through the lordly halls of Budethin
like one to whom they were neither a home nor a
hope.

There is a deep spring in the heart of woman,
and its waters are pure and warm as the mystic
streams which bring healing from the mysterious
core of the eastern mountains. It asks only to be
permitted to gush forth, and to pour its healthful
current over all it loves! But, alas! it may be
dried up and turned aside by cold restraints and
rude impediments ; the soft wave may exhaust
itself upon the rock from which it should well out,
and leap rejoicing into the light ; and leaving there
the trace of what it might have been, become lost
for ever, absorbed by the stony basin which it
should so joyously have overflowed.

Thus was it with the Lady of Budethin. In her



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 135

youth she had dreamt of a community of tastes, of
interests, and of affections ; but she had wedded
one, who in seeking her, had sought only to per-
petuate his own proud race ; and to do so through
the medium of a bride of blood as ancient as his
own. He had found a fitting opportunity for both
in the fair and weahhy daughter of the haughty
Barons of Banffy ; but she had borne him no son ;
and superadded to his original indifference, came
the disappointment of his hopes and his ambition,
which destroyed the last link that had for a time
bound him to her affections.

The Count Caspar devotedly loved his daughter ;
but even when the golden ringlets of the Lady
Katherine were streaming over his bosom, and her
sweet lips were pressed to his, he remembered that
she would take another name ; and, perhaps, be-
come the mother of sons who would perpetuate
another race ; and the memory was wormwood to
him ; and thus, while he could not visit his displea-
sure on the fair creature who nestled so lovingly in
his bosom, his coldness towards her mother in-
creased until it almost deepened into aversion.

Then, indeed, it was that the Lady Susanna



136 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

became conscious of the blessing of such a child ;
for when the harshness of the Count Caspar had
crushed her mother to the earth, the gentle tender-
ness of the devoted girl once more healed . the
wounded spirit, and bade it bear up, and hope.

Sometimes, after a temporary absence, the Noble
would call his daughter to him, and while feasting
on her sweet and gentle welcome, question her of
her pursuits and amusements while he had been far
distant; and those were golden moments to the
happy Katherine, who never failed to trace all her
enjoyment to her heart-bowed mother. She would
detail each little ailment, and show how the care-
ful and untiring love of the Lady Susanna had
shortened the hours of suffering ; recapitulate every
innocent or useful employment, and prove how the
one had been enhanced, and the other rendered
effective, by the same wakeful and holy influence ;
and there were times when her anxious tales, ren-
dered graphic by a child's devotedness, awoke a
smile upon her father's lips, and that the smile was
turned towards her mother — brief was it ever, but
it was a smile — and on such nights Katherine
pressed her pillow with a gladdened heart, and



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 137

dreamed such dreams as angels may be thought to
have, sure that their waking will reflect them back.

Such was the Hfe of the Count Caspar's daughter ;
and as he never breathed her name beyond the walls
of the fortress, he hugged himself in the hope that
her very existence would remain unguessed at, until
he should place her in the arms of the bridegroom
whom he might consider to be worthy of her; but
in this, at least, the indomitable will of the haughty
chieftain availed him nothing ; for whispers of the
extreme loveliness of the wealthy heiress got bruited
abroad ; and numerous were the noble youths who
vowed to themselves the conquest of the Lady
Katherine.

Foremost among these enthusiastic suitors was
the Count Francis Forgats ; the representative and
hope of a family whose proud name is involved in
all that is brave and chivalrous in Hungarian his-
tory. Scarcely more than twenty years of age,
gallant, handsome, and for the time in which he
lived unusually accomplished; beloved by his friends,
feared by his enemies, and appreciated by both, it
seemed as though fate could not have designed a more
fitting bridegroom for the fair heiress of Budethin.



138 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

For a time he loved the maiden only from report,
and his imagination was taken captive by self-
created visions of the rose which bloomed amid the
gloomy walls of Budethin ; but, ere long, impelled
by a curiosity which led him to dare any venture
in order to obtain a momentary glimpse of his mys-
terious mistress, he contrived by means of gold and
courage to accomplish his object ; and not only
looked upon the beautiful girl until his eyes ached
with excess of light, but eventually had the delight
of seeing her own wondering but not displeased
gaze fasten upon himself, with more of enquiry
than either fear or anger in its expression.

When Forgats first saw the Lady Katherine, she
was tending her flowers in a sunny nook, formed by
the heavy buttresses on the southern side of the
castle walls. She was kneeling beside a knot of
those dark crimson carnations whose richly spiced
perfume gives to the inhabitants of Europe their
best idea of the scented gales of Araby ; and draw-
ing them together into a cluster, that they might
have the support of some slight willowy twigs
which she was planting in the soil about their roots.
Her large beaver hat, with its long and snowy fea-



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 139

thers, lay on the path beside her ; and her bright
and beautiful face was partially shaded by a cloud
of glossy ringlets as black as night. Tn figure she
was tall and shght, but exquisitely moulded ; and
as pliant as the flexile twigs with which she was
engaged. Her eyes were large, and her eyebrows
shghtly and finely pencilled ; but the great charm
of her lovely countenance existed in her mouth,
whose lips of the colour of crushed rosebuds were
arched as those of a Grecian statue. Her tiny
hands seemed only made to toy with flowers, they
were so white and so diminutive ; and over all this
beauty there was flung the spell of innocent hap-
piness, which gave grace to every gesture and to
every glance.

As she toiled in her pretty playfulness at the
graceful task, she carolled out in a silvery voice
which seemed to float upon the glad air, a wild and
plaintive ballad, whose burthen was the complaint
of a noble Magyar maiden held captive by the
Turks ; and as her accents rose and fell, the heart of
Forgats beat high, and he mar\'elled if the poor
prisoner could have been half as beautiful as the fair
creature who was now giving sweetness to her sorrows.



140 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Suddenly she shook back the long ringlets from
her cheeks and brow^ and looked up with a smile
upon her lips, as if to greet the sunshine which was
resting so lovingly upon her; and as she did so
she encountered the admiring and passionate gaze
of the handsome young Count. Her eyes instinc-
tively fell beneath the look of his ; but even upon
the path chequered with light and shadow, she
seemed to see that bright and noble countenance.
A deep blush rose to her temples, and a strange
flutter made her heart dance within her ; when
hastily sweeping her hand across her eyes she once
more looked up, as if to assure herself that she had
really not been cheated by a fancy.

Who shall say what bright visions passed across
the spirit of the maiden, as she became assured of
the reality of the unexpected apparition ? Or who
shall venture to decide wherefore, after having thus
satisfied herself of the fact, she hastily retreated
into the castle ? Might it not be the first timid
shrinking of unconscious passion, which yearned to
indulge itself in the delicious dreams of solitude?
In sooth it seemed to be even so : for when the
Lady Katherine, having hurriedly traversed the



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 141

lonor galleries which led to her apartments, at
length reached her chamber, she at once dismissed
her favourite attendant Irla; and having closed the
door carefully after her, flung herself do^Mi upon
the oriental divan which occupied an angle of the
room, and burying her beautiful face amid the
luxurious cushions, as though there had been busy
eyes about her to note alike the blush and the
smile by which it was lighted up into still brighter
loveliness, abandoned herself to a dreamlike and
vague feeling of overwhelming happiness, to which
she had hitherto been a stranger.

Until that eventful day Katherine of Budethin
had never looked upon any face likely to be more
dear to her than that of her father: their few
guests at the mid-day banquet were his contem-
poraries and brothers in arms; and the Castellan
was old and gray ; and thus, when her eye fell
upon Forgats, she at once felt, although she could
not have put the feeling into words, that she had
looked upon her fate !

Oh ! that first, beautiful, uncalculating, unselfish
sentiment of love — how pure, how holy is it in the
heart of woman ! Her spirit may become seared



142 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

by time and trial — her suspicions may be aroused —
her doubts awakened, by years, and sorrows, and
those bitter tears which are wrung forth with
an effort that would have been cheaply spared to
the victim at the price of the pouring out of her
life's blood ; but nothing can rob her of the me-
mory of that first, transient, and elysian dream,
w^orth in itself the whole term of an embittered,
chilly, and waking existence.

The Lady Katherine was now dreaming this
glorious dream — walking through an earthly para-
dise of her own creation — and never giving a thought
to the serpent which might, even in the same mo-
ment, be trailing its poisonous length under the
self-created roses of her path.

What a beautiful belief is that of the Orientals,
that spiders extract their venom from roses ! for
how many a human being has been ruined by that
which seemed for the moment to be fairer and
brighter than all around ?

Alas, for the Lady Katherine !

The young Count Forgats, on his side, departed
from the castle with the same secresy as he had
entered it ; but with far different feelings. Hitherto



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 143

his admiration of beauty had been Hke that of the
butterfly, which flutters over whole beds of blos-
soms, sweeping each with its painted wing, but
resting nowhere ; every fair face had pleased him
for a moment, and in the next been forgotten ; but
the vision of the Count Caspar's daughter was
graven on his heart. She was so young, so grace-
ful, and so artless ; and he knew (and this to a
man of his fastidious taste was perhaps her best
attraction), that no eye save his own had yet
looked love into hers. He vowed to himself that
he would win her, if gold, or courage, or devotion
could weigh with her proud father.

But previously the young Magnate resolved to
assure himself that his addresses would be accept-
able to the maiden, for he was not one to receive a
reluctant bride at the hand of a stern parent. It
must be confessed, however, that he did not feel any
very serious misgivings of the success of his suit,
should it be brought to depend on the inclinations
of the fair Katherine ; for he had read her eye as it
met his own, and assuredly he had detected no
shade of displeasure in its expression.

The three powerful influences of love, wealth.



144 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

and daring, will individually do much in any
emergency, but collectively they are irresistible to
all the subordinate agents in an undertaking like
that of the Count Forgets ; and thus he found
little difficulty in procuring an interview with the
lady of his thoughts.

Totally unconscious that any blame could attach
to either from their meeting ; and delighted to see
and to converse with the handsome cavalier, who
had never been absent from her thoughts since she
first beheld him from her rampart- garden^ the
maiden did not even chide his intrusion ; and when
he told her that it was only to assure himself of her
favour that he had stolen secretly into the castle ;
and that no sooner should he have induced her to
return the affection which was now the charm and
hope of his existence than he would boldly declare
his love, and urge his suit with her noble father;
than she resigned herself willingly at once to his
arguments, and consented to meet him whenever it
could be effected with safety to their secret.

And thus a week seldom passed away of which
many hours were not spent by the lovers side by
side, in that pure and trustful communion which is



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 145

the best earnest of sincere affection ; and the more
Forgats became familiar with the gentle and lovingr
nature, and the simple and truthful beauty of
Katherine's character, the more he acknowledged
to himself that without her, life would hereafter be
for him a cheerless and a dreary blank ; while to
her his presence and his affection became ere long
so necessary, that when she heard that it was possi-
ble her father might refuse his sanction to their
union, although the lover admitted that he had
little fear that such would be the case, as the
ambition of the Count Caspar for his daughter,
lovely as she was, could scarcely over-vault the
proud house of Forgats ; still even the mere possi-
bihty of such a misery so terrified the maiden that
she urged delay whenever the subject was started
by her impatient suitor ; and besought him to rest
satisfied, though it should be but for a brief while
longer, with the tranquil happiness of which they
were then possessed; and Forgats reluctantly
yielded day after day to her sweet arguments ; for
how could he oppose the trusting creature that he
loved !

At length Katherine herself, feeling how dear her

VOL. II. H



146 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

lover had become to her young heart, and trembling
as she remembered that her father's anger might
rouse him to opposition should he discover her
acquaintance with a stranger ; as well as impelled
by that yearning which an affectionate and frank
nature ever feels to confide in those it loves ; deter-
mined to pour forth her secret on the bosom of her
niother ; and it was in the sweet sad gloaming of a
day in which Forgats had urged her even more
strenuously than his wont, to allow him to ask her of
her father, that she resolved to make the mighty
effort. : n^

The Lady of Budethin was seated near an open
window, with a small table inlaid with ebony and
sandal-wood before her, on which lay open an
illuminated missal bound in velvet, and clasped
with silver. She was a tall and stately matron,
closely draped in an ample robe of black, w^hose
rich and heavy folds fell in masses about her ; her
hair, which was prematurely gray, was folded like
a band of silver beneath her black hood ; her fea-
tures were strikingly fine; but there was a withered
look about her, a dimness in her large eye, and a
peculiar sadness in her smile, which told that time



KATHERIN'E OF BUDETHIN. 147

had had less part in her decay than sorrow ; that
deep and hopeless sorrow fed by its own silence, for
which the world has little sympathy, and against
which the victim disdains to strugrale.

As her daughter entered the room, the Lady of
Budethin deposited between the pages of the missal
a large rosary of ivory ; and drawing up her feet,
which were small and beautifully moulded, upon
the prayer-cushion on which she had evidently
been recently kneeling, she welcomed her with one
of her fond sad smiles, and flinging her arms about
her neck, drew her tenderly to her bosom.

" My own fair child !" she murmured softly.

" Mother ! dear mother !" whispered the maiden
in response ; and then, withdrawing from the clasp
of the lady, and sinking down upon the cushion at
her feet, she buried her face upon her knees, and
poured forth all her secret.

The Chatelaine sat aghast, and a cold dew
gathered upon her forehead as she listened. When
the sweet voice half choked with sobs, and half gay
with hope, ceased to vibrate on her ear, she swept her
fingers across her brow, as if to assure herself that she
did not dream ; and then layinof her hand upon the

h2



148 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

maiden's head, she gasped out painfully :•' Alas !
my child ; are we to be a doomed and blighted race ?
Tell me not that you love him, for you will never
be the wife of Francis Forgats !"

Katherine sprang to her feet; '' How say you,
mother ? Never be his wife ? Then hear me

swear "

31 " Katherine — my child — forbear ;" interposed
the Lady ; " You know not what you do. Alas !
you guess not what you have already done. Ill-
fated girl ! Are you not the daughter of Caspar
Szuniogh? And do you hope to brave his will?

Look upon me " And she rose from her seatj

and drew up her stately figure to its full height.
*' To-day I am gray and withered, wasted alike in
body and in spirit, but I was not always thus.
Katherine, the Lady Susanna Banffy, the beauty
and the heiress, lacked not suitors. The great the
wealthy, and the brave, were there to contend for
my hand ; and my proud woman- heart rejected
each in turn, until I saw your father. Forgive me,
my poor child, if I dare say even to you that he
was my evil genius. He came to my father's halls
with no design to wed his daughter. It was on his



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 149

return from an expedition against the Infidels that
he claimed our hospitality ; and superadded to
the welcome which he must ever have received as a
fellow -noble^ he met that also which was due to a
brave man who had just achieved a fresh triumph
for his country. I was then in the full bloom of my
maiden beauty : poets sang my praises, and lovers
looked their admiration of my charms. I trod the
hulls of my father s Ccistle of Lossonta, as though my
feet must spurn a lowlier path ; and expected to
find in all who approached me, new lovers and
new friends. It was a strange state of existence,
Katherine ; and when I look back upon it my head
grows dizzy, and I feel like one who dreams — But
you do not heed me, love."

'' Oh say not so, sweet mother," faltered out
the fair girl, who had again sunk down upon the
cushion with a pale cheek and a trembhng heart ;
'* I have not lost a word; hitherto you have never
spoken to me of yourself — your hidden griefs, your
voluntary solitude."

" Nor should I do it now ;" said the Lady mourn-
fully ; '' were it not that I would fain preserve you
from a fate as dreary as my own. You are young,



150 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Katherine, very young ; you have long years before
you ; and oh, life is a weary waste when it has
neither hope nor joy to gild it ! And broken hearts
are the mere creations of poets and romancers —
they are indeed few whom sorrow kills ere they
have borne it long. I was telling you that your
father came to my happy home : he came honoured
and welcome, but he spared no thought to me. He
was cold, haughty, and reserved, — excited only by
tales of chivalry and conquest ; and apparently in-
sensible to everything save his reputation as k
soldier: Various circumstances detained him at
Lossonta; and although, had his stay been more
brief, ^r tnight have been careless of his con-
temptuous neglect, as weeks went by I became
piqued at his indifference. He was the first noble
who had come within the influence of my attractions,
and failed to own their power ; nor did it make me
the less ambitious to attract his notice when I heard
that he never yet had paid his court to any of my
sex. In short, Katherine, his extraordinary cold-
ness commenced by wounding my vanity; and
having excited alike my surprise and my curiosity,
finished by rousing my heart. The voice of adu-



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 151

lation and entreaty became hateful to me; my
step grew less assured, my glance less disdainful ;
and to escape the importunity of my persevering
suitors I used to take refuge in my own apartments,
and there dream of the haughty Lord of Budethin.
It must have been destiny, for to no one would I
entrust my cherished secret; and thus my own
weak fondness could have had no share in the
change which suddenly came over the Count Cas-
par; but one day, when I had heard that he was
to depart upon the morrow, and that I was seated
in my chamber indulging in solitude the grief with
which I was overwhelmed by the intelligence, one
of my women came to summon me to the pre-
sence of my father. You may conceive with what
astonishment, on my entrance into his private apart-
ment with swollen eyes and disordered hair, (for I
had been told to hasten without delay to receive his
bidding, and had consequently no opportunity of
effacing the traces of my recent disorder I saw
standing beside him the Count Caspar Szuniogh.
For a moment my step faltered, and my cheek
burnt; but the Count, as I entered, extended his
hand, and assisted me to a seat; whence I listened



152 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

with only half- recovered composure to the tidings
of my father. No, Katherine, never — through
years of disappointment and despair, through a
life of coldness and neglect — have I forgotten the
interview of that day. T was told that the proud
Lord of Budethin loved me — that the cold and
haughty Chief of Szendro sought me for his wife ;
and so long had my vanity been piqued, my curi-
osity excited, and my heart enlisted in the cause,
that I swooned away as the announcement fell upon
my ears. This strange emotion was attributed by
both my father and my lover to aversion to the
destiny which they had designed for me ; and when
I recovered consciousness, I found myself supported
in the arms of my affrighted parent, who loved me
as his own soul ; and my hands clasped in both
those of the hitherto cold Count Caspar. BanfFy
hailed my returning senses with declarations that
he left my fate in my own hands; and your father
with vows that without me life would thenceforward
be a burthen, which he should struggle to shake
off. Oh, Katherine, can you doubt how this scene
ended? Can you require to be told that I was
weak enough to avow my wild and girlish passion ?



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 153

I became the CouQt Caspar's wife — and since that
hour "

" Mother ! dear mother !" sobbed the maiden.

** More words were needless, my fair girl ;" said
the Lady of Budethin, whose eye was undimmed
by moisture, and whose cheeks burnt with a fever
which would have scorched up all tears ere they
could have been shed; " I yet live, and you are my
child. But it is yourself that I would warn by my
recital. Look into your own heart, and tell me
that it is not yet too late for you to obey your
father's will without repining, should he have already
decided on your destiny ; for, alas ! I fear "

'' ^Mother, it is too late ;" broke in Katherine
with a flashing eye; '* I must be the wife of
Francis Forgdts, or I do not ask to live ; but surely
my father — he who has loved me — will never insist
upon the wretchedness of his own child — his only
one. Oh ! no, our fears are idle ; and were you
to see my suitor, how brave, and beautiful, and
gentle !"

"Katherine, you make me tremble;" interposed
the Lady ; " for I do not dare to hope that Caspar
Szuniogh will ever bow his will to yours ; and it is

h3



154 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

scarcely possible that he has lived on until to-day
without deciding on your fate."

" And yet, perhaps " persisted the fair girl.

" Be this, however, as it may ;" resumed the
Lady, without heeding the interruption ; " we shall
soon know the truth; for I dare not, like you,
Katherine, brave the vengeance of your father by
concealing from him even for an hour a secret so
important to his peace. The Saints are my witness !"
she added, casting up her fine eyes; ''that I have
had no secrets of my own to hide, not even that of
my misery, which he might have read upon my
wasted features, through every day and year of our
ill-starred union, had he willed to do so ; and yet
I shrink and tremble like a culprit to encounter
the storm which will burst over us both, when I
have told the tale ; for too well I know that even
should Szuniogh become ultimately reconciled to
the suit of the imprudent Forgats, his anger at
the cheat that you have put upon him will be
terrible."

*' But you think that he will relent, dear mother?"

'' Mistake me not, Katherine ; I neither speculate
nor hope. I have long ceased to do either. I



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 155

simply oflfer myself as the mean to divert in part
from you the violence of an offended father."

It is strange how sudden and strong a power of
resistance and endurance love gives to the young
and weak ! Only a few days previously, Katherine
would have shrunk away in terror from the idea of
even the trifling displeasure of her cold stern father ;
but now, even w^hen she was warned that his wrath
was likely to be beyond all bounds, she looked
calmly past it in the bright hopefulness of strong
affection, and saw only the possible blessing of an
union with the man she loved.

A fervent and fond embrace terminated the
interview between the mother and child ; and then,
firm in her duty, though trembling at her heart,
the Lady of Budethin sought the presence of her
lord.

She had prepared herself for violence ; nor could
she deny, dearly as she loved her daughter, that
the clandestine meetings of the lovers had been not
only unjustifiable, but too well calculated to arouse
the anger of a proud and harsh spirit like that of
Szuniogh. She felt that her task was one of im-
mense difficulty, nor did she dare to excuse the



156 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

imprudence of Katherine, lest she should draw
down the fury of her husband upon herself.

But she had miscalculated her strength when she
believed that she was ready to endure all the out-
burst of the Count Caspar's rage ; for never had
she hitherto beheld him so thoroughly transported
out of himself. Not satisfied with heaping upon
the head of his unhappy daughter the coarsest and
the vilest epithets, he next poured forth the vial of
his fury upon her unoffending mother ; and it was
not until he became satisfied that terror w^as so ra-
pidly paralyzing the senses of the unfortunate lady,
that she would shortly be unable to comprehend
either his threats or his commands, that he ordered
her to return to her wanton daughter, with the in-
formation that her hand was already disposed of;
that all opposition was as vain as it was dangerous ;
that he insisted on passive and perfect obedience ;
and that the love which she had so hghtly bestowed
upon the first who sought it, must be transferred to
the bridegroom whom he had himself chosen ; or
that it should prove the ruin alike of herself, and
of the boy-lover, who had dared to call it forth.
..iThis done, the Count strode from the hall, after



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 157

having turned a look upon his wife which drove the
blood from her quailing heart ; and after the delay
of a few instants, to enable her to obtain some
slight controul over her shattered nerves, the un-
happy lady tottered back to her own apartment,
where she knew that Katherine awaited her.

For a time the poor girl could not comprehend
the depth of her misery. She seemed to feel that
no fate could separate her from Forgats ; that ho
would be able to overcome every difficulty ; and it
was only by slow degrees that she began to under-
stand the possibility of failure. Despair seized her
at the conviction ; and she sank into a fearful state
of apathy, whence she was again aroused by a new
vision of horror, which had gradually grown into
shape upon her mind. Dnjsd t-

•' But there was more — -more, mother, than mere
denial — you said something more;" she uttered
slowly and hoarsely ; " You talked of another
bridegroom ; but no, no — he meant me not to be-
lieve that — he said it only to test my obedi-
ence ; only tell me that you are sure he did not
mean it "

" Alas my poor child l" sighed the lady, as she



158 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

drew the head of the agonized girl to her bosom ;
and the accent in which she murmured out the
words was so full of hopelessness, that Katherine
at once felt that she was answered. '''^¦' '

Suddenly she started up. " I can bear this no
longer;" she said wildly; ^'I shall go mad if I
do not rouse myself to action. I will go instantly to
my father ; perhaps he will listen to me, and be
moved by my misery. Do not seek to dissuade
me ;" she added, as she saw the half fearful and
half deprecatory expression of her mother's face ;
'' He must hear me, for am I not his child ?"

And she went ; but it was only to drive the irdii'
deeper into her soul. The rage of the Count
Caspar seemed to have obliterated for the instant
all memory of the holy tie by which they were
bound : and if his ire had fallen fiercely upon his
innocent wife, it gathered tenfold strength when
he vented it upon its legitimate object. He was
a proud man, and his pride was stung ; a stern
man, and his authority had been set at nought.
For long years he had been accustomed to see
all bow before him — and now, the consciousness
that he had been bearded by a girl, a child, a



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 159

creature dependent upon his pleasure, had lashed
him into fury.

But love gave Katherine strength; for the first
time she did not shrink, even before this terrible
whirlwind of passion. She implored, entreated, and
explained; admitted her error, but pleaded the
strength of her attachment ; and ultimately, un-
scared by the fearful expression of the face which
lowered upon her, with a wild cry of " Father,
fadier, save me !" she flung herself upon his breast.

Not thus^ however, was Caspar Szuniogh to be
softened. Without the pause of an instant he
seized the maiden by her slight waist, and with a
frightful curse cast her so rudely from him, that
she fell senseless and bleeding against the marble
pavement of the hall ; and then, without turning a
look in that direction, he once more strode away.

We have already alluded to the castle of the
Lion- Rock, which commanded the pass at the en-
trance of the valley of Kissutza. Stephen Fakusits,
the lord of that fortress, was an elderly warrior of
repute, whose only mistress had throughout life
been glory, and his best music the blast of a hostile
trumpet. Ever more happy at a fray than at a



160 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

feast, women had never been to him of higher im-
portance than any other of those toys which have
been invented to amuse the leisure hours of their
masters ; and as he was not a man who found plea-
sure in any thing save horses and arms, he had
never troubled himself to ask if they could in reality
claim a higher place among their fellow mortals.
But years had stolen past him unheeded, until he
besran to find that the silver hairs in his loner locks
and bushy beard outnumbered those which yet re-
tained their raven dye ; and that although he wore
his armour with as good a grace as ever, he had
become more conscious of its weight ; and then it
was he first remembered that he was the last of
his race, and that should he not take a wife to per-
petuate his ancient house, the Counts of Fakusits
would terminate in his own person.

For a time the stalwart old soldier " pished !"
and " pshawed !" away the recollection whenever it
chanced to come across him ; but gradually it
returned more frequently, and was less easily re-
pulsed ; and it came coupled with the annoying
reflection, that in order to marry it would be ne-
cessary to look out for a wife. This was a worse



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 161

dilemma than the first, for Fakusits had so little
remarked the female members of the noble famiUes
with whom he occasionally associated, that he could
not even recollect those among them who had mar-
nao^eable daughters.

In this difficulty, satisfied that of himself he
should never be able to accomplish his object, he
resolved to consult his neighbour Caspar Szuniogh ;
when suddenly it occurred to him that he might
have a daughter of his own, in which case nothing
could be more convenient and satisfactory. The
family of the Lord of Budethin was as ancient as
his own, his reputation as untarnished, his blood as
pure; while on his side he had the advantage of
superior wealth, to induce Szuniogh to overlook
any discrepancy in age which might possibly exist
between himself and his intended bride.

Having progressed thus far in his reflections, it
struck him that it might be desirable to ascertain
whether, indeed, his neighbour had a daughter;
for he seemed to have some vague memory that a
splendid festival, at which he had years ago
assisted in the castle of Budethin, had been on the
occasion of the birth of a child ; but whether boy



162 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

or girl he had never hitherto troubled himself to
enquire. Now, however, the affair had assumed a
more interesting aspect; and although the old
Count could not charge his memory with the exact
period at which the festival had taken place^, he had a
strong suspicion that not more than sixteen summers
could since have intervened. But this was a matter
of too slight importance to occupy the attention of
the bluff soldier ; and having ascertained from his
Castellan, who was more familiar than himself with
the interior of the Count Caspar's household, that
not pnly was there; an heiress at Budethin, but that
she was the beauty of the whole province, his re^
solution was taken at once ; and, without further
delay, he dispatched a trusty messenger to the for-
tress in the valley, charged with a letter, in which
he asked of Szuniogh the hand of his daughter in
marriagfiw tBd

Little did any one within those walls suspect the
mission of the Count Fakusits' retainer; and thus
when he had delivered the missive, and descended
to the buttery to ******* himself while he awaited a
reply, his talk was but of past onslaughts against
the Turks, and hopes of fortunate fields yet to come.



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 163

Every stranger was welcome to the retainers of
Budethin, for the habits of their lord cut them off
from much of that gossipry of good neighbourhood
so dear to those of their class ; and it was, conse-
quently, with alacrity, as well as good-Tvill, that the
servitors of Szuniogh hastened to perform the offices
of hospitality towards their guest. '"^" Qoai?

But if the messenger of the old Count was wel-
come in the buttery, he was tenfold more so in the
hall. The Lord of Budethin had for years main-
tained an establishment, which, wealthy though he
was, was yet so numerous as to be ill-suited to his
resources. He knew, also, that the castle of the
Lion-stone must prove to him either a firm, or a
formidable, neighbour; and, like the chief who
held it, he never dreamt for an instant of putting
the will of a mere woman in competition with the
expediency of such a measure as that which was
here proposed. In a word, his reply was written;
and when it reached the Count Stephen Fakusits,
he found himself the accepted suitor of the beauti-
ful Katherine Szuniogh. :.' t-^'j
'•'It was only a week after this event, that the
scene of misery which we have already described



164 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

as consequent on the Count Caspar's knowledge of
his daughter's attachment, turned the castle of Bu-
dethin into a house of mourning ; nor was the anguish
of Forgats, when he learnt through a confidential
servant the state of affairs, less poignant than that
of his mistress. Conscious that he had not been al-
together blameless in gaining her affections without
tlie knowledge and sanction of her father, and dis-
tracted at the idea of losing her for ever, even while
he was far from suspecting that she was promised to
another, he became wild witii despair ; and a thou-
sand vague and impossible schemes suggested them-
selves to his excited spirit only to be abandoned.

The temper of the Lord of Budethin was a pro-
verb in the country ; and thence he felt, at once,
that from him he had no hope ; for had he not
cursed his child ! — she whose innocence and love-,
liness should have screened her alike from harsh-
ness and from suffering. All that he could do, in
the first burst of his agony, was to send back, in
return for her miserable intelligence, a deep vow
of unalterable constancy, and the assurance that,
come what might, he never would abandon the
hope of one day calling her his own.



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 165

A few miserable days wore by ; and Katherine,
stunned by her heavy fall, and crushed beneath the
consciousness of her father's curse, was seated in
her chamber, absorbed in her own misery, and
reckless of all around her, when the stir within
the castle, and the blast of the warder's horn,
announced the arrival of some expected guest ;
but the poor girl heard neither the hurry of the
passing steps, nor the hoarse breath of the warning
trumpet ; nor was she aroused from her reverie of
pain, until the touch of her mother's hand, and the
sound of her low sad voice close to her ear, awoke
her to the consciousness of external objects.

'' Rouse yourself, my poor child !" she said ;
" for you have a fearful trial to go through. I
dare not withhold my message, for I am come at
your father's bidding — You have heard the blast of
the horn upon the watch-tower?"

" I have heard nothing," was the cold reply.

" It announced a guest" — pursued the unhappy
mother : '' He comes to you, Katherine."

''Is it a priest, to prepare me for the
burying ?"

^' Alas ! my daughter, I fear that he is one



166 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

whose errand will be even less welcome. It is
your destined bridegroom."

" Mother;" said the maiden, turning towards
her a cheek as pale and almost as cold as marble ;
" Do not mock me — I am no longer a child — I
have lived years in one short week — I am a wretched
thing, withering beneath a father's curse — Leave me
to my misery!"., | ^^^^ ^^^ i^i^^ .> .nooiEm m\
^ '* Would that I dared to do so l" s&.id the lady;
'^ but the will of the Count Caspar is imperative ;
You must bind up your hair, my Katherine, and
follow me to the hall. Such were your father's

words." ,^gff iVm B& liGdi ha^ iqMo^6& ai

" How !" exclaimed the wretched girl, rendered
desperate by the anguish of her spirit. *' Did he
not cast me from him ? fling me off like a noxious
reptile ? and leave me, bruised and bleeding upon
the earth ? And does he think, because for my
misery he is my father, that, therefore, I too am
callous to all feeling, and to be summoned back by
a word like a stricken hound, to be again chastised
at his good pleasure ? Return not to his presence,
mother, but send some other messenger; for this
day I will not pass the threshold of my chamber I"



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 167

" Katherine — let me implore — let me beseech
you "

" No more, mother, if you would have me pre-
serve my reason."

'' Do you not yet know your father?" persisted
the bewildered and terrified lady.
^' " Do I yet know him ?" echoed the cold voice of
the maiden. " Think you that I can still mistake
his nature ? It is because I know him that I per-
sist in my resolve. Has he not spurned and cursed
me? And do you ask me if I know him now .^'*

" Remember, Katherine, that your father's will
is absolute ; and that he will never withdra^v his
plighted word."

" Be it so ;'' said the maiden, with the same
reckless composure ; '' If he has sworn that I shall
be the bride of the man now beneath his roof, be he
whom he may, for I seek not to learn his name —
the whole world are alike hateful to me — I must
obey him, for I have no power to resist ; but until
the day of my betrothal comes, he shall not look on
me.

All further words were needless ; and convinced
by the cold composure of the maiden that she



168 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

would, now that her spirit had been roused by suf-
fering, prove as determined as her father, the Lady
of Budethin reluctantly retired from the apartment ;
and profited by her suggestion to plead sudden
indisposition, and excuse through one of her
women her daughter's non-appearance.

Though anger swelled at his heart, the Count
was fain to make a jest of Katherine's absence, for
he was far too politic to allow the suitor to believe
that his commands were set at nought. He there-
fore spoke lightly of the weaknesses of the sex,
whose conventionaUsms must be respected; and
appointed an early day for the betrothal, in order to
compensate Fakusits for present disappointment.
The concession was, however, needless ; for the
worthy old warrior had driven himself to matri-
mony as a measure of expediency ; and having ascer-
tained that all difficulties had been smoothed before
him, deemed it a matter of perfect indifference
whether he were introduced to his bride on the pre-
sent occasion, or at the foot of the altar.

Fortunate was it, both for Katherine and her un-
happy mother, that Fakusits, anxious to make this,
his first venture, terminate his attempts at possess-



KATHERINE OP^ BUDETHIN. 169

ing himself of a fitting helpmate, acquiesced so
readily in all the propositions and arrangements of
his haughty neighbour, that when the midnight
watch had been relieved, and that both the nobles,
who had drunk deep, separated on the drawbridge,
the father to withdraw to the solitude of his cham-
ber, and the suitor, followed by a score of his
retainers, to regain the fortress of the Lion Rock,
the Count Caspar was so well satisfied with the
termination of the negociation, that he retired to
rest without bestowing a single bitter thought on
the new dehnquency of his unhappy daughter ; nor
did he from that hour until the day of betrothal,
which was fixed for the following week, give a single
sign that he remembered her existence.

The maiden, meanwhile, lived on from day to
day in the fond hope that she should receive tidings
of Francis Forgats ; but time wore away, and the
morning at length arrived which to her was to be
big with fate. At day-dawn a packet from her
father was put into her hands by her faithful
attendant Irla, in which she was warned that imme-
diately before the sunset meal she would be affianced
to the Count Stephen Fakusits.

VOL. II. I



170 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

" The hour is then arrived !" she murmured to
herself, as the paper fell from her nerveless fingers ;
" I have no news of Forgats, and I am to become
the wife of the old man of the mountain-fortress.
Be it so. Better the stern warrior, than some gay
ru filer at the Court. I shall be left to die in peace
in my native province. The game will be soon
played out; and earth is wide enough to find a
grave for all !"

It was a weary morning. The Lady of Budethin
passed it on her knees, and thus, perhaps, was the
happiest inmate of the castle; the handmaidens
wept ; Irla, in particular, was inconsolable ; but
Katherine had neither tear nor sigh to spare. She
looked as though she had been suddenly stricken
into marble; and when, as the day fell, she was sum-
moned to the hall, and that her mother for the first
time since the preceding evening entered her apart-
ment, to conduct her to the presence of her father
and his guests, she involuntarily bent her head before
her, so majestic and so beautiful was her despair.

Not a trace of weakness was upon her cheek;
not the slightest moisture upon her long dark
eye-lashes; but a cold passionless spirit of en-



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 171

durance sat upon her brow, and a resolute deter-
mination sparkled in her restless glance. Her long
hair was looped with jewels, and her full purple
I'obe was confined about her waist with a belt of
pearls. She had gems upon her arms and on her
bosom, and the light flashed over them as she
moved along ; but her complexion was as white as
the moonshine that rests upon a sepulchre ; and to
those who had known her, ere sorrow fell on her
young heart, she looked like the spectre of her
former self.

As she entered the hall, leaning on the arm of
her mother, Szuniogh rose from his seat, and
advancing a few paces towards her took her
hand, and raised it to his lips ; but as he per-
formed this act of courtesy, he grasped it so
tightly between his nervous fingers, that the blood
started under the pressure ; and he looked keenly
into the face of the fair girl to read if she had
understood his meaning. In her present mood of
mind, however, Katherine was beyond all fear; and
it was with a sensation of wonder that her father led
her on, and seated her between hinaself and a sturdy
warrior many years his senior, whom he presented

i2



172 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

to her as her accepted suitor. Katherine turned
one look on the glittering mass of armour beside her;
for the old soldier, in order to do honour to the
occasion, was armed cap-a-pie ; and then suflpering
her eyes to wander listlessly over the assembled
revellers, she ultimately fixed them on the arched
entrance at the lower end of the hall, as thougrh
she momentarily anticipated the advent of some
unbidden guest. But she looked in vain; the
ceremony of betrothment took place, rings were
exchanged, the bridegroom sturdily saluted his
affianced bride, and a sumptuous banquet wound
up the business of the (Jay.

Not a word had passed the lips of the wretched
girl since she had invoked a blessing on her mother
in the sacredness of her own chamber; and as she
sat beside the colossal Lord of the Lion Rock, who,
sheathed in steel, and draining deep draughts of
Tokayer and Cyprus wine, was rapidly forgetting
the errand which had brought him to Budethin on
that particular occasion ; there were few in the circle
that surrounded her who read the history of a
broken heart in the blanched cheek, and livid lip
before them.



KATRERINE OF BUDETHIN. 173

ForgatSj when the intelligence of Katherine's
betrothal reached him, heard it with the same
feeling which may be supposed to belong to one
unjustly condemned for a crime of which he is inno-
cent, but who is aware of the enmity of his judges.
To see her once more — to embrace her for the last
time — -and then to lose his life under the scy****r of
the Infidel, was now his only hope ; and the same
means which he had found available to secure his
first interview with the beautiful victim, did not fail
him when he sought to obtain his last.

All things having been prepared by his agents
within the castle, a light fishing-boat hired from a
peasant in the valley, soon brought the adventurous
lover about midnight to the foot of the lofty tower,
which, protected by the Waag at its base, contained
the apartments of the ladies of the family. A rope-
ladder, prepared by one of their attendants who
had been bribed rather by pity than by gold,
swung from the casement of an ante-room con-
nected with the chamber of Katherine; and ere
many moments had elapsed she was in his arms.

They had no time to squander in alarms : they
once more beheld each other, and for a time were



174 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

happy ; but Forgats could not forget that they were
standing on the verge of a volcano ; and he urged
immediate flighty vowing a thousand vows of unal-
terable affection and enduring truth.

Katherine, half persuaded, resisted faintly. The
thought of her mother alone made her pause. The
prospect was alluring ; under her father's roof all
was tyranny and harshness, while Forgats offered
to her acceptance a home of peace and love. She
had already begun to yield, when Irla rushed into
the room exclaiming, " We are betrayed ! "

A kiss on the pale lips of the swooning Katherine,
and a spring through the open window, were all
that were left to the unhappy Forgats. Already
the glare of the torches borne by his enemies ap-
peared near the threshold of the chamber ; and the
fierce voice of Szuniogh, breathing frightful ven-
geance against both his child and her lover, fell
upon his ear ; while so dreadful were his denuncia-
tions of Katherine, that Forgats could no longer
controul his passion ; and re-ascending the ladder
upon which he had paused to listen to the advancing
steps of the furious father, he would again have
sprung into the room ; but as he laid his hand upon



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 175

the frame of the casement, it was hurriedly closed
against him bylrla; and the attendant whom he
had left in the boat, seizing him with a nervous
clutch, forced him down the ladder; and having
grasped the oars pushed the little bark from the
shore, and drove it into the full stream of the
current.

Like an infuriate animal rushed the Count
Caspar upon his daughter. His naked weapon was
in his hand, and his eyes glared with passion.
" Wanton and vile !" he hissed from between his
clenched teeth, as he grasped her by the arm with
such rude violence that she writhed beneath it ; ''Is
it thus that you dishonour the name of Szuniogh ?
Is this, the castle of your ancestors, to be made the
trysting-place of your unhallowed meetings? My
first thought was to slay you ; but I dare not pollute
my weapon with so foul a victim. You would have
covered the disgrace of the house of Fakusits with
the veil of night — have lorded it in the proud halls
of the Lion Rock with a lie upon your lips, and a
shadow on your spirit — But this was not to be —
I am, at least, spared this last disgrace. The
gray-haired husband is not to be the thing of shame



176 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

you would have made him. But enough of you, and
of your vileness — You have cumbered the earth too
long already. And now, hark ye, sirrahs !" he
added, turning towards the trembling vassals who
were clustered about the door of the apartment
awaiting the catastrophe which each felt was but
too certain to ensue, although they could not guess
its natiu'e ; " Away with her to the castle vaults —
there are narrow lodgings there which will scarcely
accommodate at once her and her paramour ! Why
do you stand staring upon me thus ? Am I one to
be disobeyed ?"

Too well did those whom he addressed know
that beyond his will there was no appeal ; his
power over the destiny of his daughter was un-
doubted ; and although there were many among
them who loved the wretched girl as though she
had been of their own kin, there was not one who
dared withstand the authority of his Suzerain.

As yet the actual intention of the Count did not
appear to have struck any of his followers ; or, if
one or two among them had for a moment enter-
tained a suspicion of the frightful truth, they had
instantly spurned it as too horrible for reality ; and



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 177

it would have seemed as though the miserable vic-
tim herself had been equally ignorant of his mean-
ing ; for she unresistingly obeyed his bidding when
he motioned her to follow him, her thoughts dwell-
ing upon the escape of Forgats, and her heart
putting up prayers for his safety ; nor was it until
they stood within the gloomy dungeons which lie
below the bed of the Waag, and that she heard the
voice of her father command that bread and water
sufficient to sustain nature during a period of three
days, as well as pickaxes and shovels should be im-
mediately procured, that she began to have a horrid
forebodinor of his intention, and of her own fate !

Had he told her that she could never again look
upon the face of Francis Forgats, she would have
welcomed death as a blessed deliverance from a
weary and hopeless existence, for life to her would
then have been worthless ; but just as she had felt
his breath upon her brow, listened to his fond voice,
and began once more to hope — to see so terrible, so
horrible a death prepared for her — Without warn-
ing, and without preparation, to be cast into the
grave, sentient and struggling ! — no wonder that her
woman-nature once more gave way, and that she

i3



178 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

sank at the feet of her unnatural father in a state
of partial insensibility.

Around the vault in which they stood was a
succession of niches, left at intervals in the solid
walls of the building, in each of which stood a large
mass of stone forming a rude seat; and having on
the right hand a sort of inner hollow containing a
shelf, produced in the same primitive manner, and
sufficiently spacious to contain a pitcher of water,
and a large loaf of bread. The purpose of these in-
human dungeons could not be for a moment mis-
understood, even if there had not been piled at the
entrance of each a number of large stones hewn
into shape, and evidently prepared to close the
living graves near which they were deposited.

While the messengers of the Count Caspar were
absent on their sinful errand, the silence of the
grave reigned throughout the dungeon. Katherine
still lay on the damp earth where she had cast her-
self; and her father stood beside her leaning upon
his naked weapon, and looking as stern and as im-
passive as the rocky walls by which he was sur-
rounded. Not a sound fell on the ear save the
lashing of the wild waves that fretted and foamed



kaTherine of budethin. 179

against the foundations of the castle, and which were
rioting above their heads ; nor even after their re-
turn into the vaults did any material change take
place in the position of the principal group.

A wave of the hand indicated to the creatures of
his will the grave which Szuniogh had selected for
his daughter. The bread and water were accordingly
deposited reluctantly and lingeringly within it ; nor
was it until the great weight of the stones required
to close up the recess sent their hollow echoes
through the vast subterranean, as they were with
difficulty moved into their places, that the wretched
girl awakened to a full sense of her coming trial.
But when she at length did so, a shriek so wild and
shrill that it seemed to ring through the solid
masonry, and for an instant to still the tumult of
the choking waters, filled the vault, as she bounded
from the earth, and throwing back her dishevelled
hair, glared wildly and distractedly around her.

'*Tell me that I dream" — she yelled out in a voice
so terrible that it seemed no longer to be human ;
" I am so young, so innocent — Life is so strong
within me— I shall linger there — there — in that
hideous grave, until I feed on my own flesh, and



180 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

demons come, and mock me. Men ! Monsters !
Is there not one of you who wears a sword ? Not
one of you who fears a woman's curse ? I tell you
that I cannot die, wrapped in that shroud of stone —
I must have earth upon me — earth, and the blessed
sunshine. I shall live there for ever — mad — mad .'"

As she howled out the last sentence, another
signal from Szuniogh, who had looked on unmoved
at the frantic agony of his daughter, and who dis-
covered that the masonry had now reached a height
which rendered it necessary that she should be at
once placed in her living grave in order that it
might be closed for ever — another and an impe-
rative signal warned his creatures to seize their
victim; and she felt herself suddenly grasped by
strong hands; but she broke away from them with
a power borrowed from the state of insanity to
which she had been urged ; and with a spring like
that of a wild animal bounded beyond their reach.

None who were present ever forgo that awful
midnight. Urged by their furious master, the
indignant vassals were compelled to commence a
chase, at which the demons must have made merry.
Rendered desperate; partially maddened from



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 181

terror; and temporarily endued with superhuman
strength ; the wretched girl swept through the re-
cesses of the vault, pursued by a score of armed
and powerful men ; now lost in the obscurity of the
subterranean, and again betrayed by her white
dress, as the light of the torches flashed upon it ;
standing for a brief instant at bay to regain her
struggling breath; and then once more darting
foi-ward with a wild yell that seemed as though
her spirit must escape upon its breath. But this
disproportionate and unnatural race could not endure
for ever ; and at length the maiden sank down with
the blood gushing from her mouth and nostrils, and
tracing characters of vengeance upon her snowy
drapery.

In this extremity she became an easy victim.
Senseless and unresisting, she was lifted into the
niche, and placed upon the cold and narrow seat ;
but each of those who helped to place her there
muttered in an undertone a prayer for forgiveness
to his patron saint, ere be turned avvay with a sick
heart, and a throbbing pulse! jW elBaaBV insn^ilri

In a few moments all was silent in that place of
crime. The last stone had been adjusted ; the last



182 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

command obeyed; and all save one felt as they
left the dungeon- vault that they had another heavy
crime upon their souls.

And where was the fond mother while this cruel
tragedy was enacting? Sleeping calmly in her
velvet- draperied bed, dreaming of her child. Once
she was startled from her slumber by a strange wild
sound, which seemed to her half-sleeping ear like
the frantic yell of human agony; but she soon
stilled the beating of her heart with the reflection
that this could not be; and having breathed a
prayer for preservation against all evil spirits, and
blessings on her suffering daughter, she closed her
heavy eyes and slept again.

Her waking was one of terror; for Irla, the
beloved attendant of Katherine, having recovered
from the deep faint into which she had been thrown
by the violent scene enacted in the chamber of her
mistress, no sooner regained possession of her senses
than she hurried to the bedside of the wretched
mother. At such a moment every form of etiquette
was banished ; and the Lady rose eagerly from her
pillow to listen to the dark narration of the waiting-
woman. But alas! Irla had continued too long



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 183

insensible to leave room for the faintest hope that
any interference might now avail, even had the
wife of the Count Caspar been possessed of influ-
ence to sway the actions of her lord ; and thus the
two miserable and anxious women could only weep
and bewail themselves, until the quick ear of the
girl caught the sound of stealthy footsteps in the
gallery; and venturing from the chamber to learn
what they might portend, heard from the lips of a
young vassal to whom she was affianced, the history
of the midnight tragedy.

Maddened by the recital, Irla waited not to thank
her lover for the solicitude which had induced him to
brave theanorer of his fierce lord, in order to assuje
himself of her safety -, but after having heard that the
Count had closed the dungeon with his own hand, and
borne away the keys, she rushed back into the presence
of the Lady; and sinking on her knees, buried her face
in the tapestried coverlet, and gasped out her tale.

A pang, such as no words can portray, struck to
the mother's heart. She had then heard the dyin^
yell of her child ! It was a thought too terrible to
bear; and when next Irla addressed her, she had
lost the power to reply.



184 THEj.UN.GARIAN CAaTJt.|;. ^

On the morrow all was ffrief and consternation
throughout the castle ; for it was only in the presence
of their lord that the retainers kept up a decent
show, pf composure. When they were beyond his
observation, there was not one who did not shed
bitter tears for the fair and innocent victim ; but,
even in the midst of her first burst of anguish, Irla
did better ; for she dispatched the accustomed mes-
senger to Forgats to acquaint him with the fate of
his unhappy mistress; and Szuniogh had scarcely
intimated to his miserable wife that for the re-
mainder of her days she must remain a close
prisoner in her own apartments as the guilty accom-
plice of her child's disgrace, and never again ven-
ture to appear before him — a command which filled
her spirit with the first sensation of gratitude that
he had ever awakened within it — ere the Comit For-
gats was already preparing to deliver her whom
he mourned.

His duty lay plainly traced out before him — He
must rescue Katherine at any risk of life and
liberty — It was for him that she had suffered; and
a shudder came over him as he remembered that he
might be even now too late ! She was so young.



KATHERINE OF BtlDETHIN. 185

SO gentle; and what must be her terror in such
a position ? He did not dare to pursue the ghastly
images which rose before him as if to answer the
appeal ; nor had he time to waste his moments in
inactive speculation. He loved the maiden with a
passion as deep and fervent as her own; and the
danger of the enterprise which he meditated for
her deliverance only enhanced his impatience to
undertake it. He accordingly assembled his fol-
lowers ; and having told them all the story of his
love and its unnatural consequence, he warned
them of the demoniacal character of the Count
Caspar; and then bade only those who cared to risk
his vengeance in order to revenge their lord, move to

his side in token that they were willing to share his

p , qe led

fortunes.

The first feehng of happiness that the young

Count had known since the betrothal of Katherine,

he was fated to experience at that moment ; for the

words had scarcely escaped his lips ere he found

all his vassals to a man standing beside him, and

the space vacant on which they had been marshalled,

when he prepared to address them. Energetically

did he thank them, and declare that their devotion



186 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

inspired him with renewed hope ; and then, bid-
ding each man take what rest he might require
until sunset, he informed them that at that hour he
should commence his march, in order to reach the
fortress of Budethin at midnight. ^'^^"*^

Meanwhile the affectionate Irla had not been
idle. Prepared for the attempt of Forgdts, she had
won over the warder to his interest; and by the
assistance of her lover secured the neutrality of a
great portion of the garrison ; who, when they were
once convinced that the preservation of the Lady
Katherine, and her deliverance from the power of her
unnatural father, were the sole views of the young
Countj consented to make merely a decent show of
resistance, but by no means to impede his success.

Unconscious that the way had been thus judi-
ciously and effectively cleared for him, Forgats
on the stroke of midnight presented himself at the
gate, which was immediately and silently opened ;
and while a few weapons were unsheathed, and a
few menaces uttered by some of the guard, the
remainder affected to be buried in sleep, or openly
acknowledged that their hearts were in his cause.

Having gained the principal gallery. Forgets



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 187

at once besran to descend a wide flig^ht of stone
steps which he justly concluded would lead him
towards the dungeons; but in order to discover
their entrance he was compelled to apply to one of
the Count Szuniosfh's retainers.

It could not have chanced more favourably ; for his
enquiry was addressed to one of the very individuals
who had assisted to deposit the wretched girl in her
miserable grave^ and had not ventured since that
hour to close his eyes after his first attempt at sleep,
so friofhtful were the visions which had haunted
his pillow ; and who consequently hailed his ap-
pearance as that of a good spirit, who might, in
saving the wretched Katherine, free himself from the
nocturnal terrors by which he was now enthralled.

The path once ascertained, all obstacles gave way
before the impassioned eagerness of Forgats. The
plated door opening upon the dungeons, which might
have seemed impassable to a less determined adven-
turer, reluctantly yielded before the strokes of his good
battle-axe ; and entrance once gained into the vault,
the narrow prison of Katherine was destroyed as if
by magic ; and the still insensible girl, wrapped in her
ensanguined robe, clasped in the arms of her lover.



188 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

The noise occasioned by the battering down of
the dungeon door, and the demolition of the soUd
masonry behind which the Lady Katherine was
entombed, had, however, fallen on the quick ears
of the Count Caspar; who, springing from his
sleepless bed, summoned about him all those
of his followers who were at hand ; and gathering
strength and numbers as he approached the great
hall of the fortress, he found himself in time to
attack Francis Forgats, who was rapidly making
his way to the portal with his unconscious daughter
in his arms.

The vassals of the lover were all good men
and true ; and so many flung themselves between
Szuniogh and the rescued girl, while the blows of his
own followers fell so unfortunately, that Forgats,
fighting his way with the pale Katherine hanging
upon his shoulder, succeeded in springing upon his
horse which was there awaiting him ; and followed
by a party of his retainers, the remainder lingering
behind to protect his retreat ; ' he succeeded in
escaping from Budethin, and the blows and threats
of its exasperated lord.

The incredible report of Katherine's dreadful



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 189

fate had also travelled with the dawn to the Lion
Rock; and Stephen Fakusits, indignant that any
father should dare to use violence towards a
maiden under betrothal to himself, and aghast at
a tale which to his simple and honest nature ap-
peared to be the mere invention of a distempered
brain, resolved to learn the truth from the lips of
Szuniogh himself At dawn he accordingly set
forth ; and had scarcely ridden half an hour, when
in the narrow pass of the Oblazow mountain, he
came upon a party of horsemen, in the midst of
whom rode a lady, who from exhaustion could
scarcely keep the saddle.

Deciding from this circumstance that he had
encountered some bold ravisher who was bearing
off a noble maiden against her will, all the knight-
errantry of the brave old soldier rushed to his
heart ; and he instantly resolved to deliver the lady,
be she who she might. Giving no opportunity
of parley therefore, he set spurs to his horse ; and
followed by his vassals, to whom an adventure was
always welcome, forthwith attacked the handsome
young noble who supported the lady in her seat,
and who was evidently the commander of the party.



190 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLEV"

No words can express his rage, however, when as
Forgats wheeled aside his horse to escape a blow,
the bright light of the rising sun flashed f6r
a moment upon the face of the maiden, arid
Fakusits recognised in the fair fugitive his affianced
bride.

In an instant he rushed upon the unhappy
lover with a violence, which young, powerful, and
active as he was, might well have called forth all
the energies of Forgats, even had he been untram-
melled ; but encumbered as he was with the lady,
whom he had also to protect against the onslaught
of his enemy, the combat was as brief as it was
furious. Fakusits had no burthen to support, no
precious charge to guard ; and while his followers
fell on the retainers of the young noble, his well-
aimed and heavy blows soon made the youth reel in
his saddle, and ultimately brought him to the earth.
But even as he fell he clutched the insensible girl
with a grasp of iron, nor did he in death relax his
hold ; and Katherine lay beside him as pale and
apparently as lifeless as himself.

When they saw their Lord extended on the
earth, with his shivered weapon in one hand, and



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 191

his Other arm wound about the maiden, the vassals
of Forgats became mad to revenge his defeat ; nor
was it until two of them had shared the fate of their
leader that the authoritative command of Fakusits
put an end to the useless conflict ; who, on alighting
from his horse, and raising the head of Katherine
upon his arm, and discovering that although
stunned by the fall she yet breathed, coldly con-
signed her to the care of one of his attendants, ;
and retraced his steps to his own castle, where his
unexpected re-appearance, so strangely accompa-
nied, created no small surprise.

The party travelled slowly from the moment
that it commenced its retrogade movement ; and
while one sturdy swordsman supported the lady
before him in the saddle, another walked beside /^^
her to render such aid as might be required; and
the comparative ease which this arrangement afforded
to the poor fugitive recalled her scattered energies, j
and enabled her, on their arrival at the Lion Rock, to.r
recognise Fakusits as he assisted her to dismount.

The brow of the old warrior was dark, his mood
stern, and his demeanour as cold as was compatible
with his character of host.



192 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

'' Not thus, lady ;" he said, as she leaned
heavily upon him in her progress to the hall ; '' did
I look to welcome you to my hearth ; nor do I even
now^ know in what manner, or to whom, I am to
offer greeting. If as my affianced wife, why are
you here, a detected fugitive ? — If as the light-
o'-love of Francis Forgats '*

That name at once broke the spell of the heavy
lethargy by which the wretched girl had been so
long enthralled; and with a heart-rending groan
she flung herself at the feet of the bewildered
noble, and looked up earnestly into his face.
" What of him ? What of Forgats ?" she exclaimed
wildly ; '' Where is my deliverer from that worse
than death — that living grave in which they had
entombed me ? I seem to have some horrid
memory, clouding my spirit like an evil dream !

Tell me — only tell me that he lives "

" I will not cheat you with a lie ;" said Fakusits ;
" He fell under my sword. But think of yourself,
maiden ; for if all that I have heard, and that your
own words imply, be indeed true, you will need a
defender even in your guilt ; and never shall it be
said that Stephen Fakusits abandoned a woman to



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 193

the misery which his arm could avert from her help-
lessness."

" Count !*' cried the Lady Katherine, rising
proudly from her knees, the implied suspicion of
her affianced husband having banished for a mo-
ment even the memory of her lost lover; " I forgive
you for the doubt — the pang to which you have
subjected me — for I have indeed no right to hope
that when my father — he who has watched me
from my infancy — has branded me with guilt,
others will deem me innocent. And yet I swear
to you, in the name of the Blessed Mary, that I am
as pure as when he first took me from my mother's
arms Oh, wherefore did you bring this ruin down
upon me by seeking to make me your bride, when
my heart had been vowed to another ?"

*• How say you, Lady ?" asked Fakusits in his
turn; " Mean you that when your father promised
me your hand he knew that Foi-gats loved you ?
Did he play me false, when he told me that you
had never listened to any other vows ?"

" If he indeed pledged himself to so foul a false-
hood, then is he forsworn !" said the maiden ; '• And
now — now that you have destroyed the onlv hear

VOL. II. K



194 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

that loved me, whither am I to turn for refuge?
Yet, no, no ;" she continued wildly ; " there is
indeed one other, my wretched mother, but she,
like myself, is persecuted and powerless."

'' Katherine of Budethin ;" said the old soldier
solemnly; *' lay your hand in mine, and swear to
me that it is even as you say. As my affianced
wife you owe me this concession. Swear, and on
my side, I pledge myself by the honour of a
soldier to put all faith in your assurance."

" Now the Saints be praised !" said the maiden,
as she stretched forth her small hand, and laid it in
the ample palm of her host ; " Gratefully and fer-
vently do I swear that these lips have never yet been
tainted by untruth."

*' 'Tis well ;" murmured the old chief, who for the
first time in his life found himself moved by the
tears and beauty of a woman; ''^then never will I
abandon you, save at your own bidding, to the
blind fury of your reckless father. Remember,
Katherine, that you are my wife in the eyes of
both heaven and earth, and that thus you may
dwell beneath my roof in all honour and reverence ;
nor shall you ever have reason to repent your trust.



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 195

Decide, therefore, your own destiny. If you abide
here, you shall live unmolested as it may best
please you ; and I will surround you with women,
and with respect ; trusting to time and to your own
heart "

** Oh, spare me the rest, noble and generous
Fakusits !" exclaimed the maiden, as she buried
her face in her spread hands, and burst into a pas-
sionate paroxysm of grief; " I accept with thanks
and blessings your offer of protection ; for, alas ! I
dare not again trust myself to the power of the
Count Caspar ; but never, never, can either time or
gratitude, even deep as mine will be, induce me to
become the wife of his murderer !"

'' Nay, Katherine ;" said Fakusits mildly, though
the blood leapt to his cheek and brow as she spoke ;
'' Do not misjudge me in your turn. Had your ill-
fated lover put faith in my chivalry, and confided to
me the tale of your ill-starred passion, never would
I have stood between you and your happiness. I
had not then seen you. Lady ; and mine has not
been a life of silken dalliance, of which your weak
sex made the charm. For me, the daughter of
Szuniogh, when I asked her in marriage, possessed

k2



196 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE*

no charm potent enough to bend me to dishonour;
and thus the ill-timed stroke which smote your
chosen suitor was one of misconception, not of pre-
meditated wrong."

" But it destroyed him" — murmured the wretched
girl amid her sobs. ' +0*-?* r^j^ ?

?' Alas ! for that evil there is no remedy ;"
sighed Fakusits ; " And now, fair Katherine, are
we agreed that should your father, as assuredly
he will when the tidings of the night's adventure
reach him, come hither to demand you at my
hands, I have your sanction to withhold com-
pliance ?"

" Oh, if indeed you would save me from death —
from worse, far worse than death !" was the reply of
the maiden, as she wrung her hands in terror ;
" Abandon me not ! I trust to you — I cling to you
— for, alas ! I have no other hope ! Had you be-
held that frightful chase, when in the dark vault
Which they sought to make my grave, they pursued
me with outstretched arms over the rugged earth,
while he who should have saved me stood by, and
urged them on — Is it not strange that they did not
hunt me into madness? Oh, save me, save me, as



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 197

you are a knight and a soldier, from a renewal of
that hideous hour !"

*' Calm yourself, Katherine;" said her host;
** Henceforward I will have no will but yours ; no
law save your good pleasure. I know not how, but
I feel that you have made a child of me amid my
gray hairs; and, on the word of a Magyar, no
father, were he ten thousand Szunioghs, shall ever
bear you hence in my despite. And now I will
intrude on you no longer. You have need of rest
and gentle tendance, and to both will I consign
you ; with a solemn pledge not to venture again
into your presence until summoned by yourself."

'* How shall I repay such gallant service!"
sobbed the grateful and excited girl.

*' As you may yourself hereafter deem most
fitting," said the old noble, ere he left her to the
repose which she so much needed.

When the Lord of the Lion Rock retired from the
presence of his affianced wife, he passed out of the
fortress, and bent his steps to the eastern rampart.
All nature lay steeped in sunshine, for time had
glided by imperceptibly, and it was now high noon;
but a brighter glow, even than that on which he



198 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

looked, was over the spirit of the old warrior. For
the first time he felt the influence of beauty and of
tears ; he could not disguise from himself that, even
while he rejoiced that he had no longer a rival, he
could almost have wished his strong right arm had
failed, ere it should have been himself who struck
him down — for Katherine loved him ! Katherine,
the loveliest creature upon whom his eyes had ever
rested. She who was now beneath his roof — de-
pendent on his protection — and whom, could he but
win her to his heart, he felt that he could cherish like
a child, as well as honour as a wife. A strange
change had come over the spirit of the stern old
soldier ; and he thanked his patron saint that, even
although she never might be his, she was yet near
him, and trusted to him.

There was a beautiful and an unselfish generosity
blent with the sudden passion of Fakusits, which
made it not only respectable, but almost sublime ;
and throughout the lengthened musing in which he
indulged, as he paced to and fro the rampart, he
sought rather how he might secure the comfort and
restore the peace of the unhappy girl, than how he
could further his own interests. " End as it may ;"



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 199

he murmured to himself, as he turned towards the
hall;, whither he had been summoned to take his
place at the noontide meal ; " if she be not my
wife, I will have none other; and old Stephen
Fakusits will be the last of his line."

Darkness came, and the persecuted Katherine
still slept the deep sleep of exhaustion, when the
warder's horn announced the approach of strangers.
As Fakusits had anticipated, it was the Count
Caspar come to claim his daughter ; which he did
with such discourteous threats as to make the heart
of the old knight leap to his throat.

Asj on the one hand, the infuriated father had
refused to enter the castle ; and the Count Stephen,
on the other, equally declined quitting it in order to
receive him, the two Magnates met on the draw-
bridge; and the glare of the pine torches borne by
the attendants, lit up into still more unnatural livid-
ness the pale and working features of the baffled
Lord of Budethin, whose passion almost choked his
utterance; while Fakusits, strong in a sense of
right, looked calmly on, until the violent language
of his visitor aroused him in his turn to frenzy.

The errand of Szuniogh was bootless ; to all his



200 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

declarations that he had full power over his
daughter, whom he had condemned to die, and who
should abide her fate, the old knight retorted that
Katherine of Budethin was his affianced wife — that
his honour was satisfied by the death of Forgats;
and that of the innocence of the lady herself he
was so thoroughly convinced, that he would never
wed another. That, moreover, the Count Caspar had
forfeited all authority over her future fate by the
hellish crime of which he had been guilty ; and that,
in fine, the maiden should remain an inmate of the
Lion Rock, as she herself had willed to do, at all
risks, and braving all results. And having so said,
the gallant old soldier turned upon his heel, and re-
entered the castle ; leaving his now declared enemy
foaming with rage, and maddened by his failure.

Days and weeks wore by, and the Count Fakusits
remained faithful to his pledge ; although he re-
turned from every interview with his gentle inmate
more enamoured than before. The deep and close
mourning in which Katherine had shrouded her-
self, was only too typical of her stricken heart and
broken spirit ; while it formed so strange a contrast
with her pure and childlike beauty, that had she



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 201

sought to enhance her loveliness, she could have
adopted no fitter garb.

As she became accustomed to the presence and
society of her host, she was soothed by his consola-
tions, and strengthened by his example. She knew
that, like herself, he was suffering all the pangs of
bitter disappointment and regret ; but no word of
passion, or of reproach, ever passed his lips ; and
while she felt that she could never love again, for
that her heart was in the grave of Francis Forgats,
she could not withhold from the Count Stephen her
admiration and her respect.

Things were in this state, when to her great joy,
as she sat alone in her chamber, buried in gloomy
retrospection, her affectionate Irla one day suddenly
rushed into her presence ; and throwing her elf at
her feet, embraced her knees, and gave way to all
the extravagance of a wild and frantic delight. Her
simple tale was soon told. She had escaped from
Budethin, where, since the departure of Katherine,
she had attached herself to the service of the Lady
Susanna, whose captivity and persecutions she had
voluntarily shared ; but who was now subjected to
such unnatural harshness, that it had been con-

k3



202 TliE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

eluded between them, that her only chance of partial
emancipation from her husband's tyranny lay in
the consent of her daughter to give her hand to
Fakusits, and thus secure a powerful protector.

Great was the struggle in the breast of Katherine.
She did not seek to blind herself to the many noble
qualities of the man who had become, in the truest
sense of the word, her benefactor ; but she could not
forget that, although inadvertently, or through mis-
apprehension, he had slain the beloved one for whom
she would willingly have resigned her own existence.

At lengthy however, the tears of Irla, the
thought of her mother's wretchedness, rendered
deeper and more hopeless through her own agency ;
and the consciousness, that although he well knew
the errand of the affectionate waiting-woman, Faku-
sits, with a delicacy which she could not but appre-
ciate, nevertheless forbode to urge his claim, failed
not to produce their effect; arid the daughter of
Szuniogh, although still shrinking and reluctant,
eventually consented to become the wife of the Count
Stephen ; whose age she solaced by her gentleness,
and whose generosity she repaid by her duty and
devotion.



KATHERINE OF BUDETHIN. 203

From thenceforward there was feud between the
two castles of Budethin and the Lion Rock. Cen-
turies have since passed by ; and of the lofty towers
of the former, one only now remains erect ; the ditch
has been long dry, and was lately converted into
an English garden, bright with flowers, and shady
with waving boughs. The unnatural monument of
a father's cruelty is still to be seen among the ruins ;
where the peasants of the neighbourhood point
out to the curious stranger, the narrow niche in
which the Lady Katherine passed a night of terror.
The family of the Counts of Szuniogh intermarried
with the warlike and powerful knights of Pod-
manin ; but the race became finally extinct at the
end of the last century.

The castle and territory of Budethin then passed
into the possession of the Count Stephen Csaky,
who rebuilt a great portion of the edifice, and made
it the abode of taste and luxury.

Of the fortress of the Lion Rock nothing now re-
mains save a mass of shapeless ruins ; having so
utterly thrown off all trace of human ingenuity,
that, as the traveller gazes upward from the valley,
he can no longer distinguish anything save the



204 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

rugged and picturesque outline of the mountain,
gleaming cold and white against the blue back-
ground of the sky; and looking as though the
foot of man had never intruded on its solitary
grandeur.



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 205



CHAPTER V.

The tale was told, and the voice of M. Karolyi
died away into a silence, which remained unbroken
during several minutes ; for he had so thoroughly
succeeded in exciting the interest of his auditors,
that they could not immediately shake off the spell
by which they had been enthralled.

Time had meanwhile stolen on; and the deep
tones of the clock upon the gate-tower tolled mid-
night just as the party were beginning to recover
their wonted spirits. It was too late to resume the
amusement of narration; but the offer of another
guest to give them on the morrow a legend of the
Podmanins, to whom allusion had been made by
M. Karolyi, was eagerly accepted, for it linked
more closely together the chain of the past ; and
while the ladies entreated, that if there were a
heroine to the story which they were next to hear,
they might be spared such horrors as those to which
they had just listened : the gentlemen on their side
were equally anxious that examples of tyrannical



206 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

vanity might not be multiplied ; and that they should
not be introduced to a second Caspar Szuniogh.

Further discussion was prevented by the host,
who summoned the younger portion of his guests
to the dance, and the elder to the midnight meal ;
and then the conversation turned, as if by general
consent, upon the probable chance that the thaw
might recommence on the morrow; and as the
" good night" passed from mouth to mouth, it
was in most instances coupled with this hope.

But the goddess with the sheeny wings proved
inexorable. The frost-spirit amused himself until
dawn with tracing upon the window-panes those
delicate and mysterious designs, in which the eye
of fancy can distinguish almost every object in the
creation, so minutely and intangibly produced, as
to seem the emanations of a fairy's wand, or the
pencillings of some earth-descended star ; and when
the earliest of the watchers looked forth from his
casement, he saw rock and river alike subjected to
the power of winter ; hoar-frost whitened the sur-
face of the precipitous acclivity ; and thin flakes of
snow, which glittered in the cold sunshine like plates
of ****l, fringed the shallow edges of the stream.



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 207

It was plain that there would be no escape from
the castle that day ; and it was consequently with a
renewed determination to make their lengthened
sojourn within its walls as agreeable as was con-
sistent with a compulsatory residence, that the
party again met; and soon the sound of music, and
the voice of woman's laughter, that sweetest and
most melodious of all tones when it is regulated
by gracefulness, rang through the spacious halls ;
while the excitement of both dice and cards was
not wanting for those who preferred uncertain for-
tune to rational and calm enjoyment.

A stroll upon the ramparts was ventured by
some of the guests ; and thus, with the always im-
portant business of the banquet, the day passed
over so pleasantly, that many of those who had
repined at their detention from the dissipations of
the capital, had good reason to recal it with regret,
ere many months had succeeded their departure
from the frontier-fortress.

It is an experience that all of us occasionally
make as life lengthens. We fret and chafe under
restraint, even when it involves neither inconvenience
nor suffering. "We had arranged things otherwise.



208 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

and we become irritable whenever our plans are
thwarted, although we are compelled to acknowledge
to our own hearts that they might not have secured
to us greater satisfaction than is produced in very
despite of all preconcerted measures ; but it is only
at a later hour, when inconvenience and annoyance
come upon us, that we look back and marvel how
we could have rebelled against the fate which com-
pelled us to be happy in a way that we had not
anticipated, and for which we had consequently
made no preparation.

When the evening had again arrived, and tliat
the circle was once more formed around the ample
hearth, the promised tradition was eagerly de-
manded ; and the guest who had volunteered its
recital having twisted his moustache into a fiercer
curl, and deposited his richly-carved meerschaum
in the pocket of his furred and braided coat, at
once commenced his task.

THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ.

The bold and restless Knights of Podmanin were
alike the wonder and the terror of the fifteenth
century, not only throughout the province of the



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 209

Waag which they inhabited, but also of Moravia
and Silesia, into which they perpetually carried war
and rapine.

Nearly the whole of the fortresses on the heights
of the Carpathian range, which even in the northern
portion of the county of Trenschin have already
beconoe lofty and diflScult of access, were in their
power; some few of them, indeed, by right of in-
heritance ; but the greater number had been won
by aggression from their legitimate and rightful
owners.

The vassals subjected to their extended sway
were very numerous ; and the continual success
which attended their daring and desperate enter-
prises, drew to their side so many of those poor and
petty nobles whose sole possessions at that trou-
bled period were a high-sounding name and a
sharp sword, and to whom the prospect of plunder
was ever welcome, that their forces almost assumed
the dignity of an army; and what on a smaller
scale would have merely worn the aspect of a pre-
datory and factious foray, grew in its more ex-
tended shape into all the menace of an aggressive
war.



210 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Thus^ for instance, in 1466, Blaise of Podmanin
and Bielko of Lednitz entered Moravia at the head
of a strong body of men, plundered and sacked
the holy cloister of Wisowitz, and devastated the
surrounding country to so frightful an extent that
Podiebrad, King of Bohemia, vs^rote to demand
redress from his son-in-law, the great Matthias
Corvinus, in an autograph letter ; although only a
short time previously the Grand Marshal of Bo-
hemia, Mathias Sternberg and Jany Lippa, had
made a similar marauding enterprise into Hungary.

But still more famous even than Blaise himself
were his grandsons John and Ralph of Podmanin ;
and the times in which they lived were well suited
to the development of their fierce emd factious
qualities.

Hungary had two kings ; each asserting his
claim to the crown, and neither possessing sufficient
power to secure it. Pressed by Zapdlya and his
allies the Turks, Ferdinand I. could not controul
or limit the excesses of either faction ; who, while
their respective masters were contending for the
throne, ruined the peaceable citizens, under pre-
text of serving their particular party. The bro-



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 211

thers of Podmanin did not fail to profit by the
licence of so reckless a period ; and being as un-
compromising as they were fortunate, they ulti-
mately subdued the whole of the upper valley of
the Waag, to which they gave the name of the
Gespanschaft of Silein, and governed with arbitrary
sway.

Numerous complaints and expostulations were
made by those oppressed by their iron rule ; and
more than one admonitory letter was addressed to
them by the sovereign; but they disregarded both
the murmurings of the conquered, and the threat-
enings of the king ; and even in 1542, when they
were at length under sentence of outlawry for
their manifold aggressions, there was not a sufficient
force available in the province to carry the edict into
effect ; the resistance of the brothers sufficing to
render of none avail every effort of the royal troops ;
and had not dissension broken out between them, it
is impossible to calculate upon the results of their
unquenchable ambition.

In 1545, however, a feud so deadly in its nature,
that it broke away every fraternal bond, and changed
them from loving kinsmen into bitter foes, so para-



212 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

lyzed their strength, and weakened their resources,
that they were finally reduced to obedience, and
subjugated to the royal authority.

The cause of their disunion is thus described in
the chronicles of the time : —

Winter was approaching. The last clinging and
discoloured leaves were dropping reluctantly from
the forest boughs, and the frost- touched vegetation
was garbing the earth in a sombre and monotonous
drapery of russet ; the winds swept down from the
heights shrilly and angrily ; and the dancing river
had taken a leaden hue; when the two strong
Knights of Podmanin sat together before the ample
hearth of their castle of Bistnitz. Both were
sheathed in complete suits of steel armour ; and as
the fierce flames, which rose and fell in their dally-
ing with the huge pine-logs that fed the fire, flashed
over their tall and muscular forms, they seemed to
draw sparks of light from the scales of the gleam-
ing armour.

A table stood before them, on which lay their
trusty swords, side by side with a portly pitcher of
wine, and two antique silver drinking cups ; which
looked as though they had been originally destined



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 213

to a holier purpose than that which they now
served.

The brothers were in the full strength and beauty
of their manhood ; and had it not been for a fixed
ferocity of expression, and a cold haughtiness of
look, which betrayed an indifference to all interests
but their own, they would both have been strikingly
handsome. In person they greatly resembled each
other; and, amid all their evil quaUties, the perfect
unanimity which had always existed between them
had been the one only and holy bond that had
seemed to link them to their fellow-njen.

They were but recently returned from a success-
ful foray ; and for a time they talked complacently
cf its results, and consulted together on the arrange-
ments consequent upon them ; but at length John
exclaimed suddenly : —

" Now, curses on these changeful seasons, which
ever come athwart our brightest plans, and hold us
idle in our own halls like children and women,
when we should be up and doing, instead of letting
our joints stiffen and our armour rust. Here is the
winter on our backs again, threatening us with a
three months' imprisonment."



214 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

" We can, at least, curtail the term of our cap-
tivity by a bold start ere matters become worse ;"
answered Ralph: " How say you? Shall we hazard
one more venture, ere we hang up our battle-axes
till the spring ?"

" Do you think the project worth the risk ?"
asked the elder ; " We can defy hard blows, but it
is not so easy in our mountain-passes to set a snow-
storm at defiance."

" I am ready to make the trial ;" said the
younger composedly.

" So be it then, in the name of all the Saints !"
retorted John with a hoarse laugh ; '' I know a
certain Baron in Moravia who is overhoused, and
should be taught economy — He may be worth the
trouble of a lesson — so my plan is fixed ; but it
will be too small a matter to require two masters,
and you are not bound to follow me."

'^^ Nor shall I ;" said Ralph, as he stretched forth
his long limbs still more forward towards the
bright blaze : " I will on to Silesia, where I shall
probably be an unexpected guest at this season ;
although, if I have any luck, not an unsuccessful
one. And now that we are resolved, let us lose no



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 215

more time. In five days all may be prepared.
The names of such of our allies as will be most useful
to each may be easily called over, and warning
given to them to take up arms ; while there are few
of our own subjects* who require much time for
preparation."

As they decided in this conversation, so they
ultimately acted ; and at the end of a week each
had marshalled his forces, and commenced his
march.

Fortune, which ever seems by some strange
fatality to favour the wicked, was peculiarly propi-
tious on this occasion to Ralph ; for he had scarcely
reached the pass of the Jablunka when he fell in
with a carriage, surrounded by armed horsemen,
which he immediately attacked. The carriage con-
tained Girich of Lassenkowitz, an old Silesian
nobleman, and his beautiful and only daughter the
Lady Hedwig, who were on their way to Hungary,
guarded by a party of their retainers. The struggle
was of short duration : the strength of the adver-
saries being so great as to render the very effort

* In Hungary all vassals to a feudal chief are denominated
subjects.



216 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

made by the Silesians a mere voluntary act of mad-
ness ; for^ bravely as the vassals rallied round their
lord, who, aged as he was, drew his sword in de-
fence of his helpless child, there was not the most
remote hope of escape ; and thus, in less than a
moment, the hardy old Baron fell to the earth
smitten with a dangerous wound ; while his insensi-
ble daughter was torn from the carriage, and made
the spoil of the victor.

Sir Ralph of Podmanin, although by no means
susceptible of the softer emotions, was yet human ;
and, consequently, he could not look upon the
beautiful girl who lay senseless in his arms, with-
out experiencing a feeling equally new and incom-
prehensible ; and he exerted every energy to revive
her, while his associates and followers were pursu-
ing their work of plunder, and seizing upon every-
thing within their reach.

His too officious care at length succeeded : a
slight flush rose to the cheeks of Hedwig, and she
opened her eyes ; but it was only to be conscious
that her father lay stretched on the earth beside
her, his limbs rigid, and his gray hairs dabbled in
blood ; and with a deep groan, and a faint shud-



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 217

dering of her whole frame, she relapsed into the
fearful swoon from which she had just awakened.

The carriage having been pillaged, and no further
booty remaining to be obtained, the Knight com-
manded his party to remount ; and having placed
his fair prize in the arms of a sturdy horseman,
with strict injunctions to be careful of her safety, he
left the old Baron and his brave vassals, wounded
and helpless as they were, to their fate ; and instead
of pursuing his original intention of pushing on to
Silesia, gave orders for an immediate return to
Bistnitz.

So thoroughly had the followers of Podmanin
performed their business of plunder, that they had
not only secured the weapons of the old Baron,
and the jewels that they found upon his person,
but, owing to the costliness of their material, had
actually deprived him of his garments ; and thus,
when they abandoned him, as they believed, to die,
he had to contend, not alone with the smart of his
w^ound, but also with the damps of the night, which
were fast gathering about him when he awoke to
consciousness.

The spot where he lay was a deep hollow, one of

VOL. II. L



218 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

the most difficult portions of the mountain pass;
and his first feeHng when he had recalled his senses
was one of deep despair ; but he resolved to abide
his fate without a murmur, or any effort which could
not fail to increase his bodily suffering, and which
must only be productive of disappointment.

He had scarcely made this determination when
he remembered Hedwig, his pure, and fond, and
lovely child, and then indeed he gnashed his teeth
in impotent passion, as he mentally contemplated
her probable fate ; but the very horror of his own
thoughts gave him strength and courage, as he
vowed to himself, under the clear sky of heaven,
that he would strive to live, were it only for ven-
geance on her ravisher.

Under the excitement of this resolution he
dragged himself along the steep and rocky defiles,
leaving a track of blood upon the rock as he
writhed onward ; in the hope of being enabled to
reach the wretched hut of a forester which he
remembered to have passed on his way, and to
have made glad with the alms that he flung to a
woman, who, with three or four sunburnt and half-
naked children clustered about her, had stood with



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 219

dilated eyes and parted lips, staring in mute and
stupid wonder as his equipage approached the
hovel.

It was a desperate effort ; but the thirst for ven-
geance that was tugging at bis heart rendered him
for a time unconscious both of suffering and fatigue ;
and just as the dawn was breaking in the east, he
found himself, maimed and almost expiring, at the
threshold of the hut. Once arrived there, the excite-
ment of the attempt was at an end, and he relapsed
into helplessness ; but never once did his eyes
wander from the door of the miserable dwelling in
which was now centred all his chance of life.

Fortunately for the aged sufferer, he was not
fated much longer to endure the keen and biting
blasts which accompanied the dawn, as if to sweep
away the lingering vapours that still clung dankly
to the mountain side ; for ere many minutes had
elapsed, the hardy forester came forth with his rifle
in his hand, and his axe in his girdle, to proceed to
his daily toil.

Great was his consternation when he discovered
the appalling object which lay stretched before his
threshold ; and the exclamation that he made

l2



220 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

drew his wife to his side ; who, on approaching the
wounded man, was not long in discovering her be-
nefactor of the preceding day.

The recognition was serviceable to the poor suf-
ferer, for it augmented the care and zeal of the won-
dering and terrified peasants ; who, having covered
the old Magnate with some of their own coarse but
cleanly garments, laid him on a rude bed formed of
Indian-corn straw, and the skins of wild animals,
which had been shot by the forester ; supplied him
with such food as their hut afforded, and gathered
from his disjointed sentences a tolerably distinct idea
of the cause which had reduced him to his present
plight. They drove the children from the solitary
apartment that composed their dwelling to gambol
in the sunshine, lest their young voices should dis-
turb the invalid ; and then, with a prayer and a
blessing, they left him for a time to his repose, and
went forth to their labour.

When he awoke, the active mother was dis-
pensing to her little ones their mid-day meal of
black bread and grapes, keeping meanwhile a care-
ful eye on her patient, through the open door of
the hut; and no sooner did she discover that he



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 221

had ceased to sleep than she hastened to his side,
and with considerable skill dressed his wound, and
laid him in a position of greater ease. This done,
she dispatched her elder boy to the forest to sum-
mon his father, who was not slow in obeying the
call ; and who set forth within the hour to inform
the household of the Baron of the evil chance that
had befallen him. Early on the morrow his son,
a brave and noble youth, arrived with a strong
party of armed retainers, and a litter, in order to
remove his wounded parent ; which he did, after
having breathed a solemn vow to leave no effort
untried that might enable him to revenge the abduc-
tion of his sister.

The miserable Hedwig, meanwhile, was detained
a close prisoner in her chamber, of which her captor
kept the key ; and into which no one was permitted
to enter save the Knight himself, and one female
attendant, whom he on every occasion accompanied
to the threshold of the apartment, and then closed
the door upon her, until she made the signal that
her duties to the fair captive were performed.

And she was indeed a fair captive ; with eyes of
deep blue, fringed with long dark lashes, and locks



222 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

of paly gold waving over her shoulders, in those
rich and rounded volumes which art strives in vain
to imitate. Small of stature, but beautifully formed,
the Lady Hedwig at sixteen was the very dream
of beauty on which the most fastidious cavalier
might have loved to linger; while on the fierce
Knight of Podmanin her extreme loveliness pro-
duced so powerful an effect, that from the moment
in which she fell into his hands fray and foray were
forgotten, and he seemed to live only to keep watch
over the chamber that she inhabited.

But let it not be supposed that the coarse soldier
contented himself with keeping this jealous guard
over his treasure, without availing himself largely
of the privilege which it gave him to intrude his
unwelcome presence upon the prisoner. Little
formed to win a lady's love, despite his handsome
and martial appearance, from the rude and un-
seemly life which he had so long led. Sir Ralph
had also, in the case of the Baron of Lassenkowitz's
daughter, the additional disadvantage of being re-
cognised as her father's murderer; for of the old
Noble's escape from death neither the one nor the
other entertained hope or idea.



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 223

It was consequently with a feeling of the most
undisguised loathing and aversion that the Lady
Hedwig looked upon him ; and when on the second
day of her imprisonment at Bistnitz, the Knight not
only inflicted his presence upon her, but actually
talked to her of love in the style of a freebooter and
a ruflSan, the indignation of the fair girl was added
to her hate ; and the gentle young creature, who
had never hitherto been approached save with re-
spect and courtesy, rose from her seat with a dignity
so impressive, and a rebuke so keen, that the bold
chieftain, whom neither blood nor suffering could
appal, crouched under the flashing of her eye, and
the stern haughtiness of her deportment, and hur-
riedly left the room.

The truce was hollow, however; for no sooner
had the Knight passed from her presence, than he
cursed himself for a craven ; and ere he had tra-
versed half the length of the gallery hastily re-
turned to the apartment of his victim. He found
her seated with her head pillowed upon her hands,
deluged in tears, the hot and bitter tears of out-
raged innocence and conscious helplessness. As he
entered, she started up : and dashing back the long



224 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

curls which had fallen about her face, she waved
her hand to motion him back, as she said im-
periously :

** Not a step further. Sir Knight ! You, who in
your doughty chivalry make war on women, and
shame your spurs and your proud name by lawless
rapine and fierce aggression. Stand back, sir !
and say your second errand, be it what it may,
with speed, for I would be alone.*'

Sir Ralph laughed a mocking laugh: "You
queen it bravely, lady:*' he retorted; *'but you
forget that you are in a stronghold of the Pod-
manins, where their will is law, and their pleasure
the duty of those about them. I have already told
you that I love you "

*' Love me !" echoed Hedwig, in an accent of intense
disgust ; " Would a freebooter and a rebel persist in
talking to the Lady of Lassenkowitz of love ? We
have had enough of this already. I phght my troth
to no robber-chief."

" I do not ask so much ;" sneered her captor ;
*• We have little priestcraft to answer for at Bistnitz.
We are free mountaineers; and do not love to shackle
ourselves with any fetters, however light."



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 2*25

" How, sir ! " once more exclaimed the indignant
girl ; " Have you no fear of Heaven's thunder that
you dare talk to me thus ?"

"I fear nothing," was the reply.

"Then, may the Virgin save me!" murmured
his victim, sinking upon her knees; ''for on earth
there is no hope."

''^ Pshaw ! this is fooling;" exclaimed the Knight,
while with his muscular arm he lifted her from the
earth as the wind scatters the thistle-do\\Ti ; -' Listen
to me, maiden. I have already told you that I love
you — you are in my power — and I am not one
accustomed to contradiction. Opposition will be
idle ; for what have you to hope ? or with what will
you resist? You are the first woman who has ever
made the pulses of my heart quicken in her pre-
sence ; and neither tears nor prayers will avail you
here. I give you till to-morrow to reflect — but
from to-morrow you are mine.'' And so saying.
Sir Ralph of Podmanin turned a long lingering
look upon the quailing girl, and left the room, care-
fully securing the heavy door behind Inm.

The morrow came ; but the attendant who had
entered to attire the Lady Hedwig for the day, as

l3



226 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

was her wont, was overcome with terror when she
discovered her stretched across the floor on the very
spot where the Knight had left her, and where she
had lain all night insensible. On removing her
to her bed, the unhappy girl only recovered her
senses for a while to lose them again in the still
more painful delirium of fever ; and when her dis-
appointed and enraged captor next looked upon her,
she no longer recognised him, for her thoughts had
wandered back to her own happy home ; and she
talked of beautiful and peaceful things, of her birds
and flowers, her gray -haired father, and her gallant
brother ; and she called them by a thousand gentle
and endearing names, and warbled out sweet snatches
of familiar songs ; and looked so wildly beautiful amid
her malady, that even his cold heart was touched ;
and he bade the woman, who stood weeping
beside her, console her when she recovered con-
sciousness, with the assurance that he would not
again come into her presence until she should have
strength to listen to his arguments ; when, having
gained this unwonted victory over himself. Sir
Ralph strode to the ramparts, and with folded arms
and gloomy brow, his armour rattling as he moved



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 227

along, and his crimson plume waving in the wind,
sought to overcome the vexation which was gnawing
at his heart.

Once or twice he bitterly reproached himself for
what he was pleased to consider the womanish
weakness which had betrayed him into the promise
to which he had pledged himself; but the one virtue
of truth was yet left to him, and he had now no
alternative.

Another and another day succeeded ; and still the
precarious state of his captive, of which he was
careful to assure himself, banished him from her
presence; and at length, wearied by such unac-
customed inaction, and satisfied that the unfortunate
Hedwig could not elude his power, he resolved on
quitting the fortress, and making a visit to a neigh-
bouring chief who was one of the allies of his house.

This was not to be, however ; for scarcely had he
sprung upon his horse, when the well-known sound
of his brother's bugle awoke the echoes of the
mountain, and he saw the foremost of the party
defiling through the rocky and narrow pass.

Tightening his rein, and pressing his armed
heels into the flanks of his fiery Arab, he accordingly



228 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

shot through the arch, crossed the drawbridge, and
advanced to meet his brother, who recognising him
afar off, waved his hand in welcome, and pointed
significantly to the long train of animals laden with
plunder, by which he was accompanied. But not
even the spoil on which he looked, or the presence
of the brother whom he had so long loved, could
dispel the cloud which darkened his brow, conscious
as he was that for the first time he had a secret and
divided interest from his kinsman; and it was,
therefore, coldly and uncheeringly that he met the
gay and hearty greetings of the elder Knight.

In vain did the latter relate the great success of his
expedition, and all the circumstances by which it
was attended; he soon perceived that the thoughts
of Ralph were not engaged by the recital ; and that
although he made short and apposite answers, they
were rather the effect of habit than the result of
attention.

As soon as they reached the hall, and that they
found themselves for a few instants alone, John
earnestly asked the cause of his brother's gloomy
mood, but he was shortly and testily answered ; and
more surprised than before, he left the hall, and



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 229

went in search of some one who might solve the
mystery. It soon ceased to be such ; for the Cas-
tellan at once informed him of the presence of the
Lady Hedwig in the castle, and added, that since
her capture the younger Knight had become totally
changed, walking constantly on the rampart which
stretched below her chamber, and seeming careless
of all his former avocations.

Loud laughed the doughty Sir John of Pod-
manin at the idea that his stalwart brother could
be subdued by a woman ; and hurrying back to the
hall, with the merry smile still upon his lips, he
rallied him upon the new character he had assumed
of a love-sick suitor. But Ralph would brook no jest
upon the subject; and with a look which the elder
well understood, he bade him be chary of his words
when he chose this theme of converse, for that it
was one on which he would suffer no one to trench
rudely, and that he who did so should thence-
forward be to him a stranger and an enemy, even
were he his own brother.

" Nay, nay ; let us not quarrel for a peevish
girl;" said John, as he extended his brawny hand
in amity to his excited kinsman ; '' surely after



230 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

years of confidence and good fellowship it would
ill become us now to brawl about a woman.
Clear your brow, Ralph ; they are about to spread
the board ; and let us forget in a bowl of wine that
there is a petticoat between Bistnitz and Presburg."

But although he thus endeavoured to quiet the
jealous fears of his brother, the curiosity of John
was greatly roused. That Ralph, who had hitherto
looked upon the women whom they had occasionally
captured with an indifference amounting to con-
tempt, should have become thus enamoured of
his Silesian prisoner, appeared to the rough Knight
something so marvellous, that he immediately re-
solved to see the wondrous beauty who had wrought
the spell ; this, however, he soon found to be almost
impossible, for never was jailor more vigilant than
Sir Ralph to prevent all approach to his captive.

For a day or two John bore the disappointment
patiently, trusting that by some unlooked-for chance
he might outwit his brother, and accomplish his
object ; but the total want of occupation to which
he was subjected from the setting-in of the frost,
joined to the suspense and annoyance consequent
on this, the first contradiction to which he had



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 231

ever been subjected, at length overcame his better
nature ; and he \iltimately approached Ralph one
mornings and in an abrupt manner insisted on being
admitted into the apartment of the Lady Hedwig.

" When you are so, it shall be over my prostrate
body," said Ralph, coldly.

" Why, this is childish 1" persisted John, whose
temper was by no means improved by the resolute
tone and manner of his brother ; " All has hitherto
been common property between us ; and I have as
much right over this silly girl, as you have over the
booty which I have just won in Moravia at the risk
of my own life, and that of my followers."

'' Keep it, or divide it among your followers, as
you list ;" was the reply : '' no one shall look upon
the maiden save by my own sanction, and that I
am not likely to give lightly."

" How, Sir Ralph of Podmanin ! would you
dictate to your elder brother in his own hall?"
furiously exclaimed John ; " Do you dare to play
the despot to him of whom you should rather be
the vassal?"

'' I dare do anything to maintain my right."

'' Right !" once more pealed out John, whose



232 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

reckless violence was rapidly mastering his reason ;
" I appeal to all here present."

*' I admit no appeal," coldly interposed Ralph ;
" I abide by my own decision."

" On your own head be it then," said his brother ;
who, according to the fashion of the period, acknow-
ledged but one method of terminating a quarrel ;
and drawing his sword, he prepared to make the
hall a scene of fratricide, when some of the guests
interfered, and compelled both the brothers (for
Ralph had immediately followed his example) to
sheathe their weapons ; urging that they should not
suffer so insignificant au object as a woman to bring
feud between them.

Moodily and in silence the two knights reluct-
antly complied with the entreaties of their friends,
but their hearts were not in the reconciUation ; and
although they pledged each other at the mid-day
meal, their spirits burnt within them, and the bitter
work of hatred had begun.

It chanced that very morning that the attendant
of the Lady Hedwig had carried to her employer
the welcome intelligence that the health of the
maiden had become greatly restored by the quiet of



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 233

the last few days; and that ahhough her cheek
was still very pale, and that tears were for ever in
her eyes, she had recovered her strength sufficiently
to stand for hours at her casement, looking wistfully
towards the frontiers of Silesia; as though she
nourished a hope that deliverance would soon come
to her from thence, and that she was watching for
its messenger.

The news of her recovery, coupled with the
unfortunate hint that accompanied it, had ill pre-
pared Ralph for the scene which he aftenvards
enacted with his brother ; and the meal had scarcely
terminated when, knowing that the wine- cup was
always welcome to John, and that he was surrounded
by men who were well disposed to bear him com-
pany in a debauch, he resolved on making a visit
to his prisoner, and compelling her to submit to
his authority, ere his brother should have time by
any stratagem to rob him of his prize.

But Sir Ralph had reckoned hastily; for although
oil this occasion his brother drank deep, he did so
with a haste and impetuosity which soon caused the
wine to mount into his brain ; and he suddenly rose
from table with a fixed determination that no human



234 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

power should longer prevent his intrusion on the
presence of the unhappy prisoner. Having been
informed that his brother was at that moment in the
apartment of the Lady, he lost not a moment in
following him ; and as Ralph had never contem-
plated the possibility of his appearance at that time,
he had, according to his custom while with the
maiden, left the ponderous key in the lock ; and
thus, when the elder Knight reached the threshold
of the chamber, he found no impediment to his
entrance ; and flinging back the heavy door, strode
resolutely into the chamber.

Great was the rage of Ralph when, at the sound
of an approaching footstep, he turned and recog-
nised his brother, who, with his gaze fastened on
the beautiful and unhappy girl who was kneeling
in bitter agony at his own feet, was rapidly tra-
versing the floor, and making towards her. Mad-
dened at the sight, and without giving himself a
moment to reflect, he sprang upon the intruder, and
grasping him by the throat, would have strangled
him as he stood ; but he contended with no puny
adversary; and John, already mad with passion,
and heated with wine, retorted the violence so re-



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 235

sistlessly, that after a struggle as desperate as
it was unavailing, they both fell to the earth
together, locked in a foul embrace, in which on
either side the fiend seemed to have superseded the
brother.

The shrieks of the terrified Hedwig had, mean-
while, alarmed such of the inmates of the fortress
as chanced to be in the neighbourhood of her apart-
ment ; and several of the retainers rushing into the
room, the unnatural combatants were with difficulty
separated, gasping for breath, and nearly exhausted,
and borne away to their different chambers; but
every bond of affection had now been rent asunder ;
and each, as he paced to and fro the floor recalling
the events of the last hour, breathed only, lived
only, for revenge.

After a night in which neither had closed his
eyes in sleep, John sent the gauntlet of defiance to
his brother, and summoned him to a combat a
toutrance on the third day from thence. Ralph
replied by an assurance that he had been anticipated
in his own intentions, and that he joyfully accepted
the challenge, being unwilling only to consent to a
waste of time which to him appeared worse than



236 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

idle; and suggesting that the meeting should take
place within the hour.

This precipitation, however, became a subject of
intense alarm to the crowd of petty nobles by whom
the brothers were surrounded, and who felt the
probability which existed, that in tlie present ex-
cited state of the two Knights neither would escape
the combat with life, and that thus their own fate
would be irrevocably sealed ; for it was only under
the shadow of the name of Podmanin, and the pow-
erful protection of the brothers, that they could
pursue their career of outrage and violence without
incurring certain destruction. Thus they resolved
on using every effort to effect a reconciliation, and
few were the arguments which they left untried ;
but each failed in its turn, until one of the party
suggested that as the girl had been the cause of the
feud, she should also terminate it by choosing
between them.

After considerable difficulty, the brothers were
reluctantly induced to consent to this arrangement,
but it availed them nothing ; for the indignant and
outraged Lady of Lassenkowitz resolutely refused
to give her hand to either; and insisted with



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 237

haughty pertinacity, and a recovered courage, grow-
ing out of the dissension between her jailors, that
she should forthwith be restored to her family ; nor
could either threats or entreaties induce her to lend
herself to the odious and unprincipled proposal.

For a few moments all was once more discord
and violence, when suddenly the same individual
who had made the first suggestion, exclaimed bru-
tally : —

" Urge her no longer, my good lords ; leave her
to her obstinate pride, which it will be easy here-
after to quell, and decide the question by lot ;
swearing ere you do so, to abide by whatever chance
may betide.*'

Loud acclamation welcomed the advice, and it
was forthwith followed up. The lots were drawn,
and the daughter of the proud Baron Girich became
the property of Sir John of Podmanin ; and while
Ralph turned darkly aside, muttering a fearful
oath that he would yet frustrate the triumph of his
brother, the elder Knight informed the fainting girl
with a harsh laugh, that he gave her two days to
prepare for her bridal ; and that, meanwhile, un-
like the selfish lover from whom he had rescued



238 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

her, his friends were welcome to surround her with
their admiration, if they had time to spare in cour-
tesies to a weeping child who had been but too
much honoured by the fray that she had caused
between two bold knights ; and so saying, he raised
her from the floor, and despite her resistance,
pressed his coarse lips to hers, and bade her learn
obedience ere they met again on the morrow.

At day-dawn, however, intelligence was brought
to Bistnitz by one of their spies, that the Counts
John and George Szuniogh had been suddenly
called to the Imperial Court, and that they had
hastily quitted their Castle of Budethin with a
numerous retinue, leaving only a scanty garrison
in charge of the fortress. The possession of this
stronghold had long been an object of paramount
interest to the Knights of Podmanin ; for in addi-
tion to its individual importance, it commanded
from its peculiar position, the entrance to Silein ;
and, being situated immediately on the river, could
enforce tribute from every vessel frequenting the
town for the purposes of traffic; while, added to
this consideration, was the fact, that it was the only
fortress throughout the whole of the Upper Waag



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 239

of which they had not yet succeeded in making,
themselves masters.

The moment appeared favourable; and an im-
mediate attack being resolved upon, the arrange-
ments were made with an energy of purpose, amid
which John really forgot, and Ralph appeared to
forget, the very existence of the unfortunate Lady
Hedwig. Speed was above all things necessary, in
order that no rumour of danofer mi^ht reach the
brave chiefs of Szuniogh, and enable them to return
to the protection of their stronghold.

Accordingly on the third day, the brother? left
Bistnitz at the head of a formidable force, but
they had not travelled many hours when Sir Ralph
became so seriously ill that it was with difficulty he
coidd keep the saddle. He, however, for a con-
siderable time withstood the expostulations of the
elder Knight, who urged him to return, and put
himself under the care of the castle leech, for he
persisted in alleging that he should never forgive
himself if he were not at the taking of Budethin ;
but in another hour his indisposition had so alarm-
ingly increased, that he could contend w^ith it no
longer; and jdelding to the reasonings of his compa-



240 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

nions, and refusing the attendance of more than a
couple of his followers, he took a hasty and earnest
leave of the party, and turned his horse's head to-
wards Bistnitz.

For a time he rode listlessly at a foot's pace,
with his head drooping forward, and his arms list-
lessly crossed upon his breast, suffering his noble
Arab to choose his own path ; while the two swords-
men by whom he was followed speculated in a low
voice upon his sudden illness.

"Now, St. Stephen shrive them both !" said the
taller of the two ; " You may believe me, Istvan,
that he got an unlucky grip the day they wres-
tled together for that Silesian girl, and he will
mayhap die of it."

'* Of what ?" asked his companion with a grim
smile : " Of the grip or the girl ? for to me the
one seems to the full as likely as the other. I
would bet a tithe of the plunder of which this pre-
cious sickness has baulked you and me, Gabor, that
Sir Ralph of Podmanin is as whole of body as either
of us, though he may be somewhat sick at heart."

" How say you ?" commenced Istvan ; but

his question was suddenly cut short by the Knight



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 241

himself, who, after languidly turning his head to
ascertain whether his brother's party were yet in
sight, and satisfying himself that they had turned
an abrupt angle of the defile, and were entirely lost
to view, suddenly drew up his rein, flung himself
forward in the saddle, and striking his gallant barb
with the spur, bounded forward at a swift gallop
towards Bistnitz.

A meaning glance passed between the two re-
tainers ; and then, imitating the example of their
lord, they were in the next instant rapidly clearing
the space between themselves and their fortress-
home.

Great had been the delight of the Lady Hedwig
when she discovered the absence of the brothers ;
and the first ray of hope which had dawned on her
captivity, cheered her as she remembered, that could
she gain over the old woman who oflficiated as her
attendant, she might possibly effect her escape ere
their return. She accordingly begged her for the
first time to remain when, her duties accomplished,
she was about to retire from the apartment; and
having regaled her with a cup of Tokayer wine which
had long stood untouched upon her buffet, she

VOL. II. M



242 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

drew towards her a ponderous workstand, with
which she affected to be employed, and encouraged
the old woman to converse.

The garrulous old dame, nothing loth^ and eager
at once to conciliate the lady and to do her duty
towards her feudal lords, gossipped on under the
inspiration of the maiden smiles and the amber-
coloured cordial ; strangely blending her awkward
flatteries on the beauties of the captive, and her
panegyrics on the wealth, and power, and gene-
rosity, and prowess of the two absent knights ; and
although the heart of the timid girl sickened as
she heard their names, she nevertheless suffered
her companion to pursue the subject without re-
buke, in order not to startle her by any avowal of
disgust. Thus, half listening to the monotonous
voice of the attendant, and half absorbed by her
own anxious thoughts, sat the Lady Hedwig, bend-
ing gracefully over the tapestry frame; when a
heavy step upon the threshold of her chamber
caused her suddenly to look up ; and the blood man-
tled over her brow and bosom as she saw standing
before her, cased in armour, and heated with
travel. Sir Ralph of Podmanin ! A wave of his



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 243

arm drove the old serving- worn an from the cham-
ber; and then hastily approaching the maiden,
and seizing her small hand which he held forcibly
clasped in his own, he seated himself beside her,
and began to urge his suit with a vehemence that
at once aroused the spirit of the terrified girl.

'' For shame, sir 1" she said bitterly ; " Are you
not capable of honour and good faith even towards
your own brother ? Did you not pledge yourself
to the chance which was to decide my fate, as
though it had been that of a serfs daughter?
Unhand me instantly; or by the Virgin, I will
appeal to your own blood for the protection which
my murdered father can no longer afford to me !"

" Why do you taunt me by trusting rather to my
brother than myself?" urged Sir Ralph; " I have
become a changed man through your influence;
while John, though he disputed your possession
from jealousy of his privileges, does not even affect
to love you."

*' And for that at least I bless him !" said the
indignant Hedwig ; " for it will subject me to les
insult. I spurn your love with loathing ; and would
rather be the wife of the veriest churl on my father's

m2



244 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

land, than the bride of a noble without honour, and
a knight without chivalry."

'' Do not urge me beyond my patience ;" ex-
claimed Sir Ralph impetuously ; '' You are in my
power, and I know not why I refrain from exerting
it this very moment. Tremble, proud girl, if you
drive me to extremity."

** Cast not the blame on me ;" said the maiden,
as with sudden strength she wrenched away her
hand, and rose from beside him ; " Cast not the
blame on me, if you are a traitor even to your own
brother. I tell you, Sir Ralph of Podmanin, that
if you have still one true pulse in your heart, you
will not dare to play the ruffian in your own halls,
and wrong your brother's bride."

" You do not know me ;'' muttered the Knight
between his clenched teeth, as he grasped the Lady
Hedwig by the wrist with such violence that her
slight fingers appeared to be bursting beneath the
pressure ; " Mine you were, and mine you shall be
yet. I won you, and I will wear you ! Woman, my
love for you is gnawing away my heart-strings,
and withering up my energies. I have listened too
long to your idle taunts, for you have been beau-



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 245

tiful in your contempt, and therefore have I borne
it ; but the hour of forbearance is past. Away
with this idle fooling — Poor fly ! would you struggle
with Ralph of Podmanin ? " and the laugh was
that of a fiend, with which he flung his arm about
her waist, and drew her towards him.

A sudden thought flashed across the brain of the
persecuted girl. She ceased to resist ; and with a
second peal of laughter, more scornful than the
first, the Knight released her arm, exclaiming :
" So, so, you will hear reason, and my warning has
not been in vain.'' As he spoke he resumed his seat,
and she sank passively beside him.

•'^Why this is well;" he continued ; "Had you
been ever thus, you had spared sorrow to yourself,
and strife to me. But away with the past — you shall
now teach me how to play the lover;" and with
awkward tenderness he began to wreathe his fingers
among the clustering and golden locks which waved
over the shoulders of the maiden ; whose blanched
cheek, quivering lip, and restless eye, might have
convinced him, had he marked them, that she would
prove no placid victim.

*' And now to seal our compact on your sweet
lips;" he pursued, and was about to clasp her.



246 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

when by a sudden effort she wrenched his dagger
from its sheath, and bounding across the floor stood
firmly and defyingly before him. *^ Move but one
step towards me !" she cried passionately; ''but one,
and I will bury this weapon in my heart. I
swear it by Our Lady of Agony ! — a fearful vow
which none may break, and live."

" You dare not !" gasped out the Knight ; '' The
blade is poisoned."

" I thank you for the news ;" said Hedwig with
flashing eyes and crimsoned cheek; ''I shall the
sooner and the more surely be at rest. Now, coward,
will you be my murderer ?"

" Throw down the dagger, and I swear to leave
you in peace ;" replied Sir Ralph ; *' That is no
weapon for a woman's hand. Cast it from you,
and listen to me."

" Speak ;" said the Lady ; ** I must listen, for
I have no alternative ; but I will not put aside my
only hope of safety."

" I swear " commenced the Knight.

" Blaspheme not ;" broke in Hedwig impatiently ;
" or swear by the powers of evil whom you serve,
for the saints would reject your oath. If, however,
you are about to bid me put faith in you, I tell you



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 247

that all the vows your fertile spirit may invent
will never shake my purpose. I will 7iot trust

you."

'' Woman T' fiercely exclaimed the Knight, as he
rushed from the apartment ; " you shall yet rue
this hour. Fiend ! you shall pay me every instant of
this torture by a tear of blood."

Nor was the threat an idle one ; for Sir Ralph
of Podmanin no sooner left the presence of his vic-
tim, and flung off the spell of her beauty, than the
words which he had uttered in his passion became
prophetic of his purpose ; and he vowed a deep and
fearful vow, that if he himself could not possess the
maiden, his brother never should call her wife.

There was an easy mean of preventing this, and
as ready an agent ; and the Knight gnashed his
teeth till the blood burst from his lips, as he mut-
tered to himself: "Ay, so shall it be — "poison — and
her old waiting woman shall quench her last thirst
with the deadly draught — she at least wdll not dare
to resist my will."

His hellish resolution once taken, the false noble
became impatient to put it into effect ; the very idea
that his brother might return from Budethin while



248 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Hedwig still lived, and triumph over him by her
possession, maddened him, and aroused all his
worst passions. He knew that not a moment must
be lost ; and if at intervals the memory of her love-
liness, or the strength of his passion, swept across
his spirit and pleaded for mercy, he instantly re-
membered that armed as she was with his own
dagger, and resolute as he felt her to be in her
purpose, she was lost to him for ever ; and conse-
quently these passing weaknesses, as he taught
himself to deem them, only hardened his heart the
more, when he put them from him.

He hesitated for a moment whether he should
not again force himself into her presence, and by
persisting in his suit, drive her to the deed which
she had threatened, and thus clear himself of her
blood ; but this sophistry was too shallow to de-
ceive even him, evil as he was; while he instantly
felt that should his brother return and discover the
manner of her death, the fact of her possessing a
weapon, and that weapon proving to be his own
dagger, would suffice to renew the feud between
them ; while, should she die in her bed by poison,
he could assert, and if necessary, force her attend-



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 249

ant to swear, that she had swallowed it to escape
the threatened marriage.

Satisfied, therefore, that his original design was
the safest, and consequently the most judicious, the
cold-hearted Sir Ralph prepared to put it into
practice ; and having summoned the old woman
to his presence, and explained to her his purpose,
he placed in her hands a small phial containing a
liquid alike colourless and tasteless ; one of those
frightful and mysterious compounds then frequently
in use; with orders that at sunset on the morrow
it should be administered to the unhappy Hedwig.
Expostulation would have been not only idle
but dangerous, for those were not days in which
a vassal dared to question the will of his lord,
be it what it might ; and accordingly the aged
attendant took the death-dealing beverage from her
master, and repeated the oath of obedience which
he exacted from her.

The fulfilment of her task was easy ; for after the
evening meal the Lady was accustomed to swallow a
draught of clear cold water, which was daily served to
her by the old woman ; but notwithstanding a long life
passed in blind and implicit compliance with every

M 3



250 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

mandate of her imperious masters, a pang smote
upon the heart of the withered crone as she con-
templated the destruction of the young and beau-
tiful creature who confided in her, and by whom
she had never been addressed save in gentleness.
She too well knew, however, that from the will of
the Knight there was no appeal ; and ere she lay
down that night on her bed, she knelt and fer-
vently prayed that the saints would absolve her
from a crime, of which she was only the humble and
unavailing instrument.

The morrow, so big with fate for the daughter
of Count Girich, came at last. The dawn broke
brightly, and the risen sun flooded the earth and
the broad river with glory ; its cold but brilliant
beams glanced upon the hoar-frost, and tinged
every object with the hues of jewels, without pos-
sessing sufficient warmth to rob the slightest bough
of its pendant icicle; and the sharp elastic wind
swept keenly and healthfully across the sky, driving
before it the light masses of vapour that hung like
snow-wreaths on the deep blue of the frosty sky.

It was precisely one of those days when the very
fact of existence is an enjoyment ; and the captive



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 251

girl, forbidden the indulgence of exercise^ and
panting to inhale the bright freshness of the morning,
flung back her casement, and stood in her usual
attitude with her eyes turned towards her own loved
home, while the breeze scattered her golden tresses
far and wide, and gave a richer colouring to her
cheek.

A sound beneath the casement attracted her
attention, and as she cast down her eyes she
discovered Sir Ralph of Podmanin standing imme-
diately below her chamber with gloomy -brow and
folded arms. He looked up as she was preparing
to move away, and demanded in a harsh tone :
'' Do you relent ? It is not yet too late ;" but she
withdrew without vouchsafing any reply ; nor was
it until she heard the heavy foot- falls of the Knight
upon the crisped earth as he left the rampart,
that she ventured to return and close the win-
dow.

The apparition of her detested captor destroyed
at once the momentary calm which had crept
over the spirit of the lady, for it convinced her that
she was still the subject of his thoughts ; and it
was consequently with renewed uneasiness that she



25^ THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

seated herself to the solitary meal which was spread
for her at sunset by her attendant. Had she been
less occupied by her own thoughts she could not
have failed to remark the unusual trepidation of the
old woman, who repeatedly crossed herself as she
changed the dishes ; and hastily averted her head
whenever the gentle prisoner chanced to look
towards her.

Languidly as the Lady Hedwig partook of the
food which was placed before her, the repast at
length terminated, and she asked as usual for the
goblet of water, which was slowly presented to her
by her attendant. She was in the act of raising it
to her lips when the report of a rifle was heard, and
the warder's horn suddenly pealed out its warning
of an approaching enemy.

" The saints have heard my prayers, sinner as I
am !*' exclaimed the aged woman as she dashed
the goblet from the hand of the astonished maiden,
and flung herself vehemently upon her knees.
'' The Virgin, blessed be her name ! wills not that
you should perish. Ave Maria ! you are saved."

" What means this strange emotion ?" asked the
Lady, as she rose from her seat, and shook



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 253

away the water which had been scattered over
her dress.

"You are saved!" repeated the old woman;
" saved, when I thought that there was no help —
saved on the very threshold' of the grave."

Her extraordinary agitation betrayed the dark
secret to the quick perception of Hedwig. ''Tell
me ;" she said firmly, as she grasped the arm
of her quailing attendant ; " Did you offer me
poison ?"

A deep groan was the only reply, as her
repentant companion covered her face with her
spread hands, as though she did not dare to look
upon her intended victim. The heart-stricken girl
instinctively moved from beside her ; and casting
herself upon the sofa, gave way to the wretchedness
which assailed her, without a thought beyond her
own misery, or a speculation on the cause of the
hurr}^ and uproar which were going on within the
fortress.

Accustomed as she now was to the constant
turmoil of a marauding life, had she reflected for an
instant on the confusion which had suddenly taken
place in the castle, she would probably have attri-



254 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

buted it to the return of the elder Knight and his
turbulent followers ; and thus she abandoned herself
to the misery of her conscious helplessness without
even glancing from her casement, or heeding the
frantic gestures of the old woman who had taken
her stand beside it, and who was wringing her hands
in all the energy of terror and despair.

Suddenly the door of her chamber opened, and
as she looked up to resent the intrusion with which
she was threatened, she uttered a cry of joy, and in
the next instant was in the arms of her brother !

For a few moments neither could articulate a
syllable ; but they gazed upon each other with the
long-searching look of tenderness and love ; and then,
when each felt that it was indeed a blessed reality,
they gradually recovered some degree of composure,
and were enabled to converse, and to pour out their
gladness in words, as they sat side by side, with
clasped hands and eager eyes, almost fearing to relax
their hold, lest they might be again separated.

The tale of Hedwig was soon told, for her high-
hearted brother had felt that she was worthy to
return to the proud shelter of her father's roof from
the moment in which their eyes first met ; and her



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 255

story was but a record of suffering and resistance ;
but his own appearance in the very stronghold of
the fierce Knight of Podmanin required more
explanation ; and she listened with breathless atten-
tion as he dwelt on the secresy and caution with
which he had planned the project of her liberation ;
and marched his men in scattered parties until they
neared Bistnitz, which each had approached singly,
until under cover of the night they had all collected
beneath the western rampart.

This feat accomplished, he had taken the fortress
by surprise; for although Ralph instantly flew to
arms, and put himself on the defensive, his garrison
was so attenuated by the attack on Budethin in
which his brother was engaged, that he could make
no effective resistance. The enemy swarmed upon
the walls ; he had no rational prospect of assistance
from without ; and conscious, immediately that he
ascertained the identity of his assailants, that he
could expect no mercy at the hands of the Lady
Hedwig's brother, he fled at the first opportunity ;
and amid the confusion of the conflict contrived to
effect his escape, favoured by the darkness.

Early on the morrow, according to the fashion of



256. THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

the period, the fortress of Bistnitz was plundered of
all that it contained which was worthy of transport,
and instantly enveloped in a mass of flame. So
well, indeed, had the indignant retainers of the
Baron of Lassenkowitz performed their task, that
no human power could have sufficed to save the
noble stronghold from utter ruin; and as the bro-
ther and sister proceeded on their homeward jour-
ney, with hearts full to overflowing of hope and joy,
the reflection of the fire which they had kindled at
Bistnitz pursued them on their way.

While these events were taking place at his
favourite fortress, the elder Knight was rejoicing
at Budethin over his easily obtained success. He
was presiding at a well-covered board, surrounded
by his friends, and occupying the chair of the Count
John of Szuniogh, in the very act of raising a full
goblet to his lips, when, to his astonishment and
consternation, his brother stood before him, with a
dim eye and a troubled brow, the harbinger
of evil.

John clenched his hand violently, and a bitter
curse rose to his lips, as he learnt the fate of his
beloved Bistnitz ; but he lost not a moment in idle



THE BROTHERS OF BISTNITZ. 257

and inactive regret. Ere an hour had elapsed he
was once more in the saddle ; and leaving only a
sufficient garrision at Budethin to secure his con-
quest, he was soon galloping at the head of a
strong force to the rescue of his captured strong-
hold. He arrived, however, too late, for he found
nothing but a heap of blackened and smouldering
ruins ; and while writhing under the mortification
of the shock, he breathed a vow that he would
renew the edifice, were it only to obliterate the
triumph of the Baron Girich's son.

Bistnitz was accordingly rebuilt, but nothing
could restore the union of the two brothers. They
had learnt the possibility of a divided interest ; and
they had welcomed the lesson, without reflecting
that every feud between them must diminish their
strength. Their followers ere long became con-
scious of the schism, and attached themselves to
one or the other party, as interest or inclination
prompted; until at length their numerous allies
and retainers became split into two separate fac-
tions; and after having endeavoured for a time to
pursue each their own career of rapine and violence,
and finding themselves constantly worsted by their



258 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

adversaries, they ultimately resolved to surrender,
and do homage to the Sovereign ; and accordingly,
in the archives of the year 1546, there exists a re-
cord of their submission, and the extension of the
royal pardon to both brothers.

After this period they sank into comparative in-
significance ; and as they each died unmarried, the
formidable race of Podmanin became extinct at
their death.



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 259



CHAPTER VI.

" The sex has been revenged ,'' said the host gaily ;
^' for truly it must be conceded that the heroes of the
two last traditions have served but as dark shadows
to throw out the bright lights of female virtue and
courage. Allowances must be made, however, for the
remote period at which these outrages were per-
petrated ; for it would be scarcely fair to judge of
the moral attributes of a people, by the semi-barba-
rous usages of a bygone age."

*' And that remark," observed the Baron Prat-
nayer, " can in no instance in Europe be more cor-
rectly applied than to Hungary. Subjected through-
out long centuries to the incursions and aggressions
of heathen hordes, only succeeded by the sway of
the Infidels; and this, in its turn, resisted by arbi-
trary and feudal power, which sacrificed every other
consideration to that of conquest and triumph ; the
arts unknown, the sciences neglected, and literature
altogether forgotten or laid aside, save by a few



260 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

pale and obscure students, who, glad to avail them-
selves of any pursuit which would enable them to
endure with greater philosophy the tedious mono-
tony of the cloister, indulged themselves in an in-
efficient and desultory habit of thought and com-
position, as uninteresting and unsatisfactory to pos-
terity, as it must have been profitless to themselves.
Until the reign of Matthias Corvinus, the Hun-
garians had never shown that they could appreciate
literature, or make worthy additions to its hoards of
lore. Had he done no more than convinced them
of this fact, it would have sufficed to immortalize
his memory."

" And had successive sovereigns followed up the
great work;" said the host; "not even the spoli-
ation to which the country was subjected by the
Moslem would have sufficed to deprive the literati
of Hungary of the high place which they had earned
for themselves among the students of Europe. It
is surely no small boast, that so early as the year
1473 — only three-and-twenty years after the dis-
covery of the art of printing — a press was already
established at Buda ; while it is well known to all
who are conversant with ancient literature, that at



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 261

the same period Hungary was much further ad-
vanced in all that pertained to letters than even
England, to whose exertions in this particular branch
of knowledge all praise must be conceded."

"The subsequent retrogression;'' followed up
Pratnayer ; " must be, however, in a great degree
attributed to the fact that her foreign sovereigns
naturally caused a neglect of the native idiom of
Hungary. Neither the licentious court of Charles
Robert of Anjou, nor the high-toned and chivalrous
circle of Maria Theresa, used the Magyar tongue ;
while the infatuation of the Magnates for the grace-
ful gallantries and elegant refinements of the latter
became so great, that they not only sacrificed to its
intoxicating pleasures their natural language, buteven
that which should have been much dearer to them
— their natural independence. In later days, Russia,
by her encouragement and protection of the Sclavo-
nian writers, has done much to repress the genuine
language of the country ; not only by crushing the
energies of the Hungarians themselves, but by dis-
seminating throughout Europe, by means of her
own organs, a belief that the decay of the rival idiom
was consequent on its inferiority and meagre re-



262 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

sources ; when, in point of fact, its copiousness and
variety, and its unusually harmonious utterance,
are alike remarkable."

'^ That is, at least, a liberal admission from a
German," smiled the host.

"We can afford to make it;" was the reply;
'' for as regards flexibility of construction, and
wealth of expression, no European tongue surpasses
our own ; while it is only such foreigners as have
accustomed their ears to the Austrian dialect, who
accuse it of harshness and want of melody ; but,
Prussian as I am, I do not for a moment venture to
institute a comparison of sound between our tongue
and your own."

" I trust, indeed, that we may now look forward
with some confidence to literary progression ;" said
Palffy ; " The establishment of an University, how-
ever comparatively imperfect it may be for the mo-
ment, was a great point gained ; and one which can-
not fail to exert a wholesome and encouraging effect
upon the country. Had our military college only
been suffered to exist as a national institution ; and
had Austria forborne, by seeking to render it a mere
German academy, to crush it at the very moment



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 263

when it held out so fair a promise, we should have
good and legitimate cause of self-gratulation ; while
even as it is, the Diet has immortalized itself more
than once by making a vigorous stand to expel the
Latin idiom from our public assemblies ; and we
have only to prove true to ourselves, by adopting
it universally as our household tongue, instead of
degrading ourselves by volunteering the decay of
this portion of our nationahty, in order to show to
all Europe, as well as to demonstrate to our pos-
terity, that *^the Magyar slave, Eurydice,' as
Martonfi once called our national language, had
we thought proper to avail ourselves of its re-
sources, might have enabled us from the first to hold
ourselves independent of all foreign idiom."

*' You have already glorious promise among you ;"
said the Prussian Baron ; " and despite all the
efforts which have been, and still are, made lo
blind other countries to your rapid progression in
literature and science, the genius of your land will
ere long assert itself. The difficulty of attaining
your national tongue has deprived many ingenious
writers here of the benefit of translation into other
languages: but that is an evil which you are



264 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

rapidly overcoming among yourselves, by acquiring
those of your neighbours, and thereby enabling
your compatriots to find translators on the spot ;
an advantage which, far from proving of merely
individual benefit, will ultimately assert itself as an
undeniable national good. Hitherto, the trifling por-
tion of your literature which has found its way beyond
the Austrian frontier has been so clipped and crippled
by the censor, as not to merit a second dilution ; and
thus the very names of the Hungarian literati are,
as yet, scarcely known beyond the banks of the
Danube ; but this cannot be the case for ever."

" We accept your generous prophecy ;" said the
host ; ** but we must not forget that we are violat-
ing the rules of our little society, and that M.
Szapary promised us a leg^end of his lordly race.
Glad, indeed, shall I be when the day comes on
which, told in the Magyar dialect, it will be intelli-
gible to all who hear it ; but we must be satisfied
to bequeathe this proud prospect to our children ;
and to content ourselves with listening to it in the
language which is dear to me, were it only that it
is that of one who so well advocates the interests of
Hungary."



THE RANSOM. 265

As the host spoke, he glanced towards the Baron
Pratnayer, who answered the compliment by a
warm pressure of the hand which was extended to
him ; while M. Szapary, perceiving that the party
remained silent, and in the attitude of listening, at
once commenced the episode so honourable to his
ancestors.

THE RANSOM.

Peter Szapary, an ancestor of the present Counts
of that name, was the representative of a noble and
chivalrous family, whose origin is lost in the com-
mencement of the second era of the Hungarian
sovereigns. Although naturally of an amiable and
gentle disposition, he yet nursed a deep and uiidying
hatred towards the Infidels who had so fearfully
devastated his native country.

In his infancy he had been hushed to sleep by
ballads of love and w^ar, in which the Christian war-
rior universally carried off both the lady and the
victory. In his boyhood he had sat at twilight be-
side some old follower of his house, whose long gray
hairs and many scars had w^on him honour in the
eves of the brave boy ; and listened to wild narra-

VOL. II. N



266 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

tives of Turkish cruelty and knightly prowess, until
his heart swelled and his brow burned at the recital.
Scarcely had he gained his spurs, nor had he
yet attained his twentieth year, when, in 1650,
he followed one of his noble kinsmen on an
expedition against Csakvar, which the Christians
fondly hoped to carry by a coup -de-main. The In-
fidels were, however, prepared for the asr^ault ; the
attempt, boldly as it was executed, failed ; and the
young Count Szapdry, whose impetuous bravery
had led him into the very teeth of the enemy, was
struck down by a Turkish lance, and rescued with
extreme difficulty by a band of devoted friends, so
severely wounded as to cause great apprehensions
that he would not survive his injuries.

But Szapary had youth, hope, and a good cause
to support him through his suflerings; and too
high a heart to quail at personal danger. He
amused his hours of sickness with dreaming of his
battles yet to come; and vowing new vengeance
against the crescent of the Moslem. His good
weapon was ever within reach of his hand ; and as
he occasionally drew it from its scabbard, and
reverently pressed his lips to its flashing blade, he



THE RANSOM. 267

swore to himself never to tarnish its histre by
cowardice or dishonour.

When strength returned to his limbs, and vigour
to his brow, the young Knight began anew to
search for occasions of distinguishing himself in the
field; and in those stirring times, when the foot of
the patriot was ever in the stirrup, and his hand
ever on his lance, these were seldom wanting under
leaders of tried valour and well-earned fame.

When the death of his father made him the
head of his proud house. Count Peter Szapary
took possession of his extensive estates in the neigh-
bourhood of the contested city of Buda, towards
which the eyes and hearts of all the Magyar
chivalry were fondly turned. His friend and neigh-
bour was Count Adam Batthyany, who subsequently
attained to the highest dignities in the kingdom ;
and they were worthy to be friends, for each was
high-hearted, chivalrous, and vowed to the holy
cause of Christianity and freedom. And well did
they love each other !

Brothers both in spirit and in arms, they seemed
to have but one soul, and one existence ; and to-
gether they performed such deeds of valour against

N 2



268 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

the Infidels as made their name a glory to their
own land, and a terror to their enemies.

The greatest sufferer from their bold daring was
Hansa Bey, then in command at Erd ; who was
for ever subject to sudden attacks, which thinned
his ranks, and crippled his means of defence. He
lost soldiers, ammunition, provisions, and money ;
in short, he lived in perpetual terror, without being
able to devise any method of ridding himself of his
persevering and hostile neighbours.

Enraged at their constant incursions, and his own
incompetency to terminate them, he vowed against
the two friends all the bitterness of a Moslem's
hate, should the opportunity of revenge ever present
itself; but for a time it seemed as though they were
gifted with impunity, and the haughty Turk nursed
his wrath until it overflowed.

Then it was that Fortune, as if weary of be-
friending the valiant Magyars, suddenly declared
for the Moslem. Szdpary, at the head of his little
squadron, fell into an ambuscade ; and despite his
own efforts, and those of his gallant friend, was
eventually made prisoner by the Turks, covered
with wounds, and insensible from loss of blood.



THE RANSOM. 2H9

Great was the rejoicing in the camp of the In-
fidels when the identity of their captive was pro-
claimed ; but none gloated over his triumph like
Hansa Bey. His most formidable enemy was in
his power ! His revenge was sure ! The condition
of Szapary was, however, so precarious, that the
Turk could only solace himself for a time by pouring
out upon the Christian captive all the contemptuous
epithets with which the language is rife. His wounds
were imperfectly dressed, in order to prolong his
life ; and when he was slowly recovering, he was
subjected to the degrading and torturing punish-
ment of the bastinado, and then marched under a
strong guard to Buda, and delivered over to the
Vezir ; with a letter in which his name was branded
with abuse, and his actions detailed with a ferocity
calculated to heighten and embitter the animosity
of his new master.

The missive failed not in its effect. The Pasha
smiled as he glanced From the parchment to the
prisoner ; and Szapary read in that tiger-smile an
earnest of his fate. He was flung into a noisome
dungeon, impervious to every ray of light, and fur-
nished only with a wretched pallet, of which the



270 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

straw had begun to perish beneath the heavy damps
of the subterranean, and emitted a suffocating
odour. His ill-dressed wounds opened afresh be-
neath the influence of this pestilential atmosphere ;
and for three horrible days and nights the wretched
captive suffered tortures for which language has no
words.

But it was not the intention of the Vesir to allow
his prisoner to escape him so soon by death : and
accordingly, when it was announced to him that
the Christian, if thus abandoned, could not long
survive, he gave immediate orders that he should
be removed to a less loathsome prison, and that his
wounds should be tended with the greatest care.
The Infidels had a double purpose in wishing to
reserve him to tortures and to indignities — they had
a heavy debt to pay for the loss and mortification
which he had brought upon their nation ; and they
hoped also by these means to enhance the ransom
which should be offered by his friends.

Who cannot estimate the horrors of captivity to
the Infidels during their palmy days of triumph
and of power ? The most disgusting offices — the
hardest and scantiest fare — the most squalid rai-



THE RANSOM. 271

ment — and the most degrading tasks, became the
fate of the young hero who had been loved and
honoured in his land from his boyhood up !

And yet there scarcely needed any augmentation
of suffering to the stricken Szapary, beyond the
pang of seeing himself unarmed and helpless
among the enemies of his nation : and when at
some chance moment he could crawl away from
his tyrants, and seated in a lonely corner upon the
earth, with his face pillowed in his hands, think
upon all that he had once been, and that which he
now was, his own heart tortured him far more than
the dastard blows of his cowardly oppressors.

Nevertheless, he loved those moments of self-
communion, bitter as they were ; for then rose
before him the vision of his wife — the young, the
fair, the noble maiden, whom he had won from a
host of suitors : nor less dear, that of his infant
son, in whose eager hand he had once hoped to
place the first weapon — whom he had looked to
lead to his first field — and into whose young spirit
he had trusted to breathe the burning valour of his
own. And then he saw around him troops of
valiant friends, with Adam Batthyany at their head ;



272 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

and he heard the neighing of war-horses, and the
clashing of steel ; and his heart bounded, and his
brow burned again with joy, until he was aroused
from his vain dream of tenderness and glory by a
rude blow or a coarse oath ; and once more stood
before his Moslem masters, a captive and a
slave.

The frequent visits made by Hansa Bey to his
friend the Vezir never failed to augment the suffer-
ings of Szapary. Some new and ingenious method
of torment always followed close upon his presence ;
and it was consequently never without a sinking of
the heart that the wretched prisoner learnt his arrival
at Buda. But he bore the cruelties and indignities
heaped upon him with the firmness of a Christian
hero, and never stooped to sue for milder treatment.

Thus it was that on one occasion, when Hansa
Bey was walking in the fair garden which
stretches beside the fortress, and where the unhappy
captive was employed in tending the flowers, and
that he asked him in a tone of bitter irony how he
found himself at Buda, and whether the air was
conducive to his health, Szapdry made no reply;
which so exasperated his cowardly conqueror tl:at



THE RANSOM. 273

he could not controul his rage, and exclaimed pas-
sionately : " Dog of a Christian ! You have not yet
been made to feel your downfall, and you dare to
brave your masters; but I swear by the Prophet
that I will make you kiss the dust, and grovel at
ray feet. What are you beside the victorious Mos-
lem but a beast? and as a beast shall you labour
for your lords!''

Nor was the threat an idle one ; for the morrow
saw the noble Magyar, despite his struggles and his
indignation, harnessed to a common plough, the
task-brother of an ox !

This last indignity broke the proud spirit of the
captive. He thenceforward looked up to heaven
without hope, and upon his persecutors without
dread. He bore the bastinado without a groan, for
mere corporeal suffering had no longer a pang for
him ; and he submitted to his fate with an apathy
which is the handmaid of despair.

Let it not be thought, however, that the brave Bat-
thyany had forgotten his friend during his frightful
captivity. He had already entered into negociations
with Hansa Bey with an energy which only con-
vinced the vindictive Turk of the value attached to

N 3



274 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

his prisoner, and the consequent profit which he
might derive from the circumstance ; and accordingly
he dictated the reply of the Vezir, who fixed the ran-
som of the Hungarian hero at thirty thousand florins
of silver; a sum not to be easily collected in the
impoverished state of the country at that epoch.

The answer was indeed so discouraging, that
little hope was entertained of Szapary's deliverance
through this medium. In vain did his devoted wife
sacrifice her jewels, reduce her establishment, dimi-
nish her household, urge her dependants, and be-
seech her friends — she was still far from amassing
the amount required by his insatiable captors ; but
nothing could damp the energies of the faithful
wife and the determined friend. All the property
of the prisoner and his brother-in-arms which could
be made available, was sold ; the contributions of
his fellow Magnates were collected ; and yet little
more than a moiety of the required sum was re-
alized. Even his peasants contributed their mite ;
and still all efforts had proved abortive, when the
tenantry and vassals of the captive Magnate re-
solved to make a general appeal to the nation, to con-
tribute to the restoration of their beloved Suzerain.



THE RANSOM. 275

Despite, however, the combined exertions of the
heart-broken Countess, the anxious friend, and the
faithful vassals of the unhappy Szapary, the desired
end was still unattained ; for half the country was in
the power of the enemy, and the remainder impo-
verished by pillage, and rather requiring assistance
than enabled to afford it ; and meanwhile the Turks
refused to listen to any other terms. But a power
more mighty than that of man was to work out the
deliverance of the captive.

The spies of the Count Batthyany discovered that
an Aga of high rank, and charged with dispatches
of great importance to the Vezir at Buda, was on
his way from Constantinople, with a numerous
suite; and the devoted friend swore upon his
naked sword, that he would peril his life to capture
the ambassador, and save the prisoner. The vow
which he made was received and registered; and
having ascertained the road by which the Aga was
to travel, he placed himself in ambush on his path
with all the trusty followers whom he could muster,
and awaited with a beating heart the approach of
the Moslem messenger.

The Aga soon appeared with a considerable



276 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

suite, and the Christian noble threw himself across
his path like a hungry lion. The combat was de-
sperate. The Turks fought manfully, in emulation of
their chief, who would not surrender, hopeless as his
situation soon became ; but whom it was nevertheless
difficult to secure, as the Christian Count had forbid-
den that a blow should be aimed at the Aga himself,
being anxious to take him alive. Thus the battle
became bloody in the extreme. As fast as a Moslem
threw himseh'before his lord, he was hewn down ; and
the spot on which they fought was soon covered with
the slain, and slippery with gore.

But Batthyany paused not to contemplate the
havoc. He knew that the freedom of his friend de-
pended on the capture of the Aga, and he fought on
like a demoniac. Fortune at length favoured him ;
the horse of the Aga was shot through the heart,
and fell prone to the earth, carrying his rider with
him ; and in the next instant the Moslem noble was
the prisoner of the Christians.

The gallant band paused for no purposes of
plunder; they left the costly baggage of the Turk
to become the booty of the next passer-by, and gal-
loped off to secure the safe keeping of their prize.



THE RANSOM. 277

The Vezir no sooner learnt the capture of his
illustrious friend and companion in the Faith, than
he proceeded to oflfer terms for his release : but
Batthyany fixed it at a sum so immense that the
Turk was unable to meet the demand. Negoci-
ations were accordingly set on foot ; and the Christian
Knight at length terminated them by declaring that
he would exchange the Aga against Count Szapary,
or that he should remain his prisoner.

Despite the reluctance of the Vezir and the angrry
opposition of Hansa Bey, these terms were ulti-
mately accepted ; for the Moslem noble was a man
of rank, and his captivity was a heavy blow to his
friends. The day and hour were fixed ; the con-
tracting parties met on a given spot, and there the
barter of life for life was made.

The Vezir uttered a hearty " Inshallah," as the
Aga moved slowly towards him ; but as Batthyany
sprang from his saddle to embrace his adopted
brother, he started back in doubt, and for an instant
suspected treachery. With difficulty could he be-
lieve that the wan, emaciated, feeble wretch before
him, with bloodshot eyes, elf-locks, and tangled
beard ; clad in rags, and worn down with miseiy ;



278 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

was indeed his gallant friend Peter Szapdry; he
for whose love fair women had sighed in secret, and
of whose strength and daring his whole nation had
made a boast.

One long look, however, sufficed to convince him
of the fact ; their eyes met — their souls went with
them — and after a separation of three long, weary,
melancholy years — years of torture to the one, and
of anguish to the other, Adam Batthydny and
Peter Szapary were once more locked in each other's
arms.

The tenantry and vassals of the ransomed captive
had assembled in a body to welcome back their
Suzerain ; and as they caught a distant glimpse of
the gallant band among whom they knew that he
was to return, they raised his battle-cry, and gal-
loped madly towards him, pealing it out in tri-
umph; but when the uplifted hand of the Count
Batthyany arrested their wild speed, and that they
reined up their panting horses, and looked upon
the wreck of their beloved lord as he supported
himself with difficulty in the saddle, the triumphant
shout died away into a death-like silence ; and many
a brave head was bowed so low that the plumes of



THE RANSOM. 279

the Kdlpag by which it was surmounted, served to
conceal the tears that streamed from eyes which had
never looked to feel a moisture more.

There was no feasting in the halls of Szapary that
day, although the board was already spread ; but
there was the clanging of weapons against the stone
pavement of the church even till nio^ht-fall ; for they
who were to have been amon^ the revellers had
turned their steps towards the house of God instead
of the house of feasting ; and had offered up silent
prayers instead of noisy congratulations.

And meanwhile Szapary was seated once more at
his own hearth, with his heart-stricken wife on a
low stool at his feet, his friend beside him, and his
boy between his knees ; grasping with trembling
and unsteady fingers his weapons and his armour,
as though the contact brougrht with it an unima-
ginable joy. But the smitten warrior could as yet
handle them only among friends; for the exhaus-
tion of his neglected wounds, his heavy chains, and
his ulcerated feet, had tamed him into childish
weakness; and it was only the iron nature of his
vigorous constitution which ultimately secured to
him a slow and painful convalescence.



280 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Scarcely had Szapary again began to indulge
himself in the warlike visions which he so much
loved, when a rumour reached him that a powerful
army, commanded by the valiant Duke of Lorraine,
and several other famous warriors of high rank,
who had already signalized themselves at the
siege of Vienna, then only just raised, were on the
march to wrench from the Infidels the capital of
the Apostolical King.

No Hunofarian could remain inactive at such a
moment; and least of all a spirit like that of
Szapary. The enterprise was sacred ; it gave
opportunities too dear to the brave to be overlooked
or unheeded ; and despite the lingering weakness
which still oppressed him, he sprang into energy
at the news, as the noble stag-hound rouses at the
horn of the hunter. Life itself seemed to begin
anew for the gallant JMagyar; every nerve was
strengthened, every muscle restrung; and his patriotic
heart beat high as he contemplated the glory to be
won by the chivalry of Christian ism.

" Talk not to me, my friends ;" he exclaimed ; *' of
sufferings and of trials that are passed. I mourned
over them while they bowed me down ; but the



THE RANSOM. 281

tempest rends not for ever the mountain-oak ; nor
does misfortune burst for ever above the head of him
who fights for liberty and for his country."

The tears of his beloved wife equally failed to
deter him as the argiiments of his brother-nobles.
*' You could not love a coward ;" he said reproach-
fully, as he pressed her hand to his lips ; " Deceive
not your own heart ; you come of a brave race,
and you could not ! Would you see the father of
your boy dishonoured? Little would then remain
to do, for shame would kill more surely than the
Turkish scy****rs; and you would be the first to
assert the high blood of your ancestors, and to say
' Let Szapary die, for he has outlived his honour.' ''

From this hour the hero was as one whose youth
has been renewed by some wondrous magic; he was
for ever in the saddle, marshalling his vassals, and
urging them to sustain and to revenge their master.
He spoke to them too, and he spoke eloquently — for
his soul was on his lips — of their thrice-holy Faith
which had so long been trampled by the Infidel \
and he bade them fight as brave men should, even
to the death, for their God and their Fatherland !
And then he flung himself into the arms of



28^ THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

Batthyany, and murmuring •' If I fall, be a brother
to my wife, and a kinsman to my children" — he
turned away to superintend the progress of his
men-at-arms.

At length all was prepared ; and accompanied by
Batthyany, Szapary departed for the camp of
Lorraine; his high heart exulting as his path was
for ever crowded by groups of his countrymen
bound for the same glorious goal.

The result of the 2nd of September, 1686, has
filled one of the noblest pages of European his-
tory, and needs no detail here beyond what may
be necessary to shadow out the fortunes of our two
Magyar heroes. The battle had been a Voutrance,
for the possession of the fortress was of vital import-
ance to each party ; and thus when it was ulti-
mately recovered by the Christians, the slain were
counted by thousands, and the prisoners by hundreds.

Among the latter was the enemy of Szapary ; the
haughty Moslem who had drained his life-blood,
and battened on his torments ; the vindictive Hansa
Bey, who had been called to Buda by the Vezir
to reinforce the failing garrison.

When the fight was over, the city taken, and



THE RANSOM. 283

comparative calm once more established, the con-
querors celebrated their victory by a solemn service
in the church ; and thence the nobles proceeded to
take their places at a splendid banquet, hastily
spread beneath the beaming of a thousand lamps,
whose light was flashed back from glittering
weapons, and flashing jewels. As the feast drew
near to its conclusion, Lorraine bade the excited
Szapary relate to him the circumstances of his
long captivity. He was obeyed ; and although
the tale was told with a simplicity which tended
rather to soften than to exaggerate the cruelty of
which he had been the victim, the Captain-General
heard it with a knit brow, and a burning cheek.

" The day is ours once more, brave Magyar !"
he exclaimed when the tale was ended ; " and
Hansa Bey is in the power of the Christian. He
is yours, Count Szapary. Do with him as you
will."

" I thank you for the gift, thrice-noble Duke;"
was the reply of Szapary ; *' You could not have
bestowed on me one richer, or more welcome."
And with these simple sentences he turned away to
listen to the ingenious devices of torment suggested



284 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

by the nobles about him for his captive enemy.
He did not, however, join in the discourse; but
looked from one to the other as each spoke in turn,
sadly and musingly ; and meanwhile a servant in
the hall, who had been won by the gold of Hansa
Bey to bring to his dungeon any tidings which he
might be able to gather of his probable fate, stole
to the cell of the Moslem, and acquainted him with
the transaction by which he had become the per-
sonal prisoner of the Count Szapary. The Turk
uttered not a word; but his head sank upon his
breast ; and his breath came quick and short, as
though a feeling grappled at his heart that smo-
thered its pulsations.

Only a short hour elapsed ere the bolts of his
prison-chamber were withdrawn, and the two friends
stood before him.

'' Dost thou recognize me, Bey?'' asked a well-
known voice ; *' I am Peter Szapary ; and I come
to tell thee that thou art now mine, body and soul."

" Thou art tardy with the tale ;*' answered the
Moslem moodily ; '' I learnt the news an hour
back ; but he who gave Hansa Bey to the Christian
slave, knew not of what ****l he was made.''



THE RANSOM. 285

" Canst thou guess thy fate ?" asked the Count
calmly.

The Moslem smiled in bhterness. " It needs no
astrologer to read it ;" he said in the same cold
tone ; '* thou wouldest work out thy revenge/'

" Bey !" exclaimed the Magyar ; '^ thy thoughts
deceive thee ; a Christian seeks not for revenge. We
have been fierce foes and bitter enemies, but all
that is past — Thou art free — free without ransom or
conditions." ' ^"^'^^

. " Tell me that I dream !" faltered the prisoner,
roused out of his national apathy, and grasping the
arm of his generous deliverer. *^ You mock me !
only tell me that you mock me ! There lives not the
man on earth capable of such an act as that of
which you speak."

Szapary persisted, however, in his assurances,
and brought Batthyany forward as his pledge. " As
a man, and as a soldier;" he said solemnly; "1
might, indeed, have sought revenge ; but the re-
ligion of a Saviour forbids all human vengeance —
The Son of God not only taught his followers to
pay back evil with good, but himself set the glorious
example by praying for his murderers ; and in his



286 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

name I once more tell you, Hansa Bej;, that you
are free."

" Too late — too late !" exclaimed the miserable
captive, as he flung himself on the earth and
clasped the knees of Sz^p^ry : " I cannot live to
profit by so bright a lesson; for my heart vs^hispered,
when they told me that I was in the hands of him
whom I had wronged so deeply, that hope was put
far from me. I am a dying man; the burning
tide that rushes through my frame like living fire,
and leaps about my brain as if to sear it into mad-
ness^ runs poison through my veins — my hours are
numbered, and they are few; but there may yet be
time to show me how to find the God who taught
so rare a virtue to the Christian ; that 1 may die
with his name upon my lips, and waken in his
paradise."

Szapary lingered not an instant in the dungeon ;
and ere many minutes had elapsed the dying Turk
was surrounded by priests and physicians. The first
had not a moment to lose, and the latter were use-
less ; but the conversion was nevertheless accom-
phshed. The baptism of the Moslem was instantly
followed by the last sacraments; and Hansa Bey was



THE RANSOM. 287

declared to have been plucked from perdition by the
zealous churchmen who had assisted at the cere-
monies; while Count Peter Szapary became in the
same hour the sponsor and the chief mourner of
his ancient enemy.



288 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.



CHAPTER VI.

" You have repaid my ballad with usury, Sza-
pary ;" said Nicholas PalfFy ; " and would have
succeeded in proving to us, had the conviction been
wanting, that the men of your race are as brave and
chivalrous as the women are gentle and beautiful.
In good sooth, you have done your noble ancestor
justice."

" He deserves it at the hands of all who bear
his name;" replied Szapary; *'for we have reason
to be proud of him. Nor am I sorry that while re-
calling his memory I have for a while transported
the party beyond the district of the Waag, for it
would almost seem as if that particular portion
of Hungary had absorbed most of her exciting
memories."

'' It is not wonderful that such should be the
case;" said Pratnayer; *' for which of us has
travelled through a Roman Catholic country with-
out having remarked how judiciously every founder
of a religious house has erected his edifice in the



THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE. 289

most lovely nook of the neighbourhood ? Some
smiling valley, where wood and water, and vine-
yards and sunshine, make a worship of the works of
nature to the pious, and a source of profit to the
worldly ? And upon the same principle, the first
invaders of the country naturally sought to establish
themselves in the most picturesque and prolific
spots, whence they might extend their power over
the less promising districts, without risk or incon-
venience. Unable to discriminate, save on the mnre
surface of things, every enemy that has descended
on Hungary has successively been fascinated by
the precincts of the Waag ; and thus it has become
the g^reat emporium of romance and adventure.
Scarcely a mountain-peak rises above it which is not
crowned with a mouldering stronghold, whose me-
mories have survived it ; while there is no doubt
that the valley itself is replete with these, did any
one consider it expedient to collect them."

" You are right. Baron;" said Palflfy; ''every
stone about the Waag has its story ; and I can tell
one of peasant life which I picked up, if indeed
the ladies care to hear it, that struck me at the time
as worthy of remembrance."

VOL II. o



290 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

The .offer was immediately accepted ; and Palffy
accordingly told the tale of —

THE MARGITTA ROCK.

The beautiful valley of the Wdag, and its cir-
cling chain of mountains, are alike rich in legendary
lore ; and it would seem by the dark character of
many of the old traditions connected with that most
lovely portion of all Hungary, as though man, with
his fierce pride and his base passions, had sought to
mar their brightness by terrible associations; for
scarcely does one tale treat of love, or innocence, or
joy. All are dimmed, if not darkened, by records of
violence and crime, such as surely never should
have been engendered and indulged amid scenes of
so pure and calm a nature.

Where the sliallow and picturesque raft, gliding
down the rapid current of the river, after passing
beneath the gloomy shadow of the mouldering for-
tress of Thurotz, enters the county of Trenschin,
the careful boatman admonishes his less- accustomed
passengers to sit motionless each in his place, and
to offer up fervent prayers to Our Lady and the
Saints, that the danger which they are about to



THE MARGITTA ROCK. 291

encounter may be averted. This danger, which ap-
pears in the shape of a precipitous rock rising
abruptly and perpendicularly in the channel of the
stream, is indeed of no trivial description ; as by
impeding the impetuous current of the river, it
throws back the waves in wild and foaming break-
ers, and renders it diflScult for the helmsman to
detect the narrow channel through which alone his
frail craft can pass in safety.

Numerous are the accidents which occur beneath
this rocky wall, whose smooth and slippery surface
defies the clinging fingers of the drowning wretch
who struggles with the resistless breakers ; nor is the
peril past when the point is rounded, for imme-
diately beyond this, a line of sharp and pointed
rocks, called the Margitta, traverses the river across
its entire bed, against which the waves toss and
roar in thunder, howling their warning of destruc'
tion to him who may not be sufficiently skilful to
force his bark between them.

This impediment surmounted, all is tranquil and
secure ; and the boatman lifts his woollen cap, and
crosses his breast in gratitude, without one care for
the future ; and then, with that morbid love^ of the

o2



292 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

terrible so strangely inherent in human nature,
coupled with a feeling of honest vanity in his own
superior skill, he hastens to entertain his re-assured
passengers with sad tales of the tragedies which
have taken place under the Margitta Rock.

I remember that on one occasion I made this
little voyage in company with half a dozen other
nobles, who had been like myself enjoying the
chase on the estates of the Count Eiidbdi. We
occupied a couple of rafts, the foremost being
freighted with ourselves, a gallant stag that we
had shot in the forest, and a pile of feathered
game; while our attendants and a couple of
slaughtered wild boar were the lading of the
second.

We had passed a glorious week ; living as hunters
should do, upon the produce of our rifles, to which
an added zest was given by cool draughts of Hei-
delshermer and Imperial Tokayer ; and after the
fatigue of an expedition in which each had striven
to be foremost, the soothing inaction consequent on
this species of travelling was by no means unwel-
come ; while to a group of stout, active, and hardy
young men, who had sufficient faith in their nerve



THE MAltGlttA ROCi^'^ '293

and muscle to enable them to reject the fear
of drowning, although the possibihty of a capsize
was great enough to render it expedient to prepare
for a vigorous battle with the hissing and bellowing
waves, even the excitement attendant on the approach
to the Margitta Rock was not without its charm.

Our principal steersman was a noble fellow,
standing more than six feet high, with long curls of
black and glossy hair streaming upon his shoul-
ders; whiskers and mustachios equally elaborate
in their degree ; and eyes which seemed as though
they could pierce the very rock towards which we
were floating down. In short he was the village
Adonis; and might well have preserved his su-
premacy on a wider stage.

His muscle was tremendous ; and when occa-
sionally he drove us from the bank with his iron-
shod pole, the Hght raft quivered as it obeyed the
impulse. Altogether there was something about
the man which interested me; and I entered into
conversation with him, as my more legitimate com-
panions, when once we had passed the Margitta
(which we did in gallant style, without any other
inconvenience than that which the flying spray in-

o 3



294 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

flicted upon us in impotent disappointment), gra-
dually yielding to the heat of the noontide sun,
fell one after the other into a deep and quiet
sleep.

I found him as intelligent as he was handsome ;
and after a time, when he became more at his ease,
and had answered all my professional queries, he
made an allusion to the gaunt rock which we
had lately passed, and remarked that it was well
worthy of the deed to which it owed its name.

This mention of a tradition delighted my idle-
ness ; so, stretching my limbs into a most luxurious
elongation, pillowing my head on my sheepskin
bunda,"^ and replenishing my meerschaum, I desired
Istvan, for so was my magnificent Charon called, to
give me a sketch of this local legend.

In the olden time — he had no knowledge of
dates, and I liked him the better for it, as names
and dates often weaken a story — he told me that
there lived in that part of the country an aged pea-
sant ; who, weary of widowhood, and not satisfied
with the companionship of his young and beautiful
daughter Margitta, the only child of his dead wife,

* Cloak.



THE MARGITTA ROCK. 295

resolved once more to risk the perils of matrimony ;
and in order to make a hopeful venture, became the
husband of a girl of whom he might with more
propriety have been the father.

The bridegroom's hair was gray, his brow
furrowed, and his step feeble ; but he had flocks,
and herds, and cornfields, and vineyards ; and the
young bride wilfully shut her eyes to the defects of
the man himself, in order to profit by his pos-
sessions.

A weary bridal was that for the poor and pretty
Margitta ! From the hour in which her step- mother
entered the house as its mistress, she felt that for
her all home-comfort was gone ; for even could the
mercenary bride have forgotten that the child of her
old husband must necessarily inherit a portion of his
wealth, she could not forgive the loveliness which
threw her own coarser beauty into the shade ; nor
the fact that she owed all the courtesies of the
village youth to the attractions of the fair girl who
dwelt beneath the same roof.

For a time the misguided old man who had
brought this scourge to his own hearth, hoped, and
tried to believe, that when they had become more



296 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

habituated to each other's presence, his jealous and
vindictive wife would cease to persecute the shrink-
ing and helpless girl, whose only reply to every
taunt was tears. But he was soon painfully dis-
abused ; for the gentleness of Margitta so irritated
the violent temper of the new-made wife, that from
words her tyranny grew into blows; and while his
child bore even these without a murmur, they broke
the old man's heart ; and lie was followed to his
grave by some who pitied his fate, but by more who
blamed his weakness.

-Thenceforward, the existence of Margitta became
one perpetual penance ; and her cheek was growing
pale, and her step heavy, when one of the hand-
somest youths in the village offered himself as
herdsman to the widow, and was instantly engaged.
Many marvelled that he who might have pushed
his fortune in the castle of some noble, to whom his
fine person might have rendered him an acceptable
attendant, should thus limit his ambition ; but
Margitta was not long ere she read his secret, and
paid him back the love he bore her, with an inten-
sity which those only can understand who are alone
in the world, and whose feelings, like the un-



THE MARGITTA ROCK. 297

trained tendrils of the vine, have been suffered to
trail abroad, and to be trodden under foot and
crushed, for lack of something to which they may
clincr.

Her step- mother's violence had no longer any
terrors for M argitta. One look into the eyes of her
lover overpaid all the rebukes and blows which were
liberally bestowed upon her from sunrise to sunset ;
she desponded no longer — hope had sprung up within
her heart^hat sweet hope which is born of affec-
tion, and lives on gentleness. She wondered why
the river had never before been so bright, nor the
earth so beautiful; and as she plied her tasks, she
carolled in the licrhtness of her younor and orladsome
spirit, and forgot that she had ever wished to die.

For awhile all was calm beneath the widow's
roof; but unfortunately that calm was of short du-
ration, for it o^rew out of a grievous error. The
widow still voung and vain, and conscious that her
newly- acquired wealth could not fail to enhance
her personal attractions, had never doubted for a
moment that the handsome herdsman had become
her inmate solely in the hope that he might ulti-
mately become her husband ; nor was she unwilling



298 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

that his fortunes should equal his ambition : and
thus she lived on from day to day in a fool's
paradise, giving smile for smile ; and each night, aS
she laid her head upon her pillow, believing that
the morrow must decide her destiny; until at an
unfortunate moment she discovered that the magnet
which attracted the dark-eyed Adonis to the cottage
was her despised and persecuted step-child.

" Hell has no fury like a woman scorned ;"

and the widow could not conceal from herself that
the young herdsman must be fully aware of the pas-
sion with which he had inspired her ; a conviction
which set the seal on her vindictiveness and hatred
towards the beautiful Margitta.

For some days she brooded over her revenge;
and the dark schemes from which she had shrunk
in horror when they first rose upon her imagination,
became less revolting as she grew accustomed to
their idea ; while she writhed as she remembered
that each hour which she was wasting in inaction
was fraught with happiness to her step-child and the
ungrateful herdsman.

At length the hour of vengeance came : the
fiend had grappled at her heart until it was



THE MARGITTA ROCK. 299

turned into gall; and indurated her woman-nature
into ferocity ; but she veiled her malignant feelings
beneath a manner unusually bland and gentle, and
so eflfectually lulled suspicion, that both Margitta
and her lover began to hope that a change had
come over her nature.

While things were in this state she one day
directed the obedient girl to carry a letter to a
kinsman of her own who lived near Thurotz ; and
Margitta at once prepared for her journey, by
folding her heavy cloak about her, and stealing
away to say farewell to her lover. This was pre-
cisely what her ferocious step-mother had antici-
pated ; and without the delay of a moment she left
the house, and walked rapidly onward in the
direction which the unhappy girl must follow along
the river-bank.

The path which she was compelled to pursue
led her across the ledge of rock to which allusion
has been already made as traversing the bed of
the stream ; and it was on the summit of the pre-
cipice beyond, that the widow lay in wait to sur-
prise her victim; who came fearlessly to the
difficult pass, singing a wild national melody, and



300 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

thinking of her betrothed ; without one misgiving
of the frightful fate which there awaited her ;
but she had scarcely placed her foot upon the first
point of rock, and shaken back her long ringlets in
order to discern her path more clearly^ when with
a loud and bitter cry the revengeful woman flung
herself upon the astonished and terrified girl ; struck
her to the earth ; and despite her wild and phrenzied
shrieks dragged her to the edge of the abyss where
the waves were maddest, and thonce hurledher over !

As the struggling Margitta disappeared beneath
the foam which covered her like a shroud, the
wretched murderess at once awoke to a sense of her
unholy crime. But the deed was done : and as she
hung madly over the precipice, and called in bitter
agony upon the name of her victim, she was
answered only by the roaring of the breakers, and the
mysterious echoes which reverberated from the rock.

On the morrow a couple of peasants discovered
the body of the ill-fated girl entangled among some
masses of stone, towards which it had been swept
by the violence of the current. Her long sunny
hair was floating upon the tide, and her white arms
were putting to shame the gleaming spray that



THE MARGITTA ROCK. 301

was dashing furiously about her, chafed at this
new impediment.

Each recognised her as they drew her to the
bank : and for awhile they believed that her foot
had failed upon the slippery rock, and that she had
fallen from the dizzy height. But as they hung
over her, one of them raised her small cold hand ;
and there, closely clutched within her slender
fingers, they found a fragment of bright-coloured
cotton which was instantly identified as a portion
of a dress well known to belong to the widow ; and
with this damning witness of the crime carefully
replaced in the hand of the corse, they bore their
pale burthen to the village, amid the tears and
murmurs of the simple inhabitants; and carried it
across the threshold of what had been its home,
where it was met only by the agonized lover,
whose despair was fearful to witness ; and whose
emotion as they gave into his charge the morsel of
print, became uncontrollable and furious.

All violence was, however, vain. A night of wander-
ing in the woods, where she had been in imagination
hunted down by the spectre of her victim, had made
a maniac of the murderess : and when, on her next

VOL. u. p



302 THE HUNGARIAN CASTLE.

involuntary approach to the village, she was seen
and immediately pursued by some of the young
peasants, she fled howling and gesticulating before
them, until she reached the precipitous rock from
which she had hurled her miserable step-child;
where, tossing her arms wildly in the air, she
shrieked out the name of the murdered Margitta,
and flung herself headlong into the gulf.

For a few hours the pure waters of the Waag
were polluted by her corse ; but it was ultimately
drafifged to land, and laid to rest in consecrated
<r round.



END OF VOL. II.



London: W. Clowes and Sons, 14, Cliariug Cross.
seahorse, |CobraStaB!| Teşekkür etti.
01-02-2010 21:37
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Yok bn bunların hepsini bilmiyorum.Ama öğrenmeye calısıyorum.


Alıntı dır!!!
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Binbaşı Teşekkür etti.
01-02-2010 21:51
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Yıkıldın, yakıldın devrim dediler,
Soysuzlaştırıldın evrim dediler,
Bozkurt'a it, ite yavrum dediler,
Kalk, doğrul, yerinden yürü. Geç öne!
UYAN EY TÜRK KENDİNE DÖNMEYİ DENE!..
01-02-2010 22:36
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Yararlı bilgiler ama yeni başlıyanların işlerine yarayacağından eminim..
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malea - ait Kullanıcı Resmi (Avatar)
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Kardeş bn yeni basladığımda cok işime yarıyor halende yarıyor zaten
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saol elıne sağlık
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