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broken and dismantled. A draw-bridge, with a ruinous gate-way at each end, led to the court before the building. He entered; and instantly the light, which proceeded from a window in one of the turrets, glided along and vanished; at the same moment the moon sunk beneath a black cloud, and the night was darker than ever. All was silent.-Sir Bertrand fastened his steed under a shed, and approaching the house, traversed its whole front with light and slow footsteps. --All was still as death.—He looked in at the lower windows, but could not distinguish a single object through the impenetrable gloom. After a short parley with himself, he entered the porch, and seizing a massy iron knocker at the gate, lifted it up, and, hesitating, at length struck a loud stroke.—The noise resounded through the whole mansion with hollow echoes.—All was still again, he repeated the strokes more boldly and loudly—another interval ensued—a third time he knocked, and a third time all was still. He then fell back to some distance, that he might discern whether any light could be seen in the whole front. It again appeared in the same place, and quickly glided away as before—at the same instant a deep sullen toll sounded from the turret. Sir Bertrand's heart made a fearful stop—he was a while motionless; then terror impelled him to make some hasty steps towards his steedbut shame stopt his flight; and urged by honour and a resistless desire of finishing the adventure, he returned to the porch; and working up his soul to a full steadiness of resolution, he drew forth his sword with one hand, and with the other lifted up the latch of the gate. The heavy door, creaking upon its hinges, reluctantly yielded to his handhe applied his shoulder to it, and forced it open-he quitted it, and stepped forward--the door instantly shut with a thundering clap. Sir Bertrand's blood was chilled-he
turned back to find the door, and it was long ere his trembling hands could seize it: but his utmost strength could not open it again. After several ineffectual attempts, he looked behind him, and beheld, across a hall, upon a large staircase, a pale bluish flame, which cast a dismal gleam of light around. He again summoned forth his courage, and advanced towards it. It retired. He came to the foot of the stairs, and after a moment's deliberation ascended. He went slowly up, the flame retiring before him, till he came to a wide gallery. The flame proceeded along it, and he followed in silent horror, treading lightly, for the echoes of his footsteps startled him. It led him to the foot of another staircase, and then vanished. At the same instant another toll sounded from the turret -Sir Bertrand felt it strike upon his heart. He was now in total darkness, and with his arms extended, began to ascend the second staircase. A dead cold hand met his left hand, and firmly grasped it, drawing him forcibly forwards—he endeavored to disengage himself, but could not—he made a furious blow with his sword, and instantly a loud shriek pierced his ears, and the dead band was left powerless with his-He dropt it, and rushed forward with a desperate valour. The stairs were narrow and winding, and interrupted by frequent breaches, and loose fragments of stone. The staircase grew narrower and narrower, and at length terminated in a low iron grate. Sir Bertrand pushed it open-it led to an intricate winding passage, just large enough to admit a person upon his hands and knees. A faint glimmering of light served to show the nature of the place. Sir Bertrand entered. A deep hollow groan resounded from a distance through the vault. He went forwards, and proceeding beyond the first turning, he discerned the same blue flame which had before conducted him. He followed it. The vault at length suddenly opened
into a lofty gallery, in the midst of which a figure appeared completely armed, thrusting forwards the bloody stump of an arm with a terrible frown and menacing gesture, and brandishing a sword in his hand. Sir Bertrand undauntedly sprung forwards, and aiming a fierce blow at the figure, it instantly vanished, letting fall a massy iron key. The flame now rested upon a pair of ample folding-doors at the end of the gallery. Sir Bertrand went up to it, and applied the key to a brazen lock—with difficulty he turned the bolt -instantly the doors flew open, and discovered a large apartment, at the end of which was a coffin rested upon a bier, with a taper burning upon each side of it. Along the room on both sides were gigantic statues of black marble, attired in the Moorish habit, and holding enormous sabres in their right hands. Each of them reared his arm, and advanced one leg forwards, as the knight entered; at the same moment the lid of the coffin flew open, and the bell tolled. The flame still glided forwards, and Sir Bertrand resolutely followed, till he arrived within six paces of the coffin. Suddenly, a lady in a shroud and black veil rose up in it, and stretched out her arms towards him; at the same time the statues clashed their sabres and advanced. Sir Bertrand flew to the lady and clasped her in his arms—she threw up her veil and kissed his lips; and instantly the whole building shook as with an earthquake, and fell asunder with a horrible crash. Sir Bertrand was thrown into a sudden trance, and on recovering, found himself seated on a velvet sofa, in the most magnificent room he had ever seen, lighted with innumerable tapers, in lustres of pure crystal. A sumptuous banquet was set in the middle. The doors opening to soft music, a lady of incomparable beauty, attired with amazing splendour, entered, surrounded by a troop of gay nymphs more fair than the Graces. She advanced to the knight, and falling on her knees thanked him as her deliverer. The nymphs placed a garland of laurel upon his head, and the lady led him by the hand to the banquet, and sat beside him. The nymphs placed themselves at the table, and a numerous train of servants entering, served up the feast, delicious music playing all the time. Sir Bertrand could not speak for astonishment-he could only return their honours by courteous looks and gestures. After the banquet was finished, all retired but the lady, who leading back the knight to the sofa, addressed him in these words:
THE FIVE POINTS IN HIS HISTORY.
THESE are Crusoe's loneliness, his contrivances how to live, his discovery of the footmark on the sea-shore, his first sight of the savages, and his obtainment of a companion and servant in Friday. The second, though the least surprising, is the one most habitually felt by the reader; the one he oftenest thinks of. It is indeed the main subject of the book. But, as its interest spreads over the greater part of it, and could only be duly represented by copious extracts (minuteness of detail being necessary to do justice to its ingenuity and perseverance) it would have occupied too large a share of these pages. The lesser quantity and more startling quality of the other points render them obviously fittest for selection. The loneliness, which is in itself a one-ness, can be well enough represented by one impressive extract; the footmark is essentially one (never was there a finer unique); the first sight of the savages is of the same brief and independent order of interest; and two “man Fridays” are not in the regions of possibility. Peter Wilkins's “man Friday” was obliged to be turned into a woman, and Philip Quarll's into a monkey.
Robinson Crusoe is understood to be founded on the real history of Alexander Selkirk, a summary of which, charmingly written, was given to the public by Steele. The greatest genius might have been proud to paint a picture after that sketch. Yet we are not sure that Selkirk's adventure was not an injury, instead of a benefit to De Foe. A benefit it undoubtedly was, to him and to all of us, if it was required in order to put the thought into De Foe's head; but what we mean is, that the world would probably have had the fiction, whether the fact had