Skip to main content

Full text of "Guy Fawkes, or, The gunpowder treason : an historical romance"

See other formats







1811 s 

'• w 

<\ t 

The person charging this material is re- 
sponsible for its return to the library from 
which it was withdrawn on or before the 
Latest Date stamped below. 

Theft, mutilation, and underlining of books 
are reasons for disciplinary action and may 
result in dismissal from the University. 



1 5 19/7 

< \ 

L161 — O-1096 

The person charging this material is re- 
sponsible for its return to the library from 
which it was withdrawn on or before the 
Latest Date stamped below. 

Theft, mutilation, and underlining of books 
are reasons for disciplinary action and may 
result in dismissal from the University. 



! 3 - 1977 


NOV 4 -1577 
NOV - >\ 1S7 


NOV 7m 
NOV 7m 



LI61 — O-1096 

Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2010 with funding from 

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign 







' You shall swear by the blessed Trinity, and bj tht sacrament you now propo* 
to receive, n^cr to disclose directly o> indirectly, by word or circumstame, 
the matter mat shall be proposed to 'you to keep secret; nor desist from the 
execution thereof till the rest shall give you leave." 

oath of the Conspirators. 


VOL. I. 










My dear Mrs. Hughes, 

You are aware that this Romance was brought 
to a close during my last brief visit at King- 
ston Lisle, when the time necessary to be de- 
voted to it deprived me of the full enjoyment 
of your society, and, limiting my range — no 
very irksome restriction, — to your own charm- 
ing garden and grounds, prevented me from 
accompanying you in your walks to your fa- 
vourite and beautiful downs. This circum- 
. stance, which will suffice to give it some in- 
terest in your eyes by associating it with your 
residence, furnishes me with a plea, of which I 
gladly avail myself, of inscribing it with your 
name, and of recording, at the same time, the 


high sense I entertain of your goodness and 
worth, the value I set upon your friendship, — a 
friendship shared in common with some of the 
most illustrious writers of our time, — and the 
gratitude I shall never cease to feel for atten- 
tions and kindnesses little less than maternal, 
which I have experienced at your hands. 

In the hope that you may long continue to 
diffuse happiness round your own circle, and 
contribute to the instruction and delight of the 
many attached friends with whom you main- 
tain so active and so interesting a correspon- 
dence ; and that you may live to see your 
grandsons fulfil their present promise, and tread 
in the footsteps of their high-minded and excel- 
lent-hearted father, — and of his father! I 

Your affectionate and obliged friend, 

W. Harrison Ainsworth. 

Kensal Manor House, Harrow Road, 
July 26, 1841. 


The tyrannical measures adopted against the 
Roman Catholics in the early part of the reign 
of James the First, when the severe penal en- 
actments against recusants were revived, and 
with additional rigour, and which led to the 
remarkable conspiracy about to be related, 
have been so forcibly and faithfully described 
by Doctor Lingard,* that the following extract 
from his history will form a fitting introduction 
to the present work. 

" The oppressive and sanguinary code framed 
in the reign of Elizabeth, was re-enacted to its 
full extent, and even improved with additional 
severities. Every individual who had studied or 
resided, or should afterwards study or reside in 
any college or seminary beyond the sea, was 
rendered incapable of inheriting, or purchasing, 
or enjoying lands, annuities, chattels, debts, or 

* Vide History of England, vol ix. New Edition. 


sums of money, within the realm ; and as mis- 
sionaries sometimes eluded detection under the 
disguise of tutors, it was provided that no man 
should teach even the rudiments of grammar 
in public or in private, without the previous 
approbation of the diocesan. 

" The execution of the penal laws enabled the 
king, by an ingenious comment, to derive con- 
siderable profit from his past forbearance. It 
was pretended that he had never forgiven the 
penalties of recusancy ; he had merely for- 
bidden them to be exacted for a time, in the 
hope that this indulgence would lead to con- 
formity ; but his expectations had been de- 
ceived ; the obstinacy of the Catholics had 
grown with the lenity of the sovereign ; and, 
as they were unworthy of further favour, they 
should now be left to the severity of the law. 
To their dismay, the legal fine of twenty 
pounds per lunar month was again demanded, 
and not only for the time to come, but for 
the whole period of the suspension ; a demand 
which, by crowding thirteen payments into 
one, reduced many families of moderate, in- 


comes to a state of absolute beggary. Nor 
was this all. James was surrounded by num- 
bers of his indigent countrymen. Their habits 
were expensive, their wants many, and their 
importunities incessant. To satisfy the more 
clamorous, a new expedient was devised. The 
king transferred to them his claims on some 
of the more opulent recusants, against whom 
they were at liberty to proceed by law, in 
his name, unless the sufferers should submit 
to compound by the grant of an annuity for 
life, or the immediate payment of a considerable 
sum. This was at a time when the jealousies 
between the two nations had reached a height, 
of which, at the present day, we have but 
little conception. Had the money been carried 
to the royal coffers, the recusants would have 
had sufficient reason to complain ; but that 
Englishmen should be placed by their king 
at the mercy of foreigners, that they should 
be stripped of their property to support the 
extravagance of his Scottish minions, this added 
indignity to injustice, exacerbated their already 
wounded feelings, and goaded the most mo- 


derate almost to desperation." From this de- 
plorable state of things, which is by no means 
over-coloured in the above description, sprang 
the Gunpowder Plot. 

The county of Lancaster has always abound- 
ed in Catholic families, and at no period were 
the proceedings of the ecclesiastical commis- 
sioners more rigorous against them than at that 
under consideration. Manchester, "the Goshen 
of this Egypt," as it is termed by the fiery zealot, 
Warden Hey rick, being the place where all 
the recusants were imprisoned, the scene of 
the early part of this history has been laid in 
that town and its immediate neighbourhood. 
For the introduction of the munificent founder 
of the Blue Coat Hospital into a tale of this 
description I ought, perhaps, to apologize, but 
if I should succeed by it in arousing my fellow- 
townsmen to a more lively appreciation of the 
great benefits they have derived from him, I 
shall not regret what I have written. 

In Viviana Radcliffe I have sought to portray 
the loyal and devout Catholic, such as I con- 
ceive the character to have existed at the 


period. In Catesby, the unscrupulous and 
ambitious plotter, masking his designs under 
the cloak of religion. In Garnet, the subtle, 
and yet sincere Jesuit. And in Fawkes the 
gloomy and superstitious enthusiast. One doc- 
trine I have endeavoured to enforce through- 
out, — Toleration. 

From those who have wilfully misinterpreted 
one of my former productions, and have at- 
tributed to it a purpose and an aim utterly 
foreign to my own intentions, I can scarcely 
expect fairer treatment for the present work. 
But to that wider and more discriminating 
class of readers from whom I have experienced 
so much favour and support, I confidently com- 
mit these volumes, certain of meeting with 
leniency and impartiality. 





Book tljc dfust. 






14 V 












CHAT -MOSS .... 


















Chapter Pa £ e 


. 220 

. 2.31 







VOL. I. 

Guy Fawkes and Clietham rescuing Father Oldeorne 

and Viviana . . to face the Title. 

Guy Fawkes in Ordsall Cave . . Page 30 

Guy Fawkes discovers Dr. Dee disinterring the body 

of Elizabeth Orton .... 131 

Dr. Dee exhibiting his magical skill to Guy Fawkes 11)2 
Vision of Guy Fawkes at St. Winifred's Well . 21 9 

Guy Fawkes preventing Sir William Radcliffe from 

joining the conspiracy . . . 252 

Dr. Dee resuscitating Guy Fawkes . . . 301 


Guy Fawkes keeping watch upon Tresham and Lord 

Mounteagle . . .to face the Title. 

Guy Fawkes protecting Chetham from Catesby Page 44 
Viviana imploring Guy Fawkes to abandon the con- 
spiracy . . . . . 76 
Guy Fawkes and Catesby landing the powder . 11$ 
Guy Fawkes and the other Conspirators alarmed 175 
ia examined by the Earl of Salisbury, &c. in the 
Star Chamber .... 
Guy Fawkes laying the train . . . 305 



Execution of Guy Fawkes . to face the Title. 

Guy Fawkes arrested by Sir Thomas Knevett and 

Topcliffe .... Page 46 

Guy Fawkes interrogated by King James the First 87 

Guy Fawkes subscribing his examination after the 

torture .... 125 

The explosion at Holbeach . . 178 

Death of Catesby .... 203 

Discovery of Garnet and Oldcorne at Hendlip . 268 
Death of Viviana ...... 324 


33oofc tf)t d?trst, 


Their searches are many and severe. They come either in the ni^ht 
or early in the morning, and ever seek their opportunity, when the Ca- 
tholics are or would be best occupied, or are likely to be worse provided 
or look for nothing. They willingliest come when few are at home to 
resist them, that they may rifle coders, and do what they list. They lock 
up the servants, and the mistress of the house, and the whole family, 
in a room by themselves, while they, like young princes, go rifling the 
house at their will. 

Letter to Verstegan, ap. Stonyhurst MSS. 

What a thing is it for a Catholic gentleman to have his house suddenly 
beset on all sides with a number of men in arms, both horse and foot! 
and not only his house and gardens, and such enclosed places all beset, 
but all highways laid, for some miles near unto him, that none shall pass, 
but they shall be examined ! Then are these searchers oft-times so rude 
and barbarous, that, if the doors be not opened in the instant they would 
enter, they break open the doors with all violence, as if they were to 
sack a town of enemies won by the sword. 

Father Gerard's MS. 




More than two hundred and thirty-five years 
ago, or, to speak with greater precision, in 1605, 
at the latter end of June, it was rumoured one 
morning in Manchester that two seminary priests, 
condemned at the late assizes under the severe 
penal enactments then in force against the Pa- 
pists, were about to suffer death on that day. 
Attracted by the report, large crowds flocked to- 
wards the place of execution, which, in order to 
give greater solemnity to the spectacle, had been 
fixed at the southern gate of the old Collegiate 
Church, where a scaffold was erected. Near it 
was a large blood-stained block, the use of which 
will be readily divined, and adjoining the block, 


upon a heap of blazing coals, smoked a caldron 
filled with boiling pitch, intended to receive the 
quarters of the miserable sufferers. 

The place was guarded by a small band of 
soldiers, fully accoutred in corslets and morions, 
and armed with swords, half-pikes, and calivers. 
Upon the steps of the scaffold stood the execu- 
tioner, — a square-built, ill-favoured personage, 
busied in arranging a bundle of straw upon the 
boards. He was dressed in a buff jerkin, and 
had a long-bladed, two-edged knife thrust into 
his girdle. Besides these persons, there was a 
pursuivant, — an officer appointed by the Privy 
Council to make search throughout the provinces 
for recusants, Popish priests, and other religious 
offenders. He was occupied at this moment in 
reading over a list of suspected persons. 

Neither the executioner nor his companions 
appeared in the slightest degree impressed by the 
butcherly business about to be enacted ; for the 
former whistled carelessly as he pursued his task, 
while the latter laughed and chatted with the 
crowd, or jestingly pointed their matchlocks at 
the jackdaws wheeling above them in the sunny 


air, or perching upon the pinnacles and tower of 
the neighbouring fane. Not so the majority of 
the assemblage. Most of the older and wealthier 
families in Lancashire still -continuing to adhere 
to the ancient faith of their fathers, it will not be 
wondered that many of their dependants should 
follow their example. And, even of those who 
were adverse to the creed of Rome, there were 
few who did not murmur at the rigorous system 
of persecution adopted towards its professors. 

At nine o'clock, the hollow rolling of a muf- 
fled drum was heard at a distance. The deep 
bell of the church began to toll, and presently 
afterwards the mournful procession was seen ad- 
vancing from the market-place. It consisted of 
a troop of mounted soldiers, equipped in all re- 
spects like those stationed at the scaffold, with 
their captain at their head, and followed by two 
of their number with hurdles attached to their 
steeds, on which were tied the unfortunate vic- 
tims. Both were young men — both apparently 
prepared to meet their fate with firmness and re- 
signation. They had been brought from Rad- 
cliffe Hall — an old moated and fortified mansion 


belonging to a wealthy family of that name, situ- 
ated where the close, called Pool Fold now 
stands, and then recently converted into a place 
of security for recusants ; the two other prisons in 
Manchester — namely, the New Fleet on Hunt's 
Bank, and the gaol on Salford Bridge, — not 
being found adequate to the accommodation of 
the numerous religious offenders. 

By this time, the cavalcade had reached the 
place of execution. The soldiers drove back the 
throng with their pikes, and cleared a space in 
front of the scaffold ; when, just as the cords that 
bound the limbs of the priests were unfastened, 
a woman in a tattered woollen robe, with a hood 
partially drawn over her face, — the features of 
which, so far as they could be discerned, were 
sharp and attenuated, — a rope girded round her 
waist, bare feet, and having altogether the ap- 
pearance of a sister of Charity, sprang forward, 
and flung herself on her knees beside them. 

Clasping the hem of the garment of the nearest 
priest, she pressed it to her lips, and gazed earn- 
estly at him, as if imploring a blessing. 

" You have your wish, daughter,' 1 said the 


priest, extending his arms over her. " Heaven 
and Our Lady bless you ! " 

The woman then turned towards the other 
victim, who was audibly reciting the Miserere. 

"Back, spawn of Antichrist !" interposed a 
soldier, rudely thrusting her aside. " Don't you 
see you disturb the father's devotions ? He has 
enough to do to take care of his own soul without 
minding yours." 

" Take this, daughter," cried the priest who 
had been first addressed, offering her a small 
volume, which he took from his vest, " and fail 
not to remember in your prayers the sinful soul 
of Robert Woodroofe, a brother of the order of 
Jesus. " 

The woman put out her hand to take the book ; 
but before it could be delivered to her, it was 
seized by the soldier. 

IC Your priests have seldom anything to leave 
behind them," he shouted, with a brutal laugh, 
" except some worthless and superstitious relic 
of a saint or martyr. What 's this ? Ah ! a 
breviary — a mass-book. I 've too much regard 
for your spiritual welfare to allow you to re- 


ceive it," he added, about to place it in his 

" Give it her," exclaimed a young man, snatch- 
ing it from him, and handing it to the woman, 
who disappeared as soon as she had obtained pos- 
session of it. 

The soldier eyed the new-comer as if disposed 
to resent the interference, but a glance at his 
apparel, which, though plain, and of a sober hue, 
was rather above the middle class, as well as a 
murmur from the crowd, who were evidently dis- 
posed to take part with the young man, induced 
him to stay his hand. He, therefore, contented 
himself with crying, " A recusant ! a Papist !" 

"I am neither recusant nor Papist, knave ! " 
replied the other, sternly ; u and I counsel you 
to amend your manners, and show more hu- 
manity, or you shall find I have interest enough 
to procure your dismissal from a service which 
you disgrace. 1 ' 

This reply elicited a shout of applause from the 

" Who is that bold speaker? 11 demanded the 
pursuivant from one of his attendants. 


" Humphrey Chetliam of CrumpsaU,' 1 answer- 
ed the man ; " son to one of the wealthiest mer- 
chants of the town, and a zealous upholder of the 
true faith. 11 

" He has a strange way of showing his zeal,' 1 
rejoined the pursuivant, entering the answer in 
his note-book. " And who is the woman he 
befriended? 11 

" A half-crazed being called Elizabeth Orton," 
replied the attendant. " She was scourged and 
tortured during Queen Elizabeth's reign for pre- 
tending to the gift of prophecy, and wa§ com- 
pelled to utter her recantation within yonder 
church. Since then she has never opened her 
lips. 11 

" Indeed ! " exclaimed the pursuivant : " I 
will engage to make her speak, and to some pur- 
pose. Where does she live P 11 

" In a cave on the banks of the Irw ell, near 
Ordsall' Hall, 11 replied the attendant. " She 
subsists on the chance contributions of the cha- 
ritable ; but she solicits nothing, — and, indeed, is 
seldom seen. 11 

" Her cave must be searched, 11 observed the 

B 5 


pursuivant ; " it may be the hiding-place of a 
priest. Father Campion was concealed in such 
another spot at Stonor Park, near Henley-on- 
Thames, where he composed his 'Decern Ra- 
tiones ,*' and, for a long time, eluded the vigilance 
of the commissioners. — We shall pass it in our 
way to Ordsall Hall to-night, shall we not?" 

The attendant nodded an affirmative. 

" If we surprise Father Oldcorne," continued 
the pursuivant, " and can prove that Sir William 
Radcliffe and his daughter, both of whom are 
denounced in my list, are harbourers and shel- 
terers of recusants, we shall have done a good 
night's work." 

At this moment, an officer advanced, and com- 
manded the priests to ascend the scaffold. 

As Father Woodroofe, who was the last to 
mount, reached the uppermost step, he turned 
round and cried in a loud voice, " Good people, 
I take you all to witness that I die in the true 
Catholic religion, and that I rejoice and thank 
God with all my soul, that he hath made me wor- 
thy to testify my faith therein by shedding my 
blood in this manner." He then advanced to- 


wards the executioner, who was busied in adjust- 
ing the cord round his companion's throat, and 
said, " God forgive thee — do thine office quick- 
ly ;" adding in a lower tone, M Asperge me, 
Domine ; Domine, miserere met ! " 

And, amid the deep silence that ensued, the 
executioner performed his horrible task. 

The execution over, the crowd began to sepa- 
rate slowly, and various opinions were expressed 
respecting the revolting and sanguinary spectacle 
just witnessed. Many, who condemned — and 
the majority did so — the extreme severity of 
the laws by which the unfortunate priests had 
just suffered, uttered their sentiments with ex- 
treme caution ; but there were some whose feel- 
ings had been too much excited for prudence, and 
who inveighed loudly and bitterly against the 
spirit of religious persecution then prevailing ; 
while a few others of an entirely opposite persua- 
sion looked upon the rigorous proceedings adopt- 
ed against the Papists, and the punishment now 
inflicted upon their priesthood, as a just retribu- 
tion for their own severities during the reign of 
Mary. In general, the common people enter- 


tained a strong prejudice against the Catholic 
party, — for, as it has been shrewdly observed, 
" they must ever have some object to hate ; here- 
tofore it was the Welsh, the Scots, or the Spa- 
niards, but now in these latter times only the 
Papists ;" but in Manchester, near which, as has 
been already stated, so many old and important 
families, professing that religion, resided, the case 
was widely different ; and the mass of the inha- 
bitants were favourably inclined towards them. 
It was the knowledge of this feeling that induced 
the commissioners, appointed to superintend the 
execution of the enactments against recusants, to 
proceed with unusual rigour in this neighbour- 

The state of the Roman Catholic party at the 
period of this history, was indeed most grievous. 
The hopes they had indulged of greater toleration 
on the accession of James the First, had been 
entirely destroyed. The persecutions, suspended 
during the first year of the reign of the new mon- 
arch, were now renewed with greater severity 
than ever ; and though their present condition 
was deplorable enough, it was feared that worse 


remained in store for tliem. " They bethought 
themselves,"" writes Bishop Goodman, " that now 
their case was far worse than in the time of Queen 
Elizabeth ; for they did live in some hope that 
after the old woman's life, they might have some 
mitigation, and even those who did then perse- 
cute them were a little more moderate, as being 
doubtful what times might succeed, and fearing 
their own case. But, now that they saw the 
times settled, having no hope of better days, but 
expecting that the uttermost rigour of the law 
should be executed, they became desperate : find- 
ing that by the laws of the kingdom their own 
lives were not secured, and for the carrying over 
of a priest into England it was no less than high 
treason. A gentlewoman was hanged only for re- 
lieving and harbouring a priest ; a citizen was 
hanged only for being reconciled to the Church of 
Rome ; besides, the penal laws were such, and so 
executed, that they could not subsist. What 
was usually sold in shops and usually bought, this 
the pursuivant would take away from them as 
being Popish and superstitious. One knight did 
affirm that in one term he gave twenty nobles in 


rewards to the door-keeper of the Attorney-gene- 
ral ; another did affirm, that his third part which 
remained unto him of his estate did hardly serve 
for his expense in law to defend him from other 
oppressions; besides their children to be taken 
from home, to be brought up in another religion. 
So they did every way conclude that their estate 
was desperate ; they could die but once, and 
their religion was more precious unto them than 
their lives. They did further consider their mi- 
sery ; how they were debarred in any course of 
life to help themselves. They could not practise 
law, — they could not be citizens, — they could 
have no office ; they could not breed up their 
sons — none did desire to match with them ; they 
had neither fit marriages for their daughters, nor 
nunneries to put them into ; for those few which 
are beyond seas are not considerable in respect 
of the number of recusants, and none can be ad- 
mitted into them without great sums of money, 
which they, being exhausted, could not supply. 
The Spiritual Court did not cease to molest them, 
to excommunicate them, then to imprison them ; 
and thereby they were utterly disenabled to sue 


for their own." Such is a faithful picture of the 
state of the Catholic party at the commencement 
of the reign of James the First. 

Pressed down by these intolerable grievances, 
is it to be wondered at that the Papists should 
repine, — or that some among their number, when 
all other means failed, should seek redress by 
darker measures ? By a statute of Elizabeth, all 
who refused to conform to the established religion 
were subjected to a fine of twenty pounds a lunar 
month ; and this heavy penalty, remitted, or 
rather suspended, on the accession of the new 
sovereign, was again exacted, and all arrears 
claimed. Added to this, James, whose court was 
thronged by a host of needy Scottish retainers, 
assigned to them a certain number of wealthy 
recusants, and empowered them to levy the fines, 
— a privilege of which they were not slow to 
avail themselves. There were other pains and 
penalties provided for by the same statute, which 
were rigorously inflicted. To withdraw, or seek 
to withdraw another from the established religion 
was accounted high treason, and punished accord- 
ingly ; to hear mass involved a penalty of one 


hundred marks and a year's imprisonment ; and to 
harbour a priest, under the denomination of a 
tutor, rendered the latter liable to a year's im- 
prisonment, and his employer to a fine of ten 
pounds a-month. Impressed with the belief that, 
in consequence of the unremitting persecutions 
which the Catholics underwent in Elizabeth's 
time, the religion would be wholly extirpated, 
Doctor Allen, a Lancashire divine, who after- 
Wards received a cardinal's hat, founded a college 
at Douay, for the reception and education of 
those intending to take orders. From this uni- 
versity a number of missionary priests, or semi- 
narists, as they were termed, were annually sent 
over to England ; and it was against these per- 
sons, who submitted to every hardship and priva- 
tion, to danger, and death itself, for the welfare 
of their religion, and in the hope of propagating 
its doctrines, that the utmost rigour of the penal 
enactments was directed. Among the number 
of seminarists despatched from Douay, and capi- 
tally convicted under the statute above-men- 
tioned, were the two priests whose execution has 
just been narrated. 


As a portion of the crowd passed over the old 
bridge across the Irwell connecting Manchester 
with Salford, on which stood an ancient chapel 
erected by Thomas de Booth, in the reign of 
Edward the Third, and recently converted into a 
prison for recusants, they perceived the pro- 
phetess, Elizabeth Orton, seated upon the stone 
steps of the desecrated structure, earnestly peru- 
sing the missal given her by Father Woodroofe. 
A mob speedily collected round her ; but, un- 
conscious seemingly of their presence, the poor 
woman turned over leaf after leaf, and pursued 
her studies. Her hood was thrown back, and 
discovered her bare and withered neck, over 
which her dishevelled hair streamed in long sable 
elf-locks. Irritated by her indifference, several 
of the by-standers, who had questioned her as to 
the nature of her studies, began to mock and jeer 
her, and endeavoured by plucking her robe, and 
casting little pebbles at her, to attract her atten- 
tion. Roused at length by these annoyances, she 
arose ; and fixing her large black eyes menacingly 
upon them, was about to stalk away, when they 
surrounded and detained her. 


" Speak to us, Bess," cried several voices. 
" Prophesy — prophesy/' 

" I will speak to you," replied the poor wo- 
man, shaking her hand at them, " I will prophesy 
to you. And mark me, though ye believe me 
not, my words shall not fall to the ground." 

" A miracle ! a miracle ! " shouted the by- 
standers. " Bess Orton, who has been silent for 
twenty years, has found her tongue at last." 

" I have seen a vision, and dreamed a dream," 
continued the prophetess. " As I lay in my cell 
last night, meditating upon the forlorn state of 
our religion, and of its professors, methought 
nineteen shadowy figures stood before me — ay, 
nineteen — for I counted them thrice — and when 
I questioned them as to their coming, — for my 
tongue, at first, clove to the roof of my mouth, 
and my lips refused their office, — one of them 
answered in a voice which yet rings in my ears, 
' We are the chosen deliverers of our fallen and 
persecuted church. To us is intrusted the re- 
building of her temples, — to our hands is com- 
mitted the destruction of her enemies. The 
work will be done in darkness and in secret, — 


with toil and travail, — but it will at length be 
made manifest ; and when the hour is arrived, our 
vengeance will be terrible and exterminating.' 1 
With these words, they vanished from my sight. 
Ah !" she exclaimed, suddenly starting, and pass- 
ing her hand across her brow, as if to clear her 
sight, " it was no dream — no vision. I see one 
of them now." 

" Where ? where ?" cried several voices. 

The prophetess answered by extending her 
skinny arm towards some object immediately be- 
fore her. 

All eyes were instantly turned in the same 
direction, when they beheld a Spanish soldier — 
for such his garb proclaimed him — standing at a 
few paces 1 distance from them. He was wrapped 
in an ample cloak, with a broad-leafed steeple- 
crowned hat, decorated with a single green feather, 
pulled over his brows, and wore a polished-steel 
brigandine, trunk loose, and buff boots drawn up 
to the knees. His arms consisted of a brace of 
petronels thrust into his belt, whence a long 
rapier depended. His features were dark as 
bronze, and well-formed, though strongly marked, 


and had an expression of settled sternness. His 
eyes were grey and penetrating, and shaded by 
thick beetle-brows ; and his physiognomy was 
completed by a black peaked beard. His person 
was tall and erect, and his deportment soldier-like 
and commanding. Perceiving he had become an 
object of notice, the stranger cast a compassionate 
look at the prophetess, who still remained gazing 
fixedly at him, and throwing her a few pieces of 
money, strode away. 

Watching his retreating figure till it disap- 
peared from view, the crazed woman tossed her 
arms wildly in the air, and cried, in a voice of 
exultation, " Did I not speak the truth ? — did I 
not tell you I had seen him ? He is the de- 
liverer of our church, and is come to avenge the 
righteous blood which hath been this day shed." 

" Peace, woman, and fly while there is yet 
time,'" cried the young man who had been desig- 
nated as Humphrey Chetham. " The pursuivant 
and his myrmidons are in search of you." 

" Then they need not go far to find me,"" 
replied the prophetess. " I will tell them what 
I told these people, that the day of bloody retri- 


bution is at hand, — that the avenger is arrived. 
I have seen him twice, — once in my cave, and 
once again here, — even where you stand." 

" If you do not keep silence and fly, my poor 
creature," rejoined Humphrey Chetham, " you 
will have to endure what you suffered years ago, 
— stripes, and perhaps torture. Be warned by 
me — ah ! it is too late. He is approaching." 

" Let him come," replied Elizabeth Orton, " I 
am ready for him." 

" Can none of you force her away ? " cried 
Humphrey Chetham, appealing to the crowd; 
" I will reward you." 

" I will not stir from this spot," rejoined the 
prophetess, obstinately ; w I will testify to the 

The kind-hearted young merchant, finding any 
further attempt to preserve her fruitless, drew 

By this time, the pursuivant and his attendants 
had come up. "Seize her!" cried the former, 
" and let her be placed within this prison till I 
have reported her to the commissioners. If you 
will confess to me, woman," he added in a whis- 


per to her, " that you have harboured a priest, and 
will guide us to his hiding-place, you shall be 
set free.'" 

" I know of no priests but those you iiave 
murdered," returned the prophetess, in a loud 
voice, " but I will tell you something that you 
wot not of. The avenger of blood is at hand. 
I have seen him. All here have seen him. And 
you shall see him — but not now — not now." 

" What is the meaning of this raving?" de- 
manded the pursuivant. 

" Pay no heed to her talk," interposed Hum- 
phrey Chetham ; " she is a poor crazed being, 
who knows not what she says. I will be surety 
for her inoffensive conduct." 

" You must give me surety for yourself, sir," 
replied the pursuivant. " I have just learnt 
that you were last night at Ordsall Hall, the seat 
of that ' dangerous temporiser,' — for so he is de- 
signated in my warrant, — Sir William Radcliffe. 
And if report speaks truly, you are not altogether 
insensible to the charms of his fair daughter, 

" What is this to thee, thou malapert knave ?" 


cried Humphrey Chetham, reddening partly from 
anger, partly, it might be, from another emotion. 

" Much, as you shall presently find, good 
Master Wolf-in-sheep's-clothing," retorted the 
pursuivant ; "if you prove not a rank Papist at 
heart then do I not know a true man from a false." 

This angry conference was cut short by a pier- 
cing scream from the prophetess. Breaking from 
the grasp of her captors, who were about to force 
her into the prison, she sprang with a single 
bound upon the parapet of the bridge ; and utterly 
regardless of her dangerous position, turned, and 
faced the soldiers, who were struck mute with 

" Tremble ! " she cried in a loud voice, — 
" tremble, ye evil-doers ! Ye who have despoil- 
ed the house of God, — have broken his altars, — 
scattered his incense, — slain his priests. Trem- 
ble, I say. The avenger is arrived. The bolt is 
in his hand. It shall strike king, lords, com- 
mons, — all ! These- are my last words, — take 
them to heart." 

" Drag her off ! " roared the pursuivant, 


" Use care — use gentleness, if ye are men !" 
cried Humphrey Chetham. 

" Think not you can detain me!" cried the 
prophetess. " Avaunt, and tremble !" 

So saying she flung herself from the parapet. 

The height from which she fell was about fifty 
feet. Dashed into the air like jets from a foun- 
tain by the weight and force of the descending 
body, the water instantly closed over her. But 
she rose to the surface of the stream, about twenty 
yards below the bridge. 

" She may yet be saved," cried Humphrey 
Chetham, who with the by-standers had hurried 
to the side of the bridge. 

" You will only preserve her for the gallows," 
observed the pursuivant. 

44 Your malice shall not prevent my making 
the attempt," replied the young merchant. 
" Ha ! assistance is at hand." 

The exclamation was occasioned by the sudden 
appearance of the soldier in the Spanish dress, 
who rushed towards the left bank of the river, 
which was here, as elsewhere, formed of red sand- 
stone rock, and following the course of the cur- 


rent, awaited the next appearance of the drowning 
woman. It did not occur till she had been 
carried a considerable distance down the stream, 
when the soldier, swiftly divesting himself of his 
cloak, plunged into the water, and dragged her 

" Follow me, 11 cried the pursuivant to his 
attendants. " I will not lose my prey." 

But before he gained the bank of the river, 
the soldier and his charge had disappeared, nor 
could he detect any traces of them. 

VOL. I. 




After rescuing the unfortunate prophetess 
from a watery grave in the manner just related, 
the soldier snatched up his cloak, and, taking 
his dripping burthen in his arms, hurried swiftly 
along the bank of the river, until he came to a 
large cleft in the rock, into which he crept, taking 
the prophetess with him, and thus eluded ob- 
servation. In this retreat he continued upwards 
of two hours, during which time the poor crea- 
ture, to whom he paid every attention that cir- 
cumstances would admit, had so far recovered as 
to be able to speak. But it was evident that the 
shock had been too much for her, and that she 
was sinking fast. She was so faint that she conld 
scarcely move ; but she expressed a strong desire 
to reach her cell before she breathed her last. 


Having described its situation as accurately as 
she could to the soldier, — who before he ventured 
forth peeped out to reconnoitre, — he again raised 
her in his arms, and by her direction struck into 
a narrow lane skirting the bank of the river. 

Pursuing this road for about half a mile, he 
arrived at the foot of a small knoll, covered by a 
clump of magnificent beech-trees, and still acting 
under the guidance of the dying woman, whose 
voice grew more feeble each instant, he mounted 
it, and from its summit took a rapid survey of 
the surrounding country. On the opposite bank 
of the river stood an old hall, while further on, at 
some distance, he could perceive through the 
trees the gables and chimneys of another ancient 

u Raise me up," said Elizabeth Orton, as he 
lingered on this spot for a moment. " In that 
old house, which you see yonder, Hulme Hall, I 
was born. I would willingly take one look at it 
before I die." 

" And the other hall which I discern through 
the trees is Ordsall, is it not ? " inquired the 



" It is," replied the prophetess. (l And now 
let us make what haste we can. We have not 
far to go ; and I feel I shall not last long. 11 

Descending the eminence, and again entering 
the lane, which here made a turn, the soldier 
approached a grassy space, walled in on either 
side by steep sandstone rocks. At the further 
extremity of the enclosure, after a moment's 
search, by the direction of his companion, he 
found, artfully concealed by overhanging brush- 
wood, the mouth of a small cave. He crept into 
the excavation, and found it about six feet high, 
and of considerable depth. The roof was orna- 
mented with Runic characters and other grotesque 
and half-effaced inscriptions, while the sides were 
embellished with Gothic tracery, amid which the 
letters I.H.S, carved in ancient church text, could 
be easily distinguished. Tradition assigned the 
cell to the priests of Odin, but it was evident that 
worshippers at other and holier altars had more 
recently made it their retreat. Its present occu- 
pant had furnished it with a straw pallet and a 
small wooden crucifix fixed in a recess in the wall. 
Gently depositing her upon the pallet, the soldier 


took a seat beside her on a stone slab at the foot 
of the bed. He next, at her request, as the cave 
was rendered almost wholly dark by the over- 
hanging trees, struck a light, and set fire to a 
candle placed within a lantern. 

After a few moments passed in prayer, the 
recluse begged him to give her the crucifix that 
she might clasp it to her breast. This done, she 
became more composed, and prepared to meet her 
end. Suddenly, as if something had again dis- 
turbed her, she opened wide her glazing eyes, and 
starting up with a dying effort, stretched out her 

61 I see him before them ! " she cried. " They 
examine him, — they adjudge him ! Ah ! he is 
now in a dungeon ! See, the torturers advance ! 
He is placed on the rack — once — twice — thrice 
— they turn the levers ! His joints snap in their 
sockets — his sinews crack ! Mercy ! he con- 
fesses ! He is led to execution. I see him 
ascend the scaffold !" 

" Whom do you behold?" inquired the sol- 
dier, listening to her in astonishment. 

" His face is hidden from me," replied the 


prophetess ; " but his figure is not unlike your 
own. Ha ! I hear the executioner pronounce his 
name. How are you called ?" 

" Guy Fawkes," replied the soldier. 

"It is the name I heard," rejoined Elizabeth 

And, sinking backward, she expired. 

Guy Fawkes gazed at her for some time till he 
felt assured that the last spark of life had fled. 
He then turned away, and placing his hand upon 
his chin, became lost in deep reflection. 

ju\( JWhL&s i I C&' 




Soon after sunset, on the evening of the events 
previously related, the inmates of Ordsall Hall 
were disturbed and alarmed (for in those times 
of trouble any casual disturbance at night was 
sufficient to occasion alarm to a Catholic family) 
by a loud clamour for admittance from some one 
stationed at the farther side of the moat, then, as 
now, surrounding that ancient manorial residence. 
The drawbridge being raised, no apprehension 
was entertained of an attempt at forcible entrance 
on the part of the intruder, who, so far as he 
could be discerned in the deepening twilight, 
rendered yet more obscure by the shade of the 
trees under which he stood, appeared to be a 
solitary horseman. Still, for fear of a surprise, it 
was judged prudent by those inside the hall to 


turn a deaf ear to the summons ; nor was it until 
it had been more than once repeated in a per- 
emptory tone that any attention was paid to it. 
The outer gate was then cautiously opened by an 
old steward, and a couple of serving-men, armed 
with pikes and swords, who demanded the 
stranger's business, and were answered that he 
desired to speak with Sir William RadclifTe. 
The steward rejoined that his master was not at 
home, having set out the day before for Chester ; 
but that even if he were, he would take upon 
himself to affirm that no audience would be 
given, on any pretence whatever, to a stranger 
at such an unseasonable hour. To this the other 
replied, in a haughty and commanding voice, that 
he was neither a stranger to Sir William Rad- 
clifTe, nor ignorant of the necessity of caution, 
though in this instance it was altogether super- 
fluous ; and, as notwithstanding the steward's 
assertion to the contrary, he was fully persuaded 
his master was at home, he insisted upon being 
conducted to him without further parley, as his 
business would not brook delay. In vain the 
steward declared he had spoken the truth. The 


stranger evidently disbelieved him ; but, as he 
could obtain no more satisfactory answer to his 
interrogations, he suddenly shifted his ground, 
and inquired whether Sir William's daughter, 
Mistress Viviana, was likewise absent from home. 

" Before I reply to the question, I must know 
by whom and wherefore it is put?" returned the 
steward, evasively. 

" Trouble not yourself further, friend, but 
deliver this letter to her," rejoined the horseman, 
flinging a packet across the moat. "It is ad- 
dressed to her father, but there is no reason why 
she should not be acquainted with its contents." 

" Take it up, Olin Birtwissel," cried the 
steward, eyeing the packet which had fallen at 
his feet suspiciously, — " take it up, I say, and 
hold it to the light, that I may consider it well 
before I carry it to our young mistress. I have 
heard of strange treacheries practised by such 
means, and care not to meddle with it." , 

" Neither do I, good Master Heydocke," re- 
plied Birtwissel. " I would not touch it for a 
twelvemonth's wages. It may burst, and spoil 
my good looks, and so ruin my fortunes with the 



damsels. But here is Jeff Gellibronde, who 
having no beauty to lose, and being, moreover, 
afraid of nothing, will pick it up for you." 

" Speak for yourself, Olin," rejoined Gelli- 
bronde, in a surly tone. " I have no more fancy 
for a shattered limb, or a scorched face, than my 

" Dolts !" cried the stranger, who had listened 
to these observations with angry impatience, " if 
you will not convey my packet, which has no- 
thing more dangerous about it than an ordinary 
letter, to your mistress, at least acquaint her that 
Mr. Robert Catesby, of Ashby St. Legers, is 
without, and craves an instant speech with her." 

" Mr. Catesby!" exclaimed the steward, in 
astonishment. " If it be indeed your worship, 
why did you not declare yourself at once ? " 

" I may have as good reason for caution as 
yourself, Master Heydocke," returned Catesby, 

" True, 1 ' rejoined the steward ; " but, me- 
thinks, it is somewhat strange to find your wor- 
ship here, when I am aware that my master ex- 
pected to meet you, and certain other honourable 


gentlemen that you wot of, at a place in a clean 
opposite direction, — Holywell, in Flintshire." 

" The cause of my presence, since you desire 
to be certified of the matter, is simply this,"" 
replied Catesby, urging his steed towards the 
edge of the moat, while the steward advanced tg 
meet him on the opposite bank, so that a few 
yards only lay between them ; " I came round 
by Manchester," he continued in a lower tone, 
" to see if any assistance could be rendered 
to the unfortunate fathers Woodroofe and For- 
shawe ; but found on my arrival this morning that 
I was too late, as they had just been executed." 

" Heaven have mercy on their souls ! " ejacu- 
lated Heydocke, shuddering, and crossing him- 
self. " Yours was a pious mission, Mr. Cates- 
by. Would it had been availing ! " 

" I would so, too, with all my soul ! " rejoined 
the other, fervently ; " but fate ordained it other- 
wise. While I was in the town, I accidentally 
learnt from one, who informed me he had just 
parted with him, that your master was at home ; 
and, fearing he might not be able to attend the 
meeting at Holywell, I resolved to proceed hither 


at nightfall, when my visit was not likely to be 
observed ; having motives, which you may rea- 
dily conjecture, for preserving the strictest secrecy 
on the occasion. The letter was prepared in case 
I should fail in meeting with him. And now 
that I have satisfied your scruples, good master 
steward, if Sir William be really within, I pray 
you lead me to him forthwith. If not, your 
young mistress must serve my turn, for I have 
that to say which it imports one or other of them 
to know." 

" In regard to my master," replied the steward, 
" he departed yesterday for Chester, on his way 
to join the pilgrimage to St. Winifred's Well, as 
I have already assured your worship. And who- 
ever informed you to the contrary, spoke falsely. 
But I will convey your letter and message to my 
young mistress, and on learning her pleasure as 
to receiving you, will instantly return, and report 
it. These are dangerous times, your worship, — ■ 
dangerous times. A good Catholic knows not 
whom to trust, there are so many spoilers abroad." 

" How, sirrah f " cried Catesby, angrily, " do 
you apply that observation to me ? " 


" Far be it from me," answered Heydocke, 
respectfully, " to apply any observation that may 
sound offensive to your worship, whom I know to 
be a most worthy gentleman, and as free from 
heresy, as any in the kingdom. I was merely 
endeavouring to account for what may appear my 
over-caution in detaining you where you are, till 
I learn my lady's pleasure. It is a rule in this 
house not to lower the drawbridge without orders 
after sunset ; and I dare not, for my place, dis- 
obey it. Young Mr. Humphrey Chetham, of 
Crumpsall, was detained in the like manner no later 
than last night ; and he is a visiter," he added, in 
a significant tone, " who is not altogether unwel- 
come to my mistress — ahem ! But duty is no 
respecter of persons ; and in my master's absence 
my duty is to protect his household. Your wor- 
ship will pardon me." 

" I will pardon anything but your loquacity 
and tediousness, 11 rejoined Catesby, impatiently. 
" About your errand quickly. 1 '' 

" I am gone, your worship,'" returned the 
steward, disappearing with his companions. 

Throwing the bridle over his horse's neck, and 


allowing him to drink his fill from the water of 
the moat, and afterwards to pluck a few mouth- 
fuls of the long grass that fringed its brink, 
Catesby abandoned himself to reflection. In a 
few moments, as the steward did not return, he 
raised his eyes, and fixed them upon the ancient 
habitation before him, — ancient, indeed, it was 
not at this time, having been in a great measure 
rebuilt by its possessor, Sir William RadclifTe, 
during the latter part of the reign of Elizabeth, 
in the rich and picturesque style of that period. 
Little could be distinguished of its projecting and 
retiring wings, its walls decorated with black and 
white chequer-work, the characteristic of the class 
of architecture to which it belonged, or of its 
magnificent embayed windows filled with stained 
glass ; but the outline of its heavy roof, with its 
numerous gables, and groups of tall and elabo- 
rately-ornamented chimneys might be distinctly 
traced in strong relief against the warm and still- 
glowing western sky. 

Though much gone to decay, grievously neg- 
lected, and divided into three separate dwelling- 
houses, Ordsall Hall still retains much of its 


original character and beauty ; and viewed at the 
magic hour above described, when the changes 
produced by the lapse of years cannot be de- 
tected, it presents much the same striking ap- 
pearance that it offered to the gaze of Catesby. 
Situated on the north bank of the Irwell, which 
supplies the moat with a constant stream of fresh 
water, it commands on the south-west a beautiful 
view of the winding course of the river here al- 
most forming an island, of Trafford Park and its 
hall, of the woody uplands beyond it, and of the 
distant hills of Cheshire. The mansion itself is 
an irregular quadrangle, covering a considerable 
tract of ground. The gardens, once exquisitely 
laid out in the formal taste of Elizabeth's days, 
are also enclosed by the moat, surrounding (ex- 
cept in the intervals where it is filled up) a space 
of some acres in extent. At the period of this 
history, it was approached on the north-east by a 
noble avenue of sycamores, leading to within a 
short distance of its gates. 

As Catesby surveyed this stately structure, and 
pondered upon the wealth and power of its owner, 
his meditations thus found vent in words : — " If 


I could but link Radcliffe to our cause, or win . 
the hand of his fair daughter, and so bind him to 
me, the great attempt could not fail. She has 
refused me once. No matter. — I will persevere 
till she yields. With Father Oldcorne to back 
my suit, I am assured of success. She is neces- 
sary to my purpose, and shall be mine. r> 

Descended from an ancient Northamptonshire 
family, and numbering among his ancestry the 
well-known minister of the same name, who flou- 
rished in the reign of Richard the .Third, Robert 
Catesby, — at this time about forty, — had in his 
youth led a wild and dissolute life ; and though 
bred in the faith of Rome, he had for some years 
abandoned its worship. In 1580, when the Je- 
suits, Campion and Persons, visited England, 
he was reconciled to the church he had quitted, 
and thenceforth became as zealous a supporter and 
promoter of its doctrines as he had heretofore 
been their bitter opponent. He was now actively 
engaged in all the Popish plots of the period, and 
was even supposed to be connected with those 
designs of a darker dye which were set on foot for 
Elizabeth's destruction, — with Somerville's con- 


spiracy, — -with that of Arden and Throckmorton, 
— the latter of whom was his uncle on the mater- 
nal side, — with the plots of Bury and Savage,— 
of Ballard, — and of Babington. After the exe- 
cution of the unfortunate Queen of Scots, he 
devoted himself to what was termed the Spanish 
faction, and endeavoured to carry out the schemes 
of a party, who, distrusting the vague promises of 
James, were anxious to secure the succession to a 
Catholic, — the Infanta of Spain, or the Duke of 
Parma. On the insurrection of the Earl of 
Essex, he took part with that ill-fated nobleman ; 
and, though he escaped condign punishment for 
the offence, he was imprisoned and heavily fined. 
From this time his career ran in darker chan- 
nels. " Hunger-starved for innovation," as he 
is finely described by Camden, — imbued with the 
fiercest religious fanaticism, — eloquent, wily, reso- 
lute, — able alike to delude the powerful and inti- 
midate the weak, — he possessed all the ingre- 
dients of a conspirator. Associating with men 
like himself, of desperate character and broken 
fortunes, he was ever on the look out for some 
means of retrieving his own condition, and re- 


dressing the wrongs of his church. Well inform- 
ed of the actual state of James's sentiments, when, 
on that monarch's accession, confident hopes were 
entertained by the Romanists of greater toleration 
for their religion, Catesby was the first to point 
out their mistake, and to foretel the season of 
terrible persecution that was at hand. On this 
persecution he grounded his hopes — hopes, never 
realized, for the sufferers, amid all the grievances 
they endured, remained constant in their fidelity 
to the throne— of exciting a general insurrection 
among the Catholics. 

Disappointed in this expectation, — disappoint- 
ed, also, in his hopes of Spain, of France, and of 
aid from Rome, he fell back upon himself, and 
resolved upon the execution of a dark and dreadful 
project which he had long conceived, and which he 
could execute almost single-handed, without aid 
from foreign powers, and without the co-operation 
of his own party. The nature of this project, which, 
if it succeeded, would, he imagined, accomplish 
all or more than his wildest dreams of ambition 
or fanaticism had ever conceived, it will be the 
business of this history to develope. Without 


going further into detail at present, it may be 
mentioned that the success of the plot depended 
so entirely on its secrecy, and so well aware was 
its contriver of the extraordinary system of espi- 
onage carried on by the Earl of Salisbury and the 
Privy Council, that for some time he scarcely 
dared to trust it out of his own keeping. At 
length, after much deliberation, he communicated 
it to five others, all of whom were bound to si- 
lence by an oath of unusual solemnity ; and as 
it was necessary to the complete success of the 
conspiracy that its outbreak should be instan- 
taneously followed by a rise on the part of the 
Catholics, he darkly hinted that a plan was on 
foot for their deliverance from the yoke of their 
oppressors, and counselled them to hold them- 
selves in readiness to fly to arms at a moment's 
notice. But here again he failed. Few were 
disposed to listen to him ; and of those who 
did, the majority returned for answer, " that their 
part was endurance, and that the only arms which 
Christians could use against lawful powers in their 
severity were prayers and tears." 

Among the Popish party of that period, as in 


our own time, were ranked many of the oldest 
and most illustrious families in the kingdom, — 
families not less remarkable for their zeal for their 
religion than, as has before been observed, for 
their loyalty ; — a loyalty afterwards approved in 
the disastrous reign of James the Second, by their 
firm adherence to what they considered the in- 
defeasible right of inheritance. Plots, indeed, 
were constantly hatched throughout the reigns of 
Elizabeth and James by persons professing the 
religion of Rome ; but in these the mass of the 
Catholics had no share. And even in the seasons 
of the bitterest persecution, when every fresh act 
of treason, perpetrated by some lawless and dis- 
affected individual, was visited with additional 
rigour on their heads, — when the scaffold reeked 
with their blood, and the stake smoked with their 
ashes, — when their quarters were blackening on 
the gates and market-crosses of every city in the 
realm, — when their hearths were invaded, their 
religion proscribed, and the very name of Papist 
had become a by-word, — even in those terrible 
seasons, as in the season under consideration, they 
remained constant in their fidelity to the crown. 


From the troubled elements at work some 
fierce and turbulent spirits were sure to arise, — 
some gloomy fanatics who, having brooded over 
their wrongs, real or imaginary, till they had lost 
all scruples of conscience, hesitated at no means 
of procuring redress. But it would be unjust to 
hold up such persons as representatives of the 
whole body of Catholics. Among the conspira- 
tors themselves there were redeeming shades. 
All were not actuated by the same atrocious 
motives. Mixed feelings induced Catesby to 
adopt the measure. Not so Guy Fawkes, who 
had already been leagued with the design. One 
idea alone ruled him. A soldier of fortune, but 
a stern religious enthusiast, he supposed himself 
chosen by Heaven for the redemption of his 
Church, and cared not what happened to himself, 
provided he accomplished his (as he conceived) 
holy design. 

In considering the causes which produced the 
conspiracy about to be related, and in separating 
the disaffected party of the Papists from the tem- 
perate, due weight must be given to the influence 
of the priesthood. Of the Romish clergy there 


were two classes — the secular priests, and the 
Jesuits and missionaries. While the former, like 
the more moderate of the laity, would have been 
well-contented with toleration for their religion, 
the latter breathed nothing but revenge, and de- 
sired the utter subversion of the existing govern- 
ment, — temporal as well as ecclesiastical. Men, 
for the most part, of high intellectual powers, of 
untiring energy, and unconquerable fortitude, 
they were enabled by their zeal and ability to 
make many proselytes. By their means, secret 
correspondence was carried on with the different 
courts of Europe ; and they were not without 
hope that, taking advantage of some favourable 
crisis, they should yet restore their church to its 
former supremacy. To these persons, — who held 
as a maxim, " Qui religionem Catholicam deserit 
regnandi jus omne amisit" — Catesby and his 
associates proved ready and devoted agents. 
Through their instrumentality, they hoped to 
accomplish the great work of their restoration. 
To Father Garnet, the provincial of the English 
Jesuits, of whom it will be necessary to speak 
more fully hereafter, the plot had been revealed 


by Catesby under the seal of confession ; and, 
though it subsequently became a question whe- 
ther he was justified in withholding a se- 
cret of such importance to the state, it is suf- 
ficient for the present purpose to say that he did 
withhold it. For the treasonable practices of the 
Jesuits and their faction some palliation may per- 
haps be found in the unrelenting persecution to 
which they were subjected ; but if any excuse can 
be admitted for them, what opinion must be 
formed of the conduct of their temperate bre- 
thren ? Surely, while the one is condemned, 
admiration may be mingled with the sympathy 
which must be felt for the unmerited sufferings of 
the other ! 

x From the foregoing statement, it will be rea- 
dily inferred that Sir William Radcliffe, a devout 
Catholic, and a man of large possessions, though 
somewhat reduced by the heavy fines imposed 
upon him as a recusant, must have appeared an 
object of importance to the conspirators ; nor will 
it be wondered at, that every means were used to 
gain him to their cause. Acting, however, upon 
the principles that swayed the well-disposed of 


his party, the knight resisted all these overtures, 
and refused to take any share in proceedings from 
which his conscience and loyalty alike revolted. 
Baffled, but not defeated, Catesby returned to 
the charge on a new point of assault. Himself a 
widower (or supposed to be so), he solicited the 
hand of the lovely Viviana Radcliffe, Sir Wil- 
liam's only child, and the sole heiress of his 
possessions. But his suit in this quarter was, 
also, unsuccessful. The knight rejected the pro- 
posal, alleging that his daughter had no inclina- 
tion to any alliance, inasmuch as she entertained 
serious thoughts of vowing herself to Heaven. 
Thus foiled, Catesby ostensibly relinquished his 

Shortly before the commencement of this his- 
tory, a pilgrimage to Saint Winifred's Well, in 
Flintshire, was undertaken by Father Garnet, the 
provincial of the Jesuists before mentioned, in 
company with several distinguished Catholic per- 
sonages of both sexes, and to this ceremonial Sir 
William and his daughter were urgently bidden. 
The invitation was declined on the part of Vivi- 
ana, but accepted by the knight, who, though 


unwilling to leave home at a period of so much 
danger, or to commit his daughter to any care but 
his own, even for so short a space, felt it to be 
his duty to give countenance by his presence to 
the ceremonial. 

Accordingly, he departed for Chester on the 
previous day, as stated by the steward. And, 
though Catesby professed ignorance on the sub- 
ject, and even affirmed he had heard to the con- 
trary, it may be doubted whether he was not 
secretly informed of the circumstance, and whe- 
ther his arrival, at this particular conjuncture, was 
not preconcerted. 

Thus much in explanation of what is to follow. 
— The course of Catesby's reflections was cut 
short by the return of the steward, who, inform- 
ing him that he had his mistress's commands to 
admit him, immediately lowered the drawbridge 
for that purpose. Dismounting, and committing 
his steed to one of the serving-men, who advanced 
to take it, Catesby followed his conductor through 
a stone gateway, and crossing the garden, was 
ushered into a spacious and lofty hall, furnished 
with a long massy oak table, at the upper end of 

VOL. I. D 


which was a raised dais. At one side of the 
chamber yawned a huge arched fire-place, gar- 
nished with enormous andirons, on which smoul- 
dered a fire composed of mixed turf and wood. 
Above the chimney-piece hung a suit of chain- 
armour, with the battle-axe, helmet, and gauntlets 
of Sir John Radcliffe, the first possessor of Ords- 
all, who flourished in the reign of Edward the 
First : on the right, masking the entrance, stood 
a magnificent screen of carved oak. 

Traversing this hall, Heydocke led the way to 
another large apartment ; and placing lights on a 
Gothic-shaped table, offered a seat to the new- 
comer, and departed. The room in which Cates- 
by was left was termed the star-chamber — a 
name retained to this day — from the circumstance 
of its ceiling being moulded and painted to re- 
semble the heavenly vault when studded with the 
luminaries of night. It was terminated by a 
deeply-embayed window filled with stained glass 
of the most gorgeous colours. The walls, in 
some places, were hung with arras, in others, 
wainscoted with dark, lustrous oak, embellished 
with scrolls, cyphers, and fanciful designs. The 


mantel-piece was of the same solid material, 
curiously carved, and of extraordinary size. It 
was adorned with the armorial bearings of the 
family — two bends engrailed, and in chief a label 
of three, — and other devices and inscriptions. 
The hearth was considerably raised above the 
level of the floor, and there was a peculiarity in 
the construction of the massive wooden pillars 
flanking it, that attracted the attention of Cates- 
by, who rose with the intention of examining 
them more narrowly, when he was interrupted by 
the entrance of the lady of the mansion. 

Advancing at a slow and dignified pace, Vi- 
viana RadclifFe courteously but gravely saluted 
her guest ; and, without offering him her hand, 
motioned him to a chair, while she seated herself 
at a little distance. Catesby had seen her twice 
before; and whether the circumstances under 
which they now met might have caused some 
change in her demeanour he could not tell, but he 
thought her singularly altered. A year ago, she 
had been a lively, laughing girl of seventeen, with 
a bright brown skin, dark flowing tresses, and 
eyes as black and radiant as those of a gipsy. 



She was now a grave, collected woman, infinitely 
more beautiful, but wholly changed in character. 
Her complexion had become a clear, transparent 
white, and set off to great advantage her large, 
luminous eyes, and jetty brows. Her figure was 
tall and majestic ; her features regular, delicately 
formed, and of the rarest 'and proudest class of 
beauty. She was attired in a dress of black 
wrought velvet, entirely without ornament except 
the rosary at her girdle, with a small ebony cru- 
cifix attached to it. She wore a close-fitting cap, 
likewise of black velvet, edged with pearls, be- 
neath which her raven tresses were gathered in 
such a manner as to display most becomingly the 
smooth and snowy expanse of her forehead. The 
gravity of her manner, not less than her charms 
of person, seemed to have struck Catesby mute. 
He gazed on her in silent admiration for a brief 
space, utterly forgetful of the object of his visit, 
and the part he intended to play. During this 
pause, she maintained the most perfect composure, 
and fixing her dark eyes full upon him, appeared 
to await the moment when he might choose to 
open the conversation. 


Notwithstanding his age, and the dissolute and 
distracted life he had led, Catesby was still good- 
looking enough to have produced a favourable 
impression upon any woman easily captivated by 
manly beauty. The very expression of his mark- 
ed and peculiar physiognomy, — in some degree an 
index to his character, — was sufficient to rivet 
attention ; and the mysterious interest generally 
inspired by his presence was not diminished on 
further acquaintance with him. Though some- 
what stern in their expression, his features were 
strikingly handsome, cast in an oval mould, and 
clothed with the pointed beard and trimmed 
mustaches invariably met with in the portraits 
of Vandyck. His frame was strongly built, but 
well proportioned, and seemed capable of endur- 
ing the greatest fatigue. His dress was that of 
an ordinary gentleman of the period, and con- 
sisted of a doublet of quilted silk, of sober colour 
and stout texture ; large trunk-hose swelling out 
at the hips ; and buff boots, armed with spurs 
with immense rowels. He wore a high and 
stiffly-starched ruff round his throat; and his 
apparel was completed by a short cloak of brown 


cloth, lined with silk of a similar colour. His 
arms were rapier and poniard, and his high- 
crowned plumed hat, of the peculiar form then 
in vogue, and looped on the " leer-side " with 
a diamond clasp, was thrown upon the table. 

Some little time having elapsed, during which 
he made no effort to address her, Viviana broke 

" I understood you desired to speak with me 
on a matter of urgency, Mr. Catesby," she 

" I did so," he replied, as if aroused from a 
reverie ; " and I can only excuse my absence of 
mind and ill manners, on the plea that the con- 
templation of your charms has driven all other 
matter out of my head." 

" Mr. Catesby," returned Viviana, rising, " if 
the purpose of your visit be merely to pay un- 
merited compliments, I must at once put an end 
to it." 

" I have only obeyed the impulse of my 
heart," resumed the other, passionately, " and 
uttered what involuntarily rose to my lips. But," 
he added, checking himself, " I will not offend 


you with my admiration. If you have read my 
letter to your father, you will not require to be 
informed of the object of my visit. 11 

" I have not read it, 11 replied Viviana, return* 
ing him the packet with the seal unbroken. " I 
can give no opinion on any matter of difficulty. 
And I have no desire to know any secret with 
which my father might not desire me to be ac- 

" Are we overheard? 11 inquired Catesby, glan- 
cing suspiciously at the fire-place. 

" By no one whom you would care to overhear 
us, 11 returned the maiden. 

" Then it is as I supposed, 11 rejoined Catesby. 
" Father Oldcorne is concealed behind that 
mantel-piece ?" 

Viviana smiled an affirmative. 

" Let him come forth, I pray you, 11 returned 
Catesby. " What I have to say concerns him 
as much as yourself or your father ; and I would 
gladly have his voice in the matter. 11 

" You shall have it, my son, 11 replied a re- 
verend personage, clad in a priestly garb, stepping 
from out one side of the mantel-piece, which 


flew suddenly open, disclosing a recess curiously 
contrived in the thickness of the wall. " You 
shall have it," said Father Oldcorne, for he it 
was, approaching and extending his arms over 
him. " Accept my blessing and my welcome.'" 

Catesby received the benediction with bowed 
head and bended knee. 

" And now," continued the priest, " what has 
the bravest soldier of our Church to declare to its 
lowliest servant?" 

Catesby then briefly explained, as he had 
before done to the steward, why he had taken 
Manchester in his route to North Wales ; and, 
after lamenting his inability to render any assist- 
ance to the unfortunate priests, he went on to 
state that he had accidentally learnt, from a few 
words let fall by the pursuivant to his attendant, 
that a warrant had been sent by the Earl of Sa- 
lisbury for Sir William RadclifiVs arrest. 

" My father's arrest ! " exclaimed Viviana, 
trembling violently. " What — what is laid to 
his charge ? " 

" Felony," rejoined Catesby, sternly — " fe- 
lony, without benefit of clergy — for so it is 


accounted by the present execrable laws of our 
land, — in harbouring a Jesuit priest. If he is 
convicted of the offence, his punishment will be 
death — death on the gibbet, accompanied by in- 
dignities worse than those shown to a common 

" Holy Virgin ! " ejaculated Father Oldcorne, 
lifting up his hands, and raising his eyes to 

" From what I gathered the officers will visit 
this house to-night," continued Catesby. 

" Our Lady be praised, they will not find 
him ! " cried Viviana, who had been thrown into 
an agony of distress. M What is to be done in 
this frightful emergency, holy father ? " she add- 
ed, turning to the priest, with a supplicating look. 

" Heaven only knows, dear daughter," replied 
Oldcorne. " You had better appeal for counsel 
to one who is more able to afford it than I am, — 
Mr. Catesby. Well aware of the crafty devices 
of our enemies, and having often eluded their 
snares himself, he may enable you to escape them. 
My own course is clear. I shall quit this roof 
at once, deeply and bitterly regretting that by 

d 5 


entering it, I have placed those whom I hold so 
dear, and from whom I have experienced so 
much kindness, in such fearful jeopardy." 

" Oh, no, father ! " exclaimed Viviana, " you 
shall not go." 

" Daughter," replied Oldcorne, solemnly, " I 
have long borne the cross of Christ, — have long 
endured the stripes, inflicted upon me by the 
adversaries of our faith, in patience ; and my 
last actions and last breath shall testify to the 
truth of our holy religion. But, though I could 
endure aught on my own account, I cannot con- 
sent to bring misery and destruction upon others. 
Hinder me not, dear daughter. I will go at 

" Hold, father IV interposed Catesby. " The 
step you would take may bring about what you 
are most anxious to avoid. If you are discovered 
and apprehended in this neighbourhood, suspicion 
will still attach to your protectors, and the secret 
of your departure will be wrung from some of the 
more timid of the household. Tarry where you 
are. Let the pursuivant make his search. I will 
engage to baffle his vigilance." 


" He speaks the truth, dear father,''' returned 
Viviana. " You must not — shall not depart. 
There are plenty of hiding-places, as you know, 
within the mansion. Let them be as rigorous as 
they may in their search, they will not discover 

" Whatever course you adjudge best for the 
security of others I will pursue," rejoined Old- 
corne, turning to Catesby. " Put me out of the 
question." * 

" My opinion has already been given, father," 
replied Catesby. " Remain where you are." 

" But, if the officers should ascertain that my 
father is at Chester, and pursue him thither ? " 
cried Viviana, suddenly struck by a new cause of 

" A messenger must be immediately despatch- 
ed after him to give him warning," returned 

" Will you be that messenger ? " asked the 
maiden, eagerly. 

" I would shed my heart's best blood to plea- 
sure you," returned Catesby. 

" Then I may count upon this service, for 


which, rest assured, I will not prove ungrateful," 
she rejoined. 

M You may," answered Catesby. " And yet 
I would, on Father Oldcorne's account, that my 
departure might be delayed till to-morrow." 

" The delay might be fatal," cried Viviana. 
u You must be in Chester before that time." 

" Doubt it not," returned Catesby. a Charged 
with your wishes, the wind shall scarcely outstrip 
my speed." 

So saying, he marched irresolutely towards the 
door, as if about to depart, when, just as he had 
reached it, he turned sharply round, and threw 
himself at Viviana's feet. 

" Forgive me, Miss Radcliffe," he cried, " if 
I once again, even at a critical moment like the 
present, dare to renew ray suit. I fancied I had 
subdued my passion for you, but your presence 
has awakened it with greater violence than ever." 

" Rise, sir, I pray," rejoined the maiden, in an 
offended tone. 

" Hear me, I beseech you," continued Cates- 
by, seizing her hand. " Before you reject my 
suit, consider well that in these perilous seasons, 


when no true Catholic can call his life his own, 
you may need a protector." 

" In the event you describe, Mr. Catesby," 
answered Viviana, a I would at once fulfil the 
intention I have formed of devoting myself to 
Heaven, and retire to the convent of Benedictine 
nuns, founded by Lady Mary Percy, at Brus- 

" You would much more effectually serve the 
cause of your religion by acceding to my suit," 1 
observed Catesby, rising. 

" How so ? " she inquired. 

" Listen to me, Miss Radcliffe," he rejoined, 
gravely, " and let my words be deeply graven 
upon your heart. In your hands rests the destiny 
of the Catholic Church/ 1 

" In mine ! " exclaimed Viviana. 

" In yours,*" returned Catesby. " A mighty 
blow is about to be struck for her deliver- 
ance. 1 ' 

M Ay, marry, is it," cried Oldcorne, with sud- 
den fervour. " Redemption draweth nigh ; the 
year of visitation approacheth to an end ; and 
jubilation is at hand. England shall again be 


called a happy realm, a blessed country, a reli- 
gious people. Those who knew the former glory 
of religion shall lift up their hands for joy to see 
it returned again. Righteousness shall prosper, 
and infidelity be plucked up by the root. False 
error shall vanish like smoke, and they which saw 
it shall say where is it become ? The daughters 
of Babylon shall be cast down, and in the dust 
lament their ruin. Proud heresy shall strike her 
sail, and groan as a beast crushed under a cart- 
wheel. The memory of novelties shall perish 
with a crack, and as a ruinous house falling to 
the ground. Repent, ye seducers, with speed, 
and prevent the dreadful wrath of the Powerable. 
He will come as flame that burneth out beyond 
the furnace. His fury shall fly forth as thunder, 
and pitch upon their- tops that malign him. They 
shall perish in his fury, and melt like wax before 
the fire." 

" Amen !" ejaculated Catesby, as the priest 
concluded " You have spoken prophetically, 

" I have but recited a prayer transmitted to 
me by Father Garnet," rejoined Oldcorne. 


" Do you discern any hidden meaning in it ? " 
demanded Catesby. 

" Yea, verily, my son," returned the priest. 
" In the 'false error vanishing like smoke,'' — 
in the 6 house perishing with a crack,' — and in 
the ' fury flying forth as thunder, 1 — I read 
the mode the great work shall be brought about." 

" And you applaud the design ? " asked Cates- 
by, eagerly. 

" Non vero factum probo, sed eventum amo" 
rejoined the priest. 

a The secret is safe in your keeping, father?" 
asked Catesby, uneasily. 

" As if it had been disclosed to me in private 
confession," replied Oldcorne. 

" Hum ! " muttered Catesby. " Confessions 
of as much consequence to the state have ere now 
been revealed, father." 

" A decree has been passed by his holiness, 
Clement VIII, forbidding all such revelations," 
replied Oldcorne. " And the question has been 
recently propounded by a learned brother of our 
order, Father Antonio Delrio, who, in his Ma- 
gical Disquisitions, putteth it thus : — s Supposing 


a malefactor shall confess that he himself or some 
other has laid Gunpowder, or the like combus- 
tible matter, under a building — ' M 

" Ha ! " exclaimed Catesby, starting, 

" — 'And, unless it be taken away,'" proceeded 
the priest, regarding him fixedly, " c the whole 
house will be burnt, the prince destroyed, and as 
many as go into or out of the city will come to 
great mischief or peril ! ' " * 

" Well !" exclaimed Catesby. 

" The point then arises," continued Oldcome, 
<c whether the priest may make use of the secret 
thus obtained for the good of the government, 
and the averting of such danger ; and, after fully 
discussing it, Father Delrio decides in the ne- 

" Enough," returned Catesby. 

" By whom is the blow to be struck ?" asked 
Viviana, who had listened to the foregoing dis- 
course in silent wonder. 

* Confitetur maleficus se vel alium posuisse pulverem 
vel quid aliud sub tali limine, et nisi tollantur domum com- 
burendam, principem interiturum, quotquot urbem egre- 
dienturque in magnam perniciem aut periculum venturos. — 
Delrio Disq. Mag., lib. vi. cap. i. \_Edit. 1G00.] 


" By me," answered Catesby. " It is for you 
to nerve my arm.'" 

" You speak in riddles," she replied. " I 
understand you not." 

" Question Father Oldcorne then, as to my 
meaning," rejoined Catesby ; "he will tell you 
that, allied to you, I could not fail in the enter- 
prise on which I am engaged." 

" It is the truth, dear daughter," Oldcorne 

" I will not inquire further into this mystery," 
returned Viviana, u for such it is to me. But, 
believing what you both assert, I answer, that 
willingly as I would lay down my life for the 
welfare of our holy religion, persuading myself, 
as I do, that I have constancy enough to endure 
martyrdom for its sake, — I cannot consent to your 
proposal. Nay, if I must avouch the whole 
truth," she continued, blushing deeply, "my 
affections are already engaged, — though to one 
with whom I can never hope to be united." 

" You have your answer, my son," observed 
the priest. 

Catesby replied with a look of the deepest mor- 


tification and disappointment ; and, bowing coldly 
to Viviana, said, " I now depart to obey your 
behests, Miss Radcliffe." 

" Commend me in all duty to my dear father," 
replied Viviana, " and believe that I shall for 
ever feel bound to you for your zeal." 

" Neglect not all due caution, father," ob- 
served Catesby, glancing significantly at Oldcorne. 
4< Forewarned, forearmed." 

" Doubt me not, my son," rejoined the Jesuit. 

" My prayers shall be for you. 

Gentem auferte perfidam 
Credentium de finibus, 
Ut Christo laudes debitas 
Persolvamus alacriter." 

After receiving a parting benediction from the 
priest, Catesby took his leave. His steed was 
speedily brought to the door by the old steward ; 
and mounting it, he crossed the drawbridge, 
which was immediately raised behind him, and 
hastened on his journey. 




Immediately after Catesby's departure, Hey- 
docke was summoned to his mistress's presence. 
He found her with the priest, and was informed 
that in all probability the house would be visited 
that night by the messengers of the Privy 
Council. The old steward received the intelli- 
gence as he might have done his death-warrant, 
and looked so bewildered and affrighted, that 
Viviana half repented having acquainted him 
with it. 

" Compose yourself, Master Heydocke," she 
said, trying to reason him out of his fears ; " the 
search may not take place. And if it does, there- 
is nothing to be alarmed at. I am not afraid, 
you perceive."' 1 

" Nothing to be alarmed at, my dear young 


lady ! " gasped the steward. " You have never 
witnessed a midnight search for a priest by these 
ruffianly catchpoles, as I have, or you would not 
say so. Father Oldcorne will comprehend my 
uneasiness, and excuse it. The miscreants break 
into the house like robbers, and treat its inmates 
worse than robbers would treat them. They 
have no regard for decency, — no consideration for 
sex, — no respect for persons. Not a chamber is 
sacred from them. If a door is bolted, they 
burst it open ; a cabinet locked, they tarry not 
for the key. They pull down the hangings, 
thrust their rapier-points into the crevices of the 
wainscot, discharge their fire-arms against the 
wall, and sometimes threaten to pull down the 
house itself, if the object of their quest be not 
delivered to them. Their oaths, abominations, 
and menaces are horrible ; and their treatment of 
females, even of your degree, honoured mistress, 
too barbarous to relate. Poor Lady Ncvil died 
of the fright she got by such a visit at dead of 
night to her residence in Holborn. Mrs. Vava- 
sour, of York, lost her senses ; and many others 
whom I could mention have been equal sufferers. 


Nothing to be alarmed at ! Heaven grant, my 
dear, dear young lady, that you may never be 
fatally convinced to the contrary !" 

" Suppose my apprehensions are as great as 
your own, Master Heydocke," replied Viviana, 
who, though somewhat infected by his terrors, 
still maintained her firmness ; " I do not see how 
the danger is to be averted by idle lamentations 
and misgivings. We must meet it boldly ; and 
trust to Him who is our only safeguard in the 
hour of peril, for protection. Do not alarm the 
household, but let all retire to rest as usual.'" 

" Right, daughter," observed the priest. 
" Preparations for resistance would only excite 

" Can you depend on the servants, in case 
they are examined ? " asked Viviana of the stew- 
ard, who by this time had partially recovered his 

" I think so," returned Heydocke ; " but the 
threats of the officers are so dreadful, and their 
conduct so violent and outrageous, that I can 
scarcely answer for myself. I would not advise 
your reverence to remain in that hiding-place," 


he added, pointing to the chimney-piece ; " they 
are sure to discover it." 

" If not here, where shall I conceal myself? 11 
rejoined Oldcorne, uneasily. 

" There are many nooks in which your rever- 
ence might hide," replied the steward ; " but the 
knaves are so crafty, and so well experienced in 
their vocation, that I dare not recommend any of 
them as secure. I would advise you to remain 
on the watch, and, in case of alarm, I will con- 
duct you to the oratory in the north gallery, 
adjoining Mistress Viviana's sleeping-chamber, 
where there is a panel in the wall, known only to 
myself and my master, opening upon a secret 
passage running many hundred yards under- 
ground, and communicating with a small out- 
building on the other side of the moat. There is 
a contrivance in this passage, which I will explain 
to your reverence if need be, which will cut off 
any possibility of pursuit in that quarter. 11 

" Be it so, 11 replied the priest. " I place my- 
self in your hands, good Master Heydocke, well 
assured of your fidelity. I shall remain through- 
out the night in this chamber, occupied in my 
devotions. 11 


" You will suffer mc to pray with you, father, 
I trust, 1 '' said Viviana. 

" If you desire it, assuredly, dear daughter," 
rejoined Oldcorne ; " but I am unwilling you 
should sacrifice your rest." 

c ' It will be no sacrifice, father, for I should 
not slumber, even if I sought my couch," she 
returned. " Go, good Heydocke. Keep vigi- 
lant watch : and, if you hear the slightest noise 
without, fail not to give us warning." 

The steward bowed, and departed. 

Some hours elapsed, during which nothing 
occurred to alarm .Viviana and her companion, 
who consumed the time in prayer and devout 
conversation ; when, just at the stroke of two, — 
as the former was kneeling before her spiritual 
adviser, and receiving absolution for the slight 
offences of which a being so pure-minded could 
be supposed capable, — a noise like the falling of 
a bar of iron was heard beneath the window. 
The priest turned pale, and cast a look of un- 
easiness at the maiden, who said nothing, but 
snatching up the light, and motioning him to 
remain quiet, hurried out of the room in search 


of the steward. He was nowhere to be found. 
In vain, she examined all the lower rooms, — in 
vain, called to him by name. No answer was 

Greatly terrified, she was preparing to retrace 
her steps, when she heard the sound of muttered 
voices in the hall. Extinguishing her light, she 
advanced to the door, which was left ajar, and, 
taking care not to expose herself to observation, 
beheld several armed figures, some of whom bore 
dark lanterns, while others surrounded and me- 
naced with their drawn swords the unfortunate 
steward. From their discourse she ascertained 
that, having thrown a plank across the moat, and 
concealed themselves within the garden until they 
had reconnoitred the premises, they had contrived 
to gain admittance unperceived through the win- 
dow of a small back room, in which they had 
surprised Heydocke, who had fallen asleep on 
his post, and captured him. One amongst their 
number, who appeared to act as leader, and 
whom, from his garb, and the white wand he 
carried, Viviana knew must be a pursuivant, now 
proceeded to interrogate the prisoner. To every 


question proposed to him the steward shook his 
head ; and, in spite of the threats of the exami ri- 
ant, and the blows of his followers, he persisted 
in maintaining silence. 

" If we cannot make this contumacious rascal 
speak, we will find others more tractable," ob- 
served the pursuivant. " I will not leave any 
corner of the house unvisited ; nor a soul within 
it unquestioned. Ah ! here they come ! " 

As he spoke, several of the serving-men, with 
some of the female domestics, who had been 
alarmed by the noise, rushed into the hall, and 
on seeing it filled with armed men, were about 
to retreat, when they were instantly seized and 
detained. A scene of great confusion now en- 
sued. The women screamed, and cried for 
mercy, while the men struggled and fought with 
their captors. Commanding silence at length, 
the pursuivant proclaimed in the King's name 
that whoever would guide him to the hiding- 
place of Father Oldcorne, a Jesuit priest, whom 
it was known, and could be proved, was har- 
boured within the mansion, should receive a free 
pardon and reward ; while those who screened 

VOL. i. e 


him, or connived at his concealment, were liable 
to fine, imprisonment, and even more severe 
punishment. Each servant was then questioned 
separately. But, though all were more or less 
rudely dealt with, no information could be 

Meanwhile, Viviana was a prey to the most 
intolerable anxiety. Unable to reach Father 
Oldcorne without crossing the hall, which she 
did not dare to attempt, she gave him up for 
lost ; her sole hope being that, on hearing the 
cries of the domestics, he would provide for his 
own safety. Her anxiety was still farther in- 
creased when the pursuivant, having exhausted 
his patience by fruitless interrogatories, and sa- 
tisfied his malice by frightening two of the 
females into fits, departed with a portion of his 
band to search the house, leaving the rest as a 
guard over the prisoners. 

Viviana then felt that, if she would save Father 
Oldcorne, the attempt must be made without a 
moment's delay, and at any hazard. Watching 
her opportunity, when the troopers were occupied, 
— some in helping themselves to such viands and 


liquors as they could lay hands upon, — some in 
searching the persons of the prisoners for amulets 
and relics, — "while others, more humane, 'were 
trying to revive the swooning women, she con- 
trived to steal unperceived across the lower end 
of the hall. Having gained the passage, she 
found to her horror that the pursuivant and his 
band were already within the star-chamber. 
They were sounding the walls with hammers 
and mallets, and from their exclamations, she 
learnt that they had discovered the retreat behind 
the fire-place, and were about to break it open. 

" We have him, 1 ' roared the pursuivant, in 
a voice of triumph. " The old owl's roost is 

Viviana, who stood at the door, drew in her 
breath, expecting that the next moment would 
inform her that the priest was made captive. 
Instead of this, she was delighted to find, from 
the oaths of rage and disappointment uttered by 
the troopers, that he had eluded them. 

" He must be in the house, at all events," 

growled the pursuivant ; " nor is it long since he 

quitted his hiding-place, as this cushion proves. 



We will not go away without him. And now, 
let us proceed to the upper chambers." 

Hearing their footsteps approach, Viviana 
darted off, and quickly ascending the principal 
staircase, entered a long corridor. Uncertain 
what to do, she was about to proceed to her own 
chamber, and bar the door, when she felt her arm 
grasped by a man. With difficulty repressing a 
shriek, she strove to disengage herself, when a 
whisper told her it was the priest, 

" Heaven be praised ! " cried Viviana, " you 
are safe. How — how did you escape ?" 

" I flew up stairs on hearing the voices,'' re- 
plied Oldcorne. " But what has happened to 
the steward ? " 

" He is a prisoner," replied Viviana. 

" All then is lost, unless you are acquainted 
with the secret panel he spoke of in the oratory." 
rejoined Oldcorne. 

" Alas ! father, I am wholly ignorant of it," 
she answered. " But, come with me into my 
chamber ; they will not dare to invade it." 

'* I know not that," returned the priest, de- 
spairingly. " These sacrilegious villains would 
not respect the sanctity of the altar itself." 


" They come ! " cried Viviana, as lights were 
seen at the foot of the stairs. " Take my hand 
— this way, father." 

They had scarcely gained the room, and fas- 
tened the door, when the pursuivant and his 
attendants appeared in the corridor. The officer, 
it would seem, had been well instructed where to 
search, or was sufficiently practised in his duty, 
for he proceeded at once to several hiding-places 
in the different chambers which he visited. In 
one room he detected a secret staircase in the 
wall, which he mounted, and discovered a small 
chapel built in the roof. Stripping it of its altar, 
its statue of the virgin, its crucifix, pix, chalice, 
and other consecrated vessels, he descended, and 
continued his search. Viviana's chamber was 
now the only one unvisited. Trying the door, 
and finding it locked, he tapped against it with 
his wand. 

" Who knocks ?" asked the maiden. 

" A state-messenger," was the reply. " I 
demand entrance in the King's name." 

" You cannot have it," she replied. " It is 
my sleeping-chamber.'" 

" My duty allows me no alternative," re- 


joined the pursuivant, harshly. M If you will not 
admit me quietly, I must use force." 

"Do you know to whom you offer this rude- 
ness?" returned Viviana. " I am the daughter 
of Sir William Radcliffe." 

" I know it," replied the pursuivant ; " but 
I am not exceeding my authority. I hold a 
warrant for your father's arrest. And, if he had 
not been from home, I should have carried him 
to prison along with the Jesuit priest, whom I 
suspect is concealed within your chamber. Open 
the door, I command you ; and do not hinder me 
in the execution of my duty." 

As no answer was returned to the application, 
the pursuivant commanded his men to burst open 
the door ; and the order was promptly obeyed. 

The chamber was empty. 

On searching it, however, the pursuivant found 
a door concealed by the hangings of the bed. It 
was bolted on the other side, but speedily yielded 
to his efforts. Passing through it, he entered 
upon a narrow gallery, at the extremity of which 
his progress was stopped by another door, likewise 
fastened on the further side. On bursting it 


open, he entered a small oratory, wainscoted with 
oak, and lighted by an oriel window filled with 
stained glass, through which the newly-risen moon 
was pouring its full radiance, and discovered the 
object of his search. 

" Father Oldcorne, I arrest you as a Jesuit 
and a traitor,'" shouted the pursuivant, in a voice 
of exultation. " Seize him ! " he added, calling 
to his men. 

" You shall not take him," cried Viviana, 
clinging despairingly to the priest, who offered no 
resistance, but clasped a crucifix to his breast. 

" Leave go your hold, young mistress,'" re- 
joined the pursuivant, grasping Oldcorne by the 
collar of his vestment, and dragging him along; 
" and rest thankful that I make you not, also, 
my prisoner.'" 

" Take me ; but spare him ! — in mercy spare 
him !" shrieked Viviana. 

" You solicit mercy from one who knows it 
not, daughter," observed the priest. " Lead on, 
sir. I am ready to attend you." 

" Your destination is the New Fleet, father,'''' 
retorted the pursuivant, in a tone of bitter 


raillery ; " unless you prefer the ceil in Radcliffe 
Hall lately vacated by your saintly predecessor, 
Father Woodroofe." 

" Help ! help ! " shrieked Viviana. 

" You may spare your voice, fair lady," sneer- 
ed the pursuivant. " No help is at hand. Your 
servants are all prisoners." 

The words were scarcely uttered, when a sliding 
panel in the wall flew open, and Guy Fawkes, 
followed by Humphrey Chetham, and another 
personage, sprang through the aperture, and pre- 
sented a petronel at the head of the pursuivant. 




The pursuivant was taken so completely un- 
awares by the sudden appearance of Guy Fawkes 
and his companions, that he made no attempt at 
resistance. Nor were his attendants less con- 
founded. Before they recovered from their sur- 
prise, Humphrey Chetham seized Viviana in his 
arms, and darting through the panel, called to 
the priest to follow him. Father Oldcorne was 
about to comply, when one of the soldiers, 
grasping the surcingle at his waist, dragged him 
forcibly backwards. The next moment, however, 
he was set free by Guy Fawkes, who felling the 
man to the ground, and, interposing himself 
between the priest and the other soldier, enabled 
the former to make good his retreat. This done, 
he planted himself in front of the panel, and 



with a petronel in each hand, menaced his 

" Fly for your lives ! " he shouted in a loud 
voice to the others. " Not a moment is to be 
lost. I have taken greater odds, and in a worse 
cause, and have not been worsted. Heed me 
not, I say. I will defend the passage till you 
are beyond reach of danger. Fly ! — fly ! " 

"After them!'" vociferated the pursuivant, 
stamping with rage and vexation ; " after them 
instantly ! Hew down that bold traitor. Show 
him no quarter. His life is forfeit to the king. 
Slay him as you would a dog ! " 

But the men, having no fire-arms, were so 
much intimidated by the fierce looks of Guy 
Fawkes, and the deadly weapons he pointed at 
their heads, that they hesitated to obey their 
leader's injunctions. 

" Do you hear what I say to you, cravens ?" 
roared the pursuivant. " Cut him down without 

" They dare not move a footstep, 1 ' rejoined 
Guy Fawkes, in a derisive tone. 

"Recreants!" cried the pursuivant, foaming 


with rage, " is my prey to be snatched from me 
at the very moment I have secured it, through 
your cowardice ? Obey me instantly, or, as 
Heaven shall judge me, I will denounce you to 
my Lord Derby and the Commissioners as aiders 
and abettors in Father Oldcorne's escape ! — and 
you well know what your punishment will be 
if I do so. What ! — are you afraid of one 

" Our pikes are no match for his petronels," 
observed the foremost soldier, sullenly. 

" They are not," rejoined Guy Fawkes ; " and 
you will do well not to compel me to prove the 
truth of your assertion. As to you, Master 
Pursuivant," he continued, with a look so stern 
that the other quailed before it, " unwilling as I 
am to shed bloodj I shall hold your life, if I am 
compelled to take it, but just retribution for the 
fate you have brought upon the unfortunate 
Elizabeth Orton." 

"Ha!" exclaimed the pursuivant, starting. 
" I thought I recognized you. You are the 
soldier in the Spanish garb who saved that false 
prophetess from drowning." 


" I saved her only for a more lingering death, 1,1 
rejoined Guy Fawkes. 

" I know it," retorted the pursuivant. " I 
found her dead body when I visited her cell on 
my way hither, and gave orders to have it in- 
terred without coffin or shroud in that part of the 
burial-ground of the Collegiate Church in Man- 
chester reserved for common felons."" 

" I know not what stays my hand, 11 rejoined 
Guy Fawkes, fiercely. " But I am strongly 
tempted to give you a grave beside her." 

" I will put your daring to the proof ! " cried 
the pursuivant, snatching a pike from one of his 
followers, and brandishing it over his head. 
" Throw down your arms, or you die !" 

" Back !" exclaimed Guy Fawkes, presenting 
a petronel at him, " or I lodge a bullet in your 

" Be advised by me, and rush not on certain 
destruction, good Master Pursuivant," said the 
foremost soldier, plucking his mantle. " I see by 
his bloodthirsty looks that the villian is in earnest." 

<; I hear footsteps," cried the other soldier; 
" our comrades are at hand." 


" Then it is time for me to depart," cried Guy 
Fawkes, springing through the secret door, and 
closing it after him. 

" Confusion ! " exclaimed the pursuivant ; 
" but he shall not escape. Break open the 
panel ." 

The order was promptly obeyed. The men 
battered the stout oak board, which was of great 
thickness, with their pikes, but it resisted every 
effort ; nor was it until the arrival of a fresh band 
of soldiers with lights, mallets, chisels, and other 
implements suitable to the purpose, that it could 
be forced open. This accomplished, the pur- 
suivant, commanding his attendants to follow him, 
dashed through the aperture. As they proceeded 
singly along the narrow passage, the roof became 
so low that they were compelled to adopt a stoop- 
ing posture. In this manner they hurried on 
until their further progress was stopped by a 
massive stone door, which appeared to descend 
from above by some hidden contrivance, no trace 
of bolt or other fastening being discernible. The 
flag fitted closely in channels in the walls, and had 
all the appearance of solid masonry. After 


examining this obstacle for a moment, the pur- 
suivant was convinced that any attempt to move 
it would be impracticable, and muttering a deep 
execration, he gave the word to return. 

" From the course it appears to take," he ob- 
served, " this passage must communicate with the 
garden, — perhaps with the further side of the moat. 
"We may yet secure them, if we use despatch." 

To return to the fugitives. On arriving at the 
point where the stone door was situated, which 
he discovered by the channels in the wall above- 
mentioned, Guy Fawkes searched for an iron 
ring, and, having found it, drew it towards him, 
and the ponderous flag slowly dropped into its 
place. He then groped his way cautiously along 
in the dark, until his foot encountered the top of 
a ladder, down which he crept, and landed on 
the floor of a damp deep vault. Having taken 
the precaution to remove the ladder, he hastened 
onwards for about fifty yards, when he came to 
a steep flight of stone steps, distinguishable by 
a feeble glimmer of light from above, and mount- 
ing them, emerged through an open trap-door 
into a small building situated at the western side 


of the moat, where, to his surprise and disap- 
pointment, he found the other fugitives. 

" How comes it you are here?" he exclaimed 
in a reproachful tone. " I kept the wolves at 
bay thus long, to enable you to make good your 
retreat. 11 

" Miss Radcliffe is too weak to move, 11 replied 
Humphrey Chetham ; " and I could not persuade 
Father Oldcorne to leave her. 11 

" I care not what becomes of me, 11 said the 
priest. " The sooner my painful race is run the 
better. But I cannot — will not abandon my dear 
charge thus. 11 

" Think not of me, father, I implore you, 11 
rejoined Viviana, who had sunk overpowered with 
terror and exhaustion. " I shall be better soon. 
Master Chetham, I am assured, will remain with 
me till our enemies have departed, and I will 
then return to the hall. 11 

" Command me as you please, Miss Rad- 
clifFe, 11 replied Humphrey Chetham. " You 
have but to express a wish to insure its fulfilment 
on my part. 11 

" Oh ! that you had suffered Mr. Catesby to 


tarry with us till the morning, as he himself pro- 
posed, dear daughter," observed the priest, turn- 
ing to Viviana. 

"Has Catesby been here?" inquired Guy 
Fawkes, with a look of astonishment. 

" He has," replied Oldcorne. " He came to 
warn us that the hall would be this night searched 
by the officers of state ; and he also brought word 
that a warrant had been issued by the Privy 
Council for the arrest of Sir William RadclifFe." 

" Where is he now?" demanded Fawkes, 

" On the way to Chester, whither he departed 
in all haste, at Viviana's urgent request, to ap- 
prise her father of his danger," rejoined the 

"This is strange!" muttered Guy Fawkes. 
" Catesby here, and I not know it ! " 

" He had a secret motive for his visit, my 
son," whispered Oldcorne, significantly. 

" So I conclude, father," replied Fawkes, in 
the same tone. 

" Viviana Radcliffe," murmured Humphrey 
Chetham, in low and tender accents, " something 


tells me that this moment will decide my future 
fate. Emboldened by the mysterious manner in 
which we have been brought together, and you, 
as it were, have been thrown upon my protection, 
I venture to declare the passion I have long 
indulged for you ; — a passion which, though 
deep and fervent as ever agitated human bosom, 
has hitherto, from the difference of our rank, and 
yet more from the difference of our religious 
opinions, been without hope. What has just 
occurred, — added to the peril in which your 
worthy father stands, and the difficulties in which 
you yourself will necessarily be involved, — makes 
me cast aside all misgiving, and perhaps with too 
much presumption, but with a confident belief 
that the sincerity of my love renders me not 
wholly undeserving of your regard, earnestly so- 
licit you to give me a husband's right to watch 
over and defend you." 

Viviana was silent. .But even by the imper- 
fect light the young merchant could discern that 
her cheek was covered with blushes. 

" Your answer? 11 he cried, taking her hand. 

" You must take it from my lips, Master 


Chetham, interposed the priest, " Viviana Rad- 
cliffe never can be yours." 

" Be pleased to let her speak for herself, 
reverend sir," rejoined the young merchant, 

" I represent her father, and have acquainted 
you with his determination,'" rejoined the priest. 
61 Appeal to her, and she will confirm my words."" 

"Viviana, is this true?" asked Chetham. 
" Does your father object to your union with 



Viviana answered by a deep sigh, and gently 
withdrew her hand from the young merchant's 

" Then there is no hope for me ? " cried 

" Alas ! no," replied Viviana ; " nor for me — 
of earthly affection. I am already dead to the 

M How so ? " he asked. 

" I am about to vow myself to Heaven," she 

" Viviana ! " exclaimed the young man, throw- 
ing himself at her feet, " reflect ! — oh ! re- 


fleet, before you take this fatal — this irrevocable 

" Rise, sir," interposed the priest, sternly ; 
" you plead in vain. Sir William Radcliffe will 
never wed his daughter to a heretic. In his 
name I command you to desist from further 

" I obey," replied Chetham, rising. 

" We lose time here," observed Guy Fawkes, 
who had been lost for a moment in reflection. 
" I will undertake to provide for your safety, 
father. But, what must be done with Viviana ? 
She cannot be left here. And her return to the 
hall would be attended with danger." 

" I will not return till the miscreants have 
quitted it," said Viviana. 

" Their departure is uncertain," replied Fawkes. 
" When they are baulked of their prey they 
sometimes haunt a dwelling for weeks." 

" What will become of me ? " cried Viviana, 

" It were vain, I fear, to entreat you to accept 
an asylum with my father at Clayton Hall, or at 
my own residence at Crumpsall," said Humphrey 


u Your offer is most kind, sir," replied Old- 
come, " and is duly appreciated. But Viviana 
will see the propriety — on every account — of 
declining it." 

" I do — I do," she acquiesced. 

" Will you entrust yourself to my protection p" 
observed Fawkes. 

" Willingly," replied the priest, answering for 
her. " We shall find some place of refuge," he 
added, turning to Viviana, " where your father 
can join us, and where we can remain concealed 
till this storm has blown over." 

" I know many such," rejoined Fawkes, " both 
in this country, and in Yorkshire, and will guide 
you to one." 

" My horses are at your service," said Hum- 
phrey Chetham. " They are tied beneath the 
trees in the avenue. My servant shall bring 
them to the door," and, turning to his attendant, 
he gave him directions to that effect. " I was 
riding hither an hour before midnight," he con- 
tinued, addressing Viviana, " to offer you assist- 
ance, having accidentally heard the pursuivant 
mention his meditated visit to Ordsall Hall to 


one of his followers, when, as I approached the 
gates, this person," pointing to Guy Fawkes, 
" crossed my path, and, seizing the bridle of my 
steed, demanded whether I was a friend to Sir 
William Radcliffe. I answered in the affirma- 
tive, and desired to know the motive of his in- 
quiry. He then told me that the house was 
invested by a numerous band of armed men, who 
had crossed the moat by means of a plank, and 
were at that moment concealed within the garden. 
This intelligence, besides filling me with alarm, 
disconcerted all my plans, as I hoped to have 
been beforehand with them, — their inquisitorial 
searches being generally made at a late hour, 
when all the inmates of a house intended to be 
surprised are certain to have retired to rest. 
While I was bitterly reproaching myself for my 
dilatoriness, and considering what course it would 
be best to pursue, my servant, Martin Heydocke, 
— son to your father's old steward, — who had 
ridden up at the stranger's approach, informed 
me that he was acquainted with a secret passage 
communicating beneath the moat with the hall. 
Upon this, I dismounted ; and fastening my horse 


to a tree, ordered him to lead me to it without an 
instants delay. The stranger, who gave his name 
as Guy Fawkes, and professed himself a stanch 
Catholic, and a friend of Father Oldcorne, begged 
permission to join us in a tone so earnest that I 
at once acceded to his request. We then pro- 
ceeded to this building, and after some search 
discovered the trap-door. Much time was lost, 
owing to our being unprovided with lights, in the 
subterranean passage ; and it was more than two 
hours before we could find the ring connected 
with the stone door, the mystery of which Martin 
explained to us. This delay we feared would 
render our scheme abortive, when, just as we 
reached the panel, we heard your shrieks. The 
spring was touched, and — you know the rest." 

" And shall never forget it,"" replied Viviana, 
in a tone of the deepest gratitude. 

At this juncture, the tramp of horses was 
heard at the door ; and the next moment it was 
thrown open by the younger Heydocke,, who, 
with a look, and in a voice of the utmost terror, 
exclaimed, " They are coming! — they are 
coming ! " 


" The pursuivant ? " cried Guy Fawkes. 

" Not him alone, but the whole gang," re- 
joined Martin. " Some of them are lowering 
the drawbridge, while others are crossing the 
plank. Several are on horseback, and I think 
I discern the pursuivant amongst the number. 
They have seen me, and are hurrying in this 

As he spoke a loud shout corroborated his 

" We are lost ! " exclaimed Oldcorne. 

" Do not despair, father," rejoined Guy 
Fawkes. " Heaven will not abandon its faithful 
servants. The Lord will deliver us out of the 
hands of these Amalekites." 

" To horse, then, if you would indeed avoid 
them,"" urged Humphrey Chetham. " The 
shouts grow louder. Your enemies are fast 

u Viviana," said Guy Fawkes, " are you wil- 
ling to fly with us ? " 

" I will do anything rather than be left to 
those horrible men," she answered. 

Guy Fawkes then raised her in his arms, and 


sprang with his lovely burthen upon the nearest 
charger. His example was quickly followed by 
Humphrey Chetham, who, vaulting on the other 
horse, assisted the priest to mount behind him. 
While this took place, Martin Heydocke darted 
into the shed, and instantly bolted the door. 

It was a beautiful moonlight night, almost as 
bright as day, and the movements of each party 
were fully revealed to the other, Guy Fawkes 
perceived at a glance that they were surrounded ; 
and, though he had no fears for himself, he was full 
of apprehension for the safety of his companion. 
While he was debating with himself as to the 
course it would be best to pursue, Humphrey 
Chetham shouted to him to turn to the left, and 
started off in that direction. Grasping his fail 
charge, whom he had placed before him on the 
saddle, firmly with his left arm, and wrapping hei 
in his ample cloak, Guy Fawkes drew his sword, 
and striking spurs into his steed, followed in the 
same track. 

The little fabric which had afforded them tem- 
porary shelter, it has already been mentioned, was 
situated on the west of the hall, a* a short dis- 


tance from the moat, and was screened from ob- 
servation by a small shrubbery. No sooner did 
the fugitives emerge from this cover than loud 
outcries were raised by their antagonists, and 
every effort was made to intercept them. On 
the right, galloping towards them on a light but 
swift courser, taken from Sir William RadclinVs 
stables, came the pursuivant, attended by half-a- 
dozen troopers, who had accommodated them- 
selves with horses in the same manner as their 
leader. Between them and the road leading to 
Manchester, were stationed several armed men on 
foot. At the rear, voices proclaimed that others 
were in full pursuit ; while in front, a fourth de- 
tachment menaced them with their pikes. Thus 
beset on all sides, it seemed scarcely possible 
to escape. Nothing daunted, however, by the 
threats and vociferations with which they were 
received, the two horsemen boldly charged this 
party. The encounter w r as instantaneous. Guy 
Fawkes warded off a blow, which, if it had taken 
effect, must have robbed Viviana of life, and 
struck down the fellow who aimed it.- - At the 
same moment, his career was checked by another 

VOL. I. F 


assailant, who, catching his bridle with the hook 
of his pike, commanded him to surrender. Fawkes 
replied by cleaving the man's staff asunder, and, 
having thus disembarrassed himself, was about to 
pursue his course, when he perceived that Hum- 
phrey Chetham was in imminent danger from a 
couple of soldiers who had stopped him, and 
were trying to unhorse his companion. Riding 
up to them, Guy Fawkes, by a vigorous and well- 
directed attack, speedily drove them off; and the ' 
fugitives, being now unimpeded, were enabled to 
continue their career. 

The foregoing occurrences were witnessed by 
the pursuivant with the utmost rage and vexa- 
tion. Pouring forth a torrent of threats and im- 
precations, he swore he would never rest till 
he had secured them, and urging his courser to 
its utmost speed commanded his men to give 

Skirting a sluice, communicating between the 
Irwell and the moat, Humphrey Chetham, who, 
as better acquainted with the country than his 
companions, took the lead, proceeded along its 
edge for about a hundred yards, when he sud- 


denly struck across a narrow bridge covered with 
sod, and entered the open fields. Hitherto Vivi- 
ana had remained silent. Though fully aware of 
the risk she had run, she gave no sign of alarm, 
— not even when the blow was aimed against her 
life ; and it was only on conceiving the danger 
in some degree passed that she ventured to ex- 
press her gratitude. 

" You have displayed so much courage," said 
Guy Fawkes, in answer to her speech, " that it 
would be unpardonable to deceive you. Our 
foes are too near us, and too well mounted, to 
make it by any means certain we shall escape 
them, — unless by stratagem." 

" They are within a hundred yards of us," 
cried Humphrey Chetham, glancing fearfully 
backwards. " They have possessed themselves 
of your father's fleetest horses ; and, if I mis- 
take not, the rascally pursuivant has secured your 
favourite barb." 

" My gentle Zayda !" exclaimed Viviana. 

" Then indeed we are lost. She has not her 

match for speed " 

" If she bring her rider to us alone, she will 



do us good service," observed Guy Fawkes, sig- 

The same notion, almost at the same moment, 
occurred to the pursuivant. Having witnessed 
the prowess displayed by Guy Fawkes in his 
recent attack on the soldiers, he felt no dispo- 
sition to encounter so formidable an opponent 
single-handed ; and finding that the high-mettled 
barb on which he was mounted, by its superior 
speed and fiery temper, would inevitably place 
him in such a dilemma, he prudently resolved to 
halt, and exchange it for a more manageable 

This delay was of great service to the fugi- 
tives, and enabled them to get considerably ahead. 
They had now gained a narrow lane, and, tracking 
it, speedily reached the rocky banks of the Irwell. 
Galloping along a foot-path that followed the 
serpentine course of the stream for a quarter of a 
mile, they arrived at a spot marked by a bed of 
osiers, where Humphrey Chetham informed them 
there was a ford. 

Accordingly, they plunged into the river, and 
while stemming the current, which here ran with 


great swiftness, and rose up above the saddles, 
the neighing of a steed was heard from the bank 
they had quitted. Turning at the sound, Vivi- 
ana beheld her favourite courser on the sum- 
mit of a high rock. The soldier to whom Zayda 
was intrusted had speedily, as the pursuivant 
foresaw, distanced his companions, and chose this 
elevated position to take sure aim at Guy Fawkes, 
against whom he was now levelling a caliver. 
The next moment a bullet struck against his 
brigand ine, but without doing him any injury. 
The soldier, however, did not escape so lightly. 
Startled by the discharge, the fiery barb leaped 
from the precipice into the river, and throwing 
her rider, who was borne off by the rapid stream, 
swam towards the opposite bank, which she reach- 
ed just as the others were landing. At the 
sound of her mistress's voice she stood still, and 
allowed Humphrey Chetham to lay hold of her 
bridle ; and Viviana declaring she was able to 
mount her, Guy Fawkes, who felt that such an 
arrangement was most likely to conduce to her 
safety, and who was, moreover, inclined to view 
the occurrence as a providential interference in 


their behalf, immediately assisted her into the 

Before this transfer could be effected, the pur- 
suivant and his attendants had begun to ford the 
stream. The former had witnessed the accident 
that had befallen the soldier from a short dis- 
tance ; and, while he affected to deplore it, inter- 
nally congratulated himself on his prudence and 
foresight. But he was by no means so well 
satisfied when he saw how it served to benefit 
the fugitives. 

" That unlucky beast !" he exclaimed. " Some 
fiend must have prompted me to bring her out 
of the stable. Would she had drowned herself 
instead of poor Dickon Duckesbury, whom she 
hath sent to feed the fishes ! With her aid, 
Miss RadclifTe will doubtless escape. No matter. 
If I secure Father Oldcorne, and that black- 
visaged trooper in the Spanish garb, who, I '11 be 
sworn, is a secret intelligencer of the pope, if not 
of the devil, I shall be well contented. I "11 
hang them both on a gibbet higher than Ha- 

And muttering other threats to the same effect, 


he picked his way to the opposite shore. Long 
before he reached it,- the fugitives had disappear- 
ed ; but on climbing the bank, he beheld them 
galloping swiftly across a well-wooded district 
steeped in moonlight, and spread out before his 
view, and inflamed by the sight he shouted to 
his attendants, and once more started in pur- 

Cheered by the fortunate incident above re- 
lated, which, in presenting her with her own 
steed in a manner so surprising and unexpected, 
seemed almost to give her assurance of deliver- 
ance, Viviana, inspirited by the exercise, felt her 
strength and spirits rapidly revive. At her side 
rode Guy Fawkes, who ever and anon cast an 
anxious look behind, to ascertain the distance of 
their pursuers, but suffered no exclamation to 
escape his lips. Indeed, throughout the whole 
affair, he maintained the reserve belonging to his 
sombre and taciturn character, and neither ques- 
tioned Humphrey Chetham as to where he was 
leading them, nor proposed any deviation from 
the route he had apparently chosen. To such 
remarks as were addressed to him, Fawkes an- 


swered in monosyllables ; and it was only when 
occasion required, that he volunteered any ob- 
servation or advice. He seemed to surrender 
himself to chance. And perhaps, if his bosom 
could have been examined, it would have been 
found that he considered himself a mere puppet 
in the hands of destiny. 

In other and calmer seasons, he might have 
dwelt with rapture on the beautiful and varied 
country through which they were speeding, and 
which from every knoll they mounted, every slope 
they descended, every glade they threaded, in- 
tricacy pierced, or tangled dell tracked, presented 
new and increasing attractions. This charming 
district, since formed into a park by the Traf- 
fords, from whom it derives its present designa- 
tion, was at this time, — though part of the do- 
main of that ancient family, — wholly unenclosed. 
Old Trafford Hall lies (for it is still in existence,) 
more than a mile nearer to Manchester, a little 
to the east of Ordsall Hall ; but the modern 
residence of the family is situated in the midst of 
the lovely region through which the fugitives 
were riding. 


But, though the charms of the scene, heighten- 
ed by the gentle medium through which they 
were viewed, produced little effect upon the iron 
nature of Guy Fawkes, they were not with- 
out influence on his companions, especially Vivi- 
ana. Soothed by the stillness of all around her, 
she almost forgot her danger ; and surrendering 
herself to the dreamy enjoyment generally expe- 
rienced in contemplating such a scene at such an 
hour, suffered her gaze to wander over the fair 
woody landscape before her, till it was lost in the 
distant moonlit wolds. 

From the train of thought naturally awakened 
by this spectacle, she was roused by the shouts 
of the pursuers ; and, glancing timorously behind 
her, beheld them hurrying swiftly along the valley 
they had just quitted. From the rapidity with 
which they were advancing, it was evident they 
were gaining upon them, and she was about to 
urge her courser to greater speed, when Hum- 
phrey Chetham laid his hand upon the rein to 
check .her. 

" Reserve yourself till we gain the brow of this 
hill," he remarked ; " and then put Zayda to 

f 5 


her mettle. We are not far from our destina- 

" Indeed !" exclaimed Viviana. " Where is 

" 1 will show it to you presently," he answered. 

Arrived at the summit of the high ground, 
which they had been for some time gradually as- 
cending, the young merchant pointed out a vast 
boggy tract, about two miles off, in the vale be- 
neath them. 

61 That is our destination," he said. 

" Did I not hold it impossible you could trifle 
with me at such a time as this, I should say you 
were jesting," rejoined Viviana. " The place 
you indicate, unless I mistake you, is Chat Moss, 
the largest and most dangerous marsh in Lan- 
cashire. " 

44 You do not mistake me, neither am I jest- 
ing, Viviana," replied the young merchant, grave- 
ly. " Chat Moss is the mark at which I aim." 

" If we are to cross it, we shall need a Will-o'- 
the-wisp to guide us, and some friendly elf to 
make firm the ground beneath our steeds," re- 
joined Viviana, in a slightly-sarcastic tone. 


" Trust to me and you shall traverse it in 
safety," resumed Humphrey Chetham. 

" I would sooner trust myself to the pursui- 
vant and his band, than venture upon its treacher- 
ous surface," she replied. 

" How is this, young sir ?" interposed Guy 
Fawkes, sternly. " Is it from heedlessness or 
rashness that you are about to expose us to this 
new danger ? — which, if Viviana judges correctly, 
and my own experience of such places inclines me 
to think she does so, — is greater than that which 
now besets us." 

" If there is any danger I shall, be the first to 
encounter it, for I propose to act as your guide," 
returned Humphrey Chetham, in an offended 
tone. " But the treacherous character of the 
marsh constitutes our safety. I am acquainted 
with a narrow path across it, from which the devi- 
ation of a foot will bring certain death. If our 
pursuers attempt to follow us their destruction 
is inevitable. Viviana may rest assured I would 
not needlessly expose so dear a life as hers. But 
it is our best chance of safety." 

" Humphrey Chetham is in the right," ob- 


served the priest. " I have heard of the path he 
describes ; and if he can guide us along it, we 
shall effectually baffle our enemies." 

' ; I cry you mercy, sir," said Viviana. " I did 
not apprehend your meaning. But I now thank- 
fully resign myself to your care." 

" Forward, then," cried the young merchant. 
And they dashed swiftly down the declivity. 

Chat Moss, towards which they were hastening, 
though now drained, in part cultivated, and tra- 
versed by the busiest and most-frequented rail- 
road in England, or the world, was, within the 
recollection of many of the youngest of the pre- 
sent generation, a dreary and almost impassable 
waste. Surveyed from the heights of Dunham, 
whence the writer has often gazed upon it, envy- 
ing the plover her wing to skim over its broad 
expanse, it presented with its black boggy soil, 
striped like a motley garment, with patches of 
grey, tawny, and dunnish red, a singular and 
mysterious appearance. Conjecture fixes this mo- 
rass as the site of a vast forest, whose immemo- 
rial and Druid-haunted groves were burnt by the 
Roman invaders ; and seeks to account for its 


present condition by supposing that the charred 
trees — still frequently found within its depths 
— being left where the conflagration had placed 
them, had choked up its brooks and springs, 
and so reduced it to a general swamp. Dray- 
ton, however, in the following lines from the 
Faerie Land, places its origin as far back as 
the Deluge : — 

Great Chat Moss at my fall 

Lies full of turf and marl, her unctuous mineral ; 

And blocks as black as pitch, with boring augers found, 

There at the General Flood supposed to be drown'd. 

But the former hypothesis appears the more pro- 
bable. A curious description of Chat Moss, as 
it appeared at the time of this history, is fur- 
nished by Camden, who terms it, " a swampy tract 
of great extent, a considerable part of which was 
carried off in the last age by swollen rivers with 
great danger, whereby the rivers were infected, 
and great quantities of fish died. Instead thereof 
is now a valley watered by a small stream ; and 
many trees were discovered thrown down, and 
lying flat, so that one may suppose when the 
ground lay neglected, and the waste water of 


brooks was not drained off into the open valleys, 
or their courses stopped by neglect or desolation, 
all the lower grounds were turned into swamps, 
(which we call mosses,) or into pools. If this 
was the case, no wonder so many trees are found 
covered, and, as it were, buried in such places 
all over England, but especially here. For the 
roots being loosened by too excessive wet, they 
must necessarily fall down and sink in so soft 
a soil. The people hereabouts search for them 
with poles and spits, and after marking the place, 
dig them up and use them for firing, for they are 
like torches, equally fit to burn and to give light, 
which is probably owing to the bituminous earth 
that surrounds them, whence the common people 
suppose them firs, though Caesar denies that there 
were such trees in Britain.'" 

But, though vast masses of the bog had been 
carried off by the Irwell and the Mersey, as 
related by Camden, the general appearance of the 
waste, — with the exception of the valley and the 
small stream, — was much the same as it con- 
tinued to our own time. Its surface was more 


broken and irregular, and black gaping chasms 
and pits filled with water and slime as dark- 
coloured as the turf whence it flowed, pointed out 
the spots where the swollen and heaving swamp 
had burst its bondage. Narrow paths, known 
only to the poor turf-cutters and other labourers 
who dwelt upon its borders, and gathered fuel 
with poles and spits in the manner above de- 
scribed, intersected it at various points. But 
as they led in many cases to dangerous and deep 
gulfs, to dismal quagmires and fathomless pits ; 
and, moreover, as the slightest departure from 
the proper track would have whelmed the tra- 
veller in an oozy bed, from which, as from a 
quicksand, he would have vainly striven to ex- 
tricate himself, — it was never crossed without 
a guide, except by those familiar with its perilous 
courses. One painful circumstance connected with 
the history of Chat Moss remains to be recorded, 
namely, that the attempt made to cultivate it by 
the great historian Roscoe, — an attempt since 
carried out, as has already been shown, with 
complete success, — ended in a result ruinous to 


the fortunes of that highly-gifted person, who, 
up to the period of this luckless undertaking, 
was as prosperous as he was meritorious. 

By this time the fugitives had approached 
the confines of the marsh. An accident, how- 
ever, had just occurred, which nearly proved 
fatal to Viviana, and, owing to the delay it 
occasioned, brought their pursuers into danger- 
ous proximity with them. In fording the Irwell, 
which, from its devious course, they were again 
compelled to cross, about a quarter of a mile 
below Barton, her horse missed its footing, and 
precipitated her into the rapid current. In an- 
other instant, she would have been borne away, 
if Guy Fawkes had not flung himself into the 
water, and seized her before she sank. Her 
affrighted steed, having got out of its depth, 
began to swim off, and it required the utmost 
exertion on the part of Humphrey Chetham, 
embarrassed as he was by the priest, to secure it. 
In a few minutes all was set to rights, and Vivi- 
ana was once more placed on the saddle, without 
having: sustained further inconvenience than was 


occasioned by her dripping apparel. But those 
few minutes, as has been just stated, sufficed 
to bring the pursuivant and his men close upon 
them ; and as they scrambled up the opposite 
bank, the plunging and shouting behind them 
told that the latter had entered the stream. 

" Yonder is Baysnape," exclaimed Humphrey 
Chetham, calling Viviana's attention to a ridge 
of high ground on the borders of the waste. 
" Below it lies the path by which I propose to 
enter the moss. We shall speedily be out of 
the reach of our enemies. 1 ' 

" The marsh at least will hide us," answered 
Viviana, with a shudder. " It is a terrible al- 

" Fear nothing, dear daughter," observed the 
priest. " The saints, who have thus marvellously 
protected us, will continue to watch over us to 
the end, and will make the path over yon 
perilous waste as safe as the ground on which 
•we tread." 

" I like not the appearance of the sky," ob- 
served Guy Fawkes, looking uneasily upwards. 


" Before we reach the spot you have pointed 
out, the moon will be obscured. Will it be 
safe to traverse the moss in the dark ?" 

"It is our only chance," replied the young 
merchant, speaking in a low tone, that his answer 
might not reach Viviana's ears ; " and after all, 
the darkness may be serviceable. Our pursuers 
are so near, that if it were less gloomy, they 
might hit upon the right track. It will be a 
risk to us to proceed, but certain destruction to 
those who follow. And now let us make what 
haste we can. Every moment is precious. ,, 

The dreary and fast darkening waste had now 
opened upon them in ail its horrors. Far as 
the gaze could reach appeared an immense ex- 
panse, flat almost as the surface of the ocean, 
and unmarked, so far as could be discerned in 
that doubtful light, by any trace of human foot- 
step or habitation. It was a stern and sombre 
prospect, and calculated to inspire terror in the 
stoutest bosom. What effect it produced on 
Viviana may be easily conjectured. But her 
nature was brave and enduring, and, though she 
trembled so violently as scarcely to be able to 


keep lier seat, she gave no utterance to her fears. 
They were now skirting that part of the morass, 
since denominated, from the unfortunate specu- 
lation previously alluded to, " Roscoe's Improve- 
ments." This tract was the worst and most dan- 
gerous portion of the whole moss. Soft, slabby, 
and unsubstantial, its treacherous beds scarcely 
offered secure footing to the heron that alighted 
on them. The ground shook beneath the fugi- 
tives as they hurried past the edge of the groan- 
ing and quivering marsh. The plover, scared 
from its nest, uttered its peculiar and plaintive 
cry ; the bittern shrieked ; other night-fowl 
poured forth their doleful notes ; and the bull- 
frog added its deep croak to the ominous concert. 
Behind them came the thundering tramp and 
loud shouts of their pursuers. Guy Fawkes 
had judged correctly. Before they reached Bay- 
snape the moon had withdrawn behind a rack of 
clouds, and it had become profoundly dark. Ar- 
rived at this point, Humphrey Chetham called 
to them to turn off to the right. 

" Follow singly,' 1 he said, w; and do not swerve 
a hair's breadth from the path. The slightest 


deviation will be fatal. Do you, sir," he added 
to the priest, " mount behind Guy Fawkes, and 
let Viviana come next after me. If I should 
miss my way, do not stir for your life." 

The transfer effected, the fugitives turned off 
to the right, and proceeded at a cautious pace 
along a narrow and shaking path. The ground 
trembled so much beneath them, and their horses' 
feet sank so deeply in the plashy bog, that Vivi- 
ana demanded, in a tone of some uneasiness, if 
he was sure he had taken the right course ? 

" If T had not," replied Humphrey Chetham, 
" we should ere this have found our way to the 
bottom of the morass.' 1 

As he spoke, a floundering plunge, accom- 
panied by a horrible and quickly-stifled cry, told 
that one of their pursuers had perished in endea- 
vouring to follow them. 

" The poor wretch is gone to his account," 
observed Viviana, in a tone of commiseration. 
"Have a care! — have a care, lest you share 
the same fate." 

M If I can save you, I care not what becomes 
of me," replied the young merchant. " Since 


I can never hope to possess you, life has become 
valueless in my eyes. 1 '* 

" Quicken your pace," shouted Guy Fawkes, 
who brought up the rear. " Our pursuers have 
discovered the track, and are making towards us." 

" Let them do so," replied the young mer- 
chant. " They can do us no farther injury." 

" That is false !" cried the voice of a soldier 
from behind. And as the words were uttered 
a shot was fired, which, though aimed against 
Chetham, took effect upon his steed. The ani- 
mal staggered, and his rider had onlv time to 
slide from his back when he reeled off the path, 
and was ingulfed in the marsh. 

Hearing the plunge of the steed, the man 
fancied he had hit his mark, and hallooed in 
an exulting voice to his companions. But his 
triumph was of short duration. A ball from the 
petronel of Guy Fawkes pierced his brain, and 
dropping from his saddle, he sank, together with 
his horse, which he dragged along with him into 
the quagmire. 

44 Waste no more shot," cried Humphrey 
Chetham ; " the swamp will fight our battles 


for us. Though I grieve for the loss of my 
horse, I may be better able to guide you on 

With this, he seized Viviana's bridle, and 
drew her steed along at a quick pace, but with 
the greatest caution. As they proceeded, a light 
like that of a lantern was seen to rise from the 
earth, and approach them. 

" Heaven be praised !" exclaimed Viviana : 
" some one has heard us, and is hastening to 
our assistance.'" 

" Not so," replied Humphrey Chetham. 
" The light you behold is an ignis fatuus. 
Were you to trust yourself to its delusive 
gleam, it would lead you to the most dangerous 
parts of the moss." 

And, as if to exhibit its real character, the 
little flame, which hitherto had burnt as brightly 
and steadily as a wax-candle, suddenly appeared 
to dilate, and assuming a purple tinge emitted a 
shower of sparks, and then flitted rapidly over 
the plain. 

" Woe to him that follows it ! " cried Hum- 
phrey Chetham. 


" It has a strange unearthly look, 11 observed 
Viviana, crossing herself. " I have much diffi- 
culty in persuading myself it is not the work 
of some malignant sprite. 11 

"It is only an exhalation of the marsh, 11 re- 
plied Chetham. " But, see ! others are at hand. 11 

Their approach, indeed, seemed to have dis- 
turbed all the weird children of the waste. 
Lights were seen trooping towards them in every 
direction ; sometimes stopping, sometimes rising 
in the air, now 'contracting, now expanding, and 
when within a few yards of the travellers, re- 
treating with inconceivable swiftness. 

•■' It is a marvellous and incomprehensible spec- 
tacle, " remarked Viviana. 

16 The common folk hereabouts affirm that 
these Jack-o'-lanterns, as they term them, always 
appear in greater numbers when some direful 
catastrophe is about to take place, 11 rejoined the 
young merchant. 

" Heaven avert it from us, 11 ejaculated Viviana. 

" It is an idle superstition," returned Chet- 
ham. " But we must now keep silence, 11 he 
continued, lowering his voice, and stopping near 


the charred stump of a tree, left, it would seem, 
as a mark. " The road turns here ; and, unless 
our pursuers know it, we shall now quit them for 
ever. We must not let a sound betray the course 
we are about to take." 

Having turned this dangerous corner in safety, 
and conducted his companions as noiselessly as 
possible for a few yards along the cross path, 
which being much narrower was consequently 
more perilous than the first, Humphrey Chet- 
ham stood still, and, imposing silence upon the 
others, listened to the approach of their pursuers. 
His prediction was speedily and terribly verified. 
Hearing the movement in advance, but unable 
to discover the course taken by the fugitives, 
the unfortunate soldiers, fearful of losing their 
prey, quickened their pace, in the expectation 
of 'instantly overtaking them. They were fatally 
undeceived. Four only of their number, besides 
their leader, remained, — two having perished in 
the manner heretofore described. The first of 
these, disregarding the caution of his comrade, 
laughingly urged his horse into a gallop, and, 
on passing the mark, sunk as if by magic, and 


before he could utter a single warning cry, into 
the depths of the morass. His disappearance 
was so instantaneous, that the next in order, 
though he heard the sullen plunge, was unable 
to draw in the rein, and was likewise ingulfed. 
A third followed ; and a fourth, in his efforts 
to avoid their fate, backed his steed over the 
slippery edge of the path. Only one now re- 
mained. It was the pursuivant, who, with the 
prudence that characterised all his proceedings, 
had followed in the rear. He was so dread- 
fully frightened, that, adding his shrieks to those 
of his attendants, he shouted to the fugitives, 
imploring assistance in the most piteous terms, 
and promising never again to molest them, if 
they would guide him to a place of safety. But 
his cries were wholly unheeded ; and he perhaps 
endured in those few minutes of agony as much 
suffering as he had inflicted on the numerous 
victims of his barbarity. It was indeed an ap- 
palling moment. Three of the wretched men 
had not yet sunk, but were floundering about 
in the swamp, and shrieking for help. The 
horses, as much terrified as their riders, added 

VOL. I. G 


their piercing cries to the half-suffocated yells. 
And, as if to make the scene more ghastly, my- 
riads of dancing lights flitted towards them, and 
throwing an unearthly glimmer over this part 
of the morass, fully revealed their struggling 
figures. Moved by compassion for the poor 
wretches, Viviana implored Humphrey Chetham 
to assist them, and, finding him immovable, 
she appealed to Guy Fawkes. 

" They are beyond all human aid," the latter 

" Heaven have mercy on their souls ! " ejacu- 
lated the priest. " Pray for them, dear daugh- 
ter. Pray heartily, as I am about to do." And 
he recited in an audible voice the Romish for- 
mula of supplication for those in extremis. 

Averting her gaze from the spectacle, Viviana 
joined fervently in the prayer. 

By this time two of the strugglers had dis- 
appeared. The third, having freed himself from 
his horse, contrived for some moments, during 
which he uttered the most frightful cries, to 
keep his head above the swamp. His efforts 
were tremendous, but unavailing, and served 


only to accelerate his fate. Making a last des- 
perate plunge towards the bank where the fugi- 
tives were standing, he sank above the chin. 
The expression of his face, shown by the ghastly 
glimmer of the fen-fires, as he was gradually 
swallowed up, was horrible. 

M Requiem teternam dona m, Domine" ex- 
claimed the priest. 

" All is over, 1 ' cried Humphrey Chetham, 
taking the bridle of Viviana's steed, and leading 
her onwards. " We are free from our pur- 

" There is one left,'' 1 she rejoined, casting a 
look backwards. 

"It is the pursuivant," returned Guy Fawkes, 
sternly. " He is within shot," he added, draw- 
ing his petronel. 

"Oh, no — no! — in pity spare him!" cried 
Viviana. " Too many lives have been sacrificed 

" He is the cause of all the mischief," answered 

Guy Fawkes, unwillingly replacing the petronel 

in his belt, " and may live to injure you and 

your father." 

g 2 


" I will hope not," rejoined Viviana ; " but, 
spare him ! — oh, spare him ! " 

"Be it as you please," replied Guy Fawkes. 
44 The marsh, I trust, will not be so mer- 

With this, they slowly resumed their pro- 
gress. On hearing their departure, the pursui- 
vant renewed his cries in a more piteous tone 
than ever ; but, in spite of the entreaties of 
Viviana, nothing could induce her companions 
to lend him assistance. 

For some time they proceeded in silence, and 
without accident. As they advanced, the diffi- 
culties of the path increased, and it was fortu- 
nate that the moon, emerging from the clouds 
in which, up to this moment, she had been 
shrouded, enabled them to steer their course 
in safety. At length, after a tedious and toil- 
some march for nearly half a mile, the footing 
became more secure, the road widened, and they 
were able to quicken their pace. Another half 
mile landed them upon the western bank of the 
morass. Viviana^s first impulse was to give 
thanks to Heaven for their deliverance, nor did 


she omit in her prayer a supplication for the 
unfortunate beings who had perished. 

Arrived at the point now known as Rawson 
Nook, they entered a lane, and proceeded to- 
wards Astley Green, where perceiving a cluster 
of thatched cottages among the trees, they knock- 
ed at the door of the first, and speedily obtained 
admittance from its inmates, a turf-cutter and his 
wife. The man conveyed their steeds to a neigh- 
bouring barn, while the good dame offered Vi- 
viana such accommodation and refreshment as 
her humble dwelling afforded. Here they tarried 
till the following evening, as much to recruit 
Miss RadclinVs strength, as for security. 

At the young merchant's request, the turf-cutter 
went in the course of the day to see what had 
become of the pursuivant. He was nowhere to 
be found. But he accidentally learned from 
another hind, who followed the same occupation 
as himself, that a person answering to the officer's 
description had been seen to emerge from the 
moss near Baysnape at daybreak, and take the 
road towards Manchester. Of the unfortunate 
soldiers nothing but a steel cap and a pike, which 


the man brought away with him, could be dis- 

After much debate, it was decided that their 
safest plan would be to proceed to Manchester, 
where Humphrey Chetham undertook to procure 
them safe lodgings at the Seven Stars, — an 
excellent hostel, kept by a worthy widow, who, he 
affirmed, would do anything to serve him. Ac- 
cordingly, they set out at night-fall, — Viviana 
taking her place before Guy Fawkes, and relin- 
quishing Zayda to the young merchant and the 
priest. Shaping their course through Worsley, 
by Monton Green and Pendleton, they arrived in 
about an hour within sight of the town, which 
then, — not a tithe of its present size, and unpol- 
luted by the smoky atmosphere in which it is 
now constantly enveloped, — was not without some 
pretensions to a picturesque appearance. Cross- 
ing Salford Bridge, they mounted Smithy Bank, 
as it was then termed, and proceeding along 
Cateaton Street and Hanging Ditch, struck into 
Whithing (now Withy) Grove, at the right of 
which, just where a few houses were beginning to 
straggle up Shude Hill, stood, and still stands. 


the comfortable hostel of the Seven Stars. Here 
they stopped, and were warmly welcomed by its 
buxom mistress, Dame Sutcliffe. Muffled in Guy 
Fawkes's cloak, the priest gained the chamber to 
which he was ushered unobserved. And Dame 
Sutcliffe, though her Protestant notions were a 
little scandalized at her dwelling being made the 
sanctuary of a Popish priest, promised, at the in- 
stance of Master Chetham, whom she knew to 
be no favourer of idolatry in a general way, to 
be answerable for his safety. 




Having seen every attention shown to Viviana 
by the hostess, — who, as soon as she discovered 
that she had the daughter of Sir William Rad- 
cliffe of Ordsall, under her roof, bestirred herself 
in right earnest for her accommodation, — Hum- 
phrey Chetham, notwithstanding the lateness of 
the hour, — it was past midnight, — expressed his 
determination to walk to his residence at Crump- 
sail, to put an end to any apprehension which 
might be entertained by the household at his 
prolonged absence. 

With this view, he set forth ; and Guy 
Fawkes, who seemed to be meditating some pro- 
ject which he was unwilling to disclose to the 
others, quitted the hostel with him, bidding the 


chamberlain sit up for him, as he should speedily 
return. They had not gone far when he inquired 
the nearest way to the Collegiate Church, and 
was answered that they were then proceeding to- 
wards it, and in a few moments should arrive at 
its walls. He next asked the young merchant 
whether he could inform him which part of the 
churchyard was allotted to criminals. Humphrey 
Chetham, somewhat surprised by the question, 
replied, " At the north-west, near the charnel ;* 
adding, " I shall pass within a short distance of 
the spot, and will point it out to you." 

Entering Fennel Street, at the end of which 
stood an ancient cross, they soon came in sight 
of the church. The moon was shining brightly, 
and -silvered the massive square tower of the fane, 
the battlements, pinnacles, buttresses, and noble 
eastern window, with its gorgeous tracery. Whili 
Guy Fawkes paused for a moment to contemplate 
this reverend and beautiful structure, two vener- 
able personages, having long snowy beards, and 
wrapped in flowing mantles edged with sable fur, 
passed the end of the street. One of them car- 
ried a lantern, though it was wholly needless, as 

G 5 


it was bright as day ; and as they glided stealthily 
along, there was something so mysterious in their 
manner, that it greatly excited the curiosity of 
Guy Fawkes, who inquired from his companion 
if he knew who they were. 

" The foremost is the warden of Manchester, 
the famous Doctor Dee," replied Humphrey Chet- 
ham, "divine, mathematician, astrologer, — and, 
if report speaks truly, conjuror." 

" Is that Doctor Dee ?" cried Guy Fawkes, in 

" It is," replied the young merchant ; " and 
the other in the Polish cap is the no-less cele- 
brated Edward Kelley, the doctor's assistant, or, 
as he is ordinarily termed, his seer." 

" They have entered the churchyard," remarked 
Guy Fawkes. " I will follow them." 

" I would not advise you to do so," rejoined 
the other. " Strange tales are told of them. 
You may witness that it is not safe to look 

The caution, however, was unheeded. Guy 
Fawkes had already disappeared, and the young 

Uyru S-ruiiTsW^ 


merchant, shrugging his shoulders, proceeded on 
his way towards Hunt's Bank. 

On gaining the churchyard, Guy Fawkes per- 
ceived the warden and his companion creeping 
stealthily beneath the shadow of a wall in the 
direction of a low fabric, which appeared to be 
a bone-house, or charnel, situated at the north- 
western extremity of the church. Before this 
building grew a black and stunted yew-tree. 
Arrived at it, they paused, and looked round to 
see whether they were observed. They did no 
however, notice Guy Fawkes, who had concealec. 
himself behind a buttress. Kelley then unlocked 
the door of the charnel, and brought out a pickaxe 
and mattock. Having divested himself of his 
cloak, he proceeded to shovel out the mould from 
a new-made grave at a little distance from the 
building. Doctor Dee stood by, and held the 
lantern for his assistant. 

Determined to watch their proceedings, Guy 
Fawkes crept towards the yew-tree, behind which 
he ensconced himself. Kelley, meanwhile, con- 
tinued to ply his spade with a vigour that seemed 


almost incomprehensible in one so far stricken in 
years, and of such infirm appearance. At length 
he paused, and kneeling within the shallow grave, 
endeavoured to drag something from it. Doctor 
Dee knelt to assist him. After some exertion, 
they drew forth the corpse of a female, which 
had been interred without coffin, and apparently 
in the habiliments worn during life. A horrible 
suspicion crossed Guy Fawkes. Resolving to 
satisfy his doubts at once, he rushed forward, and 
beheld in the ghastly lineaments of the dead the 
features of the unfortunate prophetess, Elizabeth 




" How now, ye impious violators of the tomb ! 
ye worse than famine-stricken wolves, that rake 
up the dead in churchyards ! " cried Guy Fawkes, 
in a voice of thunder, to Doctor Dee and his 
companion ; who, startled by his sudden appear- 
ance, dropped the body, and retreated to a short 
distance. " What devilish rites are ye about 
to enact, that ye thus profane the sanctity of the 
grave ? " 

" And who art thou that darest thus to inter- 
rupt us ?" demanded Dee, sternly. 

" It matters not," rejoined Fawkes, striding 
towards them. u Suffice it you are both known 
to me. You, John Dee, warden of Manchester, 
who deserve to be burnt at the stake for your 


damnable practices, rather than hold the sacred 
office you fill ; and you, Edward Kelley, his 
associate, who boast of familiar intercourse with 
demons, and, unless fame belies you, have pur- 
chased the intimacy at the price of your soul's 
salvation. I know you both. I know, also, 
whose body you have disinterred, — it is that of 
the ill-fated prophetess, Elizabeth Orton. And, 
if you do not instantly restore it to the grave 
whence you have snatched it, I will denounce you 
to the authorities of the town. 1 " 

" Knowing thus much, you should know still 
more," retorted Doctor Dee, " namely, that I am 
not to be lightly provoked. You have no power 
to quit the churchyard — nay, not so much as to 
move a limb without my permission." 

As he spoke, he drew from beneath his cloak 
a small phial, the contents of which he sprinkled 
over the intruder. Its effect was wonderful and 
instantaneous. The limbs of Guy Eawkes stiffen- 
ed where he stood. His hand remained immov- 
ably fixed upon the pommel of his sword, and he 
seemed transformed into a marble statue. 

" Ycu will henceforth acknowledge and respect 


my power," lie continued. " Were it my pleasure, 
I could bury you twenty fathoms deep in the 
earth beneath our feet ; or, by invoking certain 
spirits, convey you to the summit of yon lofty 
tower," pointing to the church, " and hurl you 
from it headlong. But I content myself with 
depriving you of motion, and leave you in pos- 
session of sight and speech, that you may endure 
the torture of witnessing what you cannot pre- 

So saying, he was about to return to the corpse 
with Kelley, when Guy Fawkes exclaimed in a 
hollow voice, 

" Set me free, and I will instantly depart." 

" Will you swear never to divulge what you 
have seen ? " demanded Dee, pausing. 

" Solemnly," he replied. 

" I will trust you, then," rejoined the Doctor ; 
— " the rather that your presence interferes with 
my purpose." 

Taking a handful of loose earth from an ad- 
joining grave, and muttering a few words, that 
sounded like a charm, he scattered it over Fawkes. 
The spell was instantly broken. A leaden weight 


seemed to be removed from his limbs. His 
joints regained their suppleness, and with a con- 
vulsive start, like that by which a dreamer casts 
off a nightmare, he was liberated from his pre- 
ternatural thraldom. 

" And now, begone ! " cried Doctor Dee, au- 

" Suffer me to tarry with you a few moments,"" 
said Guy Fawkes, in a deferential tone. " Here- 
tofore, I will freely admit, I regarded you as an 
impostor ; but now I am convinced you are deeply 
skilled in the occult sciences, and would fain 
consult you on the future." 

" I have already said that your presence troubles 
me," replied Doctor Dee. " But if you will call 
upon me at the College to-morrow, it may be 
I will give you further proofs of my skill." 

" Why not now, reverend sir ?" urged Fawkes. 
" The question I would ask is better suited to 
this dismal spot and witching hour, than to day- 
light and the walls of your study." 

" Indeed ! " exclaimed Dee. " Your name ? " 

" Guy Fawkes," replied the other. 

" Guy Fawkes !" echoed the Doctor, starting. 


" Nay, then, I guess the nature of the question 
you would ask. 11 

"Am I then known to you, reverend sir? 11 
inquired Fawkes, uneasily. 

" As well as to yourself — nay, better, 11 answered 
the Doctor. " Bring the lantern hither, Kelley, 11 
he continued, addressing his companion. " Look I 11 
he added, elevating the light so as to throw it 
upon the countenance of Fawkes : " it is the 
very face, — the bronzed and strongly-marked 
features, — the fierce black eye, — the iron frame, 
and foreign garb of the figure we beheld in the 
show-stone. 11 

" It is, 11 replied Kelley. " I could have singled 
him out amid a thousand. He looked thus as 
we tracked his perilous course, with his three 
companions, the priest, Chetham, and Viviana 
Radcliffe, across Chat Moss. 11 

" How have you learned this ? 11 cried Guy 
Fawkes, in amazement. 

" By the art that reveals all things, 11 answered 

u In proof that your thoughts are known to 
me, 11 observed Dee, " I will tell you the inquiry 


you would make before it is uttered. You would 
learn whether the enterprise on which you are 
engaged will succeed." 

" I would," replied Fawkes. 

" Yet more," continued Dee. M I am aware 
of the nature of the plot, and could name to 
you all connected with it." 

" Your power is, indeed, wonderful," rejoined 
Fawkes in an altered tone. " But will you give 
me the information I require ?" 

" Hum ! " muttered Dee. 

"I am too poor to purchase it," proceeded 
Fawkes, " unless a relic I have brought from 
Spain has any value in your eyes." 

" Tush ! " exclaimed Dee, angrily. " Do you 
suppose I am a common juggler, and practise 
my art for gain ?" 

" By no means, reverend sir," said Fawkes. 
4< But I would not willingly put you to trouble 
without evincing my gratitude." 

" Well, then," replied Dee, " I will not refuse 
your request. And yet I would caution you 
to beware how you pry into the future. You 
may repent your rashness when it is too late." 


" I have no fear," rejoined Fawkes. " Let 
me know the worst." 

" Enough," answered Dee. " And now listen 
to me. That carcass having been placed in the 
ground without the holy rites of burial being 
duly performed, I have power over it. And, 
as the witch of Endor called up Samuel, as is 
recorded in Holy Writ, — as Erichtho raised up 
a corpse to reveal to Sextus Pompeius the event 
of the Pharsalian war, — as Elisha breathed life 
into the nostrils of the Shunamite's son, — as 
Alcestis was invoked by Hercules, — and as the 
dead maid was brought back to life by Apollonius 
Thyaneus, — so I, by certain powerful incanta- 
tions, will allure the soul of the prophetess, for 
a short space, to its former tenement, and compel 
it to answer my questions. Dare you be present 
at this ceremony?" 

" I dare," replied Fawkes. 

" Follow me, then," said Dee. " You will 
need all your courage." 

Muttering a hasty prayer, and secretly crossing 
himself, Guy Fawkes strode after him towards 
the grave. By the Doctor's directions, he, with 


some reluctance, assisted Kelley to raise the 
corpse, and convey it to the charnel. Dee fol- 
lowed, bearing the lantern, and, on entering the 
building, closed and fastened the door. 

The chamber in which Guy Fawkes found 
himself was in perfect keeping with the horrible 
ceremonial about to be performed. In one corner 
lay a mouldering heap of skulls, bones, and other 
fragments of mortality ; in the other a pile of 
broken coffins, emptied of their tenants, and 
reared on end. But what chiefly attracted his 
attention, was a ghastly collection of human 
limbs, blackened with pitch, girded round with 
iron hoops, and hung, like meat in a shambles, 
against the wall. There were two heads, and, 
though the features were scarcely distinguishable, 
owing to the liquid in which they had been 
immersed, they still retained a terrific expression 
of agony. Seeing his attention directed to these 
revolting objects, Kelley informed him they were 
the quarters of the two priests who had recently 
been put to death, which had been left there 
previously to being placed on the church-gates. 
The implements, and some part of the attire 


used by the executioner in his butcherly office, 
were scattered about, and mixed with the tools 
of the sexton ; while in the centre of the room 
stood a large wooden frame supported by trestles. 
On this frame, stained with blood and smeared 
with pitch, showing the purpose to which it had 
been recently put, the body was placed. This 
done, Doctor Dee set down the lantern beside it ; 
and, as the light fell upon its livid features, sullied 
with earth, and exhibiting traces of decay, Guy 
Fawkes was so appalled by the sight that he 
half repented of what he had undertaken. 

Noticing his irresolution, Doctor Dee said, 
" You may yet retire if you think proper."" 

" No ;" replied Fawkes, rousing himself; " I 
will go through with it." 

" It is well," replied Dee. And he extin- 
guished the light. 

An awful silence now ensued, broken only 
by a low murmur from Doctor Dee, who ap- 
peared to be reciting an incantation. As he 
proceeded, his tones became louder, and his 
accents those of command. Suddenly, he paused, 
and seemed to await a response. But, as none 


was made, greatly to the disappointment of 
Guy Fawkes, whose curiosity, notwithstand- 
ing his fears, was raised to the highest pitch, 
he cried, " Blood is wanting to complete the 

" If that is all, I will speedily supply the 
deficiency,'" replied Guy Fawkes ; and, drawing 
his rapier, he oared his left arm, and pricked 
it deeply with the point of the weapon. 
" I bleed now," he cried. 
" Sprinkle the corpse with the ruddy current," 
rejoined Doctor Dee. 

" Your commands are obeyed," replied Fawkes. 
" I have placed my hand on its breast, and the 
blood is flowing upon it." 

Upon this the Doctor began to mutter an 
incantation in a louder and more authoritative 
tone than before. Presently, Kelley added his 
voice, and they both joined in a sort of chorus, 
but in a jargon wholly unintelligible to Guy 

All at once a blue flame appeared above their 
heads, and, slowly descending, settled upon the 
brow of the corpse, lighting up the sunken 


cavities of the eyes, and the discoloured and 
distorted features. 

" The charm Works, 11 shouted Doctor Dee. 

"She moves! she moves! 1 ' exclaimed Guy 
Fawkes. " She is alive ! " 

" Take off your hand, 1 '' cried the Doctor, " or 
mischief may ensue. 11 And he again continued 
his incantation. 

" Down on your knees! 11 he exclaimed, at 
length, in a terrible voice. " The spirit is at 
hand. 11 

There was a rushing sound, and a stream of 
dazzling lightning shot down upon the corpse, 
which emitted a hollow groan. In obedience to 
the Doctor's commands, Guy Fawkes had pro- 
strated himself on the ground ; but he kept his 
gaze steadily fixed on the body, which, to his 
infinite astonishment, slowly arose, until it stood 
erect upon the frame. There it remained per- 
fectly motionless, with the arms close to the sides, 
and the habiliments torn and dishevelled. The 
blue light still retained its position upon the brow, 
and communicated a horrible glimmer to the 
features. The spectacle was so dreadful that 


Guy Fawkes would fain have averted his eyes, 
but he was unable to do so. Doctor Dee and 
his companion, meanwhile, continued their invo- 
cations, until, as it seemed to Fawkes, the lips 
of the corpse moved, and an awful voice exclaim- 
ed, " Why have you called me ?" 

" Daughter ! 11 replied Doctor Dee, rising, " in 
life thou wert endowed with the gift of prophecy. 
In the grave, that which is to come must be 
revealed to thee. "We would question thee.'' 1 

" Speak, and I will answer," replied the corpse. 

" Interrogate her, my son, 11 said Dee, address- 
ing Fawkes, " and be brief, for the time is short. 
So long only as that flame burns have I power 
over her. 11 

" Spirit of Elizabeth Orton, 11 cried Guy Fawkes, 
" if indeed thou standest before me, and some 
demon hath not entered thy frame to delude me, 
— by all that is holy, and by every blessed saint, I 
adjure thee to tell me whether the scheme on 
which I am now engaged for the advantage of the 
Catholic Church will prosper ? " 

" Thou art mistaken, Guy Fawkes, 11 returned 


the corpse. " Thy scheme is not for the ad- 
vantage of the Catholic Church." 

" I will not pause to inquire wherefore," con- 
tinued Fawkes. "But, grant that the means 
are violent and wrongful, will the end be suc- 
cessful ?" 

" The end will be death," replied the corpse. 

" To the tyrant — to the oppressors ? " de- 
manded Fawkes. 

" To the conspirators," was the answer. 

" Ha !" ejaculated Fawkes. 

" Proceed, if you have aught more to ask," 
cried Doctor Dee. " The flame is expiring." 

" Shall we restore the fallen religion ?" de- 
manded Fawkes. 

But before the words could be pronounced the 
light vanished, and a heavy sound was heard, as 
of the body falling on the frame. 

" It is over," said Doctor Dee. 

" Can you not summon her again ? " asked 
Fawkes, in a tone of deep disappointment. " I 
had other questions to ask." 

" Impossible ! " replied the Doctor. " The 

VOL. I. H 


spirit is fled, and will not be recalled. We must 
now commit the body to the earth. And this 
time it shall be more decently interred. r> 

" My curiosity is excited, — not satisfied," said 
Guy Fawkes. " Would it were to occur again !" 

" It is ever thus," replied Doctor Dee. " We 
seek to know that which is interdicted, — and 
quench our thirst at a fountain that only inflames 
our curiosity the more. Be warned, my son. 
You are embarked on a perilous enterprise, and 
if you pursue it, it will lead you to certain de- 

" I cannot retreat," rejoined Fawkes, " and 
would not, if I could. I am bound by an oath 
too terrible to be broken." 

u I will absolve you of your oath, my son," 
said Doctor Dee, eagerly. 

" You cannot, reverend sir," replied Fawkes. 
" By no sophistry could I clear my conscience of 
the ties imposed upon it. I have sworn never 
to desist from the execution of this scheme, unless 
those engaged in it shall give me leave. Nay, 
so resolved am I, that if I stood alone I would 
go on." 


As he spoke, a deep groan issued from the 

" You are again warned, my son," said 

" Come forth," said Guy Fawkes, rushing to- 
wards the door, and throwing it open. " This 
place stifles me." 

The night has already been described as bright 
and beautiful. Before him stood the Collegiate 
Church bathed in moonlight. He gazed ab- 
stractedly at this venerable structure for a few 
moments, and then returned to the charnel, where 
he found Doctor Dee and Kelley employed in 
placing the body of the prophetess in a coffin, 
which they had taken from a pile in the corner 
He immediately proffered his assistance, and in 
a short space the task was completed. The coffin 
was then borne towards the grave, at the edge of 
which it was laid while the burial-service was 
recited by Doctor Dee. This ended, it was 
lowered into its shallow resting-place, and speedily 
covered with earth. 

When all was ready for their departure, the 



Doctor turned to Fawkes, and, bidding him fare- 
well, observed, 

" If you are wise, my son, you will profit 
by the awful warning you have this night re- 

" Before we part, reverend sir," replied Fawkes, 
" I -would ask if you know of other means where- 
by an insight may be obtained into the future ?" 

" Many, my son," replied Dee. " I have a 
magic glass, in which, with due preparation, 
you may behold exact representations of coming 
events. I am now returning to the College, and 
if you will accompany me, I will show it to you." 

The offer was eagerly accepted, and the party 
quitted the churchyard. 




The old College of Manchester occupied, as 
is well known, the site of the existing structure, 
called after the benevolent individual by whom 
that admirable charity was founded, and whom 
we have ventured to introduce in this history, — 
the Chetham Hospital. Much, indeed, of the 
ancient building remains ; for though it was con- 
siderably repaired and enlarged, being " very 
ruinous and in great decay," at the time of its 
purchase in 1654, by the feoffees under Hum- 
phrey Chetham's will, from the sequestrators of 
the Earl of Derby's estates, still the general 
character of the fabric has been preserved, and 
several of its chambers retained. Originally built 
on the foundation of a manor-house denominated 
The Baron's Hall, — the abode of the Grelleys 


and the De la Warrs, lords of Manchester, — 
the College continued to be used as the resi- 
dence of the warden and fellows of the Collegiate 
Church until the reign of Edward the First, 
when that body was dissolved. On the acces- 
sion, however, of Mary, the College was re-estab- 
lished ; but the residence of the ecclesiastical 
body being removed to a house in Deansgate, 
the building was allowed to become extremely 
dilapidated, and was used partly as a prison for 
recusants and other offenders, and partly as a 
magazine for powder. In this state Doctor Dee 
found it when he succeeded to the wardenship 
in 1595, and preferring it, notwithstanding its 
ruinous condition, to the house appointed for 
him elsewhere, took up his abode within it. 

Situated on a high rock, overhanging the river 
Irk — at that time a clear stream, remarkable for 
the excellence of its fish, — and constructed en- 
tirely of stone, the old College had then, and 
still has to a certain extent, a venerable and 
monastic appearance. During Dee's occupation 
of it, it became a sort of- weird abode in the eyes 
of the vulgar, and many a timorous look was 


cast at it by those who walked at eventide on 
the opposite bank of the Irk. Sometimes the 
curiosity of the watchers was rewarded by behold- 
ing a few sparks issue from the chimney, and 
now and then, the red reflection of a fire might 
be discerned through the window. But gener- 
ally nothing could be perceived, and the building 
seemed as dark and mysterious as its occupant. 

One night, however, a loud explosion took 
place, — so loud, indeed, that it shook the whole 
pile to its foundation, dislodged one or two of 
the chimneys, and overthrew an old wall, the 
stones of which rolled into the river beneath. 
Alarmed by the concussion, the inhabitants of 
Hunt's Bank rushed forth, and saw, to their 
great alarm, that the wing of the College occu- 
pied by Doctor Dee was in flames. Though 
many of them attributed the circumstance to 
supernatural agency, and were fully persuaded 
that the enemy of mankind was at that instant 
bearing off the conjuror and his assistant, and 
refused to interfere to stop the conflagration, 
others more humane, and less superstitious, hast- 
ened to lend their aid to extinguish the flames. 


On reaching the College, they could scarcely 
credit their senses on finding that there was 
no appearance of fire ; and they were met by 
the Doctor and his companion at the gates, 
who informed them that their presence was un- 
necessary, as all danger was over. From that 
night Doctor Dee's reputation as a wizard was 
firmly established. 

At the period of this history, Doctor Dee was 
fast verging on eighty, having passed a long 
life in severe and abstruse study. He had tra- 
velled much, had visited most of the foreign 
courts, where he was generally well received, and 
was profoundly versed in mathematics, astronomy, 
the then popular science of judicial astrology, 
and other occult learning. So accurate were his 
calculations esteemed, that he was universally 
consulted as an oracle. For some time, he re- 
sided in Germany, where he was invited by the 
Emperor Charles the Fifth, and retained by his 
brother and successor, Ferdinando. » He next 
went to Louvain, where his reputation had pre- 
ceded him ; and from thence to Paris, where 
he lectured at the schools on geometry, and 


was offered a professorship of the university, 
but declined it. On his return to England in 
1551, he was appointed one of the instructors 
of the youthful monarch, Edward the Sixth, 
who presented him with an annual pension of 
a hundred marks. This he was permitted to 
commute for the rectory of Upton-upon-Severn, 
which he retained until the accession of Mary, 
when being charged with devising her Majesty's 
destruction by enchantments, — certain waxen 
images of the Queen having been found within 
his abode, — he was thrown into prison, rigor- 
ously treated, and kept in durance for a long 
period. At length, from want of sufficient proof 
against him, he was liberated. 

Dee shared the common fate of all astrologers : 
he was alternately honoured and disgraced. His 
next patron was Lord Robert Dudley (afterwards 
the celebrated Earl of Leicester), who,, it is well- 
known, was a firm believer in the superstitious 
arts to which Dee was addicted, and by whom he 
was employed, on the accession of Elizabeth, 
to erect a scheme to ascertain the best day for 
her coronation. His prediction was so fortunate 

h 5 


that it procured him the favour of the Queen, 
from whom he received many, marks of regard. 
As it is not needful to follow him through his 
various wanderings, it may be sufficient to men- 
tion, that in 1564 he proceeded to Germany on 
a visit to the Emperor Maximilian, to whom 
he dedicated his " Monas Hieroglyphica ;™ that 
in 1571 he fell grievously sick in Lorrain, whi- 
ther two physicians were despatched to his aid by 
Elizabeth ; and that on his recoveryiie returned 
to his own country, and retired to Mortlake, 
where he gathered together a vast library, com- 
prising the rarest and most curious works on all 
sciences, together with a large collection of manu- 

While thus living in retirement, he was sought 
out by Edward Kelley, a native of Worcester- 
shire, who represented himself as in possession 
of an old book of magic, containing forms of 
invocation, by which spirits might be summoned 
and controlled, as well as a ball of ivory, found 
in the tomb of a bishop who had made great 
progress in hermetic philosophy, which was filled 
with the powder of projection. These treasures 


Kelley offered to place in the hands of the 
Doctor on certain conditions, which were imme- 
diately acquiesced in, and thenceforth Kelley 
became a constant inmate in his house, and an 
assistant in all his practices. Shortly afterwards, 
they were joined by a Polish nobleman, Albert 
de Laski, Palatine of Suabia, whom they accom- 
panied to Prague, at the instance of the Emperor 
Rodolph the Second, who desired to be initiated 
into their mysteries. Their reception at this court 
was not such as to induce a long sojourn at it ; 
and Dee having been warned by his familiar 
spirits to sell his effects and depart, complied 
with the intimation, and removed to Poland. 
The same fate attended him here. The nuncio 
of the Pope denounced him as a sorcerer, and 
demanded that he should be delivered up to the 
Inquisition. This was refused by the monarch ; 
but Dee and his companion were banished from 
his dominions, and compelled to fly to Bohemia, 
where they took refuge in the castle of Trebona, 
belonging to Count Rosenberg. Shortly after- 
wards, Dee and Kelley separated, the magical 
instruments being delivered to the former, who 


bent his course homewards ; and on his arrival 
in London was warmly welcomed by the Queen. 
During his absence, his house at Mortlake had 
been broken open by the populace, under the 
pretence of its being the abode of a wizard, 
and rifled of its valuable library and manuscripts, 
— a loss severely felt by its owner. Some 
years were now passed by Dee in great destitu- 
tion, during which he prosecuted his studies 
with the same ardour as before, until at length 
in 1595, when he was turned seventy, fortune 
again smiled upon him, and he was appointed 
to the wardenship of the College at Manchester, 
whither he repaired, and was installed in great 

But his residence in this place was not des- 
tined to be a tranquil one. His reputation as 
a dealer in the black art had preceded him, 
and rendered him obnoxious to the clergy, with 
whom he had constant disputes, and a feud 
subsisted between him and the fellows of his 
church. It has already been mentioned that 
he refused to occupy the house allotted him, 
but preferred taking up his quarters in the old 


dilapidated College. Various reasons were as- 
signed by his enemies for this singular choice 
of abode. They affirmed — and with some rea- 
son — that he selected it because he desired to 
elude observation, — and that his mode of life, 
sufficiently improper in a layman, was altogether 
indecorous in an ecclesiastic. By the common 
people he was universally regarded as a conjuror 
— and many at first came to consult him ; but 
he peremptorily dismissed all such applicants ; 
and, when seven females, supposed to be possess- 
ed, were brought to him that he might exercise 
his power over the evil spirits, he refused to 
interfere. He also publicly examined and re- 
buked a juggler, named Hartley, who pretended 
to magical knowledge. But these things did 
not blind his enemies, who continued to harass 
him to such a degree, that he addressed a petition 
to James the First, entreating to be brought 
to trial, when the accusations preferred against 
him might be fully investigated, and his character 
cleared. The application, and another to the 
like effect addressed to parliament, were disregard- 
ed. Dee had not been long established in Man- 


Chester when he was secretly joined by Kelley, and 
they recommenced their search after the grand 
secret, — passing the nights in making various 
alchymical experiments, or in fancied conferences 
with invisible beings. 

Among other magical articles possessed by 
Doctor Dee was a large globe of crystal, which 
he termed the Holy Stone, because he believed 
it had been brought him by "angelical ministry; " 
and " in which," according to Meric Casaubon, 
"and out of which, by persons qualified for it, 
and admitted to the sight of it, all shapes and 
figures mentioned in every action were seen, 
and voices heard." The same writer informs 
us it was " round-shaped, of a pretty bigness, 
and most like unto crystal." Dee himself de- 
clared to the Emperor Rodolph, "that the spirits 
had brought him a stone of that value that no 
earthly kingdom was of such worthiness as to 
be compared to the virtue and dignity thereof." 
He was in the habit of daily consulting this 
marvellous stone, and recording the visions he 
saw therein, and the conferences he held through 
it with the invisible world. 


Followed by Guy Fawkes and Kelley, the 
Doctor took his way down Long Mill Gate, 
and stopping at an arched gateway on the left' 
near which, on the site of the modem structure, 
stood the public school, founded a century before 
by Hugh Oldham, Bishop of Exeter, — he un- 
locked a small wicket, and entered a spacious 
court, surrounded on one side by high stone 
walls, and on the other by a wing of the College. 

Conducting his guest to the principal entrance 
of the building, which lay at the farther end 
of the court, Doctor Dee ushered him into a 
large chamber, panelled with oak, and having a 
curiously-moulded ceiling, ornamented with gro- 
tesque sculpture. This room, still in existence, 
and now occupied by the master of the school, 
formed Doctor Dee's library. Offering Fawkes 
a chair, the Doctor informed him that when 
all was ready, Kelley should summon him, and, 
accompanied by his assistant, he withdrew. Half 
an hour elapsed before Kelley returned. Motion- 
ing Guy Fawkes to follow him, he led the way 
through several intricate passages to a chamber 
which was evidently the magician's sacred retreat. 


In a recess on one side stood a table, covered 
with cabalistic characters and figures, referring 
to the celestial influences. On it was placed 
the holy stone, diffusing such a glistening ra- 
diance as is emitted by the pebble called cat's-eye. 
On the floor a wide circle was described, in 
the rings of which magical characters, resembling 
those on the table, were traced. In front stood 
a brasier, filled with flaming coals ; and before 
it hung a heavy black curtain, appearing to 
shroud some mystery from view. 

Desiring Fawkes to place himself in the cen- 
tre of the circle, Doctor Dee took several in- 
gredients from a basket handed him by Kelley, 
and cast them into the brasier. As each herb 
or gum was ignited, the flame changed its colour ; 
now becoming crimson, now green, now blue, 
while fragrant or noxious odours loaded the 
atmosphere. These suffumigations ended, Dee 
seated himself on a chair near the table, whither 
he was followed by Kelley, and commanding 
Fawkes not to move a footstep, as he valued 
his safety, he waved his wand, and began in a 
solemn tone to utter an invocation. As he con- 
tinued, a hollow noise was heard overhead, 


which gradually increased in loudness, until it 
appeared as if the walls were tumbling about 
their ears. 

" The spirits are at hand !" cried Dee. " Do 
not look behind you, or they will tear you in 

As he spoke, a horrible din was heard, as of 
mingled howling, shrieking, and laughter. It 
was succeeded by a low faint strain of music, 
which gradually died away, and then all was 

" All is prepared," cried Dee. " Now, what 
would you behold ? " 

" The progress of the great enterprise," re- 
plied Fawkes. 

Doctor Dee waved his wand. The curtains 
slowly unfolded, and Guy Fawkes perceived as 
in a glass a group of dark figures ; amongst 
which he noticed one in all respects resembling 
himself. A priest was apparently proposing an 
oath, which the others were uttering. 

<c Do you recognise them ?" said Doctor Dee. 

" Perfectly, " replied Fawkes. 

" Look again," said Dee. 

As he spoke the figures melted away, and 


a new scene was presented on the glass. It was 
a gloomy vault, filled with barrels, partly covered 
with fagots and billets of wood. 

1* Have you seen enough ? " demanded Dee. 

" No," replied Fawkes, firmly. " I have seen 
what is past. I would behold that which is 
to come." 

" Look again, then," rejoined the Doctor, 
waving his wand. 

For an instant the glass was darkened, and 
nothing could be discerned except the lurid 
flame and thick smoke arising from the brasier. 
The next moment, an icy chill shot through the 
frame of Guy Fawkes as he beheld a throng of 
skeletons arranged before him. The bony fin- 
gers of the foremost of the grisly assemblage 
were pointed towards an indistinct object at its 
feet. As this object gradually became more de- 
fined, Guy Fawkes perceived that it was a figure 
resembling himself, stretched upon the wheel, 
and writhing in the agonies of torture. 

He uttered an exclamation of terror, and the 
curtains were instantly closed. 

Half an hour afterwards, Guy Fawkes quitted 
the College, and returned to the Seven Stars. 

Off o'y-o cvruHr^ luvwI'C-- 




On the following morning, Guy Fawkes had 
a long and private conference with Father Old- 
corne. The priest appeared greatly troubled by 
the communication made to him, but he said 
nothing, and was for some time lost in reflection, 
and evidently weighing within himself what 
course it would be best to pursue. His un- 
easiness was not without effect on Viviana Rad- 
clirTe, and she ventured at last to inquire whether 
he apprehended any new danger. 

" I scarcely know what I apprehend, dear 
daughter," he answered. " But circumstances 
have occurred which render it impossible we can 
remain longer in our present asylum with safe- 
ty. We must quit it at nightfall." 

"Is our retreat then discovered?" inquired 
Viviana, in alarm. 


" Not as yet, I trust," replied Oldcorne ; 
" but I have just ascertained from a messenger 
that the pursuivant, who, we thought, had de- 
parted for Chester, is still lingering within the 
town. He has offered a large reward for my 
apprehension, and having traced us to Manches- 
ter, declares he will leave no house unsearched 
till he finds us. He has got together a fresh 
band of soldiers, and is now visiting every place 
he thinks likely to afford us shelter." 

"If this is the case," rejoined Viviana, 
" why remain here a single moment ? Let us 
fly at once." 

" That would avail nothing, — or rather, it 
would expose us to fresh risk, dear daughter," 
replied Oldcorne. " Every approach to the town 
is guarded, and soldiers are posted at the corners 
of the streets, who stop and examine each sus- 
pected person." 

" Heaven protect us ! " exclaimed Viviana. 

" But this is not all," continued the priest. 
" By some inexplicable and mysterious means, 
the designs of certain of the most assured friends 
of the Catholic cause have come to the know- 


ledge of our enemies, and the lives and safeties 
of many worthy men will be endangered : amongst 
others, that of your father." 

" You terrify me !" cried Viviana. 

" The rack shall force nothing from me, fa- 
ther," said Fawkes, sternly. 

" Nor from me, my son," rejoined Oldcorne. 
" I have that within me which will enable me 
to sustain the bitterest agonies that the perse- 
cutors of our Church can inflict." 

" Nor shall it force aught from me," added 
Viviana. " For, though you have trusted me 
with nothing that can implicate others, I plainly 
perceive some plot is in agitation for the restora- 
tion of our religion, and I more than suspect 
Mr. Catesby is its chief contriver." 

" Daughter !" exclaimed Oldcorne, uneasily. 

" Fear nothing, father," she rejoined. " As 
I have said, the rack shall not force me to betray 
you. Neither should it keep me silent when 
I feel that my counsel — such as it is — may avail 
you. The course you are pursuing is a danger- 
ous and fatal one, — dangerous to yourselves, and 
fatal to the cause you would serve. Do not 


deceive yourselves, You are struggling hope- 
lessly and unrighteously, and Heaven will never 
assist an undertaking which has its aim in the 
terrible waste of life you meditate. v 

Father Oldcorne made no reply, but walked 
apart with Guy Fawkes ; and Viviana aban- 
doned herself to sorrowful reflection. 

Shortly after this, the door was suddenly 
thrown open, and Humphrey Chetham rushed 
into the room. His looks were full of appre- 
hension, and Viviana was at no loss to perceive 
that some calamity was at hand. 

" What is the matter ?" she cried, rising. 

" The pursuivant and bis men are below," he 
replied. " They are interrogating the hostess, 
and are about to search the house. I managed 
to pass them unperceived." 

" We will resist them to the last," said Guy 
Fawkes, drawing a petronel. 

" Resistance will be in vain," rejoined Hum- 
phrey Chetham. " They more than treble our 

"Is there no means of escape?" asked Vi- 


" None whatever," replied Chethain. " I hear 
them on the stairs. The terrified hostess has 
not dared to deny you, and is conducting them 

"Stand back!" cried Guy Fawkes, striding 
towards the door, "and let me alone confront 
them. That accursed pursuivant has escaped 
me once. But he shall not do so a second 

" My son," said Oldcorne, advancing towards 
him, " preserve yourself, if possible. Your life 
is of consequence to the great cause. Think not 
of us — think not of revenging yourself upon this 
caitiff. But think of the high destiny for which 
you are reserved. That window offers a means 
of retreat. Avail yourself of it. Fly ! — 

"Ay, fly!" repeated Viviana. "And you, 
Humphrey Chetham, — your presence here can 
do no good. Quick ! — they come !" 

" Nothing should induce me to quit you at 
such a moment, Viviana," replied Chetham, " but 
the conviction that I may be able to liberate you, 
should these miscreants convey you to prison." 


« Fly ! — fly, my son," cried Oldcorne. a They 
are at the door." 

Thus urged, Guy Fawkes reluctantly yielded 
to Oldcorne's entreaties, and sprang through the 
window. He was followed by Chetham. Vi- 
viana darted to the casement, and saw that they 
had alighted in safety on the ground, and were fly- 
ing swiftly up Shude Hill. Meanwhile, the pur- 
suivant had reached the door, which Chetham 
had taken the precaution to fasten, and was 
trying to burst it open. The bolts offered but 
a feeble resistance to his fury, and the next mo- 
ment he dashed into the room, at the head of 
a band of soldiers. 

" Seize them !" he cried. " Ha !" he added, 
glancing round the room with a look of dis- 
appointment, " where are the others ? Where 
is the soldier in the Spanish garb ? Where 
is Humphrey Chetham ? Confess at once, 
dog !" he continued, seizing the priest by the 
throat, " or I will pluck the secret from your 

" Do not harm him," interposed Viviana. 6i I 
will answer the question. They are fled." 


" Fled V echoed the pursuivant in conster- 
nation. " How ?" 

" Through that window," replied Viviana. 

11 After them ! " cried the pursuivant to some 
of his attendants. " Take the soldier, dead or 
alive ! — And now," he continued, as his orders 
were obeyed, " you, Father Oldcorne, Jesuit and 
traitor, and you, Viviana Radcliffe, his shelterer 
and abettor, I shall convey you both to the pri- 
son on Salford Bridge. Seize them, and bring 
them along." 

" Touch me not," rejoined Viviana, pushing 
the men aside, who rudely advanced to obey their 
leader's command. " You have no warrant for 
this brutality. I am ready to attend you. Take 
my arm, father." 

Abashed at this reproof, the pursuivant stalked 
out of the room. Surrounded by the soldiers, 
Viviana and the priest followed. The sad pro- 
cession was attended by crowds to the very door 
of the prison, where, by the pursuivant's com- 
mands, they were locked in separate cells. 

The cell in which Viviana was confined was 
a small chamber at the back of the prison, and 

VOL. I. I 


on the upper story. It had a small grated 
window overlooking the river. It has already 
been mentioned that this prison was originally 
a chapel built in the reign of Edward the Third, 
and had only recently been converted into a place 
of security for recusants. The chamber allotted 
to Viviana was contrived in the roof, and was 
so low that she could scarcely stand upright in 
it. It was furnished with a chair, a small table, 
and a straw pallet. 

The hours passed wearily with Viviana as 
they were marked by the deep-toned clock of 
the Collegiate Church, the tall tower of which 
fronted her window. Oppressed by the most 
melancholy reflections, she was for some time 
a prey almost to despair. On whatever side 
she looked, the prospect was equally cheerless, 
and her sole desire was that she might find a 
refuge from her cares in the seclusion of a convent. 
For this she prayed, — and she prayed also 
that Heaven would soften the hearts of her 
oppressors, and enable those who suffered to 
endure their yoke with patience. In the evening 
provisions were brought her, and placed upon 


the table, together with a lamp, by a surly 
looking gaoler. But Viviana had no inclination 
to eat, and left them untouched. Neither could 
she prevail upon herself to lie down on the 
wretched pallet, and she therefore determined 
to pass the night in the chair. 

After some hours of watchfulness, her eyelids 
closed, and she continued to slumber until she 
was aroused by a slight noise at the window. 
Starting at the sound, she flew towards it, and 
perceived in the gloom the face of a man. She 
would have uttered a loud cry, when the cir- 
cumstances of her situation rushed to her mind, 
and the possibility that it might be a friend 
checked her. The next moment satisfied her 
that she had acted rightly. A voice, which 
she recognised as that of Humphrey Chetham, 
called to her by name in a low tone, bidding 
her fear nothing, as he was come to set her free. 

" How have you managed to reach this win- 
dow ? " asked Viviana. 

" By a rope ladder," he answered. " I con- 
trived in the darkness to clamber upon the roof 
of the prison from the parapets of the bridge, 



and, after securing the ladder to a projection, 
dropped the other end into a boat, rowed by 
Guy Fawkes, and concealed beneath the arches 
of the bridge. If I can remove this bar so 
as to allow you to pass through the window, dare 
you descend the ladder?" 

" No," replied Viviana, shuddering. " My 
brain reels at the mere idea." 

" Think of the fate you will escape," urged 

" And what will become of Father Oldcorne ?" 
asked Viviana. " Where is he ? " 

" In the cell immediately beneath you," re- 
plied Chetham. 

" Can you not liberate him ?" she continued. 

" Assuredly, if he will risk the descent," an- 
swered Chetham, reluctantly. 

" Free him first," rejoined Viviana, " and 
at all hazards I will accompany you." 

The young merchant made no reply, but dis- 
appeared from the window. Viviana strained 
her gaze downwards ; but it was too dark to allow 
her to see anything. She, however, heard a noise 
like that occasioned by a file ; and shortly after- 


wards a few muttered words informed her that 
the priest was passing through the window. The 
eords of the ladder shook against the bars of her 
window, — and she held her breath for fear. 
From this state of suspense she was relieved 
in a few minutes by Humphrey Chetham, who 
informed her that Oldcorne had descended in 
safety, and was in the boat with Guy Fawkes. 

" I will fulfil my promise," replied Viviana, 
trembling ; " but I fear my strength will fail 

" You had better find death below than tarry 
here," replied Humphrey Chetham, who as he 
spoke was rapidly filing through the iron bar. 
"In a few minutes this impediment will be 
removed. 1 '' 

The young merchant worked hard, and in 
a short time the stout bar yielded to his efforts. 

" Now, then," he cried, springing into the 
room, " you are free." 

" I dare not make the attempt," said Viviana ; 
" my strength utterly fails me." 

" Nay, then," he replied ; " I will take the 
risk upon myself. You must not remain here." 


So saying, he caught her in his arms, and bore 
her through the window. 

With some difficulty, and no little risk, he 
succeeded in gaining a footing on the ladder. 
This accomplished, he began slowly to descend. 
When half way down, he found he had overrated 
his strength, and he feared he should be com- 
pelled to quit his hold ; but, nerved by his 
passion, he held on, and making a desperate 
effort, completed the descent in safety. 




Assisted by the stream, and plying his 
oars with great rapidity, Guy Fawkes soon 
left the town far behind him ; nor did he relax 
his exertions until checked by Humphrey Chet- 
ham. He then ceased rowing, and directed 
the boat towards the left bank of the river. 

" Here we propose to land," observed the 
young merchant to Viviana. " We are not 
more than a hundred yards from Ordsall Cave, 
where you can take refuge for a short time, while 
I proceed to the Hall, and ascertain whether 
you can return to it with safety." 

" I place myself entirely in your hands," she 
replied ; " but I fear such a course will be to 
rush into the very face of danger. Oh ! that 


I could join my father at Holywell ! With 
him I should feel secure." 

66 Means may be found to effect your wishes," 
returned Humphrey Chetham ; "but, after the 
suffering you have recently endured, it will 
scarcely be prudent to undertake so long a 
journey without a few hours'* repose. To-mor- 
row, — or the next day, — you may set out." 

" I am fully equal to it now," rejoined Viviana, 
eagerly ; " and any fatigue I may undergo will 
not equal my present anxiety. You have 
already done so much for me, that I venture 
to presume still further upon your kindness. 
Provide some means of conveyance for me and 
for Father Oldcorne to Chester, and I shall for 
ever be beholden to you." 

" I will not only do what you desire, Viviana, 
if it be possible," answered Chetham; "but, 
if you will allow me, I will serve as your escort." 

" And I, also," added Guy Fawkes. 

"All I fear is, that your strength may fail 
you," continued the young merchant in a tone 
of uneasiness. 


" Fear nothing then," replied Viviana. " I 
am made of firmer material than you imagine. 
Think only of what you can do, and doubt not 
my ability to do it, also." 

" I ever deemed you of a courageous nature, 
daughter," observed Oldcorne ; " but your re- 
solution surpasses my belief." 

By this time the boat had approached the 
shore. Leaping upon the rocky bank, the young 
merchant assisted Viviana to land, and then 
performed the same service for the priest. Guy 
Fawkes was the last to disembark ; and, having 
pulled the skiff aground, he followed the others, 
who waited for him at a short distance. The 
night was profoundly dark, and the path they 
had taken, being shaded by large trees, was 
scarcely discernible. Carefully guiding Viviana, 
who leaned on him for support, the young mer- 
chant proceeded at a slow pace, and with the 
utmost caution. Suddenly, they were surprised 
and alarmed by a vivid blaze of light bursting 
through the trees on the left. 

" Some building must be on fire ! " exclaimed 

i .-, 


" It is Ordsall Hall, — it is your father's resi- 
dence, 11 cried Humphrey Chetham. 

" It is the work of that accursed pursuivant, I 
will be sworn, 11 said Guy Fawkes. 

" If it be so, may Heaven^ fire consume 
him ! " rejoined Oldcorne. 

" Alas ! alas ! " cried Viviana, bursting into 
tears, " I thought myself equal to every calamity; 
but this new stroke of fate is more than I can 
bear. 11 

As she spoke, the conflagration evidently in- 
creased. The sky was illumined by the red 
reflection of the flames ; and as the party 
hurried forward to a rising ground, whence a 
better view could be obtained of the spectacle, 
they saw the dark walls of the ancient mansion 
apparently wrapped in the devouring element. 

" Let us hasten thither, 11 cried Viviana, dis- 

" I and Guy Fawkes will fly there, 11 replied 
the young merchant, " and render all the assist- 
ance in our power. But, first, let me convey 
you to the cave. 11 

More dead than alive, Viviana suffered herself 


to be borne in that direction. Making his -way 
over every impediment, Chetham soon reached 
the excavation ; and depositing his lovely burthen 
upon the stone couch, and leaving her in charge 
of the priest, he hurried with Guy Fawkes to- 
wards the Hall. 

On arriving at the termination of the avenue, 
they found, to their great relief, that it was 
not the main structure, but an outbuilding which 
was in flames, and from its situation the young 
merchant conceived it to be the stables. As 
soon as they made this discovery, they slackened 
their pace, being apprehensive, from the shouts 
and other sounds that reached them, that some 
hostile party might be among the assemblage. 
Crossing the drawbridge — which was fortunately 
lowered, — they were about to shape their course 
towards the stables, which lay at the further 
side of the Hall, when they perceived the old 
steward, Heydocke, standing at the doorway 
and wringing his hands in distraction. Hum- 
phrey Chetham immediately called to him. 

" I should know that voice ! n cried the old 
man, stepping forward. " Ah ! Mr. Chetham, 


is it you ? You are arrived at a sad time, 
sir — a sad time — to seethe old house, where 
I have dwelt, man and boy, sixty years and more, 
in flames. But one calamity has trodden upon 
the heels of another. Ever since Sir William 
departed for Holywell nothing has gone right 
— nothing whatever. First, the house was search- 
ed by the pursuivant and his gang; then, my 
young mistress disappeared ; then it was rifled 
by these plunderers ; and now, to crown all, it 
is on fire, and will speedily be burnt to the 

" Say not so," replied the young merchant. 
" The flames have not yet reached the Hall; 
and, if exertion is used, they may be extin- 
guished without further mischief." 

" Let those who have kindled them extinguish 
them," replied Heydocke, sullenly. " I will 
not raise hand more." 

"Who are the incendiaries?" demanded 

"The pursuivant and his myrmidons," replied 
Heydocke. "They came here to-night; and 
after ransacking the house under pretence of 


procuring further evidence against my master, 
and carrying off everything valuable they could 
collect, — plate, jewels, ornaments, money, and 
even wearing-apparel, — they ended by locking 
up all the servants, — except myself, who ma- 
naged to elude their vigilance, — in the cellar, 
and setting fire to the stables." 

" Wretches !" exclaimed Humphrey Chetham. 

" Wretches, indeed I" repeated the steward. 
" But this is not all the villany they contem- 
plate. I had concealed myself in the store-room, 
under a heap of lumber, and in searching for me 
they chanced upon a barrel of gunpowder — " 

" Well !" interrupted Guy Fawkes. 

" Well, sir, 11 pursued Heydocke, " I heard 
the pursuivant remark to one of his comrades, 
6 This is a lucky discovery. If we can't find 
the steward, we '11 blow him and the old house 
to the devil.' Just then, some one came to tell 
him I was hidden in the stables, and the whole 
troop adjourned thither. But being baulked 
of their prey, I suppose, they wreaked their ven- 
geance in the way you perceive." 

" No doubt," rejoined Humphrey Chetham. 


" But they shall bitterly rue it. I will myself 
represent the affair to the Commissioners." 

" It will be useless," groaned Heydocke. 
" There is no law to protect the property of a 

" Where is the barrel of gunpowder you spoke 
of ? " asked Guy Fawkes, as if struck by a sudden 

" The villains took it with them when they 
quitted the store-room," replied the steward. " I 
suppose they have got it in the yard." 

u They have lighted a fire which shall be 
quenched with their blood," rejoined Fawkes 
fiercely. " Follow me. I may need you both." 

So saying, he darted off, and turning the 
corner, came in front of the blazing pile. Oc- 
cupying one side of a large quadrangular court, the 
stables were wholly disconnected with the Hall, 
and though the fire burnt furiously, yet as the 
wind carried the flames and sparks in a contrary 
direction, it was possible the latter building 
might escape if due precaution were taken. So 
far, however, from this being the case, it seemed 
the object of the bystanders to assist the pro- 


gross of the conflagration. Several horses, sad- 
dled and bridled, had been removed from the 
stable, and placed within an open cowhouse. To 
these Guy Fawkes called Chetham's attention, 
and desired him and the old steward to secure 
some of them. Hastily giving directions to 
Heydocke, the young merchant obeyed, — sprang 
on the back of the nearest courser, and seizing 
the bridles of two others, rode off with them. 
His example was followed by Heydocke, and 
one steed only was left. Such was the confusion 
and clamour prevailing around, that the above 
proceeding passed unnoticed. 

Guy Fawkes, meanwhile, ensconcing himself 
behind the court-gate, looked about for the barrel 
of gunpowder. For some time he could dis- 
cover no trace of it. At length, beneath a shed, 
not far from him, he perceived a soldier seated 
upon a small cask, which he had no doubt was 
the object he was in search of. So intent was 
the man upon the spectacle before him, that he 
was wholly unaware of the approach of an enemy; 
and creeping noiselessly up to him, Guy Fawkes 
felled him to the ground with a blow from the 


heavy butt-end of his petronel. The action was 
not perceived by the others ; and carrying the 
cask out of the yard, Fawkes burst in the lid, 
and ascertained that the contents were what they 
had been represented. He then glanced around, 
to see how he could best execute his purpose. 

On the top of the wall adjoining the stables 
he beheld the pursuivant, with three or four 
soldiers, giving directions and issuing orders. 
Another and lower wall, forming the opposite 
side of the quadrangle, and built on the edge 
of the moat, approached the scene of the fire, 
and on this, Guy Fawkes with the barrel of 
gunpowder on his shoulder, mounted. Concealing 
himself behind a tree which overshadowed it, 
he watched a favourable moment for his enterprise. 

He had not to wait long. Prompted by 
some undefinable feeling, which caused him to 
rush upon his destruction, the pursuivant ven- 
tured upon the roof of the stables, and was 
followed by his companions. No sooner did 
this occur, than Guy Fawkes dashed forward, 
and hurled the barrel with all his force into the 
midst of the flames, throwing himself at the same 


moment into the moat. The explosion was 
instantaneous and tremendous; — so loud as to 
be audible even under the water. Its effects 
were terrible. The bodies of the pursuivant 
and his companions were blown into the air, 
and carried to the further side of the moat. Of 
those standing before the building, several were 
destroyed, and all more or less injured. The 
walls were thrown down by the concussion, and 
the roof and its fiery fragments projected into 
the moat. An effectual stop was put to the 
conflagration ; and, when Guy Fawkes rose to 
the boiling and agitated surface of the water, 
the flames were entirely extinguished. Hearing 
groans on the opposite bank of the moat, he 
forced his way through the blazing beams, which 
were hissing near hini ; and snatching up a still 
burning fragment, hastened in the direction of 
the sound. In the blackened and mutilated 
object that met his gaze, lie recognised the 
pursuivant. The dying wretch also recognised 
him, and attempted to speak; but in vain — his 
tongue refused its office, and with a horrible 
attempt at articulation he expired. 


Alarmed by the explosion, the domestics, — who 
it has already been mentioned, were confined in 
the cellar, — were rendered so desperate by their 
fears, that they contrived to break out of their 
prison, and now hastened to the stables to ascer- 
tain the cause of the report. Leaving them 
to assist the sufferers, whose dreadful groans 
awakened some feelings of compunction in his 
iron breast, Guy Fawkes caught the steed, — 
which had broken its bridle and rushed off, and 
now stood shivering, shaking, and drenched in 
moisture near the drawbridge, — and, mounting 
it, galloped towards the cave. 

At its entrance, he was met by Humphrey 
Chetham and Oldcorne, who eagerly inquired 
what had happened. 

Guy Fawkes briefly explained. 

"It is the hand of Heaven manifested by 
your arm, my son," observed the priest. " Would 
that it had stricken the tyrant and apostate 
prince by whom our Church is persecuted ! But 
his turn will speedily arrive." 

" Peace, father !" cried Guy Fawkes sternly. 

" I do not lament the fate of the pursuivant," 


observed Humphrey Chetham. " But this is 
a frightful waste of human life — and in such a 
cause !" 

"It is the cause of Heaven, young sir," re- 
joined the priest, angrily. 

" I do not think so," returned Chetham ; 
" and, but for my devotion to Viviana, I would 
have no further share in it." 

" You are at liberty to leave us, if you think 
proper," retorted the priest, coldly. 

" Nay, say not so, father," interposed Viviana, 
who had been an unobserved listener to the fore- 
going discourse. " You owe your life — your 
liberty to Mr. Chetham." 

" True, daughter," replied the priest. " I have 
been too hasty, and entreat his forgiveness." 

" You have it, reverend sir," rejoined the 
young merchant. " And now, Master Hey- 
docke," he added, turning to the steward, " you 
may return to the Hall with safety. No one 
will molest you more, and your presence may be 

" But my young mistress — " said Heydocke. 

" I am setting out for Holywell to join my 


father," replied Viviana. Ct You will receive 
our instructions from that place." 

" It is well," returned the old man, bowing 
respectfully. " Heaven shield us from further 
misfortune ! " 

Humphrey Chetham having assisted Viviana 
into the saddle, and the rest of the party having 
mounted, they took the road to Chester, while 
Heydocke returned to the Hall. 




Early on the following morning, the party, 
who had ridden hard, and had paused only for 
a short time at Knutsford to rest their steeds, 
approached the ancient and picturesque city of 
Chester. Skirting its high, and then partly 
fortified walls, above which appeared the massive 
tower of the venerable cathedral, they passed 
through the east-gate, and proceeding along the 
street deriving its name from that entrance, were 
about to halt before the door of a large hostel, 
called the Sain_t Werburgh's Abbey, when, to 
their great surprise, they perceived Catesby 
riding towards them. 

" I thought I could not be mistaken, 1 ' cried 
the latter, as he drew near and saluted Viviana. 
" I was about to set out for Manchester with 


a despatch to you from your father, Miss Rad- 
cliffe, when this most unexpected and fortunate 
encounter spares me the journey. But may 
I ask why I see you here, and thus attend- 
ed?" he added, glancing uneasily at Humphrey 

A few words from Father Oldcorne explained 
all. Catesby affected to bend his brow, and 
appear concerned at the relation. But he could 
scarcely repress his satisfaction. 

" Sir William Radcliffe must join us now,*' 
he whispered to the priest. 

"He must — he shall" replied Oldcorne, in 
the same tone. 

" Your father wishes you to join him at Holt, 
Miss RaddlAe," remarked Catesby, turning to 
her, " whence the pilgrimage starts to-morrow 
for Saint Winifred's Well. There are already 
nearly thirty devout persons assembled. 1 "' 

" Indeed !" replied Viviana. " May I inquire 
their names ? " 

" Sir Everard and Lady Digby," replied Cates- 
by ; " the Lady Anne Vaux and her sister, Mrs. 
Brooksby ; Mr. Ambrose Rookwood and his 


wife, the two Winters, Tresham, Wright, Fathers 
Garnet and Fisher, and many others, in all 
probability unknown to you. The procession 
started ten days ago from Gothurst, in Bucking- 
hamshire, Sir Everard Digby's residence, and 
proceeded from thence by slow stages to Nor- 
brook and Haddington, at each of which houses 
it halted for some days. Yesterday, it reached 
Holt, and starts, as I have just told you, to- 
morrow for Holywell. If you are so disposed, 
you will be able to attend it." 

" I will gladly do so," replied Viviana. " And 
since I find it is not necessary to hurry forward, 
I will rest myself for a short time here." 

So saying, she dismounted, and the whole 
party entered the hostel. Viviana withdrew 
to seek a short repose, and glance over her 
father's letter, while Catesby, Guy Fawkes, and 
Oldcorne, were engaged in deep consultation. 
Humphrey Chetham, perceiving that his attend- 
ance was no further required, and that he was 
an object of suspicion and dislike to Catesby, — 
for whom he also entertained a similar aversion, — 
prepared to return. And when Viviana made 


her appearance, he advanced to bid her fare- 

" I can be of no further service to you, 
Viviana," he said, in a mournful tone ; " and 
as ray presence might be as unwelcome to your 
father, as it seems to be to others of your friends, 
T will now take my leave." 

" Farewell, Mr. Chetham," she replied. " I 
will not attempt to oppose your departure ; for, 
much as I grieve to lose, you — and that I do 
so these tears will testify, — I feel that it is for 
the best. I owe you much — more — far more 
than I can ever repay. It would be unworthy 
in me, and unfair to you, to say that I do 
not, and shall not ever feel the deepest interest 
in you ; that, next to my father, there is no 
one whom I regard — nay, whom I love so 

wt Love ! Viviana?" echoed the young mer- 
chant, trembling. 

" Love, Mr. Chetham," she continued, turn- 
ing very pale ; " since you compel me to repeat 
the word. I avow it boldly, because — " and 
her voice faltered, — " I would not have vou 


suppose me ungrateful, and because I never can 
be yours. 1 '' 

" I will not attempt to dissuade you from the 
fatal determination you have formed of burying 
your charms in a cloister," rejoined Humphrey 
Chetham. " But, oh ! if you do love me, why 
condemn yourself — why condemn me to hopeless 
misery ? " 

" I will tell you why, 1 ' replied Viviana. " Be- 
cause you are not of my faith ; and because I 
never will wed a heretic." 

u Iam answered," replied the young merchant, 

" Mr. Chetham," interposed Oldcorne, who 
had approached them unperceived ; "it is in 
your power to change Viviana's determination." 

" How?" asked the young merchant, starting. 

" By being reconciled to the Church of Rome." 

" Then it will remain unaltered," replied 
Chetham, firmly. 

"And, if Mr. Chetham would consent to this 
proposal, / would not," said Viviana. " Fare- 
well," she added, extending her hand to him, 
which he pressed to his lips. " Do not let us 

vol. i. k 


prolong an interview so painful to us both. The 
best wish I can desire for you is, that we may 
never meet again." 

Without another word, and without hazarding 
a look at the object of his affections, Chetham 
rushed out of the room, and mounting his horse, 
rode off in the direction of Manchester. 

" Daughter," observed Oldcorne, as soon as 
he was gone, " I cannot too highly approve 
of your conduct, or too warmly applaud the 
mastery you display over your feelings. But — " 
and he hesitated. 

" But what, father?" cried Viviana eagerly. 
" Do you think I have done wrong in dismissing 

" By no means, dear daughter," replied the 
priest. " You have acted most discreetly. But 
you will forgive me if I urge you — nay, implore 
you not to take the veil ; but rather to bestow 

your hand upon some Catholic gentleman " 

" Such as Mr. Catesby," interrupted Viviana, 
glancing in the direction of the individual she 
mentioned, who was watching them narrowly 
from the further end of the room. 


"Ay, Mr. Catcsby," repeated Oldcorne, af- 
fecting not to notice the scornful emphasis laid 
on the name. " None more fitting could be 
found, nor more worthy of you. Our Church 
has not a more zealous servant and upholder; 
and he will be at once a father and a husband 
to you. Such a union would be highly profit- 
able to our religion. And, though it is well 
for those whose hearts are burthened with afflic- 
tion, and who are unable to render any active 
service to their faith, to retire from the world, 
it behoves every sister of the Romish Church 
to support it at a juncture like the present, at 
any sacrifice of personal feeling." 

" Urge me no more, father," replied Viviana, 
firmly. " I will make every sacrifice for ■my* 
religion, consistent with principle and feeling. 
But I will not make this ; neither am I required 
to make it. And I beg you will entreat Mr. 
Catesby to desist from further importunity." 

Oldcorne bowed, and retired. Nor was an- 
other syllable exchanged between them prior to 
their departure. 

Crossing the old bridge over the Dee, then 



defended at each extremity by a gate and tower, 
the party took the road to Holt, where they 
arrived in about an hour. The recent conver- 
sation had thrown a restraint over them, which 
was not removed during the journey. Habitu- 
ally taciturn, as has already been remarked, Guy 
Fawkes seemed gloomier and more thoughtful 
than ever; and though he rode by the side of 
Viviana, he did not volunteer a remark, and 
scarcely appeared conscious of her presence. 
Catesby and Oldcorne kept aloof, and it was 
not until they came in sight of the little town 
which formed their destination that the former 
galloped forward, and striking into the path 
cm the right begged Viviana to follow him. A 
turn in the road shortly afterwards showed them 
a large mansion screened by a grove of beech 

u That is the house to which we are going," 
observed Catesby. 

And as he spoke, they approached a lodge, 
the gates of which being opened by an attendant, 
admitted them to the avenue. 

Viviana's heart throbbed with delight at the 


anticipated meeting with her father ; but she 
could not repress a feeling of anxiety at the dis- 
tressing intelligence she had to impart to him. 
As she drew near the house she perceived him 
walking beneath the shade of the trees with two 
other persons ; and quickening her pace, sprang 
from her steed, and almost before he was aware 
of it was in his arms. 

" Why do I see you here so unexpectedly, 
my dear child?" cried Sir William RadclifTe, 
as soon as he had recovered from the surprise 
which her sudden appearance occasioned him. 
M Mr. Catesby only left this morning, charged 
with a letter entreating you to set out without 
delay, — and now I behold you. What has hap- 
pened ? " 

Viviana then recounted the occurrences of the 
last few days. 

" It is as I feared," replied Sir William, in a 
desponding tone. " Our oppressors will never 
cease till they drive us to desperation !" 

"They will not!" rejoined a voice behin< 
him. " Well may we exclaim with the prophet 
— < How long, O Lord, shall I cry, and thou 


wilt not hear ? Shall I cry out to thee suffering 
violence, and thou wilt not save ? Why hast 
thou showed me iniquity and grievance, to see 
rapine and injustice before me ? Why lookest 
thou upon them that do unjust things, and 
holdest thy peace when the wicked devoureth 
the man that is more just than himself? 5 : 

Viviana looked in the direction of the speaker 
and beheld a man in a priestly garb, whose coun- 
tenance struck her forcibly. He was rather 
under the middle height, of a slight spare figure, 
and in age might be about fifty. His features, 
which in his youth must have been pleasing, 
if not handsome, and which were still regular, 
were pale and emaciated ; but his eye was dark, 
and of unusual brilliancy. A single glance at 
this person satisfied her it was Father Garnet, 
the provincial of the English Jesuits ; nor was 
she mistaken in her supposition. 

Of this remarkable person, so intimately con- 
nected with the main events of the history 
about to be related, it may be proper to offer 
some preliminary account. Born at Nottingham 
in 1554, in the reign of Queen Mary, and of 


obscure parentage, Henry Garnet was originally 
destined to the Protestant Church, and educated, 
with a view to taking orders, at Winchester 
school, whence it was intended he should be 
removed in due course to Oxford. But this 
design was never carried into effect. Influenced 
by motives, into which it is now scarcely worth 
while inquiring, and which have been contested 
by writers on both sides of the question, Garnet 
proceeded from Winchester to London, where 
lie engaged himself as corrector of the press 
to a printer of law-books, named Tottel, in 
which capacity he became acquainted with Sir 
Edward Coke and Chief Justice Popham, — 
one of whom was afterwards to be the leading 
counsel against him, and the other his judge. 
After continuing in this employment for two 
years, during which he had meditated a change 
in his religion, he went abroad, and travelling 
first to Madrid, and then to Rome, saw enough 
of the Catholic priesthood to confirm his reso- 
lution, and in 1575 he assumed the habit ot 
a Jesuit. Pursuing his studies with the utmost 
zeal and ardour at the Jesuits' College, under 


the celebrated Bellarmine, and the no less cele- 
brated Clavius, he made such progress, that 
upon the indisposition of the latter, he was able 
to fill the mathematical chair. Nor was he less 
skilled in philosophy, metaphysics, and divinity ; 
and his knowledge of Hebrew was so profound, 
that he taught it publicly in the Roman schools. 
To an enthusiastic zeal in the cause of the 
religion he had espoused, Garnet added great 
powers of persuasion and eloquence, — a combi- 
nation of qualities well fitting him for the office 
of a missionary priest ; and undismayed by the 
dangers he would have to encounter, and eager to 
propagate his doctrines, he solicited to be sent 
on this errand to his own country. At the 
instance of Father Persons, he received an ap- 
pointment to the mission in 1586, and he secret- 
ly landed in England in the same year. Braving 
every danger, and shrinking from no labour, he 
sought on all hands to make proselytes to the 
ancient faith, and to sustain the wavering courage 
of its professors. Two years afterwards, on the 
imprisonment of the Superior of the Jesuits, 
being raised to that important post, he was 


enabled to extend his sphere of action ; and 
redoubling his exertions in consequence, he so 
well discharged his duties, that it was mainly 
owing to him that the Catholic party was kept 
together during the fierce persecutions of the 
latter end of Elizabeth's reign. 

Compelled to personate various characters, as 
he travelled from place to place, Garnet had 
acquired a remarkable facility for disguise ; and 
such was his address and courage, that he not 
unfrequently imposed upon the very officers sent 
in pursuit of him. Up to the period of Eliza- 
beth's demise, he had escaped arrest ; and, 
though involved in the treasonable intrigue with 
the King of Spain, and other conspiracies, he 
procured a general pardon under the great seal. 
.His office and profession naturally brought him 
into contact with the chief Catholic families 
throughout the kingdom ; and he maintained an 
active correspondence with many of them, by 
means of his various agents and emissaries. The 
great object of his life being the restoration of 
the fallen religion, to accomplish this, as he con- 
ceived, great and desirable end, he was prepared 



to adopt any means, however violent or ob- 
noxious. When, under the seal of confession, 
Catesby revealed to him his dark designs, so 
far from discouraging him, all he counselled was 
caution. Having tested the disposition of the 
wealthier Romanists to rise against their oppres- 
sors, and finding a general insurrection, as has 
before been stated, impracticable, he gave every 
encouragement and assistance to the conspiracy 
forming among the more desperate and discon- 
tented of the party. At his instigation, the 
present pilgrimage to Saint Winifred's Well 
was undertaken, in the hope that, when so large 
a body of the Catholics were collected together, 
some additional aid to the project might be 

One of the most mysterious and inexplicable 
portions of Garnet's history is that relating to 
Anne Vaux. This lady, the daughter of Lord 
Vaux of Harrowden, a rigid Catholic nobleman, 
and one of Garnet's earliest patrons and friends, 
on the death of her father, in 1595, attached 
herself to his fortunes, — accompanied him in all 
his missions, — shared all his privations and dan- 


gers, — and, regardless of calumny or reproach, 
devoted herself entirely to his service. What 
is not less singular, her sister, who had married a 
Catholic gentleman named Brooksby, became his 
equally zealous attendant. Their enthusiasm pro- 
duced a similar effect on Mr. Brooksby; and 
wherever Garnet went, all three accompanied 

By his side, on the present occasion, stood 
Sir Everard Digby. Accounted one of the 
handsomest, most accomplished, and best-in- 
formed men of his time, Sir Everard, at the 
period of this history only twenty-four, had mar- 
ried, when scarcely sixteen, Maria, heiress of the 
ancient and honourable family of Mulshoe, with 
whom he obtained a large fortune, and the mag- 
nificent estate of Gothurst, or Gaythurst, in 
Buckinghamshire. Knighted by James the First 
at Belvoir Castle, on his way from Scotland to 
London, Digby, who had once formed one of 
the most brilliant ornaments of the court, had 
of late in a great degree retired from it. " Not- 
Avith standing," writes Father Green way, " that 
he had dwelt much in the Queen's court, and 


was in the way of obtaining honours and dis- 
tinction by his graceful manners and rare parts, 
he chose rather to bear the cross with the per- 
secuted Catholics, et vivere abjectus in domo 
Domini, than to sail through the pleasures of a 
palace and the prosperities of the world, to the 
shipwreck of his conscience and the destruction 
of his soul." Having only when he completed 
his minority professed the Catholic religion, he- 
became deeply concerned at its fallen state, and 
his whole thoughts were bent upon its restora- 
tion. This change in feeling was occasioned 
chiefly, if not altogether, by Garnet, by whom 
his conversion had been accomplished. 

Sir Everard Digby was richly attired in a 
black velvet doublet, with sleeves slashed with 
white satin, and wore a short mantle of the same 
material, similarly lined. He had the enormous 
trunk hose heretofore mentioned as the distin- 
guishing peculiarity of the costume of the period, 
and wore black velvet shoes, ornamented with 
white roses. An ample ruff encircled his throat. 
His hat was steeple-crowned, and somewhat 
broader in the leaf than was ordinarily worn, 


and shaded with a plume of black feathers. His 
hair was raven-black, and he wore a pointed 
beard, and mustaches. His figure was tall and 
stately, and his features grave and finely formed. 

By this time the group had been joined by 
the others, and a friendly greeting took place. 
Guy Fawkes was presented by Catesby to Sir 
William Radcliffe and Sir Everard Digby. To 
Garnet he required no introduction, and Father 
Oldcorne was known to all. After a little fur- 
ther conversation, the party adjourned to the 
house which belonged to a Welsh Catholic gen- 
tleman, named Griffiths, who, thougli absent at 
the time, had surrendered it to the use of Sir 
Everard Digby and his friends. 

On their entrance, Viviana was introduced by 
her father to Lady Digby, who presided as hos- 
tess, and welcomed her with great cordiality. 
She was then conducted to her own room, where 
she was speedily joined by Sir William, and they 
remained closeted together till summoned to the 
principal meal of the day. At the table, which 
was most hospitably served, Viviana found, in 
addition to her former companions, a large assem- 


blage, to most of whom she was a stranger, con- 
sisting of Anne Vaux, Mr. Brooksby and his 
wife, Ambrose Rookwood, two brothers named 
Winter, two Wrights, Francis Tresham, — per- 
sons of whom it will be necessary to make par- 
ticular mention hereafter, — and several others, 
in. all amounting to thirty. 

The meal over, the company dispersed, and 
Viviana and her father, passing through an open 
window, wandered forth upon a beautiful and 
spreading lawn, and thence under the shade of 
the beech-trees. They had not been long here, 
anxiously conferring on recent events, when they 
perceived Garnet and Catesby approaching. 

" Father,* dear father ! " cried Viviana, hastily, 
" I was about to warn you ; but I have not 
time to do so now. Some dark and dangerous 
plot is in agitation to restore our religion. Mr. 
Catesby is anxious to league you with it. Do 
not — do not yield to his solicitations !" 

" Fear nothing on that score, Viviana," re- 
plied Sir William, " I have already perplexities 
enow, without adding to them.'' 1 

" I will leave you, then,"' she replied. And, 


as soon as the others came up, she made some 
excuse for withdrawing, and returned to the 
house. The window of her chamber commanded 
the avenue, and from it she watched the group. 
They remained for a long time pacing up and 
down, in earnest conversation. By and by, they 
were joined by Oldcorne and Fawkes. Then 
came a third party, consisting of the Winters 
and Wrights ; and, lastly, Sir Everard Digby 
and Tresham swelled the list. 

The assemblage was then harangued by Cates- 
by, and the most profound attention paid to his 
address. Viviana kept her eye fixed upon her 
father's countenance, and from its changing ex- 
pression inferred what effect the speech produced 
upon him. At its conclusion, the assemblage 
separated in little groups ; and she perceived, 
with great uneasiness, that Father Garnet passed 
his arm through that of her father, and led him 
away. Some time elapsed, and neither of them 

M My warning was in vain, he has joined 
them !" she exclaimed. 

" No, Viviana !" cried her father's voice be- 


hind her. " I have not joined them. Nor 
shall I do so." 

"Heaven be praised!" she exclaimed, fling- 
ing her arms around his neck. 

Neither of them were aware that they were 
overheard by Garnet, who had noiselessly fol- 
lowed Sir William into the room, and muttered 
to himself — " For all this, he shall join the plot, 
and she shall wed Catesbv." 

He then coughed slightly, to announce his 
presence ; and, apologizing to Viviana for the 
intrusion, told her he came to confess her pre- 
viously to the celebration of mass, which would 
take place that evening, in a small chapel in the 
house. Wholly obedient to the command of her 
spiritual advisers, Viviana instantly signified her 
assent ; and, her father having withdrawn, she 
laid open the inmost secrets of her heart to the 
Jesuit. Severely reprobating her love for a 
heretic, before he would give her absolution, 
Garnet enjoined her, as a penance, to walk bare- 
foot to the holy well on the morrow, and to make 
a costly offering at the shrine of the saint. Com- 


pliance being promised to his injunction, he pro- 
nounced the absolution, and departed. 

Soon after this, mass was celebrated by Garnet, 
and the sacrament administered to the assem- 

An hour before daybreak, the party again 
assembled in the chapel, where matins were 
performed ; after which, the female devotees, 
who were clothed in snow-white woollen robes, 
with wide sleeves and hoods, and having large 
black crosses woven in front, retired for a short 
time, and re-appeared, with their feet bared, and 
hair unbound. Each had a large rosary attached 
to the cord that bound her waist. 

Catesby thought Viviana had never appeared 
so lovely as in this costume ; and as he gazed 
at her white and delicately formed feet, her small 
rounded ankles, her dark and abundant tresses 
falling in showers almost to the ground, he be- 
came more deeply enamoured than before. His 
passionate gaze was, however, unnoticed, as the 
object of it kept her eyes steadily fixed on the 
ground. Lady Digby, who was a most beautiful 


woman, scarcely appeared to less advantage ; and, 
as she walked side by side with Viviana in the 
procession, the pair attracted universal admiration 
from all who beheld them. 

Everything being at last in readiness, and the 
order of march fully arranged, two youthful cho- 
risters, in surplices, chanting a hymn to Saint 
Winifred, set forth. They were followed by 
two men bearing silken banners, on one of which 
was displayed the martyrdom of the saint whose 
shrine they were about to visit, and on the other 
a lamb carrying a cross ; next came Fathers Old- 
corne and Fisher, each sustaining a large silver 
crucifix ; next, Garnet alone, in the full habit 
of his order ; next, the females, in the attire 
before described, and walking two and two ; 
next, Sir Everard Digby, and Sir William Rad- 
cliffe ; and lastly, the rest of the pilgrims, to 
the number of fourteen. These were all on foot. 
But at the distance of fifty paces behind them 
rode Guy Fawkes and Catesby, at the head of 
twenty well-armed and well-mounted attendants, 
intended to serve as a guard in case of need. 
In such order, this singular procession moved 


forward at a slow pace, taking its course along 
a secluded road leading to the ridge of hills 
extending from the neighbourhood of Wrexham 
to Mold, and from thence, in an almost unbroken 
chain, to Holywell. 

Along these heights, whence magnificent views 
were obtained of the broad estuary of the Dee 
and the more distant ocean, the train proceeded 
without interruption ; and though the road se- 
lected was one seldom traversed, and through 
a country thinly peopled, still, the rumour of 
the pilgrimage having gone abroad, hundreds 
were stationed at different points to behold it. 
Some expressions of disapprobation were occa- 
sionally manifested by the spectators ; but the 
presence of the large armed force effectually pre- 
vented any interference. 

Whenever such a course could be pursued, 
the procession took its way over the sward. Still 
the sufferings of the females were severe in the 
extreme ; and before Viviana had proceeded a 
mile, her white, tender feet were cut and bruised 
by the sharp flints over which she walked ; every 
step she took leaving a bloody print behind 


it. Lady Digby was n little better condition. 
But such was the zeal by which they, in common 
with all the other devotees following them, were 
animated, that not a single murmur was uttered. 

Proceeding in this way, they reached at mid- 
day a small stone chapel on the summit of the 
hill overlooking Plas-Newydd, where they halted, 
and devotions being performed, the females bath- 
ed their lacerated limbs in a neighbouring brook, 
after which they were rubbed with a cooling and 
odorous ointment. Thus refreshed, they again 
set forward, and halting a second time at Plas- 
Isaf, where similar religious ceremonies were ob- 
served, they rested for the day at a lodging 
prepared for their reception in the vicinity of 

The night being passed in prayer, early in the 
morning they commenced their march in the 
same order as before. When Viviana first set 
her feet to the ground, she felt as if she were 
treading on hot iron, and the pain she endured 
was so excruciating, that she could not repress 
a cry. 

" Heed not your sufferings, dear daughter," 


observed Garnet, compassionately. " The waters 
of the holy fountain will heal the wounds both 
of soul and body." 

Overcoming her agony by a powerful effort, 
she contrived to limp forward ; and the whole 
party was soon after in motion. Halting for 
two hours at Pentre-Terfyn, and again at Ske- 
viog, the train, towards evening, reached the 
summit of the hill overlooking Holywell, at the 
foot of which could be seen the ruins of Basing- 
werk Abbey, and the roof of the ancient chapel 
erected over the sacred spring. At this sight, 
those who were foremost in the procession fell 
on their knees ; and the horsemen dismounting, 
imitated their example. An earnest supplica- 
tion to Saint Winifred was then poured forth 
by Father Garnet, in which all the others joined, 
and a hymn in her honour chanted by the 

Their devotions ended, the whole train arose, 
and walked slowly down the steep descent. As 
they entered the little town, which owes its name 
and celebrity to the miraculous spring rising 
within it, they were met by a large concourse 


of people, who had flocked from Flint and the 
other neighbouring places to witness the cere- 
monial. Most of the inhabitants of Holywell, 
holding their saintly patroness in the deepest 
veneration, viewed this pilgrimage to her shrine 
as a proper tribute of respect, while those of the 
opposite faith were greatly impressed by it. As 
the procession advanced, the crowd divided into 
two lines to allow it passage, and many fell on 
their knees imploring a blessing from Garnet, 
which he in no instance refused. When within 
a hundred yards of the sacred well, they were 
met by a priest, followed by another small train 
of pilgrims. A Latin oration having been pro- 
nounced by this priest, and replied to in the 
same language by Garnet, the train was once 
more put in motion, and presently reached the 
ancient fabric built over the sacred fountain. 

The legend of Saint Winifred is so well known, 
that it is scarcely necessary to repeat it. For 
the benefit of the uninformed, however, it may 
be stated that she flourished about the middle 
of the seventh century, and was the daughter of 
Thewith, one of the chief lords of Wales. De- 


voutly educated by a monk named Beuno, who 
afterwards received canonization, she took the 
veil, and retired to a small monastery (the ruins 
of which still exist), built by her father near 
the scene of her subsequent martyrdom. Per- 
secuted by the addresses of Caradoc, son of 
Alan, Prince of Wales, she fled from him to 
avoid his violence. He followed, and inflamed 
by fury at her resistance, struck off her head. 
For this atrocity, the earth instantly opened 
and swallowed him alive, while from the spot 
where the head had fallen gushed forth a foun- 
tain of unequalled force and purity, producing 
more than a hundred tons a minute. The 
bottom of this miraculous well is strewn with 
pebbles streaked with red veins, in memory 
of the virgin saint from whose blood it sprung. 
On its margin grows an odorous moss, while 
its gelid and translucent waters are esteemed 
a remedy for many disorders. Winifred's career 
did not terminate with her decapitation. Re- 
suscitated by the prayers of Saint Beuno, she 
lived many years a life of the utmost sanctity, 
bearing, as a mark of the miracle performed 


in her behalf, a narrow crimson circle round her 

Passing the chapel adjoining the well, built 
in the reign of Henry the Seventh by his 
mother, the pious Countess of Richmond, the 
pilgrims came to the swift clear stream rushing 
from the well. Instead of ascending the steps 
leading to the edifice built over the spring, 
they plunged into the stream, and crossing it 
entered the structure by a doorway on the further 
side. Erected by the Countess of Richmond 
at the same period as the chapel, this structure, 
quadrangular in form, and of great beauty, con- 
sists of light clustered pillars and mouldings, 
supporting the most gorgeous tracery and groin- 
ing, the whole being ornamented with sculptured 
bosses, pendent capitals, fretwork, niches, and 
tabernacles. In the midst is a large stone 
basin, to receive the water of the fountain, 
around which the procession now grouped, and 
as soon as all were assembled, at the command 
of Father Garnet they fell on their knees. 

It was a solemn and striking sight to see this 
large group prostrated around that beautiful 


fountain, and, covered by that ancient structure, 
— a touching thing to hear the voice of prayer 
mingling with the sound of the rushing water. 
After this, they all arose. A hymn was then 
chanted, and votive offerings made at the shrine 
of the saint. The male portion of the as- 
semblage then followed Garnet to the chapel, 
where further religious rites were performed, 
while the female devotees, remaining near the 
fountain, resigned themselves to the care of 
several attendants of their own sex, who, hav- 
ing bathed their feet in the water, applied 
some of the fragrant moss above described to 
the wounds ; and, such was the faith of the 
patients, or the virtue of the application, that 
in a short time they all felt perfectly restored, 
and able to join their companions in the chapel. 
In this way, the evening was spent ; and it 
was not until late that they finished their de- 
votions, and departed to the lodgings provided 
for them in the town. 

Impressed with a strange superstitious feeling, 
which he would scarcely acknowledge to himself, 
Guy Fawkes determined to pass the night 



near the well. Accordingly, without communi- 
cating his intention to his companions, he threw 
a small knapsack over his shoulder, containing 
a change of linen, and a few articles of attire, 
and proceeded thither. 

It was a brilliant moonlight night, and, as 
the radiance, streaming through the thin cluster- 
ed columns of the structure, lighted up its 
fairy architecture, and fell upon the clear cold 
waves of the fountain, revealing the blood-streak- 
ed pebbles beneath, the effect was inexpressibly 
beautiful. So charmed was Guy Fawkes by the 
sight, that he remained for some time stand- 
ing near the edge of the basin, as if fascinated 
by the marvellous spring that boiled up and 
sparkled at his feet. Resolved to try the 
efficacy of the bath, he threw off his clothes 
and plunged into it. The water was cold as 
ice ; but on emerging from it he felt wonderfully 
refreshed. Having dressed himself, he wrap- 
ped his cloak around him, and throwing himself 
on the stone floor, placed the knapsack under 
his head, and grasping a petronel in his right 


hand, to be ready in case of a surprise, disposed 
himself to slumber. 

Accustomed to a soldier's couch, he soon 
fell asleep. He had not long closed his eves 
when he dreamed that from out the well, a 
female figure, slight and unsubstantial as the 
element from which it sprang, arose. It was 
robed in what resembled a nun's garb ; buc 
so thin and vapoury, that the very moonlight 
shone through it. From the garments of the 
figure, as well as from the crimson circle round 
its throat, he knew that it must be the patroness 
of the place, the sainted Winifred, that he 
beheld. He felt no terror, but the deepest 
awe. The arm of the figure was raised, — its 
benignant regards fixed upon him, — and, as 
soon as it gained the level of the basin, it glided 
towards him. 

L 2 




Before daybreak on the following morning, 
Garnet, who had been engaged in earnest confer- 
ence with Catesby during the whole of the night, 
repaired to the sacred spring for the purpose of 
bathing within it, and performing his solitary 
devotions at the shrine of the saint. On ascend- 
ing the steps of the structure, he perceived Guy 
Fawkes kneeling beside the fountain, apparently 
occupied in prayer ; and, being unwilling to dis- 
turb him, he paused. Finding, however, after 
the lapse of a few minutes, that he did not move, 
he advanced towards him, and was about to lay 
his hand upon his shoulder, when he was arrested 
by the very extraordinary expression of his coun- 
tenance. His lips were partly open, but perfect- 


ly motionless, and his eyes, almost starting from 
their sockets, were fixed upon the boiling waters 
of the spring. His hands were clasped, and his 
look altogether Avas that of one whose faculties 
were benumbed by awe or terror. 

Aware of the fanatical and enthusiastic cha- 
racter of Fawkes, Garnet had little doubt that, 
by keeping long vigil at the fountain, he had 
worked himself into such a state of over- 
excitement as to imagine he beheld some pre- 
ternatural appearance ; and it was with some 
curiosity that he awaited the result. Glancing 
in the same direction, his eye rested upon the 
bottom of the well, but he could discern nothing 
except the glittering and blood-streaked pebbles, 
and the reflection of the early sunbeams that 
quivered on its steaming surface. At length, a 
convulsion passed over the frame of the kneeler, 
and heaving a deep sigh he arose. Turning to 
quit the spring, he confronted Garnet, and de- 
manded in a low voice, 

" Have you likewise seen the vision, father ?" 
Garnet made no reply, but regarded him stead- 


" Has the blessed Winifred appeared to you, 
I say ? " continued Fawkes. 

" No," answered Garnet ; "I am but just 
come hither. It is for you, my son, — the fa- 
voured of Heaven, — for whom such glorious visions 
are reserved. I have seen nothing. How did 
the saint manifest herself to you ?" 

64 In her earthly form," replied Fawkes ; "or 
rather, I should say, in the semblance of the 
form she bore on earth. Listen to me, father. 
I came hither last night to make my couch beside 
the fountain. After plunging into it, I felt 
marvellously refreshed, and disposed myself to 
rest on that stone. Scarcely had my eyes closed 
when the saintly virgin appeared to me. Oh ! 
father, it was a vision of seraphic beauty, such 
as the eye of man hath seldom seen ! " 

" And such only as it is permitted the elect of 
Heaven to see," observed Garnet. 

" Alas ! father," rejoined Guy Fawkes, u I 
can lay little claim to such an epithet. Nay, I 
begin to fear that I have incurred the displeasure 
of Heaven." 

" Think not so, my son," replied Garnet, un- 


easily. " Relate your vision, and I will inter- 
pret it to you." 

" Tims then it was, father," returned Fawkes. 
" The figure of the saint arose from out the well, 
and gliding towards me laid its finger upon my 
brow. My eyes opened, but I was as one op- 
pressed with a nightmare, unable to move. I 
then thought I heard my name pronounced by a 
voice so wondrously sweet that my senses were 
quite ravished. Fain would I have prostrated 
myself, but my limbs refused their office. Nei- 
ther could I speak, for my tongue was also en- 

" Proceed, my son," observed Garnet ; "I 
am curious to know what ensued." 

" Father," replied Guy Fawkes, " if the form 
I beheld was that of Saint Winifred, — and that 
it was so, I cannot doubt, — the enterprise on 
which we are engaged will fail. It is not ap- 
proved by Heaven. The vision warned me to 

" You cannot desist, my son," rejoined Garnet, 
sternly. " Your oath binds you to the project." 

" True," replied Fawkes ; " and I have no 


thought of abandoning it. But I am well as- 
sured it will not be successful." 

M Your thinking so, my son, will be the most 
certain means of realizing your apprehensions," 
replied Garnet, gravely. " But let me hear the 
exact words of the spirit. You may have mis- 
understood them." 

" I cannot repeat them precisely, father," re- 
plied Fawkes ; " but I could not misapprehend 
their import, which was the deepest commisera- 
tion for our forlorn and fallen church, but a posi- 
tive interdiction against any attempt to restore it 
by bloodshed. ' Suffer on, 1 said the spirit ; 'bear 
the yoke patiently, and in due season God will 
avenge your wrongs, and free you from oppression. 
You are thus afflicted that your faith may be 
purified. But if you resort to violence, you will 
breed confusion, and injure, not serve, the holy 
cause on which you are embarked.' Such, fa- 
ther, was the language of the saint. It was 
uttered in a tone so tender and sympathizing, 
that every word found an echo in my heart, and 
I repented having pledged myself to the under- 
taking. But, when I tell you that she added 


that all concerned in the conspiracy should pe- 
rish, perhaps you may be deterred from proceed- 
ing further." 

" Never !" returned Garnet. " Nor will I 
suffer any one engaged in it to retreat. What 
matter if a few perish, if the many survive ? Our 
blood will not be shed in vain, if the true reli- 
gion of God is restored. Nay, as strongly as 
the blessed Winifred herself resisted the impi- 
ous ravisher, Caradoc, will I resist all induce- 
ments to turn aside from my purpose. It may 
be that the enterprise will fail. It may be that 
we shall perish. But if we die thus, we shall 
die as martyrs, and our deaths will be highly 
profitable to the Catholic religion." 

" I doubt it," observed Fawkes. 

" My son," said Garnet, solemnly, " I have 
ever looked upon you as one destined to be the 
chief agent in the great work of redemption. I 
have thought that, like Judith, you were chosen 
to. destroy the Holofernes who oppresses us. 
Having noted in you a religious fervour, and 
resolution admirably fitting you for the task, 
I thought, and still think you expressly chosen 



by Heaven for it. But, if you have any mis- 
giving, I beseech you to withdraw from it. I 
will absolve you from your oath ; and, enjoining 
you only to strictest secrecy, will pray you to 
depart at once, lest your irresolution should be 
communicated to the others. ,, 

" Fear nothing from me, father,' ' rejoined 
Fawkes. " I have no irresolution, no wavering, 
nor shall any engaged with us be shaken by my 
apprehension. You have asked me what I saw 
and heard, and I have told you truly. But I 
will speak of it no* more." 

" It will be well to observe silence, my 
son," answered Garnet ; " for though you, like 
myself, are unnerved, its effect on others might 
be injurious. But you have not yet brought 
your relation to an end. How did the figure 
disappear ? " 

" As it arose, father," replied Fawkes. " Ut- 
tering in a sweet but solemn voice, which yet 
rings in my ears, the words, ' Be warned ! ' it 
glided back to the fountain, whose waves as 
it approached grew still, and gradually melted 
from my view." 


" But when I came hither, you appeared to 
be gazing at the spring," said Garnet. " What 
did you then behold ? " 

" My first impulse on awaking about an hour 
ago," replied Fawkes, " was to prostrate myself 
before the fountain, and to entreat the inter- 
cession of the saint, who had thus marvellously 
revealed herself to me. As I prayed, me- 
thought its clear lucid waters became turbid, 
and turned to the colour of blood." 

" It is a type of the blood of slaughtered 
brethren of our faith, which has been shed by 
our oppressors," rejoined Garnet. 

" Rather of our own, which shall be poured 
forth in this cause," retorted Fawkes. " No 
matter. I am prepared to lose the last drop 
of mine." 

44 And I," said Garnet ; " and, I doubt not, 
like those holy men who have suffered for their 
faith, that we shall both win a crown of martyr- 

"Amen!" exclaimed Fawkes. "And you 
think the sacrifice we are about to offer will 
prove acceptable to God ? " 


" I am convinced of it, my son," answered 
Garnet. " And I take the sainted virgin, from 
whose blood this marvellous spring was produced, 
to witness that I devote myself unhesitatingly to 
the project, and that I firmly believe it will profit 
our church ." 

As he spoke, a singular circumstance occurred, 
which did not fail to produce an impression on 
both parties, — especially Guy Fawkes. A vio- 
lent gust of wind, apparently suddenly aroused, 

whistled through the slender columns of the 

structure, and catching the surface of the water 
dashed it in tiny waves against their feet. 

" The saint is offended,"" observed Fawkes. 

" It would almost seem so," replied Garnet, 
after a pause. " Let us proceed to the chapel, 
and pray at her shrine. We will confer on this 
matter hereafter. Meantime, swear to me that 
you will observe profound secrecy respecting this 

" I swear," replied Guy Fawkes. 

At this moment, another and more violent 
gust agitated the fountain. 

" We will tarry here no longer," said Garnet. 


" I am not proof against these portents of 

So saying, he led the way to the chapel. Here 
they were presently joined by several of the fe- 
male devotees, including Yiviana, Anne Vaux, 
and Lady Digby. Matins were then said, after 
which various offerings were made at the shrine 
of the saint. Lady Digby presented a small 
tablet set in gold, representing on one side the 
martyrdom of Saint Winifred, and on the other 
the Salutation of our Lady. Anne Vaux gave 
a small enamelled cross of gold ; Viviana a 
girdle of the same metal, with a pendant sus- 
taining a small Saint John's head surrounded 
with pearls. 

" Mine will be a poor soldier's offering," said 
Guy Fawkes, approaching the shrine, which was 
hung around with the crutches, staves, and band- 
ages of those cured by the healing waters of the 
miraculous spring. " This small silver scallop- 
shell, given me by a pilgrim, who died in my 
arms near the chapel of Saint James of Com- 
postella, in Spain, is the sole valuable I pos- 


" It will be as acceptable as a more costly 
gift, my son," replied Garnet, placing it on the 

Of all the offerings then made, that silver 
scallop-shell is the only one preserved. 




On Viviana's return from her devotions, she 
found her father in the greatest perturbation and 
alarm. The old steward, Heydocke, who had 
ridden express from Ordsall Hall, had just ar- 
rived, bringing word that the miserable fate of 
the pursuivant and his crew had aroused the 
whole country ; that officers, attended by a 
strong force, and breathing vengeance, were in 
pursuit of Sir William Radcliffe and his daugh- 
ter ; that large sums were offered for the cap- 
ture of Guy Fawkes and Father Oldcorne ; that 
most of the servants were imprisoned ; that he 
himself had escaped with great difficulty ; and 
that, to sum up this long catalogue of calamities, 
Master Humphrey Chetham was arrested, and 


placed in the New Fleet. " In short, my dear 
young mistress,' 1 concluded the old man, "as I 
have just observed to Sir William, all is over 
with us, and there is nothing left but the grave/' 

" What course have you resolved upon, dear 
father ? V inquired Viviana, turning anxiously 
to him. 

" I shall surrender myself," he answered. " I 
am guilty of no crime, and can easily clear my- 
self from all imputation." 

<; You are mistaken," she replied. " Do not 
hope for justice from those who know it not. 
But, while the means of escape are allowed you, 
avail yourself of them." 

il No, Viviana," replied Sir William Rad- 
cliffe, firmly ; " my part is taken. I shall 
abide the arrival of the officers. For you, I 
shall intrust you to the care of Mr. Catesby." 

" You cannot mean this, dear father," she 
cried, with a look of distress. " And, if you 
do, I will never consent to such an arrange- 

" Mr. Catesby is strongly attached to you, 
child," replied Sir William, " and will watch over 


your safety as carefully as I could do my- 

" He may be attached to me," rejoined Vi- 
viana, " though I doubt the disinterestedness 
of his love. But nothing can remove my repug- 
nance to him. Forgive me, therefore, if, in this 
one instance I decline to obey your commands. 
I dare not trust myself with Mr. Catesby." 

" How am I to understand you ?" inquired 
Sir William. 

" Do not ask me to explain, dear father," 
she answered, " but imagine I must have good 
reason for what I say. Since you are resolved 
upon surrendering yourself, I will go into capti- 
vity with you. The alternative is less dreadful 
than that you have proposed." 

" You distract me, child," cried the knight, 
rising and pacing the chamber in great agitation. 
" I cannot bear the thought of your imprison- 
ment. Yet if I fly, I appear to confess myself 

" If your worship will intrust Mistress Vi- 
viana with me," interposed the old steward, " I 
will convey her whithersoever you direct, — will 


watch over her day and night, — and, if need be, 
die in her defence." 

" Thou wert ever a faithful servant, good 
Heydocke," rejoined Sir William, extending 
his hand kindly to him, "and art as true in 
adversity as in prosperity.' 1 

" Shame to me if I were not," replied Hey- 
docke, pressing the knight's fingers to his lips 
and bathing them in his tears. " Shame to me 
if I hesitated to lay down my life for a master 
to whom I owe so much." 

"If it is your pleasure, dear father," observed 
Viviana, " I will accompany Master Heydocke ; 
but I would far rather be permitted to remain 
with you." 

" It would avail nothing," replied Sir William, 
" we should be separated by the officers. Retire 
to your chamber, and prepare for instant depar- 
ture ; and, in the mean while, I will consider 
what is best to be done." 

" Your worship's decision must be speedy," 
observed Heydocke : " I had only a few hours' 
start of the officers. They will be here ere 


" Take this purse," replied Sir William, " and 
hire three of the fleetest horses you can procure, 
and station yourself at the outskirts of the town, 
on the road to Saint Asaph. You understand." 

" Perfectly," replied Heydocke. And he de- 
parted to execute his master's commands, while 
Viviana withdrew to her own chamber. 

Left alone, the knight was perplexing himself 
as to where he should shape his course, when he 
was interrupted by the sudden entrance of Cates- 
by and Garnet. 

" We have just met your servant, Sir Wil- 
liam," said the former, "and have learnt the 
alarming intelligence he has brought." 

" What is your counsel in this emergency, 
father ?" said Radcliffe, appealing to Garnet. 

" Flight, — instant flight, my son," was the 

" My counsel is resistance," said Catesby. 
" We are here assembled in large numbers, and 
are well armed. Let us await the arrival of 
the officers, and see whether they will venture 
to arrest you." 

" They will arrest us all, if they have force 


sufficient to do so," replied Garnet ; " and there 
are many reasons, as you well know, why it 
is desirable to avoid any disturbance at pre- 
sent. 11 

" True,'" replied Catesby. " What say you 
then," he continued, addressing Radcliffe, " to 
our immediate return to Holt, where means 
may be found to screen you till this storm is 
blown over ? " 

Sir William having assented to the proposal, 
Catesby instantly departed to acquaint the others, 
and, as soon as preparations could be made, and 
horses procured, the whole party composing the 
pilgrimage, quitted Holywell, and, ascending the 
hill at the back of the town took the direction 
of Mold, where they arrived, having ridden at a 
swift pace, in about half an hour. From thence 
they proceeded, without accident or interruption, 
to the mansion they had recently occupied near 
Holt. On reaching it, all the domestics were 
armed, and certain of their number stationed 
at the different approaches to the house to give 
the alarm in case of the enemy's appearance. 


But as nothing occurred during the night, the 
fears of Sir William and his friends began in 
some degree to subside. 

About noon, on the following day, as Guy 
Fawkes, who ever since the vision at Saint Wini- 
fred's Well had shunned all companionship, walk- 
ed forth beneath the avenue alone, he heard a 
light step behind him, and, turning, beheld 
Viviana. Gravely bowing, he was about to pur- 
sue his course, when quickening her pace she 
was instantly by his side. 

" I have a favour to solicit, 11 she said. 

" There is none I would refuse you, 11 answer- 
ed Fawkes, halting; " but, though I have the 
will, I may not have the power to grant your 
request. 11 

" Hear me, then, 11 she replied, hurriedly. " Of 
all my father's friends — of all who are here as- 
sembled, you are the only one I dare trust, — 
the only one from whom I can hope for assist- 
ance. 11 

" I am at once nattered and perplexed by your 
words, Viviana, 11 he rejoined ; " nor can I guess 


whither they tend. But speak freely. If I 
cannot render you aid, I can at least give you 
counsel. 1 ' 

" I must premise, then," said Viviana, " that 
I am aware from certain obscure hints let fall by 
Father Oldcorne, that you, Mr. Catesby, and 
others are engaged in a dark and dangerous con- 

u Viviana Radcliffe," returned Guy Fawkes, 
sternly, " you have once before avowed your 
knowledge of this plot. I will not attempt dis- 
guise with you. A project is in agitation for 
the deliverance of our fallen church ; and, since 
you have become acquainted with its existence — 
no matter how — you must be bound by an oath 
of secrecy, or," and his look grew darker, and his 
voice sterner, " I will not answer for your life." 

" I will willingly take the oath, on certain con- 
ditions," said Viviana. 

" You must take it unconditionally," rejoined 

'? Hear me out," said Viviana. " Knowing 
that Mr. Catesby and Father Garnet are anxious 
to induce my father to join this conspiracy, I 


came hither to implore you to prevent him from 
doing so." 

" Were I even willing to do this, — which I 
am not," replied Fawkes, " I have not the 
power. Sir William Radcliffe would be justly 
indignant at any interference on my part." 

w Heed not that," replied Viviana. " You, I 
fear, are linked to this fearful project beyond 
the possibility of being set free. But he is not. 
Save him ! save him ! " 

" I will take no part in urging him to join it," 
replied Fawkes. " But I can promise nothing 

" Then mark me," she returned ; '* if further 
attempts are made by any of your confederates to 
league him with their plot, I myself will disclose 
all I know of it." 

" Viviana," rejoined Fawkes, in a threatening 
tone, " I again warn you that you endanger your 

"I care not," she rejoined; "I would risk 
twenty lives, if I possessed them, to preserve my 

u You are a noble-hearted lady," replied 


Fawkes, unable to repress the admiration inspired 
by her conduct ; " and if I can accomplish what 
} r ou desire, I will. But I see not how it can be 

" Everything is possible to one of your resolu- 
tion, " replied Viviana. 

" Well, well, - " replied Fawkes, a slight smile 
crossing his rugged features ; " the effort at least 
shall be made." 

" Thanks ! thanks !" ejaculated Viviana ; and, 
overcome by her emotion, she sank half-fainting 
into his arms. 

While he held her thus, debating within him- 
self whether he should convey her to the house, 
Garnet and Catesby appeared at the other end of 
the avenue. Their surprise at the sight was ex- 
treme ; nor was it less when Viviana, opening 
her eyes as they drew near, uttered a slight cry, 
and disappeared. 

" This requires an explanation," said Catesby, 
glancing fiercely at Fawkes. 

" You must seek it, then, of the lady," re- 
joined the latter, moodily. 

" It will be easily explained, I have no doubt," 


interposed Garnet. " Miss Radcliffe was seized 
with a momentary weakness, and her companion 
offered her support." 

" That will scarcely suffice for me," cried 

" Let the subject be dropped for the present," 
rejoined Garnet, authoritatively. " More im- 
portant matter claims our attention. We came 
to seek you, my son," he continued, addressing 
Fawkes. " All those engaged in the great en- 
terprise are about to meet in a summer-house in 
the garden." 

"lam ready to attend you," replied Fawkes. 
« Will Sir William Radcliffe be there ?" 

" No," replied Garnet ; " he has not yet join- 
ed us. None will be present at this meeting 
but the sworn conspirators." 

With this, the trio took their way towards 
the garden, and proceeding along a walk edged 
with clipped yew-trees, came to the summer- 
house, — a small circular building overrun with 
ivy and creepers, and ornamented in front by two 
stone statues on pedestals. Here they found 
Sir Everard Digby, Ambrose Rookwood, Francis 

VOL. I. M 


Tresham,' Thomas and Robert Winter, John and 
Christopher Wright, awaiting their arrival. 

The door being closed and bolted, Garnet, 
placing himself in the midst of the assemblage, 
said, '" Before we proceed further, I will again 
administer the oath to all present." Drawing 
from his vest a primer, and addressing Sir Ever- 
ard Digby, he desired him to kneel, and continu- 
ed thus in a solemn tone, " You shall swear by 
the Blessed Trinity, and by the sacrament you 
propose to receive, never to disclose directly nor 
indirectly, by word or circumstance, the matter 
that shall be proposed to you to keep secret, nor 
desist from the execution thereof, until the rest 
shall give you leave.'" 

il I swear," replied Digby, kissing the primer. 

The oath was then taken in like manner by the 
others. This done, Catesby was about to ad- 
dress the meeting, when Tresham, glancing un- 
easily at the door, remarked, " Are you assured 
we have no eavesdroppers ? " 

" I will keep watch without," rejoined Fawkes, 
" if you have any fears." 

" It were better," replied Robert Winter. 


" We cannot be too cautious. But if you go 
forth, you will not be able to take part in tlie 
discussion. 11 

" My part is to act, not talk, 11 rejoined 
Fawkes, marching towards the door. And shut- 
ting it after him, he took up his position out- 

Upon this Catesby commenced a long and in- 
flammatory harangue, in which he expatiated with 
great eloquence and fervour on the wrongs of the 
Catholic party, and the deplorable condition of 
their church. " It were easy to slay the tyrant 
by whom we are oppressed," he said, in conclu- 
sion ; u but his destruction would be small gain 
to us. We must strike deeper, to hew down the 
baneful stock of heresy. All our adversaries 
must perish with him, and in such manner as 
shall best attest the vengeance of Heaven. 
Placed beneath the Parliament-house, a mine of 
powder shall hurl its heretical occupants into the 
air, — nor shall any one survive the terrible ex- 
plosion. Are we all agreed to this plan ?" 

All the conspirators expressed their assent, ex- 
cept Sir Everard Digby. 

u 2 


" Before I give my concurrence to the mea- 
sure," observed the latter ; "I would fain be 
resolved by Father Garnet whether it is lawful 
to destroy some few of our own faith with so 
many heretics." 

" Unquestionably, my son," replied Garnet. 
"As in besieging a city we have a right to kill 
all within it, whether friends or enemies, so in 
this case we are justified in destroying the in- 
nocent with the guilty, because their destruction 
will be advantageous to the Catholic cause." 

"lam satisfied," replied Digby. 

"As to the tyrant and apostate James," con- 
tinued Garnet, "he is excommunicated, and his 
subjects released from their allegiance. I have 
two breves sent over by his holiness Pope Clement 
VIII. three years ago, one directed to the clergy, 
and the other to the nobility of this realm, where- 
in, alluding to Queen Elizabeth, it is expressly 
declared that, ' so soon as that miserable woman 
should depart out of this life, none shall be per- 
mitted to ascend the throne, how near soever in 
proximity of blood, unless they are such as will 
not only tolerate the Catholic faith, but in every 


way support it.' By this brief, James is ex- 
pressly excluded. He has betrayed, not sup- 
ported the church of Rome. Having broken his 
word with us, and oppressed our brethren more 
rigorously even than his predecessor, the remorse- 
less Elizabeth, he is unworthy longer to reign, and 
must be removed." 

" He must," reiterated the conspirators. 

" The Parliament-house being the place where 
all the mischief done us has been contrived by 
our adversaries, it is fitting that it should be the 
place of their chastisement," remarked Catesby. 

" Doubtless," rejoined Ambrose Rookwood. 

" Yet if the blow we meditate should mis- 
carry," observed Thomas Winter, " the injury to 
the Catholic religion will be so great, that not 
only our enemies, but our very friends will con- 
demn us." 

" There is no chance of miscarriage, if we are 
true to each other," returned Catesby confidently. 
" And if I suspected any one of treachery, I would 
plunge my sword into his bosom, were he my 

" You would do wrong to act thus on mere 


suspicion," remarked Tresham, who stood near 

" In a case like this, he who gave the slightest 
ground for doubt would merit death," replied 
Catesby, sternly ; " and I would slay him." 

" Hum !" exclaimed Tresham, uneasily. 

" Mr. Catesby will now perhaps inform us what 
has been done to carry the project into effect?" 
inquired Sir Everard Digby. 

" A small habitation has been taken by one of 
our confederates, Mr. Thomas Percy, immediate- 
ly adjoining the Parliament - house," replied 
Catesby, M from the cellar of which it is proposed 
to dig a mine through the wall of the devoted 
building, and to deposit within it a sufficient 
quantity of gunpowder, and other combustibles 
to accomplish our purpose. This mine must be 
digged by ourselves, as we can employ no as- 
sistants, and will be a laborious and dangerous 
task. But I for one will cheerfully under- 
take it." 

" And I," said the elder Wright. 

" And I," cried several others. 

" Supposing the mine digged, and the powder 


deposited/' observed Ambrose Rookwood, "whose 
hand will fire the train ? " 

" Mine !" cried Guy Fawkes, throwing open 
the door. As soon as he had spoken, he retired 
and closed it after him. 

" He will keep his word," remarked Garnet. 
" He is of a nature so resolute that he would 
destroy himself with the victims rather than fail. 
Catiline was not a bolder conspirator than Guy 

" Well, gentlemen," observed Catesby, " we 
are now at the latter end of July, All must 
be ready against the meeting of Parliament in 

" There is some likelihood, I hear, that the 
meeting of the house will be prorogued till 
February ," remarked Tresham. 

" So much the better," rejoined Catesby, " it 
will give us more time for preparation." 

" So much the worse, I think," cried Ambrose 
Rookwood. " Delays are ever dangerous, and 
doubly dangerous in a case like ours." 

" I am far from desiring to throw any impedi- 
ment in the way of our design," observed Sir 


Everard Digby, " but I would recommend, be- 
fore we proceed to this terrible extremity, that 
one last effort should be made to move the 
King in our behalf." 

" It is useless,"" replied Catesby. " So far 
from toleration, he meditates severer measures 
against us ; and, I am well assured, if Parliament 
is allowed to meet, such laws will be passed 
as will bring all of us within premunire. No, 
no. We have no hope from James, nor his 
ministers. " 

"Nor yet from France or Spain, 1 "' observed 
Thomas Winter. " In my conference with the 
Constable Velasco at Bergen, I received assur- 
ances of the good-will of Philip towards us, 
but no distinct promise of interference in our 
behalf. The Archduke Albert is well disposed, 
but he can render no assistance. We must de- 
pend upon ourselves."" 

" Ay, marry, must we," replied Catesby, " and 
fortunate is it that we have devised a plan by 
which we can accomplish our purpose unaided. 
We only require funds to follow up with effect 
the blow we shall strike." 


" My whole fortune shall be placed at your 
disposal, 11 replied Sir Everard Digby. 

" Part of mine has already been given, 11 said 
Tresham, a and the rest shall follow. 11 

" Would I had aught to peril in the matter 
except my life, 11 said Catesby. " I would throw 
everything upon the stake. 11 

" You do enough in venturing thus much, 
my son, 11 rejoined Garnet. " To you the whole 
conduct of the enterprise is committed. 11 

" I live for nothing else, 11 replied Catesby, 
" and if I see it successful, I shall have lived 
long enough. 11 

" Cannot Sir William Radcliffe be induced 
to join us P 11 asked Rook wood. " He would 
be an important acquisition, and his wealth 
would prove highly serviceable. 11 

" I have sounded him, 11 answered Catesby. 
" But he appears reluctant. 11 

" Be not satisfied with one attempt, 11 urged 
Christopher Wright. " The jeopardy in which 
he now stands may make him change his mind. 11 

" I am loth to interrupt the discussion, 11 re- 
turned Garnet, " but I think we have tarried 

m 5 


here long enough. We will meet again at mid- 
night, when I hope to introduce Sir William 
Radcliffe to you as a confederate. " 

The party then separated, and Garnet went 
in search of the knight. 

Ascertaining that he was in his own chamber, he 
proceeded thither, and found him alone. Entering 
at once upon the subject in hand, Garnet pleaded 
his cause with so much zeal that he at last wrung 
a reluctant consent from the listener. Scarcely 
able to conceal his exultation, he then pro- 
posed to Sir William to adjourn with him to the 
private chapel in the house, where, having taken 
the oath, and received the sacrament upon it, 
he should forthwith be introduced to the con- 
spirators, and the whole particulars of the plot 
revealed to him. To this the knight, with some 
hesitation, agreed. As they traversed a gal- 
lery leading to the chapel, they met Viviana. 
For the first time in his life Radeliffe's gaze 
sank before his daughter, and he would have 
passed her without speaking had she not stopped 


11 Father ! dear father ! " she cried, " I know 
whither you are going — and for what purpose. 
Do not — do not join them." 

Sir William RadclifTe made no reply^ but en- 
deavoured gently to push her aside. 

She would not, however, be repulsed, but 
prostrating herself before him, clasped his knees, 
and besought him not to proceed. 

Making a significant gesture to Sir William, 
Garnet walked forward. 

" Viviana," cried the knight, sternly, "my 
resolution is taken. I command you to retire 
to your chamber." 

So saying, he broke from her, and followed 
Garnet. Clasping her hands to her brow, Vi- 
viana gazed for a moment with a frenzied look 
after him, and then rushed from the gallery. 

On reaching the chapel, Sir William, who 
had been much shaken by this meeting, was 
some minutes in recovering his composure. 
Garnet employed the time in renewing his argu- 
ments, and with so much address that he suc- 
ceeded in quieting the scruples of conscience 


which had been awakened in the knight's breast 
by his daughter's warning. 

" And now, my son," he said, u since you 
have determined to enrol your name in the list of 
those sworn to deliver their church from oppres- 
sion, take this primer in your hand, and kneel 
down before the altar, while I administer the 
oath which is to unite you to us." 

Garnet then advanced towards the altar, and 
Sir William was about to prostrate himself upon 
a cushion beside it, when the door was suddenly 
thrown open, and Guy Fawkes strode into the 

" Hold !" he exclaimed, grasping Radcliffe's 
right arm, and fixing his dark glance upon him ; 
" you shall not take that oath." 

" What mean you ? " cried Garnet, who, as 
well as the knight, was paralysed with astonish- 
ment at this intrusion. " Sir William Radcliffe 
is about to join us." 

" I know it," replied Fawkes ; " but it may 
not be. He has no heart in the business, and 
will lend it no efficient assistance. We are 
better without him, than with him." 



As he spoke, he took the primer from the 
knight's hand, and laid it upon the altar. 

" This conduct is inexplicable," cried Garnet, 
angrily. " You will answer for it to others, as 
well as to me." 

" I will answer for it to all," replied Guy 
Fawkes. " Let Sir William Radcliffe declare 
before me, and before Heaven, that he approves 
the measure, and I am content he should take 
the oath." 

" I cannot belie my conscience by saying so," 
replied the knight, who appeared agitated by con- 
flicting emotions. 

" Yet you have promised to join us," cried 
Garnet, reproachfully. 

" Better break that promise than a solemn 
oath," rejoined Guy Fawkes, sternly. " Sir 
William Radcliffe, there are reasons why you 
should not join this conspiracy. Examine your 
inmost heart, and it will tell you what they 

" I understand you," replied the knight. 

" Get hence," cried Garnet, unable to con- 
trol his indignation, " or I will pronounce 


our Church's most terrible malediction against 

" I shall not shrink from it, father," rejoined 
Fawkes, humbly, but firmly, " seeing I am acting 

u Undeceive yourself, then, at once," returned 
Garnet, " and learn that you are thwarting our 
great and holy purpose." 

" On the contrary," replied Fawkes, " I am 
promoting it, by preventing one from joining it 
who will endanger its success." 

" You are a traitor ! " cried Garnet, furiously. 

" A traitor !" exclaimed Guy Fawkes, his eye 
blazing with fierce lustre, though his voice and 
demeanour were unaltered,—" I, who have been 
warned thrice, — twice by the dead, — and lastly 
by a vision from heaven, yet still remain firm to 
my purpose, — I, who have voluntarily embraced 
the most dangerous and difficult part of the enter- 
prise, — I, who would suffer the utmost extremity 
of torture, rather than utter a word that should 
reveal it, — a traitor ! No, father, I am none. 
If you think so, take this sword and at once put 
an end to your doubts." 


There was something so irresistible in the 
manner of Guy Fawkes, that Garnet remained 

" Do with me what you please," continued 
Fawkes : " but do not compel Sir William 
Radcliffe to join the conspiracy. He will be 
fatal to it." 

" No one shall compel me to join it," replied 
the knight. 

" Perhaps it is better thus," returned Garnet, 
after a pause, during which he was buried in 
reflection. " I will urge you no further, my 
son. But before you depart you must swear 
not to divulge what you have just learnt." 

" Willingly," replied the knight. 

M There is another person who must also 
take that oath," said Guy Fawkes, " having 
accidentally become acquainted with as much as 

And stepping out of the chapel, he imme- 
diately afterwards returned with Viviana 

" You will now understand why I would not 
allow Sir William to join the conspiracy," he 
observed to Garnet. 


" I do," replied the latter, gloomily. 

The oath administered, the knight and his 
daughter quitted the chapel, accompanied by 
Guy Fawkes. Viviana was profuse in her ex- 
pressions of gratitude, nor was her father less 
earnest in his acknowledgments. 

A few hours after this, Sir William Rad- 
cliffe informed Sir Everard Digby that it was 
his intention to depart immediately, and, though 
the latter attempted to dissuade him by repre- 
senting the danger to which he would be exposed, 
he continued inflexible. The announcement 
surprised both Catesby and Garnet, who were 
present when it was made, and added their en- 
treaties to those of Digby — but without effect. 
Catesby's proposal to serve as an escort was 
likewise refused by Sir William," who said he 
had no fears, and when questioned as to his 
destination, he returned an evasive answer. This 
sudden resolution of the knight, coupled with 
his refusal to join the plot, alarmed the conspira- 
tors, and more than one expressed fears of treach- 
ery. Sir Everard Digby, however, was not 
of the number, but asserted that Radcliffe was a 


man of the highest honour, and he would answer 
for his secrecy with his life. 

" Will you answer for that of his daughter ? " 
demanded Tresham. 

" / will," replied Fawkes. 

" To put the matter beyond a doubt," observed 
Catesby, <c I will set out shortly after him, and 
follow him unobserved till he halts for the 
night, and ascertain whether he stops at any 
suspicious quarter." 

" Do so, my son," replied Garnet. 

" It is needless," observed Sir Everard Digby; 
" but do as you please." 

By this time, RadclinVs horses being brought 
round by Heydocke, he and his daughter took 
a hasty leave of their friends. When they had 
been gone a few minutes, Catesby called for 
his steed ; and, after exchanging a word or 
two with Garnet, rode after them. He had 
proceeded about a couple of miles along a cross- 
road leading to Nantwich, which he learnt from 
some cottagers was the route taken by the party 
before him, when he heard the tramp of a horse 
in the rear, and, turning at the sound, beheld 


Guy Fawkes. Drawing in the bridle, he halted 
till the latter came up, and angrily demanded 
on what errand he was bent. 

" My errand is the same as your own," replied 
Fawkes. " I intend to follow Sir William Rad- 
cliffe, and, if need be, defend him." 

Whatever Catesby's objections might be to 
this companionship, he did not think fit to de- 
clare them, and, though evidently much dis- 
pleased, suffered Guy Fawkes to ride by his side 
without opposition. 

Having gained the summit of the mountainous 
range extending from Malpas to Tottenhall, 
whence they beheld the party whose course they 
were tracking enter a narrow lane at the foot 
of the hill, Catesby, fearful of losing sight of 
them, set spurs to his steed. Guy Fawkes kept 
close beside him, and they did not slacken their 
pace until they reached the lane. 

Having proceeded along it for a quarter of 
a mile, they were alarmed by the sudden report 
of fire-arms, followed by a loud shriek, which 
neither of them doubted was uttered by Viviana. 
Again dashing forward, on turning a corner of 


the road, they beheld the party surrounded by 
half-a-dozen troopers. Sir William RadclifFe had 
shot one of his assailants, and, assisted by Hcy- 
docke, was defending himself bravely against 
the others. With loud shouts, Catesby and Guy 
Fawkes galloped towards the scene of strife. 
But they were too late. A bullet pierced the 
knight's brain ; and he no sooner fell, than, 
regardless of himself, the old steward flung away 
his sword, and threw himself, with the most 
piteous lamentations, on the body. 

Viviana, meanwhile, had been compelled to 
dismount, and was in the hands of the troopers. 
On seeing her father's fate, her shrieks were 
so heart-piercing, that even her captors were 
moved to compassion. Fighting his way towards 
her, Catesby cut down one of the troopers, and 
snatching her from the grasp of the other, who 
was terrified by the furious assault, placed her 
on the saddle beside him, and striking spurs into 
his charger at the same moment, leapt the hedge, 
and made good his retreat. 

This daring action, however, could not have 
been accomplished without the assistance of Guy 


Fawkes, who warded off with his rapier all the 
blows aimed at him and his lovely charge. 
While thus engaged, he received a severe cut 
on the head, which stretched him senseless and 
bleeding beneath his horse's feet. 




On recovering from the effects of the wound 
he had received from the trooper, Guy Fawkes 
found himself stretched upon a small bed in a 
cottage, with Viviana and Catesby watching be- 
side him. A thick fold of linen was bandaged 
round his head, and he was so faint from the 
great effusion of blood he had sustained, that, 
after gazing vacantly around him for a few mi- 
nutes, and but imperfectly comprehending what 
he beheld, his eyes closed, and he relapsed into 
insensibility. Restoratives being applied, he re- 
vived in a short time, and, in answer to his 
inquiries as to how he came thither, was 
informed by Catesby that he had been left for 
dead by his assailants, who, contenting them- 
selves with making the old steward prisoner, 
had ridden off in the direction of Chester. 


" What has become of Sir William Rad- 
cliffe ?" asked the wounded man in a feeble 

Catesby raised his finger to his lips, and 
Fawkes learnt the distressing nature of the ques- 
tion he had asked by the agonizing cry that burst 
from Viviana. Unable to control her grief, she 
withdrew, and Catesby then told him that the 
body of Sir William Radcliffe was lying in an 
adjoining cottage, whither it had been trans- 
ported from the scene of the conflict ; adding 
that it was Viviana's earnest desire that it should 
be conveyed to Manchester to the family vault 
in the Collegiate Church ; but that he feared 
her wish could not be safely complied with. 
A messenger, however, had been despatched to 
Holt ; and Sir Everard Digby, and Fathers 
Garnet and Oldcorne, were momentarily expected, 
when some course would be decided upon for the 
disposal of the unfortunate knight's remains. 

"Poor Viviana!" groaned Fawkes. "She 
has now no protector." 

" Rest easy on that score," rejoined Catesby. 
" She shall never want one while I live." 


The wounded man fixed his eyes, now blazing 
with red and unnatural light, inquiringly upon 
him, but he said nothing. 

" I know what you mean," continued Catesby ; 
" you think I shall wed her, and you are in the 
right. I shall. The marriage is essential to 
our enterprise ; and the only obstacle to it is 

Fawkes attempted to reply, but his parched 
tongue refused its office. Catesby arose, and 
carefully raising his head, held a cup of water 
to his lips. The sufferer eagerly drained it, 
and would have asked for more ; but seeing that 
the request would be refused, he left it un- 

" Have you examined my wound?" he said, 
after a pause. 

Catesby answered in the affirmative. 

"And do you judge it mortal?'" continued 
Fawkes. u Not that I have any fear of Death. 
I have looked him in the face too often for that. 
But I have somewhat on my mind which I would 
fain discharge before my earthly pilgrimage is 


" Do not delay it, then," rejoined the other. 
" Knowing I speak to a soldier, and a brave 
one, I do not hesitate to tell you your hours 
are numbered." 

" Heaven's will be done ! " exclaimed Fawkes, 
in a tone of resignation. " I thought myself 
destined to be one of the chief instruments of 
the restoration of our holy religion. But I find 
I was mistaken. When Father Garnet arrives, 
I beseech you let me see him instantly. Or, if 
he should not come speedily, entreat Miss Rad- 
cliffe to grant me a few moments in private." 

" Why not unburthen yourself to me ?" re- 
turned Catesby, distrustfully. " In your cir- 
cumstances I should desire no better confessor 
than a brother soldier, — no other crucifix than 
a sword-hilt." 

" Nor I," rejoined Fawkes. " But this is no 
confession I am about to make. What I have 
to say relates to others, not to myself." 

" Indeed !" exclaimed Catesby. " Then there 
is the more reason why it should not be deferred. 
I hold it my duty to tell you that the fever of 
your w r ound will, in all probability, produce de- 


lirium. Make your communication while your 
senses remain to you. And whatever you enjoin 
shall be rigorously fulfilled. " 

" Will you swear this ?" cried Fawkes, eagerly. 
But before an answer could be returned, he added, 
in an altered tone, " No, — no, — it cannot be." 

" This is no time for anger," rejoined Catesby, 
sternly, " or I should ask whether you doubt the 
assurance I have given you ? " 

" I doubt nothing but your compliance with 
my request," returned Fawkes. " And oh ! if 
you hope to be succoured at your hour of need, 
tell Miss Radcliffe I desire to speak with her." 

" The message will not need to be conveyed," 
said Viviana, who had noiselessly entered the 
room ; " she is here." 

Guy Fawkes turned his gaze in the direction 
of the voice ; and, notwithstanding his own de- 
plorable condition, he was filled with concern at 
the change wrought in her appearance by the 
terrible shock she had undergone. Her counte- 
nance was as pale as death, — her eyes, from 
which no tears would flow, as is ever the case 
with the deepest distress, were glassy and lustre- 

VOL. I. N 


less, — her luxuriant hair hung in dishevelled 
masses over her shoulders, — and her attire was 
soiled and disordered. 

"You desire to speak with me?" she con- 
tinued, advancing towards the couch of the 
wounded man. 

" It must be alone," he replied. 

Viviana glanced at Catesby, who reluctantly 
arose, and closed the door after him. " We are 
alone now," she said. 

" Water ! water ! " gasped the sufferer, " or I 
perish." His request being complied with, he 
continued in a low solemn voice, " Viviana, you 
have lost the dearest friend you had on earth, 
and you will soon lose one who, if he had been 
spared, would have endeavoured, as far as he 
could, to repair the loss. I say not this to 
aggravate your distress, but to prove the sin- 
cerity of my regard. Let me conjure you, with 
my dying breath, not to wed Mr. Catesby." 

" Fear it not," replied Viviana. " I would 
rather endure death than consent to do so." 

" Be upon your guard against him, then," 
continued Fawkes. " When an object is to 


be gained, he suffers few scruples to stand in his 

" I am well aware of it," replied Viviana'; 
" and on the arrival of Sir Everard Digby, I 
shall place myself under his protection." 

" Should you be driven to extremity," said 
Fawkes, taking a small packet from the folds 
of his doublet, " break open this ; it will inform 
you what to do. Only promise me you will not 
have recourse to it till all other means have 

Viviana took the packet, and gave the re- 
quired promise. 

" Conceal it about your person, and guard it 
carefully," continued Fawkes ; " for you know 
not when you may require it. And now, having 
cleared my conscience, I can die easily. Let me 
have your prayers." 

Viviana knelt down by the bedside, and pour- 
ed forth the most earnest supplications in his 

" Perhaps," she said, as she arose, " and it 
is some consolation to think so, — you may be 
saved by death from the commission of a great 


crime, which would for ever have excluded you 
from the joys of heaven." 

" Say rather," cried Guy Fawkes, whose brain 
began to wander, " which would have secured 
them to me. Others will achieve it ; but I shall 
have no share in their glory, or their reward. ,1 

" Their reward will be perdition in this world 
and the next," rejoined Viviana. " I repeat, 
that though I deeply deplore your condition, 
I rejoice in your delivery from this sin. It is 
better — far better — to die thus, than by the 
hands of the common executioner." 

" What do I see ?" cried Guy Fawkes, trying 
to raise himself, and sinking back again instantly 
upon the pillow. " Elizabeth Orton rises before 
me. She beckons me after her — I come ! — 
I come ! " 

u Heaven pity him ! " cried Viviana. " His 
senses have left him !" 

" She leads me into a gloomy cavern," con- 
tinued Fawkes more wildly ; " but my eyes are 
like the wolfs, and can penetrate the darkness. 
It is filled with barrels of gunpowder. I see 
them ranged in tiers, one above another. Ah ! 


I know where I am now. It is the vault be- 
neath the Parliament-house. The King and 
his nobles are assembled in the hall above. 
Lend me a torch, that I may fire the train, and 
blow them into the air. Quick ! quick ! I have 
sworn their destruction, and will keep my oath. 
What matter if I perish with them ? Give me 
the torch, I say, or it will be too late. Is the 
powder damp that it will not kindle ? And see ! 
the torch is expiring — it is gone out ! Distrac- 
tion ! — to be baffled thus ! Why do you stand 
and glare at me with your stony eyes ? Who 
are those with you ? Fiends ! — no ! they are 
armed men. They seize me — they drag me 
before a grave assemblage. What is that hide- 
ous engine ? The rack ! — Bind me on it — 
break every limb — ye shall not force me to 
confess — ha! ha! I laugh at your threats — 
ha ! ha ! " 

" Mother of mercy ! release him from this 
torture ! n cried Viviana. 

"So ! ye have condemned mc, 11 continued 
Fawkes, w and will drag me to execution. Well, 
well, I am prepared. But what a host is as- 


sembled to see me ! Ten thousand faces are 
turned towards me, and all with one abhorrent 
bloodthirsty expression. And what a scaffold ! 
Get it done quickly, thou butcherly villain. The 
rope is twisted round my throat in serpent folds. 
It strangles me — ah V 

"Horror!" exclaimed Viviana. "I can lis- 
ten to this no longer. Help, Mr. Catesby, 

u The knife is at my breast — it pierces my 
flesh — my heart is torn forth — I die ! I die !" 
And he utterred a dreadful groan. 

" What has happened? 1 "' cried Catesby, rush- 
ing into the room. " Is he dead ?" 

" I fear so," replied Viviana ; " and his end 
has been a fearful one. 1 '' 

" No — no, 11 said Catesby ; " his pulse still 
beats — but fiercely and feverishly. You had 
better not remain here longer, Miss Radcliffe. 
I will watch over him. All will soon be over. 11 

Aware that she could be of no further use, 
Viviana cast a look of the deepest commiseration 
at the sufferer, and retired. The occupant of 
the cottage, an elderly female, had surrendered 


all the apartments of her tenement, except one 
small room, to her guests, and she was therefore 
undisturbed. The terrible event which had re- 
cently occurred, and the harrowing scene she had 
just witnessed, were too much for Viviana, and 
her anguish was so intense, that she began to 
fear her reason was deserting her. She stood 
still, — gazed fearfully round, as if some secret 
danger environed her, — clasped her hands to her 
temples, and found them burning like hot iron, — 
and, then, alarmed at her own state, knelt down, 
prayed, and wept. Yes ! she wept, for the first 
time, since her father's destruction, and the re- 
lief afforded by those scalding tears was inex- 

From this piteous state she was aroused by 
the tramp of horses at the door of the cottage, 
and the next moment Father Garnet presented 

" How uncertain are human affairs ! " he said, 
after a sorrowful greeting had passed between 
them. " I little thought, when we parted yes- 
terday, we should meet again so soon, and under 
such afflicting circumstances. " 


" It is the will of Heaven, father," replied 
Viviana, " and we must not murmur at its de- 
crees, but bear our chastening as we best may." 

"I am happy to find you in such a com- 
fortable frame of mind, dear daughter. I feared 
the effect of the shock upon your feelings. But 
I am glad to find you bear up against it so well. ,, 

"I am surprised at my own firmness, father," 
replied Viviana. " But I have been schooled 
in affliction. I have no tie left to bind me to 
the world, and shall retire from it, not only with- 
out regret, but with eagerness." 

" Say not so, dear daughter," replied Garnet. 
" You have, I trust, much happiness in store 
for you. And when the sharpness of your afflic- 
tion is worn off, you will view your condition 
in a more cheering light." 

" Impossible !" she cried, mournfully. "Hope 
is wholly extinct in my breast. But I will not 
contest the point. Is not Sir Everard Digby 
with you ? " 

" He is not, daughter," replied Garnet, " and 
I will explain to you wherefore. Soon after your 
departure yesterday, the mansion we occupied at 


Holt was attacked by a band of soldiers, headed 
by Miles Topcliffe, one of the most unrelenting 
of our persecutors ; and though they were driven 
off with some loss, yet, as there was every 
reason to apprehend they would return with fresh 
force, Sir Everard judged it prudent to retreat; 
and accordingly he and his friends, with all their 
attendants, except those he has sent with me, 
have departed for Buckinghamshire." 

" Where, then, is Father Oldcorne ?" in- 
quired Viviana. 

" Alas ! daughter," rejoined Garnet, " I grieve 
to say he is a prisoner. Imprudently exposing 
himself during the attack, he was seized and 
carried off by Topcliffe and his myrmidons. 1 " 

" How true is the saying, that misfortunes 
never come single ! " sighed Viviana. " I seem 
bereft of all I hold dear. 11 

" Sir Everard has sent four of his trustiest 
servants with me, 11 remarked Garnet. " They 
are well armed, and will attend you wherever 
you choose to lead them. He has also furnished 
me with a sum of money for your use." 

u He is most kind and considerate,' 1 replied 


Viviana. " And now, father," she faltered, 
" there is one subject which it is necessary to 
speak upon ; and, though I shrink from it, it 
must not be postponed." 

" I guess what you mean, daughter," said Gar- 
net, sympathizingly ; u you allude to the inter- 
ment of Sir William Radcliffe. Is the body 

" It is in an adjoining cottage," replied Vi- 
viana, in a broken voice. " I have already ex- 
pressed my wish to Mr. Catesby to have it con- 
veyed to Manchester, to our family vault." 

" I see not how that can be accomplished, 
dear daughter," replied Garnet ; " but I will 
confer with Mr. Catesby on the subject. Where 
is he ? " 

" In the next room by the couch of Guy 
Fawkes, who is dying," said Viviana. 

" Dying ! " echoed Garnet, starting. " I 
heard he was dangerously hurt, but did not sup- 
pose the wound would prove fatal. Here is 
another grievous blow to the good cause." 

At this moment the door was opened by 


" How is the sufferer ?" asked Garnet. 

"A slight change for the better appears to 
have taken place," answered Catesby. " His 
fever has in some degree abated, and he has sunk 
into a gentle slumber." 

" Can he be removed with safety ?" inquired 
Garnet ; " for, I fear, if he remains here he will 
fall into the hands of Topcliffe and his crew, 
who are scouring the country in every direction." 
And he recapitulated all he had just stated to 

Catesby was for some time lost in reflec- 

"Iara fairly perplexed as to what course it 
will be best to pursue," he said. i6 Dangers and 
difficulties beset us on every side. I am in- 
clined to yield to Viviana's request, and pro- 
ceed to Manchester." 

" That will be rushing into the very face of 
danger," observed Garnet. 

" And, therefore, may be the safest plan," 
replied Catesby. u Our adversaries will scarcely 
suspect us of so desperate a step." 

" Perhaps you are in the right, my son, v 


returned Garnet, after a moment's reflection. 
" At all events, I bow to your judgment." 

" The plan is too much in accordance with 
my own wishes to meet with any opposition on 
my part," observed Viviana. 

" Will you accompany us, father?" asked 
Catesby ; "or do you proceed to Gothurst ?" 

" I will go with you, my son. Viviana will 
need a protector. And, till I have seen her 
in some place of safety, I will not leave her." 

" Since we have come to this determination," 
rejoined Catesby, " as soon as the needful pre- 
parations can be made, and Guy Fawkes has 
had some hours'' repose, we will set out. Un- 
der cover of night we can travel with security; 
and, by using some exertion, may reach Ordsall 
Hall, whither, I presume, Viviana would choose 
to proceed, in the first instance, before daybreak." 

" I am well mounted, and so are my atten- 
dants," replied Garnet ; " and, by the provident 
care of Sir Everard Digby, each of them has 
a led horse with him." 

" That is well," said Catesby. " And now, 
Viviana, may I entreat you to take my place 


for a short time by the coucli of the sufferer. 
Jn a few hours everything shall be in readiness." 

He then retired with Garnet, while Viviana 
proceeded to the adjoining chamber, where she 
found Guy Fawkes still slumbering tranquilly. 

As the evening advanced, he awoke, and 
appeared much refreshed. While he was speak- 
ing, Garnet and Catesby approached his bedside, 
and he seemed overjoyed at the sight of the 
former. The subject of the journey being 
mentioned to him, he at once expressed his 
ready compliance with the arrangement, and only 
desired that the last rites of his church might be 
performed for him before he set out. 

Garnet informed him that he came for that 
very purpose ; and as soon as they were left 
alone, he proceeded to the discharge of his 
priestly duties, confessed and absolved him, 
giving him the viaticum and the extreme unction. 
And, lastly, he judged it expedient to administer 
a powerful opiate, to lull the pain of his wound 
on the journey. 

This done, he summoned Catesby, who, with 
two of the attendants, raised the couch on which 


the wounded man was stretched, and conveyed 
him to the litter. So well was this managed, 
that Fawkes sustained no injury, and little 
inconvenience, from the movement. Two strong 
country vehicles had been procured ; the one 
containing the wounded man's litter, the other 
the shell, which had been hastily put together, to 
hold the remains of the unfortunate Sir William 
Radcliffe. Viviana being placed in the saddle, 
and Catesby having liberally rewarded the cot- 
tagers who had afforded them shelter, the little 
cavalcade was put in motion. In this way 
they journeyed through the night; and shaping 
their course through Tarporley, Northwich. 
and Altringham, arrived at daybreak in the 
neighbourhood of Ordsall Halh 




On beholding the well-remenibered roof and 
gables of the old mansion peeping from out 
the grove of trees in which it was embosomed, 
Viviana's heart died away within her. The 
thought that her father, who had so recently 
quitted it in the full enjoyment of health, and 
of every worldly blessing, should be so soon 
brought back a corpse, was almost too agonizing 
for endurance. Reflecting, however, that this 
was no season for the indulgence of grief, but 
that she was called upon to act with firmness, 
she bore up resolutely against her emotion. 

Arrived within a short distance of the Hall, 
Catesby caused the little train to halt under the 
shelter of the trees, while he rode forward to 


ascertain that they could safely approach it. As 
he drew near, everything proclaimed that the 
hand of the spoiler had been there. Crossing 
the drawbridge, he entered the court, which bore 
abundant marks of the devastation recently com- 
mitted. Various articles of furniture, broken, 
burnt, or otherwise destroyed, were lying scatter- 
ed about. The glass in the windows was shi- 
vered ; the doors forced from their hinges ; the 
stone-copings of the walls pushed off; the flower- 
beds trampled upon ; the moat itself was in some 
places choked up with rubbish, while in others 
its surface was covered with floating pieces of 

Led by curiosity, Catesby proceeded to the 
spot where the stables had stood. Nothing but 
a heap of blackened ruins met his gaze. Scarcely 
one stone was standing on another. The ap- 
pearance of the place was so desolate and dis- 
heartening, that he turned away instantly. Leaving 
his horse in a shed, he entered the house. Here, 
again, he encountered fresh ravages. The oak- 
panels and skirting-boards were torn from the 
walls ; the ceilings pulled down ; and the floor 


lay inch-deep in broken plaster and dust. On 
ascending to the upper rooms, he found the same 
disorder. The banisters of the stairs were 
broken ; the bedsteads destroyed ; the roof par- 
tially untiled. Every room was thickly strewn 
with leaves torn from valuable books, with frag- 
ments of apparel, and other articles, which the 
searchers not being able to carry off had wan- 
tonly destroyed. 

Having contemplated this scene of havoc for 
some time, with feelings of the bitterest indig- 
nation, Catesby descended to the lowest story ; 
and, after searching ineffectually for the domes- 
tics, was about to depart, when, turning suddenly, 
he perceived a man watching him from an adjoin- 
ing room. Catesby instantly called to him ; 
but, seeing that the fellow disregarded his assur- 
ances, and was about to take to his heels, he 
drew his sword, and threatened him with severe 
punishment if he attempted to fly. Thus ex- 
horted, the man — who was no other than the 
younger Heydocke — advanced tow r ards him ; and 
throwing himself at his feet, begged him in the 
most piteous terms to do him no injury. 


" I have already told you I am a friend, 1 ' re- 
plied Catesby, sheathing his sword. 

" Ah ! Mr. Catesby, is it you I behold ? * 
cried Martin Heydocke, whose fears had hitherto 
prevented him from noticing the features of the 
intruder. " What brings your worship to this 
ill-fated house ?" 

" First let me know if there is any enemy 
about ?" replied Catesby. 

" None that I am aware of," rejoined Martin. 
" Having ransacked the premises, and done all 
the mischief they could, as you perceive, the 
miscreants departed the day before yesterday, and 
I have seen nothing of them since, though I have 
been constantly on the watch. The only alarm 
I have had was that occasioned by your worship 
just now. ,, 

" Are you alone here ? " demanded Catesby. 

" No, your worship," answered Martin. 
" There are several of the servants concealed in 
a secret passage under the house. But they are 
so terrified by what has lately happened, that 
they never dare show themselves, except during 
the night- time." 

" I do not wonder at it," replied Catesby. 


" And now may I inquire whether your wor- 
ship brings any tidings of Sir William Radcliffe 
and Mistress Viviana?" rejoined Martin. "I 
hope no ill has befallen them. My father, old 
Jerome Heydocke, set out to Holywell a few 
days ago, to apprise them of their danger, and I 
have not heard of them since." 

" Sir William Radcliffe is dead," replied 
Catesby. " The villains have murdered him. 
Your father is a prisoner." 

" Alas ! alas !" cried the young man, bursting 
into tears ; " these are fearful times to live in. 
What will become of us all ? " 

" We must rise against the oppressor," replied 
Catesby sternly. " Bite the heel that tramples 
upon us." 

" We must," rejoined Martin. " And if my 
poor arm could avail, it should not be slow to 

''Manfully resolved!" cried Catesby, who 
never lost an opportunity of gaining a proselyte. 
" I will point out to you a way by which you 
may accomplish what you desire. But we will 
talk of this hereafter. Hoard up your vengeance 
till the fitting moment for action arrives." 


He then proceeded to explain to the young 
man, who was greatly surprised by the intelli- 
gence, that Viviana was at hand, and that the 
body of Sir William had been brought thither 
for interment in the family vault at the Collegiate 
Church. Having ascertained that there was a 
chamber, which, having suffered less than the 
others, might serve for Viviana's accommodation, 
Catesby returned to the party. 

A more melancholy cavalcade has been seldom 
seen than now approached the gates of Ordsall 
Hall. First rode Viviana, in an agony of tears, 
for her grief had by this time become absolutely 
uncontrolable, with Catesby on foot, leading her 
horse. Next came Garnet, greatly exhausted 
and depressed ; his eyes cast dejectedly on the 
ground. Then came the litter, containing Guy 
Fawkes ; and, lastly, the vehicle with the body 
of Sir William Radcliffe. On arriving at the 
gate, Viviana was met by two female servants, 
whom Martin Heydocke had summoned from 
their hiding-places ; and, as soon as she had dis- 
mounted, she was supported, for she was scarcely 
able to walk unaided, to the chamber destined for 


her reception. This done, Catesby proceeded, 
with some anxiety, to superintend the removal of 
Fawkes, who was perfectly insensible. His 
wound had bled considerably during the journey ; 
but the effusion had stopped, when the faintness 
supervened. He was placed in one of the lower 
rooms till a sleeping-chamber could be prepared 
for him. The last task was to attend to the re- 
mains of the late unfortunate possessor of the 
mansion. By Catesby's directions a large oak 
table, once occupying the great hall, was removed 
to the Star Chamber, already described as the 
principal room of the house ; and, being securely 
propped up, — for, like the rest of the furniture, 
it had been much damaged by the spoilers, 
though, being of substantial material, it offered 
greater resistance to their efforts, — the shell con- 
taining the body was placed upon it. 

" Better he should lie thus,'" exclaimed Catesby, 
when the melancholy office was completed, 
" than live to witness the wreck around him. 
Fatal as are these occurrences," he added, pur- 
suing the train of thought suggested by the scene, 
" they are yet favourable to my purpose. The 


only person who could have prevented my union 
with Viviana RadclifTe — her father — lies there. 
Who would have thought when she rejected my 
proposal a few days ago, in this very room, how 
fortune would conspire — and by what dark and 
inscrutable means — to bring it about ! Fallen 
as it is, this house is not yet fallen so low, but I 
can reinstate it. Its young mistress mine, her 
estates mine, — for she is now inheritress of all 
her father's possessions, — the utmost reach of 
my ambition were gained, and all but one object 
of my life — for which I have dared so much, and 
struggled so long — achieved ! " 

" What are you thinking of, my son ?" asked 
Garnet, who had watched the changing expres- 
sion of his sombre countenance, — " what are you 
thinking of?" he said, tapping him on the 

64 Of that which is never absent from my 
thoughts, father — the great design," replied 
Catesby ; " and of the means of its accomplish- 
ment, which this sad scene suggests." 

" I do not understand you, my son," rejoined 
the other. 


" Does not Radcliffe's blood cry aloud for 
vengeance ? n continued Catesby ; " and, think 
you liis child will be deaf to the cry ? No, 
father, she will no longer tamely submit to 
wrongs that would steel the gentlest bosom, and 
make firm the feeblest arm, but will go hand and 
heart with us in our project. Viviana must be 
mine," he added, altering his tone, " ours, I 
should say, — for, if she is mine, all the vast pos- 
sessions that have accrued to her by her father's 
death shall be devoted to the furtherance of the 
mighty enterprise." 

" I cannot think she will refuse you now, my 
son," replied Garnet. 

" She shall not refuse me, father," rejoined 
Catesby. " The time is gone by for idle wooing." 

" I will be no party to forcible measures, my 
son," returned Garnet, gravely. "As far as per- 
suasion goes, I will lend you every assistance in 
my power, but nothing further." 

" Persuasion is all that will be required, I am 
assured, father," answered Catesby, hastily, per- 
ceiving he had committed himself too far. " But 
let us now see what can be done- for Guy 


" Would there was any hope of his life ! " 
exclaimed Garnet, sighing deeply. " In losing 
him, we lose the bravest of our band. 11 

" We do," returned Catesby. "And yet he 
has been subject to strange fancies of late." 

" He has been appalled, but never shaken, 11 
rejoined Garnet. " Of all our number, you 
and he were the only two upon whom I could 
rely. When he is gone, you will stand alone." 

Catesby made no reply, but led the way to 
the chamber where the wounded man lay. He 
had regained his consciousness, but was too feeble 
to speak. After such restoratives as were at 
hand had been administered, Catesby was about 
to order a room to be fitted up for him, when 
Viviana, whose anxiety for the sufferer had over- 
come her affliction, made her appearance. On 
learning Catesby's intentions, she insisted upon 
Fawkes being removed to the room allotted to 
her, which had not been dismantled like the rest. 
Seeing it was in vain to oppose her, Catesby 
assented, and the sufferer was accordingly carried 
thither, and placed within the bed — a large an- 
tique piece of furniture, hung with faded damask 


curtains. The room was one of the oldest in the 
house, and at the further end stood a small 
closet, approached by an arched doorway, and 
fitted up with a hassock and crucifix, which, 
strange to say, had escaped the ravages of the 

Placed within the couch, Guy Fawkes began 
to ramble as before about the conspiracy ; and 
fearing his ravings might awaken the suspicion 
of the servants, Catesby would not suffer any of 
them to come near him, but arranged with Gar- 
net to keep watch over him by turns. By de- 
grees, he became more composed ; and, after 
dozing a little, opened his eyes, and, looking 
round, inquired anxiously for his sword. At 
first, Catesby, who was alone with him at the 
time, hesitated in his answer, but seeing he ap- 
peared greatly disturbed, he showed him that his 
hat, gauntlets, and rapier were lying by the bedside. 

"I am content," replied the wounded man, 
smiling faintly ; " that sword has never left my 
side, waking or sleeping, for twenty years. Let 
me grasp it once more — perhaps for the last 

VOL. I. 


Catesby handed him the weapon. He looked 
at it for a few moments, and pressed the blade to 
his lips. 

" Farewell, old friend ! " he said, a tear ga- 
thering in his eye, " farewell ! Catesby," he 
added, as he resigned the weapon to him, cc I 
have one request to make. Let my sword be 
buried with me." 

" It shall," replied Catesby, in a voice suffo- 
cated by emotion, for the request touched him 
where his stern nature was most accessible : " I 
will place it by you myself." 

" Thanks ! " exclaimed Fawkes. And soon 
after this, he again fell into a slumber. 

His sleep endured for some hours ; but his 
breathing grew fainter and fainter, so that at the 
last it was scarcely perceptible. A striking change 
had likewise taken place in his countenance, and 
these signs convinced Catesby he had not long to 
live. While he was watching him with great 
anxiety, Viviana appeared at the door of the 
chamber, and beckoned him out. Noiselessly 
obeying the summons, and following her along 
the gallery, he entered a room where he found 


" I have called you to say that a remedy has 
been suggested to me by Martin Heydockc," ob- 
served Viviana, " by -which I trust Guy Fawkes 
may yet be saved." 

" How ?" asked Catesby, eagerly. 

" Doctor Dee, the warden of Manchester, of 
whom you must have heard," she continued, " is 
said to possess an elixir of such virtue, that a few 
drops of it will snatch him who drinks them from 
the very jaws of death." 

" I should not have suspected you of so much 
credulity, Viviana," replied Catesby : " but grant 
that Doctor Dee possesses this marvellous elixir — 
which for my own part I doubt — how are we to 
obtain it ? " 

" If you will repair to the college, and see him, 
I doubt not he will give it you," rejoined Viviana. 

Catesby smiled incredulously. 

" I have a claim upon Doctor Dee," she per- 
sisted, " which I have never enforced. I will 
now use it. Show him this token," she conti- 
nued, detaching a small ornament from her neck ; 
" tell him you bring it from me, and I am sure 
he will comply with your request." 


" Your commands shall be obeyed, Viviana," 
replied Catesby ; " but I frankly confess I have 
no faith in the remedy." 

" It is at least worth the trial, my son," ob- 
served Garnet. " Doctor .Dee is a wonderful 
person, and has made many discoveries in medi- 
cine, as in other sciences, and this marvellous 
specific may, for aught we know, turn out no im- 

66 If such is your opinion," replied Catesby, 
" I will set out at once. If it is to be tried at 
all, it must be without delay. The poor sufferer 
is sinking fast." 

" Go then," cried Viviana, " and heaven 
speed your mission ! If you could prevail upon 
Doctor Dee to visit the wounded man in person, 
I should prefer it. Besides, I have another re- 
quest to make of him — but that will do hereafter. 
Lose not a moment now." 

" I will fly on the wings of the wind," replied 
Catesby. " Heaven grant that when I return 
the object of our solicitude may not be past all 
human aid ! " 

With this, he hurried to an out-building in 


which the horses were placed, and choosing the 
strongest and fleetest from out their number, 
mounted, and started at fall gallop in the direc- 
tion of Manchester; nor did he relax his speed 
until he reached the gates of the ancient College. 
Hanging the bridle of his smoking steed to a 
hook in the wall, he crossed the large quadran- 
gular court ; and finding the principal entrance 
open, passed the lofty room now used as the re- 
fectory, ascended the flight of stone stairs that 
conducts the modern visiter to the library, and 
was traversing the long galleries communicating 
with it, and now crowded with the learning of 
ages, bequeathed by the benevolence of his rival, 
Humphrey Chetham, when he encountered a 
grave but crafty-looking personage, in a loose 
brown robe and Polish cap, who angrily de- 
manded his business. 

Apologizing for the intrusion, Catesby was 
about to explain, when a small oak door near 
them was partly opened, and an authoritative 
voice, from within, exclaimed, " Do not hinder 
him, Kelley. I know his business, and will sec 


The seer made no further remark, but point- 
ing to the door, Catesby at once comprehended 
that it was Dee's voice he had heard; and, 
though somewhat startled by the intimation that 
he was expected, entered the room. He found 
the Doctor surrounded by his magical apparatus, 
and slowly returning to the chair he had just 

Without looking behind him to see whom 
he addressed, Dee continued, " I have just con- 
sulted my show-stone, and know why you are 
come hither. You bring a token from Viviana 

u I do," replied Catesby, in increased astonish- 
ment. " It is here." 

" It is needless to produce it," replied Dee, 
still keeping his back towards him. " I have 
seen it already. Kelley," he continued, " I am 
about to set out for Ordsall Hall immediately. 
You must accompany me." 

" Amazement ! " cried Catesby. " Is the 
purpose of my visit then really known to your 
reverence ?" 

" You shall hear/' rejoined Dee, facing him. 


" You have a friend who is at the point of 
death, and having heard that I possess an elixir 
of wonderful efficacy, are come in quest of it. 11 

" True," replied Catesby, utterly confounded. 

" The name of that friend," pursued Dee, 
regarding him fixedly, " is Guy Fawkes, — your 
own, Robert Catesby.'" 

" I need no more to convince me, reverend 
sir," rejoined Catesby, trembling, in spite of 
himself, " that all I have heard of your wonderful 
powers falls far short of the truth." 

" You are but just in time," replied Dee, 
bowing gravely, in acknowledgment of the com- 
pliment. " Another hour, and it would have 
been too late." 

"Then you think he will live!" cried 
Catesby, eagerly. 

" I am sure of it," replied Dee, " provided — " 

" Provided what ?" interrupted Catesby. " Is 
there aught I can do to ensure his recovery?" 

" No," replied Dee, sternly. " I am de- 
bating within myself whether it is worth while 
reviving him for a more dreadful fate." 

"What mean you, reverend sir?" asked 


Catesby, a shade passing over his counte- 

" You understand my meaning, and therefore 
need no explanation," replied Dee. *' Return 
to Ordsall Hall, and tell Miss Radcliffe I will 
be there in an hour. Bid her have no further 
fear. If the wounded man breathes when I 
arrive, I will undertake to cure him. Add 
further, that I know the other request she desires 
to make of me, and that it is granted before it 
is asked. Farewell, sir, for a short time.'? 

On reaching the court, Catesby expanded his 
chest, shook his limbs, and exclaimed, " At 
length, I breathe freely. The atmosphere of 
that infernal chamber smelt so horribly of sul- 
phur that it almost stifled me. Well, if Doctor 
Dee has not dealings with the devil, man never 
had ! However, if he cures Guy Fawkes, I care 
not whence the medicine comes from." 

As he descended Smithy Bank, and was about 
to cross the old bridge over the Irwell, he per- 
ceived a man riding before him, who seemed 
anxious to avoid him. Struck by this person's 
manner, he urged his horse into a quicker pace, 


and being the better mounted of the two, soon 
overtook him, when to his surprise he found it 
was Martin Heydocke. 

" What are you doing here, sirrah?" he de- 

4i I have been sent by Mistress Viviana with 
a message to Mr. Humphrey Chetham," replied 
the young man, in great confusion. 

" Indeed ! " exclaimed Catesby, angrily. 
" And how dared you convey a message to him, 
without consulting me on the subject?" 

" I was not aware you were my master," re- 
plied Martin, sulkily. " If I owe obedience 
to any one, it is to Mr. Chetham, whose servant 
I am. But if Mistress Viviana gives me a mes- 
sage to deliver, I will execute her commands, 
whoever may be pleased, or displeased." 

" I did but jest, thou saucy knave," returned 
Catesby, who did not desire to offend him. 
" Here is a piece of money for thee. Now, if 
it be no secret, what was Miss RadclifiVs mes- 
sage to thy master ? " 

" I know not what her letter contained," 
replied Martin; "but his answer was, that he 
would come to the hall at midnight." 


" It is well I ascertained this," thought 
Catesby, and he added aloud, " I understood 
your master had been arrested and impri- 

" So he was," replied Martin; "but he had 
interest enough with the Commissioners to pro- 
cure his liberation." 

" Enough," replied Catesby ; and striking 
spurs into his charger, he dashed off. 

A quarter of an hour's hard riding brought 
him to the hall, and, on arriving there, he pro- 
ceeded at once to the wounded man's chamber, 
where he found Viviana and Garnet. 

" Have you succeeded in your errand ? " cried 
the former, eagerly. " Will Doctor Dee come, 
or has he sent the elixir ? " 

"He will bring it himself," replied Catesby. 

Viviana uttered an exclamation of joy, and 
the sound appeared to reach the ears of the 
sufferer, for he stirred, and groaned faintly. 

" Doctor Dee desired me to tell you," con- 
tinued Catesby, drawing Viviana aside, and 
speaking in a low tone, " that your other request 
was granted." 


Viviana looked surprised, and as if she did not 
clearly understand him. 

" Might he not refer to Humphrey Che- 
tham ? " remarked Catesby, somewhat malici- 

" Ah ! you have learnt from Martin Hey- 
docke that I have written to him," returned 
Viviana, blushing deeply. " What I was about 
to ask of Doctor Dee had no reference to 
Humphrey Chetham. It was to request permis- 
sion to privately inter my father's remains in 
our family vault in the Collegiate Church. 
But how did he know I had any request to 
make ? " 

" That passes my comprehension," replied 
Catesby, " unless he obtained his information 
from his familiar spirits." 

Shortly after this, Doctor Dee and Kelley 
arrived at the hall. Catesby met them at the 
gate, and conducted them to the wounded man's 
chamber. Coldly saluting Garnet, whom he 
eyed with suspicion, and bowing respectfully to 
Viviana, the Doctor slowly advanced to the bed- 
side. He gazed for a short time at the wounded 


man, and folded his arms thoughtfully upon his 
breast. The eyes of the sufferer were closed, 
and his lips slightly apart, but no breath seemed 
to issue from them. His bronzed complexion 
had assumed the ghastly hue of death, and his 
strongly-marked features had become fixed and 
rigid. His black hair, stiffened and caked with 
blood, escaped from the bandages around his 
head, and hung in elf-locks on the pillow. It 
was a piteous spectacle ; and Doctor Dee ap- 
peared much moved by it. 

" The worst is over," he muttered : " why 
recall the spirit to its wretched tenement ? " 

" If you can save him, reverend sir, do not 
hesitate," implored Viviana. 

"I am come hither for that purpose," re- 
plied Dee ; " but I must have no other witness 
to the experiment except yourself, and my at- 
tendant Kelley." 

"I do not desire to be present, reverend 
sir," replied Viviana ; " but I will retire into 
that closet, and pray that your remedy may 

" My prayers for the same end shall be of- 




fered in the adjoining room," observed Garnet ; 
and taking Catesby's arm, who seemed spell- 
bound by curiosity, he dragged him away. 

The door closed, and Viviana withdrew into 
the closet, where she knelt down before the 
crucifix, Doctor Dee seated himself on the bed- 
side ; and taking a gourd-shaped bottle, filled 
with a clear sparkling liquid, from beneath his 
robe, he raised it to his eyes with his left hand, 
while he placed his right on the wrist of the 
wounded man. In this attitude he continued 
for a few seconds, while Kelley, with his arms 
folded, likewise kept his gaze fixed on the phial. 
At the expiration of that time, Dee, who had 
apparently counted the pulsations of the sufferer, 
took out the glass stopper from the bottle, the 
contents of which diffused a pungent odour 
around ; and wetting a small piece of linen 
with it, applied it to his temples. He then 
desired Kelley to raise his head, and poured 
a few drops down his throat. This done, he 
waited a few minntes, and repeated the appli- 

w J ™i : ! » l ie cried t0 Kelley. « The elixir 


already begins to operate. His chest heaves. 
His limbs shiver. That flush upon the cheek, 
and that dampness on the brow, denote that 
the animal heat is restored. A third draught 
will accomplish the cure." 

" I can already feel his heart palpitate," ob- 
served Kelley, placing his hand on the patient's 

" Heaven be praised ! " ejaculated Viviana, 
who had suspended her devotions to listen. 

" Hold him tightly," cried Dee to his as- 
sistant, " while I administer the last draught. 
He may injure himself by his struggles.'" 

Kelley obeyed, and twined his arms tightly 
round the wounded man. And, fortunate it was 
that the precaution was taken ; for, the elixir 
was no sooner poured down his throat than his 
chest began to labour violently, his eyes opened ; 
and, raising himself bolt-upright, he struggled 
violently to break from the hold imposed upon 
him. This he would have effected, if Dee had 
not likewise lent his aid to prevent him. 

" This is, indeed, a wonderful sight !" cried 
Viviana, who had quitted the closet, and nou 


gazed on, in awe and astonishment. " I can 
never be sufficiently thankful to you, reverend 
sir. 11 

c< Give thanks to Him to whom alone they 
are due, 11 replied Dee. " Summon your friends. 
They may now resume their posts. My task 
is accomplished." 

Catesby and Garnet being called into the 
room, could scarcely credit their senses when 
they beheld Guy Fawkes, who by this time 
had ceased struggling, reclining on Kelley's 
shoulder, and, except a certain wildness in the 
eye, and cadaverousness of hue, looking as he 
was wont to do. 



Bangor House, Shoe Lane. 


- ^V^^ 





m\ « 

J# Mi 


; -} 

\ - 1