Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter IV / The Story of the Maid of Bogota >> Page 46

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Page 46

Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription 46 SOUTHWARD 110!
habitual caution and docility to keep terms with the tyranny at
which they yet trembled. When, in the warmth of his enthu-
siasm, Bolivar depicted the bloody struggles which must precede
their deliverance, they began, indeed, to wonder among them-
selves how they ever came to fall into that mischievous philos-
ophy of patriotism which had involved them with such a restless
rebel as Bolivar ! Others of the company were ancient hidal-
gos, who had been men of spirit in their day, but who had sur-
vived the season of enterprise, which is that period only when
the heart swells and overflows with full tides of warm and
impetuous blood.
Your error," said he, in a whisper to Senor Don Joachim
de Zalabariata, was in not bringing young men into your
counsels."" We shall have them hereafter," was the reply, also in a
whisper.
" We shall see," muttered the Liberator, who continued,
though in silence, to scan the assembly with inquisitive eyes, and
an excitement of soul, which increased duly with his efforts to
subdue it. He had found some allies in the circle´┐Żsome few
generous spirits, who, responding to his desires, were anxious to
be up and doing. But it was only too apparent that the main
body of the company had been rather disquieted than warmed.
In this condition of hopeless and speechless indecision, the emo-
tions of the Liberator became scarcely controllable. His whole
frame trembled with the anxiety and indignation of his spirit.
He paced the room hurriedly, passing from group to group,
appealing to individuals now, where hitherto he had spoken col-
lectively, and suggesting detailed arguments in behalf of hopes
and objects, which it does not need that we should incorporate
with our narrative. But when he found how feeble was the
influence which he exercised, and how cold was the echo to his
appeal, he became impatient, and no longer strove to modify the
expression of that scorn and indignation which he had for some
time felt. The explosion followed in no measured language.
"Men of Bogota, you are not worthy to be free. Your chains
are merited. You deserve your insecurities, and may embrace,
even as ye please, the fates which lie before you. Acquiesce
in the tyranny which offends no longer, but be sure that acqui-