Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter IV / The Story of the Maid of Bogota >> Page 55

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Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription DETECTION AND DOOM. 55
this discovery. Her soul seemed to rise rather into an unusual
degree of serenity and strength. She encouraged her friends
with smiles and the sweetest seeming indifference, though she
well knew that her doom was certainly at band. She had her
consolations even under this conviction. Her father was in safety
in the camp of Bolivar. With her counsel and assistance he
would save much of his property from the wreck of confiscation.
The plot had ripened in her hands almost to maturity, and, be-
fore very long, Bogota itself would speak for liberty in a formi-
dable pronunciamento. And this was mostly her work ! What
more was clone, by her agency and influence, may be readily
conjectured from what has been already written. Enough, that
she herself felt that in leaving life she left it when there was
little more left for her to do.
La Iola was hurried from the tertulia before a military court
--martial law then prevailing in the capital�with a rapidity
corresponding with the supposed enormity of her offences. It
was her chief pang that she was not hurried there alone. We
have not hitherto mentioned that she had a lover, one Juan de
Sylva Gomero, to whom she was affianced � a worthy and noble
youth, who entertained for her the most passionate attachment.
It is a somewhat curious fact that she kept him wholly from
any knowledge of her political alliances ; and never was man
more indignant than he when she was arrested, or more con-
founded when the proofs of her guilt were drawn from her per-
son. His offence consisted in his resistance to the authorities
who seized her. There was not the slightest reason to suppose
that lie knew or participated at all in her intimacy with the pa-
triots and Bolivar. He was tried along with her, and both con-
demned�for at this time condemnation and trial were words
of synonymous import to be shot. A respite of twelve hours
from execution was granted them for the purposes of confession.
Zamano, the viceroy, anxious for other victims, spared no means
to procure a full revelation of all the secrets of our heroine. The
priest who waited upon her was the one who attended on the
viceroy himself. He held out. lures of pardon for both, here
and hereafter, upon the one condition only of a full declaration
of her secrets and accomplices. Well might the leading people
of Bogota tremble all the while. But she was firm in her re-