Wlliam Gilmore Simms
Southward Ho! A Spell of Sunshine >> Chapter XII / The Picture of Judgment; Or, The Grotta Del Tifone >> Page 226

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Novel (Romance) | Redfield | 1854
Transcription 226 SOUTHWARD HO CHAPTER II.
TILE time had passed when Etruria gave laws to the rest of
Italy. Lars Porsemm was already in his grave, and his mem-
ory, rather than his genius and spirit, satisfied the Etruscan.
The progeny of the She Wolf* had risen into wondrous strength
and power, and so far from shrinking within their walls at the
approach of the vulture of Volterra, they had succeeded in clip-
ping her wings, and shortening, if not wholly arresting her flight.
'The city of the Seven Hills, looking with triumph from her emi-
nences, began to claim all with In her scope of vision as her own.
Paralyzed at her audacity, her success, and her wonderful
genius for all the arts of war, the neighboring cities began to
tremble at the assertion of her claims. But the braver and less
prudent spirits of young Etruria revolted at this assumption, and
new wars followed, which were too fierce and bloody to continue
long. It needs not that we should describe the varying fortunes
of the parties. Enough for our purposes that, after one well-
fought field, in which the Romans triumphed, they bore away,
as a prisoner, with many others, O lius, the youthful Lucumo
of the Pomponian family. This young man, not yet nineteen,
was destined by nature rather for an artist than a soldier. He
possessed, in remarkable degree, that talent for painting and
statuary, which was largely the possession of the Etrurians;
and, though belonging to one of the noblest families in his native
city, he did not think it dishonorable to exercise his talent with
industry and devotion. In the invasion of his country by the
fierce barbarians of Rome, he had thrown aside the pencil for
the sword, in the use of which latter weapon he had shown him-
self not a whit less skilful and excellent, because of his prefer-
ence for a less dangerous implement. His captivity was irk-
some, rather than painful and oppressive. He was treated with
indulgence by his captors, and quartered for a season in the fam-
ily of the fierce chief by whose superior prowess lie had been
overthrown. Here, if denied his freedom, and the use of the
sword, he was not denied a resumption of those more agreeable
exercises of art to which he had devoted himself before his cap-
* Rome.