It came roaring from the north, fraught with the icy chillness of those hyperborean regions that are lost to the sunlight for six months, the realm of ice-ribbed caverns, and snow mountains heaped up above the horizon in the cold and cheerless sky. On it came, that northern blast, howling and tearing, and menacing with destruction every obstacle that crossed its path.
Bare, brown spaces of grass here and there, but still so infrequent as only to diversify the scene a little. In the woods, rocks emerging, and, where there is a slope immediately towards the lake, the snow is pretty much gone, and we see partridge-berries frozen, and outer shells of walnuts, and chestnut-burrs, heaped or scattered among the roots of the trees.
All around, too, lay vast quantities of the costliest merchandise, and treasures were heaped in every cranny of the rocks, but all these things only added to the desolation of the scene.
He had been her tutor, her pensioner. She had heaped him with favours; and, after all, she was his queen, and a defenceless woman: and yet he returned her kindness, in the hour of her fall, by invectives fit only for a rancorous and reckless advocate, determined to force a verdict by the basest arts of oratory. Now as to the Casket letters.
Candidly, it seemed little worthy of all this searching. A few broken ends of village, with no particular street, but a succession of open places heaped with logs and fagots; a couple of tilted crosses, a shrine to Our Lady of all Graces on the summit of a little hill; and all this, upon a rattling highland river, in the corner of a naked valley. What went ye out for to see? thought I to myself.
Silks, laces: ear rings, pearl necklace, gold watch, in sort, all the trinkets and articles of dress were lavishly heaped upon me; the sence of which, if it did not create returns of love, forced a kind of grateful fondness, something like love: a distinction which it would be spoiling the pleasure of nine tenths of the keepers in the town to make, and is, I suppose, the very good reason why so few of them ever do make it.
But what is this? While I am noting the terrors of the English clime, they have all turned themselves into allures and delights. There have come three or four days, since I arrived in London, of so fine and mellow a warmth, of skies so tenderly blue, and so heaped with such soft masses of white clouds, that one wonders what there was ever to complain of.
But here the beauty of the landscape terminated: the foreground was horrible to look upon; the whole of the beach was covered with the timbers of the wreck, with water-casks, and other articles, in some parts heaped and thrown up one upon another; and among them lay, jammed and mangled, the bodies of the many who had perished.
Was it only possible to be happy when one knew how to push the difficulties down, just as one might push the folds of a material until at last they were heaped up in one place? It was the old question over again. Formerly he had had his clear faith with which to beat down doubt, but now he could not be content with a blind hope; he required to be shown an expedient.
A low murmur of horror involuntarily came from our lips, and men said in whispers, one to another, the blood suddenly leaving their bronzed faces: "The Indians are going to torture prisoners!" By this time we could see that two stout posts had been set firmly in the earth, and around them were heaped piles of light wood, such as the squaws and children were bringing up in great quantities.