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No. 056 [from The Spectator]
by [?]

He had no sooner got out of the Wood, but he was entertained with such a Landskip of flowry Plains, green Meadows, running Streams, sunny Hills, and shady Vales, as were not to be [represented [3]] by his own Expressions, nor, as he said, by the Conceptions of others. This happy Region was peopled with innumerable Swarms of Spirits, who applied themselves to Exercises and Diversions according as their Fancies led them. Some of them were tossing the Figure of a Colt; others were pitching the Shadow of a Bar; others were breaking the Apparition of [a [4]] Horse; and Multitudes employing themselves upon ingenious Handicrafts with the Souls of departed Utensils; for that is the Name which in the Indian Language they give their Tools when they are burnt or broken. As he travelled through this delightful Scene, he was very often tempted to pluck the Flowers that rose every where about him in the greatest Variety and Profusion, having never seen several of them in his own Country: But he quickly found that though they were Objects of his Sight, they were not liable to his Touch. He at length came to the Side of a great River, and being a good Fisherman himself stood upon the Banks of it some time to look upon an Angler that had taken a great many Shapes of Fishes, which lay flouncing up and down by him.

I should have told my Reader, that this Indian had been formerly married to one of the greatest Beauties of his Country, by whom he had several Children. This Couple were so famous for their Love and Constancy to one another, that the Indians to this Day, when they give a married Man Joy of his Wife, wish that they may live together like Marraton and Yaratilda. Marraton had not stood long by the Fisherman when he saw the Shadow of his beloved Yaratilda, who had for some time fixed her Eye upon him, before he discovered her. Her Arms were stretched out towards him, Floods of Tears ran down her Eyes; her Looks, her Hands, her Voice called him over to her; and at the same time seemed to tell him that the River was impassable. Who can describe the Passion made up of Joy, Sorrow, Love, Desire, Astonishment, that rose in the Indian upon the Sight of his dear Yaratilda? He could express it by nothing but his Tears, which ran like a River down his Cheeks as he looked upon her. He had not stood in this Posture long, before he plunged into the Stream that lay before him; and finding it to be nothing but the Phantom of a River, walked on the Bottom of it till he arose on the other Side. At his Approach Yaratilda flew into his Arms, whilst Marraton wished himself disencumbered of that Body which kept her from his Embraces. After many Questions and Endearments on both Sides, she conducted him to a Bower which she had dressed with her own Hands with all the Ornaments that could be met with in those blooming Regions. She had made it gay beyond Imagination, and was every day adding something new to it. As Marraton stood astonished at the unspeakable Beauty of her Habitation, and ravished with the Fragrancy that came from every Part of it, Yaratilda told him that she was preparing this Bower for his Reception, as well knowing that his Piety to his God, and his faithful Dealing towards Men, would certainly bring him to that happy Place whenever his Life should be at an End. She then brought two of her Children to him, who died some Years before, and resided with her in the same delightful Bower, advising him to breed up those others which were still with him in such a Manner, that they might hereafter all of them meet together in this happy Place.

The Tradition tells us further, that he had afterwards a Sight of those dismal Habitations which are the Portion of ill Men after Death; and mentions several Molten Seas of Gold, in which were plunged the Souls of barbarous Europeans, [who [5]] put to the Sword so many Thousands of poor Indians for the sake of that precious Metal: But having already touched upon the chief Points of this Tradition, and exceeded the Measure of my Paper, I shall not give any further Account of it.


[Footnote 1: Albertus Magnus, a learned Dominican who resigned, for love of study, his bishopric of Ratisbon, died at Cologne in 1280. In alchemy a distinction was made between stone and spirit, as between body and soul, substance and accident. The evaporable parts were called, in alchemy, spirit and soul and accident.]

[Footnote 2: See No. 50.]

[Footnote 3: described]

[Footnote 4: an]

[Footnote 5: that]