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      II.



      On the seventeenth, when the construction of the fort was well advanced, Frontenac called the chiefs to a grand council, which was held with all possible state and ceremony. His dealing with the Indians on this and other occasions was truly admirable. Unacquainted as he was with them, he seems to have had an instinctive perception of the treatment they required. His predecessors had never ventured to [Pg 93] address the Iroquois as "Children," but had always styled them "Brothers;" and yet the assumption of paternal authority on the part of Frontenac was not only taken in good part, but was received with apparent gratitude. The martial nature of the man, his clear, decisive speech, and his frank and downright manner, backed as they were by a display of force which in their eyes was formidable, struck them with admiration, and gave tenfold effect to his words of kindness. They thanked him for that which from another they would not have endured.On the way down from the hill I met Mr. James Clark, the principal inhabitant of Utica, and one of the earliest settlers of this region. I accosted him, told him my objects, and requested [Pg 240] a half hour's conversation with him, at his leisure. He seemed interested in the inquiry, and said he would visit me early in the evening at the inn, where, accordingly, he soon appeared. The conversation took place in the porch, where a number of farmers and others were gathered. I asked Mr. Clark if any Indian remains were found in the neighborhood. "Yes," he replied, "plenty of them." I then inquired if there was any one spot where they were more numerous than elsewhere. "Yes," he answered again, pointing towards the farmhouse on the meadow; "on my farm down yonder by the river, my tenant ploughs up teeth and bones by the peck every spring, besides arrow-heads, beads, stone hatchets, and other things of that sort." I replied that this was precisely what I had expected, as I had been led to believe that the principal town of the Illinois Indians once covered that very spot. "If," I added, "I am right in this belief, the great rock beyond the river is the one which the first explorers occupied as a fort; and I can describe it to you from their accounts of it, though I have never seen it, except from the top of the hill where the trees on and around it prevented me from seeing any part but the front." The men present now gathered around to listen. "The rock," I continued, "is nearly a hundred and fifty feet high, and rises directly from the water. The front and two sides are perpendicular and inaccessible; but there is one place where it is possible for a man to climb up, though with difficulty. The top is large enough and level enough for houses and fortifications." Here several of the men exclaimed: "That's just it." "You've hit it exactly." I then asked if there was any other rock on that side of the river which could answer to the description. They all agreed that there was no such rock on either side, along the whole length of the river. I then said: "If the Indian town was in the place where I suppose it to have been, I can tell you the nature of the country which lies behind the hills on the farther side of the river, though I know nothing about it except what I have learned from writings nearly two centuries old. From the top of the hills, you look out upon a great prairie reaching as far as you can see, except that it is crossed by a belt of woods, following the course of a stream [Pg 241] which enters the main river a few miles below." (See ante, p. 221, note.) "You are exactly right again," replied Mr. Clark; "we call that belt of timber the 'Vermilion Woods,' and the stream is the Big Vermilion." "Then," I said, "the Big Vermilion is the river which the French called the Aramoni; 'Starved Rock' is the same on which they built a fort called St. Louis, in the year 1682; and your farm is on the site of the great town of the Illinois."

      Dr. Tach writes to me,"I have inspected sixteen bone-pits," (in the Huron country,) "the situation of which is indicated on the little pencil map I send you. They contain from six hundred to twelve hundred skeletons each, of both sexes and all ages, all mixed together purposely. With one exception, these pits also contain pipes of stone or clay, small earthen pots, shells, and wampum wrought of these shells, copper ornaments, beads of glass, and other trinkets. Some pits contained articles of copper of aboriginal Mexican fabric."[12] For Giffard, Puiseaux, and other colonists, compare Langevin, Notes sur les Archives de Notre-Dame de Beauport, 5, 6, 7; Ferland, Notes sur les Archives de N. D. de Qubec, 22, 24 (1863); Ibid., Cours d'Histoire du Canada, I. 266; Le Jeune, Relation, 1636, 45; Faillon, Histoire de la Colonie Fran?aise, I. c. iv., v.

      Again from the distance, as if in confirmation, echoed a low peal of thunder.


      The master and slave continued their way towards the Cerameicus.

      Well thenhome! replied Hipyllos laughing, but to-morrow....

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      The voice which echoed in clear, musical tones on the stillness of evening made Hipyllos heart throb. He had never heard Clytie speak, but it seemed to him that she must speak thus.I will now speak of Lycons good qualities, and he related how the latter had been respected as a citizen and popular with all in Athens. We Methonians, he added, have cause to be proud that an insignificant slave from this city was found worthy to304 associate with the leading men in Athens, so that he was daily seen arm in arm with the rich Timotheus, son of Conon.

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      "Thus far, he has not told me his plan; and he changes his mind every moment. He is a man so suspicious, and so afraid that one will penetrate his secrets, that I dare not ask him anything. He says [Pg 356] that M. de Parassy, commissary's clerk, with whom he has often quarrelled, is paid by his enemies to defeat his undertaking; and many other things with which I will not trouble you....

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      Byssa strained her sight to the utmost, her bosom heaving with anxious suspense. Suddenly she turned very pale and throwing herself upon Trattas breast, faltered in a low voice:


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