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[95] its wake—come on the southern breeze to men whose cup of ills had already overflowed. There is—must be—some boundary to endurance, on touching which the staunchest heart must sue for truce. Small wonder, then, that some of those who for long years had striven in stranger land for bare idea and abstract principle, should here at last acknowledge weakness, and leave the pilgrimage eye yet all thorns had pierced their way-worn feet. God pity them!

For so it was. Night by night brought darkness, and each recurring morning showed the vacant places of some who dreamed of ruined homes and unprotected dear ones, and waked to yield to an unconquerable yearning to fly to their relief. And thus one enemy, so long repelled with scorn, had gained a foothold in our camp at last.

It has been said that Washington and Lee had kinship of most of the sublimest qualities of manhood, but differed in fortune. I can picture to myself how the former bore himself during the trials of Valley Forge, by recalling the demeanor of Lee during that last terrible winter at Petersburg. Almost without hope; hampered by conditions over which he had no control; over-wrought with duties not attaching to his position; denied by the narrow blindness of the government the only avenue of escape which remained to him; his heart bleeding for the sufferings of his faithful followers, and yearning more in sorrow than anger for those who found not the strength to endure to the end-yet was he patient, always striving, inventing that make—shift, urging this experiment, encouraging the officers, knocking constantly at the door of the government to better the condition of the men, stifling his own forebodings, careless of his own discomforts—the heart, the brain, the eyes of that brave, beset and beleaguered body of starving men.

He had a burden to bear which his great prototype was never called on to endure. Already he had reported to the War Department that except on certain conditions (which the CommissaryGen-eral had declared to be impossible of fulfilment), he could neither hold his lines nor remove the army in safety from them. There remained for him the most exacting ordeal that can confront the commander of any army—to determine without reference to his feelings where the point of military honor ceases and where the duty to humanity begins—what protraction of a hopeless condition is justifiable. He must fight until the verdict of fate was plainly beyond

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