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towards him, telling him to the outer door open, and instretch out his arms, and to stantly made the preconcerted go slowly, that the butter might signal to Balbi to stop working. not run over the book. I ob- Lorenzo entered, accompanied served him steadily; he could by two of his underlings and not turn his eyes away from the a prisoner, and apologized for butter, which he feared to spill. being obliged to bring him a He proposed to take the dish scoundrel as a companion. The first, and then return for the person he thus described was a book, but I told him by so very ill-looking, small, thin man, doing my present would lose apparently between thirty and half its value; he consented forty, wearing a shabby dress to take both at last, observing and a round black wig. After that it would not be his fault if having ordered a mattress for the butter ran over. I followed the new-comer, and informed him with my eyes as far as I him that tenpence a day was could, and soon heard Balbi allowed for his support, the cough three times, the con- jailor took his leave. certed signal of the success of The name of Casanova's unmy stratagem.'
welcome comrade was Sorodaci. Balbi now set to work with He was a common informer, and the stiletto. Though he was a spy of the worst class, who young and strong, he did not was sent to prison for having labour with the same spirit deceived the council by false which had been displayed by information, while at the same Casanova, to whom he often time he had betrayed his own wrote complaining of the toil cousin. He was intensely suthat he had to encounter, and perstitious, his only vulnerable expressing his fears that it would spot, and upon this Casanova be unavailing. As, however, worked. To wait till he was the floor presented but com- removed would have been to paratively few obstacles, he had relinquish all hope of escape. advanced so far by the middle The last night of October was of October, that only the last fixed for the completion of the plank remained to be cut enterprise, as the inquisitors and through. To push in the ceil- their secretary annually visited ing was all that would then be some villages on the mainland requisite to open a passage, on the ist of November; and and this, of course, was not to Lorenzo, taking advantage of be done till the moment arrived their absence, usually made for their flight. But while Casa- himself so merry, that he did nova was exulting in the idea not rise till late the next mornof speedily regaining his liberty, ing to visit his prisoners. Casaa formidable impediment was nova persuaded the wretched thrown in his way. He heard spy, that the Holy Virgin would
send an angel to release him, easily, that he doubted not of through an aperture in the ceil- being able to make a practicable ing, in the space of five or six breach in less than an hour. days; and so thoroughly did Returning to his own cell, he the dupe fall into the trap pre-cut up clothes, napkins, and pared for him, that Balbi was sheets, and converted them all enabled to pursue his labours into a hundred feet of rope, the undisturbed till the 31st, when pieces of which he took special all was ready
careto noose together in the firmThe inquisitors and their est manner. He then packed up secretary had set out for the his clothes, his silk mantle, and mainland. Lorenzo had sup- some linen. The whole party plied the wants of the captives, then removed to the cell of the and was preparing for his ca count. Desiring Balbi to get rousal, and the field was thus ready his package, Casanova left clear for Casanova's opera- set to work to enlarge the opentions. As the clock struck ing in the roof. On looking twelve, Balbi began his final out, he became aware that the attack on the floor; and in a light of the moon and the finefew minutes a piece of the last ness of the night would not plank and the ceiling fell in, allow of their entering upon and was speedily followed by their enterprise till a later hour. the worker himself. Casanova St. Mark's Place was full of - now took the stiletto, and leav- people, some of whom could ing the monk with his com- scarcely fail to see them scrampanion, he himself passed into bling about the roof. In three the upper cell to reconnoitre. hours the moon would set, and At first sight he perceived that they could then proceed. As Count Asquino was not a man money was an indispensable fitted for making perilous exer- article, the loan of fifty sequins tions. On being told how the was requested from the count, escape was to be effected, the who, however, would only lend count, who was seventy years them two, with which they were of age, replied that he had no compelled to remain satisfied. wings, without which it would The spy would not make the be impossible to descend from attempt to escape with them ; the roof. He candidly owned his courage failed him, and that he had not courage enough Casanova gladly left him beto face the peril which must be hind. The moon had now sunk encountered, and would there- below the horizon, and it was fore stay where he was, and time to depart. But here we pray for those who had more will give Casanova's own words. strength and fewer fears.
'I placed on Balbi's shoulder Casanova now examined the the bundle of cord, and on the roof, and found it break so other his packet, and loaded
myself in the same manner. We backs were turned towards the then dressed in our vest only, island of St. Georgio Maggiore, and with our hats on our heads, and two hundred steps before looked through the opening Ius was the cupola of St. Mark's, had made. I went first.
I went first. Not a part of the ducal palace, withstanding the mist, every wherein the chapel of the Doge object was visible enough. is more magnificent than any Kneeling and creeping, I thrust king's. Here we took off our my weapon between the joints bundles. He placed his ropes of the lead plates; holding with between his legs; but on laying one hand by that, and with the his hat upon them, it rolled other by the plank on which down the roof and fell into the the lead plate had lain, which canal. He looked on this as I had removed, I raised myself a bad omen, and complained on the roof. Balbi, in following that he had now lost hat, gown, me, grasped my band behind, shirts, and manuscript; but I so I resembled a beast of bur- remarked to him that it was den, which must draw as well fortunate the hat had fallen to as carry; in this manner I had the right and not to the left, to ascend a steep and slippery for otherwise it would have roof side. When we were half- alarmed the sentinel in the way up this dangerous place, arsenal. Balbi desired me to stop a
After looking about me a moment, for that one of his little, I bid the monk remain bundles had fallen off, and had quite still here till my return, probably only rolled down to the and climbed along the roof, my gutter. My first thought was dagger in my hand. to give him a push that would in this manner for an hour, trysend him after it, but Heaven ing to find a place to which I enabled me to contain myself; might fasten my rope to enable the punishment would have me to descend; but all the places fallen upon me as well as him, I looked down into were enfor without his help I could do closed ones, and there were nothing. I asked if the bundle insuperable difficulties in getting was gone; and when I heard to the canonica on the other that it contained his black gown, side of the church; yet everytwo shirts, and a manuscript, I thing must be attempted, and I consoled him for its loss; he must hazard it without allowing sighed and followed me, still myself to think too long on the holding by my clothes.
danger. But about two-thirds ‘After I had climbed over of the way down the side of the about sixteen lead plates, Iroof I observed a dormer winreached the ridge of the roof; dow, which probably led to I set myself astride on it, and some passage, leading to the the monk imitated me. Our dwelling-places not within the
limits of the prisons, and I 'I now returned to the top thought I should find some of of the roof, and crept back the doors going out of it open to my companion. I found at daybreak. If any one should him in a dreadful rage, cursing meet us, and take us for state me for having left him two prisoners, he would find, I hours; he at last 'thought I determined, some difficulty in must have fallen over, and was detaining us. With this con- about to return to his prison. sideration, with one leg stretched He asked me what were my inout towards the window, I let tentions. “You will soon sce,” I myself gently slide down till I said ; and packing our bundles reached the little roof of it that on our necks, I bid him follow ran parallel to the great one, me. When we reached the roof and set myself upon it
. I then of the window, I explained to leaned over, and by feeling dis- him what I had done, and what covered it to be a window, with I intended to do. I asked his small round panes of glass cased advice as to the best mode of in lead, behind a grating. To getting in at it. It would be penetrate this required a file, easy for the first man, as the and I had only my stiletto. second would hold the rope ; Bitterly disappointed, and in but what would this last one do? great embarrassment, I seemed In leaping down from the winincapable of coming to a deter- dow to the floor he might break mination, when the clock of a leg; for we knew nothing of St. Mark's striking midnight the space between. The monk awakened my fainting resolu- instantly proposed I should let tion. I remembered that this him down first, and afterwards sound announced the begin- think how I should get in myself. ning of All Saints' Day: when I was sufficiently master of mymisfortune drives a strong mind self to conceal my indignation at to devotion, there is always a this proposal, and to proceed to little superstition mingled with execute his wish. I tied a rope it; that bell aroused me to ac- round my companion, and sittion, and promised me victory. ting astride of the window roof, Lying on my stomach, and let him down to the window, stretching over, I struck vio- telling him to rest on his elbows lently against the grating with on the roof, and to put his feet my dagger in the hope of forcing through the hole I had made. it in. In a quarter of an hour I then lay down again on the four of the wooden squares were roof, and told him to be satisfied broken, and my hand grasped that I would hold the rope fast. the wood-work; the panes of · Balbi came safely down upon glass were speedily demolished, the floor, untied himself, and I for I heeded not the cutting of drew the rope back to me; but
in doing this I found that the
space from the window to the the window, which diminished floor was ten times my arm's its weight considerably. But it length; it was impossible, there was necessary to push it in fore, to jump this. Balbi called two feet more; I then should to me to throw the rope to him, only have to climb back to but I took care not to follow the window roof, and by means his absurd and selfish counsel. of the line draw it entirely in. I now determined on returning To effect this I was compelled to the great roof, where I dis- to raise myself on my knees ; covered a cupola at a place while doing so they slipped off I had not yet been ; it brought the gutter, and I lay with my me to a stage laid with lead whole breast and elbows upon plates, and which had a trap- it. door covered with two fold "I exerted all my strength ing shutters. I found here a to draw my body up again, and tub full of fresh lime, building lay myself on the gutter. I tools, and a tolerably long lad- had fortunately no trouble with der ; the latter, of course, the ladder; it was now three attracted my particular atten- feet in the window, and did not tion. I tied my rope round move. As soon as I found that one of the rings, and climbing I lay firm, I endeavoured to up the roof again, drew the raise my right knee up to the ladder after me. The ladder level of the gutter. I had nearly I must contrive to put in at the succeeded, when the effort gave window, and it was twelve times me a fit of the cramp, as parathe length of my arm. Now I lyzing as it was painful. What missed the help of the monk. a moment ! I lay for two I let the ladder down to the minutes motionless; at length gutter, so that one end leaned the pain subsided, and I sucagainst the window; the other ceeded in raising one knee after stood in the gutter; I drew it the other upon the marble again; up to me again as I leaned I rested a few minutes, and then over, and endeavoured to get pushed the ladder still farther the end in at the window, but into the window. Sufficiently in vain ; it always came over experienced in the laws of the roof; and the morning might equilibrium by this adventure, come and find me here, and I returned to the window roof, bring Lorenzo soon after it. I and drawing the ladder entirely determined to slide down to in, my companion received the the gutter, in order to give the end of it, and secured it; I then ladder the right direction. This threw in the rope and bundle, gutter of marble yielded me a and soon rejoined him : after resting place, where I lay at brief congratulations, I felt about length on it; and I succeeded to examine the dark and narrow in putting the ladder a foot into place we were in.