Rookwood. A Romance By W. HARRISON AINSWORTH


A Romance By



A Romance By




The Vault

The Skeleton Hand

The Park

The Hall

Sir Reginald Rookwood

Sir Piers Rookwood

The Return

An Irish Adventure

An English Adventurer

Ranulph Rookwood

Lady Rookwood

The Chamber of Death

The Brothers


The Storm

The Funeral Oration

The Churchyard

The Funeral

The Captive

The Apparition


A Morning Ride

A Gipsy Encampment


Barbara Lovel

The Inauguration

Eleanor Mowbray

Mrs. Mowbray

The Parting

The Philter

St. Cyprian’s Cell

The Bridal

Alan Rookwood

Mr. Coates

Dick Turpin


The Rendezvous at Kilburn

Tom King

A Surprise

The Hue and Cry

The Short Pipe

Black Bess

The York Stage

A Road-side Inn


The Gibbet

The Phantom Steed

Cawood Ferry


The Hut on Thorne Waste

Major Mowbray


The Dower of Sybil

The Sarcophagus

“By the powers! But it shall do, anyhow … You’ve bullied me long enough.”

“Sir Reginald passed his rapier through his brother’s body”

“An Individual known at the hall as Jack Palmer.”

“Disobey me, and your blood be upon your own head.”

“By heaven! It is the fiend himself upon a Black Horse.”

“Thunders of Applause.”

“I am Sir Luke Rookwood.”

“Bess charged and cleared the lower part of the mouldering priory walls.”

“And art thou gone, Bess!”

“Luke drew in the rein beneath one of the largest of the trees.”



It has been observed, and I am apt to believe it is an observation which will generally be found true, that before a terrible truth comes to light, there are certain murmuring whispers fly before it, and prepare the minds of men for the reception of the truth itself.

Gallick Reports

Case of the Count Saint Geran



WITHIN a sepulchral vault, and at midnight, two persons were seated. The chamber was of singular construction and considerable extent. The roof was of solid stone masonry, and rose in a wide semicircular arch to the height of about seventeen feet, measured from the centre of the ceiling to the ground floor, while the sides were divided by slight partition-walls into ranges of low narrow catacombs. The entrance to each cavity was surmounted by an obtusely-pointed arch, resting upon slender granite pillars; and the intervening space was filled up with a variety of tablets, escutcheons, shields, and inscriptions, recording the titles and heraldic honours of the departed. There were no doors to the niches; and within might be seen piles of coffins, packed one upon another, till the floor groaned with the weight of lead.

Against one of the pillars, upon a hook, hung a rack of tattered, time-out-of-mind hatchments; and in the centre of the tomb might be seen the effigies of Sir Ranulph de Rokewode, the builder of the mausoleum, and the founder of the race who slept within its walls. This statue, wrought in black marble, differed from most monumental carved-work, in that its posture was erect and life-like. Sir Ranulph was represented as sheathed in a complete suit of mail, decorated with his emblazoned and gilded surcoat, his arm leaning upon the pommel of a weighty curtal-axe. The attitude was that of stern repose. A conically-formed helmet rested upon the brow; the beaver was raised, and revealed harsh but commanding features. The golden spur of knighthood was fixed upon the heel; and at the feet, enshrined in a costly sarcophagus of marble, dug from the same quarry as the statue, rested the mortal remains of one of “the sternest knights to his mortal foe that ever put speare in the rest.”

Streaming in a wavering line upon the roof, the sickly flame of the candle partially fell upon the human figures before alluded to, throwing them into darkest relief, and casting their opaque and fantastical shadows along the ground. An old coffin upon a bier, we have said, served the mysterious twain for a seat. Between them stood a bottle and a glass, evidences that whatever might be the ulterior object of their stealthy communion, the immediate comfort of the creature had not been altogether overlooked.

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